But First, Coffee…

Who goes to a cupcake shop for the coffee? This gal apparently. It’s hard not to be tempted by Velvet’s sweets in the window. I’m a sucker for their red velvet, banana chocolate, and pumpkin. However I did manage to resist and just prance in one day for a cup o’ joe. Also, excellent :) If you haven’t stopped by their Sherman Oaks location, do so when you’re in the area.

Nailed it. Turquoise ring by gypsy jeweler Vanessa Mooney.
Fat Cat. I love a good print. Sweater by MinkPink.
Fat Cat. I love a good print. Sweater by MinkPink.
My hat's off to ya. I wear this hat a lot, and for good reason. It's a great accessory from one of my go-to sites Shopbop.com
My hat’s off to ya. I wear this hat a lot, and for good reason. It’s a great accessory from one of my go-to sites Shopbop.com
I know, I wear a lot of black. It's kind of the quasi uniform, and it's easy. Jeans by J Brand. Boots by Dolce Vita.
I know, I wear a lot of black. It’s kind of the quasi uniform, and it’s easy. Jeans by J Brand. Boots by Dolce Vita.
I don't usually wear pink. But these cuppies wear it well :)
I don’t usually wear pink. But these cuppies wear it well :)

 

 Jewelry: Vanessa Mooney

Top: MinkPink

Jeans: Brand

Shoes: Dolce Vita

 

Wine Country

People are always shocked when I say that I’ve never really experienced Napa Valley, simply because as an adult I’ve been in Southern California the majority of the time. My parents go often, either for themselves or to entertain guests so I end up living and eating vicariously through them. Bouchon, The French Laundry, Ad Hoc…It seems like everyone and their cousins have been except for me. So to my surprise last Sunday after being bed ridden with what seemed like the plague, the beau decided to pack me in the car and drive on up to Napa for the day. Sweet, right?

IMG_6242

Trip highlights:

Perusing all the vendors at Oxbow Public Market. There’s just so much going on and so many wonderful smells of all kinds of cuisines permeating the place. It’s overwhelming, but in a tasty sensory overload kind of way.

Making a pit stop at Vallarta Market to try their famed burrito. Who goes to Calistoga for a burrito? We did…and it was divine….it’s hidden in this tiny little Mexican grocery store, luckily you can get directions to such establishment here: 1473 Lincoln Street, Calistoga, CA

Going to Bouchon Bakery to pick up gingerbread muffins for Mama and Papa. It’s a bustling little place that I call bread heaven: 6528 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599

Ending our trip with a surprise dinner reservation at Ad Hoc by Thomas Keller. Each night is a different prefix menu and I’m still full just thinking about our meal. In all honesty, the Cream of Mushroom Soup was my favorite, served with a gruyere cheese crostini. The main dish was Veal Scallopini served on whipped gold potatoes and broccolini romanesco. And finally for dessert, Vanilla Ice Cream Sundaes with butterscotch, pecans, and strawberry sauce. Needless to say, I am back at the gym and hot yoga to work all of this off!

Model Behavior at The Model Bakery in Napa. How cool is their planter box sign? Little succulents make up their signage. http://www.themodelbakery.com
Model Behavior at The Model Bakery in Napa. How cool is their planter box sign? Little succulents make up their signage. http://www.themodelbakery.com
Had to try Model Bakery's world famous English Muffins. You'll never settle for store bought packaged english muffins again.
Had to try Model Bakery’s world famous English Muffins. You’ll never settle for store bought packaged english muffins again.
The Oxbow Wine and Cheese Merchants are inside the public market in Napa. I'm a big cheese fan, so of course we had to try their charcuterie and delectable cheese spread. The ideal lunch, really.
The Oxbow Wine and Cheese Merchants are inside the public market in Napa. I’m a big cheese fan, so of course we had to try their charcuterie and delectable cheese spread. The ideal lunch, really.
Pit stop to take in the view at Robert Mondavi Winery. Beautiful estate, and by this time we got there as the sun was about to set.
Pit stop to take in the view at Robert Mondavi Winery. Beautiful estate, and by this time we got there as the sun was about to set.
I love this view. It was very cold, but luckily my Lovers + Friends Moto Jacket kept me warm. Check out those endless rows of grapevines!
I love this view. It was very cold, but luckily my Lovers + Friends Moto Jacket kept me warm. Check out those endless rows of grapevines!
I was surprised by a wonderful dinner reservation at Thomas Keller's famed Ad Hoc. Every night is a different prefix menu, I think I'm still full from it all. Just perfect.
I was surprised by a wonderful dinner reservation at Thomas Keller’s famed Ad Hoc. Every night is a different prefix menu, I think I’m still full from it all. Just perfect.

>>>The Model Bakery<<<

>>>Thomas Keller<<<

What I wore: Lovers + Friends Babe Moto Jacket

 

A New Year

Happy New Year everyone. It seems like yet again another year goes by faster than the last, which is great in some respects, but it’s also left me feeling a bit glum if you will. Maybe because 2014 was a whirlwind of changes where I had to adapt and make bigger decisions rather quickly. With LA’s movie industry going away to budget friendly states like Louisiana, work as a Costume Designer took a big dip. That trickled into the Styling world and I was choosing my jobs very carefully which is fantastic, but sporadic. With work being so dry, I decided to move into a new more affordable apartment in May with a room mate and a little dog named Mister Cosmo. We get along splendidly.

And though 2014 was a year of change, I do think it was one of my favorite years to date. These changes made me incredibly selective with work and career. Once again I have to leave those who do not serve me kindly and learn to let things go. Self awareness and happiness brought by morning yoga is probably my highlight each day. Work is not life, I can manage my time with family who still lives in The Bay, along with my wonderfully supportive boyfriend and his fluffy four legged counterpart Boo (Boo makes appearances on my Instagram from time to time.) And if LA is changing, then so do I. Which is why I started this blog in the first place. Feeling bold, I took a shot in the dark one morning and emailed Ryan Chua, renowned blogging photographer in SF and he graciously agreed to shoot this photo set which came out beautifully. Thank you Ryan, here’s to many more.

Cheers everyone. To a full and happy new year!

Lauren

Walk it out. This top is everything...sheer but just enough. Did I mention that these jeans are my go to basics as well? JBrand is my all time favorite when it comes to denim. Never fails.
Walk it out. This top is everything…sheer but just enough. Did I mention that these jeans are my go to basics as well? JBrand is my all time favorite when it comes to denim. Never fails.

 

All black errthang...this peplum top from For Love and Lemons is one of my favorites.
All black errthang…this peplum top from For Love and Lemons is one of my favorites.
I'm a Bay girl tried and true. Stylist by trade. A little nostalgic maybe, but the iconic Ferry Plaza is somewhere I have been going to since I was little. Shot by Ryan Chua.
I’m a Bay girl tried and true. Stylist by trade. A little nostalgic maybe, but the iconic Ferry Plaza is somewhere I have been going to since I was little. Shot by Ryan Chua.
The Bay Bridge...what can I say, it's home.
The Bay Bridge…what can I say, it’s home.

 

Jewelry from the gracious hands of designer and friend Marrin Costello. She's also a Bay girl! These are some of her new pieces from her Stoned Collection.
Jewelry from the gracious hands of designer and friend Marrin Costello. She’s also a Bay girl! These are some of her new pieces from her Stoned Collection.

Top: For Love and Lemons

Jeans: J Brand Jeans

Jewelry: Marrin Costello

Shoes: Chinese Laundry

Shot by: Ryan Chua