Category Archives: Blogging

Leavin for Georgia….

Hey all! Did I mention I am attending Haven this summer?? Haven is a conference in Atlanta. Some of my favorite bloggers are putting it all together. I am very excited to chat DIY for a few days ! There are 250 bloggers attending…I haven’t met anyone in person (except Traci , she’s another Kentucky girl…and she is on the team of bloggers putting on this whole production) .

Hands=On at Haven Conference 2012

 

 

I am thrilled to be going. It really is one of my favorite things…to go and meet new people who all have shared interest. We will painting, projecting, learning…from the veterans in the blogging community. I will be snapping pics along the way….and I am sure I will be tweeting and instagraming too :)

There will be lots to share when I return…many creative juices will be flowing. I feel blessed to be apart of this community of creative women.

Tracie Stoll is a wife, mom and has a passion for creating new things. On her blog Cleverlyinspired.com she is constantly sharing ways to inspire her readers to be clever in their own home. Since 2010 Tracie has been sharing DIY projects, crafting, remodeling and decorating along with some easy tasty recipes…all on a mindful budget. She is a graduate of the University of Dayton where she studied visual art and communications. Tracie has been featured on popular sites such as Country Living, CNN living, Good Housekeeping, Better Homes and Gardens, Huffington Post, Apartment Therapy, Seventeen and Design Sponge. She is also a member of the True Value Blog Squad & Martha’s Circle of trusted bloggers.

Ten things you need to know before you start a blog

I recently was invited to share some blogging tips over on the national Pi Beta Phi blog. I was humbled when they asked me….here is what I shared….Thanks again!

 

I am thrilled to be a guest here on the Pi Beta Phi national blog! My name is Tracie and I am the author of Cleverly Inspired (www.cleverlyinspired.com) I graduated from the University of Dayton in 1995. I am a proud member of the Ohio Iota chapter (University of Dayton…GO FLYERS ;) Louisville, KY is my home now…along with my husband Bill and our twins. _MG_0478 (2)

 

I started blogging about 2 years ago as a way to share projects and recipes with my friends. I also thought it would be a great way to “catalog” family recipes for my kids…to pass them on someday. Blogging has turned out to be so much more than I could have ever imagined. I feel like it fits me so perfectly. It joins my love of photography, writing and projecting…and brings them all together in a space where I can share and inspire others. I have learned so much…all by trial and error. I didn’t take a class on blogging back at UD…blogging wasn’t even around! But I do use so many of the things that I learned in college on my blog.

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Here are some tips if you are thinking about jumping into the world of blogging….

  1. Find something that you are really passionate about. It should be something that would interest others too. Everyone has something to share. What would that be for you?
  2. Really think though your blog name. Once you pick it…that is it! There is no going back. When I thought of Cleverly Inspired it really encompasses everything about my blog. Inspiring others to be clever in their own home.
  3. Buy your blog name (your domain). It will cost you about $40 per year…but it secures your blogs name on  the web. Make is easy for people to find you….so that they keep coming back. I went through Go Daddy for purchase and hosting.
  4. Post good material. Period. I post about 3 to 4 times a week. Before I write a post I think “is this really blog worthy?” Is it worth someone taking those 2 minutes out of their day to read? Don’t just post something just to post something. Good material will keep people coming back to see what you are writing about.
  5. Be picture perfect. I can’t stress this one enough. Good, well lit, interesting, thought out photographs are the key to any good blog. If you don’t like taking and editing pictures…you may want to try and hone those skills a bit. They will draw the reader in every time and keep them coming back. On my blog, I am definitely “picture heavy” –I don’t write a post until I have plopped my pictures in first. My writing is completely dictated by the photos. You don’t need a fancy camera…just take the time to learn a bit about tricks to great photos.
  6. Don’t blog to get rich. I didn’t realize there was any money to be made by blogging. I blogged for about a year before I was approached by an ad affiliate program. They were interested in placing some ads on my blog. I researched it and found out that it would fit in nice with what I talk about on my blog and I went for it. Now I make anywhere from $300 to $900 per month. I work with companies such as The Clever Girls Collective and Social Spark to provide sponsored post that fit into my readership. I think of it like this….a blog is a bit like a magazine…and with every few pages of content you will have an ad. Same goes for the blogging world. Everyone works hard…and deserves a paycheck….be patient though. It takes time.
  7. Be you. Simple as that. Don’t try to copy or intimidate. You do YOU the best…
  8. Get out there and meet up with your blogging communities. Network with other blogs that have similar material and readership. Use your rush party skills…online! The best way to reach out is to offer to do guest post on other blogs..and join up to link parties that allow you to showcase what you do. Little by little your blog name gets out there.
  9. Use social media. It is free and it is the easiest way to pass around great blogs and ideas. Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter are all favorites of mine!
  10. Create a schedule for yourself. When you start a new adventure…sometimes it becomes all consuming. Take time for photo edits and writing…but also take time for other things in your life. Don’t let it be the only thing you do…or you will burn out.

