It has been ages since I last did a giveaway. I don’t do them too often, but I think it is time to give back. And for two reasons! On 4 September 2018, this blog, this little nook on the WWW came up on its 8th anniversary. 8 years! As if things could not get any better, I hit 1000 subscribers on Youtube last Saturday. So I felt it was time to organize a little giveaway to give back to all of you who have embarked on this journey with me and who are commenting regularly on my posts and videos.
Today’s post was a spur of the moment idea. Not because I didn’t know what to blog about, but because I suddenly felt an urge to say a bit more about my blog and my reasons for doing things the way I do them. Of course, if you have any suggestions for improvement, I’m all ears, so feel free to leave a comment down below to give me your feedback.
In case you weren’t aware, this blog gets a new post 7 days a week and there are two blog posts on Thursday. Of those seven days, 3 days are for beauty posts, food, nails, fashion, music and lifestyle all get 1 post. The majority of my blog posts is beauty related, yet I don’t see this space as a beauty blog per se, even though the number of blogs I post means I am allowed to ‘brand’ myself that way.
The reasons for writing more about beauty than the other topics is on the one hand a simple one: it’s easy. Blogging about beauty products is the least time consuming of all the different types of post I create. I buy products, snap a few shots, use them on my face and ta-dah, blog post set up done. Lookbooks take hours to create as I have to plan outfits, try them on, then find a day with good enough lighting and time to get in front of the camera to snap the pictures. The most time consuming are quite possibly videos as the prep and post recording work takes the most effort. Editing can easily take up 3 hours, which is why I cannot make videos a more regular thing.
On the other hand, beauty blogging is the most fun for me. I love to try out new products and especially with make up you can see an instant effect. I find it harder to blog about perfume or hair care products, because those are effects a camera or a screen cannot portray. By now I have found my mojo of what I want to put into a review or beauty post. The past 6 months I’ve also decided to not rely too heavily on new products anymore, but also do posts on favorites from my collection and closer looks to particular brands I have in my collection.
But I don’t see myself as a ‘beauty blogger’ or this space as a beauty blog. I started this blog because I wanted to write, to have a creative outlet, that allows me to do whatever I want. I took this space as a place to write about those things I love most. And where I love beauty products and make up especially, I have so many more interests. At first, I didn’t know how to combine all those things into one blog, and since there wasn’t much of a plan behind it, I just posted whatever I wanted to post. I would literally decide at 10 PM what would go online the next morning. I figured that having a schedule makes it easier to combine blogging and having a job so I decided what I wanted to blog about the most and made up a schedule around that.
The problem is that I’m only skimming the tip of the iceberg. I don’t get around to blogging about some of the topics I feel most passionate about in real life. It has been ages since I wrote anything about language for instance and album reviews have been non-existent ever since I first tried writing one. The reason? It’s too difficult to blog about for me. In the case of language, I simply know too much about English, Dutch and language in general that I can’t stick my knowledge into a bite sized blog post that is still interesting to read. In the case of albums, it just doesn’t seem to be anyone’s interest anymore and the past 5 years or so most of my music listening has shifted towards single songs anyway.
In any case, what I’ve decided to do is to create the blog that I would like to read myself. I find single topic blogs too one sided and it means I have to follow 20 blogs to get my fix on all of my different interest. So this space isn’t a beauty blog, because make up isn’t the only thing I care about. I love music (music truly was my first love), fashion, language, teaching (my job), working out, cooking, tv series, reading, traveling, movies, politics, international affairs, art, literature and there is oh so much more. Where writing about one single topic will get you a bigger audience more quickly, I’ve decided it would be boring for me to do so. I would simply stop enjoying writing and since enjoyment is why I started writing in the first place, I thought it best to keep this blogging experience fun for me. Kudos to anyone who happens to enjoy it too.
What do you like in a blog?
Are there any topics I mentioned in the last paragraph you’d like me to try and write about in the future?
Today is the day! September 4th 2010 was the first day my blog went live. I knew nothing about blogging, had never done it before and had no idea what to do. Here we are 4 years later and still going strong. And what a ride it’s been.
