This is a blog written by a 20-something PR professional in the Second City. Follow along as I chronicle my outfits, DIY projects, social events and more. Thanks for stopping by!
Tag Archives: Chicago
Well, this weekend for Steve and I will be quite different than one we recently had in Chicago. We’re taking off for Athens, Ga., to celebrate Steve’s college roommate’s wedding. There won’t be any Bulls players signing autographs there (that we know of, ha). We recently had a blast attending an event at the United Center to help celebrate the launch of American Express Platinum. Chicago was one of many cities around the country where fun events were happening thanks to Amex and Uber. (The companies have teamed up to offer card holders Uber rides.) We received awesome seats to the Bulls game and attended a post-game meet & greet with legend Scottie Pippen! Not to brag, but guests also received VIP treatment throughout the night – from an exclusive entrance with a Platinum carpet and walking away with a signed Scottie Pippen jersey in their gift bags. It was truly a date night to remember, thanks to American Express Platinum!
Of course not every weekend can be filled with a Bulls Hall of Famer. This time, we’ll have to settle for visiting loved ones in the Peach State. 🙂 If you’re looking for things to do this weekend, why don’t you…
- Read how one woman profited off of an unexpected change in flight plans. (Thankfully everything was peaceful.)
- Help plan the next bachelorette party you’re going to in one of the top destination cities. Do you want wild or tame? This survey has them all.
- Take a look at the cutest – and inexpensive – embroidered blouse Roxanne is modeling.
- Reserve your ticket to the Chicago Saved by the Bell popup restaurant. There are less than 50 days left!
- Shop the Victoria Beckham for Target collection. Can you believe there are still options left? I picked up this ruffle hem dress.
It seems like Mondays are starting to have a floral theme. (Remember my DIY bouquets last week?) These photos are from last weekend’s Crowning Event with Allie. I met Allie at a Bitches Who Brunch event last spring (she’s the Chicago editor-in-chief) and have kept up with her on social media since. Lately I started seeing her rocking the most adorable flower crowns, and I was amazed to learn she is making them through her own business, Crowning Event. She offers workshops so others can learn how to make their own crowns, so I signed up immediately with my friend (and former blog partner) Amanda!
Image via Crowning Event
I seem to have suddenly become flower obsessed after my floral design class earlier this week. Just yesterday I came across the most beautiful Instagram full of flower crowns and noticed that the company is in Chicago, and that it’s hosting an event this Sunday! I quickly signed up for a class with Crowning Event to learn how to DIY a flower crown. I can’t wait! Not only will it be fun to get crafty again, I’ll also be well-equipped for festivals and bridal activities this summer. There are still spots if you’re in Chicago and want to join. Bonus: You can get a discount on tickets using code “INSTAGRAM2017.” If flower crowns aren’t your thing, I still have plenty of other ideas. This weekend, why don’t you…
- Update your makeup drawer (I know I need to) with a new mascara, based on great recommendations from Between the Pearls.
- LOL like my fiancé and I did with this article ranking Girl Scout cookies in order of their betchiness.
- Get in that romantic feel with outfit inspo and lace from Every Chic Way.
- Learn why Columbus, Ohio, really isn’t that bad, especially according to this Racked article on the city’s influence in the fashion industry.
- Plan your next vacation (and dream of blue water) with a trip suggestion from Bows & Sequins.
You know how I feel about flowers? They’re lovely ways to add color to your home, but I really don’t know what makes them beautiful together. A few days ago, if you asked me to go to a farmer’s market and put together a bouquet, I’d have been stumped. I wouldn’t know what colors complement each other, which size vases to use with which flowers, etc. That’s why I am still in disbelief that I made three bouquets Monday night in three hours! Granted, I made these in a class that provided me with step-by-step instructions and flowers, but now I’ve walked away with more knowledge from that one night than multiple years of me staring at bouquets in markets. I just had to share my excitement about the Chicago Flower School of Design (and *humblebrag* with photos of these bouquets).
