Archives for March 2015

Boss Lady Tips: How to Get Your Dream Internship

So, you want to land yourself a kick-butt internship? This summer I have the incredible opportunity to be one of Seventeen Magazine’s Photo Interns, but it didn’t come easily. If you’re ready to work hard and show the world what you’re made of, I want to share with you everything I can to help you land your dream internship!IMG_7548-1-cb  {mug from my favorite gift boutique, Fox and Clover, and shoes from Madden Girl!}

Here are 10 tips I think everyone should apply to rocking internship applications, and being the boss lady we all know you are!

takeadviceStuck on where to apply? Editor in Chief of Cosmopolitan, Joanna Coles describes in her letter from the editor in the February 2015 issue that even she didn’t always know what she wanted to do as a career. In fact, she credits her discovery of her passion for fashion magazines to herself as a child.

She describes designing clothes for her dolls to wear being a pertinent clue to her future career at a fashion magazine, and encourages those unsure of their career path to seek the same enlightenment: “It’s possible that your younger years hold clues to your ideal future. Go detective on yourself and see what hints old photos and journals hold. Ask your family what your early interests were.”

Personally, I was known as the ridiculous little girl who would bring an entire suitcase full of magazines to sleepovers and had a giant collage of Seventeen magazine covers hanging above my bed. So yeah, subtle hints help.duedatesBy this, I don’t mean send in your application 2 months late. When I applied for my internship at Seventeen, they hadn’t even posted a job listing for the summer semester yet on Ed2010.com, where I suggest you check religiously for magazine internships. I checked the listing for the previous year to get a general idea of an application date, but I said forget that. I wanted to be the first person they saw when considering applicants for the coming semester. I sent in my application materials in January, and got to interview in February, before most people had even applied! Trust me when I say that every place I applied brought this up in my interview–they will notice your efforts.connectionsEven if you’ve missed the boat for internships this summer, show them your interest in the program now. Send a simple email stating how interested you are in the position, send your resume, and ask them if there is anything they can suggest to do to make sure you are their top candidate for the position next time around. Odds are, they won’t even respond to that question, because they are not an advice column, but the point is only to let them know who you are.

At least in the magazine world, I’ve gotten the vibe that job titles change a lot. For example: If you email an assistant to an editor now, this time next year, she could be promoted to the editor, and bang, you have a year-long connection others would kill for.planaheadSemesters away from home are not cheap, and a good portion of internships are unpaid. You’re a big girl now, and big girls pay their rent. I can’t imagine anything more heartbreaking than getting my dream internship and having to turn it down because I can’t support myself financially.

The best advice I have ever heard regarding this is “don’t give up what you want most for what you want now.” Take a year, get a job, put everything except food and gas money into savings, and you can make a real difference in how prepared you’ll be. Sure, it might mean passing up that killer pair of heels, but I know it was the most rewarding feeling to tell my interviewer, “I know this is unpaid. I’ve known I wanted to be here for over a year, and I’ve spent that year working and saving money so I can be here. I’m ready.”

utilizeDon’t act like you haven’t stalked all of your ex-boyfriends’ new girlfriends on Instagram before. You’re a pro, so use it to your advantage. One of the smartest things I did during my application process was to search different hashtags, such as variations of #seventeenintern, #cosmointern, etc., which ended up having a ton of great results from past interns.

From there, I commented on their pictures, told them I was applying for the same internship, and asked if I could send them an email with questions about applying. The majority of them were incredibly helpful, and offered advice on everything from what to wear to providing actual questions they were asked in their interviews. Not only will these be great connections you’ll keep in your job field, but it also makes a pretty funny story to get your interviewers laughing!

beaggressiveBefore I got any sign of life from Seventeen, I must have emailed my interviewer 3 or 4 times. Follow up, follow up, follow up. If you emailed a company on a Monday, follow up on the next Monday. And the next one after that. And the next one after that. Less than a week is being too pushy, but these places get busy, so you have to be their reminder.

