I am on the cusp of my 41st birthday and like I always do leading up to birthdays, I've been doing some reflection, specifically on my past year as a 40-year old fashion blogger. I am certainly not the only 40-or-over fashion blogger, and I don't think I'm a special case, but if I can say so, I have felt quite differently about blogging since I turned 40 (probably as a result of feeling different about LIFE), and have noticed some similarities amongst others of us “bloggers of a certain age:”
Since I turned 40, I've definitely been saying “who cares?” more often. I wish I'd done it earlier, and given up on trying to please people or worry about what everyone else thinks, but I truly believe that wisdom comes with age & time, and I was only ready to embrace it recently. Sure, in my 30's I was learning to let go and find myself, but I only reached that truly amazing stage where I REALLY don't care a couple of years ago. I see this in the other “older” bloggers I follow; an “oh yes I did” attitude and refusal to apologize for or explain our style choices. There's a freedom in this that I find so attractive.
Our Community is Strong
It's weird, but over the last year or so I've really noticed that I gravitate towards blogs with a lot of engagement, which I've found mostly on the over-40 bloggers I follow. We float about from one blogger to another, but there's always a sense of camaraderie there, no matter whose blog you're commenting on. As I've turned 40, a sense of community and finding other women out there who I can identify with is more important than ever.
I've found with a lot of the over-40 fashion bloggers I follow, there is a combination of irreverence with regard to our sartorial choices, and an idea that it's about more than just the clothes. We're sincere in our discussions of how we see ourselves, and how others may see us, given our style/way of dressing. We also talk about life and ideas, but overall, we're honest and up front about everything. Including fashion.
It's not always true, but I have found that for me, with age, has come some mellow-ness, and a desire to be less competitive. Sure, fashion blogging is sometimes a lot like high-school (hell, LIFE is a lot like high-school sometimes!!), but I don't need to be all up in it anymore. I want to help and be supportive of other women, and I've found other women who desire the same (of all ages, but mostly among women in their 30's and 40's). My readers, who range from 30's to 50's are also incredibly supportive .
We have a different perspective on fashion/style – you won't see us posting about the latest trends without admitting that we've done them before, and not taking them too seriously. We're also fiercely independent. As I look through my favorite over-30 & 40 fashion blogs, I learn about designers I hadn't heard of before, or maybe hadn't considered trying before (Eileen Fisher anyone?). I see grey hair and outfit pictures that are not posed, exude confidence & grace, and sometimes even a “devil may care” attitude as I mentioned above. So refreshing!
By segmenting this into over-40 fashion bloggers I certainly don't mean to say that these things are not true of bloggers of any age, just that perhaps they're more noticeable to me, now. No matter what age you are now, twenties, thirties, forties, fifties, there is always more to learn, and in my articles here, I try to offer a perspective on blogging that I didn't have when I started, or even five years ago. It would have been nice to have had an older fashion blogger/mentor tell me what's on the horizon, from a shared perspective! Sure, you're surrounded by people telling you how exciting life gets into your 30's, 40's & 50's, but it doesn't really sink in until you're IN IT.
So, take it from me, look forward to 40. I promise, it'll be good.
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