3 LIFE LESSONS LEARNT FROM 3 YEARS OF BLOGGING

3 LIFE LESSONS LEARNT FROM 3 YEARS OF BLOGGING

“HONESTLY, I HAVE NO IDEA WHERE OR WHO I WOULD BE WITOUT MY BLOG AND MAN, HAS IT TAUGHT ME A THING OR TWO!”

July marked the 3rd year of Style Petal. The blog that survived the 3 previous ones before it. 3 years of rambles, outfits, probably too many coffee flat lays and spilling my thoughts onto the world. Many wonderful friendships, many incredible oppertunities and a few awkward ‘I don’t feel fancy enough to be here’ moments! It’s become some sort of a tradition to mark your blogs birthday, or ‘blogiversarry’ and why not? More and more people are grabbing the confidence to show the world their thoughts, dreams and passions and that’s bloody amazing! 

So I thought it was about time to celebrate my own little corner of the internet, because, well, I’m pretty proud of what it’s become and super excited to see where it’s heading! Next year I’m tempted to just organise a massive garden party for loads of lovely bloggers, to get together, make friends, inspire one another and just have fun! But for now, I thought I would share 3 life lessons that I’ve learnt through 3 years of blogging, because honestly, I have no idea where or who I would be without my blog and man, has it taught me a thing or two!

EVERYTHING WILL ALWAYS BE OKAY

 

In all walks of life, we encounter problems, struggles and worries. Here I talked about how to be a  positive person and one thing I always try to remember is that time heals all and one day, you’ll laugh about something you once stressed about! Everyone encounters stress at home, relationships and work but you will always be strong enough to get through it! (Can I be your own personal cheeleaders please?!) You’ve got this, YOU’VE ALWAYS GOT THIS! Sometimes I have occasions where I feel deflated, not good enough and like I don’t fit in, then I constantly doubt what I’m doing is good enough, if people enjoy it enough and then there’s that little thief of joy called comparison. Roll with the hard times, they inspire you to be the best you can be.

NEVER, EVER LET OTHERS OPINIONS EFFECT WHAT YOU DO

I wrote back in October all about why you should care less about what others think. That post was inspired by a few lovely souls who message me about my blog, instagram, etc, one of them being a lovely friend from college. She asked me how I overcame peoples judgement and plucked up the courage to start a blog. I can’t tell you how sad it makes me feel when I get asked questions like that, that theres people who actually put others down, make fun and laugh at those who want to blog. I know because it happened to me, petty girls I barely knew from my small town, a bit older, should have known better yet found some strange satisfaction from making fun. I can only feel sorry for these people and hope they find piece with whatever makes them act in such a way.

No matter how annoying and at times, crushing it was (it eventually stopped) if you want to do something – dance classes, die your hair, learn to sing, blog – don’t let anyone ever tell you or make you feel like you can’t. You could be the juiciest peach in the world and someone will still hate peaches. I remind myself of this anytime I doubt myself, my worth or worry about judgement. Throw yourself into everything you do with passion, love and soul. Life is too short t live any other way or let people hold you back.

DRESS AND LIVE FOR YOU AND ONLY YOU, ALWAYS!

I thank my parents for the way they raised me; I don’t know exactly what they did, but they instilled in me everything I live by today – to always do things for yourself and no one else. I’m a huge people pleaser, I’ll admit that and often forsake my feelings for others happiness. This said, I’m never willing to give up my passions  or sense of self for anyone. I’ve never dressed for the 18 year old guy I fancied at school, I’ve never dressed to fit in, done my makeup for others or worked a job to please someone.

If everything you do truly makes you happy and makes your soul sparkle, you’ve pretty much got the key to nailing life.Wear the crazy dress, the OTT shoes to the family BBQ, die your hair the rainbow and follow your dreams. It’s your life only, so what’s the pointing living it for someone else.

