I'm giving away a Kenzo Tiger clutch bag!

Win a Kenzo Tiger bag

Um, last week I hit 3,000 followers on Bloglovin', and I have no idea how that happened. Could you imagine being in the company of three thousand people that actually cared enough to listen (or read) to what you had to say each day? It's completely insane, but in the best possible way.

See, in the past two years of blogging I've constantly felt as though what I had to say never really mattered, and that everything I did was almost like a ticking time bomb. Surely, at some point you guys would get tired of lil old me..surely!? But here we are reaching 3k on Bloglovin (and 5k on my Youtube channel, ahem). Lord knows what I've done to deserve having you guys come back each and every day, but whatever it is that I'm doing, I'll make sure I keep on doing it.

So I guess what I'm trying to say here is thank you. Thank you very, very, very much. I know I might not always blog as often as I'd like to, and I know I'm seriously crap at replying to comments (I'm about to reply to everything tonight!), but I really do appreciate each and every one of you. I'm not an established blogger by any means - far from it in fact - but you lot have seriously changed my life. If it wasn't for you, I'd still be miserable, I'd still be working in a job I hated and I wouldn't have made half of the friends that I have today. You. Guys. Are. AWESOME.

So awesome in fact, that I think it's only fair that I give away a pretty awesome prize as a thank you for being so damn great. So uh, how about a Kenzo bag? Will that do? No? Well how about some exciting news to top it all off? Here goes..

As some of you may have seen on my Twitter already..I'm going to be publishing a book! Now this isn't going to be a typical blog book about my life - instead it's going to be a bloggers planner that's affordable (yay!), good looking (double yay!) and filled with loads of unpublished tips and tricks to help you and your blog. I'm currently in chat with the printers, and it looks as though everything will be ready around Christmas time (hello, Santa), but before everything gets finalised I want you guys to get involved, so if you have any ideas about what you'd like to see in the planner, let me know! Exciting times eh?

So more about that Kenzo bag, because we all know that's what you're hear for (no shame). To be in with a chance of winning all you need to do is:

Follow Cocochic on Bloglovin'
- Leave a comment down below including your name and email
- Let me know what you'd like to see in the new blog planner!

The winner will be chosen at random in one month (on October 18th 2015), and will be contacted via email. This giveaway is international. One entry per person. The winner will have three days to claim their prize before another winner will be chosen. I love you and good bye.

How to get more followers on Pinterest

How to get more followers on Pinterest

I love Pinterest, you love Pinterest, we all love Pinterest! Lord knows why, but there's just something so addictive about re-pinning pictures from the internet. It's almost like lazy crafting without the paper cuts and glue highs. Maybe that analogy was a little off. I'm rolling with it.

See the thing is, no matter how much I love using Pinterest, I've never really used it 'seriously' - AKA, I've never really tried to gain followers or re-pins. That's fine for most people, but as someone that relies on blog views for a living, it one day it dawned on me that maybe I should start using it a little more strategically (but of course, keep on posting those cat memes).

Now generally speaking, the more followers you have on Pinterest means the more people you will get clicking over to your site. So, what do you need to do? Well, you need to get more followers, obviously. Oh, you mean you want to know how? Oh alright then nosey, I guess I can let you in on my secrets. Here's how I went from 500 to 1000 followers in just over a month..

Make your blog Pinterest-friendly

Making sure you have the 'pin' button on your photos can make all the difference, as well as ensuring you have the Pinterest widget visible on your blog. If someone's reading up on your latest post, they might not have Pinterest on their mind, so giving them subtle hint along the way can remind them they hey, you are on Pinterest and you welcome others to re-pin your stuff. Sounds simple, but oh the difference it can make!

Make your pictures Pin-worthy

Just because you want people to re-pin your #ootd, doesn't mean they want to. Why? Because - gulp - your pictures might not be pretty enough. Of course, you're pretty enough, but maybe your photo style doesn't quite fit with their Pinterest 'style'. Adding extra photos to you posts will up the chances of them re-pinning your pics. Maybe you could even check out what your current followers like to pin, and slightly shape your own snaps around that!

