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Essie’s Sweet Summer 2017 Collection

26 May 2017

Hey guys! One of my favorite people,  Julia from Fashion Pulse Daily is taking over today and sharing Essie's Sweet Summer 2017 Collection. Read on and show my fellow redhead and Astorian some love. 
Parlez-vous français? No? Well don’t feel badly about it because this is about the extent of my French expertise, but all that matters here is the universal language of…dessert! Inspired by the perfectly arranged, delectable, sweet morsels found in patisseries and among Paris’ iconic sidewalk-lined cafes, essie’s summer 2017 collection incorporates jovial pastels and darling metallics inspired by the city of lights, sure to have you dreaming of all things Parisian, ultra-sugary, and perfectly manicured nails. Per usual, the tongue-in-cheek names of each of the six colors in the lineup riff on the French motif with food at its core; shades include éclair my love (red candy), fondant of you (sparkling apricot), baguette me not (lilac), blue-la-la (pastel blue), s’il vous play (lavender pink metallic), and sweet soufflé (iridescent white). There’s always a favorite of the collection, which is usually predictable as I tend to basically just rotate the same 5-6 shades around, in ever so slightly varied hues, but this time it was different – s’il vous play stole my heart! Perhaps it’s the smoothness in which it spreads on the nails, or the way in which it catches the light and gleams, but there’s just something about this girly yet edgy pale pink metallic foil shade that declares it a smash hit, and may I go as far as to say THE color of summer of 2017?  Grab this one, or for that matter, all six shades, here. (essie.com)

10 Easy Recipes To Try For Memorial Day

25 May 2017

It's hard to believe that this extended weekend is Memorial Day! First of all, where did the month go? I mean, I know I was waiting around for the majority of it for a baby to arrive, but still. Anyways, in hopes of sunshine and warm weather I'm rounding up my favorite recipes with Memorial Day in mind. Whether you're BBQ'ing outdoors or hosting a festive brunch these recipes are easily whipped up with little to no effort and will win over your guests. Save the recipes now, thank me later. Now all you have to worry about is what to wear...

Mini Apple Pies (or even easier, my Apple Pie Bites)

Espadrilles under $100

24 May 2017

Oh hey Summer, is that you? A new season always calls for new footwear and this season's shoe of choice is most definitely the espadrille. Spotted on bloggers, celebs and everyone in between. Espadrilles are not only easily worn with everything but they're ridiculously comfortable to sport as well. Yep they're built for all day wear whether you're sightseeing, browsing the farmer's market or even heading into work, these raffia detailed styles are bound to make your heart skip a beat without making enemies with your feet. 

I personally favor them in neutral hues for maximum pairings but I can't help but love the styles with subtle pops of colors or prints...

Naturally, I had to do a little research (i.e. buy a few pairs for myself). I was able to narrow it down these picks that are all under $100! Most of which, run in the $50 range with the exception of the Target pair that is a whopping $30. Yeah, I had to buy them in black and cognac, because I'm practical. Check out my list and decide which is your favorite. 

Nine West Doitright Wedge Sandal, $59.99 + Extra 30% Off

Vince Camuto Leddy Wedge (more colors), $59.37
Kate Spade Idalah Bow Slide (more colors) , $98

Pink and Blue Floral Off The Shoulder Maxi Dress

23 May 2017

I can't believe it, this is officially my LAST baby bump outfit. I'm actually really sad to see my bump go. But, now I have the cutest little bundle of cuddles to soften the blow of outfits sans a giant belly. Truth be told, he might even have to come do some coordinating outfit posts with me, just because. Until then, I give you my last baby bump outfit. I mean, this dress is going to be just as good in the coming weeks and months but there's just something about these romantic Donna Morgan dresses with a 'little bump' that makes them even better. Stay tuned, I have another one coming your way - and it's GORGEOUS. 

Dress Donna Morgan (similar), Shoes Lulus.com, Bag TJMAXX

5 Maternity Staples That Still Work Postpartum

22 May 2017

After 8ish months of rocking a bump and acquiring a decent amount of clothing for said bump it seems a little ridiculous to toss out the last several months of styles in favor of something less maternity looking. I mean, I get it. After what seems like endless hours of trying to shimmy into maternity pants I can't say I want to hold onto them for much longer. But, the reality of ease and hanging onto some of your favorites from pregnancy is actually a smart choice, at least until you're REALLY ready to say goodbye once you get your pre-baby bod back. So, I'm rounding up 5 super easy maternity staples that will look just as good postpartum and that will make nursing a breeze...

