Stuff Your Stockings with JUKI!

Are you excited about the holidays? We are! In today’s blog, we’ll share our top 10 stocking stuffers you can get for the sewist in your life! Perfect for our MO and MCS series, follow along as we share what’s new at JUKI and our top recommendations.

Clear Presser Foot – MCS

Focusing on multiple layers or sewing pieces where they need a clear view of their stitches? Then, the Clear Presser Foot is perfect for their next project! Since this presser foot is transparent, it helps them observe the stitches and fabric easily.

Easily keep an eye on the state of the fabric and its condition while sewing, and sew with comfort knowing they have a good eye on that stitch!

Double Fold Bias Binder – MCS

If they’re someone who enjoys creating apparel like tank tops and camisoles, the Double Fold Bias Binder is a great tool to keep in the kit! Seamlessly turn, bind and attach fabric strips to project edges in one step, helping them quickly create the perfect outfit for their next outing.

Belt Loop Binder – MCS

Create bracelets, finish belts, and belt loops, or create beautiful finished bags using the Belt Loop Binder! This presser foot automatically folds and sews with the coverstitch sewing and offers a tape size of 20 mm and a finished size of 10mm.

Curve Foot -MO

If they’re working on pieces with curved edges like blouses, dresses, or even capes, the Curve Foot is excellent at helping them create those clean and beautifully finished seams. Due to the size of the presser foot, they can easily make small turns compared to the wider ones with the standard presser foot. It’s useful for sewing tight curves on their apparel and home décor projects!

Elasticator Presser Foot – MO

Creating pieces like lingerie, swimwear, or even home décor like bed sheets can be done easier using the Elasticator Presser Foot! As it guides and stretches the elastic as its being sewn onto their apparel projects, the presser foot overlocks the edge of the fabric. The tensions can be changed on the machine with the roller clamping screw, and this foot can attach elastic tape with a width of 5 to 8mm.

Tractor Presser Foot – MO

If they’re working on apparel or home décor, the Tractor Presser Foot is an excellent addition to their tool kit! Using this accessory, they can smoothly ride up and down the multi-layered part of the material while preventing stitch skipping, perfect for attaching quilt pieces or creating garment projects like bathing suits.

Gathering Presser Foot – MO

For the gathered look on blouses and dresses, having a presser foot like the Gathering Presser Foot is great to have on hand! Easily gather the fabric as the user sews due to the foot’s shape, and stay away from slipping or sliding up and down the stitch line.

This accessory is helpful for apparel creators that like adding texture and design to their projects, like pillowcases, aprons, and more.

Piping Presser Foot – MO

Add a professional touch to projects with the Piping Presser Foot! By defining the edges or style lines of garment and house projects using the Piping Presser Foot, they can create projects pieces will think are store-bought! This foot helps sewists create projects with a more professional look thanks to the clean finishes.

This foot accessory is also great for adding that professional touch to quilts, cushions, and handbags.

Universal Blind Stitch Presser Foot (For Right & Left Needle) – MO

Working on some fun apparel? The Universal Blind Stitch Presser Foot is perfect for sewing a decorative flatlock! This stitch is ideal for their apparel projects because of its strength, commonly used in athletic wear. They can also create blind hem stitching, hide seams, or create beautiful texture on their blouses and add pintucks with this accessory!

MO Attachment Sets

If your family member or friend is a sewist who creates an assortment of projects or is a project focused on a hobby like quilting, checks out our MO Attachment Sets! These kits offer a versatile selection of presser feet that match the users’ needs depending on their sewing level and presser foot needs.

Practical sewing use and enjoy adding decorative stitching? Check out the MO Attachment Set 6pcs created for the MO-80CB. This set includes a Universal Blind Stitch Presser Foot (for right and left needle), Elasticator Presser Foot, Beading Presser Foot, Piping Presser Foot, Gathering Presser Foot, and Taping Foot. Perfect for a selection of projects, like apparel and quilting.