Earlier this year I finally decided what I wanted to do with my blog. For most of my 4 year blog career I was in limbo and didn’t take it too seriously. It was just a hobby, something fun to do on the side while I focus on other things. But now that I have been able to give this a good thought, I came up with a blog schedule and some ideas of what to do next. And those ideas are coming to fruitition. In the past 4 years this blog went from getting 0 visitors to 250 – 300 visitors a day. I hit a bit of a rough patch last year which caused my blog to go on the backburner a few times and of course it translated to dropping visitor numbers. By now, numbers are back at the level it was at before I had to have a blog hiatus for a few weeks and switch to every other day blog posts.
In the next few days you’ll find one of the biggest changes for me. Today, or some time this week, I will sign up for an actual domain name. To me, that shows that I am committed to this place and to keep it going for however long I enjoy chucking things online. Since I started my blog with no idea what to do, I never really invested in it either. You need a plan and know what you’re doing before you can fully commit to something and that’s what I do now, so I’m ready to take the plunge and make this an official website.
As of next week I will also make some changes to my blog schedule. I am currently blogging about beauty on Mon-Wed-Sat, lifestyle on Tue & Sun, music on Thur and fashion on Fri. That schedule will still hold, but as of Tuesday, I will have a weekly blog post on food. Be it recipes or any other food related topic: that will go online on Tuesday’s. The rest of the schedule remains the same, but on Thursday, in addition to the music post, I will add a post on nails in the afternoon. So Thursday’s will not only see one blog post, but two. I enjoy doing my nails and it is one topic that my blog touched upon a lot when I first started. It’s something that got pushed to the sidelines, not because I didn’t like it anymore, but because I found no space to put it anywhere. But now that I know what I want to do, I’ve decided to add a weekly nail post. To sum things up, my blog schedule will look as follows (starting this coming Monday):
- Monday, Wednesday, Saturday: beauty = product reviews on make up, skin-,body-, and haircare; a look into my stash; favorite products; looks; 30 day make up challenge, etc.
- Tuesday: food = recipes, what I eat, information about my diet, mabye even some health and exercise related topics, etc.
- Thursday 1: music = songs, albums reviews, indie music, etc.
- Thursday 2: nails = NOTD, my stash, favorites, etc.
- Friday: fashion = outfits, styling, trends and shoplogs, etc.
- Sunday: lifestyle = personal updates, tags, book reviews, etc.
A wish I had for this blog is to start making videos. And surprise, surprise: tomorrow the first one will go up! I don’t have a regular schedule in mind yet. I have a few videos recorded and ready to go so I will first see how those are received. Then I will see what I’ll do next. For now, I have a new youtube channel set up specifically for the blog and you can look forward to a shoe collection video for tomorrow’s post.
If you want to stay up to date with the blog, you can follow me on Twitter or Instagram: @indiequeen84. That’s where I mostly update on the daily workings of the blog.
For now, I would like to thank YOU, my visitors, for the past 4 years. Here’s to another!
And to include you in these celebrations, you need to check back today at 3 PM CET.
I’ll have a small surprise online for you then.
Whoops I completely forgot, but thankfully WordPress reminded me. Three years ago, it was a cold, dreary September evening. It was Friday and I was bored. So I decided to do what any bored person would do: I started a blog. Springing from my desire to write, I had no direction, no idea, nor did I have any clue what to write about, how to blog or how long I could keep this going. Yet here we are, three years later and we’re still going strong.
I would like to say: here’s to another 3 years, but who knows what happens? I’m thinking of putting together a little something something to celebrate and send to one of you, but I don’t have much time to do so as teaching has started back up. So whether there will be any sort of giveaway yet, I don’t know. For now, let’s just dance the night away and drink some bubbles, at least that’s what you’ll be doing. I’m about to go to bed as I am absolutely knackered from this first week of teaching.
Thank you for reading my blog!
It’s been a while since I did one of these. In fact, the last time I asked what you, the reader, would like to see on here was almost 2 years ago. I have been noticing that new people have started reading my blog and so I am interested in what you would like to see from me. I tend to write about what I want to write about: my interests are the main thread to my posts. I make lists so I can ensure that I have a bit of variety in my posts, but I sometimes get a bit stumped. So here I am asking you for your help and input. Please place your vote on the poll below and/or leave a comment. Your feedback is much appreciated.
Thank you for your time.
Where yesterday I had a post up on writing, today it will be about reading. Just the other day I realized I never shared the blogs I like to read. I have shared youtube channels before, but no blogs as such. First up I’d like to say: I don’t read many blogs. I’m not one of those people who follows 200+ blogs on bloglovin’. I basically read blogs by people I know and all of those are linked in the blogroll widget in the column on the right side of the page. The other blogs I read are all about beauty and I have one which is the odd one out. Anywho, these are the blogs I check on a regular basis. To any English readers: most of these are in Dutch.
