Friday, July 8, 2016

Birthday Q&A!

black lace romper, more affordable options HERE and HERE // Steve Madden heels
similar pink wallet // Michele watch // David Yurman bracelet
YSL lipstick in "tropical pink"

Happy Friday you guys!! In Wednesday's post, I asked for questions that you would want to see answered in a Q&A post. Thank you so much to everyone who contributed questions!! I couldn't answer every single question, so I picked some of the most popular ones. They're split into three categories: personal, fashion/beauty, and blogging. Let's jump right in!

PERSONAL

*What were you doing before blogging full time?
I was a Public Relations Strategist at a small marketing/PR firm in Greenville, S.C. To be honest, I didn't like it very much! The work was fine - I loved the writing and the social media side of it - however the actual company had a lot of internal problems and turnover. It wasn't the best company for my first job, but I did learn a lot about the real world. 

*Where is somewhere you would love to travel to?
My dream is to go to Italy to visit Cinque Terre... It looks like such a magical place. My second runner up is Santorini, Greece.

*How does your faith influence your daily life?
I don't talk about my faith a lot on my blog/social media, because I never want anyone to feel like I'm "preaching," but faith plays a huge role in my life! I was blessed to grow up in a Christian home and came to know the Lord at a young age. With blogging and social media, it's easy to fall into the trap of comparing yourself to others or wanting approval from others. I'm constantly being reminded that other people's opinions don't really matter... when you live for Jesus, His approval is the only one worth seeking.

*What's your secret talent?
I can lick my elbow! Is that a talent?

*How did you meet your current boyfriend and how long have you been together?
I met my boyfriend in Greenville, S.C., through a mutual friend. We actually met 18 days after I moved to Greenville, and have been dating for the past three and a half years (on and off!).

*You and your boyfriend have broken up before. What are the "rules" for getting back together with an ex?
Every relationship is different... there really aren't any "rules." Getting back together really depends on that specific relationship, the people involved and the reason for the breakup in the first place. If true love is really present, then both people will find a way to work things out. The key is that both people have to be willing to compromise and both have to be equally committed to making the relationship work. 

*What is your favorite thing about your boyfriend?
This is tough!! I would have to say his fierce loyalty. He is the most loyal person I've ever met - if you're his friend he will defend you until his death. He's my biggest supporter and has my back in every single situation. I also love that we balance each other out in a lot of ways - he's very logical, whereas I'm very emotional... sometimes he has to talk me back down to earth!

*Are you living in Charlotte still?
Nope! I moved to Winston Salem back in April, but I still visit Charlotte a couple times per week. My parents live there and some of my best friends live there!

*What are your favorite places to eat and favorite things to do in Charlotte?
This is a tough question because I love so many restaurants in Charlotte! My favorite restaurant of all time is RuRu's... simply put, the BEST Mexican food I've ever had. The entire menu is named after movie quotes (so there's a salad called the "Bend and Snap", for example). For coffee, I love Not Just Coffee in the Seventh Street Marketplace. Other restaurants I love include Thai Taste, Cafe Monte, Rusan's Sushi, and Luna's Living Kitchen. My favorite brewery is Sycamore Brewing!

*What is one thing you love to do that isn't related to blogging, travel or fashion?
Read! I am a total bookworm. I have had my nose in a book ever since I was a little kid (ask my parents, one time I read eleven books in a day!). I also went through some tough years during college and my "escape" was fiction novels where I could get lost in the story and characters. 

*If your time blogging was to end in a year, what would you like to do for work?
I would love to manage social media for a brand/company... or be a journalist! My true passion has always been writing (and reading). I would also love to be a novelist but I don't know if I'm creative enough for that!

*What do you like to do for alone time/down time just to relax?
Like I said, I love to read, so if I am reading a good book that's the best way for me to relax. I also like to have "spa nights" and take a bath, put on a face mask and watch YouTube tutorials.

*What do you eat in a day and do you work out? What kind of workouts do you do for toned legs?
I did an entire blog post on what I eat in a day here! The short answer to the workout question is yes, I do work out several times per week. Due to the amount of questions on this topic, I'm putting together a whole post on it (so stay tuned!).

