#ootd [spring stripes]

I’m back! From outer space!

Nah–I’ve just been busy focusing on some of my other interests the past year. (My other interests primarily being stuffing my face with food then running to keep the aforementioned food from getting too cozy in my body.) And, as a writer, inspiration most certainly ebbs and flows. While my figurative cup runneth over with fashion inspiration, my brain lacketh the interest in blogging about it.

To be honest, motivation to return to this blog has been hard to find as I’ve realized I’m a teeny-tiny voice in an ocean full of opinions about fashion, food, and life. What makes my opinions worth reading? Why should people support this endeavour? I’m more confident than ever in the young woman I’ve become, but I’m not sure I have an answer to that question. What I do know is that I’m doing this blog for myself as a form of creative expression, not for the promise of attention or commercial endorsements. (Although, it would be super cool to get paid to write someday! A girl can dream.) Continue reading

Winter Pieces and Spring Essentials (and a blog update)

Christina’s Best Life Update

Christina's Best Life Title

Greetings, friends! And welcome to the new and improved version of Christina’s Best Life! After months of inactivity I thought a new design would motivate me to start blogging again. In the months since starting this blog I’ve found that, while super fun, blogging is a time-consuming undertaking. When I began this blog it was a much-needed source of inspiration at a time when I was disinterested in nearly everything in my life. Since Thanksgiving (which is about the time of my last entry), I’ve taken a more active role in creating my own happiness, instead of expecting others (mainly my husband) to make me happy. With my renewed sense of self-awareness has come an openness toward new experiences (which means I’ve had less free time to blog).

That being said, moving forward, the purpose of this blog will reflect my wider range of interests. While still primarily an outlet for my creative writing, Christina’s Best Life now includes samples of my freelance photography and graphic design work. I also hope that the new design makes my content more accessible for y’all. I mean…you all. (It’s official. the South is affecting my speech.)

Now, onto the more fun portion of this entry–a look at some of my favorite winter-to-spring looks from a recent trip I took to Ohio! Continue reading

#ootd [sunny days & fuzzy sweaters]

glasses//warby parker ainsworth in elderberry
blouse//lauren conrad for kohl’s (old)//similar polka dot chiffon secretary blouse
sweater//h&m (old)//similar mohair-blend sweater in light pink
pants//gap (old)//similar 1969 always skinny skimmer jeans
boots//report jesslyn harness boot [originally featured in Sweaters, dresses, and leggings–OH MY!]

I’m back from a brief hiatus. I’ve been quite busy with some freelance work, and I just haven’t had a good chunk of time to sit down and write. On the plus side, I’ve started about two or three posts that I intend to finish before Christmas! (That’s my goal, anyway.)

I’d forgotten how good pink and green look together until I created this outfit. Green’s earthiness is a nice contrast to pink’s femininity. I added a high-low polka-dotted blouse to break up the two solid colors.

I purchased this cozy pink sweater after seeing it on Lana Del Ray, the face of H&M’s 2012 holiday campaign. I don’t wear this sweater too often because it’s quite itchy. I also find it challenging to layer heavier sweaters, like this one. I don’t want to wear long-sleeves underneath because I’ll get too hot. But anything shorter than long-sleeves leaves a lot of skin exposed to the sweater’s itchy wrath! First world problems, indeed. Continue reading

Fashion Throwback [Woman in a Romper]

Christina in marching band | Christina's Best Life

FOUND FOOTAGE: The only digital photographic evidence that confirms I was in band. The marching band story is not a cover up, folks.

The Back Story
In August I had the honor of being a bridesmaid at my friend Maria’s wedding. I met her in high school when I was a freshman and she was a sophomore. We both played trumpet in the marching band.

We shared a cabin at band camp in the summer of 2003 and became friends within the week. She nicknamed me gremlin. (I’d like to think it’s because I was [and still am] adorable and small, not because I resembled a reptile-like monster.)  Since then, our friendship has been one of the most authentic connections I’ve experienced.

Maria looked beautiful on her wedding day, and her twins made adorable flower girls. The parts I most enjoyed were catching up with old friends at the reception and dancing the night away in my fuchsia flip flops.

Woman in a Romper
Today’s fashion throwback features the army-green romper I wore to the rehearsal and dinner the night before the wedding. I’m disappointed I haven’t featured this outfit sooner. However, I think it’s a look that could still be worn going into fall, especially here in Nashville since it’s still in the 70s and 80s.

Continue reading

#ootd [two girls walk into a bar…]

Last Friday night comedian Ralphie May performed at The Kent Stage (in Kent, OH). While I was not in a constant state of laughter, as you would hope to be at a comedy show, May did have some some comedy gold hidden in between all the raunchy sex jokes. Joining me in intermittent laughter was my best friend, and today’s featured outfit-of-the-day-er, Allison.

With Allison at my wedding | Christina's Best Life

From my wedding this summer. Allison was my maid of honor!

Allison has certainly been an indirect influence to this blog. For years, my go-to look was always a basic v-neck tee and slim-fit jeans (and maybe a scarf if I was feeling creative). In contrast, Allison always dresses to perfection, no matter the occasion. And what I’ve always admired about her style is her ability to effortlessly and confidently combine seemingly conflicting patterns, textures, and designs. So, over the years her confidence rubbed off on me.

