Floral Shift Dress

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I’ve been on the go the past couple weeks (and Michael was in Nepal) so sadly I haven’t been able to share as much as I wanted to with you! I traveled to St. Louis to visit my family, attend a football game at Mizzou and even go to my high school reunion dressed in this Floral Shift Dress and Booties.

High school in St. Louis is a very BIG thing and when meeting a fellow St. Louisian, the conversation always begins with, “Where did you high school?”

As a proud alumni of St. Joseph’s Academy, I spent four years of my life forming some of the most amazing friendships and ones that I’ll have for life. So at the reunion, we spent the night walking the hallways of our old school, reminiscing over the antics we got ourselves into and just plain catching it — it was perfect.

Floral Shift Dress, Joie Booties, Tortoise Shell Sunglasses, Tassel Necklace, Ring

Bow Tie Neck Dress

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Last night, I met a couple of girlfriends at Cindy’s at the Chicago Athletic Association. It is one of the hottest places to go right now because the panoramic views of Millennium Park, modern airy feel and delicious cocktails and had been dying to stop in.

After sipping on a delicious Grey Garden cocktail and catching up for a while, we then headed downstairs for a party hosted by Chicago Social Brides in the hotel’s iconic ballroom. There was live music, beautiful decor and tasty hors d’oeuvres – all combined to make one for one fun event!

Even though I completely missed the 30’s dress code on the invitation, my bow tie dress (a steal at $58) was still perfect for a night of cocktails and networking. I even had a few gentlemen in the crowd tell me how nice I looked ????

And since I can’t style my hair in an updo to save my life, I headed to my favorite finishing salon, Goldplaited. I channeled beauty maven Julia Engel and asked for these adorable milkmaid braids. I am amazed each and every time they can get my short hair into a fabulous braid.

They have a braiding class coming up this fall and I really think I need to sign up. Any takers?!

Bow tie neck dress, Kate Spade Handbag, Black Wedges, Round Sunglasses, Pearl Double Stud Earrings, Gold Watch, MAC Lipstick

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What to Wear to a Black Tie Optional Wedding

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If a wedding invitation specifies Black Tie optional, then it is time to bring on the glitz and glamour!

Elevated from a cocktail attire wedding, black tie optional insinuates that the event is super fancy and your attire should follow suit.

On Me: Reem Acra Dress (Rent) c/o, Silver Cluster Studs (Rent) c/o, Red Shoes (here and here), Black Beaded Clutch (DSW in stores), Red Lipstick

Part 2: What to Wear to a Black Tie Optional Wedding

For men, this means a tuxedo or a dark suit and tie. For women, this means a long dress or a really dressy tea-length or short dress with heels, dramatic jewelry and hair.

A tri-fecta of lace, beading and tulle makes this Reem Acra tea-length dress from Rent the Runway perfect for a Black Tie Optional attire. Pair this gown with a statement shoe and silver cluster earrings and you’ll be a total knockout.

Besides my wedding dress, I have never felt so glam in my whole life. I just wanted to twirl and dance the night away.

Keep scrolling to see more of my outfit details and what my better half wears to a black tie optional wedding. Then, make sure to come back to the blog for the grand finale – what to wear to a black tie wedding!

All photos were shot by the talented Jennifer Kathryn Photography at the Chicago History Museum.

On Me: Reem Acra Dress (Rent) c/o, Silver Cluster Studs (Rent) c/o, Red Shoes (here and here), Black Beaded Clutch (DSW in stores), Red Lipstick

On Michael: Dark Gray Suit Jacket, Dark Gray Suit Pant, White Dress Shirt, Tie, Pocket Square, Floral Lapel, Shinola Watch, Black Dress Shoes

Windowpane Pants

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Whenever I meet with clients, I make sure my outfit is slightly elevated from my day-to-day wear. I aim to look polished, professional, and stylish since I work in a creative field.

These windowpane pants are a statement piece which makes them easy to dress around with this ivory blouse and muted, blush accessories. They also have a bit of stretch so I can still run around picking up invitations and supplies while remaining pulled together.

Windowpane Pants, Ivory Hi-Low Blouse, Nude Sandals, Pink Ombre Sunglasses, Ear Jackets, Gold Initial Necklace, Rebecca Minkoff Quilted Bag, Black Watch

Denim Pencil Skirt

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What’s old is new again…and denim skirts are baaccckk! 90’s style, button up versions are totally on trend but I am more into sleek sophisticated versions that can easily be worn to work.

From 9-to-5, pair this $60 denim pencil skirt with a gingham button-down shirt tucked in and nude heels. Then after work, untuck your top, tie it up in a knot for a playful, flirty look and add a red lip.

