I wasn’t kidding in last week’s post when I said I picked this shirt up in multiple colors. It’s the first thing I grab on the weekends lately, because it can be layered under almost anything, making it wearable no matter what the weather may bring. The temperature took a plunge this weekend, coupled with the most rain we’ve seen all year, so I layered this cozy sweater on top and brought out a new pair of coated denim jeans to embrace the chilly air. These are my first pair of coated denim (also known as “waxed denim”) and I’m thrilled to add them to my jean collection. They are a perfect balance between leather leggings and standard black skinny jeans, so they’re a great option if you’re looking for a little bit of edge while still playing it safe. Most of the coated denim I had tried in the past had an awkward fit, so I was convinced the material wasn’t flattering, but this pair by DSTLD proved me wrong. They’ve got just enough stretch to make them not only flattering, but so comfortable, too.
Living in Los Angeles isn’t something I take for granted, but there are times that I forget just how close I am to some of the most beautiful neighborhoods. There is one in particular, known as the Venice Canals, that I always seem to overlook; not because it’s unworthy of being noticed, but because it’s peacefully tucked away from the heart of Venice Beach. It was modeled after Venice, Italy, and is lined with charming houses and bridges that connect each walkway. Because my boyfriend hadn’t been since he was little, we took a stroll through the neighborhood, stopping to admire the gorgeous gardens, quaint houses, and colorful boats. I had been at night for their annual boat parade, but catching it at sunset this time made it all the more magical.
I occasionally go through periods where I feel I’m lacking certain pieces in my wardrobe. Usually it’s items that are trending in magazines or blogs, but recently it’s been more classic pieces for me; destroyed denim, a black belt, some substantial leather ankle boots, a basic v-neck tee. These are items that I know I’d wear often, but until now, I had yet to find my ideal version of each. I browsed countless retailers and finally found these pieces, and I’m so happy with each. I even went back to buy this tee in three different colors, I love it so much. It may not last long, but I finally feel content with everything in my closet. Investing in classic pieces always seems to leave me feeling that way.
On those days where I’m struggling to put an outfit together, there are a few looks I tend to default to. They usually consist of something easy, like a romper or dress if the weather permits. But lately if I have to wear jeans, it’s going to be these. They’re the most comfortable pair of denims I’ve ever owned, so I have no guilt about wearing them as often as I do. And they go with everything, so finding a matching top is effortless. I opted for the ultimate classic look last weekend with a jean jacket, striped tee and some slip-on sneakers since I knew I’d be doing a lot of walking. My boyfriend and I spent the day in East LA, which I’ll pretend was filled with cultural and educational exploration, but our primary motive was to try these. Making our way across town was a bit stressful, but I can’t think of a better payoff after trekking through LA traffic. Can you?
I used to be strongly opposed to turtlenecks. I couldn’t shake the notion that they were dorky, and the high neckline made me feel claustrophobic. Fast forward ten years, though, and I’ve got a whole new attitude. The loose, slouchy fit of this one keeps it far from being dorky or claustrophobic, and it could not be softer. After a long dry spell, LA finally got some rain this past weekend, so I pulled this cozy outfit together for a walk to a nearby coffee shop.
Winter in Los Angeles has a very different meaning from most parts of the country. It rarely drops below 60 during the day and rainy days are few and far between. Sometimes summer even makes an appearance right in the dead of it, so finding yourself on a beach in the middle of January isn’t unheard of (I know – we have it rough). Needless to say, it can be unpredictable, so relying on some basic essentials that work for a variety of temperatures is a must. My main objective is always comfort, so when I can’t get away with wearing sweats, I opt for a casual pair of denim, like these distressed jeansfrom Rag & Bone. I’m usually pairing them with the next best thing to pajamas, which is easily one of my Rails Hunter button downs. They’re extremely soft and can be layered over a tee for lighter coverage, or buttoned up for cooler days. And if the sun decides to come out unexpectedly, they can be ditched as a layering piece and tied around the waist. Heavy boots aren’t necessary when it comes to shoes, but sandals aren’t always practical either, so I find a happy medium is a low heeled ankle boot or comfy pair of sneakers. In other words, you’ll likely find me in some variation of this outfit right here. Although I love our mild weather, I do have the occasional chunky sweater and winter scarf envy, so I thought it would be fun to team up with one of my blogging friends, Caitlin, of Pattern Me Pretty, who’s sharing her clothing essentials for winter on the East Coast.
