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Black Friday Sales


Happy Black Friday! I'm definitely a little late with my sale roundup this year. But better late than never, right? I'm just now getting around to gift shopping, so here's a few of the best sales I've seen going on this weekend!

Addison Bay- 30% off sitewide
Athleta- 30% off and $20 off bottoms
Barrington Gifts- up to 25% off
Duffield Lane- up to 50% off
Gigi New York- save up to $180
J. Crew- 50% off and an extra 10% off
J. Crew Factory- 50-70% off and $10 off every $50 spent
Jack Rogers- 40% off sitewide
Julie Vos- extra 15% off sale
Kate Spade- up to 50% off
Kendra Scott- 40% off
Lake Pajamas- 25% off
Levi's- 40% off
Lilly Pulitzer- $30 off every $100 spent
Lisi Lerch- up to 60% off
Neely & Chloe- up to 30% off
Mark & Graham- up to 70% off and extra 30% off clearance
Madewell- 50% off
Nordstrom- up to 60% off
Printfresh- 25% off
Tory Burch- up to 60% off
Tuckernuck- up to 30% off
Sarah Flint- $100 off 2+ pairs, $225 off 3+ pairs, and $400 4+ pairs
Sam Edelman- 35% off

Happy shopping!

Day Trips From The Atlanta Metro


Since moving to the Atlanta suburbs, TJ and I have been finding lots of fun day trips to fill some of our weekends! So I thought I would share some of our favorite places and what we did there. Spoiler alert: it's a big mix of some outdoor activity and finding more antique stores.

Cities and Towns:
Athens, GA
We loved spending the day in Athens. We visited the Georgia Museum of Art on the University of Georgia campus. And The State Botanical Gardens of Georgia, which features a Porcelain and Decorative Arts Museum! The gardens were beautiful to see in June. Then we ended the day by visiting Creature Comforts Brewery.

Blue Ridge, GA
Growing up in NC, I couldn't help but think that Blue Ridge's downtown area reminded me a lot of Blocking Rock, NC. There were a few antique stores in the area and quite a few options for hikes.

Chattanooga, TN
We have made two trips to Chattanooga over the summer, and we would go back again! On the first trip we went to Rock City, which has an overlook that is said you can see into the borders of 7 states. Then we went to Chattanooga Choo Choo, the restored train station and had a beer in an old train car. Plus some antique stops at Southside Antiques and Chattanooga Mercantile. We arrived close to closing time, but could have spent hours in Chattanooga Mercantile. On our second trip, we went to the Tennessee Aquarium, Cherry St Brewing, and dinner at Mayan Kitchen downtown.

Dahlonega, GA
This town is the closest to the Atlanta area and we have passed through it twice now. There are several antique stores, plenty of restaurants, and some unique shops. It's a great stopping point as you're going further north to towns like Helen and Hiawassee.

Helen, GA (pictured above)
I had heard a little bit about this town as one of the places that make you feel like you're in Europe. We visited once in the spring and again recently for Oktoberfest. This Bavarian town is very touristy, but a lot of fun! I especially enjoyed Windmill Dutch Imports, a store full of blue and white pottery direct from Holland. There are also some other import stores with products from Germany and Russia. On our first trip we spent some time in Nachoochee Village Antique Mall and Wonderland Antiques & Curiosities outside of the main town center. We also enjoyed coffee with a view on the way in at Jumpingoat Coffee Roasters and lunch from Nachoochee Village Tavern & Pizzeria. Plus a stop on the way back for a beer from Tantrum Brewing in Cleveland, GA. On our second trip, we celebrated Oktoberfest with a beer from International Cafe, which has a covered patio over the river. We also had dinner at Mueller's Fried Cheese!

Hiawassee, GA
We stopped in this town after seeing Bell Mountain, unfortunately as things were mostly closing down for the day. But we got some great barbecue from Hawg Wild BBQ & Catfish House. They have a beautiful view of Bell Creek (which looks more like a lake at that point) from the restaurant. And we will try to make it back sometime soon to see more of what the town has to offer!


Hikes and Waterfalls:
Brasstown Bald
A short but very steep hike, located in between Helen and Hiawasee. There is a whole observation deck at the top with a great view.

Bell Mountain (pictured above)
The road to get up to Bell Mountain is the toughest part. Let's just say we would not do it again with a 2 wheel drive sedan...but once you get to the parking lot, it's just a short walk for panoramic views of mountains and Bell Creek. It's a short drive from the town of Hiawassee for restaurants, shopping, and more.

Dukes Creek Falls
About a 10 minute drive from the town of Helen, this was about a mile hike each way to some beautiful waterfalls.

