Thursday, November 7, 2013

2013 Bloggy Awards

In September I announced the Bloggy Awards are returning.  Well, here they are!

Inaugurated last year, the first Bloggy Award was won by lovely Lynne.  This year, the Awards go to three recipients.  In addition to worldwide recognition and a bigass trophy, the winners each receive a hefty cash prize of $500.

The winners this year are exceptional people.  They are active in our blogging community.  All put together interesting outfits on a regular basis.  All comment generously on other blogs.  The signature quality that propels them to prominence and leads me to laud them here is their noticeable niceness.

Each of these three winners is as sweet as real maple syrup.  Each sends e-mails and letters to other bloggers.  Each cares about people.  The most important criterion I used to select this year's recipients is heart -- these women offer compassion, concern and emotional support.  They selflessly give of themselves and we benefit from their efforts.  That scarce trait deserves applause.

Plus, they wear great outfits!  Their creations are pleasing and eclectic ensembles.  These bloggers mix colors and prints and wear designs with artistic flair.  Visiting their blogs is like sitting in an Advanced Fashion Class.

Without further ado, here are the winners of the 2013 Bloggy Awards!


Aya burst onto the scene this year with a new blog, Couturgatory.  Very quickly, Aya established herself as a major presence.  Aya not only creates great content for her blog, she also visits everyone else's blogs and comments profusely.  Her sudden ubiquity in the blogging world surprised and impressed me.  
Aya's efforts remind me of the passion and commitment I had for blogging in the beginning.  Her enthusiasm is palpable.  She spends lots of time seeking new friends, supporting them, and presenting her life to the world.  That's some of the best work a blogger can do.
Like Yogi, Aya is smarter than the average bear.  She writes beautifully with lucid prose and incisive analysis.  While never calling attention to her massive brain, Aya processes information like a super-computer.  Often we can sense when we're in the presence of high intelligence and you get that feeling about Aya.  I feel smarter just being around her.
Aya is a young student living in California.  She has very little money and gets almost all of her clothes from thrift-shops.  Those constraints actually work for her because they unleash her creativity.  Aya constructs interesting outfits from odd bits of clothing.  It's fun to see what she can do with items we'd never wear, like a harness from Megan.  
Aya's wardrobe is full of unusual vests, boots and hats.  She has a bohemian style with a whiff of steampunk.  I'm fascinated by her visual presentation.

Here are some words from Aya -- "Originally when making this blog, I wanted to find people who dressed in some of the styles I did....It's quickly become something different -- much greater and more personal than I could have anticipated. I've met a circle of warm, generous friends, and in the future I'd like to learn more from the blogs I admire -- the ones that foster dialogue with readers and create a forum.  In the United States, we often lack a 'third space', a public gathering place that is neither home nor work, where public dialogue and conversation can take place.  The country is so geographically broad that our populations are separated by a great deal of physical space. Sometimes I wonder if that's why we flocked to the Internet so eagerly."
Let's give Aya a round of applause and encourage her to keep blogging!

Chronically Vintage

Jessica has been blogging at Chronically Vintage for four years.  I discovered her blog last year while exploring vintage fashion.  Jessica focuses on that area and her blog is the most popular in the vintage clothing field.  In fact, if you google vintage fashion, they send you straight to Jessica.  She's that prominent.
Reading Jessica's blog, I immediately realized that Jessica transcends her niche by virtue of who she is as a person.  Jessica is warm, loving and sweet.  She actively searches for ways to be a good friend.  Jessica pays attention to what you say, listens carefully to your thoughts and responds with amazing sensitivity.  Jessica is like one of those characters in a sci-fi movie who have a super-power -- hers is a heightened sense of empathy.
Rare among blogs, Chronically Vintage is educational.  It addresses fashion history in depth and explores subjects not examined elsewhere.  Her blog is where I first learned what a snood was.  I'd never even heard the word before!  "Snood."  How cool!
Jessica's rich content is presented with gorgeous visual imagery.  I don't know of another blog that is as beautiful to look at.  I'm fascinated by what Jessica cooks up and always end up learning interesting new things from her.  Her blog is an entertaining encyclopedia
Jessica's style, of course, is vintage.  It's intriguing to see the differences vintage clothing and outfits have from modern-wear.  We instantly recognize a time-warp and upon closer inspection see new aspects to the clothes of earlier times.  We learn how women dressed and groomed when our mothers and grandmothers were young.  Jessica embraces this and wears interesting clothes.  Looking at her outfits is like peering into the past.  A beautiful past, I must add.
You benefit from studying vintage fashion even if you have no desire to wear it yourself because you learn timeless lessons that apply to what's in your closet right now.  My foray into vintage fashion taught me valuable stuff and I hope to continue the education, while wearing seamed stockings.  :-)

