Dolce and Gabriella

Little thoughts from the Big Apple


First day

Well chickadees, it’s finally here.

I’ve bid goodbye to break for good. Back to the grind. I’m looking for the silver linings:

Dark cloud: I woke up at 7 a.m. today.

Silver lining: somehow, I still got almost eight hours of sleep. And I don’t have to be on campus until 10 tomorrow, so I’ll survive at least until Wednesday.

Dark cloud: I’m in twenty units of classes this semester. I was in the art building today from 9 to 5 with exactly zero breaks.

Silver lining: those twenty units are pretty interesting. Design classes, journalism, art theory…it’s all pretty cool. Fingers crossed I can manage it.

Dark cloud: I was peer-pressured into wearing something other than yoga pants today.

Silver lining: at least it was my favorite pair of shorts.

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Hand-me-down shorts from best friend’s mom, J. Crew Factory shirt, thrifted IIIBeca by Joy Gryson bag, Sam Edelman “Sabrina” wedges, J. Crew Factory sunglasses

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Savoring the end-of-summer pedicure I treated myself to last week. This shade of purple reminds me of a pair of beloved clogs I had as a kid–instant mood boost. And the Sabrina wedges are super comfortable…highly recommend for an affordable, versatile sandal with a relatively low heel.

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In love with my Everlane backpack in Sand.

If you too went back to school today, my condolences. Labor Day can’t come soon enough. But we might as well enjoy the week; here’s a video to put you in the right mindset for Day 2.


What’d you wear on your first day?


Accomplishing Goals

My dirty little secret: I’m a class-A procrastinator.

Since I am both ambitious and maniacally organized, you wouldn’t think I have a problem getting work done. But I do, big-time. For instance, I sat down to write this post two hours ago. Since then, I’ve watched four video tutorials on making beach waves with a curling wand and chatted with half a dozen friends on Facebook. I responded to a backlog of emails and voicemails I’ve been letting pile up and folded my laundry. I’ve done everything I can think of to avoid writing this post.

Whenever I have a creative deadline on the horizon, I feel a burst of palpable anxiety writhing in the center of my chest. I do everything I can to avoid confronting that anxiety. So whatever I end up making–even if it’s really good–I know that it’s not as good as it could have been, had I devoted the amount of time to it that I originally intended to.

When I started this blog in June, I told my friend Sonya that I was afraid I couldn’t motivate myself to produce the content I know I’m capable of. She, an accomplished artist who’s encountered her own share of creative struggles, recommended a book called The War of Art by Steven Pressfield.

I immediately ordered it on Amazon and finally got around to reading it last week. It’s a quick read–I finished in about three hours–and so worth it for anyone who’s sick of getting in the way of their own achievement. Every sentence of Part One, I was nodding along, thinking, “Finally, someone who understands!” and then, “Wait–I’m not the only one?”

@valeriewatersInstagram, @valeriewaters.

Not by a long shot. According to Pressfield, the struggle against what he calls “Resistance” is universal. Resistance is a villainous feature of the human psyche that works to prevent us from doing the things that will bring us good. When we think about how we should really get started on some task–me writing this blog post, for instance–Resistance does everything it can to keep us from beginning it.

Pressfield personifies Resistance because it has a mind of its own. It comes entirely from our own subconscious, yet most of us don’t have a say in when our Resistance manifests, or how. You can feel Resistance as fear or anxiety, like I do when I think about an approaching creative deadline. It frequently comes across as the desire to procrastinate. It feeds us valid-sounding rationalizations for why beginning an activity is a bad idea, or at least is bad right now. (Hint–if Resistance says that today about something, it’ll also say it tomorrow).

Resistance doesn’t limit itself to artists and writers–it flares up in the presence of “any activity that rejects immediate gratification in favor of long-term growth, health, or integrity.” Resistance is that familiar voice in your head saying, “This really isn’t a good time to take that trip to Europe. I’ll do it next year,” or, “I’ll skip the gym today. One day can’t hurt anything.” The more important the activity is to our self-improvement, the more Resistance we encounter during it.

