I am so excited today to introduce you Amy from The Charming! She is incredible. The photography on her blog is fantastic and she is such a positive and optimistic woman which flows throughout her blog. I had the opportunity to ask her some questions to get to know her better so that you all can as well. After reading through the interview questions and answers, I am positive you will fall in love with her just as much as I have! :) Be sure to stop by her blog and give her some warm wishes as she recently got married!! Now, what are you waiting for…let’s meet Amy!
I have a general lifestyle blog with focuses on art, inspiration, and wellness. My shop and photography business, Charming Life Studio, include paintings, photographic prints, graphic prints, and services like blog design. On Thursday, July 19, I will be having a link party entitled “I Believe.”
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
Hello! I am a nursing student in my last year (finally!). It’s incredibly challenging, but I love what I’m studying. I just got married to my best friend (doesn’t everyone say that?). We dated for 3.5 years. We have a dog and two cats and both have big dreams/goals for our future. On the side, I blog, do blog designs, and I am a photographer. But, when my husband is home we are usually playing with the animals, watching a movie, or talking about going outside (the 100-degree and humid temperatures convince us to remain inside and act like vampires – no, we don’t just glitter in the sun).
You just got married; any advice to brides to be?
Tons! We were the first to get married in our families and our circle, so it was a big learning experience. I go into detail on my July 11 post on my blog, but I’ll share something unique here: if you’re venue doesn’t provide one, hire a day-of coordinator. They are amazing and well worth the money (which was still a fraction of the cost of the photographer and caterer). Mine organized the timeline of the day, dealt with vendors, set up the decorations, and just did all the little details so my husband, our families, and I could actually enjoy the day! Without her, I would have had a lot more on my plate! Even just consider hiring a friend for a few Benjamins. We had a small wedding, so I had no friends to spare! I really was so not worried about the details of the day because I had her and I think my type-A personality was so thankful to have a weekend off. My mother’s type-A personality, on the other hand, didn’t take the weekend off – so maybe have a shot ready for family and friends who need them! The best man was in the bathroom for a half hour before the toast drinking and practicing because he was so nervous! Shh… don’t tell!
What is your favorite hobby and why?
I’m inclined to say “photography” because it definitely has encompassed a majority of my time since I first picked it up in 2007. I drag my big camera, lenses, and equipment whenever I travel (my motto is the same as the Boy Scouts) and I do a lot of side photography jobs, ranging from baby pictures to weddings. I love taking pictures of just about anything as well as editing them. It’s my creative side being put to good use and I love capturing moments, memories, and creating stories. I also love to read, watch movies, eat food, research topics (oh, yeah, did I mention I’m a bit of a dork?) and be outside.
How would you describe your shop The Charming Life Studio?
My shop is an extension of my business, Charming Life Studio. As mentioned, I love photography and it has been my job for about five years now. I offer a lot of my photographic prints, and hope to include more graphic prints, paintings, and other products in the future. For now, the main draw is the blog design services that I offer in the shop.
With someone looking to do some design work to their blog, what advice would you give them?
Strive for a cleaner look with clearly defined “sections” and declutter as much as possible. The main reason people come to me for blog designs is because they want a “cleaner” look and they think that my designs achieve that. Sometimes a design can be so overwhelming for it’s readers!
What is your series “I Believe” about?
The “I Believe” series was started with the idea for me to focus on the little things in my life that I love, things that help me to relax or bring myself back to reality, or just simple beliefs that have come to define myself in this world. As far as opening up as a link series, I’m hoping to learn more about other bloggers, make more connections with people, and see the fun, quirky side of the bloggers who participate. For some of my past “I Believe” posts, visit here.
Why did you decide to go with StoreEnvy over Etsy to open your shop?
I started with Etsy, but there were two reasons I switched: (a) the upfront fees and (b) the lack of individuality in my shop.
Etsy charges (yes, it maybe a minimal fee) a monthly fee for each listing. It adds up when you have a lot of stock and as a first time user I didn’t know what I was doing and got charged quite a bit of money I didn’t really have to waste before I even got started. Second, other than the header, everyone’s shopped looked the same. When I discovered StoreEnvy, I loved that they didn’t have upfront fees, the money is handled through PayPal, I actually haven’t even seen any deductions from my profits for their “cut,” and I can customize my shop’s appearance. It took awhile to figure out how to use the site, but it really is easy and offers a lot more options. Plus, I think it just looks more like my shop.
Isn’t she just fantastic!! Such great advice! Thank you Amy for giving me the opportunity to get to know you better!!