I'm Julie, a born and bred New Englander living in Pittsburgh, PA. Full-time Editorial Specialist, thrift shopping aficionado, vintage junkie, cat lover, adventure seeker, art and outdoor enthusiast. Want to know more? The links below will get you where you want to go.
Thank you for stopping by!
The weather this weekend was deceptive. On Saturday, despite being beautiful and sunny, it was an icy 20 degrees with major wind chill. Chris and I had planned to walk to our favorite breakfast place, but were forced to drive when met with the wind. It really wasn't the worst, we got our coffee and were warm again as soon as we sat down. Saturday breakfast is one of my favorite rituals, it is a way to signal the start of the weekend for us, and a time to re-connect after a busy and stressful week. When Chris is around, I always want to dress up, we see so little of each other during the week, I fear he thinks I live in yoga pants and sweatshirts! I resisted the urge to be fancy on Saturday, mostly because I wanted to show off my new coat.
Oh how I wish I had found this beauty at the beginning of the season! The colors are perfect for fall, and it's made of soft wool. I found it while out thrifting on Friday afternoon, after wandering the aisles of Savers with nothing to show for it, I found this dream wedged between two winter coats. Even though I've been focusing on building my Spring wardrobe, I couldn't resist. To lighten the mood, I added a light chambray shirt, and stamped leather belt (which I obviously didn't get a good picture of).
How was your weekend? I have a really exciting thing to announce this afternoon, so stay tuned!
With the imminence of spring, I've been in major household cleaning mode lately. It's out with the old (and unused, unwanted, broken, and cluttered), and in with the new (or at least, new-to-me). Our apartment has felt a but stagnant lately, and I'm really looking forward to adding some much needed pizazz to the whole place:
ModCloth's Apartment section is not just for dorm rooms anymore. Hidden between fun cameras and cute tote bags are some lovely accessories for the home. The Nest of Nectar sugar dish would be beautiful on the kitchen table for sunday brunch, with a pretty floral tablecloth beneath. We have a clock very similar to the Party Time! Excellent! clock, but this one is much more fun (plus, who doesn't love a Wayne's World reference!). And The Adventures at Alhambra pillow is the perfect way to add some color to a room.
Along with spring-cleaning-fever, Chris and I have become seriously motivated about our wedding. With the snow falling outside, August feels like it's years away, but I know it will be here before we know it. I can't wait to have one of my oldest (and most talented) friends as our photographer. Spring has a whole new website and a whole new name, and it looks great! Weddings aren't her only specialty, she also creates beautiful family portraits and fine art to boot!
I'm sorry to do this two days in a row. I'm well aware of how saturated blogs are with post-fashion week coverage, but I have an excuse: April showers have decided to arrive early and the world is simply too damp for outfit photos. BUT, I have something really good to show you, rarely am I so drawn to a designer's entire collection, but I'm finding myself so with Steven Alan's Fall 2011 presentation:
I mean, how perfect is the whole thing? What I love about this collection is how accessible it is. We can't all afford Steven Alan (oh, but I wish I could!), but these are all items that are easily thrifted or bought cheaply, if not already existing in our closets. The pops of red, leopard, and stripes are what makes the whole collection for me, without those little bursts of excitement I think the whole thing might feel a bit dull. I also love the minimal accessorizing, the prints are allowed to breathe without being weighed down by too much jewelry. These are going right into my inspiration folder, maybe I'll even use them now, it's still cold out after all!
Can you believe it's nearly March? We're getting rain down here, but my sources tell me further north is getting another 15" of snow. I'm spending the day running errands and trying to stay dry. Happy Friday!
I don't post much about designer collections here, mostly because I feel there is so much coverage everywhere else on the web, especially post-fashion week. But I couldn't help posting these images from the Rachel Antonoff F/W 2011 presentation I came across on Refinery 29. Antonoff does such an impeccable job presenting the entire life of her collection in her presentations, it's instantly understood where her inspiration lies. The images themselves, shot in Holga format, remind me of the 6th grade school dances I was so reluctant to attend, only much more stylish of course. I'm so excited to see that the 60's and 70's will be hugely influential this coming fall, two of my favorite decades.
On another, slightly warmer day I wore a long flowing skirt and cozy sweater and didn't need a coat. Once again, I can't wait to wear this dress more simply, with just a belt, leather sandals, and a necklace. I have allowed myself to think constantly of warmer months, and there's no going back. I've started my vigil, these trees have got to bud sometime. I never thought I would love long dresses and skirts as much as I do, wearing them always seemed faux pas for shorter women- someone asked yesterday, I'm 5'5"- but I think the trick is to find a maxi dress with the right proportions. Or get it hemmed to the right length. I love this one Spotted Moth sent over, color-wise it's appropriate for multiple seasons (depending on how you style it), and it super comfy. I love the flutter sleeve too, even though it's covered up in the photo. I played off the oranges, taupes and browns by adding a taupe sweater, orange belt, and brown bag, and then added some gold to make everything pop.
For my birthday last month, I met my mom in New Hampshire for lunch and she surprised me with some items that had surfaced while she cleaned our basement. It may sound funny, but receiving these items again was one of the best gifts I have ever received. Included among the family photos, vintage clothes from my childhood dress-up trunk (yep, always loved vintage), and books, was this bag. It needs some serious care, but I love it. I never really expected her to relinquish it to me, and it means so much more now that she did. Anyways, I thought it went well with the 70's art student vibe I had going on. Thanks mom!
