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25-06-2010
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seahorseinstripe's Avatar
 
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Thoughts on fashion bloggers
what's your opinion?
honestly i was ecstatic at first at the thought of fashion blogs, till now i'm still is. but lately it's been kinda too much i guess.
and i love that twitter is invented but it seems like everyone now fighting to tweet the fastest at fashion show i wonder if they really have a chance to really see the pieces at all

i'm not saying that i don't like the trend of blogging, i read some of them daily and i even have my own blogs but really, some so called "fashion blogger" are overrated and i really don't see what some people see in them.
and i found that now magazines and designers are kinda try to lick them a** by giving some too much credits

here's one interesting article on bloggers by BOF

Quote:
Fashion 2.0 | What The Independent Article Didn’t Tell Us



Tavi Gevinson's Bow at Dior Couture | Source: Twitpic by SteffiSchuetze




LONDON, United Kingdom — A veritable firestorm erupted across fashion blogs and twitter streams this week in response to an article that appeared in London’s Independent newspaper over the weekend, highlighting Tavi Gevinson’s front row presence at the Haute Couture shows in Paris.
In a piece entitled “Fluff flies as fashion writers pick a cat fight with bloggers,” The Independent reported that “senior fashion insiders believe blogs have turned into little more than mouthpieces for fashion brands, which are increasingly using bloggers to regurgitate their press releases.”
As those controversial words rippled through the blogosphere and twittersphere, the protest and outrage came from all quarters of the fashion blogging fraternity and sorority. And, while we at the BoF were hesitant to take the bait and join the fray — the whole ‘editors versus bloggers’ story is becoming tired — it would be even worse for us to remain silent. Indeed, the Independent article raises very important issues which merit further discussion and debate, and perhaps, a more balanced perspective on this so-called “backlash” against bloggers.
In fact, this is exactly what I said when I was contacted for quotes on the Independent piece — quotes which were ultimately not used. As it turns out, several other bloggers were also asked to comment, including Susie Bubble and Helene of The Luxe Chronicles, but none of their quotes were used either. In fact, not one blogger was directly quoted to provide comment on the other side of the story. The result is an article that comes across as very black and white, on an issue that actually has many shades of grey. We are only at the very beginning of the digital revolution that is sweeping across the fashion industry. And so, to only show one side of the story does readers, and the industry as a whole, a disservice.
In the spirit of adding to the dialogue and providing a more balanced perspective, here’s some food for thought.
First, most bloggers worth their salt operate with integrity and professional values. This is not to say that bloggers are beyond reproach. There are always some bad apples in the bunch, in this case, those bloggers who accept products in exchange for positive coverage or special treatment. However, smart bloggers recognise that if they lose their independence, they will quickly lose the trust of their audiences. Simply being a mouthpiece is a short-term strategy.
So Who Isn't Bought? | Source: Bryanboy

