interview with brittni of papernstitch

how can i reach more people with my blog?
how can i make people write more comments?
am i posting about the right things?
am i going the right way to make my blog grow?

well… do you have any of these in your head? if you have a blog… considered quite a small one… you probably do. i know i do. {… a place for twiggs} is growing, but there are so many doubts in my head. and having several blogger friends around the world… i think that these doubts do not live just in my head.

so… i thought it would be interesting to ask some of well-known bloggers for their perspective. do you want to know more? follow me… this way, please. {blogging… by bloggers} will be a five interviews edition that will be published every day this week. so i am thinking that you should relax for a while and read all these words.

our first guest… brittni mehlhoff from {papernstitch}.

“hi! i’m brittni mehlhoff and i am the editor and owner of papernstitch the blog and papernstitch the exhibition site. i started this blog in july of 2008 to keep myself inspired and record the things that i found to be most interesting.”

so, in order to make this organized, let us first talk about your personal experience…

1. do you remember the first day you blogged? what did you have in mind?
i had to go back through my archives on this one because its been so long, i couldn’t remember. my very first post was about accent walls and how my fiance at the time (who is now my husband) was trying to convince me that we needed something similar in our office/studio. i imagine i didn’t have much more in mind at the time than just relating my everyday life to cool things i had found in internet land. things have changed quite a bit since that first post two and a half years ago. but then again, in some ways, things have stayed the same.

2. what does your blog represents for you? how many hours it represents on a daily basis?
gosh it represents so many things. i feel very connected to the blog because i often times share things about my own life, things that i make, and occasionally give advice (or seek advice). of course, i also share what’s going on with the exhibition site, promoting my exhibitors and that kind of thing. promoting other people’s work, specifically in the handmade community, is hugely important to me. and the blog is a big part of that.

usually i spend around four or five hours writing posts and researching each day (about half of my workday). sometimes more and occasionally less, depending on the day. the rest of my day is spent on the exhibition site.

3. when you started to wish to make it grow in a really strong way, what strategies did work for your blog?
i think the thing that has helped me most has definitely been guest blogging. i’ve done quite a few one-offs on much larger sites and blogs than my own (like Decor8, Whip Up and Design Sponge), which helps. But i also write regular posts as a weekly contributor for a handful (four others currently) of like-minded blogs as well. this has helped attract readers from other blogs and has definitely helped grow readership at a faster pace.

4. since which moment you believed that your blog was a successful one?
this is a very interesting question because success is defined in so many ways. for me, community is really important. so, i guess when i started getting regular comments on posts and a hefty stream of emails regarding the blog, that was a mark of success. a small one. but a success none the less. of course, being featured in magazines and being approached to submit work for books doesn’t hurt either. and that has certainly been a huge honor, and something that would fall into the success category in my mind.

now… let us think about other blogs and blogging…

1. if there was a main rule about blog etiquette, what would it be?
always give credit where credit is due. this has become an issue on quite a few blogs lately: not properly crediting the source- not just with the original source, but with a secondary source as well, if that applies. for example, if you find inspiration for your next post on someone else’s blog or site, its perfectly alright. but be sure to give proper credit with a link back whenever possible. a simple ‘found via [insert blog name here]’ added to your post with a link is just fine. tt doesn’t have to be difficult.

the other etiquette rule i have would be to say thank you. people like other people who are grateful. and guess what? bloggers are people. so, if you receive a write up on someone else’s blog, reach out and say thanks. let that person know that you appreciate the mention (they are giving you free press after all). again, it doesn’t have to be a big deal. just a simple thanks via email or even a note in the comments section of the post will work, if you don’t have the blogger’s email address. trust me, it goes a long way.

2. publishing a story every day… main rule towards success or not at all?
besides trying to maintain consistency with your content, i think my main rule (at least where sanity is concerned) would be to schedule things ahead of time as much as possible. i should probably also say that you don’t want to schedule things too far ahead because you want to remain current. but a day or two ahead for scheduling posts is always nice, especially when you are posting everyday or more than once a day. i would also recommend pacing yourself, so you don’t get burnt out. this becomes more and more important as time goes on.

3. when you read a blog, what is “that” thing that makes you click on “add a comment”?
if something the author says resonates with me, i’ll usually comment. and often times, when a question is posted i feel prompted to answer with a comment as well.

