I welcomed 2011 as a year of surprise and mystery, both of which were fulfilled beyond my expectations. I agonized over the college decision process, I graduated high school, I spent a summer loving life before I flew across the pond to spend my first semester of university in London. Last year, I would have found this very idea to be entirely absurd, but even in my 2010 review post I accepted that things often work out in the craziest ways possible. At this point, I'm quite glad some things didn't happen. I had my heart set on attending RISD in autumn of 2011, but I ended up thousands of miles away from home instead. I wouldn't change that for anything. 2011 has been a year of decisions and transitions, all of which I suppose are quite natural for someone my age.
January: I just can't quit now, you really got a hold on me.
I dyed my hair red and enjoyed wearing my Docs with floral prints.
February: Zigzag and plaid
After a few weeks of staying home sick with glandular fever, I returned to school and mixed prints. While wearing Doc Martens.
March: All the styrofoam began to melt away.
I enjoyed the stoned-librarian turn my style began to take, and I ended up as Teen Vogue's pick of the day.
April: Philly Frolicking
Weeks after a rejection from a certain school whose colors are brown and red, I took a trip into Philly and explored NoLibs.
May: Last Day
I enjoyed my last day of high school...
June: Graduation Day
...and a month later, I graduated.
July: Back to school vibes
I pondered life in a park, and it started to sink in that I would be quite far away come autumn.
August: Going away party
My friend threw a going away party in my honor, and a few days later I packed by bags and left the country.
September: Sun is in the sky, oh why, oh why would I want to be anywhere else?
I took a cue from a famous British songstress and enjoyed a few sunny days in London town.
October: Return from the countryside
After a weekend retreat to the Malvern Hills, I returned to London with a sense of rejuvenation.
November: Hilsener fra København
I went to Copenhagen, Denmark! I've long been enthralled with Scandinavia, so this was quite a treat (although very cold).
December: Home is wherever I'm with you
Three and a half months, four countries later, I returned to a wintery Philadelphia. Home.
Here's to a 2012 full of surprises!
Friday, December 30, 2011
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
Coat - Modcloth, cardigan - H&M, dress - Volcom, belt - thrifted, leggings - Forever 21, shoes - Topshop
I wore this to grab lunch with a family friend (whom I hadn't seen in months!) and my siblings. It was quite nice - we went to Panera, where I always order the Mediterranean Veggie sandwich. I also had some earl grey tea, undoubtedly influenced by the prominence of tea in England. It's so much better than coffee. Ever hear of "coffee time"? Exactly.
A few weeks back, someone asked me on Tumblr about school, specifically if it was giving me a hard time because my outfits seemed less inspired. I replied that was indeed true, based on a variety of factors, naturally. I'm reunited with my over-stocked closet, I have no qualms about wearing heels because I walk much less, afternoon naps aren't nighttime naps (it is dark in England by 4pm), I haven't really had the time to delve into posts on my Google reader feed, etc. Though I can't help but feel (paradoxically) less pressure to dress a certain way. London is a very, very stylish city - my excursions nowadays involve wondering where all the brogues went and where all these sweatpants came from - but it's a little overwhelming to me in that sense.
I have an idea of how I want to present myself, both in real life and on my blog, but I felt I couldn't quite live up to my own expectations. I hate to admit it, but I felt a bit (perhaps an understatement) inferior to native Londoners in regards to aesthetics. It's so funny because London has a reputation that "anything goes" - it's evident that street style is a friendly competition to see who can dress quirkier. And that's just the thing; though I may feel out of place in my small hometown, I felt invisible in London. And that feeling didn't exactly motivate me to put on a pair of five inch heels.
I hope to further reflect upon my time abroad before the New Year, but that's it for now. Might go see the Girl With the Dragon Tattoo at the cinema if it isn't sold out! Enjoy your evening!
Monday, December 26, 2011
Coat - Forever 21, sweater - gift, necklace - antique, skirt - Lulu's via Beso.com, tights - Hue, boots - Rachel Comey, satchel - market in London
Just a quick Happy Christmas post! Today was one of those days I thoroughly enjoyed my outfit but cut myself short with time to take photos... thus most were unusable due to my not-so-attractive facial expressions.
This Christmas, I've realized - and adored - what home is. I think that's the best gift of all.
PS Miss the suburban landscape?!
Wednesday, December 21, 2011
Coat - ModCloth, cardigan - sister's, dress - Asos, necklace - Etsy, tights - Target, boots - Doc Martens
I would have liked to have posted these photos while still in London, but I was busy exploring one last time... and packing. I went to the National Portrait Gallery, V&A Museum (my favorite!), Liberty, and Selfridge's one last time. My departure itself was chaotic and a tad bitter; I realized I forgot a handful of belongings in my room, I was running on literally no sleep, I couldn't sleep on the plane despite that fact. I cried upon seeing my friend Tracey, who accompanied my mom to the airport. I cried hysterically once we drove down my street and even more when I stepped inside my house and saw my cat. Tears of joy, obviously. There's no place like home!
I've been relaxing as much as physically possible, with my cat by my side, of course. I haven't felt like leaving my bed too much, but I did to bake Christmas cookies, see some friends, go to Target (yay!) to get wrapping paper, and whatever else. Unfortunately, I think I'm coming down with something. Perhaps it's from last week's lack of sleep.
In case you were wondering, my tea habit has only increased since touching down in the US of A... I seem to have forgotten I used to be addicted to coffee!
I'm so excited for Christmas. Normally I'm such a scrooge, but I am just so excited to give everyone their gifts! I think I did quite well this year with my selections, but perhaps I'm just being hopeful since nothing is returnable, unless the recipient cares to travel to London... There's just no place like home for the holidays.
Monday, December 5, 2011
Coat - Modcloth, jumper - Zara, necklace - thrifted, skirt - H&M, leggings - Forever 21, shoes - Topshop
Dressing for Monday mornings = wearing tried and true favorites. Can't say I really anticipated the bone-chilling weather, though. Probably the coldest day in London I've experienced! It is December, after all. My hands were numb during this (very brief) shoot.
The days here are dwindling, with the countdown bearing just eleven days at this point. It's all final exams (and essays) and Christmas shopping now - maybe a few drinks at nearby pubs and perhaps the last trips to my favorite museums here. (Note: I visited the Victoria Albert Museum for the third time yesterday, and I have still not seen half of the collection on display.)
On an incredibly positive note, I couldn't be more excited to see my animals.
On an unrelated note, I've been updating my Tumblr to the point of obsession. Must have something to do with finals quickly approaching...