a lovely living

New Favorites

I turn to denim + denim often and always love the easy, laid-back look that results. I found these jeans while I was on the hunt for a great summer jean and I have been wearing the heck out of them. They’ve been on Instagram but somehow I had yet to share them here on the blog, sorry about that! I love them though. It’s been a while since I’ve bought a pair of jeans without stretch to them, but I’m really happy with this pair. I wanted high-waisted, distressed, in a light wash and that’s exactly what I found in this pair from Madewell.

Also to note, I finally found a backpack that I love, yay! They are gaining popularity and I can certainly see why. I’m on my way out of the diaper bag phase (not completely as my babe isn’t potty trained yet, but I no longer require ALL the baby things), but I still haul around a fair amount of goodies for my little ones. The idea of being hands free and giving my shoulder a rest seemed idealistic… and it really is! I finally settled on this backpack from Matt & Nat and am very happy with my decision. It sat in my cart until my husband approached me around Mother’s Day and asked if there was anything special I had my eye on ;) Well, actually, yes!! The color is a little more taupe-y in person than the cream it leans towards online, but I prefer that as it’ll hide dirt a little better :) All in all, I highly recommend this classy and sophisticated looking backpack!

Details: Gap top (similar here and here) / Madewell jeans / Matt & Nat backpack / Stella & Dot monogram necklace / DV shoes

Graphic T’s

I love a good graphic tee. I wear them year round, but they are especially prevalent in my closet during the summer. It may have something to do with the fact that less layers are necessary during the warmer months, but I hate having to sacrifice the cute factor of an outfit! These tee’s solve that problem. I’ve gathered some of my favorites to share with you today and then I went a step further to give you some ideas on how to wear yours. Scroll down to see how you could take them from office appropriate (just throw a cute blazer over the first look, and tone down the color if you must) to weekend ready with a few simple changes…

(all images are click-able)

Styled with Noonday Collection

Happy Friday, guys! Today I’m styling a beautiful piece that I borrowed from my girlfriend’s Noonday Collection, isn’t it awesome?! In case you have not heard of Noonday yet, they partner with artisan entrepreneurs in vulnerable parts of the world and connect them to a growing marketplace. In turn, these artisans are then empowered to make a difference in their own communities. Their pieces are so striking and unique, you’ll likely have a hard time finding a favorite! You may remember my earrings that I styled here earlier this year. I also love this wooden necklace, this beautiful printed scarf and these fun tassel earrings. Check them out, treat yourself, a friend or family member (what a great gift!) and help make an impact that spreads around the world!

Details: Noonday Collection necklace / SheIn top c/o / JCrew Factory denim (similar here and here) / Shoes (similar)

One-pieces Under One-hundred

Memorial Day is nearly here which means the pools for all of us in the northeast are soon to be opening! I’ll have one trying out swim team this summer and one taking lessons, so I have my pool-side time cut out for me! That’s fine by me, though. I love spending time with my water babies all summer long! Keeping an eye on three in the water is no small task, but when they are happy, I am happy ;)

I’m much more comfortable in a one-piece and they seem to be the ‘it’ thing lately….they’ve seriously come such a long way! I’ve found a bunch of options, all of which are adorable and all of which are under $100! Oh, and all of which have decent rear coverage. I don’t know what this trend is to leave half of your behind hanging out, but it’s not exactly for this mid-thirties mom ;)

 

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Baby Blue Ruffles

I hope all of you Mother’s enjoyed a wonderful Mother’s Day and are refreshed and ready for the week ahead! I was eager to wear this one shoulder, ruffled top that you saw me try on last week in my LOFT Dressing Room post. It’s so soft and feminine and I adore the beautiful shade of blue that it came in. I’m thinking I’d like to dress it down with some distressed denim for a date night….but still with heels, because I’m pretty sure this top requires heels ;)

Details: LOFT top / Pants (similar) / Steve Madden shoes (similar here and here) / Kate Spade bag (similar) / Earrings (similar)

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Dressing Room Diaries: LOFT Sale

Happy Friday, guys! With rain getting in the way of any potential shoots this week and LOFT offering another sale (30% off or 40% off with your Loft card and code LOVEMOM), a dressing room diaries just sort of fell into place. Audrey was with me for the first run, but we ran out of time as we had to get to her 2 year old well visit! So I ventured back again on my own to make sure I tackled as much as I could. So if you see some little two year old feet poking into some of the shots, you’ll know who they belong to ;) Let’s jump into things…

This top is very sweet. A little bit of eyelet detail and a little bit of fringe. A loose, comfortable fit with a ladylike feel. I’m not sold on these cropped denim though. They hit right at my mid-calf with a little flare that only seems to widen at the wrong place.

