Thursday, January 31, 2013

Word of the Day: Vivacious

One time a coworker told me I am "vivacious," which I consider a huge compliment.

Vivacious - Attractively lively and animated; lively in temper, conduct, or spirit.
That outgoing, vivacious girl is going to be famous one day. You should be her friend.

lively - sprightly - spirited - brisk - animated - bubbly - ALIVE

If you ask me, this cute, bouncy melody by Irish songbird, Lisa Hannigan, is a perfect example of what it means to be vivacious...and colorful. 

Check out "What'll I Do" as well. I love happy music!


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

What I Wore: Inauguration Weekend

Inauguration has come and gone, and it was a full weekend of fancy events and fabulous memories. I wanted to share some of fun here. Enjoy!

State Society Gala - Saturday night

There's nothing like the bond with friends from your own state when you no longer live there. In transient DC, state societies are a great way to make fast, lasting friends. Some of my dearest friends in Washington, DC, have been from my home state. I guess we're just drawn to each other.

Our State Society was my favorite event in the getting ready department. I was absolutely in love with my dress, and everything else end up coming together perfectly. I had my hair blown out by Drybar in Georgetown and will forever be a customer. They were pretty behind on all their appointments that day (no surprises since it was Inauguration weekend), and it took quite a while to get me in even with an appointment. When my blowout was complete and beautiful, I went to pay, and they told me it was on them because of my wait. I wasn't expecting it at all, but I do love good customer service. They've got it down.

What I Wore:
Cinderella blue cocktail dress - Adrianna Papell
Sequin clutch - Marshall's
Silver heels - DSW
Floral drop earrings - Forever21

What Katie Wore:
Black cocktail dress - Nicole Miller
Statement necklace - Stella & Dot

What Chelsea Wore: 
Black floor length dress - David's Bridal
Chandelier earrings - her mom's store

The Ceremony - Monday morning
I had a really wonderful seat for the ceremony and could see the President as he gave his Inaugural address! Having the opportunity to observe this historic occasion was worth the cold weather and early morning wake-up call. 

Agriculture Inaugural Grand Ball - Monday night
This was the last of Inaugural events that I attended, and I had a great time dressing up. I was a little tired after the long morning watching the actual ceremony, but after a quick nap and sleeping too long, I was ready to get fancy again--complete with fake eyelashes and bright red lipstick. Chelsea Girl (aka, best friend) and I snapped a few fun photos

What I Wore:
Black floor length dress - Jil Sander
Statement necklace - Accessorize

What Chelsea Wore:
Blue Grecian-like dress - borrowed from a friend
Necklace - her mom's store

Doesn't Chels look like Marilyn Monroe in the second to last photo? Usually, I'm told that I channel  Zooey Deschanel, so I guess we both just look like movie stars. Fine with me.

It's certainly been an unforgettable past few days, more memories made that I'll treasure forever!


Thursday, January 17, 2013

Inauguration Ready: The Ceremony

Like the Olympics, the Presidential Inauguration only comes once every four years. Come Monday, it will be that time again, and I am very much looking forward to it. Politics aside, this is a historic occasion worth experiencing, especially if, like me, you happen to live in the same city as the President of the United States.

The entire city practically shuts down and security is even tighter than usual for the swearing-in of the country's highest leader. Thousands of visitors from all over the country and world journey to Capitol Hill and gather along the National Mall to watch. It's usually cold and wet, with the threat of snow likely at any moment, but that has never stopped anyone from participating.

The key things to remember when dressing appropriately and fashionably is layering, layering, layering. Find a warm wool sweater (turtlenecks keep cold wind out) and some kind of long-sleeve undershirt for your base. Throw on some leggings under your favorite skinny corduroys. Invest in a comfortable pair of leather boots; flats are best, as you'll be doing a LOT of walking and standing. Buy a pair of earmuffs or a cute knit beret to keep your ears warm and bring some fun bright-colored gloves for those fingers. But most importantly, make sure your coat is classy, fits well, and has some sort of interesting detail (like the bows above). Top it all off with a pair of binoculars around your neck!

Get the Look:
Coat - $132 - ASOS
1) Turtleneck sweater by J. Crew - $85 - Net-A-Porter; 2) Skinny cords - $122 - Stylebop; 3) Leather boots by Frye (in spice) - $325 - Zappo's; 4) Fur earmuffs - $28 - SimplyFurs; 5) Mini cross body bag by Tusk - $182 - Amazon; 6) Yellow knit gloves - $18 - Banana Republic; 7) Vintage binoculars - $34.95 - arcadecache


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Inauguration Ready: Grand Ball

While I might not attend a full-blown inaugural ball this weekend, there are plenty of events that absolutely warrant a beautiful gown. If money were no object, I would love to wear the gorgeous combination above. The moment I saw that dress, I knew it was made for a 20-something Washingtonian like myself. What more could I ask for? Vibrant color that is sure to make my eyes pop, accordion pleated skirt that references the 70s, deep yet elegant neckline that begs for a long, icey necklace... Combine all those things with a loose low bun or knot (especially if you have long hair like me), as not to cover up the front or back of the dress, and this dress is ready to be showcased!

It certainly might not be the usual choice for a ball gown, but its flowy elegance would make any girl a standout at the ball. Besides, wouldn't you rather wear something a little unexpected and be the one everyone is talking about?

