On fashion blogging and not taking myself too seriously




On paper, this is my job: source new/desirable clothing pieces, style them up, photograph them, edit them, write about them, and share them - “glorified clothes horse”, I believe, is the term that is bandied about the internet by those less than enamoured with the blogging game. If I’m ever trying to explain what I do to somebody’s grandparents or the lady behind the desk at the bank, my go-to is “I’m basically used for advertising - but in my own way…?”.

Inevitably, bloggers all met with the same retort: “what, somebody pays you to send you free clothes?” Cue one of two routes: either trying to explain the power and merits of influencer/blogger marketing, the potential return on investment for engaged brands and the ever-changing digital landscape, or, save yourself the time and the breath, shrug, laugh, and evasively respond “well, there you go!”.

When I first started to draw an income from blogging - and, honestly, even up to the past few months - somebody questioning how I made money felt like they were questioning the validity of my career. I felt like, masked beneath the questions, what I was really being asked was “you can’t seriously be making money out of that? Is that even a real job?”. Working part-time, I found that the days I was working as a blogger instead of in the office were referred to as my “days off”, as if being my own accountant, manager and photographer wasn’t enough to warrant a grown up girl career badge.

Dress - ASOS (Petite, Tall and Regular)
Sandals - ASOS
Necklace - Mi Moneda*




Over the past few weeks, however, there’s been a shift in the way I regard myself. Cards on the table, the world is a huge shit-show at the moment and blogging about dresses, my chubby girl weight and how I feel about comfy footwear has all felt vapid. Not only vapid, but so far removed from my real life.

Online I was pushing my new favourite dresses and the affiliate links to find them through, whereas in my personal life, I was championing Labour policies and raging over the biased media representation of the UK terror attacks. That’s not to say I was silent on social media, because my Twitter feed was a sea of Labour support and unashamedly ‘Please Vote Corbyn’ efforts - but I still felt that there was a major disparity between the way the world was turning, and my efforts to make sandals seem interesting. Because who really, really, gives a fuck about sandals, even at the best of times?

My job is sometimes difficult. It’s time consuming. It’s stressful. It’s anti-social at the best of times, which is ironic, given that it’s built on the bones of social media. The truth is, however, that I’ve really stopped taking myself seriously. What I do isn’t ground-breaking, and most of the time, I can appreciate that I’ve worked hard to now be my own boss whilst at the same time accepting that I’m lucky to be able to do the job that I do.

Funnily enough, in a moment of perfect timing, two guys just sat down next to myself and Hannah whilst we work away on our laptops and started quizzing us about what we do. “So who pays you for that? How do you even make money? So does she make more money than you? Do you want to beat her? How long do you think this will last? Can it really go on forever?” Normally this would piss me right off, and I’d shoot an aggravated text message over to Keiran lamenting the amount of nosy parkers in the world. Instead, however, I answered the questions (albeit as succinctly as I could), exchanged raised eyebrows with Hannah and continued to edit.

Shop the post





To them, two bloggers drinking coffee and eating fancy salads most likely looks like the absolute life of leisure. Whilst they head back to the office to continue their dick-swinging contest, they probably think we’ll soon close our laptops to plait each others hair and gossip about Troy from the lacrosse team. As far-fetched as that seems, the truth is that I’ll soon head home and take some Instagram shots of sunglasses or pyjamas to prep some content for my feed, so I can’t be that pissed. Before you burn me at the stake, obviously there is more to content creation than just mindlessly snapping pretty things - however, to some degree, it is kind of that.

And I feel no shame in admitting that. I take my work seriously because it’s my career, it’s my passion, and I feel that in the online spaces we create for ourselves, we can action real change in each other and the world. Alongside that, though, I also don’t take myself too seriously. I’m not a maverick campaigner, I’m not a frontline nurse, I don’t spend my times securing huge international trade deals - I create content for you fabulous huns and I share my life on social media. I know there is value in what I do, and I value myself for doing it, but I also know that that value is relative - if somebody said to me tomorrow “is you’re job really that serious?”, my gut reaction, naturally would be incensed hatred and rage, but if I was being honest with myself, the answer would be “kinda, kinda not”.

The world would keep turning if I closed my laptop lid for the last time, and moved on to pastures new. I probably wouldn’t be that missed, if at all. As strange as that may seem for me to admit, it’s also an act of freedom for myself. In not taking myself so seriously, I’ve alleviated the pressure to always create content that has value - that really, truly means something. That’s the content that gets my loins a’burning, but it’s also content that’s difficult to produce every day of the week if your life is just kind of ticking along in the background.

