Sunday, 22 May 2016

Becoming a better blogger, and vintage Versace

My stair pose, taught to me personally by the one who made it famous: Sheila of Ephemera. I'm wearing my vintage 100% wool Gianni Versace Couture pants, made in Italy, with front zip and inner ankle zips, $15 maybe - I forget now - newly sprung from a spacebag. And a bold fuchsia oversized silky top and red earrings. That's my red journal on the steps.

And now, onto important matters.

Vintage Gianni Versace pants, Bag and a Beret, Melanie Kobayashi

I reeeeally, reeeally want to be a better blogger and Instagrammer. That's why I was so happy when Suzanne sent me a link a while ago to a YouTube video by wildly successful Aimee Song, who has 3.5 million IG followers and almost 300,000 followers on Bloglovin' (Song of Style) - geez, that's a lot.

I thought I'd try out some of her tips. Here we go.

I have to take a bird's eye photo of what goes into my body in the morning. She had an artful cappuccino photo with her clutch and sunglasses. Well, I forgot to take a "before" shot, but this is the dirty bowl from my oatmeal, plain, with milk and half a sliced banana and Kashi cereal sprinkles.


Not bad, but not as good as Aimee's, even though I placed an artboard on the tabletop because it is more arty than the regular tabletop and I included my napkin bit for visual punch. Still, it's a bit boring.


Above: Definitely better. Oh, there's a little Kashi nugget at 4:30 on the bowl dial.

Below: Nighttime dining photo. Aimee says when dining in a dimly-lit restaurant with friends, it's a good idea to illuminate your food as a group using light from your cell phones. This is the best I could do.


I knew I wouldn't be dining out this evening so I practiced by dragging my breakfast tray into the bathroom where it was dark and lit it with a flashlight because I don't have a cell phone, or friends. There's that nugget again!

Next: Aimee says to make sure you take multiple detail shots of your outfit, especially your shoes and your pedicure.


I call this photo Fun With Band-aids. This is a springtime look many gals know too well as our warm-weather sockless footwear bites the crap out of our tender winter feet. I decorated my Band-aids with Sharpies and white-out. Nice, right? Those are my white platform flip-flops.

And finally, more accessories.


I used these for making this post. That's the flashlight on the left. I had it turned on but it's hard to see. You know why, right? Aimee suggests using natural light so I did.

Aimee has lots more fun suggestions, like asking strangers to take your photos and being bossy about it, using back-lighting to get a halo effect and natural light to look good. She didn't mention anything about having a team of professional photographers to take your photos though.

Sigh.

Okay, so maybe not. Pffft.
To be fair, Aimee's video was helpful in that surreal if-only-I-were-normal kind of way.

So back to reality...

Vintage Gianni Versace pants, Bag and a Beret, Mel Kobayashi

You can see the purplish tones in the blouse in this photo.

Mel Kobayashi, journal collage, Bag and a Beret

And I've been making collages lately. This is one of them.

That's all. I'll link up to Patti at Not Dead Yet Style for Visible Monday and Catherine at Not Dressed as Lamb for #iwillwearwhatilike. Catherine kindly included me in her lineup of "9 Fashion Bloggers with a Really Unique Sense of Style." Thank you! I may not have 300,000 followers, but I have you guys - you're the BEST!!

Have a great week!



62 comments:

  1. You look incredible, and your sense of humor AND sense of style are hard to beat! Thank you for cheering us up, for making us laugh, for turning the world upside down, for the visual treat your blog provides every single time, Melanie! Love your collage - such a dynamic picture, just like you are! Much love to you, and a bazillion of appreciative followers.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Natalia, your comment made me feel warm - I'm pretty sure it wasn't a hot flash. I'm glad if I can make you laugh. Sometimes I just think I'm being daft! I'm so glad you dropped by. Thank you always for your generous, kind comments.

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  2. mwhahah, your pedicure is the most fabulous one I've seen these days (and band-aids are trendy; everybody is wearing them on their 'tender Winter feet'!!)
    You put a smile on my face and some inspiration in my mind everytime I read your posts!! loving your witty funky sassy style!, love your shirt (that's a fav fuchsia shadow)and your pants fabulous color and shape, and they have ankle zips!!
    Becoming a better blogger is now available to me indeed, even if I've not a flaslight nor friends, and my pedicure is not so cool than yours! ;DDDDD
    besos

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    Replies
    1. Oh yes, now we can all benefit from these tips. Hahaha!! I wonder what it's like to live in that world of perfection. It's a scary thought. Sometimes I think they should make socks that are one gigantic band-aid. Now THAT would be attractive. Hahaha!!
      Thanks for your positive energy!

