shop local :: handmade jewelry from exquistry

 jewelry is the perfect way to transform
any outfit–add a necklace, bracelet,
earrings, broach, and/or rings to elevate the look of
your clothing. incorporate a statement necklace
and you instantly change your look.
jewelry is a wonderful way to re-style
items in your closet and express your personality
by adding a unique ‘pop.’
while i own a decent amount of
jewelry, the majority is inexpensive, costume-
like jewelry that i could take or leave.
i have a few sentimental items and several
gifted pieces that i wear daily (including
a necklace passed down from my grandma,
charm bracelets from my mom, and a new
friendship ring from one of my girlfriends).
over the past few years, i have enjoyed finding
local designers that craft quality, handmade
jewelry that i can mix and match with
other pieces in my closet.
disclosure: a special thank you to amisha, owner of exquistry jewelry for
providing me with the beautiful, handmade necklace in today’s post.
i recently met amisha, designer and creator
of exquistry jewelry, online. amisha is
based in seattle, washington, and her sweet and
genuine personality radiate via email 🙂 i hope
to someday meet amisha in person!
amisha is incredibly artistic and was
born into a family of creatives. she learned
to sew at a young age and began making jewelry in 2011.
 amisha feels most inspired by her indian heritage
(she was born in and spent most of her
childhood in india) and vibrant colors.
she strives to combine fashion with color
and art, and i think this is prevalent within all
of her hand-crafted pieces.
 today i am styling exquistry’s peach rose gold
swarovski pendant necklace. this bohemian-inspired
necklace has hand-sewn beads and a light-weight clasp
for ease of wear (i often struggle with getting
clasped necklaces on and off–this clasp is great!).
because of amisha’s passion for color,
i was inspired to pair my necklace with one
of my most colorful dresses. i think the two
work well together!
photos by jenn from hello rigby
dress: j.crew, jacket and heels: thrifted (via value village),
purse: halogen (thrifted via seattle goodwill), bracelet: nordstrom,
necklace: c/o exquistry jewelry (exact here)
happy friday, everyone!
if you’re looking to update your jewelry,
i highly recommend visiting amisha’s website.
she has several other necklaces and bracelets
that i am lusting after.

my best birthday yet

‘time and tide wait for no man,
but time always stands still for a woman
of 30.’ –robert frost
‘i don’t think of it as turning 30.
it’s my 10th anniversary of my 20th birthday.’
‘you can be gorgeous at 30,
charming at 40, and irresistable for the
rest of your life.’ –coco channel
‘after 30, the body has a mind of its own.’
–bette midler
‘when you’re a teenager, all you want
to do is buy beer. but once you hit 30, all you
want to do is get carded.’
–sarah jessica parker as carrie bradshaw
in ‘sex in the city’
today is my 30th birthday!
i celebrated with family and friends
over the weekend, and it could not have
been a better (or more fun) way to say ‘farewell’ to
my 20s. my parents and boyfriend surprised
me with a party (complete with family,
friends, coworkers, balloons, cupcakes, and
wine–lots of wine). we had a wonderful
time, and i had no idea they had been
sneaking around all week while planning this!
unfortunately, my ‘actual’ birthday, as it
falls on a monday, will be spent at work.
but i plan to eat dessert after every meal and
treat myself to a lunch-time shopping adventure.
are you surprised? 😉
^^^ birthdays are the perfect excused to eat
all the ice cream you want, right? this
vegan, jamocha chaga fudge ice cream from
frankie and jo’s is delicious! ^^^
turning 30 is surprisingly bittersweet.
new year, new me!
i am eager to enter this new decade and look
forward to what lies ahead: finishing
my editing certificate, launching a new
website, pursuing blog opportunities, and of course,
dedicating time to friends and family are
a just a few projects and goals in the works.
while my 20s were fun (a time of
exploration–career-wise and personally),
i think my 30s will be different. to say it will be
an exciting, yet peaceful decade may be
ignorant (or perhaps wishful thinking).
i feel old, though i probably shouldn’t
say that; i don’t mean to offend anyone.
as a teenager, i imagined a much
different image of myself at age 30.
perhaps i would be married, have a child
(or children), be well-established in my career,
etc. well my life sure isn’t that, but i am
okay with my current situation, too!
in fact, i feel grateful for where i am both
personally and professionally.
dress: nordstrom, boots: zara,
blazer: anthropologie (thrifted via goodwill),
clutch: nordstrom rack
and now, onto the outfit!
when brainstorming outfits to wear
on my birthday, i knew i wanted to make a
statement. i picked up this dress at nordstrom
(with sequin polka dots) and love how
flirty and feminine it is. it was on major sale
at nordstrom, too! ankle boots, a blush pink
blazer, and velvet clutch complete
the look. a side of ice cream makes for a
cute and seemingly festive accessory.
while i didn’t wear this outfit to my
party over the weekend, the dress is perfect
for a holiday party or celebration.
it can be dressed up or down, and i look
forward to styling it next weekend with my
denim jacket and converse.
i hope you had a wonderful weekend,
and thank you for stopping by! excuse me
while i indulge in another piece of cake!


