Wednesday, February 29, 2012

It's that time of year...midterms

girl asleep
This is what I've felt like this past week.

As midterms week inches closer and closer, I get busier and more tired. Having late-night dance team practice with a 7:30am class the next morning is a recipe for exhaustion! I do admit, I love dance team and the 7:30am class is my favorite of all my classes, so it is worth it. I do need to take care of myself, though.

Last semester I wrote this post about "surviving" midterms week in terms of staying healthy and studying. I am so glad I re-read it, because I really needed to read those tips again. I need sleep! I need sleep to memorize the material I learned that day, to have a clearer mind, and to be able to focus more and be productive.

I suggest reading it if you're nearing midterms too, or are just really busy! Taking care of our bodies is so important, yet it is often quickly neglected when we get tied up with other things. I just took a nap - I needed it! I feel much more awake than earlier this afternoon, and am ready to go to practice.

Happy Leap Day!


Tuesday, February 28, 2012

plaid & stripes with olive pants

Button-up shirt: Madewell Necklace: Muses & Rebels Pants: F21 Boots: Corso Como Watch: Michael Kors Ring: Kate Spade

Since I only have about twenty minutes between getting home from rock climbing and leaving for classes, I'm always in a rush! I sometimes just switch out my leggings and sneakers for jeans and flats and throw on a hoodie before heading to class. But today was different - I picked out my outfit before rock climbing. I should've realized this's just like choosing the next day's outfit before bed so you don't have to groggily put something together the next morning. Sometimes I can throw together a rockin' outfit in a rush, but it's much nicer to have the clothes laid out and ready to go.

I used to wear these olive-colored jeans all the time last year, but haven't lately. I decided to pull 'em back out and pair them with the plaid button-up and striped belt. The boots add a neutral contrast and the accessories play off the colors in the rest of my outfit.


Monday, February 27, 2012

cable knit and leopard print

Sweater: J. Crew Headband: Henri Bendel Necklace: Muses & Rebels Ring: Kate Spade Bracelets, tank: F21 Watch: Michael Kors Jeans: Nordstrom Flats: unknown (aka my mother's closet)

I went for a classic look today with a cable knit sweater, skinny jeans, and leopard-printed flats and added the accessories to put more life into the outfit. I just realized the color scheme exactly mimics my bedroom - I didn't even mean to do that! I love the combination of red and purple, and the animal print packs an extra punch.

After getting only a few hours of sleep last night, I needed some rest this afternoon. I watched an episode of Dance Moms (so much crazy, so much awesome) and took a short nap. Now it's back to business before performing at the last men's basketball game tonight!

Oh yeah, the second photo was taken in my bathroom because I wanted to get a closeup of my accessories. Total MySpace mirror pic right there. Don't mind the awkward green hand towels in the corner. Haha.


Sunday, February 26, 2012

casual sunday

Button-up, ring: F21 Tank: Nordstrom Bracelets: New Look (London) Boots: Chinese Laundry Leggings: Trouve

I was about to title this post "Lazy Sunday," but then realized that today is anything but! I've been out and about running errands, and tonight I have two meetings and dance team practice back to back. Busy day!

Because of all the running around, I decided to wear a casual outfit that is comfortable but not sloppy. I adore these leggings - they're very comfortable and warm - by Trouve. It may be hard to tell in the photo, but they are lined to give them a "riding pant/equestrian" feel. I saw a lot of leggings like these, or the ones with the patches, when I was in Italy.

Hope you have a great start to your week!


Saturday, February 25, 2012

a few kate spade spring pieces

I've always loved the vibrant colors and cute prints from Kate Spade. I'd enjoy going to the Kate Spade store on vacation and look at all the fun pieces they have. 

Anyway, I still love Kate Spade today - some things are a little out of my personal price range, but it's always fun to be inspired! Here are a few of my favorite pieces out right now:
This would work with so many outfits! It can add flair to a casual outfit and complement a dressy one. So pretty!
A thin bow belt has been on my wishlist for quite some time! A black one would go with everything, but this also comes in a coral-orange color as well. This would be a perfect addition to a pair of bright, colored jeans this spring!
I have the laptop version of this sleeve (I didn't see it online) and I love it! Mine is in black, with gold metal accents. The inside is lined with an adorable polka dot pattern. I like how it is simple yet fun, and totally functional.

[Random, but funny story: my mom had this red Kate Spade purse when I was in elementary school, and there was a point in time where I was at the exact height of the bottom of the purse when she was wearing it. So when I walked next to her and she'd stop, bam! The purse corner would hit me in the head! Haha. Just imagine that...]


Friday, February 24, 2012

winter florals

Blazer: Nordstrom Tank: Madewell Shorts: Nasty Gal Boots: Corso Como Tights, bracelets: F21 Watch: Michael Kors Ring: Kate Spade

Floral shorts! Wearing shorts in the winter in a floral print make me feel a little rebellious. With just a couple of pieces to save your skin from the wind and cold, floral shorts can be incorporated into an appropriate winter outfit, and then flawlessly transition back into spring and summer.

