Happy, happy birthday to me! After
dreading excitedly awaiting this day, it's finally here: I am 30! I don't feel any older, however, I do feel a bit more put together and productive. Not sure if its age or the fact that I'm now juggling a newborn, but I'm willing to go with it either way. An official "Mommy on-the-go", I need to be able to get around sans 4 inch heels. I love the slight wedge on these sandals and the fact that the metallic pieces mimic the piping on this smoking hot Coral dress; perfect for showing off my curves. Including additional bright pieces makes this look birthday worthy: the neon bag and candy-like earrings are so fun, yet a grown up take on the current trend. Add my favorite orange/red lipstick to top it off and I'm ready for the best that's yet to come. Eventually, I'll have a proper night out to celebrate, but for now I'm content to live vicariously through my ideal birthday suit of bright pops of color and a cupcake with sprinkles.
Thursday, July 19
Friday, June 15
Don't forget your daddy for Father's Day this weekend! My dad kind of has a split personality. On the surface he's very much a Southern gentleman. Always perfectly pressed in khakis and loafers [as a matter of fact, he purchases a pair of loafers identical to these every.single.year]. Underneath all of that prep, though, is a man that rocks! He has an iPod full of rock-and-roll and loves to crank it up full blast. Lynard Skynard, the Allman Brothers and the Rolling Stones are some of his favorites. True story: he bought me Keith Richards' book for Christmas. Once opened, he promptly stole it and read it cover to cover. I think we all know what he wants to be when he grows up! So to play to his dueling halves, a gift guide for dear ol' dad.
Wednesday, June 6
Gold is my friend! Rare is the day that I step out of the house without gilding myself to some extent. My favorite accessories are either chunky, stackable or layered gold pieces not to mention my gold mirrored aviators to keep all of that shine out of my eyes. I fiercely believe that you should have something sparkly on your person at all times, so here I am to help you stay golden!
I can't deal with the awesomeness that is this collar from Alexis Bittar and the mother-of-pearl buttons put it over the top! Full disclosure: though it has been shown in print as recently as this month, I can't find it on the designer's site so I'm not quite sure if it's still available. However, it stays on my wish list, so on the inspiration board it goes.
The easiest way to incorporate some gold into your wardrobe would be make-up. I've done gold nails [fabulous!], but must try the gold eye-liner trend; It will look so perfect with slightly sun-kissed skin this summer. If you'd rather baby step your way into bling, why not add some sparkle to your smart phone? I love this graphic diagonal striped iPhone case from Kate Spade.
Last, but not least, my absolute favorite piece on this board is the champagne and 24 karat gold leaf lollipop. Seriously. What could possibly be more posh than that? These lollis would be amazing as a party favor. How about you? What's your favorite way to wear gold?
Friday, June 1
I am so, so excited to have a date night with Parker this weekend. He's been traveling for work all week, so I"m ready for some one-on-one time and a delicious, sparkling mocktail. We consider ourselves to be food-centric folks and our dates usually consist of a dinner out. In Atlanta, we had a running list of beloved restaurants and must-trys, but since we've moved to Minnesota, we've had a really hard time finding our dining niche. That changes now! I finally have a list to work off of and for the next six weeks, or until Baby Boy decides to arrive, we're going to visit one or two [some are lunch spots] a week. But enough of that. Let's get dressed, shall we?
Even though it's June 1, it's still a little chilly in the evenings and light jackets are an essential here in Minnesota. To say that I am obsessed with this Ikat print in a drapey silk would be a vast understatement. Super luxurious and bright enough to put me in a summery mood, it's truly a must have. The maternity stores haven't jumped on the colored denim bandwagon, so that's one trend I've really missed this season. If I didn't have a beach ball belly, I would totally take advantage of these muted coral jeans from J.Crew. As for accessories, check out this statement necklace. Layered pewter and gold feathered bib? Yes, please! Add a comfy shoe and cute clutch to pull in the muted mustard from the jacket and top off with a light gloss for your smoochable lips. Lady, you're ready for a hot night out on the town.