Luckily, this means that we can use Resistance as a “compass.” The more Resistance you feel toward doing an activity, the more positive and powerful that activity probably is. Resistance should be a sign to do more, not less.

The first step to overcoming Resistance is recognizing it in yourself. When you’re aware of it, you can fight it. The next step is to sit down and get to work (or book a plane ticket, or step onto the treadmill). Your Resistance will lessen the second you start. The only way to get through Resistance is to push through. It doesn’t matter how good what you’re doing is, only that you’re in the process of doing it. Nike knows what I’m talking about.

4393967665_ab91fb4a4e_zJhong Dizon, Flickr, Creative Commons. 

To achieve something big in spite of Resistance, you have to do what Pressfield calls “going pro.” You have to treat the activity like it’s a job. If you were getting paid by somebody else to do it, would you be taking it more seriously? Probably.

Pros go to work every day. To be a pro, you have to work on your goal every day too, or at least on a rigorously kept schedule. Again, it matters much less how much you accomplish in these work sessions and more that you’re putting in the time. Each day that you write another page of your book or log another mile at the gym, you’ve beaten Resistance–eventually, those little victories will add up to major results. Pressfield stresses that you’ve got to commit to your goal over the long haul. Amateurs work for a short time with an intensity that they cannot sustain long-term; pros work in realistic increments that will give them what they want in time. A big goal “is the Iditarod, not the sixty-yard dash.”

I’m well-acquainted with my Resistance; I feel it all the time. In fact, today there are several activities I would like to do, and would get satisfaction from doing, but am probably not going to do. I love yoga, but getting to the studio is a haul and I’m always totally wiped by the end of a two-hour vinyasa class. I downloaded this app I’ve been wanting to play around with and post on the blog, but to input the information I’d need to use it would require a few hours of work and I’m like, eh. Not today.

But you know what I’m now realizing? I’ve said those excuses to myself every day this summer. School starts next week and I never got around to either of them. I did plenty of other great stuff, so I’m not devastated, but I would have enjoyed both activities. If I could do it over having read The War of Art, I’d hit the 30-minute beginner yoga class in the mornings instead of telling myself it was vinyasa or bust; I’d put ten minutes each night into working on the app, and by now I’d have it done. If I’d faced my Resistance, even in tiny increments, I’d be a more flexible and tech-savvy girl today.

As fall approaches, I challenge you to do what I’m doing today: think about what Resistance has stopped you from doing in the past and what it’s stopping you from doing now. Do you feel guilty for or anxious about avoiding some activity? Figure out what the first baby step is toward your goal, take a deep breath, and get ‘er done. The only way to feel relief from those icky Resistance feelings is moving forward. I’m going to: write an email I’ve been procrastinating on big-time, order my textbooks for a difficult class that starts Monday, and sign up for yoga at the USC gym.

There are other insights in the book that apply more specifically to creatives–writers, artists, etc–who deal with Resistance when they sit down to make their stuff. If this is you, whether you’re a designer, blogger, art student, whatever, I really recommend spending a few hours ingesting what Pressfield says about the way in which we should be treating our creative work. From an art student’s perspective, his comments on production, critique and ownership of work are really helpful. Maybe I’ll even do a second post on it sometime–what do you guys think?

I want to know in the comments: what are you feeling Resistance on right now and how do you combat it?



Make the Most Bad-Ass Bomb-Dot-Com Jean Cutoffs of Your LIFE

Can you tell from the title that I’m excited about today’s topic? It’s because I have a jorts problem.

tobias 1Image from the Arrested Development wikia page

I own an embarrassingly large number of jean shorts. At least a dozen pairs. I can kind of halfway justify it because of where I live, except that I owned most of them before I ever got here. There’s something about a pair of soft, broken-in jean cutoffs that makes me so happy. Actually, all denim makes me happy. I own the WordPress and Tumblr handle “denimfetish” and seriously considered it for this blog. See more about my denim problem here.

