Fashion Blogging : The Road Ahead
By: Jennine Jacob

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Looking at the home page, you might notice that we haven’t posted here for a while. Over the last few years, IFB has gone in ebbs and flows, I’ve really tried to post only when I’m inspired, and a few times I thought about shutting the whole project down. Thankfully the greater part of this year, I’ve been very inspired about what was going on in the fashion bloggosphere, and I still am, but I think I’m at a loss to how to relay this to the community.

What is happening with the fashion blogging community today?

I don’t want to say, ‘back when I first started blogging, it was like this…’ because there are a lot of factors there, mostly around my own eagerness and enthusiasm for my new found voice. I don’t want to say we had a stronger community then, because, well, we didn’t, or there was less gossip then, because there wasn’t.  But I do think that the fact that back then a ‘famous’ fashion blogger only meant famous amongst people who blog, and not everyone knew what a blog was.  Today, bloggers are sat one seat away from Anna Wintour at fashion shows and are becoming more visible every day.

Does that change things? I think so. It certainly has a factor into what a bloggers goals are. My first goals simply revolved around having a blog and growing it. Today, in the community, there certainly seems to be an element of wanting to be a star, and if  you’re not a star,  your blog is somehow not successful. I don’t really want to give wind to the negative posts and comments along with the backlashes that have been going on, but there seems to be something tense in the air between those who get attention and those who do not.

I’m not going to say that I don’t roll my eyes, or that I’m immune to feeling insufficient, nor do I feel ungrateful for the successes I have experienced as a blogger. But something is changing here, and I’m not sure what it is. I’m not sure if that changes the goals of my blog, and with that it’s direction. Do I keep pushing to make it better? Of course. Do I know what a ‘better blog’ even means? I’m not so sure, as lately, it seems that SOME of the hottest blogs aren’t necessarily the best ones, and best, well, that’s subjective.

So please bear with me. I’m very sorry for this absence. I haven’t forgotten about IFB, and I certainly haven’t forgotten about the community. It just feels like there’s a lot of cleaning house with my own fashion blog that needs to be done, and with that, I feel that it’s hard to blog authentically about fashion blogging when I’m not even sure where it’s going.

Do you have any idea? I’d really, truly would appreciate your wisdom now…

And if you’re interested in contributing posts to IFB, please email me jennine (at) heartifb.com

Image by subtleromance  / CC BY 2.0

Comments

  1. hanako66 says:

    That’s really interesting. I was exposed to some of these “famous” blogs only recently via Spring NY Fashion Week coverage and magazine and television exposure. When I started my blog, my goal was simply to archive my style, discuss things that I love, and hopefully meet some cool people along the way. While I have no illusions of grandeur in becoming “famous,” I do find that I am now undergoing a redesign, posting outfit posts more frequently, and trying to think of clever posts. I think that it’s natural to hope to be well received and to hope for some level of popularity, but there are very few that will reach that level of “star status.”

    haha…I just realized that I totally did not answer your question, but those are my thoughts!
    .-= hanako66´s last blog ..Etsy Wednesday – baby it’s cold outside =-.

  2. You just, very eloquently, voiced exactly how i’ve been feeling over the last few months. There is some strange catty competition happening which, I suspect, can be born from discouragement that sometimes your best work doesn’t get the recognition it deserves, while some model who looks good in a paper sack is getting 300 comments on her uniform cut-offs /blazer combo and gets invited to collaborate on a line with your favorite designer.

    What would be wisest to concentrate on, is staying loyal to our voices and our personal style and promote it the best that we can. Do it for the love of it, not the recognition. Because what is a blog anyway? Its an online representation of who you are. No stat can change that.

    Thanks Jennine!

  3. Mer says:

    I feel guilty, because I didn’t had the time to finnish my article, but I will.

    On Wednesday I was interviewed and asked about my view on blogging and how everything is changing.

    I realized while I was talking, that of course, like you said, something changed. The “blogger-celebrity” for example, has nothing to do with the independent blogger from 3 years ago, and so much with the same old song of mass media. Before were models on covers, then movie celebrities….and then… the bloggers came.

    Is it wrong? Of course not, and it may be fun. We just need to realize it is important to make us lots of questions not to loose perspective on this…
    .-= Mer´s last blog ..Un viernes oscuro (Dark friday) =-.

  4. Alicia says:

    Truthfully, Im wondering the same thing about my blog…then I remember that I just wanted a place to post what was going on in my life and in my head. I wasn’t aiming to be a star blogger when I started, and I won’t make that my aim now. Purpose and intent get lost in constantly changing directions at the whims of the blogging world and it’s ever-changing standards.
    .-= Alicia´s last blog ..Superfresh 002: Stuff I =-.

  5. Amelia M says:

    I felt insufficient (and occassionally inclined to roll my eyes) more often before I started my blog than I do now that I have one – but I’m only at the start of that journey so I guess there’s plenty more time!
    You’ve created a real sense of community here at IFB, and The Coveted is such a solid, great blog – they really stand alone quite well. It would be a real shame if you left either behind. But I guess I would condone taking a conscious break from it if you’re feeling lost; one with a deadline, of course. There’s a different feeling to a break where you give yourself permission to not do anything, to one where you’re beating yourself up for not doing anything – the latter can really stifle creativity.
    I think there really is an important place for the non-’famous’ fashion bloggers. An analogy can be drawn to music – the famous singers aren’t necessarily the best; those that make something unique and inspired aren’t necessarily famous. But there’s a place for both of them.
    .-= Amelia M´s last blog ..Recently in real life: Berlin =-.

