let's getaway {newport}

Lets GETAWAY_newportpsd 1. J.Crew / 2. Tiny Armour / 3. Kiel James Patrick / 4. Land's End Canvas / 5. J. Crew / 6. Neuaura 

I know I know, I've only just returned from a weekend getaway but summer is nearly over and I can't help but think of Newport, Rhode Island. I spent the Fall semester of my Junior year of college at URI and I fell in love with it. Everything was so different from LA: the people, the scenery, the ocean, the style - I didn't need to study abroad to be in a totally different world. It was the first time I had ever seen and experienced real autumn foliage and I even learned how to sail thanks to the free lessons on offer from the cute boys on the sailing team. While out in the bay during sailing practice, shivering from the freezing temperatures of the approaching winter, I imagined what RI and Newport would be like in the summer. Touring the old mansions, eating quahog (local name of a shellfish, not The Family Guy's town), and enjoying a refreshing ice cream during a leisurely stroll along the waterfront. That place was built for summer merry making and I did promise myself that we would meet again. I might even see how much jib sheet and knots action I remember ;)

weekend, we

from homekl weekend kl weekend kl weekend kl weekend

Hi how was your weekend? A nearby wildfire made the air quality awful so we only left the house once to collect a package from the main post office. Navigating the collection center should have been adventure enough for the day but since it was near Chinatown we decided to stop by a cafe/art gallery that I had read about called The Warehouse. Right across the street is the oldest Hindu Temple in the city,  Sri Mahamariamman. We didn't go inside but wow is it striking, definitely worth going back to.

We then headed to the mall to pick up the dress shirts Joe had custom-made for him because he's too tall for the off-the-rack options here (ha!). I'm glad we had to pick them up because a few floors below is our new favorite donut shop, J. Co. They have crazy good concoctions but the best is simply their giant cups of coffee served with a free glazed donut. When they're fresh out of the oven they taste better than Krispy Kreme, no lie.

The donuts were a definite highlight but nothing felt better than opening up our snail mail and finding two drawings from my nieces. I immediatley held them to my chest and starting crying. I'm such a sap. I pictured them both holding the crayons with their tiny little fingers, scribbling around, and chit chatting like they do when they get excited about something. Did you notice the creative corner foldings on Juliana's art work??? Oh my sweet girls. Being away from them is the toughest part of this expat adventure we're on. I miss them like crazy but I am thankful for every digital kiss I get from them when we talk via FaceTime. Isabella even hugs the iPhone and I of course hug it her right back.

If you got to spend time with your family this weekend I hope you enjoyed every moment of it! Those truly are special moments.

I gotta love my sister for sending me a recent J.Crew catalogue, too. She knows me well.

let the bright in

When it comes to color, my wardrobe is a little dull. Don't get me wrong I love my black, gray, and neutral go-to's but a girl could use some brights in her life right?

I decide to start with the basics so I snatched up a comfy J. Crew tee that was on sale. The actual color of the shirt is much more neon than the photo shows so before buying it I thought "do I risk being mistaken for a crosswalk guard?" Yes, absolutely. Let's live a little.

What American Apparel was to Hipsters, J. Crew is to me

Hello, my name is Ana Maria and I'm a J. Crew-aholic. I've always been a fan of the brand but in the last couple of years two key things have happened: they've amped up their style (thank you Mickey Drexler and Jenna Lyons) and I'm finally able to afford bits and pieces from their collections.

Being a sucker for classically styled looks that blend tom-boyish charm with feminine sensibilities, I find their quality hard to resist. The fact that I know I will want to wear each piece for years to come makes buying from them even easier. And can we talk about their catalog photography?! The on-location ones never fail to please.

J. Crew's latest catalog, Gone Hollywood, was shot all around LA: the Hollywood sign, Beverly Hills, Paramount Studios, and Chateau Marmont. I literally drooled at the sight of this sneak peek via the LA Times last week.

Yesterday, I learned about their new documentary About a Shoe. It follows members of the J. Crew design team to Italy as they visit and work with their shoe manufacturer. The film is beautifully made and I absolutely love that they pay credit to the shoe artisans who have been working their craft for generations.

Needless to say this makes me love my leather ballet flats even more...It's pretty ridiculous how excited I get about their collections, catalogs, and now movies. They've got me. They've really got me.

Clothes Karma

It was time to clean out the closet and make space for pieces that I really love and still wear. There's just no point in holding onto things I don't use, especially when there are great re-sale and donation options.

A full bag (yes, it was reusable, of course!) and visit to Crossroads Trading Co. later, and I'm in possession of a $48 credit to shop other people's previously loved fashions.

I NEVER browse the pants section but since J Brand Love Story jeans have been on my mind for months - and I missed their recent warehouse sale - I decided to take a look. Lo and behold, there they were, hanging in all their glory.... a pair of Love Story jeans in my size...and for a mere $30 (!!!).

Paired those with a silk Nina Ricci blouse and a ruffle J. Crew tank and my out-of-pocket expense was $10...one of the best hauls ever!

Cleaning out space to make room for the new, especially when the new is pre-loved, makes for excellent clothing karma.