A rambling entry about the blog naming process...

So, here we are at the new blog.

And it's called Gems.

Obviously I got the idea for this from the Gems of the Week posts I did at Where the Lovely Things Are (and will continue to do here).

I went with it because it was super-short & super-simple and I thought to myself: "There's no way you can get sick of this". Of course, you can get sick of ANYTHING: limonata is my favorite drink but after a couple (dozen?) cans I want something else. But I'll definitely be happy with it for at least a few years. I'm guessing.

It took me a long time to make a blog name decision, though.

First, I considered going the actual-name-as-blog-title route. You can't get sick of your own name! Well, you can - but it would be pretty damn hard to change it. In the end I decided against it, I'm going to be using this space to share the work of others: if the blog title was my own name it wouldn't make a lot of sense. Vetoed.

So, I put together a list of other people's blog names I enjoy -

The Aviary / Candy Castle - I like that these make the blog a place. "I found ____ over at The Aviary today".

Anne Louise Likes - This is along the lines of the actual-name-as-blog-title thing, but with "likes" added on. I also enjoy that it's LITERAL. I like to be literal with my blog titles (see - Illustrated Ladies, Colorful Homes, etc.). But that was part of the WtLTA problem: I'd be asking myself, "Should I post this?!?! It isn't a 'lovely thing' though..... you can't post that, Mallory" I'm insane.

Bonjour Johanna / Miss Moss - Name involved in the title in some way.

Fancy Fine - Ashley does something interesting, because her blog title is Fancy Fine, but the web address is her actual name. So if she wanted to change Fancy Fine to something else she could do so SUPER-easily. Plus, Fancy Fine in and of itself is a nice title.

All This Happinessbutter and brassfieldguidedLength x Wit / oh, hello there / So on and so forth / thank you, ok / etc. - I like all these because they aren't literal. At all. The opposite of Where the Lovely Things Are. What will you find at a blog called thank you, ok? Who knows! Your content isn't dictated by your title.

I thought I was definitely going to go the non-literal route, but I had such a hard time thinking of something that didn't already have an air of "you could get sick of this" to it. I went through my favorite songs trying to look for phrases I could single out, I looked at my old list of favorite words (oh yes, I used to keep an actual list of favorite words), I thought about book or film references.... 

The end result of this process was a non-decision to name my blog "lobster". 

HA! I mean, I still think that would be kind of great. I love the word lobster and I love lobsters as creatures of the sea, but... it would be a rather strange.

None of the other options passed the would-you-want-to-tell-someone-you-just-met-that-blog-title test though. Yeah, in the end I decided against lobster, but if I'd been out some night and talking to a guy who asked me if I had a blog and I answered - "Yes! Lobster!".... I would've been completely fine with that. 

(They might've thought I was a total weirdo but that would've been THEIR LOSS. But also accurate because I am a total weirdo.)

My literal tendencies won out.... in an acceptable way. I'll never be reticent to admit that my blog is called Gems - it's too simple to be embarrassing. And it's literal because I plan to post "gems" here. Gems meaning awesome things and artwork and the such. But "gems" is more all-encompassing than "lovely" was. If I'm taking the time to post about something, I'll obviously consider it to be a gem, but I may not have necessarily classified it as "lovely". 

Blah blah blah. Is anyone still reading this?

Once I decided on Gems the only issue was getting the url. Gems.com was taken, so was gemsblog.com and gems-blog.com. I thought about gemsgemsgems.com because that would make the process of typing the url almost like an incantation (when you finish typing a gem appears on your keyboard!) but even THAT was already claimed! To add another gems seemed excessive and I had no interest in having a .net or whatever, so that's how I got to lookatthesegems.com. Which makes the blog even more literal, but by the time I shelled out my 10 bucks to own the url for a year I didn't even care anymore. 

So here we are. And here we'll stay. 

Eventually this blog will be accompanied by another tumblr I'm going to use for more personal and/or writing-centric things (because those are the only sort of posts that don't fit within my obsessive adherence to my literal blog name - those posts wouldn't be "gem-y"). I'll be sure to let you know when I start that. Not that you'd necessarily care, but - maybe. I mean, this rambling was obviously SO ENTRANCING that the idea of a blog devoted to more of it must be exciting you! Right?!! Haaaaa.

