We interrupt Carbon Chic’s regular (read: sporadic) posting schedule to bring you a piece of my mind.

Bloggers around the world who have amassed any semi-decent amount of followers will probably know all about forums and the people within with their.. colourful comments on what you write and wear.

Criticism is something every blogger will run into at some point; It’s exhilarating to write critiques and fun to read them (if you’re not the person they’re writing about!), but I favor the kind of criticism that smacks me directly in the face, not one that takes digs at my back. I always encourage honest and open discussions on my blog, and hope that if people feel like something I’m saying rubs them the wrong way, they’ll tell me!

A few days ago I was travelling along a bike trail with my best friend Ellen. She was riding a Barbie scooter with glittery cat stickers on it and I was on my bright blue roller-blades. Totally 90’s, I know. Fortunately for us, passing traffic thought so as well, because we actually got jeered at. I didn’t quite make out what she said but AAAAAHHHHH something something scooter something rollerblades something 90’s, you fucks, AHAHAHAAHA, and we just stood there a bit dumbfounded that people exist like that, so deluded to think that yelling things as you pass by in your car to give your “victim” no chance to respond is in any way, shape, or form, an appropriate way for a human being to act.

Say that to my face, you limp noodle

This is kind of how I feel about forums that promote hatred and anger like that. Fortunately, nothing said on those forums about me was really terrible and, don’t worry, I’m not upset about it, but worse things have been said about other bloggers, and I just wanted to apologize on behalf of any people, anywhere, who have said things to hurt you and discourage you from doing what you love. If there’s one thing I’ve learned during my time blogging and posting on Vogue forums, people will be upset if you buy a new pair of Louboutin shoes every week just as much as they will if you buy a $10 blouse from AliExpress every week (for the record: I don’t).

But don’t think about those people who hate what you do, what you represent. You’re not writing for them, or to them, or about things that they care about. Think about the people who appreciate and encourage you. I’ve had fifty billion positive comments from a gold mirror belt I bought from eBay for $6 and surely more than a couple from the way I dress–these and my readers, those who comment on my blog week after week, are the people who keep me going. Yesterday was just about the first time that someone told me in awe that I should write a blog about where I shop (I don’t often advertise in public that I even own a blog) and that made me super chuffed, you have no idea!

Knowing this, whenever I see someone out on the street or in the shops with a piece of clothing that looks amazing or an outfit that is just perfect, I go up to them, and I honestly tell them so. Always. I’ve run after people like a crazed stalker to compliment them. I know how powerful words are, and things like that really cheer you up if you’ve been having a bad day. So when presented with a choice to make someone’s day for very little effort, I urge you to take it!

And we’re already way off-topic here, I’m sorry, I’m rambling.

The main focus of any criticism towards me from any place is my perspective towards consumerism, in particular, my love of AliExpress. I have amassed a lot of stuff from shopping here to admittedly excessive degrees, but I’ve controlled my spending quite a bit this year and I don’t feel like I have a problem anymore. I don’t even know if any of my regular readers have noticed, but I used to have entire outfits constructed from items I bought online from Chinese wholesalers, but recently I’ve been keeping it down to an average of one of these items per outfit post–hardly the behavior of someone obsessed.

Actually, in the last month here is the exact rundown of the (non-food) items that I have purchased:

  • 1 Pair of White Kidskin Leather heels from Mascotte – $28 (Drool)
  • 1 Pairs of Arch Supports – $9
  • 2 Work Blouses from AliExpress – $16
  • 1 Pair of Jacquard Work Pants from ASOS – $35
  • Birthday Present for Ellen
  • 2 Brooches to liven up my work outfit- $3
  • 100 Allergy Tablets from eBay – $6
  • Rollerblades – $60 (This is my miserable 90’s attempt to become more active)
  • Tomb Raider from the Steam Store – $5 (It was on special, okay?)

I mean it’s weird and unusual that I even have to justify my spending to strangers on the Internet, but there we are. I want to be an open book.

