Sunday, July 29, 2012

Floral Pastels











Top (Love Culture - a little different, but love this!) | Jeans (Vintage - similar here) | Belt (J. Crew) | Shoes (DV by Dolce Vita - similar here) | Ring (Henri Bendel)
Photography by the sister, edits by JChenPhotography

It's been quite a few days since I last posted, so for this week I'm going to skip the Sunday Love post and give you all an outfit post to make up for all the days without an update!

Ever since my mom dug these jeans up from her boxes of old clothes packed away, I've been completely in love with them, brainstorming all the different outfits that I could put together with them. When I first bought this shirt, I bought it with these jeans in mind. The floral print has hints of the peachy color from the jeans. Combined, it makes a very spring/summer outfit. I broke up the colors with a very neutral belt and shoes so it doesn't take away from the two bold pieces in the outfit. I also didn't think it was necessary to over-accessorize with this outfit.

High-waisted bottoms are super in right now, so if you've got them, rock them! But keep in mind that if you do go with something high-waisted, like skinny jeans or shorts, try to stick with a looser fitting top. If you do wear a tight tank or shirt with it, layer a slouchy cardi or blazer over it to elevate your style :)

Thanks for reading! And I will be updating on my usual schedule beginning from today!

XOXO, 
E ♥

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

1 Cardigan, 3 Ways




Classy and Sophisticated: Gap (cardigan), Urban Outfitters (dress), Forever21 (necklace), Black Belt (forgot where I got it)
Casual Night Out: Gap (cardigan), Dress (boutique)
Cute and Preppy: Gap (cardigan), Old Navy (shirt), Forever21 (necklace), Zara (jeans), J. Crew (belt)

Sorry for the lack of posts! If you read my note at the bottom of the last post, you'll know that I'm currently away for work, hence the extremely poor quality photos and editing. However, like I promised, I'm trying my best to blog for you guys, so I decided to show you my three outfits that I put together for my trip.

I didn't want to bring a bunch of stuff, so I only brought one cardigan. Therefore, I had to figure out how I could style that cardigan in three different ways to make it seem like three whole new outfits. The cardigan, if you can't tell from the pictures, is a peachy nude color. In the first outfit, I paired it with a more "conservative" looking LBD. I think for this outfit, without the necklace, it would have been a very "old" looking outfit, nothing interesting. But because I was able to tie in the color of the cardigan into the necklace, which is very J. Crew-esque, my problems are solved and you have a very chic outfit.

In the second outfit, I went with a more casual and comfortable dress which is actually supposed to be worn as a sundress. But I decided that if I paired it with the cardigan and threw on a pair of dressier shoes (wedges or flats, or even cute sandals), then I could up the sophistication of the outfit and turn it into an outfit for a casual night out instead of a casual day at the beach.

The last outfit is something I would probably wear as an everyday outfit, but it's also business-casual appropriate. I got so many compliments on my necklace the day that I wore this outfit, and once again I was able to tie in the color of the cardigan with my necklace and my belt (by the way, I wore this with the shirt tucked in!) 

Let me know what you think in the comments below, and please "follow" my page!
Thanks for keeping up with my blog even though I haven't been able to update it everyday, and once I get back to my normal routine I'll have better quality pictures up again! If you would like more posts like this, leave a comment down below!

XOXO, 
E

Monday, July 23, 2012

Waist Deep






Top (Forever 21) | Belt (Urban Outfitters - no longer available. Try this) | Shorts (Urban Outfitters - last season. Love these) | Shoes (via DSW - similar style here) | Arm Candy (Forever 21) | Necklace (Forever 21 - in LOVE!!) | Earrings (Forever 21 - check local stores or try these)
Photography by my sister, edits by JChenPhotography

I've been wanting to break out these high-waisted shorts I bought from UO last spring, and I was trying to figure out how I could style it best. I decided to go with a pretty neutral top but one that still looked dressy and effortless, and leave the rest to the accessories (my fav!) 

