Casual Friday: Voter Edition

Today my sartorial choices are skewing slightly fall-ish and decidedly voter-ish.

A printed dress is still easier than easy for pandemic staying-at-home working and lounging — while still looking polished if you venture out.

This snappy tote and black and white I Am A Voter strap make for a stylish and comfortable way to schlep your ballot to the nearest polling station or post office.

Don’t forget to wear your mask when you go! Stripes with a heart are as cheery as can be.

Pink ankle socks paired with a classic flat loafer are a fun nod to fall while still being comfy to wear, just in case there is a line at the voting booth.

A beautiful pen makes filling out your mail-in ballot a pleasure. Plus it is refillable, so you can use it for years to come.

This terracotta-meets-poppy nail polish feels perfect for early autumn — and the name Yes, I Can(yon) is just the inspiration we need to carry us through this election.

For voting resources, visit I Will Vote.com. Let’s make our voices heard!

Best of: Makers I ❤️

Some of the makers I love have been up to fun new somethings, and I just had to share!

Block Shop is offering a free VOTE pin with every order shipped from their studio this month, and it is seriously the cutest version of this hugely important message I have seen so far. Also, if their Instagram is any indication, they will have masks back in stock next week! All mask profits go directly to support meals for garment workers in LA, plus they are super stylish and adorable. Win-win.

Heath Ceramics just debuted their 2020 Winter Seasonal Collection, and I couldn’t love it more. Dubbed “The Season of Hope & Love,” it is full of stunning icy whites and greys along with the happiest buttery yellows and a hint of wildflower purple. Gradations in glazes are meant to signify transition, which I find beautifully poetic for this tumultuous time. I think we can all use some hope and love right about now, and the gradient yellow trays and vases in particular are perfectly sunny and delightful.

Finally, Baleen Jewelry has some beautiful new arrivals to peruse. I am in love with the organic simplicity of the pebble necklace, and want to add the sweet little XYZ studs to my rotation immediately. As always, all of their pieces are sustainably handmade in the USA, with zero-waste manufacturing and recycled materials.

Enjoy!

Yippee, chinoiserie!

Heron wallpaper in green via Gucci

I think I might be a little late to the party on the “grandmillenial” design trend, but I am here now — albeit with my own twist. I have always been a fan of mixing styles, and lately, my “old-meets-new” aesthetic is skewing decidedly 18th century, with dashes of Victorian and Belle Époque for good measure. Think less granny, more great great great great granny.

Chinoiserie is not so much actual Chinese style as a European imagining of Chinese decorative style. It originated in the 17th century with a Western fascination with the Far East, and became wildly popular through the 18th century. The fanciful designs featuring plants, birds, fruit, and animals in stunning colorways make for beautiful companions to the glamour of Hollywood regency, or a sumptuous counterpoint to clean mid-century modern furnishings. And I am HERE for it.

I have had a design crush on Theobert Pot for some time, and his sunroom always makes me swoon. The Gucci heron-print wallpaper panels, the paper lantern, the Danish modern elements, that glorious green Togo lounge? Perfection. He has an amazing eye for color and style. More and more lately, other jewel-tone florals have been catching my eye, too, as well as patterned lamp shades and animal-themed lamps. House of Hackney, for example, can do no wrong for me at present. How stunning is this cheetah lamp?! My heart! Also cue the sound of my wallet screaming, but I digress.

So, what’s a girl to do? I’ve scouted around and come up with my own shortlist of items to make my Victorian and chinoiserie dreams come true, at a much lower price point.

I also have a few items I have added to my decor: a had-to-snag-it vintage painting, a lovely tray my mom stitched years ago, and a pair of small reproductions painted on wood (hi, Pinky and Blue Boy!). Emily Henderson says vintage and antique items help give soul to a space, and I couldn’t agree more.

I am planning to custom frame a few wallpaper panels for a chinoiserie feel in our living room, mix in the snake lamp near a 1970s-esque round mirror, and hang that gorgeous heron wallpaper behind my bed. Wish me luck, and yippee for chinoiserie!

