Queen of Hearts


It all started when a girlfriend tried on this heart print button down at a boutique in the Mission. From then on, I’ve been drawn to heart print items and am noticing that it’s a micro trend for fall. I’ve rounded up a few of my favorite items adorned with hearts, from the cutest Comme des Garçons sneakers to a tee and sweatshirt from my new favorite line, THE GREAT (which is the ready-to-wear line by Emily Current and Meritt Elliott of Current/Elliott).

Clockwise from top left:

My All-Time Favorite Work Bag


When it was time to find a new work bag I realized I just wanted to replace my favorite one, which had started to show some wear and tear after nearly three years. My work bag of choice: The Cuyana Classic Leather Tote in Stone.

Why I love it: The pebbled leather feels luxurious but is also more durable (in my opinion) than smooth leather, and the Stone color goes with everything. Plus, you can get it monogrammed for $10!

I think next I may need to snag the laptop sleeve and the leather tassel keychain. Cuyana has a gorgeous website but their showroom in downtown San Francisco is so fun to visit.

The Imperfect Apartment Tour


We moved into our third floor apartment, in a 1920s Edwardian in an up-and-coming neighborhood called Nopa (North of the Panhandle), when we moved to San Francisco a little over three years ago … and haven’t done much to it since. As I mentioned in this post, I had been itching to make some apartment updates and I’m happy to say that save for a few things stuck in the mail, our apartment finally feels DONE. 

I was initially hesitant to share photos not because I don’t love how it turned out, but because I see so many glossy, perfect home tours online and this isn’t that. Our apartment is tiny and I shot these photos with an iPhone. BUT we re-did the apartment for under $2,000 and I do love it, so perfect apartment tour or not, here it is! I think the blogging world could use a dose of reality, how about you?
Dining Room
We replaced another IKEA purchase, our tall bar table, with another IKEA dining set! After spending an entire day strolling West Elm and the usual suspects, and ended up loving the Fanbyn bar table and chairs. The table is very trendy but because of the low price tag I’m okay with it. Plus, we have two fold up stools so we can actually seat six for dinner! With the exception of our kitchen and bathroom, our entire apartment is carpeted. I dream of wood floors, but for now decided to buy a bright rug to break up the space and make the dining area more distinct. 

Living Room
We got rid of our hand-me-down Pottery Barn TV stand and IKEA Billy bookcase to make room for this mid-century modern TV stand. It was tricky to pair down our book collection and agree on which knick knacks to showcase (that deserves a whole other post), but I’m happy with how it turned out. 

Sadly, framing this Rebecca Atwood wallpaper didn’t work out. I ordered this Ferns print from Jenny’s Print Shop and sent the high-res rile to Framebridge to be matted and framed. The print was just $15 and the printing, matting, framing and shipping was just under $150. I can’t wait to see how it turns out. 

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Bar Cart (pictured after the jump)
Rug: Sold out but similar here and here 
Fern Print (not pictured)

On Mindfulness


Mindfulness. Meditation. These words have become ubiquitous with the wellness movement and I'm cringing even typing them (along with "wellness movement"). But, once I read the actual definition of mindfulness, I couldn’t ignore how rarely I focused on the present moment. 

Mindfulness: “A mental state achieved by focusing one's awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one's feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique.” 

As a planner and a worrier, I’m always thinking about how to plan for what’s next - whether it’s what to cook for dinner or how to prep for my next meeting. There are benefits to this, like always remembering my friends’ and family members’ birthdays, for example, and generally feeling prepared at work. And don’t get me started on being a worrier. I can’t even begin to tell you how many times I’ve been up at night thinking about how I could have said something different to a friend, or approached a project differently in hindsight. 

Needless to say, I’m rarely “in the moment,” which is why I’m currently taking a course at UCSF’s Osher Center called Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction. The course introduces you to mindfulness practice in the form of sitting meditation, body awareness and mindful movement. So far so good (although squeezing in the daily meditation has been a struggle) but I will report back at the end. 

The End of Summer


Can you feel it? Summer is almost over. Even though I’m no longer in school, and even though we actually get our most summery weather in San Francisco in September and October, Labor Day always signals the arrival of fall. 

This year it really feels like “back to school” time since I start my new job the week of September 11. That means I have over a week to really make the most of true summer (no job!). I’m off to a good start, with a full reading list below after catching up on some of my favorite corners of the Internet, and a trip to see friends in Napa this weekend.

I enjoyed reading about Christina’s Buddhist pilgrimage (and share a lot of the same takeaways after our trip to Japan.

I’ve been a fan of Raluca and What Would Gwyneth Do for years, and loved diving into her new site, aptly named What Would Raluca Do, this week.

I also caught up on another site I love, Atelier Doré, this week and particularly enjoyed reading founder Garance’s summer recap. 

And in case you missed it, Garance wrote a heartbreakingly beautiful essay on her struggle with infertility on Lenny Letter.

I just ordered The Bright Hour, A Memoir of Living and Dying by Nina Riggs and can’t wait to read it. Any other summer read suggestions during my time off?

I think I’m late to the part in re-discovering Jamie Beck’s blog, but her photos from her year in Provence are so dreamy (especially her self portraits).

Ummm did you hear the new iPhone may not have a home button? First no earphone jack and now this?

And lastly, a few fun Labor Day sale items currently on scattered online shopping carts:

I firmly believe that you CAN wear white after Labor Day, so all the more reason to scoop up this white dress from English Factory.

These Levi’s are an updated version of the classic 501 and I’m loving the patchwork detail.

Mules are a footwear trend that I hope is hear to stay. This Vince pair comes in black and tan.

I can’t get enough of white tees, and this ruffled one from The Great is so good.