I'm going to try something a bit different with my post today.
I feel like I have a tendency to "bury the lead" (this is journalist talk for rambling on about unimportant nonsense, while pushing the important stuff to the middle or end), and I know I can be pretty long winded (especially when telling a story about my clothes). Yesterday's post, for example, had some pretty important info in it - at the very tail end. Not everyone likes to read about the random stuff that goes on in other people's lives as much as I do, so I'm betting most of my beloved readers didn't make it that far down.
So, today, we're putting Important Stuff & Awesome Announcements at the top, with Today's Story & Puzzle Pieces making up the second half of the post. Outfit photos will remain scattered about the post for now; personally, I love having photos littered through the text, to separate sections and to break up long blocks of text. I would really appreciate some feedback on my post layout though - leave me a comment or drop me an email and let me know what you think.
1]on monetizing your blog & affiliate networks
In yesterday's post, I announced that Frayed Threads has been accepted into one of the more prestigious affiliate networks for fashion bloggers, RewardStyle, and that I have some referrals I'd love to hand out to my fashion/beauty/lifestyle blogger friends. In the interim, it's occurred to me that I never really talked about just what the hell an affiliate network is.
When I first got really serious about turning my blog into my business, I started doing a lot of research on ways to monetize (meaning to make money from my content). Affiliate networks and marketing kept coming up in my research, but every article I read on the concepts baffled me. I didn't really get it, so how was I supposed to make any money from it? I skipped over it, ignored it, and tried to come up with some other tactics.
Eventually, though, I decided to give it a go because it seems to be the easiest route and many bloggers have been fairly successful with it. Once I had signed up for my first affiliate network, I immediately understood how it worked and I was hooked. It's so ridiculously easy that I felt dumb for ever being confused by it.
Basically, it boils down to this: an affiliate network is made up of a group of retailers, all thrown together into one site. As a blogger, you can use an affiliate network's site to find links to items you love, items you wear or items you want to wear. You put those links on your blog, (as part of an outfit post, a wish list, inspiration list, must have list, etc), and when people click on them and buy them, you make a percentage of the sale in commission. Easy peasy lemon squeezy.
I talked about some of the benefits of RewardStyle in my last post, so I won't rehash here, but I will reiterate that it's thus far been my favorite network to work with, and I don't think I'll be going anywhere else any time soon. It's also the network of choice for top bloggers like LateAfternoon, This Time Tomorrow and Atlantic-Pacific, and membership is by invitation only for top level, professional bloggers.
Ten of you have the opportunity for an invite. So what are you waiting for?
Comment on this post (or my last one) with:
-Your elevator pitch (what your blog is about and why you're so fabulous)
And I'll see what I can do about getting you an invite to the web's premier affiliate network for fashion, beauty and lifestyle bloggers.
Psst... I'm still not sure exactly what affiliate marketing is, but for more info on affiliate networking and monetizing your blog, check out IFB's Fashion Traffic School.
2]up and coming bloggers, please apply here
I am looking for fashion, beauty and lifestyle bloggers to interview as part of a new weekly feature here on Frayed Threads. This idea has been bubbling around in my head for a minute now, and finally came to fruition with the introduction of the RewardStyle opportunity (above). The blogosphere is becoming intensely over saturated with blogs of every type, but it seems to be increasingly difficult to find quality personal style blogs (especially the smaller ones). Sure, there are any number of communities for the growing blog, but how do we pick through every submission to find the diamonds in the rough? Sometimes the plethora of "ADD ME AND I'LL ADD YOU" messages one receives upon logging in are enough to deter the search - so why not let me do the work for you?
The goal of this series is to seek out those bloggers who might just be getting their start, but are clearly a cut above the rest. This opportunity is available for bloggers of all ages, shapes, sizes, races, genders, etc etc etc - I don't care what you look like (in fact, that's part of the fun!), and I'm happy to feature new comers, middle-agers and veteran bloggers alike.
So what does matter then? Only bloggers who are blogging on the professional level - meaning a clean layout, original content, decent spelling & grammar and quality artwork & photos - will be featured. This does not mean that you must have a hundred thousand followers. This series is about profiling the up and comers within their niche and introducing them to the public at large (and vice versa).
Think you have what it takes to be Frayed Threads' next Top Blogger?
Email me with your name, contact info, blog link and a bit about you & your blog and why you're so damn awesome, and I'll get back to you ASAP.
