6 Tips for Trying Out New Trends

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I don’t know about you, but whenever I see new trendy pieces hitting the runways, fashion blogs, and instagrams I always go through the same cycle: (1) what is that, is that the new thing? (2) yes, apparently it is, could I pull that off? (3) maybe? I don’t know if I’m willing to shell out the money and effort to try it though… Then I usually end up going for it and find myself so happy that I gave it a try. So today’s post is all about how to try out those new trends in a less scary way.

tips for wearing the trends full outfitJeans – Express | Bralette – Victoria’s Secret (very similar) | Tank Top – American Rag | Choker – Forever 21 (similar)

Tip 1: Figure out what is holding you back

A lot of times with new trends there is some reservation involved in trying them out and before we can get on to the fun part, we have to first figure out what is holding us back and address it. The main things that I have felt, seen, and heard fall into a couple of categories: “I can’t pull that off”, “I don’t want to spend the money”, “by the time I get on board it’ll be out of style”, “I’m not sure how to wear it”, or “what will people think?”. I will address each of those separately below, but first figure out which category or categories that you fall into and take a moment to sit with them and note that they are just thoughts and that you have the power and control to change them.

Tip 2: Dressing rooms are your friend

When you are unsure if you can pull off a new trend, or how you might go about doing it dressing rooms are your friend! You can play around with the new trend in many different ways without having to commit to them. Take advantage of this by picking up a couple different versions of the new trendy item and heading to the dressing room with a bunch of different combination options and see what works and what doesn’t, play around, take some photos and if you need to give it a few days to sink in before trying out a few other ideas or taking the plunge. The one caveat to this is if your trendy item is an accessory like a choker necklace, because most places won’t let you take these into the dressing room, but you can still play around with them in store without needing to commit and buy.

wearing the trends details

Tip 3: Don’t overlook Forever 21

Awhile back I decided it was time to be an adult and stop shopping at stores like Forever 21, quality over quantity became my new motto, but this is one time that I live for it. Forever 21 and stores like it are great ways to try out new trends on the cheap before you are ready to commit to the more expensive option. When maxi dresses first became a thing I was convinced that I wouldn’t be able to pull them off, instead of shying away I hit up Forever 21 and grabbed one for a great price and once I was convinced I then went out and bought higher quality options to complete my closet.

Tip 4: Start small

Sometimes it can be hard to decide on just one piece to start trying out a new trend because every look you see featuring it has a slightly different variation. There is nothing more discouraging though then going all out shopping a new trend that doesn’t work out for you, it can even make you second guess trying the next trend and that isn’t something we want. Because of that I recommend starting small with a simple staple version of the new trendy item and once it has found a way into your heart and wardrobe then start branching out.

wearing the trends full outfit

Tip 5: Stick with your classics

When you are nervous about trying out a new trend and confused on how to incorporate it I recommend going back to your classic personal uniform and adding the trend in to that. For example to try out a choker necklace for the first time I pulled out all my favorite pieces, keeping it simple with a basic outfit of some skinny jeans and a plain tank top, letting the new trendy choker take the spotlight.

Tip 6: Confidence is everything

I’m going to let you in on a little secret that took me entirely too long to learn, and to be completely honest I’m still working on learning (fake it till you make it, right?), the number one thing that takes an outfit from alright to amazing is: confidence! I know, I know, I’m serious though, think about the last time you saw someone and you thought to yourself, “she really pulled that off” and think about why you felt that way, it was probably the way she was carrying herself.

Those are my tips and tricks to try out new trends, what did I miss, what other tips and tricks do you have for people to make trying out the new trends more approachable?

Fall Eye Makeup w/ Urban Decay Naked & Naked 3

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While my everyday makeup routine has been scraped down to the bare essentials so I can get out the door in as little time as possible, I do love when I get the time to sit down and play around with makeup a little bit more. So whenever we are going out I whether it be a holiday party, a family gathering, a little get together with friends, or just a simple date night I jump at the opportunity to do something more creative. The other night we went over to a friends house for game night, so of course I took it as a chance to pull out some eye shadow palettes I’ve been neglecting, the Naked and Naked 3 palette’s from Urban Decay.

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I chose to do this look using both the Naked and Naked 3 palette’s because I wanted a warm cranberry look, so I pulled my favorite dark reddish colors from the Naked palette and used Naked 3’s rosy hues around the edges. These are some of my go to colors in each palette and they pair really well with lots of other colors I have not only in these palette’s but others in my collection as well.