I think I’ve bought two pairs of jean shorts in my life. All the others, I’ve made myself from jeans I’ve found at garage sales and thrift stores. I’ve ruined many a pair trying to cut them super-short-but-not-too-short, frayed-but-not-too-frayed. Luckily, I’ve developed a technique that returns custom-fit, absolutely perfect shorts every time. And it couldn’t be simpler. (Warning–lots of pictures in this one!)

how to make jean shorts

If you’d rather do this thang on your phone, I made a great Steller story with the same content.

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First, you’ll need an old pair of jeans. I went to Goodwill and found a pair with a half-off tag for $3. Try to pick something non-stretchy with a high cotton content–it’s much more difficult to distress polyester and spandex. Then, grab scissors, a marker, a ruler, a utility knife and a piece of cardboard.

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Chop off the legs of the jeans, leaving the shorts 1.5-2″ longer than you’d like to wear them. Then put the jeans on.

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Fold the hem of the shorts up. Look in the mirror and make sure that with the fold, the shorts are the exact length and cut you want. Play around with it…try folding at different lengths and angles and see what’s most flattering. On many people, shorts that slant subtly upward toward the outside of the leg look best.

Make sure they’re the right length. I like my shorts pretty short, but they have to cover the necessary stuff.

tobias 3From WiffleGif.

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Once you’re happy with how the shorts look, get your marker. With one hand, pinch the fold you just made; with the other, run your marker along the edge of the fold. You want to make a line that traces exactly where you’ve folded the fabric. Go all the way around both legs.

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For a more precise line, you could pin the fold, take the shorts off and press the crease with an iron. I’m too lazy for that.

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Take the shorts off, turn them inside out and cut along the line you just made. Don’t cut the front and back of the shorts together–the whole point of this method is making a more flattering asymmetrical cut.

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Et voila! A pair of Daisy Dukes custom-made for your booty.

Now let’s distress them!

I used to painstakingly fray my shorts by pulling out individual threads with a seam ripper. It was tedious beyond belief. Luckily, I found a great alternate method in a video on the Free People blog. Basically, it involves cutting slits in the denim with a knife, creating narrow strips that fray and degrade with wear.

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First, we’ll fray the hem. Insert your cardboard into the leg opening to protect the fabric on the other side. Start your cuts a half inch up the legs of your shorts, using the ruler to make them straight-ish. The slits don’t have to be evenly spaced or run the entire width of the leg; you’re just creating lots of narrow strips at the bottom of the shorts.

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Now let’s make some natural-looking distress marks on the jeans. Cut some little slits at the top of the pockets, front and back, where your hand would rub against if you reached into the pocket over and over. Sometimes I also make little slits on the belt loops and the bottoms of the back pockets.

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To “break in” the front of the shorts, drag your blade across the denim until little pulls and holes start to form. Lightly glide the blade over the fabric with just enough pressure to snag the top threads. Don’t overdo it; the holes will get bigger in the wash.

Then, throw the jeans in the laundry. I put them in for the longest, heaviest duty cycle and then let them tumble in the dryer for at least half an hour.

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Just one wash later, you’ve got a perfectly distressed pair of jean shorts. And they only get better with time and more washes.

Happy chopping!

Any other jorts junkies out there? I want to hear your best tips!

Linked up with: Style Elixir, Walking in Memphis in High Heels


Big Sur

So this week was incredible.

My mom and I took a trip up the California coast from LA to Monterey. For about seventy-five miles north of San Luis Obispo, the Pacific Coast Highway is basically cut into the edge of the Santa Lucia mountains. The landscape couldn’t be more dramatic; the jagged, rocky mountain peaks plunge directly into the Pacific Ocean.

As you drive, you feel as though your car is teetering on the edge of a cliff. At points, it is. The experience is terrifying, but also incredibly exhilarating.

For most of our trip, the road was covered in fog. It was mystical and beyond beautiful and hard to put into words. Suffice it to say that it’s a drive everyone needs to make at least once in their lifetime.

