Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Guest Post: Michelle of Locked Out

Another one of my blogging friends, Michelle of Locked Out, is posting here today about how she has learnt from blogging.

How fashion blogging helped me graduate from college

I graduated from college on Saturday, May 21! Can you believe it? I can’t. In my head, I’m still in high school… I can’t be an adult, can I?

I’ve had my blog, Locked Out, through most of college. I started my blog in April 2009, at the tail end of my sophomore year. The following August, I was picked as one of the first CollegeFashion.net interns. In the past year, my blog has both shrank (I closed the original Locked Out and sort of restarted on Blogger, for many reasons) and grown. I feel stronger as a blogger, and as a writer. And I know what without my fashion blog, I would not be the person I am today.

1. Fashion blogging made me realize that I want to work in magazines. I used to want to be a reporter. Really. Imagine this girl as a reporter. It’d be ridiculous! I’m just not serious enough, nor can I keep a poker face in strange/sad/funny situations! By entering the blogging world, it made me realize that while I don’t necessarily want to be a fashion journalist, I do want to work in the magazine world.

2. Blogging kept me creative. School can be so incredibly draining! I am an incredibly anxious, OCD person, so sometimes school is like my kryptonite. I just get really stressed out. As a Creative Writing major, I was constantly writing for English classes… and sometimes I felt so completely drained by it. But blogging kept me creative. It provided an outlet for me beyond schoolwork, where I could be creative and independent. It helped me stay sane.

3. Blogging gave me a supportive community. There is nothing more comforting than tweeting something like, “Today, I feel like a complete idiot because I did awful on an exam…” and getting replies from people who have been through the exact same thing. There are so many college girls with fashion blogs (and a lot of postgrads too!) and they can be very helpful when it comes to dealing with the stress and confusion of college.

4. Blogging made me more confident. By focusing on my appearance and my writing at the same time, I became a more confident student. Blogging has helped me to get internships and writing gigs, which is really a blessing. I also became a more confident person in general. When I walk into any job interview or classroom or whatever, I know I look like I can do anything because I’m put together. And that feels good.

5. Blogging made me happy. Period! That is the most important thing, right? Blogging, even when I was having a terrible week or was feeling particularly stressed or sad or lonely, gave me an outlet and it made me happy to just be able to write. To take some outfit photos and write a little bit. Being happy is sometimes hard for me (anyone with anxiety problems can relate!) but I really credit blogging with helping me stay happy, even when I was having a rough time.

It is so strange to be a college graduate! I credit so many of my experiences for the last few years to fashion blogging, especially in the past few months. Joining the Lovely Ones, meeting lots of new friends, and watching my little blog grow has been amazing. When I first started my blog, I intended to delete it after I graduated… but now I just can’t! I’ve dedicated so much to my blog and I love every part of being a fashion blogger. Without my blog, my college experience would have been much different and much more boring.

If you have a fashion blog, how has it helped you grow as a person?

Monday, 30 May 2011

Guest Post: Laura of Only Half Dressed

My next post is from Laura of Only Half Dressed. Laura and I have actually known each other online since we were 13, so it's so cool that we've reconnected through our style blogs!!

Top & Shorts: New Look |  Tights: Japan | Shoes: Primark | Necklace: Australia | Ring: DIY
Hey!! I'm Laura from Only Half Dressed and I am so pleased that Charlotte asked me to do a guest post.  I knew exactly what outfit I was going to photograph straight away!  As Charlotte is currently living in America and doing a bit of travelling and I've recently got back from travelling  I wanted an outfit to sum this up.

I went shopping with my boy straight after I got back from my time away and he decided I HAD to buy this top and as soon as I saw it I knew I had too.  I love the print and birds always remind me of travelling.  And of course there are a few items such a the tights and necklace that I picked up on my own travels. So whenever I wear this top it always reminds me of travelling, which normally also leads me to spending a few hours browsing cheap flights online - only to determine yet again that I can't afford another trip yet!

Do any of you have the travel bug? Or an item which reminds you on a recent trip abroad?

Saturday, 28 May 2011

Guest Post: Amber of Modest June

My second guest post is from Amber Rose of Laughing with Broken Eyes. Amber's blog is so beautiful, you should definitely check it out.

