Weekend adventures and birthday present to myself

Friday, February 28, 2014

Layers are key to a travel outfit
Jacket: old Anthropologie but similar here, Vest: J. Crew, Shirt: J. Crew, Belt: J. Crew, Jeans: JBrand, Boots: Bed Stu
Hello wonderful readers! I hope all is well with you :) You will never guess where I am writing this- the Eurostar on the way to Paris! We will be in Paris all day today, tomorrow, and we leave Sunday morning. I am very excited because not only will I be in Paris during Paris Fashion Week (!!!!) but I haven't been to Paris in seven years and I am very excited to go back. I think today we are just going to hang out and enjoy being away and tomorrow I am planning on spending the entire day in the Louvre! I am going to be art nerding out and I can't wait. Otherwise, I'm expecting this to be a quiet, relaxing weekend in Paris.
In other news, I bought myself a birthday present yesterday and it was very fun! Buying yourself gifts is definitely a form of therapy :) Anyways, I bought this beautiful Cambridge Satchel with my initials embossed. The icing on the cake was that the bag was on clearance because of a micro scratch I can't even see! Basically the perfect gift and the perfect situation. More on Paris adventures tomorrow XO 

Birthday Present

First crepe in Paris

How to...rock fur

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Hey guys! I was feeling inspired and decided to write a "how to" post for the Her Campus blog I write for. My editor decided she didn't need the article so I thought I would post it here! Enjoy xo

How to… rock fur
Fur used to only be for the very wealthy upper crust and for a while, it was a taboo. However, fur is back and easy for everyone to rock! You definitely don’t have to wear real fur- that is a personal decision ethically and fiscally, but either way fake fur is just as cool and warm. So here are some tips on how to incorporate fur into your wardrobe in fun and easy ways!

Tip 1: Wear a fur vest as another layer instead of a cardigan. First of all, if you are going to wear fur, I would definitely go with a vest. They are super easy to wear and they aren’t overwhelming. If you are having trouble finding ways to wear your vest, just pretend it is a cardigan! Throw it on over a button down with a scarf and spruce up a regular outfit.

Tip 2: Wearing fur as a cardigan is a great first step and amazing for transitioning in fall and spring. However, what should you do when it gets colder? Easy, throw a coat on over your fur. It will act as an extra layer of warmth, and because it is only a vest, it won’t be uncomfortable under your coat.
Tip 3: If wearing the vest as an extra layer under your jacket isn’t your thing, or isn’t comfortable, put your fur over your jacket! I normally try and make the bottom layer about the same length as the top layer or not too much longer. This would be another good trick for transition periods, where you don’t necessarily want that thick coat, but you want another layer.

Tip 4: Fur can be a great way to dress up an outfit. It is very easy to say that fur is only formal or laid-back. However, there is a definite in-between. Whether going to work or out to a nice dinner, a fur vest can be the perfect layer to add that extra oomph to an outfit. Fur very nicely offsets sequins and patterns. It would also be easy to belt over a maxi dress.

Tip 5: You don’t only have to wear fur as a layer of warmth. It can also be a great accessory. You could have a fur pom-pom on a hat, fur detail on a coat or gloves, or a fur hat. Either way the fur adds that little bit of edgy luxury to any outfit!

Happy happy birthday!!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Chocolate cheesecake cupcake
Coat: TopShop, Sweater: J.Crew, Shirt: J.Crew, Jeans: J Brand, Shoes: TopShop, Jewelry: J.Crew, JewelMint, Kate Spade (similar here), Kate Spade (gift from my family!) 
Hello wonderful readers! Guess what?! Today is my 20th birthday! I am very excited and have already had a wonderful day. For once, it was beautiful and sunny here in London. It was even in the 60s for a while! Amazing weather for this time of year and maybe all for me :) It has been a busy day too because we had class and a museum visit. However, after all of the school stuff, Kenz and I went to a cafe for tea and to pick up paninis for dinner. When I arrived back to the house, I discovered 2 dozen cupcakes Mom had delivered! They are absolutely delicious and I am going to have to explore the cafe they are from, Hummingbird. Have a wonderful rest of your day! XO 

Rome Day Two!

