Saturday, January 29, 2011

negro y blanco

Black and white. Until I get a boyfriend who will act as my faux-tographer for outfit posts, expect to be seeing a lot more shower curtains. This ensemble brought to you in celebration of my friend Katie's 23rd birthday in early January. I've enjoyed the darker colors that winter gives us the liberties to wear (as evidenced here). However, with spring sniffing the air, I can feel my pastel obsession warming up...
Military jacket, H&M in Barcelona; black and white ruffled top, Target; quilted cross-body bag, vintage; black belt, Charlotte Russe; straight jeans, ATL; white watch, Michael Kors; bracelets, TOMS.

Stay excellent.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

the thursday things

Texts from my pledge grandbaby Caroline, keeping me up with the latest Kappa Delta gossip.
These are the things I've been loving this week. With the snow in Chicago being as unwelcome as a pair of white pumps in my closet (read: very unwelcome), I've been especially loving things that have been leaving me feeling especially warm and fuzzy and tingly all over.
 A thank you note that one of my clients sent me! She said in it that my company is very lucky to have me. This kept me smiling all day long today.
 Daft Punk; especially the Tron: Legacy soundtrack; especially Castor. Daft Punk isn't exactly warm, fuzzy music, but my brother got me into Daft Punk (starting with "Digital Love"), and this soundtrack reminds me of him. 
 The engraved silver bangle my mom got me for Christmas to match the one that she has had since before I can remember. I wear it everyday.
 This sweet bedding from Ikea. I adore the red buttons on the pillow case!
Taco night.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

diada deu en barcelona

First picture: musical musings near Via Laietana. Second picture: Spanish babushka (she brings this cat around the city, and I remember her from when I was abroad in Fall 2008). Third picture: blue mosaic in Parc de la Ciutadella. Fourth picture: sunlit afternoon on the beach. Fifth picture: late afternoon cocktails at Opium Mar. Sixth picture: rented bikes on the beach; best afternoon in Barcelona. Seventh picture: sisters; matching sunglasses compliments of Kappa Delta Bid Day 2010; yellow and grey breton shirt, Gap. Eighth picture: Halloween sand sculpture on the beach.

On Halloween, our second day in Barcelona, we rented bikes and toured all round the old industrial district, Parc de la Ciutadella (Park of the Old City), and the blissful beach. We stopped for drinks on the patio of Opium Mar nightclub and watched the sunset over the Mediterranean (my favorite body of water). It was total bliss. How I wish we were still there, watching pretentious twenty-somethings with fake accents smoke cigars while Caroline and I leaned back and (legally!) toasted to an excellent second day in Spain.

BE, xoxo.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Auld Lang Syne

My mom's decorations from the 2010 Holiday Season. First picture: a wreath from a local florist. Second picture: pines swathed in lights along our front walk. Third picture: our mantel on Christmas morning. Fourth picture: Santa's excellent gift-wrapping. Fifth picture: Our REAL tree (a very happy moment for me every year, following the fake tree crying incident of 2001), complete with the ribbon wrap we use every year and a thumb print reindeer I made in preschool.

Yes, I know Christmas is over, but with the the only thing on my mind being moving out, getting my own apartment, and having my own things, decorating my place for Christmas 2011 has me excited already. My mom always does such a fantastic job decorating for the Holiday Season (very necessary to capitalize this), and it keeps me feeling festive way before and far after New Years. 

I'll admit that it's a bit far in advance, but the post-Christmas sales have let me stock up on decorations, ornaments, and even Christmas cards for 75% off. I hit up Target, Pier 1 Imports, and our local garden and home decor store, Pasquesi, and procured (I knew my $3 English major words would come in handy somewhere) some cheap decorations that I'm eager to put up as soon as the 2011 Holiday Season begins. Now I just have to find that apartment. 

BE, xoxo.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

christina, carolina, barcelona

First and second pictures: La BoquerĂ­a. Third picture: Caroline at Happy Pills. Fourth picture: Universitat Pompeu Fabra Communication Campus; scarf and yoga pants, Old Navy; gray shirt and gray cross body bag, Gap; chestnut boots, Charlotte Russe. Fifth picture: dinner off Placa St. Jaume. Sixth picture: after dinner; purple tank and gray cross body bag, Gap; black cardigan (left in a taxi the next night), Old Navy; belt, Charlotte Russe; nail polish, Lincoln Park After Dark by OPI. 

The post-Christmas blues and days of working 8-5 with little time to do anything remotely photo-worthy has sent me venturing through my photographs from what was dubbed "EuroTrip 2010" ...  I went to Barcelona and Paris for 10 days back in October and November, with my good friend Caroline who was studying abroad in Paris. We met in my old stomping grounds, Barcelona, for 4 days of sun, seafood, and serious architecture, and then jetted off to Paris for 5 days of everything quintessentially French (berets, baguettes, bateaus, etc.). These are just a few pictures from my first day in Barcelona. I've only been back for 3 months stateside but these bitterly cold days with ambiguously-minded snow are sending my thoughts back to Europe.

