Our Blog Goals, Plans and Dreams for 2014

A Beautiful Mess With the new year comes the exciting craving for change and growth. We're big fans of goal setting. We love dreaming big. We're obsessed with change. If you've read our blog for long you know that these are some of our favorite topics. 

In the same breath, we're big believers in the old saying, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." 

We love A Beautiful Mess and over the past six and a half years it's slowly transformed from a just-for-fun hobby of mine to the backbone of our growing company. We're content and committed to what we do. It's literally our dream job.

So with that said, we want to share with you our goals, plans and dreams for this blog in 2014. We're not reinventing anything, but small changes and tweaks are what keep us growing and moving forward. It's exciting to find that balance between change and focus. Both are needed. Both are important. A Beautiful MessWhat's Changing? 

Our Team: Earlier this year we shared our "state of the biz" in which we shared lots of details about our growing company. Over the past few years Emma and I transitioned from a two-person-operation to a team. We hired our first two full-time employees! 

While we never expected our blog to take this path, it has proved to be one of the best choices we ever made. One very exciting change 2014 brings is Laura Gummerman, who we originally hired as a Project Assistant, is now also a writer for ABM and will be sharing her beautiful ideas and projects here on a weekly basis. So, to clarify, Laura will be helping with behind-the-scenes work as well as writing some of her own original posts. We love her unique perspectives and style, so we expanded her position here. She actually already started last month! Here's us at Emma's bachelorette party. We love you Laura!!Laura GummermanWe're looking forward to slowly adding to our dream team. Next month Sarah and Josh will be joining us all the way from Arizona (with a newborn daughter tooβ€”eeek!)

Our Schedule: In 2013 Emma and I worked too many weekends. Almost all of them. And while that will always happen from time to time, we want to work harder to protect our days off in 2014. Give our minds a little more time to replenish. It's weird how doing something we love too much at once can inhibit us from doing the very thing we love, you know? Anyway, one change that will help us solve this problem is that we will be closing comments on the weekends. The reason we chose to do this is because we moderate comments, which means that someone always has to be working 7 days a week to make sure your comments are getting published. So this small change will enable everyone on our team to unplug and enjoy their weekends. There will still be scheduled posts, but the comments will be closed just on Saturday and Sunday posts. We'll be sharing things on the weekends that don't necessarily need comments like roundups, wish lists and announcements. πŸ™‚

What's Evolving? 

New E-Courses:  You may have noticed that our old e-courses are no longer for sale. That's because we have new courses coming soon. We're writing new 2.0 versions of some of our most popular courses like Blog Love, Blog (Design) Love and Dream Job as well as adding a ton of new courses in areas like photography, goal setting, sewing and more! There are more exciting details and additions we will share with you soon. I promise we won't make you wait much longer, full details are coming later this month! 

More Focus: This is the first year in two years that we aren't writing a book behind-the-scenes on top of writing the blog. We do plan to write more books in the future, but a small break was much needed. That means that Emma and I will be able to focus more creative energy on what we love the most, this blog! We're going to take advantage of this year and really focus on building the content that we are most passionate about, Food and Home. We love writing about a variety of topics here, but those two areas are where we want to invest our time, energy and resources this coming year. The possibilities are endless!  

What's Next? 

In 2014 we have a lot of exciting projects coming out! A Beautiful Mess Happy Handmade HomeA New Book: In August our new book, A Beautiful Mess Happy Handmade Home will be released! (Yes, it's already available for pre-order… isn't that crazy?!) We're looking forward to sharing more as the release approaches. We poured so much love and energy into this book I'm surprised we're not in a coma now. 

A Whole New App (!!!): More details to come. In addition, we have another fun little A Beautiful Mess App update in the works. 

New Product Collaborations: Emma and I have collaborated with a few of our favorite companies this past year on products that we can't wait to wear, use and share with you! 

We also plan to add to/change up how we feature fashion here on the blog. Adding a full time photographer to our team next month we feel will really enable us to be in the front of the camera (instead of behind) just a little bit more from time to time. πŸ™‚

I can't help but feel like I'm probably forgetting something important, but I guess that's it for now. πŸ˜‰ Cheers to a new year and renewed energy and passion! We love you guys, we really really do. xo. Elsie (and Emma too!)

