Jun 29, 2012

All the Small Things

[Isola del Giglio]

[Pear tree - Can't wait to use these in recipes when they are ripe!]

[Watching Germany vs. Italy]

[Fish tacos and grilled corn at happy hour]

[Celebrating the semi-final victory]

[Colorful stack-able rings]

Jun 28, 2012

Sunglasses 101

Buying a new pair of sunglasses is always a daunting task, especially when venturing on a solo expedition. However, there are a few rules of thumb one can follow to make the process a bit less scary! First, it is recommended that you figure out the shape of your face. If you are unsure of your face-shape, stand in front of a mirror and trace the outside of your face on the mirror with an old lipstick or a dry-erase marker. Step back and observe the shape you drew. In order to achieve balance, you should try and find sunglasses that are the opposite shape of your face. For example, if you have a square-shaped face, try and find sunglasses with rounded lenses. Or if you have a narrow face, you will want to find sunglasses that add some width to your face.

Also try and find frames that physically fit your face. If you choose frames that are too small, you will end up with a “fat face” effect – no one wants that! On the contrary, choose frames that are too large, and you end up looking like a human-sized insect. No thanks. 

Round Face
For a round face, try to find sunglasses with a square or angular shape, and make sure they are as wide or wider than your face. If they are narrower they will just accentuate the roundness of your face. I love the cheetah pattern on the above sunglasses - so fun!

Square Face
For a square face, choose a softer shape. Look for something oval or a rounded rectangle to balance out the angles of your face. A cat-eye shape would be so fun! Aviators would work as well. The tortoise shell colored glasses above would definitely look great on any skin tone.

Oval Face

For an oval face, most shapes work well! Feel free to experiement! I love a classic aviator – my dad has been rocking the Ray Ban Aviators even before they were considered "cool."

Thin Face

For a thin face, be sure to choose a pair of sunglasses that does not extend beyond the width of your face! Or else your face may look longer and thinner than it is.

I hope these tips help you find that perfect pair of sunglasses!

Jun 27, 2012

Awesome Blouse-om: 7 Reasons Blouses Are AWE (wait for it) SOME

  1. They’re easy, breezy, beautiful… (Cover Girl?...)
  2. They can be worn for a date, a night out on the town, brunch with the girls or even a day at the office.
  3. They’re great to wear on those days you’re feeling a little “thick”.
  4. They can be paired with skinny jeans, shorts, a mini skirt, a pencil skirt, a maxi skirt… Okay just about any skirt.
  5. They’re super comfortable.
  6. They come in long sleeve, ¾ sleeve, short sleeves or tank tops so they’re a wardrobe staple year round.
  7. They’re extremely flattering on bodies of all shapes and sizes.
And with that said, here are some awesome blouse-oms that I want and (let's be real) need:

What's your fave type of blouse? Big and billowy? Patterns or plain? Sunny brights or simple basics?

Jun 26, 2012

Cut-out Dress

In the heat of the summer, there is nothing cooler and more comfortable than an adorable dress. However, if you’re looking to be a bit more sexy and scandalous, consider a summer dress with cut-outs. When placed right at the waist, they can be incredibly flattering and slimming, not to mention, the added ventilation due to the lack of fabric will prevent overheating under the blazing sun.  Below are my personal favorites.

Do you plan on giving this new dress trend a try?

Jun 25, 2012

Making a Statement

Statement necklaces have declared their reign in the modern fashion world and I am officially surrendering my jewelry drawer to their supremacy. In a moment when it’s all about the accessories, their ability to command an outfit is indisputable and the versatility with which multiple necklaces can be paired is unparalleled. While wearing one chunky necklace effortlessly livens up an otherwise simple outfit, the option of pairing delicate pieces with a more substantial necklace adds a bit of dimension. Here are a few that have been pleading with me to be purchased:

Jun 22, 2012

All the Small Things

[Love weekends at the seaside]

[A last minute O.A.R. concert - Corey was able to meet the band!]


[Little colorful boutiques along a boardwalk]
[Watching the Italy vs. Ireland game at an outside beer garden]

[Mini cheesecakes, "chocolate salami" cookies, coconut candy shaped like strawberries]

Jun 20, 2012

Beach-y Hair

If your hair is anything like mine, it is crazy and has a mind of it's own. Very few hair products can tame it without using damaging tools such as a blowdryer or a straightener. However, I have found, that a day at the beach proves to be my preferred hair styling procedure. It's something about the salt in the wind and the water that my hair thrives on. After a few hours of splashing around in the ocean and digging my feet into the sand, my hair transforms into a lovely cascade of waves and curls. 

Unfortunatly, because I have bills to pay and an expensive lifestyle to live, I must maintain a 9-5 job. This schedule clearly does not allow for many beach days and therefore my hair misses out on it's best stylings! Not okay. I'm sure you are aware of the products that exist that promise to make your hair look like you spent a day by the sea, but I am not about to drop $24 on a bottle of water that, for all I know, they could have just gotten from the Long Island Sound. So I thought, why not make my own? So that is what I did and you will not believe how simple it was.

First, find an empty (and clean!) spray bottle. I tied some seashells to it so I would be able to distinguish my new hair styling creation from a home-made cleaning solution.

Next, pour in 1 cup of warm tap water. Make sure that it's warm! Add 1 tsp of sea salt. Do not use table salt as a substitute because you will not achieve the same results. Next I added 1 tsp of a coconut hair conditioner, because it makes the spray smell divine and it will leave your locks smelling like a day on an island. Last, add 1 tsp of hair gel, to prevent frizz and to lock in your waves. Throw all those ingredients into the spray bottle, twist on the cap, and give it a good shake to make sure everything dissolves. 

Finally, it's time to give it a try! Start with clean, towel-dried hair...

