Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Lyon, Part II

The morning after our engagement I woke up and had to check my left ring finger to make sure it wasn't a dream. (The ring was still there, whew!) We had a full day to explore Lyon and made plans to check out the rest of the "old town" including the Roman ruins. First stop was breakfast, where I decided to share our special news with the world via instagram, natch. The weather in Lyon was considerably warmer than I expected, (I was melting in this outfit,) so I opted for my new Zara shorts sans tights. I purchased them the day before our trip and love the high-waisted cut and bow detail. Because Lyon is mostly cobblestone, my black wingtip loafers were a must to explore comfortably. I hate wearing flats, but vacation calls for practicality. If ever visiting Lyon, France, you can't miss taking a walk to La basilique de Notre-Dame de Fourvière. The path that leads up to the church is the best place to get a bird's eye view of the city. The basilica, sitting atop the hill of Fourvière, was built in the late 19th century and is absolutely breathtaking with spectacular ornate mosaics lining the walls and ceilings. It was the perfect place to find a peaceful moment and give thanks for all of the blessings coming our way.
P.S. Today I got some more exciting news in finding out that I've been nominated for Racked Miami's first-ever Best Miami Fashion Blogger Award! Please take two seconds of your time to support me by voting here. Thank you! (The poll closes on Wednesday morning.)
I'm wearing...
Portofino Shirt c/o Express | Shorts by Zara | Quilted Pearl Crossbody by Purificacion Garcia (similar) | Celine Sunglasses | Loafers by Enzo Angiolini (similar) | Jewelry: Autograph Plate Necklace c/o T'Audrey, Screw Cuff by Henri Bendel, Zodiac Cuff c/o Express, Double Pearl Earrings c/o Express


Monday, October 6, 2014

Blush & Black


Welcome to the Swiss countryside! After a beautiful few days in Lyon we arrived in Geneva this past weekend to visit my future sister-in-law. She also recently became engaged, and as you can imagine there has been a lot of wedding talk going on. It’s such an exciting time for us all! We took a drive to visit the famous Cailler Chocolate Factory in Broc, and had the most gorgeous scenic drive through the mountains. Just outside the maison was a quaint little farm with grazing cows, which are used for Cailler’s milk chocolate.
The weather has been a little warmer than we expected but the evenings get chilly, so I brought along my favorite new pink cocoon coat from Express. Just like midi-length skirts last spring, midi coats are dominating this season and I love how feminine and chic this jacket is. I have to take advantage of it during this trip because there are few days to enjoy my fall layers in Miami. What I can layer up on at home are accessories, and now I have some extra bling to add to the mix. (Excuse the newly engaged cliché, but I just can’t stop staring at my ring!) Since we’ll be traveling for nearly two weeks I had to pack light, (a near impossible feat,) and only chose to bring pieces that could work with a variety of outfits. Express is killing it in the accessory department right now; my new libra cuff, pearl earrings, and mini bowler bag have been the perfect versatile options to add polish to all of my looks. What are your go-to accessories when traveling?
I'm wearing...
Pink Cocoon Coat by Express | Sheer Sleeve Essential Shirt by Express | Finders Keepers Skirt via Savvy Girl | Bag: Tiny Textured Bowler by Express | Jewelry: Libra Cuff by Express, Silver ‘Screw You’ Cuff by Henri Bendel, Double Pearl Earrings by Express


This post is sponsored by Express. All opinions are my own.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Lyon is for Lovers (My Engagement Story)