Second, for editors from the mainstream media to hold bloggers to a different standard than that to which they hold themselves, is hypocritical. As one fashion insider told me, more than ever, major fashion editors are putting advertisers front and centre in their fashion editorial, giving smaller independent brands a miss.
“By and large, the way that bloggers respond to brands still results in content that isn’t unlike a traditional advertorial or ‘bought copy’ seen in magazines,” said Susie Bubble, author of one of the world’s most widely read fashion blogs, to the Independent, in quotes that she kindly shared with me but weren’t used in the piece.
“It is up to the blogger how they handle it and how they portray themselves. They are accountable to their readers and if they choose to do something that strikes [readers] as being biased or ‘bought by brands,’ then they have to suffer the consequences,” she concluded.
This is more important than ever before. Now that brands have cottoned on to the influence that bloggers have, they are doing everything to seduce them and win their approval.
In theory, there is nothing wrong with bloggers building relationships with brands and gaining special access. But, if these relationships become so cozy that bloggers stop saying what they really think, they risk losing the audiences that have grown to love them. The trick for bloggers, therefore, is to maintain healthy relationships with the brands, while also staying true to their audiences — it’s a fine balance.
Finally, we must all be aware that the tensions we’re seeing simply reflect the growing pains of a new medium that’s only just finding its way. As Vikram Alexei Kansara, Managing Editor of BoF said, “Like them or not, bloggers are here to stay and should be recognised as the powerful and significant ‘Fifth Estate’ that they are. Today we are at a moment that’s not unlike the invention of the Gutenberg press. It took hundreds of years for print media to evolve beyond biased pamphleteering, so why should they expect blogging to mature over night? If anything, I would argue that blogging is maturing much faster than print ever did!”
For her part, Susie Mesure, the author of the controversial article, said “the story ended up being much shorter than initially envisaged so I couldn’t use all the comments. Writing in a paper is not like writing online as I am constrained by the word limit set by my editor. I would have liked to use all the comments I received as they were very interesting. Hopefully I may yet get the chance.”
Indeed, all of the bloggers I spoke to said that their conversations with Ms. Mesure were pleasant and interesting. Even though she may have had an preconceived agenda in mind, she was asking all the right questions. It’s just too bad she wasn’t able to share the answers.
In the end, as Helene Le Blanc of Luxe Chronicles said, “it would be a far more productive debate if, rather than sniping at bloggers such as Tavi, journalists and editors actually engaged bloggers in a genuine dialogue about the state of the industry and the ways in which social media can make fashion a more participative industry.”
Hopefully now the mainstream media will turn its focus to discussing and analysing what bloggers are saying, instead of perpetuating the unconstructive ‘us versus them’ tension. Indeed, contrary to what the article may have indicated, Ms. Mesure is “a big fan of blogs – fashion blogs and otherwise,” she says. “I do however think there is a danger with readers assuming bloggers are independent when there is so much ‘gifting’ and ’seeding’ going on, which was really the main point I wanted to make.”
Imran Amed is Founder and Editor of The Business of Fashion
source : http://www.businessoffashion.com/201...t-tell-us.html

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Last edited by seahorseinstripe; 25-06-2010 at 01:42 PM.
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25-06-2010
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thanks for the thread SOS...good one...

well-
there's a perfect example of why i dont read most blogs...

that was a really boring and poorly written piece...imho...
even if the point was valid...it was hard to get it because it was so uninteresting to read...

and that is the case with most blogs...
they are mostly written by random people who just want to tell you what they think...
regardless of whether or not they have any background or qualifications in the field they choose to blog about...
and i usually dont find any of it really interesting at all...
maybe if i were 15 years old i would feel differently ...
or maybe i'd have my own streetstyle blog if i were 15 yr old...
i don't know...
but it's gonna have to be a whole lot better than it is now if you want anyone to pay attention for more than a minute...

there are those rare exceptions which are really interesting and inspiring...
usually created by artists and other creative types...
and those do tend to stand out from the crowd...
but it becomes increasingly difficult to find those - just because the internet is so friggin' crowded these days!!...
...

also--- if you have any real talent...
i would imagine that you would be getting paid for your work...
rather than just putting it out there for free...
no?...


i'm always very selective about what i put on my blog...
because i am not just going to give away the candy store, if you know what i mean...
in other words...
i'll give you a peek at what goes on in my brain and what inspires me...
but you aren't going to get the full picture unless we're working together...
because then i'll fill in the blanks...

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Last edited by softgrey; 25-06-2010 at 02:04 PM.
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25-06-2010
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softgrey i agree with some of your thoughts and yeah, maybe if i'm 15 or 20 i would create my own style blog lol. it seems like style blog is one of the way to be "in"

mostly i only look for pictures when i browse for blogs, i don't even bother to read because seems like the words can come just right out of my mouth so why do i bother reading em
i do find blogging is one of a nice way to keep your secret identity, i don;t put my face in my blog, i don't like the idea of people knowing who i am and by that certain people can't use me for their advantage.
i like to say what i want to say which i don't think can happen if my work appear in magazines or anything that pay me, my blog is like an alter ego where working in fashion or styling industry can be tiring already, where politics will involve what i have to say if u know what i mean :p

and things can get really complicated when your blog already considered as "influential" u know, people contacted you carrying their own interests, asking for your help, sending you free gifts or invitations in turn for good words. my blog is not even that hip but i found people emailing me asking me to put their bags in my blog, but luckily i don't get paid and i don't have any people sponsoring my blogs and stuffs so i don't have the obligation to put everything.
i like the idea of being anonymous so i don't have to feel bad if i don't "help" certain company.

