Ask and you shall receive. I’ve been getting a lot more DMs as of late with questions – and while I do try to answer them on Instagram as I receive them, sometimes I forget, or they fall through the cracks. In an effort to do right by you guys, I’m answering some of your frequently asked questions as well as drawing the curtain back a bit on my life. How do I get to travel so much? What is that dang nail polish color? Those slippers, where are they from? And that app you always use? I’m answering it all here.
What color is your nail polish / lipstick / where is that necklace from you’re always wearing? If you’ve asked me about my nail polish, lipstick, or necklace, within the last few months, here’s your answers. I am a total creature of habit and tend to wear the same things over and over again – which makes this easy to answer! The nail polish I’ve been wearing for weeks and weeks on end is a gel that I get done at my local nail salon. The color is 466 by Kiara (also available in regular polish). If you’re not into gel, or looking for a more natural option, J Hannah has the Ghost Ranch. The lipstick I wear regularly is Stardust by KOSAS, and the necklace I wear daily is either my Gemini Necklace or this Irish Farthing Necklace – both by Chupi.
What app do you use to edit your stories? And what app do you use to plan your feed? This is one I’ve been getting a lot. For my stories, it’s an app called Unfold, and I love it! And to organize my feed and plan out posts, I use Mosaico, but Planoly is great too!
How do you edit your photos to have a consistent feed? And do you buy objects / clothing based on your color scheme? I wrote a blog post on this last Summer with my usual method for editing, which you can read here. Since then, I developed my own pack of filters (!!!) for the app A Color Story. The pack of filters is called Fawn, and my favorite one is Suede, which can also be used on stories. Occasionally I use presets on Lightroom if I’m having trouble with a photo – Sarah Loven has tons of packs that I think are fantastic, available in her store here. Ive been using Paris Pack 2 when I feel like my photos need an extra oomph, but as I’m not too good with lightroom, I still have to edit them after.
I do tend to pick clothing and objects of a similar brown / warm color palette, but it’s not because I want my feed to look consistent – it’s because I just have a color palette I really love! My whole house and wardrobe tend to be shades of brown, mustard, camel, and ivory – but if I like something that isn’t in that color family, I don’t have a problem with mixing things up a bit.
How are you able to travel so much? Is it all vacations, or is this work? First of all – I totally understand why this is a question I’m asked frequently. From the outside, it really does look like I’m constantly traveling! But, in all honesty, looks can be a bit deceiving here. While I do travel a decent amount, it does appear to be lengthier trips on Instagram – mainly because I tend to shoot a lot more content on trips. Multiple outfits in a day, etc. So while I may only be on a trip for a weekend, I spread the content out over a longer time so that you’re not forced to see 8 posts in a day. In addition to that, my weekdays spent at home tend to be a little, well, not so exciting. So even days or weeks after a trip, when I don’t have something to post, I’ll often turn to some travel content I wasn’t able to post during the actual trip.
Now onto the second part – are these all vacations? The answer to this one is, not really. I use my blog as a means to travel, mostly because I was never able to afford it before! I love traveling, and my husband and I have found that we love traveling together. Score. So we usually will sit down, dream up a few places we’d like to go, and then try to make it happen. We fly places off season, and tend to like colder locations rather than beach-front properties, so usually we can get a great flight deal. We often pick places simply because we know we can get there without breaking the bank, and we can probably find a good hotel deal too.
Then, we figure out which brands would like to have some content shot on the trip – sometimes it’s multiple companies, sometimes only one. We bring that work along with us, and spend part of the time working (shooting photos, editing, creating content), and part of the time enjoying the location. We are really cautious about not getting jaded by the amount of travel, so we always try to really spend time enjoying each place in inexpensive ways. Window shopping, antique malls, dive bars, and local inexpensive restaurants are always on the agenda. It’s not all oysters and rosé, I swear!
How did you become a blogger? This is one I have a full blog post on here. It chronicles my journey from long before blogging was even a thing, and sort of explains a bit of why I am the way that I am!
