25th Birthday + Changes
Photos by Sarah Kelly Photography
Wednesday August 3rd marks my 25th birthday. I'm not sure where I thought I'd be at 25th, but I'm pretty happy with where I'm at. Last August, my 24th birthday, to be exact, was when I launched my new website and re-brand of Southern Elle Style (see post here). The more things change, the more they stay the same, because here I am, back at Arlington Hall at Lee Park, for another b-day shoot. You can say I'm a creature of habit. But, even creatures of habit have to change.
If you are a newer follower, then let me get you up to speed. I started Southern Elle Style, to compliment my custom bow tie business, in November 2014. I quickly realized that my passion and prosperity was not in my bow tie business, but in my blog. I began my first blog, the summer before my junior year, at Baylor University. It was lifestyle blog, but a rough one at that. I created it, because I had things I wanted to say. (That one quickly died after I graduated, but fostered the initial thoughts for Southern Elle Style) Fast-forward 5-6 years later, and I still have a lot to say and I'd like to think that a lot of people still want to hear it. Last summer I re-branded my website to focus solely on my blog and it has grown exponentially since then. This summer I made my last bow tie and called it quits for good. Life is too short to continue working on things that don't make you happy and like the Starbucks smell grows faint to the baristas, the hand sewing and cutting just wasn't my adventure anymore. With every closing door, another door opens...or maybe the same one opens a little more? That's what I think, at least! By "quitting" my bow ties, a weight was lifted off of my shoulders and I was given more time to pour into my blog.
Continuing with the change streak...Southern Elle Style is very much a part of me, but a part of who I was pre-Nick. It was based on a name my friend Warren came up with for my bow tie business...a play on Southern Belle and the fact that my friends call me Elle or Elle-Spann. My website wouldn't be what it is today, if I didn't have my IT Support (aka Nick) and I can't deny that. So yes, while Southern Elle Style is still very me, I've changed since then (gasp!) and so has my blog's direction. I think I'll always root my blog in fashion...it's what I started with, it's what I studied, and definitely one of my loves; however, I'm definitely being pulled into a lifestyle shift. That being said, I will be doing another re-brand after Nick and I get married, this fall. Kind of scary in a sense of SEO and social accounts, but I'm really excited too. My hope is that I won't have to re-brand again - I only see "face lifts" in my future.
One of my initial mistakes in blogging is that I wasn't focused. (You can see my top 4 blogging mistakes here and my top 16 blogging do's and don'ts here) Another is that my blog wasn't clear. Was it Southern Elle? Shop Southern Elle? Oh, it's Southern Elle Style? And who is Lauren Spann? Is she Elle Spann, too? Lots of questions. To confuse you even more, once I get married I'll be Lauren Mulenos. What? So much confusion! (Side note, I'm actually keeping all my names/ have 2 middle names, so I'll be Lauren Elizabeth Spann Mulenos) I'll be like "Hi I'm Lauren Mulenos, aka Elle Spann." So anyway, I thought I'd share with Y'ALL FIRST, a little look into my new site. I didn't want to completely lose my name/theme, so my new blog name will be Element of Fashion. "LM" being my new initials", lments of style, being a play off of Strunk and White's book, all while paying homage to what got me here. Like it? I hope so! I have nothing done yet, just LMentsofStyle.com purchased, so I still have a long way...just excited to share.
Anyway, 24 was pretty good to me. Nick and I got engaged, I moved into a bigger apartment, I entered my 3rd season with the Cowboys, and I recently got a kitten. Looking for another good one, 25. I hope you'll join me on my adventure!