Home Sweet Home

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Hey guys and dolls! Long time no post, huh? A whole week since my last update… crap. Here’s the deal: We moved over the weekend, and every day leading up to it (along with every day since) has been 100% focused on the house. I’ve been a bit too busy accidentally stabbing myself in the hand with dull screwdrivers to stop for an outfit post — plus, we just got our hot water turned on, so my hair has not been at its best. I won’t bore you with the details, but home ownership thus far has been a combination of joy, panic, debt, doubt, and bliss. I feel very grown-up… and also like I want to call my mom. Or just get a few more minutes of sleep. Or stop buying anything for like a second. At least we’re down the street from a hardware store? (And like five different places that serve coffee. Hallelujah.)

I promise to unpack my wardrobe soon. Till then, wish me luck. The soon-to-be Cain Family has found a home!

Mixing Patterns Because I Have No Choice

Remember when I mentioned we’re moving? The apartment is currently at the worst part of packing: unorganized, messy, and unreachable. Some things are in nicely-labeled boxes, but most things are in half-filled open boxes spread across the floor. It looks like an Urban Outfitters on 50%-off clearance day (or the shoe section at every Midwestern Target on any given Tuesday). Somewhere in that monstrosity are my summer shorts. That was fine when I started packing — in April — but it’s getting a little too warm for jeans and boots. When I went digging for something to wear this weekend, I found one pair of highly-patterned shorts… and a whole bunch of equally busy tops. Polka dots with stripes, snakeskin, and floral print? I haven’t slept for more than five hours in weeks, so why the hell not? It’s amazing I’m still brushing my hair at this point.

Oh yeah, I added the pizza necklace for good measure, obviously.

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Currently wearing… Striped blouse,  Cynthia Rowley, TJX [SIMILAR / SEEN HERE] | Floral blouse, JCP [SIMILAR / SEEN HERE] | Shorts, Target [SIMILAR / SEEN HERE] | Pizza necklace [HERE] | Flats, Nine West, TJX [SIMILAR / SEEN HERE] | Clutch, DSW [SIMILAR]

Funny story about the move: I panic when it comes to money. I have cried on two separate occasions in a Best Buy because of substantial purchase fear. (It was a television and a camera, so we’re not even talking about a shit ton of money.) Since we purchased a home I have had to/chosen to buy three large appliances, a lawn mower, a mattress and bed frame, fifteen blinds, two rugs, a bar, a dining table and six dining chairs. None of it has made me panic — at least not for more than a few seconds. I freaked out more over a less-than-$400 Nikon than I did on signing for a house with a 30-year mortgage. However, I have flipped twice in the last week about the cost of picking up food on the go, so I am apparently channeling my energy elsewhere. (Read: “Damn it, Lance, they add a $1.50 UPCHARGE to the sandwich if I add avocado! Screw this place! Who needs dinner?! WE’RE NOT MADE OF MONEY.”) Logical, Julia; way to go.

Wedding Wednesday: Should I Hire a ‘Trendy’ Photographer?

According to The Knot’s latest figures, a photographer typically costs about 8% of your wedding budget. For those of us trying to spend less than the $31k national wedding average (who perhaps cut out a reception band, a planner, or a videographer to have extra left over for the best photos) a high-quality photographer might take up a much larger percentage of the total spent. To make sure that money is spent correctly, my ridiculously-talented wedding photographer Lillian Peters of Chameleon Imagery has agreed to share some tips and tricks to help all future brides and grooms. Up first we deal with the problem Pinterest and other wedding-focused websites have created: When it comes to photos, do I go trendy, or do I stick with timeless?

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The internet makes it so easy to see countless wedding photos, and many vary greatly from those of our parents and grandparents. How would you describe ‘trendy’ wedding photos? Could you describe a few examples?

