Rachel Zoe x Gus Mayer

I’m so thrilled to be partnering with one of my favorite local luxury stores, Gus Mayer, for an exciting event coming up in just a few weeks: the Linly Heflin Scholarship Fashion Show! This show is held every year (58 years, to be exact!) in Birmingham by Linly Heflin, an amazing local organization that provides college scholarships to women who could not otherwise afford it. This event, (being held on Wednesday, October 5th) is the primary fundraiser to provide these scholarships throughout the year through partnering fashion’s most elite brands and designers to put on a fabulous show. In fact, since the organizations beginning, it has provided over 3,000 four-year college scholarships totaling over five million dollars to Alabama women determined to get a college education. Now that is a worthy cause I can get behind.

This year’s event will raise the bar, being held at the established The Club with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres to your heart’s content, and most excitingly, the featured designer: Rachel Zoe. Rachel Zoe’s collection is, in a few words, to die for. I love that even though everything is runway quality, each piece in her collection is completely wearable in real life. In honor of the event, I’ve put together a few looks below from her collection, which you can purchase at Gus Mayer, to give you a little inspiration for all of the events you may be attending this fall! (Click the photo directly to shop!)

Click here to purchase your tickets to the Linly Heflin Scholarship Fashion Show on October 5th at 5:30 pm. I can’t wait to see you there!

signature*This post is sponsored by Gus Mayer. Interested in sponsoring a post? Shoot me an email at haveawesleyday.blog@gmail.com!

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seasons of love with kate spade new york

They say your 20’s are your selfish years: your time to grow, change and become the best version of yourself. You’ll encounter many different seasons of your life, from graduation and first jobs to complex alterations in your goals and overall life-plan. If you’re anything like me (a self-proclaimed control freak), when these seasons of change aren’t conveniently marked months in advance on your planner, a sense of panic might ensue. Just when you had it all figured out, your previously comfortable life has faded into the wings, and you are now left center stage, whether you asked for it or not. The choice is yours to embrace the spotlight.

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While listening to Sophia Amoruso’s “Girlboss” podcast at work the other day, I picked up on a quote I immediately had to jot down as a reminder. She spoke with her guests about their “girlboss” moment of that week, which, to paraphrase, she described as a moment when you felt you were living your life deliberately: running your life, instead of your life running you.

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I could sing praises about the kate spade new york brand all day (as you’ve heard me do so many times before), but my repetitiveness goes with good reason. The kate spade girl encompasses every characteristic of what this girlboss looks like: one who never forgets her core identity when faced with life’s uncertainties and instead is in passionate pursuit of owning every quirky corner of her life.

She embraces the romance of classic femininity while never shying away from the drama of eye-catching embellishment. She’s never afraid to admit that she doesn’t know all of the answers, but she is always eager to learn and create new experiences for herself. She fearlessly faces life-altering change with a cocktail in hand, and most importantly, she never apologizes for being herself.

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Your 20’s are your time to fall in love. With yourself . With your career. With your life. Above and before anything else, this is your season of love.

Buy yourself flowers for no occasion. Start a healthy workout regimen because it makes you feel good–not because you have to look good for anyone else. Laugh and cry with girlfriends over pizza and wine. Master a signature cocktail. Indulge in a pair of shoes that makes you feel fabulous from work to play. Show a little hustle, and have a lot of faith. And in spite of all the prodding from friends and relatives alike (who truly do mean the best), allow yourself time to do a little soul searching before jumping into any major commitments.

And if you remember nothing else from this post, remember this: there is strength in allowing yourself to believe that you deserve the best, even if you don’t know exactly what that looks like yet.

This is your time to become the star of your own show.

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Outfit Details:

Rose Textured Jacket // Rose Textured Ruffle Skirt // Bow Tie Blouse // Cameron Street Byrdie // Dillon Boots (all courtesy of kate spade new york)

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Xo,

signature*This post is sponsored by kate spade new york. Interested in sponsoring a post? Shoot me an email at haveawesleyday.blog@gmail.com!

Photo Credit: Cindy Shaw

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White After Labor Day

Happy Monday, y’all! Fall is just around the corner, and I could not be more ready for my favorite season. While I can’t get enough of everything fall has to offer (read: sweaters, bonfires, and PSL’s, predictably), the Alabama weather forces me to be a bit more practical with my outfit selections in this transitional season. The good news: you can have the best of both worlds if you’re willing to break a few rules. In other good news, there is no bad news.

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To make it short and sweet, forget the “no white after Labor Day” rule! Realistically, it’s way too hot in the south for dark denim to be the only option this time of year. When it’s comfortably chilly in the morning and sweltering hot by lunchtime, any southern native needs to be prepared to meet the weather halfway.

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When you’re ready to jump the gun on the crisp fall weather, Meritt Clothing Label has you covered with lightweight fall staples that are perfect for this time of year. Meritt is sold at my absolute favorite online boutique, Impressions, with so many cozy items for under $50.