i'm not trying to connect anything but i think this is one of the reason why magazine editors now are trying more to show their personal style, to be a "walking runway"
maybe this is a response from the overpowering of fashion bloggers. the magazine and editors maybe realize that they need to be more than just a name behind the curtain. they need to be an individual, they need to show people their capability in their work by dressing up.
and honestly i love this phenomenon, i love to see editors street style wayyyyy more than i see most bloggers' street style

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25-06-2010
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Quote:
i'm not trying to connect anything but i think this is one of the reason why magazine editors now are trying more to show their personal style, to be a "walking runway"
maybe this is a response from the overpowering of fashion bloggers. the magazine and editors maybe realize that they need to be more than just a name behind the curtain. they need to be an individual, they need to show people their capability in their work by dressing up.
and honestly i love this phenomenon, i love to see editors street style wayyyyy more than i see most bloggers' street style
me too...
but in general...
i would just like to see the streetstyle of many more stylish people...
not just teenagers and early 20's...
i mean...even when i was IN high school...
i was looking for style inspiration from people who were older, more experienced and had more money than i could ever hope to have from my part time job ...
and then i would be creative and try to put together some version of that for myself...
with my own style added in...

i can't imagine that if i was a teenager that i would really care about other teenagers all that much...i was always looking farther ahead..
but maybe that's just me???...
...


***and i totally agree...
I ONLY LOOK AT THE PICTURES!!!...
.........

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25-06-2010
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Quote:
i was looking for style inspiration from people who were older, more experienced and had more money than i could ever hope to have from my part time job ...
now may i introduce you to this blog lol
http://advancedstyle.blogspot.com/

have u seen it? now this is inspiring, some of them are really cool!!!

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25-06-2010
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And then you get someone like me, on the opposite end of the scale - I would rather see editors perform the job of being an editor, rather than straining themselves to be an ever-changing clotheshorse if it doesn't come naturally to them to be that sort of person. Certainly, if you're the figurehead of a fashion magazine, you will need to cultivate some sort of visual trademark or have some sort of 'style uniform', but I don't expect them to perform the same job as the models in the magazine, and I have no interest whatsoever in the personal style of anyone who works on a publication - other than how their tastes translate onto the printed page, in the form of a creative story.

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25-06-2010
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here is another blogger article from the daily beast (from april 2010):

Quote:
Are Fashion Bloggers Selling Out?
by Isabel Wilkinson

Online fashion critics have already changed the industry, but now they're being wooed with designer freebies and corporate partnerships.

On Monday night, Anna Wintour spoke on a panel at the Pratt Institute, where a student asked her about fashion bloggers. "We love as much coverage of fashion as possible," the Vogue editrix told the crowd. "But maybe some bloggers and some of the newcomers to this world have a little bit less experience of, but as I said, the more the merrier. We embrace it."
The comments left a bit of a shiver in the room—and the next day, Gawker called her compliments for fashion bloggers "bitchy ."

Wintour's words echoed the sentiments of Joe Zee, the creative director of Elle, who recently spoke on a panel at New York's Fashion Institute of Technology. When asked about how digital media was influencing the fashion industry, Zee, speaking about fashion bloggers, snipped : "…if you don't know what you're talking about, then do you have the credibility to talk about it?"

In a strange, self-fulfilling prophecy, Zee's quote quickly spread around the blogosphere like news of a Rodarte sample sale—yet another mainstream dinosaur was dismissing the digital meteor shower.

But if it used to be easy to wave aside fashion bloggers, and criticize them for being nothing more than kids writing about fashion from their bedrooms, these days they are impossible to ignore. Even Zee, when reached by phone last Monday, explained: "What I was trying to say is that you can't compare Cathy Horyn and Tavi ," he says of The New York Times' fashion critic and the popular blogger Tavi Gevinson, who turned 14 on Wednesday. "One is a fashion critic who has been doing this for a number of years and can reference things that she's seen. The other is doing it to be fun and quirky. Can Tavi reference a collection that happened five years ago? She was 8. But there is room for both in fashion journalism."

