Welcome to JforJen.com – my new online home!
There have been some big changes around here and I’m so excited to share everything with you. A Little Bird Told Me is no longer (sob!), but I hope you’ll love the new blog even more.
I started thinking about making some changes to the blog around this time last year. I was in such a rut – I felt totally uninspired and thoroughly boring. I actually came quite close to packing it all in and deleting 5 years of content… but then I realised, it wasn’t the actual act of blogging that I’d fallen out of love with. I still enjoyed sharing my outfits and writing about my life, but I wasn’t happy with my surroundings.
I started A Little Bird Told Me in 2009. I was 23, I worked at an advertising agency in Sheffield and lived in a teeny flat with Rob. In 2014 I’m 28, married, run my own business and live in a lovely house (still with Rob, FYI). Priorities have changed – I buy more homeware than clothing these days and I’m starting to actually enjoy cooking. Five years is a long time when you’re in your twenties – I’m a totally different person now to what I was then.
But although I’ve changed and grown as a person, my blog had stayed pretty much the same. I was still on Blogger and still struggling with the limitations of the platform. I’d had a few minor redesigns over the years, but nothing that really refreshed the look and feel of the site. And although my content had developed – my photography was a million times better than when I started, and I was writing about home, food and travel rather than just posing in front of a camera – it still felt very entry-level. In short, my blog was a basic bitch. Realising that was a breath of fresh air, and it started the ball rolling. With the idea of a huge overhaul in my mind, I set about making things happen.
After many years of faffing about with two identities and two URLS – the blog and my freelance business – my first decision was to bring everything under one roof. I wanted a single place that represented my freelance work and sold my services, but also allowed me to blog in a more professional, ‘grown-up’ way. After a little bit of brainstorming, I came up with a name… although originally it was J is for Jen until I wrote that out as a URL and realised it spelt something rather rude. It’s still my Snapchat name though, just for the lols.
I worked with Leeds-based designers Passport to create the branding – I wanted something very clean, modern and fresh without being too ‘hipster advertising agency’. I think we achieved that beautifully!
With the branding in place, I contacted Kim and we started chatting about the technical side of stuff. As soon as I knew I wanted to merge my existing blog and business sites into one new, super site, I thought of Kim. I met her at Blognix last year and I’ve watched her create some amazing new homes for Wish Wish Wish and Essie Button, so there was no one else on my list. Kim made the whole process so easy – at one point I described it as ‘designing my actual thoughts’. As things rumbled on, we worked out the little niggles and refined the features until we were left with a site that I truly adore.
And here we are! A Little Bird Told Me is now J for Jen – all the old posts are here along with all 26,000 of your comments and many, many photos of my face. Things work pretty much as they always did – you can use the search bar or the categories to navigate around, and there’s no truncated feed to deal with. If you click ‘HOME’ in the top nav, you’ll find yourself amid my professional business website, but that’s ok! The blog sits within the BLOG section (obviously) but the rest of the site is dedicated to my business. Feel free to nosy around!
I’ll still be posting outfit photos and fashion-y stuff, but there’ll be more travel adventures and a bigger focus on home. I’m also going to try more food posts – I’m not a very skilled cook and have zero patience, which isn’t the best combination in the kitchen but we’ll give it a go. I also want to do more writing about being in your late 20s/early 30s – getting married and all the stress a wedding brings, attempting to buy a house, the constant ‘when are you having children’ question – all that good stuff. If there’s anything you’d love to see on J for Jen, let me know in the comments!
I’m so excited to share the new site with you all and hope you love it as much as I do. I know some of you have been here since my very first post in 2009, and for that I can’t thank you enough. I’m so grateful to everyone who reads, comments, tweets and likes, whether you’re an old-timer or brand new. Thank you all for being here through the most exciting part of my life.
Here’s to the next chapter!