In October of last year, I launched my fits stream on my website. It’s a permanent space that hosts a living stream of my outfits of the day. I’ve been really getting into fashion this past year and have been trying various experiments to force myself to be creative with the clothes I have and try things outside of my normal comfortable style.
I started documenting my fits by taking photos every day so I could see the progression of my journey. It’s like those body or age transformation journeys: photos composed over time paint a textured picture of how you’ve grown as a person, and I wanted to replicate that for my style.
I view my style as the physical manifestation of my view of myself. Your style reflects your personality and your comfort and confidence expressing that personality. It’s one of the ultimate litmus tests for how in tune you are with your own being and presentation to the world around you. Fashion and style have slowly gotten a bad rep, especially from the tech and professional world. It’s seen as a waste of time or even vain to pay attention to what you look like. Those characterizations aren’t completely off base. It does take a non-trivial amount of time to explore and develop your fashion sense, just like any creative outlet. You can also chase fashion for the wrong reasons and become obsessed with just the external image that others perceive, chasing looks for the clout and the validation rather for an expression of self. But if you do it for yourself and leverage it as an avenue for experimentation, it can be incredibly gratifying and stabilizing for your comfort with being yourself.
My experimentation with fashion started a couple years back when I first moved out to San Francisco. I challenged myself to sequentially go through my whole wardrobe, choosing the next one in line every new day and forming an outfit around that single piece. I intended to force myself to learn how to improvise an outfit that worked with anything, even those old clothes that I dreaded wearing or those new clothes that I thought I would love but never ended up wearing. I think this experiment helped me really develop and tune my taste in feeling out the clothes that I naturally gravitated towards and those that I naturally avoided. It also forced me to go outside my comfort zone and try things with clothes that I had never really worn before, whether that meant being more creative with clothes that felt outdated or being more adventurous with clothes that felt too bold.
Personal Interest Streams
I started off sharing in a Twitter thread, but all the different social media optins didn’t quite have everything I wanted:
- a permanent space that I could keep referring back to
- easy on-the-go curation of and addition to the collection
- easy browsing for others, no special downloads
Twitter … Instagram … wanted to ship my own
Google+ had a hint of this with their circles for sharing with specific friends and telegram sort of gets at it with channels.
closest thing available now is maybe Dispo with a roll — except it becomes collaborative and you’re reliant on the developers to provide the controls you want.
I want the customizability of low-code apps like Coda with the integrated, smooth UX experience and user network of social media apps.
what other sorts of streams do you imagine or would you want?
Aside on Personal Websites
personal websites are our digital extensions, they should feel that way: intimate, specific, fun.
what would it feel like if more personal websites felt like our rooms or a window into our lives?
The architecture I used exemplifies a lot of Simon Willison’s ideas around personal data ownership and read-only data for display. For example, I
- osxphotos for getting access to my data
- small UX touches to really shape up the experience
- link copy
- gallery expand
- handling media content is really hard, especially when they are high-res
- resizing, previews, lazy loading, responsive displays
- hosting photos on s3
- added cloudfront CDN for caching and serving and saving costs
- future improvements with github automations — need to figure out this existential problem with getting access to data from cloud servers which are ideal for automation but that not meshing well with apple photos which is all verylocal (but google photos doesn’t give you the data)