I’m a POC & Can Be A Better Ally

I’m a POC & Can Be A Better Ally

Today I saw someone’s post saying that if you’re silent on the world right now, to ask yourself why you’re so uncomfortable speaking up. Many will say this post came too late and I’ll respect that opinion. For me though, I’ve taken this time to digest and listen to a lot of people. I’ve used this time to journal, reflect, and work through my feelings, so that I may eloquently express my thoughts more clearly. I still may not get this right today, but there’s no more waiting to speak up on this matter for me. 

I’m not writing this to appease anyone, I’m writing this for myself because it’s been heavy on my mind and heart, as I’m sure it has been for you. I’m not here to fuel the fire and bring negativity, I’m writing for clarity for myself and to hold myself accountable. So that the next time I want to say something and I’m too afraid to, I don’t hesitate. So that I push myself to read and listen more. Don’t take this as me on a soapbox, that’s far from my intention. I’m writing this as a reflective piece that I hope at least one person can take time to understand. So that this opens up conversation so that I can learn about people’s experiences that have shaped their opinions.

Here’s my take. I’m not silent because I’m okay with the wrongful deaths we have seen replayed and reposted across our timelines. I’m silent because if I feel this disgusted, confused and sad, then imagine how our black brothers and sisters are feeling. I’m not white, but I have privilege and I recognize that. I’m not white, but my fiancé is. I will never have to feel or worry the way my family and friends have to that are black, or have a black spouse or have bi-racial/ black children. I’m not white, but I mourn with the black community and I know I can be a better ally as a POC. I’m aware I will never understand.

Many countries have an underlying characteristic that unites their people. We never had that. We had slavery, Jim Crow, lynching and so much more. This country NEVER treated people equitably. There has always been a divide. This country had slavery for over 200 years and after that, black people still had to go through segregation. It’s only been 55 years since segregation was outlawed…black people have always been a marginalized group. We’re on a hamster wheel and until we start having these conversations and we start seeing action, we’ll stay on the wheel. 

I understand there’s been destruction the last few days, there’s been ugly arguing, but people are more important than property. Although I feel terrible for every business hit, by many who were just opportunistic looters, I feel twice as terrible for our black CITIZENS not feeling heard and that this destruction is now being talked about more than the life we just lost. This is nothing new- racially fueled attacks are unfortunately nothing new. Let that sink in. 

Here’s where I stand. I don’t think your profession makes you a bad person. I think you are either an evil person or a good person, just wearing the same uniform to work. You can take off a uniform, black people can’t take off color. I do truly believe there are good police officers because I know many of them outside of their uniform. I’ve seen their uniform amplify the good they want to provide to their community because they have a duty to do so.

For GEORGE FLOYD, this was not the case. For PHILANDO CASTILE, this was not the case. For BOTHAM JEAN, this was not the case. For BREONNA TAYLOR, this was not the case. I can go on and on…

In my opinion, this is so much deeper than that though. It’s when people of power, abuse it. It’s when people of power are racist, prejudice, discriminatory- they are bigots. We have seen this abuse of power and misuse of privilege amongst our citizens. We have lost the lives of AHMAUD ARBERY and TRAYVON MARTIN because of it. We have seen the “Karens” and the recent video with the Central Park incident with Christian Cooper that could’ve went a lot differently.

We continue to see this privilege and power abused in the healthcare system, judicial system, and in society as a whole. If we’re all US Citizens and we’re all supposed to be equal, then we need to start acting like it. It starts at home. We will probably never eradicate bigotry since it starts at home, but we can shame, we hold those people accountable, we can hold our society to standards that aren’t bias.

At the end of the day, we all need to do better and it will take time. We all need to talk about it more. We can’t sit here and say “all these people are animals, look at them looting” without also posting about the loss of life that fueled some of the outrage. We can’t go back to the peaceful protest Kaepernick started and still think he was kneeling for the flag/the military and not the injustice we see black people having to endure and how marginalized they are. We can’t keep shutting down people who have a platform to speak when they do.

I will personally be reading and educating myself to be an even better ally. Below are some resources and readings people have sent my way in case you would like to check them out too. It starts with us.

So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo | The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander | The Color of Law by Richard Rothstein | Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together In The Cafeteria? by Beverly Daniel Tatum, PhD

Here’s a great link with TONS of ways to contribute: https://blacklivesmatters.carrd.co/

Donate to the NAACP or The Minnesota Freedom Fund, sign petitions, call your representatives, vote, listen to POC openly and speak out. I know there’s a lot more you can read, listen to, and do, but this is a start.


