Friday, March 30, 2012

Girl Crush of the Week - Alice Richardson

Long live the Queen!
We are most honored to introduce you to this week's girl crush, the ultra fab Alice Richardson of Summer is a Verb!  Can we totally honest here? The opportunity to feature this week's Girl Crush feels a lot like having the Queen swing by our humble beach shanty for tea Diet Coke. Take a moment and bow to the Queen. Go ahead, we're totally bowing. Her effortlessly preppy style and eternally perfect tan initially caught our eye, but it was her wit and charm that kept us hooked (ex: she dressed her cats up like Big Edie and Little Edie. The pictures in that post are not to be missed). In addition to her good looks, charm and wit, she has the inside scoop on all the preppiest trends and brands, which we of course LOVE!

Her blog Summer is a Verb chronicles her fabulous life as "a tongue-in-cheek bon vivant living in Greenwich, CT with my globe trotting husband Babe and our nutty Himalayans, George and Lolly Rockefeller. Rendezvous with me, an old school prep, as I juggle aspirations of being on the "Best Dressed Parisienne Gypset List", endless summering, Hermès wish lists, Diet Coke and pretzel lunches, white bikinis, PTH's, sisters, nieces, bff's, all things Lilly, Mrs. Roper and the resurrection of the Jacques Cohen espadrille."

Basically, we pray five times a day in the direction of her Hermés vaults in Greenwich (wouldn't the security guards' outfits be amazing in the Hermés vault? I digress!).  Enjoy getting to know our favorite, (and soon to be your favorite, too!) the ever-so-chic Alice Richardson!

Style icons? Jackie O and my friend Dorli's mother, Coco. They exude thee most harmonious blending of sporty American and European élan that has taken me yeeeaaars to cultivate. It's that perfect storm of tan limbs, pearls and old khakis with Pucci, Canforas and Hermès kerchiefs. Toss in Carolyn Bessette Kennedy's love of the Petit Bateau tee and Mrs. Roper's fondness for the caftan and you'd have my ultimate fashion love child...

Design philosophy?
  1. Art takes priority over furniture in our house. A Kevin Fitzgerald feeds our soul way more than having enough seating ever could.
  2. I'd rather go without than settle. Which would explain why my bedside RL lamp is sitting on the floor while I continue my search for the perfect nightstand. 
  3. Learn to live with your beautiful things. Lolly has made a p/t job of perforating our linen headboard with her nails but, I far prefer being awakened each morn by her sweet, post scale crowing to having a holeless headboard.
  4. Don't invest in large pieces if there's still some apartment dwelling in your future. We learned this the hard way when our over sized white sofa wouldn't fit through our G'town front door.

Babygirl working those Roger Vivier flats with the perfect accessory...a killer tan!
Favorite book of all time? While most kids were getting Fun With Dick and Jane before bed, my Mother was reading to me from Kipling and Jane Eyre. And, Little Women is the first book I recall her reading that I got completely lost in. It also led to my attempt to sleep with a clothes pin on my nose.

Best advice you ever received? All those morsels of wisdom my Mother trotted out ad nauseum growing up, or as my sister fondly says, Mom thinks she's sitting on a mountain top;  What goes around comes around, Don't blow out someone else's candle to make your own burn brighter and the perennial fav, This too shall pass. It always does, doing so gets you no where and, oh, I guess it did.

Praying to the Scarf Gods that Babe lets her go in the Paris Hermés store unsupervised.
Favorite stores? That be the HermèsRalphLaurenLillyPulitzerCalypso store. Know of it?

Dream place to live? Oceanfront with our families and bff's all living on the same street. Especially if that street happened to be Gin Lane.

I she serious with that hair and that tan? Keeping people safe never looked so good!
The one product you're obsessed with right now? Mario Badescu's Seaweed Night Cream. I've received so many compliments on my skin since using it that I've started slathering it in the morning as well. Next up, rolling in it.

Biggest indulgence? Yves Delorme 500 thread count bed linens and botox. Both cost a king's ransom, require a lot of maintenance and once you've indulged, there's no turning back. 

Girl crush? Oh, I've already put in my request to come back as Gwyneth Paltrow in my next life. She's the whole pretty, smart, refined, funny, talented package. Not to mention best buds with Valentino and Reese.

