Pretty grand title, huh? Well, it’s true; I’m a different person than I was when I started this blog, ten years ago. I’ve changed in lots of the little ways you’d expect: I’m more conscious of trends, I visit thrift stores more often, I dress more creatively and I shop more than before WIW2D. The biggest change I’ve seen, though, has been in my attitude towards others’ dress. I’m much more accepting of other people’s style choices than I used to be.

I used to delight in the criticism of other people’s clothing. My favorite part of What Not to Wear was the snarky comments Stacy and Clinton made about the “before” wardrobe. In the checkout line, I’d flip directly to the back of Glamour magazine and the infamous “black bar” page. Next, I’d grab a tabloid off the rack and see what witty things the rag had to say about badly dressed celebrities. Throughout the day, I’d note what other people were wearing and I’d think: too tight, too short, too loud, too tacky, too sloppy, too wild. I constantly judged what others were wearing and usually found them lacking.

There’s nothing like living in a glass house to teach one not to throw rocks.

The nasty comments started in the forums. I’d notice traffic coming to my blog from a message board and check out the thread. For every nice comment (if there were any!), I’d find ten hurtful remarks. Then, “anonymous” started leaving cruel comments directly on my blog. I was cut to the quick. Each unkind remark left me with a hollow feeling in my chest, a hitch in my throat, and a buzzing in my head. I’m not confrontational, so I did not engage the commenters, but I was busily justifying myself in my head and venting to my friends. I felt victimized and misunderstood. I contemplated giving up the blog on more than one occasion.

One day, it all just clicked and I realized that every time I judged others harshly, I was behaving exactly like the trolls. Even if my thoughts were left unshared, I was ashamed to be associated with them. I changed my attitude.

Instead of curling my lip in disgust at a woman’s outfit, I’d imagine what the offender was thinking when she got dressed. Was she in a hurry to get her child off to school? Does she dress to identify herself with a particular subculture? Is she expressing her mood with her dress? I also found things to admire in outfits that I would have previously snubbed. What a great pair of shoes! Look how she picked up that particular shade of green in multiple places. And, the number one attitude-changer of all, I admire her confidence!

Confidence is just what I gained from this exercise. As I accepted others around me and their fashion choices, I became bolder with my own. The new confidence inspired me to wear what I want, without worrying about whether it “went” or was too dressy or impractical. I adopted a more carefree attitude about my appearance. Why not take a risk today? I can play it safe tomorrow. Fuck the detractors. They only WISH they had the courage to try this.

There are always going to be nasty people in the world and they are probably always going to say nasty things, but I feel better in knowing that there is one less. I admit, the world would be a boring place if we were all winners and no one was better than anyone else (a la Harrison Bergeron), but maybe we could all cut each other some slack when it comes to style. There are so many ways we can express ourselves through our clothing. I’d like nothing better than to watch the parade go by and appreciate your choices.

This post is an updated version of How This Blog Has Changed My Life, originally published 3/24/2010 at whatiwore2day.blogspot.com. I still need to remind myself, even more than six years later, to be kind, empathetic, and understanding.

November 26, 2016
November 28, 2016

Kasmira Kit

12 Comments

  1. wardrobeoxygen

    November 29, 2016

    I love this, Kasmira and can relate to it so much. I think of the critical voice I had early on in blogging, the snarking I did of other’s fashion and realize how blogging has opened my eyes and my heart and I could never think or write such things now. And people stereotype bloggers as superficial! 😉 Great revisit, and great reminder!

    • Kasmira Kit

      November 30, 2016

      LOL. Yes, I was so afraid people would think I was superficial when I started the blog. Bloggers are the deep thinkers!

  2. Stephanie Ganger

    November 29, 2016

    I started reading fashion blogs about the same time you started yours. You are one of 2 I still read daily. The other being Already Pretty by Sally McGraw. I honestly had a similar breakthrough. I wear what I want because I am comfortable and happy with my clothes. I have learned how not to compromise on fit and color. I usually admire many things about what others wear and have learned to be envious of other’s confidence to pull off an outfit that would leave me feeling uncomfortable in.

    • Kasmira Kit

      November 30, 2016

      I was in San Francisco on Monday and had a wonderful time admiring the fashion in the city! It’s one thing to see it online, but another to see it in person. I feel doubly awed by others’ confidence.

  3. Lorena

    November 29, 2016

    Like you I have also changed thanks to blogging – although I am more accepting of others styles I always ALWAYS and not intentionally think they could have done better. I do this with myself too. Unfortunately in my case its a bad family learned habit that I a trying to get rid of.
    A great read. Fuck the detractors.. you should make a tee.

    • Kasmira Kit

      November 29, 2016

      Great idea for the WhatIWore2Day shop!

  4. Sheila (of Ephemera)

    November 29, 2016

    I remember this from when you posted it back in 2010. 🙂 Agreed, I’ve also changed over the past several years that I’ve been blogging – I no longer snark (even in my head), but try to look for the brave, the daring and the “I don’t give a flying fuck what you think.” I admire and support those who try to push the envelope. This is a good reminder to be a little kinder when it comes to how people dress.

    • Kasmira Kit

      November 30, 2016

      So glad you are with me on this! (Not that I ever thought you wouldn’t be.)

  5. Sandi

    November 29, 2016

    The exact reason I don’t blog! I enjoy yours and many others but know I could not take the meanies of the world! I am just grateful I can finally stand up for myself and not let negative people in my “space” Who knows!? Maybe someday! 😉 Until then, keep writing and inspiring!!
    sp

    • Kasmira Kit

      November 30, 2016

      When I started, I didn’t tell anyone about my blog, for fear of being seen as shallow or superficial or just plan weird. I wouldn’t judge you for starting a “secret” blog!

  6. ~J

    December 6, 2016

    Love this post and your attitude! Working on not judging, but it’s still sometimes hard not to think “ooh, that’s too short, or too tight, etc”. So I remind myself that everyone is free to wear what they like, and there’s no reason (or authority!) for me to pass judgement. So I rephrase it in my brain to “that’s shorter than I would be comfortable with but good for her to have the confidence to wear it.”

    I still enjoy some of those what not to wear sort of things, but only the ones where the person was hiding behind something or had total lack of confidence and they are able to boost their confidence and help them find clothes that bring out their best features.

    • Kasmira Kit

      December 6, 2016

      I just caught myself being judgmental this morning when looking at an outfit pic on Flickr. It’s a hard habit to break!

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