a lovely living

Monthly Archives for April 2019

Mother’s Day Gift Ideas

It felt as though we waited ages for Spring to arrive and now that it’s here all the Spring things seem to be creeping up on me. Birthday’s, recitals, spring concerts and of course, Mother’s Day. I know many of you are mothers yourself, but like me, I’m guessing your focus is on your own mother, grandmother, or other mother figure in your life. Once I became a mother, my appreciation for my own mom multiplied exponentially. Who knew raising children could take so much out of you? Or the sacrifices you’d make for them? Yet it is so very rewarding at the same time. It’s a name that we hold with utmost importance and they deserve every bit of celebration on their special day.

I know most moms appreciate one on one time and thoughtful words (that we may not say often enough) to show our appreciation of them, but many of us also enjoying gifting them with a little something special that they can continue to enjoy. From practical gifts to pretty accessories, they’re all seen as a thoughtful gesture that would bring a smile to any mom’s face. Here are some ideas to get the ball rolling and keep you from scrambling last minute ;)

Happy Friday, guys! I’ve started sharing some styling videos on Instagram over the past few weeks and I’ve really been enjoying them. It seems many of you have too, which actually makes it worth it ;) Thus far, I’ve been styling clothing but I decided to add a twist and attempt a video focusing on decor. I’ve been asked about not only ideas for your mantle, but spring/summer decor in general. To be honest, I struggle when it comes to decorating my own mantle. I’m always tweaking and changing things (which is actually part of the fun), but it’s an ever evolving process, as is the rest of my home. I’m not one who requires symmetry on a mantle. Reason #1 being that I rarely have two of the same piece to flank either side! I do always start with one large piece in the center however, which anchors the space. You could use a mirror, clock, painting or other large piece of decor. From there I use everything from books, candle sticks, picture frames, vases and artificial greens to bring a little life to the space. I try to have each side feel ‘even’ but other than that I’m working on not stressing over perfection, because what is that anyway?!

Everything I use in the video is decor from my home that has been accrued over the years from here, there and everywhere. I did my best to round up similar items and included others that I feel would be great possibilities for your home. Focus on pieces you love and let the rest fall into place.

Have a wonderful weekend!

On the Farm

This past Saturday we were invited to our friends farm for an egg hunt (which included a beer hunt for the adults, b/c why should kids have all the fun?). Everyone had such a great time running around enjoying the beautiful weather as well as the gorgeous scenery. If you are local, make sure you follow Rooted Farmstead, they host weddings and other events and the owners are basically our local Chip and Jo ;)

On to the outfit. This one is made up of pieces I want you all to have! We’ll start with the dress because it’s wonderful. It was the color and simplicity that drew me in and confirmed that it’ll one I’ll be wearing on repeat this summer. I love the midi length and the casual vibe (I did wear it to a farm for an egg hunt after-all). If mint isn’t your thing, don’t be thrown, I have a number of similar options below, including this one. The jacket is one you’ve seen me wearing for years. It’s more of a splurge, but here’s my go-to steal which I love just as much. This bandana is the same style as the one I wore here. It’s slim so there’s no bulk as you worry about wrapping it just right and comes in so many pretty prints. I love how much a simple accessory can add to an outfit. The slides will likely be what I slip on most days this summer. Easy, comfortable and great quality. I ordered them in the ‘papaya’ as well for times that I need to add a little pop of color to an otherwise neutral outfit. And finally, my sunglasses are one of the few that I rotate through. LeSpecs is my favorite brand for reasonably priced sunglasses with great style! ‘No Smirking’ and ‘Bandwagon’ are my two favorite styles.

Of course I wasn’t the only one enjoying myself…

Outfit details: Dress (similar options below) / Jacket / Bandana / Sunglasses / Slides

Shop the Look:

Easter 2019

Happy Monday friends! I hope you all had a wonderful Easter weekend! We had my family up yesterday and hosted Easter dinner which is always one of my favorites. The weather was decent and the kids enjoyed every minute spending time outdoors as we prepped inside. One of my favorite parts of the day was when my sister asked my just-turned-two- year old nephew what happened to Jesus, to which he replied, ‘He died and came back’. That He did.

