A daily chat between girlfriends for inspiration, encouragement and guidance to promote joyful aging while wearing strength, confidence, and head-turning, personal style.

Mar 30, 2011

Girly Girl Look #3 - Dresses!

Dress: Stein Mart
Jacket: Old Navy
Stockings & Flower Pin: Kohls
Pearl Bracelet: Premiere Jewelry
Pearl Necklace: Ann Taylor Loft


"The dress must not hang on the body but follow its lines. It must accompany its wearer and when a woman smiles the dress must smile with her." ~Madeleine Vionnet


There is really nothing more feminine than a dress and dresses have returned to the fashion trend scene in a big way. My friend, Sacramento at  MISPAPELICOS says that American women love pants too much and don’t wear enough dresses. She may be right. She pens her blog from Spain and always looks fabulous.


Sacramento!  One classy Spanish lady!


One of my goals for the warmer weather is to have more dresses and skirts in my closet….especially now that I am feeling more confident in them. I had not noticed until recently that apparently since I gained so much weight, I stopped wearing dresses …in fact, avoided them at all costs. But, that is about to change!! I really hope to see the dress section of my closet begin to grow.

But, what do you think...do American women avoid dresses and favor pants too much???  



"Dresses for breakfasts, and dinners, and balls;



Dresses to sit in, and stand in, and walk in;

Dresses to dance in, and flirt in, and talk in;

Dresses in which to do nothing at all;

Dresses for Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall."

~William Allen Butler, "Nothing to Wear"


A FINAL NOTE:
I am headed to spring retreat with 200 teenagers (which includes
April Fool's Day, oh joy!)  I will return to blogging this
weekend....if I have the energy left!!!!!

Let's hear it for skirts
and dresses!!









Mar 29, 2011

Girly Girl Look #2 - Floral


Spring 2011 Floral Trends


Flowy Jacket: Thrifted
Floral Blouse: Kohls
Red Cami: Chicos
Jeggings: Lane Bryant
Headband: Target
BOC Floral Sandals: Marshalls


Where Have All the Flowers Gone?




On to our clothing! It is the second feminine touch for the Spring 2011 Floral Trends I wanted to discuss. I am a typical girl…I love a floral touch. But another look I also love is the “artist-smock-look.” I know it features an oversized garment and that is a no, no…but I have always loved this look of a long, flowy jacket. I saw it featured again in the April 2011 Harper’s Bazaar…and I would love to find these colors.


April 2011 Harper's Bazaar


But, back to the flower garden…the great thing about the floral look, like the lace is that it is usually in…but just like the lace, we have to watch it or the matronly look will take over. I think I will avoid most of the head to toe floral looks featured in some of the magazines…and I will probably avoid the floral jackets. But, a tank or T shirt, dress, blouse, or scarf might be the perfect ways to follow the trend.


Bracelet: Premiere Jewelry
Ring: Lane Bryant

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Thanks to Susan at Flattering 50 for the Versatile Bloggers Award. I am about to leave town for the rest of the week, so I will answer the questions and pass this a long over the weekend.  It is an honor to be noticed!!

Mar 28, 2011

Girly Girl Look #1 - Lace

Lace Cardigan: Stein Mart
Jeggings: Lane Bryant
Travelers Black Cami: Chicos
Lace Cami: Vintage
Purse: Vintage
Earrings: The Garment Exchange, SA
"Lace - the invention of a goddess and the occupation of a queen" -Vinciolo


Trends this spring season are everything feminine...so this week I will focus on a few of those trends.  Let's begin with lace! 



It never seems to leave the fashion scene, but is officially in for Spring/Summer 2011. For us seasoned ladies, however, we have to be careful to not overdo the trend, or it will actually age us. Make sure that you remember “less is more” particularly with lace. Take the trend and modernize it with other pieces.


