Christmas has cometh early

Nordstrom’s Annual Anniversary Sale is back and just as in years past, It’s like a shoppers paradise, especially if you’re located in NYC {there’s no sales tax!!!!}. When I was in high school Nordstrom was one of my first jobs, I worked in the BP and Savvy departments and from then on out I was hooked on not only the brands the store stocked {they always had my faves!} but also because of their unprecedented customer service. So my loyalty as far as a department store has always been with them {and one other Dallas, Texas based mega store … NM hint hint} So naturally when the end of July rolls around I’m giddy with excitement to see what fall goodies Nordy’s will be coming out with. Luckily, I’m saving you a little bit of time and sharing my picks from the sale!

Side note, I enjoyed every last minute {sitting poolside of course} scouring that sale to find these gems!

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, Beauty Edition, Sales, Nordstrom

The exclusive beauty offerings this sale are pretty fant-freaking-tastic. For starters, you’ll find make-up palettes and more that you’ll actually use on a daily basis. Enter the Bobbi Brown “Nude on Nude” eye palette complete with eyeliner and mascara or this ridiculously bold pink triple threat from NARS, done! To top if off there are so many products I currently have in rotation that I couldn’t believe it {See #2, #3 and #4}

The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Fall Wardrobe Staples-Accessories

Now onto the goods, you know, the little pieces that will elevate your fall wardrobe are quite impressive this sale. This dainty necklace could not be more wearable {and it already says ‘Ashley’ so count that one as worn by the time this post goes live} nor could this men’s inspired Michael Kors watch. Essentials such as over-the-knee black boots and moto-boots that can go with everything are smart purchases right now so snag those immediately. And who could say no to an oxblood and black tote to lug your life around in style? I know I couldn’t.

The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Fall Wardrobe Staples

And yet, even after all of that, THIS is where the Nordstrom sale really gets me, the wardrobe staples that I can already envision myself living in all season long. From the two-tone coat and these leather trousers to this deep navy crop top and worn in boyfriend jeans. I may be a summertime kind of girl but my excitement for fall is definitely heightened by the thought of these outfits.

The Weekender: In New York

Manhattan, New York, NYC
Weekend weekend weekend is here here here! So much for whomever said summer was supposed to be relaxing! A full calendar during the week likely means it’s a jam packed weekend as well and why the heck not. This weekend it’s all about NYC friends so enjoy!

  • Beast of Bourbon.  Has managed to combine two of my favorite things into one. Frozen. Whiskey Cocktails. Need I say more?! Southern gals rejoice.
  • Yes please. Grand Banks. A boat, booze and oysters.
  • The Five Story behemoth of a sale is back with a vengeance at the Bowery Hotel this weekend. A little Alexander Wang and Balahmin? Sure why not.
  • Tomorrow from 10 – 6PM stop by the Anthropologie pop-up shop in SoHo to enjoy jams, baked goods and so much more!
  • The mothership of all H&Ms has opened in NYC, complete with an insanely chic home department.
  • Fridays are about to be SO much better thanks to Dream Dry who every Friday from here until Labor Day are doing flower crowns and blowouts. Sign me up!
  • I recently had brunch at Margaux at The Marlton and it was freaking FABULOUS. A must try.
  • The Apartment by The Line is popping up shop again with iced coffee and art. Stop by from 11 – 6!
  • The rooftop garden at The Met is still going strong, have you gone yet?
  • On a side note, Texas just keeps getting prettier. I can’t wait to head back in August and shoot at Jacobs Well.

Have a wonderful wonderful weekend,

A

{image via here}

RED HOT SUMMER

Red Hot Summer

When July rolls around we’re all pretty much in an elated casual summer style mindset but then the relentless July heat hits and all of the sudden it’s a whole new fashion game.  You don’t want to look like a drowned rat, you want to still look like your stylish self and as much as we’d all love for a bikini to be suitable daily attire during the summer it just isn’t. {Unless of course you’re living on a beach, then by all means rock that bikini 24/7, the rest of the world is envious of your life right now.} It’s all about finding a balance, especially when the weekend comes around. All too often I’ve seen people who practically give up just because it’s 100 outside. There are three things I don’t go without in the summer {maybe more but these are the important ones} … my cut-offs, sunnies and wedges. Truth be told, I have a minor obsession with cut-offs, I currently own six pair, but they just go with everything and this particular pair that I DIY’d help elongate your legs creating the illusion of longer legs! {Tutorial coming soon!}  In order to keep myself pulled together I paired my summer must-haves with a structured sheer lace top that I scored at Zara back in March with a little black bra underneath. Showed some skin but balanced it out by pairing a longer sleeved shirt with that had a higher neckline.