FASHION/BEAUTY

*Do you have hair extensions? If not how do you grow your hair so long and full? How do you keep it that way?
No, I don't have hair extensions and have never worn them. Since I was a teen, I've always had really thick hair... I used to HATE it! My hair is naturally curly and in college I used to scrunch it... it was also blonde (so glad those days are over). I try to take really good care of my hair by only washing it once or twice a week and deep conditioning it often. Lately I have been using this product and it makes my hair feel MUCH healthier. 

*What shampoo and conditioner do you use?
I switch up my shampoo and conditioner a lot so that my hair doesn't get used to one product (which can weigh it down). Last week I ordered this shampoo and the matching conditioner and started using it this week - so far I really like it (I'll update you when I'm done with the bottle).

*Do you take supplements for your hair?
I have in the past, but not consistently. I actually just picked up this bottle from Target. The vitamins are yummy and I actually look forward to taking them each morning, but it's too early to see any effects from it.

*What's your favorite outfit post you've ever done?
This one from 2014 :) I love the fall so much and this outfit was one of my favorites that I've ever worn!

*Where are your favorite places to shop?
I obviously love Nordstrom because they carry such a wide variety of brands and price points, and you can't beat the free shipping and returns. Other favorite online retailers include Revolve, ASOS and LuLu*s. I also really love finding cute local boutiques that carry unique brands that no one has ever heard of!

*What is your absolute favorite designer handbag?
My Chanel classic flap bag in beige. It was a bag that I coveted and saved up for, so it was really meaningful when I bought it! And it goes with everything in my closet.

*What are the most comfortable shoes you own that are also trendy? We see you a lot in heels and lace-up flats but there must be a go-to just for going around town everyday. 
For sure! I wear these sandals just about every single day in the summer. They are the most comfortable shoes I own, and the color ("sand patent") matches every single outfit. I wear them to run errands, on the way to Pure Barre, to grocery shop, etc. They're my hands down favorite!

BLOGGING

*Does your mom still take pictures for your blog?
Yes she does! It's a little trickier now that I'm in Winston and she's in Charlotte. We've worked out a schedule where she drives to Winston one day a week, and I drive to Charlotte one day. 

*What lens do you recommend for someone who has a Nikon D3300 with a kit lens and wants to upgrade her lens game BUT is on a bit of a budget? 
The 50mm f/1.8 lens is a phenomenal lens and the one I would recommend for portrait photography or fashion blogging. My friend Emily and I call it the "nifty fifty!" The important thing with any lens is learning how to shoot it in manual mode. I love when pictures have a blurry background (called "bokeh") and in order to achieve this, you have to shoot on manual with the F-stop as low as it will go (with the 50mm, you would shoot on 1.8). 

*What lens do you use?
I have several different lenses, my favorite is the 50mm that I talked about above. I also have a Tamron 24-70mm f/2.8 lens which I take on all of my trips and use for indoor photography. The nice thing about this lens is it's not fixed, so you can zoom in and out. This makes it really convenient when you want to capture the outfit, but some of the background and scenery too (especially if you're in a tropical location!). If you're interested in a new lens, the best thing to do is go to your local photography store and talk to the people that work there about your budget and what you'd like to accomplish with the lens. 

*How did you and your mama learn photography? 
Trial and error! We have taken MILLIONS of photos (no joke!) together at this point and we had to learn the hard way. We both watched YouTube videos in the beginning, but the best way for us to learn was taking photos on different settings with different lenses and seeing what worked and what didn't.

*What settings do you use on your camera?
It changes in different lighting. When I'm shooting outdoors in the sunlight, I set my ISO at 100, F-stop as low as it can go, and adjust the shutter speed from there.

*What was your process when you were a beginning blogger, before you could afford to buy as many new clothes?
When I was first starting out, fashion blogging wasn't as "trendy" and no one really knew what they were doing, haha. I wore a lot of old clothes, borrowed clothes from my mom's closet, and I also worked with boutiques that would send me clothes for free in exchange for a blog post. For several years I didn't make a dime off of blogging, so I just worked with what I had!

*How do you make money blogging full time?
I make money through affiliate links, sponsored posts and through advertising. Sponsored posts are pretty straightforward; affiliate links are a little bit trickier. Some affiliate linking programs pay a blogger per click (as a reward for getting the consumer to the retailer's website) and other services pay the blogger a small commission only if the item is purchased.

