Sunday, December 22, 2013

10 CHEAP OR FREE HOLIDAY ACTIVITIES

If you follow my tumblr blog,
 you may be aware that my family and I aren't formally celebrating the holidays this year. 
You can read the detailed post here.
With that in mind, I've been doing my best to enjoy the season despite my current circumstances. 
I realize that some of you may find yourself in a similar perdicament this Winter, and so I've decided to share with you some of the cost-efficient activities I've indulged in to cure my Christmas blues.
Hope that some of my suggestions will allow you to find solace this season.
Sending all of you lots of love and well wishes xo
1. Host a Hot Chocolate Party- If you're looking to host a gathering, but don't wish to spend copious amounts of money, a hot cocoa buffet is the way to go. Set out a variety of add-ons and toppings-- Whipped cream, Cool Whip, marshmallows, crushed candy cane, cinnamon, chocolate syrup, peppermint extract, chocolate shavings, edible glitter, etc. Prepare a standard hot chocolate recipe, and let your guests travel down the buffet table and customize their cocoa creation. It's a fun and playful way to join friends and family together, without the stress or expense of a fancy holiday party.

2. Make Homemade Cards- I'm always overjoyed to receive something in the mail. I find handwritten letters and homemade cards endlessly endearing. Sadly, such letters seem to be sent less and less, as we've become partial to quick texts via our cell phones. This year, take advantage of the romantic and traditional quality the holidays bare, and make some homemade cards to send out to loved ones. You can go the minimal route and simply write a handwritten letter of warmth and well wishes, or go all-out grade school with construction paper, glitter, sequins, etc.. You'll have fun getting creative and your friends and family are sure to feel the love when they receive a personal note from you.

3. A Cozy Winter Drive- Something especially charming about December is the effect it takes on both nature and neighborhoods alike. Load up your family or close friends in the car for an evening. Play a traditional holiday playlist, or create a winter soundtrack all your own, and drive through your town to admire the decorations and twinkle lights. Where I'm from, there's a long stretch of town where the neighbors go all-out for Christmas each and every year. Car after car lines up to admire the fairy lights and ornate displays. It's a fun tradition that definitely holds a lot of holiday whimsy.

4. Bake Something- Baking is an obvious holiday tradition that I think nearly everyone takes part in, one way or another. Whether you're in the kitchen baking gingerbread men or sitting by the fire downing an entire tin of your Nana's butter cookies--treats and December are synonymous with one another. This year, try your hand at baking something new! Purchase some cheap and seasonal cookie cutters, whip up a bath of royal icing with food coloring, and decorate some traditional sugar cookies to deliver as gifts. This is an especially fun activity to get little kids involved in. I like to bake the cookies myself, and then set out the decorating tools for them to use themselves. Things may get a little messy. I've had to clean up my fair share of scattered sprinkles. BUT, it's a lot of fun, and nearly anyone will appreciate a decent cookie. 

5. Go Ice Skating- I live in the Los Angeles area, and often times we're celebrating a sunny Christmas. Snow is completely unimaginable, but luckily we can falsify a traditional winter via the outdoor ice rinks that are installed during the autumn and kept throughout New Years. Now, I'm sure the majority of us aren't professional figure skaters. Most of us may spill on the ice a couple times before we can keep balanced. But ice skating can be so fun, and pretty inexpensive. Get a group of your girlfriends together and spend an afternoon on the ice. Some of you may live in a colder climate with actual snow! If so, take advantage of that and maybe build a snow man or go sledding! You're never too old to act like a kid during the holidays.

6. Holiday Movie Night- Winter is the perfect time for spending entire days in your pajamas and indulging in a traditional movie marathon. Cozy up in comfy sweats, flannel shirts, slippers and thick-knit socks. Select your favorite Christmas classics and enjoy having nothing to do. Brew some coffee, pop some popcorn, eat that entire chocolate advent calendar- the night is yours.

7. Paper Snowflakes- This is a fun craft to partake in solo, on a gloomy winter day when you're looking to reflect. There's a bunch of paper snowflake DIYs to be found online, and hanging them up with fairy lights will result in a simple and cost-efficient winter wonderland for your home or bedroom.


8. Build a Gingerbread House- A holiday classic that never gets old. Though some of us may prefer alternative structures to traditional gingerbread--assembling an edible holiday house is always fun and can easily consume an entire afternoon's worth of time. Personally, I prefer making my holiday houses out of homemade Rice Krispie treat walls. I find them much yummier than basic gingerbread. I like covering the entire structure in royal icing snow and then decorating with spice drops, candy canes, after-dinner mints, and marshmallow snowmen. Be sure to snap a few photos post-construction! The finished product gets eaten up fast.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE 2013

