Friday, October 30, 2015

Fave Fall Jewels

My jewelry tastes have always been rather simple.  I hate wearing anything on my wrist so I've never been in to watches or bangles like most girls.  I have a few pieces of jewelry that I wear on a regular basis- a gold Chanel loose bracelet for going out, a pair of David Yurman studs for work, and a few dangly earrings for weekends.  I have a couple fun statement necklaces for when I'm feeling bold, but truth be told, shopping for jewelry isn't often on my radar.  As most bloggers know, companies regularly pitch products to you, and I personally feel that it's rare I find a product pitch fits my style.  But then I discovered Rocksbox- a jewelry subscription service.  For $19 a month, they send you a set of 3 pieces to wear as often as you like until you're ready for a new set.  Simply send back your 3 pieces and they'll send out 3 more.  You can browse their inventory and create a wishlist of the pieces you like the most, and they'll tailor your set based off of your wishlist as well as a comprehensive style survey.  I have been constantly wearing the A.V. Max caged ring and Gorjana dangly earrings they sent me this week:

Rocksbox is perfect for me, because I don't know enough about jewelry to be on the cusp of all the trends.  By having their style team curate a set for me and send it to my doorstep, I've found that I discover new-to-me styles and brands I wouldn't have come across otherwise.

My other recent jewelry discovery is Rhea Kulcsar jewelry. Rhea is in the NYC Junior League with me, and every time I see her I die over the jewelry she's wearing.  And without fail, I always ask, "Where did you find that?!"  Le duh, it's her own design.  I pulled together my favorite jewelry finds, and Rhea's designs are included below as #1, 5, and 7:

Shop This Board:

1.) Rhea Kulcsar 3 Cylinder Ring $65/2.) Agate Spear Cuff in Black $29 per month/
3.) Plumeria Collar Necklace $54/4.) Sophia Studs in Merlot $365.) Cylinder Bangle $50/6.) Malibu Studs in Ebony $48/7.) Rhea Kulcsar Tassel Necklace $1258.) Medusa Snake Cuff $100

Do you have a jewelry line you love?  Let me know now that I'm trying to be an accessories connoisseur. 

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Take Me Away: Muse Hotel in St. Tropez

St. Tropez has long been on my "must-travel-to" list.   My mom grew up in Hawaii and my brother and I spent our childhood years visiting my grandpa there, so for me, a worthwhile vacation has always been associated with the beach. While in Tulum this past August, my high school girlfriends and I decided we'd save up and go next summer to Paris with a stop over in the French Riviera.  As I write this post I can already envision the rosé we'll consume and the sarong/bikini combo I'll sport, a-la Brigitte Bardot.

{Bardot and Alain Delon in St. Tropez, 1968}

What I learned when I went to St. Barths last year was, simply put, the French do it better-  At least, when it comes to vacationing.  They also seem to have a healthier relationship with food and the parenting thing down, but those are discussion topics for another day.  While daydreaming about next summer, I took it upon myself to research St. Tropez hotels.  As I've mentioned before, my go-to website for finding unique, fabulous places to stay is Mr. and Mrs. Smith- and that's how I stumbled upon Muse Hotel. Marketed as a "heavenly hedonist's hideaway", I was intrigued.  

St. Tropez is known for it's picturesque winding streets, lively beach parties, and epic super-yachts.  While I admit I can be a bit of an aesthetic hedonist, even I know one weekend spent in this Euro playground would be plenty.  But anything worth doing is worth doing well- and that's where Muse steps in. Located in the chic Riviera hilltop town Ramatuelle, about a 5 minute drive south of St. Tropez, Muse features a cabana-lined pool, in-room spa treatments, and a Mediterranean restaurant with only the most fresh, local ingredients.  There are 15 suites total, and 10 of them have their own private pools.  

And why would you shuttle to the beach in a taxi, when you can ride one of the hotel's cute bicycles?

See more photos and read all the details about Muse Hotel here.  Any seasoned St. Tropez travelers out there?  What should not be missed?

Monday, October 19, 2015

Sam Loves: 6

This weekend came and went in a flash, and one thing became glaringly apparent- I have no idea how to dress in cold weather.  Spending the last 5 years in Houston acclimated me to extreme humidity and heat, and winter wasn't given much thought.  So here is the truth- I currently have 2 pairs of pants in my closet, 4 scarves, and 1 "heavy" coat.  No gloves, no hat, no winter boots for NYC weather.  I was surprised to find it dip in to the high 40s while out and about at night on Saturday, and I have a feeling I'll want to burn my North Face jacket come April.  Nevertheless, I've made it my goal to learn how to dress for winter this season, and I'll be sure to share the process.  But for now, I can't stand to think of the cold, so I'm focusing instead on what I really want to be buying- cute sleepwear, a maroon hat for OU games, and leopard anything:

Shop This Post:

1.) Michael Stars Wide-Brimmed Fedora $68/2.) Cheetah Key Chain Tassel $45/3.) La Perla Sangallo PJ Set $150/4.) Racerback Shift Dress $48/5.) Saint Laurent Tote $2,750/6.) Michele Varian Brass and Leather Foxen Necklace $98/7.  2016 Smythson Leather Agenda $235/8.) Vince Camuto Lace-Up Peep-Toe Pumps $128.959.) Leopard Velvet Lumbar Pillow $80/

Did everyone have a good weekend?

