fall decor for small apartments

hey people!!! it’s me – alli tay!! I am HAPPILY going into my favorite season…..fall! I mean, who doesn’t love fall, am I right?! Festivals, pumpkins, leaves changing, cooler weather, big sweaters, bonfires – it feels like there’s nothing about fall that is not absolutely wonderful. I think people are just happier during this time of year 😉

Speaking of seasons changing…for those of you who didn’t know – I am going into a brand new season of life. I am getting married THIS week and just recently moved into a small apartment. My sweet fiancé (and soon-to-be-husband!!!) will be joining me here next week after our wedding. We are so excited! I have always dreamed of having a place to call my own. It’s the most precious little apartment and I absolutely ADORE it!

Of course, I immediately went to Pinterest for decor ideas. what I did NOT realize is that most Pinterest ideas are for very large spaces – houses, spacious studio apartments, etc. I could hardly find any pictures or inspiration for how to decorate small spaces to make them more homey and really give them that spark of FALL.

So, I decided to just come up with my own ideas! As you can imagine, as a newly (almost) married couple, the budget isn’t huge. I decided to do a lot of shopping locally – places like Facebook marketplace, farmer’s markets, Walmart, local thrift stores..I even got some cute stuff from Dollar General! I took some big ideas that I got from Pinterest and broke them down into smaller bits that I could incorporate into our apartment. I have been so happy with the results so far! It is still coming along, but it’s going to be beautiful once it’s done. I wanted to share some of my ideas with you all in case anyone else was struggling to decorate a smaller space 🙂 Happy fall, y’all! Enjoy these ideas and get some inspiration for your own place!!

Let’s start off with the basics – the entryway! I picked up these white mums from Walmart for $4! We ended up going with more of a blue-toned color scheme for the house, so I wanted the entryway to reflect that. I found two door mats (one indoor and one outdoor – also from Walmart and under $10 a piece) that really pulled out those shades of blue. I ended up adding the white mums because they give off a very fall “vibe” and help to brighten up the doorway.

Moving right along – the kitchen space! I loved the idea of showcasing some of our favorite mugs (almost ALL of our mugs have a story of some sort), but because of limited counter space, I really had nowhere to put them. I picked up some command hooks and put them underneath our cabinets so that some of our mugs could be on display! I really love how it turned out. Pro Tip: make sure to put the hooks on facing FORWARD…I wasn’t thinking and originally had all of the hooks facing sideways, so the sides of the mugs weren’t showing. You can see in this picture the correct way to place the hooks!

Lemme tell ya about DOLLAR GENERAL!! The best place for cheap decor – as crazy as that sounds!! I have a neat vase that I purchased from a small local vendor’s market. It’s eventually going to go on the dining room table (which is actually being delivered today!). Up until last week, I’d had bright pink and white fake flowers in the vase, and it was bugging me because I wanted to pull some of those fall tones into the apartment. I swung by Dollar General and put together this mini fake flower arrangement for $5! As much as I love real flowers, fake ones are so much easier to maintain. And they’re an easy way to add a touch of fall to your home!

Crazy thing happened the other day – we came across this gorgeous (FREE) bookshelf!! Paden left it in our living room until we figured out where to put it, and we ended up loving it there so much that we left it. Up until yesterday it didn’t have any fall decorations, but I found this wooden pumpkin at a local fall festival and couldn’t pass it up. They were selling them for 2 for $5! That is a STEAL – and it paired perfectly with the wood in the bookshelf.

As you can see, the curtains are still a work-in-progress, but let’s talk about this COUCH! We snagged this for only $60 off of Facebook marketplace. I had to search for a few days and constantly watch for new posts, but I eventually found someone selling this couch. It was almost brand new. We completely cleaned it and made it look brand new again. My sweet family friends got me the pillow case on the left from Amazon, and it’s the perfect touch to our little couch space.

This coffee table!! $30!!! Another Facebook marketplace steal!! I think this antique white pulls together the theme of the entire apartment. I paired it with a small plastic marble serving tray and my new poached pear candle which I just bought from Target. Even the color of the candle says “FALL” – especially against the white of this coffee table.

I hope you all enjoyed reading this post as much as I enjoyed writing it – and maybe even found a little bit of inspiration for yourself! I can’t wait to write more as the apartment continues to come together. My favorite part about this entire process was learning that seasonal decorating doesn’t have to be expensive – there are so many efficient ways to decorate for the holidays without breaking the bank!

