My Journey to Ethical Fashion

Back in my college days I attended a popular Christian conference over one of my Christmas breaks. I went with my two roommates and we met up with several other friends from Mississippi State for a weekend of refreshment in the Word and Godly fellowship. Little did we know at the weekend's beginning that we would acquire information during our time at the conference that would seep deep into our hearts and souls and call us to action. We learned about human trafficking. 

I had never heard of this problem before believe it or not, and I can remember for days after we returned from the conference my roommates and I would sit around our kitchen counter discussing this issue. We were so burdened yet so unsure of how to play a part in the ending of trafficking. After many emotional conversations we came up with the idea of hosting a 5K to raise money for International Justice Mission and their fight against injustice around the world. 

This race began a work in my heart that deepened my compassion for others and opened my eyes to the reality of human depravity around the also led me to my husband, which is a funny story for another day! All this to say, once I became aware of human trafficking I simply could not forget about it. 

So what does this have to do with fashion? 

Well I desire to live my life in a way that aids the fight against human trafficking. Ben and I have made small decisions since marriage that we believe are truly making a difference. We buy our coffee every month from Sweet Aroma Coffee, a company that gives money to different organizations around the world who fight trafficking. I also have made the decision to buy jewelry from companies such as , a company that creates jobs and has ethical production practices. So now I want to take this to my closet. 

For quite some time I have felt as though the clothes hanging in my closet did not fit me. I do not mean I could not get them on my body or hated the way they hung on me (though this is true in some case) I mean they don't match my current season of life. I was married right out of college, so my wardrobe is full of "sorority college girl" clothes. Everything is oversized, too dressy, and flashy. Nowadays basic tees are acceptable every single day, even at church since we attend a laid back home church. I have been eager to figure out "my style" and even more eager to build a wardrobe that is both fitting and ethical. 


The first step is to learn about the differences between ethical or sustainable fashion and fast or mainstream fashion. Similar to the slow food versus fast food movement, ethical fashion is about promoting sustainable sourcing and quality garment production. In contrast, the fast fashion movement is in a perpetual race to the bottom to create more garments in less time and less money. The inevitable result is a frenetic industry that depends on unsustainable resources and often exploitative production. Ethical fashion turns this model on its head and promotes quality items made with sustainable materials and by workers paid a fair wage.

I feel that these words by sustainable fashion advocate,  Danielle L. Vermeer, describe it the best, ethical fashion is about promoting sustainability and high quality products. For me ethical fashion is also buying from companies that are transparent about their production process, factory conditions, and worker conditions. These things can often be hard to find but with some really great resources out there on the internet today we can learn a lot more about clothing production than we could 10 years ago. My goal today is to share my findings after hours of research.


  • Know The ChainA company that works hard to provide production information on hundreds of business and clothing companies.
  • Free to Work - This company provides scorecards for different clothing brands based on policies, transparency, monitoring, and worker rights. 
  • GoodGuide - A website where you can find product reviews for ethical, green, and environmentally safe products. 
  • FairTrade USA - Great starting point to help you understand what fair trade is, what companies there are out there, and more. 

Also, as a result of the California Transparency in Supply Chains Act, all companies that make a certain amount of money every year are required to disclose what they are doing to fight human trafficking and forced labor slavery within their production process. So you can go to a website like Gap, or Anthropologie, and by law they must have a statement about their practices that you can read. 


This is not an all inclusive list by any means. I was amazed at how many companies out their are a part of this ethical, slow clothing movement. For more lists check out these here, here, and here. I have included the companies that best fit within the style I am working towards for myself! 

  • Everlane - I list this company at the very top of my list for a reason. They are amazing. I recently purchased two simple tees from Everlane, and am in love. The quality is amazing, and the prices are not too terrible either. But my favorite part about this company...radical transparency is their motto. They list every single factory they use in their production process, as well as the exact costs of every item on their site. This is a must visit site even if you do not go to another option listed below. 
  • Alternative Apparel - A little more pricey, but full of beautiful staple closet pieces. I am looking at this tank, and this dress for my spring capsule. 
  • Seamly - Another beautiful site full of simple basics, this company celebrates creativity and art in the form of clothing. 
  • Threads for Thought - I have recently gotten really into holy yoga, and the collection of trendy tights, tanks, and tees are amazing on this site. 
  • TheRootCollective - This shoe and accessories company partners with small scale businesses in marginalized communities to create jobs. Their ballet flats are a must have. 

  • Cana Collection - Similar to Lululemon, this fitness clothing company features trendy work out clothing for men and women. 

Again, this is not an complete list, but simply some of my favorites out of all the companies I have stumbled upon through my research. I would love for you to leave other suggestions of fair trade, ethical companies that you know of in the comment section below. 

To be honest I am a littler scared about beginning this journey. It is so easy to purchase cheap clothing that I can afford right now on all the different trendy websites out there. However, I know this is worth the patience, money saving, and research that this practice requires. So I am committed to only buying ethically, as best as I am able, for the rest of 2015! Ah...I cannot believe I just typed that. Here we go! 

Do you shop ethically? What are your favorite companies? 

Bright and Bold - Creative Closet Link Up

I love colors, however I often find myself gravitating towards neutral and earth tones in my wardrobe. Nothing wrong with that, but my hubby loves when I wear bright colors, so I love wearing them because he loves them. I have tried to start stretch myself more in the color department, and knew I wanted to wear this exact combo when I signed up to be a co-host for the

Creative Closet

link up!

Also, I took these pictures while at the beach with my family back in July. So...I got my little sister and brother to jump in on the fun and share their fun, colorful looks with you also. :) I love my fam jam, and I think my little sister and brother are just so good looking, and I don't share them enough with you all. So meet my sweet sissy Taylor, and my handsome brother Reed.

Aren't they precious? My sister is a junior in college, and my brother is a junior in high school (they look older don't they?) I know...I look like I should be the youngest...yeah, yeah, yeah I get that all the time. One day I will be oh so happy to have that said, like when I am 40! right?! 

