Pho Real

Now that it’s super COLD, snowy and freezie (yup, I made up another word) I’ve been on a mission for Pho. It’s basically my go to meal in the winter months. I love how warm the broth is and the jalapeños and siracha clear my sinuses — esp if I’m sick — all in all Pho is basically the perfect cold weather meal (well that and RAMEN!). Being new to Minneapolis means that I need to ask people where to go AND trust the Yelp reviews. The later is hard for me because a lot of reviewers have lead me astray and lets face it some of them are probably friends with the owners, BUT you never know unless you try (right?!??)… which is exactly what I did.

My mission (bc it’s a mission to me – from me, I had no choice but to accept it): FIND PHO PLACE, to accomplish this I ate at two different places in a week (dedicated and motivated). The two spots: Pho 79 and Quang Restaurant. I really liked both places for different reasons. Pho 79 had AMAZING broth and they were super generous with the meat (NOM). Quang had yummy Bun Bo Hue (beef noodle soup) and egg rolls (wasn’t crazy about the egg rolls at Pho 79). My husband isn’t a huge fan of soup so he ordered the Com Ga Xao (lemongrass chicken and rice), which was pretty delicious too! All in all I’d say I’m happy with my new Pho spots… and shall RETURN. If you ever find yourself in Minnie, tell them I sent ya (though it might be awk since I don’t know the owner or anything)!

Outfit Combo: top: AllSaints leather biker jacket (old, similar style here), Zara button up and checked scarf and H&M cropped sweater, bottom: J Brand Mid Rise Skinny Jeans, shoes: Nike ‘Pre Montreal’ sneakers, and bag: Prada Saffiano Lux Double Handel Mini Satchel

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Leopard Spots

Voodoo Vixen vivienne leopard pencil dress

What a change in weather a week could make! I swear, I don’t remember it being that cold when I left for Italy (and gratefully it wasn’t very cold in there either). But it sure was a different story when I returned. Last week was so nippin cold! It almost got me a bit worried that a Buffalo-style snowstorm is close to making it’s way to NYC. My first panicked thought was: oh sh!t, I still have a few fall items obtained pre-Italy that I haven’t worn yet, like my Voodoo Vixen vivienne leopard print dress. Thankfully, there was a break in the cold weather on Sunday and my faux leather jacket was all I needed to keep myself warm. I know it’s going to get back to being colder, and something even worse soon. Is praying to the fashion gods to keep the snow at bay for at least a few more weeks considered wishful thinking?

Outfit Combo: vivienne leopard pencil dress from Voodoo Vixen (find similar also here and here), faux leather jacket from Romeo & Juliet Couture (find similar here and here), aixa lace-up leather platform booties from Member’s Only, envelope clutch from ASOS (find similar here and here).

Voodoo Vixen vivienne leopard pencil dress

Voodoo Vixen vivienne leopard pencil dress

Voodoo Vixen vivienne leopard pencil dress

It’s even “warm” enough on Sunday that I could brave taking my jacket off to show you the leopard dress in all it’s glory.

Voodoo Vixen vivienne leopard pencil dress

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Rome

Last stop ROMA. So much to see and so very little time. The architecture, history, views, and awesome weather, left us kinda speechless. Which was fine because we had a tour guide do all the talking for us. YES (le sigh) we were the American tour group following the person holding up a stick with a flag. Let me say this though… TOTALLY WORTH IT. Yea we had headphones, and followed a leader ON THE FLIP SIDE we had access to areas the normal tourists couldn’t go into so SUCK IT!

AND NOW… it’s back to REALITY. Till next time #jetsetters

Jess’ Outfit: top: Uniqlo button up and Helmut Lang knit tank sweater (similar here), bottom: J Brand ’811′ Mid Rise skinny jean, shoes: Nike ‘Pre Montreal’ sneakers, and sunnies: Ray-Ban aviators.

Gita’s Outfit: hoodie: Rodarte, pants: fabletics, bag: matt & nat, scarf (worn as turban): Madewell, and shoes: Nike Free 4.0 Flyknit.

Another Insta-shot!

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Pisa

We couldn’t leave Florence without taking a quick (1 hour with all the stops) train ride to Pisa. I mean it would sort of be a crime for us to be that close and not go check it out and pose as if we were holding the building up. Of course with all the stops and our semi-poor planning on using the regional train (FYI totally different from the train we took between the bigger cities), we only had a limited amount of time to take photos and climb to the top ot the tower… BUT on the bright side we went, we climbed, we posed, we conquered.

Ciao Bella!

Jess’ Outfit: top: Helmut Lang textured sweater (similar in white) and Alexander McQueen scarf (similar here), bottom: J Brand ’811′ Mid Rise skinny jean, boots: Vince Camuto (similar here and here), and bag: Prada Saffiano Lux Double Handel Mini Satchel.

