LA Art Scene: All the Summer Exhibits You Can't Miss

Urban Lights at LACMA Museum Los Angeles
LA Art Museums
Urban Lights LACMA
LACMA Museum Los Angeles

Exploring art museums and galleries is one of my favorite ways to pass time. NYC is full of options, but since I moved to LA I needed to spend sometime getting to explore the art scene here. At first I wanted to spend as much time outside as possible, but since the weather has suddenly gotten crazy hot it’s time for more fun in the AC. Here are a few of the exhibits on my list to check out this summer, everywhere from Santa Monica to DTLA!

Soul of a Nation at the Broad

This exhibit will be on view until September and explores contributions of Black artists from the civil rights movement through the 80’s. LA based artists will also be specifically highlighted for their often overlooked role in the art and history of the civil rights movement. Get tickets here!

40 for LA at MOCA

MOCA, LA’s Museum of Contemporary Art is celebrating their 40 year anniversary with a multimedia exhibition features archives from the museum’s vault, including rare photographs and lithographs, limited-edition objects and a special homage to all of the artists to whom the museum is indebted. This is your chance to understand some of the key elements that defined the museum and made it what it is today. Tickets and visiting information here!

Take Me Out to the Ball Game at The Grammy Museum

The Grammy Museum is unique with it’s focus on the cultural impact of music throughout generations. Take Me Out to the Ball Game highlights how the rise of baseball and baseball music ushered in a new era of American music in the early 1900s and the eventual impact it had on modern, popular music genres from pop to R&B. And while you are there, don’t miss the Backstreet Boys experience if you want to relive some of your favorite 90’s jams. Visitor’s info here!

The Liberator at California African-American Museum

The Liberator was an early 20th-century newspaper that documented the emerging African American population in Los Angeles. Founded in 1900 by Jefferson Lewis Edmonds, a former slave who advocated for improved social and economic conditions for African-Americans the publication reported on local, national, and international news and portrayed Los Angeles as a city of hope for African Americans and an escape from the violence and hardship they experienced in the South. This exhibit sheds light on paper’s contributions to city’s rapidly increasing black population and its challenges in a post-Reconstruction era. Details here!

Anything at LACMA

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) isn’t just a hot spot for Instagram pics! It’s the largest art museum in the western United States and has a whole host of unique seasonal exhibitions and an impressive core collection. Considering it’s size, give yourself plenty of time to try to take it all in.

Fearless Fashion at the Skirbal Center

Obviously this fashionista wouldn’t miss an exhibit dedicated to style! Fearless Fashion explores the visionary and progressive ensembles by LA based designer Rudi Gernreich. Rudi introduced the monokini, thongs, unisex caftans, pantsuits for women that transcended rigid social expectations and championed authenticity above all. Check out the retrospective on his work through September 1st.

Contact High at the Annenberg Space for Photography

If you are a hip-hop head, don’t miss this one! This exhibit chronicles the work of hip-hop photographers that played a role in bringing the music genre’s visual culture to the global stage. Get an intimate look at contact sheets from portrait sessions with hip-hop legends like Biggie Smalls, Jay-Z and Kendrick Lamar. Rare videos, memorabilia, and music are also on display.

LA Can't Miss Art Exhibits

Let me know which ones you check out and what you think!

The Amazon Prime Day Beauty and Fashion Deals You Can't Miss!

TFW you can shop and save without leaving your bed!

TFW you can shop and save without leaving your bed!

Getting the Most From Online Shopping

It’s Black Friday in July! This week both the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale and Amazon Prime Day kick off. I’m not covering the Nordstrom sale this year, so decided to scour the internet for the best Prime Day deals so you don’t have to! I’ve been shopping Amazon a lot more since I moved and the assortment has gotten so good, especially in fashion and beauty. If you are planning to shop Prime Day sales, here are a few of my favorite items I’ve noticed on site.

Remember, deals are only available to Prime members, but you can sign up for a 30 day trial if you just want to shop the sale. Amazon Prime Day runs from 12 a.m. PST on Monday, July 15, through 11:59 p.m. PST on Tuesday, July 16 and the best items will go fast so be ready!

Amazon Prime Day Fashion and Beauty Guide

Amazon Prime Day Luxury Beauty Deals

The first place to start your Prime Day shopping should definitely be the Luxury Beauty page! There will be sales on coveted beauty products, like Tatcha’s Gente Rice Enzyme Powder, Sunday Riley’s Good Genes Serum, Clarisonic face brushes and Stila color cosmetics. Plus Lady Gaga’s new beauty line Haus Laboratories will be available for preorder!

If you’ve been in the market for some hair tools, there will be plenty to choose from as well. Have you seen Insta or YouTube tutorials of those weird hair curlers where a piece of hair is inserted and comes out perfectly curled? One of those is the INFINITIPRO BY CONAIR Curl Secret and will be on sale! And there are a few straightening brushes at 30-45% off, plus plenty of traditional flat irons and curlers as well. Shop my picks below!

Amazon Prime Day Fashion Deals

This category is pretty big, so if there is something on your list or trend you’ve been wanting to rock, get ready to search! I can tell you that I found discounts on the Fila Women's Disruptor II, my favorite dad sneakers that I’ve been wearing all summer. Reebok and Puma also have kicks going for 40% off , and there are gorgeous booties from Schutz that will be perfect for Fall.

The already affordable Amazon Essentials line will also be discounted, so you can stock up on basics like tees, tanks and bralettes for summer.

Other Amazon Prime Day Savings

If you don’t feel like spending right now, you can still take advantage of Prime Day sales. If you download and sign in to the Amazon app for the first time, you'll get a $10 Amazon credit and an additional one when you make a purchase on the app. If you have an Amazon Gift card laying around, reload it for the chance to get a bonus credit. AmazonFresh is also offering $15 off orders of $35+ for new customers and you can save up to 40% off groceries.

Also a lot of other retailers tend to drop their prices or have additional discounts around Prime Day to compete with Amazon, so stay tuned to some of your favorite sites to catch any last minute savings.

Let me know what sales you are most psyched about! And remember you can always shop my Amazon faves here!

All the Trends to Rock this Summer!

