Go For The Gold: Take Your Outfit Posts To The Next Level
By: Taylor Davies

next_level_bloggers
Follow on Bloglovin
Pinterest

You guys, I’m bored.

I read so many style blogs everyday, and maybe it’s my own fault, but most of them are just running together into one big blur of turn to the left, turn to the right, look down, pretend to laugh. You all look beautiful, and your style is inspiring – but I want more. I want different. I want better.

Do you know what the kicker is, though? I include my own blog in this jumble of blah. I feel like much of the time, I’m not bringing anything new and exciting to the table, and that is disappointing. After all, if I’m speaking to all of you as a voice of advice, encouragement and tough love through IFB, shouldn’t I be taking a dose of my own medicine?

Absolutely. So let’s do this together, shall we? Because it’s Olympics time, we’re going to go for the gold. The gold of blogging. No more boring!

There are few blogs out there right now that have me compulsively checking in for a new post. I’ve found that the ones I keep tabs on currently are bringing something more to the table than solo shots on an abandoned street and Polyvore sets of items you’re trying to earn a dime off of through affiliate links. We all have to make choices about what to share online and what to keep private, and that’s fine. But when I see great looks in the context of an event or occasion, a cool location (with images you’re not even in) or shots with friends and family – I think it adds so much interest and edge. If you’re putting yourself out there on the Internet, why not put just a little more of yourself out there, besides your latest purchase?

Here are three ways to add interest and depth to your outfit posts that you can implement and execute before the closing ceremonies:

1. Give context.

  • Oh, you’re wearing stiletto pumps and jeans shorts with a slouchy sweater and gigantic sunglasses? Cool. Why?! Outfit images are great, but giving a little context as to why you’re wearing what you’re wearing will inspire your readers (and possibly motivate them further to use your affiliate links, if that’s a goal of yours). How much to write is totally up to you. Maybe you have a great story from the brunch you attended in this outfit. Maybe boyfriend jeans are your go-to on the weekends for X, Y, and Z reasons. Adding a little dash of your personality and your life to your posts will set you apart, invite your readers in, and keep them coming back for more. (And don’t be afraid to be funny, either!)

2. Seek out interesting locations.

  • Please, please leave your driveway. I guarantee that no matter where you live, whether its the depths of Brooklyn, the middle of Missouri or a remote town in Sweden – there are beautiful, interesting, scenic locations just waiting to be photographed. Sure, it’s ideal to go on vacation or travel and take outfit photos from exotic places – but it’s not required. Get in your car, hop on your bicycle, trot a few long blocks in those stilettos and shorts! Look for details, cool architecture, parks, shops, beaches, and paint a complete picture for your readers. Say you’re just getting dressed for lunch down the street. Why not hold off on the Instagram of your BLT and show your readers the restaurant? The street it’s on? Is your hostess totally street style worthy? Think outside the box and outside your zip code!

3. Add elements of lifestyle.

  • Stylish people travel in packs. Odds are if you dress well, your friends do too. Or maybe your boyfriend. Or your sister. In the same way that your life is made sweeter in the company of friends, your blog posts can enjoy a bit of the same. Does every post have to be you and your girls on your way to da club? Of course not. But it’s fun to give a little peek into your life and the people who fill it. If you’re sort of a lone wolf, share images, stories, meals, shopping, whatever – from your solitary adventures. A trip to the farmers market, a hike into nearby foothills, a picnic on the beach – sharing the day-to-day moments that are the very catalyst for why you get dressed each day will add depth and personality to your blog – in the best way.

For inspiration on these types of posts, I recommend Classy Girls Wear Pearls, The Glamourai, Style & Pepper, The Sea of Fertility, Cheetah is the New Black, Pizza Rulez, Wonder Girl and Closet Freaks.

 

Do you incorporate any of these elements in your personal style posts? Which do you think add the most to your blog?

Comments

  1. Natasha says:

    Thanks again for another thoughtful post. I totally agree, I look at so many beautiful blogs and bloggers everyday – and I comment regularly, but there are only so many times I can say “You look great” – and I’m in that mix too, there needs to be something that makes one’s material different.

