Hilton Head Island Travel Diary: The iPhone Version

So if you aren’t following me on Instagram (which you should because sometimes it’s funny) you may not have known that I took a much needed vacation last week to Hilton Head Island. It’s one of my favorite places for a ton of different reasons. I love the atmosphere, the scenes, the fact that it is a quiet community and the food! So here are some of the highlights of my trip!

For the first time in almost four years we stayed on the South end of the island, right down the street from Coligny Beach. We were walking distance from food and shopping of any kind; and the most important, we were on beach front so we could easily walk to the beach at any given time during the day. It was so easy to have a relaxing vacation when everything was at your fingertips. Plus it didn’t hurt that according to the FitBit, we got well over 10,000 steps a day. Plus you could constantly hear the waves crashing which is the ultimate sound for relaxation.

Being so close to the beach and the fact that this was a much needed vacation was a no brainer that all day, every day I was at the beach. I loaded up on the SPF and literally chilled. The beach was quiet after Labor Day Weekend and even more quiet with the threat of a hurricane. But still I relaxed. And swam in the ocean. And played with sea creatures. I’ve got plenty of questions about this hat, the striped bathing suit and the kimono cover up; so they are all linked here!

Hat // Striped Bathing Suit // Kimono

Hilton Head Island is known for their world class golf courses and food. And well let’s just say I prefer food over the links. I have been waiting 5 whole years to try this place. They shut down for a week before Summer and it just so happens that’s always the week I visit. But it was worth the wait. Perfectly cooked cajun southern food. I had the etoufee and it was amazzzzzinggggg! If you visit Hilton Head, I suggest visiting Kenny B’s.

I found Java Burrito Company on Instagram and I am so glad that I did. It’s like a local Chipotle but for every meal and a full coffee bar inside. I had a breakfast bowl and iced dirty chai. Hands down one of the best decisions I made on that trip.

Ela’s is becoming a favorite on the island for me to visit. A little swanky, quiet, on the waterfront and the service and food is outstanding. We visiting the day before the evacuation was in order for Irma and they were still open. We had the place to ourselves and the service nor food suffered due to being understaffed or the island becoming a ghost town.

Marley’s Island Grill was a first for me, but not a last. Sooooooo good! A Caribbean take on local seafood. I got chorizo almond crusted scallops which may actually be one of the top 20 best meals of my life. So good.

There is just beauty and magic every where on the island. Maybe it’s because you are on vacation or island time. Whatever it is, it works. My soul feels a little more full after my visit there.

Happy Travels!

The Failed Romper

Fashion, style or lifestyle bloggers typically share what they love, what works and what they think you need to add to your shopping cart too. But a lot of times we miss the things that just don’t work. So I’m here to share with you something that just missed the mark big time.

Last year for Andrew and I’s annual Hilton Head Island visit, we got invited to a last minute event. And to be frank, I had planned very little on blogging or working period because not only was this our annual visit, but it was also in celebration of graduation for myself. I literally planned to sit on the beach the entire week and do nothing but swim, eat seafood and drink gin and tonics. But this event happened. I ran out to the local outlet mall to grab something quick. Without even trying it on, I bought a sale item that of course couldn’t be returned. But at least I didn’t waste a lot of money on it, right? I wore this to the event dreadfully, because well it just didn’t work. Hence why no pictures of the private seafood dining experience we had.

In light of the male romper becoming a thing everyone is talking about, I thought I would get this out of the closet to try to style it one more time, with my entire closet and plenty of time. And it’s still a big nope. The area around the crotch is just not working for me, the top portion is about two sizes to big and the linen fabric for this does not work because it’s constantly a wrinkly mess. I don’t feel confident in this number, nor do I feel comfortable. Which are huge turn offs for me in clothing.  I’m glad this is from last season, because I wouldn’t recommend this to anyone. I’m confused on how someone can create a male’s romper to fit his groin area without any moose knuckles but women’s rompers are the luck of the draw, and they are the luck of the draw for many women in many different sizes and shapes. They are just hits or misses.

Needless to say this number immediately went in to a donation bag because there’s no use in it taking up my closet space. Also lesson learned to never leave the store without trying something on, especially if it’s a “no return sale” item.

 

A Maxi For Mom

Dress // Sandals // Jewelry

Mother’s Day is this weekend; so I hope you have picked out your momma the best gift or have come up with a thoughtful gesture! So whether you are brunching, lunching or grilling out with your mom, your #ootd needs to be on point, because mom deserves your best look!

I’ve been looking through my closet trying to find the perfect outfit for Mother’s Day, because I’m heading to Biltmore. And the maxi dresses just seem perfect. Long enough to be classy and respectful, but with a fun boho vibe. And a maxi is easy, just the way I want dressing to be on a Sunday. You don’t have to worry about putting together an outfit that just works and let’s face it, even though we love mom, Sundays are still our lazy days.