It’s Giveaway Time! – CLOSED 5/16

It’s Giveaway Time! – CLOSED 5/16

I am so excited to be doing this as I can relate so hard! I should’ve been getting married today, but the pandemic pushed it back. Totally okay, I’m excited for when I can get all my family and friends to come celebrate with us! With this said though, I woke up at the beginning of this week with an idea to share and spread the love to TWO deserving brides. I’m giving away TWO care packages for brides so they can feel a bit spoiled. This is an Instagram giveaway only, but this post is a bonus entry. All you have to do it comment on it, add your Instagram handle as well!

This post also gives you a look into what’s included in these packages! So here’s the list since not everything is pictured (dang Rona, slowing down shipping!)

Naturally I added in some items from local businesses I love, but I also grabbed items that I’ll just list without linking!

Good Luck!
  1. Each bride will be receiving a pair of earrings from Shani Amara. You’ll receive a statement pair and a delicate studded pair.
  2. Two bath bombs from L.A Suds, they are to die for!
  3. A stunning glitter pod from Shimmer Down.
  4. Bride and Groom koozies
  5. Mr & Mrs Passport holders and luggage tags
  6. Bridal games
  7. Mr & Mrs sign
  8. Guestbook frame
  9. Light up string clip lights
  10. “Bridal” flip flops
  11. An Essie nail polish…or two
  12. Face masks
  13. Ban.do tumbler
  14. Ban.do gym/travel bag
  15. The Knot wedding book
  16. A make up bag
  17. A “Bride” cup
  18. A notepad
  19. A notebook
  20. A pearled headband in white or pink
  21. Bling Ring Cleaner
  22. $30 Gift Card to Simple & Sentimental for each bride. I got my cake topper and plenty more from them and I’m OBSESSED!

Each box will have a combination of these items, but NOT ALL ITEMS LISTED!

I’m so excited to get these mailed out. Again as a reminder, this post is for a bonus giveaway entry, so just comment below with your Instagram handle! This giveaway ends on May 16, 2020 at 10pm.

xx Alicia

E is for Entrepreneur

Do you really know the person or people behind your favorite brand or business? Have you ever even wondered? I do, but it’s because the people behind the business intrigue me! It takes a lot of effort and time for a business or brand to bloom.
My name is Alicia Cabrera and in today’s episode, I wanted to take some time to introduce myself and talk about the mission and purpose behind this podcast! I’ll get into why I started E is for Entrepreneur and you’ll hear me say excited probably 10 times. I’m excited to share this with you guys!
E is for ENTREPRENEUR INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/eisforentrepreneur/
Do you really know the person or people behind your favorite brand or business? Have you ever even wondered? I do, but it’s because the people behind the business intrigue me! It takes a lot of effort and time for a business or brand to bloom. ⁣ ⁣ You’re going to get a look into the life of an entrepreneur today that specializes in a niche market. ⁣
Amy Crowe is the owner and founder of Worthy Figures; a plus-sized boutique in Charlotte, NC. She is a lawyer by day and an entrepreneur, always. She currently is involved with the FemmeClub and helps lead Charlotte Collective. Amy will share lessons, hardships, successes, and upcoming events on today’s podcast.⁣ ⁣
PLEASE MAKE NOTE AT 40:10 my dog decided to say hello. I apologize…we’re working on it! ⁣ ⁣
Worthy Figures website: https://www.worthyfigures.com/⁣
Worthy Figures Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/worthyfigures/⁣
E is for ENTREPRENEUR INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/eisforentrepreneur/ ⁣
Do you really know the person or people behind your favorite brand or business? Have you ever even wondered? I do, but it’s because the people behind the business intrigue me! It takes a lot of effort and time for a business or brand to bloom.
When you turn something you love doing into a business, you’ve started your entrepreneurial journey. That’s the story of today’s guest. Owner of Shimmer Down, Jess Duvall joins me to share success stories, how to manage time, and the journey of taking yourself seriously.
Shimmer Down website: https://shimmerdown.com/
Shimmer Down Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/shimmer.down/
Shimmer Down Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/shimmerdownstudio/
E is for ENTREPRENEUR INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/eisforentrepreneur/
Do you really know the person or people behind your favorite brand or business? Have you ever even wondered? I do, but it’s because the people behind the business intrigue me! It takes a lot of effort and time for a business or brand to bloom.

