Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Plaid Prep

Chicago Stylist

Personal Style

Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
• plaid shirt, my grandmother's (also love this classic)

• skinny navy cords from J.Crew (also loving these Lauren Conrad ones!)
• heels from Zara (these kitten heel sling backs are perfect for spring)
• bag by Michael Kors
• vintage pearls
 
Often times the easiest pieces make casual, chic ensembles. This plaid shirt was uncovered from my grandmother's closet – I paired it here with my super soft cords from J.Crew. Now, normally that combo doesn't scream style ... but add high heels and pearls and I'm comfy and current. This shirt is also a great casual counterpart to a slim pencil skirt ... add that (and now that it's warm, a bit of tanning lotion to these white gams) and this look is a plaid professional look.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Rosy B*tch

Rosy Bitch cocktail

As the warm weather months approach, it's time to start thinking about fun, refreshing beverages. A few weeks back, my sisters, mother and I got creative and came up with our new favorite drink – the "Rosy Bitch". We were inspired by my glamorous grandmother's drink of choice, a red wine spritzer, and seriously upped the lady-like factor with this pink hue, rose flavor, sparkling wine, and fruit of choice (we did strawberries, but I always love the way raspberries absorb the bubbly!

Warning: these are really, really tasty ... so it's easy to polish off both bottles pretty quickly. 

Fill a flute half way with any prosecco (I haven't found a bottle I don't like), add Belvior Elderflower & Rose Presse (I've found it at Treasure Island) and finish with berries ... enjoy!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Spring Staples

I'm all for trying out new spring trends or incorporating patterns into my warm weather wardrobe, but I can't pass up a classic clothing staple, and season to season, Zara never disappoints. With the feminine lines, classic neutrals, and pops of bright red (my personal fave), these pieces from Zara's current collection are calling to me (and there are many more fun finds where these came from!) ...   
Zara spring
red flared skirt – perfect with a white tee and tan sandals  $59.90
Zara spring
double layer top, perfectly paired with jeans, skirts, shorts, etc ...  $49.90
Zara style
high waisted skinny jeans – a fresh break from my super dark denim  $49.90
Zara summer
two-tone dress with embellished neckline - love this all-in-one summer piece  $59.90
Zara spring
nude crystal flats ... that go with everything  $59.90
Zara
red raffia coat – the perfect topper through summer  $139  

Friday, April 18, 2014

Have an Excellent Easter Weekend!

stylish Easter eggs

Happy weekend all! Well it's not supposed to be the summer city weather Chicago had last weekend, but maybe we'll at least get some sun. Even though my brother and sisters and I are grown, we still decorate eggs and have a hunt around the house – I love the idea of using a white paint pen on brown eggs (and kinda surprised I didn't think of this sooner!)

Also this weekend ...
• Bring a whimsical snack to your Easter gathering with these dark chocolate easter egg nests (they're so easy ... and delicious ... and messy).

• If you're a fan of musicals, chances are you're a fan of singing along to them ... well if you're a Grease fan, this Saturday you can throw on your best Sandy costume (there's a contest!) and sing along to the hits at the Music Box Theater.

• Since warm weather isn't here yet, I will just have to day dream about it. I just ordered a bottle of this body oil and I'm embarrassingly excited (monoi oil comes from French Polynesia and I got hooked on the fragrant oil when we honeymooned there a couple years ago). Now I can be reminded of our trip and smell amazing all the time (and when the warm weather does arrive, this stuff also soothes sunburn).

Have a great weekend!

Photo courtesy of Pinterest

Thursday, April 17, 2014

High-Waisted Vintage

Chicago Stylist

Personal Style

Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
• my grandmother's skirt, belt, and bag

• Zara crop top (similar one here, and I also love this ballet-inspired one)
• Zara pumps (similar ones here)
 
Turns out my grandmother hid some gems in the depths of her closet for years. I uncovered this fantastic high-waisted midi skirt, which happened to fit and was just begging to be paired with my black cropped top (finally a high enough waist - and inch is pretty much all I'm willing bare there). Paired with this classic leather bag that she also stowed away, I'm balancing vintage with new in this black and tan. 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Homeward Bound

It may not have been an Alaskan adventure or Route 66, but Steve and I found hidden gems along our road trip from New Jersey home to Chicago. Legs of the trip seemed to alternate between scenic and lovely, to flat and, well, boring, but we had fun! Some highlights below ... 