My sister can totally rock a kimono like no one's business, I think they look great on her, but I just cannot manage it. I think it may be because she is so tall, and I am well, not so tall. 

What are your favorite bold and bright pieces to wear? Link them up with us below!

The Creative Closet

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An InLinkz Link-up

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Bicycles, Books, and a Beautiful Dress

I was given this dress from eShakti as compensation for this review. However, all opinions are entirely my own, and reflect the way I genuinely feel about the experience and product!

I love being a girl. I mean seriously, pink is my favorite color, I love lipstick, and glitter, and dresses...oh how I love dresses. I especially love dresses that make me feel like I am stepping back in time. Back to a time where knee length dresses were at the height of fashion and flare skirts were in full swing. I am a sucker for old school dresses. Sometimes I think about what life would have been like if I grew up in the 50's, wearing retro dresses, and drinking root beer floats at a diner while listening to a jukebox...this dress makes me feel like Sandy from Grease.

So when


asked for me to write a review on one of their custom made dresses I was thrilled.


is a company that makes their clothing for you as the buyer. Every piece is tailored to your specific measurements so that you love what you are wearing and feel like it fits your body type. 

I knew I wanted to go with a dress, and I knew I wanted it to be something fun, but dressy enough to wear to a wedding ('tis the season of wedding bells am I right?!). So I chose this beauty. Complete with a bow and bicycles...and it was in my favorite color...hello perfection. 


The dress fit perfectly. It hugs me in all the right places, but is very modest, and just classy. It is probably my new favorite dress, and the bicycles really add a whimsical touch that makes me oh so very happy. I really like that the dress is fit and flare, this is my favorite style of dress, and it seems to be flattering on so many body types.

The only issue I had with the dress whatsoever was the length. I am a shorty y'all. Ben and I both are not really gifted in the height department...So I never wear longer dresses like this without heels because of how they make me look shorter, and I hardly wear heels because then I will tower over Ben, sprain my ankle at least once, and have a few blisters by the end of the night. However, I made an exception for this gorgeous dress, and pulled out my nude wedges. I think they rounded out the look and length of the dress.

My experience with eShakti and their beautiful 50s inspired


 could not have been more pleasant, and I could not recommend them more highly. To have a personal tailor make clothing specifically for your body type is like a dream, and this company does such a great job. I will wear this dress for years to come, and cannot wait to buy from them again in the future.

Get $25 OFF your first order!

, I promise! Make sure and follow them on





Also, thank you all for being so patient with me on replying to emails and comments. Things have been a little nutso around here lately, and I am slowly working my way through a daunting inbox and several posts worth of comments. I love you all so much for supporting my blog and engaging with me daily on this space. So just bear with me, and I plan to get back with each and everyone of you soon and very soon!

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Simplifying. What, Why and How!

Cheers, Oh Simple Thoughts readers! My name is Rachel and I write at Our Yellow Door about amazing grace, joyful marriage, intentional care, the humble home, and


. When Rachel asked me to write for Oh Simple Thoughts about having a simplified wardrobe, I literally got giddy.


how much I love simplifying.

My heart behind this post is to help you see why simplicity is so important, how it can lead you closer to Jesus, and how to carry that out practically in one of the most complicated areas of our lives: our closets.

Ready? Let's go!

The heart of simplicity is removing whatever distracts us from Jesus.

The discipline of simplicity is the process of eliminating the excess in order to focus on the important.

Excess gets in the way of what matters most. Namely, God and the things He has called us to.

In his book, "

Celebration of Discipline

", Richard Foster says, "The Christian Discipline of simplicity is an inward reality that results in an outward lifestyle. Both the inward and the outward aspects of simplicity are essential...To attempt to arrange an outward lifestyle of simplicity without the inward reality leads to deadly legalism."

Simplicity says, "I depend on and am satisfied by Christ, not my possessions. I do not need to try and impress others, because God's opinion of me is enough. I am not anxious about having more "things", because I know God will provide for me."

It is an attitude of the heart,

not a list of decluttering and organizing tips. And a great place to start is the closet.

Many of us only wear a fraction of what we own. Our drawers and hangers are stuffed with clothes we don't like, that don't fit, or don't go with anything else we own, and we struggle to put together outfits that we feel comfortable and confident in.

As women, I think our clothes can bring about an awful lot of anxiety for us, too.

Anxiety about clothing can distract us from God's providence and the natural beauty He has given us.

The anxious heart doesn't trust Him to provide for her needs, does not believe His approval is enough for her, and does not believe He has made her beautiful. The anxious heart isn't focused on the kingdom of God and His righteousness, but on itself.

Matthew 6:28-33
And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither spin nor toil, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown in the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, "What shall we eat?" or "What shall we wear?". For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

Clothes can also distract us from loving others well.

If you're trying to judge whether or not your friends are impressed with your newest top, check your heart. Are you wanting them to serve your ego? Are you more focused on yourself than them?

Before you get all huffy and march off in your cropped pants and patterned peplum top, hear me out. I'm not saying it's a sin to want to look nice. But if you are looking to other people to validate your worth based on the clothing you wear, check your heart.

We can eliminate closet anxiety and distraction by building simple wardrobes that are functional, well made, fit us well and make us feel good.

A wardrobe that has been carefully planned (pieces that we always feel confident in, pieces that can mix and match effectively, etc.) can eliminate SO much anxiety in our lives, leaving room to focus on things that are far more important.

So, how do you build a simple wardrobe?

1. Have a Plan

Know your style, the purposes you need your wardrobe to serve, and the colors you feel most comfortable in. Your wardrobe should serve and support


lifestyle, not the lifestyle advertisers think you should live. As purge your wardrobe and decide what "gaps" you need to fill, focus on buying clothes that work together well.

2. Quality, not quantity

Invest in pieces that are classic and well made. You will get more mileage out of a simple black dress from J. Crew than five flouncy clearance frocks from Target. (I'm guilty of this, believe me.) Buy less clothes so your closet is less cluttered. Make your clothes work for the space they take up.

