Excerpts From My (Imaginary) 2011 Blogging Diary

Excerpts From My (Imaginary) 2011 Blogging Diary - Not Dressed As Lamb

Ever wondered how different blogging was back in the day compared to today? Before social media took over and the word influencer hadn’t even been invented?

I had reason to try and find something I’d written in my first year of blogging – 2011 – the other day, and I stumbled upon a post that mentioned something that I hadn’t thought about for many, MANY years. Something that was SO IMPORTANT at the time in the world of (fashion) blogging, but that almost no one knows about today.

I thought it would be fun to share with you a typical week from my 2011 blogging diary… however, I didn’t ACTUALLY write a blogging diary back in the day and this isn’t a real week – it’s just a bit of fun I’m sharing. I’ve imagined a week where all the things that I did, and thought, and battled with in my first few months of blogging all happened over the course of seven (pretend) days. Please note, however, that it isn’t strictly accurate either in a time sense (I can’t remember exactly when I joined Instagram, for example) or in a details sense. So some of the facts may be a little out, but names have been changed to protect the innocent and I’ve used a heavy dose of artistic licence.

That’s not to say I didn’t think all these things or experience all this stuff – I did! It’s just a tongue-in-cheek look back at how different the blogosphere was back then. So, let’s start with Monday…


Excerpts From My Blogging Diary, 2011

*names have been changed…!


Published an outfit post. Really pleased with the photo, I feel like I’m getting the hang of posing at last!! I’m looking less awkward than I was in the beginning.

5 new followers on GFC [Google Friend Connect] today!!! Takes my total up to 76. It means I now have 8 more followers than Blue Seas* and only 20 less than The Portobello Place*. But Blue Seas usually gets about 20 comments on every post, I get 5-10 (if I’m lucky). I’ve read that you can get more followers by asking bloggers to follow you back in comments? Maybe I should start leaving comments. Can’t think of a way to ask people to follow you back without sounding desperate though.

Did a photo shoot after work, just what I wore to the office. David* [the boss] said I looked like a Victorian clown. Who cares, LOL.



Submitted my latest outfits onto Chictopia. Blue Seas got on the feature page AGAIN… what am I doing wrong? I don’t seem to get very many votes at all. But her style is very cool and she’s got those Jeffrey Campbell heels with the massive platforms I really want, so that’s probably why. Do I get the studded ankle boots or the peep toe sandals? Not sure, they are a lot of money.

I seem to do okay on Go Chic or Go Home, though. I need to spend time uploading all my looks on there. I’ve seen that really cool blogger Atlantic Pacific (Blair?) on there, she gets SO MANY VOTES. But she doesn’t leave anyone any comments for some reason.

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I got 15 comments on my latest blog post! Woo-hoo!



Got myself on Bloglovin’ last night where you can follow people’s blogs. Never been sure how you really follow people on GFC so this is good. I have 3 followers already, probably because I followed a ton of blogs and 3 have followed me back.

Something else I wondered today… shall I sign up to Twitter? Not sure I want to, it’s probably just for celebs. I just signed up to Instagram, and I’m using my iPad to take the pictures and use the app (ooh get me, using apps)! Can’t get my DSLR pictures on there, but these are meant to be informal pics about anything. LOVE all the filters and borders. Found another app which will add fake bokeh in stars or heart shapes. So cool, the filters make them look like old Polaroid pictures.

Also – published my outfit post with me holding my new great nephew Alfie ♥. Seemed only fitting that I call today’s outfit post “What’s it all about, Alfie?” Love quirky blog post titles.



Had my first negative comment on the blog today: “May I give you an advice? Don’t mix 2 different patterns, that doesn’t look good”. Hmm – not sure where she’s been, but pattern mixing is a new thing and I like it. Might have to write a post about why I’ll always wear whatever I like even if other people don’t like it (like people at work). Don’t care whether people actually LIKE my outfits or not, but it’s nice to have comments. But do I want negative ones? I read a comment the other day and she called people who leave nasty comments “trolls”, haha.

Published another outfit post (though I did most of it at work when I was bored).



