Saturday, June 30, 2012

Have a lovely weekend!

Happy weekend, everyone!  What are you up to?  We went to a Ben Folds Five concert last night.  It made me feel like I was a young girl of eighteen again (aside from the freely available beers, haha).  Other than that and going to this monthly frame shop outlet sale (working on a gallery wall project), we are laying low.  How about you?  It's going to be a scorcher in Chicago this weekend (and most of the rest of the country, it seems), so stay cool out there, and enjoy the following from somewhere air conditioned.  :)


Turn your iPhone into an underwater camera! (via swissmiss)

An article about the woman who wrote this book about being The Receptionist for The New Yorker.

The fascinating portfolio of prop stylist Randi Brookman Harris.

Hilarious and true sentiment about working in an office.

New Chicago design shops.

Matisse and Miss Moss.  (Does this lady have an eye or what?)

Tips from a pro on keeping your unmentionables in top condition.

Darling kids' art project (with grownup ideas too).

And a darling sweater!

Why you don't have to feel bad for liking stuff(I love this!)

This is my philosophy on design too. :)

Interesting take on the moms/dads/kids/work debate.

I think I have some strong disagreements with "The Greatest Outfits Ever."

A song to enjoy over the weekend (fascinating: they hit it big when they won Iceland's Battle of the Bands competition!).

(Photo by Franck Courtes via Note to Self)

Friday, June 29, 2012

Fourth of July Lake Lounging

Happy Friday, everyone!  Even though the Fourth of July isn't until next week, I have to imagine that some of you are heading out today or tomorrow for an extended holiday weekend.  In case you fall in that category (or if you're like me and just wish you did), here's a lovely ensemble and appropriate accoutrements for lounging lakeside, poolside, beachside, or wherever else you might be headed.  Hope there are good books, fun folks, and cool drinks in your future!  (Speaking of cool drinks, that cute ikat bag is a cooler.  How awesome is that?)
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Stila Convertible Color For Lips And Cheeks, Gerbera

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Williams-Sonoma Rustic European Picnic Blanket ($29); Forever 21 red sunglasses ($5.80); Joe Fresh Marine Boatneck Tee ($24); American Apparel Dark Wash Denim Leisure Short ($34); Madewell Polka-Dot Keds ($62); J. Crew sailboat bikini ($52/$46);  Stila Convertible Color cheek and lip color ($25); o-check for top hat notebook from Madewell ($8); Igloo Ikat Zag Leftover 9-Can Cooler Tote ($17.99); The Receptionist by Janet Groth ($13.01); Huffy Deluxe Cruiser Bike ($127.99); Minnie & Emma French Shirt customizable iPhone case ($55).

What are you doing for the Fourth of July?

(Top image via Smitten Studio.)

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Jessica Hische

Do you have any completely random people that you're in awe of because of the internet?  In addition to convincing myself that I would be BFFs with Tom and Lorenzo and the Fug Girls, I am sort of obsessed with the work of illustrator, letterer, and designer Jessica Hische

Her portfolio website is the kind of site that you end up clicking around on forever, because everything you look at is more interesting than the thing that came before it (and you simply must check out the "teen girl mode."  Trust me, you'll crack up).  Her work has been in magazines like People, O, and InStyle, too.
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She also designs beautiful letters for designers (and the rest of us) to use.  Wouldn't these be gorgeous on personal notecards, letterhead, or wedding stationery?  (Many, many more at Daily Drop Cap; see them all here.)  

I used her Buttermilk font to make "babies shower" invitations for a friend's shower ( (she was having twins!), and for my annual girls' Oscars party.  I loved the way they turned out.  Although please, please pardon the iPhone photos and very (un)professionally-done obscuring of personal details, ha!  You can purchase the font here.
And right after I sent out the invitations, I saw this book for sale at Anthropologie.  Hello, Buttermilk.  Isn't it funny how once you learn about something, you start seeing it everywhere? 
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You can send a little love someone's way with some of Jessica's work, too: she illustrated this Love stamp for the United States Postal Service (how awesome would these be for wedding invitations, in lieu of the usual offerings of cakes and flowers and wedding bands?). 
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A friend just forwarded me her wedding invitation, and it's everything you would expect from such a creative designer: in addition to being funny and totally outside-the-box, it enlists the help of the couple's extensive group of artist friends to tell the story of how they met and fell in love.
You can also see Jessica and Russ's sweet engagement announcement here

Isn't her work amazing?

How I Met Your Mother

Thanks to the wonder that is Netflix, I have been on an absolute tear through How I Met Your Mother in the last couple of weeks.  I've never watched it before, but the promises that were made to me about how people "my age" would think it's hilarious have proven correct.  (And it's funny to see Jason Segel in action before he was the kind of movie star that he is now).  Even though it bears almost no resemblance to Sex and the City, watching these guys hang out at "their bar" is eerily similar to watching the girls at "their diner," and has a way of making you wish fervently that you had that much time on your hands to hang out with your friends. 

It's been a while since I've watched a half hour sitcom, and without commercials, the episodes are just over twenty minutes.  Perfect for dish-washing or laundry-folding distraction.

Are you watching anything funny these days?

