Nolita has got to be my favorite neighborhood in Manhattan and more specifically Elizabeth Street holds a special place in my heart. My first job in NYC was located on that quaint little street, and I can’t seem to get enough of it. <3 Strolling down the street, there are many fabulous restaurants, Tacombi, BarBossa, Public, Lovely Day, The Butcher’s Daughter, Egg Shop and Black Seed Bagels (to name a few! or all…) Those are actually all amazing restaurants that I frequented often and absolutely love and they’re all in a 3-4 quick city block radius! YAS.
Today I discovered an awesome clothing boutique called Babel Fair. I walked in to explore and find out more. What I loved most about this shop were the finite details and that each item held such importance no matter how large or small. Obviously, there are various clothing boutiques in NYC and in Soho for that matter, but what makes this boutique unique is that many of the designers are LA based or international (Korean & Australian).
There are a variety of chic products in this store, carefully placed trinkets, jewelry, and beauty products on a large table in the center of the room and shelving toward the back. I also liked that the lip balms and beauty products had trial samples available!
How cute are those rings?! Parallel walls have racks of clothing by international designers on either side. Naturally, my eye was drawn to the black, white and pale pink shades.
Sometimes when I walk into boutiques, I feel compelled to shop. At Babel Fair, I was greeted very politely when I walked in and struck up conversation. No pressure, just great vibes. Babel Fair have a great customer loyalty program as well! I ended up purchasing the lip balm in the shape of a skull (photographed below). Black, obviously! 😉 Smells like mint – the pink one was fruity – it was a tough call!
Be sure to stop in to Babel Fair next time you’re on Elizabeth Street in Nolita! I’ll definitely be back in soon!
So I’ve done quite a bit of “how-to’s” on this blog, but this one is quite a bit – well… Different.
I received a message from one of my BFFs about a month ago telling me some big “news.” And NO, that it wasn’t her engagement, that in fact it was the total effing opposite. She was leaving. Picking up her fabulous life and turning it completely upside down. Ending the relationship, leaving her job and leaving her city. I was shocked, yet I knew she knew exactly what she was doing. She’s one of the most intelligent and self-aware people I’ve met in this world. And so strong. Strength I’ve rarely seen before especially in my peers, especially in 20 & 30 something’s.
After thinking about this over and over again, I realized she was doing what many of us find so intimidating and nearly impossible to do. Being afraid of getting our heart broken and even breaking another person’s heart is both frightening and intimidating. Love is such a strong emotion that ending or breaking is not an easy part of it – no matter how well you plan for it. But here she is, a beautiful, awesome, powerful and intelligent girl who loves harder than most I know – doing it to herself.
Breaking her own heart. For the better of her relationship and their lives going forward. Doing it FOR herself. By her own will and merit.
Are you in a relationship or workplace or friendship or anything that you need to step away from?
Find something. Deep within yourself. Find the strength to pick up and release yourself. It doesn’t need to be dramatic. No need for the applause or the social media presence. It doesn’t mean you need to cut all ties or end something in a hurtful way. You can just move on by yourself. Find the way. (Find your true north! #Wanderlust).
Maybe it’s the complete opposite for you – maybe it’s getting back into something. For example: You love doing ActivityX but your current life doesn’t allow for time to do ActivityX. You’ve got to make the time for ActivityX. You be X. Nobody else will do X for you. Nobody else will do shit for you for that matter.It’s you and you. Control is what we’re after here. Set some goals. Create a timeline and move it. Control your own aspirations, your own goals and your own feelings. Take control of yourself and your future, even if you have to break your own heart while doing so.
We just moved in to a new neighborhood in Brooklyn – and so far really loving it. Everyone says Bushwick is “up & coming” which, (for those of you who don’t know) means it used to be very ghetto, has gotten much nicer, but still has a long way to go. I mildly agree but love the character and charm of this very diverse and artsy neighborhood. The streets are spewed with massive pieces of graffiti art on buildings and garages. As I’m obsessed with taking photos of everything, The Bushwick Collective & other nearby pieces will occasionally make an appearance here or on my Snapchat @ashleybyrdy <3
Some of my favorite pieces around the neighborhood…
The last time I purchased a backpack, I was in college, it was from The North Face and I was the coolest kid looked like every other kid on campus. That charcoal & pink backpack traveled throughout Europe and all over the USA with me; I do still love and wear it — but I needed to bring my backpack game to a more chic place.
Enter my BFF, @Kaitmills who sent me a photo of her new Herschel backpack asking if it was “chic enough” to wear to a fashion/hospitality interview in NYC? Le DUH! How fab does she look? After I realized how undeniably cool backpacks are again (from her chic fashion girl selfies below), I decided to go after these new Everlane packs I had been lusting after!
