Behind the Blog

Two years ago today, a very timid message went out to the world: To whatever curious eyes may be peering in, I’m here to share a few crafts, nothing more, nothing less. No name, no age, none of those personal details that might flesh out this weak voice. A few brief sentences would accompany rudimentary photographs, the occasional online pattern may be divulged, and that would be it, nothing more for another day or two. Through many shaky posts, it was uncertain whether this unknown other might continue to whisper through the keyhole.

But somehow, by some incredible miracle, here I am. I don’t believe I’ve formally introduced myself once through this entire wild ride, so Hello, it’s nice to meet you. My name is Hannah, I just turned 19 years old, and today is my second blogiversary. Can you believe it? I sure can’t. Making the leap from no one, absolutely nothing at all in just two short years, this blog has changed me for the better. Not just the blog itself, but more to the point, you: You lovely people who have been reading, commenting, trying my recipes and patterns, encouraging me to break from my re-enforced, bullet-proof shell. It’s impossible to deny that you guys out there have shaped the person that I am today, and the path that I am headed down, looking toward the future. Thank you all, a million times thank you. If I could bake a cupcake for every last reader out there I would, but my stats have soared from my early numbers of maybe 30 page views a day, to over 3,000.

This picture I’ve included was taken in May 2007 by my good friend Nancy (Thank you so much for your patience! I’m still not good about being in pictures) and demonstrates my usual setup. This is exactly how I shot the pictures of My Sweet Vegan– In my kitchen, a poster board is propped up against the back of my laptop, house lights are turned on or off accordingly, and I would snap away with my little point-and-shoot. Now I do have a new and improved model, but everything else has stayed the same. I just wanted to illustrate this little “secret” for you, because the truth is that I don’t have any secrets about how I put together my blog or book: I simply love what I do, put a little thought into the presentation, and the rest follows.

90 thoughts on “Behind the Blog

  1. Hannah, this post made my day – I’m so proud of you for your decision to REALLY introduce yourself, and reveal the girl behind the camera :0) Happy 2nd bloggiversary – here’s to more fabulous years of your blog, and your photography/baking successes!!

  2. Congratulations on your second Blogaversary!
    You are a true success story. I am your age, and I could never imagine myself with a published cookbook. I bow to you.

  3. I remember the day I discovered you: I was sick in bed for a week, and all I did was browse the web for crochet patterns between naps. I found your crochet hot dog pattern first, and I laughed out loud. I still do, with every new silly story you create for your creatures.

    It’s been fun finding out more and more about you and your art! (It also took me forever to realize YOU wrote My Sweet Vegan – my new favorite cookbook, and I’m not even vegan!)

    Congratulations on all your success!

  4. I don’t normally comment but I just wanted to say Happy blogiversary! Thanks so much for sharing your patterns and recipes! I always enjoy reading your blog. You’re very talented! You’re quite a motivation for me :)

    And p.s. I LOVE your outfit :)

  5. Hey, congrats on your 2nd year of blogging. I love your blog, especially the stories about all the creatures you “encounter”! Thanks for posting a picture of yourself. It’s nice to put a face with the recipes, patterns, and giggles.

  6. Congratulations on your second blogiversary! Your blog is one of the first blogs that I really started reading. You always seem to be able to put a smile on my face no matter the mood I’m in. You are so talented and such an inspiration!

  7. Congrats on the anniversary! Your photographs and attention to detail always put me in awe.

    I use the same set up, poster board and natural sunlight. I, too, used a point and shoot until I got a nicer model.

  8. Wow – great shot (thanks to your friend Nancy) – you look adorable as usual and I love your outfit. It was neat to show you actually doing something blog related in a photo of yourself here, Hannah. Glad to see you continuing to make great strides. It does get easier with time too! I wish you a very wonderful second blogoversary with many many more! Thanks for sharing the “secret” too. It will certainly keep us non-photographers encouraged. :)

  9. O.O WOW I was wanting to see a pic of you hehe Your very pretty love the hair and want your arm thingys ^_^

    Gratzi on your blogiversary ^_~ and on turning 19 :D


  10. Congratulations, Hannah. There is nothing bitter about your blog, just sweet :). I take pics the same way too. There is this ironing table in place of your dining table :D

  11. Congratulation on your 2nd anniversary!! Enjoy reading your blog. The first recipes I tried were the cheese scones and frittata. They were delicious! I also just got your recipe book. I love turtles so had to try the Turtle Shortbread Wedges first. Just finished eating the last piece. My husband also shared them a t work and they all liked them. I do have a question – can the sugar be cut down in the caramel topping and still have it set up? Keep up the great work and much success as you pursue to goals in school.

