Blog Sister Love

Afrobella really just started out as a whimsical avenue for self expression. I didn’t expect to develop such a vibrant, wonderful readership, and I definitely didn’t expect to discover a kind of sisterhood in blogging. In my earliest days, I found inspiration and support in some blogs, and an online friendship with some others. Now that I’m approaching my two year anniversary (August, baby!), it’s kind of wonderful to see where we’ve all come.

My amiga Nichelle of Anovelista and 55 Secret Street recently celebrated her two year blog anniversary, and after a hiatus, is back to blogging about things lighthearted (WORD on the Prescriptives foundations!) and less so (her post On First Ladies Named Michelle is the kind of blogging I aspire to). Go ‘head, Nichelle! Congrats on the anniversary.

Congratulations are also in order to the brilliantly talented Andrea of Fly — the bella who blogs about design and fashion and always features amazing patterns is celebrating her two year anniversary with a party TODAY, Friday June 20 from 5 to 8 p.m.! If you live in Philly, go be fly with Andrea for me, will ya? She’s selling Fly bags, and has made all kinds of cool party favors. I wish I could go!

One of the first blogs that really inspired Afrobella and supported me from jump, was Concrete Loop. When Angel started the Loop, there were very few black celebrity entertainment blogs on the scene. Now there’s so many others competing for the same scoop on Usher, Chris Brown, Kanye, and Beyonce, but Concrete Loop has remained fresh by adding new ingredients to their already successful formula. I love that Concrete Loop features high school and college graduates, and a diverse and engaging Black History Spotlight alongside the latest dish on Rihanna’s new shoes. That’s edutainment, and they do it well.

The blog that helped me realize, “hey, I can do this too!” has just been honored big time — Time Magazine just named Concrete Loop one of their Best Sites of 08! That is HUGE, and big congratulations to Angel, Brian, and Tianna for doing the damn thing and making a name for themselves. I feel like a proud little sister!

I find continual inspiration at Clutch, an online magazine that features the kind of interviews I aspire to. Thanks to Clutch, I discovered the hilarious Stuff Black People Hate, and their interview with natural hairstyling guru and author Diane DaCosta was a great read for afrobellas seeking hair advice and information. And I am so sorry for only posting this now — Diana’s American Beauty Tour is about to hit Austin TX in one of her final stops, so naturally textured beauties in that region should check her out.

I’ve had some wonderful big sisters in blogging who have linked me and given me shout outs and encouragement along the way, and it’s wonderful to reciprocate in kind. It feels good to be recognized as the “hey, I can do that too!” inspiration for newer bloggers on the scene. I was so honored and psyched when Wes, the creator of Honey Brown Sugar, wanted to feature me in an interview on her site. And she called me her inspiration! Awww, Wes! That makes me so happy and proud. And I love what you’re doing. Click here to read the interview, which features a little spoiler about my next big hair product rave review. (a hint – it starts with a vowel and is very popular with natural haired bellas).

This post features some, but not all of the blog girlfriends I’ve made along the way, and definitely not all of the fabulous new blogs I’ve learned about recently. If you’re a blogger on the scene and you want me to add you to my links or just check you out, tell me about your blog in the comments below. I know how it feels to be just starting out and looking to make friends on the big scary internet. There’s room out here for all of us. Starting a blog is easy, keeping it going is hard work. So big respect to all of you who are out there doing your thing! And if you’re thinking about starting a blog of your own, that’s a whole ‘nother post. I promise to write more about that soon.

What are your favorite, must-read-daily blogs, bellas? Tell me, I’m always looking for new fresh reading material.

Happy Friday!

** edited Saturday, round 6:30 p.m. — Bellas, your comments are so amazing as always, I’m discovering all kinds of amazing blogs. Some of your comments with links are getting stuck in my spam folder. So worry not — I’m looking especially for your comments to fish them out. If you post it twice, I’ll definitely find it and de-spam for ya.

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Comments

  1. auragirl says:

    There are a lot of great blogs out there, but Young, Black and Fabulous is my daily must read material! (www.theybf.com)
    The author Natasha does a great job getting out the latest celeb gossip and she’s funny as well. Check it out!

