Fashion Meets Passion

Maya Angelou once said, “My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”

Those are such great words to live by. If we could all adopt this mentality our world would certainly be a much nicer place to live. I feel as though I already incorporate humor and style into my life and find myself compassionate about many things. Oftentimes our compassion leads us to our passion. Such is the reason for today’s post!

Lilly is no stranger to The Stylish Steed website. My god-daughter, Lilly, is a spirited and talented eight year old with spunk, sass, and stop-you-in-your-tracks eye rolls. She loves running track, looking sharp, entertaining a crowd of any size, and anything related to music. Other than running, she’s a lot like her Uncle Chad. I couldn’t love her more if she were my own flesh and blood!

Chad and Lilly

Lilly is very special…and not just to me! Lilly has a genetic disorder called Marfan syndrome, a disorder that affects the body’s connective tissue.  Connective tissue holds all the body’s cells, organs, and tissue together. It also plays an important role in helping the body grow and develop properly. It’s kind of like pantyhose…it keeps everything where it should be. Lilly’s “pantyhose” are a little stretched out though, so they don’t hold things together as well as they should.

About 1 in 5,000 people have Marfan syndrome, including men and women of all races and ethnic groups. About 3 out of 4 people with Marfan syndrome inherit it, meaning they get the genetic mutation from a parent who has it. But some people with Marfan syndrome are the first in their family to have it; when this happens it is called a spontaneous mutation.

Like all individuals with Marfan syndrome, Lilly was born with it. Some people have a lot of Marfan features at birth or as young children – including serious conditions like aortic enlargement while others have fewer features when they are young and don’t develop aortic enlargement or other signs of Marfan syndrome until they are adults. Some features of Marfan syndrome, like those affecting the heart and blood vessels, bones or joints, can get worse over time. Marfan syndrome affects Lilly the most in her heart and vision. She makes regular visits to her cardiologist and updates her glasses frequently as her vision progressively deteriorates over time.

We were very lucky that a doctor knew about this rare disorder and spotted symptoms in Lilly at a very early age. Without early diagnosis and treatment, individuals with Marfan syndrome can be at risk for potentially life-threatening complications. The earlier some treatments are started, the better the outcomes are likely to be. We are extremely blessed and thankful for the early diagnosis that Lilly received.

It is through this diagnosis and continual doctor visits that Lilly and her family have become active with The Marfan Foundation. Throughout the year she meets with others affected by Marfan for support, to raise awareness through events, and to raise funds for The Marfan Foundation.

The Marfan chapter of which Lilly is involved is celebrating Marfan Awareness Month (February) and preparing for the Walk to Victory, a fundraising event that supports The Marfan Foundation research. Lilly and her involvement with The Marfan Foundation has become a passion for her entire family. It is because of that passion that Team Lilly and The Stylish Steed are partnering up to raise money and awareness of Marfan syndrome during the month of February. Beginning today, February 1, and extending through Monday, February 28, The Stylish Steed will be giving 100% of the profits from the sale of Stylish Steed Signature T-Shirts purchased to The Marfan Foundation in honor of Team Lilly! Take heart and do your part!

Simply visit The Stylish Steed online store and purchase yours today using the checkout code LILLY. Team Lilly and The Stylish Steed are excited about this partnership and can’t wait to see how great a donation she’ll be able to contribute because of your help!

Not only are you sharing in helping Lilly’s passion, but you’re also doing something else that Lilly loves….staying stylish!

The Ultimate Flea Market Find

Guess what??? I’M BACK!!!!

It’s been quite a while since The Stylish Steed has last posted. Oh, how I’ve missed you all! Let me catch you up on a few things that happened during my absence!

During summer 2015 I had a wonderful experience debuting with a nearby theatre group. My summer as Curly from Oklahoma! was an absolutely exciting (but time consuming) opportunity. Quickly following that production I had the opportunity to perform in another great show, Greater Tuna, with a very talented actor. He and I played some 20+ characters and had an amazing time and developed a wonderful new friendship.

Oklahoma!

Aunt Eller and Curly in Theatre of Gadsden’s production of Oklahoma!

I had a blast in St. Simon’s Island, Georgia at the wedding of one of my best friends. Rebekah, from Some Kinda Good, married her sweetheart in a beautiful ceremony under the Spanish moss at Epworth by the Sea. It was a great time in a beautiful area that is dear to my heart.

Lingenfelser Wedding

The blissful bride, Rebekah, with the groomsmen

I did a little traveling, spent some time with family and friends, and kind of muddled through life. It was during all this busyness that I didn’t really have a desire to write. If I had some fun information I wanted to share, I simply couldn’t find the ambition to get up and do it. I was not on the mountaintop of life. For lack of better words, I lost my voice with my blog.

