1. ‘How did you come up with the name ‘Cider with Rosie’ for your blog?’
Cider with Rosie is actually a novel, written by an author called Laurie Lee! It’s very quaint and nostalgic, and is set in a traditional English village. The quaint Englishness of Cider with Rosie (the novel!) struck a chord with me, and so that’s what I decided to call my blog! Also, the title has my name in it, so, you know…
2. ‘What camera do you use?’
I use a Canon 600d, with a 50mm 1.8 lens. The camera body came with an 18-55mm lens, but I very rarely use that lens since I’m never happy with the quality of photographs it produces. The Canon 50mm 1.8 lens cost me about £90 (and now is even cheaper!), and is the best money I’ve spent in the past year! I’d recommend it to anyone. Any photos not shot with my proper camera are taken on my iPhone, and are usually edited with the VSCO app. Photos that appear on my blog are edited with Photoshop, which I use to resize the images and sometimes adjust the light.
3. ‘Who designed your blog, and how much did it cost?’
My blog was designed by Flourish, a branding agency that my fiancé Jason owns and runs. They did a full redesign and rebranding of Cider with Rosie during summer 2012, and I’m still absolutely head over heels in love with my design! They currently do offer a premium blog design and branding service, though please bear in mind that the service is priced in line with agency fees. For anyone looking for small-scale Blogger blog templates or redesigns, I personally really like the simplicity of Blog Milk designs and would suggest having a look through their portfolio.
4. ‘Do you accept samples/complimentary items for review, and do you ever have sponsored content on this site?’
I do accept samples from PR agencies and companies, though will only ever accept an item if I’m certain the product is something I will actually like/wear/make use of. I wouldn’t ever accept an item simply because it was free, and frequently (on an almost daily basis) politely decline items that I feel are not a good fit for either me or my blog. Items that have been sent to me for consideration are always marked ‘℅ : ‘courtesy of’. If you’d like to get in touch with me about sending me through a product or item of clothing to consider, please do drop me a line at ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’.
Occasionally, I share content here that has been sponsored by, or created in collaboration with a certain brand or company. These posts are an exciting way for me to collaborate with brands, and bring fresh content to this blog! I am very, very selective about the sponsored material that appears here, and go by a rule of thumb that if the post doesn’t seem like something I would read myself, it won’t be being published here any time soon.
Some of the links on Cider with Rosie are affiliate links, which allows me to make a small amount of money on items purchased via links on this site.
5. ‘Could I interview you for my final year university project?’
I’m afraid that due to the sheer volume of requests that come in, I will no longer be able to take part in interviews for university/academic projects.
6. ‘What do you do for work?’
Writing, photography, freelance copywriting, consultancy work- all sorts of creative things!
7. ‘Do you have any tips for starting a lifestyle blog, or for switching my beauty blog over to a lifestyle blog?’
I don’t think there’s a right way or a wrong way to write a lifestyle blog (though it gets debated at great length on Twitter!) and so find it hard to say ‘Here are my tips for how you should do it!’ I personally like to focus on the positives, and try to use Cider with Rosie as a place to catalogue the simple things that make my life joyful. Other bloggers I know prefer to make their blog more rounded, sharing losses as well as triumphs, sadness as well as happiness. My only real advice would be to write content that you yourself would read, and try not to compare your blog to anyone else’s. Whilst I believe it’s good to identify the aspects you love most about your favourite blogs and try to use that to inspire your own creativity, it’s best not to get into the habit of outright comparing your blog to anyone else’s. It can be so disheartening!
8. ‘Where do you and Jason live?’
We live in Surrey, which is the county just south of London :) We love it here!
9. ‘What breed of dog is Teddy? Would you recommend getting a spaniel?’
He’s a working cocker spaniel, and is a ball of energy! I adore spaniels, but like any breed, they do have specific traits and needs that have to be taken into consideration. Spaniels are intelligent dogs, so need a lot of mental stimulation as well as long daily walks. Teddy has always been ridiculously quick to learn, which means he picks as bad habits as well as good behaviour with equal speed- something we had to learn pretty quickly, too! They’re also sponges for mud and filth, which means that baths and hosings-down are frequent and necessary, especially in the winter months! I’ve learnt to accept that life with a dog is a muddy one, regardless of how frequently I try and clean up ;)
I always reply to any direct questions left in the comments of posts, so be sure to check back for a response if you’ve asked a question! :)