    I really try to vary up the locations for where I take pictures. There is a rotation of photographers to help me out. And lately I’ve been thinking about incorporating more of my Indian/South Asian clothing into the blog. I have a whole second wardrobe of Asian clothes, why not incorporate them? So thanks for the push. :)

    • Avatar of Bellachicstyle.com

      I enjoyed reading this post and found it informative as I’m always searching for ways to improve readership while keeping the audience interested and coming back. I would appreciate more posts like this!
      blog: Bellachicstyle.com

  2. Cheryl says:

    I think that from the start, I have taken this approach. I even started a series with my husband’s style as well as our couple style. I want to start incorporating my kids’ style a little more also since they are quite stylish. Thanks for the affirmation that just being me is ok; because I have my moments where I don’t know if I’m doing it “right”.

  3. I agree with you… beautiful outfits are great, but it’s always better to add some context. Sometimes I see outfits out there and think… “where did they went with it? Did they really go to work wearing that? I wish I had that job!”…
    I always try to add context or a theme to my outfits, so the photos have a little more magic to them. And I’ve already convinced my sister and my boyfriend to appear in my blog too (it was hard to convince them, but I’m glad I did… because the posts turned out really cute and I’m proud of them).
    I hope lots of bloggers take your advice… and me, I’ll try even harder to make everything even more interesting!
    Thanks for sharing!
    Love, Pi*

  4. Katie Lee says:

    This is so true, thank you for the advice. I am getting tired of style blogs as well, it is because they are so repetitious. but the ones I truly love are those that are unique!!

  5. Toni Styles says:

    Amazing advice! This is sure to inspire all who read it.

    What a treat it would be to see more and learn more about the blogger you are so obsessed with – or even better give that gift to your own readers. :)

    http://rhythmandruffle.com <3

  6. This is actually interesting. This is kind of how my blog began and now I’m trying to get it back to that. I’ve just been too busy to really take the time for photos. Hopefully, I’ll be back on track soon :) Also, personally, those types of blogs are also the ones that I find more interesting.

    ♥ Megann of Style Surgery

  7. Avatar of emilyjenny
    emilyjenny says:

    Love the advice given in this piece. I try my best to incorporate as much of my daily life and happenings without giving away TOO much of my personal life.

    Check out my recent post which pays homage to the woman who takes all my photos…my MOTHER! I think it is exactly what this post is referring to!

    xo
    Emily Jenny

    http://www.stilettobeats.com/

  8. Avatar of Marla Brum
    Marla Brum says:

    Definitely something I’m working on myself. I was totally the one standing in the driveway all the time (Sigh) hahah now I’m working with a photographer (not my bf) and I’m excited to spice them up!! thanks for more great advice xx

    Marla
    http://www.trendstruck.com

  9. Heather says:

    Well, I hate to toot my own horn because it’s rather tacky, but if you want personal style photos with a twist, in an interesting setting with some story behind the photos please visit my blog, because that’s what you’ll see. I have no backyard so the photos are almost always in an unusual setting, and my husband takes the photos while we’re out anyway so what we’re doing, why and where are usually touched on.

    But I do agree with you, I’m find a lot of personal style. Logs rather repetitive and boring, even if theyre gorgeous, which is why I try to make mine as I interesting as I can.

  10. Avatar of monja
    monja says:

    thank you for the advice, sometimes you don’t really think.
    I love this website, but I really feel like you need a good camera to be able to take great pics. Ive found iPhone and my compact camera a great use, but if you want to take it to the next level i feel like you’ll have to have great sharp, interesting photos.
    Thnak you for this post once again it does really help

  11. Kristine says:

    Great tips!! I’ve been in a sorta blogging rut lately, since im not exactly happy with how i run my blog! Its always felt a little stereotypical and predictable! I think ill use these tips with others to bring to my a game! :) thanks!!!

  12. Avatar of thorunni
    thorunni says:

    awesome advice!! just a good thing to always remember to tell a story with your outfits because there is always a special occasion or something that you really enjoy wearing only on the weekends haha

  13. irais says:

    I loved this post!… Right now I am doing a personal style blog, because I am mexican girl living in Brisbane, Australia… so I’m trying to show my daily outfits with my point of view about Australia… I believe it is kind of different, and I really like it, I hope my readers too.

  14. Avatar of Meghan Andrea

    I actually just started my blog in April! As a matter of fact, my last post was……IN MY DRIVEWAY. ha! I found this article veryyyy interesting because it’s always fun to learn new facts and ideas for your own personal blog! I will take this advice and use it to my advantage! We have to start somewhere, right?

    http://styleforbreakfast.blogspot.com

  15. Sera McDaid says:

    Unfortunately, as explained in my blog’s about me, I’m agoraphobic. It’s such an achievement for me to make it to my driveway lol so yeah….. a tad impossible at this moment in time. But good luck in your challenge. I personally don’t mind seeing bloggers in their gardens / against one wall in their house. I’m interested in what they have to say and what they’re wearing. Nine times out of ten I don’t even notice the background even when they’re somewhere exotic.
    Because I chose to blog in the way I do, I’m all over the personal approach, whether it’s talking about the ootd or my latest mental health struggles, it’s all talked about.