In just a few years of existence, fashion bloggers have already become influential tastemakers. They are often granted front-row seats at fashion shows, they've been profiled by The New York Times, photographed for Vogue—and one even had a bag named after him by Marc Jacobs. And this year, for the first time, two of the most famous bloggers, Tavi and Bryan Boy, voted for the prestigious CFDA awards, which will be presented on June 7.

But with the increasing success, of course, comes new problems. Some bloggers are now realizing what many fashion magazines have struggled with for years: How do you remain an independent voice without being co-opted by the very industry you cover? Like mainstream fashion editors, bloggers are now swimming in freebies, and industry veterans wonder whether they can maintain enough distance from the brands they critique. They are also expressing reservations about selling out, as some bloggers are making money off their readers and inking corporate deals.

One such blogger is Grechen Cohen, 37, who founded Grechen's Closet, in 2004. In 2006, she was able to quit her job working on business development for projects between American and Israeli companies because she began making enough money with the blog, which focuses on shopping. Since then, she's blogged about favorite products and where to find the best discounts. She's supported herself through both advertising and affiliate programs, whereby she collects a finder's fee on items that she recommends to readers that they go on to buy on e-commerce sites. Now, she says, she makes over $50,000 a year on her blog.

Like Cohen, other bloggers aren't just relying on advertisers—they're also making money from "affiliate" deals with major shopping sites. In November 2009, Net-a-Porter founder Natalie Massenet noted that bloggers and affiliate sites represented 5 percent of the company's sales.

A year before that, Cohen says that 65 percent of her revenue came from advertisers and 35 percent through commissions on affiliate sales. This year, she says, that ratio has flipped—and she now collects 35 percent of her revenue from advertisers, and 65 percent through affiliate sales—which she thinks represents how her readers have reacted to the recession, and, because they "identify with me," are driven to splurge on quality items because of her recommendations. Pierre Rougier, owner of PR Consulting, says that bloggers have influence over their readers especially when it comes to "impulse" buys—accessories that readers can quickly purchase online. "When a blogger starts loving a bag or a shoe," he says, "You know it has impact."

They may be gaining in popularity, but bloggers' real influence is not so easy to measure. A blog called Signature 9 has created the Style 99—a Forbes 500-like quarterly ranking of the 99 most influential style blogs, the most recent of which was published last week. The list is calculated by scoring bloggers on "general content quality, popularity, and buzz."

While some bloggers have monetized through affiliate programs or traditional advertising, others have used their blogs as launching pads for lucrative deals. Tavi has scored writing gigs at Pop Magazine and Harper's Bazaar, she's designed T-shirts, and has been paid by Target to do a video promoting Rodarte's line for the store. Sea of Shoes blogger Jane Aldridge has designed two shoe collections for Urban Outfitters. Susanna Lau of Style Bubble got a job for Dazed Magazine because of her blog, and The Coveted's Jennine Jacob says she is in the process of launching a denim site funded by a fashion company.

All of these projects advance while bloggers continue doing what they do best: writing about what they like. While the Federal Trade Commission dictates a policy of full-disclosure to bloggers where there are conflicts of interest, they have long been criticized by print journalists for receiving gifts and engaging in other free or incentivized projects. But many bloggers assert that there exists an unfair double standard, and that editors at glossy magazines enjoy similar perks.

The fashion bloggers interviewed for this article unanimously expressed their desire to be judged only for what they set out to do—and to not be held to the same standards as journalists. "I do not see myself as a journalist," Bryan Boy insists. "At the end of the day, it's just a diary."

Susanna Lau of Style Bubble agrees: "The media thinks that bloggers are trying to be authority figures—when it's just a girl in her bedroom, trying to put herself out there with the things she likes."

But even with full disclosure, editors, writers and experienced bloggers expressed concern over whether new style bloggers could separate their newfound access from objectivity. "The problem is that so far the younger bloggers have not been able to resist all of this attention—to be a part of this article and sit in the front row," says The New York Times' fashion critic Cathy Horyn. "And I don't know how effective you can be sometimes with that if you're just coming in as a newcomer and you're wowed by the glamour and the fun of it."