If they’re still building their skills on the MO overlock sergers, a set like the MO Attachment Set 3pcs is fantastic for beginners. Offering the Blind Stitch Presser Foot (for the right needle), Elasticator Presser Foot, and Cording Presser Foot, these pieces can help them start building their tool kit and works for both apparel and quilting projects.

For someone who’s practiced on the MO and is ready to test new skills like professional finished bags or piping on a quilt, check out the MO Attachment Set 6pcs. This set includes Blind Stitch Presser Foot (for the right needle), Elasticator Presser Foot, Cording Presser Foot, Beading Presser Foot, Piping Presser Foot, and Gathering Presser Foot. With these feet accessories in their arsenal, they’ll be able to go above and beyond when it’s time to clean up their project and complete a professional-looking end product.

Finally, if the sewist in your life works primarily on the MO machine, check out the MO Attachment Set 8pcs! With this large selection of presser feet options, sewists can easily create a versatile amount of projects, encouraging their skill growth! This set includes a Blind Stitch Presser Foot (for right needle), Universal Blind Stitch Presser Foot (for right and left needle), Elasticator Presser Foot, Cording Presser Foot, Beading Presser Foot, Curved Beading Presser Foot, Piping Presser Foot, and Gathering Presser Foot. With this set, they’ll be able to cover all the basics for creating a complete garment project.

We hope this helps you find the best stocking stuffer for the sewist who uses sergers in your life! From quilting to creating fashion to designing a home, having the right presser feet in your tool kit will make the next project more manageable. Which presser foot is on your holiday wishlist? Comment below!

JUKI Small Business Seminar: 5 Mistakes to Avoid in Your Small Business

Mistakes have a bad reputation in society, and we always try to avoid them, but mistakes can be seen as a lesson. Most people are afraid of opening their own business because they don’t want to make mistakes. However, those who own a business know that mistakes happen, and what you do after that matters. 

Business mistakes don’t stop your company from succeeding, but what they can do is help you figure out where you went wrong and help you create a better plan for the next time. Of course, you can’t avoid mistakes, but you can turn them into a learning experience and build a better company from them. 

The good thing is that we can prepare for some mistakes and hopefully prevent them from happening! So today, we will go through some of the top mistakes new business owners make and how to avoid doing it yourself. 

5 Common Mistakes New Businesses Make

Mistakes happen, and that’s okay! The key to avoiding them is having prevention plans in place. Here are the common mistakes we’re going to cover today and how you can avoid them:

  1. Don’t Forget Your Business Plan
  2. Know Your Finances
  3. Don’t Spread Yourself too Thin
  4. Know Your Target Audience 
  5. Don’t Forget Your Marketing Plan

Business Plan

Before you begin your business, one of the first things you should create is your business plan. This plan alone can help you succeed and stand out from competitors. What a plan can do for you is help you build momentum by creating a clear and researched idea that you can now put into play. 

Many people who want to start their own business tend to bite the bullet and do so without constructing a plan. Unfortunately, when you don’t know your niche, finances, business model, and logistics, you’re setting yourself up for future problems. These mistakes will cost you money, time, and effort. 

To avoid these mistakes, you need to create your business plan first and identify any unknown aspects before starting. For example, how are you going to ship your products? Where are you going to buy inventory from? How will you get your product out there?

Whenever you create or do something in your business, read back on your business plan to ensure your logistics, finances, and marketing can handle it. By creating your plan and having something to reference when making changes, you can fully comprehend what is happening in your company and improve.

Know Your Finances

When you don’t know your financial health, your company could be in trouble. 

When you start your business based on a hobby, we often skip the part where we get our ducks for finances. However, ask any business owner, and they’ll tell you that knowing your finances is one of the most important things to stay on top of. 

