May 10, 2017

10 Modern Preppy Essentials for Summer

While I’ve never attended prep school, as a New Englander I’m no stranger to the occasional popped collar or monogrammed accessory. Preppy style just goes so naturally with this coastal area, like dropping “r”from the end of words and complaining about the weather. Windswept beaches and Hunter boots? Madras plaid and Cape Cod? Nude flats and…everything? All the yes.

But it’s too easy to go overboard and start looking like a Stepford wife in head-to-toe classics. So I started with ten essential preppy pieces and found updated versions with a twist or maybe a teeny bit of edge. Traditional can be a good thing, but shaking things up is refreshing – let’s give it the old college try, shall we?

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May 9, 2017

Spring Jackets

Spring! Look how springy these photos are! Sunny! Gorgeous! (Crying face emoji here) NO. Gray. Still gray. But this jacket makes me happy. It’s brighter and lighter yet provides that bit of warmth we inevitably need in the PNW this time of year. And it’s not a raincoat. So I’m stoked about that. Light jackets are my jam and I’ve found some gems for spring that are easy to throw on with anything for that transitional weather…

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May 4, 2017

Styling Spring Work Wear Pieces for the Weekend

Ok. Confession time, y’all. Can you believe this tattooed, Portlander, artist girl was once in a sorority? Hahaha. I can’t either. Kappa Kappa Gamma, ladies. But that was just what you did in the South in college. And parts of it were a serious blast. And we wore all the preppy 90’s clothing you can imagine.

These days I don’t work in an office or have the need (or desire) to dress the same way I once did, but I still find myself drawn to a few things you’d consider preppy…like crisp cotton tops in blue and white stripe. I die over them. I cannot quit the stripes. Ever. But I always have to play with ways to make these structured, put-together pieces more me. That usually means black or ripped denim and, in this case, it meant both!

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April 28, 2017

Cozy Neutrals to Transition Your Home to Spring

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The longer days and the way the air smells after a cold spring rain (aiming for a positive spin on current New England weather, how am I doing?) call for opening the windows wide and throwing off the once comforting, now suffocating heavy flannel sheets and velvet throws. I see you, 7 PM sunset, and I’m glad you’re here. Like a lot of us, I was so inspired by A’s ode to decorating with white and the clean, airy images of spring home decor flooding online shops right now. Bring on the light and bright, whether it’s cottony soft, nubby knit, or heavenly sheepskin to warm still chilly morning floors, all in soft, neutral hues to usher in a new season. Here’s what’s tempting me to “refresh my nest” this season.

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April 14, 2017

An Easy Spring Outfit and An Everyday Adventure

I have a poster framed in our guest room that reads “I do believe it’s time for another adventure.” I crave exploring, travel and finding new places. I’m always amazed when I find out about an incredible new spot right here at home.

How did I not know about this epic location here in Portland? Gorgeous, right? It’s called Rocky Butte and it was the site of a little day adventure for me. Yes, a rainy day adventure, but fortunately the downpours held off while I looked around and snapped a few pictures and took a minute to myself to clear my head.

I want to be a laid-back person, a laid-back mom. I really do. I’m not overly emotional most of the time and I approach a lot of life in a pretty matter-of-fact way, but I’m a perfectionist and a serial do-er. Idle hands and all, I guess. I have a frantic need to check off that to-do list everyday.  And I have a bad habit of making myself feel guilty if I don’t get through that list. I mistakenly think because I enjoy my work or because I’m not going 100mph every second of the day that I don’t need to set aside time to myself. It’s so hard not to listen to those voices all the time, right?