    Thanks for this post, made for interesting reading xx

  16. Jeanie says:

    Yes! After a while some blogs’ photos all look the same.

    I have a studio set up at home with an awesome backdrop. I much prefer outdoor photos though! This week I ventured out to the bay. I took some photos at a well known spot in Geelong (Australia). Unfortunatly due to poor light (& my still learning the ropes with the manual settings) I didn’t get sharp clear images that I wanted. They are still really interesting. Instead of using them in a blog post, I updated my facebook banner (temporarily) with this location photo.

    I guess I did this because that is what I find interesting when others do it.
    You can view my banner location shot here:
    http://www.facebook.com/InspiredWishJewellery

  17. Avatar of Susann Akers
    Susann Akers says:

    I agree I have seen loads of blogs with big images of models, magazine covers, and no text, no explanation about the subject . I get asked to follow, I always do but I probably would never visit that blog again

    S

  18. Avatar of Carmen
    Carmen says:

    Oh yeah! Is have been wondering who would give me such advice and you just did, very well:-)
    http://fashionseeeverything.blogspot.co.uk/

  19. I tend to take all my photos in the same place atm, a messy overgrown side garden. I’d love to hear some opinions on whether the backdrop is interesting or just overly busy…
    But I definitely think I need to up my game as far as locations , outfits and writing content. I’ve been shy in my photo taking, and I think I just need to get over it and make people take my photos and not try and do it all on my own! haha. I think another way to spice up your photos if you really only have one plain space to take them is to edit them after, not in a way that makes the picture look gimmicky, but maybe just with simple shapes and colours that can give it a more editorial feel.
    I’m planning on doing some editorial style shots for some outfits I wear in the coming months too :)

  20. Avatar of Sarah's Real Life

    Loved reading this! And I agree with all points. They are all things I try to do on a regular basis. Anytime I’m showing an outfit that’s not just the usual 9 to 5 work look, I explain what I was doing while I wore it (usually with an extra picture or 2 to give visual context).
    I also like including stylish friends from time to time. A tip within a tip: when you include a friend in your blog, you can post a link on Facebook and tag your friend. Chances are, some of their friends who wouldn’t otherwise find your blog will click on it. Not that I would USE my friends for the extra traffic, but I’m not going to ignore the opportunity :)

    Sarah’s Real Life

  21. Avatar of Tarandip Kaur

    Completely agree that style blogs are getting a little to mundane. It’s always good to change things up a little and showcase more – it could be the inspiration of the outfit to the surroundings you wore the outfit to. It adds that much more personality to the whole post and outfit!

  22. Avatar of Nadia H
    Nadia H says:

    It always surprises me when I see bloggers with great outfits but it’s in the same place everytime, same pose. I still need a lot of improvement but at least I’m trying to get a different atmosphere to every photo shoot.
    I also love when bloggers add quirky text to it- it’s so much more inspiring!
    http://www.thisischichi.co.uk

  23. I agree. One of the reasons I started my blog was the feeling that hats are often shown on mannequins, out of context, and a hat is the type of accessory that needs a great outfit and an exciting background in order to truly shine.

  24. Avatar of savvynista
    savvynista says:

    I’m so glad you shared this! You are right and I’ve caught myself doing this too. I think the art to being different from other style/fashion/lifestyle blogs is to do what you think is cool to you, a blog you’d like to bookmark and read.
    xo, M
    http://savvynista.com

  25. Great advice! I have to say I started out taking pics on my porch because I didn’t have a tripod, but since then I only take pics around my home when I’m pressed for time. Unfortunately I don’t have an awesome DSLR camera, so I hoped interesting backgrounds could help make my photos more interesting as well.

    I’ve recently considered adding my BF to photos but the jury’s still out on that one, because I want to keep some things private. But I do give backstory to some of my outfits or pieces, mostly because that’s what I have to talk about. It’s awesome to hear that that’s not a bad thing!

    I figure my blog is about me, my life and my thoughts, so if I’m spending time trying to copy some other blogger I’m not being true to myself or my readers.

