Name: Dina Gideon. (That is my maiden name, but I use it for all internet profiles.)
Where: Northern Virginia. Been here since 1985. Love it. Miss it way back when it was slower, but nice to be part of a bigger community that has so much to offer.
Born in CA, spent time there and in Germany, with a small stint in England in college. But for the most part, VA is my home.
For Fun: Parenting three gorgeous children (boy girl boy), sewing up a storm (regularly since 2013), enjoying personal style (especially Boden, J. Crew, Anthropologie, Garnet Hill, and Madewell), traveling, eating out, being fully active in a Catholic community, and swimming.
Daily Life: Way too many runs to the grocery store (good gracious, Harris Teeter should pay me since I talk about them so much), way too many school runs, and quite a bit of cleaning up after gorgeous children.
1. OOTD: outfit of the day
2. Review: written review with photos of a clothing item from a company
3. Made by Me File: written review with photos of a sewing project I made
4. BWRR: Boden Weekly Review Roundup
5. IRL: In Real Life
6. Ease of Wear: How comfortable an outfit is for the weather, occasion, and on me (used in ootd posts)
7. Cool Factor: How "cool" I felt wearing outfit (in ootd post)*
*I used to be harder on myself in the cool factor UNTIL one of my good friends asked me why I was so hard on myself. She said she really liked most of my outfits and thought my unnecessarily harsh ratings were out of line. And then a few blog friends agreed with her so I changed up the way I score myself. I don't give myself high marks because I think I look that cool compared to everyone else, I give myself high marks when I feel cool compared to me. I hope that makes sense.
I use the above terms when creating titles for my blog posts. If you are a sewing friend and only want to see sewing projects, please do enjoy my "Made by Me" posts. If you are a style friend, my "ootd" posts are probably for you. If you enjoy shopping, my "Review" posts are your friends. If you love Boden, the BWRR posts are for you. Of course, some of you will enjoy it all! Whatever works for you, works for me, but DO remember, I am not a one-trick pony here. I never intended this blog to be just sewing, just ootd, or just Boden. :-)
Blog History (with info on affiliations):
I decided to start this blog all the way back in January of 2009. My daughter was not even six months old, and my eldest boy was not even two. My third baby was born in March 2012.
I initially planned for it to be more of a parenting/lifestyle/personal style blog, but slowly, after a year or so, I found that I preferred writing about personal style and shopping. So by early 2010, my blog became more firmly situated in the fashion blogging world, even though I still wrote and showed off photos of my children and my life.
By early 2011, I noticed that a lot of people were writing me with questions about a clothing brand I wore a lot of, Boden. From the very start of this blog I featured a lot of clothing in my outfit of the day posts (ootd) that were Boden, and because most Americans and Canadians at that point had not heard of this brand, they were turning to me asking for help in choosing sizes, colors, styles, etc. Because I had much more experience with this company than most people had, and definitely in the blogging world, I happily helped as many people as I could. Then it dawned on me that I could host a Boden Weekly Review Roundup where I would host both my reviews of Boden items and others' reviews of their items. My roundup would include reviews from other bloggers, but I would also take reviews that were emailed to me or were left at my blog in comments.
In doing so, I also knew that having easy access to the directory of items at Boden would be nice, so I asked Boden if I could affiliate with them through their affiliate program. They said yes, informed me that I would receive a commission on any sale made from my site through the clicks, and that they would provide me with coupons and such to help out my blog readers (so they could get a great price on their items). It made sense to me and it allowed me to feel like I was being compensated for the time I put into my review roundups (one took me nearly four hours to edit and write!), but also I really was glad to read that my blog friends would have access to some great coupons!
Anyhow, this affiliation still exists, and Boden has in the past three years given me two items (a scarf and a dress), and they have asked me to host two giveaways (scarves and a $125 gift card). That's it. I have also received a pair of tights and a pair of underpants from FreshPair (another group I am affiliated with).
I don't personally mind affiliations. I think if the blogger writes the majority of his or her blog and gives good content, then there is a justification for having affiliations and commissions. I will happily click on other blogs who have links to products and services I use, especially if that blog is the reason I heard of the product or service, or if that blog did me a service by giving me an honest, well-thought out review of the product or service.
Going forward, my blog is not going to be the same as it was in 2009, or 2012, or 2014. I am a human being. I change, and so will my blog. Unless something crazy happens, I will probably always buy from Boden, because I do love their products so much. I don't anticipate stopping sewing. Even though I buy less from J. Crew than I used to, I still will probably get a few items from them over the years.
One day I will return full-time to work. I will still blog, but I am sure it will be less often. I substitute teach now, and full-time parent, and I feel like that is hard enough, so I know when I go back to full-time *whatever* and full-time parenting, I will likely be less available than I currently am.
Finally, one decision that I made way back when was my smartest decision I could have made. In naming my blog My Superfluities, I covered all my bases. Since superfluities are "things in excess or overabundance," I can happily state that I have never gone off task in any posts that I have ever written. ;-)