Plus, these shorts have hidden pockets - who doesn't love those? It's a random but nice - and convenient - detail.

I think I'm going to take a nap now...I'm exhausted! I had a fantastic workout at the gym but I need to recuperate a little. Ah, I love the weekend.


Thursday, February 23, 2012

dreaming of rome

This semester I am taking a Roman archaeology class, and today's lecture only had me dreaming of my days in Rome (I studied abroad in Florence last summer with a four-day opening tour in Rome.) I miss it so much! When the professor showed a photo of the Stadium of Domitian on the PowerPoint, I could almost taste the nutella and strawberry gelato I had near Piazza Navona.
The first gelato I ever had
One of the three fountains at Piazza Navona
We discussed The Colosseum earlier this week...
I met an Italian who said "I live that way, near the Colosseum" like it was no big deal
We talked about The Pantheon too!
The oculus inside The Pantheon
The Vatican is gorgeous! It was cool to see some of the art in the book that I saw in the museum.
I took this photo of The Vatican from far away at this other castle! What wonders a zoom lense can do
I am so nostalgic right now. I miss Italy so much! I so, totally, completely, hope I am fortunate enough to go back and visit.

But for now, my Roman archaeology class will just have to suffice!


Wednesday, February 22, 2012

quick jewelry tip

Have you ever worn jewelry that turns your skin a greyish-green color? The stud earrings I wear almost daily leave a colored circle behind, and a few of my rings do the same on my fingers. Ick!
Sometimes, it's a love/hate relationship with these earrings
On the bright side, there is a way to prevent this! I heard from a friend that if you paint clear nail polish on the part of the jewelry where the color rubs off, it'll stop it from discoloring the skin. So simple, so brilliant.


Tuesday, February 21, 2012

february and the color pink

Earlier this month, I was at the paint-your-own-ceramic shop with dance team. While walking by the holiday examples, I said, "I love Valentine's Day, because everything is pink!"

This comment received some laughter, some "oh typical," and "of course Ally would say that..."

The same thing happened with the word "sparkles." But let's not get into my love of everything glitter...though I will mention that I think glitter should count as a color.

Anyway. I thought I would share some pretty pink pictures! Because who doesn't enjoy looking at beautiful/cute/inspiring images? (Cough, cough, Pinterest addicts? I do love Pinterest.) 

You can find these photos - with the source credits - on my Tumblr. Don't worry, not all the photos on my Tumblr are pink. Here are a few of my faves that are pink:
Inspiration is only better written in pink
Peonies, my favorite
Pink furniture
More home decor
Makeup brushes!
A calm, blush pink dress
Hot pink typewriter
Painted apple
Fashion advice to live by

If you have a blog on Tumblr, feel free to link it up in the comments and I'll take a look!


Monday, February 20, 2012

nail art for fall 2012

I was perusing Fashionista today and saw their post about the nail art on the fall 2012 runways. They mentioned that the nail art trend may begin to dwindle by then, and that most of the nail polish colors were variations of nude.

Since nail art is so big right now, however, I thought I'd share two of my favorite looks! I think both of these looks can be used any time of the year.
The two-toned color is so interesting. The red draws the eye to the blue detailing. This is so unique! Love.
This was my other favorite look. It may be hard to tell in the photo, but the tips are a metallic gold. It's a twist on the French manicure; more elegant than the neon tips I've seen lately. This would match just about everything!

When fall gets here, I guess we'll see what happens to the nail art trend. For now, though, bring on spring fashion!


Sunday, February 19, 2012

california dreamin'

I absolutely love California.

Every time I visit, I experience true joy and miss it so much after I leave. I get the feeling that it is where I am supposed to be. I almost went to college in Southern California, but decided on Gonzaga in the northwest instead (which is an awesome school). When I decided to go to Gonzaga, I knew after graduation that I would like to move to California.
I graduate in just a little over a year. Fifteen months, to be exact. I have fifteen months to enjoy college, the best time of my life, before I move on to my other dreams.
I'm nervous. I've been to California countless times, but I've never lived there. I know only a few people. But that's what makes it exciting. A new, fresh start.
Sunny weather, being active, living near both the beach and the city...ah, it sounds so wonderful. I know Southern California can have its flaws - expensive living, overdone plastic surgery, the occasional earthquake - those are just stereotypes. I may love it, or I may hate it. I just know that I need to at least get it out of my system ... so I'll have no regrets.

Cheers to the next fifteen months, and to whatever's up ahead!


Saturday, February 18, 2012

at the coffee shop

Sweater: Anthropologie Tank: Nordstrom Jeans: Joe's Headband: F21 Flats: Report

I am currently at this little coffee shop (actually, it's quite big for a coffee shop) about to do homework. But I'm blogging first. Because that's more fun. :)

I realized that I have three midterms, a paper, and a project all due in the same week, so I'm trying to get ahead with my homework for the 3-day weekend. (Thank you, President's Day holiday!)

