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Signet Rings

gold-signet-ring Vogue

With my impending nuptials just 37 days away, my monogram has been on my mind a lot. That may seem weird, but I am one of those closet prepsters that loves to have her monogram on bags, trays, jewelry, you name it. With my initials changing shortly, I have been contemplating dropping my middle name and making my current last name my new middle name, or maybe not. One thing is for sure, I never expected to be sad about losing my last name. I am excited to take my husband’s name, but there is some sadness saying goodbye to the one I’ve had for 32 years too. Anyway, all this monogram talk got me thinking about signet rings. I have been wanting one forever. A gold one or rose gold one only. Maybe now is the time to get it and it can me a reminder of my old name?

signet-rings SheRa Jewelry|Adult Runaway|Junam Jewelry|Ralph Lauren|Pinterest

I like them kind of chunky, not too dainty – a fit that is more like a man’s ring. Choosing what script to use is difficult though. They are just so beautiful and can be personalized which I love – not to mention, they are a great conversation piece and something you can pass down to future generations as an heirloom. These are a few of my favorites – prefer the circle or rounded version best, but the square one is pretty unique and statement-making too.

signet

Moon and Lola|Sarah Chloe|Ginette NY

xoxo

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Posted: 10th July 2014 | by: ashley | in: Fashion Inspiration, Pretty Things | Leave a comment
 

Save the Date

save-the-date-ashley-and-travis

I am sharing something very special with you today — the save the dates for our wedding! Forgive for two wedding related posts in a row, but with ten weeks to go, it’s where all my attention and energy are currently focused. My fiance is a damn fine graphic designer, so I was lucky enough to be able to leave the save the dates, invitations, place cards, menus, programs and all other design/paper related details up to his genius. And guys, I may be biased, but this guy is truly a design genius. He did such an awesome job with our Save the Dates. They were printed on small poster sized glossy paper and then folded so that when you unfolded them, you got the details and a new image on each section.

Here you have the cover of the little booklet, as well as the back – complete with the monogram of our initials that he created for our engagement (and subsequently had tattooed on his forearm—seriously, is there anything hotter than a guy getting tattooed with your initials?), and the address for the engagement website.

save-the-date-ashley-and-travis

Once you opened the booklet, you saw this:

save-the-date-ice-cream

Unfold it again, and you get our date…and him with a mouth full of whip cream courtesy of yours truly…

save-the-date

Unfold it for a third time (this one is my favorite)…

save-the-date-molly-moons

And finally, the paper, when unfolded entirely, shows this gorgeous image…the adventure begins.

save-the-date-beach

Gotta love marrying a fellow typography nerd — he nailed it with these fonts — and the design, obvi.

xoxo

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Posted: 5th June 2014 | by: ashley | in: My Life | 1 Comment
 

Love Songs

As we get closer to the wedding (10 weeks!) we are getting into some of the really fun details — like picking your first dance song and your father-daughter dance. As we were sorting through the love songs on our extensive playlists (we’re both huge music lovers), I started compiling my own list of my all time favorite love songs. Those ones I can listen to over and over again and never get sick of, the ones with the lines that capture just how I’ve felt, the ones with the heart-wrenching melodies — I love a good love song, like most girls. The sad ones especially – what is that about? Anyway, today I’m sharing my Spotify playlist with you of my top, all time favorite love songs – some are new, some are old, there are some smaller artists, there are some huge bands, and in the list you can find our first dance song and a couple other songs we’ll definitely be using during the wedding. You will not find: Meatloaf, Lady in Red, Michael Bolton (or as my dad refers to him, Michael Revoltin’ – ba-dum ching), My Heart Will Go On, or Every Rose Has It’s Thorn.

So, can you guess which one is our first dance song?

xoxo

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Posted: 4th June 2014 | by: ashley | in: My Life | Leave a comment
 

Grace Ciao Flower Illustrations

grace-ciao-illustrations

I recently stumbled on the fashion illustrations from Grace Ciao, a business student in Singapore who does freelance illustrations in her free time. I love fashion illustrations. I have an entire folder on Pinterest dedicated to the fashion illustrations I want to frame and put on the wall in my fabulous dressing room someday. These ones are special though – Grace uses real flowers to create the most magnificent dresses made of real petals. It is so artistic and so incredibly creative. I am in awe of the pieces she creates with these flowers. They would make truly stunning dresses in real life.

grace-ciao-flower-dresses

Lillies, irises, carnations—it’s the perfect kind of artwork and imaginative design that every woman who wanted to be a fairy princess as a little girl would delight in. I hope she goes on to be a designer once she finishes business school. The girl clearly has talent.

grace-ciao-petal-dress

xoxo

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Posted: 30th May 2014 | by: ashley | in: Designer Spotlight, Pretty Things | Leave a comment
 

A Little YSL Love

Tres charmant! A little YSL lipstick love for your Thursday. I adore these pretty dancing tubes of lipstick.

xoxo

Via Rene Hauser

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Posted: 29th May 2014 | by: ashley | in: Hair & Beauty, Pretty Things, Uncategorized | Leave a comment
 