Steve signed me up for the flower school as a Christmas gift. I’m DIYing our wedding flowers (with supervision from a professional), so he thought the class would be good practice for me. And he was right. The School of Flower Design is led by Michael Gaffney, a renowned floral designer who shared plenty of stories from elaborate weddings and catering to the stars. He opened the class explaining that flower design is like cooking. It’s about 10% creativity, and the rest is sticking to a “recipe.” Sure, the flowers or colors in a bouquet might change, but the key elements need to be there for it to be pleasing to the eye. Once he explained it like that, I was better able to follow his directions for the three bouquets we learned that night.
Well it’s back to tights for those of us in the Midwest, but I can’t really complain. Seventy degree weather in February is amazing until you realize why it’s 70 degrees. (Climate change, ya know?) Anyway, I still have some dress/skirt+tight combos I’m looking forward to wearing and sharing. I try my best to stretch out my fall/winter wardrobe into spring, a la here, to avoid feeling the need to purchase new spring clothes. (That didn’t stop me for shopping for my Charleston bachelorette, though. I thought this floral maxi was perfect!) What about you? What’s your cutoff for tights and other winter wear?
By the way, the vest in this post is one that I hesitated to buy at first. Now, I can’t believe I ever had reservations! It’s the third time I’ve shared an outfit with it on the blog, and I’ve worn it countless other times IRL. Although this Express vest is no longer available, I’ve rounded up some similar vests below. I think it’d be worth investing in a lightweight option for spring. Khaki vests just add something to an outfit!
So this little twirl above sums up how I felt about the weekend. Chicagoans are going wild for the 60 degree weather. Even better, it’s supposed to continue through the beginning part of this week. Although Steve and I were inside for a large part of the day Saturday, we still got to enjoy the sun. We walked outside during our lunch break at Pre-Cana (Catholic marriage preparation) and went on an evening jog. On Sunday, we planned brunch and shopping on Milwaukee Ave so we could stroll outside for a better part of the day. Really, it was just such an amazing reminder about what’s to come in a few months!
Since the weather has been warmer, I’ve been mixing clothing from different seasons. I purchased so many skirts last summer that I’m trying to find ways to decrease the cost per wear by pairing them with lightweight sweaters. You might remember this printed Banana Republic skirt from a previous post. I absolutely loved how a jean jacket could dress it down in summer, and now a gray sweater makes it a little more appropriate for this time of year when the temps haven’t risen past 70 degrees yet. (Even if the Chicago palm leaf mural leads you to believe otherwise.)
Oh, and if you’re wondering what Pre-Cana is, which I mentioned above, it’s a requirement for any couples getting married in the Catholic church. Steve and I chose a course in a Chicago suburb because the day-long class fit with our schedule. We had no idea that on Feb. 18 the class would also conflict with one of the nicest days of the winter! Luckily the teacher sensed we were all itching to be outside and let us out a little early. It felt really nice to have spent that important time with Steve, and then even better to end the day with a jog together. It’s something I rarely do with Steve, but who could pass up spending more quality time with the fiancé on a sunny day?
So I warned you all that you’d be seeing more of me in a jean jacket and skirt this fall. We’ve had a few true falls days where I’ve worn layers or pants, but it’s actually still pretty warm out. (It’s supposed to be 81 on Thursday in Chicago!) I figure if I can’t wear full on fall clothes, fall colors and a jean jacket are the next best thing. The crown braid ensures that my naturally curly hair can combat this lingering humidity. How are you getting through this Indian Summer?
A few weekends ago Sarah and I got the chance to live out a lot of little girls’ fantasies: we were mermaids for a day! We took a class through AquaMermaid Chicago that taught us how to swim like a mermaid. I learned that it’s a beautiful skill to master and it’s a pretty big workout. We also got some tips on how to behave like a mermaid (hint: they’re friendly). While I thought I was going into the class just for some great photo opps, I quickly learned how fun it was to be in the pool again and pick up some new tricks with a tail! Keep reading for all the deats.