Always remember that your home should reflect YOU. Of course, there are plenty of ways to arrange things and to make it look better…but at the end of the day, do what appeals to your own eye and speaks to your own family/personality. It’ll make the space THAT much better…I promise. Happy fall decorating!

xoxo Alli Tay

anxiety and gut health

happy. healthy. confident…or am I?

happy, healthy, and confident are three words that many people would describe me as.

HAPPY. Generally, I’m in a good mood. I’m “happy”. I smile a lot, I love to make new friends, and to the stranger, it is rare that I wear my bad days on my sleeve. If you don’t know me personally, you would probably assume that most of my days are amazing (and most of them are – don’t get me wrong).

HEALTHY. I’ve always been pretty small. I take after my mom – I’m 5’1, I have a smaller figure, and I am pretty active. I played sports in high school and I occasionally went to the gym throughout college. Judging by my size, many would assume that I am very healthy or “in shape”. Though I do not believe that size determines health in ANY way, this is a comment that I have heard a lot.

CONFIDENT. I’m pretty outgoing. I’m not afraid to put myself out there. I will wear crazy clothes, do crazy things, and always push those around me to be more adventurous. Because of these personality traits, many people have told me that I seem “confident”, or “so content with who I am”. I mean…you’d assume that I was, right?

What people never see is what is under the surface. Sadly, we live in a very surface-level society, where the only thing we see in people is the highlights on their Instagram reel. We choose to look for the best and steer clear of the dark, the dirty, and the hard. For me, this looked like anxiety – crippling anxiety. Anxiety that makes my chest tighten and sends me spiraling downward into a disastrous hurricane of harmful thoughts. My confidence was really a painful fear of acceptance. My health was really an obsession with looking good. My happiness was really a facade so that people liked me. I have only recently come to realize how hindered I have been by allowing my anxiety to control me, rather than me controlling it.

DID YOU KNOW that when you are formed in your mother’s womb, your stomach forms before your brain? Yeah. Crazy, right? That means that for the rest of your life, your gut will always have a strong connection with your brain. To put it simply – what you put into your body will always have a connection with your mental health.

I have NEVER been a healthy eater. Seriously…never. Ask anyone. I love junk food, I love caffeine, ice cream, sweets, carbs – all the unhealthy things!! What I never realized was the effect these damaging foods were having on me, in more ways than just my physical health. They were damaging my mental health, too.

Remember how I said that there’s a strong connection between your gut and your brain? In moments of anxiety, stress, or fear, your mind deceives you into telling yourself that you need “comfort foods”. That looks different for everyone – maybe for you, it’s a basket of french fries or a milkshake. Whatever it may be, you trick yourself into thinking that is what your body “needs”. We could not be more wrong! When we experience anxiety, it is actually our body BEGGING for nutrients – for fruits, greens, and healthy carbs. It is begging for GOOD foods that will help to minimize the harmful chemicals your brain is putting out that fuel your anxiety. Sadly, so many people don’t know this – so when we run to “comfort foods”, thinking they are going to help us, they are actually causing our anxiety and stress to skyrocket! Never in my life did I think that the foods I was ingesting were so closely correlated to the increased periods of anxiety that I had.

For too long, I associated being healthy with being miserable. I mean, does anyone really like salad (no offense to you salad lovers)? I never realized that being healthy could be enjoyable. I never realized that being healthy would not only would help slow down my anxiety, but it would also taste amazing. Earlier this year, I decided that my best weight was going to be whatever weight I was at when I was living the healthiest lifestyle possible that I actually ENJOYED.

And I found it! I found it in products that are vegan, soy free, dairy free, gluten free, cruelty free…and actually taste good! Who doesn’t love a chocolate strawberry shake for lunch – that is GOOD for you?!? Sign me up!!!

Because of my shift to these products, I have become the ACTUAL healthiest, happiest, and most confident version of myself. The words that people say to me are true. Because I have chosen to invest in myself through investing in my health, my life has made a complete 180. And yours could too.

If you want to know more about these life changing products and how they can change YOUR life, feel free to:

-DM my health account on Instagram: @thelazycollegekid

-DM my personal account on Instagram: @allisonyeater

-Message me on FB: @thelazycollegekid OR Allison Yeater

-Check out my health and wellness products on my website: allisonyeater.arbonne.com

Let’s GET healthy and STAY healthy – from the inside out – together. Happy Tuesday!!!!

spicing up your closet (without spending any $$$)

haaaaappy summertime! one of my favorite times of the year (who am i kidding – i feel like every time of the year becomes my favorite time). it’s mostly my favorite because 1. no school! and 2. family time! what a win-win!

sadly, summertime for me also means lot of work (and saving money). how in the world am i supposed to re-vamp my wardrobe when i’m trying to save every penny i get?! it’s easy to become frustrated when your closet feels bland and overworn. that’s why i’m here to give you a few easy tips and tricks to spicing up your style – without spending a dime!!!

my first tip is THE POWER OF BASICS. basic tees, a good pair of jeans or shorts….priceless. use them! try mixing and matching different staple jeans or shorts with different solid color tops. that way, you’ll feel like you’re constantly wearing a different look, but you won’t have to add anything new to add to your closet. try pairing it with a fun pair of sneakers or some bright colored sandals. you’ll feel like a new woman, i promise!

