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Autumn Uniforms

I love the idea of having a uniform. Something tried, tested and it makes me feel stylish and confident. But I also don’t need to give it a lot of thought when I get dressed in the mornings. Of course not all the uniforms we wear are appropriate for all situations and occasions. I’ve put together 6 Autumn uniforms for 6 of my weekly or monthly activities. They’re all pretty interchangeable, but that’s mostly due to my rather casual lifestyle.


Heading to work uniform inspiration photo // Topshop sweater // Zara “leather skirt // Topshop booties // Exploring the city uniform Inspiration photo // Rag & Bone fedora // Topshop faux-leather jacket // Uniqlo skinny jeans // Topshop booties //


Coffee house blogging uniform inspiration // Nordstrom scarf // ASOS beanie // Madewell sweatshirt // J. Crew peacoat // American Eagle jeggings // Weekend errands uniform inspiration // Zara faux leather jacket // Gap sweater // Madewell jeans // BP beanie // New Balance Sneakers //


Gallery hopping uniform inspiration // Zara grey coat // Uniqlo cashmere sweater // Uniqlo skinny jeans // Rag & Bone booties // Brunch with friends uniform inspiration // ASOS cable knit sweater // Topshop Jamie jeans // Boden clutch //

Do you wear a self-imposed uniform? What is it? What are your basics for the Autumn? My top 5 pieces are: a great coat, black jeans, oversized sweater, booties and a scarf. Pretty much everything you see in this post!

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Charlotte Tilbury Make-up Launches in the U.S. September 2nd

I am so excited that Charlotte Tilbury’s make-up line is launching in the U.S. today! Charlotte is a well-known make-up artist and has been working in the business for over 20 years. You’ve see her work on tons of magazine covers and on so many celebrities walking the red carpet. What I love about Charlotte is her passion for make-up, her love of glamour and her philosophy that make-up can be empowering. Watch any of her videos on her YouTube channel and you will completely fall in love with this vivacious and passionate woman!



The major concept behind Charlotte’s makeup line is picking one her signature looks and she has an entire make-up wardrobe created for it. All you need to do is decide who you want to be? I love the the Golden Goddess and I think the Bombshell would be so fun around the holidays. Of course I have secretly always wanted to be a cool Rock Chick. My normal everyday generally leans towards the Ingénue.


I have been lusting after Charlotte’s line of make-up ever since it was released in the UK last year. In her work she is known for her smokey eye and luminous skin. So her eyeshadow palettes, mascara and Magic Cream are products that are really going to be amazing. Can we also just take a moment to drool over the packaging. Look at that vintage inspired palette below. It is so gorgeous and glamourous! It reminds me of the the only tube of red lipstick my Mom had. The packaging looked like a golden disco ball. It was by far the fanciest and most glamourous item we had in our average suburban Detroit home. Charlotte really brought the feeling of old Hollywood glamour with this packaging.

Here are the products I’m most excited to try from Charlotte’s line. Oh and Ahem! Family and friends, Christmas and my birthday are coming up in a few months. Wink, wink, nudge, nudge. Cheeky, I know! But I’m just putting it out there! Ha!


1. Filmstar Bronze & Glow, 2. Powder & Sculpt Brush, 3. Lip Cheat lip liner in Pillow Talk, 4. Full Fat Lashes Mascara, 5. Wonderglow, 6. Charlotte’s Magic Cream, 7. Filmstars On The Go in Breakfast at Tiffany’s (UK only), 8. Luxury Palette in The Golden Goddess.

Charlotte Tilbury’s make-up line launches in the U.S. on Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014. It’s available on her new U.S. website, Nordstrom, Net-a-Porter and Beautylish.


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Wants vs. Experiences


I’m a bit of a dreamer and have always had a huge case of wanderlust. I would rather spend more on experiences, especially travel, than buying things. My priorities and desires shifted for awhile, especially after I got married which coincided with my love affair with Danish Modern furniture hitting an all time high. It’s not that I wanted to stop having experiences, but my budget (and academia paycheck) didn’t stretch far enough to afford the furniture I was lusting after and the trips I wanted to take. So travel took a back set while Toby and I set up our home.

I reached a point recently where I realized I lost site of my old priorities. I was spending most of my earnings on things, rather than saving them towards a trip. I thought of the vacation I took with my family to Devon and Cornwall last year and I realized all these material possessions weren’t bringing me as much joy as that vacation. I do love buying a new lipstick, some fancy skincare or a lovely sweater, but the bonding experience I had with my family and seeing the rugged, romantic scenery of Western England has stayed with me more than any purchase.

