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Forever Grateful: Lessons I’ve Learned This Past Year

ISSABIRTHDAYCELEBRATION and all I want to do is reflect on the lessons i’ve learned this past year

Y’all, I am a whole year older, a new year wiser and a new year happier. There is only one word that comes to mind today and that word is GRATEFUL! I am grateful for my life, I am grateful for my family, I am grateful for my friends and I am grateful for all of you! All I want to do is throw a dance party and praise God for all of His many blessings, love, protection and favor. As I reflect on the lessons i’ve learned this past year I am overwhelmed by how much i’ve grown, become more focused and learned to take things in stride. In this post I want to share with you the five lessons i’ve learned this past year of my life and I hope it helps you in some way.

lessons I've learned this past year

 

Here are the five lessons I’ve learned this past year and I’ll use my name FUNMI as an acronym:

  1. Focus on the Good: There are so many things that point you to the bad and teaches you to focus on what’s wrong with your life, but you have to train your mind to focus on the good all the time. The bad in your life that you don’t like, fix it if it can be fixed but don’t fixate on it. Allow the good to be on the forefront of your mind. Philippians 4:8 says that “whatever things are lovely, whatever things are pure, whatever things are of good report, that’s what you meditate on.” So, remind yourself that you are an AMAZING human and worthy of love, success and happiness.
  2. Understand Yourself: No one will know you better than you know you. I took this year out to find myself, to find out what I wanted to do with my life and figure out how I was going to make it happen. It doesn’t matter what age you are, introspection can happen at any time. So, find yourself, find your dream, find your purpose and everything else will fall into place.
  3. Never Give Up: You don’t know how many times this year I wanted to give up on this whole blogging endeavor. I am two years into this experience and sometimes I get so bogged down with the lack of “progress” that I just want to quit. But, I keep telling myself that someone else’s trajectory is not my trajectory; someone’s path is not my path. I have to remember lesson number one and focus on the good and that keeps me from giving up. Whether it’s your job, your husband, your friends, your dream, DON’T GIVE UP… success is right around the corner.
  4. Make Time For Family: In this world of busyness and Boss moves, we have to remember friends and family. We have to remember the people that helped us get where we are now. This one lesson I’ve learned this past year is very important! I have a one-year-old son and I have to make a choice to focus on him. I’m also married, and in the middle of all the whirlwind of my day, I have to make time to focus on him. We can’t win in the business, education or our sphere of influence and lose our families and friends in the process. Make time for what’s truly important.
  5. Influence Others: The best lesson I’ve learned this year is to influence those around me. I am just starting out in my journey in life with my baby, my husband and my blog but there is someone that needs what I have to offer. I try and use my influence for good and be an open book and an open door. If anyone needs help, advice or prayer, I’m always there to help. Real talk, the more you pour into others, the more you get out of it…SO GIVE OF YOURSELF SELFLESSLY!

lessons I've learned this past year

It’s a new year for me and these lessons I’ve learned this past year will go into 2018 with me. I will focus on the good, ignore the bad and love the ones who love me back. I plan on spending my birthday with my husband in Las Vegas for a couple of days and then coming back and hugging my son until he gets tired of me. I am so grateful to see another year and again, I am grateful for each and everyone of you who come week after week to read, comment and love on my blog and on me. You keep me going. Thank you!

Now that I’ve given you the five lessons I’ve learned this past year, I hope you’ll be able to take them into 2018 with you as well. My look today is very elegant and the color is perfect for the holidays and for my BURFDAY! I wanted to be elegant and dramatic. The skirt is Badgley Mischka from Dillards Department Store and my blouse was especially made by my friends and visionary Derek D’eandre. My heels are from Macy’s Department store. I hope you enjoyed this post and this look. Check out my last post on my favorite faux furs for this winter season HERE.

Hope y’all have a wonderful weekend. For collaborations email me at houseofodarablog@gmail.com and find me on Instagram at Oluwafunmifly to see all the behind-the-scenes Vegas shenanigans.

loveyou.meanit 

Afordablefits

Thrifting 101: How I Styled My Thrifted Sweater

thrifting 101: how i styled my sweater two ways

“Thrifting 101 should be a pre-requisite for any fashion lover, stylist and shopaholic”

I’ve actually posted about how to be a thrifting queen before but the post was so popular I wanted to do it again. This post is called Thrifting 101 because I want to show you that thrifting is not gross or scary. When I first started thrifting, I hated the smell and the disorder, but now, I thrive in it because I know in the middle of that old-lady-smell and the clutter, treasures are awaiting me. So, let me tell you my 5 thrifting secrets that have worked for me these past two years.

