Guest Blogger Series: Father’s Day Edition

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Dear friend and style enthusiast Jamie Gorgas and I met recently to discuss my vision for Bennetts & Madison and to brainstorm development ideas for it’s future.   Jamie has worked in fashion for years and has a keen eye for style.  As Bennetts & Madison takes shape, I am happy to announce that Jamie will be a regular contributor.  She wrote a sweet personal piece on Father’s Day
Father’s Day : How to make it special…
Pete and I often say we’d rather spend money on an “experience” than a “thing”. Every holiday, birthday, special occasion I try to be creative and strive to be out of the box…I get this fro

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m my father who was always so good at surprises and unexpectedness…However, some of my most favorite memories and times I shared with my Dad were not about the crazy or unexpected surprises…they were simple and quiet times we had at home.
As a parent, I realize how important it is to have those moments highlighted in your life so you can revert back and reminisce. It means everything.
BACK TO BASICS
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One of my favorite memories was camping in the back yard with a tent, sleeping bag, tons and tons of pillows. I even remember how it smelled in the tent. It was an exciting adventure in my 8 year old mind and I’ll never forget it.
For Father’s Day, my role as the Mom, there are a couple of things I wanted to contribute to enhance the experience….

Your tent can be illuminated by these fun mason jars with wire lights that you can find at the super market and drug store. I might add a great table light for a summer party as well!

  1. Flickering Battery Operated Candle 2. Fairy Lights 3. Ball jars

In this day and age with every kind of technology at our finger tips, I want to make sure I tap into the things I loved as a kid and give those experiences back to be cherished. A night of finger puppets stands out for me. And all you need is a flash flight…ok maybe the flashlight app…

  1. LLBean LED Rechargeable Flashlight 2. Felt Finger Puppets from Etsy

It’s such a great way to get creative and let your imagination and your kids’ run wild. Even better in a tent.

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The Art of Hand Shadows, Dover Publications

 

Lastly, a way to capture it all…

And back to technology a bit.
There is a great app called 8mm. Take videos of everything on your phone using the camera on this app. It allows you to use an array of vintage filters from  “film noir” to “60s”…whatever speaks to you.

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8mm App

Pick your fav and you’ll make a full blown “Wonder Years” keepsake. You can pair the videos with songs in your library so, yes, With a Little Help From My Friends by Jo Cocker with your video and you are golden.
One of my favorites is Lucky Man by The Verve. It resinates with me and moves me to tears every time. Play for Dad on his special day and it’s pure magic.
Also bacon, that seems to work too…

 

PS…

  1. How cute are these matching family pjs
  2. Keep their feet warm with these cozy camp socks
  3. If you don’t own a tent this one from LLBean is awesome we bought it last year
  4. I love the plaid fabrics these pillows are covered in.
  5. Make it super comfy with this air-mattress
  6. Everyone can sleep together in this huge sleeping bag

 

xoxo

D

Memorial Day Selects: Day 3

G, C & T

Ok, so I have to start by saying…I’m sorry, I failed to post every single day, as promised.  Where I would typically feel defeated for not rising to the challenge (a challenge I set for myself) I am seeing this as an opportunity.  This blogging thing, is not easy, that is a fact, but I’m thrilled to be doing it and I am using my “failure as fuel”.  A dear friend and childhood teammate posted a commencement speech given by Abby Wambach this week, it resonated, so much so that it brought me to tears.  It resonated not only with my 16 year old soccer-playing-self but also with the adult-mother of three girls-me, hustling to live my best life and be my best self.  Every failure, set back, moment where you feel judged is an opportunity to conjure the “wolf” (as Abby put it) in us, to overcome our fears and change the story.  This article written by a reporter for the Chicago Tribute did a beautiful job highlighting the speech’s most powerful points.   Ok, with that out of the way…back to the regularly scheduled program;)

let’s party

Let the games begin!!   We kick off with a pool party this afternoon and the festivities continue throughout the weekend.  Whether you are hosting or party hopping you’ll have some level of party prep responsibility.  This post is dedicated to the indoor and outdoor party decor and hostess gifts that will enhance your party experience.