My wanderlust bug is hitting me hard lately. Maybe it has to do with being in my mid-thirties. I’ve been reevaluating where I am at, what I have done and haven’t done. The part that feels unfulfilled and makes my heart ache is the thought of dying without seeing the world and all the places I have dreamed of since I was a little girl. Am I going through some sort of mid-30s life crisis?




Yeah, a bit.

How do you balance and budget for all your life dreams and goals? I love to travel and want more of it in my life. But I do also love fashion and the occasional sartorial splurge. Being a blogger there is a lot of temptation to click “buy” when I see something online. Amy from Design Sponge went through a spending detox diet, which sounds like a good idea to try. How do you resist that urge to buy something that doesn’t line up with your saving goal? I feel like I need to figure out a way to trick my brain. It wants that instant gratification, but I’d rather have the travel experience in the long run.

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Rick Bayless Garden Tour

Earlier this Spring while I was researching vegetable gardening in Chicago, I stumbled across the opportunity to tour Rick Bayless’s garden. If you don’t know who Rick Bayless is, he’s a well known chef in Chicago specializing in Mexican food and the host of the PBS series Mexico – One Plate at a Time. He’s really elevated Mexican cuisine with his restaurants Frontera Grill and Topolobampo.


The Bayless’s live in Bucktown, a Chicago neighborhood northwest of downtown. My first apartment in Chicago is right around the corner from their home. They own three city lots (!!!), with two buildings (one they live in and the second they rent out) and the middle lot is all garden. The garden includes a chicken coop, bee hive, small fish pond, patio, grape covered pergola, fire pit and Rick’s outdoor kitchen you see on his cooking show. As well flowers, plants and vegetables everywhere!








When the grapes are ripe they are used at Rick’s restaurants, mostly in desserts.



The garden directly behind the Bayless’s home is where things really get special. The tour was led by the head gardener, Bill Shores. The raised beds are custom made of Bill’s design. They are sleek, minimal and maximize production in a small space. They mostly grow lettuces, but also lots of edible flowers, butternut squash, beans and herbs. The garden produces a lot of food. Obviously it can’t supply all of a restaurant’s food, but in the summer months it produces the majority of the salad greens, mostly for Topolobampo. 







This space is at the back of the garden and its filled with new plants waiting to be planted and at the end in the back corner is the compost.


Lots and lots of mint! Think of all the mint tea and mojitos!


This dill is planted to attract pollinating bees.


Busy bee doing its thing!



On the 2nd floor of the Bayless’s home is a greenhouse. A lot of the plants move up there during the winter.


The tour lasted just over an hour and was very inspiring to see how much can be done in a compact space. Granted the Bayless’s have triple the space what most Chicagoans have, but there were a ton of ideas all around.


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August Wish List


It’s a cliche statement, but this year is flying by! August already. Soon it will be sweater and boots weather. Fall collections have been hitting the stores and quite a handful of items have gone on my wish list this month.

1. I’ve agreed to do the flowers for my friend’s wedding in September. I’ve never done anything like this before, so I’m slightly terrified, but also really excited. I flipped through The Flower Recipe Book a few months ago and it is a lovely book, so I think this will be a good guide for my big task. Wish me luck!!

2. I absolutely LOVE this rosie lamp from CB2! Marble, pink and edison bulbs, what’s not to love?! I think this would look lovely in our bedroom and give a soft, romantic glow.

3. I’ve recently made peace with the idea of buying a leather jacket despite being a vegetarian for 17 years. There’s no vegetarian police out there going to arrest me and I’m a grown ass lady! HARUMPH! I keep on going back to Zara’s site to check this jacket out. It’s so cool and rather Balenciaga-esque. I’ve heard that Zara leather jackets are pretty decent quality for the price. Does anyone have any experience with their leather jackets?

4. Nourishing Notes is a great Chicago maker. I have their Donuts make the world go round tea towel and it always puts a smile on my face and makes we want a donut. I feel I need to show the world just how deep my love for rosé is with their their new Hooray for Rosé towel.

5. Gardening + French + Sweatshirt = Fall Perfection. I am all over this Madewell sweatshirt like a teenager eating spicy hot cheetos.