RESOURCES

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I'm sure you know the feeling when you find a tool or website that you just love because it makes your life (so much) easier. Am I right?

Well, here's a list of some of the best blogging tools: 

* This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my Disclosure Policy for more details. 

Blogging Resources - Lace & Sparkles

PHOTOGRAPHY

  • Canon T4i - I'm currently using this older version from the Rebel Series and it works just fine for me while I save for a full frame camera. However, you can get the newest version Canon T7i that has a 24.2 Megapixel CMOS sensor and has built-in Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth.
  • Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM - If you want to take good quality photos for your blog, the 18-55 mm kit lens just won't be enough. This fixed lens is a great option for a multi-purpose lens that you can use to obtain that bokeh (blurry background) that most people love. There's also another more affordable version, but I highly suggest getting the f/1.4 if you can. Trust me, it's worth it.
  • Sigma 35mm F1.4 ART - This is my first 'big girl' lens that I got for myself last Christmas. It's more expensive (and way heavier) than the 50mm that I just mentioned but O-M-G, I love it  This lens is so sharp and you can achieve such a beautiful bokeh in your shots. I especially love it for portraits and outfit detail shots.

  •  Sony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Digital Camera - My husband got me this camera for our trip to Japan earlier this year and let me tell you, it's a game changer! So light, yet powerful. It easily became my bff for traveling because I had no more excuses to take nice photos when out and about. No more lugging around heavy gear or being afraid of having it stolen. This camera usually comes with a 16-50mm Power Zoom Lens, which is not bad for street photography if you only want to carry a couple of lenses. However, I also purchased a Sony 35mm f/1.8 lens for portraits and my Instagram husband loves it for taking my outfit photos because it's pretty user-friendly.

  • SanDisk Extreme PLUS 64GB SDXC - Just because you need to store your photos somewhere, these are the ones I use and love. They are FAST!

  •  Photography Softbox Light Lighting Kit - Natural light will always win but sometimes you're too busy during the day or the weather just won't cooperate. This lighting kit includes 2 softboxes that are great for product photography and even Youtube videos/tutorials. 

  •  Tripod - This Manfrotto Tripod is really sturdy and easy to use. You can even get this tripod mount for your smartphone!  

  •  Reflector - I use this 5-in-1 collapsible reflector almost all the time to bounce the light back onto my subject and reduce shadows.  

  • Editing Software: I use Adobe Lightroom to edit all the photos taken with my cameras or these apps if taken with my iphone. For graphics creation, I usually use Adobe Photoshop. 
Blogging Resources - Lace & Sparkles

WEB

  • Hosting: After dealing with a not so great experience with Bluehost, I decided to move on and host my blog (and other websites) with SiteGround. They have amazing customer service, better hosting packages and free SSL certificate for your domains. I personally use their 'GrowBig' hosting plan, which is still very affordable and lets you host multiple websites. BONUS: Siteground is having an amazing Labor Day Sale until September 11th. You can get up to 70% off your web hosting plan! I highly recommend purchasing the longest term you can afford because sales only apply for new customers. Ha, I wish I had known that when I first got my hosting plan. Oh, well! Now you know 🙂 
  • WordPress Themes: I love a good feminine and elegant theme and I'm *obsessed* with looking at every single one out there and imagining how I can make them work for me. That being said, these are my favorite ones:
    • BluChic
    • Pipdig
    • Pretty Darn Cute  - These themes require the Genesis Framework in order to function ($60).
    • Hello You Designs - These themes require the Genesis Framework in order to function ($60). 
    • Restored 316 - These themes require the Genesis Framework in order to function ($60). 
    • Theme Forest  This is a cool marketplace where you can fin all sorts of themes for your WordPress site. My advice, verify the reviews of the theme you're interested in purchasing and make sure the theme's author includes regular updates and support. 
Blogging Resources - Lace & Sparkles