Saturday, February 22, 2014

The Colosseum from the inside ground floor

Our adorable lunch restaurant! 

Trevi Fountain
The Pantheon during the day
Piazza Navona and Bernini's Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi
Wow, I forgot how amazing Rome is! I had been to Rome twice before, but it's been about four years since the last time. Rome is an amazing city- you can walk down any road and discover a stunning fountain like this Bernini or a beautiful church. Everything is incorporated into the city and it is like a scavenger hunt discovering everything! 
Yesterday, we started with the Colosseum. I had already been before, but it is still breathtaking. It is amazing to think that this building was built hundreds of years ago and is still standing and is still a source of entertainment. From the Colosseum we wandered over to the Trevi Fountain for lunch. We ate at this adorable cafe with personal lace umbrellas on the all of the seats. It felt like we had just walked out of Three Coins in a Fountain! Lunch was bruschetta, pizza, and bolognese- yummy yummy. After taking our required tourist pictures at the Trevi and throwing our coins, we walked over to the Pantheon. Our flat is close to the Pantheon so we just explored that area and Piazza Navona for a while.
We returned to the flat for siesta where I caught up on some much needed House of Cards! The new season has started to get really good! We had dinner at this awesome restaurant in Piazza Navona. We  had more bruschetta, pasta with tomato sauce, four cheese gnocchi, this chocolate truffle thing, and tiramisu. Yesterday was definitely our best food day! 
Today was a much more laid back day as our last vacation day. We just wandered around our neighborhood, had a two hour lunch in Piazza Navona, and checked out the Spanish Steps. Sadly the Spanish Steps' fountain is being restored so there wasn't a lot to see other than the steps themselves. We are planning on just wandering until we find a restaurant for dinner :) I can't wait to come back to Rome for an entire month this summer!! I am already excited :) XO 

Our first full day in Rome

Friday, February 21, 2014

St. Peter's Dome

The altar in St. Peter's Basilica

School of Athens by Raphael 

Pieta by Michelangelo 

We found these awesome orange trees in one of the Vatican courtyards! 

Our view of the Pantheon at dinner 
Hello! I have so much to talk about! So Wednesday, we took the fast train from Florence to Rome, and man was it cool! The seats were so comfy and a trip that normally takes two plus hours only took an hour and a half- it was lots of fun :) Once we arrived in Rome, we grabbed some paninis for lunch and went to our Air BnB flat. I must say, Kenz did a great job finding our flat because we are a stone's throw away from the Pantheon! We just hung out Wednesday afternoon, took our regular siesta, and then found a lovely restaurant down the street for dinner. It was an amazing first big meal...we had bruschetta, spaghetti bolognese, and four cheese gnocchi! We even grabbed some gelato on the way home :) All around a great day.
Yesterday was a very busy day. We woke up pretty early and walked over to the Vatican. We spent almost all day in the Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel, and St. Peter's Basilica. The Vatican Museums were chock full of stuff- it was a never ending labyrinth of history, which was a lot of fun. We even saw Raphael's School of Athens and it was absolutely breathtaking! Fun fact about Raphael, he was left handed :) Sistine Chapel was amazing and a must see when visiting Rome, but sadly they don't allow pictures so I can't show you any...more motivation for you to come visit it your self! Anyways, we ended with the Basilica, which is an amazing piece of architecture. They used all of this colored marble inside and it looks amazing. It was very cool to see the Pieta and all of the other amazing art inside. In addition, there were musicians practicing in the balconies so we were serenaded with this beautiful music while we were walking around. 
The Vatican is definitely an all day attraction. We got there around ten (definitely buy your tickets online, it will save you a world of pain) and left around three. Of course we didn't actually get home till 4-ish because we got extremely lost, but it was a fun adventure. We just hung out until dinner and then ate at this adorable restaurant in the Pantheon square. We had an amazing view and it was fun to people watch. I also had some of the best tiramisu I have ever had! 
So a couple of other things other than my travels. You might have noticed the new ads on the bottom of the page. Don't worry about them if you don't want, they won't affect my posts or anything like that. However, you might want to check out ShopLately because they have some really cute stuff for very reasonable prices! Have a wonderful day :) XO 