Credits // Author: Elsie Larson, Photography: Janae Hardy and Sarah Rhodes. 

  • Looking forward to the changes that 2014 will bring. Looking forward to the new A Beautiful Mess blog and all the wonderful posts & features!!! 2014: Looking forward, never back..
    xs

  • Really looking forward to the changes, but thinking it’s a shame about comments being closed on the weekends. Can’t you just not moderate them until the week? I can only imagine the work your team puts in to comments though… so I think I’m being naive. Anyway – all the best for 2014 πŸ™‚ Off to see if Amazon UK have your book for preorder!

  • What a flipping dream! You ladies continue to inspire me to go after my dream job (as I type from my cubicle) I can’t wait to see all of the newness ABM has to offer this year.

  • Ordering. Book. Now. Yay! So excited! You so need to have days off. You gotta enjoy your beautiful messes! I love all mine! Congrats. You are an inspiration in so many ways.

  • Hi Elsie & Emma! I can’t wait to witness these great changes and wish you all (team) a well deserved success. I’m also super excited to see your new book as the launch date is my Bday! xox Happy New Year & much Love
    Erica

  • Oh my goodness, a new book out so soon!! YAY! I love all these goals. I’ve been a reader for at least 4 years and you guys just keep improving. Best wishes Emma and Elsie for 2014! It will be a great year. πŸ™‚
    Sarah M

  • Hi Rosie, Thanks for the comment! I love hearing that you value engaging with us and much as we do! It’s funny and might seem small and silly to some, but we’ve actually been talking about the best solution for a few months now. Just some way to alleviate some of the weekend hours. We’re hoping that reorganizing the types of posts that go up on the weekend will make this a non-issue to most. Round-ups, wish lists and announcements don’t typically get a whole lot of comment activity. And it will just be the posts that go up on the weekend that won’t allow comments. So everything else will work exactly like you’re describing. You can still comment on a Friday post over the weekend. We just won’t get it published until Monday. Make sense?

    Anyway, we can’t thank you enough for reading and supporting us! xo. Emma

  • That sounds like a great new year for the both of you! Happy new year and I’m looking forward to the book launch!!

  • I’ve been following ABM for about a year now and it’s become one of my favorites. Thanks for all you do to keep this place happy and fresh! Can’t wait to see what the new year holds and I can’t wait to get my hands on that book! Happy New Year!

  • Hi πŸ™‚ I absolutely love your blog since I first found it on the web back in 2011. You’re such an inspiration! I hope that 2014 brings so much love and joy and new projects for you!

    A few days ago I thought that it would be awesome to purchase your e-course Blog Love. However, today, I found out it is sold out :/ do you have any idea when is it going to be available again?

    xoxo,
    Catarina.

  • This is all so exciting! I do have one question…for those of us that have purchased (especially recently) some of your e-courses? Will there be a discount on the 2.0 versions? I just bought Blog Love and Dream Job, but I totally would have waited if I knew there were new ones being released! Either way…I’m excited for it all!

  • I love how you guys are so enthousiastic. and man how much you have reached, unbelivable. Your job seems very buisy but also so rewarding to me. I wish all of you a very happy new year!

  • Yay for goal-setting! I’m a pretty big nerd about it myself πŸ™‚

    I love your blog and will be excited about all the new tweaking, I’m sure! You ladies are GREAT!

  • Well done sisters! I think your blog is very nice because you are nice, generous and people like me love it! I hope you grow up but don’t change yours minds!! Congratulations!! Love from France

  • very excited to see what 2014 brings from you ladies!

    i’m even more excited for the app update. after spending a lot of money on purchasing each additional add on, i haven’t been able to use the app at all since the last update. that’s almost a month without it! this was very frustrating, as i’ve never spent that much money on an app before. I’m sure you are working to get it straightened out as fast as possible.

    good luck on your endeavors in the new year!

    xo. toolie

  • So many exciting changes! I can’t wait for the new app, and of course, the new book! I’ve already pre-ordered it, and will wait for the package on my doorstep in August! Fingers crossed that a book signing tour brings you through Minneapolis. πŸ™‚

    Thanks for all of your hard work, and looking forward to everything 2014 brings for all of us! You ladies are such an inspiration!