OMG exciting: just received an offer of free clothes from a site called She In. Just have to take photos of me wearing the clothes they send me (for free!!!!!!) within two weeks. And a link to the blog post. And put it on Twitter and Instagram or something… maybe I’ll have to sign up to Twitter after all. Anyway I get free stuff!! I’ve “made it”, I’m a proper fashion blogger now.

Did another photo shoot after work. Nothing too exciting, but I was wearing about six different colours.

Best thing I found this week: something called Pinterest. A blogger I follow said she uses it all the time for saving pictures from anywhere. Signed up for that. Spent 2½ hours saving pictures to ‘pinboards’ I created like fashion, interiors, landscapes, etc. Shit, that’s going to be a TOTAL TIME SUCK if I keep using it.



Messed about with my blog layout practically all day. Changed fonts, created a new header (I used Photoshop after Keith showed me how to do the basics). Found a way to add icons for my Instagram and Bloglovin… it’s a bit fiddly but you make tiny jpegs of the icons, upload them to your sidebar, add links. I’m getting the hang of this layout stuff. Also created an About Me page – made it a “fun facts about me” page with pics of giraffes and bongos and other things I like. Found the images on Google.

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Took outfits photos at a get together at Auntie Carol’s*. Kelly* [my cousin] saw us taking photos (arghh nightmare – had to explain what it was for, wish we hadn’t tried to explain what a blog was). She asked if I’ll make any money from it – didn’t know what to say. I say Maybe? I don’t really know. Not sure who’s going to pay me to do anything? What would I do? The blogger What I Wore wrote the other day that she’s giving up her day job to work on her blog full time. How will she earn any money?! I’m confused.

Published an outfit post when we got home even though it was late. Got it done in 15 mins with today’s pic.



Did an outfit shoot today while out shopping (we found a quiet street where no one would see me). Keith’s very patient with me taking my outfit photos… though sometimes he seems cheesed off? He says he’s not, but I can’t tell. Need to get him to watch my outfit to check if anything is doing something weird, like a collar twisted round. We took a close-up detail shot today as well. Thought it would be nice to do more than just the full-length shot, that’s what other bloggers seem to do.

I’m really into loads of bangles and bracelets and watches ATM – I read it’s called an arm party (or was it arm candy)? Can’t remember. Anyway Atlantic Pacific does it, I love what she wears soooooo much. She wears loads of rings too. Make note: must buy more rings and pile them on. Had someone at work ask why I wear three watches the other day. I said, why not? I like watches.

Nearly forgot: Found another couple of bloggers in their 40s today. There are some out there, after all! Thought I was the only one in the UK but it seems there’s at least one other Brit. The few I’ve found are all in the US. Maybe there’ll be LOTS in the future and I won’t have to feel weird about being nearly 40 in the blogging world. Depends how long I do the blog for. Wonder if I’ll still want to do it after my one year project is up? Time will tell.

Gonna ‘pin’ some things to Pinterest then get to bed. Mustn’t be late as it’s work tomorrow, boo. At least Mondays are quiet, fingers crossed I can get a post written at my desk…

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  1. 9 September 2018 / 3:15 pm

    I loved reading this, C! The pain is real for every blogger. We’re all on a journey. This could so be written now for anyone just starting out. Love it!!! xoxo

    • catherine
      13 September 2018 / 1:05 pm

      Hehe thanks Sharon – you’re right that we’re all on a journey… I make so many mistakes even now!! We live and learn 😉

  2. Heidi
    7 September 2018 / 12:42 am

    OMG loved reading this so much!! It really was a different world back then, right?! And it wasn’t even all THAT long ago!

    Heidi || Wishes & Reality

    • catherine
      7 September 2018 / 12:20 pm

      No it wasn’t long at all Heidi… we’ll be looking back on 2018 in a few years’ time and laughing at what we do now I’m sure!!

  3. Naila khan
    6 September 2018 / 10:23 am

    Loved reading your blog….arm party!! Your ‘pretend diary’ resonated with me especially about the followers…x

    • catherine
      7 September 2018 / 12:24 pm

      Thanks Naila – follow for follow seems like SUCH a weird and disingenuous thing now, doesn’t it?!

