Fashion

You’re never fully dressed without…

I have always struggled with accessorizing. And until recently,  I would send quick pictures of my outfit every morning to my mom. I always anticipated her thumbs up on my outfit or for her to tell me what I’m missing, whether that be a necklace or different pair of shoes. I lacked the confidence because I simply didn’t know the basics of accessorizing. In the last few months, I have searched Pinterest and bloggers everywhere to find the secret to accessorizing.

Here’s what I have found..

1. Always have the perfect pair of shoes.

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I have found that I can completely botch an outfit with the wrong pair of shoes. I have learned it’s always good to have one good pair of booties, a versatile pair of wedges, ballet flat, and one trendy, fashion forward shoe (My choice for this season is the cutout peep toe bootie)

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2. Jewelry is always a must..

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I am a firm believer that jewelry can change  any outfit. For example you can take a simple white tee and pair it with a statement necklace for a professional look or change it up with a long necklace and a cardigan for a casual look. Either way, the jewelry completes both outfits and without it you just have a plain ole tee and skinnies.

If you aren’t a “jewelry kinda girl”, then try a simple stud or a simple bar necklace (you’ll be surprised how much this adds to an outfit).  I have a bar necklace similar to the one pictured that I special ordered from AllyOops Boutique. I wear it with everything and I even layer it with my long necklaces.

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3. Oh, for the love of.. SCARVES

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Okay, I know it’s hot here in Mississippi, but it is technically fall. I envy people that live in states that actually have fall breezy weather. Because let’s face it, what’s fall fashion without a plaid scarf? I love accessorizing with scarves.They are super versatile! You can make them into a vest or wear ’em with a tee and skinnies, or even a cute skirt. My favorite way to wear a scarf in this hot weather is with my hair up in a messy bun and some simple studs. It’s crazy how a scarf can complete an outfit. Check out these cute plaid scarves!

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4. Accessorizing w/ the perfect Handbag

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This is where people make their biggest accessorizing mistake: Handbags. When purchasing a handbag make sure you get a bag that is VERSATILE and that fits with your day to day style. If you are artsy and bold, go for a bright statement bag. If your classic or preppy, go for a timeless Coach or Kate Spade tote. Whatever your style, make sure your bag is versatile enough to coordinate with your wardrobe.

One of my favorite bags this fall is the Emilia Medium Medallion Bag by Brighton. This bag is available at AllyOops.  I love the timeless color, yet it’s fashion forward with the medallion detail.

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5. Bralette & Dress Extenders

It’s no secret that bralettes are this seasons go to fashion trend. I love how they add the perfect touch to any outfit. I wear my bralette with tops or dresses that have low necklines, or deep sleeve openings. Below are just a few examples of how to style a bralette. (AllyOops Boutique has a great selection of lace and stone wash bralettes)

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6. “..you’re never fully dress without a SMILE..”

No matter what you are wearing, never forget to put on your smile. You’ll be surprised how much better you feel and look.

I truly hope these accessorizing tips helped you as much as they have helped me. So go forth and conquer this world, wearing your smile of course. Okay, and maybe a good pair of shoes 😉

XOXO,

Bethany Frazier

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Fashion

Halloween: What does it mean to me?

When we lived in Madison, I loved everything about Halloween. The costumes. The candy. Everything!! Every year we would rush to party city (or the fabric store, if my mom felt crafty that year) in search for the perfect costume.  I remember me and my best friend, Hunter, dragging my mom door to door searching for all the homes with the “good” candy. We would then go home and my dad would check all the candy to make sure it was “safe” (To this day, I really think he did that just to steal our good candy. lol.) Then me and my sister would stay up on a sugar high all night. That’s what Halloween used to mean. Playing Dress up & tons and tons of candy.

But soon that all changed. *dramatic music*

We moved….to a little ole town called Puckett, MS. Okay, so I don’t know if any of you know this or not, but there is a serious shortage of houses that pass out candy in the country!! As a kid, I was seriously distraught when I realized that no one was passing out candy on Halloween night. So there I was all upset because I couldn’t dress up and go house to house…And what did my dad do?

Well,

He set up their master bathroom to be a “Johnson Halloween Festival”. He had spooky decorations and candles. Bobbing for apples in the Jacuzzi tube. And Carmel apples made specially for me. We then ate all my favorite candy and stayed up watching older (not so scary) Scary Movies. #ParentWin

After that night Halloween changed… It changed from a night that we dressed up and ran off with friends to go find the best candy, to a holiday focused on making memories with the people I love most. To this day we still celebrate Halloween, without the bobbing apples, but with scary movies and making yummy treats. So that’s what Halloween means to me. Family. Laughing till we cry. Old Movies. And of course lots of yummy treats and candy. 

