Thursday, August 25, 2016

Fall Pinks

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Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Seattle Adventures - Explore Pike's Market

Jacket: Flirt Catalog c/o (similar here and here) / Sweater: Lole / Hat: F21 (last season similar here and here) / Sunnies: Nordstrom / Shoes: Target / Bag: Michael Kors / Pants: Anthro last season (similar herehere, and here)

Greetings from Seattle! Todd and I flew into this beautiful state on Sunday to explore the North West with Todd's aunt and uncle Dave & Liz. One of my favorite places to go so far was Pike's Market. I absolutely loved the hustle and bustle of the market, and the fast paced life of the city. Follow me on Snapchat or Instagram to see more of our adventures. Sorry this post is going to be short because we are going kayaking!!
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Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Layers & Lipstick Linkup: Mauve Lips & Chambray

Photography: Jamee Edwards
Top: Shein c/o / Lashes: Layers n Lashes / Pants: Anthro last season (similar here, here, and here) / Necklace: Kendra Scott c/o / Hat: Target / Bag: Make Me Chic c/o / Booties: Jeffrey Campbell / Lips: ABH-Rio

I've said this time after time before, but chambray is the ultimate wardrobe must. I have fallen victim to the chambray love affair.

Nothing to wear? 
Chambray. 
Can't find something to wear with any pair of pants? 
Chambray. 
Trouble finding a piece that will work with every season?
Chambray

In past posts I've featured some of my favorite chambray button down blouses, but I am madly in love with this top. The bell shape of this blouse is so fun, and gives this outfit a unique flare. What is your favorite way to wear chambray?

Big thanks to Hearts of Gold for being our cohost for the week. 

Featured Bloggers of the Week
Lee from Legallee Blonde looking gorgeous in the OTS trend / Rosie from Life is Just Rosie showing us how she does boho braids / @sincerelyy.a sharing our #layersandlipstick hashtag
Thank you for joining us at the Layers and Lipstick Link Up! We love sharing everything that is beauty and style, and want you to see how you rock the latest hair, makeup, and fashion trends by linking up with us. We absolutely love linkups as a way to connect and discover other amazing bloggers from all around the world. Each week bloggers may submit their posts on Tuesdays at midnight Arizona Mountain time to show their take on our beauty/fashion theme of the week. Each week we will pick our favorite bloggers who rocked our fashion/beauty trend the most, and feature them the following week.

We would love to see you linking up with us by sharing #layersandlipstick, and tagging @thejpetite @puckerupstyle on Instagram. We will feature our favorite Instagram accounts who feature our hashtag.

Next week our beauty theme will be "colored nails," and the fashion theme will be "booties."

Would you like to cohost the Layers & Lipstick Link Up? Email us jessica.marie.edmunds@gmail.com and let’s organize a date!
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Monday, August 22, 2016

The Complete Guide to Blogging - Part 2


To view other parts of the series click here

This is probably the hardest, and easiest part of the blogging series. Hey wait Jess, how can something be hard yet easy? I'm glad you asked. 

Getting organized is hard because it requires a level of constant planning, but once you achieve organization then the up keep is easy. Getting your blog organized will help keep you a step ahead, focused, and allow your blog to thrive. 


File Organization


All the work you do for your blog all ends up on your computer, and that alone can become chaotic. If you shoot a months worth of images, and place them all on your desk top then your workspace becomes a never ending search for the current blog post. Cluttered desk, cluttered mind. Wasted time and energy if you ask me. Try this. On your desktop create a file folder titled after your blog. Create another folder within the blog folder with the year. Within the year file folder create 12 files titled after the 12 months. 

J Petite note: What I like to personally do is title my folders 1-January, 2-Febuary, 3-March, ……. I like to do this so my months are in order. 

