My Summer Uniform — White Dress, Jean Jacket and Jack Rogers — in Carl Schurz Park

English Factory Dress, Levi's Jean Jacket, J.Crew Signet Bag in Carl Schurz Park // Pearl Girl

Dress (Sold out — love this one, this one and this one!) //
Jean Jacket //
Jack Rogers //
Bag //

If the cherry blossoms and the long hair haven’t tipped you off, these photos are old. We took them in April, I completely forgot about them, and went along posting my post-haircut photos. But then I found these on my hard drive, remembered how much I liked this outfit, and here we are. (And y’all, these make me miss my long hair so much! How long until it grows back?)

Natalie and I shot these photos in Carl Schurz Park back in April, when the cherry blossoms were in full bloom. It was so, so pretty. I love summer, but there’s something special about spring with all the flowers, especially after a cold NYC winter.

English Factory Dress, Levi's Jean Jacket, J.Crew Signet Bag in Carl Schurz Park // Pearl Girl English Factory Dress, Levi's Jean Jacket, J.Crew Signet Bag in Carl Schurz Park // Pearl Girl English Factory Dress, Levi's Jean Jacket, J.Crew Signet Bag in Carl Schurz Park // Pearl Girl

Central Park gets the vast majority of the attention when it comes to NYC parks, for obvious reasons. It’s huge, it’s full of landmarks, it’s huge and pretty easy to get to. And while I’m definitely a Central Park regular (I have the walk from the Plaza/59th street up to the Met practically memorized) it’s not the only green space worth visiting in the city. Carl Schurz Park is on the other end of the Upper East Side (the east side!) and is another great spot — and also where Natalie and I shot these photos! You get there by either walking all the way east on the UES, or walking up the East River from downtown (which is such a nice walk!)

English Factory Dress, Levi's Jean Jacket, J.Crew Signet Bag in Carl Schurz Park // Pearl Girl

English Factory Dress, Levi's Jean Jacket, J.Crew Signet Bag in Carl Schurz Park // Pearl Girl

English Factory Dress, Levi's Jean Jacket, J.Crew Signet Bag in Carl Schurz Park // Pearl Girl

Getting a little grass-and-trees time in every once in a while has become pretty important to me over my past three (!!!) years of living in NYC. I grew up in the suburbs and went to school upstate, so having non-urban outdoor space was always a given. I’m not even a huge outdoors person, but sometimes in NYC, it’s just so, so necessary. It’s part of the reason I love escaping to Mystic when I can! Usually I’m in NYC, so a park will have to do when I can’t get the full great outdoors experience.

My absolute favorite is Washington Square Park — I lived right on this one during my first summer interning in New York, and it was seriously the most amazing summer of my life, with a location that couldn’t be beat. It’s the site of the famous arch (which sort of looks like the Arc de Triomphe!) and there’s a fountain at the center. Plus, the park right near the West Village, so there’s tons of great restaurants and shops a quick walk away. It’s not huge, but I definitely have a sentimental connection to it, which makes for any lacking in size.

I work right down near Battery Park, which isn’t really a park with green space, but is gorgeous. It’s along the water downtown, with lots of sidewalk space (and benches) along the Hudson River. Check out this one at sunset, and then go grab drinks at Le District (the French version of Eataly!) afterwards. They have a great food menu, too, so you could turn your trip downtown into dinner, too.

If you want to “get away” without the hassle of trekking out to Long Island or up to Connecticut, you can hop on the Governors Island ferry, which takes about 15 minutes. It’s a completely green space, with some adorable vintage-esque houses, too. In the summer of 2013, there was a French-themed carnival on the island, which was so much fun to visit. I haven’t been back since then, and I really should go. Not only is it less touristy than the other parks, you get gorgeous views of downtown Manhattan on your way back.

 

English Factory Dress, Levi's Jean Jacket, J.Crew Signet Bag in Carl Schurz Park // Pearl Girl

English Factory Dress, Levi's Jean Jacket, J.Crew Signet Bag in Carl Schurz Park // Pearl Girl

And a few words on my outfit: I ordered this dress spontaneously when it was on sale for $20 back in March. At first I didn’t love it, but it was final sale, so I was stuck. (And it was $20, so NBD.) But after wearing it on my trip to LA, it started to grow on me. And honestly, it wasn’t until seeing these photos that I really started to love it! Y’all have heard me wax poetic about little white dresses before, they’re my favorite thing to wear in the summer, and this is a cute — but casual — one for summer nights. I’m definitely packing it for my trip home next week! Coupled with my jean jacket and this go-to bag, this outfit really is my summer uniform.

