Tag Archives: Blonde in the District

Baby- it’s cold outside and finally feeling a little Christmassy! Kendall and I are doing Georgetown Glow tonight and then we both have family coming in for a very special weekend. On Sunday, we’re getting a betrothal blessing from my hometown church in Olney and then one of my bridesmaids’ family is hosting a bridal luncheon for me. We finally have our own little tree up and decorated, but I can’t wait to see my parents’ house because my mom does it so nice.

Merry Christmas Happy Holidays Digital Print

Lately on The CaroLøve:

If you’re around this weekend, head to Georgetown to shop with a cause at the AerieREAL Pop-Up Tour with my girl Sarah!

Take a peek at some of my current Aerie faves!

I just checked my Spotify Wrapped (basically a rundown of what I listened to this year) and I was not surprised in the least by my stats. But if you want to go further back in time with your music, say, the day you were born, check out the Nostalgia Machine.

You may have seen the little ornament I got Kendall for our tree this year- a perfectly personalized little red Christmas car from The Pine And The Poppy. I’m not sure how I started collecting Christmas cars, but it’s totally a thing now. These are just a few other little Christmas car collectables I’ve found.

I love not-perfectly-matched bridesmaids but what do you think about mismatched groomsmen? via Southbound Bride

Jennifer was wearing THE CUTEST earrings on her Instagram this week! Find them in 4 colors at J. Crew!

Dani had two posts I want to share with you this week: Gifts for Crazy Cat Ladies (where I took her picture) + The BITD Local DC Gift Guide (where she mentions my Zazzle shop!)

Sales this weekend:

  • Saks OFF 5th — Friends and Family, up to 70% off through 12/12.
  • MyTheresa — Sale, now up to 60% off
  • Net-a-Porter — Take up to 50% off.
  • Saks — Take up to 40% off at the Designer Sale. Valid through 12/11.
  • Macy’s — Take 30% off at the Friends  & Family Sale with code FRIEND. Valid through12.11.
  • SSENSE – Take up to 60% off.
  • MATCHESFASHION.COM — Take up to 50% off Fall/Winter styles.
  • Intermix — Extra 30% off sale.
  • Madewell — Take 20% off your entire purchase or 30% off when you spend $200+, with code OHWHATFUN, through 12/11.

Have a wonderful weekend!

 

SignatureFont72

SocialIconSmall_Twitter SocialIconSmall_Instagram SocialIcon_Small_facebookSocialIconSmall_Pinterest SocialIconSmallBloglovin' 
The above post may contain affiliate links and I may receive compensation if you click on any of the above links and/ or make a purchase from those links. Opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that I love!




Have you been reading these blogs and feeling inspired? A lot of people start getting the blogging bug by seeing some totally high-quality content out there, such as Dani (Blonde In The District) who has been instrumental in the Bubbles + Bloggers scene here. But it’s only one side of the life of a blogger. A lot of people look at the glamorous side of blogging and think they can do it too, and yes, anybody can do it, but it’s about having the tenacity to push through with these things. There have been some bloggers out there like Zoella who have been instrumental in the blogging side of fashion for the younger audience. And it’s great to start thinking about getting yourself a pursuit or a career that you are genuinely excited about, a lot of people roll their eyes at the prospect of leaving school and falling into a job which, let’s face it, is going to be the height of tedium! So, it’s not surprising that you want to follow your dream and get blogging and get yourself out there. But how is this done?

Kraft Blogger Notebook

The Very Start…

The thing about picking a totally awesome blog is that you have to go from the heart. This means beginning with writing about that you actually care for. When it comes to picking, what they call content, a lot of bloggers say they will write about anything, but this isn’t the best way forward. The best thing for you to do when you are setting up a blog is to go with what you are really passionate about. This may be something like fashion, but what parts of fashion are you really passionate about? Are you really keen on the summer styles, or does it all interest you? It doesn’t have to be that, so many people love music, so what do you like? You could like Justin Bieber, or you could like acid jazz, it doesn’t matter! The important thing is right at the very start it’s about picking what you are really passionate about, and getting that out there, don’t even worry about having people reading it just yet!

Getting It Set Up…

There are some fantastic blogging platforms that you can use just so you can get the bare bones of your blog online. There are numerous hosting platforms, such as WordPress, but the key when it comes to getting your blog online, there is a big question for you to ask yourself, to self-host or not? When it comes to hosting, the two things you need to think about are the page loading speed, as well as the uptime. There are plenty of web hosting companies, like GoDaddy, iPage, and Bluehost. But a lot of people are going for Hostgator right now, as the load speed and uptime has been better than most. Also, when it comes to web hosting, you need to think about your domain name, and while a lot of people go for things like WordPress. If you get some money together for your own web hosting, it’s only around $5 per month, and the cost of a domain name is around $10 a year. It’s not going to break the bank, but it’s much better than having a blog name with a million numbers after it, that people will never find, and therefore you won’t get many followers, and won’t build up an exciting blog that people will want to read. If your name isn’t straightforward and accessible, you are not going to get off the ground. So think of a domain name that is catchy, and is totally you!