  6. IdStyle says:

    I think that as with most things, there is usually a devide between the “commercial” and “independent” sectors. I know I am new to this arena in general, but I think there will always be a place for independent bloggers (just like other medias). Although there are giant blockbuster movies, there is still a market for independant low-budget movies and both produce great and terrible products from time to time.

    I think the important thing is (as with everything we do in life) to do it for yourself. Produce something that makes you happy, if it makes one reader happy or thousands, what is the difference if you do it for you? and if you would like to make a living off it, they say, do what you love and the money will follow, right?

    I have no idea what is considered a successful blog, is it fame, is it a wide readership, or a loyal and commited readership, or just putting somthing out there that entertains / informs someone or simply just something you are proud of?? When i started I tried to figure out when I would consider myself to be a success in this arena and I couldn’t come up with anything tangible. So far, blogging has not brought me any amount of fame or fortune, but i really love doing it and I try to create posts I would want to read and maybe that’s all I need for now… but also, maybe someday it will bring something else…

    But I am still NEW and maybe I am just on a honeymoon high with fashion blogging. But posts like the IFB one on “comparing your blog to others” and the community in general has been a pretty good support system to keep me enthusiastic through the first year…
    .-= IdStyle´s last blog ..Infatuation List: Five Fall Fashion Favorites =-.

  7. “Today, in the community, there certainly seems to be an element of wanting to be a star, and if you’re not a star, your blog is somehow not successful. … there seems to be something tense in the air between those who get attention and those who do not.”

    Yes, yes, yes.
    .-= Ev`Yan || apricot tea.´s last blog ..fashion is poison, & a chance to meet your favorite fashion bloggers. =-.

  8. Dani says:

    “Truthfully, Im wondering the same thing about my blog…then I remember that I just wanted a place to post what was going on in my life and in my head.”….

    i couldn’t have said that better myself. It’s easy to get overwhelmed trying to “keep up”…and blogging started to become a chore. I realized that instead of posting what I loved, i was racing to get up posts in effort to grow my readership and compete with the “big guns”.

    I started my blog to combine my two passions: fashion, and writing. And yes, to “get to fashion week”. And while I’d love to sit down the row from Wintour, that wasn’t my goal. I’m happy to stand in back and watch from the risers. I just want to be there, take in the atmosphere, and enjoy the clothes.

    Everything else is a perk, and is humbly appreciated… but not needed or required. I’m grateful for every opportunity that comes my way….and fine with the ones that don’t.
    .-= Dani´s last blog ..Ri-Ri VS. Gaga =-.

  9. Christy says:

    I just started my blog about 2 months ago and for me it is less about getting fame and more about gaining recognition for the effort I put into it. I know that my blog isn’t very sophisticated or professional but I’d like to think that I am representing southern fashion in all its incarnations to the best of my ability.
    .-= Christy´s last blog ..Slow Southern News =-.

  10. Michelle says:

    I agree with you, Jennine. I think a lot of people see the media coverage that bloggers are getting now and think “Oh, I want THAT.” but don’t want to work to obtain it. Thus, negativity.

    I don’t have any goals or delusions about being a “star” blogger, I think my target audience is too small to do that. I do what I do & write what I write because it makes me happy.
    .-= Michelle´s last blog ..Rene Geneva Designs =-.

  11. totally my head space too right now. I’m a fashion promotion student, and seem to be taking up all the offers thrown at me via the blog, because it’s great for my “career”, it’s all experience and being better known helps me with that, but it’s tough toeing the line between what is seen as being “commercial” and the reason people read my blog in the first place. It’s hard to say what exactly i’m aiming for. thanks for this post, i’m sure it’s going to raise some fabulous points : )
    .-= carrie / wishwishwish´s last blog ..The Winner of the Tatty Devine Brooch, Sponsored by VoucherCodes.co.uk =-.

  12. So true indeed and I love that you can admit that you’re human and not about wanting or thinking about the limelight. This is certainly something that gets thrown around in my mind in regards to my blog. I started out just wanting to write more about fashion and with the ebbs and flows of fashion blogging, it seems that community has gotten more cliquey and superficial…and sometimes I feel on the outskirts of it all.

    Plus I think all the “famous” blogging press is generating a ton of copy cat blogs whose only sole purpose is to get famous through their blogs. When I feel a bit down or envious, I just try to focus on what makes me different and know that having handful of great readers that contribute is better than 100 that have nothing to contribute to the conversation or short-lived press.
    .-= Fajr| Stylish Thought´s last blog ..What I Wore | Feels Like Fall =-.

  13. Lilly says:

    Hi everybody!

