Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Wishlist Wednesday #15

Whew, I've really been falling down on the wish list-creating job. Between Eating All the Things, super-exciting blogger collaborations, and my tikitastic new dresses, I've just had so many things to blog about, and haven't quite been able to fit a wishlist post in. However, when I saw some of Bernie Dexter's new releases, I had to showcase my favorites in a wishlist post!

Monday, August 29, 2016

The Life Aquatic

My love for the Kelly dress from Bernie Dexter is intense. I've lavished it with fulsome praise here on the blog on several occasions, and showcased its magical powers of flattering literally everyone with some of my blogger/Facebook friends. In a word, I'm obsessed., to the point where I have to exercise extreme self-control not to buy it in every single print Bernie releases.

Sometimes, these apparent victories of self-control are just that: apparent. I'll pass on a new print, congratulate the hell out of myself for being prudent, and then BAM! Regret hits me like a ton of bricks once it's too late to just buy the darn thing. Such was almost the story of the Kelly in Blue Water print, but (spoiler alert), this tale has a happy ending!
bernie dexter blue water kelly

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Guest Post: One Tall Tiki Drink

Hey all! Today I have a very special guest for all of you: the fabulous Penny Snark of The Sconnie Sling and I have teamed up for a post exchange, to share our thoughts on the new tiki Little Jun. She's a fabulous lady and an excellent writer (so much joie de vivre!), has an excellent sense of humor, and her brow game is seriously amazing. I'm especially excited because her post on body positivity has been a huge inspiration to me, and really summed up a lot of my own thoughts and experiences on my own journey to a more body-positive existence. Thank you so much, Penny! -- Emily

Hello there! I’m Penny Snark of The Sconnie Sling, and I’m busting into Emily’s petite world today to bring you the view from up here. Emily and I have been Instagram buddies for a while now, so when I discovered that we both were ordering the mint tiki Little Jun, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to collaborate!

I’ll admit that I was a little nervous about ordering the Little Jun skirt from Pinup Girl Clothing. After all, “little” is right there in the name, and at a curvy 5’9”, that’s not a word that anyone would use to describe me! (Most people go right to Amazon…) But the mint tiki print was too beautiful for me to resist, so I finally took the leap…

Thursday, August 25, 2016

A Body-Positive Manifesto

Lately, I've been pretty much eating and wearing whatever I feel like, and let me tell you, it's pretty glorious. It's also somewhat unprecedented in my life. For almost as long as I can remember, I've spent a lot of my time thinking about what I'm eating and mentally counting calories, or worrying about how to 'make up' for things I ate.

In the past year or so, though, I feel like those thoughts have finally begun to wither away, replaced by thoughts of 'is this good for my body? Am I eating nutritious things? Will this behavior/food help me live well?' And when I decide to eat things purely because they're delicious, I don't feel the terrible remorse that used to ruin the act of indulgence.

I like to eat things like this!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Tiki Tuesday #3: Orange Tiki Renee

The Renee dress from Pinup Girl Clothing is one of those garments that I never thought I'd have the confidence to wear. After being self-conscious about my midriff for what felt like forever, I couldn't quite wrap my mind around a dress with a cutout right over the belly.

One day, though, something happened to change my mind: a Renee in one of my all-time favorite  Pinup Girl prints appeared in the Coming Soon section of the website. Well, by now, you can probably guess how the story ends (spoiler alert: with me in a Renee), and I'm happy to report that things worked out perfectly!
pinup girl clothing tiki renee

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Body Positivity Week

Being surrounded by supportive, positive women is one of the best things about jumping into the blogging world. It's helped me to expand my comfort zone, style-wise, and venture into the Wide World of Crop-tops, and more importantly, it's helped me to feel more at home in my own skin to see women constantly building each other up and sending out messages of self-love and acceptance. Most of my media consumption has shifted from 'traditional' outlets (television, style and beauty magazines, and more 'mainstream' style blogs and clothing stores), and it's amazing how much better I've felt since I withdrew from a world that bombards women with constant messages of not-enough-ness: not thin enough, not pretty enough, not tall enough, not white enough, not male-gaze-friendly enough.

Those anti-woman messages are, frankly, utter bullshit. (My apologies if this profanity offends you. In this case, I think it's the right word for the job.) So, since I missed the boat on Body Positivity Week back in May, I'm declaring this my own personal Body Positivity Week. Please join me!

Friday, August 19, 2016

Iron Gate Dress and Ironclad Habits

Even though I utterly despise heat and humidity, I must admit that Chicago really comes alive in the summer. It seems like there's a festival or two every weekend, and every public space is absolutely crawling with people! Jeff and I have been joining the crowds more often than usual, taking in some of the attractions that we hadn't visited yet and crossing more restaurants off of our list.