When I spotted this Boohoo pullover with a bright blue capital B on it, I knew it would be the perfect thing to wear on our first day of vacation. Not only was it perfect because it would be my birthday, but Eric’s friends all affectionately call him “Big Blue.” The one thing that I wasn’t counting on was that it would also represent my birthday gift – (engagement) bling! Let me rewind…
En route to our European holiday, neither of us slept much on the overnight flight. We rallied rather than napping when we arrived in Lyon because we were so excited to be here. We took a walk from our hotel to historic Vieux (old) Lyon and came across this beautiful library sitting next to a church. (Pause for outfit photos.) Jetlag was starting to hit, but nothing that a few shots of espresso couldn’t fix. Our room at the Mercure Chateau Perrache conveniently had a Nespresso machine waiting for us which Eric didn’t hesitate to switch on.
Later that evening, he had planned a special birthday dinner at the most celebrated restaurant in Lyon. The three Michelin star Paul Bocuse is an institution for modern French cuisine. Chef Bocuse was awarded the “Chef of the Century” from the Culinary Institute of America in 2011 – one of only four chefs to ever receive such designation. Decadent is the only word I can use to describe that meal. Every bite was so flavorful and rich, it’s hard to pinpoint the one part of the five-courses which was my favorite. As Eric said, no meal after that will ever be the same. And while dinner was divine, we were growing more tired, struggling to stay awake while experiencing a meal few only dream of. Eric’s solution? More espresso. Two more to be exact. At this point I worried, because he rarely drinks coffee, but he was adamant that he needed to stay awake.

The only photo of us from that night. 2 October 2014

I didn’t have any coffee, (I swore it off earlier this year,) but I wouldn’t need any caffeine to keep me awake that night. We arrived back to the Mercure and, while half-asleep, walked up to our room. I didn’t hesitate to throw off my Louboutins and beeline to the bathroom to wash off my makeup. While going through my beauty routine, Eric insisted I help him “close the curtains” and called me into the bedroom. Sitting on the bed was a large Happy Birthday gift bag. He asked me to open my birthday gift, which was a surprise to me since I knew this trip was a gift in itself. As I peeked in the bag I saw a card, and a small jewelry satchel from Briana. Rather than open those two, I kept tearing through the tissue paper. When I got to the bottom of the bag I found a small white box. I immediately opened that box, and found a crimson and gold box inside. Could it be?! As soon as I opened the lid the brightest beam of light flashed me in the eyes as he dropped down on one knee. “Baby, will you marry me?” he asked. After hugs, kisses, and tears, I responded, “of course.”

The morning after. Our first breakfast as fiancées.   



Friday, October 3, 2014

Lashing Out: Why I Quit Mascara


While I openly admit I’m a total beauty junkie, mascara has always been my drug of choice. I just don’t feel “done” without it on. No mascara? Might as well not even bother with the rest of your face. Lush lashes instantly open up your eyes, can camouflage a long sleepless night, and even distract from a devastating pimple. My one issue with the rich black potion is that it takes precious time to apply just right so that your lashes don’t clump or look spidery. One swipe of the wand can be the difference between looking like a doe-eyed angel and a side show act. Over the years I’ve perfected my technique and come across a few elite mascaras, (Benefit “They’re Real” being my reigning champ,) and I was happy, until I heard about Miami’s new lash extension guru at NailBar Midtown. My girlfriends were sporting lashes so real, they were envy inducing – long, full, perfectly curled, and sans mascara! So I obviously had to try it for myself.
The service takes about two hours while the lovely Maria (aka the Lash Guru) expertly adheres individual silk or fox lashes to each of your own lashes. She can create custom looks based on your needs, from extra-full to a sassy cat eye, or just-for-fun pops of color using rainbow hued lashes. I opted for a full cat eye look to offset my slightly droopy eyes. I’ve now been rocking the lashes for over a month and have been receiving non-stop compliments when wearing little to no makeup. Is this real life? Lashes 1 – Mascara 0.

Things to Know
  • A full set of glam lashes by Maria starts at $275.
  • Arrive to your appointment with freshly cleansed skin sans any makeup. If you wear contact lenses you should remove them before the application.
  • The service can take 90 minutes to two hours, during which you’ll be laying down with your eyes shut. It is very relaxing and I usually sleep throughout.
  • Your new lashes will shed along with your own, however they will not damage or cause yours to fall out or break.
  • If you wear a lot of eye makeup you’ll have to switch to oil-free products. Oil breaks down the adhesive and will significantly shorten the life span of the extensions.
  • Mascara is a no-no – but you won’t need it! You can use it on your bottom lashes.
  • Refills are recommended every two and a half to three weeks and run about $95.
If You Go
Call to book your appointment. Availability is limited so plan in advance if you have a special event or trip coming up.

3301 NE 1st Ave, Midtown 4
Miami, FL. 33137
(305) 514-0305
This post is sponsored by NailBar. All opinions are my own.
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