DIY Gold Foil Vases

Who else is totally obsessed with gold right now? I can’t get enough–gold jewelry, gold office supplies, gold home decor…I know, you get the picture. I’m excited to have Cynthia from Style Never Stops taking over this space today to show you how she created this gorgeous gold foil vases for next to nothing! 

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While in the thrift store the other week I stumbled upon these gems for $2.50 each.

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They were short, wide glass tumblers that were dusty, plain, and didn’t look like anything too special. But I knew right away that I could use them to create modern gold striped tumblers that could be filled with flowers. And since I already had gold foil spray paint at home, I knew I could do this DIY project for next to nothing!

Here’s how I did it…
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Step 1: Make sure the glass is clean, using soap and water to clean it, and using Goo Be Gone to remove residue from the price sticker. Allow it to dry well.

Step 2: Use painters tape to make stripes around the glass. Painters tape comes in varying widths, so you can choose your desired width based on the look you are hoping to achieve. Make sure to press firmly on the painters tape after you have it on the glass to ensure that the edges are adhered well so that you will have crisp paint lines later on.

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Step 3: Rub sand paper (I used 220 grit) very lightly over the un-taped portions of the glass. This will help to lightly scratch the surface of the glass so the spray paint will adhere better. The key is to do this lightly. It will be subtle. You don’t want obvious scratches. (FYI – The lower the # on the sand paper, the rougher it will be. The higher the #, the finer it will be. So 80 grit will be a lot more rough & scratchy than 220 grit, for example.)

Step 4: Wipe off any dust left from step 3.

Step 5: Spray with a light coat of Gold Foil spray paint. The key is to do several light coats. (True confession: I don’t have much patience and often try to rush this process. However, when spray painting on glass, you must must must apply light coats of spray paint because the paint runs easily.)

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Step 6: Apply multiple light coats of spray paint and wait several minutes in between each coat to allow it to dry before moving on to the next coat. It took me 3 light coats to get good coverage on these pieces.

Step 7: Allow the paint to dry completely. Remove the tape.

Step 8: Fill with flowers, surround it with pretty items, and enjoy :)

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This whole project start to finish took me about 30 minutes. Any DIY project that can be completed entirely while my kids nap is a WIN in my book! It was simple, quick, and inexpensive. Yet it looks beautiful and makes a statement. I personally am thrilled with how it turned out! What do you think?

A little about the me: I’m Cynthia, a style seeker, DIY-er and young mom who is on a journey toward Stylishly Living with Less! I believe fashion and practicality can co-exist to create beautiful style in your wardrobe and home. My days involve peanut butter and jelly smears, juice splashes, and playing outside with my kids. So I strive to live real life without compromising great style. And I’m on a journey to simplify my wardrobe and live with less in my home while maintaining beauty and style. I passionately believe that each woman is beautiful, and that style is never defined by size, budget, age, or quantity of possessions. I am in pursuit of incorporating style into my life while minimizing my possessions in order to spend less money, have more time, feel more content with what I already own, give more generously, and be able to live life more fully by prioritizing the things that really add value to my life and the lives of those around me. I invite you to come along on this journey with me!

Growing Baby Number 2 | 34 Weeks

Well, we are 6 weeks away from my due date! When I think about it in terms of weeks, that’s really not a lot of time. But then when I think about being pregnant for 42 more days…I get a little sad about it. Because 42 days seems like an awful long time, and I’m pretty over being pregnant right now. :P

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Baby’s size: 17.75 inches–the size of an average cantaloupe.

Symptoms: Braxton Hicks. With a vengeance. I didn’t really have Braxton Hicks or any kind of contractions, or my body prepping for labor with Joshua until the day my water broke, but with this little lady I have been having Braxton Hicks something fierce. The contractions have been really painful, but it’s definitely not anything to get excited about–they stop if I change positions, drink some water, etc. so I know they aren’t real. I wouldn’t want them to be real at this point anyway–it’s just a few weeks too soon for Little Miss to try to come into the world. The absolute earliest I would want her to come is 37 weeks.

So even though I’m hoping she’ll stay nice and secure in there for at least 3 more weeks, I’m getting pretty tired of pregnancy. My legs are swollen and sore just a few hours after I get up and I feel like I just don’t have the energy I need to give Joshua the attention he deserves. He’s been such a trooper about it though.

