carlina harris

English teacher, style blogger | @allergictovanilla

Valencia, Spain


“grateful for everything, entitled to nothing.”

style blogger Carlina named her blog Allergic to Vanilla as a nod to her obsession with un-vanilla fashion — a taste for the unexpected that extends well beyond style. case in point: in October 2020, Carlina, her husband and their daughter Lucia packed up their San Francisco home and relocated to Valencia, Spain. if that’s not living the life unexpected (and beautiful!) (and decidedly not vanilla), then we don’t know what is. here’s how she does it.

check out her blog here and follow her on instagram here


where do you live?

 “i live in Valencia, Spain, with my husband and daughter, Lucia. we relocated here from San Francisco in October of 2020, mid-pandemic(!), after being accepted into an Auxiliar program where we teach English to students in Spain.”


what do you do — professionally, personally, passionately?

“at the moment i’m on summer break from teaching English to third - sixth graders. i start back up in October. personally and passionately, i fill my time with projects that bring me joy, as my day is on the shorter side with my two-year-old. when she's at school, i work on myself — working out, listening to podcasts, baking, cooking, writing, creating content for my blog Allergic to Vanilla, and getting lost in the alleyways of Valencia.”


what path led you here? 

“i was in influencer marketing before I taught English. i loved the space, i still do! my most recent role was cut due to budget and i was let go, sadly. Lucia was only a few months old when i went back to work, and now i had all this time to be a stay-at-home mom with her, so i did that for a year while figuring out my next move. my husband and i had always talked about moving abroad, and we were both at a cross-roads wondering what was next when i found this program that allowed us to legally live and work in Spain. we applied, got accepted! it was a whirlwind to move across the world during a pandemic, as you can imagine. (i wrote a whole blog post about it!) we've been here for the last nine months and love it. we can definitely see a future here.”


what inspires you and drives you?

“my husband — he is so smart, curious and always wanting better for our family. my daughter, because I want to be better for her and her future. and the Spanish people around me now! they are full of life, passion, confidence and endless love for family. it’s admirable.”


something you’ve learned “on the job”? 

“be kind, stay kind, stay far away from office gossipers.”


how does your blog play into your current job teaching English? 

“you know, it rarely crosses. to be honest, i don’t talk about it much with my students or other teachers, as you can imagine. i do, however, seem to be inspired to create more content for Allergic to Vanilla during my non-work hours to fulfill that creative side of me.”


we are living in crazy — but important, for so many reasons — times. what is life like right now for you? 

“it’s still crazy, problems arise here as well. we still live in a pandemic, and i live very far away from my family and friends. at times i find it hard, but then i remember i made a dream come to life and MOVED TO SPAIN, so it can never stay bad for too long. i feel super blessed to be able to experience this life with my little family here.”


your summer plans in three words? 

“run, beach, travel.”


something you’re doing this summer that you couldn’t last summer? 

“visit new places with my little family! show Lucia the world!”


takeaway from the past year you will keep with you? 

“dress up daily! keep baking — it lifts my spirit.”


piece of époque on current rotation? 

“the mainstay shirt. it’s a classic and super versatile, and also great for hot climates, like in Valencia.”


shop carlina's picks

three random items you can’t live without?

“running shoes. SPF. brow gel.”


three random items you can’t live without?

“running shoes. SPF. brow gel.”


not-so guilty pleasure?

“baking and eating baked goods. i’m obsessed. we can eat a cake in three days or less around here. ;)”



“grateful for everything, entitled to nothing.”