Firenze Day Two

Thursday, February 20, 2014

First cup of tea in Italy and it was pretty awesome

Pizza for brunch :) 

With some awesome lions outside Uffizi Gallery

View of the Arno from Uffizi Gallery

Rocking outfit in Firenze

Remember that boar from Greenville? This is the original

Firenze Duomo

Probably the best carbonara I have ever had
Firenze (aka Florence) day two and man was it cool! We had a little bit of a lazy morning, but isn't that the point of vacation? We wandered around and decided to have our morning caffeine with some pizza in the Piazza del Duomo. For a cup of tea in a coffee drinking country, my tea was surprisingly good and they even offered me lemon, my favorite! 
The night before, while skyping my family, my dad mentioned that February 18, our second day in Firenze, was the 450th anniversary of Michelangelo's death. Now if know anything about Michelangelo, you will know that Florence was his city and the Florentines take full credit for him. Knowing this, my dad said there might be some kind of memorial or something, and man ways he ever right! While we were enjoying our tea and pizza, we hear drums in the distance and all of a sudden, this parade with drums and horns and people in period costumes cones marching through the square! I can't confirm that they were for the anniversary, but it is a nice thought :)
After brunch, we explored the Duomo itself, which was absolutely breathtaking. Sadly we were not able to go into the baptistery because of restoration reasons or something. Anyways, after hanging out in the Duomo for a while, we wandered over to the Uffizi Gallery- one of Florence's main art museums. The Uffizi Gallery just happens to be right off of the Palazzo Vecchio so we were able to see Michelangelo's David, or at least the copy, and drop into the H&M to buy a birthday dress before our appointed time at Uffizi. The Uffizi Gallery is a must see in Florence. Unfortunately, a good portion of it is being restored, but we were still able to see so much! We saw Botticelli's Birth of Venus and Spring. We also saw a lot of works that I had studied in my art history course last semester! It was really fun to be able to go around the gallery and tell Kenzie about the works :)
From Uffizi, we continued to wander around and explore until we ran into a statue of a boar. Remember this summer when I went to Greenville and saw that boar that gave you luck? Well this was the original! It was really exciting to see and I had completely forgotten it was here! Anyways, I hope it will bring me as much good luck as the one in Greenville did :)
We decided to be very Italian and after exploring and eating our gelato, we headed back to the hotel for a siesta! We then met one of Kenzie's friends from high school and I had some of the best carbonara ever for dinner! 
We are in Rome now and headed to the Vatican today! I will hopefully have enough internet tonight to post not only third, but also a Vatican post :) we will see! Until then XO

Budapest Layover and Firenze Day One

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Kenz and I taking selfies at dinner

First course- crostini with chicken liver, gorgonzola, mushrooms, and tomato and mozzarella 

Second course- Caprese Salad

Third Course- Penne with chunky tomato sauce

Enjoying some gelato after dinner

Kenz and I celebrating our first night in Italy with Proseco 
Hello! So just a little preview of what is going to happen over the next couple of days... Obviously there is this post about this past Sunday and Monday. Then, there will be another post about yesterday, but there were too many pictures to have only one post! Once in Rome, I will probably post everyday if possible so all the pictures are spread out! 
Anyways, back to the fun stuff! Picking up from when I last talked to you, I was on the train from Prague to Budapest then and I am now on the train from Florence to Rome! I must say, trains are very conducive to writing blog posts :) So on Sunday, our train was sadly delayed for over an hour so by time we arrive in Budapest, it was already late afternoon and beginning to rain. We didn't really get to see any sites, just checked into our Air BnB and grabbed some dinner. 
We left pretty early in the morning Monday for Pisa, and then Rome. Sadly, we didn't get to stay in Pisa other than to grab the train to Rome because  I was not feeling so well :( We were easily able to find the train to Firenze and made it to our hotel around three in the afternoon. We then took a lovely siesta (aka nap time) and woke up in time for dinner. We wandered out of our hotel looking for a little local restaurant. We didn't really know what part of town we were in or if we were close to anything, but our questions were soon answered when we ran into the Duomo on the way to dinner! We were basically in the heart of the city center! Go McKenzie and her amazing hotel booking skills :) We finally found an adorable restaurant and order some fun dishes to share for dinner! I can't wait to tell you about my amazing day yesterday! XO 