3. Focus on fit

We don't wear the size labels on the outside, so if something fits better in a 10 than it does in an 8, leave your pride in the dressing room and buy the 10. Because, you know, a sweater that rides up like a frolicsome pony every time you move a muscle is annoying and will probably make you feel self-conscious.

4. Buy Ethically

Jesus is against the oppression of the poor. Unfortunately, our modern clothing industry does just that. Many of our clothes are made in sweat shops by underpaid (sometimes enslaved) people. Buying less clothing means you can invest in ethically made pieces. Check out companies like







Noonday Collection


Better Life Bags


Fair Indigo


Raven + Lily

. If you need more ideas, here's a great

Ethical Shopping Guide


5. PURGE Everything Else!

If it...

- hasn't been worn in the last year

- is torn/stained beyond repair

- is poorly made

- doesn't fit your life/style

- has four identical twins

- makes you feel self-conscious

...get rid of it! If the clothes are in good condition and would be a blessing to others, consider donating them.

My hope is that you can create a simple wardrobe that ultimately leads you closer to Jesus. I want you to be confident in His provision and love for you, and to feel comfortable in the body He has blessed you with. If you want more thoughts on having a simple wardrobe, check out

this post


Under Grace,









Thanks so much Rachel for sharing about this subject that I know is so dear to you! It means the world to have you here today and I am so grateful for all this truth and encouragement! 

ALSO*** There is a flash giveaway happening on my IG account from now until 10pm EST. Go check it out and enter, and use code OST15 for 15% off any item in the


shop until the end of the month. ENJOY!

Date Nights + Paper Beads

Happy Monday! So I am currently at the beach with my fam jam (third beach trip this Summer, what what!). So I am not as plugged in as normal, but still wanted to have posts for you all you sweet friends this week while I am away. Here is my latest go-to outfit...but it is "date night" edition. I don't know about you, but in our small town, there are very few places that call for really dressing up...well I am honestly not sure that there are any to be honest. Even the most expensive restaurants allow you to come in and eat wearing a t shirt and jeans if you wanted I normally go with a very cute and casual look for date nights!

As I have said before, I love pink, and I love this top. It is bright, and classy, and it the perfect weight for a summer top! And the turquoise necklace is made entirely out of PAPER BEADS! Isn't that just the coolest? I love this statement necklace, and I love this color combo! Oh, and it is your lucky day because it is currently on sale! Whoo!

And of course, we had to get Piper in on a little modeling action. She is a natural don't you think? :) It was actually really funny because while Ben was taking the pictures, he used a clip to hook her leash to his was funny! 

So what do you wear on your special date nights? 

Top -


, Skirt -

GAP (similar)

(from a long time ago), Flats -


, Necklace -

Noonday Collection

, Earrings -


 similar (gifted to me a while back)

Capsule Wardrobe // A Journey to a Life of Less

Happy Monday dear friends!! We had the best and most restful weekend ever. We picked blueberries on Saturday, like oodles and oodles of blueberries. It was so much fun. Ben and I took Piper with us out to a little house on the edge of town where we met several families form our church. The kids loved Piper, and she got to run around in wet grass chewing on sticks so basically it was a great time for all. We spent the rest of the weekend resting (literally...Ben and Piper slept on the floor in the living room for 4 hours) and working on projects! It was such an awesome weekend! I know many of you have heard me talking about this capsule wardrobe, and so many of you have expressed an interest in hearing more about it! So guess what? your waiting time is over!

I have been working on this post in my mind for several weeks now. Do any of you other bloggers out there do that? For whatever reason there are some posts that are so daunting to sit down and write, and this has been one of them for me. But this journey has been too good not to share with you all so here we go.

Capsule Wardrobe. This seems to be quite the trend now in blogland, but let me let you into a little secret. It is a trend, because creating a capsule wardrobe is so freeing. It allows you to stop buying into consumerism, and really figure out what makes you look and feel great! 

Let's back up...

What is a capsule wardrobe?

 It is a mini-wardrobe made up of versatile pieces that you love, and feel great in. The average number for this type of wardrobe is anywhere from 30-50 pieces, but more than that is really heading in the direction of a traditional closet. 

So why create a capsule wardrobe?

Well here is my answer...I needed to start fresh. The transition from college sorority girl to wife has been a tough one in the style department for me. I have felt that most of my closet reflects a previous life, and does not fit or compliment the life I am called to living now. I found myself taking hours to find an outfit to wear, and throwing half of my closet on the floor in the process. I would often feel defeated to the point of tears...all because of clothes. I would use phrases like, "I have nothing to wear", "I don't like how this fits", and "I think I need to change" all the time. So when I discovered the capsule wardrobe idea through some other awesome bloggers like


, and


, I knew I needed in on this. 

For me this was more than just cleaning out my closet, but a chance to turn over a new leaf. Gone are the days of forever 21 items for the sake of them being light on the wallet...I will save my money to buy items that I love, that look good on and make me feel comfortable, and that will last! I love this quote below, it really embodies what I am striving for! 

Also, this is more than just building an awesome and versatile wardrobe. It is about creating a wardrobe that does not rule over me. A wardrobe that does not cause me to believe lies about my body or possessions, but allows me to not think about my clothing. I desire to not worry about my clothing because as we see in Matthew 6,

"Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing...And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, but I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these."

This journey is more about getting to a point of contentment and rest in my clothing. It is about coming to a point that consumerism does not entice me, my clothes do not have dominion over my joy, and I can feel confident in the body the Lord has given me!

My first step was to do some research. I read several other blogs that I love about how they began the process to creating a capsule wardrobe. Check out these awesome ladies below. Next, I spent a whopping $8 and downloaded

Hayley Morgan'

s ebook

The No-Brainer Wardrobe

 and began to read it immediately. 

