December 7th, 2014, after about one week of researching, discussions with my late husband and other friends, I bought the domain of Color and Grace and posted my first blog on www.colorandgrace.com. Below is one of the earliest photos for the blog post. I had no clue of photo editing. I was so shy so all the photos were taken either in my front yard or back yard. And I had no clue what to write!
In the past 4 years, there was one frequently asked question: “What inspired you to start Color and Grace?”. So here is the answer. 🙂
I was born and raised in the rural village of Northern China. The weather is very similar with Michigan. My parents worked super hard but we still ended up struggling with no money, no food and barely hold on a straw roof house. I know this description is totally out of your imagination, so below is a similar house like where I was growing up. About my early life, you can read more at ABOUT ME.
I have no any photos to show you about our house because we didn’t have the money to take any pictures. Anyway, when you are struggling for just to survive, fashion is probably the last thing you can think about. In fact, I didn’t even know fashion is a thing until when I was 13 years old. One day, my mom took me to a local tailor shop to make my first dress. When the tailor asked us what the dress I would like to have, I had no clue. Then he handed me a magazine with all the beautiful models wearing so many pretty dresses. That was the moment I was like “Oh my gosh!” I felt my heart just skipped a beat! Lol!
For a poor teenage girl, all the clothes I had was my older brother’s hand-me-downs. But it never stopped me dreaming that someday I will be just like those women I saw on that magazine. I also had a really wild dream that I want to be a fashion designer to design the most beautiful pieces for me and other women! I got accepted by a fashion design college in Beijing, but we couldn’t afford the tuition. The same time, I got a full scholarship from a local teaching college to become a teacher. The choice was quite obvious.
Even in my college years, I was still that same ugly duckling wearing man’s clothes, had super short boy’s hairstyle. I knew I had a beautiful inside, but my outside just doesn’t match. After I graduated, I ran to Shanghai to start my new life. The same story again that I had to survive first. Finally, after I turned 30 years old. I decided I am going to focus on how to bring out the beauty I see inside of myself. My belief was this, if I can graduate from college, run a big department, why not make myself look more beautiful and stylish? So I had my second attempt to do something with fashion. I opened an online boutique in China for about 2 years before I moved to the U.S.
It seems like my life was a strange circle. Not long after I moved to America, my late husband got laid off. So I decided to go back to school to get my teaching certificate. We need to survive first, right? Then I turned 40 years old in 2014. You know that feeling when a passion was just burning inside of you and no matter how many times that you tried to kill it, it just will not die? That was the fashion passion for me. Lol! I decided to do something about my dream since our life was pretty steady and comfortable at that time. But again, I didn’t know how to draw or how to sew, it was quite difficult to become a fashion designer. Around fall, 2014, I started to read a few articles about fashion bloggers. Then one day I suddenly told my late husband “I think I can do that too!” Lol!
Ok, it is a quite long story. Lol! Color and Grace is not just a blog for my personal dairy anymore. It has shaped my style, grown from a fashion blog to a lifestyle blog. It became the platform for me to share my stories and leave a positive impact on this world. It also was my personal therapy treatment during the Living With Cancer and Life After Loss period of my life. It is still the main platform for me to share my newest Being The Best Of Me stories. I am very grateful that I was able to turn my blogging to a full-time job last year. I know there will be many great years of Color and Grace to come!
I picked the photos from 2014 to 2018, you can see the differences between my styles. 😉 Thank you so much for your longtime support!! I am running giveaways for each week till end of this year to celebrate the 4th anniversary and the holidays. Make sure to enter it on my Instagram account!
Photo credit: Grace Liang
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