Writing The Content…

While you may have a fantastic idea for what to write about and an amazing domain name that is easily accessible when people search in google, if your content isn’t fantastic, people are going to gradually click off your webpage. So, the best advice at the outset is to write in your own voice. As time goes on, you will get other people to help write content for you, because it builds up so much that you won’t have time to do it all yourself, especially if you expand into things like different platforms, like vlogs and YouTube videos in general. But when you’re starting out, and it’s just you, it can be difficult to try and write so much every single day. So here’s a major hint for you, get some voice recognition software, and in fact, on Google Docs, you can get the Speech Recognition Sound Writer program, which is great (and free), and it means that you can write as fast as you can talk! If you are an unbelievably slow typer, this will be your lifesaver, as you can potentially do thousands of words in the space of a few hours. It can take some time to get used to not writing with your fingers, but you’ll find that it becomes a bit more natural, because when you write with your fingers, you are somewhat editing yourself before you’ve even typed the words out. At least when you are writing by thinking about the words, it’s going straight onto the page, and it’s in your own unique voice! And this is the key to writing in your own unique style! Nobody is going to write in your style as good as you, so why don’t you start making life a bit easier for yourself?

Getting The Blog Out There…

Networking is something that strikes fear into the hearts of most bloggers, but it’s one of those essential things that if you actually want to start getting your blog out there and being read by people. And if you really want to start earning money from it, it’s one of those things that you need to start doing! So, think about networking with the right people, which can be difficult when you are stuck at home writing your blogs, but instead, it’s time to start getting out there and visiting the key bloggers either where you are, or get going to trade shows. Now, this may sound a bit businessy, but it can be very useful for you to get your blog read by people from all over the world. A lot of companies congregate at these trade shows, and so you may want to get yourself a stall set up there or get out there with a mode to network with new people, at the blogger so you can have them write for you, or you write for them! Either way, these are going to be handy tools to getting your blog out there. Now, it can be very costly to get to these places, but there are cheap airlines, cheap hotels, and apps that you can use to find the best bargains for where you need to get to. There are airlines like Allegiant Air that do cheap flights all over America, and, of course, there are websites like Airbnb. It can feel a little bit of a lonely life, especially if you’re going to all of these trade shows and conferences. But you need to learn how to make your own company, and there are lots of tech making travel easier for people right now, so it is a bit of a necessary evil, especially if you got to spend lots of time away from your family and people you love, but it’s part of the blogging game now. Loads of bloggers are out there, so make sure you start to get your name as popular as possible.

Living The Blogger Life …

Yes, if you’ve got to the point where it is your life, day in and day out, it can be quite an amazing thing to have achieved this. But it’s important not to be complacent, make sure you start pushing your boundaries, you’ve got a platform that people are clicking onto on a regular basis, so use it and start to experiment with different formats. At the outset of any blog, developing that audience is important, but once you have a dedicated fanbase; it’s now time to start pushing the envelope. Use it as a way to communicate your true passion in life, and while blogs are fantastic as a way to get people talking, it’s great to start mixing it up and make your blog more interesting. Keeping ahead of the curve and keeping your blog interesting and contemporary is the thing you need to start thinking about. And so if you do something like a fashion blog, it’s kind of inbuilt in the purpose anyway, but if you are doing a blog on something else, it doesn’t take long to be old news. Keep this in the back of your mind every time you make a new post, vlog, video or anything.

From that little idea of running a blog, all the way through to it being your livelihood, it is one great journey, and it can be the best thing you’ve ever done with your life, so if you are feeling inspired, put pen to paper, or actually, finger to keyboard!

SignatureFont72

SocialIconSmall_Twitter SocialIconSmall_Instagram SocialIcon_Small_facebookSocialIconSmall_Pinterest SocialIconSmallBloglovin' 
The above post may contain affiliate links and I may receive compensation if you click on any of the above links and/ or make a purchase from those links. Opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that I love!




We all suffer with self-confidence issues at some point or another. The fear that you may not be good enough or that you’re bound to fail isn’t something that’s easy to get over. There are very few people on this planet who have never been afraid of taking a risk. But, that fear can hold you back from achieving your dreams. You owe it to yourself to boost your confidence, get out there in the big wide world and grab the bull by the horns. But, how do you do that?

