Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Portland Travel Guide

By now, you've probably seen the Instagram posts and my Seattle post about the trip I took to the Pacific Northwest a couple of weeks ago. My husband and I were celebrating our *almost* five year anniversary and had a ridiculously good time exploring a part of the country we'd never been to. We did tons of research first, and tried to find the best places to check out in the short amount of time we were there. This is by no means an all-inclusive list, but here are some of our favorite places we experienced, ate, and drank in the Portland. Be sure to check out my Seattle Guide here

Salt & Straw

Salt & Straw is the one place that seemed to be on every list of "what to do in Portland." We aren't one to argue with every recommendation about ice cream, and holy cow, how right everyone was. Their salted caramel ice cream is basically legendary, and after trying a few flavors (which they highly encourage, and I highly appreciate), I had to go with it. It was basically a spiritual experience.

Enso Winery

We checked out this urban winery based on a recommendation from Lindsay of KC Wineworks. To try as much as we could, we got a rose/white flight and a red flight. The wine was delicious and had some flavor notes we've never really tasted before. It was a great stop before dinner!


After deciding we wanted to do one "fancy meal" on our trip, the consensus was that we had to check out Nostrana. They typically require reservations, but we showed up right at 5 pm when they open (there was already a good number of people waiting there), and we were able to snag a table outdoors. We went on gnocchi Thursday, so we obviously had to try that out. Between our bread basket, aperitifs, the gnocchi, the special of the evening, and the tiramisu, we were transported to Italy in the most delicious way possible.

Pittock Mansion

This historic mansion just outside of the city was a fun stop that's only $10 a ticket to check out. On the self-guided tour, there's a ton to learn about the history and economics of an early Portland and and interesting period in American history. The views from the mansion grounds include everything from the Portland skyline to mountains like Rainier and St. Helens. And, from there you can hike a trail down to the International Rose Test Garden...

International Rose Test Garden

This free stop is a really pretty and unique place in the City of Roses. There are a few different gardens together, one of which was spearheaded my Mrs. Pittock. A stroll through every color of rose makes for a super pretty place for a casual walk and any insta-background colored flora you could possibly need.


This sandwich shop was near our hotel and caught my eye on lists of best foodie spots in Portland. From the sandwiches to the side dishes, this food was just magical. The rosemary Parmesan fries were in the top fries I've ever had in my life, and the potato salad was like a straight up twice baked potato. My sandwich, the Pork Meatball Banh Mi was so good I almost cried when I got so full that I couldn't eat most of the other half.


This was a spot on our list I was really excited about checking out. We wanted to stop by for a quick breakfast, only to find that they don't open until 10:00. Luckily, Courier Coffee was located next door and we grabbed some java while we waited til 10. We were greeted with an extensive tea menu, a and case of pastries and cakes packed with lovely and interesting creations since we were still too early for the lunch menu. Everything here was so quirky and so well executed from the mismatched china to the rustic appearance of the food. And, man was the food well done. We may or may not have had a black pepper cheesecake for breakfast. We did.

Portland Underground Tour

After learning so much on our Seattle Underground Tour, we decided we wanted to check out the Portland Underbelly tour (most of which is not actually underground, more about the seedy past of the city). Walking around, we learned a lot about the city's history, from its early days as a port town to how it came to get the vibe it has today. It was a couple of hours long, but I'd definitely recommend checking it out if you have a free afternoon.

Photos copyright Hotel deLuxe

Hotel deLuxe

We had a great stay at our hotel, Hotel deLuxe, which had recently been remodeled and featured a black and white vintage movie star theme. From the grand lobby to the Driftwood Room Bar (featuring an abstract Driftwood sculpture that has been there since 1954), this hotel was a winner.

