Here are my favourite Black Friday deals, everyone! Er, actually no… this is a totally Black Friday-free zone.
Keep reading if you’d like to hear about something OTHER than how much money I could save you right now. Or maybe I’ll ‘save’ you from all the discount emails that are clogging up your Inbox instead…?!!
Just kidding – but really, there are only so many discount codes or sales I could take advantage of in one day. Here’s some light relief:
Women are now criticising other women for… changing their style.
Yes, this has come to my attention this week. Okay, so it may be just one woman criticising one other woman for “changing her style”, but still, I’ll bet she’s not alone. And in the grand scheme of things, as I’ve said so many times before, all it boils down to is, WHY are women so worried about what others wear? Anyway, to give this perhaps-it’s-a-one-off-but-I’ll-bet-you-anything-it’s-not scenario some context:
A good blogging friend of mine (whom I know very well IRL as well) had a comment posted about her in a private Facebook group. Note I said “about”: she was not tagged so the comment was not directed AT her. Instead, she was talked ABOUT with accusations made about her approach to her style and blogging benefits she receives.
What the commenter didn’t do was stop to think whether said blogger might be part of that private Facebook group. Or whether she has friends/connections in that group.
As it was, it was both.
What the blogger was accused of
Long story short, the blogger was accused of changing her style “at the drop of a hat” (I kid you not) and the commenter was 99% sure that she doesn’t wear the gifted items she posts about.
So apart from the fact that both of those statements are untrue, it begs the question…
Why on earth can a blogger not change her style? Why can’t ANY woman change her style “at the drop of a hat”?!
It doesn’t matter whether you have a blog or not, if you want to change your style from one day to the next, it’s entirely up to you. I’ve been known to dress like a tomboy one day and then wear a pretty dress the next. Mostly because, like my friend, I’m walking the dog one day and then going to dinner at a smart restaurant the day after.
(Which makes my life sound MUCH more exciting than it really is – it’s mostly 95% walking the dog and 5% anything else…)
And even then, if you want to accept gifts from brands when you’re a blogger and wear totally different things from totally different brands, then again, that’s entirely your prerogative. Why are we not allowed to experiment with our style, no matter how old we are and whether or not we have a blog? Do style bloggers have some sort of moral or social responsibility to come up with one style and stick to it (for fear of being accused of being fake or inauthentic) that I’m unaware of?
Don’t worry – she gave her right to reply on her Instagram account and in the Facebook group. And with manners and class, too: I’m proud of her.
“Out of order and unprofessional”
But just to rub salt in the wound, my friend has now received criticism for posting/quoting something from a private Facebook group and was even accused of being out of order and unprofessional.
NO, out of order and unprofessional is naming and shaming the commenter. It’s a closed group so no one can look her up and troll her in return (is there a word for people who troll trollers? There should be).
Lastly, it brings me to the subject of women posting in forums where these comments are not only read by other women but also very likely by the very person the comments are criticising. It amazes me that these women think their comments will be invisible to us… We nearly always find out in the end, either via traffic that we can see in our analytics or because the blogosphere is very well connected and it doesn’t take long for us to find out we’re being talked about, positively or negatively.
But women making assumptions about what bloggers do and don’t do is rife (and perhaps getting worse?) – but that’s a topic for next week…
DO YOU CHANGE YOUR STYLE REGULARLY?
DO YOU THINK WOMEN AND/OR BLOGGERS HAVE THE RIGHT TO WEAR WHATEVER THEY DAMN WELL LIKE (NOW WHERE HAVE I HEARD THAT BEFORE…?)
TELL ME IN THE COMMENTS!
P.S. Some people have said that my friend took the comment out of context and that people need to read the whole of the thread, which was pages and pages long apparently. NO, WE DON’T. It was not constructive criticism in any way shape or form and single accusatory comments like this that are aimed at one person in particular and not based on facts (and are in fact totally untrue) do nothing to contribute to any form of discussion.
