Friday, March 24, 2017

The Perfect Spring Top ft. Zaful

Happy spring! Monday was officially the first day of spring and I am beyond excited for the changing season. My heart is so happy when their are flowers blooming all around me. It's like the opening scene of Sound of Music-- only just me laying in a bed of flowers... for hours.

If you're current climate is anything like mine the 'official start of spring' means nothing to Mother Nature. I've been rocking my parka and blanket scarf all week and I see no end to that any time soon. When Mother Nature doesn't play fair I like to take things into my own hands. --cue this adorable blush, off the shoulder top.

This top was gifted to me by Zaful for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 

Shop the Look: Pink Lace Top

I fell in love with this top the moment I laid eyes on it. Blush is one of my favorite colors and it just so happens to be "in" this spring. When I saw this top was blush and off the shoulder AND LACE DETAILED SLEEVES -- Wow. The caps should really say it all. I was in shock-- the best kind of shock.

But, once again, I do need to reiterate that I live in the Subarctic and sometimes have to dress appropriately. As much as I would love to style this darling top with white pants and wedges, the dark high rise jeans and camel booties were the right choice for the weather right now. This top might scream spring, but it can handle the chill. How cool does it look with this choker?? I'm not any sort of badass, but that first picture with the wind in my hair and the graffiti train darkened by the sinister clouds makes me feel like I might be related to Lana del Ray. ....sort of.

What trends are you falling for this spring??



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Wednesday, March 15, 2017

"People love tacos" ft. Condado Taqueria

There's always an excitement that accompanies any restaurant opening and this held true for the opening of Condado Taqueria. This past weekend I had the pleasure of visiting the restaurant before its opening and sampling their food for myself. As far as first hand accounts go, this was as positive as any owner could have hoped. Now, granted, I am a self proclaimed taco lover and it has been said that tequila makes up 45% of my blood, but the facts remain: Condado lived up to any and all of my wildest dreams.

All joking aside, the moment I walked into Condado I knew I was in for a treat. The ambiance of a place is the first thing I notice. Food, alcohol, wait staff aside, I will go to any restaurant, dive bar, or what have you if I feel drawn to their ambiance-- their vibe.

This restaurant doesn't just have art, it is art. My favorite piece is lovingly referred to as "Nacho Volcano". This mural took up an entire wall, featuring a volcano spewing nacho cheese and entrapping any and all tortilla chips in it's lava- cheesy path. (Yes, it is as cool as it sounds.) There was so much thought and intention behind the creation of Condado that I was instantly intrigued as to what else was in store for the evening.

It turns out all of their art was created by local artists harnessing the vibes of graffiti and tattoo art to bring into being a restaurant where every place you sit there is something different to look at. The restaurant is filled with murals that their general manager notes, "work well together, even though they may seem different." He explains, "Some of the tattoo artists that we have will do the more intricate designs" whereas some of their other pieces are in a "fast[er] graffiti style". 

When I took a second to really look at each piece, I noticed how true this was. Although each mural or piece of artwork followed a certain theme or idea, they were all so stylistically different. I know for a fact I wasn't able to look at all of the art this unique restaurant had to offer and I know each time I come back will be a new visual adventure. 

The experience of being in their restaurant seems to be almost as important, if not just as important as the quality of their food and beverage. But lets not forget, Condado is first and foremost a restaurant and I am first and foremost a lover of Mexican cuisine, so I have to talk about the food. 

Yes, those are actual pictures I took on my humble iPhone of Condado's real life food. I'm legitimately drooling right now just thinking about how amazing everything was. I am a sucker for blood orange drinks, so I had to get their blood orange house margarita. Let's just say, they definitely didn't skimp on the tequila and I 100% had to sit and drink a glass of water before I interviewed their general manager. Maybe I'm just a light weight, but the two drinks that I had (my second one was Kahlo -- a tequila version of a mojito) were definitely on the stronger side. 