Post church family pictures are an Easter tradition of ours. I love capturing these images on an annual basis so I can look back over the years. In just a few short weeks Jack will turn 10, Madelyn 7 and Audrey 4. TIME FLIES! Jack and I typically take turns with the camera (he’s much better, mind you), but when a by-stander offers to take a family picture we won’t turn it down! The girls wanted to be in every single picture and were full of smiles and poses (Audrey’s little dress swing above is killing me, lol!). The girls love when they get to wear matching outfits and they were especially fond of these dresses (I found them at a Janie & Jack outlet). If only it came in my size I would have joined them! My dress is almost sold out, but if you’re on the hunt I’ve gathered some other beautiful navy dresses you can check out below.

Dress / Shoes

Wide Leg Denim

Here’s an outfit full of a bunch of spring/summer staples for me. These were the jeans that I shared from my try-on Monday. I love everything from the high-waist, wide leg and cropped, raw hem. The shirt is a must-have for the warmer months. I love the button back on this particular style. It’s subtle yet makes a statement. The heels I’m obsessed with! They also come in navy and light blue and can be worn with jeans or dresses alike. Plus, they’re 50% off right now! This cute bandana was an in-store find, one that I likely wouldn’t have noticed online. What I love most is that it’s a ‘skinny’ bandana which means you don’t need to worry about twisting and wrapping it just-so, so that the ends aren’t hanging out. There are a bunch of prints on sale now (I already ordered a second) and love what a fun accessory they will be for summer. Finally, this bag was a purchase last year and I still adore it. This particular bag is no longer available but I found some options below that are just as adorable.

Shirt / Denim / Heels / Bandana / Bag (similar options below) / Earrings (similar)

J.Crew Try-On

Happy Monday, all! It was a great weekend full of friends, family, soccer and grocery shopping. I’d call it well rounded ;) I was in Pittsburgh Saturday afternoon for my cousin’s baby shower where btw I had the most amazing piece of lavender infused cake, Oh.My.Goodness! (if you’re local to the area, it came form here). Afterwards we had some time to swing by the mall where I was able to make some returns and do a few quick try-ons while I was there. J.Crew was having a great sale (that’s still running through today) and is always one of my favorite stores to get to visit in person. Online shopping is convenient, but shopping first hand allows me to find things I may otherwise scroll right past on the computer screen.

My only complaint is that the dressing room lighting was horrific! When in doubt, always blame the lighting. But seriously, why have retailers not yet realized that if you provide good lighting (and good mirrors) people will buy all the things?! Someone should hire me ;)

These cropped denim were probably my favorite find. They have a perfect high-rise, a great medium wash, raw hem and were already marked down. I’m wearing my typical size 26. The eyelet top was adorable and comes in a bunch of colors. Would easily go from work to play.
This second eyelet top was beautiful. I’m wearing a size 2 and although I believe the fit is to be slightly oversized, I would have liked to try one size smaller which they unfortunately didn’t have. I wanted to try their white denim in their boyfriend fit and although the fit was good, I wasn’t in love with them. I wish I had more time to try on other styles, but that’ll have to come by mail another time ;)
These were cute denim shorts. I love the wash and exposed button fly. They do run big though, I had to size down one size.
They don’t have this ‘ice cream’ tee online yet, but I’ll be sure to update once they do!
Cute short sleeved chambray top. Fit is TTS (I’m in an XS).
This style of pant is always 50/50 for me. A lot of times I end up with a rear gap which always eliminates them for me. But these were clear winners. The fit is so flattering with the perfect amount of stretch and they run TTS. They for sure came home with me.
I couldn’t capture the beauty this color pink, but you really should see it in person. I had it on during some Instagram stories yesterday and received a bunch of comments on it. Why is a great basic sweatshirt SO good?! I’m wearing a size S here but bought the XS which still has a slightly oversized fit.
I’ve had this same skirt for a few years now and it’s classic, flattering shape never gets old. I love it’s length and the exposed buttons add the perfect amount of interest to break up the denim.
And lastly I wanted to give this dress a try to see how it fit. I have to say, on me I wasn’t impressed. I loved the detail and the length, but it didn’t do much for the chest area. I felt like it should have either had an empire waist or a wider band where it wrapped in front. Cute dress overall, but it was a no-go for me.