So here it is. A confession. I love my job, I’m dedicated to it 100% and I never half-arse the content that I create. I wear many hats, from accountant to writer of contracts to tripod-wielding-photographer, and often, I’m stressed. At the same time, I also know what I do isn’t ground-breaking. I know a lot of other people have it harder - as frustrating as micro-managing brands can be - and I now make an effort to always keep myself in check.

Shitty comment on my Instagram post? Deep breath, take a step back, and re-evaluate. I in no way subscribe to the silencing ‘somebody always has it worse, don’t complain’ ideology - instead, I’m just taking a moment to look outside of my own little privileged bubble and see the world around myself.

Now, back to those sandals…

Until next time lovelies x





15 comments

  1. You would definitely be missed if you closed your laptop for good. And it'd be nice to see you unload a political soapbox or two in this space as well. It's YOUR slice of the internet, after all. If you care about fashion and fighting facism, write about both! Xx

    - Chantel
    www.TheActiveSpirit.com

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  2. The thing about it that is most important to recognise is that not everyone can do your job, it clearly takes skill and talent and is a lot of hard work. You do it remarkably and should be proud of all your achievements big and small. Ignore Sharon at the bank, she's not worth it, as long as you are happy with it that is the most important thing. So many people are stuck in jobs they hate it, doing what you love involves taking risks and putting in a ridiculous amount of work. I love this dress by the way! Great post x

    ALittleKiran | Bloglovin

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  4. I LOVED this post. It's refreshing to hear from someone who is self aware and realises what we do isn't that groundbreaking. I recently had a run in with a blogger who took herself super seriously and couldn't fathom a joke at what we do.... Where is the fun in that? Kudos for you being honest lovely!

    Sarah | More Than Adored

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  5. Your photos are beautiful! Can I ask how you edit them? I truly struggle with the editing part of photography, they never look consistent!

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  6. L O V E T H I S P O S T - being a blogger is hard work and not everyone can do it! I love everything about your blog, from the photos to the writing. It is very refreshing to hear bloggers actually talk about these things too not enough people do.

    Dionne - DeeDee Louise

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  7. firstly, you'd definitely be missed if you gave this all up!! I work part time also and as well as my teeny blog do event styling and the odd bit of graphic design... it's so frustrating that people don't see the other work that goes in to it. But I'm also my worst enemy and just almost make fun of myself and agree...!

    Really enjoyed reading this post, you have a real talent of getting thoughts in to writing, lady!

    Laura | roseandweston.blogspot.co.uk x

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  8. I loved this Chloe - your attitude, honesty and way with words is just my favourite! I feel the same about my job in marketing when I'm talking work with my friends, who nearly all work in teaching, social care, the NHS etc; I'm happy to say that I work hard and my job can be stressful and I have skills, but I'm also fine to admit that ultimately it really isn't that important, especially compared to what others do (although frankly, some people I work with could do with realising that too at times...). You look beaut in yellow - and please dont shut your laptop forever because I love your posts and can always tell how much work and expertise has gone into your content!
    Sophie xxx | Sophar So Good

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  9. Yaaas Chloe, this is such a corker of a post and something I needed today. I have been in a bit of an odd place with content over the past month or so. All my content kinda seems a bit pointless with all the madness going on in the world right now! But you are so right, it doesn't need to be taken seriously - that is the beauty of blogging. You look lovely too gal, that dress is perfect. Immy x

    www.immymay.com

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  10. Love the look ! Especially the bag !

    Sara,
    www.thecrimeofashion.com

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  11. This post was so honest and amazing to read! So many people think blogging is about taking any old photo and putting some writing to it. But you guys work incredibly hard in the industry and it's amazing what you produce! Keep going girl, I love reading your blog and it would be a dream to do what you do for many!
    http://www.pagesfrombeth.co.uk

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  12. This post is perfect! It sums me right up!

    I love what I do! I think my jobs are amazing, I love doing them and I couldn't ask for a better way to earn money. I do find them stressful and hard sometimes but equally, like you say, people do have it harder! xxx

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  13. I love this post Chloe, I am new to blogging and sometimes when I tell people I get that funny look. like really is that your job? I guess this will never change but a work is work and we enjoy it!

    Dreamsbybrunette.com

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  14. Love this post, such lovely words. Your dress is so pretty too! :)

    www.meganwesley.com

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  15. Your honesty and humour are what I love about you and why I keep coming back to your blog.
    There's a lot that goes into blogging that people don't see or understand. I think sometimes it's the behind the scenes stuff, like self promotion. My husband sees me post content and then questions me still on the laptop most nights.. What am I doing? What could I still need to do? - It's all a never ending circle.

    Caroline.x
    www.carolineelgeywhite.com

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