The Chic and Affordable Decor Line You Were Waiting For

April 17, 2018  |  Decor 5 comments

Target has really been stepping up its style with multiple amazing fashion lines. And now it’s got an extensive inventory of chic and affordable decor items. I’m gushing over the new Target for Opalhouse debut line featuring bold colors, eclectic details, and travel inspired designs. If you’re looking for statement pieces, you’ll find many items for under $30. And if you’re like me, you’ll want to fill your cart up.

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The line includes three collections: Indochina, Canyon Sunrise, and Mallorca. Feel free to mix and match the pieces or shop your favorite style exclusively. One of my favorite product lines (aside from the fabulous furniture options) is the peel and stick wallpaper, which comes in a myriad of fun and colorful designs — perfect for an accent wall, alcove, or bookshelf.Opalhouse for Target Favorites

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There are 1,300 items in the collection, but some of the most popular ones are already out of stock. So hurry!

What’s your favorite piece from the new Opalhouse for Target line?

The Suburbs Just Got More Exciting with Katie’s Pizza & Pasta

April 9, 2018  |  Food 6 comments

Katie’s Pizza & Pasta Town and Country has quickly become a local favorite, packing in the crowds like its Rock Hill counterpart.

The beautiful space elicits an authentic Italian osteria with its open floor plan and sundrenched rooms. Once you’ve been seated, the moderately priced menu is bound to make you drool in anticipation. Recently, I enjoyed the hearty lunch special. Come spend the afternoon with me!

Outside Katie's Pizza & Pasta Town and Country

The Suburbs Need More Restaurants Like Katie’s Pizza & Pasta

Finally, a hip new restaurant in Town & Country has arrived. This suburb is known for quiet streets, strip malls, and chain restaurants. However, its residents often crave more authentic fare, locally sourced ingredients, and exciting ambience without having to leave the bubble. Since Town & Country is a suburb, locals dine out mostly on the weekends (aside from fast food). Without enough foot traffic, this makes it difficult for new restaurants to succeed.

Katie’s Pizza & Pasta Osteria is one of the few non-chain restaurants to make it big in the area. What it gets right: a modern setting that’s still family-oriented, high quality food, and affordability. Hopefully, Katie’s will lead the way to other success stories that will help our neighborhood thrive. (And selfishly…create more exciting options for my social life.)

Ambience at Katie's Pizza & Pasta Town and Country

Boden Scattered Lemons Breton and Kiera Skirt

Top: c/o Boden / Skirt: c/o Boden / Purse: c/o Boden / Sandals: c/o Boden / Earrings: Jenny Bird (similar) 

The Dining Room at Katie's Pizza & Pasta Town and Country

Katie’s Pizza and Pasta Menu

The Katie’s Pizza and Pasta menu is extensive. It’s better to go with a group so you can try as much as you like. But for lunch they give you two options for under $15: a half salad and an entrée. Since they’re encouraging me to eat healthy with a salad, I’m only too happy to indulge in my second course.

The hand crafted pizzas have inventive toppings like brussels sprouts, pears, figs, and caramelized leeks smothered with fresh cheeses like mozzarella, parmigiano, fontina, and goat cheese. The pastas and sandwiches are equally as enticing with options such as lemon strozzapreti and a crispy smoked salmon panino.

Katie's Pizza & Pasta Menu

Pasta at Katie's Town and Country

The bar at Katie's Pizza & Pasta Town and Country

Although a tough decision, I opted for the fried artichoke salad, which Katie’s is famous for, and the Fiori Arrabiatta pasta made with a spicy sauce. I couldn’t pass up the chance to try a Joia all natural soda so I sprang for Pomegranate and Ginger. It was the perfect refresher to complement my food.

Katie's Pizza & Pasta Lunch

Fiori Arrabbiatta at Katie's Pizza & Pasta

Fiori Arrabbiatta at Katie’s Pizza & Pasta

The Ambience at Katie’s Pizza and Pasta

Katie’s Osteria brings a bit of Europe to Town & Country. The decor delights the senses just as the food does, which creates a place diners love to visit again and again.

Wide-open, light, airy rooms set the mood with plants blooming in all corners. A gold accented bar shines, bringing a touch of glamour to the space. Tables are lined with mismatched chairs, which make this place feel a little more like home. Plus modern artwork by Katie’s parents adorn the walls for a little added color.