Favorite song? The bff is gonna scream foul if I don't cop to Bruce Springsteen's Tunnel of Love. That song played on a loop for so long when we were living together in our early 20's that I'd place money on her insisting it be worked into my funeral procession should she outlive me. I'd like to take this opportunity to request she also add Skynard's Tuesday's Gone and The Ballad of Curtis Loew to the lineup.

Prized possession? Well, I've experienced a plane losing it's lift and several, middle of the night fire alarm awakenings so, I know firsthand that true prized possessions, where your immediate thoughts land, are your loved ones and pets. Buuut, just in case my luck should run, out I formally bequeath my 13 pair of Canfora sandals to my size 9 niece Emma.

Nothing better than a blonde with a dark tan wearing an armful of pearls and gold!
Current hangout? At my desk in the guest room with Pilgie and Lolly just a pinning away.

Motto? It's the accumulation of many small decisions over time, more so than the few big ones, that ultimately chart the course of your life.

Being so fabulous is exhausting!
Best place on earth? In bed with Babe and the Ti-Babes on our freshly ironed, a buck for every thread count sheets, right before we all fall to sleep.

Favorite drink? Water. Such a surfer answer. 

If this were a picture of either of us, we'd blow it up to life size and hang it in our homes in the path of maximum foot traffic. It would also be every year's Holiday card, forever.
Be sure to check out The Divine Ms. Alice's blog, Summer is a Verb (as if you're not already reading it religiously)! We'd like to give a huge thank you and many xo's to Alice for being so gracious, funny and sweet - and for not being weirded out that we emailed her re: our crush on her. You're the best in the biz, Alice!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Bothersome Bangs: Tips and Styles for Growing Out Your Bangs

Sienna, Nicole and Reese all looking oh-so-chic in their expertly styled bangs.
We've all done it. We've all, at one point or another, jumped on the bangs bandwagon. Bangs can be so amazing- some sexy, some chic, some cute- so its understandable why we all went there. I mean, who DOESN'T want to look like Zooey Deschanel. Le sigh.
The problem with bangs comes in styling them. Of course there are people out there are masters with a round brush, but for the rest of us, the charm of bangs wears off after about a month. So what do we do? We grow them out. UGH.

As we all know, growing out bangs is a nightmare. As my friend Kali (the lovely lady who requested this post) recently lamented, "I am going to look like a gymnast for a year, with bobby pins and barrettes to spare."

So we here at Tartan & Sequins are here to help. Check out the following tips and styles to keep you looking fabulous while growing out bangs.

  • Trim those bad boys. Now it may seem counter-intuitive to cut something you want to grow, but the bangs need to be reshaped as they grow. According to this article from, you should have your stylist cut blunt bangs at an angle once they've passed the bottom of your eyebrows to soften the look. If your bangs are already side-swept, let the outer corners grow while micro-trimming the middle.
  • Play around with your part. A side part is especially helpful in concealing your bangs while they are growing out. You can use some product like a wax to smooth them down and tuck them behind your ears- OR you can use your new best friend- the bobby pin.
  • Hairspray, hairspray, hairspray. Do yourself a favor and buy the largest can of Elnett you can find. This extra firm hairspray will tame fly-aways and keep hair in place for hours. Sure you feel like you have some serious helmet-head but you won't have to worry about your hair moving all night!
  • Fake it 'til you make it. This article on explains a trick for having your cake and eating it too. They say you can pin back the top section of your bangs, leaving wispy, shorter pieces underneath. Keep those pieces trimmed and worn as normal bangs, while growing out the top section. Once the top pieces are grown out, you can blend them back into your hair. Now, I haven't tried this one, but it seems like a clever way to make it work.
  • Bang braid. I have scoped out two versions of this look for you. The first picture below is basically a french braid using your bangs and the second is a looser braid. Both are pretty cute and pretty easy. Instructions can be found here or theres a helpful tutorial here.
  • Side pony. Pictured below, you can see the bangs are braided/twisted to hold them in place. Wearing the pony low and to the side not only helps catch the bangs right where they are growing out, but is an elegant spin on the pony.
  • The trusty headband. Hey if Olivia Wilde can rock one, we all can. I mean she WAS married to a prince after all. Grown-up headbands come in a variety of styles with everything from a classic black to more glammed up bedazzled numbers. Just make sure that you use a styling pomade to keep the bangs down otherwise they will spike up behind the headband.
  • Twist back. The super simple cousin of the bang braid. You simply part your hair down the middle and twist the bangs on both sides back as far as they will go. Then just pin them using bobby pins and tuck under your hair. You may think this is tooooooo simple, but there are ways to change it up. As you can see below, Olivia Palermo has jazzed the look up by curling her ends and Whitney Port has added in a sparkly headband for a glam boho look. 

