Southern France

After leaving the beautiful and serene Chateau La Durantie my cousin, grandmother, parents, aunt, new uncle, boyfriend and I climbed into our rental car (van – classy!) and headed south.


During our ALL DAY drive from Lanouaille to our ultimate destination of Bordeaux we did a couple of things. First and foremost, we drove in circles. No seriously. We actually passed through one town three separate times. That has to be some sort of record. Needless to say, alternately ignoring and blindly following your GPS while traversing small country roads in Southern France is not necessarily the way to go… But on the plus side, no one died and we did ultimately arrive in the correct place. The key word being “ultimately.”

The second thing we did was stop and enjoy the views and architecture of a handful of small towns and villages, including Sarlat, Domme & Gageac de Roc (pictured above). My favorite was Sarlat, which was adorable and picturesque, but they were all pretty gorgeous.

Fashion: Given that we were road-tripping for a good portion of the day we weren’t terribly fashion-conscious. My favorite fashion moment of the day was actually discovering chocolate shoes in the window of a candy shop!


Food: I munched nuts and Larabars in the car for most of the day so that I didn’t turn into the hulk (seriously, I’m kind of scary when I’m hungry) and we stopped for a midday meal in Sarlat. The group was nice enough to let me pick where we ate, since I’m the hardest to feed, and I found a cute little restaurant near the town square that actually had a section on the menu for vegetables! I think everyone’s favorite food memory from this day were the macaroons though, we stopped and got three or four different varieties to try, and that was the quietest we were all day. 🙂

Fitness: There was so much walking during this day that my lower back actually started to fail and I had to sit out the last stop of the afternoon. I think it was a combination of no core exercises or stretching, hours seated in an uncomfortable position (as the shortest person in the car I was squeezed in the middle of third row of seats) and lots of walking on cobbled streets.

Lodgings:  After hours and hours (and hours) in the car, we arrived in scenic Saint-Émilion, a gorgeous little city on a hill surrounded by patchworked green countryside. Truly one of the most stunning views that we saw during our trip. Unfortunately for us, despite the clock reading 6pm, this wasn’t our final destination. Saying goodbye to my family, Sean and I jumped into a taxi and took a 30 minute ride to Bordeaux where we “checked in” to our hotel. I use sarcastic ” ” marks because it was a really unique system since there was no front desk, just a podium with a print out of who is staying in which room. We climbed the stairs and found our room which was spacious, clean and new, grabbed the keys and left for some sightseeing.

Sights: We spend close to two hours wandering aimlessly around the city center, gazing at the architecture, checking out the fancy hotels nearby and getting thoroughly lost. I feel like I should make a confession at this point. I have the worst sense of direction. I was completely and utterly lost for 90% of this trip. Even looking at the metro & bus maps in Paris, Bordeaux and later Madrid, I still couldn’t figure out where I was. Clearly traveling alone would be a BAD idea.

Travel:  After just one night in Bordeaux (we decided we could have easily stayed another 2 nights at least) we woke up, checked out and found the closest grocery store to stock up on food for the next leg of our journey. While I got more tabouli (the French really seem to like it!), veggie patties,  fruit & nuts, what did my boyfriend get? A roasted chicken. Which he proceeded to eat, with his hands, over the course of our 4 hour train ride. And no, he did not have napkins. The entire train smelled like chicken!

Highlights: Sean’s favorite part of this leg of our journey were the views in Domme, which was a tiny cliff side city inside a retaining wall overlooking the Dordogne. Very medieval! My highlight was the phenomenal hotel that my aunt and uncle stayed at in Saint-Émilion, we joined them for a glass of champagne and enjoyed the views before we caught our taxi to Bordeaux.

Stay tuned for my favorite part of the trip, sunny San Sebastian!

Continue Reading · Comments { 1 }

Hippie Love

As Hippie Chic is one of the most highly viewed posts since MCLV started last spring, I decided to do a follow-up post to celebrate the fabulous 60’s & 70’s inspired looks that are all the rage this fall.

Now follow me down the rabbit hole and let’s revisit some of our favorite hippies of all times… (Cue the Jefferson Airplane soundtrack)


Boho is short for Bohemian, which is defined as: “a person, as an artist or writer, who lives and acts free of regard for conventional rules and practices. ” The boho styles of the 60’s were more than just a fashion statement, they were an escape for women from the confinement of the clothes and social norms prevalent in the 50’s. They were free, loose and created a new style that trickles down to us today.

