Sunday, December 31, 2017

So Long, 2017, and Thanks for Exactly One Thing

It's become almost de rigueur to hate on 2017, and as much as I hate following fads, I can't deny that this year was rough. The never-ending parade of celebrity deaths that everyone bemoaned in 2016 gave way to a cascade of sexual-assault revelations that showed the world just how ugly male privilege can be, and Tr*mp's incompetence as President has overshot even my most pessimistic 2016 expectations.

Bernie Dexter Drive In dress new years eve print

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Christmas Eve

It's hard to believe that Christmas is just a few short hours away! The past three months or so have completely flown by. It's as if we've been living in our own personal Groundhog Day since the baby was born, and yet it simultaneously feels like she's always been a part of our little family. She's already the gravitational center of my entire universe and a part of my brain is always thinking of her. Is this what parenting is?

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Deerly Beloved

PEOPLE. I am so excited right now! As I type this, my parents are up in the air, on their way to Chicago for an indefinite period of time. By the time you read this, they'll be here! And Jeff and I couldn't be happier! It was such a blessing to have them with us when we brought the baby home from the hospital, and since they left, she's grown and changed so dramatically that she hardly seems like the same person.

banned green peter pan collar cardigan

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Festive Tiki

Today, I'm delighted to answer the age-old question nobody's been asking: Emily, how do I Christmas-ify a tiki print?

Disney Enchanted Tiki Room dress

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Grace Under Pressure

It’s hard to believe that I’m already on the home stretch of my maternity leave, but somehow, in the whirlwind that my life has become, almost eight weeks have gone by since the baby was born. I’ll be going back to work on a very part-time basis this month, transitioning back to full-time starting in January, and I’m having a lot of feelings about it.

Hearts and Found Grace dress

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Review: Midnight in Paris Streetcar

By now, I bet most of you know that I might be a Trashy Diva fanatic. I've fallen wildly in love with just about everything they've put out in the past two years, particularly the Wildflowers collection and my very favorite, Venice Nights. Given how much I absolutely loved Venice Nights, and how often I've worn it since it came out last year, I had high hopes for this year's travel print. And my goodness, Midnight in Paris did not disappoint!

trashy diva midnight in paris streetcar review

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Life Update: She's Here!

For those of you who've seen any of my recent Insta posts, this post will be old news. But in case anyone was wondering what happened to my lovely, predictable three-times-per-week update schedule, here's your answer: it's gone the way of every other schedule and routine in my life, because our baby is here!

My first postpartum blog shoot took three minutes flat.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Doing the Batty Bat

Last weekend, I made what was either a massive tactical error or an accidental genius move: I went to Target to buy two specific things. Needless to say, I left with a trunkful of stuff, including all the baby things ever and some key components of my Halloween capsule wardrobe.

target women's halloween dress

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Baby, You're a Star

Well, after a couple of rather heavy and/or ranty posts lately, I'd say that we're all due for something a bit more uplifting, eh? So today, I wanted to share something that I've been thinking about quite a lot over the past few months, and talk a little bit about kindness.

Collectif atomic star bolero

Thursday, October 5, 2017

My Halloween Capsule Wardrobe

Have capsule wardrobes fallen from favor? I feel like I see far fewer blog posts about capsule wardrobes than I did a year ago. But this just makes me think that it's about time for me to write a capsule wardrobe post of my own, since I'm the opposite of an early adopter. And since it's October, you probably could've guessed that my very first capsule wardrobe would be Halloween-themed!

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Lake and Columbus (I was cutting off all my hair)

After the last time I donated my hair, I wasn't sure I'd ever do it again. It was what you might call a slightly traumatic experience, for those of us whose problems mainly fall into the 'first-world' category. It was about three years ago now, but I still remember the particular indignity of sitting in my car sobbing in the garage at LMU before dragging myself to teach my afternoon classes.

Look, it's Jenny!

