Monday, 11 March 2019

Three years and counting

Isn't it crazy how time flies? It's quite scary, really. One minute I was typing the very first words of my very first blog post and whoosh ... suddenly it's three years later! Yes, dear readers, I've just celebrated my third blogiversary. It was on the 5th of March and no, I didn't forget. I actually started writing this post on the 5th, but by the time you are reading this, it will be three years and counting!

I've never regretted the decision to finally take the plunge for one minute. While I'm the first to admit that blogging takes time (a lot of time) and dedication, it has been nothing but a joy for me.

And while I'm blogging for myself in the first place - my blog is, after all, my on-line diary and photo album combined - it is you, dear readers, who make the experience worthwhile.

Back in March 2018, I wore this dress which used to be in a Flemish film

To celebrate this third year of blogging madness, I trawled through the archives as I thought I'd show you some of my favourites from year three. I was rather spoilt for choice so it wasn't an easy task. In the end, I went with my gut feeling and picked one or two (or three, in one case!) from each month.

Almost coinciding with my blogiversary, I was nominated for a Sunshine Blogger Award by the lovely Veronica of Vronni's Style Meanderings. Thank you, Veronica, the timing couldn't have been more perfect!

I'll be weaving together my answers to Veronica's questions and my favourite photos in this post, so let's waste no further time and get started!

Pattern mixing on an early Summer's day in April 2018

1) Why did you start blogging?

I'd been following various blogs behind the scenes for a couple of years, which inspired me to start my own. I have always regretted not keeping my teenage diaries and have considered starting some kind of diary many a time, as I felt I could do with some structure to my day-to-day life. Apart from holidays and any special occasions, the years just seemed to roll past, leaving me with only the vaguest recollection of what I'd been up to during a particular year.

Walking among daffodils in Bruges, May 2018

Blogging seemed the perfect solution, as it would give me an incentive to keep it up.

Being a keen photographer, I also wanted an outlet for my creativity, as most of my photographs were just languishing in digital files. And, finally, it would give me the opportunity to share my passions, in particular my vintage and second hand finds.

A lawn full of daisies, May 2018

I came up with my blog's name in August 2015, though it still took me until March 2016 to actually take the plunge.

It's only fair to thank my lovely friend Inez for nagging me until I finally gave in!

Frilly blouse and floral trousers, Shropshire, June 2018

2) Has your blog changed since you started it?

Definitely! I thought I would just share some photos of me posing in one of my vintage frocks once or twice a week and show you my latest finds, adding only a few words.

Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that words would flow so easily, that I'd be blogging about so many different subjects, or that I would be writing series of travelogues. It's not just all about vintage fashion anymore!

And never in a million years did I think that my blog would attract so many readers and followers.

Meeting Vix and Lynn, Chester, June 2018

3) Blogging is time consuming - what are the challenges you find in finding the time?

I am passionate about my blog so, even if I do admit blogging is time consuming, I don't consider this a challenge.

In spite of having a full-time job, I will always find time for things I'm passionate about.

I'd move heaven and earth to get a blog post finished and published, as the rewards far outweigh the time I'm putting in.

Vix and yours truly, Attingham Park, June 2018

4) When do you write a post - in the morning or the evening?

Even though being a full-time working girl means the brunt of my writing is being done in the evenings, I do keep adding to my posts constantly. I often jot things down during my commute, which I will then quickly add to my draft once I get to the office. I find that once I have an opening line, the words just keep flowing.

Instructions for a heatwave, July 2018

Finally, I add photographs and edit my flow of words. 

As one of my trademarks are collages, these often take longer to assemble than it takes to actually write the post. Especially since I'm such a perfectionist!

Garden party, August 2018

5) What is your favourite topic?

I think outfit posts are and and will remain the main staple of my blog, but travelogues have become a close second. I can't wait for our next trip just after Easter!

Jumpsuit at the seaside, September 2018

But I'll write about anything, really: childhood memories, the seasons, walking, nature, my home ... 

I love putting a bit of poetry and things that please the eye in my posts, as I think there is enough ugliness in this world as it is. My blog is my happy place!

In dreamful Autumn, October 2018

6) What's the thing you love most about blogging?

I love the fact that I can share my passions with you, my readers, and I treasure each and every comment I'm getting from you. Blogging is such a great way to meet kindred spirits. I was lucky enough to meet two of you in real life last year. Meeting Vix and Lynn definitely was one of the highlights so far and thinking about those days back in June still makes my heart sing.