The first time I received a response from my interviewer was when I laid everything out on the table. The email went something like this: “Here is my resume, cover letter, and portfolio. I will be in your building on x date, and I would like to request an interview with you. Xoxo, Gossip Girl.” (Kidding about the last part). Don’t ask them if they will let you in, tell them, and be prepared.

doyourreasearchWhen I interviewed at Seventeen, they were in the process of hiring a new Editor in Chief. I had no idea what portion of the process they were in, so you bet I made certain to know the names of the previous Editor in Chief, the Acting Editor in Chief, as well as the new Editor in Chief.

It’s always a possibility that they will ask you what you know about their company history, so make sure you’re at least familiar with the information on Wikipedia. It is important to know where the company came from, but I would argue that it is even more important to know where the company stands today. Memorize that masthead. I am not kidding at all when I say I made flashcards of every person listed who currently worked where I interviewed. I would suggest even Googling a few of them to be familiar with their faces in case they walk in in the middle of your interview (Cough, cough, Joanna Coles. *faints*).

customizeSpeaking of resumes, cover letters, and portfolios, customize absolutely everything. This takes so much time if you’re applying 10 different places, but if you care enough to dedicate time to it, they will notice. Write something that you are proud of, and put your passion, efforts, and research into it. Don’t be afraid to be your clever self! If you don’t care enough about a position to spend time writing a cover letter tailored to them, then simply don’t apply–it’s not for you.

professorsIt’s kind of funny how I’ve just now realized that my professors are actually really excited about helping their students. Advising appointments don’t have to happen just once a semester, and they don’t have to be all about picking your classes. I reached out to my adviser about my internship applications, and he was full of great advice and support all along the way.

If any of you are like me, you seriously struggle with interviews. I could talk to you all day about my passions in a casual setting, but call it an interview, and I forget the entire English language. Ask your professors and advisers if any of them could meet for a mock interview. These are awesome to help you shake off your nerves, and I probably scheduled 5 of them leading up to my interviews! They are definitely worth the time commitment, and by the time my actual interviews rolled around, I felt completely confident.

investI’m convinced that the best thing I did throughout my interview process was investing in personalized portfolios to leave behind.

Here is what my portfolio included:

-Cover Letter (customized!)

-Resume (customized!)

-8-10 of my best images suited to that specific magazine

-A simple Instagram Highlights page (for a little personality and flair!) pictured below!

Seventeen-Instagram_HighlightsI found a small portfolio book from Michael’s to slip everything in, and even though putting several of these together was not cheap, I looked as it as an investment, not a burden. This shows your interviewers, again, how much you truly care, and it gives them a way to remember you even after you leave! And of course, you should never forget to send a handwritten thank-you note the day after your interview!

 

You’re all ready to rock and roll! Did my tips help you out? Do you have anything you think I should have added? Sound off below with any questions or comments! Now, go out there and go get ’em, you boss lady.

And, as always, Have A Wesley Day.

xoxo

signature*This is a sponsored post, but all opinions are my own.

10 Ways to Get Through Your Mid-Semester Slump

Back from Spring Break already? *Le sigh* I know as well as anybody how difficult it can be to get back into the swing of school and work after an entire week away from reality! The Mid-Semester Slump is so real, and I’m here to help you conquer it! Here are 10 tips to help you get through your mid-semester slump.

1. Spend some quality time with your cup of Joe. I am such a coffee addict, and I love dressing up my cup-o-life, as I like to call it, with this adorable cat mug from Fox and Clover. Fox and Clover is an adorable online boutique that sells the sassiest coffee mugs that make perfect gifts for your BFF, or yourself! This cat mug {almost} makes up for the no-pet rule from my landlord (aside from my fish, Walter, but shhhh…), and it comes in both black and white, so take your pick, girlfriend! Just don’t forget your Crest Whitestrips to keep those pearly whites from staining!

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This comfy graphic tank is from Charlotte Russe, and you can find tons of similar ones here!