The first rule of Thrifting 101 is to GO WITH AN OPEN MIND! This is NOT Saks Fifth or even Ross Dress for Less, so don’t expect neat, orderly and even clean (LOL)! Be ready to push clothes and people out of the way as you dig for the good stuff. The second rule of Thrifting 101 is to CARVE OUT TIME TO LOOK. You have to give yourself enough time to go down each aisle and look like someone told you there was a YSL sweater in the pile. Also, look at the schedule because most thrift stores have half-off days and percentages off different color tags. You cannot be in a rush to get in and get out…take the kids to your mum, free those hands, carry a small bag and get to WERK boo. This sweater I’m blogging was found at the Salvation Army in Hoover Alabama and after looking for 15 minutes I found it and did a little dance because it was worth the time.

Thrifting 101: How I styled my sweater two-ways

thrifting 101: how i styled my sweater two waysthrifting 101: how i styled my sweater two waysthrifting 101: how I styled my sweater two ways

The third rule of Thrifting 101 is to TRY EVERYTHING ON! So, I have yet to find a thrift store that allows you to return something because it doesn’t fit, so take the time and try it on. You can put it on over your clothes if you are worried about trying it on before you wash it, but make sure you know it fits BEFORE you take it home. This takes me to my fourth rule of thrifting, WASH/DRY CLEAN EVERYTHING AFTER YOU GET HOME. Side note: read the instructions on washing directions before you clean. My cousin bought a 100% silk shirt but didn’t realize the gold she had found so she washed and ruined it. So, make sure to read and find out what material your treasure is made of before you proceed.

Last rule for Thrifting 101 is TAKE A FRIEND! Two eyes are always better than one, so grab a girlfriend and put her to work. FYI also take hand sanitizer…i’m a mini germ freak so I always keep some in my purse. Now, i’ve styled my beautiful multi-colored knit sweater two ways. The first way is as a dress with a thick belt and thigh-high boots and the second way is as my color pop over a monochromatic look. I absolutely love this knit and it’s versatility and because I found it for less less than a Chick-fil-a sandwich. I hope these five rules help you in some way. Google thrift stores near you and take a field trip to one or two, you won’t be disappointed.

For gift ideas for men this holiday season, check out my last blog post HERE!

For collaborations and inquiries, please email me at houseofodarablog@gmail.com. 

Love you.Mean it

 

Afordablefits

Trenched: My Three Favorite Trench Coats this Fall


“My three favorite trench coats this fall should be on your holiday wish list to Santa”

I’ve celebrated a three year wedding anniversary and the first birthday of my son…so November has been very BUSY so far. Forgive me for not blogging as much as usual. Thank you again to everyone that takes the time to read, comment and show me love weekly, I appreciate you (virtual hugs all around). I am absolutely loving this fall weather and fashion and this post is all about my three favorite trench coats this Fall. Let’s get into it and hopefully you see something you have to have.

When buying a trench coat, the first thing I look for is color. I worry about how it fits AFTER I find the color i’m looking for. The first of my three favorite trench coats this fall is a pure white or  cream long trench. I usually try and look for a cream wool coat because it fits so well with so many outfits. The one i’m wearing in this blog is a cream wool coat I fought for at a thrift store. The second thing I look for is fit. Is the trench long enough? Does it look too baggy or does it fit me comfortably? Can I move my arms during worship or is it too tight? When I answer all this, I move on to the next hurdle…PRICE.

five favorite trench coats this fall

Here are my three favorite trench coats this fall: CLICK LINK TO PURCHASE
my three favorite trench coats this fallmy three favorite trench coats this fallmy three favorite trench coats this fall

my three favorite trench coats this fall
When it comes to price, be ready to spend a little more. I usually go for a wool-blend trench coat because they tend to be less expensive but still beautiful and functional. You want this coat to last a long time so go for quality (be ready to spend money). These are my three favorite trench coats this fall and they are each worth the price tag.

my three favorite trench coats this fallmy three favorite trench coats this fall

 

my three favorite trench coats this fall

 

 

 

 

 

 

My shirt, pants, purse and sunnies are all from H&MMy boots are linked above for purchase. Don’t forget to check out my last post with my favorite gifts for men this holiday season: HERE 

Email me at houseofodarablog@gmail.com to collaborate and find me on IG at Oluwafunmifly.

