My roots are Southern even though my family is from all over the place. I think my accent confuses people. I definitely have a southern drawl because I spent most of my life in Spartanburg, SC, but my mom is Canadian and my dad is from Buffalo, NY. My papa is from England so I have quite the eclectic mix!
I was born in Fort Lauderdale and lived there until I was 15 years old. I grew up a total beach bum and spent more time in the ocean than I did on the land. I always had an entrepreneurial heart and loved to find seashells at the beach and set-up a seashell stand to sell them to my neighbors. We moved to South Carolina when I was 15 years old. I spent many spring breaks and summer vacations in Charleston. I knew I was going to live here someday! Spartanburg has an idyllic, small-town feel, and living there made me fall in love with Southern culture. We even had a mud slinging skip day in high school!
I get very little sleep. Luckily, I am a night owl, so I stay up very late working on the blog. I try to do a lot of my shoots on Sunday afternoons, and I often bring Harper along. It’s definitely a lot to juggle, but I am making it work somehow.
When I use my own camera I have a Canon EOS 5D Mark II. It is really old but still takes beautiful photos! I prefer to use a prime lens (prime lenses don’t allow you to zoom in or out while taking pictures). My favorites are my 35mm, 50mm, and 100mm (that I use for food & detail shots).
About 9 years ago I started my first blog, “Fried Pink Tomato.” When my husband decided to go back to school to become a Physician Assistant, I had to give up the blog and financially support my family. Once we moved to Charleston I started my Instagram page, “Charleston Blonde.” It has grown pretty rapidly over the past two years. I get asked a lot of questions about where to go and what to do in Charleston. I thought this blog would be the perfect way to share all of the information with my followers.
Refining my personal style can be a struggle, but I find inspiration all around me! I tend to lean towards things that are bright and colorful. Prominent fashion magazines like Vogue, Elle, Marie Claire, and Harper’s Bazaar are often my biggest resources. I’m also inspired by other fashion bloggers and will often stalk my favorite Instagram accounts for ideas. And, of course, there is Charleston Fashion Week! It’s the quickest way to gain insight into what you could be wearing for this season or the next.
I love to rock saturated brights such as fuchsia, royal blue, and emerald green, so I love to find color inspiration from the historic buildings and homes around Charleston. The perfect wardrobe should not only represent your vision and creativity but should also be tailored to your lifestyle. I want my style to reflect my personality and my passions. Comfort is also a big priority. I try to find things that are fun, but comfortable enough to wear while I chase Harper!
I was blessed to film CBS’s Survivor: China while I was a student at the University of South Carolina. The shift to life off-camera was really easy for me because I quickly began working in public relations with a women’s ministry in Nashville, TN. The only difficulty was getting readjusted to being around so many people after leaving the island!
There are so many stylish people to follow on Instagram these days that it can be tough to keep track. I love Gal Meets Glam by Julia Engel. Be prepared for lots of pink, embellished bows, and serious outfit envy! She wears perfectly preppy, feminine outfits that are bound to inspire your next look. I also love Blair Eadie from Atlantic-Pacific. Her blog is pure eye-candy for any style enthusiast.
Do YOU. Wear what makes you the happiest. Dressing for others, or being trendy for its own sake, is often the first step on the road to fashion disaster. We want to inspire others to step out of their clothing comfort-zones, get creative with the items in their own closets, and make fashion fun and quirky.
I love the slower pace of life and easygoing culture. Walk through any of the city’s historic neighborhoods, and you’ll find Charlestonians waving genially from the rocking chairs on their porches as people pass. It’s a nice pace compared to the hustle and bustle of many other cities. There’s something to be said for a simpler life. Plus, I live where you vacation! There is so much to do here: festivals, beautiful parks, shopping, beaches, and the BEST food in the country.
My favorite spot to drink sweet tea is probably on my front porch. I have the most comfortable and cozy Charleston Bed Swing from Blu Cotton Home. My swing and two big white rocking chairs overlook the marsh. I also love a good sweet tea at the Hall’s Chophouse Gospel Brunch on Sunday’s. Oh, I am also addicted to Arnold Palmers from Chick-fil-a.
I’m always craving oysters, especially the chargrilled oysters at Leon’s Oyster Shop or oysters on the half shell at The Darling Oyster Bar. I also love Thai food. I am a frequent guest at Basil downtown.