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Pair a classic oversized sweater + white jeans combo with a chic mini bag (note: this size is accepted at SEC football games!) and a wide-brimmed hat for a perfect mix of a classic look with a dash of this season’s best trends.

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Sweater: Meritt via Impressions (c/o) // White Distressed Jeans (Splurge Here, Save Here) // Mini Bag (SEC approved!) (on sale now!): Coach (c/o) // Wide-Brimmed Hat: Urban Outfitters (similar) // Gold Bracelets: Taudrey (c/o)

 

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Birmingham Fashion Week | Night Three Outfit

If we’re being totally honest here, the all-black outfit featured in this post is pretty reflective of my current state of mourning over the end of the long weekend. But, I digress…

In all seriousness, this was one of my favorite outfits from Birmingham Fashion Week, for style and comfort’s sake. In true New Yorker fashion, a head-to-toe black ensemble is always a solid choice to take you from an evening event all the way through the night to celebrate. Add a little vintage Chanel and some custom-made gold bangles for a look that’s transitional from runway to real life.

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These leather leggings are surprisingly comfortable, and they’re under $50. I purchased them last year from Nordstrom, and they have been a staple piece in my going-out wardrobe ever since! This flowy black top is so easy to pair with so many things (and only $40!). However, I did have to make a small adjustment to the back before hitting the town; the open back turned out to be a lot more revealing than planned, but a simple tie of the excess fabric helped it stay looking put-together while achieving the same effect.

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I’m praying that these black booties (currently on sale!) come back in stock soon, because they were such a good purchase that I’ll be wearing all throughout fall. My Kate Spade bag, my first big-girl purchase from a couple of seasons ago, is the perfect carry-all when I need to tote my camera around for big events. You can find a similar, updated version from this season right here!

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Black Top: Tobi | Black Leather Leggings: Nordstrom | Black Suede Booties: ASOS | Vintage Chanel Necklace (similar): South Boutique | Gold Bangles: Dillen Jewelry (c/o) | Purse (similar): Kate Spade

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Xo,

signaturePhoto Credit: Lindsey Lutz of Life Lutzurious

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Birmingham Fashion Week | Runway Favorites

Ready-to-wear athleisure. Red-carpet-ready couture. A little boho-chic and a healthy dose of artful theatrics. This year’s Birmingham Fashion Week truly explored every facet of the fashion spectrum. We witnessed so many memorable moments, from the world’s first professional model with Downs Syndrome opening the show, to a Vegas-style aerial dancer paving the way to a tearful, confetti-filled finale to the tune of “Purple Rain”.

With designs shown from aspiring designers in their teens to renowned fashion icons, the heart and soul put into every look left me nothing short of inspired. While photos can only do so much justice to the quality of a show that was put on, a collection of my favorite runway moments can be found below. Enjoy!

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Xo,

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Birmingham Fashion Week | Q&A with Bradford Billingsley

About a year ago, while I was interning at Seventeen Magazine in NYC, I was sitting at my desk (mind you, roughly 1,000 miles away from home) when in walked none other than Bradford Billingsley, another Birmingham native who has taken the fashion world by storm. As graciously as I could, I completely interrupted the interview he had been invited all that way for so I could meet him and his sweet mother. One year later, we both found ourselves at BFW, Bradford being featured as the Up and Coming Designer…oh, and by the way, he’s 15 years old and the absolute coolest.

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Bradford has been drawing designs since he was 5 years old and began sewing them at age 10. His first fully developed dress was designed specifically for another Birmingham phenomenon, Baskin Champion, a now world-renowned model who made an appearance at this year’s BFW. The Rising Design Star competition (showcasing designers in middle school and high school) at BFW holds a special place in Bradford’s heart, as he competed with his designs for several years preceding his appearance on Project Runway Threads, where he walked away the winner of his season. Since then, he has been jet-setting from LA to New York (and thankfully, back to Birmingham!) to showcase his cutting-edge designs.

I was able to sit down with Bradford backstage before he revealed his latest collection to ask him a few questions about himself, his exploding career, and his collection (Hint: it’s unreal).

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WDS: Who is your biggest style inspiration?

BB: Lana Del Rey, definitely. I just love everything about her, her vintage vibe and how edgy she is. Her music is amazing too.

WDS: What was your main inspiration for the collection you’ll be showing tonight?

BB: My main inspiration was based around the color scheme of blush pink, black and white and lots of pearls. So it’s kind of a little bit Audrey Hepburn-esque, but a more updated Audrey with a little bit of edge.

WDS: Who do you imagine the person being who would wear this collection?

BB: I mean I love Rihanna, the Kardashians…I love all of them and their style, and I could see them wearing this collection. Everything is much more high-end couture than an everyday look. I haven’t branched into ready-to-wear yet, but I think I want to do a ready-to-wear line in the future and start selling my clothing.

WDS: What trends are you most excited about for this upcoming fall?

BB: You could say that I’m setting up my own trends! Such as, of course, the color pink…I love pink. I love pink especially mixed with edgier colors like black. I have one look showing tonight with a delicate lace pink bra, but it’s paired with black pants and a cropped black top. It has the juxtaposition of the light pink with the dark black, so I’d say it’s elegance with an edge.