The good thing about business math is it’s pretty simple seeing how profitable your business can be:

Profit = Demand x (Revenue – Expenses)

The thing is, these expenses are everywhere and can pile up quickly if you don’t stay on top of them. Here are some of the costs you can accumulate in your business:

  1. Operating 
  2. Marketing
  3. Product
  4. Shipping
  5. Team

Here’s an example of the profit formula in play:

Assume 10,000 people are searching for handbags online per month. If half of this audience finds your e-shop, that is 5,000 potential buyers. 

Now let’s convert these viewers at an average of between 1% and 2%; that’s 50-100 sales. So if your average order value is $100 and you have a net profit margin of 30%, your profit will be anything between $1,500 and $3,000 per month. 

While these are rough estimates, if you’ve done the math on your product or service, you know what to expect once sales begin. Avoid common financial mistakes by keeping track of your potential profits and cash flow using the above formula.

Need help creating your business finance budget? Check out our article here on how to make your budget and calculate profit today. 

Don’t Spread Yourself Too Thin

While it can be exciting to open up your shop, one of the common mistakes many make is selling too many products. We know that when one item doesn’t sell well, our first response could be to add new and exciting products, but this isn’t always the best solution.

Remember to focus on your brand, not the products, when it comes to deciding what merchandise you’re going to sell in your shop. For example, if your brand focuses on a niche for handbags, you shouldn’t post products that aren’t related, like pet accessories or gadgets. Knowing your brand and audience is how you’ll obtain sales. 

A better example of adding a product is if you create handbags, you can add new products like wallets. It keeps within your niche and stays true to your brand. Spreading yourself thin with by-products can often be due to not knowing your brand or audience well, so it’s best to plan out what products you’d want to create first, then make and add them.

Know Your Target Audience 

When you’re planning your business, take into account who your target audience is. The best research for this will lead you in the right direction for what products to create and where you can reach your audience. It’s easier to create a product for an established niche than to create a place for a product. 

When it comes to researching your niche, keep in mind to review their numbers and analytics and how to interact with them. Keeping up with your niche can assist you in making sales, updating or creating new products, and building that connection between your business and the consumer. 

Remember, even niches have niches, and finding your ideal customer can take time and research. 

Have trouble finding your niche? Check out our article here for some tips to start today.

Don’t Forget Your Marketing Plan

You could have the best product in the world, but without proper marketing, no one will know about it. So if you’re setting up your online shop, that should mean you have a business plan ready. Within this should be your target audience. Creating your marketing plan should be easy once you know who your customers are! 

Keep in mind that if you don’t know who your customers are or where to find them, you will have a difficult time creating a marketing plan. 

Try and focus on a well-rounded marketing plan that hits all corners of your niche. Of course, some channels will have more traffic than others, which is okay! However, whatever channels you decide to market on, make sure that they receive the focus needed to get your brand and product out there. Whether organic (non-paid) or non-organic (paid advertising), ensure your plan is in place before opening your shop.

Have trouble creating a marketing plan? Check out our article here on how to write your marketing plan today. 

Mistakes Happen, Be Prepared! 

Don’t let mistakes be taboo for you and your company. No one can predict when things will go sideways, but we can be prepared and ready to bring it right back on track. Keep in mind these tasks below when it’s time to start your small business:

  1. Make sure to create a business plan
  2. Keep up with finances and have a budget ready. 
  3. Focus on what products are essential, and stay away from stretching yourself too thin. 
  4. Know who your niche is and how to reach them
  5. Create your marketing plan before setting up a shop

These tasks may take some hard work, but you’ll be happier with the success rate of your company and the comfort of having something to follow along with or fall back on when those mistakes happen.

Are you ready to start planning your business? Join us here to learn more about how JUKI can help you become your own boss today!

New Product Announcement: The New TL-15!

Introducing the new JUKI TL-15! The JUKI TL-15 is a high-performance sewing and quilting machine. Continuing the TL straight-stitch sewing machine legacy, the TL-15 is packed with features to ensure industrial-quality sewing. These features include a drop feed for free motion sewing, an industrial subtension system for perfectly straight stitches, a variable speed control slider, a large work area, and six presser feet.