SHOP THE LOOK

I really hope you loved this one my beauts and that you took maybe a little something away from it! A HUGE thank you to every single one of you, whether you’ve been here for 3 years or 3 minutes, thank you for taking the time to read and share your thoughts and stories. 

If there’s anything you want to see at all from Style Petal, please do get in touch for a chap or pop me a message on Instagram! I’ll also be doing a little thank you giveaway when I reach my 1k milestone on Youtube to say thanks for your love! 1 or 100000 I value every single person who sits through my ramblings, so make sure you’re subscribed! 

As always you can tweet me @stylepetalblog, catch up on all my posts over on BLOGLOVIN or see my latest beauty and fashion buys and vlogs over on my YouTube channel!

Photography by Ben Kapur – shot at the beautiful No.11 Pimlico road (and my fave lunchin spot 😉 )

LATEST WATCH

How to get over bloggers block

How to get over bloggers block

Ironically, I sit here writing this, feeling really drained, ill,
tired, with no idea what to write

Ah, bloggers, block. Writers, block, artists block, just general, feeling a bit uninspired and no with idea where to start. Ironically, I sit here writing this, feeling really drained, ill, tired, with no idea what to write, despite a seriously extensive list beside me of ideas for times like this. It’s not often I get really bad ‘bloggers block’ but when I do, I feel totally and utterly stuck in a literary hole with no way to climb out.

 I really enjoy sitting down and writing my blog posts, I’ve found that since I’ve begun to write a lot more personally, you guys have really been able to relate, perhaps find it helpful and reach out to me with your thoughts and stories, which truly is the best. So when the writing wall hits and you have no idea how to power through, it can be really tough. Here’s how I tackle the dreaded bloggers block.

Change your environment up

As much as the organisational freak inside of me loves staying at my functional desk, sometimes I can become bored and repetitive, especially if I have bloggers block. Escape to a coffee shop, the garden, your sofa or make a pillow forte in your bed. Make yourself a happy space, get cosy and get stuck in. I love to light a scented candle, be in some comfy clothes, play a chilled out playlist and make myself a nice cup of coffee or herbal tea. Hell, you can even go crazy and get some snacks along for the ride! Enjoy being in the company of your thoughts and let the creative juices flow.

Create your blogging bible

If anyone has been watching my insta stories recently, you’ll know that I have more than a few note books always to hand. These are my blogging bibles and I wouldn’t be without them. I make lists anywhere and everywhere I can, arms lengths long of blog post ideas. This always helps to look at when it comes to writing a post. My blog posts usually come together two ways: 1. It will be a collab with a much loved, brand and we will generate the written content and imagery together, so that it flows and connects well, whilst conveying the campaign message, etc.

 Or 2. I snap my outfits up, or my fave products and the accompanying text will follow. Sometimes an outfit inspires a whole post, but sometimes I’m at a total loss of what to write about. This is where my lists are like gold, I can easily scan down my ideas to see what would suit the imagery I have. I didn’t have a ‘blog post ideas’ list a year ago and I genuinely have no idea how I functioned without it! I get inspired late at night, on a train, walking down the road – I need something to hand to jot my ideas down, notebook, phone, otherwise my ideas will probably disappear!

Surround yourself with inspiration

Pinterest, is probably one of my favourite ways to easily become inspired. I’m very triggered by imagery. Fashion, beauty, interiors, food – I have boards for everything which really helps me in pulling together ideas for something. Have a browse through your favourite blogs too, become inspired by peoples words and photographs – think to yourself ‘why do I enjoy reading this persons blog?’ – is it their style? Their voice? They aesthetic?

Think how you can emulate that feeling into your own blog. Inspiration and imitation are two different things however, so make sure your don’t blur the lines! (There’s actually a post coming on this subject soon!) Magazines are also great – I love drawing inspiration from the beautiful editorials and adverts in Vogue (I know, how cliche do I sound!) Books are also great – I found that ‘How to Be Parisian’ and ‘Love, Style, Life’ (two classic blogger loved books!) really helped me realise why I love to write and what I want people to gain from it! 

