Friday, July 29

Current State of the Union 7/29/16

Currently / life:
+ If you're reading this, that means I got my ish together and completed this post before heading back to CA for a big weekend: Tarif's show [American Idiot] is Friday night, Marisol's NorCal shower is Saturday, and Sunday is the San Francisco marathon! Wish me luck and stay tuned.
+ Trying to think of what else to say about life lately. My new position at work has kept me bizzay, so otherwise, evenings/weekends have been super chill. I've also been running a LOT which is not conducive to late nights/going out. Probably not a bad change of pace for me, honestly!
+ On the blog this past month: I wore trouser jeans (and need a new pair!) shared my Poshmark best practices, debuted the chambray jumpsuit of my dreams, and kicked around in my donut Vans.

Currently / pop culture: I've been running a lot and listening to a lot of music!
+ Last Year Was Complicated - Nick Jonas | I'm just so proud of Nick for emerging as a stellar solo artist. Apart from loving the title of this album, it is loaded with catchy, sexy pop songs. Not sure why someone would break up with NickJo, but I thank them for their contribution. Listen to: Touch
+ Oh Wonder - Oh Wonder | I also listen to Spotify all day at work, so I'm always searching for chill productive jams. Oh Wonder is perfect for fans of Sylvan Esso or other chill indie. Listen to: Lose It
+ The Human Condition - Jon Bellion | Thanks Carina, for this rec! Jon Bellion has the coolest techno pop sound, perfect for working out, or just generally getting hyped :) Listen to: All Time Low
+ A couple more tracks that have been on repeat this month: Into You - Ariana Grande, Mr. Rodriguez - Rayland BaxterHymn For The Weekend (Seeb Remix) - Coldplay, and Once in a While - Timeflies.

+ Since we last talked about TV, I finished Bloodline Season One, and just really want to know if Season Two is worth watching? The first season has a plot line that hooks you, for sure, but I'm wary about dragging it across two seasons.
+ Anyone out there watch Stranger Things? If you're not into sci-fi (ME) I would still totally recommend it. I loved the child actors/characters, and the 80's setting really added something special.

*I'd love to connect with you on Spotify! Be warned, I listened to a lot of 80's pop music.*
Currently / beauty:
+ Trust Fund Beauty nail polish in No Filter | I’ll never have enough neutral shades of nail polish, and this is THE coolest lavender-gray. The above photo was taken over a week after I did my nails! This is a brand I hadn’t heard of that I got in my ipsy. Bonus that their polishes have the best names.
+ Marc Anthony smoothing cream | Try as I might to never “wash-and-go” with my hair (I’m more of a “wash-and-sleep-on-and-wait-two-days-and-go) sometimes during the Summer it’s unavoidable. I love using this smoothing crème in my hair because it softens the texture and combats frizz with no crunchy residue.
+ Benefit They're Real! mascara | I love Benefit products & was excited to finally try this raved about mascara. I generally don’t like spindly brushes, but this mascara grabs even the tiniest lashes & really seems to double them!
+ Mellow Cosmetics eyeshadow in Coco | This eyeshadow is a shade I could wear just about every day (and I have been!) The shimmery brown has just enough oomph for daytime and goes on super smooth.

**by this point if you know ONE thing about me, it’s that ipsy & Birchbox are the habits I just can’t kick. Sign up for ipsy/Birchbox for $10 a month!**

Currently / shopping:
+ Can I get a hi-five or something because the ONLY shopping I did this month was: bought a J.Crew knit dress/swimsuit cover-up that I had seen in stores and wanted via Poshmark, using credits!
+ I also used ThredUp credits I received in exchange for writing a review and got so much good stuff (five items!) Can’t wait to share that with you guys.

+ Quick shout-out to WelcomeHome, my new favorite gift boutique right in my neighborhood of East Nashville. Locally made items, clever cards, & sales clerks that wrap your gifts in pretty paper & discuss Pokemon Go with you.

Currently / Nashville: 
+ There are three recently opened “boutique bars” (if you will) that you have to check out before the Summer is up: Bar Luca in East, Old Glory in Edgehill, and Bastion in Wedgewood-Houston. I’ll rank them in this order: Old Glory, Bastion, Bar Luca, but let me know what you think. Nashville is super in their prime of turning old-timey-Pajama-Game-factory-buildings into the hottest bars of the moment.
+ On the polar opposite- do you guys like Ethiopian food? Gojo is one of my favorite spots in town. I’ve never been to an Ethiopian restaurant that isn’t a hole-in-the-wall, (I think that’s their shtick) & this one does not disappoint. Pro-tip: split an sampler platter & I promise you this is enough food. The anjera adds like, another dimension.

