Sunday, December 16, 2018

Photo Diary 005 | A Theme Park Holiday

Sometime last week, while mindlessly scrolling through Facebook- I stumbled across an article claiming that Florida had the worst Christmas spirit in the country. "Ha, no wonder", I scoffed with a sneer"it's too hot and muggy to truly feel like Christmas here". After embracing the Grinch mindset that had flowed into me through osmosis of the 100% humidity surrounding me- I had a change of heart. With two Florida Holiday Seasons under my belt, I vowed to single-handily restore the holly-jolly to this state if I had to.  My first step, remind myself of all of the wonderful things that make up a Theme Park Holiday.

Monday, December 3, 2018

CauseBox | Fall Welcome Review

I have done my very best to avoid the trend & resist the pull of the subscription box. In most cases, this has been fairly easy- they are either too specific and repetitive (where I feel like I won't use everything) or too vague to catch my interest. This was until I saw an ad for CauseBox.  Offering what looks to be a carefully-curated variety of sustainable and ethical (and beautiful) products-- I had finally met the one subscription box that my shopping-heart couldn't resist.

Friday, November 23, 2018

Photo Diary 004 | Fall Dapper Day

It's becoming easier to gauge how fast time passes by the seemingly short distance between Spring and Fall Dapper Days. While my outfit for Spring Dapper Day was 1960s inspired, I wanted to go with a late 40s theme for Fall. After planning, shopping for, and showing up in the completed look -- it was pointed out to me that I accidentally, or subconsciously channeled the amazing Peggy Carter.

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Outfit 008

I love weddings. Actually I just love love-- and what is a more love-centric event than a wedding? I'm now the age that weddings (and babies) are becoming much more frequent - I'm lying to myself like this is new, it's been this way for about 5 years.... anywho! It's been a wedding-dense few months. My sister was married in August & I am so happy to have been a part of her day. However, for this wedding I was a guest. It was fantastic. On top of it all- I got to wear this amazing suede, fringe, burgundy dress, which I found on thredUP.

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Very Good Vegetarian | Favorite Foods 001

I have been a vegetarian for almost a decade now, and while I'm not the most vocal about it- I still consider it one of the guiding principles of my day-to-day life. It shapes decisions I make as a consumer, and most of those decisions have to do with one of my favorite things: food. I wanted to start a new series of posts Very Good Vegetarian, to showcase the best meat-free meals I had each month. Okay, I'll stop with the alliteration (I'm sorry) and get on to the good stuff...

Monday, October 1, 2018

Finding Motivation

I am very much an intrinsically motivated person. If I don't feel entirely dedicated to something- it is incredibly difficult for me to achieve a goal (aka things will begin to feel like a chore). My personal form of motivation manifests through inspiration. This inspiration could be based on excitement, passion, connection. In some way I need to tie myself & my core beliefs to a mission.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Recently Read: Milk and Honey

Previous to this past weekend, I was not one of the 3 million people who had purchased Rupi Kaur's Milk and Honey. I had read individual poems from the collection- but somehow delayed purchasing and reading through from start to finish. This all changed when, on my perfect version of a Friday night, I watched Emma Watson in Conversation with Rupi Kaur- an interview for Our Shared Shelf.

I felt so inspired and so empowered after hearing Kaur talk (it's a great interview by the way- Watson is a very skilled & graceful interviewer) that I knew I had to read more, I needed to hear more of her voice. I ordered via Prime that night.

Monday, September 10, 2018

Outfit 007

Occasionally, I will dabble in wearing a color. Still- the okay-color-wheel is limited- and notice I said "a color", nothing plural here. Red happens to be one of my approved colors. Maybe it's the fact that it is such a power color and I just can't deny myself the feeling. I also think that I may mentally justify by keeping the rest of a color-feature outfit fairly basic and neutral: see above. This kind of outfit is an introvert's power move.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

You don't have to be an artist | tips for creativity

In my never-ending effort to find new creative outlets for anxiety and stress- I invested in a drawing tablet. I am by no means a talented artist (that goes to my sister)- but that doesn't mean I'm not artistic. There is always some idea or image floating around in my imagination- and for the longest time the frustration & fear of failure has stopped me from getting them out.

But when I am being creative: playing music, drawing, crocheting; I feel the best. That's why it is so important that we abolish the idea that in order to be creative it is required of you to devote your life to art. Artists are that: those who completely commit their time to art (and work hard). The rest of us can happily just have a portion of artistic life- but please do not neglect that portion.

Will my work ever be appreciated by anyone else, likely not. But that isn't the important part. What's important is that I enjoy the process. Following are a few tips that I have found are helping me hone the creativity in my life. 

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Outfit 006

Hello and welcome to another installment of 'Amanda Wears Stripes and Denim'. It really feels like I have defined and refined my personal style in the past year. So many times in the past I would find myself trying (and faltering) to wear something that was trendy at the time. The importance of developing personal style over changing in order to fit a trend has only recently dawned on me. I am now happy to acquiesce into my classic, neutral, but not-necessarily boring - wardrobe.

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Outfit 005

The Fourth of July has never been a major holiday for me. Back home it would usually consist of a backyard barbecue and handful of tiny fireworks lit in the street (my favorite being the climbing panda- it's a yearly must).  That being said- and I think I've mentioned this before- I will never skip an opportunity for themed dressing.

Friday, June 15, 2018

Outfit 004

If you're looking at these photos and thinking, "wow for someone in a gator-infested swampland you sure are pretty close to the water", then you and I are on the same page. This outfit combines many of my favorite things: hats, turtlenecks, denim, and a barely-there element of risk (aka I was looking over my shoulder between every shot checking to make sure a giant reptile wasn't stealing the limelight).