Looking forward to: My baby “sprinkle”! It will just be a small gathering. I don’t need anything huge or extravagant since we have all of the necessary baby equipment–we just need some girl clothes. :)

Sleep: Is totally hit or miss these days. Some nights I sleep so soundly, and others I wake up to pee at 1:30 am and can’t fall back asleep. So I end up lying in bed watching 90210 until I finally feel tired enough to fall asleep again. Which doesn’t usually happen until about 4:00 or 5:00 am.

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Tasks: Having Braxton Hicks contractions has gotten me thinking about how we would deal if Little Miss really did decide to come early, so I’ve been trying to get my hospital bag in order. It’s kind of tricky for me to pack because at this point I still don’t know if we’ll be doing a VBAC or if I’ll have another c-section. I guess I should just assume we’ll have a successful VBAC–it would be better to have the things on hand I would want post vaginal delivery and not need them vs. not packing them and wishing I had.

Since we live in a little 2 bedroom apartment, I don’t have to get any sort of nursery prep done–which I’m the teensiest bit sad about. I would love to decorate a room for a little girl! But Little Miss will just sleep in our room or in the hall until she’s sleeping through the night–at which point we will put her in with Joshua.

I’ve also been in the process of writing up a schedule for Joshua and some info about where to find things in our home–that way when we do have to head to the hospital, whoever is with him will know what to do with him.

Cravings: Fruit and chocolate milk. Not usually together. I also woke up in the night on Monday really wanting popcorn shrimp and cocktail sauce.

Wearing: Dresses. I’m kind of over pants at this point–mostly because I’m sick of having to pull my pants down and pull them back up every time I have to pee–which is very frequently. Dresses are just way easier.

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Pesto Chicken Salad: An Easy Snack or Meal

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #PutItOnARitz #CollectiveBias

Ritz Snackify Challenge Instagram Contest

Click HERE to enter the Snackify Challenge with your own RITZ®-topped creation for a chance to win a $100 Gift Card!

One condiment I really like to keep in my fridge is pesto. It’s such a versatile ingredient, and having it on hand makes for some really quick and delicious meals and snacks. We love pesto spread on toast with a fried egg, on pasta (of course!), and in this quick and easy pesto chicken salad.

This easy pesto chicken salad can be made with homemade or storebought pesto and makes a great snack or light lunch and is perfect for entertaining guests! #PutItOnaRitz #ad

The pesto chicken salad is awesome for sandwiches with some toasted bread, or as a lettuce wrap filling for a low carb option. I love eating it on RITZ® crackers, though–not only because I’m addicted to those buttery little rounds, but also because using those familiar little crackers is an easy way to get my toddler to try new foods–using a RITZ® cracker is actually how I got him to try peanut butter for the first time. :) Because of that, we almost always have RITZ® on hand. Even though the green chicken salad might seem a little daunting, he knows there is at least something about this snack/easy lunch he’ll like–those crispy crackers he just can’t get enough of on their own.

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I love that I can use something as simple as a familiar RITZ® cracker to get Joshua to try new foods that he’ll learn to enjoy–and little does he know that pesto chicken salad is so great for him! Whipping up a batch of this pesto chicken salad is an easy way to have healthy snacks and quick meals just a cracker’s topping away.

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Pesto Chicken Salad

makes 3 cups

1 can chicken, well drained
3/4 cup prepared pesto (recipe follows–you could use storebought too, if you wanted)
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup chopped pecans
salt and pepper to taste

Using a fork, mix the pesto and chicken together until chicken is well shredded and pesto is evenly incorporated. Add the cranberries and pecans and fold in. Taste and adjust seasonings with salt and pepper.

Spoon on top of you favorite variety of RITZ® crackers–we love the RITZ® Whole Wheat and RITZ® Roasted Vegetable varieties best! We found all of the RITZ® options at our local Wal Mart–I had to put my foot down to stop Dustin from putting every RITZ® variety in the cart…

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Now for that pesto recipe! Traditionally, pesto is made with pine nuts–since those can be pretty darn expensive, I often substitute sunflower seeds, walnuts, pecans, or cashews.