Falls Branch Falls
This waterfall is near Blue Ridge GA, a fairly short hike and some great views!

We also want to go to Toccoa Falls, in Toccoa, GA. But I unfortunately was sick the weekend we had planned to go. So hopefully we will get another chance to see them sometime soon!


Other Activities:
Callaway Gardens (pictured above)
This is a golf resort with bike trails, a butterfly house, a lake beach, and a few food options. We loved spending a day on the bike trails, there were 10 miles of them! Plus a beautiful chapel that you can stop in to, and lots of family activities. We also walked around the small downtown area of Pine Mountain, GA on the way out and enjoyed a few of the antique stores.

Strawberry Picking
We picked some strawberries at LCCL Strawberry Farm in Rome, GA back in the spring. Don't leave without also getting some of their fresh strawberry ice cream! 

Apple Picking
Last year, we picked some apples at B.J. Reece Orchard in Elijay, GA. It was likely the closest option to go from Atlanta or we picked the most popular day, because it was very crowded. But we got some great apples, and if you have kids, they have lots of family activities as well. There are also several antique stores nearby!


Thanks for reading!

Lilly Pulitzer Sunshine Sale Picks


I've always said fall is never my favorite season to come around. But I'm always distracted for a few days every year when the Lilly Pulitzer Sunshine Sale comes around! Previously known as The Endless Summer/New Year Cheer and After Party Sales, Lilly Pulitzer typically only holds sales twice each year. In September or late August as summer is coming to a close, and in January as the new year is starting. The September version went live this morning and will go through Wednesday the 14th! So as usual, I thought I would share my picks from the sale. But keep an eye on the site, as they will be adding more styles to the sale!



Thanks for reading!

Labor Day Sales


Can you believe it's already almost Labor Day?! I feel like this summer has just flown by, and thanks to social media going full fall mode lately, I have to remind myself it is still 90 degrees out. Which is the ideal time to scoop up some end of summer sale styles! So I'm rounding up a few of my favorites, including my own vintage shop The Blue Swan. Explore markdowns on some of my curated vintage home decor before prices go back up on Tuesday 9/6. Plus some more of the best sales going on below!


Anthropologie- extra 50% off all sale items
Asos- 20% off everything
Bandier- 20% off orders $150+, 25% off orders $250+, 30% off orders $350+
Draper James- extra 30% off sale styles
H&M- 20% off and free shipping orders over $60
Girlfriend Collective- 25% off sitewide and up to 60% off sale styles
J. Crew- 30% off and extra 50% off sale styles
J. Crew Factory- 50% off and extra 60% off clearance
Jack Rogers- 30% off and up to 70% off sale styles
Kate Spade- extra 30% off sale styles
Levi's- up to 40% off sitewide
Lisi Lerch- 30% off jewelry and select bags
Madewell- 30% off fall faves and extra 40% off sale styles
Mark & Graham- up to 70% off
Nordstrom- up to 60% off
Nordstrom Rack- extra 40% off clearance
Rifle Paper Co.- Extra 25% off markdowns
Sail To Sable- up to 80% off
Tory Burch- up to 60% off


Thanks for reading!

Equipment I Have Bought For My New Camera


I have mentioned in a previous post, I bought the Canon M50 Mark II camera back in January, which is their entry-level mirrorless SLR. This was an upgrade to an old EOS Rebel I have had since 2009. It unfortunately stopped working towards the end of 2019, but I didn't look to repair it, both because I was working with the amazing Deeana Kourtney Photography (miss her so much!) when I was living in Charlotte for blog photos. And for everything else, iPhone camera quality has come pretty far since the days were I was using most using that first camera. Fun fact, I'm pretty sure the phone I was using at the time I got my first camera was bright orange with a slide-out keyboard!


I didn't have many lenses with the first camera: a 55-250mm telephoto lens, and a fixed 50mm (which you might have heard as the "nifty fifty") lens. But I would now need an adapter to use either of those lenses on the new camera with the EF-M mirrorless system. So after playing around with the kit lens for awhile, I started to look for a mirrorless equivalent of the 50mm fixed lens. One of the things I love about the mirrorless camera is it so much smaller and lighter than my old one. It fits in many of my bags (even a fanny pack!) with the kit lens. So I was hoping for something a little more versatile, but was also small.


