Last Sip of Summer

posted on: Friday, September 29, 2017

For better or worse, late September in Chicago has been: HOT. While I'm mentally ready for autumn, the 95 degree days simply can't be ignored. For now, I'm holding off on sweaters, boots and sipping Cabernet — and embracing dresses, sandals and crisp whites. A fun opportunity arose to try a collection of white wines from Rueda, a prominent wine region of Spain. (If you like Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio, you will love this wine.) It's refreshing, crisp, vibrant — and Spain’s most popular white wine, referred to as Rueda 'Verdejo.'

Verdejo is a white grape that's been growing all over Spain, predominately in the northern Rueda region, for many centuries. Rueda Verdejo wines are known for their bright citrus qualities, as well as balanced acidity, freshness and versatility. And how about food pairings? I put it to the test. 

According to its flavor profile, this wine pairs especially well with shellfish, cheese, vegetables and spicy foods. In the name of research (wink, wink)... I created a charcuterie tray featuring featuring prosciutto, Italian salami, assorted olives, peppers, dried fruits, sliced pear, grapes, a mix of cheeses (I especially love Sartori cheese) and a variety of crackers. All delicious!

Here are the 3 wines I tried: Jose Pariente Verdejo 2015Marques de Riscal Blanco Rueda 2015 and Telmo Rodriguez Basa White 2015 (all $20 and under). Make sure to keep an eye out for the Rueda logo when you’re shopping at your local wine store. You can also find Rueda wines on (use the code “RUEDA” to take 10% off your order).

Thank you to Rueda Wine for sponsoring this post.


posted on: Wednesday, September 27, 2017

{preparing for a wedding planning visit to New Orleans next week!}

{indulging in a weekend treat with Stan's}

{this pretty floral arrangement certainly brightened my week}

{my favorite cashmere sweater was recently restocked in multiple colors}

{revealing a before and after look at our living room}

{answering a coffee talk Q&A series}

{mum's the word}

{I couldn't resist these little babies...!}

Coffee Talk (Vol. 3)

posted on: Monday, September 25, 2017

QUESTION: What made you want to start your blog? What is your background?
After graduating college in 2010, I began working at a large PR agency in Chicago and built a foundation in media relations, spanning traditional media (like magazine, television, newspaper, etc.) and 'newer' media at that time (e.g. social media and bloggers). In that role, I'd pitch media on behalf of clients, and secure coverage to help promote a new campaign or product. Eventually, bloggers gained more and more credibility (and influence) as a true media source, even from a business perspective. The blogging world caught my attention, and it played into my interests of writing, photography and design, too. In 2013, I started this blog as a side project, really. I kept it a secret for awhile, using it as a fun and creative outlet for myself — then I really ran with it 'publicly' months later. What I like most about blogging is: ultimate creative freedom (there's no managing editor here!), the opportunity to work with brands and ideas I genuinely love, and of course, connecting with you (my wonderful readers!)

QUESTION: I LOVE your hair. Can you share what hair products you use?
Thank you! Most days, I use this shampoo and conditioner, followed by this styling treatment and dry oil for shine at the ends of my hair. This collection I use is really great for brightening blondes, too.

QUESTION: I want to refresh my place with some new furniture, but I'm on a budget. I know you love Pottery Barn and Restoration Hardware, but do you have any other favorite places (not ultra pricey) to find furniture and decor? 
Oh absolutely! I've had excellent experience ordering from Wayfair. (Our kitchen sink faucet was even ordered off of Wayfair). I've also had good luck with Overstock (like our coffee table), World Market, All Modern and even Home Depot (like this beaded mirror). Another idea: check out store's kids or 'teen' collection... many times, Pottery Barn Kids or RH Teen carry nearly identical pieces for less. Lastly, be open to hand-me-down furniture. You can always re-stain, paint or reupholster to better fit your style.

QUESTION: I'm helping to host a bridal shower next spring in Chicago. Do you know of any venues that'd be good to host an event at?
How fun! A few places popping into mind are: Hampton Social, DL LoftSophie's, By The Park, Eden, and Cafe Spiaggia. I'd recommend checking out PartySlate, which is a helpful resource in finding venues depending on your party size, budget and location.