Classic Pesto

makes 1 1/2 cups

1/2 cup pine nuts
1 clove garlic
1 large handful spinach
2 large handfuls fresh basil leaves (do not use the stems! It will make your pesto bitter)
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
juice from 1/2 a lemon
1/2-1 cup olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

In a skillet over medium heat, toast the pine nuts. Be sure to watch them closely and stir frequently so they don’t burn!

Add the toasted nuts and garlic to a blender or food processor. Pulse until finely chopped.

Add the spinach, basil, cheese, and lemon juice and pulse until combined. Then, with the machine running, add the olive oil in a thin stream until a smooth, slightly runny paste forms. Taste the pesto and add salt and pepper to taste.

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 What quick and easy snack/light lunches would you make with a RITZ®? 

5 Makeup Mistakes I Used to Make

Do you remember when you first started wearing makeup? I was 12. My mom gave me a few of her eye shadows that she didn’t ever really use (and now I know why she never used those colors) and a tube of mascara and I was SO excited. Needless to say, I made a ton of makeup mistakes in my teen years, a few less in college, but even still some in the past year. I probably still don’t do everything perfectly, but thanks to easy access to beauty gurus via Youtube, I don’t make these 5 makeup mistakes anymore.

5 common makeup mistakes so many people make that are (thankfully!) easy to fix.

Not filling in my eyebrows

I think this was the biggest game changer for me. I was always so wary of doing anything to my brows because I have seen brows filled in SO poorly my entire life. But if your brows are done right, it completely changes your face. It makes your face look so much more defined and brings greater attention to your eyes.

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I think we can agree there is a pretty discernible difference in the amount of definition in my face after I started filling in my brows.

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My favorite brow product is Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade in Taupe. Dipbrow is waterproof, so my brows stay where they are all day, even if I go swimming–which I love. :) I use my IT Cosmetics angled brush to fill in my brows. Filling in your browns definitely has a learning curve, but it is so worth it to learn! I love this tutorial–it was incredibly helpful for me.

Casey Holmes: How I fill in my eyebrows

Using the same foundation shade/formulation year round

Not until last year did it occur to me that I should probably be using a different foundations for summer vs. winter–I wish I had realized this sooner. My summer skin is probably 3 shades darker than my skin in the winter and early spring. My skin has different needs in each season as well–my winter skin tends to be more dry, so it makes more sense to use a hydrating, liquid foundation. In the summer however, I’m definitely more oily, so a powder foundation fits the bill a lot better.

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I love BareMinerals BareSkin foundation (I wear the shade 03 Bare Linen) as my winter/early spring foundation and BareMinerals Ready foundation in the shade Medium Tan (R310) is my perfect summer tone.

Not washing my makeup brushes regularly

I cringe to think there was a period of time where I didn’t wash my makeup brushes more frequently than once a month…if that. Ick. Not has washing my makeup brushes regularly made a serious difference in my skin, but my makeup applies so much better because my brushes aren’t full of gunk.

Not blending my makeup

Thank you beauty Youtubers, for helping me realize I needed to do this. I used to just apply blush and bronzer and call it a day, but now I know how important it is to take a big, fluffy blush and lightly blend over my face so I don’t have any obvious makeup lines.

Choosing the wrong foundation shade

Obviously, I wouldn’t choose the wrong foundation shade on purpose–who would? In my case, it was mostly just a lack of knowledge when it came to matching foundation to my skin. I’ve learned a few things that have made it possible for me to choose the right shade more easily:

1) Match foundation to your NECK

Your foundation shade needs blend seamlessly from your face to your neck, otherwise you will have an obvious line of foundation.

2) It’s worth it to pay more for a product you can try in the store

I can’t tell you how much money I’ve wasted on drugstore foundations that turned out to be the wrong shade, simply because I couldn’t try them before I bought them. I’ve found I’ve actually saved money buying higher end foundation that I can shade match in the store vs. just guessing from the the color in the bottle. Plus, if you buy your makeup at places like Ulta or Sephora, they have a much better return policy–even on opened makeup.

3) Have someone help you!

That’s another benefit of buying your makeup in a higher end store–there is always an associate who can help you get shade matched. I’ve been the most successful when I have a second opinion in choosing my foundation shade.