I was excited to find this lace cardigan at one of my favorite places, Stein Mart. The hint of lace peeking from behind the Chico’s Travelers Cami is actually a hand me down from my late mother-in-law. It is a beautiful full lace, vintage cami which was also handed down to her. I need to remember to take a picture of the full look one day.


Long Attitudes Necklace: Stein Mart
Locket: Forever 21
Bracelet: Lane Bryant


Dillards


My modern touch comes with the Lane Bryant jeggings and the patent shoes….all of the costume jewelry has a hint of vintage. I fear that readers need to get used to seeing the jeggings…they are one of the four pants which currently fit me. Every time I put the baggy ones on, I wince. With the expense of a wedding, it might be a while before I get some new clothing items. But I will do my best to bring variety to the blog.








“It is difficult to see why lace should be so expensive; it is mostly holes.”


- Mary Wilson Little

Mar 27, 2011

I Don't Feel Old....Do You?


Saturday Brunch!
Top:  Dana Buchman, Kohls
Pants: Talbots
Shoes: Stein Mart
Headband: Target



A new study was released this morning claiming that women begin to consider themselves old at age 29 and men at age 58. Wow, 29 really surprised and saddened me. Sad…because I hate it that so many young women would feel old so early.  Just click here....
New Study



Where I am today…right this minute…age 57…I honestly feel much younger than I actually am. After pondering this, I think it is because:


1. I generally have a positive, joyful outlook…taking one challenge and day at a time.


2. I have given attention to my outside look and taken my game a step up.


3. For the first time, in years, I am losing weight which needed to come off.


4. I have begun a program of bioidentical hormones, which have returned hair to my legs and a spring in my step!


5. I finally placed ME on the priority list after years of placing everyone else at the top.


So, what does “OLD” feel like? For me, in the past, it felt like despondency, tired, unmotivated (no vision for the second half), dried up…you get it. The times I have felt old, I looked in the mirror and focused on the one big wrinkle or the growing strands of grey hair. The wrinkles and the grey hair are going to happen no matter what I do….but the state of mind is up to me. Now when I look in the mirror, I try to focus on how fabulous I can look today.


I received an email from a vibrant 66-year-old in Ohio named Carole…when discussing fashion for the over 50 crowd, she wrote, “No little old lady polyester pant suits and sensible granny shoes for me. Today I wore a black pencil skirt, a light gray turtleneck sweater with a really cool silver and black necklace, black tights, high heeled boots and a belted black leather jacket. It's still really cold here in OH. I looked tasteful, age appropriate and kinda fabulous if I do say so myself.”


Carole, I think you and I and many of the readers of this blog need to get out and have a talk with a bunch of 29-year-olds!!

Mar 25, 2011

FBFF: Cutting to the Core

Blouse:  Old Navy
Jacket: Stien Mart
Pants (too big now): Avenue
23 pounds down!!!!!!!



Katy did not go lightly on FBFF bloggers this week. These are not easy questions to answer. I even pondered skipping, but I have decided to go for it. For most of these questions, I could write volumes…so I really believe I am just hitting the surface.







1. Do you think there is an incompatibility between feminism and a love for fashion?


We live in a day and age where certain words can close doors between people. “Feminism” is one of those words. I came to blogging with a desire to share what I had learned about many things after turning 50 and to hopefully help other women…no matter who they are…or what they believe. I love talking and being with all women…girls love girl talk no matter who they are. This is why I often avoid going too deeply into some topics unless a reader wants to address it offline in email or a call. I believe in the strength and dignity of women. We can do anything or be anything we desire to be. Part of that success, is looking and feeling our best. Enough said.


2. There is more to each of us than a love for fashion, how do you incorporate every aspect of yourself into your blog?


Quite simply…. I don’t. However, I will say that a commitment to blogging seems to peel away layers that can sometimes be uncomfortable. Once again, I do not want to close the doors between me and others. I want those doors of acceptance, from me any way, to be open. I am a strong willed woman of deep faith in God….but I am here to share His love…He created us all…and not to use this place as a platform for other things. I hope no reader would leave because of that last sentence, but I cannot control what anyone might think of me.