Thursday, May 31
Espadrilles are my absolute favorite. They go with everything from shorts to maxi dresses and I love this season's colorful patterns and fabrics. Even better? These metallic mini wedges from Me Too. I.want.them.now! Also on my must-buy list are these Soludos for J.Crew. A steal at USD 34.50, I just can't decide between the lemon zest or bright spearmint.
Dress them up or dress them down, just make sure you indulge in this Summer staple. How about you; are you having a Summer love affair with the espadrille?
No. 1; No. 2; No. 3; No. 4; No. 5; No. 6
Saturday, May 26
Happy Memorial Day weekend, y'all! While I'm [what feels like] a billion miles from a beach, up here in Minnesota we have 10,000 lakes to choose from for some fun in the sun. So, Parker and I will make like the natives and give the fresh water a try. Memorial Day usually marks the unofficial start of the warmest weather, so I chose some delightfully citrusy pieces to get you ready for some hot fun in the Summertime.
I'm really into the one-piece this season, so I chose a lovely lemon seersucker tank from J.Crew. The vertical stripes are slimming and the underwire top gives support and the halter ties give flexiblity for tan lines or no. Add this huge floppy hat to keep the sun off your face, neck and chest.
If you're anything like me, my hair goes UP in the hot weather. These hairbands look cute in your hair, yes, but they could pass as bracelets as well. Who doesn't love a muli-tasking accessory? Speaking of mult-tasking, you can take this tote from sea to shore for sure. The poms and tassels are too cute!
I hope y'all are having a wonderful long weekend, but please don't forget to thank a serviceman or woman for the sacrifices they make serving our country. That's what Memorial Day is all about, after all.
Thursday, May 24
Cat eye sunglasses instantly conjure up images of summertime for me. In my mind, I have an image of a girl in a convertible, wind whipping the scarf around her hair, cruising around in the bright sunshine. Needless to say, I love that the cat eye is a summer trend for 2012. I like to keep it classic in black or tortoise, but I'm also drawn to these fancy blue panther and grey Dior glasses. Love the trend but don't want to spend a ton of cash? Check out this ladylike pair found at Target; they're a steal at $12.99!
How about you? Will you be rocking the retro shades this summer?
Tuesday, May 15
I love, love this workshop shoot produced by Simply Bloom Photography in the desert of Las Vegas. Styled by the lovely Lauren Grove, Editor of Every Last Detail, I was happy to comply with her request for a hairpiece for the bride. Lauren's inspiration for the shoot was fringe and texture; pretty much two of my favorite things in life. The wedding gown had rows and rows of ruffles, so I wanted to create something simple that would mimic the texture in the gown.The sweet Sophie hairpiece has layers of silk organza and tulle with raw, unrefined edges. I think it worked perfectly! Check out the rest of this shoot on Every Last Detail [an awesome source for of inspiration and daily dose of reality for all of you engaged gals out there] including an unbelievable hand layered and fringed tissue runner that will have you swooning for sure.
Saturday, May 5
It's Derby Day and y'all know what that means: horses and hats and bourbon, oh my! Now don't go clutching your pearls because my julep isn't shown in a silver cup. It's perfectly acceptable to serve it in an old fashioned glass, as well. Hopefully, this super easy recipe will get you in a "horsey" mood. If not, well, bless your heart and head back north. Cheers to a great race day!
Mint Julep [serves one]
1/2 oz. superfine sugar
1 oz. hot water
6 mint leaves, plus one mint sprig [or more to taste]
2 oz. bourbon
Dissolve the sugar in the hot water to make a simple syrup. Once room temperature, add syrup and the mint leaves to an old fashioned glass or julep cup. Lightly press the leaves with a spoon to release their oil. Add the bourbon, fill the glass with cracked ice and stir. Garnish with the mint sprig and a jaunty short straw and serve.
