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Does Anyone Still Read Fashion Blogs?

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Hey guys, long time no blog post eh? Who reads fashion blogs anyway?

My site was recently hacked, I think that was a sign for me to get my backside back on here, otherwise, silly sites will try to take over.

Jokes apart, let’s really talk about my hiatus. Apart from me enjoying life and the beautiful summer we’ve been having in the UK, a lot of changes have happened. Not bad changes – perhaps, I should say growth.

Who reads fashion blogs?

Firstly, I’ve been thinking, who reads fashion blogs nowadays. I no longer enjoy reading fashion blogs – what people wore, how they wore it, what they love about it blah blah blah. I could blame this on Instagram, personal preference, taste in clothes, lifestyle… a whole lot of stuff. But deep down, I know I no longer enjoy reading a whole lot of 300 words or more on ‘how to wear a polka dot skirt’ or the most amazing leopard print someone just bought – so why would I want to churn out that kind of content on my blog?

Just provide me with the link, if I like I’ll buy, I don’t need many words to convince me about an item.

Please tell me I’m not on my own on this.

Pink Tulle Ruffle Skirt

Wearing: Shirt – H&M (old), Skirt – Twist x Turn, Belt – Asos (old), Shoes – Topshop (old), Bag – Valentino

How we consume and digest fashion content has evolved a lot since I started my blog and I’m all ok with that, I’ve subconsciously realized, I have also evolved and moved on.

Secondly, call it writer’s block, uninspired, or whatever, I no longer quite really writing. Oops, did I just say that? Most people start a blog because they enjoy writing. Maybe that’s just my assumption. BUT, when I write, regardless of what I’m writing about, I feel or experience something. For someone who doesn’t enjoy writing, it’s quite contradictory. Guess that’s where inspiration meets desire. I write when I’m inspired. I would rather wait and have something to write about, even if it happens once a month.

Thirdly and finally. Who even reads blogs especially fashion blogs? Back to my first question right? This is a constant question in the blogosphere. Do people still read blogs? The answer is YES. The percentage might have dropped significantly, but I strongly believe people still do.

Readership depends on a lot of things –  the type of content you produce, who you are writing for, to age group, demographics, and a whole lot of statistics.

As I mentioned earlier, I no longer enjoy core fashion blogs (not all, depends on a lot of things including my mood). I turned to catch up with one of the blogs I used to enjoy reading only to myself moving along fast, looking for something perhaps more engaging. Like a life update sorta post. The type of blogs I read now varies a lot, but I enjoy lifestyle posts, personal experiences with certain situations, posts that stimulate my thoughts. For example, I like Vix Meldrew’s content.  I would like to give more examples, but I currently don’t have any go-to blog.

It’s great to have varied content I suppose. No one is one dimensional. It’s about what you feel, what you enjoy and what your audience reacts to best.

I feel like it’s time to stir in a new direction. Now, the difficult part is this. FASHION is a core part of my blog. I mean, it’s called A Style Diary for goodness sakes, what is style without fashion. I’m yet to find a creative way to interpret this so that it’s still meaningful. I love the name of my blog and not ready for a change yet.

To conclude this post, I would love to know what kind of content or posts you guys are into. Do you feel fashion posts are still as relevant?

Pink Tulle Ruffle Skirt summer tulle skirt Reads Fashion Blogs pink tulle skirt midi pink tulle skirt

Personal Journal | Best of Both Worlds

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A personal journal. So, this is real life…

I decided to share a part of my career journey on my blog. I was a bit uncertain if to write this or not, but I hope it inspires someone and encourages you to work hard towards your personal goals. Whatever your personal goals may be. (It’s a bit lengthy, on so fasten your seat belt!)

Best of Both Worlds

I’m nowhere near where I want to be, but one step closer. Every step counts…

A little over 3 years ago, if anyone had told me I would ever go back to wanting to become an accountant, I would have laughed in their face. Like really?

No part of me likes studying. I don’t think I ever studied throughout my university or school days. I listened in class, attendance was 100%, took notes and skimmed through the textbook before exams. Memorised what I could and paid a little more attention to stuff I found difficult. This didn’t work for every module, I had 1 re-sit in my second year of uni which deterred me from school and studying. It was so traumatic for me, it felt like the worst thing that could happen. I think I developed a fear of failure, could not wait for uni to be over and done with. Eager to finish uni and do something more fun with my life. That was back in 2006, I was only 20, little did I know.

