Art in Rome

2017, OOTD, travel, personal, art, Rome,
As I mentioned during my Rome recap, the main reason I wanted to visit Rome this time was to see an art exhibition. I have glossed over my passion for art in the past, but I think it’s about time I really talked about it. In May, when I graduated from Wake, I graduated with a degree in art history after writing my thesis on two artists from the 16th and 17th century. I now work in an auction house with aspiration of working in the art world in the future- more to come about this on Friday! To say I love art would be an understatement to say the least. 
2017, OOTD, travel, personal, art, Rome,
Outside my favorite art museum, the Borghese Gallery
But what doest this have to do with an art exhibition in Rome? Because that is a long flight for one art exhibition! Well, this particular art exhibition was looking in depth at one of the artists I wrote my thesis on! Her name is Artemisia Gentileschi and she was an amazing artist. In my thesis, I was looking at four of her works in particular and I was able to see all four in this exhibition in Rome! 
2017, OOTD, travel, personal, art, Rome,
Seeing a work from my thesis by Caravaggio
While in Rome, I was able to see one of my other favorite artists, Gian Lorenzo Bernini, and a multitude of paintings that influenced my thesis. All in all, the whole trip was one of those moments where your school world and the real world collide and all of your studies and hard work make sense. Definitely more on Artemisia and art in general in the future! Until next time, XO 

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Sparkles and Neon

2017, spring, OOTD, travel, Rome, pink, neon, sparkly, J.Crew,
For me, spring and summer clothes are all about neons and sparkles. An outfit just doesn’t seem complete without one or the other, or in this case, both! 
2017, spring, OOTD, travel, Rome, pink, neon, sparkly, J.Crew,
My general rule for both of these is to keep it under control. I love using neon as a statement pop of color against an otherwise neutral outfit. This bag and belt are perfect to throw on and give an otherwise cute, but boring outfit that extra oomph. I also try and keep my neon to one color. Two hot pink accent items are ok, but you don’t want to add neon yellow in the mix too. It’s too much and you’ll end up looking like an 80s highlighter.
2017, spring, OOTD, travel, Rome, pink, neon, sparkly, J.Crew,
As difficult as it is, moderation is also key for sparkles. I like to keep it to one section. If my necklace or jewelry in general is sparkly, no need to have a sparkly bag too. Same goes for if my shirt is sparkly. I will still wear jewelry, but it might be more subdued.
2017, spring, OOTD, travel, Rome, pink, neon, sparkly, J.Crew,
Well, now that we’ve talked about fashion a little, let’s talk more about Rome. Our second day, Sunday, might have been our busiest day of the whole trip. We walked so much and saw so many amazing sites. We started at the Colosseum and did all of that, the Forum (which is right beside the Colosseum and there is only one ticket for both), and the Palatine Hill (you have to walk through the Forum to get to the top of the Hill). A definite must see if you’ve never been to Rome.
2017, spring, OOTD, travel, Rome, pink, neon, sparkly, J.Crew,
After lunch, we went to an art exhibition. This might sound crazy for the non-art obsessed readers out there, but the main reason I wanted to go to Rome last week was to see this particular art exhibition. It featured an artist named Artemisia Gentileschi, who happens to be one of the artists I wrote my thesis on! I had only seen one of her works previously and all of her works I discussed in my thesis were in this show! To say it was incredible would be an understatement and I ended up going to see it twice! It was one of those moments where life seems to align for just a second and everything all seemed to work out perfectly. It made me want to write another thesis too! 
2017, spring, OOTD, travel, Rome, pink, neon, sparkly, J.Crew,
We finished up the day visiting the Spanish Steps and the Trevi Fountain. The Trevi Fountain is awesome during the day, but I would recommend you visit at least once after dark because it is lit up and looks magical at night. We didn’t stop moving all day it seemed, but it was a fabulous day. Until next time, XO 

