Eliza’s Instagram page, @whenelizabethreads, is full of fashion, books, and welcoming warm tones.
Her photos have a type of vintage or cottagecore feel to them, and she describes her captions and stories as “just a little chaotic!” The Instagram account is so lighthearted and pretty, and you’ll definitely want to follow Eliza once you get to know her.
Join us on our latest Bookstagrammer of the Week feature as we talk all things bookish with Eliza!
Eliza’s bookstagram has only been consistent for a little over a year, but she’s already spectacular at capturing the perfect aesthetic photo. “I have actually had this account for a few years,” she said, “and it has undergone many renovations, but I started the account @whenelizabethreads properly in February of 2020 and it’s by far one of the best things I’ve done!”
She is from Southampton, in the south of England. Her favorite thing about the area is that her local IKEA cafe looks out over the docks, and she loves to just relax and watch the nearest cruise ships!
When asked about what she wants her bookstagram to bring to the world, she had the perfect answer. “I just want people to love books! I spent so much time growing up not having many friends, and the ones I did have didn’t love books and didn’t get books the way I did. All I want is for people to find a community through books and to belong somewhere!”
“I started this account to talk books with people when I was going through a pretty rough time and it’s just grown and I am so grateful!” she added. “It means the world that people want to talk to me!”
Eliza is also highly enthusiastic about Six of Crows, and honestly, we wholeheartedly agree. “Okay, so over time this has literally become my entire personality, but my favourite author is Leigh Bardugo and my favourite books are her Grishaverse books!!” she exclaimed. “Especially the Six of Crows duology and the King of Scars duology! They are just so incredible!” When asked about her fictional crush, she also had a perfect choice. “Nikolai Lantsov. That’s all I have to say – I love him with my entire being!”
When not reading books for fun, Eliza occasionally reads for class, as well. For a fun question, Bookstr asked her if she’d ever claimed to read a book she hadn’t actually read, and she was ready to answer it. “I study English Literature at university and I distinctly remember being in a seminar about the play Copenhagen, and I literally had not read a single page. No one else was talking and I felt so bad for my lecturer who was just waiting and I made up all these profound points about this play and I was literally guessing the plot as I was talking but I got by!”
Like many bookworms, she also sometimes deals with reading a book she’s less than happy to complete. “I was thinking about which books I have pretended to have read, and the answer came to me! I am really good at writing essays on books I haven’t read – I have got through most of my degree just making things up completely! Most recently, I wrote an essay on The Castle of Otranto and I had NO CLUE what it was about and still scraped a first!” Don’t worry, Eliza! We’ve all been there.
Eliza also advises bookstagrammers to keep in touch with their online friends. If you engage with others in the community, you might just create long-lasting friendships by simply chatting about books!
“I have to shout out my main three lovely ladies, my bookstagram besties because they are the LOVELIEST people you will ever meet and I am so grateful for them!” she said. Her favorite bookstagrammers include @glasshousesandbookshelves (“my first booksta friend!!”), @littlebookishfairy, and @mariesbookworldblog. “But this community is so talented and so lovely and I love everyone I have met here!!”
We asked Eliza about some books and authors she might have on her TBR list, and like many of us, she had trouble choosing just a few! “Oh gosh… I don’t even want to talk about it,” she joked. “It’s well over 400 books long at this point!”
Additionally, she says her favorite bookstore is a place in London called South Bank. “It’s just so pretty and lively there, and when you look over the edge into the river at night it’s pitch black, and it’s terrifying! They have a Foyles bookshop there and it’s small and cute, and it’s my favourite bookshop!”
Eliza’s strategy for creating beautiful bookish content is simple, yet highly effective. We wish we had her skills! “I post a photo every day and I try to keep up with posting reels but I usually post them whenever I remember!” she said. “I used to take more flat lays, but I found that I wanted to incorporate fashion into my photos and I started doing that, and it seemed to work for me! I love it!”
“I knew I’d made it when I started making really solid friendships and having people to talk to!” she added. “And also when I started getting sent things for free… but that’s totally not it, haha.”
Want advice for aspiring bookstagrammers? She’s got you covered. “Honestly, just be yourself and start bookstagram because you want to be a part of the community! Get involved and message people! Some of the best people I have met here just happened to message me saying, “Hi! I think we’d make great friends!” and the rest is history!”