The belt I have on is one of my favorite belts. It works with so many different outfits, and I think in this outfit it is a really key piece. It brings the outfit from looking plain and expected to something much more. I continued with the black and gold accents, along with geometric shapes, in my accessories. And just as a side note, I am completely in LOVE with my earrings and my necklace. I just picked them up this weekend! The necklace comes in both gold and silver (I prefer the gold), and it really can dress up an outfit. I believe it's a new item at Forever 21, so if you love it, get it soon! In my opinion, accessories are key, no matter how understated they are! How you accessorize seriously influences the final outcome of your outfit :)

Let me know what you think! And as always, thanks for the continued support and following! I'm nearly at 3,000 views in less than two weeks, and I just got my first official follower! Thank you so much! I really appreciate it all :)

XOXO,
E ♥

P.S. I might not be able to blog for the next couple days for work-related reasons! However, I will try my best, so stay tuned!

Sunday Love ♥: Holy Grail Skincare Products

 The six products I absolutely cannot live without!

 1) the Balm TimeBalm White Tea Lavender Foaming Face Cleanser - this is great in the evening as a makeup remover and cleanser all in one! It seriously gets off all your makeup and, combined with the moisturizer down below also from the Balm, leaves your skin looking hydrated and refreshed in the morning!
2) Kiehl's Blue Astringent Herbal Lotion - I have been using this stuff for YEARS. I believe this is probably at least my third bottle of this stuff, and I recommend this to all my friends. If I had to pick any product out of these six, this would be my number one choice! It's great to use after a cleanser, both morning and night, on your t-zone and also as spot treatment on any acne (put it on a cotton swab and stick it on any spot on your face until the swab dries up). I guarantee after a couple nights you will start seeing results! 
 3) Kiehl's Cucumber Herbal Alcohol-Free Toner - I've also been using this for as long as the blue astringent lotion, and it comes in as a close second. I use them in conjunction, and this is more for the rest of your face (so apply the blue astringent first, then this). And for those of you who don't know what toner is used for, it's actually a key part of your skincare routine! The purpose of toner is to restore the pH balance in your skin, making it extremely important to use every morning and night :) 
 4) Shiseido Day Moisture Protection - I've been using this bottle for probably 2 years and I am just beginning to run out. I've tried many different day moisturizers in between, and none of them have really compared in my opinion. Some were too watery or too oily, some weren't moisturizing enough, etc. I've always ended up coming back to this one, and I am definitely going to repurchase this!
 5) the Balm TimeBalm Vanilla Oil-Absorbing Face Moisturizer - I kind of bought this moisturizer on a whim because I'd heard great things about the makeup from theBalm, and I ended up really loving it (not to mention it smells great!) Originally, I used it in the daytime because of the oil-absorbing factor, but then I realized it didn't have any SPF, nor did I really like it as a day moisturizer. I eventually started using it at night simply so it wouldn't go to waste, and it was then that I realized it worked amazingly well with the lavender cleanser I mentioned above. It's not the heavy kind of night cream most people would suggest, but I think it does the trick :)
6) Post-Acne Nighttime Spot Eraser - I just picked this up recently after I finally got the chance to stop by The Face Shop in the city (I believe these stores are pretty hard to come by in America). Reading reviews online, it was one of the top recommended products, so I decided to give it a try. I personally think it works better on current acne, but what I really use it most for and love it most for is how great it works on any sort of acne you might have on your back or chest. For me personally, it has really helped improve my skin, and it easily made its way into my list of holy grail skincare products. I have yet to find anything comparable to it yet! 

If you guys would like to see more posts like this, let me know in the comments below! Aside from fashion, I also really love beauty and skincare so I thought it would be nice to share some recommendations, tips, and tricks with all of you :) 

Thanks for reading and I'll see you all tomorrow!

XOXO,
E ♥

Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated with any of these companies/brands - all reviews are my honest opinions! 

