End Of Year Reflection + What’s next?

End Of Year Reflection + What’s next?





Photos by Lisa Richov

H&M Camel Coat (Similar) // Rag & Bone Black Jeans (Similar) // Zara Lace Top (Similar Here & Here)
Forever21 Black Heels // Chanel Bag // Vogue Eyewear Sunglasses

With 2 days left in 2016, I wanted to share one last outfit with you all and a quick look back on a year which was a little manic, to say the least. For as long as I can remember here on Retro Flame, I’ve always done an end of year reflection post. If nothing else, it makes me actually sit down and really look back on the year gone by. I’m definitely the type of person to always look ahead, but I also think it’s extremely important to look back from time to time, do a quick end of year reflection and actually realize how far we’ve all come.

As I’ve been looking online the last few days, I can’t help but see people either boasting about their ‘perfect’ year or else complaining that it was the worst year of their lives. Being honest, both perspectives drive me a little mad.  You all know by now, there’s nothing I hate more than negativity. Of course, each year brings challenges and problems we would all rather avoid, but the reality is, that’s life! It’s never going to be perfect. Some years will be better than others, for sure, but each year teaches us lessons which shape us into the person we need to be.

I can definitely admit that 2016 has taught me a lot of lessons, both personally and professionally. It was a year that threw quite a few NYC-related challenges at me (Visas, Career Decisions, Apartment Seach) and there were times I just wanted to give it all up & move back home, but looking back today, it really does all work out in the end with a little persistence. 2016 was the year I finally secured a visa to work for myself in the US, I finally found an apartment I love and I finally bit the bullet and hired my sister onto the Retro Flame team. For me, 2016 was a year of change and although change is never easy, once conquered, it sets you up for some fantastic opportunities ahead.



As I said, I truly believe no year is perfect – but each year does bring some perfect moments. And we all have to remember that. Even if you don’t give yourself credit for it, each and every one of us have achieved certain goals and plans we had been working towards. Last year, I wrote a post called ‘My Dream 2016‘ which outlined all the big things I wanted to achieve that year. I probably only got about half way through the list, but the things I did achieve still bring a smile to my face today. Some memories which really stand out are finally making it to Coachella with some of my best friends, doing the California roadtrip I’d been dreaming about forever, finally being able to quit my job, launch a Retro Flame Youtube Channel (which VLOGMAS made me even more excited about) & just making so many new memories with my favourite people in both New York and at home here in Ireland. Each year is a challenge and it’s easy to focus on the negative & challenging parts, but if you can learn to be grateful for all the good things that did happen, you’ll be ready to start the next year on a much more positive note, overall. Life is full of ups and downs but at the end of the year, any year you’ve been lucky enough to be here to experience is a year you should always be grateful for.



As we move into the new year in a few days time, I just couldn’t be more ready. I’ve said it a million times before, but the beginning of a new year, a fresh start is my absolutely favourite time. I have a list a mile long of things I want to achieve this year (‘My Dream 2017’ post is coming up tomorrow) and I just wouldn’t want it any other way. For me, last year was a year of getting things set up and this new year will be a year of doing. Each and every one of us haven’t the slightest idea what lies around the corner in relation to health and well-being, so when you have the chance to do things you’ve been dreaming of doing, you need to start doing them. Nothing worth having comes easy – a saying I live by every day – so if you want something bad enough, it’s worth every late night, every second job and every minute of stress you may have to go through to do it.

Since starting Retro Flame over 5 years ago now, I’ve always wanted it to be more than just another fashion blog. I wanted it to be a place for you to come to find advice, inspiration and often that ‘push’ you need. So many of us are capable of things we don’t even realise we can do and although I love my pretty pictures and fancy outfits, I want each and every post I do to provide even the tiniest bit of inspiration to one of you. So as we enter into the new year, I promise to keep trying to achieve this through every post I do. Over the last week, I was actually included in some lovely online features (NYLON Magazine & The Irish Examiner) and in one of the interviews I explained how my main aim is to work on the Retro Flame brand, instead of constantly promoting a million & one other brands. It’s no secret that a lot of bloggers tend to ‘sell out’ as they grow bigger and bigger and move so far away from their original style of content. Of course, I’ll continue to work with the brands I TRULY love and wear, but at the end of the day, the main brand I’ll be working on is Retro Flame – to create content, posts & videos which will hopefully benefit you, the readers/viewers who I just couldn’t be more grateful for if I tried.

2017 is going to be a big one guys and I’m so excited to share absolutely everything with you along the way. Thank you all so much for being a part of the year gone by and I can’t wait for the next chapter!

Keep an eye out for ‘My Dream 2017’ post – which is on the way tomorrow! I’m off to Dingle for New Year’s weekend, so be sure to follow along on Instagram (@retroflame) and Snapchat (Retroflame1) too.

I hope you all have a great weekend!
Erika x


  1. Orla Hartnett

    30 December

    looking forward to another year of keeping up with your amazing adventures!

  2. Elishia

    30 December

    Congrats on all you’ve achieved, that you continue to write your blog and live in NYC is inspiration in itself. I moved to NYC from the UK a few months ago and have had a few ups and downs, it’s awesome to see the move having worked out for you! Have a great NYE, see you on the other side!

  3. Deirdre

    3 January

    Great post. Trying to do my own list but didn’t really know where to begin but this has helped a lot! Thank you! ✨

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