2017 Recap

2017 was a year that felt surreal, and not in the best way. It seems like this has been the case for many, but for me it was a year that went quick and I'm glad it did. At the end of 2016, I began journaling and dreaming up what 2017 would look like with a few things I envisioned happening. They definitely started to happen, just not in the way I had thought...

Here's a few highlights from the year, along with some challenges I faced:


Entering 2017 having just finished being a part of this video, "Perfect Illusion" Lady Gaga, was quite a surprise. I got a blind casting and got called in the next morning for a secret video shoot to dance and I thought, "I really don't feel like giving 12 hours of my night right now..." but went anyway, and it was such an incredible project to be a part of. I slowly felt music creeping back into my life and it was a great way to start the year. 

2017 Recap // Mel Denisse
2017 Recap // Mel Denisse

Spent February in NYC for Fashion Week and my Birthday. It was my 3rd year attending, and while it was such a great experience again, I was beginning to feel the exhaustion of the past year hitting me. When I returned to LA, I had to quickly begin prepping to move. 

Had a staycation with Immunocologie at the Langham Hotel with some incredible women for a weekend in March. 

Had a staycation with Immunocologie at the Langham Hotel with some incredible women for a weekend in March. 

2017 Recap // Mel Denisse
2017 Recap // Mel Denisse

Second year for Coachella- always the most fun, unpredictable, exhausting weekend all in one. Got to work with some incredible people and see old and new friends before getting away to Europe!

2017 Recap // Mel Denisse
2017 Recap // Mel Denisse

Jetted off to Istanbul and celebrated my beautiful cousin's wedding and spent 2 weeks with family.

2017 Recap // Mel Denisse
2017 Recap // Mel Denisse

Next stop was London. A place I've felt connected to for years, and had been waiting to experience. Originally I was planning to go for Fashion week, but ended up pushing the trip to April, and it was beautiful to spend it with no agenda other than exploration. The idea of moving there has always been in the back of my mind along with NYC, so I can't wait for more opportunities in this great city. 

2017 Recap // Mel Denisse
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2017 Recap // Mel Denisse

The first half of the year felt like a tornado of events. From moving, to traveling, to Airbnb's for a month (because my new apartment wasn't ready), to finally moving in, in April. I only settled in for a few days before it was time to leave again for Coachella, Turkey, then London until May. Before I knew it, it was Summer.

2017 Recap // Mel Denisse
2017 Recap // Mel Denisse

Getaway to Miramonte Hotel in Palm Springs to kick off the summer. 

During the summer, I was in the beginning stages of recording my new single (going back into the studio for the first time in 10 years) and starting up as many writing sessions as I could. It's something I had been waiting for, and with the emotional events of the year, I felt catapulted into the studio with such a sense of vulnerability and readiness. It was on my list of to-do's this year, and before I knew it, it became my cave for 7 months upon completing the song in December. 

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Writing and recording this song was my healing place and my hope for creating something beautiful out of such a difficult year. 

2017 has certainly been a theme of dependency, trust, and learning joy all in a completely new, deeper way. I can honestly say that it's been incredible, yet one of the most difficult years I've experienced. Looking at 2018, I'm feeling more at home within LA and the pace of my life. I'm excited to continue this blog, along with a deeper focus on my music. I'm so incredibly thankful for all of you that have read my blog, followed along in Insta, and have supported anywhere else. Looking forward to a new 2018!

2017 Recap // Mel Denisse
2017 Recap // Mel Denisse

Coming January 8, 2018:

2017 Recap // Mel Denisse

NYE Outfit 2018

2018 is around the corner... and I know people probably say this a lot, but 2017 really did feel like the fastest year. I remember each month like it was yesterday. As the 31st is approaching, I wanted to share one of my favorite outfit picks for the night's festivities with: comfort, edgy, and dressy all in one. Take a peek below and have a happy NYE! 

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5 Keys To Dream Big For 2017

The more passion people have for the work that they do, the more likely they are to demonstrate positive energy and success in life.
— Terri Funk Graham

2016... what a year it's been. I wanted to encourage you today that if you didn't have the best year or you're glad it's finally over– there's a few things you can do to kickstart a great way to dream again and step into 2017 with a successful mindset. 

For the past few years, I've grown more intentional than ever in seeing my dreams come true and taking risks in the things I want to see happen in my life. 2016 has put that to the ultimate test for me since it's been a process of going freelance, moving to a new city, and doing a lot of things where (tbh) I had no idea what I was doing. Stepping into your dream career or dreams takes a lot of trial and error, while seeking wisdom from those around you. It's taken courage to believe and faith to go beyond what I could see or think was possible, until I saw that it was possible. 

