Friday, February 10, 2017

BLANKNYC Faux Leather Jacket

What are your thoughts on leather jackets? They're generally regarded as a staple in any stylish woman's closet and I think they look great on most people. Finding one has been on my fashion to-do list for years. I finally ordered one from Nordstrom on sale a few weeks ago, but when I slipped it on, I felt super cheesy and slightly masculine—like I was headed out to meet my cronies and beat someone up on a street corner. Not the plan. 

Still, my faithful black J.Crew Jackie cardigan (now 30% off!) was wearing a hole in the elbow and after close to ten good years, I needed a replacement—a classic and versatile layer I could wear through all seasons, but something a little less sweet 'n preppy than the Jackie.

This Faux Leather Jacket from BLANKNYC is a blend of both things I wanted—it combines the structure and cool of a traditional leather jacket with the softness and ease of a cardigan—edgy and feminine, in one pretty package. I love that I can wear it all day, as part of an outfit, and cruise right onto a cocktail patio in cooler weather without changing. A regular long-sleeve tee comfortably fits underneath and I'm obsessed with the effortless drape. So happy I found something with a little personality (but still so practical) to boost my boring winter wardrobe—it needed it! 

Hope you have a fun weekend planned! We're going ice fishing on Mille Lacs (I caught a couple crappies my first time out and now I think I'm a stud or something...!), and I'm excited for a long-overdue mani/pedi. Maybe I'll even whip up some pink and red Valentine's Day cookies. Catch you next week! x

Anthropologie tee (ahh! so many cute & elevated basics on the site right now!)
Madewell jeans (my fave for denim)
Kate Spade backpack (similar here and here)
Sam Edelman pumps (on sale for $77. also want these and these for spring!) 

SHOT NOTE: These pics are a little grainy, but we're a work in progress! 
(Chris is a trooper for letting me drag him into this.) 
Thanks for hanging in there while we get into our photo shoot groove. 

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Valentine's Day Wish List

What are your Valentine's Day plans? Chris and I want to keep it low-key this year and we jump at any excuse to eat pizza, so I'm thinking takeout from Station (love the Midwesterner!) and a few indulgent hours of The People v. O.J. We agreed not to exchange gifts—still recovering from Christmas!—and wearing red isn't really my thing, unless it's a go-all-out special-occasion lace dress. But I still enjoy the hearts-and-roses holiday and will put in a little extra effort just for fun with an oxblood manicure, fiery lipstick, floral perfume and over abundance of fancy Champagne-scented candles. Here are a few more pretty little pick-me-ups to enjoy yourself or postmark to girlfriends next week. Sending love! 

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Embroidered Denim

Over the weekend, Chris and I toured Paisley Park, the 65,000-square foot compound in the western Minneapolis suburbs Prince called home. It was pretty unreal to walk the same hallways the mysterious, mythical legend walked just a year ago. I never saw him in real life, and so wish I could've. Not many celebs stick around Minnesota and it's crazy to think about Prince chilling just a few miles down the road from my uptown apartment. 

The tour lasted about an hour. The baby blue Bentley, club, countless guitars, Grammys, studios and sound stage were cool—and you could even sample the pancakes Prince famously served at parties—but his costumes were my favorite part. Something about seeing the actual garments he wore was really magical, and about as close to the icon as I'll ever be. Custom fit for someone half my size (seriously—these clothes were TINY!), the intricately patterned, embroidered and bedazzled blouses, suits and heeled boots seemed to vibrate with talent, stories and secrets. 

Wandering through the wardrobe displays, I was reminded of this Vogue story on fall's embroidery trend and the growing desire for clothing with an artisanal, hand-made feel. "Most people don't regularly get to wear embroidered Valentino gowns or Gucci blazers, so a little embroidery on a pair of cutoffs or a t-shirt is a playful nod to couture," says Tessa Perlow. "It just makes a piece feel personal and extra-special." 

Prince's fashions might have been a little out there, but they were undeniably him. Undeniably special. Embroidered denim gives you a taste of that custom, one-of-a kind look—so much cooler than unadorned blue jeans pulled off the rack at any anonymous department store, and still so wearable. It's refreshing to look a little different than everyone else, isn't it?—something Prince probably would've appreciated. Style yours with a simple bodysuit and sleek mules to balance the look.

one | two | three 

Friday, January 27, 2017

My Nightstand: Gel Moisturizer

FRIYAY! This week was sneakily busy, and I haven't been getting much sleep. I was randomly awake until 3AM on Monday and had to force myself to finally close my eyes at midnight Tuesday and Wednesday. Some days there doesn't seem to be enough time to do everything and fully unwind before getting up and starting all over again. 

