the after-workout transformation… in the BIRCHBOX mag!

WH BBX

If #nomakeupselfie is going to be a thing, I think #postrunselfie should also be a thing. Yes, I really snapped that minutes after walking in from my first run in forever.  Like, before I even stretched.  Check out how I went from red and sweaty to happy hour ready over on the Birchbox Magazine!  You can shop my essentials from the post.

xo <3

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and they were all yellow

and they were all yellow

 

It was one of THOSE weekends in San Francisco.  The kind that shocks you, because you became so accustomed to the wind and the fog that you forgot there is a sun and sometimes it shines on this city.  And I, for one am incredibly happy to report that I spent a good portion of the gorgeous weekend outside absorbing some rays (while wearing sunscreen!).  It was such a treat to slip into shorts and espadrilles.  The fact that the sun has continued to grace us with its presence has made it all but impossible to do anything other than stare out the window at work.  Le sigh.  Keep shining!

Photos by Sarah at Her Pursuit of Sunshine

and they were all yellow - 1

and they were all yellow - 3

 

and they were all yellow - 4

 

and they were all yellow - 5

Top: Alice and Olivia (here in white)
Shorts: Gap
Espadrilles: Joan and David (old)
Bag: Isabella Fiore (old)
Earrings: Amrita Singh (old)
Necklace: Kendra Scott (Nordstrom Exclusive)
Lips: Clinique 

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whisk and heels and… BIRCHBOX!

w&h and bbx

oh em GEE!  Today I am super excited to announce that I’ll be guest posting on Birchbox for the entire month of April!  I’ll still have plenty of fresh content for you here, but in addition to this Q&A, I’ll have a few more beauty related posts over there.

Check it out here!

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beige, brights, and blush

brights beige and blush

1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8

Caitlin at A Little Dash of Darling inspired me to look at pink on pink when she posted this gorgeous outfit earlier in the week.  I think the neutral shoes and bag keep my take on the look grounded, but the statement making accessories keep it interesting.  Also obsessing over The Balm’s lip and cheek palette – so many great options.  I have my fingers crossed that I’ll get a sample in my Birchbox!

What are you lusting after today?  Let me know in the comments below!

xox

a

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oatmeal peanut butter chocolate chip cookies

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

aka the b-low cookies.

Why?  Because when you promise cookies in exchange for miracles in your day-job, you deliver.  So when my colleague gave me a miracle that kept a critical project on track, my second response (after “OMG THANK YOUUUU!!!!!” obviously) was, “so what kind of cookies do you want?”  And after deciding upon oatmeal peanut butter chocolate chip, he asked, “so are you going to name these after me on your blog?”  Uh, duh.  So PSA, if you want a recipe named after you, you just have to make some miracles for me.

Sidenote: no, I don’t suck at my job.  Raise your hand if you’ve ever begged a colleague for a miracle because someone else changed something else and forgot to tell you.  If your hand isn’t up, you’re probably the one that changed the thing and forgot to tell someone who has their hand up ;)

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Just saying, this is the kind of bribery I can get behind. (I really hope my boss does not read this and fire me.  Actually, I hope my boss reads this and rewards me for being so resourceful.)

Also, there’s peanut butter AND oats in this recipe, and in my mind that makes these cookies a health food.

oatmeal peanut butter chocolate chip cookies

prep time: 20 minutes

cook time: 15 minutes

yield: appx 48 cookies

ingredients

  • 2 C All purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 C Rolled Oats (not instant)
  • 1 tsp Baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 2 C Light brown sugar
  • 1 C Butter, room temperature
  • 1 C Peanut butter, room temperature
  • 2 Eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 12 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips

instructions

  1. Mise en place, and read this recipe all the way through.
  2. Whisk together the flour, oats, baking soda, and salt until completely combined, and set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (or a large bowl/hand beater set up), cream together the butter, peanut butter, and light brown sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  4. Add in the eggs one at a time, beating until fully combined after each addition.
  5. Add the vanilla and mix to combine.
  6. Add the flour in 3 additions, with the mixer on low until the butter mixture takes in some of the flour, to avoid a big mess.
  7. Add the chocolate chips and mix briefly to distribute. If the chocolate chips are not evenly distributed, give the bowl a few turns with a spatula before scooping.
  8. Use a 1.5 inch disher (cookie scoop) to transfer to a parchment or silpat lined cookie sheet - 9 to a sheet seems to work best. Bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes. The cookies should have just begun to set around the edges.
  9. Remove from oven and let cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.