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Well, this is quite the lively discussion! I will say, I have sometimes been disappointed when bloggers I loved have changed their style, but they are of course entitled to do so, and one can always choose to no longer follow them. I would probably not disclose this in a public forum such as Facebook, but as a previous commenter noted, we're human and sometimes we make mistakes. I think the best course of action is to have a sense of humor about yourself and to be gracious. Life is too short to dwell on stuff like this.
Cheryl Shops | http://www.cherylshops.net
I frequently change my style according to occasion, weather, mood…there are many reasons. It's all a matter of personal taste. I don't see the problem. If you can't say something nice then say nothing – and never say something online that you wouldn't say face to face. Life's too precious to spend it sniping.
Personally, I LOVE changing my style whenever I please. It is one of the fun things about being a blogger – that you get the opportunity to try new and different things. I really wish that women could just be supportive of one another 🙁
Oh my goodness. I didn't see any of the thread or comments but quite frankly I find this whole thing absurd. I can only assume that the people who have made these hideous comments are stuck in some sort of fashion rut, because isn't that what fashion is all about? Being able to be YOU, individual and switching it up however and whenever you damn well please. If you want to change your style every week, go for it! Personally, I love that other fashion bloggers inspire me, and encourage me to step outside of my comfort zone and I love to see them change their style. If you don't like it, don't bitch, don't be nasty, just don't read or follow that person. It really is that simple, and do something else with your life rather than using your energy and time to hurt someones feelings.
I looked at the Instagram page of the person the comment was towards, and I really can't see where the person making the comment gets off! Your friend's style is consistent with that of a person who has a full life..personal, professional, casual, dressy! While anyone can speak their mind, I feel like no one's work should be called out publicly in a negative fashion. If the lady took issue with her, a direct message would have been best. Possibly hurting someone's feelings isn't the kind thing to do. As for the ladies that said she shouldn't have posted it to IG and that you shouldn't have posted it here, well, I disagree. The catty members of the blogging community shouldn't be allowed to hind behind closed groups. If someone can be nasty in one of those groups, then they shouldn't be concerned that the rest of the world learns of their nasty behavior!
I have no idea what is going on here because I am in my own little world. And I much prefer to remain there. However, I am intrigued by the subject of changing style.
As one commenter some replies stated that not changing style is absurd—-then I’m the absurd one here!
Everyone has their own personal style. That style is the FOUNDATION of how you dress. You can certainly change your WAY of dressing, but deep down, the nuances of personal style will still be there.
I’ve actually been called out on my blog for wearing the same style clothing and my response was that that’s my style and will stick to what I like.
My clothing choices vary in other ways such as seasonal, fabrics,textures, lengths ( and I’ve been called out for my penchant of short skirts—I’m over 60) it’s sll a matter of opinion. I’ve been seriously trolled for my political stance but I took care of that with humor!
Oh wait! I do change my hair style quite often. I wear wigs and thus far have not had any shade thrown at me!
Look —it comes down to this. To each her/his own. You may not be fond of bloggers changing things up. But if you like their blogs just keep reading. And remember—even a closed FB group isn’t a safe haven. It’s the freakin’ internet for crissakes—where everyone knows who you are!
Be kind and enjoy life—and the blogs that go with it!
May I add my thoughts? I feel you are being a wee bit hypocritical here. Preaching tolerance and acceptance – then getting involved and stirring up comment when it isn't necessary . Nor justified. The problem seems to be that some bloggers become too self important and cannot accept any form of criticism. Sadly if you put yourself out there it is inevitable – it's human nature I'm afraid. However it's unfair to peach against trolling in all it's forms, then join in with it! I have no grudge with yourself personally at all, and wish you well, but I am entitled you my opinion, and I think that both you and the blogger involved would have been better to simply rise above all this .
I'm sorry but I still think the more dignified way to respond was to not get involved . You fuelled the flames and it was unnecessary . You should have risen above it and said nothing, that way you wouldn't look so hypocritical .
