Hi there. I have started to write for Ask In Your Face.com. The site covers a bunch of different topics and is comprised of dietitians, personal trainers, psychologists and even animal rights experts. There’s a lot of info here (!) but it’s well organized and gets into the things people really want to know about.
I was recently asked a question on Midwest women and fashion. Here is my response. (aka: the article)
Why is it that women fear exploring and expressing their true fashion desires? Are midwest women destined for mundane fashion, disinterested or simply out of the fashion loop? How can we help and inspire women to find their inner fashion diva and overcome their fear to express her? This is no easy task living in Michigan.
Women are many times afraid to express themselves out of fear of what others might say (good or bad) or because they don’t know where to start; they’re intimidated.
Television and print are powerful mediums. They provide us with ideas in creating our own style, yet many times, hype up people and places so much that it all seems distant- as if those fashions are reserved for celebrities only and aren’t obtainable for the rest of the population. (Which is simply not true!)
While I can’t speak for the entire Midwest region (!), I can say that if it’s something you love, you tune into what’s going on and you won’t be out of the fashion loop. This question reminds me of what Candace Bushnell once said while on her book tour for Sex And The City, “A Carrie exists everywhere, not just in New York City.”
The truth is, we in the mitten need to seek out style; fashion isn’t thrown in front of our faces nor are we in an area that welcomes experimentation. We don’t have a plethora of shops popping up, access to designer sample sales or a huge amount of exposure to creative peoples. Think in comparison to, if you lived in a city in which you walked to work everyday. You would be exposed to many people, those of whom you could draw ideas from. This type of environment is more conducive to trying new things.
The Midwest = mundane fashion mindset is something I encountered when I first moved to Los Angeles. The general school of thought was that I was from a small town and lived on farm. “Isn’t that how everyone in Michigan lives? How did you get this sense of style?” I must be some type of prodigy! 🙂
The reason Midwest cities get a bad rap for being out-of-touch is because fashion isn’t a major industry. There’s a lot of talent here and I see the potential for making its mark on the map, but it isn’t a focal point…yet (corn & cars are).
How do you overcome this fear or try something you’re not sure you can pull off? Do it. See what happens. If you don’t feel comfortable walking out the door, something needs to change. I do hate to sound cliche and reference SITC again, but does anyone remember SJP before the show? Eek! She didn’t know what she was doing. Now, she’s looked at as one of the most stylish celebrities. Why? Because she was given an outlet-an atmosphere where she could totally experiment and even easier, have a stylist dress her up and give her access to all kinds of goodies!
So my advice is to try; to experiment; to not give a damn if people question you. And you’ll get there. Look to international and national magazines, blogs and online sites. If you’re ready to start, you can call me and I’ll get you looking how you want and into what makes you feel like YOU–regardless of what the latest US Weekly says you should wear. :))