Tag: fashion

MY VACATION IN JORDAN….and how I embraced their culture!!

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My vacation in Jordan was a trip of a lifetime to say the least.   My friends live in Amman, Jordan and I was fortunate enough to visit them.   I never in a million years would have thought I would travel to the Middle East, but I am so thankful I am open to new experiences.  My friend, Elissa put together a remarkable itinerary and each day was better than the next and it couldn’t have been more perfect.   My first thoughts were… what do I wear?  Can I wear shorts?  Do I have to wear long dresses?  Do I have to cover my head like they do?  What is allowed and what isn’t?  Thank goodness Elissa was there to guide me and tell me when I could wear shorts and when I should wear pants.  If we were going to be in town amongst the locals I was to cover up as much as possible, no shorts or sleeveless tops.   If we were going to a tourist site, then it was okay to wear shorts but still obviously not too short.  Easy enough!

My first day in Amman was a fun packed day of sightseeing.  We went to The Citadel, the highest point of the city to see The Temple of Hercules and admire the stunning views of the city.   We then went to the Souk (the local market) and wandered through the town before stopping for lunch at a local spot, which was delicious!

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The next day we went to Mount Nebo, where Moses saw The Promised Land.  The views were breathtaking and left me speechless.   After this spiritual experience we drove down the valley to The Dead Sea!!  This exceeded my expectations.   We bought a day pass and swam in the pool and spent a much needed day of relaxation.   Towards the end of our day we made our way down to the Sea and when I say down, I mean down!  The Dead Sea is the lowest point on earth!!  You can’t swim in the Dead Sea, but you can float!  There is a high concentration of dissolved mineral salts in the water and since our body weight is less dense your body automatically floats.   We covered ourselves in mud from the sea, sat in the sun for 10 minutes till we were dry and then floated in the sea.  The mud from the sea is high in minerals, such as sodium, chloride, magnesium, potassium, iron, and calcium, so it nourishes the skin leaving it remarkably silky soft!!!  Better than any spa day that you pay for here!

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Next on the itinerary was Jerash to see the Roman ruins.  This is where I bought an Arabic scarf and had one of the locals wrap my head Bedouin style to protect me from the blazing sun.  It really did keep me cool.  Followed by Petra, an ancient city carved from stone and one of the new Seven Wonders of the World.  This is where my dream came true and I rode a camel! I rode three to be exact over the next few days.  It was such a calming and thrilling experience.  Then we were off to Wadi Rum to camp in the desert.  This was such a spiritual experience and by far my favorite.   Star Wars and the new Aladdin movie were filmed in Wadi Rum and I truly felt like I was in a movie while we were there.

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My trip was coming to an end and what better way to close out my whirl wind of a vacation than swimming in the Red Sea in Aqaba!

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I know how truly fortunate I am to have experienced all of these amazing things.  I learned a lot about their culture and I really embraced it.  However, my first day in Amman was the only time I felt people were staring at me.  My dress was very long and shapeless, and I felt like I was wearing a tent so the fashionista in me tweaked it by pulling it up and tying it in a knot.   I thought it looked great, but Elissa was quick to point out the looks I was receiving.  I didn’t understand why till she told me it was because my leg was showing.  My initial reaction was, it’s just my lower leg!  It’s barely anything!  I then noticed that the women were sending me disapproving looks.   I didn’t understand it, I wasn’t grasping what the big deal was but then quickly realized I didn’t need to understand it I only needed to respect it.  From that day forward I felt completely comfortable and safe everywhere we went.

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This trip made me realize how fortunate we are that we live in a country that allows us to dress freely and be our own individuals.   We have so much freedom and I really took that for granted but not anymore!  We live in completely different worlds and I am not sure how well I would do living in a country that forced me to dress a certain way and act a certain way.   I did however love learning about their customs, culture and traditions.  I loved every minute of my experiences while I was there and I feel like I really grew as a person.  I was open to everything around me which really enhanced my experiences while I was there.

I truly believe they are happy with their culture and their religion is extremely important to them.  They probably don’t understand our western ways and how we dress but if we respect each other and learn from each other then this is all that really matters.

Melissa Gauvreau – Styled by M

Stay fabulous!

 

FALL FASHION….who else is excited??

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Summer ’19 you have been amazing.  We had almost perfect weather and I have soaked up as much sun and spent as much time outdoors as possible.  Sad to say, it is quickly coming to an end though.  Kids are going back to school soon.  The days are becoming shorter.  The nights are a bit cooler.   It’s okay though because it’s time to get excited for my favorite time of year, fall!  I am not talking pumpkin lattes people; I am talking about boots and sweaters!! Time to get excited for fall fashion!  Time to find out what is coming in hot this season!

