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Influencer Spotlight: Catching Up with Kelly Mindell

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Not everyone can make everyday life look like something out of a carefully curated, creative and colorful Pinterest board, but Kelly Mindell of Studio DIY makes it look easy with her bright, modern and playful approach to getting crafty.

Kelly is an expert crafter, party planner extraordinaire and all-around celebrator who makes everything from emoji balloons, donut corn hole and birthday cake boxes look like easy do-it-yourself (DIY) projects anyone can take on. Her thoughtfully crafted how-to’s, guides and party ideas inspire her readers to celebrate the everyday, and have captured the attention of Martha Stewart Living, Refinery29 and Glitter Guide.

Currently living in Los Angeles, Kelly took some time out of her busy newlywed life to give us a sneak peek behind the world of DIY blogging.

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Images via Mary Costa Photography and Jeff Mindell
360i: How did your blog start and what spurred your passion for all things DIY?
KM: I designed my blog during my senior year of college as part of an independent study. Initially I had envisioned more of a wedding focus for the blog, but after launching it six months post-graduation, I quickly found my passion was in celebrating everything… not just your wedding day!

360i: What kind of content do your fans react best to and how do you keep them constantly engaged?
KM: My fans love color and easy, accessible projects and ideas for brightening their everyday lives. Studio DIY is all about playful projects that the kid inside of each of us would enjoy!

360i: What is your creative process like, and where do you find the most inspiration?
KM: I find a lot of inspiration here in Los Angeles. There is so much talent, so many well curated shops, and a never-ending supply of colorful walls that it’s hard not to be inspired here. I don’t have one singular creative process. Sometimes I know the end result I want from a project and I work backwards from there, or sometimes I find a really awesome product or craft supply that I want to incorporate and dream up a project inspired by it. I love having the freedom to explore so many avenues of creativity, which you can see in the various content I post on my blog.

360i: What are your favorite social platforms or apps for sharing your work?
KM: My favorite social platform by far is Instagram. I love that it is visually focused. I’ve developed a strong community on the platform where I get to chat with fans about their thoughts on projects, see their versions of the DIYs I produce (with my fan project hashtag #troopstudiodiy), answer their questions, and even ask them a few questions, too! It is fun to showcase the pretty side of life on Instagram, as well as behind-the-scenes peeks (follow hashtag #cantcropthis) at what it really looks like to produce creative blog content on a daily basis.

360i: Are there any influencers you look to for inspiration or admire – whether it’s the content they create or how they’ve built their careers?
KM: I’m a huge fan of Jihan from Geronimo Balloons for both her immense creativity and her business sense. She essentially revolutionized a huge aspect of the party industry (balloons!) but remains humble, sweet and just plain hilarious.

I also admire Susan of Freshly Picked, who is truly living the “American Dream” of starting with nothing and building an empire. Seeing how she used social media to grow her moccasin brand into a multi-million dollar business is unbelievably inspiring. And in true fan-girl nature, I’m obsessed with Kendra of Bouffants and Broken Hearts. Her illustrations and patterns blow my mind, and she pulls on my heartstrings with her use of crazy colors and infinite food-inspired patterns. I’ve been lucky enough to get to work with her for a few Studio DIY projects and have loved every minute of these projects.

360i: When approached with partnership opportunities, what are the most important factors you consider to ensure you’re staying true to your brand?
KM: I love when brands trust me with creative freedom. I know my brand, and I know what my readers like, so it’s great when I’m able to showcase a product or sponsor in a way that I know will be a hit. It’s very important to me that a brand respect the value of what I do and the confidence I have in knowing my audience.

360i: What kind of work are you hoping to do in the future? Are there any brands or categories with which you would like to collaborate?
KM: This year I’m hoping to expand Studio DIY’s content and bring this colorful, playful style readers have come to love into other aspects of life. I have my sights set on fashion, food, travel and beauty as a few categories for experimentation. I’ve loved creating party and entertaining projects to help celebrate those extra special days, but now I want to help people have a blast on those in-between days too. Life is too short not to!

Keep up with Kelly and her latest projects on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.