Friday, August 31, 2012

Friday's Fancies #35: Labor Day Whites

This week flew by.
There isn't a shortage of work to be done at the new job- but I can't complain because it makes the days go by insanely fast. So fast, in fact- that I'm kind of in denial that it's already Labor Day weekend. What the hell August?! Where'd you go?!

Anyway- I know that whole "no white bottoms after labor day" nonsense is out there (which I fully don't intend on following)- and so it inspired me to throw together some of my possibly post-labor day approved white items:

This Kate Spade Rock the Casbah purse has been on this blog before...I can't help it. It's too perfect not to.
These Marc by Marc Jacobs Earrings may or may not have had an appearance too, but hey..they're one of my favorite white items- so deal with it!
 Who wants to get me this Marc by Marc Jacobs Classic Q Utica bag? What? No takers?
 I have absolutely nowhere to wear this TOPSHOP Sparkle Dress but I kind of would love to have a nice bun on top of my head and twirl around in it...
 What better white watch is there beyond the Michael Kors Large Dylan Watch? None. 
 I've been eyeing these Jack Rodgers Navajos, but feel silly getting them with summer coming to an end. Next year?
This Sibel Crystal Embellished Shirt is for a major treat yo'self moment. But dang it sure is pretty.

What white item would you like to add to your collection?
I'm thinking it might finally be time to Rock the Casbah (it's on sale people! it was meant to be!)

xo, lp

Thursday, August 30, 2012


Gold rings people. That's where it's all at. Period.
This is coming from a girl with unattractive fingers. No, but really. I don't have long, elegant, dainty fingers (piano player fingers as my music teacher called them). I have short, stubby fingers. And yet, I love me some rings nowadays. So you should too (stubby fingers or not):

1. This Kate Spade Anchor Ring is just perfectly nautical, no?
2.  I NEED this Initial Signet Ring in "L". It seems like something vintage my grandmother would have had. Love.
3. I already featured these Jules Smith Edie Thin Stacking Rings , but they're perfect enough to get a second mention.
4.  I can't think of a more simple, sweet ring than this Jacquie Aiche Diamond Waif Bezel Ring.
5. I own this Whistles Spade Charm Ring and can't say enough good things about it. Just google ring size to figure out what size you need. Cheap and gorgeous!
5. This Bing Bang Eternity Skull Ring is for you slightly edgy ladies out there...enjoy!
6. Again, ladylike and lovely: Jacquie Aiche Bezel Waif Ring
7. How 'come HOH always does it right? :House of Harlow 1960 Dipped Pave Ring 
8. This Tory Burch Striped Logo Ring almost has a funky retro vibe to it, and if TB isn't usually in your budget-- this affordable ring is a great way to have Tory without a huge price tag!

Which gold ring is on you wish list? 
That Initial Signet


Wednesday, August 29, 2012


I'm a little too tired for to talk much today- but then again, these pictures don't really need much explaining...




No Source. Whoever originally pinned it uploaded it ...
Totally doing a wood DIY.
How cool would the small ones be turned into handles for dresser drawers??


Tuesday, August 28, 2012


Here's what's going to happen:
You're going to make this recipe, and then email me thanking me later.
Because it's easy & delicious.
Another reason?
Because it seems fancy if you make it for dinner guests. Even though its just juice, water, and sugar.
I give to you:

I had never had granita until the fine dining restaurant I used to work at started making it. They were geniuses, because it costs next to nothing to make (great margins, guys!), but is so. dang. good. It takes a little patience, but the end result is worth it.

What you'll need to make it happen:
3 cups water
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups freshly squeeze lime juice
10 basil leaves
zest of one lime (more if you want to garnish with it)

How to make it happen:
Step 1: Mix your sugar, basil leaves, and water in a sauce pan, and bring to a boil while stirring. Let simmer for a minute, and set aside to cool for about an hour. If you're impatient like I am, stick it in the fridge to cool it faster.
Step 2: Strain out your basil leaves, and mix in your lime juice and zest.
Step 3: Set this mixture in a 9x13 pan (mine was glass) and put it in the freezer.
Step 4: Every half hour or so, scrape the mixture with a fork, creating small crystals. Break up any large lumps! Do this on repeat for a couple of hours, or until well frozen into crystals.
Step 5: Serve in a small bowl, grate lime zest over and garnish with basil leaves!

* If you want more of a strong basil flavor, you can always thinly shred basil leaves and add them to the frozen mixture!
* If limes are too sour for you, try a little bit sweeter of a fruit!
* To make it even more fun, add a low alcohol liqueur to the mix. I'm going to try grapefruit juice and Campari next I think...

