Today, I’ve been reading through forums on a certain site about why people get annoyed with fashion bloggers — whether in general, or specific bloggers –, and it’s been… interesting. Reading negative feedback about bloggers as a whole or bloggers that I follow and like has ruffled my defensive feathers here and there, but it’s also made me really evaluate my own blogging.
Now, I kind of hope to never be under the radar of that forum, because let’s face it: who wants to be criticized when they think they’re okay? Not to say I hate getting constructive criticism — as a person who posted fiction online for years, I’m used to that — but a lot of the opinions I’ve read can be very snarky in a not funny way. And I’m pretty soft-hearted.
But it’s also been helpful, in a way, to read opinions from people who don’t have fashion blogs, who get annoyed at certain fashion blogs, or who just get tired of the same-old same-old from the style blogging niche on a whole.
I’ve learned that it’s okay not to be like every other blogger out there. Obviously, people like originality, but I’ve always felt a certain pressure to do certain things just because other bloggers do it too. My blog may not be the most unique, but as I read through the posts and comments and critiques, I realized that the little voice in the back of my head telling me I need to post more lifestyle/cooking/kid/husband/adventure posts just because that’s what fashion bloggers are “supposed to do” needs to be squelched.
It’s okay if all I do is post fashion with the occasional “look at my kid, he’s cute!” days. It’s okay if I don’t actually want to post more about my lifestyle. (In pictures — I don’t mind talking about it, but photographing it is a whole different thing). Because I’m not really inspired by my current surroundings, I don’t think my house is that great, and life as a pregnant mom who can’t move around much due to ligament pain can get pretty repetitive. Someday, when we have our own space, I’ll get more into lifestyle blogging, maybe. But it’s okay not to be A Beautiful Mess (whom I love) and have a perfect life. It’s okay to stick to one topic for a while. It’s okay, because it’s better to write with sincerity about what you love than fake enthusiasm for posts you just aren’t feeling.
I like fashion, books, and writing, so that’s what I’ll post for now.
I’ve also realized that I need to get more creative with photography again. I’m in a photography rut right now; I have a routine, and it needs to change. I always admire bloggers who have interesting shots and change it up rather than the standard full body + detail + head shots (the rut I’m in right now), and I need to kick-start that admiration into something productive. I was trying to have my husband do my photography, but I really enjoy taking my own images. Plus, with blogging, I feel like having a photographer makes it less my own, in some way; I get less creative license with my photos, and often forget to tell him if I have a certain shot I really want.
Mostly, though, reading through the site has just reminded me that nobody likes a copycat, a blogger who writes nothingness just to have text with her pictures, blogs that only post content from other sites/other creators, or bloggers whose style has become walking advertisement due to all c/o items. It’s been a good reminder not to worry that I don’t have all the money or fame or adventures that other bloggers do, that it’s okay if my house isn’t perfect and my life is just normal.
Shirt, Tee Fury | skirt and belt, thrifted | shoes, Modcloth | glasses, c/o Firmoo | earrings, Reniassance Faire
Basically, I’ve learned through these forums that the best way to blog is to be yourself. Do what you love, improve your skills as much as you can, and don’t try to be like everyone else because you think that’s what will make you popular. And, you know, don’t be afraid to take some critique and always be looking for ways to improve.
Also, don’t post 100 pictures in one post. Haha! That, apparently, is an annoyance factor with a lot of blog readers.
What have you learned from constructive (or not constructive) criticism over the years? From reading it about other people? Do you ever feel pressured to blog about things that don’t actually interest or inspire you, simply because everyone else does it?
(P.S. This outfit is from February, but for some reason I never posted it. And that’s why I look less pregnant.)