Hi guys! As promised, I have rounded up all my answers to your various questions throughout the month… You hear enough from me, so it´s time to hear from you and get all of your questions and queries out there! Read on for blogging tips, my personal story, go-to juicer, favourite bag, what camera I use, property buying tips, and lots more…
“Goodness what I great idea Anneli! I’ve been a reader of your blog long before I started mine. I come by at least 4 times a week, and you never fail to inspire. I personally am very interested in blogging tips, especially about the best way to connect with brands. Another question would be why don’t you start youtube? I love your insta stories and I suppose youtube wouldn’t be much different.” – Tatjana
Firstly, thank you so much for your kind words, Tatjana. Your loyalty and support means the world to me!
In terms of blogging tips, for me, the key to a successful blog for the long-term is consistency and staying true to your own style. What do I mean by this? With consistency, make sure you are posting on a regular and frequent basis, to start building up a loyal readership. Then make sure you are consistent with which days you post, so your readers know when to come back for more. Example: I post 3 times a week, Monday, Wednesday and Friday (today´s posting on a Sunday is an exception and a bonus blog post!), and I can really notice an increase on those days, as hopefully my readers have got used to the days too. Staying true to your own style also goes hand in hand with being consistent; write about and share things you genuinely love, and which won´t suddenly confuse your readers! Don´t copy other peoples style to get more attention; have a true an honest voice and opinion will always shine through (and being fake and copying others will also make you stand out – not in a good way!). No one does you, better than you.
In regards to You Tube – it has been on my mind for such a long time, and I am still on the fence about it. I don´t want to just start it for the sake of it, and just be yet another You Tuber who talks about fashion and beauty (no offence by the way). I just feel the competition is so tough, and I would really want to do it if it was something extra I felt the need to share, create something a bit different – like interiors, DIY, healthy lifestyle etc. Any ideas are welcome, by the way! But as I am sure you can probably sense, I am still figuring it out basically.
“I love the accessories that you wear daily (besides your gorgeous wedding bands)… Your signet ring, thin gold & red bracelet. Would love to know where they´re from/meaning behind them/etc.” – Sarah
Thank you so much! The signet ring is from Rebus Signet Rings. I have the gold signet ring, engraved with a Swallow (symbolising hope), matched with the 18ct diamond Keeper Ring, which perfectly traces the contour of a signet ring. Aside from my wedding bands, it´s one the most precious pieces of jewellery I own. The thin gold bracelet is from Astley Clarke, in diamonds and 14ct cold. The thin red thread bracelet with 18ct gold is from Moksha via Aevi Wellness, and is a Wish Bracelet, inspired by Kalava and designed to signify unity and offer blessings between two people.
“What is the one beauty buy that you think really works and lives up to its promises?” – Christine
Oh, this is a really tough one, considering I am a beauty holic/horder! But let´s put it this way, if I was stranded on a desert island, and there was only one beauty item I could not live without, it would have to be Coconut Oil. The multi-use benefits is unparalleled to any other beauty product – and not only is it amazing for your skin and hair; it´s great for cooking, helps your digestive system, a great source of healthy fats, mental boost, immune support… You name it! So make sure you invest in a good quality one – preferably cold pressed, organic, raw and extra virgin. I also make sure I have one for cooking, and one for my skincare cabinet. At the moment, I am using Evanesce Créme and Dr. Jackson Coconut Melt for my skin/hair/body – and Optima Raw Virgin Coconut Oil for all things food related.
“What a great idea, please share how to approach/ connect with brands!” – Chichi
Glad you like it! I have been quite fortunate in one sense, having started the blog quite early on (before the blogging scene had completely taken off), so there wasn’t so much competition as there is now. This helped get me more noticed among the brands, so the majority of brands I worked with, actually got in touch with me. From this, I developed some really great relationships and connections, many of which I still have today.
But for someone who is starting now, firstly, I would recommend to only approach brands which you really love, which resonates with you and which would be relevant for your blog/social channels. If you´re quite new to scene and have a relatively small following, it´s more important than ever to stand out. So make sure your e-mail is really personal and impressionable – explaining why you love the brand so much, maybe share some previous links to where you have featured it on your blog or social channels. Then I would suggest a meeting, you offering to come to their office/showroom or just grabbing a quick coffee. I wouldn’t recommend going straight in asking for products or something you want; these brands get e-mails all the time from aspiring bloggers – so you need to firstly stand out, prove in the sense that you are a genuine fan, and then show that you are willing to get to know then, focusing on real relationship building. Hope that helps a bit!