Ethical Fashion Design Trend

The best season of the year is in full swing! Summer is full of long sunny days and nights that require easy, breezy fun pieces that keep you stylish and comfy. This summer I’ve been really into bold prints and patterns and easy footwear that gets me through morning noon and night. I try to avoid spending a lot on summer clothes, since I’m generally not a huge shopper, but I do like to refresh my look a bit to make things more fun. Here are a few of the trends I love this season and how I’m rocking them!

Palm Tree Pants OOTD

Printed Separates and Crop Tops

I can’t resist a bold print, and when it comes on a pair of billowy pants even better! The palm tree pattern is perfect for my new home here in LA! Plus since I’ve been trying to step up my workouts and diet I feel much more confident stepping out in a tiny crop top. This tie-front version bares a good amount of skin but still feels elegant, so you can def dress it up or down, but I suggest keeping the bottom high-waisted so you have a bit more coverage.

How to Rock Red for Summer

The Summer Power Dress

When I think power dress, what usually comes to mind is a structured silhouette in a bold color, probably paired with some killer heels. To get that vibe in a more relaxed, summery feel I prefer a statement making maxi dress. Options with a more classic silhouette like a wrap dress or with a more structured hem work nicely for the office or an evening out. And they go great with pretty much any shoe in your wardobe, from sandals, heels to dad sneakers!

Midi Dress Trend

The Granny Chic Sundress

It’s a guilty pleasure, but I love a hint of something granny-esque in my #OOTDs! I love dresses like this ditzy floral midi dress since it’s comfy and casual enough for brunch and rooftop hopping, with just a bit of old school elegance. The slightly boxy fit makes it effortless and cool, not sexy like a more body-skimming style. Plus it’s light and airy enough for even a scorching summer day!

Shop these looks and some of my other favorite pieces for the season below!

Summer Trends Under $100

Personal Shopping Made Easy with Stylust

Asos Yellow Blazer

Keeping my wardrobe updated is essential, but shopping really isn’t my thing. I avoid it as much as possible, finding new ways to style old favorites and finding ways to get new goodies without the pain of spending hours going in and out of stores. So when the Stylust team reached out to me for a partnership I was so excited to try it! Stylust is a service that puts a personal shopper in your pocket. It’s free to use and super easy! Say you are scrolling through Instagram or Pinterest and see something you want. Just text them the picture and they will source the item for you! You can also tag them in your Instagram pics if you see something in your feed and instantly want it.

Parisian Outfit Inspiration
Summer Dressing in Paris
Asos Yellow Blazer
What to Wear in Paris

They can find the exact item in minutes, let you know the price and if you approve it, place the order for you. Pretty sweet right? If the item turns out to be out of stock or out of budget, they can also find similar alternatives for you.

The first thing I knew I wanted was a chic yellow blazer, but I had no time to look in stores or browse the whole internet looking. I found an inspo pic on Instagram, and texted them a screenshot, and moments later I had options! I didn’t love the first round, so asked for other options, and eventually went with this mustard yellow double breasted baby from Asos. It arrived at my place a few days later, and it was simple as that.

Plus it doesn’t stop at clothing! Stylust also sourced a gorgeous burgundy storage ottoman for my new apartment. It took a little bit of back and forth before I found one in my price range that also had storage, but the final one could not be more perfect.


France Lookbook and What to do if Your Luggage is Lost!

French Travel Style

Travel is an adventure and sometimes the craziness starts right at the airport! My trip to France started perfectly normal. I had packed a selection of fun outfits and product for collaborations all edited carefully so it would fit in my carry on. I knew that I would be moving in between several cities over the week so wanted to pack light enough to make all the travel easier

Nice France Travel.jpg

However I couldn't get around the weight limits imposed by Norweigan! Most low cost airlines have pretty strict requirements on size and weight for carry on bags, and even though my suitcase was fine size wise, it was about 4 pounds over the weight limit. Their weight limit is only 10kg, which equals around 22 pounds. And that has to include both your carry on and personal item! The gate agent made me check it and I wasn't too worried since it was a direct flight so less chance for it to get mixed up or delayed. Little did I know, there would be some major logistic issue with the baggage carousels. When I landed in Paris, an agent at baggage claim informed me that over 150 bags from the LA flight had been misplaced!  Normally, if I plan to check luggage, I would have an extra outfit or 2 in my carry on. But since I was rushed and made to check last minute I didn't take anything out of the suitcase. Big mistake, I know! So there I was in Paris with the clothes on my back. Luckily I kept my toiletries and makeup in my carry on so I could still keep my face and hair together!

Making the situation even worse, our flight was an hour and a half late, which meant that by the time I could get from the airport to the city, all the stores would be closed. I only had one day in Paris before heading to Nice so my boyfriend helped with the missing baggage report and as soon as I landed in Nice I needed to shop! At that point I had spent 2 days in my airport leggings, crop top and dad sneaks and it was starting to get funky. 

Tips for a Lost Luggage Complaint

If you didnt know, airlines are responsible for reimbursing you if you need to purchase replacement items when your baggage is delayed or lost. The exact amount and procedure for filing a claim varies, but in the European Union, airlines can be liable for up to 1300 euros! At that point I assumed my bag would be retuned in 2 or 3 days, but I also knew this was my only chance to shop. After Nice I would be spending 3 days in the French countryside, with plenty of vineyards but no malls! I decided I needed to get clothes for 3 days and 1 dress that was glam enough for a night out in Monaco. And I hoped that my luggage would be sent to the residence in the countryside no problem. 

Satin Polka Dot Dress
Classic French Inspired Style

Remember, just because the airline is liable for reimbursement, that doesnt mean you get to go crazy.  Skip Gucci and shop sensibly! I opted for Zara, H&M and Mango. Check out some of the looks I pulled together below! I was able to find a lot of the exact items on the US site, luckily, and included some alternatives as well!

Pretty good choices right? I also picked up some basic undies from H&M and the tote bag was necessary to use for travelling the rest of the week, since I couldn't lug around shopping bags. However my luggage did not arrive in the country as expected since the Courier said it was too far from the main city and they needed a 3 to 4 day window for that region (which was 2.5 hours from Paris, 30 minutes from the local airport in Bordeaux so go figure). So I had to handwash and line dry a few pieces country style and wear them again as I headed back to Paris! My bag was finally delivered to my hotel on the last day of the trip!

Lost Luggage Claim Tips


So if you find yourself in a missing baggage situation here are my tips for getting through!