***Let me know what your favorite Halloween memory/tradition is in the comments below!***

I hope you guys have a Happy Halloween!

xoxo,

Bethany

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Fashion

Artisan Spotlight: Novi Creations

Screen Shot 2017-07-05 at 11.52.25 AMMeet Shauna. Artist. Designer. Expert in all things copper. Shauna is the owner of Novi Creations. Novi Creations is a jewelry line that focuses on repurposing old, seemingly worthless material into beautiful jewelry.

We wanted y’all to get to know her and her business a little better..So we set out to ask her just a few questions. Here’s what she had to say, and we are absolutely speechless..

When and Why did you decide to start your own business? 

Novi started as a side job, raising extra money to go on mission trips or tending to the growing needs of 3 kids in a full time ministry household and quickly became a jewelry making business based out of (and still is) my in home studio…AKA dining room, in order to continue to be at home with my children.  Would you believe I said I would never make jewelry!? “It is an inundated industry”… so, here I am, making jewelry.  Jewelry that has a story and reflects my life and style – unique and new.   Although I am the jewelry designer and creator, Novi couldn’t exist without my husband who now, not only serves as a Navy Chaplain, but finds time to take the pictures, create and build display and set designs and do a little marketing. We are definitely a team.

Why Novi, what does it mean? 

I love second looks and second chances. I believe with proper care and nurture there is hope for everyone and everything. Too often life quietly passes by, waiting for someone discover it’s potential. Whether it is discarded materials or discarded people, we all need someone who is willing to look beyond the obvious and dare to see what could be. Someone who lingers when everyone else has walked away.

In my art and jewelry I am constantly trying to capture this vision. Whether repurposed or recycled, I try hard to capture and celebrates the uniqueness of each piece. 

True value comes when we understand what it was once like to be discarded..”I was dead and of no value.  But God, rich in mercy made me alive, new, full of life in Christ Jesus.”  Ephesians 2:1-9

Hence, “Novi”, an old bohemian word meaning “new”.  It’s the story of my life as well as the jewelry I create.

Why do you choose to repurpose and recycle your materials? 

I happened upon a fair trade sari silk company when I first started designing. I loved the life giving opportunities these purchases brought as well as the unique textures they add to my designs.  Now both recycled silks as well as other natural elemants are used in my creations. 

What’s your favorite design? 

The exciting new design idea, Gypsy Ribbon, was actually my husbands. And would now be considered my favorite! Inspired by our love for travel and keeping with the heart and style of Novi, each Gypsy Ribbon bracelet reflects the textures and colors of our National Parks. Seven bracelets in one, these wraps feature hand cut leathers, natural copper, fair trade sari silks, and earthy gemstones combined in single strands and joined with strong yet beautiful snap clasps to create a layered look. Each strand can also be worn separately for the simple style and some Gypsy Ribbon bracelet designs can also be doubled as necklaces as well. Hence our slogan for Novi’s newest line, “Gypsy Ribbon. An interchangeable design for every occasion.”

Fashion

Bridgewater Candles: Why they’re my favorite.

“They don’t only smell good, they do good.” Maybe that’s not the best catch phrase, but it’s my favorite. And I use it all the time. When I see a customer looking at the Bridgewater Candles, I have to admit, I jump on the opportunity to share what this company is doing in the world. It excites me to know that a company like Bridgewater chooses to give back and be a light for so many in this dark world.

Okay, so what am I talking about?

Screen Shot 2017-05-24 at 10.06.22 AMThe Light a Candle + Feed a Child Program was created when the people at Bridgewater Candle Co. recognized the steady growth of orphaned children world wide; however, what really created the urgency to help was seeing the numbers of deaths due to malnutrition and starvation. Bridgewater wanted to educated the public and raise awareness for this world wide orphan crisis. But most importantly, they wanted to help save lives. That’s when they partnered with the Rice Bowl Foundation. Through this foundation, with every candle purchased, a child is feed overseas.

How exactly does this work?

  1. Buy a candle from the Small & Large Jar Collection, Mingle Tin Collection, or Sweet Grace Collection.
  2. They provide 3 meals for every candle purchased.