Processed with VSCOcam with m5 presetChanneling my inner Mary-Kate Olsen in a sweater wrap by Comme (purchased at Avanti in SLO) and maxidress by Juicy Couture (similar at Nordstrom)

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Processed with VSCOcam with m5 presetIs this view not straight out of a fairy tale?

Processed with VSCOcam with m5 presetAnd then the sun came out.

The trip was definitely a spiritual experience for me–I’ve never felt more in awe of our beautiful planet. I can’t wait to go back and do it again–next time, I want to go farther north past San Francisco and into the redwoods.

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For more photos and a backstory, view my Steller on our trip.

What’s the most beautiful place you’ve ever been?


Quick fixes

Do you have certain combinations that you turn to again and again when getting dressed? I definitely do. My go-to errand-running outfit is a men’s sweatshirt (likely stolen from my man, otherwise thrifted) paired with cutoffs and some sandals. Did I mention I took these photos by duct taping my iPhone to the wall? Girl needs a tripod.

photo2Hanes sweatshirt, Forever 21 cutoffs (similar here), Blowfish sandals (similar here), thrifted IIIBeca West Broadway satchel (on sale at Gilt right now)

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Half up/half down is the style I turn to when I haven’t brushed my hair in a while. I gather hair from the front into a little ponytail, twist the ponytail a couple times, and secure the twist with a bobby pin.

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This time I also threw in three colored bobby pins. I’ve seen them all over Pinterest lately and decided to make my own by painting the flat side of bobby pins with nail polish–this is Tart Deco by Essie.

It took me approximately eight minutes total to get ready today. I love having go-to pieces and beauty tricks that make it easy to get out the door. What are your five-minute fixes?

Linked up with Style Elixir


The Freshman Fifteen…Things You Didn’t Know You’ll Need

Alright chickadees, I’m back with a vengeance. The swelling’s reducing, the headache’s retreating…a few more days and I’ll be able to put this whole wisdom teeth thing behind me. It’s been one rough ride. From what I hear, getting your wisdom teeth out isn’t usually this bad–I just had a series of bad reactions to first the anesthesia and then the painkillers. If anyone has extractions of their own coming up, my biggest tip is to take Dramamine (the motion sickness drug) with your painkillers. I wish someone had told me that sooner, because I had a couple awfully woozy, nauseous days.

So. Thank goodness that’s almost over. Back to regularly scheduled programming:

A lot of my friends are heading off to college for the first time in a couple weeks, and they’re understandably freaking out. This time last year, I was in Total Panic List Mode. I made pages and pages of lists with the idea that if I could plan the move to college down to a tee, I could take the fear and overwhelm out of the transition. Not so; fear and overwhelm are a completely necessary and unavoidable part of going to college. Looking back at it, they’re actually part of the fun. I over-planned, overpacked, and definitely over-stressed.

On the plus side, I had everything I needed. There are some weird, silly things that you might think are overkill to pack, but I give you my word: at some point in the year you’ll be thanking your lucky stars you threw them in at the last minute. Here’s my list of the fifteen must-haves you didn’t know you needed.

fifteen things freshman

Hey! You should pin me!

1. Water pitcher with filter

Staying hydrated is the #1 easy way to be healthy in college. Drinking lots of water gives you energy, helps with weight management, and boosts your immune system. Unfortunately, water from the drinking fountain doesn’t always taste good…and if you’re drinking a lot of it, you want to know it’s clean. I have this slim pitcher and it’s perfect. It doesn’t take up much room at all, and it makes my water taste so much better.

My suggestion: Brita Slim Water Filter Pitcher, 5-cup, $19.60 on Amazon

2. Bra Balls

Industrial washing machines wreak havoc on delicate lingerie, but you won’t want to hand wash in the dorm bathroom. These are the next best thing–they keep your bras and underwear from being flung around and bent out of shape.

My suggestion: Woolite Bra Wash Bag, $12.99 for two on Amazon

3. A bright desk lamp and extra lightbulbs

I’m sure you already got a desk lamp. But did you get a lightbulb that’s bright enough to study under? There will be plenty of nights your roommate wants to go to bed before you, leaving your desk lamp as the only source of light in the room. Make sure it’s not too dim, or you’ll get headaches squinting at your history reading. Don’t forget to bring a couple spare bulbs in case yours burns out.

