Holiday Wishlist 2016

We've made it past Halloween everyone, which means the holidays are approaching fast!

It may be a little cliche, but the weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas are my favorite time of year. My birthday is in early December and of course Christmas is at the end of the month, and per the request of many of my relatives (and just for myself!) I start to think about what's on my wishlist for the holidays. I thought it might be nice to share, and I'd love it if you did as well!

Hunter Boots

Michael Kors Audrina Watch

J.Crew Excursion Vest with Corduroy Trim

J.Crew Toothpick Corduroy or Talbot's Corduory

KJP Serena Fairchild Pearl Necklace

Patagonia Fleece Pullover

Gel Nail Polish Light

Canon EOS Rebel T6i

Estee Lauder Modern Muse Le Rouge Gloss Perfume

MacBook Pro 

J.Crew Camp Socks


Falling in Love With Autumn

shirt // necklace // skirt (on sale!) // socks (similar) // boots 

October is already coming to a close, and seeing the leaves finally start to change (it's been a slow fall here!) has gotten me in the mood for autumn. My Frye riding boots have been a staple in my closet, and I love pairing them with warm socks underneath for chilly mornings. I've also found myself wearing lots of rich jewel tones as the weather gets cooler. Today I paired a ruby skirt (aren't the scallops just darling? I'm a firm believer that scallops are a year-round accent, not just for the summer months) with an emerald green and navy Breton shirt. This color combination isn't one that I'd usually think to wear, but I'm surprised by how much I like it. All of this went perfectly with my white pearl earrings - which are, in the words of Jackie O., "always appropriate" - and Kendra Scott pearl necklace. 

What are your fall essentials? Is the weather near you getting colder?


Updates and Week in Review

Hello everyone! I'm back.

I'm so sorry I've been away for so long; junior year has been a big change academically and it's taking some adjusting to get used to balancing varsity sports, academics, and extracurriculars. But I've missed blogging so much, and my goal is to get back to a regular schedule by mid-November. I have several new and exciting things planned, but for now, I thought I'd update you on what's been going on since I last wrote!

My favorite part about heading back to school is getting the chance to see all of my friends almost daily. I love the summer, but my friends and I are usually so busy with vacations, activities, and summer sports that it can be hard to meet up. It's nice to have a guarantee that we'll be able to see each other in the hallways, even if our schedules outside of school are packed.

Last month was Mary's birthday (you've probably seen her on the blog before!), and we celebrated with a movie, dinner, and milkshakes. 

Virginia has some of the prettiest apple orchards outside of New England, and it's a family tradition to visit every fall and pick apples to use in apple pie, homemade applesauce and (my favorite) apple salad. Seeing the mountains and being up in the cold air really makes me feel like fall is finally here!
My goal for the fall and winter season is to improve my accessory collection. My favorite places to pick up new pieces have been J.Crew Factory and Etsy. If you have any suggestions, let me know! Factory has amazing deals on gorgeous statement jewelry, and their stock is always updated with new things. I love Etsy for more personalized things like monogrammed jewelry (an essential!). There's also a huge selection of different shops making adorable and classic jewelry; some of my favorites are Simply Gold Accessories and Penner Pearls.


Preppy School Supplies

I go back to school on Tuesday, and as I head into my junior year I really feel like I've finally figured out exactly what I need in terms of school supplies. I've already bought what I need for the year, and I thought I'd share some of my essentials!

1. // The Perfect Bag - This is my number one priority when looking for school supplies. You'll be using your backpack every day, so it's important to find one that's cute and functional! I adore these packs from Madeline & Co., but I also use and love this one from Eddie Bauer (p.s. - it has a lifetime warranty!).

2. // Notebooks - I like college ruled notebooks because I think they make my handwriting neater, and I always splurge a little on better quality notebooks (and I never buy the ones with paper covers!) because I need them to last all year! My go-to color choices are white and navy.

3. // InkJoy Gel Pens - Good pens are a must for me. I take lots of notes and I color-code all of them, so I need pens that write really smoothly and dry quickly. These InkJoy pens check all the boxes!

4. // Pencils - I love having adorable pencils; it motivates me to take them out and write with them! These pencils from Etsy are so cute, and they mention one of the preppiest girls on television - Blair Waldorf. What more could you want?