In addition, the TL-15 has a large work area of up to 23 inches (with an auxiliary table attached), the TL-15 can handle large quilts, handbag making, or home decor projects with ease. Experience this workhorse sewing machine today! Create quilts, home decor, apparel, and handbags with excellent stitch quality every time while the speed that the TL-15 offers!

Features

  • Foot controller with thread trimming function
  • Automatic Thread Trimmer
  • Automatic Needle Threader
  • Thread Tension Scale
  • LED Light
  • Sub Tension Unit
  • Maximum Sewing Speed Control
  • Predetermined Stop Position of the Needle
  • Knee Lift Lever
  • Even Feed Foot
  • Heavy-Weight Materials are sewn with Ease
  • Easy Bobbin Replacement
  • Adjustment of Presser Foot Pressure

Included Accessories

The TL-15 includes Upper Feed Presser Foot with Quilt Guide, Zipper Attaching Foot, Quilting Foot Front Open Toe, and 1/4″ Quilting Foot for free motion quilting as well as a foot switch stopper that allows you to disable the automatic cutter.

In addition, the TL-15 has a large work area of up to 23 inches (with an auxiliary table attached), the TL-15 can handle large quilts, handbag making, or home decor projects with ease.

Specifications

Learn more about the NEW TL-15 at your nearest JUKI Dealer. To find your local JUKI Dealer, click here today!

It’s Always Halloween with Christina O.

With the fall season upon us and our favorite spooky holiday around the corner, we’re here to introduce Christina O, owner, and designer of Agashi! A handmade collection, the Agashi style focuses on modern gothic apparel & accessories; intended for those who love to celebrate Halloween every day of the year. Join us this month as we get to discover the history of how Agashi came to be and how Christina found her passion for fashion and running her shop.

From a young age, Christina became obsessed with sewing and crafting. From creating outfits that her Barbie dolls could wear to upcycling projects on her mother’s old Kenmore, Christina would constantly find a way to work on her craft. Then, with dreams of leaving her small town after high school to become a fashion designer, she focused on what she would need to do to achieve her goals.

Classic & Bat Wing Kiminos

Coming from a family where becoming a fashion designer seemed more like a faraway dream than reality, Christina was prepared to do everything it took. Evaluating her options, she entered her community college before transferring to Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP) for their fashion merchandising program. While her path to becoming a fashion designer changed for Christina and may have been different than she planned, her dream is still happening!

“It wasn’t going to happen easily for someone like me, and I was prepared to do whatever it took. Not having many resources will force you to become resourceful.”

While Christina admits she would’ve chosen the path of the self-taught designer over school, her hard work was beginning to pay off. After college, her downtime was focused on sewing and creating. However, after trying her hand at creating accessories for her shop, she soon realized apparel was her favorite project to focus on. By Halloween of 2010, she was able to move to Philadelphia, where she ended up meeting her future husband, Paul.

It wasn’t until 2013 that Christina launched her current fashion brand Agashi! With only $50 worth of material, she was able to put together a few harnesses and kawaii-style dresses for the first few months of her shop opening. Over the next couple of years, Christina would go on to add theatrical crinoline pieces and obtain some of her first custom-order customers, burlesque performers! This success was a step in the right direction, leading to her career change in 2015, where she could quit her day job and place all her focus on her brand.

Battress Gown

It was in 2017 when Christina and Paul moved into their first home in Philadelphia. Agashi began growing faster than ever, surpassing their home space and pushing Christina to open up her first official studio space in 2018, including shop assistants. While the shop continued to see great success over the next couple of years, 2020 brought the shop to a slow down, causing Agashi to be brought back home after closing the studio due to the pandemic.

