Sunday, April 13, 2014

Warm Weather Skin Care Favorites!

As it is starting to warm up, I recently did a "Spring Cleaning" of my bathroom cabinet. Gone were all of the creams, oils, and heavy moisturizers and in were the light serums. Layering is great for fall and winter when it comes to... well, almost anything. For the spring, I introduced 3 new products from a recent Sephora haul that have so far kept me glowing and not greasy.

Any allergy sufferer has at least one time in their lives woken up, looked in the mirror and saw a puffed out marshmallow version of themselves. This eye roller has caffeine in it, which wakes up the eye area and de-puffs. I like to keep mine in the fridge for a cooling and refreshing feeling.

Josie Maran - 100 percent Pure Argan Oil Light

I am a huge fan of the original version for the fall and winter when my pesky dry patches come out to play. This version goes on much lighter and leaves a sheer, semi matte finish. Some people prefer to use it during the day but I like to keep this as my night time indulgence!

Peter Thomas Roth - Rose Stem Cell Bio-Repair Gel Mask

Another item I like to keep in my fridge! This mask is a new release at Sephora but helps with filling out fine lines, wrinkles and getting rid of dullness. It's easy to go through this quickly so I use a small spoon to take only what I need and not to contaminate the rest of the product by constantly sticking my fingers in the jar!

Friday, March 28, 2014

What I'm Currently Listening to

During my first run of the Spring (took me long enough, I know!),  halfway thru I realized how depressing my playlists were. Granted, they are great artists... Coldplay, Lana Del Rey, John Legend but they don't give me what I need to push me through 3 to 5 miles. I decided to invest in an iPod shuffle strictly for working out. I got the slate grey color (to tone down my neon everything else) which also has a handy clip so I can clip it to my sleeve or collar. So far, I have been blasting...

  • Showstopper by Brandon and Leah
  • Burial by Yogi ft. Pusha T
  • Blue Jeans RAC remix by Lana Del Rey
  • Give Me Your Love by Florrie
  • You're the One by Charli XCX
  • All Night by Icona Pop
  • Only You by Ellie Goulding
  • ... and quite a few Kanye West songs ( He has terrible a terrible attitude, I know, I know but can put out some motivating jams!)
What are some songs I should have on my "Workout Only" playlist?

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Spring 2014 Trends

Hi all!

Long time, no post... (cue the crickets!) It's been extremely crazy these past few months with one thing happening after another. Unfortunately, my blog has been the one thing to suffer the most. I am currently getting back into the flow of writing and hopefully you'll stick with me while I get back on my feet.


Without a doubt, Spring and Summer are my favorite seasons to dress for! While I love the color palette that Fall brings, I love the ethereal look and feel of light fabrics blowing in the breeze. The only thing that is standing in my way of mirrored aviators and maxi skirts has been this unstable weather! Someone needs to get ahold of Mother Nature and have a serious sit down. While I very much consider myself a leader, I will be more than happily following these trends!

Spring 2014 Trends

What Spring 2014 trends are you excited for?

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

And the Oscar for Best Party Food Goes To...

You! If you keep some of these tips in mind for your fabulous Oscar Night themed party. This post is going to focus, however, on the thing I love most in life: FOOD.

Now, before I get into the rest of the article, I want to write a huge I'M SORRY for the silence! I'm sure you all know what I mean when I say "holy holidays." What madness that was! And since this blog isn't my full-time gig, I'm sure you all can understand. But, without further adieu...

After years of hosting my own Oscars party, I have come to learn what does and doesn’t work. And when it comes to food, I like to think that I’ve learned a trick or two. For one thing, the Oscars can go on for a while (we are talking at least three hours here), so you will want to make sure you have something to feed your guests. From finger food to drinks and bite-sized desserts, who doesn’t love a little nosh? And the tip nominations for an amazing Oscar party are...

Stick with your theme!
Loved Dallas Buyers Club? Try to make some Dallas Barbecue! How about including a creative twist (and play on words) for Blue Jasmine and serve some jasmine rice curry with “blue” (okay, it’s more purple, but work with me here) cauliflower. Is Leonardo DiCaprio your favorite actor thanks to The Wolf of Wall Street or the Great Gatsby? Serve some “DiCappuccino’s” to go with dessert! Just have fun with it, and don’t be afraid to think outside of the box! If you’re having a potluck, just have everyone choose a movie to play with.

Help dress up popcorn!
After all, what is a movie without popcorn? Wow your guests with a popcorn bar, with options from the sweet (think creamy caramel, classic M&Ms, or sticky peanut butter) to the savory (like crispy bacon, garlic sauce, or cheesy parmesan). All you need to do is make some buttered popcorn and hand out some containers to your guests. When I have a sweet tooth I like adding chocolate, caramel, and coconut, but if I want something more savory and salty, nothing can keep me from taking my popcorn and adding some cilantro and lime (and sometimes a hint of sriracha). And if I really can’t decide between my sweet tooth and my salt cravings? Caramel bacon popcorn it is (trust me).

Dessert time!
And even if you don’t have a meal to go along with your party, the most important thing is dessert. It is what everyone really looks forward to (besides seeing Ellen dance this year, that is). I have been doing my annual Oscar party for a while now, and absolutely NOTHING has ever gotten me as many compliments as when I did Bakerella’s Awards Night Sugar Cookies. They are delicious, easy to make, and stand up like statues when all is said in done! Now how cool is that?

