Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Molly's Going Away Winery Tour

As you may have heard, Molly is making the move with her husband to Kansas City. As a special farewell, her work colleagues and a few local friends decided to get together and embark on a fun-filled day of winery hopping around Central Illinois. Everyone started with a delicious and filling brunch at Boone's Saloon in Springfield before starting the journey. 

Our first stop on the tour was West of Wise Winery, located in Petersburg, IL. The lovely couple that owns the winery stayed out and chatted with us while we made decisions and most of us opted for a full tasting. They were so informative as we tried each wine and we learned all about how the winery came to be. Plus, you can try a whole flight of every wine they offer for $6! You can't beat that deal and we were all so pleasantly surprised about how delicious they all were.

Even those of us who didn't like sweet wines as much found the sweeter selections to have a nice tart finish, and we liked those as well. Some of our favorites included the Oaked Chardonel and the red table wine. We really did not find a wine we didn't like at this place!

Overall, delicious wine, a great personalized experience, a relaxing atmosphere, and passionate and knowledgeable owners really made West of Wise stand out.

We could have stayed for one glass of everything, but we had to move on to the next stop. 

Next up on the tour was Danenberger Family Vineyards in New Berlin, IL. 

It was such a gorgeous day outside, we actually decided to stay at this winery the rest of the afternoon. The winery is built on the Danenberger family property and the tasting areas are an extension of their home. They take hospitality seriously! It's like a boutique experience in the middle of the countryside. The whole area is surrounded by those famous Central Illinois corn and soybean fields, which struck a stark contrast against the blue spring sky. 

Some of us did a tasting here too, but two of the big favorites were the Blanc and rosé. 

Don't worry, Jodi was only holding Molly's wine for her, not double fisting (ok, she might have tasted it too). ;) 

The yard area around the house and winery is beautiful with plenty of seating for big and small groups of friends. They even have a bocce ball court set up, which is perfect for passing the time. The guys in the group decided to have an impromptu game while the girls chatted. 

Danenberger also encourages you to bring your own picnic to enjoy with their wine. We had a pretty great spread of various cheeses, fruits and crackers. It's a great place for large groups, because there are so many different seating areas both inside and out. We'd highly recommend Danenberger as well for the great wine, ambiance and gorgeous spaces to relax.

We chatted away the rest of the afternoon and before we knew it, it was time to say goodbye. It was a perfect way to send Molly off to Kansas City in style. Perhaps we will need to do a Missouri winery tour post soon? 

Monday, May 23, 2016

Floral Off the Shoulder featuring Hello Dolly

We are all for supporting small and local business, so we were beyond excited when Hello Dolly reached out to us and asked us to feature a couple of their new pieces on Mod Circus. Hello Dolly is a very trendy online boutique featuring the latest styles for stellar prices. They also will come to you and host a private trunk show for you and your closest friends! 

I chose this beautiful navy blue floral off the shoulder top to style from Hello Dolly. The red flowers stand out in contrast on the dark blue background, making this a perfect spring top. 

The material is flowy and light, providing lots of movement when you walk. The sleeves are attached, but separate and hang loosely off of your shoulders. I'm very excited to wear this all through the summer, mixing in shorts when it gets warmer. 

I paired the top with flares to balance out the flow of it (and to make me look taller) and a bright red bag and red lip to bring out the pops of red in the floral pattern. Round sunglasses rounded (ha) out the look. Be sure to check out Hello Dolly's website and book them for a trunk show if you're in the Central Illinois area, and don't forget to invite me! Happy shopping!

Outfit details: Top: c/o Hello Dolly, Flares: Express, Bag: Kate Spade (similar), Wedges: Seychelles

Friday, May 20, 2016

Wear it Two Ways: Floppy Hat

Welcome to our latest installment of Wear it Two Ways! This month, we style a floppy hat for you. There are so many different kinds of floppy hats out there, you really can't go wrong when picking one out. They're perfect for shading your face on sunny days while being a fun statement. Below, we tell you how we styled our hats for spring! 



I went for kind of a boho-festival goer meets afternoon garden party vibe. Actually, (Jodi, feel free to disagree here) I think that if we'd said, OK, let's both go for a "boho-festival goer meets afternoon garden party vibe" for this shoot, we'd both be spot on. That's what I (and we hope you!) love about the Wear it 2 Ways features: that we both come up with something totally different, even when styling the same item. 

