Thursday, July 30, 2015


"I will shed all of this skin 
down to the very bone beneath it 
if that's what it will take for you to come to the realization that 
appearance is not what makes a human beautiful." 
{Christopher Poindexter}

Guys, I've discovered my summer love {cue One Direction} and it comes in the version of the most perfect off the shoulder top to ever be known to man. Probably an over-the-top statement since it's honestly the first off the shoulder top I've ever even put on, but kids...this is a lesson from life's books -- your first love can be your one true love, and love at first sight does exist. 

I don't talk about insecurities very often, and as a blogger I feel like many of us feel the need to try and portray this perfectly photographed life on Instagram, but let's be honest for a hot second because we're all human here and none of us are as perfect as the afternoon glow through a DSLR camera lens plus a little tweaking here and there on Adobe Lightroom makes us seem {can I hear an AMEN?}. For many years, one of my biggest insecurities has always been my skin. And y'all probably like, girlllll whachu talkin' about. Especially if you know me personally or have met me in real life, you're probably like sista insane she barely gets any acne. Which is a certain extent. Fortunately, I don't have severe facial acne less the stray zit here and there. However, I've struggled with extremely bad chest and back acne for many years now, and I absolutely refuse to wear anything strapless or extremely low cut {especially in the back}. You'd also never catch me dead in only a camisole even if it's 100º outside. I often look on at other girls with envy who have perfectly smooth skin on their chests and backs thinking, they don't even know how lucky they are. It's definitely something that I feel like most women take for granted and probably don't even think twice about. 

That's why for me this top is so magical. I love it because it makes me forget about my outward insecurities because inwardly in makes me feel confident, happy, and beautiful -- perfect skin or imperfect skin. I feel like the girl from Ipanema in this top {yes, I told you I love that song}; I feel like summer shines through me in this top. It's pieces like this where I'm reminded again why I so firmly believe in the power of a great outfit and the influence it has on your own self. 


Madewell Top {FYI I'm wearing a size L...typically an XS-S at Madewell} || Joe's Jeans Bottoms {old} -- similar here and here || Janessa Leone Hat || J.Crew Sandals {last season} - love these || Rebecca Minkoff Bag {old} || Sunglass Warehouse Sunnies c/o || Necklaces : Brooklyn Designs c/o, The Peach Box c/o {15% off with code 'tpb-refined_couture'}

Monday, July 27, 2015

Blacks + Blue

"Understand me. 
I'm not like an ordinary world. 
I have my madness, I live in another dimension and 
I do not have time for things that have no soul." 
{Charles Bukowski}

Back and at 'em in my usual blacks and blue despite the summer heat {and mind you, this cardigan is a wool blend...oops}. It's been awhile since I've gotten much use out of my vast belt collection because for awhile there I feel like the belted look kind of fell off the radar. However, ever since this outfit, I've really been vibin' belts as an outfit accessory and not just to keep my pants up. I really like the slightly retro vibe that this belt gives off with the white stitching and the silver hardware on the tip of the belt. There was something about it that felt like the perfect outfit topper for this pairing. What are your opinions on belts making a comeback -- yay or nay?


J.Crew Silk Camisole - obsessed with this and this || Uniqlo Cardigan - similar here and here || Vintage Levi Cutoffs - similar here || Joie Heels c/o - similar here and here || Chanel Bag

Friday, July 24, 2015


"If you remember me, then I don't care if everyone else forgets." 
{Haruki Marukai}

Apologies for the sporadic blog posts! I know I've fallen a little off track with my usual blog schedule these last couple weeks, but things have gotten pretty crazy around here with traveling and just life itself. However, I promise I have not forgotten about you all, and each post I miss I cringe a little bit on the inside for not staying on top of all my priorities. Today I bring you a summer inspired palette with clean whites and crisp blues. If we're being honest, I'll admit that despite the heat I constantly still opt for black in the summer. But there are still those days when I'm feeling inspired by lighter pairings like this. I love the idea of dressing up cut-offs with a fun pair of heels and a sharp blazer. It's an easy yet comfortable way to dress up a super casual piece from your wardrobe, perfect for dinner out with your girls!


Ralph Lauren Black Label Blazer - try this || J.Crew Shirt {old} - super similar here || Levi Cutoffs {vintage} c/o Bargain District - similar here || Rebecca Minkoff Bag {old} || Sunglass Warehouse Sunnies c/o || Rachel by Rachel Roy Shoes {old} - love these and these

Monday, July 20, 2015

Summer Shirtdress

"Love is a great beautifier." 
{Little Women, Louisa May Alcott}

This summer my favorite silhouette is the summer shirtdress, particularly, the casual summer shirtdress. I love this silhouette for how easy it is. It looks a bit more refined than your basic summer dress, but it still maintains the casual, cool vibe with its more over-sized silhouette. I own a couple dresses {guilty, yes, from Madewell}, and they've been my live-in dresses all summer long. They're the perfect dress to grab and go, and my favorite pieces to pack for vacation! They pair perfectly with your favorite summer sandal {I've been obsessing over these lace-up gladiators two summers in a row}, and top off perfectly with a panama or boater hat. Summer shirtdress = summer uniform. Short and simple.


Madewell Shirtdress - or very similar here || Janessa Leone Hat || J.Crew Sandals {last season} - similar here || Vintage Bag

Monday, July 13, 2015


"It began in mystery and it will end in mystery, 
but what a rare and beautiful country lies in between." 
{Diane Ackerman}

This billowy top paired with these billowy pants make for a dreamy pairing that have me drifting away on clouds of memories and lusting for a foreign rendezvous in a far away land. Call me a dreamer, but that is what I am, and an outfit can transport me to so many places without my physical being ever taking flight. I pictured this outfit against white sands and blue seas or quaint cobblestone roads lined with charming stucco apartments painted a rainbow of pastels, cute flower boxes spilling with life, and small cafés where young friends and couples alike share a quick tête à tête under the beating of the afternoon sun. Call me a dreamer, 'cause that is what I am...


Madewell Top {on sale!} || Aéropostale Pants {different print, super sale!} || Callisto of California Shoes  {sold out} -- very similar here || J.Crew Hat || Necklaces: Coco + Marie c/o || Sunglass Warehouse Sunnies c/o

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Crescent Bay

"Meet me where the sky touches the sea.
Wait for me where the world begins."

I love to be by the sea -- the sound of the crashing waves, the ripple of the waves washing ashore, the smell of the warm sea breeze, and the heat of the sand between my toes. Though personal style for me is often inspired by my moods, I also draw a lot of inspiration from people and places. I can see why New York style and California style differ so vastly, and I often find myself packing for travel with my destination in mind.


Madewell Tee || Madewell Bottoms {on sale!} || Ann Taylor Necklace || J.Crew Sandals - similar here and here || J.Crew Panama Hat || Jay M. Bag c/o - similar here

Photos by JChenPhotography and Pamela Y.