Ryan is a father, host, author, speaker, and creator of the non profit organization Black Fathers Rock. Ryan is a true entrepreneur with big plans in the social responsibility world. His non-profit not only was rooted from his own experience, but that experience continues to drive the mission of this organization. The mission to dispel and change the narrative that all black fathers are absent. 

Ryan’s Information: 
Black Fathers Rock website: https://www.blackfathersrock.org/ 
Black Fathers Rock Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/blkfathersrock/ 
Ryan’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ryan_jorel/ 
Did you enjoy today’s episode? Subscribe and rate our podcast! You can also follow us on Instagram. 
E is for ENTREPRENEUR INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/eisforentrepreneur/
Do you really know the person or people behind your favorite brand or business? Have you ever even wondered? I do, but it’s because the people behind the business intrigue me! It takes a lot of effort and time for a business or brand to bloom.
Alley is a mom, lighting bolt connoisseur, your go to for some relatable humor and an entrepreneur who walks the line of basic and bold flawlessly. She’s got you if you’re looking for a wine rec and a face most of you in Charlotte may know from her time at the Charlotte Collective store. Today she shares how she’s figuring out inventory, balancing work and home, and how she is facing the uncertainty that this pandemic has caused. 

Alley’s Information: 
Lini + Pop Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/liniandpop/
Lini + Pop website: https://liniandpop.com/
Local? Find Lini + Pop at Charlotte Collective: 1222 Central Ave, Charlotte, NC 28204. More information at https://www.cltcollective.com/

Did you enjoy today’s episode? Subscribe and rate/review our podcast! You can also follow us on Instagram.
E is for ENTREPRENEUR INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/eisforentrepreneur/
Do you really know the person or people behind your favorite brand or business? Have you ever even wondered? I do, but it’s because the people behind the business intrigue me! It takes a lot of effort and time for a business or brand to bloom. ) is a matchmaker and relationship coach, host of the “While We Wait” podcast, a wife, a mother, and self titled “unapologetic brown skin girl”. Love in her commodity and people are her business. 

Today she shares how she has built her business as a solopreneur, how she manages her time with her family, and what’s she’s learned about herself. 

