Monday, June 19, 2017

Simplifying My Closet




About a month ago, I gutted out my closet, and I ended up with around 20% of what I had before. Lots of people told me I was crazy - "I mean, you're a FASHION blogger!!! You NEED all of it!" - but I was so tired, y'all. I was tired of constantly looking in my closet to only find things I didn't really like or that didn't fit MY style. I know I sound like a broken record with some of this stuff... but this was one of the first steps I took in finally being ME and not living to be just another "fashion" blogger.

To be honest, this was all sparked when my husband and I watched this documentary by The Minimalists. It seriously changed my husband and I's perspective 100%. It showed me that what I was doing went against everything I stood for. It honestly made me feel sick. I had become that girl who purchased a pair of shoes just so someone else would buy them through LIKEtoKNOW.it and I, in turn, would make more $$$. Oh boy. And how did I decide what to purchase?? I would see what the "biggest" and "bestest" of fashion bloggers were wearing. Because if they were wearing it, their followers were buying it, so wouldn't mine as well?

It became a disease in all honesty... one that I couldn't kill. I COULD but I didn't WANT to. It wasn't clear to me that all of this was happening until after I watched this life-changing documentary. It's something everyone needs to see.

The first step for me was to completely gut my closet - which I did - and live with LESS. I went through each individual piece and if I didn't LOVE it... it went into the BYE FELICIA stack. In turn, I had a huge closet sale - which many of you shopped - and also donated a lot to charity. After everything had been sorted, I had close to 200 pieces of clothing, shoes, and accessories to sell or donate.

I sat in my office floor looking around me at the piles of clothing. What was all of this for? Imagine what I could have done with the money I WASTED on all of this. I could have gave more. I could have bought a meal for someone. I could have went on an amazing adventure with my husband. I could have LIVED more. I could have LOVED more.

Now that I have this simplified wardrobe, I have found myself feeling happier with what I'm wearing, and my focus is more on the good things. If I need something, or come across something I really like, I now have a rule: if one comes in, one must go out. I have seven pairs of denim (shorts included), around 5 dresses (all occasions), 10-15 tops (all seasons), and a handful of jackets (denim, utility, winter, etc). Concerning shoes.... I had close to 50 pairs. I now have around 12 in total - all seasons! I have only purchased two tops (t-shirts) and one pair of shoes since the clean-out. And all of them were on sale! It's been such a freeing experience and I'm so glad I made this change.

I've had quite a few people ask me, "Are you still going to post your outfits????" Of course! But they are pieces that I LOVE and that make me feel good! I just want to say that I'm sorry if I ever made you feel like you NEEDED a pair of shoes just because I was wearing them. I'm sorry if you ever swiped a credit card just to be like me (or any other blogger). I love you guys! I'm so thankful for each and every one of you. For those of you who are sticking around through this transition - I am beyond grateful. 

I've found throughout this process - simplifying my wardrobe, not posting on Instagram, etc - that it's more about Him and less about me. That's all I wish - to glorify Jesus - and I can't wait to see where He takes this. 

As you all know, I've been on a major Instagram cleanse - I deleted my blog account completely - and it has been so good for me. (You can read my post on why I did that HERE) I'm still praying over it all but I feel like I'm (almost) ready to come back. For now, I'm giving out the new Instagram handle, but I won't be posting yet. You all will be the first to know when that happens! If you want to be ahead of the game, the new IG name for the blog is @bloomintobeautiful. I chose this name because it's focused on the blog - not me - and if you know the story behind my blog name, then you know it's focused on Jesus. (You can read that post HERE

It's going to be a great adventure and I'm so glad to have you guys alongside of me! Let's BLOOM! 

xoxo, 

Megan 

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Confessions of a "Fashion" Blogger: It Took 500 Photos to Get This Shot


Welcome to the new series "Confessions of a 'Fashion' Blogger"! This will be a bi-weekly post on Wednesday. There will be 8 posts in this series that you can look forward to reading! It's kind of a little peek into what fashion bloggers do behind the scenes that y'all never get to see!

Do you ever find yourself scrolling through your Instagram feed and think, "Wow. That looks so perfect. They must have the most amazing life!" Yeah, I used to do that too! And then... you become one of those people who get the messages of "Wow, your life looks so perfect! I wish I could do that!" Y'all. My life (and the life of pretty much every other blogger) is far from perfect. 

