#OOTD: Tropical Floral

If you have never met me, let me fill you in. I’m 5 ft. 3 and petite, so it’s a bit of a challenge finding trousers or wider-legged bottoms that are flattering on my figure. #fashiongirlproblems. Perhaps it was all of the resort collections, the need for a vacation, or binge-watching look-book videos from my favorites on Youtube, but I was in a tropical state of mind when I styled this look.

I adore the tropical floral prints in general, so when I saw this pair of black and white culotte-hybrid at my local TJ Maxx, I knew I had to–at least–try them on. I also may have been subconsciously channeling Fleur de Force’s wide-leg trouser look from last August. Hers are from Topshop and almost identical to the print on mine!

The surprising thing about these was the thigh-high slit up each leg! Sexy, but appropriate for summer with the added plus of being able to show off some pretty fabulous sandals. Enter-the blue faux-suede (partially leather) fringe lace-up sandals by Steve Madden I’ve been obsessed with. The pants are a synthetic blend in a really light fabrication, so they are so incredibly soft and breathable for the hot summers in the desert that is the Yakima Valley. They sit not too low, not too high on me and I tie them at the waist.

Paired with this ruched cold-shoulder top from Thalia Sodi’s line for Macy’s and and some silver pieces from my Stella and Dot boutique and this look is summer party (or beach) ready. Shop the look below.

Top

Bottoms

Sandals

Necklace

Ring

Sunglasses

 

XOXO,

Mel

#OOTD: Pom-Pom Kicks

Give me a second to explain. I will be the first to tell you that I was the biggest critic of the pom-pom trend.

On sandals? WHY THO.

DIY Aquazzura Inspired Pom Pom Sandals - The Stripe:

On jeans? Meh.

color pop & pom poms:

As jewelry? *sigh

LOVE the huge pom pom earrings!:

As handbag accessories? That makes sense.

Celine bag & Pom Pom bag charm. @thecoveteur:

That last one is actually cute, however, I was still convinced the trend wasn’t for me. Until I saw this pair of Betsey Johnson cobalt blue faux fur and suede slip ons.

With a funky pom on top.

Not only were they the last pair, but they were in my size, and $13 at Macy’s right now. They are having their Mega-Shoe (or something) event and I just happened to be in the store at the right time. I am so glad I got them because they are super comfortable and just different. Paired with comfy black leggings, a basic tee, and bomber jacket, this outfit became sort of drab to downtown.

P.S. You can find the shoppable links below.

Bomber Jacket

Leggings

Slip-Ons

Black Tee

Arc Pendant *on sale right now!*

Ear Climbers *under $40

Sunglasses

#OOTD: Tassels on Tassels

The sun is finally out on a regular, non bi-polar, basis here in the Yakima Valley and I’m really happy about it. This past weekend, I took my sisters downtown to enjoy the Cinco de Mayo festivities. I recently purchased these lace-up sandals from TJMaxx and needed to show them off ASAP! You know that feeling when you stumble across the loveliest pair of shoes that you don’t know what you’ll pair them with, but you must have them? That was my Carrie Bradshaw moment with these Steve Madden sandals. I have nothing like them in my closet, so I knew I wouldn’t be cluttering my wardrobe with the same look. Plus, girl, they were under $30. I mean, really. I hope you enjoy this post. Scroll all the way through and you will find the links to shop.

Note to self: sandals season requires a pedicure because…cringe*

I normally have a wide foot, so I was a little worried that these would only cover half of each one. To my surprise, not only are they comfortable, but the fringe trim on the front and the tassels are genuine leather. If I am going to wear sandals all summer long, genuine leather is a must to ensure longevity. Even if the leather patinas darker later on, I am still going to get great wear out of them.

I paired them with white denim, also from TJMaxx. These are by a brand called D Jeans. Obscure. Don’t care because they’re a great fit, and honestly, make my booty look good!

