FRIDAY Q&A: MOVING BACK TO CONNECTICUT, INVESTING IN QUALITY PIECES WHILE RENTING, AND WHAT I’M MOST EXCITED FOR IN 2019

Happy Friday! I’m in Bluffton, South Carolina, this weekend for a press trip with the Montage Palmetto Bluff. I’ve barely been here for 24 hours but I have to say it’s pretty magical here. A bunch of you have DMed me since I posted on Instagram (I’ve been trying to post more stories so come say hi!) and I can see why you all love it so much! Today’s itinerary includes horseback riding and s’mores and I can’t decide which one I’m more excited about. 🙂 I wish Will were here but I’m reveling in the chance to sleep in the middle of the bed for once haha. I hope you all have a great weekend!

design darling friday q&a

1. Did you always know you wanted to return to Connecticut / the area where you grew up?

No actually! After college I lived in San Francisco, New York, and Dallas before moving back to Connecticut at 27. After a couple years of bad homesickness, I realized that my top priority was to live close to my family again. Now my parents are ten minutes away, my brother and sister live in New York, and my youngest brother will hopefully be heading back this way after he graduates this spring! I’m so glad I left the area and experienced a few different cities as it made me appreciate coming back home so much more.

2. Do you have any ideas for what to wear while traveling from a cold place to a warm place? My husband and I will be going to the Caribbean for our honeymoon and I don’t want to overpack!

Congratulations! My go-to travel outfit is my Barbour jacket, cashmere wrap, sweater or sweatshirt, black leggings, and sneakers. I’m usually freezing on planes so I need lots of comfy layers and I’m almost always happy to have a sweater on hand once I get to a warm weather destination and it cools down at night. You can always go to and from the airport in your winter coat and just fold it in your carry-on once you arrive!

3. I’m curious, do you recommend the Yogalicious leggings that you recently mentioned ordering?

Yes! They’re affordable, super soft, and I like the high waist, but they’re pretty long on me so they bunch at the ankles (I’m 5’1″). If you’re looking for a cropped pair that seriously sucks you in, I love this even more affordable pair, but for that price you really can’t go wrong with either option.

4. How is training at Countdown going? Would you recommend it?

I’ve only done three sessions but I’m really liking it so far! (For those of you not following on Instagram, Countdown is a local personal training gym where you do just one thirty-minute session per week!) I was a little skeptical at first (thirty minutes a week seems like so little!) but I have girlfriends who’ve seen amazing results and just had to give it a shot. I have to say it is way harder than I was expecting but in the best way — I never knew thirty minutes could feel so long or so painful. 😂I do think I could eventually layer in another workout or two each week, but I just bought a Countdown package that will last me the next six months and I’m feeling really optimistic about having a new routine in place. I’ll keep you posted!

5. What’s your favorite thing about living in New England?

Living close to my family, the beach, and the city. At this point in my life I can’t imagine living anywhere else!

6. What are you most excited about in 2019?

Travel! Will and I sat down together when we got back from New Year’s in California and made a list of all the trips we want to take this year and it got me so excited for the next twelve months! Our first big trip will be to Australia in March and all your suggestions on this post have me counting down the days! Also my youngest brother Camden and I are getting ready to launch a new side project together that we’re both really excited about… I’ll be announcing it on the blog the week after next!

7. How would you describe your interior design style? I’ve gotten so many good ideas from watching your decorate your space!

That makes me so happy! Decorating brings me so much joy and I can’t wait to have a house of our own where I can do more permanent projects like wallpapering, gardening, etc. (Does anyone remember the wallpapered powder room I did when we owned our townhouse in Dallas?) I would describe my style as classic and coastal, with lots of clean lines and plenty of blue and white!

8. I’ve looked everywhere trying to track down your wedding shoes and can’t find them available anywhere! Do you have any recommendations for similar pairs?

I wish they would bring them back because I get this question at least once a week! This pair is the most similar I’ve found but I don’t love them quite as much as I loved mine (I know that’s not very helpful!). These and these are heeled sandals with a similar tie and these and these are both white satin with a bow detail. Honestly if I were choosing from what’s readily available now, I’d probably forgo all the above and do something like these, thesethese, but you could also look into having  a white satin ribbon sewn onto a pair like this if you’re set on that one look. P.S. You can always browse more ideas for what to wear to wedding events in the bridal favorites on my shop page!

9. What is your philosophy on investing in quality pieces when decorating a rental unit?

As long as it’s something you know you’ll be able to bring to your next home, I say go for it! Renting a house or an apartment is no reason not to invest in quality pieces like a headboard, a dresser, a desk, etc. that will work in a less temporary space down the road. I try to avoid spending a ton of money on window treatments or super specific rug sizes that may not work in our next house, but in general it’s important to me to make a house feel like a home whether we plan to be there for one year or several. 

10. Any ideas on where to find unique bridesmaids dresses?

This is a tough one! I found mine at A Little Something White in Darien, CT (you can read about the experience here!) but it was definitely an overwhelming process up until then! Personally I would forgo the specifically branded bridesmaids’ stores and just look on your everyday go-to retailers for cocktail or formal dresses that fall within your price range. Bloomingdales, J.Crew, and Nordstrom all have beautiful options — I love the look of thisthis, this, and this. I’ve also heard of brides using Rent The Runway as a cost-effective way of getting everyone in the same dress — I think this, this, this, this, and this could all be great options!

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  1. Omg!! You are going to Australia!! You will absolutely love it. I studied abroad in Sydney and that’s how I met my husband. Make sure to go to Bondi beach and do the Bondi to Cogee walk, it’s jaw droppingly beautiful. Enjoy ☺️