May 07, 2013

For The Love of Fashion Props

I love trends, and although I may not always follow them, I love to see things go in and out of trend. More than my love for trends, I enjoy learning about the fashion subcultures that exist in different areas of the world. If you live with me, and no you don't, you will know that I spend a large fraction of my spare time in Cyberspace and I can't help but notice this one subculture that is growing rapidly, whether you dig it or not.

The one group I want to blabber about, and for the most part I find extremely peculiar, subscribes to this subculture. This is the group of 'fashionistas' who seek fashion props from the Cyber-community on a daily.

Now don't get me wrong, by virtue of being on a social platform such as Instagram I understand the good vibes we all seek and experience when someone hearts a picture of what we wore, what we bought, an insect we saw or even a veggie we we just baked, I get that. I mean, I do it all the time. However, without bashing this group down or passing any loose judgements, I would like to just shine a light on this subculture and maybe in turn understand it a bit more. Heck who knows, I might just find myself deeply involved in the daily rituals associated with it.

Well before I go any further, my definition of 'seeking fashion props' is the process of seeking social acknowledgement or recognition by putting on a 'supposedly' stylish outfit together, posing in front of a camera, in many cases with one leg behind the other, torso slanted to oneside and the head tilted at a 45 degree angle. The image is then filtered, at times placed alongside two others in a collage and posted to the community in Cyberville for some love.

Whilst taking my religious leisurely strolls across the tabs of the World Wide Web, usually at spots in Cyberville hashtagged with #style or #fashion I encounter this breed of fashionistas very frequently. At times I come across individuals in this group that inspire me stylistically and other times I can tell that they got the Fashion Prop Brief terribly wrong.

For some individuals, this is a great way of sharing fashion tips, celebrating something they bought and sharing knowledge of where to buy it. In some ways it is to develop a following in hopes of becoming an opinion leader/trendsetter. Some people get paid to do it, for brands to advertise their latest clothes. Other times for designers to showcase their work. Whilst those are some good reasons to seek fashion props, in some cases these fashion prop images are simply an epic fail, a tab to close immediately or simply a prompt to unfollow the user.

What can we learn from this subculture? Whether we love it or hate it, what can we say actually works and what are the downfalls one can experience?

Positives

  • These fashionistas get to work on their camera and photo editing skills.
  • Playing dress up or celebrating an outfit can be fun.
  • When well executed, you can make a career out of it. Think, Jessica Quirk who created What I Wore and gets a million views on her site monthly.
  • If you meet your 'like' or 'heart' targets for the day you can actually put your self esteem to bed with a smile. (LOL)
  • You can meet multitudes of people in Cyberspace that love your modelling skills and this could serve as your portfolio.
  • If you are an aspiring Stylist and people dig your looks, you may just gain recognition and a platform to start a successful career.

Negatives

  • There is a fine line between vanity and posting pics of yourself every hour of every day (this line can get blurry). One needs to provide content rather than a whole chuck of spam pics that would be better placed in a family photo album.
  • You might need to be a shopaholic to keep up with this hobby, unless you are sponsored by clothing brands or you conduct your photoshoots in changing rooms with the tags still on.
  • Your style may be badly off and if you don't take well to criticism your poor self esteem may need some TLC.
  • You may not get the recognition you are looking for - I'll put it this way, try not to rely on this tool for self esteem.

Hate them or love them, these fashionistas are flooding Cyberville with images of what they are wearing, how they are pouting and how good they are at collaging.

I would soooo love to strike a pose for some fashion props, just to make this post end with a bang, but sadly I am lying in bed with thick socks and the oversized winter nighty that my brother gave to me. It would defeat the purpose!






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