Prague in 56 hours, the tourist way

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Wow, Prague is awesome- I forgot how much I loved old cities. Even though London is an old city, you don't always get that old world feel. However, you definitely get it in Prague with all of the cobblestone streets and St. Vitus Cathedral looking down from the hill top. I also thought Prague was a little overrated, but it really does some have beautiful sights!
Friday, we woke up extremely early to see the sun rise from the Charles Bridge. There was too much cloud cover to see the sun, but we were the only ones on the bridge! It was amazing. If you have ever been to Prague, you know how busy the Charles Bridge is with tourists, vendors, and artists. It was quite a feat that we were the only ones there. From the Bridge, we walked up the hill to the Prague Castle complex. Of course, on the way we had to stop at a Starbucks for our daily caffeine fix :) Don't judge me, there weren't any local cafes open yet! We didn't actually go into the castle, but walked around the complex and explored the Cathedral before making our way back to the flat. Friday night, we watched the first episode of House of Cards Season 2. If you don't already watch House of Cards, put it on your to-do list because it is one of the best written shows out there.
Yesterday, we were super touristy and went on a walking tour. We started in the Old Town Square with the Astronomical Clock. Everyone says that the clock is an over glorified attraction and I agree that the puppet show isn't anything too exciting. However, what the clock actually can do is amazing. It measures time in there different ways, date, astrological symbol, and vernal equinox- pretty awesome considering that 3/4s of the parts are original. Anyways, we walked from the Old Town Square to the New Town square, then the Jewish Quarter. It was a really great to see the city and all of the sights. After the tour, we dropped by the Lennon Wall and then crashed at a cafe for caffeine and crepes. For dinner, we went to a beer hall and had traditional Czech food, which was really fun! Now, I am on a train to Budapest! We will not even be in Budapest for 24 hours, but it should be awesome and I can't wait to go to Pisa from there! XO
The Charles Bridge right after sunrise

View of St. Vitus Cathedral from the Charles Bridge 

View of Prague from Prague Castle 

St. Vitus Cathedral

The Astronomical Clock

Liebster Nomination and Spring Break!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Hello all! I have lots of exciting news- first, I was nominated for a Liebster award by Madi from C'est la Moot. This is very exciting and I will explain more in a minute. Secondly, I am currently blogging from Prague!! I am on spring break with three other study abroad students and we are going to be traveling to Prague, Budapest, Pisa, Florence, and Rome over the next ten days! Very exciting I know, and hopefully I will have internet so I can keep y'all updated on my adventures! 
Ok so back to the Liebster Award. When Madi nominated me, I had no idea what it was, but the idea behind it is bloggers recognizing other bloggers who don't necessarily have a large following. A great idea if I do say so myself :) Anyways, here is what you have to do if nominated... post 11 random facts about you, answer the 11 questions posted by the person who nominated you, and nominated 11 other bloggers. So here goes! XO

11 Random Facts...

1. I am left handed and that is where the name of my blog comes from. 
2. I am currently studying abroad in London and having an absolutely fabulous time. 
3. I am a tea addict- I drink lots of iced tea at home and probably two or more cups of hot tea per day.
4. My most daring fashion risk was getting my pixie cut two years ago. 
5. My girl crush is Carey Mulligan- she is an amazing actress and has a great sense of style.
6. I'm obsessed with everything Sherlock Holmes especially the books. 
7. I am a big reader and my favorite book is tied between Bleak House by Charles Dickens and Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte.
8.My younger sister is my best friend and she is awesome. Hopefully she will be featured on the blog a little more this summer before she goes off to college! 
9. I love discovering and watching watching new TV shows and movies.
10. I love traveling and going abroad, but my favorite part of traveling is always coming home.
11. I am definitely a cat person. I like dogs, but I love cats. 

