Tuesday, April 30, 2013

A Note to the 2013 Graduates

Congrats Grad
Dear 2013 Graduates,

You made it! You graduated, unscathed, degree in hand, and are off into that real world you've heard so much about. Cheers to that! I have been reflecting on the past year of my life as a member of the "real world" and have a few thoughts... or rather, things that I have learned this past year that I wish someone would have told me. So, here we go with the details. Please note this is meant to be tongue-in-cheek (my real reflection will be shortly following)...
  • Post-graduation is like a bad breakup. You knew you had to graduate, you saw it coming, everyone is graduating too... but somehow, that month after college passes and all of the sudden it's like WOAH!  That whole, get a job thing... yeah that's real... what they didn't tell you is that you have to wake up at 6:00am for FIVE days of the week... maybe even more depending on the profession you choose. And you thought they were kidding?! 
  • Speaking of getting up at 6:00am... that whole roll out of bed, brush your teeth, comb your hair routine you've got going on. Not exactly going to cut it. You have to look polished and professional... everyday
  • If you live with your parents for at least a few months/year after graduation, you will be able to afford shoes, clothing, and spending money. If not... well, I wish you luck. 
  • In the "real world" there is a three letter word that doesn't seem to exist. N-A-P. It's like asking for a Big Mac at Burger King. 
  • That first paycheck will have you feeling like Princess Kate. After a few more, you'll realize why it's not you who is living in that castle.
  • Those costume themed parties you used to go to? That's another Big Mac at Burger King ordeal. Sad, I know. 
  • Everyone categorizes your 20's as a selfish time period... well, you might as well live up to it. Go get that mani/pedi and that new tote, too. But really... 
  • Burnetts, Andre, Oak Leaf, etc... People in the real world don't drink that. They just don't. Once you walk across that stage with your diploma in hand, vow to never buy another gross bottle of liquor/wine/champagne. You drank it for 4 years, that's plenty. 
  • Work clothes are ugly and frumpy. Get ahead of the ugly game and find a good tailor. Seriously, they are little fairies who work magic... not to be confused with Tinkerbell, she can't (and probably won't) help you. 
  • When you visit your friends from college, it is still not acceptable to drink Andre and Burnett's. You've been warned. 
  • There is a reason Happy Hour is not named Happy Hours. One hour of happy and you'll be ready for bed. 
  • So, it's cool that you have a college degree and all. It may even make you feel smart and successful... Until you meet someone who has 4 billion other degrees. Not so smart now, are you? 
  • Once you graduate, you don't miraculously know how to cook. It's a myth. Stinks, I know! 
Ok, so I've made post-grad life sound a tad on the miserable side, but this I promise you: it's not! Remember how I compared it to a bad breakup? Well hopefully, you have gotten over all of your bad breakups in the past... If not, you're on your own. Have a fabulous day! 

Monday, April 29, 2013

Navajo Alternatives

In the summer, I pretty much wear two types of shoes: Stephen Bonannos/Jack Rogers or espadrille wedges. In fact, I would say 5 out of 7 days are spent in the Navajo variety. Now that I am in the "real world" sandals/wedges are not always an appropriate option so I have also added some cute flats into my shoe repertoire. 

Since I wear my Bonanno's/Jacks so often, I am always looking for an alternative that keeps with the same clean, classic look. Well, where did I find an alternative? Victoria's Secret, of all places! 

Adorable, right? Even better? At $68, they are gentle on your pocket book. I'm eyeing the bright pink as well as the white. Don't they remind you of a Canfora's? Have a fabulous day! 

Sunday, April 28, 2013

The Perfect Fourth of July Top

If this isn't the most adorably perfect top for July 4th, then I don't know what is! Too fabulous not to share! Have a fabulous day! 

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Finals Week Motivation

Failure is not an option.

For those of you currently in the midst of the "F" word, I wish you nothing but the very best. Below is a roundup of study tips and Summer Wind motivation. 

Have a fabulous day and study hard! 

Friday, April 26, 2013

Chris Matthews Spoofs

Have you seen these politically comical spoofs by Chris Matthews on current TV shows? They are quite funny and very creative.. definitely worth watching. I, of course, love the above Mad Men intro.