Gita’s Outfit: sweater: french connection, jeans: uniqlo ultra stretch jean, bag: matt & nat, scarf (worn as turban): Madewell, and shoes: Nike Free 4.0 Flyknit.

That’s goin’ on Instagram (HEHEHE #growup)

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Florence

It’s raining, it’s pouring, BUT that won’t stop us from enjoying our day in Florence. To be honest we were pretty lucky on this trip. November is the rainy month for most of the cities we visited. So to only be drizzled on one of the days was kind of AMAZING.

The entire time in Florence for me was sort of a food coma blur. Hands down FAV meals from our entire trip were eaten here. Both mine and Gita’s most memorable meal was from Trattoria I’ Parione. We ended up sharing everything we ordered: beef carpaccio, gnocchi, filet, potatoes, tiramisu, creme brulee, and of course chianti. Per usual, WE REGRET NOTHING!

Jess’ Outfit: top: H&M top and Sheinside sweater, bottom: rag & bone skinny stretch jean, and boots: Vince Camuto (similar here and here), and just in case umbrella.

Gita’s Outfit: dress: Brandy Meleville (similar here and here), fur vest: Saks (similar here and here), scarf: American Apparel, and boots: Dolce Vita.

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Venice

Ciao from Venezia! The great thing about being in Europe is the train system is AMAZING. I really wish it was as reasonably priced (and fast) in America too. We were able to jump on Trenitalia and got to Venice, from Milan, in two hours (THAT ISH CRAY). The down side (there always has to be a catch) to this mode of trans that we learned later on in our trip… one word – STRIKE. Yup, that’s right if the workers go on strike, NO TRAIN = you stuck son.

Any-who back to Venice. One of our goals, besides having fun and drinking Chianti, on this trip was to eat our way through the local cuisines. In Venice the dish du jour is… seafood (OBVI). We originally wanted to eat at Ristorante al Covo but alas didn’t think to make a reservation (WHY WHY WHY) and got turned away at the door (‘Embarrassing’ – Unikitty voice). Luckily we were trying to eat at 1930 (730 p.m. aka old people time in Italy) so we were able to get a table at Ristorante Carpaccio, recommended by the host at al Covo who took pity on us. I ate a caprese salad to start followed by pasta with clams (#nomnom #foodcoma) and REGRET NOTHING.

Anyone else have FAV restaurants from Venice or places they would like to go back and try?

Jess’ Outfit: top: Sheinside v-neck blouse (another style here) and J.Crew Utility vest, bottom: rag & bone skinny stretch jean, and boots: Vince Camuto (similar here and here)

Gita’s Outfit: top: Banana Republic timeless v-neck tee, American Apparel unisex circle scarf and Romeo & Juliet Couture faux leather jacket, bottom: Uniqlo ultra strech jean, and sneakers: Nike Free 4.0 Flyknit

Parmesan, we’re in Piazza San Marco!

Another shot for Instagram… because it’s the LAW!

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Milan

Buongiorno! We apologize for being MIA last week BUT we have a good excuse. Our annual M&C trip… YAY! This time we went to ITALY (super loud excited voice #mcxitaly). There were so many places we wanted to see that we decided to do a pseudo-back packing trip through our top four cities. First stop… MILANO aka Milan (duh!). Due to our tight timeline (one week) we were only able to stay in Milan for a day (so SAD) BUT we do have some tips for those who are planning to visit this amazing city in the future.

First things first, pick the sights you want to see and get your tickets in advance. I’m talking WAY in advance. We ordered ours a month out and that was still cutting it a little close. We went to see the Duomo di Milano and Da Vinci’s The Last Supper. Our limited time left us with a list of so many other places we want to see in the future which basically means we need to go back!

Anyone else LOVE Milan and have a list of must see places?

Outfit Combo: top: J.Crew Endless shirt, Ralph Lauren denim jacket (similar here and here) and Zara plaid scarf (similar here and here), bottom: H&M leggings (similar here and here), shoes: Nike ‘Pre Montreal’ sneakers, and bag: Cole Haan Vestry Mini Crossbody

You can’t tell we are tourists or anything… The map totes doesn’t give it away (HA!)

Say Parmesan!

That’s going on Instagram!

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(Almost) All Black

H&M Imitation Leather Skirt

I don’t know what it is about NYC, but people here just love to wear dark colors, specially when it’s cold out. True story: I was once walking by a couple, who were obviously tourist, commenting to each other that so many people here wear all black. As I chuckled at their stereotyped observation I realized that *gasp* I was pretty much wearing head-to-toe black. I guess I fight right into that stereotype.

