Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Dealing With People Online and an Update on my Style ID Discoveries

Oh people.  They are wonderful and they are awful.  I spend a lot of time online when I am exhausted.  I have to keep my brain busy but sometimes I can't cope with reading books.  I end up exploring various forums because I am so interested in systems and in what people think but this also means I encounter a lot of opinionated people ready to tell everyone they are wrong.  I can even be that person sometimes though I try to be careful.  The most problematic thing about the internet is probably the fact that we don't have tone of voice, facial expression or body language to help us understand each other and those are so important.  Sometimes I am very wordy but at other times I am extremely brief.  Brief words can come across as angry or rejecting when they are not intended to.  Word choices matter and I am usually careful to express my opinions in a way that implies it is only an opinion and I know that.  Many people don't do that.

I have been spending some time exploring a personal style system with an accompanying blog and comments section that is very active.  It's interesting and fun but currently getting a bit tense as people are chiming in to say they think so and so has mistyped herself and couldn't possibly be a this or that and they see so and so as X not Y.  Feelings are getting hurt, backs are up.  I have experienced it myself though I put myself in a position to experience it.  I shared a photo.  And yes, one person has already chimed in to say she does not think I actually am a Romantic Ethereal Ingenue. 

You see, this category seems to be contentious.  Others are doubting it, thinking it's rare and that people are mistyping themselves.  Good Grief!  As if that matters!

 If you put on an outfit I am sure you can find  five people on the street who think you  look great and five who don't.  So what?

It seems the contention around the style ID Romantic Ethereal Ingenue is based on the fact that it is purely feminine.  It seems women are having a who is most feminine competition when that is not the spirit of the style ID calculator or that website at all.  All ways of being a woman are attractive and feminine.   So, women who are claiming a status as uber feminine are doubted, questioned, told by a stranger, "I don't see that in you" I see some of X or Y. 

Why did I put my photo on there and open myself up to that?  I don't know for sure.  I have a tendency to try things just to see what will happen.  It doesn't matter what anyone else thinks though.  I know what I saw when I put my face next to photos of various styles of clothing and I know how I will use that information going forward. 

This is all subjective.  There is no blood test for your personal colour or your personal style.  I can't leave a comment this long on that forum so yes, I am venting a little on my own blog, but also putting this here in case anyone who reads that forum ends up here.  It could happen.  I will continue to explore what I think works for me in personal style and I will continue to write about it here.  I can't seem to not do that!

It does not matter what my style ID is and what anyone calls it or if I have identified it correctly so much as it is helpful to learn things, understand and apply what is learned.  My understanding about what suits me is that it is likely influenced by some style lines that could be called Ethereal, and maybe Ingenue.  It is also influenced by some Classic and Natural  but in what proportions?  That's just for me to experiment and find out.  I have done lots of experimenting.  I know what works and and what doesn't, what is okay or mediocre and what is fantastic.  It's trying to put it together into something cohesive and understandable that is my focus now and it's all about fun.  I remain someone who has a small wardrobe and not a lot of money to spend, as well as someone who has some significant fit challenges to cope with.

Rant over.  Happy Hump Day!

 An Update on my Discoveries:

I rather like playing with the style ID calculator tool.  I have tried it out in various ways, using different photos and trying out the two different suggested scoring systems.  One challenge when you do it repeatedly is that you eventually know exactly which ID each style board represents and it's probably better not to know.  Another challenge is that as you go along you choose a board that looks good next to your face but later could encounter things that look better than you expected something could.  Do you go back and change previous answers or leave them?   Different choices can lead to slightly different results in that way.

It's not rocket science.  It's a tool to help you figure some things out, see things you've maybe not seen before.  It gets you into a more accurate space than you may have been if you were confused about what suits you since we often have troubles seeing ourselves accurately.

Changing my technique for using the calculator usually didn't give me results of significant difference, a few percentage points here or there might change.  Though I did  find that the Romantic aspect of the Romantic, Ethereal Ingenue result didn't seem quite so appealing to me and I thought it must be a very small portion.  The fewer options I chose, when narrowing it down to just the ten best boards, actually eliminated the Romantic and gave me Natural instead which I confess I like more.

In the end though it won't change much for me.  It changes little about what I've learned or about how I will dress myself going forward.  For me, labels and categories are for making something clear, for gathering information that is useful.  Then I adapt it to make it work for me in a way I am comfortable with.

Boho redux was my response to many things that are boho style and also many recommendations from David Kibbe for Natural types being heavy and overwhelming looking on me.  What Ethereal and Ingenue might contribute to a Natural makes sense to me in terms of what I learned when I played around with boho and coming up with boho redux.

I think Ingenue style in some forms can be similar looking to Classic and I think that is why other people seem to want to debate whether I am Classic or not.  Classic is almost good, sometimes good but can look just a little plain and harsh.  Again, I've stated somewhere at some time, that a blend of Kibbe Soft Classic and Soft Natural seemed right for me but in Kibbe's system you don't do blends like that.  You are one of those categories or another and given my height he quite likely wouldn't put me in either one anyhow.

Putting other people on the internet with opinions aside, the great thing about playing with a style ID calculator is that you can discover things for yourself and aren't stuck with an 'expert' telling you what you are.  Somewhere there is the happy medium between an expert's help to understand things and the objective truth of your body and facial lines.  The Style ID calculator is my preferred way of learning what looks good on me, and it's less expensive than actually buying all of those clothes, plus less tiring than going to the store and trying them on.  


