Oh hey there Summer! I cannot believe we are halfway through the Summer season. While it feels like it just began, I also am so tired of the heat and humidity…bring on the cooler temps! Until then though, I finally got around to launching the Summer Issue of the The Graceful Guide! (I know, I am little late, but better late than never, right?) Anyways, I am so happy to finally share this new issue with you guys because it is full of things that I currently have my heart (and pocketbook) wrapped up in…house stuff!
As the temperatures begin to rise, I can feel the excitement surrounding summer time. As I prepare for what might be my favorite season of the year, there are a few things I have to make sure I have ready in my closet. With swimwear and easy summer dresses at the top of the list, I also have to secure one more item for the Louisiana heat…a good pair of sandals. Once that summer heat rolls in, sandals are BY FAR the best route to go down here in the bayou. The humidity is real so keeping my feet locked up in my lace-ups is just not something I am interested in. Thankfully, Zappos has SO MANY great options to choose from, including these Donald Pliner platforms!
I cannot even begin to tell you how excited I am for my anniversary getaway. Not only because I love to travel and explore with my hubs, but because the weather in Louisiana has been SO dreary lately…I need some sun! So with that in mind, I have so many things that I want to share with you guys to help you transition into Spring and Summer, and I will finally be able to do that on this trip. With that being said, you may have already seen the new video on Instagram (yep, I made my IGTV debut), where I rounded up most of the items I was packing for our getaway. I wanted to create an easy place for you all to shop so if you keep scrolling, I have linked everything from the video (and some more!) below!
I have to say, I have truly stepped out of my comfort zone this summer and worn some serious color. I am sure you can attest to this if you have been around for a while because I was always pretty good at sticking to my neutrals. I don't know what has gotten in to me, but I have felt so inspired to break out the colorful pieces...and I love it!
IT'S SUMMERTIME! I have literally been singing praises for the warm weather (except now it is storming outside) and LOVING the sunshine! While we have been super busy the past few weekends, I have wanted nothing more than to lay by the pool. Well, I would like to be at the beach but I won't be picky right now. Anyways, the pool is definitely doing its job as my tan lines are out in full force! (True story, it is probably one of my favorite feelings to be tan/have tan lines I guess because I always grew up with them from tennis. Although, they are way less awkward now!) BUT, with the summer heat, I couldn't help but put together another swimwear round-up because there are SO many good suits out there right now! Keep reading to see more of my favs right now and hopefully you are able to enjoy the sun also!
It is official guys...summer is here! It has been SO hot (almost unbearable) here in Louisiana but I am actually okay with it! You know, summertime means a lot of things for me that I love...1) my birthday, 2) pool time and 3) VACATION! How can I complain?? No but seriously, there are just some things I love to do in the summer so I figured I would round up some of my favs and share them here!
True story: I love a set. And by set I mean top & skirt, top & shorts, or even a good suit. I can remember when I was in college and I had to buy my first suit for an interview. I had NO idea what I was looking for and I can promise you I did not love many of them. I mean, it is hard to find a suit that is flattering and at the time, I wanted no part of it. Thankfully though, my style (and my maturity) has evolved and I have come to love a good suit. I have several options that I wear for work, some with pencil skirts and some with trousers, and I love how clean they are. With that being said though, I have started to work the "fun" suit into my everyday wardrobe. Something that is funky/casual that I can wear to dinner or a casual lunch meeting it perfect for me, so when I found this Chriselle x JOA suit at Nordstrom...I was in love!
So if you know me, then you know I love the beach. Truly, I am happiest when I am in a swimsuit, with my toes in the sand, sun bearing down on me. I was born in July so I have always sworn that is why I am such a beach bum. My mom never missed a day laying out when she was pregnant with me, then I spent nearly every summer at the beach growing up. I mean, it was ingrained in me to love the salty air. And boy do I love it. So recently, we ventured to Palm Beach for a few days to attend my friends wedding. Thankfully, I was able to spend a few short minutes in my bathing suit, and took full advantage of it. As I am now planning summer excursions though, I have found myself doing a lot of swimwear shopping and thought this would be the perfect time to do a little round up for you here! Keep reading to see some of my favorites right now, as well as other styles I love!
If you are an avid follower of 'Gracefully Taylored' then you have seen my recent beach excursions. We went down to Tampa in the end of June, then Jon Luke and I went to 30A for Labor Day weekend. I have to say, it is seriously my happy place. There is just something about having my toes in the sand, smelling that salty air...FAVORITE. Not sure if I have shared this before, but my dad's side of the family lives down in Tampa so I grew up taking vacations to see them regularly. I think that is how the love started. Not long after I was born, my mom and dad took me down there to see the grandparents...and the rest is history.
