A few times when I have mentioned Pinterest, some people have commented that they don’t really ‘get it’ or know how to use it. It’s easy when you’re a blogger and friends with lots of bloggers, to think everybody is doing something or au fait with something new on the internet, but it seems some of you want a kick start and a few pointers on Pinterest so I’m more than happy to oblige! (Of course if you just have no interest in Pinterest, feel free to move right along to your next favourite blog read!)
Tip: As well as the pictures I have included to illustrate my points here, click through all the links for examples of what I am talking about.
So what is Pinterest?
Try to think of it as a virtual scrap book. Did you make scrapbooks when you were younger? Have you ever made a book of travel memories? Cut out an recipe in the newspaper to remind you to try something later? Kept a page out of a magazine to remember a room scheme? Well essentially Pinterest is exactly the same, but online and anything that reduces the paper clutter around my house is a welcome addition in my opinion. Because it’s an American idea, they liken it to a pinboard, hence Pinterest.
How do I get started with Pinterest?
Firstly, create an account and log in. Next you need to create some ‘boards’. Pinterest will start you off with a few and you can either delete these or run with them, and of course add your own. Think of these as folders, or pages in your digital scrapbook, groups of things that go together. You might choose to make a board of fashion you have seen for your winter wardrobe, a travel bucket list or just a ton of cute puppies. You don’t have to make all your boards now, you might find later on that you want to start collecting images of something different and everytime you ‘pin’ an image, you have the option to create a new board for the image.
The next part is a bit like Facebook, you need to find some people to follow. (I’ll explain why in a minute…) Pinterest allows you to connect via Twitter or Facebook and find your friends who are also on Pinterest. If you happen to have super stylish friends, then this might be the way forward, but I don’t tend to follow many of my friends for 2 reasons. Firstly, Pinterest is about visual inspiration and you want to see the very best of it. Find your favourite bloggers who are already famous for selecting beautiful imagery and let them do the hard work for you. (You can find my Pinterest account here.) Secondly, most people use Pinterest to plan stuff, and so it kind of takes the wind out of your friends sails when they tell you about their plans for the new kitchen and you’ve already seen it all on their Pinterest board!
How do I ‘pin’ things? Again, there’s lots of answers to this question.
For starters, this is where those friends you followed above come in. Every time you log into Pinterest, just like on a Facebook wall there’s a page of all the pins the people you follow have pinned. You can browse them and repin them to your boards. Some people don’t do anything other than this and are perfectly happy. If you follow enough people, you’ll have more than enough inspiration to play with.
Tip: Here are 5 top ‘Pinners’ to get you started:
Decor – Kimberley (Redlilocks)
Style – Kirsty (A Safe Mooring)
Fashion – Kimberley (Eat Sleep Wear)
Events and Style Inspiration – Michelle & Vicki (PocketfulofDreams)
Beauty - The Beauty Department
Another great way to use Pinterest is to pin something you have seen elsewhere on the internet. You might see something on a blog for example, a hotel on a travel agents site, or that recipe in the newspaper online.
Next week, I’ll explain more of how to pin and also why I love Pinterest so much (i.e. what I use it for.) For now, if you haven’t already got one, get yourself an account and dive right in!