I rolled up the hem to show off the lace-up straps, naturally. For the rest of the outfit, I wore my double-layer blue & white tank from Chico’s. It was hot this past Sunday, so even though the tank is a dual-layer piece, it’s very breathable and comfortable. I paired it with my Fossil cross-body and gold Stella & Dot pieces to match the gold hardware.


Tank: I love this classic one.

Denim: This pair fits fantastic!

Sandals: May still be at your local TJ Maxx, but this Steve Madden pair is similar.

Crossbody bag: This one comes in 9 other colors!

Rebel Pendant: Selena Gomez loves this one, too! Available on my site here…

Celestial Choker: and here.

Celestial Ring: You can shop this staple piece here.

Quay Sunnies: You all know I’m obsessed with these.

XOXO,

M

PREMIERE: Harry Styles’ New Single: “Sweet Creature”

Unashamed, I admit I do love the (former?) One Directioner. His style, his looks, his voice are all incredibly refreshing.

Following the success of the Sign of the Times and a world tour announcement last week, the singer’s second single off of his self-titled debut album, is finally here.

Leave your thoughts below.

XOXO,

M

Surviving the Bikini Series: Week 1 Recap

Image result for tone it up bikini series 2017

To obtain more info on this plan, click here. Also, I am not recommending a fitness routine or diet to you without the suggestion of double checking with your health practitioner.

I have always struggled with my weight. When I got “diagnosed” with Scoliosis in 2004, I started working out. Hard. I felt that it was somehow my fault for my spine turning into an “S” curve instead of developing perfect and straight like it should. I was so hard on myself. Flash forward to today, working at a desk for the first time in my life. 8+ hours sitting down at work and then going home, or my local Starbucks, to blog or study was not helping my posture, figure, and overall health. Not only that, but I was also noticing a change in my creativity and attitude. I was more irritable, prone to start meaningless fights with those around me, fatigued, and, to my extreme surprise-super inflexible. In my first years of college, I started practicing yoga, pilates, and Zumba. A few weeks before the Bikini Series started, I attended an event at my local hot yoga studio and was, quite frankly, sad and disappointed in myself that I was in pain and could not obtain the poses like I once could.

Keep in mind, I’m only 26. I was journaling one evening and started to write down my frustrations on paper. Then, right beneath that, I wrote out questions to myself to see if I could be honest with myself. They were questions like “How do you want to feel?”, “What foods do you notice make you feel fatigued, bloated, or overall, really unhealthy and sluggish?”.

That brought some clarity and perspective. Then, I saw Karena and Katrina’s post on Instagram about the 2017 Bikini Series. Crap. Again, already? Keep in mind that I have followed K+K, founders of the crazy popular and successful, Tone It Up brand, since about 2014. Working out for free via their YouTube videos here and trying a recipe there, I realized they had always helped me feel great. Clean. Lean.

Naturally, I became a member, bought the Nutrition Plan and signed up for the 2017 Bikini Series. I sought out other “#TIUGirls” in my area, or that I found extraordinarily inspirational, on Instagram and simply committed to myself. I had to tell myself that. I am doing this for you and  your benefit only. I want to share my journey with you all in the hopes that one girl out there may find a bit of inspiration to begin her own journey to an overall healthier lifestyle.

There are 8 weeks total. This is the recap of my first one.

Monday | Crap. I missed my first Booty Call (the AM workout you do as soon as you get up). No worries, I will make it up later. I had meal-prepped the night before (THANK GOODNESS FOR THIS!), so I essentially had my meals figured out for the week. I will tell you that this is KEY and a habit I hope to retain for years to come. It really takes the stress out of finding proper-yet really damn good-nutrition for the week. I did the 5 Daily Moves and the 20 minutes of cardio that were on the TIU Weekly Work-Out Schedule and felt AMAZING. I did start the week with a bit of a cold and was not feeling a workout at all , but I remembered the heart-to-heart I had with myself and felt so compelled to fulfill the commitment. I did it. I felt damn good.

Example of next week’s nutrition plan!

 

Tuesday | Woke up feeling pretty great. Groggy from cold medicine, but no upset stomach, no fatigue. Worked out.