  1. File your claim asap - the representative at the airport can give you the necessary paperwork so they can start tracking the lost luggage

  2. Learn your rights - they vary depending on the origin/departure city but check out what the carrier says and go a quick Google search. Norwegian's website obviously wouldn't say the max they can be held liable for, but researching "delayed baggage compensation in Europe" turned up loads of info from European regulatory sites. If you file a claim and the airline tries to underpay or claim they arent responsible, you need to know your rights to fight for your money 

  3. Shop reasonably - remember it is time to purchase replacement items for your trip, not go on a luxury shopping spree

  4. Save your receipts! And take photos just in case you lose the originals

  5. Include all your expenses - i didn't have to buy toiletries since I had those in my carry on, but if you lost those include them as well. If you have to make international phone calls every day to follow up with customer service, add in the roaming charges! Think about the little things and make sure they are all included

  6. Leverage social media - the Norweigan customer service center was so not responsive or helpful, even though they had English speaking representatives. But when I started blowing up their mentions on Twitter I got more attention. And not just me! I looked at their Tweets/Replies and saw different users airing their concerns and getting responses as well. Help your complaint stay stop of mind by making it visible!

I’ll keep you guys posted once my claim is processed on what the final result is, but let me know in the comments or on Instagram if you have questions in the meantime!

#NYCStories: What Life in NYC Has Taught Me

New York City Glam

I started posting a series on Instagram sharing some of my favorite NYC Stories. Growing up in this city has shaped me in ways I’m slowly becoming more and more aware of as I get older and travel more. If you don’t live in NY, living here is like no place else. If you are planning a move or even a trip, here are some things you need to know to make the most of your experience!

Advenures in NYC
The Plaza Hotel NYC
The Plaza Hotel NYC
The Plaza NYC

NYC Life & Travel are Expensive

If you’ve never been here before, the prices wil be shocking! Growing up in the city made me a little more used to seeing extreme prices at every turn. That skill comes in really handy when traveling because I rarely get sticker shock (except for in Switzerland, where the combination of pricing and exchange rate is insane). Save up and prepare yourself and your wallet for outlandish rent, overpriced restaurants, $15 cocktails, and a view that can bring tears to your eyes.

You’ll Make a Lot of Friends But Only Have a Few Friends

Living here means you are constantly surrounded by people. The opportunities to socialize are endless and you’ll be able to meet new people at every turn. However I’ve learned that true friendships and authentic bonds are few and far between. In retrospect I wish I had devoted more time to those relationships, but it seemed we often took for granted that we could see each other any time. Have all the fun you can with all the right people, but make sure you find ways to prioritize the relationships that really count.

Street Food Is Always a Good Idea

From the halal stands to the gyro carts, NY street food is legendary. If you are germophobic or nervous about eating off a truck, start working on that before you land in the Big Apple! Of course the city is known for it’s concentration of incredible high-end restaurants, but considering the need to respect your wallet as discussed above, make sure you explore the low-cost options that can be just as delicious!

The Options Are Endless and the Familiar is Comforting

The city that never sleeps is also the city of endless options. There is so much amazing everything - restaurants, museums, lounges, and the list goes on. Anything your heart desires, you will find and it will be good! Even though we are spoiled for choice, you’ll see that New Yorkers often frequent the same spots! You might think we bounce around to a new place every night, but the fact is we all have our neighborhood bar or go to restaurant that we hit up a few times a week. If you visit NYC or make it your home, find the balance between visiting your faves on a regular basis and exploring something new when you can.

tips for living in nyc

If you are planning to move or visit NYC, let me know your questions in the comments!

3 Key Pieces to Make Summer Dressing A Breeze!

Summer Outfit Ideas

We’re just about a week away from the unofficial start of summer! Memorial Day weekend is about to kick off and since it’s time to spend more time having fun in the sun, I wanted to share my quick and easy #OOTD formula to make getting ready a breeze! If you consider yourself a lazy dresser but want to play with separates instead of throwing on a tired sundress, stay tuned for one of my go to outfit combinations!

summer ootd goals
easy summer outfit ideas
red top mom jeans ootd
summer dressing outfit ideas

Even though my boyfriend despises them, I am absolutely obsessed with mom jeans! They are so comfy and chic, and give you an instant cool girl vibe. I rock them with everything from crop tops and bodysuits in spring and summer, and sweaters and blazers for cooler months. My favorite pairs are in medium wash denim and a pale blue that is perfect for summer. Add a feminine printed blouse and you are ready to go!

I’ve also been really into clear plastic totes! It sounds crazy but they are surprisngly chic. It also gives me a chance to get more of my pretty clutches into regular rotation since I stash anything I don’t want fully visible in one of them then pop it in the tote. Plus they are super affordable, with mine going for under $30 on Amazon!

Let me know your go-to pieces for summer and how you style them! And shop the story below!

3 key pieces for summer dressing

3 Affordable Fashion Sites to Shop for Summer!

affordable fast fashion.jpg
affordable fast fashion sites.jpg
spring cherry blossoms.jpg

Guess what guys! I did my first podcast! Yes, yours truly made a guest appearance on the Starengu podcast this week. We discussed my favorite in flight beauty rituals and how I juggle my demanding day job with my side hustle as a blogger/influencer. And of course we chatted a bit about shopping and fashion. I love curating a wardrobe that is timeless and adaptable. However I do like to sprinkle in trendy pieces seasonally for quick easy updates.

Since it was so great discussing on the podcast, I decided to give you guys a bit more info on some of my favorite and most affordable fast fashion sites. Check out my top 4 below!

Shein

Shein is a classic Instagram fashion site with thousands of items at prices as low as $5! Sizing can be hit or miss, but I've found that with careful measurements and maybe a quick stop at your local tailor you can make a cheapie dress look like a million (ok fine maybe a hundred) bucks! I’ve shopped the site several times and am rarely disappointed.

Just don't even think about retuning,  the cost and time it will take to ship isnt worth it. Sell on Poshmark or give to a friend and move on.

Also at checkout you'll have the option to pay a small fee to insure your package, which I suggest you do. If you don't take the insurance you are on your own in case the package gets lost or stolen. Its usually under $3 depending on the order total so a small price to pay for peace of mind. 

Amazon

Amazon has a crazy wide selection of affordable, fashionable items and most are super cheap and include prime shipping. Just be prepared to browse patiently because the search results are extensive and navigation isn't the easiest. But I've found everything from stylish, sexy swimwear to dresses,  and even the perfect clear plastic tote. If you are nervous about fit/sizing just turn on the free returns filter as you start browsing. 