Make the most of your creative mind explosions 

Like I previously mentioned, I get inspired at very random times. Actually, usually very ANNOYING times (hello 2am wide eyes!) You know, that sudden rush of ideas, feeling so inspired and motivated you genuinely don’t have the time or space to write all your amazing ideas down! I used to continue along with this train of thought, thinking that I’ll write my ideas down ‘in the morning’ or ‘another time’. DON’T DO THIS. The likelihood is, you’ll forget half of it and be unable to pick up where you left off.

WRITE THAT GOODNESS DOWN whilst it’s there! Even if I means getting out of bed and scribbling in a notebook. Some of my best, blog posts have been written this way and actually makes the whole process so much easier! You have ready made content from the heart that would have taken so much longer to produce if you were to try and get yourself into that mindset forcefully. Roll with the brain explosions!

What I wore

Shirt – Burton (similar)

Denim – Topshop (similar)

Shoes – Public desire*

Sunglasses – Ray Ban

Bag – Debenhams

I hope you loved this post huns and I really hope it helped you guys in some way – I’d love to hear your top thoughts on how to overcome the dreaded bloggers block!

I’ve also got so much Spring style, goodness coming to my channel, so make sure you’re subscribed! 

As always you can tweet me @stylepetalblog, catch up on all my posts over on BLOGLOVIN or see my latest beauty and fashion buys and vlogs over on my YouTube channel!

Photography by Ben Kapur

Watch the lookbook
Reflections from my first ever Fashion Week

Reflections from my first ever Fashion Week


Ah Fashion Week. The Bi-Yearly pinnacle of the industry and one big occasion for your diaries. Whether you’re a blogger, buyer, designer, editor or just adore everything and anything fashion, it’s kind of a big deal. From reading blogs at the start of high school, through to starting my own, I’ve watched in awe as the fashion seasons pass, trends come and go and bloggers take over the streets. It’s been mesmerising watching the rise of bloggers, so much so that I’ve always dreamed of attending at fashion week, soaking up the atmosphere and absorbing all the insane street styles. I’ve always thought that Fashion Week was kind of what everything accumulated to when you’re a fashion blogger, the time to shine, schmooze your arse off and have a bloody good time. I didn’t really know what to expect, nor did I venture in with pre conceptions, just an open mind and a naive and silly choice of shoes. Here’s my reflections from my first fashion week and here’s hoping you find it useful, interesting, relatable or just entertaining!



“Nailing the perfect, fashion week ensemble is bloody hard. I still have no idea what my ‘style’ is. I just wear what I like and what I feel comfortable in ( apart from shoes, I always end up picking uncomfortable shoes because, well, I love them.) Don’t fear others judgement and don’t compare yourself to others. Do you and do it well!”



“Firstly, the struggle of dressing for fashion week is real.”

It sounds so ridiculously conceited, but I got back home the day before fashion week, no idea what to wear and tearing my hair out. The thing is, I’m a lover of spontenaity – I like to loosely plan outfits and then fully put something together in the spur of the moment, so that I can dress according to my mood, the weather and the general vibe I’m feeling that day! This is the first hurdle; people spend days, weeks, months even, pre planning their outfits and herein lied my problem, because I’m just not a pre planning kinda gal. Luckily, the babes at Very Exclusive were on hand to let me take this INCREDIBLE Needle and Thread jacket for a whirl – it was love at first site and added something fresh and unplanned to my look for Day 2 at LFW. Especially when you’re as inexperienced as me at Fashion Week, you can really let the whole ‘I’ve got to look amazing, but feel like myself but look like the BEST version of me all at the same time’ really get on top of you! I wrote here about how easy it is in this industry to compare yourself to others. I was adamant I wouldn’t do this and as long as I focussed on feeling good, staying true to myself and dressing for myself – I’d be fine.  I’m paired back, a little bit basic and love classic pieces. Street style and paparazzi material? Probably not, but that’s okay. Don’t go out of your comfort zone for the sake of a big Canon.



