From the moment we walked into the Getting Gorgeous event, hosted by Audrey McClelland and Vera Sweeney, we felt chic and well cared for. The energy in the room had a palpable sense of creativity and fashion. Which was right up our alley. The vendors were fabulous and had an energy similar to what you feel at a fashion show. It was exhilarating from the start. Fashion bloggers were prancing all around creating a movement and flow that felt like a dance. A dance where we were all one, supporting one another and working together. A forum of encouragement and support.
Of course, a fashion blogging event wouldn’t be the same without impressive brands present. And the girls behind it all, Vera Sweeney and Audrey McClelland, impressed us with some of the best. Troll Beads, Kevita, Liquid Oxygen, Bali, Cocktail Caviar, and some delish food vendors.
We were excited at the thought of collaborating with any of these brands, especially since our experience in collaborating with Troll Beads had been a thrill. The excitement continued as we walked into the brightest and most well lit beauty bar we’ve ever seen. It was like walking onto a movie set with a strong makeup and hair team. A fashion and beauty girl’s dream. What seemed to resonate with us the most was the sense of community and a passion for fashion and beauty. We strive to surround ourselves with people who build us up and, in turn, we do the same. That was exactly the type of atmosphere that Getting Gorgeous had. We had the time of our lives and can’t wait for their next event.
Picking your outfit for a surprise birthday party can be tough, especially when you know about the surprise. Being the guest of honor, in my opinion, is sort of stressful. You want to look good, feel confident, have a great outfit (but make sure it’s balanced so it’s not too flashy), and most importantly, you want to be a good host and make everyone feel comfortable. Add to that a girl who has a closet full of clothes with nothing to wear and you’ve got a problem. Or maybe you’ve got a shopping opportunity!
Honestly, I was happy I found out about the surprise even though my sweet husband, who was planning the event at the amazing Hotel Monaco in Philadelphia, was disappointed. I immediately started scouring Revolve Clothing online to search for the perfect birthday outfit. When I saw this gem (romper by Parker), it immediately grabbed my attention. I was worried it would be too short because, let’s face it, too short is too short no matter what your age. I ordered it in two different colors because I always like to have choices and Revolve has an amazing return policy (I would return the one I didn’t wear). After some prodding from some trusted friends and my sisters, I decided to go for it because, why not? It was my birthday and they all assured me that it was not too short. From the beginning I loved how this romper was balanced with a flowy, loose top. I couldn’t wear something on the shorter side AND have it fitted to my body. I wanted to exude class while also wearing a sassy outfit! Balance is key when you’re trying to achieve that.
The shoes I FINALLY got to wear are vintage Patrick Cox. I wrote ‘finally’ so emphatically because I got those shoes when I was an intern at DKNY in 1998 and I wore them for the first time that night. When I wore a disco ball.
The night was a blast and I didn’t realize I looked like a disco ball until my funny, goofball husband started calling me one. I kind of enjoyed looking like one, all shiny and sparkly. Having my closest friends at dinner and then more great friends join us for after dinner dancing, just made the night so special and perfect. The kind of night I’ll remember forever because we danced, laughed and went round and round on the dance floor, kind of like, well…a disco ball. We just had an all-around good time. The kind of fun you should have when it’s your birthday!
Hearing the words “The Hamptons” evokes a visceral excitement for me. I can almost taste the sea-salty air, feel the rays of sunshine warm my skin and, most naturally, see the streets lined with some of the chicest boutiques in the northeast.
Well, this girls’ weekend lived up to all of those expectations and was nothing short of fabulous. When you arrive at your friend’s house and are greeted with champagne and laughs you just know it’s going to be good.
Add to that cheese platters, fresh cut flowers and extra lemons (because they know you’ll want them for your water), you are reminded that you truly do have the best girlfriends on the planet.
Dressing up and choosing outfits never ceases to excite the pants off of me and I was packed (I should say WAY over packed) for our 2 day weekend. But, a girl never wants to be without the things she needs, and when her friend asks her if she has scissors to cut the tag off a freshly purchased item, you want to be able to say yes! And I did.
My friends were troopers, excitedly taking pictures for the blog, and even helping with getting my creative juices flowing. Don’t you just love girlfriends? If yours are anything like mine, you feel loved and supported when they’re around. And that is exactly how I felt. They took many pictures of me this weekend and would say, “turn this way, look down, let me get a close up” and I was overjoyed to have them be a part of the whole process.
Of course, being away on a girls weekend doesn’t mean that I don’t think about blogging. In fact, I couldn’t stop thinking about ways I could get great photos to use for this post. This is sitting poolside early in the morning, while enjoying coffee and conversation with the girls
When Saturday arrived, my friend who was hosting us, surprised us with a hair blow out at the trendy salon called “Blow.”
I went for a beachy wave because… why not?? We were in The Hamptons.