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Starting with a clean lid I like to get the base of my crease set up first, because I will build from there. I typically like to use a matte shade that is lighter than the other colors I’ll be going into my crease and outer corner with but is darker than the colors I’ll be using all over my lid. So for this look I grabbed one of my absolute favorite crease colors to use in any look, Nooner from the Naked 3 palette.

Using a large fluffy crease brush like this one from Crown Brush I start concentrating it in the outer corner of my eye and using circular motions I sweep it throughout my crease. I want the most concentration of color in that high outer corner, but as less product is left on my brush I venture out farther eventually placing color in the lower outer corner and sweeping it all the way across the crease of my eyelid until I am straight up from my inner corner. This will really frame the eye with this color, while leaving the main part of the actual lid and especially the inner corner for a brighter color later on.

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After I have that matte base down I go in with two more colors building up and blending them as I go. I start with the lighter of the two, Toasted from the Naked palette on a brush that is smaller than the one I used in the last step but larger than the one I will use for the second darker color. I concentrate this a lot more in the upper outer corner going down to the lower outer corner and about halfway across my eyelid in the crease.

Then I repeat that same step but with a darker color, Hustle also from the Naked palette, and a smaller pencil brush. With this darker color I am really only concentrating in that upper outer corner in a bit of a V shape. The basic idea for these first three colors is that I am going darker as I am concentrating the color using a smaller brush into a smaller area. This will build dimensions instead of just going straight for one color all over.

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Personally I am not a huge fan of eyeliner, that is just me so if you love eyeliner feel free to go in with your favorite black eyeliner here, instead I chose to use a black eye shadow, to do a sudo eye liner. I chose Blackheart from Naked 3 because it is a nice deep black color but the red flecks in it keep it consistent with this look. I line my upper lid with this using an liner brush.

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Finally, and again if you are more of an eyeliner fan you can swap this step with the last one and do it before eyeliner, I go in with a lighter shade to add some highlight and more dimension to the overall look. I decided to use Sin from the Naked palette for this because it blended well with the other colors I already used and is a nice bright highlight color that isn’t so light it won’t be able to cover up any fallout from the first few steps. I apply this with a flat shader brush all over my lid and in my inner crease to brighten everything up.

fall eye bare minerals concealerfall eye maybelline clump crusher

To finish off the look I always like to tidy up around the edges with some concealer in case I had any fallout or messy lines. Knowing that I will do this also allows me to be a little more carefree with the darker colors which keeps me from getting stuck not wanting to try anything new. Typically I do my eye shadow before any other makeup steps so this concealer step is where I do my full face of make up as well, before finishing off with mascara at the end. For this look because we were having a pretty casual night I didn’t want to do anything too crazy and grabbed my favorite Clump Crusher mascara from Maybelline.

fall eye urban decay naked and naked 3 palette

What are your go to makeup styles this time of year? Do you like to play around with color from time to time, or do you like to keep it simple?

The final missing piece

The final missing piece, the last little something that had the power to make the image whole. Lost forever, a blank space staring back at you right there in the middle. So close to being complete, the perfect final product ready to be laid to rest, stopped just short of the finish line. Like a game of chess knocked over one move before check mate, forever left hanging in the balance of an inevitable outcome and no outcome at all. The final missing piece, the one that got away, free to roam no longer confined to it’s quarter inch plot of existence. Out there somewhere in the world, location unknown.

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Bryan and I, mostly me at the beginning, and practically all Bryan at the end, recently finished a 1000 piece puzzle, that we started a month and a half ago. Needless to say by that time frame we weren’t all that into it for most of it’s lifespan, but that did not change the unsettled feeling in the pit of my stomach as I stared at it tonight with that hole in the middle (more like left hand side). It got me thinking about life and the perfect metaphor a puzzle is for all the journey’s we take during it.

You start a puzzle with just a bunch of mismatched pieces, all different shapes and sizes and colors, you know that they somehow will all fit together and produce the life that you are meant to live, but you aren’t sure how. You know what you enjoy, what your passions are, the things that you dislike, your strengths and weaknesses. You know what skills you possess and which ones are unlikely to ever be yours, but you don’t know how that whole picture is going to fit together. What does it mean that I have an analytical brain perfect for problem solving but a passion for creative endeavors, where will I fit in?

As each piece fits perfectly into the next and the image starts to form in front of you each new piece finds it’s home easier. That blue piece with the weird edges didn’t fit anywhere until the dog formed and now of course it’s his blanket. My love of photography from high school had no home in my everyday life and career until I discovered blogging and then it found a nice little home squished between all the words floating through my brain. There are still so many pieces in my life that are sitting there in the pile waiting to find their spot in the overall picture, and in due time I know they will.

