Tuesday, September 29, 2015


I, and probably every other 20-something girl, love the time between the dead heat of summer and the chilly temperatures of late fall. I love late September and October in the Midwest. By the time November rolls around, we could be in 70-degree temps or sub-zero. But October is generally really pleasant, and layers consist of sweaters and shirts, rather than big puffy jackets and scarves (big puffy jackets and scarves for warmth are much different than big puffy jackets and scarves for style).

I grabbed this sweater at Madewell last week and at first, I hesitated. But after I bought it and put it on, I knew this would be a new staple for me over the next, oh, six months. It's the perfect length and heft, and it's SUPER soft. I threw it on over a few of my denim favorites and voila! easy, layered, fall look.

As I mentioned a few posts back, it's been hard for me lately to not be critical of my appearance and of these blog pictures. But while my hair may not have ended up the way I wanted, or my layers may have looked a little sloppier than intended, I did notice one hugely positive thing in these pics that Caroline snapped. I look happy.

And not only do I look happy, I feel happy. And to be quite honest, I didn't know if that was possible again! I know, I am so fortunate and don't have any "real" reasons to be unhappy. But the events that unraveled in my life almost 2 and a half years ago made me question a lot of things about love, happiness, and life. But the most important thing I have realized in the time since then (cliché it may sound) is that life goes on. Time heals all wounds. Each day gets a little better than the last.

And one day, when you least expect it, you will look around and just smile. Because...you made it. I made it. I made it to the other side. And while my life was full of much happiness before this journey, it's filled with a new and wonderful and appreciative happiness now. I am so grateful for all the peaks and valleys and I am graciously humbled by all of the friends and experiences and loves that I have had in my life.

Continue to work hard, stay humble, give love, and begin each day with a grateful heart. Good things will come.

Happy Fall, y'all. 

Photography: Caroline Grace

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Sunday Things

I REALLY enjoy my job. But it does involve traveling occasionally for work, and this week, it means being away from my pup and apartment for 7 straight days. Oh, and being away from JR too - I won't miss him at all (that was some serious sarcasm).

So I took it upon myself to take 48 hours this weekend to just relax. I ran some errands yesterday, got my nails done, and then JR turned off the TV, turned on some music, and we made dinner together (aww cute, right?). And as I write this, it's nearly 5:30pm on Sunday, and the only time I have left this apartment is to take Ruby outside to potty. Needless to say, I've been doing a LOT of mindless TV watching (heyyy Bravo), countless laundry washing, and a little bit of internet surfing (does anyone even say that anymore?). Anyway, here are a few things that I have come across today that you might wanna check out!

Blogger Krystal Bick was wearing this little number on her Instagram this morning and I may or may not have ordered it. 

Pasta, anyone?!

How cute are these cocktail napkins? I ordered a few sets for upcoming weddings and bridal showers! Such a cute gift. 

I'm currently reading this book and love it.

I think Ruby needs this, don't you?

Currently lounging in:
 seven styles 
Other cozy sweaters on my wish list:

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Trying something new: Idiot's Guide: Everyday Makeup Secrets

I claim to be many things, but a makeup artist is not one of them. I don't enjoy makeup. I don't enjoy buying makeup. I don't enjoy applying makeup. And I don't enjoy experimenting with makeup. I have worn the same products, in the same way, for at least the last 3 years. Until today. 

I got an email a few weeks ago from a fellow Indianapolis blogger. She mentioned the opportunity to do a beauty post and review of "Everyday Makeup Secrets." I almoooost hit the delete button. Then I saw that this was the "Idiot's Guide" - and when it comes to makeup, that is the perfect word to describe me. So I thought I would give it a shot. Especially since the last time I remember playing around with makeup was when my mom bought me "Bobbi Brown Teenage Beauty" circa 2004.

Now, I'm not trying to become a beauty blogger. I'm not even trying to incorporate beauty posts into my normal routine of style posts. But I am into trying new things that slightly push my comfort zone, and this fit the bill.

The great thing about this book, for me at least, is that it covers the basics. The basic basics. I learned about the different types of brushes, best colors for my complexion, and product expiration dates. But it also goes into more detail on how to recreate classic looks (I'm working up the courage to attempt "1970s bronze") for those of you who are more makeup-savvy. It really is a great tool for makeup users of all types and skill levels. 

I have flipped through the book over the past week, and I had a grand plan to spend the morning attempting to re-create a few styles (thus, the makeup free "before" selfie and the "I'm not so sure about this" mirror selfie #noshame). But after sitting down to really dig in, I realized I'm not quite ready to post any amazing "afters." And that's okay! I may never be able to recreate the perfect smokey eye or attempt contouring, but this guide has given me a great foundation to start. I can't wait to review a few of my favorite chapters and start slowly incorporating some new things into my routine. I feel confident saying that aside from my occasional bright red or hot pink lip, I may actually start trying some brow shaping or light eye shadow. 

Indy makeup artist and author Daniel Klingler's book is available on Amazon. It features 17 chapters covering Getting Started, Breaking Down Your Look, and Bringing Your Look Together. Tons of great tips like "Ten Power Foods for Healthy Skin" and "Identifying Your Face Shape" are included. 

I don't have experience with many products, but the ones I do use, I know well. See seven of my favorites below, and don't forget to check out Danny on twitter (@neckupdesign) for some amazing makeup tips and tricks!

 seven styles 

Featured // floor mirror: West Elm // mirrored star: West Elm // books: Bobbi Brown Teenage Beauty
Manolo Blahnik Drawings 

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of the book to facilitate this review. It did not affect comments about the material; all opinions are my own.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Color Block

Every day over the past few weeks, I have gone back and forth about whether or not I'm ready to welcome fall. On 95-degree days with the sun blaring down on Ruby and me while we take our afternoon walk, I can't wait for crisp autumn days. But then, like this morning, I wake up and walk into the kitchen to make coffee and find myself shivering. I do love sweaters and boots and scarves, but I also hate when December creeps around and I'm always freezing. I'm sad to leave behind easy dresses and open-toed shoes, like the look picture above. 

But really, I shouldn't be complaining at all. It's not past me that I'm just lucky to wake up every morning in a warm bed, with clothes to wear no matter the weather. And I'm lucky to live in a place where each season has a distinct feel and tone and beauty. And for that, I'm grateful and excited to welcome a new season (in more ways than one!). Have a great Friday!

Photography: Caroline Grace

 seven styles

Wednesday, September 2, 2015



I love a good LBD -- who doesn't?! But usually, mine are much simpler. Maybe it doesn't seem like it, but to me, this one felt especially fancy when I put it on. It's easily one of my new favorite dresses, and one that will be making an appearance at a wedding or two. 

And with that...quite honestly...it's Wednesday night, smack in the middle of a very long week. And as much as I love writing and blogging, I'm heading to bed. More to come later on. Goodnight!
 seven styles
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