“It’s a huge contrast and mix of incredible, luxurious ‘pinch me’ moments and just the down right, unglamorous “

I’m definitely not speaking for everyone here, but I’m assuming that if you’re a really well established blogger, celebrity or socialite, then fashion week is going to be a hell of a lot more glam than your average Joe Prim. I’m not going to paint a facade and I’m definitely not afraid to tell you the more gritty details and reality of fashion week from my point of view. But I feel like that needs a whole new post, so if you’d like to see a comedic post or video about the perhaps, less glam aspects of FW, let me know because that would be hilarious and very interesting to put together! Although I have explained the highs and lows in my Vlog, which is coming to my channel soon, so head over and have a cheeky subscribe if you haven’t already! Reality check aside, I am still in love with Fashion Week and find the whole time so intriguing, inspiring and interesting! Personally, from actually experiencing it this year instead of watching from the sidelines (Twitter 😉 ) I feel like I’ve learnt so much more about what goes into fashion week and why it’s such an important time. You’ve got the parties, the champs on tamp and constant blow drys, but you also have the aching feet, changing on the streets (yes I kind of did) and sometimes, the isolation and feeling of not fitting in.



“Find yourself a fashion week buddy”

Buddy’s were great on school trips, endless banter and if you got lost you weren’t alone. Same applies to fashion week and MY GOD it would have been daunting if I didn’t have my girls with me! My fave Aussie, Emma was in town for FW and I’m now having severe separation symptoms! I spent all 3 of my FW days with her and I can’t tell you how much fun she made them! We laughed, moaned, ate and drank (and then tried to recover Sunday morning). On Saturday we met up with Tanya and Kristy for a red wine, fuelled dinner and it was the best! It’s sometimes difficult to make friends when you perhaps don’t see them much or even haven’t met them yet (here’s looking at you Insta friends!) ! A LOT of my working life is spent by myself, so it’s so refreshing to have a group of girls you can relate to and trust. Over the past year I’ve really formed some great friendships through blogging which makes me super happy! Having a Fashion Week buddy will not only mean you can feel more at ease in new situations, but you have someone to laugh with, help choose a wine (V. Important!)  take pictures and put up with your moaning because your shoes are destroying your feet! 



 

GET THE LOOK

Jacket – Needle & Thread (At Very Exclusive)

Top – Zara

Trousers – New Look (similar)

Boots – Next (similar)

Bag – Next (similar)



Watch my Fashion Week Vlogs!



I REALLY hoped you like my little reflection of my first Fashion Week – I’d love to know your thoughts, if you’ve been or if you’d love to go! I cannot wait to show you the vlog of my time this year so make sure you’re subscribed! 

As always you can tweet me @stylepetalblog, catch up on all my posts over on BLOGLOVIN or see my latest beauty and fashion buys and vlogs over on my YouTube channel!

Photography by Ben Kapur


Why Blogging should be a respected career

Why Blogging should be a respected career


Over the years, blogging has been rapidly on the rise and with it, more and more people (understandably) want in on the action. From someone who has read blogs ever since they can remember, it’s been truly mesmerising to watch and has fuelled us millennials with a undeniable sense that anything and everything is possible. I will forever believe I can achieve anything if I put my mind to it and I have the internet to thank for that. Naive? Perhaps, but I wouldn’t want to be any other way. I think it’s so incredible that people are able to build something out of nothing, have their say and express themselves in such a relatable and inspirational way. As always, with something new and slightly out of the ordinary, comes doubt and uncertainty. It’s a totally new and unexplored world; there are no qualifications, no courses, no how to’s and no key to success. I previously wrote in this post, 5 things I’ve learnt from blogging, about the struggles of peoples misconceptions and the task of gradually making an income from what used to be, a hobby.