Wednesday | Feeling even better today. Went for an after-work walk with my lovely friend Julie and her dogs. According to her Fit Bit, we completely over 7,000 steps. It was a long walk; 70 minutes or so.

Thursday | Still sticking to my Tone It Up Nutrition Plan for the Bikini Series and noticing my taste buds changing. I felt satisfied and full after consuming much smaller portions.

Friday | Slipped a bit today due to a brand representative bringing us lunch at work. I had stayed up pretty late Thursday night studying and reading, so the last meal for the work week that I had planned on was not prepped. To top it all off, I was running to late to work this AM, so I ended up eating half of an Italian sandwich from Jimmy John’s, a dill pickle (guilty pleasure!) and a water. I am proud to say this was my only “slip-up” the whole week!

Saturday | I am feeling really…”happy”. I can feel that my joints have better range of motion, my muscles are feeling tight and a little sore–which I don’t mind–, and I am feeling more me.

Sunday | Reflecting on my first week, I can say that I am really proud of myself. I am feeling so grateful for life, health and the opportunity to decide to change something I don’t like, and the wisdom to realize it will take continued discipline, inspiration, and perspiration 😉

If you are reading this post and can relate to ANY  part of this, I want to tell you that I am with you. I am here to listen to your doubts and to tell you that you need to get over your fear and just. freaking. do. it. 

XOXO,

M

 

#OOTD: Cold-Shoulder Florals

I have to be honest with you guys for a second.

I was feeling really self-conscious about posting some of these photos and almost didn’t post it at all. I was hospitalized recently and had been prescribed a mixture of antibiotics and pain relievers that induced side effects like bloating, water retention, break-outs, and irritability. I did not feel like me at all. But if I am going to share my life with you, I might as well bare it all.

I love the cold-shoulder trend that reemerged for Spring & Summer 2017, but I hadn’t found one that I felt flattered the top half of my body. Then, I was perusing the aisles at TJMaxx and fell in love with this one. Floral prints are nothing new for the warm weather months, but I feel good in it! The material is so soft and the sleeve doesn’t drop too low down my arms which can overwhelm my petite figure (I’m only 5’3″ btw).

I paired it with these distressed crops from Chico’s. Let me tell you something. For a curvy Latina like me, I have never loved any boyfriend style jean or loose crop pant. But I tried these on and knew I had to get them. They’re just the right amount of distressed and so, so soft. Another thing I love is that this particular silhouette is higher-waisted that most denim bottoms I have tried on. I tucked the top in just a bit and voila.

The shoes I’m wearing rep another trend we’re seeing in footwear this season: the simple strapped sandal. While these Franco Sarto ones do not have the block heel, I love the wedge because it doesn’t hurt my right foot-which is still fractured.

You all know I am an accessory girl through and through. They are the glue that makes or breaks the outfit you try to piece together. I decided to keep it simple with some of my favorite silver accessories from the line I’m a stylist for-Stella and Dot. The choker and engraved necklace layered together make for a quieter, more delicate statement. The bracelets I love pairing together because they are so lightweight and look good with anything. The ring is one of my all-time favorite pieces, as well. It’s malleable so you can adjust how close or far apart the different layers of the ring are. PLUS, if it’s that time of the month and you’re bloated, like everywhere, you can easily open the ring up just a tad wider. How’s that for versatile accessories? My watch is an old rose-gold Fossil watch that I bought during my time working with their Bellevue Square location a few years ago.

Let’s take a moment and talk about these sunglasses because I have gotten so many questions about them. We’ve seen the reflective lenses all over the Gram and for good reason; they’re fun, flashy, and perfect for summer. I saw this exact pair on my favorite UK style blogger Fleur de Force on a recent trip of hers and bought them right away. I hadn’t tried them on before, but I was familiar with the Quay brand and knew that if I wanted a pair of statement sunglasses that these would be it. These are the All My Love lenses and they come in a few other different color combos.



XOXO,

M