Sunday, January 27, 2013

An apology...



I get emails...  HUNDREDS of emails... and I'm just plain and simply NOT able to answer you all.  I'd love to - if I could quit my regular job tomorrow and blog full-time, I would do so immediately.

Unfortunately, I have to continue working my regular 8 (9, 10, 11, 12) hour a day job, and put it at least a modest amount of effort in my household.  I then spend quite a bit of my leisure creating new content for The Vivienne Files, and I'm rather committed to eight hours of sleep.

This is just a drawn-out way of saying that if you've emailed me looking for advice, consultation, a special wardrobe etc. - I AM NOT IGNORING YOU.  But I am so far behind in answering emails that I literally have a backlog of four months of unanswered messages, and in 1 day I receive emails that would take me at least 40 hours of work to answer.

I love hearing from you.  I read EVERY email - I promise.  But I can't kid anybody any longer - I can't keep up with responses.  This doesn't mean that I don't care.  It doesn't mean that you, or my blog, don't matter to me.  But I do feel that I'm letting you down...

38 comments:

  1. Janice, you are so fortunate people ask for your advice, etc. And, I'm certain everyone realizes there is only 24 hours per day. For me, I just appreciate the thought and creativity you put into each post. Don't stop that, it's fun for everyone. Maybe a "form" email response to each, a bounce-back so to speak, would suffice until you have an assistant to help you out with this. Big hug, lovely lady...

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  2. One of my students said "I poured out my heart to you in an email and you answered my question in a few words." I pointed out that I sometimes have 30 emails to answer. She was cool with it.

    I am impressed not only by the blog, but also by the fact that you read Ulysses AND that you do 5k on the treadmill. Those in themselves make you Wonderwoman!

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    1. Well, if I don't read, I don't have any creativity to share, and if I don't get on the treadmill, I look like Jabba the Hutt. But the blog is totally a labor of love...

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    2. And, Janice, we are soooooo grateful that you do share! It is evident that this is a labor of love -- thank you, so much! Susan

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  3. I love your blog and look forward to it each day...but please take care of yourself...that is the most important thing.

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  4. Love your blog and very much appreciate all the hard work and hours that go into it. It would be such a shame if it started to feel like a burden and an obligation. Duchesse posts twice a week - perhaps a different schedule might help.

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  5. Your blog is the BEST! I appreciate all of the hard work and effort you put into it. Brava, Janice!

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  6. Don't feel bad. You are such an inspiration to a lot of people and I think everybody understands that you can't possibly answer all the e-mails.

    I love your blog, I so much look forward to your creative posts every day.

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  7. Love your blog and think it was really wonderful of you to mention that the questions sometimes inspire you for the blog. It is unrealistic for you to keep up with all the emails and personal questions.

    Having tried to replicate some of your blog wardrobes in my own personal style and size, I know that it takes a long, long time. Doing this 'virtual' shopping is improving my eye for color and helping me hone in on my own personal style and colors.

    The inspiration you provide is fantastic!!! My wardrobe already works 100 times better. Who would have thought that buying a few 'boring' base items would give me so much more versatility! Thanks!

    You have such a talent for this, have you thought of charging a consulting fee? I know it isn't what you had planned when you started the blog but ....

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  8. I have no idea, Janice, how you find enough hours in the day--much less the boundless creativity--to make this remarkable blog. I salute you for it and am mighty, mighty grateful. The Vivienne Files have become an essential part of my schedule. I don't leave home in the morning without reading it!

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  9. Janice, for heaven's sake, take care of yourself. I think that maybe posting on fewer days a week, a la Duchesse, might lighten up things a bit. We'd all just look forward to those days. And we'd rather have you post than feel you must be each person's consultant. I think I speak for most all of your ardent fans.

    Hugs from NH,

    Swissy

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  10. Agree with Swissy! Love your great blog, but first take care of yourself. Also, when things go bad, change something: the blog few times a week. The content is important, not frequency. Good luck and all the best! :)

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  11. Oh, no! I agree with all the sentiments here! If you are not being paid, you have no apologies to make! Although...you could probably do very well if you did charge. ;)

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  12. What ever you do please don't stop blogging. I for one would go into withdrawal. God first, family second, work third and than the blog. We all understand your time constraints, but would have severe depression if you stopped blogging. I have traveled so far on my journey with you, when I shop you are always with me. My favorite question is, What would Janice think?

    Thanks for all you do.
    Hugs Karen

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  13. Oh the price and burden of success! Janice, you have no reason for guilt. Those seeking free advice should remember what they paid for it. Use the emails for topic ideas rather than feeling obligated to respond individually. Your generous sharing in your blog enrich us all. When time is precious, I think your blog is its best use. I hope you can tell how much we appreciate this blog. Thank You.

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  14. Janice,

    You forgot to add that you also pinch hit for other bloggers along with working at home and in the office, working out, reading, writing the VF's, traveling and maintaining your personal life. How could you answer every e-mail?

    You've earned your popularity by giving us such inspiring posts.
    No problem.