“The thing is, people who don’t blog or are kind of new to the whole concept, sometimes don’t understand exactly it is what we do – and that’s totally understandable!”

Controversially, others like to voice their opinions about our pay and compensation, perhaps not quite understanding why we’re paid and why people want to pay us. We’re paid for a reason – because our voices are valued, our opinions are valued and that has an influence over people, so much so that some bloggers can simply mention a product and it will sell out just like that. Now personally, I think that’s bloody remarkable and takes a lot of power – power that has rightfully been earned through years of hard (and free!) work, mistakes, cringe worthy pictures, being taken advantage of and a sprinkling of the odd internet troll (who can sometimes be closer to home that you think.) I also think, if you’ve managed to show enough passion for something, so much so that people go and buy it – of course a commission is well deserved! We also really have the ability to reach out to others – share our stories, our struggles and lessons learnt, in hopes of it helping others in the same boat. This builds a sense of community and can be so comforting to people going through a difficult time. There’s now a way to reach through to people, to really connect, engage and inspire past the pages of a magazine or advert on the side of a bus. That’s not to say they’re redundant, it’s such a different, more personal approach to things speaking to someone though a heartfelt post or video. 



“The way I like to explain blogging, to anyone new to the concept, is that we’re essentially like a new age magazine. Except we’re a one man, multitasking, 21st century wonder who not only create, build and write, but also photograph, review, invest and put our bare souls out there for the world to see.”



I’m more than often asked, ‘but how do you earn a living from it?’

Sometimes this can be an interesting and exciting topic to explain and other times, people’s tone can become a little patronising. Magazines have advertorials, paid or sponsored articles and so do blogs. You wouldn’t critique that in paper form so why hate on a blogger for whacking ‘AD’ on a post? Hell, I stick that ‘AD’ on with a hell of a lot of pride, because I’ve worked for years, invested thousands and networked my absolute arse off for it. For brands you have grown up with and loved to approach YOU, because they like YOUR work is truly remarkable and should be commended. I don’t think some people understand how difficult it really is to build an online presence from thin air, that said, my family and friends are really supportive and astounded at what I do – it’s different and they’re amazed at how after years of graft, a hobby became a career right in front of their and my, eyes. For someone who hasn’t been around that, I can understand perhaps how they assume it’s ‘not a real job’ or ‘not hard work’, because they have had no insight into it apart from a few pictures of a nice handbag. You would never ask a magazine editor, photographer, or journalist to work for free for years, so don’t expect someone who does all of the above and more to do so either. As much as I would love to pay a house deposit in lipsticks, it ain’t gonna happen.



“All I would ever want from the critics, the dubious and the doubtful, is to open your mind and have a little compassion.”

I would never dream of undermining anyones job, no matter what you do. I’ve slaved away working a 9-5 job on my feet, then running to another job from 6-12am, to then come home exhausted, trying to find time to blog and get up at 4am on my day off to drive to a location for filming. You don’t see the past, the present of a bloggers life, you might just see one picture, one post, or one tweet. You don’t see the nitty, gritty, having a full on, sobbing, pitty party for yourself because someone has decided to throw abuse at a harmless selfie. You don’t see the endless list of part time jobs we do in order to pay the bills, hoping that one day we can thrive in a job we adore, or the constant battle of deciding if it’s a viable career or not, or whether we should just ‘stick to something normal’. Bloggers are hard working, talented, respected and deserve just as much respect as any other job. It’s evolving, it’s new, it’s exciting and they’re quite possibly, taking over the world. If you’ve ever doubted, or wondered how much goes into a blog, I urge you to give it a go. It’s fun, empowering, anyone can do it and you might just love it.



Shirt – Burton (similar)

Leggings – H&M (similar)

Boots – Next (similar)

Coat – Ebay (similar)

Bag – Debenhams



I’d absolutely love to hear your thoughts on this topic – whether or you’re a blogger or not, read blogs for years or have no idea how they work – get in touch and get involved!