After my Accounting degree, I worked in retail, customer services to be precise – from shop floor, sales assistant to supervisor to e-commerce customer service supervisor, then moved into fashion PR. I convinced myself that that was what I wanted to do. Moving from customer services to PR felt like an upward movement in the right direction but it didn’t work out. I left my first PR job in November 13 and was hanging in limbo for about 8 months, not really knowing what to do next.

I did a bit of this and that, but PR is a fast paced job, a few months out and could already be off your ball game. That was also the time that digital media saw so much growth and everything was moving at such a fast pace. I could not catch up and my passion was dying as time passed. It even got worse with the next ‘pr job’ which I did for only a month. On CV, my experience probably looked good but I did struggle to nail another PR role.

Retrospectively,  I genuinely didn’t want to go back to PR, but I still wanted to work in fashion. Since I had convinced myself that that was what I wanted to do, I felt like I was giving up on something and not knowing what next was a bit scary. With no experiences to go into anything else apart from customer services or PR. I did some soul searching during my 8 months of unemployment, and I had the opportunity to work on my blog and social media. Involuntary full-time blogger. It’s the best thing I could have ever done for my blog. That was when I finally started seeing some growth. 

I finally decided to go back to everything I had spent almost 8 yrs running away from. Of course, this made my parents very happy. Bearing in mind I was an international student and they paid about 8K per year for me to do this degree!

3 years after leaving PR, I now work as an accountant. I had to start all over again. I started as an intern and within 3 months of my internship I found a full-time job – my fast learning skills came to play. I’ve climbed a couple of steps up the ladder in the short while. The best part of it is that I’ve worked with the best team and people since I started my new career path.

Now, the very ambitious Banke emerged again, being an accountant for me, is ok, but why stop at that? Why not become certified or chartered – reach the peak of my career while I can. I decided I needed this challenge not only for the opportunities it will present, but for my self-confidence. I needed to reassure myself that I had made the right career move. After many years of being off the field, I needed something to knock my confidence back in, I felt a little rusty.

Though my degree granted me a few exemptions from all the papers I need for my full qualification, passing my first exam is potentially one of the best feelings I’ve had in a long time. I sat my paper in December. The 3 months of preparation for just 1 exam was so bloody emotional (so sorry to all the amazing people that had to cope with me). I had panic attacks, I questioned my decision, I questioned my blog which had nothing to do with anything, I hated the things I loved including my blog. I was just all over the show!! The month wait for the result was almost as painful too 😂.

My blog connects me to my passion which is fashion… and, I can occasionally pour my heart out like I’ve done in this post. It also makes me feel connected to a different world, and I haven’t lost my soul to working 9-5. I’m one step closer to becoming a certified chartered accountant which gives me a different kind of soul satisfaction. Not the most exciting career, but I think I’ll stick around for a few more years…

I’ve worked hard and prayed even harder, but when I finally let go of the life I planned and accepted a new one, I finally feel like I’m in a place where no longer have to work so hard but work smarter and everything will fall into place. Working smart is something I learned in the last couple of years from my CFO :).

I GENUINELY feel like I’ve got best of both worlds and equally as open to every opportunity my blog presents!

Link to outfit in SHOP

 

How I Do It

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Following the questions I had from my Blogging and Working Full-Time post, I’ve decided to share some light on How I do It. I’m not going to lie and say, it’s so easy, but it’s do-able – and yes, it’s possible to be successful at doing both – working, studying or any other life choices combined with being a blogger.

Off Shoulder Tunic

Time Management

I think this is one thing everyone struggles with. Having a routine or structure works for me. In saying this, I hate anything that’s too restrictive, so, I’m flexible when planning and my self-imposed restrictions feel nothing like being in a military camp. I know the things I can’t accommodate or afford to do, so I’ve had to compromise on them. The moment more time is spent on things that are not of high importance, the less time I can spend on the important things – priorities.

Prioritize

For my blog to thrive, I know I have to spend some time on social media, attend some events for networking, do some research, shoot, edit pictures etc. Going to work is the only thing I can’t be flexible with. Knowing what’s most important and the order of importance is a major key. I love blogging, I enjoy doing it, I like every aspect of it, I never want it to feel like a job or a chore, it’s an amazing feeling seeing a baby grow, my blog is my baby, but I need to set my priorities, get the right balance for growth.