Shop more of my favorite white dresses:

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A Day Trip to Philadelphia

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Travel Guide and Photo Diary // Pearl Girl

I always start my weekends with the best of intentions to do a ton of work on the blog and write multiple posts. And sometimes I do, and it’s great, and I feel so productive! But sometimes, Sunday night rolls around, it’s 9 p.m. and BAM I don’t have lunch prepared for the week, I haven’t done a blog post, and my room is a mess. This past weekend was one of those weekends. It got weirdly busy, and I pretty much got nothing done. And because of photo issues, getting an outfit post up today just wasn’t happening. So instead, I’m doing a look back at my ten hours in Philly last weekend!

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Travel Guide and Photo Diary // Pearl Girl

One of my good friends from college moved to Philadelphia last fall and we’ve been meaning to visit every since. It’s such a quick trip from NYC, and I’ve never been inside Philadelphia proper (I have been to the suburban Philly area, back in college.) And with a limited number of summer weekends available, we decided to do a day trip last weekend.

We arrived at about 10 a.m., after catching a 8 a.m. Greyhound from the Port Authority. (Yuck.) The Greyhound station was right near Reading Terminal Market, so we walked around for a bit and I ate a Philly pretzel. (Very, very tasty!) We then walked over to our brunch locale, Continental Midtown, which took us through Rittenhouse Square.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Travel Guide and Photo Diary // Pearl Girl

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Travel Guide and Photo Diary // Pearl Girl

I didn’t take any photos of our brunch (bad blogger!), which you’ll see is a recurring theme throughout this post. It was, however, delicious. We all started with London Iced Teas, which tasted sort of like a Pimms, one of my favorite across the pond drinks. The real highlight of the meal, however, was the French onion soup dumplings. So cheesy, so good! The vibe there was really cool, too, with hanging cage chairs and a sort of retro-diner feel.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Travel Guide and Photo Diary // Pearl Girl

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Travel Guide and Photo Diary // Pearl Girl

We walked around Center City after that, and did a little shopping. We popped into Jack Wills, which always has the best gallery wall. Seriously, it’s insane! And all the posters are British-themed, too, so obviously, I love them.

Afterwards, we hopped in an Uber and headed over to the Liberty Bell. It was the big sight all of us out-of-towners wanted to see while we were there, and while I can’t say it was thrilling (after all, it is just a bell) it was still cool to see + interesting to read about the history of it, which I didn’t really know anything about. We had to wait in a bit of a line to get in, but nothing crazy! I’d say we were in the building within 15 minutes.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Travel Guide and Photo Diary // Pearl Girl

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Travel Guide and Photo Diary // Pearl Girl

It was really hot, so we were all ready to relax and sit down for a bit after seeing the bell. My friend directed us to Independence Beer Garden, which was right across the way from the Liberty Bell. This space is huge + with good snacks and drinks. There’s also a happy hour with cheaper prices! We hung out here for a while, and I took 30 minutes to call my dad (it was Father’s Day!). Luckily, too, it was covered, because it started pouring while we were there!

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Travel Guide and Photo Diary // Pearl Girl

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Travel Guide and Photo Diary // Pearl Girl

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Travel Guide and Photo Diary // Pearl Girl
Top // Shorts // Bag // Shoes

I knew I wanted to see Elfreth’s Alley (and let’s face it, take a few pictures, because it’s adorable!). It’s the oldest residential street in the U.S., and reminded me a bit of Acorn Street in Boston. We walked down the street and snapped a couple of photos. The houses are so cute, but I don’t actually think I’d want to live there — too many tourists!

Our last stop? Cheesesteaks! You can’t go to Philly without getting one. We Ubered down to South Philly, where my roommate Taylor and I split a cheesesteak wit (with onions, in non-Philly speak) and cheese whiz. Sounds a little gross, but it was so tasty!

And then we Ubered back to the bus station to catch the 8 p.m. back to NYC! It was an exhausting day, but a fun one with good friends. I definitely need to plan another trip to Philly to see the Rocky steps, explore the museums and more neighborhoods, and eat another cheesesteak. #Truth.

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Life + Links

Reading and Shopping Recommendations, Philadelphia Photos
A snap from my day in Philly last week.

Hi friends, how was your week? Mine was just the right amount of busy. I went to a really fun event at Murray’s Cheese in the West Village on Tuesday, where I made a mozzarella ball (it was so good — made a grilled cheese with it on Thursday!) and ate a lot of cheese. Highly recommend the cheese-making classes there if you’re a cheese fan (and I mean, who isn’t?) Wednesday I caught up with friends over dinner at Salvation Burger in their courtyard. It’s a cute outdoor space that isn’t on the street, if you’re into that! Thursday was a birthday celebration and my first kickball game of the season! I did a league last summer with some friends and most of our team is back this year.

