J.R. Designs + Giveaway

I've think I've mentioned before how I'm not a huge jewelry person. Not because I don't want to be, I'm just worlds worst at buying jewelry. My mom and sister on the other hand; the best. I think I've asked Kathleen to buy me jewelry for the last several holidays and birthdays. Outside of my everyday pearl studs, watch and tiny gold rings, I rarely stray away. I've been pushing my limits recently and totally jumped on the tassel earring game (way out of my comfort zone). I now have a new jewelry brand that is getting me away from my everyday teeny cross necklace.

I'm so excited to share J.R. Designs with you today. These chic and stylish necklaces are perfect for any outfit, occasion, day or night. I've been throwing mine on with basically everything. Look at me go wearing big jewelry (small applause)!!!

Jordan Richardson, the master designer behind these creations, grew up in OKC and attends SMU for college. I got to meet Jordan last week to chat about her business and all things necklaces.

Jordan started J.R. Designs about a year ago right after she started her freshman year at Southern Methodist University. How she balanced a new business and school is beyond me, but bravo to you girlfriend! After coveting similar necklaces in high end boutiques, Jordan looked past their high end price tags and went to making her own version. 

She didn't start with the intention of it becoming a business, but after wearing her first necklace around campus, girls were flocking toward her design asking for their own. The business formed right in front of her and she ran with it!   

Jordan now makes necklaces in all different shapes, sizes and designs. She is locally based in OKC and Dallas but ships nationwide. The best part of J.R. Designs is the price. The whole reason she started was to avoid dropping $150+ on a necklace, so you can find all of her pieces typically under $50. Music to my ears!!

Now for the part that is probably music to your ears. Jordan was sweet enough to give away one of her unique designs to one lucky Take A Bite reader! Head over to my Instagram to see how to enter!

If you are located in OKC make sure you stop into Gretta Sloane this Thursday, July 21st for a J.R. Designs Trunk Show! Jordan will be selling a slew of necklaces that you won't want to miss. Open from 10am-7pm on Thursday, Gretta will be celebrating their anniversary with food trucks, sales and of course, J.R. Designs!

And now to get to know Jordan and J.R. Designs a little better...

A: How did J.R. Designs get started? Give me some background on your biz?
JR: I started J.R. Designs my first semester of my freshman year at SMU. Because we don't rush at SMU until second semester, I needed a hobby to keep me busy. I have always loved these kinds of necklaces but they were well out of my price range. I searched on Etsy for fun, beaded necklaces but could never find exactly what I wanted. Therefore, I got creative and made my own (the first one being in SMU colors, of course). I wore it to a Boulevard (our version of a tailgate) and received lots of compliments and so many people asking me where I bought it. From there, a business was born! 

I wanted to start selling these necklaces at affordable prices to girls around my age. I originally imagined mostly college girls buying my necklaces, but now my audience includes not only them, but also lots of younger and older girls. People ask me why I don't raise the price of my necklaces, but that is not the reason I make them. By raising the prices, I lose my target audience. My goal was to sell affordable jewelry for people who don't necessarily want to pay $100+ for fashion jewelry, and that is just what I am doing. I love being able to sell people necklaces that they may not have been able to afford otherwise. The best part is hearing feedback from my customers telling me about all of the compliments they get.

A: What does an average jewelry making day look like?
JR: It's not every day that I get to just sit down and make necklaces. Unfortunately, everyday life gets in the way, but I do set aside "necklace making days." I generally buy my beads in bulk and once I have them in my hands, I start making them right away. I sit at my workstation, turn on Netflix, and begin make necklaces for hours. I'm fortunate because I never get bored of it. I enjoy being creative to come up with original pieces, no necklace is ever the same.

A: Had you ever made jewelry before you started JRD?
JR: When I was little I used to make friendship bracelets out of string if you want to count that. Otherwise, no, it is new to me!
(Hello embroidery floss bracelets-my life when I was younger!)

A: What is your favorite J.R. Design you have made? 
JR: I can't pick one necklace in specific, but I love the arrowhead ones. I didn't originally buy the arrowhead stones because my mom didn't like them and told me people would not buy them. Well, this goes to show you that mother doesn't always know best because the arrowheads have ended up being my best sellers! 