Five fun decor items: birthday edition

This weekend is my birthday, so just for fun, I thought I’d share some of the home items I’ve had my eye on lately. Our house is an eclectic mix of 19th-century-Paris-apartment-meets-relaxed-California-chic vibes, and here are five things I have or would love to have in our space. We are home these days for work and play, celebration and everyday alike, so we might as well make it a place we love to be.

We have been home SO MUCH in the past several months that a new couch has become a necessity. Our old one is cute but not all that comfortable for the long haul, unfortunately. This beauty, the Maxwell from Interior Define, was customizable in so many ways — fabric, cushion type and fill, size, legs — everything! I can’t wait for it to arrive. And besides their lovely furniture offerings, their customer service staff has been nothing short of amazing.

I ordered this chair from CB2 about a million years ago (you know, back in February), and it finally arrived a couple weeks ago after a pandemic-related delay. It is super comfortable, and I love the look so much! It’s the perfect addition to our mix of dining chairs.

EQ3’s adorable Bingo Bango Bongo stools are all finally in back in stock, and they are on sale to boot! Bingo has had my heart for months, so you’d better believe I ordered it as soon as I could. Indoor or outdoor, stool, side table, plant stand, alone or as a set — these earthenware beauties are super versatile. Decorative AND functional.

This burlwood cabinet in CB2’s newest catalog had me at “hello.” I have zero need for a new cabinet, but if I did, this would be at the top of my list. Curvy edges with that gorgeous texture and the brass accents? Hel-lo. I’ll just lean here and casually sip a cocktail, thankyouverymuch.

Lastly, I am intrigued by this year’s pleated lamp shade trend. These gorgeous shades from Danish shop LeKrazyHorse are beautiful, come in amazing colors, and they offer pretty much any size you might need. New shade = easy way to snazz up whatever lamp you’d like to give a bit more personality. Bonus: this vintage Mads Caprani lamp is AMAZING.

Wonderful small things

This is becoming a year of wonderful small things.  The big things have been overwhelming, to say the least: we are still in the middle of a worsening pandemic, our government continues to make our country a hateful and divisive place, Black Lives Matter is still not considered a universal truth, police brutality is an ongoing issue… there is so much for us to cope with.  To remind myself that it is still worthwhile to get out of bed every day, I am trying to remember the small things.  This way I will always have something to look forward to, to enjoy, or to revel in.  A particularly good lunch.  Snuggles with my pups in the morning.  The way the light filters into my bedroom on a weekend afternoon as I lay down for a nap.  A package out for delivery.  It’s these kinds of tiny daily joys that help me keep perspective, and keep me fueled to keep fighting for a better world.

Each time I venture out to Trader Joe’s for much-needed groceries, I buy a bunch of silver dollar eucalyptus leaves. I love having fresh greenery in my home, and it feels like a luxury even though it only costs $4. Plus, they last forever compared to cut flowers!

The new perfume I ordered arrived this week.  ‘REPLICA’ Lazy Sunday Morning is a unique scent that somehow perfectly captures the feeling of fresh crisp sheets on a breezy, sunny morning.  I sampled this perfume on my last outing with friends before the pandemic really hit, so it carries thoughts of dear friendships as well as idyllic lazy mornings.

Also, I was so happy to receive the Rain + Bow necklace I ordered a few weeks ago.  It is weighty and so well made, the packaging was so sweet with it’s little extras, and it is a wonderful daily reminder that I am always in the process of overcoming.  Also I am thrilled that a $10 for every necklace sold is donated to Mental Health America.

Be well, stay safe, and don’t forget to wear a mask. We’ll get through this. Little joys are there for us to find, even though it may seem bleak right now.

Beauty picks

acs_0196

What better time than Valentine’s Day to talk beauty?  Whether you’re getting ready for a night out with a special someone or staying in and pampering yourself (or both!), here are some of my very favorite tried-and-trues.  I am rather picky when it comes to beauty products, so hopefully you’ll find these as excellent as I do.  Trust.