    Jeannie

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  15. I love your blog and look forward to it each day! But my selfishness aside, I understand that there are only so many hours in a day! Take care of yourself.

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  16. No apologies needed! Your blog is one of a kind and we are happy to let you have a real life. That being said...I did have an idea for you...
    What about an FAQ somewhere that would answer some basic questions that you usually get via email? Even a quick tutorial on the labels you use ("what's a 333? what's a six pack? what's a core of four?") might help some newcomers find their way around and give your inbox a bit of a rest.
    Hugs!
    Renee

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  17. No apologies needed....but if it makes you feel better...you are completely forgiven. :-) You daily content is more than anyone could ask. For almost a year now I've been learning so much and been very inspired by your blog. Thank you.

    Thank you. Thank you!

    I love your new getting dressed series and your common wardrobe posts are brilliant.

    Many blessings on your inspired life!

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  18. Oh...and I love your travel-with-a-carry-on posts too. Thanks to you we each had our own carry on for our family's Manhattan trip and it was so easy. (with the exception of big snow boots for kids and bulky jackets - must rethink cold weather travel). But without reading your travel posts we would have spent extra time watching luggage go round and round - instead we were in a taxi in minutes. :-)

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  19. Dear Janice,
    Thank you for such a sweetly presented post. I too love your blog and your generosity of heart. It is clearly unrealistic for you to keep up with all the emails and personal questions - and it's great that sometimes they prompt an idea.

    I too have tried illustrating my existing wardrobe in the Janice mode so as to see possibilities clearly, so now I realise what a lot of time and effort it takes. And I'm just working from my own wardrobe, not the whole internet!

    But with your blog at my side my own style is emerging, I'm making amazing discoveries about wardrobe-building, about myself, and about how little 'enough' can be. It's a wonderful education you're giving us, one step at a time.

    I second the suggestions for fee-based consulting. Your advice is worth so much!

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  20. No need to apologize! We all understand. Love the blog and hope you are able to keep it up. I am learning a lot from reading it. I don't comment often I just lurk! LOL! I plan to try your basics plan as soon as I get to my goal weight. Thanks for all the inspiration!! I say use the emails as ideas for posts and don't worry about it!

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  21. This is such a wonderful blog and I often wondered if (or when) you might burn out. Keep on walking (always) and limit your blog updates. You have spread around enough wisdom and good advice to keep us reading for a while.

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  22. I've been coming to this site for awhile now. I love the capsules; love the separates/combining. I've realized it doesn't work for me because I'm in a warm climate and I live in sheaths and maybe a short-sleeved light cardigan...for about 11 months of the year. I guess it's my "uniform" as I reach a certain age. I'm short and don't look good "broken up" by pants/skirt; I need an illusion of a long line (unfortunately due to problems with the feet, I can no longer wear high heels, which doesn't help). Anyway, none of this means I don't absolutely salivate over the ideas, and I've always said Janice is a Genius/genie!

    But here's the deal: I have been very benefitted, more than anything, by Janice's take/guidance on the Project 333 concept. I've listened and talked but was lagging on the doing of it. I've been a insatiable clothes consumer to the point of ridiculousness (and too much money)...leading up to now where I, as said earlier, keep to the basic sheath, so what is the value in keeping/hanging on to other clothes which I've not touched in (ouch) YEARS.

    What got it real was that in a freak freeze earlier in the month, my 90-yr-old home was "invaded" by two tree rats trying to escape the cold (I hope it's just the two). With everything else going on in life, we've had to turn the house upside down (got the first guy...electrocuted him with a very expensive trap...and we are still feeling wary about not finding Rat #2). It isn't easy to turn my house upside down; we're in end-stage remodeling and everything is a mess (welcome to Rat Heaven...lots of places to burrow in a packing box and other stacks of things which don't yet have their cubbies because of "construction").

    I am so creeped out by the whole unsanitary thing; we thought we'd plugged every hole. If I wasn't motivated to declutter before, clothes et al, I am crazy-motivated now, diving in wherever I can. Ugh, it's like moving, and then sanitizing everything you pick up...and we can frustratingly only work on this on weekends due to jobs, so are exhausted. But, the big news is: (drum roll, please) I completely emptied two double-door closets jammed with "I LOST COUNT" clothes on hangers...and I only kept four things. FOUR. FOUR!!! I filled up three, or was it five, oversized Mac computer boxes, all MY clothes and not my husband's, for the Salvation Army. These were nice things; some still had tags and had never been worn. I know, had I committed time to it, I could maybe have sold something on eBay or tried consignment in a neighboring town...we have no consignment stores where I live...but I've learned in the past that clothes don't sell well at yard sales and, who knows, maybe somebody will be helped by my recycled wardrobe.

    It's embarrassing to have been holding on to so many clothes. I kept trudging along, trying to not get bogged down in remembering what I paid for some of the items, lamenting my size changes which prevents me from seriously ever wearing them again (when I liked them a lot) and worrying that I was getting rid of things I'd regret and "some day" might still need. Funny thing happened along the way: I picked up speed. It was incredibly liberating. I feel literally lighter as I free myself of so much STUFF.