That's all I've got for now! If you have pop culture, beauty, shopping, Nashville (or another city) recs, I would love to hear them! Share below.

And check out my other Current States of the Union right here.

Wednesday, July 27

Orange You Glad This Isn't a Donut Pun?

Vans Late Night in donut
Summer outfit with knit dress and Vans
| sunnies: Target | dress: ASOS | watch: c/o JORD | purse: Kate Spade (similar with hand-held strap)| shoes: Vans

I've written about my obsession with donuts and how it came to be probably too many times on the blog, and my collection of donut apparel and accessories just continues to grow. 

A couple months ago, my friend sent me a link to these, and mere minutes later, (after consulting with my sister who said "such a small price to pay for happiness!") I had ordered them. Kinda impulsive, maybe not the most age-appropriate/professional choice of shoe, but do they make me happy? Hell yeah. They're worth it for the squeals I receive when wearing them alone. And I totally wear these to work, btw. 

I've been wearing Vans since elementary school, and they really hit the nail on the head with their "Late Night" collection: you can get them in "pizza", "taco", and "cupcake", whatever your fancy! 

These photos were actually taken a few months ago when my friend Jacqui came to town. We had a really lovely afternoon in Franklin, where they just happened to have a street fair going on! Franklin is basically a blogger paradise, with historical building backdrops galore. Thanks for snapping these for me, Jacqui! 

Ok, tell me about your last shoe impulse purchase! Am I the only one who still can't resist a kitschy print?? 

Wednesday, July 20

jumpsuit dreams do come true

| earrings: gift from Galina | backpack: Target | jumpsuit: Old Navy (sold out! similar at J.Crew) | clogs: Target | cuff: made by a friend! | watch: c/o JORD | lip: Tarte LipSurgence stain in Wonder via ipsy |

photos taken by Hillary and edited with VSCOCam

Tale as old as time- I added this jumpsuit to my cart a few months ago to qualify for free shipping, figuring I would try it on, have a laugh, and send it back (initially reviewed here.) Fun silhouettes like this never work out for me, between my shape and very short legs. But, in a magical Old Navy twist of fate- this jumpsuit FITS and it's breezy and stylish and I never want to take it off. If you haven't delved into Old Navy's latest chambray offerings- you must. They are killing it. I'm actually wearing this dress today, and this ruffle one is also dreamy. 

I saw these clogs on a fellow blogger months ago and had to get my hands on a pair, immediately. I'm kinda becoming a clog hoarder at this point? I just can't pass them up. These are kinda a hybrid between heel and clogs (hlogs? cheels? work on that) and actually really comfortable. Since they're not real clogs, the heel is not made of wood and it is SO light. 

Oh lastly- I can't be the only one who feels like pack mule coming to and from work every day. Nearly every day as I walk from my car to my door, with a purse, gym bag, work bag, lunch bag, keys, phone, cardigan, etc. etc. hanging off of me I have the same thought "how is it even possible that I'm carrying all this stuff right now?" Solution- a baaaackpack! I change my "work bag" all the time, but carrying a backpack is such a beautiful hands free solution. And fun fact about this bag- I debuted it in one of my first blog posts ever (cringe!)

I'm dying to know your secrets for commuting to work- what bag solutions have you found?

This jumpsuit + my new clogs + vintage florals have me feeling some 70's type of way and I love it! 

Hope you guys are having a great week. Thanks for reading! 

Friday, July 15

7 Poshmark Tips & Tricks

So I'm kinda obsessed with Poshmark these days. I'm sure you've heard of it- the app that lets you sell items right out of your closet, and shop others' closets at the same time!

I was a late adopter, and if you're like me, you might be thinking "surely I don't have things in my closet that people would be interested in!" But trust me, you really do!

I can summarize why I love it so much in two points:

1) It allows me to make a little money on things I would have otherwise given away for free. Which is closely linked to

2) It has helped me clean out my closet. Previously I had held on to items that I did not wear (because of fit or otherwise) simply because at one point, someone spent a considerable amount on them. Knowing I can make a little back completely takes that "guilt" away. Even gifted items that fit me at one time are fair game, because isn't it better to turn them into something new I could actually benefit from?

