This month I'm giving you the lowdown on my favorite fashion blogs.
What I'm really keen on is their emphasis on DIY, originality and authenticity in regard to fashion and style. I'm totally fed up with typical fashion and women's magazines that spew pretty much the same garbage in every issue, just dressed up a little differently: how to please your man, how to lose weight, how to choose your plastic surgeon, how to buy, buy, buy! (Gag.)
Most of it is misogynistic crap and horrible for the ol' self esteem. I've been guilty of subscribing to the fashion industry's increasingly frightening school of thought myself. I feel the need to change things up and let my thoughts on style evolve.
So without further ado, some very cool blogs from around the web.
I'm just a thrifty girl with a keen eye for beauty and fashion. Just ask my friends (and their teenage daughters). They frequently ask to borrow my clothes, teach them how to apply makeup and to advise them on what to wear for special occasions.
More importantly, they ask me how to stay current and fashionable in this economy without breaking the bank. I'm all about finding personal style and accentuating natural assets.
Don't know what goes best with that little black dress? Want to give yourself a facial for mere pennies? Care to score some clothes for free? Your gorgeousness guru is here to help!
Send me your style stumpers at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What I love about GabiFresh (originally Young, Fat and Fabulous) is that girlfriend refuses to look frumpy despite the fashion industry's focus on fashions made for extremely thin women. She doesn't try to hide her flaws, but rather highlights her rockin' curves and pretty much ignores all the advice given to plus-size women by stylists.
Gabi is pictured on her blog wearing cropped turtlenecks, bold graphic prints and a wide striped bikini - and she looks amazing. She also enables her readers to shop the look she's wearing. Her blog is so popular that she has been featured in Cosmopolitan, Glamour, InStyle, the New York Times, Seventeen, Teen Vogue and Time Out New York.
Off the Beaten Path
Katie challenged herself to wear a different outfit every day for a year. Joe decided to blog about it. The challenge itself was completed in January 2010, but they kept it up for 1,095 days.
Pretty amazing, I'd say. The blog itself is a little difficult to navigate so I suggest you click on browse and go backwards. What I like about the blog, besides the different outfit every day, is that Joe lists where all the items are from.
The pictures are unique and beautiful and the clothing combos are all over the place - granny shawl over floral print pants to runway worthy looks. I think the word, "offbeat," sums up Katie's fashion vibe best.
This is more of a corporate dealie with a bunch of contributors and sponsors, but it's still a good blog. Not only does it give fashion advice for men, but it also discusses topics such as shaving cream versus soap, tanning and how to pair drinks with food (among many others).
The writing is a little hoity-toity for the average reader, but as someone who enjoys fashion, male beauty and masculinity in general, I think this blog is an excellent resource for a guy who wants to whip himself into shape style-wise or an already stylish man who wants to keep up on the latest fashions in suits, ties, cufflinks, dress shirts, shoes, etc.
The main theme of this blog is how to be a well-dressed man.
These women (and men) don't want to look younger, they just want to make the most of what they've got at any age. Some of my favorite blog post gems are Life and Style Tips from a 100-year-old lady, the Right to Wear Bright Colors and Accent with Animal Print.
Blogger Ari Seth Cohen was inspired by his grandmother's vibrant and put-together style. His blog showcases the street fashion of the over-60 set. The fashion advice and lovely photography demonstrate the beauty and unique flair for fashion of the older members of society.
I found advanced style to be truly inspirational, proof that spirit, style and creativity just get better with age.
Ari Seth Cohen is making a documentary about advanced style. I can't wait to see it!
Some like it edgy
The blog description is "where fashion meets art, design and music." These two Scottish fashionistas (Queen Marie and Queen Michelle) have combined royal forces to provide many hip DIY tutorials (see Creating a Crown of Studs), quirky style sightings and geeky references to Middle Earth and Star Wars, for real.
They also use the royal "we" and bash the fashion industry's many missteps as they see fit. They have (sewing) needles and they're not afraid to use them.
Their blog is pure, clean, refreshing genius. Give them a lookie-loo (go on).
So Young, So Wise
The blog address is a bit of a misnomer because this teenager is a total pro. She has been on the cover of Bust, on "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon," "Entertainment Tonight" and NPR. She is editor in chief of Rookie Magazine. She seriously rocks. If I died and could be reincarnated as a cool teenager, I'd be her.
She has celebrity fans like Lady Gaga, Zooey Deschanel and Elle Fanning. She published a book called "Rookie Yearbook One." I like her blog because she is so genuine, nothing about the way she writes or styles or decorates has even the slightest whiff of pretend about it.
The most awesome thing about her blog is that she usually does all her own photography using a tripod and self-timer. Her look books, playlists, musings on being a teenager - all authentic and fresh. And she sings! Check her out, your time will be well spent.
Did you find anything you liked? Do you have a favorite blog that should have made the cut? Let me know, I'd love to hear from you.
McKinney may be reached at diystyle@ sungazette.com.
Her column is published on the second Friday of each month as part of the Lifestyle section's "Fashion Friday" features.