    I have every book on decluttering; I've watched all the TV shows. I've worried I'm a borderline hoarder. Now, I'm finally getting somewhere! Janice, La Vivienne is what kept nudging me; I listened to you...when I didn't listen to anybody else, much less myself. If just one of us gleans one thing from one of your posts, we're that much ahead and very lucky. You do ENOUGH for us as a group; you are making a difference to your audience! I can't thank you enough for the inspiration.

    I'm feeling cured. I'm feeling healed. I feel smarter.

    Just don't ask me to thank the rats.

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    1. Well done Vicki! Congratulations on this huge wardrobe edit, in such difficult circumstances too. And how pleasing that now you feel liberated. I'm still struggling to keep the numbers under control after a major giveaway late last year, but like you I find that Janice is the best - and only real - inspiration. She seems to have an irrestible combination of rationality (can't argue with that) and charming inspiration (oh, I could do that). Good wishes for enjoying your makeover when you get the house back.

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    2. Thank you for the encouragement. Oh, how I love coming here; every one of Janice's posts are scrumptious and I'm going to work on my resistance to separates so I can truly utilize her intelligent clothes-combining because it just makes so much sense. The capsules are so beautiful. Just scrolling thru the archives feeds my love of color and lovely things. Janice, if you are listening, I do agree with what others have said: this should be a paying business/career for you. I know it must be hard for something like that to get up and going, but you have this incredible "start" with a loyal reader base/word-of-mouth.

      I keep thinking of my small, vintage cottage (notorious for never having enough closets in the early 20th century) and how I have no closets. How I've been complaining about this for half-a-dozen years. Well, I in fact DO have closets. Upcoming on the weekend is more clothes sorting/purging: 5 rolling racks of hanging clothes (I shouldn't admit this; it's too embarrassing; clothes were an obsession for my entire adult life of nearly 40 years, plus I inherited some cool, vintage clothing from a relative, so gorgeous), a hall closet with rod; and a craft/pantry closet where I'd taken out the shelves and put in a rod. It feels so good to get much-needed control back into my life. It's like shedding an old skin and emerging fresh and shiny and new.

      I am following Janice's advice from former posts about any new purchases...that they have to be thoughtful, sensible, workable, well-made items; no more spontaneous buying (although I know at some point something serendipitous will come my way even if I say, "how does this help my situation; does this get me to my goal; if I buy this, it means I can't buy something else; etc." (lots of talks with myself these days!).

      Don't mean to go on and on with this, but just want to say to anybody out there, keep reading Janice, stick with her (that's what she'd said to me, and I did!), be inspired, be brave, dig in, weed out; strive for quality and mindfulness when you shop and I really do think if you buy one thing, something else in your closet must go, as it's about the only way to keep your balance.

      Feeling the love; really grateful. I love The Vivienne Files! One of the best things that ever happened to me, when I found this site!

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  23. Dear Janice,
    The message of your blog is less is more, quality over quantity and living wisely and beautifully. So do what you have been called to do and what's in your heart, your blog, and do it well and beautifully. That's your 'core'. You aren't called as a personal stylist unless you decide to. And I agree with my friends who've already posted, you don't need to post daily. You are a blessing to me Janice. Thank you for being true to who you are.
    Linda

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  25. Janice, ... I think anyone who needs more guidance, like myself, can find the answer to most any question in your older blog posts. I've been going through them and have started to get these principles in my head. You've done the work to help us already, so please don't feel guilty.
    Sincerely,
    Jenny

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    1. Amen. I have read faithfully all the blogs and so many times I see the same questions asked again and again as new people discover you. Best advice is, go back and read old posts. There is NOTHING old in them except for the date.

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  26. I love this blog and have been so inspired by your posts. I cannot even imagine the time you put into your blog! I am losing weight (well-planned and very slowly) and am in the process of re-creating my wardrobe. I am determined to have no more than 33 well-planned pieces, and all I need to do is read your blog when the urge to shop for more strikes. Thank you so much for sharing your gift with the world.

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  27. Just ditto to all the comments above - read your blog, love your blog - and don't expect more!

    Maybe you could add a monthly feature "reader's choice" in which you respond to one request with a post?

    Thank you!

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    1. I think that is an excellent idea!

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  28. Perhaps it is time to follow your passion into a new career as a stylist?

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  29. Your work has done so much for so many already, how can anyone begrudge you the time you need for the other important aspects of your life? No apologies needed at all. However, I do hope you will continue with the blog. Your blog has become my addiction and I can't tell you how much money I have saved by coming here every day. Thank you.

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  30. Thank you for the help and inspiration.

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  31. There are some great suggestions here for lightening your work load. Someone suggested an assistant, perhaps in jest, but that might be a good job for an intern (no pay, but experience with one of the leading fashion bloggers). At least he/she could categorize the emails, and perhaps select the monthly reader's choice??

    Just some suggestions. Please, be well. You bring so much to us, we want nothing but the best for you.

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  32. I would pay for your blog.

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