Once you’ve created a folder for the current month go in, and create multiple folders for each blog post you will be doing. I like to keep my blog 4-5 weeks ahead, and I will place each post images in a folder. I will then title each folder after the images inside the folder (i.e. Linkup-Chambray or Workout-Wednesday-Alo). Once I’ve decided what day of the month I will be designating each post, I will go back in and retitle the folder with the date in the front (i.e. 23-Linkup-Chambray). I like to do this so that no blog images go unused. 


Summary of file folder
J Petite —>
  2016 —>
1-January, 2-Febuary, 3-March, …. 8-August
I.E 8-August  —>
 3-Pizza , 5-Pink Lace Skirt , 10-Peach Maxi Dress


Editorial Calendar



You have now organized the technical aspect of planning your blog posts, now it’s time to implement the plan. A great way to visually see your months content, social media checklist, and maintain constancy is by using an editorial calendar. I have found that if you are serious about blogging then an editorial calendar will help you tremendously. By placing everything on a editorial calendar will help ensure that you are covering all the types of content you want. If you are at the point where you are doing sponsored posts this calendar will guarantee you post by your deadline, and mix up your sponsored/unsponsored content. 

Many people use their electronic devices to keep their schedule, but I have personally found that if you write it down on paper then you will commit. Besides my editorial calendar I use my Day Designer planner religiously to keep my life organized. The editorial calendar I created for you is a standard 8.5 by 11, and I recommend you print it out (if you want it smaller you can always resize it in photoshop). If you go to a kinkos, you can have them printout a ton of these sheets. From there you can pay less than $12 to have them spiral bind it for you. I recommend you have them add a clear plastic cover to protect your sheets. Boom! There you have it, your very own calendar for the year. 


Click here to download


Post Scheduling 


Think about your favorite blogs you visit daily. Do you visit them on Tuesdays because you know that’s a day they post? The chances are that you keep visiting this bloggers page because they are consistent, and you know their posting schedule. There is nothing more frustrating than a reader going to a blog, and the blogger’s posts are on random days at random times. One week the blogger's posts will go live at night MWF, but the next week they will post once in the morning. This inconsistency will limit you blog, and cause your audience to never visit again. Don’t let your precious following abandon ship. I personally post 5 days a week M-F, and my posts will be scheduled to go live at midnight. I have it go live early because I want to account for my readers in different time zones. 

All blogging platforms will have a scheduling option. I highly recommend you use this feature so you can stay consistent with the days and times you post.

Another great way to implement post scheduling is maybe have 1 or 2 daily topics. With my blog there are two days of the week that are designated for specific topic. On Wednesday’s I talk about health/fitness related content, and on Thursdays I create collages. Daily topics is a great way to show consistency with your readers. 


Outfit Shooting - Fashion Bloggers



Back when I was first started my blog, I tried to shoot what I was wearing everyday. This quickly ended because it was either too hot, Todd and I were on different schedules, abad lightening, and I would have to edit images every night for tomorrows post. For those of you who are fashion bloggers, when you shoot try to photograph 4-6 looks in a single session. When you get done shooting, edit the whole batch, and stick them in file folders like previously discussed. 

For those of you who work with a professional photographer, try to prepare your looks the evening prior to the shoot. Try everything on, and take a picture of each outfit so you can reference back to it during the shoot. Hang all garments on hangers to prevent the clothes wrinkling before the shoot. If you are planning to have different jewelry for each look I do recommend putting the pieces in a bag, and attached the bag to the outfit hanger. The more you can keep yourself organized during a shoot the better you will feel in front of the camera. 

I hope you enjoyed these tips on how to stay organized, and implement them into your blogging regimen. Make sure you subscribe to my newsletter here to see when part 3 of the series will go live. As always, if there is something that you want me to address specifically in the series, leave a comment below.

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Friday, August 19, 2016

The Complete Guide to Blogging - Part 1


I want to thank all of you for submitting your questions to me about blogging. I originally was going to make this a 3 part series, but there is just so much to talk about. Instead of having one post last forever I will be doing 6-8 parts of this series. The next guide post will go live next week. Make sure you subscribe to my newsletter to see when the next part of the series will go live. The series will start off talking about beginner aspects of blogging, and will advance as the series progresses. As always if there are more questions you want answered through the series leave a comment below. 