Sweet lemonade, warm sun, cool grass.. summer.
The cement is warm beneath my bare feet, and the sun is beating down upon my face, my shoulders. I taste warmth.

To me, summer has always represented freedom. Even with work, even with planned events, there is something so liberating about stepping outside to warmth, to light; there is such beauty to it, however simple it may be. It's magical.

Some of my favorite summer activities include (but are certainly not limited to):
  • sipping lemonade (I really only drink lemonade in the summer)
  • running through sprinklers in the front yard
  • riding my bicycle
  • flying a kite
  • picnics
  • swimming
  • staying up all night by a campfire (incredibly cliche)
  • writing, writing, writing
  • eating lemon ice and snow cones
  • lazy days of Audrey Hepburn movie marathons
  • dressing up entirely different and pretending to be an entirely different person
oh, I could go on and on!


Outfit Details: dress: Modcloth // shoes: F21 //hat: Target

What are some of your favorite things to do in the summertime?
Love Always,
Amber Rose

Friday, 27 May 2011

Guest Post: Annebeth of The Styling Dutchman

Annebeth of The Styling Dutchman is blogging for me today. Her style is so vibrant and fun, I had to follow her blog. I am so happy to call her one of my blogging friends!!

Hi guys! Charlotte is still doing awesome elsewhere instead of blogging or, say CRAMMING for exams (me, jeally? no wai) so here I am to break regular programming! My job today is to be myself, so here I am with one of my SIGNATURE (yeah I totally invented these) outfit posts. I'm taking this opportunity to debut the pics I took of my pretty little sailordress a few weeks ago! Didn't use them yet for god knows what reason. I love them even though they're a bit pixelated :)

Lovely right? The second part of my post is about me asking your opinion: is this too childish/costumey for a 24 year old (as I will probably be once this guest post goes up)? And if so: any ideas on how to make it more "fashion" rather than "fetisj"? Haha why are all my posts so dirty? Anyway, let me know about your tips! I guess I just love letting my inner child run wild ;-) 

 dress: Chicstar.com
flats: Sacha
sunnies: Claire's
nails: Model's Own @ River Island

Thanks so much to Charlotte for asking me to do a guest post for her! Sorry I don't have more interesting stuff to tell you guys, but it's after midnight over here and I'm anxiously awaiting the Master Chef Australia finale, so I'm going to leave y'all with my outfit and my question! Hope this is good, Charles! ;-)

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Guest Post: Sian of Rebel Angel

My first guest post is from Sian of Rebel Angel. Sian is one of my best blogging friends and I'm really excited to meet up with her this Summer!!

Hi there Girl Next Door Fashion readers!!
I'm Sian from Rebel Angel, a personal style and fashion blog. I was so excited when Charlotte asked me to guest post over at her blog because I absolutely love her sense of style and writing, so I feel so lucky to be up on her blog!
My blogging usually consists of daily outfits, but I've recently started a new feature called 'No Make Up Mondays', basically I try not to wear make up one day a week and I decided to start posting my outfit that day on my blog. So far I've only done a few, and I was going to do a whole new outfit minus make up for this post, but alas, I have exams right now and no time to do a good shoot, so I thought I'd show you some old ones and talk to you about why I think it's an important aspect of my blogging.
So I may not look entirely perfect in these photos, but I've received so many compliments for them, particularly the fact that I'm not wearing make up, and you know what? It feels pretty good not to wear it for a while! It definitely gives your skin a bit of a break, time to air and whatnot.
I think it's definitely a good thing for my readers to see me every once in a while not so 'done up'. I know there are a few bloggers who will put on an outfit and do their make up just so that they can get good photos for their blog, but I like mine to be real. I don't look perfect everyday (...actually maybe I don't ever look perfect) but I'm totally fine with that, because no one does. And so far no one has insulted me for not wearing make up! So I take that as a sort of unsaid compliment =D
Now I know it's not for everyone, but I think sometimes it's nice to do something different. It makes me feel so much more confident to put myself out of my comfort zone and do something I'm not completely confident doing at the time, but later I feel so good about.
So in every one of the photos above I'm not wearing any make up. Do you think you would give it a go? I'm now considering starting a feature of photos of other bloggers getting involved in this by sending me their make up-less photos and doing a little interview (if they want!) about not wearing make up and how they feel about it, so if you like what I'm doing (or like the look of any of my outfits!) don't hesitate to check out my blog and get in contact with me!

