The Narcissistic Personal Fashion Blogger

Katy from ModlyChic does this "Friend Friday" thing in which she sends out a list of questions to any fashion blogger who signs up, and then she links all the answers. As I totally forgot to take outfit photos today I thought I'd put up this trés apropos shot of me looking smug and answer this week's questionnaire:

[photo by Andrew Chan for Buy Definition]

1. Do you think personal fashion blogging is inherently narcissistic?
Aren't all blogs a little narcissistic at their core? Bloggers, for the most part, have something they want to share with the world: be it knowledge and advice or entertainment, and each blogger who makes their site public feels that others might care what they have to say. Specifically regarding personal fashion bloggers (i.e. the bloggers who post what they wore), we take and post photos of ourselves on the regular, and we take time out of our days to write our thoughts out in a public realm. Most of us are hopeful that someone, somewhere will see it and either like it or identify with it. If narcissism is defined as simply being motivated by self-interest and concerned with how we're perceived, we are all certainly at least a wee bit narcissistic. I think we'd be hard pressed to find a personal fashion blog that is completely altruistic.

2. I think we can all agree, that certainly some blogs are personal odes to the blogger. In your opinion what makes a blog narcissistic.
I love the blogs that are blogger centered! My favorite personal fashion blogs are the ones in which the writer is the main character and their clothes are the best supporting actors. On its own, a cute dress is really kind of boring, but if I find out where that dress went and where it came from and what it did before or the blogger's dream for the dress, then I'm interested! I guess a blog would be over the line in narcissism if the writer were "braggy"... if every post were like, "Dang, I'm so beautiful!" or "Gosh, I'm way more awesome than [such and such blogger]". For the record, I have never seen a personal fashion blog like that, and I imagine the writer would be flamed or would remain obscure if that were the case.

Side note: I do not mind blogs that celebrate the writer's own successes, either, and I don't see this as "braggy". If my favorite bloggers want to post about how excited they are that they are appearing in -whatever- magazine or are working with -whatever- brand, then I want to celebrate with them, too!

3. Would you classify your blog as narcissistic? Why?
For the most part, yes. I mean, how hilarious is it that I have taken hundreds and hundreds of photos of myself and have posted them to the web? I've been blogging since 1999, and even my first blog (that didn't include photos) was about what I did in my life. Me- me- me- me- me- me- me! However, there is no denying that some real community is going on over here. The comments! The tweets! The emails! I honestly feel that I'm friends with the people who stop by, and because I've put so much of who I am out there, I really hope y'all feel like you actually know me. If I had a party and you all lived in town, you'd all be invited!

I will say this, though: I do try to make the city of Austin the prima ballerina of this show. One of my main goals of Adored Austin is to showcase what a fun, eclectic city Austin is. When I was starting out a year ago, I honestly thought that this would simply be a place where I posted a calendar of fashion events in Austin and did funny video reviews. I threw my outfit posts in as filler (and I still maintain that I don't dress that interesting. After all, I'm no Tavi!). Later, it unintentionally became part of the identity of my site, but I'm happy to keep doing it. It's fun, and the community aspect of being able to participate on Weardrobe, Lucky Style Spotter, Chictopia, and Lookbook has been one of my favorite parts.

4. How can we combat the idea that because we share personal style thoughts/pictures we are automatically full of ourselves?
A great fashion blog showcases the writer as having a healthy dose of good self-esteem. Who wants to read a personal style blog where the writer says things like "I am a hideous beast, and my outfit sucks" ?

This all comes down to intention. What's the purpose of your blog? For a great example, look at The Glamourai. She is gorgeous, has a very successful business, has a well read blog, and is perhaps the best dressed woman in New York City (bonus fact: she's originally from Austin- holla!). This is a woman who has every right to be braggy, but in no way whatsoever does her blog come off as "full of herself" even though, essentially, it is all about her. Her intention is to showcase style and to share her tutorials, and she happens to look awesome while doing so!

5. How do you explain what you do to others in a way that doesn't come across as narcissistic?
This is tricky! I struggle with this often because when my new friends find out I have a blog, the next question is inevitably, "What's it about?" I usually laugh and says, "Well, it's kind of me- centered. The concept is simple. I take photos of what I'm wearing and then I say what I'm doing. I keep it fun, and I also cover the fashion happenings in town."

So far, no one has called me narcissistic... to my face!

Be sure to check out other bloggers who have answered these questions: