What it Means to Start a Blog

A question I seem to get a lot from random people is how to start a blog. While I do not mind sharing what I know, what I have found out the hard way, and what I still have yet to learn, I think people drastically underestimate what I do!

It is one thing to be an Instagram influencer and another to be a blogger. While you can, of course, do both, it takes a lot to be successful and each! Blogging includes both the visual aspect and being able to write. While I would not describe myself as a creative writer, having the blog does challenge me to think creatively to come up with different topics to write about to have a reader or two enjoy.

Of course, anyone can start a blog. That is the great thing! If you are really into it though, that is even better because most people lose interest over time. There are so many more things I want to add to my blog such as interviews, videos, cool graphics and more. (I especially want a new template!) However, everyone has brilliant ideas, but not everyone follows through.

A few tips on what it REALLY takes :

Hard work : I take pictures at least once every two weeks, edit them, schedule them for a post on Instagram, schedule for my blog, once they come out I have to pin all of the images to Pinterest boards, add daily FB posts to my blog FB page and engage with other blogs. It can get a bit tiring when you add up the little stuff since I have to fit all of that in with a full-time job.

Consistency : Not everyone sticks with it. While sometimes it is a great to act on spur of the moment ideas, think if you have time for it? Do you have content ideas that will last more than two months? Can you post consistently? What are you going to do after the hype of your first few posts come out and now there is a lull? What is going to set you apart?

I post twice a week : This sets me apart from many of the bloggers I know. I tell girls that I post to the blog twice a week and they are always surprised. It is hard to maintain a schedule and keep posting so frequently but somehow I make it work!

Insta vs. Blogging : I have a schedule down for how I post to my blog and Instagram. Right now I focus more on Instagram because it is more popular. I say “focus” and mean I engage more on Instagram. If Insta were to go down forever I would still have my blog! But I wouldn’t recommend someone to do what I do because it is time-consuming! Blogging and Instagram are two different creatures and to succeed in either takes different formulas.

Top : (similar) // Jeans : Levis // Heels : (similar)

 

Interview with What Vanessa Wears

I loved getting to know Vanessa from What Vaness Wears! I actually reached out to her to get together to meet up and shoot and she was sweet enough to say yes. I wanted to continue my blogger series and I knew she would be a perfect fit! I asked her a few questions below and I put up some of my outfit details of course. Let me know if you like the series or what questions you would like to know from your favorite bloggers!

What made you start blogging?

I wanted to start blogging first of all to share my thoughts about fashion and my take on what’s in-trend because I feel like a lot of people don’t know not just what they should or shouldn’t buy to be in-trend, but also what options they have. Sometimes people just need to see someone wearing a look styled in several different ways to inspire them, and I want to help them with that. Another thing is that I wanted to talk about my faith, how it’s a part of my life and how it affects me and the way I live. It may be uncomfortable to discuss faith for some, but it’s something that it’s important to me. God has changed me and has done so much for me and I want to share that story when I can and when it makes sense both to people who believe and those who don’t. It’s ultimately this message: God loves you, he is for you, and you are destined for amazing things!

What is your favorite Summer trend?

This is a hard one for me because I love all kinds of trends, but I’d have to say pearl anything. I have a pearl bag, pearl earrings, a pearl hairpin, and I’m not done looking for more pearls! I think they’re so cute and girly. It makes it more fun to have these accent accessories during the summertime. I get so many compliments from wearing this trend. It’s a must-have right now.

Where do you get your outfit inspiration from?

I get a lot of my outfit inspirations from working at Bloomingdales, actually. We get a lot of new clothing every week and our departments focus highly on what’s in-trend at the moment. So I get education, inspiration, but most importantly…discounts! Haha. It’s a beautiful cycle. Also, I’m ALWAYS inspire by my favorite bloggers: Brittney Xavier, Paola Alberdi, and Aimee Song…they’re literally fashion QUEENS!

What is your go-to beauty product?

I’d have to say Mario Badescu’s Facial Spray with Aloe, Herbs & Rosewater. After blotting throughout the day with my beauty blender Blotterazzi, this spray refreshes my skin and rehydrates my makeup! For a dewy, but not oily glow all day long.

What is one thing that can make you happy right away?

Coffee! Lol, especially in the morning. When you get that first sip…mmm! Heaven!

I actually saw two other bloggers wear a similar outfit and I just had to do it for myself! I actually wore this not just to shoot but when I went to Cha Cha Matcha with Vanessa. I did not get as many looks as I thought I would. That is the thing about living in California, people wear different things sometimes and while you may get some stares, there isn’t half as many as I would get if I was in Texas. Then again, if I was in Texas I wouldn’t mind because I liked my outfit and it’s way more fun then the basic things the people that are staring are probably wearing!

I opted for the brown cross body because I had not shown it much love recently. Also, it kind of added a different element to my matchy-matchy outfit. Of course, I am a sucker for pink and the corset helped keep the shirt down and in place. I could not find a tee that was long enough without being too big on the top or sleeves. I actually ordered two different shirts! I ended up just wearing white spandex underneath.

T-shirt dress : Missguided // Corset : Forever 21 

 

The LA Blogging Community

If I am being honest, my whole reason for really wanting to be here in LA has to do with my blog. While I am 50% here for work, 50% really is interested in what being here can do for expanding my blog. If I did not have this, LA would just be another cool place to visit. While I hope to rise in my career in Fashion PR, that idea actually came after my move. I came to LA knowing no one. Luckily one of my sorority sisters joined me for the summer, and I had a few acquaintances along the way. But slowly, the friends I have made have even come from blogging.

Not only do these girls get what it’s like to have to come up with new creative ideas and shoot them, but they are so supportive! I have not met one of these girls in real life and got the vibe that they are more about the competition than friendship. They have all been so sweet and willing to meet up and not just shoot, but really get to know each other.

In comes LA Social hour. I met some of the girls that formed LA social hour at a previous LA blogger meet up. Now, the group puts together small events to socialize, learn and grow your blogging community. They conduct panels and social outings and each of the girls that formed the group is so genuine and inclusive when it comes to every person that comes to the events.

I have been so lucky to become apart of this niche, and I hope to continue to grow my friendship and connections with these amazing girls! This community has truly made being somewhere new and living so far away easier than I would have ever expected. I was talking to a friend back home and she commented on how it looks like so much fun and that I am finding new friends. While it did take a bit, this really has been such a great experience for me and the networking is always great as well!

 

 

 

Wonderworld LA

If you keep up with my Instagram stories, then you know that this past week I had the opportunity to go to the Wonderworld LA pop up museum! This was an interactive pop-up experience that featured 10 picture perfect rooms to take fun pictures in. Since it was an opening for the museum, there were lots of cool surprises in every room. I got my nails done, grabbed some cotton candy, put on fake lashes and I was ready for my close up! I usually do not really like to get my photos done at these places, but this event was more than that! I really enjoyed going with my blogging friend,Gina from Teenie Genie, and I saw so many other LA blogger babes there as well!

Just a little about Wonderworld LA: Each room has a different feel. There is a mushroom room, a room where you can take a picture on the moon, a room with giant teacups and, of course, a flower room. These are just a few of the 10 rooms they have.

If I were you, I would sour their Instagram page before going and check out their design so you can match your outfits to each room. It also helps to go get inspiration from other people who went and see what creative ideas they had.

Another great part about this was, as I mentioned, getting to see other LA bloggers I follow and have become friends with! (I have a whole post on the LA blogging community coming soon so stay tuned for that.) I honestly did not plan to take any pictures at the pop-up. I feel like I always end up saying that and making a blog post so I should plan more accordingly outfit wise. I just wore a casual look and I later decided it would be a break from the regular fashion content I show. I was just planning on taking Instagram stories and not being their too long, but it turned out to be more fun than I thought!

Tickets for the museum can be found HERE and I would book in advance since you usually have to reserve a day for these kinds of pop-ups.

 

Interview with Teenie Genie + Outfit Details

I was so lucky to have been able to go with Gina (Teenie Genie) to Palm Springs for the Coachella events this year! She has gone the past four years and since this was my first time it helped so much to have someone who knew their way around. I met Gina at a blogger meet up in LA and I was so excited to go with her. It’s so much easier to go with other bloggers because they understand the need to stop for pictures or when you want to take a fun story for your Instagram. Not only did we go to lots of fun events, but we also got some great shoots in.

I have not done a blogger interview in a while and I wanted to continue that series! I also added lots of outfit shots and pieces to this post because I just could not resist!

Visit Gina’s Instagram and Blog!

What made you start a blog? 

It was about a year ago where I found myself bored in my personal life. I spent a lot of time on Instagram having fashion blogger envy, wishing I could do something like that. I was at a networking event with a group of pretty-high level marketing executives talking about the marketing strategy I had taken at my company, and the programs I had implemented in my short six months there, “You built a website by yourself?” “How did you generate that many leads in one month?” “What’s that platform you used?” “Wow, you are so creative.”

It was at that moment, the floodgates opened. I realized I knew a lot. My positions at startups had helped me cultivate a unique skill set that many people didn’t have. Was I creative?

These conversations ultimately gave me the confidence to start my blog. I desperately wanted to explore fashion, but I didn’t want to leave my job, and I didn’t want to work for someone else. I knew I wanted to do something with petite fashion since I was experienced and it was something I could help others like me with. My nickname in college was Teenie Genie and it was my Instagram name so I chose the name TeenieGenie Style. If these girls could do it, why couldn’t I? There was nothing stopping me. Nothing to lose. I dove in head first and haven’t stopped swimming since.

What is your favorite part about blogging? 

Connecting with my followers and other bloggers! I love to write, but sometimes it can be really hard to buckle down and get into a creative zone. A lot of time, I’ll stay up all night writing. I put a lot of effort into my posts and try to make my content meaningful for my followers.   I absolutely love it when I get comments that my readers found something relatable, helpful, or inspiring.  It’s what motivates me to push forward and continue blogging. 

Which post was your favorite to shoot?

My tie-dye post!  I do a lot of research into where I am going to shoot.  It’s easiest for me to shoot in my home town because grew up there and know it like the back of my hand.  I remembered I did this biology project in 9th grade and had discovered these really cool beach caves.  I thought it could be a cool place to shoot, and it ended up being amazing! I feel like the shot of me in the pink dress looks like I’m off in some far off foreign place, but really I’m just about a mile down the road from where I grew up.  In fact, the other outfit I shot for that post was taken only 500 feet away from the cave picture!  It’s amazing how when you can utilize your surroundings to produce such different effects.

What is your favorite piece in your closet? 

That’s a tough one! I have a denim jean jacket with stars on it from Pistola that is one of my favorite go-to pieces.  I think of my style as “California Cool” and I think it’s piece totally embodies that.  A basic jean jacket with a little bit of edge that looks effortless.  That’s what I try to achieve with my style.  I wear it all the time in the Summer at night when it gets chilly in Santa Monica.

Can you share your go-to fitness tip?

Challenge yourself, but enjoy yourself at the same time! I used to push myself to do HIIT classes, but would feel like I was going to throw up the entire class because it was so hard.  At the end I would just be happy it was over and I wasn’t suffering anymore! If you hate your workout, chances are you will eventually give up. Instead, find a workout that you enjoy.   I love barre and pilates so those are my core workout classes.  Each class I challenge myself to go a bit further or harder.   That’s what makes it rewarding and has me coming back!

Jacket : Missguided // Swim Suit : (similar) // Chain Belt : (similar) // Hoops : Sterling Forever

Interview with Esmeralda Bridget

I met up with Esmeralda to shoot after meeting her at the Bumble BFF event I posted about recently. (Score one for Bumble BFF!) We have quickly become friends and since she is a microblogger on Instagram, I wanted to interview her for my new blogger series! I love her style and she’s a total sweetheart! Follow her on Instagram @esmeraldabridget

 

 

 

 

 

1. What is your biggest blogging pet peeve?

I think I would say one of my biggest pet peeve has to be running out of time to shoot. Even if I get out early enough, I still have to find places to shoot, set up the camera on my tripod, change outfits depending on the location, then having to go back and forth to check if my lighting is right, pose, etc. So, basically I just wish I had more time before the sun set. Sometimes, I just stress out so much because instead of enjoying the shoot I’m think how I’m so pressed for time and that takes the fun out of the shoot and I don’t like how any of my photos turn out.

2. Do you see yourself growing your blog, or would you rather keep it a hobby?

I’d say that I would definitely like to grow my blog. I think a lot of people eventually want to turn their hobby into a full time. For years I thought to myself, once I have the opportunity to leave my full time job and pursue my hobby I would do it in a heartbeat. Unfortunately, as time as passed I want to say that realistic I would still like to have a regular 9-5 job or maybe just part-time only, But continue to have more days to go out and create content not just on the weekends.

3. Who are three of your favorite bloggers?

Ooh! That’s a tough one haha. Top of my head i will say Marianna Hewitt is for sure goals. Someone I aspire to be and she is so insightful and genuine. Encourages women to empower other women and I love that. Second Blogger is for sure Ashley Brooke. She’s so stylish and I love her attitude towards life. I started to follow her from the very start of her YouTube career and she’s grown so much it’s crazy! She deserves it and I absolutely love how she shows every side of her. From how she runs her business, life, what’s her process when styling outfits. I truly admire her and she’s the ultimate girl boss. My last Favorite Blogger is…. tough call but I’m going to go with Whitney Simmons. Yep. You’re wondering why I picked a Fitness Blogger but I love fitness and I love working out and wearing cute outfits for my workouts. She promotes positivity and teaches you to think of fitness as a lifestyle not just a hobby or something to punish yourself with. Whitney also went through a difficult time in her life and she turned to working out. That’s one of the reasons why I started to workout and eat clean. I hit a rough patch a few months back with just life and my blogging stuff and she got me out of that funk.

4. How would you describe your style?

I’ve gone though so many phases with my style. It’s definitely been tough to find me. I say this because for a while I let what my clothes kinda dictate me. Instead of thinking hey, I can pair this top with these jeans and those shoes and not feel like I was labeling myself into one category. Now, I see it as if I wanna wear grungy clothes one day or Clean and Polished the next who’s stopping me ? No one! It was a hard realization to come to that no one is judging me as hard as I am. I want to say my style is between like boho rocker chic and casual but yet feminine is the way I like to describe my style. Lately I’ve been trying to get more into dressing casual. Don’t get me wrong I love getting dressed up for shoots but sometimes the real me is jeans, a band tee, some boots and messy curls.

Time to talk about the look! I really hope my dad does not see this post because I was not supposed to wear these jeans until after Christmas. (They are a Christmas gift) But in all honesty, I have little self-control, and little other pieces to shoot! So I wore them only to shoot!

If I am being honest I feel like this outfit is missing one thing! I’m still not quite sure what.. I have my new statement belt, favorite hat, and I love a good flare. I think the white was too plain, which is weird because I am usually a sucker for a good white top/jean combo!

Boho is actually one of my favorite styles! I loved wearing this and I felt very “Show Me Your Mumu”/”free people and that definitely made me really happy!

Hat : Lack of Colors // Jeans : Free People // Sweater : Free People (similar) // Belt : Rebecca Minkoff (similar Concho Belt)

Q&A with LA Bloggers

I met up with some awesome blogger babes from LA and I had the idea to start a Q&A series to get to know more of your favorite bloggers! I asked them all the same four questions and below are their unique responses! Also, follow them on Instagram if you haven’t already! (and me of course which you definitely should be!)

Debby : @trynfinddebby https://www.trynfinddebby.com/

Alexa : @alexaabain http://alwaysalexa.com/

Ericka : @erickabernabe https://bernabella.com/

Alexis : @lexialcala http://alexisalcala.com/

Julia : @juliaroga

Anna : @annasweeney

Genie : @gallivantingbean https://gallivantingbean.blog/


1. What made you want to start blogging?

Ericka : I started my self titled blog Bernabella in January 2018 because I felt I needed a space to combine my two loves: photography + writing. Since I have a degree in Journalism and PR/Advertising, I felt that it was the right time to start my blog and showcase my work 🙂

Debby : I was getting over a break up and it was a creative outlet for me. It honestly helped so much because it led me to meet some amazing girls even if it was only through the internet! Crazy but thankful we live in a world that can connect you with complete strangers in a way you would normally not connect with even your neighbors!