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Bye Bye, Buy Buy Baby

Lately it seems like every other post I write is baby-related, but I suppose that comes with the eight-months-and-three-weeks-pregnant territory. I've been spending most of my free time preparing for the baby, shopping for her, and taking classes over at the hospital, not to mention trying frantically to thin my dress hoard. And since this blog is where I talk about all the things on my mind, I suppose it makes sense that right now it's riding the 7:30 express train to Babysville.

Well, that and most of my dresses no longer fit.

eight months pregnant

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Memento Mori

Being pregnant in 2017 feels a little like I'm having a child in the last third of On the Beach. Even though I've literally never been more excited about anything else in my entire life, I can see the inexorable doom approaching.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

And the Livin' is Easy

Well, it's finally fall, even though it's been ludicrously hot in Chicago for almost a week now. This summer was been super eventful, and it was such a nice change of pace from the first several months of the year! First, my mom came to visit, and after spending one of the nicest weekends I've had all year with her, I had two days of Trashy Diva meetups the very next weekend. I went to Vintage Garage Chicago for the first time and scored some sweet new dresses and an epic suitcase, and Jeff and I had a lovely babymoon around Chicago.

purple deadly dames hawaiian hideaway dress

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Maternity Style Hacks

When I got pregnant, I had three main goals with respect to my maternity wardrobe. First, I wanted to avoid wearing boring, generic maternity wear as much as I possibly could. Second, I wanted to wear my prepregnancy wardrobe for as long as I could, because I really like my current clothes. Finally, as much as humanly possible, I wanted to buy things that would work as well after my pregnancy as they did during. At eight months and change into this pregnancy thing, I'm pretty happy with how I'd done so far, so today I'm sharing some of the top maternity style hacks that have gotten me this far.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

A Body Positivity Setback

About two weeks ago, I encountered the biggest stumbling block on my body-positivity journey, and unsurprisingly, it's pregnancy-related: stretch marks.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Lindy Bop Sale Haul

If I'm honest with you, it's been years since I thought about ordering from Lindy Bop. When I first started wearing retro-reproduction, I snagged several Lindy Bop frocks from Amazon (because free shipping > paying for international shipping). Two of them were massively successful, but I ended up selling the other two because the skirts just weren't full enough for my taste and the shelf-bust styles they offer looked a bit awkward on me. But over Labor Day weekend, I found myself unable to resist the siren song of incredibly cheap dresses in adorable prints.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Why I'm Not Buying a Travel System

It's Unpopular Opinion: Baby Edition time on Thoroughly Modern Emily! Today's topic: travel systems/infant car seats, also known as the bane of my baby-shopping existence, and why I'm not getting one. Before I get into this, though, to anyone who loves their infant car seat, please accept my apologies for what I'm about to write. But I'm 37 weeks pregnant and had all the feelings even before pregnancy hormones got involved, so I've got a lot to get off my chest here!

Pinup Girl Clothing leopard Scrumptious dress

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Purple and Gold

Maybe it's because I lived in LA for eight years and married an avid Lakers fan, but I'm a huge fan of a purple and gold outfit. Mustard yellow and purple just seem like they belong together, so when I got my hands on this new-to-me floral Modcloth skirt, I knew exactly how I'd style it for its maiden voyage.

modcloth ikebana for all skirt

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

25 Signs You're a Real Adult

Alright, who else thought they'd be welcomed to adulthood in a dramatic, unmistakable moment? That there would be a clear event that you could point to, after which you'd always feel like a 'real' adult? My dad often says that he used to think becoming an adult happened like this, but that he's come to realize that no matter how old he gets, he never quite feels like he's finished becoming a real grownup. And the older I get, the more I understand what he was talking about.

Trashy Diva Irish Polka L'amour pregnant

Saturday, September 9, 2017

The Kindness of Strangers

Recently, it seems like I've been writing a gazillion posts about super-heavy and/or difficult things. And while I'm a huge proponent of letting yourself experience your emotions, and have been consciously trying not to shy away from emotionally challenging topics, there's been plenty of sunshine in my life, too!