Spritz your damp hair with the sea salt spray. Next, I used an old t-shirt to scrunch my hair. The reason I use an old t-shirt as opposed to a bath towel is because the rough texture of the towel causes my hair to frizz more than using a smooth t-shirt. Flip your head over and make sure to scrunch the hair underneath as well. Then, just let your hair air dry! So easy.

Since my hair can get pretty crazy and out of control,  I love tying the front pieces back, just to give it a more refined and under-control appearance. This hairstyle will leave your friends asking "where was my invite to the beach??"

Lipstick Anxiety

Lipstick can be intimidating and I’ve heard many girls exclaim that they just can’t wear it, that lipstick is not for them…and I may have been one of those girls. But I’ve also learned that when it comes to wearing lipstick, as with anything else, you just have to know a little bit of background on how to go about the process.

The biggest lipstick obstacle is finding the best color and shade for unique you. The search for your color can be daunting as stores overwhelm us with rainbows of pinks and reds and oranges and neutrals. There are obviously numerous stores and artists that offer a range of colors, but for me, Sephora acts as a one-stop-shop. 

First, think about whether you have a fair, medium or dark skin tone. Then, figure out what type of skin undertone you have, whether it is cool or warm. There’s an easy way to do this: Survey the veins on your inside wrists. If they seem blue, you have a cool undertone. If they look to be greenish, you have warm undertones.

[Bobbi Brown - Coral Pink]
Fair Skin:

DO: light browns, pinkish nudes, apricots and corals

DON’T: dark browns – they will look too severe against your porcelain skin

COOL undertones: nudes, light mocha, light mauve

WARM undertones: shell, sand, nude peach
[Bare Minerals - Plum Brulee]
Medium Skin:
DO: plums and raspberries, like deep burgundy
DON’T: nudes – they will be too close to your natural skin color and will wash you out.
COOL undertones: rosy pinks, pomegranates and cranberries
WARM undertones: bronze, copper, cinnamon
[Nars - Fast Ride]
Dark Skin:
DO: Deep reds and browns with hints of blue or purple
DON’T: anything orange – it will bring out yellow undertones and make you look drab
COOL undertones: raisin, wine and ruby reds
WARM undertones: honey, ginger and bronze

Makeup artist, Bobbi Brown, has said that you should find a lipstick that looks good even when you are wearing zero makeup and that the most flattering color will be one or two shades darker than your natural lip color. If you've bought lipsticks in the past and aren’t perfectly happy with the shade, don’t just throw them out! You can easily blend lipsticks to get a great lip color that works for you!
If you plan on playing up your lips with a bold color, make sure the rest of your makeup, especially your eye makeup, is light. If you want to wear heavy eye makeup, opt for a light gloss or lip color that doesn’t stand out, but rather complements your eyes.
Do you have any tricks that you've found helpful in the wide world of lipstick?

Jun 19, 2012

Minty Fresh

Without a doubt, mint is the new “it” color among fashionistas. It’s a refreshing, bright pastel, and I think it compliments all skin tones. I have been hesitant about this color because I am not a huuuge fan of pastels, but it certainly is growing on me. My first mint purchase was in the form of Sally Hansen’s “Mint Sorbet” nail polish and I’m obsessed with it. It has given me the motivation I needed to begin perusing stores for some mint colored clothing pieces and accessories. Below are some of my favorites that I have found in my searches...

The flow-y ness of this dress would be gorgeous during a beach bbq.

This simplistic bracelet would give the perfect pop of color on it's own, or would look amazing among a stack of bracelets.

When I first saw this shirt I pictured it with a pair of white skinny jeans. I love the sheer look of it!

There is nothing I love more than that minty shade paired with gold. Sooo classy. And I love how this ring looks vintage.

Are you all loving this new shade of green as much as I am? Have you made any mint purchases yourselves?

Jun 18, 2012

Bikini Babe

I went to the seaside this weekend and realized a very important thing: I’m in need of a new bathing suit…or two. Understandably so, bathing suit shopping isn’t my fave and thus I haven’t done it in a while. However, having a new bikini to wear definitely adds even more excitement to an already much-anticipated trip to the beach. 

When it comes to searching for the most flattering pieces, I don’t put too much thought into the bottoms as I don’t have much of a butt. On the other hand, I definitely need support in the chest area so finding the perfect top can be somewhat of a challenge. I’d love to be able to buy tops wherever my heart desires, aka Target, but alas, boob support is just about non-existent in that place and that’s not the prettiest sight to see.

As a result, I’ve come to rely solely on Victoria’s Secret for all my swimsuit specifications.  They’ve got boob support down to a science and I’ve got plenty of options from which to choose.

This halter style with the thick band underneath is my go-to top. It’s flattering and supportive and ties at the neck and back so it’s fully adjustable. It’s offered in a ton of different colors and patterns and I’m loving this tye-dye version for this summer.

This particular triangle top resembles a bra and it works just the same while staying sexy. It offers the least coverage so you can show off what your mama gave ya.

Once upon a time, I didn’t think bandeau bikini tops were possible for us busty ladies. I thought for sure they’d result in sagginess, which is just not something I’m looking for in my twenties. Luckily, the geniuses at VS have mastered the busty bandeau with underwire cups, a removable halter strap and possible push-up padding if you’re feeling frisky.

Are there any particular styles you’ve found work best for your body? Any stores you depend on for all your bathing suit needs?

Jun 15, 2012

All the Small Things

[A clock tower in Artimino, Italy]
[First strawberry of the season from the garden]
[Italia jersey for the European Cup - 
would've been better if Italy hadn't tied both their games...]

[The view from a picnic by the sea]
[Steak and sausage BBQ! Photo credit: Gianni Arico]
[Homemade wrap bracelet]