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Nora Ephron

"You do get to a certain point in life where you have to realistically, I think, understand that the days are getting shorter, and you can’t put things off thinking you’ll get to them someday. If you really want to do them, you better do them. There are simply too many people getting sick, and sooner or later you will. So I’m very much a believer in knowing what it is that you love doing so you can do a great deal of it." -Nora Ephron (via Swissmiss)
As you've likely seen or heard already, writer and director Nora Ephron died yesterday.  She was 71.  Her writing was my favorite sort of thing: funny and witty, and even though she was whip-smart and wrote for intelligent people, there was never the slightest hint that she was stuck up or trying to impress people with how brilliant she was.  She managed to write about the everyday human experience in an authentic and insightful voice that was a pleasure to read.

Some well-deserved (and of course, funny, since they quote her extensively) tributes to Nora Ephron that I've seen today:
Nora Ephron, Essayist, Screenwriter, and Director, Dies at 71, by Charles McGrath for The New York Times
Love, Loss, and Nora Ephron, by Sous Style
In Memoriam: Nora Ephron, by Habitually Chic
6 Things Nora Ephron Said About Fashion That We Will Always Love Her For, by Racked

I'll always, always love When Harry Met Sally.  What's your favorite?

(Image of Nora Ephron on the set of You've Got Mail, which she directed and co-wrote, via The New York Times, photo credit Brian Hamill/Warner Brothers.)

Ladies' lunch

I mentioned last Friday that I was going to a gathering at my friend's pool over the weekend.  As if just inviting us over to her pool wasn't enough (aren't swimming pools such a treat when you're a grown up, especially when you live in a city?), my friend Jeanne also made a fantastic lunch.  It was the perfect summer meal for a gathering of ladies.  And she swore it was easy!  If you're having friends over anytime in the near future, I highly recommend this menu. 


Jeanne uses Ina Garten's recipe for panzanella (from the Barefoot Contessa Parties! cookbook), which is an Italian salad of vegetables with chunks of browned bread, tossed with a vinaigrette.  (Jeanne recommends skipping the capers, and says to be careful not to burn the bread.)  It's a great summertime side.   

hello, strawberries! you were missed. 

Fruit Salad
We had blueberries, strawberries, and bananas tossed together.  It was simple and delicious.

Chicken Salad Sandwiches on Croissants
These were made Trader Joe's chicken salad and croissants.  Even though they weren't super fancy, they tasted awesome and so much better than an everyday turkey on wheat.   

Pair, of course, with Diet Cokes and Skinnygirl margaritas.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Paris in the Park

The showing is free and starts at 7:30, so bring your wine and blankets out early and stake out some space.  Prepare to be wowed.
I'll be there with some ladyfriends, having my mind blown.  Isn't ballet amazing?  
Every once in a while I end up blocking traffic on the sidewalk at the corner of State and Randolph because I'm staring up at the ballerinas practicing at the Joffrey (you can see them from the street!).   

Glitter nail polish: yea or nay?

A silly topic to start the day:

So, I'm thirty.  I'm a lawyer.  I also kind of enjoy a glittery nail polish every now and then.

My brain tells me that this is not a good thing, but my eyes typically betray me when it comes to sparkly things.  (And it's economical!  Glitter is an excellent chip-concealing device.)

I try not to wear it to work, because "glitter nail polish" sort of screams "Elle Woods, attorney."  I also worry that the appropriate age for glitter-wearing is somewhere (far) south of thirty.  But sometimes, it's just fun, isn't it?

What say you, readers?  Harmless fun, or best left to those who still have a prom in their futures?

PS: five gold glitter polishes, and tips for getting your glitter off (it's harder than one would think!).

(Image via This is Glamorous.)

Monday, June 25, 2012

I'm . . . breezy.*

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Hi everyone!  Hope you had a good weekend.  Much of mine was spent outside, enjoying the sunshine.  But every time I went to get dressed the last two days, I found myself wishing for an easy-breezy white shirt to throw on with bright shorts or white jeans.  Likely because I of course own no such thing.  Here are a couple of white summer shirts that would do nicely.

Joie Balsa Sleeveless Two Pocket Top, $128.
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Joe Fresh white eyelet shell, $39.  (The bad news: Joe Fresh doesn't have e-commerce just yet.  So this is probably only available to NYC-living readers.  The good news: when I was in NYC in May, they told me that they are looking at other locations, including Chicago.  So keep on the lookout!)  You can find a similar top in red here, and a similar white top here.

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Reiss Beth Technique Top, $240.  (Expensive, but the detail on this top is really beautiful.)
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American Apparel Wedge Shoulder Chiffon Blouse, $48.
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Miss Selfridge White Broderie Tie Top,$50.
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Madewell Paper Punch Tank, $38.
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Joie Felix Top, $188.
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Gap Pure Racerback Tank, $24.
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Topshop Basic Peplum Top, $32.
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Anthropologie Ruffled Racerback, $78.
Reiss Ramona Contrast Back T-Shirt, $150.  The swiss dots on this are so pretty.
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Edited at 11:45 to add: I almost forgot (well, I suppose I did in fact forget) to include this little tip, which I hope spillers like me will appreciate!  My friend who is a new mom and her mother-in-law shared this handy piece of advice with me last night: Dreft, the laundry detergent that people use for baby clothes, apparently makes a great stain spray that removes everything.  Good to know for your summer whites!  I'll be ordering mine shortly.

* In case it wasn't immediately obvious to you (i.e., you've moved on from the late-nineties), the title of this post derives from this Friends episode.

(Top image via Habitually Chic.)
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