Julie’s Information: Julie’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/julieowadley/
Eli Simone Services: https://www.elisimone.com/
You can also follow us on Instagram. E is for ENTREPRENEUR INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/eisforentrepreneur/
Did you enjoy today’s episode? Please SUBSCRIBE and RATE/REVIEW the podcast! 
Do you really know the person or people behind your favorite brand or business? Have you ever even wondered? I do, but it’s because the people behind the business intrigue me! It takes a lot of effort and time for a business or brand to bloom.
Josh & Jess were friends first that built and grew their business together for the last few years. They have built their our vintage store full with 80-90s nostalgia that pulls at your inner child.
Today they share how they started the business, how they integrated into the vintage community, they comment on current events, and they share their goals and dreams.
Jess & Josh’s Information: Public Interest Instagram: https://instagram.com/publicinterestclt?igshid=vzy644ajjyid
Public Interest Website: https://www.etsy.com/shop/publicinterestclt?utm_medium=&utm_source=&utm_campaign=shop+with+us+now%21
Public Interest Facebook: https://m.facebook.com/PublicInterestCLT/?__nodl&refsrc=http%3A%2F%2Flinktr.ee%2Fpublicinterestclt&ref=external%3Alinktr.ee&_rdr
You can also follow us on Instagram.
E is for ENTREPRENEUR INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/eisforentrepreneur/
Did you enjoy today’s episode? Please SUBSCRIBE and RATE & REVIEW the podcast!
Do you really know the person or people behind your favorite brand or business? Have you ever even wondered? I do, but it’s because the people behind the business intrigue me! It takes a lot of effort and time for a business or brand to bloom.
TODAY’S GUEST: Lauren has built a business around the strong stance that feminism is for everyone. Every gender, sexuality and identifier. She is a twenty something from Boston that lives in the Queen City now. She’s a dog mom, a traveler, and a survivor. Lauren is the owner of Feminist Goods Co which has been featured in Seventeen, Buzzfeed, HuffPost as well as many local news outlets. She thoughtfully designs tees to prints that all represent their mission and values.
Today she shares how she started the business, the fallacy of work life balance, her design process, and the importance of building a supportive community around you.
Lauren’s Information:
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/feministgoodsco/
Website: https://feministgoods.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/laurenharbury
In Person at Dupp & Swat in Camp North End
Follow the Podcast on Instagram! E is for Entrepreneur: https://www.instagram.com/eisforentrepreneur/
Did you enjoy today’s episode? SUBSCRIBE! REVIEW and REVIEW us too!
Do you really know the person or people behind your favorite brand or business? Have you ever even wondered? I do, but it’s because the people behind the business intrigue me! It takes a lot of effort and time for a business or brand to bloom.
TODAY’S GUEST: Taylor and Nick are the owners behind Simple & Sentimental and today we got to sit down with Taylor! They are high school sweethearts turned newlyweds recently. They’re dog parents, creatives, and know how to whip up a good recipe if you follow them on Instagram. The mission behind their business is to help people create unforgettable moments with their loved ones through convenient, innovative, and meaningful products that reflect the beauty and creativity of our Creator. The Waldens have balanced this business since college and have still always found a way to give back.
Today she shares how she started the business, received funding, how to pivot your business, her design process, and the importance of boundaries when working with your partner/spouse. 
Taylor’s Information:
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/simplesentimental/
Website: https://simplesentimental.com/
Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/SimpleSentimental?ref=simple-shop-header-name&listing_id=738317778
Follow the Podcast on Instagram! E is for Entrepreneur: https://www.instagram.com/eisforentrepreneur/
Did you enjoy today’s episode? SUBSCRIBE and REVIEW us!
Do you really know the person or people behind your favorite brand or business? Have you ever even wondered? I do, but it’s because the people behind the business intrigue me! It takes a lot of effort and time for a business or brand to bloom. ⁣ ⁣
*TODAY’S GUEST: Coy is young entrepreneur leading informative and educational conversations around fashion technology and the importance of STEM. She is a fellow Clarkson alum and a true NYC girl from the Bronx. She is an author, speaker, consultant, and analyst. She is the woman behind the business and brand, Your Own Creativity. YOC explores the latest technology trends in the fashion industry. Today she shares how she started the business, the pivot made in recent months, and how her failure has become her success story. ⁣ ⁣
* Coy’s Information: https://www.instagram.com/yourowncreativity/ | https://www.instagram.com/coygriffin_/ | https://theyoc.com/ | coy@theyoc.com theyoc.com ⁣ ⁣
* Follow the Podcast on Instagram! E is for Entrepreneur: https://www.instagram.com/eisforentrepreneur/⁣ ⁣ Did you enjoy today’s episode? SUBSCRIBE and REVIEW us!
Do you really know the person or people behind your favorite brand or business? Have you ever even wondered? I do, but it’s because the people behind the business intrigue me! It takes a lot of effort and time for a business or brand to bloom. ⁣

*TODAY’S GUEST: Shani is the powerhouse behind SHANI AMARA, a brand and business that provides fashionable, eye-catching, and expressive accessories for everyone to complete their look. She carefully curates her collections to share with her customers. She is a dog mom of two huskies, has a contagious smile, and comes from a family of creatives.
Today we’ll be talking about the woman behind the business and her inspirations, hardships, and successes!

* Shani’s Information: https://www.instagram.com/shaniamara/ | https://www.shaniamara.com/ | https://www.facebook.com/groups/2554289734784065 | In Person at Charlotte Collective in Charlotte, NC

* Follow the Podcast on Instagram! E is for Entrepreneur: https://www.instagram.com/eisforentrepreneur/

Did you enjoy today’s episode? SUBSCRIBE and REVIEW us!

Episode 12 will be up 8/13!

If you have an entrepreneur in mind, please reach out through comments, DMs, emails. I’d love to hear from you!

Getting to Geraghty: Let’s Talk Stationery

Getting to Geraghty: Let’s Talk Stationery

Welcome back to another wedding post! Now although I’ll start by sharing how I found my perfect save the date; as requested, I’ll also be sharing some great places to find your stationery needs! The holidays are right around the corner, so if you’re looking to find some great, affordable options then this post is for you!

I’ll be going over each website; including the sales they have going on, what samples I ordered, where I purchased my save the dates, my stamps, the post office experience, and some invitation sneak peeks!

Almost all of these have discount codes and sales going on, so I linked them for you! A handful of these have email coupons when you sign up for newsletters as well. Each of these places have great options for wedding, birthday and holiday stationery!