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  3. hahahaha! your artful breakfast has made me feel so hungry and artful. And the toes!! You are saving me $30 this week alone on a boring pedicure. The trousers are heaven, and you will always have us. Worth more than a million followers! xox

    -Patti
    http://notdeadyetstyle.com

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    Replies
    1. Hahaha!! Thanks, Patti. I'm having a blast over with your Visibles, as always.

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  4. YOU ARE THE BEST 11111111111111. opps. 11111111111 opps. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! yes.

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    1. This is the BEST COMMENT EVER! I would enshrine it if I could. hshshshs. opps. HAHAHA!! Thank you!!!!

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  5. Girl you need no help with your photos, you are so funny! Love your style and silliness. And that collage is so clever!!!!!

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    1. Thank you. That means something from you - a great photographer! I'm glad you could visit.

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  6. I am not sure if you have the "Sheila pose" down quite right. She has that mastered.
    Multiple shots of the outfit? I can't figure out why people can't get the gist on the first and best one. Someday I will post the multi-shot outfit right down to my band-aided toes and a gratuitous shot of my ample a** just for good measure.
    You, of course, know I am one of your loyal fans!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, Tami, you are quite right - I'm still in training on the stair pose. I think the problem is I rested my left butt on the stair when I should have used the right one. And the concrete was painful. Heh. Like all pros, Sheila makes it look so effortless. Sheila, if you read this - any feedback?

      Thanks, Tami, for dropping by. I'm always happy to see you and read your great comments.

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  7. You crack me up, Melanie!!!!!
    xo

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    1. I am so glad, Carol. Thank you!

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  8. You are hilarious!! I KNEW you were going to misbehave with the IG advice!!! I also knew you were going to chuck a load of pens at it!!! I notice that on IG-a lot of stationery goes on show. I decided to randomly include a silver Berol felt-tip with one of my book posts-not really sure why, because it seems to be a thing!!! Thank you for always being so fun!!! I always smile coming over here. And speaking of fun, when do we hear about VOGOFF ?Xx

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    1. Ah, yes, Kezzie, you are subconsciously becoming professional. It starts off innocently enough with a silver Berol and then it's Gucci sunglasses on the side. I urge you to proceed with caution. Hahaha!

      I tried to write up the VOGOFF guidelines to include in this post but I took a nap instead. (It's exhausting trying to be professional. Heh.) I'll do it soon - I'm excited about it.

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  9. Oh my, that looks like so much...effort, to do all that composition and light and artfulness. I'm exhausted just looking at your pictures. Fortunately, I can just scroll up and down to those incroyable high-waisted Versace trousers! OMG, they need to meet my Versace high-waisted jeans and spawn little high-waisted children.

    So much fabulousness in one post. My merely adequate post debuts shortly. At least it features Danger Pants.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know. This pro stuff is giving me a headache. And please, no children! Kittens, that would be sweet. Heh.
      Sheila, I LOVE your danger pants!!! And all your posts. I tried the stair pose but you are DEFINITELY the queen.

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  10. Love it! Apart from causing me to shiver to the core of my self, sitting here huddled in a polar fleece robe on a freezing "Autumn being Winter" day, exposing your toes!

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    1. Seeing bare toes when you're cold is definitely not a good idea. At least you have polar fleece. Keep warm, Maryanne!

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  11. U look ahhhhmazing as usual and I think Sheila knows what's up as far as bloggy pic techniques!!!!

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    1. You got that right about Sheila!! It takes years of experience to make it look as good as she does.

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  12. Awww ... bless. There seems to be a world of anxiety there in the link (deftly managed with a lot of humour at least). It worries me a bit when I see people trying to approximate what exists via Photoshop in the media - but in real life. I hate having my photo taken, so I'm very impressed by the magical photogenic qualities I see lol.

    Those colours look epic together. Perhaps you need a small cushion for the chair recline? After all, Sheila seems to be sitting on a covered staircase - and not concrete/stone. Also, whilst sitting on cold surfaces definitely won't cause haemorrhoids (old wives tale debunked) it is far from comfy.