Cosy up with Viral Woot

Viral Woot is kind of Pinterest cheating, but also kinda not. I love it, either way. Basically all you have to do is sign up to the website, set up your Pinterest account with them and start earning points. You earn points by following and liking other people's pictures on Viral Woot, and you give away those points when someone likes or follows you. It sounds spammy, but it actually helps you generate real life followers that (gasp) actually like what you post! It's also helped me find a bunch of new accounts that I never would have found before.

Pin other people's content

How boring would it be if you clicked on someone's Pinterest and all you saw was their face, or five million pictures of the same cat? They might have an amazing face/cat but, regardless that stuff can get old quickly. It's important to re-pin other peoples stuff to add both variety to your boards and also share a little bit of the creative love. Plus, you never know, they might check back to your site and fall in love with your pictures too. Do you see how this works here?

Name your boards wisely

If you're creating a board about your favourite outfits, try to steer clear from calling it something cryptic and/or irrelevant. You may well love those song lyrics, but are people really going to find your board by Googling Taylor Swift's lyrics to her latest song? Maybe not. It sounds boring, but calling a board something like 'The Best Fashion Blogger Outfits' can make a world of difference.

Talk to other people

I've said this before and I'll say it again. Social media is called social for a reason. How do you get more followers? You talk to them! Think of every person you talk to as a potential follower, whether they have one follower or on million. If you get along with someone online they'll be more inclined to check out your Pinterest than if you simply as for a 'follow for follow'.

Pin things, but not too often

It's so easy to get carried away with pinning fifty thousand pictures of good looking food - trust me, I know. But just think of what you'd like to see when logging into Pinterest after a long day. If you're following a bunch of boards, do you really want to see pages and pages filled with desserts, all from the same account? I love desserts just as much (probably more) as the next person, but if I wanted to see just those photos I'd only follow those people. Limit your photo sharing to just a few per pinning session. It's quality, not quantity. 

Of course, you can always just ask people to follow you as well - kinda like I'm going to now. Hey! You! Follow me on Pinterest! Or else. If that doesn't work, then man, I don't know what to tell you.

Do you use Pinterest to benefit your blog?

Win a Fujifilm Instax Mini25 Camera!

Just a quickie tonight before I head off to bed / watch Youtube and complain about how tired I am until I fall asleep at around 4am. Some of you that follow me on Instagram will know this already, but it was too much of an awesome giveaway to keep my mouth shut. Basically, Fujifilm and I have teamed up to give away a Fujifilm Instax Mini25 Camera (and case!) to one of my Instagram followers. Not to shabby, huh? To enter all you need to do is sacrifice a first born...OR you can do the following:

- Follow @cocochicblog on Instagram
- Follow @fujiinstaxuk on Instagram
- Tag a friend in the comments of this picture

UK entrants only - ends 01.09.15

Good luuuuuuck!!

The reality of being a fashion blogger

So I'm sitting here, wearing head to toe Chanel (this season, obviously) with Anna Wintour on the phone (begging me to be on the cover of the September issue) and more money sitting in my Hermes bag than I know what to do with. Ah, the life of a fashion blogger, eh? It almost sounds too good to be true.

And, unfortunately, it kinda is. I mean,don't get me wrong, I bloody love what I do beyond belief, and I feel insanely lucky each and every day that I get to wake up when I want, and write about what I want. But man, it's definitely not as glamourous as us gals make it out to be. There's no Hermes in sight - or head to toe Chanel for that matter. Instead, it's more like empty MacDonalds boxes and head to toe Primark pyjamas. But if I'm being completely honest, that's more my kind of thing. So understated, you know?

So anyway. We all know I like to keep it real (always wanted to say that) here on the blog, so I've decided to make a post all about what really happens behind the scenes. That's right guys, I'm not the sophisticated, composed, completely faultless human being you all thought I was.. *cough*. In fact, I'm writing this whilst wearing a tomato stained vest top right this second. Oh the glamour! Speaking of which..

You blog about pretty clothes, but spend your life in your pyjamas

Wait, did you really think I wore heels all day long? On these cobblestone English streets? Hell. No. Sure, I wear my nice clothes when I'm out and about, but as soon as I get inside off go the dresses (and the bra) and on go the tracksuit bottoms. Sitting at a desk in skintight leather trousers gets...itchy, to say the least. Elasticated waist bands are where it's at. 

