I Don’t Want to Be a Fashion Blogger

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I joined Plurk a few months ago out of idle curiosity. I fully expected it to be a hotbed of drama and not my cuppa social media. Twitter has always been my style, sarcastic and sardonic and the perfect place to admit an urge to chain your family in the basement. (I said URGE. I would never.) (Shut up.)

And while Plurk does indeed have more than its share of “drama” it’s also a pretty neat place if you’re picky about your timeline. I’ve met some interesting folks from SL I might have never found otherwise. I’ve discovered creators who are making some amazing things and places to explore inworld. Turns out Plurk is a great place to learn about Second Life.

90% of my timeline is made up of SL fashion bloggers and fashion creators. I have to admit I don’t frequent many fashion blogs, because most of them cover the same events and post the same items and I can see the same dress only so many times before my eyes bleed. Far better writers than me have written in depth about the relationship between bloggers and creators, so I’m not going to rehash that here. But I do wish there was more variety and diversity represented in fashion blogs. And I wish that the SL market wasn’t completely event driven like it is.

Most of the “review” blogs that I really follow are home and garden, because that’s my real weakness in SL. But as a photographer meself, I know that those fashion blog posts take a lot of time and effort to put together. There are bloggers who slap a look together and throw it out there just to  meet a quota imposed by an event or creator, and those are immediately apparent to anyone who sees them. But the bloggers who put a lot of thought and care into their posts go through a lot to create them. Those who include SLURLS to the stores of the items? They’re heroes in my book.

I challenged  myself to do a fashion post, but I’m not a very good fashionista. My skin is 4 years old, if I’m wearing shoes they’re probably my 5 year old Kboots, and I change clothes only a couple of times a month. My SL photos aren’t about the clothes, so I tend to keep them very simple and neutral. I don’t shop much, except maybe for hair.

So part of my personal challenge was to go shopping. I was all geared up to put a look together, to find pieces and parts from different stores and create an entire EN-SEM-BLEH all by my lonesome. I logged in, checked my $L balance, and de-scripted my avi to prepare for shopping. But then I had to TP … where? I buy my clothes from a few select stores, but I wanted something new. I opened a fashion feed and every single post was from the new Fameshed event that opened just today. le sigh

Now, I know better than to attend an event on Day One. Even if you can get in, you’ll deal with lag and undelivered purchases and have to rub up against the unwashed masses. Ew. But I tried and wonders never cease, I TPed into Fameshed. My super-duper-mega-sweet new computer handled the lag like a champ, and I only had to hover over the person loitering at the landing point for three minutes before I could move.

I shopped. I’ll be honest here, I bought some home items. Then I remembered what I was doing, and I turned my attention to the clothes on the walls.

I was uninspired. Now, wait. Hold up. The creators are great! Most of the items are good quality and probably very fashionable. But I’m not young, nor very hip. I don’t want to look like a 15 year old Lithuanian model. So much of the fashion world these days doesn’t appeal to me at all. It’s just all so flowery, so twee, so Zoe Deschanel. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. (But there is.)

And holy sticker shock, Batman! I’m prepared to shell out the Lindens for nice, original items.  But the stuff at Fameshed was pricey. A few stores were more expensive there than in their own stores for similar items. I really, really didn’t want to spend so much on something I would likely not wear much after this post. My intricate ensemble was looking less and less likely. And I was running out of inworld time.

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I spotted this dress from Zaara from across the room. I love the style, I tend to always wear black, and HELLO BIRD PRINT. This dress is something I would wear on my real world body, minus the sleeve frillies. I’m not stepping very far outside my comfort zone here, and no one would call this an entire look, but it was a start.

I bought the dress, congratulated myself with a few more Meshworx chairs, and TPed to my photo platform.

And then I realized I needed shoes. My Kboots weren’t going to cut it, and wearing the GOS bare feet would be a cop-out. I own a pair of Baby-T heels, but they’re eons old and really, I was trying to embrace the spirit of my challenge. So went to buy shoes.

I started at Slink, because I wanted to support a worthy cause. But everything there was so… pointy. Yes, that’s a technical shoe term. I’m not a big fan of heels, and they all just seem so complicated. I tried, I did! But in the end I TPed to GOS because I knew I wouldn’t have to spend any time matching skintones, at which I am lousy at best. I bought the least pointy heels in the place, and even though everyone and their father owns a pair of these in SL, I still like them.

By this time my $L balance was depleted and my time was almost gone. So I didn’t even bother changing my hair. I love this hair. I have an asymmetrical cut in real life right now that looks just like this, and it’s ridiculous how much it thrills me to find it inworld. But I needed a location for the pics.

The outfit is supposed to be the star of these shots. But you can see above that I failed miserably. I’m just not a good fashion photographer. I loved the pattern of the shadows on the walls, the shape of the door, the lighting… I composed a pretty picture, but you can barely see anything that I’m wearing. Fashionista fail!

