Current State of the Union 9.30.16

Friday, September 30

ICYMI: I have (& adore!) the Paper Source Foil Letterpress Desk Calendar <-- 2017

Currently / life:
+ Kinda just can't believe we're at the end of another month! September whizzed by, probably because I've spent most of the month looking forward to TODAY- after work, a European adventure awaits!
+ Things have been mostly chill, but not without some excitement: Carina took me to NYC for my birthday, and around here, I wrapped up the Head to Toe Remix Series with Elana, and started a new series that I've had a blast writing: Bridesmaid 101 (Now What? / The Bachelorette Party.) The very end of this month has marked the kick-off to Fall fashion, I just debuted what I think will be my shoe of the season! Up until now, it's been balmy, and I've shared a casual office outfit, my new Topshop shorts, and a Marimekko skirt I got via Poshmark swap!
+ Notably, in an attempt to eat healthier and generally be more disciplined, I did somewhat of a cleanse the first half of this month (half:30, if you will.) It didn't last long :) but there was a good couple weeks where I was really thinking about what (and how much) I was eating. It was great. A few examples of my healthy eating project, with help from a way better cook than me!
Currently / pop culture: 
+ I kicked off the month at Nashville's free concert series, Live on the Green, where I saw a couple long-time favorites: Band of Horses and Young the Giant (they've released a new album, Home of the Strange.) Also enjoyed BØRNS who is -surprise- not a dreamy British rockstar, he's from Michigan.
+ I've spent more of my time lately enjoying Spotify's custom playlists, favorites include: the weekly changing #ThrowbackThursday, Evening Chill for my blogging nights, and Indie Pop for every other time.
+ I've only been watching random TV like Vice-Principals (Danny McBride) and Spy (ft. girl crush Rose Byrne.) 

*psst- what do Celine Dion, The Beach Boys, and Ariana Grande have in common? They're all in my recently played artists on Spotify! Listen to what I'm listening to!*
Currently / shopping: armed with my Fall wishlist, I shopped (& swapped!) a lot this month. Here's a sampling.
+ Drawstring pants are the future, and I bought two (!) pairs this month! This black pair is from Old Navy, and I will be wearing them for the next week straight, also picked up a striped pair from H&M that I'm obsessed with.
+ This marled gray H&M sweater is simple, but I think it'll become a staple! It's in my packing capsule as well.
+ I've mentioned my Zara pointed loafers as MY shoe for the season, but the lace-up flat is definitely THE shoe of the season. I ordered this pair from Target, and they should arrive tomorrow!
+ I picked up these gorgeous brocade shorts at Topshop in NYC & am dreaming about wearing them again in Paris.
+ I had some fantastic luck swapping for items on Poshmark this month. Most notably, these J.Crew Factory Frankie pants to replace my ill-fitting olive pants that I wear frequently, anyway! These are SO comfy and fit me perfectly!

Currently / Nashville: as is tradition, I'm sharing one new-to-me spot and one classic
+ Lockeland Table has one of the best Happy Hours in town, and certainly in my neighborhood. Their HH deals include a full specialty cocktail menu (the house punch right now is a Fall delight) and a $6 pizza made in their very own brick oven. Such a great local spot!
+ It took me years before I made it to Hattie B's (I just assumed I wasn't into hot chicken!), so I won't hold it against you if you haven't been yet. This is a place I always recommend to visitors, hot chicken being the one dish that is distinctly "Nashville." And oh it does not disappoint. I stick to the "hot" and like to dip it in their ranch and pimento mac & cheese. Pro tip: call in advance to order, and skip the line!
Currently / beauty: I'll keep this short, since I just did a beauty post on my daily make-up routine.
+ My boss/work biffy Christine recently bequeathed to me the contents of a thorough cosmetics clean-up, so I got a nice batch of new lip products. My favorite so far is this lipstick by Wet n Wild in Purty Persimmon
+ I'm so alien to hair products that after using this serum & noticing a difference in my hair texture, I had to stop and think about what I'd done! I got this via ipsy, and ran a dollop through my hair right out of the shower. Easy!
+ Though I tried on and contemplated a very vampy dark (MAC Smoked Purple) while in NYC, I opted for an old favorite that I had lost instead: Venom by Urban Decay. Boy oh boy I love this lipstick and shade.

