Friday, November 15, 2019

{birdie's leopard flats}

I wasn't lying when I said that I wanted a second pair of Birdie's shoes! The quilting on the bottom of the shoe is so comfortable it feels like a cloud. I also have a weakness for calf hair leopard in the fall... it's the best neutral in my opinion.

When the weather gets cooler this is always an easy, go-to look for running errands, grabbing dinner with a friend, or running errands. A classic pair of dark wash jeans with a big sweater and loafers - perfection! It finally hit low 70's in Key West this week and I knew this sweater would work well because it's lightweight and loose. The cut out shoulder detail is so cute and I love that it shows off some skin - makes up for the oversized look! It's a great price point from Amazon too. Since all of my sweaters are in storage I realized I was going to have nothing to wear when I went to OBX for Thanksgiving and Baltimore for Christmas! Amazon to the rescue! I didn't want simple sweaters - I ordered things that had fun colors or patterns and different cuts! I'm excited to share some more this season. I'm really looking forward to spending some time with family and being up East!

Love Always,

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

{rent the runway unlimited}

I've been using Rent the Runway for years to rent dresses for black tie weddings, galas, fancy events, etc! But it's been only a year since I started using Unlimited... probably feels like a lot longer since I talk about it all the time, right? I think it's safe to say I'll never turn back. My work wardrobe during the week is pretty much only RTR Unlimited - it makes getting ready in the morning so much easier (and more fun) when I have a new designer or new style to put on. It's also fun to be able to try out accessories like jackets, purses, and jewelry.

I know not everyone is familiar with RTR Unlimited so I'm answering some basic questions for y'all. If you want to try it out you can use code JROGERS50 to get 50% off your first month! That's the BEST deal that Rent the Runway is offering!!

How much is it each month?
It is $159 a month but with my code you get your first month for $79.50!

Is there a limit to how many things you can rent per month?
You can rent up to 4 items at a time with the option of renting additional pieces for an extra price! But you're able to switch out as many times as you want during the month.

How do you return things?
Simply package everything you rented (plastic bags and hangers too) in the blue canvas bag the items were delivered in. There is a prepaid return label inside that you put in the front pocket, zip it up, lock it (with a provided zip tie inside, but it's not necessary), and then place it in a UPS bin. It normally takes two business days to be scanned at a return facility. Once the items are received you'll be able to place your next order in your account.
If you live near a store you can drop off and scan at a RTR - the second you scan the barcode and place the item in a bin a spot opens up in your account. Lots of WeWork locations offer this option too. Scanning and returning in store allows you to avoid the return shipping and delivery times!

What is shipping like?
It normally takes two business days for my order to arrive if I place it before noon!

How does returning things at the store work?
It's a piece of cake: simply find the barcode on the garmet or accessory box/bag and scan it under the iPad's barcode reader, the iPad will say "thank you [your name] for returning your item", place item in the bin along with hangers/plastic/garment delivery bags, and then try on new items to rent right away or place your order online.

Are there limits to what you can rent?
Nope! Everything you see on the Unlimited page is available for you to rent :)

How long can you keep an item?
As long as you want! If you have a RTR Unlimited membership every month then you can rent it as long as you'd like. But, if you're using something that often you should take advantage of your membership and purchase it.

Can I switch out in store if something doesn't fit?
Yes, absolutely. But sizes in stores can be limited so don't bank on a size or item being available. I rely on the online review heavily. I try to make a point of taking a photo of myself in everything I wear so that I can help other future renters out!

Can you go to the store to try on things before?
Yes and if  you find something you love you can rent it and leave with it in one visit.

How does it work with cleaning the clothes? Do you have to wash before returning?
Renting is truly the most sustainable practice in fashion! You don't have to clean or wash anything that you rent. All of the plastic that you send back gets recycled as well. I feel like RTR should be known as a dry cleaning company more than a fashion company because they're sustainable in their practices and delivering clean garments 24/7.

