Monday, August 22, 2016

business professional dress

business interview dress
asos marble watch
business meeting outfit
nude asymmetrical dress
Steve Madden black pumps
structured business purse
interview appropriate outfit

DRESS: ASOS || BAG: old {save}{splurge} || SHOES: Steve Madden {similar} || WATCH: ASOS || BRACELETS: Baublebar {similar}

Happy Monday, y'all! I'm so excited to feature this dress today because it's so different than the dresses I normally wear. This year, I knew I would need more clothes that would be appropriate for interviews & fit along the lines of business professional, so I was on the hunt for something professional without looking boring. I would always rather opt for a dress, especially when it comes to business, because it's just one item of clothing to worry about instead of a blouse, pants, blazer etc. When I came across this dress, I knew it was a winner. The neutral beige color makes it perfect for any season (  add tights and a jacket for winter ) and the fit is appropriate without looking like it came from the back of your grandma's closet. I love the subtle asymmetrical hem, which adds just enough of a flair.

To keep it professional, I added a simple pair of black pumps and a classic black bag. I found this bag at TJ Maxx for $50 a few years ago and it's one of the best purchases I've ever made from them! The outside still looks great and there's practically no signs of wear anywhere. The style & size are perfect for business occasions: it fits anything you may need ( planner, notebook, water bottle ) but still looks so sleek and professional. 

To top it all off, I added this adorable marble face watch, also from ASOS, and basic bangles from Baublebar. A simple necklace would also add the perfect finishing touch!

Thanks so much for reading! Have a great week :)

xoxo

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Thursday, August 18, 2016

pale pink sundress

beaded by w tassel necklace
the university of texas personal style blogger
texas blogger
black polarized rayban sunglasses
sam edelman yardley sandals python
flowy summer dress
pale pink summer sundress

DRESS: Bevello Boutique {save}{splurge} || SHOES: Sam Edelman || NECKLACE: Beaded by W {similar} || BAG: old {save}{splurge} || BRACELET: old {similar} 

When I came across this dress earlier this summer, I knew I had to have it. Pale pink is one of my favorite colors because it compliments my dark hair well and never makes me look more pale than I already am. To make it even better, this dress has a breezy cut which proves so necessary when everything you put on starts sticking to you because Texas is so  dang hot mid August!

To add a little bit of excitement to the look, I added my go-to pair of sandals from Sam Edelman. They always seem to match every outfit and add just enough of a pop to an outfit without being overwhelming. To tie in the shoes, I added this tassel necklace which I've featured a million times. I originally picked out this necklace because I loved the bead colors and black tassel, but I had no idea it would become such a staple in my wardrobe! Last year, I went through multiple phases where I would wear it every day for weeks. It's another one of those pieces that always seems to go with everything, but it's so simple to throw on and forget about. From constantly wearing it to school, throwing it in my bag after class, and traveling with it all over the world, there hasn't been any problems with anything breaking or any signs of wear. I would definitely recommend checking out the rest of their jewelry; I promise you won't regret it!

Thanks for reading!
xoxo

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Monday, August 15, 2016

homemade individual funfetti layer cake

bite sized cake
layer cake in a jar
homemade funfetti cake
duff goldman funfetti cake recipe
cake in a jar
bite sized dessert
gift sized dessert
layer cake in a jar to go

PRINTABLE RECIPE

Hey, y'all! Today is move in day for me, so I thought there would be no better way to celebrate than with cake! Funfetti cake to be exact. Because everything's better with sprinkles! I've been so scatter brained these last couple of weeks trying to make sure I had all of my pillows, enough athletic shorts to make laundry last as long as possible, and all of the little things you never realize you need! I'm sure there will still be more things that come up that I forgot I needed, so it'll just have to be a work in progress for a little while! I hope to share a dorm room tour with y'all as soon as it's all put together ( see my room tour at home here ) so stay tuned to see where I got all of the dorm room essentials! 

Until then, how adorable are these individual sized cakes! I found the inspiration one night when I couldn't sleep on YouTube, and knew I had to recreate it! It's the best idea for party favors, a kids birthday party, or just a fun way to mix up your normal cake. The recipe uses homemade funfetti cake and homemade buttercream icing, but honestly I think the box will work just as well. There's no magic to what goes into the cake; it's mainly about assembly! To save time, opt for the box route, but I do think the homemade version was really good and it got great reviews from the friends and family I shared it with. The one thing I will say about the recipe is to be careful with baking time. Originally, the recipe called for ~25 minutes at 350°, and when I inserted a toothpick it came out clean. When I actually cut into the middle though, it was still all batter. I reduced the heat to 325° and cooked until it the middle of the cake was thoroughly baked, so I would recommend starting at 325° and just watching it more carefully! I ended up running out of the homemade icing, so I substituted Betty Crocker's recipe ( container from Walgreens to be more exact ) and it worked just as well!