A: Starbucks order?
JR: Call me crazy, but I am not a Starbucks fan. In fact, I have never even tried coffee! I know that if I try it once I may get addicted so I'm better off sparing my wallet and not trying it at all.

A: Sweet or salty?
JR: Salty. Don't get me wrong, I love sweets, but I generally find myself craving salty foods. My mom bakes all of the time so I am constantly surrounded by sweets which, oddly enough, makes me crave them less.

A: Favorite show to binge watch on Netflix?
JR: The Office and Gossip Girl...hellooo Chuck Bass and Jim Halpert. Just don't ask me to choose between those two shows, both are addicting! 

A: Favorite bite?
JR: This is a hard one because I love food so much. For the most part I am a healthy eater but all bets are off when it comes to pizza. Also, add this to your list next time you go to Trader Joe's, "Reduced Guilt Guacamole." I can easily go through one a day. Luckily there is a Trader Joe's right by me in Dallas, but for now Tulsa is the closest option. Honestly, the 1.5 hour drive may be worth it.
(I'm impatiently waiting for the OKC location to open in September. Reduced Guilt Guacamole is at the top of my list to purchase once it does!)
 

To order your own J.R. Design you can contact Jordan by email jmrich2010@gmail.com or phone 405-250-7866 (ships nationwide). Make sure to follow her Instagram @j.r.designs for new designs and styles!

Annie

Besos Asos

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XOXO Asos you are killing the shoe game! The targeted marketing we see now is sneaky and it works. I was sifting through pages and pages of clothes on asos.com the other day, then all of a sudden every site I visited had little sidebar and banner ads for Asos popping up. Last week on Facebook a little ad popped up in my newsfeed featuring these shoes. Wahhhhh target marketing you got me. How do you know me so well?

I just got signed up on Try so I quickly ordered them to try and I'm still deciding if I should keep them or not. Amazing and adorable-yes, practical and comfortable-no. Check out more of Asos's killer spring shoes below. At killer prices too might I add. 

I love a good impulse buy, but HELP do I keep or return?

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Annie

Out of the Box

I've got a new one for you, one that takes things slightly out of the box, literally. June Box is bringing a new approach to gift giving. No shopping, wrapping or shipping hassle when you use June Box. The thought and crafting that Carson and Katie Rock have put into June Box makes it a stand out in my eyes. 

Last week I got to sit down with this husband/wife co-founder duo. They greeted me with fresh baked beer bread, and instantly had me hooked. I got the inside scoop on why they started June Box, got to see how each box is put together and hear all about what is ahead for this new company. With a passion for starting their own business, the idea came and they ran with it. They wanted to make the process of gift giving easy. They have found the products, designed the packaging, ship each box and even include a hand written note to make your gift fit each recipient personally and perfectly. 

Since graduating school my friends are spread far and wide. How nice to be able to send a friend a gift for their birthday, when they start a new job, move into a new home, or to just send them a little box of sunshine. 

They have boxes in a range of themes for all of life's occasions. Boxes for your BFF, your bridesmaid, your mom, your boy, the little ones and the furry ones. Getting married? June Box can even handle your welcome gifts for out of town guests.

The products Carson and Katie have rounded up is what makes June Box stand out to me. Each box includes items you would actually use and want. One of my favorite boxes is the You Knead It box. It includes a package of beer bread mix, a tea towel and a butter knife. The perfect thing to send to your friend a few states over who just moved into her first big girl apartment. Biased because I got to try the bread and it's stinking good, but really, you knead it. 

Q&A with Carson and Katie:

Where did you get the name, June Box?  June is the month we got married in, but we also wanted something short, simple and available on social platforms which made us land on "June Box" 

What is June Box’s mantra?  Thoughtfully curated and hand packed gift boxes for all occasions. 

Where do you see June Box going in the future?  Our goal is to make gift giving easier. We want to give people a way to still put thought into their gifts, but have the convenience of online shopping. We are constantly trying to grow our assortment so we have gifts for any occasion you could want to send a box. We're looking forward to a "build a box" option and a full lineup of wedding boxes coming out soon! 