Here’s another beautiful top. Beautiful print, beautiful colors and a fun peplum hem. I paired it with these shorts, but would love it with white denim pants as well.

Black and white are not my best colors, but I just adore these gingham shorts. Think about pairing any number of bright colored tops or even some statement t-shirts with them!

And check out the back of this blouse….yes, please!

I thought this was a fun skirt to play with. I like how it can be dressed up for the office, but again could easily be dressed down with a cute t-shirt.

Ruffled, wrap skirts seem to be big at the moment, but many of them can be quite pricy. This one has a great fit and is priced very reasonably, especially with the sale! And the top…adorable!

I loved this little off-the-shoulder romper but I needed one size down and they were out of it. Had I been wearing the right size I’m pretty sure I would have loved it even more.

I thought this dress was so pretty on the hanger, but I often struggle with shift dresses looking too boxy on me and that was the case here. Still a beautiful dress though!

I liked this combo together. The top is soft and comfortable. It has a good length to it and looks cute tied in the front as well. The pants were also fun! Out of my element a bit, but I really like the wide leg style.

This sleeveless sweater is adorable. It comes in three colors, none of which looked good on me, but they may on you! The side tie was certainly hard to walk away from ;)

I may need to head back to the store now that I see this top again. Perfect with denim shorts or dressed up with some white or red pants!

Love, love this top! It came home with me and I’m already debating how to style it….wide leg coral pants, pink trousers, or navy jersey pants? I’m sure you’ll see it back on here soon!

This is a beautiful maxi. Perfect length (I’m 5’7″ for reference) and beautiful colors. The picture doesn’t do it much justice.

I had seen this top online and made sure I found it in store. I liked it but wasn’t quite as impressed with it as I was with others. Still cute though ;)

This light-weight floral sweater is cute and flattering. It has a slight bell shape that adds just a little swing to the top.

And we’ll wrap this post up with this fun fringe sweater! Very fun, but in a subtle way that would allow you to play with an array of bottoms to pair it with. These shorts, I should also mention were a great length for this 30 something mom of three ;)

Hope that helps you guys! If you have any questions regarding fit/sizing etc, feel free to ask!  And make sure you let me know what goodies you find!! I also want to wish all of you Mothers, Grandmothers and Aunts a most wonderful Mother’s Day weekend! I could never do it all alone and I’m thankful for the army I have standing by me ;)

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Tutu’s for Two

Well friends, my baby is officially 2 years old! Two years ago she flew into the world the day before Mother’s Day and I took home the best present I could have received :) My husband and I refer to sweet Audrey Grace as the cherry on top of our family. She is loving with a most tender heart and adores her big brother and sister who have instilled in her an eagerness not to miss out on anything! She is thrilled to twirl around in tutu’s with her older sister but will jump into a wrestling match with her big brother without hesitation! A third child was certainly something my husband and I discussed and prayed hard about, but we had no idea just how big of a blessing she’d be to our family, and everyone she encounters!

My inspiration for this party came from a clearance box of cupcake toppers that I snagged at HomeGoods. I love when inspiration happens that way. Completely unexpected but perfect nonetheless. We celebrated with our family and a few close friends at our house and I can’t speak for Audrey, but I’m pretty sure she loved every minute ;)

I was talked out of making a cake this time (which I really enjoy doing!), but I have to admit that party prepping without the added time consumption of baking went a whole lot smoother….my husband will vouch for that ;) My cake baking days are certainly not over, but I’ve learned that I don’t have to do it all…all the time. And with that extra time, I was able to make a few things, such as the tulle tutu I used under the cake. I quite simply tied a piece of string in a circle and then tied pieces of tulle all around it and placed it under the cake. I did something similar for the topper which I tied to two grilling skewers I had on hand. Very cost effective!

