Moto Jackets

    | 3 comments
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moto jacket: H&M $18 SALE //t-shirt: Crazy Shirts //necklace: Nordstrom B.P. //skirt: Brandy Melville //tights: Target //Ring: Moorea Seal

I usually don't like to spend money on myself this time of year, but made an exception for this moto jacket. I've had my eye on it for months, and when I saw that had been marked down from its original price of $50, to $18, I didn't even think twice to snag it.

My plan is to style it with darker pieces, like the skirt you see here, and my favorite pair of black combat boots.

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Let's Get Technical // 1 --Free iPhone Wallpaper Download!

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I've always loved the look of handwritten text on photos, but never felt serious enough to invest in a tablet. At one point, the cheapskate in me even resulted to using a stylus on a trackpad, which, now, I realize was a really bad idea for two reasons: it looked terrible, and it took forever.

Interning at Blogshop was definitely the breaking point in my unwillingness to invest. For two days, I heard nothing but good things about writing tablets from Bri, Angela, and the women in the class.

I told G and his older sister, E, (who is an animation artist) about my dilemma. Out of pure luck, E ended up having an extra tablet, which she sold to me for less than half the price of the cheapest one I found. Turns out, she designed the packaging for one of the companies that sells them, and they gave her one as a thank-you gift. How cool is that?!

Since then, I've been obsessed with practicing... and out of my obsession, came a new column for this blog, 'Let's Get Technical'. From now on, I'll be making and posting computer and phone backgrounds every Monday!

Click here to download this week's wallpaper! The quote is from one of my favorite authors, Roald Dahl.

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Feline Friday // 1

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Guys... I'm starting a new column about one of my favorite topics: cats! Today's post (week 1) will highlight a few of my favorite cat things. I don't necessarily own everything on this list, but I've definitely been eyeing a lot of them, especially those cat eye sunglasses. I wish they came in black!

The photo above is of my cat brother, Oliver. Isn't he sweet?

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1. Guys Can Be Cat Ladies Too via Amazon -- Got this book for G for his birthday. He loved it!
2. 'Little Cats Midi Ring' via Urban Outfitters
3. Seychelle's 'Tell Me More' Flat -- Check out my DIY post on how to make these here!
4. Fe NY 'Cat's Eye Sunglasses' via Nordstrom
5. 'Delicate Open Ring' via Urban Outfitters

Brandy Melville Jewelry-- Is it Worth Purchasing?

    | 1 comment
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Ah, Brandy Melville. Having only been to this store twice, I've already developed a love-hate relationship with them. I first found out about this store through Instagram and paid their Honolulu location a visit while on vacation there this past summer. My first impression of the store was positive. They had laid-back, rustic aesthetic, and friendly staff to go with it.

I think my problem was that I got too excited, too fast. Everything was extremely cheap (who could pass up $3-$5 for a dainty gold ring?!), and the cute designs didn't help. I ended up purchasing a flowy, navy tank, a necklace, and way too many rings. My total came out to be just under $20. Not bad at all.

When I got back from vacation, I started wearing the rings right away, and also gave two to my friends, K1 and K2. After a about a month and a half of daily wear, the rings began to turn a copper shade, and some even began to rust.

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A wise person once said, "You get what you pay for." Well, that was definitely true for these rings. As for the necklace, it's still OK. I'm thinking the main issue may be water exposure... but who has time to take off all their rings, every time they wash their hands? Not me.

Just so that I have it written out, and just so that it's clear: No, I would not recommend purchasing rings at Brandy Melville.

Keep your eyes peeled for a Brandy Melville clothing review!

Clean, Striped Nail Tutorial

    | 1 comment
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Lately, I've been a sucker for minimalist nail art. The look of it is clean, simple, and there's a "no fuss" vibe to it. Today, I'm going to show you how to re-create the clean, striped design you see above. Read on for the steps!

TOOLS: painter's tape (one of my favorite nail art tools), nail polish colors in white and navy, and a top coat.

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STEPS:
1. Begin with clean, unpainted nails.

2a. For each nail you wish to paint, cut two pieces of tape. TIP: to save on supplies, since painter's tape is a little thicker, you can cut the tape again, in half, vertically. To ensure your lines are straight, always use the edge of the tape you did not cut for the edge of your stripe.

2b. Apply the tape to the nail you wish to paint. I like to use the half-moon part of my nail as a guide when it comes to making the sides even. Press down extra hard on the edges of the tape to prevent any polish from seeping through.