 After a broad search of "best lenses for Canon M50 Mark II" I found a few recommendations for the Neewer fixed 35mm lens. I read a lot of reviews stating how great it performed for just $80 (for reference: most Canon lenses are about $250 minimum). Even though I was a little hesitant that the lens was manual focus only and I had not used a third-party lens before, I thought I would give it a try.  I unfortunately rarely strayed from autofocus over the years of using my other camera, so I thought now was the time to learn manual. I first tested the lens out after some rain, and I was very impressed with it!


All I have bought otherwise for this specific camera is this carrying sleeve. I didn't want a full camera bag, but this keeps it safe within a tote bag or handbag. I also have had the same tripod for about as long as my first camera. It looks like the exact one is no longer made, but this one looks like a pretty similar option.

Thanks for reading!

First Anniversary Trip To Florida

TJ and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary in Florida, and I'm excited to share all about it! We spent our honeymoon in the Florida Keys (more on that here). So we thought it would be fun to see another part of Florida to celebrate a year later.

We broke up the trip down with some antique store stops, and drove 6 of the 8 hours the first day.  We enjoyed visiting Planter's Walk Antique Mall in Locust Grove, GA, Payne Mill Village Antiques in Macon, GA, and Bula's Antiques in Tifton, GA. I picked up some great finds, but there were even more stops I wish we had some time for that day.

Tampa

We made it in to Tampa for our first day, and started by visiting Hyde Park Village. I have seen the area on social media for years, so it was fun to see it for ourselves. We got burgers for lunch from Goody Goody, which has been around for almost 100 years! Followed by coffee from Buddy Brew. There was a lot more to see in the area, but we headed to our hotel to check in. This was our splurge hotel of the trip, we stayed at the Current Autograph Collection. It's a beautiful hotel with a great infinity pool on the bay and a rooftop bar. We spent some time in the pool before heading to dinner at The C House. Which specializes in charcuterie, cheesecake, and champagne. We only ended up trying one of the "c"s which was a chocolate and salted caramel cheesecake, which did not disappoint! Then we ended the night with a drink at the hotel's rooftop bar.

Sarasota

Our next stop was about an hour and a half away in Sarasota. I was most excited to see the Ringling Museum. It was possibly the most beautiful place I have seen in the United States. We first headed to Ca D'Azan, which was the house of the Ringling family. We did not go inside the house, but there was more than enough beauty on the outside overlooking the water. I was blown away with every detail, and have more photos of it on Instagram. On to the actual museum, which was just as incredible. The pink walled courtyard was decorated with beautiful tiles and extravagant doorways. The art inside was just as stunning, with a variety of art styles to see. Oh and it's free to visit on Mondays!

We spent a few hours at the museum and then went to Lido Key Beach. We unfortunately were rained out fairly quickly, but we enjoyed the clear water and white sand while we could. Then we headed to Longboat Key for dinner at Whitney's. Which we loved, especially their key lime pie (in case you missed last year's post about our love for key lime pie). Then we went to the beach access across the street just in time to catch the most beautiful sunset. We even got to see a sea turtle rescue letting a few baby sea turtles into the water. Then we ended the night with some margaritas from Wicked Cantina.
 

Venice

The next morning we drove about 30 minutes south to Venice, FL. TJ's favorite activity at any beach is to look for fossilized shark teeth. Venice, FL is known as the "Shark Tooth Capital of the World" and he had visited before. So he was very excited to show me their beautiful beaches full of shark teeth to be found. We visited Caspersen Beach (pictured above), Manasota Key Beach, and Stump's Pass Beach. What I really liked about these beaches is that most of them still had rows of trees along the beach. Even at a public beach access, if you went past the area of chairs and umbrellas (which was fairly small compared to many beaches), it felt like you were on a private beach. We brought picnic lunches to the beach each day and TJ left with over 200 shark teeth. Plus they have a cute downtown full of shops and restaurants. We enjoyed dinner at Cassariano's and ice cream from Venice Avenue creamery. Although if you plan on visiting, keep in mind that many things in this area closes on the early end. We had some trouble finding a dinner spot after 8pm our first night.

Back through Sarasota

We headed back up to Sarasota to see more of their beaches. We wanted to see Siesta Beach, but thought it was going to be fully packed, so we started at the nearby Turtle Beach for the first part of the day. Turtle Beach did not have the white sand of Siesta Beach, but had similar water and was much less crowded. We headed over to Siesta Beach around 3:30 and it was still packed, but we were at least able to get a spot. It was a beautiful beach, but from growing up going to the Carolina beaches, makes Myrtle Beach look tame. But we spent the most time swimming in the water at this beach, it was so clear and calm and we could have spent all day in there.