Can you have things sent to your destination?
YES! I was able to test this out when I visited DC last month and it was a game changer. Just make sure your delivery date works with your trip and then send everything back before you travel home. My best friend just used this trick when she visited me in Key West two weeks ago too!

What's your favorite clothing item that you've rented?
This is really hard to say... there are a couple of things that I've gone back and rented a second time and there are also items that I've ended up purchasing. I have a RTR highlight on my Instagram that is dedicated to RTR Unlimited and almost everything I've worn is saved there.

How does renting accessories work?
Exactly like renting clothes. Any accessory rented counts towards your limit of 4. Purses come in bags, jewelry in boxes, and sunglasses in a case. Be sure to hang on to these navy blue covers because the items need to be sent back in them. You may also notice that there are hanging barcodes inside the purses - keep these intact so that they can be returned easily and you won't get charged. Barcodes are on the boxes for all jewelry rented.

Are you able to purchase things that you rent?
Yes AND they're normally for sale at steep discounts!! I've purchased a MinkPink skirt I couldn't live without and a Clare V straw tote bag that I use almost daily! You have to be renting a piece to purchase it. Once you purchase, a spot in your account opens up to rent something new!

Can I rent anything from Unlimited with regular RTR order?
No, not all items available in Unlimited can be rented by someone without a membership. This means that having access to Unlimited gives you a larger variety of designers, styles, and options.

My top tips for using RTR Unlimited:
1. Heart as many things as you want to have a "quick list" of items you want to rent
2. If you love something, purchase it right away! This frees up another spot in your account so that you can maximize your membership.
3. Make multiple lists like "weekend wear", "accessories", "wedding", etc. so that if you need something to rent for a particular event you aren't scrolling through all of your hearts.
4. If something doesn't fit that you rented, send it back ASAP. Especially if you're dealing with shipping times - you don't want to hold on to something because it's taking up a spot!
5. Read all the reviews online and look at photos. I commonly unheart something when I read that it doesn't have a lining or was hard on small chested girls.
6. Know your measurements... for some designers a 2 could be an XS or it could be a S. Knowing your measurements will take out some guesswork and help you get it right the first time.
7. Go out on a limb and try something new. The worst case is you send it back and place another order!
8. Take advantage of the cost savings - use RTR Unlimited for when you travel so that you aren't tempted to buy a new coverup. Rent a coat if you're going someplace cold so that valuable suitcase space isn't wasted with a bulky jacket and you can carry-on!

Did I miss anything? If you have tips - leave them below! I'm always looking for ways to maximize my membership :) Any other questions... let me know! Don't forget to use code JROGERS50 to get 50% off!

*Thank you to Rent The Runway for sponsoring this post. All thoughts, opinions, and photos are my own. While this post is sponsored, RTR is a company I support, believe in, and have chosen to support for years. Thank you for supporting the businesses that help support this blog so that it can continue to grow.*


Friday, October 18, 2019

{birdies leather flats}

Something about searching for a comfortable and cute pair of flats makes me cringe... some people hate searching for jeans and I hate looking for flats that fit your foot well and won't give you blisters after walking 2 blocks. Don't get me started on the aches of a flat arch after a day too!

Enter Birdie's! I've heard people raaaave and go on and on about how comfortable their shoes are so I was really excited when they asked me to try a pair out. Well let's just say my first experience wearing these shoes included my mom and I walking all over the neighborhood looking for a pretty tree to take photos in front of (haha yep, just being honest). I barely even realized I had brand new flats on they were so comfortable - that rarely happens! I also had horrible blisters on my feet from wearing closed toe heels the week before and they didn't get irritated at all. They have 7, yes seven, layers of cushion inside the shoe. "The support of a sneaker, the softness of a slipper, and the style of a designer flat" - I don't think I could have explained it better myself!

I've always gravitated towards neutral shoes - I feel like they make your legs look longer and they just go with everything! This leather pair is so soft and squishy on the inside that I truly feel like I'm wearing a slipper! They run true to size but a little snug because they mold to your feet over time - so the leather stretches slightly and the sole forms around your foot. Mine feel like they were custom made to my foot after wearing them for only a week.

