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18 April 2015

sidebar sweethearts | april

when i first started this blog - just over three years ago (totally missed my blogversary!), i definitely, one hundred percent, hand on heart did not do it to make money. in fact, i couldn't have started it to make money, because the three-years-ago me didn't even know there was money to be made out of blogging. i maybe kinda understood that 'big bloggers' would get some clothes or bags or shoes for free, and that was pretty cool, and how awesome would it be if someone gave me a dress or a bag or a pair of shoes for free? pretty effing cool. hell, three years on and i still get excited when someone offers me some damn shoes. point is - not in it for the money. not then, not now, likely not ever.

that's not to say i wouldn't love someone to pay me to blog. that would be a dream come true, but... i don't know why anyone would. my blog is not niche in any way, it's rarely topical, and certainly isn't informative or helpful in any way. what it is, is a collection of stories about me. what i wore, what i ate, where i travelled, what i did at the weekend, or who i wish i could dress like this month. but you know what? that seems to be ok with you guys. my readers. the people keeping me going.

in fact, it seems to be ok by a number of other bloggers too, so much so that they've asked if it would be ok if they advertised their blogs on my blog. you've probably seen them over there on the left hand side. the line up rarely changes, as for the longest time, i would really only promote my favourite bloggy friends on there and wasn't really interested in trying to make money from my space of the internet. and while i'm still not interested in that, i realise that over the last three years, i have turned this little plot into something of a commodity. maybe not as very big or important one, but it does have some sway with the googlebots. so, it's only fair, right?

this month has seen my favourite line up yet, and i can't wait to introduce them to you...
i have been reading jenna's blog 'dorkface' for some time. years, maybe, i couldn't tell you when i first started reading along, but i do know that i've fallen in love with her writing style and fresh views and incredibly cute styling time and time again, and i know you will have no trouble doing the same. she had a birthday this week too - mighty 27 - and blogged about the overwhelming kindness she was treated with after the big day. i loved reading how emotional the kindness of strangers made her.
laura was an online friend before she was a real-life one, and that kind of happened around the same time she became my boss. that's right, she's the force behind my move into the world of digital pr, and i will both blame and thank her for the rest of my life now. even after she moves on to bigger and bigger things, this girl will hold a place in my heart - for bigging me up and believing in me when i wasn't sure anyone else could any more, and for allowing me the privilege of being involved in her wedding ceremony earlier this year. her wedding gift from the team was a voucher for secret escapes, and recently she and the mister headed off to tuscany for a long weekend of wine and cheeses which obviously now has me pining for an italian holiday...
as does jac, of 'bumpkin betty' whose post about packing hacks for lazy girls had be begging the question "where are you off to noooow?" answer: venice. ugh! so unfair! i am all about the travel hacks personally, and i'm sorry - even though my wardrobe may not be as stylish, polished, and as well  put together as hers, there are some fab tips in there that will work across every wardrobe. will definitely be referring back to this post come june when i'm off to portugal for a long weekend. in the meantime, i will be keeping eyes on all her pre-wedding posts, as once she and the mister designed their own engagement ring, i knew this wedding would be one unique and original affair.
toni's blog 'lemon freckles' is another that has been well-read by me for the longest time. in fact, i remember when her blog was brand new and she was only just dipping her toes into the community, so it's such an honour be able to host her button on my side bar. she's one crafty lass too, and not only has launched an etsy design shop this year, but has also started building custom blog layouts and such too - this one she created for floral frosting has me pining for an update. if pastels and vintage wares and pugspugspugs are your thing, you're going to fall in love with lemon freckles the way i have. (you're welcome)
this week, my good pal little miss katy has shared some great pieces of content, which.. isn't unusual; katy's blog is one that makes me think about hanging up my own blogging hat, because i'll never be as young or enthusiastic or as creative as her, and the time and effort she puts into her blog is admirable. her blog is bright and colourful, her posts are witty and well written, and she is one twinkly little character. i am lucky to call her a friend, and am so, so, so proud to see how she's developed her online space into a real source of inspiration. like the post she shared this week on how to pamper yourself. simple tips, but... i definitely don't do any of this enough - do you?
donna is one quarter of the team that we have affectionately named 'the mustard squad' because of a four-way mutual love (at the time) for everything mustard, and also one fifth of the current frock swap 15 line-up, so someone i am happily in communication with a lot from day to day. we've been blogging pals since just about day-dot (i think we've been blogging about the same length of time), and one that i am pleased to count in my real-life circle of friends too. other than the necessary pick-me-up and her northern words of wisdom (that sometimes need explaining better), donna's blog 'polka dot pink' is where i go for thrifting inspiration. she has the absolute best eye for second-hand treasure, and i was blown away this week when this nautical number made its way onto her blog for me to ogle and pine over.
kooky kirsty is another member of the mustard squad, and definitely the most ginger of us all. i guess that means she can pull the colour off a lot better than the rest of us, but still. this wee bonnie lass (she's scottish, in case you missed that) is another that i am lucky to call a real-life friend, and one who i'd be more than happy to have in my arsenal of big-mouth babes. she's a right pocket rocket, but she does have a way with words, and that's precisely why i love her blog 'indigo buttons', and reading about her day-to-day outings. her partner adam lives pretty far away from her, but when they hang out, i bloody love hearing their stories. this one about a dinner out in edinburgh had me in stitches, from just her choice of words alone. och aye, she's alright.

special menions this month go out to cheekyboo emporium who've just rebranded and now have an amaaaazing new logo and store-layout even more swoonworthy than the product within, and to lisa of la la faux bois whose hair now looks like an easter egg, and whose outfits are never anything other than adorable, inspiring, and make me want to be her. so, there's that.

a massive thank you to these ladies who have all been bloody lovely to have around the place; they're mostly all house-broken now, and tidy up after themselves. a couple of them even come with tea and cake, which is really quite nice, seeing as i'm the host! if you're interested in hearing more about how you can join (or replace.. mu haha!) them in the coming months, head over to my sponsorship page for all the details, or shoot me an email to discuss what you're after.