    I guess, we are all hard working on good posts and to improve our blog to appeal to our readers. Sometimes I feel guilty how many time I spent in front of the PC, skipping from blog to blog or collecting new pictures. And you quickly start to feel responsible towards your readers if you are not blogging for a few days.
    Recently, I am happy when one of my friends told me: “I love to look at the pictures in your blog. I had no idea so many beautiful things are inside you!”. It made me smile. That is what we should be blogging for: ourselves, our friends, our readers (no matter how many) and for everything we LOVE.
    The question you have to ask yourself is, if you still enjoy blogging…not if people think you are a famous blogger.
    A disturbing fact I realized is that some girls blogging start to uncover their private lifes in detail more and more and get high numbers of comments and readers for that: I saw girls posting themselves dancing in supershort nighties, posing half-naked in bed with their boyfriend or even topless in front of a mirror…to keep their readers, they will even have to top that in future. Is that the kind of fame we want?
    Everyone should define his/her own terms of ‘success’ and stick to it.
    Love, Lilly
    .-= Lilly´s last blog ..J’aimerais tellement by Jena Lee =-.

  14. Emily says:

    My inspiration for starting my blog, was actually essentially an outlet for expressing and developing my love for fashion and writing. Although I knew through my cousin mutually a “famous blogger” and was inspired by her success and achievements, that wasn’t what motivated me to begin blogging. Blogging for me is a way to show the world MY fashion sense and my thoughts; exactly an online open diary. As others have said I thought “wow wouldn’t it be amazing if I were at fashion week?” I didn’t care if it was by volunterring or actually being asked to attend the show via invitation -just being there would be awesome :) now after blogging for over nearly a year and a half, I’m very happy with the goals and achievements which I have attained and I think it is important to emphasise the significance that every fashion blogger is of course an individual and hence would achieve different things in different amounts of time and that by cimparing yourself to other more ‘famous’ fashion bloggers and perhaps getting jealous would not be helpful for you, your readers or for your reputation. Fashion bloggers are a relatively close knit community through facebook, forums such as IFB, twitter etc and it should always be that we support one another (that is not to say we aren’t entitled to our own opinions on whatever controversial issue, that is the point of a blog to express one’s self)
    I have made quite a few blogger friends over my short period blogging and appreciate every friendship and opportunity i have made/achieved.
    We have come a long way from the 90′s and it is wonderful that we can discuss issue like this on IFB (thanks jennine yay hahah)
    Keep writing what makes you happy and don’t get intimidated or put off by any challenges you face along the way as a fashion blogger! :)
    .-= Emily´s last blog ..Lookbook style roundup =-.

  15. Anna Jane says:

    I admit that I’m still a newbie to the whole fashion blog thing. I have been involved with other blogging communities before now however, and I have to say there is always a sense of resentment and competition. It’s natural. Yes, it can be annoying, and you can find yourself holding a grudge, but I don’t think it’s anything to feel threatened about or get worked up over.

    I think if you just remember why you initially started your blog and what your initial goals were, then you don’t need to worry about other blog authors becoming more successful than you.

    Personally, I started my blog because I wanted somewhere to write creatively. Not only that, but I wanted to write about my biggest passion in life: fashion. I write mainly for those I know personally; those who encourage and compliment my writing skills, and those who want me to fulfill my dreams of writing my very own fashion column. Of course, if I manage to capture a decent amount of interest from around the online community as well, that’s great. I’m just not going to beat myself up about it if I don’t have the most popular blog out there. As long as I’m putting in the effort, I feel satisfied.

    As for all the popular fashion blogs…. I’ve seen a good handful of them and I have to say the ones I’ve seen definitely deserve their successes, or so I believe.
    .-= Anna Jane´s last blog ..Ch..Ch..Check it out: this season’s shirt =-.

  16. Leah says:

    It’s been really interesting to read all the comments, because everyone seems to have a variety of thoughts. This has been something that I’ve been really struggling with for the past few months (I basically didn’t post for the entire summer period because I felt so delusional with regards to blogging/fashion in general) and have only really started to ‘resolve’ in my own mind. The thing that made me feel more inclined to blog was by thinking back to why exactly I started blogging and what it is I want from it now. For me personally, it stems from the fact that I have always wanted to pursue my childhood dream of designing clothes and blogging just seemed like a way of experiencing a completely different perspective to the one in magazines. Or at least, the magazines I read at 15 when I started blogging (we’re talking ’06, though, like you, I really don’t want to say “back then it was like this…”). Starting as a teen blogger, I guess a lot of it for me was “finding myself” or something like that, but of course, we’re always trying to discover a new aspect of “who we are/our style” etc etc – or at least I am. I’m blogging now because I’m eager to learn more, document more, share more and it doesn’t hurt to do so given that I am following the educational path towards fashion design anyway.

    Everyone has different motives for starting blogs. Yes, there are some who start because they want stardom or fortune, despite the reality of hard work (in fact, I’m certain it’d probably be quicker/easier to go on something like a reality tv show to achieve fame and fortune). In much the same way that fashion blogging encompasses a huge range of topics (vintage fashion, high fashion, street style, outfits, diy and so forth), I guess bloggers are going to have a huge range of reasons and interests when they start a blog and naturally, this evolves as the blog grows. It the whole thing of simultaneously wanting to be an individual and wanting to conform to be ‘accepted’.

