I had planned on doing an all-time best of post –-my top 10 looks from our three years of blogging. See, I wanted to point back to the time I wore A2’s jeans and called them “girlfriend” jeans –both because it was one of the first times I took (what felt like) a real risk with my outfit and because I still think I’m pretty clever for my alternative to “boyfriend jeans.”
I wanted to remind you of my J-Crew inspired flower belt and my green dress worn with a tank over it – still two of my all time favorite outfits. I wanted to show off the many ways I wore my orange pencil skirt and maybe review my favorite analogous color combinations. I wanted to look back at my foray into pattern mixing and my eventual full embrace of it.
I wanted to show you first days of school and coffee shop favorites. But, there was just too much! I got overwhelmed and like E. and S., I decided I better stick to this last year of blogging instead (but see how I cheated there just a little bit?). For more reminiscing, you can see my top ten from year one and year two.
So, without further ado my top ten form year three:
I started the year with long hair and bright colors in a drab winter. While I will always be a neutrals girl (especially mixed neutrals), I love looking back and seeing how many bright colors have worked their way into my daily wardrobe. My timid love of color is thanks to our Fashion 101s on the color wheel and to the inspiration from my far more colorful co-bloggers, particularly the color master, E.
I’ve noticed that many of my favorite looks from this year are just new takes on much loved outfits from years past – funny how it looks so different with the short hair:
Earlier this year, I took a month off from blogging and returned with a new haircut. It was so wonderful to reveal this physical change to all of you – your compliments and encouragement made me feel like cutting my hair was the best thing I’ve ever done. While blogging can be hard on the self-esteem, it can also provide an incredible boost – so often your comments have made me feel beautiful and have empowered me to take style risks like cutting my hair and wearing 4-inch platform wedges despite the fact that they make me 6 feet tall.
Once again this year I renewed my love of stripes (particularly the blue and white stripes) and so it’s not surprising to me that half of my top ten outfits prominently feature stripes. I like that each of my blue and white striped outfits is fairly different. In one I bore my long pasty white legs in short shorts. In another I emphasized my broad shoulders and big hips in a classic silhouette. In the last, I wore “a look” I have long appreciated on other people but believed could never look good on me. I think I did take more risks (and more successful risks, at that) this year while remaining true to what makes me feel comfortable – I’m willing to put something on that emphasizes a not-so-conventionally beautiful aspect f my body, or tryout a silhouette that traditional fashion advice would tell me to steer clear of, but I’m also willing to keep wearing the things that are not on trend but make me feel like me.
These last two picks are less about the outfits and more about the things in my life they represent and the discussion the posts generated:
I wore this black jersey dress and knotted cardigan the first time I bike-commuted to school. Part of taking my break from bloging earlier this year and part of why it’s important for me to leave academichic now is that I’ve made a commitment to take care of myself, and to find balance in my life before I turn 30 (just a couple months away). I’m making more time for things that make me happy while simultaneously starting a big push to the finish line of my degree. Among the many things I have taken more time for is exercise and I started biking.
The purple and black outfit I wore to receive an award for my service and leadership in the LGBT community. In this post I also wrote about issues of passing and the symbolism of my wedding band. The posts in which I discussed my queer identity have been some of the most powerful for me. I was a bit nervous (sadly!) to post about my wedding, but while I did get a few negative reactions, I mostly received an outpouring of love and support. Similarly, my “coming-out” post will remain one of my favorites, because it stands as a reminder that what I do speaks volumes to others.
So, thanks you! Thank you for all of your thoughtful comments – especially the ones that helped me to love all of my body, the ones that challenged my thinking, and the ones that supported my work with LGBT students.
Thank you for letting me share with you the minutia of my daily life as well as the great milestones.
In the time since we started blogging, I have gotten married, taken and defended my comprehensive exams, written and defended my dissertation proposal, submitted the first chapter of my dissertation, learned to garden, taken up biking and sewing, run two marathons, built a patio, and made many incredible friends. I’m now just a year away from finishing my degree and hopefully starting a new job, I’m making plans to start a family, and am about to turn 30. I promise to check in occasionally as I hit some of these new milestones – defend my dissertation, graduate, get a job, etc.
Like my co-bloggers have already expressed, I will miss the creative and critical outlet this blog has provided and I will miss the community of smart fashionable women it has introduced me to.
More than anything I will miss my collaboration with you, E. S. and L. I will miss “seeing” your beautiful faces on a regular basis. Thank you for sharing in such an incredible journey, building this site from a half-cocked idea discussed over coffee years ago into something I will long be proud of.