We spent our last night getting dinner in downtown Sarasota at Boca. I wish we had more time to see their downtown, but I enjoyed what we were able to see of it. We quickly left dinner to catch a sunset beach walk at Lido Key Beach. Then walked around St. Armand's Circle after dark. I would love to go back there during the day sometime to at least see their Lilly Pulitzer store. We stopped into Gelato-go but ended up getting some key lime tarts. They were similar to a lemon meringue tart and were delicious! Then the next morning, we took one last beach walk on South Lido Key before heading out in the morning. This beach was full of beautiful shells and such a nice note to end the trip on.

Thanks for reading!

First Wedding Anniversary


We are completely shocked it has been a whole year since our wedding day! It has truly been the best first year, and I'm so incredibly thankful to have TJ by my side every single day. I re-wore my shoes and earrings from the big day to celebrate, which was so much fun. Plus, we were just featured on my wedding dress designer, Eddy K's blog! Here's to many more years, and a quick look back at the best day ever!








Thanks for reading!

Hydrangea Season






Vase available via The Blue Swan


Don't you just love hydrangea season? I've been patiently checking on our hydrangea bushes every day the last few weeks. They're reaching a point where they are full of beautiful blooms and I cannot stop taking photos of them. Plus bringing a few inside to arrange in a vase. Last year, we still had some blooms through the end of September, and I hope this year is no different. I think these bushes have been around for quite awhile from a previous homeowner, and I'm so glad we get to enjoy them.  Yesterday, I cut a few blooms for some photos of new listings in my vintage shop. I might have gotten a little carried away with the photos, and even went back out during golden hour. 
But on to the outfit, I have been loving the smocked dresses I have been seeing everywhere lately. But I have seen so many in very light colors and long lengths, neither of which would be flattering on me. Or in gingham, and the last thing I need is another gingham dress. So I was very excited to have found this one with some bolder colors in the print, and although you can't tell from these photos, is a great length on me. I also did an Instagram Reel sharing a few ways to style it. I love the extra ruffle on the shoulders, and it also comes in solid white and violet.



Thanks for reading!

Memorial Day Sales


Happy Memorial Day weekend! It's been quite a while since I've done a sale roundup (anyone remember when I used to do them every Friday?!). So here are a few favorites sales for clothing, accessories, and home decor going on this weekend.

Aerie- 30-60% off
Anthropologie- extra 40% off sale items
Athleta- 20% off
Banana Republic- 30% off full price styles
Boden- 25% off
Draper James- extra 30% off markdowns
J. Crew- 30% off and extra 60% off sale styles
J. Crew Factory- 40-70% off and extra 60% off clearance
Jack Rogers- 30% off
Joss & Main- 20% off
Kate Spade New York- up to 40% off
Lisi Lerch- 30% off all jewelry and select bags
Love Shack Fancy- up to 75% off select styles
Madewell- 25% off everything and extra 30% off sale
Mark & Graham- up to 70% off
Nordstrom Rack- extra 25% off sale
Old Navy- styles from $6 and up to 60% off
Pottery Barn-  up to 70% off
Printfresh- extra 20% off sale styles
Trina Turk- extra 30% off markdowns

Thanks for reading!

Recent Activewear Favorites

As much as I love dressing up, I'm also pretty practical in my clothing purchases. So when most of my time outside of working from home involves outdoor activities like hiking and (soon will be) biking, I'm buying more activewear than regular clothes. TJ and I have been taking day trips almost every weekend lately, and we usually center them around: something outdoors, exploring a new area, and stopping into antique stores. So something like an exercise dress or a tennis skirt has been ideal for these trips. I built up quite the collection of activewear when I was frequenting workout classes in Charlotte. So it has been fun to add some different types of pieces like dresses and skirts!

 I posted awhile ago about Exercise Dresses and what I was looking for in one. I finally found one that was in a bright color, with built in shorts, at a decent price. I found this bright pink one and have been loving it. This dress is so comfortable, and has been great for hiking and to wear while traveling. I've actually liked the dress so much I bought it in a second color! It didn't hurt that I got a $20 off code with the first purchase...but I think we all knew that I was going to want the navy one too.

I have also been loving that tennis skirts have joined the dresses in being worn for other activities lately. I got this one from Aerie and wore it hiking last weekend. I love that the sides are shorter, which can make your legs look longer. It reminded me of some of the skirts I loved to wear in rehearsal back when I was in ballet. Although a different style, I've had my eye on this gingham one for awhile too.

And I sort of mentioned in the beginning of the post, TJ and I have also recently ordered bikes. So I'm sure there will be more to come in this category. I also plan to share a big roundup of our weekend day trips at some point!

Some more favorites: