Youtique Bride & Lifestyle : Not Everyone Is My Audience

Greetings Everyone!

It’s Friday and I completed my Faux Leather Cardigan.  However, I am on the video editing phase for this project.  Thank you in advance for your patience as that always take time.

While putting my outfits together for this project, I envisioned my lifestyle and all the daily/weekly/yearly responsibilities I had.  During this particular outfit session, I had a flashback of a meeting I had a year ago with a fellow friend in the Fashion Industry,  David Dang.  He had shared that not everyone is my audience and I had to get to know my audience well – where they shop, places they hang out, how they live, what their professions are, etc.  I didn’t have the answers back then, but it occurred to me recently.  I hope to express some of it through my outfit stories…

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Red Faux Leather Cardigan

When I decided to step out of my comfort zone a couple of years ago, I had the opportunity to meet some amazing women and each had a unique story.  I met them at bridal events, networking events, fashion events, and some are my closest friends and family. Their stories fascinated me.  I was amazed by their passion, determination, and generous hearts.  They were Brides-to-be, Wives, Mothers, Dreamers, Singles, and Women of faith.  I was able to relate to some ladies more than others.  They were the Youtique Bride or lived the Youtique Lifestyle.

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Meetings Outfit : Floral Dress with Boots

Bride-to-be.  I too was a bride-to-be.  As much as I wanted to plan the wedding myself, I needed help.  I had concerns and worries of planning a wedding so I hired a wedding planner.  She helped set up meetings with different vendors while I got to focus on designing and sewing my wedding dress.  If I could, I would DIY everything.  I enjoy going to the fabric and craft stores and allow my imagination to wonder.  However,  I also had to be realistic and remember my time limitations.  I am thankful for family and friends who helped make my wedding day extra special.  Many thanks to my Aunt Kimmie who made my wedding veil.  

Wife.  I too had to learn how to be a wife and manage the home.  Over the years, my cluttered and messy home slowly became more organized and clean (thank goodness for more cleaner days than messy;).  I learned how to simplify, build routines, shopped for the best quality I can afford so things will last longer.  I learned that quality does not always mean a higher price tag.  Often, I want to make sure things had more than one use and purpose.   I work alongside my husband as an equal to build a strong family foundation.  When I am weak, my husband is strong.  When he is weak, I am strong.  That helps us to grow together and learn from one another.  We build each other up.  We work as one.  I want to thank my friend John Tran for sharing this bible scripture with me years ago on “The Good Wife.”  Proverbs 31

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Grocery shopping, Car rider line, parent/teacher meetings, quick errands : sleeveless chambray blouse

Motherhood.  I too understand motherhood.  I want to provide my children the best education and life experiences I can afford.  I also want to make sure they felt loved and cared for yet allow for some growing pains.  I pray daily for their future, development of their gifts so I can help guide them in their purpose.  I understand that I will never be the perfect parent but I am giving it my all as a parent.  And although I try my best to have healthy meals, I give into fast foods once in awhile because of music lessons or after school activities.  Each year, I readjust my schedule for teacher meetings, school events, recitals, etc.  I learned the best time to grocery shop and how to modify recipes to make it quick and healthy.  My children may not always like the food I make but it’s ok.  We are thankful to have more than enough and life will go on.

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Business Meetings: color block tee & zipper front skirt

Dreamers.  I too have a dream.  When I first started, I didn’t know what I was doing.  I just had a dream, passion, and drive.  I had put together my first business plan and it would be modified several times over the years.  I worked overtime when it wasn’t necessary because I wanted my dreams to become reality.  I had sleepless nights because business ideas would fill my head.  I would fail many times but I was relentless because I knew a few victories will follow.  I did not want to give up (although the idea would often come).  I was always in learning mode and tried to figure things out.  Eventually, I would learn how to manage the business finances and develop the operating systems.  I still have so much to learn but I am thankful for friends who went before me and helped mentor me.