Due to Christina’s passion for the business, Agashi is still live and running! She also launched her first YouTube channel for sewing, DIY, and Behind the Seams content during the summer of 2020, creating a new connection to her community of followers and new sewists. During this time, she began modeling a new path for her business, one where her passion for creating fashion and teaching sewing skills could intermix. Now, Agashi offers smaller quantities of made-to-order wear at faster turnaround times, allowing Christina to slow down and push her passion for teaching into the mix.

One focus about Agashi that never changed was sustainable fashion. While she acknowledges that not everyone has the financial ability to only buy made-to-order, Christina sees sustainable fashion as “buying with a purpose and purging clothes slower.” To avoid over-production, Christina focuses on creating made-to-order pieces and upcycles 90% of her fabric scrap pieces when sewing.

“My entire process is slow, intimate, and intentional. I’m grateful to have customers who invest in my custom pieces. They aren’t ordering for instant gratification, but rather an affordable luxury item they can cherish.”

Battrix Velvet Bralette (made 100 from upcycled velvet scraps)

Avoiding offers from manufacturers, the quality of her work and products is what Christina focuses on when creating her apparel. With each project feeling personal, she continues to place a lot of thought, time, and labor into each stitch of her pieces. Her dedication and message seep into her packaging with a handwritten thank you note, sustainable packaging, and self-sewn reusable gift bags.

While the shop’s plans for sales may have changed, her fashion design hasn’t! Those lovers of the gothic aesthetic and Halloween can find a piece they’ll love in Christina’s shop. Christina was inspired by cinema with darker themes like Addams Family Values, The Dark Crystal, and The Return to Oz. She found herself naturally drawn to the characters portrayed, connecting to the “weirdos” of the films. As someone who grew up having trouble making friends, finding a connection in these films inspired her to design fashion for grown-up sizes. With a variety of minimal designs, horror lovers like herself can easily wear fashion with spider webs and bat wings, celebrating their gothic ways!

Her style inspiration can also be pinpointed to vintage lingerie catalogs and old runway shots from McQueen, Mugler, and Gaultier. Victorian and Rococo fashion inspire Christina heavily over today’s fashion, feeling that the style now is only a repetition of the past.

“Agashi is for anyone who celebrates Halloween once a year or every day.”

It’s this niche design and theme that brings attention to Christina’s shop, where lovers of all Goth and horror can find fashion pieces that fit within the modern world. Thanks to social media, Christina has been able to build a community of over 100 thousand followers that have followed along the journey to where the business is today. Whether they’ve followed because they found interest in the shop, or her recent videos showcasing tips and tricks to sewing, she’s been able to utilize these platforms to grow her business and expand her brand awareness.

Ayumi Seifuku Classic Collection

As a business owner focused on social media for branding, she consistently posted content multiple times a week that revolved around her work and brand aesthetic. With Instagram being her platform, she’s focused on showcasing her work and her as a creator and behind-the-scenes looks. Focusing on building that connection between her customers and art is one of the reasons she’s been successful, with social media allowing her to connect with other creators, customers, and sewists.

While today’s social media can be more brutal to gain popularity on, Christina’s advice is to diversify your social media presence and focus on platforms that will help build your community. She recommends focusing on video content that’s popular right now and seeing how you can share behind the scene looks or process videos, as viewers will always love feeling like they can relate to you! Sites like Tiktok and YouTube are her favorites. This is thanks to their ease to use and the sewing communities that have been built.

Her new focus on sewing tutorials and tips is an excellent passion for Christina. When asked about her current sewing machine choices and what she would recommend for a new sewist, she reminded us that finding the perfect machine is just like dating!

“You want to know what you’re looking for and find the best machine to match your sewing needs and goals. And yes, just like dating, you will be disappointed with some machines.”

Her first tip for new sewists is to find a second-hand or vintage machine. Focusing on budget-friendly when entering a new hobby will allow you to get a taste of the craft while letting you hone your skills. A few basics, like a straight & zigzag stitch and a buttonhole feature, are perfect when starting off. Once you feel more comfortable or your skills begin outgrowing your machine, you can start focusing on upgrading and buying the suitable machine for you. For Christina, this answer comes in a rotation of 3 domestic sewing machines, 4 sergers, and 1 coverstitch machine, one being her trusty TL-2000Qi!