Anna :  I honestly started creating “daily outfits” putting together a different outfit every day and posting its details it’s become a hobby of mine and has been fun to mix and match new and recycled pieces. It’s inspired me to take it further. I’ve noticed family and friends become so supportive and actually love what I do. I also love the fire that lights within me when I do what I do. I also just love the community, I love everything about fashion, I want to make it a full-time job someday. “If you love your job you won’t work a day in your life”.

Julia : I had a really analytical job coding and needed a creative outlet

Genie : I actually started blogging because my best friend was fashion blogging and she suggested that I start a travel blog. So it wasn’t at all my idea! I’ve traveled a lot and so many people ask me for travel tips. Consolidating them inside a website makes it easier to share haha.

2. What is your favorite trend of the moment?

Ericka : PLAID. I’m obsessed with plaid at the moment. It’s such a versatile pattern that’s wearable year-round

Debby : Fringe and Snakeskin!!! I’ve been eyeing some snakeskin booties! And also mustard yellow for some reason!!! Haha, I’ve always disliked the color yellow and all of a sudden, I can’t stop buying it now!

Anna : I’m obsessed with blazers, oversized shirts, biker shorts and bright colored heels. Easy go tos for me. Also two piece sets.

Julia :  Teddy bear coats

Genie : My favorite trend would have to be sneakers haha. I feel like that’s getting a bit overrated now. But I love comfortable shoes and I only ever wear boots or sneakers. So the sneaker trend is definitely working in my favor.

3. Who are a few bloggers you look up to?

Ericka : @taramilktea for travel inspiration and @xoxotsumi for her timeless sense of style

Debby : I love love love the content the following babes produce:
@howdoyouwearthat, @stephweizman, @jenkvieira, @thestyledseed, @claudiagraziano, @thefashionfraction
Anna : 100% @cassdimicco is my favorite fashion influencer/ blogger her style nails my style or what I wish it would be to the T I would literally trade my closet for hers and wear every single one of her outfits. She kills it every time. Also @desiperkins and @morganstewart I look to for a lot of my fashion and beauty inspo I absolutely love them and all their fits. A local blogger I’ve really been vibing with is @jessthrowiton she absolutely nails my style may be better than I do. Combo of all these women. My absolute favorite posts to see every day!
Julia :  Kyleecampbell and tezza
Genie : Aside from the big ones, Aimee Song, Chiara Ferragani. I look up to one of my blogger besties Julia from @juliaroga. Her editing skills are amazing! I also love following @andreeabirsan. Her photos always have this pop of red that’s to die for and she produces some interesting more abstract photo concepts too.

4. What’s your go-to beauty product?

Ericka : My go-to beauty product is the Lancome Advanced Genifique Youth Activating Serum. It’s a little pricey, but IT WORKS.

Debby : Oh my goodness!!! So hard to pick one but I would say SPF facial moisturizer and  mascara is my most favorite thing ever!

Anna : Go to beauty product has got to be my @maccosemetics lipsticks !! To be precise the shade viva la glam ii is my everyday wear and I wear it like chapstick on a frequent occurrence I will leave the house with my hair up and no makeup on but you better believe I’m wearing my lipstick lol. They’re also a great way to change up your makeup when you use different shades especially for someone like me who doesn’t really change up my makeup routine too much

Julia :  Not really a beauty product but nail grow by opi is my favorite product

Genie : Well first my go-to beauty brand is Kiehl’s. I use their ultra facial cleanser and sunscreen everyday. However, I’ve recently discovered green clean by farmacy and I’m totally hooked. It’s a balm makeup remover that’s super gentle. I love it because when I’m using it i don’t feel like I’m rubbing sandpaper on my face trying to get all my makeup off. It leaves my face clean and soft.

Bodysuit : Free People // Jeans : Levi’s // Boots : Forever 21 // Cardigan : Nasty Gal