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Needing, Wanting, Loving: Flare Jeans

It's official- low-rise flares are back this fall.  And make no mistake about it- my 14 year-old self is rejoicing!  To be honest, I never could pull off the boyfriend jean or the high-waisted pants, and after a weekend spent at Austin City Limits, I'm praying I'll never have to see the high-waisted-jean-shorts-with-a-bit-of-butt-peeking-out ever again.  But what is universally flattering?!  A flared leg.  It hugs in the right places, giving your body the right amount of feminine contour. 

This trend could not have come at a more opportune time.  I'm in desperate need of pants.  Currently, I own 1 pair of pants and subsist in leggings and tunics for winter.  Obviously, I know this won't cut it during my first NYC winter.  And all you men, don't assume this trend is off limits for you.  Just take a page from one of my favorite movies, American Hustle, and rock them like Bradley Cooper and Christian Bale:

I kid, I kid!  Now, in case you aren't as thrilled as I am to see this reinvented silhouette back in the spotlight, let's all be thankful for one thing- no velour tracksuits have been spotted just yet.  

Happy Tuesday!  I hope you all had a great weekend. 

Friday, October 9, 2015

Friday's Worthy Links

TGIF!  The weekend is here, and I'm back in Texas, and all is right with the world. As I mentioned yesterday,  I'm heading to Austin this morning for ACL, but not without first stopping for oysters at Perla.  After dealing with a few weeks of NYC in the 50s and 60s,  I'm more than ready to be sweating in the 90s.  I might even try to make it to Barton Springs Pool before the weekend is up?  Before signing off, I wanted to share a few noteworthy links and articles I found interesting, and thought you might, too.

- A heart-wrenching story with a raw reminder that any of us can craft the perfect lives on social media.  

-One of my favorite authors and speakers, Elizabeth Gilbert, wrote a wonderful status update about the power we hold when we envision more for our lives.  If you're going through something (and aren't we all?), I suggest you read it!

-I've said it before, and I'll say it again- The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up is changing the entire way I look at my home and my possessions.  Even though my friends and I have often joked that I'm a neat freak to the nth degree, and my mom recalls stories of me organizing my shoes as a toddler, I've realized through reading this book how much I choose to hold on to out of guilt or emotional attachment.  Author Marie Kondo is a consultant in Tokyo who helps her clients declutter their homes through a unique and tried-and-true approach she refers to as the KonMari method.  One memorable quote from her book:  "It is not our memories but the person we have become because of these past experiences that we should treasure.  This is the lesson these keepsakes teach us when we sort them.  The space in which we live should be for the person we are becoming now, not for the person we were in the past."  The bottom line- if an item doesn't spark joy when you see it in your closet or hold it in your hand, get rid of it.

-I'm excited it's One Room Challenge time, although a little sad I'm too busy this year to join in on the fun.  I can't wait to follow along as Gaby, Lindsay, and Cassandra transform their spaces. 

-Here's a little something for all the overachievers out there.  I cracked up when I saw this.

-I wish I had spotted this Paloma Blue playsuit in time to order it for this weekend's festival. I'm obsessed!  Here are a few other things I'd love to be taking along for ACL weekend:

{image above via For the Love of Bubbly}

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Weekend Recap

Last weekend one of my best friends came to visit me in New York, and we had such a great time that I have to document it in a recap post.  Grace and I met in undergrad at OU and have been virtually inseparable since then.  When I made the move here a few months ago, I made her promise to visit me as soon as she could.  We've been on many vacations and weekend jaunts together, and in 2010 we spent New Years Eve in Times Square.  I was so looking forward to being reunited in a place we both love, and her stay, albeit short, did not disappoint.  Friday we went to dinner at Balthazar  (my favorite) and stayed for a few cocktails at the bar.  Saturday, we grabbed a quick brunch at The Penrose and avoided the rain by going to the matinee of Wicked.

Before you write this off as "2 Basic Girls Do NYC," let me tell you about our dinner experience.  I'd been dying to try Beauty & Essex, but could only manage to get us a 5:45 pm reservation even two weeks in advance. So after the show, we headed to the Lower East Side for dinner with the rest of the senior citizens.  Walking in to Beauty & Essex was a bit confusing, as the entry is a thrift shop.  However, once you walk in to the restaurant itself, the atmosphere is dark, sexy Art Deco glam.  Even at 6 pm, the restaurant and bar were hopping, and we soon understood why.  The cocktails were truly works of art.  I had a St. Germain cocktail and Grace had the Old Dirty bramble (tequila, smoked blueberries, honey ginger, and lime).  They also brought us an amuse bouche of pureed beet on brioche: 

For dinner, we shared the tuna poke wonton tacos, chile relleno empanadas, thai style deep-fried shrimp, and lobster mac and cheese. No calorie was spared. After we finished eating, we walked over to the Ludlow Hotel for a drink, and the atmosphere there did not disappoint either. There was a man in a dramatic kimono parading around for most of the night, and neither of us could figure out if he worked for the hotel or was just an entitled guest.  It takes all kinds, I suppose.   The sun finally shone a bit on Sunday, so we went for a quick brunch near my apartment in the Upper East Side at The Writing Room before heading to Central Park.  I loved the industrial lighting and the plethora of books:

My brunch date was so in to our conversation.

While gallivanting through Central Park, we stopped for a few selfie opportunities.

And we rowed our way around the lake.  Or, I should say, I convinced Grace to row me around while I laid back and got some sun. 

I love this girl! Thanks for the visit, G!  Now I'm off to Texas for Austin City Limits.  I can't wait!
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