I get asked often about how I started my blog and how I got to where I am today. I believe it's a personal process for each person and it starts with 1. knowing who you are, 2. what you're passionate about 3. and learning how to use fear to your advantage and risk with wisdom. From day 1 to now, I'm still making mistakes and trying things I have no idea how to do, but I'm doing them with the knowing that this is what I love to do and I'm getting that much closer to learning. Instead of a fear of failure, I love the process of continuously learning, growing, and encouraging someone else along the way whether you know it or not.  

Below are five keys that have helped me reach goals in my life– in career, relationships, and overall with myself. I hope they can also help you start your new year great. 


1. Write Them down

I wrote the things I wanted to accomplish and work towards– but I was also challenged to write things that were hard to believe for.

I've always loved journaling, but ever since I got real about what I wanted to see happen in my life, I started making a list before the beginning of each year. (Sounds basic, but it is THE basics for greatness.) I wrote the things I wanted to accomplish and work towards– and I was also challenged to write things that were hard to believe for. This was to stretch myself regarding long term goals, but I do recommend staying within practical goals for that year.  Forbes has a great article on why it's important to write your goals here that I love as well. It helped to create focus, vision, and a path. Every year is an opportunity to see just how much you're capable of, and a list can be a trophy piece that helped create that history in your life. 

I remember the first time I wrote down "Attend Fashion Week." I knew nothing about FW, how to get involved, or what to expect. I just knew that I wrote it down and no matter what, I was going to go. I only had a few contacts at the time, and I told myself that even if I didn't get to experience much or even attend a show, I was going to be in the city and 'get my feet wet.' I was going to risk meeting new people, attend a few events (alone sometimes), and simply immerse myself in a world I knew I was meant to be a part of and was confident that each year would get better and better.


2. Get Around People Who Are Where You Want To Be

Part of stepping into greatness is letting others in and not doing it alone.

It's so strengthening to have people that are not only ahead of you, but to have people you get to pour into with what you're learning as well. Let people who've walked those hard walks shed wisdom into your process. And be honest about not only your successes but your challenges. Part of stepping into greatness is letting others in and not doing it alone. 


3. It Takes Work

You have to grow passionate about learning and taking the time to master your craft or skill.

It's great to write down the things you want to see happen, but now comes the hard part: working for it. Throughout my blogging career, I had countless nights researching and learning everything from SEO, marketing, photography, various business etiquette in jobs, how to brand myself, etc etc etc. The list never ends and it never will. You have to grow passionate about learning and taking the time to master your craft or skill. This doesn't mean it has to be perfect before you make your debut, but it means the more you're stepping out, the more you need to dedicate time to learning and honing in your skills. I love that I started out when I did because even though I didn't quite know what I was doing, I can look back on those posts and see how far I've come. Not only did this help me see the growth in my life, but I also like to look at what others are doing in my industry– what skills they've learned to adopt and how I can learn from that too. 


4. Try something new each month

Let spontaneity be a norm in your life.

It's so easy to get into the same routine every day– but it's refreshing for the mind and heart when you try new things, see new places... anything that's not your ordinary. Those very things– those little moments will keep courage active in your life. It'll also prevent the rut of boredom in the midst of doing your every day passions. Let spontaneity  be a norm in your life. 


5. Give Yourself Grace

Part of success and happiness is not being afraid to feel the low moments.

Sometimes there's moments where you feel like you're in over your head, you don't know what you're doing, or things aren't going as planned. We all know those waves- but it's how we deal with those waves that allows us to ride smoothly. And just for the record, they're a normal part of it. If you need to feel overwhelmed, feel it. Self-awareness is vital for our health and creativity to flow peacefully. Part of success and happiness is not being afraid to feel the low moments. They're a part of the process and it doesn't mean you've failed. You're simply growing, so give them value and let them be a part of your life. 


All in all, I hope that you're just as excited as I am for the new year. I've made my list and I'm joyfully expectant for great things, feeling the anticipation of risking even greater, and yes I've already had moments where I've thought to myself, "I'm dreaming too big! How can I possibly do this?..." But that's what we call a good problem to have. I always want to be stretched and challenged to the next level. I've seen great things happen in 2016, but I don't want to be complacent and stay in 2016. So, cheers and see you in the new year!