5. // Kate Spade Planners - I love the Lilly Pultizer agendas, but the Kate Spade planners have always won out with me, just because they are so classic and yet so functional. I love the gold and white polka dot, but they have lots of other patterns too! I use my planners religiously during the school year; there's no better way to keep track of everything in a busy schedule.

6. // Monogrammed Water Bottle - Staying hydrated is really important in school, and if you know me you know I can't resist putting monograms on absolutely everything. I love slicing up a few lemons and putting them in my bottle for a bit of extra flavor!

7 // Zebra Midliner - These are a hybrid between a marker and a highlighter, and they are absolutely essential for anyone who loves colorful notes.

How is school going for you?


Soaking Up the Sun

shirt // belt // shorts (similar) // watch // bracelet // shoes

Summer is (sadly) coming to a close. I go back to school in about a week and a half, and I've already bought school supplies and new pieces for my fall wardrobe. To help round out the summer, Mary and I took a little excursion to go sunflower picking! As soon as she suggested it, I knew I wanted to go - and it was just as gorgeous as I imagined. I don't think I've ever seen so  many flowers at once!m The farm provided baskets and even had little chalk boards that you could write messages on for photos. Wouldn't it be a great spot for engagement or graduation pictures?

For my outfit, I tried to keep it as comfortable as possible. It was crazy hot, so I'm so glad I went for shorts instead of the pants I had initially planned on wearing. The pair I picked are the brand British Khaki (which you can find at Marshall's and TJ Maxx), and they're some of the most comfortable shorts I own. I tucked my Vineyard Vines white button-down into the shorts under my favorite leather belt, and went for classic Sperry's on my feet. I think this would be the perfect look for those of you who are heading back to school and want to feel like it's fall while staying cool in the summer heat!

No outfit is ever complete without good accessories, and today I paired my favorite Daniel Wellington watch with my new go-to bracelet from Lifelines apparel. They were kind enough to send me their Cunningham Bracelet, and I absolutely adore it! It's such a classic, gorgeous piece, and I've been wearing it nonstop with everything in my wardrobe. If you're a prep, you need one of these in your life. They make this style of bracelet in lots of different color combinations, and they're all made of real sailing materials. Whenever I put it on I feel like I'm bringing a little bit of the sea back to my everyday life.

Have you gone back to school yet?


Back-to-School Makeup for the Preppy Girl

A few of you have emailed or messaged me via instagram (@brunettesandpearls) asking about what makeup I'm wearing in my photos. So as part of my back-to-school series, I decided to show you my school makeup essentials! For me, less is more for makeup, but I do like to wear some to school to feel put-together. Here's what I recommend:

1. // Base - For school, I would recommenced that you go with the lightest possible coverage you feel comfortable with (you want it to look natural). I rotate through different bases depending on how my skin looks on a particular day, but most of the time I use either the Revlon Colorstay Foundation or the IT Cosmetics Celebration Foundation. I also recommend the Garnier BB Cream; it is very natural and there are different choices for people of all skin types.

2. // Concealer - I use two different shades of the Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Concealer, which is amazing and very inexpensive. The brightener shade goes under my eyes (it has a pink undertone that cancels out dark circles) and the light shade conceals any major breakouts that need extra coverage. If you'd like, you can skip a base and just use concealer.

3. // Powder - If you're using a powder foundation you can skip this, but personally I like using a powder under my eyes to set my concealer. To look as natural as possible, I go for a translucent powder like this one from NYX.

4. // Blush - A cream blush is a must because it brings color back to your face, looks natural and gives a pretty glow on the cheeks. I like this one from NYX in the color Natural, but there are lots of good options at the drugstore.

5. // Eyebrow Pencil -  If you have amazing eyebrows already you can use a brow gel (I love the clear brow gel from Anastasia). But for people like me who need a little more help in the brow department, I've found that a pencil really is the easiest and most natural way of filling them in. I swear by the Milk Makeup Eyebrow pencil; it's the perfect natural color and even though it's more expensive it's worth every penny.