Katie's Pizza and Pasta Clayton Rd

About My Look

This colorful and comfy look makes me long for a vacation. If I were in Italy, I’d wear this outfit for a stroll on the piazza. But since I’m not, a lemon and striped breton with a flattering bow midi skirt looks perfect for lunch at my local osteria. Cute pops of color from head to toe make it easy to tie contrasting pieces together. I’m all about yellow, particularly lemon motifs and bright mimosa sandals.

Boden Spring 2018 Scattered Lemons Breton and Kiera Skirt

If you’re looking for other gorgeous Italian restaurants in St. Louis, don’t forget to try Sardella in Clayton, now open for brunch daily.

Don’t Miss Out on the Sweet Treats at Pint Size Bakery

April 7, 2018  |  Food 4 comments

If you know me, you know I have the world’s biggest sweet tooth. When I treat myself, it usually involves food, preferably something sweet and chocolatey. While searching for my next sugary indulgence, I stumbled upon Pint Size Bakery, the cutest cafe in South City St. Louis.

With a focus on high quality local and seasonal ingredients, chefs Christy and Nancy churn out new recipes regularly. That means new treats to dazzle the senses almost every time you visit! Plus everything at the shop is peanut-free.

Pint Size Bakery St. Louis

Inside Pint Size Bakery

I knew I had to visit this St. Louis bakery when I saw its colorful wallpaper on Instagram. When a restaurant spends a little extra love on its ambience, there are often other thoughtful things to look forward to. Plus it was rated one of the Best Restaurants in St. Louis this year so you know it’s good.

Considering it’s a cafe with free wi-fi, you’ll want to eat in, enjoy your time, and savor every bite. And possibly make multiple trips to the counter to catch the latest sweet out of the oven.

Brookie and Creme Pies at Pint Size Bakery

Clockwise from top: Brookie, Chai Latte, Lintzer Cookies, Sprinkle Cookie, Raspberry Fudgie

Sweet Treats at Pint Size Bakery

Pint Size Bakery Menu

According to Pint Size Bakery, you can’t find fresher baked goods anywhere else in St. Louis. Made from scratch daily, treats come out warm from the oven from morning until close in the afternoon. Using wholesome ingredients, their menu offers popular staples like Oatmeal Creme Pies, Sammies, and Brookies (brownie + cookie), as well as rotating items that change with the selection of seasonal ingredients.

You’ll drool over the Pint Size Bakery menu, including savory breakfast items, Kaldi’s coffee, as well as pastries and sweets. What I absolutely love about this bakery is that everything is baked fresh and it shows in each bite. It tastes like something your grandmother would make. Each treat I tried was to die for — smooth and buttery, chewy yet crisp, dense and moist.

Blogger Yasmin Hakim at Pint Size Bakery

Blouse: Ann Taylor / Jeans: Articles of Society / Loafers: Bottines (similar) / Earrings: c/o Joya

Desserts at Pint Size Bakery

Interior and Exterior of Pint Size Bakery

My favorite item on the menu the day I visited was the Raspberry Fudgie (pictured below), a seasonal item. Two chocolate cookies sandwich raspberry cream with a rich fudge center. I’m still dreaming about this delightful dessert. I heard amazing things about the Dreamsicle sammie too, which is on my list to try.

Enjoying a raspberry creme pie at Pint Size Bakery St. Louis

Not in South City? If you’ve got a hankering for sweets, you can also try one of my other favorite bakeries in Chesterfield or the Bourbon Pecan Pie at Grace in Tower Grove. The marshmallow fluff on top is bonkers.

Beautiful Balayage Highlights at Thirteenth and Washington

April 4, 2018  |  Beauty 4 comments

Why spend your time getting your hair done somewhere ordinary? When coloring my hair, I usually spend at least 2 hours at the salon. I might as well try somewhere that feels like a sanctuary. I visited the Thirteenth and Washington salon, now located at 412 North Tucker Blvd, to try their balayage highlights service.

The modern meets vintage loft is filled with cute corners and vignettes that truly make this a unique spot to get your hair done. Not to mention the stellar hair styling by studio creator Kristen Linares.

The salon at Thirteenth and Washington

Owner Kristen Linares has been working hair magic in St. Louis since 2010. She has extensive experience in hair styling for events and editorial work, having collaborated with some of the city’s top magazines and photographers.

Kristen Linares Thirteenth and Washington

Owner Kristen Linares at her workstation

Thirteenth and Washington salon

The Thirteenth and Washington Studio

Recently I visited her brand new studio on North Tucker. My head did a lot of whipping around as I looked in awe at the all the beautiful details. Refurbished pieces from local furniture store Hammer & Hand included mirrors and dressers from Asia. Vintage suitcases from Treasure Aisles were stacked into eclectic side tables next to comfy and colorful chairs. These global touches created a lovely contrast with the exposed brick walls, bright studio lighting, and modern loft space.

