Wednesday, February 27, 2013

The Blog and the Belt (& A Giveaway!)

A year ago, I went to a blog conference, BlissDom, my first blog conference.   Wearing a long sweater over a black shirt and dark jeans, I made my way into the ballroom of the hotel.  I was a very new blogger and felt like I had no business being there.  I knew no one.  I was nervous, insecure. I felt invisible.  I felt very grey.

Before the conference began there was a market where bloggers/crafters/artists had merchandise for sale.  I silently walked through the aisles watching the creative, fabulous women shining brightly with confidence behind their tables.  Then I came across a colorful table full of flower pins, belts, bags and more.  I recognized the items and remembered seeing them on a blog.  

In a bold move, I bought a flower belt and two flower pins.  I quietly asked the very nice woman behind the table how to wear the belt and she gave me some tips.

Little did I know, that blog, that woman and that belt would change my life.

It was Lindsey Cheney from the pleated poppy.  Yeah, that Lindsey and her amazing blog I link up with for What I Wore Wednesday(wiww).

pleated poppy WIWW link up was started by blogger/business woman extraordinaire, Lindsey, as a "fun way for us to encourage each other to simply get dressed each day, and get out of our pj’s or yoga pants."  

I put on the flower belt and wore it all weekend.  I came back home to metro Detroit and wore it some more.  

I added the flower pins to my black shirts and dresses.  
Then I started getting bolder, wearing a bright green sweater with a purple flower pin for example.   

I started linking up with WIWW and sharing my color journey.  That led to a fun vote where readers helped decide what I should wear to my 20th high school reunion (and define snappy casual) and a post where I conquered my fear of skinny jeans (orange/red jeans!). The comments and support and interaction were so encouraging. 

It's been a year since I went to BlissDom, met Lindsey, bought the belt and started my adventure with color.  Here's what I know, I am now a full blown rainbow of self-expression.  

I'm not only not afraid to wear color, but I'm mixing colors and patterns too.  I'm stacking bracelets, wearing the hoop earrings, adding a hot pink scarf and having so. much. fun.
Bright purple shirt from Old Navy.  Blue shiny flower pin from my 8-year-old daughter's drawer.

Again with the purple, "rock star super skinny jeans" from Old Navy.  Striped shirt clearance rack at Target a couple years ago.  Polka dot cardi from the 80% off rack at Kohls last week, it's my new favorite piece and only cost $10.

I feel braver, freer. I don't have to wait until I'm old to wear purple like the poem/book says, damn it I'm wearing it now.  

"You're so...colorful," someone told me the other day. 

"Thank you," I replied proudly (but I'm not sure if it was meant to be a compliment and that's okay).  

As I count down to my next BlissDom (three weeks!), I know my suitcase will be different from last year's, because I am different from last year. I am more confident, self-assured, self-aware, less afraid, less grey. It's not just my clothes, it's my writing, my relationships, my parenting--they are all more authentic, more colorful. And it all started with the belt.

In honor of the anniversary of THE belt and my journey of color and self-expression, I'm giving away a $25 gift certificate to the pleated poppy shop.

Lindsey has so many colorful, fabulous items in her store like these for example:  

the infinity scarf for $21

the super cute reusable tote bag for $17

the tiny pouch with turquoise chevron for only $16

Check out her store!
Leave a comment about what makes your life colorful and/or what risks you've taken and/or changes you've made in the last year. A winner (chosen by using will be announced Friday, March 1.

Come play with me on Instagram @jumpingwithmyfingerscrossed.
Oh yeah, and come follow me on Twitter @AngelaYBlood and subscribe to my MomPulse YouTube channel here.

This is My Second BlissDom!the pleated poppy blog


  1. Here's my risk: After being a SAHM for almost 25yrs, this year I have started taking classes to renew my old teaching license. I am very scared and very excited at the same time.

    1. I am excited for you!!! It's so hard to put yourself out there. Good luck and thanks for reading and commenting.

  2. super cute! you look like you have such a fun and playful personality!

  3. first of all, i am so excited to find another metro detroiter! well, technically, i am a metro flint-er (but i work in farmington hills, and grew up in troy)! :) yay for color, and i would say my biggest risk was attending my first blogging conference (the Influence Conference) last year, and I knew no one! This is a big deal for me since I have anxiety issues, etc. Also? I love that you have purple jeans!

    1. Hey Metro buddy! Oh anxiety issues, I totally relate. Good for you for taking that risk, the blog conference is a big one.
      Thanks for reading and commenting.

  4. I'm so glad you met her and started your color journey, because You. Look. Amazing. That last outfit is my absolute favorite!! You know I just bought my pink skinnies and I'll be (hopefully) rocking them at Blissdom!

    1. You in pink and me in purple at Blissdom, oh man we are going to be so colorful! I am seriously excited to hang out in person!!!

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