My suggestion: KVART Work Lamp, $12.99 at IKEA

4. A second pair of sheets

Someone will cry/vomit/bleed/track mud onto your bed at the least opportune time. If you bring a second pair of sheets–even an inexpensive Target set or a $1 garage sale find–you’ll be able to swap out your linens without doing laundry.

My suggestion: Xhilaration Sheet Set, $12.58 at Target

5. Sewing Kit

Even if you don’t have a wardrobe malfunction–a torn hem or a popped button–someone else will. They’ll walk down the hall asking, “Who has a needle and thread?” and you’ll get to be the cool kid who says, “I do!” You can pick up mini sewing kits in hotel bathrooms for free sometimes. I got mine at a garage sale for a quarter.

My suggestion: look around and get something cheap. Or try the Smooth Trip Unisex Compact Travel Sewing Kit, $6.29 on Amazon.

6. Dry shampoo

Face it: however frequently you want to wash your hair, you’re not going to hit that mark. There are days when you’ll think, “UGH–I need to shower. I can’t believe I didn’t shower.” And then you know what you’ll do that night? You won’t shower. Or you’ll shower, but you won’t have enough time to wash/brush/dry your hair. Take it from someone who knows.

Dry shampoo is my best friend. It soaks up the oil in your hair, making it look bouncy and freshly washed. The best thing about the brand I use is that you can’t overdo it–I’ve used dry shampoo three days in a row before. Am I proud? No, but it worked. Wait til Psst! is on sale and stock up.

My suggestion: Psssssst! Instant Dry Shampoo, $8.73 on Amazon

 7. Emergen-C or Airborne

Living in a dorm is like going to preschool: germs are everywhere and there’s no way to avoid getting exposed. Unless you have Superman’s immune system (and I certainly don’t), you’ll eventually get at least a little of whatever’s going around. And a LOT will go around: strep, mono, and the flu passed through my floor a few times each last year. I protected myself as best I could by drinking Emergen-C packets a few times a day as soon as I suspected I was getting sick. Even if you can’t prevent yourself from getting sick, you can often postpone it for a few days or shorten the illness’s duration.

My suggestion: Emergen-C Super Orange 30-count, $13.05 on Amazon

8. An overnight bag and cosmetics case

At some point, you’ll hopefully go on a short trip and will have to pack a couple days’ worth of clothes. Don’t be the kid who packs her stuff in a Walgreens bag (ahem.)

My suggestion: The Twill Weekender, $95, and The Twill Dopp Kit, $35 at Everlane

9. Granola bars

On the days you oversleep and can’t make it to the dining hall for breakfast (um, every day for me), protein-filled granola bars are much healthier and more cost-effective than a muffin from the coffee shop. I order mine in bulk on Amazon.

My suggestion: White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Clif Bars, $13.99 for 12 on Amazon

10. A sleep mask

Some nights, your roommate will want to go to bed before you; others, you’ll be the one crashing early. Don’t let her study habits get in the way of your beauty sleep. I have a plain jane fabric mask, but my roommate has this one with molded cups to protect her eyelashes. It’s so handy.

My suggestion: Dream Essentials Sweet Dreams Contoured Sleep Mask, $9.95 on Amazon

11. Comfortable headphones

You’ve heard you need headphones to block out the noise in your dorm or library…but have you heard how much you’ll be wearing them? All. The time. When you’re constantly surrounded by other people, there’s no such thing as a no-distraction environment. Make sure the set you’ve picked out still feels good into hour three (or six, if you’re a design student chained to your laptop.) Mine are excellent and worth the splurge, considering I wear them for about 25% of my life. They fit comfortably over my ears, which I prefer to the on-ear designs–they give me headaches–and they’re lined with a fuzzy material that doesn’t get sticky or sweaty.