Notes

If you don't want to bake off all of the cookies at once, use a disher to scoop out all of the dough onto a parchment or silpat lined cookie sheet. Freeze until solid, about 3 hours, then transfer to ziplock bags for longer-term storage. The dough should be viable for up to 2 months.

http://whiskandheels.com/kitchen/oatmeal-peanut-butter-chocolate-chip-cookies

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Happy Eating!

xo,

a

the tools I used are linked below:

studs and lace

studs and lace - 1

studs and lace - 5

studs and lace - 2

studs and lace - 4

studs and lace - 3

studs and lace - 6

It was not pouring rain when I shot this.  If you haven’t guessed by now, I like a little edge with my romantic frills.  The shoes were a more affordable alternate to the Valentino’s I’ve been lusting after forever and the Chanel was a splurge spend because I felt like it ;)

Top: Joie (on sale!)
Skirt: Ark & Co (sold out, see the slider for alternate options)
Shoes: Joan & David via RueLaLa (for a fraction of the price!)
Bag: Chanel (vintage) via RueLaLa
Sunnies: Marc by Marc Jacobs
Lips: Stila

Photos by Sarah at Her Pursuit of Sunshine

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the dirty side of fashion

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The Dirty Side Of Fashion - 5

Let’s talk dirty ;)

While we’re all out enjoying how great we look in our stilettos and sheer blouses, our bodies and clothes are basically at war with one another.  Delicate fabrics and late night sweat sessions on the dance floor are just incompatible.  Ankle straps as skinny as our heels are pretty much a recipe for an ugly blister… I cut my heels up so badly 3 weeks ago (on FLAT sandals!) that I’m still taping over my wounds.  It’s a dangerous world!  Luckily for us, Fashion First Aid offers a variety of products targeted to solve these types of problems.

The Dirty Side Of Fashion - 1

I sampled the purse kit, which includes (1) collar strip (for your hat or collar), (1) pair of garment guards (for any light colored shirt susceptible to pit stains), (1) page of wundercover (beige strips of different sizes to cover your heels or even hide a tattoo), (1) page of quick fix sticks (double sided tape to keep your garments in place), and (1) instant pocket.

I’ve been using the wundercover to protect my heels from more damage after the aforementioned lost battle with some new sandals.  The quick fix sticks have proven to be very handy – I fit a 4 everywhere but my bust, which usually causes an oh-so-classy button gap.  The double sided tape holds my blouses in place and releases easily, without damaging the silk.  I’m saving my instant pocket for the next time I wear a slim dress and just need to hide my keys somewhere!

While the purse kit was great, The Dirty Side of Fashion was actually my favorite product.

The Dirty Side of Fashion - 6

The book has a few samples of products (the Knicker Sticker came in handy last night) as well as information that had me thinking “where has this been all my life?!”  I’ve included my favorite pages below:

The Dirty Side Of Fashion - 2

Zara labels demystified… amirite?

The Dirty Side Of Fashion - 4

I have been over-cleaning my jeans for my entire life, which probably explains why I have to buy new pairs every year.

The Dirty Side Of Fashion - 3

Annnnd apparently I’ve been ironing everything incorrectly for my entire life.  I knew I should have kept asking my mom to do it for me. That pleat tip is going to come in handy.

You’ll have to get your own copy of The Dirty Side of Fashion for more tips and tricks on how to make your pieces last.  It’s also a great way to check out a few products and find which may be the best long term solutions for you.

xo,

a

Thanks to Lexington PR and Fashion First Aid for sponsoring this post.  Opinions are my own.

4 ingredient balsamic vinaigrette

4 ingredient balsamic vinaigrette

4 ingredient balsamic vinaigrette

I heard somewhere that spring is coming, but in California that means it’s 10 degrees warmer and probably raining.  NOT THAT I AM COMPLAINING!  Just highlighting that the poor east-coasters are ready for a major shift in the weather patterns and it kind of means nothing to me.  But still, when spring is coming, regardless of what “spring” means for your geographic location, everyone pretty much panics and freaks out about how a winter of mac and cheese and donuts has affected their bikini bods.  And by everyone I definitely mean myself included.  My bad habits are more along the lines of gummy candies, cookies, and lots of chips… but… you know… same end result.