For Olivia's curls, I highly recommend a curling wand such as this one. Seriously, its life-changing.
For Whitney's headband, I found this, this and this. I admittedly want all of them. 

  • The Brigitte Bardot. Love her or hate her, Kim Kardashian's Bardot-inspired hairdo is perfect for growing out bangs. By teasing the crown of your hair and pinning your hair half-up, the long bangs frame your face beautifully. Here is a step-by-step guide to get this classically glamorous look.

I hope you all found the tips and styles helpful. If you have any others to share, let us all know in the comments section! The more help, the better when it comes to growing out bangs :)

Monday, March 26, 2012

10 Things Every Man Should Own - Sweaters

Its that time again. You know, time for me to help you dress your boyfriend/ husband. OR for guys, for me to help you dress better in an effort to score more chicks. Either way, its all for a good cause.

For our fourth installment of the 10 Things Every Man Should Own, we'll be discussing sweaters. Now many may think that sweaters are only for fall and winter, but really they are great layering pieces that can be worn year-round depending on the weight and material. 

Sweaters are also great because they can dress up a look without a lot of effort. For example, if you've been hanging out with your friends all day watching March Madness but have a date that night- you can just throw on one of the options below (combined with your dark denim, classic t-shirt and loafers of course) and you are date-ready. Who knows, your date may even ignore the faint bar odor and glassy eyes?



Polo Ralph Lauren

Mr Porter




A special thanks to my most fashionable friends PJ and Mark for helping on today's selections!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Black Tie Affair Follow-Up

As some of you may remember, back in February I was trying to decide on a gown to wear to a friend's black tie wedding in West Palm Beach in March. I posted four options here from Rent the Runway and asked you all to help me decide. You all were so fabulous and really helped me chose the pink Halston gown pictured above.

I couldn't have been happier with my choice! Minus having to cover up with a shawl during the mass due to the cleavage factor, the dress was perfect. Here are some shots from the night. I apologize for the poor quality of the iPhone photos :)

The dress in all her glory.

My handsome date and I at the reception.

Some of my college roommates and I. How pretty are the
two bridesmaids dresses in the middle?!

The fabulous bride and groom. Photo courtesy of the
mother of the bride.
The beautiful reception at The Everglades Club.

Again, thank you all so much for weighing in. I'm pretty sure I would have gone with one of the black ones if left to my own devices so I really appreciate everyones help!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

How We Style It - Tweed

Photo Credit: Nayomi Ho
Let's talk about tweed. What used to be know as the unofficial uniform for older, rich ladies, has recently had a resurgence in fashion. Now one could argue tweed has always been cool (I mean I certainly think so) but now its really hitting the town in a big way. 
Illustration by Sara Renner of Avtomobile
The cool thing about tweed is that it can be worn in a variety of ways- casual, formal, and edgy to name a few. It can also be found in jackets, skirts, heels and bags. Check out our spin on the classic tweed after the jump!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012


Oh dear. Via.
Okay friends, its time for a serious discussion here. No, not whether I should get  bangs or not. No, something far more important. What we need to discuss is LOUNGEWEAR.

Now, when Juicy Couture started making those little terrycloth and velour numbers back in the early 2000s, I was all about it. Who wasn't? But now, 10 years later, I am struggling to find it acceptable to rock a pair of those same Juicy sweats to run to the grocery store. I'm not sure when everyone got rid of those numbers and upgraded to new loungewear, but I am still wearing them so I need some help. BADLY. 

