Good Morning! I’m sending you a big time TGIF from New York!
Was it just me or was this the strangest week ever? After the Tuesday, July 4th holiday I completely lost track of what day of the week it was. This Wednesday was perhaps the most Monday-est Wednesday ever. Don’t worry though, I still managed to “get through it” — the perks of being on vacation! I spent my Wednesday wandering around Tribeca and my old neighborhood in the far West Village, ate lunch at a favorite — BUBBY’S, finally got to see “Hamilton – The Musical” and wrapped up the night with dinner and cocktails at LITTLE PARK. I was also in bed by 10:30pm and got to sleep in the next morning before a SOUL CYCLE class. Not too shabby, right?
I even managed to squeeze in some good internet research to bring you this week’s edition of Friday Link Love!
I cannot believe Thanksgiving is less than 3 weeks away.
I may have told you this before, but Thanksgiving is by far my favorite holiday of the year. I love a day that can be spent in the comfort of your own home, eating food you love and spending time with those you love most.
No gifting obligations. No religious requirements. Just good food, good fun and good memories.
How’s your week been? The last 4 days of my life have flown by and I could have not asked for a better start to our summer getaway. It’s been relaxing and reenergizing being back with my family, in one of my favorite places. My relationship with New York City is like one you have with an old, dear friend that you may not see for long stretches at a time. When you finally reconnect, it’s like you were never apart and you effortlessly pick up right where you left off.
I’m planning on a Soul Cycle class this morning then meeting up with my best college girls for lunch, one hour foot massages (can you really think of anything better?!), cocktails, dinner and hopefully a fun late night out. Let the games begin!
Lest you think I’ve tossed all “adulting” and responsibility to the wind this week — I have some really great links for you right this way!
• Next time you come home “hangry” from a workout, make sure that you have one of these recommended SNACKS TO REFUEL on hand!
What I’m Buying:
• I’ve been on an unprecedented sunglasses kick the last few weeks — I basically want all of them. NORDSTROM’S ANNIVERSARY SALE is wrapping up this weekend, but most sunglasses styles are still available at deep discounts!
A bit of housekeeping before we call this week a wrap: Next week’s content will be a bit on the lighter side (M, W + F) as I’m going to be cruising along to Bermuda! I have great outfit posts lined up for the blog and will be documenting our adventure on the high seas on INSTAGRAM and TWITTER — so make sure you follow me.
Every time I do a style presentation, one of the questions that always comes up is about packing essentials:
How do I pack a well-edited, versatile wardrobe without trying to jam my entire closet into my suitcase?
As you know, essentials is a pretty loose term and can be interpreted differently by different people, with different styles. My packing essentials tend to remain consistent with small tweaks based on my destination and length of travel.
In this case, it’s a long 4-day spring weekend in NYC for both work and fun. Casual work days interspersed with business related meetings and cocktails, followed by fun with long-time girlfriends and old colleagues at night! While I generally try to keep my travel wardrobe as tight as possible, with such varied activities and plans, I definitely had to account for a few extra outfits.
1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 (stock was low, so in case it’s sold out here’s a SIMILAR option!) // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9 // 10 (unfortunately, my own McQ by Alexander McQueen version featured HERE quickly sold out but #10 is a good alternative!) // 11 (old; here is a SIMILAR STYLE + a STEAL version!) // 12 // 13 // 14 (such a great dress for the price… I’ve been wearing mine for close to 3 years!) // 15 // 16 (these are such a great substitute for the gorgeous splurge AQUAZZURA version) // 17
One thing that I cannot emphasize enough, no matter where your travel destination and the length of your trip: select a single color paletteto work with. It makes it so much easier to pick what makes the suitcase cut and once you arrive at your destination, any of your selected pieces will work together allowing you to mix + match. Let’s not forget that one color palette keeps you from having to pack too many shoes– those are definitely the worst suitcase hogging offenders!
