Saturday, April 21, 2018

HGTV Smart Home 2018

If you've been following me for a while then you know I've been living my best life microblogging  on Instagram. I recently had the honor of touring the 2018 HGTV Smart Home and it was so stunning that I had to create a traditional blog post that would do it justice. The HGTV Smart Home 2018 is located in Palmetto Bluff, South Carolina and was designed by the amazing Tiffany Brooks. This past week Terry and I had the pleasure of not only getting to experience the home, but we also got to meet with the designer and learn about what inspired her design.

Photo © 2018 Scripps Networks, LLC.  Used with permission; all rights reserved.

The Event
Myself and an amazing group of bloggers, designers, and influencers were invited to view the home, meet the designer, and have an amazing lunch on the week of April 16, 2018. We chatted, checked out the latest technology installed in the home, and of course we took photos! The drive from Columbia, SC, where I live, was around 2.5 hours. Driving into the location was so peaceful as it was lined with moss trees and long winding roads, which if you're from the south you know is symbolic of all things Southern. The location is private and feels like the perfect getaway.  Did I mention that someone will get to make this their home? More about that later, but first let's take a look at this stunning home and get to know a little more about the designer.

The Home
As I mentioned above this home is not just any home, it's a smart home. What's a smart home you ask? Well a smart home is home that is equipped with appliances, lighting, and even heating systems that can interact with or be controlled remotely by a computer or phone. The HGTV Smart Home 2018 features fun features such a smart mirrors that can be transformed into your smart phone, a coffee pot lift in the master bedroom, a hidden television on the screened in porch, and televisions in the shower and kitchen! Who doesn't want a television in the kitchen? 

The HGTV Smart Home is also packed with tons of storage to include huge closets, storage drawers under the stairs, kitchen cabinets and shelves galore, and an amazing laundry room! The HGTV Smart Home 2018 is 2,850 square feet and has three bedrooms and three and a half baths. It has an open kitchen that flows into a living area and then an outdoor living area. Check out some photos of the beautiful home below.

The Designer
If I didn't think getting to go check out the HGTV Smart Home 2018 was cool enough, then I found out it was designed by Tiffany Brooks! I mean, hello #BlackGirlMagic. What's even cooler is that she came to the event and was the absolute sweetest person you could ever meet! The photos of the design aspects used in this home do it no justice! It's even more stunning in person. Tiffany totally outdid herself! You know I'm a girl all about aesthetics. 

When I talked with Tiffany about her direction for this design, she let me know that it was not led by color, but by textures and patterns. She said that she focused on finding textures and patterns that went well together, but also that looked as if they had been collected over the years. She definitely pulled it off! This home is the perfect mix of southern elegance, modern touches, and comfort.  Tiffany's design style is described as "classic with a twist" and this is her fourth year as the host and designer of HGTV Smart Home. I told you, #BlackGirlMagic. Be sure to follow Tiffany Brooks on Instagram and check out her website.

The Giveaway
Perhaps the best part about this whole thing is that you, yes YOU, can win the HGTV Smart Home 2018, fully furnished might I add. 

What Do I Win?
When you enter to win, you're not just entering to win this gorgeous smart home, but additionally you're entering to win a 100K cash prize and a 2018 Mercedes-Benz GLC 350e Plug-In Hybrid. 

How Do I Enter?
Entering to win is pretty simple. Click the link You can enter to win 2x a day. Good Luck! 

Take A Tour

Property of HGTV

P.S - If you win I will not turn down an invitation to visit! 

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

3 Reasons Beauty and the Beast is a Must See

Things are getting a little more whimsical around here and my Disney heart is still dancing after seeing Beauty and the Beast this weekend. My husband thought it would be a great way to kick off my birthday weekend - which just goes to show why he's the best husband a girl could have! We saw the movie at the Studio Movie Grill in Charlotte which made the movie experience that much dreamier, because let's be honest, comfy movie seats and food makes every movie better. I still can't get the movie out of my mind and today I'm sharing why you should go see it too.


3 Reasons Beauty and the Beast is a Must See

1. You'll Feel Like a Kid Again. 

You're about to feel ALL THE NOSTALGIA   Growing up, Beauty and the Beast was one of my favorite movies. I was obsessed with the the self titled song. I mean I listened to it for a month leading up to the movie and I'm singing it as I type this now. I even teared up when Belle and the Beast danced to it in the famous ballroom scene, yes because the song is beautiful, but also because that song and the movie remind me of my childhood. Seeing Belle and the Beast waltz around the beautiful ballroom brought back so many memories. It reminds me of believing in happily ever after - of simpler and seemingly more magical times. It was like a reunion with your dearest childhood friends. You're sure to be transported to your childhood with each new scene. We could all stand to have a little pixie dust in our eyes and nostalgia in our hearts. From the unforgettable songs, to the charming characters you're sure to have a feeling of deja vu when you go see this movie. As you see Belle, Lefou, Lumiere and the rest of the amazing cast step on the scene you're sure to take a trip down memory lane.