*What is your favorite place you've ever gotten to visit because of blogging opportunities?
My favorite place I've ever been is St. Lucia. There was just something about that trip that seemed really magical to me... I don't think I've every been to a prettier place! Our hotel room had the fourth wall missing, and it was such a cool experience to fall asleep at night listening to the sounds of wildlife and the waves crashing all at once. I also loved St. Lucia because I was in a really creative state of mind on that trip and was feeling inspired by everything around me... which made taking photos and creating content so easy!  

*How long does a blog post typically take you to write?
It takes a long time!! The amount of work it takes on the back-end to make a blog post "come to life" is pretty surprising. The initial phase is brainstorming - what do I want the post to be about, what do I want the outfit to look like - and from there I spend hours researching, ordering online and scouting shooting locations. When the clothing comes in, I pick out accessories, shoes and other props that are needed to complement the outfit. Photographing the outfit takes less than half an hour, but picking out the best photos and editing them is very time consuming. Actually sitting down to write the post is the easy part! 

*Do you have a media team or do you do all of the negotiating with brands yourself?
I do everything myself. One of the toughest parts about blogging is that you wear a ton of different hats! I negotiate with brands, read contracts, answer emails, take photos, brainstorm content, strategize, edit photos, run social media accounts, pick out merchandise, and more, all by myself.

*What are the struggles of blogging? Everything about the job seems glamorous and amazing.
Anyone with their own business knows that you pour your whole heart into it - and can never really take a break from it. Like any small business owner, I work at all hours of the day and night and sometimes more than 80 hours a week. Bloggers make their lives and trips look effortless and fun - portraying that image is all part of the job. However there's SO much that goes on behind the scenes and some of it is very negative. I've actually developed really bad anxiety from blogging, since I feel like I'm under a constant microscope. There is always something to be stressed about; there are constantly deadlines looming, instagrams that need to be taken, posts that need to be written, emails that need to be answered, conference calls that need to be scheduled, and beneath that is the desire to keep improving content and keep growing your pageviews, all while staying inspired. I put a lot of (sometimes unnecessary) pressure on myself to get it all done perfectly. You also have to have really thick skin... I put my heart into styling outfits and photographing them in creative ways, only to have someone copy it the next day. (Edit: I'm not talking about readers! I'm talking about other bloggers with sizable audiences who copy exact outfits & try to monetize them. I've even had people post my photos & pretend that they took them.) When you start a blog you're also opening yourself up to a lot of criticism... I used to have very thin skin, but I wouldn't have survived long in the blogging world if I had stayed that way.

(I don't want you all to think I'm complaining or that I'm not thankful for my job, because I am! The reason I put so much work into is because it's my passion, and I feel so blessed to be able to make a career out of something that I love so much. I just wanted to share with you guys some of the downsides that people often don't think about.)

*How much of your clothing posted do you actually purchase versus what is gifted from sponsors?  How can we tell whether or not something is brought on by yourself or because of a company sponsorship?
I always disclose if an item is gifted or a post is sponsored. One of the reasons you don't see the "C/o" next to a lot of items is because I purchase almost every single outfit myself. Most of my blog posts are not sponsored (FYI, if it is sponsored, I include the words "Sponsored by ___" at the end). I like picking out and buying outfits myself because that gives me complete creative control over both the outfit, photographs and the content. I want each and every item I put on this blog to be an honest representation of my style. When I do decide to work with brands, I'm picky about the companies I work with and even then, I always, always, always pick out the clothing items myself. 

*What's your advice to beginning bloggers?
There's so much I could say to answer this question, but my biggest advice would be to do it for the right reasons. When I lived in Charlotte, I agreed to meet a reader for coffee and she immediately expressed her interest in starting a blog in order to "get famous" and to "make a lot of money." I unfortunately think that a lot of people start blogs for this reason - and they're in it for the wrong reason. When I started a blog, I didn't know it was even possible to make money from it - never once in my lifetime did I ever think it would turn into a career. The most important factor in starting a blog is having a passion for it. Before you start a blog, ask yourself, "If I never make a cent off this blog, will I be okay with that?" If you're answer is yes, then you are doing it for the right reasons.

Blogging is a different beast now than it was in 2011, when I started. It has become very "trendy" to start a blog, and many people vastly underestimate how hard it is and how much thought, planning and work go into it every single day. There are so many bloggers right now... to really stand out in the blogging world, you have to find your own motivation, be self driven and create unique, original content. 

