Cassiefairy – My Thrifty Life

Cassiefairy's thrifty lifestyle blog – Saving money every day with DIY crafts, sewing projets, low-cost recipes & shppping tips


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I’m a finalist for the Best Homes & Interiors Blogger Award

It’s been a really exciting weekend here at Cassiefairy HQ because I’ve been shortlisted for an award! I’ve been chosen along with 19 other fabulous interiors blogs (many of which I read myself!) to be put forward for the Tile Trader Best Homes and Interiors Blogger Award and I’d love it if you could vote for me to win!Local journalist Megan Goodwin got in touch for an interview on Friday and by the afternoon an article about the award nomination was already published on the East Anglian news website! The write-up was really kind and supportive, and thankfully they used a fairly nice photo of me – phew!And the following morning things got even more exciting when a friend texted to tell me that I should check out the local paper. It was so weird to see my picture published on page 10 but I was delighted that the East Anglian Daily Times are supporting me in the blogger awards and they even urged their readers to vote for my blog. Fingers crossed!I thought I’d share a quick post today so that you can see the article yourself and to ask you to vote for me in the blogger awards by following this link here. I’m in the list of finalists on the blog award page so it should only take 30 seconds of your time to give me a quick vote! So far I’ve got 20 votes so a big thank you to everyone who already voted. I’d really love to do well in this competition because the winning blogger gets the chance to donate £200 to a homelessness charity. This is a subject that has been close to my heart for many years and I really want to be able to help those fantastic services out there that support the homeless. Thank you all so much for helping me out in this competition – it means a great deal to me 🙂


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My experience of becoming a self-hosted blog

Today I wanted to share my blog post on making the switch from WordPress.com to .org which was first published on The Fairy Blogmother blog, where you can find jargon-free advice, user-friendly tutorials and support with any aspect of WordPress.

Earlier this year, I became a self-hosted blog. I’d been a lifelong WordPress.com user and had run a number of websites and blogs through the platform but a couple of issues a few months ago led me to consider taking the plunge and moving over to a self-hosted WordPress.org installation.

I did a lot of research into the differences between the two versions and it seemed like moving to WordPress.org was the best way for me to make progress in my blogging career. I wanted to share my experiences with you in case you too are considering making the switch because I learnt a lot during the process and there may be things affected that you haven’t yet considered – I certainly got a few surprises along the way!

What did I start off with?

Well, I’d been using WordPress.com for just under 3 years, as a blogging tool to promote my own fancy dress shop business. I liked how user-friendly the dashboard was compared to other sites I’d used in the past and I felt like a complete internet-whizz using this software because I could do a lot of my own editing, formatting and site-building without needing outside help. I saw my blog grow in readership over the years and when I finished my Masters degree I had more time to dedicate to writing, so I started blogging every day. This quickly increased my readership and Cassiefairy.com became a very busy place indeed.

cassiefairy in the newspaper national blog awards 2014

Fifteen minutes of fame in the local paper

I soon discovered that blogs could be monetized through affiliate links, banner ads and hosted content but at the time using WordPress for any kind of advertising was completely prohibited. When I purchased my own Cassiefairy.com domain through WordPress.com this allowed me to start earning from WordAds. These are already on every WordPress.com blog (unless you’ve paid for a no-ads upgrade) so I thought I might as well use the adverts to earn a little money for myself but I found that I only made a few pounds per month through using WordAds and still couldn’t become an affiliate and earn commission that way like other bloggers did. I lived in fear that my blog might be taken away from me at any time if I put a link (I’m talking about just a straightforward unpaid natural link) into my posts in case WordPress.com ‘thought’ I was making a profit from it.