  • Thanks for all that you gals do! Your blog rocks – always something inspirational fashion-wise, crafting-wise, food-wise or lifestyle-wise! And, yea, c-r-a-z-y good I put in my preorder of your upcoming book…can’t wait! Happy 2014!

  • So exciting!!! I’m so proud of you guys and everything you achieve, it’s still something that inspires me on a daily basis. Can’t wait for the new book! Love you guys!!

  • Hi Catarina,
    That course is scheduled to re-launch in February! I’m writing completely new content for it. So excited to share more soon!
    xx- Elsie

  • Such exciting news! I can’t wait to see all of the new things (and book!) that you have planned! I think it’s great that you’re closing off the comments for weekends because it can be so overwhelming. I made a goal to stop doing anything blog-oriented on Sundays to help with the craziness.

    xoxo
    Taylor

    http://www.welcomehometaylor.com

  • Hi Toolie! Oh no!
    Did you contact our support team? Here is the info-
    β€’ [email protected] (.co, not .com)
    β€’ [email protected]

    Thanks so much for your support!
    xo- Elsie

  • Your energy and passion for sharing all things creative inspires me every time I come here. Congrats on the new book and bringing more people onto your team!

  • Great news all around! I’m looking forward to Laura’s posts! I really like her blog as well! πŸ™‚ Happy 2014 ABM!

  • I’m unbelievably excited about this year as a reader! I’ve been reading ABM for maybe 2 or 3 years now, and I can’t believe how much it’s grown without EVER becoming boring, impersonal or too commercial to read. I’m so excited about the book club, the new book and the new app! Thank you for loving living a creative life enough to share it. xo

  • So excited for everything you have planned this year! Can’t wait for the new book, I was given your first as a Christmas present and LOVE it, and have just started on the homework for the Blog Love e course that was also a Christmas gift (Although slightly gutted that there will be a re release with new content ;))

    Anyways, love the blog thank you for being so inspiring and positive πŸ™‚

  • Sounds very exciting, even if the changes are not such major ones. Especially expanding and hiring, it’s quite a move and I’m very excited for what it will bring to the blog!
    Also, I completely understand why you’ll turn off the comments. It’s important to relax and tone off sometimes or it can get too much, even if it is doing what you love.

    Happy 2014!

    {Teffy’s Perks} X

  • So much excitement. I plan on buying your book and taking an e-course this year. You ladies are so inspirational. I wish I had someone (a blogger buddy) to take photos of me. All I have is my husband and even though he is a beautiful artist he takes not so good photos of me for posts. I know part of it is because he doesn’t understand the blog world and what I’m going for but a lot of it has to do with the fact that he wants me smiling and candid cuz he is bias. For Christmas I had my mom get me a tripod and a remote clicker so hopefully I can start taking better photos.

    Keep up the good work ladies.

  • Hi
    I have only recently discovered – and fallen in love with – your blog. The beauty of discovering a blog later than everyone else is that you have soooooo many previous posts to catch up with which is a delightful way to spend a few hours (ahem….days)!

    p.s Where did Elsie get the boots she is wearing on the cover of ‘Happy Handmade Home’?
    thanks
    Angela x

  • Hello girls,
    I love your blog! I’m very excited about your new book too… I pre-ordered it today! Happy New Year!!!

  • Happy New Year and I’m so excited for all of your changes πŸ™‚ Good for you guys for taking time off for yourselves – that’s a great idea!

    Bailey

  • Congratulations and thank you for sharing! I think holding the comments on the weekend is a great idea to help you guys get some well deserved unplugged time (at least from this blog!)

    Keep kickin’ tail, ladies. Cheers to the entire team!

  • I can’t believe how much this blog has grown! I really love how much you girls put into it, and even still have time to check out other blogs too. I did a happy dance for at least an hour when I got a comment from you!

  • This is so wonderful and inspiring. Emma and Elsie (+ team!), I started reading ABM about 5 years ago when I was still in high school. This year, I will be graduating college and getting married, and I have grown so much in this time. I have looked up to you two so much over the past 5 years as inspiring role models–amazing, talented, creative, and thoughtful women who have shared their passions. I remember thinking in high school, “I hope I can be just like them.” Now realizing I have the skills to be amazing is a great feeling.
    As I start a new chapter in my life, I am constantly hoping my life and career will be fulfilling in the ways your blog has inspired me. Your outlines and goal setting posts have always been great little extras to the amazing creative posts, and have really helped me set my life on track in a meaningful way. Best wishes in the new year, <3 Marissa

  • I am SO proud to say that i am a reader for six years! This blog is my dream job and i identify so much with your passion and what you share here.. Super ready for another year and whats to come. Yey!