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Chitown: Part II

Here is part two of my trip to Chicago (Part One is here). This is expectedly super photo-heavy, just FYI. By the time you read this is, I will be heading to San Francisco. I have a few guest posts coming up (I originally had more planned, but I stupidly gave the bloggers the wrong date to have their posts in by, so hopefully we'll be getting some more guest posts when I get home too!!) and I'll back back on the 2nd June. Have a great week and I'll see you when I get back!!

I decided to do a photo an hour on Saturday, but a few hours had more than one photo. There are also a couple of photos from Sunday here too. Enjoy :]]
First order of the day- makeup!! As you can see I use Maybelline foundation, blusher and mascara and Urban Decay eyeliner and liquid liner. This is pretty standard for my day-time makeup.

Breakfast!! Hostel breakfast was included and pretty standard. Bagels, bread, cereal and fruit. I had a cup of tea (Lipton, unfortunately) and a bagel with cream cheese, and Erick got me a banana because when he went up to get his breakfast he saw there were only two left and he knew I'd want one. What a sweetie.


 Quite a few photos taken at 10, as we went up the John Hancock Observatory. The audio tour was really, really interesting and kept up occupied for a while, but I was a little disappointed you couldn't properly go outside outside like you can at the Rockefeller Center in New York. Nevertheless, it was a great view and these are just the tip of the iceberg- I took dozens of photos!!

Erick and I probably know every. single. bathroom in Chicago. I think we visited this one three times. There were a lot of bathroom breaks!!


After the tower, we headed down to Navy Pier and walked along it. I'm glad we got this picture because the one we had taken at the Observatory was bloody awful of both of us!!


 I totally only included this because he looks adorable.

And no trip to Navy Pier is complete without a ride on the Ferris Wheel!!


Chicago is not only famous for its pizza; Erick also tried a Chicagodog and an Italian Beef Sandwich.

Recharge, thanks to Starbucks.


This was where I had lunch. We walked for what seemed like forever to get here, but it was totally worth it. It  was a little falafel place called Falafill and I'd read about it in my Chicago guide book. Basically, you get a falafel wrap or a bowl (which was just falafel and lettuce) and then you get one free trip to the falafel bar. As you can see, the falafel bar had everything from cucumber and tomatoes to pickled ginger, tabbouleh, roasted beet salad and lots of kinds of dips and sauces. I felt so full afterwards but it was totally worth it!!

We walked down one of the super-hipster streets (which was choc-full of vintage and thrift stores) and stumbled across this vintage fair. It was super-weird (the changing room was just a little room that you had to walk through a photoshoot to get through), but I got a gorgeous leopard print pencil skirt for $10.

We had a little break in Millennium Park. I had Elle and some apple, and Erick had a slurpee and Reeses. Nom.

Found this lego Woody in a soon-to-be-opened Lego store.

In an attempt to save some money we got Chipotle for dinner. Nom.

I got kinda excited about these Goose-shaped pumps at the bar we stopped at for a drink before the comedy show.

This was the comedy show we went to go and see. It was super-funny and even better when Erick got pulled out of the audience. Erick hates attention and is probably the worst person you could pick to go up on stage, but he was a good sport!!


By Sunday, we'd pretty much done everything, and it was an insanely hot day so we just chilled out really. We went to the Austrian Bakery to get cakes (okay, Erick got breakfast food, I got cake) and went down to Union Station to deposit our bags. Then we went up for a drink at the John Hankcock Observatory Bar (I had some kind of martini, but it was super-strong, especially for 12pm!) and then headed back to salvage any of our leftover pizza and catch our bus. The bus was okay coming back, but we drove through a couple of storms. The internet was down so our plan to watch Netflix was scuppered, but we slept and played iPod scrabble instead!!

It was a great weekend, but definitely tiring!! I was glad to get back to Minnesota. But I've got it all again in a few days- I'm going to San Francisco for a week tomorrow!! But don't worry, you're in good hands. I have some fab guest posters for you while I'm away!!

See you soon!!

Charlotte xxx