Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Bitter Sweet

Warning:  Being personal and putting everything on my blog is hard for me.  I suffer from a issue I call “British Reserve” it means we like to keep our emotions to ourselves & definitely do not know how to articulate them properly.  So I will probably be a ramble & write to much, thank you in advance if you can make it to the end.

Over the last year I have talked about my struggle with never having enough time for everyday life, my jewelry & my intention to live a life of purpose.  However, I have never really disclosed the whole work reality so here’s a little back story leading to a major change & new intentions.  

Seven years ago I was a little lost with life, college wasn’t for me, I was still working at the same job I started in High School.  I was a manager & feel some sort of accomplishment with being so young but I was also miserable.  The retails hours were awful, the PTO was ok, except all I wanted to do was go home to England & five days off wasn’t enough. Eventually I decided I was going to leave the company & go home to see friends in England for a little while.  As I planned my trip & looked for something else I picked up a part time job at another retail store for fun & extra money.  The intention was never to stay with the job long.

So I went to England & Italy, came back and randomly decided to quit my full time job without a new full time job in place.   I really enjoyed that summer & who wouldn’t? It felt amazing to only work part time & enjoy life; I took some jewelry classes; which evoked my passion for the arts, creativity & fashion again.  I had let go of my artistic dreams for to long & honestly feel like that’s why I was a little lost at the time.  I couldn’t get enough of my new hobby but unfortunately, the summer had to end & I found a 9-5 job in Corporate America.  It wasn’t creative, exciting or anything I was passionate about.  Yet it seemed to be the perfect schedule, I would have my weekends to myself, real PTO (5 weeks to be exact).  However, I decided to stay at the part time job for a little longer for extra money to buy a car.  The plan was six months.

Fast forward 6 ½ years later, I am still working both jobs & nothing major has changed in my life, not what I planned but that was my reality.   Some weeks over holidays I have worked 70 hrs plus worked on Stella Jewelry, tried to keep up with family & friends & sometimes taking classes.  I was trying to it ALL but wasn’t doing any of it well.  That’s not the person I want to be, I want to exceed expectations & create a life I enjoy not just work it away.

Yet I love my part time job so much, I have had many ups & downs, gained valuable work experience, made life long friends & it was honestly more than a job at the mall.  It’s not something I can explain unless you worked with us but there a bond & a connection with the brand, that you feel part of something bigger than working retail.  I love the brand, the products & their values as a company.  Unfortunately, I want my life to move forward & there are no opportunities available for me at this time to move forward with them.  

So for the last year I have been trying to define my purpose, it’s so hard because I don’t know what I enjoy or love anymore because I have spent six years working & not living.  I started to get in a fog again so this week I re read some past posts by Jess on Make Under my Life to hopefully see things cleared & make a plan.  I know Stella Jewelry is my passion right now & I want to create a company I am proud of, professionally that is my ultimate purpose & by creating the a job I love, I can’t help but believe I will learn to love & enjoy my personal life.

Monday I looked at myself with an outside perspective, emotionally & financially, scary intimidating stuff but worth it.  Ultimately I wish I could leave the comfort of the corporate pay check.  However I am scared I need the paycheck to move my jewelry forward.  So I had to make the emotional decision to leave my part time job.  This may seem so trivial to most & maybe it is but to me it is sooo bitter sweet.  I have formed a second family there; it seems like the end of an era in my life & although I am excited for the future personally I am sad I won’t be part of the brand I love so much. 

I will now be able to decdicate the appriopate time to my creativity, to friends, family & finding new hobbies I love.  I can't wait to see where I go from here & will be back tomorrow with my intentions for creating a REAL business out of Stella Jewelry.

Hope you will all follow me on my journey to a life of purpose that I will love!!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

How Exciting!

When I started making jewelry I never realized how exciting it would be to see people wearing & enjoying something I create.  It makes our little company so worth the time & effort.

This week I was pleasantly surprised to see my pieces featured in our local Street Style blog by David Verde.  I may have squealed in excitement when I saw the post :)

Alissa looks adorable, I love the flirty top with skinny jeans!!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Back to Work!

