November 15, 2019

ELEGANTEES JOANNA DRESS


Friends, I am back from a very long hiatus here to celebrate something very exciting!!!

Today is the LAUNCH DAY of a new Elegantees dress I designed for the Holidays! The Joanna Dress!

If you were following me a year ago, you probably remember that I had the incredible opportunity to design an entire Holiday collection for Elegantees last year. It was my design debut and a dream come true. I learned so much about the design process and I had so much fun! Thank you for all of your support during such an exciting time!

And so when Katie, founder of Elegantees, asked me to design another piece this year, it was a no-brainer. Of course! I knew instantly that I wanted to create a beautiful dress that would be versatile for everyday wear and Holiday soirées. And so the Joanna Dress came to life!

To give you a quick refresher about why I LOVE Elegantees so much...
Elegantees is near and dear to my heart because they not only create beautiful pieces of clothing, but their mission is so incredible! They partner with Our Daughters International, an organization working to rescue girls from the horrors of sex trafficking in Nepal. They not only save them, but also give these girls hope for a new life through counseling. Elegantees steps in by providing a hand up to these girls by giving them a job as seamstresses and pay them a fair wage. Also, the profits from each item you buy will help fund more rescue operations and bring hope to thousands of girls!

I hope you will consider supporting Elegantees' work by purchasing the Joanna Dress and any other items from the Elegantees shop! Plus, you can get 15% OFF your order with code GRACEINSTYLE!

The Joanna Dress went through a couple iterations before I felt it was perfect. From the start, I knew I wanted something a little more "grown up" from some of the more playful designs from my last collection. I also knew I wanted some kind of wrap design. And I'm so happy how the dress turned out! I'm obsessed with the beautiful tulip hemline, the draping of the wrap skirt and the bow-tie wrap details. Also, the slight puff of the shoulders adds more charm to the look.

The dress is available in 2 gorgeous colors: Burgundy and Teal Ocean!

For this post, I styled the dress three ways to give you an idea of how I imagine others styling it and how you can add this dress to your everyday and special occasion wardrobe.

STYLED FOR WORK: Pair the dress with a pair of leggings or opaque tights for a more conservative look for work. I am wearing black booties, but you can also wear pumps, flats, or knee boots for the work place setting. Warm up with your favorite peacoat or winter jacket, and you're good to go! Dresses are my favorite work wear because I don't have to stress about pairing a top and bottom when I'm running late or too tired.




STYLED FOR THE WEEKEND/CHURCH: Want to take the dress for a spin for a casual outing? You can also wear tights or leggings for these occasions, but you don't have to if the weather isn't freezing or if you want to wear your knee-high boots. You can even wear it with over-the-knee boots as well. I paired mine with my favorite ankle booties and a teddy coat.





STYLED FOR A HOLIDAY PARTY: I actually designed this dress with Holiday events and parties in mind. This dress can be worn for Thanksgiving because the fabric definitely has stretch to make room for a food baby and is comfortable enough to wear during your food coma nap. It would also be a perfect Holiday party dress and is simple to dress up with some statement jewelry, heels and a cute clutch!




I really hope you love this dress as much as I do! Let me know in the comments below! And don't forget to use code GRACEINSTYLE to get 15% off your orders :)

PHOTOGRAPHY BY: Ayaka Sano

June 1, 2019

DAYSPRING x STUDIO 71 DEVOTIONAL PLANNER


Every morning, I start my day by checking my to-do list while I brew a cup of coffee. Then, I'll take my cup of coffee and my Bible to my living room couch and read my daily devotional. If I feel led, I'll also spend some time journaling thoughts. I never feel ready for the day until I've done this routine.

Is anyone else as obsessed with their lists and routines?

Anyway, I was really excited when DaySpring reached out to me about their new Devotional Planner! It's the perfect tool to get my life organized and get my devotional time in all-in-one place!

