ootd_striped_crop_topGrowing up during the Britney Spears era meant lots of crop tops for me. Since living in Phoenix basically means trying to wear as few clothes as possible for nine months out of the year, I was all about it. I have to say I don’t really miss the “midriff baring top and super low rise jeans” look but I still love a good crop top, only now I prefer to pair them with high-waisted skirts that allow just a sliver of skin to be seen.

ootd_striped_crop_top1This graphic black and white stripe crop top was just begging to be paired with a full black skirt. I wore this on a night out with lots of sparkly accessories and bright lips and nails. What a perfect excuse to pull out my beaded clutch and satin shoes! I love how versatile this trend is and how easy it is to dress it up or down. And the price of this striped top can’t be beat!

ootd_striped_crop_top3Black and white is such a classic pairing and I love how easy it would be to pair this top with a red skirt for a bolder look or with bright shoes for a fun twist. This crop top has a zipper that runs down the back for a slightly edgier feel and I love how the striped fabric looks with a statement necklace.


ootd_striped_crop_top5Lots of accessories and bright nails make a fun statement!

ootd_striped_crop_top4Top: Forever 21 Striped Zipper-Back Crop Top (runs just slightly small) // Skirt: Forever 21 Midi Scuba Skirt, sold out, similar here, here, and here // Sunglasses: Target // Clutch: vintage, similar here // Shoes: Nina, old, similar here and here // Earrings: old // Necklace: Simply Vera Vera Wang, old, similar here and here // Bracelets: misc and vintage // Rings: Consider the Wldflwrs, Christina Kober, Mama Maroon, Colby June, Tiffany // Lipstick: MAC Viva Glam Miley Cyrus // Nail Polish: Julep India


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Sephora Favorites Give Me More Lip 2015

sephora_favorites_give_me_more_lipEvery year around the holidays, Sephora releases a lip set full of minis and full-sized products. It’s part of their Sephora Favorites collection which also includes skincare, eyeliner, perfume, and hair sets. They are all a great way to try new products and discover new brands for a great package price. I’ve bought a couple of the mixed makeup and smaller sets before and I’ve always thought about getting the big lip kit. This year I finally took the plunge and purchased Sephora Favorites Give Me More Lip, which includes 15 products.

sephora_favorites_give_me_more_lip1The set comes in a pretty purple-wrapped gold box. I love the look of these sets and the metallic gold box is pretty enough to reuse as a gift box. The lip products are perfectly placed in a plastic tray that keeps them from bumping around (and the slots for each product are really secure- it’s actually a little difficult to get them out).

sephora_favorites_give_me_more_lip2This year’s set has a great variety of colors and brands. I was excited to see some higher end brands included and I love the mix of colors. I found most of them to be very wearable and I was happy to see only one brand duplicated in the set (Buxom, did Sephora really need to include two lipglosses from them?).

sephora_favorites_give_me_more_lip6For $59, I received 15 products, four of which are full-sized and eleven that are minis. The shades range from dark brown to deep berry, red to neon pink, and coral to orange. The range of colors this year was really great and there were only a couple that I didn’t like. This is a large set but I tried to do a comprehensive post and included lots of pictures and swatches of every color.

**This post is extremely pic-heavy so I put most of the photos behind a cut for those of you that are reading it from our main page.**

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September Beauty Favorites

sept_beauty_favoritesMy September beauty routine consisted of lots of natural pink colors and products to make my complexion look nice and bright. I bought a new, very colorful eye shadow palette (review coming soon), so I wanted neutral cheeks and lips to pair the bright shadows with. I’ve had two of these products for awhile and one of them is a brand new one that arrived at the perfect time. My three September Beauty Favorites were Sephora’s Colorful Blush in 08 Rose Petal, BECCA’s Under Eye Brightening Corrector, and Buxom’s Full-Bodied Lipstick in Mistress.

sephora_rose_blushI’ve obviously had Sephora’s Colorful Blush in Rose Petal for awhile. It’s one of my favorite blush colors but it’s been discontinued so I’m hesitant to use it all up. I had my makeup done at Sephora a couple of years ago and the girl used this blush and I’ve been in love ever since. It’s such a pretty medium pink shade that goes with any look. While I love my bright pink blushes, this is a much more wearable shade that I can wear on any given day. It’s not easy to go overboard with this color since it’s such a soft neutral pink. The formula is also really nice. It isn’t powdery and it lasts all day on me. I will be so sad when I finally use this all up.

