What a month July was! I feel like throughout the whole month I never stopped moving; imagine the energizer bunny and multiply that by ten. While it was an absolutely insane month both on a personal and a professional level, everything that happened was incredibly positive. One of the main things that made July so crazy was moving into our new apartment! The whole process has been overwhelming in a way I didn't expect it to be, but as of a couple of weeks ago, we're really starting to feel settled in our new place, and I honestly could not be happier with our apartment. Luckily, I had a lot of weekends off in July to spend time with family and friends, and thoroughly enjoy summertime (even though I'm not much of a summer person).
I scroll through Instagram far more than I'd like to admit. However, Instagram also serves as one of my greatest sources of inspiration both for me personally and this blog as a creative outlet. Ever since Instagram launched their "saved" feature, it's become more of a Pinterest-like platform that I can use to make mood boards for what is inspiring me at the moment. I follow a lot of people on Instagram, and because there are so many creators on Instagram, it can feel very overwhelming to find new creators to follow. I personally don't like the Explore page at all (a lot of it just seems very spammy), so most of the time I just find new people to follow through people that I already follow.
Frecklesnur ~ I found Naria's instagram a couple of weeks ago via Lizzy Hadfield (aka Shotfromthestreet). I mainly love her account because it is just so beautiful to look at. I love the tone that all of her images have and it definitely gives me inspiration for my own photography. Also, as you could tell based from her Instagram handle, she has the most enviable freckles ever!
Shnordic ~ I have been throwing myself into interior inspiration over the past two months because of the move. Even though I've been finding the majority of my interiors inspiration via Pinterest, there are a few Instagram accounts that I follow almost solely for interiors content, one of my favorites being Shnordic. The account is run by Susanna Hawkins, who is a UK-based interior designer, and is a self-described "scandi maximalist". I love that her style is very chic and Scandinavian, but it all looks livable and realistic. So many interior designers create spaces that are almost too perfect to live in, but all of Susanna's spaces just create an err of comfort and ease that I hope to bring to our apartment.
Brittany Bathgate ~ I don't know if I could write a post about where I get inspiration on Instagram without mentioning Brittany Bathgate. She's someone that I've been following for quite some time now, but recently her content has been even more inspiring. One of the things that I love about Brittany is the way she uses proportions and shapes in her clothing to make her outfits, which are normally pretty minimal (especially in terms of color), more interesting and eye-catching. As someone who can very easily get caught in an endless cycle of wearing jeans and a t-shirt almost every day, Brittany provides some good ideas for how to mix things up and incorporate some more interesting proportions in my wardrobe.
Sara Tasker ~ Sara is the absolute genius behind the blog and Instagram by the name of Me & Orla. Sara is a blogger and content creator, who is super well-versed in growing blogs and Instagram pages into full-blown businesses. Her Instagram content is not only incredibly beautiful, but useful as well. As I've been trying to get my freelance career going, her advice has been incredibly motivating and helpful, especially if you're someone who wants to grow your freelance career as organically as possible.
Even though we don't have much in the way of seasons in Northern California, I feel the need to switch up my skincare every few months to address the fact that my skin somehow reacts to the changing of the seasons even when those changes aren't all that drastic. Because I'm such a product junkie, switching up my routine every once and awhile just gets me excited and feels like a small act of self-care. I'm always pretty stream-lined about my skincare routine, but during the summer months it generally becomes even more streamlined, mainly because my skin doesn't need as much during the warmer months.
When it comes to cleansing I generally stick to the same Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser for both morning and night, it's just so easy and basic that I don't see myself needing or wanting to try another cleanser any time soon. For my morning routine, post-cleansing I will do a light spritz of the Heritage Store Rosewater, which feels amazing especially on hotter summer days. I just started using the La Roche-Posay Toleriane Fluide Emulsion, which is a super lightweight but hydrating moisturizer, as I wanted something a tad lighter weight than my usual daily moisturizer: Glossier Priming Moisturizer Rich. I like this moisturizer a lot because it's light enough to use under SPF and not end up feeling like your skin is being weighed down by a lot of heavy product. Speaking of SPF, I've been using the Glossier Invisible Shield on a daily basis, mainly because it is so lightweight and comfortable to wear. If I'm having a day where I find myself more in the sun, I use the Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Liquid SPF 70, because it's a bit more heavy-duty and the SPF is higher (although I still make sure to reapply constantly!). Last but not least is the Ole Henriksen Banana Bright Eye Cream, which is lightweight enough to be used under makeup. I'm not too sure how well this has been working in terms of brightening my under eye area (mainly because my dark circles are genetic), but it is a nice eye cream in terms of the texture and its ability to moisturize.