My suggestion: Incase Sonic Over-Ear Headphones, $89.99 on Amazon

12. A plant

Everyone agrees: plants are great for your health. They clean the air, they lift the spirits, and above all, caring for a little-bitty living thing is a great stress reducer. Don’t have a green thumb? Don’t worry. Plenty of options like succulents and cacti require very little care. You can pick up a potted plant (or four) at Trader Joe’s for just a few dollars.

My suggestion: Head to your local stores and check out the options! Trader Joe’s, the Home Depot, IKEA and most grocery stores have decent selections. Image from Bliss Bloom Blog.

13. Extension cords and power strips

My dorm had exactly two power outlets, one on each side. I had a lot more than two things to plug into mine, so I used a system of surge protectors and extension cords to plug in my laptop, phone, lamps, and hair dryer.

My suggestions: Tripp Lite Surge Protector, $8.49 on Amazon, and Axis 3 Outlet White Indoor Extension Cord, 6 Feet, $4.99 on Amazon

14. A big ass bottle of hand sanitizer

Refer to #7: germs are everywhere on a college campus. Protect yourself how you can by keeping your hands clean–put the sanitizer on your dresser and make a habit of using it every time you come in your room. Buying a big bottle like this is a lot more economical than buying a dozen little bottles. You can refill your little bottles from the big bottle.

My suggestion: up & up Hand Sanitizer, $4.59 for 32 oz. at Target

15. A fun random plaything

Break the ice in your dorm by initiating an activity that everyone loves. Think classics: no one can resist a game of Cards Against Humanity or a casual Frisbee toss. Some of my favorite memories of my first year are sitting around in my dorm room with friends playing Taboo, Twister and Apples to Apples.

My suggestions: Cards Against Humanity, $25.00 on Amazon, and Discraft 175 gram Ultra Star Sport Disc, $8.69 on Amazon


So, college students (and graduates): what’d I miss? What couldn’t you have lived without your freshman year?


All images are from the web store I linked to in the item’s description (except for the potted succulent image from Bliss Bloom Blog.


The Liebster Award and Thoughts on Compliments

I’ve been nominated for a Liebster Award for the second time–first by Cindy at Cindy’s Musings and then today by Grace at Style, Art and Grace. I’m thrilled…thank you, ladies! I so enjoy reading both of your blogs. My very favorite part of this blogging thing is meeting other smart, creative bloggers, and participating in the Liebster Award tag is such a cool way to do so.

As far as I can tell, the Liebster Award isn’t a centralized thing. It’s not a regulated award, just an honor passed from blogger to blogger. When you’re nominated, you answer the questions posed by the blogger who nominated you and then yourself nominate another set of bloggers. All the blogs you name are supposed to be on the smaller side, because the idea is to spread Internet love and help other baby blogs grow.


Plus, everyone loves answering questions about themselves. While in the real world this kind of self-indulgence might come off as narcissism, in the blog world it’s just known as self-empowerment. How awesome is that? I think women especially have a hard time doing this, because we’re trained to deflect compliments and downplay our strengths from the start. To hell with that–I say, if you got it, own it. Celebrate it. And celebrate it in others. Your goal for today, ladies: give a genuine compliment to a woman you love and accept one in return. The only thing you’re allowed to say is, “Thank you! I’m flattered.”

I loved reading Grace and Cindy’s answers and am unashamedly excited to answer my own set of questions (I’m using Grace’s.) Here we go!

1. If someone gave you unlimited funds right now to re-decorate your home or re-vamp your wardrobe, which would you choose?

Probably my home, which is almost empty at the moment since my mom and I moved in not long ago and are only slowly acquiring furniture. We left most things in Wisconsin when we moved since we knew we’d be in a much smaller house here in LA. We love to go shopping at garage sales and flea markets for unique pieces, so we’re slowly assembling a collection of stuff we both love. For my room, I’m currently trying to decide between Benjamin Moore’s Hale Navy and Newburyport Blue for an accent wall with whites and creams everywhere else.

