No matter how well I attempt to plan my packing, there always ends up being somewhat of a disparity between what's in my suitcase and what I actually end up wearing once I'm there. Not because I end up buying new clothes (although I did do a fair bit of that on this trip), but because I get so influenced by my destination that I re-consider what's in my suitcase and start to wear things in new ways. By Day 2 of this trip I was doing just that - ordinarily I would never have paired that top with those trousers, nor would I have paired Day 4's graphic print skirt with such a bold top.
Thursday, 2 July 2015
Okay, but what even was June?! I usually use this opening paragraph as a little summary of my month but I feel like all I did was mooch about. Whatever that means. I guess moving back home properly was important, I did some part time work in hospitality, went on holiday and blogged in between. Oh, and the small matter of scoring my first full time job(!!!!!) which I started this week. June has been weird, probably because it was the first time in the long time I didn't have to worry about an internship/dissertation/exam. But it was a good month nonetheless.
Here's what I was lovin'...
Tuesday, 30 June 2015
Madrid has been at the top of my list for quite some time now. I'd heard Manolo Blahnik; master-crafter of footwear and a staple on the International Best Dressed List speak with exuberant adoration for the women of Madrid and their affinity for elegance when I attended Vogue Festival last year. I'd had friends who'd visited earnestly imploring me to do the same, challenging me to not fall in love with its vibrant people and delicious tapas they way they had. I'd double-tapped all of carambalache's Instagram posts when she'd lived abroad there and heard all about Madrid life first-hand from a local via my good friend Blanca.
It's safe to say my curiosity was well and truly piqued, so when the (rather last-minute) opportunity arose to finally make the trip, I jumped at the chance faster than you can say "me gustaria un poco de vino" (sadly the most advanced phrase my Spanish extends to - thanks Memrise for prioritising this as the first thing to teach on your 'Spanish For Beginners' course).
Saturday, 20 June 2015
Tuesday, 16 June 2015
1. Buffer: Hands down the most efficient, reliable and easy-to-use social media scheduler I've tried. I only use it for tweets, but it sure does make scheduling a total breeze. Plus, it actually posts your photos to Twitter rather than just a link!
2. Ifttt: This is what I use to make sure my Instagram posts are shared on Twitter as actual photos instead of links. I noticed a huge leap in Twitter engagement once I started doing this, plus it links back to your Instagram account, which in turn widens your Instagram audience. The rather curiously named Ifttt (no idea how to say it irl) have looooads more time-saving 'recipes' such as auto-updating Facebook whenever you publish a new blog post, so it's well worth a look.
3. Twitter: I couldn't not include Twitter. To get the most out of it as a blogger, you have to think of it as more than just a place to promote your links. From finding new blogs to swapping blog tips, Twitter is easily one the the best places to network with other bloggers. Blog chats are a big part of that, but it's also an easy way to keep to to date with your favourite brands and bloggers.
4. Pinterest: Whilst it remains a mystery to some and staple to those who can't get enough of it, Pinterest is one of the most up-and-coming tools for bloggers. I like to use it to find photography inspiration, read up on blogging advice and to keep an eye on upcoming trends that I can incorporate into posts (what's hot in interiors, street style and recipes tends to gain a lot of momentum on Pinterest first). Joining/following a blogger board is a great way to share your own posts & find new ones too.
5. Polyvore: This is the site I use to create my 'Outfit Idea' posts, as well as to save any clothes I like for future reference.
6. PicMonkey: An essential for any blogger, this comprehensive photo editor allows you to do a whole range of tasks such as resize images, add filters and create collages - all for free! Fotor is another great tool, which even has its own downloadable desktop version.
7. W3Schools: This site has always answered any HTML query I've had. As complete HTML beginner, this site helped me do all my blog coding myself.
8. TinyPic: A fast way of turning images to HTML. It's what I used to put in all my social and category buttons in my sidebar!
9. Google Photos (Cloud Storage): I never realised how useful having access to phone photos on my desktop would be until this came into my life! If you don't already, I'd really recommend setting up an automatic cloud backup from your phone. It speeds up reviewing and editing photos, which is especially useful if you're using your smartphone for blog photography!
10. DaFont: The ultimate font database. Especially useful if you're looking for a specific font by name.