Get the Look: Pleated gown by Halston Heritage - $495 - Neiman Marcus
1) Vintage evening cape - $60 - 75Studios; 2) Beaded clutch - $126 - Nordstrom; 3) Eyeshadow palette by Shiseido (Snow Shadow) - $33 - Sephora; 4) Geneve lace necklace - $98 - Stella & Dot; 5) Geneve lace earrings - $44 - Stella & Dot; 6) Geneve lace ring - $49 - Stella & Dot; 7) Sparkly silver pumps - $280 - BHLDN


Monday, January 14, 2013

Inauguration Ready: Cocktail Gala

It's an exciting week here in our nation's capital! There is much anticipation and preparation happening for the fancy inaugural events that will be taking place in less than a week. Not surprisingly, I am incredibly excited about these events, not just because it's historic and only happens every four years. Like any stylish, fashion-obsessed girl, inaugural parties can only mean one thing: an opportunity to dress up and probably (and when I say "probably," I mean "absolutely") buy a new dress or two.

As I prepare my inaugural wardrobe, I decided it would be fun to have a short series and let you in on what I might be wearing as I participate in history.

First on the list, I will be attending a fabulous inaugural gala (cocktail attire) this Saturday, and while I haven't landed the perfect dress yet, I dream of something just as elegant as the dress above. Lately, I have been drawn to light-colored slip dresses with a darker lace or sequin overlay. These dresses are everywhere, so you're certain to find one that fits your style. Don't forget to finish off your look with bright red lipstick!

Get the Look: Dress by Sue Wong - $488 - Nordstrom
1) Black fur coat - $840 - Farfetch; 2) Gold silk pumps - $260 - BHLDN; 3) Teardrop earrings - $16 - Accessorize; 4) Clutch - $278 - Kate Spade; 5) Lipstick by NARS (in orange red) - $24 - Sephora


Thursday, January 10, 2013

What will you make of yourself?

New Year's Eve - 2012

A new year.

I can hardly believe it every time I write "2013." I'm amazed at how much time has gone by since I graduated college and moved to this fabulous place I call home. There isn't one moment or memory I would trade.

We all know a new year wouldn't be a new year without goals, so I'd like to share a few of mine moving forward to 2013. 

Uncover old dreams.
However funny it might sound, I've been doing a lot of soul searching lately. A re-evaluation of sorts, thinking back on the path that brought me where I am today. While I'm not quite sure what it all means yet, I do know that God puts dreams in your heart for a reason, and your dreams are rarely the same as someone else. Some dreams may never come to pass, some are fulfilled later, and some come about before you can blink twice. Sometimes new dreams are even born from broken dreams.

All good and right things require hard work. This year, I want to pay careful attention to the effort I am putting forth (not just at my job) and make sure that I'm still giving more than my all. If my dreams are worth pursuing and worth having, they deserve my utmost attention and effort. 

Pour into others.
If you know me, you know I love people and will usually choose socializing over sitting at home, even after a full work day/week. I guess you could say the theme of the last two years has been, "Always say yes" (channeling a little Yes Man). I love making new friends and discovering what I can learn from them. Yes, I actually enjoy networking. But sometimes I wonder how much I'm really investing in my friends. How am I showing that I care about them? What am I doing for them? How am I helping meet their needs? I want to find more lasting ways to invest in people--beyond the surface. That could mean sending a note of encouragement, giving a book away that influenced me for the better, mentoring a younger friend, or simply actively listening to one who is hurting (really being there, not just in the room).  

Plan ahead with my wardrobe.
I want to take a day, once or twice a month, to evaluate what I have and what I need. Upon each evaluation, I'll do a fashion inventory and make a list of things (dubbed "essentials" or "desires") to keep on hand when I'm out window shopping (we all know I never just window shop though). During inventory, I'll pull together new outfit combinations, snap a photo, and save everything for future use. Currently, I have a reminder on my calendar to prepare outfits a week in advance, and having a database of all my outfits will be helpful in this success! 

Blog at least once a week. 
Long post, short post, whatever I long as it HAPPENS. I miss blogging a lot, and I feel like a part of myself is missing without regularly writing about fashion. So I'm going to devote time every week to brainstorming ideas, writing up posts, and being inspired by other fabulous bloggers. IFB is a great resource, and I need to use it more often for ideas and blog development. No need to re-invent the wheel! In addition, I'd really like to get connected with other fashion bloggers in my area. There are some really stylish people around here!

Continue living a healthy lifestyle. Body, mind, and spirit.
Body: Overall, I feel like I did a great job being active last year. I easily walked up to 25 miles per week, just during my commute to and from places (the perks of living in a walking city). I also started running regularly and occasionally did Insanity with my best friend Chelsea (girl in the blue dress). This year, I want to continue all of these habits, get more rest, and add Pilates DVDs to the mix.

Mind: I had wonderful plans for my intellectual health last year, and I did okay. I read and watched the news every day, constantly got lost in Relevant Magazine articles, and attempted reading several books for book club. I just need to do more of all of that and actually finish books.

Spirit: Reading the Bible and going to church impacts my life. I need both, and when I throw them to the wayside, my life suffers and I lose my sense of purpose. I need to invest more in these things this year.

Okay, this turned into a novel of a post. Glad to be back though. We'll be talking more soon!