2. You'll Be Reminded, That Yes, You Belong.

It's no secret that Disney is a master at storytelling. I have to say, for Beauty and the Beast, they took it to a whole new level.  Story telling is about connecting with the audience over shared emotions and life journeys. This movie will definitely give you all the feels. You're sure to see yourself in Belle and you'll identify with the plight of many of the other characters as well. It will remind you that bullies don't always win and yes, you do belong. I won't share any spoilers, but know that you are going to get more of a back story of some of your favorite characters. You'll learn more about the Beast, Belle, their families, and even our favorite kitchenware and furniture. This movie takes you on quite the magical journey and it may even feel as if reality has been suspended even if only for and hour and thirty minutes. We all need a positive distraction from time to time and this is the perfect one!


3. You'll Feel Like You're in the Movie

If you've been following the blog or if you follow me on social media, you know that I'm obsessed with aesthetics. The scenery in this movie was stunning. I mean, I think at one point my husband even caught me with my mouth open because I was in such awe. At time, I felt like I was literally in the scenes with the characters. You'll see beautiful decor, gorgeous costumes (I'd dance in Belle's dress in a heartbeat), amazing lighting, and the list truly goes on. It's clear no expense was spared in the making of this movie. Each scene told a beautiful story. Everything down to the last color used lended to bringing this animated story to life. Even the use of CGI was unreal! I'm pretty sure you'll be just as wowed as I was. Now, if I could just get a tour of that castle.


There are a lot more live action Disney movies coming to the big screen. You can check them out here: 19 Disney Remakes.

Have you seen the movie yet? What did you think of it?

Monday, March 20, 2017

My Unicorn Year: Birthday Goals

It's my birthday and I've decided to call this my unicorn year. That's because I want this year to be a year filled with ease, beauty, magic, and grace - in other words, everything I feel a unicorn encompasses. Oh, and I literally got every unicorn themed thing you can think of for my birthday this year.;)

I'm so excited and blessed to be celebrating another year of life. I like to think of my birthday as a holiday, and my husband makes a point of it to celebrate it all month. Some may call it strange, but hey life is for celebrating right? My birthday wish is to connect more with all of you. I started blogging because I had things to share, but the fun part has always been getting to know those who read my blog and find information that makes their life a little easier. In this new year of life I'm excited about just being who I am and I'm excited to share more of that with you.

I've enjoyed sharing tips on branding and aesthetics with you. Now, I'm glad to start sharing more posts about lifestyle, career, and everything in between. Like me, many of you work day jobs and then come home to work on your dreams. I think it'll be fun to share how I'm making it through my journey and I hope that you'll share with me how you're making it through yours. My posts are always centered around making things easier for you, so that will continue to be the theme throughout the things I share. Through this platform I hope to empower, inspire, and bring you a sense of ease and whimsy.

There'll be a few changes to represent the new things coming to the blog, but they'll be slow changes. One of the things I'd like to do is share some of the process and behind the scenes of how I'll implement new elements here on the blog. A part of my process has been gathering inspiration. Check out the mood board below to get a sense of some of the feelings I hope to capture here on the blog.

P.S. - How cute is my birthday cake?

Monday, January 2, 2017


Clarity and simplicity is key when it comes to setting goals. This year I want to help you become obsessed with not only setting new goals, but also achieving them. In my own life I've found that when I have goals I am more focused and feel that I have purpose. The clearer I am about the goal the easier it is to work towards it. I've broken down goal setting into 3 easy steps - brainstorming, setting the goal, and planning the action(s) that need to be taken. I also enjoy making vision boards so I've included a bonus vision board cheat sheet. Oh, and if you follow me on Instagram, then you can check out some additional goal setting tips. Here's to making our dreams come true and meeting each other at the top. Enjoy!

Free 2017 Goal Setting Printable Worksheet Kit

Using this first goal setting worksheet take some time to brainstorm any and everything you may want to do this year. Next, cross some things off of the list that may not be the most important to you. Last, choose the things that you view as the absolute most important! These are your goals for the year.

Free 2017 Goal Setting Printable Worksheet Kit

Once you've gotten clear on what your goals for the year are, use this sheet to track your progress. This will help you to create new strategies if the strategy you used did not produce the result you wanted. Keeping track of what worked and didn't work allows you to create systems that will help you to work smarter and to harder.

