Hey ho, folks! Welcome to my guide for frugal bloggers, who want to spend their £££ in all the right places. I am definitely still in a situation where I can’t afford to lavishly spend my dough (that #grad life) so I totally get ya. These are some ways that I’ve saved money during my almost two whole years of blogging – gawd, that’s flown by – and some things I think it’s essential to spend on. Hopefully I’m covering everything in this post, but if not – don’t be afraid to pop me over a tweet >>> here <<< or search me @thekittyluxe.
NOTE – I’m not covering photography or photography tips – that post is coming soon so please don’t ask me about that quite yet!
Missy Empire Gilly Red Knitted Cropped Jumper*
Missy Empire Briona Denim Straight Leg Distressed Jeans*
Public Desire Raya Pointed Toe Ankle Boots*
Missguided Oversized Tortoiseshell Sunglasses
H&M Gold Anchor Necklace
Primark Cream Circle Cross Body Bag
I’m going to be straight with you, I coded my first layout in html myself (free) and then splashed £50 on a blog layout from Pipdig – I’m not really sure where else you can get one from, but the £50 was 100% worth the splurge. Just do it at your own pace, when you really do have the money for it.
Same goes for buying a domain, I used www.thekittyluxe.blogspot.co.uk for ageeeeees until I bit the bullet and bought the domain. My big tip would be to choose a rare blog name. The best way I can explain this is that the words “the” & “kitty” & “luxe” rarely ever make an appearance in the same sentence and on their own, they make very little sense. Know what this means? My domain is super cheap – under £20.
Behind-the-scenes action here but I was going to be called “The Pretty Luxe” but guess what? The domain cost £100 per year and that made it completely unattainable imo. It just isn’t worth spending that much on a domain, when there are so many blogging names out there to be created (and not put you out of pocket).
Having a domain and “professional” layout isn’t the be-all-or-end-all when you first start blogging, but if you really are 100% set on it – perhaps asking your family/friends for help on your b’day or Christmas would work for you? If you do decide to take the plunge on your own, it’s definitely an investment into your own little blogging world.
In terms of building SEO… yep, I think all bloggers should be thinking about it as soon as they have they purchase and implement their own custom domains. It’s a tricky thing SEO, but I would suggest learning about keywords, the do’s and don’ts of follow/no follow links, and creating backlinks. I wouldn’t ever pay for backlinks on someone else’s blog, ever. But, doing collabs, guest posts, and blog-swaps is a great way of networking whilst developing good SEO for your blog.
MAKE CONTENT FROM THE THINGS YOU ALREADY OWN
If you’re a beauty blogger, I 100% promise that you do not need to keep buying new products just for the sake of featuring them on your blog. Obviously if you do fancy a splurge, do it, treat yourself – and create content from the products. However, you can totally create content from what you already own, and I did this for my whole first year of blogging when I was living off a student loan and had barely any disposable income. Have a peek at this post for my 75 Blog Post Ideas.
SAVE MONEY ON BLOG PROPS
Despite what your blogger senses are telling you, you do not need to splash out on Jo Malone or Diptique candles for some lust-worthy luxe photo feels. Honestly I’ve been this >>> <<<< close to splashing on big high end products just to put them in blog photos, and I always think to myself – but will I ever burn this £50 candle? Hell no, it will live on as an ancient relic in my collection of “bought for the ‘gram” products that just don’t get any use in the real world.
That’s oddly specific of me, but you get the gist. There are so many products that already exist in your home that you don’t need to spend a penny on. Oh, and even if you do – you can grab them on the cheap at Primark, B&M Bargains, Home Sense, Dunelm, and more.
Here’s a list of blog props that I use all the time, that you could potentially find around your house:
– a textured rug
– a textured cushion
– a candle
– a collection of books
– old fashion magazines
– interesting plates/trays
– real/faux plants
– a shell/decorative piece
– posters or prints in frames
– watches and other pieces of jewellery like rings, earrings…
– storage baskets
– blankets (for texture)
– patterned/textured pieces of clothing
(I’ve literally walked around my room and made note of all the things I use in blogging/IG shots)
BUY THE ESSENTIALS
I do not in any way mean buying a camera, or any photo editing software – if you’re a broke blogger living life frugally – you do not need them to create content. Okay now that I’ve made that point, let’s move on to some real essentials for the budgeting blogger.
These are things that I really do feel like (if you don’t have them) you should invest in them. By all means, shop cheap. I buy everything under £20 and I just can’t afford to be lavish, so here are my essentials (with bracketed suggested stores):
– A fluffy rug/blanket (Ikea)
– A statement cushion or two (H&M / Matalan)
– A mug with detail or slogan (New Look)
– A palm or other leaf-y indoors plant (Ikea)
– A nice plain-ish tray that will work in many shots (H&M / Home Bargains)
– A candle in the colour of your “feed” or colour scheme (TK Maxx / Homesense)
– A tripod (Amazon)
MAKE SMALL INVESTMENTS
I’m a massive fan of Aldi/Lidl, and what I have noticed is that not only is the food cheap, but so are the flowers. I always grab a fresh bouquet on my weekly shop, and it only sets me back £2/£3 a week, meaning I can add life, colour, and texture to my photos all week without ripping a massive hole in my pocket.
If you want to go even cheaper, buy faux flowers! You can grab okay-ish looking ones from places like Home Bargains, but I highly recommend Peony Faux Flowers for a realistic set of fleurs. These are more pricey (looking at £10+) but if you by a set, and use them all the time, and then break them down on price per use – it’s a really good deal. I literally started using one of the smaller, cheaper faux fleurs in all of my photos and everyone was going mad for it.
Other small investments include cute cushions (try Matalan for the fluffy ones and H&M for aztec patterns) and theme-fitting bedding. What I’m trying to say is, if you have a pastel, holo, unicorn IG aesthetic, then go all out and get bedding covered in pastel patterns etc – meaning your bed flatlays will effortlessly fit in with your “feed” or whatever. I have these grid ones that I bought months & months ago from La Redoute and they suit all of my shots.
Basically what I’m saying is buy small, and collect more blog props over time. You really don’t need to splash out!
Here’s my post about all you need to know about the cheapest (and best) blog props on the market.
By far, the majority of my income now goes into the fashion/style side of blogging as I haven’t been able to invest much in seasonal trends in the past. When I was first starting out I really did learn to buy intelligently. Yes, I still bought “fast fashion” but I bought clothes in colours I knew I would wear, shapes that suited my curvy/petite-ness, and items that I knew could 100% be worked with other items in my wardrobe.
For example, I’m concentrating on buying this seasons key colours – red and mustard – and key patterns, obvz tartan because winter is coming. Hence, red and mustard accents can we reworked throughout AW17 and still be in trend, and tartan comes back every year which makes pieces even more of an investment.
In terms of shoes, I hate to be the mum of the blogging world but BUY SENSIBLE PEOPLE! Honestly, buy shoes you’ll actually wear and not just pose in a photo wearing. On the other hand, buy in style and make sure they’re something you can both wear comfortably everyday and get good use out of in style shots.
Oh, and anything you buy can be popped right into a flatlay or lifestyle shot – Ta dah!
What are your favourite ways to save money as a blogger?
Want to support my blog?
I’m up for TWO blogging awards this year:
BEST IN BEAUTY – #biawards: http://bit.ly/2vLJB9E
BEST PHOTOGRAHY – #bloggersblogawards: http://bit.ly/2vLEjem
*I was gifted products in this post, however all thoughts and opinions are my own*