But, on this morning, I ventured out, ignored those voices and that to-do list and just enjoyed a spectacular view of the city I love. Yes, I’ll bring Sienna here sometime, but this day was just for me…

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April 5, 2017

Colorful Spring Athleisure Picks

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As much as I love gray and black, at this point in the year I’m in desperate need for some color. The longer days and patches of grass peeking through are encouragement that there’s a light at the end of the winter tunnel and I’m feeling festive. Since you can find me wearing leggings and a hoodie most days (it’s the perfect outfit for working from home and toddler wrangling!), I guess I’m the designated ‘Sporty Spice’ around here. Good thing, because I had so much fun browsing all the new spring athleisure and putting together fun color combos. Easiest way to add color: start with a pair of wild pants and pick one of the colors for a hoodie, like I did with these bright blue Zella live in leggings (aka party pants) and dusty pink Superdry hoodie. Unexpected and definitely a mood booster! Check out the other yummy new spring colors I found…

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April 3, 2017

Supportive Swimwear for Larger Busts: Our 2017 Picks

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Hey all! We’ve been getting tons of questions from you ladies about swim styles that offer a bit more support up top, especially for larger busts. It can be really disappointing when you love a certain style, only to try it on and feel like the designers forgot about that silly thing called gravity? Or if you’ve nursed a few babes and now find you need more than stretchy fabric to keep things where they should be, we’ve got you covered.

When you’re looking for supportive swim tops, it helps to skim the description for these key words: underwire, hidden or otherwise; side boning (your hubby will probably find that amusing if his sense of humor hasn’t evolved much since junior high, like mine’s); and 3-row 2-column (or some combination) hook & eye closure like regular bras & sports bras have for extra security.

I found so many good choices this year, even more so than in years past. I noticed a happy and inclusive trend this year that stylish and on-trend swim brands are making the same style in regular, larger cup sizes and plus sizes. Yay for finally recognizing bodies come in more sizes than small, medium and large! I grouped swim styles by tankini/bikini and one-pieces, so everyone can find their comfortable level of coverage.

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March 20, 2017

Naples, FL: What To Do (And Wear)

As Spring Break approaches I find myself a leetle regretful that I didn’t plan a warm weather trip for us this year. I mean, we’re so much closer to Hawaii here in Portland and we still haven’t been…next year maybe I can write a travel post on that trip! (Pinky, are you reading…)

We were fortunate enough to get to visit my parents in February in South Florida this year, though, for some sunshine. (You may have seen a few pics on my Instagram account @elletrain) The weather was in the low 80’s for at least half of our trip and it was lovely. We got a date night, I got some mama time and of course we had some trips to the beach while we were there. I did a little run-down here of some of our favorite activities and some suggestions on what to wear and pack if you’re planning a trip to the Sunshine State.

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March 14, 2017

Choker Tops: Necklace and Top in One Easy Piece

Friends. You most likely know by now I don’t accessorize a lot. I wear the same earrings most days, my wedding and engagement rings and sunglasses on a good day. Necklaces? Um, I have some that mostly spend their time in my closet. I’ve recently discovered a solution to my laziness or inability to choose the right necklace for the outfit…buy a top with the necklace built-in! Voila. Look at me, accessorizing. Does this count? I think so. Not only are these tops easy, but they’re just the right amount of sexy, too. Comfy and appropriate for a night out? My sweet spot. I found two tops that I love…check it.

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March 1, 2017

My New Favorite Swimsuit: The High-Neck

Going somewhere warm for Spring Break? We will be heading to the Oregon Coast, so I will not be sporting a swimsuit this time. Brrrr. But, we recently spent a week in South Florida with my parents and I discovered my new favorite swimsuit style – the high neck suit.

Why is this my new favorite style, you might ask? Because I don’t like to worry about pulling a Janet Jackson while picking up shells or playing with Sienna on the beach. I know, I’m not a risk taker. I’m ok with that.

But seriously, this is a great style for mamas as the girls stay nicely in place. The halter neck also gives them a little lift, which I’ll be the first to admit mine definitely need.

@krembdelakremb was sporting a high-neck style last year in one of her IG posts and it intrigued me. I bought this top above at the end of the summer wanting to try it out. I finally did and I LOVE it. (Sadly, my exact top is no where to be found, but this one is super similar).

I’ve rounded up some of my favorite bikinis, tanks and one-pieces all with high-necks below, just in time for Spring Break…

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