Pairing my gray wool hat with a thick crocheted lace top made for a fun and interesting mix of materials. I love pairing a strappy bralette under semi-sheer tops because it keep you breezy without really being too revealing. You can always substitute a cami for a more conservative look. Because a lot was going on texture-wise, I kept the color palette to black and white, with a pop of blush pink.

Cropped flares are a fun spin-off of bell bottoms that we're starting to see everywhere and this lovely fringe purse helps amp up that '70s boho vibe.

A bow choker necklace and gladiator sandals are simple basics that are perfectly on trend this season. I'm ready to listen to tunes in the garden all day while my floppy hat keeps me nice and shaded!

Molly's Outfit Details: Floppy Hat: H&M, Bandeau: Forever 21, Lace Shirt: TJ Maxx, Cropped Flares: H&M, Choker: Hobby Lobby DIY, Sandals: Target (similar), Purse: TJ Maxx (similar), Matte Lip Color: Modcloth (similar)


As Molly said above, and that I am in complete agreement with, we went for a boho-festival goer meets afternoon garden party vibe for this month's W2W, and unintentionally I might add! It's funny how similar, yet dissimilar we can be at times!  

Funny story about my hat. I was visiting dear friends in Central Lake, Michigan a few summers ago and we paid a visit to the newest antique/vintage shop that had popped up recently in the town. The shop had a ton of really cool and unique flea market finds and as we were on our way out the door, I decided to pick up a hat and try it on. I loved the way it looked, so I checked for a price tag. Low and behold, it was a Badgely Mischka hat for $15! I couldn't believe it. On top of that, it actually fit my head! You see, I have a huge noggin and a lot of hats don't fit properly on said noggin. Anyway, I scurried up to the front to pay for it and have been wearing it proudly ever since! 

This bell sleeved dress that I recently purchased is a perfect match for my lucky find hat. The bell sleeves really add to the whole 70's theme of the hat. It's a great material too, that really stretches, but also hugs in just the right places. It almost feels like a yoga pant dress. Is that a thing? It is now. 

To finish off the look, I added this pale blush pink bag and neutral wedges to keep things classy. Because who says you can't be classy at a boho-festival afternoon garden party? 

Jodi's Outfit Details: Dress: Miss Selfridge (on sale!), Hat: Badgley Mischka (flea market find, similar here), Bag: H&M, Wedges: Modcloth (love these)

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Molly's Bathroom Renovation

As you may remember from this post a few weeks ago, I'm moving to Kansas City at the beginning of June. My husband and I are so excited, but it's bittersweet. Our house is one thing we really wish we could take with us. We've poured tons of time and literal blood, sweat, and tears into renovating our 1915 bungalow for the three years we've lived there, and we've had to move up the timeline on a lot of those projects before we go. This will be the first of a few posts of the final farewell tour of a house we've put so much love into. See our entryway makeover from last summer here.
Is it weird that a mostly white bathroom is one of my very favorite rooms we've overhauled? We knew by the time we were working on this room that we'd likely be selling the house, so we made design choices with that in mind and tried not to do anything too stylized or outlandish. We still got vintage-inspired tile we loved, a retro-patterned frosted glass shower door, and a glossy white mid-century modern inspired vanity and linen cabinet. Looking back, I don't think I'd change a thing even if we'd planned to stay for 10 more years.

To see how far we've come, let's go back to how the room looked before. There was no bathtub, and the room was covered in heavy yellow wallpaper. It came complete with a marbled vanity that was, let's just say, not new.

We basically took the room down to the plaster and started from scratch. Though we added a bathtub, everything else stayed in essentially the same place, so we didn't have to redo existing plumbing. (Let the record state every time I say we, I mean my husband and father-in-law. I don't enter the picture until the priming, painting and caulking phase.)

