Sisterhood of the Traveling Selfies | March 26, 2015 | Comments (0)

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That thing where you pack really rad outfits for a work/pleasure trip and realize – derp! – no tripod, no proper FFAF photos for le blog. Whoops.

One can try to make do with a precariously balanced, very expensive camera upon a stack of books and magazines upon an ironing board or fence post (do you know how many fence posts aren’t anywhere near level?!), or rely upon the kindness – and trustworthiness – of strangers (it can work, as evidenced in a recent post, though it is not recommended), or one can sigh deeply and resign herself to selfies. LUCKY Y’ALL.

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But look at this excellent Reiss jumpsuit! I found it for a song while gala dress hunting. POWER BALLAD. ARIA. SONNET. MELODY. That kind of song, I’m talking upwards of 80% off the original price, brand new, and this puppy is 100% silk. I cannot lie to you, however, trips to the water closet in this puppy are a, well, you know. A puppy’s mother.

So many buttons, tiny ones, lots of little tiny buttons with the fussy concealed silk placket and a bloody zipper and that metal trouser hook and bar situation. My god! But I love it, it’s so polished and gorgeous, and was a great choice for running around the day of event, working.

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Once upon a time, I went to a magical land where spring was in bloom in late, late February. Was it all a dream? Staying at the lovely Beverly Hilton didn’t hurt one bit.

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How could my skin be so glowy and plump despite sleep deprivation and work stress and cross-country travel and lots of take-out or multiple Trader Vic’s meals? Like 7 hours of sleep over 48+ hours, guys. How?! Any Best Coast benefits quickly began to fade once I was back in Boston.

Magical land, I say. Magical sea, magical sky, magical vibes. 

Related: HURRY UP, SUMMER. 

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Crepe tulip skirt from Asos! Everlane tank! Vegan heels! Piles of jewelry from everywhere – Oakland, Bermuda, Boston, San Francisco. Warby Parker sunglasses, which sadly decided in the middle of a rather dramatic storm that New England life was not their jam, and so they remained in California.

A moment, please.

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Black velvet high-waisted ‘Julia’ trousers c/o Vaute Couture, paired with a wavy white crop top. Simple, but dressy enough for a delicious dinner at Crossroads with friends.

And there you have it, a mini-selfie femme circus of one. Hope you enjoyed it!

The temps are ever-so-slowly clawing their way up the thermometer, and we have tickets to the symphony this weekend. And projects. So many spring projects. I hope everyone is warmer than we are! It’s all still melting and melting – fingers crossed that it’s a distant memory come May!

XOXO,

FFAF




SBJ @ 11:35 PM

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Palihouse | March 22, 2015 | Comments (0)

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Palihouse lobby. The saturated, lush interior oozes texture, moodiness, and an ambience that’s equal parts sacrosanct, bustling, and the kind of nonchalant cool achievable only by living that Best Coast life.

Not everybody’s cup of tea, but the delightful staff and salty sea air really sealed the deal for me. I can’t wait to bring M back – my one regret was that she wasn’t there to be a troublemaker alongside me, and the epic lightning storm, late-night delivery of bubbles and sleepy mornings perched on the balcony weren’t as fun without her there. Another time!

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And that’s where the Linus bikes came from! I love that the space if perfectly curated, but wheeling sandy bikes in and out past the stacked dishes and perfectly lit art and fireplace and busts is just how it’s done. It doesn’t actually feel fussy.

I think one of the reasons I loved it here so much is because it reminds me of a family friend’s Healdsburg home, and one day that sweet, wine country nostalgia is going to be the reason I’m getting a kitchen with massive terra cotta tile flooring. It’s one of those completely irrational urges that feels the way things ought to be – lived in, imperfect, rich as in full. And we can roast our own coffee beans! Side note: The cafe, sadly not pictured, had delicious hot drinks and also loads of pretty and delicious complimentary homemade lemonade.