*I get my best beauty finds via ipsy & BirchboxSubscribe for $10/month, learn more here.*

Currently / on the nightstand: technically, East of Eden is still on my nightstand... 
+ I just finished One Day (given to me by Carina.) The concept is so neat- the story of two people told across twenty years, each chapter checking in with them on the same day of the year. It was recently made into a movie starring Anne Hathaway and Jim Sturgess. Recommend!
+ I'm excited to have some time to READ during my upcoming travels! I've checked out and downloaded several books onto my Kindle: The Namesake, The Secret History, China Dolls, Wild, Along the Infinite Sea, A Spool of Blue Thread, and The Swans of Fifth Avenue. Read any of those? Tell me which one to start first!
Share the latest goodies in your life with me, below! View all my Current States right here

Ok, I'm off! Hoping to have a couple posts go up next week (we'll see if those come together in time...) either way, in the meantime, keep up with my adventures on Instagram and Twitter (personal/blog.) See ya on the internet!

Fox in the Henhouse

Wednesday, September 28

| earrings: gift | lipstick: Venom by Urban Decay | button-up: Old Navy via Poshmark swap | jeans: Old Navy |           | loafers: Zara {similar} | watch: c/o JORD |

I'm officially done with my Summer '16 outfit posts, and onto Fall fashion (check that label! Did you notice I have all my outfit posts sorted by season? Summer / Fall / Spring / Winter) It really is the most perfect timing, since this morning was in the 50's and I turned my heat on in my car for the first time! Just for a second because it got too warm. But still! 

I am feeling SO good about my style this Fall and pretty good about life in general (priorities, right?) Probably because I've recently done a lot a little shopping (hi Mom!) But also because I finally did what I've heard about forever and made a shopping list for the season. I outlined it around what (items/colors/fabrics) I was most excited to wear, and went from there! I have to say, though not every item I've acquired is strictly on the list, it has been immensely helpful. 

So about this outfit: you can barely tell that these are tiny FOX FACES covering my button-up! How cute is that?! You already know that I'm capital-Obsessed with Poshmark, but lately I've gotten into swapping through the app. As long as you do it "through Poshmark" (getting the shipping label & tracking) I vouch for it 100%. I got this button-up in a trade for a dress I hadn't been able to sell! 

I picked up these loafers while in NYC, and I'm convinced, they're going to be my shoe of the season.

I've inadvertently made somewhat of a Fall capsule with my new items (+ items I already have that I want to pair them with.) This has been huge in helping me pack for my trip- yes, I'm really, finally going to Europe on Friday [Oktoberfest & Paris via London are the plans!] I've been an absolute maniac planning my packing for this trip, and I'm excited to share the capsule/packing list with you all eventually. 

Hope you are having a lovely, Autumnal week!

Gordmans + e.l.f. cosmetics

Monday, September 26

I was excited when Gordmans reached out to me about creating a look using e.l.f. cosmetics! I've been a fan of e.l.f. products for years; they are affordable and accessible, and always on the cutting edge of cosmetic trends. Several of these products were already in my daily make-up routine! I was excited to try out a couple new products, and decided to go with a look that was overall very natural, with a bold lip (basically how I do my make-up for work every single day!)

These products are available at Gordmans now!
e.l.f. products used: 
I started off with the Perfect Blend Concealer in Apricot Beige. I like to use it under my eyes, on my eyelids as a primer, and of course over any blemishes. Apricot Beige is the perfect shade for me, and this blends so easily! 
Next up, and most important: eyebrows! I may leave the house without mascara, but never with neglected brows. The Eyebrow Kit in Medium is my current choice for brows, because it's the ultimate combination of wax + powder. I like to use a little wax to outline (or, "anchor") the inner corners of my brows, and powder throughout. 
Blush might be my second favorite beauty product, because who doesn't like flushed, glowing cheeks? The Blush Palette in Dark has four shades, for your every mood or occasion (so great for traveling!) I went with a peachy pink for the office, but can't wait to break out the hot pink for a night out! 
I don't wear much eye make-up on a typical day, but mascara is a must. e.l.f. has several fantastic affordable options, I'm wearing the Lengthening and Defining here (currently sold out at, but check out the equivalent Essential Volumizing option. 
And finally- lip color. I'll say it, I'm a bit lip color obsessed. It's the single easiest way for me to feel put together and fabulous, even on a Tuesday! I've owned a couple of these lipsticks in the past, the "pen" shape makes for easy, smooth application, and the color stays on great! 
The 4 Piece Matte Lipstick set (such a steal!) has four gorgeous shades: Berry Sorbet (which I'm wearing here), Rich Red, Dash of Pink, and Cranberry.