  4. 4 September 2018 / 8:35 am

    Oh how I enjoyed this post, Catherine. There’s so much of me there, but it’s the me NOW! Maybe in 7 years’ time I’ll have got my act together and can laugh at my Fumbling Years too.
    Hugs, x

    • catherine
      7 September 2018 / 12:29 pm

      Glad you liked the post, Mary… don’t worry, blogging is a constant learning curve – I learn new things or stuff I had no idea about every day!!

  5. 3 September 2018 / 1:13 pm

    I loved reading your pretend blogging diary! Brought back memories – my blog turned 14 this year! Luckily my husband doesn’t mind taking the outfit photos for me, but I totally relate to getting caught doing it and then having to explain!
    Thank you for the chuckle!
    Helen x

    • catherine
      7 September 2018 / 12:30 pm

      Wow 14 years is a hella long time, Helen!! Questions about what you’re doing when you’re shooting ar the worst, aren’t they 😉

  6. 3 September 2018 / 9:49 am

    very funny post to read … and so true 😉

    Happy Monday xx

    • catherine
      7 September 2018 / 12:31 pm

      thanks Lui x

  7. Christine D
    3 September 2018 / 12:03 am

    Loved reading this post. This diary may be imaginary but it just reinforced to me how real you are. I always enjoy reading your posts. I’m not a blogger but I do like to keep up with whats going on in the world of fashion & the likes. Your posts are fun & informative – I have learnt a lot about the online world from you.

    • catherine
      7 September 2018 / 12:31 pm

      Christine that’s so lovely of you to say, thank you so much!!!!!! C x

  8. 2 September 2018 / 8:22 pm

    Wow! What a great read. I think I discovered your blog around 2012, Catherine. It was your post about a real face v a photoshopped face which the Daily Mail also wrote about (your real face, of course! ).

    I started an artist blog in 2011 and it certainly wasn’t like the one I do now. It was on Blogger and I didn’t have a clue about SEO, etc. It was actually a follow-up to one I kept in Japan where I wrote about my time living there. I can only imagine how much wider my readership would’ve been had I known what I do now.

    I’m really glad I started that artist blog back then because it taught me what NOT to do, plus there have been items I’ve harvested for my current. And I’ve learnt a lot from you, Forever Amber and many others since keeping my 2011 one.

    • catherine
      7 September 2018 / 1:10 pm

      I’ve learned what NOT to do over the years too, Emerald – there’s always so much to learn though! And that’s lovely of you to say that you’ve learned from me, I’ve learned a lot from Amber too!

  9. 1 September 2018 / 10:03 pm

    I love your imaginary diary. It sounds so much like me in my early blogging days, and uh, sometimes like blogging today! Hahaha. Thank you for this linkup. I just celebrated a big event and I want to say thanks for providing me this forum to share it. Women over 40 are blazing trails! You help lead the charge.

    • catherine
      7 September 2018 / 1:12 pm

      Melanie you’re such a love, thank you! I’ve just seen your big news – so exciting, and bloody well deserved!!

  10. 1 September 2018 / 9:12 pm

    What a fun, funny post – love it! You’ve mentioned some lots of thoughts and feelings that are so true. Have a happy weekend Catherine. Jacqui Mummabstylish

    • catherine
      13 September 2018 / 1:05 pm

      Thanks Jacqui, glad you enjoyed it! x

  11. 1 September 2018 / 5:56 pm

    LOL-very nice. I remember my humble start. It takes a little while and a lot of tinkering to figure out what and how you want to do things. Then a beautiful thing happens. You figure it out and it comes together. Thanks for hosting and I hope that you have a wonderful weekend

    • catherine
      13 September 2018 / 1:05 pm

      It DOES take ages, doesn”t it Patrick?! Thanks so much x

  12. 1 September 2018 / 3:21 pm

    loved this Catherine although i wasn’t a style blogger back then I was just starting to think about blogging and this made me laugh lots!
    much love Ashley x

    • catherine
      13 September 2018 / 1:06 pm

      Some things are always good for a giggle, Ashley… early blogging would be alien to many young bloggers starting now I think!

  13. 1 September 2018 / 2:33 pm

    It was great to read about what it was like back in the day. I”m just starting out (about 5 months now) and worry that the market is just too saturated to get enough following. I’m sticking in there though, so I guess we’ll see.