hello there!

hello again! remember me?
the girl who (in my most recent post)
promised to blog more consistently and
allegedly had a new website in the works?
i am still here!
work, class, babysitting,
and a nasty cold have taken over (thank
goodness it wasn’t the flu–many
of my friends and coworkers were
diagnosed with the flu. i feel so badly
for them, as this bout is seemingly terrible!).
unfortunately, blog posts and social media
have taken a backseat. as i get back in
my rhythm, i am eager to share new
content and eventually, my new website!
jacket envy; it is a real thing.
 i follow numerous fashion bloggers
on social media (both local and non-locals), and i
cannot help but feel envious towards all
the adorable fuzzy jackets. a teddy coat is still
on my wish list, and there are several other
winter styles i am lusting after. one of the trends
i had to partake in this season, however, is the
velvet puffer.
earlier this year, i saw my friend and
fellow blogger, lisa, from story of my dress,
wearing a purple velvet jacket. i was immediately
smitten! i have since seen many other stylish
women wearing puffy velvet jackets with
skirts and denim, or styled over dresses. the
options are seemingly endless.
for such a trendy item (that may or may
not be in style next season), i didn’t want to
spend a fortune. instead, i patiently waited for
cold weather pieces to go on sale. i found this navy
 velvet puffer online at nordstrom rack for less
than $30! the dark color is versatile, and the
coat is incredibly soft and warm.
whether paired with a graphic t-shirt or
more feminine top or blouse, this jacket will
be on major repeat in the coming weeks.
jeans: american eagle, t-shirt: old navy,
 shoes: vince (thrifted via seattle goodwill),
jacket: nordstrom rack (similar here and here;
velvet puffer vest version here), fringe purse: h&m,
rings: forever 21
do you have a velvet puffer in your closet?
what other winter styles are you eager
to try? my online shopping cart (aka wish list)
is ever-growing!


sweater weather

sweater weather: my favorite kind of
weather! who doesn’t enjoy soft, thick,
and oversized sweaters? they’re perfect for
any occasion, whether layered over a flannel
and leggings, or stylishly paired with a
dress or blouse at the office.
i have an immense love obsession for
sweaters; ‘you do not need another
grey sweater, megan.’ words that are uttered
far too often. in my opinion, one can
never own too many grey (or colorful) sweaters 😉
disclosure: a special thank you to boho chic boutique for graciously providing me the
sweater worn in today’s post. as per usual, all opinions are my own!
sophisticated turtlenecks; cardigans;
fuzzy pullovers; i love them all.
when it comes to sweaters, i have learned
brand (and/or quality of material) is of great
importance. thus, my love for bargain hunting does
not always apply in the sweater department.
this doesn’t mean that all my sweaters are cashmere or
purchased for $100+. no, no. instead, i try
to find quality pieces at local boutiques,
department stores, or on consignment.
additionally, when sweater shopping,
i look for two things: is the garment dry-clean 
only? what is the garment made of?
fibers extracted from plants and animals
and made from cotton, wool, linen, or
silk are going to be of better quality (and
subsequently longer-lasting) than synthetics and
other man-made materials, such as
acrylic, spandex, and polyester. thus, prior
to hitting the cash register, check
the inner tag of your sweater or garment.
quality over quantity!
this is something i, personally, need to adhere
to. i cannot tell you how many times i’ve
purchased an inexpensive sweater, only to wear it
a few times and have it stretch out, pill, and/or
look crummy. this is discouraging and
ultimately a waste of money. the best
way to judge the quality of a sweater is
to touch it. try it on. how does it feel? what
is the density? if it is a knit sweater, upon
stretching, does it return to its original shape?
inspect the seems holding the sweater
together, too!
blouse: loft, sweater: c/o boho chic boutique,
jeans: loft, flats: franco sarto (thrifted via seattle goodwill),
purse: thrifted via seattle goodwill, rings: target
a few weeks ago, i discovered a new
local boutique on instagram (@bohochicboutique2017).
they offer a variety of blouses, sweaters, pants,
and bralettes that are of great quality and at an
even better price point. i feel fortunate for the
opportunity to collaborate with and support
them here on my blog. the sweater i am wearing
today has been on major repeat as of late. it’s incredibly soft
and has maintained its shape (despite many
wearings)—no pilling here, either!
are you familiar with boho chic boutique?
you can shop my sweater on instagram.
cheers to supporting local, small businesses!

