Detroit, I’ve Missed You

Cupcakes

Oh, Detroit, how I’ve missed you!

After almost one year of being out of the scene, I attended my first fashion-networking event! Last Thursday I went to The She Is Project’s “New Year Do You” event held at Detroit is the New Black. The energy was high and fun as people shopped items from fashion designer Tracy Reese and networked with other female entrepreneurs. Attendees also had the opportunity to give a 15 second pitch on their business. I actually thought this was mandatory until I realized it was only me and four other women giving a pitch to a room of 25+ business owners. Why miss that opportunity?!

Tracy Reese-2Tracy Reese-1Detroit is the new black

Another highlight was seeing the other Detroit fashion bloggers whom I haven’t seen in forever! Hey, Leah and Jordan!

Detroit fashion bloggers

The rest of the night consisted of more mingling which I’ve missed so much during events! I love hearing about other people’s start-ups, brands, dreams, and visions. Detroit IS NOT dead, y’all! Carlottah Holloway, The She Is Project’s founder, ended the night with a toast to 2016 being one of the best years yet. I believe that. Cheers!

Carlottah The She Is Project

Fast forward two nights later and I found myself at Thrift on the Avenue’s (TOTA) and UnitedFront’s Sip, Swop, Shop event where you literally could sip on champagne, bring and swop items from your wardrobe with others, and of course, shop TOTA’s vintage gems and UnitedFront’s eccentric pieces.

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They auctioned off a rack full of new and gently used clothing which was SO entertaining- let me tell you! Guests (kindly and politely) fought for certain items while throwing paper play money in their air. While the model catwalked around the store, screams of “$20! $25! $70!” filled TOTA’s shop.

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Actually browsing through TOTA’s store is a blast, too! There’s never really a dull moment looking through racks of vintage blazers, faux fur coats, completely sequined dresses, pencil skirts, and kitten heels.

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Thanks, TOTA, for opening your doors to us once again!

Make sure to follow The She Is Project and Thrift on the Ave. for more news and upcoming events!

The She Is Project
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Thrift on the Ave.
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“And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.”
– Hebrews 10: 24, 25

Life as a Teenage Christian Fashion Blogger: Blaze Ann

Blaze Ann

Let’s be honest, the world is not what it was 10-15 years ago. With the power and influence of social media and the constant overflow of the media, entertainment, and celebrity gossip, we’re being fed an unending amount of who, what, and how we’re supposed to act and look according to the world’s standards. So, when I found this young lady of 16-years-old who loves the Lord, is a faith and fashion blogger, and is set out to stand firm in her faith through her blog in her high school’s hallways, I can’t help but get EXCITED. My, do we need more girls like her. Introducing, Blaze Ann!

Hi there! My name is Blaze Ann Carbonell, and I blog over at P31beauty. Before I talk about my blog, I’d like to introduce myself. One of the first things that people ask me when we meet is, “How did you get your name?”. If you’re wondering, “Blaze Ann” was actually inspired by my mom’s name, which is Blaziel.
I am currently 16, a junior in high school, and a resident in the Bay Area. When I’m not blogging or studying, I love watching my favorite sports team- the Warriors.
My blog P31beauty was started in the summer before my freshman year of high school. I believe that every Christian should make a statement for Christ, whether it be through talent, fashion, or being a living testimony. Before I started going to a public high school, I decided that I wanted to maintain modesty in my apparel in an effort to glorify God. P31beauty was created to encourage me and to give other girls inspiration for modest outfits.
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fashion meets God: Your “About Me” section says, “This blog was also created to encourage me to maintain modesty in my apparel as I enter a public high school.” What an amazing and creative way to stand boldly for Christ! Would you say blogging has positively made you accountable on what to wear?
Blaze Ann: Blogging has positively made me accountable on what I wear and also how I act on a daily basis. As a blogger, I want to be genuine with my readers and blogging friends. At times, I’d subconsciously ask myself, “Would I post this garment or outfit on my blog?”. If the answer is “no”, I’d decide not to buy or wear it. What I love about blogging is that you are able to find a community of friends that share similar passions as you. As a result of being part of a community, you are encouraged to be stronger at whatever your passions are. Personally, reading Christian blogs (such as Jireh’s!) has encouraged me to try to live more deeply for Christ. Also, blogging and reading other blogs about modest fashion has motivated me to dress unashamed in the midst of a secular environment.
fmG: What is your go-to wardrobe piece that you find yourself wearing multiple times, multiple ways?
BA: I really love tulle skirts. It may sound unconventional to wear on an average day, but I am here to tell you that it is not! What I love about tulle skirts is that you can dress it up and wear it super fancy or feminine. You can also wear it casually and pair it with a plain or patterned tee. Pretend you see someone walking down the street in a tulle skirt. Wouldn’t this sight bring you feelings of wonder, surprise, and a little bit of happiness? Haha, I don’t know about you, but I think tulle skirts are essentially layers of “prettiness” and joy.
IMG_2935fmG: You’re just a teenager, but your posts on your faith sounds like a mature, grown woman- I’m astounded! Can you share with us your testimony and how you came to know the Lord?
BA: Thank you for your sweet words, Jireh! It’s really uplifting! I currently live in a Christian household and have parents to look up to as Christian role models. My parents have taken me to church ever since I was a baby. I received Christ as my personal Savior when I was eight. God has a purpose for every Christian’s or future Christian’s upbringing, and I am thankful that He chose this path for me.
fmG: What are some of your favorite verses that you reflect on during challenges?
BA: The Bible is filled with wonderful verses that help in times of trial. It’s a beautiful thing that reading just a few words can fill you with comfort, reassurance, and joy. A few years ago, I was facing an inner challenge, and I remember being scared. It was night and I couldn’t sleep, so I got out my Bible and turned to a random page. I landed on Joshua 1:9 which says,

Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.” When I read that, relief just flooded into my heart. It reminded me that no matter what we’re going through God is with us, and He has a purpose for that trial in our life. Other verses that have helped me are Psalm 84:11 and 1 Peter 5:7.
fmG: Being a follower of Jesus in high school is not the easiest thing and I’m sure a lot of other people can relate. What advice can you give other high school students to stay grounded in their faith?
BA: This is actually a topic that I sometimes struggle with. In high school, it can be embarrassing for teens to simply do the right thing because most of the time the wrong thing is what’s popular. When Christian teens are confronted with the right vs wrong dilemma, sometimes the sneaky voice in our head will justify the wrong and say, “You’re just a teen! You can do right when you’re an adult.” For other Christian teens, myself included, sometimes you put your education in front of your spiritual life. My advice for other high school students to stay grounded in their faith is to purpose in your heart to do right and to prioritize and live for Christ. You have to make that decision now as a teen because as an adult, the temptations for sin will not stop. In fact, it may be harder as an adult since you will have to make your own decisions without the guidance of your parents. Other ways to stay grounded is to find a fellow Christian in your school to encourage you throughout the day, prayer, reading the Bible, and listening to music that glorify God.
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Thank you, Blaze Ann, for being so open and honest with us from your experience as a young faith and fashion blogger to simply being a student in high school as a follower of Jesus. I can only imagine how much God is going to use your life, your heart, and your blog to glorify His Kingdom. I pray He continues to use your passion for Him to encourage and inspire many other girls!
Visit Blaze Ann’s Blog: P31Beauty
Instagram: @p31beauty
“And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.”
– 1 John 2:17

“The Church Is A Hospital For Sinners, Not A Museum For Saints” – Timothy Keller

Have you ever discovered a song that perfectly fits as the theme song of your life at the moment? We sang a particular song during worship at church today and when I searched for it on Spotify, I thought it was the tune above. It turned out to be a different one, yet I’ve had this on repeat all afternoon.

Continue reading ““The Church Is A Hospital For Sinners, Not A Museum For Saints” – Timothy Keller”

#ShoutoutRadiance: Jenifer Fair

Jenifer Fair

I am so thrilled to share with you fmG’s FIRST Guest Feature of 2016! This category has been a major hit with the blog. Why? Because the variety of backgrounds, stories, testimonies, and lives is more than just a compilation of virtual vulnerability, but of men and women who have been transformed by the grace and power of God who simply want to share how He is working in their lives.

This guest recently found and added me on Twitter and I’m so glad she did. Once I saw, Jesus, blogger, and Michigan, I knew I had to reach out to her. Her Twitter feed is filled with simply stated encouragement and she is not afraid to share her heart and faith on her blog. Brace yourselves, this one is about to change the world and “Shout Out Radiance.”

Hello, hello! I’m Jen. I am from Marlette, Michigan. Honestly, I am super crazy; let me tell you why! I am an almost college graduate, a director over a dance ministry, a bank teller, a dance instructor, and a blogger. I love to dance, creating things, photography, speaking, writing, music, and watch movies.

I am passionate for the women’s ministry. Women’s ministry was never my original plan but it was definitely God’s plan. I never thought it would be possible but I really have developed a love and a passion for what God has called me to do.

Random facts:

I have an obsession with candles and watches • I was born with blue eyes but then my right eye changed to half brown • I love horses • I hate vegetables but I love bread • Coffee could be an addiction • Purple is my favorite color • I used to be a crazy cat lady • I love the mountains – I am your typical Tumblr hipster wanderlust type of gal • I am a HUGE fan of Once Upon a Time – in fact, Hook is my future husband • I will never stop watching Gilmore Girls • I am obsessed and cannot live without a To-Do list and grocery list.

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fashion meets God: How did you come to know the Lord?

Jenifer Fair: I was raised in a Christian home all my life. I asked Jesus into my heart when I was 6 years old after the loss of my grandpa. However, I walked away from the Lord in 2010. When I walked away from God, I was an inch away from becoming an atheist. I no longer believed. I stopped going to church. I doubted everything that I was taught and all that I knew. During the first two years of my rebellion, God would speak to me that I needed to break up with my relationship. Every time, I heard his voice I would ignore him.

