The last time I was in France a few years ago, I came home bursting with style inspiration. The way the ladies dressed in Paris was just so — different, so well thought out, so effortless, that I came home determined to revamp certain parts of my wardrobe. I remember seeing everyone wearing blazers, especially with less dressy bottoms; it was a trend that made its way to the states later that year (remember when EVERYONE was posting about blazers in late 2010/early 2011?).
On this trip, it was a little different. Sure, French girls still have that special something that makes them seem so chic no matter what they’re wearing, but as far as sartorial inspiration went, there was nothing that really surprised me. In fact, I felt like I had already seen most of the styles and outfits before — on blogs.
It’s no secret that the fashion blog world has exploded in the last few years. Blogs have been around for well over a decade, but this particular subset has seen massive growth. When I wrote this post, a reader named Valerie mentioned that on her latest trip to Paris, she felt like the style differences from country to country were decreasing. Maybe her comment was on my mind as I traveled around France, but in all honesty, I have to say I completely agree. It didn’t feel like the last time I was in France, where I felt like you could easily tell a French girl from a traveler. In fact, 9 times out of 10 I couldn’t tell until I heard someone speaking. Half the time I was shocked to realize that French girls had nothing on the American ones!
There are plenty of street style bloggers who are still featuring great content that inspires and don’t follow any particular “norm” or trend (The Sartorialist, whose blend of fashion photography meets photojournalism comes to mind), but my personal opinion is that these blogs are fewer and farther between.
So, what do you think? Do you think the blog world plays a role in homogenizing what’s on trend globally? I don’t think it’s necessarily good or bad, it’s just an observation I made, and if the blog world is indeed playing a role, WOW that’s powerful.
And an aside about blogging in general: The blog world does so many things well, but I think lately, as the industry continues to grow and more people start blogs, the impetus is to copy what has worked for others, as if there’s some universal formula to blog success. That’s not to say that there aren’t a number of things you should focus on if you want to see your blog grow (of course there are, and of course they’re proven to work!), but my hope is that all bloggers continue to push themselves creatively and do what works and what is true for them. And I know, it’s tough. I’m not immune to falling into the trap either. But we have to try! Otherwise, what previously were places to inspire will all be pretty boring, don’t you think?