Well. I officially wrapped my summer last week with one of the most soul-enriching vacations I've ever taken. I was in Costa Rica--I learned to surf, hiked a rainforest, crossed some rivers in my shoes, jumped off a waterfall--in general, capped off an incredibly productive summer with a lot of awesomeness. And while this blog is not a platform for all my innermost thoughts about down-time, vacations, and what I learned, it IS one where I can share with you some of my most favorite things. And with all that relaxing in the most laid-back atmosphere ever, I got to ponder them in detail. Now they're not all fashion, so don't get all legalistic on me, but cool stuff? I think so. The following is a round-up of Amber Lehman Styling's Best of Summer 2010.
A. American Eagle denim shirt. I honestly don't know what I would've done without this thing this year. When I went to San Francisco to hang out, it was the layer on top of my tanks on a cool night. When I was in Costa Rica, it covered up my striped tank dress. When I was running around town back in Nashville, the sleeves were rolled up with dark denim shorts and flats. I wore the fire out of it. This particular model was bought on sale earlier in the summer, but the dude one that I linked to would be awesome a little oversized. Oh, and this trend is still HUGE for Fall, so go 'head on and get yourself one.
B. Imperial Light Beer. Not sure if it's my Louisiana heritage coming out in me or what, but I love beer. I really do. And one of my favorite things to do when I'm traveling to other places is try the local beer. When I was in Turkey last summer, we drank Efes, Kenny Chesney video in Jamaica it was Red Stripe Light , and in Costa Rica, well, Imperial Light was the cerveza del dia. I had such a phenomenal time in Imperial country, I have an extra special place in my little beer-lovin' heart for this one.
C. Essie Nail Polish in Mint Candy Apple. I've painted my nails at least once a week this entire summer, and my fave color is by far this lovely, creamy green by Essie. That mani happened to be with my fab intern, Haley, which made it all the more special.
D. Orla Kiely Travel Tote. Obvi, I've done some traveling this summer. My absolute I'm-not-leaving-home-without-it travel essential is my Orla Kiely travel tote I got at Two Elle last year. I love retro patterns, hence, it's the perfect bag for me. I mean, you gotta look cute-ISH in the airport, right? Even if you're wearing a sweat suit, carrying this bag will still help you make the cute cut. Know what else makes it uber-excellent for travel? O.K. does this coated canvas that holds up amidst Lord-knows-what is on those plane floors, and they come with tons of fun pockets for all your gadgets to boot. My bag is no longer being sold, but here's a really cute one for you to drool over.
E. Smashbox Halo Powder. My mom is hooked on QVC. Like, she might need an intervention "hooked." One good thing that comes from this, however, is that she buys me lots of stuff, and I also get her hand-offs. Lucky for me, one of her recent purchases was this amazing powder from Smashbox. I probably haven't worn powder in 10 yrs 'til this. I have always found that powder makes my face look overly matte and cake-y, neither of which are attractive nor practical in 100-degree heat. This is the lightest, glowy in a non-frosty way-est powder ever. And it lasts and lasts and lasts.
F & G. The Black Keys & V V Brown. I spend an inordinate amount of time alone. I told my husband the other day that one of the reasons I listen to sports talk radio all day is that I kinda think of the hosts as my "friends." (Yikes.) I promise I'm not that pathetic, really, but certainly if I weren't constantly excited about new music like these two artists, it'd be a lot worse. I've been loving the sassiness of V V Brown's Travelling Like the Light all summer as well as the soulful, guitar rock of The Black Keys' new album Brothers. I highly recommend both.
H. Lands End Foldover Boyfriend Swimsuit Bottoms. I know! Lands Freaking End. Didn't see that coming, did ya? My friend Caroline brought these with her to Costa Rica, and I was totally jealous the entire time. Bottom line (no pun intended): they hold your junk in. And whether you're on a surfboard getting beaten up by the Pacific or strolling down the beaches of Destin, that's a good thing.
I. Revlon Matte Lipstick in Pink Pout. My spring obsession was with electric bright lipstick colors like Maggie Gylenhaal's Oscar look. For summer, I wore this matte lipstick almost every single day. With my skin vaguely tan, mascara + this perfect pink were all I needed on a day out and about. Tried matte lipstick lately? It's fun, I'll tell ya.
J. Kevin Murphy Texture Spray. Wanna give your hair body and make it hold just about any style? Use this spray before blowdrying. It protects hair from heat and smells yummy too. Awesome.
K. ELLE magazine. I succumbed to a pesky "Insider's only special" mail flyer for Elle a few months ago, and I'm now a subscriber. I must say, it might have become my favorite. After reading an issue, I feel like I've gotten some style advice, but I've really learned something too. Elle always has great book reviews (I love to read), cool essays (again, reading, love it), smart commentary on current social issues, and pretty pictures--yay! It's for the gal who likes a side of knowledge with her fluff.
L. Elise Yetton, Pennyweight. I don't get to read a lot of blogs. In fact, I'm a little overwhelmed by them to be honest. Reading blogs could be a full-time job. Shoot, y'all know I hardly have time to update my own, much less keep up with other people's. This summer, however, I found Elise Yetton's blog Pennyweight because she started following me on Twitter. Truly, it's one of the few blogs that I don't miss in the three minutes per day I get to read them. She's brilliant and so creative on many fronts--AND she's a fellow Nashvillian. Elise owns an exceptional little vintage Etsy store called Troubadour Vintage also, and heaven help us! How cute is she?! You really should add Pennyweight to your Reader. You won't be sorry. It'll be an endless source of inspiration for you.
M. Lancome Anti-Age Flash Bronzer. You know how earlier in this post I talked about being tan-"ish". Well, the "-ish" is totally because of this bronzer. It has the most natural looking tan ever, it doesn't smell all "self-tanner-y", and it has SPF, so it's all you need in the morning. By noon, you'll be looking like Padma Lakshmi.
To make your day even better, here's VV lighting it up on David Letterman last month. Impressed? Happy Day to You! Anyone else out there got some "best of's" you wanna share? Bring 'em on! What was one thing you absolutely could not live without this summer?