I also love how user-friendly it is. You can literally snap & upload photos with your phone, and Poshmark takes out the messy part about postage by sending you a pre-paid label. USPS picks up at my office so it is literally SO easy for me to do.

I've had some blog friends & real friends that have asked me about using the app, so I thought I'd compile my quick advice in one place, for anyone starting out (or otherwise!)

1. Give them the 411 | Shout-out to Jess for this. Literally, the more info you can provide about your item, the better! Details about material, fit, and wear are essential. I always like to say WHY I'm selling an item- just to show I'm not trying to swindle anyone (90% of the time something doesn't fit me, and the other 10% is that it's become neglected.) Suggestions on how to wear are also great!

2. Pics or it won't happen. | Bloggers have a leg-up on this one- chances are you have some gorgeous photos of you wearing the item already! People generally love to see photos of you wearing something- show 'em how to style it! I've also experimented with "laying out an outfit". Like with any photography, the biggest thing to keep in mind is LIGHTING- think about it, if you saw an item listed on gross carpet with murky lighting, you would pass too.
*Pro tip*: if there's a great item in your closet that sits for too long- try changing up your cover image!

3. Start by listing your items high- | But don't fib on your "original price" to make your deal seem better. Try to make this as accurate as possible- I will literally Google an item and find something similar if I can't remember how much I paid for something. I would advise initially pricing your items higher than you actually intend on selling them for, and then slash those prices baby.
*Pro tip*: anytime someone "likes" one of your items- they are automatically notified when you lower the price. I have made several sales this way!

4. But make peace with selling them low. | Be prepared to sell items for pretty cheap. I would say the average price my items go for is about $13 (I'm selling mostly in the Urban Outfitters/Old Navy range.) If you have high end or designer stuff to sell, I would actually recommend taking them to a consignment shop or using another service, I doubt you'll get what you're hoping for on Posh.

5. Don't be afraid of offers- but don't be afraid to counter-offer. | Most sellers are looking to get rid of stuff- and will happily take your reasonable offer. So there's a tip for shopping! Likewise, 90% of the time, I accept the offers people make me. However, don't be afraid to counter-offer or meet in the middle on an item you think is worth a little more. Great items can totally sit for a while before they sell, it happens!

6. Be a party animal! | Shout-out to Danielle for this one! Probably my most valuable piece of advice. "Posh Parties" last an hour or so and are literally just a time to share items in a category. These are a fantastic way to give your items exposure and get those likes! I try to share a couple items at every party- it takes just a few seconds.
*Pro tip*: Go into your settings and turn ON your notifications for parties- you'll get a pop up on your phone!

7. Tie it with a bow. | This can make such a difference in a sale. I always take a minute to write a quick thank you note (I am genuinely thankful- people are helping me!) and tell them I'd appreciate a good review if they had a good experience with my shop and love their item. Reviews on your closet can make a huge difference. Then I wrap my item in pretty paper and make sure it's securely packaged. This doesn't take long, but makes all the difference.

And there you have it! So far I've made a few hundred dollars using the app, and I only share that to say; while I'm not an expert, I've had some success, even while selling items really steeply discounted.

By the way- this post was not sponsored by Poshmark in any way. I've just really enjoyed using it, and thought this might encourage you to do the same!

Sign up with my referral code: PWGSG and we both get $10 to spend!

Oh, and one more shameless plug to shop my closet, if you're interested!

If you've had experience using Poshmark and I'm missing out on some stellar advice- I'd love to hear it!

Tuesday, July 12

The *Right* Trousers

| necklace: Old Navy (mega old!) | tee: Gap | trousers: Gap Factory (mine are old, latest Gap / really similar) | clogs: Old Navy | lip: Nectarine Dream |

Well hey!

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a million times- what a time to be alive, where all cuts of jeans are in style!

Remember in middle school when they had to be flared? I vividly remember a conversation I had with my then best friends about what type of jeans our moms wore- my cool friend’s cool mom was wearing flared jeans too, and our un-cool moms were wearing “tapered” (see: skinny) jeans. Then, ironically, for the longest time, we all had to wear skinny jeans!

But in 2016, you can marry who you want, you can basically live where you want (earth, space- all cool) and you can wear any type of jeans you please: high-waisted, boyfriend, girlfriend, flared, trouser, skinny, cropped, in any color of the rainbow- ALL GOOD. I think you can even get away with acid wash- so long as the fit is right.

I’m not trying to be :sassy emoji: but I actually bought these jeans a few years ago, to try and break into the trend of trousers that I loved on other bloggers. I actually bought them on the way back from Spring Break with a group of folks THAT is how dedicated I am to fashun. And to this blog.