We are created unique and beautiful just like
everything else has been!!






3. With the fashion industry still being a male-dominated profession, how do you think it would differ if women played a larger role? I wrote a post this week about frustrations with clothing retailers and designers NOT understanding what a curvy woman or middle aged woman really wants. There were some great comments on that post….perhaps, more women in the industry would help remedy that problem.


4. How is your self-image and the way you carry yourself informed by your beliefs? I believe that God created me to be intelligent, creative, beautiful, strong, dignified, powerful, joyful, loving, prayerful, friendly, hospitable, a servant, a teacher, a mother, a wife, a friend, supportive, discerning, wise, diligent and gentle. To walk with my head down would dishonor the one who created all of that. It has everything to do with what I believe.


5. Do you think clothing/makeup/hair helps communicate the truth about yourself or are those things superfluous add-ons?


Yes, Yes…I very much think they communicate the truth of who I am. There are some (maybe reading this) who think that people of strong faith believe that women should wear dresses to their ankles and never cut their hair. I do not find Biblical support for that…in fact, as someone who has studied the Bible thoroughly, I find just the opposite. If anyone wants to know why, just shoot me an email…over50feeling40@gmail.com.

I love and am appreciative of every reader of this blog...no matter whether you call yourself a feminist or not.  We are all women...and I am so thankful to be just that!  I hope we will continue to have fun together!


If I release these balloons, they will soar!
I hope all of us will do that as well!


Now, hop on over to Modly Chic for more
answers:

Mar 24, 2011

Make Every Date Night Special

Jacket: Chico's
Tights: Lane Bryant
Clutch: Stien Mart




DATE NIGHT!!! After 27 years, my marriage is like everyone else…we have our ups and downs, our ins and outs!!



During those crazy parenting years when all three kids were home and we were running behind them, just trying to keep up, our date nights were few and far between. But, I am here to tell you that dating after marriage is really important. It keeps the sparks alive and the communication open. We are facing the “empty nest” syndrome just around the corner and we both have committed to fun and frolicking!!


I personally believe that, though you are going out with someone who has seen you are your worst, a wife should look fabulous for every date…it makes him feel special...oh, and of course, YOU TOO!

Bling on the Bottom!!





 This outfit was another “step-out-of-my-comfort-zone-moment.” When Mr. Bear said “Let’s eat sushi and see the movie Social Network,” I decided to try something new and wear this long jacket with fun tights! At first I was a little self conscious, but it quickly went away and I was fine, knowing that he loved the outfit and thought it was “hot.” On a date, that is what matters to me!

Ballet Flats; Target

Mar 23, 2011

An Acronym for Saving Money & Time





I’m a teacher….I love acronyms…they are really a great memory tool for learning! So, when Stacy London and Clinton Kelly pulled out an acronym last night on What Not To Wear for purchasing decisions while shopping….I was on board. I really agree with what they are saying and this simple little word…BASE…can save us money and time…I wish I had all of the minutes spent in returning items I changed my mind about after getting home with the purchase!! BASE stands for



B………Body Image….how does the garment fit and make your body look…is it flattering?


A……..Age Appropriate….Do you look too young….Do you look too old….does it work for who you are?


S……..Seasons….how much mileage will you get from the garment? How many different things can you do with it?


E……..Economics….is it cost effective? Worth the dollars?


The reason I was in the mall last weekend was to look for an outfit for an evening wedding….that fit! I ended up making my purchase in Dillards where I bought this white jacket and black pencil skirt. When I put on the jacket, I liked the look of it on my new, curvy body…..I believed this jacket was age appropriate (though I tried on others that day that made me feel old)….I decided I would get more mileage out of separates than a dress….and the jacket was marketed down from $139 to $49. My thought process really followed the BASE plan. Now, that I have an acronym to think each purchase through…I plan to thoughtfully use it from now on!!
I think it makes good sense....what about you??