 

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2. Make yourself a nutritious and delicious breakfast. I can’t claim that I’m the best about making myself a giant, delicious breakfast every morning, but I do know how down I feel later that morning when I have no energy to work with! It’s so worth it to give yourself an extra energy boost, and if you whip up some yummy breakfast treats earlier in the week (like Sunday afternoon!), then you won’t have to worry about finding ingredients when you can barely open your eyes!

Here are a few smoothie recipes I found from some fellow bloggers that I am dying to try soon!

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Photo courtesy of Pinterest and Hott Mama in the City: Peach and Strawberry Smoothie

 

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Photo courtesy of Pinterest and Avery Cooks: Orange PushUp Smoothie

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Photo courtesy of Pinterest and Skinny Mom: Skinny Tropical Protein Smoothie

 

3. Get everything (and I mean everything) on your calendar now. There are only a few weeks left in the semester, and for whatever reason, everyone loves packing in their events in that small window of time! From weddings, big tests and projects to formals, make sure you’re organized so you don’t overbook! Make sure to go ahead and schedule your advising appointment for next semester, and look up when you need to return the textbooks you rented! Bring out that syllabus that hasn’t seen the light of day since the first day of class, and stop making excuses! It is never too late to start using a planner.

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4. Give yourself a clean and colorful workspace. I know personally that my brain likes color. Being a creative, I want my desk to reflect my personality, but also be clean and functional at the same time. Consider giving your desk a little spring makeover to inspire yourself to get a jump start on that research paper, or dedicating your afternoon to writing the whole next week’s blog posts in one sitting.

You use your computer every single day, so shouldn’t it be fun? Spruce it up with this Fox and Clover pineapple print mousepad. How. Much. Fun. Is. This?! Ahhhhh. Y’all already know that I’m all about some pineapples prints this season, so I am totally in love with this great find that is so unique and colorful!

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Dress up your desk with these fun Kate Spade Idiom Pencils or these Kate Spade “Dot the I’s” Pencils! Not only are pencils a desk necessity (obviously), but they make great decorations as well!

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5. Treat yo’self. Give your skin the TLC it deserves with one of these masks from Target! These little pouches of facial masks are perfect for a one time use when you’re testing out all of the many variations. The best part? They only run around $2 and totally revamp your skin–trust me on this one.

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Nothing makes me feel totally put-together like a fresh manicure in a bright, springy color. I love this polish from Essie in Cute as a Button! Pro tip, if you weren’t blessed with nail painting talents, but don’t feel like you can splurge on a full manicure, just ask the salon for a polish change. Although this does mean sacrificing cleaning up your cuticles, they only run around $5-$10, which is totally do-able for a quick fix.

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6. Start a devotional. No matter your beliefs, I think it is so important for everyone to spend a little time reflecting on the day ahead. It gives you internal peace knowing that everything is going to be okay, and you can make it through whatever the day brings you!

Personally, I am a Christian, and I love spending some time with Jesus Calling in the morning. Not only is it available in book form here, but also in an app here! The app even has an alarm feature that you can set on your own to be woken up or reminded during the day to read your daily devotion!

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If you prefer a devotion that isn’t necessarily religiously based, I highly recommend Simple Abundance, which you can find right here! This devotional book is dedicated to helping you be your best self, and although it encourages you to connect with your spirituality, you’ll find that it encourages a broad spectrum of beliefs.

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7. Spare some time for a walk or run outside.  Not only is exercise in your best interest, but getting some fresh air and Vitamin D is always an instant mood lifter! When you feel like you just can’t study anymore, grab a friend and spend 30 minutes walking or running outside. If it’s an option for you, skip out on driving to class! Leave a little bit earlier and make the hike. You’ll thank yourself after spending the rest of the day sitting at a desk.

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8. Buy yourself a seasonal candle. I am a total candle junkie! Pumpkin Spice in the fall, cinnamon in the winter, you name it! It’s pretty much become a tradition to do a little candle shopping at the start of every season. I recently spent some time scouting out the candle aisle in Target, and trust me when I say I inspected every single one. I found this glorious scent of Grapefruit Verbena that is currently burning in my bathroom. It is light and fruity, and it truly gives the whole room a lift!