INDOOR DECOR

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My house is filled with blue and white decor, making it easy to nail a patriotic color scheme by adding red with fresh flowers, flags etc.   Blue and white ginger jars are among my favorite accent items for any space, they can be found in every room of my house.  This, this and this from Aerin for William Sonoma would be perfect used as vases for a patriotic party.  I would use these blue and white gingham napkins from Wayfair year round, with these red and white gingham drink napkins and you have your perfectly patriotic napkin pair.   How cute is this vintage Airstream cookie jar from Pier 1.   Back to Aerin for WS, I would literally buy everything in the collection if given the chance but have been eyeing the blue scalloped edge pieces for a while now.   I love these subtle American Flag plates, too.  Finally, you could use these spatulas yourself or bring them to a party as an adorable hostess gift.

 

OUTDOOR DECOR

 

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If you are planning to host outside these retro drink coolers are perfection, it comes in red, white and blue.   I am thinking they would make an awesome Father’s Day gift, filled with the Mr.’s favorite beverages.  Always game for a photo prop, these are adorable.   Red, white and blue paper straws are a great touch for any patriotic party.  Amazon has an abundant selection of Flags, in all sizes.   This flag bunting from etsy on a yard fence or hanging of a deck would be adorable.   No outdoor party is complete without yard games, these red, white and blue Bocce balls from CB@ fit the bill.    We had a balloon garland for my daughter’s First Holy Communion celebration this month, while they look awesome when finished, be prepared for a least an hour of labor and frustration putting it together, snag this patriotic version on Etsy.   Stock your bar with these “Party in the USA” napkins, cover your tables with this or this and supply guest with these cute star plates and cups.

HOSTESS GIFTS

 

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You could say hostess gifts are my “jam”.  I love finding thoughtful gifts that are selected with the host in mind or specifically for the occasion, it always feels like a fun challenge for me.  This book was written by a family friend of ours from our beach club on Long Island.  I’ve given up on the idea that I might ever be able to make a burger as delicious as his, but his book has given me the opportunity to try (another great Father’s Day gift option).  This candle, diffuser set from the Aerin for WS collection would  make a lovely gift and is on sale right now.   We are suckers for big square ice cubes in our house, they make for such a cool looking cocktail.  I love the idea of pairing this ice cube tray with this chic wine and bottle opener set both from Anthro, perhaps add a bottle of red for the perfect “red, white and blue” hostess gift.   Giving a living plant as a hostess gift can bring beauty to  a person’s home for years, this gorgeous Hydrangea in a scalloped stripe pot from Terrain would make any hostess thrilled.   Finally for the parties that go into the later hours, how fun are these star sparklers for a festive hostess gift.

 

Mini Memorial Day Selects: Day 2

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Memorial Day kicks off summer and is the first of the 3 big patriotic holidays of summer,  we are super excited.   Our sweet little town, with a main street that looks like something out of a Norman Rockwell painting, holds an awesome Memorial Day parade.    Unfortunately, for the past couple of years mother nature has not cooperated and the parade has been cancelled, making the focus of the holiday more about ushering in summer than commemorating our veterans.   Especially for the kids who need the visual cues of the vintage army vehicles to understand the true gravity of the day.  It’s important to me that my girls understand why we wear red, white and blue; that there are people who have fought and are fighting for our country and we are honoring them, not just scarfing down delicious hot dogs and hamburgers poolside;)

On a less serious note and getting back to my week long Memorial Day Selects, as promised.  Today I am sharing my Mini selects with you.   I have three little girls, therefore my “Mini posts” automatically skew “girly”, however, there are few things cuter than a well dressed little boy, looking ever so pumped about what the celebration has to offer.  I will try to incorporate “boy looks” where I can in my Mini posts.  Patriotic pieces are not difficult to find right now, most online shopping destinations have a curated sections of red, white and blue pieces, here are some of my faves:

Rompers and jumpsuits

Janie and Jack almost never disappoints, although I’d much prefer to buy their clothes on sale than full price.  When ever I scroll through their collections, I almost always say to myself “I wish this came in my size”.  Clearly I am not alone in that sentiment as the brand launched a “Mommy and Me” collection last spring.  Ok, on to my selects:  1. The vibrant hue and gingham bows of this ponte romper from J&J make it a stand out!    2. My girls are super active so this soft knit, roll sleeved, striped romper would be perfect with navy sneaks. 3.   This J&J windowpane romper with a single shoulder bow is tres chic and is one of those I wish they made it in my size.  4.  How cute is this striped jumpsuit for the littler minis, seen here on Amber Venz’s, of LiketoKnow.it, daughter Birdie.    5. MiniBoden how I love thee,  this strappy frill romper screams summer and 6. I’m gaga for this denim, star print Jumpsuit.

Tops and Shorts

This oh so French, striped, ruffled top again from J&J (do you notice a theme yet;)) with white denim cut-offs and red Zara bow sneaks would be such playful and chic outfit.   I’d pair this J&J tiered, peplum top with any one of the four pairs of shorts pictured below.  Actually, come to think of it, you could put your cutie in any one of these three tops with any one of these four shorts and they would look darling.  For your reference: (clockwise from left) 1. J&J Striped Ruffle top 2. Crewcuts white jean shorts 3. J&J royal shorts with crochet embellished pockets 4. J&J navy twill shorts with button front pockets 5. J&J red scalloped twill shorts 5. Crewcuts slightly retro royal smocked top 6. J&J All American striped tiered top

Kicks

There are so many good shoe options for the Mini’s to add to their Memorial day attire.   I selected a few that I love:  1. My girls would die for these scalloped edge red wedges from the Gap, they love anything with the slightest heel  2. Simple H&M Red sandals with floral appliqué 3. Adorable Navy with white polka dot H&M elastic lace slip on sneaks 4. My fave, Red espadrilles with adjustable laces from Zara 6. for the boys (or girls) Navy Adidas collegiate sneakers 7. Red New Balance 24/7 sneakers

Pool Pieces

I am slightly obsessed with navy and white striped anything, a touch nautical and a touch French.   Which is why more than half of the next group of selects are navy and white striped prints.  There are loads of read white and blue options in the swim wear category.  I have to admit my favorite of this section is the Boys star swim trunks, I think it’s the background color that has me swooning.  From left to right and around clockwise 1. I love a cute flouncy one shoulder suit, this one from Crewcuts Factory is adorable 2. H&M hits the mark with this equally cute navy and white striped one piece, not to mention you can’t beat H&M’s prices 3. Cat and Jack’s rash guard – one piece combo with a peplum skirt, adorbs 4. this red and navy rash guard for the Mr. minis, is simple and classic 5. Here is another J&J winner 6. My favorite the J&J Star Swim trunks 7. J&J Gingham and eyelet one piece suit.

Boy oh Boy

Let’s hear it for the boys.  I try not to lament the fact that I don’t have a little dude to dress everyday.  My husband would say that he bares the burden of that missing piece in our puzzle, as I offer my opinion on his outfit choices more often than he would like;)  If I did have a Mr mini, I would have pulled the trigger on these pieces for the weekend.

1. I’m loving the tone red in this Short-sleeved shirt in cotton pique with a ribbed collar from H&M 2. nostalgic and cute this top gun graphic tee is rad 3. J&J has so many cute button down options for boys, I am loving this perfectly patriotic rolled cuff version  4. Jcrew Factory Boys’ Gramercy short in sunwashed oxford blue, pair of chambray shorts is a must for little boys and would go with all three of the tops,  5. these cotton-linen combo are a classic, comfy pull-on short from Crewcuts that’s built for all-day play.