  1. I think I've told you this before. I tend to think of my native culture (former Soviet, to be precise, because that's where we grew up - people of my generation, my parents and older; and not necessarily only in Russia) as being extra opinionated and open with everyone they meet regarding to what they think of them. You don't have to even ask - they are so ready to tell you "all the truth about you"... Before I started In The Writer's Closet, I posted one outfit in an online community. I got mostly positive comments, some advice, and some sort of positive, but poisoned comments - you know what I mean? Like, "You are such a charming woman, you just need to loose 20 kg"... or "Such a pretty woman, but you need to do something with your hair." It wasn't even about my outfit - it was personally about me! And those were not the worst and even almost nice comments! Some people on Youtube leave surprisingly angry and nasty comments, as if I personally did something to hurt them by simply uploading my little videos, intended mostly for my family and close friends...

    I think those are people who aren't satisfied with themselves, sometimes even unhappy, depressed and lonely - they literally can't find anything better to do than to pass their unhappiness onto someone next to them, or even to pick up a fight, and if no one is near, then there are always folks online. I absolutely don't have any interest in it, so I just delete nasty comments and move on. They are both sad and funny at the same time...

    Maybe I am especially sensitive to my culture, but here in the US, people do not strike me this way. It seems to me that they in general mind their own business and don't worry too much about what others do. 'Did you mislabel yourself? Good for you!' :) That's the general approach that I sense. 'It's your life - label yourself any way you like!' Maybe it's different online. But that's exactly why I love and value our international blogging community so much! In all the years of blogging, I received nothing but kind and encouraging words. Even when we disagree, we sort of agree to disagree, mostly silently. I don't sense any personal disapproval from my blogging friends. And it's exceptionally rare!

    1. I wondered if you might comment because I was looking forward to what you would have to say. I can be blunt sometimes, but I don't think I give unsolicited comments. Usually I take the approach that there is nothing to be gained by telling someone something negative about their outfit or their personal appearance. I comment on the positive. It's all subjective anyhow. If the person is happy with their new dress, who am I to say it doesn't look good?

      I find that while the internet is international I mostly encounter Americans. Americans seem to me to be like any other human being. There are lovely, kind, supportive ones and a few nasty ones and some in between. I have been in a few situations online where I am identifying with a group that is considered rare and this seems to get other people upset. They think it lessens what and who they are somehow. You are right in that this lack of confidence about themselves or dissatisfaction then shows up as nasty or unsupportive comments.
      You belong to a really great blogging community and I am so glad you get all of that wonderful support. I think women should support each other. I think some of these people would say they are being supportive, just trying to help other women get it right. As someone who can be obsessed with 'getting it right' I like to think I know when things are more subjective than that ( there is no blood test to determine your personal style ) or when someone just doesn't need me to impose my view.

      This website I have been visiting is generally really fantastic with lots of supportive people there. Just lately a few are showing up and spoiling the atmosphere a bit but I will not let them ruin anything for me. I also agree with you about it being sad and funny.

      Keep on being gorgeously stylish, my friend. I see doses of Romantic, Classic, Dramatic and Gamine in you, but I could be wrong and you are quite free to disagree. LOL xo

    2. I don't think I have a particular style, to be honest - I just like playing with different materials and trying on different styles. I took quite a long vacation from fashion, for about 10 years or so, but before that I always loved playing with styles. Some of them work, and others don't - I don't care about "looking good" or "looking bad", one way or another, it's simply fun playing! I think I used to be more conservative in my younger years - but even then I had lots of playfulness in me. I don't know why it interests me, but it does, and it brings me joy, and I think it's the only reason I need really. :)

      I agree with you, people are people everywhere, some things are universal! But there is a significant difference in outer cultures - culture of behavior so to speak. Russians/Soviet folks are much more straightforward compared to Americans who are by comparison extremely polite and a little distant, though friendly. Russians also are extremely creative and resourceful, but typically don't like to brag. I think the fact that I show my such imperfect outfits to the whole world is a bit of nonsense for most of my Russian friends. :) Russians open up much more easily, and they are more capable of personal closeness, I think, but with time - not very friendly at first sight, they are often very kind and softhearted, and ready to help as soon as they get to know you a little. Americans are much more closed, individualistic, very communicative, but keep themselves to themselves. But it is a generalization of course, so there is that. I do think that our characters show a little (or a lot) differently in our online presence though. I am mostly staying in a small cocoon of kind and friendly people, who are by the way from all over the world, and many are Europeans... but I definitely notice the difference in the way people communicate depending where they are from, and I definitely sense a difference in country/folk spirits, or souls... but that's the whole another topic. :)

      We people can be so funny with our opinions, we get so attach to them as if they were cut in stone. At the end, they are only individual opinions at a particular place and time, perceptions, almost as clouds that are passing by, and nothing else really... and we take them so seriously at times! Gosh! We start wars because of the difference of opinions! I like or dislike my own outfits or my piece of writing, depending on my mood, current preferences, state of mind, etc. So why even take opinions of others about ourselves into account? so that we can be more like them?

      I am happy for you that you found a good community to talk over all these themes that interest you! There is nothing like talking to someone who understands and loves sharing a common passion. And if possible, annoying commenters can be overlooked. Happy exploring!!!

    3. Well said, Natalia. It's interesting to hear you exploring the difference between Russians and Americans. The Canadian perspective is that Americans are how you describe Russians. LOL We do get attached to our opinions, don't we? I can get very frustrated by people but overall I find them fascinating to study. Human behaviour always has fascinated me. I only have short bursts of social behaviour so I doubt I will spend very long interacting with any online community. I'm not good at sustaining it. But it's fun in small doses. Most of the time I just silently lurk, though you are right, it's nice to chat with people who share an interest.

      Your style experiments are fun to watch and you are very talented at putting together outfits. I also think that you have perhaps discovered that your appearance can handle a lot of colour and accessories, in fact may even demand it. It always seems that the more you decorate yourself the more your face is showcased. Does that make sense? Anyhow you do a fantastic job if it.


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