22 March 2012

black + bees + honey gold

Getting dressed for a new job can be SO confusing. On one hand, I have what I have and that is what I can wear because that's my style. On the other, there's this craving to conform so that all the new people surrounding you see that you want to be a part of their team and you want to be friendly and fit in with them.
Of course I don't want to change who I am, they did hire me for me. But its still hard the first couple of weeks when you can barely remember people's names and are stumbling home every night with a brain made of mush from all the information you've crammed in all day.
I also want to be taken seriously. I haven't really ever spoken about what I do on the blog before, but I guess it could be time. I work in media research which is basically the who, what, where, when, why and how of media consumers. Ever hear people toss around phrases about a shows "ratings"? That's a really basic example of what I analyze. This helps the network understand what they are doing right, what they are doing wrong, and how they can sell ads.
I was formerly doing this for a media agency and now for CNN. Working for CNN is a dream come true for a former journalism student/huge-nerd. In high school we were asked to write our own obituaries and mine talked about how I worked at CNN. So even though I'm not on the content side of things...its a big-fucking-deal for me.
I want this to great. To make friends or at the very least be on friendly terms with everyone, to be taken seriously and to exceed expectations in my work.
While I'm in the office learning everything I can to make me good at this job, I don't want to be thinking about my clothes. Of course I will be a little because I love fashion, but I don't want it to interfere with anything I do here.
Here is something really simple I put together on Monday for work. Just because I'm feeling honest-- I changed into flats for most of the day. Nobody wants to be the girl who can't keep up her second week of work because of her ridiculously high heels.
Cooperative sweater, AA skirt, Jeffrey Campbell oxfords, Antoine et Lili purse, vintage watch and bumblebee brooch

21 March 2012

Sunshine daisies, butter mellow, turn this stupid fat rat yellow!

While I was in Paris I kept my spending to a minimum. Until I lost my mind in Antoine et Lili. My purse gripes are many and often, I almost always end up back at my grey Halogen satchel which is practically falling apart. While browsing the super-color-saturated store in Paris I came across this purse in a variety of colors. Of course buying a purse creates all kinds of agony for me: can I use it for work, will it get dirty, can I get my Metrocard out faster than the person behind me? Then of course I tried to be sensible and buy black.
Sam immediately talked me out of that decision. I settled on this golden yellow, my favorite color in the world and I don't care if it never matches my outfit. It even clashes perfectly with my wallet.
Here's what I usually lug around with me. Not pictured is my DSLR which actually fits perfectly inside alongside all of these things.
Antoine et Lili purse, Kate Spade wallet, Voodoo doll keyring was a gift from LK, Moleskein planner, various cards and things I need to get around, pens, Nivea and Burts Bees chapsticks, iPod, Kate Spade sunglasses

19 March 2012

Birthday dress

My birthday dress* has kind of an interesting story, I didn't really like it because maxi dresses aren't my thing. That is, until my mom and three other people in the Century 21 dressing room told me I looked tall. Me. Tall. What? Ok, so I've never been told that before, only the zipper was broken and I didn't want to spend $60 on a partially ruined dress.
But they said it made me look tall.
Scoured Amazon. SCORED! Got it brand new for $13 dollars.
As soon as I booked my plane tickets I knew it was meant to be my birthday dress. 25 is the year I stand tall.
*Its always been a tradition that I get a new dress to wear on my birthday (and obviously afterwards) every year.
For daytime I layered it with warm clothes for traipsing all over Paris, pairing it with Converse and my un-pictured Fjallraven backpack filled with a picnic lunch. For nighttime which I'll have to snap some pictures of soon I lost the layers and put on some heels for a night spent celebrating.
Romeo & Juliet dress, Uniqlo button down, H&M sweater, Thai silk scarf, Converse sneakers

Two days and two nights (turning 25)

