Please, Define Fashion for Me!

I would like to initiate a discussion here on this day for
celebrating visibility!  I have read a
few comments in the blogosphere lately which add up to this:  IF you are older….if you do not spend big
bucks on your clothes…if you do not follow trends…if you are not a woman of the
world…then you cannot call yourself a fashion blogger!  Really?
It got me to thinking about the definition of the word
fashion.  If you look it up, you will
find a variety of definitions, and synonyms such as craze and fad.  So, if we are more into styling and less into
fads, then are we style and NOT fashion bloggers.
So confusing.  Can a
middle class, middle-aged, wife, mother, high school teacher from Texas be a
fashion blogger?  Some would say NO.  After two years of blogging, I think I am suffering
from an identity crisis…at least an identity as defined by other people.
So, what say you?  How
do you define fashion?  What is the
difference that you see between fashion and style?  Do the only true fashionistas come from large
markets with big budgets?  Must we fashion looks from the pages of Vogue to be taken seriously?

 Now, on to the clothes. I realize a returning trend is all things Black& White.  But, today, I am adding my twist
and being visible in Black & Cream. 
The Talbots’ capris were purchased on sale early in the summer.  The Chico’s Travelers jacket was $11 at one of my
favorite resale boutiques.  The fun camisole
was $6 at Ross a couple of years ago.  I
love the embroidery detail.  The bracelet
is Premiere Jewelry. 

It gives me JOY to look and feel my best…to play with
fashion and style and to write about it! 
Whatever box others want to place me in, I am good with.  I guess I just see things a bit differently
from those in the real fashion industry.   After you tell me your definition of what
fashion is, go see all the fabulous fashionistas at VISIBLE MONDAY and MONDAY MINGLE!! And above all, HAVE AN AMAZING DAY!


  1. Regarding your question on Fashion and Style.
    It's soooo easy to be fashionable, just look at any magazine and copy it. But, to have Style one must
    work at it so that it looks effortless. Being
    over 60 it took a long time to develop style.
    Our generation needs more fashion, style women like you. Thanks

  2. I agree with Pat – to be "fashionable" just takes some $$$ and copying the trends shown in magazines. To have style takes creativity, self-knowledge, trial and error, confidence, and persistence. I think you know what I think about who "deserves" to have a fashion/style blog: anyone who wants to, who has a passion for the topic!

    Love your black-and-cream — it's a sophisticated look and very flattering. Thanks so much for sharing with Visible Monday, you are a treat!

  3. If being a fashion blogger means being confined to a narrow definition of "fashion", then forget it! If being a fashion blogger means writing about clothes and how to create a personal look with creativity and joy, then count me in. Pat is right. Anyone can copy. Finding what works for ourselves outside of the rigid rules is what takes style up a notch, to an art. That's the part I love to read about and share.

  4. I can't say it better than Pat. I personally am working on trying to be stylish as opposed to fashionable (well, a little fashionable doesn't hurt).
    Black and white…I mean cream, always look fabulous together!

  5. I agree with both these ladies. Call yourself and your blog what you will, your followers will turn to your pages with interest whatever your subtitle.

    Two more points – first, I once met a lovely Frenchwoman who, when younger, had worked as a vendeuse for Christian Dior. She told me that one of her duties was to ring her clients and tell them about the new collections. Sometimes she would have to break it to a woman that the season's colours or shapes would not be the best for her and warn her that she would have a very difficult time finding something new to wear. It was inconceivable to wear last season or go elsewhere, of course. I often wondered how these fashionistas managed – did they deliberately wear unflattering, but a la mode, outfits or did they go into hiding for the duration? A life so ruled by fashion just ain't no life in my book.

    Second, I am pretty new to style blogs. For most of my adult life I have fitted my very tall, plus size self into a series of 'uniforms' – the professional's skirt suit, the mom's jeans and t shirt and so on – without thinking too much about it. But now I am loving picking out new combinations to wear on my 20lb lighter body, I am loving seeing what other 50somethings are wearing, I am loving looking at their clever detailing. And do you know what I've noticed since my eyes have been opened by all the wonderful style bloggers out there? So many women of all ages, in the real world, just don't care what they wear. So here's to Pam and other brave women like her who put themselves on the line in their bid to make the world a better looking place. Style does not come at a price

  6. The opposite of "trend" is "style". "Style" is a much deeper, wider concept than "fashion". It includes being comfortable with your body, knowing what looks good on you (and avoiding what doesn't look good on you …no matter HOW trendy it might be!) and dressing in a way that reflects your personality. Don't the French (who ought to know a thing or two about the subject!) believe a woman must attain a certain level of maturity before she can even be considered stylish? Anyone who disdains older women's knowledge of style reveals more about their prejudices against age, than their knowledge of fashion.

