September 29, 2015

{INTERIORS} Our Los Angeles Home Makeover

The most exciting thing about moving into our new townhouse in Los Angeles, besides the promise of better weather and closer proximity to my amazing family, was having the opportunity for Ali and I to decorate a space together. Though we've been living together for over two years, when Ali moved into my apartment in Brooklyn, the space was definitely, unequivocally mine. Ali had very few personal items other than clothes that she added to the space, and though it was equally ours, it never totally felt like it. Starting from scratch in LA gave us the chance to equally contribute to our decorating plans, picking out pieces together that would shape this new chapter in our lives. 

Shortly after moving, my friends at Target reached out with an incredibly generous offer to help us design and outfit our new home - all under the guidance of home decorating genius and incredible spirit Emily Henderson and her super talented, super patient team, (to say we were distracted with wedding planning, honemooning, and moving our things across country would be an enormous understatement). I knew instantly when Ali and I met Emily for the first time that she completely got us, our lifestyle, and our goals for our new home. We wanted to create a space that was warm, inviting, reflected our personalities (and my love of pink and Ali's love of my love for pink), and that also allowed us to evolve as we welcome life changes. We wanted a space that was sophisticated and pulled together, but still had the whimsy and playful energy that we seek in our everyday lives. In a short amount of time, Emily and her team were able to transform our mostly-blank-canvas into a gorgeous space that really feels like our home

Before Emily and her team came in, we only had our couch (a custom mega-splurge from Cococo Home), our brass coffee table (a wedding gift from my grandparents), and a lone fiddle leaf fig tree. It was basically a big empty space - one that felt empty, cold, and had a world of untapped potential. 

Because we had this space virtually empty for so long, I was so nervous that we'd lose the open, airy feel of the room once we started bringing furniture into the space. The last thing I wanted was to make this large, bright space feel claustrophobic and small - and yet even though we brought in a lot of furniture, the space still manages to feel incredibly open. Emily taught me lots of fun (and easy) tricks for maintaining an open, airy feel: though I had purchased bold, graphic black & white vertical striped curtains, Emily encouraged me to stick with subdued, white panels. The result? We got the luxurious, lengthening effect of curtains while maximizing on the potential to allow natural light in. Another amazing trick? Floating furniture! We found the super versatile cabinets that would become our media console at IKEA -- and with some added hardware (a vintage find by Emily's team), and wall-mounting the units, we created a luxe looking piece with breathing room underneath. The solid grey-green rug, courtesy of Lulu & Georgia, also helped the floor space feel expansive while tying in the sage tones of the upholstered chairs and the graphic wallpaper. 

I love, love cooking, entertaining, and finding an excuse to throw an elaborate dinner party, and so I was really excited about having a dining space that would accommodate that. Emily's team sourced a vintage, oval dining table that they had professional lacquered to a modern, sophisticated white finish - which was the perfect contrast to the black dining chairs and black bar stools we had picked out for the breakfast counter. 

I had also included the Jonathan Adler Sputnik chandelier on my very first mood boards I created for my home, and it was absolutely one of the defining bucket-list pieces that I hoped to have in our home. When Emily told me that Lamps Plus was supplying the fixture, I was beyond ecstatic (I'm actually pretty sure I cried). Both Ali and I (yes, really, both of us), also really wanted to have a pink wall somewhere in the space - to pick up on the pink accents in our kitchen (we lucked out with lots of pink Le Creuset and CuisinArt). 

The gallery wall over the dining table is also not something I would have thought of myself. I loved the idea of having a gallery wall in general, but without Emily's guidance, I would have thought additional artwork would compete with the gorgeous chandelier. However, because the artwork all tied in with the wall color (Pirouette from Target), it had amazing harmony. Plus, like Emily kept repeating to me throughout the decorating and styling process, "pretty always goes with pretty," touche! 

Make sure to check out Emily's blog for more home style how-to's, and grab a copy of her brand new book, coming out in just two weeks! I got a chance to take a sneak peek inside the pages of Styled and it is equal parts major eye-candy and innovative decorating tips! 

Thank you SO much to Target for providing home furnishings and Emily Henderson's design services!!! Special thanks to Annie, Sonya, Emily, Brady, Ginny, Sara, Brian, Chandler, and the Target team for making this experience so special!

Thank you to Zeke Ruelas for the photos of the space and Jessica Isaac for the portraits.


September 28, 2015

{STYLE} Goodbye Summer, Hello Fall!

Though summer technically ended last week, the higher temps have had me holding onto shorter hemlines and bare legs (though my trip to London was a nice reminder of what fall will be like)! Despite the lingering (and welcomed) heat, I've been transitioning my wardrobe more into fall colors - and embracing things I usually steer clear from, like purple and orange, because I just can't get enough of the entire 70's palette and look - especially when I first saw this dress and completely fell in love with the silhouette -- swingy hemline, cuffed sleeves, and an a la mode high neck? Yes, please! And once the temperatures really start dropping again, I know it'll look just as great with opaque black tights, an over-the-knee boot (perhaps these amazing new ones from Eloquii), and a camel colored coat with a lush faux fur collar

Autumn is here, babes. Cheers to the countdown to sweater weather!
Photos by Lydia Hudgens


September 17, 2015

{STYLE} Do Pinks Have More Fun?