  2. OK big sis, since you asked, I would love to tell you about my blog!

    I’ve been natural for a few years now and it occured to me that the best way to share info about how I take care of my hair would be on a blog. I live in Tampa, FL and I can no longer count the amount of women that come up to me on the street to ask. “how I get my hair to do that” and I just want to give them a hug and tell them that their hair likely does the same thing. SO, now I have a place to send them fo rmore info.

    I’ve only been up and running for a couple of months now but I have learned that it’s also a great place to share my thoughts on other things that are important (sometimes not that important)to me.

    I’m glad I found your blog, As a 1st generation American of Jamaican heritage, I feel like I know you! I love hearing your thoughts on everything from shopping drama to Pearl Jam (I am an anything good music lover myself).

    So enough said. Check me out when you can:

    http://www.naturalmel.com

    THANKS BELLA!

    ~naturalmel

  3. I’m so glad I started my blog especially with my move overseas. I feel like I can keep up with what’s going on in the States and I’ve “met” so many cool people from all over the world.

    One blog I love is Liz’s at losangelista. Great writer, interesting POV on a variety of subjects. A true afrobella. I’m pretty sure she has commented on your blog.

    http://www.losangelista.com/

  4. i can’t wait to check out some of the blogs that have already been mentioned. for a visual pick me up, http://anindiansummer-design.blogspot.com/search/label/India
    and for beauty, http://mikaelasjetsetbeauty.blogspot.com/
    http://www.mischobeauty.com/
    for fashion, http://jazzimcg.blogspot.com/
    and for a change of pace and at times perspective,
    http://abagond.wordpress.com/

  5. I found stuffblackpeoplehate on Clutch too! It is hilarious. I almost peed when I read the post on pandas.

    I love your blog Bella. I read it everyday while at work. Shh! don’t tell my boss! But anyway, keep up the good work!

    Love Ya Bella!

    Peace

    Candy

  6. I LOVE THIS SITE!!!!! I CHECK IN EVERYDAY. I detoxed from the lye/crack back in October. I went through the withdrawal, asking myself “why did I cut my hair” but I started reading your blog, the comments section and your recommendations and have learned to appreacite and I LOVE MY NATURAL, extra thick hair!!!!! Today, I am sporting a two twist pull out afro at work for the first time, I usually wear the twist or wrap it.
    I would like to say THANK YOU Afrobella and all the sistas replying in the comments section.

  7. Your site and teamsugar!!! I also check out techie diva (yes, I’m a self-admitted nerd) and racialicious.

  8. weeeeeeeeell i think that Brokey McPovery blog is kinda hot. :)

    but seriously, this post made me smile :) good to see ppl uplifting instead of competing and tearing down!

  9. I would love to be added to your links, mama! I run the beauty blog, The Life of A Ladybug (http://lifeofaladybug.typepad.com) and my personal site, Makeda (http://lifeofaladybug.typepad.com/makeda).

    In addition to your fabulousness, I also read the following sites daily:
    All About the Pretty
    The Daily Cookie
    Musings of a Muse
    fourfour
    YBF

    And many, many more!

  10. Oh Bella, there are soo many blogs that I read, it’s amazing that I keep up with anything else (I need to update my list of favorites on my page – it increaes daily). But I always stop by here daily. Many of the blogs I’ve discovered just by checking your site. I love that there is this blogommunity (yes I just made that word up…hahahahahahah) of people inspiring and encouraging one another.

    I started my blog in November 2006. I wanted to test the waters to see if I have what it takes to be a writer/author (my not so secret ultimate dream). So I started writing about what I know best – me and my point of view. I’ve written about some very personal stuf but it has allowed me to really tap into and believe in my capabilites as a writer. hey, I had a ex threaten to sue me over something I wrote. hahahahahaha

    I just wanted to say I love this site and I love the blogfriends I’ve met along the way. Thanks for this post bella; its a great way to start the weekend!!!

  11. This is a shameless plug, but my sister and I started a blog called Fat, Black, & Losin it. It’s a very candid, often funny journey about our journey to shed those extra pounds.

    http://fatblackchick.wordpress.com

  12. Hi Afrobella,

    Since you asked, I love for you to come and check out my blog. http://swanofdreamers.blogspot.com/is just a baby, I started it in February. I was inspired by you and many other bloggers out there. My blog is all about my life as an actor living in New York. It is filled with my thoughts on acting, movies and living my dream.