Singles.  I too was once single searching for a life partner.  I did not want just any life partner, but the right life partner for me.  I learned that superficial qualities does not mean a quality husband.  I prayed for the right person to come into my life and he eventually did.  He only came after I took the time to learn more about myself and gave myself the respect I deserved.  However, I would like to also talk about the widows and single mothers I met.  This group of women leave me awestruck.  In the most challenging times, they persevere.  They may be tired but they use every ounce of their energy to make things happen.  They are resourceful.  They are builders.  They are able to work with what they have.  It appears they can make something out of nothing.  They rely on hope and build up other women because they understand the challenges.  I see their victories even when they don’t see it, maybe because they are exhausted.

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Women of Faith.  I too am a woman of faith.  I rely on God because he is my provider, my strength, and my salvation.  He created me to be unique and helped me understand that I will not always fit in.  He is my creator and because of Him, I create.  He loves me and my imperfections.  He wants the best for me and knows what I can and can not handle.  He reminds me that life is full of joys and heartaches but to depend and lean on Him.  He is a loving God and answers my prayers by saying, “yes and not now, I have something better for you.” He reminds me that not all battles are mine to fight, but to discern and choose wisely.  He understands me when I am misunderstood.  He wants me to grow, serve with joy, and be the best version of myself.  I live with love, hope, and faith.

I understand that not everyone is meant to be my audience, but all are welcome.  I thank you for visiting.  If you choose to stay, thank you and welcome.  I look forward to our journey of growing & evolving together.  If not, thank you for visiting and I hope you find your community.  You are welcome here anytime where there is mutual love and respect.

XOXO, Ann

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Happy New Year! Here’s to 2020!

Happy New Year! Here’s to 2020!🥳🥂

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Top 9 of 2019 on Instagram: Thank you so much for your support in 2019. It was the first year I started Lifestyle Wardrobe Planning and I can’t share enough how it has improved my life.  It has been a lot of fun learning and expanding my sewing skills. Thank you for joining me on my #memade #wardrobeplanning journey.

In the past year, I have been sharing with friends and family that I am starting to feel “lighter.” I can finally exhale 🌬

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This could be due to several reasons:
– I started a prayer book and journaling
– my husband is almost graduating
– I intentionally surrounded myself with people who are genuinely kind, positive, inspirational, and encouraging
– got out of my comfort zone to do/create things I could only dream of
– created a wardrobe that fits and makes me feel comfortable & confident
– took time to care for myself. I started a simple face care regimen
– I got active.  Running became part of my lifestyle so I feel mentally and physically stronger
…..the list can go on.

I remember being scared a few years ago for many different reasons. How will I manage when my husband goes to school? How can I expand my business beyond bridal? (To my Brides, new projects are coming your way).  Is everything going to be ok? I can honestly say “YES”. Everything is going to be ok 👌🏼. Is it going to be easy? No, but it will be worth it.  You will grow from it no matter how hard and painful. Keep a positive outlook and ask what can be learned and keep focus. Always have hope, faith, and do it out of love.

Things may not always turn out the way you imagined, but surprisingly, it can be better than what you have imagined. Be patient and don’t take life too seriously. As the old saying goes “life is short.” That’s my two cents from 2019.

Again, thank you for joining me on my journey and I hope you continue to join me in 2020.  Well, I hope you have a wonderful, prosperous, & Happy New Year!

Hugs!

Ann

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PS. Here are my sewing projects that made it to the “TOP 9” on Instagram:

Red Lace Outfit, Front Zipper Skirt, Checkered Outfit (no video currently),  Easter Dress, & Red Linen Shorts




Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to you and your family!  May it be filled with quality time, joy, hope, love, and peace.  Here are some of the festivities I had the honor of being part of.

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My Children’s Orchestra Winter Concert & Piano Recital

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Sewing Fashionista’s Christmas Party.  I wore my Color Block Tee & Zipper Front Skirt.

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Christmas party at Mama Sabrina’s – My old coworkers.  I wore my Coverup with Jeans.

