Bonjour, Blogger! : Natalie

Bonjour, Blogger! Bonjour, Blogger! : Natalie image 1
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natalie-broke-student-fashionName Natalie
Age 21
Location Leeds, UK
Blog URL Broke Student Fashion

What is your blog about?
My blog started out as a way to talk about sewing and dressmaking as a student with not a lot of money to spare, but it has since grown into a more general fashion, beauty and lifestyle blog. I blog about a really wide range of topics, from fashion week, to beauty reviews, to my mental 3 month old kitten. Largely though, it’s about me and my ongoing goals to improve my awareness and share my love of the fashion and beauty world.

Is this your first blog?
I’ve had a tumblr account for a long while but I would hesitate to call it a proper blog! I used to have a blog where I did book reviews but I wasn’t very good at updating it.

When did you start your current blog?
It’s been around since May 2013, but I only really started putting time into it since around January 2014.

What made you do it?
I had just bought a new sewing machine and wanted a platform to talk and learn more about sewing and fashion in general, as it was something I had never been very good at in the past and was keen to improve in. I loved the blogs I already followed and was keen to become a more part of the blogging community.

What was your first blog post about?
I did a short ‘key facts’ welcome post – quite handy, in hindsight! After that, my first proper one was about a t-shirt refashion I’d done where I converted a man’s XL t-shirt into a vest top for the gym.

What do you think is the most useful tool to you as a blogger?
Twitter, without a doubt. I can take part in discussions, learn from other bloggers, keep on top of what everyone is talking about, and promote my own work all in one place.

Do people in your real life know about your blog? If yes, has your blog helped you career wise?
Yes! I currently work for a lovely company writing business proposals, and one of the main reasons I got the interview in the first place was because I mentioned on my CV that I had writing experience through my blog. They looked at it and we talked about it in the interview, and in the feedback I got afterwards they told me that it helped place me above several other candidates who had no similar experience. I love my job now and I’m so happy my little hobby helped to get me there.

What has been the one thing (blog post, project, etc) that you have been really proud of?
In March 2014 I did a #FrugalMarch spending ban, where I aimed to spend as little month as possible, and none at all on clothes, beauty products, or other luxuries. I slipped up a few times but got some great feedback on it and I’m looking forward to possibly repeating the challenge in 2015 – no cheating at all this time!

Where do you see your blog in a year?
Hopefully being updated more often (!) with a larger readership, and generally continuing the two-way dialogue I love with my readers. I’d like to become more involved generally in blogger meet-ups and social events, so I’m going to make that a resolution for next year. I’ve also been dipping my toe into the scary waters of vlogging lately… I hope I continue with that.

What do you wish you knew when starting your blog?
That it doesn’t have to be set in stone when you first make it! I thought I was going to lose readers when I decided to move away from being a sewing-only blog, but I actually gained them, and had a lot more fun in doing so.

What do you wish you know more about now?
Finding the time. My life is so busy with work and family and a dozen other things that I often find myself hastily writing posts on my lunch-break at work, and envying everyone else who has them all written for the week on a Sunday afternoon and neatly queued! I think my time management skills need some work ;)

How do you keep motivated to post?
I write about what I like and whatever catches my eye, so I’m more or less constantly motivated to post, it’s more about finding the time for me I think. I suffer from a couple of chronic illnesses though, so when I’m feeling down or I’m stuck on the sofa, updating my blog or replying to comments or even just chatting on twitter always brightens my day, so that really motivates me to keep on top of things as much as I can.

Anything else you’d like to add?
Just that I love being a part of the blogging community! I’m always up for a chat, so if you fancy it, feel free to message me on twitter or drop me a comment or email sometime. Thanks!

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