Jessica lives in Canada with her loving hubby Tony.  Here are some words from her -- "There are a plethora of reasons why I blog, but without a doubt, the most important is because it gives me a creative outlet that, if only for a small window most days, allows me to step away from the constant ups and downs of life with multiple severe chronic illnesses and instead [focus] on something solid, beautiful, and filled with a sublime amount of joy: vintage.  I have loved all things vintage for as far back as I've had memories, and have been wearing 1940s and 50s fashions (and makeup looks and hairstyles) since I was a teenager. Preserving and celebrating that past is an integral part of who I am and how I see myself."
Jessica deserves more acclaim than she receives and I want to remedy that.  We should all join together and thank her publicly for the great work she is doing.
Sideburns & Bangs
Sara has been blogging at Sideburns & Bangs for years.  I've followed her for a long time and am endlessly fascinated by what she does on her blog.  Sara blogs about clothes, food and life in general.  She shares her experiences and thoughts about everything. 
Sara has a big heart -- it barely fits into Comerica Park.  You see her give love to everyone around her, which makes you want to finagle your way closer to her.  Okay, my secret's out -- I want to be Sara's friend!
Sara lives in Michigan which looks like a mitten; hence, the nickname "The Mitten".  She lives with her supportive hubby Kyle and cute dog Louie.  Sara has lots of wacky relatives whom you get to meet and lots of crazy friends who pose in funny costumes with drinks in their hands.  Life is a party in Sara World.
I'm always impressed at Sara's ambitions.  She strives to learn about multiple subjects and works hard at her goals.  Sara experiments with cooking like an eager chef; she reads books like a literature student; she watches movies like a cinephile.  The range of Sara's interests is surprising and, if you go along on her journeys, you see sights you never expected to witness.  Reading her blog, you learn how to make spicy tomato sauce, who's slated to become the new Doctor Who, and why it's fun to go to baseball games even if you don't like baseball.
I suspect there are several Sara-clones running around because one person can't accomplish all she does.  Blogging daily, caring for family, exploring multiple activities and expanding her horizons are jobs for more than one of us.  Sara is a super woman; hear her roar!
Finally, Sara's fashion style.  It's personal.  Unique.  Sara-esque.  I fell in love with how Sara dresses years ago and it never stopped appealing to me.  Her outfits reflect her particular personality and, in the end, isn't that what we all aim for?  The lesson I draw from Sara's choices is that we should all be ourselves.  We are all special and expressing our individuality is wonderful.

Here are some words from Sara -- "I think what I want to achieve with my blog is utilizing it as a scrapbook for the positive happenings in my life....Especially since there are days when nothing seems to go right.  I can share something that did, and that I am proud of.  I also love reading all of the feedback."

Congratulations to the winners of this year's Bloggy Awards!

If you're not familiar with these bloggers, I recommend you fly to their blogs right now and start reading.  You'll enjoy and respect them.


  1. WOOOO!!! Congrats to the winners. I'm extremely pleased to see Aya make your list. She's quickly become a fast friend for me. I adore her style and her thoughtful nature!

    I don't know other bloggers as personally, but I offer them many congrats and will spend more time lurking around some new-to-me bloggers!!