We take so much for granted. As I sit here drinking my coffee and typing this, I think of how easy and accessible food is. But I have to remind myself to be grateful because for some it’s not that easy. That’s why I love sharing what this company is doing. I recognize the need and urgency and I want to help Bridgewater share and educate people on this worldwide crisis. Since this program started millions of children have been able to go to bed with full bellies and happy hearts.

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XOXO,

Bethany

Feel free to share with friends and family. ❤

 

**All pictures from Bridgewater Candle Co.**

 

Fashion

Good Things #8 & 9

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#8 I have so many good things to be thankful for. They are everywhere.  As I worked from home yesterday I sat in my dining room and watched a multitude of beautiful birds, squirrels and bunnies play in my front yard. It was a pretty sight to see. Later, on a walk with the dog, I saw a flock of geese flying overhead. They are loud birds but very graceful and interesting to watch flying in formation. As I walked along I could smell the magnolias in the trees and I noticed all the wild black berries beginning to grow bright red. God’s creation is a beautiful good thing. Yesterday was a reminder to slow down a little and take life in, it’s happening all around me.

#9 Today, Bethany and I took a quick road trip to a meeting about a project we have in the works. It was a nice ride and a beautiful day. I left the meeting feeling positive and with quite a bit more work to do. But overall it was a really good meeting that hopefully will lead to good things to share. Since we were on the road, I splurged and enjoyed a Ward’s burger and root beer. You just can not match the Ward’s root beer, I don’t know how they do it but it is amazing!

Another good thing about today is that we had online orders to mail! We have been working on this website for a long time and it is finally looking like we imagined. Check it out later in the week for new arrivals allyoops.com.

A really good thing happened later in the day, Bethany decided she wanted to learn how to sew. We bought her a pattern and some cute summer plaid shirting material. It will be fun to work with her on the project. My MawMaw taught me to sew when I was really young. Some of my best memories are sewing with her. Anytime we needed clothes or just about anything that could be sewn, we would have sewing “marathons” as we called them. I would be cutting and she would be sewing and vice versa.

Rick met us for dinner at an old favorite place, Fratesi’s. The service and food is always so good. We talked, laughed and recounted the days events.

Today was such a good thing! I loved every moment of it. I hope your day was filled with good things.

#goodthings

Ally

Fashion

Good Things #7

Today was a day filled with good things. I pray that all the moms out there had a wonderful day too.

My day began with a big cup of my favorite coffee, Dunkin Donuts Chocolate Glaze Donut flavor, compliments of Ricky. Then a quick trip to Laurel with Caitlin to go to church with my Maw Maw. We meant to surprise her and I think we were successful. I enjoyed being with her this morning. She has taught me so much and played a huge role in the shaping of my life.20170514_095030

 

I really enjoyed the church service and singing the old hymns. They also had all the men sing in the choir and it was lovely. I loved listening to my dad and Paw Paw sing.

After church I went somewhere I rarely go. I went to my mom’s grave site. I really don’t like to go. My mom is not really there. But all the ladies were given roses at church and I had the thought that I would take mine to my mom. I left the rose and a penny by the headstone. Caitlin left her rose at the grave of my step mother, Mary Nell.

The last couple of weeks leading up to Mother’s Day this year have been difficult for me. I have missed my mom so very much and just longed to listen to her voice.  For peace I have prayed this scripture, May the God of hope fill ME with all joy and peace as I trust in him, so that I may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13. Maybe this scripture will help someone else out there that may need peace that only Jesus can give.

As we were leaving town we took a ride through the neighborhood where we used to live.  We drove by my mom’s old home and our old home. We drove through downtown to take a quick look at all the changes taking place. My mom would be so happy and proud to see it all.

When we got home, Bethany and Jonathan came by to visit.  They brought me a gift. It is a beautiful sweet olive or “tea olive” tree.  This is one of my favorite shrubs, it reminds me of my mom. They even planted it for me. It was a very thoughtful and beautiful gift.20170514_172408

We all visited a while and watched a little television. Then I had a nice phone conversation with my Julia, my mother-in-law. It was really nice to talk with her.20170514_175645

I ended the day with a big bowl of watermelon, one of my favorite snacks.

It just doesn’t get much better than this. Life is a good thing.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Ally

Fashion

Good Things #5 & 6

So here are a few good things that happened the last couple of days. Friday night we finally got to eat at Half Shell. Every time we have gone to eat there in the past the wait was too long, but Friday night we decided to wait it out and it was pretty good.

This morning as I pulled into the store parking lot I saw both my daughters cars parked side by side. It always makes my heart happy on the days I see them both there. Even though we sometimes anoy each other I absolutely love working with them.