Soaking up some sunshine in Zeeland, November 2018

What I didn't expect to happen is that I love writing part of it so much. I did try to put pen to paper before and once even started writing down some autobiographical notes, some of which have already made it into my blog, but I never thought I would do anything with them.  I certainly hadn't the faintest idea whether I could actually write or that people would appreciate my ramblings.

More pattern mixing, December 2018

7) What's the thing you like least?

There isn't anything really. Apart from the odd, annoying, spam comment, I haven't got anything negative to report about my blogging experiences.

Walking on Christmas Day 2018

8) Where do you see yourself and your blog  in five years time?

I'm not in the habit of  thinking too far into the future. I'm living in the moment and I'm only thinking ahead in bite-size little chunks.  But I'd like to think I'll still be blogging then. Hopefully with a bit more time to spend to spend once I'm no longer working full time.

Double trouble, January 2019

I've thought long and hard about whether to nominate anyone at all. In the end, I decided not to nominate anyone in particular. 

Brightening up a January day

If anyone wants to take up the challenge, here are my questions:

1. What inspired you to start blogging?
2. How does your blog influence your daily routine?
3. How long does it take you to write an average blog post?
4. When and where do you take your photos, and who is your photographer?
5. What is it that you enjoy the most about blogging?

Answers on a postcard, please, or you could just mention them in your comments. If you're a blogger, you could even write a blog post featuring my questions. It's all up to you!

Muppet coat and snakeskin booties, February 2019


  1. Happy Bloggy Birthday to you!!
    What a wonderful post - both the outfits (I adore that velvet coat) and the enthusiasm you have from blogging! I'm looking at those photos of us and I'm already excited about seeing you both this year!
    Like you, the years would fly by and although I always keep a travel journal, the other months of the year often became a blur. It's wonderful having an on-line reference point and I love to be able to see what I wore at fairs, festivals or on holiday so I can mix up the outfits.
    Here's to your next three years. It's been a joy to meet you both online and in real life! xxx

    1. Thank you Vix! The only regret I have is that I didn't start blogging earlier! xxx

  2. It's I treating to see how you compose your blog and you obviously put a lot of thought into it.
    Your photos are always lovely and I enjoy following you on your journey. xxx

  3. happy blog birthday! 3! wahoooo!! cheers to you!
    love to read your answers and looooove to see all that photos of chic & cool & vintage ensembles.
    i soooo glad i met you at blogland - what are the chances with mill. blogs being around? if i remember right it was a comment you left at vix´s blog......a smart comment, so i had to look who´s that girl :-D
    biggest hugs! xxxxxx

    1. Likewise, I'm so glad I met you too. And I'm sure it was Vix who brought us together! xxx

  4. What an interesting read, Ann! And the photos are fantastic; some I'd not seen before. Loving the jumpsuit,the velvet coat and you in trousers!

    Your enthusiasm for your blog shines through and it always makes it a joy to read.

    Hope you have a lovely week.

    1. Thank you so much Veronica, and thank you again for the Sunshine Blogger Award. It couldn't have come at a better time! xxx

  5. I really enjoy reading your blog and seeing your photographs. Happy blog birthday!

  6. What a wonderful compendium of outfits my dear. This is the perfect tribute to your third year blog anniversary. Congratulations.
    So many beautiful looks here. I love the movie star dress with the turquoise accents. The mixed prints are always beautiful , and that orange hat with the printed dress just screams happy to me!
    No wonder you got the sunshine award .
    My blog is also about expressing myself and it is a creative outlet like yours. However I certainly couldn’t do it with a full-time job. Hats off to you my creative friend !!

    1. Thank you Elle, I couldn't do it without my husband's support, though. xxx

  7. Ann I love you blog and your style amd I am looking forward to many wonderful posts ❤️
    Happy blogyversary!
    You are sooo right. If you have a passion you find time for it. Me too :)
    A very huge hug Tina

    1. I knew you'd feel the same, Tina! Thank you! xxx

  8. Happy Blogiversary Ann! I absolutely love your style, photos and writing and enjoy every single post you publish! Keep up the great work my friend! I look forward to many more years of your blog and your friendship :) XXX

    1. Thank you so much Sasha, I'm so glad we found each other! xxx

  9. Blogland is a super place, I’ve met some wonderful people including you and Jos and love the friendships that we have all formed.
    So happy blog birthday and long may you reign. Roll on this year’s meet up xxx

