the beautiful things

{things i wore} wrap dress

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The Diane von Furstenberg wrap dress–it's the only piece of iconic fashion that my mother ever mentioned to me growing up. She bought hers (with a blue tulip pattern) for $100 in New York in the seventies and wore it "until it fell apart." I loved the mythology of it all, so for as long as I could remember I wanted one of my own. This one fit the bill nicely: it's the T72 style, one modeled after the original vintage cut (I love the throwback cuff and collar details), in an old now-reissued pattern ("chain link"). It truly wears like a dream, form-fitting, flattering, and as comfortably chic as my mother described it–making it the perfect look for my birthday brunch this past weekend.

________________

T72 Mixed-Print Silk-Jersey Wrap Dress, Diane von Furstenberg [$385similar here]; Leather Stiletto Shoes, Zara [$99, similar here and here]; Saffiano Lux Double-Zip Tote Bag in Black, Prada [shop here] // Thin Gold Band with Bezel Set Diamond, Jennifer Meyer [$175]; X3 Diamond Ring, 18k Gold Diamond Anniversary Band [$1400]; Nails: Essie's 'Licorice'

{things i learned} my three-year blogiversary

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It's hard to believe that it's been three whole years since I decided to put fingers to keys and actually start this blog. The Beautiful Things has become a beautiful thing, truly full of all the things (and people!) that I love. It's made me a more interesting person, one who thinks critically and creatively about all of my choices, past and present. It's also made me bold–less afraid to trust my mind and heart when it comes to my passions. Thank you for support along the way–and here's to many more.

 

{things i did} falling for fall

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As promised, here are some more photos from last weekend's trip south. We've been to Cape May many times but it was definitely different to see the start of fall decorations (how amazing are those black lace "haunted" designs?) in a place typically dedicated to all things beach-y. Dinner was incredible–I'm still thinking about those Greek dips and that artfully-presented crab cake. As great last Saturday and Sunday were though, the next two are set to be even be better: it's my birthday weekend (and this blog's anniversary!), so I'm all set for more celebrations. 

 

 

{things i did} beach throwback

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Last weekend we took a short trip to Cape May, all the way down at the southern tip of New Jersey. There was lots of shopping with a distinctly fall-vibe and great seaside seafood eats–more on both tomorrow–but most memorable was our stroll at dusk on the beach. To start, a wedding was wrapping up so we got watch the party relocate–via trolley!–and were handed a rose as they departed. The weather was perfectly warm and breezy and the sky completely clear. It seemed to be a very fitting way to end our summer–and the perfect opportunity to take some golden hour photos.

 

[my outfit details here]

 

 

{things i covet} fall home decor

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There's a way to decorate for fall that's subtle and elegant. Just like every holiday and season, there are colors and textures that speak volumes on their own without necessitating a turn to cheesiness. So while there's still just a hint of crispness to the air and sunlight is just beginning to soften and fade, check out these fun accents that can start the transformation of your home from summery to cozy (and only begin to hint at spooky)!
 

[clockwise]

'Pumpkin Chai' Reed Diffuser, NEST Fragrances [$38]

Green Glass Pumpkins, Pier 1 [$16.95 - $19.95]

Oversized Ombre Faux Fur Throw in 'Gold', Pier 1 [$79.95 $63.96]

Maple Leaves Garland, Fantastic Craft via Nordstrom [$18]

Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty Hardcover Book, The Metropolitan Museum of Art [$50]

'Moroccan' Frame (4×6), Argento SC [$30 $5.97]

'Talida' Glossy Frame Mirror, Howard Elliott Collection [$362]

Odeurs Royales set of three scented candles, Cire Trudon [$150]

 

{things i made} cream-cheese frosting-filled pumpkin muffins

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Happy Fall! While I'm super sad to see summer go, I'm just as excited for autumn. I'm celebrating the start of my favorite season with this amazingly tasty recipe for pumpkin muffins. They're moist–seriously, they have the mouth-feel of a cake–and are absolutely bursting with spice-infused flavor (I throw my own version of pumpkin pie spice in anything that can support it). I adore desserts with pumpkin as the main ingredient so this is easily my new favorite any-time-of-the-day-treat. The cream-cheese frosting isn't overpowering but rather a "something special" that makes the muffins feel ever-so-slightly decadent. 

