If there’s one thing that just screams summer, it’s the quintessential straw tote. They’re perfect for the farmers’ market and the beach, but I think they can also replace your normal handbag for a chic city look (a la Jane Birkin), so long as you switch out your coverup for something a bit more tailored. There are so many amazing options out there right now; J.Crew has a classic version, this Kayu tote with colorful details is super fun, and this great textured one is pretty ideal. Tory Burch always come out with a great straw tote each season, and this years is no exception (I’m planning to wait until it goes on sale – I understand that it’s handwoven, but close to $500 for a straw tote is a little crazy).
I have two or three straw bags already, but they’re all getting a little raggedy and worn looking so I’m in the market for a new one. We are heading to France tomorrow (!!) and my plan is to find the perfect one in some small little market somewhere, so wish me luck. If i don’t then I think it’ll be that J.Crew one for me.
I’m having a bit of a Kathryn Ireland obsession at the moment. I’ve seen her work when flipping through magazines, own one of her books, and have even sourced her fabric for my old boss, but since I never watched Million Dollar Decorators I feel like I missed out a little on seeing just how gorgeous her work is. I’m not sure how I fell down the rabbit hole of scrolling through her website and looking at every single project she has listed, but I did, and here we are.
I just love how her homes look so comfortable and lived in, while being well thought out and beautifully designed but never looking too ‘decorated’. Her rooms all look like people actually would actually put their feet on the coffee table or flop down on the couch for a nap, which is so much better (in my opinion) than a showpiece room that you’d be afraid to go into for fear of messing it up. Kathryn spends a lot of time in the South of France (you can even go to a design workshop that she teaches there, doesn’t that sound amazing?) and you can see the French country influences in her work, as well as her love of colors and patterns and mixing the old with the new.
Last night some friends and I went to Papa Cristo’s, a popular Greek restaurant in downtown LA for a cooking class. Papa Cristo himself led the group to the industrial kitchen, gave us some snacks and homemade wine, and then and taught us how to make moussaka (which was good and very authentic, though I’m not a huge moussaka fan) and a super simple feta cheese dip, which I loved. Here’s how to make the dip:
1 lb Greek (this is important) feta cheese, 1.5 tbsp oregano, 1/2 cup Greek olive oil (extremely important – Papa Cristo talked a lot about his love for olive oil and how it was a ‘gift from God’ and that there was no such thing as expensive olive oil because it’s so important), optional 1 tbsp dried red peppers for heat
1. Take feta out of fridge about 30 minutes before you begin
2. Once feta is soft enough, combine all ingredients in a large bowl
3. With hands or mixer, thoroughly smoosh (Papa Cristo’s exact words) thoroughly all ingredients until it becomes smooth
4. Spoon dip into a serving bowl, cover and chill
Serve with pita chips or veggies like cucumber and red pepper, and try not to eat it all before your guests arrive 😉
A little striped dress, perfect for hot summer days. A pretty neutral polish for when you’re tired of wearing bright pinks and corals. More stripes, in the form of a fun clutch (think it’d be too much to wear it with the dress?) and the prettiest pale blue bikini. I just ordered this swimsuit and am hoping it fits nicely – don’t you just hate when the bottoms dig in to your sides rather than just lay nicely? The worst. I really think that Hanky Panky should start making swimsuits in the style of their undies that lay so nicely.
I think this looks like the ideal sunhat, don’t you? I love the color of it and the contrast band is a nice touch. This face spray is one of my favorites, especially after a day at the beach when you need a little refreshment and moisture. These pretty denim wedges are majorly marked down right now and would end up being such a perfect summer shoe year after year.
How gorgeous is this vintage suzani from Furbish? It would look great as a bedcover or a decorative wall hanging. Oh and it’d be an amazing beach blanket but it’s pretty expensive so you probably wouldn’t want to do that to it! Something that can go to the beach though, is this chic bamboo and cabana striped chair.
I really loved Athens, though a lot of people warned me that I wouldn’t and said to not even bother stopping in the city en route to the islands. Granted, we were only in the city for about 15 hours altogether and it wasn’t high tourist season so maybe that had something to do with it. My girlfriends and I arrived late on a Friday night with just enough time to check into the New Hotel (which I highly recommend, it was chic and affordable and very central) and headed to a nearby restaurant called 2Mazi for dinner, where we ate incredibly fresh seafood and had some surprisingly tasty Greek wine.
Unfortunately I think those are the only names that I remember of the places that we ate because other than that we had breakfast and lunch at random little spots that we came across that looked cute – though one thing we attempted to do but went at the wrong time was to have drinks atop the Grand Bretagne Hotel which has really gorgeous views of the city, so please do that if you’re ever in Athens!
We wandered around the city and visited the Acropolis which was such a neat experience, it’s amazing to actually see the things that you learn about in textbooks. Isn’t traveling the best? After that we really just took pictures and walked around to explore and kill time before hopping on the ferry. Here are a few of my favorite photos from our quick visit, I’m sorry I don’t have that many great recommendations for where to eat or what to do!