I loved this book! It was so practical, and Hayley gives you action steps at the end of each section so you can take it all one step at a time, and you are never overwhelmed. I began by going through every item in my closet, and made a no pile, maybe pile, and keep pile. 

Keep Pile-

this was only made up of items I truly loved, and have worn in the last 2-3 months. These were items that I didn't have to try on to remember why I love them, they are my go to's and the ones that I simple could not throw out.

Maybe Pile-

 These were all pieces that were questionable. Maybe they would only be wonr a few times a year, or are really bold statement pieces so they are not super versatile, or I find myself unsure of how I look when I put them on. I tried them all on and narrowed this pile down a little more. In the end this pile was mainly made up of nicer dresses, bold printed skirts and tops, and I am planning to keep them for 3 months and anything that is not worn at all during that time will go. 

No Pile-

this pile was for every item that I looked at with slight hesitation, or did not feel confident in. If it was too tight, fell weird, constantly had me tugging and went into this pile. All of these items are headed to


 (such an awesome website for name brand and designer clothes), Facebook to sell, or Goodwill! 

Next, I bought all new hangers at Walmart (for just $30), and switched all my clothes to the new sleek hangers. It is amazing how much this little step lifted the spirits of my closet. My next steps are to define my



identify the gaps

, and slim down my current wardrobe (it is sitting at about 50 items, and I really want to get it down some to about 35-40 items).

So stay tuned, I will be sharing more in the weeks ahead about my progress, my uniform, and my final capsule wardrobe! 

Great reads/resources to get started creating your own capsule wardrobe:

Un-fancy Wardrobe Planner Worksheet

Val Marie's Wardrobe Series

Hayley Morgan's eBook

Vallarina Creative's Closet Journey

A Harvest of Blessing's Living a Life of Less Series

What do you think about the idea of a capsule wardrobe? Is it overwhelming to you? Want to join in on this journey with me?

A Harvest of Blessing

Stitch Fix Box #5

Alright friends, so these pictures were taken on day two of being a puppy mama...and I was tired, and I couldn't shower because of Piper whining, and so my hair is in pigtail braids, I look sleepy, and have little makeup there ya go, 'tis life sometimes! 

But as always,

Stitch Fix

did not disappoint. This is my 5th box, and I am planning on continuing to receive monthly boxes as long as I continue feeling satisfied! I will give y'all a little insight into my life though (since that is what this blog is all about). I have begun developing a capsule wardrobe, which is a small, extremely versatile wardrobe made up of items that you love and feel very confident in. I will be sharing more in the months ahead about my journey with this project, but let's just say it has not been easy. I have purged my closets and drawers of TONS of things. So while I am continuing to do


, I am going to be very particular moving forward with what I do and do not keep! 

This first top was my favorite in this box. My favorite color is pink (I blame it on my sorority in college, Phi Mu) and I have been wanting for a long time to add some pops of color to my wardrobe! So this was a keeper and I have already worn it three times since I got it!

The next top was really cute also, it is light and airy which is perfect for a hot Mississippi summer, and it is striped, which through the capsule wardrobe project I have found are a go to pattern for me. So keeping this one also! The teal necklace that I have on was also included in my fix, and while it is cute I have too many statement necklaces in this color already, so back it went!

This top you may remember from a previous fix, and while I love the original top that I received, this is the exact same top, just slightly different colors, so back it went. No need for two of the almost identical top!

The last item in my box was this striped maxi dress. The material was AMAZING, it was stretchy and soft, but sadly the dress was a little short. I am really particular about maxi dresses touching the ground for me, and because this hit around my ankles I knew I would not feel comfortable in it and would end up not wearing it much. So it went back also! 

I am really looking forward to my next fix. I have left VERY specific notes of things that I am needing to fill in some gaps in my capsule wardobe! So I am looking forward to see what my stylist picks for me in July! If you want to see m pinterest board with my capsule wardrobe inspiration check it out


Try out


for youself and see how fun it can be to have a personal stylist help push you in your style!

Also, meet my sweet sponsor


! Courtney has a heart for her husband and marriage just like me and her blog is just adorable. She has written incredibly heartfelt posts like this one to her

13 year old self

, and this one about

her husband's journey with Multiple Sclerosis

and the Lord's provision! She is joy to read! So make sure and go check her out!!








Check out my sweet sponsor this month, Madison of The Wetherills Say I Do!

Julep Maven Box + Thoughts on Taking Care of our Temples

So here is the deal ladies, I am a girly girl. It is no hidden secret that I prefer air conditioning to the outdoors, pretty colors over neutrals, and bright pink lipstick over chapstick. So when I heard about this awesome subscription box through the blogging grapevine, I knew I had to try it out!

Julep  is an awesome company that desires to help women embrace who they are and how they are made and feel beautiful. I think this is a beautiful mission, because we are all made in the image of Christ, and to reject our bodies or find discontentment in how we are made is not pleasing to the Lord. Christ longs for us to feel beautiful in the exact perfect way he made us as women. I am a firm believer that while our identity should not come from the clothes we wear, it is good for a woman to take time to dress well, to invest in her physical appearance, and to take care of her temple of the Lord. 

So sometimes taking care of our temples means putting on some bright lipstick, curling our hair, and painting our nails. Sometimes it means running, doing zumba, or practicing yoga. Whatever it means for us it is good to take time to invest in our bodies as temples. 

So back to Julep they have a subscription box called the Maven Box and it is AWESOME. Each box includes two nail polishes, a nail care item, or three nail polishes. What you receive in your is based on your profile. You take a fun little quiz to determine you style, I am a bombshell! 

My first box included two colors that I would probably never pick for myself, but I love them on my fingers! The first was a light lavender shade, and was very feminine and perfect for late spring early summer. It was a subtle color so I didn't feel like I was being too flashy but still felt trendy while wearing this color. The second color was a shimmery jade green. It wasn't glittery by any means just had a slight shimmer that added some dimension and was very elegant when I was wearing it! 