Enjoy your Saturday,


Friday, February 17, 2012

very pose-y today

Cardigan: Aritzia Blue tank, headband, heels: F21 Jeans, white tank: Nordstrom Necklace: H&M Bracelets and ring: Tiffany & Co.

Tonight I am going out to dinner with some friends to try Indian food for the first time! For some reason, it is one cuisine I have never tried. I hear it is great though - I'm just a little nervous about the spiciness! After dinner, we're going to head downtown to see GOP candidate Ron Paul speak. I'm excited to see one of the presidential candidates.

Happy Friday!


What the '00s kids will reminisce about in the future

Being a '90s kid, I love reading the lists on blogs, Facebook, etc. that come up with the items of nostalgia with '90s pop culture. There was nothing better than knowing every lyric to The Fresh Prince of Bell Air theme song, worshiping N*SYNC and Hanson, trading Pokemon cards, Lisa Frank school supplies, portable CD players, and phrases like, "That was da bomb."
After years of babysitting and a lot of time spent being a nanny, I am slightly stunned that kids don't know what I'm talking about when I mention Doug, Clarissa Explains It All, and Global GUTS. They don't understand what life was like before DVR, TiVo, Hulu, and YouTube, and how I just HAD to make sure I didn't miss the Rugrats "All Growed Up" television premiere.
Then I realized these kids were born in the '00s - what will the millennium kids reminisce about in their teens and beyond? Here are a few guesses:

1. When the fast-track to fame was creating a YouTube video that goes viral, like Greyson Chance and Sophia Grace
2. When every girl was obsessed with Justin Bieber, and still loved him after he cut his hair and dated Selena Gomez

***Fun Fact: I have Selena's swimsuit top in a different color

3. Having a love/hate relationship with Miley Cyrus, aka Hannah Montana
4. Being the first kid in class to get an iPhone
5. When iCarly got annoying sometimes but you really wanted her cool room
6. Knowing who Beyonce and Justin Timberlake are, but having no idea who Destiny's Child or N*SYNC are

7. Lucky kids got a sold-out Kinect for Christmas 2010


8. When my babysitter talked about '90s things and I had no idea what he/she was talking about...

I guess we'll just have to wait and see what really happens when these kids grow up. If you think of anything to add to this list, submit it below!


Thursday, February 16, 2012

So I just finished The Hunger Games...

...and I. am. obsessed.
I am so blown away by how amazing and creative this book is. Taking time out of my super-busy days to read a non-required book for fun is really saying something for me. Reading the last page was one of those moments where I didn't want to finish it because I didn't want it to end! I just have to say, Suzanne Collins is brilliant.

It seems like everyone is buzzing about the upcoming movie, and I tried my best to stay away from the movie photos and trailers while I read the book. I didn't want it to change how I saw things in my head. 
Here's the movie trailer:

So excited! Any other Hunger Games fans out there? What did you think of the first book? Who is going to see the movie opening day? (I know I am!)

Now, on to book two...


PS - S/O to Zephyr for mentioning me about yesterday's post for College Fashion's Hautelinks! Thank you!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Spice up your space!

Last fall, I wrote an article for the pilot issue of Sweet Lemon Magazine about decorating tips on how to add color to a room without painting the walls. 
I photographed my room at home for the magazine, but since moving into an apartment at school, I've had to work with different furniture and space. Here are some photos of how I set up and organize my new dresser - I hope this provides some inspiration to those of you who want to spice up your space!
Here are three ways to add color:
1. Jewelry! I have a lot of big, trendy, colorful pieces, so I use a jewelry stand to organize it and put it on display. I got this jewelry stand from PB Teen many years ago, but they have newer versions. Urban Outfitters is usually another good place to look for jewelry storage as well. 
To the left I have necklaces hanging on thumbtacks to draw the eye up and keep them (mostly) untangled. The more necklaces you hang, the less you can see the actual thumbtacks!
2. Board of inspiration! I have a leopard-print whiteboard from Target that I learn up against the wall and place papers on with magnets. I ripped out an article that I liked from ELLE magazine, put up a clipping from The New York Times style section, and a couple other little notes from friends.
3. Stack of books! I love stacking a few small "coffee table" books on a tabletop. Depending on the type and number of books, you can play with size, color, and height. Since you don't actually need a coffee table for displaying books, this would be perfect in a dorm as well!
Here you can see the necklaces better (and part of my Fiorentina soccer scarf hanging below!)
A closer shot of the top of the dresser
Small dishes for watch, bracelets, and lip gloss
I like to keep daily essentials separate, so I put the watch/bracelets combo I often wear in this dish I got from American Eagle last summer. On the right, I have lip glosses and balms (from M.A.C. and Benefit) sitting in a dish I made at one of those paint-your-own-ceramic places. What I liked about painting my own dish was that I could choose whatever colors I wanted! I used brown, red, and purple colors to match my room.