A boring Sunday about a month ago, and I was reading a few of my favourite fashion blogs, namely BlackCoffeeCrumbs, Discotheque Confusion and Childhood Flames. It was then that I came across a sweet, modest blog called Little Voguette. After reading the first few posts, I became intrigued as to the author, 14-year-old Mariam Aliyu. Oddly, I was surprised that such writing could be achieved by someone as young as Aliyu. However, Tavi Gevinson is of the same age, and has been referred to as the ‘frontline of fashion’ being a regular guest at fashion shows and a muse for many designers (Rodarte’s Target), all down to her majorly successful blog, Style Rookie. I looked over the author’s of my other favourite blogs and saw that they too were all below the age of 20. Yet, their writing was so good. This made me want to explore the dramatic rise in the number of young fashion bloggers today.
To figure out this sudden rise in young people writing about fashion, I asked for help from some young bloggers who write inspirational, passionate fashion and style blogs – Eternal Masquerade, Slang, Cosmic Flair and Little Voguette.
Stephanie Green started her blog, Eternal Masquerade, just two months ago at 17 years old. “I’ve always wanted to blog but I’ve never really pushed myself to start,” She explains “I feel like the recent influx of young bloggers influencing others to pursue blogging is only natural. With Tavi, one of the youngest bloggers out there, showing her strong writing talents and making unbelievable contacts in the fashion industry; one would assume that girls interested in fashion would aspire to have the same connections.”
17-year-old Jasmin Alexia’s blog Cosmic Flair launched in 2008 is very popular amongst young readers, as well as older ones. I asked her what she thought of the young blogger’s boost: “Blogging isn’t just a hobby, it’s a movement. It’s a way of voicing your opinion and expressing your talent or love for something. We are so lucky to be able to be a part of this movement because our generation started the fashion blogging! We basically made history through voicing our opinions.”
So there may be a substantial increase in younger bloggers, but are they better than older ones? I asked Ren Miller of Slang what teens bring to blogging that adults don’t: “Teenagers bring a fresher perspective on fashion as opposed to older bloggers. They tend to know “what’s up” more than older bloggers and post a lot more about personal style.”
My motivation to blog came simply from the desire to talk too much, and having no one who wanted to listen. I wondered what made other people want to blog. Mariam of Little Voguette told me: “I was inspired by Tavi Gevinson. I was reading an article about a thirteen year old girl, who has an eye for fashion and has been invited to runway shows, and she had made all that from a successful blog. I checked it out and thought, I could do this too.”
For others, like Jasmin Alexia, blogging is more a way of expressing her own personality, “I really wanted a place where I could write my thoughts without judgement. Before my blog, I would write notes on Facebook about designers and their achievements, but then realized nobody on Facebook is going to care, so maybe I should expand my taste in fashion to a blog of my own.”
Eventually I began to question the point in blogging. I mean, a few posts concerning your opinions are hardly going to change the world. Was there a personal motive? Did any of the bloggers want a future in fashion? “I believe I do yes,” Green explains “I’d love to work within the editorial world and take my writing one step further. Blogging has become such an amazing creative outlet for me to express my feelings about fashion even though I lack the skills to design and sew.” Alexia on the other hand is looking to advance in the creative side of fashion, “I am interested in going into apparel design. I’ve been looking at colleges and am very excited to start studying fashion full-time!”
So it’s clear that the rise in young people blogging is initially due to a want to express opinions and thoughts. But is there something to be gained from blogging? Take Tavi for example, she gets invited to fashion shows on a regular basis, has graced the cover of Pop Magazine, done features in Vogue, the New York Times, Teen Vogue etc. Are teenager’s blogging in the hope of achieving this?
“I could say that the sole reason for teenage fashion bloggers are just for them to share their point of view on clothing and such, but I do believe that the underlying reason is fame,” Slang’s author Ren Miller agrees, “They believe that if they start a blog, commit themselves to it and gain as many followers as possible, then maybe they too will be recognized amongst the hundreds of other teen fashion bloggers.” So is it wrong to want to blog for this reason? “No, there’s nothing wrong with this, for I too am part of that growing ratio of teen fashion bloggers wanting a shot at fame. After all, aren’t we all just hoping that one day front row tickets to the Alexander Wang show are practically given to us and maybe, just maybe, we’ll be featured in a well-known fashion magazine?”
(Many thanks to Stephanie Green (Eternal Masquerade), Jasmin Alexia (Cosmic Flair), Ren Miller (Slang) Mariam Aliyu (Little Voguette)!)