I’m not going to lie- I had a total breakdown on Monday. A project I has been working on kind of fell apart at the seams and the higher-up I was working with was (understandably) not thrilled. I thought I was going to be fired. So I called my mom, my fiancé, and then my boss in panicky tears. I hate letting anyone down. After talking it out, I realized I had done the best I could under tricky circumstances and all was not lost. It’s sometimes really hard to not get down on yourself, but I woke up the following morning with a little boost and by the end of Tuesday, everything had fallen into place.

How do you give yourself a little confidence boost when you need it most?

Coffee Contour & Confidence

Dress to Impress

No, not to impress your boss or your partner or anyone else. Dress to impress yourself. There’s something about being in the right outfit that gives you the confidence you need to tackle the day. For example, if you walk into a meeting with potential clients feeling scruffy and under-dressed, you’re unlikely to win them over because you won’t feel at your best. If you walk in dressed to the nines and it makes you feel powerful, you have what you need to make them see your potential. My personal power outfit is a fitted black dress, a black heel, and a strong statement necklace… this outfit.

Take Care of the Exterior

Isn’t it amazing what a bit of grooming can do? Often, if you’re happy with what’s on the outside, you feel more confident on the inside. It could be anything, from a simple haircut to a consultation at drstephanieteotia.com. Self-image is one of the major keys to how you view your confidence levels. If you’re not happy with the way you look, low self-esteem often quickly follows. Do what you can to take pride in your appearance and you could see a big boost. I always feel the best after a hair-did situation with Jenn at Progressions or Amanda at Illusions.

Positive Outlook

Many of us don’t even recognize how we talk to ourselves. If you’re constantly convinced that you’re going to fail, it’s likely you will fail. Sometimes, we set ourselves up for failure without even realizing it. If you hear yourself saying the words, ‘This is too hard’ or ‘I can’t do that’ you need to start training yourself to think differently. Replace ‘I can’t’ with ‘I can’. It can help to give yourself a little pep talk every morning by enforcing positive thoughts, like ‘I am capable’, ‘I am confident’ and ‘Nothing can stop me but me’.

I actually woke up Tuesday to words clear as day, “you get out of the universe what you put into it.” It may have been God or guardian angels, but some force was telling me to get the hell up and put on a smile, so I’ve been repeating that in my head all week.

Learn to Act

Did you know that everyone you see on a daily basis has some sort of struggle with self-confidence? If you see someone acting confident, it’s often just that – an act. Acting confident can lead to actually feeling confident. Sometimes you just have to take yourself out of your own shoes for a while to be able to see that confidence is achievable. When your actions begin to change, so will your thought process.

I look back to when I first started blogging. Yes, I was terrified to go to events surrounded by gorgeous women in perfect outfits, but I went! I eventually found the perfect crew to run with all because I pretended not to be scared to meet Dani for brunch!

Find Your Tribe

Real queens fix each other’s crowns. I stand by this, and this is one of the main ideals of Bubbles & Bloggers. Surround yourself with uplifting people and even at your worst, you will have support you need to lift yourself back up. You have someone to commiserate with when your day is crap. On the flipside, they’ll celebrate the little achievements with you (no matter how little!)

Be Kind

It’s important to be kind to yourself and to others. Have you ever experienced the self-confidence boost you get from helping someone in need? It can help you to realize your self-worth.Improving your self-confidence, no matter how you choose to do it, could open up a whole new world for you.

SignatureFont72

SocialIconSmall_Twitter SocialIconSmall_Instagram SocialIcon_Small_facebookSocialIconSmall_Pinterest SocialIconSmallBloglovin' 
The above post may contain affiliate links and I may receive compensation if you click on any of the above links and/ or make a purchase from those links. Opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that I love!




Ok- consider my blogging slump officially over. Last night, I went to support Dani at a blogger Q&A hosted by the DC chapter of The Blogger Union. I got to catch up with some of my Bubbles + Bloggers pals and make some new connections with bloggers I’ve never met. I was so proud of Dani- she did an amazing job answering questions about how social media works for her as a blogger. It was super inspiring and I decided that I wanted to share some of my favorite resources for both monetizing my blog and social media.

Turning Dreams into Empires Takes Hustle and Heart

Social media helpers:

Since the theme of the night was really social media, I’ll start off with that.

I use Hootsuite for all of my scheduling for Facebook + Twitter. My ideal formula is to have three of my own blog posts and three affiliate links (more on that later) a day per social media. I’ve been slacking on this, and blogging in general, since getting my new job but I want to get into a better routine, especially since Hootsuite makes it to easy. Admittedly, I don’t really schedule my Instagram posts- I just post on my Instagram and the Bubbles & Bloggers Instagram in the morning on the bus. Hootsuite takes the guesswork out of when it it best to post as well as shortens the links to make them more visually appealing to the reader.

