spring

Spring Chambray

Jackie Tara Blog - Spring Chambray
Jackie Tara Blog - Spring Chambray
Jackie Tara Blog - Spring Chambray
Jackie Tara Blog - Spring Chambray
Jackie Tara Blog - Spring Chambray
Jackie Tara Blog - Spring Chambray
Jackie Tara Blog - Spring Chambray
Jackie Tara Blog - Spring Chambray
Jackie Tara Blog - Spring Chambray
Jackie Tara Blog - Spring Chambray

You gotta love spring. It’s sunny and warm one minute and then it’s windy and cold the next. The tonic I prescribe for spring’s moodiness is a layered look that can adapt to quick weather changes. After watching the Liverpool game one Sunday morning at the Queen Vic (one of our favorite places to watch!), Bryan and I took a walk around my old H Street neighborhood.

I have (surprisingly) been sticking to the limited items of my capsule wardrobe, so mixing, matching, and layering in new ways is key. I have also been layering my simple gold Stella & Dot jewelry to ‘chic’ things up a bit since I’ve been trending toward casual looks lately. I layered my Target tee with a tried and true GAP chambray. I have to tell you, I picked up three of these tees from Target and they are the most comfortable tees I’ve ever worn. They were (and still are!) on sale, and you know I never pass up a good sale.

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Outfit details:

Target Tee on sale!
GAP Chambray similar
GAP Black Denim
GAP Lace-up Ballet Flats similar
Stella & Dot Crosby Hobo – Geo Tile on sale!
Stella & Dot Jewelry and Sunnies

Photos by Bryan Wallace

Fringe Details

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The leap from my last style post to this one is kind of crazy. Not too long ago we had snow on the ground and one-digit temperatures and now it’s literally 80 degrees outside and I’m not one ounce sorry about it. If you follow me on Instagram you may have noticed that I cleaned out my closet to a capsule wardrobe in a valiant (I think) attempt to downsize and simplify my life. Having a wide selection of clothing choices can be satisfying and fun, but lately I’ve been feeling the endless options weighing me down instead of liberating my creativity. My new capsule system has also forced me – in the best way possible – to be creative in a different way: mixing and matching my limited selections to create a new outfit each day. Without getting too much into it (yet), I’m really enjoying my capsule wardrobe thus far, and I’m excited to switch out to my spring selections!

Among the best spring 2016 fashion trends – stripes, ballet flats, floral patterns, moto jackets, monochromatic white (all things I can get behind) – is fringe. Previously associated with western movies and 70’s boho-chic, fringe has made a comeback in almost every shape and form. Shoes, vests, bags, jewelry, you name it: they are going to have fringe this season. Last weekend I paired some fringe details with what I like to call “double denim,” more fondly known as a Canadian tuxedo, which is also trendy again (go figure). I kind of love the cyclical nature of fashion. If you hang onto those key pieces long enough, they are sure to come back in style.

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Outfit details:

Nordstrom Chambray similar
Fringe Vest similar at UO and Express
GAP 1969 Jeans
Audrey Brooke Suede Wedges similar at DSW, with fringe!
Stella & Dot Essential Fringe Necklace
Vintage Stachel

Photos taken by Bryan Wallace

Wedding Wear: May

Jackietara blog - Wedding Wear: May
Jackietara blog - Wedding Wear: MayJackietara blog - Wedding Wear: May
Jackietara blog - Wedding Wear: MayJackietara blog - Wedding Wear: MayJackietara blog - Wedding Wear: May
Jackietara blog - Wedding Wear: MayJackietara blog - Wedding Wear: May

I’m heading to California this weekend for the wedding of two of my dear friends, Ava and Brian. Ava is from Santa Cruz, a lovely, laid back, shoreline city, and the venue location for their May 31st wedding. They are getting married and celebrating at Highlands Park, nestled in the mountains just north of Santa Cruz. Knowing that it will be an outdoor wedding that continues into the evening hours in a place that feels the winds over Monterey Bay (I can feel them already…), I wanted to find a dress that could transition from day to night and that would be comfortable dancing in, because let’s be real, we all know I will be getting my groove on.

I found the perfect dress shopping online at Zara – it’s an above-the-knee cream-based dress with a marsala and yellow floral print. It’s SO cute and perfect for a spring event. Oh, and it has pockets. You can never go wrong with a dress that has pockets (just trust me on this one). Dresses with pockets are everything. Since the dress has more going on than my typical monochromatic dress, I’ve decided to go minimal on jewelry. I’m still debating between my favorite Stella & Dot ear jackets and classic pearl stud. Decisions, decisions… Don’t worry, I’ll let you know what happens, and I can’t wait to share photos from the wedding!

