holiday dressing: part one // LBD

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planning holiday outfits can be stressful or incredibly fun. I always try to start early so I'm not scrambling around town looking for something last minute -- that usually ends up being something similar to what I always wear, not a great investment, or something that looks totally out of place in my closet. over the next couple of months, I'll be posting a series of holiday outfit options for family get-togethers, nights on the town with friends, and cozy nights around the dinner table. this week's outfits are fit for LBD lovers heading to (or hosting) a party. 

cool // dress / headband / bag / flats

quirky // dress / hair twist / ring / boots

siren // dress / bag / shoes

sixties // dress / shoes / earrings

classic // dress / shoes / bag

modern // dress / shoes / earrings

glam // dress / bag / shoes / earrings

decorating with odds + ends

I took these pictures a while back at my old place. I wanted to revisit them now because I'm still shifting around my decorations in our flat. above our couch, I put together a gallery wall using decorative prints from several sources. I had an old fashion print calendar just sitting around my office, so I clipped one of my favorite pages out (a vintage versace ad) and put it in a small frame. framing records isn't anything new, but I love how they can be changed out really easily and inexpensively to match other prints you have on hand. Mixing in different media and textures is also a good way to keep the whole thing from looking too neat. 

I'd also decorated a kitchen wall with these shelves from ikea. they are inexpensive and easy to install -- not to mention they make your prints, or in this case, books, pop with little effort. I loved this look so much, I recently mounted one of these shelved above my TV for a collection of our prints. best part: it only took about five minutes.

weekend warrior // october 17

I've been working my way through some cookbooks we received as wedding gifts and, boy, is my husband lucky. I have so many fall favorites coming up this week, starting with a hearty lentil soup tomorrow night. but speaking of fall -- confession: I haven't picked up a pumpkin yet! (it's shameful but true) Since we don't have a front porch anymore, I think I'll get a couple little guys tomorrow and do some sweet metallic sharpie designs on them. (inspired by this!) Such a fun project to do while catching up on all of the TV pilots for fall. (Already hooked on Marry Me, not too sure about A to Z ... )

I've also started looking at Christmas card designs. I know, I've lost it. 

img via thisinsignificantlife

real talk // redefining sucess

the subject of defining success has been on my mind a lot lately. the minute we moved to this city, I realized I had an opportunity to re-evaluate what that word really means to me.

I love to work hard, multitask and constantly improve, but at what point does having/doing it all start to hinder your happiness? and is it worth it?

I remembered back to an article in glamour by the poignant zoisa mamet and she brought out some real truths for me. I immediately felt vindicated. Here was another woman admitting exactly what I was feeling. maybe success doesn't have to mean running a successful corporation, winning project runway, or starring in your own youtube series. it's OK to not want those things! (even if everyone else is telling you that you should.)

success to one woman doesn't necessarily define success to another. just because we ladies have the opportunity to do all of these amazing things doesn't mean we are failures if we don't achieve or pursue every lofty goal set in front of us. you shouldn't have to feel like an underachiever just because one of your friends has a trendy start-up and another is a high-profile investment banker (or wants to be one). 

i believe it's all a balance. be proud of your achievements, work hard, and be successful on your own terms. remember, some women don't "want it all," they just want to be happy. 

// img via creating motherhood //