Thursday, August 27, 2015

Back to School Picks




Since I'm preparing to go back to school this fall, I thought it would be fun to put together a list of a few items that are currently on my shopping list. My current wish list consist of items that will make it easy for me to run around campus, keep me organized and make being in class for long periods of time as comfortable as possible. If you're headed back to school and have similar goals, you can shop my picks below:



xoxo,

Helen

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Sunday, August 23, 2015

Summer Uniform

IMG_7928
Photos by Ale Veyna

Outfit Details:
Forever 21 Fedora Hat (Similar)
H&M Polka Dot Crop Top
Nine West Sandals (Similar)

IMG_7956 IMG_7949 IMG_7934

Even though I've been enjoying the opportunity to be more creative with my wardrobe now that I'm "funemployed," I have still managed to develop a summer uniform which consists of this pair of Madewell denim shorts, a tank or t-shirt and a hat. You can catch me in this outfit almost every other day because it's the perfect thing to wear during the high temperatures that have been plaguing SoCal these past few weeks. Plus, since I've been trying to make the most of my free time, having a go-to outfit has proved to be very convenient in enabling me to get ready and out the door as soon as possible.

Speaking of having time to spare, I've really been enjoying this extended vacation and love being able to fully enjoy my time in LA before my big move to Portland. Ever since leaving my job a little over a week ago, I've already managed to make multiple trips to the beach, take the train to Downtown LA, and visit some of my favorite coffee shops. I already know that I'm going to miss so many things once I leave, but it only means I have something to look forward to whenever I travel back home. On that note, I'll take any advice you have on how to deal with being homesick, since I already know that it's something I'll eventually experience.

xoxo,

Helen

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Monday, August 10, 2015

Little Changes

Black Cutout Dress and Lotta from Stockholm Peep Toe Clogs in Tan Angel City Brewery Shrine Mural Photos by Ale Veyna

Outfit Details:
Black Lattice Waist Cami Dress (Similar)

This dress is another gem from the mending pile I went through a couple of weeks ago. I got this dress for ridiculously cheap--I think it was about $5-- because a few stitches had become undone in the lattice detail, leaving huge holes in the waist and back. I'm sure most people deemed this dress unwearable because of this reason, but I knew better. It literally only took me about five minutes to mend this dress by hand before it was wearable again. It's such a great dress for summer because of the breathable fabric and loose fit. The best thing about this dress, in my opinion, is the lattice detail because it adds a cute touch to this simple dress and eliminates the need to add accessories. All I had to do was pair this dress with a pair of clogs before I was good to go.

Black Cutout Dress and Lotta from Stockholm Peep Toe Clogs in Tan Angel City Brewery Shrine Mural Black Cutout Dress and Lotta from Stockholm Peep Toe Clogs in Tan Angel City Brewery Shrine Mural Los Angeles Heart Street Art Angel City Brewery Black Cutout Dress and Lotta from Stockholm Peep Toe Clogs in Tan Angel City Brewery Shrine Mural I also had to include a picture of my sister Ale's outfit because it's just awesome. I love how cute she looks in a crop top paired with high-waisted jeans and Converse shoes. Black Cutout Dress and Lotta from Stockholm Peep Toe Clogs in Tan Angel City Brewery Shrine Mural My sister Ale and I headed into Downtown LA on Saturday morning to get coffee and do a bit of exploring. As we were walking around, we decided to stop and take pictures in front of this colorful mural that recently popped up on the wall of Angel City Brewery on Traction Ave. It had only been a few weeks since I had hung out in this part of town, so it was very surprising for me to see how this beautiful piece of art transformed and livened up this once gloomy corner in such short amount of time. Observing big changes like this happen in only a few weeks actually makes me kind of excited to see what will happen when I leave Los Angeles for a couple of months. It will be nice to come back and explore my home with fresh eyes after spending some time in the Pacific Northwest.

In other news, I have a very busy couple of days ahead of me since this will be my last week at my current position. Although I can't believe it's finally time for me to move on to new adventures, I'm really looking forward to "funemployment" and making the most of my last few weeks in California. Once I make it through this week, I plan to spend half my time at the beach soaking up some Vitamin D while I still can. Wish me luck!

xoxo,

Helen

P.S. If you're looking for a pretty wall where you can have a photo shoot, or if you're simply interested in looking at the entire mural featured in this post, you can check it out on the artist's Instagram @shrineon.