Catherine, as someone who saw the original comment and has followed the discussion within that group, I’m really saddened that you’ve chosen to raise this to a whole new audience. The lady who made the comment apologised to Liz. It was a comment made in a closed group, where people feel as if they are talking to close friends. We all say things which we later regret. I’m afraid I feel your article is deliberately hurtful and almost trolling of the original poster. Whatever your personal feelings on the subject of change, you could have written an article on that without referring to this incident. It saddens me immensely that someone is being ripped to shreds because of a throwaway comment she made in a private group.
I think you will find that many people above totally disagree (and, I'm sure, many more who are reading but haven't commented) – I cannot raise something to a whole new audience who do not have access to the original source – therefore your private Facebook group is safe. I am commenting on my friend's Instagram post which isn't private. And if the comment was so "throwaway" then why would my friend feel the need to defend herself on her Instagram post?
No names have been mentioned [BY ME] at any time. It amazes me that the need to keep bad behaviour private is more important than showing other women that this sort of commenting is unacceptable. Who knows how many of my friend's other followers think the same thing the commenter did? How many then had the idea put into their head by the person in question? Doesn't she have the right to reply to try and reach those people?
Unacceptable behaviour towards other women is still unacceptable whether it's in a private group or not, and my friend dealt with it on her account with dignity and grace – showing herself to be the better person a THOUSAND times over. As I said to someone above, how about women stop making these comments in the first place, rather than bloggers constantly having to ask for apologies? The only way we can do this is to call out the bad behaviour.
This is far from the first time that I have called out someone, and the point of the post (as per the title) is that women are permitted to change their style if they wish. People decide whether or not to read my post based on the title, and I am not forcing anyone to read it.
I find it very interesting how the only people that disagree with the subject being brought up in the blogosphere are the women within the Facebook group – as my friend was part of that private group she had every right to bring it to her readers' attention. Facebook really isn't totally private (as several other commenters have mentioned here) and all of us would do well to remember that, myself included.
I would hardly call my post trolling. At no point have I mentioned the person's name. I have simply described the facts and then given my opinion – which in its bare bones is: How about women stop spreading nastiness, rather than bloggers accept that they'll receive abuse? Let's teach women to do that instead, not teach them how to apologise.
Teach women? How patronising!
I'd say commenting on someone on a closed FB group is the equivalent of doing it in a public place with a group of people. You don't always know if someone is listening, maybe even the person in question.
There was another case of trolling last week, where a blogger was even DM'd and told she was lying! Why do women have to be so bitchy, if you don't like the blog, stop following it! One of the critisms was that her style hadn't changed! Ever a case of damned if you do and damned if you don't!
And yes everyone has the right to change their style at the drop of a hat, and yes most of us do it on a daily basis. I don't have the same style when I'm slobbing around at home compared to when I'm going out for a meal! It's no big deal.
And to be honest, bloggers are probably experimenting with their style more than the rest of us, it sort of comes with the job!
We have the right to change our style… Just like we can change our minds! I change all the time. I don't like being limited or pigeon-holed. It's all a low-level form of contral and just because it's woman to woman doesn't make it ok. Older women, Im over 40 (typical middle-aged) rly get checked for being appropriate. Not having it.
My subtle mission? To get people to read to read my blog? Erm… yes, that's why I write it!?
I write a weekly post where I share my thoughts for the week so that people can read them (why it's called the Saturday *Share*).
I think you will find that MOST bloggers' mission is to get people to read their blogs… I didn't force anyone to come here, I haven't even shared it on social media yet. So how you came to find it if you've never been here before means I must be getting talked about somewhere. I must be doing something right 😉
Great blog, Catherine. Being someone who specialises in change, there is this great saying: change or die. Applies to companies as much as how we feel about ourselves and our styles. Why on earth should you stick with something if it is no longer working for you? I don't know that I have a set "style" in my wardrobe – I project 333'd the hangers out of my wardrobe, and I'm not a fashion blogger (maybe one day…). Change is where innovation and creativity live, yet so many people fear it. I personally love it.
It’s hard for me to comment as I didn’t see the original FB thread nor the IG post. It seems to me that one needs to take care when making specific comments about someone in the digital age as nothing is no longer private. That being said, consideration should also be given in understanding the intended meaning in comments that might be awkward in wording. I appreciate the discussion, Catherine, and I hope that it will encourage readers to pause and think. I hope that you have a wonderful weekend.