- IFB is hosting a Blogger of the Month contest on their Facebook page! I <3 IFB with all my heart, and I've really been trying to find some awesome new blogs recently, so this is a great opportunity. If you would be a dear and hop on over to IFB's FB page and tally a vote for Frayed Threads, I might just love you forever - and I'd be more than happy to return the favor. Just leave me a comment to let me know that you've voted me, and be sure to include your name and the title of the photo you submitted so I can find you! (Psst... if you click here to vote for Frayed Threads, scroll down and it should be the top entry, with a photo titled "hold it together").
- I mentioned a few days ago that my utterly unscientific experiment on style would begin May 1. This month is all about changing it up and finding some gorgeous new combinations in my closet, discovering new ways to style old things, and finally deciphering how to wear my problem pieces. I'm really excited to begin this journey, and I encourage you to join me. You can track my month through outfit posts, Instagram (frayedthreads) and/or Twitter (@fashion_nerd13). Leave me your blog link and Instagram/Twitter handle(s) so I can keep up with you as well!
today's storyToday's look ended in a much different place than where it started, and (much to my surprise) the journey ended in a much lovelier place than where I imagined it might.
I purchased this dress from Threadsence over a year ago (while I was still living with Brent), and although I loved it online, I didn't so much love the way it looked on me when I received it. Not one to usually return things, I kept it, and in the year since it's entrance into my life, I've worn it only once - until today.
I stayed up far too late last night (as usual), and so to avoid the inevitable wardrobe anxiety in the morning, I decided to put my outfit together before I went to bed, which left me rummaging through my closet at two in the morning. I found a sleeveless cobalt blue tank and immediately decided it would be ideal with my bright pink skinny jeans and color blocked black/blue/pink heels. It must have looked fabulous in the dim light from my closet lamp, because I was pretty excited to pull it on this morning.
Naturally, I woke up late, so I was relieved that I had put my clothes together before bed. I hopped out of the shower and quickly got dressed... and then realized just how much I hated what I saw in the mirror. Anxiety started to creep up on me as I thought about how little time I had before work, and my mind was racing with wardrobe anxiety.
As I changed in and out of various combinations, I remembered my double layer Threadsence dress that I stumbled across last night - I had even pulled it to the front, thinking that, in light of my May experiment, it would be an excellent addition to my rotation.
I raced upstairs to my closet and pulled the hangar from my overstuffed closet. I yanked it over my head and wrapped the double wrap studded skinny belt around my waist - but immediately changed my mind and replaced it with my favorite wide brown belt. Shoes, of course, also caused me intense issues - I ended up taking three pairs to work with me, on top of the ones I wore out the door - but eventually I settled on these basic taupe sandals I got last week for my birthday. Jewelry and other accessories consisted of whatever I happened to have in my purse (fortunately, those items happened to be my current favorites), and make up was whatever I could apply on the go. The floral scarf was a last-minute addition for a splash of color against an all-neutral background.
My hair also turned out to be quite the happy disaster. I like to wash, blow out and straighten my hair every day - as you can imagine, this is quite a timely process. This morning's situation was pretty dire (even before the wardrobe crisis), so I took a chance and skipped the wash. I threw my hair into a bun while in the shower, and when I got out I ran my dryer over the parts that had gotten damp - my roots. The damp effectively killed any life my hair had, and at this point I seriously considered saying to hell with it and going back to bed. Instead, I whipped out my Bumble & Bumble dry cleanser (in brown). I picked up a tiny bottle for $19 several months ago at Sephora, and despite the hefty price tag (or perhaps because of it), I've been hesitant to try it. This morning was do or die though, so I flipped my hair over and spritzed just below the roots and ran my fingers through it to distribute the powder.
My hair still looked nothing like the models' in the magazine spreads and commercials showcasing the new wave of dry shampoos, but this Bumble & Bumble concoction did give it texture without feeling dirty or grimy - which is exactly what I needed to work it into a gorgeous, messy chignon. I've been relying on this hairstyle a lot recently, and up until this point I haven't been too impressed with my own efforts. I've tried other dry shampoos, but none have actually worked until now. Bumble & Bumble's hair powder is my new secret weapon in achieving the perfect messy hair-do.
double layer dress: tini lili, from threadsence
gold cuff bracelet: charlotte russe (similar here)
wide brown belt: vanity
gold sunbeam necklace: nasty gal (find it here)
sandals: forever 21 (similar here)
sunglasses: charlotte russe
messenger bag: ebay (similar here)
floral scarf: walmart (similar here)