  12. Wow, two years!! That’s awesome! I certainly hope there are many more years to come. Oh, and I think that is so cool that you revealed a little bit about yourself and also the fact that what you are doing isn’t complicated and you’re not using fancy tools to put it together (though I would still like to learn more about web designing), very encouraging for others!! But then again, you definitely have some serious talent…. keep it up Hannah!

  13. Happy Blogiversary! You truly are an inspiration. I love reading about your sweets and crafts and the cute little stories that go along with them. I look forward to many more awesome posts! =)

  14. Hi Hannah! I’ve been lurking for a couple of weeks but haven’t said hi yet :) I can’t wait to get My Sweet Vegan, and I’m so in love with the sweet knit friends you post on here! Happy blogiversary!

  15. Hannah, it is so lovely to see you!! And I had no idea you were only 19, my goodness! Your writing ability, your craft skills, your cooking talent … how does one so young possess that? You amaze me!

    Happy Blogaversary to you!!

  16. Hannah -I discovered your gem of a blog at -your adorable avitar of the strawberry cupcake drew me in & I’ve been a dedicated fan since. You’re an amazingly clever writer and your photography is beautiful -for such a young age -you will certainly go far. I look forward to many more years of reading your blog and hearing more about where you are going. We’re all hooked on you now :) You should feel very proud and Happy Blogiversary!!

  17. Hello Hannah! It is lovely to see you. I’d done the maths and worked out your age, but it took me a good couple of months as your writing is so insightful and engaging! And you are so pretty too – more shots of you please :D I love your style too – very unique.

    Happy bloggiversary and here’s to all the years ahead – yay!

  18. Glad to meet you Hanna, and happy Blogiversary! I love reading your blog every time you post, your pictures are beautiful and your writing is very inspirational!

  19. Congratulations, Hannah! Your blog is wonderful, as is My Sweet Vegan, and the fact that you shot your photos that way is a true testament to your talent (I haven’t had the same success with that method just yet!!).

    Continued success and years of blogging to you!

  20. Nice to meet you. I found your blog just a couple weeks ago and have come to visit often ever since. Thanks for sharing. I love it all.

  21. Hannah, I am so incredibly proud of you. Your accomplishments with your blog, your book, and your life are beyond amazing.

    Maybe you’re not good about being in pictures, but what you can’t see objectively is that you’re good IN pictures. Not only was I honored to photograph you, but I enjoyed the heck out of doing it because you’re a fantastic subject. Plus, I now have a visual record of your top secret cupcake baking and frosting methods! (Insert evil laugh here.)

    Happy Blogiversary, and many, many more!

  22. Hannah! I can’t believe you posted your picture, but I’m happy that you did!

    You are an amazing young woman and I wish you the best of luck… although, I really don’t need to do that. You’ve already accomplished more than most can dream about; and as someone said, you will go far. I just hope to be privileged enough to be a witness.

    Happy Blogiversary!

  23. Yay! Happy 2nd blogiversary! I think you’re way too modest, everything you do is fantastic and I’ve always loved looking at your blog, it makes me smile :)

  24. Congratulations and Happy birthday, I really enjoy your blog, its nice to be able to put a face to a name/blog. Good luck and much happiness going forward, keep up the good work.

  25. I cannot believe how talented you are. You are an amazing young woman!

    I only found your blog this morning (thanks to a link to your pop-tart phone cozy, which I shall try to make this weekend) and I am blown away by your talent.

    Happy blogiversary – I shall be an avid reader from now on!

    PS I love your outfit – where did you get it?!

  26. Congratulations on 2 years of great blogging. And also Happy Birthday! I found your blog just a few months ago through someone else’s website. So glad I did. It has become one of my favorite blogs to read. Blog on …..

  27. I’m pretty new to the blogging scene, but since stumbling into this rabbit hole of creativity I’ve felt so inspired, and this blog right here is high on my list of ones to thank for that. So, thank you!

  28. Hannah, may I add my congrats to you (late as usual)
    WOW I am SO impressed that you have been doing all this at such a young age..
    I really really enjoy reading your blog and hope that you will be blogging for years to come!