Showpo

I worked with Showpo earlier this year and they are a great fashion find! The Australian retailer sells a huge assortment of products at low prices and with fast shipping. Everything I got looked just as expected and is surprisingly great quality considering their low prices. Plus the shipping is pretty fast and returns are allowed, but for store credit only and shipping is on you, so shop carefully!

Let me know yor fave fast fashion sites, and don’t forget to tune into the Starengu podcast to hear the full interview!

fast fashion shopping guide



Not the Met Gala but Still Fun! Black Tie Galas You Can Actually Get into

Met Gala Red Carpet Fashion

Today is a national fashion holiday – the Met Gala! Every fashionista is ready to pull up a chair and stay glued to their phones and social media for a first look at what everyone will be wearing on the red carpet. I’ve never been huge on awards shows, but I love the Met Gala! The looks are always so much more creative and inspiring than your typical red carpet, and I love seeing how celebs interpret the theme each year. This year’s theme is Camp: Notes on Fashion, so I’m expecting to see a whole lot of TOO MUCH on the red carpet tonight and I’m hoping my favorite celebs take risks and have fun. 

 Obviously, I’m not attending the Met Gala tonight, but I do love going to the occasional gala or black-tie function. It’s always great to get uber glam and go out to show support of a cause, but the ticket prices can be astronomical! Because I’m all about living your most glam, but affordable life, I scoured the internet for the best galas with tickets you can actually afford! They are still not cheap tickets, but some start as low as $100, which is just a little bit more than dinner/drinks out in the city or a new Zara dress. Check out the list below and save this post for future reference! 

Met Gala Red Carpet Style
Met Museum NYC
Ready for the Met Gala

 Black Tie Events Coming Up This Month

 

Harlem Nights 2019 - Harlem Rotary & Active Plus Gala

May 10, Tickets for $100-$130

 The Rotary Club of Harlem is one of 35,000+ clubs that work together to promote peace, fight disease, provide clean water, sanitation, and hygiene, save mothers and children, support education and grow local economies.Their annual gala is inspired by the classic film, Harlem Nights so get ready to bring your 1920’s glam! Get tickets here

 Navigating the Future: City Living NY's Annual Fundraiser

May 14, Tickets for $100

CITY LIVING NY’s mission is to empower youth aging out of foster care to successfully transition into adulthood by providing concrete resources, tools, and support services. This gala honors the work of those who made their missions possible and raises funds for their 2019-2020 service year. Get your tickets here. 

Tomorrow's Smile Today Gala 

May 16, Tickets for $100

 Tomorrow's Smile Today is a registered non-profit organization founded to provide education, information, and treatment to under-served populations worldwide and here in the United States. This year’s gala will focus on their recent work in Kenya and will provide supporters with more information about their Summer 2019 missions. Get your tickets here.

 

Galas and Events to Save for Next Year

 

These are events I’ve been to myself, but the dates have passed. Pin the graphic below and reference this post when it’s time to buy tickets!

 The Guggenheim Museum Young Collectors Party

The art museums flagship event is a blast! The YCC is a group of young professionals who enjoy private programs led by curators, a dedicated calendar of events, and invitations to parties and opening receptions. This is their annual formal event and tickets usually run between $200-250. Check out the Guggenheim’s Instagram for scenes from this year’s event and follow their social or website to find out about 2019 tickets! 

The Museum of the City of New York Harlem Whiskey Renaissance

The Museum of the City of New York is one of my favorites. It’s all about celebrating the history and culture of NY. They have several galas and events through the year, but one not to miss is the Harlem Whiskey RenaissanceGala. The party has a lighter tone than some ofhte more traditional benefits and fundraisers, as it celebrates whiskey and its storied past as the drink of choice for artisans and intellectuals during the Harlem Renaissance. Plus I see a discount on Pulsd for this event every year, giving you about half off the already affordable tickets! 

Let me know what summer events you can’t wait to attend, and of course your favorite looks on the Met Gala red carpet! 

getting into a gala

 

 

Everything to Do in NY This Spring!!

where to see cherry blossoms in ny.jpeg

Spring has officially been here for a few weeks, but it’s finally starting to feel like it! The weather is warming up and the days are getting longer, so it’s time to get out and start enjoying the new season. NYC is beautiful this time of year and the energy is so refreshing after what felt like a winter that would never end! Spring is a pretty short-lived season, so get out and make the most of it while you can! 

new york botanical garden daffodil hil.jpeg
nybg orchid show.jpeg
new york botanical garden orchid show.jpeg

Check out the Cherry Blossoms and all the Spring Blooms

Cherry blossoms are blooming everywhere right now! The ones in Central Park are full and fluffy, and the blooms at New York Botanical Garden and Brooklyn Botanical Garden are nearing peak bloom. Some people consider Sakura Matsuri the can’t miss cherry blossom moment of the season, but it’s insanely crowded. I prefer to visit on an off day when I can really take my time wandering the garden and enjoying the view, without the hundreds of people. 

NYBG is also home to stunning fields of daffodils and azaleas that are about halfway to peak bloom right now. Keep your eyes on their bloom tracker to best time your visit. And definitely don’t miss the Orchid Show, that is running until April 28th! 

 

Get Reservations at all the Rooftops and Gardens

Dining al fresco is so necessary but getting coveted tables for you and the squad can be tricky! I usually start booking reservations a few weeks in advance, then making plans with friends as I go. Waiting until the last-minute means missing out on prime outdoor seating during the most popular hours. A lot of places do take walk-ins, but I prefer not to be at the mercy of a wait list that can easily be an hour long! Plan a head or pick less popular times to make sure you can have the perfect Spring dining experience while the season lasts. My favorites are Lauduree, Public Kitchen, Jimmy for drinks and Serra at Eataly

 

Visit New Exhibits at all the City’s Museums

A museum day is one of my favorite things to do, especially on days where the weather is not quite nice enough to be outside. The iconic Costume Institute at the Met Museum opens May 9th and Brooklyn Museum has an incredible Frida Kahlo exhibit on now through May 12th. That one requires timed entry passes and they are selling out fast, so make sure you sign up asap! And on May 3rdthey open Nobody Promised You Tomorrow, a collection of work from 22 LGBTQ artists 50 years after Stonewall. 