On an unrelated note, I mentioned on my Facebook that I received a question from a reader about my diet last week and am taking questions. I'll be answering these questions in a post early next week, so if you have a question to add tot he queue, head over to the Orchid Grey Facebook page to ask! You can also ask me a question on Twitter!
Ahh, Friday seems like it was a lifetime ago! As I mentioned yesterday, we experienced an all-too-brief taste of spring with 70 degree weather. As a celebration of the impending season, I broke out some items that have been burning a hole through my proverbial pocket, just for a day spent running errands with Chris. I bought this springy dress on my trip to New York at Beacons Closet, and it's so comfortable. I love clothing that doesn't take much thought to wear, just put it on and go. I've been saving these shoes for a few weeks now, there's been too much snow to wear them out. I love them with tights here, but I can't wait to throw them on with pretty spring dresses and skirts, sans tights. For being so high, they're remarkably easy to walk in and comfortable. I added some brown and gold accessories, like my Coach bag, brown belt, and gold cuff. I'm kind of in love with this bracelet, it features a rather angry looking sea-bird, which is appropriate since I live close to the water and stepping out into our parking lot can be like entering a scene from "The Birds" at times.
This week has been quiet so far. Unfortunately, the warm weather didn't last and we're back to a very brisk 20 degrees. This morning I volunteered at the Shipbuilding Museum, which I'm hoping will become a regular thing. My task for the day involved leading a few school groups along a boatbuilding themed scavenger hunt. I'm really looking forward to going back when it's warm, if any of you have ever heard of Woodman's (where the fried clam was invented), the museum is right up the road.
Did you have a good weekend? After a very warm Friday (70 degrees!), we were back to chilly winter on Saturday, but I didn't let the freezing cold wind keep me inside. Bright and early Saturday morning I headed to Essex with a couple of friends for a mug-up at the Essex Shipbuilding Museum. What's a "mug-up" you ask? It's the Cape Ann term for a coffee break. The term comes from where the mugs are kept on a boat, usually they hang upside-down and you have to "turn your mug up" when you get your coffee. Waaay back boatbuilders preferred whiskey instead of coffee, but the drink of choice was changed in the name of productivity and cost. Anyway, the real reason we were there was to view the new schooner being built at H.A. Burnham across the way, the Ardelle. My friend Chris led the way as our guide, and despite the cold we all had a great time:
I'm volunteering at the Museum tomorrow and I'm really excited about it. I love this area of Massachusetts, mainly because it doesn't feel like Massachusetts. It's a completely different environment than Boston, or even the area of the Northshore that I live. I think I like it so much because it reminds me of Maine, and I miss living in Maine. We're back to winter again today, I woke up to snow, but admittedly as much as I can't wait for Spring, the snow is really beautiful.
Well, it's official: I'm obsessed with Spring. After a balmy 70 degree Friday, I can't help it. I can't wait for spring flowers, warm days, and spring dresses. Yes, I'm also obsessed with dresses lately. Today, I thought I'd share some of my favorite pieces from a couple of my fabulous sponsors:
Have you visited Lulus.com lately? Pretty spring dresses are coming in everyday, in some of my favorite fabrics and patterns for the new season. I've been loving lace lately and I think the Parisian Affair lace dress would look great with a floral cardigan and men's-style brogues. The Tulle Sweater Dress is perfect for now and later, doesn't it look so perfectly comfortable? And how pretty is the Darling Buds of May dress? That is the quintessential spring dress: feminine, swingy, and floral.
You didn't think I would forget, did you? Zeb has been my constant companion this week, which is strange. Out of the two of them, Zephyr seems to think he's my personal assistant and Zeb only hangs out on special occasions (like if someone new and worth flirting with comes over). But for some reason, this week has been different, and Zeb's been my little shadow. Our dryer has been broken for the past month or so, and after getting sick of dragging our wash to the laundromat, I've invested in a drying rack and made use of our heating system. The combination of warm laundry and heat is like a magnet for Zeb, and when he wasn't sitting on my lap, I kept finding him lounging between the towels. Cats always seem to find the best places to hide.
The last of my NYC pictures. These were taken on our travel day back home, last Friday. This outfit is purely practical, just something comfortable I threw on for the train and then the car ride home. While packing for the trip, I neglected to take into account that I would probably be coming home with more stuff than I went there with (or maybe I was naive enough to think that I wouldn't actually buy anything? ha.), so packing to come home was...a task.
I threw on the hat and glasses so they wouldn't get crushed in my bags and layered a couple of sweaters underneath so I wouldn't have to pack those. The final product felt a little Gloria Steinem, which I'm fine with. I found this bag on a thrifting excursion on my birthday. I don't think anyone noticed that it was Coach, because it was priced at $6.99, probably the best deal I've ever gotten. I love the size of it, it's large enough to fit a library book, but not too large that it gets filled with papers and trash (my bad habit). Plus, I like that it's the opposite color-wise from my jacket.
Well, this marks the end of my New York photos this week. All-in-all it was a great trip, but I really can't wait to go when the weather isn't frigid!
There have been glimpses of my IFB outfit in my last couple of posts, but I thought I would do a real style file today. To tell the truth, I had a completely different outfit planned, but the morning of I decided on this and over-all, I'm happy with it. This ModCloth dress has been sitting in the back of my closet for a few months now, I had forgotten that it works best with tights (you can see how I previously styled it here), I packed it up and brought it along! To off-set the bright white, I mixed in a lot of neutrals and dark green. My goal was to look spring-y but seasonally appropriate. I think I got it right.