  29. Congratulations! I’ve found my way to you by way of another Hannah.

    I have to say I think I’ll be adding you to my favorites because from what little I have read and seen you are an amazing young woman. The talent is phenomenal as is the words. Keep up the good work. :)

  30. Happy blog-versary! :) Thanks for sharing your photo taking secret. I’ve never thought of propping up poster board and taking photos. And I love your outfit!

  31. Hoorah for Hannah!
    Thanks for the formal introduction. It’s nice to meet you as well. I have been reading and loving your blog for quite some time now. Your luminous spirit shines through, and it’s what makes your blog one of my favorites. Also, I LOVE this picture… it’s so fun to see you in your lab! Congrats on your new camera. Yeah! Nothing quite as fun as a new gadget.
    Keep on keeping on!

  32. A little bit late but I also want to congratulate you with your blogaversary!

    Nice picture! I never realized that you are that young! You are very talented!!! I am looking forward to the logs that will follow.

  33. Thank you so much for sharing that. I used to have guessing games with my friend trying to figure out how old you were (not to be stalker-ish). We were truly amazed when we (after looking though many of your posts over again) figured you just graduated from high school, going off into the world. For us, now being juniors, really looked up to that. Then I read the little bio of you from your new book..amazing. I’ve been reading your blog for sometime and you are the one who inspired me to become vegan. Sometimes there isn’t always someone to believe in, let me be the one to tell you that you certainty touched your readers. Please let no one discourage you from that.

  34. Hello Hanna,

    19 years old, ablog and acookbook…WOW. Thank you for sharing your suprising profile with us. Indeed you are genuis young foodbloger.

    best of luck

  35. Happy Blogiversary Hannah! Posterboard? I’ll have to give that a shot. ;) I love your patterns and photos and the silly little stories you come up with. Keep up the good work!

  36. happy blogiversary! i just realized that there were pictures of you up on your book site, too (and an interview!). you’re such a cutie. : ) i hope you have many more lovely blogiversaries in the future.

  37. Dear Hannah,

    You are the most beautiful thing in the world :)


    PS I’m so proud of you, you’re turning into the beautiful, confident girl we all always knew you would be <3 You’re amazing, and I love you.

  38. Nice to meet You Hannah. For some reason, I really didn’t expect this blog to belong to a 19 year old girl/woman. You seem so mature in you writing, and even in the layout of your blog. It’s a compliment of course. You should be very proud of yourself. I raise my glass of milk (because I don’t drink alcohol) to you, to your blog and to many years of blogging. Another thing that I’ve noticed on your picture: look closely to the window, and you will see the shadow of your plant drawing a face. I can see the eye and eyebrow. The person looks peacefully sleeping.

    I think that says it all! :)

  39. Hello, Hannah. How wonderful to meet a little more of my very first Vegan Pal :) Thank you for creating, maintaining and continuing to love developing your blog. Your posts have inspired me in ways I can’t describe.

  40. What a delightful photograph! I’ve recently discovered your blog and haven’t read any of the archives. So I was very surprised to discover your age. Wha a lovely young woman you are.

    I started to write a post on my blog about your new whale and it turned into a tribute piece. Even though it’s a new blog with almost no readers, I thought I should at least be polite enough to let you know I wrote about you!

    Wow. That sounds sorta creepy and stalkerish – I’ll remove the post if you are uncomfortable.

  41. First of Congratulations, not only on a blog well written and read but on your very own cookbook. I am startled to discover your age as here on the internet we find that we put personalities with certain ages and groups, but not so surprised that I would call myself shocked. I am more than happy to know more about you. I love your blog and though I don’t post a comment often, i throughly enjoy coming here.

    Your blog is an inspiration and I’m enamored with it.

    By the way, beautiful outfit! And thats just about how I set up to do photo shoots too ^-~

  42. Happy Belated-Belated Birthday. You take great pictures, stop dodging the cameras. Anyway, your blog is great. You are very crafty and great around the kitchen.

  43. Hannah, I’m so happy for you — Happy Blogiversary!

    I haven’t seen your blog in about 5 months, due to adversity, and I’m blown away by your cookbook! BTW, now living about 40 miles south from where you took that Golden Gate pic last year…

    Congrats and much success.


  44. Hi Hannah, I’m just marvelling over your the beautiful pictures you take here… I’ve recently started my own blog and reading yours makes me wonder if someday I will be as successful as you have been. I adore your recipes (I never knew so much vegan baking could be possible before I stumbled across your blog!) You are truly an inspiration. Thank you.

Leave a Reply