Not setting my liquid makeup before using powder

I can’t tell you how many times in my life I had put on liquid foundation and concealer, then gone straight to applying powder blush or bronzer without first setting my makeup with a translucent powder. The problem with this is the powder will look streaky and unnatural because it’s being attracted to the liquid exactly where you put it. Setting the liquid with a powder first allows your powder makeup to be applied in an even, natural, blended way.

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What makeup mistakes have you made in the past? Did you learn anything new from this post?

The Creative Closet | Pastel Me

Hooray, hooray for warmer weather! We had a bit of a cold snap here last week–I woke up to snow on Wednesday and I was not pleased. Not at all. Spring came back by the weekend though and I was so happy to be able to wear short sleeves again! I just love fresh, light spring colors. :)

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I’ve recently rediscovered my love for sewing. I bought this gorgeous watercolor floral fabric from Mood several weeks ago and used Leanne Barlow’s tutorial to make this kimono! If you were to really scrutinize it, you would see the stitching isn’t 100% perfect, but I’m really proud of how it turned out! The tutorial was surprisingly easy–I think I’ll have to make another kimono in the near future.

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Doesn’t Amanda always accessorize her outfits so perfectly? I always look forward to seeing what jewelry she’ll pair with her clothes. Ada looks ready for a sweet Spring date night in her pastel dress! 

Apart from the kimono, t-shirt, and my favorite Pink Blush Maternity jeans, everything else about this outfit is old. Like, really old. My sandals are from 2010 (I should really throw them away, but I can’t seem to bring myself to do so!), my necklace is from high school, and my sunglasses are also oldies from 2010.

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Kimono: made by me! (tutorial here)
Maternity T-shirt: Target
Jeans: c/o Pink Blush Maternity (There is an AWESOME 70% off sale going on until 11:59 PST tonight)
Sandals: Very old Aldo
Sunnies: Old Prada
Necklace: Old from Urban Outfitters

Next week’s prompt is one I’ve been waiting for!! In the past little while I’ve discovered my love for boho style, so I’m really excited to share a boho look and see what all you Boho Babes come up with as well! We’ll also be welcoming Maegen back to The Creative Closet next week! I’m excited to have her back and I am eternally grateful to Amanda for filling in for while Maegen has been enjoying her new baby snuggles!

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Please don’t forget to link back to my post or Amanda’s and let people know you’re joining us for The Creative Closet! Alternately, you can share the button in your post or on your sidebar.

The Creative Closet

Alright, ladies! I love me some pastels! Let’s see how you worked the softest of colors into your outfits. :)

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Our Favorite Caramelized Banana Ice Cream

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SensitiveSmiles #CollectiveBias

I’m officially done with and sick of cold weather. Utah has been a little finicky weather wise this month, but our weekend was warm enough that I thought it was time to break out our ice cream maker for the season. I absolutely love making homemade ice cream–especially since I can involve Joshua in the process. He’s so much fun to work with in the kitchen!

When the weather warms up, this caramelized banana ice cream is the perfect way to dust off your ice cream maker for the season! #SensitiveSmiles #ad

On our very first Christmas together, Dustin surprised me with the ice cream attachment for my Kitchen Aid, along with a few ice cream recipe books. Using what I learned from culinary school and some inspiration from those recipes, we have a favorite Caramelized Banana Ice Cream recipe that I am SO excited to share with you! It’s incredibly delicious. :)

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What I love about this ice cream is it has such a deep, rich caramel flavor developed from the stint the bananas take in the oven. This recipe also doesn’t have a ton of sugar, since bananas are so sweet all on their own.

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Caramelized Banana Ice Cream

makes one quart

3 medium sized ripe bananas
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 TBS salted butter, cut into small pieces
3 TBS granulated sugar
2 cups whole milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
pinch of coarse salt

Preheat the oven to 400º F. Slice the bananas into 1/2 inch thick pieces and toss them with the brown sugar and butter. Arrange in a single layer on a foil-lined baking sheet and roast in the oven for 30 minutes, stirring halfway into the cooking time.

Scrape the bananas and the brown sugar syrup into a blender or food processor. Add the milk, granulated sugar, vanilla, lemon juice, and salt, and puree until smooth. Chill the mixture thoroughly in the fridge. Once chilled, freeze it in your ice cream maker per the manufacturer’s instructions.