Love you.Mean It

Afordablefits

SKY-HIGH-THIGH-HIGH BOOTS

“Thigh-highs are like gloves for the legs…they keep them nice and cozy”

How do you wear sky-high-thigh-high boots without looking like you’re on your way to your night job as a featured dancer?! hahaha! Well, let me tell you how in this wonderful piece i’m calling sky-high-thigh-highs. Thigh-high boots are not only a great fall trend, but they are functional and actually serve a purpose. I love them because when I wear a short skirt, dress or shorts in the fall, they keep my legs warm and give me some modesty. Growing up with a Nigerian mum, having your legs, thighs or décolletage out was the mortal sin (Chai, hell fire awaits you daughter).

Do not be afraid of the thigh high trend. It’s actually a fun and sexy way to be both warm and fashionable. The problem a lot of us thicker-legged women run into is that sky-high-thigh-high boots never fit over our calf muscles and juicy juicy yams. Well that is why the Lycra boot is going to be your BFF.

sky-high-thigh-high boots

CLICK ON LINK TO PURCHASE

Studded Faux Leather Jacket

These red sky-high-thigh-high boots have been so popular because not only do they stretch to the GAWDS, but they come in some really beautiful colors. I’ve never found boots that zip all the way up and cover my whole dark-meat legs. But, these ones just slid right on up with ease and they actually feel good on your bare legs. If you don’t have a pair of lycra boots in your shoe arsenal….GET YOU SOME BOO!!!! 

Now that you see how I rocked my sky-high-thigh-high lycra boots, how would you have worn them. Let me know what you think about this trend, if you would ever be caught dead in thigh-high boots or if you already own several of them. Like I said, for my thick girls, stretch thigh-high boots are going to be your best friend all season long so invest in a good pair of them. If you missed the last post on how to channel jealousy into motivation, click HERE to read it.

GIVEAWAY TIME ON INSTAGRAM: FIND ME AT OLUWAFUNMIFLY, FOLLOW, TAG A FRIEND AND ENTER TO WIN THE BUCKET BAG I WORE IN THIS POST HERE. GIVEAWAYS END FRIDAY

If you would like to collaborate or need styling for a big event, email me at houseofodarablog@gmail.com

Afordablefits

Mix-It-Up

“I love a woman that knows how to mix prints like a BAWSE!”

Have you ever tried to mix prints, pattern and textures and just given up because it was too hard? This blog post is just for you. We will be talking about how to mix prints, and textures without looking like a clown. You may not be a fan of this trend, but it is here to stay and will definitely have you looking like a style pro…so give it a try and mix it up. Here are my 5 go-to rules on how to mix prints like a BOSS:

  1. Find prints with one or two common colors
  2. Find a pattern that super busy and one that is a little less busy
  3. Find items with a common background color: either light or dark background
  4. Pastel prints mixed together is an easy go-to look
  5. stripes and florals or stripes and stripes are always a YES

how to mix prints

In these pictures you’ll see celebrities from Solange to Blake Lively slaying and showing us how to wear mixed prints. All of them follow these simple five rules and they come out looking like they stepped right out of the pages of Vogue magazine (fyi: some of them probably did). This trend is not hard. I want you to give it a try and see how fun playing with prints can really be.

how to mix prints like a pro

My look today is a nod to the mixed print trend. I paired a printed peplum blouse with a textured bottom and ended up with this amazing and chic look. My shirt is going to be in my collection ShakaraFAB that will be available next summer for purchase. The pants are from Dillards, the shoes Amazon, and everything else will be down at the bottom for purchase.

CLICK ON PICTURE TO PURCHASE

So, do you think you are daring enough to give this trend a try?! Now that you have the rules in hand, go into that closet and pull out some clothes and start mixing. I look forward to seeing what you come up with. Tag House of Odara on Facebook and find me on Instagram at Oluwafunmifly.

For collaborations, email me at houseofodarablog@gmail.com

Love you.Mean it

 

Afordablefits

Sheer.Goodness

Don’t worry sis…your time is coming

Patience is a four-letter word. In this microwave generation, we all want instant gratification. We hate delays, detours and small victories. There is nothing wrong with fast success but remember, Beyonce did not become Bey overnight. The Grand Canyon, one of the biggest tourist spots in the world, took 6 million years to form. Wether it’s a new business, new school, new relationship, new friendship or a new venture…it takes time. Just like no one likes a rushed, half-baked cake, no one will like something that you didn’t put time and effort into. Don’t rush your process and don’t give up because your time is coming…WAIT ON IT!

