Tuesday, May 22, 2018

What to Wear to a Summer Wedding

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Wedding season is here! The invites have arrived, you've RSVP'd, now the one question remains: What do you wear to a summer wedding?

Last weekend we attended our first wedding of the summer in Pittsburgh. The short trip was a welcome opportunity to get out of town for a few days and rediscover a city we once lived in – and now love from afar. Despite to occasional downpour, the weekend was lovely. Pittsburgh is incredible in May, with flowers blooming (the street we stayed on – just a few blocks from our old apartment! – was filled with the scent of wisteria), lots of outdoor dining options, and with so much NEW happening – so much has popped up since my last visit in 2017. I said it on Instagram and I'll say it again, if you want to be completely seduced by Pittsburgh, visit in May. (Conversely, if you want to be horrified and never visit again, go in late November). The utter green-ness is enough to cause amnesia, making me (almost) forget why the city wasn't right for us – but damn, it sure is wonderful to visit. And what a perfect weekend for a wedding.

For practical reasons, I almost always wear long dresses to weddings. They're comfortable, easy to move in, easy to dance in, and you don't have to worry about flashing any uncles when you bust a move. We typically have one or two weddings to attend each season, and I like to choose a dress that I'll wear to all of them (usually). There are a few things I always look for in dresses – I don't always strictly adhere to this but as a general rule I like them midi-length or long, low cut or wrap, with a darker color or print. Determined to pack light and not break the bank, I went in search of the perfect wedding guest dress. Ideally, I wanted Reformation, because who doesn't? And because I know their dresses work for me and my style. I ended up finding the perfect one secondhand – score! And – double score – it packed down small and didn't wrinkle, so I could stick to my carryon-only policy. I kept the rest of the look simple, with a woven bag from Etsy, simple earrings my mother gave me forever ago, and basic black heels I got way back from Sole Society. Makeup-wise, I bought myself this lipstick and basically haven't stopped wearing it since.

I love finding dresses (and all my clothes) secondhand – but you know I'm not above buying something new if it's perfect so I thought I'd share a few of my faves. Because the second wedding is coming up and it's more casual... and to be honest, I'm thinking of wearing something different!

Wedding guest dresses:

... and all the accessories:

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Friday, May 18, 2018

Weekend Links 5.18

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Happy Friday! Anyone else jumping for joy that the weekend is here? We were out of town last weekend for a wedding, so I'm excited to just be home this weekend and get some things done around the apartment. Namely, I want to work on our patio. We have some surprise plants coming up out there (bleeding hearts!), and five huge planters to fill with more. I'm also shopping for a patio set (though instinct tells me to wait for Memorial Day weekend to make that purchase – I love this one and this one) and some string lights. Sounds like rain is in our forecast, so who knows, we might end up indoors moving furniture around and hanging art. It's hard to believe we've been in our place for nearly four months. In a lot of ways, this is the first place of ours that really feels like "home", at least since we lived in Massachusetts. But still so much more to be done! Have a wonderful weekend, friends!

PS - Just a reminder that I'm actively updating my Poshmark every weekend... shop my closet here!

This top... so damn versatile. Wear it like a dress, a top, a jacket or a duster. Boom. Done. You're welcome.

Me: Still searching for the perfect bag. Loving these structured handbags good for summer and all year round.

Are you watching the royal wedding?? it seems like a nice distraction from real life/American politics. Here's everything you need to know!

I'm reading this book right now and woof... it's a good one, but it's rough, especially if you were ever the weird kid in school (with the weird family)

My favorite, favorite, favorite brownie recipe. Ever. Always.

How to practice self-care and success

This is some serious needlepoint talent right here. Damn.

How cute are these cloud earrings? So adorable with a clean white tee and jeans. (Also really into these ridiculous things)

Currently counting down to beach season - love all these cute accessories!

YUM - Definitely making these as a treat this weekend

Never one to turn down more smoothie ideas – this book is on my list

I bought this lipstick in OG Lolita for the wedding last weekend and am IN. LOVE. So pretty and understated. (really want this one now too)

Love a red swimsuit - this one is SO CUTE and on sale

Man, this vintage dress looks really damn comfortable

lol (read the comments, arguably better than this article)

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

The Most Flattering Dress for Summer

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If there's one style of dress that populates my closet the most, it's the wrap dress. Specifically, midi-length wrap dresses. Usually from Free People if I'm being fully transparent (they just get me). I'm of the opinion that this just might be the most flattering and easy-to-wear silhouette out there, gorgeous on every body type and all around comfortable regardless of the occasion. Need a wedding guest dress? Wear a wrap dress. Funeral? Wrap dress. Roaming Pittsburgh with too much time on your hands? ...Wrap dress! Add a pair of cute slides or sneakers (like these), and you're done.