QUESTION: I need a cute new pair of PJ's ... do you have any favorite pajama brands?
Eberjey makes super soft PJ's... I have this sleepshirt that's wonderful. I also love this PJ set by Hanro and these satin PJ's by Victoria's Secret. For robes, Plum Pretty Sugar makes my personal favorite floral robe.

Have a question you'd love answered? Submit a question anonymously, send an email or reply below!

7 Style Trends for Fall 2017

posted on: Tuesday, September 19, 2017

What's trending for Fall 2017? Here are seven styles to watch for this season:

VELVET  |  From outerwear to accessories, velvet dominated the runways for fall 2017. Rich in texture, it adds a bit of luxe any look. I'm loving this velvet tank that could be worn in a variety of ways, this investment bag and these beautiful velvet heels.

FALL FLORALS  |  Like we celebrate in spring, floral print can be embraced and worn into fall. Just look for richer tones, like black or burgundy, or muted colors, like dusty rose, to keep it seasonally appropriate. I absolutely love this floral blouse and this long sleeve dress under $120.

MULES |  Without doubt, the 'it' shoe of 2017 is the mule. The trend really caught on with the Gucci loafer, and other variations followed. A few pairs catching my eye are: this classic shoe under $100,  these fun floral mules, plus a leopard mule that be perfect with denim.

BURGUNDY  |  Some variation of burgundy, oxblood, or wine hue seems to be trending each fall. The shade is rich in color with deep purple and brown undertones. It's easy to wear the trend with small accessories like a soft scarf and structured mini bag, or a cashmere cardigan and simple shift dress.

LUXE CLASSICS |  Structured silhouettes, rich jewel tones and animal print are all back on trend —not that they've ever left. Expect to see statement sleeves from the 70's, power blazers from the 80's and simple black turtlenecks from the 90's. Worn well, these classics always stand the test of time.

MOTO  |  Moto encapsulates that ultimate 'cool girl' vibe. Think: leather jackets, heeled bootiesoversized aviators and leather leggings. Try the 'moto' trend by pairing a masculine piece (like a leather jacket) against something more feminine (like a lace camisole).

METALLIC  |  Metallic pieces are catching the spotlight this fall. I have my eye on this stunning midi skirt under $100, a new gold link bracelet and these studded flats. Metallic nail polish is even having a moment, too.

How I Asked My Bridesmaids

posted on: Friday, September 15, 2017

cute ways to ask bridesmaids
will you be my bridesmaid card
whispering angel rose 2016
wedding agenda sugar paper
fleur de lis glasses anthropologie
bridesmaids gift box idea
cheers coasters
will you be my bridesmaid gift box
frou frou chic ribbon
bridal party gift idea
will you be my bridesmaid box gift
Pop the rosé ... I'm excited to share how I asked my bridal party to join my side next October! Now that each of the six girls have been asked in person, I can spill details. Since becoming engaged, I knew I wanted to put together a little something special for my bridesmaids. I picked up these glossy white boxes at the Container Store and filled them each with a handwritten note inside these Will You Be My Bridesmaid? cards, along with coasters, a mini bottle of Whispering Angel rosé wine, plus these cute fleur de lis glasses — which I love, especially as a nod to our wedding setting in New Orleans. Asking my bridesmaids (and maid of honor) was such a fun and special thing ... even more than I had expected. Things are certainly beginning to feel 'real'!

So, what's up next? We're headed to New Orleans in two weeks to visit our wedding venue and meet with a handful of vendors. (Feel free to tag along on Instagram!) I hope you enjoy seeing glimpses along the planning process, and hearing how I asked my bridesmaids — I’d love to know how you 'asked' your wedding party (or any planning tips) in the comments section below.


Bridesmaids Cards (c/o White Elephant Designs) || Cheers Coasters (c/o White Elephant Designs) || Wedding Agenda (c/o White Elephant Designs) || Fleur de Lis Glasses (Anthropologie) || Whispering Angel Rosé Mini Bottles (c/o via Wikibuy) || White Boxes (Container Store) || Silk Ribbon (Illume Silks) || Pink Crinkle Paper (Container Store) || Gold Damask Paper (Michael's)

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