The 7th and the 8th of March were all kind of jumbled into one, so I will put it all together here.
On the 7th Sam and I made a point of heading to the Musée d'Orsay before the crowds and lines converged on the converted train station. We wandered past the photograph-like paintings of Rosa Bonheur, the huge paintings by Gustave Courbet and then up and up to the top of the museum.
At the top past the giant clock-window, we wandered through the impressionists. Disliking Renoir, lingering at the works by Manet, until finally overwhelmed we decided to leave the museum in search of lunch.
At this point I put my camera away because it started to rain. We went to Marais and had falafel and french fries and spent the afternoon walking from shop to shop in the area. Punk rock vintage stores, Isabel Marant and various other lovely places that I would love to visit again. Late in the afternoon Sam headed to work and I headed back to her apartment to hang out and sleep a little.
Later, Remi called and I met him near the bar Sam works in so we could hang out with her while she worked.
Candelaria is a speakeasy bar that you get to through a small, unassuming taqueria that opens into a dark, cavern like room filled with mingling people and a long bar that serves the most delicious drinks. I recommend the Ruby Tuesday.
After this the night picked up. We made friends, stepped out for some air, made more friends. We chatted with Sam when she came out from behind the bar to check on the tables, shared a huge bowl of punch with a group that needed help finishing it. The only buzzkill during the night was when this awful guy wouldn't leave me alone, but insisted on insulting me at every turn. When the bar closed our new friends Clemence and Josephine invited Remi and I to join their group and go find a party somewhere. Sam said she would meet up with us and we headed out into the night.
At another late-night bar with crowded stairs and cat hanging out in a corner we made even more friends and drank beers. The insulting guy was there too, plus half the crowd from Candelaria. When Sam arrived it was 4 in the morning and we were still having beers for awhile longer. There was a toast to my birthday that came and went at midnight and then we went home.
Late in the morning we woke up and I was greeted with fresh croissants and my birthday present from Rich that came with me in my suitcase and wasn't to be opened until March 8th.
After opening my present and getting filled up with eggs and croissants Sam and I planned to go to Versailles. Once we got to the store to pick up food for a picnic we realized that it would be too late by the time we got the train out there. We changed plans and walked around a bit.
After deciding on a place for our picnic we took the Metro to the last stop and got off near the park in St. Cloud. We climbed the super steep hills and when we arrived at the top of the park the view was well worth it.
There was a picnic while the sun was shining with cheeses, breads, oranges, olives and wine.
The chocolate lady bugs came to the picnic for dessert.
Sam looking gorgeous, even after our unexpected uphill hike.
Am I pensive? Probably thinking about eating more cheese.
When it started to feel like winter again we packed up and made our way downhill to the train. We both fell asleep intermittently until we arrived home and slept a little more.
Sam even baked me cupcakes!
While everyone got ready to go out Champagne was passed around.
Sam and Remi, cheers!
The best picture I could get of my friends waiting to get into the Rosa Bonheur bar in Buttes Charmont. There was a wait because it wasn't only my birthday but also International Women's Day. Finally after a long time waiting there was a change in plan and we ended up at a club and Sam's friend Jessa came.
The DJ who was from New York City took my picture and then my camera had to be put away.
Back at Sam's everyone was talking and drinking whiskey when I fell asleep. Typical, but a perfect end to a great birthday.

15 March 2012

Golden spring

Leaving for Europe I fully intended to return to the weather I left, chilly early spring. Instead I was greeted with sun and unseasonal warmth. Luckily I was thinking ahead when I bought this skirt as a birthday gift to myself. Envisioning spring picnics and hot summer days when I bought it, it was relegated to the back of the closet, with a sigh, in February. On Tuesday instead of dressing in smart, typical, "first week at a new job clothes," I said screw it and embraced springtime with open arms. My only regret is the tights. I love the idea of lace tights but as soon as I put them on all I see is my legs looking like they have a skin condition.
Warehouse skirt, H&M tee, Thai scarf, Calvin Klein lace tights, Modcloth booties, Marc Jacobs bag, Garnett Jewelry necklace, sophiedear tote bag via etsy

14 March 2012

Scenes from Paris; March 6th

On a perfectly drizzly Paris day Sam and I ventured in to the center of the city by Metro to see the sights. Here are some snippets of what we saw.
La Carousel Belle Epoque was a bright spot in the foggy gloom.
Beasties and saints at Notre Dame.
Bunny-bopper in the shade of the gothic cathedral.
My beautiful friend Sam by the Siene.
Duck bath.
Notes from visitors inside Shakespeare and Company in the cozy upper rooms.
A message from Shakespeare and Company.
Symbols of love on the Pont des Arts. Perhaps someday I'll put a bike lock here with Rich.
Look at the sky.
Grafitti Godmother
At the end of a street, catching a glimpse of the Eiffel Tower.
At the Rodin museum, which was mostly closed.
The market street where we bought miel de thym (thyme honey).
Watching some dogs play at the Eiffel Tower.
Cherry blossoms to brighten the day.
Walking to the Arch de Triomphe onto the Champs Elysee.
Chanel at night.
At this point we had walked clear across Paris, covering miles and landmarks. We took our tired feet to the Metro and headed home. We watched a few episodes of Community and relaxed before going to dinner at a Brasserie near Sam's apartment. We ate goat cheese and drank wine. Finally before we leaving, dessert was served and my raspberry chocolate cake had a candle, the lights went down and my cake floated to me in the dark while everyone inside sang me Happy Birthday in French. At first I was shy about it (my birthday wasn't until the 8th), but then I was glowing happiness.
After dinner Sam explained the difference between Mezcal and Tequila to me and we sipped a bit while watching tv and relaxing before falling asleep.
Another wonderful day in Paris.
happy, honey & lark. All rights reserved. © Maira Gall.