After drinks, we order their "El Tres Amigos" -- chips accompanied by your choice of three dipping sauces (quesos, salsas, and guacamoles). Jen wanted to try their Tuscan guac and to be honest I had my reservations. Something about artichokes, basil and balsamic didn't seem like it would be good paired with guacamole. I am so glad I was wrong, though. Their Tuscan guac turned out to be my favorite-- we couldn't get enough of it! 

And if you were wondering, all of the raving reviews about their queso is correct. It's banging. If I could have a lifetime supply of their queso I would die a happy woman. 

Queso > men 

For our entree, we each decided to create our own tacos. I can't honestly remember what all I put into mine, but it truly was a delicious taco. I was more than overwhelmed with all of the choices they had to offer. They have so many different types of shells, proteins and toppings. The availability of a wide variety of options is the catered experience Condado gives to all of its guests. I will definitely need to come back to try more! 

Insider Recommendations:
1. Try the queso dirty
2. Try the Blood Orange Jalapeño Margarita
     (Secret Menu item)
3. Always, always, always get the Sweet Lucy shell for your tacos.

Be sure to visit Condado's Pittsburgh restaurant located at 971 Liberty Avenue, Pittsburgh Pa, 15222 to experience this unique restaurant for yourself! 


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Friday, March 10, 2017

Black Bohemian Dress + Sammy Dress

Hello everyone! I hope you are all having a fabulous March! This month has already been a whirlwind, but I have only hope and positivity for what is to come. :) That was a hella vague opening, but I need an entire "Real Talk" post to get into the craziness that has been my life lately. Hopefully that will be up soon!

Anywho, is it snowing where you are today? Because yesterday I ran outside with a short sleeve shirt on and was completely fine and today I just want to stay snuggled up in the biggest sweater I own. Weather is so confusing! How am I supposed to mentally prepare for the best season ever (aka. summer) if its snowing every other week?!

So, once again, we find ourselves in the season of transition pieces, something I talked about constantly this past fall. I am forever on the lookout for pieces that work great during these strange, "never know what's coming next" months and today I'm bringing you a beautiful boho dress perfect for just that!

This dress was gifted to me by Sammy Dress for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 

Shop the Look:

Real talk: if I'm being completely honest I underestimated this dress. Well, to be fair I completely underestimated myself in this dress. I 100% thought the low cut front wouldn't be a big deal and my chest would look as "quaint" as the model in the photo. These photos here actually do a better job downplaying things than real life does. So, let me be the first to say that I'm not totally comfortable wearing this dress out for your typical everyday events unless I wear something underneath to keep things a bit more modest. 

But that's the beauty of this dress! You can wear it how it was intended or slip something underneath to give it a more modest look and no one would be the wiser. It's all about what makes you comfortable. 

Besides that slight hiccup, I'm in love with everything about this dress. Bohemian style dresses are so fun and playful and that is exactly what this dress is -- fun and playful. The wide sleeves flow with your movement, the skirt is flattering but not tooo short and the flowers (and really all of the detailing) give this dress an added romantic feel to the playfulness. 

"So how does this dress act as a great transition piece?" you might ask. Well, first of all, in my humble opinion black works for every season. Black in general is great to transition with because you can pair it with anything and it will still look good. Yes, the golden rule of fashion. Even better, though, if its cold outside and you want to wear a dress, but still want to give your legs a little bit of warmth, this black dress pairs seamlessly with tights. Warm outside? Throw aside your tights and you're good to go! This dress would look amazing with riding boots or booties or heals or even cute little sandals (for the wonderful upcoming season of summer). 

Really ladies, its a win-win-win-win scenario.  10/10 

What is your favorite transition piece for this time of year?? 

& be sure to check Sammy Dress out for yourself!


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Monday, February 27, 2017

Reasons Why I Can't Wait for Spring + JORD Giveaway

Hello, lovelies and welcome back! The past few days in Pittsburgh have been absolutely beautiful! It was well over 70 the other day and I was super bummed I had to spend all day inside. I don't think Spring has officially sprung (especially considering its only 41 this morning), but it's getting pretty darn close. All of this beautiful weather has got my head full of blooming flowers and sunnier days. So, in commemoration of this lovely weather and the approaching springtime, I've decided to put together a list of things I'm most excited for this upcoming season!