You’re So Fancy

What would a Mini’s post from moi be without a handful of dresses.  Ever the “Fancy Nancys” my girls are gluttons for girly frocks.  1. this easy drop-waist cotton dress from Boden is great for everyday wear or ideal for your Memorial Day BBQs, it has the most precious bubble edging and pin-tucked detailing simple and sweet.  2. Also from Mini Boden, but a bit more formal this white dress with royal embroidery adorned with the sweetest bow detail 3. This Tucker and Tate racer-back tank dress from Nordstrom is the perfect playful dress for a party especially if you are celebrating MD somewhere nautical, p.s. if you haven’t checked out Tucker and Tate on Nordstrom.com…you are missing out 4. J&J makes this striped frock in “firework red” and navy…  5. I am admittedly not a fan of the “cold shoulder” trend, for some reason though, I find it perfectly cute on minis…this blue and white gingham open shoulder dress from H&M is $18…WHAAAT!!

Ok, that’s all for now folks…

xoxo

D

Memorial Day Selects: Day 1

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Lily Aldridge

Here’s the plan:  everyday this week I am going to share my selects for Memorial Day in reference to the topic I chose for that day.  Whether it be, Memorial Day fashion, parties/bbqs, minis, Mr. looks and gear, I’ll try to touch on it all.  Today, to kick off the themed week, I am going to start with my outfit picks for the weekend

Outfit 1

These Kate Spade gingham bow oversize pearl earrings are so cute with this simple scalloped edged one shoulder top, I’d wear with high waist navy sailor shorts, these amazing red, white and blue Gucci espadrille wedges and this perfect summer tote with bamboo handles.

 

Outfit 2

I am dying to buy a Petersyn top this summer, they are a little pricey at just under $300, but I love the detailing.  Low square neckline, smocking, peplum skirting and puffy sleeves, can you say vacation ready…  If I were to score this navy and white Petersyn top for the weekend, I’d wear with white cutoffs, red block heel sandals,  a royal Cult Gaia acrylic Ark bag,  how pretty is this David Yurman bracelet

 

Outfit 3

Who doesn’t love the perfect white tee, I’m convinced Petite Bateau makes the most perfect t-shirt.  One of my best friends gave me a turquoise PB t-shirt when we were in high-school.   I was surprised every time I put it on how much I loved the way it fit.   I now have many many white Petite Bateau t-shirtsThis MinkPink red, white and blue maxi skirt with buttons and a flounce, red block heels, red statement earrings and a Cult Gaia tortuous shell acrylic bag.

 

Outfit 4

Jcrew swimwear has long been a go to for flattering, affordable yet adorable suits.  This ’18 Spring Summer collection does not disappoint.  This tipped seersucker underwire(a must for me) shoulder-tie one-piece is so cute, with this effortless semi-sheer cotton Loup Charmant’s navy midi wrap skirt and Marc Jacobs gold flat slides from Zappos Luxury (I had no idea that Zappos carried high end footwear, score one for the online shoppers:)) add a touch of red with these super reasonable statement earrings and I see the perfect pool party outfit.  After a dip in the pool, cover-up in this lightweight navy embroidered beach cover-up…it’s on sale!!

 

Outfit 5

I am a huge fan of Perfect Moment Sports, I love my retro ski gear from the brand.   The brand has been creating ski gear for more than 20 years and is now offering high functioning active wear, with a retro flare.  Their clothing is similar to Aviator Nation, another one of my favorite brands.  This red, white and blue striped one-piece is calling my name, the grey marled sweat shirt with retro striped arm bands is a new item in my active wear wardrobe, with white cut-offs and summer staple sneaks navy Superga with my RWB adidas hat from PacSun!

 

You Better Werk…

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The power suit is back with a vengeance and I am loving it.  Is there anything more chic than a perfectly tailored all white suit for day or night…this Rachel Zoe sequin tuxedo has me drooling, it looks amazing on the style icon.  I am currently on the hunt for a fabulous new suit, knowing I’ll be taking more meetings for my new venture, my hope is to find a power suit that represents my style and speaks to my aspirations…high expectations, I know, but there are a lot of amazing options out there.  A few suit sets from Rachel Zoe’s current collection would fit the bill.    For example this denim suit, I mean, yes!  Gone are the days where denim on denim is a fashion no-no, in fact, it is très chic to find the perfect double denim look, RZ’s “take” is next level.  And how about this ever-so-pink metallic suit.  Perfect for a day to night look.  Olivia Palermo pictured below, pulls off the all denim suit flawlessly, but let’s be honest what does she not pull off flawlessly?!?