There are some places in this world that I could get lost in forever. Obviously I am a huge fan of Greece and Italy, but I recently discovered a little area called 30A. Yes, I just visited this quiet little strip for the first time during our Labor Day holiday, but I fell in love. I cannot get over how cute each little town was, and am crazy about both Rosemary Beach and Alys Beach. The white buildings, quaint coffee shops and cobble stone like streets stole my heart in Alys Beach and I already want to go back!
Well better late than never right?? I am FINALLY getting around to posting some of my favorite pictures from our trip to Florida back in June (insert the slap your face emoji). We took a day and decided to go sailing and it was SO much fun! I really is hard to disappoint me when there is sunshine and ocean air, but this really was a fun experience. Jon Luke and I have sailed before when we went to Greece last year, but this adventure in Florida was fun because we had the boat to ourselves and my dad was with us! Going back through these images definitely has me excited four our last beach rendezvous this weekend...I am just praying for good weather!
You know when you have your eye on something, but you pass because you are trying to be financially responsible? That has been the story of my life lately because we are trying to do better with our budget. Yeah...not my favorite topic but it makes my husband happy to know that I am at least trying to save. With that being said, I saw this dress in the beginning of summer and LOVED everything about it. I really wanted to add it to my collection but the little voice in the back of my head was not feeling it. Well good news!! Just recently I returned to the store where I first saw this dress and it was ON SALE!! Talk about a happy girl. I grabbed it immediately and am so excited because it's perfect. The fit, the color, the tie detail..I love it all.
So if you have been following along on Instagram this week, you have probably seen that I have had a LONG week. Like...long week. Things have just been super busy and I feel like I have been non-stop since we returned from Alaska. I mean, two weeks home and I feel like I am still catching up! Anyways...I am so glad it is finally Friday, and am ready for a fun getaway weekend with Darian in New Orleans! I know it is more travel, but it is an easy drive and it will be fun to try new things in NOLA!
When is comes to summer, there are a few things I know I need to have in my closet. First, a good pair of white denim. You can never go wrong with white jeans in the summer. From cropped, to flared, I love breaking out my white jeans during the summer months. The white against my tan skin...I love it. Second, off-the-shoulder tops. This silhouette is one that I have become so fond of over the years. There is something about showing a little shoulder that just screams summer time to me and I love it. Finally, it is important to me to have a good summer handbag. Whether it be white, or a bright color, I tend to step out a little bit in the handbag department during the summer because, why not right? Having these summer essentials in my closet makes dressing in this Louisiana heat way more fun!
Growing up, I will admit, I had a lot of insecurities. Being a tennis player, I was very muscular and always thought I was "thick." I was negative about almost every part of my body, then to top it off I had TERRIBLE tan lines. One area I always avoided was my back. For some reason I was always concerned about what my back/backside looked like. Granted, I did not wear a lot of revealing things in general when I was younger, but swimwear or formal dresses...it was always a struggle. I never figured out if it was really the drastic racer back tan line that threw me for a loop, or if I thought I looked too muscular, but seriously...was never a fan. BUT, I think that has all changed! With a mixture of becoming comfortable with my body and developing a deeper sense of fashion, I have come to embrace my backside and LOVE it! Open back or low cut, I feel strong and confident now when I can show off a little skin!
When the Louisiana heat takes over, my desire to get dressed slowly diminishes. I will admit, I do not enjoy being hot and sticky and my clothing plays a large role in that. As I have said many times before, the humidity here in Louisiana is REAL. Like really real. It is unlike anything I have ever experienced so really, I have had to get used to that sticky feeling. But with that being said, I have slowly added pieces to my closet that help in that heat and this wrap dress is definitely a perfect option.
With the summer heat here, I am constantly looking for tops that work well with the warmer temperatures. From sleeveless, to off-the-shoulder, to lightweight, to one shoulder, I am always on the hunt for those warm weather options. One style that I have been drawn to lately is the open back styles because (1.) they help with airflow and (2.) they are super sassy! I love how this open back trend can come in many forms, and this top in particular is one that I will wear all summer long!
As summer draws near, I have focused on a few things: building my summer wardrobe and getting a tan. I know that it is terrible that I am focusing on that, but I am being honest. No those are not the only things important to me at the moment, but I am not going to lie, I have been working on both. And with that being said, when I came across the white top and pant set from Nordstrom, I immediately fell in love. The fabric is perfect for summer and I love the shape the high-waisted pants and crop top give me!