cole haan

Beautiful Dreams

[Chelsae Anne | Photographer]

WEARINGSWEATER: (c/o) Neiman Marcus/SKIRT: more options here/BAG: (c/o) Frances Valentine/BOOTS: (c/o) Cole Haan/SUNNIESmore options here

Hey what’s up hello!

Thanks for coming back! I hope you guys enjoyed reading last night’s post on my hair. If you haven’t had the chance to see it, scroll down and check it out! It’s a good one. #hairflip

One of my all-time favorite quotes is, “Believe in yourself. You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you stop to look fear in the face… You must do that which you think you cannot do… The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams” by a wonderful woman named Eleanor Roosevelt. At the time (not to get all history lesson here) she was the first lady during the second World War and America’s Great Depression. She said those words to inspire Americans to get over their fears and feelings of hopelessness and do something great.

To pursue your dreams takes an incredible amount of courage. And strength. We’ve all been through tough times (don’t pretend you haven’t). But there’s a good chance those struggles made you stronger. So, I guess you should be grateful for them. I know I am.

And now… it feels like you can do anything. Right?! You conquered your stupid fears. (Once upon a time, I was terrified at the thought of starting a blog. #shy) And succeeded.

With that, I’ll leave you with this (because the majority of today was spent ideating something great and scary and exciting all at the same time)… your future will only belong to you if you set out to create it. You have no idea what it holds. No clue. But I guarantee you, if you pursue things that are super scary and amazing and big and awesome, the best is yet to come my friend.

So… go for it.

Happy Monday everyone!

(And yes, my boots are on sale. Like major sale.)

Xo, Stephanie

Unconventional Girl

Unconventional Girl - The Style Bungalow

Unconventional Girl - The Style Bungalow

[Chelsae Anne | Photography]

TOP: (c/o) Storets/SKIRT: Similar here/BOOTS: (c/o) Cole Haan/BAG: (c/o) Neiman Marcus

At 15, I left high school at 1PM every day to take ballet classes (yes, it was approved). At 17, I got accepted into my dream school – dream scholarship included. Weeks before moving into my dorm room, I told my parents I wasn’t going to college. Instead, I wanted to be a professional dancer (even though I was told it was impossible to do). At 19, I did it. I accepted a job with a small ballet company and moved to West Palm Beach. At 21, I got burnt out, quit dancing, traveled and went back to school. At 24, I got a job in public relations. Hated it. At 25, I started a blog – petrified at the thought of putting myself out there on a daily basis (I’m quite shy at heart). At 26, I left my PR job. Freelanced. Made some mistakes. At 27, I declared I would make “The Style Bungalow” my full-time job by the end of the year. Which I did… in April.

Yes, this is what I do now. It’s not a steady 9-5 job. So what? I’m unconventional.

Unconventional Girl - The Style Bungalow

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always had to justify what I do to others. I get it. My choices haven’t exactly been “safe.” I put college on hold to be a starving artist. I haven’t bought a house yet. I don’t have a five-year plan. And I have absolutely no clue what the future holds.

I’m not interested in taking the conventional route. Whatever that means. I guess I’m not that kind of girl. I have a mind of my own. I’m not a follower. And I hold myself to a different set of standards. The kind of standards that do not include conventional things like “stable job, cute house, dog, pool boy, etc.” Those things are nice, don’t get me wrong (especially the pool boy dog part). Just not for me… right now, at least. I like to push boundaries. My boundaries. And when someone tells me I can’t do something (which was the case with dancing professionally, PR, blogging), I like to tell them watch me.

Unconventional Girl - The Style Bungalow

I’ll credit my dad who growing up always questioned my decisions. In dating, work, life, you name it. He put bugs in my ear. And gave me the confidence to take risks and embrace uncertainty. Which allowed me to pursue dance, fail, start over, fail some more, blog, fail again and lots more. I can’t say it’s been easy. Truth be told, I like plans. Who doesn’t? But through the years, I’ve learned to be OK with not knowing what tomorrow will bring. Why? Because as you can see every plan I’ve had, has dramatically changed. Some of the most beautiful parts of my life were… unplanned.

I think it’s okay to not have it all figured out. At 17… at 21… at 26.

Unconventional Girl - The Style Bungalow

But if there’s one thing I know, it’s that I’m passionate about life. The arts, learning, writing, fashion… the list goes on and on. And I never lost sight of that.

Sure, there are things I wish I had right now. But I don’t regret a thing. Taking an unconventional route has shaped me to become the person I am today. And despite the many wrong turns, heartbreaks, tough lessons I’ve endured throughout my “twenties,” I’m grateful for them all.

Unconventional Girl - The Style Bungalow

Unconventional Girl - The Style Bungalow

So with that said, I’ll leave you with this small tidbit of advice tonight: be who you want, not who everyone else wants you to be. Because you never know where it will lead you…

Share your journey in the comment section. Thanks for stopping by!

Xo, Stephanie