The trick to making these adorable little cakes is the assembling. To start, pipe ( or if you want to be lazy like me, dollop ) enough icing to cover the bottom of the jar. [ I used mini mason jars to be more personal sized ] Next, add a few dashes of sprinkles. Once the cake has cooled, cut it into small squares. On top of the sprinkle layer, add a layer of cake, crumbling even more as needed. Repeat the process until the jar is almost full. Top off with icing and sprinkles and you're good to go!

If you recreate this recipe, I would love to hear what you think of it! Let me know your favorite cake flavor in the comments below :)

xoxo

Thursday, August 11, 2016

off-the-shoulder top

navy off the shoulder top with lace detail
white ripped skinny jeans
summer girls night out outfit
nordstrom bp tassel crossbody purse
old navy white ripped skinny jeans
lace detail mexican style top
off the shoulder top 2016

TOP: old {save}{splurge} || JEANS: Old Navy {similar} || BAG: Nordstrom {similar} || SHOES: Steve Madden || BRACELET: Baublebar || EARRINGS: Kendra Scott

A few years ago when the remake of the movie "Footloose" came out, I was obsessed with everything Julianne Hough. She definitely had a more provocative style than my 15 year old self did, but I still fell in love with her style. She had the best body and rocked a ton of tight crops, so when I came across this top ( four years ago ) and saw the tiny crop to it, I knew I had to have it. I actually think I found it on sale, how crazy is that! It's been tucked in the back of my closet for years, but when I was packing for Europe, my best friend suggested I bring it for Barcelona. Considering I had only worn it once before and was about to give it away, I was hesitant to bring it, but it ended up being my favorite outfit of the entire trip! 

Since off the shoulder is such a huge trend at the moment, it fit in perfectly. The lace detail was great for Spain, and helps to balance out the subtle crop. I paired it with my new white ripped jeans ( would you believe they're from Old Navy?! ) and simple nude sandals. This bag I picked up from the Nordstrom sale perfectly matches the shoes and ties the whole look together. This is the best outfit for dinner, girls night out, or a fiesta themed party haha! Even though I couldn't find this exact top, I'm loving the dupe I found ( here ) which shares the same navy color. 

Thanks for reading!
xoxo


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Monday, August 8, 2016

the ultimate guide to Houston


Hey y'all, welcome back! Today I have a very exciting post to share with all of you. As I get ready to move off to college (how crazy is that!), I have to squeeze in all the things I haven't covered yet this year into a very short window of time. [ click here to read about my transition to Houston] In the winter, I partnered with an app called Townske to show y'all my guide to Houston ( here ), but I wanted to do something more than a few stops! I knew I wanted to do some kind of roundup of some of the best restaurants I've discovered this last year, because who really comes to Houston and doesn't become a foodie? As I was thinking about all of the amazing restaurants I've discovered, I decided why not make a ebook that all of you can download, completely free, showing you the best spots of Houston! Naturally, because my mind is so annoyingly OCD, the book is broken into four categories: fitness, shopping, food, and entertainment. I'll let y'all look through the book to see all of the stops, but I wanted to highlight a few of my favorite places below!

FITNESS: 

I know fitness isn't always the most popular category to explore, but for those of you new to Houston or wanting to find a good workout class when visiting, I thought this might be helpful! 


1. DEFINE FITNESS: A few years ago, I tried a Pure Barre class. I hated it. I never wanted to do barre again. And then I watched a documentary about Carine Roitfeld and fell in love with ballet. I ordered a "Ballet Beautiful" DVD which was great, but there was no inspiration to push through when I was the only one doing it. With one month before graduation, I wanted something that would get me into shape, that wouldn't break the bank, and was still somewhat practical to do. I decided to try out Define's "body" class, which is essentially barre. And y'all, I fell in love. The instructors actually want to help you and will always make sure you know what pose you're doing and how to actually do it. They have a great package which lets you go an unlimited amount of times each month for around $150, which is pretty good considering one class costs $24! I love the class setting, upbeat music, and motivational teachers, so I would definitely recommend trying out a class.

2. BUFFALO BAYOU PARK: When there's not heat advisories outside, I love going for a walk or a run at a park. It's a great way to get a little tan while still staying active, and Buffalo Bayou definitely has the best views for this. Not only is the bayou right next to the paths, but there's an amazing view of the downtown skyline the whole way. Morning and evenings are my favorite because of the way the rising & setting sun hits the buildings downtown. Plus it's usually a little bit less crowded than Memorial Park, so a must try!