Skin Care

Glow Butter

I have to credit the excellent Andrea Linett with this find.  Kimberly Howell created this amazing skin balm that I love love love.  It is deeply moisturizing, healing, and revivifying for both face and body.  Did I mention it is handmade and all natural?  Jojoba, avocado, and coconut oils along with tupelo beeswax make for a luxurious, glow-inducing, well… Glow Butter!

Elta MD UV Facial Broad-Spectrum SPF 30 Plus

This is the ONLY sunscreen I have managed to use on a regular basis.  It feels more like a moisturizer and has none of that terrible sunscreen-y smell I loathe.  10/10 will buy repeatedly.

Fresh Rose Face Mask

My favorite face mask, this rosy gel is soothing, moisturizing, brightening, and all-around lovely.  My skin always feels supple and refreshed afterwards, which I love.

Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment

Even my husband loves Fresh’s cushy lip balm — he says it is the only balm that makes his chapped lips feel more comfortable right away, which I agree with wholeheartedly.  I’ve tried a few of the tinted options, but I always come back to the original clear formula.  Why mess with perfection?

Clinique Self-Heating Blackhead Extractor

My skin tends towards blackheads on my nose and chin, but I have never had much luck with products to combat them.  Enter the Self-Heating Blackhead Extractor by Clinique.  It is a little creamy, a little scrub-y, and heats up like magic when you get it wet.  It even has a funny bumpy scrubby little massage tool built right into the cap.  All of these things together somehow have combined to create a product that miraculously cleans out my pores like none other.

Fur Oil

Thank you, Emma Watson, for spreading the news of Fur Oil far and wide.  This spherical bottle of smoothing, soothing, quick-drying oil is a truly wonderful thing if you ever deal with ingrown hairs.  Buy a bottle now and thank me (and Emma Watson) later.

Makeup

I am pretty minimal when it comes to makeup these days, but there are a handful of items I reach for every day without fail.

Rimmel Provocalips in Kiss Me You Fool

This 16-hour lip color really delivers, and is a great price to boot.  I hate applying lipstick throughout the day but also feel like a ghost without any lip color, so this liquid lipstick/balm combo is the answer to my flutist prayers.  It really doesn’t budge — food-proof, kiss-proof, holding-an-instrument-to-my-lips proof — and it comes in the perfect red.  Sold.

Glossier Boy Brow and Lash Slick

Most days I don’t use much eye makeup, opting for a strong lip instead.  I swipe on Boy Brow and Lash Slick daily, though, for the perfect wide-awake eye.  Mandatory feature:  Lash Slick never ever clumps.

Milk Makeup Lip + Cheek in Rally

If I go the extra mile (or minute) and opt for blush, my favorite go-to is Milk Makeup’s Lip + Cheek.  Rally is the perfect bright fuchsia pink to brighten my face a bit, and the creamy stick couldn’t be easier to use.  It is also super natural-looking — their formula just melts into skin like a dream.

There you have it!  My most favorite, tried-and-true beauty products.  Go slather on that delightful Rose Mask, kick up your heels in your fuzziest slippers, and enjoy.

 

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New classics

Happy new year!  The start of a new year always feels fresh to me, and I’ve got classics on my mind for looks that are clean-clean-clean after all the excess of the holidays.

jcrew_parke_blazer_caramel

Leave it to J. Crew to make the perfect tan blazer.  I’m planning to wear this for years.  Paired with a chambray shirt and black denim?  Yes and please.  Jeans and a graphic tee?  Perfection.  Pencil skirt and blouse?  Of course!  I could go on and on.

universalstandard_v_rex_navy_dove_grey_stripe

Other items in my wardrobe may come and go, but my striped tees are forever staples.  Universal Standard’s Peruvian cotton has a wonderful drape, so I am thrilled to add this one to my rotation.

nordstrom_pave_huggie_hoops

I got a third hole pierced in each ear just before Christmas and I couldn’t be happier about it — I’ve been having tons of fun mixing and matching my earrings ever since.  Huggie-style hoops are having a huge moment right now, and these feel perfectly classic to me. These sweet pink ones are adorable as well.