Above is a shot down to the bare bones. Below, you can see many steps later with nice new mildew-resistant drywall, and the tub installed. Our pup, Reese, obviously has to inspect between each step to make sure we're up to code.
Below is a shot after we'd painted everything in crisp white and tiled the floor. I can finally say I've helped at this point! On HGTV, this would have happened in about 2 minutes. This took us about two weeks.
Last, we installed baseboards, the vanity, linen unit, shower doors, and toilet. Ta da! A fresh and clean full bath with a sleek and modern flair. I love that pure white doesn't have to be boring or basic.
I really love the vanity and coordinating pieces we got from Menard's and I feel like they set the tone for the style. It's a mix of Ikea simplicity and mid-century modern character. Also, the drawers and linen unit doors are slow-close, which is a total luxury I'd like everywhere I go.
I would not recommend undertaking any renovation like this unless you had people with solid knowledge working on it. We're so lucky that we did! We learned a ton in the process, but I'll leave it up to my husband if he's ever up for doing it again in the future : ).
Thanks for stopping by! More rooms to come soon!
Tile: Lowe's, Vanity: Menard's, Hanging Linen Closet: Menard's, Mirror: Menard's, Sconces: Menard's (similar), Retro Frosted Shower Door: Menard's, Towels: Target, Bathmat: Target, Curtains: Homemade with fabric from JoAnn's

Monday, May 16, 2016

Take My Money Monday

It's Monday and we're alive! To celebrate, we're starting a fun new feature that will show up every once in awhile called "Take My Money Monday." It's a roundup of all the trendy things we're excited about buying for the new season. We toyed with "Friday Favs" or "Wishlist Wednesday," but, let's get real, we're just asking our favorite retailers to just take our money anyway. And, who doesn't need to dream a little on a Monday, after all? We've even linked all of our picks below, so you can snag some Monday merch for yourself. Now, without further ado, we bring you our first installment of TMMM.


This spring I'm all about useful basics with a super whimsical twist. From classic denim shorts with a scalloped edge, to neutral gladiator sandals that happen to also be gold glitter jelly shoes, I'm all about showing off the playful side of style when it gets warm out. You'll see some of our favorite spring trends here from cold shoulder and off the shoulder styles, to vertical stripes, gladiator sandals and a hyper romantic giant flower crown. I may or may not have given my money to some of these already (cough, gladiator sandals and denim shorts).

1. Zara
3. Zara
5. H&M (still in stores)
7. H&M
9. Zara
10. GoJane




Holy moly, do I look forward to a new spring and summer wardrobe. Between new sandals, sun hats, off the shoulder tops, gingham everything and dresses, there are so many things I want to buy right now. It helps to put it all in one place, so I can drool properly. I even threw in this sweet gold swan pool float because a proper wish list just isn't complete without at least one toy. What are you currently obsessing over?

5. Target
10. Topshop
11. H&M 
12. ASOS 

Friday, May 13, 2016

Denim Shift

I'm all about the shift dress silhouette lately. First of all, it feels more casual since it's not form-fitting. Next, the shape has major retro influences, which obviously I love. An added bonus not to be overlooked is that you can eat a gigantic meal without worrying your waistband will get tight! Since it's fairly short, you won't end up looking matronly or frumpy either.
I especially loved the lace up detail on this dark denim number. The lace up style is hot, hot, hot this season, and this is a fun understated way to incorporate it. The stretch denim material is so soft and comfortable, I feel a little like I'm getting away with wearing PJs in public or something. Scandalous. But totally not.
Another trend I'm loving this Spring is wearing bandanas and scarves all rolled up tightly in place of a necklace. A bandecklace? (Brb, going to go trademark that.) For most people, this is a way to jump on the trendy bandwagon without having to invest in anything, because who doesn't have an old bandanna laying around? This haute look comes straight from my husband's sock drawer. ;) A high ponytail helps show off all the detail around the neck.
I'm all about breaking style rules in ways that aren't too outlandish (and sometimes that are the right amount of outlandish), and here did I not only mix black and brown or black and navy, but I wore ALL 3! Take that, fashion police! It works because they're all neutrals, and there aren't any other colors mixed in.
Cutout booties matched my black bandecklace (I mean, it does have a nice ring to it, right?) and helped balance out the large fields of navy and brown. Speaking of which, I'm just loving this bag I snagged from TJ Maxx. It's got a fun cutout pattern, but it's a nice warm brown, which makes it very versatile and not too flashy.
What are your favorite trends you're rocking (or exited to start rocking) this spring?
Outfit Details: Dress: Forever 21 (similar), Booties: Target, Bag: TJ Maxx, Matte lipcolor: Modcloth (similar)