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I know there was Autostraddle news the last time I posted, but I’m so proud to be a writer on the Autostraddle roster right now. Last night they won the honor of Outstanding Blog at the 26th Annual Los Angeles GLAAD Media Awards. Incidentally the event was also held at The Beverly Hilton, and I think a lot of us cheering the team on from home enjoyed the bananas red carpet coverage and following our peers’ sundry social media accounts. You can watch Kerry Washington’s moving Vanguard Award acceptance speech here, and read or see more from the evening here.

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CONGRATS, AUTOSTRADDLE! TAKING OVER THE WORLD!

Amazing. Work hasn’t slowed down a bit since the last time I posted – our team hardly had time to catch our breath before we reconvened last week at an offsite retreat with our entire national staff, and this week we’ve moving offices so things have had a bit of a non-stop, hustle bustle, git ‘er done vibe. But soon I’ll be able to wave at M’s office from my own (albeit from 22 floors up, ha!) and our post-work dates and drinks will be that much easier. It’s the little things, y’all!

More soon,
FFAF




SBJ @ 10:00 PM

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Pacific Park | March 8, 2015 | Comments (0)

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I’m beginning to feel like the combination of work, trips, and weather have turned this into more of a sporadic, style-inspired travel blog than style blog with occasional travel! Incredibly harsh New England winters zap me (and just about everyone else) of the energy and desire necessary to keep inspired, to say nothing of the logistical challenges: little to no natural daylight, extreme discomfort posting outdoors, and how after an initial dusting, the snow is filthy and revolting and impassable – not a good look for any photo-based blog.

All that has the tendency to turn the things you love into chores, if and when there’s any time left for them, so lately it’s only felt fun again in the sunshine and far-flung locales – a very lucky “problem” to have, so I won’t dwell on it, but I do hope you’re enjoying it as readers either way!

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After wrapping up a major annual event in Beverly Hills for work last weekend, I booked myself into a gorgeous boutique hotel in Santa Monica for a few extra days for some much-needed R&R. The crazy, torrential downpours that happened over Sunday and Monday scrubbed the skies clean to deep, pristine blues, and it felt amazing to breathe in Pacific Ocean air for the first time in a while.

Since the hotel was only a few blocks from the beach, and rent pretty sweet Linus bikes for guests to use, I decided to go for a solo bike ride for a few hours on a sunny afternoon!

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Of course I made an obligatory stop at the Pacific Pier, and took a ride on the ferris wheel for the views. An employee had to ride with me “for my own safety” (yikes), but she turned out to be a huge fan of San Francisco and was more than willing to snap a pic or two, and ended up being lovely company.

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Speaking of views, I super geeked out when I saw this building. Everything about it is perfect. From the moment I saw the poppies at the edges of the runway at LAX, and all the green everywhere (despite the godawful statewide drought), and all the delicious exits dotting the massive highways, my little California girl heart just exploded with happiness.

It might be a lot further south than where I grew up and lived my whole life, but it’s still Home, Sweet Home and man, did it feel good to be there.

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I also feel like I ought to get some sort of fancy, grown ass Girl Scout badge for the following firsts:

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There’s a part two coming next because the Palihouse Santa Monica interior is to die for and completely worthy of its own post, even though you’re seeing some of the meticulously kept exterior and courtyards here.

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Styled Horses Dress – Modcloth | ‘Edell’ Faux Snakeskin Pumps – Bandolino | ‘Tate’ City Tote in Tan Leather – Lauren by Ralph Lauren | Cole Haan Sunglasses

Before you go, a little announcement: Autostraddle is celebrating its sixth birthday Monday! To celebrate, I’m doling out my best life path guidance in the Advice-A-Thon / Ask Us Anything Birthday Party online tomorrow evening from 5-8pm EST.

We’re also giving away SIX year-long Bronze A+ Memberships and SIX year-long Silver A+ Memberships on Monday morning, plus another year-long Bronze A+ Membership for every six new A+ sign-ups we get all Monday long! 

Come hang out and ask me stuff!

XOXO,
FFAF




SBJ @ 10:56 PM

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Bermuda Jungle | February 6, 2015 | Comments (0)

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What I wouldn’t give for sunshine and weather that warranted head-to-toe linen! These scalloped shorts from Asos and a drapey linen tank in a fun jungle print from Madewell are both perfect for casual island wear. The new year feels so far long ago, especially when everything outside is buried under 3′-5′ of snow and some forecasts project a whopping 85 consecutive hours of snowfall starting again this weekend.