Mar 22, 2011

Walking a Fine Line: #2...Between Young & Old

Cardigan & Scarf: Chicos
Shirt Dress: Lane Bryant
Emilie M Bag: Marshalls
Earrings & Watch:  Garment Exchange,
Resale in SA



Lyddie of Chic On The Cheap was the one who most identified with my frustrations yesterday by posting this comment:



"Discrepancy of sizes between stores, and even within stores is an on going problem for everyone, no matter what size you are. Size charts online are huge big fat lies. It is a wonder anyone can find any clothes to fit them at all. I think many times I'll buy things with this mentality that I just make it work somehow. A belt, a cardigan, a safety pin..."


My look today was inspired by Day 2 Day Wear
I love the style Jodi wears in her header!!






If I could sit down in a board room with several of my favorite retailers, I would say:


“Ladies and gentlemen, you will make more money if you tune into what makes women look fantastic and not just sell clothes. Now, I understand, there must be a market for the frumpy, oversized, polyester look. But I submit to you that the market would increase if more selections were sized to fit properly and make a woman go WOW when she looks in the dressing room mirror. You seem to assume that overweight women and women over 50 just don’t care about their overall appearance. I am astounded that you want to put women in clothes that make them look 70 and not “feeling 40.” (sorry, little plug there) I had a personal wake up call when I turned 50, so I began to shop. The first store I ventured into was called Catherine’s. I walked slowly from rack to rack thinking “Now, why would I want to give up and look older?”. That’s when I walked next door to Lane Bryant on one side and Avenue on the other. In both locations, the buyers seem to get it. They market to a younger woman, and that is where I found the looks for an oversized woman I was seeking. In both locations, I had to be careful not to select items which were inappropriately too young…but I found many over the last seven years that put me at the feeling- WOW-level.

 Now, that I am losing weight, I can venture out to more places. Last Saturday, I took the time to run into the Macy’s near my home in a mall called Rolling Oaks. I was shocked as I entered the store…..racks and racks of the same type of clothing I found at Catherine’s covered the bottom floor. I was miffed...What happened to the Macy's that I knew? The oversized, frumpy look was even on the mannequins!! Buyers, please…what are you trying to do to the women of Texas??!! I quickly ran from the store to Dillard’s and JC Penney’s. These stores get it. They have hidden the frumpy fair and display the chic, sophisticated, trendy looks. Would you like to make more money?? The Baby Boomer generation is huge…spending massive dollars on looking younger in every way from Botox to vitamins. I do not want to hear anyone say, “You’re 57…hmmm.” I want “You can’t be 57, you look at least 40!” You can tap into this, by hiring consultants who will give you advice on how to walk the fine line between young and old…between frumpy and fabulous!! Stop sending women into the world thinking this is all that fits…all that is available…I must have to look this way now that I am over the hill. Then they are despondent, defeated, shut down. THIS IS SO WRONG! I’m glad you attended this meeting today. Please take this message to heart and do set you company in the right direction!!” Psst…you can make more money if you do!"

Note to Macy's:  I spent money at Dillard's!  I ran from your store and I once was a faithful customer!
Andrew Geller Shoes: Stein Mart

Mar 21, 2011

Walking a Fine Line: #1....Between Sizes

BACK AT WORK!
  Jacket : Stein Mart
Top: Marshalls
Skirt: Lane Bryant
Headband & Shoes: Target




Last Friday morning, my daughter and I went to a cake tasting for her wedding. According to my sweet baby J, I attacked the cake and left her only two bites!! She said she looked away for a moment and when she looked back….only crumbs!



While I do think she exaggerates a bit, I confess that I have missed cake…and cupcakes…and ice cream…and brownies!! (Sigh) But the really great news is that after 45 days, I am down 22 pounds and need to keep it going…so no more cake! Last spring, I was a size 20W….today, I am on the fine line between several different sizes depending on the store and the designer or brand. Therefore, clothes shopping can be very frustrating. In some places, I am a 16W. In others, the 16W is too big. In others, I am a clear 16 with no W!! (thank you Talbots and Jones of New York). I still do not understand why there has to be so much difference, but it does force me to take time to try things on before the purchase.