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Weekend Feature: The Photographer - Vintage Red






Top (Forever 21 - wear this instead!) | Skirt (vintage - similar here) | Belt (J.Crew - love this) | Accessories (Forever 21 - no longer available)
Photography and edits by me! :)

My mysterious photographer is finally revealed! Here she is in a skirt I adore oh-so-much that belonged to my mom years ago. For those of you who love vintage pieces, I'd go pester your moms or aunts to look through any of their old clothes they have stashed away in the attic! You can find lots of hidden treasures :) 

She kept the top neutral, but not too plain since there is some ruffled detailing. Her necklace is one from my big collection of Forever 21 statement pieces, and it is actually one of my favorites because it looks just like one from J. Crew but at a much more affordable price! 

If possible, and if you guys like it, I'll try to do some more Weekend Features, whether it be other people and their style or some of my other favorites in the world of beauty and makeup :) Let me know, and thanks for everything!!

XOXO, 
E ♥

Friday, July 20, 2012

Nude is the New Black






Top | Belt (love this!) | Pants (similar here) | Shoes via Lord and Taylor (but you can buy here) | Necklace (try this instead!) | Watch
Photography by my sister, edits by JChenPhotography

Happy weekend! Was it just me or did every other day of this week seem like Friday? Wishful thinking...Anyways, as tiring as work gets, I continue to blog everyday because all of you have been so supportive! Of course I love it, but I also don't want to disappoint any of you guys :)

So today's outfit is one of my favorite's. I think it's very business casual, but not the "boring" business casual you usually get or think of. Granted, my company is more casual than business, but I had just bought these great cropped dress pants from Tahari and I thought what better to wear it with than a cute nude lace high-low top and my adorable new bow belt? I kept it simple and classy with my black wedges and finished it off with a gold cascade flower necklace from none other than Forever 21. 

I thought a top knot was very appropriate for this outfit - kept it looking clean and put together, and also gave more attention to the outfit :) What do you all think?

Thanks for reading and I hope everyone has a fantastic weekend! 

XOXO, 
E ♥

Monday, July 16, 2012

Sunday Love Part II: Hauling ♥



Thought I'd share with you all some of the pieces I bought this past weekend. I would say this is the majority of my haul, give or take a few pieces that were more basic so I didn't include them in the pictures. It was a Forever 21/Love Culture kind of day (but in all honesty, I have never really frequented Love Culture that much in the past). I will link all (or as many) of the pieces down below if you're interested in picking up the same thing! 

And for any of you that are wondering which would be my top favorites out of all of these since I wouldn't recommend going out to purchase every single one (I know I did, but I will be the first to admit I have serious shopping addiction that needs to be addressed), I'd choose: 

1. Textured Gold Button Blouse
2. Studded Collar Denim Shirt with Cut-Out Sleeves (no longer available online)
3. Bow Belt (no longer available online - love this one instead!)

Other links:
1. White and black polka dot shirt (similar here)
2. Peach and White Polka Dot Shirt

Check out your local Forever 21's, Love Culture's, and Aldo's to see if the pieces that aren't linked are in-stock there!

Thanks for reading, and if you want to see how I styled everything, keep checking my daily posts! They're bound to pop up somewhere :)

XOXO, 
E ♥

Sunday Love Part I: Macarons ♥


Green Tea Macarons with Vanilla Meringue Buttercream and Chocolate Ganache Filling

This weekend was really nice and relaxing! Spent a relaxed Sunday shopping and baking macarons with two very lovely ladies :) If you want to know how we made the macarons, keep reading! The recipe will be below: Makes 25-30 Macarons

What you'll need:
Strainer
Parchment Paper
Whisk
Spatula
Almond Flour (1 1/8 cups)
Powdered Sugar (1 1/2 cups)
Granulated Sugar (4 tablespoons)
Egg Whites (3, at room temperature)
Mixing Bowls
Mixer
Piping bag

Prep:
Leave three egg whites (covered in saran wrap) out for 1 day so they are at room temperature. 