Cinched suits.

Belts are a must to pull off this fashion trend.   Throw on a blazer, cinch it with a belt and voila!  I am excited to try this look with my new Steve Madden belt I bought on sale at Simons.

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All satin everything.

As pretty as satin is, not everyone can wear this material.  It is very clingy and shows every curve.  That won’t stop me from wearing a sexy satin dress or skirt though.  I just need to find the right one that suits me.   Adding this to my fall must haves for sure!

 

50 shades of purple.

Good thing most people can wear purple as it is everywhere this season.  Time to get your purple on.

 

Micro bags. 

Micro bags may be tiny, but they are here in a big way.   Can my phone even fit in there?

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Stick a feather in it.

Feathers are making an appearance everywhere, even boots and shoes.   This trend might not be for everyone, but it is definitely here!

 

Statement hats. 

Hats are one of my favorite accessories.  I think it’s time to step my hat game up though and make a statement.

 

Long coats.

The longer your hem on your coat this fall, the better!

 

Asymmetric neckline.

This neckline is particularly nice for anyone who doesn’t enjoy strapless.   The one cold shoulder look is very classy and stylish.

 

Dripping in gold.

Wearing gold is bold and confident.  It’s not just for the Grammy’s.  It’s time to shine this season!

 

Capes.

Not all heroes wear capes but fall fashionistas sure do.

 

Power shoulder!

80’s are back in a powerful way.  I wasn’t a fan then and I am not a fan now but it is making a big come back whether I like it or not.

 

Square neckline.

I am loving this romantic renaissance look.

 

 

So there we have it.  Fall fashion 2019.   I am ready for it but first let’s enjoy the last bit of summer to the fullest.  Time is passing us by too quickly to wish fall upon us just yet.

Melissa Gauvreau – Styled by M

Stay fabulous!

MY NAME IS MELISSA…..and I am a Shopaholic.

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I love shopping, always have and always will.  When I am happy, I shop.  When I am sad, I shop.  When I am bored, I shop.  When I travel, I shop.  You get the point.  There is a rush I get when I am shopping and it’s something I prefer to do alone.  It is literally one of my favorite things in life.

In January I was in Nashville for a conference about goal setting and setting yourself up to have your best year ever.  One of my goals was to save money.  How was I going to do that?  By shopping less.  I don’t need anything.  I have enough clothes, shoes, bags and accessories to dress ten women and it’s all jammed into my tiny downtown condo.  So, it was there at the conference I told myself after Nashville I would not buy anything till June 1st.   This was early January so almost five months of no shopping!  Could I do this? There was no way I could start immediately because Nashville has so many cute neighborhoods with the most unique boutiques and I planned on visiting all of them.   So, I made sure I thoroughly enjoyed my last shopping hurrah.

In February I had my first temptation.   I wanted to get a new winter coat and the end of the season is the time to get one because they are on sale.   Then I remembered this whole not shopping kick I was on.  I started talking myself into it.  It’s not really shopping if it’s something I need.  It would be on sale, so I would be saving money!  Then to make matters worse I found one I loved.   It was in my shopping cart for two days and I was almost going to click buy and then realized if I did this, I would have not only failed but I would not even have lasted a month.  This was the coat…. I still feel sad looking at it.  What are the odds it will still be available in June?  shop11

I was tempted a few times online and really really wanted all of these.   I still really really want them!  Facebook ads are going to be the death of me!

I was even in Vegas in April and I did not buy anything but makeup and only because my eye shadow palette shattered on the plane.  I walked by H&H and almost died when I saw massive signs saying 70% off.  70% off?!?!  That is almost free, it wouldn’t really be shopping if it was free, would it?  I kept walking; I don’t know how I did but I kept walking.

Twice I met a client at Nordstrom to go shopping.   So there I was in the men’s section thinking I got this.  I am working, today is about my client not me.  While he was in the dressing room, I found myself with a pair of Champion cut off joggers in my hand looking for the price tag.  One might think I was safe because I was in the men’s section but I wear men’s sweats!  I was basically torturing myself.   So, I did what I had to do, I ran out of there!!  Ha, no I slowly walked back to the dressing room to wait for my client and kept thinking June can’t come fast enough.

