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Fashion Blogging: the expressive side of fashion

By Reeanna Lynn Hernandez

In the year 2013, if you were a real fashionista, you wouldn’t be bragging about it–you’d be blogging.

photo by Reeanna Lynn Hernadez

photo by Reeanna Lynn Hernadez

A vogue-chic trend on the rise in this media driven era is the art of fashion blogging. In the year 2013, blogs of all topics have become expressive online forums. Fashion blogs may cover a variety of different topics, focusing on clothing items, fashionable boutiques, celebrity styles, vintage wear, beauty trends, lifestyles of a fashionista, or if not just one of these, all of the above. Fashion blogs are creative and personal online sites that cover all things fashion and style.

The fashion industry is one that shapes the lives of people everywhere. How people choose to present themselves, their own personal style and what they wear is a significant element of how a society is defined. What many fashion bloggers attempt to do is relay that there is so much more to fashion than simply articles of clothing. Fashion is who people are, how they present themselves. Fashion is what people are feeling. The industry is made up of not only retailers, but designers, buyers, boutiques, magazines writers and editors. Fashion is a very amultifaceted industry and online bloggers have most definitely contributed to this.

Fashion Blogging: The beginning of the trend

cFashion blogging entered mainstream media in 2002. One of the first significant blogs to be established in 2003 was titled “The Budget of a Fashionista”, by Katherine Finney. The blog was said to be developed from “a love of fashion, but a lack of cash” and quickly grew into popularity in 2003 when Finney was invited to attend New York Fashion Week for top name designers.

It was not long after this that other fashion bloggers were invited to second row at shows for high class designers. Since 2002, fashion blogs have attracted worldwide attention. Slowly but surely, brand names started to recognize the significant role these blogs could play in the marketing of their product. The realization led bloggers to taking their love of fashion and transform it to an entirely new career advancing level.

One of first people to realize the career potential in fashion blogging was Michelle Madhok when she created the site SheFinds.com, in 2004. According to the blog,“SHEfinds editors read the fashion pubs, scour the streets and scout the stores to find out what’s worth your while.” According to Madhoks, after you subscribe to the blog you get all the access to fashion finds.

Another blog that added to this media trend was Nastygal.com which was founded by Sophia Amoruso. According to the blog, “Nasty Gal is a global online destination for fashion-forward, free-thinking girls,” The blog shares the history of the store, “In 2006, founder Sophia Amoruso started an eBay store selling a highly curated selection of vintage pieces. In just five short years, the shop has grown to become an international style source offering both new and vintage clothing, shoes, and accessories.”

Since the early days of fashion blogging,
businesses and ideas like this have only continued to escalate

Fashion Blogging: The not-so glamorous side of fashion blogging

photo by Reeanna Lynn Hernandez

photo by Reeanna Lynn Hernandez

Not all fashion blogging businesses begin as a success.In an interview Madhoks did with Eve Tahmincioglu, writer for the New York Times, she explains starting a business through fashion blogging was no easy task, and no inexpensive one at that. The article illuminates the fact that it took nearly six months for the business to begin generating income. In 2005, the company took in $300,000 in revenue and today Madhok pays herself only $10,000 once a quarter, contingent on how the company is doing.Madhok told the New York Times, “If I was still a corporate gal I’d be making more than $150,000 a year in stock and bonus. But I really don’t feel deprived. This business is my passion.”

 

Fashion Blogging: For the love of fashion

photo by Reeanna Lynn HernandezFor people who dedicate their lives to the art of fashion blogging, it is not always for the money or the “success” of their business, but rather, it is the passion for the art that keeps them going. In 2013, fashion blogging rose to an all-time high. Some new bloggers decided to write about fashion to enhance their career, while others decided to write simply for the love of fashion.

Abby Sterling, a fairly new fashion blogger and creator of the wordpress fashion blog, “the fabulous life of a natural disaster” took up fashion blogging mainly to express her love for fashion.

“I have always been a creative and artsy person, with a passion for fashion. I was an active follower of several blogs and it looked like so much fun to do. Starting a fashion/style blog seemed like the perfect creative outlet for me.”

Sterling has decided she defines success in fashion blogging not in the money she makes, but in the love she has for the art.

Photo courtesy of “the fabulous life of a natural disaster” wordpress blog

Photo courtesy of “the fabulous life of a natural disaster” wordpress blog

“For right now I think my successes are definitely more on the personal side. I literally just started a blog and tested the waters not knowing what was out there. I guess in the beginning though, my goal was for myself – to do something that was creatively fulfilling and enjoyable,” Sterling said. “That will always remain my top goal and my ultimate measure of success.  When it stops being fun and something I like to do, then that will be that. But I don’t see that happening anytime soon. Other than that, I think that the fact that people in my network seem to really enjoy my blog and style is a definite form of success. It’s really scary to put yourself out there, so to hear words of praise and encouragement is huge.”

Sterling says she believes blogs have the ability to impact those who follow them and has hopes that her blog can make an impact as well.

“I hope that my blog has had a little impact, if only that it shows that you can have style, be on trend etc. on a super small budget like mine,” Sterling said. “Also, that it’s ok to make mistakes and not be and look perfect all the time.  On the personal side, I think it’s made me work harder and challenge myself. I also feel happier than I have been and I think that’s because my blog does let me express myself in a way that I haven’t been able to in the past.”

Sterling goes on to say that while she loves blogging, it is most definitely not always easy.

“Keeping up with my blog can be difficult sometimes since I have a full time job,” she added. “But it is a challenge that I do accept and embrace.”

Fashion Blogging: The impact of the trend

photo by Reeanna Lynn Hernandez

photo by Reeanna Lynn Hernandez

Nikki Knippenberg, creator of the blog, “Reflections of the Bitter and Disillusioned” believes the world of fashion blogging has created an accessible outlet to the realm of the fashion world.

“Fashion blogging has definitely made high fashion more accessible and easier to find. Fashion blogging, like anything you
read or see, has the ability to impact your sense of style and give you new ideas, even if you don’t go out and buy that particular outfit, it gives you ideas.

Kara Kuntz, an active follower of fashion blogs, believes the trend of fashion blogging is one that has impacted not only fashion but the confidence of people who follow them.

“Fashion is trend driven and fashion blogs provide new ways to follow new styles of clothes,” Kuntz says. “It helps women feel confident and classy and put fashion in a whole new perspective.”b

Whether bloggers use the trend to better their career, enhance their personal sense of style, or impact the style of other, fashion blogging has proven to be a trend of tremendous impact in our society. The trend is at an all-time high in the year of 2013, and is expected to only continue in the coming years. The impact it has made in the fashion industry, not only to designers, but to fashion followers and bloggers as well is unlike any other. This only goes to show, fashion trends may come and go, but the trend of                                                                           fashion  blogging will document them forever.

photo by Reeanna Lynn Hernandez

reeannahernandez

About reeannahernandez

Reeanna Lynn is a magazine journalism major with aspirations to one day write for a fashion magazine. She is currently editorial assistant at Metropolitan Denver Magazine, independent fashion blogger and reporter at the Metropolitan. Reeanna expects to graduate in Spring 2014.

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