What flavor granita will you be making?
*yes, I said will be, not would! make it people!

xo, lp

Monday, August 27, 2012


This weekend by so fast I'm a little upset about it. We did a million things and had a wonderful time...and yet it just wasn't enough. Is it Labor Day weekend yet? Please?
Besides eating a great dinner and having an exorbitant about of wine while playing Scrabble and Apples to Apples with Lauren and our boys, we managed to finally get a dining room table in our apartment like real adults (Thanks S+L)! 
Here's my weekend brain dump:
We went to the Farmer's Market this weekend and along with our usual giant bag of kettlecorn we got this HUGE zucchini for $1. Yeah. Wait. Scratch that. Hell yeah. There is so much zucchini bread making in my future. Get ready for about 3490234 recipes including zucchini, my friends.
via Instagram
I never used to like rings much, and then out of nowhere I'm a big fan.I know, this is probably wildly exciting to you, right? Well I said it was a brain dump!  My Spade Ring came last week and it's tiny and pretty and needs a few friends... and I think These Jules Smith Edie Thin Stacking Rings are kind of perfect.
Images via ShopBop(find them there!)
I have been cooking/baking up a storm lately. More than usual. I have a ridiculous amount of recipes I'm going to be sharing on the blog coming up, so be ready. Tomorrow's recipe led to this:
The weather in Wisconsin cannot make up it's mind. One day the air has the chill of fall, one day it's 93 and sunny. Dresses one day, pants the next. GO AWAY SUMMER. GIVE ME FALL!
via Instagram
Overall I haven't been the biggest fan of the scallop trend (so sue me) but somehow I think this miiiiight just change my mind. Fall bag, anyone
via ASOS
How was your weekend?
Buy any oversized zucchinis?

xo, lp 

Friday, August 24, 2012

Friday's Fancies #34: Road Trip Time

I rock at roadtrips.
No, but really. I'm not just talking about a few measly hours. I mean the legit, long distance road trips.
My senior year in college 5 friends and I drove to Pasadena to see the Badgers in the Rose Bowl. If you'd like to calculate that- it's about 40 hours each way. We drove straight through. No stopping. No hotels. 
In case you're new to the blog, you probably didn't see our epic road trip a few months ago I documented on Instagram. Michael and I were living in Virginia, and before we moved back to Wisconsin we drove up to Maine, hitting every single East Coast state on the way, then over to WI. 

I rest my case. I feel like I've proven myself to you. Thus, take my advice when I say I know how to dress for a road trip. This outfit is perfect for a fall trip in the car:
 Make sure you have sunglasses, there's nothing worse than a staring at the sun headache. Check out these perfect tortoise ASOS sunglasses (under $15!).

If you're the passenger and you're anything like I am, you want to be able to kick off your shoes. These mauve GAP Scrunch Flats are perfect slip on flats in case you make a quick pitstop to see the world's largest ball of yarn.

You all know I love gigantic jewelry- but when in comes to road trips, I ain't messin' with any of that. Simple studs all the way, like these Marc by Marc Jacobs studs will do just fine. 

Gosh this striped knitted sweater looks comfy, eh? Do I need to justify it? No. 

 I know people might think yoga pants should be a go-to road trip bottom. Well, I disagree. If you're going to be getting out, seeing things, eating dinner, taking pictures, my vote is for jeans. Especially with the soft, stretchy, comfy jeans out there today, like these: TopShop comfy jeans!

Okay, I get you're probably all thinking I'm crazy with Kate Spade Passport Holder in my mix, but let me justify. If you're really taking an all out- where the road takes you road trip, always have your passport. Case  in point : When Michael and I were on the epic road trip I mentioned above we stopped in Niagra Falls. We  turned on the GPS to leave & start heading toward Ohio. Long story short we ended up going through a toll and realized they were asking for Canadian money. Turns out the fastest way to get there was through Canada. Welp, dear M doesn't have a passport so we couldn't get through. The attendant wouldn't let us through so he had to back up the line to let us out #embarrassing. Just bring a passport and cover it in a cute cover, okay?

Anyone else bring a passport with them on roadtrips?
Or try to sneak into Canada like it's nobody's business?


Thursday, August 23, 2012


True life: I had never heard of Madewell until I started blogging. So...less than a year, folks. 
To be fair, we don't have them in Minnesota or Wisconsin, so that counts for something, right? 