About a year ago I questioned why I wasn’t putting more effort into my everyday personal appearance. What Allison helped me realize is that every moment in your life is special, and that part of what helps define these moments is what we wear. When I transport myself to a cherished memory part of what I recall, apart from the awesome people involved, is how I looked and felt in that moment. We are living in a time where every detail of an outfit becomes an extension of who we are, and our style decisions help us tell our story without having to speak. (If you knew Allison, I think you’d agree that this diatribe would make her proud.)

So, everyone, please give a warm welcome to the first non-me person to be featured on my blog: Allison Khanna!

Allison’s #ootd

Continue reading

Plaid Thai [Food & Fashion]

It’s official! I have bought my domain–christinasbestlife.com! The new website name does double duty. It gives a clearer picture of the type of content I am producing, and it’s a great way to promote my personal brand. I am excited to continue publishing quality content about all the fashion, food, and fun that inspires me.

Today is a combo post! I will be sharing information about both fashion and food I enjoyed on September 13.

In summary, Jesse and I enjoyed a simple night out. Plaid was worn, and Thai food was consumed. (Get it? Plaid Thai? I’m so pun-ny!)

“One tall pumpkin spice latte, please.”

Continue reading

#ootd [in love with lace]

This was an important week for me, mainly because I’ve been given the opportunity to display my social media and marketing prowess in a professional setting. I don’t know how much information I can disclose since the details of this job opportunity are still being developed. But let’s just say that I will likely be consuming a lot of milkshakes (of the ice cream variety) in the foreseeable future.

Besides the unwavering support of my mom and husband something else gave me the confidence to succeed in the meetings I had this week–lace! Today’s #ootd post is a double feature, focusing on two lace-inspired looks.

Wednesday: Dressed to Impressed
For my first meeting this week I wore one of my favorite dresses–a feminine and versatile piece I purchased last spring from Girly Girl Boutique. Girly Girl Boutique has become one of my preferred online shopping destinations. I love the youthful, simple, and preppy items they sell.

necklace//h&m (current season)//similar-short silver chain necklace & short gold necklace with roses
dress//girly girl boutique (old)//similar-spring wedding dress
shoes//nine west (old)//similar-Fergalicious mesh platform wedges
***Wedges are my favorite shoe style! They give you the height of a heel without the blister-inducing discomfort.

Continue reading

#ootd [live on the green]

Jesse and Christina at LOTG

All smiles before the torrential rainstorm

Thursday evening Jesse and I attended Live on the Green (LOTG), a free summer concert series hosted by Nashville’s independently owned rock music station, Lightning 100 (WRLT). Nashville musicians and well-known rock and alternative bands perform in front of the historical Metropolitan Courthouse at Public Square Park. The two acre park sits on top of a subterranean parking lot and “acts as an open public meeting space while also capturing and utilizing over 50,000 gallons of rainwater each year” (Greening, Live on the Green). Besides bringing free music to the residents of Nashville, LOTG has specific guidelines for all of its performers and vendors in order to make it a more environmentally conscious event.

This particular evening, All Them Witches, The Features, and Capital Cities performed. We specifically came to see Capital Cities because we’d missed seeing them on several occasions in past year or so. Capital Cities is “our band” as a couple (second to The Damnwells). We’ve shared many silly moments singing and dancing along to the songs from their debut album, A Tidal Wave of Mystery. Since they’re so special to us I decided to purchase VIP tickets to the event. The VIP package were definitely worth it, especially when it began to monsoon toward the end of All Them Witches’ performance. (More on our Live on the Green experience shortly.)
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#ootd [prints-n-patterns]

Several weeks ago a friend of mine hosted a farewell party for a coworker of ours who has since moved to Florida. “What a great opportunity to come up with a fun outfit to share on my blog,” I thought. I don’t often feel inspired to mix prints and patterns mainly because I’ve never been confident enough. I’ve also been hesitant to embrace the crop top. I have a curvy tummy so I assumed that crop tops would just accentuate my middle (and make me super self-conscious). I wound up tackling both of these insecurities in one outfit! Not only that but it took me, maybe, 30 seconds to put my top and bottom together.

shirt//h&m
skirt//h&m (old)
watch//urban outfitters (old)

Continue reading

How to [Recycle Your Closet]

Cat hat

My most recent impulse buy. Do I really need this kid’s cat hat? Probably not so I’m going to give it to my cousin’s daughter.

In my last blog post, #ootd [canadian tuxedo], I touched on the importance of being a mindful consumer, especially in how we “consume” clothing. I work on the merchandise-processing team at H&M, so I get to see all the products before they hit the floor. It’s especially difficult to resist the urge to buy when I process new merchandise; I can own a cute shirt or dress before any of our customers. I’ve succumbed to the temptation numerous times and don’t see myself breaking this habit any time soon. However, I have gotten better at forcing myself to return items because I’ve realized I’d rather have an extra $15 or $20 in my checking account than a new shirt.

Anyway, my last post inspired today’s topic–how to recycle your closet! There are a variety of nearly effortless ways to recycle your wardrobe, from reorganizing your closet to donating to Goodwill. Being an only child, I was very possessive of my “stuff.” As an adult, that’s translated into being very mindful (and still possessive) about my belongings. I try to take good care of everything I buy because it is important to me to maximize the life of my belongings. As a result, I love figuring out new ways to reuse and recycle what I own because it makes me feel like less of a mindless/wasteful consumer.

So, here are just a few ideas of how you can recycle your wardrobe! Continue reading