Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Autumn Accessory

So it's not yet August, but I just can't wait for fun fall finds! First on my list is a brand new bag. I'm on the hunt for that perfect black leather satchel, with top handle (or two), and a crossbody strap for those serious shopping trips. I love the stylishly structured look and the spacious inside. I'd gladly take any of the bags below ... though most are FIO (for inspiration only – you know, at those prices)

fall bags

1. Kate Spade  
2. Phillip Lim  
3. Vince Camuto  
4. Time's Arrow  
5. Michael Kors  
6. Michael Kors  
7. Jimmy Choo  
8. Coach

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Pale Pink and Polished

Chicago Stylist

Personal Style

Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
• blouse and jacket from Forever21

• jeans by JBrand
• bangles from Stitch, IGWT, Winifred Grace
• earrings from J.Crew
• sandals from Lori's Shoes 

One of my favorite tricks to dressing for these cool summer days is layering with something like a long jacket. It adds polish to a look, but easy to remove to soak up some sun when it shines. And often the balance is in the details – if not for the sandals, this attire is almost autumnal.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Here's to Your Health

Raw mousse

I finally tried my hand at a recipe I've been holding onto over the weekend. I whipped up some avocados into a decadent dessert – raw, vegan chocolate mousse. I'll admit I was skeptical, but it really was incredible and tasted just like dark chocolate mousse. It got me thinking of other healthy alternative recipes ...

Raw, vegan carrot muffins (so delicious and dense, they're practically an entire meal!)

Baked carrot fries. Dip them in ketchup (or my fave- ketchup mixed with tabasco) and you'll never know the difference!

Banana ice cream. Made with only three ingredients, it's he healthiest dessert! 

Friday, July 26, 2013

Have a Wonderful Weekend!

banana boat dessert

It seems Chicago will luck out with a pleasantly temperate weekend (finally). If you find yourself at a BBQ, try out this fun dessert ... A friend of mine turned me onto a deliciously simple post-dinner snack – the banana boat. Simply slice a banana lengthwise, stuff a few chocolate chips in (I prefer dark!), smear a little peanut butter inside, then wrap the entire thing in foil. Place on the grill as soon as you turn off the flames and leave for about 10 minutes. What you get is a warm, gooey, tasty treat! (also, how fun to add other toppings like mini marshmallows, coconut flakes, or butterscotch chips).  

Also this weekend ...
• Get your weekly fix of festival fun at the Taste of Lincoln Avenue (between Fullerton and Wrightwood). Expect the requisite to-do's – food, drinks, crafts – but also some actually awesome musical acts and complimentary arcade games! 

• This is the final weekend to score some sweet (floor) samples at Jayson Home & Garden. And if you're already full of furniture (or still can't stomach even the slashed prices), snag their garden goods at 25% off in store.

• It's another very vintage weekend at the Randolph Street Market. Grab your shopping tote (and maybe a hot coffee for the pleasant 70's weather) and peruse antiques, vintage jewels, and knickknacks.   

Have a wonderful weekend!

Photo courtesy of Pinterest

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Silver City

Chicago Stylist

Personal Style

Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
• dress from H&M

• jacket and star ring from Forever21
• sandals from Lori's Shoes
• earrings from J.Crew

The easiest piece on warm summer days is often the simplest silhouette. This airy dress is an oldy from H&M, but the lightweight fabric and mixed material keeps it cool. Of course, playing up the silver sheen with some rhinestone sandals and jewels helps polish the look. 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Le Petit Prince


There aren't many things more joyful than a brand new baby ... except for maybe a baby prince! Kate and Will debuted their little man today (she looked stunning, per usual). Can you imagine this boy's life? All of the incredible things to come, and the amazing attire ... below are a few (miniature) fashionable faves, fit for a royal ...
Baby Prince
Baby Prince
Baby Prince

From Top:  plaid cap  //  crest wool onesie  //  traditional trench  //  polished penny loafers  //  the requisite royal prince outfit

photo above from Getty Images

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Going Green

Chicago Stylist

Personal Style

Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
• blouse and slingbacks from Zara

• jeans from Forever21
• tassel bracelet from Oui Madame
• bangle and necklace from Winifred Grace 

This recent heat wave made me realize that as much as I love Chicago summers, anything over 80 degrees is too toasty – I mean, it's hard to look stylish while sweaty! I prefer light airy layers like this Zara blouse (similar one here), and the pop if green is also a bold break from my black and white wardrobe ... perfect for a bright and breezy summer day. 

Monday, July 22, 2013

Wedded Bliss

Planning a wedding can be a smidge stressful, so I was glad Steve and I could enjoy our party and be done with the details. But after endless sifting through all of the lovely dresses, decor, and details, I couldn't help but peek at the pretty pictures every now and then since that day. Well now that my little sister is engaged, I have a new excuse to revel in the beautiful bridal details. Below are some of my recent finds – yes, for the bride ... but who says I can't rock a gold and rhinestone headpiece someday??

pretty bride

Clockwise from top: green garland on the "getaway car"  //  gilded lace cuff bracelet  //  lovely lace dress  //  nude and rhinestone sandal  //  watercolored invitation  //  simple blush bow dress  //  vintage inspired headpiece  //  gold draped Marchesa gown

Friday, July 19, 2013

Happy Summer Weekend!

Weekend Sales

It's been a steamy week, but we're in store for a pleasant weekend ahead ... which is perfect, because there is a lot of fun things going on around the city!

• Stroll the streets of Lincoln Park during their annual summer sidewalk sales. Grab bargains for every room (your closet included). After you've spent your allowance, head around the corner to the fun, flower-powered festival, the Sheffield Garden Walk

• For more stylish sale action, head up north to Winnetka for their annual sidewalk sales. Snag awesome deals all over town, and stay for their block party Saturday night.

