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Sunday, October 13, 2013

Respecting Others' Styles

John Marine | 9:45 PM | |
The challenge of offering various views in fashion is a great one for me. Part of my commentary on "StyleSpace by JBM" lies in things I like and dislike. Everything I discuss I try to discuss professionally and honestly. While it may seem like some of my posts are boring or neutral, I do so because not everyone is going to feel the same way about a certain look, a certain trend, a certain style, or anything like that.

The one thing I've learned is to respect the style choices made by certain people and bloggers. If you know my blogging in my main blog "John's Blog Space," I discuss things even I am not comfortable or in agreement with. But just because my views may differ doesn't mean I only exclusively discuss things based on what I like. This blog post is a commentary piece regarding respecting the fashion choices of others.

About the Label: "Blogging"

Issues related to fashion blogging is mentioned under this label. These are topics regarding (in this case) fashion blogging. These topics also include posting outfits on websites such as LOOKBOOK and Chictopia. Under this label, I will make efforts to discuss fashion as far as blogging and other online media is concerned. If fashion topic relevant to blogging are of interest to you, then please look for my topics under the "Blogging" label.

--- Respecting Others' Styles ---

What do I mean when I mention respecting one's style? This means many things, but the most important thing is that you respect one's style choices even if you don't agree with or like how one styles an outfit. For example, respect a teenage girl's style choices if she chooses to wear a pretty sundress paired with the toughest pair of combat boots, black spiked bracelets, and two lip piercings. Respect a woman's style if she chooses to wear a fierce pair of high-heel sandals to compliment destroyed boyfriend acid-washed jeans and a black shirt that has some offensive word or phrase in big white letters. Respect a woman's style if she wears a beautiful coral sundress with a mint green belt... but then decides to wear mint green-colored lipstick. You may not always like one's style choices, but at least respect the person who made such fashion and beauty choices.

One of my fears is that I fear someone may think I only discuss things that are cute or stylish. So I have to try to change things up or offer some diverse material. Think about it from the concept of "anything and everything." Am I really offering diverse material if I only mention cute fashions? I sometimes have to come up with material to suit multiple audiences. Anything I don't like or don't really like are expressed in a professional manner because that is how I choose to discuss items.

I don't Follow or Subscribe to blogs or any online fashion profiles (such as LOOKBOOK or Chictopia) unless I generally love the style one has. So if I don't love a blogger who mostly posts a lot of punk-type fashions, I'm not going to follow that person's blog or his/her online profile. I try to leave myself open to everyone and every kind of look, but there are only so many styles and outfits I can tolerate and enjoy.

Agreeing and Disagreeing With Styles.

I am sometimes fearful of what I type, especially when there is a look I don't really like. I will honestly say that I dislike a certain element or elements of an outfit. Honesty in describing looks and outfits is key to me. Besides that, I also fear that my honesty may end up resulting in a loss of respect. It can be tough for someone to like someone if they seem to constantly disagree with one's sense of style or style choices. Something I will never try say is anything along the lines of "you can dress much better than what you're showing here." I am a fashion lover, not a stylist or some kind of coach.

Usually, when there's an outfit I just don't like, I simply don't respond to it. That's not to say that I dislike an outfit completely, though. There are just certain things I tolerate and like in fashion. One thing I posted on another website involved my dislike of wearing denim shorts with tights. A person who saw my post replied saying that it was funny if someone looked to me for fashion advice. I wasn't giving fashion advice; I was being honest about a look I didn't like. And I did so in an honest manner rather than blatantly abuse or mention derogatory or sexist commentary. I've seen some people post comments about looks talking about how ugly someone looks, how someone should be ashamed of himself/herself for leaving the house dressed like that, and the like.

What is most important in critiquing fashion is in criticizing looks without going into discomforting and disparaging comments.

Pressure to Perform.

Maybe I take these things too seriously, but I feel that most people who comment in fashion blogs and on fashion websites often feel under great pressure to be and remain beautiful/stylish for all. Anything that falls short of one's usual style and posts are often subject to immense ridicule. People usually ask what you think about their looks rather than posting an outfit like it is the best outfit anyone can ever wear. People who post outfits online are so confident in sharing their style and their outfits that they made the choice to talk about them online. They may not always get compliments, but at least they are mentioned in some sort of positive light. Applaud the courage of fashion bloggers to post their looks to the world whether they are tremendous looks or terrible looks.

The main point of this chatter is that one should respect others' style choices rather than viciously attack someone for their style just because one doesn't like another's style.

--- Respecting Others' Styles: Style Types ---

Here are things I think about in regards to various styles shown by bloggers:

• Cute: Cute styles are mostly visually appealing styles that are fun and expressive.
The most common kinds of fashions are usually cute looks. Such outfits are easy-on-the-eyes beautiful or fun. These are the most common styles expressed by lots of bloggers and fashion lovers. Of course, what girly-girl doesn't want to look her cutest? Can't a girl dress up as pretty as she wants? Can't a girl have as much fun with her outfit and looks as she wants to?

• Chic: Looks that are chic are appealing enough and fashion forward.
I define chic mostly as fashionable and on-trend styles. They can be casual or classy, but are for the most part- very appealing. Those entrenched into fashion often have the most fun trying to come up with unique fashion pieces that are fashionable and fashion forward. Some of the better bloggers with chic style often have their work featured in publications and on websites.

