I recently talked to Erica Stolman, the creator of the blog, Fashion Lush.
I started GIRL CRUSHING on Erica a couple years ago & I’ve been and stalking her blog ever since. This gal is a BAD👏🏻 ASS👏🏻 blogger who started blogging before it became “cool”.
She also keeps ish completely transparent with her audience.
BUT – that’s not all that there is to this gal. She can not only put together a gorge outfit, but she can FRIGGIN’ CODE – and she taught herself how to…
… find yourself a girl who can do both – rock small sunglasses with a disco ball in hand and code her own blog!!
Erica is the ~web guru~ behind Blog-doo. This gal created the blog design company with her BFF, Lauryn Evarts from The Skinny Confidential to share Erica’s coding skills and Lauryn’s savvy business skills & branding expertise. Combined, the two have OVER 1 MILLION page views per month.
* in sarcastic voice * :’)
Alright – let’s hop into the interview BEFORE I give away any more of the dirty deets about this badass blogger!
Without further ado, here is the woman, the myth, the coder… ERICA STOLMAN!
HAILS: How and why did you start blogging and creating content full time? What is the story behind the name, “Fashionlush”?! What has been your “favorite” hurtle or challenge as a blogger?
+ I started blogging in 2009. I was working towards my college degree in Fashion Merchandising. Blogging was pretty new to me, and new in general, but I became obsessed with reading blogs & was always trying to find new bloggers. It consumed a lot of my time, so eventually I just went ahead and started one of my own. It was a hobby at this time, because my main focus was school, but I was having a lot of fun with it.
Being that I was in college- everyone around me was a total lush *in a totally normal college way*. I enjoyed getting loose at karaoke night every week, but my main focus during this time with fashion. So… Fashionlush vs. boozy lush made sense to me. The one word thing, I am not sure. I just wanted to makeup a new word I guess. It was a long time ago.
I think the biggest challenge with blogging is juggling all of the content creation. It’s not as seamless as it may look. Getting the perfect shot for Instagram, along with getting up a great blog post, it’s a lot to manage sometimes along with having a social life away from the computer.
HAILS: You have such a unique and honest voice and your transparency with your audience is so admirable. How did you learn to find and share you voice on your blog? Were you always comfortable sharing your voice on the blog?
+ Thank you! I definitely wasn’t always comfortable sharing my voice on the blog. In the beginning I feel, looking back, I was trying to fit a mold of what I assumed people liked. Over time, the longer I blogger the more confident I became, & my voice just evolved with the blog! I think finding your voice is always a process though. I also read all of my copy out loud to make sure it sounds like me talking (lol).
HAILS: You are SOOO engaged with your followers and that is one of the many reasons why I’ve been #fangirling and following you for years. I’m sure you get so many questions about blogging because of the authentic and genuine community you have created. What is the question you get asked most as a blogger and influencer? Any tips and tricks for someone new to the blogging world?
+ You’re so sweet! I love connecting with my readers- the comments & words of encouragement mean a lot to me. I think the question I get asked the most would be just that- how do you become a blogger. It is such a loaded question & so much goes into it. I started it as a hobby knowing very little, but now it is a competitive industry so you really have to go into it with a solid plan. That is not to intimidate anyone- but it’s just a good idea to be strategic before you jump in head first!
HAILS: Tell us about Blog-doo, the blog design company you started with your BFF, Lauryn Evarts from TSC. What is it the most rewarding and the most difficult aspect of owning a business with your BFF?!
+ blog-doo is a blog design company we started 6 years ago & it has been such a fun experience. The most rewarding aspect of owning a business with my best friend is the fact we get to be creative together. We are always having brainstorming meetings, planning the next project, & calling each other at all hours of the day with fun new ideas. The most difficult aspect is we bicker like sisters haha. We have been best friends for 16 years so I think it comes with the territory. Luckily we get over things pretty fast, like one hour & we’re on the phone again shooting the shit about something else.
HAILS: Also girl, you can write code..?! That’s SO freaking bad ass! How did you learn to code and how long did it take you to learn how to code?
+ haha yes! I actually taught myself how to code back in the days of Myspace. Lauryn & I wanted the prettiest Myspace accounts, so of course I started learning HTML so I could customize our pages. I forgot about coding for a long time until I started the blog. I am a sucker for good design, so I started relearning code (HTML, CSS, PHP) to style my blog. I did a few blog redesigns, got pretty good at it, then I did Lauryn’s blog… & that is what gave us the idea to start blog-doo. I loveeee coding. It’s nerdy I guess, but I have a lot of fun coding & figuring out how to do cool new things to my site & our client’s sites!
HAILS: So you not only can create a successful blog, and business, but you also have recently launched “Fashionlush Presets”. Your aesthetic is on FLEEK and it’s awesome to see you share that with your audience. I also haven’t seen any other blogger create something like that. What was the catalyst that brought you to creating the presets?
+ the reason I did the presets was mainly because I started sharing some before & after editing pics called “tap to edits” on my insta-stories. I was getting SO many DM’s asking what filter it was. It was always my Lightroom presets & I hated I couldn’t give a more accessible answer. I already had my presets made & tweaked to perfection- so I figured it made the most sense to share them with everyone. Editing photos is one of my favorite parts of blogging, so this has been a lot of fun for me & I am already working on more presets.
HAILS: Do you have any tips for someone preparing for college graduation and is entering the real world with a side hustle?
+ I think a side hustle is a great idea when entering the “real world” because it gives you a cushion to decide what to do- as long as you don’t get stuck in the side hustle. Once you decide on the direction you want to go, keep your eye on the prize & stay focused.
HAILS: What is the best piece of advice you have received?
+ Lauryn once told me “it’s better to be a big fish in a small pond than a small fish in a big pond”. It was around the time I was struggling to find out who I was as a blogger, and it just stuck with me!
HAILS: Where are your goals for Fashionlush short and long term?
+ short term- I am really focused on the Fashionlush Presets… although I hope to be focused on them long term as well! I also hope to expand the brand to a product. I may have an idea in mind, but we will see. Whatever it is, I want it to be a great fit with my audience & true to who I am.
Rapid fire Q’s:
HAILS: What is something your followers don’t know about you?
+ i can’t think of anything! i am pretty open these days…
HAILS: What are your closet staples?
+ my FRAME denim jeans, oversized t-shirt dresses, white sneakers, & my balenciaga moto boots.
HAILS: Fave accessory?!
+ belts & earrings, can’t pick just one.
HAILS: Go to meal?
+ Lox & bagel probably. I don’t eat it daily, but I would if I could.
HAILS: Fave drink/ food in San Diego?
+ favorite place to eat/drink is Buona Forchetta, Brooklyn Girl, and Liberty Public Market!
HAILS: Guilty pleasure?
+ flaming hot cheetos
Where can we find you?!
Thanks again, Erica!
MMK now who is getting disco pants with me?!!
LMK what you thought of this interview with Erica on my latest INSTAGRAM !!