So I snapped some quick shots on my photo platform and called it a day.

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Sorta.

I’d only done half the work of posting a fashion blog. But I had laundry to do, phone calls to  make, and family in the basement to feed. So it took a while before I could come back to finish this. I edited and cropped my pics, and made my knees work with the rest of my legs in photoshop. I got the pics all ready and sat down to write this post.

And then I remembered the credits. The whole point of the fashion blog is to feature the items. What was my hair called again? Was it Tram or Lamb, because let’s be honest, they look the same. I had to log back in and copy all of my credit info. What a pain in the ass.

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By this time I don’t really even feel like critiquing the the items. The dress fits great, but only if I wear my emaciated “mesh shape.” That’s not Zaara’s fault, but it’s a complaint I voice often. I like my curves, and clipping them for mesh is frustrating. The dress is incredible, though, and I actually really love it. I think I’ll wear it.

The shoes are a snap to color, and I will admit they make me feel sexy. But I still prefer my bare feet and these will likely only see the windlight of day when I break out this dress.

I had such big plans, ya’ll. I was going to do layers, and jewelry and possibly even make up. I was gonna buy a BELT. I was going to rock the fashion blog and introduce small, undiscovered creators. But I managed a dress and a pair of shoes, and both came from very well known designers. I pretty much failed my own challenge.

Jesus, it’s tedious. And time consuming. I often spend several days putting together a set for a photograph, but I love that time and it passes so quickly! I could work on my sets and windlight and angles all day, and never tire of it. I hope that’s how the good fashion bloggers feel about what they do, too. I hope they love it, because I hated it. You won’t catch me doing this again anytime soon.

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But I do love the details of this dress.

Here’s what I’m wearing:

Skin- Curio

Shape- Whiskey’s Too-skinny Mesh Shape

Hair- Tram C407 

Dress- Zaara Chiatra Chiffon dress (from Fameshed) 

Shoes- GOS Lolita Espadrills 

Eyes- IKON Ardent 

Necklace- Olive Folded Golden Paper Letter Necklace (from Arcade) 

All poses from Flowey (Flutter Memel)

Location: The Legion Project 

 

 

29 thoughts on “I Don’t Want to Be a Fashion Blogger

  1. I’m glad you went through the trouble, because fashion blogging – good fashion blogging – is a ton of work and I don’t think people are quite as aware of what a giant pain it is to put together good content in that vein.

    And I’m glad you hated it, because really, we don’t need another fashion blogger. :)

  2. I think this has got to be one of the most interesting blog I’ve read about fashion blogging in general! Even though you don’t want to be a fashion blogger, I think you pretty much highlighted all the tedious pains of being one. Which is totally cool, every interest or hobby needs its set of negatives for those who love it to stick to it even more. I think its the entire ‘if you don’t know pain, you don’t know how good it feels to be successful’ or something along that line that’s probably fancier and prettier :3

    I’m the downright opposite of you though. Although I don’t think I’m a good blogger whatsoever – I end up wearing way too much ‘old’ things and never changing my skin as well *lazy anya* But to me, SL Photography is mind boggling and I have no idea how you guys get such amazing shadows, think of such awesome concepts – very envious. I remember watching William Weaver at work once shooting photos and getting a machinima done. I couldn’t understand how he could let 2-4 hours pass without even feeling it slip by. Then i did a blog post that took just about the same time – and I got it.

    We all have different things to offer or contribute, we should stick to what we love though; cause at the end of the day – we’re the ones ‘suffering’ through it.

    I hope you stay on as a photographer and never change that fact. Because you’re brilliant at it, and we need that eye candy in our SL-life!

  3. Love this. Whiskey! You hit it on the head. For those that take the time and write, and get inspired in fashion blogging – it’s a lot of work! What I loved about this: you kept it real. You broke it down, gave great points and took awesome pics as well (well, you always do :P)
    <3

  4. This was quite a suprise post from you and I love how you walked us through your whole experience.

    I feel its good to try something different every once in awhile and see things from the other side. Its very tedious to do this on a regular basis and till this day, I dont know how I have the patience. Yes, there is an abundant amount of “us” nowadays. However, I enjoy being a fashion blogger and the creativity process that goes with it.

    But to the point: Regular photog or fashion blogger; it takes equal amount of time, effort and mainly “interest”.

    Btw, very nice styling. ;)

  5. You always make me smile, i love your way to write ! And yes, be a fashion blogger, a good one is a lot of work ! You gave it a nice try ;) So now you may go back to your favorite posts and enjoy it for our great pleasure ;)

  6. I LOVE you!
    Also, could you point me to the home & garden blogs, pretty please? *_* All I seem to find are fashion blogs and…yeah well, not my cup of tea, either.

    I have the same issue with my shape and I refuse to change it unless I really, really adore the piece I want to wear. *sits and waits for mesh deformer, bloody hell*

  7. I laughed like hell at your post. I can’t tell you how many pictures I’ve trashed because they didn’t show the outfit well enough! Keep doing what you love!