Ahh the weekend is over again & its Monday morning, unfortunately I am back at work after a weeks staycation! Hopefully Today won't be to rough me.  

  I spent most of the week just catching up on life after a busy May & putting a lot of effort into Stella Jewelry!  Then finished the weekend with Relay for Life, celebrating my friends officially becoming old 30 & of course fathers day!

While at Relay for Life we were lucky enough to hear Superbowl winner Mark Zerzlich speak about being a Cancer Survivor.  Originally his doctor told him he would not be able to play football again.  Mark vowed to not give upon his dream & refused to let cancer overtake his life.  Such a great story!  

The little cutie on the right talked me into some new arm candy! Seriously she is a little hustler for charity!  

Saturday night called for a lovely dinner at a local steakhouse to celebrate the ladies birthdays!  I opted for stuffed shrimp filled with crab, scallops, herbs & bacon.  They couldn't have been more delightful.  Then we hopped around a couple of local bars for some drinks & ended the evening at local favorite, Metro for a little dancing.

If you are ever in Roanoke & are looking for a fantastic Martini or Sushi  I always suggest Metro.  The restaurant is fun modern spot in our historic market area.

I am not a huge raw fish fan but seriously cannot get enough of their California Roll & their Crab Rangoon!  

For Fathers Day we took a quick day trip into the Blue Ridge Mountains to Floyd Va.  Famous for its hippy vibe, artisan galleries & music.  The town is very small, like literally one stop light small.  Yet is full of culture & amazing food.

When in Floyd, Natasha's for brunch is a must, the ingredient's are all local & fresh.  They have the BEST bacon I have ever had in America.  It is perfectly sweet & saltly & never crispy!  I hate crispy bacon!!  Instead of Coca Cola they have what is apparently "Real Cola", the gluten, caffeine & preservative free option.  I can't say it was bad, but it wasn't the refreshing soda I was hoping for. 

How cute are those chocolates?  Adorable!  My Dad loves the beer selection in Floyd, they have all kinds from all over world & let you create your own six pack!  Easiest Fathers Day gift ever :)

I hope everyone had a great weekend, spoiled their Dads rotten & remember fondly those Dads no longer with us!

I am linking up with the Join The Gossip for their Weekend Update Link up, so hop on over their & meet some new bloggers!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Innocent yet Sexy

I love the look of a backless dress, they are so innocent, yet so sexy! Definetely a look that would drive Christian Grey crazy!!
Its also kind of like a mullet, business in the front party in back!! Well maybe not quite!!


I love the trend of adding a necklace backwards to dress up the look. It definetly can take the dress from day to night. 
1 / 2

Luckily, a customer requested a custom piece to be worn with an evergreen low back dress.  I haven't seen the dress & she needed the piece to be in Charleston by Saturday so it was a little bit of challenge, an exciting challenge for me.

I wanted clean lines, a simple pendant that still made a statement.  I hope my client loves the look & I can't wait to see the pictures from her event. 

What do you think?  Would you wear this backwards? 

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

New Kicks

While in NYC a couple of weekends ago I noticed a brand of flip flops at Henri Bendal, Tkees.   I had never heard of them before but I was mesmerized by their fun colors & smooth leather. 
I couldn't just choose one pair & was a little hesitant to spend $50 one a brand I don't know because leather sandals/flip flops are pretty much all I wear in summer.  

  However ever since I left I have regretted not buying them & am contemplating which to order.  They are simple & the perfect pop of color to a summer wardrobe!  

Has anyone tried them?  Please tell me they are comfortable :) 

Their collections are inspired by beauty products with the basic colors listed as foundations & the patent leather as polishes.  They have even brought out a collection with Essie!  

 Matching your shoes to your nails, cute or too much?

Of course I want the blue, but I'm loving the green & pink too. 

Monday, June 11, 2012

Rewind 3 weeks!!

