Welcoming Spring in Gingham

It’s April 1st! I know. Let that sink in for a moment. It feels as thought it was just yesterday we were holiday shopping and making our 2018 resolutions.

But if I know anything, it’s that time keeps ticking and the seasons keep changing. With that being said, I wanted to let you all know that if you are wondering about Spring trends (maybe you’re not), gingham is making a strong statement this season. It is here to stay, making its cameo on dresses, sandals, and bathing suits. I was never for the print, honestly. It always reminded me a picnic and I wasn’t into it. I preferred all types of floral prints when it came to dressing for this season. I know–florals for spring. Groundbreaking. But I saw this top at TJMaxx (one of my absolute favorite places to shop) and knew I would be adding it to my outfits this season. It has bell sleeves, which again, I am obsessed with. It was tapered and constructed in a way that it flares out a bit at the waist and narrows around the chest area–flattering for my petite and curvy figure. This one is by NANETTE by Nanette Lepore and it was $24.99. 

I wanted to go for a pair of white jeans for a look that said “I’m SO over winter.”, yet was clean (aka not distressed) and could transition to a family brunch or coffee meeting. These I got last year at TJMaxx as well. They’re by a brand called d. jeans and I got them for around $24.99. Naturally, I finished off the look with by favorite Steve Madden sandals from Nordstrom and my favorite statement necklace by Stella & Dot. I bought these around the holidays this past season and wear them all of the time. The heel is low enough for my fractured right foot and polished enough for any outfit. The necklace is a best-selling piece for us and one of the first things I bought myself when I became a stylist and opened up shop last fall. P.S. It also comes in gold. 

I was in need of some new sunglasses when my infamous rose gold Quay ones bit the dust recently. I work at an optometrist and took it to a coworker to see if there was a possibility of a repair, but, unfortunately, there was not. A moment of silence, please. I saw these in (yep) TJMaxx on this same shopping trip and scored these for $7.99! They’re by Elie Tahari’s TAHARI and they have the most beautiful sand-colored frame with a gold metal bar for the nose bridge and subtle blue tinted lenses. Bring on the sunshine.

Left to right from image: 

What do you all think of this trend? Are you a gingham skeptic like me or are you already owning your 3rd piece in the print? Let me know in the comments! Also, be sure to follow me over on Instagram because I will be announcing my 1k followers giveaway this week!

Thank you for all of your continued support. I hope to keep creating content that you guys enjoy! It truly means the world to me.

XOXO,

Mel

 

Introducing: Jord Watches + GIVEAWAY!

Hello, beautiful people.

It’s been a minute. How’s it going in your life? Ready for Spring? Me TOO!

One of my goals for my blog this year is to work with smaller brands that tell a big story–and bring awareness to them! I am pretty selective on the brands I choose to collaborate with because not only is my time — and theirs– valuable, but I also know how valuable your trust is.

That being said, let me introduce you to Jord Watches. A watch brand so unique, I have gotten compliments from both men and women of various age groups. Immediately, I was intrigued to the wood. Crazy cool, right? It’s not like anything out on the market. The next thing I thought about was how I would probably ruin it. How do you even care for a wooden watch? The site has a complete guide on how to maintain the life of your watch. By the way, did you know that the cold temperatures shrink wood? Maybe just me, honestly. But I was blown away in the moment. They even send you a small tube of cleaner with a microfiber cloth in a gorgeous wooden box to care for and store your watch! A major plus.

So not only was I feeling confident about wearing what seemed like a delicate piece, I was even more intrigued by the varying styles! The site features an obvious section dedicated to both men and women, but there are so many designs ranging from a more conservative, scholarly rectangular face with a thin band and Roman numerals, to a larger boyfriend-style watch with rose gold dials. Also, they offer over 10 different styles of wood! Who knew it was so versatile?

You guys know how much I am obsessed with rose gold and I wanted to try a watch with a bigger face than what I currently have. I had a few options, but I just had to go with the Frankie Watch. I found the minimalist style incredibly streamlined and I could not be more happy! Also, if you are even sort of thinking about getting a special piece like this engraved, I highly recommend it! A major shout-out to the Jord team. Mine was engraved and it was such a sentimental moment seeing something so important to me written in wood. It’s the little things,  you know?

We wanted to give you guys a chance to have your very own Jord, so they are giving one of you $100 towards a watch! This contest is super easy; all you have to do is click this link and submit the entry form. I’m not even going to tempt you with following me on the socials. But you can if your heart desires and I definitely won’t be mad about it. Also, even if you don’t win, you will get a code after the contest ends for 10% off! The giveaway will close 3/18 at 11:59pm.

P.S. I recently achieved 1,000 followers over on Instagram and I just wanted to give you a huge thank you for visiting my tiny little corner of the internet. I love you!

Disclaimer: This was a sponsored post as Jord gifted me with the watch in exchange for a review. All opinions about the product are my own.

NEW Stella & Dot January 2018 Collection!

Well, everyone–the holidays are officially behind us, the decorations put away, and suddenly it’s not ok to drink champagne all afternoon 😉

However, I am OK with it. I am so beyond over my bulky sweaters and thick boot socks and ready to welcome Spring 2018 with wide open arms! Today, I will be sharing the new style drop by Stella & Dot now available on my site!

Before you check out some of my favorite pieces, in both jewelry & tops, I invite you to check out the promo video below.

 

TOPS

  1. Kendall Long Sleeve Top 

2.  Eden Sweatshirt

3.  Addy Versatile Poncho

4. Sienna Tie Top

5. Amie Lace Sweatshirt

6. Lolo Top

EARRINGS

1. Rebecca Minkoff Interlocking Hoops

2. Esmee Leaf Earrings

3. Rebecca Minkoff Hedasa Earring Pack

5. Aiyana Fringe Chandeliers

6. Natriella Pearl Hoops

7. Elina Drop Earrings

8.Stacy Knot Hoops

9. Georgia Hoops

10. Rebecca Minkoff Maika Earrings

11.Rory Floral Drop Earrings 

12. Rebecca Minkoff Shanaz Threader Earrings

13. Sefina Drop Earrings

14. Marie Double Drop Earrings

15. Cece Earrings

16.Kessie Drop Earrings

17. Isabella Chandelier Earrings

18. Solitaire Stud Pack

19. Esmee Chandeliers

NECKLACES

1. Dez Layered Necklace

2.Kari Layered Necklace

3.Isabella Pendant

4. Rory Necklace

5. Rayna Pendant Necklace

6. Sullivan Necklace

7. Rebecca Minkoff Kendall Wrap Necklace

8. Ambrosia Necklace

9. Natia Layered Necklace

RINGS

1. Rebecca Minkoff Pave Duo Ring

2. Imperial Stacking Ring

3. Elina Ring

Did you make it this far? Woohoo! I love you so much if you have made it to the end of this blog post. What did you guys think of the new collection?

XOXO,

Mel

7 Lessons Learned in 2017

Forget the past, but remember the lesson.

1. Accept your body, even if you’re just CONTENT with it

It really is so easy to hate on our bodies, isn’t it ladies? Whether it’s saggy boobs, double chins, a booty that doesn’t look like a Kardashian’s, or teeth that aren’t the perfect shade of white-we are our own biggest critics! You may not realize it, but these negative thoughts really affect our self-esteem and the way we feel about our bodies. This year, I really wanted to take my physical health to the next level, so I became disciplined and completed my first ever Bikini Series (by Tone It Up). This simple change towards a healthier me was in a way proving to myself that I could change what I wanted to improve. I don’t look like a swimsuit model, but I’m so ok with it. My body is simply not built like Gigi Hadid’s and hers isn’t like mine, physically or biologically, and it’s fine! I’m still sexy as hell and healthy, according to my doctor. I  now workout 4x a week, take apple cider vinegar wellness shots every morning, and eat at least 2 vegan meals daily.