We're deep in the midst of holiday season and with that comes many a trip to the crowded shopping mall, wandering from store to kiosk and searching endlessly for sweet steals to gift to those you love dearly. 
In an effort to make your hunt a little easier, 
I've made a gift guide featuring 17 items, ALL awesome and ALL under $50! 
These are presents I'd love to receive, and so I've given each my stamp of approval. 
Featured below my gift guide is a list of 7 LUST WORTHY items
 ranging in price from $100 all the way up to $5,000. 
Said guide may be far out of the price bracket the majority of us can shop within, 
but they're still fun to gawk at and your Pinterest wish list can be as decadent
 as your childhood letters to Santa. 
Happy hunting, loves! xo
1. Lush Cosmetics "vanilla butterball scented bathbomb"- $4.95 (Lush)
2. Lush Cosmetics "dreamtime luxury bath melt"- $6.95 (Lush)
3. Starbucks via peppermint mocha- $6.95 (Starbucks)
4. It by Alexa Chung- $35 (Urban Outfitters)
5. Marauder's Map- $34 (thinkgeek.com)
6. Eat Pastry VEGAN cookie dough- $4.99 (check Eat Pastry's site for locations)
7. Philosophy French vanilla bean shower gel- $16.50 (Sephora)
8. MAC Cosmetics "Hautcore" lipstick- $15 (MAC Cosmetics)
9. Tarot card deck- $40 (The Wild Unkown)
10. Skull plaque- $24 (Urban Outfitters)
11. Alexander McQueen: Evolution by Katherine Gleason- $35 (Urban Outfitters)
12. Astrological jewelry stand- $20 (Urban Outfitters)
13. Camera lens mug- $14.99 SALE PRICE (thinkgeek.com)
14. Free People chocolate coins- $6.50 for a satchel (Free People)
15. Williams Sonoma peppermint bark- $29.95-$47.95 (Williams Sonoma)
16. Paddywax Apothecary candle- $24 (Urban Outfitters)
17. Butter London nail polish- $15 (Urban Outfitters)
1. 12 Days of Christmas Sweets goodie box- $100 (mouth.com)
2. Giuseppe Zanotti heels- £715 (harrods.com)
3. Chanel surfboard- $5,000 (Chanel)
4. Les Essentials Les Pinceaux brush set- $225 (Chanel)
5. Driftwood idock- $98 (Anthropologie)
6. Taylor headphones- $199 (Frends)
7. Crosley floral turntable- $160 (Urban Outfitters)

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

AUTUMN INSPIRATION 2013


I love the cooler months, and this year I’m enjoying Autumn by revisiting some old-school methods of relaxation. There’s something very romantic and wonderful about cozying up and digging into your psyche through art and nature. I’ve written up a list of suggestions for some fun Fall activities and styling suggestions. I’m so excited to share it with you, and I hope you like it!

STYLE: I tend to pull warm colors and earth tones year-round, but I seriously gravitate toward both in the fall & winter. Burgundy, charcoal, olive, and chestnut are fun hues to incorporate into your wardrobe. Mustard is my favorite color to accent with; it pops beautifully through pieces like thick-knit scarves, beanies, flannels and cardigan sweaters. Now is the time to showcase your style and wear layer upon layer, so have fun with it! Band tees, cuffed corduroys, lace-up oxford boots, & a great army jacket are a few of my all-time favorite fall staples.

MUSIC: Revisit vinyl records. Hunt down a record store (I promise, they DO still exist), and pull a couple of albums you love. If you don’t own a record player, use the records as makeshift wall art or room decor! That aside, if you’re totally committed to your mp3 player, I’ve posted an Autumn playlist for rainy days, morning strolls, and hiding out at your locker.
You can check it out “HERE”!

FOOD: Autumn is the perfect season to test out some hearty dishes. For breakfast, try oatmeal with almonds, cashews, dried cranberries, and diced pear. Go apple picking and bake a pie from scratch! Hot beverages and Fall are totally synonymous with one another, so go tea tasting and pick a few new flavors to fall in love with this year. Play with your coffee as well and hunt down an awesome at-home pumpkin spice latte recipe.

FUN: After a summer spent outdoors, the contrast of cold weather and indoor-activities can be really enjoyable. I like to begin by picking out a bunch of must-read books I’ve been meaning to check out. It’s nice to get lost in literature once in a while. Rainy days are a perfect excuse for lighting candles, heating up some cider, and digging into a good read. You may find your creative wheels spinning, and I definitely suggesting journaling, doodling, sketching, and painting. Take a camera with you on your next autumn walk. Snap photos of the bare trees, spooky fields, foggy roads, etc. Collect fallen leaves and dry out some flowers. Make a memorable autumn inspiration journal! Don’t forget to include some ticket stubs, coffee stains, and tea bag labels. If you happen to stumble upon any large tree branches, bring them home, dip them in gold paint, and dangle them from your ceiling!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

FEATURED ARTIST: FRUIT KITTEN


Rina (fruit kitten) is based in a small town near Vienna, Austria. 
She initially intended on studying cultural and social anthropology, 
but always loved to draw and dreamed of one day becoming a tattoo artist of comic illustrator. 
Inspired by manga and anime as a child, she let both styles influence her creatively, 
but has managed to develop an artistic flare all her own. 
Each piece she finishes come complete with sweet deer antlers are super rosey cheeks. Rina pulls a lot of inspiration from observing nature, listening to music, 
and her appreciation for tattoo art. 
Her standard chosen medium is old school illustration with pencils and Copic markers. Only occasionally will she ever use a computer when drawing.

