Seven Summer Road Trip Essentials

Make sure to pack these seven things for your next trip!

Something about the long days and warm nights of summer excites the adventurous senses. And nothing quenches that thirst quite like gassing up your car for a road trip.

Hit a local beach with the kids before school starts or grab the boyfriend for a romantic weekend stay in a town far away from anyone you know. Explore a new city with your best friends or take a relaxing solo trip. The choice is yours!

And if you keep a to-go bag handy, with all your needed road trip essentials, you can squeeze in a few more summer road trips before the cool fall air blows in.

Whether you are hitting your favorite bed and breakfast a few towns away or you are seeking to create new memories, every summer deserves an exciting excursion. So grab your overnight bag and your besties and hit the open road with these seven road trip essentials.

1) Weekender Bag

Weekender Bag

The first thing you need is a sturdy weekender bag like this roomy one from Sole Society. If you want the bag to double as a purse, keep the color neutral.

2) Sunglasses

Sunglasses

Floppy Hat

Floppy hats are ideal for blocking the heat and humidity associated with the late summer season. This straw one from Asos is oversized for even more coverage.

4) Maxi Dress

Maxi Dress

For any road trip, a jersey maxi dress is a super easy and versatile piece. For cooler climates, let the maxi dress fall to its full length. For warmer temperatures, turn the dress into a midi length by knotting the bottom.

5) Jean Jacket

Jean Jacket

For chilly nights or early mornings, a staple jean jacket is a fashionable must for every gal. This denim jacket by Fire is an easy option for a road trip.

6) Scarf

Scarf

This lightweight Badgley Mischka scarf can serve three great purposes in your wardrobe during your road trip. You can use it to keep your neck warm, and a belt to cinch your waist or as a head wrap for a bad hair day.

7) Espadrille Flats

Espadrille Flats

Espadrilles are the perfect mix of the sturdiness of sneakers and the airiness of sandals. Whether you are hitting the beach or hitting the hiking trail, these Steve Madden espadrilles are going to fit right in!

This article was originally published (by me) on Examiner.com

How To Style The New Chuck Taylor II

3 Ways to StyleYour Chuck IIs

After literally 98 years, Converse is redesigning their iconic and beloved Chuck sneaker design. And after much fanfare, they are dropping today. The new design is very looking, stilling being made of canvas and sporting the All Star stamp, but the inside features are what is giving the new release so much hype. MSNBC describes the actually quite luxurious upgrades as including a “Lunarlon sockliner, a lightweight bouncy arch cushioning that can be found in models by Nike, […] micro-suede perforated lining, a foam padded collar, and a non-slip tongue.” The Chuck IIs are available in white, black, red and blue for starting at $70.

With the extreme PR push behind this redesigned product (I mean Nike is the branding king right?), you’ll be seeing a lot of new Chucks flooding your timelines and the streets of your city. And I suggest getting in on the all the fun!

Here are three fun ways to style your new Chucks!

Outfit #1: Feminine Fun

How To Style The New Chuck Taylor II

As a die hard girly-girl, I was NOT a fan of sneakers and dresses. But, of course, with the proper styling I eased my way into the trend. But a pair of pink Chuck IIs would be nice Converse!

Anyway, for this outfit start with a striped pencil skirt from Uniqlo and a coordinating striped crop top from Topshop (say that three times fast!). Accessorize with feminine touches such as pink Vera Bradley earrings and a pink Target minibag. Finish up with the black Chuck Taylor IIs.

Outfit #2: Casuals Weekender

Chucks are the ultimate in casual American dressing, so it lead itself well to the revived sundress and sneakers trend. Start off with this plus sized striped dress from Maurice’s and add in a denim jacket for added Americana flare. Accessorize with a simple pair of Michael Kors hoops and a fun pineapple print canvas bag. Finish this look up with the white Chuck IIs.

Outfit #3: Sexy Chic

While yes Chucks are thought of as casual shoes, with the right styling you can amp up the sexy appeal. Start off with low hanging, ripped boyfriend jeans from Topshop and a white crochet crop top from River Island. Accessorize with a bright red Ivanka Trump bucket bag and a gold BCBGMAXAZRIA cuff. And, of course, finish up with the red Chuck Taylor IIs.

Are you feeling the Chuck IIs redesign? How are you going to rock the new converses?

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Listen Up: My 9 Favorite Podcasts

fav pods

I originally started listening to podcasts my senior year in college. During some particularly stressful days my last semester, my friend put me on to The Read which provided me with some much need laughs. Then a few months later, she put me on to Desus vs. Mero. I was excited to know that on Tuesday’s and Friday’s I had something new and interesting to listen to while stuck in traffic. Then Kid Fury and Crissle of The Read shouted out 2 Guys and A Girl and then 2 Guys and a Girl shouted out NWAP. Then I was up to four podcasts a week, to fill up my free time during my commute or in the shower or while attempting to cook dinner.

