A whole year has passed since I last wrote a blog post - that is crazy! The Pandemic really made time slow down, and fly by at the same time it seems. So much has changed, and I never thought I would say that I super miss going into the office and sharing a physical place and presence with coworkers. It's been a tough year trying to stay inspired in my tiny home office, but fashion waits for no one so i've had to find some sort of way. I was pregnant with hyperemesis for most of 2020 and riddled with anxiety and feelings of isolation like everyone else because of the Pandemic. I spent much of the year scared for my kids and how this would affect them, and what if they got sick? There was a lot of unknown for a long time. But now that things are starting to normalize, so am I.
One positive thing the last year has brought me is remembering how certain activities actually make me feel. And drawing inspiration from that. I ran a 1/2 marathon in April, I went to Hawaii in May with my kids to visit my husband who had temporary duty in Honolulu, and deepened my connection with old friends. Sweat, salt, sand, palm trees, breeze, warmth, and close friendship. ALL of these things make me feel happy. Happiness was also found when I pushed my blazers and blouses to the side and instead filled my closet with athletic wear that is comfortable, flattering, easy, and has now become my everyday outfit. Currently I am most impressed with Free People's line of activewear called Free People Movement.
Happy New Year! Wow, a new decade, what to do, what to do. First up for me is to find a new job. I left The North Face as of December 1, and I am partially devastated. I loved my job, my team, the brand, the product, but in this situation, I had to choose my family first. The North Face moved HQ to Denver, CO and because of my Husband's job, we could not make the move. Hard pill to swallow, but pressing on. As I stare out my new home office window at the Carquinez Straight, I think, I am so lucky, with or without dream job.
Being on the hunt for a job can make you go crazy, so to stay sane, I am going to focus on updating my portfolio, my resume, and hope the Bay Area recruiters are kind to me. I am also going to share some weird fashion. I love it so much and it makes me happy.
Feel better? I do! High fives to a new decade and re discovering my dream job - and allowing myself to be weird along the way.
One of the Key colors for the 2021 season happens to be one that looks really good on me as a Blonde, so thanks for that, trend setting world! A.I. Aqua is the name of the color and although at first glance the color feels calming and soothing, the longer you look the more it exudes energy, and is beautifully and inherently natural. But, that's just me - you decide! I am leaving the below images for you to just take a moment ... and be inspired.
One of the major trends this season is utility and multi-purpose apparel. I've been around the block a few times with needing multi use items on body because I am a Mom of 1 and a Dog Mom of 2. A little use of this, a little use of that. I basically need to pocket all things and also have access to them at all times. Here are a few of my inspirational favorites.
In my personal and professional opinion, multi-use will never go out of style. It's just in, and pretty much everybody needs it to function. Am I right? Yes.
It's Spring! And there's only one thing on my mind RN : Jumpsuits. And to explain the pun in the title of this post, jumpsuits suit me. I have a mile long torso and jumpsuits compliment me nicely. Blessing or a curse people? I say this often, because it is true. I recently took a Development trip with The North Face to Asia to review our Women's Fall 2020 samples with our suppliers. I traveled to Hong Kong, Vietnam, and Cambodia and i'm pretty sure that my long torso was mentioned everyday and in every country. We did not have a fit model with us and since I am sample size, I subbed in as the fit model, even partaking in opacity testing on our leggings. Basically I just wanted to hide in a jumpsuit the entire time. If you're in the Apparel industry, you know what opacity testing is and so you know my struggle. If anything, it was a true team building activity - am i right. Moral of this post is that i'm back in the States and ready to stalk up on all the jumpsuits. Check these beauties if you feel me - pictures are linked.
