"Happiness Trumps Everything." - Julie Weinstein of "From Prosecco to Plaid" on blogging, being real and designing her own life.
L: Where did you get the idea of starting "From Prosecco to Plaid?”
J: I was living in New York City at the time, but knew I was moving to Houston in the coming months. I was a little burnt out at the time with my 9-5, and I needed a creative outlet (I know a lot of bloggers say this, but it’s true!). I have always loved writing, so I decided to write about all the things I love. It was a cold day in December of 2011, and I took out my laptop and just started writing. It’s been one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.
L: It seems like everyone and their mother has a blog these days. What made you think you could stand out and how have you managed to do so over the years?
J: It’s true! Everywhere you turn there is a new blogger popping up, and I think it’s great. There’s room for all of us in this community/industry for sure. I try as hard as possible to stay true to my voice and who I am. I write about what I love and what I am passionate about in the hopes that the passion comes through in my writing. I also write some very personal posts on my blog, and I think people like that. When people can relate and realize it’s a real person behind the blog, it’s refreshing (or so I think!).
L: You've got a pretty significant following on social media. How are you building it and why is social media significant for what you're trying to build?
J: Slow and steady wins the race! I’ve had a blog for a long time now, so some might think I should have significantly more social media followers than I do, but I’m glad I’m building my following in a pretty organic way. I want people to follow me because they WANT to follow me and they like what I post. So, in how I’m building it - I just post what I love, what inspires me, and what I think might make someone else happy and/or inspired. Social media is significant for what I’m trying to build because the more followers I have on social media, the more people will then find my blog, and I’d love as many people as possible to read what I have to say (if they want to, that is!).
L: You're very open with your audience - in one post, you even write about why therapy has been such a crucial part of your journey and why you think everyone needs a therapist. What gives you the courage to share so openly, and what kind of positive impact do you feel like you've made as a result of it?
J: I’m not really sure what gives me the courage, but I think it has something to do with wanting to have a positive impact on as many people as possible. And if that means me talking about how I think therapy is the shit (yes, I really do believe everyone should have a therapist, no matter how ‘sane’ you might be!!), and my post then inspires someone to go find a therapist, then I’m happy. I feel being real and open and honest in my writing is not only therapeutic for me (selfish? maybe!), but I really think it can help people. I’m a real person, with real feelings, and real experiences. Sometimes one might think I overshare, but again, if it helps at least one person, then I’m thrilled I shared what I did.
L: Where do you see "From Prosecco to Plaid" being in five or ten years?
J: Oh gosh! I don’t even know what I’m doing this weekend! Who knows, but I hope it continues to evolve into a place where people like to come. I know its just a little sliver of the massive world wide web, but hopefully my tiny little corner of the internet continues to inspire people and make a positive impact on my readers’ lives. I’ve always wanted to write a book, so maybe one day I’ll turn my blog into a book. Or a movie! That would be fun. But for now, just taking it one day at a time, and smiling and having fun along the way.
L: You write a lifestyle blog, and I can't help but notice that you know a thing or two about having a great lifestyle yourself! You work as a managing editor for 20 hours a week and manage your own social media marketing company, LJ Creative House, as well. Your life isn't the typical 9 to 5. What led you to create the life you're living in? Why do you think it's important to build a life around following your passions?
J: At the end of the day, I want to be happy. I think everyone deserves happiness. I really do. Life is short. Happiness is a choice. I try my very best, in everything I do, to stay positive. I think it’s so important to build a life around following your passions because, at the end of the day, this is all we have (yikes, getting too deep here??!). This is your life. Make it one you WANT to be apart of. Make it one that makes you smile. Happiness trumps everything.
L: Thanks for sharing all of your wisdom with TLF readers, Julie. We love you!