    As for must go to blogs including yourself, and Fly which you mentioned, there is also: Treat, Celebrate Creativity, Tea Time and Roses, SuziBlue, MakeFetchHappen to name a few which are all under blogspot.com forum. There are more but those come off the top of my head.

    Have a great weekend!!

  13. Too many blogs I love. They all offer stuff from different perspectives. Sometime I spend more time reading than I do writing for my own, but now i’m focused! I love the tips on http://www.problogger.com. I love Bloxilla, Necole Bitchie and Crunk and Disorderly. For my Caribbean fix, Fashion over Style one876ent and out a road.

    Check me out at http://www.styleandvibes.com

  14. Hey afrobella,

    My blogname got entagled with some of the post. The correct listing is
    http://swanofdreamers.blogspot.com/
    Once again, come and check me out. Have a wonderful weekend.

  15. Mrs.Mckinzie says:

    Well,there is this one blog by the name of Afrobella that is my absolute favorite.I also enjoy reading Concreteloop,Sandra Rose,and Necole *itchie.You were robbed they should have named Afrobella one of the best in Time Magazine.

  16. Hey Bella –
    I’m sure you’re well aware that you have been an inspiration for me. I started blogging over a year ago… and it’s been an incredible journey. Funny how a blog morphs and changes as one’s writing develops.

    Anyway, I’m so excited to check out all of these new blogs posted here in the comments. It’s always such a joy to read new perspectives.

    And you can find me, as always, over at CheapThrills: The intersection of race, politics, marketing… and cocktails.
    http://ryanbarrett.typepad.com/cheapthrills/

  17. Hey Bella! To fulfill my passion for creative living & decor & design, I have just launched a site/blog(about 2 weeks ago) called Jubella.com | Get Your Creative Dose(http://jubella.com), so for all of those who love any and everything relating to design,decor, pretty imagery, and creative living ideas come by and visit me!

    My Daily Reads include(but definitely not all):

    http://afrobella.com
    http://ymib.com
    http://treat.typepad.com
    http://flygirls.typepad.com
    http://soulpretty.blogspot.com
    http://creaturecomforts.typepad.com
    http://quejimenez.typepad.com
    http://neosewmama.typepad.com
    http://decor8.blogspot.com
    http://clutchmagonline.com
    http://anindiansummer-design.blogspot.com

  18. You are a great blog mentor to me! We gotta get lunch again, soon!

  19. PS: did you get my e-mail?

  20. Hey Bella! To fulfill my passion for creative living & decor & design, I have just launched a site/blog(about 2 weeks ago) called Jubella.com | Get Your Creative Dose(jubella.com), so for all of those who love any and everything relating to design,decor, pretty imagery, and creative living ideas come by and visit me!

    My Daily Reads include(but definitely not all):

    afrobella.com
    ymib.com
    treat.typepad.com
    flygirls.typepad.com
    soulpretty.blogspot.com
    creaturecomforts.typepad.com
    quejimenez.typepad.com
    neosewmama.typepad.com
    decor8.blogspot.com
    clutchmagonline.com
    anindiansummer-design.blogspot.com

  21. Awww… thanks Bella! I was just minding my own business going through my Google reader and here you are giving a shout out! Thanks and congratulations to your on your own blog anniversary!

    Also, I will definitely check out some of the blogs listed here although I am already intimately acquainted with most of the recommended design blogs:)

  22. … I meant thanks and congratulations to YOU not your of course:)

  23. Congratulations on your upcoming blogging anniversary! You have come a long way in two years and how nice of you to celebrate by giving the shout outs to your blog sisters! I’ll have been blogging for four years this August and the best thing about it really is connecting with all the wonderful women out there who are finding their way through this maze called life and making positive things happen.

    My blog is http://www.losangelista.com

    I describe it as being the quirky observations and hopeful social reflections of a married mother of two pursuing happiness in the City of Angels. Los Angelista delves into issues as diverse as race relations, pop culture and my long-standing Depeche Mode obsession. I also tend to make even mundane visits to Starbucks into an anthropological field study, via the joys of eavesdropping. But above all, I try to make Los Angelista an expressive and forward thinking community, focused on improving the world around us.