 

Update Your Wardobe with Some Spring Shopping

Let your closet get a little taste of fresh air with some affordable fashion finds! Check out all your favorite retailers for Spring sales not to miss. You will need some new sundresses, flirty tops, comfy sandals, and standout accessories to get through the season! 

everything to do in NY this Spring.png

 

The Grown Woman's Guide to Festival Style

Festival Season Style Inspiration

Festival season is here! If you aren’t flying off to live your best life at Coachella, at least you can add some festival inspired style to your Spring wardrobe. Most of the festival trends are pretty out there, and hard to pull off if you aren’t a lanky twenty-something year old. I love the festival season trends and try to interpret them in a way that is easy and appropriate for the normal, everyday life of an average woman. Here are a few ways to get a festival inspired look for a grown woman life!

Festival Season Fashion Trends
Festival Hair and Makeup Ideas

 Try a Fun New Hairstyle

 I’ve been rocking these DIY passion twists and they are all the rage! This look is probably one of the biggest natural hair trends I’ve seen this season, and they give you the perfect sophsticated bohemian guide. Check out my quick tutorial if you want to try to do it yourself, or find a salon that offers the style on Style Seat! They are so cute and can be styled long and loose or in fun, oversized buns and updos. I also love playing with different cornrow styles, and the easiest way to spice up your look is throwing on a cute wig! Whether in a bold color or new curl pattern, you can experiement with your look each season without compromising the health of your natural hair.

Go Bolder with Makeup

 Spring makeup can be very fresh faced, dewy, soft and romantic. When going to a festival inspired look, you definitely need to take it up a notch! Think about more intense shimmer or even glitters for your going out looks, and bold lip color like neon orange or hot pink. I also love layering on highlighter in shades of pink, champagne, or even purple! If your outfit is on the simpler side, a bolder makeup look is a great way to make a statement.

Update Some Go-To Pieces in Your Wardrobe 

Festival style is fun, so just pick a few key pieces that hit some of the trends to get the look! Think fringe, crochet, and bohemian patterns in clothing, block heel booties with Western flair, and plenty of accessories.  These are some of my favorite pieces that subtly hit the festival trend, while still being appropriate for every day adult life!

Let me know what festivals you’ll be heading to this Spring and Summer, and of course what you’ll be wearing!

Festival Fashion Tips

6 Ways to Get Ready for Spring

Birthday Celebration

April is the best month! Not just because it’s my birthday month, although that’s a good part of the reason why! Spring is in the air, the city starts waking up, and flowers start blossoming everywhere you look. Here are a few ways I get ready for my birthday and to kick off the Spring season!

Birthday Celebration Ideas
Birthday Celebration Ideas
6 ways to get ready for Spring

If You Haven’t Already, File Your Taxes!

You know what time it is! 2019 taxes are due April 15th this year, so don’t mess around! I usually do them in March because it takes a while to get all my paperwork from assorted blog campaigns together to file. I also like filing in March because I usually get my refund right around my birthday, so it’s always a nice little treat! Obviously I save the majority of it, but I do leave a little bit for me to plan something fun. Which brings me to my next point . . .

Schedule Your Spring Beauty Treatments

There are a lot of treatments I do on a regular basis to keep things in check! Laser hair removal is a big one, and you need to get those touch ups before summer so you don’t risk discoloration due to sun exposure. I always get my touch-ups in April so I have plenty of time to heal and protect my skin before sundress/bikini season kicks off.

I’m not big on facials, but I do indulge them occasionally. Chemical peels are my preferred choice, and I always get them from a dermatologist, NOT a day spa. Not knocking spas as they can be an amazing experience, but when it comes to strong chemicals being applied to my face with the goal of actually burning off the top layer of skin, I want that administered by a licensed medical professional! My go to dermatologist in the city is Dr. Carlos Charles at Derma di Colore, who has been keeping my skin glowing for years. I also love Dr. Sinha at Pearlman Aesthetic Surgery!

I definitely prefer massages to facials, so I make it a point to get one every year the week of my birthday. I actually get them every 3 or 4 months, but usually they are pretty intense massages, aimed at working out tension and helping me recover from my strength building workouts. The birthday massage is designed to be a relaxing one, that just lets me get pampered!

Plan a Party or Social Event

I usually have multiple events the week of my birthday because, well why not! I’m so lucky to have a lot of friends and any excuse to get them all together and eat cake and pop champagne is much appreciated. I made my reservations for brunch and dinner a few weeks ago, so just putting the finishing touches on some small details. If you don’t like planning birthdays or have a group of friends that would love to plan it for you, definitely take advantage! I just tend to take matters into my own hands when it comes to the birthday, and my friends usually love what I come up with so the trend just stuck. This year will be way more low-key than last year’s pajama party, since I’m super busy, but I’m so excited! The next thing to do is take advantage of my Rent the Runway birthday rental and pick out an amazing look! Did you know you get a free birthday rental with an RTR Pro membership? Check out their site for more details!

Try a New Hair Style

New season, new look right? I start playing with my hair more for Spring and Summer, trying out lighter colors, playing with more fun wigs, or trying trendy braided styles. The energy of the season just lends itself to experimenting with a new look! I’m going to be testing out the new passion twists that are all the rage, so stay tuned to my Instagram to see how this look turns out!

Clean out Your Closet for Spring

It’s time to transition your wardrobe from winter to Spring, and before you can take advantage of all the Spring sales, you’ve got to make room in your closet for the new additions! I always go through my closet and audit everything that needs to go and decide whether to sell it on Poshmark or one of the resale stores like Crossroads or donate it to Goodwill. I also usually pull out a few pieces that I want to keep but need some extra love, like fixing minor tears, treating stains, getting shoes polished, etc. Once you know what you are keeping for the new season, you can carefully shop around to round out your looks and options!

Plan a Summer Trip

Give yourself something to look forward to! Summer is a great time to travel, and if you want to find a deal now is the time to start looking. Coordinate with your friends or significant other on a dream destination or affordable little weekends. If you aren’t sure where to go, sign up for fare sale alerts and emails on most of the big booking sites. They will let you know about flash sales and discounted travel that will help give you ideas to start planning!