Let's get started....

If you are trying to start a blog let me be the first to say congratulations on starting your blogging journey. I have been blogging for a little over 2 years now, and I absolutely love it. I hope that the knowledge I provide can help all of you along your future blogging endeavors. 

Where Should I Put My Blog? - Platforms

Over the past couple years blogging has exploded, and so have the blogging platforms. You might feel overwhelmed with all the platform choices, and can't decide on who gets the honor of hosting your blog. Just like building a house from the ground up, you need to find that piece of land where you will be building your dream space. The two platforms that I have worked with are blogger and wordpress. 

Blogger

This is the platform that I currently use, and is often a good starting point for many aspiring bloggers. What I like about blogger is that it's pretty straight forward, completely free, and user friendly to those who don't have any technical background. Blogger also has google+, google analytics, and adsense as part of it's features. One of the great things about blogger is that you'll always get good exposure on the web since google owns blogger. Speaking of google. Since google owns blogger you don't have to really worry about a security breach or worry about surge traffic crashing out site. The downside with using blogger is that google owns your site, and has the right to shut it down at any time. 

Wordpress

This has become a popular hosting platform as the blogging scene continues to grow. This has become the platform of choice for those bloggers who turn blogging into their career.
Wordpress allows for a self hosted blog meaning you have complete control over your site. While wordpress is completely free, you will have to invest money into your site to purchase a domain name. What I personally love about wordpress is the SEO (search engine optimizaton - we will discuss in future posts) capabilities. There is tons of ways to register your keywords high on google with this platform. Wordpress also offers tons of flexibility in coding to design your site. The downside of wordpress is that is can be completely overwhelming to those who are not tech savvy. Also if you are not backing up the information on your website, you could lose the content during a crash.

Squarespace

This is such a great platform to create beautiful sites, and have a store attached to your site. Squarespace is a great platform to achieve a professional looking site. The downside is that you will be paying a monthly fee to run the site.

Looking Chic - Site Design

The thing people notice right away when they visit your site is the design. Just like spotting a guy on the streets if he's good looking you'll take a double look, and stare a little longer ;) The design of your site speaks volumes about what your site is about, and who you are as a blogger. Take my site for instance. Recently I went through a redesign a month ago. My site has evolved since I started blogging, and J Petite has a definite style and voice. I decided I wanted my site to be more colorful because that is who I am as a person. I'm free spirited, fun, and feminine. When designing your site you have two three option. 
  1. Free Template - Lots of platforms offer free templates that you can use that are great for a beginners. 
  2. Pre Made Template $$ - If you want something more jazzy and customizable you can usually purchase a pre made design through your host or a shop via the web. 
  3. Web Designer $$$ - The third option is to contact a web designer to customize you a template to install. This is the option I've done for both my designs. The downside with going to a designer is that it takes a couple months, and will cost you between $300-$600+.

What Makes You Different? - Finding Your Niche

I'm so stoked that you are still reading this, and I'm excited for your blogging adventure. What are you exactly going to blog about? With the sea of bloggers how are you going to stand out?

Before we talk about finding a niche in blogging, let us first define the term. A niche is what information you will be delivering to your readers whether it be broad such as "fashion" or narrow such as "affordable fashion."

 Finding your niche is going to be critical to determine even before your site goes live. What you are going to blog about is going to determine what you'll write, imagery, site design, and taking your blog to that next level. Use me as an example. I am a fashion fitness blogger. Since I am a Pure Barre instructor I have a strong fitness background. My fitness and health posts are my favorite to write because I have so much passion for everything that encompasses healthy living. I have found my way as a Pure Barre blogger, and have gotten tons of traffic from those specific posts. Since I am very specific in barre I attract a certain type of crowd. 

When you find something that you are passionate to blog about then writing will come more natural. Your passion will show through your writing, and create an emotional connection between you and your readers. 