For my New York City weekend packing, I decided to go with camel, black, white and blue.
Obviously, I can’t go anywhere with my trusty LEATHER JACKET. This camel one I picked up for a steal at ASOS! Between early-morning travel and cold(er) mornings and late-nights, I have a feeling I’ll be getting a lot of use out of this guy. Regardless of climate, I always recommend traveling with a lightweight jacket. Leather, denim or blazer… they’re all good style options and I promise, you won’t regret having that topper with you when the sun goes down.
Another great packing tip is to travel with a large and durable tote bag that be transitioned to a daytime bag once you get off the plane. I also like to use leather pouches stashed inside the larger tote (like this WHISTLES BLUE CLUTCH) to hold my basics: keys, wallet, lip balm, etc. When it’s time to transition from work to play, I just slip out the clutch and leave the bulky tote bag behind.
Pick up any useful tidbits? Good. If not, sorry… there’s always next time! Now, this girl has got to get some beauty sleep before my crack of dawn flight…
One of my favorite NY restaurants/bars from my pre-child era is definitely Chef April Bloomfield’s, The Spotted Pig. It was the first gastro-pub of its kind in the area and started a major food movement towards elevating what we have come to know as bar food. Conveniently, my husband and I also lived 2 blocks away. Now, whenever we are back in New York City, we always try to make a pitstop at the Michelin starred “Pig” to reminisce and totally stuff our faces with some of the most delicious and (still) original gourmet pub fare.
One of my favorite appetizers on the menu, is an old-school English dish called Devils on Horseback (April’s recipe is HERE). If you search, I imagine you could find a million iterations of the dish. The one thing they all have in common is that they combine the sweet flavour of dried fruit, like dates or prunes, with the salty bite of well-cured bacon. Use that as your guideline and let your creative cooking juices flow! I decided to take on this recipe this past weekend and mix up the traditional assortment of football Sunday snacks. My version of the dish also included a farmer’s market purchased herbed goat cheese that was begging to be eaten. Oh baby, the Devils did NOT disappoint.
Devil’s on Horseback
24-30 pitted dates (depending on size)
4 oz herbed goat cheese
10 thin cut slices of bacon
1) Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line a small sheet pan with foil.
2) Take a small scoop- approx 1/2 tsp of the goat cheese and stuff inside of each date.
3) Once dates are stuffed, use approx 1/3 of a bacon strip and wrap date securely, tucking ends under and piercing the date package with a toothpick to hold it all together.
4) Line up the finished stuffed dates on your sheet pan, leaving some space in between each piece.
5) Bake the Devils for approximately 20 min until most of the fat has rendered from the bacon. At this point, I turn off the oven and turn the broiler on to “HIGH.” Let the Devils crisp up under the broiler for 1-2 minutes. The bacon should be mostly rendered, brown and crispy when you remove the Devils from the oven.
It’s been a whirlwind of a week in NY, and now that it’s winding down, I’m coming away with a number of great purchases and lots of new ideas. Starting with this concept: High-Low Styling. What is this, you ask? Well, it’s a styling method that I use a ton for my wardrobe (as well as my home decor). It involves investing in anchor pieces, and filling in the balance of the look with chic, but frugal purchases. A great shoe or handbag can elevate the look of a very ordinary skirt and t-shirt and make the look into something very special. Not to mention, make it appear much more expensive than its original price-tag. Seasonal styles and fads may come and go, so why not allocate a better part of your budget on those pieces that will stay with you forever?
For a Girls-Night-Out dinner this past Thursday at Nobu (I’m still thinking about the amazing Crispy Rice…. YUM!), I put my High-Low Styling skills to the test and passed with flying colors. I got complimented by both friends and strangers and felt great about my look and my frugal finds.
I’m super excited to bring this look home to Cleveland with me and mix and match the pieces with my existing wardrobe. I can already think of a bunch of new and fresh combinations- which I’ll definitely share with you!