I already have a strappy, short staple for this Spring and Summer, but this dress is going to be my maxi go to. Enough black in the dress to satisfy my neutral loving heart but with some pops of colors spaced throughout the stripes for a fun Spring/Summer pop. The added tribal print on the straps, plus a fun strappy back eliminates my need for a necklace, making it the easiest throw on and go, pulled together look. All I needed was some sandals and my go to daily jewelry (bangles and rings). Perfect for errands, traveling, brunch, cook outs or patio drinking.

Mom would def approve of this dress (and the price point).

 

 

The Show I Didn’t Expect To Binge Watch Or Be So Emotional Over

Image VIA

I’m not one to tell y’all what I’m binge watching because generally it’s embarrassing or I’ve gotten better since I’m busy now to watch an episode at a time, ya know like people normally would. And you probably honestly don’t care. But the show I recently binge watched, was one I wasn’t expecting or expected to have real emotions during. But I did and I’m still heart broken over it; so since it is that good I just had to tell y’all about it.

I had not heard of 13 Reasons Why (I had no idea it was a book or created by Selena Gomez). I even ignored the preview on Netflix earlier in the month; I simply passed it off as another teen drama. But then I noticed a friend whom is a teacher talking about it, so thought I would put it on as background noise for making dinner. I was making a chicken bake, so nothing was going to burn, but I didn’t want to keep missing the parts when I got up to do laundry and other nightly chores. After dinner, I had to restart the show and I was drawn in. Needless to say I was up until about 3am on Monday morning watching because I just had to know what happened next. I later finished the Netflix original on Thursday, and lately I haven’t been binge watching anything with my hectic schedule.

Without giving away what happens, the trailer even tells you this much; the concept is Hannah has taken her life and left tapes to explain why and the show focus around Clay, Hannah’s crush/love, listening. Even though it’s high school based, the reason I was so drawn in is we have all either been Hannah or known a Hannah. Also the characters are all familiar; the popular crowd, the loner, the kid who might do a school shooting, the friendly crowd, the shy kid, the kid with no money and the kid with all the money who gets away with everything. All of them trying to find their way and themselves through the harsh reality of life.

But the show’s creators and writers did not leave any stone unturned. The show talks about things that high schoolers and young adults (even adults) face. Bullying, sexual assault, depression, rape, alcoholism and the list goes on. They take it head on, not something that is pushed under the rug. It’s raw and real. It honestly feels like the most realistic thing I’ve watched in a really long time.

Image VIA

I as a 28 year adult, cried. I cried more times than I would like to actually admit. The scene that got me the most was the school dance scene. A perfect moment in time. Like we have all had before. A moment that captures that awkward yet thrilling moment of young or fresh love. A moment we never think would be a memory due to a tragic fate.

When Clay hears is own tape, I balled. Like a baby. Sometimes you can love someone so much but still not be able to help them the way they need you too. Or you may not even know they needed help, because on the outside they were holding it together so well, or maybe even semi well. This hit home a little too much with a bunch of personal stuff going on.

The graphic scene of the actual suicide makes you really think. What could I do a little more to make sure someone feels that they have no other choice. No one to help them. No one to run to. No one to comfort them. I have suffered with depression since the age of the characters in the show. I have gotten to that point. But then I always had someone bring me back. And we all need that from time to time.

A show to make you think. A show to make you feel emotions. A show to make you love and compassionate. A show to make you think about those around you. A show to make you live life to fullest. A show to make you thankful. A show to make you think about the things you say and do. A show to make you aware you effect others. A show to make you tell people you love, that you love them. A show to make you aware, the world is rough and every single one of us has to encounter it’s harshness.

The “Everything” Dress

Dress // Clutch // Sandals

I’ve been looking for a dress that I can just about wear to anything. And I do mean anything. Cook outs, date night, showers, celebrations or even just running errands. And I’m pretty sure I found just the right one. Luckily I don’t have to attend any weddings, but a wedding celebration, so nothing overly fancy was needed. I have been searching and searching. Everything is just overload on floral and a lot of bright yellow. Neither I am extremely fond of. But I did find this dress, with a floral print, but not overly floral. Plus the base of the dress is black, making it extremely versatile.

The fit of this dress is what drew me in. I’m not the biggest fan of the straps, but could easily put a vest or cardigan over it. The rouging under the bust gives a nice silhouette and the flare helps cover up any unwanted attention to the mid section and the hips. The length is perfect. It’s not too short and not too long.