Outfit Combo: sweater from Victoria’s Secret (find similar here and here), imitation leather skirt from H&M, aixa lace-up leather platform booties from Ann Taylor, envelope clutch from ASOS (find similar here and here).

H&M Imitation Leather Skirt

H&M Imitation Leather Skirt

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Make a Statement With Crazy & Co. (and Win $50 Gift Card)

Win $50 Crazy & Co Giftcard

No doubt about it, I am a huge fan of statement jewelry (sometimes the bigger the better). Why? I think because it’s probably the easiest way to transform and elevate your outfit. This is especially true if, like me, your closet contains a lot of basics that pieces that you usually mix and match together. Nothing wrong with a classic LBD (little black dress) + blazer combo for work. But that outfit will look so much hotter with an attention grabbing statement piece thrown on top of it.
Plus, as the weather gets colder (and our clothes gets bulkier), I think it begs the case for statement jewelry more. I just love the unexpected touch of a chunky statement necklace paired with a cable-knit argyle sweater.

Pictured above is a selection of my favorite statement jewelry from the Crazy & Co. collection (shown in photo in clockwise order, starting from top-left):
 ♥ Goddess Necklace
 ♥ Yes, My Lady Earrings
 ♥ Roomila Necklace
 ♥ Solar Bracelet
 ♥ Fly Earrings

And of course, since today is Giveaway Friday, there will be a little something for you guys too. One lucky reader will win a $50 Crazy & Co. gift card, good towards the purchase of any jewelry item (necklaces, earrings, rings or bracelet) on their site. So you too can also make a statement.
Well what are you waiting for? Joining the giveaway is super duper easy through the handy Rafflecopter widget below. Go get ‘em! ☺

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Land of Lakes

The past month has been a whirl wind of change for me. I moved cities, jobs, etc. from the DC metro area to (pause for effect) Minneapolis. Yup, that’s right I am now a resident of the city where Prince is from … #purplerain. My two main concerns since the move is the massive winter and getting arrested for stalking Prince (does anyone have bail money?).

Before it gets too cold I’m going to enjoy the nice fall weather and explore all the sights and restaurants my new area has to offer. Any of our MN readers have recommendations for me?

Outfit Combo: top: Sheinside blouse (similar here and here) and Alexander McQueen scarf (similar here), bottom: rag & bone skinny stretch jean, boots: Vince Camuto (similar style here), sunnies: Ray-Ban aviators, and bag: Fendi (old)

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Leather and Blue

H&M Crêpe Dress

Fall is in full swing and soon enough the chill of winter is going to be here. On some days, it feels like that’s already here in NYC. I don’t know about you guys, but I’m not quite ready yet for the bulky coats and scarves, and the face-hiding wool hats. I’m wearing out my summer and early fall clothes, so I don’t get that “damn I can’t wear this anymore for a few more months” regret. This crêpe dress is really more of a summer piece, but good thing the weather is good enough that I can still wear it layered with a pair of tights.

Outfit Combo: crêpe Dress from H&M, tights from Spanx, short necklace from H&M, boots from Dolce Vita, backpack from Deena & Ozzy, vintage hat.

H&M Crêpe Dress

H&M Crêpe Dress

H&M Crêpe Dress

H&M Crêpe Dress

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Giveaway Friday: Zoya Nail Polish Set

Zoya Nail Polish Set for Timo Weiland S/S 2015 Collection

TGIF! And of course we got Giveaway Friday lined up to make your day even better. One lucky winner will get a Zoya nail polish gift set, with three gorgeous shades: Blu, Adel, and Bela.

Well what are you waiting for? Joining the giveaway is super duper easy through the handy Rafflecopter widget below. Go get ‘em! ☺

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So Red

GAP 1969 always skinny cords

No doubt about it, I’m a fan of the color red. But usually when I wear red, it’s as an accent to my ensemble. Maybe a pop of rouge lipstick here or a bright crimson scarf there. This 1960 always skinny cords from gap though, is a little more “in your face” than my usual. Because every once in a while it’s a good thing to have a whole lotta red.

Outfit Combo: embellished french terry top from Piperlime Collection, 1969 always skinny cords from Gap, aixa lace-up bootie from Ann Taylor, duxbury clutch from Brahmin, glitterdust hinged bracelet from Charming Charlie.

GAP 1969 always skinny cords

GAP 1969 always skinny cords

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Metallic Sheen

Nanette Lepore Love Potion Blazer

Outfit Combo: love potion blazer from Nanette Lepore, skirt from Forever 21, top from Frenchi, lexey heel from Coach, scarf from Madewell, necklace from Kenneth Cole.