I personally ordered samples from Zola, Minted, Basic Invite, Truly Engaging, and Zazzle. Definitely a lot more than I remember ordering…BUT it really did help me wrap my head around what I wanted. I had no clue what I was looking for in my save the dates. It helped me to narrow down paper vs magnet, matte vs glossy, and sizing options. I would highly suggest you order samples if you’re not sure what you’re looking for, but you definitely don’t need to go as crazy as I did.

After all the samples, I decided to go with a magnet and I chose Truly Engaging/ Magnet Street! They had a great selection and an awesome sale going on that included a discount on foil. The increments that you can also order were spot on to what we wanted which is something I was concerned about. Some sites are by 25, but they have 10 unit increments which fit our guest list better! You can see a peak of how they turned out below.

On our Save the Date, we included our names, the date, and our website. Usually people include the location and although we would have liked to, we didn’t have space. I chose to include the website instead since all the information is there anyways. We have almost 90% of our guest list traveling so accommodations and flight information have already been put up. I think leading people to the site now will also help when it comes time to RSVP as well, since we’re doing it all online through our website!

In addition to a peek of our Save the Date, I also wanted to share the Christmas card we did through Kodak Moments. They have great options and are also affordable.

Now let’s talk about how we sent these out. We decided to print our own addresses as I was obsessed with a font from DaFont that we went with. I also made a sticker with my Cricut to include on the back for a personal touch. As for the mailing process, if you are considering a magnet, know that you need to buy a special type of stamp for non machinable mail. I went to my post office to ask before anything else and I’m glad I did! If you aren’t doing a magnet, anything under 1oz can use a regular forever stamp, but just in case, go into your post office and check!

So now I’m onto the task of finding an invitation! Although we have not chosen just yet, we’ve gotten closer to picking one. We have looked at clear options, letterpress, foil, and so much more. I’m so excited to keep planning as we are just about at the 6 month mark! To leave you, below are some invitation samples I’ve been looking at. Anything catch your eye?

Let me know if you have any questions and as always, thanks for stopping by!

xx Alicia

Getting to Geraghty: Engagement Session Reveal

Getting to Geraghty: Engagement Session Reveal

Happy Wedding Wednesday! I’m so excited to share my engagement pictures with you all today. It was such an amazing day and our photographer was absolutely amazing. Every shot was stunning and made me reminisce back on the day over and over again.

We took our engagement pictures in Wilmington and were able plan two outfits. We decided to dress up for the look downtown and went casual for the beach. In each outfit, we still wanted to play off of a similar blue that will be a part of the wedding! I loved that we did it since it makes all of the pictures look cohesive.

I highly encourage you to make sure that you not only get along with your photographer, but that you LOVE their work. Something that drew us to Erin was the effortlessness in her photos. We didn’t want heavily edited photos that were blown out or moody- both which are beautiful, but not us. Not only did we love her style, but her personality was a true fit. She was laid back, joked with us, let us have a pit stop for beer (BIG WIN), and made us feel like we were in our own little world for a few hours! I have linked her below so you can check out more of her and her team’s work.

I plan to post about my prep for the day and additional details next week, but for now…here is a window into our engagement session with Erin Costa!

The weather was perfect, we couldn’t have asked for a better day! We took these photos mid-week on a Wednesday right before the Fall weather decided to visit NC. We chose both downtown Wilmington and Wrightsville beach as it’s where we spend most of our time when on the coast.

Dan and I have spent many nights walking the cobblestone streets and many days laying out in the sun on this sand. It was so important for us to take these pictures in the places we love since we are getting married away from home. We wanted to make sure that these photos were colored with our love and showed off what we call our “2nd home” here in NC. I think we accomplished both!

Picture overload? I just couldn’t help myself! I can’t wait to continue sharing more wedding updates with you guys. Always let me know if you have any suggestions for the series. See you next time!

xx Alicia

Touché Digital Age

Touché Digital Age

Hey there! Let’s just jump in, shall we? Recently, I had the bad luck of my phone breaking and I had to wait for a replacement. What that led to was a two week hiatus that started off VERY rough, but ended up providing me more self-awareness I didn’t know I needed.

I think we all know that the digital age we are in right now is very impactful. We are constantly depending on technology and more so, our phones. We keep our memories, messages, and so much more on a small device that fits right into our hands. In the beginning of the year, I tried following the trend and writing about my vision for 2019. You can read it here, but spoiler, I did not do so well. I will give myself a solid 2.5/5…awkward. Either way, one of my goals was completely about my use of technology and using the screen time feature on my phone.