*What is your favorite part about blogging?
My absolute favorite part about blogging is you guys!!! I love hearing from readers and interacting with y'all. Just a simple tweet from a reader can make my day. And one more huge thing I love, love, love about blogging is that I get to be creative every day. Through blogging I've discovered a true passion (not just for style) but for photography - life is so messy and chaotic, how cool is it that you can capture a moment in time with your camera, and make it look perfect?

I appreciate you guys SO MUCH, thank you for making everything worthwhile. 

SHOP THE POST:

113 comments:

  1. Happy 26th Birthday! This was such a fun post! Enjoy your day!

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  2. Oh wow!! This is such a great post and I have loved reading some more personal facts about you. This brings you much closet to us, your readers and vice versa. I have cracked at your special "talent", you're so funny. :D

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY and I'm wishing you all of the best in you private life and all of the future business endeavours too. :)

    http://www.lartoffashion.com/2016/07/08/5-instagram-pointers/

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  3. This was such a fun post to read. I hope you have a fantastic birthday!

    Fizz and Frosting

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  4. Happy Birthday sweet girl! Enjoy your day!

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  5. happy birthday my dear!
    xx
    http://thedemeler.com

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  6. Happy birthday Caitlin. Absolutely loved this Q&A :)

    Arum Lilea

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  7. Loved reading this and learning more about you! Happy Birthday girl!

    www.rosyoutlookblog.com

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  8. Happy birthday Caitlin! May God continue to bless and keep you!

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  9. Happy, Happy Birthday! Loved this post.

    Zelle
    Southern Style

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  10. First and foremost HAPPY BIRTHDAY! I think this is one of my favorite posts because we get a little glimpse into your personal life (which I know a lot of bloggers don't like to do) and you answered a lot of helpful questions for the rest of us bloggers. I agree with what you said about how when people ask about blogging because they want to become famous and make money! I've had a few friends ask me how they can start blogging for the same reason and I usually tell them that's not why you should start because your readers will sense that. I'm a baby blogger as I like to call myself and I do it because I enjoy doing it, yes the struggle is real with anxiety! I'm constantly worrying and proofread my posts like 10 times before I post them and with working full time it definitely gets hard.

    I wish you do more posts like this in the future!

    www.jerseygirltexanheart.com

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  11. Just wanted to say Happy Birthday!!! This post was so great and definitely a favorite of mine. You are my favorite blogger because of your honesty, grace and cute personality!! Keep it up! Have such a good birthday!

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  12. Happy Birthday pretty girl! Long time reader, first time commenting :) Have a wonderful day!!

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  13. happy birthday!!! I have to comment about the sponsorship question. I love that you disclose if it's a sponsored post and generally pay for your own clothes! Nowadays, with so many brands teaming up with bloggers, I never really know if the product is something the blogger genuinely likes or is just posting about because of the sponsorship. I'm happy to know that if you're rockin' it, you would honestly buy that piece of clothing.

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  14. Happy Birthday! Great Post! I loved reading all these fun facts :)

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  15. Happy Birthday!! Loved this post, definitely learned new things!

    Kendal // Life With Kendal

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  16. First of all, happy birthday! Secondly, loved this post because I love when bloggers respond to questions (and so many!). A small business is definitely demanding and I can appreciate all the work that goes into it. Hope you have a great weekend!


    How Gorgeous

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  17. These pictures are so fun and you are gorgeous!

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  18. Happy Birthday! You and Emily are my favorite bloggers and it was so nice to read a little bit more about you!
    I look forward to your workout post!!! By the way, I love your content lately, so many helpful cooking, makeup, travel, etc posts. Of course I love your fashion too!

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  19. Happy birthday! I was looking forward to this Q & A since you mentioned earlier this week. Thanks for another wonderful post sharing your charm and honesty. Love your blog so much and read it first thing every morning!

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  20. Happy Birthday Caitlin!! I really appreciate you taking the time to go over this Q&A. I enjoyed it!

    www.rdsobsessions.com

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  21. Thank you for this wonderful Q&A! I enjoyed learning more about your blogging! Happy Birthday!

    Sweetly, Sally // www.sweetlysally.com

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  22. This is an excellent post. I've learnt so much from this Q&A. And happy 26th!

