Wednesday, May 24, 2017

My Favorite Finds From The Nordstrom 1/2 Yearly Sale

It's your lucky day! Two new posts from me and one which includes a sale from my favorite online retailer. Talk about a win! I spent this morning sifting through Nordstrom's site to curate my own list of favorites from their Half Yearly Sale. Select items on the site are 40% off through June 4th which gives you a head start on your memorial day shopping. 

This is just a glimpse of all the on sale pieces being offered now through the sale so be sure to start shopping before things start selling out. 

Dorm Room Design with Not Just Dorms

Being at home for the past few weeks has me seriously questioning my age. Getting into my summer routine and going back to some of my favorite places makes it almost feel as though I could be back in high school again. In some ways I wish that were the case considering doing college again comes with a little less pressure than starting a job and becoming an “adult” in the real world. A recent, very specific reason I would love to be a college freshman again? Decorating a dorm room. Fortunately I have an apartment to tackle when it comes to decorating which seems to be a bigger undertaking than I originally anticipated making me almost (keyword: almost) wish I were back in the small space of a dorm room. Recently I had the opportunity to go to the showroom of a really cute dorm (and home/apartment, my luck!) design showroom and relive those dorm decorating days. The best part was that Nell got to join me. If you’ve been around PIYS for a while then you’d know that Nell and I lived together both freshman year and senior year so there was something kind of nostalgic about going together. When we went to Furman 4 years ago dorm decorating was definitely a big deal at state schools but everyone at Furman was a bit shocked by how much we decorated our room. We constantly had people asking if we had planned to coordinate it and saying that it looked like something straight out of Southern Living. In all honesty we didn’t really coordinate our dorm but happened to have styles and color schemes in mind that complemented one another. Had we known about Not Just Dorms when we went to school I could definitely see us meeting up to design our own dorm room there. And had that been the case I think there would have been a few more dropped jaws as classmates foreign to the idea of headboards and matching bedding when it came to a dorm walked into our room.

While the Not Just Dorms showroom happens to be relatively close to my house they ship their products all over the country to help you decorate any space you may be designing. For you girls headed off to college in the fall it serves as a one stop shop for everything you could possibly need to make your cinder block cell into a cozy home away from home. From offering products that don’t damage the walls (command strips WILL be your best friend) and ample items that help to keep your things stored and mess free, Not Just Dorms allows you to focus on the fun stuff like picking your color scheme, fabrics, and pillows!

Getting to play with the products in person had me that much more impressed with the versatility of the items while being super practical for a dorm room, especially on move in day. We were super impressed by the Bedside Bookcase which looked a lot sturdier (and cuter) than the ones we used all 4 years from Target that our dads quickly volunteered to build on the porch outside of our room to get out of our way on move in day. After walking up to them we were told just how awesome their features were. They weigh less than 4 pounds and don’t require any tools to assemble. Yep, I questioned that too but left super impressed by how thoughtfully they were designed. Honestly, that’s how I felt about all of Not Just Dorm’s products. Every piece was thought through when it came to weight, durability, and of course style to make it an affordable and functional purchase to use in your dorm room and beyond.

I am super excited to include some of Not Just Dorm’s items to decorate my new apartment in the coming months. I already decided on this cute headboard as the sleek design and white color will serve as the perfect backdrop for my pillow obsession. Their blackout curtains are definitely at the top of my wishlist as the natural light in my room is wonderful but there is definitely a time and place for everything. And if I were headed back to school the one thing I can’t recommend enough would be a bed skirt. Don’t waste all of the wonderful storage space under your ridiculously tall bed and instead take my word on that being a must have. Not Just Dorm’s are super easy to install as they sell the tension rods that work best for their design and allow you to secure it beneath your bed while still being able to move the fabric around to access all those essentials you may be storing under your bed.

I can’t wait to share more photos of their products in my own space but would love to know which color combinations you would include if you were decorating your space with Not Just Dorms.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Pink Ruffle Hem Tee & Tassel Clutch

Since graduation I really think I've started to grow up a bit. Instead of always choosing to wear athletic clothes when running errands and doing things at home I've actually chosen to wear cute clothes. This is a major win if you ask my mom since she is always complaining that I have to many cute clothes but instead always look like I just finished a workout. This isn't an all the time thing since I still find myself reaching for college t-shirts (at what point am I too old for my sorority shirts? probably soon...) and comfy shorts on occasion. I think this shift to cuter clothes has come since student teaching. When teaching this past semester I had to gravitate towards more professional clothes which left some of my cute spring and summer tops hanging in my closet with little hope of being worn. Fortunately, I've started to discover some pieces that will be perfect to transition into my teaching wardrobe come August without looking to teacher-esque now thanks to fun accessories! 

