Pretty Please: Clinique Chubby Sticks

I’ve probably mentioned this once (or twice, or sixty times), but I’m not much of a makeup girl, especially in the summer.  Besides thick, thick eyelashes, all I want is a pretty pout.  I have a bouquet of Revlon stains in my makeup bag, but I want to try something new.  Enter Clinque: they have a set of sixteen (!) lip balms, and I’m in love with almost all of them.  In particular, because I’m a red lip kinda girl, I’m craving the Two Ton Tomato.  And since I’m due for a trip to Clinique soon, anyway (I swear by their facial soap), I may as well pick up a little treat while I’m there.

Outfit: Rainy Day in June

After a long weekend that included a beautiful Michigan wedding for my cousin and traipsing around Chicago with a handsome Australian, I needed a quiet Monday.  Thankfully, Moxie was so pooped from her two-night stay at daycare that she actually let me sleep in.  No growling at birds.  No walking on my hair.  Just sleeping.

When I finally awoke from my blessedly extended beauty rest, I had hardly anything to do besides dress up, take these photos, and take my sweet time editing them.  I never thought I’d be as interested in editing as I am now!  Every time I take pictures, I seem to find something new to try.  This time, I wanted to give these photos a more vintage, film-like style, which meant I got to play around with the tone curve in LightRoom for the first time.  By adjusting it a certain way, it makes all the black in a photo look matte, which mimics the way it would look on film.  I tried doing this without sacrificing too much of the vibrancy of the rest of the colors, but I think it’ll take some more tweaking before I’ve got this down perfectly.

I’m disappointed with the way this dress looks here.  In person, I thought it looked cute on me, but seeing it in these pictures makes it seem a bit shapeless.  I should have listened to my tailor and had it taken in at the waist!  Since the dress was on sale when I bought it, I may as well pay the balance in getting it to fit right.

Dress: old, Emily & Fin

Shoes: old, TopShop

Clutch: ModCloth

Earrings: old, ModCloth

Necklace: vintage

Outfit: Gonna Be On My Way

Dresses have this mind-boggling reputation for being a dress-up item, which I find odd because they’re really the laziest piece of clothing you could put on.  What could possibly be more simple than throwing something over your head and calling it a day?  Now that summer appears to be sticking around for a little bit, I can’t bring myself to wear anything else.

This particular one is a little older, but I love how fairy-like it makes me feel.  It’s so light that the overskirt drifts along the slightest breath of air.  Very sylvan, no?

I’ve taken so many pictures at the mill, but I never seem to run out of different backdrops over there!  This bridge across Salt Creek felt perfect for the day, although I have to admit that I wish it looked a little more…rustic.  Perhaps stone?  Perhaps with a troll lurking underneath?

Maybe when I move, there’ll be one like that.

Necklace: old, Forever 21

Dress: old, ModCloth

Watch: Olivia Burton

Shoes: old, ModCloth

Bag: old, ModCloth

Digs I Dig: 1850s Church/2010s Home

You should probably know that I’m crazy about everything old-timey.  My first job was as a copywriter for an antiques store, and I’ve spent a few summers volunteering as a guide in an 1830s post office and an antebellum family home.  This house speaks to me.  I love the idea of converting a building with so much history into a livable space.  It keeps that place’s narrative alive, much like incorporating a vintage dress into your wardrobe or adding antique furniture to your home.

There’s so much light in this home!  Spaces with so much natural light make me happy just to look at them–maybe it’s the prospect of so much vitamin D streaming in through the windows.  I also love interiors where the decorations and ephemera and collections are harmoniously organized, like that red gallery wall in the dining room.  A little well-chosen clutter is an A+ in my book.

Check out more photos here.

Outfit: The Forest Awakes

Right now, I’m feeling a bit under the weather.  Luckily, after a doctor visit and lots of good care from Moxie (who is a wonderful nurse, incidentally), I am on the mend and almost ready to take on the work day.  Almost.

