Happy 1st Birthday Yes, Wear That! Ok, technically her birthday is tomorrow, but we will be celebrating this "blogiversay" all week! I will be bringing back some friends...sort of a "where are they now" and will be hosting some awesome giveaways - so make sure you are following on Facebook and Instagram. With all that celebration to come, allow me to get sappy...or reflective for just a few minutes.
I have a lot of favorite quotes. I mean a lot. I love when someone can so eloquently sum up something so large into a few simple words. Allow me to share a few of my favorites:
"There are dreamers and there are realists in the world. You'd think the dreamers would find the dreamers and the realists would find the realists but more often than not, the opposite is true. You see the dreamers need the realists to keep them from soaring to close to the sun. And the realists, well, without the dreamers, they might not ever get off the ground."
I've always been a dreamer...sometimes that's good (like starting Yes, Wear That!)...sometimes not so good (like quitting your job to drive across the country to California with no money saved and no job waiting for you). I think the quote is true though - the world needs dreamers and it certainly needs realists. I am blessed to have both in my life. So when I have a million crazy ideas zooming through my head, I have my dreamer friends who immediately hop on board. And then I have my realist friends who say - "wait, have you thought about this, this, and this?" No, I hadn't.
When I started Yes, Wear That!, I had no real expectations. I needed a creative outlet, I always loved writing, I had two fashion degrees collecting dust, years of retail experience, and wanted a way to showcase my work in events, so starting a blog seemed like the perfect answer. I told myself I would give it a year and if I wasn’t enjoying it, then I would quit – but at least I had tried. I tend to get really wordy…so I am going to try and not do that here. However, I feel like I have to share at least a few thoughts on what I have learned this past year from Yes, Wear That!.
1, You’ve heard it a million times – anything worth doing is going to be challenging and it’s going to be scary. And you are going to doubt yourself no less than a million times a day. I interviewed a few small business owners over the past year, and every single one of them said there have been times when they have been scared out of their minds – but it’s always been worth it. I thought about starting a blog for probably two years before I actually sat down and forced myself to pick a domain name. Why? That torturous evil – self-doubt. Who would care what I had to say? Who would want my style advice? How am I going to build a website? I might have been a good writer in 12th grade English class, but this is the real world now. The questions and doubts rolled on and on…until one day I told my self-doubt to take a seat. Now don’t get me wrong, it’s still there...everyday...but I no longer give it the same attention I once did.
2. Comparison is the thief of joy. Truth. Absolute truth. Nothing is more true than in the world of fashion blogging. Before I started blogging, the only social media I really took part in was aimlessly scrolling through Facebook. Sure I would get temporary bangs of jealousy every once in awhile when someone would post their exotic vacation pics or flash their shiny new engagement ring. However, once you start fashion blogging, you start following other fashion bloggers. Fashion bloggers with way more followers, way more money, way more expensive clothes, way bigger houses, and way “better?” lives. Though I hate to admit it, more than once I have found myself stuck in an Instagram coma…scrolling through photos of some gorgeous blogger…wondering how she got so lucky, where did I go wrong, and how did I ever think I could compete with girls at this level. Joy officially stolen. Friends, please do not do this to yourselves. We live in this world where we can catch five second glimpses of some total stranger’s life – and we compare it to our own and feel somehow cheated. It’s complete lunacy. Sure, a big name fashion blogger can post yet another picture wearing Hunter boots holding a Starbucks cup and get 10,000 “likes” (and don't get me wrong - I enjoy both Hunter boots and Starbucks) – but doesn’t that get boring? Doesn’t that get uninspiring? Isn’t fashion at it’s very core about creativity and self-expression? Do your thing - and please for the love of everything holy stop comparing and do what makes you happy - our differences and our creativity are what makes this world a beautiful place.
"A bird sitting on a tree is never afraid of the branch breaking, because her trust is not on the branch but on it's own wings. Always believe in yourself."
3. Friendship – those connections, relationships, bonds – are everything. It’s been a busy month and the last few weekends I have had the chance to see many of my friends – and as I sit down now I realize I am so incredibly lucky. From a best friend who doesn’t care that we showed up to a musical on Saturday with tickets I had bought for the Friday show (woops)…to a friend that I love like a sister and worry about like a mother and only want the best in this world for. Last weekend I went with a bestie from college to pick out bridesmaid dresses and this weekend I celebrated as a friend’s baby turned one! All of these people have allowed me into their lives and I am forever grateful and humbled by their friendships. I’ve mentioned a few times that I come from a very small town. At the start of 2015, we lost a very good friend from high school quite suddenly. Though many of us hadn’t seen each other in years, we all came back together to have a drink and reminisce. It’s a wonderful thing to grow up in a small town, but it’s even more extraordinary to be able to come back years later and pick up exactly where you left off. And I cannot end my spill on friendship without mentioning the absolutely incredible friends I have made through the blog. Early in the year, I met three lovely ladies and we instantly connected. They have been sources of encouragement, collaboration, and community. I cannot thank them enough for their friendship. Through our mutual interests, we began the Style Socials which have quickly become warm and inspiring places for bloggers and other lovers of fashion.
"For what it's worth: it's never too late to be whoever you want to be. I hope you live a life you're proud of, and if you find that you're not, I hope you have the courage to start all over again."
Before ending, I also have to thank the guy behind the camera. This certainly wasn’t his dream and he certainly would rather be doing a million other things on a Sunday afternoon than following behind me with a camera. If you find someone that supports your dreams…and I mean really supports them…like down in the trenches doing the work with you – it’s truly a gift. He’s heard the words “take one more” and “why does my face look like that” too often to count. Yet he’s there without hesitation every single time. Yesterday I asked him if I should give this up since I hit the year mark and he didn’t hesitate before saying “absolutely not.” To quote the 1997 hit, he’s “the greatest fan of my life” – and that’s something pretty incredible.
Thank you all for stopping by today and allowing me to ramble and for supporting my first year with Yes, Wear That! I promise I won’t be sappy all week – so make sure you stop back for more birthday fun!
Shop the Look:
Skirt - Space 46 Boutique - The Wendy 25" Length - $82 (available in various colors and lengths!) / Top - Revolve Clothing - X Revolve Exclusive Long Sleeve Crop Top - $55 / Shoes - ASOS - Pride and Joy Pointed High Heels - $81 / Statement Necklace (similar) - BaubleBar - Sphinx Bib-Clear - $58