Summer 2019 Favorites

Generally speaking, this past summer was a whirlwind. My work schedule was packed and we traveled quite a bit domestically for some short and quick trips. 

Below is what I loved and kept me sane during such a hectic time. 

Ylang 49 by Le Labo, $189 for 1.7 fl oz

As I have mentioned before, I’m picky about my floral fragrances but tend to really enjoy white florals. Last summer, my husband and I were visiting one of our local favorite bakeries (pre-Keto), when I noticed that a new Le Labo boutique had opened up across the street. After doing some smelling and purchasing a handful of samples, I discovered that Ylang 49 was by far my favorite. 

The number 49 indicates there are actually 49 individual notes, but the top that I can find listed are: Ylang ylang, Tahitian gardenia, patchouli, oakmoss, vetiver, sandalwood, benzoin. In short, this is not your typical white floral. And one note that is notably missing from this shortened list but comes out nicely on my skin is Anise. It adds a sweetness and spice and dimension – I enjoy wearing this in the summertime and always receive a lot of compliments. 

The Perfume Collector by Kathleen Tessaro, $12 for paperback or Kindle

‘I only ask because this is not a fairy tale, my dear.’ Taking out a long black cigarette holder, Madame Zed fitted a cigarette into it and lit it. She looked across at Grace, staring at her from beneath her heavily lidded dark eyes. ‘You came to me. You wanted to know more. But I can’t change the story to put you at ease.’

If it isn’t obvious, I enjoy smelling things. Spices, Candles, and especially Perfume. It seems my husband and I share this interest and can turn most shopping experiences into a smelling odyssey (so it’s a bit cruel that my right nostril has been congested for the better part of 2.5 years thanks to some pretty severe allergies). 

This love of fragrance has become more pronounced over the last 5 years, and a few years ago I learned of the book, The Perfume Collector. I purchased a copy to read (apparently I purchased 2 copies) and didn’t get around to reading it until just this summer. I started it on our way to DC one weekend in June. I devoured most of it on the round trip flight, and promptly finished it the weekend after we returned home. 

Part historical fiction and part mystery, the story of a secret benefactor is revealed through flashbacks and perfume. It’s a wonderful read, and if Paris in the 40s (and really, any time period) or fragrance interests you – this is for you. 

In case you couldn’t tell, I love this stuff. In addition to the new flavors, I’m all about Mint Chocolate Chip and Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough. You can find Rebel Creamery ice cream at your local store, or alternatively – order online.

This may be TMI, but it’s worth mentioning. A few years ago, I decided to switch to natural deodorant. It took 2 full years to find the right one for me. During that time, I had extended periods wearing Dr. Hauschka’s Rose Deodorant, as well Agent Nateur Holi(stick) before realizing they weren’t working for me. Enter Native Deodorant. It comes in a variety of fragrances, it is super effective, and can now be found in some Target stores. I’ve tried several scents, and most enjoy the Coconut Vanilla and Lavender Rose. I may go crazy this year and order their Pumpkin Spice whenever they release it! P.S. There are usually 20-30% off coupons floating around that can usually be found fairly easily by googling.

Ganni High Neck Eyelet Ruffle Top

If it wasn’t obvious before, I’m a sucker for gorgeous detailed necks, ruffles, and well – blush pink. I suppose I also like for what I wear to make a statement.

I had previously purchased a different version of this top (same designer, different material), and it just didn’t work for me at all. It was too stiff, too big, and too ridiculous, but the softness of the eyelet Cotton makes this Top a bit more relaxed. I wore it to work with high-waisted trousers, and on the weekends with my favorite embroidered jeans and Chanel flap. This top is still available on sale if you hunt for it ($70 at Bergdorf Goodman, $196 on mytheresa), but be warned I sized down. I’m a 6-8 in tops these days (thanks to larger bust), but I’m wearing a 36 here, aka a 4. It also came in black.

I am a huge fan of Ulla Johnson, so it came as no surprise that my go-to summer dress this year was from her Summer collection. It has been released in a handful of colors and prints, but this red is really special. I reached for it any time I just wanted to feel cute, but comfortable – and I even wore it to a wedding. I believe only Net-A-Porter (and Ulla Johnson’s brick and mortar boutiques) carried this version. It is still full-priced, but a part of Net-A-Porter’s promotion of the day – 15% off with code App15.

Perry Mules by Ulla Johnson

Also worth mentioning (and also by Ulla Johnson) are these metallic copper Perry Mules. They were released last Fall just in time for Holiday 2018. I snagged these in a later Winter sale, and wore them all Spring and Summer. The gorgeous copper color is made up of metallic gold, pink, and copper threads.

The position and structure of the bow adds flattering dimension, that makes these easy for my pear-shape to wear with dresses in addition to jeans. If you can find these on Poshmark or eBay, they are well worth the search! They are eye catching, flattering, and comfortable.

Childlike Empress by Femme Fatale

Not your typical nude nail polish. This polish is a special snowflake, with reflects of pink and gold, and some holographic glitter. Unfortunately, my nails are in rough shape – unpolished and broken (August was a rough month), but this was my go-to manicure this summer. It was a part of Femme Fatale’s July 2018 collection, Neverending Story. See swatches on the blog One Hundred Brushes here.

Summer Chills

Every Summer, our local theatre has a tradition of putting on an Agatha Christie play. I’ve made it an August tradition – dress up, have a fancy dinner, and enjoy the murder mystery. This year, they did Murder on the Orient Express, and I somehow managed to snag 2 front row seats.

Honestly, I was slightly concerned I wouldn’t enjoy it since I could never make it through the book and didn’t enjoy the 2 adaptations I’d seen previously (including David Suchet’s version, and I LOVE him as Poirot!). Thankfully, those concerns were unfounded, and both S and I enjoyed the play and the entire experience.

I admittedly was too young to truly appreciate 90210 when it originally premiered, or even during its prime. But, I was aware of it thanks to having 2 (much) older sisters, and picked it up in middle school when FX started playing reruns the summer before I started 6th grade. I happily devoured the entire series (well up until that point) just in time to watch the 10th season when it premiered.

Needless to say, I loved this show and it’s characters (and the 90s music and fashion)! So I was beyond excited when a reboot was announced, and they executed a massive coup by bringing everyone and their mother back (hiiiii Mrs. Walsh!) – including Shannon Doherty. Of course, the late and wonderful Luke Perry is the exception, but had tragedy not struck, even he’d have guest starred. 

The concept is different – the main cast (and Emily Valentine) are playing heightened versions of themselves, almost caricatures, as they try to get a fictionalized reboot off the ground. Not everyone is pleased with this concept, but I’m loving it. Its clear that the lines are blurred between the original characters and the actors who have played them. Whether the show continues with this concept or actually throws us back into the actual 90210 universe, I’m here for it. 

Please, TV Gods and all that is holy, let this series continue for many seasons to come.

 Speaking of fabulous music, I leave you with a playlist of some of my favorite songs for this summer. Fall, I am ready for you!

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