Two Years.



It's not often I sit in front of the computer with absolutely nothing to say, but there aren't enough words in the English language to express how much this little corner of the internet has changed my life. It has given me so much direction, and finally made me realise what I want in life.

It might not be the biggest blog in the history of time, but I'm so happy with the progress my little blog has made over the two years. It has brought me so much joy, opportunities and even brought me some of the loveliest friends.

When I sat down to write my very first blog post, who would've guessed that 2 years and 352 blog posts later, I'd still be doing the same thing. Now for someone that can't stick to anything for toffee, this is pretty good going.




FEBRUARY 2014: MY VERY FIRST BLOG POST



My very first blog post on the blog then named Kimamely.com was a review of the Benefit Porefessional Primer. Actually that's a lie. Technically I started my blog in the summer of 2013, with three very cringey diary style posts about the boy I fancied at the time. It's safe to say they were swiftly deleted, and for all intensive purposes, the Benefit post was my first, mmkay? I have no idea exactly why I decided to come back to the blog, but I sure as hell didn't regret it!


APRIL: JOINING TWITTER



Before Twitter, pretty much no-one read my posts, and if they did, god knows how they found my tiny blog. I remember Kirstie (name twin!) was one of the first bloggers I followed on Twitter, and A Yellow Brick Blog is still one of my favourites today. I honestly can't imagine a life without Twitter now, it has become such an obsession, and scheduling tweets has made the biggest difference to my daily stats.


NOVEMBER: BEATING GOALS, ADVERTISING & ONLINE FRIENDS



Having Iswai retweet one of my posts was amazing. I think it was one of the first times I'd had a post retweeted, and seeing my views surpass the 200 mark in a day for the first time was an amazing feeling.

In November I started to offer advertising to both bloggers and brands, and that was a really big thing to me back then. As a new blogger, it was an amazing way to connect with small brands and other bloggers, and it lead to some of my first brand collaborations.

I've mentioned her a million and one times on this blog, but "meeting" Aria was such an amazing thing. She was my first proper online friend, and we chat almost every day. We've swapped beauty boxes, she's helped me through some life dramas, and if I need a second opinion on something blog wise, I can always count on her to be 100% truthful. She blogs at All Souled Out, and also showcases her beautiful photography on her Instagram.


DECEMBER: GETTING NOTICED BY BRANDS



In December, I was so happy to receive my first PR samples. It was amazing to get the confirmation from a brand that I was doing a good enough job. I learnt from this first experience not to accept just any samples. One of these first opportunities was a product that really wasn't something I believed in, or a good fit for my blog. I learnt from this pretty quickly, and since then I've learnt that it's okay to say no if something just isn't for you.

I also recieved my first event invitation from one of my favourite brands, La Roche Posay. The event was an evening affair in London, so sadly I wasn't able to attend. Unfortunately I haven't had an invitation from a brand like this since, so I definitely regret not taking up the opportunity for the sake of not wanting to travel on my own. Saying that, I am still an absolute wimp and am yet to go to a London event. I do have two exciting opportunities planned for this month, so that's something on my blogging bucket list that I'm excited to tick off.




FEBRUARY: ONE YEAR.



My one year blogiversary came around, and I hosted a giveaway for the first time. I had a bit of a freak-out at the fact I had compers entering for a freebie and it really upset me tbh. However I have since embraced the compers, and after a positive experience with them with the next giveaway I did, I wrote a post about how they didn't deserve all the bad press.



MARCH: BUYING A DOMAIN



In March kimamely.blogspot.co.uk officially became kimamelybeauty.com. It was a move I only wish I'd made earlier, although obviously we all know the name didn't stick around for long. I'd tried to install a domain previously with GoDaddy and couldn't figure it out at all, so this felt like such a big hurdle. Thankfully the next time around, I found the process really simple, another thing that proves blogging is such a huge learning curve.


APRIL: "COMING OUT", FACEBOOK & BLOGGER LOVE



Other than my online friends, I'd pretty much kept my blog a secret. I still find it quite an awkward thing to tell someone (i.e. a friend) "I have a blog". Part of this was being scared that muggles non-bloggers wouldn't understand how much work goes into having a blog and judge it for being rubbish. It is only now that I think my blog is at an acceptable standard that people won't judge me too harshly. One by one, my friends started to find out, and it's nice to be able to share such a huge part of my life with them.

Although there were lots of groups for bloggers, I always felt uncomfortable asking questions as a new blogger, as I found the answers really patronising. I decided to set up the now-defunct Newbie Bloggers Forum, a group on Facebook for newer bloggers. In hindsight, not the best thing as it pretty much single-handedly catalysed a war between two bloggers notorious for aalll the drama (no prizes for guessing who). However, it did create a space to share ideas and new blogger struggles, and I made some lovely blogger friends as a result, including Fiona from Wishes, Hopes & Dreams, and AJ from Love and Other Awesome Stuff.

Making more friends online made me realise just how supportive the blogging world was. This was cemented when around April time, I got a job offer and I was so so nervous about the first day. When I tweeted about it, I had so many sweet messages wishing me luck. One blogger that really went above and beyond was Caz from Style Lingua, and she has continued to be one of the most lovely and supportive bloggers I know.


JULY: MEETING LEICESTER BLOGGERS



Before July, I had no idea there was such a network of bloggers in the area. I had seen a couple of people floating around social media before, but nothing like other cities. I joined the Leicestershire Bloggers Facebook group and we arranged to all go for a meal at Crafty Burger. It was such a great evening, and amazing to meet so many like-minded people.

What was even better was that a couple of weeks later, I got an invite to an event at the Leicester branch of Lush, which you can read about here. It was so great to finally attend a brand event, as well as get to know the other girls better.

AUGUST: UPGRADING MY TECHNOLOGY



I spent the majority of the first year and a half blogging solely from my iPhone. Coming out of the stone age really improved my blog, and made the blogging process so much smoother. When I got a job in the summer, I was so happy to finally be able to buy a camera. I decided on the Olympus PEN E-PL7, and although I'm still constantly frustrated with my images, it has improved my photography no end. I feel like having the right equipment has allowed me to flourish, and I only wonder where I would be if I had the right kit from the start. That's not to say that you can't blog with just your mobile phone, but it got extremely frustrating at times.




JANUARY: REBRANDING, RESTAURANT LAUNCHES & RESIGNATION



And so, we fast forward to January. I had planned to launch my new-look blog on January 1st. I felt like I was constantly messing around with the look of my blog, and for the first time, I finally feel happy in both the aesthetic and the branding. Kimamely Beauty went down the drain, and became Behind The Scent. It's just the best thing in the world to have a blog name that rolls off the tongue without having to spell it out! You can read about the rebrand here.

2016 started with a bang in terms of events, and I was super excited to be invited to my first restaurant launch (which you can read about here). I was invited by Gabby from Cool As Leicester to the opening of The Kitchen, a new addition to veteren High Street comedy venue, The Cookie. It was a great experience, and food blogging is definitely something I'd like to do in the future.

Another thing I posted about recently, is that fact that I walked away from a job that wasn't making me happy. At the moment, I am blogging full-time, although know I am in no way worthy of having the "full-time blogger" title. Who knows what the future might bring, and what I'll be saying when I sit down to write Three Years. this time next year...



I just want to say thank you all for you continual support, and I appreciate each and every one of you that follows, reads and comments on this blog.

Love,

FOLLOW BEHIND THE SCENT


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Hi, I'm Kirstie and I'm the girl with an addiction to perfume

Hi, I'm Kirstie and I'm the girl with an addiction to perfume
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