Best friends Madison Shiflet and Lauren Nielsen are the creators of the blog that is proudly named “Awkward Girls.”
The blog, which now has over 1,000 members, over 300,000 page views and was featured on television, has turned into more than both of them had imagined.
“The first three or four months, our blog was pretty under the radar,” Shiflet said. “Our followers were mostly our close friends and our moms. It wasn’t until we started becoming active in the blogging community that our blog’s popularity started picking up.”
On Feb. 6, Shiflet and Nielsen appeared on ABC4’s “The Daily Dish” where they spoke about their fashion blog. Both had to step out of their comfort zones to explain their blog to many viewers in Salt Lake Valley.
“We were incredibly nervous,” Nielsen said. “We’re not very good at talking about our blog in the first place, so having to talk about it on live TV was a little scary.”
Some may ask where the name “Awkward Girls” came from. While brainstorming ideas in June 2011, Shiflet and Nielsen decided they wanted to come up with a title that was unique.
“We wanted to come up with a name that was easy to remember and perfectly captured who we are,” Shiflet said. “After going through a million ideas, we realized we just had to be true to who we really are: two awkward girls.”
Rachel Porter, who is studying human development, keeps up with the blog and enjoys looking at the new styles Shiflet and Nielsen introduce every week.
“I love their blog because it shows what kind of personalities they both have,” Porter said. “I’ve met them in real life and think they both are funny and have a wonderful sense of style.”
Shiflet and Nielsen both live busy school lives but still manage to post three to five times a week to keep the attention of their followers.
“It varies depending on what our schedules are like for that week and how much the daylight allows us to take pictures,” Nielsen said. “But we try to be as consistent as possible.”
Shiflet and Nielsen have learned, as fashion bloggers, that they need to constantly have new clothes and accessories to display on their blog.
Like many college students on a tight budget, purchasing new clothes on a regular basis isn’t possible. To avoid going into debt and still find name-brand styles, Shiflet and Nielsen discovered the sales racks in department stores and thrift-store shopping.
“We pride ourselves in being smart about what we purchase,” Nielsen said. “We always go for the sale section in every store. It has definitely proven to be a good way to save money and get unique pieces.”
Shiflet and Nielsen will even, on rare occasions, add a personal touch to their clothing by making it themselves.
“We have both taken the beginning and intermediate clothing construction classes at BYU, and we can use those skills to either make clothes from scratch or to refashion over-sized thrift finds,” Shiflet said.
Shiflet and Nielsen made money from the blog in the past by getting sponsors in return company advertisements. Due to school and work they have recently been too busy to find sponsors.
Shiflet, who will graduate this April, and Nielsen, who will graduate this fall, intend to continue the blog after college.
Both currently work for marketing companies and plan on a career in marketing and working in fashion. Shiflet, who works for Shabby Apple, an online website that sells women clothing, writes for the company’s website.
Their experience in their current jobs and creating a fashion blog has given these two bloggers valuable experience in marketing and fashion blog writing.
“We’ve had such a great experience blogging this past year and a half, and we want it to continue for as long as possible,” Nielsen said. “We also have some big plans for the future of our blog as it grows and expands.”
To visit their blog go to http://awkwardgirls.blogspot.com/.