In case you are unaware I have a slight obsession with Maroon 5, its not a crazy obsession like a 12 year old has with Justin Beiber.  It's definitely more mature, the kind where you stalk Twitter for clues to their location before & after concerts.  

A few weekends ago I was on a mission to see my beloved men, specifically Adam Levine so we drove up to Baltimore for Preakness.  Literally everything frustrating that could happen, happened. From lost reservations, delayed transportation, missing half the concert, dead car batteries & 5 gallons of split milk, originally I couldn't wait for the weekend to be over.

Looking back even with all the issues the weekend was great.  We enjoyed sometime at the Shenandoah Vineyard, which if you are ever travelling on I-81 in Virginia, its worth a quick stop.  The view was gorgeous, the staff friendly & the wine delicious.

I really loved the walls coated in wine bottle labels from all over!  Such a great detail. 

On of my favorite spots in Baltimore is a 10 minute drive from the Inner Harbor to Canton.  Its a great entertainment area full of bars, restaurants & sweet stores.  Next time you are there visit Nacho Mama's.  They have incredible food, specifically the Quesadilla's.  I usually opt of the Gouda & Crab but their are at least 30 other amazing options.  In the summer there is nothing I love more than a refreshing Margarita & Nacho Mamas does margarita right.   

They come in a Hub Cap & are delicious. These are normally meant for sharing however Kristin clearly was hogging the whole thing :)

Then there was Adam! I mean how could he not make the weekend wonderful!!

Even with all the ups and downs great memories were made & I got to enjoy some of my favorite things!!  Have you had a vacation or weekend away that nothing seemed to go right with? 

Hope you all had a great weekend & Monday!

Friday, June 8, 2012

A Short Friday Fancies

Time to get back to blogging!  After a busy May I found little time to blog, I worked both jobs, lined up some exciting things for Stella Jewelry & travelled 3 out of the 4 weekends then planned a baby shower!  I really wanted to blog about my trip to Maryland where anything frustrating that could happen, happened, my relaxing weekend in New York & all that came in between but the month was just to draining on me.  I'm sorry for being MIA.

I honestly missed my little old blog so I am back with a weeks worth of posts ready to fill you in on my travels.  However, today I am finally getting back to Friday Fancies, the fashionista in me has missed making outfit posts.

Shorts ~ Friday Fancies

 I have never been much of a shorts girl, I tend to feel overly casual in them & let's be real summer in England didn't call for shorts often so they were never a wardrobe staple for me & always an after thought now im an adult.

However, while I was making my Jubilee Look this week I found the perfect pair of mint shorts I couldn’t resist using them & maybe buying them.  Seen as they are quite simple I added a blouse top to dress it up a bit & how perfect are these sunnies?  They are Toms so abviously fashion with a purpose is always fab.  Add some great sandals & bangles & im pretty much in love with the look.

What do you think?  Hope you all have a great weekend & come back next week so I can fill you in on life!!

Monday, June 4, 2012

England 4

As you know by the Royal Wedding the Monarchy know how to celebrate.  So it comes as no surprise that to celebrate 60 years on the throne we went all out for our Amazing Queen.  

Just to name a few of the events.

The Epsom races.

To the 1000 boat Flotilla on the Thames.

To a MAJOR concert which included Sir Elton John, Sir Paul McCartney, Robbie Williams & many more. 

how fab is Macca's Guitar?

& of course the country came out in the 1000's to celebrate with the Royals.  I bet the energy in front of the Palace was amazing!


Those not in London as usual took the party to the streets! Nothing like a street party in England with some cheeky masks & drinks. 

How gorgeous do Prince William & the Duchess look on their way to the Crowning this morning? 

Had I been home show my patriotism I probably would have avoided the hustle in London & opted for a picnic or street party.

Jubilee Weekend

For my outfit seen as Queen Elizabeth was crowned in 1952 I took inspiration from the 50's for a fun look.  I am in love with the Topshop high waist shorts & silk top.  Adding a little edge & a modern twist I choose some McQueen flats & had to add some patriotic nail art!