Original boho-chic icons: Janis Joplin, Talitha Getty, Stevie Nicks & Steven Tyler

Characterizations of the style: Loose layers, beads, tinted round sunglasses, bright colors, tie-dye, vests, boots, headbands, chunky jewelry, scarves, stacked bracelets, floppy hats, patchwork

Modern day equivalents: Kate Moss, The Olsens, Sienna Miller & Johnny Depp

Fashion Show Love: Matthew Williamson Fall 2011 RTW

Matthew Williamson Fall 2011 Ready-to-Wear

What to buy for Fall: Maxi & midi length skirts & dresses, flowy blouses and boots.

{Aqua Paisley Dress – $110 @ Bloomingdale’s}

{Polka dot blouse by Free People – $100 @}

Mod: The other fashion sub-culture of the 60’s was known as Mod, short for Modernist, which originated in London and was heavily influenced by the music of the time and the all night dance clubs that started appearing.

Original Mod icons: Twiggy, Edie Sedgewick, Jean Shrimpton & The Beatles

Characterizations of the style: Shift dresses, mini skirts, go-go boots, monochromatic suits, flats, knee socks, plaid coats, colored tights, Peter Pan collars, fake eyelashes, exaggerated eyeliner

Modern day equivalents: Nicole Richie, Zooey Deschanel & Alexa Chung

Fashion Show Love: Prada Fall 2011 RTW

Prada Fall 2011 Ready-to-Wear

What to buy for fall: It’s all about the dresses & outerwear, think shifts & dropped, belted waists. Love!

{Ali Ro Printed Shift dress – $140 (on sale) @ Neiman Marcus}

{Faux-Fur Collar Peacoat – $100 (on sale) @ Victoria’s Secret}

Rock n’ Roll Hippie: The hippie trend of the 1970’s was a continuation of the 60’s Boho style, with some serious rock star additions, and was incredibly popular with both the men and women of the psychedelic rock era.

Original Hippie icons: The Grateful Dead, Stevie Nicks, Debbie Harry & The Rolling Stones

Characterizations of the style: Bell bottoms, suede, fringe, halter tops, hip huggers, leather, bandanas, jean jackets, studs, chains

Modern day equivalents: Taylor Momson, Avril Lavigne & K$sha

Fashion Show Love: Emilio Pucci

What to buy for fall: In a perfect world we would all be ready to hop up on stage to channel our inner rock star with this bag, but given the price tag I think we can live with more – ahem – reasonably priced accessories…

{Top left: BebStu Riga belt – $65 @, Top right: Martin & Ricci Gunmetal Plated Feist Bracelet – $90 @ Max & Cleo, Bottom: Rockstar Wristlet – $70 @ Bebe}

Disco Era: Drugs, sex & rock n’ roll! 70’s disco was all about music, dancing all night at clubs and was heavily influenced by the smaller factions that it was composed of (gays and minorities like African-Americans & Latinos). If you visualize one thing when you hear the word “disco,” it should be STUDIO 54!

Original Disco icons: YSL, Bianca Jaggar, Ziggy Stardust (aka David Bowe) & John Travolta

Characterizations of the style: Platforms, sequins, glitter, wrap dresses, hotpants, le Smoking Suit, high-waisted jeans, lamé suits for men & women

Modern day equivalents: It’s still ALLLLL about Iman. Yesterday, today and tomorrow.

Fashion Show Love: Balmain

What to buy for fall: Diane Von Furstenburg wrap dresses & anything by Halston Heritage. Fine, those were the easy answers. But honestly, I’m loving all of the disco-inspired separates out there, that way you can inject a little glam into your wardrobe without risking overload (and please, for the love of all that is holy, only resort to this if it’s a Halloween costume. Thank you. From all of us.)

{Karen Kane Sequin Blazer – $180 @ Bloomingdale’s}

{Martinez Valero ‘Chase’ Sandal – $75 (on sale) @ Nordstrom}

{Runway photos from}

Still in the mood for some more inspiration before you hit the stores to stock up on hippilicious goodies? Here’s some help from The Outnet and TopShop.

Now be off my little hippies – Peace!

Continue Reading · Comments { 1 }

(Non-FW) Looks of The Week

In case you’re sick of looking at models, editors, buyers and A-Listers at the four major fashion shows, here are some… Oh never mind, it’s all the same people, but at least they’re not at fashion shows in these pictures. 🙂

Kirstin Dunst glowing at the premiere of her new movie. I think she looks really beautiful here and though you can't tell, her hair is really cute and her dress has a keyhole in the back.

Olivia Palermo on Project Runway. I love love love this look and may put together a Style File for it. The skirt in cute & fun with a great 70s vibe and she keeps the rest of her look neutral to let the skirt take center stage.

Selena Gomez looking cute & low-key, this is a great alternative to the ubiquitous LBD.

Taylor Lautner & Lily Collins at their movie premiere looking adorable in black. Rarely can a guy pull off a t-shirt w/ suit look, but this one works. And her Versace dress is just the thing!