I generally play it safe when it comes to coffee. If I’m not drinking it black, I’m ordering a traditional latte. That recently changed, though, after paying a visit to Philz Coffee, a Bay Area chain that just set up shop in Santa Monica. Their signature “Mint Mojito Iced Coffee” kept popping up on my Instagram feed and I was curious to see what the hype was all about. Naturally, my first inclination was to think alcohol, so the idea of a mojito flavored coffee had me questioning its ability to deliver. Oh, how wrong I was. The combination of fresh mint over ice was unbelievably refreshing, and the creamy foundation kept the flavors subtle. I’ve been back twice since (I documented my first visit here), and I can only imagine how often I’ll be craving these come summer. In the meantime, I decided I’d give my wallet a break and replicate the recipe as best I could so I could enjoy it from home. Nothing will rival the original, but this one comes pretty close.
Ingredients (serves 2)
1/2 cup freshly ground coffee
2 cups cold water
1 bunch mint leaves (about 6-8)
1 tablespoon turbinado sugar
2 tablespoons heavy cream (1 for each coffee)
Ice cubes (I made coffee ice cubes to keep the drink from watering down)
Fresh mint leaves for garnish
Prepare coffee ice cubes a night in advance. Brew coffee the following day. While the coffee is brewing, place the mint leaves and sugar into a liquid measuring cup and gently muddle them together. Once the coffee is brewed, pour hot coffee over the mixture. Stir gently. Refrigerate until chilled. To serve, pour coffee into two serving mugs and add a tablespoon of cream to each. Top with ice and additional fresh mint for garnish.
A black pencil skirt is one of those items you’re bound to find in every girl’s closet. They’re undeniably classic, and a great staple for interviews, meetings, and/or work. But it wasn’t until recently that I owned a leather one (or in this case faux leather), and I’m already having so much fun styling it. Since they’re a bit edgier by nature, I prefer to balance it with a softer look up top. A knitted sweater is the perfect juxtaposition to the sleek leather this time of year, and I think it would look just as great with a light flannel or basic tee come spring.
Southern California winters are so fickle. It’s raining as I’m writing this, but you wouldn’t have guessed it was coming judging from the beach weather we had this past weekend. The warm temperatures even carried into the night and the city felt extra lively with everyone out and about soaking it up. It also happened to be my birthday this weekend, so I was excited to catch some sunshine for all of the fun activities we had planned. Breaking out summer attire in the dead of winter certainly feels strange, but it meant being able to wear this new top much sooner than I anticipated. I fell in love with the crochet detailing and bohemian feel of it when I first spotted it a couple weeks back, and I thought the light fabric would make it a great option for some upcoming music festivals. Now that I’ve had the chance to wear it, I’m happy to say it works just as well for the beach, or, with views like this, admiring it from above.
I’ve never had the discipline for juice cleanses. No solid food for days? No thanks. I am, however, a big believer in incorporating juices and smoothies into my diet. When I’m not buying them at juiceries around LA, I’m making them at home with my Nutri Bullet. I generally keep the ingredients simple, combining standard greens like spinach and kale with some of my favorite fruits, but when Williams-Sonoma invited me to partake in their “Not Your Typical Smoothie” challenge, I jumped at the chance to get a little more creative. The goal was to create a smoothie that was uniquely different from something you might normally find, so I set out in search of a couple of ingredients that felt a bit unusual. My picks? Beans and avocado. Apart from the obvious health benefits of each (including fiber, protein and iron, to name a few), they provide a rich and creamy consistency that goes down easily, but is substantial enough to leave you satisfied. I had my reservations about gambling with such an unusual combo, but the result was surprisingly delicious. And if I hadn’t made it myself, I wouldn’t have known they were even part of the mix. Here’s the recipe I came up with:
1/2 cup chilled cannellini beans
2/3 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
2/3 cup vanilla almond milk
1/2 juice of a lemon
1 1/2 cups sliced honeydew
2/3 cup spinach
1 frozen banana
Place all ingredients into a blender (I used my Nutri Bullet, but Williams-Sonoma offers a great selection of blenders here). Blend until smooth and serve immediately.