So here we have it, the very last day of 2013. It was a year full of challenges, achievements, surprises, shocks, excitement and laughter and it was a year that seemed to just flash before my eyes. I think when you’re always very busy, time seems to go faster than ever and so each year I love doing this review post just to recap on exactly what happened throughout the past 12 months.
TRAVEL: I don’t know why, but the first thing I always look back on in a year are the places I was lucky enough to visit. I spent my whole Summer in New York once again, sharing an apartment with 8 other girls (I still laugh at the experiences we had) and spent my time interning at Refinery29. While I was there, I also visited Atlantic City & Montauk -which were both as fun as each other. As well as New York, I travelled to Edinburgh with my sister, Vilamoura in Portugal with my family and to London for fashion week in September with lovely Nessa. There is nothing in the world I love more than travel and some of my very best memories from the year were made during these trips away. I’m so lucky that my family love travel as much as I do (I guess that’s where I get it from) and I’m excited to cross some more lovely cities off my list in 2014.
FASHION: Every single year, this little blog of mine, Retro Flame, continues to surprise me. What started off as a hobby, has grown to be so so much more and having this blog (and AMAZING followers like you) has allowed me to be brave enough to achieve my goals. This year brought many amazing collaborations with Boohoo -one where I was their StyleFix Magazine Cover-Girl, collaborations with brands such as New Look and H&M and of course, wonderful features in magazines that I have grown up reading. While in New York, I attended events hosted by Elle Magazine, UGG, Glossybox and even did my very own photo shoot with Teen Vogue (!) at their New York office in Times Square. I attended London Fashion Week in September and also had the pleasure of attending so many fantastic events here in Ireland including Electric Picnic Music Festival with Tommy. My style has evolved tremendously over the past 12 months (I look back and seriously cringe at last year’s outfits!!) and I’ve finally started to cut down my wardrobe to the things I ACTUALLY wear. I guess that’s an achievement in itself! :)
COLLEGE/CAREER: 2013 was the year I graduated! After seeing 3 different colleges in 4 years, I have to admit that I was glad to finally be finished. I genuinely loved everything about college but at times it was very difficult to put college work before blogging, so it’s great now to have that extra time. The start of 2013 was definitely very hectic with final exams and deadlines and being out sick for 6 weeks with a burst appendix certainly didn’t help, but I eventually made it in the end and was over the moon with my final results. During the year I did a post all about my (unusual) college path so if you fancy reading about it in more detail you can check it out HERE. Since finishing college in May, I’ve been working full-time on Retro Flame and other fashion projects. It has been such an eye-opener and has been amazing to wake up every day and be able to work on something I truly love. I’m not saying it has been 100% easy but it’s always worth it in the end. I’ve been able to work on events such as Steal My Style, work part-time as the online director for Retro Rose Bazaar, work at events in Galway and have also had the chance to realise that I absolutely adore interiors and decor. It’s funny how sometimes you just stumble upon a passion!
The scary thing for me about 2014 is that I don’t have a rigid plan. I know that I’ll (hopefully) be going back to New York at the end of the year on my graduate visa and I know I’ll be working everyday to continue to grow Retro Flame -but everything else is yet to be decided and it’s this mystery that is making me very excited. I do have some new projects that I’ve already started working on (which will all be revealed at the beginning of the new year) and have set aside some goals for myself but other than that, anything can happen this year and that’s why I’m so eager to get stuck in!
I’m going to leave you & 2013 with the 5 main lessons this year has taught me:
1. If ever you have a pain in your stomach which lasts more than 2-3 days -GO TO THE DOCTOR! It could very well be your appendix. I definitely learned that one the hard way!
2. Buying a hot chocolate machine for your house is only going to end in one way….addiction!! I think I’ve drank enough of it for all of us in 2013 :)
3. Some things take time and if they’re meant to be, they WILL be. Take pride in how far you’ve come and have faith in how far you can go.
4. I’ve learned to enjoy the little things with the right people. It’s very important to surround yourself with people with dreams, desire and ambition; for they’ll help you push for and realise your own. Oh and don’t forget for you too to be that inspiration, you never know how much of a difference you can make.
5. Finally, if 2013 has taught me one thing it is to….’Make it Happen’. You’ll genuinely only regret it if, at least, you don’t try.
Thank you all again SO much for your support. I read every single one of your comments and they make me smile more & more each time. I’m very lucky to have you guys!
Have a wonderful 2014 :)