This outfit is 100% inspired by this pin (and thereforth a pin for the win! Check out that Pinterest Board, and check out other documented pins for the win) which was inspired by me trying to find a way to style these jeans. Basics. Duh. Easy.

In retrospect, looking at these photos, I wish my trousers were a few inches longer in each direction. I had my mom hem them when I bought them (thanks Mom!) to be the perfect length with heels, but now I think they’d be about the perfect length with flats. They also hit at probably the most unflattering place- right at my hip, which seems like arrows to a tucked in t-shirt poking out AND my lunch! Mid-rise, friends. Mid-rise is so friendly.

What's your take on styling trousers? Send me a link to an outfit with trouser jeans! 

Thursday, June 30

Current State of the Union: 6.30.16

Currently / life:
+ In June I celebrated probably my most terrifying birthday yet- 25! I survived :) another big hug to everyone who made me feel so loved! I also decided on a mantra of sorts for the year of 25. And you know- it's been a good start to a new age.
+ I am basically a MONTH away from my race [the SF marathon on July 31st] eek! I took training up a notch this month, out of necessity more than anything, and hit 15 miles last Saturday (for the first time in six years I might add.) Training in the humidity for a non-morning person has been a challenge, and I'm super ready to exercise just for fun again. I've also adopted the mantra "sometimes it takes six miles to warm up" which might be mental, and I'm fine with that.
+ I officially booked my flight to Europe this week, which means it's officially happening- and I'm officially broke. The plan is to meet Carina in London (on Sept. 30th) and head over to Germany for Oktoberfest (!) and then to Paris. I am really super excited. And now I'm on a spending freeze (so fun.)
+ And a quick look back at what I wore this month: I pattern-mixed, debuted my Marimekko + Target top, wore all black (and brought back the half-bun), styled tux pants for Summer, and wore a dress + trainers AGAIN.

Currently / pop culture:
+ Revival- Selena Gomez | I have to start out with this because I got to see the Revival tour last week, and I'm an even bigger Selenator now! She has blossomed into such a sexy pop star and this album is pure fire- I mean, how many singles has she had, just from this album?! Plus, if Selena Gomez can get over Justin Bieber...
+ Coloring Book- Chance The Rapper | props to my work friend Logan for keeping me relevant with this (and sending over a copy!) This album has absolutely blown up and rightly so. My favorite track is No Problem (the cameo by Weezy!)
+ 7/27- Fifth Harmony | I'll admit, I rolled my eyes and was uninterested when Fifth Harmony first emerged. But this album is the JAM. I can listen to the first six tracks through when on a long run (the true test.) You've heard Work From Home on the radio, but my current favorite tracks are That's My Girl (my feminist anthem) and This Is The Life. Nice work, ladies!
+ And a couple quick jams for when you need a pick-me-up | All Time Low- Jon Bellion (just try and get this one out of your head), Hell No- Ingrid Michaelson (new-ish single!), Good As Hell- Lizzo (hello girl anthem! She is so fun!)
+ I had just barely started Bloodline (Netflix original) by my last Current States post, and it took a minute to ramp up, but as of this week- WOAH. I watched one episode that revealed more than the entire series had so far! The show follows a family with a load of issues, running an inn in the picturesque Florida Keys. Not sure who to trust (I'm also dying to go to the Keys, stat.)

*if playlists like Beyoncé- vindictive, Chattanooga- the Big Apple, & time to get freaky intrigue you- follow me on Spotify!
Currently / beauty:
+ Urban Decay Naked 3 palette | Funny story about this guy- my brother Coren got it for me for Christmas a few years ago, and I just received it via Marisol at her bachelorette. And it was worth every bit of the wait! I've used it almost every day since and I get the hype, finally. #3 is more rose-gold centered, which I am absolutely fine with.
Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray | Another Birchbox win! I've actually recieved this product twice and I'm not sure why I haven't purchased it? I borrowed this while getting ready with a friend the other night and remembered how much I love it. It's advertised as "a great alternative to dry to shampoo", and it really is- the perfect way to volumize and hold your hair after styling, AND it smells great!
Becca Highlighter in Champagne Pop | "work friend Kelley" (now just life friend, btw) gifted me this for my birthday and it really IS the most lovely, shimmery pigmented highlighter. Thanks Kelley!
+ Cailyn Matte Tint | Because I can't have a beauty post without a lip color! A co-worker handed this to me ages ago because it was "not her color", and for some reason, it's become my go-to lately! The punchy pink shade is pretty perfect, and I have to admit I feel pretty cool in a matte lip. I also have the Cailyn Art Touch Lip Gloss in Basic Instinct, which is a great gloss!
Benefit Gimme Brow | And sometimes Birchbox sends you exactly what you've been dying to try! I love that the tinted spoolie really tames and shades brows at the same time, however; I need a little bit of shading help on the inside corners of my brows, and this product doesn't really stick on bare skin. A combo of a brow pencil + this works well for me!

