Since October, 2012, time after time, the question why did you start a style blog has been thrown at me. In words, i’ve explained as best I could. So, incase you were wondering, here is a not so short version. I’ve taken Ernest Hemingway’s advice; I write truly and don’t care about the fate of the words.
The Initial Blog
In early 2008 I was really excited about chronicling my daily teacher style. So, I created this blog, then called teacherstyle.com. However, I decided to put it on hold for a later time, as I was also working on launching my bath and body product line, dixiebits.com. Later came this past October, when I resumed posting. The concept is a bit different since i’m no longer a teacher. Rather than from a science teacher’s style prospective, i’m blogging from a plus forty, mother, wife and entrepreneurial perspective. For way to long, I’ve had to, or should I say, chosen to stifle my expressive nature for one reason or the other. But, thank God that all changed last year, when I made the personal decision to live my best life, and in doing so, I’ve had to confront and conquer some fears and move forward with projects and interests that i’ve had archived. So far so good.
The Blog Name – Dixie Beauty
Dixie Beauty – sounds a bit narcissistic, right? I promise you, I’m far from it. Growing up, I never particularly liked my given name, Dixie-Ann. I always felt it was too much name. Had I kept it, i’ll now be Dixie-Anne Lincoln-Nichols (too many hyphens and names) So, I had the Ann legally removed, and now go by Dixie (My family members and friends who know me from child hood still refer to me as Dixie-Anne). Today, when I tell people my name, some ask, “are you from down south?” My response is always, yes, i’m from down south of the caribbean, the most southerly islands on the archipelago, Trinidad and Tobago. I even had a blogger, who did a review for my beauty products, titled her post, “Southern Sweets” because she thought I was from the southern USA. And, if you know anything about American history, you’ll know that the name Dixie is synonymous with some not to pleasant historical circumstances. Anyway that’s another story. So, that’s the Dixie name story.
As for beauty, I like summing it up in the words of Lee Dansky, “My beauty comes from having my own style, living my own way, and knowing my own mind.” And to add a bit to that, beauty radiates from the inside out. I own my beauty. I decide what makes me beautiful and I don’t give two hoots what others think. So, Dixie Beauty simply means that I am beautiful and I own my beauty. Check this, My daughters are Zoe Beauty and Cid Beauty, and whomever you are, you should be your name + beauty. Don’t wait for others to tell you you’re beautiful or to define your beauty. You do so yourself. Nuff said.
A forty one year old wife, mother of two (Zoe, 8 and Cid, 21), a very small business owner, and an incredible optimist. That’s me. Dixie. Hopefully this is common knowledge but, women in their forties aren’t always encouraged to pursue second careers or start businesses. Rather, they are expected to dread turning forty, even thirty for that matter, and settle into the process of aging, “gracefully.” My interpretation of graceful is, take care of your family and chill out in the background. Don’t know about you but, that will not be my reality. Sitting around in the background and beckoning old age isn’t something i’m keen on doing. Yes, I’m aging, and I welcome it. But, I’ll deal with it on my own terms, and the outcome will be between God and me. As for starting over at forty, apparently, that’s definitely not cool, at least for some. “Are you cray? What are you gonna do? How are you gonna live? What if you fail? Don’t depend on your husband for support; What if your marriage doesn’t work out? (these had him fuming for a few days) You can’t give up your pension. Everything you’ve done so far has been for nothing. ” All of which, I heard after deciding to quit my science teaching job last September. Yes, I did! I quit my stable, tenured, retirement benefits guaranteed job to pursue my dream of running my own beauty company and starting a plus forty style blog. God willing, i’ll be pressing on.
Ah, yes, the other part of me – clothing, shoes, handbags, beauty products and all things girly associated became desireable ever since I saw the first mail order catalog at my grandmother’s home, and had my first lesson in oil extraction. Looking back, I was always the weird dresser and odd looking girl with the crazy hair dos in my peer groups. I never told many of my friends I could crochet, sew, re-upholster, varnish furniture, make stuff animals and extract coconut oil. It wasn’t really cool to know that “home maker” stuff.
I love dressing; up or down, it dressing all the same. And, it doesn’t take very much effort to throw my looks together. So, I decided a style blog would be the perfect forum to express and motivate myself, and maybe others during my forties and hopefully, beyond. I scoured the internet for style and fashion blogs for plus forty women, and though I found some, there wern’t nearly enough to represent the millions of multiethnic and multi-faceted women in our society. We are underrepresented, aren’t we? Being in our forties doesn’t mean we all appreciate the same things and dress the same way. Like every other age group, we have different style and lifestyle choices. So, we need blogs that are reflective of such. Don’t get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoy the blogs i’ve found. And, it’s thanks to these awesome plus forty blogs, I was further motivated to complete and proudly exhibit my musings via dixiebeauty.com
Fashionista or Stylista
I am definitely a stylista. As i’ve said before on the blog, I am not, do not, and never have nor ever will consider myself a fashionista. Some of you will probably conclude that my clothing, at times, may not be fashionable, and you’ll be absolutely correct, because they are not; not all the time. Hey, that’s me. And you know that saying, “one person’s trash is another person’s treasure,” This I believe applies to the style world also. Pieces of clothing that I think are stylish, others may think are antiquated. But, I possess my own sense of style and as such, it’s expressed in the way I wear my clothing every day. Some days my style may be classy and chic, some days it may be borderline grunge and street, yet again, some days it may be fashionable and trendy. No matter, whatever I wear and whenever I leave my house, i’m satisfied and feel 100 percent beautiful, comfortable and confident with what I am wearing. Furthermore, i’ve never subscribed to the premise that one should dress age appropriately; tastefully, yes. Style is timeless and oblivious to age. It is not trendy, or even fashionable for that matter. It is a unique interpretation of one’s authentic self. So, what you see my friends is authentically, me.