Nanette Lepore Love Potion Blazer

Nanette Lepore Love Potion Blazer

Nanette Lepore Love Potion Blazer

Nanette Lepore Love Potion Blazer

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Giveaway Friday: Buxom Make-Up Set

Buxom Make-Up Set Giveaway

Awww hell yeah Friday is here, which means it’s time for another Giveaway Friday! We’ve kept the Giveaway Friday streak going for three weeks now, and I’m planning on not breaking it.
For today’s Giveaway Friday, we’re giving one lucky reader a make-up set from Buxom cosmetics. I’m a huge fan of this cosmetics company, especially their high-pigment lipsticks, which gives me the vibrant long lasting colors I’m looking for without drying out my lips. Any make-up fans out there would know that color and moisturizing combo is not as easy to find as you might think.

So what exactly will you get your Buxom set? Here’s the full list of the goodies:
 ♥ Color Choreography Eyeshadow
 ♥ Stay-There Eye Shadow
 ♥ True Hue Blush
 ♥ Full Bodied Lipstick
 ♥ Amplified Lash Mascara

Well what are you waiting for? Joining the giveaway is super duper easy through the handy Rafflecopter widget below. Go get ‘em! ☺

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Yellow and Pink

French Connection Summer Mozart Ribbed Jumper

Not the first time I’ve worn this jellow jumper, and probably won’t be the last. It’s one of my favorites that’s in heavy rotation in my outfit combos. For today’s look I couldn’t resist mixing the bright yellow with another strong color: pink.

Outfit Combo: summer mozart ribbed jumper from French Connection, textured skirt from H&M, necklace from Marc By Marc Jacobs, earrings from Urban Outfitters, sandals from H&M.

French Connection Summer Mozart Ribbed Jumper

French Connection Summer Mozart Ribbed Jumper

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Overcast

It’s been super rainy, gloomy, and overcasty (yea I made that one up) the past couple days, which pretty much = staying inside and binging on Netflix (OH YEA!). Luckily the rain finally cleared up, so I decided to use that as a chance to take Bear out for some fresh air AND sneak in a blog photo (FINALLY).

Outfit Combo: top: Uniqlo shirt (similar here) and J.Crew utility vest (on sale!), bottom: H&M leggings, and boots: Vince Camuto (similar style here)

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Giveaway Friday: Simple Sensitive Skin Expert Gift Set

Simple Sensitive Skin Expert Set Giveaway

One of my new years resolution this year was to always wash my face everyday. I have one of acne-prone skin that only takes one night of not washing my face for a zit to pop up. But even with the threat of looming acne, washing your face every single night is sometimes easier said than done. Inevitably there’s always those times where you come home totally beat after a long day/night, park yourself on the couch with the intention of staying there only for a moment, only to pass out and wake up in the morning feeling gross because you still had yesterday’s make-up on.

One of my secret weapon to combat that is to keep “emergency” cleansing facial wipes under the coffee table and by my bed. So on those nights when you just absolutely can’t muster the energy to properly clean your face, at least you still have facial wipes to the rescue.

For today’s Giveaway Friday, we’re giving one lucky reader a Simple Sensitive Skin Expert gift set, which includes the facial wipes and a few other goodies:
 ♥ Moisturizing Facial Wash
 ♥ Replenishing Rich Moisturize
 ♥ Eye Make-Up Remover Pads
 ♥ Cleansing Facial Wipes

Well what are you waiting for? Joining the giveaway is super duper easy through the handy Rafflecopter widget below. Go get ‘em! ☺

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The Sweater Dress

H&M sweater dress

The chill is here, which means it’s time to bust out the sweater dresses.

Outfit Combo: sweater dress from H&M, necklace from Langford Market, sandals from Stuart Weitzman.

H&M sweater dress

H&M sweater dress

H&M sweater dress

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Halloween Costume: Minnie Mouse

minne mouse halloween costume

When it comes to Halloween costume, I’m all about the DIY. Store bought costume usually come in weird sizes and they never quite fit like how they advertised online. But when I say DIY, I’m not talking about some complicated sewing. Matter of fact, the best kind of DIY Halloween costume are the kind that can be mostly put together with the items already in your closet, like this Minnie Mouse costume. Heck, if you’re Disney-phile and you got yourself some mouse ears on your last trip to Disney World, you probably already have all the components of this costume.

Putting together the Minnie costume is mega easy and only requires four items:
1. Red polka dot dress – buy at Modcloth
2. Yellow pumps – buy at Veda Soul
3. Mouse hat – buy at FarFetch
4. Black opaque tights – buy at Bare Necessities

Okay, it doesn’t get any easier than that! Be on the lookout for more costume ideas from Mimi and Chichi in the coming weeks leading up to Halloween. Have any costume ideas you’d like to try out? Let us know and we’ll help you “DIY” it.

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