Let me know how you get ready for Spring and what you are most excited about this season!

fashion and beauty tips for Spring

3 Spring Trends! Get the Looks Under $100

Spring in NYC

Spring is officially here, even though it doesn’t exactly feel like it in NY! I’m sure things will pick up in the next few weeks, but I’m not waiting for the warm weather to get my wardrobe ready. You guys know I’m not a big shopper, and since I didn’t get almost anything new last Spring, my closet is looking a little dusty. Here are a few trends, I’m super excited about for Spring, and don’t worry – none of them include florals! 

Striped Dress Trend for Spring

The Stripe Trend for Spring

Stripes are the new floral this season. Wear bold ones, or neutral like this midi dress from Shop Red Dress. They are just as cute whether they are vertical or horizontal, so work them into your looks with dresses, shirts, and even bottoms or accessories

Striped Ruffle Mini Dress

 

Girly Dresses for Spring

Feminine Detailed Dresses for Spring

Girly is back again, and I’m here for it! Think sweet ruffles, bow detailing, and soft, feminine colors for Spring. Pair a dress that is shorter or has a sexier fit with sneakers or penny loafers to lend a more casual vibe. 

hair accessories spring trend

 

Hair Accessories Spring Trend

I’ve noticed the hair accessories trend sweeping the blogs and runways so I’m testing it out! I usually keep my hair styles pretty simple, but this season is a fun time to test out a new look. Think bold hair clips, cute headscarves, and piled up bobby pins. 

 

Denim Dress Trend

New Denim Trend for Spring 

Denim is a wardrobe staple, but this season I’ve been playing with more interesting ways to wear it. I fashioned this dress from an oversized trucker jacket and love it! It’s great for days when it’s just a little too chilly and a jacket is necessary. You can get the look with any oversized, boyfriend cut jacket, and just add your favorite belt. 

3 spring trends under $100



Let me know what trends you are most excited about and shop the story below! 

Spring Trend Style Guide

 

 

Oldies But Goodies - 5 Pieces I Wear on Repeat That Still Spark Joy

pink tulle skirt

As a fashion blogger, you are expected to have a revolving wardrobe of brand new on trend pieces to show off every season. If you’ve been following me for awhile, you may have noticed that I don’t post about shopping too often - simply because I hate it! Seriously, I am not a fan of shopping. It takes a lot to get me excited about shopping for new items, and these days I’ve been more focused on spending on travel and exercise, less on clothes. With the exception of a few Savage x Fenty orders, I haven’t almost anything new for Spring yet!

I’ve been doing some KonMari style home reorganization and that got me thinking of some of my favorite pieces that I wear on repeat. Here are some pics of me rocking some old gems that still spark joy! Hopefully this post encourages you to shop your closet and play with fun new ways to rock your favorite oldies but goodies.

Red Knit Skirt

This Alexander Wang knit skirt is so me! It fits perfectly, is sporty and sexy and looks just as great with heels as it does with sneakers. It’s also special to me because it’s the first time I walked into Barney’s and bought something for myself full price. No looking for dupes or scouring the web for discount codes. I don’t splurge on material goods often, but it was kind of a pat on my back for how hard I had been hustling.

Mums Handmade Knit Sweater

This Mum’s Handmade sweater had been on my list for ages! I got one of their amazing pink cardigans over a year ago, and got this baby when they had a summer sale. The knits are pricey and knockoffs are plentiful, but once you see it you will be amazed. It’s the perfect piece that is both trendy and classic, and will last for years with proper care.

Sergio Rossi Furry Shoes

Have you ever seen shoes like this??? These are from my days at Sergio Rossi when we got a glorious product allowance. I definitely don’t wear them a lot because they are sooo extra but they are the most unique thing I own and will be in my closet forever.

Pink Tulle Skirt and Black Blazer

And finally my pink tulle and chiffon skirt and black tuxedo jacket. I picked up the skirt on the High Street in London back in like 2010! And it still looks as good as it did the day I fell in love with it. The jacket is from the H&M/Isabel Marant collab from 2013. It’s so cool and classic and a piece that is still in heavy rotation.

Take a look at your closet and think about the pieces that mean the most to you and new ways to style them! Not only is it friendly to the environment and your wallet, it’s pretty damn fun!

Shopping Your Closet to Spark Joy

Why I Stopped Working with Photographers

What’s the main tool every blogger needs - photos obviously! In order to create content and maintain your schedule you need a reliable way to get photos for your blog and social media posts. I’ve been blogging for about 3 years now and over the past year I have seriously reduced my reliance on professional photographers to generate content. In this post I outline all the reasons why my content strategy shifted, the pros and cons of working with a professional photographer, and how I maintain my content. Keep scrolling, and check out the photos chosen for this post. They are some of my favorites that I created and edited on my own!

Lifestyle Photograhy Tips.JPG
Portrait Photography Tips
Top of the Rock NYC.JPG

I decided to reduce how much I work with professional photographers for several reasons, but it really all boiled down to one thing - wanting to have more control over my content. I looked at the influencers I admire most, like Asiyami Gold, Mossonyi, Tezza, and Tina from Of Leather and Lace. One thing they all have in common is they are all content creators. Even when they are not taking the photo, they have full creative control over every element of the photo and the final editing process. If you can’t create content without having a pro photographer at your disposal, your creative will always be limited.

Plus the only way to truly maintain a consistent aesthetic is to be in control of all of your visuals. For example, below is a side by side of my feed now, vs in a month when I created and edited all my own images, without using any professional photographers.

Instagram Feed Design.JPG

The left is all original work, shot mostly with friends or other blogger girls and edited by me for consistency. And on the right is my most recent look. As you can see, things got a little disjointed! I worked with a few different street style photographers for pictures in between shows, then peppered in some original work for a sponsored project, and then pics from my trip to LA. I’m hoping to get my look back on track in the next few weeks, so will be going back to more of my own work.

The only way to really keep a consistent look and work with a pro is if you always use the same one. Plenty of influencers have a photographer on retainer, which can get expensive! If it’s not in the budget and an Insta-Hubby isn’t an option, take it into your own hands by working with friends or other bloggers in the same situation.

Lighting Tips for New Photographers.JPG

Creating your own content becomes especially important when you begin doing more brand work. Negotiating sponsored posts with brands can mean they also want rights to use the photos, which technically the photographer would have the copyright to. If you want to truly own your photos and be able to license them to brand partners, you need to either have your photographer sign off on that, or you need to own that content!