The material of the skirt is super stretchy but does not lose its shape, has a back slit making it possible to actually walk into work and there are pockets to stash your lipstick for reapplying. All in all, a plus for working gals!

Denim Pencil Skirt, Gingham Button Down, Nude Pumps, Red Handbag, Blue Sunglasses (old from Loft), Red Lipstick

Print Shift Dress

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To celebrate our first wedding anniversary, Michael and I packed our bags and headed to Mexico for five blissful days of sunny skies, ocean breezes and beach bumming.

After a quick flight to Cancun, we made our way  to the Excellence Resort in Playa Mujeres just in time for happy hour. Even though I usually work on the plane, once my feet land in my destination it doesn’t take me long to get into vacation mode.Since I barely unpacked my bags before ordering my first mojito, this blue border print shift dress (less than $30!) was the perfect option since it remained wrinkle-free in my bag and was easy to accessorize.

There are only a couple sizes left in this dress (I ordered the XS and think it runs a bit large) so I found a few other dresses here and here that fit the bill! 

Border Print Dress (limited sizes but I found some other cute options here and here), Ivory Wedge Sandal, Rattan Clutch, Ray-Ban Gold Aviators, Kendra Scott White Earrings, Bourbon and Boweties Bangle, Golden Cuff Bangle, Gold Watch

Rose Quartz

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Pantone just announced their top 10 colors for Spring 2016 and Rose Quartz tops the list. Even though we are just transitioning into fall, you can start incorporating this shade into your wardrobe right now.

Blush Blouse & Blush Skirt

Rose Quartz is soft and very feminine, but feels much more grown up than a lot of the pinks that have dominated fashion in the last few years. Reminiscent of a “flushed cheek or budding flower,” this hue proves that subtle can be just as beautiful as its bolder friends.

I don’t normally like the monochromatic look in anything other than black or white, but I used the different textures of my top and skirt to add dimension to this outfit. Slightly different tones, patterns or even materials will go a long way to help create a cohesive look.

Love the shade, but not ready to commit to a head-to-toe look? You can incorporate pops of Rose Quartz with your purse, watch or coat. I think it is soft enough to pair with almost anything, but goes especially well with peachy-coral,  cornflower blue and soft gray.

Rose Quartz Skirt, Blush Pink Blouse, Rose Quartz Earrings, Sunglasses (similar), Blush Sandals, Gold Watch

Location: Revel Fulton Market

Tassel Trim Off the Shoulder Dress

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Each night on our vacation, Michael and I tried a new restaurant at the resort. Even though it felt wonderful to wash the suntan lotion and sand off and get a little gussied up, I still wanted to keep my style a bit laid back since we were at the beach. 

I fell in love with this coral Tassel Off the Shoulder Dress online and loved it even more when wearing it. It was so comfortable, breezy and could double up as a coverup or shirt which is excellent for traveling. With a $42 price tag, I may just have to buy it in navy too. 

Tassel Off the Shoulder Dress, Blue Cord Bib Necklace, Gold Jelly Sandals, Ray-Ban Aviators

Striped Tweed Skirt

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I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend! Mine was filled with a little bit of work, a little bit of fun and a whole lot of shopping in preparation for summer vacation to Watercolor, Florida, with my family.

Even though I had my eye on summer whites and sundresses,  I found this adorable striped tweed skirt in the interim. I love the color scheme, material (no wrinkles) and the fact that it paired perfectly with my new Kate Spade Bag.

Striped Skirt, Kate Spade Bag, White V-Neck Tee, Nude Sandals, Kendra Scott Earrings, Michael Kors Watch, Pink Sunglasses (similar here)

Chambray Off the Shoulder Dress

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Today marks the first day that the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is open to everyone and this Chambray Off the Shoulder Dress is one of my favorite purchases!

Priced at only $31.90 (normally $48), this off-the shoulder dress is so versatile – it can be worn as a dress for a date night or or even as a coverup when heading to a beachside restaurant. The light blue hue also makes this summer dress appropriate for celebrating the arrival of a baby boy.

I’ve paired the chambray dress with my new Oliver Peoples Sunglasses, light pink earrings and my favorite Jack Rogers flat sandals to keep the look a little more casual. But, the length is long enough that I would also wear it with a suede lace up sandal to transition into fall.

Curious about sizing? I’m wearing a small (I’m 5’1″) and probably could have sized down to an XS. Also, the dress is lined so need to worry about your undergarments peeking through!

Want to shop all of my favorites from the Nordstrom Anniversary sale? Just click here or here! The deals and sizes are going fast so make sure to shop early and often! Pricing goes back up August 7th.

Chambray Off the Shoulder Dress, Oliver Peoples Sunglasses, Kendra Scott Earrings, Jack Rogers Sandals, Gold Clutch