    Mich x
    michjosephblog.wordpress.com

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  23. HAPPY BIRTHDAY GORGEOUS!!! I wish you only the best and am so inspired by youπŸ’—

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  24. Happy Birthday Caitlin! <3 I love the romper! It looks so good on you :)
    www.simplynancyblog.com

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  25. The happiest of birthdays to you!! Thank you for giving us a present and answering these questions! I love Q&A posts. Thanks for your honesty and insight!

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  26. love the Q and A! I have been following your blog for a while but I sadly hadn't taken the time to get to know more about you and how you came into blogging. Thanks for sharing background and being honest about the inner workings of being a blogger.

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  27. I loved reading this and you're so right about how much work it is to blog, but if you do it because you love it, it's all worth it. Happy birthday gorgeous!!

    xo, Nina
    Law of Fashion Blog

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  28. Very open and honest in this blog post. Thank you for sharing and giving so much insightful information. I enjoy your blogs very much.

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  29. Happy Birthday! I loved reading all of your answers. I'm with you and love to escape into books-English major life. I hope you have the best birthday weekend. Jess at Just Jess

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  30. Loved this post, and you look absolutely amazing! That is by far the coolest romp I've ever seen. Happy Birthday!!
    xoxo, www.piperellice.com

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  31. Happy birthday!! Just wanted you to know, the link to your favorite fall post doesn't work. I tried to click to see which one it was and it says the site can't be reached! :)
    www.amemoryofus.com

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  32. Happy birthday, & thank you for answering our questions!! :)

    www.Melanie-V.com

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  33. Happy Birthday! Thank you for all the hard work you put into your blog, I enjoy reading every morning just as much as you love to write it! It has become my routine, email, pay bills, read SC&P and catch up on my schedule before my work day officially starts!

    Thank you again, and have a great day!

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  34. What a great post Cait! So informative and I can't wait to hear more about your diet & fitness routine. Have a wonderful birthday!

    Deanna
    www.DesigningGal.ca

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  35. Happy Birthday and love the q and a post! I related to a lot of the blogger questions and your right it is so hard but rewarding isn't it.

    Jackie | fashionxfairytale |

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  36. HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Beautiful pictures and I love the Q&A!

    Kim

    http://bit.ly/29zWK9W .. my EVERYDAY makeup essentials!

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  37. Happy birthday! I know where you're coming from with the 80 hour weeks. My husband has his own business (tech, not fashion - ha) and sometimes it's all we can do to keep up with deadlines, navigate the crazy world of business taxes, and roll with income fluctuations. My hat is off to you for juggling all the things that go into managing this successful blog. It is a VERY big accomplishment!

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  38. Loved this post! Happy Birthday, Caitlin!! Hope it's amazing :)

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  39. Reading this post was so enjoying, Caitlin! I love the fact that you're a bookworm (like yours truly) and that you have been able to stay true to your own morals and style even as the blogging world has evolved into what it is today. Keep doing what you're doing, and happy birthday!

    Tori A. from Prep For A Day

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  40. Happy 26th!!! Loved this post! One of my faves as I get to see a part of who you are. I appreciate you taking time to answer these questions, especially the ones about blogging as I started my own blog in April. I like knowing what to expect and what goes into it if I want to take it far. Thanks again! And you looked gorgeous in that outfit!!

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  41. Hi! I've been reading your blog for years but just realized you live in Winston! I just graduated from Wake Forest and honestly really do miss Winston. Happy birthday!

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  42. Happiest birthday wishes to you! I don't comment a lot on your posts, which I need to get better at. I love following you and seeing all your creative looks come to life. I read the article published about you and what you have done with your success, and it is all so earned. I love to hear how hard working and dedicated you are, and not for the sole purpose of money. It's refreshing to hear!

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  43. Welcome to the 26 club! Happy birthday!
    Jabeen x
    http://www.spilling-the-beans.co.uk/

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  44. I enjoyed reading! Happy Bday!!!
    Love,
    www.thestyleventure.com

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  45. Happy Birthday!

    I've recently started a blog and hearing that it takes you a long time to get each post up reassures me that the reason it takes me awhile to write a post is because I want quality content, not that I'm not "good enough". It's really inspiring how frequently you post, and I have no doubt the amount of time you spend.

    Have a great weekend!