My first box also came with cuticle cream, which I have not used yet. But I am looking forward to using it because I almost never buy fancy nail care items like this! 

The quality of the nail polish is unbelievable! It goes on smoothly, is quick drying, and stays on without chipping for almost over a week. I love that it strengthens my nails while making them look beautiful at the same time! 

The best part about this subscription is that you get your first box 


!! Isn't that amazing? When you sign up and use promo code FREEBOX you will receive you very first Julep Maven Box free of charge. So why not just try it out? You will not be disappointed and you could use a new nail polish shade or two for the summer season I am sure! :) 

Get your first Julep Maven subscription box free!

 I am sure you will love this company just as much as I do!

Stitch Fix Box #4

Stitch Fix

box number 4 came in the mail last week, and I was slightly disappointed. I was really hoping to get a few fun pieces for our beach trip (WE LEAVE TOMORROW!!!)... but that just did not happen. I only kept one item, and did not hate everything that was in my box but I did not love it all either. Here is what was inside!

First was this top, and I really like this style. But, I have a top in the exact same style from my first box, check it out


and I am not a huge fan of black and orange, so it was sent back! 

Next was this crochet sweater top. I thought it was cute...however, in Mississippi, the average summer day is at least 95-100 degrees so something made of this material just won't cut it around here. Also, there were two little pulls in the fabric right on the front, sadly. So I sent this back. 

I also had this necklace included in my box, and this is the one item I kept. It is really dainty, but dressy. I love the color of the teal, and gold is my go to when it comes to jewelry! So yay for one keeper! 

So the last top in the box was this mixed fabric mint top. Again, didn't totally hate it, in fact I loved the color of this one. But, the sleeves were really tight, and it stuck to me everywhere. Just not my favorite cut and fit. So back it goes. 

The 5th item was a pair of polka dot Capri pants, but because I am kind of short they hit right below my knees and looked more like awkwardly long Bermuda shorts on me. So needless to say they were not flattering and I did not even try them on. I am scheduled to get my next fix the first week in June, so I am crossing my fingers for more success next time. 

Have you tried

Stitch Fix?

What did you think? 

Meet my sweet sponsor this month, Jenni of Frankly My Dear!

Etsy Favorites - Tea Edition

Happy almost Friday! Can I start by saying, I am a coffee lover at heart, but lately I have really been struggling with changes in my body that I am feeling are a result of too much caffeine. I love to drink coffee every day but I have seen that in order for me to not have shaky hands and trouble breathing I need to only have one cup a day. And I am even considering implementing regular periods of "coffee detox" where I go off coffee and 


 for a week or so. So...enter my new love of herbal tea! I have NEVER been a big hot tea never seemed to have enough flavor and kick for me...but here I am, now proclaiming my love for the stuff. Yeah sure, it kinda looks like grass...but it is so yummy, and pretty good for you too!

So today I wanted to share with you my favorite Etsy finds that are all related to tea! Are you pumped yet?


Tea Towels

- I think these little guys from


are so beautiful! Perfect for wrapping up some yummy scones to keep them warm, or for placing tea cups and saucers on...just so pretty!


Organic Cotton Tea Bags

 - The best part about these is that they are REUSABLE! So no throwing them away, and they are perfect for all your favorite loose leaf teas! Check out more adorable linen and cotton items by

Natural Linens


Stamped Spoons

 - I am mildly obsessed with these guys! These bring a lovely charm to scooping sugar into your teacup. They would make a perfect gift, as well as a perfect addition to any tea party.


Vintage Teacups/Saucers

- Vintage is all the rage these days. If it is old, it is cool. But really, how special to drink tea from such a lovely and unique teacup? I think it would be so special to have a couple tea cups and saucers from my grandmothers, or great grandmothers even. Ben and I did not register for fine china when we got married (which I do not regret), but I do wish I had something fancy to drink out of from time to time. 


Herbal Tea Sampler

- I had the privilege of trying out this awesome sampler set of herbal teas from


a few weeks back. I had my sister help me out because she was in town and LOVES tea. We had so much fun trying all the different types of herbal teas included in the URPriceless package. They were all phenomenal. This package includes 10 sampler packets of the most yummy herbal tea blends. Best part? It is only $11!!!! 

This package comes with 10 different samples of a variety of herbal teas, all made by Shannon herself. Each package of tea can make about 2-3 8 oz. cups of wow, what a deal to get so much for such a great price. 

My top 3 favorites from the box I received were:

Peppermint Twist- This tea has peppermint, lemon balm, and orange peel, and it was so yummy. It was smooth with a perfect little zing from the orange! It instantly made me feel refreshed and energized! 

Sereni-Tea- One, the name of this tea is adorable, and so fitting. With chamomile, peppermint, lemon balm, rosemary, and dandelion root, this is the perfect tea to sip and unwind at the end of the day. I enjoyed this tea sitting in bed reading before calling it a day, and it was so yummy. I have thing for teas with chamomile so this was a winner for me! 

Keith's Delicious Tea- This also has peppermint, sensing a theme here? :) But this tea also has lemon balm and calendula in it, and it is perfect. The balance is wonderful, and the floral tones make it a lovely afternoon tea to serve to friends, or in my case, to sip with my little sister. 

All of the teas were yummy, but the ones with the peppermint were my favorite! Shannon's packaging was wonderful, and the sampler box arrived very timely! Shannon was a joy to work with, and I cannot recommend her Etsy shop more highly to you. Please go check her out! 


Tea Print

- Many of you have probably picked up on this by now, but I have a little thing for prints. Especially witty ones that are super cute and fun. Like this one, so cute to go above a coffee/tea station or in the kitchen! And I am in love with most everything the

Printed Palette 


What about you? Tea lover? What is your favorite type of tea?

So excited to introduce you to my small ad sponsors for the month of May! These ladies are gems, and a joy to follow along with through blogging!

Meet Lisa of

Lisa Loves John

! Lisa is what I like to call the DIY queen. She always has some cool project, craft or recipe appearing on her blog. She is a great source of inspiration!! 

