Belle of the blog
|From simple plan to stand-alone success, BrightonTheDay.com inspires readers with everyday fashion ideas|
What do you get when you combine a number-crunching budding accountant with the wide world of website design and the colorful field of fashion? In the case of BrightonTheDay.com, you get a sharp-dressed fashion blog that's attracting scores of readers, advertisers and collaborators from all over the country.
Recent University of Texas graduate Brighton Keller launched the blog in December 2011 with the primary purpose of promoting the new shoe and handbag collections created by her mother, designer Dee Keller. But Brighton also had a more self-gratifying motive.
“I am surprisingly very enthused by anything and everything regarding computers,” explains the 22-year-old. “When I took my first computer science class, I was shocked by how much I enjoyed learning all the ins and outs of the digital world.”
Brighton even considered majoring in a computer-related field at UT before ultimately choosing accounting. So when her mother's new line was launched, a fashion blog seemed a perfect platform to exercise her techie side.
She mastered the behind-the-scenes work by tapping into some unexpected resources, from UT professors and new friends at the Apple store to YouTube tutorial videos and a few “extremely helpful buddies in several nerdy coding forums and chats,” Brighton confides. The result is a polished and well-put-together site that belies its author's level of experience in coding and graphic design.
Since the inception of her blog, Brighton, who has always “loved pretty clothes,” has been a prolific poster, publishing her musings on “fashion, life and other randoms” virtually every single day. It's an ambitious schedule, especially considering that she has simultaneously been both working part-time and spending several hours a day studying for the various parts of the CPA exam. She manages her responsibilities by multitasking.
“I never do an entire post in one day,” she says. “I always have six or seven drafts ongoing and work on them at different times. That way, I never feel the pressure of having to spend time working on the blog when I don't want to.”
In its short life, BrightonTheDay.com has already become a source of revenue through advertisers and collaborations with brands that contact Brighton to wear their pieces in her “outfit posts,” in which she poses in ensembles she pulls together herself.
“I think that people of all ages like to see how to put ordinary clothing into action in different and interesting ways,” she says. “It's been said that I have a 'girl-next-door' appeal, and people seem to like it because it's realistic, practical and often a look that most people could emulate.”
Featured outfits often combine new pieces with items from Brighton's own closet and, of course, Dee Keller shoes and bags, attracting more interest in the brand from “people who would otherwise have never heard of it.” It's a happy result for Brighton, who says she gets her tenacious desire to learn and succeed from her mother. “She gives everything her all and works harder than anyone I know,” Brighton says. “She has the ability not only to dream up fresh and original ideas and designs but also to translate them into an extraordinary reality.”
Besides posting about pretty things, Brighton says she hopes her blog has a bigger purpose as a place where readers can turn for general good vibes about everyday life.
“I like to think that it will inspire and cultivate positive and encouraging energy,” she says. “Sometimes merely being able to relate to other people is just the motivation someone needs to persevere through his or her current obstacles.”
Even as she moves to New Orleans for a job with the audit staff of PricewaterhouseCoopers this fall, Brighton is determined to continue blogging regularly and even to “hire a few interns” to help with the workload.
“All I can do is keep doing what I'm doing and hope that people continue to enjoy it and spread the word,” she says. “At the end of the day, it's nice to have an outlet to filter all my creative energy into something that others can enjoy.”
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