I mentioned this on my Insta-stories, but a fun little tip to fancy up your cupcakes is to pipe on store bought icing. I saved time by using a boxed mix and store bought icing, but took a few extra minutes to fill a bag and make them look like they could have come from a bakery…maybe.

This little doll was the most patient thing waiting for us to sing to her. And just as a side note, every time we now sing to her (which we continue to do because it’s so darn cute) she blows out a pretend candle at the end! Cute overload.

Audrey loves her food, but she’s not a fan of getting messy. I can certainly appreciate that!!

I had made these tissue paper flowers from a pack a while ago for my little sister’s wedding shower and they have come in handy a number of times since then. The sign was another HomeGoods find and it came with a number of letters to be used to interchange greetings.

This letter board is one of my most favorite recent purchases for sure. I’ve used it for events as well as displaying quotes and bible verses around our home.

I found this cute hooray banner at Target and figured it could be used for any number of upcoming events/parties.

Audrey officially turned two yesterday, May 9th, and I fear it’s all going by too quickly. I just plan on taking advantage of the fact that she still loves to snuggle and rock with me (or her dad) for as long as possible before bed every night. Procrastination I’m sure, but as the baby she’s going to get whatever she wants ;)

Sources:

Cupcake toppers: HomeGoods (similar)
Tissue Flowers: JoAnn Fabric (similar)
Letter Board: BurxCo
HOORAY banner: Target
Happy Birthday banner: HomeGoods (similar)

Spring Sweater

Well, I haven’t been loving the cold, rainy weather we’ve been encountering, but I am happy that I’ve had this sleeveless sweater to turn to lately! I’ve shared it before on Instagram but realized that it had yet to make it onto the blog. The good news is that it also comes in a pretty periwinkle and is currently under $25! My husband, the funny guy,  likes to tease me about it being my ‘chain mail’ vest ;) I see it as a stylish, versatile layer, but that’s just me! You can see on Instagram how I’ve worn it layered under a jacket and also with jeans and a t-shirt. I promise, it’s a great piece to add to your wardrobe!

Details: LOFT sweater vest / Shirt (similar) / Pants (similar) / Shoes (similar) / Clutch (similar)

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Wishlist for the Weekend

Happy Friday and Happy Cinco de Mayo! Anyone have anything fun planned for the weekend? We’ll be celebrating Audrey’s second birthday and I’ll be mourning the fact that my baby isn’t exactly a baby anymore :( She is however, more fun than ever and just the sweetest, squishiest little love! Lot’s of tutu’s for two coming right up!!

Here’s a little wishlist to take you into the weekend. All pieces I’ve recently had my eye on. I can never have enough graphic tee’s and this little cacti number has me wanting just one more. Overall shorts….I’m definitely considering! The same goes for Birkenstock’s, for about the fifth year in a row…maybe this is my year, lol! And you know I’m hunting down the perfect backpack, right? Maybe this is it?? Also a cozy spring sweater and a pretty dress, perfect for Mother’s Day perhaps? Let me know what’s been on your wishlist lately! And have a wonderful weekend!

Embroidered T-shirt Dress

I pulled together a whole bunch of wardrobe staples for this little mid-week outfit. My striped t-shirts are plenty, but I had been on the hunt for a striped t-shirt dress and am glad I held off until I came across this one. Leave it to my friend Rebecca, owner of Elizabeth & West, to track down the most adorable dress, embroidery details included! I’ll be throwing this on often this summer, I’m sure! Rebecca has a knack for picking items that sell out quickly (I call that good taste!), so if you like this one, you shouldn’t waste any time. I’ll link a few others as well below, for when it does ;) I grabbed a vest, threw on my Converse, packed my tote and I was set to go!

Details: Elizabeth & West dress / Vest (similar) / Converse / Madewell tote (cheaper similar option)

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