All of New England is crying uncle, and I feel like half the people I know are enjoying Denver weather at Creating Change (which I think just proves I keep excellent company).

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The Fairmont Southampton’s perky pink palette against fresh blues and greens is a sight for sore eyes! Wore a pair of low-maintenance sunglasses in a classic wayfarer design and my beloved Plague of Pigeons anchor earrings from Pretty Penny back in Oakland for accessories…plus some wrist candy from Flock, one of my favorite South End boutiques here in Boston, as well as Alex & Ani.

I’m also really into this super sheer, YLBB lip balm/tint from Royal Apothic called Tinties Lip Butter. Mine’s in Coral and it’s that rare, holy grail shade for me!

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It’s been two weeks since my last post because I severely underestimated what post-op would look and feel like after having four wisdom teeth removed. Oh my god, it was awful. I’ve never been under general anesthesia before, and I started to panic a little when they went to put the IV in! “I’ve been through natural childbirth and delivered an eight-pound newborn,” I remember telling them in a shaky voice, “I don’t know why I’m being such a baby about this.”

Then suddenly I was waking up and my mouth was so dry from the drugs that I felt like I couldn’t breathe. I remembered exactly nothing they said about post-care instructions, so thank goodness M was there, and after she tucked me in at home and went to pick up the pain meds and antibiotics at the pharmacy, they gave her the runaround and she ended up having to elsewhere to fill my prescription. By the time she got home, the medication from the surgery had worn off and I was miserable, and stayed that way for about a week and a half. I only just this week started to resume eating normal foods and might even brave popcorn this weekend, which is really exciting, as silly as that sounds.

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Shoes so sexy you’d never know they were vegan! By Olsenhaus. Not a whole lot else is new…a coworker pal of mine and I had a double salon date at Trephin, which is right around the corner from our offices downtown. I lucked out and ended up with a Best of Boston: Best Hair Colorist Winner, Nina Ganci, and it was the perfect pick-me-up after being bedridden by recovery and housebound by snow for nearly two weeks. Head over to my Instagram for a preview!

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Everything else is work-work-work before a bunch of us head to LA for our annual Awards Dinner at the end of the month. We’re honoring an incredible crop of folks: Modern Family & Glee, Honeymaid, and Houston Mayor Annise Parker. Our Master of Ceremonies couldn’t be cooler, because she’s Sandra freaking Bernhard, and we have a killer lineup of special guests and performers. I’m looking forward not only to seeing all our efforts come to fruition for an amazing event in support of LGBTQ families, but also to palm trees and sunshine and sipping well-deserved tiki cocktails from a poolside cabana, and some quality time with my rad colleagues.

Whatever your weather, I hope you’re all cozy as kittens out there.

XOXO,
FFAF




SBJ @ 5:30 PM

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Union Park | January 22, 2015 | Comments (0)

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The other day we had brunch at one of our favorite South End spots, who cheerfully informed us that they were out of baby donuts but had opened a BRAND NEW DONUT SHOP mere blocks away. We carried on with our brunch (chicken and donut waffles took center stage), but oh man, as soon as I can chew real food again, we are picking some up. I know they sound super frou frou and at $3 a pop, pretty indulgent, but listen to these flavors: blackberry lavender, honey lemon pistachio, salted toffee, sesame Sriracha, chocolate cake, and vanilla glazed.

Plus baby cinnamon-sugar donuts in trios! Blackbird, we’re coming for you.

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It was coooooooooooooooooold this day, so I broke out my new Uniqlo Ultra Light Long Down Coat. I really didn’t want to break down and get one of these godawful things, but this winter has been brutal now that I’m commuting daily. I wanted something light enough to layer under my pretty long black coat, but substantial enough that I could just throw it on alone for errands (or brunch, apparently), or those notorious below-zero, IDGAF winter days.

Barring winning the lottery and filling up a closet with Belstaff, I did NOT want to spend Canada Goose dollars on something I want to hiss at whenever I look at it, which is basically anytime the feels-like is above 20°F. That I can handle without compromising style, thank you kindly.