And if all else fails...

This is what I have learned to avoid!

1. Stay away from food dye! That is how I ended up the weirdest “Green Mile Long Spongecake.” It is a very long and very unappetizing story. Trust me.

2. Food temperature and serving time can be tricky. Plus, I mean you are going to want to watch the awards show too, right? The more your food can be served at room temperature or cold, the less you have to worry about timing everything perfectly.

3. Spiciness is tricky! I love spicy food, but I think I was the only one who got to really eat (and appreciate) my “Blindsided Chili.” So step back from the sriracha, cajun, and pepper, and leave the seasoning up to your guests.

At the end of the day...

The Oscars are a wonderful time to hang out with friends, talk about all of the wonderful movies that have come out within the past year, and eat some really good food.

Monday, February 24, 2014

GG's First Music Monday: Rdio

So, I seem to love everything, and music falls under that umbrella for sure. I see a lot of bloggers have a "Music Monday" installment, and I want to jump on that bandwagon starting now! Having a scheduled post like that will also help me keep up with my little corner of the Internet here on Gray & Gabbana.

For this first one, I just discovered an awesome online radio platform called Rdio. You can listen to full albums, new releases, EVERYTHING, for free. Yep - free. And in their entirety. And minimal ads.

There's no point in really talking much about this. Just check it out, and you can even follow me/check out my collections and playlists as I make them!

I'm currently listening to the new Angel Olsen album, "Burn Your Fire For No Witness" -- it's incredible.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

4 Tips for Bridesmaid Dress Bliss

There are so many films out there that feature bridesmaid dresses as the butt of their jokes, with “Bridesmaids” and “27 Dresses” being just a couple of them. My sister and I both enjoy a good chick flick with a tub of ice cream as much as the next pair of siblings, but when she got engaged, she promised me and her friends she'd never force us into any heinous dresses—something for which I am extremely grateful! There are a lot of things to consider in choosing bridesmaid dresses, and I've got a few of them here.


As a bride, you have to understand that all of your bridesmaids probably don't have the same body shape. To keep everyone happy, it's important to have the intent to flatter everyone's body types as much as possible. Luckily, there are some great options out there: for example, A-line and empire-waist dresses tend to flatter most body shapes, and depending on the time of year, you can opt for knee-length or floor-length dresses to bring in a seasonal feel that your bridesmaids will also appreciate.

You could also opt for something more personal and even more fun to personalize your own wedding. If you're having an outdoor summer wedding, why not go for sundresses for your bridesmaids? Wrap dresses have also recently come into vogue—that way, your bridesmaids can all have the same dress while styling them themselves, adding a personal touch. (There are also great online guides to wrap dresses, which could be another bonding activity for you and your bridesmaids!)


This is also a major concern for most bridesmaids. A girl doesn't want to buy a dress to wear only once unless it's her own wedding dress: keep in mind that your bridesmaids may want to reuse these dresses! Darker dresses in black, gray, forest green, or burgundy complement almost any complexion and can easily be reused for other formal events—and if they are reused, your bridesmaids will always remember that it was your special day they got this dress for!


It's the little things that can make or break an outfit and how your bridesmaids feel about the dresses they're wearing for your big day. Encourage your bridesmaids to wear the jewelry and hairpieces they think will best complement your choice for the wedding, which can bring their own individuality through. Remember to communicate with everyone and get their opinions. More than that, show how much you've appreciated their help throughout this long process—a piece of unifying jewelry as a gift for the entire bridal party will always be appreciated.


Though no one likes to admit it, this is always a major concern among brides and bridesmaids alike. There are all sorts of numbers out there, but communication with your own bridesmaids is key. It may be best to ask directly what your girls would be willing to pay for a bridesmaid dress (for reference, a common figure is between $100 and $300), and if they're not able to pay that, consider paying the difference yourself.

No matter what, as the bride, you've got to make sure you and everyone else is enjoying the big day. And don't be afraid to delegate to your maid of honor! My sister has already given me a few responsibilities—finding the best color for the bridesmaid dresses, for example—which I am honestly happy to perform. Remember that you're not going through this alone; we're all here to celebrate your special day and, most importantly, have fun!

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Real Wedding Design Inspiration: Abbey & Jon's Barn Wedding

Last Saturday, my friend Abbey had a beautiful barn wedding in Deansboro, NY -- a perfect theme for highlighting the lovely Fall season. As a gal with a penchant for art, design, and all things crafted, I was charmed by every last rustic detail that was weaved throughout both the ceremony and reception.

The worn grooves of the wood were elegantly complemented by the warmth of the string lights that draped the high ceilings and the flicker of the candled burlap centerpieces.

During the ceremony, Abbey and her husband (who runs a local community garden) planted a tree to symbolize the significance of their vows. This arboreal touch was carried over into the decor details and wedding favors, where cut branches adorned the tables and everyone took home a tree-growing kit of their own.

The aisle was lined with airy baby’s breath flowers which were scattered throughout the barn, and instead of scattering petals, the flower girl sprinkled the floors with rusty red fall leaves.

Needless to say, the wedding went off without (or should I say with?) a hitch.
Resources & Vendors:
Venue: MKJ Farms
Featured Photography: Morgan Gray and Sarah Elmer