    I think I need to collage my feet.

    Elaine Monkeypaints

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I hated, HATED having my photo taken. Blogging helped me get over the fear but only if I'm the photographer.
      A cushion is definitely the answer for a novice. Plus I could maybe use it as a sleigh for some stair action shots. Heh.
      Okay, that's good news about the wives tale too. Hahaha!
      Thanks, Elaine.

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  13. So, have you posted your efforts on IG? How are your numbers now?
    What I really need from you is: "How to wear a shirt."

    Bahahahaha.

    Pedicure is awesome. If nothing else, post that!

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    1. I've been working on "How to wear a shirt" for quite some time now. I can never get it quite right. My foot keeps getting stuck in the sleeve. I don't know what I'm doing wrong.
      I got Sharpie dots on my actual toes as well. Heh. It's a whole other fashion statement.
      Yeah, numbers, schumbers.

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  14. funny lady, are you. (my Yoda impression)

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  15. Hmmmmmm.....I think that bossy little girl needs to take a few tips from you!! That video reminded me of an updated version of the personal hygiene films we used to have to watch in junior high. Stick your butt out and ask a stranger to take your picture. I can't wait to try that. You are so funny. I loooooove your tips. You really and truly are The Best!!!!

    ReplyDelete
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    1. The butt thing might work if you're, say, 20. I'd like to have another photographer on stand-by if I tried that with a stranger. Although I did ask strangers to take a photo of my "flying" in front of a billboard once. Heh. He did a good job.
      Thanks, Connie. I love your comments.

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  16. Ha ha ha! I love your breakfast images, and that 'Fun With Band-aids' look will be copied the world over, I hope you realise. Looking lovely, as always xx

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    1. Yes, I was hoping in an earlier comment for an entire toe sock made out of Band-aids. Would I make millions?
      Thanks for your comment!

      Delete
  17. mel - i love you!!!!!
    thanx - very much - for that gorgeous post!!!!! and you look killer in that trousers - formidable!!!!!
    since i was a child i got always asked if i could be normal - **pleeeaaase!*** sorry - my software is not programmed like that - i´m a freak by birth.......
    tons of hug&kisses!!! (hope you don´t mind...)
    xxxxxx

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    1. First of all I gotta thank my fabulous fellow fashiion blogger Beate for sharing your post so I could come across it. How hilarious. And with that kind of wit and humor you are going to hit 500k followers in no time! You are quite the inspiration and I make sure to be following you right away! xo Sabina

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  18. Artful cappuccino shots? Bluck. I think you knocked it out of the park with those Kashi Nugget shots, especially the flashlight illuminated one. I think they should make that a filter option on IG! That many followers sounds like an awful lot of pressure to me. :)

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    1. I hope, nay, expect, that artful Kashi Nuggets shots will become the standard format soon. Hahaha. Thanks for the laugh. Yes, with that many followers there must be pressure but it would be easier to take if you make hundreds of thousands of dollars. Or not!! Actually, probably not.

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  19. Mel,

    You really know how to take the piss! I salute you.

    Your blog is brilliant. Don't change a fecking thing!

    I love the unusual combination of colours in your outfit - as always you look so stylish and glam! I see you haven't painted your toenails - me neither - I've been meaning to for week but I hate, hate , hate painting my toenails so it takes a while; sometimes summer's over before I get round to doing it!

    xxx

    Veronica
    vronni60s.blogspot.com

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    1. Hahaha, thank you!
      These colours took me by surprise. I thought it might be boring, but the colour palette has the coolest vintage vibe. And my journal and earrings, I felt very pleased with the result.

      No polish on my toes - you wouldn't be able to see much behind the band-aids anyway. Then if I do paint them it takes about six months for it to come off. Heh. They have those sticker nails now. I might try that for my toes.

      Glad to see you, Veronica!

      Delete
  20. Stupendous trousers, love! They look ace on ya.
    Thank feck I'd left the catering industry before Instagram was invented. Self obsessed tossers letting their food go cold while they photograph it and share it with the world.
    God knows who follow these internet stars. Much prefer your rules to theirs. x

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    1. Vix, oh yes, you must be horrified by the food photos. In the video the woman stands on her chair in the restaurant to take the food shot. That's dedication!

      I like your rules best of all, Vix!!!