Road Trip
 
Clockwise from top:
• Steve with our new (old) SUV. I love driving bigger cars so I was excited to take this baby out on the open road.

Hershey, PA is exactly like my inner 6 year old imagined it – everything is chocolate related! The street lamps resembled Kisses, roads are named after the candy bars, and there is even a chocolate theme park in it's center!

• My family used to stop at Big Boy when we went up to Wisconsin, but since that one closed years ago, I hadn't spotted one since ... turns out he just moved out east a little (and west to California, and north to Michigan).

• There were covered bridges along our entire trip – sure we had to exit the expressway to spot them, but shots like this were worth it.

• Steve and I have a weakness for antique malls. We love sifting through the endless aisles of old loot to spot those gems. This time we came back with a brass bed, vintage patio furniture, and a pedestal table (good thing we picked up that SUV!)

• Many of the smaller towns we stopped in had the most adorable little buildings. A little town called Olmstead Falls restored their "downtown" to it's original glory, so sights like this amazing little house weren't uncommon. 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Summer Style Preview

It seems Chicago is pulling it's April fools' joke a little late in the month – snow showers, hilarious. Until we actually have consistent spring weather, let's fawn over the summery style at Coachella. Breezy dresses, short shorts, and plenty of sun – all of the makings of a warm weather fashion feast for the eyes ... 

Coachella
Coachella
Coachella
Coachella
Coachella
Coachella
 

Photos courtesy of Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, Refinery29

Friday, April 11, 2014

Have a Perfect Spring Weekend!

Pittsburg

Remember how Steve and I were going to roadtrip from Arkansas, through Nashville, back to Chicago? Yeah, that didn't happen. New plan: We're flying to New Jersey (to pick up our new car) and roadtripping home from there. We're pretty pumped to try our first philly cheese steak in Pittsburg (and I really want to ride this!), and hit some antique malls and breweries on the way home (taking the beer to go of course, we don't drink and drive).

Also this weekend ...
• It's supposed to amazing weather Saturday in Chicago (of course we're away that day - sigh). Get yourself over to Big Star early and revel in the perfect patio day.

• Maybe you're not a perfect weather kinda person – or you have an affinity for silent films – either way, head to the Music Box for the Charlie Chaplin 100th anniversary marathon.

• Friday through Sunday, the Chicago Botanic Gardens is hosting their Antiques and Garden Fair. Lovely weather, lovely gardens, amazing antique finds? What more could you ask for?

Have a great weekend and I'll be back on TUESDAY.

Photo courtesy of Etsy

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Gilt-Free Shopping

Gilt City

It's that time again, the Gilt City Warehouse sale is coming up at the end of the month! If you haven't shopped this event before, get your tickets now (it always sells out). Almost anything and everything you've seen on the fab site Gilt – from housewares to handbags, kids shoes to serious designer duds – it's all marked way way down at this sale. 

Past deals I've spotted were a beautiful Marni maxi dress for $145, a classic pair of Prada pumps for $85, and a killer John Varvatos men's suit for $180. Even if you only walk away with a $20 pair of sunglasses, it's worth it (cause those used to be $300!).

Get your tickets here and I'll see you there

photo courtesy of So Much To Smile About

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Row This Way

In my continued effort to make a stylish wardrobe easily attainable for all, I've partnered with Keaton Row – the super easy (and free!) online styling service. Like I've been doing for some time, I will happily shop for ladies seeking stylish staples, only this time I pull pieces from shops women already know and love, like Nordstrom, ASOS, and Shopbop. And like I mentioned, the service is free! You only pay for the items you choose to purchase. 

Keaton Row

So if you need a dress for that upcoming wedding, new work staples, or just don't have time to shop for those fun spring pieces yourself, check it out Keaton Row here.