I adore Rina's work and I think you will as well!
Be sure to check out her other pieces via her instagram and official Facebook page!
IG: fruit_kitten
LOVE Rina's illustration of me, pictured below!

Monday, October 14, 2013

AN AUTUMN PLAYLIST

BEDROOM DECOR UPDATE

These past few months have been a little crazy.
My family moved over the summer, and with a move comes a lot of chaos,
organizing, and settling in.
Now that we're a bit more established in our new home,
I really wanted to share some of my new decor with you!
I made some minor changes to my bedroom with fresh paint and new carpeting.
I found the carpet wholesale and super cheap!
There are still a few odds and ends that need to be purchased, 
but thus far I'm quite happy with my new space.
The first thing I did before changing anything out, 
was map out where my furniture would go, using blue tape.
I wanted to be sure that my existing pieces would all fit properly.
I made notes on my photos to remind myself of where I wanted to place specific items of furniture, and decor touches I wanted to remember.
The minor swaps I made took only a few days and made all the difference.
My room immediately looked bigger and brighter!
I'm so pleased with the way my room has turned out.
Still on the hunt for some new wall art and a clever way of storing vinyl records.

Monday, August 26, 2013

10 QUESTIONS WITH LEILANI SHIMODA OF WILDFOX SWIM

If you're a fan of Wildfox, then you're surely a fan of their creative and innovative swimline.
Each collection unique, vibrant, and clever in it's own right.
Wildfox Swim is a collaboration between the brilliant Kimberley Gordon and lovely Leilani Shimoda.
Leilani has been a member of the Wildfox team for two years now,
and it's a match made in roller-disco, mermaid heaven! 
Their newest creations recently debuted with a splash at Miami swim week.
Inspired by the bold women of the 1970s, 
Wildfox's newest swimline evokes images of Charlie's Angels, 70s color pop,
roller disco, and iridescent pastel mermaids.
The line truly suits any and every girl.
Whether you're a tomboy: looking to run through the surf and play a little beach volleyball, 
or totally feminine: laying out by the pool, flaunting your curves, and dreaming of pink palm trees- 
there's a suit fit for you!
The new line is a tremendous leap forward from Wildfox's last swimline,
with more styles, resort wear, and a wide variety of designs.
Both Leilani and Wildfox have surely made a name for themselves in swimwear!
I'm so in love with the new line and I'm sure you will be too!
Check out the paisley onepiece below. Can't wait to get my hands on it for summer 2014!
Be sure to also checkout Leilani's designs for Wildfox Pajamas here.
Both Leilani and her handsome cat, Shrampton, are on instagram!
Follow them: myshimoda & shrampton

Monday, August 12, 2013

ELECTRIC RASPBERRY x IHATEBLONDE: The Last of the Summer Sleepovers

Summer is drawing to a close. 
Endless afternoons sneaking onto rooftop pools, sipping watermelon juice, 
and kissing the mirrors of country club powder rooms.
Hopping on their skateboards, collecting sunflowers, chewing Bubble Tape.
Holding hands and laughing ‘til tiny tears trickle down past their sun-kissed cheeks.
It’s been perfect.
But they’re all too aware that soon the autumn clouds will loom overhead.
They’ll bundle up beneath thick turtlenecks and sip hot chocolate at the corner bookstore. 
They’ll carve pumpkins and dip caramel apples. 
They’re excited for Fall, but for now, they relish in the last stretch of their coveted heat wave.
One last sleepover to ice their summer cake.
In their apartment, playing dress-up. Never too old to play pretend.
Pink platforms, strawberry Pocky. Champagne and martinis, Clueless on repeat.
Dreaming big. They’ve spent the last of their savings. They don’t know what they’re doing, where they’re going. 
But, they know for sure that they’ll be there together, wherever “there” is.
Out on the streets of New York, well past 3 a.m.- hunting for pizza, of course.
They grab two slices and lay out under the stars.
Finding constellations and mapping out their plans.
Plans for a forever friendship, for endless love, and for unforgettable memories.
Living life the way they’d always hoped they would. 
Fun and free.

model/photos: IHATEBLONDE

Friday, July 26, 2013

10 QUESTIONS WITH EMILY FAULSTICH DU PREEZ

You may not recognize Emily as Hawaiian Coconut, but you've likely gawked at her beautiful photos a billion times whilst surfing the internet.
Maybe you're familiar with Wildfox Couture,  
the brand Em co-founded with childhood bff Kimberly Gordon back in '07. 
In any case, you'll certainly WANT to get aquatinted with her work 
because the girl is a powerhouse of all things inspiration.
Now living in Cape Town, South Africa- Emily has some new projects in store for us, including the launch of her new full-scale site for Hawaiian Coconut!
One of my all-time girl crushes, Emily's blog inspires.
Filled wish neon pink sunsets, warm evenings, floral pillows, fresh strawberry smoothies, coconut ice cream, white sand, and sunkissed skin.
Her blog is a little beach house tucked away on the map of the web.
Check out her photography and keep on the lookout for her new site!
I promise her photos will remind you of magic and it's existence within our day-to-day.