    • catherine
      13 September 2018 / 1:09 pm

      Unless there’s another Julie AKA This Main Line Life out there, Julie, it’s not saturated at all – it means you’re doing YOU and filling that gap in the market for you! No one can do you or say what you have to say except for you – believe me there will be PLENTY of people who are begging to hear your POV! Keep going and above all… enjoy it!! C x

  14. 1 September 2018 / 12:33 pm

    This is genius! Made me laugh. I still pin though. So funny that it was only really the main three social handles then and I lived on Twitter (still love it but I spend a lot of time on Instagram too). I started blogging in Nov 2010 and read back some early posts when I replaced the tiny photos with bigger ones (well, the ones I could) and it was strange but wonderful to reminisce. While so much has changed, what’s remained is our voices and commitment to storytelling, the lifeblood of blogs. I actually read my old childhood and tween/teen diaries when writing Mumboss too: pretty boring days baha with a list of the boys I’d ‘snogged’ in the back and the dreams I had (to be a TV Presenter). It’s a lovely exercise to reflect, thanks for the reminder here xxx

    • catherine
      13 September 2018 / 1:14 pm

      OMG I found my teenage diaries when we moved, Vicki – I honestly thought I’d thrown them out!!!! I might have to do a post with some extracts from them: Michael J Fox and Rob Lowe definitely featured quite a bit… 😉

  15. 1 September 2018 / 12:22 pm

    Such a cute post, Catherine! Thanks for making me smile and chuckle!


    • catherine
      13 September 2018 / 1:14 pm

      Hehe my pleasure, Shelbee – thank you!

  16. 1 September 2018 / 8:57 am

    LOL this really took me back, Catherine! Absolutely loved it.
    Suzy xx

    • catherine
      13 September 2018 / 1:14 pm

      I’m so glad Suzy, heehee thank you x

  17. 1 September 2018 / 8:27 am

    How lovely to read! Have a great weekend!

    • catherine
      13 September 2018 / 1:15 pm

      thanks Nancy!

  18. 1 September 2018 / 7:45 am

    That all sounds familiar, especially the all day messing with the blog format!

    • catherine
      13 September 2018 / 1:15 pm

      Oh lord I used to spend aaaaaages doing that, Vick!!

  19. 1 September 2018 / 7:20 am

    This is so funny as it’s like me now! I really have to get into the habit if putting my pics on Pinterest. I’ve got a board for my blog but am pretty bad at keeping it up to date. As for the ooh new follower, thats like me and my new YouTube venture. It reakky is starting again as blog followers don’t tend to migrate.

    Thanks for the giggle and reality check.
    I’ve linked 2 blogs as usual but also a YouTube

    • catherine
      13 September 2018 / 1:16 pm

      I’m really bad at keeping Pinterest up to date too, Anna…! Glad you liked the post, thank you x

  20. 1 September 2018 / 12:54 am

    Your “made up” diary is so funny–and spot on! I started the same way and that was only 1 1/2 years ago!! haha! I still wish my husband would check to see if my outfit is doing something funny! (Often it is and the photos just have to be posted that way!) The Social Media part is still a bit of a time suck, but necessary, I guess. Thanks for sharing your “journey.” Loved it!

    • catherine
      13 September 2018 / 1:16 pm

      Thanks Darlene! So glad you enjoyed it 😀

  21. 31 August 2018 / 10:32 pm

    What a funny peek into your early days, Catherine! Same thoughts, different forums now (Instagram, Twitter, etc). I didn’t blog back then but some things are exactly the same… SheIn for example! xxx

    • catherine
      31 August 2018 / 10:55 pm

      She In and some others I couldn’t remember the names of…!! Everything’s so different now , lol

  22. 31 August 2018 / 10:07 pm

    This post really made me smile! Good to know that even established boggers had timid beginnings. Though I know the world has changed loads since 2011, I guess some problems/worries are the same if you are starting blogging in 2018 (or 2015 like me).

    • catherine
      31 August 2018 / 10:56 pm

      Oh lordy I worried about everything, Alex!! I was obsessed with my follower numbers on GFC, now most bloggers don’t even know what it is…!

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