Happy Friday! Today’s post is little bit outfit deets, a little bit of what’s on my radar lately, and a healthy dose of #realtalk! Let’s just dive in, shall we?!
Today’s post shows off my forever ‘go-to’ (aka if don’t know what to wear, I’ll always reach for this) outfit. This is no surprise and I’ve said this time and time again how much I love gingham so I feel silly continuing to talk about it on here! But I will say that I’m just so thankful it’s so ‘in’ right now so I can score all sorts of gingham options! This exact top I’m wearing is an old Target find and it’s held up beautifully. But perhaps when it poops out I’ll go the J.Crew route for a replacement since I think it’s a staple that may be worth a higher price tag. I will say that J.Crew is currently having a good 30% off sale so it would be a good time to snag one (in a range of color options) for yourself!
As far as the accessories (my best friends, always)… I love my fun pops of pink paired with classic Jack Rogers! I wear Jack Rogers spring through fall and I’m so thankful their season has finally returned! Jack Rogers certainly aren’t a cheap pair of sandals, but they really do last. I’ve worn this pair day in and out for the past 3 years and though I think this spring and summer season may be their final run, I have definitely got my moneys worth! This outfit may not be the most original in the world of fashion bloggers, but it’s perfectly ‘me’!
On My Radar: Bargain Shopping for the Win!
I shared a little bit about this yesterday Snapchat and this Instagram post yesterday, but I wanted to dive a little deeper here today!
I love a good deal, bargain, dupe, sale, etc. Yes, I have my ‘things’ that I consider splurges and/or worth the higher price tag. But ultimately, whether it’s for my home/wardrobe/beauty routine, I’m constantly on the hunt to find my needs and wants for a bargain of a price!
We have a fair share of fun trips and events planned for this spring, so naturally my shopping list for the traveling and occasions has been growing! I’ve been consistently scouring my favorite stores online and in person for sales and deals and I’ve been really successful! For the majority of my finds, I have the most success at Target, TJ Maxx, Marshalls, and even ROSS! My tips shopping these stores? Go in with no expectations, have patience, and go often. I’m fortunate that my work schedule allows for a lot of little breaks throughout my week where I have 20 minutes here and there to pop in stores and do a quick browse. I always find the most gems when I’m not looking for anything specifically! If you have the patience for this, it’s truly the best way to shop on a budget!
I’ve always been this type of shopper… but since I started blogging, I’ve been hesitant to share outfits here with these types of finds since I can’t link anything specifically for y’all to purchase online for yourselves and I didn’t want that to be discouraging to my readers. I definitely understand that it can be frustrating to fall in love with something specifically, only to find that it’s years old and no longer available. But after thinking about it a lot, I’m going to just go for it. My idea is that I’ll consistently style what’s already in my closet (old and new) and then round-up a few alternatives/similar options online if you’re truly interested in shopping. Really, my main goal in blogging outfits (or anything, for that matter) is to provide inspiration above anything else! If I wear something that makes you feel encouraged to try something new, gives you ideas on how to style items in your own closets, or shows off something you may be able to snag at a discount store as well…. then I’d truly be such a happy lady!
Soooo… all that kinda leads me into my final thoughts…
I’m just going to say it: blogging is weird. What was once a platform for inspiration for readers and a creative outlet for its authors, has now become the new normal for the world of PR & Marketing. And I get that world! I have a degree in that world! And I appreciate and respect that world. But that world is also kinda exhausting me as of late.
I could really get lengthy here as to what is fully contributing to my blogging exhaustion, but I’ll spare us all. Haha! Let me attempt to “summarize” below:
– Instagram. I firmly believe that it’s a highlight real. Whether you’re a blogger or not, we’re all posting our ‘best selves’ for our followers to see and leaving out the not so pretty ‘behind the scenes’. And I don’t really think that’s a bad thing! I personally enjoy taking the time to style and photograph things for this blog and Instagram. It’s a creative process for me! And I share it with that mentality. So on the flip side, does anyone really want to see my pile of laundry I need to fold? Is that inspiring and fun to look at? I don’t really think so. But I appreciate a healthy dose of honesty mixed in social media whether it’s on InstaStories, Snapchat, or in an honest and heart-felt caption. That being said, I get sad that the honest posts seem to be fewer and farther between for us all these days. I also hate how I just can’t scroll through Instagram lately without feeling like I’m struggling with comparison, feelings of inadequacy, and frustration. It just leaves me feeling low and just plain bummed out.
– The consumerism of blogging is getting to me. Is it just me or does it feel like there are always about 100 “must have” items out there every season that every brand and blogger is promoting and you’re seeing it day in and out in your feeds. Also, they’re not cheap! So many of these hot items are at least $100 which is promoted as a “steal” and I’m over here shopping at ROSS. I don’t want to sound contradictory, which I’m sure I still will since the bulk of this blog post is talking about shopping and contains links that you can shop – some of which aren’t ‘cheap’. But what I’m trying to share is that whether you’re a blogger or not, or no matter how much your budget for shopping is… it’s hard to watch big-time bloggers (who have turned their sites into full-time jobs) as they are consistently being sent, purchasing, or selling clothes, bags, and shoes that are worth thousands of dollars like it’s no big deal. It just feels like too much to me. And I hate that! Because the reality is that this is their job! They’re supposed to be up with the trends and showing what’s new and on-trend! You can’t fault them for that. But it’s just starting to feel inauthentic to me. And I wish there was some magical way where it all would feel a little bit more ‘normal’ or at least genuine. I have no idea what that looks like, but I’m just saying I wish that it existed.
– Stats, following, bots, algorithm, engagement…. are all dirty words to me as of late. They probably don’t mean anything to you unless you’re blogging and consider that a praise!!! Essentially, they all point to this idea that how many people follow you on the internet = success. Ew. I mean, how gross is that?! And I guess this isn’t even just a blogging thing. If you think about it, I think deep down we all sadly struggle with what success looks like in our lives, our jobs, our personal lives, and how others perceive that success from the outside. Again, yuck. I’m sad and embarrassed to admit that this struggle has been stronger for me than usual and to be perfectly honest, I haven’t surrendered that struggle fully to the Lord. I’m continually working on it. I just can’t say enough how grateful I am that though I may struggle, my heart knows that He is the only one who can provide me with true self-worth. Amen?!
So there’s all that.
I hope it didn’t feel like too much of a rant, but more just an honest confession that what’s been on my mind lately. It’s definitely been hindering my motivation to blog lately and really that is just so silly!!!
This blog is not my full-time job. And I’ve been so blessed to have even had the opportunities I’ve been given to grow this blog! And I really am grateful for both of those things! So I’m frustrated that I’ve been feeling weighed down by these thoughts and feels lately in terms of blogging. But I really do feel like I’m turning a corner with it all by even just putting it out there for y’all to read! I’m inspired to continue to strive to keep this whole blogging situation as authentic as I can and above anything else… keeping it FUN for me to write and FUN for y’all to read!
Sooo me and my recent bargain finds are excited to get to styling some new inspirational outfits this coming weekend! I’m also eager to spend a bit more time with my husband as he’s been working a whole lot lately. And I’m also looking forward to some family time scattered throughout the weekend, too.
Thanks so much for stopping by and reading here today! Wishing y’all a happy weekend!
SHOP this POST (or go to Ross to hunt for similar items 😉 ):