4 ingredient balsamic vinaigrette

4 ingredient balsamic vinaigrette

Anyway, preparation for bikini season and the crop tops that the fashion industry has dumped on us means some dietary changes for most.  While I can wholeheartedly say that salads are one of my favorite meals, I know that they can be an evil diet food for many, and that dumping way more than one serving of ranch dressing over some iceberg might be the only way you can handle eating a salad for dinner.  Don’t lie, we all do or have done it. The trouble is, bottled dressings usually have tons of sugar, fat, and sodium hidden inside of them.  Don’t those sound like 3 things that aren’t really going to help you feel good in a bathing suit?  I thought so.

4 ingredient balsamic vinaigrette

4 ingredient balsamic vinaigrette

Making your dressing at home can feel super intimidating, but it’s really, really simple.  All you need is a whisk and 5 minutes to pull together a delicious vinaigrette.  Use this recipe as a basic base and adapt away!  Sometimes I go with a sherry or red wine vinegar instead of the balsamic, and add some grated shallot and garlic for a more intense flavor.  Swapping lemon juice for vinegar and adding herbs will help your vinaigrette double as a marinade and/or sauce to serve with your lean meats.  Experiment away until you find your new favorite dressing, and then be super happy that you can pronounce all of the ingredients.  You can still slather your greens with it… I won’t tell ;)

4 ingredient balsamic vinaigrette

ingredients

  • 1/4 C balsamic vinegar
  • 2 TBSP honey
  • 2 TBSP yellow mustard
  • 3/4 C olive oil (the good stuff)
  • salt and pepper to taste

instructions

  1. Mise en place, and read this recipe all the way through.
  2. Combine vinegar, honey, and mustard in a bowl and whisk to combine completely.
  3. Slowly stream in the olive oil, whisking the entire time, until the emulsion forms.
  4. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Enjoy!
http://whiskandheels.com/kitchen/4-ingredient-balsamic-vinaigrette

Let me know what combinations you’ve tried and loved in the comments below!

xo

a

snow leopard

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snow leopard    snow leopard - 2

snow leopard   snow leopard - 4

snow leopard - 6

(let’s just ignore my serious case of BRF in that one.  kthx)

snow leopard - 5

So my mom read my style post last week and said “why didn’t you write anything?  I don’t get it.”  To my mama and anyone else looking for more than a few photos…

I know it’s technically spring, but it’s supposed to rain here this week, and honestly, I’m just not ready to jump into my florals and brights.  I may be the only girl in San Francisco wearing all black throughout spring and summer, but at least I’m marching to the beat of my own drum… right, mom?

sunnies: marc by marc jacobs
bomber: allsaints
top: bailey 44 (similar here)
pants: zara
shoes: nine west
earrings: amrita singh (similar here)
bag: Coach, circa 2005.  (this was my first expensive bag) Similar here and here.

photos by Lina at Cable Car Chic

shop this look (scroll to see all suggestions):

daytime drama with POP beauty

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Daytime Drama with Pop Beauty

Sorry that this isn’t the greatest photo of the makeup!  I took some on my nicer camera, but the sun  was so bright that the color got super washed out, and I couldn’t really fix it in Photoshop.  The iPhone pic doesn’t really do this justice, but I loved the look and was eager to share (I’ve been working late and haven’t been getting home when there’s still enough light to re-shoot!).

I created this look exclusively using shadows from my POP Beauty Bright Up Your Life Palette sample from my March Birchbox (plus my favorite pencil liner and a new mascara gifted to me by Angelina over at Cable Car Chic).  I wanted an eye look that would give me a little bit of edge without feeling like last night’s makeup – and the intense pigments of this palette allowed me to create just that!

To get this look: 

1) Apply a shade slightly lighter than your skin tone over your entire lid.
2) Blend a dark brown or black shade into your crease.  Don’t bring it down too far – you want the darkest shadow to stay in the crease and not creep down to the outer corner of your lid.
3) Smudge an intermediate shade (something between the light and dark color you used) in the outer corner of your lid.  If your dark color feels too dark, blend the intermediate shade over the top of it to help lighten things up.
4) Use a pencil liner on your upper and lower lashes, and then use your finger to smudge it slightly.  I said we were going to get dramatic!
5) Curl those lashes and top with 2 coats of your favorite mascara.
6) Fill your brows and pat the lighter color into your brow bone for an added highlight.
7) Bat those peepers!

I tend to gravitate towards a neutral palette of shadows, but if you’re all about color, I urge you to try your faves using this technique.  I think this would look especially cool with a deep purple in the crease and perhaps some radiant orchid in your outer corner.

If you’re interested, the full contents of my Birchbox are here:

I’d love to see your take on my tutorial!  Tweet or Insta me your looks – @whiskandheels!

xo

a