11 Questions posed by Madi...

1. What is your best childhood memory? My mom is an attorney and sometimes has to go to court. One time, she needed a new suit for court so we drove 45 minutes to the closest Nordstroms. It was my first trip to Nordstroms and I was in awe. We went up to the women's section and started picking out a black suit. I remember going up to her and saying, in all seriousness, Mom, you need to buy more color- your wardrobe is boring. This is my first memory of really caring and being interested in fashion. Plus every time my mom laughs at my outfit choices, I remind her of this event :)
2. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why? If I could live anywhere in the world, I would live in London. It is a huge metropolitan city and has all of the hustle and bustle that comes with that, but it also has the slower paced sections like any European city. I love that you can go to all of these amazing museums and historical sites and still be within walking distance of a tiny hole-in-the-wall cafe. 
3. If you had to be an animal, what would you choose? I would choose to be a hippopotamus. They are beautiful, majestic creatures that are on the top of the food chain. Also they get the best of both worlds by living in the water and sometimes on land. Plus, I think they are cute. 
4. Regardless of how realistic or unrealistic, what is your dream job? My dream job is a little complicated, so bear with me. I would want to be the editor of a major magazine and then open a boutique. This store would be part coffee/tea cafe, part clothing boutique, part book store, and part art gallery. I would also like to continue blogging on a a bigger scale. 
5. If you had to read one book, listen to one song, and watch one movie for the rest of forever, what would you choose? I would read Bleak House because not only is it one of my favorite books, but it also is so long that you get something different out of it every time. I would listen to “This will be” by Natalie Cole, which is by far my favorite song. Finally, I would watch When Harry met Sally, which is my favorite movie.
6. What is your must have/ go to beauty product? I always wear Burt’s Bees Chapstick and Dita Von Teese liquid eyeliner. 
7. If you could witness any major event in history, what would it be and why? I would witness Elizabeth I giving a speech to the British troops before the attack of the Spanish Armada (I am a huge history buff). This was a great historical turning point for Elizabeth as Queen and England as a world power. I would really like to witness this event because it was a time when a monarch was able to empower their troops and that monarch happened to be a woman. It showed how powerful a female monarch could be and that not only men, but also women, could be great leaders. 
8. What kinds of food do you enjoy? What kinds do you hate? I love Italian food- I will eat almost all Italian food. I am kind of picky, but the big things I don’t like are potatoes and cold sandwiches. 
9. If you had to lose one sense for a year, what would you be willing to part with? I would give up hearing because I think it would be very interesting to learn sign language and to learn more about the deaf community. I also think I would come back with a huge appreciation for sound. 
10. What is the most beautiful thing you’ve seen in nature? The most beautiful thing I have ever seen in nature is the fjords in Norway. 
11. If a movie was being made about your life, who would you choose to portray you? I would choose either Carey Mulligan or Lily Collins.

And finally, the 11 blogs I nominate and my questions for them...

1. Jordan @ Worrellwind Adventures
2. Alicia @ River City Chic
3. Miranda @ Mermade Moments
4. Laura @ Baking in Pajamas 
5. Barbara @ Butter and Baggage
6. Rania @ Excuse Denied
7. Dominique @ That One Sorority Girl
10. Leigha @ Minougirl
11. Jacqueline @ Pretti Please


1. What are you currently obsessed with?
2.If you could travel to any one country, where would you go and why?
3. How do you come up with ideas on what to write about?
4. Can you explain the name of your blog?
5. What is your favorite fashion style or trend?
6. If you had superpowers, what would they be and why?
7. What’s one piece of advice you would tell the “old you”?
8. What is your dream job, regardless of how realistic or unrealistic?
9. If you had to read one book, listen to one song, and watch one movie for the rest of your live, what would you choose?
10. If you could witness any major even in history, what would it be, and why?
11. If a movie was being made about your life, who would you choose to portray you? 