Since then I’ve racked up a few more podcasts that I listen to at least once a day.

1) The Read

My original first podcast love. I binge listened to a year of this show probably in about ten days. I knew Kid Fury from his youtube videos and I was excited to hear how he interacted with Crissle. They talk about pop culture, entertainment, music and take listener questions which range from the benign to the wildly outrageous. But the whole point of the show is the “read”, where they give their strong options about a subject, generally letting them know how and why to get their ish together!

2) 2 Guys and A Girl

In the same vein of The Read, 2 Guys and a Girls is a pop culture podcast featuring XD, Jay Williams, and Jade. They also discuss current events and  entertainment but add in segments like the “messed” up song of the week, where they break down the lyrics of a popular but messed up songs, the five petty pillars of…, where they discuss proper decorum in situations like subway riding and dealing with coworkers and Jade’s custom cocktails, where Jade – well – gives out a custom cocktail recipe.

3) Negroes With A Podcast

Ok. I originally banged with this podcast because of the name and logo, but the content got me hooked. It’s basically four black men (again with strong opinions) discussing and debating current topics ranging from the Black Lives Matter movement to the NBA playoffs to a fried chicken draft. Yes, a fried chicken draft! It comes out weekly-ish and not always on the same day of the week like the other podcasts, but to tide you over, it’s totally worth giving these four brothers (Real Goes Right, Five Fifths, Ole Nerdy Bastard & Tunde) a follow on twitter.

4) Myleik’s Podcast

I don’t know if this has an official name, so I’m just going to call it Myleik’s podcast. Myleik Teele is the founder of the natural hair care subscription box CurlBox. She’s a savvy CEO who gives straight-forward advice on topics such as entrepreneurship, personal / digital branding and most recently dating. I appreciate that she’s shares her past failures and low points but is still focused on achieving and promoting excellence.

5) Another Round

This is a BuzzFeed podcast with two of it’s authors, Heben and Tracy, who are my two new friends in my head. I was already following these talented women on twitter and was stoked to hear their opinions on a podcast. This show features Tracy’s corny jokes, drunken debates and interviews with a diverse group of people ranging from writer Roxane Gay to fellow podcaster Crissle from The Read.

6) You Universe

I found this podcast my chance. I was writing late one night and needed some background noise other than Nicki Minaj. I went searching for business advice podcasts, as I am currently attempting to formulate my digital brand, and YouUniversity popped up. It’s a personal branding podcast where host Michael Peggs, former wall street banker turned Googler, who quit that job to work for himself as a Personal Branding Officer, interviews other creative entrepreneurs ranging from photographers, travel bloggers, and SEO specialists.

7) We Are The Link Up

I just found this podcast recently, and it actually inspired me to write this post. I followed one of the hosts, Ka’Lyn, on twitter (then followed the other two hosts, Amber and Jasmine and one of the fine male guests). This podcast is pretty much how all of the conversations go with my friends and its such a ratchet good time. As a former resident of the DMV and a “recent” college graduate, I relate to this podcast most of all.

8) #AskMattie

I’ve been following Mattie for a while now, and I love the new content she’s been putting out since she’s become a full-time blogger. But my favorite is the podcast. Short, actionable advice with a personality that has helped me with my blog and related content.

9) Two Guys One Show

I connected with Rich during a twitter chat a few weeks ago and started listening to this podcast in the last week. (And I am currently listening to the “$200 Date” episode.) I like hearing (non-ashy) male opinions on certain subjects and the long format is ideal for knocking a post out. And I’m also here for the financial advice if I ever get any money.

What are your favorite podcasts? I’m always on the hunt for new and exciting podcasts to listen to.


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Check out my coverage of the fall 2015 couture shows!

Photo by Francois Durand/Getty Images
Photo by Francois Durand/Getty Images

While the couture shows are limited to just a few collections presenting twice a year, it still represents the highest form of creativity and attention to detail that is left in the increasingly fast fashioned world. Yes, yes I know. Haute couture isn’t exactly the biggest driver of sales in the luxury sector. Matter of fact, only 2,000 people worldwide regularly purchase haute couture pieces. And with the price of a single pair of pants ranging well into 10’s of thousands of dollar, it’s understandable. But I’m not here to talk about the sustainability of haute couture in a fast fashioned world. I’m here to talk about how unabashedly beautiful and decadently decorated and sumptuously luxurious the exclusive world of haute couture is.

I have a few show reviews up and will update the post when I have more. Just click on the picture or the link below to read that shows review.