  7. This is a great discussion in here! I've enjoyed reading all the posts and beyond what everyone shared I can't think of a thing to add to make it better. Personally I care more about my personal style past 50 more than I ever have. Because I enjoy it more I suppose. But I also don't want to be a slave to what the media says I should wear. So, it's a process discovering it for myself.

  8. Oooh Pam I love this topic!!! Personally I think the word fashion is a loaded word…conjuring up too many 'not good enoughs' to count. Not thin enough,not young enough, not rich enough, not ahead enough. Having spent my youth battling these personal demons…in middle age I have given myself a pass form even playing. Rather, I avoid the entire fashion speculation and instead prefer the word s.t.y.l.e..

    Style is devoid of the baggage and expectation of 'fashion'. It is more democratic…style welcomes everyone to the party…because realize it or not…we all have a personal style. By the sheer commonality of putting on clothing… choice is involved…style is involved.. It is through these choices we can define our personal 'style'…make our creative mark.

    I say let the young have the word 'fashion'. Fashion to me is many time synonymous with follower…while style is a more personal journey. I would cringe if anyone ever considered me a 'fashion blogger'…. when it is really the search and appreciation of personal style that gets my heart racing.

    Pam thank you for hosting such a delightful discussion today! You my dear are a pivotal force in our growing community!

    1. Very well said. To my way of thinking, fashion is foisted upon us by merchandisers, but we develop our own style. You may follow fashion, but that doesn't mean you are stylish. I'll take personal style any day.

  9. Pam, although I would not be considered "older" I think you have mentioned an interesting topic and had to comment! There are so many that come from the field of thought that fashion is staying abreast on the latest trends, being early adopters of "it" items, and spending major money to do so.

    Fashion is not imitating what is presented to you by the media. What is noteworthy to me is when people are confident enough to wear what they feel and are able to express themselves with the clothing they wear. It is an art to combine old things with new, pair expensive items with bargain buys and seamlessly piece together outfits you thought up in the wee hours of the morning. Limitless money can't buy style sense nor is it synonymous with true fashion.

    Thanks for opening up an interesting forum and best to you!

    xoxo, Ashley Behnke

  10. Jean and Beth took the words out of my mouth. In fact, they said it better than I could.

    I love your look today… black and cream really work for you!

  11. I am glad mature woman are sharing their style online. I hardly ever see anyone I can take tips from but still I enjoy seeing them. I think a style blog consists of your lifestyle more than just what you wore that day. Style to me is how interesting is your life? It is the life you live in your outfits that interest me.

    I thought I was going to have a fashion blog because I love to create outfits each day when I go to work. What I discovered is I have little time to photograph myself and when I do my outfits are rarely editorial worthy. I just look like someone who dressed for the day and so what? The only reason I post photos is to allow the person to get to know me through a few photos. Once in awhile I check out Visible Monday and think "WHHHHAAAT?" Then remember these are not professional photo shoots they are sharing outfits and that is GREAT!!! It has been said unless you are a celebrity no one cares about your personal life. I totally disagree. I love to hear about your personal lifestyle and then love to see what you are wearing. Thank you Pam for encouraging us all to share who we are!!!

  12. Very nice black and cream pieces and at great prices too.
    I love what Angele Style said. We are encouraged to share who we are. I do not wear jaw dropping outfits. It's my real life. It's who I am on a daily basis. This is ME and how I live, how I am experimenting with style and fashion…what I find comfort or joy in wearing…in all my hits and misses.

  13. For me, I think, creativity is the key. If you can take a garment and wear it in a way that no one has previously thought of…that is creating fashion. Being a leader rather than a follower.

  14. If fashion blogging is catwalk then you're not one.
    If fashion blogging is current High St copies of catwalk trends then maybe you're not one but I know you're aware of trends even if you don't slavishly follow them.

    But to me you're a fashion blogger because you are thoughtful and discriminating about clothing.

