On conscious blogging…

Please check out SKYLISH.CO.UK for the new look. You are currently reading this blog via Bloglovin’ or on my old interface as the new website is integrated to Bloglovin’ (I know I’ve said this for a while – but I will get it sorted!)

blogging, sustainability, fast fashion, fbloggers, lbloggers, bbloggers

 
This is a post I’ve actually wanted to write for a while, but never quite known how to go about it. But, with Black Friday only just behind us, and the topic of discussion on many people’s minds as the week passed by, it seemed like the perfect time to discuss what it means to be a more conscious blogger… especially when a lot of your content has traditionally centered around fashion.
 

blogging, sustainability, fast fashion, fbloggers, lbloggers, bbloggers
blogging, sustainability, fast fashion, fbloggers, lbloggers, bbloggers

 
First – a little bit about my blogging history. When I first started blogging, it was solely for the purposes of beauty. When I got into my early teens I gained an obsession with makeup, I’d spend hours at a time sat on YouTube learning all the tricks I could from what used to be called “beauty gurus”, and I was compelled to start writing about it because none of my friends really understood my obsession (or why, for example, I asked for a makeup brush for my birthday). Whilst I’m not really obsessed with beauty at all anymore, I still know what I’m doing with a beauty blender and crease brush due to what I learned back in the day. Soon enough, a love of fashion also entered my life. I remember before I went on any holidays I would spend hours planning outfits for each day, and trying to match them as closely as I could to outfits being worn by Kim Kardashian, Cheryl Cole or Vanessa Hudgens (as you can tell, this was back in the day). I would save up £5/week from the £20 my parents gave me, and when I had a good amount, me and a friend would go to Primark and Boots and completely splurge it on all the latest beauty and fashion finds/dupes.

 

blogging, sustainability, fast fashion, fbloggers, lbloggers, bbloggers

 

When university started, anything I was doing “online” sort of took a back seat. I closed down my lifestyle blog, updated my beauty and fashion blog only very sporadically and I also closed down my webdesign shop. Towards the very end of university, I decided to restart Skylish properly and focus it a bit more on the writing. I wanted my own platform again. I wanted to write useful articles for women and girls like me, articles that got people thinking, or just made people laugh, and that’s still what I try to do today. I’m a writer at heart. Blogging is certainly different to what it used to be – whilst there are still a few of us, there aren’t many people that even really blog these days (and if you know any good blogs – please share!) Most of the focus is on Instagram rather than well crafted written pieces, and I guess that’s just the way it is.

 

blogging, sustainability, fast fashion, fbloggers, lbloggers, bbloggers

 

As I’ve grown and matured, I’ve tried to grow Skylish with me. When I first started receiving a full time, monthly income, I would allocate £200 a month – yes, £200 – to shopping on either PLT or Missguided. Eventually, I realised this was such a waste of money and totally over the top, so I stopped doing it. I don’t actually shop that much these days. I shop when I feel like I need something (for e.g. a ring I’ve been wearing for years has been totally bent out of shape through lifting, so I nabbed myself a branch new shiny ring from Pandora today… lured in by their 20% off sale!), in terms of where I shop regularly, that’s probably Zara when I pop into when it looks particularly inviting, have a browse around and pick some stuff up. I’m also blessed in that I sometimes have brands send me clothes to promote. Oh – and gym clothes… I love buying gym clothes. Another change since the past few years – I’ve tried to publish less “lazy” content on Skylish. Sometimes it’d be nothing more than pictures of my outfit with links to where I got everything from. If I wouldn’t want to read something like that, why would I expect someone else to?

 

blogging, sustainability, fast fashion, fbloggers, lbloggers, bbloggers

 

Finally, when it comes to growing Skylish with me, sometime late last year, I was introduced a bit more to the world of sustainability. Honestly – this is something I knew nothing about. So long as I was recycling and turning off my lights… I thought there wasn’t much else to it. And whilst this is a whole topic on its own, what was more relevant to what I was doing was the topic of fast fashion, and, more generally, the overall encouragement of over consumption of what is often something of low quality. It made me think about what I can do – as a blogger that indeed uses a lot of fashion imagery – to promote somewhat healthier habits:

  • First of all, my blog isn’t my biggest source of income really at all. I work full time in Investment Banking and that gives me the luxury of leeway to make changes on my blog and Instagram and not have it majorly impact my life. What I’m trying to say is, it’s not always so easy when you’ve always gone about doing things a certain way and that’s been the formula to your success, to having to rethink and rewrite said formula
  • Second of all, with one of the changes I’ve made being to focus on buying higher quality, longer lasting, and essentially more expensive, this is feasible because I’m on a quite nice full time income. If I was still in year 10/11/12, that would simply not be feasible
  • With the disclaimers out of the way – one change I’ve made is to not be afraid to be an outfit repeater. Yes, being a fashion blogger, every new set of photos was always a new outfit period. Be that bought with my own money or gifted. I used to always feel pressure, coming up to a shoot, to have an all new set of clothes and outfits to show. Now when I do my shoots, it doesn’t bother me to rewear and restyle something in an outfit. Honestly, it’s a more realistic way to live. It’s how I live. Plus, my shoots and the photos are here to supplement what I write, I’m not necessarily walking down a runway
  • Being pickier with the brands I work with – there are some brands I could probably use stock my entire wardrobe for free every single month – but I don’t want to go out and encourage people to buy something of low quality just because it costs £7. It’s just not long lasting
  • Not encouraging over consumption. I won’t sit here and tell people to buy, buy, buy, when that’s not exactly my mentality. Whilst I do shop, of course, a lot of my money also goes into savings, and of course I try to do smart things with these savings. I’m not saying don’t treat yourself (I mean, I’m loving the new ring I bought today from Pandora), but also don’t over consume to the point where something things you buy you never even touch (I’ve done this before)
  • Lastly, I’m trying to discover more sustainable brands. I’ve already picked myself up some gym gear from TALA, but websites like AYM I’ve also bookmarked for future usage

 
And there you go, a not so brief overview of where I’ve been and where I’m at currently. I’ve not perfect by any means, but I also just want to be real over here. As my thoughts and habits adapt, Skylish will always adapt with me. Thank you to everyone that continues to support! I’m a bit meh with my posting frequency these days, but at the crux of it I love to write and will always be back to brain fart over here for everyone that reads!
 

blogging, sustainability, fast fashion, fbloggers, lbloggers, bbloggers

 

Dec 1 2019 at 8:46 pm   ·   Leave a Comment   ·   Posted Under Think Pieces






Travel 

24 Hours in Paris

Please check out SKYLISH.CO.UK for the new look. You are currently reading this blog via Bloglovin’ or on my old interface as the new website is integrated to Bloglovin’ (I know I’ve said this for a while – but I will get it sorted!)

holiday, vacation, travel, paris, france, travel blogger

 
2019 has definitely been a “well travelled” year, I’ve been in and out of the country more times than I can count – a lot of this has been travel due to work (Sweden, Copenhagen, Helsinki + Munich this year), but then I’ve also of course travelled for myself – this year this has been Barcelona, New York (well, that was half work half personal), Toulouse, Split and Hvar, Turin and most recently (and perhaps my last “non-work” trip of the year? TBC) I went to Paris with my boyfriend Levi. I don’t always do travel posts (it really depends on how eventful the travel was), but I thought I would do one for Paris as a short stay in Paris is so efficient and a good idea for a weekend break if you live in the UK (literally just across the pond to get there).
 

holiday, vacation, travel, paris, france, travel blogger
holiday, vacation, travel, paris, france, travel blogger

 
I’ve actually been to Paris twice before, but when I was a child and on family holidays. On both occasions the trips were pretty much for me and my brothers to just have the best time in Disneyland every. single. day. I otherwise haven’t had Paris as a top pick for weekend breaks until this very special occasion. It was mine and Levi’s 5 year anniversary – what location other than Paris is more perfect for an anniversary?!

Travel – London

We hopped on a 06:00 flight out to Paris on Saturday 19th October, and I think that might officially be the earliest flight I’ve ever taken in my life. Early flights always seem like a great idea at the time when the serious price discount captures your heart – but when the day comes it’s nothing short of painful. The good thing is, we landed around 08:00 Paris time/CET which literally gave us the entire day and weekend to enjoy the city.
 

holiday, vacation, travel, paris, france, travel blogger
holiday, vacation, travel, paris, france, travel blogger

 

Accommodation

We stayed at a hotel called Hotel du Collectionneur near Champs-Élysées. When I travel with work I usually say at some older school (as in long standing), but seriously classic and gorgeous hotels, so that’s what I wanted to recreate with this stay. HDC marketed itself as a really luxurious, “award winning” 5-star hotel, so I was really excited to stay there (I love a good hotel, if you haven’t realised…), but it fell super short of expectations to say the least. It was functional, and definitely nice, but it wasn’t old-school in a classic and grand way, it was just sort of… old. The food was totally overpriced and super sub-par. And we found a damn humongous spider crawling up our wall when we were about to go to sleep which made me paranoid for the rest of the night. That said – the staff was nice, and the location was very central. You win some you lose some but I expected more given how they advertised themselves.
 