I was turning stuff down…

I found that I was turning down offers from media agencies and brands because of the restrictions in the WordPress.com terms and conditions and I knew I needed to make a change so that I could keep the blog running as my full-time job.  Interestingly enough, it was a link on my blog that forced me to make the switch earlier this year. I posted a link within one of my blog posts and through a friend I found out that once my blog post has been published the link had become an affiliate link for the benefit for WordPress.com. I couldn’t believe it! I wasn’t making any money as an affiliate but WordPress.com had been redirecting my links so that they could earn from my audience! The only way to avoid this was by buying a no-ads upgrade.  I later found out that the T&Cs had changed since I first signed up over 3 years ago and affiliate links were now permitted, but I was so incensed that WordPress.com had been skimming my links for their own gain that I decided it was finally time to move.

Company magazine style blogger awards 2013 cassiefairy mybluerinse

Making best friends at the Company Style Blogger Awards in 2013

I decided to transfer over

I was a little grumpy that I needed to pay WordPress.com in order to move through a ‘Guided Transfer’, but that was simply because I am so un-techy that I knew I wouldn’t be able install WordPress.org at my chosen self-hosting server and I was terrified that I would lose 3 years-worth of content, all my settings and blog design. So I paid for the Guided Transfer service and it was quite straightforward – they told me when the transfer would start so that I didn’t use my blog while it was being moved, and they emailed me again once the transfer had been completed. The Guided Transfer team were available for me to email with any questions over the coming 2 weeks, but each time I asked for assistance or why something unusual had happened, they did get back to me but without a real answer nor did they provide any further technical help. Their replies were along the lines of ‘this is probably what it is…’, ‘here’s is a link to a help page…’, ‘it looks okay from my end…’, ‘you’ll need to do that yourself…’, ‘see how you get on…’, ‘refer that question to your host…’ etc. So I felt both supported by them being available to ask my questions to, but completely on my own in terms of fixing problems myself at the same time.

1000th blog post celebration cake for Cassiefairy

A massive cake to celebrate my 1000th blog post back in May

Once I started using WordPress.org I was really happy that I’d made the move. Everything was the same in terms of blogging and using the dashboard, and I found that installing Plugins wasn’t as difficult or scary as I’d imagined. The only worrying thing is that WordPress.org doesn’t back up your posts so it’s a good idea to do so yourself and I’ve been very vigilant with keeping copies of my work. Touch wood, nothing has gone wrong with my self-hosted installation so far and I’ve found out there are many benefits of being self-hosted (along with a few cons!) so here’s what’s been good and bad about the move in my experience:

  • Why I chose DreamHost I chose DreamHost due to their promise of 100% uptime yet I’ve already had a total of about 6 minutes downtime this year, but it always seems to be in the middle of the night and I really can’t complain about the service the rest of the time. They have a very helpful support team who always answer any of my questions within hours.
  • What’s happened to my readers I was told by WordPress.com that I wouldn’t lose my readership as a result of the transfer but I later discovered that around a third of my readers were finding my blog through tags in the WordPress.com ‘Reader’, and now that I’m self-hosted my tags are no longer included in the Reader app so I can’t be found by new readers through a keyword search. My blog is still listed on the Reader for my existing followers to read, but they can’t comment through the Reader app anymore so I’ve found that the number of comments I’m getting has gone down too.
  • I can host competitions I can now use Rafflecopter for my blog competitions whereas the widget couldn’t be implemented on WordPress.com. This makes it much easier for me to run giveaways and keep track of entries. I can now work with brands who want to offer prizes to my audience and I’ve found that running giveaways brings in more readers. My follower stats have greatly increased thanks to including more entry options through Rafflecopter such as ‘Follow @Cassiefairy  on Twitter’ or ‘Like Cassiefairy’s Facebook page’ for competitions.
  • I can use adverts I can put any number of banners or adverts in my sidebars or blog posts. This was prohibited through WordPress.com but now I am free to advertise in this way if I want to. At the moment, I’m resisting adding a lot of banner adverts and only have a couple of sponsors with whom I have a long-standing relationship, but it’s good to have the freedom to be able to do this.
  • My domain is free I don’t need to pay WordPress.com for my domain name and mapping every year because it is now hosted for free at DreamHost for the lifetime of my hosting plan, so as long as I keep paying for hosting, it will be free forever.
  • Freedom with other domains I can also point other domains that I own towards my blog, such as tuesdayshoesday.co.uk and piedayfriday.co.uk to tie in with my regular blog features.
  • Much more server storage I don’t have any storage limits for files, photos, videos etc. With WordPress.com I was approaching the maximum storage limit and would have needed to buy the extra storage upgrade. In the past I’d been limiting my photo uploads to two images per post in order to save space but now I can post as many photos or videos as I like without worrying about storage space.
  • Plenty of support When I need to make my own technical changes, there are plenty of support forums and DIY tutorials for WordPress.org and I can get extra help through DreamHost. Even so, I am still worried that one little change would bring my whole website down and I wouldn’t be able to get it back again!
  • Affiliates are welcome I am free to add affiliate links and work with any brands or marketing agencies, but at the moment I’m still only sharing links to products I actually like, things that I have bought myself and products that I am mentioning in my blog posts anyway rather than creating articles with the intention of ‘selling’ products through affiliate links.
  • Personalised emails I can have any number of personalised email addresses – mine is now cassie@cassiefairy.co.uk – through DreamHost.
  • Installing plugins I’ve been able to add an Instagram plugin so that I can add a widget on my sidebar for my photos, which looks great. I could never get an Instagram widget on my WordPress.com site.
  • Additional revenue I can install content feeds such as ContentClick and make a few pence per click referral – this can only be used through WordPress.org and not Wordpress.com. This was working well but I found that it interfered with ‘something’ on my blog and occasionally the site wouldn’t load at all due to an error with ContentClick so I have removed it until I have the time to investigate it properly and so far nothing has gone wrong since I uninstalled the plugin.

