Graziella has a fashion and family blog out at Sweet Pea, Apple of My Eye. Having seen a couple of my comments out at Ramona Chrisstea’s blog, she flattered me with a request to review and critique her work. Looking at her most recent post, I found myself thinking that any mom that can get kids to participate like they do must have a really constructive relationship with them. I was also impressed by the thoughts she shared on Father’s Day.
This captures our conversation back and forth up to this point, and creates a space for us to continue to dialog:
I love your insightfullness! Maybe you can look over some of my posts and give me your honest, constructive opinion of them?
Thanks for the compliment, Graziella. I’ll be happy to take a look after I have lunch!
Sure no problemo! Take your time!
Lol. We’re chasing each other’s responses around.
I didn’t know whether to post this on your home page, as it brings some criticism – hopefully constructive, as you requested.
OK – first off, you have a beautiful family, and the affection and bonds are really evident. Congratulations and GOOD JOB!
I’d recommend being a little more selective with the shots, and trying to work the text around them. Your experience of the environment would also be a plus, particularly when it involves elements that are unique or personal . For example, the rusty smiley face in the last post with your children, or the horse farm in “A Little Country, a Little Rock and Roll.”
As a example, you might look at Ramona Crisstea’s blog (ramonacrisstea.com). What comes from her writing is a sense that she’s sharing a journey with others. I think that you and Ramona have different stories at this point, and so you might gain a lot without risk of becoming “me-too.”
Your post on father’s day reveals that capacity. I’d like more of that! While not everybody can look as adorable as your family does, there are a lot of fashion blogs. The ones that spark my interest are those that relate fashion to the life journey.
So, for example – how did your little boy react to having a daddy tie put on him?
Thanks for the follow. If this is helpful, let me know and I’ll follow back to see how things develop.
THANK YOU. And you know what, I actually found you on Ramona’s blog. I saw your comment and figured you’re the guy I need to talk to. You are so right. I have been battling with myself trying to incorporate my first love, which is writing and my intellectual side, all while hosting a fashion blog. All the advice I’ve gotten in the past was to keep it short and simple, a fashion blog is one thing and a journal is another. But I felt confined! After seeing her blog I saw how you can add pieces of your mind and your own two cents along the way without it becoming too much or boring, and without the risk of losing the reader’s attention. What a fantastic idea to incorporate more of the experience of the surroundings, that’ll be easy to do. I was also thinking maybe write under some photos as if it’s a story book (similar to hers). I love the handwriting quotes, I love expressing my unique view and beliefs of the world, but I didn’t know how to incorporate Fashion, Parenting, & Writing all in one without losing a direct focus or target audience. Like you said, my family and my babies is the one thing that separates me from all the other fashion bloggers. I’ve been told to drop the kid fashion stuff and just stick with me, but that’s ridiculous too. Why can’t I be a fashionable woman, a mother, and a writer all at once? I love my kids so much and even in my about me page it says I’m doing this all for them, and it’s true so I could never think about NOT having them involved in my blog. I only just started on Oct 1st so people and advice like you REALLY help. Thanks a million, I hope we can keep in touch and you can see if I improve as time progresses 😊
It’s the exploration of fashion as expressive symbolism that is the key, as I value it. It’s a hard call, because ultimately it’s about selling things, but here’s an anecdote for you: After my sons saw Fast and Furious 6, I asked whether there was any character development. They stopped and thought, and said “Hey, now that you mention it, there was! Wow, that was different!” Which elicited my observation, “I guess that the producers have brought the audience along far enough that they can handle it.” So don’t worry about fitting into a box.
Absolutely. And I was hoping to express the same ideal in the future posts I have with my daughter where a lot of what I’m wearing has nothing to do with fashion per say at all, but with being in tune and in love with her as she serves as an inspiration to me. For example, there’s some necklaces I have that are pastel colored and have hot air balloons on them. I only bought that because of my daughter, it reminded me of her. And the story and pictures that I envision came to mind immediately as soon as I saw the necklace. Because it reminded me of her, and through her all these thoughts and motivations were born, as it always is constantly in every aspect of my life, not just fashion.
And there’s a lot that you might be able to do in the way of relating fashion to the preparation of your children for their life transitions, or for parenting them through their joys and traumas. In other words, making it about dressing them in what they need, rather than dressing them to please us.
Not that they shouldn’t look adorable. And, being the kid that wore stripes and checks to school, not that I have much real-life experience in the matter…
An administrative detail: I may try to relocate this conversation to a new blog post (“Meeting Graziella”), just so it doesn’t distract from the topic of this post, which was really important to me.
Ok you do that or let me know where I can respond back because I really like your thoughts and wanted to not only thank you again but chip in and elaborate a little further and see what you think 😊