  • I’m so excited for you all and what’s to come in the next year! The world needs more inspiring ladies like you!

  • Hi Elsie and Emma,
    I’ve been making your blog as my daily read every morning since i was in college and it was 3 years a go. And i’m still being biggest fan and proud reader.
    I really want to purchase your book, but i couldn’t find it in my country. I’m living in Indonesia btw.
    Thank you. XXXXXXXXX

  • How very very (very) wonderful. Go team ABM! (p.s. I’d like to take a quick moment to thank you, once again, for featuring my home in 2013. It’s given me -and my work- remarkable exposure and I’m so thankful for that.) Enjoy a beautiful year πŸ™‚

  • That book looks like loads of fun! I know exactly what you mean working on the weekends, good for you guys finally being at the point where you can & will take time off! Cheers to 2014!

  • So excited that all that will come this year for the ABM team! I’m excited to see where this year takes you and where it will take me as I follow along (is that weird to say?). πŸ™‚ I’m excited for your book release, new app(?!), and e-courses, too. I have lots to learn from you all, that’s for sure!

    Happy 2014!!

  • “We also plan to add to change up how we feature fashion here on the blog.” I’m available as a freelance proofreader! Ha πŸ™‚ I’m an editor, so mistakes stick out to me like a sore thumb! I’m so excited for you all – I’ve been a long time reader and your success is well deserved!

  • That sounds amazing!
    Thank you for your work, you girls are such an inspiration to me!
    Kisses from PAris πŸ™‚

  • Congratulations on so far you’ve come!
    I always look forward to reading your blog and cannot wait to visit it this year!

  • Oh, your plans sound amazing πŸ™‚ It’s unbelievable how productive and creative you are and it’s great that your team is growing. I hope – even if there will be more authors – this blog will keep its personal tone.
    What I’m still missing is your app for Android versions that are a little bit older. I’d love to install the app – but unfortunately, with my 2.3.5 Android version, this is simply not possible and I’m not able to just buy a new phone because of your app πŸ™

  • I was so mad with ABM for a while because I felt like you guys were posting the same things over and over. BUT(!) now I know why! You guys seem like you have been super busy and I am just so excited to see the new book and app and all other projects you have in store. This post has made me so happy and I am super excited for the both of you. Happy New Year and best of luck on your adventures. Thank you for sharing your beautiful lives with us!!!

  • Way to go you guys … you’re such a huge inspiration in the blogging community. It sounds like you have an exciting year ahead for your fans to enjoy (and hopefully for you and your team to enjoy doing too!) And good for you for taking things down a bit on the weekends. You must save your energy and have some outside fun, in order to keep on creating!

    And I certainly have been enjoying seeing Laura’s posts so far.

  • You gals are just so inspiring! Congrats on all of the hard work! Look forward to your fun adventures in 2014!

    Love,
    Chelsea

    aka Mixed Mediums Theatre

  • Love your website, girls, and love the positive and upbeat spirit both of you (now all of you!) share. Blessings on your goals and your new year!

  • I just love your blog. Keep up the good work, can’t wait for the book πŸ™‚

    x from The Hague, Netherlands!

  • question!

    will the new app be available for android the same day as apple….or do we have to suffer again!?

    thanks!,
    Les

  • Elsie, Emma, Laura…and team!

    I am so excited about all your upcoming plans! I have been reading your Blog now for over a year and half, which is what triggered me to buy the Blog Love course and start a blog of my own. I must say, I could have predicted all of this (and I think I did a few times!) – all of this success was and is due to happen due to your outstanding talent and work ethic.

    Congrats Laura, for having an expanded role at ABM – and thanks for your quick and efficient responses to a few emails I have sent since you started…love the look of your creative work, so what a fab addition you are to the team.

    Keep it up…and I do not want to forget anyone – also sending a big congrats to Emma’s husband who I know plays a big part in the behind the scenes running’s.

    Love you guys and wishing you all the best – I am off to Amazon to pre-order your book now. xo

    Jeanine in Jamaica