So what’s the VLB? Well it’s basically a monthly mail out from me with ideas on how to spend the next month. I’m hoping each issue inspires you to do something fun! There are heaps of craft tutorials from around the web included for you to try out, fun videos, the downloadable tutorials, interesting new blogs to follow, coupon codes for the Bergamot store etc.
If you’re already subscribed, I would love to know what else you would like to see in the VLB so just leave me a comment!
I’m currently planning out the kind of things to include this coming year which is really fun. I think I really enjoy the planning stages of things rather than the doing part hahaha!
Anyway hope you are all having a lovely week!
So it’s been a really, really, really long time since I did a round up of the site updates I do behind the scenes but I finally have a minute to sit down and breath so I wanted to put one together!
- Changed theme and recoded the entire thing.
- Remade responsive design to work on tablet and mobile devices.
- Removed left side bar
- Made top navigation sticky.
- Removed a bunch of right sidebar widgets
- Removed social media buttons. Will be looking to reintegrate them once I find a design which isn’t a drain on resources.
- Deleted a whole heap of pages which weren’t needed anymore.
- Updated About, FAQ, The VLB, Categories, Shop, Hire, Contact, Editorial Policies.
- Tutorial page totally reworked.
The layout of the tutorial pages had been a problem for quite some time. There is still a lot of work in sorting which needs to be done but this is a decent start. Please let me know if you have any suggestions or if there’s a particular way you want to be able to organise things?
- Menu structure updated
- Category pages actually work now, yay!
- Archive pages work
- Fixed the page numbers for easy browsing
- Added better support for bloglovin.
- Changed the email subscriptions from Feedburner to Mail Chimp
This was another decision that took some thought, Feedburner has been rumoured to be ending soon and I didn’t want to wait until the last minute to switch. I really prefer the look of the Mail Chimp emails too. To import the current subscriptions I had to remove everyone who hadn’t completely the double opt in. If you have stopped receiving emails please just sign up again in the sidebar!
- Installed Disqus.
There was a lot of debate over whether I should do this on Facebook/via email. People have very strong feelings about Disqus and so I didn’t really want to install it. The problem I had was server load, there are over 20,000 comments on my site and calling them from the WordPress database is VERY labour intensive from the point of view of the server and I can’t afford to bump up my plan which is already quite pricey. So the choice was getting to be Disqus vs no comments rather than Disqus vs regular comments. Hopefully this will work for the moment until we can find a better solution later.
- Removed Glam ads because they were a nuisance for people and their ad system kept applying features that I had specifically asked to not be a part of.
- Added PassionFruit ad serving system so I can manage things myself. Still finalising the sizing.
- Signed as a blogger to The Remarkables Group for sponsored content.
- Added BlogHer advertising system for a trial period. Please let me know your experiences and thoughts on this in the comments!
Still to do:
- Confirm mobile sites work on all devices
- Fix sidebars on mobile devices
- Make series of posts
- Make sure each post has the correct thumbnail, particularly in the tutorial section
- Add extra navigation to find tutorials eg. crochet, sewing, knitting, etc
- Add social media buttons back in.
- Remove gallery links, still considering this as I’m not happy with the gallery in it’s current form.
- Change theme and update Bergamot Bunny site
- Change theme and update Violet’s Cuties/tumblr site
- Consolidate all of the FAQ’s I’ve done and add resources page
As always, let me know what you think! If you ever find anything which isn’t working, please let me know about it! This site has grown so big that I can’t keep track of everything all at once so I rely a bit on people telling me if something is not working correctly!
I’m planning some changes to the way that I make videos and blog this coming year as well. It seems a nice sense of symmetry to just finish off the year and start fresh with the different things I want to do in the new year. I’ll post properly about that all in January then!
So basically… good things to come ^_^
Thank you all for sticking with me so far, I’m looking forward to seeing what comes next!
Morning! I hope you had an awesome weekend ^_^
As you guys know, I have recently joined a new agency and they were hoping to get some information about you guys to make sure the campaigns they pitch to me are actually relevant and interesting to you all. It’s been forever since I did a proper reader survey so I figured why not!