There's no doubt in my mind that I'm going to order another pair... hello, Cheetah!!

Have you ever tried Birdie's before or heard of them?

Love Always,

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

{netflix movies to cuddle up to this fall}

While I love living in an endless summer... there's nothing I love more than curling up on the sofa with a glass of red wine, lighting a fall candle (Sweater Weather from Bath & Body Works - the best), and cuddling under a soft blanket when it's cold outside.

Am I right? Or am I right?

Last night my sister and I began texting about cute movies we'd seen on Netflix. The new ones we wanted to see or had liked the most were all Original Netflix movies that came out this year! We texted back and forth about our favorites and we found ourselves scrolling through the search tab to find new ones we wanted to watch and sending each other ones we'd seen and recommended. My absolute favorite was Always Be My Maybe - Ali Wong is the best!

Now, these are mainly chick flick movies... that's what I prefer to watch to relax before bed. Scary movies get me too freaked out (Secret Obsession is the one thriller on this list - but that's because the main character was a Disney Channel actress back in the day haha) so I stick to romcom's! This list is random because they're mainly Netflix Original's but some were added because I loved the actor/actress (KJ Apa and Noah Centineo anyone?!).

Okay so now I need your input... I'm positive I'm missing some stellar movies because there's only so much searching you can do haha! Leave your favorite Netflix movie you've watched recently below - or add it to the checklist and share on Instagram! Happy snuggling up on that sofa, friends :)

Love Always,

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

{coffee date no. 9 | key west}

Hi from my new home, Key West! 

I thought that I would have some really epic post telling you guys on the blog but things just got so out of hand. At least I had a chance to film a cute video to tell IG? So here we are - back for another coffee date post :) I say this every time I write one of these but... it's been awhile! I always use these posts as a way to get a bit more personal, fill y'all in, and just have a chat. It also continues to amuse me that I call them coffee dates when I don't actually drink coffee. So you grab a coffee this morning, I'll grab a cup of tea, and let's catch up, okay?

Wanna hear something crazy? This post was technically "started" March 2018... That's when I found out that Kyle's next assignment was going to be in Key West. But everything I wrote was sappy and so unaware of what was to come haha. We had ranked our list the previous Fall (September 2017) and then waited for what felt like forever. For everyone who doesn't understand how this process works (cough I'm still figuring it out), Kyle basically ranks all of the ships available for his officer level, we wait until everybody gets sorted into their assignment in March, and four months later they move and start on a new ship (each assignment is 2-3 years for him). It's almost like sorority recruitment haha you rank your top houses and then they pair people up based on different evaluations. When we first met (December 2016) we talked about moving together for his next assignment. We were together for over a year before that would become a reality but we knew that his career was going to have a big impact on our relationship early on. The fact that he was so open about our future way down the line was really attractive to me - he was thinking about us and not just himself. So now you're probably looking at that timeline and thinking... "wait it took you a year to move to Key West?" The short answer is YEP!

Here's something else that's crazy... the cost of living down here is INSANE. I'm talking more than those ridiculous NYC apartment stories you hear. There is nowhere to build up or out here since it's an island. So we actually began the crazy process of looking to buy a house! Yep, we're now homeowners!! Kyle moved into our cute little house in January :) so when I came to visit a bunch of times this year I was actually staying in my new home!! Sorry to everyone who asked if I could share the airbnb hehe. He had all of his stuff in storage for 6 months since he had no home base while looking for a place (something that was really hard to do when he was out at sea on patrol too)! So he was overjoyed when he could move his stuff in [sans a sofa lol]. We've been purchasing things for the house since January: bar stools, dining room, light fixtures, etc. If you follow my stories you may remember that Kyle and I were fixing up a wood table over Christmas... that's our backyard furniture!