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Memories, Painful and Comforting

Early in my first year of college, I came across two things that have stuck in my mind ever since. The first came up in the course of reading Homer's Iliad, during discussion of Achilles; the second, I believe, in a digressive discussion of language in a novel.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Life Update: Very Pregnant

Hope everyone enjoyed the long weekend! I've spent the past four days in an absolute whirlwind of activity: shopping for baby things, organizing her room, doing a ridiculous amount of laundry, and even sneaking in a bit of fun with my mom here and there. She heads home tomorrow and I'm already sad about it. (Jeff has stocked up on tissues in anticipation.)

Emily and Fin Vintage-Inspired Vim A-Line Dress green

Saturday, September 2, 2017

The Word from the Bird

Lately, I've been on a serious true-vintage kick. I'd been searching through Etsy for a while and adding lovely midcentury dresses to my cart, but the love affair really started in earnest with my trip to Vintage Garage in May. I snagged three amazing dresses for a song and realized that there's something extra exciting about finding a unique dress with a history of its own. When I set out to narrow down my Etsy cart and take the plunge on a few more dresses, this Word from the Bird number was at the very top of my list!

word from the bird vintage dress

Thursday, August 31, 2017

We Who Fight Monsters

In the past week and a half or so, I've seen a disturbing uptick in what I'd be tempted to call "body-shaming f***ery" if I wasn't publishing these words on the internet. There's good reason to believe all of this kerfuffle is just one miserable person on Instagram making one burner account after another and leaving idiotic, unkind comments on anyone who appears less miserable and more confident than she is. But still, since one pathetic schmuck can have outsize influence on the world, activity like this must not go unremarked.

red gingham modcloth skirt

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

You Matter.

Today's post is a bit of an anomaly for me. Rather than my usual vintage-inspired outfit/meandering narrative fare, I've decided it's time for a brief PSA. The topic: you, your mental health, and your importance to the people in your life.

So as to not bury the lede, let me start with my key point: no matter who you are, you are vitally important and deserve to feel ok. I don't know who's reading these words right now, but I'm as certain about this as I've ever been about anything in my entire life. No matter what your circumstances in life at this moment, you matter to somebody.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Vintage Handy (Wo)man

Since May, I've been slowly adding to my true-vintage collection, and some of those new-to-me dresses have gotten quite a bit of wear already. But the hunt for true vintage isn't without its challenges. Aside from the inherent difficulty of finding cute, affordable midcentury vintage in larger sizes, when you buy a vintage garment, you're buying something old. And fabric that's been well-loved for 50+ years tends to need mending.

green floral 1960s vintage dress

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

On Haters, Again

Every so often, I see posts on Facebook or Instagram that make me sad. Apparently, some people cannot go out in the world wearing whatever strikes their fancy without being inundated by obnoxious, judgmental, and downright rude comments from coworkers, 'friends'/relatives, and perfect strangers. And it sort of baffles me that so many people apparently never learned that if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all. It's not exactly rocket science, is it?

pinup girl clothing pele dress

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Shelter Island Hallockfest

Last month, I took my last trip to New York until 2018 (sob!), and as usual, it was an absolute whirlwind of a long weekend. I think I slept about twenty-eight hours total from Thursday night to Tuesday morning, which is a far cry from my preferred 8-10 hours per night. But a bit of fatigue is a small price to pay to cram in as much time with the people I love as possible! This trip was no ordinary jaunt home, however: I was there for a long-expected Hallock family reunion on the island where my dad grew up!

shelter island new york north ferry

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Review: Trashy Diva Wildflowers Streetcar

Trashy Diva has almost-singlehandedly turned me into a floral aficionado. Between their glorious tropical prints, their classic allover florals, and their big, bold flower prints, I've come to see the light at last! So when they released their Wildflowers collection, it was love at first sight! I had a little trouble deciding which style to order, but since I've been drooling over the Streetcar dress from afar for ages, the answer seemed pretty obvious.