The survey should take around 10 minutes to complete and as a thank you, they will be sending a $150 Westfield Voucher to a random reader who submits (make sure you put in a valid email if you want to be in the running for it).
Unfortunately this time they can only send the voucher to Australian addresses (feel free to fill it out anyway!) but I’m working on a big competition which will be open internationally soon!
You can fill it out below or click here.
Thanks so much for taking the time to help and good luck!
It’s been quite a while since I updated my FAQ and while I was taking care of some maintenance I figured it would be a good idea to post it up here as well because I know a lot of people don’t make it to that page. If you have any questions leave them in the comments and I’ll add them here too!
Where do you live?
How old are you?
I was born in 1987.
Are you Hime Gyaru? Are you Lolita?
No. I no longer wear Lolita fashion. I do not consider myself to be exclusively Hime Gyaru either even though I love the style. I like a lot of styles (including 1920’s, 1940’s, Rococo and many many others) and I take bits and pieces from each to create a look that is my own. I enjoy specific fashions but I also enjoy having the freedom to wear what I feel like when I feel like it without conforming to arbitrary rules.
Can you make me a set of nails/deco something/draw me an avatar/whatever for *insert special reason here* I can’t pay you for your time or materials but could you do it anyway for free?
No. I occasionally take paid commissions but I don’t generally have time for things like that sorry!
Why don’t you sell your crafts?
Mostly because that would take the fun out of making them. Also the pay is terrible :P I have a short crafting attention span and so making the same thing over and over again sounds stressful. Honestly I’d rather just show you guys how to make things yourself :) That said, if you want to support the site I sell Bergamot shirts in my Zazzle store here!
Why do you wear these clothes and do your hair like this?
The same reason you wear your clothes and do your hair like that: I like it :)
How do you do your hair?
Currently I have blonde to pink gradient because I like it :) Here’s a video on how I dye it. I touch it up once every few weeks and bleach once a month. Here is a post on my hair history. Please see this post for a complete hair FAQ.
What brand of dye do you use?
Do you get it done at a salon?
No. I cut and colour my own hair due to financial constraints.
Why do you have such dark circles under your eyes?
They are hereditary and I quite like them. No they won’t go away with more sleep or water. They are a physical shape on my face and the colour of my skin.
Generally at local junk/$2 stores, sometimes actual craft stores. I like to buy fabric from the stores on Sydney Rd in Brunswick as the prices are really reasonable.
Nail bases and supplies-
Ebay or in bulk from China. I don’t use a particular seller I just search “false nails” and see what looks good at the time. People restock and run out of them all the time so just have a look.
I buy at local shops, thrift stores, online and make a lot of my things. It can be hard to find things I like or that fit locally but the more you hunt the more likely you are to find something! My favourite local stores are Femme Connection/7Angels and Valley Girl. Online I usually just buy from import stores on ebay or Taobao
He is my extremely awesome boyfriend. We have been together since 2007. He’s a professional photographer and he’s pretty awesome. We are the same age but met while I was working at the reception of the college he was attending. It’s a much longer story than that though and maybe one day I’ll write it all down!
Who is Lottie? What kind of dog is she? Why is she so big?
She is my best friend, also known as my puppy. You can read a full post about how she came into our lives here and watch the videos. She is a Pomeranian. She was the biggest in her litter and honestly she’s not actually that big in real life. People ask about this a lot for some reason. Both James and I are quite small and I take photos of her from low angles so she ends up looking huge.
What camera do you use?
Currently I am using a Panasonic GF6. Previously I used the GF3. I also sometimes use James’ Canon 5D Mark 3 but it’s so heavy that I avoid it if at all possible so that’s mostly for filming.
Can I use your photos/artwork/text on my website?
Not generally but I do make exceptions. If you want to use my photos please email for written permission first.
Can you make a tutorial on *BLANK*?