What song can you not get out of your head?

Although I haven’t seen the movie yet, I absolutely love Frozen’s Let it Go.  I mean really, this song is so catchy, and basically impossible to get out of your head.  And I’m not going to lie, I love all the cute remakes of the song too!

What has been your favorite meal lately?

Pizza all day, every day!  For real, I don’t discriminate… I love everything from wood fired pizza to frozen pizza – I will eat it all!

Go to summer nail polish color?

I love bright colors in summer, but my go-to is probably a nude… something low maintenance so if it chips, it isn’t too big of a deal, but it still looks clean and put together.

What is the Lord teaching you?

Without a doubt, the Lord is teaching me patience.  I need to release control and wait on God’s plan and timing.  Thankfully, HE has been patient with ME in learning this lesson.




Meet Meg of

Rivers and Roads

! I have loved getting to know Meg more this month. Her blog is always a source of encouragement, great info, and inspiration. 

What song can you not get out of your head?:

 I cannot stop singing "Multiplied" by NEEDTOBREATHE. Their newest album is AMAZING and I listen to it over and over.

What has been your favorite meal lately?:

 Breakfast for dinner. I know it's simple and well, breakfast, but it is delicious. I love whipping up some scrambled eggs, maybe some toast, and most definitely a delicious smoothie to get in some fruit + dairy.

Go to summer nailpolish color?:

 I am crushing on 

Essie's Ballet Slippers

 polish these days. It's the most perfect hint of pink for me. 

What is the Lord teaching you?

: I've been doing the She Reads Truth "The Risen Christ" plan, and absolutely love it. I've been reminded a lot about what my life should look like knowing that I have a risen and reigning Savior.  Thanks to 

Rend Collective

, I've also been thinking a lot about the art of celebration. There is so much to be thankful for even in the midst of this broken world, and we need to remember to celebrate those gifts! 




Stitch Fix Box # 3

EEK! My third Stitchfix box came in on Tuesday! My stylist heard my cry for tops loud and clear. This box was full of cute springy tops, four to be exact. There was also a bright infinity scarf included. Overall, this was not my favorite box, but I still found a couple pieces I decided to keep. Here is what was inside...

This was the cute scarf that was included. While I did not dislike the scarf I also did not LOVE it and I have a million scarves already. So see ya later Arrow Print Scarf.

I was a huge fan of the Dolman shirt that was included in my last fix. However, this particular Dolman sleeve knit shirt was fitted around the bottom, which I do not like at all. I have larger hips so this style just doesn't help me out at all. Sadly this little guy is headed back. 

This top was my least favorite of the fix I think. While I think it is perfect for spring it was just not me. The colors, the fabric, the sleeves...just not my taste. I did however really like the little twist in the back, very feminine and flirty, but alas, this twist knit top is headed back. 

Ahhhh, look at this lovely color! :) Pink is hands down my favorite color!

I am in love with this Filbert 3/4 Sleeve Popover Blouse. It is well made, comfy, and BRIGHT. Ben is always telling me I need more color in my closet, so hello to the prettiest bubblegum pink blouse you ever did see! Needless to say I am keeping this one. :)

Swoon. I love this new trend of loose Peplum tops. I have seen several variations of this top at well known places such as Anthro and J. I was so happy when I pulled this out of my box. I am a huge fan of embroidery, I think it is very whimsical and these colors will match perfectly with so much in my wardrobe. I am actually wearing this top right now as I write this shocker, I am keeping this baby! 

I cannot wait for my next Stitch Fix box to come in May. Ben and I will be celebrating our one year anniversary of marriage, I cannot even believe it as I am typing this. Anyways, we will be going to the beach for the weekend and I am hoping to have some fun new items to bring with me to wear while we are on our trip! I have absolutely loved doing Stitch Fix, and because of you AMAZING people joining me I have had so many referral credits that I was able to get both of these tops for free! What a blessing! :)

Sign up for your Stitch Fix today! I promise you will not regret it! :)

What is your favorite item from this box?

P.S. A Huge thanks to all you lovely ladies who linked up for our little coffee date yesterday! It was so refreshing to read all your stories and hear your hearts. THANK YOU for being so open and vulnerable! I hope it was a blessing to you as it was to me! Hoping to make this an occasional link up!

P.P.S. ANNOUNCEMENT- I am now offering a few limited sponsorship spots! Check them out by clicking the sponsor button above! Would love to have you hanging out on my sidebar and have the opportunity to get to know you a little better! :)

A Harvest of Blessing | Jack of All Trades Link Up
(Join me over at A Harvest of Blessings for some sweet encouragement through the Jack of All Trades Link Up, there is a place for everyone!)

Much Love,


Stitch Fix # 2 (winner winner)

So many of you have heard me talk about how awesome 


 is. You get a personal stylist, which is really cool, and your stylist picks out pieces for you that he/she thinks you will like OR that they think you can totally pull off. So some of the pieces may be out of your comfort zone but I think it is good to push yourself in what you wear. Participating in 


 has been great for me as I have been transitioning from college sorority life to being a wife in full time ministry. I have wanted to wake up and get dressed everyday in something other than a t shirt and sweats but sometimes that has been hard because I feel as if all my clothes still reflect who I was in college and not who I am now. Wanna read about my first Fix? Check it out 


So this was my second Fix and it was wonderful. Randall my stylist heard my cry for more tops and some color! I am so happy with all that was in my box. 

Here is top numero uno. It is the most comfortable and well made fabric EVER. It is stretchy and has tapered sides...I am in love, in fact I wore it all day yesterday. I am keeping this one for sure. I think it looks great with my dark skinny jeans, but I will also pair it with my white washed boyfriend jeans, shorts or even a casual cotton skirt.

Also, don't y'all love my new boots? I have agonized over a good pair of riding boots for so long. I saved money from my crochet orders and purchased the Frye boots of my dreams. They make me kinda happy.