I paired the dress with some strappy sandals and this amazing clutch in the perfect Spring neutral for a fun night of patio dining. But the dress would go great with sneakers and denim, cardigans and booties, blazer and heels or just worn with casual sandals. The possibilities for styling and what to wear it for are endless.

Have you found your go to dress yet this season?

 

Blooming Into Spring

Skirt // Top // Similar Sandals // Necklace

The new season means new collections everywhere and picking just the right pieces to add to your closet. What’s popular this Spring? Florals ( GROUNDBREAKING ), the color blush, cropped denim and pants, flowy dresses, cold shoulder, cut outs, yellow and sandals (just about any kind). And to help me with adding some new Spring pieces to my wardrobe I got to visit Versona to check out all these new trends.

Now when it comes to trends I am very fickle because I’m more a neutral kind of girl and I like to find pieces that will transition with my wardrobe through the seasons so I get my money’s worth out of the pieces. So I always keep that in mind, and if it is something extremely trendy like the seventies style flowy floral dresses I make sure it’s affordable so it’s not a huge loss. But with Versona this Spring, you can actually do both. If you are unaware of Versona, it is a boutique shopping experience but not with boutique price tags. The same idea of limited supply, unique pieces, quality pieces and even indie labels are available. This Spring, I actually loved a ton of stuff in the store. They had all the trends, tons of floral, blush colors and dresses that hit the mark. I did try on several items from their new Spring Look Book, but nothing really hit the mark. The long flowy floral dress did absolutely nothing for my skin color. But the skirt I am wearing is in the look book in the blush color, that color also did nothing for me, but I also noticed it in black. And of course I was sold on the black.

Black is my color. It’s so easy to style. So when I found the black version of the Spring Look Book find, I knew this may be the winner. This skirt is so versatile to style and that’s what drew me in. Y’all know I have this obsession with stripes and that’s how I immediately planned to wear it. But when I got home, I noticed the different colors in the skirt. I could wear it with dark neutrals or light neutrals, which is perfect for me, hence why I chose a khaki striped top and broke out the cognac colored heels. And ladies, break out those caged sandals from last year because they are just as popular this year. But the reason I also picked this up, it will work into the fall and winter months for me. This would be cute with a sweater, tights and booties. And that’s how I really put together an #ootd, right there in the fitting room of the store to debate whether it’s worth it or not. This skirt will be on repeat for me this Spring and Summer as I have several events to attend in the coming months and I can style it differently for each one, but also have a piece that corresponds with Spring trends.

If the trendy pieces are not really your style, Versona has a ton of versatile, neutral and quality basic pieces right now. I did pick up a few things that were not in the Spring Look Book that you will see next week on the blog. In the past they haven’t had a ton of these pieces, so it was refreshing to see that and it actually made the store feel a little more like a boutique.

So a huge thanks to Versona for letting me play dress up and pick the perfect pieces for a more Spring vibe in my closet!

Also messy curls are huge this year so head over to my Instagram Stories today to watch how I get my curls and all the products used!

Here’s this little number from the Versona fitting rooms that I love but didn’t make the cut because the arms were a little to snug for my liking.

 

Statement Neutrals

Dress // Shirt Dress // Leggings // Similar Booties // Ring &  Triangle Ring // Bag // Necklace

Whoa, I’m wearing real clothes! This whole month feels like a blur, a blur of things I can’t even wrap my head around or still yet believe. But the one thing I believe in, to make yourself feel better and more like yourself, get dressed. Really dressed, even if you are going to have a pre-Spring burger cookout with your family.

This year I pledged to buy things that were versatile in my closet and to support small business (mainly those lady bosses out there). So that is where these two dresses come from. Y’all know I love a dark stripe, so it was a no brainer on these but also the t-shirt dress can carry me through every season and mixed with other things already in my closet to create plenty of different looks. When shopping, I like to see if things can be worn different ways, like this dress is a great play on a cardigan as well. So why not? These both make a pop together and I have a ton of different ideas for each of these.

I love, love, love this necklace. It’s probably my favorite piece in my entire closet and jewelry collection. It has by far been my biggest investment besides Winter coats but it was worth the splurge (I like to think of it as an extremely late graduation/birthday gift to myself). It is a huge statement piece but in a subtle way and I picked the more natural stone over the turquoise bolo so it would go with anything and everything. Bonus points for supporting a woman run business, Beach Bones Jewelry. So be prepared to see this styled in every way possible, because I’m going to do it.

Late Valentine’s Day Outfit

Wow! What a hiatus from the blog. What a hiatus from life really. Things have been rough. I talked about the major life change that took place at the very beginning of February here but other things have come up and life has been hectic. The old wives tale about death coming in threes is true in my case and the past few weeks have been hard and trying. So because life has essentially taken over, I didn’t get to celebrate Valentine’s Day on Vday. Ish happens, am I right.