2. It’s ok to be selfish

I have a tendency to want to have control as well as pleasing those people important to my life. Aren’t you? It makes sense; you’d like your parents to be proud of you, your siblings to look up to you, your friends to value your time, and your boss to love you 100% of the time. I recognized this trait in myself this year and I am so glad I did because I was able to flip it. I asked myself more often, “Do I want to do this?”

“Is this WORTH my time?”

“What will I gain from this?”

“Is this healthy for me?”

And guess whaaaaaat? A lot of the time, I really didn’t like the answers to these questions. So I stopped being available to everyone always. I really got into the habit of completing my own tasks towards goals that were MY own business. I’m not saying cut everyone out of your life and just focus on YOU always, but ask yourself if you are being taken advantage of and who the majority of your time is being consumed by. Because, unfortunately, people do take advantage of others when a lack of confidence is sensed. If you don’t do it for yourself, who will?

3. Gratitude and kindness can transform your day

I have tried meditation and am never looking back! I know, I know, but hear me out-the hype is REAL. Our minds are so damn powerful and our brains being that powerful muscle, need exercised. I have only been meditating since around my birthday (September 27th), but it has completely changed my mindset, increased my ability to recognize unhealthy habits, and decreased my stress levels. Better yet, meditation (even if it is just a guided session) has introduced me to the power of gratitude. Being grateful is so humbling and so therapeutic because it releases your ego and allows you to see your life clearly. Regarding kindness–I mean this is a cliche and a no-brainer. And with 2017 being the year that it was, we should really be more kind. To ourselves and to others.

IT IS SO EASY TO DO.

4. Friendships are relationships, too

I think as we get older, our friend circles become much more fragile…people get married, spend time with new loved ones, move away, work more often than before, etc. This year I realized that friendships are relationships, too. They need nurturing, attention, open means of communication, and mutual trust. It’s so easy to like people’s life experiences on Instagram–or whatever your social media vice is–and think you know what they’re up to. This was the year that I really became picky who I spend my time with, but also found it easier to let go of those who aren’t interested in having me in their circle of friends. And that’s ok with me. I didn’t take these situations so personally because people change, grow apart, and grow at different rates. But I am oh so thankful for those who have stayed.

5. Curiosity leads to inspiration

I fell into a funk earlier this year. I was on auto-pilot…wake up, rush to work, sit at a desk all day, eat a sub-par lunch, go home, sort of work out, eat a super unhealthy dinner, go to sleep. Repeat. How I lived like this for months, I have no idea. But there was a point in the fall, around my birthday, that something within me clicked. All of my childish imagination, curiosity, and wander flooded into my life again. Not on its own; I opened that door, longing for inspiration and that energy simply came together. But all the while, I was reading and learning new things like Astronomy, the benefits of a vegan diet, adult attachment theory, ‘love’ psychology, influencer marketing, the basics of coding. Something really beautiful happens when there is new knowledge learned and absorbed by your mind.

6. Self-care is as important as breathing

This lesson is tied with a few of the previously mentioned ones. It’s hard to only have a revolutionary year in just one part of your life. I think that because this year was chock full of political propaganda, drama on a global scale, along with so many societal issues being touched on (racism, xenophobia, sexual assault, to name just a few), self-care was inevitable as a means of survival this year. It’s really important to be so in touch with yourself so that you authentically move your life in the direction you wish. So whether it is enjoying some time alone journaling, meditating, listening to music, calling your loved ones, I encourage you to engage in self-care more often this year.

Some of my favorite ways to perform self-care are:

  1. Meditate (I am obsessed with The Mindful Movement & Unlock Your Life channels on YouTube!)
  2. Light incense and listen to piano with my headphones in.
  3. Take a bath. (Light a candle and drop a bath bomb in there)
  4. Have an affirmation session. (Those YouTube channels I mentioned have some really great ones, as well)

7. I am 100% in control of my life

I know, I know. This last one may seem a bit of cliche. But hear me out. How many times have you been in a situation asking yourself, “What do I do?” or “Why me?” or “What if this hadn’t happened this way?”? I know that in stressful situations especially, we tend to feel like the Universe is out to get us or that fate had something to do with it, and that may lead  us hesitating how to logically get back on course. There is just you that is the one with the control. I can’t tell you how many times I sat around overthinking a situation when I could have easily recognized that I could make it better–that simple belief–and saved myself such emotional turmoil. It’s true that we can have the lives we have always dreamed of, but we need that belief present because that will stimulate action. And we all know that action produces results.