All in all, it’s been a positive move for me. I am pleased with the freedom that comes with being self-hosted now that I don’t need to adhere to WordPress.com’s strict terms and conditions but I still worry occasionally that I will ‘break’ my website and not know how to fix it! My apprehension is getting better over time, as each change I successfully make surprises me and is always easier than I’d imagined. I hope it will continue to be a good solution for my future blogging and that I’ll continue to find more and more reasons to be self-hosted.

 I still can’t believe that Cassiefairy.com has made it onto the Cosmo Blog Awards 2014 shortlist for Best Lifestyle Blog! It would mean the world to me if you would vote for my blog before voting closes on 29th August – thank you SO much!


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My fun weekend at Blogstock 2014

I’ve just got home from one of the best festivals I’ve ever been to. It wasn’t a big festival, it wasn’t rowdy and – most importantly – it wasn’t muddy! But it was just right for a happy bunch of bloggers who traipsed out to Elstree this weekend where Aldenham Country Park played host the the worlds first blogging festival: Blogstock 2014.

blockstock 2014_-8

I was thrilled when Hertz invited me to camp with them and I jumped at the chance to attend this inaugural blogging event. I packed up my floral bag, bought festival food essentials (read: one Pot Noodle) and jumped in the car. Last Friday afternoon I was stood in middle of the arena, taking it all in; there was the Expedia VIP area where phone chargers and free drinks were available all day long; a PopChip stand with double-sized deck chairs and massive crisp-packet beanbags to chill out on (and all you-can-eat Pop-Chips of course!), the Fashion Galleries where most of the talks that I attended took place, a cosy tipi for informal workshops, the debate tent for lively sessions, the Lonely Planet photobooth (our late night-photos have been censored haha!) and a huge marquee hosting travel and foodie talks all weekend (and the inevitable late-night parties!). Despite being one of the first arrivals to the festival (what can I say? I’m prompt!) I knew this was going to be a great experience and when the Contiki shuttle bus arrived with 100s of happy campers, I skipped over to say hi.