Anyways, since I'm a Madewell newb, everything they have right now seems to be shiny and wonderful and lovely. Here are a few of my favorites:
* Mustard is everywhere this fall. These Golden Ochre Film Noir Pumps kinda kill it.   
*Simplicity is best :  Provence Blue Gypsystone Earrings.
*Gorgeous blue- I know you frenchy loving bloggers need this Parisienne Storyteller Scarf!
* Perfect fall bag: The Leather Transport Tote. End of story.
  * Lovely, lovely leopard. Gimme these Sidewalk Skimmers in Leopard Print. Now.
* Dark jeans + grey tee + pop of color in the form of a Skinny Mint Patent Belt
 *Lady like and sparkly:  Mini Bow Studs
* Face it, the world is chambray obsessed- perfect summer to fall transition: Chambray Sleeveless Top
* Why do I love everything cobalt? Cobalt Suede Camden Bag
 * How sassy & sweet are these Polka Dot Film Noir Pumps ?
 * Delicate perfection: Tree Twig Necklace.

Which Madewell items had you at hello?
Need. That. Leather. Tote. Now.

xo, lp

Wednesday, August 22, 2012


Here's the deal:
I know tortoise shell isn't a new thing. People have been loving it for a while, I know. I just figured it was time to proclaim my love for it. So far I have a tortoise shell watch and pair of sunglasses- but a few of these babies are on my short list:

1. I'm not a hoop earring wearer at all- but there is something about these Ralph Lauren ones that are insanely funky. Sock bun, hoops, white tee and dark jeans, anyone?
2. I love my tortoise watch (no longer available online), and as much as I wanted a Michael Kors one, it wasn't quite in my budget. This Style & Co one is under $30! 
3. I've shown these TopShop tortoise rainboots before, but they are way too awesome not to share again! I think I'd be a little less cranky on a rainy day if these were on my feet.
4. I haven't worn headbands in ages, but this J.Crew one may take a necessary trip down memory lane. Man, my 12 year old self would think I was fashionable...
5. Since I couldn't get my MK fix in come watch purchasing time, this MK tortoise bangle is a way to make it happen. 
6. Do I need to justify these sunglasses to you? No? I didn't think so. If Jackie O was into tortoise majorly, these would be for her. ASOS has them retailing at $20
Which tortoise item would you take home with you?
Team big sunglasses, all the way!


Tuesday, August 21, 2012


Homemade salsa is delicious. It's just a fact. Ever since Michael and I found the most perfect salsa at a tiny restaurant in RVA I've been trying my best to replicate it. With this recipe, I think I've almost got it! Clearly there isn't a whole lotta skill when it comes to mashing things together to make salsa, but dang it's good.
What you'll need:
9 large roma tomatoes
1/2 small onion (diced)
3 large cloves garlic (minced)
1 medium jalapeño (minced) 
seasoning: 1/4 teaspoon salt & 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lime juice (optional)
1/4 cup cilantro
 How to make it happen:
Step 1: De-seed your jalapeño and throw it into a food processor along with your garlic cloves. Process until minced.
Step 2: Parboil your tomatoes & peel the skins off. De-seed and lightly process in the food processor. If you like your salsa smooth, go crazy. If you like it chunky, process half the tomatoes and dice up the rest. 
Step 3: Dice your onion and add it to your tomato-garlic-jalapeño mixture.
Step 4: Add your lime juice, salt, and pepper. Mix well.
Step 5: Shred your cilantro, mix it in, and serve!

Yes, it tastes as good as it looks.
 Now that I've got a full stock of fresh salsa and chips I'm ready to have people over and make some margaritas. 
Who's game?


Monday, August 20, 2012


Oh hey. If you're looking for a cohesive post, this one may not be for you (don't hate me Christin)! 
Here's what's up with me lately. Prepare to be riveted. 

Thing 1: This baby went on sale, and it's mine. All. Mine. will be once it arrives in the mail (with free shipping, mind you).  Is it not the perfect little tiny spade ring? 
Get it here! (photo via ASOS)
Thing 2: The weather in the Midwest has been insanely perfect. Almost too perfect. I snapped this on the ride back to WI this weekend:
(Find me on Instagram HERE!)
Thing 3: I made salsa yesterday and it freaking rocks. Yeah. Horn tooted. Recipe tomorrow. 
Thing 4: Each time Michael and I get up early to get the apartment put together, the below is what ends up happening. Yes, I wear penguin pajamas. 24 going on 4. Deal with it.
Thing 5: I bought this sweater yesterday. I just thought I'd let you all know I intend to style it with a skirt that is longer than an inch from my lady parts, unlike the model. 
(photo via forever 21)
How was your weekend? 
What random 5 things should I know?