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Zara Floral Dress
Stella & Dot Eva Ear Jackets

Photography by Paul B. Jones

Relaxed

Jackietara blog - Relaxed
Jackietara blog - Relaxed Jackietara blog - Relaxed Jackietara blog - RelaxedJackietara blog - RelaxedJackietara blog - Relaxed
Jackietara blog - RelaxedJackietara blog - RelaxedJackietara blog - RelaxedJackietara blog - Relaxed

I don’t know about you, but my spring went by entirely WAY too fast. Who told May that it was okay for 90 degree weather already?! It happens every year, but it never ceases to shock me when all of the blossoms are gone, trees are green, and it’s hot outside half way through the month. I also never seem to remember how busy this time of year can be (currently making a mental note for 2016) – summer is a whirlwind, but gearing up for the summer is just as crazy… which is why it’s important to take a moment and relax. B is constantly telling me that I need to slow down and “smell the roses” and I’m finally learning to take time (even if it’s just a few minutes) for myself.

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Stella & Dot Anchor Voyager Cuff
Stella & Dot Eva Ear Jacket
Stella & Dot Rebel Pendant
VS Yoga Pants

Photos c/o Bryan Wallace

Blossoms & Kimonos

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 I can’t get enough of spring in D.C. I’ve walked down to the tidal basin twice with B recently, and the second long walk was just as fun as the first (sore legs and blisters aside). I threw on a great kimono that I picked up for my Morocco trip and my favorite Gap hat for a little shade (we all know how my pale skin reacts to too much sun…) to join other locals and visiting tourists downtown. It’s amazing how quickly things are changing. Just two weeks ago and the cherry blossoms were at full bloom, bright white and pink everywhere, and now most trees have turned a lovely light shade of green with little to no blossoms.

I feel myself itching to go outside while sitting in the office during the week, so I’ve been taking full advantage of outdoor activities – brunching, walking around the neighborhood, and getting back into my running routine with B – on weekends. And to clarify, I do consider brunching an “outdoor activity.”

Outdoor activity: leisure pursuits engaged in the outdoors (according to Wikipedia).

Enough said.

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South Moon Under Kimono on sale!
Gap Jeans
Gap Panama Hat | similar
Stella & Dot Rebel Cluster Necklace
Stella & Dot On The Mark Necklace

Delicate Blush

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I have never been much of a pastel person, but this Valentine’s Day I put myself in a delicate blush dress that I found in a second hand store and a blush and gold petal necklace from Stella & Dot’s new spring line. There’s something about pastel tones that whisper (because screaming would not be very lady like) femininity, and I have very much been gravitating toward that ethereal color palette lately. Normally I’m a bright blue, crisp white, and classic black kind of gal, but I think I may make a little room in my heart for blush, aquamarine, lavender, and all things feminine this spring.

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Thrifted French Connection Dress | similar
Stella & Dot Birdie Necklace

Photography by Paul B. Jones

Parka Happy

Parka Happy - Jackietara blog Parka Happy - Jackietara blog

I think I might be in love… with my parka.  I went spring shopping with my mom a few weeks ago and felt like a kid in a candy store gawking at all of the new colors, styles, and trends of this season.  An item that was on my list before we even set out on our shopping adventure was a green parka jacket.  I kept seeing them on Pinterest and around town, and thought it would be the perfect addition to my spring wardrobe.  Trench, move over!  My parka’s casual trendiness makes me happy, and keeps me dry on rainy days.

The day T and I took these photos was one of those days that was just plain old grey and nasty.  Not rainy, but windy and unsettling.  We had plans that night to celebrate our friend’s birthday at a “micro grant” dinner called CRAVE in Old Town, Alexandria.  The premise of the dinner was amazing: panelists would speak to you about the projects they were working on and how they could use your contribution, then all of the guests would vote on their favorite platform.  The winner received all of the proceeds to complete their project, so it was a great feeling to help someone do something great [big or small] in the community.

We took a pit stop at the Bethesda metro station tunnel on the way to dinner so Teddy could take some photos of the art installation, “Tunnel Vision,” for a Washington Post Express article.  My favorite was the painting of the red bicycle.

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Outfit details:
Zara khaki parka
Gap high-waisted jeans
Zara graphic black & white tee
Audrey Brooke black booties
Madewell gold bangles and knot ring

Photography by Teddy Wolff

Jackietara

Wedding Wear: March

Wedding Wear: March - Jackietara blog
Wedding Wear: March - Jackietara blog
Wedding Wear: March - Jackietara blog
Wedding Wear: March - Jackietara blog
Wedding Wear: March - Jackietara blog

Wedding season.  The season of love and romance, old traditions paired with the new, gorgeous color palettes, and of course the best season [and reason] to put on that fabulous dress.  A dear colleague of mine is getting married this Saturday in Clifton, Virginia to the love of her life and I can’t wait to witness their “I Do’s” and share in their celebration!  What I am not looking forward to so much is the sub 50 degree weather and rain showers that are sure to make an appearance.  It’s March for Pete’s sake, isn’t it supposed to be NICE outside?!  But the wedding will commence and, hey, at least the rain will hide our tears… of joy of course!  I am surely in for a good cry.