In Spring of 2012, God spoke a third time to end the relationship… I will never forget my response! “Leave me alone, God! I am in control, not you. You don’t know my relationship like I do. I don’t need you. I can make this work. Go away because I got this.” Within 15 minutes later, my boyfriend of almost two years broke up with me. I went through hell for several months. I lost 20 pounds and became the crazy ex girlfriend that you hear songs about. One day, I found myself on my knees realizing that it was time to make a change.

In Fall of 2012, I came back to the Lord and believed again. Although I repented, I still wanted to live under my terms and not God’s. I was so stubborn. I thought I could control the steering wheel of my life. Let me tell you this, God is an amazing daddy! He knows exactly how to tame the rebellious. I had to come to a breaking point. I had to suffer a lot more to realize that I needed God desperately. I realized I need him when I had nothing left to give but a broken heart. I was a mess! I was tired of living in sin. I was tired of trying to control the direction of my life. I wanted healing. I wanted to be whole and pure again. I became desperate for him! I wanted to be the woman I was created to be. I knew there was more to life than being a broken record. I rededicated myself to the Lord and have never been the same since October of 2013.

fmG: You’re a Michigan blogger, too! Tell us about it!

JF: I started blogging in the beginning of September in 2015. I started blogging because I had a desire to write and a longing to encourage and share my heart with other women. I have been trying to focus on many different types of topics but I seem to come across writing a lot about singleness, self-worth, purpose, becoming the woman you are meant to be and embracing your season. Sometimes, I feel like I am writing to preach to myself and that’s okay! A lot of my blog posts tend to be exactly what I am struggling with at the moment in hopes to encourage someone who is struggling with the same thing.

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fmG: What’s your favorite blog post and why?

JF: My favorite blog post happens to be my first blog post called, “The Father to the Fatherless.” I remembered hating it when I was writing it. I fought with God about it because I did not want to write it. As I began writing it, I cried and allowed myself to be raw and vulnerable. Remember how I said I don’t like being vulnerable? Yeah, a touch outside my comfort zone – more like a lot! I received so much feedback by several men and women who were encouraged by testimony. I fell in love with the blog post because God spoke through me. I was real. I was me. I was speaking what God wanted me to write instead of what I originally planned.

fmG: I can totally relate to your “20 Reasons to be Thankful for Singleness” post. What was the inspiration behind writing it?

JF: Honestly, I hated being single during the holidays for the past three years. Family, friends and strangers would always ask about any potential boyfriends in my life and I would always have to answer “no!” – It bothered me! It didn’t bother me that I was single but it bothered me that I was frowned upon for being single. I felt that that singleness was an awful disease and that everyone could sense it a mile away. As I have grown with the Lord, I wanted to gain a better understanding about why singleness is a gift and learn how to embrace my season. Thanksgiving and Christmas of 2015 was the greatest year of embracing my singleness specifically during the holidays. I felt truly content with being on my own without feeling pressured that I needed to rush to find the man of my dreams and get married. I realized that I could live without needing a man to validate my existence. I realized that I could be the woman I have always wanted to be – even in the midst of my singleness. I pushed aside my negative emotions about singleness and embraced it with a thankful heart because I understood that God knew what was best for my life.

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fmG: Has being vulnerable and sharing about God’s love online allowed you to grow in your relationship with Christ? If yes, how so?

JF: Definitely! I am a very guarded person when it comes to my emotions. I am a very private person. God has been trying to peel my heart open by being vulnerable through my blog posts, tweets, Instagram posts, and Facebook statuses. Being vulnerable is uncomfortable but I know God is wanting to clear out my heart by removing the junk that has been built up against the walls of my heart. It has helped me to be real and experience genuine healing. I can’t wait to be raw and vulnerable in more of my upcoming blog posts.

fmG: What are your goals and dreams for your blog and for yourself in 2016?

JF: This is literally my favorite question! My goals and dreams for my blog and #ShoutoutRadiance is to minister to women! My dream is to write a 30-day devotional book and to speak at a women’s conference in the future. I am dreaming big – I want to write a book about my testimony to encourage the hearts of women who have struggled through their self-worth, singleness, dating, purity, and loneliness.

My personal goal and dream is to step outside my comfort zone. I told myself that 2016 is going to be the year where I would overcome my fears. I guarantee that I am going to do it! I want to be more confident and build my faith as I walk onto the water of 2016. I want to believe and dream bigger because I know the impossible is possible through the name of Jesus.

Thank you, Jen, for being so raw and real! Your testimony and redemption by our Redeemer is what so many of us are struggling with. Continue being a light for His Kingdom and pursuing Him!

Follow Jen on Twitter! @jeniferfair

“We want to avoid suffering, death, sin, ashes. But we live in a world crushed and broken and torn, a world God Himself visited to redeem. We receive his poured-out life, and being allowed the high privilege of suffering with Him, may then pour ourselves out for others.”
– Elisabeth Elliot