    In short, you ARE a fashion blogger.

  15. Agree with all these ladie! Just wanted to pop in and say your "healthier lifestyle" is starting to show. YOu look great! Keep it up!

  16. Fashion blogging is and should be a big tent.

    If you run towards lifestyle/thrifting you probably aren't going to attract the same advertisers as someone who is more of a "look what I just bought at…." It doesn't matter to me as a reader because the advertisers aren't a big part of my experience, but it might matter to you as a businesswoman.

  17. Pam, you look wonderful! Love you in black & cream.
    I agree with all the ladies. Fashion means so many things…I prefer "Personal Style" over Fashion. You are so much more than a Fashion/Style Blogger. You uplift your readers, and that, my friend, is very special!

    Have a wonderful week!

  18. Hi Pam, just blow all that negativity off. Style blogger, fashion blogger, blah blah blah I say to titles, or letting somebody else (New York, LA, the media, IFB, whoever) define what fashion or style mean to me, or to letting them define how I am supposed to present myself as a "fashion blogger." I have to say, the fabulosity and the definitions are getting to me. Don't let all that negativity bring you down. You HAVE to be here, we need your voice at the table! I have to tell you I hate blogs that are too slick and professional looking. I absolutely hate them and I've stopped reading them. If I want something editorial (and paid for by sponsors) I will turn my attention to the wonderful magazines put out by Anna Wintour, Glenda Bailey, et al (and I often do, I love magazines). However, I love YOU because you are YOU and what you share with us is so personal. No damn magazine or hipster blog can replace it! XO, Jill

  19. AWESOME post, Pam. Somewhere I read, and i wish I could remember who to attribute this to because it's a great quote, this:

    Fashion is what's on the racks available to the masses. Style is what you do with fashion to make it your own individual look.

    I'm going to call myself "This is what I wear so I won't get arrested for being nekkid" blogger!!

    LOVE the black and cream!!

  20. Pam, you always look so fabulous. You are a fashion blogger and so much more! You inspire us to think, act, and be better people.
    Black and cream is one of my favorite combos. It is not as stark as black and white. Your outfit is really pretty.
    I know what you mean about having doubts. When I see some blogs that feature high end fashion I wonder how my comparatively inexpensive wardrobe can compare. It can't possibly, but then again that is not why I started my blog anyway.

  21. love your blog….you are so real….most of us are on a budget and you give great ideas and tips….I hate those fake people in magazines…went to Goodwill this weekend, scored a great Evan Picone jacket for 4.99…..would not have thought of GW until I started reading your blogs….thank you.

  22. the age old fashion blogging question
    honestly some of the bigger fashion blogs just don't even float my boat
    i think it is all in what you have to offer to those out there
    you have quite a following, they aren't following just because are they???
    fashion is different to everyone
    i have been on some popular blogs and thought…i wouldn't be caught dead wearing that and vice versa
    you are look fab in your cream and black

  23. Where have you been reading this narrow view of the term fashion blogger? I haven't seen seen the discussions. Regardless, try to ignore them.
    Theyre splitting hairs and being negative.
    lI ike to call myself a "personal style blogger" because i blog about the clothes I wear. Sometimes I delve into fashion, but mostly it's just me and my stuff. When I think of fashion I think of the gorgeous works of art that come off the runway. This influences the fashion industry and the companies that create the clothes we all go on to wear in our daily lives. Fashion happens in magazines but it also happens on the streets. What people wear is a reflection of fashion. Recently personal style and street style blogs have turned the tables on the industry and started influencing fashion on their own, much to the chagrin of the fashion magazines.

  24. I think it is always a mistake when we let others define what we do. The original blog you are referring to was wrong on so many counts. We can see professional photographs any day in a magazine, but not what translates to what real women wear in real life. I just got my copy of Vogue, which is lots of fun, but there is nothing there I could actually wear (or afford). I love to read about women who shop their closets and the sale rack and put together wonderful outfits that I could think about replicating. Maybe it's style and not fashion, but who cares?