I think by now we all agree that you can wear white after Labor Day. That silly rule not to was thrown out years ago and now there are plenty of cute ways to wear white way into the fall. I thought I’d start the week after Labor Day by sharing one way I’ll be making the color last through an Indian summer.
That’s really all I have to share today. 🙂 Mondays are always tough, and the “Monday” after a holiday is certainly no exception. I had a great, four-day weekend but now I have to get back into the swing of things. I hope you also had a great holiday weekend. Leave a comment below with what you did, and how you’ll be wearing white after Labor Day.
Well, it’s here: my 29th birthday! For some reason I was really dreading this one as it got closer. Maybe it’s because 29 is such a final year to me; it’s the last year in your 20s. I know it’s not old by any means, but there’s something about getting so close to 30, a number I did think was old when I was a kid. Up until this past year I still felt like I was a young 20-something exploring the world and figuring it out. Now, with the arrival of my 29th birthday, it seems like a lot is going to change, quickly!
And the reality is, a lot will change in this upcoming year. There’s a lot I’m looking forward to, and lot I can be proud of that I accomplished in the last year. So I thought to celebrate this birthday I’d share five things I enjoyed in year 28, and five things I can’t wait for in year 29.
Happy memories in year 28:
- Getting engaged. If you had asked me at age 19 where I’d be at 28, I’d probably have told you married and with children. Having just got engaged this year, that’s obviously not the trajectory my love life took, but it was all the better. Steve and I really got to know each other and grow into a strong couple over our three years dating. There was no rush to make that timeline my younger self imagined.
- Getting a promotion. When I moved to Chicago at 24, I was switching professions and taking an internship. In a way that choice set me back, and I’ve struggled at times feeling behind in my career compared to my friends. It was exciting to get a promotion to prove that my hard work paid off, and I was happy to tackle new responsibilities.
- Moving in with Steve. Steve and I wanted to wait to move in together until we were engaged, and for us that was perfect. It’s been exciting to build our life in a junior one bedroom apartment and explore a new neighborhood.
- Watching my friends get married. This past year two of my best friends tied the knot. I was so happy to be there for them. I love celebrating love, especially when it’s a relationship I got to watch grow!
- Staying close with my college friends. In year 28, one of my best college friends (and former blog partner) moved to Chicago. I have had a blast hanging out and doing all of the things that we bonded over originally! Beyond that, other college friends and I have made more of an effort to get together after work, and I stay in touch with my girlfriends near and far through an ever-entertaining text chain.
What I’m looking forward to after my 29th birthday:
- Getting married. Steve’s and my wedding is planned for May 2017, and I am very much looking forward to making that commitment together. Right now the wedding planning might have me stressed out, but I keep reminding myself that the party with family and friends and ceremony with Steve will be well worth it!
- Getting healthier and stronger. I threw my back out in January, which actually might have been a blessing after it was all said and done. I hear so many people my age complain about back issues or other pains and I really encourage them to see a doctor or physical therapist about it. I in no way have dealt with everything I need to, but by reminding myself to do my PT exercises or make time for even just 20 minutes of physical activity, I can get back to the healthy, strong body I used to have.
- Stretching myself professionally. Recently my professional world and blogging hobby has required me to learn much more about social media, design and photography. I want to continue my professional growth to improve my work and my hobby. I’d love to hear how other people fit this in to their day-to-day routine, because that’s the part I’m still struggling with.
- Decluttering our apartment. This might seem like a silly, unexciting goal, but when you live in a small apartment you realize what you need and don’t. There are several boxes Steve and I want to store or donate, and I feel like getting rid of them will be a good reminder moving forward that I can be less of a consumer and instead make use of everything I have.
- Cheering on Steve in a marathon. I am not a runner by any means. When I first met Steve three years ago, neither was he. Yet somehow, during the time we’ve been together, his love of running snuck up on me, and he signed up for the Chicago Marathon. I still can’t comprehend his drive or desire to run 26.2 miles, but I’ll be out there in October cheering him on!
Images of Sprinkle Cupcakes ice cream sundae