And because a before & after is the best part of any tutorial...Gordmanself1
Big thanks to Adriane Smith Creative for these photos!

I hesitate to call this a "tutorial" because the look is quite simple, but this is a great representation of my daily make-up routine (and something you can easily try at home!)

You can find all of the products used in today's post at a Gordmans near you (or

Are you a fan of e.l.f. cosmetics? What does your daily make-up routine look like? Share below!

I was given these products by Gordmans and compensated for my review, but all opinions are my own (and I actually like e.l.f. products!) 

Bridesmaid 101: the Bachelorette Party!

Friday, September 23

**Before I start this post, I just want to say that although my tone may come across as whiny sometimes, I genuinely love to death every girl I’ve been a bridesmaid for, and would do this all again, tomorrow.**

Oh, bachelorette parties. They’ve become such a thing, haven’t they? Let’s begin by setting the precedent that your bachelorette party has no effect on your marriage! The most important thing is that your bride-to-be feels celebrated, in her own special way.

+ My first pieces of advice is DO NOT HAVE YOUR BACHELORETTE PARTY IN NASHVILLE. I’m kinda joking…but just keep it classy, ok ladies?

+ First up: So you’re not the Maid of Honor. Should you even care? In a word- yes. I’ve been in a few situations where: there is no Maid of Honor, the MoH lives far away, the MoH is a very pregnant older sister, etc. etc. Put yourself in the bride’s shoes, saddle up, and secure yourself that “best friend of all time” spot by blowing her away!

+ If you’re not the Maid of Honor and she reaches out about the Bach, for the love, please be attentive and respond and help her in any way you can.

+ Have an honest conversation with your bride. What does she want the most? A chill, cabin or beach weekend away is totally cool! A hybrid with one night out is cool. A long-weekend rager in Vegas is also cool (and I’m still waiting for my invite to that one, btw.)

+ That being said- I think in 4/4 bachelorette parties I’ve been involved in planning, the bride-to-be has specifically requested nothing trashy at all, to which I say “She doesn’t know WHAT SHE WANTS!” And factor in that the surprise and delight and general high of being trapped in a house with 10 girls will make some shenanigans a-ok. :) Cake is cake.

+ Be sure and confirm the guest list with the bride, including any random additions that aren’t bridesmaids (sisters of the groom, cousins, etc.)

+ Send out a feeler email to that crew just as soon as you can. Figure out what you want and don’t want to spend money on. Budget is THE most important thing to nail down. Nothing is worse than booking an amazing house in Santa Barbara, only to learn that the group has a budget of $0. Also- you may find it easier to just make the plans and invite people, without taking input.

+ I take it back: THEME is the most important thing to nail down, non-negotiable. A theme gives you your hashtag, décor & swag, & just makes it fun. Themes I’ve participated in: wild/animal print, luau, firefighter, nautical.

+ Make Google docs your best friend! At the very least, start an itinerary, budget, and décor sheet, and delegate the heck out of it. Once again, not everyone is a planner, but it is reasonable for you to assign tasks (everyone brings a snack & drink to share, someone is in charge of the banner, someone is in charge of coordinating the activity, etc.) ETA: There is also an app called Splitwise that is GENIUS for bachelorette parties!

+ Having swag is great, but I don’t think t-shirts are your best bet. There are several simpler items that are just as cute, so much easier, and cheaper than a t-shirt that will probably never be worn again (koozies! sunglasses! tumbler cups!) I think it’s most important that the bride has fun things to wear for every activity (this is the time to get your best friend to wear that tiny sparkly cowboy hat like you’ve always dreamed of!)