I've had a lot of disruption in the last year with leaving my job at Timberland, moving to California, getting settled in California, and waiting for the right and next career move. I had 7 months where I didn't go into an office, instead I worked on various freelance private label projects, organized from our move, agonized over getting my son in the right daycare situation, and wrapped up our insurance claims from our house fire in May. With all of that going on, I managed to spend some of the best months with my son, watching him go from crawl to run (and he hasn't stopped running), go from giggles to full on belly laughs and saying "Dada" "Duck" and " Dog" - hoping "Mama" is next! I literally soaked up every moment and it still went too fast. In January I had to let go of all of our special time together to start what is my dream role in my dream company. I find myself on Cloud 9 most days, but some days I feel 100% guilty. It's not that I need to work, it's that I want to. I am passionate about Apparel, passionate about Women's involvement in sports and I get to focus on those two subjects every day in my job. It's such a tough balancing act. I've read all the books that say " You can work AND be the best Mom ever." Which ok, but that doesn't help with my feelings of guilt. What makes this worse is that my son over the last 3 weeks is going through a phase where he doesn't want me to leave him. When I drop him off at daycare in the morning, he tightens his little arms around my neck, presses his little cheek into mine, and cries. My son barely ever cries, so it breaks my heart. I know it is a phase and it will hopefully pass soon, but having to unwrap his little arms from holding me, because I want to go to work, breaks my heart. I will have to let go of these feelings of guilt, I know that much. What better way to do that than to focus on shoes. Combat boots are here and are so cool. Here are some of my faves, pictures are linked!
Let's talk belt bags. It's a trend coming back around for another spin, much like trends do. But this one is special to me because it blends two key accessories and brings with it past and present details. It's sort of like a fanny pack, but a little more stable, and little less embarrassing. The belt bag holds a place in high fashion and is starting to peek into activewear which makes me love this versatile style even more. Here are some of my favorites on the market right now. Each picture is linked.
I recently whispered to my husband that maybe I should get a fanny pack for when we walk our two dogs and have our baby in the stroller. Someone always needs something (treats, poop bags, baby crackers) and how nice would it be to not reach further than my hips to accommodate everyone? Well, i'm ready to take my whisper to a much louder octave and say, YES PEOPLE. Yes to belt bags.
It's been super hot in the Bay Area so I can't exactly break out my sweaters and scarves and be good to go like I would if we still lived in New England. Fall is a just a little warmer this year. However, I won't for one second complain about where we live, so adapt I will. I recently popped into Tootsies Boutique in Alameda for some local inspo and found the perfect 90 degree day outfit (lol) to bring our son to Speer Family Farms Pumpkin Patch in Alameda Point.
This Pleione Scallop Hem Cardigan was the perfect Olive color and style for a hot Fall day. Also these super cute Lucky Brand booties are the most comfortable, and pair with almost everything making them them the perfect Fall color. Tootsies has multiple locations around the Bay area and they will literally Uber-deliver your order if you need it ASAP. Love that local vibe. Yas please. #shoplocal
Accessories complete me. Well, there are other things too, but there is just nothing like a good accessory to tie an outfit together or set the stage for making your day easier. By this I mean, I have 2 dogs, 1 baby, and 1 husband, I need things to carry things and do things and I need a lot of them. Bags aside, sometimes it's just easy to throw on simple jeans and a T and a fun accessory and boom I look halfway put together after one of those up-all-night-my-baby-is-teething situations. Here is my 2018 round up of my favorite picks for Fall.
1. TARGET // Rowan Cognac Backpack // This color is my favorite for Fall, it's versatile, goes with most and is a sleek silhouette. Also, under $35. Who can argue with that.
2. THE NORTH FACE // BTTFB Backpack // This color is just as fresh and clean as the exterior and interior design. This backpack is a bit more pricey but it's worth it for the laptop sleeve, unisex look, and compartments for all my stuff and things. I'd commute all day with this bag. Joking, But I do love this style.
3. ATHLETA // Caraa Weekender Bag // I love the puff situation of this material and the shoulder strap. I often have my son's diaper bag on my back, so this shape is best for my personal things. Which actually end up being everybody's things. Mom life.
4. ATHLETA // Techno Run Cap // Style this up or down, wear it running or pair it with a cream sweater, skinny jeans, and high boots. Good or bad hairday, this one is a W. It is reflective too, so just try not to see me I dare you.
