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And the Liebster Award Goes To…

This week I got my first Liebster Award! Even though there is no actual trophy involved, the Liebster Award is becoming popular in the blogging community as a way to introduce, support and promote smaller (under 200 followers) blogs by fellow bloggers. It’s a great way to be discovered and connect with other bloggers you may not have heard of before.

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I got nominated by a fellow blogger, Subhadrika Sen of the Trekkers of the East blog. Subhadrika and I collaborated recently serving as guest bloggers for each other’s sites – check out her great post on India’s off-beat holiday destinations.

So, before I pass on the honor of nominating few other bloggers, let me answer Subhadrika’s questions:

 

1. Please introduce yourself and your blog

Hi, I am Lana, the woman behind The Stylish Voyager blog. The blog concept is made of two words that reflect my two biggest passions – travel and fashion. Being a multi-ethnic person with some Central Asian nomad blood, I seem to move to a new country every few years. Something pulls me to explore more, connect with strangers and learn about their cultures.

Also, since I was a little girl growing up in the Soviet Union, I have been obsessed with fashion, memorizing the names of all major fashion houses and trying Mom’s clothes and shoes that were way too big for me! I have grown up since them, tried my hand at modeling and developed my own sense of style, which is all about mixing different high street brands to suit my personality. Following my philosophy that ‘style cannot be bought’ and being frugal, I believe dressing well doesn’t have to cost lots of money.

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A fashionista, voyager, geek, wife, foodie, PhD graduate, cat lover, and part-time wonder woman, I document my discoveries on The Stylish Voyager as I explore the world each day.

2. Describe how did you first get into blogging?

I actually started my blog under a different name (Nomadstan.com – ‘the place of nomads’) when I moved to London in 2010 for my PhD studies. Being back in the city I love and that feels like the center of cosmopolitan culture gave me so much inspiration and freedom to explore different things. As someone who always has some tips to share – be it on dressing well without breaking the bank,  fixing quick and healthy meal, recommending places to see, or succeeding in academia – I thought blogging is a great platform to share these tips with wider audiences, and not just my friends. This blog is my space to be creative and share part of my experiences in life.

3. Who/What has impacted you most in blogging and how?

Probably some of the most earlier and now famous bloggers, like Chiara Ferragni (The Blonde Salad) and Olivia Palermo (Olivia Palermo) who became household names through their fashion blogs, which are now huge lifestyle websites managed by teams of people. These days I am inspired by smaller but well-known blogs (see below) and women behind them who have created a lifestyle they want and get to do what they love.

4. Do you have any favorite bloggers?

Yes, I do! There are quite few fashion bloggers I follow and get my inspiration from: Sincerely Jules (my style crush!), Atlantic-Pacific, Hello Fashion Blog, The Frugality, The LondonerPink Peonies, Something Navy and Gal Meets Glam. Jessica Stein’s of Tuula Vintage is probably one of the best examples of fashion intersecting with travel! While Sazan Hendrix (and her husband) is my favorite Youtube blogger as she is very down to earth and super funny!

As for travel bloggers, I love Savi and Vid’s Bruised Passports. I came across them by chance while trying to find out more information on glass igloos resort in Finland and came across their Youtube video. It was so fun and well done that I felt like I was there with them. Now I follow their adventures around the world as they quit their jobs and became full-time bloggers!

5. How would you rate your blog out of ten?

Probably a seven or an eight! The reason for this mark is that I did blogging on and off for 6 years but only have been doing it more diligently and professionally in the last year or so. There is definitely room for improvement and growth.

I think when people think of blogging, they probably imagine that it’s all easy and fun. But many don’t realize it’s a lot of hard work behind each post – from writing the text and editing photos to technical issues, such as fixing glitches with the website or scheduling/promoting your content on different social media platforms, which is a science on its own. It’s a constant work in progress, which can be both exciting and challenging at times.

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6. If there was one thing you would want to change about your blog, what would it be?

I am quite happy with the quality of the blog as I continuously get positive feedback from friends who are reading it regularly. However, in this age of heavy reliance on social media I know I could be doing more promoting my blog and growing my readership.

7. What are your future plans with your blog?

Like every serious blogger, I am planning to grow my new site and try to capitalize on the power of social media even more. The dream is to become a full-time blogger so I can dedicate more time to sharing my experiences with my readers and exploring new things and places around the globe.

8. Tell us about your best and worst blogging experience till date?

The best experience would probably be the positive feedback I get from friends and colleagues who read The Stylish Voyager on a regular basis. For example, a co-worker of mine used my blog post on Split to plan her trip there and found my tips and recommendations on what to see and where to eat really useful.

The worst blogging experience is rebuilding my site and moving it after 6 years on Blogger platform to WordPress. So I had to quickly learn how to do self-hosting, build a website from scratch, migrate content and make it SEO-friendly, add various plug-ins and link new website to the social media channels. I feel in some ways it set me back a bit in terms of traffic since I lost some of the previous readers, but I believe the move will pay off later.

9. Which Social Networking Platforms are you active on?

Check them out as I have much more photos, tips and updates on these platforms.

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10. If not blogging, what can we find you doing most of the time?

Sleeping, shopping or exploring new places. I work quite hard during the week so catching up on sleep during the weekends is a must! It’s my opportunity to rest and recharge the batteries after a busy week. I also love shopping, especially scouting latest fashion trends at bargain prices, and making travel plans both in the UK and abroad. I already have few trips lined up through June of next year, so expect fun and informative posts on my latest travel adventures.

So, with that I would like to pass the baton to few fellow bloggers I enjoy following:

  1. Tanned Beauty Addict
  2. The Twisted Red Ladybug
  3. Accidental Hipster Mum
  4. Travel Me Sri Lanka
  5. Sherina Shamdasani
  6. Oryx and Life
  7. Creativity with Kay
  8. Dan.K

The rules of the award are fun and easy:

  • Someone nominates you for the Liebster Award and you chose to accept it or not
  • If you accept it, write a post about it including:
    • Thanking and writing a bit about the blogger who nominated you and provide a link to their blog
    • Posting Liebster Award badge on your site (Hooray!)
    • Answering questions the person who nominated you has asked
  • Chose other 5-10 award-worthy bloggers, with less than 200 followers, you want to nominate
  • Pick 10 questions for them to answer (can be about their blog or about themselves)
  • Let them know you have nominated them for the Liebster Award and ask to answer the questions

Questions I would like to ask them are:

  1. Tell about yourself/your blog
  2. What is your most favorite destination (why)?
  3. When did you start blogging and how did you choose the topic/focus of your blog?
  4. Give one top tip to other bloggers or someone who is considering blogging?
  5. What is the best and most rewarding part about blogging?
  6. What is the least rewarding part about blogging?
  7. Are there any tips you would share with fellow bloggers on growing your exposure/presence?
  8. What post on your blog you are particularly proud of (why)?
  9. What is your favorite social media platform (why)?
  10. Who are your favorite bloggers (why)?

Look forward hearing from my nominees and reading their answers. Have a great weekend!

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