• Classy: Classy fashions are professional-type fashions for work (and sometimes date fashions as well).
Being classy is about dressing up for office settings or various formal or semi-formal occasions. This is where "cute" usually takes a back seat as being professional-looking or overly glamourous take center stage. Can one exhibit classy style and be put together nicely?

• Sporty: Those with more sporty style are concerned with looking and feeling great in active clothing either while working out or going around town.
Those who try to incorporate sporty fashions are those who try to showcase their style through activewear. Comfort and style while being active are usually the focal points of sporty style.

• Fierce: Outfits with character and personality while remaining feminine usually are what fierce fashion types are like.
If you want to be fierce, this is all about sharp and edgy style while still retaining a modicum of femininity. Fierce fashion isn't about being little girl cute. It is instead about offering tough style while still being feminine. Some feel the need to toughen up looks in case one feels she is dressing too cute. Almost as if one has to show some toughness in fashion to avoid being considered soft.

• Sexy: These involve daring and romantic fashions and posts. They have personality and charm meant to arouse you and your senses.
Confidence inducing and empowering, being sexy with your style warrants confidence and character. This is where your personal charm and your appeal come alive. Being sexy with your style can take on many different avenues. Sexy style doesn't always mean flaunting your best assets of your body or being scantily clad. You could be dressed fairly modestly and still be as sexy as someone who may wear little or no clothing at all. It all depends on how you style your outfit. If looking and feeling sexy is the goal, be careful not to cross into trashy territory. Be hot without overstepping the boundaries of sexy.

• Dark: These are outfits meant to have gritty, dark tones. The outfits are not meant to be "cute" or appealing- they exude toughness.
There is nothing pretty regarding dark styles. There are two dynamics to dark fashion- chic and evil. One can infuse dark style to where it is fashionable and chic. Others who are more evil with dark style often infuse things like tough-looking shoes and clothes to invoke a level of toughness. Some are artistic with darkness while others just want to avoid looking anything innocent or colorful.

• Edgy: Edgy styles have tones and cues not meant to be "cute."
The right amount of edge can make an outfit stand out. Those who specialize in edge like piling on accessories and touches such as studs and spikes. Boldness is the name of the game here. Boldness involves sharp lines and tough cues while not overly overdoing it.

A lot of bloggers and models have different styles that define their usual fashion style. Most bloggers have either a general style or styles that mostly make up their wardrobe and outfits. The items I listed in this section are among some of the many different styles expressed by bloggers.

--- What to Learn/Remember When Visiting a Fashion Blog ---

The most important thing to remember is to respect the style choices made by the blog(s) you visit. You don't Follow a blog unless you really enjoy the content published in the blog and by the blogger. It is okay to have certain tastes in fashion. I certainly discuss certain things I like and/or don't like about an outfit. At least if I agree or disagree with some part of an outfit, I do it respectfully rather than viciously attack someone.

Having your own blog regarding fashion should be fun and enjoyable. However, there will always be those overly critical of others' style. I can't even begin to mention some of the blogs I follow in which the bloggers feel hateful of people who dislike their style for whatever reason. A lot of these bloggers are trying to stand out in their own way while offering their own unique style. All most bloggers ask for is some respect. Same goes for those who don't have a fashion blog but still post their looks online.

So remember these things and respect the style choices made by people.

--- Respecting Others' Styles: Final Thoughts ---

I am not saying you have to love everyone's looks. You do not have to agree with the style choices various bloggers make. You do not have to specifically like the person posting certain looks. The only thing I am stressing here is to respect the fashion choices made by certain people. These people who post their own looks are confident enough in their looks and their style that they decided to post their material online. These people didn't have to post their outfits online and put some stories of the looks behind them, but they did. At least hand some respect to these individuals who chose to post their outfits and showcase their style. You have to learn to respectfully dislike certain things or certain outfits. It is okay not to like a certain trend or a certain look. You may like an entire outfit... except for a choice of makeup or something the person is wearing. That is fine. I've told certain people about certain things I didn't like about outfits. It doesn't mean I hate the whole outfit; it just means I have certain tastes in fashion that make me not like certain outfits more.

A lot of my own fashion posts have showcased my thoughts about certain details and trends. While I may like or dislike certain items, I do at least respect others for showing off their own style in their own way. I am not going to follow anyone's style unless I generally respect that person and his/her style. It doesn't mean I will always agree with style choices made by that individual, but I have enough respect for that person's style that I generally stick around to see one's style through.

Always remember- no matter what I may think about certain outfits or trends, while I do have my opinions about such items and concepts, I still have some sort of respect for those who try out certain trends or looks. It just doesn't mean I have to like them. Sometimes, some of my suggestions are praised. Like I may suggest certain changes to the outfit, and they may like my recommendations or suggestions. You may never know if your eye for style is greater than the blogger who posted his/her/their looks!

So all I'm saying is, you can love or loathe certain clothes and trends; but at least have respect for those who post such looks online and try out such looks. Have respect for the individual bloggers and others who post their looks online. I hope you were able to get some insight from me on respecting the styles and style choices of others even if there are some things in fashion you dislike. Thank you for reading!

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John Marine said...

I agree about having respect for people and others' varying styles. I don't always like other people's style choices, but I try to pick out what I do like when I comment. If I can't say something nice, then I choose to say nothing at all.

I think it's important to be positive and respectful towards people. Fashion is based on personal aesthetic, and there is no wrong or right way to dress.

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