You can start off by not doing this.
What not to do is the most important advice anyone can possibly give to you, for one reason:
The Internet is unforgiving. Not only does it keep track of every photo you've uploaded, even the ones you think you've deleted, but the self-made critics that populate the interwebs are often ruthless and can't be appeased. They will rip apart your carefully-crafted ensemble like a paper-thin polyester shirt from Forever 21, and make you sorry for ever thinking you had style pizzaz.
How do you avoid enraging these needle-eyed critics? I have a few tips. Here, to rescue you, are the 10 Commandments of Fashion Blogging:
1. Thou shalt not post awkward poses
You want to be a fashion blogger so people can admire your clothes and the way you style them. So why chase your readers away with a super-awkward pose or photo? And I don't mean "awkward" like cute-Zooey Dechanel-awkward, I mean seriously awkward.
This is taking "not looking at the camera" to new heights.
Some of these pictures are awkward with a capital A, so awkward that you can barely stand to look at the screen.
Posting pictures like this might earn you visitors, but those visitors might not have the nicest things to say about how photogenic you are.
Yeah, just keep your legs together, kids.
2. However, thou shalt mix up thine poses
Even though you shouldn't go crazy with gravity-defying poses and body contortions, there is something to be said for creativity. Don't stick with the same pose in all of your pictures, or you risk looking like a one-trick pony.
"I seem to have a permanent case of the hip thrust/ half-squat."
I guess she really likes that pose.
3. Thou shalt learn how to use image processing software effectively
While minor editing is recommended (cropping the photo, maybe adding a filter, or blurring the background), there are some instances where the police should be called in for Photoshop abuse.
Grass halo. Enough said.
And now a concrete halo. Try to spot the image processing.
4. Thou shalt not have a "barf face"
You are blogging because you love it, right? Well, expressions like these make it look like someone held you hostage until you produced an outfit post.
5. Thou shalt not abuse the background props
Posing with objects is a cool way to add interest to your photo, and interacting with them gives you something to do with you arms. But whatever you do...
...don't look like you're about to tip over the poor background prop...
...don't don't attempt to assault your props either:
6. Thou shalt not post trends that thou can worketh not: or "Keep proportions in mind: we can't all rock palazzo pants"
We all wish that we could be thin and tall enough to work every trend. In reality, that's just not going to be the case.
For instance, I know I can't pull off really skinny jeans because I'm just not thin enough. Unfortunately, some of these ladies don't know their limits as well.
If an outfit looks like it's wearing you, swap it for another. Aim to post quality pictures of outfits you actually feel comfortable in and look great wearing.
7. Thou shalt not overload an outfit (or "Thou shalt keep it simple!")
Floral printed scarf. Check. Black and white printed dress. Check. Wide black belt, bright blue tights, ankle-strap heels---check, check, check. Can I just have the check, waiter? Because i just lost my appetite for fashion.
And here we have gold lame, we have a white vest, we have yellow shorts, we have a woven clutch, we have a headband, earrings, chains, a watch, and is that a flower?!?
8. Thou shalt take quality pictures
Nowadays, image processing software can really vamp up your pictures, but it is just half of the equation. It all starts with taking a good-quality photo, a photo you can improve on later.
That means thou shalt not include copious amounts of flash in your original photo:
From PIPM blog
Thou shalt also not choose a dim, sketchy backdrop for photos:
And thou shalt not half-ass any photo:
Don't cut off your foot, or clutter up your background.
9. Thou shalt be yourself
Now, this commandment might seem counterintuitive to the ones I presented before it, but let's be honest: you are not going to please everyone. There are bloggers out there who will hate on seemingly innocent outfits.
This outfit was posted to a thread on "Worst fashion blog photos", but I really like it. Maybe i'm just partial to red, black, and white outfits.
There are people who will criticize any aspect of your photo that they can latch onto:
Quote from the thread where I found these pictures
So don't be afraid to be yourself. After all, we read blogs because they provide us with new, interesting, and unique viewpoints. Don't lose sight of why you started blogging in the first place.
10. Most of all, thou shalt be nice to other fashion bloggers
After looking through hundreds of forum posts where bloggers criticize others for everything under the sun, I'm amazed at the hate that I've found.
Examples of the off-topic and unnecessarily harsh comments I found.
Of course, there's nothing wrong with recognizing a really awful picture and gleaning a lesson from it. Especially if the blogger is wearing palazzo pants.
I hope these tips will help you start your blog!
P.S. All photos belong to their respective blogs. I provided the sources when I could identify the bloggers. The reason the rest are unknown is because I culled images from this thread. All comments and opinions are from the forum posters, I merely collected them for this post.