Trashy Diva Wildflowers

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Babymoon: the Adler Planetarium

Calling all space/astronomy nerds! There's a big event coming on August 21: a total solar eclipse! For the first time in quite a while, the path of the eclipse will cut from coast to coast of the United States, and I'm actually going to get a pretty good view in Chicago at midday. I've already planned my entire day around getting to Chicago's Adler Planetarium for the eclipse, though I still need to assemble a kit for safe viewing.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Review: Vintage Inspired by Jackie

If you've ever come across Vintage Inspired by Jackie's Instagram or her Etsy shop, there's a better-than-average chance that you've fallen hard for her work. Adorable Disney/Star Wars print dresses made using classic vintage patterns? Yes please!

Vintage Inspired by Jackie dress review

Thursday, August 10, 2017

A Letter to My Younger Self

Dear Sixteen-Year-Old Emily,

First off, let me prove to you that this letter really comes from your older self: your favorite thing you've drawn since high school started is actually just a crummy sketch of Pete Scheck and a saxophone. (And let me sort of reassure you, after such public embarrassment, that until publishing this letter, you never told a soul about that.)

#tbt to being sixteen.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Review: Lady V London Jasmine Dress

The British retro-reproduction clothing world is on fire lately. Between the Pretty Dress Company, the House of Foxy, and Collectif, I've given the Royal Mail and Fedex quite a workout in the past several months! I'm finally starting to get over my distaste for international shipping and its attendant cost, and after seeing some of my fave Insta pals looking amazing in their Lady V London dresses for ages, I decided to take the plunge. And if today's review of the Jasmine dress is a bit late, well: better late than never!

Lady V London mustard and purple rose Jasmine dress

Saturday, August 5, 2017

A Modest Proposal for Body-Positive Sizing

It's amazing (in a horrifying way) how much that tiny number or letter on the tag of your clothing can affect your entire sense of self. In the past week or so, I've seen some folks really struggling with body image, and it seems like whenever the matter of body acceptance comes up, the issue of clothing size isn't far behind.

hearts and found Lana dress

Thursday, August 3, 2017

7 Ways to Treat Yourself Under $10

I am a firm believer in rewarding yourself for anything from 'finishing a PhD after six years' to 'waking up and getting dressed.' It's just good for morale, after all. I really enjoy getting things done, and get quite a rush simply from crossing items off my to-do list, but sometimes you really need that extra lift that only comes from a treat-yoself break! Because I prefer to save my money for buying far too many dresses, I like to keep these treats on the inexpensive side (no facials for me, sadly!), and today I'm going to share my top seven ways to recharge my batteries for under $10.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Help Me, Trashy Diva Obi!

If you think I'm mildly obsessed with Trashy Diva...well, you're not wrong. They have so many amazing prints and such lovely vintage-inspired styles that I really cannot resist! I've reviewed quite a few of the new releases over the past year, but every once in a while, I like to take an older print out for a spin.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Hot Mama: a Stylish and Cool Third-Trimester Dress

It is a truth universally acknowledged that the year you buy an air conditioner is the year you'll get a ridiculously mild summer. To anyone out there in Chicago that's reading this: you're welcome. Remember that one week of 90+ degree heat and humidity in early June? Yeah, that ended the day before we had our ACs installed.

Effie's Heart Rachel dress

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Review: Retrospec'd Flamenco Elizabeth Dress

Every time I see a new dress from Retrospec'd, my heart squeezes a little at the amazing painterly prints and gorgeously executed vintage styles. After seeing how lovely and well-made my first Retrospec'd dress was, it wasn't hard to convince myself to splurge on another. And when I saw the Elizabeth dress in Flamenco on the lovely Bristol, as well as all over my Insta feed, I absolutely fell in love with the print. Once I realized this dress was available from a US stockist, it was only a matter of time before it appeared in my closet.