I was honestly pretty tired by Friday, so Natalie and I just went to the movies and saw The Beguiled, the new Sofia Coppola movie. I had a few issues with it, but liked it overall if you’re thinking about seeing it yourself!

Nothing huge on the agenda this weekend — excited I’m staying in the city for a full weekend, because next week is back to travel! I leave on Sunday for eight full days in Chicago and I couldn’t be more excited.

Hope you have a lovely one, whatever you have planned!

What I’m Reading

Would die to buy something from Audrey Hepburn’s personal collection. The auction is at Christie’s!

Yum, yum, boozy lemonade recipes. (Has anyone else had Fishers Island Lemonade? My fave!)

Mackenzie’s family’s Nantucket story is incredible. How cool to have a place that means so much to your family!

A lament at the non-evolution of women’s clothes. 

Hallie’s weight loss story is relatable and inspiring.

Meal prep tips that don’t involve making everything on Sunday (which is totally what I do!)

Tons of Fourth of July outfit suggestions from Carly.

Love Jessica’s Paris Guide. One of my favorite cities!

What I’m Shopping

Does anyone have any affordable monitor recommendations? I think I’m going to buy one!

This white off-the-shoulder linen dress looks so easy and comfy for summer.

Everlane has been killing it lately. Love this mismatched stripe dress (it’s $35!)

Love this eyelet maxi.

I think I included these sandals last week, but I’m doing it again, because you need them!

These slides are so cute, too!

What I’m Writing

A recap of my trip to Charleston with lots of photos.

A new outfit at Ocean House in Watch Hill, Rhode Island.

The weirdest hats at Royal Ascot.

A chat with Amanda Stanton of Bachelor in Paradise.

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Yellow Sundress at Ocean House in Watch Hill, Rhode Island

ASOS Drop Waist Sundress and Pom Pom Sandals at Ocean House in Rhode Island // Pearl Girl

Yellow Drop Waist Sundress //
Pom Pom Sandals //
Straw Crossbody Bag (Old from Primark — love this one and this one!) //
Navy Blazer //
Turquoise Mirrored Sunglasses (Old from a trip to Hong Kong — similar linked!) //

A few times every summer, I head up to Mystic, Connecticut, where my roommate’s family has a house. I’ve been visiting since 2012 (my current roommate was my freshman year roommate in college, so it’s been a while!) and in that time, it’s become one of my favorite escapes.

There are some places that just make you feel at peace. My hometown is one, and in my adult life, Mystic has been another. My roommate’s family’s house sits right on the Connecticut River, and in the morning, when the sun is shining and it’s perfectly quiet … it’s honest to god bliss. (Not to mention suburban amenities like big grocery stores and Target are quick drive away — as are our favorite lobster rolls!)

But one of my other favorite things about Mystic is its proximity to other locations! It’s super close to Rhode Island, particularly, the town of Watch Hill, where T-Swift has a house (and hosts her infamous Fourth of July parties.) We always spend one day relaxing on the dock, and try to spend another out and about in the surrounding coastal area.

ASOS Drop Waist Sundress and Pom Pom Sandals at Ocean House Rhode Island // Pearl Girl

ASOS Drop Waist Sundress and Pom Pom Sandals at Ocean House Rhode Island // Pearl Girl

ASOS Drop Waist Sundress and Pom Pom Sandals at Ocean House Rhode Island // Pearl Girl

Over Memorial Day weekend, we made the quick trip to Watch Hill for drinks at Ocean House, a gorgeous hotel in the town. The property is a massive yellow building, so I figured this yellow sundress was a perfect fit. At $35, it’s a crazy good deal, and a fun but classic way to incorporate one of my favorite colors (that I don’t wear nearly enough of!) into my wardrobe.

We were hoping to try Ocean House’s new Veuve Cliquot pop-up bar, but the space was full when we arrived and they weren’t taking a wait list (nor could we wait in the space for a table?) It was a little disorganized, to tell you the truth, but I’ll chalk that up to it being the first real busy weekend of the summer.