When I first decided to go blonde from the Christina Hendricks inspired red I had been rocking, everyone around me was asking if it was true that blondes have more fun. It's a cliche, but at the time it felt real: a lot of things were changing in my life rapidly, far greater and more important than my hair color, but I was having more fun, and it was hard not to attribute some of that happiness to my bright, new, super fabulous hair color. But like the highlights I begged my mom for when I was 13, I knew that lightened locks were mostly a foundation for more fun and more opportunities, so soon after going blonde I dipped into the territory of lilac locks and pastel pinks - but only for short periods of time. I have a long history of experimenting with my hair color - and I guess this is the first time I'm admitting to my mom (hi mom) that my early foray into highlights was a super manipulative tactic to then start the process of testing out every color of the rainbow. My first experiment, of course, was with pink - and then I ventured into cherry red (short lived for a competitive swimmer who couldn't keep up with the pace of that cherry red turning fire cone orange), and then royal purples and navy blues.

I took a break from crazy colors while in college and doing a rotation of internships in super professional settings, and then starting my career in the creative-but-very-corporate design world in New York, but once I set my eyes on freelance life, I again dabbled with adding streaks of blue and purple to my then jet-black mane.

Now, with mine and Ali's wedding behind us and a lot of adventure on the horizon, it seemed like as good a time as any to have some fun with pink hair - my perennial favorite hue. It felt pretty serendipitious when I got an email from Pravana asking me if I wanted to come in to their studio to try something new.... duh. I entrusted their master colorist/super talented multi-hyphenate Jamie to use a mixture of Pravana Vivids Magenta, Pink, and Neon Pink to create a super dimensional head of hair. Now that it has faded a bit, I've been maintaining the color using Pravana Vivids Pink to achieve the perfect shade of cotton candy pink... and I couldn't be happier.

Do pinks have more fun? Probably. I'm really, really loving this more than I've loved most colors I've had in my hair. And it doesn't hurt that I had a couple of little girls ask me on the street if I was a princess... The answer to that is a definite yes.


September 11, 2015

{STYLE} Jeweled

Perhaps it's the changing weather, or the bodily confusion of bouncing from climate to climate and timezone to timezone, or maybe it's the feeling of being inundated with constantly evolving "must have" trends, but I've been increasingly out of the loop when it comes to the art of dressing. My M.O. lately has been to execute a single look that I love - that feels comfortable, that makes me happy, and that makes some kind of statement - and wearing it to death. It didn't hurt to do a serious purge of my wardrobe a couple weeks ago that culminated in loads of donations and a closet sale to benefit the LA LGBT Center to force me to reassess every item taking up space in my wardrobe. Maybe the Kondo method did get to me (finally?), but each item I pulled out, I was asking myself a series of questions, but the most important, by far, was, "does it make me happy?"

This dress, which I bought as soon as it became available after pining for it since the Kate Spade FW15 show, has been in constant rotation for me -- and there's a good chance you've seen it already if you're following me on Instagram or snapchat. I think it's one of the most "me" pieces of clothing I've come across in a long time, and whether I'm wearing it with sneakers for a casual day look, or a sleek pair of pumps as I did for a series of business meetings a few weeks ago - it's something I feel exceptionally good wearing. It's definitely climbed up the ranks and earned a permanent position as one of my favorite pieces in my closet - sitting pretty next to my pink cocoon coat, my tumbled motorcycle jacket, and my kitty-printed shoes. 

September 2, 2015

{STYLE} The Line By K

I'm not a body-con girl. While I love playing with different silhouettes and shapes, form-fitting all over has really never been my thing. I love it on other people (and my girls Gabi and Nadia wear it sooooo well), but I've always felt a little self-conscious and outside of myself in body-con styles. But, there was something totally intoxicating and mesmerizing as images of Karla Deras' collection The Line By K rolled out, and I fell in love with the idea of becoming one of the girls who wear these looks so effortlessly - like Karla, and Christina, and Gabi, And Nadia.... and the entire Kardashian-Jenner crew. And even though I definitely do not have the proportions or shape of my girlfriends who have worn these styles, there's something about the way Karla's collection is cut and tailored that sort of made me feel like I was faking the ever-so-enviable (to me, at least) hourglass shape. Topped with a long duster? Perfection, and truthfully: not one I would have tried without a little visual inspiration from Gabi & Nadia.

Bodysuit & Skirt by The Line By KDuster from ASOSNecklace c/o Lulu FrostTassel Heels c/o Loeffler Randall, Mini Chanel Flap Bag, Hair color by Pravana