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I wore an old silk minidress I’ve had for years under a faux shearling Jack by BB Dakota vest from Modcloth, with cashmere tights and ‘Colston’ leather riding boots from Enzo Angiolini in a really cool khaki green that M is fond of referring to as “zookeeper” green.

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For accessories, I wore this leafy leather necklace by Mariele Ivy, who does Young In The Mountains now. The winged skull is from London’s Galibardy. I’ve also got on some Alex & Ani charm bracelets and the Orb ring from J. Crew. I threw second-day hair into this messy, undone side braid that just sort of fell into loose waves. Different, but fun!

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That’s it for now! The next four days are going to be a druggy and hopefully not too pain-filled stupor of recovering from wisdom teeth surgery. I’m dutifully knocking back organic pineapple juice as instructed by a friend and hoping for the best!

XOXO,
FFAF




SBJ @ 9:30 AM

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Monday Mashup: Selma, MLK Jr., LGBTQ Updates, This Girl Can, and more… | January 19, 2015 | Comments (0)

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Fun fact: Today’s beautiful Google Doodle honoring Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is by one of Boston’s own Roxbury artists, Ekua Holmes. She’s done magnificent work!

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Yesterday we went to see Selma together as a family at a local indie theater. It was wonderfully well-paced and acted, powerful, and moving even when you go in with the expectation that you will be moved. Today you can dive even deeper into Selma with Rep. John Lewis, read MLK Jr.’s longest ever interview, which I highly recommend, or simply track #blacklivesmatter actions, essays and Twitter feeds (I see you, Oakland) to take a moment out of your day and reflect on how incredibly hard people have fought for equality, and how much work is left to do, and what your part may be in all of that.

No nation can suffer any greater tragedy than to cause millions of its citizens to feel that they have no stake in their own society. -Martin Luther King, Jr. 

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Congressman John Lewis, via Garden & Gun

On a very different note, the costumes from the film! In my dreams, it’s what the Bobby From Boston warehouse looks like (Note to self – Bucket List: 2015 Edition). The colors and textures and tones were wonderful; things felt so soft and muted, but vibrant. I can’t even deal with what a babe Tessa Thompson is:

Here’s a neat quote from director Ava DuVernay on Ruth Carter’s Costume Design:

Ruth did an amazing job with a small budget. We made the film for $20 million, and we had two days to shoot the bridge, in 100-plus degree weather, in the Deep South, on the actual bridge, with some survivors of the real march — it was a lot for Ruth and her team, who all did an outstanding job. It was important that the people of Selma be represented: who they were, what they look like.

Let’s go back to Tessa one more time:

SO CUTE.

I can tell you what isn’t cute I won’t be seeing: American Sniper. An old colleague of mine said it best on TwitterSniper, which encourages fear of brown “others,” made $30M on the Friday after the – more than Selma’s total take thus far.

Needless to say, if you haven’t gone and watched Selma yet, what are you waiting for? There was a huge upset last week when the Oscar noms were announced, leaving POCs and women (and POC women in particular) absent from many of the categories. No headline captured my thoughts and feelings as perfectly as this one from the good old Oakland Tribune:c78bspzl9dserwzubi1r
As did this post from Autostraddle. 

You can also watch this, because they really are just the cutest, most photogenic, loving family, who’ve been nothing but awesome in the face of hateful backlash when their Instagram feed went viral last year. It wasn’t all negative – Kordale, Kaleb and their gorgeous daughters have clearly won themselves a huge fan club the world over, because people aren’t as horrible as it might seem during weeks like the one we’ve just had.

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Don’t skip This Girl Can, a short video that’s a “celebration of active women up and down the country who are doing their thing no matter how well they do it, how they look or even how red their face gets,” from a national campaign in the UK. It’s so much more than that, watching it!

One thing that struck me was how much everyone in the video is totally, 100% feeling themselves.

I see that in the women I know whether they’re running marathons, competing in StrongWoman competitions, learning MMA, working with personal trainers, playing roller derby or cycling their faces off. I see it in myself, too, whether I’m on horseback or in a barre class (which I highly recommend for all riders – stay as supple as you want your horse to be).