WDS: Finally, which designer are you most excited to see present tonight at BFW besides yourself?

BB: I always love seeing the Rising Design Stars and their creations, because it’s amazing seeing what they come up with now when that’s something I used to do and got me where I am. It’s so great to see their new ideas that get cooler and cooler each year!

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It likely comes as no surprise that Bradord and I have extremely similar taste. (I mean, an Audrey Hepburn inspired collection?! You’re speaking the words of my heart here.) Bradford has such a clear vision of what he loves, and his passion is so evident in every detail of his designs. When I could spare a moment from jumping up and down his entire show, I managed to snap a few shots of some of my favorite designs of his. Feel free to swoon below.

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A special thanks to Bradford for hanging out with me for a few minutes pre-show! It is such a thrill to watch everything you have accomplished, and I am so looking forward to cheering you on through it all in the future. You’re a rockstar, Bradford.

But, one last question: How do I get to become one of Bradford’s Angels?

Xo,

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Birmingham Fashion Week | Behind the Scenes

As one of the perks of being a Featured Blogger for BFW, I was fortunate to have access to all of the madness backstage before each show. With models, designers and makeup artists galore, I was able to snap a few shots of everyone hard at work before curtain call. It truly takes an army to produce a seamless show! Check out some of the goodness below for an exclusive behind-the-scenes look.

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Xo,

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Birmingham Fashion Week | Night One Outfit

Happy Monday, y’all! This weekend was such a whirlwind of excitement in attending the 6th annual Birmingham Fashion Week as a Featured Blogger. I’ve been crazy busy shooting backstage, runway, interviewing designers and giving you the play-by-play via Instagram and Snapchat, but the fun isn’t over yet! This week, I’m giving y’all a daily wrap-up of the entire event, starting with this look from the first night of BFW that I’ve gotten tons of questions about!

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I knew this jumpsuit needed to be in my life the second I saw it. This chic little number is perfect for any event where you need to go all-out, from a fashion show to even your bridal shower (as recommended by a follower I love!). This statement piece is under $75, and even less when you apply your student discount by signing up with your student email at ASOS!

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I paired this with a few simple but stylish snakeskin accessories, including this clutch that I toted around all weekend, and some old pointy toe pumps that are extremely similar to these! Some classic personalized bracelets from Taudrey played a supporting role while still letting the jumpsuit do all the talking.

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Stay tuned for more of my BFW wrap-up this week, and find everything you need to shop this post below!

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Xo,

signaturePhoto Credit: Baili Grace Bigham

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Pre-Fall Moodboard

“Always keep your eyes open. Keep watching. Because whatever you see can inspire you.” -Grace Coddington

If you follow me on Pinterest, you’ve noticed that I’ve been going a little pin-crazy lately! With my favorite of fall season fast approaching, I’m ready for a fresh start in all areas of my life, from my wardrobe, to my flowers, to my faith and how I go about my day-to-day life. I’ve been so inspired by everything I’ve seen that I decided to put together a moodboard to compile everything that has my heart beating fast lately. (Obviously, a few furry friends are included as well!) Hopefully, you’ll find a little inspo here to get you ready for the upcoming season in all areas of your life! Be sure to follow me on Pinterest for more daily inspiration. P.S. This board is pinnable too!

fall 16 moodboard

Xo,

signature*All photos credited to Pinterest

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Old School Prep

Even though it’s still 90+ degrees outside, I am so ready for fall, and all of the newest fall collections are not helping my case. The upcoming transitional season between summer and fall is my favorite of all–partially because of football season–but also because of the endless possibilities in mixing your wardrobes from both seasons. The second I stepped into the J. Crew factory store a couple of days ago, I knew I was in trouble.

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My love of the old-school prep look spans all the way from “borrowing” my mom’s old college blazer to meet my Blair Waldorf style goals circa 2009. (Headbands included, in case you had to ask.) Thankfully, the fine line between effortless old-school style and being downright costume-esque has made itself a little clearer over time.

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The old southern theory goes, “If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it.” Though I’m sure J. Crew would find a way to state this more eloquently, its collections season after season seem to coincide with that mentality. You can always count on tailored blazers, striped t-shirts galore, chino shorts of every color, and pretty loafers to top it all off.

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The J. Crew Factory Store is my secret weapon for achieving this look from head to toe without breaking the bank. I was able to score every item in this look for 40-50% off regular price, and as an added bonus, I was still able to apply my student discount of 15% off my entire purchase since I still use my student email address! All in all, this outfit wrapped up at just under $200, and all are staple pieces I’ll be able to mix and match this fall.

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Navy Blazer – J. Crew Factory | Striped Tee – J. Crew Factory | Chino Shorts – J. Crew Factory | Navy Suede Loafers – J. Crew Factory | Purse – Kate Spade (Similar) | Clubmaster Sunglasses – Urban Outfitters

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Xo,

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