new year; new goals!

happy 2018, everyone!
in past years, i have greatly enjoyed
making (seemingly lavish) NYE plans, dressing
up, and ringing in the new year in high style.
this year, however, an oversized sweatshirt,
netflix, and gluten free pizza sounded far
more appealing. perhaps this is due to my
age? or a busy holiday season?
regardless, i skipped the fuss and kindly said,
‘no, thank you,’ to a few holiday party
invites. while i didn’t indulge in pizza,
i was seated on my couch at 12:00am and
could not have been happier!
how did you spend your NYE? i shall
live vicariously through you.

2017 was a busy, yet productive year:

i experienced a change (or two) in positions
at work, moved north of the city, visited
lake chelan and las vegas, enrolled in a certificate
program at the university of washington,
and spent a great deal of time with family and friends.
i also enjoyed sharing outfits, style tips,
and my daily adventures with you (here!).
in 2018, i look forward to continued
career development, completing
the aforementioned certificate program, pursuing
a physically and emotionally healthy lifestyle,
and, of course, devoting a large chunk of my free
time to creating new blog content. in fact, this blog is
currently ‘under construction’ (re a new domain
and overall design). i am eager to share the

details very soon!

additionally, i hope to continue

experimenting with new (and old) fashion
trends; 70s inspired fashion, i am looking at you!
a coworker and dear friend of mine
has sworn off purchasing new items in 2018.
i find this is an admirable endeavor, though
i am not sure i possess enough self-discipline.
however, i will continue to purchase
clothing, shoes, and accessories second-hand,
as i have done in the past.
these boots were a thrifted find, and
i have been wearing them on repeat!
top and skirt: zara, purse: forever 21,
booties: paul green (thrifted via seattle goodwill),
earrings: something silver
cheers to a new year!
do you typically set new goals or
outline new year’s resolutions? i prefer goal-setting
and purchased a beautiful notebook to document these goals
(and to hold myself accountable).

winter wardrobe staple: the grey knit dress

and just like that, fall has come and gone,
and now, christmas is behind us, too. 2017 seemingly flew
by; did it for you? our weather has taken a dramatic
turn in the pacific northwest (we experienced our first
snowfall this past weekend), and i am eager to find cute (and warm)
ways to dress. confession: i keep an extra-large, plush blanket at
my desk and can often be seen typing away on my
computer while wrapped in said blanket. this girl is
always cold.
 ^^^ karya and i had way too much fun playing
with and perfecting these giant bell sleeves! ^^^
during the work week, i crave comfort
and ease when it comes to getting dressed.
however, i also need (and want) to look
professional. a dress offers a simple solution:
one piece (plus shoes and accessories), and
you are on your way.
a knit dress, such as this dress from
the who what wear collection at target,
is a budget-friendly, trendy piece. the charcoal
grey makes it incredibly versatile, too. pair it
with turquoise, purple, emerald, or just about
any other jewel tone for a colorful ‘pop!’
i greatly enjoy anything and everything with
bell sleeves, and i hope this trend sticks around
come spring. speaking spring, too, i decided
to add color (and a pretty print) to this otherwise
neutral look with a vintage-inspired scarf.
not a fan of wearing scarves? instead, tie the scarf
in your hair or onto the strap of your handbag.
dress: who what wear (via target, exact here),
purse: gifted, boots: paul green (thrifted via goodwill),
scarf: target, ring: lucky brand
a knit dress is wardrobe staple for everyone
this winter. wear it with tights, leggings,
flats, boots, etc. the options are seemingly
endless. it looks stylish and professional, but doesn’t
feel restrictive like other dresses often do.
i am lusting after thisthis, and this dress.
(my exact dress is still available at target and
retails for less than $40).
what are some of your winter staples?
in addition to the knit dress, i cannot get
enough of my leather jacket and faux fur vests!