This photo was strategically styled and it took around 500 photos (no lie) to get the perfect shot. I know this seems insane but it's true. Those perfect little photos you see from most bloggers on Instagram or their blog are a lot of work and there's so much thinking that actually goes into it. I'm not saying this to discourage anyone if this is something you want to someday do yourself... I'm saying this to encourage those of you who think your life is a mess just because it doesn't look like the perfectly styled photos you see on Instagram.

I love y'all so much and am so thankful that I have the opportunity (and finally have the guts) to share this type of stuff with you! Just remember one thing: Comparison is the thief of joy. Stop comparing yourself to someone's Instagram "life" and remember that you are perfect in the eyes of Jesus. He is what matters. Not the shoes, not the Starbucks + flowers, not the perfectly placed devotional time, and not the OOTD. Focus on Him and everything else will fall into place. It's not a perfect path but it's certainly worth it. :)

Monday, June 12, 2017

Why I Deleted My Instagram Account


1. It was stealing my joy.
If you know me personally, you know that I am a pretty "bubbly" person. Very rarely will you see me cry or get angry. I have a pretty timid and joyful personality - which I love to share. But it seemed like in the past six months I had let that slip away.

My days had become consumed with Instagram and all that it entails. I was spending my lunch breaks and devotion time keeping up with these "engagement" groups - which was completely exhausting - and what was it for? I literally could feel my happiness fade when I sat to plan out my posts for the week.

If you've noticed, the past few weeks to a month, I have been pretty MIA lately. The reason was that I simply wasn't finding joy in Instagram land anymore. It had become more than my fun hobby - it had become this joy-sucking "job" that I felt I had to be perfect at.

2. I was replacing my time with Jesus with "engaging".
Unless you're a blogger, you probably don't know what an engagement group is... Well, basically it's a group of bloggers that go and like/comment on each others photos to boost your engagement - which in turn gets your photo up higher in the feeds of your followers. Stupid, right? I was literally laying down at night thinking about how many photos I would have to go through and like in the morning to be "caught up" in my groups. It was exhausting. And now that I see it written down - embarrassing. 

I would spend my devotion time with Jesus - or at least half of it - engaging in these groups. My Bible had been replaced with my cell phone. It makes me sick to my stomach to think about it now. In the past three days since I've deleted this account, I have felt so free. I know you are probably rolling your eyes right now, but you don't know how it feels until you are in that situation. 
I was doing devotion in my car before work the other day - because that's all the time I was giving to Jesus - and came across this scripture in John. 

"For they loved praise from men more than praise from God."
John 12:43 CSB

I literally stopped reading. I was stunned. It was like God had slapped me across the face. I had been praying on my way to work after a conversation with my husband about all of this and felt a tug to open up my Bible when I pulled in the parking lot. He wanted me to read this exact scripture at this exact time. That's when I texted my husband with the plan I had to delete my Instagram account and that was the same day I made the announcement to y'all.

3. It was all about me and not about Him.
When you get to a certain point as a blogger, especially someone that claims to be a faith blogger, I feel like you honestly have to step back and remember that this isn't about you. Yes, you may have 50K people following you, but it's still not about you. It's about what you can do for others and what you can do for His glory - not your own personal gain. I felt like I had gotten to this point of glorifying myself or things more than I was glorifying God - on Instagram and here on the blog. This was never what I intended to do with this outlet. 

And to be honest, I feel like maybe this was why I have been kind of at this stand-still with them both. I think God was just waiting for me to step forward in faith. For me, that meant totally starting over and stepping away from this little world of Instagram for a while. If you're not a Christian, but you still want to follow along for lifestyle/fashion posts, I would love to have you here. I'm not saying that I'm going to exclude those from my new journey - but I'm going to include them in the right way. The focus will be more on Jesus and less on Megan. 

4. I was trying to be like every other blogger and not myself.
Obviously if you follow me then you probably follow other bloggers as well. If you look around, there's a pretty consistent trend going on - post about clothes 24/7, go on a shopping trip 3 times a week, liketoknow.it everything, and boomerang the heck out of your IG stories. {insert laugh/cry emoji here} Honestly, if this is your thing, there's nothing wrong with it! But it's not me. Not anymore at least. 

If you knew me about six years ago, then you know that the movie "Confessions of a Shopaholic" was probably written about me. I honestly went shopping like every day. I was obsessed with clothes, shoes, and accessories like no other. This is why my boutique thrived and it's also why I had several credit cards maxed out. 