And while bloggers have accelerated the metabolism of the fashion industry, many of the top bloggers know they may soon be over. "It's going to thin out in a couple of years," Grechen Cohen says. "So many things change from your early 20s to your 30s." For many, that means going mainstream—to magazines. One designer suggested that this generation of bloggers is destined to be "the future editors of America" because they're "the only ones who are going to know how a magazine can be a real-time dialogue."

Brian Phillips of Black Frame agrees: “There are flashes in the pan, and they matter for a minute,” he says. “But I find it more interesting who can parlay their platform into a bigger platform. The only ones that can do that are the ones who can write, can capture the zeitgeist—and can describe it in a unique way that other people can internalize.”

Yet Robin Givhan, The Washington Post's fashion critic, is skeptical of whether bloggers can make the leap. "I don't know if they will evolve into the standard bearers in the industry," she says. "I don't know if they'll adopt the standards the mainstream media has—or if they'll just change those standards."

Bryan Boy admits he's not sure he'll have longevity. "I don't think I'm going to be in the front row for the rest of my life," he says. "It could go away at any second. So why should I stop myself from saying what I want, when everything could be taken away from me?"

And though they've won fame, successful bloggers are setting the bar high for newer and younger fashion fans who want to follow in their well-heeled footsteps. It's no longer acceptable to re-post pictures from Style.com and write about it—readers are looking to bloggers for something instantly fresh and different. "There was that initial romance," says Cathy Horyn of the early hype. "And now it's the question of how sustainable it is for the bloggers. We expect to see something more now from them. And I'm sure we will—or we'll see it from a new blog."

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Last edited by kimair; 25-06-2010 at 07:14 PM.
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25-06-2010
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personally, i write a fashion blog because most magazines for me are eye candy (editorial...and not really talking about the business of fashion in terms of launches, new initiatives, etc.)...

i would love if my blog led to a paid writing job, or at least a freelance writing career to the point where i could just do that, but i am happy with doing it on the side because as seahorse said, i can write about what i want to write about...

but robin givhan made an interesting point in the article above:
Quote:
"I don't know if they'll adopt the standards the mainstream media has—or if they'll just change those standards."
what are the "standards of mainstream media?"
that you have to cover advertisers? that you can't badmouth any collection?
this is why in a way i'd rather stay independent, because i can talk about how bored i am with balmain, or how horrible i think gucci is...

i think writing a fashion blog and giving commentary on fashion is different than the style bloggers who just post pictures of themselves...
imo i think alot of them are the same and there are very few out there who i feel like have a great sense of individual style...
i'm sick of seeing balmaniacs and wang-maniacs and the like...

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26-06-2010
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Quote:

originally posted by kimair

...i'd rather stay independent, because i can talk about how bored i am with balmain, or how horrible i think gucci is...

i think writing a fashion blog and giving commentary on fashion is different than the style bloggers who just post pictures of themselves...
imo i think alot of them are the same and there are very few out there who i feel like have a great sense of individual style...
i'm sick of seeing balmaniacs and wang-maniacs and the like...
Couldnīt say it better! I agree with you 100%.
I am so bored with what I wore kind of blogs, or blogs that are allways saying look what I bought, new Miu Miu bag or new Balmain jacket.
I like blogs that have little stories from everyday life, toughts and ofcourse beautiful pictures. It is so much more interesting that seeing what people wear everyday, because 99% they are try-hards and look the same as every blogger.
I follow few what I wore blog and they are totally different from those popular blogs, they are much more interesting and I am glad they do not wear Wang or Balmain or hang out in fancy parties hahah.

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26-06-2010
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As a blogger I agree with everything said above, I don't follow the trends religiously and I don't take a photo of myself everyday in front of a pretty garden or on a city street.
To me that isn't interesting and there is only so many times you can look at something before it all blurs together and becomes nothing.
I try to give my posts an editorial aspect, all centered around one piece. But I mix it up and also post photos from shoots I have done or new designers I love.