I’m a member of the group, it's a fabulous small group of very supportive women. There have been numerous times someone in need has been helped. I’m really saddened to see a members words being used without her knowledge. I understand Elizabeth being upset, but this had all been pretty much handled on the group. The lady in question apologised. Then there was not one, but two insta posts. And now this. I just think it’s creating such ill feeling. People have already left what they thought was a safe place to talk because of this.
I don't believe it was my friend who started the ill feeling, and initially my friend had accusations made about her without her knowledge.
Bloggers are, generally, fed up with the constant snipey remarks that people apologise for when they're called out on it. How about women stop making these remarks and not actually causing the ill feeling in the first place?
I have so much to say here…just trying to figure out how to do it succinctly. First of all, Lizzy is fabulous. And like all of us she changes up her style. Seriously, who dresses in the exact same manner every day? The thought is absurd.
As for the original comment on FB, I am so done with snarkiness. There was no call for it, no reason, as a matter of fact when would there ever be a reason for it? Why comment if you're simply spewing negativity? It's one thing if the person didn't care for say, a particular outfit, but her comment was personal and intended to be cruel.
I read the Instagram thread that you linked to and I have to say things were no better there. I'm sorry, but just because a FB group is closed, that does not give one license to verbally attack other human beings. The few times that I have been trolled, damn straight I called them out (without mentioning names) and I will continue to do so. If you've got the cojones to publicly insult someone, then you had better be prepared for the repercussions when you insult the wrong person…closed FB group or not.
I also took issue with the statement in the Insta thread that said you were being patronizing because "blogs aren't there to educate". True, some just share articles strictly about fashion/beauty/food…whatever and that is fine. But others, like you and I, do create written content meant to educate and/or entertain. I personally found that particular comment to not only be somewhat confrontational, but it was also mean, plain and simply. Honestly, when will enough be enough?
Blogs aren't there to educate?!!!!!! Wow, I haven't seen that yet Debbie… someone needs to catch up with the 21st century because I'll be damned if we can't at least TRY to educate women who choose to treat other women appallingly by writing our thoughts in posts like these. Thanks hon for your excellent comment x
fashion blogs are not educational. They save you time searching out items if you are short of shopping time. End of .
For starters: As your live changes, your style preferences change. This statement is especially true in midlife. A stay-at-home mom, for instance, gets divorced and with a sudden she has to go back into the work force. If she wouldn't adapt to her new life situation, she wouldn't get a job and go under. It's hard enough finding a job at that time in life anyhow. A female soldier filled out her twenties and now becomes a store manager. Just a week ago, I didn't recognize my student when we (my hubby and I) did some show dancing at a sports bar. Why? In calls, the student only wears combat uniform, but he was out with friends in civil clothes. Furthermore, when blogger won't take the risk to try s.th. out how could they convince their followers to do so. I follow Lizzie since I don't even remember how long. She has great style, is very professional and knows what to wear how and when. It's important that someone with a great sense shows how to wear what even when it is not their own style preference. My style changed as my lifestyle changed. There are signature pieces that always remained: Utility jacket, leather clothing, long hair (except for 2016), jean jackets, high heels even in Alaska, gloves, hats, Italian length for my dresses and skirts, big belts. Your style has evolved since I follow you. You wore bold colors and now you are more into pastels. Nevertheless, you are recognizable even when your face isn't shown on the photo. It's the way of combining things. But style evolution it's a good thing. Style is not nailed in stone, it's in flow all the time, but nevertheless steady-state at the same time. Ok, I may be too scientific in this statement. Think of a water tap purring water into a sink. Water leaves the sink thru the outlet. The water table in the sink remains the same. nevertheless, the water in the sink exchanges over time. but the water table in the sink remains at the same level. It's in equilibrium with the inflow and outflow. So is style. It's in equilibrium with your life situation. You can learn to have style. Once you have it, you can apply it to everything. Thus, a style blogger can look great in another style as well and inspire her followers to try out things for themselves. If they wouldn't do it, who else would?