Let’s first of all start with my favorite Dutch beautyblog: Veracamilla.nl. The reason why this is my favorite blog is because it’s personal yet professional. I like this blog so much because the picture quality is great, there is a great variety in posts and the tutorials and eye looks are amazing. This girl definitely knows how to get creative with make up. Add an amazing personality and skill and you have the perfect combination. She is definitely not afraid of trying out new things and is very good at responding to comments left by her visitors. It gives her blog a personal touch while at the same time she manages to update you on the latest make up collections (also by brands that not everyone and their mother writes about) and share with you her latest shopping haul.
The second blog I like is Beautylab. What I like about this blog in particular are the DIYs and the way in which ingredients and the more ‘technical’ side of beauty are highlighted from time to time. The owner of this website, Serena Verbon, used to be a lab tech and she definitely uses that knowledge to write about beauty. This gives the website a unique angle. She is also a blogger whom I can most easily identify with: we’re the same age, she has lived in the USA and she has a love for baking. The fact that she also has a great sense of style is the icing on the cake.
I also really like the ladies Willemijn & Martine from LiveLifeGorgeous.nl. What makes their blog fun to read is the fact that it’s not one but two people running the show. Sometimes they make joint videos, which always end up being hilarious, but they also make posts on an individual basis. I like how this gives you some more variety. Willemijn likes neutral, quiet looks, whereas Martine is a bit more of a daredevil when it comes to make up. To top it off they also have a great sense of humor. At times I find it a bit too much, but they definitely make me smile from time to time.
These 3 blogs are all huge in the Dutch beautyblogging landscape, but I also enjoy a blog that isn’t huge, yet. It’s a blog called LotteLovesBeauty. This blog is run by an aspiring elementary school teacher who likes her budget make up. I love how she can be over the moon about more expensive make up purchases. She helps me remember to also appreciate the small things in life. I could sometimes do without the continuous post about items from one haul (she often first shows a haul and then the next few days there will be articles about each individual product) but at times this is also handy when you see a product you are curious about in one of the hauls.
Then I also like to read two other major Dutch beautyblogs: Misslipgloss and Beautygloss. Although lately I have begun to find these blogs less interesting. Mainly because they keep posting updates on parties, or pictures from their daily lives. Apparently some of these posts are some of their most popular features, so I understand why they do them, but for me personally it’s not exactly my cup of tea. I still enjoy them though as they usually are first with information on new products that are yet to be released. I also like Misslipgloss for featuring articles on organic beauty products. A strength of Beautygloss for me is the owner’s love for high end products.
Last but not least, I also decided to list a non-beauty blog. Like I said I mainly read blogs on beauty (and I watch vlogs about fashion mostly), but there is one blog that I check regularly that has nothing to do with beauty at all and it’s Robsessed. My only source on all things Robert Pattinson. It’s the only one I read because these ladies have a great sense of humor and do know how to take things with a grain of salt. I sometimes get annoyed by the constant praise for his-Holy-Robness as they have dubbed him by now (that’s only one of the many nicknames they use), that is one thing I sometimes wish would change. Not everything he does is great you know…
Which blogs do you follow? Or do you maybe have a blog which you think I should check out? Let me know it a comment below!
I had grand plans to write a long post on how I exactly write my blogs. Due to the loveliest of lovely weathers and my willingness to enjoy as much of it as I possibly can, I figured that that would have to wait a bit. Instead, I would like to show you the following writing tips.
In the picture you will find classic rules on writing. Things your teachers in school probably told you not to do time and time again. Yet, in real, actual language, these type of constructions pop up more than you can count. In school writings it may still be a bad idea to use these writing techniques, but for blogging or any other casual form of writing these might come in handy. So even though you may have been told otherwise: mix those metaphors, end your sentences with prepositions and bring on the alliteration! As long as it has a function, you can still use this.
I found this on a site called imgur.com. It has a ton of pictures on there, most of them funny and I just happened to come across this. I think it’s very apt at showing how most of the time you’re told to do A, but in fact B sometimes works better. Writing rules should be taken with a grain of salt. Especially when it comes to casual writing.
Enjoy your weekend and I hope that the weather is as nice where you are as it is over here.