*my best beauty finds come from Birchbox & ipsy! sign up for either for $10/month: ipsy // Birchbox
and I've reviewed about a million ipsy bags and Birchboxes here*

Currently / Nashville: adding this in here as I try to stay on top of Nashville's latest and greatest
+ Clyde's on Church opened in Nashville a few months ago, after being a Chattanooga favorite for years (I got to visit the original in May!) Not sure if I've ever mentioned a) how much I love playing ping-pong and b) how few public tables there are in town. Clyde's has a great food & drink selection and is the perfect spot to meet friends (or take friends from out of town.) There was also a picture of Avril Lavigne on the wall of the bathroom I used which is an automatic 10 points.
+ Batter's Box is a baseball themed bar in a double-wide trailer that is dangerously close to my office (across the street.) And if you're too good for that, we have no business being friends. The pizza is reportedly just a frozen pizza from the grocery store, but how does it taste so good? I have gotten free beers twice- once when I was an accidental witness at a wedding there, and once when I took them their mail! Can't beat that $4 Reuben, or that patio on a sunny day.
Currently / shopping:
+ I did something I've NEVER done and ordered something random after seeing it on Pinterest (surely this was in your feed, too?) This Cupshe two piece is still en route, but I love the Summery colors, and the fact that they're separates (crop top!) At $20, it won't be a loss either way.
+ Three words: 60's botanical print. I wanted everything in this print from Old Navy, and ended up with the top and dress (and by the way- did you see this picture?? We had a [planned] epidemic at a work function in this dress.)
+ My "boss" Christine & I are having a bralette Summer. Because let's be real- these are just lacy sports bras. I've picked them up in pink and charcoal at where else, Old Navy, and have been loving layering them under tanks.
+ I had an overnight bag (from Borders books, of all places) that I loved literally to death. On a recent wedding overnight, I realized that I didn't have the perfect overnight sized bag. Enter this Vera Bradley duffel (and my birthday month coupon!) Now, I'll be the first to say that Vera can be a little basic, but do you own one of these?? I have a large duffel as well and can honestly say it's a favorite for travel- they are so easy to throw everything in AND I love the bright prints. So call me basic! 
Now it's your turn! Got a life, pop culture, beauty, Nashville (or local to you :) or shopping gem to share? Send it my way! 

Here's a look back at my Current States for May / April / March / February / January

Tuesday, June 28

In Training

| lip: NYX Butter Balm in Ladyfingers | dress: Old Navy | hoodie: an American Eagle relic | purse: Marc Jacobs via Carina (similar to this one) | watch: c/o JORD | kicks: Nike outlet | 

photos by Adriane Smith Creative who I am babysitting for on Friday (!)

If I've said it once, I've said it a hundred times: we are truly #blest to live in a day & age where trainers are in style to wear with anything. Trainers & knit dresses have become such a go-to for me lately! Which you already knew, since I posted an almost identical outfit on the blog recently (same dress, different print, different long-sleeve layer). Also, shout-out to Nicole who rocked a dress + trainers combo on her blog this week (and looked real cute doing it, I might add.) 

This ensemble is basically a dream when you're traveling- just in case you need to drop everything and run through the airport at a moment's notice- and trust me, I just tried that out traveling to and from San Diego, when I wore yet another trainers + dress combo. You just can't beat comfort + function that is still on trend! 

This was a super casual outfit for work a few weeks ago. I actually loved just how casual this zip-up (from American Eagle circa 2005. TRULY a relic that I will keep wearing even when the sleeves have holes...because they do...) made the entire look. And pretty sure the hood saved me from a couple monsoon showers. 

I think that's really all I have for you today. If you have a frock + sneaks (like, how many times can I say dress + trainers in one post- there's another one!) that you've shared recently, I would love to see it!

I've been getting together my current states post for June- be sure and check back on Thursday for what I've been into & up-to in June! Have a great rest of your Tuesday!!