+ Airb&b. Use it! Staying in a house is the most fun and cost effective option for a big group. Book this as early as you possibly can, and while some hosts are strictly against parties, I think it’s generally worth it to send a message explaining your party (“We are all young professionals that will mostly be on the town and I am SUPER responsible.”)

+ Hashtag. This is seriously the easiest thing you can do to delight your bride and stay on theme. The more creative, the better; bonus points for incorporating their new last name! Encourage Demand that the party guests use the hashtag as MUCH as possible. (Some ideas: #AmandaGoesWilder, #JenaesLastLuau, #MrsSuarezEnFuego, #AndreasFinalFiesta, #FutureMrsPappu.)

+ In my opinion, a perfect bachelorette party is a mix of plans and un-plans. You’re going to have a lot of personalities, and a lot of girls getting ready. Make sure you schedule downtime to craft, or chill, or nap. Each day really only needs one big planned activity.

+ I could write an entire post on saving vs. splurging for a Bachelorette party. Just know that even if you are traveling, there are so many inexpensive options for activities, décor, and food. You do NOT have to max your credit card to have a successful Bachelorette party.

+ On that note…go to Dollar Tree. This is the best place to get super cheap party supplies in any color palette. They also have wonderful kitschy stuff for decorations (I’m waiting for the day that I can plan a Christmas themed bachelorette party) and the best part is it’s all one dollar! Holllla

+ Again on that green subject…be prepared to spend money and not get it back. In a perfect world, everyone wants to split things fair and square, but in reality, you’re planning the party, and you WILL end up spending your own money on things. It’s best to go into the weekend knowing that and factoring that into your wedding gift. Addendum A to this point is: when it comes to things like paying for the accommodations, invoicing on Venmo is a real thing, that I wish I had known about sooner. If a party guest does not have Venmo downloaded on their phone, don't let them into the house.

+ Dinner reservations. Make ‘em. That’s all I have to say.

+ Some brides have the bandwidth to have multiple showers, but keep in mind that a Bach party is a perfect place to tuck in a lingerie shower. This can be as simple as a pair of novelty panties for your bride. (<-- a sentence I have never before written.)

+ Now enjoy yourself. You planned this shebang, and while your top priority is making sure your bride has the time of her life, you earned your champagne, sister.

Alright ladies, Bachelorette party tips, tricks, themes and hashtags- let's hear 'em! Share below in the comments. This is totally a safe space for shenanigans.


Missed the kick-off to the series? Check out Bridesmaid 101: Now What?

Stay tuned for Bridesmaid 101: the Bridal Shower, up next!

A Posh Swap

Wednesday, September 21

| necklace: Mexico | tee: super old H&M | skirt: Marimekko for Anthropologie via Poshmark swap | watch: c/o JORD |   | clogs: Swedish Hasbeens / similar |

Marimekko is a brand I’ve been obsessed with forever- and for good reason! Not only do their bright colors and prints have PRIYA written all over them, this is a brand my mom and even grandma grew up wearing in Finland. Marimekko was founded in Finland in 1951, and exploded into a visionary design house in the 60’s & 70’s, with their iconic patterns (like the Unikko poppy) and stripes. I “earned my stripes” in the form of a Marimekko tee at a very young age, and fueled by many gifts from my Finnish relatives, my liking turned into a full-blown obsession for all things Marimekko (which I've blogged about several times...)

I totally flipped when Target did their + Marimekko capsule this past Spring (and bought all the things), and I’ve been known to recognize their prints on sight when people are wearing them. Naturally when I saw this skirt in a fellow Poshmark closet, I knew it had to be Marimekko, and I had to have it. Even better- I traded for this with a dress that didn’t fit me anymore. Buying and selling on Poshmark is grand, but trading is kinda the best- exchanging an item on it’s way out for something you’re dying to wear, yes please (I just traded for two more items last night!) 

If you’re interested, you can shop my closet on Poshmark here. Sign up for Poshmark with code PWGSG and we both get $10 to spend! 

This skirt paired with my Swedish Hasbeens felt like the perfect nod to my Scandinavian heritage. 

Hope you're having a great week! I've been busy through and through, with work and life, so that's why you've barely heard a peep from me. But I'll talk to you soon :) 

Cool Girl

Friday, September 16

| lip: Cailyn Matte Tint in Pure Lust / similar matte pink | top: Aritzia via Carina / similar | purse: Marc Jacobs via Carina / similar | shorts: Topshop | shooties: Payless / similar (so cool!) |
[click the item names for additional styling options, vendor for product details/to shop!]

