white bow tank + celebrating pride month as an ally

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Tank | Skirt (similar)

I'm so happy to be celebrating Pride Month 2018 as a proud ally of the LGBTQ community. I can't tell you how much my LGBTQ friends mean to me and how grateful I am for how much the community as a whole has contributed to our world. 

Both J.Crew and Madewell are celebrating Pride Month with their LoveFirst and LoveToAll campaigns. They've come out with special merchandise for the month and are donating 50% of purchase price to the Human Rights Campaign. If you pop into their stores, there are some free promotional items like stickers, flags, and tote bags that you can pick up as well. 

Side note, Queer Eye season two is out today! What a perfect way to celebrate Pride Month.

how to look expensive

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Every once in awhile, there's an article about looking high-end and in the comments section, people always say things like "how to look expensive = be rich/buy expensive clothes". I'm here to say that, yes, having enough disposable income to buy whatever you want does give you a leg up in this area however it is a) not necessary and b) not always effective.

Like let's be honest (and no offense), I've seen plenty of celebrities wearing expensive items that look incredibly cheap because they're either too trendy or just weren't styled properly. I'm sure you've noticed the same! And you know, looking expensive isn't necessarily always the goal and that's fine!

But, if you do want to build a quality wardrobe that makes you look and feel more sophisticated, you can do so without filling your wardrobe strictly with Chloé, Prada, and Chanel. Here are a few of my tips:

Dress in a tonal palette.
I'm all for color and you can certainly pull off a multi-colored, rainbow look if you do it right. However, an easy way to make your look more sophisticated is to use a tonal color palette. This just means selecting different shades in the same color family (i.e. cream, beige, and camel or lemon, buttercup, and saffron). You can do all solids or throw in prints, so long as they're all in the same family. Some of my favorite examples are here on Aimee Song and here on Shiona Turini

Play well with texture.
Especially if you're dressing in a tonal palette (but also if you're not), adding layers of texture is key to a beautiful outfit. Let's say you're wearing head-to-toe shades of white. You could do white denim skinnies and gray/white snakeskin leather shoes, then layer in textured pieces like a chunky knit sweater and a taupe suede bag. Some examples here, here, here, and here.

Opt for a structured bag.
Another quick tip is simply to choose structured handbags to pair with your outfits. See how much more luxe this bag looks versus this one? The first was under $90 while the second was Prada. 

Pay attention to the details.
This encapsulates a few things I've already mentioned like choosing luxe textures and pairing tonal colors together, but it can also refer to accessories, styling, makeup, fragrance, and basic grooming choices. Putting together a solid look and looking high-end both require a sense of balance and artful intention. Make sure your clothing is steamed, keep your nails taken care of, drape your jacket over the shoulders, wear classic sturdy jewelry pieces, get your clothes tailored if needed, and keep your hair/makeup natural. 

Invest in your denim.
Obviously the quality of cheap denim is subpar but sometimes you just want a trendy pair of jeans and don't care if they fall apart after a year. However, I know I've personally attempted to buy cheaper pairs of trendy denim from places like Old Navy and H&M and have been so disappointed in the fit that I couldn't move forward with the purchase. Buying quality denim means so much more than just getting a higher quality material. The amount of work and detail that goes into a pair of premium jeans means that you're likely going to get a more flattering fit for your body and ultimately look more expensive. Some brands I love are Madewell, AG, Paige and J Brand.

Wear the proper undergarments.
This really is a huge key to looking put together. Choosing the right undergarment as well as being fitted for your proper size will make a major difference in the way your clothes look on your body. StitchFix has a solid guide, but definitely make an appointment at a lingerie shop if you can!

Know how to embrace modern trends.
if you wear a trendy print (like gingham, candy stripes, bold tartans, rainbow, tropical, art-inspired, etc.), wear it in a classic silhouette. If you want to wear a daring silhouette, do it in a neutral, classic material and color (like this, for instance). 

Choose a shoe with a pointed toe.
This is a quick and easy tip. In most cases, a pointed toe looks more high-end and is much more flattering on the leg than a round toe. 

FOR INSPIRATION:
Meghan Markle, Duchess of Cambridge, Olivia Palermo, Olivia Culpo, Crown Princess Mary of Denmark, Queen Letizia of Spain, Carla Bruni, Jeanne Damas, Alicia Vikander, Gwyneth Paltrow, Sofia Coppola, Catherine Deneuve, Kerry Washington, Carine Roitfeld, Amal Clooney, Gabrielle Union.

wellness wednesday: cute workout clothes to get you motivated

Happy Wellness Wednesday!

I've been doing the Tone It Up bikini series since May 7th and am really loving this round! I've done the series before but this time around, I'm feeling really motivated and excited about getting up to do the workouts each day.

I swear, a cute outfit always makes me more motivated to do my workouts, whether they're at home or at the gym. Over the years, so many brands have popped up in the activewear space and it seems like more and more cute options are in the shops every time I look. 

I did a little round-up of cute workout clothes that will get you motivated for your workout. They're also perfect for summer with a neutral, sort-of bohemian color palette and featured a . beautiful assortment of patterns. 

pretty things no. 13

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Happy Cinco de Mayo, everyone! I'm so excited for the little fiesta we're having later tonight with homemade tacos, tortilla chips, guacamole, and watermelon agua fresca. Of course, there will be a fantastic playlist, as well! I hope you all have something fun planned, too. In the meantime, here are this weekend's pretty picks.

Have you seen Sarah Vickers Patrick's new Sarah Patrick dress line for KJP? If not, go look now because the pieces are gorgeous! I'm especially partial to this freshly squeezed print which features the cutest lemonade motif.

Speaking of super cute things, I can't get enough of the new J.Crew swimsuits! This navy ric-rac set is too adorable!

Loeffler Randall has your perfect summer bag. It's an on-trend round straw bag, but it has tassel and pom-pom details that make it a standout piece. How cute would this bag look with a white t-shirt and worn-in jeans?

In honor of Cinco de Mayo, I have to share the Carry-On Cocktail Kit's margarita kit. This kit for two includes equipment, margarita syrup, and rimming salt to make a margarita on your next flight. All you need is to add tequila!

I've been seeing this style of knotted sandals a lot recently but especially love this pair from Soludos. The chambray would look so pretty with a white summer dress or the simple jeans outfit I mentioned above.

How beautiful are these Rebecca Minkoff earrings? They're certainly a statement, but I love that the navy color keeps things toned down and makes them a great fit for someone with a classic wardrobe who wants a little something fun for summer.