• So maybe you want to keep that face fresh instead of sweatin' outside all day ... then head to Nordstrom Saturday morning for their Anniversary Beauty Bash. Score free beauty samples and makeovers starting at 9am. 

Have a wonderful weekend!

Photo courtesy of Pinterest

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Max Heat

Chicago Stylist

Personal Style

Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
• maxi dress and denim jacket from Forever21 (similar jacket available here)

• vintage Coach belt
• brass bangles from IGWT, Winifred Grace, Stitch 

I love an airy maxi to keep cool, but the tricky thing about steamy summer days is finding that comfortable balance between the outdoor heat and the indoor AC. It seems strange to grab a sweater or knit when the temp is almost 100, so a denim jacket is the perfect summer layer.  

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

The French Are Coming!

Isabel Marant

Hopefully you've heard the très magnifique news already ... the next H&M collab is with the incredibly cool Isabel Marant. The designer is known for her luxuriously edgy attire that outfits the chicest French (and American) ladies. Inspired by Paris itself, the french femme will debut her affordable collection of boho-chic fashions in November at H&M. Check out the teaser with Isabel below ...


Photo courtesy of Pinterest.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

City Safari

Chicago Stylist

Personal Style

Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
• ruffled shirt from Target (fun summery version available here)

• skirt from Zara (similar one available here)
• belt from J.Crew 
• sandals from Born Crown
• bracelets from IGWT, Stitch, Oui Madame
• earrings from Forever21 

Mix this shade of green with brown leather, and it always seems to suggest a safari ensemble. But as far as I know, you don't find a polished tuxedo inspired shirt on any safaris. Simple and tailored pieces don't have to equal boring ... small details like ruffles, bright gold earrings, and a few brass bangles add a sleek edge to my urban safari ensemble. 

Monday, July 15, 2013

Soaking Up the Last of Summer

I hate to say it, but before we know it, fall will be here and we will all be cool and cozy in our new layers. So let's soak up the last weeks of summer in some stylish swimwear. As excited as I am for pretty new autumn pieces, I'll gladly stick to the one- and two-piece looks for hot summer weekends. Below are some of my faves (including a few bathing suit bargains) ...


Clockwise from top: plunging black halter with sheer panels  \\  cobalt blue bandeau and tie bottom  \\  nautical inspired bikini  \\  feminine floral strapless one-piece  \\  plunging white butterfly halter  \\  belted black and white strapless one-piece

Friday, July 12, 2013

Have a Très Bon Weekend!

Bastille day

This weekend is Bastille Day in France – so pop your best French bubbly (or something similar and cheaper) and toast to France's Independence. You can join in the city's celebration at Daley Plaza tomorrow, or if you're really ambitious, try the Bastille Day 5k

Also this weekend ...
• If American fare is more your thing, head to the Windy City Smokeout for some finger lickin' BBQ (and music, of course). Not only are Chicago staples like Lillie's Q and Smoque taking part, but big wigs like The Salt Lick and Myron Mixen will be serving up some true southern BBQ.

Martyn George, the perfectly curated vintage kitchen wares shop in Chicago, is holding a sale starting this weekend. The shop will be going fully online, so stop in for great deals, or snag a sale item on their site.

• Roscoe Village is doubling down this weekend with their burger fest and sidewalk sales - fuel up before hitting the bargains!

Have a great weekend!

Photo of the Kessler sisters in 1960, courtesy of Pinterest

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Summer Comforts

Chicago Stylist

Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
• top from Zara

• cardigan by Elizabeth & James
• shorts from Banana Republic
• wedges by Nine West  

It's one of those lazy days when I don't feel like squeezing into a pair of slim pants, or fussing with any structured layers – but lazy doesn't have to mean sloppy. These silk shorts and this long cardigan make for a super comfortable ensemble, but maintain a polished look. Of course, a pair of heels helps any look.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

The Tailored Trend

When looking at the latest runways shows for the resort 2014 collections, I noticed that no matter what their influence, most designers carried over the menswear-inspired silhouettes. Now, as evidenced in my outfits, I sport a jacket nearly every other day, so this is sartorial music to my ears. I love finding a good balance of edgy and feminine, and each of the below designers hit it out of the park (I especially love the lacy details thrown in!) ...





Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Gone Casual

Chicago Stylist

Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
• chambray top and necklace from Forever21

• wrap skirt from Gap 
• bangles from IGWT, Winifred Grace

So turns out there's more in my closet than just blazers and jeans! I dug this skirt out of my archives for a more breezy, summery look than my usual tailored pieces. Paired with a casual chambray top and beachy hair, it seems more appropriate for the balmy weather this week.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Chic in Chambray

I've just about worn holes in my fave chambray shirt – I just love the ease and versatility of casual denim pieces. I love pairing the simple solids with everything from bright red pants, to tying my shirt over a sundress, to pairing denim cutoffs with a sleek black blazer. Below are some of my summer denim staples (which I definitely put to good use this past holiday weekend) ...

clockwise from top: a comfy chambray shirt dress  \\  easy aline skirt  \\  classic cutoffs  \\  my go-to shirt  \\  a crisp denim vest

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy Fourth!


Have a fantastic holiday and I will catch up with you all after the weekend!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Polished and Patriotic

The Fourth of July is one of my fave holidays – it's a perfect summer celebration. The best way to dress for the day is in comfortable pieces that are perfect for a BBQ with friends during the day, and lounging on a lawn at night during the festive fireworks show. Below are some easy staples that, when put together, create a polished patriotic look for the upcoming holiday ...


a classic denim jacket  \\  an easy white sleeveless blouse  \\  cherry red shorts  \\  a vintage red white and blue handbag  \\  comfortable nude wedge sandals