This lovely elephant scarf was another item in my box. I LOVED it. It was very whimsical and fun, but I really needed tops more than scarves so I decided to send it back...womp, womp. 

So sad to say goodbye to these little elephants...maybe I can find a look alike scarf somewhere!

Top number two was a classy silk top with three quarter length sleeves. It is perfect for the style I am going for in this new season of life. Very feminine and modest, which I love. I am definitely keeping this top. I paired it with my bright pink crop pants here but I think it will be cute with a skirt, jeans, and shorts later in the spring. 

I love the pearl button detail on the sleeves...I am a sucker for pearls, but what truly southern girl isn't? :)

Top three was my favorite item in this fix. It was a flowing, sheer peasant top with gorgeous embroidery details. It goes perfect with my AnnTaylor polka dot crops, jeans, or a high waisted skirt for a more dressy look. I am in love with the romantic chic vibes it gives...aren't you? 

and the color is so fun!

It just makes me laugh. Also this top is perfect for me to pair my 

Noonday Earrings

 with. Have you heard about the awesome jewelry and accessories by Noonday? You all need to check them out. Great company with such a heart for Jesus and helping others.

hello are my favorite top in all the land. 

The final item in this Fix were these yellow "Just Black" skinny jeans. I liked them alright. They were a little too tight for my liking and because I have such large thighs I decided to send these back. The material was great though, they were soft and stretchy. So maybe in the right size these would be a winner. However, these jeans are headed back to Stitchfix land.

My stylist suggested that I pair the jeans with the top I kept in my last fix, and so I tried that and actually really though it was cute. What do you think?

I still love this top from Fix # 1...I wear it often and get so many compliments on it.

A big thanks to my awesome photographer. We are learning a lot about our new Canon T3i Rebel and Ben was quite the trooper to take and retake pictures of these outfits yesterday. 

So there you have it. I now have three new tops that now call my closet home. What are you waiting for? Try scheduling your own 


 today. Only $20 to schedule and that money goes towards the items you decide to keep. No shipping costs for returns. It is such a fun thing to try out! Do it!

My next Fix is scheduled for the beginning of April. Cannot wait to see what Spring things are included. 

In other news, we have had such a productive weekend thus far. Ben and I had fun at our little fashion photo shoot, he got to go shoot his new pistol with friends, worked on our end tables he is making, and I spent the afternoon designing new blog buttons for the different categories I blog about. It has been a great weekend and we are looking forward to a day of rest, complete with leading worship at church and a church wide potluck tonight. 

What have you done this weekend? Would love to hear form you!



Why I support handmade and small.

Good morning friends, it is bright and early before the sun here and I seem to have a lot churning around in my mind. So I thought I would come over here to share, encourage, and hopefully inspire a few of you. 

Do it yourself projects, websites like Etsy, and being crafty are all the rage right now. I think there is a good reason for this...people long to create meaning. We long to bring significance to the world and to share that significance with others...and often that desire leads to creating. It is encouraging to me to see people creating, not just running down to the store to buy something (not that there is anything wrong with that)...but people desiring to use their own two hands. I find that I am wired to create. I may not be incredibly gifted in one type of hobby or skill, but I have a very strong determination to learn and get better at whatever hobby I am into. 

So why am I saying all this? Well I think that "hobbies" or skills, gifts or talents, or whatever you want to call them are God-given and should be cultivated, supported, encouraged, and affirmed. (Some of those words may be slightly redundant but I am just trying to make a point hehe) We know in the Bible there are spiritual gifts mentioned, (1 Corinthians 12:1-11; 14:1-5; Romans 12:6-8) and I am not ignoring these or downplaying them. I think it is so very important to ask the Lord to reveal our gifts to us, such as mercy, prophecy, hospitality, etc...however those gifts are not what I am focusing on necessarily in this post. What has been on my mind are the gifts like--woodworking, sewing, crocheting, baking, having business savvy just to name a few. These things are not necessarily spelled out in the scriptures, but does that mean that being passionate about these things is not supported and encouraged by the Holy Word of God? NO, they are supported.

Let's take a look at Proverbs 31 (for those of you not familiar with this passage, it is written by a king who is reciting or recording an oracle that his mother taught him, it lays out the qualities of a godly woman and wife, and is a great passage to turn our eyes to as women as how to manage our homes, marriages, and lifestyles to bring glory to the Lord)...

"She seeks wool and flax, and works with willing hands." (vs. 13)

"She rises while it is yet night and provides food for her household and portions for her maidens." (vs.15)

"She considers a field and buys it; with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard." (vs 16)

"She perceives her merchandise is profitable. Her lamp does not go out at night." (vs. 18)

"She puts her hands to the distaff, and her hands hold the spindle." (vs.19)

"She makes linen garments and sells them, she delivers sashes to the merchants." (vs. 24)

"She looks well to the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness." (vs. 27)

The passage goes on to say that this type of woman is to be praised by her children and also her husband. Wow. Those verses speak to baking, sewing, selling, buying, being a business woman...these verses affirm the idea of creating. It is a way to be a blessing to others, which in turn shows the love of our Father and brings him glory. It is a way to keep us as women from becoming lazy and idle in our free time, which helps us to manage our lifestyles and homes well, which brings the Lord glory. All of this brings the Lord glory.

So...why do I support handmade businesses or small businesses? Because women that step out in faith by using gifts the Lord has given them to bring him glory through creating inspire me. I feel like they are a picture to the world around them of something the world cannot fully understand. The world tells us, follow your heart, do what makes you happy, why? to make yourself happy, to make money, most importantly for yourself. But godly women striving after this Proverbs 31 goal do what they love not for themselves (though it may bring them immense joy and fulfillment) but they use their gifts as blessings to those in their households and other outside their homes...and greatest of all they use their gifts to bring our Father God glory. Bringing him glory is why we are here, if we forget that we lose sight of our mission as a child of God.