Fast forward to today…January 2016!

During a recent trip to Los Angeles with my mom I had a week long stay that relaxed and rejuvenated me! I spent almost an entire Sunday in the parking lot of Fairfax High School. On the corner of Melrose and Fairfax there is an amazing cultural/creative/culinary/musical event that happens every Sunday offered by Melrose Trading Post (MTP). MTP is operated by Greenway Arts Alliance, a community-based nonprofit organization whose mission is to unite communities through art, education and enterprise. Every Sunday, 4,000-5,000 people visit Melrose Trading Post, which is consistently listed as a top Los Angeles destination stop by numerous tourist websites and featured in publications and media all over the world. If you’re lucky you may even have a celebrity spotting!

MTP Collage

You can find absolutely everything at MTP! Vintage clothing/accessories, furniture, custom jewelry, clothing from aspiring designers, dining via local food trucks/restaurants, a music area complete with mats for relaxing…you name it, it’s there!

As I wandered the aisles of MTP I saw so many people from different walks of life displaying their curated goods for the masses to purchase. As I browsed their booths I saw the starving artists, the free spirited, the eco-friendly, the preppy guy, the left-over flower child, and the list goes on. All of them so different to the eye, yet deep down they were just alike. They were all alike because of their passion.

As I spoke to many of the booth owners they talked about their vision for custom designs, their desire to provide unique and quality items, and their excitement and zeal for what they were doing. Many had left salaried jobs with benefits to sell their “dreams” to others. They were driven by their passion.

Among the favorites of my flea market finds were a jacket from two gentlemen selling vintage pieces and a bracelet from Goat and Kettle.

My wool jacket was a sight for sore eyes. This vintage wool army jacket was constructed in 1944 ON MY BIRTHDAY….what are the odds?!?! It has quite the history with it and is a beautiful piece that I absolutely adore.

Military Jacket

A recent Instagram post showcasing my military jacket!

Goat and Kettle offers stunning jewelry and accessory pieces hand-forged from antique keys & hardware. The keys used in the designs are from all over the country and have been used to unlock antique padlocks & steamer trunks, open clocks & cabinet doors, secure old cash registers & bank boxes…and now they’ve been fashionably repurposed.

Goat and Kettle Collage

With bracelets (left) and rings (right) that feature various styles of keys, it’s hard to find the perfect one. I am in love with mine (center) and wear it almost daily!

And even though I love all my treasures from the “Fairfax Flea Market,” my ultimate find that day was my voice. The passion that was exhibited by all the sellers reminded me why I started The Stylish Steed. The lust for life that I saw in each booth owner reignited in me the drive and excitement to produce content on The Stylish Steed website. You see, I had entered one of those “valleys” in life and had lost my gumption. However, sometimes those valleys can be good for us if we turn them into Valleys of Vision. Oftentimes, it’s in the valley that we receive our eyes and begin to turn disappointments into His appointments. So get ready folks! It’s going to be a Sweet ’16 filled with lots of exciting things from yours truly to help you stay informed, stay entertained, and stay stylish!

Don We Now…our Stylish Steed Apparel 

Mother Nature has brought in the heat and it’s not leaving anytime soon. Always making the best of any situation, I am so excited to offer you a stylish way the combat that summer sizzle. I am proud to announce the launch of The Stylish Steed Signature T-Shirt!

With these Comfort Color crew neck tees, you’ll be ready for any summer shindig. I have thoughtfully selected three great summer colors that will have you popping and on point! You can purchase yours today for only $15 and you’ll be sure to stay stylish ALL summer long! 

Here’s to a fantastic summer with sweet tea mornings and lemonade afternoons.  

JUMP into a Summer Evening

Summer is always a bustling time filled with events and activities. The warmer weather always brings these weddings, parties, and social events outdoors. With all these festivities planned (and the oftentimes unbearable heat) it’s difficult for a gal to look her best. Fret not, though, because this year is the perfect time for you to jump into a summer evening. Put that LBD (Little Black Dress) away and reach for the jumpsuit. Summer 2015 brings about the jumpsuit as the new cocktail dress. This is an awesome throwback item that is attractive on most all body types.

There are so many styles and options that it’s easy for you to find the perfect fit. I’ve gathered a few looks together in four different categories to help you get a jump on your shopping. All of the looks in the photos come from H&M, Zara, and Forever 21.

Jumpsuit 3

Going for a simple look with a dramatic flair? These sleek and sleeved options bring boldness with their solid color, but remain streamlined and sexy while keeping your arms covered.