Wedding Wear: March - Jackietara blog Wedding Wear: March - Jackietara blog Wedding Wear: March - Jackietara blog
Wedding Wear: March - Jackietara blog

With this silly transitional weather ahead, I am going to go with a black and white patterned dress I found on ModCloth.  It’s a neutral option that’s not quite “wintery” but not too “springy” either, which is great because I can continue to wear this sleeveless dress into warmer spring days, and maybe even the beginning of summer, too!  I do want some pop of color against my black, white, and grey ensemble, so I luckily purchased a little neon number in time from a Banana Republic online sale!

Outfit details: dress: ModCloth // cape: vintage // necklace: Banana Republic similar

Photography by Teddy Wolff

Jackietara

 

Life is [hectic, but] beautiful

Where have you been all my life?!  Well, my answer lately is “working late in a deserted office” or “cleaning and organizing my apartment.”  It’s that time of year when everything speeds up, double time, and I feel like I’m standing still with the world around me whirling around me like a twister.  Despite everything going on in my life, I feel restless and an urge to clean and purge, to start anew.  It must be something about spring that just gets you going.

Life is beautiful - Jackietara blog

My most recent projects have been redecorating my outdated bathroom and creating a gallery wall above the couch in the living room.  Somehow I took on both of these projects at once.  Just a quick trip to home goods with a couple gal pals, and I was in deep.  I finally got rid of all of my navy towels, shower curtain, and bathroom accessories that I’ve had since college [it was time for them to go] and replaced them with a new sea glass motif.  Even more exciting, I got rid of our terrible “over the toilet organizer” from Target and replaced it with a hanging basket, which makes our tiny bathroom seem so much more roomy [trust me, it’s the little things]!

The gallery wall project is something that has been in the back of my mind for at least a year.  We two lonely photographs on our wall that were just begging for some company, so I watched A Beautiful Mess’ gallery wall tutorial and got to it.  I was also inspired by their DIY art collection blog post and decided to mod podge and paint an empty canvas – what a great outlet for my pent up energy!  Although these projects took up a significant part of my weekend a couple weeks ago, they made me feel incredibly accomplished.  I’m not normally that “handy,” so it was a good feeling!

I can’t say enough how happy I am it’s finally spring.  My list of projects is quickly growing [so I’m glad I got to check two off my list!] and I’m itching to be outside as much as possible.  Sunday brunching, here I come!

Jackietara

Spring To-do List

I love lists and it’s spring, so here is my to-do list for the new season!

1. Go outside!  This “task” may seem like a no-brainer, but working a 9-5 job and then some + teaching makes it hard to get outside during the day.  My goal is to be able to pry myself away from my desk for 10 minutes a day to enjoy the sunshine and get some Vitamin D.

2. “Live it up” and go to brunch.  Brunch has always been something I have viewed as a hoity-toity expensive and frivolous activity.  Having experienced brunch at District Commons and all it’s glory last weekend, I have decided that it’s actually a great way to catch up with friends after a long week, enjoy some comfort food, and have one of my favorite things in the world – mimosas.  I’m going to depart from my usual frugality and go to brunch more often, starting tomorrow ($9 bottomless mimosas at the Argonaut!).

3. Experiment with food.  Not in the Frankenstein or Flubber sense of the word, but to have more of an adventurous spirit while cooking.  Growing up with a French dad I have had it all, from escargot and pate, to venison and Cassoulet.  I am a pretty decent cook and I most certainly have an open mind when it comes to food, so I think it’s time to put the two together.  My first shot this week was making octopus salad (recipe and photos to come!).

4. Discover new music.  I have been listening to NPR’s podcast All Songs Considered a lot lately on my commute to work.  One of my favorites right now is Junip’s new song “Your Life, Your Call,” which reminds me of my best friend’s motto [in reference to all the stupid things that people do], ” it’s not my life.”  Never mind the disturbing video, the song is great.

The Flaming Lips’ new album, The Terror, will be released tomorrow, April 16!  Apparently I have an affinity for disturbing music right now, because The Terror has also been described as being “disturbing” by Wayne Coyne himself.

Another album I am anticipating is Vampire Weekend’s Modern Vampires of the City.  Take a listen to “Diane Young.”

5. See the cherry blossoms.  Although, I think the storm this morning may have undermined by plans to go downtown tomorrow to see them.  This is how I feel about the situation in haiku form:

Pink and white blossoms
Disappear from the old trees
Untimely cruel storm

What are you planning on doing this spring?  Please share!