That’s my soap box for today, and I wrote it because I needed it as well. Now, on to this sheer look that I’ve been drooling over since buying this beautiful sheer Forever21 shirt two months ago. The blouse is SOLD OUT (tears), but I am linking some other fabulous sheer tops down below. Since i’m not that type of girl that wears a see-through top and bra, I layered it with a striped bustier underneath, a pair of flare-bottom trousers and a faux fur coat were added to finish the ensemble.

I Love these trousers because not only are the bottoms funky with flare but they are high waisted which means they sit at the smallest part of your waist and cinches in the rest. It helps give an hourglass figure. When looking for jeans and pants, try and find high-waisted pairs, especially if you are a thicker girl. My pants are from my favorite store TJMaxx but I linking a lot of great flare-bottom jeans down below. You can always do a tank-top under any of these see-through blouses or even another shirt…just layer it and have fun.

CLICK ON LINKS TO PURCHASE:
Sheer Mesh Ruffle Blouse Plus Size Glitter Knit Mesh TopSheer Lace Embroidered Top

Flared Bell-Bottom Pants

Let me know if you would ever try this sheer trend and definitely get you a pair of these awesome flare-bottom trousers, they are amazing. If you recreate this look, tag House of Odara so I can see it. I cannot wait to see how you style these awesome pants.

If you would like to collaborate with me or if you need styling for a special event, send me an email at houseofodarablog@gmail.com

Love you.Mean it


Afordablefits

Form-Fitting…No Problem

“I like my clothes like I like my money, stretchable”

Let’s jump right into one of my favorite topics…Lycra. Okay, today i’m talking about what to look for when you buy form-fitting jeans and dresses and how to wear it without looking round or lumpy. As a new mummy, wearing stretch denim or dresses scared me because of my weight gain and the shape of my new body. Big dresses and sweats were my BFF’s until I realized I could still be a hot mama I just needed to pick the right items, pair it well and accentuate the good.

You don’t have to be afraid of stretch material because it’s a actually a girls best friend. When buying a pair of jeans, a 3-4% stretch is what you need. The lycra will help shape your legs and stomach and give you a great shape. Stretch is your BFF whether you are curvy, petite, tall or in-between.

When designers Daniel and Derek of SplashedbyDKG sent me a dress to blog for them, I almost screamed when I saw that it was a dark blue stretchy material. I thought how am I going to wear this without making my body look round? Well, duh, when in doubt, BELT IT.

The beautiful thing about belts is that they help cinch in that waist and give the illusion of an hourglass figure. You want to wear the belt at the smallest part of your waistline and let the magic happen. After I put the dress on and let go of my phobia, I realized it shaped to me so well and the slinky material was flattering as well as super comfortable. The thing I was so afraid of ended being my favorite asset. I found a pair of sexy Forever21 heels, a tulle sock and my fur jacket to add a little bit more drama to this look and voila, magic!. The dress will be sold at the Magic City Market today from 12-4 at the Goldstein and Cohen Building at 406 19th St Ensley, Birmingham, AL 35218. I hope to see you guys there. 

CLICK ON PICTURES TO PURCHASE:

Velvet Studded T-Strap Heels

So, don’t be afraid of form-fitting clothes. Learn to pair them with something that accentuates the good, like a great belt or a crop jacket, blazer or cape. My friend Aliscia, who is a bit curvier paired her with a trench and gold belt. She made the look her own and killed it as well. This is the same dress, two different body shapes, two different styles but both are amazing.

 

Let me know if I’ll be seeing you at 12PM at the Magic City Market and come find me if you come. Let me know if you plan on recreating this beautiful look and again, don’t be afraid of the stretch, it can be your best friend if done the right way. For collaborations, email me at houseofodarablog@gmail.com

Love You.Mean It

Afordablefits

Is That Gucci?!

“It’s not real, I just make it look good”

This blog is about how I found my Gucci-inspired bag for thousands less….get ready, get ready, get ready!

My look today is all about real vs. fake. I’ve always been one of those people who hated anything fake…especially fake bags. But, the way my budget is set up, I can’t afford real Gucci or real Chanel (FYI if you want to send me a real Chanel, DM me). So, when I found this great faux-Gucci bag for $41.99 I snatched it up.

This authentic Gucci Dionysus retails for $3,600 and if you have the money, by all means buy it and buy one for me. But, if you’re struggle booty like me, you love a good knock-off.