It has taken approximately two listens to Tove Lo's new song, Cool Girl, to get it stuck in my head from now until the END OF TIME. That's really where the title of the post comes from, not that I didn't feel cool in new brocade shorts walking in Brooklyn to dinner and drinks at the Brooklyn Barge. 

Of course I feverishly threw several potential going-out-fit pieces (all black) into my bag on Friday night before heading to NYC last weekend, and of course I hated them all upon arrival. Saturday's goal was to find an outfit I loved for going out that night, and after several stops in SoHo, I found these shorts at Topshop (they are available online! I'm wearing a 6 for your reference.) This was my first time in a Topshop! I fell in love with this print on a dress first, and then I saw the shorts and realized they would go perfectly with this crop top. Plus I love shorts these days. Bonus that I can wear them with tights in the Winter. And I really, really, love brocade!

As crazy as last weekend was, that's how chill and normal this weekend is- I have big goals of cleaning my house top to bottom (including my closet!), cooking something healthy for next week, dinner with friends, and some good workouts. Hope your weekend rocks, too!

Summer Office Casual

Thursday, September 15

| tank: from Carina {J.Crew} / similar | belt: from dress / similar | pants: secondhand Forever 21 / similar {so cool!} |   | sandals: Target | [click the item names for additional styling options, vendor for product details/to shop!]

I guess I should stop saying how much I don't like these pants, since this is the fourth time they've been worn on the blog! I love the style, though I'm not super confident in the fit. I guess I'll add "olive green pants that fit like a glove" to my "closet holes" list!

This is just a super casual I wore to work this Summer (with the hoodie on, don't worry Mom!) The only notable thing here is that I loved this color combo. This tank top is what I call a "rand-me-down" from my sister Carina, but it's one of my favorites because the color is so unusual (and the fit = perfect.) I'm trying to figure out what this color is called...I'd describe it as an orange-brown-red (so eloquent) but it likens to Pantone's "Potters Clay", part of the Fall 2016 palette! I might have to leave this tank in my closet through the Fall.

I've just got one more Summer outfit to share, and then I'm officially transitioning into Fall around here. If only the temperature would cooperate. Happy little Friday, everyone!

Weekend Update: 36 Hours in NYC

Tuesday, September 13

So I went to New York City for the first time (basically) this weekend, and I’ll just say, all the stereotypes are true!

My head was on a swivel for 36 hours as we: walked everywhere, drank under string lights in Brooklyn, watched people cuss out a taxi cab that nearly ran them over, ate a life-changing bagel, saw Fashion Week models “in the wild”, got hustled by tiny Asian ladies selling knock-off designer goods, rode the Subway and everyone was wearing headphones, and visited Times Square in the middle of the night (and it was as light as day.) 

OH- and the STREET STYLE! I get it now! Everyone is so freaking stylish- like, even if they were wearing something I would never wear, I could see that there was a concept behind the look, and I’m totally into that. I can see why you’d want to wear Nikes all over the city (so much walking) but I can also see why you totally wouldn’t. The only thing I “missed out on” was a Subway rat, and I use “ “ because rodents are my phobia fear so I didn’t miss out.

Thank you to my sister Carina “Little Peanut” who is always spoiling me and giving me honest feedback on sartorial choices. She’s the smallest bully I’ve ever known, and I totally bullied her into wearing and getting some lip color.

What I'm Excited to Wear This Fall

Friday, September 9

While true Fall is still weeks away in Nashville, like every other blogger, I am positively dreaming about what I’ll get to wear when the season rolls around. To be honest, I’m usually a few seasons late to trends (for better or for worse), so while some of these picks are super trendy right now, others of them are simply that: things I’m excited to wear this Fall. Fall being the most magical time of year, obviously. Bring on the pumpkin spice!

1. drawstring pants {exact} | I’ve been wearing my cargos & longing for loose linen pants that can also be hi-waisted. Old Navy (fave) has exactly what I’m looking for. I would wear those with a sweater + booties so fast!