Cafe Crawl

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Necklace: J.Crew, Sweater: J.Crew- not the same but still cool, Jeans: Red Engine, Shoes: Topshop

So in London there is something called a pub crawl where you go from pub to pub on a certain road or in a certain area. I was thinking about this idea, which sounds really fun, and decided to go on a cafe crawl. I started at the corner of one street and made my way through three different cafes over the course of the day! It was very fun, I discovered two new cafes, and had some excellent food! I started at Chamomile Cafe that I posted about earlier. I had a cup of earl grey (my favorite tea) and a chocolate croissant, which was absolutely delicious! Then I went to the Black Truffle Cafe, right next to Chamomile. The picture is the inside of Black Truffle. I ate lunch here and had a delicious panini on ciabatta with prosciutto, mozzarella, tomatoes, and basil. Let me tell you, this was one of the best sandwiches I have had in quite some time! Finally, I ended at Cinnamon Cafe. I had toast and earl grey again at Cinnamon. It was so homey there and definitely a great place to enjoy a good book or do some homework. Today was a great day of exploring and I can't wait to see what I'll do this week! XO


Thursday, February 6, 2014

Hey guys! Yesterday was my 200th post and I didn't even notice!!! How exciting! Anyways, no outfit post right now, but check out this awesome video of Bastille performing Pompeii acoustically! Have a great day XO

Navy and pink layers

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Yesterday was such a fun day because we only had one afternoon class. So in the morning, my friend McKenzie and I hung out at Chamomile Cafe again. It was so fun- I really felt like a local, which I guess I am! I also had a wonderful chocolate croissant :) Last night we also went to an interactive theatre performance, called The Drowned Man. You don't have seats and there isn't a set timeline or anything. You just wander around this huge theatre complex and follow around actors and see different scenes. It was an amazing experience and so interesting. If you have a chance to do something like this, I would definitely try it! Today was busy with classes and rain, but we are going to see War Horse tonight! I am so excited! XO 

Coat: Topshop, Vest: J.Crew, Sweater: J.Crew, Shirt: J.Crew, Jeans: JBrand, Shoes: Topshop, Bag: Longchamp, Necklace: J.Crew, Jewelry: Baublebar, Kiel James Patrick, Anthropologie- I know these are actually hair ties, but I got really sparkly ones so I could add them to my jewelry stack, Michael Kors, JewelMint

Chinese New Year and a new cafe

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Hello all! This week has already been so exciting and it's only Tuesday! On Sunday, I celebrated Chinese New Years with the rest of the students here. It was very exciting! The celebration took over the entirety of Trafalgar Square and the roads were blocked all the way into China Town! We also saw one of those human dragon parade things, but I only caught the tail end of it by time I got my camera out. Either way, it was a very fun experience.

Also on Sunday, I discovered a new cafe called the Chamomile Cafe! It was very family friendly and had a great atmosphere. The good tea and food was just the icing on the cake! Did I mention that they even have free wifi?! Just picture me blogging there because that is where I will probably write most of my posts for the rest of the semester. 

Finally, yesterday, we went and explored Brick Lane. It was very fun with lots of vintage stores, Indian food, and street art. We found some awesome vintage markets that  I will hopefully be checking out soon! We also discovered some very creative food trucks. My favorite was definitely the Southern Fried Chicken Truck named Mother Clucker. It will hopefully be open when I go to the vintage markets so I can tell you about the food :)

I can't wait for the rest of this week and possibly more fun adventures! XO 

Glasses: The View on Elm, Shirt: J.Crew- this is the closest I could find, Sweater: Stolen from my mom's closet, but this one is pretty similar, Coat: Barbour, Purse: Longchamp- I don't think I could live without this bag in London, Jeans: J Brand- I know it looks like I wear the same pants everyday, but I actually have three pairs of these! Yes, they are that awesome, Boots: Bed Stu

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