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Sunday, August 2, 2015

#SeeSummerBetter

Warby Parker Haskell WOodgrain Tortoise Tinted #SeeSummerBetter 3
Photos by Ale Veyna

Outfit Details:
Forever 21 Boater Hat
Denim Jacket (Old)
Asos Shorts (Old)
Crocheted Bag (Handmade by my Grandmother)
"Haskell" Sunglasses in Tortoise (Sunglasses in the picture above)

I was very excited when Warby Parker invited me to put together a post for their #seesummerbetter campaign, and highlight how I'd wear Warby Parker sunglasses this summer. I've been considering investing in a new pair of sunglasses for quite some time, and I thought that this was the perfect opportunity to look into Warby Parker's Home Try-On Program. I picked out five pairs online, and Warby Parker sent them to me for five days so that I could try them on from the convenience of my own home. 

This summer I've been really trying to make the most of my time in SoCal by making multiple trips to the beach and hanging out at my favorite local spots. For that reason, I picked out styles that fit in with my casual summer style. My sisters and I made another trip to Dana Point this weekend, and it was the perfect opportunity to try on all five Warby Parker sunglasses I picked out. 

Warby Parker See Summer Better Raglan Jet Black

On our way to the beach, we stopped by Crank and Grind, an awesome coffee shop that also doubles as a bike shop. It's very convenient because it's just off the Pacific Coast Highway on the way to Strand Beach. I don't ride bikes myself, but I've found a nice mix of cyclists and people there just to enjoy a good cup of coffee every time I've visited.

Warby Parker See Summer Better Piper Jet Black 2

I'm so glad that I've been making going to the beach a priority this summer. It's an activity that I've grown to love more now that I'm much older because it's a relaxing and inexpensive way to spend the weekend. I decided to try on the "Piper" sunglasses in jet black while I was at the beach because I thought the cat eye style of these shades looked perfect with my retro-inspired bathing suit. 

Warby Parker Haskell WOodgrain Tortoise Tinted #SeeSummerBetter 2

On our way back home from the beach, my sisters and I stopped in the Los Rios Historic District in San Juan Capistrano, so that we could grab coffee at Hidden House Coffee. We spent a few minutes in the street's Monarch Sanctuary on our way to the coffee shop in order to photograph the last few pairs of sunglasses. We had a very nice man approaches and give us suggestions for different shots while we were there, and that somehow made me feel less self-conscious about taking photos in public. 

Warby Parker Reilly Marzipan Tortoise See Summer Better #SeeSummerBetter 2 Warby Parker Reilly Marzipan Tortoise See Summer Better #SeeSummerBetter

The great thing about Warby Parker's Home Try-On Program is that you have the opportunity to try on a variety of styles before you select which one to purchase. I decided to try on the "Reilly" Sunglasses even though I didn't think they were my style, and I'm really glad I did because I love how much the pattern stands out in person. 

Warby Parker Ripley Whiskey Tortoise #SeeSummerBetter 2

I had so much fun trying on different styles of sunglasses and love them all so much I still don't know know which one I'd pick. I'd love it if you'd help me decide by letting me know which one is your favorite. Also, if you're thinking of using Warby Parker's Home Try-On Program and/or buying a pair of their sunglasses, tag your pictures with #seesummerbetter on social media so that other people can know what you're up to this summer and how you're rocking your own pair of sunglasses!


xoxo,

Helen

P.S. You might have noticed that the quality of pictures on the blog is so much clearer. That's because I've switched to uploading my photos on Flickr instead of uploading them straight to Blogger, which was making my photos seem grainy. I thought I'd spread the word in case any of you also use Blogger and are having similar issues. 

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Etsy Favorites


(Photo via Depeapa)

As someone who dreams of one day owning their own business, I think it's very important to support other entrepreneurs and small businesses. Thanks to Etsy, "shopping small" is easier than ever. However, it can be very overwhelming to browse through the endless selection of handmade and vintage items available on the site. For that reason, I want to begin highlighting some of my favorite shops on a regular basis. Keep on reading to check out some of the products and stores that have caught my eye!

DEPEAPA
I was drawn to Depeapa because of the fun illustrations on all the products available in the shop. Owner Veronica describes the shop as a way to give her "illustrations a second life," and you can find her work printed on tea towels, canvas tote bags, and even cushion covers. There are also a few illustrations available as prints if you'd rather display them as wall art. 

