In Another Life

This post was originally published in May 2011.
Here's a little bit of a weekend rewind...

Last Fall I was feeling ambitious and not particularly stylish. In fact I was feeling frumpy. I had recently started teaching Dance classes. The classes left me sweaty and sweatpantsed. I had a full closet with "nothing to wear." And frankly I was bored. Bored with my clothes. Bored with my style. In some ways, bored with my life. So, I decided to start a personal style blog called Leaving the House in THIS?!?  It was creative outlet and a new adventure.

After seven months and 120 something different outfits, I took a break.  The break turned into a hiatus.  And during the past month and a half hiatus I've contemplated the things that I've learned thus far in my career as a personal style blogger.

What you are about to read is the post where I share those things with you. (Oh, and also share some pictures of myself)
You're welcome.

 I DO have something to Wear
During my tenure as a style blogger I participated in not one but two 30 for 30 challenges.  During those challenges I learned the fine art of re-mixing my wardrobe.  I started to discover that pieces I owned could be worn in unexpected ways and in unexpected combinations.  I am no longer tied to the same outfits and the same looks over and over in a stale and repetitive cycle.

{this is a skirt OVER a dress with 2 pairs of layered tights...
I wouldn't have tried something like that before the blogger days}

 Personal Style/Fashion Bloggers are some of the Nicest People in the Cyber-Universe
Never in my life have I encountered such a supportive, encouraging & vocal group of people.  Style bloggers are a fantastic community.  Period.

 It is not easy to look "natural" in front of a camera EVERY day
Necessary parts of a personal style blog are the pictures. You gots to show the wears.  And in order to post the pictures you have to take the pictures.  This means I had to get real comfortable taking pictures of myself real fast.  I learned how to manipulate a tri-pod in a public place without drawing too much attention. I learned how to get the lighting right (or at least almost right). But, some days you just don't feel like having your picture taken. I'm telling you, it is not easy to look natural in front of a camera every day.  And truth be told, those photo shoots are preeeety time consuming.  Especially if you're me and hoping for a handful of pictures in which you look attractive.

{more often than you'd like, you just kind of look possessed.}

 Personal Style Bloggers can get lots of FREE Swag if they work hard enough
It's true.  I had a very small blog and even I got free swag.  I'm telling you, there is swag to be gotten if you have the time, inclination and wherewithal to put in the work.

As I began to re-mix the pieces in my wardrobe, I looked at shopping totally differently. I was no longer drawn to the trendy pieces that I could wear one way for one season.  I discovered that it makes MUCH more sense to find pieces that work with the rest of your closet.  Why not buy a piece that makes 3 outfits rather than just one look?  It seems like a "duh" idea, I know. But I'm telling you that is NOT how I used to shop.

Country Strooooooooong
{this skirt can be remixed into at least 10 different outfits in my closet.  I kid you not!

 I'm A Fashion Follower Not Leader
When it comes to fashion I love a trend.  I love to see a look in a magazine or on a blog and try to recreate it with things in my own closet.  But I am not too awfully daring if left to my own devices.  Generally speaking I've never been one that's ahead of the trends.  I don't innovate, I interpret.  Simply put, I'm a big old follower.  So, I occasionally feel like kind of a poser posting outfits that are heavily inspired by others rather than innovative or cutting edge in their own right.

{Consider this the quintessential personal style blogger outfit.  Check HERE for details explaining why.}

 I Don't Want to do it anymore
Even though there has been much fun along the way, it is time for this project to end. Lest you think I'm leaving with bad memories, know that some good stuff has come out of this seemingly frivolous hobby.  I fell back in love with my closet.  I got to cross something (get 100 followers on a blog) off my list. I made some new friends.  Plus, I discovered a few lessons about myself - and not just fashiony things, though I learned some of that too.  Probably the ultimate lesson I learned is that I don't want to be a full time personal style blogger forever and ever, amen.  It was a fun project and I'm glad I tackled it.  But I'm saying, "AdiĆ³s," to Leaving the House in THIS?!?  It has been a fun ride.  Now please make sure to take all of your belongings as you exit the car to your right.

Have you started a project recently only to find out it wasn't what you wanted to do long term?
Do tell...