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Alice and Olivia’s pieces, similarly to Rachel Zoe’s are feminine, whimsical and sophisticated.   I’d pair the Dawn High Waisted Flare Pant with the Renee Side Slit Blazer, described as “expertly tailored blazer with a casual shawl neck and sexy side zips takes tradition and turns it on its head”.   This suit from Jcrew, inspired by the designer’s recent trip to Paris, is gorgeous in Oyster Gray.  It’s beautiful and can be dressed up or down, I love the double breasted look.

 

 

 

There are so many ways you can do a suit, they don’t have to be boring and frumpy.  I’m finding amazing color options, leg lengths and widths, it truly depends on your taste, there is something for everyone. Below, Gwyneth is wearing a simple white double breasted suit with strappy flat sandals, perfection.

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I am loving these pretty pink iterations from Revolve.  I am a huge fan of the brand Lovers and Friends.  How cute is this candy pink set with cropped pants.  Amanda Uprichard is another brand I’ve been loving, offering a similar looking pink suit.

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Tibi also has a great pink suiting option that comes in pink or lavender for a more affordable version check out this adorable River Island double breasted blazer and wide legged pants.

XO

D

Mother’s Day Gift Guide

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When asked numerous times over the last couple of weeks, somehow I had it in my head that I didn’t want any “things” for Mother’s Day this year… that a day spent cuddling would suffice.  While, I would thoroughly enjoy a day cuddling, it didn’t take long for me to come up with an extensive list of “things” I would love to receive, who was I kidding.
Every year on Mother’s day, my mother, without fail, says at least once “Mother’s Day should be everyday”, while I get her point, we wouldn’t have this very good excuse to drink mimosas and not have to do the dishes or laundry.   This brings me to my wish list / gift guide.  This year Mother’s Day happens to land on my Anniversary as well so the Mr. has double duty…pray for him;)
BEAUTY
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As I’ve mentioned, I have the hots for Charlotte Tilbury’s beauty collection, if money grew on trees I’d take one of everything.  I have quite a few products from her line at the top of my Mother’s Day wish list.  Pictured below in order from top right to left clockwise, here are my picks, 1. Hollywood Beauty Light Wand, 2. K.I.S.S.I.N.G. Lipstick in Bitch Perfect 3. Unisex Healthy Glow, Summer Tinted Moisturizer 4. Wonderglow, Instant Soft-focus beauty flash 5. Ole Henriksen Truth Serum 6. Tata Harper Purifying Cleanser 7. and for the completely unnecessary indulgence Oribe Bright Blonde Shampoo.

SLEEP

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Every momma needs her beauty sleep and while she’s at it she might as well be sleeping pretty.  I love pajama sets, they are so chic and it makes you look a little less disheveled in the morning, it might even give your children the impression you’ve got things under control.  My sleep wish list consists of the following: 1. Three J NYC, Jackie PJ Set, it’s on sale for under $75, such a steal 2. JCrew Gingham Pajama set at Nordstrom 3. How cute are the Honeydew Intimates, Starlight Terry Sweatshirt and shorts for cooler nights this summer 4. I love a silk pillowcase, I’d love to try this Drybar Slumber Party Silk Pillowcase.  5. I have a Slip Pillowcase but need to get a new one, how pretty is this petal pink color.  6. Yes please to the Kiehl’s Sleep Tight Overnight Kit…their nighttime products are tried and true favorites 7. Rejuvenating overnight Tanning Oil…I’m sold, need to try this product from Tan-Luxe

PRETTY THINGS 

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I love love accessories, my taste is fairly simple and classic, I love to bring an outfit together with accessories.  They are also, always a good choice for a gift as there is very little sizing required when buying accessories.   Here are a few that I currently have my eye on:  1. The Tiffany T collection is so beautiful, I love the Cutout White Ceramic and Gold T Cuff  2.  these Deepa Gurnani Sasha Teardrop earrings are so gorgeous 3. Cult Gaia’s bags are without question the it bag of the season, the Ark Mini Amber Clutch is just plain sick. 4.  The Eugenia Kim, sky blue Courtney Fedora is the only hat I need this summer 5. The Chloe Reese Marble Aviator 6. I love the Dorothea bracelet from Oh Joy,  it’s giving my candy bracelet vibes 7. I’ve been eyeing this Bario Neal linear ring for sometime. would be a perfect Mother’s Day / Anniversary combo gift.

