Hello everyone!! So this is a very SPECIAL blog post!! It is my 1 year blog anniversary!! I CANNOT BELIEVE IT!! A year has passed by so fast and I have learned so much in this last year. Who knew a little idea or goal that I had could grow so fast and I have all my followers and readers to thank for this! THANK YOU so much for your continued love and support of me! You have no idea how much that means to me! I thought it would be cool to do a traditional “Blogiversary” post and photoshoot! The photographer that did this shoot was Luisas Manning who did a wonderful job! This beautiful maxi dress you can purchase here which comes in so many colors and styles. Use code TAKE15 for 15% off of your order of $150+ and free shipping!
So Foreign Fresh & Fierce Style- how did I come up with the name? Unlike what people may automatically presume, this was not self-description of myself. It is more of description of what I like. I love everything that is “foreign fresh & fierce”- travel, foods, music, husband! LOL So this name was in my bio when I first got my personal IG account and so I figured that the name is different and stands out and I decided to name my blog that! I originally had my fashion Instagram page for about a year in spring of 2015 before I decided to have an actual blog. I did not know how to post or how to post or what my overall theme would be. So I was on that account off and on and then months without posting. I gained followers but slowly so I think I lost my edge of it all.
It was not until going on a road trip to the Grand Canyon in March 2016 that I got my drive back. I began posting my travel photos and within a 4 day period I gained over 100 followers. Then my friend Jennifer of Sassy Teacher Chic who we went with on the trip asked me a question that really made me think – “You take so many photos…what do you do with it all??” It was a good question. I usually keep them on my phone, social media or make photo albums which I have not done in awhile but the majority of my photos stayed on my phone or camera. So then I rethought the whole idea. If I blogged then all those photos can we seen and put to good use. Many of my friends love my travel photos and so I thought let me try this blogging thing out.
I still did not know what I was doing nor how to be a blogger, but I began researching. I looked at other bloggers IG pages and also discovered Style Collective community in April 2016. Then I realized that in order to really be a successful blogger and connect with brands, I need to actually blog. So in early April, I bought the domain of my website and slowly began educating myself on how to build a website. It was sooo overwhelming in the beginning. But I kept at it and finished the setup and two blog posts in less than a month. I created my own logo with my favorite colors purple and green and found fonts that I felt reflected those words and its meaning.
So why is my anniversary date May 10th and not May 1st?? Well I was so stressed and nervous with the launch of my website. I thought my blog site had to be perfect with no mistakes so I kept holding out. I was in contact with some Style Collective bloggers who gave me advice e and the push to go ahead and launch the site. They help me realize that my blog did not have to be perfect in order to launch it. I can work out kinks and things as I go along. Many of them changed their site many times before they got it how they wanted. That was a BIG relief for me! So I did a launch and I remember I had over 100 page click in a few hours! I was so excited! I thought I would have like 20. From there the Foreign Fresh & Fierce brand grew!
I never imagined within only 3 short months I would be getting requests from brands and some big brands such as Macy’s, Max Factor and D Magazine! It made me feel good that I started something good and doing something right to attract brands whether big or small. I knew my focus was going to be fashion & travel. My first few posts were fashion & my trip to the Amalfi Coast. It was so great to write about what I already love doing and sharing all my photos. My travel posts does really well and I will continue to bring you travel tips and posts in the future like my Greece Travel Experience! Little did I know that blogging takes A LOT of work especially when I have a full time job and other responsibilities and activities I am involved in. Finding time can and has been a challenge especially lately with my job. I have a very stressful and demanding full time job and lately I have been coming home so late and tired. I want to write but sometimes I am just too tired. Plus I plan all of our vacations so coordinating what we do and hotels and things makes it even tougher too. But slowly but surely things will get back to normal and I will be to do things how I would like again.
WHAT HAVE I LEARNED ABOUT BLOGGING IN YEAR 1?
- Stay true to yourself! It can be tempting to want to conform to what other bloggers are doing and seeing their success and think “well maybe I should change”. I had thought that cross my mind a few times but in the end I decided I like being me and the people who follow me love me for who I am and that is why they are following me.
- Never give up! This can be a tough industry and can be draining but if you have a goal DO GIVE UP! Keep working at it and even if it takes several months or years, you will see your success and be thankful you kept pursuing it.
- Don’t get discouraged! This is something I am still working on. Unfortunately there is this “competitive” mentality in the blogging world. Some bloggers are afraid to share tips or not even want to connect with other bloggers because they think they will lose followers or other blogger will steal opportunities from them. It has been soo frustrating as I have come across a few bloggers like this. Even more frustrating when I sense that some bloggers due to their stats won’t give you the time or day before of your little following. What I keep telling myself is to stick with it! One those bloggers may regret how they treated you or ignored you because you can be the next big thing in a blink of an eye. Then they will wished they had been more “professional” and kind towards you. As one blogger told me, if certain “big bloggers” are being unresponsive to questions you have about blogging, it is probably because you are doing something right, they see that and they see you as a threat! With all that being said, I will continue to be supportive and help any blogger that has a question or needs advice.
- Be humble! Humility I feel plays a big part in #3 above. If you get hot headed because you just landed a big collab or you have an increase in followers, it can mess up your reputation a bit. Last year I collaborated with big local brand and one of them sent me a DM after the collab was done stating that everyone at the company loved working with me because I was one of the easiest bloggers to work with. Remembering some comments I overheard prior, I had an idea what issues they may have had with other bloggers. I am not stating that as a blogger you should give in to whatever a brand demands but sometimes there is a way to approach things and sometimes you have to see the bigger picture in some areas and not be so “snobby”. Be humble!
- WORK WORK WORK! This is in the sense to keep working at your blog and find ways to improve and stand out. I felt like I have changed the feel of my Instagram a few times over the past year and so far the way it is now I love it because it still is a reflection of me and my original thought about my style. I love color and it always been a part of me but now I feel like this them is reflected better on my Instagram and blog!.
So THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU to you all who have followed me from the start!! I really appreciate your love and support and hope that you continue to this wonderful journey with me! I also have to thank my husband for supporting me with my blog and putting up with my demands! LOL He takes all my photos. He is not a professional photographer but has always been willing to take my photos and wants me to succeed in this business!
Stay fresh & FIERCELY you!