I think a lot of bloggers are quite fame hungry and are doing what is "trendy" just to get followers and forcing this standard uniform on themselves. Very sad in some ways.

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26-06-2010
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My enthusiasm for fashion blogs (in general) is fading slowly but surely. I prefer the people with a unique view and knowledge, and that's just not something you get from fashion blogs (of course there are always exceptions).

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27-06-2010
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People should give fashion bloggers a break. Granted there are loads out there who are practically clones of each other that are really boring to read - and maybe I'm one of them in some people's opinions -but there are loads out there who offer a unique and quirky view on life and fashion.

Plus, in my opinion, a blog full of only pictures is a fairly repetetive thing to look at and will only get boring quickly if there is no commentary to go with the pictures to explain why they are significant or special.

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28-06-2010
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I don't think it's as black and white as lumping "bloggers" in one pile and "magazine people" in another.

You have the power-bloggers - people like bryanboy, susie bubble, tavi - who are the ones that people are usually referring to when they mention bloggers.

Now, whether you like their blogs or not (and while I do read some blogs, I can't count any of the above in my personal favourites) the reason that they're in the position they're in is because a lot of people do. They got where they are by virtue of being popular - no one is going to invite one of the many, many fashion bloggers who sits at home posting things that are read by a handful of people.

But look at what the photo-bloggers like Scott Schuman, Garance Dorť and Tommy Ton have achieved. JakandJil is one of the only blogs that I check regularly, because his photographs are great and distinctive. The fact that he's been able to turn it into a paying gig, work for magazines and style.com and now has greater access to the people he photographs, well good for him and that benefits us who like his photographs too.

It's a hugely saturated area and you're going to get good along with the bad, but this is the same in fashion magazines if we're going to compare the two!

One of the great things about bloggers was their independent-viewpoint - that they weren't tied to brands by way of advertising money or because they can't afford to anger designers by printing the wrong things in the way that a lot of magazines are. It's a shame that some blogs might be going the same way as the magazines, but for every one that does there will be far more who don't and it's up to readers to decide which they want to read.

Ultimately, blogging, in terms of the phenomenon that it's become in fashion, is still relatively new and finding it's place. I think that there will always be plenty of them around, but in terms of the ones that are influential it will level out at some point to those who have either a genuine talent or interesting viewpoint.

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28-06-2010
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For me personally, I used to read a lot of fashion blogs, and that changed when I noticed patterns emerging [self promotion or general advertising].

There appear to be a group of "girls" and women, who cannot offer up more than a lovely series of photographs about what they are wearing - they do not offer insights into designers/collections/concepts etc. Simply...they have the money to buy expensive pieces and then show how they wear those pieces. {Once in a while it is nice to browse for inspiration.}

Then you have the creative types, who have/had experience in the working world of fashion/journalism/photography etc. They offer visualising pleasingly and well written entries - introduce new designers, and of course, every so often highlight gifts they have been given to promote. But they do it in quite a subtle way, IMO.

You also have blogs which do not fit the aforementioned styles - these ladies use their blogs to support themselves - they jump at any and every company who offers them a product to advertise.
For example, a recent string of entries promoting "Orbit" on a well-known blog just put me off visiting that blog again.
Likewise, blogs which simply showcase ones work and offer pieces for sale.

These blogs are all lumped in the same category, but perhaps it should not be so. After all, like articles have mentioned, what can one really expect to learn from someone so young who has no actual experience of the fashion business, just what they themselves have read in magazines/online.
Opinions on collections surely cannot be taken seriously when you have top editors/commentators who have been at this for so many more years.

I am not saying that I dislike blogs, I do follow a small number of blogs, but for me these days I find more inspiration from street-style photography, rather that the content.

A further point that quite often drives me nuts, you can tell when a designer has sent their look-book out, since almost simultaneously the same series of photographs and commentary appear on blogs, and the fight is who can get that out first, without being seen to "copy" another blogger.

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02-07-2010
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i think it's getting worse...
to be honest...
...

maybe the ones that aren't very good (most of them) will eventually fade away and die out...?
*survival of the fittest, cream rises to the top...choose your fave cliche...

but yeah...
i agree with everything that luluposh posted...

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