    One question I was recently asked by a fashion journalism student was whether I thought blogging had an unlimited future. I answered no. Simply because, as much as I like blogs, we have no idea where technology is going to go in the future. And since blogs are the result of technological changes, I cannot say for certain that it, as a medium, will exist indefinitely. Fashion blogging, in fact fashion world as a whole, is evolving and changing constantly and bloggers, whether ‘famous’ or not, will eventually find their ‘place’ in the spectrum. I suppose, at the end of the day, everyone wants their opinion to matter and their voice to be heard – and there will always be, without doubt, a platform on which to do that.
    .-= Leah´s last blog ..Boo! =-.

  17. Steff says:

    This is weird because I just wrote a random/indirect little post on my blog yesterday about this topic. I started my blog to brush up my writing skills and to hope that, by posting clothes I wanted, I wouldn’t buy them and would just be happy looking at archive of these pretty pictures. Now that I’ve gotten a nice few dozen readers daily (many thanks to IFB) and a couple of claims that I’m one of the ‘best’ blogs, I was wondering to myself if my goal has changed to become the next Queen Michelle or not. Sure, I’m jealous she gets tons of free clothing, gets to collaborate with designers, and gets pieces named after her. But really, that’s not what I signed up for, and so I’ll just leave my blog to be what I originally wanted it to be. Except I’m buying the clothes in the pictures anyway. Oh, and I’m going to stay away from blogging about blogging. It’s too difficult to make even a coherent short post like my post yesterday. And I’m sure my readers just want to see the pretty pictures.
    .-= Steff´s last blog ..2nd time’s a charm… =-.

  18. Avatar of Jennine Jacob
    Jennine says:

    Oh my goodness, I’m overwhelmed, and delighted about the thoughtful commentary that’s here, it’s really great to see everyone’s different perspectives…

    ❤ amber, i agree that it’s important to stick to your original vision, i think often times it evolves with your voice and practice.
    ❤ mer, exactly, it’s hard not to be affected, and there is nothing wrong with changing, it’s just keeping perspective
    ❤ alicia, yep, it’s hard to have a vision when you’re constantly following changes!
    ❤ amelia, what an inspiring comment, thank you..and you’re absolutely right there is room for everyone, particularly with the blogging medium….
    ❤ idstyle, i think a successful blog is one that you enjoy doing
    ❤ dani…keeping up can be a tough task, it’s always best to go at a comfortable rate, that with a healthy push
    ❤ christy, i’m glad you started!
    ❤ decline, heh, it is usually the ones who don’t do the work that have the most hostility
    ❤ carrie, i have to face that challenge with my blog too, it’s a nice problem to have, but it’s certianly a challenge.
    ❤ fajr, exactly, we each have our own thing that makes us differnt, better to focus on that!
    ❤ lily, oh my goodness, i dont think i’ve ever seen those pics!
    ❤ emily, well said!
    ❤ anna jane, you are right, many of the really successful ones really do have the amazing stuff, so their success is well deserved
    ❤ leah, this comment coudl be it’s own post.. it’s so true, that its probaby easier to get fame from reality tv, blogging takes a lot of time and dedication. and does blogging have a future? it does have so much to do with technology, it certainly makes for an uncertian one if you think about it.
    ❤ steff, yeah, it’s a tough balance!

  19. Rhiannon says:

    “I don’t want to say, ‘back when I first started blogging, it was like this…’ ”

    Ha ha, it’s so true, though! It makes me feel like such an old lady, thinking back on what the blogging scene was like in 2007, but didn’t it seem so much more tightly-knit and fun then? It’s so different now. I think the problem for me is that the gap between the magazine/print and blogging world is narrowing . . . . Magazine websites all have their standard chatty blogs now, trying to seem more personal and accessible and maybe less stuffy, and then bloggers are just taking better pictures, getting more inside scoops, making their blogs more professional. It takes away from the quirky, individual charm of fashion blogs!

    I don’t have any suggestions for you because I’m in the same boat. Sometimes it’s scary to post just because the whole blogging world is more competitive now, glamorous and more industry-fueled, and I wonder why on earth someone would care what a girl in Atlanta is wearing or wanting to wear. . . . I’m more afraid to make mistakes than I was in ’07, which I guess is why I had more outfit posts then, even if a lot of times they were silly and completely experimental.

    Oh, depressing comment, I know. But I’m so glad you posted on this!

  20. I find that blogging can get sort of depressing at times, since I see someone’s blog, and they have more than ten thousand followers, hundreds of comments on every post, news paper articles, you get the idea. Then I start wondering why am I doing this?

    I think it is up to every blogger to decide where they are going, and we can’t let ourselves be driven by what drives other people. Yes, it would be kinda cool to be famous, but I’m perfectly happy as an anonymous blogger, with a few readers, a few comments per post, and no real pressure. Maybe some day Through the Wilderness will be something bigger, but for now, my blog title describes not only my life, but it’s future: it isn’t all the clear.
    .-= Rosie Unknown´s last blog ..What I Wore: Bleu et Or (Blue and Gold) =-.

