Kentucky Derby, Devon Horse Show, Belmont Stakes, Preakness Stakes, Grand Prix, the list can go on. They are the most popular horse shows and horse races of the season and you may have already heard the buzz begin. There are horse shows, race viewings, travel plans to the best race tracks in the country and parties galore. The only problem surrounding the pretty invitation you received in the mail (ok, the one you received via evite or paperless post) is the first question that runs through your mind … “What am I going to wear?” and better yet, “WHERE am I going to find a hat or fascinator?” Believe me, you don’t want to end up at a mall kiosk searching for one. I had tried that once and failed miserably.
Well, I’m here to tell you that I have a solution. An elegant, perfectly sophisticated, “Meet Me at Kensington Palace” solution. I’d like to introduce you to my friend, Amy Holzapfel. The creative director and genius behind, ‘Ella Grace Custom Hats’. She launched her company as a result of her love for creating timeless, fashion forward pieces for her clients to wear to special events. Her impeccable designs mimic the beauty and uniqueness of each of her clients. And believe me, the second you try on one of her masterpieces, you are catapulted into high fashion and could hold your own at a Royal Wedding next to the likes of Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton. Take a look at a preview of Amy’s one of a kind creations by simply scrolling through the icons above. Click HERE for a direct link to ‘Ella Grace Hats’ website. You can rent or buy any hat or fascinator, which range from $150 and up.
Many of you have private messaged me about this black bathing suit I wore on a recent trip to Mexico. I bought it from South Moon Under and they still have it in stock. Yay! It fits true to size and has a major slimming effect — you will love it! The cutouts are right on trend and the seam detailing along the sides help to whittle the waistline, making you feel your best even on a bad day. Believe me, after eating guacamole and chips every day in Cancun, this is exactly what I needed at the end of our vacation. This suit hit the mark where slimming details are concerned and I have worn it several times since Mexico … and that is a successful purchase in my book. Hope you love it too! xoxo
p.s. how cute are my friends bathing suits too?!? I love having fashionable (and fun) friends 🙂
To purchase the Kenneth Cole bathing suit I’m wearing, click here. Scroll to the bottom for links to similar styles.
This is my husband, Jim. I haven’t introduced him to my blogging community yet because he doesn’t really like to be on social media that much. I wasn’t planning on posting pics until I got requests from you and these are the only photos I have so … hello Jim!
These girls are a bundle of fun, I tell you. Fun, fun and more fun!
We had the best time together with just our husbands and us. No kids. Have you taken time out for yourself lately? Taken a trip with your husband and your friends? If not, I highly recommend it. It was fab.
When talented Pittsburgh photographer, Anita Buzzy Prentiss from Buzzy Photography, asked to photograph me on the beach in Avalon, NJ, the creative energy was palpable from the start. This girl is all about empowering and encouraging women, and when it comes to capturing beautiful, creative images, she just knows what she’s doing. Being photographed by her was both an honor and a privilege.
Being around Anita just makes my heart happy. She’s positive, radiant, and just plain awesome. Add to that her motto of “Look gorgeous, Feel great, and Be amazing” and you’ve got yourself one fun, uplifting photo shoot. Since she has recently revisited her days as a makeup artist and teaches women the art of makeup application through her business with Mary Kay, we were able to play with makeup before heading to the beach for our photo session.She created a ‘beauty cocktail,’ so to speak, which she thought would be the perfect mix of glowing skin, natural eyes and subtle lips. And then, after handing me a glass of wine, she let me have my way with all her brushes and color palettes. The whole evening was a fashion and beauty girls dream.
I decided to wear this Calypso St. Barth’s caftan dress because of its ethereal, flowy silhouette and cinched waist. I just love a flowy dress, especially when I’m at the beach and get to watch the fabric billowing in the breeze. Since I also love an ikat print and the color turquoise, I knew I had to have this dress for the photo shoot when I saw it at the chic boutique Menagerie (located on Lancaster Avenue in Wayne, PA). Add in a beautiful sunset (one of my favorite things on the planet), and this evening was just perfect.
We didn’t apply much make-up because we wanted a natural, glowing look. After all, we were at the beach. We used some of Anita’s Mary Kay make-up and, I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised by the quality. I especially loved the lip liner and lip stick because it was moisturizing but I equally liked how the powder foundation made my skin look smooth. My hyper-pigmentation all but disappeared and I was pleased by the fact that my pore size seemed to diminish.
I had a plethora of my favorite jewels on with this caftan. If you’ve been following my Instagram account, you know how much I love my Genevieve Lau Jewelry. Her designs are to die for and the price point of her 14K gold designs are, in my opinion, the best you can find on the market. I wear something from her collection every day and, in true ‘Chic by alison rose’ form, I layer them like crazy. Here I’m wearing a few necklaces, bangles and one of her fab arrow rings on my pointer finger.
I also layer my other favorite jewels, like these rings on my ring finger, from A. Jacoby & Company for a delicate, deeply layered look. They are also 14K gold and are so dainty and beautiful. It’s easy to layer them (and layer them, and layer them) since they are so subtle and elegant. I will definitely be purchasing more from this brand in the future!
My Troll Beads leather wrap bracelets have not come off this whole vacation! They look so cool with a bathing suit on the beach, ripped jeans and a T-shirt, or a flowy dress, as you see here.They have been so versatile this summer!For more about my Troll Beads obsession, be sure to check out my blog post Troll Beads and Summer Sunshine
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.