Strengths over Weaknesses

Funny, I used to wonder why this question came up at interviews. It’s a broad topic to go into but, one of the things that will get you far at what you do is what you are good at. What aspect of blogging do you enjoy doing or are you good at – use it.

Never Limit Your Abilities

This I don’t practice to the ‘T’, but if there is anything I constantly have to remind myself, it is THIS – “Never Limit Your Abilities Bankè”. This gives the correct mind frame and motivation to push a little further, the moment I push myself, I realize I’m already miles ahead of where I was a minute ago.

All easier said than done right? It’s all work in progress, but everything starts from what you tell yourself every day.

White Tunic with bell sleevesOff shoulder bell sleeve top Dior SunglassesOff shoulder tunic_white details_white tunicWearing:

Off Shoulder Bell Sleeve Tunic (old) – Chicwish

Necklace – Maria Black

Sandals & Bag (old) – New Look

Sunglasses – Dior

signature-A Style Diary-Bankè

Blogging And Working Full Time

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I’ve had many people ask why I haven’t taken the leap of faith, packed up the 9 to 5 and go 24 hours on blogging. Yes, 24 hours because that’s the reality of being a full-time blogger, there aren’t really any days off. Blogging full time is the ultimate goal for most bloggers nowadays, as fancy as it looks and sounds, why haven’t I gone blogging full time then?

Firstly, why should this be in question, since when did blogging full-time become a measure of how successful you are as a blogger/individual, why should this be every blogger’s goal? Not blogging for a living doesn’t make you less of a legit blogger, e.g. because you are studying part-time doesn’t mean you aren’t a student or better still, as hardworking as a full-time student. 

multi striped trousers relaxed trousers from banana republic Striped trousers and t-shirt

I’m not a full-time blogger so I can’t give tips on how to become one, but being content with blogging and working full-time is crucial, and not falling under the pressure of doing something you aren’t ready for. Making a career change should be a personal choice, do it at your own time. So, while at it…

  1. I actually like my job. Maybe it’s the company, maybe it’s my team, maybe it’s a combination of all of it…but I don’t have any reasons to leave my job at the moment. Yes, there are days I want to pull my duvet over my head and go back to sleep or not go to work, but that’s life. If you love what you do at this stage of your life, maybe you are still in the right place. Keeping a positive mental attitude is key, which brings me to my next point. 
  2. Mindset and readiness. I did play with the idea of blogging full time a during my career transition a couple of years ago, but I felt uneasy with myself. The reality of being a ‘new’ full-time blogger may involve working all day in pj’s and casual garments, from sofa to bed with no one to actually talk to. I’m not very keen on adjusting to that lifestyle right now. It’s good to have clarity of mind and knowing what you want, for yourself. Not just because everyone is doing it and it seems or looks fancy.
  3. Uncertain future of blogging. The truth is, the game is a new territory but it’s evolving very rapidly, especially in the past couple of years. Who knows what’s next, once upon a time, we were mere bloggers, now there are influencers, celebrities, micro and macro bloggers you name it. Having a full-time job positions me in a good position of an observer as well as an active player. While many may feel the need for competitiveness, having a full-time job slightly removes me from all that. I can select which bands I want to collaborate with and do things with less aggression and more ease.
  4. I take blogging seriously, but wait…seriously? Yes. I take my time to edit my pictures the way I want it and how I want it. I know my strengths and weaknesses. I may not be great at coming up with captions, but I’m good at other things.
  5. Maintaining a good lifestyle balance. How does this have anything to do with blogging and working full-time? It’s easy to want to give up on one or the other, especially when keeping a balance on both jobs become tougher. Amidst of all that, if you don’t put yourself first or love yourself and maintain a balanced lifestyle, it’s easy to let things slip.Take time off from work and take time off from blogging. Everyone deserves a break, it’s crucial.

In saying this, maintaining high blogging standards is still key. I’ve managed to find a small voice and an audience in the big digital world while working full time and blogging on the side/the rest of the time.layered necklace_details tshirt and striped trousers Striped Trousers_Banana Republic relaxed striped pants blogging and working full-time street style_relaxed multi striped trousers Relaxed Striped Trousers white t-shirt and striped trousers

White t-shirt – H&M

Striped Trousers – Banana Republic

Sandals – Zara

Sunglasses – Chanel

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