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As much as I totally love ice cream, there is one thing I hate about eating warm weather treats–tooth sensitivity. I wasn’t a good flosser growing up, so my top gumline has receded a bit, exposing more of the sensitive part of my top teeth than normal (floss your teeth, people!!!). My tooth sensitivity is the worst when I eat things that are cold and sweet. I’ve brushed with sensitive toothpaste before which sometimes helps, but I usually just have to grin and bear it if I want to enjoy my favorite ice cream.

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Due to my sensitive teeth issues, I was really excited to try out Colgate’s new Sensitive Toothbrush and Sensitivity Pen that I picked up at my local Smith’s (BTDubs, a lot of Kroger brand stores will likely have coupons for this product, so check out your local Kroger store’s webpage)!

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I love that the bristles on the toothbrush are extra soft–they don’t irritate my gums or the exposed areas of my teeth. The sensitivity pen is the coolest part, though. Not only is it really easy to use, it actually works as a proactive way to lessen tooth sensitivity–the Actis Enamel Pen blocks sensitivity at the source of pain. Simply: Brush, Apply, Go

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My grin and bear it days of eating warm weather treats are officially over! Next on my list? Frozen watermelon lemonade. :)

Do you have a sensitive smile? Which Colgate product is right for you? What is your favorite treat to enjoy when the weather warms up? 

Simple Strawberry Chia Seed Jam

I look forward to mail on Tuesdays, because I get a big huge stack of grocery ads. That might not seem like much to look forward to, but I know my Tuesday ads have the Sprouts ad in them–and Sprouts always has dang good produce sales. Not to mention their produce is top quality. This past week, they had a 72 hour sale with strawberries for $0.98/2 lb container! The strawberries looked absolutely beautiful, so I grabbed a couple of extra containers so I could make strawberry chia seed jam.

This strawberry chia seed jam is delicious and made with just 5 real, wholesome ingredients! Easy, no-can recipe. Just keep it in the fridge or freezer.

I absolutely love chia seeds! I add them to my smoothies, and they’re a major part of my favorite muffin recipe. I’ve long been intrigued by the idea that you can use chia seeds to make puddings, so I figured why not use chia seeds as the gelling agent in some easy, refrigerator jam? Chia seeds and a little bit of honey for extra sweetness sounded like just the treatment my beautiful strawberries needed.

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This recipe really couldn’t be simpler–just wash and hull your strawberries, then toss them in a blender or food processor with the chia seeds, some honey, lemon juice, and a pinch of salt and pulse until you’ve achieved the consistency you like for your jam!

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Hehe, I missed the bowl of my food processor just a tad bit while trying to get this shot….

Strawberry Chia Seed Jam

makes 2 1/2 pints

4 lbs strawberries, rinsed and hulled
1/4 cup chia seeds
2 TBS fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup honey, or more to taste
small pinch salt

Add all ingredients to a blender or food processor and pulse until blended. Add more honey if you like your jam sweeter. Split between mason jars, leaving a bit of headspace. Seal, and let sit in the fridge undisturbed for a few hours so the chia seeds can gel the jam.

I usually place my two pint size jars in the freezer until I can get through the first jar–this jam will keep in the fridge for 1 1/2-2 weeks.

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I love this jam with freshly baked honey oat bread. I just shared the recipe on My Cooking Spot, so be sure to check that out as well. It’s to die for all on it’s own, but even more so with this sweet, sticky jam on top. :)

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Enjoy! :)

Have you ever used chia seeds before? What is your favorite kind of jam?

Ignoring the Hustle

I didn’t post anything on Monday. At first, on Sunday night when I realized I had let my weekend get away from me without getting something written up for Monday, I went into a little bit of a panic. “What am I going to do?!” I wondered. And then a small, comforting thought crept into my mind. “Why do you have to do anything? Just let it be and go to sleep.”

Have you ever been in that situation? Have you found yourself putting SO much importance on your blog that your life tends to revolve around the tasks associated with it? I seriously love this little creative space of mine, but sometimes I put too much stock in just how important it really is. My blog is my business, yes–but I’m seriously kidding myself if I think my business is going to fail if I don’t deliver 5 posts a week, every single week.