Cocktail sign photo copyright Punch

Pepe le Moko

After a long day, we had trouble deciding where to go for a small dinner and drinks, so we asked the bartender at our hotel in the Driftwood Room. He recommended Pepe le Moko, and we are so, so glad he did! From the outside, it isn't much, but you are immediately whisked down a flight of stairs into a cozy basement bar that is all about simple good food and drinks. Both of our cocktails were incredibly well done (my amaretto sour was made with egg whites and sour that definitely did not come out of a bottle). Their specialty is oysters, so we had to try those, and they knocked our socks off. The cheese plate was a thing of pure beauty. They may have a fairly small menu, but this is a must-stop for a before or after dinner drink and snack.

Photo copyright Villa Columbia

Hood River

Hood River is a small town outside of Portland, so it's not innnnn Portland, but definitely worth checking out if you have a few days in the area. We stayed in adorable tiny home cabin Airbnb here and were just delighted by this charming town. The population is only 7,000 people, but there are a dozen wineries and breweries each, great little restaurants and shops and the biggest destination for windsurfing in the US. You could definitely spend a couple of days here as a bookend to your Portland trip.

Multnomah Falls

Between Hood River and Portland is a series of waterfalls and trails. We had originally planned to hike some of the trails, but were pretty spent after hiking Mt. Rainier the day before. Luckily, there are at least a few points on the highway where you can see waterfalls without having to hit the trail. These were quick stops, but it made for an amazing drive to Portland.

Much like our days in Seattle, there were places we really wanted to hit but weren't able to due to traffic, reservations, and our schedule. Be sure to check these places out as well though and let me know how they are. We'll definitely have to check them out next time we're there!

Multnomah Whiskey Library
Pok Pok
Broder Nord
Cruzroom Tacos
Pine State Biscuits

What about you, what are your favorite spots in or near Portland?


Monday, August 28, 2017

One Shoulder Plaid

If you've been reading here for any amount of time, you know it's no secret that we love plaid. Therefore, every year around the end of August, I get the itch to start incorporating plaid into my wardrobe. Luckily, I found this one shoulder top that lets me enjoy the summer weather while easing myself into fall! 

I am also really into high waisted denim at the moment. I have a feeling these jeans are going to be in heavy rotation this fall and winter. High waisted denim is the perfect way to balance casual and polished, so it's right up my alley! 

I love a dark wine lip for fall and winter, so I am glad I get to start wearing deep burgundy lipsticks again. I am also loving these heels that I scored during the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. They are by far the comfiest heels I own and literally go with everything! 

How are you incorporating plaid into your summer to fall transitional wardrobe?

Top (sold out, but also love this one, this one and this one)


Friday, August 25, 2017

Wear it Two Ways: Shorts for Fall

Who says shorts have to only be worn in the dog days of summer? This transitional time between summer and fall is a great opportunity to experiment with incorporating your summer pieces into cooler wardrobe ensembles. Either by layering up or taking them to the dark side, we're showing you a couple of the ways you can style shorts for Fall!


I've been loving these scalloped shorts this summer. They're a basic high waist short, but with a super fun unexpected detail around the hem. It's like the least fancy clothing item with a fancy twist. I've been trying to think of ways I could continue to wear them as the weather cools down, and I think they'll do just fine!

There's nothing that says Fall to me like dark, moody colors. Even though it's still pretty warm out, I'm slowly working more and more autumnal color palettes into my ensembles. And nothing says dark and moody like burgundy. 

When I saw this burgundy bardot top with ruched sleeves, I knew I had to make it mine. It's perfect for summer with the airy neckline, but the voluminous sleeves would work equally well at a holiday soiree. 

A black velvet choker and black loafers will definitely be staples of my Fall and Winter wardrobe so I've busted them out here. A hairstyle with lots of braids also seems perfect for a sleek cool weather look. Or maybe I'm just watching too much Game of Thrones? After all, winter is coming. 

Off the Shoulder Top (similar here and here)
Scalloped Denim Shorts (similar)
Sunglasses (similar)


I love pairing shorts with tights and a blazer. It's a great way to wear shorts into the cooler months and is a cool twist on a suit. I went for a slightly nautical look with high waisted shorts that sport sailor buttons on the sides, a striped tee and an ocean blue blazer. 