Oh come on at least credit me with my comments if you're now publishing them! You are not even a member of the closed group so have no idea of the context of the discussion.
You may notice I didn't credit my friend with her name. You may notice that I didn't name you either. I do it so that readers can form their own opinions without being influenced by perhaps knowing the blogger in question. I don't name and shame people.
Something you didn't seem to notice was my P.S. where I wrote that no, we don't need to know the context. And I replied to your comment criticising her on her Instagram because I think she'd had enough by being wrongly accused. Those sorts of comments give bloggers a bad name because it reinforces people's misconceptions about us all being dishonest (surely as a blogger yourself you can't wish that to continue?). As I know her well I was filled in with the context privately and before the Instagram post went up. It's STILL no excuse and STILL makes no difference to the fact that she accused someone (with the intention of it being meant negatively because the commenter said she she found her "infuriating") of something they didn't and don't do without even stopping to think that they might be part of the group and could read it. Or that they might be influencing people who also know her.
And to condone that sort of commenting? Not the type of group I and many others would want to be part of, so who can blame her for leaving. There is NEVER an excuse and NEVER any context in which bad mouthing other women without any factual basis is acceptable.
It seems to be a common theme lately, huh? Why is it that there is so much negativity.
Personally, I feel so much happier lately that I can change up my style. I always say that our personality isn't one dimensional, so either should our clothing style be that way.
Just like we are friends, lovers, daughters, mothers, etc….we can also be classic style, boho, eclectic, tomboyish, and feminine all in one week!!
Thank golly, that most of us get that!!
I really don't understand the problem. Honestly. In fact, recently I've felt ready to switch up my style a bit and take a few more risks. I feel like post-baby I have tended to shy away from things I loved before whilst I adjusted to my new lifestyle. Even still, my style changes – I work in project management, I am a mum, I go out (every now and then!) – it would be odd if it didn't! Haha. I love following bloggers (like you) who showcase all the different facets of their style. Keep 'em coming! x
Kat | Kitty & B
I saw the reply on Instagram…. Brilliant. The initial moaner….Pathetic! I change my style on an (almost) daily basis and I'm not going to change any time soon. That's what fashion is all about. Who needs to put people in a style box anyway? Maybe it's just sour grapes from someone who wishes they looked as beautiful as your friend does in EVERYTHING she wears?! Xxx
I read her story on Facebook too and was appalled by how anyone could treat another person like they treated Liz! And she looked simply gorgeous in that dress, I didn't think of it as any different than "her style"… But now I can understand better why so many of my supposed colleagues in blogging were so upset (even furious) at me for changing not just a dress, but a whole blogging subject at that! I went from food to fashion and this caused so much negative feedback from other bloggers I was shocked. Not from any readers, mind you, many of whom are still my readers and even more loyal and interactive than before. Why so much venom from our fellow women colleagues?
I know who you are referring to as I saw her response on IG. Changing style is growing in my view and we should experiment. It shows a good example that we're not in a rut. And as she said, they don't have to read and don't have to watch. She's so darn funny though and good for her addressing it head on.
I have come under attack this same way in a closed group that I am not a part of but know people who are and it was promptly brought to my attention. And the reason it was brought to my attention was in an effort to protect me from an IRL attack that very well could have happened. It did not, however, thankfully. For some strange reason though, the attack actually made me feel more me powered as a woman than ever before. Because I chose to read it this way: they knew who I am and felt it necessary to discuss what they dislike about me and my blog in the so-called privacy of their group. I never knew who they were, was never told their names, and still don't know. Nor do I feel like it is any concern of mine who they are. What people say about me behind my back is really none of my business. And if it is terrible things that are being said, then I feel that it has everything to do with them and nothing whatsoever to do with me. So rock on, my wonderful blogging friends, and be your true and authentic selves even in your ever-evolving and changing styles! Lord knows my style changes more than anyone! Another great post, Catherine. Thank you.