It was the perfect occasion to wear my VIP-esque ‘You can’t sit with us’ t-shirt from WearAll

Here are some snaps of my home for the weekend in the #CampwithHertz village – check out the hashtag on Twitter and Instagram for everyone’s fabulous photos of our cosy glamping experience! As you all know, I love fairy lights and bunting so a big smile spread across my face when I saw the bell tents popping up perfectly decorated in festival fashion. After one-too-many wash-outs, I’m not a keen camper but walking into my bell tent completely changed my opinion of the camping experience; I had a cosy bed, embroidered cushions, a lantern, snacks, rug and it DID NOT LEAK! Even with a thunderstorm threatening to dampen our spirits on the Friday night, we all stayed cosy and dry under canvas and even snuck over to the marquee for a dance in our wellies!

Some of the noteworthy workshops that I attended were the fashion blogging talks, where I learnt about pitching ideas for magazine articles from fabulous freelance writer and editor Alison Perry and brand collaborations (thanks to Emma Hart from Push PR for all her advice!), and I had my questions answered about the blogging things I’d always wondered about but never had anyone to ask! Thankfully the gorgeous Jen Riley from the famous A Beauty Junkie in London blog was on hand during the Mode Media session to help me out with my affiliate link questions. The session discussed many ways of monetizing blogs and I found it all really helpful (Thanks Louise!) – I’ve added lots of future research to my ‘to do’ list!

fun at Blogstock 2014-5

Saturday morning brought more sunshine and an early morning session with Pinterest UK gurus Lizzie and Zoe who gave us all a delicious cooked breakfast to munch on while talking us through a whole host of Pinterest features that I’d never even heard of before! As a crazy-pin-addict, I was sooo surprised that there was even more I could be doing on Pinterest… that’s my summer gone then! Shortly afterwards, I grabbed my second breakfast of the day at the Nuffnang #blogstockbrunch – yoghurt, bananas, croissants, fruit juice, muesli – and met the creative folk behind this generous spread Jesse and Jean-Luc from Nuffnang UK. I had to scuttle off to a finance session but soon headed back to chat with them and find out more about their blog advertising community – the work they do is so interesting and I’m hoping that they will be able to give me some help and advice on some of the more technical elements of my blog that I am scared to edit in case my whole site comes crashing down!

The highlight of the weekend for me was the old-fashioned pop-up village fête that Generator Hostels hosted. Belen had invited me along to the #GenLove Generator Fair by email earlier in the week, so I was already looking forward to it, but it was even bigger and better than expected;  including a big bouncy castle (how do children jump around for hours? I was practically dying after two minutes!), coconut shy, Polaroid fancy dress, ice cream and popcorn. We had great fun whizzing around the Hertz race track trying to beat each other in lap time-trials, but my dress slowed down my attempt while I tried to keep my modesty (same problem on the bouncy castle, eek!) so I was easily lapped by the other competitors!

One of the best sessions I attended was ‘Join the Vlogosphere’ with rock-star vlogger Ceara McEvoy. I’d already watched some of her videos in the past so I knew just how fantastic she is, and I’ve never ever tried vlogging before so I was intrigued. After passing around a tray of biscuits Ceara talked us through the best equipment to use, camera settings, editing software and showed us some of her hilarious clips. I was so pleased that I went to the session, and I am definitely going to have a go at vlogging in the future – especially if Ceara is willing to give me a hand with my ambition to make cookery videos – I’d be a fool not to do it!

Personally, my top experiences of the weekend were meeting loads of fabulous bloggers and included mixing Appleton Rum cocktails with superstar blogger ReeRee Rockette from Rockalily whose blog I’ve read ever since I started writing (and who kicked butt in the end of festival debate!) and the stunning Megan from The Briar Rose Blog, one the inspirational bloggers that I re-pin the most on Pinterest and a fellow shortlister at the 2014 Cosmopolitan Blog Awards! We were all tested to the limit in the pub quiz and had fun dancing the night away while playing keepy-uppy with an inflatable globe. There are too many new friends to list here but please go and check out the blogs of Toris Tales, Cherishing the Cherry BlossomsTodds Travels, A Lady in London, Backpacks and Bunkbeds, Tigerlilly Quinn, Eat Like a Girl, Macca Sherifi to name but a few! 🙂

I’ve come away from the weekend with tons of ideas for my blog, a notebook full of tips, a whole stack of business cards from the wonderful people I met and an insatiable yearning for a bell tent of my own. I can’t wait to get started improving my blog (apparently you can teach an old dog new tricks!) and I am already counting down the days to the next Blogstock festival!