Thank God I came out of this craze. It's honestly so sad to think back to. I would have a sale at my boutique just so I could go shop with my paycheck from it. So pathetic. Anyway, back to 2017...
I started my blog to keep up with mentoring girls back home - spiritually - and this little blog just took a turn I honestly never saw coming. I feel like God allowed this to grow and become what it is so that I could share more and reach more people. Yes, including fashion + lifestyle into this is what helped it grow but the goal was never for those topics to take over the faith aspect.

I honestly became obsessed with getting more followers, more clothes to post (so people would buy them and I would make more $$), more likes on my photos, more IG story views, and reposts from liketoknow.it - I'm so sorry, y'all. Around a month ago it was like I had stepped out of my body and saw what was going on. I was watching myself try to be like everyone else so that I could get Insta-famous. (totally can't believe I just said Insta-famous) 

5. I needed a fresh start.
Why didn't I just stop what I was doing and change the old account? That's a very valid question. I totally could have done that. But it wasn't what was right for me. I felt like I needed to detox from the blog IG for a while, take a break from posting, and make sure I was ready to start back. I am enjoying checking in on family/friends over on my personal IG account. It's something I rarely did while running the other account. 

When will I start back? When I'm ready. Until I know in my heart that I won't get sucked back into that hole... I won't be posting. I'll be right here, pouring my heart out on the world-wide-web for y'all. I've already made the new account and I'll release that to everyone when I'm ready to.

What's it going to look like? Well, if you remember back to October of 2016, I tried out this darker Instagram look. Honestly, I loved it but it was a little too dark for my personality. I have envisioned for the new account to be a mix of that with what I have been doing. Overall, I want it to be true to my personality and what I like - not what a billion other people are doing. So the answer to this question is a little fuzzy.

What will I be posting? More of Jesus and less of me. Obviously I can't literally post Jesus on my Instagram account - but I can share more about Him. I really want to capture more nature and travel to show the beauty He has blessed us with. I want to share what He shows me in my quiet time with y'all. I want to be honest. I want to be me. Of course, I'll still be posting some fashion as well, but it isn't going to consume my life anymore. If you saw on my Instagram a few weeks ago, I completely gutted my closet and simplified it. I'll be sharing about that next Monday here on the blog. I'll also be posting more "styled" photos instead of the typical mirror OOTD or the "standing in front of a colored wall in clothes I don't really like" photo. The reason I like the styled photos better - I can take them whenever I want to and save them for later, I think they look awesome, and lastly, it will help my creativity flow, which is something I love. I can't wait to take a few hours on my day off to go shoot and just get creative. :)


I just want to say thank you to everyone who has continued to follow along with me. I know I'm a little crazy - obviously, I just deleted a fairly successful IG account - but you're still here and that's awesome. I can't wait to share everything I have planned with you guys and to see what God has planned. 

Here's an idea of what's to come...
Monday's will be LIFESTYLE posts like this one. Wednesday's will be FASHION posts. I will be starting a series called "Confessions of a 'Fashion' Blogger" this Wednesday and I'm super excited for y'all to read it. Sorry to all of my fashion blogger friends... I'm going to be spilling some of our secrets... good and bad. ;) Friday's will be my FAITH days and I'm excited to see what comes from that - this Friday I will be sharing my struggle with worry and how I've learned to deal with that.

Thanks for reading!

xoxo

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Lace + Leather - The Perfect Pair














Top: Tobi c/o || Jacket: H&M (under $50!) || Denim: Topshop || Shoes: Jessica Simpson || Earrings: Kate Spade || Necklace: BaubleBar (on sale!)

Hey y'all!
This week has been pretty great so far! I'm so pumped to start writing the new content that's coming to the blog! It's all happening very soon! You're also going to notice a few changes visually here as well! I cannot wait!!! Be sure to follow along on Instagram and show some love!

Now for what you really wanna know... ;)
This lace top y'all. It's honestly beyond gorgeous! The little details make it stand out! From below the bust down, you have little peek-a-boo spots in the lace, which is so cute and breathable for summer! The color is a mix of pink and purple - which I love - and goes well with a lot of different options! Tobi has so many cute options right now! I can't wait to show you more of what I recently got from them next week!

I paired this top with a recent purchase from H&M - this killer moto jacket - that is under $50! The material feels so great and I know it's going to hold up well! Be prepared to see this baby a lot! Y'all know I gotta talk about my shoes - I mean have you seen how killer my hubby is at taking shoe pics?!  I purchased these suede babes back in January and haven't been disappointed yet! They are super comfy for walking - I wore them in NYC for NYFW and didn't get a blister! - and they go with literally everything. For accessories, I kept it simple - my favorite Kate Spade studs and this beautiful BaubleBar statement necklace - because the clothing pretty much speaks for itself!