As always you can tweet me @stylepetalblog, catch up on all my posts over on BLOGLOVIN or see my latest beauty and fashion buys and vlogs over on my YouTube channel!

Photography by Ben Kapur


How to choose a blog shoot location

How to choose a blog shoot location

It goes without saying that your blog shoot location is a pretty big deal. Whether you’re a fashion, beauty, food or parent blogger, where you take your pictures matters. We all have our preferences and styles, whether you want a marbled background for your product shots, a pastel kitchen to show off your latest recipes  or those white houses in Kensington creeping in the background of your outfit shots. The longer I’ve been blogging, the more I get an eye for the type of feel and style I want to portray. I’ve always been a bit of a perfectionist and myself and Ben have tirelessly walked for hours in search for the perfect blogging location. This is sometimes an unfulfilling journey and especially now that we’ve moved, we’re scouting the area for fresh locations! Whatever you’re aesthetic, I’m chatting about how to choose a blog shoot location!

Work with what you have

Because let’s be honest; Unless you live in Kensington or within super easy reach, it’s probably not going to be attainable to always take your blog shoots there. If I’m ever in the area I will most definitely make the most of the stunning houses and snap up those outfit shots, but I won’t bust my balls making it my one and only location. We used to take a 15 minute drive and a car full of clothes to shoot, with me awkwardly changing in the back, hoping there wasn’t anyone that liked to peruse their binoculars out their window nearby. Even this was a bit of a faff at times when you ambitiously wanted to shoot 6 outfits (I’ve only ever got to 4 outfits!) I’ve learnt to work with what I have close by as this makes life so much easier, especially if you’re super busy! Alternatively, if you’re heading towards an area you like the look of, bring your camera along and snap your outfit up! If you’re on holiday, staying away or just around your hometown, have a wander and make the most of the environment and scenery around you – whether that’s the blue sea of Santorini, the snowy Alps or an english country road! Me and Sophie (@silkandstrands over on insta!) shot these in Covent Garden as we were both around that day and decided to shoot. Be spontaneous too. See a nice wall? Stunning architecture? Get your camera or phone out and have a photo sesh – these can sometimes be the best shots! Don’t feel like you have to have the same background every time, be confident to step out of your ordinary and try something new. 

“It goes without saying that your shoot location is almost, if not just as important as what you wear! Just like you’ve worked towards compiling an outfit together, you need to find the perfect backdrop to compliment it!”

Figure out your style

Colourful, textured, grungy, simplistic or vibrant. Determine what kind of look you’re going for, this will help you scout out what you like. I’ve always like my shots to have an urban feel so tend to go for built up areas and streets, as I’ve always loved street style photography. I also like my backgrounds to be fairly minimalist, fresh and bright looking, so that my outfit will stand out. However, I loved how the shots with the telephone boxes came out – something I wouldn’t normally go for as I would have assumed they would be too brash and in your face. We headed to 3 areas to see how the shots came out, each having slightly different backgrounds, lighting and an overall, slightly different vibe. Once you’ve established what you like, you can even start googling or asking around for ideas – for example, period houses, car parks, abandoned buildings, parks, etc. Build up an idea of the kind of thing you’re looking for and head out for a nice walk or drive! I always love city shooting as it’s what inspires me most, each street having a different personality!