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Building your own personal brand ~ brand purpose & the next step

I might be a little bit slow to catch on but I’ve just found out that most of the world has been calling Wednesdays ‘Hump Day’. I’ve heard it a few times and some of the US-based books I’ve been reading have been referring to hump day, but I’ve only just googled it and found out the meaning of this nickname. It’s always been a mystery to me as to why I have less oomph on a Wednesday and sometimes get into a big sulk because I don’t want to do any work – but now I know that everyone else is feeling the same and that that there’s even a ‘technical’ term for it, so it’s not just me, phew! In honour of hump day, I’ve procrastinated this morning and had a reading session rather than getting on with writing this blog post, but I’m here now and ready to roll. So welcome to another Hump Day and I hope you’re feeling as optimistic about getting over the ‘hump’ of Wednesday into the downhill slide towards the weekend as I am. It’s a particularly fun weekend coming up for me because it’s Valentine’s Day on Friday which will mean I get at least a few hours of my husband’s undivided attention. I also have a fun first-weekend-in-half-term planned which includes a car boot sale rummage, afternoon tea with my husband’s family and a naughty night out with my BFF and her boyfriend. After this little glimpse into the impending weekend I think I can cope with this hump day well.

Anyway, onto the topic in hand. A couple of weeks ago I told you all that I’d just finished my leisure-learning course on Secret Power of Brands – a degree-level course from the University of East Anglia. Although I enjoyed the course, it was very business-focussed throughout and I learnt a lot about the history and methods of branding. It wasn’t until the very last lesson that my imagination was sparked by the content – creating your own personal brand. Now this was relevant to me! And, I figured, was quite relevant to a few of you too. So I posted a little article about the course and was overwhelmed by the response from fellow bloggers, writers and pals who were making over their CVs and online profiles. I couldn’t leave it there and went on to share all of the questions needed to determine the three elements of building a personal brand:

Each of the segments above have a number of questions to answer in order to determine your answer to each section – click on the links above to complete the questions for yourself and you’ll find it easier to find out what your passions, skills and positions are. I am particularly lazy with doing self-help tasks like this and probably wouldn’t have actually completed these questions if I hadn’t been blogging about it, so if you really feel like you can’t be bothered, maybe write down your answers in a blog post and send me the link to share – at least you’ll feel like you’re doing something worthwhile with your time rather than just faffing around with branding jargon. The questions really did help me focus on myself and my abilities and has even led me in a slightly new direction in my work and I’m hoping to incorporate it into my blog as I go on – so I’d really recommend that you have a go at doing it! Once you have the answers to the questions you’ll have determined your brand purpose and can work on showing it off to the world. Here’s an example of what Richard Branson’s three segments would look like so that you can get an idea of how each section contributes to the overall brand purpose:

richard bransons personal brand purpose UEA

Sorry about the blurry image – it’s a slideshow from FutureLearn

My segments are: I am passionate about sustainable living and saving money through thrift and recycling/upcycling. I am good at communicating, research and sharing knowledge through writing. The world needs to know about the impact of making ethical decisions and the importance of creativity. My brand purpose is therefore: Create and communicate written content which encourages an economically and ecologically friendly lifestyle. So you can expect to see more of this on the blog soon! I know I already share bits here and there about recycling, thrift and charity in all areas of life but now that I have a brand purpose, it will influence most of my work and I will be more likely to create cohesive content – plus I’ll feel that my work is more worthwhile. Or at least I hope it will be!