This was probably THE biggest secret I've ever had to keep. I wanted to shout it from the rooftops every morning because I was so excited for this chapter of my life to begin - I was ready for a change and wasn't ready for the long distance that we had coming our way. But things needed to be figured out: my job, Kyle getting time off to help me move, ending my apt lease, etc. There are a lot of moving pieces when you're trying to combine two people's lives. Kyle worked day and night getting so much done at the house before I moved in (painting the whole interior, installing blinds, hanging curtains) - it made my move in process so much easier.

I only had 2 weeks to pack up once the pieces fell into place. Everything truly happened so quickly I can't believe it. Because of traveling for work I didn't start packing until a week and a half before Kyle was going to show up at my apartment with a moving truck. I ordered boxes, bubble wrap, tape, etc. and began purging (aka donating) all of my belongings the second I got back from work travels. To say I worked non-stop would be an understatement. I woke up at 5:30 am every morning and went to bed past 11:00 pm every night. I lived in my (adorable) studio apartment for over 3 years so I fit into it pretty well and I had 3 closets... as a blogger you can only imagine that I filled those up hehe. 

My last day in my office was August 2nd (I'm still with the same architecture firm) and everything after that felt like a whirlwind. I wish I had had more time to say goodbye to all of my friends (and have a going away party) but life truly happened. I underestimated how much work it was going to be to pack up everything, sell all my furniture, scrub my entire apartment, and get things ready to be carried out Monday, August 5th by MYSELF. Part of me knows that I will be back to visit soon so that helped my heart. [Fun fact: I am atrocious at goodbyes... I cry instantly so I do the awkward quick hug and avert my eyes and try to get out otherwise I'm a sobbing puddle. When I said goodbye to two of my best friends the Sunday before I left I had to call my mom to have her calm me down.]

Kyle and I got the moving truck packed up on Monday, we drove to Baltimore that night (where my momma and Mimi live), had one last meal and goodbye with them, and then Tuesday morning we hit the open road. Oh my gosh y'all... we drove 13 hours the first day and roughly 8 on Wednesday. Then you'll never guess what we did Wednesday night... WE UNPACKED. It was a marathon I swear. But, by Friday night, the last box was unpacked and I took even more stuff to Goodwill. No joke, I gave away 3/4 of my belongings. I don't consider myself to be materialistic but I'm also NOT a minimalist. I'm a self proclaimed accessories girl! To be completely candid, I think I cried 5 times every day while unpacking... can you believe it took me that long (March 2018 - August 2019) to have it finally sink in that I moved and left my family and friends on the East coast? I had a major reality check.

My emotions have always been a bit of a rollercoaster but nothing prepared me for the last two weeks. Thank goodness the biggest pro of this month has been being with Kyle. It has completely solidified that I've made the right choice moving here to be with him. I don't think we've had many problems becoming roomies - except he is a LOT cleaner than I am. I thought I was type A and OCD but he may have me beat! We both agree that everything has its place but I'm used to getting creative with storage and he isn't. After talking through some things he pointed out that the USCG sets aside 30 min at the end of every day for everyone to tidy up their space and the ship.... what?! Can you imagine if every office set aside time that we could bill just to clean the space we worked in. What a freaking awesome habit that is instilled in them!! 

I'm very grateful to have him around because the experiences I've had on social media have been very unique and different. I knew I was going to lose followers - my content will be changing (hi, big city scene to a small island lifestyle) and there aren't big name brand companies or gyms down here. But what I wasn't expecting was all of the negativity and straight up mean, rude, hurtful comments. I don't want to dwell on this... but I didn't expect it. at. all. I had so many people giving me unsolicited advice that was actually helpful that when I received a backhanded comment I focused on it and it blacked out all of the positivity I was working on. Having someone tell you that "you've lost your sparkle since the move. It seems like you are struggling for content instead of it being so natural" suckssss. But don't worry... then they added "starting over is hard, you'll get there!" OH OKAY, THANKS. For the record, the only reason I'm not posting as often is because I'm living my life and just simply figuring things out. The content that's posted isn't forced because it's the true natural moments in my life! Or fun memories from DC I want to share!