Long story short, two weeks without my phone was a struggle. In the beginning of the hiatus, I used my laptop to constantly still be on social media. I thought I was missing out on so much and I hated not being able to check on my accounts. I genuinely thought this would completely derail the work I put into the blog.

Half way through I reflected on a recent coffee date I had with two amazing women. On this coffee date, I opened up about the stress of writing and how I fall out of love with ideas and how I don’t use my time properly. I took this memory and just started writing in my journal. By day 5/6, I would check my accounts, but not nearly as often, especially since I had work to push me through the day.

I thought it was so crazy that I was actually aware of my change in mood without a phone. I started off as antsy and annoyed, then upset that I may be missing out on something, to at terms with the situation, to finally realizing the blessing in disguise this was. It’s not often that you can be completely disengaged and not have people have an easy way to reach you. Although I can see the convenience, I now also see the benefits or as I have been saying… I think I finally understand Ed Sheeran’s madness. Now don’t get me wrong, by the end of the two weeks, I was extremely happy to have my phone back, but I definitely can feel the difference and recognize the difference.

So, here are a few things I learned about myself:

  1. I’m awful at directions. I rely on Google Maps constantly, so having to drive places without it truly made me use my memory and take time to plan ahead.
  2. Holy moly, people aren’t kidding about phones being glued to your hand. While out, I was the only friend phoneless and it was obvious as everyone was looking down. There would be times the space got quite and I don’t think anyone noticed except for me.
  3. I didn’t miss anything life changing. I was so worried I was missing out on something exciting and important and I didn’t. This made me realize that limiting my time going forward on these apps wouldn’t hurt and is honestly needed.
  4. I have a lot of time in my day and without my phone, I was honestly more productive. I indulged in Netflix; don’t get me wrong, but I also crossed things off my list that have been on there for MONTHS. I got wedding things done, worked out, and took time to write and read.
  5. I am so much more excited for my content. I don’t know the last time I had time to actually write; paper and pen. By doing so, I was able to outline so many things I want to write about as well as making lists of entrepreneurs to reach out to for CLT BTS. For two weeks I stopped comparing my content to others and it was really refreshing.

At the end of the day, I’m not a consistent blogger and I’ll own that. What you can expect of me though, is that the things that I write are all topics I feel inspired by, that I’m excited about, and that I enjoy. I am 100% in on each post that I publish.

So, do you ever just take a few days off from your phone. Put it down, maybe on silent or do not disturb? I challenge you to do so. I think I’ll try doing it again around the holidays to make sure I’m as present as possible.

What started off as a simple inconvenience lead me to a much needed time of reflection before the end of the year. What’s something you wish to take time to do before 2019 is done?

So as I started this post off, I’ll tip my hat to this digital age and say touché. You really have changed the world we live in. Now it’s up to us to decide how we use it and how much importance we put on it.

xx Alicia

Local Spotlight: Charlotte Collective

Local Spotlight: Charlotte Collective

Collective- col·lec·tive

When used as an adjective, it means “done by people acting as a group”. As a noun it’s defined as “a cooperative enterprise”.

Charlotte Collective fulfills that textbook definition and more. This shop is a retail experience showcasing so many of Charlotte’s small businesses that we often see online, at pop-ups, or within other stores around the city. They have created a beautiful retail space, an anchor for the community, and a supportive space for each other as well.

With the work of local makers, creatives, and passionate entrepreneurs splayed across this prime location in Plaza Midwood; 1222 Central Ave, you automatically feel that you’re walking into something so much bigger than yourself. You’re supporting someone’s dream as you’re shopping through the items for your closet, home, technology, and more!

I got to take a look into the Plaza Midwood location before the grand opening. As I walked into the space, the sun was flooding in through the large garage doors putting an instant smile on my face. I was ready to learn more about where this concept came from and get a behind the scenes look at all the work that’s been put in to get here.

When I reached out to my friend, Amy from Worthy Figures, I couldn’t help but jump right in. She explained that this concept all started out of chance. Although Area 15 in NODA is a close comparison, she has always identified a need for an incubator spot for small businesses to test out having a small shop of their own. When the opportunity came in South End, she jumped at it quickly and started building her list of businesses to bring with her. This list being made up of entrepreneurs and creatives met on the pop up market scene for almost two years.

When looking at the line up, I couldn’t help but then ask a few of the business owners why they took the leap with Charlotte Collective. Lauren, the owner, creative and maker behind Feminist Goods Co., said “At the core of everything I do is the drive to create a community and safe space for womxn to be exactly who they are. For me, Charlotte Collective makes sense because it provides the opportunity to pull together and collaborate with other CLT businesses I love and founders that I admire to create a space where we can build closer relationships with our customers and community! Also, as a plaza Midwood area resident I LOVE that I get to be part of our neighborhood culture.