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Clean Beauty

Along with my head-first dive into yoga - which has been one of the best habits I've formed this year -I've recently decided to make the switch to clean beauty products. It is incredible the oversight the cosmetics and beauty industry is given in terms of toxins, skin irritants, and hormone disrupters. The skin is one of our largest organs- and we need to treat it with the respect it deserves.

A little background on my hair & skin: I have combination, acne-prone skin and suffer from occasional eczema flare-ups. My hair is thick with natural texture- and requires moisture (I aim for every-other-day washes). I am a creature of habit with a daily skin-care regimen and don't mind taking some time for self-care. With all of that in mind, keep reading to see what my first haul of natural beauty products included.

Friday, May 4, 2018

Spring Dapper Day

Since moving to Florida and therefore only being minutes away from Disney World, there is no viable excuse for missing Dapper Day. I will take any reason to dress-up, and I will revel in it. That being said- my outfit for this year’s Spring Dapper Day was slightly last minute. Despite having to scramble & shop my closet- I was pretty pleased with this 60s inspired, mod (and dapper) outfit.

Monday, April 30, 2018

Outfit 003

The reason I was in Rhode Island in the first place was to attend a gala honoring my late great-uncle. In addition to being a top-notch-business man and a wonderful person, my great-uncle epitomized the importance of occasional fanciness. So, when I heard gala- the first thing I thought was: what will I wear? Not in a panicked way, but I felt that what I wore this day held more importance than just a regular outfit. Immediately I had a few ideas in my head: black and white (of course) and jumpsuit.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Photo Diary 003 | Providence, RI

As mentioned in my previous Photo Diary, I recently voyaged to Rhode Island for the first time. My first impression... Rhode Island is a beautiful, charming, and cold place. As a reluctant Floridian, I have to admit that anything below 40 degrees now feels like the tundra. Despite my whining- I got to wear winter clothes that have been so sadly neglected- and enjoy exploring a new state.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Photo Diary 002 | Boston

Early this month I traveled to Rhode Island for a family gathering-- with one day dedicated to a mandatory day-trip to Boston.  My favorite east coast city, Boston is home to the Museum of Fine Arts, the Boston Common, and the Boston Public Garden

For the day, I decided to wear what I jokingly dubbed my "museum outfit"- a moniker that unfortunately stuck with my family. The black-turtleneck-with-hair-tied-back look has also been called the "Steve Jobs" by my sister. Maybe he's actually my style icon...

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Outfit 002

There are some moments that make Florida seem not-so-awful. One of those moments happened over a sunny weekend in South Florida. A spontaneous, quick trip to Hallandale Beach surprised us with the most beautiful teal water- and a great opportunity to create some outfits that really showcased the star of this show- sunglasses.

I love sunglasses. The larger and more outlandish the better. I like to think that they are my one loud style statement. Overall I'd consider my wardrobe fairly classic and minimal (let's be honest it's 90% black, white, and denim) but sunglasses... they are a flashy exception to that rule.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Finding Light

Fulfillment of Emptiness II- Jang Jin-ik

Walking into the warehouse-turned-yoga-studio, I felt my whole body exhale. I unrolled my mat, sat on the concrete floor and looked up. The ceiling was draped in those exposed lightbulbs -- the ones that you expect to find in an expensive boutique, or downtown Portland coffeehouse/bar/art gallery. It was a soft, glowing light. Not too harsh, but still warm, and still illuminating the room.

After a two year hiatus from practicing yoga regularly, I made myself a promise that I would start again. The hardest part of creating a routine is starting- pushing yourself to commit to taking some time for you. I am so glad I did.

I had found the most wonderful, cozy, peaceful studio- and from the second I walked into the room- with its hipster string lights- I thanked myself. 

Friday, March 16, 2018

Outfit 001

I love buying things. I hate spending money. Occasionally I appease this monster through impulsive cheap purchases. A cat pen whose tail is the clicker, an action figure to be tucked in a faraway corner, a small succulent. In this particular case, I entered Target in one of these moods. Read: MISTAKE. However, what could have been a tragedy for my wallet turned out quite well...this time. The pictured shirt, earrings, and jeans were all purchased on a single clearance binge- and each piece was under ten dollars. What's more- they are in neutral colors and are fairly versatile. I left victorious & with my credit card relatively unscathed.

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Photo Diary 001 | Harry Potter Celebration

As a self-proclaimed muggle-born who never got her Hogwarts letter (now I know I was also scorned by Ilvermorny- not sure what exactly I did wrong here), one of the greatest perks of being a Universal Orlando pass-holder is admission to A Celebration of Harry Potter.  This year's event took place January 26-28, and I'm lucky (magical) enough that it was my second time attending. From the teams that brought the stories to the screen, to examples of the magic that art plays in storytelling, some of the most spell-binding moments are captured below 

P.S. -- Scroll to see The Dog Who Lived - definitely my highlight of the day)

Sunday, February 18, 2018


I've been thinking a lot lately about renaissance. My life over the past few months has been an almost continuous string of "what the (insert favorite four-letter-word here) is happening with my life" moments -- and I'm finally reaching a point where it's all settling down.

This has given me the opportunity to be introspective- which means it's time to spiral out of control creatively. It seems I always have to be in some state of chaos.

So much of the past year has been me adjusting to a whole new framework: geographic, work, personal -- and it has forced me to refine who I am. I'm not a different person, but I think being thrown out to the unknown forced me to become more confident in who I am.  

The definition of a Renaissance is "the cultural rebirth that occurred in Europe from roughly the fourteenth through the middle of the seventeenth centuries, based on the rediscovery of the literature of Greece and Rome. ... Renaissance means 'rebirth' or 'reawakening'