athliesure workout wear for the holidays

christmas is four days away!
only four days? how did it arrive so quickly?
i have to admit, this week, i am scrambling to
finish last minute shopping, errands, and gift
wrapping. are you caught up? if so,
please tell a girl your secret.
disclosure: brooks running graciously provided me the top, jacket, shoes, gloves, and headband
photographed in this post. as per usual, all opinions are my own! and thank you again,
whether you’re heading to the gym,
out to coffee with girlfriends, or catching up on
last minute holiday errands (like visiting the
christmas-tree farm), brooks running has you covered.
from your jacket to your sports bra and shoes,
brooks offers high quality, yet reasonably priced
athletic wear for men and women. they’re
local to washington, too!
i have lived in my revel road running shoes
for the past several months. they’re comfortable,
supportive, and stylish! i love the chic,
black and white fabric; they seemingly match
all of my workout wear. priced at $100,
the revel show is perfect for my fellow runners
(and fashionistas) on a budget.
don’t let cold weather interfere with your
active lifestyle! here in the pacific northwest,
layers are your friend. a down vest, headband,
and tech-friendly gloves are the perfect accompaniments
to any workout. psa: my greenlight gloves have a
small magnet at the base of the wrist, allowing
me to attach them to one another after a workout
(no more wondering, ‘where on earth did the
other glove go?’).
photos by jenn from hello rigby
jacket: canopy jacket c/o brooks (exact here),
tights: zella, t-shirt: c/o brooks,
shoes: revel running shoe c/o brooks (exact here),
headband: c/o brooks (exact here),
gloves: c/o brooks (exact here),
purse: borrowed from my mom
i often find myself missing workouts
during the holiday season. a hectic calendar,
chilly weather, and frequent invitations to
happy hours and holiday parties make the gym
a lackluster priority. however, keeping active
(even if it means walking laps around the mall
while window shopping) is important to my physical
and emotional health and wellness.
versatile clothing, such as my canopy jacket
and workout tights, allow me to easily
transition from one activity to the next. i
can no longer blame a ‘lack of workout gear’ on
missed gym dates. in 2018, i am determined to keep up
with my active lifestyle.
how do you stay motivated and healthy
during the holiday season? let me know in
the comments, and happy holidays!


holiday party ready (on a budget)

holiday party season has arrived.
every invite is seemingly accompanied
by an ever-growing price tag and shopping list.
whether you’re attending a black-tie dinner or ugly
sweater gathering, purchasing a different
outfit for each event is expensive.
if you’re like me, wearing the same blouse
or dress to multiple parties sounds less than
ideal. how can you dress (and shop)
during the holiday season while adhering
to your budget?
i have put together a few simple tips!
disclosure: a special thank you to value village for graciously providing
me with the gift certificate used to purchase items featured in this post. as per usual,
all opinions are my own!
mix and match!
your statement clutch or faux fur vest
can be paired with a variety of skirt,
pant, or dress options. a black vest, for example,
can be worn with a sweater and pants (as i did
in today’s post), or over your favorite
long-sleeved dress.
thrift, thrift, thrift!
shopping at department stores
and local boutiques is greatly enjoyable,
but often comes at a cost (a high cost, too).
thrifting is a wonderful and budget-friendly
alternative. grab your girlfriends and hit
your local value village.
wear a non-traditional piece!
your black ruffle shorts, metallic skirt,
or office pants? not items that necessarily
denote ‘holiday party.’ however,
these non-traditional pieces can be styled
in a way that looks and feels festive.
pair longer, ruffle (or printed) shorts with
a dressy blouse, or wear opaque tights
and a sweater with your metallic skirt.
you can also easily dress up (and make festive)
your work essentials, such as black
pants. add heels, a scarf or necktie, and
faux fur vest to instantly make your
pants look glam.
take advantage of holiday sales
(and don’t be afraid to scour the clearance rack)!
if thrift shopping is not your favorite
(don’t be afraid to try!), check the sale rack at
your favorite stores. seasonal tops, dresses, and shoes
are typically on sale, and many
retailers will continue to mark down prices.
now may be the perfect time to purchase
classic, staple items (such as black
heels or a faux leather jacket) at a reduced cost.
my outfit breakdown:
sweater (topshop thrifted) — $10
faux fur vest (old, macy’s) — $40
pants (zara) — $29
ring (thrifted) — $2
heels (karen kane thrifted) — $8
purse (target thrifted) — $6
total — $113 (the average dress costs
between $100-300 at most department stores)
is your calendar also filling up with
parties and other holiday-related events?
i love this time of year and enjoy
keeping busy. it’s time to put together more
festive outfits #merrythriftmas