    Emily // thirdandgirl.com

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  46. Happy birthday! At 26 I was caring for my daughter. It nice to hear somebody that is passionate about their career. Best wishes! Susan

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  47. Happy birthday !! It was so fun to read the q&a , I'm surprised to know your mom takes your pictures , she is amazing at it . I'm going to start watching videos to see what can I learn from that
    X,Abril
    The color palette

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  48. I absolutely LOVED this post. As a blogger myself, I love looking up to those that have been in the groove of things for a while. I always look forward to your posts!
    The blogging section was my favorite. The camera questions helped me so much!
    I would actually love if you did a camera post!!

    Www.BaylorGirlInPearls.com

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  49. Happy Birthday! I hope you have a wonderful day (: I really enjoyed reading this post, you should do this again sometime.

    xoxo Kristie

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  50. Happy Birthday, Caitlin!! Very thorough and candid post - enjoyed every minute of reading it! I forgot to ask (but maybe for your next Q & A) about how you edit your AMAZING photos!? Also in regards to copying, hey - imitation is the biggest form of flattery. I personally know that I have copied one of your outfits! (the black and white skirt and yellow top ) But isn't that the point of your posts!? ;)

    Continued success and good vibes to you!

    Lisa
    www.theeverydayelevated.com

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    1. Hey Lisa! Thanks so much for commenting, I use Lightroom to edit all of my blog photos! And you're right - I totally love when readers copy my outfits because that is the point of them! I should have specified - it just sucks when other bloggers with sizable followings buy the same outfit and wear it with the exact same shoes/handbag, whatever, and try to monetize it!

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    2. Lisa, I think Caitlin is being sweet, but I don't think other bloggers should copy outfits. Caitlin obviously puts a lot of thought into her outfits as well as money, and creativity. If someone is going to have a blog, I honestly feel they should come up with their own ideas. This is what makes following any of you all interesting. I'm not a blogger, a teacher. But I have great respect for much it takes to be one. Just my thoughts on the subject.

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  51. Happy Birthday! I love how real this post is! You are amazing! :)

    Rachel
    Simply Rachel Nicole

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  52. Thank you so much for doing this post! I really appreciated your honesty and answers! You are an inspiration to me because you do your work with excellence and it really shows! It always encourages me to do my work with excellence! I'm in a different field but the heart is the same. :) Hope this isn't TMI, but what bra are you wearing with that gorgeous romper? I got those sticky boobs you mentioned a few posts back and it has changed my life!!! Thank you!!! I hope your birthday was just every bit as special as you are! ~Stephanie

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    1. Hey Stephanie, thanks so much for commenting and for your kind words! I'm wearing the sticky bra in these photos however I don't have it hooked in the middle (otherwise it would show). But it works just fine that way too! :)

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  53. I love your blog and your fashion sense. Happy Birthday

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  54. Happy birthday!! I enjoyed this Q&A, and am definitely going to look into that Tamron lens (not sure if it's compatible with Canon though) because I've been considering something besides my kit lens to supplement my 50mm, so thank you! :)

    Lauren | boston belle

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  55. Your the most down to earth blogger keep being your self .

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  56. Happy birthday!! Hope it's been the best one yet! Also, loved hearing more about what makes you, you!

    -Morgan
    How 2 Wear It [] http://how2wearit.com

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  57. Happy Birthday!! Loved this Q&A and learning more about you! Also, these photos are sooo cute!
    xoxo
    Amy | Pastel N Pink

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  58. such a lovely post :) Happy Birthday :)

    x Lilli
    please check out my fashionblog if you want: www.LilliFerreira.com

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  59. Happy Birthday! Gorgeous photos! Thanks for all the helpful answers regarding blogging and loved getting to know more about you! Have a wonderful weekend! xoxo - Amy J.

    Bowlines and Lace

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  60. Happy Birthday! I love your blog and absolutely loved this post! You do an awesome job! :)

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  61. Happy Birthday beautiful!! I loved reading all your comments back to the questions...so fun to get a bigger behind the scenes look! I hope you have an absolutely wonderful day and weekend celebrating!! XO

    @stylemelauren
    http://www.stylemelauren.com

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  62. This was such an interesting post! You really do make it look effortless! So it's interesting to hear how much work you put into it. I started blogging back in 2008 and it is a very different world now. I love following your blog. I get such great style inspiration so I hope you keeping doing what your doing! Happy Birthday!

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  63. Happy Birthday girl, you look amazing! Thanks for keeping it real and always being yourself - hope your weekend away is amazing!

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  64. Happy Birthday! I hope you have a great one.

    http://www.amysfashionblog.com/blog-home/

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  65. Happy Birthday Caitlin!! Hope you have enjoyed your day. This was really great today. Learned more about you. But wow, who knew, there was so much involved in keeping a blog. And your favorite outfit post was how I started following you. Another blogger referred to your blog with that outfit. I loved it!!! You seem sweet, sincere, and certainly are creative. Many Blessings, Amanda

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  66. I started my blog a couple months after you and I remember following you from the beginning of my entry into blogging! You absolutely have to love blogging to keep it going and it is a totally different beast now! Happy Birthday and keep up all your hard work! We love it!

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  67. Happy Birthday! Such a fun post to read :)

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  68. Happy Birthday! I really enjoyed this post and your honesty about the pros and cons of blogging full time and the passion necessary to make it successful. Keep up the great work!

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  69. Happy Birthday! It's mine, too. Only I'm 10 years older. ���� I've been a longtime follower of your blog. I absolutely love the Q & A as it helps us get to know you better. Thanks for the years of helping me have better style. As you get older, it gets harder to stay trendy. Best wishes to you for a happy and prosperous year.

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  70. I think it is important shall know better bloggers and these responses tell a little 'about you ...Have a nice day, kisses from Italy,
    Eni

    Eniwhere Fashion
    Eniwhere Fashion Facebook

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  71. Sending bday wishes. Please check out my latest lookbook.

    Kisses xo | From Aliona With Love

    Instagram @alionawithlove

    Twitter @alionawithlove

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  72. Such a great post! I never write comments on blogs, but your answer about "the day being made by reading comments or mails" encouraged me to leave something nice here, since I really love reading your blog everyday, and it was really nice to learn more about you as a person through this Q&A. Lots of love from Switzerland

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  73. Happy birthday! Thank you for sharing your story! You are a true inspiration! I just started my blog www.stylesrevealed.com a month ago and couldn't agree with you how hard it is, but so rewarding to be able to share my passion for fashion! Xoxo, Susan

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  74. Happy 26th Birthday!!! This is fabulous!! I absolutely love Q&A post!!! I am a brand new blogger and I had no idea how much work goes into blogging!! But I love it!!!
    Xo | Chelsea Olivia
    www.lowecopetite.com

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  75. Happy Birthday !!! I love the Q&A post ! Your honest and beautiful and a wonderful blogger :)

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  76. Happy Birthday and what a wonderful post!! I follow a lot of fashion bloggers on Instagram and have definitely seen them copy your outfits a few days later. I always thought it was just the brand sending the same clothes to people!

    You do such a wonderful job with all of this, I wish you didn't have anxiety about it. You are the best in class!

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  77. Happy Birthday!! WHat an amazing and interesting article, it shows how much effort you've put into it!
    Fash 'n' fudge
    Fash 'n' fudge

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  78. Happy Birthday, Caitlin!! Thanks for sharing your heart with us! <3

    xo Katie
    www.allglammedupstyle.com

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  79. Happy 26th Birthday! Love your blog and everything about this post!
    http://fabuloustorture.blogspot.com

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  80. Happy birthday! I discovered you recently (I also read Lily Kate at Jolihouse.) but I'm a big fan. Your style is classic and fun and Southern. You seem genuine and sweet. Thanks for being SO open with your readers! You inspire me to define and work on my own style :)

    I also think you have the best taste in swimsuits. I have 9 (so I'm a bit of a bikini hoarder lol.)

    Congrats on one year older and wiser! (My name is Kaitlin also).

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  81. Happy happy birthday! I love your blog! It's always on my todo list everyday! :)

    Shesallnaturale.blogspot.com

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  82. Such a great post! I can relay to a lot of things you mentioned like the hard work behind the blog and the stress etc. But I mean you are doing an amazing job! I've been following you for a while now. Love love love everything you posted and your photos! Your mama does a great job too! Hopefully can meet you in person one day, I def would love to chat with you:P

    Shall We Sasa

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  83. Happy Birthday!! Hope you had a great day. Just wondering if you're Chanel earrings are new or if you've had them a while? I saw someone else wearing them recently & I looked in Saks & NM but couldn't find them. Would love to have the style #.