This watch was gifted to me by JORD watches for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

5 Reasons Why I Can't Wait Another Minute For Spring:

1. Longer days
I'm 100% that person whose mood changes with the weather. I hate how quickly it gets dark out now. I'm just happier when things are bright out! I've already started to notice a change, but I'm soo ready for it to be light out until like 9PM. Soon!!

2. Spring cleaning
Okay, this is an odd one to get excited about, but I love getting into everything, purging what I don't need and feeling fresh and clean for the springtime. I honestly feel lighter when I get rid of a bunch of things that just s.i.t. in my apartment. You know that drawer you barely open and just push things around in if you ever do open it? I very strongly dislike that drawer. Spring cleaning gives me an excuse to go through the things I own and figure out what I need and what is just taking up space and weighing me down. Especially with my upcoming move this summer, this year's spring cleaning/purging will be crucial!

3. Spring clothes!!
Floral dresses, floral tops, floral jewelry, floral EVERYTHING. Okay, that might be a bit over the top, but I'm all about the florals (even my bedspread sports pretty burgundy flowers   (**see below pictures). Also, colors. Lots and lots of colors and flowy outfits! Everything light and beautiful is what I want to wear during the springtime. And I seriously can't wait to pair all of my spring outfits with my beautiful spring inspired JORD watch! This outfit is just a tease of what is in store for Spring. Pastels, florals, lace and a beautiful light wood accent. This watch is just the right amount of springtime earthiness (definitely not a word but I'm using it anyway) -- light, bright, natural and inviting. It's everything I could want in an accent piece!

4. Outdoor activities
One of the occupational hazards of living in Pittsburgh is the cold weather in the winter. And one of the reasons I get so excited for Spring is because I can finally go outside again for the pure reason of wanting to go outside and breath in the fresh air. I love sitting on my porch when it gets nice out and reading a book. Or going for a walk in the park nearby. Or even getting off my butt and going for a run. These are things I can never do in the winter months because it's just too darn cold.

5. Birds chirping
This is another odd one, but I love the sound of birds chirping. --really, I love the sound of any and all life outside. Winter is so sad because most everyone (and everything) stays where it's warm (which in Pittsburgh is anywhere but outside). I love keeping my windows open and waking up to the sounds of birds chirping in the morning. It's my favorite way to wake up!

And now time for the giveaway!! 
I'm teaming up with JORD to help you ready your wardrobe for the upcoming season. Enter below for your chance to win a $100 gift card to JORD. A winner will be drawn on Sunday, March 5th, so get those entries in soon!

The best part?? Everyone who enters and doesn't win the $100 gift card automatically receives a $25 gift card either way!! What a steal!

Click here to enter!!

Ladies Wooden Watches

What are you excited for this upcoming Spring??


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Friday, February 17, 2017

Valentine's Day Outfit with Sammy Dress

Hello, hello lovelies! I hope you all had an amazing Valentine's Day full love and all things chocolate. I bought myself a bag of Dove dark chocolates and ate the entire bag in two days... #noshame As much of a sucker as I am for all things pink, red and burgundy, I decided to opt out of the typical 'in your face' color scheme. Sometimes, a little pop of color is all your need to stay festive! This outfit was the perfect amount of chic and somehow managed to also look relaxed, laid back and holiday appropriate in the process. Talk about a win-win scenario!

This dress was gifted to me by Sammy Dress for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

This kimono incorporates the floral aspect of Valentine's Day, while still remaining relatively relaxed and overall neutral. 

Current thoughts: "Is that a cat? If so, can I pet the cat??" 

Shop the Look:

You all know by now how much I love Sammy Dress. I've found so many on-trend pieces from this site that I've been able to create multiple outfits with, which is so important for me. For those of you who've been following along with my Instagram Style Party, you know how crucial it is for me to have strong base pieces that I can use to create multiple looks. There's nothing worse than buying a shirt or a dress or what have you and only getting a few wears out of it! I want something I can wear over and over and still feel the same excitement I had when I put it on in the store.