  2. Yay for Aya! :) Her blog is one of my new favorites. :) Will have to check out the other two blogs as well!

    1. Ditto! Love Aya so much, and look forward to checking out the other honourees. Congrats, all!

  3. Thanks, Ally, for being so generous in your celebration of fellow bloggers!

  4. Ally, great choices! I am only familiar with Aya (and I adore her style), so thank you for the introduction to the others!

  5. Two new bloggers for me to discover! Thanks so much.

    I've only "met" Aya recently but she is already making me smile. Her comments are witty and intelligent and she is wildly creative. Amazing that it all comes in one package.

    Congrats to all the winners! and what a cool concept for you to put together. Very generous of you.


  6. I'll tell y'all what I told Ally: I honestly and truly don't know what to say. I'm massively overwhelmed and honored to have the good regard of all of you, because I love your blogs and your comments and I've gotten to have a great time blogging. I can't wait to start reading the two other bloggers, and thank you Ally, and thank you all so much!

  7. congratulations to the winners!
    i´m happy that jessica is one of them! she´s so lovely and stylish :-)
    have to have a look at the other girls now.........

  8. This honour means more to me than I can adequately put into words, Ally. You have written so eloquently about my blog and I, picturing us both in the kind of esteemed light and in a way that only a wise and very dear friend ever could. I am humbled, touched, and exceedingly happy to be named one of this year's winners. Never, in all my life, will I forget the joy of receiving this award nor how incredibly moved (to tears) I was by your profile of me and Chronically Vintage.

    With all my heart, thank you.

    ♥ Jessica

  9. Thanks for introducing us some awesome bloggers, plus congrats to all who got awarded here :D Have a great weekend :) !

  10. I do read Jessica's blog, it is amazing! I look forward to reading the other two and congratulations to all 3, isn't this wonderful!! x x x

  11. Thanks for introducing me to some new blogs to check out. I've been reading Jessica's a couple of years --and am adding the others to my reading list!

  12. Congrats to all the winners - especially to miss Sara! She's one of my favsies and has been for quite some time and I agree with everything you said about her! I am excited to get to know the other two ladies a bit better too. Congrats again to all three!

  13. Congrats to the winners and YAY AYA!!!!!! I <3 her - she is so sweet and thoughtful (I'm sure the other ladies are, too, I just don't know them).

  14. Holy cow! Sorry this took me so long, I may have broke my computer at work today (shhh, don't tell anyone). I seriously feel like crying, you have been one of my best blogging buddies for a few years now. I really am so thankful for friends like you in my life, so thank you so much for this. I can't wait to meet the other bloggers!

  15. Oh, I love this idea! These three ladies are seriously fantastic - thanks for introducing me to them!

    Have a fantastic day,

  16. what a cute intro for each blogger! Totally going to check them out!

  17. What a wonderful way to reward fellow bloggers. Very thoughtful. I haven't heard of the two other bloggers before but I'm so glad that Jessica made your list.

  18. Hooray for all the winners! Good choice!

  19. Amazing bloggers and prizes - woo hoo!


  20. Congratulations to the winners! I'm not actually familiar with any of them, so now I have three now folks to follow! What a great thing for you to do, Ally, brava.

  21. My goodness, what a wonderful thing to do Ally! I really enjoyed reading each blogger's story and you are exceptionally generous to spotlight these lovely ladies. I only knew Jessica from your group, but that will change! I will visit these other blogs now. And as for Jessica? You hit the nail on the head, she is one of the kindest souls I've come across in the blogosphere.

  22. Oooh, can't wait to read each of these awesome ladies' blogs! They all seem really awesome...and they must be, to earn such high praise from you :)

  23. What a wonderful post! Congratulations to the Bloggy recipients! I can't wait to check them out.

  24. Oh, this is all kinds of good feeling! I'm glad I popped by...I love Jessica, and everything you've said is so true. She is so genuine! I just recently met Aya, and was delighted when she popped by my blog. And! I look forward to checking out Sara's blog too.

  25. Great picks. I have been following Jessica since you "introduced" her months back :)