Atelier Versace

atelier versace fall 2015 couture

Giambattista Valli

Giambattista Valli fall 2015 couture

Schiaparelli

Schiaparelli fall 2015 couture

Armani Prive

Armani Prive fall 2015 couture

Elie Saab

IMG_4399


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12 Reasons To Travel To Bermuda

I might be a bit biased here because I’m half-Bermudian, but I do believe that Bermuda is one of the most beautiful places on Earth. And if you don’t agree with me, you’ve clearly never been. And if you never been, it’s time to go. Then you can agree with me. ^_^ Grab your passport and sunblock and get ready for amazing hospitality and beautiful sites!

Here are 12 reasons to travel to Bermuda.

1) Pink Sand Beaches

Source: http://tropixtraveler.com/

You’ve seen white sand, dirty sand, sand sand. But now, it’s time to grow up and see real sand; pink sand! Yes, the pink pieces are the crushed up remains dead sea animals and the nearby coral reefs, but whatever its pretty!

2) Location, location, location

Bermuda.com

For my American travelers, especially on the East Coast, Bermuda is located only about 600 miles off the coast of the Carolinas. And it only takes about two hours to travel from DC to the island’s only airport.

3) Money, Money, Money

Source: Will’s Online World Paper Money Gallery

Also for my American travelers, the American dollar is accepted and worth the same as a Bermudian dollar so there is no neeed to change money. However, Bermudian money is waaaaay prettier than our boring dollar.

4) Low pollution

Source: BerNews.com

Because the residents actually drink the rainwater, the island works hard to remain as low pollution as possible. Resulting in crystal clear water you can actually swim and fish in.

5) Food…

Source: TripAdvisor.com

Minus the one KFC in the capital, there are no fast food options on the island. So say bye bye to your flash fried pink paste burgers from McDonald and try an authentic Bermudian fish sandwich. If it’s not the best sandwich you’ve ever had, you obviously do not enjoy happiness. And because of the low pollution, you know the seafood is always at the peak of freshness.

6) …And Drink

Source: barexchange.com

If you are a rum drinker, make sure to have a spare liver ready for your return as the island is home to Gosling’s Rum, the main ingredient of the island’s signature drinks, Dark N’ Stormy and the Rum Sizzle.  If alcohol isn’t your speed, Gosling as makes a potent ginger beer that puts actual ginger roots to shame.

7) Weather

Source: europeanceo.com

As a subtropical island, the weather In Bermuda stays temperate year round. Highs in the dead of winter hover around in the upper 60’s and lows rarely even dipping into the 50’s. The summers can be warm and humid, but the highest ever recorded temperature is 93 degrees. Occasionally, a hurricane hits the island, but as resourceful people, Bermudians get back to normal life very quickly afterward.

8) Bermudian Hospitality

Mr. Happy Man from Matt Morris Films on Vimeo.

And speaking of people, Bermudians are some, if not the absolute nicest people to ever grace the earth ever. Its’s not uncommon for strangers to smile and strike up a long conversation and honking is friendly hello. If you don’t believe me, just watch the above video about Johnny Barnes aka Mr. Happy Man.

9) Colorful Buildings

Source: Instagram.com/Bermuda

You can feast your visual senses on the amazing and colorful architecture found throughout the island. Most buildings have sloped white roofs (that helps collect the rainwater and keep it clean) and have pastel and tropical colored exteriors. And with one of the globe’s highest church per capita rate you’ll see a lot of traditional gothic-style churches decked out in light blue or pink paint.

10) Adventure Sports

Of course, Bermuda has the best of water sports including scuba diving, snorkeling, swimming, yachting, fishing, and jet skiing. And if you like jumping off of cliffs into the ocean and still living, apparently (from the video above) Bermuda is a great place for yall to try that out. Just don’t invite me. If you want to relax by knocking some balls around, there’s nothing like 18 holes overlooking those pristine pink sand beaches. So it’s no wonder the PGA holds an Open here every year. Just make sure to wear your Bermuda shorts before hitting the green.

11) Culture

Source: Instagram.com/bermuda

Yes. Technically, Bermuda isn’t located in the physical Caribbean, but the culture is very in line with the rest of West Indian islands. But Bermuda does have several distinct cultural characteristics, such as the Gombey dancers featured above.

12) The Bermuda Triangle Isn’t A Thing

Source: ThinkingOfBermuda.com

Stop being silly. The Bermuda Triangle isn’t a thing. You’re not going to disappear into thin air Amelia Earhart. So says the 60,000 residents and nearly 500,000 visitors a year who are still alive.

Where are you dying to visit? Tweet me!

More Audrey than Marilyn. Unapologetically feminine. A High / Low Mix of Ladylike Style.

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