Friday, May 4
It's almost here! The 138th Run for the Roses will be held tomorrow afternoon and I couldn't be more thrilled. I do love a good horse race, but more importantly, I love to see what everyone's wearing. While I won't be in attendance, I did have fun putting together my faux outfit. Can I tell you a secret? This dress is technically a bridesmaid dress. Isn't it so fun? I love layering the shades of lavendar with the shoes and lipstick and this fun clutch is just big enough for a flask of Kentucky's finest; Four Roses, perhaps? Because of the ruffley details on the dress, just add a statement cuff to complete the outfit. Whatever your plans may be for tomorrow, don't forget your hat dahling!
Thursday, May 3
I'm pretty sure the most important element of a Derby outfit is the hat and I'm pretty sure I'm in lust with all six of these amazing creations. From ribbons to feathers, these millinery confections are a delight to the eye not to mention commanding of attention. You won't blend into the infield crowd! I'm partial to the minimalist widebrim. What's your favorite?
Nos. 1 through 6 may be found at Love Hats.
Wednesday, May 2
It's almost time for Derby Day and do I have a sweet treat for you! Combining some of the South's best ingredients, these chocolate covered candies are sure to please any lady or gentleman who can hold their liquor. Just a warning, though: these sweets get stronger the longer they sit so no sampling from the kiddos. Other than that, eat up y'all!
Derby Bourbon Balls
1 cup chopped Pecans
5 tablespoons Kentucky bourbon [Maker's Mark or similar]
1/2 cup sweet butter, softened
1 [16 ounce] package confectioners' sugar
18 ounces semisweet chocolate
Place the nuts in a sealable jar. Pour bourbon over pecans, seal and allow to soak overnight. Mix the butter and sugar; fold in the soaked pecans and mix to the consistency of cookie dough. Form into 3/4 to 1 inch balls and refridgerate overnight [if in a hurry, freeze for an hour or two]. Line tray with waxed paper. Melt the chocolate in the top of a double boiler over just simmering water, stirring frequently and scraping with a spatula to prevent scorching. Roll the balls in the melted chocolate to coat and arrange on the prepared tray. Refridgerate until serving.
Tuesday, May 1
My own personal Mama does not shy away from color. No, ma'am! The brighter and shinier, the better, but always in good taste. That inspired me to create this fun gift guide for my mom or maybe yours.
Aren't these sunny striped sunglasses the most fun? I'll definitely be getting a phone call from my mom about those. Don't live nearby your mom? Make facetime brighter with this pretty iPhone case. The Murfee is the perfect springtime scarf. I love the cute anchor pattern in neutral Navy. Take your summer staple poolside with these Navajo flops. They're jellies! I adore the summery colors in this polish set. A new mani color for each week of the month.
The gang's all here: Tory, Lilly, Kate and Jack and nothing listed will totally break the bank [Okay, maybe No.1. I'm giving you the side-eye, Dior]. So, pop open the brut rose [that's fancypants for pink champagne] and raise a glass to to the lady who raised you: Mama.
Y'all don't forget, now; Mother's Day is May 13th.
No.1; No.2 ; No.3 ; No.4; No.5; No.6
Saturday, April 28
Sip of Southern is back, y'all! Although I can't imbibe until the biscuit finishes baking, I do have a very enthusiastic taste tester in Mr. Sizemore. Therefore, expect this series to be pretty bourbon heavy for the next few weeks. First up: The Old Fashioned.
The Old Fashioned is thought to have originated at the Pendennis Club, a gentleman's establishment in Louisville, Kentucky. Invented by a bartender in the club, it made it's way to New York City and was popularized at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel bar.
2 oz Kentucky bourbon
2 dashes Angostura bitters
One sugar cube
Tools: muddler, barspoon
Glass: old fashioned
On a cocktail napkin, shake 2 dashes of bitters onto sugar cube. Add bitter soaked cube and orange peel to glass and muddle. Pour bourbon and stir. Add ice cubes and stir again.