Let's start with this  top from H&M. It's under $20, is the cutest pale pink color, and has a peplum hem. You can bet it took me no time at all to decide that I needed to try this on and once I did I was sold. It is essentially an upgrade of my KD t-shirts as it is equally as comfortable but definitely raises the bar in the cuteness department. I've already worn it a number of times with jean shorts but love how with a pair of white jeans this simple tee can look a bit more dressed up. I lived in the brown sandals you see here last summer and that trend is already taking shape this summer as well although I am thinking they are going to need a replacement before too long thanks to how much wear they have been getting. 

Now onto my favorite part about this outfit, the  tassel clutch. Woven bags have had a strong presence in the accessory realm for a while now and I definitely think that with fun additions like tassels they appeal to a variety of age ranges. The brown leather along the top makes it perfect with other tan accessories and the pops of colors offered by each tassel makes it that much more playful. The interior of this clutch is lined and I was shocked as to just how much I could fit into it. When I do have to go back to more professional teacher-esque clothes I think I'm going to tuck this clutch into one of my bags to hold various things just to make work a little bit more fun! 

top // jeans // sandals // tassel clutch (c/o) // watch (c/o) // bracelets ( 1 & 2 ) // rose gold bracelet 

Hopefully you are all coming to terms with just how much a tassel clutch like this one can add to your wardrobe! And while you are all pondering that purchase I wanted to take a minute to introduce you to one of the coolest new online shops,  Dear Keaton. With home decor, resort wear, accessories, and more it is the most wonderful collection of curated finds that would have me equally as excited to decorate for a summer soiree as dress for one (and that's saying something). While I am pretty much drawn to everything on the site I decided to include some of my favorites with y'all instead of solely add them to my cart and naturally I had to include my tassel clutch! 

If you're in an extra shoppy mood with the holiday weekend approaching and beach trips sounding more and more inviting I included some of my other favorite H&M items for you to peruse as well. 

Monday, May 22, 2017

Step Into My Week

It has been a little while since I last updated y'all on my life through a Step Into My Week post. Whenever I am at home I don't feel like I've ever really done that much which makes these posts a bit less entertaining. However, I've been trying to make the most of the time I am home (I head back to school in about a week and a half) and have been able to do some pretty fun things.

One of my favorite things to do in high school to relieve stress was to bake. I baked some in college but with a shared kitchen it made things a little tricky and come time to clean up I really missed having a dishwasher. So, when I am at home I like to try out some of the recipes I've found and this most recent recipe did not disappoint. Meet the most delicious browned butter blondies. I follow Elisabeth and Butter on instagram and after starting her own blog recently to share her recipes I knew I had to give them a try. I am so glad that I did because these blondies were delicious and are something I know I am going to have to make again soon. 

A lot of my time since being home has been spent car shopping. For graduation my parents wanted to get me a new car since the one I received when I was 16 (Hyundai Santa Fe) has acquired a number of miles since I've been at school. Ever since having to get towed on my way to student teach this semester (read about that here) they wanted me to have something newer and reliable so that I wouldn't have to worry about it. My mom will be taking my old car so fortunately I don't feel like I've completely betrayed it. After lots of looking and hours at the dealership I ended up with a 2017 Toyota RAV4! So far I really love it and am so excited to finally be able to play music from my phone in the car. I decided on white (which I love) with black leather interior which wasn't my first choice but I didn't love that all of the other interiors were two toned. So far I really like it and I am actually looking forward to my 8 hour drive back to school  since it'll be in my new car! 

 Since being home I've also had the chance to do a number of blog related things. The first of those was getting to see the show room of a brand I an't wait to introduce y'all to on Wednesday! I love collaborating with brands that I think y'all will love and this one is no different and it's also really fun that it is local to where I live despite them shipping wherever. The second blog related experience I had was for a post y'all will be seeing at the beginning of June. The best part of this one was that I got to bring my dad along. My dad is an avid reader of Prep In Your Step (hey dad!) so it was so much fun to be able to include him in a collaboration for an upcoming post. While I don't want to give *too* much away we will just leave it at the fact that it was a wild ride. 