Here are a few past post…

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Tracie

Tracie Stoll is a wife, mom and has a passion for creating new things. On her blog Cleverlyinspired.com she is constantly sharing ways to inspire her readers to be clever in their own home. Since 2010 Tracie has been sharing DIY projects, crafting, remodeling and decorating along with some easy tasty recipes…all on a mindful budget. She is a graduate of the University of Dayton where she studied visual art and communications. Tracie has been featured on popular sites such as Country Living, CNN living, Good Housekeeping, Better Homes and Gardens, Huffington Post, Apartment Therapy, Seventeen and Design Sponge. She is also a member of the True Value Blog Squad & Martha’s Circle of trusted bloggers.

One Sentence Interview: Kate Riley of Centsational Girl

 

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Kate Riley of CentsationalGirl.com is one of two bloggers that drew me into this whole blogging world. Her style very closely matches mine own. I can relate to every post she writes. I would describe her style as updated classic. Chic…without the shabby. Traditional…without the heaviness. Simple…but not boring. Truly love her and her blog. She has also become a bit of a mentor to me…which is invaluable in this world of blogging. Kate is humble, kindhearted and the type of gal you would love to share a bottle of vino with and just shoot the breeze ;)

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She was sweet enough to give us all a bit more insight about herself. Here are her answers….in almost one sentence;)

1. If you could bring back one trend from the past…what would you bring back?

Men and women dressing more tailored and more formally when out it public like they did in the forties and fifties.

2. If you were a dog…what kind would you be?

I’d most certainly be a scrappy little terrier, like a West Highland or Jack Russell, always running around getting into mischief.

3. Something you never leave out when designing a room….

Amazing light fixtures – overhead and on an end table or console, they’re the perfect punctuation.

4. If money were no object….I would buy _______ today….

If money were no object, I’d build a conservatory over our courtyard with a high pitched glass ceiling and rustic wood beams furnished with deep seat elegant fabrics and filled with plush pillows and textured accents influenced by nature and lush plantings and complete with a dramatic conversation piece light fixture.   Sorry for the run on sentence, I’m just obsessed with the idea because I’d never need a vacation if I had that.
5. If I wake up in the middle of the night…the first thing I think about is usually ___________…..

Have the kids kicked off their covers again?   Or how many more hours of sleep do I get (glancing at clock).

6. When I go in a friends house…I usually end up in the ______________… 

Kitchen making cocktails and whipping up some culinary treats.

7. My favorite way to eat ice cream is __________________…  

In my pajamas watching TV, two scoops of mint chocolate chip please.

8. One design regret I have is ___________________

My slightly cluttered yellow and blue French country phase of 2004.  Thankfully I was awakened from that period – I’m still a Francophile, but I hope a little more sophisticated these days and focused on grays, creams, and subtle metallic sheens.

9. What is your favorite thing about blogging?   

Meeting people who share my interests – love love love that side of the blogging adventure.

10. Coffee?Tea?Milk? What is your comfort drink?

Coffee with cream every morning, gotta have it, but I’ve cut back to one a day.

 

I know that I have talked about all sorts of projects that Kate has done in the past. I would encourage you to go see some for yourself…. at Centsational Girl. Thanks again Kate!!!!

Tracie Stoll is a wife, mom and has a passion for creating new things. On her blog Cleverlyinspired.com she is constantly sharing ways to inspire her readers to be clever in their own home. Since 2010 Tracie has been sharing DIY projects, crafting, remodeling and decorating along with some easy tasty recipes…all on a mindful budget. She is a graduate of the University of Dayton where she studied visual art and communications. Tracie has been featured on popular sites such as Country Living, CNN living, Good Housekeeping, Better Homes and Gardens, Huffington Post, Apartment Therapy, Seventeen and Design Sponge. She is also a member of the True Value Blog Squad & Martha’s Circle of trusted bloggers.

One sentence interview with Kate Pruitt : NEW Series!

Just send it out into the universe…and see what happens. Those were my thoughts as I mulled on this new little series “One sentence Interviews”. You never know…maybe no one will respond…but then again…maybe someone WILL respond. I picked out some favorite bloggers of mine and I sent them a short email explaining my new series. The challenge…answer some fun, unique and random questions with just one sentence answers. We are all busy…so a short little Q and A is a fun way to learn a bit more about the people we have all come to admire in the blogging world without too much time lost :)

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First up is Kate Pruitt, she is the Senior Editor at Design*Sponge, a website dedicated to home and product design founded in 2004 by Grace Bonney. She has contributed over 80 design projects to the site, including over 10 new projects for the Design*Sponge book which came out last year. (source)

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Above Picture of Kate (what a little cutie )…working on an original no doubt…Below are some of her creations also…

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Using just one sentence to respond…here is how Kate answered….