becca_under_eye_brightenerBECCA’s Under Eye Brightening Corrector is a new product for me (I received it in the set I reviewed here). I had been thinking about purchasing it when Ulta released a set with a deluxe mini. I’m so happy I got this when I did and I can easily see me using it all and repurchasing the full size. This under eye brightener is super light and creamy unlike a lot of concealers that are thick and cakey. I’ve had quite a few early mornings this month and this product really brightens under my eyes and makes it look like I got more rest than I did. I like to apply it in a triangle shape under my eyes and then put my bb cream on over it. It reflects just enough light without making it seem like I’m wearing a lot of concealer.

buxom_mistressBuxom’s Full-Bodied Lipstick in Mistress is a color that I initially received in one of Sephora’s promos. I liked it so much that I used the same promo code a few times so I could stock up (see my reviews here and here). This is a great medium pink shade that adds just enough color. I consider it a replacement for a pinky-nude when I want a little more color but still want a natural look. The formula feels nice on and it lasts for several hours. Mistress pairs perfectly with smoky, colorful, or natural eye looks and it matches Rose Petal really well.

sept_beauty_favorites1My September Beauty Favorites aren’t as dramatic or exciting as some of my previous monthly favorites, but they are all products that I love and that do their job well. Sephora’s Colorful Blush in Rose Petal is the perfect everyday, I-don’t-want-to-think-about-what-blush-to-wear shade and I really like the formula. BECCA’s Under Eye Brightening Corrector does its job really well and I love how light and creamy it is. Buxom’s Full-Bodied Lipstick in Mistress is a great medium pink shade that is extremely versatile. I’ve been consistently happy with these products and I’m so glad I found them.

What were your September Beauty Favorites?



Taliesin West

taliesen_west5A few weeks ago, G and I headed over to Scottsdale to visit Taliesin West. Built in 1938, Taliesin West was Frank Lloyd Wright’s winter home and studio. Today, the property serves as the main campus for the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture and the headquarters for the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation. There are several different types of tours available for the property but we opted for the 90-minute Insights Tour, which allowed us to tour Wright’s Office, the Garden Room, the Living Quarters, the Kiva, the Sculpture Garden, the Music Pavilion, and the Cabaret Theater (basically all the main areas of the property).

taliesen_westWe went on one of the first tours of the day, the only logical solution for a 90-minute, mostly outside tour in the middle of summer in Phoenix. Umbrellas and water are provided but this is not a tour I would suggest for people not used to the heat. The majority of the tour is outside and the indoor areas are only air-conditioned to about 90 degrees. It wasn’t too bad for a native like me (although I brought my own water, wore a hat, and layered on the sunscreen) but out-of-towners would be best visiting Taliesin West during the cooler months.

taliesen_west1The tour was pretty interesting and our guide was very knowledgeable. I’d never been to any of the homes Frank Lloyd Wright designed before this so it was cool to learn about his design philosophies and see them put into practice. Taliesin West uses a lot of natural light and is designed to fit in with the desert landscape. All of the buildings’ walls were made with concrete and rocks that were found on the property, and the rocks on the outside of the walls are left uncovered on purpose to add to the desert feel.

taliesen_west3The drafting studio is still used today by students of the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture. The glass windows are a new addition to the property- originally the buildings were designed with an open-air feel and some of the roofs were even covered by canvas which allowed soft, natural light in but gave some protection from the elements.

taliesen_west8After a fire at Taliesin, Frank Lloyd Wright’s summer home in Wisconsin, he made sure to have plenty of water on hand at Taliesin West. The reflection pool serves as a source of water in an emergency but it’s also designed to fit in perfectly with the rest of the property. And it adds a place to cool off and relax during the warmer months. This outside part of the tour was probably the longest section and I was dying to climb into the reflection pool while we were standing in front of it (and I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one who wanted to take a dip).

taliesen_west9I have to admit, I’m not super into desert-style architecture, but the design of these buildings was pretty cool to look at. There were so many small touches that made it really interesting. It’s amazing all of the detail that went into Taliesin West.

