Monday, September 12, 2011

Thanks for Attending!

Hi guys! Thanks so much for attending the conference. We were so glad that we could put it on. The content will continue to be available for you, so don't worry! You can come back and refresh your memory, use a tutorial, find a link, or just browse through at your leisure! Your same username and password will still work. We'll going to be drawing the giveaway winner soon, so watch out for that!

Here are a few pages We've included for you guys to check out. For those of you who didn't get to participate in the live chats, We've included the transcripts, so you can go back and have a look at what we talked about! We've compiled a list of resources that are helpful links we've used in the past and full of some really great knowledge. Last but not least... you guys! We've included a page where you can leave your blog URL and name so we can check out the blogs of all you lovelies who have participated in the e-conference!

Fashion communities

by Tieka, Selective Potential


Chictopia is an online fashion community where anyone can sign up for an account. They call themselves the largest online community that gives everyone a voice in fashion. They have over 100,000 users and are always growing. They are one of the top 4 style sites and have a huge presence in the online fashion community. I'm sure you've seen hundreds of blogs with their Chictopia badge on it. They have several features that I'll quickly explain and I'll tell how how I use Chictopia to my benefit.

Style Gallery is one of my favorite features. They have a gallery of photos of girls whose photos have been rated "chic" by members. I use this daily for inspiration. They filter the photos by making members vote photos "chic" or not… so that way you don't have to sift through a bunch of mediocre, dark, blurry, fuzzy, photos. This gallery gives you the best of what is on Chictopia so you can be inspired. You can browse by clothing type, colors, trends, everything. It's so helpful if you want to style up an olive green article of clothing… you can click on the color and find hundreds of outfits styling up an item that is olive green. I love that feature.

Rewards are items Chictopia posts from sponsors! You can earn chic points by doing several things: uploading a photo, commenting, gaining "chic" votes, gaining "fans" or "favorites" to build up enough points to purchase a chic reward! Keep on the look out though - they go super fast. I've only been able to snag one item from them!

Chic Swap is where you can sign up to become a Chic VIP so you can upload to the swap. You can post items, sign up for items and swap clothing online!

Forum They have a great forum with over 10,000 topics and over 164,000 posts on everything from living and advice, to current events, to culture and interests.

Community is where you can find out about recent contests Chictopia is holding (they hold SO many great ones!), they talk about Style Icons (hang tight, I'll give you some tips on how to become a style icon soon!) and the Best of Chictopia with some of the top-rated photos and outfits.

So go in, create an account and start updating with outfits! It's a fun community; make the most of it!

Tips on how to become a style icon:

- Post everyday: I know, it can be really tough to post everyday, but it's the best way to ensure you are constantly exposed to readers so they can add you as a favorite during the month.

- Step out of the box: When I was in the running for style icon, I had to be really really creative. I used a scarf as a cardigan, wore the funkiest floral tights I could find and tried to work my closet in a completely fresh and unique way.

- Comment on other photos: It's all about networking. If you comment on other photos, comment back on who has commented on your photos, you'll just be exposing yourself to so many more people who can add you as a favorite! The trick of the game is to get as many "favorites" as possible!

- DO NOT message or comment on people's photos and ask them to add you as a favorite. That will never work, plus it's annoying spam!


Weardrobe is a great online fashion community. It's a bit more low-key, more focused on the actual outfit photos instead of trying to filter it out by trend or color. Let's focus on the benefits of Weardrobe!

Featured: If you upload your outfit pictures to Weardrobe, you have the opportunity to get featured! They pick only the best outfits in the community and put it on their "featured" page along with links to shop similar styles! It's super helpful if you spot something you like on the featured page… you can shop it really easily.

Recent: Recent shows you a quick and easy look at some of the most recent outfit posts that have been styled. I love the simplicity of Weardrobe and how they let the bloggers do the talking mostly.

Explore: They haven't been keeping up on Weardrobe as much as I'd like to see, but they used to do interviews and features on bloggers! I like to check out their "blogs we love" sidebar. Such a great resource to some amazing blogs out there!