 Aside from that I've been keeping myself busy with emailing and brainstorming about fun content ideas I want to bring to PIYS. It is so nice to have a chunk of time to get in a schedule that almost entirely revolves around blogging. After being on my computer so much this past week it was nice to unplug this past weekend though at the beach. We were able to get a good boat ride in on Saturday morning before the rain came which was good but set us up for a lazy Saturday afternoon reading and napping. We will be headed back to the beach this weekend for Memorial Day and my fingers are crossed that the weather will be better! 

This week I'll be painting a desk I found on craigslist for my apartment, blogging, and starting to work on photos and ideas for a post featuring my favorite place. Plenty to keep me busy but I'd also love to hear any ideas of blog posts or videos you'd like to see from me this summer! 

In the meantime be sure to check out my posts from the past week especially the DIY I did.
DIY Layered Tassel Earrings (these are super inexpensive and the perfect summer accessory)

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Buddy Love Split Back Off The Shoulder Top

While blue and white has definitely been taking over my closet as of late I can't help but love throwing on bright colors as the temperature continues to rise. When packing up for school to come home this month I found myself with one too many hangup bags worth of clothes with my typical excuse that I wouldn't know what I'd want to wear once I arrived back. In reality, I couldn't make a decision when it came to deciding which tops I'd want to bring home. Consequently it seems like over half of the clothes hanging in my closet currently have an off the shoulder silhouette and a solid fourth of them are blue and white. This pop of pink is a welcome change and so easy to throw on with a pair of jean shorts. I'd like to think had I actually narrowed down my hang up clothes it would have been a winner either way. 

I've never been one to shy away from a print and this top is no exception. It is from the brand Buddy Love Clothing (last seen here with my palm print romper) a new favorite of mine that you will be seeing a lot more of this summer! I just adore the fun prints on their pieces and how each item makes its own statement. Jean shorts are a no brainer for me in the spring and summer so having tops to pair with them that won't be unbearable in the heat are a must! I also love that this top can easily be transitioned from day to night by throwing on white jeans and wedges to dress it up a bit. 

top // shorts // cross body (similar) // bracelets ( 1 & 2 )

I hope y'all have had a relaxing weekend! 

Friday, May 19, 2017

DIY Layered Tassel Earrings

Who knew that graduation “regalia” as they so officially called it was so in style with all of the tassels. From your cap to your cords you’d think that the cap and gown designers were avid readers of People StyleWatch. All jokes aside I am so glad that the tassel trend that was in full force last summer hasn’t ended just yet. I am all about the fun embellishments they add and find myself drawn to anything they are on! It is only fitting that all of the DIY style posts I’ve done on the blog involve tassels and pom poms so as you’ve probably gathered from the title this post is no different!

Junior year was the first year I ventured to try any earrings aside from studs. Now I like to mix in hoops and the occasional statement earring. I have really tiny earlobes and a relatively small head (I like to think it is in proportion to my body so if you disagree no need to let me know). This makes me pretty cautious when it comes to trying different earring styles. I have seen layered tassel earrings everywhere and have wanted to give them a try but with either a hefty price tag or my uncertainty with their size I haven’t tested them out just yet. That’s when I figured I’d give it a go making my own. I’ve made tassels before for other products and figured it wouldn’t be too challenging for this project either. The hardest part came with determining the size and since I’ve figured it out for you maybe you’ll feel more comfortable giving it a go making your own layered tassel earrings.

what you’ll need

Embroidery Thread (you’ll need 3 colors for each earring so 6 thread packs for a set although I found it easier to stock up on some white thread to use to thread the earrings together)
Earring Hooks (choose these based on your own preference, Hobby Lobby had tons of different options)

how to make the tassel

I found that making each tassel 1.5  inches was the key to making the earring substantial enough without being overwhelming. To make the tassel you’ll need to gather your thread, ruler, and scissors. These earrings are just as cute monochrome as they are ombre but since the ombre ones take a bit more thought I figured I would show you hot to make those since you can easily adjust when using a singular color.