Linktree is one of the coolest things I’ve seen in a while. You know how it’s super annoying that you can’t link in Instagram? No more is that a problem! You can add multiple links to one main place in your Instagram bio. For example, you can have your blog linked, a post you’re especially proud of, your Poshmark closet, and an upcoming event you want to share- all in one tidy place in your Instagram bio!

I mostly use Crowdfire for the Bubbles & Bloggers twitter at this point. It’s a great tool for growing your twitter network plus it helps find great, relevant content to share. The way it works is that it sets up daily “prescriptions” letting you know what would be great to share, who would it make sense to follow, etc. It also lets you know if you have any inactive followers and reminds you to show your followers love on their posts. Twitter is honestly my favorite social media, so I tweet pretty organically from my own account, but it has been totally instrumental in growing the B&B account.

Tools to monetize your blog:

The first way I ever monetized my blog was through ShareASale. When you sign up for ShareASale, you decided which of their merchants fit into your blog brand, and you apply to be an affiliate with the individual brands. Once approved, you can essentially “make” your own links that, if used to make a purchase, you will earn money for those purchases. There are a lot of smaller brands as merchants through ShareASale, but the ones that do the best for me are ModCloth and Stella & Dot! It’s great because if I feature a necklace that I love from Stella & Dot, I can link that necklace directly using my own personal link using Create Custom Link and if someone buys it from my link, I earn money on it.

Where ShareASale pays me per purchase, Shopstyle Collective pays me per click and there are thousands upon thousands of items to link to. It took me some playing around to get to the level of comfort I have with it now, but Shopstyle Collective is a great tool. (It’s also how I make my nifty widgets). I think my favorite way to use it is in my outfit posts. Let’s say I do an outfit post with a navy sweater, but I bought that sweater a couple years ago and can’t link it for my readers to buy. I can easily search “navy blue sweater” in Shopstyle and find something similar to share with my readers.

I’m a huge Amazon fan, so Amazon Associates (in theory) is awesome because it lets me share my Amazon purchases with custom links so that if my readers purchase using those links, I get a percentage (just like ShareASale). I do have to say though, I do not understand one bit when I do and do not get paid or how much. That could just be me not getting it, but it seems a bit inconsistent.

I feel like I just threw a lot of information out there, and I hope at least some of it was useful to bloggers who are just getting started and need a few hacks. Please, as I told many ladies last night, do not hesitate to reach out to me if you have any questions about the above tools, social media, blog monetization, or blogging in general. It’s all one big learning curve and I’m always happy to share ideas or even just chat. Feel free to leave a comment below or shoot me an email at thecarolove@gmail.com.

SignatureFont72

SocialIconSmall_Twitter SocialIconSmall_Instagram SocialIcon_Small_facebookSocialIconSmall_Pinterest SocialIconSmallBloglovin' 
The above post may contain affiliate links and I may receive compensation if you click on any of the above links and/ or make a purchase from those links. Opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that I love!




Happy Easter weekend, y’all. Anyone have off today? Not I, said the fly. But this weekend should be awesome! I’m going to a Blog Societies meetup for my first ever SoulCycle class at the at the 14th St. location in  DC tomorrow.

Sunday Kendall and + are going to Easter service + brunch at Filomena with my dad. Easter service is always one of my favorites, and always a nice reset button for me as a Christian. Praying for sunny skies so that we can properly enjoy our Georgetown day. BTW- Easter is a special time for Kendall and I because that’s when we made things “official” last year. His brave self came home to meet the parents (and aunts and uncles and cousins… and my mom’s yoga instructor) for Easter service and brunch.

Psalm 18:33 Bible Verse Art

This week on The CaroLøve:

A huge thanks again to Dani for making me her #wcw this week!

I am super tardy to the party about seeing Beauty and the Beast because honestly I just don’t care all that much, but how adorable/ gorgeous/ perfect is Kristen’s Belle shoot?

I’ve gotten really into American Playboy: The Hugh Hefner Story on Amazon. Call me crazy but I actually find the man inspiring. Did you know he started the magazine because he didn’t think men had a substantial magazine for themselves? The girls were almost a bit of an afterthought. He also played a part in the Civil Rights Movement.

I cannot stop listening to two songs right now: Julia Michaels – Issues + For King & Country – Priceless.

I woke up to a an article in a group chat that really struck a chord with me. I don’t think anyone should try to put themselves in a fashion box- even the stereotypical ever-fashionable French. (Even if my current casual Friday situation is French-casual inspired- black skinny jeans, black flats, and this striped top– now on sale for $9!)

Enjoy your weekend!

Sugar Bean Jewelry

 

 

SignatureFont72

SocialIconSmall_Twitter SocialIconSmall_Instagram SocialIcon_Small_facebookSocialIconSmall_Pinterest SocialIconSmallBloglovin' 
The above post may contain affiliate links and I may receive compensation if you click on any of the above links and/ or make a purchase from those links. Opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that I love!