My favorite feature about Weardrobe:

You can name your clothing articles anything you like. So, whenever I upload a photo to Weardrobe, I am very very particular on what I name the item, so I never name the same clothing article the same name. Why? Because it's AWESOME to be able to click on your outfit photo, click on the name of the clothing article and see all the different ways you've remixed that item (like so!). Weardrobe is like… a remixer's dream! You can't do that on any other online fashion community. is a "collective fashion consciousness". The home page is empowering. These are real people.. and they look like they've come out of a fashion magazine! It's such a great resource for inspiration. Lookbook used to be an invite only community, but now they've opened it up and anyone can join!

Hot: judges looks based on hypes. Users can "hype" a look and it will rise to the top of the "hot" page. It's a big deal to be placed on the "hot" page!

New: The new page showcases all of the newest photos that have been put on Lookbook. It's a great way to see all of the looks instead of just the "hyped" ones.

Top: The top page contains the top looks of the week, by total hype.

Leader: This page showcases all of the big names on Check here to see the most popular Lookbookers of today, this week and of all time on Lookbook.

The Pros:

The GUYS! On Chictopia and Weardobe, we are lacking some major guy fashion inspiration! I love using to look for new ideas for Brett. He secretly denies me and says he hates what they are all wearing… but he'll be peeking over my shoulder and I'll spot him picking up an item that he saw on Lookbook. :)

The Cons:

The lack of variety in body type and ethnicity. There's definitely a lack of diversity on Lookbook. While there are tons of people on Lookbook with amazing style, I do love seeing more of a variety of people in all colors, shapes and sizes.

I hope that helps you learn more about the online fashion communities! There are several out there that can help you, but these three are the biggest ones that have helped me in my fashion blogging journey. Keep your eyes peeled though - there are so many online communities popping up and another one might fit what you need more!

Writing your "about" page

by Elizabeth, Delightfully Tacky

Once you start blogging, you're probably eventually going to want to post an "About Me" page, so your readers have a place to go and find out more about you, and maybe answer questions they may have. A good way of figuring out how to write your About Me/what to include is by checking out other bloggers' about me sections.
Mini Bio Section
Since your About page is about you and your blog, it's probably a good idea to include at least a little section giving people a mini bio of yourself. You can include what you blog about, things you like, where you are in life (student, married, mother, etc), where you live (if you feel comfortable disclosing your general location), and so on.

F.A.Q. Section
A great thing to include in your About page is an F.A.Q. section. Oftentimes you'll get a lot of the same questions asked of you and by including the answers to those types of questions in your F.A.Q. you can avoid having to answer it over and over. You can also use formspring or a general call for questions people would like answered to find questions for your F.A.Q. You might discover some things people were wondering that you'd never thought to share before!

Favorite posts
I like to include links to some of my favorite or most popular posts, so if people are just starting to read my blog and might have missed some of my favorite posts from the past, they can check them out! On my blog, this is actually on a separate page from my About page-- my Start Here! page, which I created as sort of a mini About for people who've just discovered my blog.

Info for sponsors
Potential sponsors will often go to a blogger's About Me page to find out more about how they can sponsor. It's good to include a link over to the page you've created with all your sponsorship info, so potential sponsors can find the information they're looking for.

Your contact info
Don't forget to let people know what your contact info is! Make sure to include your email address and if you haven't elsewhere on your blog, link to your blog's facebook page and twitter.

Fun pictures!
Because reading a huge block of text is no fun. Include some fun photos of yourself (this is, after all your about ME page. Haha!)

Tips & Tricks for swapping

by Elizabeth, Delightfully Tacky

One thing that has been a really fun part of blogging is swapping. Swapping is a great way to not only interact with fellow bloggers in concrete way, but to increase the variety in your wardrobe in a fun and free way. A cool thing that I've discovered about swapping is that it lets me try styles that may be a bit outside of my comfort zone or just styles that I thought might not work well on me. Because the clothes are swapped, though, I don't have to invest in clothes that I'm skeptical will work on me, I can try it out for free!

I started the Delightful Dozen back in 2009 because I loved the idea of a sort of "sisterhood of the traveling pants." Plus, I thought it would be really cool to see how 12 different girls styled up the same item. I knew they would all style it completely differently, and it's such a great way to show how the items in our closets have so many different options, we just don't always have the mindset to see it. Someone with a different brain could see the same clothing item and think to style it totally differently than you would! Another swap group that started up in 2010 is the Take Ten girls in the UK. They decided to make their own swap group after seeing what the Delightful Dozen was doing in the US! Don't feel like you can't start up your own swapping group, just find some of your closer blog friends and bring it up! Chances are, they'll think it's a really fun idea and would love to be involved.