Trial, error and experiment

I’m quite, really stubborn and am always adamant that ‘this place will be perfect’ or ‘no, that would look crap!’. I’ve learnt (and am still learning!) to experiment more and trying not to have any preconceptions about what will work and what won’t. Follow your instinct and if you’re drawn to somewhere, try it out! If a street or building inspires you – shoot! Then try, and try and try again until you figure out what works. There’s nothing worse than spending a day shooting, to only get home to edit on your laptop and hate the images. We always review our shots after we’ve started, to see if angles need to change, figure out the lighting or if we need to move. I’d rather have tonnes of images to trawl through than not enough and not liking them. We kept moving around for this shoot to experiment, hence the different backgrounds. Reflecting on these it’s given me ideas for future shoots and what kind of tone I want the photos to have! This isn’t just for outfit shoots – it could apply to flat lays, selfies or interior shots. It’s a creative outlet and you need to learn what you like and how to achieve that in a shot. Prep, move things, change things up, see what works so that at least you have some material to play around with! 

Top – Zara

Culottes – Matalan

Shoes – Quiz*

Coat – Debenhams 

Bag – Have Best

I really hope you guys liked this post – finding locations is never easy! There’s never going to be a short cut or key to the perfect location, but I thought I’d share what has helped me along the years! I’d love to hear any of your tips on finding a location! Which one of our locations here do you prefer?

These were shot by the gorgeous Sophie, who you can catch here! All my other shoots are done by the one and only Ben, who you can check out here!

I always love hearing from you guys, follow all my blog posts over on BLOGLOVIN or catch up with my rambles on my channel! You can also ask me questions or say hey over on Snapchat ‘style petal’ Happy shooting loves!

5 Things I’ve learnt from blogging

5 Things I’ve learnt from blogging

“This afternoon, whilst sat at my desk, editing my latest video for my channel, I had a sudden realisation. It’s been a month since we moved to London and for that month I’ve somehow transitioned into becoming a full time blogger.”

This afternoon, whilst sat at my desk, editing my latest video for my channel, I had a sudden realisation. It’s been a month since we moved to London and for that month I’ve somehow transitioned into becoming a full time blogger and actress. The two have been my priority and passions for years and although having another job on the side to help save and pay bills never distracted me from my dreams, it certainly meant I had slightly less time to spend on them. The freedom this last month has given me has mean’t that I haven’t been wishing away each day and I’m truly spending my time doing what I love, which is remarkable and a huge milestone for me! As you know, I’ve read blogs ever since I was about 12/13, however Style Petal was born on a hot, July day back in 2014, after a sequence of terrible, pointless (and hilarious!) blogs that accumulated over the years. I like to think that through my years of reading, writing and creating blogs I’ve learnt a fair amount along the way and after today’s realisation and the exciting past weeks of meetings and events, I thought I’d share some of the 5 things I’ve learnt from blogging. 

1. Your Blog is a constant work in progress

You’d be silly to think that you can start a blog and be perfectly happy with every aspect enough to never change, grow or progress. I started out getting my mum, sister and boyfriend to begrudgingly take pictures of me in the middle of a Devonshire street on my samsung galaxy S3. Farmers and old people would drive past and wonder why I was prancing around half naked in March. Thankfully, times have changed, as has the photography and sartorial choices. However, my boyfriend still does take my photos, but it has become more of a passion than a burden. I’ve always strived to improve my blog in all aspects; photography, written content, design and social engagement. I remember being so happy with my blog design a year or so ago, but nowadays, it couldn’t be further away from what it used to look like after – and that’s okay! As we grow, learn and experiment, so will your blog. If it just stayed the same, it would become stale, dated and irrelevant. Embrace changes, the good and the not so good. Who cares if you look back and laugh at yourself, that’s the beauty of being human.

2. It’s a lot more than prancing around taking pictures

I’ve just about gotten used to people’s looks of confusion when it comes to explaining blogging. Lots of my friends and relatives are still confused by how you actually class it as work and not ‘faffing around on your computer.’ It’s a fully fledged career and with it, like any other job, you have the highs, lows and hours of blood, sweat and tears. There’s no masterclasses, courses or tuition. Therefore we must coach ourselves to be capable photographers, networkers, computer whizzes and social network gods. I have spent more time than I would like to admit watching Lightroom, Affinity and countless other videos on editing, coding and website design. No one sees this and no one sees the crap that sometimes comes with putting yourself, your style and your bare soul online. My blog would be a sad mess if it wasn’t for my dad. He’s a photographer and website designer and has had me contacting him a worried mess, all hours of the night asking ‘why is this happening’ ‘why can’t I put my logo here’. He’s also probably one of the few people that understands the hard work that goes into growing, creating and maintaining a blog. It’s easy for people to assume all I do is take pictures of me wearing free clothes. Wouldn’t it be fab if it was that simple. But then again nothing is worth having if you didn’t work damn hard for it.

