The Formula for Style Blog Success

Filed under my uber-confrontational personality

Something got me started on craft and style blogs late last year. Despite being a total androgyne and not having any access to/room for crafting supplies, I like looking at the pretty things other women are making, the pretty things they’re wearing, the pretty things they’re decorating their spacious out-in-the-middle-of-nowhere houses with.

But man, those things can tire me out pretty quickly. There seems to be a formula for them, and this is it:

1) Blog names involving animals: Kittenbear, Saturated Canary, Dainty Squid

2) Cutesy words for everything: “love this cardi”, “swooning over these sunnies” (that’s cardigan and sunglasses, for those of you who don’t read stylespeak)

3) Faux-awkward clothes-modeling poses that have obviously taken the “America’s Next Top Model” advice to “try to look like a broken-down doll” way too much to heart

4) Opening up a shop to sell handmade or thrifted items, usually on Etsy but more preferably at Renegade Craft Fair but even more preferably in a 1949 Airstream camper painted pink with white trim:

photo by Little Chief Honeybee, whom I actually really like despite my fun-making

5) Being very young or trying to act like it: dressing up their Blythe dolls, owning everything rainbow-colored, loving hearts and sparkles and baby pandas

6) Describing themselves as “awkward”. Or “wonderfully awkward”. Or “adorably awkward”. (I AM ACTUALLY AWKWARD! You have 15,000 Facebook subscribers who are trying to mold themselves into you!)

7) Closing every post with an image that says “love, [whatever cutesy name the blogger has, because they’re all cutesy]” in a signature font:

8) Having long lists of “likes” in their sidebars that include puppies, cuddling, and a dessert of some sort

9) Inserting their URLs at the end of every comment, making it clear that they’re only commenting to plug themselves:

10) Strategically moving nearest to the thrift store in town that always manages to have designer clothes with their tags still on, mismatched but perfectly coordinated vintage plates that will be glued together to make a cupcake tower, and an array of mason jars dating from 1885 to present, all bedbug-free

Of course there are plenty of really original craft and style blogs, including some awesome personal blogs that I read daily. And I know that people complain about the fact that blogging women apparently have nothing to talk about but the clothes they wear and the homes they make, but even the most militantly feminist among us is still pinning cake pops and salad-in-a-jar recipes on Pinterest.

Even I have a little Kittenbear inside of me trying to get out.


  1. Serial says:

    This made me think of Julie Klausner’s “Valentine to Maturity” – which caused quite a hubub.

    “There’s so much ukulele playing now, it’s deafening. So much cotton candy, so many bunny rabbits and whoopie pies and craft fairs and kitten ephemera, and grown women wearing converse sneakers with mini skirts. So many fucking birds.”

    • Kim says:

      I hadn’t seen that Julie Klausner post, but it’s so perfect I think I teared up. Especially the part about all the fucking birds. And using capital letters.

      I hate women who hate other women, but seriously, other women? Stop being girls. I hate it.

      • Serial says:

        Julie Klausner is definitely not a woman-hating woman, in my view. Except Patti Stanger. She says Stanger is made of snakes – which seems like a reasonable guess in my book. Anyone who loves women (and gays) should probably hate Patti Stanger.

    • Cassie says:

      That was a fantastic post.

      Capital letters FTW.

  2. Alfagirl says:

    I think someone should make a Blythe doll for Blythe Danner. Btw, totes hearting this post! ;)

  3. Jessica R. says:

    Oh this post made me laugh because it is so true! And those convenient thrift stores always have their sizes too. That never seems to happen for me, ever.

    I also love Lisa’s blog, though it may be because she always posts travel photos… oh and because she’s awesome. :)

    P.s. I think you should start going by kittenbear.

  4. Lisa says:

    Please start signing your posts with that signature!

    I love personal style blogs, but I NEVER have any luck thrifting. I thought it was just Shreveport, but Kelly has found some amazing things at the very same Goodwill I’ve gone to. So I just stalk sales racks instead and use my blog as a way to help me define what I’m looking for.

    Thanks for the link love! Definitely checking out the rest, Feathers and Freckles seems just my style!

  5. bluzdude says:

    I think you should create a Kittenbear character that despite his cutsey name, actually wears cheap aviator frame sunglasses and daisy dukes, frequents the Services Offered section of Craig’s list and styles her hair with unicorn blood. I’m thinking she has the Snuggle Fabric Softener bear’s head on a pike outside her trailer.

  6. Andrea says:

    Dude, I laughed at all these points. Thing is, I can’t STAND the droves of women all trying to be original, starting their crafting blogs or fashion blogs, when they are just diving into a trendy sea of “oh-my-god-that-outfit-is-fucking-horrible-so-stop-it”. The really annoying thing is that they share links on their blogs to each others’ blogs to drive up their traffic. They have 400 followers, but only 1 or 2 comments per blog post. Denial. It’s a drug.

    It’s also like the trend of “I’m-a-SAHM-and-got-a-fancy-new-DSLR-camera-so-I’m-going-to-become-a-professional-photographer”. I see some really, REALLY shitty photography out there, by people who are all, “ooh, look, I can push a button in manual mode. I’m an arteest!”

  7. Loren says:

    Cannot tell.. is this advice? Or mockery?
    I should probably make one of those cute little signatures…

    Also, I made one of those cupcake stands :o

  8. Kim says:

    Oh god, I hate style blogs. I hope they all accidentally get deleted.

    (If you make one I will like it.)

  9. Andrea says:

    Oops – I forgot to sign with my blog site address!

  10. Gena says:

    “(I AM ACTUALLY AWKWARD! You have 15,000 Facebook subscribers who are trying to mold themselves into you!)”

    Yes, god yes. I blame Zooey Deschanel. Taking a picture of yourself in an old prom dress and Chucks, with your feet in a ballerina pose doesn’t make you “awkward.” BITCH I WILL SHOW YOU AWKWARD.

    I enjoy thrifting, and occasionally find some good stuff, but mostly it’s Old Navy clothes that I get for super cheap as opposed to merely cheap. I don’t know where some of these gals supposedly find vintage Chanel purses without having to sell a kidney for them.

  11. Christy says:

    It’s funny b/c it’s true.

  12. I want to cuddle your inner Kittenbear. And then feed it cupcakes and ladybugs and take it to Disney World in an Airstream trailer for spring break.

  13. Emma says:

    Thanks for clicking over from Loren’s blog :)

    You know, I am guilty of about half of these things…and I hate the other half just as much as you do. Does that make me a split-personality blogger? Haha

    Anyway, my awkward self is off to thrift some cute cardis!

    Hugs and kisses (and a buttload of sarcasm),

  14. Cassie says:

    This may be the best post you’ve ever written. I’m not even being sarcastic.

    What I never understood was ‘linking up.’ Is that just me?

    Love and cuddles,
    Cassie (is that a real site?)

  15. Cassie says:

    And please, for the love of all that’s good, change your comments to either “Lovely Comments” or “Lovelies” for short.

  16. Joanne says:

    HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!! Yes.

  17. I’m such a nice guy, I’ll even promote your site on your site
    Of course, I don’t know how to make stuff like that, so…
    Anyway. It’s the thought that counts.

  18. Haha! So true! It’s also funny that there are both thing I can’t stand and also things that I myself am guilty of in this list. I guess this goes for everyone, except it’s always different things in different capacities ;-) I just hope I don’t do many of the things I can’t stand!

  19. LOL! I laughed so hard reading this, all the while cringing inside as I knew that eventually I would get to a point that was me. The terror!

    The Kittenbear comment was the cherry on top of an already great post :)


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