Spring 2018

21 Things I’ve Learned In 21 Years

By: Marlena Jones

In honor of my 21st birthday this year, I wanted to reflect on all of the things that have helped me make life so wonderful. Here are some of the things I have learned throughout the years that have greatly improved my happiness and outlook on life 🙂

1. ALWAYS stop to pet puppies

cute puppy on couch


I know that may seem like a no brainer but just do it, I promise you it will never fail to make you so so happy. Dogs have an amazing energy and are always so full of life and curiosity. They set a good example to follow in the lesson of life’s simple pleasures. OKAY, and they are insanely cute!!

2. Buy flowers

Flowers in vases in flower shop

Having flowers around makes everything so lively and makes you feel like your home is so put together, especially in spring. Plus they are sooooo beautiful!

3. Live for you

In the end, no matter what anyone else says, you NEED to do what makes you the happiest. You are in charge of making decisions for yourself that benefit you. Do not let others influence your decisions, if it makes you happy, do it.

4. Spend money on experiences, not things

I cannot stress this one enough. We live in a society today that values material possessions very highly. To stay grounded, I like to remind myself that at the end of my life, I won’t be able to take any possessions with me. Instead, I will hold all of the memories and experiences within me, and that is what is truly valuable in life.

5. Be optimistic (most of the time)

We are in charge of our own happiness. It’s absolutely okay to have a bad day every once in a while, but don’t let it consume you.

6. Wear what you want

bold shoes and sunglasses


If you feel good wearing it, wear it! Having your own personal style makes you unique and beautiful.

7. Love your parents

Your parents are the people who love you most in this world. We won’t have them forever so hug them a little extra, buy your mom flowers, spend time with your dad, tell them you love them.

8. Make someone smile everyday

I’ve learned making someone else happy is actually a really good way to make yourself happy.

9. Kindness makes you beautiful 

No matter what you look like, being kind is most important in this world.

10. Grades do not define you or your intelligence 

Some of the most well-rounded and intelligent people I know did not or do not get the best grades in school. Just do your best and work hard, but make sure you are taking care of yourself.

11. Celebrate the small things

Everything deserves a celebration! The more you celebrate the small things, the more there is to celebrate.

12. Put your phone away every once in a while

picnic supplies in bike basket

Don’t get too distracted by social media, likes, and followers. Honestly, it doesn’t really matter. Get out and enjoy the sunshine, have a picnic, visit family 🙂

13. Take care of yourself first

Your mental and physical health come first in every situation. If something or someone isn’t helping you grow, it is 100% okay to eliminate that aspect of your life. You come first!

14. Make time for the people you love 

Support and love those who support and love you! Your support system helps guide you through life, it’s very important to always show appreciation for those wonderful people in your life.

15. Read books

stack of books

Lots and lots of them!

16. Do everything with love

Do everything in a calm and loving manner and the universe will repay you with the same. Putting good energy out into the world will help you attract good energy into your life.

17. Work hard, make it happen!

None of your dreams can become reality unless you work for them. Your life is up to you! You control where you end up in life, you can make it possible.

18. Be the bigger person

Most of the time, what you are fighting over isn’t worth it.

19. Eat well

cute ice cream cones

And I mean EAT WELL, food is fuel and your friend.

20. “Will this matter a few years from now?”

This is what I ask myself every time something bad happens. If I get a bad grade, I have to remind myself that it won’t matter in a few years from now, etc.

21. Love the life you have

This is your one life to experience, love, and live. Make the absolute most of it, every single day.

Photography found on Pinterest

Spring 2018

Spring? Spring, is That You?

Group Shot on a picnic table

Spring is finally here! Well…at least the calendar says so. Montana weather has other plans. We had a couple of really nice days here in Missoula, so we got excited and decided to have our spring shoot. Then, in true Montana fashion, it SNOWED the day of our spring photoshoot. But, the show (photoshoot?) must go on, and we moved the shoot to under a big tent and brought some flowers to make it more spring-y. Hopefully the weather around Missoula (and wherever you are) is warming up soon so we can break out cute spring outfits! Happy spring from us here at Trendsetters at the U!

Erin and Dina posing on a picnic table with flowers and a white tablecloth

Madison and Claire back to back, Claire smiles at her flowers, Madison looks over her shoulder and smiles at Claire

Nancy and Michelle smiling down at their flowers, sitting on a picnic table


Erin leaning against a post, holding flowers

Oh my gosh, everyone. Spring is finally here! Spring is my absolute favorite season, flowers are blooming, birds are chirping, and I am thriving. It’s so nice to be able to sit outside and soak up some sun after a long winter (unless, of course, it decides to snow, which it may or may not have done while we took these photos).

My style is really biased toward spring. I love pastels, light denim, and flowy tops. I am all about floral prints in almost everything I wear. This outfit is a favorite, it’s carefree, comfy, and I can wear it anywhere. The top is from American Eagle, and I love the off the shoulder style, it feels very bohemian. I got the jeans from H&M, and they are high waisted, which I think is so cute! This hat is also a favorite, I got it downtown last fall. I love hats as accessories, especially these wide brimmed styles.

I hope everyone has a lovely spring! Enjoy the sunshine, we all deserve it after a long winter!