I am happy to take suggestions for tutorials to make! I love to help with stuff like this! You can email me any suggestions you have. Please be aware that my time is limited so I can’t do every request and as I already have a long list it can take me quite a while to finish things. If you have a time sensitive request (eg. Can you show me how to make a head piece to match my dress for prom in 2 days) I probably won’t be able to help sorry.
Why does it take you so long to reply to comments and why don’t you reply to Youtube comments anymore?
Generally it’s because I’m spending most of my time making new content for you guys to read. I haven’t been as organised as I would like to be lately but I hope to change that soon and be able to reply to your awesome comments on a weekly basis. I’m not able to reply on every form of social media because I don’t have time to check them all regularly. I reply to blog, Instagram and Facebook comments so if you need to get a hold of me, that’s the best way to do it!
Why don’t you vlog every day all the time?
Honestly, my life just isn’t that interesting! Mostly though its because sometimes I don’t have time to edit vlogs every day. I really wish I did because I love making them but there are some days that I just don’t have time :(
Why does anyone read this crap? You’re ugly/your hair sucks etc…
Your guess is as good as mine.
While I’m happy to accept constructive criticism and you are more than welcome to have that opinion please remember that the little “X” in the corner of your browser is there for a reason, if you don’t like my site or find it in some way offensive then perhaps you should use it :)
I want to learn about Hime Gyaru…
I am in no way an expert on Hime Gyaru fashion and it only wear it sometimes these days. Due to receiving a lot of questions on the subject I did a quick FAQ on the subject here. That post is extremely old and I have no plans to update it any time soon but hopefully that will give you a place to start.
I want to learn about false nails and nail art…
I am in no way an expert on nail art but I do have a passion for it. Due to receiving a lot of questions on the subject I did an FAQ here. It’s a very old post and really needs an update but hopefully that will give you a place to start :)
Do you accept sponsored content?
Yes, on a discretionary basis to counter the number of hours I spend working on the site. I try to keep everything interesting and on topic. For the full version or more information about why I take sponsorships on this blog, please refer to this page.
As always thanks so much for reading my blog and if you have any other questions please let me know!
Just a little note to let you guys know what’s going on with my shop!
#1 Bergamot bunny merchandise is available again through my Zazzle store. Take a look, there are shirts and other apparel with all of Bergamot’s friends as well as my monogram and the VLB logo!
You can even customize you shirt by adding your name or a message! How cute is this??
#2 My first series of paintings is now available for order in my Zazzle store as prints!
Get in quickly as I will be rotating designs in and out to keep things fresh! The next series of prints will be up the first of next month.
#3 to address the Bergamot conundrum…
As I mentioned in vlogs and on the blog several times getting plush Bergamots made has been really difficult and I just don’t have the money to do a bulk order as companies require. So as this issue isn’t going to be resolved any time soon I’ve decided to put a very special downloadable pattern up for sale. This is going to be very different to my normal tutorials and be more of a master class on how to completely make Bergamot and several accessories. I’m finalising the details on the layout for this and the aim is it will be up at the end of next month. It’s progress at least!!
#4 thank you for all of your support so far!
It makes me so happy to know that I’ve got such wonderful people behind me when put these things together!
So I’ve been on a bit of an unplanned extended break. It was due to a combination of unexpected real life events, which meant I just couldn’t keep up with things online :(
But new year, new start and even though I don’t generally do resolutions I’ve been working really hard in the first two weeks of this year to make sure I have a whole lot of fun tutorials built up so that if something like this happens again it won’t matter so much. I think if I work extra hard now I’ll be able to have a bit more control over my life which would be awesome!
The schedule I’m working to this year is going to be a little different too, I’m still working to get videos filmed and edited but my aim is to have a weekly plan of:
Monday: Blog post tutorial
Tuesday: Video quick tip
Wednesday: Blog post tutorial
Thursday: Video tutorial
Friday: Blog post tutorial
Saturday: Blog post snapshots
Sunday: Run down of the week’s vlogs
The blog posts are starting again on this schedule starting today and my aim is to build up some videos to start posting them by the beginning of February.
So that’s about it, just wanted to say thank you so much for an amazing 2013, 2014 is going to totally kick it’s butt with awesomeness!!