      Delete
  21. Clearly Aimee is young and cut from an entirely different pattern,runs with a puppy pack, eats from a funky overly photo shopped bowl, sings in a pitch people over 30 can't hear...? Give her some time to be young and foolish...right?
    As always Melanie you just knock my socks off and I'm laughing too hard to even try to find them.

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    1. Haha, as I say, your sock probably ran off with mine; they're somewhere in France.

      Aimee is brilliant at what she does, and I truly salute her. More than anything I am highlighting how non-brilliant I am at doing mainstream things that make lots of money. I would feel bad if she took offense with this post.

      Thanks, Marilee, for your comment. I shall write back soon!

      Delete
    2. I'm certain that Aimee is smart and savvy enough to know that you and your followers are looking for a blog that has a unique view of the world just as her followers do. It's truly the contrasts that evoke appreciation for some things and the blogfull arts are among them.

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    3. Oh yeah! !
      Our socks were photographed at Cannes by paparazzi :-)!!!

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    4. Oh yeah! !
      Our socks were photographed at Cannes by paparazzi :-)!!!

      Delete
    5. I'm certain that Aimee is smart and savvy enough to know that you and your followers are looking for a blog that has a unique view of the world just as her followers do. It's truly the contrasts that evoke appreciation for some things and the blogfull arts are among them.

      Delete
  22. Just when I thought you couldn't possibly be any more perfect. Wow! The colors, your figure. Wow. I wish I could pull off this look. It's a stunner!

    - Anna

    www.melodicthriftychic.com

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    1. What are you talking about? You always pull off amazing looks! But I appreciate your comment. Thank you!

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  23. LOLOLOLOLOLOL...OMG this post is hilarious!!!!! Brilliant my dear, brilliant!

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    1. PS I think you need more stair to really perfect The Sheila Pose.

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    2. Oh you are right, Sue! I feel squished, at least I shall blame the stairs. Hahaha. And I didn't cross my legs properly, and the remote ruins my arm positioning. Dang!

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  24. I love you just the way you are, magic everytime.
    I always wonder about Sheila´s pose???
    Much love and admiration
    XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

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    1. Sheila has it down to a Fine Art. Forever legs. I looove her unique pose; it's her trademark. Thanks, Mis P, for visiting. It's always a privilege.

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  25. Best post ever and love your look too.

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    1. Denton! Hello! Thank you so much! I'm so glad to see you here I'm laughing. Let's have a drink, shall we, to celebrate?

      Delete
  26. I haven't got time to read all the funny comments too. I cracked up seeing your feet. Hahaha. Your outfit took my breath away. Never in a million years would I have come up with a red / burgundy shirt to go with those blue, those fabulous and blue trousers (high rise is soooo fashionable... I know you are not interested...). I recently bought blue trousers. Guess what I will be wearing with them... right. Call it inspiration. Call it copy.. I don't care. But I will be nice and say thank you. Thank you lovely Melanie.
    Greetje

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  27. You look gorgeous in your color combination and your vintage high rise Versace pants. Congratulations on the feature on Catherine's blog. You are a STAR!

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  28. Glad I came back to see that you didn't let all those nuggets of wisdom I share with you pass you by! LOL

    That breakfast is like the one I was served in jail. Hahahahahahaha! You must have had to perform some lurid task for those Kashi sprinkles. Don't tell me. This is a family internet. Hahahahahahahaha!

    You should seriously put that pedicure on Instagram! You will have started a new craze! Sersiously!!! How do you get the white-out off? I didn't even know they still made that stuff. Must be for the hipsters.

    I LOVE the trousers. What a gorgeous colour.

    I am in wonder of your collage. What fun! Glad you have been getting creative.

    bisous
    Suzanne

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  29. Wow what a great post.You made me smile. So funny. Your Outfit is stunning. What a wonderfull colour, this blue trouser have. Melanie you are Superwomen ! :)

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  30. Well I never heard of Aimee Song, but I can't imagine she would have bandaids as good as yours.
    But that is OK, I am sure she tries and that counts.

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  31. Thank you for this Melanie....for making me smile,and reminding me that there is a real (messy) life to be enjoyed! :oD
    That trouser/blouse combination is knock-out!!!!
    Your figure makes me a little sick, if the truth be told....fabulous lady. XXX
    Samantha
    FakeFabulous.com

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  32. As are you, my dear. As are you.

    LOVE me an Einstein toe. And the syringe! Perfect.

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