Free 2017 Goal Setting Printable Worksheet Kit

With every goal comes a blessing and a lesson. The only time you fail is when you don't try. If something doesn't work out the way you planned, learn the lesson and turn it into a success. This sheet will help you to stay in a state of growth and gratitude.

Bonus: Here are a few helpful tips for creating a vision board once you've decided on your goals. A vision board is helpful as a reminder of all that we hope to accomplish!

Free 2017 Goal Setting Printable Worksheet Kit

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

To a Tee

Nap Queen T-Shirt? Yes, please! I found this super cute little number while I was being sucked in on a Target trip that was definitely not meant for clothes shopping. You win some you loose some right? We’re all a few naps behind on the naps we deserve but I try to sneak in as many as I can – so I thought this tee was a must have for my wardrobe. T-shirts in general are a must have for my wardrobe and they should be for yours too!

Here in South Carolina, we’re at the time of the year where you have to layer to stay sane! The mornings and evenings are cool, but the daytime is hot. T-shirts are the perfect layering piece because you can buy them plain, with prints, or even with graphics. T-shirts are a basic piece of your wardrobe and you can find them at an array of prices. I would say always go for the t-shirts made with good quality.

Before going t-shirt shopping, have a plan. I like to have a good mixture of structured t-shirts and loose fitting t-shirts. I also stick to my very own customized color palette because it makes getting dressed way easier. My color palette includes: white, black, beige, blush/pink, and olive green. My favorite thing to pair a t-shirt with is distressed jeans, heels, and a cute leather or crop jacket. What’s your favorite t-shirt look?

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Does This Outfit Match My Blog? A Guide to Staying On Brand

Do you ever find yourself asking that question? Trust me it's not just you. As a blogger trying to build a brand, it's easy to find yourself: A). in a box you want to get out of or B). all over the place. When, let's be honest, we're all trying to be like Goldilocks and find that sweet spot that's just right for us. It can be a tough spot to be in. The only real fix to this is time and experience. 

When it comes to Kelley With Love, I've gotten to a point where I no longer have to ask myself if I'm being on brand, but it wasn't always so easy. I had to learn to tap into my very own aesthetic story and most importantly I had to find my voice. The one thing that you have to be careful of is becoming something you're not for your blog or brand. It's easy to find yourself being or acting like someone you're not because you feel others will like you more or that it will be received better. Believe me, that gets old quick. You may even begin to resent your blog and brand to the point of quitting. It's important to remember, that at it's core, your brand is about who you are, what you represent, and your values. 

The key is to be authentic from the beginning. When or if you decide to build a blog or brand and you begin to create your aesthetic story - ask yourself the following questions:  What aesthetic aspect of my life would I like to be represented in my blog? How can I capture and share this? For example, if you've been following the growth of Kelley With Love then you know my brand is all about fun, femininity, and aesthetics. Even when I'm not blogging, you will see each one of these aspects reflected in my real life.

Take this outfit for example. It's lacy - super feminine. It has a little off the shoulder action - definitely my idea of fun. It's white - one of my aesthetic elements. If you look through most of my wardrobe, desk accessories, or even my home you'll find these elements reflected throughout. I find that sticking with what I know and what is true to me has helped me find success in blogging and building a brand. Below I'm sharing a quick guide filled with questions I ask my self when creating content for the blog and building my brand, whether that be blog posts, products, newsletters, or social media content. Grab a pen and paper and check it out below.  Don't forget to share with a friend!

A Quick Guide to Staying On Brand

3 Questions to Get Clear On When Creating Content for Your Blog or Brand

1. What aesthetic aspects of my life would I like represented on my blog?

  • Home?
  • Lifestyle?
  • Work?
  • Style?

2. What in or about my life is the answer to someone's problems? 

  • What skills have I perfected?
  • Guidance & Inspiration? (i.e relevant life stories)
  • Humor?
  • Information?

3. Can I adequately and authentically share my perspective and capture what I want to share visually?

  • Examples:

7 Questions to Help You Stay On Brand (Your Voice + Aesthetics)

1. Am I clear on what I like to share?

  • Topics I enjoy talking/writing about?

2. Am I clear on what my ideal client needs from me? 

  • Problems he/she needs solved?
  • Inspiration, Humor, Knowledge, Creativity?

3. What has been successful in the past on my blog?

  • Types of posts?
  • Types of photos?
  • Types of social media shares?

4. Can I research how interested my audience will be prior to sharing? 

  • Poll/Survey
  • Question on Social Media
  • Question to Readers on

5. Can I pair this with other posts in the future (or link back)?

  • Which posts?
  • In what way?