Talk about a mission. It seems that the biggest overall goal for this space is to give small business owners the opportunity to have a store front without all the risk or expense. To connect with their customers in person and to grow a community not just with their customers, but with each other. It’s a task they all commit to. Amy noting that the biggest obstacle being the time commitment. Some of these businesses have full-time jobs- talk about hustle! If their mission didn’t sell you on taking a visit, I truly hope their hard-work, hustle, and passion do. The collaboration that goes on to run a store with 16 different small business is no small feat.

Alley, the powerhouse behind The Alley Way Market, confirmed how comforting the concept of the Charlotte Collective is. She said, “I joined Charlotte Collective because my dream has always been to have a brick and mortar shop! At this point in my business I wouldn’t be able to afford a solo stand alone shop.  So when this opportunity came around I knew it would be perfect for my business.  What I didn’t realize is how much I would learn from all the other business owners! It has been a great experience being around like minded people..

I shopped my way through the store grabbing more than I’d like to admit. More than anything though, I left inspired. It takes a lot for a small business to take a leap on physical retail space. For all of them to come together to make each other’s dreams come just a bit more true can’t leave you anything but inspired.

Here are the brands at the Charlotte Collective along with their Instagram!

Feminist Goods Co.| Glory Days Apparel| Golden Reeds| LA Suds| Pretty Honest Candles| Rachel Tenny| Shani Amara| TayFlower| The Alley Way Market| Winnie’s Boutique| Worthy + Badass| Worthy Figures| The Cactus Club| Cosmic Creativ| Elise Design Company

Their official grand opening is tomorrow, July 13th from 10am to 8pm! You can RSVP here. I’ll also link all of their social media stuff below as usual so you can follow their journey. Their normal hours of operation will be Tuesday- Friday 11am to 7pm, Saturday 11am to 8pm, and Sunday 11am to 6pm.

Do not sleep on this CLT shop- keep an eye out for what’s to come for Charlotte Collective. They may be small businesses, but there’s nothing small about their passion, business savvy, hustle and impact within the Charlotte community.

You can follow their journey here: Website | Instagram | Facebook

As always, thanks for stopping by and I’ll see you next time.

xx Alicia

Getting To Geraghty: My Bridesmaid Proposals

Getting To Geraghty: My Bridesmaid Proposals

Happy Wedding Wednesday! Today is 10 months from our wedding and is also just a week after I asked all my bridesmaids and maid of honor to stand by me on my special day.

The rule of thumb is to ask them 8 months to a year before the wedding so I figured right in the middle worked perfectly; especially as some are not here in NC. As I was preparing to ask them, I figured a call would honestly do. Then I really started thinking about everything they’re about to commit to… everything that I committed to at some point as a bridesmaid. The travel, cost, time, and patience is no joke, so I wanted to treat them and make them feel as special as possible!

Since I had to ship a few of these boxes, I wanted to keep the “breakables” to a minimum as well as not sending anything liquid or that could melt in transit, so I kept it as feasible- and as cute- as possible. Some of the items I made with my Cricut and some things I purchased.

You’ll notice that I did end up blacking out a few details on my card, but in time I will share that with you guys. I didn’t necessarily pick a theme for the boxes, but I just wanted it to feel beachy and fun. With everything I included, I’ll let you know where I got everything from below!

Box from Michael’s | Filler from Michael’s | Straw from TJ Maxx | Glass from Target – Created the etching myself| Stadium Cups from Amazon- Created the vinyl myself | All snacks from Target | Bubble wrap for shipping & tissue paper from Office Max | Cards & Envelopes from Michael’s | Notepad from Target | Daily Planner from Hadley Designs

All the informational papers were cut with my Cricut and printed at home on nice cardstock that I purchased. I made a card for my colors, attire & accommodations, information about our day and the days leading up to the wedding, as well as a cute note about being a bridesmaid! Although this seems like a lot information right off the bat, I just wanted to ensure they had all the information they needed right away; especially since I have some out of state.