  26. I try to add some variety to my photos. There was a time when I had to stick to the white background because honestly, for some of us who have had to take our own self-portraits, we have to find a place not too far to place the tripod and some locations would never work because I’d hate for someone to come and snatch my camera, plus the fact that I’d look rather awkard doing self-portraits in the middle of the street or a restaurant. That being said, I do understand the importance of having captivating pictures with each new post.

  27. Avatar of Kholá
    Kholá says:

    Enjoyed this. I find myself getting bored to. I’ve been thinking that I need to narrow my focus on my blog but then I like that I have a mix of style posts, commentary, and images that aren’t necessarily mine but that I find interesting. Thats what makes my blog me!

  28. Avatar of Renee J.
    Renee J. says:

    Lovely. I’m very happy that somehow I’ve been doing this tips on my outfit posts and in my blog. Although I’m not a straight up fashion blogger, I do give something more for my readers. Or at least, I hope I do. This is a great read. Thanks for this! xx

    http://reneejacobe.blogspot.com

  29. It’s crazy that the more successful you become as a blogger the less time you have to really devout to the small details of your blog. I’m trying to get back to my original blog mission, but it’s hard. My blog started off about my stylish friends, but moving has made that a little challenging. People in my small town have a hard time believing my blog is OK and safe. :-) I think I’m wearing them down, however.

    Whitney
    http://www.MyStylishFriends.com

  30. Can’t wait to improve my next post !!! <3

  31. Avatar of Hannelore
    Hannelore says:

    I agree! I must say, I only take outfit photos in my garden, unless when I’m on a holiday maybe, but I post a lot of photos of the things I do and places I visit. I love sharing these!

    http://auxpaysdesmerveilles.wordpress.com

  32. Avatar of Sarah Marie Mitchell
    Sarah says:

    I think you’re right about including context. I like knowing that the stylish people I see photos of just dress that way in their daily lives and aren’t doing it just for some blog content. I’m going to take your tip about including my friends more. Thanks!

    – SR

  33. Avatar of themerchantproject

    I love the suggestions on people doing it well! I got discover some new blog. thanks!

  34. Vibeke says:

    I agree!! Just wish I would dear to take photos with my tripod in the crowded parks ;)

  35. Kris says:

    hi! thanks for this honest insight – I personally struggled through whether I should incorporate my deep musings, an integral part of who I am, into my blog recently and decided to go with my gut even though people close to me were suggesting to take the “safe” route. I feel like in a space where you just might.. just might be able to make a bigger impact than you’ll ever know why not cuz you’re already putting yourself out there anyway. As Tim Ferris said: “It doesn’t matter how many people don’t get it. What matters is how many people do. If you have a strong informed opinion, don’t keep it to yourself. Try to help people and make the world a better place. If you strive to do anything remotely interesting, just expect a small percentage of the population to always find a way to take it personally. F*ck ’em. There are no statues erected to critics.”

    Ok I might’ve gone too deep lol but thx for these posts! I surely get a lot out of them :]

    xo, K from loveyouduh.com

  36. Avatar of Angelica Lainis

    What I love about my style blog is that the pictures are not taken any where near a street! My friend who takes all my photos has such a creative mind. I was climbing up trees, onto planks hanging off a wall and most of the photos are taken at this old abandoned, but beautiful nursery we found. Also all another element of my blog is that all my photos are taken through an iPhone – just to make it more interesting! But the quality is so good.
    My blog
    http://afinefashionfrenzyblog.blogspot.com.au/

  37. Avatar of Kayla
    Kayla says:

    This is so true. I try to get out and take pictures in different spots but I am definitely going to be more conscientious of this! Great post!

    http://teachingwithafashion.blogspot.com/

  38. Avatar of Eliza
    Eliza says:

    This is really valuable information for new bloggers. I’m new and I just assumed that you are supposed to just blog fashion posts. Thanks so much!!

    desfantaisies.tumblr.com

  39. Sarah says:

    THANK YOU SO MUCH for posting this. This is exactly what I’ve been feeling about fashion blogs lately. It’s like everything has become one homogeneous genre of the same stuff which isn’t what fashion is about. As a new blogger myself I’ve been thinking really hard about what direction to go with my blog, and at first I was unsure if it was smart/possible to create a new sort of genre for a fashion blog but this post has given me hope.

  40. Carmen Li says:

    This gave me a great insight on how to make my posts stand out! Thanks for this :)

    Carmen
    Thefashionreformation.com

Trackbacks for this post

  1. Copycat-ism | Vintage Style Queen

What do you think?