Snag the look:

DIY’d cut-offs // Zara lace top similar here and here // Huit bra old; but I’m majorly obsessed with this little black bra from Anthropologie  and this one from Free People // Vintage Gucci crossbody worn as a clutch via SLN //

How are you beating the heat in style this summer?

love good laughter love2

Red Hot Summer Red Hot Summer Red Hot Summer Red Hot Summer Red Hot Summer

Vacation Chronicles: Napa, California

I’m finally sharing a few snaps from my trip to Napa a few weeks ago {Better late than never, right??}  This part of the country is just breathtakingly beautiful. Napa always welcomes me with pristine weather, the nicest people and each time I’ve gone it has been  one of the most relaxing vacations ever. I’ve been fortunate enough to have visited Napa a few times in recent years and each time I manage to find a new winery or restaurant that I just fall in love with. If you have not been I could not recommend a US destination more, it’s a mere 45 minute drive north of San Francisco {another personal favorite}, the weather is perfect year around, the accommodations are delightful and the most important “sell in” here is that you taste wine from sun up to sun down. This happened to be a very last minute vacation with my family and one that wound up being in one word perfect.

Russian River Valley copy

{A little bubbly at Ironhorse}

After finding insanely affordable flights, we booked our room at the Napa Valley Lodge through Priceline {for a freaking steal too!} This gem of a place was beyond splendid from the second we checked in we were met by the friendliest staff, a wonderful room with a patio that faced the outdoor gardens and pool and so much more. There were bikes to borrow for the day, which we absolutely took advantage of, and outdoor fire pits where we sat at night, star gazed, swam and drank a little more wine.

Napa, California, Travels

{Poolside at Napa Valley Lodge}

The wineries:

  • Rutherford Winery A friend told me about Rutherford winery solely for the fact that it had such an incredible view of Napa’s lush, green rolling hills that you could view from their picnic area. And that it did. We snagged a bottle of wine, some chocolate covered blueberries and parked it outside with the most beautiful view imaginable.
  • Raymond Winery I won’t lie, we stopped here for three reasons: a) there was a Frenchie Winery {their winery for dogs!} b) the winery is quite picturesque and they know it hence why they stocked it full with cool oversized chairs and chic frames! c) a very enjoyable garden that we found more insightful than some of the tours people had told us about. The wine was fantastic as well!
  • Mumm Napa We ended one of our days here and mainly due to the fact that while they had bubbly, this spot had a large outdoor patio where we were able to sit, take in the views and relax a little more. {Can you see a trend here?!} We did a little sparkling wine tasting which was just delightful.
  • Silver Oak I visit to Napa is not complete without a stop by this spectacular winery. I was here back in September and had to come back again this trip. Their Cabernet Sauvignon is excellent, the property beautiful and the staff is absolutely phenomenal.
  • On our way down to Half Moon Bay we decided to take the scenic route and headed north just a bit to the Russian River Valley. We stopped for jams at the local Kozlowski Farms and took in the absolutely breathtaking views at Iron Horse Vineyard while sampling some delightful wines in their outdoor “tasting room” that overlooks rolling hills of grape vines. This may have been the highlight of our trip.

Other favorites that I have visited in the past but not on this trip include: Sullivan Estate, Domaine Chandon, Swanson Vineyards, Newton, Sinskey, Markham Winery and Grgich, where you can show off your best Lucy and Ethel grape stomping skills during the fall season!

Please note, that while yes I consume my fair share of wine, I love to go to wineries and I regularly do tastings, that does not mean I am an “expert”!