1. If you could bring back one trend from the past…what would you bring back?

Sunken floor beds and sofas from the 70s.

2.If I were a dog…what kind would I be?

Cardigan welsh corgi – a big dog in a little dog body!

3.Something you never leave out when designing a room….

Textiles – all else being equal, textiles can completely change the style/mood of the room, and they are easy to switch up and make yourself!

4.If money were no object….I would buy _______ today….

A steam shower, but if money were REALLY no object, a big plot of land on the California coast to build an artists’ retreat.

5.If I wake up in the middle of the night…the first thing I think about is usually___________…..

Honestly? Rats. One time my cat brought a live rat into the house and let it loose in the bedroom at 4am, and now I hear the cat door at night and immediately expect a rat invasion…

6.When I go in a friends house…I usually end up in the ______________

On the floor, playing with his or her pets.

7.My favorite way to eat ice cream is __________________…

In between two freshly baked cookies.

8.One design regret I have is ___________________

My living room rug. It’s wool knit and very plush, but it sheds way too much and always looks dirty. Flat weave rug next time!

9.What is your favorite thing about blogging?

Taking an individual’s work that maybe 5-10 people have seen, and allowing thousands of people to see it, appreciate it, and actively support it. Nothing beats that feeling.

10.Coffee?Tea?Milk? What is your comfort drink?

Tea all the way. Earl grey with milk puts me right at ease :)

 

I cannot thank you enough Kate! I now want some ice cream and chocolate chip cookies!! You are so gracious and so talented!!

I would encourage you to visit Kate Pruitt over at Design Sponge….she is always up to something fabulous!

Tracie Stoll is a wife, mom and has a passion for creating new things. On her blog Cleverlyinspired.com she is constantly sharing ways to inspire her readers to be clever in their own home. Since 2010 Tracie has been sharing DIY projects, crafting, remodeling and decorating along with some easy tasty recipes…all on a mindful budget. She is a graduate of the University of Dayton where she studied visual art and communications. Tracie has been featured on popular sites such as Country Living, CNN living, Good Housekeeping, Better Homes and Gardens, Huffington Post, Apartment Therapy, Seventeen and Design Sponge. She is also a member of the True Value Blog Squad & Martha’s Circle of trusted bloggers.

Speaking at Project Mom Conference

 

 

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Just a short recap of my time in Dallas this past weekend…

About 6 months back I was contacted by a sweet girl named Cassie. She is the founder of Project MOM…which is a conference based in the Dallas, Texas area that focuses on helping Mom’s be “even better” moms. The mission of the conference is quite simple…recharge YOU so that you can be a better mom. The sessions focus on all sorts of topics that Moms want to learn more about…speaking to your teen, managing money, meal planning, effective strategies for parenting smart…and my session which was being creative in your home.

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We flew in on Friday morning….love the clouds ;) I took several pictures of them! Ha!

There was a meet and greet session at a local bookstore on Friday evening. The “Crockin girls” just came out with a fabulous cookbook and they were there to sign books and chat. It was great meeting everyone…so friendly and energized!!

 

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Vera Bradley was a sponsor of the event…and all the speakers for the weekend were given some Vera luggage. Sweet!!! It was like I was given gold! I was thrilled with this bag ;) Just have to try to keep it out of my peanut’s hands!!

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On Saturday, the event started at about 9:00. Cassie tells me there were about 450 registered Mom’s. Wow!!  was so impressed with all the planning. Cassie and her entire team were fabulous! So professional and the whole day was seamless. My DIY session was after lunch from 2:00 to 3:00. I focused my session on giving yourself time to be creative. Realizing that creativity comes in many forms…like writing, creating music, building things, art…etc. Try to channel that little person your were in grade school..and remember what “playtime” is. Then I showed some of my past projects and answered questions. Lots of great questions!! Such a sweet group!

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If you are a Mom and live close to Fort Worth, Dallas or Oklahoma City…I would encourage you to take some time to attend next year.

Here is the website for Project Mom to learn more. Thanks for having me Cassie :)

Tracie Stoll is a wife, mom and has a passion for creating new things. On her blog Cleverlyinspired.com she is constantly sharing ways to inspire her readers to be clever in their own home. Since 2010 Tracie has been sharing DIY projects, crafting, remodeling and decorating along with some easy tasty recipes…all on a mindful budget. She is a graduate of the University of Dayton where she studied visual art and communications. Tracie has been featured on popular sites such as Country Living, CNN living, Good Housekeeping, Better Homes and Gardens, Huffington Post, Apartment Therapy, Seventeen and Design Sponge. She is also a member of the True Value Blog Squad & Martha’s Circle of trusted bloggers.
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