6. // Mascara - This is one step that I think makes a huge difference in my routine. I think that every girl should have a good mascara on hand at all times, especially for school. It instantly brightens your look and brings attention to your eyes, making you look more awake (which I definitely need when I'm running on coffee and six hours of sleep). My favorite is the Super Sizer Fibers mascara from Covergirl.

7. // Lip Balm - As far as lips go, for school I don't think you need to wear anything heavy like lipstick or gloss. On an everyday basis, I usually just go for a regular lip balm - it moisturizes and gives my lips a little shine. My favorite is the lip repair by Aquaphor.

Extra: A cute makeup bag! This one is from Kate Spade, and I just love the stripes.


Lilly Pulitzer After Party Sale Tips and Wishlist

The Lilly Pulitzer After Party Sale begins tomorrow everyone! This is an amazing chance to grab all of your must-have Lilly items at incredible prices, and it only comes around twice a year. Here are some things to keep in mind in order to make the best of it:

  • Lilly will have items from past seasons. Did you miss out on a piece from last season that you can't get your hands on any more? Look for it in the After Party Sale, as Lilly brings back items from the year that aren't available anymore. In my wishlist above, I've included some pieces (like that adorable tank top I blogged about a while back!) that I wish I had picked up. I'll look for it tomorrow!
  • Have your information ready beforehand. In order to make checkout fast and easy and to ensure you can get everything you want, it's a good idea to create an account on the Lilly website and add your shipping and billing information. 
  • Get in the digital line. When you enter Lilly's website, you'll be placed in a digital line in order to access the site. This is a little different from other online stores, but it prevents the site from crashing or being slow (flashback to the disaster that was the first day of Lilly for Target)! In order to get into the site quickly after the sale starts, it's a good idea to head over to the site early in order to have a good place in line. 
  • Use the filters! Once you enter the site, don't forget to use the filters to sort items by size, color, price, and style. This is a great and effective way to quickly see all the items that are available for you, and saves you from the disappointment of finding an amazing shift dress only to discover that it's sold out in your size.
Have fun shopping! I can't wait. 


Lilly Pulitzer After Party Sale!

Lilly Pulitzer After Party Sale

Big news everyone - the elusive Lilly Pultizer After Party Sale is coming online and in-stores at 8am on Monday!

If you're a huge Lilly lover like me, the After Party Sale is one of the absolute best opportunities to get your hands on some in-season, super-cute items at amazing prices. When Lilly does a sale, they like to make it an event - which it why they don't have a sale section on their website, and instead host biannual site-wide sales in January and August. Stay tuned to see some of my favorite items at Lilly to get some wishlist inspiration and some of my tips for shopping the sale so that you get everything you're looking for.


Feeling Bookish

sweater // button-up (similar) // belt // shorts // shoes (similar)

Although I'm sad to say it, summer is slowly coming to a close. Fall sports tryouts at my school were at the beginning of this week, and practices started last Thursday. Some people are already heading off to college! While I don't have to go back until the beginning of September, that's just a few short weeks away - and I have to say, even though I love summer, I'm super excited for the fall season. Today's post features a classic outfit that's perfect for those days at the start of the school year where it's not quite summer and not quite fall.

This post is also special because it's a collaboration with Asha and Adriana of Step With Prep! Check out their blog and instagram (@stepwithprep) to see the back-to-school outfits that they'll be posting. They wear uniforms, so their outfits will be perfect for those who want to know how to look put-together and stylish in a uniform. They're both gorgeous, and I adore their style!

Would you guys like to see more back-to-school posts in the future? Let me know!


Block Island Bluffs


earrings (similar) // sweater // shirt (similar) // watch // jeans // shoes (similar)

According to the BI Historical Society (they have a great museum on the island if you're into history), the bluffs near Block Island's Southeast Lighthouse are some of the most dramatic in New England. While I haven't been to every bluff in the northeast, I can tell you that Block Island's are absolutely beautiful and they have an amazing view of the ocean. On my last day on the island, my brother and I walked from my grandma's house to the bluffs to take photos of the water, and we ended up snapping some pictures of my outfit as well.

You may be wondering why I'm wearing jeans in the middle of summer, but it was actually very cool on the island and the breeze on top of the bluffs made it a little chilly. I'm not crazy, I promise! You can easily swap the pants out with some white chino shorts if your area is too hot.