    I’d love for you to link to me if you’d like to and again, congrats!

  24. Shouts out to Concreteloop. They have come a long long way. They have also become super forgiving and generous with the “celebs.” It’s kinda nice. But when I want dirty dirt and opinions, I do YBF and Crunk and Disorderly. LOL!

  25. Thanx Patrice! I haven’t spoken to you in forever, we need to catch up! Have a great weekend girl and keep doing your thang!

    Oh and I check:
    clutch magazine
    kanye’s blog
    afrobella (of course)
    + many more that I’m too lazy to list. lol

  26. Besides my blog (www.conjurethis.blogspot.com), I read daily:

    http://www.concreteloop.com
    http://www.maneandchic.blogspot.com

  27. Greetings Queen Bella,
    I commented before and told you that I was so inspired to start my own blog. I do and see so much here in Atlanta and I alway have so much to say, so after becoming a regular to your site and clutchmagonline.com I had to start one for myself. I took the positive route [as opposed to some really negative junk food blogs] and will feature interviews and highlights of art, music and culture in Atlanta. I only have four posts so far, but I’m on my way. http://www.saharcreative.wordpress.com I even added you to my blogroll! Big ups to you for uplifting others…stay positive and keep loving…this world needs it!

    One Love,
    Sahar

  28. Afrobella I really want to thank you for this post. I was just praying about how my blog was going to reach others. The name of it is No Fear, Just DIVA. ( http://firstthreeinc.blogspot.com/ )Here is an excerpt from my welcoming message:

    “Welcome to No Fear, Just DIVA. D-I-V-A stands for Devastatingly Innovative Via Aparel.

    I started this blog because I want a real and serious career in the Fashion Industry and I am finally taking the steps to achieve that. This blog will chart my journey and give me something to look back on when I am one discouraged, two where I want to be in my career. So what pray tell do you want to do in the Industry? That my dear Watson is the question.”

    I want to help others find their way towards a career in the industry as I find mine. My blog has a road theme, I’m all about “Finding your Fashion Freeway” and I talk about “Road Maps” and things like that. I also feature sites that post jobs in the industry and soon interviews with those that are actually working in the Industry and telling about their Fashion Freeway and “Traveling Music” which basically are songs that we listen to to keep us going.

    I hope that you like it enough to blog roll it, it’s not even a week old so it’s kinda bland, but I hope the information is useful just the same. If you know of anyone who is working in the fashion industry or would like to please direct them to my blog I would love to hear and write about their journey on their Fashion Freeway.

    Blogs I visit on the daily

    Afrobella
    the Pop Culture Junkie (http://www.thepopculturejunkie.blogspot.com/)
    – The creator Melody is the most personable person ever! She cares about her readers like you do Bella. She covers pop culture issues but it’s her POV that I appreciate and makes her blog stand out to me.
    Concrete Loop
    Mane and Chic (http://maneandchic.blogspot.com/)
    The Fashion Bomb (http://www.the-fashion-bomb.com/)
    – The blog’s creator Claire will be the first to be featured on my blog in the Road Maps section! Check it out coming this week!

  29. Afrobella, I have been praying for a way for my blog to be seen. Thank you so much for this post. I started my blog No Fear, Just DIVA http://firstthreeinc.blogspot.com/
    because for as long as I can remember I have wanted a career in the fashion industry. Here is an excerpt from my welcoming message:

    “Welcome to No Fear, Just DIVA. D-I-V-A stands for Devastatingly Innovative Via Apparel.

    I started this blog because I want a real and serious career in the Fashion Industry and I am finally taking the steps to achieve that. This blog will chart my journey and give me something to look back on when I am one discouraged, two where I want to be in my career. So what pray tell do you want to do in the Industry? That my dear Watson is the question. ”

    The blog has driving undertones, I am all about “Finding your Fashion Freeway,” using “Road Maps,” and having “Traveling Music.” I plan to interview people that are working in the Industry and talking about their journey/”Fashion Freeway” I hope that you check it out and like it enough to blog roll it. It’s not even a week old but I hope that it will help someone else find their way to a career in the Fashion Industry the way I plan on it helping me.

