Friday, January 27, 2012

when one door closes...

I've both loved being a part of that role and been truly flattered that so many of you have enjoyed this blog.

And with that, I have come to a juncture where I must close one door to open another. This, I tell you with both a heavy heart and feelings of excitement for what is to come, is the last post you will you will come to see on Maritime Shopaholic. I started this blog almost 2 years ago expecting that only a few close friends might read about what I styles I was loving, what I was wearing and where I was doing in these outfits. Without much thought I choose an intended to be tongue-in-cheek title under which I would chronicle my own personal style, my fascination with the fashion industry (on both the small and large scale), as well as which shops and businesses I loved and wanted to support.

But as I mentioned in my previous post, 2011 was a busy year. With a little more life experience and another calendar year gone by, I've been pondering the best direction in which to take this blog. In order to make the most of time spent online and offline, I've decided to restructure my online presence. I'll still be supporting local fashion, designers and businesses through my involvement with Fashion Council Saint John, my role as blogger for the Brunswick Square fashion blog, as well as my personal tweets! I'll continue to blog about my personal style (outfits, favourite trends and producs, DIY projects) through Atlantic Style Diaries. I'll still be open to collaborating and working with brands and designers through that blog.

It was a tough decision to leave Maritime Shopaholic behind, but I will be spending more time with my loved ones, concentrating on my career, and taking a little extra time for me. Thank you for all the support over the last 2 years!

Monday, January 23, 2012

the online persona

This blog post is an opinion piece written by the author on the truth about marketing yourself as a brand.

This past year (2011) has been one of many experiences- all interesting, many amazing, and some eye opening. I've changed my mind about what I how I wanted to present Maritime Shopaholic a number of times in the past year and what my goals were in achieving through this blog. I've had many opportunities to get to know a lot of wonderful individuals and be involved in a number of fun projects. The truth is, the year 2011 was both great experiences and one of challenging times for me personally and as a blogger. Many of you have gotten a chance to know my Maritime Shopaholic persona who keeps up to date on what is happening in this city and where to find the latest sale or that perfect something for the season.

Virtual Reality

As almost an unconscious after-thought, the name Maritime Shopaholic became my online persona and then later, my brand. This is how many people in Saint John know me. Because I blog, tweet, and post on a variety of online social mediums on a focused topic, this is what people have come to know about me. In 2011, social media popularity seemed to explode, especially in Saint John. You seemed to know so much about a person before you finally met them in "real-life".

The Brand vs. The Person

Weird to think about, but many of us have since acknowledged this with a laugh, followed by a pondering question if we spend too much time on our computers and phones. Widening the dimensions in which you connect and communicate with people is kind of cool but also can have unforeseen impact on how people view you. It has given me the opportunity to meet a lot of interesting people, network without leaving my corner of the internet, and put my voice out there.

Most people knew me by Maritime Shopaholic before they knew my real name. But what I started to realize within my first year of blogging and then struggled with in my second year was that fine line of letting people know who you are, what you stand for, but maintaining some privacy and peace to retreat "offline" outside of the fashion and blogging community. You don't tell your life story or your every thought to someone you've just met or a room full of people you barely know- either in your real or virtual life, so naturally Maritime Shopaholic has always just been a piece of me instead of the whole pie. But that's the piece everyone knows and we all forget about the bigger picture sometimes.

Mistaken Identity

I started to realize a while ago that by creating and promoting a brand that was about only a part of me and my interests lead to people viewing me in a specific light- that was mostly flattering but not always the image I actually wanted to portray. But, from interactions with people time and time again, I realized that confusing Maritime Shopaholic, the brand, with Chelsea, the real person, seemed to be like when people thought the world was flat. And that's not their fault. They didn't know there was more land to discover and that Earth was actually spherical (and that their ships wouldn`t actually sail off the edge). When I started to get the impression that people thought I was actually a shopaholic (and it was published in newspaper print) I was started to feel like I needed to make a change.

Beyond the Surface

It's true, I love playing with outfits and jewellery. I may spend a good percentage of my extra money on my wardrobe. I enjoy a little retail therapy when I need a distraction and I define the seasons as much by changes in trend as I do the weather. But that's just an interest of mine. I know many people know there's more to me than what's literally on the surface (i.e. my clothing) but I've had some experiences through my branding where I just wanted to stand up and say what I was really thinking. (Ah, the art of being diplomatic.) So...maybe it's time to say it like it is?

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Belly Beautiful

For the longest time, ladies who are expecting, have had a challenging quest of finding appropriate fitting clothing here within the city. I've heard from many women who have had to make out-of-town trips in search of quality maternity clothing- which more often than not- don't come cheap. 

Belly Beautiful, Saint John's new maternity apparel boutique, just opened its doors on Prince William Street a little over a month ago. The store is helping to fill the gap for pregnant women looking for clothing that they can feel good and look good in! They deserve to be able to find that without leaving our city.

You can find the shop at the corner of Princess and Prince William, right across the street from Bourbon Quarter and Magnolia Cafe!

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Friday, January 13, 2012

Shoe Sale!

I'm sure you might have heard aboutt the awesome Boxing Day Sales that Urban Shoe Myth had going post-holidays. The even better news is that those sales are still in place and even more footwear is 30%, 50% or even 75% off to make way for new spring merchandise. In fact, most of the store is on sale right now!

And that's not all. I was in the store earlier this week helping a friend pick out boots when I heard about the new, even better offer. If you purchase 2 pairs of footwear, you get an additional 20% off your purchase, an extra 30% off if you leave with 3 pairs, and if you happen to find 4 pairs that you cannot live without, you'll get an extra 40% off your total.

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Thursday, January 12, 2012

Style Challenge

You might remember about a year ago when Je Suis Prest Boutique (JSP) hosted a style challenge on their Facebook page (as shown above). All you had to do was post a picture of yourself wearing an ensemble from the uptown boutique on their Facebook page for the chance to win a gift certificate to the store.

And now, a year later, this contest is back. Kiera, owner of JSP, is offering $100 to their best dressed customer. From now until January 20, you can post a picture of yourself in your favourite JSP piece(s) on their Facebook wall. On January 20, they'll be putting all the photos in an album where FB fans can vote on their favourite look. The winner of the challenge (person with the most votes) will score a $100 to spend at the store!

Find something to wear- not a problem. Now to pick a favourite, that takes some serious consideration!

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