xo, lp


Friday, August 17, 2012

Friday's Fancies #33: Wear the Sunset

This week's FF is all about Wearing the Sunset. 
While I normally would do a full outfit inspired by the theme, this week I decided some accessories would be fun! Rather than wearing clothing items in these colors, I'd much rather use them in small doses in the form of accessories:

 red:  bracelet  //    clutch   //    flats   
orange:  bracelet  //  clutch   //  necklace
yellow: bracelet   //   earrings    // loafers 

Which sunset item is your favorite?
All I have to say is, gimme those loafers, Gap!

xo, lp

Shop the Sunset:

Thursday, August 16, 2012

DIY Ombre Tray

As you all saw yesterday, LPF Mag is now live! Lauren was sweet enough to let me contribute an article, and it wasn't hard to choose the topic I wanted to focus on. In case you haven't gathered by previous projects like my Kate Spade Gold Dotted Tray or Kelly Green Bookends, I love me some good old fashioned thriftin'. Yep, I'm glamorous like that. 

I won't go into too much detail about the project- I'll let ya check out LPF Mag for that, but I will say that I fully support checking out your local thrift stores for possible DIY projects!
Here's what I started out with: 

 And here's what I ended up with:
 This tray is perfect for a coffee table tray, or for displaying jewelry!!

What great thrift store DIYs have you done?
Make sure you check out LPF mag to see more on the tray!

xo, lp

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

LPF Mag is LIVE!!

So here's the deal.
Lauren from La Petite Fashionista has been working on the first of issue of her digital mag, LPF Mag for a long time, perfecting every inch of it...and it's LIVE now people!!! If you don't already know Lauren, take my word for it- she's insanely sweet and down to earth, and really stays true to herself in her blog. (We also work a few desks away from each other now that I got my new job!)

I can't even fathom how much work it took to get it all together, especially wrangling all of us article writers together to get our stuff in on time (yes, I said "us"- you'll find a spread from me in there too!). I have to say, I love print magazines, but digital mags are growing on me. With just a click on a link in the mag you can find all the people, places, and things shown! 
(If the video above isn't workin' for you, just click HERE!!)
So please go check it out and show Lauren some love!
You can find LPF Mag on: Twitter/Facebook/ Pinterest

xo, lp

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

No-Fail Pesto Recipe(s)

Hi. Let's talk pesto.
I don't know about you, but I love the stuff. Michael and I have it at least once a week, whether it's on pasta or my favorite oven roasted tomato & pesto crostini
It's easy to buy premade pesto - but it's just about as easy to make it! This post has a few different pesto recipes, based on season, preference, and food allergies. You're welcome, friends.
To prove how much I love pesto, I'll share this bit of info with y'all: 
We moved into our apartment a week ago, and even though we don't have a couch, dining room table, or even shelves set up; we have a basil plant. Yep. You can get basil plants at Trader Joe's for $3.99! Even if you use all the leaves and never grow another on the plant, it's still worth it- basil can be expensive! 
Here he/she is hanging out on our balcony:
 So here's the situation. This recipe is my basic, summer pesto recipe. It only involves 5 ingredients. (I said basic!) Since basil can be hard to find/expensive in the winter, only my summer pesto recipe is made with 100% basil. Between farmer's markets and basil plants, it's totally affordable to use basil with no filler. 

Basic Summer Basil Pesto Recipe:
What you'll need:
4-5 cups of basil leaves
4 large cloves of garlic
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

How to make it happen:
Step 1: Clean garlic cloves and throw in food processor. Pulse until minced.
Step 2: Add basil leaves to processor one cup at a time, processing until chopped before adding another cup.
Step 3: Add salt & pepper, and slowly drizzle olive oil in while pulsing/processing on low speed
 Easy, right?
Now before you all get pissy on me saying "WAIT LAURA I THOUGHT PESTO HAD PINE NUTS IN IT! AND CHEESE!" calm yourself.
Like I said, this is my simple summer recipe- it's cheap & easy. Once you start adding in pine nuts & cheese the price goes up, and the people with silly food allergies can't have it. Let's face it, we should all be able to enjoy pesto! Before I get to sharing the other pesto recipes, take a look at the the picture below. On the left is my pesto, on the right is store bought. Just the color alone should convince you to make it fresh!
Okay, so now that you've calmed down about my simple pesto recipe not being up to your standards, I'll share the other options with you. The steps are essentially the same as the basic recipe, so I've mainly just shared ingredients & tips.