  21. WendyB says:

    Great post. And keep doing what you’re doing here because it’s great. And I’ll rough you up if you quit.
    .-= WendyB´s last blog ..Jimmy Choo for H&M and … Duck! =-.

  22. Franca says:

    Great post Jennine!

    This is really timely for me actually. I’ve been blogging for about a year, but in the last two month my readership has really grown and I’ve been getting some media coverage here in Scotland. On the back of this, I had an offer to go on tv and its seemed like if I pushed it, I had a chance of becoming ‘famous’ (at a local level only, obviously). I thought long and hard about it what I wanted, but in the end decided that the reason I had got into blogging in the first place was to have fun, build relationships with other bloggers and share things I like, and if I tried to have some sort of media career, it would become work and I would lose the enjoyment. Obviously I do want to develop, improve and grow my blog, but at my own pace, and I actually have no desire whatsoever to leave my day job and to turn blogging into a career. I had to remind myself of that, because when opportunities come along, it’s very easy to get seduced.

    Another thought: I wonder if there is a difference between proper fashion blogs and those that are more personal style and/or craft related? I would consider myself part of the latter group and have never come into contact with any of the negativity you get in the fashion blogging world, where all the ‘celebrities’ seem to come from.
    .-= Franca´s last blog ..Giveaway winner and award =-.

  23. KB says:

    Such a great post and so many interesting comments to read! I’ve been blogging for a year now, not necessarily to jump on the bandwagon but to have my own personal outlet on the internet. I wasn’t sure if people were reading at first, but this didn’t necessarily bother me as I just wanted to concentrate on making it as strong as it could be. Now I’m getting approached by all sorts of companies and am having to come up with some kind of ‘ethics’ regarding this, trying to pursue things that I like and not just because I’m greedy. I guess this sort of thing will happen more, but I’m feeling that the community aspect is getting better through twitter etc. I was a solitary blogger but now I’m starting to meet more faces behind the blogs and am enjoying getting to know some like-minded people who live in London (and hopefully New York when I move there). I think I’ve found some people who don’t necessarily want to be ‘stars’ but are in it for the right reasons. It is those people who will keep me on the dtraight and narrow.
    .-= KB´s last blog ..The many faces of Somerset House =-.

  24. KIRAFASHION says:

    Jennine,

    I really know how you feel and I feel the same way. I am really happy when a see a very good blog being successful, although I don’t feel the same when I see a blog not so well done being successful. However, at the end, I think only the really good ones remains…that’s what I hope.

    Congratulations for your great work at this community,
    I think that you questions and answers really make the difference for all of us :)

    Many kisses,
    Kira
    .-= KIRAFASHION´s last blog ..MY NEW CANON =-.

  25. MsCheap says:

    I’m relatively new to blogging (since July) and it seems to me that blogging has become much more prevalent since it started to become ingrained in the public consciousness. The Tavi-mania at NYFW being a good example.
    While a lot of people do blog to earn notoriety,make a name or just to up an already existing social profile, there are a lot of people who see it as a trend like leggings or snoods who end up starting a blog just to abandon it a month later when they discover that, if a blogs worth doing, it’s worth doing well.
    It’s easy to get discouraged when you have an established blog but are suddenly joined by contemporaries who have derivative and sloppy content, where facts aren’t checked and photos aren’t credited. It’s equally discouraging as a baby blogger like myself learning along the way to start out and find yourself awash in a sea of blogs, wondering if anyone will see yours, and if they do, whether they will like it. Even if you’re not online specifically to gain a name, a friendly word is always appreciated.
    Hopefully, the blogmania has reached or will reach a peak soon, and the long tail of blog will start to die off. The percentage of all blogs that have been abandoned range somewhere between 45% (conservative) to up to 95% (downright scary). There’s a post on The Guardian here that I read just before I started my blog. Perhaps what it predicts will come true and all the hype will die off within the next year or so.

  26. Miss Elle says:

    Thanks for saying this. It needed to be said. Some of the most popular fashion blogs out there right now are some of the worst. There’s no effort, just chance and placement. It’s unfortunate.
    .-= Miss Elle´s last blog ..Be My Paper Doll with M641 =-.

  27. dawn says:

    Jennine -

    I’ve been reading blogs of all kinds for a long time. I’ve found that the “it” blogs tend to lose something over time. Just like the it club, or the it bag, or the it girl. They fade.

    Personally, you (and a few others) inspired me to start a vanity blog. And you know what, I’ve heard from a few moms (my target audience) that I’ve inspired them to try something new. Trickle down blogging, I suppose.

    I think the divide is really between those who want to be famous, those who want to be journalists and those who just write to share their thoughts. It’s an individual decision and more commonly, a job. And with all jobs there are coat tail riders, whiners and hard workers. Good news is the coat tailers tend lose their luster, the whiners get fired and the hard workers persevere.

  28. Erica Sanae says:

    Hi Jennine, (and the rest of the IFB community),

    Yes I agree- this is definitely a very interesting time for me to read your post. I guess it’s nice to know that we’re all not feeling this alone, there’s something comforting in the solidarity of everyone’s comments. Though I am a relatively new blogger and even newer member of the IFB community, I wanted to give a little insight from my point of view.