Occasionally I get emails from people asking if I do trendy edits. Many of them describe this as sort of like an Instagram filter look. I am by no means hating on Instagram, because I’m definitely an Insta-addict, but most of these photos have a very high-contrast look with over-saturated colors that fall more on the warmer side. I feel like wedding pictures edited in this style are like the puffy sleeve wedding dresses of the 80’s (sorry Mom!) Right now, they’re popular and people love it, but 10 to 20 years from now, brides will look at their wedding photos and say, “What was I thinking?!”

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How about ‘timeless’ wedding photos? Could you describe a few examples?

Clean edits with natural looking colors that are vibrant, but not over the top, are what I would describe as a “timeless look.” Essentially, you don’t want to be able to name the exact year your wedding was in with just a quick glance at the photos. If you look at your relatives’ photos from years and years ago, and you still think to yourself, “Wow! That’s gorgeous!” it’s probably a timeless look. Think classy like Jackie Kennedy! And you can never go wrong with a good black-and-white image!

What should brides-to-be keep in mind about ‘trendy’ wedding photos?

There’s no shame in loving the trendy photo styles! If vintage filters and Pinterest poses are what you adore, then by all means, it’s your day and you should have them! But make sure your photographer has enough artistic merit to be able to create art that is unique to you and your significant other on your special day.

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Is there a proper balance to the amount of ‘trendy’ and ‘timeless’ photos that should be taken on a couple’s wedding day?

If you want the trendy-looking edits on your pictures, make sure your photographer can also provide you with the original files or a clean-edit version of each photo. That way, when the “Sierra” and “Earlybird” Instagram look is no longer in fashion, you still have beautiful, clean images to be proud of from your wedding day!

Should most photographers who can shoot one style be able to shoot the other?

There are many different artists for many different kinds of people. There are some photographers that are flexible and well-rounded in their style, and there are some that have perfected their niche. When you see a photographer’s portfolio you will probably get a good idea of which kind they seem to be!

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Are there any warning signs brides-to-be should look out for in regards to ‘trendy’ photos or photographers?

If every photo in a photographer’s portfolio looks like it is only Pinterest pose after Pinterest pose, you should probably ask to see some examples of their photojournalistic images. While some photographers specialize in a photojournalism style more than others, every good wedding photographer needs to be able to capture candid moments. Those uninterrupted genuine memories are what will tell the story of your day!

Keep an eye out for more tips from Lillian in the coming months! (And engagement photos soon! Eek!)


Hey dolls! This post was sponsored, but all the opinions are my own.

Moving Month Uniform

I cannot find all of my clothes. Or my craft supplies. Or a few of my mugs. Or my sanity. We’re in the process of moving into our first house (in addition to getting situated at the new job and planning a wedding), and the combination of a house full of boxes and an apartment full of boxes is nearly catastrophic. While I wait until the day I am reunited with my missing belongings, like my black knit moto jacket or my Betsey Johnson floral heart earrings, I will continue to wear much of the same. My current favorite is a white chambray shirt, which styles perfectly for the workday or the weekend.

Workday

Weekend

Looking for a white chambray button-up? Check out options by Halogen, Topshop, Treasure&Bond, and Old Navy.

Pizza Party

It has been a crazy few weeks in real life, which means it seems like a super mellow few weeks in digital life. Let me fill in the blanks the blog has left: Long nights with coffee and moving boxes and paperwork and day-job-work and responsibilities out the ass… TGIF just isn’t explaining today’s emotions well enough. To welcome in the weekend, I wanted to bring one amazing new accessory into your life: pizza.

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This custom necklace from Wanderlustrous Jewelry was a gift from my dear friend Erin, who wears the same necklace ever-so-sweetly imprinted with ‘TACOS’. It’s like grown-up BFF necklaces, but instead of telling the world how we feel about each other, these tell the world how we feel about food and our general commitment to healthy living. Is it any wonder we became fast friends when we met in college?

I hope your weekend is full of junk food and jammie pants. XO.

PS: Don’t forget to follow along on Instagram and Twitter, where I seem less like a sleep-deprived robot and more like a real girl!