holiday, vacation, travel, paris, france, travel blogger
holiday, vacation, travel, paris, france, travel blogger

 

Travel – Paris

Travelling around Paris was super simple – once we got the hang of it. Making our way from the airport was somewhat of a disaster and a lot of up and down, but we got to where we needed to be after just over an hour or so. Once in the city, we would just buy a day ticket for I believe less than 2 Euros, and use that to jump on and off the underground based on where Google Maps instructed us to go. I always say the London Underground is one of the most efficiently functioning travel systems I’ve ever experienced (well, most of the time) – having travelled quite a bit around Europe – but it’s totally overpriced. I think one journey on it’s own is £2 let alone a day ticket. Similarly to London, undergrounds were almost everywhere you turned, so we’d just jump on a tube and take it from there. We tried to use one of those hop on/hop off Lime scooters when out and about but as is our luck… they didn’t even work for us.
 

holiday, vacation, travel, paris, france, travel blogger
holiday, vacation, travel, paris, france, travel blogger

 

Things to do

After having a short nap at the hotel upon arrival (given the 06:00 wake up and all), we set out in the afternoon to start to explore the city. Usually when we go on holiday we just roll up, set off on foot and explore the city on our first day, starting from the centre, however given Paris has so many sights, we had a mental tick list of things we wanted to see. Below are the places we visited:

  • Arc de Triomphe & Champs-Élysées
    – The funny thing is, I remember visiting Champs-Élysées as a child, but I thought it was a statue. Clearly, I had no idea what was going on. Nice views and a nice stroll, respectively, none the less
  • Musée d’Orsay – As we were walking down to The Louvre from Champs-Élysées, we passed a museum which seemed inviting and had free entry – so how could we say no. It turned out to be Musée d’Orsay which is an art museum housing finely crafted and interesting sculptures, as well as very elaborate and eye catching paintings which almost all have some interesting history behind them. I’m usually not one for art museums – I tend to prefer history or science museums where I feel like I learn something and otherwise find art museums to be super boring, but this one was on the better ones I’ve been to and I think it’s because behind every sculpture and painting, there was a story. Sometimes these stories were in French and I didn’t understand them, but – occasionally they’d come with an English translation attached and it certainly made the whole experience that little bit more interesting.
  • The Louvre – This was definitely a gorgeous landmark to visit, we came just as the sun was setting which was quite a lovely view. We were actually interviewed whilst here by a few ladies running a BBC Sounds podcast called No Country for Young Women, it was about diversity in Paris and our views. What I can say is that visiting Paris the other week, vs. visiting when I was a child, it is most definitely a more diverse city than I otherwise first saw some years back. But of course, I don’t know the ins and outs about how things really are over there (ps: we were cut out of the final podcast – I reckon it’s because we didn’t say anything controversial enough lmao. We move anyways!)
  • Eiffel Tower – I don’t know how you actually get in to the Eiffel Tower – I assume there are some tickets online that you have to book months in advance – but every time I’ve gone to Paris the queues have been insane. That said, admiring from the outside and taking cute photos works just fine for me, and has on the three different occasions I have visited. 🙂 Jokes aside, the tower is as gorgeous as the internet hypes it up to be, but more so when it starts to shine/glitter on the hour once it goes dark. I imagine it takes some time for a view like that to get old
  • Love Lock Bridge – Turns out the locks from the Love Lock Bridge were removed a few years ago as there were millions of them weighing down the bridge and essentially making it unsafe. So although the trip to the bridge was uneventful… we stopped off at a cute coffee shop afterwards which made the travel down there a little more worthwhile

 

holiday, vacation, travel, paris, france, travel blogger
holiday, vacation, travel, paris, france, travel blogger

 

Where to eat

We settled down to eat dinner near the Eiffel Tower so as you can imagine, most of the nice restaurants we came across were fully booked up for the evening. That said, we Googled and found a place called 20 Eiffel which was right by the Eiffel tower that had a table available for 2 that evening. We got a set menu which I think was around EUR 30-35 and it was amazing. The service was fantastic, super quick, and the staff was friendly… but more so the food was just so delicious I am salivating just thinking about it. I went for mussels for my starter and we both settled on guinea fowl for our mains. If you’re ever in Paris and need a recommendation, 20 Eiffel is definitely mine!

Overall – it was lovely to be back in Paris again for a short but sweet trip to celebrate 5 years together. If you’re thinking of doing a quick break across the pond – I’d definitely recommend taking a trip to this romantic city!
 

holiday, vacation, travel, paris, france, travel blogger
holiday, vacation, travel, paris, france, travel blogger

 

Nov 17 2019 at 5:40 pm   ·   Leave a Comment   ·   Posted Under Travel