3. Free stuff is awesome but won’t pay a mortgage deposit

I remember, fondly, my first few collaborations. The excitement as an email dropped into my inbox. The feeling that someone actually admired what I did and wanted to work with me. I still get this exact feeling every time my email notification pings, however I’m a lot more picky than I used to be. It’s forever surprising to hear how companies are so casual about their blatant exploitation of bloggers. The endless list some ‘campaigns’ contain, all accumulating to days of hard work to absolutely no benefit of the blogger apart from, perhaps, some crap you’d use once. This is, of course, a sweeping generalisation but at the same time, sadly true. Luckily the majority of companies I have worked with are incredible, I adore them and have also usually used their products for years beforehand. In any other job you’d be insane to work for days, weeks even, for free with absolutely no benefit for yourself and I used to be a total sucker for this. You have to know your self worth and if the payment or compensation is small, weigh up the pro’s and con’s of the campaign. If you love the brand and want to build a relationship then great! If it really isn’t worth your precious time and you get absolutely nothing from it – politely decline. If clothes were currency, I’d be buying everyone houses, but unfortunately this isn’t the case. 

4. Being nice will get you far

This is something I’ve always lived by and has always proved to be a good mantra. People will remember you, like you and want to work with you if you’re pleasant to be around. I want people to feel positive and happy when they’re around me and you’ll often find me making fun out of myself or chatting away to try and put people at ease. If you’re someone who can’t often make events or meetings then fear not, because being a sparkly ray of sunshine online will also do you countless favours. Interact, compliment and share the blogging love. It’s a good way to network online and you could make someones day just by one nice comment. Email skills are also essential! I can’t re iterate enough how important being able to email in a timely and friendly, yet professional manner is. I almost, instantly, don’t take any emails seriously that don’t address me personally and it’s a cardinal sin to spell someones name wrong (it isn’t hard). People will appreciate that personal touch, as do we bloggers. If a brand or company can’t take the time to even figure out my name or what I write about, it’s probably not going to be a collaboration match made in heaven.

5. You need to bare some soul to be relatable.

Blogging is a whole new level of marketing and advertising. People read blogs and consequently buy things people have talked about because they trust these people and have a lot of respect for them. In order to grow a loyal and engaged audience, you need to become relatable. I’m not going to relate to someone who writes one sentence about why they like a scarf. Personally, for me, I look for personality in a blog. I genuinely take an interest in this persons life and their opinions and as much as I love looking at pictures, I love to read their thoughts and views and see them for who they are. This may not be for everyone and I understand some people prefer to see beautiful imagery rather than beautiful text, but eye catching content is what really makes someone stand out for me. Obviously you won’t appeal to the whole world, because I don’t think my grandma cares what foundation I’m wearing, but by showing people the real you it will attract like minded souls. Be real, be honest and be funny. I love retelling unfortunate fashion fails and sharing my past, I find that’s what makes people want to interact with you and spark conversation! 

Top – New Look 

Denim – Topshop 

Handbag – Gucci at Uncloset

Boots – Quiz*

I really hope you guys enjoyed this post – I had so much fun putting it together and really wanted to reflect on my blogging journey so far! I would love to hear your thoughts, so make sure to snap me at ‘style petal’ or tweet me here! 

You can also catch me on BLOGLOVIN or see what I’m chatting about over on my channel here!