Friday, April 27
I'm gearing up for a weekend of shopping! Granted, it's a weekend of babyfriend shopping, but nevertheless, money will be spent. When I hit the shops I like to dress comfortably, but appropriately. I always like to look my best because who wants to try on clothes without finished hair and makeup? I never shop in heels and I try to wear something comfortable and easy to slip in and out of quickly. The same goes for accessories; don't over accessorize to cut down on changing time.
On to the outfit! I'm pretty obsessed with all of these pieces. The blouse is super cool and comfy; I love the print and small pops of color. It pairs well with these preppy scalloped shorts in classic khaki. A shoulder or crossbody bag is ideal for a marathon spree. It frees up your arms to carry all of your purchases. This faux leather bag is perfect in Coral. Just add some snakeskin print flats with gold stud accents, funky cuff, simple studs and you're set to shop! Happy Weekend, y'all!
Happy Jazz Fest, folks! Today begins the New Orleans Jazz Fest which will be going on in the Crescent City until May 6th. If you're unable to make it down to the Big Easy, press play for Rebirth Brass Band. Guaranteed to put you in a good mood!
Thursday, April 26
Since my sweet baby boy won't be born in the South [she says as she clutches her pearls], I really wanted to create a nursery space not only to make me feel at home, but to surround him with the best the summer coast has to offer. Mr. Sizemore and I are marsh people. We both adore the smell of plough mud and sea grass and love to look out on the Intracoastal Waterway. Not one for baby-ish decor, I referenced my love of the marshland, as well as to the style of a sun kissed, Southern gentleman, for my inspiration. The color palette was established from Madras print and includes navy, red, white, mustard, emerald and touches of wood.
Wednesday, April 25
Diamonds may be a girl's best friend, but not all girls want a traditional diamond engagement ring. Pretty solitaires set in gold or platinum are lovely and will always be in style. If, however, you prefer your engagement ring to reflect your personal taste [something of the utmost importance to me when Mr. Sizemore and I were selecting my engagement ring], then look no further than these stunners for your inspiration. I am dying over the Monique Pean champagne trillion cut solitaire set in rose gold; What an inspired take on tradition. For all of you Earth Mamas out there, check out the raw diamonds from Todd Reed. Very cool and very sustainable. Lastly, the gorgeous pink tourmaline from Cathy Waterman is super romantic. Who could ever say "no" to that?
Thursday, March 1
Wednesday, February 15
I was delighted to see today that the editorial images from the Chaviano Couture lookbook shoot were published in the recent issue of Utterly Engaged Magazine. The images begin on page 74 and run to page 93. I think my favorite from the spread is on page 90 and 91. The drama of the dress and the veil (yards and yards of tulle!) was so unbelievable in person, I'm thrilled it translated to print. What's your favorite?
Photography: Harwell Photography / Florals: Amy Osaba / Calligraphy: MMInk / Hair: Shornell McNeal / Makeup: Mara Zal / Model: Alex Lahey
Tuesday, February 14
Won't you tell me your name?
Hey, Sweet Potato! I feel you rolling around in my belly. According to my baby book, you can hear me, so will you cut your mama some slack and just tell me what you want to be called for the rest of your life? I'm sure I'm not the only expectant parent that agonizes over naming their baby. Choosing a name for your child is a big deal! Parker and I have researched and made lists and compared notes and we still can't seem to settle on a moniker for our little one.
We do find out on Monday if we are having a he-baby or a she-baby, so hopefully that will help, and I'm trying to stay positive! I've actually had dreams (nightmares?) where I go into labor and we haven't chosen a name. Not even so much as narrowed it down! I think I need a hobby. Am I alone in the world or did anyone else out there have issues/discussions/need therapy over naming their child?
I was so happy for my dear friend Annette to have her new collection sneak peeked on the Southern Weddings blog yesterday. It was such an honor to style her 2012 lookbook and I'm amazed at the thought and detail that went into this collection, at once structured and etheral. In additon to the pretty dresses and accessories shown here, Chaviano Couture provides custom work as well. Who wouldn't want a one of a kind gown? Check out the promo for the 2012 collection and learn more about Chaviano Couture.
Images: Harwell Photography
Images: Harwell Photography