Insta Lately

Hey guys! Happy Friday! This week has felt like a marathon around here but I can see the finish line! I have a baby shower to attend tomorrow which means I get to spend the day with my mom and sister traveling and maybe a little shopping afterwards. It also means I’ll be trapped in a car while they belt out show tunes the whole time, lol. Don’t get me wrong, I love show tunes, I just can’t sing. Pray for me ;)

Today I’ve rounded up some of my latest Instagram posts in order to share a little of what’s been going on around here as well as what I’ve been wearing for my day to day. Enjoy and have a wonderful weekend!

Loving my new hairdryer (thanks again for everyone’s recommendation)
shirt / denim / jacket (similar) / booties
shirt / denim / shoes (similar)
I added this larger rug to layer in our living room and my husband doesn’t understand me but I love it :)

Shop Bop is having one of their BIG sales today through Friday. This is the place to grab any of those pricier pieces that you have your eye on and rarely go on sale! Get your go-to denim for the summer, a fresh pair of Converse, or a fun frilly top. I always get asked about my Le Specs sunglasses, I have both this and this pair and they are not only cute but comfortable. I also LOVE Monrow t-shirts. They are priced higher than a lot of other tee’s but the quality is well worth it, especially on sale. For those that have been eyeing the Madewell overall’s, they’re on here too!

A few of my favorites are below to check out. Don’t wait long, sizes are sure to sell out! And use code EVENT19 at checkout to get 20% off your order (or 25% off of $500+).

Dressed in Navy

If I had to pick one color to wear forever, navy would probably be it. It’s universally flattering and looks great all year round! Since it’s so great, I decided to just take this look monochromatic. If you’re on the hunt for workwear, this top and pair of pants are two pieces you should look into. The pants have an elastic waist (I know, you’re already sold) with a laid-back feel yet professional vibe. The top resembles some others I have from Madewell, but it’s actually another Loft gem. I’ve styled it with jeans just as easily and I’ll be wearing it with denim shorts come summer time. A camel trench is a great piece to have on hand. It’s a great way to ground an outfit and a classic color that will go with almost anything.

If you want to see more ways of styling this particular top, check out my latest styling video on Instagram to get some ideas. I’ll have it up later today!

Details: Top / Pants / Jacket (similar here and below) / Sunglasses / Shoes (similar) / Earrings

Think Pink

Happy Friday! It’s been a busy week on here and I haven’t even gotten around to sharing and style inspo with you until now! I’ve loved hearing all of your feedback on both The Faster Way post as well as the Interior Renovation that I shared. I love that I can share a little bit of all aspects of my life on here, because it all ties together for me and is hopefully helpful in one way or another for you!

This is a typical spring outfit for me, but I love it especially because of this particular color combination. Pink and green is just so good. This sweater is beautiful, light-weight and has a flattering fit with a darling scoop back. It’s 40% off today, so don’t let this one sell out on you! The jacket has quickly become my go-to spring jacket, and one that I wouldn’t have necessarily thought would be. I grabbed it on sale a few weeks ago and love it not only for it’s loose, laid-back vibe, but also for all of the details and longer length. It definitely stands out from my other cargo jackets. It’s a pricier piece for me (which is why I bought it on sale), but I’ll be keeping an eye on it for you guys in hopes that it drops in price again!

I’ve also been getting a ton of feedback as I’ve been breaking these Levi’s out again with the weather warming up. I’ve had these since last year at the recommendation of a friend and I adore them. They are the Levi wedgie fit. I believe these are the exact wash, but this pair is also very similar. I size up one in Levi’s, so keep that in mind if ordering.

Details: Sweater / Jacket / Jeans (similar) / Earrings / Booties (similar)