When I wore my Gucci-inspired bag for the first time, I got so many compliments on it. I thought to myself, “It may not be real, I just know how to make it look EXTRA TASTY”.

 

Amazon has a great Dionysus inspired bag for…WAIT FOR IT…. $21.99 (JESUS IS LORD). Now, let’s get into my look and the links to purchase these great pieces. Like I said in my last Fall-inspred post, this season is all about layering. You can turn summer pieces into fall pieces by just layering it. I paired a gingham off-shoulder ruffle sleeve blouse with a great pair of black distressed jeans and a grey crop-top shirt to make this fall look. I added my Gucci-inspired bag and black heels to complete this easy-breezy night out with the girls ensemble.

CLICK ON PICTURES FOR LINKS

Gingham Off-the-Shoulder Top

I wore a pair of heeled sandals but you can mix it up with a colorful shoe or booties. This outfit is everything and easy to recreate so, go for it.

Let me know if you recreate this easy-breezy look and share with all your fashion-loving friends. For collaborations or questions, email me at houseofodarablog@gmail.com. Comment below and let me know what other looks you would love to see styled.

Love you.Mean it

 

 

 


 

Afordablefits

Sweater Weather

“I can smell Autumn dancing in the breeze”

Happy Sunday Lovies, please take a minute and say a prayer for this planet that we inhabit. There have been natural disasters from Houston, TX all the way to Sierra Leone, Africa. Let’s pray for the wellbeing and restoration of health, home and family for those affected by the storms world-wide.

This weeks look is another simple one. It’s all about sweaters and fall boots. I found a gold knitted sweater at my local Salvation Army thrift store and knew it would be perfect for the Fall weather. The sweater is not too heavy and could be worn with a undershirt beneath it. The gold color is also one of my favorites for the Fall. I put it with a Forever21 red pleated skirt and a short brown pair of old Jessica Simpson booties. I love this simple look.

Linked below is a F21 pleated skirt and a comparable sweater both for $15.99. I also linked a pair of boots that are perfect for the fall. My vintage Dooney and Bourke is old but any great leather bag would go perfect with this look.

CLICK ON LINK TO PURCHASE:

Pleated Mini Skirt    Waffle Knit Sweater

Remember Fall is all about layering. My skirt is short and my sweater is long and warm. The booties are short because it’s not cold enough for thigh-highs. Play round with summer items you have in your closet and pair them with boots, sweater, jackets, etc…layer, layer, layer. Let me know what you think of this look and how you plan on revamping your summer clothes into Fall pieces.

For collaborations, email me at houseofodarablog@gmail.com 

 

 

Afordablefits

NewMonth.Who’sThis?

“New Month, New hair, Who is this?”

Hello September, I’ve been waiting on you at the door. I am so ready for cooler weather and Fall season all summer long. In my hometown, we’ve been experiencing thunderstorms and last night we even had a tornado watch. I woke up this morning to torn branches and debris everywhere. My heart and prayer and support goes out to those in Texas suffering under the destruction of Hurricane Harvey. If you live in Birmingham, please support by going to the Boutwell Auditorium at 1930 Reverend Abraham Woods Jr. Blvd, Birmingham, AL 35203. They are asking for canned goods, perishable items, clothes, etc that they can send to those in need. They will be accepting donations until Sunday evening. If you live in any other state or city, please find out where you can donate and be a hand in need.

Did you all catch my last blog on my favorite Fall item? If you didn’t, click HERE. This look today is sponsored by my favorite designers Derek and Daniel of Splashed by DKG. I am wearing their fabulous denim kimono skater blouse. I love the shape of this piece. I love the big beautiful bell sleeves and the structured bottom of the blouse. I belted it to give it some shape and accentuate my waist. I’ve seen it worn unbelted and that looked great as well. I completed the look with some lace shorts underneath and these ultra sexy jean boots from Amazon.

CLICK ON PICTURES TO PURCHASE:






This look is so different from my normal wear but that’s the beauty of style. Never be afraid to mix it up and step out of your comfort zone. Check out their website HERE for buying options and to look at their other pieces.

So, what’s something new you plan on doing this month that you’ve never done before? Whether it’s changing your wardrobe, exercising more, meeting new people or simply getting out more, in the words of Michal Jordan…JUST DO IT! I pray this month is blessed, full of favor and riches.

Be sure to register for the blog and follow me on Bloglovin for updates and on Instagram and Snapchat (emma ford). All emails, collaboration inquiries and questions can be sent to houseofodarablog@gmail.com

Love You.Mean It.