Rutherford Winery, Picnic, Napa, California

 {The picnic view at Rutherford}

Raymond Winery, Napa, California, Wine, Vineyards

{Picturesque backdrops at Raymond Winery}

Raymond Winery, Vineyards, Napa, California

{The frenchie winery at Raymond Winery}

Russian River Valley, Iron Horse, Napa, California

{The menu at IRussian River Valley, Iron Horse, Napa, California,2 Russian River Valley

The food:

While the primary focus in Napa is on their wine, there is quite the food scene there!

  • Farmstead at Long Meadow Ranch served up a delightful brunch, kick ass bacon and killer bloody marys, perfect for when you need a break from all the vino!
  • Gott’s Roadside is a Napa staple. An establishment that prides itself on serving up stellar American classics {i.e. cheeseburgers and chocolate shakes, yes please!}
  • Tra Vigne was outstanding. The garden patio was so reminiscent of our trip to Tuscany a few years back, the food was wonderful and the wine list was obviously fantastic.Tra Vigne, Napa, CaliforniaGotts, Napa, California, Burger Joint, Burgers
  • Tra Vigne, Napa, CaliforniaTra Vigne, Napa, CaliforniaTra Vigne, Napa, California

The Weekender: Taking on the Weekend

Killing it at the beach

Wow, talk about a whirlwind week! I was pleasently surprised that following a wonderful long weekend back home in Texas this week pretty much flew by. Though I won’t lie, I started following the Lake Austin Spa and Resort instagram and it is definitely making me crave another trip down to Austin. I mean who wouldn’t want to enjoy this gorgeous place?! Needless to say I’m missing Texas but being back home here in NYC hasn’t been too bad, especially when I’ll be hitting the beach this weekend followed by what should be quite the World Cup watch party on Sunday!

Whatever your plans are this weekend, I hope you have a wonderful one! Enjoy a few things to do, my fave links from the week and all of the little things I’m currently coveting below! {hint hint, they’re all on sale!}

xx -A

New Yorker’s  

  • The Philharmonic is back performing in Central Park this evening and Monday night so grab a blanket, a
  • bottle of wine and some snacks and enjoy a wonderful evening!
  • MOMA PS1 is back at it every single Saturday until September 6th so you can get your fill of music and art (and booze) in one place.
  • NYC’s best bagel (according to BuzzFeed’s tedious taste testing) is Brooklyn Bagel & Coffee Co. Interesting.
  • Birchbox opened up it’s highly anticipated first brick and mortor store in SoHo, complete with a BYOB (build your own box!) station! Love it!
  • Celebrate Bastille Day on Sunday at the Montmarte party {oui! oui!}
  • Whip up Momofuku’s Crack Pie whenever you want it. {Yes, you read that correctly}
  • A side shout out to my dear friend Laura whose film The Living just won “Best Dramatic Feature” at the Manhattan Film Festival. Solid proof that busting your ass gets you places!

Good reads:

  • This week I was introduced to Maria Brito’s blog Out There and am hooked. This is one that is definitely worth adding to your reading list!
  • At work, listening to music {currently a bit obsessed with the Sam Smith station on Pandora} is part of my daily routine, I need to focus and often times it’s either that or locking myself in a conference room so that I’m less tempted to join in on that wildly unnecessary 30 minute conversation about why Kim K posted yet another half naked selfie on instagram. This Fast Company article gives it to you straight on just how music affects your productivity.
  • That’s a wrap! The Fall ‘14 Couture Shows just ended in Paris and I must say that both the Chanel and Dior shows were spectacular. Per usual.
  • I’m setting up shop and will be selling some of my threads online very soon {more details to come next week} but this article helped me determine just how to go about getting rid of it all!
  • SATC set designer reimagines Carrie Bradshaw’s coveted, unforgettable apartment
  • Yes, this does sound like a dream job. Where can I sign up??
  • This summer lentil salad from Sacramento Street is the easiest and tastiest dish I’ve made all season long. Definitely worth a try!
  • As was this summer bruschetta recipe from Bright Bazaar was perfect for a recent dinner party!

{Image via here}