At this stage the course sums up by suggesting looking at how you can implement your brand purpose in the future. For me, it’s as simple as making positive changes to the blog. But for people in other roles, who may be writing a CV or thinking about a change in career direction based on their brand purpose, it’s about making the positive changes happen. So here’s what to do next::

  • Appoint your own personal advisory board – choose six people who can help you achieve your ambition, ask each one if they will be on your informal ‘board’, usually they’re delighted to!
  • Ask for help with things you’re unsure of and see if one of your ‘board’ would become a mentor for you.
  • Publish yourself – get your ideas out into the world and your content will earn you respect
  • Coordinate your personal profiles online so that they all point towards a shared direction for your personal ‘brand’

I really hope that the sharing of my progress through the personal branding section of the course has helped you and if you’re interested in taking the course for yourself, the UEA are running it again as a completely free online course via Future Learn – it starts on 24th Feb and you can complete it at home and in your own time. I just want to point out that I’m not sharing a sponsored link or promoting the course or anything like that, I’m just sharing the info so that you guys don’t miss out if you fancy doing it for yourself! Let me know how you get on with implementing your own personal brand and drop me a line if you need a helping hand with anything – I’m always here to help! 🙂


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Building your own personal brand – What do you love?

During the week I wrote about the “Secret Power of Brands” course that I have just completed and how the last lesson on personal branding turned out to be the most valuable to me as a blogger. I’d never really considered myself a ‘brand’ before, but my blog certainly is projecting an image of me into the world and I’d like it to at least reflect who I am as a person! I think lots of other bloggers would find it useful to have a little think about the ideas that the course shares on personal branding so I wanted to go through the process with you and maybe you could join in too.

There are three parts to creating a brand purpose, which is something every ‘brand’ needs whether it is a company selling something or whether it is simply how you come across on a CV. These three sections identify what you’re passionate about, what you’re good at and what the world needs to know, and where they cross over in the centre is the brand purpose – easy, huh? Or maybe not. I’ve found it difficult to pinpoint something for each of these sections but luckily the course offered a list of questions to answer in order to figure out your answers for each section. Here is an example of which Richard Branson’s personal branding chart would look like (sorry for the slightly blurry image – it’s from a powerpoint slide):

richard bransons personal brand purpose UEA The questions that I’m aiming to answer today are those in the  “What are you passionate about?” section. I realised that, even though I share information on my blog everyday, all you lovely readers might not know that much about me as a person. I’ve not really shared much about my personal life, although if you read my posts you’ll probably gather that I’m married and my nephew is one of the most awesome little people I’ve ever met, but other than that, what do you really know about me? I’d be interested to hear what you think and it would be very useful for this task so please leave me a comment below. I am a very private person – odd for a blogger, I know – but I want to share more of myself, as I think my best writing comes when the topic is more personal. It’s just finding the balance I guess. Anyway, I’m taking a deep breath and answering the questions to identify “What are you passionate about?” below.

What gets you up in the morning? There are a few things and I’m not being cheeky when I say that my husband gets me up in the morning. Ok he literally does because I set an alarm to get him to work on time, but that’s not what I mean. He is one of the main reasons that I get up in the morning because we are working towards creating a better life together: a creative life where we are both doing things that we love. I get up in the morning in order to work on my writing, share blog posts and take part in creative projects and it keeps me busy (and happy) all day long.

What keeps you up at night? Definitely my blog and writing as a whole. As soon as I’m in bed the ideas for articles start to flow and I write out sentences (and sometimes whole articles) in my mind. It’s a shame that I can’t automatically record these bedtime thoughts with a brain print-out or something, because it would save me a lot of work the following day when I try to remember that amazing paragraph I subconsciously wrote the previous night. Worries about the cost of living in general keeps me up at night too and I think of ways of cutting costs rather than finding more money. Life shouldn’t be as expensive as it currently seems to be so I am believe in minimising costs, making your own, upcycling, making savings etc – anything to be thrifty so that more of my money stays in my pocket rather than sitting in the multi-million pound bank accounts of massive companies.

What are your core values and beliefs? I believe in love and family, the importance of friends and communication, not that I’m always that great at it. I refuse to plod through a prescribed life without imaging that it could be any different so I believe in creativity, happiness and education. And also being kind to animals.