So here’s the thing.  I took these pictures while I was sick.  I shouldn’t have.  I should have used that time to stay in bed and rest (read: watch Parks and Rec and drink lots of tea), but I didn’t.  I had been thinking about how the weekend ahead was going to be busy, so I wouldn’t have time to take pictures then.  I figured today was going to be best if I wanted to do two outfit posts for the week.

It’s fair to say that most of you, my readers, are bloggers yourselves, so you know it’s no easy task to put together an outfit post.  I’ve been stressing out about how much time I spend working on this blog and feeling like I have to commit to a set schedule and worrying about finding time to fit it in with moving, seeing friends, dating, working, and being a puppy mom.  Which is sort of the opposite of what I hoped would happen.

I started this blog because I wanted to do something that made me feel fulfilled, and this absolutely fits the bill.  It takes effort and creativity, and I even had to teach myself a little bit about photography.  But I’ve gotten to a point where I feel like I have to do it a certain way and post a certain amount, and that’s no good.

I’ve been thinking about what I should do, and it’s either going to be a short hiatus, or I’m going to cut down how often I post–I’m leaning toward the latter.  And that’s perfectly okay.  I have to keep telling myself that.

Yikes.  Sorry for all of that.  Are you still here?  If you are, here’s what I have on:

Ring: antique

Jacket: old, H & M

Dress: old, ModCloth

Shoes: ModCloth

Purse: ModCloth

Girl About Town: Brewpoint Coffee Company

A while back, I mentioned how I decided to have an impromptu Treat Yo Self Day.  It involved a manicure, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle macaroni and cheese, and a pit stop at Brewpoint for a perfectly ambrosial cup of coffee.

That’s how good this place is.  Whenever I go there, it feels special.  While I wait for my drink to be made, I love looking around.  Souvenirs and travel books abound in the little nooks and crannies around the shop–it always gives me the travel bug.

Not to mention the names of the drinks!  The specialty lattes are all named after famous explorers, like Lewis & Clark and Marco Polo.  How can you not dream of sailing around the world after taking a sip of the Bartolome? (Side note: go read about Bartolome de las Casas.  He was a pretty cool dude.)

Of course, the names of the drinks are one thing, but the lattes themselves are out of this world (sorry, couldn’t resist a dad joke).  My favorite is the Bartolome, the shop’s signature drink–pictured above with the lovely lemon poppyseed muffin.  Espresso, coconut-almond milk, cinnamon, and magic.  I want to try all the other drinks, but I normally can’t resist this one.  I have had the Vespucci, though, which has a pumpkin espresso base with cinnamon and marshmallow.  Does that even sound real?

Also, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention how friendly the staff is, in a way that makes you feel at home.  A big thank you to Amara, my barista, and Melissa, one of the owners, for letting me pop in to take pictures and savor some tasty fare.  (That’s the two of them, left to right, in the last picture.)

If your travels ever bring you to Chicago, I would definitely recommend making a quick trip to Elmhurst to visit Brewpoint!

Outfit: Bring Me Your Loves

Last week, Capsule Vintage was having a sale, and I immediately scooped up this sweet ’60s number.  I have absolutely no other orange clothing in my closet, which makes this dress seem like a brilliant flash of sunshine every time I open the door.  I wanted to have some fun with this shoot, so I even dug out my trusty ol’ petticoat for some extra oomph.

And while taking pictures was fun, I had kind of a strange feeling afterward.  I had to go to the store, and I felt so awkward clipping down the Walgreens aisles in my poofy dress and milkmaid braids.  I guess that’s a natural enough reaction, but man, 15-year-old me would be disappointed.

I miss the attitude I had toward clothing as a teenager.  Caring about what my classmates thought about my bustle dresses, corsets, and parasols simply wasn’t at the top of my list.  I was happy to swan about the hallways looking like a mixed-up Victorian dandy.

As I grew older, though, I decided to move in a different direction, and now I feel like I’ve struck a good balance–my look is more or less vintage-inspired, but old-fashioned duds don’t overwhelm me.  Still, there are days I wish I could still pull off a sunny ’60s dress while I’m refilling my prescriptions…

Sunglasses: ModCloth

Dress: Capsule Vintage

Shoes: old, ModCloth