The Answers: Fashion and Blogging

Jul 22, 2015

Lets continue on this answer train shall we? The bulk of the questions kind of fell into two categories, fashion and blogging. So this post might be a little long, but these two things pretty much intertwine themselves in my life.


What did you do in fashion before becoming a stay at home mom?

So, I started working in retail when I needed a second job after getting married and Chris was deployed. I worked at a horse tack and feed store, and then worked at Marciano by Guess as well. I had always had a huge obsession with clothes, and getting other people dressed. But I went to private school my whole life, so that didn't lend me very much creative freedom. Once I started working in retail I really liked working with the visual team more than I liked sales. So that is where my primary focus went. I worked my way up with Marciano to a store co-manager and a visual manager. I got to work early mornings and do floor changes, and also work more with the district and regional managers on incoming products for our store. I absolutely loved it!! When Chris got home from deployment I quit working to spend all my time with him and figure out our next move in life. We ended up in Scottsdale, AZ and I started working for Anthropologie as a visual manager. Working for Anthro was an amazing experience. Every store is unique because they give their visual teams creative freedom on concepts. My goal was to move into store merchandising and buying and as I was making my way on that path, Ace come along and spending all my time with him was too good to pass up!

Do you have a budget (monthly) for clothes, makeup, etc.? 


I'll give you the real deal holyfield answer. No, I do not have a budget set in stone. I do all the bills and everything in the house, so the bill chart is filled in and checked off by yours truly. Chris can always be overheard saying "happy wife..happy life" so he has never side-eyed me on the shopping. He trusts I won't spend all the kid's college funds, maybe just half (I kid I kid). Then I started blogging, from that I started making a little bit of money for myself. It didn't feel right to take any money out of our joint account for purchases when I could easily buy myself things. So that is where we find ourselves now. If I make money from the blog, I use it to sponsor other blogs, pay for blogging related things, and then on buying new clothes, makeup, what have you. What I spend changes month to month depending on what I have going on. Some months there is more, others there is less or maybe none. But for me it keeps me accountable to spend what I make, since this blogging is really "my" thing. Even though Chris is 100% supportive. 

Favorite makeup line?

Oh man, this is sooo hard to narrow down because I feel like I use so many different products. But right now I am really loving a lot of products from Lorac, from their bronzers to lipsticks, just great quality! I will forever be in love with Loreal mascaras. MAC brushes, and Urban Decay eye shadows. 

How do you get ready with four kids?

This is where I create my own chaos. If I know we have to go somewhere or we have errands to run that day, I do things in many many stages. I will get up before everyone so that I can do my hair, whether that be curling, braiding, or whatever. Usually by the time the kids gets up I will have their clothes laid out for the day, and breakfast options for them. While they eat I will put my makeup on. Once they are done I will get them ready, feed the baby, and get myself dressed last. I try to always have my diaper bag stocked at all times so I can just grab it and go. If not, I keep a small stash of things in my trunk. The kids are pretty used to the fact that I take time to get ready. So most of the time they hang out in my room with me as I do it. Not to say there aren't days where everyone is just over it, and I end up running out in jeans and a sweatshirt. So....one beauty routine step at a time. 
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I feel like there were so many questions about blogging! Let me just be sooooo clear, I am NO expert in this. I genuinely have no idea what I'm doing. I just take it as it comes. I have been such a fan, and reader of blogs for so long that I feel like I know what I like and don't like. The takeaways, and whatnot. 

What category would you put your blog in?

Great question! I have no idea. I mean I guess it could lean toward lifestyle? But maybe not even that. Possibly, life & style? Can that be a category? When I first started thinking about a blog I thought I would go full on fashion blogging. But I remember telling Chris that that is just not realistic to my life. I started blogging right after having Avalon. Three kids, and stay at home mom shenanigans does not equal everyday glamour. So busting out outfit posts would just be a lie. I always felt that fashion would work it's way in somehow, but it had to be organic. I am a mom first and foremost, and an admirer of style and fashion. 

How do your find time to blog? What is your routine?

Again....not real sure. (Don't I suck at this?) I mean, I do have a calendar that keeps me on track with sponsored posts, and I build from there. I always kind of have an idea of what I want to talk about. Usually three out of five posts during the week are planned out. The others are just kind of what is going on in our lives. I blog at night when the kids are asleep, or early morning before they are all up. When Chris is home on the weekends, he usually takes the reins while I edit pictures. I try not to sit at my computer during the day. I do all the social media shiz while breastfeeding, since I'm sitting there for a little bit anyway. 

How do you increase viewership? 