That last one was me this past weekend. Chris and I were back in the 'Burgh for a friend's wedding and I decided to stray a bit from my standard jeans-and-tank-and-Birks combo in favor of a couple of dressier outfits (shocking, I know). The weather was sporadic, as it tends to be in Pittsburgh, so between the rainstorms and hot, muggy afternoons, this yellow number (from FP last summer) was the perfect thing to keep me (mostly) cool. After so many months of wearing layer upon heavy layer, it feels groundbreaking to put on literally two pieces and call it good. All hair the wrap dress + Birkenstock combo! Here are a few more faves:

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Monday, May 7, 2018

Instant Outfits

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Remember back in the day when we all inexplicably had enough time in the day to photograph our outfits on the reg? No shade to those who do –  but I don't have time for that these days (if anyone can find a way to make each day 5 hours longer, that'd be great). Anyway if you follow me over on Instagram, you might have noticed I've been sharing more of my daily outfits in stories. It's fast, it's easy, and I've been enjoying documenting them. After spending the colder months wearing basically the same thing, the recent change in temperature has been welcome motivation to find something more cohesive to wear. I've also been thrifting a ton since moving back to Maine, and few things inspire me style-wise more than a solid gold secondhand find (like that killer blazer, above). In fact,  these outfits are all mostly secondhand, save for a few closet staples, like my favorite sleeveless tops, a classic biker jacket (like these), and some sweet shades

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Friday, May 4, 2018

Weekend Links 5.4

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Say it with me now, "I can't believe it's May already!" You and me both, bub. Spring (and a little bit of summer) finally joined us this week, and I'm so happy about it! It was a whopping 80 degrees on Wednesday, which felt great and totally foreign after months of cold and wind. We moved here right at the start of cold weather, so it really felt like spring and summer would never, ever get here. I'm so excited to start hiking again and do more than just walk along the beach (even though I've already seen some people swimming – insanity).

Tonight we're going out for my mom's birthday. It's been so long since I've been around on this day, I'm so glad we can be here to celebrate with her. The weather is supposed to hold for Saturday, so I'm hoping Chris and I can get out and do some work on our patio (we have a patio!) or get out for some coastal hiking, and then Sunday calls for rain so it'll be a stay-in-and-work-on-freelance/ list more stuff on Poshmark kind of day for me. What do you have planned? Hope it's good whatever it is!

I wish these vintage shoes were my size! Giving me all the '90s feels in the BEST way.

This vintage brass hanging planter would look so pretty filled with air plants (it would even make a nice bird feeder – I've got patios on the mind)

How gorgeous does Jess look on the Anthro blog? Such a good interview

On my wishlist for May: Some cute as hell earrings (those lemons!), a super fun beach-to-city bag, and some classic goes-with-everything sneakers.

... and some under $30 strawberry earrings... because strawberry earrings

How to wear ballet flats (relevant because I suddenly want a pair of red leather ballet flats – who am I?)

My friend wrote a book! And it's on sale on Amazon right now! So so proud of this lady

Speaking of moms – 43 mother's day DIYs that don't suck (helpful!)

This would also make the perfect mother's day gift – bonus for not being cheesy

More spring style inspiration: Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman. Seriously.

This card is painfully cute. Like, so cute that I'd just buy it to display. (Oh god the entire shop is adorable)

Currently obsessed with this mint cacao of Celeste's (I've been drinking a version of the hot one at night - so good)

So happy longer shorts are coming back - love the length and style of these (plus, they're on super sale, so that helps)

Creative ways to support mental wellbeing – 10/10 recommend

This handmade bag is chic af... love this one too

Reasons to be cheerful

The "career iceberg" too relevant not to share

Friday, April 27, 2018

Weekend Links 4.27

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Happy freakin' Friday! Could I be any more excited for the weekend? Probably not. The weather here finally turned the corner and I honestly feel like a different person and I'm so excited to get outside tomorrow. We've had some rain this week (honestly I'm just glad it's not snow), but tomorrow looks like there will be sun, so Chris and I are headed to mid-coast for some low key coastal hiking. I can't wait. I feel like it's been forever since we left the peninsula and/or traveled anywhere that wasn't my mom's house. Which is funny because that's where I'll be on Sunday, cleaning out the last of our stuff and listing a TON of stuff on Poshmark (seriously – I have bags of stuff I've needed to list). What are you up to? Hope you have something great planned – here's some links for your weekend:

First of all, THE NEWS THIS WEEK, GUYS. For once we have something other than politics to talk about – first of all, the Cosby verdict. How incredible for those victims? This article is very much worth reading (NYT). AND SECOND OF ALL... for all you murderinos out there, how incredible is THIS?!