Now, that's not to say I don't love my fair share of completely unique pieces, but finding wardrobe additions that can last the test of time is my fundamental goal.

On top of being a great stand alone outfit, this elegant yet simple dress is a beautiful layering piece. Not only does it look great with this kimono, but I can also see it looking great with a leather jacket or a cute relaxed cardigan. And the simple round neck collar allows you to get creative and play around with different jewelry--my favorite!

**an actual view of how I look at my lovely best friend & boyfriend

Since we are talking about Valentine's Day and love, I just wanted to give a shoutout to my amazing boyfriend, Mason, who took these picture of me. He has been so unbelievably supportive and this blog would not be possible without him. He's the best Valentine I could ask for. :)  

If you like what you see, be sure to check out Sammy Dress!


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Thursday, February 9, 2017

3 Perfect Valentine's Day Inspired Hairstyles

Hello & welcome back friends! I hope you are having a fabulous February and enjoying the Instagram Style Party! I am excited to share with you a few of my favorite Valentine’s Day inspired hairstyles. For those of you who don’t know, I’ve been collaborating with Remington and their blog, Remington Ready, for a while now (see here, here and here) to bring readers different hairstyles to try out. Today, I am bringing a hairstyle tutorial post straight to Rachel Lynn and showing you a few of my favorite Valentine’s Day inspired hairstyles to do with a headwrap.

Whenever I think of headwrap or headbands, my mind immediately goes to the queen of all hair accessories, Blair Waldorf. That girl seriously knew how to pull anything off. If I’m being honest, sometimes I can get into this mindset where I convince myself I can’t wear a headband. I’ll go weeks without one! And then one day I’ll decide to be a little adventurous and get up the courage to wear it and I find it adds so much to my style. Headbands and headwraps are the perfect accessory to take your hairstyle to the next level.

This post has been sponsored by Remington Products for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. 

Style 1:
This first style is by far my favorite. I’m honestly not sure why I’m drawn to this particular style so much, but there’s just something about the simplicity of it, paired with the pop of the headband that I love!

For this style, I will be using a headwrap. You can use a headband if you like, but I’ve found that headwraps add stability to the look. Personally, I find them easier to style with.

Start by curling your hair in loose waves. I used by my Remington TStudio Thermaluxe Curling Wand to create this look. (You can also create this look with straight hair, but curled hair gives it a more romantic feel.) Then, position your headwrap over your hair and a little further back. You want to give some space for the front section of hair. Slowly take all of your hair out from under the wrap (as your normally would) except for a front section of hair. This front section of hair can be as large or as small as you’d like!

Take that front section over the headwrap and to the side, pinning it down towards the back. You can use a bobby pin if you’d like, but if you’re wearing this style on a date, I would recommend dressing it up with a pretty barrette or clip! And there you have it! I like the looser look, so I usually pull my hair out a bit from the pin. This style is subtle, but it does an excellent job framing your face and the hairband gives beautiful dimension to an otherwise simple look!

Shop the Look:

Style 2:
This second style piggybacks off of the first one. Starting where we left off, take your hair and position it in a low ponytail.  Then, wrap a strand of hair around the hair tie. Whenever I’m going out and wearing a ponytail, I like to wrap my hair around the hair tie. This gives the look a more elegant, pulled together feel.  Now you have a look that still gives dimension to your hair, but is more laid back for those casual Valentine’s Day dates!

Shop the Look:

Style 3:
What I love most about headbands and headwraps is that they elevate a simple, everyday hairstyle into something chic and new! This next style gives the typical curled hair a cute, “girl next door” feel. If you’re constantly curling your hair and want to do something different with it without having a ton of time to create a complex look, this style is for you! Simply curl your hair and add a headband! I used a darling maroon headwrap to keep with the Valentine's Day theme without being too loud. God knows Blair rocked this style time and time again on Gossip Girl and there's no reason why you can't, too! Chic, simple, elevated, elegant. 


What are some of your favorite hairstyles??


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