 Hopefully this sleep schedule doesn't continue, but in the meantime, I'm counting on my skincare regimen to save me from looking like a total zombie. A few weeks ago, I got a makeover at Sephora (here's the recap if you missed it!). I told the consultant that my cheeks get really dry and flaky in the winter and she prescribed Algenist SPLASH Replenishing Gel Moisturizer—a beautiful, silky blue gel. Cooling and soothing, it just sunk into my skin. I wanted to buy it that day, but held off because of the $58 price tag. I'm glad I did—I since read an article (I think on Byrdie, but I can't find it now!) about how you should stop overpaying for moisturizers, cleansers and SPF because the drugstore versions typically do the trick. 

So, I swung through Target and excitedly picked up Neutrogena's new Hydro Boost Water Gel. It's packed with hyaluronic acid to moisturize from the inside out, delivering that plump, dewy skin we all want. The same sky-blue as the Algenist formula (and in a pretty, luxe pot!), it's lightweight and so refreshing—and my skin feels hydrated all day. Thirst: quenched! I've even seen some sites recommend lightly sweeping it over your makeup for a glowy finish. Love a multipurpose product! And at only $17.99, I feel good about committing to it. I'm also super excited to use this once summer rolls around, when my combination skin gets oily in the T-zone. More absorbent than heavier cremes, it'll keep me from looking too shiny throughout the day—the worst. 

I'm a total gel moisturizer convert—and feel pretty savvy for finding this drugstore deal. If you're interested in test-driving one or two yourself, click through my picks at a range of price points right here.

P.S. I'm also using the Hydro Boost Cleanser!—very purifying without drying out my complexion. 
And—if you are super dry this time of year, I suggest trying the Hydro Boost Gel-Cream instead of the Water Gel. 

shop all Neutrogena Hydro Boost | shop all gel moisturizers at Sephora

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

10 Things You Might Not Know About Me

You know those group ice breakers where you're forced to share a fun fact about yourself? Not my forte. I feel like I resort to the lamest stats, like how I broke my nose in high school, which really says nothing about who I am. It's HARD to boil yourself down to a few words! I've always focused more on things and trends than myself on this blog—it's easier, after all—but starting today I'm making an effort to get more personal! I really missed blogging during the little break I took last year, and as I slowly ramp back up, I want to improve and grow. The blogs I like best are those that offer a look at the writer's real life, beyond the bags and OTK boots. So, I'm excited to start letting you in on what's happening in my day-to-day a little more! And to lay the groundwork, here are 10 little tidbits you might not know about me. Take a gander and enjoy your Tuesday!

1. I graduated from the University of Iowa (go Hawks!) where I double-majored in Journalism & Mass Comm and English. I was my sorority's Director of Finance and studied abroad in Scotland during my junior year.

2. Manicures are my necessary indulgence. Essie Meet Me at Sunset and Deborah Lippmann Naked are two long-time favorite shades.

3. I work as a copywriter for a beauty brand. My proudest accomplishment since starting in March is writing the autumn/winter 2017 collection book (stay tuned!)—a task that totally intimidated me.

4. I'm obsessed with homemade hummus, broccoli on pizza and my ideal breakfast is a smoothie and a couple no-bake energy bites. I'm not much of a chef, and prefer to make meals with five ingredients or less (it can be done!).

5. I'm a reality TV fan (yes, #PumpRules!), could read these interviews on The New Potato all day and I always have Good Morning America on in the background while getting ready for work.

6. I've been dating my boyfriend, Chris, for a year. We met at our company holiday party last December and instantly bonded over our shared goal to see local live music every month. And he was pretty cute.

7. The best concert I've been to was Bleachers when I lived in Madison, WI—and I went by myself! #independentAries

8. Machu Picchu and Alaska are on my travel bucket list.

9. I am NOT a morning person. I always wake up for work at the last minute, but feel infinitely better if I'm able to get a workout in right away.

10. I spent summers growing up at my grandparents' lake home in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan—I've always been a water baby and being at the lake is my happy place.

Random bonus fact: I can't stand white sunglasses! Questions? Comments?
Tell me below, let's be friends!