HOME GOODS

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Finally, we’ve been working on our house here and there, we had a break through this past month as we prepped for a party at our house last weekend.  I am forever looking for pretty vignette pieces, home scents and lovely table wear.  Aerin Lauder for William Sonoma so perfectly suits my style, I could literally buy every piece.  1. We’be been in search of a great set of sconces for our eat in kitchen area, these Aerin Penz Sconces would be perfect,  2. I am a sucker for a good diffuser, I was given one from Antica Farmacista as a gift once and I am hooked, I would love to try the Cucumber Lotus Flower, 3. the Aerin basket weaved cachepot is so chic, 4. the scalloped edged dinner plates will be mine 5. back to the diffusers, I think Antica Farmacista this gift set would be amazing for a mother in law or a sister 6. we just installed a new custom table and I would love to have these stylish rattan place-mats

 

xo

D

MET and exceeded expectations…

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Kendall Jenner in Off-White

The fashions that done the MET Gala red carpet never ceases to amaze.  This year’s theme, “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination,” made for some seriously fierce looks.   I posted my favorites on my instagram feed this am.  Here I’ll attempt to source affordable ready to wear look-a-likes.   99% of the attendees could wear a paper bag and make it look stunning but these pieces are show stoppers!

Kendall Jenner, now considered a veteran of the Met Gala red carpet, looked super cool in an Off-White OTS jumpsuit.   The piece was fairly simple with a couple stand out details, sheer gloved sleeves and pant legs with trains!   Her hair and make-up was flawless.  She accessorized with diamond statement earnings and rings from Tiffany & Co..  In the side by side, I’ve pictured this white off the shoulder number from by the way, it’s so reasonable and adorable for summer, I think I have to have it.

The stunning and always elegant Lily Aldridgeis wearing a Ralph Lauren Collection dress with a metallic belt hand-twisted and hand-knotted and finished with Swarovski crystals. She finished her look with a Jimmy Choo clutch and shoes, and Bulgari jewelry.  The Privacy Please dress from Revolve is a super reasonable take on the stunning Ralph Lauren look:

Other honorable mentions:

It was Talita von Fürstenberg‘s birthday and she looked like the belle of the ball in a beautiful sky blue gown designed by her legendary grandmother.  I’m in love with Amanda Uprichard Amalia Gown for $334, the color is to die for, what a perfect dress for a summer wedding.

Gigi Hadid, always a favorite of mine.  I love her style, california cool with a touch of NYC sophistication.  She wore an incredible Versace with stain glass window-inspired detail, I can’t stop looking at pictures of the dress.  While there aren’t many “real life” versions of this dress…the Michelle Mason dress from Forward.com, bares a resemblance with it’s single sleeve and high slit.  I can see this being fabulous at a summer party in the Hamptons.

Gisele nails this event every year, I’m not sold on her look being on theme, but it was gorgeous none the less.  The eco friendly custom Versace gown was the perfect color yellow, this Likely one shoulder is giving me similar vibes.

Anna Wintour’s diamond rosary and “Cardinal Chanel” dress were show stoppers.  I can’t say that AW is often a muse for my style but in this case I was drooling.   The neckline reminded me a bit of Gigi’s dress from 2016’s Met Gala.  This Alexis Annabella mock neck sheath dress, has similar lines and texture.

Hailee Steinfeld is quickly becoming a fashion darling.  Her style has evolved a great deal over the last couple of years, while maintaining her girly, feminine, youthful core, she has become increasingly more glam and edgy.  Her look for last night’s Met Gala was fit for a fashion Queen, she wore a white Prabal Gurung gown, with crystal embellishments and a simple classic  “popesque” tiara.  This Versace V-neck ruched tulle slip dress on sale for $399 has similar crystal embellishments and lines.