What are you for and against? The world is too consumer-driven and I hate the idea of a throwaway society, so I’m for recycling, hand-me-downs and second-hand. It’s not as thought I’m never going to buy something new but why not shop in charity stores too? I am a massive believer in supporting charities which I why I blog about important causes and write for Oxfam. I agree with charitable giving in terms of time, experience, knowledge, items – not just money. I am against poverty, homelessness, loneliness.

What experiences in your life have been most fulfilling? Going to university as a ‘mature’ student, any kind of writing I’ve done, looking after and helping my friends and family when needed, teaching my nephew things.

What impact do you want to make in the world? To help people believe that their life can be different in any way that they want it to be: cheaper, happier, more creative, fun, fulfilled etc.

I hope you’ll have a go at answering these questions too and that they will help you find out where your passions lie. I have found out from my answers that I want to share happiness and knowledge through writing and perhaps live a thrifty life along the way – maybe that falls within the area of being self-sufficient, ecologically-sound living or recycling? Ooh I’m going to have to think about this a bit more before I can come up with a final definition for the “What do I love?” section. I will share the questions for the second – and little more tricky – segment “What are you good at?” soon and you can expect lots of flimsy, self-deprecating answers from me!


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The greatest (and craziest!) news…

I can’t believe it.

This blog, my little lifestyle blog, has been shortlisted for a Company Magazine blog award.

This kind of thing doesn’t happen to me!

I especially can’t believe it because all weekend I’ve been seeing loads of blog posts pop up on my Bloglovin’ feed from my lovely fellow bloggers, all declaring that they’ve been shortlisted for a Company Style Blogger Award. So I was delighted for them all, but I’d had no email from Company magazine, so I thought no more of it – I was just excited to be able to vote for my favourite blogs and keep my fingers crossed that they would do well.

So this morning I clicked onto the Company website and started casting my votes. Now, I don’t know about you, but I take my voting very seriously, and I have a good look at all of the nominated blogs before deciding on my favourites. So this morning I had been casting my votes for about 2 hours (and adding about 50 new blogs to my Bloglovin’ list!) when I reached the Best Thrifty Blog category. And there I was – Cassiefairy.com – right there, on the list. A shortlisted blog! To use the term gobsmacked would be an understatement!

Stylebloggerawards_shortlisted

How had this happened? Whaaaaaaat? Me? Nooo! I kept checking, and I read back through my emails (nope, no emails from Company) and I checked the shortlist again.  I stopped short of doing a cartoon ‘rubbing my eyes in disbelief’, but only just! And about an hour later I received an email from Sophie from Company magazine. Yes, my blog has been shortlisted for an award! Blimey! Crikey! And many more expletives!

So please please can you take a moment to vote for Cassiefairy.com in the Company Style Blogger Awards 2013 – I’m in the Best Thrifty Blog category along with lots of other fantastic bloggers from all around the UK.

I don’t think I could be more proud of all my fellow bloggers – see people DO read what we write (what a scary thought!) and good luck guys, I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed for you – and now for me too! 😉


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Today is an exciting day…

I am pleased to announce that my blog now has its own domain name! Yes, I must be a grown-up in the world of blogging now, because I have thrown off the shackles of the .wordpress.com domain (although, of course, my blog is still hosted  by WordPress, because its awesome) and I have shortened my blog address to www.Cassiefairy.com hurrah! The old cassiefairy.com will still get you to my blog homepage, but now I can share my cassiefairy.com domain name with anyone who’ll listen with ease!

It’s a big deal for me, because I’ve finally invested in my blog with actual money (yes, sadly it costs money to add a domain to WordPress blogs, otherwise I’d have done it a long time ago…), rather than just time (blood, sweat and tears aside) and it kind of tells me that I actually believe in my blog, in my readers and in continuing blogging for the forseeable future. Eek what have I done?! Well, I guess you guys are stuck with me now – let’s hope you’re as happy about that as I am!

Let’s celebrate with a few of my most popular posts from the past couple of years:

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