Working remotely has been getting better! Do y'all remember what happened during the first two days of me working from home?! Hahah it's honestly funny now. The first day Comcast went down so I went to a coffee shop and then the second day it happened again and THEN the whole island lost power after I relocated to Starbucks hahahaha I mean whatttt are the chances?! I've tried to create a routine for myself in the morning that includes waking up and actually getting dressed and putting on makeup. That way I feel more like a human in the working world ;)

But this cute little island sure makes the phrase "working for the weekend" take on a whole new level. There's nothing more incredible than having the ocean in your backyard!!! Entire Saturdays spent out on the boat, catching dinner, biking home from happy hour with the rest of your cocktail, waking up to roosters crowing, hearing the rain on palm trees... *pinch me*. I get to do it all with my best friend too! No mean comment can ever take that away from me!!

We also got a moped scooter!!! Truly living the KW lifestyle with this one - I'll have to take a photo with it soon to share. It's made it easy to bop around and it will eventually be how I get to the gym (I still have to be more comfortable driving it lolz).

I may not have it all together yet but every day is sure an adventure! I don't want to think about what it will be like when Kyle leaves for his next patrol soon... but I have a game plan :) I'm going to visit that gym I keep talking about finally, I have a club that I want to join, and I'm going to look into service opportunities! Where there's a will, there's a way! I hope to make some new friends that have the same interests and hobbies as me outside of the partying that Key West is so known for.

I'd love to know what y'all want to see more of? Workouts, recipes, fashion, home design, DIY, travel guides, a specific Key West post? My DM's and email are always open! In the past when I've visited, all my photos were taken with my tripod and remote so those are going to get broken back out! The blog has been set aside as I try to gather my new normal but it's my favorite hobby... I can never let Southern Anchors go! Especially because I have a new hashtag... #southernmostanchors ;)

Cheers to the next chapter and learning <3

Love Always,

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

{amazon kaftan + dressing for the heat}

Amazon Kaftan // Steve Madden Shoes (go up a size they run small) // J.Crew Purse //

Photography by Lauren

Amazon Kaftan // Steve Madden Shoes (go up a size they run small) // J.Crew Purse //

When the temperature goes up normally the amount of clothing goes down. Ha you know exactly what I mean... the thought of having clothes on when it's 100+ degrees outside (DC's reality last weekend) makes me want to stay inside all day! When you feel like your skin burns just from being in the shade even the last thing you want to do is wear cute white jeans and a top. My go to is normally a romper or a cotton dress. Then I found this kaftan on Amazon... I ordered it knowing that I could return it instantly if it overwhelmed me size wise. [It says it's a beach coverup and I guess you could wear it for the beach but it's NOT see-through at all so it's good to go as a regular dress.] The colors are right up my alley but I felt like this could just be a looooot - I'm no Patricia from Southern Charm haha this isn't my usual style!

But the second I slipped this on I was in love! I tried it belted and loved it too! But sometimes you just don't want to wear a tight fitted outfit to fit your body (my mother hates it when I wear baggy clothes lol). The deep v in the front was so much fun and showed some skin without feeling like I was putting the girl on display and the low back helped the breeze come through. The side panels are sewn closer in to the body so that it doesn't look like you're wearing a bag and then the slits up the legs help the bottom of the dress flow open!

I joked that this was my Housewives of Key West look ;) I threw it on one hot morning and was able to walk to the grocery store comfortably! I think the key is because it doesn't stick to you - the shape and cut allows air to flow while still protecting you from the sun. I kind of think of it like seeking out shade... it can be sweltering hot outside but you're find to sit in the shade! This kaftan may be long and look like a lot of material but it protects you from the sun and creates some nice shade for your skin and legs! The material doesn't soak up and hold a lot of moisture either so the quick dry tendency is a game changer!

The best part is I just love the colors. They're vibrant and playful and remind me of shades of a sunset! Who doesn't love a great Amazon kaftan find like this?!

Love Always,
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