Bracelet:  Stein Mart


I have taken almost all of the 20 sized clothes to resale ….not going back there ever…and I am rapidly beginning to weed out all of the 18s. Styling clothes these days can be a challenge. I tend to be on the line between too baggy or too tight, with only a few items which now fit perfectly.


I am wondering…how some of you handle it when you are between sizes. Do you not shop at all or do you have any advice for those of us in between? I would love to hear any suggestions.

Mar 20, 2011

Spring Break Comes to a Close...so sad!

My favorite window tells me that it is officially spring!  Leaves have gone from vibrant to green and white!!


Feeling Great....22 lbs down!! Look at those
jeggings!


One of the best reasons to be a teacher: SPRING BREAK…(and summer…and two weeks at Christmas…and Thanksgiving…)



Otra Vez Couture






And,  there is no better way to spend a Spring Break day, than by hitting the thrift shops with one of your best friends! Gigi and I set out to see how much we could do with determination, creativity, and a tiny budget. We began in the Olmos Park area of San Antonio…a beautiful, old, upper income neighborhood full of vintage boutiques and European bistros. The first shop,Otra Vez Couture, was featured recently in the local newspaper. I loved the look and set up of the shop. However, we found the prices to be a little high for second hand…Gigi even found a couple of designers she could purchase at the Rim, brand new for less than the second hand price at this location.  I walked out with a fun, little summer jacket by Buffalo Traders, a trademark associated with one of our favorite local retailers, Stein Mart... for just $19.  I will say they had some great selections for our upcoming Fiesta celebration in SA which is over the top COLOR!!

Otra Vez


Across the street though.....Buffalo Exchange!! What a fun shop…just as one of my students and blogger Erin ..had told me. Erin is a new employee at the Austin location. Gigi scored big here…three cute, youthful, dresses…great selection…good prices…much more reasonable and affordable. I found a fun, scarf bag to match the little jacket I got across the street and both of us walked out with a little jewelry!


Gigi with the stash!!


Our next stop was a Goodwill located near one of the higher income neighborhoods in San Antonio. We went crazy!! I could barely carry everything into the dressing room! By the time we checked out, we had skirts, dresses, jackets, tops, shoes, dresses for our daughters, and fun jewelry!! My daughter was so excited when I handed her a J Crew sundress, barely worn.


J Crew at Goodwill


After a Starbuck’s stop, we took our coupons to the Spring sale at Stein Mart. Gigi found a gold jacket she needed to complete a dress outfit for two special occasions coming up and I walked out with a fun, lace, long cardigan at only $22.


Whew! Great day…good company…scores of success…money saving….and FUN!!












Buffalo Exchange
Buffalo Exchange
Goodwill!!
I found these great Michael Kors
Platforms at The Garment Exchange in
San Antonio just prior to the
big day with G!

Buffalo Exchange


Tomorrow...back to work!














Mar 19, 2011

TX Roundup: Panel 4 & 5....It's A Wrap!!

Moderator Kristina of Pretty Shiny Sparkly




As it turned out, Modly Chic's Friend Friday question was to list the five most important things you have learned since blogging. I think I learned most of them this past week at the blogger’s conference in Austin, so I will finish that up today with a re-cap of the last two panels.



Texas Style Council Bloggers Conference: Panel 4: Authenticity & an Audience: Writing Well When Others are Watching


Panelists: Indiana of Adored Austin ; Jen of Jen Loves Kev; James of Bleubird Vintage; Moderator: Kristina of Pretty Shiny Sparkly






I loved this panel mostly because we got to meet three young wives and mothers with their priorities in order and their heads on straight. In fact, Indiana and James had husbands and children in the audience while they talked! Indiana has actually been blogging since 1999, when Blogger came to the University of Texas and sought students for an experiment to see if blogging would attract an audience! She was one of the original guinea pigs! James has been blogging for the last 6 ½ years, and on this panel, Jen was the new kid on the block.