 

What are some things you learned in 2017? I want to know! Leave me a comment on this post or tweet here!

Have a happy 2018; full of love, laughter, and prosperity.

XOXO,

Mel

The New WhoWhatWear Collection: My Favorite Pieces

I had read WWW for years, and had never given their collaboration with Target a serious chance. As I sit here typing away the words you’re reading in my WhoWhatWear Ruffle Sleeve Sweater, I am here to tell you that I am fully impressed with not only the unique styling choices (dark floral prints, butterfly images, lace ruffles) that are oh so pretty, but with the fabric content for each piece and the wear I have gotten from my own pieces.
*this is NOT a sponsored post as I purchased the sweater and dress with my own money.

1. Women’s 3/4 Sleeve Tiered Ruffle Crew Sweater

I got this in gray and have been wearing it with dark denim and booties for a casually dramatic look.

Image result for who what wear Women's 3/4 Sleeve Tiered Ruffle Crew Sweater

2. Women’s Faith Flat Mules

I love this idea of the versatile, elevated, and feminine twist on a classic men’s work loafer. Pair this with a button-up top and a printed pencil skirt for a fun 9-to-5 look.

Image result for who what wear Women's Faith Flat Mules

3. Women’s Ring Crossbody Handbag

Obviously similar to the Chloe ‘Faye’ bag, I still stand by the fact that this piece is a great everyday bag. I can’t help it; that ring and the scarf tied around it is such a chic touch!

Image result for who what wear Women's Ring Crossbody Handbag

4. Women’s Tiered Ruffle Cuff Mini Dress

I’m all about party looks and holiday-wear that you can wear after the Christmas parties and New Year’s Eve champagne have been cleaned up. The metallic thread that runs through this black satin fabric is just so beautiful and the ruffles give it a playful touch.

Image result for who what wear Women's Tiered Ruffle Cuff Mini Dress

5. Women’s Long Sleeve Mock Neck Blouse

The delicate print of this high-neck blouse is so feminine and shows the perfect amount of skin for date night. Just remember your strapless bra!

Image result for Women's Long Sleeve Mock Neck Blouse

Introducing: Stella & Dot 2017 Holiday Collection!

It’s that time of year again!

With all of the holiday collections launching left and right, I had to share the new arrivals that just launched on my Stella & Dot boutique. A lot of the new pieces are from the Stella Dot x Rebecca Minkoff collection (read that blog post here) and so beautiful! Check out the promo video below. Items are listed in order of their appearance 🙂

1. Prisma Statement Necklace – $129

2. Prisma Statment Bracelet – $79

3. Prisma Chandeliers – $59

4. Eve Bib Necklace – $139

5. Margeaux Clutch – $69

6. Izzy Top – $69

7. Mara Pearl Necklace – $69

8. Constantine Feather Chandeliers – $59

9. Constantine Feather Necklace – $149

10. Jasper Ombre Necklace – $119

11. Embroidered Blaire Necklace – $59

12. Cascading Crystal Chandeliers – $49

not in promo video:

13. Chantal Pom Beanie – $44

14. Chantal Scarf (Reversible Faux Fur/Dove Grey Knit) – $69

15. Pave Knot Studs – $29

16. Adonia Stud Pack – $39

17. Charlotte Pendant Set – $59 (available in Lilac & Neutral)

18. Hera Coil Bracelet – $39

19. Signature Engravable Delicate Ring – $59 (available in Gold)

20. Signature Engravable Wishing Bracelet – $59

P.S. I know that during the holidays, our wallets can take a hit! BUT FEAR NOT! If you love the brand already and want a side gig for the holidays, you can not only host a style session for your girlfriends and get free and half off accessories, but I’m hiring for my team of stylists! You can make this a side hustle and I’ll tell you why you should:

great stylist discount, 30% commission on sales, bonuses

-flexible hours (literally work whenever you can)

-no keeping inventory

-no obligatory sales goals

-the opportunity to promote your stylist rank to a higher one within the company 😉

If this sounds like you, let’s talk! Comment below or shoot me a message here.