  30. Afrobella, I have been praying for a way for my blog to be seen. Here is an excerpt from my welcoming message:

    “Welcome to No Fear, Just DIVA. D-I-V-A stands for Devastatingly Innovative Via Apparel. http://firstthreeinc.blogspot.com/

    I started this blog because I want a real and serious career in the Fashion Industry and I am finally taking the steps to achieve that. This blog will chart my journey and give me something to look back on when I am one discouraged, two where I want to be in my career. So what pray tell do you want to do in the Industry? That my dear Watson is the question. “

  31. PS- for anyone working in the fashion industry or knows someone who does please contact me. My blog has a Road Maps section that helps guide and direct people along the way through the stories of other’s Fashion Freeways.

    Also my blog roll list:

    Afrobella
    The Pop Culture Junkie
    Mane and Chic
    Concrete Loop
    The Fashion Bomb
    -The blog’s creator Claire will be my first feature in my Road Maps section so please check it out later this week. Thank you!

  32. Congrats on coming up to Year 2 and you get better every day!

  33. Davina Emily says:

    Besides your blog, the other blogs i read on a regular are:
    theybf
    concreteloop
    tyronemalone
    Stuff Educated Black People Like (hilarious)

  34. I don’t get much time on here like I used to. I do know you are one of my favorites. I come by here as often as I can, although I don’t comment much. The other site that I am totally hook on is The Fly Guy Chronicles.

    I wish you continuing success.

  35. Since you asked… And it is so gracious of you to want to help the rest of us out–thanks!

    I run two blogs, my personal one,
    Monkey Mind of TiGe
    ; and, I’m a self-taught jewelry/metal artist and I keep a site specific to those experiences at
    Tamra’s Jewelry Design Chronicles
    . Both of my blogs are constantly evolving.

    I have too many that I try to keep up with on a daily basis. My exceptionally long list via Google Reader is a joke; but, there are a select few I read as often as I can:

    Afrobella, of course ;-)


    Bygbaby’s Mindspill


    It’s My It List
    (hilarious photos and commentary about celebrity life)


    Modern Day Gilligan Photoblog
    (Joshua’s photos are phenomenal! He lives in Grenada)


    Tastespotting
    (an amazing blog for wanna-be gourmet cooks-tho the site’s down right now for some reason)


    Morris Berman’s Dark Ages America
    (for those of us who believe America, for the most part, is going the way of Rome…)

    I also read–rather, skim–several others that are key to some specific interests I have.

    Thanks for asking, and congrats on your success as a blogger. I think you would be happy to know that, of the many blogs by people of color that I peek through, there is *always* a link to your blog. Of course I had to go see “just who is this ‘Afrobella’?”–I ended up getting hooked myself!

    I’m adding you to my little-bitty blog roll right now!

  36. I didn’t realize my comment was so long–apologies!

  37. Congratulation on your 2nd blog anniversary. Keep up the good work. I recently began this journey of blogging, it has been quite a journey. The name of my blog site is http://www.glamfabfashion.blogspot.com.

    God bless.

  38. Congratulation on your 2nd blog anniversary. Keep up the good work. I recently began this journey of blogging, it has been quite a journey. The name of my blog site is http://www.glamfabfashion.blogspot.com/

    God bless.

  39. excellentia says:

    is it a coincidence that I was watching qvc (who has some good specials on the products by the way) and ojon had its own hour yesterday! love your blog!

  40. concreteloop is the truth. They deserve recognition!

    *************
    http://lipstank.com

  41. Hey Bella,

    Irie Diva here saying congrats on your upcoming 2nd! I’m preparing for my first and its been an amazing journey as well. I check your site on the regular for beauty secrets and I thank you everytime I do a pre-poo, its been amazing for my hair!!! (even tho im still using the creme crack)

    I’d love to be added to your links…that wud be great! I just loaded up fantabulous collections from Caribbean Fashion Week here in Jamaica, you should check out Claudia Pegus from Trinidad, she was AMAZING!!!!!

    I see Miss Mikelah shouted me out, thanks girl.

    Bless,
    Irie Diva
    FashionOverStyle.NET

  42. Hey Bella,

    I’ve been reading your blog site for over a year and I’ve even won one of your give-aways. Keep fighting the good fight with your spiritually-twinged clairvoyance. You blog has been a success because you have been imperfect with your readers and not self-righteous; as many of our natural sisters can sometimes be. You have really given a voice to black women who dare to live outside of the box by reclaiming their god-given beauty while at the same time arming them with the perfect shade of MAC foundation.