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Happy Birthday to my little sis! Although her birthday is on Decemeber 22, she still gets birthday gifts wrapped in Christmas paper.

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Childhood friendships from elementary & middle school.  I wore my Color Block Tee.

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Christmas at my In-laws

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Christmas at my parents

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Got in an 18mi run to prepare for the full marathon in January 2020. Thank goodness because I needed something to help with all the food intake during this season.

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Reason for the season 📷Pinterest

The homily I heard at Christmas mass last night was a great reminder of what the true gift of this season really is.

This little king was not born with crown and jewels. He was not born into wealth and privilege. He came humbly into this world born in a manger.

And although the world can bring chaos into our life, Jesus came to bring peace into our chaos.  May you find and experience true joy in His perfect love this season, even in the busyness & chaos 😉🤗.

Thank you God for the perfect gift 🎁.

#MerryChristmas and Happy Holidays!

Ann

P.S. Videos for the following Sewing Projects:

Color Block Tee/Zipper Front Skirt to the Sewing Fashionista’s Christmas Party
Coverup to Mama Sabrina’s Christmas Party


15 Years of Growing in Marriage

Greetings Everyone!

I hope you are all doing well.  My husband & I recently went on our 15 year Anniversary trip to Seattle, WA with just the two of us.  Our anniversary was on November 13th.  Thank you to my brother-in-law Thong who made it possible.  He took on the role of parenting and made sure the kids were fed & picked up from school on time.  He even waited in the car rider line;) – Thank you Thong!

It has been 5 years since our last trip together and my husband had surprised me with this trip.  I love the experiences & memories we got to create together.  He also got the kids involved by getting them to create a card for each night we were in Seattle.

Mr. T & I have been so busy the past couple of years trying to stay focus on building our careers & trying to balance family life.  Is there such a thing as balancing life?  Please share any tips because I haven’t figured it out yet:).  He has been attending dental school and works on the weekends.  Me?  I’m trying to manage family, grow my business, and keep life simple.  Keeping life simple is not as easy as it sounds.  However, both my husband & I agree that it has been worth all the struggles…I am starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel.  He will be graduating this May so please continue to pray for us.  It feels so close yet so far away.

IMG_5974This getaway was much needed for the both of us.  We had the opportunity to reconnect & talk more about our future plans.  We got to share our wants & needs without judgment & had a better understanding of where we are now as individuals.  We talked and discussed how we can continue to grow as a couple & how we can become a stronger family unit.  Our children love to travel so we can not wait to do more of that after he completes his semester.

We got to do our morning jogs together and walked to our different destinations.  If anything was less than 2 miles away, we walked there.  It was our way of enjoying the scenery & also train for the marathon coming up in January.  We did get to dress up one night to attend mass at Saint James Cathedral & afterwards have dinner at Aerlume.  We were invited to bring up the gift offerings for mass which made it extra special.  What an honor to be a visitor & carry up the gifts on our Anniversary trip!   Thank you God for the blessings!  I truly felt the graces & love.  My husband & I took the time to pray for those who asked for prayers and intercessions.  I also prayed for our marriage and for a deeper understanding of this vocation.
IMG_6155 For my creative friends, I got to wear my most recent sewing project, the front zipper skirt.
IMG_6187 Mr. T, thank you for everything.  Thank you for your dedication to our family & to me.  I know we are both trying the best we can for our family, but ultimately, I know we have to rely on God for the graces, blessings, & mercy to overcome any of the challenges.  We are almost graduating….ok, he’s almost graduating, but we did it together.  It’s almost real!  We got this!  Love you Mr. T!  Love you everyone!  Thank you for reading & sharing this big milestone with us.  Praying for many many many more years of growing in marriage 😉

Hugs,

Ann

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P.S. Front Zipper Skirt Video

Runway Houston Fashion Show

Greetings!

I am enjoying the beautiful weather here in Katy right now.  The sun is out, the temperature is nice & cool in the 50’s, and the sky is blue & clear.  It is a perfect time for a run, something I did early this morning when the sun was barely up.