(Photo via Soapopotamus)
SOAPOPOTAMUS
My friend Monica gave me the cutest soap shaped like toast for Christmas last year, and I loved it so much that I had to know where to buy more, which is how I discovered Soapopotamus. The shop has a very nice selection of handmade soaps modeled after treats such as sushi, cinammon rolls and donuts

(Photo via Xtabay Vintage)

XTABAY VINTAGE
I first discovered Xtabay Vintage when I found the most beautiful hand painted skirt and top from Mexico on Pinterest. Although I found out that the dress was sold out once I clicked through to Xtabay Vintage's store, I did find many other very beautiful vintage dresses to swoon over. I have to say that most of the dresses are out of my price range, but they are all very beautiful and well worth the price. 

I was very excited to find out that Xtabay has a brick and mortar shop in Portland, so I'll have the opportunity to check out their selection in person in the near future. I'm pretty sure that I can find an excuse to save up for a 50s vintage wedding dress even though I'm not getting married any time soon. 


(Photo via Shop Apricity)

APRICITY
I was devastated when I first found out that one of my favorite indie brands, Fleet Collection, decided to close shop because I was in love with their gorgeous retro-inspired designs. Thankfully, cofounder Eileen Chai decided to open her own shop, Apricity, which has a nice selection of dresses in a similar style. My favorite design is the Sunday Dress, and I'm excited for it to be available in more colors very soon.

(Photo via Miss Shenannies)

MISS SHENNANIES
My friend Shantal has a shop called Miss Shenannies, which has the cutest accessories made out of polymer clay. I just ordered a custom strawberry ring and can't wait to show it off on the blog! If you're in love with Shantal's shop, you should also visit her awesome blog Miss Shenanigans.

I hope you enjoyed these finds and that this post has inspired you to support small businesses. Have a great rest of the week!

xoxo,

Helen

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Sunday, July 26, 2015

From the Mending Pile

Old Navy Skater Skirt Striped Shirt Madewell Ames Boots Summer Outfit-042
 Photos by Ale Veyna

Outfit Details:
Striped Shirt
Madewell Ames Boots (Similar)

Old Navy Skater Skirt Striped Shirt Madewell Ames Boots Summer Outfit-009 Old Navy Skater Skirt Striped Shirt Madewell Ames Boots Summer Outfit-043 Old Navy Skater Skirt Striped Shirt Madewell Ames Boots Summer Outfit-014 Old Navy Skater Skirt Striped Shirt Madewell Ames Boots Summer Outfit-029
I decided to go twenty-four hours without my phone this weekend and had so much free time that I'm considering doing it every week. It's amazing how much you can get done when you're not constantly checking all your social media accounts and googling useless facts. I also can't even begin to tell you how many hours I spend browsing through WebMD--I'm pretty sure that my habit of self-diagnosing myself is not helping with my anxiety. 

One of the things that I was finally able to accomplish this weekend was going through my mending pile, which had been laying on a chair in my room for the past couple of months. There were so many pieces in that pile that I felt like I had a completely new wardrobe once finally went through it. This striped top was one of the pieces that I fixed, and I can't believe that I hadn't worn it in a very long time simply for not making the time to replace a button that was missing. The pleats in the front of the shirt are very unique and I love that it's a piece that doesn't really require accessories. 

You many have noticed that I put my hair in a french braided side-chignon, which I made a tutorial for last year. This is one of my favorite hairstyles for hot summer days because it gets my hair away from my neck and it only takes 5 minutes to do. 

As always, thanks so much for reading this post! I'll keep you updated on how well I do at not using my phone as much. I'd also love to hear if any of you have done something similar and whether you found it to be helpful or not. 

xoxo,

Helen

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Friday, July 24, 2015

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Favorites

(Photo via Nordstrom)

I know I'm a bit late on this, but I've finally gotten around to picking out my favorites from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. Part of the reason that I avoided looking at this sale was because I'm desperately trying to save money and it's very hard to resist a good deal. Although I still haven't purchased anything from the sale, there are a few items that I have my eye on. However, since I'm limiting myself to only buying things that I need, I'm sure that it won't be hard to eliminate most things from my shopping cart. A girl can still dream of having all these items in her closet, right? 

Since cooler weather is just around the corner, I found myself mostly gravitating towards coats and boots as I was browsing through the sale. I particularly liked these chunky Steve Madden boots because they look very comfortable and I love the edgy style. I've also been wanting over-the-knee boots for quite some time, and this pair is such a great deal. 

If you haven't already checked out the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, don't worry because prices don't go up until August 3rd, so you still have some time to score some amazing deals! You can also click the items below to shop my favorites. 
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