He also created a Downton Abbey version too for those of you that can't get enough of the show... Next on the docket? No idea, but I think he should do a Real Housewives or Gossip Girl version... wouldn't that be a hoot?! Have a fabulous day! 

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Dressing Your Age?

Oh Shift
I do not dress my age. I am not trendy. These are two things that I love about myself. I love that I don't dress like a typical 23 year old, traipsing out at night in sky high heels, a too-short skirt, and low cut blouse. It's not for me and never has been. 

I am also not one to wear trends. Sure, I follow them, sure I know what is on-trend... I read Voge, Elle, W, etc. I just don't try to pull them off... well, usually. 

As we draw closer and closer to the summer months, I have been spending weekend afternoons slowly pulling out my summer wardrobe and putting all of the chunky wool sweaters into storage (thank goodness). Every year as I switch over seasons, I do a bit of an inventory. I try things on, pull things that need to be taken in or let out, donate things that I am no longer interested in, and take note of what I am lacking and what I am most definitely not lacking. 

Every single year, I always notice that I am lacking a "young 20's wardrobe". I find that I never have anything that falls under the "going out to a bar" category. 

I have always put that in the back of my mind, and occasionally  when I'm shopping, I'll purchase something oddly out of my comfort zone just so I can add to my collection of (for lack of a better word) "hot" outfits... ahem, if you know me in real life, my "hot" outfits are about as G rated as they come. More, Kelly Rippa than Megan Fox, if you will. See above for one of my "hot outfits". 

Anyways, this time, as I was taking note on my lack of "going out" pieces, I came to a realization. I just don't care and I never will. Why try to wear something that is not "me"? Why try to wear something that I saw in a magazine or blog when it is so short that I can barely sit down? 

So for my 23rd year, I have resolved to wear my Lilly shifts to bars; don my pearls at the next Dave Matthews concert, sport those go-to-hell pants on my next date, and not care if everyone is looking at me like "who is that 50 year old from the Country Club". Rather, I am going to own it and not care that I don't "fit in" with the rest of my peers. 

Have you ever felt out of place because of the way you dress? If you're in the 18-30 age range, have you ever felt that you are "supposed to" dress a certain way when "out on the town"? Have a fabulous day! 


Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Juicy Couture Goodies

The other day I was online shopping browsing and I stumbled upon a gem of an iPhone case (in pink or purple). I love that palm leaf print-- so Palm Beach chic and so very perfect for summer. With a little more browsing, I found that it is Juicy Couture. Right now, they have a bevvy of products that boast the pretty, tropical print like a super cute scarf,,  iPad case and duffel

Palm Leaf Print
So cute, right?! I'm actually quite embarrassed to be posting this, considering the big JC is known for the Jessica Simpson famed velour track suits circa 2004. However, they really caught me with their tastefully patterned palm products (say that 5 times fast, I dare you). I'll take one of each, please and thank you. 
As I delved further and further into the dark abyss that is JC's website, I stumbled upon this nautical gem
And why yes, that is a sailboat, palm tree, and anchor (scroll to the right to see all of the coastal designs). 

Yes, handbags too. Juicy, you've won me over (it's even painful to admit).

Have you spied these Juicy gems? Have a fabulous day! 

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Manolo Blahnik on RueLaLa

I'm doing a slight OMG/Happy Dance for this! Anyone else catching this fabulous sale? Need an invite? Click, here! It starts right at 3:00pm ET, so set your alarm now! Happy shopping! 

DIY: Lilly Letters

Sometimes cCm and I are so obviously sisters, it's comical. One evening last week, cCm texted me with a photo...
Please excuse the photo. You'll just have to turn your head... Blogger was being uncooperative. I made similar letters for my dorm room way back when, too! 

This is something anyone can get behind, because really, who doesn't like Lilly and their initials? Talk about a winning combination! 

DIY Lilly Letters

What you'll need to complete the project:
An old Lilly Agenda (or current, doesn't matter!
Mod Podge
Paint brush
Wooden letters

You can find all of this at Michael's (well, except for the Lilly agenda). 
  1. Remove the patterned pages from the agenda, and cut pieces to fit each letter. It's like a puzzle!
  2. Lay all of the pieces out, then, glue each piece so they all stay in place. You don't need to use a lot of glue, just enough so each piece of paper stays in place securely.
  3. Mod Podge all over the letters covering every nook and cranny. Let try overnight and voila! 
Super simple, right? I am totally not into DIY things because of the time and effort, but this is super quick and easy! Have you created Lilly letters before? This would be perfect to give your little if you did it in sorority letters! Have a fabulous day!

