By Caitlin Kelly
I recently culled my list of blog subscriptions — from a fairly crazy 87 — to a still-unmanageable 46.
I enjoy blogs’ wide variety of voices and experiences. Many of my faves are written by women, some living overseas or in places I fantasize about — like the mountains of Colorado.
Now I’m looking for a few new ones to explore — so please give me some of your recommendations?
Some of the blogs I now read are purely or mostly visual — about art, interiors, design or photography — a refreshing break from words and also creatively inspiring. (I’m not as interested in traditional girly stuff like fashion , food, make-up, beauty or parenting as I am in design, ideas, history, urban life, labor, education, writing, work and relationships.)
The blogs named below are also visually appealing: they’ve chosen an attractive theme, use lots of photos and most of them consistently include useful links, all elements I really appreciate as a reader and have tried to do here for you as well.
They’re clearly written for an audience, and I’m glad they’re there.
Here are a few of my favorites:
This daily blog, written by Portland florist-turned-stylist Chelsea Fuss, is a charmer. She recently posted from her travels to Chile. The photos are lovely and she often includes multiple links to food, clothing, stationery and other items.
It sounds odd to find and hire someone without ever meeting them, but Cadence Woodland, who writes this witty, worldly blog, became my assistant in January 2013 after I read her blog, loved it and knew she would be a terrific fit. She was then living in Utah and has since moved to London, so her recent posts are full of the joy and fear of looking for work and new friends in a new city. She manages to be both Mormon and feminist, an intriguing combination.
As a fellow Francophile Canadian living in the tri-state area (NY, NJ, CT), I really appreciate the spirit behind this lovely and informative blog, written by Patricia Gilbert, who teaches high school French. Every day, she highlights a French word, idiom or aspect of French culture, whether a current show in Paris or a singer or a painter. I have learned beaucoup from her blog. Like me, she also hopes to retire to France.
Another daily blog, written by another Patricia. I so enjoy her choices — every possible use of glass: in architecture, furniture, crafts.
She’s currently in Patagonia, but usually lives in the mountains of Colorado. Her photos of the landscape there, often taken on horseback, are elemental, stark and beautiful.
As someone obsessed with design — interior and exterior — I love this popular, super-fun and helpful blog. It’s exhaustive in its coverage, but whatever you’re looking for is likely in there somewhere. Despite the name, it’s not only about apartments, but addresses every issue of domestic life, and is also international. I like its focus on smaller, lower-budget homes, not blingy mega-mansions. It includes many photo renovation stories as well.
The name alone! Writer Nigel Featherstone lives in a small cottage, with his chickens, in rural Australia. His work has a dreamy quality I always appreciate.
High school teacher Paul Barnwell lives in Kentucky, where he writes thoughtfully about a wide range of educational issues.
Another athletic/feminist Caitlin! I really enjoy her take on women, our bodies, exercise, sports, fitness and body image.
I’ve been reading her blog for a few years, even though it’s largely aimed at fiction writers and those who will likely self-publish. Kristen — who lives in Texas — is a pistol! She’s funny, blunt, personal and calls it as it is. I starred commenting fairly consistently on her posts, and one day (!) this fall my phone rang — and there she was! She invited me, on the basis of my own work and credentials, to teach a non-fiction class at her recent on-line conference, WANACON. I really enjoyed it, got good reviews and may do it again. Her blog, which has a stunning 29,000 followers, is helpful, smart and full of good cheer.
What are some of your favorite blogs?
What do you most enjoy about them?