Welcome to the new and improved A Well Crafted Party

A Well Crafted Party Blog Magazine Layout 2014

I’ve been blogging at A Well Crafted Party for nearly five years now and it has gone through its fair share of change as my life changed along with it.

Content over the past few years

This little blog started as a way to share my DIY party ideas and has morphed into a community where I share everything from recipes to updates on how life is with my toddler. It went from a very niche blog to a wide array of topics. Sometimes, the wide array of topics ended up hurting the overall feeling of the site and didn’t allow for readers to get to know me and my blog the way I’d prefer. Sometimes it allowed for content I never thought I’d possibly have the opportunity to share and the blog has benefited from that.

I brought in guest bloggers often… sometimes to the delight of readers and sometimes, not-so-much. My husband even started his own series called “A Well Crafted Man” but soon slowed on his postings.

The blog has had its highs and its lows. There have been times where I’ve had so much content and TIME to share that I was posting nearly a dozen posts a week. There have been weeks of silence on the blog.

Design over the past few years

Very first blog banner for A Well Crafted Party
This was my first attempt at a blog banner in 2010 when my blog began. EEK.
Evolution of Blog Design A Well Crafted Party
Professionally designed blogger blog layout circa 2011
Evolution of Blog Design A Well Crafted Party
After a brief stint in purple on my WordPress site I moved over to my current color scheme. This layout lasted about a year.
A Well Crafted Party Blog Magazine Layout 2014
A Well Crafted Party Blog Design 2013-2015

The design started as a very basic blogger setup with a terrible pixelated header, to professionally designed, to WordPress continuous blog format to a WordPress magazine layout. The logo started out as a crude purple scripted logo all the way to the current clean fonts with elements of blues, greens and yellows.

Mission over the past few years

My mission started as sharing unique party ideas for celebrating life on a budget. It gradually morphed into sharing unique ideas and stories about celebrating life and ways to celebrate moments on a budget. I still feel strongly about both of those missions, I just want to make sure I’m living up to it in my posts.

Life over the past few years

All of these changes almost directly correlate with the changes in my life. When I started I was a part of a married couple with a non-creative job craving a creative outlet as a hobby. I increased my content schedule and updated the blog look as people began to take notice of that little hobby. Then all of the sudden I was pregnant and about to have a son. I stopped throwing as many parties and wanted to start sharing more about life. That is when I made the switch to a lifestyle blog rather than a parties and event blog. When I became a work-at-home mom picking up freelancing jobs I shifted A Well Crafted Party into a career blog, making “career blogger” moves such as moving to WordPress and increasing my content schedule. When I was sharing so much content in a variety of topics I made the move to a magazine style layout. Then I got a full-time, out of the home job that took me away from this little space I had created.

Evolution of Blog Design A Well Crafted Party
Photo by Moments by Macey

What has changed?

Everything. Well, almost everything.

I tried ( I really, really tried) to keep up with a more consistent and fruitful schedule of posts in the many topics that I like to post about. I tried taking the time to comment on other people’s blogs, keep up with all the social media, reply to every comment on this site. At some point I realized that I just can’t do it all, no matter how much I want to! One area of responsibility would be going really well, and I’d be failing at so many other areas. So… that leads me to my new view of A Well Crafted Party.

Celebrate Every Day - Mission Behind A Well Crafted Party
Photo by Moments by Macey

A Well Crafted Party’s Mission

I’ve been thinking a lot about my blog’s mission. I mean, why in the world am I spending my time and energy brining my ideas to this little side of the internet? Some bloggers make bank on  their work and I support them in that endeavor. However, with my focus on my full-time job, this blog is more of a hobby than a career. It needs to be something that I am passionate about if it is going to continue.

In all of my reflection on what I am truly passionate about and WHY I started the blog to begin with I came up with a simple mission statement that I feel I can get behind in everything I do and which supports my personal goals.

A Well Crafted Party is a blog where I celebrate life. My tagline is ‘Life is a Party—Celebrate!’ because I believe that there is something in every day that is worth celebrating and something within every person that deserves to be celebrated. My mission is to explain, inspire and educate others in celebrating the everyday.

A Well Crafted Party’s Content

Honestly, this is the hardest part for me… I want this blog to be a true reflection of myself, even if it is just the little bits of me and my family that I wish to share. My content will support my blog’s mission. I aim to post three times a week— currently aiming for Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday if you are someone who prefers to just check in on posting days rather than following along via a blog reader or social media. I will be posting my usual array of parties, recipes and cocktails. I will also continue to occasionally write about blogging, curvy fashion, non-fussy beauty and family. Though, every post will keep my mission in mind.

Evolution of Blog Design with A Well Crafted Party
Refreshed Blog Design circa 2015

A Well Crafted Party’s New Design

I wanted to bring elements of what I have to celebrate every day to the blog in my refreshed blog design. Macey from Moments by Macey took me and the family out to take the images that I’ve shared in the design. I plan on changing up the photos throughout the seasons, but for now it is exactly what I wanted to share with my new mission. I also went with a cleaner and easier to read logo design. Because I am no longer posting several times throughout the week the magazine layout no longer worked for my blog. I’ve reverted to a more traditional blog layout using the Master Theme from Mojo Themes. As I find time I am making my landing pages even more clean and easy to navigate so it is easy to peruse the many posts that the blog contains. The A Well Crafted Pantry page is already up and working and I couldn’t be happier!