2. What is the one fashion accessory you could never give up?

Sunglasses…being in the bright sun without them gives me a headache, so I never leave the house here without a pair! What’s sad is I always am leaving them places. I had one pair from Madewell that I adored (these in tortoise) and somehow lost at the beginning of my freshman year…still so devastated that I’ve only let myself buy Forever 21 and H&M pairs since.

3. If you could travel anywhere in the world right now, where would you go and why?

I’d stay right here in my pretty little pocket of sun 🙂

4. What made you decide to start your blog and what is your favorite thing about blogging?

I’ve always loved reading other blogs and have considered starting my own before, but I’ve never felt like I’ve had something unique or useful to say. Now that I’m in college and doing internships, I have a little more experience to write about. With Dolce & Gabriella, I hope to share what I’m learning and generate some of the great content and conversation that I’ve observed on the blogosphere for so long.

5. You’re running late getting ready in the morning and have to decide between doing your hair or your makeup. Which do you decide to do?

Makeup. Bed head is a look I can pull off; pimple-covered face is not.

6. Do you have one go-to beauty product you couldn’t live without?

The Falsies by Maybelline. I can’t afford department store stuff, so this is the next best thing if you want big volume like I do. The only catch with it is you have to scrape the excess mascara off the brush back into the opening of the bottle before using–the formula works best when there’s a minimal amount on the brush.

7. What is the fall fashion trend you are most looking forward to trying?

I have a great, really simple suede fringed bag I’ve been saving until fringe is back. Judging by Blake Lively’s new Vogue shoot, it’s way back.

8. Who is your style icon and why?

I love Charlotte Gainsbourg’s style…effortless with just a little edge. Oh, what I’d give to be French. 

9. Where is your favorite place to shop when looking for fashion on a smaller budget?

Goodwill! I buy clothes almost exclusively secondhand. I actually wrote a post about my love of Goodwill a few weeks ago.

10. Would you rather shop online or in an actual store?

In-store. The very most important thing to me when choosing clothes is the fit. You can’t assess fit without trying something on, unfortunately. I only order online when there’s free shipping and free returns so the process is risk-free. 

11. Describe your style in one sentence:

“Make it simple, but significant.”–Don Draper


Now for my own questions, I’ll nominate a few blogs that I follow, but this is really an open nomination. If you have a blog and you read my blog, I nominate you! Fill out the questions if you’d like and drop me a note so I can take a look 🙂

1. Fill in the blank: I got 99 problems but _____ ain’t one.

2. You get to/have to take a trip around the world with one other person for a year. Who would you most enjoy/tolerate doing it with and why?

3. What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received?

4. Name the next Kardashian sister. You can choose to continue the “K” dynasty or derail it forever…the power lies in your hands.

5. If it were impossible for you to fail at it, what’s one thing you’d do?

6. If you were to write a coffee table book about something, what would it be about? One idea:


7. What possession does your best friend have that you’d like to steal the most? (FYI: “her boyfriend/girlfriend” is not an acceptable answer.)

8. What was your favorite Disney Channel Original Movie? I liked Life Size.

9. If you could change your name, would you? To what?

10. What’s your most guilty guilty pleasure?

11. Once you’ve made it and you’re filthy rich, what’s one thing you’re never going to do yourself again?


I’m nominating:

1. Carolyn at The Makeup Writeup, who’s not only a fellow Trojan–go SC!–but also a brilliant makeup reviewer and blogging advisor. Special shoutout for teaching me how to use HTML tags in comment boxes.

2. Priya at Perfectly Priya because I love her friendly, witty writing style

3. Jess at Just Jess May for her funny, thoughtful, so relatable posts

4. Maggie at Clothes to Midnight because her photography is gorgeous and her style is always on point

5. Shannon at Clothes and Quotes because her laid-back West Coast style is something I aspire to

6. Haley at Belle Vie because she just did an awesome series on skirts and inspired me to haul all of mine out of the back of my closet


I’m just so happy to be in this blogging world and to have met so many great people already. If you have a baby blog and haven’t dropped me a comment yet, please do today so we can introduce each other–I respond to everything and am all about returning the favor on your blog.