  25. I just read on another blog yesterday about this same topic. Apparently there was a blogger conference and someone made a comment about amateur wanna be fashion bloggers ruining it (or something along those lines). I personally like seeing everyday normal average women! We are all trying to find our own styles, gain inspiration from others, and meet some really awesome women from all over. Fashion is in the eye of the beholder. I always say, dress how you want and dress for you. Confidence is always your best accessory. If you have confidence, you will always be fashionable! Heather

  26. Pam, I love how you have subtly and graciously broached the subject of all the, shall we say, controversy over the past few weeks. Personally, I consider myself to be a personal style blogger. What walks down the runway is fashion, how I interpret and display it to the world is my personal style. I believe the latter is what takes more creativity and conviction on the part of the wearer. And you, Lovely Pam, are most certainly brimming with style!!! ~Sarah

  27. I think we are style bloggers since we don't follow the trends, but instead, wear those garments that make us feel good and look good on us. Seriously, could we EVER be like the first fashion bloggers? I could never wear a t-shirt and high heels and call it an outfit so I could never be a fashion blogger. I haven't worn a mini skirt in 20 years and would never put one on now. NO. I will never be a fashion blogger and don't care to be. But I do have a style, as all women do, so I consider myself a "style blogger"; a blogger who styles HIGHER. I am defining my style more as time goes on and sharing it and it's one of the greatest and happiest things I have done in six years. You look lovely today Pam. xo

    1. fashionista
    A person devoted to fashion clothing, particularily unique or high fashion.
    A person not to be called a fashionista would be someone who obsessivly follows trends. REAL fashionistas do not believe in trends.

  28. Hahahaha yes really!! I call myself as fashion blogger no matter what others say ^_^ Because fashion for me is being comfortable and confident in what I wear. Somehow I follow color trend of the season or a style but of course I have to wear what is nice and great on me.
    Black and white are classic. I was in SA trying to find a nice black pants/trousers because they are an item that any woman should have in there closet. ^_^ And like what you did you tweak a little bit on your outfit instead of white capris it's cream and you look fabulous. For me that is fashion! You own it and you look great on it. By the way Pam, I like your bracelet ^_^


  29. Loving the comments and insights. I don't have much to add to this rich conversation. I think sometimes it's fun to be aware of trends, but I don't follow them. I think style has to do with self expression and creativity.

    You are fabulous in your black and off-white. With lots of style.

  30. You share your joy for style and fashion each day on this blog. That's what fashion blogging is all about. It's a form of creativity. You can adopt little bits of the current 'fashion' or feature a lot of the trends, it doesn't matter. In the end it's all about creativity and having fun. You are having that in spades so you are a true style / fashion / lifestyle blogger, whatever you like to call yourself!

  31. Pam,

    You are a fashion blogger. You blog for real women. Most women don't have the luxury of a big budget, traveling the world, or access to big ticket designer items. You, my friend, keep it real for the likes of many.

    I have always enjoyed fashion but I never pick up a magazine unless I'm bored at a doctor's office. I purchase items of trends I like but I'll be damned if I let some editor of a fashion magazine dictate what I should be wearing. I buy what I love, what I feel pretty in and I dress for me and me alone.

    I have heard that some fashion bloggers make six figures and have agents. Really? Come on…that is when it becomes less about what they love and more about the $.

    Keep up with what you do because you are wonderful at it.

    Deb xo

  32. Why do we need to care about how other people define things? If there's something you feel like writing about, write about it. If you want to make a huge business of it, then you have to worry about others' perceptions. If you're doing it for yourself, then just do you.

  33. Oh please. There are no rules! That's what's so great about this space. Frankly, I'm much less interested in the tiny twenty-something bloggers bc we get plenty of that in the media and fashion mags. I love hosting MondayMingle and seeing what REAL women wear who aren't spending all day styling their outfits and doing there hair and makeup. Just my 2 cents 🙂

    Love the cream and black palette.

  34. Fashion is mainstream and style is personality – that's my definition! Nothing can be fashionable or a trend without a (large) number of followers. As someone already pointed out, we're not followers. However, I think we can call ourselves whatever we like – we make our own rules in Blogland!

    The black and cream outfit really suits you, and the ballet flats are super cute!

  35. I know it is past Monday but just wanted to add… Your fashion blog and all that I follow, are real. Real women, real wearable clothes and (perhaps the biggest difference) real affordable prices. Most of "fashion" is directed to the really big bucks items. Those are not real for most of us. I appreciate, appreciate your blog and others like you. Thank you. Incidentally, how did you land such a fun job of professional Goodwill shopper?

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