Directions:
1. Sift 1 1/8 cups of Almond Flour into a large mixing bowl.
2. Sift 1 1/2 cups of powdered sugar into large mixing bowl with almond flour.
3. In another mixing bowl, whip three egg whites with 4 tablespoons of granulated sugar (whip with hand or stand mixer).
4. Whip egg whites and granulated sugar until mixture is firm, fluffy, and white, like cool whip (should be able to flip bowl over without having the meringue fall out!).
5. With your spatula, slowly fold dry mix (almond flour and powdered sugar) into your meringue. Do not over mix!
6. Add green tea powder into batter (or any other flavoring of your choice, i.e. instant coffee for coffee macarons!)
7. Cover pan with parchment paper.
8. Fill piping bag with batter and pipe batter onto parchment paper.
9. Do not over-pipe or make macarons too large! Dollops should be around 1-inch in diameter. 
10. Let them sit for around 30 minutes. Batter should flatten out and look a bit glossy. 
11. Heat oven to 300˚ F and bake for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, turn oven to 200˚ F and bake for 15 minutes.
12. Remove from oven and let cool before removing macaron shells from parchment paper. 

Fillings:

Vanilla Meringue Buttercream
Ingredients:
Egg whites (2)
Granulated sugar (1/2 cup)
Softened butter (1/2 stick)
Vanilla extract (1 teaspoon)

Directions:
1. Whisk egg whites and granulated sugar together in a bowl that will be safe to heat.
2. Boil water on the stove and place bowl with egg white and sugar mixture into the pot of boiling water. 
3. Continue to whisk until mixture reaches 150˚ F.
4. Remove from water and use mixer to whip until firm, fluffy, and white (like macaron batter). Make sure it is whipped until cool. 
5. Add 1/2 stick of butter and continue whipping. 
6. Add vanilla extra and whip until fully mixed. 
7. If need be, refrigerate until use. 

Chocolate Ganache
Ingredients:
Dark Chocolate, chopped or chips (1 3/8 cups)
Heavy cream (5/8 cup)

Directions:
1. Heat heavy cream in a heat-safe pan/pot until it reaches a boil.
2. Pour chocolate into heated heavy cream. 
3. Stir until fully mixed.
4. Refrigerate to let it chill and become firm. 

After everything is fully prepped and cooled, you can start putting your filling onto your macaron shells! To store, keep macarons refrigerated; they should be good for up to a week. I hope this was helpful and your little French pastries come out just as cute and delicious as mine :) 

XOXO, 
E ♥

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Craving: Black and Metal



Wishing for an endless closet of fashion gluttony...What do you crave?

XOXO,
E ♥

Between the Lines




Shirt | Jacket (similar here) | Necklace | Dress (similar here) | Watch | Bag (similar here)

If you all have been checking up on my blog every so often, you'll know that it's been a long while since I've done an outfit post. I wore this outfit to my cousin's graduation back in early June and took pictures with the intention of posting them, but summer got super busy with family vacation and work so here it is now! Better late than never :)

About the outfit: I layered a black H&M top over a zebra print maxi dress that I purchased years ago in high school. To make the shirt look a bit more "cropped", I cinched it in with a gold skinny belt from J. Crew (which you can't see). The jean jacket was also a purchase from many years ago, but like I always say...denim is forever! I love the chunky necklace with this look, not to mention I'm a huge fan of hammered metal pieces. The bag is a metallic gold leather satchel from Coach, and my watch is from La Mer Collections (love their watches!)

Hope you enjoy! Check the links above to find similar pieces, and please keep reading and supporting!

I've made it my summer goal to post daily, and I promise not to disappoint this time! Thanks again and I'll catch you all tomorrow :)

XOXO,
E ♥

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Casual Fridays




So I'm finally back from my two and a half month hiatus, and I just wanted to share with all of you some cute outfit ideas for a casual Friday. I've been working in a fashion company for the past month or so, and I've gotten a lot of inspiration from all the people who work around me. I love this outfit, and I'm craving this Topshop tank embellished all over with daisies! - So adorable. What do you wear for casual Fridays?


Xoxo,

E ♥