That just about wraps up my red carpet review…What were your favorite looks?

xo

D

Weekend Reflections

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When I slow down and really think about it: each and everyday is made up of small moments that, when compiled,  amount to a pretty happy and fulfilling life.  Recently, I’ve needed to force myself to take the time appreciate these moments as I’ve felt life becoming overwhelming and even more so overbearing.  It’s easy to miss these moments, especially for a busy mom.  Mostly, for me, moments of gratification and happiness come from human interaction, they can, however, come from other experiences, those perfectly peaceful 10 minutes of meditation in the morning, the endorphin rush while running on a warm sunny day, an amazing meal, a good hair day,  music,  a beautifully arranged bunch of flowers from my husband, an “almost” perfectly executed party, just to name a few!

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This weekend was a particularly happy one for our family.  My oldest daughter received her First Holy Communion.   The celebration of this sacrament coincidentally landed on Cinco de Mayo and the Kentucky Derby.  The convergence of all of these events made for fabulously fun day.   The weather was perfect, all of the elements came together better than I could have imagined.  The planning started months ago, when I found this beautiful dress from Chasing Fireflies, she wore petal pink ballet slipper flats and a flower crown, she was a vision.   I wore this ivory Amanda Uprichard midi dress with a flounce, with gold strappy heels and simple gold jewelry.  My littlettes wore Oscar de la Renta and Janie and Jack.

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Amanda Uprichard Evalina Dress

 

 

My inspo for the party started with a gorgeous girly Cinco de Mayo celebration from It’s a Sparkly Life, it was love at first sight.  The idea of planning a party that revolved around Mexican food, using the vibrant colors associated with this fun ethnic holiday to create a stunning aesthetic was a pretty good formula for my party planning prowess.

I had my incredible baker create a very similar cake to the one pictured here, ours had a beautiful cross instead of the 3D flower on top of this one.  We served mint juleps in copper mugs like these from William Sonoma and margaritas along side food from one of my very favorite restaurants, Bartaco.

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It’s A Sparkly Life

I ordered this fun balloon garland from Etsy along with this white Mexican wedding banner.   We watched the Derby and had horse on a stick races in the back yard with the kiddos.  To finish off the day we roasted S’mores.   This weekend provided me with many of those moments and people that highlight how wonderful life is when you are taking the time to notice.

xo

D

 

Fresh cuts

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When done well, a fresh cut can be life altering…ok, so I am, admittedly dramatic about my hair.  A bad haircut or color can be equally life altering in the opposite way.   I’ve driven home from the hair salon any number of times in full blown hysterics.  I’ve had my fair share of hair nightmares and have finally come to terms with the fact that cutting corners with it comes to hair is futile.  My colorist is an angel from blonde heaven, I am a little less concerned about who cuts my hair as long as they do a decent job, a benefit of having long layered hair.   Gigi Hadid’s volume combined with Annabelle Wallis’ stunning blonde tone are in my opinion a receipt for hair perfection.  The closest I’ve come to having ahhhmazing hair was while (and just after) I was pregnant, those days are long since over, so I’ve had to find other ways of achieving my ideal hair.

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When I was getting married an amazing colorist in NYC was recommended to me, I started seeing him about a year before my wedding.  We decided, in order to get the volume and length I wanted for my wedding, I should use extensions.  They were gorgeous, not the cheap looking extensions people use these days.  We went to a warehouse in the fashion district of Manhattan with aisles and aisles of real hair.  We bought the hair, he cut it for the perfect length, matched it to my color and he glued them in on my wedding day, voila my wedding day weave was on point.   Post wedding and pregnancies, I’ve had to work hard for good hair.  I’ve tried a number of supplements, right now I am taking Viviscal, it seems to be working fairly well.  I also use Olaplex No3  conditioner in the shower 2x a week and every time I wash or condition my hair I use Kerastase Initialiste .   I try to wash my hair as little as possible during the week, instead I use dry shampoo and wand my hair, which is probably counter productive to not washing it.  As I’ve mentioned before my favorite dry shampoo is Bastiste ,  I use texturizing spray on the weekends, my faves are Oribe and Drybar Triple Sec, Big Sexy Hair Powerplay.