BE, xoxo.

Monday, January 3, 2011

the holiday season, and whoop de doo

First two pictures: ruffle-top dress, Francesca's; tights, Express; black leather flats, Guess; gifted cultured pearl studs. Third picture: grey ruffle top, Old Navy. Fourth and fifth pictures: one-shoulder ruffle dress, Forever 21; red quilted cross-body bag, vintage Chanel. Last picture: dolman sleeve striped sweater, Gap; rope of faux pearls, borrowed from a friend... 2 years ago.

 As I mentioned in my last post, I'm really going to miss the sparkle and dressed-up spirit this holiday season ushers in. I spent November and December traipsing around Chicago in ruffle-y tops and dresses, shiny hair, and accessories that I have been yearning to pull out of my closet all year, especially black on black tights and this red Chanel bag that I've had since high school (found in a scummy rummage store for $14!). I can't wait to see what accessories will become special mainstays in my wardrobe rotation in 2011.

My 4-day mini break has been pretty low-key, and staying in this vein, today I'm lounging around in leggings -- online apartment hunting, scooping all my holiday clothing and gifts off my floor, and watching the Pretty Little Liars marathon, in anticipation for the return of PLL and Greek (eee!).

Have a good return to the real world this week, everyone. Be excellent to each other!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

it was the most wonderful time of the year

After every holiday or vacation or  birthday, I always seem to go through what my mom calls "post-vacation letdown." After the exciting events of these special days, like dressing up and indulging in festive foods and attending parties with friends decked out in just-purchase-for-the-occasion attire, life has to return to what it was before: work, routines, and less festive everything. The return to the everyday always makes me feel mundane and sad that the holiday-friendly excuse to wear sparkly cocktail rings and statement necklaces everyday or to eat my mom's peanut-butter-and-Hershey-kiss cookies for breakfast, lunch, and dinner is no longer acceptable.

The day after New Years always brings these feelings to a head. Even in the days after Christmas, there is NYE to look forward to, with its welcome attitude toward sparkly clothing and the celebratory mood it garners. It gives everyone something to celebrate, regardless of faith. The end of a calendar year. A fresh start. A new attitude. Promises to eat no carbs. Promises to volunteer every Saturday. Promises to hit the gym two times a day, everyday, in 2011. Promises to get organized. Promises to learn Turkish. Promises to teach the cat how to flush the toilet. Promises to be more patient with one's in-laws. As you can tell, not all of these are realistic. But the air of the holiday season lets us believe in something that seems unrealistic and magical, that we're capable of something that the March or July versions of ourselves didn't have the chutzpah to even think to attempt.

With that air of magic, to me, comes the desire to dress in a way I wouldn't normally during the other months of the year. I'm normally a jeans and t-shirt kind of girl, but December brings out black tights, sparkly jewelry, curly hair, and glittery heels. Something I hope to bring into the New Year with me is this reinvigorated sense of style.

My picks for a sparkly New Year include: 

This Lee Angel 18-Strand Gold Necklace. I purchased it at a trunk show where Peach Carr, of Project Runway fame, debuted her new tennis line. It is light and festive; I've worn it to work with a black scoop neck tee and on NYE with a strapless black lace cocktail dress. It was way more than I would normally spend on a piece of jewelry, but I see it as an investment (which is what I had to keep repeating to myself as I handed the saleswoman my credit card). However, it has proven itself to be the perfect last piece to several outfits.

These Rhinestone Leather Ballet Flats have been my go-to shoes for winter (other than the Uggs I use to slog through the parking lot during my morning and even trips to my car). They complement my Gap really skinny pants perfectly, which is the constant lower half of my work uniform. I've become something of a Gap addict in the past few months.

Lately, I've been investing in plain tops and bottoms (mostly from The Gap), and buying less expensive accessories. I've found that Charlotte Russe has a really current, on-point selection of belts, necklaces, bracelets, and rings that are pretty inexpensive. I own the first necklace and I plan on going back soon and buying the last two. They would look great with a plain shirt or a cardigan.

I hope you all had a safe, excellent New Year. Here's to a sparkly 2011.

new year, new interests

I've had this blog for over a month, and have come here several times in an attempt to make an interesting, aesthetic-ly pleasing post, but have been too intimidated by my lack of knowledge of HTML or uncertainty about resizing and posting the pictures I have taken for months, with the intention of putting them on this blog,

However, I figured, with a New Year comes an attempt at new things, new interest, new ventures, so, inspired by one of my favorite bloggers, Cupcakes and Cashmere, who I think takes such lovely pictures of everything she does, I decided to start my own. I'm still finding my footing in the "blogosphere," but I hope to take some of you along for what I hope to be an interesting ride.

For now, I'm signing off. Until next time, be excellent to each other.