Retrospec'd Flamenco Elizabeth Dress Daisy Jean floral designs

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

A Day in My Life

Routines are how I calibrate my life. I find comfort in familiar things and adapt fairly slowly to change, so I enjoy having daily and weekly rhythms that I can rely on. (I also don't get tired of the things I like, which is why I often order the same things at the restaurants we go to, and why I've seen Star Wars literally hundreds of times.) My little routines also help me to stay on track and be productive; without any concrete plans, I tend to just sort of relax and lose track of time.

Today, I figured I'd give you a peek into my daily routine. Since I'm such a creature of habit, it won't be too hard to remember what I do each day ;). I'm going to stick with the weekday routine, since it's a bit more fixed and definitely less embarrassing: the weekend edition involves far too much 'read the internet' and 'put feet up on the arm of the couch' for my ego to comfortably share.

vintage 1960s day dress and sears tower

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Review: House of Foxy

While the 1950s will always have my heart, sometimes I just can't resist the siren song of a 1940s silhouette. Case in point: this lovely red floral tea dress from the House of Foxy. I fell in love with it the first time I saw it, and had almost worked myself up to paying for international delivery when I discovered it on Unique Vintage's site during a sitewide sale!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

The Bus is Back

You may have seen me mention that I lived in LA for eight years before moving to Chicago. Well, I might not be an Angeleno by birth, but as a lifelong gearhead (or petrolhead, for my British readers), I certainly appreciated living in a place that showed so much love to the automobile.

Trashy Diva red picnic Lena dress and lola von rose purse

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Review: Pretty Dress Company Priscilla

Like seemingly everyone who's put on a Pretty Dress Company frock, I'm a massive fan! Ever since I saw the yellow gingham Priscilla swing dress on the lovely Miss Amy May, I've been longing for one of my very own. So when the Pretty Dress Co. offered worldwide free shipping in May, I jumped at the chance to grab one for my own without paying close to $40 in shipping fees, and today I'm finally sharing a long-overdue review of this gorgeous sundress!

Pretty Dress Company Priscilla

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Maternity Photo Shoot!

Last weekend, I was lucky enough to spend a leisurely morning with my friend Devinne, strolling around the University of Chicago campus for a maternity photo shoot (!!!) before eating all the brunch. I'm beyond excited to share some of the photos from our shoot with you today! Brace yourself for a zillion exclamation points (and photos)...

Saturday, July 8, 2017

What I've Learned From My Parents

One thing you might not know about me is that I'm quite close with my dad. I've written quite a bit about the women in my family before, but recently I realized that surprisingly, I haven't really shared too much about my dad.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Babymoon: Lincoln Park Zoo

Every once in a while, I realize that for all my efforts to see major landmarks and local attractions, I've been missing out on a major one. (This is why I went to the Bronx Zoo for the first time at twenty years old, despite living forty-five minutes away, and why I still haven't seen the Statue of Liberty up close.) Recently, our Chicago staycation adventures took us to one of the most glorious places I've yet seen out here: Lincoln Park and its famous zoo!

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Red, White, and Hearts and Found

Happy Fourth of July, everyone! I've honestly felt more conflicted than usual about celebrating the Fourth this year, and I wasn't even sure if I wanted to mark the holiday with a post. As I said last year, I'm not much of a flag-waver.

hearts and found elizabeth dress

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Babymoon: A Walk in the Park

I'm still playing catch-up in the ongoing quest to document all my Chicago adventures, so it's time for another installment of food-and-sightseeing Stuff We Did. Jeff and I enjoyed last year's staycation so much that we decided to revisit the idea for a mini-babymoon last month. Needless to say, our babymoon itinerary was all about good food and interesting local destinations, and we started off on a high note: with Frontera Grill and some relaxed sightseeing around downtown Chicago.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

21 Things I'm Thankful For

This year has tested my natural optimism quite a bit. Recently, I wrote about my journey to accept my feelings of sadness and anxiety. And while I do think it's crucially important to learn to be ok with not feeling ok or upbeat all the time, I also make it a habit to consciously look for the bright side.

hell bunny sunflower dress