Greta Peignoir

It was in August 2020 when she searched for a “straight stitching beast,” focusing on the features wishlist, the budget, and the space, she chose the TL-2000Qi. Looking for industrial power that would fit her studio space, Christina loves its power and the finished quality of her projects when she creates on it, using it for her final seams on every order. Her dream goal? All industrial JUKI machines!

Beyond her tips and tricks for sewing, Christina also has advice for sewists out there who plan to open their small businesses. “Always invest in yourself and learn from your mistakes,” she says, encouraging those out there to keep investing in their passion and to never stop learning. While Christina earned a degree in Fashion Merchandising, she still acclaims herself as a self-taught sewist and designer. She encourages you to find your best path, whether it be fashion school or self-taught, and to learn at your own pace to enjoy the journey.

Focus on building relationships with those in your community, and choose it over the competition. Christina focuses on finding her own identity and experiments by not comparing herself to others. Because of this, she’s been able to plan the new future for Agashi. With a new effort to prioritize her mental health, Agashi will begin scaling down on made-to-order apparel and start focusing on teaching sewing next year. This will include DIY sewing kits for clothing and accessories and focus on those who don’t have many resources to learn sewing beside the internet.

“There is plenty of space for everyone to succeed together.”

Grateful to the community she’s been able to build and proud of how the brand has grown and evolved over the years, Christina and her brand Agashi will continue to flourish in the fashion industry! We can’t wait to see the new changes soon to come, and we’re excited to learn alongside her followers! If you love Halloween or want to learn new sewing tips and tricks, join us in following Christina’s journey below and wishing her a Happy Halloween!

Find Agashi and Christina below!

Agashishop.com

Instagram

Facebook

Etsy (Paper Bats)

Tiktok

Pinterest

Starting Your Sewing or Quilting Blog

Have you wanted to start your own blog? In today’s post, we’ll teach you steps you can follow for creating your own blog today. Businesses, creators, influencers, and more can all benefit from having a blog. With this channel being a great way to back up your expertise, share your story, and inspire others, having a blog is the perfect addition to any business. Follow along as we go over what a blog is, where you can start yours, and tips for designing and writing your post.

What is a blog?

A blog can be many things. For some, a blog is a journal documenting their journey. For others, it’s a great way to promote their business plans and products. Focused on a specific topic, a blog is more personal than a news outlet and pushes toward creators having a deeper connection with their audiences. Whether we’re sharing our passions, teaching others, hoping to make money, or a combination of all of them, blogging can be a fun and rewarding venture.

Anyone can start a blog! Readers enjoy blogs because of the different personal perspectives they gain. With an informal and conversational style at the forefront, you can write about various topics without needing to be an expert, just a new view. In addition, readers want to know about your experience with techniques, projects, products, and more.

Now that you know what a blog is let’s start planning yours!

Blogging is also a commitment. You can choose the regularity for your posting; some will do it weekly, some monthly, depending on your preference and audience. The aim should be consistent and create content that people want to see. Bloggers rarely see results when they first begin, but those who stick to the idea find themselves in a new community.

Step 1: Naming Your Blog

Your blog name is a small preview of what readers can expect to find on your page. First, think about what you want to call your blog. Yourname.com? Yourbussinessname.com? Maybe you want to title the blog something creative and different and use a wordplay name like “That’s Sew Susy.” Get fun and creative when creating a name so it can stand out! Once you’ve written down a few ideas, the next step is confirming the domain name is free.

You can check with multiple ways to confirm if the blog idea is free. Depending on what platform you use to create the blog, they’ll have a check system that will inform you whether or not the idea is available. Some tips to keep in mind if your idea is being used, try different extensions (like .org or .net), or add small fluff words like “my,” “a,” or “best” (SewSusy.com vs. ThatsSewSusy.com).