I anticipate this year I will create about 65% of my content on my own - enlisting a pro really only on travel when my friends pics may not cut it, or when the wardrobe/location calls for one. And even then I plan on being super vigilant about color, lighting, editing, etc to make sure the my visuals stay consistent no matter who is taking the final shot.

If you are a blogger let me know how you handle getting pictures, and if you plan on taking more content creation into your own hands. And for those who want to take the DIY approach, check out my post on mastering the self-portrait!

content creation tips for bloggers
Working with Blogger Photographers

How to Beat the Instagram Algorithm in 2019!

Pink Tulle Dress

Ever since Instagram implemented the algorithm, there have been countless posts about how to beat it. From quick and easy hacks to complicated, time consuming strategies, everyone is trying to find a way to beat Instagram at its own game. As an influencer, part of your success depends on your reach and the engagement you get on your posts so performance is critical. I’m far from an Instagram expert, but I have learned a few things on my journey as a microinfluencer, so I’m sharing some of my tips for how I’ve managed to maintain my account, get decent engagement, and keep the algorithm from making me crazy!

Pink Tulle Dress
NYC Photo Shoot Locations
Fashion Photo Shoot Styling

Focus on Instagram Engagement

Engagement is everything! You can’t control who sees your posts anymore, and you definitely can’t control who likes or comments on them. Since this post focuses only on things you can control, when I speak of engagement I mean how you are active and engaging on the platform. You can’t just post once a day, disappear, then expect your account to get traction. I spend about an hour a day on Instagram, engaging with new accounts and people that follow me. Yes, I go through my followers list and like, comment, watch and Insta-story or something to let my followers know I pay attention to them! If you are engaging with their accounts they are also more likely to see your posts in their feed and engage on yours!

Create Compelling, High Quality Content

There are so many influencers and brands posting on Instagram these days it’s impossible to stand out if your content isn’t up to par. Focus on creating content that is in line with your aesthetic, is eye-catching enough to make someone pause on your pic not just scroll past, and has an interesting caption. I admit I am not the best at captioning! I typically schedule my images so the visual flow makes sense, but I don’t caption in advance so I usually end up posting on the fly. I’m challenging myself to work on better captions because I firmly believe they help with boosting engagement and beating the Instagram algorithm.

Collaborate with Other Bloggers in Your Niche

Collaborating with other influencers isn’t just for fun! It can help organically expose you to a new audience and help you create new types of content that engage and excite your followers! I had a blast shooting with some of the Exclusively Social babes around NYFW and I hope to do more partnerships with other bloggers to have fun and help each other grow!

Have Fun and Remember Why You Started

I started my influencer journey to have a creative outlet when my corporate job felt stifling. It became my personal passion project, a place for me to challenge my creativity, make new connections, and post about things that excited and inspired me. So whether I’m posting from far-flung destination or frolicking in a tulle dress in a Brooklyn studio that rivals a Victorian mansion, this is my place to create what I want. Think about what you want, and how you can find other people that want to see what you create!

Instagram can always change their algorithm, and probably has by the time you read this post! By remembering the things that motivate you, inspire you, and challenge you as an influencer will make the journey all worthwhile.

Tips to Beat the Algorithm

Let me know how you are surviving Instagram and your life as an influencer!

A Sunny Staycation at Hollywood Hotel

Hollywood Hotel Review

This post is sponsored by Hollywood Hotel. All opinions are my own

Sometimes you need a winter escape. NYC has been freezing so I planned another little getaway to LA to get in some fun in the sun! I love the Hollywood area and Hollywood Hotel was gracious enough to partner with me on this post.

The 130-room Hollywood Hotel is one of the most reasonably priced hotels in the city and offers incredible value in a central location. Situated in Hollywood, it’s minutes away from boutique shopping, world-class dining and cutting edge culture, and the closest hotel to The Hollywood Sign, Griffith Park, LA Zoo, Greek theater and Mount Hollywood hiking trails.

The hotel has an on-site fitness center so you can squeeze in a workout when traveling and a beautiful, open-air fountain courtyard, and outdoor pool. Plus they offer a complimentary hot breakfast buffet served daily. A unique feature of the hotel is Hollywood Hotel’s own Comedy Club, which brings all-star comedians to the property on a weekly basis.

Hollywood Hotel Los Angeles
Hollywood Hotel Balcony
Hollywood Hotel Pool
Hollywood Hotel LA Review
Hollywood Hotel Bar

The weather during my visit was pretty wet and chilly so didn’t encourage much exploring, so luckily the hotel was comfy enough for staying in. Make sure you stop by the bar, Route66 for happy hour and check out the vodka tasting!

Let me know if you end up here in LA and how you liked it! And thank you again to Hollywood Hotel for partnering with me on this post.

Hollywood Hotel LA Review

NYFW Outfit Guide - 5 Looks to Slay The Street Style Game

The best part of fashion week is obviously the fashion! Not just taking it in as new looks make their way down the runway and seasonal trends are born. I love seeing the streets of NY turn into a runway, with fashionistas turning up in their most eye-catching looks, and of course getting to show off your most fun looks as well! I had a blast putting together looks for this week, collaborating with Another Man’s Treasure vintage store and Nineteenth Amendement. Check out some of my favorite looks from the week! Since some of my items are vintage and or not widely available, I included links to similar pieces so you can get the look!

NYFW Lookbook: Outfit 1

Street Style New York Fashion Week
Fashion Week Street Style Inspiration

Emerald green is a can’t miss color and since your coat is the first thing anyone sees this time of year, I needed to make it a good one. I gave the playful wrap coat some shape by adding a chunky belt in contrasting gold and burgundy, and added these youthful black tights with a subtle cheetah print. You can’t see the full outfit, but I’m wearing a leather mini skirt and black cashmere sweater – simple, easy, but with just a bit of edge. 

NYFW Lookbook: Outfit 2

New York Fashion Week Street Style
New York Fashion Week Outfit Ideas

For this look, I was channeling a 70’s diva, complete with massive curls, a fluffy sweater, cream leather lace-up pants and a full length suede coat with huge fur collar. Everything is so extra, but because it’s in a monochromatic color palette, it works! Plus I’m super happy to be fitting into these pants again!  They are really old Nasty Gal, but I linked another amazing pair below!