When I woke up Monday morning with the nagging feeling that I should hurry and write something to post today, this popped up in my Instagram feed–just what I needed:

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I loved Hilary’s words about rest and renewal–how in a creative business (such as blogging), survival and thriving isn’t tied to how hard we work, but how well we create–which happens best when we’re rested and refreshed.

That was so much what I needed to hear and be reminded of. So often I give the advice to other bloggers, “If you’re feeling burnt out, take a break”, but rarely do I let myself take that advice.

So I decided I needed to teach myself a lesson and let my blog be silent for a day. And you know what? It felt good to let myself be the one making decisions for my blog, rather than letting my blog decide how I spend my time.

Do you ever get too caught up in your blog/creative business?

Promoting Your Blog on Twitter: How & How Often

Aside from being a super easy platform for connecting with other bloggers and creatives, I love Twitter as a tool to easily promote my own posts and bring increased traffic to my blog. There is a definite learning curve to effectively promoting your blog on Twitter–it certainly took me a little bit of time to figure out what works best for me. At this point, Twitter is responsible for 40% of the unique traffic (meaning a new user who’s never visited my blog before) to my blog–definitely enough to make me really want to take advantage of how I promote my blog on Twitter. This is what I’ve found works best for me.

A walkthrough of promoting your blog on Twitter including how to promote genuinely and how often to share your posts.

The How of Promoting Your Blog on Twitter

Twitter is unlike any other social media platform, in that you only have 140 characters to get your point across to your audience. Twitter is also so frequently updated that it’s easy for your tweets to get lost in the shuffle. So how do you use those 140 characters to you advantage when promoting your blog posts? Here are a few things to keep in mind:

Be eye-catching

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Like I mentioned, Twitter gets updated all the time–there are tons of tweets that a Twitter user has to scroll through in a given session on Twitter. Make your tweet stand out! If you have a relevant photo you can tweet, do it! This works especially well for recipes and fashion posts, as it’s easier to generate interest with an image than with a description.

Another technique you can use is using capital letters in your tweet. Don’t overuse them though–that makes it seem like you’re yelling. When I tweet out my first post promoting tweet of the day, I almost always start it with “NEW POST:” followed by a brief description and the link. That simple act of capitalizing helps my tweet stand out.

You can also capitalize key words like, “SALE” or “WIN” to catch people’s eye. Try it out and find what works for you!

Be genuine

It’s important to sound natural in your promotional tweets. Read through your tweets before you hit “publish”–if it sounds like a sales pitch or a gimmick to you, rewrite it!

I think in the interest of being genuine, it’s also very important to share content other than your own blog posts on Twitter–share life updates, “behind the scenes”, and promote other people’s work as well as your own. Bethany from Love Grows Design has a great post on natural social media marketing + some content ideas to help you out.

Be a solution

When I’m writing promotional social media snippets for my blog posts, I always ask myself, “How can this post be a solution for someone?” For example, when I tweeted last week about my Spinach and Ricotta Chicken Rollatini recipe, it occurred to me that that recipe is the perfect solution for people who want to make something that looks impressive, but also need something easy and quick for dinner. So I decided to market that recipe exactly that way in my tweets. Which tweet would you click through: ” Try this Spinach and Ricotta Chicken Rollatini recipe” or “Need an impressive dinner that’s quick AND easy to put together? Try this Spinach and Ricotta Chicken Rollatini!”

Include a call to action

Is there something specific you want from your readers in regards to your post? Are you looking for people to share similar experiences in response to a heartfelt post you shared about a struggle you’ve been facing? Tell people you want them to share their story with you when you promote your post on Twitter! When given a clear call to action, people know what you expect from them and are more likely to follow through.

Make each promotion unique

Don’t share the exact same promotional tweet more than one time! Change up your wording with each promotion, including different key words and calls to action. Not only does this ensure your followers aren’t going to get bored/annoyed by your content, it also helps you establish what kinds of promotional tweets resonate best with your audience. 

How often should I promote my posts?