Well, I got to attend my first Runway Houston Fashion Show.  It was a great experience.  Omar and his team did a great job with the production & presentation.  Also, there were several designers with their different interpretation on fashion.  I enjoyed seeing the different ways fabric and design can express a personality.  It was so creative & fun!

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@sameerafaridi
Aries Milan @katekillspretty
@lololester
@engomichu
@artinstitutehou

I also learned the Fashion Show was an opening event for the Lamborghini Festival.  This made sense as to why there were Lamborghinis lined up all around the venue.

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The extra fun part is the people.  It is always nice to meet up with friends and see familiar faces.  Do you recognize any of them? I consider them all part of the Youtique Family 😊.

I am currently in editing mode trying to finish up the videos to my Fashion Show outfit, the A-line skirt & the bishop sleeve blouse.  This is in collaboration with Sew Much Fabric.  That will be coming out soon.  In the meantime, please enjoy your weekend!

Hugs!

Ann

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Bathing Suit Coverup – Relax Ann! : Butterick 5746

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Reminiscing on when I got to take a quick getaway with my family and wore my #memade eyelet coverup😉.  I got to relax and enjoy the slow pace of life for a weekend.

Personally, I easily get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life and try to check off as many things as I possibly can in one day.  I tell myself that when my husband graduates, I’ll relax. When I finish saving for my children’s education, I’ll relax. When dinner is made, I’ll relax. When I finish putting my book together, I’ll relax. The list goes on.

I recently had a health scare that made me self reflect (nothing serious). It was a reminder that I will always have a long list of things to complete, but I have to learn to slow down and be in the moment.  Have you ever had to reevaluate your life’s pace?

I decided to take time in the car rider line to do prayer 🙏 and listen to podcasts, read books, or listen to audio books.  If you have any prayer requests, feel free to send them my way😊. So what helps you to be in the moment and relax?
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Btw, I highly recommend Butterick 5746 to get your personal fitting pattern. I made my red lace block pattern out of it. In turn, that block pattern allowed me to make my bathing suit coverup. I will now use the skirt portion of my coverup to make my fashion show skirt.

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I will also use the red lace block pattern to create a blouse. The possibilities are endless when you get a good fit on your basic block pattern.

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I will be attending Runway Houston on Oct 11 in which I will be collaborating with Rosalind at Sew Much Fabric.  I am excited!  Here is my toile for the outfit.

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Well, I hope you have a wonderful weekend and get to relax! 🤗😘

Hugs!

Ann

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In case you missed it, below is the video for sewing my Bathing Suit Coverup.

Guest Speaker & Teaching Classes

Greetings!  I hope you are all having a fabulous weekend.  I recently came across this photo below when I taught a Bow Tie Class at Francescas main office.  It made me reminisce about the times I taught classes or was invited to be a guest speaker.  I thought it would be fun to share some of the experiences.  Here are some photos along with the tutorials.

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The photo that started it all….


I had the opportunity to teach at Joann Fabrics and showed students how to make the Birdcage Veil & the Camryn Fabric Flower.  This was a lot of fun because I got to see students choose their own unique fabric to make the flowers.  They are so creative!


I got to speak at Elsik High School’s Fashion Department.  I shared how I started Youtique Bridal & all the hard work to make my dreams come alive.  The Fashion Design Students also learned how to create the Fabric Flowers.

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Elsik High School – Houston, TX


I was invited to speak to the Fashion Department of the Art Institute of Houston. It is always an honor to share my experiences of how I started my business.  This was actually around the time I started expanding to Lifestyle Designs.

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Art Institute of Houston

And below are the cutest students I ever had.  It was a Mommy & Me sewing session where the children learned how to make a little satchel.  Their mothers shared that some used it to carry their dolls and others their library books.  They were so darn cute!  I do not have a tutorial for the satchel but I had to share my youngest students;)

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Well, I hope you enjoy your weekend.  Take care & I hope you got inspired to create something EXTRAordinary! 😉

Hugs,

Ann

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