Monday, April 22, 2013

McKinnon and Harris

McKinnon and Harris entered my radar several summers ago when I complemented a friend on their porch furniture. A Richmond-based outdoor furniture design company, McKinnon and Harris, boasts classic designs with updated twists. I am lusting over each and every piece that they offer. Have a fabulous day! 

Friday, April 19, 2013

Stirrings Mixers

Stirrings makes a fabulous margarita mix along with other cocktail mixers. What is your favorite pre-mixed cocktail brand? Have a fabulous day! 

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Target Jewels

 Target killing it in the jewelry department this spring. They have a lot of Kenneth Jay Lane look alikes and some pretty cute studs. Definitely worth a Target run. Even better? Most pieces are under $20.

Aren't they pretty? Have a fabulous day! 

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

23 Feels Great: Thank You!

My sweet friends got me a cake and adorned it with a pink and green "23". They know me too well... I am so excited to visit one of my favorite spas and get the massage that mPl and bSm gave me-- What thoughtful friends I have! 

No birthday is complete without sushi. I tried Penn Avenue Fish Company (the Forbes location) for the first time and I am in love. The seaweed salad was to die for. Any place that brings me lobster with a candle is fabulous in my book. 

Whiskey sours were had at the Capital Grille. Definitely one of my favorite bars (and restaurants) in Pittsburgh, mainly for the aesthetics. Think large, gorgeous paintings of horses and hunt scenes, wood paneled walls, white tablecloths. Classic, old school-- my kind of place. And please, who can resist those giant lions outside? 

I made a cameo in the Tribune Review last week and one of my besties, kBm, cracked me up when she handed me a bottle of champers with myself cut out. It is so her to do something quirky like that and it gave me a good laugh! Thanks, kBm! 

My Birthday weekend was filled with fabulous family, friends, drinks, and treats! Thank you to everyone for all of the kind e-mails, tweets, comments, etc. for my 23rd year! Have a fabulous day! 

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

CSH + Donate to the Red Cross

"CSH is offering 20% off on all items today and tomorrow in support of all our vendors with ties to the Boston area. All we ask is that you donate your savings (or even a portion) to the Red Cross, or any other charity, to help the victims of yesterdays events. Use code 'FOR BOSTON' in the special instructions for the discount."


What I'm Loving

The Digs Tumblr page is something I recently stumbled upon. It's a photo archive from the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. They post vintage Pittsburgh photos that are amazing. The above shot is from 1962 of the Civic Arena! I especially love that they profiled the Park Schenley restaurant. That was old school elegance at its' finest... a Pittsburgh gem, for sure. 

I am super picky when it comes to make up and am a self proclaimed Sephora junkie. I have been looking for a new concealer and think that these two just might fit the bill. Has anyone tried either of them? I splurged on the YSL Touche Eclat, but have expressed in the past that I am less than impressed. I think these will be dupes of the YSL stuff.
This clutch has been on my radar for a while now. I think it is a ton of fun with the bright colors and bold print. To me, this clutch is summer. I think the perfect outfit would be a teeny tiny white shift, deep bronze tan, simple sandals, a bold gold bangle, turquoise earrings and this pretty.

More on the beauty front: Nars Risky Business gloss and Mac's Twig lipstick. These are very subdued colors. Just a hint of color and perfect for everyday wear. These are two colors that would look nice with most complexions and they can be applied sans mirror (a major plus in my book). 

So I'm really not into the whole chevron trend. I don't mind it, but it's not in my personal style repertoire nor in my personal decor. However, these C. Wonder beauties have caught my eye. They're simple and fun which is exactly how every cocktail hour should be!

Next obsession? ASOS. I really only started ordering from ASOS within the past year. Everything I have ever ordered, I've loved. It has a ton of product. You could probably spend days on the site and still not see everything that the online shop has to offer. A lot of their pieces remind me of Zara in that they are classically structured but with a modern twist. It's amazing because of the versatility of the clothing. They offer everything from cocktail to work attire! Scroll through, above, to see some of my favorite picks! 