Black tights are a staple of mine in the fall and winter, so it was a no-brainer to layer them under these shorts. They also help to elongate the leg. ;) 

Silver oxfords are the perfect fall accessory, as is a carry-all tote. Throw on a wine lip and you're basically ready to drink cider and carve pumpkins! 

How do you like to incorporate shorts, or other summer staples, into your fall wardrobe? 

Shorts (similar)


Wednesday, August 23, 2017

How to Style a Moto Jacket

Moto jackets are a fall staple and can be extremely versatile. The moto jacket itself comes in all different shapes, sizes, fabrics and colors, so it's super easy to find one that is flattering. The key is to find a jacket that is semi-fitted and hits at the waist, so you don't add extra bulk on top of your outfit. It also helps to keep things streamlined and looking crisp. 

Regardless of what type of jacket you choose, there are a ton of different ways to style your moto jacket. I've pulled together three of my favs below! 

Jumpsuits are still going strong into fall, and the best way to transition them is to throw a jacket or blazer on top! Moto jackets are also a great way to toughen up a formal outfit. It adds just a little bit of edge to an otherwise classic look. You can also layer your jacket on top of a dress for the same effect. 

The easiest, and my favorite, way to wear a moto jacket is with a super casual and laid back look. I love layering my jacket over a sweatshirt and comfy tee in the fall and winter. It's a great way to add dimension to your outfit. Just add jeans or leggings and sneakers and you're set for a day of running errands! 

Last, but certainly not least, you can add your moto jacket on top of a work appropriate outfit! The key here is to keep things balanced. I went with high waisted trousers and a tucked in, colorful blouse. You could also wear skinny trousers and a fitted blouse with your jacket as well. 

What's your favorite way to style a moto jacket? 

Moto jacket (love this one too)
Sweatshirt (love this one)
High waist trousers (similar)


Monday, August 21, 2017

School Prep

Everyone has been posting first day of school pics of their adorable kids going back to school and it's got me feeling all nostalgic. Of back-to-school shopping and shiny new sneakers and getting a new binder you can't wait to decorate to make your own. I've always been into style, and the first day of school had to be the outfit that looked polished and put together, but wasn't too fancy.

On my actual first day of high school, I wore capri pants printed with a black romantic vintage scene and a black top with a back cutout. I felt so cool until as I was walking through the middle of the cafeteria, and the zipper in the back of my pants split open. Thanks to my BFF, who brought a jacket in case it was cold in the building, I had something to tie around my waist for the rest of the day. Still,  wearing a bulky leather jacket around my waist all afternoon was not exactly the perfect first day.

So, in my do-over dreams, if I was going back for my first day now, it would look something like this. It would be polished and classic (gotta make a good impression with the new teachers), but also trendy and fun.

Do you ever get nostalgic for back-to-school days and the excitement leading up to them? Maybe I'll just go pick up a brand new pack of colored pencils to go with my look.

Also, don't mind that spot on my top, I had to give my dog an emergency bath right before I snapped these. Guess even my do-over first day of school didn't work out perfectly either!


Top (similar here and here)
Flares (similar)
Wedges (similar
Sunglasses (similar)


Friday, August 18, 2017

Fall Florals

Dark florals have been a staple of fall for the past several years, and it doesn't look like they are going anywhere anytime soon. Thank goodness, because I love me some dark florals! I've been pairing this gorgeous kimono with distressed jeans and summer tops to make the transition from summer to fall, which I think might be my favorite time of year for outfits. Mixing and matching unexpected pieces really helps to get my creativity flowing. 

I'm really loving these distressed jeans as well. They are beyond comfy and add just the right amount of edge to an otherwise polished outfit. 

I also really love this sculptural bag, also seen here. It adds an elevated, modern touch to any outfit. 

How do you like to transition from summer to fall? 

Tank (similar)

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