Finding Your Voice - Creating Quality Content

This is the meat and potatoes of your blog. The content you write for each blog post defines your brand, and who you are as a blogger. Every time a reader comes to your blog they want to know how they will be helped, educated, and entertained through your content. 

Story time. Back when I was first starting to blog I was also working full-time at Nordstrom, and part time as a Pure Barre teacher. My whole day was booked like crazy, and I would blog way late at night. After going through and editing all my pictures I would be dead. Many posts were left contentless, and were just filled with pictures and a title. Do you think this defined me as a blogger? Do you think my readers knew who I was, and had an emotional engagement with my blog? Nope. When I decided to step up my game, and thoughtfully write each post I saw a tremendous amount of growth. My readers than began to engage with me through my comments, and sending me emails. 

Enough about me lets get back to you. That's why we are here right :) If you are having trouble deciding how to create a killer blog post here are some things to consider. 

Blog Title

Just as you would determine which movie to click on during a Netflix binge, the title is what lures you in. Something catchy and controversial will have your readers curious to learn more. One of my more controversial blog posts was titled "Did She Just Say the B Word?" were I talked about Botox. The title naturally lured people in, and had my followers curious to read. 

Imagery

The majority of us visit blogs to not only read about our favorite bloggers, but to view the images of their topic. The images provide clarity and support to what you are writing about, and are a key component of a good blog post. This blog post only has two images, but they set the tone for what were are going to discussion today. Another thing to consider is that when you do have images in your blog post then that post is  "pinnable" for Pinterest to increase your blog traffic. Clean imagery is the best for professional bloggers, and we will discuss in more detail on another part of this series. 

Writing

When writing the body of your post make sure you break it down into paragraphs. When skimming through a blog post the last thing you want to do is skim through a solid block of texts. No bueno. Make your content easy to read for your followers by paragraphs and header titles. Before you publish a post make sure there aren't any grammatical errors or misspelled words. I am the queen of this sometimes because my brain goes a million miles an hour, and don't always catch the errors in my post until later. 

I Hope you all enjoyed part 1 of this blogging guide, and can't wait to share with you the next one.
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Thursday, August 18, 2016

What Do You Want to Know about Blogging?


Lately I've been getting tons of emails with your questions about blogging. I love love love all your questions, and your sweet emails! Thank you. I decided to do a 3 part blogging series that will discuss how to start a blog, social media, brand relationships, affiliate links, collages, organization, and much more. I want to make sure I address all your questions so please leave a comment describing what you would like me to discuss. The first part of the series will go live tomorrow!!!

Now...
1....2....3.....Ideas GO!

Best Fall Boots Under $100

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Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Workout Wednesday: Brand Feature on Alo Yoga


Photography: Jamee Edwards
Top: Alo (got a size small since it's cropped) / Bra: Alo / Legging: Alo
If you are at all like me and live in your athleisure 24/7, then you probably have heard of Alo Yoga. It took me a little bit to get on the Alo band wagon just because they have a tendency to run big on me, and thus I always have to order an xxs that is only available online. Day after day I kept seeing all my Pure Barre clients LTB in their darling Alo styles, and I finally caved into my envious desires. 

What I love the most about the Alo esthetic is that it's different from the typical "Lululemon" look that has saturated the market. Alo Yoga has a edgier style, which allows their active wear to transition from the gym to the streets. Umm hello..... that's my life!

This brand plays with patterns, fabrics, and textures in their collections without sacrificing utility and quality. The lines within their leggings are slimming, and supply that "move-with-you" fit during a  workout. 

For those of you who haven't tried Alo Yoga the fit is different from Lululemon. I am very narrow in the hips, and don't have much curvature. Since I am small I have to wear an xxs (Comparison: Lululemon 2 / Beyond Yoga xs / Splits 59 xs / Kira Grace xxs ) in leggings. As far as tops are concerned they are pretty true to size, and I wear an xs. 

Make sure you check out the new evermint collections because the color is GORG-eous!
 

design + development by fabulous k