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9. Get inspired! Okay, some of the quotes on Pinterest are totally cheesy. But, there is some good stuff out there too! If you have some down time, search the quote section and get inspired! If something strikes you, print it out and make yourself a quote wall for daily reminders on how you want to live your life. Check out some of the quotes below that are inspiring me to be my best self!

quotes10. Make daily to-do lists. Give yourself a break! Break big projects down day by day and prioritize. I have my fair share of projects all due at the end of the semester, so trust me when I say I’ll be taking my own advice. At this point in college, my professors have stopped giving us schedules, only final due dates. I don’t know about y’all, but that makes me nervous. But, it doesn’t have to be that way!

You want a schedule? Make your own. Give yourself little due dates for bits and pieces of your project, and form those into daily to-do-lists that are easily manageable. Breathing easier yet?

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Second semester, bring it on! If you have any tips of your own for how you get through your mid-semester slump, leave them in the comments below!

Have a great semester, and a Wesley Day!

xoxo

signature*This is a sponsored post, but all opinions are my own.

If You Like Piña Coladas

“If you like piña coladas…” then you’ll love this look by Pants Store and Krystalize Jewelry.

It is officially SPRING! Which means, sunshine, bright colors and patterns, and the yummiest of fruits to brighten every day! My favorite place to go for fresh fruits and veggies is my local Farmer’s Market, so what better place to have a little photo shoot? I love supporting the vendors by buying locally, and the produce is always guaranteed to be colorful and fresh as can be! Plus, the vendors definitely got a kick out of watching me play around with a pineapple on my head!

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This look is inspired by all of the things that bring sunshine to my day, from pineapple prints to actual pineapples, and some amazing jewels to top it all off!

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First off, I’m in love with this super soft, yellow Piko top. Piko tops are simply a must-have for your wardrobe this season. They’re long enough to pair with leggings, but also easy to tie up when you want to pair them with a cute pair of shorts! Not to mention, they come in basically any color you can imagine, all available at Pants Store. (You can shop here online, or visit any of their stores in Birmingham, Leeds, and Tuscaloosa!) And, for any of you confused on how to pronounce Piko, (shoutout to you, Courtney, for helping me out on this one!) it’s pronounced “pee-koh” not “pie-koh” like I thought for far too long! Embarrassing, huh?;)

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These. Shorts. Talk about love at first sight! Also from Pants Store, these pineapple printed chinos are just too much fun! The crisp, well crafted fabric won’t wrinkle, and the colors just happen to look great with a mass of your other favorite spring tops! Pineapples are the print to wear right now, so these shorts are totally on point with the trend.

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Kristalize Jewelry is an amazing jewelry boutique located in Birmingham, and you can also shop it online by clicking here! Everything from Kristalize is handmade, so that means guaranteed attention goes into the quality creation of every item! Their signature beaded bracelets look amazing stacked together, because four is better than one, right?!

If you want to shop the exact stack I’m wearing, I’ve laid it all out for you below!

1. Cassie Bracelet

2. Fiona Bracelet

3. Laura Bracelet

4. Nikki Bracelet

 

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I also love wearing Kristalize’s choker necklaces! Chokers have re-immersed as a trend this year, but I think this is a much less 1990’s way to do it! I’ve always been wary of layering necklaces, but Kristalize makes it easy! This Baby Shark Tooth Choker adds a unique touch without being too edgy, and I love pairing it with my May Necklace, that sits just below the choker for a perfect layering formula!

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Have A Wesley Day, and a colorful, sunshine-filled spring!

xoxo

signature*This is a sponsored post, but all opinions are my own.

Red, White & Burch

What would American fashion today be without Tory Burch? This noted fashion designer has become renowned for her clean lines and modern take on classic pieces that will be in style for years to come. Her coveted pieces are adored by every modern woman, myself included. Tory Burch is also listed as the 79th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes, so cheers to you, Tory!