A basic black tee and your favorite jeans can go a long way!! i had to snag both of these from Bershka yesterday.

another great way to spice up your wardrobe is to think outside the box. try coming up with some new ways to style a button up or t-shirt. tuck the shirt in, button it all the way up or leave it open with a cute cami underneath, tie your shirt in the front, cut off the sleeves – do something NEW with something OLD. here are some ways i would style a button up.

be a little crazy!! i have been wearing my button ups BACKWARDS. try something new!
opt for a top-buttoned shirt. it is so chic and fun. this is definitely more of a preppy look!
give it a front tuck with some fun SNEAKERS!

another thing to remember is to ACCESSORIZE. this is so important!!! throwing some hoops earrings on with a tee and some shorts goes a long way. also, the hair tie trend is very in right now, and it’s a great way to dress up your basics.

hoops make everything look great!

try mixing a basic piece with a bold piece. i think it’s such a fun trend to wear a nice blazer with a pair of mom jeans. it is so stylish and relaxed! like i said – get out of your comfort zone. grab that business piece in your closet and pair it a lighter-washed jean.

here’s a white blazer with some straight-legged jeans. how fun and different!

lastly – it’s OKAY to laugh at yourself if it doesn’t work out or the outfit doesn’t pull together like you planned. like me, when i wanted to see what my shirt would look like untucked. definitely a no-go!

if you decide to go out and buy something new, just remember that basics go MUCH further and last much longer than statement pieces. i love a good leopard print shoe or bright and bold accessories, but i try to keep those purchases at a minimum. i am much more likely to get a good use out of my solid color (but flattering!) tee than i am my crazy colored heels. save the statement pieces for a special occasion buy, and make your frequent purchases staple pieces.

if you ever need help putting an outfit together, want me to style you for an event, or just need random fashion advice, i am always an insta message away!!! you can find me on instagram @allisonyeater. happy closet-sprucing, ladies!

xoxo Alli Tay

ethical shopping + the tote project

i’ve had a ton of people message me and ask if i am going to be blogging about ethical clothing – the answer is of COURSE!!!! it is such a huge part of my life that i absolutely love sharing with you guys.

for starters, i want to explain what ethical shopping is and why i support it. about a year and a half ago, i decided i wanted to gradually transform my closet from big name brands to mostly ethical clothing. people always ask me what that even means – GREAT question! for me, shopping ethically is buying clothes either from thrift/secondhand stores, fair trade certified brands, or local/small businesses.

the reason i shop at thrift stores is because it is better for the environment and for people. it produces less waste since we reuse the clothes (thus making their lifetime last longer). not only that but many thrift stores, like miracle hill, give back to the community – that is huge for me! i also shop fair trade because it GUARANTEES that the people that make my clothes are being treated well and paid a fair wage. i shop locally because i love supporting my community and those around me rather than large corporations and CEOs.

if you know me, you know that human trafficking awareness is an issue so near and dear to my heart. if you look up some big name clothing brands you buy from, you’d be shocked to see that many of them indirectly support human trafficking through forced labor and sweatshops in foreign countries. this is something i do NOT want to support.

an app i LOOOOVE is Good On You (linked below). this app tells you where your clothing is coming from. you can research any store on there and they give you all the information you need. the app even gives you suggestions of where you can buy from that is ethical. i so recommend that you download it if you’re curious about what your favorite brands are supporting! after all, we care so much about what’s in our food – why don’t we care just as much about the clothes we wear and the companies we buy from?

so, that’s why i decided to be an ethical shopper – for the most part. the best part about ethical shopping is that the things that i buy MATTER. they tell a story. they support a family or go towards a good cause. that is absolutely priceless. however, i am in NO way a perfect ethical shopper, nor do i claim to be. i still love a good deal on amazon or at target. however, i ALWAYS check to see where my clothes are coming from, and then i decide whether or not i want to take the chance and buy it. i’m not perfect, but i do try my best – and that’s what i think we all should do. it isn’t about NEVER EVER purchasing from a non-ethical shop (though that would be amazing). it isn’t meant to make you feel bad when you buy something online or at the mall. but if we all do our small parts to help others through what we buy, we can make a huge difference.