SHOPPING: 

1. RICE VILLAGE: The overall style in Houston is fairly simple, but can get pricey ( think Joie t-shirts and Joe's Jeans ). There are a ton of adorable boutiques, but it's nice to find things that are still fun and affordable. I love the Village for this because it's close proximity to Rice University means that the stores are going to cater to more of a college crowd. You can find stores ranging from Elaine Turner to The Impeccable Pig. Pomp and Circumstance is a must, and you may as well end a successful day of shopping with a crepe from Sweet Paris. Heads up though, parking can be tough. 
 
2. MONTROSE: This is such a fun area for shopping on a budget. It's surrounded with the best thrift stores in Houston, and has such a fun, hipster vibe. Stop by Buffalo Exchange to find designer bags in great condition for as low as $50, or run across the street to American Apparel to get a new basic t-shirt. Common Bond & Agora are great places to stop for a cup of coffee to pick you up!

FOOD:

This was hands down my favorite category to create. I could go on and on about so many of these restaurants, but I'll keep it to my top four ( just know, this is like asking a mother to pick her favorite child ) :


1. SUSTAIN KITCHEN: Overall, Houston is a fairly healthy city. Despite the excessive amounts of chips and guac you'll find, you'll also find a ton of people out running and sipping on green juices. Sustain is famous for their Acai bowls and for good reason. They let you customize each item in your bowl, which is super important for me because bananas make me sick and almost every place only uses bananas. The bowls also have a great thick consistency, which you value so much more after trying runny smoothie bowls. Also try their juices or bowls on the go!

2. RUGGLES GREEN: Another great restaurant is Ruggles Green. Everything on their menu is "green", meaning local, organic, all-natural, and the list goes on. Their sister restaurant, Ruggles Black, is "paleo" meaning they follow the paleo diet principles. As great as this all sounds, sometimes you just want a good pizza or burger, which is why Ruggles Green is so great! They have some of the best pizzas in town ( and totally Insta worthy ) and also have great sandwiches and the. best. sweet potato fries. I like the City Centre location the best for shopping or a movie after.

3. ADAIR KITCHEN: Adair's was the first restaurant I went to with my friends in Houston, and I've been hooked ever since. Like to the point where I take every single person there. Literally. Ever single one. Whenever I had an extended lunch period at school, I would always try to make my way to Adair to pick up a fresh salad or juicy turkey burger. They're famous for their chicken and waffles at brunch, but I love their apple pecan chicken salad. Life changing, y'all. If there was only one place I could recommend, this would be it!


4. ESCALANTE'S: Before I moved to Houston, a family friend remembered this restaurant and said we had to try it for their fresh, table-side made guac. Oh my goodness, how that guac changed my life forever! I'm telling you, you haven't lived until you've experienced their guacamole. Houston, and Texas for that matter, are so closely associated with Tex-Mex, so I love Escalante's because it seems so much fresher and healthier than any other Mexican restaurant. Try the Highland Village location for a quick cupcake from Sprinkles after. 

ENTERTAINMENT:

1. IPIC: I honestly didn't think going to a movie theater could ever be this elegant. From the insane island in the bathroom, to the full restaurant that will bring you food throughout a movie, iPic will make you feel like a million dollars. Their theater rooms are broken into two sections: the pods and the normal seating. The pods seat two people to a pod, and are definitely geared towards couples. Each pod gets free popcorn and blankets for the movie, and enjoys a better seat further away from the screen. The "normal" seats are anything but normal! The seats are all huge, leather chairs, with tons of leg space in front of you. Although you don't get the free popcorn, the tickets are cheaper and it's better for girls night out instead of date night. To make it even better, the theater is located in River Oaks District which is so pretty to walk around at any time of day. 

2. TOPGOLF: I never thought I would enjoy going to a driving range, but Topgolf makes it so much fun! All of the "holes" you can hit into are valued with a different score, so you can play games or matches with your friends. Don't worry about bringing your clubs: both a men and women set of clubs are provided. Fans will keep you cool in the summer and outdoor heaters warm you up in the winter! Waiters are there to bring you drinks or food, so it's hard to not spend hours there! 



I hope you enjoyed this guide to Houston! There's a link below where you can download the guide for yourself, and it's also available to download on the sidebar of the blog. Hopefully this will help you the next time you're in Houston, or introduce you to some new places if you're already here! Let me know what you think of this type post in the comments below.

xoxo

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD

ps: If you know of a better way to make the ebook available to download, I would love to know! Feel free to leave a comment below or send me an email :)