ASOS Drop Waist Sundress and Pom Pom Sandals at Ocean House Rhode Island // Pearl Girl

ASOS Drop Waist Sundress and Pom Pom Sandals at Ocean House Rhode Island // Pearl Girl

ASOS Drop Waist Sundress and Pom Pom Sandals at Ocean House Rhode Island // Pearl Girl

We got drinks on the patio instead, which was just as picturesque. I’d love to stay at the hotel one day, too — but maybe when it’s a little warmer (and sunnier!) outside. Also, word to the wise: Food is pretty pricey at Ocean House. We opted to grab lunch elsewhere, at the Cooked Goose, in Westerly, which is just 10 minute drive away.

ASOS Drop Waist Sundress and Pom Pom Sandals at Ocean House Rhode Island // Pearl Girl

ASOS Drop Waist Sundress and Pom Pom Sandals at Ocean House Rhode Island // Pearl Girl

ASOS Drop Waist Sundress and Pom Pom Sandals at Ocean House Rhode Island // Pearl Girl

A few of my other favorite things to do during long weekends in Mystic? We always make time for lobster rolls at the Daniel Packer Inne (you can get hot or cold, we prefer the hot!). drinks at Red 36, plenty of Fisher’s Island Lemonade on the dock, and obviously, a trip to Target — and the outlets if we can squeeze it in! (Seriously, I go nuts at the Target out there!) We also went to Chili’s for dinner over MDW, because sometimes, you just need to embrace your inner suburbanite.

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Charleston, South Carolina Travel Diary

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

My mom and I had been talking about doing a Charleston trip for months. We both love to travel, and the city seemed like the perfect long weekend destination (it was.) She comes to visit me in NYC once or twice a year, and she was planning to come to visit me in May, with talks of a Charleston trip put off until the fall. But when I was thinking about the fall, it just seemed so busy. We have a really big family trip coming up in December, and I might be planning another big trip before then — after last fall, where I was gone nearly every weekend, I knew I didn’t want to do that again. So after I saw Sunday In The Park With George (which was so, so good!), I called my mom right outside the theater (she had just purchased her NYC flights, so I knew we were operating on a limited time schedule for a refund!) and suggested we do Charleston that weekend instead. She agreed it was a great idea, and I woke up to her itinerary forwarded to my inbox.

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

As cliche as it sounds, the city was everything I expected and more: So, so cute and charming. The colored houses were so picturesque, the food was so good. Plus, everything is better when you’re surrounded by palm (or palmetto) trees. I see why everyone is so obsessed. It’s not a go-go-go city with a million museums to visit, which sometimes, is nice when you travel. We had a really relaxing but still packed stay in Charleston, which is the best kind of long weekend, in my opinion!

I’m going to break this down a la my Barcelona post, with sections on what we did, what we ate, and where we stayed below!

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

Where We Ate

I thought a lot about what to eat while we were in Charleston. Like, a lot, a lot, a lot. Unfortunately, it was also the College of Charleston graduation weekend, so making reservations was tough. Plus, it was simply impossible to hit every restaurant I wanted to. Next on my list? Poogie’s Porch, Xiao Bao Biscuit and 167 Raw. But I loved pretty much every place we went.

Charleston Grill
This one we ended up going to because we could get a last minute reservation on Saturday night, but it was a great option. It’s definitely a classic grill — very nice, white tablecloths, elaborate menu, that sort of thing. To be frank, I’d never go to this sort of place if I was picking up my own tab (thanks, Mom!) so it was a fun switch from my normal setting.

Darling Oyster Bar
Honestly, this was my least favorite meal of our trip. I had an oyster appetizer dish that was just not good — it was heated and prepared with a sauce neither my mom or I enjoyed (and my mom likes everything.) I had a poke dish for dinner which was tasty, but a little small. My mom loved her food though, so I think this is more on me than the actual restaurant. The place itself is super cute!

Leon’s Oyster Shop
This was our first meal in Charleston, and it was the perfect place to start! It’s classic Southern food: char-grilled oysters, one of the best dishes I tried in New Orleans, fried chicken, etc. It’s a bit fur

Husk
This was my favorite meal we had in Charleston. It’s notoriously tough to get into, but we went right when they opened on Sunday for brunch, and managed to get a seat after a 20 minute wait. The food was so, so good. If I went back, I think I’d want to go for dinner to try that menu, but I highly recommend brunch! I had

Magnolia’s 
Another upscale Southern spot, we ended up going here because Xiao Bao Biscuit was closed and the wait at 167 Raw was insane. I had a caesar salad with fried shrimp to have a (bit) of a detox

Callie’s Little Hot Biscuits
A quick place to stop for your biscuit fix. They sell sandwiches or just little biscuits in a few flavors. Right on King Street, so an easy spot to hit. However, there’s limited seating, so maybe best to grab for later.