Fast forward a few months, 132 days to be exact and I still have not bought anything, not one article of clothing.   There were times I didn’t think I would make it.  I can see the finish line, only 12 more days.  There is no stopping me now.  These past months have been uber challenging for me, but I am incredibly proud of myself.  So much so that I am going to reward myself with a shopping spree on June 2nd.  I will be in Vegas again and best believe my first stop will be the Outlets!!  Thinking about this makes my heart race and I get butterflies in my stomach.  If I am going to be addicted to anything, I am glad it is shopping and if my only real struggle is not buying anything for 5 months then I am beyond blessed.

Melissa Gauvreau – Styled by M

Stay fabulous!

 

DRESS LIKE YOU ARE GOING TO A PARTY…. let the party come to you!

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The clothes you wear set the tone for any occasion, so why not dress like you are going to a party or a special event all the time.  Well,  within reason of course if you are going to the gym then please dress accordingly, lol.   Research has shown that the clothes you wear change the way you think and make an impact on what is about to come your way.

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Dressing up every day like you are going to a party doesn’t exactly mean walking around in a cocktail dress on a Monday but you can certainly dress up more than usual.  Wear a sparkly, fancy necklace and some earrings and if there is a party after work, you will be ready to go!

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I remember someone once said to me,  why are you so dressed up?   We are not going to a fashion show!  My reply was,  girl my whole life is a fashion show!   This might sound a bit crazy but I even put on my rings when I go walk my dog.   A bit over the top?  I don’t think so,  you never know what is going to happen along the way or who you will meet.   When it comes to fashion and what you are wearing you should never settle for average.  I think fashion is a way of self expressing yourself so if you are walking around in jeans and a t-shirt what are you trying to say?

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That cocktail dress that you bought cost too much to wear once and sit in your closet.    Wear it the next time you go for dinner.  Watch how it boosts your mood and confidence!  When you take the time to put more effort into how you dress and how you look it sets your mind into thinking you are going to have a fun filled evening.   Who doesn’t want that?

Don’t get me wrong,  I LOVE my sweats as well!  I love being comfortable too when I am at home relaxing but don’t let yourself get TOO comfortable.   I hope I have inspired you just a little bit.   Let me know if I have!

Melissa Gauvreau – Styled by M

Stay fabulous!

SHOPPING….. my favorite sport and I am sharing some tips!

 

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I have been obsessed with shopping for clothes,  shoes, bags and accessories since I was nine years old.  I can easily say this has made me some what of a professional shopper or some might use the word shopaholic.   Either way I have learned some things along the way.  Whether you love shopping or dread it, I hope you find these tips helpful.

Shop with a list!

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If you are going shopping for something specific it’s important to have a list to help you stay on track and stay focused.  It’s too easy to get side tracked or overwhelmed once you are there.   Try and stick to the task at hand.   This will save you time and even money.

Set a budget!

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Trust me,  I hate this part but it’s so easy to over spend.  I always have a number in my head and remind myself that I will not spend more than that number!  When I see something that I don’t particularly need I ask myself,  how many times will I actually wear it?  Or WHERE will I wear it?   I hate wasting money as I am sure we all do so be realistic about your purchases.

Try everything on!

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I am the worst when it comes to trying stuff on but I have learned my lesson.  Too many times I would come home and try everything on and there was usually something that I wish I didn’t buy.   Always make sure you ask what their exchange policy is and remember sale items are usually final sale.  Always try to wear something that is easy to slip on and off as this will make it easier for you in the change room.  If you are wearing a dress and are trying on shirts remember to grab a pair of pants off the rack as you will be bottom less in the change room and you might feel a bit silly with no pants on.  Once you have on your item, move around,  lift your arms and even sit to make sure it’s comfortable everywhere.  It’s a good idea to look at yourself from every angle to make sure it looks great from the back as well.  My rule of thumb is if I don’t love it,  I don’t buy it.

What will you wear with it?

If you don’t have anything to wear with the skirt you just tried on, what are the odds you will actually wear the skirt?  Too often we buy something with good intentions that you will find a shirt to go with it and it rarely happens.  Also,  what shoes will you wear with it?  So many times I have not purchased something because I did not have the shoes to go with the outfit.  I know,  I know,  I could just buy new shoes but I am following my list remember!! See how easy it is to get side tracked?

Don’t buy it just because it’s on sale!

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We see the sales rack and are normally drawn to it.  That is great… IF you need it.  Just because something was $50 and on sale for $20 doesn’t mean you will wear it.   We all like a great deal but is it really a deal if it sits in your closet?

A few other small things that could make your shopping experience more enjoyable is to make sure you are not tired,  you have eaten,  you are well rested,  you stay hydrated and you are wearing comfy shoes….. after all shopping IS a sport to some.

Melissa Gauvreau – Styled by M

Stay fabulous!