Another way to swap is by going to local clothing swaps where you take some of your clothes and a ton of other people bring theirs too, you put it all in a pile and then start picking what you want! I've never been to one before but I want to so bad! The Swapaholics do swaps all the time and they even have listings of swap events all over the world at their event page (pssst, there's one coming up on Sept 29th in Boston!). You can search for swaps based on your country and state. If you're hosting a swap, you can list it too, so more people find out about it!

Delightful Dozen3

Some tips for swapping

1. Find a blogger (or bloggers) who are similar in size to you. This isn't absolutely necessary, but it can help you guys fit into each other's clothes. Sometimes it's interesting, though, to style things that aren't exactly your size. More problem-solving and innovation happens!

2. Start a flickr group where you can post discussion topics with photos of the item you're putting up for swap. That way if you have more people in your swapping group, they can take a look at it and comment if they'd like to swap that item.

3. Create an address directory of the girls in your swap group. This makes it easier to find the address you need to mail the item to. Not so much a big deal if you're swapping with one or two people, but if you have a group of swappers it's nice to have on hand.

4. If someone doesn't style your item, don't feel bad. Sometimes it's just too hard to style, or doesn't fit, or the person just can't figure out how to incorporate it into an outfit.

5. Ask one of your sponsors if they'd be interested in sending you guys an item to all style up. The Delightful Dozen did this with a top from Ruche and it was way fun!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

NYFW: A Very Stylish Picnic

Saturday was a wonderfully relaxing day after the craziness of fashion week. There was a picnic hosted in Central Park by Calivintage, The Clothes Horse and Fancy Fine. It was delightful to sit around with other bloggers, meet a few new girls, eat fruit, snap outfit photos and enjoy the beautiful weather NYC had to offer! Every girl dresses so romantic and whimsical almost. Must be the picnic style! ;)

BONUS: Creating a working environment

A working environment is a huge deal when you have a blog! More than likely, you'll be working from home a lot and you need to set aside the distractions that might come from working at home. Create a little corner, clear off a desk, set up at the kitchen table… whatever it is, make sure you have a special working environment that suits your needs.

Steps to take to create a working environment:

  • Find your space. Find a space in your home you can set aside for a work-space. Like I said, it can be a small desk in the corner, a mini end table inside a closet, whatever it is… find a space that will work for you. I'm lucky enough to have a little nook in our recreation room that I devoted completely to my blog studio.

  • EMPTY your space. Huh? Seriously. Empty it. Bare. Nada. Zip. It is so helpful to see the area alone, with no clutter, nothing. That way you can map out where everything will need to go! (Plus it's a great opportunity to clean from top to bottom!)

  • Furnish. You'll need a tabletop or desktop of some sort! That way you'll have your computer in one spot, along with sticky-notes, books that are of importance and anything you'll need on a daily basis. I also included an enclosed shelf where I can store giveaway items, samples that I throw into packages and other miscellaneous items I might need. I also have a filing cabinet full of cards, papers I need to store and a pen drawer for all of my writing utensils and supplies. Include a comfy item for visitors. I purchased a cute chair from IKEA with a footstool, but it can be something as simple as a floor pillow or bean bag. Plus, if you're flipping through magazines or need a comfy place to think, you'll have it right there.

  • Purge. Before placing anything into your space, think about it. Are you putting a box in your space that hasn't been sifted through? It's full of old dust bunnies and calculators that don't work? Get rid of those items! If you know you're not going to use it, now is the perfect time to sift through everything and figure out what you need and don't need to keep.

  • Organize. Purchase some inexpensive file storage. I have boxes, magazine files and binders to store all of my papers, envelopes, you name it. Tip: Find ones with a place to label the box! My most used boxes are: shipping materials, envelopes and letters I've received in the mail from readers/friends/bloggers.