_________________________

​3 cups pum
pkin puree

3/4 granulated sugar

4 egg
​s + 1 egg white​
 
9 oz olive oil
 
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 3/4  + 1/3 cups flour
3/4 tsp salt
1.5 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
 
2.5 tsp cinnamon

3/4 tsp cloves 

3/
​4​ tsp
 ​nutmeg 
 
​2 ​tsp
​ ​
​allspice
1 tsp ginger

12 oz
​​
 
raisins 

Cream cheese ​frosting, see below​

 

​1. ​Preheat oven to 325 degrees. 
In 
a large 
bowl, whisk together pumpkin puree, sugar, eggs, oil, and vanilla.
 
2. Sift together flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, 
​and spices​
 over the wet mixture. 
Whisk together until just blended. 
Add raisins and fold until blended.
 
​3. Fill two greased 12-cup muffin trays evenly with batter. Bake for 25 minutes
​ (c​heck with a toothpick
​ for done-ness)
Allow muffins to cool for
​at least 30 minutes.
 
​4. For cream cheese filling: 
​soften 
​4 ounces low
​-​fat cream cheese 
​and mix with 4 ounces strained Greek yogurt. Stir in ​1 teaspoon vanilla
​ and​ about 
​a 1/
​4​ cup of powdered sugar
 (t​
aste
​-​test
​ and adjust as necessary). ​ Punch a small but deep hole into the center of each muffin and pipe 
or spoon ​frosting into the center
 and ​finish with a small rosette
​ or peak​.

{things i wore} long-sleeved maxi dress

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If you've been following along with my Instagram account, you'll have seen that we decided to send off summer in style with a trip down the shore to Cape May, our favorite beach destination in New Jersey. I absolutely adore day-tripping when it's a bit cooler than sweltering and that's just how it was this weekend. Dressing up is more fun when you can wear heavier items and not worry about sweating through them. This dress was a clearance rack score at at Old Navy–it's sold-out now–but it's perfect to style as the seasons change.

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Long-Sleeved Maxi Dress, Old Navy [here and here] // Slim Rubber Flip Flops, Havaianas [$26] // Rocco Duffel in Black with Pale Gold Hardware, Alexander Wang [$895// Threadbare Ring in Yellow Gold, Catbird Jewelry [$44] // Thin Gold Band with Bezel Set Diamond, Jennifer Meyer [$175] // Gold & Pavé Diamond Tiny Disc Ring, Sydney Evan [$375]; Threadbare Ring in Yellow Gold, Catbird Jewelry [$44] // X3 Diamond Ring, 18k Gold Diamond Anniversary Band [$1400] // 'Take it Outside' Nail Polish, Essie [here]

 

{things i did} dinner at a voce columbus

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The last time I ate at A Voce (in the Time Warner Center, Columbus Circle) was over a year ago (check out some Instagram shots here). That trip had been for lunch, and I distinctly remember claiming everything I had was the "best ever"–the best bread and dip I'd ever had (focaccia and fresh ricotta), the best salad I'd ever had (lobster, chick peas, and arugula), and the best dessert (a hazelnut chocolate tart). So when my boyfriend and I decided to stop in again, this time for a late dinner after some shopping. I had very high hopes–and I wasn't let down. The service here is top-notch–everyone is friendly, helpful, and knowledgeable–and the food is stellar. Check out my Instagram account for more details on the food (it's hard to pick a favorite flavor of the night, but I think the ravioli win). Have a great weekend! 

 

[clockwise]

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

 

{things i covet} spluge or save: leather, maxi, suede

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Like I've said before, I hate retiring my favorite maxi looks as the weather cools down. The great thing is you don't really have to–all it takes are some good staple pieces and lots of creative layering. Here's a perfectly fall-appropriate look for a lot and a whole lot less (seriously: it's $2190 vs. $140!).

{splurge}

on the left:

Collection Quilted Leather Biker Jacket, J.Crew [$1250]

Cotton-Jersey Midi Dress, Rick Owens [$360

Slouchy Suede Ankle Boots, Isabel Marant [$548.71

{save}

on the right:

Quilted Faux Leather Moto Jacket, Aero [$100 $50 or similar]

Mossimo Knit Maxi Dress in Black [$20 $10.48]

 Natasha Suede Ankle Boots, Sole Society [$80]

{things i covet} try, buy, spy

try

by

spy

 

{try}

gmail hacks are actually very helpful [read]

a way to weather-proof leather boots just in time for fall [shine]

many caloric desserts in one: the hot fudge brownie sundae pie [recipe]

{buy}

matilde suede pumps, aquazzura [$695]

embroidered moto jacket, marchesa voyage [$595]

gold & black diamond thin ring, jennifer meyer [$175]

{spy}

a list of celebrities who once worked for other celebrities [read]

classics-in-the-making: jewelry designers that you should know now [drool]

the new it-shoe by bionda castana that everyone is wearing [see]

 




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