adding ginger to your sass

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My Modeling Debut

BlogHer’13 was amazing. I left feeling very tranquil and at peace, and I’m already missing the lovely ladies I spent time with this weekend.

The BlogHer'13 Models. Photo courtesy of Danielle Tsi photography and

The BlogHer’13 Models. Photo courtesy of Danielle Tsi photography and

Much to my amazement, I made my BlogHer modeling debut on Saturday and I didn’t fall on my face. I didn’t vomit on stage. I didn’t fall over in the dressing room trying to put Spanx on.

Instead, I met an amazing group of diverse women I never would have met otherwise. We all, for the most part, stepped outside our comfort zones and wore things we maybe never would have worn or had our hair and makeup done in ways we didn’t know it could be done.

The Wifi struggle. Photo courtesy of Danielle Tsi photography and

The Wifi struggle. Photo courtesy of Danielle Tsi photography and

We bonded over our opinions of high fashion, the overall consensus that “the models need wine,” and the horrifying fact that the hotel basement where we got ready didn’t have wifi. (Gasp!)

During my fitting on Thursday afternoon, I definitely felt like a self-conscious Barbie doll. I tried on probably close to 7 or 8 different outfits, dozens of pieces of jewelry, and felt a bit vulnerable to the amazing stylists trying to find a look for me. We laughed and joked around, but it felt bizarre to casually be trying on outfits for a couple of strangers. I didn’t know what I would be wearing until the day of the show, although I was kind of rooting for a red ball gown that made me feel like a princess.

On the afternoon of the show, after practicing walking the runway and being very self-aware of how I was walking, I found out I’d be wearing the last outfit I had tried on during my fitting– a leopard print shirt from Vive La Femme, Levi dark denim jeans, a Mint Julep denim jacket, a cute necklace from Comfort Me, and cute golden kitten heel pumps from A Pied.

Photo Credit: The BlogHer ’13 Fashion Show brought to you by Ulta.

Photo Credit: The BlogHer ’13 Fashion Show brought to you by Ulta.


I wasn’t sure what to expect with the show, but my experience was a whirlwind of excitement and amazingness. Ulta had a really phenomenal team of hair and makeup stylists making each of us “models” feel like a million bucks. They made my hair curly like a pin-up girl’s, and they did a really incredible job of doing my makeup. The whole process reminded me of my 13 years of dance recitals and the hours it would take to get ready for those, only with less hair spray.

Right before the show, I felt like  completely different person. I didn’t look like the “me” I’ve become slightly critical of lately, and I was wearing a skin tight outfit that actually looked decent on me. (Thank you, Spanx!) More than once I was told I looked “sassy” and “badass,” which were definitely fun ways to be described.

As I stepped out onto the stage, something came over me. I lost any inhibitions I had felt about being in the show, and I had a genuinely good time walking the runway. I goofed around a bit with a silly pose, and the crowd went wild. I heard an insane amount of cheering, and although I couldn’t see anyone with all of the flashes going off, I knew that my friends and favorite bloggers were standing there cheering me on.

Going to BlogHer is an incredibly empowering and gratifying feeling in itself. Being in the BlogHer Fashion Show took this feeling to an entirely new level. I can’t even begin to put into words what a difference the show made in my life and self-image, and I will be forever grateful that I had the courage to say yes to Elisa when she asked me to be a model.

A special thanks goes out to Darlene, Sarissa, Rafiki, and Iman for putting so much work and effort into the Fashion Show! You ladies are an amazing team and definitely made me feel like a million dollars!

We’re he-eerrrre.

Taylor and I have arrived in Chicago for BlogHer’13! We’ve been here a few hours, and the afternoon/ evening has already included:

Staring at the beautiful view from our hotel room

Chicago water front view from sheraton


Taylor introducing me to/ me trying my very first Chicago deep dish pizza

chicago deep dish pizza

Me taking tourist-y photos of the BlogHer banners covering the city of Chicago

blogher chicago


I also just had my fitting for the BlogHer’13 fashion show, which was a fun experience.

Right now we’re relaxing in our hotel room before heading out for an evening of fun.

I can’t guarantee I’ll be updating during the conference, but one thing’s for sure—

we’re ready to take Chicago by storm.

Be sure to follow me on Twitter (@THEGingerSass), Facebook , and Instagram so you can stay up to date on my wanderings in Chicago!



Dear newbs

Dear BlogHer newbies,

Last year I was one of you. I had just started blogging regularly, and I was super duper excited to be going to BlogHer’12 in NYC, just a (theoretical) skip and hop away from Jersey. I went completely unsure of myself, not really knowing what to anticipate, and feeling like an awkward redheaded teen in the middle of puberty on the first day of high school.

It was kind of like looking like this in high school, except I wasn't 14 year old me dressed up as Napoleon Dynamite for Halloween.

It was kind of like looking like this in high school, except I wasn’t 15 year old me dressed up as Napoleon Dynamite for Halloween.

If you’re anything like I was last year, you’re following the #BlogHer13 hashtag, joining every possible Facebook group you can find, and super nervous and unsure if you’re worthy of going to BlogHer.

You might also have noticed that there are some nice groups, and some not-so-nice groups.

The nice groups are full of extremely friendly people, words of wisdom, people forming nonsensical inside jokes, and lots of “Don’t worry!” posts.

The not-so-nice groups are full of the blogging Plastics.

Plastics, Mean Girls

While I haven’t seen too many in the groups I belong to, they’re the ones who are constantly making others feel bad about not getting private party invites, not having a bajillion likes, fans, or followers, or not being paid bloggers.

The number of Plastics at BlogHer is so teeny tiny it’s not worth worrying about. Seriously.

Don’t sweat it if you’re not invited to a private party. Don’t freak out if (gasp) you have to pay for your own ticket, airfare, and hotel at BlogHer. Don’t be upset if only your mom and your best friend read your blog.

BlogHer is about meeting people, living life, and indulging in a life changing experience. You will leave BlogHer feeling exhausted, slightly hung over (unless you’re pregnant. Then totes give me your drink tickets.), and inexplicably fulfilled. You don’t need to be known by 50,000 people by the end of the conference. Set out to meet one new friend, and you’ll end up with a ton.

My biggest regret from my first BlogHer is not savoring it more. I worried too much about private parties and what others thought of me. I was self-conscious and convinced everyone knew that I was the new kid on the block. (And not in a cute Joey McIntyre sort of way!) My plan for this year’s BlogHer is to embrace as many BlogHer parties as possible, meet up with some of my favorite bloggers, and go home feeling like all is right in the world. I’m already starting to feel like I’ve regained my sense of direction and I haven’t even started packing for BlogHer yet!

So don’t worry. Don’t fret. Take a deep breath. Everything will be fine, and your BlogHer experience will be as fabulous as you make it. If you have a momentary freak out and need a hug, find me at the conference, and as long as my arms aren’t filled with three bags, a plate, and a a drink that can spill, I will welcome you with open arms.



(You can probably track me at BlogHer by tweeting me @THEGingerSass. Muahz.) 

This is what I look like when I have a headshot taken for grad school and insert a BlogHer thingy in the corner.

This is what I look like when I have a headshot taken for grad school and insert a BlogHer thingy in the corner.