2. velvet {similar} | I’ve actually been a huge fan of velvet since…well, forever. Imagine my excitement to learn that it’s in style! I have a velvet pencil skirt I need to re-style, I also came across ^ this velvet tee & I'm OBSESSED.

3. clogs with socks {very similar} | You already know I’m obsessed with clogsclogs with socks is a look I’ve also grown to love. I’ve dabbled with it before, but how adorable are clogs with patterned socks? I’m determined to try again and be a little braver with my sock choice.

4. button-front skirt {similar} | This may be the trendiest piece of the Fall, & I need one! I’m not too keen on wearing a mini-skirt to work, so I’m dreaming of a corduroy midi (so 70’s!) ^ This Topshop one is sold out, but there are so many great options: here, here, and here.

5. cat eye sunglasses {similar} | I need to up my sunglasses game, for sure. I love the alternative “cat eyes” that are popping up all over; colors, prints, sky’s the limit! A few pairs I love here, here, and here.

6. camel coat {very similar} | I can’t get over how chic this entire combo looks. I think it’s fair to buy a new coat for the year (esp. since I lost my favorite coat) & it might have to be a timeless camel. I like the ones that look more “oversized blazer” than “peacoat/trench."

7. lace up flats {similar} | This is the shoe of the moment and I am totally into it. Something about lace-up flats seems sexy but still sweet (& comfy- oh how I love flats!) Once again, Old Navy has a pair that I would be perf!

8. dark lipstick {could be exact?} | On the beauty front, dark vampy lipstick is everywhere. Ashlyn has been bold enough to wear black (& looks fantastic!) I would love to try out a very dark purple. I love lip color, but this would be a step out of my comfort zone! I came across this super handy pin of the best drugstore dark lip colors, also interested in my go-to lip in their darkest shades NYX / Stila.

9. maroon turtleneck {similar} | I’m dreaming of an over-sized sweater with a turtleneck/cowl neck that I can wear with absolutely everything! A neutral color will also do, but this dark maroon seems too perfect for the season.

10. plaid + a new hat {similar} | This is a twofer! I already have a green plaid just like this, & I also got my hands on the perfect plaid for Fall (via thredup.) What could feel more Autumnal?

This is the first time I’ve ever done a seasonal wishlist, and I’m hoping it will help me be a smarter and more responsible shopper; and overall, give me a better sense of what I want my style to be like.

What’s on top of your list to wear this Fall? If you’ve done a preview/lookbook/style story, share the link below, I would love to see it! 

As of {too} early tomorrow morning, I am off to NYC for a very quick, very belated birthday trip with my Little Peanut (NYC super fan.) The odds have been in my favor this afternoon, which means I should be able to check off most of my Fall shopping wish-list this weekend in the city that never sleeps. Look for some Fall preview outfits in the coming weeks! TTYL!

Head to Toe Remix #6: LWD

Wednesday, September 7

graphic by David Saunders
| lip: The Beauty Crop PBJ Smooth Stick | necklace: gift (31 Bits) | cardi: Gap (similar) | dress: gift (ASOS) (similar) |      | clogs: Swedish Hasbeens (same in red / similar) | purse: from Jenae! | 

Well, I can’t believe we’re already here! Both at the end of the Summer and the end of our #HeadtoToeRemix

Six weeks ago, Elana & I set out to remix six pieces in our closet, from head to toe, in an effort to shop our closets, instead of the alternative (you know, real shopping.) We’ve styled accessories, outerwear, tops, bottoms, shoes, {click through for the full posts!} and finally today: dresses! 

I have to say, I chose this white dress knowing I could look no further than Room 334 for a bunch of styling ideas! Elana is a self-proclaimed white dress lover and Priya-proclaimed LWD evangelist (LWD, you know, the cool Summer sister of the LBD.) When I was looking through Elana’s blog for ideas for styling this dress, I really liked…all of them, so I basically combined them into what you see here! A neutral cardigan from this outfit, clogs a la this look, red necklace c/o this combo, and sunglasses and lip color that are included in more of her outfit posts than not! 

