Thursday, December 6, 2012

Behind the Blog: Because Shanna Said So

This week's Behind the Blog is Shanna from Because Shanna Said So. Shanna is a beautiful and hard working wife and mama to two beautiful little girls. Her blog is about style that doesn't break the bank - aren't we all looking for that? I'm so glad she agreed to participate this week!
Tell us what motivate you to start blogging. Were you following a lot of personal style/fashion blogs before you started blogging?

I started blogging on a total whim. I had a friend mention to me that I should start one and showcase some of my fashion tips. I thought, why not. So, one day I decided I was going to do one and the next day I did. I had no idea what I was doing and never even followed a blog before I started. Crazy, I know.  I have learned so much and my style has evolved because of it.

Which blogs do you read every day?

Honestly, I don’t read one particular blog(s) every day. There are so many that I do follow. The ones I read most are my friends that I have made through blogging. I truly don’t read the BIG name blogs all that much.  I read the ones that I have made a connection with.

Who takes your pictures? What cameras/lenses do you use? Have you ever been "caught in the act" of taking these pictures?

My husband takes my pictures. He is the only one I really feel comfortable with. I don’t have an expensive camera. It’s a point and shoot. I haven’t invested in a higher quality one just yet. I think I am just too intimidated. Yes, I have totally been caught in the act! People just smile, look at me weird or ask us if we want “them” to take a picture of “us” together.

What programs do you use to edit and upload your pictures? You often times make collages of outfits - what program do you use for that?

I use PicMonkey and iPiccy for all my editing and for the collages. They are both free online programs and are super user friendly.

Do people in real life know about your blog? What were their reactions when they found out about your blog?

Yes, everyone close to me (friends and family) know I have a blog. They support my 100% and hopefully read it every once in a while. My husband is my biggest fan.

Many fashion bloggers hop from one trend to the next. How do you try to stay on trend while working within your budget and closet?

If I want to pick up a trendy piece, I head to Forever 21. They carry so many of the latest fashion trends at great prices. Half of my closet is from there. I am a HUGE budget shopper. I always have been…always will be. My motto is “You don’t have to spend a lot to look like you did.” I also have a hard time getting rid of my clothes, so I have quite a bit to work with…mixing the old with the new.

Putting yourself on the internet comes with the expectation that not everyone will always love what you are wearing and writing. Have you encountered any of these criticisms, and if so, how do you handle it?

That is the HARDEST part of blogging…putting yourself out there. It can be very nerve wracking, intimidating and can make you second guess yourself 100 times a day. I get unfollows all of the time and wonder what did I do? What did I say? And I take it personally. I don’t have thick skin, but blogging has given me more confidence and an attitude of loving myself and what I believe in…regardless of what someone that I have never met in real life thinks. I have never gotten a NASTY comment on my blog. Some weren’t the most pleasant, but I did responded to them with class and dignity. You will NEVER make everyone happy….it’ a fact of life.

What has been the best thing to come out of blogging?

Hands down…the friendships I have made! There are a handful of girls that I talk to on a daily basis and have become some of my closet friends. It’s CRAZY! I feel like I have known some of them for years and couldn’t imagine my life without them now.

When it comes to promotion of your blog, what methods do you use? Do you spend a lot of time commenting on other blogs, pinning your looks, doing link ups?

I try and promote all of my posts on FB, Twitter and Instagram. I will “pin” myself on Pinterest occasionally. I typically link up with the same blogs every week, but not every post is a link up, but they do help with finding new blogs and new bloggers finding you. I don’t spend as much time finding new blogs, but that’s all I did when I first started out. I would spend hours commenting. Now, I have stepped back from that because it was consuming so much of my time. Blogging can become a full time job if you let it.

What tips or suggestions do you have for your fellow bloggers?

Stay true to yourself and people will be interested. They want to see and read “real”. Don’t post because you feel like you HAVE to. Do it because you want to. Don’t get discouraged by the blogging cliques because they are out there and they are tight. Be genuine in your commenting. Develop a loyal following by responding to people and commenting back on their blogs. You won’t gain 100 followers overnight…it takes time. A lot of time. I think it’s best to grow slowly and not fly off the charts right away. This point goes back to developing a loyal following. Most importantly….HAVE FUN and try to not take yourself too seriously!

Thank you again Shanna! Next week's Behind the Blog is Erin from Loop Looks!