taliesen_west11The Garden Room was (slightly) air-conditioned, so it was nice to stop in and sit for a few minutes. The reddish-orange color seen here on the floors and ceiling was prevalent throughout the entire property. Everything at Taliesin West was designed specifically to fit in the space and every knick-knack had its own spot.

taliesen_west12The outside of the Garden Room even had perfectly placed statues and flowers. Even the edges of the roof had special design details to make sure the shadows cast were aesthetically pleasing.

taliesen_west18Taliesin West also has two performance areas. The Music Pavilion is a sea of the signature red color. It has a transparent roof to allow for lots of natural light. This is where Wright and his students would gather for performances, put on plays, and hold parties. Another building, the Cabaret Theater, is built out of stone and offers perfect acoustics in a more intimate setting.

taliesen_west17Our visit to Taliesin West was a lot of fun (and very hot). The Insights Tour was the perfect length and we got to see so much of the property and learn about the history of the buildings. I would definitely recommend checking this out if you are in the area, and I think it will be fun to visit Frank Lloyd Wright’s other properties and see how they compare.

taliesen_west15Dress: Forever 21, old, similar here, here, and here // Hat: BP, old, similar here // Sunglasses: J. Crew Factory // Shoes: LC Lauren Conrad, old, similar here // Bag: Kate Spade Cobble Hill Little Minka, old, similar style here // Necklaces: vintage, Gorjana, old similar here // Lipstick: YSL Rouge Volutpe Shine in 13 Pink in Paris // Nail Polish: Julep India


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DIY Curtains and Bedroom Redo

curtains6aIt’s been a little while since I’ve posted about my apartment decorating, but I’ve been busy. Last time I wrote about my DIY headboard redo and this time I’m redoing my curtains. I have to be honest, I think curtains can make a big impact in how a room looks but I just don’t find them very exciting. When we moved in, we bought the cheapest blackout curtains in a non-offensive color that we could find. Now that I’m actually taking the time to redecorate, our tan curtains that are stapled to the wall don’t really fit in. Plus, for being blackout curtains, they let a lot of light in (although the sun is pretty bright here).

curtains3Since I’ve been working with a gray-and-white theme for everything else, I decided gray curtains would be perfect. I had a hard time finding any that I liked though. Most were either too brown or too purple and if I found a gray I liked, the curtains were too thin. I ended up just buying some gray suiting fabric from JoAnn and covered our existing curtains.

curtains0The process was pretty simple- I set the gray fabric on the floor and put the curtains face down on top. Then I just folded the fabric over the edges of the curtains and sewed around them (leaving an opening for the curtain rod). I even purchased a curtain rod so now we can open our curtains anytime we want to let light in! These are a major upgrade if you ask me. And the extra fabric layer really keeps the light out in the morning.

headboardBefore I started decorating, we had a mishmash of colors going on in the room. Our headboard was that weird dark greenish brown color and the curtains were tan and we couldn’t even open them! Our bedspread was gray with stripes and it wasn’t quite as oversized and cozy as I wanted it to be.

headboard12aWith our new headboard and curtains, I also decided we needed a new comforter. I ended up splurging for this Organic Cotton Pintuck Duvet Cover from West Elm and filling it with a cheaper comforter (I passed on the display pillows because those always end up living on the floor). I love how bright and airy our bedroom looks now! The grays add a softer feel and I love the texture of the duvet.

headboard13aI’m so happy with how everything turned out. The headboard was super easy to recover and I love how it looks now. The charcoal fabric really pops against the white walls and duvet.

headboard14aOur room looks so much bigger now too. It’s amazing how a couple of little improvements like organizing a dresser, changing the color of a headboard or curtains, and updating a comforter can make such a big difference in the overall feel of a room.

headboard15Plus, look how cozy that duvet looks! I was a little worried about having a white bedspread but it makes the room so bright. I just can’t eat in bed anymore.

bed1These neutrals make it so easy to play around with colorful accents, like my bright cashmere throws. I am so happy with how everything has turned out so far. It’s amazing how big of a difference all these small changes have made and it didn’t really cost all that much. Now I have to decide what I want to do next!

What are your simple decorating ideas?