The salon was covered with the same gray shaker shingles which grace many of the shops and beautiful homes, and I just love them. The way they look and the way they make me feel all beachy and cool meant it was a photo op I couldn’t refuse. I recruited one of my besties to stand with me for this photo and she joined me with model-like ease.
And this is a picture of 3 of us girls, who have the exact same sandals by Yosi Samra. When you find a fab pair of flip flops and you don’t live in the same city, you all buy them and enjoy wearing them together.
Before heading out for a fun-filled Saturday night birthday celebration, we had a blast getting ready together. This is me doing hair & makeup, which was pleasantly reminiscent of our college days.
Dress: HauteHippie, Ring: Rachel Zoe, Earrings: LeLe Sadoughi, Snakeskin cuff: Kara Ross, Bangles: Genevieve Lau. I used a lot of different make up like Stila, Makeup Forever, Chanel, and Benefit. My favorite highlighting cream by a Philadelphia local makeup line, Darcy by Dicaprio, quickly became a favorite of my girlfriends too.
We the Free sweats for Target and Gilligan & O’Malley tank top for Target.
Having the best girlfriends on the planet also means you are set to have the best weekend on the planet. It was my birthday and so my chic and fabulous friends showered me, not only with lemons, but with beautiful, stylish gifts. One friend also handed over a pair of Debi Kroell grey booties because she had never worn them. I had been on the hunt for the perfect pair for months and I ended up finding them in my besties closet!
Amanda Uprichard never ceases to amaze me with the most beautiful, saturated colors (the blouse). The necklace I’m wearing was a gift from my trendy, street-sassy dressing friend who scored this gem in a Connecticut boutique. The booties are Devi Kroell, as I mentioned before, and made me feel like I was standing a mile high. The jeans are topshop and the gold midi rings are from Nordstrom. Of course, I’m always wearing something from the amazing Genevieve Lau Jewelry collection (the arrow ring on my pointer finger and bangles). Her bangles are a staple every day whether I’m wearing a tshirt and ripped jeans, cocktail attire or anything in between. I layered my other wrist with bangles from Anthropologie. The clutch is unknown but is one of my favorites with snakeskin printed leather and the greatest green, turquoise and gold colors.
Celebrating my birthday with the biggest and brightest candle I’ve ever seen, with cheers and smiles all around.
When Sunday rolled around (all too quickly) we realized things would soon be back to normal. Waking up early, taking care of kids, 2 of us working full-time professional jobs and 2 of us working as stay-at-home Mothers. Wow. How did our little reality (ah hem, fantasy) of a girls weekend come to a close so quickly? We ate our lovely breakfast and drank our delicious coffee, which was prepared again by our bestie who never sat still the whole time and who helped made this weekend what it was. Special, lovely, memory creating and just plain awesome. Until next time, we will text each other sweet messages and start planning our next reunion, hopefully in the fall. And when that weekend comes, we be able to reminisce about this Hamptons weekend and all the crazy fun we had. The best part about girlfriends is that the fun never ends and when we see each other we just pick up where we left off and start creating new memories all over again.
These girls are my best friends from college and man, do we have some fun and wild memories together. It’s just so nice to have the comfort of “old” friends in our adult lives. So many laughs and memories still being cultivated together. And the ability to act like kids again with no judgement, no rules and the freedom of expressing your raw, uninhibited feelings. About any and everything. All the time. With no exceptions. Until next time, friends. You are #the4bestfriendsanyoneeverhad and I love you with all my heart.
P.S. Riding in the car on the way home from a weekend trip doesn’t mean you have to wear sweats! I chose to wear my black Topshop ripped jeans, Calvin Klein green and white tie-dye blouse, Isola sandals, Micheal Kors watch, a leather wrap bracelet and my Genevieve Lau Jewelry layered necklaces and bangles.
I began my career with Escada in New York City, but my true love of fashion started long before. I have been obsessed with fashion for as long as I can remember. At just five years old, my outfit selection was an important and thoughtful decision, right down to the accessories I was choosing. To this day, I can recall being more excited about the salmon-colored jumpsuit I wore to go see Santa than I was about actually seeing Santa. Perhaps this is when my love of jumpsuits began!
I value the whole process of putting an outfit together – from the shopping hunt to the final ensemble. I believe accessorizing is equally important and can elevate any outfit. My love of fashion even overflows into hairstyle and makeup selection. Styling is always on my brain. Nothing makes me happier (besides my family) than putting a fabulous outfit together!
I studied corporate communication at Ithaca College. I also took classes in styling at Parsons School of Design and classes in fashion at The Art Institute of Philadelphia. I worked in the fashion industry in New York before starting a family. After living around the world, my husband and I settled in Pennsylvania and have two sons. In my spare time, I choose to read style magazines and will pick up a book by Rachel Zoe, Tom Ford or Chanel over any other book! I love the Lord, my family, friends and fashion more than I can portray here in words.