National Stationery Show

national-stationery-show-2014 Parrot Design Studio

This past week the National Stationery Show was held at the Javitts Center in NYC. I’m not a designer or graphic artist, but I know this because as a die-hard paper lover and fiend, I follow a lot of different stationers and paper people on my Instagram feed. All week long, I saw updates with darling cards, beautiful notebooks, charming pads of paper, and creative wrapping supplies. It may sound ridiculous to some, but things like that really get my blood flowing. Pens and paper have been some of my favorite things to shop for since I was a kid and it was time for back-to-school supply shopping at the local OfficeMax. I only wish my desk was big enough to hold a never ending supply of cards and paper supplies – I dream of having a whole closet full of paper goodies in fact – so I always have the just the right thing for any given occasion. I am a firm believer in snail mail and handwritten notes to just say hello or thank you. They have so much more meaning and love infused into them.  In any case, check out some of my favorite Instagram snaps from the week at NSS.

KateSpade-NSS-2014 Kate Spade and Shindig Paperie

Kate Spade is always one of my favorites. She has the snarkiest, most clever and creative sayings on her designs, and they are always bright and colorful. A winning combination in my book! The calendars from Shindig Paperie are darling as well – I find it hard to pass up a good gold polka dot print – don’t you?

nss-2014-nyc-javitts-center Think and Ink Studio, Sarah J. Champion, Lili Koi, Benchpressed, Egg Press, Grey Moggie

These colorful wrapping papers are anything but boring and work for any occasion, and the card about the peonies? It couldn’t be more true! Of course, I have a special soft spot for the cute bride card!

sugar-paper-nss-2014 Sugar Paper

But, my favorite paper people by far? Sugar Paper. I’ve never seen a design of theirs that I didn’t want to buy and immediately run home to use. Perhaps it’s the ample use of gold polka dots (I told you how I feel about gold polka dots, people), but the products are also so well made with such quality – and the fonts are always spot on. Paper lovers notice these things, you know. I can’t wait for these collections to hit stores. My stash is running a little low….

xoxo

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Posted: 23rd May 2014 | by: ashley | in: Pretty Things | Leave a comment
 

How to Style a Bookshelf

how-to-style-a-bookshelf Via Chloe Rose Boutique

Have you guys heard about the new “shelfie” trend? Essentially, it involves taking photos of your awesomely arranged shelves. I admit, I have a penchant for beautifully merchandised and organized shelves. I even have a board on my Pinterest page dedicated to stunning displays and it takes me days of arranging and rearranging to get my bookshelves the way I want them when I move. When I get something new like a candle, book, photo frame or piece of artwork, I then rearrange the bookshelf display all over again. And I enjoy it! So, here are some of my tips for putting together the perfectly styled shelves.

how-to-style-a-bookshelf The Coveteur

Don’t worry about making sure all the books are lined up going the same way like on plain old bookshelves of yester-year. Play with stacks of books that are done both horizontally and vertically, and try putting them together in a triangle formation – from biggest to smallest.

how-to-style-a-bookshelf Danielle Oakey Interiors

If you’re on Pinterest, I know you’ve run across those bookshelves that are grouped entirely according to color — dozens of books lined up according to color, like a rainbow. While you don’t have to go all out and colorize each shelf, you can try groupings that are all within one color scheme.

how-to-style-a-bookshelf Julie Leah

Do you collect Precious Moment figurines? Shells from your beach vacations? Pez dispensers? Add them to your bookshelves and proudly fly that freak flag. I personally love the idea of adding a few pairs of shoes to a bookshelf – I mean, many of them are true works of art, and if you have a bookshelf in your boudoir, it will look just right.

how-to-style-a-bookshelf Stylish Bird Blog

Add some artwork to the shelf. A print propped behind a stack of books can provide a fun backdrop that jazzes things up a bit. You can also throw in pieces like bowls, vases, sculptures and more, to add keep things interesting.

how-to-style-a-bookshelf Centsational Girl

Layer things one on top of another in varying heights. It doesn’t look right when things are all the same height, and it gives you a chance to display some of your favorite pieces so that people notice them. Pretty little bowls on top of storage boxes, plants on top of stacks of books — even photo frames in front of a row of books.

Do you have any tips for organizing your bookshelves so they stand out? I would love to hear them!

xoxo

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Posted: 8th May 2014 | by: ashley | in: Places & Spaces, Pretty Things | Leave a comment
 

What’s In My Shopping Bag

shopping-retail-therapy

Sometimes I put off purchasing the things I know I really need to update in my closet or I’ll have been wanting for a long time to buy something because I’ll find something that I know may not be around in a few weeks or months, and I will buy that instead. These past few weeks though, I’ve finally picked up a few of the things I’ve had on my  list for awhile.

The J.Crew “Kiss” t-shirt was just a lucky find. It came out almost a year ago, I think, but it was gone by the time I got to the store to get mine – it sold out fast and I was so bummed. A couple weeks ago, I stopped by the J.Crew Factory store north of Seattle, and there it was. It is so soft and perfectly slouchy – plus, graphic tees are no where near going out of style anytime soon.

