The difference between inspiration and imitation is so vast, it’s hard to confuse the two. If I tell you that a specific person inspired my look, then you can expect our outfits not to look exactly alike. On the flip side, if I tell you that I’m trying to imitate someone’s outfit, you best believe our outfits are identical, right down to the scuffs on the shoe. It’s nearly impossible to accidentally style yourself in exactly the same clothing as another person. It may seem petty, but I would take great offense to someone who directly copied one of my favorite outfits; “but Robbie, imitation IS the sincerest form of flattery!” You can say that until your face turns blue, but in all honesty, I don’t want/the world doesn’t need an army of Robbie Stilettos walking around. One is more than enough already.
I view imitation as the evil cousin of inspiration, set in our hearts to rob each and every one of us of our individuality and creativity. When we look at fashion as a whole, you find that imitation happens quite a bit, even in the social circles of celebrities. Most of the time when the rich and famous do it, however, they’re ripping off younger creatives who don’t have the clout to be able to speak out for themselves. Unfortunately, most people know this and gloss over it because they don’t want to hold their favorite celebrity accountable for wrongdoings. If you know someone that actively does this, speak up. They may think it’s completely harmless, but some folks, like myself, do not appreciate it and see it as biting their style.
Another big offender of the imitation-over-inspiration problem lies within our community itself. Take a good look at a few of your favorite big name fashion bloggers, and then check out some of the smaller blogs that follow them. Sometimes you will notice that weeks or months after one has posted, featuring a cool or popular style/outfit, the other will be wearing an almost identical style. I see it happen a lot with smaller blogs, because they don’t think the bigger blog will notice; trust me, we see you. Again, I know it sounds petty, but no one likes an outfit thief!
So, what are your thoughts on the subject? Do you believe that imitation is the most sincere form of flattery? Or are you against outfit theft? Let me know in the comment section down below!