- Introduce yourself shortly.
Ciaoo! My name is Marii-Heleen Penu and I’m a 21-year-old girl from Tallinn who loves to explore the world, jump on planes and write about all of my adventures on my travel blog. I tend to dream a lot but also work hard to achieve my goals. I do yoga and meditation on a daily basis, which both keep me motivated to be productive throughout the day. I adore books (Good. Heavy. Books) and educating myself. Furthermore, I enjoy spending time with my loved ones.
- Tell us three facts about you.
-I’m busy most of the time and I love it.
-I actually love airports, haha (though most of us hate them)
-I’m obsessed with the ocean and the waves, I could live in it and obviously I love surfing.
- How did you start with blogging and what were the main struggles?
To be honest, it started out pretty randomly. Before everything, I said I would never run a blog but then one month last year so many people started asking me where to go for holidays, how to find cheap plane tickets, which areas to visit in different countries and I got tired of answering everyone separately. It was so much easier to write everything down online and later on send them the link to my blog. The next thing I know I started getting offers from brands for paid collaborations and that’s when I realized I could make this idea into a successful business. That I could actually have a voice out there.
The first struggles were definitely getting to know the “blogging world” itself. The industry is extremely competitive and to stand out you need to find your niche. The “insiders” don’t really take the “outsiders” in right away, so you need to be patient and work really hard to create good quality content to blend in. In addition, I would say the hardest part is growing your audience. Constant posting, being active and most important, being yourself are the biggest must-do, I would say.
- Tell a bit about your relations with fashion and your activities.
Well, fashion has always been a part of my life. I’ve loved to design and create my own clothes ever since I was a little girl and now I’m just lucky that I can work together with my favorite brands all over the world. Sometime next year I will hopefully launch my very first tiny clothing line too, but that’s still a small secret. It was never my purpose to start writing about fashion but one day somehow it just became a part of my blog. The next thing I knew I was attending the first Fashion Week of my life in Milan and having champagne with the most powerful women in the world, such as Naomi Campbell at the Versace show. By now, I’ve been to four different fashion weeks in three different countries. Probably my next ones will be New York, Paris and Milan again next year. Of course there’s still a long way to go but right now I’m more than grateful for how far I have come. And I won’t stop until I make it.
- Three basic fashion tips that everyone should have in mind.
Haha, I love this question!
– First of all, wear whatever you like because that’s what makes you special!
– Secondly, if you want to follow the latest trends, read well-known magazines and try to find similar clothes from online stores, since most of them are from luxury designer brands and they tend to be really expensive.
– Thirdly, black and navy blue are the best colors for business meetings, a tip to remember
– And lastly, if you have a bad hair day, just wear a hat everywhere, haha
- What are your favorite travel destinations and why?
Oh, that’s a really hard question. Every single destination has a special place in my heart but to list my top 3, I would say:
Los Angeles, USA: since the trip was like a movie, I loved every single corner of that city, there was just something magical about it…. Biking on Venice beach with my friends, seeing the Hollywood sign, hiking above the clouds on the Malibu vineyard peaks, that’s all I need to say.
The Philippines: the best crew I’ve ever had to travel with, the most amazing wild lagoons and beaches I’ve seen, as I said in my blog, it was like bucket listing my life on every single step I took (haha, not to include the part where I almost got robbed and missed 2 flights in a row).
Maldives and Sri Lanka: one word – speechless. I had never seen as crystal clear water as in Maldives and seeing the illuminating sand (which is actually a fluorescence plankton) with my own eyes was also something to remember. Sri Lanka had one of the best waves for surfing. I enjoyed it because of the rare and wild nature. Did you know that it’s only an hour away from Male (the capital of Maldives) by plane? Much recommended!
- What’s always in your suitcase when you travel?
As I always say, camera in one hand, passport in another. But honestly, also 3 cameras, 5 batteries/banks, lenses, a good book, laptop, about 145627 messy wires and SD-cards and bikinis. Haha, well, depends on where I’m travelling to (I either pack bikinis or the city attire). And not to forget my headphones.
- If you could have any superpower, what would you choose to have?
Firstly, I would teleport myself anywhere in the world whenever I feel like travelling and secondly, I would contribute to helping all the people in need and courage everyone else to do the same.
- Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I would love to have achieved my goals, such as I see myself as a successful “blogger” and a business owner who has a bachelor’s and master’s degree in 10 years. I wish to launch my first book, give a speech at Oxford University, launch my clothing line and do so many more things. I wish to have a voice that counts, that I could actually make a difference and have that freedom to start whatever business I want. I wish I had a dog too, haha, and a family of my own. That’s all I know now. I don’t need to know how to get there, I just need to know what my final destination is.
- Your favorite quote.
There are so many!
“Breathing dreams like air” and “Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it.”
Translator: Marii-Heleen Penu
Editor: Kart Mättikas
Photo: Marii-Heleen Penu