6. Is this on topic?

  • How does this fit in with the types of posts I share?
  • Is this something I will enjoy writing about/sharing?
  • Will my readers enjoy and engage with it?

7. Does this translate across social media channels?

  • How will I share this across social media channels?

Did you enjoy this? Would you like me to create a worksheet with this information for you? Comment and let me know below.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Kim Kardashian's Robbery in Paris: A Reminder for Blogger Safety

By now I'm sure you've heard about Kim Kardashian and the scary and unfortunate turn of events she experienced this weekend. All of it got me thinking about bloggers and our safety. We often talk about how to protect our work as bloggers, but rarely do I hear the conversation we should always be having - how to protecting ourselves physically. This is often on my mind. Blogging is still a relatively new field. There's still tons of research to be done about blogging, how it's changed the job market, affects lives, and even creates celebrity. Many of us know those bloggers that are super famous and always jet setting and we aspire to be that one day. One thing we must never forget is that with visibility comes exposure and higher safety risks. 

Let's be clear. This post is not to make you paranoid or fearful. This post is, however, to remind you to always be aware and to put your safety first. I am a naturally observant person which I feel by default makes me extra cautious. I'm the girl who makes all of her friends call her when they get home safely. A little mommy-esc yes, but so necessary! I'm all about staying safe so I wanted to share some of the safety tips my friends and I use. Check out how to stay safe as a blogger and entrepreneur below.

7 Tips For Blogger Safety

1. Scope It Out


As bloggers we often have to find locations for photo shoots, content creation and more. I make it a priority to scout out places before it's time to shoot to get a feel of the area. I check out who's around, what type of businesses are nearby, and if there is any presence of law enforcement. It's important to check at the time of day you plan to shoot as this can make a major difference. While we can't plan for everything, having a good idea of how safe you are will help you stay focused on what you're doing instead of watching over your shoulder, or worse, running for your life.

2. Go Airplane Mode


Many bloggers, including myself, use the airplane mode rule. This mostly applies to Snapchat, but when you snap in airplane mode you can post your snap at a later time. In essence, this is just the equivalent to creating drafts of what you'll post for your social media channels. How can this help with you safety you ask? Well if you visit some place and you want to blog about it, you may want to share the location. By creating the post and sharing it after you've left the location, you're adding an extra measure of safety and security for yourself. Unless you're at a meet up, this will allow for safety while you enjoy the experience. Sharing your plans and locations after the fact - MAJOR KEY.

3. Go Incognito


Visuals have become such a HUGE part of everything we do as bloggers. From our blogs, to Instagram, to Pinterest we are snapping our most beautiful moments to share. When you snap make sure none of the things listed below are in your photos

  • Identifiable information like addresses
  • Credit cards
  • License
  • Passports
  • Plane tickets 
  • Checks
  • Work IDs

4. Have Squad Goals


When I went to college, my parents could not stress to me enough not to go anywhere alone if I didn't have to. Can we say stranger danger?! My best friend and roommate at the time literally took that to heart. You rarely saw us and our group of friends without each other. If you're headed to an event in a new town, or a new location to shoot, invite your friends to come along. The stronger, the better. In a group you all can look out for each other and help keep each other safe. There's power in numbers! 

5. Check In on those Social Media Settings


Security in social media isn't always as secure as we'd like to believe. Be aware of changes in privacy settings when new social media changes are implemented. More importantly, make sure your location is not on especially when you are at home. Get really familiar with who can see what and when. 

6. Ring the Alarm


If you find that you have to go someplace alone to capture content or to an unfamiliar location, make sure you carry something to protect yourself. When I left home, my mom gave me the loud horn that looked like a can of mace. It was to be used if someone grabbed me to throw them off. Sure it sounds ridiculous, but anything that gives you a chance to get away, if needed, is worth it.  Mace is also an option. Make sure you know the rules for any events you're attending and if you'll be able to bring these types of items in. There are also apps like SafeTrek and Companion to help keep you safe. You can even call ahead, if it's an event, to find out what safety measures are in place.  If you have to attend an event alone or got to a new location alone I also suggest making someone you know aware of your schedule, where you'll be, what you're wearing, and when they should expect to hear from you.

7. Know the Blueprint


I hope that you'll take a chance to consider your safety after reading this. Even if you never use it, it's so worth it to create your very own safety plan. Your safety plan may include contacts, apps, exit routes, and whatever else you deem necessary to keep yourself safe.  Use the tips from above to get started. Remember, it's always better to be proactive because you can instead of reactive because you have to be!

Now go share this with your blogger bestie and use it to help keep you both safe - and tell me what safety measures do you take when blogging?