Thursday, January 29, 2015

give a little love

In sixth grade, a boy gave me a teddy bear at school, which was a Very Big Deal. Sophomore year of college, I got a sweet card from someone I'd end up dating for the next several years asking me to a date party (also a big deal since I apparently didn't send my response soon enough, making him sweat all day). And the following year, I bopped around London pubs on a Strongbow buzz midway through my study abroad stint. Other than those few flashbacks, I haven't had particularly memorable Valentine's Days—which I don't say with any self-pity, since there's always been plenty of love in my life. While there's overarching pressure to be in a romantic relationship on February 14 (and in general at this age!), I enjoy just having fun with the holiday, sending snail mail and small gifts to the people who mean the most to me every day of the year. It's about time to start post-marking those love letters, so I corralled a few treats to inspire your own metaphorical Sonnet 116: nothing overtly love-themed, but small tokens that express that very sentiment. I can't wait to try this drugstore primer after reading this review, and these simple magnetic frames are great for the fridge. Lyrical poetry on this candle that belongs on her nightstand or bathroom vanity takes the sensuality of a pretty scent to the next level, and chunky artichoke pesto spread on a crispy baguette is a delicious gourmet snack whether she's hosting or hunkering down solo. Start channeling Cupid and shop all of my picks below! xo


center image via

Friday, January 23, 2015

hot now 5

I buy a new bag every few years. I carried an ivory tasseled Cole Haan in college, and have hauled around a J.Crew Brompton hobo since Christmas 2012. This casually sophisticated Madewell bucket bag is giving me the itch to make another switch (it's no Mansur Gavriel, but it's still good!). I prefer logo-less, simple designs and the leather beaut is cleanly constructed and beautifully anonymous. $300 is typically my spending cap, and at $198, it's comfortably under budget. It has that relaxed, slightly slouchy look perfect for an everyday carryall, with enough structure to look neat and pulled-together. The long, adjustable strap gives you that chill bucket look, while a rolled top handle lets you hang it from your shoulder when you want a tighter grip on your things. I'm escaping to Chicago this weekend (an all-too familiar tale!) to refill on good friends and good food, and might have to swing by the Rush Street store to pick up this baby in person! Hope you have a fantastic weekend! (P.S. Breaking "brand" and trying out some new creative below—it's no fun being boxed-in!)

image via


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

january short list

Hello lovely readers! Sorry for the radio silence; I've been busy with work and lacking inspiration lately. Although it started with the fun wedding of a good friend, January is kind of a blah month for me—and as awful as it sounds, I'm ready for it to be over! I know it's important to live in the present, but sometimes, it's what's coming around the corner that keeps me going (can you relate?!). Below: what I'm wearing, eating, buying and pondering to make the first month of 2015 better when I'm blinded by a reality that is still a little out of reach (but not for much longer!). Keeping my eye on the prize. Hope your year is off to a happy, healthy start!

1 | Essie Ballet Slippers: Normally a dark lacquer lover, I'm repeatedly turning to this girly, pearly pink that lightens my look and my mood. 
2 | Shashi jewelry: The juxtaposition of bright beads and tassels with classic solitaire stones and delicate chains makes this affordably-priced, handcrafted jewelry the kind you can wear anywhere. 
3 | Chocolate Chia Smoothie: I'm a freak about getting a full day's worth of nutrients, and with almond milk, baby spinach and banana in this tasty breakfast blend, I'm off to a strong start. 
4 | Trust: I've admittedly questioned—and at times regretted—a decision that when made felt SO RIGHT (sorry for the vagueness), but am trying to remember that no hard work is for naught. 
5 | Hair: At the Golden Globes, Camilla Alves showed off the elusive ecaille highlights I'm forever chasing—scheduling a session with my stylist stat! 
6 | Facial spray: Lucy Hale's stunning skin is a little closer with this aloe, herb and rosewater mist; pulling it out of my purse for a quick hit of hydration feels so movie star.
7 | NARS Charlotte: Lipstick isn't an autopilot part of my morning, despite always feeling more confident and pulled together with a painted pout. Slowly growing my stockpile with dramatic burgundy. 
8 | Bleachers: I canNOT get enough of Jack Antonoff's indie pop band and promptly purchased tickets when I saw they're stopping by Madison this spring. Like a River Runs and Reckless Love are two of my favorite tracks, but the whole album gets tons of air time whenever I'm driving, working, running or just relaxing. 
9 | Floral sneakers: This warm weather is filling me with energy and fantasies of tossing my Bean boots to the wayside—running around town in these colorful kicks makes me feel both stylish and unstoppable. 
10 | Fedora: Hats are not in my wheelhouse, but with the new year (and new plans I have brewing), I'm craving reinvention, and the subtle mystery and screw-playing-it-safe attitude of a floppy fedora is my new true north (more options).