A very elegant way to showcase the contents of your pocket... this vintage brass clamshell would look pretty rad in your entryway

ICYMI - my two favorite cruelty-free cleansers

This vintage butterfly sleeve top would look pretty with 501's and some big-ass earrings

Love this pattern-mixing outfit on Abby (and that location!)

These would look pretty adorable peeking out from the top of black ankle boots

I don't have children, but my sister is special needs and I think this is important: Helping your child navigate a special needs encounter (honestly, some adults need this too)

Because I'm down for flat shoes that also hide my toes: These shoes are on sale and cute as hell.

How to get out of a slump - love that lead image

Two bags I'm loving for spring: This fisherman bag and this classic weekend tote (the extra large is honestly the BEST beach bag)

This post from Keiko resonated

Into these cute cropped jeans for spring (+ save 40% off summer styles, like this perfect wrap dress)

Why you should add baking soda to your bath

This dress would be a perfect summer bridesmaid dress and it's in a full range of sizes!

Love these cute gingham pants - so pretty with a red top, right?

Needless to say, this book is now on my must-read list

Loving everything in this Etsy shop - especially these earrings, so pretty for a modern Mother's Day gift

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Two Cruelty-Free Cleansers I'm Loving Right Now

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I've had a few people ask me over on Instagram about my skincare routine – so I thought it was high time I showed you! Today I'm sharing two cleansers I've been using for the past several months that have made a huge difference in the clarity of my skin...

Honestly, when we transitioned from Philly to Maine last year, my skin wasn't looking so great. I let the stress of moving get the better of me, and when you pair stress with a side of depression-lite, things can go off the rails pretty easily (pizza! beer! all the sugar!) – at least for me.  In my world it's a slippery slope into emotional eating that's often reflected right back in the mirror by way of breakouts. So after a summer of pretty clear skin, I arrived in our new state with congested pores, dry patches, and breakouts on my chin (so fun!). Along with significantly cleaning up my diet, which has honestly taken several months to turn back around, I needed a new skincare routine. Especially a new cleanser. So I did what any normal person would do. I googled "cleansers for pore congestion".

My search led me back to a product I used years ago – Jan Marini Bioglycolic Face Cleanser. This cleanser contains Glycolic acid, which gently exfoliates and clears away impurities and dead skin. When I first used it way way back, I didn't quite understand the benefits and how it should be used, but upon trying this cleanser again – it did what I needed it to do. Which was clear away the congestion so my skin could breathe. What do I mean when I say "congested skin"? While not exactly acne-prone, I noticed the skin on my chin was constantly bumpy and just looked clogged (I know, ew.). I learned that without proper, gentle exfoliation, dead skin cells can sort of "glue" themselves to new skin. Blocking pores and preventing skin from properly functioning. From October through February I pretty much used this cleanser daily (only at night), and occasionally as a mask (leave it on for 3-5 minutes, then wipe away with a damp washcloth and rinse, avoiding eyes). I did start to notice more dryness, which is when I switched things up and added a second cleanser to use on opposite days...

The Biossance Squalane + Antioxidant Cleansing Oil. I actually bought this cleanser back in November, as part of a Black Friday set (I'm obsessed with the Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil, which I'll talk about in a future post), but didn't start using it right away. Turns out, this cleanser is the perfect balance to the Jan Marini products. It removes stubborn eye make up super easily and dissolves impurities. I was worried it would clog my pores, considering how well the Glycolic cleaner worked, but it proved to be a nice balance. I use this almost daily in the evenings, and also when I just need to remove makeup before using the Jan Marini cleanser. On a broader note, I love the mission behind Biossance and their dedication to clean, science-backed sustainable beauty. I use several products from the brand and have loved almost every single one. Best part? You can order samples for free (+ the cost of shipping), so there's no huge commitment. This is actually how I got hooked on the oils – through Instagram (typical, haha). Also, pro tip: keep your small sample bottles and refill from the full size when you're traveling!

Lastly, what makes these cleansers ones I'll likely use far into the future is that they're both cruelty-free. I've been slowly overhauling my beauty/skincare/life products to ensure that none are tested on animals and I was thrilled to find out that not only is Biossance cruelty free, but Jan Marini is too (I was actually a little surprised about that for some reason). Also, there's an excellent app that scans bar codes and tells you whether a product is cruelty free – Cruelty Cutter. 10/10 recommend.

Do you have a cruelty-free cleanser you swear by? I'd love to know!