all of that being said, i am OBSESSED with my new bag from The Tote Project. this amazing brand’s mission is to end slavery through spreading awareness, ethical manufacturing, and giving back. their products are made from different places around the world, but this specific tote was sewn in and dedicated to empowering women in kolkata, india. i’m tearing up just thinking about it!

how adorable is this bag?! this precious little insert is included on the inside. i used the tote for a marketing presentation the other day because i had to carry a TON of stuff around campus and i had plenty of room for everything. i think it would be a perfect beach bag or substitute for grocery bags. it’s so spacious and cute. this tote was gifted to me by my sweet fiancé’s mom!

hope you all have enjoyed this post and learned some more about ethics and fashion – which is what i am ALL about. what is one thing you are going to purchase within the next few weeks that is ethically sourced?! i’d love to know!!!! have the best week ❤

xoxo Alli Tay

tote: https://www.thetoteproject.com/collections/tote-bags

ethical clothing app/website: https://goodonyou.eco

white sunnies (my FAVE accessory!! and they’re only $10) : https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B078MMN5NW/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o06_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

easter outfit ideas

i just LOVE easter sunday! what a sweet day to reflect on our alive and risen savior. spring is becoming one of my favorite times of the year. flowers are blooming, the sun is shining, and i can finally wear dresses and sandals again (without freezing!).

i always find myself wondering what to wear for easter sunday. typically, family pictures are happening, so everyone dresses up a little nicer than usual. this year i found all the easter inspiration i needed at none other than TARGET! i put together a few looks that are modest, affordable, AND fashionable that i wanted to share with you guys. i hope you find some inspiration too!

these striped pants are a favorite of mine. if you’re not really one for dresses and want more of a relaxed look, these pants are the way to go. i paired them with my favorite white boots and a lace long sleeved top, but you could also dress it down with a white sleeveless shirt and some cute platform sandals.

but if you are little more girly, you could not find anything better than this darling floral wrap dress! it IS nursing friendly for all you mommas out there – it crosses in the front but has a hidden button. it has a pretty ruffle detail on the front that adds a nice feminine touch. it is not lined but it isn’t see-through, so no need to worry about anything underneath. i also paired this dress with my white boots (trying to be rachel parcell over here) because it gave it more of a dressy, chic look. for heigh reference, i am 5’1 so it’s a little longer on me, but the length would be perfect for you taller girls.

here’s a close-up of the wrap dress: switched over to some sandals for all of my more casual girls. still looks just as cute!

OUTFIT LINKS:

Striped Pants: https://www.target.com/p/women-s-striped-wide-leg-paperbag-crop-pants-a-new-day-153-navy-white/-/A-54189646 (these are OUT OF STOCK! but look right underneath the look for very similar styles)

White Boots: https://www.target.com/p/women-s-cady-stiletto-sock-booties-a-new-day-153/-/A-53086870?preselect=53018932#lnk=sametab

Floral Dress: https://www.target.com/p/women-s-floral-print-short-sleeve-deep-v-neck-wrap-midi-dress-xhilaration-153/-/A-54260900?preselect=54231712#lnk=sametab

White Sandals: https://www.target.com/p/women-s-annalise-asymmetrical-slide-sandals-shade-shore-153/-/A-53919181?preselect=53833210#lnk=sametab

a day downtown

here it is – a day i have been working towards and waiting for. my FIRST post as a fashion blogger! honestly, this is a dream a little bigger than myself. i’m not 100% sure where it will take me, but i know that wherever that place is, it’s where i want to go.

yesterday i spent the day downtown with my wonderful fiancé. let me tell ya – i LOVE the spring time and the sunshine! i went with some black shorts and one of my favorite shirts (it says “dream big, mija”) and some white nike roshes.

i love the apple watch trend! it is my absolutely favorite accessory and i will not go ANYWHERE without it. here are some links for my outfit:

shirt: https://vivalabonita.com – my shirt is out of stock but they have some other really cute ones. it’s a latina lifestyle brand and one of my FAVES. i have a sweatshirt from there too and i love it.

shoes: https://www.nike.com/t/roshe-one-womens-shoe-ol9k1O/844994-100

shorts: https://tjmaxx.tjx.com/store/jump/product/Juniors-High-Rise-Shorts/1000488782?colorId=NS1003537&pos=1:44&Ntt=black%20shorts These shorts are on sale for $13 right now!!!!

Thanks for reading! I would love to hear if you purchase anything or enjoy this look.

xoxo Alli Tay