What’s an average day in the June Box world?  On a average day we'll ship out the previous day's boxes (we try to get all boxes delivered within 3 days of your order), update all our social platforms, reach out to new vendors, and continue building out new parts of our website. We also like spending time meeting with future brides and business owners about customized bulk orders at our storefront in OKC (open by appointment only). 

Which is your favorite box?
Carson = "You Knead It" I can't get enough of the Soberdough beer bread mix in this box.
Katie = "RelaxI love the colors of this box, all the products are great, and there are so many occasions to give someone this box! 

Any tips for entrepreneurs?  Go for it! If you have an idea you want to pursue, we'd tell you to jump right in and make it happen. We saved for a year to start this business and Katie still works full time at an oil company while Carson works part time doing consulting. We're excited to be making June Box go from a dream to a reality and for an entrepreneur there is no better feeling than seeing something you've dreamed up actually take shape. So we'd say do what it takes to get your business started as soon as you can! 

Favorite bite?  Carson = Ribs. I love barbeque anywhere, but the ribs at Red Rock Canyon Grill are at the top of my list right now. Katie = chips and queso!

Guilty pleasure?  Carson = AM talk radio/documentaries, I'm kind of a nerd sometimes. Katie = Dancing with the stars. Last season was the first time I had ever watched it, but I'm totally hooked! 

Now for the really fun part. Want a June Box sent to you? Enter the June Box/Take A Bite giveaway for the chance to receive your very on box on your doorstep! June Box is giving away one of their most popular boxes, Ray of Sunshine. Comes from the idea that you can send someone a little sunshine! See below for how to enter!

To enter the giveaway:

1. Follow both @shopjunebox and myself.

2. Tag three friends you would send a June Box to!

Winner will be announced Thursday morning!

Make sure to follow June Box on Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to say up to date with all the JB happenings! 

Annie

Spring Scouting

Hi spring! You are welcomed here with open arms. If you are like me you are so ready for some fresh new spring clothes and products. I'm at that point where I wake up to get ready and everything in my closet is so tired and blah. I'm ready for bright spring colors to come back into my life. A few ways I'm copying with my dreary winter duds is by adding a little color through my bags and accessories. My dear friends at Scout are fueling this fire with their bright and stylish spring line. 

If you know me or have read this blog at all over the past few years, you know my love for Scout and how I spent a summer interning for them. Cue my D.C. Diary posts if you need a recap. They recently launched their new spring collection and I am falling hard for it. The styles are perfectly crafted and the designs are chic as ever. 

My absolute favorite bag/pattern from the new collection is the Golden Girl Grande in Diamond Ink. It has been toted all around town with me the past couple weeks. It's the perfect bag for happy hour drinks or a night out, but casual enough for breakfast with friends. I love a good clutch because you can always throw it into your larger bag and still have everything you need with out having to switch from bag to bag. 

I rounded up more of my favorite styles in my favorite new patterns. Click through to start scouting out your new spring pieces! Take a minute or two to notice each pattern name and bag description. The crew at Scout HQ is insanely witty! They kill me with their punny names such as Fleetwood Black and Reef Witherspoon.  

The BJ Bag // Duffy //  3-Way // Sprit Chillah // Original Deano // Golden Girl Grande // Golden Girl Medio // Pleasure Chest // Trash Cache // Carry'All Bin // Big Draw // Bacall // Nooner // Hang-10 // Two Plate Special // Junque Trunk

Scout is constantly creating and designing more and more functional bags to fit every nitch of your life. From the office to the gym, to your lunch hour to backyard cookouts, to moving to a new house to just taking a weekend trip. When I think they've done it all, they do it again. Hence why my collection is ever growing. Below is just a glimpse at my personal collection, junque trunks, trash cache, deano, 3-way and hang-10 not pictured... #scoutbags #myscoutbag #SCOUTern.

Annie

Tuck It In

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The hair tuck, have you heard of it, have you tried it? I am so all over this trend. The hair tuck takes no products, no blow dryers and really no effort to achieve. All you need is a turtleneck or coat. It's kind of my dream. My mane of hair somehow grew like a weed overnight, so this is the perfect way to tame it. All you gotta do is tuck it in.  

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I'll be over here all tucked in if you need me!

Annie