Jumpsuit 2

Kicking it up a notch from the monochromatic look, these cut-out and sheer details add another level of sass. A tasteful appearance of skin add appropriate sex appeal for any age, but still allows you to be a lady.

Jumpsuit 4

If the thought of a jumpsuit isn’t completely jumping out at you, consider one of these options with full legs. You have the look of a maxi dress, but the comfort and style of the jumpsuit. The flowing legs will definitely add a flirty detail to those summer evenings.

Jumpsuit 1

If you are wanting to make the ultimate summer impact, take a huge leap and try your hand at a printed jumpsuit. With a multitude of prints and patterns, you can find the perfect look that fits your personality.

Whether you have a casual evening with friends for a patio party or a swanky cocktail hour at the yacht club, jump full speed ahead and make a splash with this hot summer must have. You can rock it as is or even layer your look with a cardigan or blazer for a completely different look. Also remember that hemlines can easily be altered. If you aren’t six foot tall and a size 2, who cares…have yours hemmed to give the illusion of height. Make it work to fit your style and boy type.

Regardless of how you jump into it, this sizzling piece will definitely keep your summer appearances hopping as you beat the heat to stay stylish!

 

 

 

A SUCKER for the Season

With the celebration of freedom during Memorial Day weekend, we also welcome the warmth of summer. I know that the first official day of summer isn’t until June 21, but something about Memorial Day just brings the image of summertime. As the daylight hours get longer, the lemonade gets colder, and outdoor adventures get more frequent, summer is such a fun time of the year…it’s kinda like Christmas, with a tan!

As you are attending all your fun festivities of the season, you want to make sure that you find yourself in the Kings Court of the Season…The House of SEERSUCKER! Not just for slow talkin’, southern politicians anymore, seersucker is available in a variety of pieces that make it easy to incorporate it into your warm weather wardrobe. Not to leave you hanging, I have come up with some inspiration pieces to get you started.

Ladies, you have tons of opportunities to bring the King into your looks.

TSS Women's Seersucker

From dresses to jackets and anything in between, you can effortlessly embody the traditional southern image.

  • Look fun and flirty in a great strapless number from Old Navy. Paired with a white denim jacket, this is the perfect casual and classy look that would have you ready for any evening shindig.
  • Straying away from the traditional blue seersucker, a tan print cropped pant is an essential summer item to pair with anything from a t-shirt to a gauzy top.
  • For a completely casual look, pair a utility style jacket with a pair of shorts in a pop of color like green or coral.
  • A seersucker skirt with an eyelet overlay gives a dramatic look of texture and pattern without being too fussy.
  • A classic cut long sleeve button up in a colored seersucker is cool and casual and compliments anything from white, denim, or a bold color.
  • For a dressier look, don a more structured blazer with a simple top and a great chino. This look is even suitable for summer casual wear to the office.

Gentlemen, I haven’t forgotten about you either! The quintessential fabric of any southern gentleman, seersucker is the denim of the summer. Pair it with anything, and dress it up or down.

TSS Men's Seersucker

Cool and breathable, you’ll definitely be a dapper dandy by incorporating any of these great items into your looks.

  • Attending a wedding? A dressier summer soiree? Or just want to turn up for cocktails and dinner? A seersucker blazer has you covered. If you’re feeling froggy, go ahead and buy an entire seersucker suit so you can mix and match all season long.
  • Fun and festive, these two color seersucker shorts are the perfect piece for summer outings. Pair with a t-shirt for a casual look, or a white button up for a more classic feel.
  • Found in a variety of color options, this slim fit long sleeve button up could easily become a weekend go-to. Whether you join it with shorts, chinos, or denim, this shirt can take you from morning adventures to evening outings.
  • Every girl’s crazy ’bout a sharp dressed man! This suit vest is a sleek and polished look for an alternative dressier look. A simple white button up and almost any color chino will complete this outfit with ease. Throw on a bow tie and you’ll be the beau of the ball.
  • Summer is the perfect time to experiment with more graphic looks like these seersucker pants with embroidered details. I mean, what goes better with seersucker than glasses of lemonade.
  • Tie one on this summer with a slim cut seersucker tie. A perfect addition to your favorite jeans and a button up, add a touch of southern prep to an otherwise simple outfit.

So whether you’re headed to the pier for a day of sunshine or rubbing elbows with old money at an evening event, these affordable seersucker options will definitely keep you in the KINGS court during the heated season. Take this warm weather time to add some classic seersucker to your wardrobe. Even in the humid heat of summer, being a SUCKER for the season is a sure way for you to stay stylish!