 

27 Things I Would Tell My Younger Self

Pavan quote poem about people and how they try to be someone who they aren't without realizing how great they truly are already.

We all had that life plan. You know the one. They asked us a few times in grade school and we would write it down, hide it away, and open it for a serving of nostalgia after graduation.

But how many times does it really work out that way? If I had to guess, less than 50%. For me, that plan included marriage, a Master’s degree, and my first company. Lofty goals. I would beat myself about deviating from “the path” or “my plan” so much. I later realized that it was because we’re never taught that life can get in the way. Or rather-that it’s OKAY that we pave our own way. I have two younger sisters that are at pivotal stages in their lives. They’re literally some of my favorite humans ever and I hope to inspire and–hopefully–teach them what I have learned from my experience-mistakes included.


We never account for the possibility of changing our minds, falling in love, falling out of it, and the overall experience that is life. I turned 27 years old on September 27 and was recently inspired by Ingrid Nilsen’s most recent video. This was really enlightening and intimidating to write, especially because as soon as I hit ‘publish’, this information is officially on the Internet forever. Part of my self-care routine is to constantly reflect and appreciate how far I have come without becoming entangled in the past, as well as being damn proud of what I have achieved. I encourage all of you to do the same 🙂 I would love to hear your thoughts on what you would tell your younger self. Comment below so we can start a conversation. I’ve also included some photos of my younger self (which are slightly embarrassing!) c. 2009-2012. I hope you enjoy.

  1. Yes, this move is brave. It will lead you to one of the best adventures of your life.
  2. Call your sisters more often.
  3. Don’t hold on to what you have been taught your whole life by others around you as a guide to live YOUR life.
  4. Don’t be afraid to make the first move: introduce yourself to that peer, the cute boy in your merchandising class, or the quiet girl reading the same book.
  5. Ask more questions; in fact, ask as many as you can. The universe is here for you to learn from it.
  6. Why not you? Your race, image, background, financial status holds absolutely no bearing on your character or what you can achieve.
  7. Nobody is born deserving anything. Be more humble. It’s good for the soul.
  8. Accept that you need to practice gratitude more often. It will change your life.
  9. You are not responsible for people’s mistakes. The only thing you can offer to your loved ones is affection and support, but you are not a life jacket to anyone and everyone who may be drowning.
  10. Learn to say no. It doesn’t make you a bad friend or colleague. 
  11. Your time is valuable. Don’t waste it seeking validation from anyone.
  12. Study abroad. Jumping into the unknown is good for you.
  13. Don’t stop reading. You will never, ever stop learning. Even after college.
  14. Fashion is not the only bubble in which you live and work in; read about astronomy, sociology, and technology.
  15. I know you love those to-do lists and being productive, but you need to also learn to relax.
  16. SLEEP. It’s healthy.
  17. Oh, you found a wrinkle? That’s OK.
  18. Also, don’t freak out about the bags under your eyes. See #16. 
  19. Please treasure the friendships you will encounter. They need nurturing as well.
  20. You’ve been in lust, but not in love…yet.
  21. Your sexuality is not a demon. What’s more is that it will be one of the most spiritual experiences when it’s with someone who loves you. It’s also fun. Own it. You’re not married either. So what? Chill. Let go of the Catholic guilt. What happens between two consenting adults is nobody else’s business.
  22. Get lost in those blue eyes because you’re about to fall in love. He’s somebody that will teach you so much.
  23. Meditate and search within you.
  24. Hold onto that faith. Believing is half the battle.
  25. Keep writing. You’re good at it.
  26. Don’t wait for that “perfect job”; seek inspiring people and opportunities.
  27. Keep being that hopeless romantic.

I hope, as always, that you have found this helpful or perhaps even inspiring.

What would you tell your younger self?

xo,