Jen, Indiana, James: Impressive Moms!


Authenticity was defined as what makes you approachable…the girl next door…transparent…personal…. The main point of the panel: DEPTH OF CONTENT IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN REACH.


All agreed that they write exactly how they talk. They keep a conversation going online as if they were sitting down with a friend for a little daily girl talk time. Indiana said that the only thing she chooses not to do is air her dirty laundry online…if she is in an argument with her husband, her audience will not know that. Yet, James disagreed and said that part of being real for her is to tell her audience if life is not good at home or of her day has been awful.


The stand out moment of this panel came with Indiana. Her blog features affordable clothing and looks that any budget can handle. Therefore, she does not accept any merchandising gifts that she currently does not have the money in the bank for. She does not want to be a hypocrite and thinks once you set guidelines, you should stick by them. Once a merchandiser sent her a diamond bracelet hoping she would style it and write about it, but Indiana sent it back because she did not have the money to personally afford it. That’s integrity …impressive…and attractive when building a following.


Indiana practices what she
preaches!


I want to say here, that the conference was where I learned some blogger’s are being inundated with negative comments. I was surprised that this type of blogging would attract the cyber bully language prevalent on news websites, but it obviously does. James said that some are quick to question her decisions as a mother and will let her know if they think she is off track. Unfortunately, sweet Jen returned home to a sick baby and a few negative comments on her blog. While showered with support, she still had at least two women who gave her a piece of their minds right down to criticizing copy editing techniques. It is sad that a computer will empower some who are too chicken to say what they think to a person’s face. Here is the link to the conversation which occurred this week on Jen’s site:Jen Loves Kev .






Panel 5: Creating Communities: Deeper Connections both Online and offline


Dave of Etsy; Kendi of Kendi Everyday; and Susan of Modcloth….Moderator: Indiana of Adored Austin


Dave, Susan, Kendi!!

 



We closed out with the big guns! Etsy has 17 million members and represents 400,000 shop owners; Modcloth has 170,000 fans (and Susan began when she was just 17!); and Kendi now has over 20,000 subscribers!


Indiana began with this question: What are practical ways to get loyal readers?


Kendi said that she began by following other remix groups on Flickr and that helped her to find the audience she was seeking. She said that if she relates to something going on, then she knows her readers will relate to it. She is looking for mutual benefits for both when making promotion decisions. Dave said to find your own voice; be yourself and create connections; and be very visual. Finally, Susan said to view you as a brand that needs to be marketed.


Dave stressed that it is important to take your presence offline and be seen and heard in the community. “You should be looking for a unique point of view and promoting that point of view in any way that makes sense.” He recommended the website meetup.com as a way to seek like- minded people in your town for networking.


For me, Dave gave the most concrete advice in this panel and I wrote about it on my Express News site, so please check it out at  My SA City Brights.






Also, Caroline Wexler of Lucky Magazine was there, so you might see future coverage in their publication!!


Laurel at Trophy Boutique takes it all
in!!










CONCLUSIONS FROM THE CONFERENCE:


1. Attending a conference is worth the time! I learned a lot and networked with many knowledgeable people.


2. It is possible to become professional, but will take a boatload of work. Each blogger has to decide if they are willing to put that time into it….or is having a fun hobby just enough!


3. Content is Critical! Therefore, it is worth the time to develop an editorial calendar.


4. The blog is a brand…whether you are selling a concrete product or not…therefore it is worth the time to write a business plan and media kit.


5. Opportunity exists for everyone. The business world is changing…the economy has changed it…the Internet has changed it…so, for the innovative, diligent, unique blogger, there is much opportunity out there.


