LIFE BEFORE BLOGGING

how blogging is different than other jobs
I get so many questions about how I started my blog, tips, etc. on the daily, that I thought I would elaborate a bit on life before blogging. If you look through my Blogging Tips category, you will find a good amount of posts on getting started, the logistics, and specific areas of running a blog. However, I think it is important to know where I came from; aka, what I was up to before deciding to blog for a living.

Some of you may have already read / heard the full story, but I’ll keep it short & sweet. I graduated from FIDM with a Bachelor’s in Business Management, and an Associates degree in Visual Communications. While in school, I worked at a private country club as the Buyer for the apparel in the pro shop. It wasn’t ideal (I wanted to be in “fashion”), but it was a steady job, and I learned a lot. Rewind for one sec, in high school I always worked in retail (M Frederick boutiques, to be exact), so I was familiar with the landscape of the retail / wholesale space.

At the time (college), I was set on being a Buyer. I loved the process of visiting the showrooms, picking out the clothes (with someone else’s money LOL), and then getting to merchandise (display) the clothing. It was creative (enough), and paying my bills. I later transitioned into Wholesale, which is on the opposite side of a Buyer’s job. I was now selling designer clothing to stores (department stores, online retailers, boutiques, etc.). It was a serious hustle. In Wholesale you’re always traveling, and not the glamorous kind. You drive a lot, lug heavy rolling racks down the cracked sidewalks, show the collection, break down, and do it all over again. I got burned out pretty quick.

After working for various designers and showrooms–the pay is shit, the commute into Downtown Los Angeles is a joke, and people were MEAN–I knew it wouldn’t be my life forever. It was during this time that I started my blog. It was obviously a side project, just something I did for fun on the side. As it happens, I was laid off from my last Wholesale job when a designer went under and that is when I had to make a decision. Either go back into that misery, or figure something else out. I went with the latter.

I began creative consulting since I had the knowledge and experience, and obviously I needed to make money. Working freelance (from home) opened up my schedule to blog a bit more, but it was still totally just a hobby. It was hard to maintain, as I was following all these inspirational bloggers (Damsel In Dior, Song of Style, Fashion Toast) who were always wearing beautiful designer clothing. I couldn’t afford it and so finding a way to make my Forever 21 clothing look enticing on the blog had to be my thing. I also relied on my boyfriend (now husband) to take all my pictures, which at the time was extremely frustrating. My expectations for him were unrealistically high (he was a law student, not a photographer), and so we would fight while taking pictures. Not good for our relationship.

Eventually, when my blog started gaining momentum–brands were reaching out, I was getting paid, my following was growing steadily–I could afford to at least hire a photographer to relieve Paul of the duty. It was /is a slow but steady process to get where I am today. I’m pretty sure I will say this for as long as I’m blogging: I still have a loooooong way to go. However, I can now look back at the early days of my blogging career and truly say that I hustled my ass off to get to this point.

Blogging Tips life before blogging traditional jobs vs. blogging blogger life
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12 Responses to LIFE BEFORE BLOGGING

  1. Courtney says:

    This is a great post Sivan. I always enjoy hearing how successful bloggers got started as seeing them as they are now it can be hard to imagine they too started from the bottom. Thanks for keeping it real and giving newer bloggers the drive to keep going as your success is proof that with hard work you can make it happen! xoxo

  2. nat says:

    It’s so refreshing hearing this, I think a lot of people think that it’s easy being a blogger but it’s actually very hard work! So happy for all your success your truly inspiring I love reading all your post and am always on your Lives (my favorite) also I was wondering if you can go more in depth about how you started to monetize your blog and how you actually were able to start charging for your services?

  3. super inspiring, Sivan! Finding the time is a battle every single day and also you know, the whole spending money on clothes while trying to save money for a wedding thing. It gets tough to keep up with and also sometimes fight w/my fiance which isn’t fair to him. However, I love that you worked with what you had and no matter what you still made the effort. Kudos to you and now look at you! Hard work does pay off!

  4. periwinkle says:

    What dress are you wearing in the post? Love it!

  5. Sharon says:

    Thank you Sivan for this post. I always love your honest voice and transparency. My husband is currently taking my blog photos for me, it’s a baby blog and while some of the photos he takes are amazing, he does not have an editorial eye. But I don’t get mad or do I have expectations for him. For now I’m just trying to work with what I got and take advise from you and other bloggers. Your really an inspiration as your blog is beautiful and so are you and you have great style. Thanks for sharing and have a great Monday!
    http://www.forthewonderer.com

  6. Jaclyn says:

    I love that you shared this. I really needed it.

    Thanks Sivan!

    Xjac

  7. Karen says:

    Very inspiring read! I have a similar story to yours, also studying fashion merchandising and having my mind set on being a buyer. I’m much happier blogging though! Glad it worked out for you!

    http://www.littleblackshell.com

  8. Milly says:

    Love this!. I am a student myself and just started my own blog. You inspire me and prove that anything is possible if you just keep at it xx

  9. June Johnson says:

    Thank you for being so honest I. This post. I sometimes feel like everyone else has it so together and I don’t know what I’m doing. This helped shine a light on the fact that everyone is hustling behind the scenes and that it can be a sloooow process!

  10. Aishly says:

    It’s very refreshing to read such a genuine article.
    Glad to see I’m not the only one that shares some of these challenges when it comes to blogging.
    Awesome post! :)

  11. Anissa Bell says:

    You are such an inspiration. LOVE following your blog and instagram posts/stories daily!

  12. Hi Sivan!
    I’m on the verge of quitting my job and I have been reading your story over and over again to gain pointers on how it’s done. When you did creative consulting, what did that consist of?

    Thank you!

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