This 18-month planner is filled with beautiful artwork by Studio71 artists and with encouraging verses to get you through each day. There are two different cover designs for this planner. I love the simplicity of the "Be Still" cover design as it's an important and necessary reminder for me to do just that. The other design is a beautiful floral design. Which would you choose?

I especially love all the thoughtful details that they included in the planners. There is both a monthly calendar and a weekly agenda list for the big and little details of your life. I also love that it includes sections for goals, notes, to do, gratitude and hope.

If you pre-order before the official launch of the planners on June 3rd, you'll also get a free goodie bag!








April 14, 2019

I HEART SPRING


Love is in the air!

Nope, not a cheeky reference to my love life. But my heart is bursting at the thought of dining al fresco, lounging on rooftops to soak up the sun and the thought of starting my garden soon. It's always fun to see Chicago burst with activity as its residents emerge from hibernation.

In anticipation of Spring, I prepped blog photos before vacation. (I know, who am I? I was very proud of myself!) But that meant waltzing around the city in bare legs and sandals in 30 degree weather. I got many crazy looks and stares from strangers, but Ashlee and I were still able to capture Springtime vibes with these photos!

I'm definitely taking this look for a spin for a night out. Oh, and the best part, the bodysuit and heart-print wrap skirt are only $15 each!!

What are you most looking forward to this Spring?







Photography: Ashlee O'Neil

SHOP MY LOOK:
Bodysuit: c/o SheIn
Skirt: c/o SheIn
Heels: Ann Taylor (old) {Similar | Similar}
Headband: Anthropologie (old) {Similar | Similar}
Earrings: BaubleBar {Similar | Similar}

March 30, 2019

OVER THE RAINBOW


Lately, the weather has been slowly but surely warming up and rain has been falling more and more. It feels like we've been waiting for this for a long time after this brutal frozen Winter. I've been looking forward to these Spring showers to nurture the Spring flowers along with the shining sun. While it's not always fun to drive or walk in the rain (especially if your umbrellas like to go inside-out like mine), I do look forward to the rainbows that adorn the sky afterwards.

The rainbow has long been a symbol of promise since the time of Noah's ark. For me, it is a symbol of God's goodness and grace. As a Christian, I know that for the duration of my life here on earth, I will continue to face the storms of life. The storms in my life are often much like those Winter storms that seem to destroy life as the trees become bare and the flowers and grass wilt from the cold. They tend to bring on the feeling of despair and sometimes loss.

But with Spring, comes the renewal of life. As the rain falls and quenches the thirst of the dry earth, the hope of goodness and beauty springs as the trees bud and the flowers break from the ground and the grass turns green again. Similarly, I can trust that despite the deepest and darkest valleys of life, God is always with me.

As Psalm 23 says, God is always with us. He has gone before us, He stands beside us and guards us from behind. And I know that I can trust Him to provide me with whatever I need to weather the storms. There will eventually be peace, comfort and rest.

I don't need to wish upon a star to wake up where clouds are far behind me or where trouble melts like lemon drops. I know that somewhere over the rainbow exists for you and me. We just have to place our trust in Jesus and that's where we will be found.








PHOTOGRAPHY: Ashlee O'Neil

SHOP MY LOOK:
Dress: c/o SheIn (Use code Q1Graceinstyle15 to get 15% OFF before March 31st! After April 1st, use code Q2Graceinstyle15 to get 15% OFF!) 
Jacket: Forever 21 (old) {Similar | Similar}
Heels: Old Navy
Bag: 31Bits
Rings: 31Bits | 31Bits

January 30, 2019

BRIGHT DAYS AHEAD


Oh, Chiberia! It is in full swing today. I hope many Chicagoans and others in the Midwest dealing with this misery were able to stay indoors and avoid the negative 50 with wind chill weather! If not, I am sending prayers your way for safety!

The winter months overall can be dreary and depressing. It may be the shorter days, the blistering cold, or maybe it's the black "snow" on the roads and sidewalks.