    1. "Long may you reign", I loved that :-) It's been a joy meeting you and Philip in real life too! xxx

  10. Happy Blogiversary! I love your blog - the eloquent writing and the lovely pictures. I love the outfits, the shopping and the travel and nature posts. I am so glad that I found you! Although I have blogged on and off for a number of years, you are my inspiration for my new 'SewLindyLou' blog. I originally set it up to go with my Etsy shop selling vintage sewing patterns, but have now started to write more 'diary' type posts. So thank you Anne XXX

    1. Oh, Linda! What an absolutely sweet comment, and I admit to shedding a little tear when I read it. I'm so glad to have inspired you! xxx

  11. Happy Blogversary!

    Ah...that amazing blue and magenta coat makes another appearance. What a statement coat!

    I agree that the older I get the more my life becomes one massive blur. Keeping an online diary of sorts is a great way of knowing how you filled your days.

    After reading about all of your travels it has inspired me to think about taking similar trips in the future.

    One of the reasons I enjoy reading your blog is because of your poetic writing skills. Your talent with words is such a treasure and I'm thankful you take the time to share it with us.


    1. Thank you Suzanne, what a lovely comment. I do enjoy reading your blog too. You're an inspiration! xxx

  12. Happy blogoversary! I love seeing your photos and all your outfits. That blue and magenta coat will always be an absolute winner.

    As someone who's very glad she never kept a teenage diary, I'm quite horrified to think of my blog that way. But you're right, it's nice to have something to look back on and see how the years passed.

    1. Thank you Mim! I probably would have cringed over my teenage diaries ...

  13. Happy blogoversary! Your blog is always a source of enjoyment (and vintage clothing envy). I always learn something new from you, be it historical information, or cultural observations. You've taken me on walks, holidays, tours and shopping that I'd never have the real life opportunity to do.

    1. Thank you Goody! Yours is one of the blogs I followed from before I started mine, and I've learned some things from yours as well! xxx

  14. Happy 3rd blogoversay, Ann! I loved your retrospective and your answers to the Sunshine Blogger Award (a Major Award!). I feel much the same as you about blogging - it's SO rewarding! Here I am, nearly 11 years into it, and no sign of stopping for me, either.

    Thank you for the time - I know very well how long it takes to write those bigass posts! I love your writing - it reflects your "voice" very well. You're on my list of "bloggers I want to meet one day"!

    1. Thank you Sheila! I'm fully intending to celebrate my 11th year of blogging some day! And obviously I would love to meet you too! Well, I've got the travel book for Victoria, haven't I? xxx

  15. What a WONDERFUL post! I love when bloggers find fulfillment in their hard work at blogging. It means they're blogging for the right reasons. This post is so nice to read!

  16. I really enjoyed reading this! You have a real zest for blogging which comes across in the post! And congratulations on 3 years!

  17. Happy Blog Anniversary, my dear!!! Your blog, without a doubt, is one of my very top favorites - I am so happy that you write it! Love your outfits, your thoughtful posts, your travelogues, your sense of fashion and love for vintage and old times, your bright red hair and sweet, kind, intelligent and perceptive personality. Here is to many more years of happy blogging!!!

    I also started my blog being inspired by other women bloggers, but interestingly enough I first select and organize photos for my post, that gives me a "skeleton" to work with I suppose, then I start typing words. I don't have mental space for blogging now, but I miss the sense of connection with my dear blogging friends such as yourself. Hopefully it'll improve soon. Love you!

    1. Thank you so much, Natalia! I do sometimes work around the photos as well. But inspiration often strikes me before they're finished, and so I start writing ... I do hope you'll find mental space for blogging soon, as I miss having you around! xxx

  18. woww, I'm damn late, but anyway I wish you a happy blogversary!. Such a lovely recap, lots of breathtaking outfits to enjoy (colors, prints, inspiration!!). And it's even more fabulous to read your answers and know a little bit more about you and your blog. I love particularly your collages, they've become your signature, and I truly appreciate the time and effort you put in them. A real job of art. And I like to read whatever you write, on walks, memories, vintage finds or impressions of life, because this is where your personality shines! (sorry if I sound too sentimental ;DDD)

    1. You're so sweet, Monica, thank you so much for your kind words. I'm quite a sentimental girl myself, so no worries, and certainly no need to apologize! xxx