“Can I ask about your lovely flooring? Trying to find something just like that, suitable for kitchen and living room…” – Louisa
The herringbone parquet flooring was sourced from Living Interiors, based down in Poole, Dorset.
“Hi! I’m a new reader on here, so I don’t know if this is something you’ve been writing about before. But I’m very interested in your London story. How and why you moved and how you’re adjusting as a Scandinavian in England. I myself have lived abroad twice, Italy and Australia, and am very curious in how England is to live in. It would also be fun to hear about your everyday life, like a “day in the life” post would be so much fun :)” – Frida
Lovely to hear from you! I have shared quite a lot throughout the years, but I never get tired of talking about my big move to London and how I adjusted to the big city, as it wasn’t so easy! I was living in Barcelona and studying a three year Fashion Marketing & Communication degree (this was after living in Australia for a year, having moved from my home country of Norway, at 19 years of age). After my second year, during the summer break, I had managed to secure an internship at Stella McCartney in London for a few months. Albeit, pretty tough, it was great work (and life experience) and gave me a little taste of the hustle and bustle of London. During these months, I also met my future husband, Sam, which definitely was the main reason for moving back to London, after completing my third and final year of my studies in Barcelona. Moving to London was tough for the internship – I knew no one, and at times, I was so lonely! Moving back again for the second time, but into Sam´s flat, was somewhat easier initially – as I at least had him as a main support.
When that said, I hated the first 1-2 years of living in London. It had a lot to do with my first job (working at a fashion PR agency), which was a really tough and un-friendly environment. But I also found it so hard to find proper friends in the city; everyone seemed to have their own group of friends already, and the work environment I initially was in, wasn’t the best. However, I obviously got to know all of Sam´s friends, and many of his mates girlfriends, which was lovely. And slowly, I moved jobs, I got to know more people. But it took me a good few years to really settle. London is a big and somewhat hard and overwhelming city; but it also has so many amazing elements, areas (many of which I am still discovering) and good sides. As with any new city, it takes time to really find your own comfort zone, areas you love, go-to places… I guess I really felt at home when bought my flat 2 years into living in the city, which Sam then moved into – and I finally felt had a little piece of London.
I´ll take note of the “day in the life” blog post request! Would be fun to share!
“What juicer do you use? I am looking for a juicer which is easy to clean… “ – Harriet
For the past year, I have been using Sage by Heston Blumenthal the Nutri Juicer Plus, and so far, so good! I find it really powerful, it juices 100% pure (no lumps or bits) and is easy to clean (and dishwasher safe).
“Please share your beauty secrets for pigmented skin?” – Katherine
First things first, wear SPF every single day, and start young! I started too late, and I wear SPF 50 every single day throughout the year, to continue to prevent any further damage. Throughout the summer I also wear sun hats when I am in direct exposure to the sun, and make sure I continuously re-apply SPF throughout the summer. During the winter, when my skin is not in exposure to the strong UV rays, and my skin is pale – I take the opportunity to have various peels and brightening facials, to help re-surface and reduce the pigmentation. I´ve still not had a full-on Chemical Peel, as the downtime is up to 4 weeks, but I really want to do it this year. Throughout the year, I also use lots of brightening products, such as the La Mer Brilliance Brightening Essence Intense and the Eve Lom Brightening Cream.
“Where/how did you meet your husband?” What is your favourite place you’ve visited? What place you haven’t visited, but still want to go? What is your favourite bag?” – Priscilla
I met my husband in London (while I was interning at Stella McCartney) between my second and third year studying in Barcelona. We met in a bar (totally cliche) 9 years ago, the rest is history… :)
Favourite place I´ve visited… That´s such a hard question, so I think I have to mention a few! Fiji, as it was our honeymoon, and the nature and people were amazing. Maldives, as it´s just insanely beautiful (even more in real life) and Sydney (I would move there, if it wasn’t so far away!).
Places we are desperate to visit, is Japan (Tokyo and Kyoto in particular), Cambodia, Vietnam, Brazil and Argentina.
Favourite bag at the moment is my Saint Laurent Monogram Sunset medium leather cross-body bag. So versatile and a true classic.
“Hi there love the blog! Eye cream recommendations please! There are way too many to choose from!” – Marie
Thank you so much! And I totally agree, there are way to many. And being totally honest with you, I have never really been that fuzzed with eye creams (although, being the beauty junkie that I am, I use it day and night). But I guess I don´t have any real concerns with lots of lines, puffy eyes and dark circles, so for me, it´s just a preventative thing. My personal favourite is Elemis´s Pro-Collagen Eye Renewal Anti-wrinkle eye cream.
