My Favourite Blogs #1 – On Serpentine Shores

When I think about why I started blogging, one of the main reasons was down to this lovely lady. We were in the same class at university and although we weren’t close until the end of our three years, she was always one of those elusively beautiful, calm and fascinating people who everyone wished they were more like.

Alex started her blog On Serpentine Shores whilst we were still finishing our degrees, but I only became properly aware of it once I’d left Cornwall and working full time meant I needed some inspiration. It provided me with the perfect dose of sandy shores, wild woodland and the simple Cornish life that I so crave. Expect beautifully styled photos filled with natural DIYs, gorgeous outfits and enviable day trips to some of the best landscapes in the Southwest – all with a down-to-earth simplistic viewpoint. She’s inspired me from the beginning and every post feels passionately thought out. I thought I’d let her tell you her story herself and give you the chance to find out a bit about who Alex is (and what vegetable she’d describe herself as because…you know…)


Tell me a little bit about your blog?

On Serpentine Shores started as a bit of fun. I was in my final year of university and feeling creatively starved. After some encouragement from a housemate to start a blog and advice from Briar Rose’s Megan McMinn on where to begin (and after reading week procrastination set in) On Serpentine Shores was born.

A messy, creative process there to humour my loves for writing and photography; OSS has led to paid work, new friends and some unforgettable memories. It’s made my post-uni transition pretty smooth. And whilst half the time I’m reasonably embarrassed by the egotism of the whole venture, I just can’t bring myself to regret it.

What is your favourite thing about blogging?

Ahhh this one’s so hard! It’s gotta be a mix of the buzz I get from being creative and all the doors that open in response; the opportunities that arise and the people you meet along the way. I love making content, but the tangible “real word” things that happen as a result can make it a real adventure.


Describe your ultimate meal (starter, main and pud)?

I’m gonna go with a weird Mexico meets the Mediterranean mezze board to start with. So we’re talking a platter loaded with olives and herby pull-apart bread and goat’s cheese and guacamole and sweet potato mash and a little beetroot thrown in there too.

Mains I’d go for a really thin and crispy pizza, topped with spinach and caramelised red onion and lots cheese of any variety and pine nuts.

Finally I’m thinking of some messy ice cream concoction for dessert, with soft warm cookie pieces, topped with salted caramel gelato, blueberries and crushed pistchios, drizzled with dulce de leche and sprinkled with cinnamon.

What vegetable do you think best describes you?

This is really hard. I’ve always thought of myself as more of a fruit-kinda-girl, but I guess I’m gonna have to go for an aubergine. For a vegetable they’re a pretty neat colour and I’m that kind of shape and I just can’t see myself growing somewhere that isn’t warm.

In a film about your life, what would three of the tracks on the soundtrack be and why?

Do You Remember – Jack Johnson

For me Brushfire Fairytales has got to be one of the best albums ever made and this is probably my favourite track off it. I can see this track being the soundtrack to a kind of childhood/teenage montage – full of beauty and heartbreak and nostalgia and “coming of age”.

Amercia by Simon and Garkfunkel or Stay Gold by First Aid Kit

I’m cheating by choosing  two songs here, but these songs kinda sum up life right now; life post-uni, trying to navigate adulthood in the “real world” with an inch of grace and dignity. Trying to be independent but still eating ice cream for tea too often and crying after meeting with mean clients. Where life seems to come together and fall to pieces in equal parts.

Better People – Xavier Rudd

I love listening to this song. It’s gives me that strong “home” feeling in my chest, like you just want to nod in agreement with it all. I feel it musically represents kind of where I’m hoping to go and who I’m hoping to

Tell me a funny story about something that’s happened to you?

I am regrettably not a very funny person.

When I was about 8-9 years old I was in an all-girls little-league netball team. I was struggling to fit in or make friends, especially because one girl in particular was very clear about enforcing her ideas of who was okay and who wasn’t. Long story short I was encouraged to change the way I looked to something a little closer to a Nike version of Barbie.

In response I cut my hair “boy short” and gelled in up in spikes and continued to do so till I was about 12 (being mistaken for a boy in Disneyland convinced me to go back to my traditional bob). Still this allowed for other girls to be a little more “themselves” and looking back it makes me giggle – don’t know if that counts?!

If you could have a superpower what would it be and why?

It’d probably be a power linked to communication and artistic expression.

What drives me crazy more than most things is my inability to capture exactly what’s going on inside me in – whether through writing or photography.

So I’d like to be able to not only completely capture the ideas I have, but be able to communicate them to other people on a deep level – y’know like be able to really get inside their hearts and minds.

I just kinda feel like words and photos are the best thing I have to “save the world” – so that’s what I’d like to be superhumanly good at.

What’s the best piece of advice you’d give a new blogger?

There’s so SO much you can learn online about blogging – through Pinterest and YouTube and a bazillion blogs offering how-to’s, tutorials and lists of things to do. The one thing they can’t teach you is how to be you.

I know, I know it sounds so cliché, but no one else can bring to this big bustling interwagon what you can. Plus it’s easy to get side tracked by those you admire – or  those other’s admire – it’s obvious that many are trying to replicate what certain “big bloggers” are doing.

So get a firm grasp on who you are and what you want to blog about – I built a pinterest board and made a soundtrack – cause my mind kinda works in images and music. But know yourself well and do your own thing and in time learn to do it well; concentrate on that. If people stumble across your blog and you’re telling your story with passion, chances are they’ll want to be a part of it.

on-serpentine-shoresAlex’s blog really is a continuing work of passionate art, and if I haven’t already managed to persuade you to head over and check it out, you can do HERE. A big thank you goes to Alex for providing the brilliant answers and beautiful photographs- hope you’ve enjoyed!