So this weekend, we actually had a little bit of time on Sunday to celebrate our own version of Valentine’s Day. It wasn’t anything like we normally do, but life isn’t really normal right now. So since we were celebrating, kind of, I wanted to wear something that reminded me of Valentine’s Day and something I may have actually worn had we celebrated on Tuesday. Blush and wine, it just did the trick. It reminded me of love and it also reminded me Spring is coming very soon. Which since life has been hectic, I haven’t even been able to catch up on the trends for this Spring or even begin to look at things that I may be adding to my closet for the new season. Which now as I’m typing this, another mental note has been placed to do that.

This post is literally all over the place, much like my life at this point. But regular fashion posts are coming back to you this week because I need a creative outlet at this time in my life. Thank you for all your kind words through this period of adjustment.

Happy New Week Loves!!

Galentine’s Day Brunching Boho Vibes

Top // Jeans // Booties // Bag // Sweater // Choker // Necklace // Ring & Ring // Hat

I wore this exact same basic outfit in Monday’s blog post, but I created a totally different look to show you the versatility of a basic outfit and mixing up the pieces. So on Monday I showed you the perfect modern rocker chic look great for date night with your SO for Valentine’s Day, so today I’m creating a boho chic look perfect for brunching with your girls for Galentine’s Day or even celebrating the day of love with your love the weekend before antique shopping, eating tacos and hitting up your favorite coffee shop!

A girl really can’t go wrong with some awesome black booties, black jeans and a striped shirt. So for this look I added an oversized cardigan to create texture and warmth and for a more casual, laid back look. To pull the whole look together a hat, oversized funky leather bag and chokers were much needed. And from a really simple #ootd, I created a funky look perfect for a weekend of celebrating with your favorite people, that doesn’t scream Valentine’s Day.

Girls, seriously invest in black jeans, black booties and a striped shirt. It’s so versatile and a life saver when you are having a “I have nothing in my closet” feeling.

Casual Beginnings

I spent the very first day of 2017 super casual. I bundled up in cozy and comfortable clothes to head out to my new favorite cafe, Bebettes. I sat and focused on what I wanted out of this year, surrounded by Asheville creatives that I only assume were doing the same thing.

I loved being casual this day. It was raining in Asheville and I was going to head up the Blue Ridge Parkway to start the year right. I didn’t need to be over dressed. I just needed to be comfortable and warm. In order for all the thoughts to come rolling in.

On Monday I talked a little about what I wanted out of the blog in 2017. So today, why not share what I want in my personal life.

This year I plan to be a little more focused in on the relationships around me. I have a small group of people I really care about and I want to deepen those relationships. I want to create a more focused, meaningful and emotionally intimate relationship with Andrew. Every relationship, no matter the kind, falls in to a sense of normalcy and borderline boringness. This year I want to make sure every week is not a slip in to comfort. I also want to cut out toxic people. I have pretty much done this, but as a blogger in a smallish town, sometimes I meet people who I feel like I am forced to be “friends” with just because we have the same hobby. And some of the people I have met, have really been amazing people, but not all are. The people who don’t lift others up and only use people to their advantage, as well as being flat out rude to people because they aren’t the same, are the ones that have to go. I officially let go of some of these negative, toxic people before the official start of 2017 and I’m already feeling more empowered and more confident in myself and my blogging.

As far as simple goals I want to cook more seafood (since it is my favorite anyways), really utilize my planner and get my life organized, to send more snail mail, to really get my skincare routine down pact and I want to create a more living space at home (essentially an oasis filled with things I really love and adore). I plan to become a little more conscious of the things I’m buying; where do they come from and how they are produced as well as filling my closet and space with things I really love and will use time and time again. I plan on taking time for myself first and foremost. I want to do things that make me happy, things that make me feel good and things that will benefit me. I plan to try as many new things as possible; whether it be coffee shops, restaurants, classes or visiting new places I want to try all the new things. I want to explore more; hike more, camp more, visit new places more. Though it will not happen this year, I would like to have a plan for a cross country trip next Summer/Fall; I really want to see the Rockies, Nashville and the filming location of the Shining (it’s really not too much to ask for). I will be visiting Hilton Head Island again this year (we always do) and this time I want to really be on vacation. I want to find the perfect balance between work, home and a social life.

Y’all I really don’t want too much out of my goals, just simple things; attainable things. So today I’m actually off to put a lot of things in my planners (yes there are two of them), have lunch by myself at a little spot I haven’t visited in so long, buy a storage container and put up a Valentine’s Day banner. I think this is a good start to the year.

What are your goals for the new year?