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  84. Happy birthday!! Such a cute post! I really enjoy your blog. You do a great job at letting your personality come through and staying true to yourself! All the best! πŸŽ‚πŸ™ŒπŸ»
    Liya
    www.sensingserendipity.com

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  85. Happy Birthday! Thank you for sharing about your relationship with Jesus. It was an encouragement to me. I will be praying that God will continue to bless you and bring you His perfect peace and joy in your everyday lifeπŸ™

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  86. May God almighty continue to bless & may you see many more. Happy Birthday!

    Natalie P.

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  87. May God almighty continue to bless & may you see many more. Happy Birthday!

    Natalie P.

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  88. Loved getting to know you a bit more and happy (belated) birthday Caitlin!

    xoxo,
    Katie
    chicincarolina.blogspot.com

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  89. Happiest of birthdays!! :D

    B
    www.thehunnyb.com

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  90. Hi Caitlin! I hope you had the best day! We've emailed before and i'll never forget how prompt and friendly you were - hoping to meet you in person down south one day (from the Carolinas myself!). Keep it up sweet girl! xo Miranda

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  91. Happy birthday! Loved this post :)

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  92. I loved reading this Q&A! Happy Birthday to one of my favorite bloggers!
    -www.mrschachachic.blogspot.com

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  93. Happy Belated birthday! This post is awesome, I always love a good Q&A! It's nice to hear your transparency about the struggles of blogging. Love following you xox

    Tess | Sequins are the New Black

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  94. Hi Caitlin! I loved reading this post! You are definitely one of my favorite fashion bloggers!! I admire how healthy and gorgeous your hair is and you mentioned that part of that is washing it only once or twice a week... When I don't wash my hair in the morning I feel like it is too greasy to look cute! How do you style it on days that you don't wash it? I feel like I just have to throw mine in a ponytail! Also, would you recommend slowly transitioning into washing your hair less often in order to get your hair used to being washed less often and keeping it from getting really greasy?

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  95. I loved this Q&A post from a sister in Christ! And do go to Santorini! Instagram didn't exist when I went, ha! It's SO beautiful there. You'd so enjoy it. I LOVED how open and honest you were with all of these questions. I love that you were open to the fact that you didn't make any money for several years. That's true passion and hustling knowing that your work will eventually pay off.

    I have noticed that you don't have a lot of sponsored posts. I think that also helps to keep things and life real in the sense that you're not shilling a fabulous life, but that you work for it. Another reason why I'll continue to follow and support you!

    I hope to see more posts like this soon! I feel like I already know you! xo

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  96. This is probably my favorite post of yours thus far. I really enjoyed getting to hear your look on blogging as well as getting to know you a little better! Hope you had a wonderful birthday :)

    xx Kathryn
    www.chicandshimmer.com

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  97. Happy birthday!! Thanks for sharing :)

    http://thegirlswhobrunch.com

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  98. Happy birthday! I really enjoyed reading this post. I've been following your blog since I started mine last July (I think I followed you on Tumblr forever ago though). Though Zoella was my inspiration to start one, you are actually a huge inspirationg and this post made me realize it. I live right outside Charlotte and I guess it's easy to feel that you have to live somewhere more glamorous to accomplish things. You make me see that it's not impossible in this area and your work ethic inspires me to work harder at my blog! So thank you. Have a great day!
    absolutelyariana.com

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  99. One of my favorite posts so far! Thank you so much for sharing with us!

    xoxo
    Sharan
    www.MyGoldenBeauty.com

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  100. I absolutely loved reading this! And I had no idea you use to live in Greenville! I'm in Greenville and love it here. Thank you for sharing!!

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  101. Happy Birthday! I loved reading a little bit about your life - Sounds lovely!

    xo www.stylefile.in

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  102. A very happy birthday to you Caitlin! This is hands down one of the best posts ever! I have been following you for the past three years and I just love your work!
    http://www.docdivatraveller.com/

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  103. You're such an inspiration! I've just started a blog but I'm really struggling to find my niche in the ocean of other bloggers. Im really interested to know what you think of Youtube and how its affecting the fashion blogging world?

    Emma | Fashion Photography and Model | emmanmh.com

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