When the going gets rough and the puzzle that once felt exhilarating and interesting loses your attention there is nothing to get you to the finish line but perseverance. Sometimes you just have to buckle down, put your nose to the grindstone and push through knowing that in the end everything will work out perfectly as it was supposed to. You might feel lost and hopeless like the piece sitting in the corner of the table trying desperately to wait as patiently as possible for it’s turn to play a role in the larger picture, but just know that everything will come together in the end exactly as it was supposed to.

Finally as it is all coming together you look around and notice that the numbers aren’t adding up. There are three spaces left and only two pieces, two spaces and one piece, one space left and nothing to fill the void. Life took an unexpected twist and left you uprooted and confused, and sometimes that is exactly where you are supposed to be. Maybe the hole is meant to be filled with the rest of your dreams and ideas, never cementing you in to just one way of living. Maybe it is there because that piece needed to go and find it’s own route. Maybe it is a sign that this was just a learning journey, but not your final destination and there is more out there for you to discover.

Do you ever have these moments like I did with that puzzle, where something seemingly meaning-less stops you in your tracks and makes you think? Tell me about it, I’d love to hear! Or do you have a different take on the puzzle metaphor? Let me know in the comments below!

Inspire

Inspire: To be inspired and to inspire others. To light a spark of passion within. To fill the world with all that drives you to be who you are. To find the meaning and the reason and the creativity in everything around you. To fuel the fire. To let the world around you bring out the best parts of you. To unearth the deepest desires from deep within one’s soul. To breath in deeply all that is light in the world.

IMG_7997This was the second year that I created a word of the year and it was the second year that I stuck to it in a very strong way for the first few months of the year and then all but forgot about it until Fall crept in. That being said just like with Balance last year although I didn’t make it as much of an intention throughout the whole year as I would’ve liked it still found it’s way into everything without my even having to invite it in. Just like with Balance as I am thinking forward to my word of 2017 I am seeing all the ways that it will carry through along with the new word, but more on that new word later.

This year I have inspired myself, I have looked for inspiration in the world, I have let that inspiration wash over me when I have found it, and I have hopefully inspired others to continue on their own journeys as well. With a month and a half left in the year I am trying to recommit to the word and see where else it can take me before we close out 2016.

When we were in Moorea and Bora Bora on our honeymoon I was the most present I think I have ever been in my life (definitely in the top 5). Bryan and I were constantly struck by how beautiful our surroundings were and how amazing it was that we were there. After being swept up in the craziness that is wedding planning and getting married it felt so good to relax and have no responsibilities for days on end. I found myself sitting around at peace with the world and my place with it. Although I wasn’t thinking about my world of 2016 at the time I was filling up my energy tank with the inspiration of my surroundings.

This year I pushed myself so far out of my comfort zone that I forgot exactly what my comfort zone looked like and how to tap back into it. Getting up on stage to perform a couple weeks ago was a big step for me. The word inspire was not on my mind as I was preparing or competing, but as I reflected afterwards I realized that it was there in every crack and crevice of the experience. I was inspired by others I had seen perform to get up on stage. I found inspiration for my choreography and character in everything around me and from deep within myself. I was told by others that I inspired them with my work and performance. Inspiration surrounded my dance journey.

Even without the intention around it Inspire found it’s way into every part of my life this last year. Before I move on to 2017 and my new word, I want to give it some real intention. Did you have a new years resolution or word for 2016 that you have forgotten as the year has gone on? Have you picked it back up again or left it behind on purpose? I’d love to hear all about it in the comments!

Social Media

The world is literally at your fingertips, just a click of the mouse and a couple keystrokes away at any given hour of the day. The wealth of information in this world is all right there in front of you waiting to be discovered and sifted through. People you haven’t seen in years, have never met, will never meet can all be a part of your life, and you a part of theirs. The ability to effect change in the world can be as simple as a few words typed out on a keyboard from a coffee shop on a foggy morning. With all that power though, there is a price.


The last week and a half have been a bit of a roller coaster and social media was in the cart with me aiding me along the way. Last Sunday I competed in my first pole dance competition. After months of preparing, choreographing a piece, building strength and skill, adding character and dimension, and going through every emotion in the book it was time to get on stage and perform. The night before competition I lay awake adrenaline pumping through my veins with no sleep to be had. Every negative thought of how I wasn’t ready or wasn’t good enough or wasn’t something enough running endlessly through my brain. Then I got on Facebook.

