When I was growing up the phrase ‘Girl Next Door’ was thrown about in Mizz and J-17 so often it became some sort of twisted idea of what I thought I should look like. Used most in reference to Rachel from Friends, the pressure to have long, sleek hair, a tiny waist and tanned skin often left me feeling like I just wasn’t good enough, and that no boy would ever fancy me which was of course of paramount importance at that age.

I remember one non-school uniform day I spent the entire day dodging insults and comments as I had turned up wearing a Kurt Cobain t-shirt, polka dot midi skirt and converse, which is actually pretty much outfit de-jour this summer. Ok I may have also added a Hello Kitty backpack, but it was all a far cry from the Juicy Couture tracksuits and Jane Norman tote bags the rest of the girls at my school would wear and left me feeling very much like the female version of Marcus from About A Boy but with ever so slightly less impressive singing skills.



Outfit: Headband, sunglasses and trousers from Primark | Venice T-Shirt from Joanie Clothing (gifted) | Rattan Bag from Emmeline Store (own brand) | Flatforms from Supergra

As a woman you always feel the pressure of having to fit into some sort of cookie cutter idea of what you should be, and the girl next door phrase was the one that often hung over my head as I was growing up. Unfortunately I am not blessed with Jennifer Aniston's naturally slim physique, and I just don't feel comfortable dressed up in heels, a tight body con dress and the entire make up aisle of Boots on my face. Not that there is anything wrong with that, it just isn't me. Stepping into the blogger space there is yet another expectation to live up to of what a blogger should look like. Blogger style this, Instagram girl outfit that, none of it appeals to me and none of it suits me either, and that's ok!

It might have been the heavy influence music and the style of my favourite musicians has had on me during my adult life, but I have never quite fitted into the mould of what my fifteen year old mind thought I should look like. When I was younger I always felt like the odd one out, I knew I should just wear what made me happy so that’s what I did, but it was never quite in-line with what was cool. Even through University where the other girls on my Fashion Journalism course would turn up with the designer bag of the moment I would rock up in a ditsy floral dress and Doc Martens.





As I’ve gotten older never fitting into the girl next door mould has become less of a worry for me. I love having tattoos and my nose pierced, I love the almost vintage twist my outfits seem to learn toward and never dressing the same as someone else. It’s this which makes me an individual, and while it might not be popular in a mainstream, Mizz and J-17 approved sort of way, my style makes me happy and dressing in a way that makes me feel confident and at peace with myself is the most important thing. I do wish someone had told me to leave the Hello Kitty backpack at home though.