4. what does your eye catch when you are searching the web and you find a new blog?
strong, well-developed content. followed closely by good design (layout / format of the blog).

well… what do you think? i can tell you that every time i received each of these answers by the fabulous bloggers invited, i stopped doing what i was doing and read them carefully, because they would carry such wisdom… and in this world, one thing we can never forget is that we can always learn something from someone else. and with these series… i truly hope to learn and of course, to share some of this knowledge so that you, my friends, can also learn.

thank you so much, brittni… for the second time in this blog as a guest… always so kind in accpeting my humble invitations! and you my friends, what do you think about these interviews? tomorrow we shall have another great lady… victoria smith from {sfgirlbybay}. curious? i am! see you tomorrow! and have a delicious day, sweet readers!



  1. Thank you so much, this is so helpful for a "newbie" :) I'll be back each day !

  2. I enjoyed reading this post and I look forward to the rest of the week!

  3. Thanks for these interview, I'm looking very much forward to read the others. I'm all ears for advice on blogging!

  4. Thank you for these interviews, I'm looking so much forward to read the next ones. I'm all ears about advice for blogging.

  5. This is a great series idea. I have a relatively new blog as well and these tips are oh so helpful! I look forward to reading tomorrows as well! :)

  6. This is such a great idea. I greatly appreciate this interview and thoroughly enjoyed the content as I sat down and read it with a new cup of tea.

    This is a great way to support and inspire our blogging community, thanks and I look forward to future interviews.

    Happy Monday,

  7. Great interview Claudia! very very interesting!!! i really love it!
    (Tomo nota de todos estos consejos, aunque para mi el tiempo es limitado y creo que es el factor fundamental)

  8. This is great! Thanks so much. I will definitely be back to read the rest of the series.

  9. Excellent gust posts with tips I will take with me. Your blog is airy and lovely. I must follow for more inspiration :)

  10. Oh thank you both of you..I LOVED reading this!!! It´s very inspirational to get some insider info from a well known blogger..yay!

    I will stop by to read everything the next couple of days :-)

    I have been blogging for about 6 month, but I still fel like a newbie…there is so much to think about and learn when blogging.

    Thanks lovely ladies for sharing this :-)

  11. LOVE this idea! I will most undoubtedly be back to read the rest of the interviews! Thanks so much for doing this!!!

  12. I found your blog via Papernstitch, which I am sure I came across via a link in someone else's blog (although I can't remember now). Its great the way the blogging community works. I've only been blogging a couple of months but I already get so much out of it! Thanks for sharing these interviews, I'm adding you into my reader now so I don't miss the rest of the week!


  13. Hello to both of you! Brittni, this is a great post. Lots of bits to chew on, especially as I prep for my new site/blog. Very timely!

    And hi Twiggs! I'm happy to meet your blog, I'll be checking back in regularly now :)

  14. Great idea twiggs thanks for sharing I will be back to read the others. Have a good week honey ax

  15. Thank you so much for all the comments here! I am really thrilled to hear that my tips were helpful to some of you. Thanks again Claudia for asking me to be a part of this. :) And a little extra special hello to Mayi and Brittany. You girls rock!

  16. Wow, such a great and informative interview! I'm going to read over it again when my house is quiet. Brittni is an inspiration and so are YOU, Twiggs. :)

  17. this interview was really interesting and now i can't wait to read more :) thanks for sharing!

  18. wow. This was such a treat! Thank you so much to Brittni for taking the time to give us so much insight! I'm a huge fan of papernstitch so this was an extra special treat!

  19. hello there to you all!! whow… you just made my day! i was imagining that this might be a good idea, but was not expecting such positive feedback! thank you so much for coming and reading and above all, taking the time to write your sweet thoughts about this! i am so happyyyyyy! :) welcome to all of you new here… and welcome back to all my friends!! :)

  20. What a great post. I will be back to see what else you post for the rest of this series!

  21. Great interview with Brittni! The blogging world has been such a wonderful treasure for me…such a way to find new artists and like-minded people and a way for me to connect with others! Reading the experience and background of other successful bloggers is always helpful…and I'm a big fan of Brittni and Papernstitch. Can't wait to see more!

  22. Compliments to Twiggs for asking so many clever questions and for Brittni for sharing your thoughts. It inspired me a lot.

  23. Great post Brittni- thank you for these thoughts and for sharing your experience- I struggle with how time consuming the whole blogging world is, but then again life is time consuming too-right?XX

  24. great post brittni and i'm glad you pointed out that success is defined in many different ways. i think it's important to remember especially when describing a series with the word "popularity" which immediately makes my stomach hurt as i'm instantly transported to the terrors of high school!

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  29. I’ve just come across this interview and it’s great – I’m a new blogger and it is so interesting to read such great advice. Thank you! (I’m off to read the other four interviews now!)

  30. Great interview. Just found your site, love it! I am a counselor/therapist who has been blogging since 2007 for my practice, but enjoy it so much that I am seeking to make it more. I feel inspired by you, (both of you!) thank you!

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