Digs I Dig: The Paris of the Midwest

What do you do when you leave your dream home in France for a new life in the not-always-thrilling American Midwest?  You could mope and miss what you used to have, or, like this couple, you can transform your new house into as close a replica as possible.  I love how airy and open all the rooms are, and it’s also great to see that so many furnishings are either well-traveled, antique, or from IKEA.  That’s the style for me.

For the original article and more photos, please click here.

Outfit: It’s Familiar, But Not Too Familiar

I know I’ve said this before, but I really think the weather is going to make a final turn into the chill breeziness of autumn.  Technically, of course, it is autumn, but do seasons and equinoxes really have meaning in a post-modern society?  I hardly think so.

All pretentious posturing aside, I figured that since it was likely the last of the warm weather, I better wear this dress one last time before it got too cold.  I bought it ages ago solely because of the print–I’m a sucker for anything that features dogs, and the pups on this dress are just too cute!

I don’t have any other dresses in my closet like this.  I’m not much of a halter girl, and I think that’s because the style is perhaps a little too retro for my taste.  However, I have to admit I love this dress, print or not.  It’s so twirly!  I took literally dozens of pictures of myself spinning around in it, none of which turned out so great.  A leg would be sticking out in an odd direction, my eyes would be half closed, and the skirt would have flown up just a little too high. I’m sure all the people out for strolls in the park found the whole thing extremely amusing.

Speaking of which, does anyone else have an embarrassing photo shoot story?  I hope I’m not the only one!

Necklace: old, ModCloth

Dress: ModCloth

Shoes: old, ModCloth

Behind the Camera: Richard P.

My photography knowledge is a little stunted.  I have a good amount of experience shooting myself–I get out my handy tripod, set the timer on my camera, and try to make myself look decent before I hear that shutter snapping–but I rarely stay put behind the camera and take pictures of other people.  I needed to try something new, so I asked my sartorially blessed friend, Richard, to humor me and let me do an outfit shoot with him.   Continue reading

The Liebster Award

Family, friends, loved ones, acquaintances, Moxie:

I’ve been nominated for the Liebster Award by the incredible Dalisse from The Tiny Canary.  If you don’t already follow her, go for it!  I love her style; she’s got a cool vintage/boho vibe that I’m all about.  In addition to her crisply chic outfit photos, she also posts beauty, fashion, and music reviews, so check her out!

Now, a little about the Liebster Award: it’s presented to bloggers by bloggers as a sign of appreciation to them and to help expose their blog for other viewers.  Let’s get going!

11 Random Facts About Me:

  1. I’ve colored my hair a lot since I was 13.  It all began with red tips–I think there’s a Medieval Times photo for documentation.  Since then, I’ve had pink tips and black streaks (not at the same time), and I’ve dyed it ginger and black.  I’m naturally a blonde–nowadays I just get highlights.
  2. When I was six years old, I took Tae Kwon Do lessons with my brother.  I was slow on my feet but extremely powerful–they called me the TANK.
  3. In college, I was a founder and president of the Quidditch team.  Oh, do I have stories from that era.
  4. Once, I threw an open container of yogurt at someone.  He deserved it.
  5. My first crush was on Luke Skywalker.  I’m more of a Han Solo girl these days.
  6. I have always lived on the top floor of every building I’ve ever inhabited.
  7. Most of you know this already, but I’m a dog mom!  I adopted Moxie as a three-month-old puppy from a shelter, and we’ve been inseparable ever since.
  8. As my day job, I’m a layout artist for a catalog.  You want InDesign help?  I’m there for you.
  9. I’m an ambivert.  While I tend to need a little alone time to recharge and can be fairly shy, I go a little stir crazy if I can’t socialize.  In fact, one of my performance reviews at work effectively stated that I’m cheerful and friendly but that I talk too much to my coworkers!
  10. Sometimes when I run and I’m listening to something really good, I can’t help but dance or air guitar a little.  “Digital Love” by Daft Punk is the biggest culprit.
  11. I’ve never been on a plane!  I’m absolutely planning on changing that!

Q and A:

  1. What inspired you to start your blog?

After college, I got stuck in a rut.  A decade and a half of my life had been dedicated to learning and extracurriculars, but once I was in the real world with a full-time job, I didn’t know what to do with myself.  I struggled with it for a long time, but I finally decided to get this blog going.  It incorporates so much of what I love–writing, learning, clothes, and people!

  1. Who is your favorite style icon?

I don’t really have a particular one.  I don’t follow celebrities or designers, but I do have a ton of blogger inspirations.

  1. Can you name two of your favorite bloggers and explain why they are your favorites?

I’m only going to name one, because she was and is my biggest inspiration:  Rebecca from A Clothes Horse.  She’s a wonderful stylist and photographer–her pictures have an enchanting, almost magical quality.  Because of her, I strive with every single post to imagine better outfits and take better photos.  I don’t know if I’ll ever achieve the quality of her blog, but shoot for the moon, right?

  1. What’s the one wardrobe essential you can’t live without?

My leopard print pointed-toe flats.  They go with everything!

  1. How would you describe your blogging style?

I suppose “me” isn’t an acceptable answer, but I do like to instill as much of my personality as possible into this blog.  I love telling stories–so much so that sometimes the copy in my outfit posts has nothing to do with the outfit itself!

  1. What is your greatest achievement outside of blogging?

I graduated summa cum laude with a degree in English literature!