There are a wide variety of opinions on this subject, but I’m going to tell you what I have found works for me. Oh, I use Hootsuite to schedule my social media promotion–now, the day a post goes live, I schedule all of these different tweets in one go and call it good! It’s made things a little easier when it comes to my Twitter schedule as well. :)

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The day of the post

Typically I will promote my post on Twitter twice on the day it goes live–once in the morning, and once in the afternoon. Like I mentioned above, I always word my promotional tweets differently.

The day after the post

I schedule another promotional tweet for that post the day after it goes live–usually in the evening, after people are winding down from dinner.

The week after the post

One week later, a tweet goes out again. By this point, you can almost completely recycle one of your older promotional tweets–try looking at your links analytics (which is another benefit to using a social media scheduler or link shortening service) to see which tweet had the most clicks and then change the wording slightly.

*Because I’ve usually scheduled my group of tweets for a certain post in advance, I often edit the later scheduled tweets after my post has been live for a week and I can see what promotion has worked best. I’m reminded to see if I need to edit my tweets, because when I sit down to schedule my tweets for the day, I see the previously scheduled tweet in the Publisher view of my Hootsuite dashboard. 

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Two weeks after & 1 month after

Same directive as the week after–see what kind of promotion has worked best for that post and edit any scheduled tweets as necessary.

Do I use this method with every post?

The answer is no. Some posts aren’t meant for repeat sharing because they lose their relevance in a given time period. For instance, if a post is seasonal–say “10 Perfect Stocking Stuffers for a Techie”, it would be silly to promote that tweet after Christmas. Also, why would I promote my 30 week pregnancy update a month after the fact? Use your best judgement in what posts actually deserve to be tweeted out multiple times.

A word on content promotion plugins

Some people swear by using plugins that tweet out old content automatically. Personally, I don’t like using things like that. If it works for you, fabulous! But here are my thoughts:

1) I like to be 100% in control of the content I’m sharing on Twitter. Content promotion plugins don’t allow me the discretion of which posts I’m sharing.

2) I like to be completely in control of what each tweet says–most content promotion plugins generate a tweet based on a template you’ve created. For instance, “From the archives: Old post title here, followed by link.” I see tweets like that in my feed constantly, and I NEVER click on them because there was nothing that grabbed my attention. So in my opinion, these plugins clog your feed’s valuable space–space you could be using to genuinely promote a tweet in your own words. 

What are your thoughts on promoting your blog on Twitter? What has worked for you? 

The Creative Closet | Singing in the Rain

Who else absolutely loves that musical? I think it’s hilarious and adorable. :)

Before I shot photos for this week’s prompt, I checked the weather to see if we would happen to have any rainy days I could shoot on. Last Wednesday was stormy and rainy all morning and I couldn’t wait for Dustin to get home from work so we could shoot some awesome, rainy day photos! Only, just an hour before he got home, the sun came out and dried up all the rain…

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I was so bummed! I actually got a pitcher of water and took it outside with me to make a puddle. When I sat down to edit the photos, Dustin and I started laughing. My makeshift puddle didn’t look like a puddle at all. It looks like I either peed, or my water broke! :P The things we do for photos, right? Oh well!

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Now Amanda has some legit rainy day puddle action going on! She looks so darling in her crochet trim dress! Rachel is seriously rocking the Hunter boots and cozy sweater. :)

Despite the pretend puddle fail, I really do love outfits like this for a rainy spring day. I think dresses or skirts with Hunter boots are just too cute! And I’m all about braids on a rainy day–no way am I going to try venturing out with my hair down. Humidity + my hair = major triangle head.

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I’m also finding I’m having the hardest time posing for photos lately. I don’t feel natural in front of the camera anymore–all I feel is very big and pregnant. So I apologize if I look like a goober in my photos for the next several weeks. I literally don’t even know what to do with my body anymore! At least babies are worth it. :)

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Top: Le Tote
Jacket: c/o Pink Blush (old)
Skirt: Mikarose (old)
Wellies: purchased gently used from Poshmark

I am SO excited for next week’s prompt–since it’s finally feeling like Spring, it’s only natural we dedicate a week to pastels! So join us next Tuesday for Pastel Me. 

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Please don’t forget to link back to my post or Amanda’s and let people know you’re joining us for The Creative Closet! Alternately, you can share the button in your post or on your sidebar.

The Creative Closet

Alright, ladies! Bring on the rain boots, umbrellas, and cozy rainy day looks!

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