5. NEFF // Rose 2 Beanie // Always a fav brand of mine when it comes to Knits. Love this color and contrast yarn.
6. NORDSTROM // Richer Poorer Cheetah Ankle Socks // I am dying to wear these with my new taupe ankle boots I bought (more on those later). There is just something about a sheer sock that feels very bougie and not so ... socky. I don't know, you get it. If you don't, try these and then tell me all your thoughts.
When it comes to my face, and the products I use on it, I err on the side of minimal. Less is more is what they say and for me, nothing rings more true. I have been known to fit in a surf session before work or, going way back, before class. Salty beach curls was how I let my hair lay and a layer of waterproof mascara was all she wrote. Now that I am a new Mom, I don't have the time in the morning anymore to fit in a few waves, or for that matter, spend time putting makeup on my face. I need easy, I need fast, and I need to look sort of cool. (My number one fear in life right now is, am I a cool Mom, or no?). I connected with an old classmate of mine who is a consultant for @beautycounter and a Mom as well. So naturally, I was like, help me.
@beautycounter products pride themselves on being free of harmful chemicals. Our skin is our largest organ and absorbs what we put on it. Lotions, sunscreen, foundation, perfume etc. all get absorbed into our bodies from our skin. Without regulations, thousands of harmful ingredients are allowed in our everyday products with no one pumping the breaks. I'm a big believer in anything in moderation, you can't worry all day long about every little thing, but my face and my skin is one thing that I will worry about and that I will prioritize because you know, it's sort of important.
So I linked up with Jackie, told her my woes, and she hooked me up in a major way. Below are my picks and thoughts, and I'm not just saying this to say this but I am hooked. Also, the package everything came in was adorable, I am a big fan of attention to detail, people.
1. Charcoal Cleansing Bar: It clarifies, detoxifies, and absorbs impurities from skin for a brighter and smoother complexion. It also removes makeup and can be used anywhere on the body. Also, it lasts FOREVER. My husband and I both tried this, and it makes your skin feel SO good.
2. Adaptive Moisture Lotion (face): This lightweight face lotion hydrates skin throughout the day to provide 24 hours of hydration. Great for sensitive skin!
3. Cleansing Balm: This is a 20 in 1 product. It can be used as a hydrating and brightening overnight mask, an oil based cleanser, scar treatment, lip balm, eye cream, sunburn elixir, split-end hair treatment, the list goes on and on. A little bit truly goes a long way. The jar lasts most people well over a year. *New Mom MUST.
4. Dew Skin Moisturizing Coverage: This is a tinted moisturizer that delivers lightweight hydration, a hint of sheer coverage, SPF 20 protection, and gives your skin a glowing effect. SPF in my products is a MUST living in California. Not to brag, but it's sunny ALL the time, and that takes a toll quickly.
5. Cream Blusher in Hibiscus: If you like a pop of color on your lips this blusher can be used on your cheeks and lips. I LOVE this color. I just put a little on my finger tips, dot it around the apples on my cheeks, dot it on my lips, and then circle back to the apples of my cheeks to blend it in. This shade literally goes with everything!
6. Lip Conditioner in Calandula: Lightweight and hydrating - I use chapstick every single day so this was a fave of mine. It is made with avocado oil, Shea butter, meadowfoam seed oils, and jojoba oil. It also comes in peppermint.
7. Countersun Mineral Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 30: My husband and I tried an "organic" sunscreen earlier in the summer and we both got burnt SO bad. I said never again will we not use Banana Boat, but this product is lightweight, water-resistant, and smells great. It even stayed on evenly when I went for a run. Formulated with non-nano zinc oxide, is anti-oxydent-rich, and never uses Octinoxate or Oxybenzone. All high spf sunscreen has oxybenzone, the known endocrine disrupter and ingredient banned in Hawaii for reef damage. Who knew, seriously.
Thank you Jackie / @beautycounter ... you have changed the way I think about using skin products and thank you for helping me with my easy/fast/cool problems. xoxo
Designer. Writer. Provoker…of all things life and trend worthy.