Quick story - I've been showered head-to-toe with this black "snow" in college by a bus speeding past me as I was walking back to my dorm after going on a grocery run. I tried to tell myself that it had to have some exfoliating properties or possibly something good for my hair. But I burst out in tears on that sidewalk, drenched in who-knows-what, carrying heavy bags of groceries, and already super stressed with exam season in that moment. - True story! I laugh now looking back at that moment, but I was a ball of stress in the moment and not joy-filled about the situation.

Because of all of the above, it's easy to overlook reasons to choose joy during this season.

But I often find a fun outfit puts a smile on my face. It's also a physical reminder and act of choosing to put on joy!

So instead of pulling my usual jeans and comfy but joy-less sweater on my days off, I've been more intentional about putting together fun looks! It's definitely made my days brighter and hopefully brings joy and brightness to others around me.

Also fun, my entire look is under $100! While I usually don't wear highlighter yellow, I love how all the colors play together. As always, I choose one piece as the centerpiece and choose every other piece around that one piece. For this look, the centerpiece is a colorful pleated skirt and I decided to pull out the yellow with a cute OTS yellow top. And to stay warm, I chose this pretty coat. I'm obsessed with the bow and fur details!

Here's to brighter days ahead!








PHOTOGRAPHER: Ashlee O'Neil

SHOP MY LOOK:
Top: c/o SheIn (Use code Q1graceinstyle15 to get 15% OFF)
Skirt: c/o SheIn (Use code Q1graceinstyle15to get 15% OFF)
Coat: c/o SheIn (Use code Q1graceinstyle15to get 15% OFF)
Purse: SheIn (Use code Q1graceinstyle15to get 15% OFF)
Heels: Seychelles (OLD) {Similar | Similar}

December 25, 2018

CHRISTMAS HOPE


Christmas is here! And this is the first year in many years that I get time for rest and time with family for Christmas. Honestly, it's the best gift I could ever receive since this time of year is often so crazy with busyness and I don't get to savor the spirit & joy of the season.

I know that this season is not the most joyous time for everyone. There is pain and hardship surrounding me. For the past two Christmases, I spent 80 hour weeks in the pediatric intensive care unit taking care of the sickest patients in the hospital. I remember trying my best to grab for any piece of joy and hope to share with the families and patients despite the exhaustion & stress of 30 hour calls. Honestly, it was really difficult and I sometimes felt like hope was so far out of reach. I can't even put myself in the shoes of the families living through the hills and valleys of the news we would deliver them at different moments of each day. 

One lesson I learned throughout residency was that in order to overcome the sadness and feeling of hopelessness that could've so easily taken hold of me, I had to wake up each day with the decision to choose joy. And my joy is always found in the hope that I have in God.

I am so thankful for the greatest gift of Hope that was given to each of us in the form of Jesus Christ on Christmas day. Through my faith in Jesus, I know that I am loved always despite my failings and mistakes. It doesn't mean that life will be easy and perfect, but I know that even when life seems hopeless, there is always hope when I look to Christ. 

So my plan is to find moments of stillness this season to remind myself of this sweet hope. One place I find stillness is during my quiet times in the Word. Another place is in another good book found on the shelves of a cute bookstore. Where do you find your moments of stillness?

Wishing you a truly joy-filled Christmas! You are so loved & I am so thankful for you!








SHOP MY LOOK:
Jumpsuit: c/o SheIn (Use code Q1graceinstyle15 to get 15% OFF)
Top: c/o SheIn (Use code Q1graceinstyle15to get 15% OFF)
Coat: c/o SheIn (Use codeQ1graceinstyle15 to get 15% OFF)
Headband: Anthropologie {Similar}
Earrings: BaubleBar {Similar | Similar}
Key necklace: The Giving Keys

PS. If you missed the video from yesterday's post, my sister and I created a Christmas mashup & recorded it for your viewing pleasure! Enjoy!

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