  1. What was the last book you read?

I’m nearing the end of Quiet by Susan Caine.  In it, she describes how the role of introverts in America (and most of the West) is seriously underplayed, and she backs it up with plenty of research.  It’s a book that has made me really examine myself and others, and I highly recommend it!

  1. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?

I want to go all over the place.  Really.  Put me on a plane and send me anywhere.

  1. Where do you see yourself in five years?

I can’t see the future, but I know it’s watching me.

10. What was the first movie or book that made an impact on your life?

 Little House in the Big Woods.  The entire Little House series has stuck with me my entire life.  I fell in love with the books as a child for its rich depictions of pioneer life, and I still love it as an adult–there’s so much more to it than I ever thought possible.  Feminism, racism, history, storytelling, it’s all there.

  1. What advice would you give someone who just started blogging?

Don’t get caught up in numbers.  There have been a few times when I considered shutting down this blog because I didn’t think I was meeting arbitrary follower/comment/like goals, but come on!  That’s ridiculous!  Stick with your blog and make sure you can always answer “yes” to this question: Are you better at it today than you were yesterday?

Also, get involved!  I’ve made some really wonderful blogger friends–people whom I truly care about and who are always there to support and encourage me.

Here are my 11 nominees:

You don’t have to do this, but of course I wanted to recognize youse guys!
1) Lindsey of Have Clothes, Will Travel
2) Mona of Curls & Cakes
3) Cami of Yours Truly, Freckle Face
4) Hanh of Hanhgry
5) Liana of Finding Femme
6) Alexandra of Larkspur Vintage
7) Laura of Fox Trails
8) Grace of the eponymously named gracevanderson.com
9) Lauren of Musings of a Flower Child
10) Anna of Melodic, Thrifty & Chic
11) Chiara of The Sartorial Coquette

Outfit: Always Snow in Your Driveway

Friends, I’m writing this post from the comfort of my kitchen table, where I’m munching on a sugar cookie and letting Moxie sweep up the crumbs I’m leaving all over the floor.  My tummy’s full of chicken parm, bruschetta, and wine.  It’s been a long day of celebration–today was my baby cousin’s christening, and I’ve been named as her godmother.

I wouldn’t consider myself a “kids person” by any means, but I love my cousin’s two babies so much that it made my grinch heart grow three sizes.  Getting to be that little girl’s godmother is a huge honor for me, and I was so happy to fulfill my godmotherly duties this morning and afternoon.  I’m so excited to watch her grow up and be there with her as she does!

Anyway, a word about this outfit (which, no, I did not wear to the christening): I was running low on laundry and ended up throwing these two patterns together, and somehow I think I hit the jackpot.  I’ve been really into pattern mixing lately, and now I feel like I’m hitting my stride.  I love this ensemble; I look like someone’s Italian auntie from the 1960s.

Also, a word about the next outfit post I’ll be doing: instead of featuring my ugly mug, I finally got around to snapping pictures of my dashing friend, Richard.  I’m currently editing those photos and am really excited about how they’ve turned out so far.

Headband: old, Forever 21

Sunglasses: old, ModCloth

Necklace: old, ModCloth

Top: old, ModCloth

Skirt: vintage

Heels: old, Seychelles

Outfit: I Want To Know; Can You Tell Me?

The last time I took pictures here, it was a barely-above-freezing day at the start of summer.  How appropriate to come back just as the weather begins to turn cold again?  Once again, I have to declare my love for this magnificent forest preserve and all its nooks and niches.  It’s the sort of place that, even when there are tons of people out and about, always yields a good spot where no one bothers me.

I’m quite excited for the season of warmer hats, socks, and sweaters!  Perhaps it’s because I’m a winter baby, but I always feel a little out of place during the spring and summer.  Summer just feels wispy to me.  I can’t wear as many clothes as I want to (I’m big into layering) and the drinks suck (iced herbal tea?  Come on).  Not so with fall.  It’s such a robust season, don’t you think?  In fact, my love for autumn has grown so much over the years that I’ve begun to love every aspect of it–even the things I traditionally hated, such as football.  (Mom–we’ll talk about that; I know you’re surprised.)

So here’s to the season of PSLs, old man sweaters, delicious food, bright colors, crisp air, and crunching through fallen leaves with my best friend, Moxie.

Hat: old, Urban Outfitters

Sweater: thrifted

Dress: old, ModCloth

Necklace: old, Stitch Fix

Socks: old, Forever 21

Shoes: old, B.A.I.T Footwear

P.S. In a few days, as promised, I will be doing a shoot with one of my friends.  Finally, you’ll get to see pictures of someone besides me mugging at the camera!!

Closet Raid: Klara of The Robot That Had a Heart

A few months ago, I stumbled upon Klara’s fairy tale-esque Instagram feed, and she quickly became one of my biggest inspirations.  She has a gift for telling stories through her photos and drawing you into their narratives.  Part of this has to do with her expert photography–she takes many of her own photos–but there is also a special quality to them that I can’t put a name to!

Of course, not only does she create beautiful images, but her style is impeccable.  I love the feminine silhouettes and strong echoes of the past as well as the soft, pretty colors that are found in each outfit.  On top of that, many of her clothes are handmade, so how’s that for talent?!

As I continue to learn the ropes of photography and style blogging, I often refer back to her blog for ideas.  Or, you know, if I want to forget about the mundane world of industrial supplies and suburbs!  If you’d like to check out more, please visit Klara’s blog, The Robot That Had a Heart.