I'm definitely a creature of habit. I've seen Star Wars upwards of 75 times, because I prefer to watch movies that I know I love rather than taking a risk on an unknown quantity. I buy the same cheese every time we have bread and cheese night, because Cambozola is the best cheese that has ever existed and I can't stand the risk of substandard cheese. I buy multiple colorways of my favorite dresses and skirts (for more evidence of this, see here and here, here and here, or here and here). When I like something, I really like it!

effie's heart iron gate

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Guest Post at the Museum Pinup

It's my great pleasure to give you some more exciting guest-blogging news: today I have a post up at the lovely Miss Ani Holly's blog, The Museum Pinup! Head on over there to read about life in a natural-history museum, and see what I came up with to represent #museumlife in outfit form!
Here's a hint…can you guess the dress?

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Tiki Tuesday #2: PUG Alfreda Dress

I'm having a major tiki moment right now. Maybe it's the summer heat, which feels almost tropical with all the humidity we've been having, but more likely, it's because I've finally realized that tiki-themed prints have always been perfect. Big bold florals, kitchsy novelty prints, and wearable wooden jewelry? Yes, please! The original tiki-print Jenny skirt was my secondhand-PUG Holy Grail, and it's one of my most-loved articles of clothing.

pinup girl clothing alfreda dress

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Kellys for All!

It's only a slight exaggeration to say that the Kelly dress from Bernie Dexter broke the retro-style internet. (Ok, it's a large exaggeration. Bear with me!) When the Kelly in the Kitchen dress first popped up for preorder on Bernie's site, it inspired quite a lot of excitement, for several obvious reasons:

1) It's a shirtwaist dress with no buttons!
2) The print is absolute genius, and just look at the colors!
3) A culinary-themed dress with a full, gathered skirt and classic 1950s silhouette is almost too perfect.

When these dresses started to make their way to their new homes, the reaction on social media and blogs was instant, near-unanimous love. I've written before about what makes the Kelly my favorite Bernie Dexter cut of all time, and if you look in my closet, you'll see four of them. For now.

It seems that Bernie knows how perfect her creation is, since she's released the Kelly in numerous other colors and patterns. And after seeing so many people rocking the living daylights out of their Kellys, I've come to a surprising conclusion: this dress looks good on everyone! To prove this point, I asked Sara Lily, the epic mind behind In a Nutshell…, to help me put together a post showcasing the OG Kelly In the Kitchen dress on ladies of all heights and sizes. Without further ado, here are just a few lovely ladies (and me!) totally slaying in their Kellys!

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Lucky 13

Today, I feel like telling a story that has absolutely nothing to do with the outfit in this post, and no logical connection to a style blog. (Even as I typed that sentence, my brain was busily trying to think of a connection between the outfit and the story. Read on to see whether I succeeded at this...)
cowboy kate dress

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Tiki Tuesday #1 Review: Retrospec'd Hawaiian Dream

Does anyone else feel like Australia must be a wonderland of retro-styled joy? Case in point: I've been after one of Aussie company Retrospec'd's gorgeous creations ever since the lovely Miss Amy May reviewed the sweetest floral sundress on her blog. However, my dread of international shipping fees and total lack of patience has, until recently, kept this dream from becoming a reality. However, a handful of American shops now stock a limited range of Retrospec'd dresses, and after a blogger friend of mine sent me a photo of the Hawaiian Dream Sundress, I knew I had to have it!
retrospec'd hawaiian dress

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Baby Back Blues

Sometimes, you just need to get the heck outta Dodge, which is why Jeff and I sometimes opt to drive out to a delightful barbecue joint outside even the most generous definition of Chicagoland's borders. Since we're planning to pay a visit to Baby Back Blues BBQ today (and might be there even as you read this!), I figured the time was ripe to post about our last expedition to Joliet, Illinois.
I was heartless enough to make Jeff take this photo in the middle of J.C. Penney's, but not heartless enough to drag him into the mini Sephora boutique behind me.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Green Kimono Lena

During Honeymoon Part 1: Staycation Edition, I finally got to go to the Shedd Aquarium, and of course, I dressed for a completely different occasion. I have to wonder if the part of my brain that recognizes (and more importantly, cares) that I'm not dressed appropriately for an occasion was irreparably damaged by my years in grad school. I certainly wouldn't be the only casualty!
trashy diva green kimono lena

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Fundamental LA

Last weekend, I took a whirlwind trip to my old home city of Los Angeles, and it was absolutely glorious! Jeff left five days earlier than me, and by the time I got off the plane at LAX, I was almost ready to cry out of the overwhelming happiness of 1) being reunited with my husband and 2) setting foot in California for the first time in eleven months.