Say Hello To The New Look Online Stylist!
Well Hello! Notice anything new?
I am SO excited to finally reveal the new look Online Stylist blog to you!
Racing pulse, clammy hands and nervous excitement don’t even begin to cover how I feel right now!
It’s taken just over a year for this new incarnation to come to fruition. A year that involved extracting detail from an overflowing mind and evolving it into what you see on the screen in front of you now.
Since I began sharing my thoughts and inspirations here in 2009, this blog has been through a few design changes. And I look back on each of them with love as they form part of the growing process that comes with evolving it from a hobby blog into something resembling a business.
Towards the end of summer 2016, I found myself at a bit of a life crossroads for all sorts of reasons.
With the blog playing a huge role in my life and the content pretty much populated by the life I choose to live, I started thinking about what lies at the very heart of the Online Stylist blog and its core values.
It’s about living a stylish, inspired & positive life…
In short, those values will always be the same. They’re about living a stylish, inspired & positive life and finding ways to celebrate the joy to be found in the small things.
But as time drew on, I felt that how I was attempting to get the narrative across could be improved and refined.
Moreover, I wanted it to properly reflect the kind of life I lead now. I’ve always been a firm believer that a lifestyle blog should evolve as life does.
Refresh & Rebrand
Showcasing my own style doesn’t have to take the form of me traveling to London with a suitcase full of outfits.
Sharing what I’ve learned about building a blog from the ground up could be improved upon and broken down into lots more specifics.
There should be more airtime dedicated to amazing women with entrepreneurial spirit and definitely more sharing of the brilliant resources and communities I’ve been discovering of late.
A life lived near the coast and in the countryside should be celebrated.
Wardrobe staples, shopping edits and style inspiration should be plentiful.
The lifestyle elements of food and interiors need lots more exploration… especially as both seem to occupy increasingly larger parts of my brain these days.
Opportunities for coffee and cashmere cravings should be indulged in frequently and mostly monochrome living must be encouraged!
And more importantly, if these are the things that float your boat too, then you need to be able to access them with ease.
A new blogging chapter
This new blogging chapter sets out my inspirations for stylish living in a way that I hope you’ll find easier to navigate.
The decision to refresh the blog layout, categories and subject matter was two fold.
I want to improve upon and expand the spread of future content. And also enable you to navigate the site more easily, finding what you’re after a lot quicker.
The rebranding part comes from that innate need that simmers under the surface for most of us at one time or another.
Nothing feels more invigorating than an image overhaul, a huge tidy up, a seasonal wardrobe edit or a fresh start.
This new look blog feels like a combination of all the above in one hit. That’s one powerful revamp vibe!
Layout & Navigation
Take a scroll though the menu bar and it will take you to some new content category pages.
From there you can choose from further categories in another menu bar… et Voila! You can browse through a huge archive of posts in easy snippet formats.
The latest new content can always be accessed from the rotating image banner at the top.
For many of us, myself included, Instagram is becoming a huge influence when it comes to shopping habits.
I know that giving over your email address to yet another organisation can be a little off-putting for some folk. As one who receives a gazillion emails a week, I totally get this!
Having a new Shop My Instagram page on the blog means that you can easily access the pieces or inspiration featured without having to sign up to receive the Like To Know.it emails if you don’t want to. You talked… I listened!
Of course you can still shop all the Like to Know it tagged images straight from Instagram on your mobile device in the normal way too. I personally love it… but my bank manager? Not so much!
I Couldn’t have done it without…
I have to say a huge thank you, firstly to Emily Wells Design who brought my ideas to life.
First came a mood board and then a logo, some beautiful clean fonts and a colour palette that didn’t veer to far from my mostly monochromatic path.
And of course the amazing team at Chloé Digital who took me through a category clean up exercise (Boy were my categories in need of a clean!), the layout design, site build, test and finally implementation.
You guys absolutely rock and this blog wouldn’t be where it is now without you! Thank you!
There are also a few lovely supportive people have had to do lots of listening and soothing of concerns and self-induced stress – you know who you are.
You are my girl squad and I cherish our community that we’ve built. Thank you!
And lastly but never least, to you… you gorgeous, patient and supportive blog readers for putting up with me warbling on about #TOSrefresh2017 since I don’t know when. Which in the end turned out to be #OSrefresh2017!
Your thoughts and opinions mean everything so please feel free to drop me a line here via email or in the comments below to let me know what you think of the new look Online Stylist, the logo, layout and navigation.
And feel free to share the new update on social media using #TOSrefresh2017 (one last time for that The!).
Likewise if you come across any glitches, please do drop me a note as I’ll be in housekeeping mode for a few days.
YouTube here we come!
Finally, in the spirit of trying something new, I thought it would be fun to encapsulate the ethos of Online Stylist in something other than words and still images.
So with the help of the lovely Lauren from The Female Edit, I made a video…
And now that I have this new framework in place, it’s time to get on with the rest of the year… and some serious content creation.
But before that, I have a date with a bottle of the good stuff (Veuve Clicquot as if you needed to ask!) and the long suffering husband who’s been listening to my rebrand ramblings since February!
Photography: Sarahlou Francis
Video: Lauren at The Female Edit