Fearless Fashion: Be Kind to Yourself and Be Your Own #1 Fan2:01 PM
We all take pictures that we deem unflattering. As a blogger, sometimes you become extra critical because you don't want "unflattering" pictures of you out there. Especially if you're a blogger who doesn't have the luxury of affording a professional photographer to take your pics on a regular basis. ::raises hand::
When it comes to fashion blogging, images are everything. They are what gets you noticed. It's what inspires other women to try new styles or feel empowered. And some of these bloggers look like they can be on the pages of Vogue.
Sure, there are bloggers out there who are proud of their rolls, bellies (which they dub "VBO" = Visual Belly Outline) and flaws.. they show them proudly in their pictures, wearing body con dresses and swimwear. And I applaud these women. I give them virtual high fives and yell out "You Go Girl!" at my computer screen when I see them. Women like Virgie Tovar (who included my short story in her book Hot & Heavy: Fierce Fat Girls on Life, Love & Fashion) are truly amazing and empowering.
Some say it's brave to show yourself in that way. Not covering up your flaws, wearing uncomfortable shapewear or posing in ways to hide parts of yourself. I personally don't think it's about bravery because every person deserves to showcase who they are. I think it's more about confidence and your level of care when it comes to other people.
Recently, I have been blogging about plus size fashion retailer Catherines since I am their featured blogger for April. Tomorrow, I plan to talk to denim again as a Part-2 to last week's nautical day denim look (click here to check that out). But I decided to do an extra post this week because I wanted to share not only the positive but also the negative, when it comes to my experience with blogging about fashion.
I originally planned to do a black and white look and show how jeans can be worn to the office or an event. But when I saw the pictures taken, I said to myself, OH HELL NO. My belly is out there and I just felt like they were not my best images.
But after filing them away on my laptop at the start of this month, they stayed on my mind. I loved my outfit, thought my makeup looked flawless and I loved the backdrop in the images. And it bothered me that I was being so critical about them and myself. Part of body acceptance and loving yourself is not hiding. And that was what I was doing by filing away these images and not showing them. I was hiding.
My friend, who took the pics, kept saying how wonderful I looked and she is someone who is very honest.
So I had to ask myself, why am I being so critical of myself in these images? Why should I care how I am perceived? If I feel good, love what I am wearing and am happy, that's what matters. Thus, I decided I was going to share them and blog about them. AND not give two french fries what anyone else thinks.
I paired this outfit with some black studded flats, teardrop white earrings and a neon yellow bangle for a subtle pop of color. This is a look that can work for the office or for drinks after. It can also work as a day look on the weekend. I am all about versatility since I tend to remix my outfits and wear pieces more than once in different ways. If this top had stretch, I think I would give this outfit an A+.
Shop my look here:
- Print Tunic from Catherines - Not available online (I bought it in-store) - click here to shop all tunics at Catherines
- Pull-in Jeans from Catherines - Available in sizes 16-34 in average and petite - click here
- Studded flat from Lane Bryant - click here
Someone told me to be kind to myself, when I was dealing with the loss of my dad and brother. I think that rings true in fashion also. We have all these fashion rules we are supposed to abide by but I think the best rule should be that... Be kind to yourself and stop the criticism.
I'm not 100% over my critical nature but I am working on it. Sharing these images is a big step for me. We can be our own worst critic and worry too much about what others think. But at the end of the day, people are always going to have something to say and we have no control over that. So why not be happy, wear what you love and treat the world like it's your runway? That's going to be my daily mission from here on out.