  1. Take thread color of your choice and cut off about 8 inches of thread. You will use this to secure the tassel so don’t throw it away!
  2. Using your middle three fingers begin to wrap the thread around your fingers pulling it snug.
3.Continue wrapping until all the string has been used.
4. Take extra string and tie tightly around the top of the tassel.
5. Trim any loops at the bottom of the thread and check to see that the length is relatively even.
6. Repeat until all tassels are complete.
7. Take your ruler and measure each tassel to 1.5'' and cut off excess. This is where a good pair of scissors comes in handy!

how to put the tassels together 

1. Go ahead and thread your needle with some thread. I bought extra white and found that this made it really easy to use to connect them. Be sure to knot the end of the thread so that it can hold the tassels together.
2. Place the tassels in the order you want them to be on the earring.
3. For the top two tassels spread apart the tassel so that the tassels can sit tight together.
4. Starting in the middle of the bottom tassel pull needle through. Do the same thing for the next two tassels and be sure to pull them tight. Adjust the tassels to appear how you’d like them to look.
5. Leave the needle and thread through the top of the first tassel.

how to make them into an earring 

This is where your process may differ a little from mine since you should definitely get earring hooks that work best for your ears! I tried hoop and stud style and found that hoop ones are definitely easier to work with. For the hoop style I used you can follow these directions!

1. Take the needle and thread it trough one side of the tassel.
2. Without pulling too tight make a loose loop by threading the needle through the other side of the tassel.
3. Connect your earring base to that loop and then pull it to secure.
4. Continue to make loops around the earring by taking needle and thread through earring base to keep secure.
5. On one side of the earring make a know by threading the needle through a few strands at the base of the tassel. Pull the thread through the loop and then thread the needle through the other side of the tassel to trim excess string.

I went ahead and included a video of me making the tassels in case my explanation of the process didn't make sense! 

Well there you have it! The cutest layered tassel earrings that are inexpensive and easy to make for yourself! I’d love to see what you come up with following these instructions so definitely send a picture my way if you decide to make them! You’ll certainly be seeing these in upcoming blog posts. If you’re looking for other fun summer DIYs then feel free to look through some of the other items I’ve made here. And if you like the idea but aren’t ready to make your own then there are some similar earrings for $9 here and I’ve left a good reminder to yourself below in case you want to pin the instructions to try out later!

other fun DIY posts I've done

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Bow Sleeve Tank & Blue and White Color Crush

For the past two weeks I have been living in white jeans. There is something about the crispness of a pair of white jeans that makes them so easy to pair with any top and automatically look put together and chic for summer. I definitely am guilty of bringing home too many clothes just for the month of May at home but summer clothes may just be my favorite. With so many off the shoulder tops and flowy silhouettes I really can’t complain and I am definitely for a good pop of color. While I love all the bright pieces in my closet I’ve noticed a slight expansion in one area of my color coordinated closet… the blues. This I’m sure does not serve as groundbreaking news to any of you but instead a little warning that a number of the outfits you’ll be seeing this summer will be featuring my favorite color. If you’ve been around a while then you are probably well aware of the blue and white obsession I’ve had for the past four years (have you seen my last apartment bedroom?) and it seems that retailers aren’t wanting me to stray with the release of even more blue and white pieces as of late.

Switching up the shades of blue has become my version of variety lately and this navy top may just be one of my favorite finds. I know a number of people think J.Crew has been going downhill but I personally love all of the pieces they are coming out with and my cart on their site is constantly filled with so many pieces and a hefty price tag. When I noticed the bow sleeves and peplum style of this tank I knew it would be perfect paired with white jeans in the coming months. I first wore this combination to dinner with my family when they came in town for graduation with a pair of wedges it was so easy to dress up!

Bow tank // white jeans // sandals // watch (c/o) // bracelets ( 1 & 2 ) // rose gold bracelet

Since I couldn’t help but look at all of the cute new blue and white pieces from my favorite retailers I thought I’d do everyone a favor (that may be a stretch) and share my favorite with y’all! I’ve included links to all of the products beneath the image so if you find something you have to have then feel free to click on over to it! I’ve been working to come up with a way for y’all to be able to click directly on the product image to be taken to the item but every time I do that the formatting gets funky so hopefully this works for now!

I'd love to hear which pieces are your favorite! 

Blog Design by Get Polished