Tonight, after a long day at the store selling and wrapping up gifts, we went to eat at Mud Bugs. The whole family went and it was nice to just sit, eat shrimp, and listen to the great music playing. The performance tonight was by Chad Wesley Band.

And finally a really great thing that happened tonight, I came home to a wonderfully clean house. Rick spent his entire day cleaning the house. It looked and smelled wonderful. Thank you, Ricky.

Ally

 

 

Fashion

Good Things #4

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Having a best friend is a really good thing, a really great thing actually. Today my best friend, Lisa, sent me a “vintage” workout video I had been looking for. It is a VHS and those are sometimes hard to find. My video got eaten by the VCR some time ago and during recent visit with Lisa, I was telling her how great it was and that I wished I had another one. She found it online and bought it for me, how thoughtful and sweet.  We got to chat a little on the phone today and that is always a good thing.

Today was very productive in the store front. A day that began slow, probably because many people were out shopping at Canton Flea Market, ended busy and that is a good thing. I made progress on my special projects. I have some meetings set up next week and after I see how that turns out, I might be inclined to share a little more about what I have in the works.

I did something I normally don’t do, sometimes it is a good thing to break up your routine or habits. Usually once I get to the store I don’t leave until it is time to go home for the day, but today I took a break from working and ran over to the new farmers market with Caitlin. Doris Berry’s Farmers Market just opened a new location in town and I had to check it out. We bought a nice looking assortment of yummy veggies. For tonight dinner is steak and peppers, fresh tomatoes and cucumbers (so good). If you are local you should check it out, really great service and veggies.

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Today was pretty ordinary, just a lot of little good things. It reminds me of a sign we have in the store “Enjoy the gift of this ordinary day”. I wrote a paper in college about ordinary days. I will have to share it with you some time. Ordinary days are a good thing!

Ally

 

 

Fashion

Good Things #3

Okay, so today I have a REALLY good thing to share. If you are a teacher you will completely get it, Caitlin’s class scores came in and all of them passed! Her first full year of teaching is a success! She is proud of her students and I am so proud of her!

Another good thing I enjoyed today was working with Bethany. It is really cool to share a passion for the business with her. She puts so much of her heart into it. I am really hard on her and try to make sure she “pays her dues” like I did in the retail world, but she takes it like a champ (most days).

I also began working on some really neat projects that I will share more about over the next few months.

Finally, as I share with you just a few good things everyday, a scripture keeps coming to mind. It is Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Sometimes the good is hard to see in the moment or is not realized until the moment is long over.  God has taken some really big messes in my life and somehow worked them together for good beyond my comprehension. And He also blesses me daily with a bunch of good things big and small. I know He does the same for you too! Please comment with a good thing in your life and #goodthings!

Ally

 

 

 

 

Fashion

Good Things #2

20170509_123942.jpgSo thankful for today!

It was really nice to see the Business of the Month sign from the Pearl Chamber in front of the store today. It is such an honor to serve the community doing something I love.

I enjoyed a pedicure. After several long days and late nights of working the relaxation time was much needed.  The girls came with me and even though we were tired and did not chat or laugh as much as we normally do, spending the time together was good.

What was especially good about today was watching my two daughters friendship as young women grow.  After our pedicure they went out to eat dinner, just the two of them, since I had to get home. I pray they continue to grow closer and share in each others lives.

I enjoyed home-grown potatoes and tomatoes for dinner, a nice walk with the dog afterwards, and finally a very competitive game of scrabble and backgammon with the hubby.

Listening to the crickets tonight as I write this, just another good thing. 🙂

These were just a few of the good things today. Thank you Lord!

Ally

 

 

 

Fashion

Good Things #1

So thankful for this weekend, though exhausting, worth all the efforts. We had our first vendor booth for AllyOops Boutique at the Mercantile Mississippi Event in Jackson MS.

I had so much fun working along side my husband, daughters and the AllyOops team to make this weekend a success. Everyone played their part in rockin’ it and pulling off the best first show ever! Whether you worked the store or the booth you all did a great job. This weekend was successful for so many reasons.  Our booth was busy most of the weekend and we are so thankful for all those who shopped with us and shopped “local”.

But even if we had not made a single sale, the weekend would have still been a success. It was a valuable learning experience. We met so many new friends and got to share a littler version of our store with them. We saw several familiar faces and got to visit with them. I gained a renewed energy and focus on our business. And we picked up many new lines of Mississippi made products that we can’t wait to share with you in the coming months.

So many good things to be thankful for!

Ally