I’ll use this as a segue to present my plans for Carbon Chic for the rest of this year (since I’m being transparent here):

  • Finally open up a mini shop online to sell some of the clothes that I don’t wear (anymore) and maybe some handmade accessories too.
  • Change the design of Carbon Chic (I think I’m favoring something a bit cleaner and girlier..).
  • Buy a DSLR to take my blogging to the next level. I’m already up to the price-matching part in JB Hi Fi. Exciting times!
  • Do a mega series on glasses (since I do wear them, although not many readers know this!) and where to buy them for all sorts of different budgets, including lots of reviews to come.
  • Possibly some more posts about men’s fashion.
  • More DIY and sewing posts.
  • More cooking and baking posts.
  • More emphasis on thrift shopping–I do this more than I shop on AliExpress nowadays, after all.
  • Grocery comparisons–I’m strangely itching to tell people about the pizza I buy..

Well, here’s hoping, anyways. My posts “Carbon Copies” was a universal favorite among readers but it has had a bit of a rest now that I’m developing my own style and no longer really care for designer things or their replicas, but I’ll endeavor to post wishlists every now and again, so those who loved them will still be able to get their eBay/AliExpress fix.

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Now, a small note to my readers:

This blog has changed so much since its humble beginnings back in 2012, and I continue to change, grow, and mature alongside it. I’m so grateful to all the readers that have stuck by me, the ones that have commented and those who simply lurk, my blogger friends from Vogue forums and the ones I’ve befriended along the way, as well as all those Google search referrals for people who are looking for pictures of boys’ hairy armpits (that’s a really freaking weird thing to search for, I hope you know that). I don’t say it as much as I should, but blogging makes me happy because of this amazing feeling of community I get from it, and it wouldn’t be the same without the followers here who love and support me and what I do.

From the bottom of my heart, thank you. Now let’s get on with it!

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6 Comments

  1. Great post.

    Weirdly there are lots of forums that are just about hating other sectors of society. Whilst not as categorisable as sexism/racism/various phobias, I think it all comes from a similar place that can grow inside people. A place that’s part fear, part envy, part sadness, part ignorance, part whatever else.

    It must be pretty weird to log in to one of those forums each week (or whatever) just to attack and vent and diss all these things and people. Surely you’d just feel better to move on and focus energy elsewhere.

    Your future plans sound great, I particularly like the food and cooking.

    Keep up the good and most importantly fun work with the blog!

    • Demi

      Thank you for your words, Markus–it’s nice to see a new commenter!

      For me, the only thing I can understand is jealousy of other bloggers. I used to come from a dark place where I would curse all those bloggers that had succeeded and use envy to try propel myself upward–now I kind of see that it doesn’t work that way, people are going to be successful even if you make it to their level, but you have a choice whether you want to be successful alongside them or despite them. Sort of a “let’s grow together” ideal rather than pushing everyone out of the way.

  2. I think there’s value in constructive criticism, but usually no one goes to a forum explicitly to give advice, only to deconstruct and attack. Being completely open is definitely a better policy; that way any random rumors can be dismissed immediately.

    Brittney

    Another Beautiful Thing

    • Demi

      I completely agree! That’s why whenever I have contests and things like that, I always ask for feedback there when they enter because that’s the only way I seem to get it :(

  3. It’s lovely that you compliment people on their outfits! I saw a medieval knight and jester on the tram today, though didn’t say hi. :P Don’t take what people think negatively too serious.

    Looking forwards to your DIY posts!

    • Demi

      It’s one thing when your relatives do it, but I think you get a whole new feeling when a stranger pays you a compliment–it’s unbelievable!

      I don’t take it too seriously but it makes me sad on the whole scheme of things. Being allowed to discuss things like that is another step towards clear and open communication! I’ve always maintained that the problem with most people nowadays is that they judge themselves by their intentions and others by their actions. If they stopped to think about what it is probably like in the other person’s shoes, there’d be a whole lotta less hate going around. That’s my thoughts on it anyways!

      DIY coming right up ;)

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