Just had to hit Amy's Ice Cream before
I left town and see the clothes at
Strut!  Thanks for a great
day Texas Style Council and for all
of your hard work in putting this
together!!





Mar 17, 2011

TX Style Council: Panel 2 & 3: From Careers to Burnout...and Kendi Too!





TX Style Council Bloggers Conference




Panel 2: Careers: Using Your Blog as a Career & Sales Springboard


Panelists: Kelly of The Glamourai; Brooke of Fashism Janette of Store Envy   Pamela of Market Publique; Kendra of Digital Brand Architects; Nora with Burda Style.


Kelly of The Glamourai (L) and
Janette of Store Envy (R)




It was obvious from the beginning of the day on Sunday; there were a couple of bloggers at the conference who had garnered the respect and even Hollywood-type fame with the others. When I was selecting the sessions I would attend, one blogger said to me, “You have to go to Kendi’s even if you don’t need it…after all it’s (sigh) KENDI.” (Kendi of Kendi Everyday) Later in the day, I got to see Kendi’s style, charm, and sense of humor…so I completely understood! Kelly of The Glamourai was not originally on this panel, but when she walked in and sat down there was a gasp in the audience and applause. She had the respect of those in attendance.


Kendi...the rock star!! She is in
a later panel, but it was past time
to mention her!


Kelly explained that she graduated from the University of Texas with a degree in fashion design. She headed off to New York and was able to get tons of experience, but she said quite seriously, “The fashion world is suffering right now and going through many changes. The most exciting things happening in fashion are happening online.” She works with Kendra, who is a manager for bloggers with potential to do more, such as television and authoring books...this is another unique, changing times idea!


The moments from this panel that stood out to me were:


1. Janette stressed how blogs do not have to fit old models. She launched a successful T-shirt line as an extension of her blog.


2. Nora said that she wanted to be a platform for others to succeed and that is how Burda Style grew to be so successful. She recommended that you give an authentic, engaging, experience on your site. Time ran out, but Nora felt strongly that if you have ideas, you should share them with others. I will have to ask her someday, why she wanted to discuss that topic so much.  Clearly, others disagreed and worried about ideas being stolen...not Nora.


3. Pamela said to think BIG. Bring people together in a passionate community. Create look books. Do collaborations.


4. Brooke said to take every meeting that comes your way. Reach out to people that you notice and like what they are doing. Look for ways to solicit more audience interaction.








Panel 3: Longevity: Keeping It Fresh Year after Year


Panelists: Jennine of IFB and The Coveted; Katy of Kansas Couture; Kyla of Blue Collar Catwalk Moderator: Grechen of Grechen Closet.


This panel was centered around how to stay motivated and avoid burnout. Kyla does the most frequent posting, 5-7 times per week. Jeannine is the most disciplined as she has a posting schedule; an editorial calendar; and sets boundaries between family and work. She takes weekends off from work…which means closing the computer and walking away.


Kyla


Here are the highlights:


1. Jeannine said to make it a habit to show up every day…like you would to an office. Show up even if you do not feel like it! Look for what you enjoy and do more of it. Remember, perfect is the enemy of good, so do not lag behind because you do not think the blog is perfect. Also, fulfillment is the anecdote to burnout…make sure you can be in that moment and not lose out… once again, do more of what you enjoy


2. Kyla said motivation for her is going back to basics and the place where she started. When dry of ideas, she recommends going to the blogging community for inspiration. Make sure to set boundaries. Burnout comes from pressure, we put on ourselves.


3. Katy – If burnout has set in, take a few days off look for inspiration. Don’t let your blog get in the way of your real life. Write posts and save them up when you are inspired….take advantage of the inspiration.


Katy


There’s only a little bit more to share before I wrap this up!   But tomorrow I will join others in a Day of Silence and fundraising for the people of Japan.  I would like to encourage all of you to participate in some way!!

Katy's cool shoes!!!




Jennine!....also cool shoes!