What better way to celebrate this American staple in women’s fashion than with a color scheme dedicated to our great country? Not only this, but the Tory Burch Private Sale is happening now, in case you didn’t know, and only lasts through Monday, March 23rd. So, click here to access it, and without further adieu, I present to you, Red, White, and Burch (told you I like my puns).

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Let’s start by talking about these pants. These Emmy Printed Jeans from Tory Burch have become some of my absolute favorites, gifted to me by my fabulous sister! I love the minimal printed design to upgrade my everyday jeans, and it also helps that red and navy are two of my favorite colors! I paired them with this two-tone leather top from Ann Taylor that is a wonderful addition to any closet, and it’s currently on sale!

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The thing that really makes these pants for me is the adorable buttons placed on the ankle. It’s an added touch that doesn’t necessarily shout who you’re wearing, but gives the pant a signature touch to signify its authenticity.

You can find a similar patterned Emmy Printed Jean from Tory Burch’s Private Sale right here and a solid colored version here, and for a more cost-friendly look, Old Navy has a wonderful selection of patterned pants right here, currently on sale!

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I love these quilted two-tone flats (pictured above) from Ann Taylor that are easily paired with just about anything. You can find an almost identical version here, and the same look for a great price here.

A standout red handbag is something a modern woman’s closet can’t live without. Tory Burch pulls off the staple red handbag flawlessly, of course. You can find some gorgeous bags similar to the one pictured right here, here and here.

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The frugal find I have been most proud of has to be this Lucite Cuff from Tory Burch. I snagged this a few years ago in both white and tortoiseshell, because it only cost $50, no lie. Nowadays, these are still selling like hotcakes on eBay, which I definitely recommend checking out, as long as you aren’t fooled by some sellers’ $100 price tag.

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These geometric pave studs are a simple yet impactful statement piece. I love these studs from Nordstrom, as well as this set of three studs for a steal of a price. I think I good pair of studs is akin to a swipe of lipstick: something you should never leave the house without!

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Speaking of lipstick, I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect shade of pink for everyday wear. It just occurred to me that every shade of lipstick in my current makeup collection is a statement shade, so I borrowed this gorgeous color by Chanel Rouge Coco from my mother for the day. I’m still on the hunt for my own perfect everyday shade, so if you have a favorite that you love wearing daily, leave a comment below to help me out!IMG_7191-1-cb copy

 

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Thanks for reading, and Have a Wesley Day!

xoxo

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Tuesday Ten: St. Patrick’s Day

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day, everyone! With spring (almost) in full swing, I took the liberty to scout out some of the freshest picks and sweetest deals for your spring wardrobe’s delight. Here are 10 items that I am currently obsessing over that are sure to bring your closet back to life.

1. JCrew Factory Anorak Jacket -Add a splash of color to those rainy spring days.

2. Jessica Simpson Ballet Flats -Y’ALL. These are my dream. I’ll tell anyone that my biggest regret was not becoming a ballerina, but now I have the chance. (Sort of)

3. LC Lauren Conrad Scalloped Flats (on sale!) -Scallops and springtime go together like Sundays and brunch.

4. Ann Taylor LOFT Eyelet Tee -Eyelet is a springtime staple, and this gorgeous Robin’s Egg blue will have you looking like you stepped straight out of Tiffany’s.

5. Kate Spade Water Bottle -The tulips aren’t the only ones who need hydrating!

6. JCrew Factory Tuxedo Shorts -A classic short to polish off your nautical look.

7 &8. Tobi Floral Separates: Crop Top and Skirt -Separates are everything this season. Pull off the trend with a little bit of sass and a lotta class.

9. Kate Spade Giant Polka Dot Tights (on sale!) -Add a little glitz and glamour on chilly days.

10. Forever 21 Pleated Floral Shorts (only $13.90!) -What a steal. These high-waisted shorts are ready to accompany you wherever your many vacations lead.

Have a Wesley Day, y’all!

xoxo

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