The Future of A Well Crafted Party

Goodness, who knows!? I’m sure it is going to continue to change along with me and my life. I love that I get the opportunity to look back and track my changes through a series of posts and photos. Just like life there are moments of embarrassment and pride. I do hope that I continue to live up to my mission in the future of this blog. I also plan to really strive to be a more consistent blogger. Finally, I have a project up my sleeve that speaks to my mission more than anything I’ve ever done before. I’m so excited to bring share it in March and get the ball rolling on a year long effort!

Thank you for reading A Well Crafted Party. It means a lot to me that you not only stop by these pages, but that you take the time to take it all in. I’d love to know…

What do you think of the new design and mission? What would you like to see more of (or less of) in future posts?

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Jenni
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Jenni is a freelance writer and media assistant based in Portland, OR. A Well Crafted Party is a blog about all the little things to celebrate in life. Follow Jenni or A Well Crafted Party with BlogLovin, RSS feed, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest.
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Comments

  1. First off, I love the new blog design, Jenni! As for this post, I think you hit on a number of very important points that affect most bloggers at one time or another. Basically, things change, and with it, so does our focus. When that happens, it is so helpful (and perhaps even necessary) to sit down, take stock and really define who and what you want to be, and how you will translate that to your readers. Really great post on a number of levels. Thanks for your candor, and I look forward to your celebrations to come!
    Renée ♥ The Good Hearted Woman recently posted…The Skinnytaste Cookbook & Chicken Cordon Bleu Meatballs Recipe {Review & Giveaway}My Profile

    1. Jenni
      • Jenni
      • February 17, 2015
      Reply

      Thanks so much for reading the post! I felt like it was REALLY long while writing it, but also completely what I wanted to say. Hahaha, I am glad I edited it though because it was about three scrolls longer! YIKES. 🙂

    • Pech
    • February 10, 2015
    Reply

    I love the design that supports you changing out the image – how fun! Where did you find such a pretty wall to pose with those yellow balloons to keep with your blue white and yellow theme 😀 ?!!
    Pech recently posted…Breakfast at Della’s Kitchen in the DelanoMy Profile

    1. Jenni
      • Jenni
      • February 17, 2015
      Reply

      Thank you! Macey found the wall across the street from the Waffle Window near burnside. It was just perfect!

  2. Reply

    Loving how this looks!!! Congrats on a successful design change. It’s amazing!

    1. Jenni
      • Jenni
      • February 17, 2015
      Reply

      Thanks so much Rachel! I still feel like there are tweaks, but overall I’m really excited about the change.

  3. Reply

    I love the new design and your mission! Everyday should be celebrated! I can’t wait to see what you have in store. 🙂

    1. Jenni
      • Jenni
      • February 17, 2015
      Reply

      Thank you! I hope to keep consistent. That has always been my struggle!

  4. Reply

    A mission statement can be so important in enacting your goals. Yours is a great one! Perfect for an inspiring and pretty blog with a variety of content.

    I think all your designs have been nice, even the first banner! =)
    Create/Enjoy recently posted…Homemade coconut honey chocolate truffle recipeMy Profile

    1. Jenni
      • Jenni
      • February 17, 2015
      Reply

      Hahaha- thanks. I was so proud of that first banner when I first made it. Now I sort of cringe when I look at it. I guess our skill grows with practice!

  5. Reply

    Congrats! I’m so excited for you! I have made a variety of changes over the past 8 years of blogging and my blog has changed names and missions as my life and interest changed. I love your new mission and look forward to see how your blog develops and evolves.
    Lindsay Ingalls recently posted…January Favorites | Olive Oil, Tea, Beauty + GiveawayMy Profile

    1. Jenni
      • Jenni
      • February 17, 2015
      Reply

      Thank you! Man, 8 years! I bet it has changed a lot over that period of time. I look forward to seeing what my blog will be like in three more years and all of the stories I’ve been able to share. Have you thought about printing off your earlier blog posts into books for saving? I’ve been playing around with the idea for my own site. I feel like it would feel more permanent than the web. If that is even possible!

  6. Reply

    i really appreciate hearing your thoughts and process on your blog over the years. Mine has been the same, it’s almost five years old and has morphed in focus through the years. I’m still working on defining my mission. It’s helpful to hear about yours. Ps. New design and pics look great!

    1. Jenni
      • Jenni
      • February 17, 2015
      Reply

      thank you so much! I’ve really enjoyed reading your blog and often refer to it when I’m looking to discover something new in Portland. I think a mission around your desire to highlight the treasures, both edible and beyond, of home (wherever your home may be in that moment- your beyond Portland series is so good!) would fit well with my favorite work on your site! Good luck!

  7. Reply

    Your new theme and color scheme are beautiful. Im still working on a mission statement for my new-ish and neglected blog. I need some guidelines for both the blog and myself. I feel like im all over the place , still trying to get things smoothed out.

    1. Jenni
      • Jenni
      • February 17, 2015
      Reply

      Thank you so much! I think that finding a specific mission statement was the hardest part for me. I wanted it to be perfect and fit all of my different content. But, later I realized that the mission needs to be more then about content or my blog, but more about WHY I’m doing the blog in the first place. Sometimes my content won’t obviously fit the mission, but for me, if I’m taking the time to show others things to celebrate in their own lives, or taking the time to actually celebrate the people/moments in my own life, then I’ll still be ‘on mission.’ Good luck finding your mission. The journey is part of the fun!

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