My hair is an on going trial and error type of project.  I will continue to keep you updated as I navigate through products and techniques.  What are your favorite products for healthy voluminous hair?

 

xoxo

D

Monday Musings

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Weekday mornings, can feel so daunting, never like those commercials or movies where the children come bounding into the kitchen already dressed, sit down gratefully to a table filled with gorgeous, prepared food, get up (when finished) to put their dishes in the sink and fill their own backpacks.  Nope, not in my house, I will save you a wince and not attempt to paint a picture of our dysfunctional mornings.   Don’t get me wrong my kids are very happy little humans, they love their Eggo waffles and scrambled eggs, I would never give up their mid-kitchen dance parties for anything.  That said, getting them out the door on time for school is truly a challenge!  For now, we am working with what we’ve got, trying to bring some semblance of organization and calm to our chaotic little house.  Eventually, I would like to land somewhere a little closer to the phony, perfectly lit kitchen with everything in place and grateful smiling faces kissing me on the cheek as they bound out the door…I do believe in miracles.

To be fair, my own preparedness, without a doubt, weighs into the equation.  I’ve tried a number of tactics, some work, some do NOT.  I love gleaning ideas from other moms, although, in my opinion, no single formula works equally well for every family.  Here are a few things I’ve tried to help me get to a calmer more organized and punctual place everyday:

Meditation:

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As I’ve mentioned before, I’ve seen positive results in my own psyche with the use of meditation, of the apps I’ve tried and there are quite a few out there, Headspace was the most user friendly.  I’d be lying if I said it’s as simple as getting up every morning and doing it, I’ve had to force myself to have a consistent practice, which is really the only way you see results.  My vision for the perfect setting would be in a gorgeous sun-porch or 4 season room, like this stunning vaulted design,  that is drenched in sunlight, I’m sitting on a Tulum-esque towel and I’m one with my practice!   This room is beyond dreamy from The Lily Pad Cottage:

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Outfit planning (the night before):

I’ve found that picking out my own clothes, as well as my girl’s outfits the night before is clutch.  Now that my girls are getting a little older and they each have their own style my “picks” are often met with resistance.   Recently, I took the kids to JCrew – Crewcuts for a “shopping spree” as they had been given gift certificates.  They each picked outfits that fit their unique style, despite the chaos of taking three girls under 10 shopping, it showed them the potential of independence with regard to getting dressed.

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My oldest snagged these shorts in neon flame and paired it with this adorable flutter sleeved t-shirt and a similar long sleeve version, she also bought a pair of mesh tretorn sneaks.   My middle child who hits all the markers for a sterotypical middle childed, insisted on these metallic gold leggings, paired with this emoji t-shirt and accessorized with an emoji necklace and the matching coin purse, finishing her look with neon New Balance sneaks.  My 5 year old, “the baby”, who’s birthday we were celebrating, chose the same shorts as her older sister but chose this adorable petal pink peplum t-shirt to go with it.  For her second outfit, I know…yeesh, it was her birthday but seriously, she had to have the silver metallic leggings, this sequined heart t-shirt to match and these sparkly sneaks.

 

Lunches

Packing lunches the night before is always a solid time saver, we love these bento boxes from Pottery Barn.   I am trying to get into the habit of washing and bagging fruit as soon as I get home from the grocery store, these reusable baggies are awesome.

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Dry Shampoo is the holy grail to my morning.  Most mornings it is as close as I get to clean hair, I actually love the way my hair looks a little dirty with Bastise Dry Shampoo (the best and I’ve tried every dry shampoo that has ever crossed my path:)) it adds the perfect amount of much needed volume.  I have my eye on this curling iron, it automatically grabs your hair and curls it perfectly with out it snagging like other automatic wands.

Ok, that is all for now.  If you have any tried and true morning time savers, I am all ears.

xoxo

D