vince_coastal_wool_cashmere_cardigan-e1578435363361.jpeg

Speaking of perfection, this cardigan is it.  Super soft, lightweight yet plenty warm, flattering cut, and a beautiful navy hue so you can pair it with anything.

amber_bottles

This perhaps falls into the huge-organizational-nerd category, but because it isn’t the new year without some sort of attempt to streamline things, I picked up a pack of these translucent amber bottles for our shower.  Goodbye, loud mismash of brightly-colored labels.  Hello, calm apothecary shower experience.  *hearteyes*

I don’t feel like I need a new me for the new year per se, but fresh clean and classic?  I’m all in.

 

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Wish list 2019

I love this time of year.  Christmas lights are up, choosing gifts I know my loved ones will adore is one of my favorite things, and the scent of fir trees makes me happy every time I catch a whiff.  It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

As the holidays draw nigh, here is a list of things I am wishing for:

cloudsandladders_half_moon_earrings

I recently had the pleasure of chatting with Kate Joseph of Clouds and Ladders at a trunk show, and I was head-over-heels for her jewelry at first sight.  She is a delight.  Her jewelry is a delight.  I simply must have these studs.

thecitizenry_oro_cups

I have pined after these beautiful cups for years, and this is finally the year!  The shape, size, heft, and delicately imperfect stripe are just perfection.

thecitizenry_cuadra_throw

The tonal stripe of this gorgeous alpaca throw offers year-round cozy vibes, not to mention it is fair-trade in the truest sense of the word.

coach_stripe_field_tote

Speaking of stripes, I am enamored with this new Coach field tote.  Their new horse-and-carriage print feels so fresh, and I love the plush velvet stripes!  It’s the ideal size for everyday schlepping.

freepeople_quilted_denim_jacket

For reasons I cannot describe, this jacket had me at hello.  Somehow the denim, the quilting, the big slant pockets, and the slouchy comfort all add up to a lounge-y coat I want to wear all season.

paris_by_design_cover

And lastly, I cannot wait to get my hands on a copy of Paris by Design.  I love that city so much, and this would be a nice way to revisit without the hefty airfare price tag.  Although, if someone wanted to slip a pair of plane tickets inside, I would not be sad.

What are you wishing for this holiday season?  Wishing you a merry one!

 

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Giving thanks

While for many of us today marks the beginning of the holiday rush, I’d like to encourage a moment to reflect, give thanks, and maybe even give back.  May I offer a little nudge towards The Citizenry for some of your holiday gifts?  Not only do they offer incredibly beautiful items that support artisan communities all over the world, but today your purchases also help support their Black Friday Fund.  All profits today — yep, all profits — go towards building schools for migrant children at the U.S.-Mexico border.  While their families wait to seek legal asylum in the U.S., these children have no place to learn and play.  Education is a fundamental right these children are being deprived of, and today we can do a little bit to change that.  Every $120 we spend funds a week of school for a child: a real life magic school bus mobile school providing teachers, a psychologist, uniforms, and supplies.

Here are some of my favorites to bring some warmth to you or someone you love this holiday season.  Each is handmade, beautiful, and sure to be treasured for years to come.

Paloma alpaca throw  Oro cacao cups  Cuño accent pillow  Nublado wool throw

So thankful this year for family, friends, warm fuzzy cuddles, and the beauty of sharing.

Don’t forget!  Giving Tuesday is coming in just a few days!  It is a great opportunity to support causes that lie close to our hearts.

Five (+1) great plaid coats

universal_standard_margan_coat

Fall has finally arrived in earnest here, which means I finally got to wear my new plaid coat today.  It drapes nicely, is lined beautifully, and fits like a dream — the kind of piece I can dress up or down and wear for years!  It feels like this year’s crop of plaids is more playful than ever (and I do love a classic pattern done in fun colorways), so here are five more I have been eyeing.  Enjoy, and stay warm!

duffle coat  double-breasted  oversized  swing coat  sherpa