    I am a working fashion/wardrobe stylist who has also been in the fashion industry for about 10 years. I started my blog as a way to publish my ideas, thoughts, and inspirations on fashion and life. Before starting my blog, I rarely searched out and explored many new blogs, but instead read a select few and stuck with those. Upon starting my blog, I branched out to see what else there was out there, and was amazed by all of the many many many fashion blogs, sometimes seeming all too similar, while also stumbling across a few gems along the way.

    I really feel that fashion blogging has come a long way. As a stylist or designer, there was, until now, there was a sort of set ladder to climb to score jobs and collaborations with stores, ad campaigns, lookbooks, and fashion companies. There is a definite shift happening, and well-known bloggers are now skipping past the hoops and ropes to attain a faster rate of success.

    For me, not only am i susceptible to the shared feeling of insufficiency from “competing” with other blogs (which I’m okay with since I’m still relatively new), but also realize I am competing on a professional level with these blogs as the number of candidates for a styling job are infinitely larger with the introduction of bloggers to the pool. It feels strange to witness firsthand these changes taking place- but I really like how in-touch it really makes me feel with the fashion industry itself.

    Keep up the great work, and I hope you continue to be inspired, no matter the format it is conveyed.

  29. dreamsequins says:

    Wait– you mean I won’t get a modeling contract or book deal out of my blog? Game over then. ;)

    I feel like I’ve lost my way, too– as my blog has subtly shifted in content since I started. I think it’s nice to take a step back and take a breather from blogging or thinking about blogging. Reassess goals, values, etc.
    .-= dreamsequins´s last blog ..Sticky Fingers: America’s Most Stolen Items =-.

  30. crosby says:

    A few additional thoughts – Is it credibility or celebrity? I think for those of use who have been doing this for a few years, (2006 what what!!), we began with a desire to share a point of view, often into this black hole of internet-land, and we were enlivened to discover a small, international community of other fashion bloggers with a similar passion for expression though this new self-publishing medium.

    Now, it is a place online that is actively courted/monitored by brands, and we share online fashion media with the voice of mass media. When fashion bloggers are featured in print journalism as trend-setters and style-gurus – we know we have experienced a dramatic shift in the traditional/online and the future of fashion journalism, ie as blogging gains in legitimacy, it also attracts those who were always legitimate within the fashion industry, which changes the game.

    So blogging/blogger outreach becomes almost a must-do for anyone looking to establish a voice within the industry, something recommended to designers and larger brands, and we start to see bloggers being courted, and offered amazing opportunities, both for their talent as well as because there is a current “it” factor and/or because it is considered “hip” and ahead of the curve to work with bloggers.

    The result is that fashion blogging is no longer an effective umbrella term. We’ve hit the front page. For me, the struggle has something to do with an commercial industry that seems to have difficulty separating quality fashion blogs with a truly unique voice and genuine aesthetic and content, from the thousands of other fashion blogs with no discernible perspective. It seems where there was once a more equal playing field, there is now a tendency favoring a certain type of (thin, pretty, well-connected) blogger, and it feels like I am once again pulled toward fighting against the hegemony of the fashion industry, while also hoping to someday make it on the magical list that brings us the bounty so that I can continue to educate and share my voice and perspective with others – ideally as my job, and not as something I do until 2 am after working a full day. It is not unlike the rather tenuous relationship I have with the fashion industry as a whole, actually.
    .-= crosby´s last blog ..Top Fashion PR/Marketing/Social Media Links =-.

  31. AsiaA says:

    Great post!

    I started my blog because I was a fashion student trying to keep my hand tool sharpened, so to speak. I think the most I wanted from the blog was a solid base of followers. People who understood my fashion sensibility. Or those who were slightly clueless or didn’t have to confidence to dress their best. I wanted to help those people. I don’t want fame. Besides, I’m working on my career. The blog was more or less a hobby.

    Sometimes I read other blogs and think, “Why would someone read my blog when these girls are posting everything on the minute?”. When I started analyzing that, that’s when I got the block. I started second guessing my sense of style. What I thought was “fashionable” or “cool”. Then I was afraid that my blog was going to be redundant. And it doesn’t help when you don’t really have any followers (my blog is still fairly new). My morale was down. Inspiration gone.

    Then I had to think, If I let THIS get me down, how am I going to survive in my industry?

    So, I’m dusting myself off, and getting back on that fashion horse.
    .-= AsiaA´s last blog ..You Know You Want It: Alexander McQueen Lobster Claw Shoes =-.

  32. Julia says:

    Jennine,
    I think you raised some really excellent points that have lead a lot of us in the community to be self-reflective; it’s really easy to get away from what may have been the original intention of starting a blog as the site grows, our lives get increasingly busy, and there is just more to do besides the flow of consciousness, creative aspects of blogging.
    .-= Julia´s last blog ..Forever 21 Pick of the Day: Cable Trim Sweater Cardigan, $22.80 =-.

