Playin’ it cool in stripes, distressed denim, and sneaks

I’m all about effortlessly chic looks: those outfits that you can easily throw on, not have to worry if something’s tucked in or not, but still look put together.

One element that easily achieves this look is stripes. I can’t get enough of stripes! Something about the clean line work and contrast between the striping colors automatically convey a sense of sophistication and confidence no matter what it’s combined with. Pair stripes with some distressed denim (could be a skirt, shorts, jeans, etc.), and now the outfit has a casual, comfy chic vibe!

I wore this outfit for a casual lunch and an afternoon of running errands. The sneakers were definitely a good shoe of choice to get from place to place, while staying consistent with the relaxed feel of everything else. 

Hope you all have had a great week so far; Friday’s just around the corner!

<3 jenn

Outfit details:

Sweater: Madewell

Skirt: Abercrombie

Sneakers: American Rag (on super sale! only $20!)

Necklace: Madewell

Bag: Celine

Sunglasses: Prada

Texas State Capitol! Texas State Capitol Dome View from Congress Avenue Bridge while waiting for the bats It was windy while waiting around at sunset for the bats! Scuse my hair, told you it was windy! View of Austin from Mount Bonnell

Austin Part 1: Hangin’ Around Town

Last weekend, I spent 4 days in Austin, Texas (yeeeehaw!). It was my first time there, and I had a blast! So much to do, see, eat, drink, and explore. When first booking my trip, I thought to myself, 3 nights should be plenty. But throughout the planning process, I found out that there was way more to do than my itinerary allowed. But I still managed to squeeze in a bunch of stuff, and here’s part 1 of my observations and recommendations should you plan a trip to Austin one day!

The weather wasn’t as hot nor humid as I thought it’d be for spring!

While I was there in the beginning/mid-May, the temperature hit lows of 70 degrees and highs of 90. I always thought that Texas (Austin included) was super humid, but I was wrong! Don’t be fooled, I still felt hot. But the heat was actually quite dry in Austin with the exception of the very first night because it had just rained prior to us arriving. The spring dresses, tank and short combos, and comfortable sandals/flats were all I needed for the weekend getaway.

Because there are so many sights and areas to explore within Austin, I recommend renting a car for ultimate flexibility.

From your typical tourist attractions to more local-infused hotspots, Austin has a variety of places to visit. Highlights from my trip include visiting…

The State Capitol: The building and grounds were beautiful, and you can check out everything for free!

Barton Springs Pool: This is a fun destination for lounging and swimming within Zilker Park (basically Austin’s equivalent of SF’s Golden Gate Park or NYC’s Central Park). But beware! Because this pool is filled with natural spring water, you’ll be swimming in cool, 70-degree water and have gooey algae floating around you!

Mount Bonnell: Highest point in Austin with beautiful views of the city and the surrounding greenery. Also a great place for a short hike and picnic lunch (especially if you can snag one of the few tables)!

Southern Congress (SoCo) District: Cute area with lots of restaurants and boutiques! To save you time locating the most happenin’ part of SoCo (unlike my friends and I that drove around aimlessly trying to find it), the main strip of restaurants and shops lies directly on South Congress Avenue between Nellie and Annie Street.

Congress Avenue Bridge Bats: Everyday hundreds of bats fly out from under the Congress Avenue Bridge Batman-style, so it’s definitely a spectacle to check out! When I went, the viewing experience wasn’t the best because the bats didn’t come out till after dark (so it was harder to see them), but I don’t have any regrets. I hear the viewing is best in the peak summer months (July through September).

Finally, Austin is an awesome city for bar hopping and getting your drank on! The bar scene is made up of distinctly different neighborhoods with lots of fun rooftop bars.

6th Street: Along 6th Street, there are various stretches of bars. The 2 areas I visited were “Dirty” 6th (cheap alcohol, lots of drunk college kids wandering around, pretty wild and divey) and West 6th (where many young professionals hang out, lots of great happy hours, etc.). Between the two, I really liked West 6th because of the more sophisticated vibe. But who am I kidding, I’m probably just too old to hang on Dirty :)

Rainey Street: Holy crap, I am in love with Rainey Street! It’s a whole block of houses converted into unique bars and clubs. Feels like you’re going to awesome house parties! My favorite bar of the trip was called Container Bar, where the entire design of the bar was created with cargo shipping containers. The crowd on Rainey Street is a good mix of young professionals and hipsters, so that definitely made me feel at home being from San Francisco!

Outside of the above attractions, there were so many other things I didn’t get to do like visiting the University of Texas, the local museums, hiking popular trails, and partaking in water sports on Lake Austin. Guess all that’ll give me a reason to visit again!

Part 2 with all the deets on FOOD to come soon!

<3 jenn

Springtime in the City in Purple and Denim

The weather has been heating up more than usual recently; can’t believe we’re just a month and a half from summer! Can’t wait to break out more shorts, skirts, and dresses as the temperature rises.

This past weekend, I was out and about town – brunching, shopping, and enjoying the sunshine. I wasn’t in the mood to carry around a jacket, so instead I opted to wear a ¾ sleeve, breathable top to protect from slight breezes throughout the day. Though I originally bought the purple top to add to my office wear wardrobe, I decided to dress it down by wearing it on top of casual denim shorts. My top and bottom were pretty minimalist, so I finished the look off with my statement pearl necklace and studded sandals.

Easy breezy look for a day wandering around town! I spent most of the afternoon browsing around shops downtown, and the low, stacked heel sandals were perfect for that - stylish yet practical for everyday wear (and much more affordable than their Isabel Marant look-alikes!).

Hope the weather’s been beautiful for everyone else! Thanks for reading, and have a great week!

<3 jenn

Outfit details:

Top: Ann Taylor Loft

Denim shorts: H&M

Sandals: Chinese Laundry (on sale! and don’t mind the band-aid on my toe ; ) )

Necklace: Banana Republic (on sale!)

Bag: Celine

Sunglasses: Prada

Zip It! 

Zippers don’t always need to be functional; they just need to look good! Recently, I’ve been addicted to my faux leather skirt with zipper detailing (which is only there for aesthetic purposes). The zippers add a sense of edge and pizzazz to an otherwise plainer-looking skirt. Zip details also convey an urban chic quality when utilized on other articles of clothing like jackets, pants, and more.

I’ve enjoyed pairing my zip faux leather skirt with a large variety of tops, jackets, and shoes. It matches with practically everything! Because the zippers already add visual interest on the bottom half, I can choose to wear simple, solid colored tops or balance things out with patterns up top. 

<3 jenn

Outfit details:

Shirt: Zara (similar here)

Skirt: Zara (similar here)

Shoes: Tory Burch

Playing with Proportions: Mini with a Loose Tee and Blazer

I’ve been addicted to plain tees recently. Especially when you have a neutral colored tee, you can practically where it on top of anything, then change up the jewelry and coat to vary the look from day to day.

Because a simple tee often comes in a more relaxed fit, I advise to play around with proportions, fit, and accessories to add a more feminine touch to your outfit. I paired my simple gray tee with a polka dotted mini and a bold, pearl bauble necklace to bring out some femininity while wearing my relaxed tee, boyfriend blazer, and rugged boots.

Hope everyone’s week is off to a good start!

<3 jenn 

Outfit details:

Shirt: Gap

Blazer: Urban Outfitters

Necklace: Banana Republic (on sale!)

Skirt: BCBGMaxazria

Boots: Clarks (Winter 2012)