Three years, eight months and four days later. I can scarcely believe it. This is the one thousandth post on YLF! Time flies when you’re having fun.
When Greg suggested I start a blog, I said, “okay!”, and then I said “what’s a blog?”. This is what poor Greg was up against. And I didn’t actually like to write, so how on earth was I going to enjoy writing a blog. But Greg had the insight to recognize that I have a lot of experience and passion to share. He also knows that I’m social and love to yak. So as long as I treated each post as if I was having a simple, daily conversation with you, the words would flow freely from my keyboard. So with Greg’s technical expertise and my voice, YLF was born.
I looked back at my posts since April 2006 and noticed a few things about my blogging style. My voice has remained the same, but the subject matter has changed and broadened. In the beginning I blogged about short instant style tips, fashion trends and body type dressing for the everyday person. My focus is still the “how” of style — it’s easy to purchase an item for your wardrobe, but it’s how you’re going to wear the item that counts. But these days the posts are sometimes more serious and sometimes less serious than they were in the beginning.
The blog today also has more of me in it. When I write for YLF, I try to make it more about the reader and the subject, and less about me as an individual. So for the first two years of YLF I deliberately kept all details about my physical appearance off the blog. I finally revealed myself in a series of blog entries on Paris. You got a glimpse of what I looked like in a post I wrote about my Anne Fontaine experience, and then full portrait shots of Greg and I by the end of that week. It was unexpected and a long time coming, which made it all the more fun.
And while there is more of me in the blog these days, it is also more about you. It was just over a year ago that forum member Antje wrote the first guest post, and since then 14 others have added their voices. This has made for richer and more compelling content, where the guest poster’s words often speak louder than mine. I look forward to accelerating this trend and incorporating as much diversity as possible into the blog.
I’ve learned two big things about blogging. First, it takes discipline and hard work. Those of you who have blogs know how much time it takes to put together a decent post and participate in the discussion that follows. Especially when you have a “day job”. Second, you need to develop a thick skin and take the high road. When you dish out your thoughts and ideas for the world to see, you have to take the heat that goes along with it. People who comment don’t always agree with what you say and some rudeness is inevitable. But being defensive is not the answer and learning the art of self restraint has proved invaluable.
Most of all, I’m grateful for what YLF has become. So many wonderful people, interacting with intelligence, compassion and sincerity. I just love being a part of it.
The floor is open to you. Do you have any questions about fashion blogging or being a fashion stylist? What type of post do you enjoy the most and why? How can we improve YLF? I’m ready to write the next thousand blog entries and making sure I keep you engaged is my main goal. Let’s hear it!
Greg is sneaky about taking candid photographs and these are some behind the scenes moments that he captured. They include writing a blog entry in a Hong Kong hotel room, fixing lips before my NBC interview, and “take a photo of that!” in a department store. And always, always with tea in hand.