- The Wrap Dress - 
Easy nursing access and an adjustable waistline.

- Off The Shoulder Dresses and Tops
Perfect for nursing and still a #1 staple for summer.

- Maternity Jeans-
Sure, we want to fit into our pre-pregnancy jeans the moment we walk out of the hospital but real talk, don't ditch the insanely comfortable waistband that maternity jeans offer just yet. They're still pretty useful and chances are no-one will know you're still sporting maternity jeans.

- Ruched Bodycon Little Black Dresses - 
Bump or not, your closet needs the ultra flattering ruched sided body con little black dress. It's flattering on all shapes and sizes and the ruching can be adjusted to hide or hug your curves.
(This Ingrid and Isabel Dress is Amazing)

-Flowing Tops- 
Perfect for quick, on-the-go outfits with just the right amount of access for an impromptu nursing session.

3 Easy Ways To Add Color To Your Home

18 May 2017

Now that you've taken care of your spring wardrobe and added a little color, it's time to start thinking about the other places in your life that need some extra pop. For me, while most of my color comes from printed dresses and bright backgrounds, a good amount also comes from our home. By now, you know that I love color at home.  From waking up in the morning to our rich violet ceiling, to working at my desk in our perky berry office/living room, my space supports my mood and my well-being.
Color is a super valuable tool that anyone can use, though most people aren't sure where to start or how.  Especially when it comes to home decor. And more often than not, a person might end up feeling it's something they should just avoid, or  use conservatively. Are you on the fence about color? Don't worry, I have your back!  I'm sharing 3 super-simple ways to add color to your home this spring with the help of Annie Selke's new Palm Springs collection.
I have to start by saying that this catalog is beaming with color and it was nearly impossible to play favorites and narrow it down to three essentials. But, I did and I couldn't be more happy with my picks. They're perfect!
Ok, so let's talk essentials on making your room pop with minimal effort- because that's what we want: zero effort and a subtle, yet palpable change to the scenery. Right?

First, throw pillows. They instantly freshen up any room. Living room, entryway, bedroom - you name it. You only need one or two for the job and they're easily switched out with the changing seasons or your mood. For me, I instantly fell in love with the Thumbprint French Blue/Indigo Embroidered Decorative Pillows. They have just enough color and print but in a subtle, practical way. Plus, they fit perfectly with the color scheme in the living room. Even David loves them, and that opinion doesn't come very often.
Next, sheets! Sheets are perfect for the commitment-phobe. You can have a range of color and print to plain and throw them on when you're in the mood for color or store them away when you're not. You're constantly changing your sheets anyhow, so these are the easiest way to bring in that desired pop without having to commit to seeing it every single day. Like I mentioned, they come in an almost infinite assortment of colors and prints so finding something that fits your preferences is super easy to arrange. I personally wanted something a little lighthearted for our room so the Confetti French Blue and Indigo Sheet Set was the perfect fit for the job (Bonus: I can add my throw pillows to the mix when I'm feeling like they need a new home!). Imagine waking up to all that confetti  goodness? It's basically a party for your bed.  
Finally, rugs! It's taken some time but I have grown to really love rugs and runners. At first I was reluctant to cover up our hardwood floors but after finding the right ones for each room I actually couldn't imagine our space without them. Rugs are simple, you can go big or you can go small, it's all about preference. And like bedsheets, you can go for lightweight washables and change them out according to the mood or season. Afraid to commit to a full area rug?  Opt for a bright and cheery doormat or throw rug for your entryway It's a fun way to add a little play to your daily walking space. For me,  If there's one room in our apartment that desperately needed a rug, it 100% had to be our kitchen. I can't say I love the tile flooring and it needed... something. So this Diamond Canary & White Runner was the perfect addition. It plays well with the backsplash, adds some texture, and the yellow cheerfully brightens the room (especially next to the stools).
Hopefully these tips helped give you that little nudge and a toehold you needed when it comes to adding a little color to your space. You can do it! Especially with the help of Annie Selke's new Palm Spring collection. Which you can check out and shop, here.

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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Annie Selke . The opinions and text are all mine.