January is that time of the year, as life coach Matthew Hussey puts it, “January is like the first Monday, the way you act on Monday sets the course for the rest of the days”. And this January, Five Question Series is going to be nothing short of an adrenaline-filling overdose of inspiration. Are you ready for the second, inspiring story?
If there’s one thing I have learned from last year, it’s the fact that side hustle is a legit answer to everyday survival. Side hustling first surfaced in my dictionary when I interviewed a friend last year: “I’m feeling pulled towards pursuing a ‘side hustle’ and putting consistent time and effort into growing an idea into a viable business. I absolutely love the notion of having full control over every detail that leads to the ultimate success (or failure) of a business’s venture, and someday not having to rely on anybody else to provide me with an income.”
Krystin Lee is a side-hustler and a very successful one. Founder of Suburban Faux-Pas, Lee is Toronto-based lifestyle blogger and Social Media Director.
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A sneak peek into a hectic morning around the house. From racing down the stairs, to checking emails while adjusting a heel, I'm constantly multitasking. The only ah-ha moment is that first sip of coffee before I get on with my day. I #AddDelight with a spoonful of @internationaldelightca to get my day going! #ad 🎥: @cameron.st.visual.storytelling
While I had always pictured myself as a city girl post-graduation, I followed my husband out to the ‘burbs and decided to call it home. Unfortunately, my city style never left which often seems to perplex neighbors who question why taking out the trash, grocery shopping or post office runs require an ensemble. Needless to say, my blog is my personal outlet to relate to city slickers and suburban stylistas alike.
To say her blog is picturesque would not be an understatement… in fact, Lee’s blog is of a level one expects from a full-time blogger; not a full-time working professional side hustling as a blogger. Storytelling, as it turns out, is a thing of beauty, and when it comes to Lee’s work, the beauty lies in not just attention to details, but also this sense of awe that comes from work executed straight from the heart.
Q1. From a personal and professional perspective, what’s your vision for 2018?
From a professional perspective, focusing on my full-time career. I’ve recently been promoted to Social Media Director at my agency, Midfield, and have been tasked with growing our department in team members and in acquiring more accounts. For the blog, we’re looking at hopefully creating more interactive content from videos to stop motion creative and more. And with all that, my personal goal is to take a vacation before the end of the year with no cell phone or laptop. Even if the vacation is for 2 days, it’s a goal of mine to truly disconnect for a few days without the stress or impact of social media.
Q2. What has been your favorite post from 2017?
It wasn’t much of a post but hosting a Q&A on Instagram was a big push for me in 2017. I’ve often struggled with how much of my personal life I share on the blog and Instagram stories was a bit of a love/hate platform for me. I decided to tackle 10 popular questions and was met with so much support from readers and encouragement to do more than I definitely felt at ease and a comfort in sharing more.
Q3. Since the blog launch in 2012, what has been the biggest up and, subsequent, down?
I think the biggest ‘up’ would be the experiences we’ve been a part of through this journey. From traveling to Paris with Armani to NYC for Fashion Week and partnering with brands such as American Express, Nordstrom, L’Oreal, Saks Fifth Avenue and more—this journey is constantly filled with pinch-me moments. I think the downside of this industry is also the fear of the unknown. Where will Instagram be by the end of 2018? Is the influencer realm a sustainable business model? Questions like this continue to rest at the forefront of my mind and, at times, can be a cause for concern. At the same time, this concern also helps drive even stronger content and pushes the team to want to outperform on a consistent basis.
Q4. What are your five go-to tips to stay focused and giving your best to both jobs?
I’ve always been transparent that juggling both careers is not an easy feat. These are my tips to keep focused on your deliverables and the tasks at hand:
Knowing your limit: Since my husband (photographer) and I both work full-time, we have to squeeze most of our content creation into weekends or early morning shoots before work. Anything more than this and it just becomes too much to handle or the output suffers.
Time Management: You probably expected to hear this one but it’s so true. I have a paperback agenda I keep on me at all times (I refuse to rely on my cell phone) and it’s my go-to for scheduling a blog, work, and personal commitments.
Editorial Calendar Planning: Too often we find ourselves hitting a wall for content when it comes to the blog. By planning our content out a month in advance, it’s easier to hit any deadlines for brands we’ve committed to.
Transparency: I think the reason my office is so understanding of the commitments that come with the blog is because of the transparency I’ve always presented with projects and commitments.
Having an outlet: Whether it’s takeout, Netflix, and wine on a Friday night, routine facials or massages or going to your favorite workout class—find something you love and stick to it on a regular basis.
Q5. Each and every post on Suburban Faux-Pas looks flawless. What’s the kind of planning that goes into producing such perfectly crafted photos?
My husband and I try to plan out our locations in advance of heading out to shoot. We try to incorporate colors of the outfit into the backdrop and are also mindful of the time we have to shoot. As for editing, I have a select number of presets I’ve created which tend to work with the overall brand and will apply these to most photos to create a consistent look and feel. Following the editing process, you then have to load the content into your publishing platform and include any notable links or supportive copy. I would say from pre-planning to publishing, each post takes about 4-5 hours to create and execute.
Born and raised in India, Anisha Dhiman moved to Toronto to study Publishing and then Lifestyle Media at Centennial College. Writer, social media strategist and content creator, Anisha is the founder of Five Question Series, where she profiles people… you guessed it, by asking five questions. In her free time, she enjoys reading and trolling people with puppy GIFs and memes. Her only phobia? Losing her sight, but staring at the screen all day long doesn’t help much.