Red, white and blue perfection. this dress needs to get into my closet. I mean, so stinkin' cute. At $200, the price is a bit steep considering it's just a simple cotton french terry, but the anchors just make it perfection! 

Some Valentino eye candy. I am dying for a pair of the classic nude Couture bow pump

Lastly, I picked up a bottle of the Campo Viejo champagne the other day and was pleasantly surprised. Campo Viejo red wine is an inexpensive favorite of mine, so I knew it couldn't be terrible! Priced around $20, this is dry and delicious, a good alternative when my fave, Veuve, is not on tap for the night. 

What have you been loving recently? 
Have a fabulous day! 

Monday, April 15, 2013

You will always find people who are helping.

Fred, you were a smart man. There really are helpers. Thoughts and prayers to Boston and everyone affected. 

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Happy Birthday to Me, I'm 23!

Time to pop the bubbly! 23 years ago, I was born. Boy oh boy, 23 sounds so old to me. Well, as the saying goes, YOLO (yes, I just used that acronym)! I'm going to make 23 the best year yet! Although, 22 is going to be pretty darn hard to beat. And, now I can't say I'm feeling 22 anymore... T Swift, make a 23 song!

Alright, I am off to drink champagne and eat a giant chocolate covered macaron! 

Read past birthday posts: 22, 21, 20

Friday, April 12, 2013

VLOG: Jewelry Classics

For this Friday's VLOG, I pulled some of my favorite jewelry classics. What are  your favorites? As always, thanks for watching! Have a fabulous day! 

Thursday, April 11, 2013

DC Chillin' Part Deux

I committed to two posts on DC, so here is the second half of the recap (see first half, here). I was only there for 36 hours, but somehow managed to have many meals. 

Like I said, we popped into Edgar which is the Mayflower's newest add-on. It's very modern and very unlike the rest of the atmosphere at the hotel. It's gorgeous in its' own way. One reason to go? The cocktail list. They had an extensive list and they were fabulous. On the left is the bluecoat cucumber collins and the right is the pom-blackberry balsamic bourbon. You can see the ingredients, here ,to make your own. I am definitely going to attempt to recreate these cute cocktails. 

This is a photo I swiped here to give you more of an idea of the atmosphere. Very modern in comparison to the historical, classic hotel. 

I've received many a question about my striped dress. It is a Jules dress from J. Crew last summer. I am in love with the cut of the Jules dress and have it in several different colors, prints, and fabrics (it runs a tad on the large size, if you are wondering about fit. I sized down). Right now J. Crew has a botanical print that I am dying to get my hands on.. it is too perfect for spring. I also sported the tortoise necklace from Shop Crystal Faye! My Barbour jacket made for the perfect topper to the outfit; especially in the earlier and later portions of the day... we all know about my Barbour obsession from these posts here, here, and here! For those that may be wondering, I solved my great Louis debate and went with the Speedy 30. I am so glad with my decision and am thankful for all of you who weighed in on the uber important matter ;)

We posted up at on of my personal favorite DC spots, Old Ebbit Grille for the most delicious baked oysters in the entire world. We were in heaven! Remember last time I posted about OEG?

Then we went to Shake Shack... yes, DC now has a Shake Shack and this was about our fourth or fifth meal of the day. This was heaven for my stomach. This is my before, during, and after face...so embarrassing, I know.  If you are unfamiliar with SS, it's fast food-ish... almost like a Five Guys, but in my opinion, a million times tastier.

No trip to DC would be complete without Sunday brunch at Paolo's. Literally my fave brunch spot in the District. It is right on Wisconsin in the heart of Georgetown. Best brunch and for an unbeatable price! I had the steak with espresso bbq sauce, their fab potatoes topped off with an egg and toast and a bellini!

What else is G'town good for? Shopping... a favorite pastime of mine. It was so sad that Rugby was gone, but good ol' Ralph made up for it with his bright hues for spring and summer. Honorable mentions include, Vineyard Vines, Jack Wills, Kate Spade, Cusp, Zara, Brooks Brothers, Lou Lou, Sherman Pickey and Ella Rue.

Whew, that was a long recap of a too-short trip! DC, See ya again real soon. Have a fabulous day!

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