So if you’re been in a bridal party, what’s been your favorite gift or gifts you’ve received? Let me know, as I can always use ideas! Thank you for stopping by for another Wedding Wednesday post in the “Getting to Geraghty” series. I’ll see you next time!

xx Alicia

25 Things I’ve Learned As I Turn 25

25 Things I’ve Learned As I Turn 25

I feel as though this is a pretty typical post you see for big milestone birthdays. I wanted to put a bit of a spin on it and let you guys into how my last 24 years have shaped and molded me into what’s about to be one of the best years of my life! I have a lot to look forward to this 25th year, so it’s been extremely refreshing to look back and reflect on how far I’ve already come.

In the past 24 years, I have graduated college; technically not high school- long story, gotten a big girl job, moved states, have lived overseas, gotten a dog, purchased a house, started a blog, and have gotten engaged!

Then there are the struggles. I have lost those that I have loved, I have left a job, I have had major surgery, been rejected, had my heartbroken, and have struggled with myself.

Good or bad, I’m so grateful I opened my eyes on my 25th birthday, ready to take on another year. So without further a-do, let’s jump into it!

  1. Self-love and self- awareness is a journey. You get better and better at it, but it doesn’t happen overnight.
  2. Self-confidence does not equal self-love. I said it. I find myself still battling my confidence in other places in my life other than the love of myself.
  3. Some people just don’t love, respect, and/or support you as you do for them. That’s okay. Recognize it, evaluate the relationship you have with them and figure out whether it’s a healthy relationship to keep in your life.
  4. Emotions are not a weakness. Learn to communicate your emotions, but understand that being “more emotional” doesn’t make your emotions less valid.
  5. As you grow, some people will always see you for the person you were. Those people are probably not in your life anymore…you know who you are. You don’t need to prove you’ve grown. Your actions will speak for you.
  6. TREASURE YOUR ALONE TIME. Being comfortable being alone only makes you stronger when you’re with others. It keeps you balanced.
  7. Just do it. Life is too short. If you want to travel, find a way. Want to start a new hobby, try it.
  8. Spend time on what brings you joy.
  9. De-clutter your life and refocus on people, goals, dreams, and versions of yourself you want to work on. Anything that doesn’t serve that purpose, let go.
  10. Fail, fail again, and then try again until you succeed. Success comes from failure. The failure to try does not bring you success.
  11. Let your mom continue to teach you…especially when you think you can sew, but can’t.
  12. There’s not one way to do something. Honestly, don’t get stuck in your ways and realize everyone has their way of doing something.
  13. Everyone falls on the dance floor at least once in their life and everyone dances on a table at some point or another.
  14. Everyone has something to contribute and something to teach you. Listen up!
  15. Just because you’re right does not make you smart. Be smart and know when to be right.
  16. Stop pacing your life to those around you. Do things in your own time.
  17. Dear college, you were the best and worst.
  18. Family isn’t always a title given to those that are blood related.
  19. TAKE CARE OF YOUR SKIN. Skincare before makeup 100%.
  20. Making friends as an adult is so much harder.
  21. Take time and truly learn to have a healthy relationship with money. Financial independence is where real adulthood kicks in.
  22. In general, take care of yourself. Seriously, go to your annuals and don’t skip the dentist; although I’m not a fan. Just take care of your body.
  23. Get off your phone, be present.
  24. Your life isn’t over when you make a mistake. You’re alive right? Okay then, clean slate, keep living.
  25. Seriously- call out people commenting on someone’s body. It’s not cool. You don’t know someone’s story so zip the lips.

Bonus 26- Drink the beer, eat Chick-fil-A, and just be content with the fact that all your clothes will always be covered in dog hair.

Well that’s all folks. What would you tell your younger self? Let me know!

As always, thank you for stopping by.

xx Alicia

My Birthday Buys

My Birthday Buys

No birthday is complete without a few “treat yo self” moments, right? I hope so because I sure did go for it! Here are a few things that have caught my eye and I decided to grab for my birthday this year.

Although I purchased a few things, I was able to enjoy some great experiences this past weekend as well! We went to a local speakeasy, Top Golf, got my nails done, and ate so much good food I’m still full!

For everything I did purchase, it’s linked below. So, what are your favorite items to buy for yourself on special occasions?

All pictures are product pictures from their respective websites.

Self Love Sunday Tee from ShopGoodToBe.com | Thirsty Palette & Jawbreaker Palette from Jeffree Star Cosmetics | MAC Pro Longwear Paint Pot (purchased from Ulta) | Hair Scarf Scrunchie from Girl Tribe Co (purchased in two colors) | Jewelry from Baublebar

As always, thanks for stopping by!

xx Alicia