Chic interiors at Thirteenth and Washington

How Balayage Highlights Give You That Sun Kissed Look

When I finally had an eyeful, I sat down to get balayage highlights. This was the first time I had my hair colored by Kristen. Having dark hair, I tend to be a bit cautious about highlights. Oftentimes, it can end up overly chunky or too light in the wrong stylist’s hands. But Kristen nailed the color on her first try.

The Balayage treatment at Thirteenth and Washington

Balayage originated with the French in the seventies. It uses a sweeping freehand technique for natural looking highlights as opposed to foil, which usually produces more uniform highlights. The goal is to create the look of sun-kissed highlights, which I think Kristen did successfully here.

Balayage Highlights

While mostly used as a salon, the studio is also framed as a collaborative space for creatives such as photographers, stylists, bloggers, hair and makeup artists, and more. If you’re looking to do a photo shoot, have an event, or work with some seriously creative stylists on your next project, connect with Kristen.

The salon at 13th and Washington

I thoroughly enjoyed my experience at Thirteenth and Washington with stylist Kristen Linares. Book an appointment or follow the studio on Instagram.

Other beauty treatments I love? Learn all about my experiences trying eyelash extensions and hair extensions.

Free People Uptown Girl Blazer

Blazer: Free People / Jeans: Joe’s Jeans / Sneakers: Superga c/o Express / Earrings & Bag: H&M

Disclaimer: I received a complementary balayage treatment in exchange for my review. All opinions are my own.

A Day of Southern Food and Style with Grace Meat + Three

March 26, 2018  |  Food 15 comments

Crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside, and flavorful everywhere — that’s all I want in my fried chicken. I visited Grace Meat + Three where I enjoyed the best St. Louis fried chicken ever. This fast casual dining spot has been rated one of the city’s top new restaurants and now I know why. It’s only been a few days and I’m already craving it again. Take a tour through this Tower Grove eatery where the fried food is crispy and the sides are a plenty.

Blogger Yasmin Hakim at Grace Meat + Three

Dress: c/o Boden / Sweater: c/o Boden / Purse: c/o Boden / Shoes: c/o Boden / Sunglasses: Nordstrom (similar) / Earrings: Target (similar)

St. Louis Fried Chicken at Grace Meat + Three

Originally the location for Sweetie Pie’s, an Oprah favorite, Chef Rick Lewis and his wife Elisa transformed it into a new hotspot for Southern cooking. Featuring modern country decor, this fast casual space elevates your dining experience.

There’s so much to cast your eye upon when you enter. The bar is a mix of marble and reclaimed wood with convenient hooks for your coat or purse. The sun drenched windows are outfitted with adorable striped awnings reminiscent of a county fair. Local art including a mural of St. Louis history adorns the wall. And around the corner, there’s a large dining room in an arresting shade of blue.

The Dining Room at Grace Meat + Three

Inside Grace Meat + Three St. Louis

The Bar at Grace Meat + Three St. Louis

Grace Meat + Three and the Best St. Louis Fried Chicken

The very first item on the menu — twice cooked wings — are not to be missed. Sure you go to Grace Meat + Three for the fried chicken, but you can’t leave without trying these wings.

First they’re smoked and then they’re fried. The flavor comes out in layers, where you can easily discern the taste of the smoky rub and the spices of the crispy outer crust. And the white barbecue sauce is the cherry on top. The flavors on these wings are a feast for the senses.

When I asked the host whether I should go with the Twice Cooked Wings or Rick’s Famous Fried Chicken, a recipe Chef Rick has perfected over the years, he said he couldn’t choose. Normally that’s what most restaurant employees would feel obligated to say. But he was right. You can’t choose between the two — you have to get them both!

When I say this is the juiciest fried chicken I’ve had, it’s the truth. Chef Rick says it’s in the brine. Plus it’s made to order so you know it comes out hot and fresh.

Twice Cooked Wings at Grace Meat + Three St. Louis

You have to try the twice cooked wings at Grace Meat + Three

Boden Broderie Dress on Bangles & Bungalows

Country Style in a White Eyelet Dress

I feel like I’d taken a page out of Reese Witherspoon’s book in this white eyelet dress. If she was going on a picnic in Nashville filled with Southern home cooking, I suspect she might wear a spring dress along these lines. I felt right at home at Grace in my ultra cheery look.

