STYLE BLOGGER & FASHION STYLIST
Wow… what a journey! I am so grateful for the opportunities and lessons I have learned over the last 5 years as a style blogger and fashion stylist! I am happy to celebrate this month the conception of Corner Curl Girl! Stay tuned, every Monday in January for my lessons and features of Grumpy Panda Photography photos of my very first train ride (lol)! Today, I share 2 of my biggest first year challenges.
Think through what content you will produce before creating your blog name.
First, I want to begin by sharing that I had no intentions of being a fashion blogger. I began my blog under the name “Corner Curl Girl” in 2012. As a very neat and professional hoarder (honesty is key), I wanted to keep everything I owned which included the memories of what I deemed to be great outfits. I also wanted to keep track of the books that I was reading at the time. A blog was a free way to track these things and this is how I came up with the name. “Corner” represented where I would be reading the books in my home. “Curl” represented my new natural hair journey. “Girl” represented the stylish and classy side of me. Thus the name Corner Curl Girl…
Can I tell you that I wish I could rename my blog now with no problem? LOL.
I had no idea that the blog would evolve or that people would actually be interested in reading it! Many people become tongue tied in trying to say the name because of my love for alliteration and rhyme. Also, my why for naming the blog the way I did no longer applies to the content. However, the name stuck (branding… and I didn’t know it at the time) and many remember it so I have to keep it!
If I could rename this blog now, I think it would be called something like “Regal Rose” (there goes that alliteration again…) to express the idea of being a queen, classy and modest. Or I would use another name that I go by, the “Unbothered Queen” as I confidently take on the challenges of fashion and life. But, Corner Curl Girl it is…
Do your research and be inspired.
I started my blog on Blogspot, which seemed to be host site most bloggers used. This caused my initial blog to look novice because there were too many colors and designs in the background, which took the focus away from my ensembles. I round change the theme based on what I liked personally versus what readers would appreciate visually. My first website address was too long: http://www.cornercurlgirl.blogspot.com. Whew honey, not cool! But I just wanted to host my site free.
Do me a favor: BUY your domain name. Please and thank you!
I eventually ended up restarting my blog about 3 years later on WordPress. The reason, because everybody in the blogging world was doing it, lol. I did find that the templates looked more professional and more like a website versus a blog.
While this blog started as a new year resolution to keep track outside of journal books, about three months into consistently sharing my daily outfits (which were mostly school appropriate as I am also a teacher), I began getting comments from other bloggers. I was ecstatic that people actually responded to what I posted because I wasn’t really posting it for them (remember this was supposed to be my personal online journal, LOL). I would hear consistently from the same people so I began looking at their blogs and commenting too.
While I considered my style to be cute, it was not yet at the chic level. Based upon my research, I had poor quality photos (I started with my cell phone and I wasn’t #TeamiPhone, lol), the wrong poses and no idea what the current trends were. I will admit I compared my blog to those in my new community. While I am a strong advocate for not comparing yourself to others, this was a comparison that I needed to make in order to make improvements.
By the end of the year, the photos got a little better. Not excellent, but better. LOL! This was my most liked and commented on photo of my first year!
After scouring the Internet I eventually upgraded my camera, began editing my photos for clarity and I attempted to wear ensembles that people could actually find or mimic. After all, the point of a fashion blog is to inspire your audience. If everything I wore was outdated no one would be inspired nor would they be able to find the style that I was showcasing. Don’t get me wrong, I do not always or often follow current trends. Yet it is important to infuse some of them in order to keep your blog current. I mean, I could at least wear the color of the season, LOL…
Once I started making the improvements and upgrades to what I posted, I noticed an increase in the comments and views on my blog. I was stoked!
To further my fashion professional development, I joined online fashion communities and bookmarked my favorite fashion bloggers. My all time go to bloggers were Style Pantry (CA) and Skinny Hipster (DC) at the time as their hair and clothes were always on point! These ladies were definitely my fashion inspirations over the past few years. I have added more inspirations since and now have a community of chic women that I confer with. Shout out to my fashion blogger besties, Teena (Simply Kris or formerly known as Fashion for Breakfast, TX), Taliah (Fashion Was Here, MD) and Jennifer (Comme Coco, DC)!
What challenge(s) did you experience in your first year of blogging? How did you overcome the challenge(s)?
If you are starting a blog, what challenge(s) are you facing?
Corner Curl Girl