Remember, most blog sites will offer a free domain with their site on front; (wordpress.thatssewsusy.com.) If you’d like to have a domain with only the blog name, this will cost a monthly or yearly fee; depending on the platform’s options.

Step 2: Finding Your Niche and Topic

Let’s go through those blog ideas now! While there are a wide array of blogs out there, there are always readers looking for new perspectives. So when it comes to choosing the topic for your blog, pick a topic that allows you to consistently create content without burning out the idea. The more breathing space you allow yourself, the more content you’ll be able to create posts that readers are interested in.

For example, if we’re creating a quilting blog, we don’t focus on only sharing patterns. Instead, by covering cover quilting as a whole and including pieces like projects, behind-the-scenes, how-to’s, personal messages, and more, readers get personal while learning new ways to approach their interests.

Keep in mind that blogs can often lead to opportunities for monetization. Whether through advertisements or connecting the blog to an e-shop, you want the message to align with your future goals. Just like creating videos for YouTube, or content for social media, look for what solutions and perspectives your blog can offer that differ from others out there.

Step 3: Hosting Your Blog

Once you’ve settled on the blog’s name and general topic, it’s time to research host sites. To fully create a blog online, you’ll need a hosting program and blogging program; luckily, these two programs usually come in a package deal.

The host is the website that readers will access. All your blogs will be stored and organized according to tags and design. On the other hand, the blog software is where you’ll write up and design the content for readers.

Below are 3 recommendations for hosting and building your blog. Each offers package deals that allow you to host and create your blog in one location.

WordPress.com: Designed to let you build your blog quickly, WordPress allows users to upload and manage media, text, blog posts, and eCommerce products online. Completely free and open to anyone who wishes to download the program, WordPress is both popular and influential.

Completely hosted by Automattic, bloggers only need to choose a free or paid plan and the domain. All other aspects of hosting are handled by Automattic and WordPress directly. Easy to use and set up, WordPress offers creators a variety of template designs that can be edited to fit their theme and topic. You can also include plug-ins for an eCommerce store, blogs, social media channels, and more.

There are multiple payment plan options, ranging from freelance bloggers to businesses requiring more storage and freedom in design and coding. Powerful, WordPress is known for being one of the top blog sites for creators.

Wix.com: Wix offers accessible design features and free or paid subscriptions for your site. In addition, you can easily add in media content like videos, photos, and PDFs, as well as a variety of applications that can interwork into the blog. In this case, you can easily add applications for e-shops, reservations, and so much more.

Like WordPress, Wix offers blog creators an opportunity to host and build their blog on one site. In addition, their site will offer full technical support, even on free accounts, and has a beautiful SEO system to help you get your blog up on search platforms.

Squarespace.com: Stylish and easy to edit, Squarespace is comparable to WordPress for its power and popularity. Offering over 140 template designs for your blog, Squarespace focuses on keeping a clean design for their sites, adapting the screen size for tablet and phone users on its own. Like the two programs stated above, users can host and create their blogs on one site.

The only cons of working with Wix is that larger websites exceeding 50 individual pages experience slow loading or difficulty. You’ll need to look for alternatives like WordPress for a more prominent website host.

Squarespace offers bloggers the opportunity to create teams with multi-author functionalities, engage readers with their comment features, and allows you to easily organize and schedule your blog posts. Thanks to their Squarespace application for bloggers, you can also blog on the go! With a larger page limit than Wix, hosting up to 400 pages while containing excellent resolution and speed, Squarespace can be a great alternative to WordPress for your website needs.

The cons of working with Squarespace are that you can’t create a large assortment of menu items, as this will slow to load down, and all save when editing automatically publishes onto the website in real-time.

Once you’ve decided on your host and blog site, you can begin designing! Look for designs that relate to your topic and theme while offering easy navigation for readers and a clean look. All programs we’ve recommended above come with built-in templates that can be edited and improved according to your needs.

