One year ago, today, we officially announced our entry in the blogging world; nothing could have prepared us for where this journey would take us. As friends, the blog has brought us even closer – allowing us to appreciate the skills the other brings to the table and providing support to each other in busy times – and taught us the true meaning of compromising (because believe it – we have had MANY disagreements).
In the past year we have shared many of the “ups” we have experienced on our blogging journey so far, things like:
- Our trips to local destinations across our beautiful country – places like Cape Town, The KZN Midlands, Plett and St Franics Bay;
- Overseas holidays to places like Portugal, Sydney and Melbourne;
- Our very special Spruce Girls trip to Paris (see here and here) and Madrid;
- A feature from a leading lifestyle blog 🙂
- Eaten at some beautiful locations like here, here and here
We have also shared with you a ‘view’ into our lives in the past year, including:
- Fabulous, fun and fancy events – from black tie parties and champagne festivals to relaxed country outings and curated local fairs;
- A peep into our entertaining styles from dinner parties and book club nights to table inspirations
- Sharing our style secrets (see here, here, here and here) and that of other’s;
- Our opinions on Hollywood’s best dressed at Award shows like the Emmy’s, Golden Globes and the Oscars;
- Beauty indulgences in the form of massages, facials and perfume discoveries.
Having entered this blogging world (and all the related social media elements of it), we have come to understand that what you share to the outside world is only a fraction of what happens in real life, and how much goes ‘unseen’ in creating the content for Spruce. Every post that is uploaded onto our blog has been agonized over – from the photos to the writing and the editing to the pictures captured for Instagram and Twitter – every small detail is checked and re-checked before we press publish and share our thoughts.
We thought it would be fitting to share some ‘behind the scenes’ photos from our year.
In celebration of our one year anniversary of Spruce Lifestyle (besides the little trip up memory lane), we have decided to share our personal take on the past year:
- What has been the most challenging aspect of the past year?
Sam: Photos! I have been accused of being on my phone too much but I am notoriously bad with taking photos when I am out (despite “trying to be” a blogger for a year now). And even when I do pics, they are not the best. Still working on this…
Ilaria: I think, for me, one of the most challenging aspects from the year is time management. It most certainly is one of my development areas and I have had to learn (and still learning) to distinguish ‘Spruce’ time from work and everyday life. As mentioned earlier, a post is by no means a quick put together – it takes time, research, editing and respect. We both have a sense of ‘perfectionism’ and we try to give every single post the respect it deserves.
- Which is your favoruite blog post from the past year?
Sam: There are quite a few but selfishly, it would be the post Ilaria wrote on my birthday. Mainly because she snuck it past me (still wondering how) and because it caused me to tear up – despite being scattered across Europe on that day, the effort she went to in doing the piece made my day very special.
Ilaria: This is a difficult one – each post is so different and carries along with it a personality of its own. For me, I think there are two: our Valentine’s Day look book post – I love creating a visual out of nothing, and this post was one of the first times we showcased our own style combinations. The second has to be Sam’s recent post on turning 30 – I have known Sam for a very long time, and to see your best friend growing into herself and accepting herself the way she portrayed in this post was amazing. It was honest, true, and emotional and it made me proud of the woman she is.
- What have you learnt about each other that you did not know?
Sam: Despite knowing Ilaria for such a long time, it is the sense of dedication she has thrown behind the blog that has surprised me. She is our ‘Operational Director’ and really oversees SO much of the behind the scenes work that I still don’t even have a clue how to do!
Ilaria: Three things:
- If you know Sam, one of her famous lines is “I am soooo uncreative, I couldn’t be more right-brained!” This year has proved the complete opposite – she comes up with such clever and creative ideas which have so positively influenced the direction of the blog!
- Also, this chick can whip up a post write-up in a matter of a few minutes – it is insane, and it surprises me every time.
- More-so than ever before, this journey has taught me that Sam sticks to her gut, knows her value and has the ability to bounce back from anything no-matter what.
- Where do you see Spruce in the next year?
Sam: There are so many things about this blog that I love and don’t want to change – for me, the only goal is about expanding our reach of readers and really understanding what people want to read about.
Ilaria: Spruce has led us into an industry which is completely unpredictable and incredibly exciting, and I would like to see Spruce having created a dent in this blogging world by this time next year. I am so proud of what Spruce has reached thus far; I can only hope that we can continue to grow our readership and follower base in this coming year and continue to provide good and interesting content that keeps bringing people back to our site.
We would love to know from you – what do you most enjoy reading about on Spruce, what is that brings you to the blog and continues to bring you here? Chat to us in the comments in section, or pop us a mail on firstname.lastname@example.org.
We look forward to bringing you more on our take of life, style and lifestyle in the coming year. If you still have not subscribed to receive updates from the blog directly to your mailbox – look right and enter your email address so you don’t miss any of our posts.
So, with our thanks for all your support over the past year, we say: onwards and upwards we go!