  33. Margaret says:

    Wow, I really enjoyed this article and I read it just in time, as I begin to think of what I want to do with my blog. I started my blog back in September and since then, its done rather well. I think when it comes to anything, whether blogging, writing, etc., you have to always maintain your vision, regardless of what that vision is. Becoming a celebrity blogger and not blogging about something you are passionate about isn’t true success to me.

    People on here are right. Bloggers are the new thing, a way for PR companies and brands to get that publicity and reach a wider audience and its easy for a blogger to get sucked in as the offers start pouring in. Though I’m relatively new at this, I think all that I can offer is for one not to lose sight of their vision – that is something that no one should be allowed to control.

    btw: If you are looking for inspiration, I have an idea. What is it you truly love? Shoes? Jewelry? etc. When you start with what you love about fashion, inspiration has a way of finding you!

  34. I’ve been thinking about this lately, too, and have even spent some time debating the future of fashion blogging – marketing, “free stuff,” authority – with my boyfriend (who is more opinionated than I expected him to be).

    When our focus drifts to fame and greed, our sites stop seeming so real, or reputable. I know that when I start seeing posts that focus solely on affiliate links and sponsored reviews I being to get suspicious: when did my favorite bloggers stop writing about what they love, with abandon?

    That, in my opinion, will be our big downfall. When we start worrying about who has the most fame or who is getting free stuff, we lose our credibility…and the industry will take back that influence we’ve been given without a second’s thought.

    (In fact, I have a submission for you that I sorely need to write and send in to IFB on this very subject!)
    .-= Jennifer Nicole´s last blog ..Awakened News: Link Love =-.

  35. Great article. This is something that I’ve been thinking a lot about; blogging and it’s presence in pop-culture at the moment, and what lie ahead. Obviously, this past fashion week brought it to a whole other level (magazines coverage, front-row bloggers, etc.) for the most part I agree that the bloggers featured are innovative, unique and have something to contribute. I even felt proud to an extent. Alas, there were several others that really left me at a loss and made me think – “wow, if they can get that level of recognition with this I can only assume if more people knew about “X” blogs they too would get attention”. Some blogs are clearly half-hearted yet they get loads of followers, recognition and vip passes to rtw shows. It’s a hard concept to grasp.

    I mostly wonder what the relationship between blogs, bloggers and their introduction the mainstream will bring? What is the motive of the Fashion (or Advertising) industry? Is it a fad or is there more in store for the community. I’m protective of my relationship to the blogisphere because it has given me endless inspiration as well as a much needed creative outlet that silmply did not exist before my blog. I too have my bad blogger weeks, that unispiration that can creep up but that’s just part of life. We are all “off” occasionally but we can just as easily snap out of it and come back with avengence.

    Whatever the outcome I expect to keep true to my original reasons for blogging until it is no longer fun and inspiring. Whether it brings me fame and runway seats or simple conects me to other creative and inspiring indiviuals.

    keep up the good work. this is a wonderful community to be part of! I only hope I can contribute to it more!
    .-= reckless daughter´s last blog ..minnie in wonderland =-.

  36. I do feel like there is a lot of resentment towards popular bloggers. I think this is because every blogger has their own idea of what a good blog is and when they see blogs that don’t fit their quota reaching the top they become frustrated.

    i personally like blogs that feature lots of DIY clothing and demonstrate how to make the most of what you’ve got. This is because I am not made of money and I appreciate the effort and creativity of girls who mix thrift shop clothing with clothing from regular stores to create a affordable and unique look. I hate to admit that I dislike bloggers like Jane from sea of shoes who has the money to afford expensive clothing and in my opinion has horrible taste in clothing. I try not to judge her because she does take lovely photos and does put effort into her blog… but personally I feel like se doesn’t deserve the recognition that she gets.
    .-= Technosunshine´s last blog ..Plaid Please =-.

  37. Danushi says:

    Interesting article, I was actually surprised to see bloggers in front rows of fashion shows, was unaware of the celebrity around it until recently. And i agree with the above comment, I think slowly i’ve been morphing my blog into the resembling the “popular” ones, then i realised yes i love certain designers but i can’t afford them and from now own will aim to make more me

  38. Sarah K. says:

    This is a very interesting point to bring up!

    I blog because I have that combination of loving fashion and loving to write about fashion, and also wanting to be recognized for what I do.
    For me, it’s a way to be creative with the way I dress and then tell everyone on the internet how I did it. When I write reviews or style musings, it’s a chance for me to tell the world how I feel… and although my blog isn’t celebrity status, I still feel satisfied knowing that I put something out there that anyone can read.

    And while my chances for becoming a blogger-celebrity are slim, I always appreciate it when I see people visiting my page and commenting. I feel like the fashion blogging community is pretty responsive, and it’s easy to build relationships with people through blogging.

    So for me, it’s about publishing myself and building relationships with others that I would not have been able to before. Even if you’re not a blogger-celebrity, it definitely opens you up to a different world.
    .-= Sarah K.´s last blog ..Instead of Studying… =-.

