Accidental Icon: Invisible Visibility
As some of you might know I have been coordinating and planning a Sustainable Fashion Show and Panel at my university. It is the culmination of a series of events that have created a collision of my two work worlds: Accidental Icon and Professor. Many people seem to think that is a good thing and it should make me happy. I could not unreservedly say it does.
I have been challenged in the last several weeks by this convergence of my public (Accidental Icon) and private (university professor) work identities. I must admit I have very mixed feelings about it. I did manage to keep Accidental Icon all to myself so to speak, for a year and a half before my university got wind of it. For some reason, perhaps dear readers you could offer me your thoughts, the idea of a university professor becoming a fashion blogger seems to be compelling. So there have been some features lately that address these two identities. Somehow I really wanted to keep these two parts of my life in different compartments. I guess it was naive to think I could.
I have been very aware of the risks of putting yourself out in the world in a very public way as I have chosen to do by writing a blog, although I have to admit I really did not expect all this attention. It would be dishonest to say I don't like it. I have been careful in what I reveal and until now feel I have been in control of it. As I have said before, Accidental Icon has allowed me to play with a self that is far more extroverted than the one that is me in my personal life. For some reason I am ambivalent about sharing her in my everyday work world. Following the preference of one of my favored designers, the notoriously elusive Rei Kawakubo, my aim with Accidental Icon has always been that people "get to know me through my clothes". What I choose to wear, how it inspires me and how I write about that choice is the way I have wanted to tell my story. Up until now I have felt that I could maintain a state of being "invisibly visible". I still want to aspire to that. But I guess if you wear a coat with red lips in the middle of a blizzard and don't think you'll be seen it may be more of a leap than I originally thought.