  • Lighting. If you're working on your computer a lot, you're going to want to avoid bright lights if you can. It strains your eyes to have too much light while you're trying to look at your computer screen, so try to place a nice warm-light. I have two lamps in my studio… a table top one and a paper lantern. They are both very warm and it's cozy and inviting to be there at night, reading blogs and catching up on emails.

  • Decorate. You'll want to add personal touches to your space! Include pictures frames, quotes, inspiration, magazine rip-outs, whatever makes you happy. When you are stressed and trying to get through a hundred emails, you can look up at something… be inspired and get right back to work. I keep a magazine rack so I can stop what I'm working on, get into my cozy chair and read a magazine. I also have a magnet board where I can rip out magazine spreads or print off pictures from the web and put up on my inspiration board. Whenever I can't find an outfit or need something to inspire me, I refer to my magnet board. It's a huge help!

  • Make life easy. Is there something you use every single day? Keep it out! You don't have to have a perfectly organized and clean space. Every single week I need the address directory for the Delightful Dozen. So, I printed out the address directory which is on a cute map and framed it by my desk! I refer to it daily and so not only does it work in a functional-way but also an aesthetic way! I'm also constantly using my calculator, so I keep it out and don't put it away. I also keep a cup full of things I need constantly instead of putting them into a drawer. My cup contains my favorite pens, a ruler, scissors, you name it.

  • Keep your space cozy. For me, that means the lighting is right, there are no crumbs on the carpet and things are organized. If something bugs you… like how too much natural light comes in through the window, purchase an inexpensive pair of blinds! Keeping your space cozy and up-to-par will encourage you to continue to visit the space and maintain the space. The more time you spend in your space, the better it will become.

Promoting sponsors

by Elizabeth, Delightfully Tacky

The basic reason that companies, shops, or other blogs will want to sponsor your blog is: they can get traffic from the ad placed on your blog. It's just advertising basics. The more traffic your blog gets, the more likely companies will want to sponsor your blog. Don't feel bad if a larger brand or company turns you down or stops sponsoring after a bit, it might just be because your blog doesn't draw in the number of clicks that they're looking for. They are, after all, paying you to get their ad clicked on. It might sound a little harsh, but it's business. I've had some advertisers stop sponsoring because I didn't give them enough clicks. Don't take it personally.
One of the good things about sponsorship, at least for me, is that it pushes me to be a better blogger. I want to create great content, not only because I want to have a good blog, but also because I like the companies and shops and blogs that sponsor me and I would love to be able to send traffic their way!
A good way to support your sponsors while still staying true to yourself (and not becoming a blogger whose posts are only dedicated to shilling their sponsor's wares) is by incorporating your sponsor into your posts in ways that are natural, and also by doing it sparingly. This shouldn't be too hard if you're taking on sponsors that reflect who you are and the products you love.

Some tips!

1) Create a "wish list" post and include some sponsored items that you love! (Remember: if you are only working with sponsors you are passionate about, this will be SO easy) This is fun to do at the beginning of a new season when you're craving new things for the changing climate.

2) Give them a shout out on Twitter or Facebook! This is fun to do if you're window shopping and find something you really love. I like to tweet stuff like, "Ah! I love this dress from @shopruche! So pretty. http//...." I usually do this anyway, not even thinking that it's a promotion. It's a great way to share little things you find with your readers.

3) Inform your readers of a really good sale they are having or a promotion that will be expiring soon. Or, if your sponsor has a special discount code they've created for your readers, let your readers know about it! Tweet, Facebook, mention it in a post... let your readers know that they get a special discount for following your blog!

4) If you love one of your sponsor's clothing articles, wear it on the blog and link to their website! Your readers will trust the company if they see you wearing one of their items and you really do love it. Note that readers will notice if you're wearing something totally out of character just to promote a sponsor, always be yourself!

5) Don't ever give praise to an item if you hate it, or if it's bad quality. Readers won't want to read awful, snarky reviews… just be honest. Say you received a dress from a sponsor and it's poor quality, that's all that's necessary. If a sponsor continually sends you poor quality items, it might be time to consider removing them from sponsorship. You don't want to be promoting a brand or shop that you don't feel confident is in the best interests of your readers. People will buy things from them and then wonder why you support such a low-quality brand. This has never happened to me though, so I don't feel like it's a frequent occurance.