That night Facebook soothed me. The competition prep group I was in was filled with words of encouragement, stories from other competitors laying awake in the same boat as me. I felt less alone. I felt like I could push through and get up on that stage because I would be doing it beside all these other incredible women who had my back and wanted me to do well. Without Facebook and that community I’m not sure how much farther I would have spiraled down before coming back up for air. Facebook was the breath of fresh air that my lungs so desperately needed that night.

Tuesday night I went to bed in shock, the election had not at all gone the way I had been expecting. All the polls and everything I had been seeing and reading and interacting with led me to believe Clinton would walk away with an easy victory, so why were the numbers showing red? Before calling it a night I decided to open Facebook and Twitter and see what they had to share with me. What I found was a lot of anger, pain, disbelief, and hurt. I found words that brought out the worst fears inside of me and I quickly closed the apps and deleted them from my phone and lay awake wondering what the next day would look like.

Wednesday I logged back into Facebook and found a completely different story, I found hope, I found passion, I found resilience and fight and a desire to make the world a better place. I found everything that I was needing. I found a home where I could crawl into like a comfy bed and be held in my grief. Everyone was collectively grieving a loss they hadn’t expected together while making plans to do their part and make the world a better place and shine their light and love out into the world. Facebook was again the exact thing that I needed, I felt the same comfort I had found the night before my competition and reinstalled it onto my phone, diving right back in without looking back.

Then Thursday happened, the story changed again. The echo chamber of my feeds took another turn and I spiraled down right on with it. I had handed the reigns of my emotions over to a social media network and let it run the show. I spiraled back into fear and hate and worry and darkness. I read story after story of all the pain people were feeling all the real physical danger they were finding themselves in. I watched argument after argument unfold in front of my eyes and I clicked and scrolled and leaped in head first to all of it. By the time I went to bed I was breathless and exhausted from a day of panic and intense emotion.

Facebook and Twitter can be beautiful places for community and connection. Places to go to and feel comforted and like you aren’t so alone in your feelings and your place in the world. I saw this the night before my competition and I saw it again the day after the election. They can also be divided echo chambers of anger, they can be platforms for people to argue with no expectation of understanding or listening, they can be places to go and vent and for that hurt and sadness to gain momentum and grow and spread until it takes over. I’ve seen that for awhile now, but it has really become clear in the past week.

At the end of the day they are just tools. Tools that in my times of need helped me up. Tools that in times of peace and calm in my life pulled me down out of that light. I have taken a step back in the last week to evaluate my relationship with them. I can’t deny the powerful and positive impact they can have, but I also can’t let the negative side pull me out of the light any longer, it isn’t healthy. I don’t want to put my head in the sand and pretend that life isn’t still happening around me, but I can’t be inundated with it constantly and let it effect my life so strongly.

For now Instagram is my jam. Facebook and Twitter I have mostly unplugged from, going on once every day or two or three to check in and check just my notifications and then get off without scrolling through the feed. I’ll see going forward how that changes, but right now I need a break from the constant information overload that I had given the power to change my emotions without my notice.

Now I’m curious, what are your thoughts on social media? Is it a positive impact in your life? How do you shield yourself from the more negative side of social media?

November 1st

Every day can be a fresh start, a new beginning, the opening of a new passage way, a step in the direction of something amazing, all you have to do is decide that today is the day. With November officially here, autumn filling our lungs and the holidays slowly creeping in all around us, it is all too easy to say that today is not the day. The holidays are never the right time, there is entirely too much going on. Bright lights and shiny baubles distracting us, pulling us in so many directions it feels as if we are splitting right down the middle. So we shove our hands into warm mittens, grab the mug of hot cocoa and say, “I’ll start on January 1st”. It feels like it is just around the corner, easy enough to reach and set the heavy pamphlet of our dreams on, but still far enough away, it doesn’t need to bother us now.


Lately the days have been blurring past me, days turning into weeks, weeks into months, shoving their way past me as I try to grasp on with no success. Just yesterday I was getting engaged, planning my wedding, getting a new job, getting married, going on an amazing honeymoon, and starting to work on a competition dance piece that was so far in the future it seemed I would be able to learn to fly by the time it arrived. Today I sit staring at the calendar counting down the 5 short days until I am standing on stage running through the movements that have become so intertwined with my body they feel as natural as waking up in the morning, getting dressed, and driving to work. Only a couple sleeps later there will be a new president announced and the election posters and ads will slowly crumple and fade away, crawling back into their holes waiting to come back out in another 4 short years. Then Thanksgiving will pop it’s peaceful head up and welcome me in with warm loving arms, just to toss me into the madness that is Apple Cup the next day. Without even realizing it is happening 2017 will sweep in and wash away all of 2016, brush it under and out and away, filing it under “the past” never to be brought back to “the present” ever again.