Step 4: Writing a Blog and Publishing

Let’s begin with setting the site up and creating the content readers should view when they first find your blog. Some basics to set up on your blog are the about page, contact page, and any other page readers should browse with your focus.

Other items you can add to the site include a photo of yourself, a logo, images, a comment section, your social media channels, and other applications to which you’d like readers to have direct links. Your blog represents yourself and the topic you’ve chosen, so make sure to have fun designing and personalizing the site!

Moving on to the blogs themselves, focus on being informative and engaging! Our top recommendation for bloggers is to create a supply of idea topics and plan ahead to ensure you’re always on track for posting. Remember, consistency is what builds your blog following. Using a calendar or spreadsheet is perfect for keeping those ideas organized and will help the creative process go smoother.

When you write your blog, there are key aspects you should focus on like post titles, engaging and lengthy information, original content, and editing. No matter what topic you focus on, having an intriguing article title will bring a reader’s attention. Likewise, having engaging and informative information in your article while keeping it personal and including your perspectives will keep readers coming back.

Need ideas for your blog post? View below for posts you can include in your schedule.

  • Curated content: Focusing on your niche, these blog posts gather valuable pieces of information that readers are interested in learning about.
  • Topical content: stay in touch with current events and topics in your niche! Readers will enjoy seeing your perspective on current happenings in your community.
  • Visual content: Incorporate photos, videos, sound clips, and more to engage readers beyond reading.
  • Feature pieces: Interview popular creators and businesses in your niche! Networking and spotlighting others in your community is a great way to meet new friends and bring new readers to your site that are in the interviewee’s community. 
  • Evergreen content: answer your blog posts’ questions and educate readers on your niche topics.
  • Interactive content: Countdowns, quizzes, word finds, giveaways, and so much more will encourage audiences to interact with your site and blog. In doing so, they’ll help your SEO and give you a better insight into who your readers are.

Step 5: Getting Your Blog Out There

Now that your blog is running let’s get some readers! The first step is creating a plan to promote your blog. Then, follow along as we go over strategies you can implement to start getting your blog out there.

  • Word of Mouth: Contact your friends, family members, and colleagues to tell them about your new blog! By asking them to visit, read and follow, you’ll begin getting your site out there and raising awareness. Encourage them to share your blog posts, and don’t forget to thank them!
  • Social Media: Whether you use your personal page, or create a business solely for the blog, getting your blog link onto top social sites like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest is the place to start. Post relevant photos, videos, and announcements for your blog on these sites to bring attention to your brand and writing. Asking friends and family members to share your profile and links will multiply your reach and help you gain that following you’re looking for.

Another significant aspect of social media is networking and using their search systems to your advantage! Reach out to other members of your niche, and use notions like hashtags and profile tags, to raise your posts on the algorithms.

  • Interacting with other creators: One way to create a name for yourself in a community is by interacting with other creators’ content. Leave comments, like their posts, re-share and more to begin building those connections within the community.

When you build these connections, you have a higher chance of broadening your audience and the opportunity to speak with others in your niche. In addition, this is an opportunity to create bonds leading to future collaborations and new projects.

  • Interacting with your readers: Let them know you care and interact with them! Whether liking their posts, replying to comments, or discussing your blog topics, readers like to know the author cares about their community.
  • Post regularly and keep in contact: Consistency is vital when building your blog. So create that calendar we mentioned and follow a routine for posting. This will keep readers engaged and waiting for a new post each time. Also, don’t forget to create an email list! This way, you can keep in direct contact with your readers and keep them updated when new posts or news about your brand are happening.

Step 6: Enjoy Your Blog!

Whether you created this blog for your small business, or your hobbies and passions, remember to enjoy the creative process! While building your audience at first can be difficult, remember these projects take time. So post regularly, engage with your community, plan ahead, and you’ll begin seeing your audience and opportunities grow.

Focus on creating content you’re proud of; remember, this project can be a stepping stone to new opportunities!