Where to begin? Allison had some great ideas for leaving the gym in style here that can be repurposed as loungewear. In terms of my own research, the following items are def on my list of things to buy:

JCrew Knit Tunic Dress
Gap Solid Elbow-Sleeve T-Shirt
JCrew Stripe Hoodie
Gap Terry Sweatshirt
Current/Elliot The Freshman Pocket Tank
Lanston Double Layer Tank

Claridge + King Reversible Leggings
Lululemon Wunder Under Crop

Do you all have any favorites to share? Lord knows I need all the help I can get!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Girl Crush of the Week - Ally Lewis

Miss Ally Lewis, just being her very crush-worthy self!
Photo Credit: Noa Griffel
We are so excited to introduce you to Ally Lewis, this week's Girl Crush! A fellow Miami (and Delta Gamma!) alum living in New York City, Ally is the rarest of rare - a girl who is as sweet and friendly as she is ridiculously pretty and stylish.

Her impeccable taste seems a natural fit for Tory Burch, so it's no surprise that Ally writes for the Tory Burch blog and works on a number of other creative projects for the brand. Have fun getting to know Ally, and be sure to follow her on all of the Tory Burch social media sites, linked at the bottom of the post!
  • Style icons? Tory Burch, Lauren Hutton, Grace Kelly and French actresses from the 60's 
Ally in the Tory Burch office
Photo Credit: Jamie Beck

  • Style philosophy? Everything looks better if you're comfortable and confident.  
  • Favorite book of all time? Love in the Time of Cholera (Gabriel Garcia Marquez) and Bel Canto (Ann Patchett) 
  • Best advice you ever received? Be nice to everyone. 
  • Favorite stores? Barneys, Fivestory, Colette, INA, AreaID for home 
  • Dream place to live? New York City 
Ally and her friend Lindsey (another adorable Miami girl...obviously!)

  • The one product you're obsessed with right now? Jouer Luminizing Moisture Tint and Laura Mercier Hydrating Primer mixed together   
  • Biggest indulgence? Pasta (the indulgent part is that it's almost daily) 
  • Girl crush? Meredith Melling Burke and Emanuelle Alt
Ally at a Tory Burch show
Photo Credit: Noa Griffel

  • Favorite song? At the moment, Birdy's rendition of Skinny Love by Bon Iver…and I'm still playing Wick-It the Instigator's Black Keys/Big Boi mashups   
  • Prized possession? Jewelry from my parents  
  • Current hangout? Still can't seem to stay away from the Jane…and I'm starting to wonder if L'Artusi would let me have a standing weekly reservation...   
  • Motto? Grace under pressure

Photo Credit: Noa Griffel
  • Best place on earth? Colombier Beach, St. Barth's   
  • Favorite drink? Southside
So, are you totally obsessed with Ally!? We know, we are too. Be sure to follow her on the Tory Burch blog and the other social media sites listed below (they just launched the Tory Burch Pinterest account, and their boards are beyond)!





Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Dream Desk

Hi everyone! I am back from my European tour and have some some big news- I am starting a new job next week! I am excited about the new agency, the team, the account and I will admit too that I am excited for a new desk. The office, from what I remember, is all white with accents of lime green and is fabulously open. It lines up perfectly with my vision of a dream office.

Being the wannabe designer that I am, I have started using Pinterest to collect inspiration for my new desk. Here is what I am feeling:

So the vibe is very white and clean but still pretty. I want to use both modern and more traditional items in the space. In terms of accessories to accomplish this, I am thinking of the following:

Russell + Hazel Acrylic Box with Notecards - Totally Post-Its' cooler older sister

Russell + Hazel File Organizer - Despite me trying not to be a "paper person"
sometimes its necessary

Rose Tumbler - Great for flowers

Pineapple Mint Julep Cup - Great for pens and pencils

The Carbon Crusader Pencils - My desk would not be complete without the pencils above
that I received from Allison
Iomoi Pencils - As you can see, I have a thing for pencils

Paris Print - I am absolutely enchanted with this amazing place

Addicted To Flats Print by CocoDraws - Because, well, I am addicted

Macaron Print - I'm sure this comes to no surprise to those of you who follow me 
on Instagram (user name LAgirlinSf if you don't :))

So what do you think of my selections? Any other ideas given my inspiration pics? Thanks everyone! Xo J