I hope you babes have a great Wednesday + Thursday! I'll be back on Friday with why I just cut my closet down to 5% of what I had! A lot of y'all have been asking and I've got the answers for you - along with a few tips on how to do this yourself! Love y'all!

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Thursday, May 18, 2017

The Perfect OTS Lace Dress + Blog Update
















Dress: Tobi c/o || Shoes: Vince Camuto || Earrings: Kate Spade || Bracelets: Bourbon & Boweties || Bag: Rebecca Minkoff || Rings: Pandora (similar option here)

Hey y'all!
This week has been so good! I accepted a promotion at my job and have had some amazing devotion with Jesus! If you read my Instagram post here, then you got a glimpse into how I've been feeling with blogging/Instagramming here lately. It's been pretty tough. I've just felt so unmotivated due to lots of silly, little things. I came across this amazing quote while reading "Chase the Lion" by Mark Batterson that has honestly changed my attitude 100%. I can't wait to start blogging more - about what I'm passionate about - and sharing more personal stuff on Instagram. Be sure to follow along with me on Instagram - @the.mrs.mcqueen

On to the fashion ---> this dress from Tobi is gorgeous! I love the pretty lace details and the OTS style! You could also dress this down with a denim jacket! I paired it with the most killer Vince Camuto shoes ever! They are definitely a splurge but well worth it, y'all!

I love sharing my style with y'all and how I wear the new trends - but I also love sharing my faith, travel, and fitness adventures with you too. I would love to hear about some topics or any questions you want me to answer! Be sure to hop over to my Instagram and let me know! I'm ready to start doing this blogging thing a little bit more regular - you know - like a blogger or something. (insert crazy face emoji here)

Love you babes!


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Tuesday, May 9, 2017

{Almost} A College Graduate // All Black with Leopard












Top: Nordstrom || Denim: Topshop || Shoes: Posh Boutique KY c/o (under $25!!) || Necklace: Kendra Scott || Ring: Jenny Bird || Earrings: Kate Spade || Bag: Rebecca Minkoff || Watch: Daniel Wellington

Hey y'all!
This week has been a very good one! I am officially on summer break and I am prepping for a huge closet sale on Thursday! It feels so good to be starting off my summer with a clean, organized, and refreshed closet! Be sure to shop my closet sale on Thursday here!

This outfit is probably one of my new favorites! When this top showed up on the Nordstrom website I knew it had to be mine! The cute little pleat detailing is BEAUTIFUL but it's also super soft! It fits true to size! I don't even have to tell you about my denim because you all know how much I love them already. I paired these pieces with the cutest leopard sandals from Posh Boutique KY! Y'all. They are under $25. I mean... RUN RUN RUN! They are going to sell out so fast! They currently have all sizes available - don't miss out on these! I finished my look off with accessories from Kendra ScottJenny BirdKate Spade, and Rebecca Minkoff!

I just want to say thank you to all of you guys! I truly appreciate you sticking around through my "too busy to post" season and all of the transitioning I am currently going through! Y'all are the best ever! 

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Thursday, May 4, 2017

Lipstick, Lashes, and Bows: The Perfect $15 Tee + Must-Have Shoes for Spring















Top: Make Me Chic c/o || Denim: STS Denim || Shoes: Sam Edelman || Earrings: BaubleBar

Hey y'all!
Long time no blog! ;)
I have been crazy busy here lately! I just started a new job for LifeWay Christian Booksellers and also have been in the last weeks of school for the semester - finals stink! But Monday is my last day of school for the semester! Yayyyyy! So, be prepared for lots of new content here on the blog and Instagram dailies!!

Now on to the outfit details. I have been eyeing this top for quite some time now! At only $15, you honestly can't say no! It's so cute and is a dupe for a designer version that is over $50! I paired it with my favorite denim for summer! They are so comfortable and the fit perfect for a "slouchy but stylish" look! Of course we can't forget these pink bow slides that I've been living in! I'm completely obsessed, y'all. My theme of this spring: I like big bows and I cannot lie. Hah!

I'm so excited to finally be back at this blogging thing! I love y'all and am so grateful for each and every one of you! Now it's off to study for finals... and catch a view episodes of The Vampire Diaries (guilty). 

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