Monday, May 27, 2013

define this




Someone asked me recently if I was going to go back to posting daily outfit pix. I don’t think so, though I’m sure I’ll do one now and then. I guess the nature of this blog has changed a bit...as I have, certainly. Then came the question, are you going to change your blog name? I hadn’t really thought about that.  Does the name, Fashionably Later still fit?  

I’ve been getting back to basics on many fronts in my life so maybe I should try including this blog in that effort, too. Since one of the first rules of blogging is to find your niche, that means you need to define yourself. I decided to start there.  For inspiration I searched on the present name of this blog, Fashionably Later, and I got...well, my blog, but after that came a review in the Boston Globe of the Sex In The City movie from 2008 and some tumblr picture of a person wearing cut-off denim shorts. Not exactly helpful. So instead I tried Googling the phrase of origin, Fashionably Late.  Here is some of what came up from that:
 
-The refined art of being just late enough.
 
-When you show up late, so everyone will think you have a life.
 
-Getting noticed by arriving at that time, in other words standing out by being late.
 
-Arriving late to an event to give the impression that you are a busy, popular person.
 
I kinda like the first one. The second one made me laugh -- none of them really helped, though.  Maybe I should go back to the beginning. When I started Fashionably Later it was supposed to be a fun little wardrobe diary for a middle-aged mom, with a small slice of life tossed in now and then. I wanted to rebuild my confidence and prove that style was something any woman could create regardless of her size, vocation, budget or age. It wasn’t about making a major fashion statement...it wasn’t about fashion at all, not in the sense that word is typically used. For me this was about one woman’s "re-found" desire to look her best as a simple act of personal empowerment, and doing so a little later in life. I shared it for entertainment, and because I thought just maybe it would inspire someone else in a similar situation...you never know.
 
But then a funny thing happened on the way to the style blog – I got diagnosed with breast cancer. And what I had intended as a positive but fairly lighthearted endeavor quickly became something very different.
 
I wrote about my cancer journey, about my life, about things way beyond what I was wearing. And the people who once commented on outfit choices or accessories now were leaving me the most amazing comments that carried me through the worst time of my entire life. They gave me hope, they cried with me, they uplifted me and some even kept vigil when I wasn’t here. I “met” other women with cancer as well as a slew of talented and supportive writers...a diverse little gathering coalesced for me here. The outpouring from my tiny corner of the blogosphere was one of the most touching things that has ever happened to me. I’ll never forget it. Never.
 
A lot has changed since my cancer diagnosis four years ago. I’ve changed, my body has changed, my goals, even my tastes have changed. In some ways perhaps for the better, but to be honest, in many ways I still mourn for the woman I once was. I miss her. Of course, everything always changes...you don’t need cancer to have that happen. That’s just life.
 
As I try to find my voice again and recreate myself I don’t completely know what is in store for this blog (let alone anything else). I don’t see it returning exclusively to style commentary or a wardrobe diary, but I’m not ready to say goodbye to all that completely either. There are so many other things I want to write about, too, things I've got on my mind.  Perhaps despite typical blogging advice I shouldn’t focus on finding my niche or defining this blog any more than I should try to strictly define myself. I don't need any more limitations at this point in my life.
 
I've decided for now not to worry about descriptions anymore.  This is who I am, this is what I like and here’s what I feel like writing about. It might not always be cohesive, but I'm still doing it with my own sense of style...and definitely a little later than I had originally planned. Based on that, the name Fashionably Later still fits pretty well, I think -- so I guess in the end some things haven’t changed that much after all ;)
 


13 comments:

Arianna said...

I'm very new to your blog, but you seem like a wonderful person and I admire you so much :) I think blogging (unless you're doing it for money) should be fun, something you really enjoy doing, and the rules don't matter.

Jean (notsupermum) said...

I think your blog name still fits, and is a nice twist on 'fashionably late' too. Anyway, who cares about names when you're so fabulous? x

p.s. Oooh, fabulously later :)

Kayleigh said...

Ariana -- that is so sweet of you, thank you very much -- and I admire you right back, I kept saying to my husband, can I be this girl when I grow up? I'm sure you've heard it before, but you are wise beyond your years :)

Jean -- Oooh, I like fabulous, later or otherwise, lol...thanx. I think you're right tho, the more I've pondered it the more the name still seems to fit, with, as you said, a twist. I like twists. I guess that makes me twisted...and fabulous :D

The Small Fabric Of My Life said...

I think it is a great name.

Rita@thissortaoldlife said...

This is my first time here--and wow, what an entry. I love the original premise, being someone who is often late and struggles with being fashionable, especially at my current (middle) stage of life. But I love even more what it seems your blog is becoming, an account of continuing to define who you are past the stage when most think the defining is done.

Something about this post reminds me of another site, LaterBloomer (Debra Eve). She highlights stories of those who bloomed later in life. So glad to have found you and your blog.

Kayleigh said...

Thanks Jane -- and I've always loved your blog name too, it seems to fit perfectly and is very memorable :)

Rita -- thank you very much! And I really like the way you described my blog, lol, I hadn't thought of it that way but LOVE it. I am a late bloomer in many ways, so I can't wait to check out that site. Oh, but you've been here before, I remember it because I was thrilled you stopped by, I admire your blog so much (in fact you left me a lovely comment on my "how many dishes do we need" post, I think)

I'm flattered either way, and hope you come back again -- I am a longtime fan :)

Real College Student of Atlanta said...

thank you so much for sharing!!

Kayleigh said...

Real College Student of Atlanta -- you are very welcome...and thank you for commenting :)

Nancy's Point said...

Hi Kayleigh,
It's so funny how I arrived here today and read this post. I posted about blogging today too. Great minds, right? But guess I was late, though, and perhaps not fashionably! ha.
Anyway, I say go ahead and write about whatever you'd like. Blogs are a reflection of who we are. We evolve, so our blogs do as well. Keep on writing. I'll keep on reading!

Kayleigh said...

Nancy -- well I think you are VERY fashionable, late or otherwise :) I'm so glad you do read my blog...and I love to read yours, always. You are right, blogs are a reflection of who we are...that's what I usually like about my favorites (like yours), the voice of the writer seems to shine thru no matter the topic. I guess it's hard to hear your own sometimes. Thanks for the lovely comment :)

Lynn said...

I love you, Kayleigh!

Kayleigh said...

Right back at ya, Lynn :)

Anusha said...

One thing I love so much about your blog is that it's REAL. There's only so many photos of skinny girls twirling around in $$$$ clothes while writing about their fabulous lives in Manhattan (mainly because they live rent-free with their families) or whatever that I can stomach (right now I can put up with zero). It's wonderful to see well put together outfits, especially if they were genuine bargains, or secondhand, and worn by normal women etc., but I like blogs that are about the good and the bad aspects of real life. I'm tired of girl-women and their Instagram fantasy lives. I think reality is much more inspirational ... and beautiful!