My nighttime routine is still pretty simple, but I add in a couple of extra steps just to make it feel a bit more relaxing. Because I wear SPF on a daily basis, double cleansing is super important in making sure that my skin is clean of any and all product I used during the day. I use the Clinique Take The Day Off Balm and then follow up with the Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser as my second, more lightweight cleanse. Depending on how my skin is feeling I will use an array of different products for specific skin concerns I need to address. If I have any active breakouts, my go-to is the La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo, I've used this solidly for the last four years or so and it works like a charm at clearing most kinds of breakouts. About every other night I will use the Glossier Solution, which is an acid exfoliant. I do like Solution, however I'm not sure if I will repurchase in the future, mainly because it didn't wow me (P50 here I come!). If my skin is feeling at all fragile, or I have residual spots that towards the end of the healing process, I use the Pai Rosehip Regenerate Oil, which is one of the best face oils if you have sensitive skin or are just new to the world of face oils in general. Finally, every night I use the Kiehls Midnight Recovery Eye Treatment under my eyes and the Drunk Elephant La La Retro Whip Face Cream as my evening moisturizer.
June was quite a month! Most of the month was consumed by apartment hunting, furniture buying, and general planning. There wasn't a whole lot of free time this past month, which mainly means there hasn't been as much to photograph but I still tried to document as much as possible. I definitely found myself forgetting to take out my camera during the more exciting parts of the month because I was trying to be more in the moment and whipping out my camera just wasn't the first thing on my mind. However, looking back I wish I had photographed some more of those moments and I definitely will for this next month's post!
We are moving in a couple of weeks and I could not be more excited about it! Obviously I'm incredibly excited to be moving in with Brad, but I'm also really excited about the prospect of building a little home in a very conscious way, with pieces that we will want to keep for years to come. I've aways loved interiors, which I think mainly comes down to the fact that my dad works in construction and home renovation and my parents spent a lot of my childhood renovating our own home with the help of some family friends who were incredible interior designers. I also am someone who is very much affected by the space around me. My mood changes so much depending on how I perceive the space around me, which is why I always feel so stressed when there is any sort of mess in my space.
We are just renting our new apartment, so doing any sort of permanent changes are out the window at the moment, however we have a really great blank canvas to work with in our new place and I think we will be able to make it feel like our own in a lot of other ways. We don't have a ton of furniture, but we definitely have enough to be able to live comfortably. One of the good things about having a pretty minimal furniture collection is that we can wait to buy certain pieces that we know we will want to get a lot of longevity out of. We aren't planning on buying everything as soon as we move in, but rather plan on getting furniture piece by piece so as to guarantee we are finding our favorite pieces. Both Brad and I are very much drawn to the mid-century look, but neither of us want to get everything to look like it came straight out of a West Elm catalogue (although there is absolutely nothing wrong with that). A lot of the pieces we have our eye on definitely lean towards the mid-century look, but we are planning on breaking it up with some more traditional-looking pieces to keep a balance and just put our stamp on the place a bit more.
I've been finding most of my inspiration on Pinterest and Instagram, although it's obviously much easier to find specific things on Pinterest. I want the whole space overall to feel very relaxed and cozy, so I'm sure there will be a lot of throw pillows and blankets involved in our decoration process. The apartment also has really nice soft light and I think that'll just enhance the cozy feel we want the place to have. Of course there will be tons of plants everywhere, and to be honest all I want to spend money on at the moment is plants and furniture.
I'm incredibly excited to document this whole process on the blog, although I'm sure there will be some significant time between when we move in and when we'll feel like it's totally done. I'm very happy that none of this process feels rushed and that hopefully we'll have a place that we will want to stay in for years to come!