I got this dress as a birthday present from my friend Katie last Summer, and wore it just as many times as I could (on the 4th of July, and even into the Fall!) I think I’ve worn it just once this Summer, so it definitely needed another rendezvous before the season was over (and in case you’re wondering, I did technically wear this before Labor Day.) This outfit is a great reminder to me that really simple looks are a-ok, both stylistically and comfortably! I wore this all day, from work to dinner and drinks and Trivial Pursuit, and felt great! It was the perfect outfit for a really lovely late Summer’s evening. 
And I love that conversely, Elana is styling an LBD! Black dresses are one of those things that can almost be an overwhelming blank canvas, but I think Elana nailed it with the accessories (she is the queen of sunglasses, seriously!) She should definitely hang on to this floaty chiffon number. You can see her entire post right here!

I’ve been so pleased with the result of this remix challenge. Besides taking the chance to look at and style neglected items in my closet a new way, I also spent the entire month of August without buying anything! Plus it’s just been fun to be in regular contact and blogging alongside Elana. Thanks Elana for collaborating with me!

And thanks to all of you for following along with the #HeadtoToeRemix

What was your favorite look of the series? Do you have a tip to share for shopping your closet? Let me know!

Bridesmaid 101: Now What?

Friday, September 2

I’m excited to launch a series that’s been kicking around in my brain for over a year: Bridesmaid 101.

At the start of 2015, I found myself gearing up to be a bridesmaid in FOUR weddings, having previously never been in a wedding- ever. This series is designed for any of you out there, who, like me, find yourself thrust into “that time” where all your friends are getting married (I find that all older people describe it wistfully this way with a twinkle in their eye.)

I had so many basic questions about the un-said expectations of me as a bridesmaid: If I’m traveling across the country, do I still need to buy a gift? Am I really expected to pay to get my own hair and make-up done? How far in advance do I really need to order my dress? If I’m not the maid of honor, how involved do I need to be in planning? Weddings are full of nuances like land-mines, you kinda don’t know they’re there until you step on them (and yeah, sometimes they explode.)

I was frantically texting my sister and asking older friends about what was expected and what was not, but I’m hoping that Bridesmaid 101 can be the sister you never had! Only this sister will not compete for your parent’s love and steal your clothes. Optimal!

Disclaimer: I’m definitely not an expert, and I’ve never been married myself; so I’m just sharing from my experiences. If you’ve had a different experience, or firmly believe that etiquette teaches otherwise from what I’m saying- I would love to hear about it! No doubt I will be a bridesmaid again (I am writing this on a plane, on my way to throwing a bridal shower for my sister-to-be l o l.)

I’m kicking off with a really simple premise- so your friend just asked you to be her bridesmaid?

Bridesmaid 101: Now What?

+ First of all if you didn’t get an in-person/Face-time ask- call that beesh up and say thank you! Make sure you squeal over the phone and let her know how honored you are that she chose YOU to be by her side on the most important day of her life.

+ This is also a fantastic time to excitedly start scoping out the next year (6 months, 2 years, whatever timeline you're working with.) Does she want a bachelorette party? Where? What’s the part she’s most stressed about? Should she even be marrying this guy? (That last one was a joke, kinda.) Keep in mind that the sooner you know big picture stuff, the easier it will be.

+ Find out who’s in the bridal party. Two reasons behind this one 1) it’s important to know which girls you love and which girls you hate are also bridesmaids (only kinda joking- but for planning purposes!) and 2) if you don’t have a date, it is imperative that you call dibs on the cutiest groomsman ASAP. :)

+ Find out what she’s going to do first. If there’s a dress-shopping appointment set, be there. If she wants to go look at venues, go with! If she just needs to convince her groom that they can’t do a hunting themed engagement shoot…first have a serious conversation with your girl and THEN help her draft that gentle talk.

+ I think the best piece of general advice I can give is to be proactive about helping out when needed. It’s important to realize that not everyone is a planner, and that’s ok (though, I’m amazed they’re still alive.) For some friends, you might honestly want to immediately print out a wedding timeline and offer to help design and mail a save the date. Remember, the only way to have a friend is to be a friend!

What's the first thing you do when you find out you're a bridesmaid? Share below!

This installment of Bridesmaid 101 was a light-hearted intro into a series that I promise is going to be 90% SERIOUS BUSINESS. Next up: the Bachelorette party!

ETA: all of my bridesmaid adventures are chronicled right here on the blog for your enjoyment.