    Blogging and reading blogs are a passion of mine because the varying perspectives and subject material are enough to keep you entertained till the wee hours of the night. Here’s some that I have to read err day:

    dlisted.com
    crunktastical.net
    ybf.com
    mediatakeout.com ( I know shame on me!)
    whataboutourdaughters.com
    blacksnob.blogspot.com

    I’ve also started a conversation blog: http://www.gettogetha.com/blog/
    It will share my passion for great dialogue and living your best life….

    Thanks Bella.

    M.

  43. Thanks Bella! It was my pleasure to feature you…!! As long as you keep up the great work you will continue to inspire others. Thanks again!

  44. Bella you are the top of my daily list! Then I have allaboutthepretty, fashionista, cheapjap, ybf, kayneuniversity, and a couple of other fashion sites.

    Right now I am getting started with my own blog/site and just trying to keep daily.

    http://www.ajanicole.com

    It is all about lifestyle; fashion, home, men, etc. Things I love ;-)

  45. I am really happy to see Concrete Loop getting that love. they are young, hip, fresh & funny!

    One thing strikes a chord with me globally is that often times, the popular Black blogs lack real content & social, political standing.

    I’m just saying.

    Bygbaby

  46. my blog is http://www.loveselfentirely.com
    Just a blog about me accepting me, flaws and all and daily musings from different aspects of my life.

    What I like?

    Here, of course.
    Racialicious
    Gori Girl
    Semi-charmed Wife
    In my heels

    (the last two are more self improvement blogs, which is a HUGE interest of mine, right now)

  47. I know Ive been cited (and linked) on your blog before, but Id love it if youd include me in your blogroll! I read your blog at least a few times a week, and even try some of your suggestions. Im still doing that pre-poo one (after I worked out a few kinks) and today Im wearing a Milani eyeliner you suggested a few months back, and its holding up pretty well in the DC heat and humidity!

    Thanks and keep up the good work!

    L

  48. This is a wonderful thing you’re doing! Your blog is a wealth of great information! Thank you!

  49. Hi Afrobella!,

    My name is Alysia, the Founder/Editor of Truly Beautiful (www.trulybeautifulonline.com), an up and coming beauty blog.

    The mission of Truly Beautiful is to create an interesting and fresh on-line publication, which will help young women of all backgrounds discover their true beauty – inside & out.

    I am just truly starting out and I am trying to network with my fellow bloggers, whom I admire. I have been a fan of your blog for quite some time. I absolutely love your posts about culture, makeup, haircare and everything else.

    As a fellow Caribbean woman, I really want to give you kudos for staying true to yourself and your roots!

    What advice do you have for an up and coming beauty/culture blogger?

    Thanks so much,

    Alysia

    http://www.trulybeautifulonline.com

  50. this post (and all the comments) is going to be like my blog bible / directory…LOL!

    i just started http://www.bonvivantonline.com this january – an atlanta-based site about the ‘good life’ from a bohemian point of view.

    some of my faves are:
    postbourgie.com – down to earth intelligentisa
    grabbingsand.com – another atlantan
    thepeoplesnews.wordpress.com – HILARIOUS!!

    can’t wait to check out all the other recommendations….

    bless,

    k

  51. This post is amazing.

    Wanna add my site to the mix, though: WriteBlack.com, all about books, mostly by black authors.

  52. Hey there! Loved afrobella ever since I got started in reading blogs! I find it inspirational (never thought a beauty blog could be described as inspirational either until Afrobella came along. Keep up the awesome work you’ve been doing.

  53. Hi, i read your blog occasionally and i own a similar one and i was just curious if you get a lot of spam responses? If so how do you stop it, any plugin or anything you can suggest? I get so much lately it’s driving me insane so any help is very much appreciated.

  54. ??? ?? ??? ?? ???? ?? ?? ?? ??? ?????? ?? [url=http://www.buycelinejp.com/]???? ??[/url] ???? ???? ???? ?????????? ?? ?????? ?? ???? ? ?? ?? ??? ??? ? ???
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