I am a very very small blog in the big bad blogging world. Like I'm tiny! Some days I'm pretty sure that my mom is the only one clicking over here. So I have no get quick click answer. I feel like you have to stay true to what you know, and people with either relate or not. But for the most part, if you are putting yourself out there and trying to connect with people, they will do the same. Find linkups to be apart of, that is a great way to bring people to your blog. Find your favorite blogs, big or small and sponsor them. Guest post! If you really like a blog and feel like you connect with the author of that blog, shoot them an email about working together on a post. There are no rules when it comes to blogging, but there is a fine line between liking another bloggers post, and then mirroring that post on your blog. Give credit where credit is due. That could be finding a great beauty product from a blog you read, link it. If you like a post idea that you saw on a blog, say that and give that blog credit. I feel like blogging is about the community, so build one of your own. One thing I have found is that bloggers are pretty badass when it comes to helping one another out. Leave comments. Genuine comments, not just "great post!". Engage with people, socialize on different social media outlets. Everyone and their mom has a blog these days. so you have to let yours be known. Be your own cheerleader!

Get on social media! If you have personal accounts think of starting an account for your blog on twitter, instagram, facebook....the list goes on. Also pinterest is a great way to drive traffic to your blog. Try and pin your images along with others everyday. 

How do you get sponsorship opportunities? 

Okay, again I have no true blue insight. And many times I sit and think...these people don't really want to work with my little mommy blog do they? But, you really have to find your voice when it comes to blogging. Be YOURself, what works for me, or for another blogger may not work for you. Carve out your own niche. And I feel like you have to be authentic. People can see right through the blogs that just throw up a post for the sake of doing it. Be specific, take the time to edit pictures. Whether you are doing fashion and beauty, food blogging, travel, then really hone in on your skills. Throw out your best features, your favorite products, build a post around your beauty routine. Whatever it is, quality over quantity. If you can commit to two or three really great posts a week, then do that! Don't throw out five half assed posts because you feel like you have to post everyday.

I am a super small blog, but I feel like I have had some great opportunities to work with some really amazing brands. BUT, don't say yes to the first opportunity that comes your way, as exciting as it may be. Make sure it fits your blog and your brand. Learn to say no, and then the right fit will come along. Look for brand partnership companies, Tap Influence is a great one, Collectively, Weave Media, Pollinate Media Group, Collective Bias. Many of these companies have a minimum page view requirement, so if you don't have google analytic's hooked up to your blog yet, do that. You will more than likely be asked about your monthly page views, and sometimes your payment is based off of that as well. 

I want to say also that, I know all the sites out there on blogging say numbers numbers numbers!! And while numbers play a big role I'm sure, I feel like they aren't everything. Your content is key! And I totally get that many people blog as an outlet and have no interest in it turning into anything more. I too think that is great! I happen to read many many blogs that have zero interest in monetizing. But if you do want something more, then treat your blog like something you would want to read as well. 

Who takes all your pictures?

My wonderfully hilarious photographer is none other than my husband Chris. He has zero experience, but he loves taking pictures. I have taken some online photography classes, so I usually know what settings I want my pictures done in, what lens I want to use, and then he just points and snaps snaps snaps, while saying things like, you look mad, you look constipated, you're really pale, there is a biker behind you move to the left! 

What kind of camera do you use?

I use a Canon Rebel SL1. Not anything high speed. What I have found is that my camera has the functions that I want, it is then up to the type of lens to deliver. So I went from using the kit lens it came with, to a 50mm f/1.2 lens for my portrait shots, and an 85mm f/1.8 for outfit posts. I still use the lens my camera came with when we travel. I am not a camera expert by any means! I am just starting to get comfortable with all the manual settings on my camera. I know I will outgrown it as I love taking pictures, but for now, it is good. 


I am not sure if that was at all helpful, or even answered those questions entirely. Or if it just created more questions in people's minds. Haha! And if you even made it through this whole post I am sending you a virtual high five!!

10 comments:

  1. Wahhh! Every time you post about your visual jobs it makes me miss working visuals. I ALMOST want to go working retail. And then I remember the 4am days and those occasional weekends.

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  2. 1. You're adorable 2. You're Super Woman and 3. I'm totes jealous you worked for Anthro doing what you did. Like so jealous.

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    1. Girl...you are one to talk, you are always lookin so put together!!

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  3. I am so impressed by how much you accomplish (hair, bfast prep, blogging, etc) before the kids get out. My son is my alarm clock and I have used the excuse "my son slept in" as a reason why I'm walking into work an hour late. The idea of being productive BEFORE he wakes up just blows my mind! So impressed!

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  4. Loved this post and it answered some of my blogging questions. I have a super tiny blog and I am always curious how people get more readers to come to their blogs. What are some of your favorite linkups?

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    1. I am so glad that you liked it! And found it a little bit helpful ;) Here is a HUGE list of link ups http://thefoleyfam.com/link-parties there are so many to be apart of!!

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  5. I love that Chris takes all the photos! :)

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  6. I can not drag myself out of bed before the kids right now, I'm hoping to once school comes around but it's SO hard! lol I usually put my makeup on in the car just because I need everyone contained and the light is amazing!

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  7. I am loving these posts! I feel like I'm learning so much about you and here when you asked for questions I was like nope I know her! Some people are so creative. I find blogging advice fascinating no matter how you slice it. You've got it going on! And I feel like so many people could learn from how you get ready in the morning. It's not rocket science! Haha

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