I’ve been realizing lately that I have been rushing towards the next big target, hitting one and jumping right on to the next for so long. My body and my brain are draining their energies with little more than a Saturday off here and there to replenish and revive themselves. First it was planning a wedding from the ground up, then as things settled on the wedding front the job search become my number one priority, and as soon as that was in place the final wedding and honeymoon to do’s showed up. Once we were back and rested from our honeymoon I dove head first into planning my sister in laws shower and then without losing a step moved on to choreographing and practicing a competition dance routine. Now as that is coming to an end my brain immediately piped up, whispering in my ear “National Novel Writing Month is November, don’t forget you wanted to try that again”.

The last thing I want is to sit around complacent in my life, not pushing myself on to the next thing, learning and growing and working to reach my full potential and become my best version. Yet I have recently noticed that this constant, on to the next thing attitude, is not fulfilling me the way I have tried so desperately to convince myself that it must be. Hence a compromise had to be made. Starting today, November 1st, I will be writing every day as one would expect for National Novel Writing Month, but not towards a novel, not towards any goal, not in any format. It may be a blog post today, a 2 sentence journal entry as I rush from dance to dinner to bed tomorrow, a poem on Saturday when my nerves are at their all time peak before competition, and a chapter of a book on the following Thursday when the fact that I have nothing I need to do, nowhere I need to be, finally catches up with me.

November 1st I am bringing monthly goals back into my life, but as with writing not in as strict of a way, this month there might be three (write, meditate, and move every day) and next month there could be one, the next month just a feeling I want to embrace, or a mantra I want to follow. November 1st I am starting fresh, taking a big deep breath of autumn air and saying to myself: it is alright to slow down, it is alright to speed up, it is alright to come to a halting stop and stand completely still for a few days, it is alright to write a novel next year, or the year after, or never, it is alright to compete in dance this year, and focus on doing it just for myself and not an audience after that, or to take a break, or to start working on the next piece, it is ok to fall, it is ok to get up, it is ok to take a step backwards, and two steps forwards, and three to left, and jump up and down, and fall over. It is alright to be yourself in this moment, and a different version of yourself in the next moment. It is alright to be different. It is alright to not have a plan and a goal and the path forward laid out, and it is alright to know exactly where you want to be in a year.

November 1st is a fresh start.

Honeymoon Recap: Moorea and Bora Bora

I’m going to keep this introduction short because this is going to be a long picture heavy post. For our honeymoon we went and explored French Polynesia. After a full day of travel we spent one night on Tahiti and then ferried to Moorea for four nights in a beach bungalow and finally plane hopped to Bora Bora for three nights in an overwater bungalow, and then back home to spend a wonderful fourth of July weekend with family in Chelan, WA before heading back to work.

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After a full day of traveling we arrived in Tahiti at 10pm and went straight to our hotel and passed out. The next morning we had a few hours to explore the black sand beaches before heading to catch the ferry to Moorea.
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When we got to Moorea our hotel gave us a half bottle of champagne and a floral arrangement, and since it was still raining we decided to enjoy both under the cover of our deck awning.IMG_7718IMG_7719IMG_7725 IMG_7736IMG_7737IMG_7742

There were flowers everywhere and on everything, the entire time I kept finding myself just wanting to take in all the gorgeous scenery.IMG_7744IMG_7748IMG_7800

This swimsuit I was in love with when I bought, but honestly it is terrible. The fabric gets really loose and saggy when wet and causes it to be nearly impossible to untie and get back off.
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Swimming with sting rays and sharks was terrifying at first, but I’m glad we did it, although I can’t imagine we will do it again.
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I’m always down for some paddle boarding, I kind of wish we had one to be able to go more often around home.IMG_7833IMG_785920160624_085336

ATV’ing around Moorea was one of our favorite things we did. It was so much fun to see the island from the inside out and it was fun to get a little mud on the tires!20160624_09533320160624_10385120160624_110228DSCN8219DSCN8220DSCN822520160626_174845

Bora Bora was gorgeous, the waters were so clear I could have just stood in and stared at them forever.20160627_115044IMG_7887IMG_7909IMG_7934IMG_7940IMG_7969IMG_7981IMG_7990

Cheers to the future!IMG_7997