I have been so inspired by other blogs that I follow, Etsy shops, and just individuals that love creating. These people have pushed me to use my free time more wisely and to really dig and find out what my passions and giftings are. So I thought it would be fun to begin periodically sharing a business I support here on the blog. (Handmade Highlight) Sometimes I may have interviews with the individual, other times I may just tell you a little about them and include a link to their website. I will try to do this once a month or so. I think it will be a fun way to honor and highlight some really inspirational people as well as push us all to be more creative in our ministry as women.

So for today I am highlighting my dear friend Sera Beth Pinkard. Sera Beth and I were sorority sisters in college and became dear friends towards the last year of school. She has a huge heart for business, fashion and puppies (her little pup Marley is one of the cutest things ever). Sera Beth owns a small online clothing/accessories store called Edna Grayce's. (oh did I mention she is getting married in just a month? she has started this whole business all while being engaged and planning a wedding! what a gal!)

Sera Beth loves the Lord, and desires to use her business as a way to bless others in a very tangible way. A portion of all her sales always go to various charities, organizations, and causes. She does not charge shipping on her items as an additional way to bless her customers. All of her pieces are great for women of all ages, they are modest, flattering, stylish and affordable. Here are a few of my favorite pieces. 

(just bought this beauty of a cardigan from Sera Beth yesterday. Its warm, cozy, and goes with so much. Perfect piece to dress up a t shirt)

I asked Sera Beth a few questions so that ya'll can get to know her just a tiny bit better...So here she is...

Rachel: "What drove you to start your own business?"
Sera Beth: "I had the desire to be able to determine the heights of my own success and didn't want anyone else to do that for me."

Rachel: "How do you pick out pieces for your store?"
Sera Beth: "I have three things I usually go by: my intuition when I see new items, customer feedback, and I also invest a good bit of time following fashion bloggers to stay on top of the latest trends!"

Rachel: "What is your favorite scripture verse?"
Sera Beth: "For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future. (Jeremiah 29:11)"

Rachel: "What are your top 3 closet staples?"
Sera Beth: "For the winter season they have been my Frye boots, basic color fleece leggings, and scarves. You can put those on with any top, dress, or sweater and have a cute yet comfy outfit."

Rachel: "What inspires you most?"
Sera Beth: "I have to say I always thought my dreams and goals for my life were always too far fetch but in college I read the book, "Rich Dad Poor Dad" and it gave me the affirmation that I was wired with an entrepreneur's mindset!!! We are just wired a little different in our thinking process. I promise I am not crazy, that book really did inspire me to live out my dreams to the fullest."

Thanks so much Sera Beth for being the first business highlighted in my new blog series Handmade Highlight. Love you sweet friend, and I am so proud of all the work you are doing!

Everyone head on over to Edna Grayce's Website and check out all the adorable stuff Sera Beth has right now. I can guarantee you that you will not be disappointed when you purchase from this little lady.

I hope this was as inspirational to you as it was for me. Let's push each other to be doers and use our free time to cultivate gifts in order to bring the Lord glory and to be a blessings to others.


To the inner fashionista.

I am giddy... no elated...overjoyed...beside myself...let me tell you why...

Today my very first Stichfix package came whole day early. And boy oh boy was I pumped about it! (if you couldn't tell from all the highly emotional adjectives I just used)

Hold on...What is Stitchfix you ask? Well let me tell you...

It is only the best thing ever invented in the realm of shopping. Stitchfix is a website that allows you to do your online shopping with (get this) your very own personal stylist (for a tiny fee). It only costs $20 per fix and you can schedule fixes monthly or one time or whenever your heart desires! So then once you schedule your fix, you fill out your style profile to let you stylist know your taste (you can even include links to your style board on pinterest to help the stylist select items perfect for you). Then your amazing stylist works her stylist magic and ships you a package with 5 pieces completely tailored to your likes and dislikes ranging in prices (the best part of all that its a SURPRISE)...then you open your package of awesomeness, try on the pieces, pick which ones to keep (or keep all 5 and get 25% off your total) and then ship back the pieces you do not want to keep in the handy mail bag that is conveniently stamped with a label...Your styling fee goes towards your purchase. 

then you sit back, and feel like a celebrity. haha maybe not quite but you feel pretty fantastic. 

go right now and check it out, I promise you will be so happy! You only have to pay $20 and there are no strings attached, you do not have to keep a single thing. And this is for women of ALL AGES...But really...go check it out.

And now without further are the pieces that were in my package today (excuse the light, my handsome photographer doesn't get home from work until after dark when all the natural light has gone to bed.)

This was favorite top, hands down. I love the pattern and the pop of color. The material feels great and you can tell it is well made. The sleeves can roll up and button at the elbow. I definitely kept this baby!

I also adored this sweater...however as sad as this is I could only handle one item this time for financial reasons and I have a lot of beige, black, and neutral colors in my closet already. So this comfy lounge sweater went back to StitchFix world. I will miss you cuddly sweater...

I would literally never buy a jacket like this, but I liked it a lot once I tried it on. I would probably never even pick this up if I saw it at a store, but it was cute and different and again very well made. Sadly, since money does not grow on trees, this little guy went back. 

I liked the idea of this dress, but alas it was too big and didn't really flatter me in my opinion. Adios amigo. 

This was my least favorite piece in my fix. It is called a Dolman top and the style is just not something I love. It is made of spandex, similar feel to that of the piko tops, however (not pictured) it has a tight fitting band that hugs too close for comfort around the hip region. I do not like tight fitting clothing around my hips so see ya later blouse. 

Overall, this was a great first Fix and I have already scheduled my next one for the beginning of March. I would have bought the jacket, the sweater and the first top if I had enough money! But not this time. I am so happy with my one new top though and cannot wait to wear it out and about. So what are you waiting for? 

Go try out Stitchfix, what do you have to lose? absolutely nothing. This is affordable, fun, and a way to stretch your style boundaries gradually. 

What do you think of these outfits? Which ones would you wear?