flashback: fall favorites

is anyone else trying to figure
out where 2017 went? how is it already
december? the holidays are upon us, and i feel
like we just celebrated the fourth of july!
i am ready to embrace december (and celebrate
the end of a great year) with all things festive:
a trip to westlake center, visiting snowflake lane,
sipping a peppermint mocha, decorating
my apartment, listening to christmas music, etc. etc.
and with the holidays fast approaching,
i realized i am a bit behind with posts on this
little blog #thestruggleisreal
i also have yet to begin christmas shopping,
but we will save that for a later post.
i wore this outfit a few months back,
before it was too chilly to wear a skirt sans tights.
however, i think tights and a cozy cream
jacket could easily be added to make this
look more ‘weather-appropriate.’
my denim skirt was a spontaneous purchase
earlier this fall, and i have already worn
it countless times! it is a classic piece,
and the medium wash seemingly matches
all of my blouses and sweaters.
are you ready for the holidays?
we decorated our tree last weekend, and
my company’s christmas party is next weekend.
i cannot wait to celebrate. i am also
looking forward to visiting family,
driving around the city to see christmas lights,
and of course, enjoying far too many delicious
christmas goodies!
^^^ these leopard-print booties are comfortable
and fun to style! ^^^
skirt: flirt boutique (located in pullman, wa),
sweater: urban outfitters (exact here), clutch: forever 21,
booties: thrifted via buffalo exchange,
bracelets and ring: targethappy monday, everyone!
i hope you have a wonderful week 🙂

and this year, i am especially thankful

the holiday season is in full swing!
it feels like there is a gathering, brunch, or
commitment of some sort every weekend from
now through the new year (just in case
you missed it, i recently shared a few ways in
which i practice self-care during the busy holiday
season on my blog here).
 don’t get me wrong, i enjoy keeping busy.
during this time, however, i find it particularly
important to take a step back and reflect on the many
blessings in my life: my family, friends,
a loving boyfriend, a job that keeps me
busy, yet challenges me, and most recently,
the opportunity to return to school (to name a few).
i must admit, clothes, shoes, and
jewelry also hold a special place in my heart
(as does a well-organized closet), but i digress.
i am grateful for cozy sweaters, pumpkin spice
creamer (the dairy-free version), rain-free fall days
(the colors on the trees in seattle during this time are
out of this world), and so much more!
of course, blogging also makes me
very happy, and for that, i am thankful.
i have been creating content for diary of this girl
for six years. this little blog has come
a long way, and i am eager to continue writing,
creating new outfits and style tips, and of
course, sharing my everyday happenings with you.
thank you for coming back!
we were fortunate to spend the thanksgiving
holiday with my aunt and uncle, cousins,
grandma, and our adorable pups. i ate far
too much stuffing and chocolate pie, but that’s okay.
how did you celebrate? is anyone else
craving more stuffing and green bean casserole?
photos by brittany from coco & blush
dress: madewell (via crossroads),
sweater, bag, and boots: borrowed from coco & blush,
ring: lucky brand
while i didn’t wear this outfit for
thanksgiving dinner, i think it would have been a
great option. pair it with a sweater or
cozy jacket! i had every intention of dressing up,
but instead opted for jeans and a loose-fitting blouse
(a girl’s gotta have room for dessert).
as the weather continues to cool off, however,
i plan to style this plaid dress with dark
tights or layer a turtleneck underneath;
the options are seemingly endless!
i hope you had a wonderful thanksgiving.
and again, i am thankful for you!


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