Erin looking down at her flowers, holding onto her tan wide brimmed hat and showing off her gold eyeshadow look and white top

Close up of Erin, no hat, flowers all around

Erin looking down at her flowers showing off the little black band around the hat and the lace detailing on the hem of her shirt

Erin holding her flowers and smiling


Nancy walking, holding flowers down by her side and laughing

Spring in Montana means sun dresses, pastels, and the occasional parka! You never know what the weather will be like. You’ll be freezing in the morning and then roasting by lunch time. My tips to spring styles in this temperature confusion are layers (duh) and dresses that feel like blankets… like this little number from Gap! I bought this dress a few weeks ago when Gap was having their additional off clearance sale for a major steal of a deal! Funny enough, it’s actually a size large and before I tie the waist it looks like a cloak! I have to say though, I love the slouchy look of this mauve dress and I’m glad they only had a large for me to choose. This will be a good one to wear on long road trips, lunch dates, and weekend outings this spring. I paired it with my Blowfish booties from Olive + Iron and my trusty American Eagle denim jacket I’ve had since high school. No doubt this isn’t the first time you’ve seen these pieces!

Nancy smiling down at the flowers, leaning against a post

Nancy twirling her dress, flowers in hand

Nancy smiling down, flowers all around

Nancy looking off


Claire posing with the flowers

At last, spring has finally sprung! (kind of) And with that, so has my love for pastels. I’m so excited that this was my first photoshoot with the Trendsetters because to me this season means fresh starts, new beginnings, and rebirth; which is what I attempted to represent with my outfit. Everyone who knows me knows I like a good beret with every outfit, that’s why I picked this cream felted wool beret I got years ago off of Amazon. I’ve also been obsessed with textures these days, so I chose to wear this white ribbed mock turtleneck from H&M with ruffles on the sleeves and neck. For my feet I picked a pair of glossy oxfords I got at Goodwill, I get mesmerized at how shiny they are sometimes… My love for textures is obvious once again by the light blue satin dress I got recently from Laura’s Boutique. It is so comfortable, soft, and effortlessly cute. I have noticed that wearing an outfit with a shiny texture makes me look like I tried twice as hard as I actually did. Happy spring babes!

Claire holding flowers and looking off

Close up of Claire flowers all around. Showing off her gold/orange eyeshadow look and pink lipstick

Claire leaning against a post

Claire posing with her flowers


Dina walking toward the camera, flowers in hand smiling

Another spring season is here.

I am so happy that I get another chance to enjoy spring in the U.S., especially in Missoula, MT.

I have been able to experience all four seasons in Missoula, MT, and spring can be my favorite season after Fall. These two seasons just change people’s eyes with their beautiful colors. Thank God for all His creation.

Another thing that makes me happy is another photoshoot with Trendsetters for spring style.

This photoshoot was so fun for me. Every time I have a photoshoot, it just immediately brings happiness for me. I am so happy that I could spend more time with the Trendsetters. I am an international student at the University and joining this group means a lot to me; that I can spend my time with them and make more friends.

For my outfits in spring, I always wear stockings with short dresses or skirts and long sleeves.

For this photoshoot I wore my beautiful dress with flowers which shows the blossom of flowers in springtime. I got this dress from H&M and my cute blouse I got from T. J. Maxx and it was just $3… Hahaha! I got my black boots that I always wear for spring from Seattle. I forgot the name of the store that I bought them from but, I just got them in January 2018 when I spent my New Year’s Eve there.  I really like this style for spring because it shows how’s beautiful spring is.

Hope you guys enjoy the this spring season…

Dina smiling down at her flowers

Dina on a picnic table smiling

Dina laughing

Dina leaning against a post


Michelle walking, looking down. She wears a light, peach colored dress with a white pattern on it, tan tights and light brown booties

This shoot made me so excited for spring! The sun is finally coming out and I couldn’t be more excited about it! What a great excuse to bring out the sundresses again!

This dress is one of my favorites. The color is easy to pair with, the length is perfect, and it just makes me feel great! The dress is from Forever 21 but was handed down to me in high school my freshman year from a senior I looked up to a lot. Clothes given to me by someone important in my life are always my favorite to wear. The tights are from H&M. They’re a go-to pair for me. The tan color isn’t too bold and doesn’t distract from the rest of the outfit. Plus, they’re kind of thick and good for the cold spring days I’m learning Missoula is full of. These boots I found at a Plato’s Closet in Portland, where I’m from. The arches are fit to someone else’s foot, but that’s the beauty of second-hand shopping! You get to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes! The chokers I’m wearing were a Christmas gift from my sister this past December, and she bought them at a Francesca’s, in Portland as well. My first Trendsetters shoot was great, and I couldn’t imagine a better shoot to start with!

Michelle looking at flowers

Close up of Michelle, you can see her peachy pink lipstick that matches her dress

Michelle smiling, you can see her two chokers: one cream colored and braided leather, one darker tan with a cream pendant

Michelle leaning her head on the picnic table, flowers in hand


Madison looking down at her flowers. Blue patterned loose shorts, black tights, white tee, light denim jacket and black Vans

Spring is by far my favorite time of the year: the weather is perfect, flowers are blooming, and in my opinion it’s the best season to dress for! For this shoot I wore a denim jacket (such a staple piece for the springtime), fun gingham paper bag shorts from Forever 21, and a simple white tee from H&M. With this outfit I would’ve usually gone for a colored  sandal and no tights but it was snowing in Missoula, so I had to stay warm somehow! Now that the snow is finally gone I’m excited to finally wear all the clothes I haven’t been able to  touch for the past couple months, spring has sprung and I’m all here for it!

Close up of Madison, flowers all around. You can see her natural makeup look and her reddish brown bangs fall into her face

Madison laughing, holding up her flowers

Madison looking down at her flowers

Madison looking off

Erin and Dina laughing together on the picnic table

Nancy and Michelle smiling together

Madison with an arm around Claire, sharing a laugh

Group shot of everyone smiling and interacting on the picnic table

Photography by Aleksandra Wąs | @fotografed_