Holy moly you guys! This month marks FIVE years since I first started blogging. If you’ve been around since the 52 Weeks Project days, you seriously deserve a medal and some ice cream. I’ve been so fortunate (thanks to y’all) that this has been my full time job for the past two and a half years and I have some pretty big dreams for where I want to take things next. But I need to hear from you!
Tell me what you like! Or what you don’t like! Anything you think I should hear. Also feel free to ask me anything and I’ll answer it next week when I share the results and more into what I have planned.
Alright, the results are innnnn! Thank you so much to everyone who answered. I’m always blown away by how nice and supportive y’all are. To be honest, you play a huge part in what keeps me going, so I really thank you for just being amazing. I am certainly going to keep your feedback in mind over the next year as I try to grow and expand my blog. Now let’s get to the good stuff– the results:
The people have spoken! Looks like you really want more home decor diys and I totally hear you and have you covered. I will also be working on adding in a bit more variety in terms of diy projects, like fashion and beauty oriented ones, but rest assured that everything will still inline with my brand (fast, easy and fun!). And for those of you interested in photography how-tos, I have something coming your way in the next few months, so stay tuned!
It seems that you guys are actually a split group when looking at the questions above. I will say though, that a majority of you have made a project you’ve seen on my blog and I am SO FREAKIN’ HAPPY! That’s seriously the best news. And about the free printables, they are coming for sure! If you missed the one I shared Monday, you can grab it here.
Ask me anything!
Q: How often do you have to do your nails to get your signature photo-ready manicure?
A: Excellent question! So the secret is that I try to shoot a few posts on the same day. I might paint my nails once a week, but if anything chips, I will just paint directly over it again. It’s not as glamorous in real life, but it photographs just as nicely. I have got some mad tips for the perfect at-home manicure that I will be sharing soon :)
Q: Besides the reasoning for changing your blog’s name, is there anything else you wish you knew earlier when it came to establishing your blog/brand?
A: Yes, yes and yes. When setting up my blog, I never even thought twice about my branding. I didn’t think about my audience or consistency. I knew that I wanted to focus on easy projects and sort them by time (did since post one), but nothing outside of that flowed together. I think it really helps to know what makes your blog/brand different from your competitors and really stick with that. A strong brand can take you anywhere!
Q: Where do you get your inspiration from?
A: Anywhere but the internet. It really helps me to unplug, get out and explore. Whether it be to a new city, a cute shop, or even just a walk around the block, I like to get out and take in the world. It’s so hard to have clear thoughts when constantly checking stats, emails and likes. I’ve had some of my best ideas on an evening walk around my neighborhood after dinner. One thing I also love doing is going to a craft store and just looking at the materials. It seems without fail that I will also come up with something when surrounded by new tools and mediums.
Q: What is your favorite project that you have done?
A: Best. Question. I would say that my dream sandwich is a grilled cheese with bacon, cheddar and provolone, as long as there are pickles on the side. If we’re talking day to day, a turkey sandwich with lettuce and mayo is usually my go to.
If you have any other questions, I’ll be answering all that you leave in the comments!
First and foremost, you guys are AMAZING! Thank you so much for taking the time to fill out my reader survey last week. Your input is invaluable and I will certainly take it all to heart. Now on to the results!
I am so happy that 10 minute crafts are a hit! I will be incorporating many more of these (perhaps even a mini series) in the future, so stay tuned. Now, you might see a cocktail recipe sneak its way in here from time to time, but for the most part, I totally agree with this list!
The people have spoken on this one, Crafter’s Toolbox it is! I can’t wait to share some of my favorite tools with you. I loved reading the ‘other’ responses on this question too, you’ve all given me so many new ideas to try!
Let’s dish about sponsored post for a moment here, shall we? Each and everyone of you who filled out the survey had nothing but encouraging and sweet things to say on this topic. I can’t thank you enough for that. I just wanted to let you know that I will only be partnering with brands who I trust and like. If a product sucks, I’m not going to tell you it’s the greatest thing around. I’d like for this blog to be a place of transparency, and I hope that’s okay. Speaking of which, time for the Q&A!
The last part of the survey, I gave you a chance to ask me anything. Boy did you guys deliver!
Q: How do you stay motivated to post regularly even when you’re having bad times?
This is a wonderful question and honestly something I’ve struggled with from time to time. My previous blog (52 Weeks Project) was all about routine. Rain or shine, the goal was to complete and share one new craft project a week. Even though I wasn’t happy with everything I made, I still posted. I think doing that for a two years really helped me establish a routine. Aside from that, I have to say the support I’ve received from you, the readers, really pushes me.
Q: Do you have some advice for blogs just starting out? I’m not sure where I want to focus my content on!
Yay, I’m so excited you’ve decided to start a blog! The main advice I can give is to find the topic(s) you love and can see yourself writing about day after day, and year after year. Start by making a list then sit down and really evaluate what sets your idea apart from every other blog out there. Each person has unique interests, view points, and passions, so I know you’ll find something great!
Q: What’s your one mega seemingly insignificant pet peeve?
Well, I’m sure this one is not shared with many people, but it drives me crazy to see people sitting on fire hydrants. Urine soaked fire hydrants. I never noticed this before moving to San Francisco, but there you go (well aware it’s weird). Also when people chew or make sounds with their fingernails. Bleh!
Yup that’s right folks, I used to craft on the floor next to the window of our tiny (less than 500 sq. ft.) San Francisco apartment. And yes, there were times when the people who lived across the way thought I was photographing them. Oh well, it happens right?
Each week, I moved all of our furniture to one side of the room so that I had enough space to make and photograph everything. When it was all done, I had to put everything back in place. Now I hope you see why I started sharing cocktail recipes ;)
Q: I hear San Francisco is the most expensive place to live in the US. If you don’t mind me asking, can you make a living with Crafted LIfe? Or do you have to supplement it with other work?
The short answer here is, I can’t. Well at least not in San Francisco at this time.
In March of this year I decided to make this blog my primary focus/job. Given that our rent was $2,500 a month (yikes!), I had to supplement my income with a few freelance photography gigs here and there. My boyfriend Gabe is also self employed (founder of imgfave), so our income is never consistent. We were having to scrape by just to make ends meet which was adding unnecessary stress to our work. As much as I love San Francisco and everyone I met there, the pressure just wasn’t worth it. We moved two weeks ago, and are now back in the Pacific Northwest.
For now, The Crafted Life is my primary source of income. I’m still stressed about paying the bills on a month to month basis, but it may just be the most liberating and exciting risk I’ve ever taken. I’ve also been working on a top secret project that I will be sharing with you soon!
Q: How much time each day (or week) do you give to your blog?
At this time, I am working 6.5 days a week, 10-11+ hours a day. On average, one tutorial takes me an entire work day day to complete. Aside from that, there’s a lot of behind the scenes work that happens in order to make everything run smoothly.
Q: What do you see as the next big thing in crafting?
Such an interesting question! It’s so hard to choose because I think a lot of wonderful things are being done right now, but if I had to pick one, I would say 3-D printing. The possibilities are astounding and I can’t wait to see it become more mainstream.
Whew, thanks for holding in there!
I know there are several questions I didn’t get to answer here, but I have longer, more in depth posts coming soon that will hopefully wrap everything up. And if you missed the survey, feel free to leave your thoughts/questions in the comments below! You can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’m always happy to chat!
A lot of changes have taken place around this ole blog over the past few months and I’d love to hear what you think! It’s six quick questions, then bam, you’re done. There’s also a section to ask me anything, craft related or not, and I’ll be publishing those results sometime next week. Many thanks in advanced for taking the time to fill out the survey and for all of your support!