State of the Blog: Giveaway and Housekeeping

Apr 15, 2014

About This Week

It’s going to be a crazy week at my house.  The big move commences tomorrow, and the packing has decimated my will to live.  Posting should be back to normal on Thursday, but for right now, my free hours are dedicated to lovingly wrapping my knick-knacks in bubble paper.  So things are going to be a bit hectic, so I’ll be in the comments and on social media a bit less until things settle down.

NCAA Tournament Giveaway

This was out 3rd Annual March Madness tournament giveaway pool.  We had 384 participants, the top three brackets won prizes.  And the winners are:

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Congratulations to the winners (e-mail at the capitolhillstyle (at) gmail address to claim your prize), it was a crazy year.  Thank you to everyone who participated, I’ll see you next year.

A Word on Featured Posts

If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know that I don’t often do sponsored or featured posts.  The rare exceptions are made for brands or products that I already use and love (Lo & Sons, M.M. LaFleur) or brands that I think my readers will love (Astley Clarke).  And even if I host a feature, I would rather have an item for myself and one for a giveaway than cash for my endorsement.

Over the next few months, I have a couple of sponsored posts coming up.  I know some of you have said that you don’t like these types of posts, and they’re not going to become the norm here, but the upcoming posts are for brands that I love and I think you will too.

I take my recommendations for products seriously, and that’s why I buy the vast majority of featured and reviewed products myself.  Frankly, I don’t like being told what I should write about something, and spending my own money gives me that freedom.  So please understand that I wouldn’t support a product just because they’re gifting me or paying me, and even when it is a sponsored post, I negotiate the deals to maintain that integrity.

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  1. Joules says:

    Hi Belle! Thanks for the full disclosure on the sponsored posts. I, for one, don’t mind them–especially the blogger is very transparent on the subject. You put a lot of work into this blog, you should get compensated in some way!

    Style by Joules

    • e says:

      Completely agree here – I’m just glad you’re continuing to post at all during this major life and career transition you are making! You’re not going to disable comments on sponsored posts, are you? TheHairpin does that and it drives me nuts.

      • Belle says:

        No, that seems silly. Why would they do that?

        • e says:

          I always assumed it’s so there is no negative feedback about the brand, but it makes the whole thing seem like blog isn’t really endorsing the product as much as just giving them ad space. I’ve always appreciated how sincere you’ve been about all products you review on here!

  2. Sarah says:

    You go, girl! Thanks for addressing this head on.

  3. marisa says:

    Just another reason why I love this blog – I have no problem with sponsored posts, but hate when bloggers try to hide the fact. Thanks for being so upfront!

  4. lee says:

    I love the way you handle sponsored posts. Your integrity is part of the reason why I keep coming back to this site, and wholeheartedly endorse ot to friends and colleagues. Best of luck to you!

  5. B says:

    Your transparency and honesty about sponsored posts demonstrates your high level of integrity. You always post very informational original content. Since I have no problem with clicking through to your great picks, I don’t see why I would object to sponsored posts.
    I’m looking forward to them!

  6. ZK says:

    I’m not a fan of sponsored posts BUT I do appreciate honesty and it sounds like you are going to be dong that, Belle. So it’s a win-win.

  7. I only care about sponsored posts when I think the blogger is being dishonest or it happens too frequently. Other than that…I just don’t get why people think blogs shouldn’t make money. You spend God knows how many hours (I spend at least 20 a week, and I have a small blog), providing content thousands of people want to read. Heaven forbid you should be compensated in any way. Next thing you know, people will say writers, artists, etc shouldn’t be compensated either.

    Stepping down off my soap box now.

  8. Chloe says:

    I agree with all of the above, and appreciate the Liar Liar reference. Good luck with the move, and I’m looking forward to any and all posts you’ve got in the pipeline!

  9. Erin says:

    I’m not much of a commenter, but I just felt the need to share that you write one of the classiest blogs I know of! No over share, no narcissistic selfies, consistently good content, and you haven’t turned it into a sponsor-fest like so many others. I would entirely trust any product you recommend and wouldn’t be bothered by sponsored posts here and there because you have the reputation to back it up. Thank you for writing one of the few blogs I continue to read and enjoy.

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