Monday, July 30, 2012

Pillow Talk

I had a really tough time finding fun throw pillows for my bedroom this past year. In fact, I had such a hard time, that I still don't have any! My bedding is gray, and I just can't decide if I want to stick with serene colors or throw on a bunch of brights! I just discovered that one of my favorite home decor/organization bloggers, Arianna Belle, makes and sells some really pretty ones on her online store here.

Both the geometric and abstract shapes look like they'd be fun to mix and match! They're a little pricey for being college apartment bedroom pieces, but looking at them has definitely gotten my brain back on track as to what I'm looking for. The gray one here is really pretty, but I think I'll need a little more color than that... we'll see what I can find when I get back to America!


Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Product Placement: Monogrammed Glassware

I celebrated the big 2-1 this Sunday, and while this is not a "big deal birthday" in Italy, we still managed to make it feel special! It got me thinking about my lack of appropriate stemware for alcoholic beverages. My options are down to my Tervis Tumbler, my blue plastic Target cups, and my various coffee mugs -- nothing conducive to inviting anyone over... without judgment anyway.

With my love of all things monogram, it's no wonder why I find these are so attractive!

Much better than my current stock! Get these and many more here!


Also -- summer always seems to fly by once my birthday has come and gone! Where has time gone?? Hope everyone is savoring their summers!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Blogger Highlight: Sarah of Classy Girls Wear Pearls

I love finding new blogs. Blogs have made exploring all kinds of styles so much easier, and they're mostly written by "normal people" rather than "fashion people". I like to think I have pretty good personal style, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't get any inspiration from bloggers. I started reading blogs during my freshman year of college, and it's been fascinating to watch them evolve into small businesses. Of course, having new blog reading material is dangerous during the school year because homework tends to be ignored for the sake of going through as many posts as I can in one sitting!

Last weekend, I stumbled across Sarah's blog Classy Girls Wear Pearls (so true!) and have been reading it off and on ever since. She is completely committed to all things nautical, Lilly, J. Crew, and just overall preppy, and I love it! I also admire how she isn't just "textbook preppy" -- she keeps it looking fresh and trendy!

I don't know about you, but I'm ready to hop on a sailboat decked out in some sort of anchor-patterned ensemble!


All photos are from Classy Girls Wear Pearls

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Product Placement: Summer Party Essentials!

Summertime has always screamed backyard parties to me. I love having fun meals and drinks outside as the sun goes down and the temperature starts to drop. Add family and friends and some great music, and you've got some of my favorite summertime memories!

And, of course, one of the most fun parts about throwing any party is setting up beforehand! Bright colors, bold shapes -- all the stops really must be pulled out for summer events! Any of these would add wonderful (and durable!) pops of color to all occasions!


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Beat the Heat

It's hot. I mean -- it's HOT hot. It's hot here in Italy (and Italians don't do AC... yikes!). It's hot back at home (Raleigh, NC for me), and I think everybody is in need of some good indoor things to do when the sun is just too much. At times when we're not needed to do any work and the heat is at its peak, my friend and I have taken up reading aloud to each other with all of the lights off and the fan on high in our bedroom. It's actually turned out to be quite fun -- like a little slumber party in the middle of the day! Here are some other things that I might be doing indoors if I had access to my craft supplies at home!

{painting flower pots!}

{making A-frame tents with kids I babysit}

{doodling on plates and cups with porcelain markers and baking them for 30 minutes in a conventional oven}

{making a wine cork board -- and having fun collecting the corks!}

{painting cute totes using doilies as stencils}

{sewing ruffles on my duvet to make Anthropologie-inspired bedding}

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

I hope everybody is staying cool! And appreciate your iced drinks! Ice is another thing that isn't very common in Europe, and I am finding myself missing it a lot!


Monday, July 9, 2012

This Past Week...

Time is a funny thing sometimes. Last time I came to Italy, it went by in the blink of a eye. This summer, I feel like it's going by quickly, and yet, I feel like I've been here for a really long time. I'm not sure if that makes much sense, but I guess my point is that I can't believe 2/3 of my summer is already over! We have a little bit more free time this month, so I'm really looking forward to doing some more travel! Here are some of the recent happenings on this side of the world!

 {starting the day off right}

 {a room with a view}

 {some local entertainment}
 {a visit to a medieval town...}

 {...with a beautiful view}

  {guiding a day trip to Florence...}

 {...where we could get our favorite gelato}

{the beautiful Tuscan countryside that makes runs to counteract the above gelato much more enjoyable!}

Hope you all are having a fabulous start to your July!


Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy Fourth of July!

July 4th has always been my favorite of the smaller holidays! There is just something about running around outside barefoot, sweaty, and completely decked out in red, white, and blue that screams summer to me! We always made a big deal of it when I was little with a big family get-together, homemade mint chocolate chip ice cream, and backyard fireworks. When I got older, I spent seven summers at camp where the Fourth included camp-wide themed games, two cookouts, a parade, cabin skits, and a professional fireworks show. The past couple of years have been more relaxed. My sister now goes to camp, so my mom and I have been revisiting our old Fourth traditions.  (Most of these traditions being food-related!)

Being in Italy this summer, I obviously haven't felt the "July 4th spirit", and I actually miss it! However, there is a pub in town that serves American hamburgers and fries (it's Irish though... go figure!), so we are going to don our best red, white, and blue ensembles and show these Italians some American pride!

So be you at home, the beach, or out of the country -- Happy Happy Happy Independence Day!