1. Winter Pesto: Spinach & Basil
Since basil can be expensive in the winter, spinach is a great filler. Still has a great taste, texture, etc- but for a fraction of the cost. 
What you'll need:
4 cups of spinach leaves  //   1 cup basil leaves  //  4 cloves garlic  //   1/2 teaspoon salt   // 1/2 teaspoon black pepper   //  2 teaspoons olive oil
(I add more pepper to give it a little more flavor for the winter time, and a little more olive oil to help smooth out the spinach leaves. no steps change- just process spinach with basil leaves)

2. Cheesy Pesto : Basil & Parmesean
Yes, I love cheese in my pesto. In the basic recipe there isn't cheese, because sometimes when you mix the pesto in with pasta it becomes gluey and hard to stir/serve. Thus, I normally just top my pasta with cheese after the fact. If you happen to be making this pesto for a crostini topping (or are just hell bent on lots of cheese in your life), then this recipe is for you.
What you'll need:
Either 5 cups basil or the spinach & basil ratio listed above  //  4 cloves garlic  //  1/4 teaspoon salt  // 1/4 teaspoon black pepper  // 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil  // 1/4 cup grated parmesean cheese
(I cut down on the salt since the cheese is plenty salty, same with the oil. For this recipe, after processing the garlic, throw the cheese in to process. This will chop up the cheese even better!)

3. Nutty Pesto
I don't really like pine nuts, but if that's your jam- go crazy folks. I prefer almonds in my pesto- but that's just me! If you choose to add nuts, more power to you. All you need to do is add 1 ounce of your favorite nuts to the food processor before your garlic to get them chopped up fairly fine. Easy, right?

So there you have it.
A post entirely dedicated to delicious pesto. 

Any questions? Or pesto recipe recommendations?
Do share. Email me :


Monday, August 13, 2012

Getting used to M-F

I've never had a job with a traditional work schedule. Ever. I've also never had weekends off before. Between jobs being a server/teller/bartender/sale coordinator/crisis line operator/barista/etcetcetc I worked all hours of the day and night, including weekends. Now that I only work M-F at my new job I totally get why people appreciate Saturday and Sunday so much. 

This weekend was a gem, and I got to see a ridiculous amount of old friends. Don't get me wrong, new friends are amazing- but there's something so cozy and familiar about friends you've known for years and years. 
work week wear 1:white pants, canvas green cashmere sweater // 2. red pants, slouchy black top // 3. coral crops, white poplin.
weekend life: 4: beer at the terrace // 5. classic chairs  // 6. sunset over lake mendota
My old coworker got married Sunday night and had the most perfect wedding known to man. I couldn't even take pictures because they wouldn't do it justice- but it would put everything you've ever seen on Pinterest to shame. PLUS the maid of honor DID A RAP instead of a speech. Epic. 
Location: Wisconsin farmland, on a friend's land. Rolling green for miles, gorgeous home and old old barn & buildings on site. Flowers everywhere. Lightning bugs. 
Decor: Mason jars with tealights hanging from trees. Old pieces of driftwood as candle holders. Stacked cigar boxes full of recipes for take home presents for the guests. An old typewriter for guests to type well wishes on. 
Food: They're both chefs, so every bite of everything was heavenly. Pig roast, corn, spicy bok choy, potatoes,fine cheese and wine (just to name some of it). 
This post is all over the place. Sorry people. I'm in a post-wedding-attending haze currently. It's just so refreshing a world of 52 hour marriages to see two friends who truly love and respect each other get married in such a manner that perfectly reflects their personalities. Full heart here, people. 

On a less sappy note, tomorrow I'm sharing 4 recipes in one post.
Boo-ya. Make sure to tune in. 

How was your weekend?
Yes, I  actually do want to hear! You listened to me babble, now it's your turn.

xo, lp

Friday, August 10, 2012

Friday's Fancies #32: Gingham Gorgeous

I love me some gingham. Mmm-hmmm. I can't decide if it makes me feel preppy or country...either way, I dig it. 
Proof is on the left of this picture:
find me on instagram here
My favorite is my far the pale orchid gingham I have, so today's FF has been created around that lovely color:

Orchid Perfect Gingham: J.Crew 
White Chino Shorts (on sale!): Old Navy 
Aqua Belt (under $10): ASOS
Tortoise sunglasses (under $15): ASOS
Circle Earrings: Marc by Marc Jacobs

How do you wear your gingham?
enlighten me, people.

xo, lp

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