Here’s what else was on my radar last week:

Here are the handmade feminist thought flags you never knew you needed. You’re welcome!

A-Camp Recaps arrived! Reading them feels like going back to Mt. Feelings, it really does, and I just want to reiterate that going to camp is one of the best gifts you can give yourself, and you’ll fall in love with everyone there.

Same-sex marriage is headed to the Supreme Court!

The map showing the rising percentage of poor students in our public schools is alarming, and a reminder that this country needs to get its damn priorities in order. This fictional rant just gets more and more on point with time, sadly.

Finally, the secret to smarter working teams is revealed.

Have you been to many World Heritage Sites? We just crossed another off our list in Bermuda.

I’ll also finally be getting my wisdom teeth out this week, and I’m dreading it! It’s silly, but I DON’T WANNA!

Feel free to share encouraging words, survival tips, or just commiserate in the comments. And thanks for reading this far – I just felt like doing something a bit different today.

XOXO,
FFAF




SBJ @ 12:09 PM

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Old St. George’s | January 17, 2015 | Comments (0)

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Ducks in a row! So cute!

Welcome to St. George’s, which used to be called New London, and why the English bothered to go any further than this is beyond me. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site, home to a spattering of buildings and structures from the early 1600s, lots of wee little islands home to old forts and batteries, and the most striking harbor waters I’ve ever seen in my life. Lucky ducks, indeed!

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It was New Year’s Eve day and we all decided to spend the afternoon there after I returned from a morning horseback ride. You can’t tell, but I have a swollen lip from where a branch smacked me in the face while cantering up a narrow but lush, tropical trail!

The 1.5 hr. ride went at least an hour over (I wasn’t complaining, believe me – the views and galloping through the waves breaking at my toes were spectacular) and my best friend, M and the petite had all been waiting for me. I tried texting from atop my horse, Lucky, to no avail. M was so worried she’d been calling every stable on the island! I was sweaty and sore and smelled like a barncat, but peeled off my jeans and tank and threw this dress on, mussed some dry shampoo into my hair and twisted it up into this haphazard twist, and off we went to St. George’s.

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Which is gorgeous, as you can see. Old and marvelous! I’m a sucker for glossy black doors, may our next home be blessed with one. (We can’t mess with the Victorian palette on ours.) Can you see the little crosses in the wood panels above the green shutters in St. Peter’s Church? After it blew down 84,000 times, they wizened up and made a framework from precious Bermuda cedar, with limestone walls and a slate roof just like every other standing house there.

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This fantastic old penny farthing was one in a pair permanently parked outside the delightful Bermuda Hat Lady Millinery Shop, which was sadly closed for the holiday. The windows were decked out with Christmas decorations and returning to have a look around inside would justify another trip back on its own! So darling, and the millinery looked divine.

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The famous golden onion for the NYE drop in St. George’s Town Hall!

All over the island you could see some still-battered areas from Hurricanes Gonzalo and Fay, which gave the island a one-two whack within days of each other last fall. Sailboats washed ashore or flipped upside down in a bay, swaths of upturned or lashed trees in great big fields, a few rooftops crumbling under blue tarps whipping around in the wind, and a few of the shops closest to the water in St. George’s were just reopening after fixing damage and flooding.

Shop owners met customers with genuine warmth and gratitude – there’s a still a long winter before throngs of tourists return with an influx of cash, and living on the island is expensive. Outside of an obligatory stop at Marks & Spencer, we made an effort to spend at shop local and handmade as much as possible!

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I’ll take a break from Bermuda to post some wintry looks next time, but I hope you’re enjoying a look around this gem of an island through my lens. Keep warm, the feels-like this sunny Saturday morning is -10°F!

Fete of Florists’ Dress – Modcloth | Nude Patent Wedges – BCBG Generation (similar here and here) | Grey Chain Belt – Zara (excellent alternative here) | Crackled Leather Hardware Clutch – She & Lo | Cole Haan Sunglasses

XOXO,
FFAF




SBJ @ 9:58 AM

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