Bobbi Brown Beach Shower Gel was just a fun “treat yo-self” purchase I picked up at the Bluemercury store opening in Seattle’s University Village last week. If you haven’t been yet, you have to go! They only carry the best of the best, and the displays are gorgeous – not to mention, tempting. They also have a spa on the premises. I love love love the smell of Bobbi Brown’s Beach scent. It smells like my childhood summers – sunscreen but also a bit floral. I’ve never had the shower gel before, and figured, why not add it to the collection? Clearly, I am CRAVING summer in Seattle.

The Ban.do tote is one of my favorite recent purchases – it is so me. Stripes and a neon pink heart. I use it as my tote bag for work – filled to bursting with my lunch, notebooks and a good book for my lunch break.

The mirrored Ray Ban Aviators have been on my most coveted list for a long time. They went on sale at Nordstrom last week, and I just couldn’t resist any longer. Another example of my yearning for summer around these parts…plus, the mirrored lenses are just too cool for school. I like the added flash they give to this classic style.

The Kendra Scott earrings have also been a highly coveted item for me for awhile. I have just never been able to pick which color. She has so many bright, fun colors I’ve always had a hard time picking which ones I would get. I regularly would visit the Nordstrom counter and try on at least four different colors and hem and haw over which ones were best. (Note: they ALL were the best). I finally picked the turquoise with the help of my fiance.

Lastly, it was high time for me to replace my white Converse All Stars this month. They are my favorite sneaks of all time, and in white, need to be replaced somewhat regularly since they get dingy. This year, the sales guy at Nordstrom pointed out the new slip on version and I was instantly sold. Just when I thought they couldn’t get more comfortable…

Needless to say, I’ve given my credit card a workout at Nordstrom in the past couple months. And my closet is delighted with it. As am I.

What have you picked up on your recently shopping travels? Inquiring minds want to know!

xoxo

 

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Posted: 7th May 2014 | by: ashley | in: Hair & Beauty, My Life, Retail Therapy | Leave a comment
 

The 2014 Met Ball and Costume Institute Gala

reese-witherspoon-met-ball-2014 All photos via The New York Times

My favorite red carpet event of the entire year isn’t the Oscars or the Golden Globes. It’s the Costume Insitute’s Met Ball. The fashion caliber here is unbeatable. The designers are there, the models are there, the actors and stars are there – and everyone always seems to take more of a risk than on the usual red carpet. Not to mention, each Met Ball has it’s own theme and some attendees get very into the theme, making for some prime fashion viewing. This year definitely did NOT disappoint. It was hard to pick a favorite—and there were plenty I didn’t care for (I am looking at you, Maggie Gyllenhaal – I don’t care if it was Valentino)—but I think Reese Witherspoon’s Stella McCartney gown was the one that gave me the most fashion envy and truth be told, total goosebumps. The color is bold and that neckline is unbelievable.

I was also a huge fan of the big ball gowns that seemed to be so popular this year. Massive sweeping skirts reminiscent of the golden age of Hollywood glamour. Karen Elson in the blush pink gown reminded me of an Old Hollywood movie star like Rita Hayworth or Katherine Hepburn. I marveled at the architectural sculpting of Karolina Kurkova’s navy gown, and surprised myself by really loving Hayden Panettiere’s full skirted ball gown. It could easily have gone either way and I am sure it is one of those love it or hate it gowns, but I think the print is gorge.

2014-met-ball-costume-institute-gala

Aside from Reese, my top three picks went to Blake Lively (duh, I’ve had a massive girl crush on her since the pilot of Gossip Girl…or maybe it was Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, but I’m not ready to own up to how many times I’ve seen that particular movie), Emma Stone and Taylor Swift. Emma Stone’s dress was so fresh and different from all the others, and the colors looked so stunning on her. Taylor’s style I am usually so bored with – the same bejeweled frocks time after time, but this pale pink embroidered column with the train was just lovely. Again, it was old Hollywood glamour all the way – same with Blake’s deep golden mauve beaded dress. A throwback silhouette with modern updates. Honestly, that girl would look good in a sheet.

costume-institute-gala-met-ball-2014

Who were your favorite picks at the Met Ball this year? Tell me what I missed!

xoxo

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Posted: 6th May 2014 | by: ashley | in: Pretty Things, Style Icon | Leave a comment
 

Spring Trend: Lilac

Lilac

One of my all time favorite things about spring is lilacs. I wish they bloomed year round – their fragrance is intoxicating to me. I can’t get enough. I’ve even been known to take long walks around my neighborhood with scissors trimming the ones that happen to encroach over the borders of the sidewalk. Fair game, right?! I hope someday I have a dozen lilac bushes in my yard. Anyway, it clearly delights me that this spring, the shades of lilacs are trending across all areas – from eyeshadow and nail polish to clothing and accessories. And you better believe Lilac Path from Aerin is on my list of fragrances to add to my ever-growing collection.

How are you wearing lilac this season?

xoxo

Scarf|Nail Polish|Clutch|Perfume

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Posted: 5th May 2014 | by: ashley | in: Now Trending, Pretty Things | 4 Comments
 
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