Everlane has evolved into one of my favorite new brands. I read a tag line on The Fader recently about how “Everlane turned hipsters basic,” and I kinda love that because I <3 hipsters and I <3 basics (the clothes, not the persona). As seen in my previous post about their “Everyday Anorak”, Everlane manufactures high quality clothing & accessories at affordable prices. They cut out the middle man and consumers reap the benefits. After weeks of awesome social media hype & presence, Everlane launched these great backpacks. I watched their Snapchat story everyday (blushing) – but you all know I’m obsessed with social media anyway.
Very versatile! I purchased in the larger size, obv because I carry FAR too much (but the mini is awesome too!) in the “Reverse Denim & Black Leather” color.
Love the black leather detailing! This pack has pockets for all things; fits a MacBook, iPhone, side pockets for a water bottle/whatever else you want easy access to, inside pockets, front zipper pocket for small items, etc. Highly recommend this item for back to school or around the city or anywhere your travels take you. Gets endless compliments and “where’d you get that bag?” comments galore!
Wölffer Estate Vineyardrecently launched a luxurious extension of their brand, the Wölffer Kitchen– serving “modern American cuisine with a Mediterranean influence,” basically it’s very wine-friendly food. I love spending days and weekends in Sag Harbor – needless to say, we went back for the Rosé Sangria more than once. I’m actually obsessed with the Rosé Sangria – it is not sweet like most sangria’s, it’s super fresh & just amazing. 🌸👌 See our favorite bartender Michelle for some delicious & unique cocktails! Also highly recommend the Caesar Salad – I know, how boring right? WRONG! It’s different & delicious – the croutons are awesome parts of crunch yet not too hard, dressing is perfect, lettuce is fresh, crisp and buttery.
There is a beautiful mural painted on one of the walls, and the hostess stand is decorated in the beautiful pattern of the “Summer in a Bottle” varieties. There is outdoor seating available in the newly renovated space as well. Perfect for dining or to enjoy cocktails! Don’t worry – despite what they say, the rosé is not going to run out. But just in case – get here soon!
Another highly recommended location, well-done by Wölffer Estate!
Strolling through Southampton last Monday, I came across an interesting and beautifully curated pop-up shop, Cabana Southampton. The “Come Sale Away” sign drew me in….
A line of brightly colored sneakers covered about 15 feet of the front of the store. The dressing rooms were little striped tents that reminded me of mosquito tents for the beach.
Store owner Julie Heller explained that the store is inspired by vintage pieces. There are vintage books, gorgeous artwork, vintage Chanel handbags & jewelry, candles and stationary that are creatively detailed.
Based in NYC as ERA|LUXE, a cult-fave luxury vintage store, Heller decided to bring the shop to where she summer’s in Southampton, NY. The vintage does so well that she wanted to bring in new products from different designer brands that weren’t well represented on the east end of Long Island/Hampton’s.
Everything inside makes everyone that enters want to purchase something – I guarantee there is at least one piece in this store that will “speak to you.” There are TONS of awesome gifts in this shop – things that you’d “never buy for yourself” but you actually will because that’s how fab it is.
The Cabana Southampton Instagram is loaded with beautifully curated photos of products sold in the shop and gorgeous Hampton’s beachfront views – what’s not to love / “like”? The ever popularHASHTAG HAMPTONS gear is placed around the store between books, scented candles & sprays, accessories and perfectly placed artwork/paintings.
They’re staying open until mid-September so I suggest checking it out if you’re on the east end for any of the remaining weeks of summer! There’s an online shop for Cabana Southampton as well so if your weekends are already full of day trips & cocktails for the remainder of the summer, you can still check out all the goods.
Recycling Clothing has been something I’m very interested in lately. I wrote last week or two weeks ago about Poshmark, an app to buy & sell clothing & accessories. Another way to do so is through the recycling program that eco-friendly, yet chic clothing brand, Reformationhas launched.
Scented Candles: LAB: Yuzu Ginger. Found on a counter at a friend’s house and it’s delightful.
Folk Rebellion– a super-cool brand encouraging people to unplug and live a device-free life. Portions of their proceeds are donated to the Children & Nature Network. Included in with the awesome tank I purchased, quoting, “Let’s Wander Where the Wifi is Weak” was a small green strawberry box, which later became the BEST part of my purchase. Included with the box were instructions to use…
Up-cycle the box to hold your devices and the devices of your friends and family. The idea is to put your devices into the box so you aren’t so wrapped up in them during dinner, or a movie/tv, or while just hanging out together. Enjoy the time being together instead of being glued to your phone and other devices.
Put a masque on my hair last night before going to bed – it’s basically a thick conditioner and I didn’t wash it out – so yes it gives a little bit of a greasy feeling before bed – but WHATEVER. Caked it on there – slept – woke up in the morning & did not shower until this evening. Hair feels phenomenal. Try it – highly recommend this type because I LOVE the way Oribe smells.
Lastly, a little bit of #INSPO to help get you through whatever it may be that you’re going through.