Monday, January 28, 2013

Get Inspired!

Happy Monday! I hope you had a swell weekend. I figured the best way to kick off blog week would be to discuss inspiration. We're all influenced by various sources. For me, bright colors, beautiful design, typography, and artwork, instantly get my creative juices flowing. Blogging is worthless unless you post about what interests you most. Readers will sense the lack of originality and passion in your writing and graphics. It shouldn't feel forced. The point of blogging is NOT to appeal to everyone. In fact, what I love most about the blogosphere is that there's a niche for everyone. Just be yourself. Before you know it, you'll be surrounded by a community of like-minded friends who look forward to your daily posts and encourage you. If I'd known a few years ago that there were this many people who love Gin and Bravo as much as this gal, I would have started blogging a long time ago. If you blog or you're considering one, hone in on your interests and consider your passion. Here's where I find inspiration...
  • Books: A beautiful book is enough to make my heart skip a beat. Whenever I feel like I'm in a creative rut, I turn to my bookshelves first. I've been fortunate enough to receive some pretty fabulous ones from my family as gifts. Because I adore a handful of artists, I typically like to surround myself with coffee table books featuring these artists and their work. I recently treated myself to Kate Spade's Things We Love book. It is amazing! I have a feeling I will continue to refer to this gem for awhile. Some of my favorite books include Grace: A Memoir, Blog Inc., Diana Vreeland after Diana Vreeland, Little Book of Lettering, Eames: Beautiful Details, and The Pursuit of Happiness. Books are a great investment—they serve as a perfect source of inspiration and double as decor. Does it get much better?
  • Blogs: I've followed blogs since college, and it's been fun to watch some of my favorite bloggers become so successful. I would be remiss if I didn't point out that I've been influenced by them over the years. They seem like they're having a blast and many of them are so genuine. I love that they maintain such a personal rapport with their readers. Blogs I find aesthetically amazing include Fabulous K, Note to Self, Oh Joy, and Designlovefest. I'll share more of my faves later this week. Stay tuned.
  • Everyday: If you scroll to the bottom of One Fine Day and look for the attribution, you'll see the following tag line: Finding beauty and humor in each day. That is essentially the point of this blog. I started posting with the intent to share the things that bring me the most joy on a daily basis. Flyboy is gone frequently, and there were moments at the beginning of our adventure in Hawaii that left me in pursuit of my purpose and personal happiness. Blogging helped me focus on all the good things in my life and gave me a platform to share it with family and friends. Some of my most popular posts deal with quirky anecdotes that delight in the mundane and Instagram images that feature life's little details. I never imagined these posts would be such a hit, but I believe readers like a glimpse into the blogger's life. I think it keeps things personable and authentic.
  • Journaling: It's safe to say that the day I learned to write was the day I started carrying some sort of notepad or notebook with me. I think that's just one of the reasons I'm such a stationery fiend. Journals are a trusty companion. They've accompanied me to the Musee d'Orsay in Paris on multiple occasions, and they've brought me comfort at Hawaii's most breathtaking beaches. I think it's crucial to keep one handy if you're a creative type. There's something incredibly therapeutic about jotting down an idea, scribbling a quick list, or doodling your thoughts. I keep a journal at my desk that's devoted to blogging. There's a perpetual list of post ideas that comes in handy when I stare at a blank computer screen. About 75 percent of the ideas are worthless, but it's just part of the process. 
  • Pinterest: I know that some people have commented that Pinterest is killing blogs. I disagree. For me, it acts as a wonderful tool to organize ideas and images that I could potentially incorporate into future posts. It's also been a fabulous resource to learn about new blogs, artists, DIYs, recipes, etc. If you blog for YOU and be yourself, Pinterest can only act as a positive resource to drive traffic and distribute original content. I think Holly Becker of Decor8 said it best, "The point is that none of us can repetitively toss up photos and leave it at that on our blogs. A little chit chat is needed... If you want to add value through your blog content then put your heart into it. Be a bit more bold and lay your opinions openly out there, express yourself more freely than ever, be honest and funny, be yourself… Blog YOUR way. That will set you apart from the pack." 
  • Magazines: Similar to books, magazines serve as one of my favorite sources of inspiration—I have stacks of them! Sometimes it's nice to escape to some cozy corner of the house and revisit past issues. When I get a little one-on-one time with my collection of Domino and Blueprint, it's like visiting an old friend. They're just as lovely as I remembered! These glossies always leave me grinning from ear to ear.

So, what inspires you? How do you come up with blog posts?
P.S. I tweaked the comments section a bit over the weekend by including the Disqus widget. I think it will offer a more user-friendly way to moderate and respond to comments. Past comments should be uploaded over the next few days. Hopefully, there aren't any glitches!

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