What are the slippers I always see on your stories? Remember when I said my weekdays are pretty boring? Case in point – I’m usually in leggings and these slippers when I’m at home, because I’m all about comfort. And when I go outside? I’m the girl walking my dog in slippers (specifically this more durable pair). Working from home is far from glamorous!
Why have you gained so many followers recently? I’ve been experiencing some really great steady growth in the last few months, most of which I attribute to spending more time planning out outfits, editing photos more consistently, shooting more looks, and most important of all – travel! Just helps keep my feed interesting from an outside perspective and can give a new prospective follower more of a reason to click that follow button. AND I was lucky enough to receive a shoutout from the lovely Zoella just last week, which gained me a lot of new followers – all of whom seem really kind and lovely. If Zoella is the reason you’re following, leave a comment below. And Zoella, THANK YOU! You’re an angel!
Did I just see you on TV? I get this one a lot – “I’m watching [insert show] and there’s a girl who looks just like you!”. Chances are, if you’re sending me a message, you probably did in fact just see me on TV – I’m an actor too! You can check out my IMDb for a full list here, but the shows you guys mostly message about are : Criminal Minds, Unfriended, True Detective, Love Finds a Home and various music videos I’ve worked on in the last 10+ years.
What would you recommend to Instagrammers who want to start a feed like yours? I would say, variety is key. I really don’t like having myself in every photo, so I try to shoot interiors, food, drinks, flat lays – really a wide array of photos. I edit my photos with similar filters, and plan my posts out so they’re consistent and soothing to look at when you view my ‘grid’. I try not to have things that are repetitive, and like to have my photos tell a story – but sometimes things get out of whack and my feed isn’t exactly how I want it. Sometimes I obsess over how my page looks (Emily Vartanian posted about this too, so I know I’m not alone!) but I try not to let it get to me too much. Consistency is great, but letting it rule my life would be so draining!
What type of camera / lenses do you use for your pictures? Do you only use a camera or do you use your iPhone too? Most of my more professional photos are shot on a Canon Mark III with this 50mm lens. However if I’m out and about or if it’s a more simple photo, I use an iPhone 8+.
Did you approach companies to collaborate with in the beginning? When I first started blogging, I did occasionally send emails to companies I wanted to work with. This was in the early days of blogging, so I think it maybe wasn’t as big of a faux pas then – now it’s a bit of a sticky subject. Plenty of companies are sick of bloggers and influencers flooding their inboxes with requests for free clothing or discounts – no matter how innocent or kind the intentions of the blogger are! I understand the want to email companies, but I try to steer new bloggers away from doing this. Shop from companies you love, show them some love, and hopefully they return the favor! And if that’s not in your budget (it sure wasn’t in mine in the beginning!) check out secondhand shops and vintage for more affordable options.
When you travel, how do you find so many places to eat / shop / visit? This one is a really great question – and honestly, the answer is YOU! Before we visit a specific location, we do some internet research (Yelp, google maps, etc.) but for the most part, I rely on suggestions from followers! Before we board the plane, I’ll put out a call for suggestions on my Instagram, and ask for recommendations. You guys always always always give the best recommendations for everything from hotels and restaurants to great historic sites and day trips. You guys have helped plan my trip to the UK (part 1 here, part 2 here), Paris, Alaska, Barcelona, Iceland and so many more places. Thank you!!
What podcasts do you listen to? I love Podcasts and listen to them daily. I repeat episodes and have no problem revisiting podcasts I’ve already heard months before. I like true crime and history, so my go-tos are My Favorite Murder, Last Podcast on the Left, and the Dollop. My Dad Wrote a Porno is SO GOOD (but definitely not for the squeamish). I sometimes listen to Lore, but find it to be heavy handed at times, and cringe every time the host says “But you seeeee”dramatically. Other great listens are Casefile, Atlanta Monster, Serial, Dirty John, and The Fringe of It. I will say that while I do love Podcasts, when I’m working I’m likely to be listening to Max Richter or Dustin O Halloran.