Wednesday, August 26, 2015

NASHVILLE SCENES

rainy flight out of BOS
hillsboro village
one thing Nashville and I can agree on
reunited at the Grand Ole Opry!
farmer's market
farmer's market--please note the attractive veggie vendor
broadway a.k.a nashvegas
cowboy boots galore
nashvegas
the Parthenon (the nashville version)
This past weekend my college friends and I reunited, after three looong months since graduation, in Nashville for a quick 48-hour whirlwind trip. Ever since traveling to different cities on the weekends while I was in Europe, I think I've mastered the art of squeezing all things cultural and fun in 48 hours or less when visiting a new place. Luckily, Nashville isn't that big. And, to be honest, there's not a whole lot to see in terms of tourist-y things. Good food, drinks and friends were the main focus of the trip, which I am not complaining about.

When we weren't sipping on moonshine margaritas and noshing on pulled pork (don't worry, a round-up of Nashville restaurants and favorite dishes is in the works), we spent the majority of our days exploring the farmer's markets, seeing the Grand Ole Opry and the Parthenon, and poking through the little boutiques around Vanderbilt. Here's a list of Nashville must-sees that can be done in 48 hours or less:
  • Hillsboro Village - a little downtown street near Vanderbilt that's home to a line of boutiques, cafes and a famous pancake joint, The Pancake Pantry.
    • Boutiques: 
      • Tennessee Chic (where I found the "What doesn't kill you makes you blonder" quote) - a bright and cheerful shop with decorative homemade quotes lining the walls and colorful clothing.
      • Pangaea - embrace your inner hippie/bohemian side with this boutique's offering of eclectic jewelry, clothing, folk art, felt hats and home goods.
      • Native Nomad - a more upscale boutique that features local casual and contemporary designer clothing and accessories. Think neutral colors, locally-made delicate jewelry, modern apparel with a nomadic flair.
  • Grand Ole Opry - the most famous country music venue; however, the building shown above in the group photo is actually not the historical version. We made that mistake and took an Uber all the way there to a strip mall! The original, called the Ryman, is just downtown off of Broadway.
  • Farmer's Markets - one for food and one for vintage goods.
    • Nashville Farmer's Market - a food and flower market that sells locally-sourced produce and baked goods. The Market House also has 16 restaurant vendors that serve BBQ, pizza, ice cream, Asian and Mexican cuisine. It's truly a food-lover's paradise.
    • Fairgrounds Flea Market - a goldmine of vintage goods, including that amazing leather jacket in my photo above. We're talking antique records, silverware, art and other trinkets. It's definitely worth wandering through but it is hot in the sun. Pick up a freshly-squeezed lemonade as you explore.
  • Broadway - the main strip of downtown Nashville that's crawling with bachelor/bachelorette parties, Pedal Taverns and Party Barges. At all hours, you can walk down Broadway and hear live country bands performing in multilevel bars with happy hours specials everywhere. There's a reason why they call it Nashvegas.
  • Parthenon - a full-scale replica of the actual Parthenon in Greece that was originally built for the Tennessee Centennial Exposition in 1897. Located in Centennial Park, the monument is pretty to look at, especially while sitting by the pond nearby. In other words, this makes a good scenic rest area.
Though the days are packed, and I'm sure we didn't get to everything, especially the local spots, I think we were able to fully experience Nashville. I must say, I don't think I've ever seen so many bachelorette parties, colorful clothing, rhinestones and blondes in one place. Needless to say, I put aside my dislike for country music and embraced the Southern hospitality. 
Stay tuned for a recap of the other version of Southern hospitality:
moonshine & BBQ.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

SHAKE THAT TASSEL TASSEL

SHAKE THAT TASSEL TASSEL
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One of my favorite summer trends that will take us straight into fall is tassel accessories. Whether featured on a long beaded necklace or used as a statement earring to frame the face, these colorful fringe additions will create movement for a fun, effortless look. This trend has cool, beach-y surfer girl vibes written all over it...

Yes, they feel a bit bohemian, especially when dangling from a wooden beaded necklace (pair one with your favorite bikini and cut-offs and hellooo beach chic). BUT the tassel trend can also be worn by the sophisticated (or beach-less) folk. For those who aren't so keen on bright colors and beads, try a leather tassel statement necklace or earrings for an edgier and more muted look to be paired with a tailored blazer or motorcycle jacket. Or, opt for small, delicate tassels in either silver or gold with a touch of color to accessorize a basic tee or sweater.

Despite tassel accessories' casual feel, the price points on these pieces can get pretty steep. Luckily, there are a bunch of Etsy shops selling them for reasonable prices, such as Bright New Penny, TTassel and Erro Studios. If you're willing to pay a higher price to make a statement, Bauble Bar and Gold & Gray have impressive selections of tassel necklaces and earrings from brightly-colored beads to subtle fringe.

Ready to shake your tassel tassel?
I know I am.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

BEACH-Y BLUES

Dress: H&M (similar) | Hat: Roxy (similar)

Hello again! It's been way too long since I've last posted. In the last few months I've graduated college, started working full-time at my current job, moved to a new apartment and occasionally gone to the beach in between. Though there's been a lot  of change, I'm ready to come back here full-swing, starting with some beach-y blues. Yes, it's nearing the end of swimwear season, but luckily that means SALES. Time to stock up on white bathing suit tops (why must they get worn out so easilyyy), coverups and bottoms. Victoria's Secret, Nordstrom and Target all have good deals right now, so get shopping--after hitting the beach, duh.

No easy, breezy beach look is complete without a good cover-up. Though I love a good pair of cut-offs and a tank, sometimes it's just way too hot for even that much clothing. I like to stick to light dresses or long tops. Light and flowy fabrics are key. Add a floppy sun hat for a bit of drama and glam, and you'll be turning heads on the sand. For beach cover-up inspo, check out my fave sundresses below!
What's your go-to beach outfit?

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