3. Paint your nails either navy or white. If your nail polish is thick enough (especially the lighter color), it doesn't matter which you do first.

4. Paint horizontal stripes in the alternate color on your nail. If you make the stripes in this color too thick, you can always go back, and re-touch with the first color.

5. Let dry, and peel off the tape SLOWLY. You may see some nail polish has leaked through. If this is the case, you can clean if off with a Q-Tip, nail polish remover, and a steady hand.

6. Apply a layer of top coat. WARNING: always be careful when applying top coat, because it can smear your design.

View my evil eye nail minimalist nail tutorial here.

eye ring via my Blogshop friend Moorea Seal //simple ring via Brandy Melville

5 Unique Hairstyles for Second Day Hair

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After meeting so many stylish women at Blogshop, I decided that was time to add to my second day hairstyle repertoire. Here are five I'm hoping to try in the future:

1. Floral Accents
2. Knotted Ponytail
3. Braided Crown (my favorite!)
4. Braided Headband
5. Tucked Bun

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images via 1/2/3/4/5, edited by SWEATshirt DRESSshirt

DIY: Gold-Dipped Seashells

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card: Confetti Splendor on ETSY //candle: Small Gunns //tea towel: Little Korboose

Something I look forward to each year is visiting Laguna with G and his family. We usually take 3-4 days in September to spend time with his grandparents, and relax. The house we stay at is right on the beach, so naturally, we spend a majority of the trip playing in the ocean, and soaking up the sun. 

This year, G and I decided to do some seashell hunting. We were lucky to find two giant ones: an albacore, and a spiral-looking one, in addition to a few smaller ones, but unfortunately, a lot of the smaller ones lost their shine after being rinsed off.

With the free time I had today, I decided to spruce them up with some gold paint and a color-blocking technique I've been seeing all over Pinterest. Read on to learn more about the technique, and how it can be applied to almost any object.

shell
TOOLS: shells (in my case), painter's tape, gold paint (I used multi-surface metallic paint by Martha Stewart Crafts), and a paintbrush.
STEPS:
1. Tape the part of your shells you don't want the paint to be on. Important: be sure the tape is tightly sealed, all the way around your object.
2. Apply 2-3 coats of gold paint.
3. Let dry.
4. Peel the tape off very slowly to reveal your gold-dipped treasure!

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Typically, it's easier to do the color-blocking technique on objects with fewer nooks and crannies, but with a little patience, anything can be "dipped in gold." Other objects this technique can be useful for:
-- Large beads
-- Wooden utensils
-- Paint/makeup brush ends

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Weekender

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weekend

This weekend, I'll be hanging out with G, and doing some holiday gift research. It's a little early for Christmas stuff, I know, but this year, my mission is to DIY as many gifts as possible. More on that later!

Have a great weekend!

To Be An Intern (for Blogshop!)

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On Tuesday and Wednesday, I had the opportunity to be an intern for Blogshop, a 2-day intensive Photoshop workshop for bloggers and business owners put on by the very talented photographer, Angela Kohler, and my design idol, Bri Emery. I was ecstatic to meet both women, and even though I did a really good job at hiding it, I was beyond starstruck. Bri especially, has inspired me to the moon and back, and has been a huge influence in my desire to become a graphic designer.

In the two days, even though I didn't learn a lot of new information about Photoshop, I learned quite a bit about event planning, turning your blog into a brand, and why you shouldn't feel shame in being obsessed with Instagram (haha). I also met a lot of talented people, and made two new friends. Shout out to my fellow interns Leah and Moorea!

It's almost unreal how insanely successful Blogshop has become. Having only celebrated its 2nd birthday, it has already gone international with over 90 classes under its belt. I am so thankful to have been a part of the Seattle experience.

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lovely flowers arranged by Jen Elliot

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Aron Goyoaga wins the award for having the prettiest studio

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goodies by BKR (bottle) //small gunns (candle) //moorea seal (ring) //herbivore botanicals (pink clay) //swim club (bath salts) //lhc calligraphy (greeting cards) //little korboose (tea towel)
all photos by SWEATshirt DRESSshirt

Witch Fashion: Zoe Benson

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A TV show I've been really into lately is American Horror Story: Coven. The storyline (although sick at times) is incredibly addicting, and the characters never disappoint when it comes to being fashionable. Zoe, my favorite character, was the primary inspiration for the items in this post.