And what about days off? There are no days off

I guess this is all relative depending on how strict you are with what you do, but I'm one of those people that just keep on trucking no matter what. I guess when you work for yourself (or even just like to blog, a lot) there isn't much that can stop you from posting, whether it's illness, school, sleep, or even a holiday (gotta get poolside snaps). Would you judge me if I told you I skipped Uni sometimes just so I can blog? I hope my lecturer doesn't read this.

The most menial things will seem like a day out

Since days off are pretty much non-existent, you end up getting super excited whenever you leave the house. Today I went to the post office and bought some milk. It was probably the most fun I had had all week. I wish I was lying.

But despite all this, people will never believe you're actually busy

I wish the majority of my day was spent shopping and taking selfies, but the fact is is that most of the time I'm just replying to emails and filing out paperwork. Self assessment tax forms are the devil - s'all I'm sayin'.

Friends will think you're a millionaire (you're not)

Sometimes my bank balance will look really, really nice. Sometimes I'll be living off of Super Noodles. The fact is is that freelance work is never steady money, no matter how successful you are. There have been times where I haven't earned a single penny for months, and there have been times when I've felt like one of those cool pimps in MTV music videos making it rain over the sexy naked ladies. Only they dress better than I do..

Most of the money you earn will go back into what you do

Cameras, laptops, memory cards - I hate to think of how much I've spent on 'equipment' over the years. It's not even just useful things either. I'm forever spending money on new photo props just to make sure my flatlays don't all look the same. If I come home with a fresh bunch of flowers, you know I'm about to shoot some blog pics. Why else would I buy them!?

You'll start noticing (and hating) pointless things about yourself

For every decent outfit shot there are fifty more terrible ones. I guess on average we shoot around two hundred pictures of each outfit, each time - and guess who has to go through all of them at the end of the day? Yup, me. You'd think I would have gotten used to seeing photos of myself, but every new #ootd makes me cringe just as much as the last. I have a bump on my nose that I never noticed before, I have a vein that sits around my mouth that I never noticed before and my ankles are bigger than I'd like them to be. I'm aware I sound deranged. I guess with this you can either let it bring you down or you can just laugh it off - which is exactly why I've spent the past few weeks saving all of my best/worst outfit shots for a future blog post. Heh.

You'll either be cold, or really really warm

So you know that thing about fashion always being a season ahead of itself? Yeah, it's kinda the same for us bloggers. In the outfit snaps above you can see me wearing French Connections A/W collection (which is insane, btw) and - whilst I might look fairly comfortable - I was sporting this RSVP wool jumper on one of the hottest days of the year. Same goes for shooting Spring/Summer collections. The amount of times I've worn a swimsuit in the peak of winter is, well, chilling..(sorry).

And finally, no matter who you are, you'll always get weird looks from the public

I often wonder what people must think of me when they see me getting my pose on in the streets. They must either think I'm super important or just really, really weird. We both know the answer to that one. Obviously the first option is the right one. Obviously.

Now if you'll excuse me. I have to go and do really important blogger things like change the cat litter and take the rubbish out..

Can you guys relate to any of these misconceptions at all (please tell me I'm not alone)?

French Connection RSVP Knit *
French Connection Marie Skirt *
French Connection Mules from Cloggs *

Web design and HTML tips for bloggers

I'm one of those really cool people that finds HTML fun. And by that, I mean I had no life when I was a teenager so instead of going out partying I opted to learn how to code Myspace layouts like a pro - who knew it would ever actually come in handy for me one day!?

Anyway, I'm always getting questions from my friends about how to use HTML to do certain things on blogs and websites, so I decided to make a blog post all about it in hopes to help a few of you guys and gals reading this. If you're a HTML king, this might not be of any use to you, but if you're a bit of a n00b (no sweat, we all were once!) then hopefully this will be a bit of a gold mine if you want to start pimping out your site like a pro.
 