Sugar Bakeshop
I’m something of a cupcake connoisseur, and I loved these. The whole shop smells like baked good, I seriously would buy a candle with the Sugar Bakeshop scent if I could. I had the strawberry flavor and it was divine.

The Daily
We just stopped here for coffee, but the setup was cute and they have a nice array of smoothies + other quick breakfast spots.

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

What We Did

We arrived late on Friday, so we just took an Uber to our hotel (the King’s Courtyard Inn — more on that below!) and went to bed. Saturday was a bit rainy, but started out overcast so we walked all the way to Leon’s, which is a bit further down King Street. After lunch, we walked back down King Street, but this time, stopped in all the stores along the way. My favorite was Skinny Dip, which has a ton of cute and preppy brands, like Sail to Sable and Margaux. There’s also a coffee shop upstairs if you need somewhere to rest your feet for a bit! I also liked Willy Jay’s, which was a bit more affordable. I picked up a super cute off-the-shoulder top there, which I wore in this post. Hampden Clothing also has a gorgeous array of designer items, but most were way out of my price range! Still fun to stop in and dream, though!

After successfully avoiding the rain while walking down King Street, we took a break back at the hotel before heading over to the Calhoun Mansion for a tour. (At this point, it was pouring, so we Ubered.) The tour for the mansion was about 40 minutes. It’s not super historical, but it was a really cool space. The house is crammed with artwork, antiques and artifacts. Honestly, seeing all the stuff and how they manage to fit it into this house was really cool! If we had more time I’d have liked to have seen a home that was a bit more historical, but this was a good one to pop into it.

Dinner afterwards was at Charleston Grill. At that point, the weather had cleared up so we went and got ice cream sandwiches afterwards at a spot on King Street. I don’t remember what it was called, but it was on the east side of the street, past the big park, so a little further north.

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

Sunday — and Mother’s Day! — the weather was much nicer. We started with Mother’s Day brunch at Husk, which as I said earlier, was delicious. We then headed down to Rainbow Row and the South of Broad, walking around and snapping photos. Of course, we also walked down to the Battery, but didn’t stay nearly as long as I’d have liked because we both forgot sunscreen. (Yes, my mom is as pale as I am, so this was especially stupid.)

My mom really wanted to see the Ravenel Bridge, so we walked up and over to the Water Taxi, which will take you over to Fort Sumter and Sullivan’s Island. We ended up just taking the taxi around the entire route, which was honestly a pretty way to see the bridge and enjoy some time on the water.

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

Outfit details in this post

Monday was our last day, but I started out early with a trip to Callie’s Little Hot Biscuit and then Sugar Bakeshop (yes, I felt like I was going to explode afterwards.) This day was honestly pretty low-key. We explored more of the South of Broad area, walked over to the Waterfront Park and saw the famous pineapple fountain. We also popped into the City Market in the center of town, where my mom bought a wall hanging for my grandma (that she unfortunately ended up leaving in the cab or at the airport! If you know my mom, you’ll know this is classic. (She’d agree!)

We then went on a carriage tour of the city, something I had seen recommended. We did it with Palmetto Carriage Works, and our guide was great! It’s an interesting way to learn more about the history of the city while getting a peek at all the amazing architecture. I also adore horses — I used to ride every summer at camp, and wish it was easier to do so in the city — so any activity that brings a horse into my day is welcome!

It was so hot, so some time in the AC was welcome, and we had a long lunch at Magnolia’s. The rest of the trip was honestly stressful, having to figure out my flight situation after I was hit with a massive delay (and eventual cancellation!) but it all worked out, thankfully!

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

Where We Stayed

We stayed at the King’s Courtyard Inn, right on King Street, and I could not recommend it more. The prices were pretty reasonable compared to other Charleston hotels I looked at, and the location was incredible. Smack in the middle of King Street, right near Queen Street (and Husk!), nestled in between the shopping and the South of Broad neighborhood. If it wasn’t for the rain, we would have barely used Uber the whole weekend. The rooms are spacious (and provide an iron, bless!) and there’s a super cute courtyard (naturally) at the center of the hotel. Every night around 5, they provide complimentary wine and snacks served in the courtyard, too!

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

I know it’s so grainy, but I liked the photo otherwise! Outfit details here. Also I miss my long hair, WAH.

Charleston, South Carolina Travel Guide, What to Do in Charleston South Carolina // Pearl Girl

Charleston really is the perfect weekend getaway, and I’m so glad I got to spend Mother’s Day with my wonderful mom — and in this pretty city! Let me know if you have any questions, or any spots to add to my next trip — because I already know I’ll need to plan another one (dreaming about those biscuits!).

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