  8. I loved reading your post and how you went through all these tedious steps to come to your pictures. No worries though… we have too many fashion blogs already, no need for more :)

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  10. It was great to see you work through the process. I myself(when I find time to do a fashion post) often pick a theme, a colour, a word even, and create a look from that, rather than what is hot of the feeds/sales/events. It makes for more unique blogging. I also never understood the mindset that if it is more than a month old, you shouldn’t blog it. Never hurt anyone to mix an older released item in with something newer.

    That skin is amazing on you, by the way.

  11. What an awesome post and such a fun read! The thing I love most about blogging is taking the pictures! It’s like the best of both worlds! But you’re right, it takes a lot of time and patience and OMG those credits each time… haha But so glad we can all be free to do whatever we love most in our SL <333

  12. Appreciate your honesty about the family in the basement, I don’t feel so alone anymore! \m/ Your writing is a constant source of realism and comfort, thank you for it!

  13. This was hilarious! I do get frustrated at times, but not about any of the reasons you did. I simply love fashion blogging. lol, My frustrations are usually 1) Time to blog and feeling guilty because my partner wants me and I want to blog and I do want to do both, so I am torn! 2) KNOWING that i have seen the perfect necklace, shoe, hair, whatever… and not remembering where it was or what store, or what it was called. Fashion blogging IS a lot of work, but honestly when I am in the zone- I don’t notice. I love it, but it was so interesting to see your perspective. Thank you for sharing.

  14. There is an important step left out in this post. Yes, shopping around to find what you like, choosing coordinating pieces, spending the L$, putting it all together, shooting it, etc. These are all important. Keeping track of how much and where purchases were made is also a great courtesy to readers.

    But for me the trends in SL fashion now leave off the most important step. It’s all about glamorizing the model and few, if any, blogs (or photo posts for that matter) offer legitimate consumer information. When I started fashion blogging and in most of the early blogs that followed us, there was a legitimate push to inform fellow consumers about honest concerns with products. Given the amount of money that gets spent on SL clothing, how deceptive displays are, and how many times demos obscure possible concerns, there is still a great need for consumer watchdogs. This mindset is not just about nitpicking, but to highlight and celebrate innovations and improvements when they came along. Without the pushes many of us made in the early days, a lot of things we all take for granted these days might have taken a lot longer to develop. In fact, I consider the glut of sameness that currently defines SL mesh fashion is largely because most of the lack of critical blogging.

    Models spending hours fitting often badly or shoddily made items, airbrushing them in photoshop and then putting in a blurb about how much they love it. Everyone is entitled to spend their L$ and enjoy what they want to do, but I find it a deeply deceptive environment. This is complicated by the fact that the few bloggers who do offer critical voice are rabidly attacked in flashmobs. The level of bullying is worse than I’ve ever seen it before.

    There is little, if anything, critical that could be offered regarding Zaara and GOS products. If anything, perhaps that GOS has recently abandoned their previous fair pricing structure on repeat purchases to join the throng of money grubbing that now defines the SL shoe market. But it’s hard to blame an original content creator for making whatever money they can.

    I understand better than anyone the work and patience that goes into fashion blogging. I also understand that skipping critical feedback means you never have to deal with the tirades. But it is a powerful absence. Having the tenacity to push through to the final step and put your name behind the words really means something on the rare times I’ve exposed to it.

    I’m glad you showcased the work that goes into an SL fashion post. I just wanted to include that the steps left out might actually be the most important steps of all.

    Cheers.

  15. I have to admit, I do love it. I don’t like the credits and stuff – those I do as a courtesy to anyone who likes what I’m wearing, so they can get it too – but I love dressing myself up, combining different cosmetics, finding things which work together for a coordinated ensemble, and then – gods willing – finding a sim which matches the feel of the dress (or making it fit through blunt application of windlight). I’ll often look up six hours in and wonder where the time went. LOVE the shoes, too; I have some espadrills from G Field (you might want to try them the next time you look for shoes; some of the highest quality, least expensive on the grid) but I love the color contrast on those.

    I’ve done a couple of posts with “sets”, but I tend to like my white background pictures the least because it’s the dynamic intersection of my look and a surrounding sim which really drives me; something about the happy accidents of that. I think the most fun “set” piece I ever did was when I reproduced my favorite pictures on blocks, knocked them around and played with them, then posed on them and snapped a shot. Hee hee, it was fun. I’m always in awe of your sets, to be honest; they’re so amazing.

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  18. Thinking about it, I don’t know if I’m a fashion freak as well, though I act like one in some ways.
    I agree with you about Fameshed, and some other events. They’re highly comercial. Of course, I’m excited around them, but most of the time I get to be dissapointed. I don’t know even why I tend to be so excited. Maybe because I like waiting, God knows. The stuff they put there is nice, but maybe too nice, as you named it. It’s exactly like RL sometimes.

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