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Home Again Home Again

Hello all! I am writing this somewhere over the Atlantic as we fly back to the US from Rome. I can’t believe it’s already Thursday and we are already heading home. It has been a whirlwind week, but so amazing. It was so nice to be back in Rome, I had missed the city after living there for a month! 
One of our first full days, we visited almost all of the sites of ancient Rome. We were exhausted, but had so much fun! 
Kate and I had so much fun, as you might have seen from my instagram, but man, we did not stop for a second. Kate had never been to Rome, so I wan’t to make sure she saw all of the sights, plus I had quite a few art exhibition I wanted to see before coming home. To make sure we squeezed everything in, we really had to be efficient with our time, which was easy after planning our days in advance. Here is how we managed to see almost every major tourist attraction in Rome in five days without killing ourselves.
Pizza was a huge part of this experience as I ate it almost everyday. All of the ingredients are always so fresh and even the simplest pizza is delicious
The real key to our success was our location. We booked an Air BnB, which I highly recommend in Rome because you can get a great deal, in the heart of the city, almost spitting distance from the Pantheon. This put our home base in the middle of the city center, so most things were only a 15 minute or less walk away. 
The highlight of this trip for me was the art. This statue is one of my favorite pieces and it was amazing being able to finally see it in person! 
With our home base figured out, we basically picked a direction or a neighborhood to go in each day. This way, our activities throughout the day were fairly close together and we weren’t crisscrossing the city between sites. 
This was my face a lot of days, whenever I got to see a new piece of art. The art history nerd in me was fan-girling the entire time to say the least. 
To make this neighborhood plan work, it is really important to create a basic itinerary ahead of time so that you determine what you want to see in each neighborhood. Then, you don’t have to backtrack and you can see everything you want. This is pretty easy to do in Rome as a lot of sites are clustered together. For example, the Vatican and Castel Sant’Angelo are very close to each other and easy to do in one day. On the other hand, the Colosseum, Palantine Hill, and the Forum are also all close together and you can buy a ticket for all three for one rate. You don’t necessarily have to plan every day down to the hour, but having a general idea of what you want to do on each day can be extremely helpful.
Another highlight of this trip was the gelato. It always made the perfect afternoon snack and it is so fun experimenting with new flavor combinations! 
In addition to the planning what day you want to visit sites, a lot of the main sites have odd hours, random days they are closed, or really long lines for tickets. With the hours, simply looking things up ahead of time can save you a big headache and make your days move smoother. For the lines, the only place we really noticed this was the Vatican museums. However, if you payed five extra euros, you could buy your tickets online beforehand and virtually skip all of the lines. I would highly recommend this as the line to buy tickets looked to take a couple of hours and we walked right in. Definitely worth the five extra euros! 

After living in Rome, this city will always be near and dear to me. There is just something about a city with that much history and art that is overwhelming and magical. Our trip was absolutely amazing and I couldn’t have asked for a better travel partner. If you have any questions about visiting Rome or about our trip, please comment or email me! I would love to answer all of your questions. Until next time, XO 
This trip was absolutely amazing, but it would not have been the same without my best friend Kate. Thank you for letting me drag you around to all of my art exhibitions! You were the best travel companion! 

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And Off We Go!

travel, personal, 2017, Hello all! As I mentioned yesterday, I have some very exciting pieces of news that I will be sharing over the next couple of weeks, and the first one we are talking about today! On Friday, I will be setting off for an adventure in Rome with my best friend, Kate! I am so excited to be going back to Italy where I am just going to look at art and eat pizza and gelato all day! Not to worry, I will be posting all about my activities and there will be lots of pictures of food! 
In the meantime, I wanted to talk a little about packing. Packing can be very hard and there is no secret tip on the perfect way to pack because it is all dependent on your style and the trip itself. But, I wanted to share some of my tips that always work for me.
1. The key to bringing the most stuff, but not the most bags is making use of your space. For me, that first means rolling my clothes. This saves space and also prevents creases. Secondly, make use of your shoes and purses. I always store socks, scarves, jewelry, and other small items in my packed shoes and purses. This prevents wasting that space and helps keep me organized once I arrive.
2. Really, if you aren’t traveling somewhere you know it will be hot, layering is key. To layer successfully, there are 2 main aspects: 
– Make sure most of the things you are bringing match. This doesn’t mean you can only wear neutrals, just make sure the color palettes mesh well. That way, if it is freezing, you can easily add another layer.
– The second piece of this is outerwear. In Rome, the highs are in the low 60s, but at night it’ll be in the low 50s. So I am bringing a warmer coat that is water-proof to help with wind and potential rain, my fuzzy vest to keep me cozy, a blanket scarf, and then light layers and sweaters. That way, if it gets warmer during the day, I can take off layers, but I also won’t freeze.
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I am so excited about this trip as I am long overdue for a vacation. If you have any suggestions for things we should do in Rome, make sure to comment below. Until next time, XO 

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Exploring D.C.

