what to pack: fourth of july weekend

The Steele Maiden: What to pack Fourth of July weekend
Anyone else already have their bags packed?  I’m staying put this weekend – but after a month of mini getaway trips I’d like to think I have my summer weekend bag pretty well put together.  My trick (documented last Fall in this ‘what to pack for a long weekend away in the city‘ post) is to stick to easy to mix separates and a singular color palette.  Since my Summer style naturally falls into reds, whites and blues anyway Fourth of July weekend is sort of a no brainer.  A mix of patterns, a few solids, texture (like denim and lace) to keep things visually interesting, and neutral/metallic accessories.  I’d throw in a pair of jeans/denim shorts and a plain white tee to round things out – but otherwise I feel confident I could tackle 3 days at the beach/lake, day trips, nights out and everything in between with just the pieces shown above (and by the way – almost all of what’s shown is on sale!).  Where are you headed this weekend and what are you packing?

passing through: abbot kinney

The Steele Maiden: Passing Through Abbot Kinney
Abbot Kinney – named so for the developer & conservationist responsible for the area – is a small stretch of shops and restaurants a few minutes East of Venice Beach, California.  With a focus on independent designers and farm to table fare the area is akin to Brooklyn’s Williamsburg – albeit with a surfer vibe.  It was one of the very first areas we explored after moving to West LA and continues to be a favorite spot to wander on weekends.  If you live in Southern California and haven’t been then I urge you to add it to your list and if you’re visiting from out of town it’s certainly worth a day of your trip (you can tack on the Venice canals and a visit to the nearby eclectic stretch of beach to round things out).  Below a few of my favorite stops along the way.
1. Lemonade – One of the few ‘chain’ restaurants/stores along Abbot Kinney, Lemonade is a Southern California outpost that earns a spot on my list for it’s seasonally fresh menu and relaxed cafe vibes.  Don’t forget dessert.
2. UrbanInc – one of the prettiest stationary shops I’ve ever come across, if you like beautiful cards, gift wrap and office accessories (think Rifle Paper Co. meets Kate Spade) then this is a must visit.
3. Satine – the second outpost of this upscale boutique, perfect for window shopping (or dropping a pretty penny) you’ll find brands like Alexander Wang and Rebecca Minkoff mingling with their own signature brand
4. Firefly – a lifestyle boutique (there’s even a Firefly Kids next door for little ones) this well curated shop offers a great selection of housewares, clothing, accessories and more – I especially love their selection of books and candles
5. GTA – Gjelina Take Away (or GTA) offers the great taste of always packed Gjelina next door, without the formalities.  Wait in line outside for a slice of wood oven baked pizza and eat it while people watching out on the street.
6.  Toms Flagship Store – even if the boardwalk friendly shoes aren’t your vibe (although you’ll find elevated styles here you may not see anywhere else), this store also boasts a full coffee bar & cafe, backyard seating area, and even monthly movie nights.  A great spot to rest your feet a minute (and well, at least try on a pair of new shoes).

my favorite views with sunglass warehouse

In case you missed it, last week I kicked off a series of adventures with Sunglass Warehouse – taking you with me to some of my favorite Los Angeles spots while showing you the glasses to match (all hand picked from their vast & affordable selection).  Since the first journey took you with me on a hike through the Hollywood Hills – and kept things very casual – I knew I wanted to dress things up this trip.  So for a Saturday Date Night, the boy and I headed to East LA and the hip little neighborhood of Silverlake.  I think the best date nights for us are a combination of something we know and love mixed with the excitement of the new – and Silverlake covers both.  We can always count on this neighborhood for great food, drinks and shopping, but since we don’t live all that close there’s still plenty of places we’ve yet to try.  To match with this date night mantra I also wanted to have a little fun with my look and tried out a pair of clear lens glasses.  Admittedly nerd chic I counteracted these bold red glasses with a body skimming mini dress, easy leather jacket and printed heels.  We ended up trying out a gourmet grilled cheese restaurant (yep, those exist and are as delicious as you imagine) and this quirky meets sexy look (glasses included) was a pretty big hit with my date.  A perfect night out if you ask me.
Sunglass Warehouse Glasses c/o // Urban Outfitters Jacket // Built by Wendy Dress – cute option here // Restricted Heels c/o // Vintage  clutch
The Steele Maiden: Silverlake with Sunglass Warehouse
The Steele Maiden: Silverlake with Sunglass Warehouse
The Steele Maiden: Silverlake with Sunglass Warehouse
The Steele Maiden: Silverlake with Sunglass Warehouse
The Steele Maiden: Silverlake with Sunglass Warehouse

This post has been sponsored by Sunglass Warehouse – as always, all opinions are my own.  Thank you for supporting the brands that make The Steele Maiden possible.     


new york photo diary

The Steele Maiden: New York Photo DiaryI’ve already shared with you what I wore while I was in New York (here and here) but there was still so much to share I thought I’d post a quick photo diary!  The city always manages to sweep me up in it’s fast pace, so aside from Lucky FABB I also did quite of bit of dining, exploring, meeting up with friends and making new ones.  The conference itself – one day of which was held in the Conde Nast building, meaning I was just 9 short floors beneath the headquarters of Vogue Magazine – left me feeling more inspired than ever to devote myself to this little corner of the internet.  So many of the amazing speakers reverberated the same sentiment to success “Work Hard and Be Nice to People”.  And when I think of some of the bloggers I met that I’ve admired for years now, they are proof positive of this lesson.  Besides the conference, I also had the pleasure of attending a brunch hosted by Seychelles and BC Footwear over the weekend.  A room filled with some of my favorite bloggers, tasty treats and beautiful shoes? Basically the best way to spend a Saturday ever.  New York, you never disappoint.
The Steele Maiden: New York Photo Diary
The Steele Maiden: New York Photo Diary