“It would be great to hear how you put together a photoshoot – where do you get the clothes from and how, who takes the photos, how long it takes to edit etc? I also love healthy eating and would be interested to hear what you would eat in a typical day and what you favourite recipes are! thanks! love the blog!” – Sarah
It all depends on the photoshoot, the brand, what type and how many outfits, etc., – but generally it is pretty straight forward, and something I enjoy very much! I have worked with different photographers throughout the years (the first 3 years of blogging, my husband took all my photos!). I currently shoot with Lydia Collins. She will send me all the photos, I select and do all the editing myself (this takes me around 45 minutes to do in total). In terms of the clothes and where I get it from; this totally varies – all depending on the shoot – if it´s my own one (of which it would be from my own wardrobe), or if it´s a collaborative project with a brand, in which case I have either been gifted the outfit I have selected (I always make sure I can 100% style and select what I want to wear, to keep true to my own style), or it´s on a loan basis.
I love healthy eating too, so this one is easy! Of course my day to day varies from season. my mood and if it´s on a weekday or weekend – but generally, on a day-to-day basis, I will start my morning with a warm water, lemon and a dash of apple cider vinegar, or raw honey. Most days for breakfast I will have a smoothie, which generally consist of oat/almond milk, a greens powder (spirulina, wheatgrass, chlorella), frozen blueberries, frozen banana, chia seeds, coconut oil and a few almonds. Come lunch time I will either have homemade soup (favourites include broccoli and spinach, butternut squash or tomato), with a few slices of my Superfood Bread. Afternoon snack, I will have an apple, sliced orange or some watermelon, or a few rice cakes with almond butter or avocado. Dinner varies, but generally it´s grilled fish with a side of veg and sweet potato or quinoa, prawn stir fry with soba noodles, brown rice pasta (gluten free) with some protein and tomato sauce.
“Hi Anneli, love your blog. One of my favourite posts ever was about your Sunday routine… And I would love to read similar posts (in particular if you have any tips regarding organising your life and time management (e.g. do you use an specific apps or calendar). Thanks in advance!” – Luisa
Thank you so much! I will definitely take note of this, and make sure I do a more detailed one in the near future!
“Great idea! Your blog is so inspiring. It looks like you’ve done really well and been very savvy with buying/selling/doing up properties. My partner and I are currently saving hard for a deposit to buy our first place which is so tough (especially in London). Do you have any tips to get on the ladder?” – Anna
Thank you, that is so kind of you to say. In terms of our property experience, it is something we are both very proud of. It was by no means easy, or handed to us on a plate. There was a lot of hard work involved. A lot of research, persistence and support from our family was needed in the beginning years. But once we got on the ladder and flipped a couple of properties, it became somewhat of a hobby and a passion project for us; doing up a property, living in it for 1 year+, flipping it and seeing the return from it! So satisfying.
When that said, we were lucky in the beginning having the initial financial support, to get us going. We also bought several years ago, when it was easier to get a mortgage, and always invested in up and coming areas, before the prices soared (this is how we made our money). We continued to do this with every property (hence why research and persistence is key) – being constantly on the ball, getting in with the estate agents (basically hounding them), seeing properties before they hit the market, spotting bargains and opportunities which (hopefully) no one else had. There was a combination of being lucky, gambling on the right properties and hoping they would make a profit; but also a lot of hard work to get the right property, doing it up to sell (high spec on a budget) with some key selling features, to draw the buyers in.
“Hey Anneli! Can I ask you which camera you use?” – Katie
Hey Katie! I use the Olympus PEN E-PL7 with a normal and 45mm lens for on-the-go or when I´m travelling. When I am at home, shooting any interior, beauty, lifestyle posts, I use my Canon 600D. I have also started using my iPhone 7 Plus a lot more, as the camera is so good, and it´s so easy to capture more when I am out and about.
“Hey Anneli. I saw on your Insta Stories about the Super Elixir stuff. Have you used used this before and would you recommend it?” – Louise
I have used the Super Elixir greens powder before, and especially love their Super Elixir Alkalising Greens travel sachets – which I found really useful and the results were great. I am now using the Nourishing Protein (which is a first) and I LOVE it. It´s so delicious, and is the perfect afternoon snack replacement, when you´re in need of an extra boost of energy and natural sugar. It´s also great as a pre or post workout shake/smoothie (my favourite combo is almond/oat milk with frozen banana, a scoop of the Nourishing Protein and some coconut flakes).
Thank you for taking the time out to read this! I really hope you found it useful. Please comment below in this post for more questions, DM on social media, or drop me an e-mail directly. And remember, you can ask me anything! The next round of answers will go live in August.