  39. M says:

    The human desire to be recognized and appreciated is everywhere and in everyone, only it varies in the level of what that recognition might be. I have been blogging for about 2 seconds now and I decided to do it because I followed many blogs and though I’d like to share my thoughts as well on all the information I gather from magazines, TV or the internet so I see it mostly as an outlet, like comparing notes with someone, which is fun.
    And yes how amazing to be whisked around fashion weeks and all the other perks, I would love all that for sure however it is not my motivation.
    All the bloggers in the spotlight now are there because of their dedication to their vision whatever that vision might, good or not it’s subjective, the point is their unique view and that’s what I think is what the mainstream fashion industry is tuning into.
    .-= M´s last blog ..The McQueen Shoes =-.

  40. M.E. Ster says:

    My best blogs surprise me…they are silly, and totally authentic. A photo of my collage book, something that truly inspires me. People see through the superficial. Be true to yourself and have fun blogging. Jennine, thanks for the inspiration to do that! M.E.

  41. moehudson says:

    I totally undestand of how you feel. To me bloggers now runs a popularity contest.As long as you’re loud and post out of this world picture profile of yourself you’ll get notice. Not your posting! We can post a brilliant artical with substance but nobody cares! Hot topic often read are sex related topic! This just to get more traffic in!
    Again it’s up to individual blogger of their own person agenda. Blogging now is no longer about personal diary or just for fun. People are taking it to the next level and they are competing!
    Again not about the content of the artical, but who has the best sexy pictures! Who has seen photographed with the whos who in the celebrity world!
    I guessed if the blogger show some skin the more popular he/she is! This is already happening in Asia espacially. Don’t know about the other side of the world. Girls who show skin in their blog and they are celebrity blogger now!
    Fret now my dear! there are still reader who are looking for substance blogs to feel conected to…and one exmple reader is me!
    So continue your good work! Cheers!

  42. BobbinTalk says:

    My personal opinion is that blogging is just another media tool. Nothing changed in the industry of fashion, it’s just that outsiders didn’t know what’s happening, and now they do!

    Pretty models will always be hired to represent new products and clothing lines, because that’s what they get paid for – look pretty in front of the camera. And if “designing” a line brings money to the investor then that’s what they’d be hired for. Don’t worry about them, they drop out of sight as fast as the next one comes up.

    Good writers, real or pseudo celebrities will always get the book deal, nothing new there, blogging is just another PR tool for them!

    The Brianboys were always there, they just didn’t sit front row, but they were there at the VIP after-party you and me couldn’t get into anyway! But now it’s more fashionable and brings more attention to the brand if you feature the famous ones on front row. Tomorrow will be something else! Fashion always looks for new trends…

    As to designers, for every successful designer, there are thousands that didn’t succeed, bloggers or no bloggers present! Do you have any idea how many talented fashion students, journalists, photographers graduate each year all over the world? I do! Thousands and thousands every year. I teach some fashion accessory design classes at Parsons in NYC and I see all the talent that comes out every year and goes to work for $30,000/year for that famous design house everybody loves so much!

    Blogging is so easy it’s just another tool to get your work out there, but not the only way to make it! The successful designers already have the tools to make it big, $$, PR connections, family ties in the industry, or are good with building a real business from the ground up! Is that you? If it isn’t then don’t complain about not making it. If it is, then just do what you do best and try to do it better every day! You will succeed!

    Oh yeah and I did get a book deal, not because of my blogging skills, but because I wrote a proposal and had countless meetings for about a year, wrote a sample chapter, went through a review process and about a year and a half later got a miniscule advance to write a 400 page textbook! That’s not easy either!

    I started blogging because I have access to great talent and love giving them a platform to feature their work, and I am in front of the computer all the time anyway, so why not?

    As to everybody else? Concentrate on what you do best! There are bloggers like you Jeannine, who are amazing at bringing people together, there are others who are great at styling and posing in front of the camera, and then there are the ones who are just popular no matter what! Who are you and what do you do best?
    .-= BobbinTalk´s last blog ..The Mad Tailor =-.

  43. susie_bubble says:

    For some reason, I’ve only discovered this post now *slaps wrist* for not being more down with IFB posts!
    I’ve been reading with much interest because this is something that has been PLAGUING me for months now….questions of “Where this is all going?” and me feeling like this is all a bit insane…. I am sitting on the fence though because some people would say that I am one of those so-called ‘popular’ blogs (though in truth, how does one measure this because I really don’t think there’s any concrete/hard way of doing it….) but I also believe that it is the fault of the media that has warped people’s perceptions into thinking their blog may not be up to scratch or leave people wanting more…

    I really do believe, after much thought, that this will all die down within the next year and that the REAL wheat will be separate from the chaff….i.e. those with tenacity, patience and good quality content will prevail and whilst they may not have 100′s and 100′s of comments, they are garnering readership slowly and gradually, as well as being integrated into communities like these…. Jennine, The Coveted I think is a perfect example….

    There’s no point in comparing stats, comments, media attention and I’ve learnt just to go about my own way and blog the way I want to blog, the way that makes me feel happy… a trite and cliched ending but it really is as simple as that….

  44. LaTicia says:

    Hi, my name is LaTicia Lock. I really love fashion, and I’m trying to start a blog, but I have no idea where to start. I was hoping I could write for you and you could show me the ropes to having a well-put together fashion blog. Thank you ver much. My email address is laticialock@live.com. Please let me know what you think.

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