This dress is actually called the Isabella Broderie Dress from Boden. I had no idea what Broderie was so I looked it up. Broderie anglaise is a needlework technique that uses cutwork, specifically oval holes (or eyelets), that are covered with buttonhole stitches.

Boden Leah Jewelled Flats on Bangles & Bungalows

Shoes: c/o Boden / Purse: c/o Boden

If you’re visiting the city, definitely add Grace Meat + Three to your list of St. Louis restaurants to try. Grace has way more goodies on the menu, including vegetarian options like Country Fried Mofu and Fried Green Tomatoes. And don’t forget the dessert! The Bourbon Pecan Pie has a marshmallow frosted topping that’s to die for.

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Beat the Spring Chill with these Beautiful Capes

March 22, 2018  |  Fashion 14 comments

The first day of spring has come and gone, but for many of us it still feels like winter. All over Instagram, we’re popping out florals and bright colors in the hope that we’ll channel warmer weather. Here in St. Louis, it’s quite gloomy with rain and wind in the forecast for the next week. To stay comfortable in this transitional weather, I’m turning to capes — women’s cape coats, cape jackets, and cape sweaters that is.

Cape: Draper James / Turtleneck: Banana Republic (similar) / Pants: J.Crew (similar) / Loafers: na-kd (similar) / Clutch: c/o Express (similar)

This style is universally flattering, especially because it hides the worst offender— the muffin top. Plus the sleeves give you plenty of air conditioning in case it suddenly gets warm. So it’s perfect for transitional style in this weather.

Capes to Try

Here are a few great capes to try. Since capes are always in fashion, these classic styles will work for you season after season. Plus they’re great for the office, in case the air conditioning is on full blast.

 

Stay warm and let’s hope for signs of spring soon! For more cape style check out this gorgeous striped look.

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Where to Enjoy the Most Amazing Breakfast Toast in St. Louis

March 20, 2018  |  Food 7 comments

Most mornings I wake up with a hankering for something savory like scrambled eggs (Gordon Ramsay style) on toast. I keep it simple. But these days toast is trendy. A template for gastronomic art, breakfast toast is often adorned with brightly colored toppings like fresh avocado, poached eggs, heirloom tomatoes, and more. I’m no culinary artist. So to get my toast fix I visited Milque Toast Bar, a unique brunch spot in St Louis with the prettiest breakfast toast I’d ever seen.

Milque Toast St. Louis on Bangles & Bungalows

Tunic: c/o Soft Surroundings / Capris: c/o Soft Surroundings / Sandals: c/o Soft Surroundings / Earrings: c/o Soft Surroundings / Sunglasses: Nordstrom (similar) / Crossbody bag: Rebecca Minkoff (similar)

Avocado Toast with Egg Salad at Milque Toast Bar St. Louis

About Milque Toast Bar

Inspired by Scandinavian Smørrebrød, the artfully plated toast is piled high with fresh ingredients, sourced mostly from farmers and local markets. On my visit to Milque Toast Bar, I enjoyed the avocado toast with truffled egg salad. Also on the Milque Toast menu were an egg casserole, a cheesy garlic toast, and a couple of wild cards on the savory side. On the sweet side, they offered s’mores, fruit and cheese, and fluffer nutter among other mouthwatering breakfast toast options.

One order of toast is quite filling, especially with a choice of side. But 3 – 5 toasts are great for tasting and sharing. Visit often with new menu items weekly. Discover what’s on the Milque Toast menu daily by visiting their Instagram or for instant cravings.

Inside Milque Toast Bar St. Louis

Kale Is Not My Enemy

To be honest, I never really liked kale until I had it here. Part of it had to be the visual beauty of the fresh and vibrant greens. The flavors in the dressing were soaked through with a light touch. According to my server Cheryl, the key to yummy kale was giving it a light massage. I ate every last bite of kale and I am not even a salad person.

There were sweet and savory flavors mixed in with cranberries and crunchy puffed corn peppering each bite. All of that crunch along with the hearty toast, creamy avocado, and spicy truffled egg salad created an altogether dreamy mix of flavors.

Soft Surroundings Desert Tunic in White

Soft Surroundings Desert Tunic

I’m adding Milque Toast Bar to my list of favorite St. Louis brunch options. I’d love to visit again with a few girlfriends and nibble on a platter of toast creations.

And if you love this look, you’ll also love this other tunic over jeans style.

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