Back to the gems.


  1. i love when you ramble. it's the best. it makes me feel all normal and stuff (cuz i ramble).

    1. hahaha I'm glad I'm not alone / you appreciate it.

  2. I love the new name! It seems so perfectly right for the posts you do. Looking forward to continuing to follow all of your finds - they truly are gems!

  3. Ok Miss Mallory, you and I need to have a conversation. 1) LOVE the new blog name and look! Love love! 2) I've been following along with you for awhile now, and I don't think I've properly said hello (have I?) and expressed that we have a DEEP love of Kid Lit in common. I wanted to study it in grad school as well. Instead I went to law school. (Boo.) My blog is mostly about Kid Lit and Everything Else I Think is Awesome. (That would be quite a blog title eh?)

    I loved reading your delightful posts about what led to the name change etc!

    1. Thanks, Melissa! I return the hello & I'm happy to find someone else who shares my kid lit love! Now I'll go check out your blog.

  4. gorgeous facelift. your content's always so wonderful and you should feel stellar about the name. great post :)

  5. Do you have a "subscribe via email" option?

    1. i just added one! right over there on the sidebar ------>

  6. Haha this post was fantastic. I love your ramblings and I agree, lobster would make a cool blog.
    Sincerely, fellow weirdo

  7. Awesome! Awesome! Awesome! Love it! It's tough this blog naming business, I liken it to naming your baby (don't have one, but I'm guessing it would come close... hehe) I care! I love rambling, I want to see this tumblr of yours when it comes to fruition. Exciting!!

    1. thanks, allira! & i agree on the baby front. i'm obsessed with collecting names for future dogs. i have at least 50 names on a list, and it makes me sad to think i'll never have enough dogs to use them all on! i guess i'll have to get fish.

  8. Hah, I'm flattered and happy that you like my blog name because I've had many similar thoughts about changing it! In my mind I think of it as "length by width" instead of "by wit," and if I, the blog owner, can't say/think it as written, maybe it's not the right blog name for me? But I'm attached the "wit" part, so it stays for now. Unless I can think of another horrible pun.

    I loved reading this post, as well as the one you left on your previous blog explaining the move to this one. Your love of children's literature and the associated illustrators and artists was very meaningful to me, because, again, I have a very similar attachment that has only gotten stronger and more complex as I have gotten older.

    Ahh, it's seems like nearly every comment I leave here is along the lines of, "yes! me, too!"

    Names are important, as are ramblings, so I'm super looking forward to this ramble-centric tumblr.

  9. Thank you for your comment, Liza!

    I have such a love hate relationship with puns. I love them in (many) blog titles (like yours), but I loathe them when used in (most) real-life store titles. Particularly hair salons.

    And lots of times when I've mentioned / via-ed your blog in the past I've just called it Length by Width accidentally. I noticed that as I transferred some blog posts over to this blog.

    And I'm glad that SOMEONE will read the tumblr. Even if it's only you and perhaps 5 other people.

  10. soo... I will remeber that you change the blog here :]

  11. Oh love it Mallory! Hooray for new beginnings...

    Looking forward to many, many gems :)

    Oh and thanks for the mention xx

  12. well, I have to say that I'm a fan of your rambling, too.

    I've gone through phases of wanting to change my blog name. My problem is that nobody knows how to pronounce it, or when I meet someone new and they ask for my blog name, when I tell them, they always always always say, "What?"

    But I'm pretty sure I won't change it, because I'm too scared of losing followers and it will be torturous (as you know) to think of a new name.

  13. I love the new name! I know what you mean about the connotations of the word 'lovely'. It either sounds v posh or a bit twee to me. But I love your blog whatever it's called. I named mine quickly and randomly and now I sort of regret it, whenever I tell people what it's called I feel like it sounds slightly remedial in some way.

  14. Great new name! It all looks great too. Hooray! I've really enjoyed reading about how you got tired of the WTLTA name and how you came by this one actually, as I (whisper it) actually really hate my blog's name too, so I've found it all quite inspiring! Lobster is a good option....


Thanks for your comment you wonderful person you.