NYFW Lookbook: Outfit 3

Fashion Week Style Guide
New York Fashion Week Trends

I was feeling romantic and edgy for this look. This dress is from Nineteenth Amendment Designer Leetal Platt. It’s got some edgy, sexy, metallic strappy details but a floaty, soft chiffon skirt. The contrast was my favorite thing about it. I played up the pattern on the skirt by topping it with a leopard print car coat. It took the look up just enough to be street style worthy! 

NYFW Lookbook: Outfit 4

nyfw_feb19_02.jpg

Tiger print is starting to trend, so when I saw this vintage fur jacket at AMT I had to grab it. It’s a classic fit but the print makes it fresh and eye-catching. I intended to keep the look simple, with just a forest green knit dress and nude booties but got this really fun furry swag bag after the Son Jung Wan show so walked out with it! I never thought I would love a fur bag so much! I think this one was specially made for show.

NYFW Lookbook: Outfit 5

Pink Furry Coat NYFW.jpeg
Pink Statement Coat Fashion Week.jpeg

I ended the week with a giant pink bang in this oversized Bianca Zidik coat from Nineteenth Amendment. It’s bright pink, metallic, and a shaggy fur that is impossible to miss! I loved the feeling of strolling down the street in this baby and having heads literally turn! Plus it got lots of attention from paparazzi, so win win!

 

Let me know which look is your fave and what runway trends you are most excited about! And follow me on Instagram to catch up on all my fashion week fun in real time! 

NYFW Street Style Tips

Fashion Week Essentials – What’s In My Bag and How I Power Through

Street Style Fashion Week

Fashion week is here again! I’ve been so lucky to be a part of it for several years, as an industry professional and as a blogger! It really is an adrenaline rush of run, energy, excitement, and inspiration! Although it’s not without drawbacks – being exhausted, feeling the constant sense of FOMO if you have multiple shows and events at the same time and physically can’t make them all, plus trying to look glam when you just feel like a haggard mess. Not to mention in February the weather tends to suck, dashing all of your #streetstyle hopes and dreams. If it is one of your first seasons attending Fashion Week, congratulations! You are in for a treat. Here are the essentials I keep with me all week, and how I sneak in moments of self-care to keep myself sane.

NYFW Street Style
Fashion Week Outfit Inspiration
Fashion Week Outfit Ideas

What’s in My Bag for Fashion Week

On a daily basis I can seriously look like a bag lady, but when it’s time for shows I try to whittle it down so it can all fit into a chic clutch. I always have my unlimited Metrocard because I’m a New Yorker, a portable charger because a dead phone is absolutely not an option, and beauty essentials like lipstick, a mini perfume for touch-ups, blotting papers, and false eyelash glue. I also keep my 2 favorite credit cards and my Soho House membership card with me since it’s a great place to relax between shows. And healthy snacks like power bars, trail mix, or jerky to get you through. 

Because I am a gym rat and am fully committed to my fitness journey as you may have seen on my Instagram stories, I may also carry a second tote with gym gear in it! Depending on your schedule and how many shows you go to, you may have a 2 or 3 hour gap between events. That’s not enough time to run back home but just enough time to be annoyed at having nothing to do. If I know I have a day like that I will head into the city with my gym bag and drop it off at a New York Sports Club location near the shows. If I have downtime in the afternoon I can squeeze in a workout and freshen up before the next event, instead of wandering aimlessly. And when I’m done for the day and heading home I make a pit stop back at the gym to grab the back I left in the lockers, so I don’t have to lug it around all day.. If you are not in #beastmode like me, a better alternative is to just find a bar and day drink. 

 

How I Stay Productive During Fashion Week

As I mentioned before, fitness is one way I take care of myself, so getting it in is a priority. I work out 4-5x a week so at least one or 2 of those sessions need to be squeezed in around fashion week. You also always have to be on top of editing and posting content, last minute RSVPs that may roll in, and sponsored deals that may have deadlines or be in the works. I know I have blog posts due write after NYFW and I’m not about pulling all nighters! In between shows or while I’m waiting for them to start, or even when I’m in the subway or in a Lyft, I’m managing email or editing or drafting content on my phone. I use Evernote to draft blog copy, Snapseed, A Color Story, and Facetune for photo editing, and Unfold to curate my stories. Even if you only have 15 minutes of downtime between shows, you can crank through something on your to do list

 

Making Time for Friends During NYFW

The best part of fashion week is hanging with your glamourous friends! Me and the blogger babes typically share our schedules so we can plan to meet up. Having someone you know to sit with at a show is the best and taking fun group shots outside the shows is the icing on the cake. If you don’t have a lot of blogger or industry friends, a network like Exclusively Social is an amazing resource to find your #GirlGang! They have fun events and photo shoots, plus a world of resources on being an influencer. It’s members only so try to get on the list! 

Let me know how your week goes! And stay tuned to my Instagram to catch all the fun!

Surviving Fashion Week
Fashion Week Guide

Get Ready with Me: Glam Valentine's Day Looks with Upbra!

Glam Night in for Valentine's Day

Valentine’s Day is just 2 weeks away! Hope you guys have your outfits ready to go. Today I’m giving you a little preview into how I get ready for a romantic night out, in collaboration with Upbra!

Upbra is my go to bra when I need to take my look up a notch! This bad boy gives you cleavage that is not for the faint of heart. It’s made in America and features  Upbra ActiveLift® technology and cleavage control straps that move your breasts up and center for maximum cleavage.  Pull the loops all the way out for the most high impact loop. Don’t worry about it getting uncomfortable, this bra is seriously surprisingly comfy!

If you want to keep some attention on your face, balance out the major babe look with glamourous makeup and hair! For this look I went with big voluminous curls and soft romantic makeup. Think a shimmery eyes with a touch of smoke, berry lips, and plenty of highlighter. And definitely don’t forget the lashes! 

I’m planning to wear a strapless dress, so going with the Upbra Strapless Bra in red. It’s just as supportive as the T-Shirt version I also have. It also features super cute heart shaped mini grips to keep your cleavage in place all night long.

Getting Ready with Upbra
Glam Beauty Look
Upbra Product Review
Upbra Product Detail Review

If you are still struggling to figure out what to wear, check out my tips in this post! Whatever you decide, be sure to make the first layer of your look the Upbra! Also, be sure check out their swim collection if you are in the market for a new bikini for summer

Valentines Day Glam Night In