Claire Danes at the Emmy's looking sleek and modern. A very unique look that I think paid off.

Evan has really been hitting her stride lately and this is another gorgeous example. Absolutely striking.

Bananas! Nina Doprev devastated in red at the Emmy's, it was one of my favorite dresses by far.

Naya Rivera from Glee looking chic in black & white on the red carpet for American Horror Story. Some of the Glee girls tend to look a little... Matronly. Then there's Lea. I feel like this is a great in between look, age appropriate and fun, but classic.

Mary Elizabeth Winstead (I admit, I had to look her up on IMDB) looked adorable in this Dolce & Gabbana dress. I thought I was sick of stars, but apparently I just wanted to see them in a fresh new way. Et voila!

Jaime King & Selma Blair looking chic in black and white at the Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic.

Alexa Chung at the ANDAM Dinner after PFW

Amber Heard isn't exactly a newcomer but with her (recently cancelled) TV series Playboy Club and the upcoming Rum Diary w/ Johnny Depp, she's popping up all over the red carpets. She's a gorgeous, gorgeous girl and likes to keep things classic, which suits her incredibly well.

Michael Michele looking utterly flawless in white on the Ides premiere red carpet. Whoa!

Head over to TLo for a rundown of Miss Lea Michele in Paris in a great 70’s look here. Floppy black hat & kick-ass boots included. 
And for the love of all that is holy, this is how to work a red carpet ladies! 

Honestly, could this woman look more phenomenal?

Continue Reading · Comments { 1 }

Chateau La Durantie

The next leg of my vacation consisted of four spectacular days with my extended family at the Chateau La Durantie, less than ten minutes from the village of Lanouaille.

Not bad, huh?

Fashion: The fashion at La Durantie was allllll about the wedding. My aunt and her boyfriend of 8 years tied the knot in the sitting room of the house while 20 of us watched with barely concealed glee. Shortly after their “I do’s” we popped the bubbly and got down to the business of eating, drinking, toasting and dancing our booties off!
Food: We had some catered meals while we were here, including the wedding dinner and brunch the next morning, as well as two borderline gourmet dinners prepared by my new cousin and cousin-in-law, Taylor and Melissa. Sour dough baguette pizzas, gluten-free pasta, homemade pasta sauce, tomatoes & pumpkins from the garden and tons of salads. Yummy! And when we went to a small town nearby to get flowers for the wedding, I found a health food store with tofu! Tofu in France! 🙂 Needless to say I was a happy, happy girl while I had access to the kitchen at La Durantie.
Fitness: Walking, sightseeing in the nearby towns, bike riding, a short run, the Chateau even had tennis courts and a pool! It was nice to have more than a day or two in a single place and once we settled in we were able to explore the beautiful countryside between summer showers. I also spent a healthy chunk of my time sprawled across the bed in our sun-drenched bedroom finishing my book.
Lodgings: The pictures above hardly do La Durantie justice. It was an older building still undergoing renovations, but given that it didn’t have plumbing or running water a few years ago, we were all pleasantly surprised by how modern the facilities were. There were ten bedrooms on three different floors, and the top floor was for us “kids” (the youngest of whom was my 22-year-old cousin). Running up and down those stairs dozens of times each day did wonders for my legs!
Travel: Since we still had our rented vans we did a couple day trips and when we left the Chateau on Monday eight of us piled in and began a NINE HOUR drive to Saint-Émilion, which for the record, should have taken two.
Highlights: My boyfriend’s favorite part of the entire trip was the wedding dinner, which was a pepper-encrusted steak (I had ratatouille which was great as well), and he honestly hasn’t stopped talking about this meal since we got home. He ate his, as well as most of my mother’s, the 13 year old sitting next to me’s entire steak and half of her mother’s. He was stuffed by happy.
Stay tuned for Bordeaux, Spain and the adventures from the longest car ride ever!
(If you’d like to catch up, you can check out London here and Paris here)
Continue Reading · Comments { 4 }

Links You’ll Love


Women’s Clothing Sizes: Is a 4 really a 4?

Fabulous at every age – Secrets of the World’s Most Stylish Women. I can’t believe they left Carmen Dell’Orefice off this list. I’m shocked and appalled!

Garance Dore shooting the Chloe Spring 2012 Look Book here and the Paule Ka behind the scenes video here.

Happy Birthday Ralph!


Great quinoa recipes and fun new ways to try this super seed over at the Fitnessista, or try her Black Bean Quinoa Burgers. Yum!

The Five Ws – And One H – of Weight loss at the Huffington Post.

Steve Gorton / Getty Images

TIME: Chocolate Lovers Have Lower Risk of Stroke

Multivitamins – Ya or Nay? Is It Time To Stop Taking A multivitamin?

Continue Reading · Comments { 0 }