Create a search bar

I guess search bars are pretty self explanatory, right? A lot of platforms these days automatically plonk a search bar into your site, but if it doesn't (or if you simply don't like the look of the one they give you) you can go ahead and give this one a go. To activate it, all you need to do is copy the code below and simple change the 'your-url.com' part to - you guessed it - your own URL! You can also feel free to play around with the width and height of the search box, depending on where you want to put it. If you want to change the colour of the search box borders, just change #000000 to whatever colour takes your fancy using a Colour Picker Tool. 

How to do it [COPY AND PASTE]:

<form method="get" action="http://www.YOUR-URL.com/search.php"> 
<table cellpadding="0px" cellspacing="0px"> <tr> 
<td style="border-style:solid none solid solid;border-color:#000000;border-width:1px;"> <input type="text" name="zoom_query" style="width:200px; border:0px solid; height:17px; padding:0px 3px; position:relative;"> </td>
<td style="border-style:solid;border-color:#000000;border-width:1px;"> 
<input type="submit" value="" style="border-style: none; background: url('http://i60.tinypic.com/2ppmv6c.png') no-repeat; width: 26px; height: 19px;">
</td> </tr> </table> </form>

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Add a language translator

This is something that I've only recently done, but it's something I wish I had done sooner. I don't know about you guys, but judging by my Google Analytics reports (you can see my Google Analytics for Beginners post here) a nice handful of you guys come from outside of the UK. The Google Translator is one of the best, which is why I've decided to link it here, but there are a few others on the interwebs too.

How to do it:
 

To turn your blog or website into something suitable for all languages, all you have to do is head on over to the Google Translator Website Manager, add your URL to the database, and follow the rest of the instructions! You can pick from either a physical widget (as pictured above) or a toolbar that appears whenever someone from a different country logs onto your page. I've chosen to do the latter, but they both work just as well!

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Make an Instagram widget

I always get asked about how I make the Instagram widgets on my blog, but the truth is, I don't make em, Snapwidget does! I've been using Snapwidget for a while now, and I've never had any issue with it at all.


How to do it:
 

It's as simple as just heading over to the Snapwidget website, entering your Instagram user name and playing around with a few different settings. Then all you have to do is copy and paste the code they give you, put it onto your site and you're done! It's pretty much fool-proof, no matter how much of a newbie you are. And hey, doesn't it look nice!?

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Make social media follow buttons

AddThis is a fairly recent discovery of mine, but I've already recommended it to so many bloggy friends. It basically (amongst other things) allows you to create social media icons suited to you, which you can place in varuious places on your website. You can add these social icons to the bottom of your posts, in a sidebar or even have them appear at the top of the page when someone clicks on your site (which is what I've decided to do). You wouldn't believe the amount of follows you get on your social sites just from having one installed!

How to do it:
 

Simply create an account/log in to AddThis, click on 'tools' (in the top bar) and select whichever tool takes your fancy. Then all you have to do is configure which social channels you'd like to use by adding your usernames and URLs. Get the code, pop it on your website and presto!

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Put two images next to eachother

I decided to add this in purely because I get asked this the most, which sounds pretty crazy considering it looks like it would be the most simple thing to do in terms of HTML. Annoyingly enough, a lot of sites will always put images underneath eachother, unless you code them properly. Et voila. To add your own pictures using HTML, upload them onto a website like Photobucket or Tiny Pic, copy the 'Direct Link' and replace the 'Place Picture Link Here' with that code! Then all you have to do is replace the 'Place Link Here' text with the link you want your picture to point to when someone clicks it. Simples.


How to do it [COPY AND PASTE]:
 

<div class="nav3" style="height:705px;">
<a href="PLACE LINK HERE"><img src="PLACE PICTURE LINK HERE"></a>
<a href="PLACE LINK HERE"><img src="PLACE PICTURE LINK HERE"></a>
</div>

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Turn a picture into a clickable link

Sometimes you just want to click on a picture, rather than a link. Am I right? I find this works really well for things like headers and any images you want to put into your sidebar, but it can work for just about anything. It also allows you to add ALT text as well, which will help your pictures show up more on Google!


How to do it [COPY AND PASTE]:
 

<a href="INSERT LINK HERE">
<img src="INSERT IMAGE LINK" alt="INSERT ALT TEXT HERE" width="42" height="42" border="0"> </a>

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Hope this helps some of you guys! Feel free to ask any questions in the old comments below.