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1. H&M Wool Hat // 2. Topshop Hinge Clutch Bag //3. Vince Camuto 'Bullet Proof' Ring //4. F21 Heirloom Faux Gemstone Necklace //5. Loeffler Randall Fenton Bootie //6. H&M Biker Jacket

Birthday Lunches and Seattle

    | 3 comments
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For G's birthday this year, I took him to Poquitos, a Mexican restaurant in Seattle. It was pouring down rain, so as soon as we found parking (the biggest challenge of that day), we were eager to get inside.

G ordered a torta, and I had the fish tacos. The torta came out cut in half, with each portion face-down in a thin layer of soup, and the fish tacos, you'll see a picture of below. The fish tacos were amazing, with pickled cabbage, salsa, just the right amount of cilantro, and a splash of lime juice. I'm a huge fan of bold flavors, and this dish definitely had my approval. G liked his torta as well, and after having a bite of it, I would say that it was just as good as my order.

The restaurant's website claims for their food to be "authentic Mexican", and even though I'm no expert, I'd say they did a pretty darn good job.

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Batiste Dry Shampoo Review

    | 3 comments
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After having a conversation with a professional hairstylist about the damaging effects of washing your hair every day, I decided it was time to invest in a bottle of dry shampoo.

What and Why
Dry shampoo is a powder used to soak up excess oil and achieve more volume.

The Brand
After a little bit of research, I found a popular brand to be Batiste. It had high ratings and was named a drugstore dry shampoo on multiple websites. I found mine at Ulta for $7.99. Be sure to look for their $3 off of $10 if you decide to buy it there.

Pros and Cons
Pros: The product does what it claims. It soaks up grease, smells good, and it's super easy to spray.
Cons: I made the mistake of using way too much the first time, and my head got really itchy. Also, powder comes out white. So if you've got dark hair like me, be sure to rub it in a little more than necessary.
batiste
An Extra Note
The thing with dry shampoo is that it's only there to make your hair appear less greasy. For me, my hair still felt kind of gross (I've used Batiste on 2nd, as well as 3rd day hair), but it looked completely fine. I would totally buy this product again, though, because it does its job.

Rating
4/5 stars... I love everything about this product, but wish the powder came out more translucent.

photo 1 by SWEATshirt DRESSshirt, photo 2 via here

Evil Eye Nail Tutorial

    | 5 comments
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I'm a huge fan of unique manicures. When I saw this "10 eyes manicure" on the Instagram of one of my favorite bloggers, Bri Emery, a few weeks ago, I knew I had to find a way to replicate the look at home. Read below to see what I came up with!

WHAT YOU WILL NEED: white, sky blue, and black nail polishes, a top coat, a bobby pin, french tip stickers or blue painter's tape and scissors, and a piece of scratch paper.

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Fall Photoshoot

    | 3 comments
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chambray shirt: Urban outfitters //white t-shirt: Eddie Bauer //jeggings: TJ Maxx //nail polish: 'And a Cherry on Top' SEPHORA by OPI

To carry on with the tradition of having a photo shoot every season, my friends K1, K2, and I headed north of Seattle a few weeks ago, where fall had completely taken over. We ended up on a long road with a row of trees on each side. Most of the leaves had changed colors, and there were plenty on the ground for endless authentic shots. The air was crisp, but not too cold. The day couldn't have been more perfect.

In addition to the photo shoot, my friends and I had planned to have a Girls Weekend. We always joke about having "drunken nights at Rock 'n Sushi" (gold star to those that can tell me the movie that quote is from), even though none of us drink. We ended up actually going to sushi, and afterwards, rented Warm Bodies, which we figured out, wasn't our favorite movie. A part of me wishes there could be more weekends like this. But then I realized, if that were the case, I probably wouldn't be able to appreciate them as much as I do.

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boots left: Frye //boots right: TJ Maxx

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photo credit goes to K1 and K2.

How to Nail Your First (or even second!) Interview

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If any of you have ever been to an interview, you will know the stress that comes in the days or hours leading up to the big moment. A few weeks ago, one of my former classmates, who is also a friend, helped me connect with the supervisor at the agency she works at. I submitted my resume and cover letter earlier that week, but for some reason, my resume never went through. Regardless, I landed an interview because of my connection.

As excited as I was, I felt a lot of pressure to succeed. I knew I had one shot, and that if I were to bomb the interview, I would not only embarrass my friend, but the school in which I graduated from... oh, and most importantly, myself.