Homemade poptarts! 
The awesome bookstore
Julia’s Kitchen

Hello from D.C.! It has been a crazy fun adventure so far filled with museums, good food, and lots of walking. Some of my favorite things so far have been exploring Eastern Market, visiting the National Gallery of Art, and seeing Julia Child’s kitchen. I had never been to Eastern Market before and outdoor markets are one of my favorite things so I had a ball. Plus we went to this incredible book store that was a total fire hazard but was such a quirky hole in the wall. The National Gallery was obviously amazing. There were so many incredible works and I fan girled over art the entire time. A dream day for me! Finally, today we went to the Museum of American History where they have Julia Child’s kitchen. Julia was obviously an awesome cook, but she also personalized her kitchen. She was very tall so she had everything raised to make things easier for her, which I thing is one of the coolest things. I have always loved Julia and my mom and her are the main reasons I wanted to be a chef for so long. I also love that she personalized her kitchen. The kitchen is one of the main places that I notice my left-handedness and I would love to personalize my kitchen so it is left-handed. Maybe one day! XO

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Met Gala 2016…Manus x Machina

The Met Gala always has incredible red carpets and this year was no exception. The theme, Manus x Machina, looks at the relationship between handmade and mechanized fashion and attendees all had creative outfits to fit with the theme. Here are a couple of my favorites! 

Blake Lively is always someone I look out for on red carpets and the Met Gala was no exception. With her newly reveled baby bump covered in Burberry, her look was classic and flawless. 

Claire Danes looked like Cinderella and then revealed that her dress also glowed. I was speechless! Such an incredible dress that fit perfectly with the theme. 

I think Emma Watson is one of the best dressed people out there and her dress was not only stunning but also made entirely of recycled or sustainable materials!  

I loved Gigi and Zayn’s futuristic/ robotic look. 
Today I arrived in Washington D.C. with two of my best friends for a pre- graduation girls week! Get ready for lots of pictures and updates on all of our adventures! XO 

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New York, New York

Yesterday was our last day in the Big Apple and what a fabulous trip we had! Great food, lots of art, and exploring are the perfect recipe for a great trip for me. Traveling and exploring new places is one of my great joys in this life and I love anytime I am able to do so. School starts back again tomorrow and I am in the final haul before graduation. What a wonderful way to start the last quarter of senior year. XO 
P.S. Am I an outfit repeater? Yes…but some outfits are worth repeating! 

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Empire State of Mind

My favorite breakfast…a chocolate croissant and Earl Grey tea

Today was Met Day and I think I might have died and gone to heaven. The Metropolitan Museum of Art is absolutely incredible and a must see when you visit. We also went to the World Trade Center today and the views were incredible. I will post some of the pictures tomorrow. So far, New York is wonderful and I already can’t wait to come back. XO 

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Welcome to New York

Hello from New York! It has already been an incredible trip and we have only been here for a day and a half! We flew up yesterday morning and then spent the afternoon at MoMA. Maybe it’s just because I am an art history nerd, but I absolutely adored it and I can’t wait to go back! Natalie took that awesome picture of me obsessing over the Monet. Today, we went to the Frick, which is such an interesting and incredible museum and experience. I would definitely recommend it to anyone coming up here. We also walked down the High Line and hung out in Chelsea/ the Meat Packing District. So far, everything has been fun and exciting and I can’t wait for tomorrow.
I have to say though, I am super proud of myself for packing for this trip in a carry on. Secret to my success? Layering and being a repeat skirt/shoe offender. Until tomorrow XO

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Golfing in Costa Rica

Hello! I am back in America, but I still have more pictures from Costa Rica! Let me tell you, we almost didn’t make it out of the country…we had to take this sketchy, tiny little plane, but we made it! Every day in Costa Rica was an adventure. On our last full day, Dad and I went golfing. Well, let me rephrase, I drove the golf cart and Dad golfed, but we had a wonderful day and there were some incredible views! The first photo might be one of my new favorite summer outfits, especially after wearing it on the golf course. It felt so vintage and 60s country club! I loved it! But it is definitely winter here in North Carolina. Before we go back to being bundled up in sweaters and scarfs, here are a couple more warm weather pictures! XO

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