A shopping experience to remember
Disclosure: This post was sponsored by The Palm Beach Outlets Mall, I was provided a gift card to shop for an outfit and share my experience. All views are my own.
So it all started when my buddy Aileen from Newsy Parents referred me to Sahily Perez from Pretty In Pigment to be part of a Style Challenge, #StylePBO, with a group of bloggers. You can imagine my surprise when I found out what we were going to experience! Yes, the Palm Beach Outlets! Oh, it’s just the best happening thing in shopping history to this side of the United States… There were several of us and together we make a powerful team to give you a taste of what is really happening over there.
Now, if you know me even a little bit, you know I am not at all one for shopping. Usually, I stick to just one store because most of the time I get what I want, how I want it, and for the best price, period. It is safe. This time around, I visited many different places; but you cannot imagine how things changed as I took a leap of faith and decided to broaden my shopping horizons.
I wanted sexy, cool, high-class, modern, trendy, but yet tasteful, all wrapped up in one. For the first time in years, this adventurous shopper side of me got ignited. What if I could pull this off? What if someone would take the time to school me again on how to dress.
Ok, I have to admit that it was quite scary at first. I was going back to this feeling of being insecure and dreading to let someone else tell me what they thought was appropriate for me. That was too much control to relinquish.
Either way, I thought it was about time I started opening up to the possibility of enjoying a bit of shopping. Besides, I wanted to use the experience to share with you about overcoming some fears and taking some risks that can eventually pay off. Isn’t this right up our alley here at MeUnfinished? We are all a work in progress and we are constantly discovering new frontiers that lead us to bettering ourselves.
So, now I am TOTALLY excited, right? Just getting together with the other bloggers involved in this #StylePBO Challenge was worth a dip. We were comfortable with each other and we shared so much: from the love of writing to bringing resources and contributing positively to our community. The Palm Beach Outlets PR staff was just amazing! They made us feel comfortable, and we had a great time getting to know each other over a scrumptious lunch (check out their wonderful selection of eateries here). We were provided a gift card and with that we would visit stores and put an outfit together. The next step: an outfit would be selected for the win!
There are many wonderful stores to see here, but found some super sexy pants at TJ Maxx that fit! Listen, when you have those long legs, it can be hard to find something you like that fits! So, I was happy. There were lots of sales going on. You can check out some of them over here (the holidays are coming! Wink, Wink!)
The most amazing experience happened at Forever 21. Ok, people, I am not at all 21, and I am far from trying to look 21, but the staff over there made me feel like I was the only shopper in the store and that it was their purpose to cloth me modernly but to my liking. Gio was his name. He roamed the store with me until we put together some outfits that he said “would make things catch fire as I walk by”.
To tell you the truth, I was a bit worried at first, because some of the items were a bit “funky” to say the least. He enlisted a couple of his buddies (as you can see) to make sure he was on the right track, and I enlisted my sister. Each of them would comment, fix, adjust, and get the next size up or down, until we got the finished product. No need to say that I stayed there to get the whole ensemble! I was like a queen, and for someone who has major apprehensions and insecurities when it comes to shopping, this team sure helped me see things with a different, but positive perspective. They pushed the envelope a bit, but would not completely erase “me”.
What do you think of the 2 finished products?
Many lessons were learned while going through this experience:
1- There are special people around you who want to journey with you. I am blessed to have found my new blogger friends.
2- Some of us might not look like runway models, but the staff in the stores can dress and help us build our confidence in looking stunning!
3- Be open to someone’s help. Gio and his staff, and my sister, were AMAZING at helping me put this together!
4- It is OK to be a bit daring… Playing it safe sometimes fogs up the way to amazing new journeys.
5- And finally, there is not always a big divide between who we are and what is trending: find the common territory that does not compromise your core beliefs and values.
I will be submitting the Nostalgic Fall Look for the #StylePBO Challenge. Share, Like, Pin, and most importantly Vote for my outfit to win the style challenge by visiting the Palm Beach Outlets Facebook page and Liking my picture. Stay tuned, details on that link will follow! Check the Palm Beach Outlets out and see all they have to offer. You might pleasantly be surprised!
Once again, a little Faith went a long way!
Thanks to the Palm Beach Outlets for the opportunity, to the organizers of the #PBOStyle Challenge event, to the stores and their staff, to my sister, and to my amazing photographer and friend Cindi McNew!