2015. best. nine.

For more snapshots like these, you can follow me on Instagram at @a_wilmer.
Before we officially leave 2015 behind (crazy, I know!), I wanted to share my #2015bestnine. (If you haven't already, check out this website that will generate your most liked Instagram posts from the past year.) No surprise, outfit snapshots dominated my Insta feed along with my very own pint-sized Christmas tree, which I'm still loving. 

Speaking of personal style: There's no question that my J.Crew Factory field jacket was my go-to layering piece in 2015. I wore it with literally everything... and still can't get enough of it. (Sounds like an excuse to invest in another one, right?!). This year also marked a more minimalist + streamlined aesthetic for me. I was all about stripes, simplicity and flats (lots of ballet flats). Oh, and, we can't forget about my favorite Industry Standard jeans, which I already know will be in constant rotation in the new year.  

Thanks for reading + cheers to a new year,

nyc. holiday. recap.

Because I'm so NOT ready to leave Christmas behind just yet (is it really over?!), I've rounded up some photos that I took during a recent trip to NYC. Speaking of which, it's true what they say: No one does the holidays like the Big Apple. Just when you thought that the the city couldn't get any more magical, it totally does. From the holiday markets and stunning window displays to festive decorations around every corner, it's safe to say that I came home in a holidaze. I especially lucked out with the unseasonably warm weather, which made roaming the city even more enjoyable. Scroll down for some of my favorite snapshots (read: photo overload) that best capture the city's holiday charm.

C'ville --> NYC via Amtrak.
THIS view. The #NewWhitney has easily become one of my top favorite museums in NYC.
Checking out Frank Stella: A Retrospective.  
Holiday cheer wherever you go... Can you believe that I went sans tights during December in NYC?!
Run, run as fast as you can... A close-up of one of Lord & Taylor's holiday windows.
Marimekko, it's always a pleasure.
But seriously, when can I move in? 
New pizza spot? Check. For pizza by the slice, Joe's Pizza is the place to go.
SoHo afternoons + architecture around every corner. You know that you're a tourist when you can't stop looking up.
Two words: Holiday. Markets. I had so much fun browsing the holiday vendors for unique trinkets and local goods while snatching up the occasional molasses cookie.
DO make a pitstop at every holiday market that you stumble upon.
Hey there, Charlie Brown, Sally + Franklin... The Peanuts gang took over Macy's and it was basically the cutest thing ever.
A Charlie Brown Christmas comes to life.
I can't even. Macy's seriously outdid themselves this year.
Strolling along Fifth Avenue at night, and naturally, I had to snap a photo of Henri Bendel's festive window display.
Snapped along the edge of Central Park. I'm pretty sure there's nothing better than quiet NYC mornings.
NYC's equivalent of decking the halls in style... as seen at Columbus Circle.
Christmas scene at Bryant Park. Not photographed: Ice skating + a scrumptious waffle from Wafels & Dinges.
A peek inside Henri Bendel during the daytime.
Rockefeller Center and the Christmas tree of all Christmas trees.
Unintentional photobomber in the background, but hey, here's a cute snapshot of my #OOTD.
I think it's safe to say that an annual trip during the holidays to NYC is definitely going to become a new tradition of mine. I quite honestly couldn't have asked for a better Christmas present! Stay tuned for a roundup of photos from my evening at the Whitney Museum — I decided to write up a separate post for that since this one's already super long.

What are your favorite things to do in NYC during the holidays? Leave a comment below!


merry. merry.

Merry, merry! I hope that everyone had a joyous holiday season filled with good company + plenty of sugar cookies to go around. While I continue to take a brief "pause" from the blogging world, I'll def be back before the new year with fresh content and a fun recap from my NYC trip. In the meantime, you can stay in the loop by following me on Instagram (@a_wilmer) for fun holiday snapshots and the occasional ice cream cone (or two!). 

'tis the season,


seven. for. sunday.

All photographs featured above are courtesy of the corresponding sources as cited below.
Hey there! Happy weekend! It's been a while since I've done a "five. for. friday." post, so I'm doing a Sunday edition. I've rounded up some of my favorite links (and gift guides that I've put together for Brit + Co), for your reading pleasure below. If you're currently in the midst of studying for your finals (BTW, good luck!) here's an excuse to take a study break + procrastinate for a few.

1. Sugared & Spiced: The Making of Our Holiday 2015 Windows (Anthropologie) // OMG, Anthro's window displays are extra on-point this holiday season. If you've ever wondered how much work is actually put into designing a holiday window, check out this video posted on Anthro's blog that shows a behind-the-scenes look at the process. Hint, hint: Epic gingerbread houses may or may not be involved.
2. 17 Unique Gift Ideas for People Who Are Always Cold (Brit + Co) // It's true. We all have at least one eskimo in our life (or perhaps it's even you!) who's always cold. When a Snuggie doesn't cut it, check out these 17 gifts that will keep the cold temps at bay.
3. MR's Guide to the Best Cookie (Man Repeller) // Heading to NYC for the holidays? Check out this guide to the best cookies in the Big Apple. I'll take one sugar cookie to go, please :)
4. 66 Gift Ideas for Every Style-Obsessed Person in Your Life (Brit + Co) // From the girly girl to the sporty sister to the #girlboss on your Christmas shopping list, it's all here, neatly organized by personality type. A few of my favorites include The Atelier "Icon Tote," the Fantastic Cities coloring book + the bkr Juliet 1 Liter water bottle.   
5. At Home With Nicole Najafi of Industry Standard (domino) // Can you say apartment goals? While's it's no secret that I love Industry Standard jeans, I'm crushing hard over founder, Nicole Najafi's, swoon-inducing LES apartment in NYC. When can I move in... ?    
6. 16 Sparkly Gift Ideas That Aren't Jewelry (Brit + Co) // Chock-full of — you guessed it — sparkly things, this is the gift guide to consult for the BFF who considers glitter to be a neutral. Don't we all?!
7. Download Now: 8 Festive Wallpapers to Holiday Up Your Desktop and Smartphone (Brit + Co) // The Brit + Co graphic design team put together eight super festive wallpapers (for your desktop computer, laptop, iPhone + various devices), so that you can gear up for the holidays in style. I've already DLed the "Fa-La-La" background for my MacBook (see below) and I'm this close to downloading the "Winter Trees" wallpaper for my iPhone. Which seasonal design is your fave?

What piqued your interest this week? Feel free to share a link to your weekly roundup or leave a comment below!


a. denim. story.

And then it was December... I can't believe that the holidays are officially in full swing. Here's to hoping that the days don't fly by too fast (especially since I have yet to decorate my miniature Christmas tree, bake sugar cookies or complete any holiday crafts). Another thing that I've been super pumped about: These unseasonably warm temps! While the tights have finally come out to play, I haven't had to pull out the boots and mittens just yet — and I'm not complaining one bit! Before Old Man Winter shows up for real (mark your calendars for Dec. 22), I have one more fall-esque #OOTD to share. These snapshots were taken a few weeks ago on what I consider to be the perfect fall day. 

For a minimalist + casual look, I teamed up a plaid Equipment button-down with my favorite Industry Standard jeans. Luckily, it was warm enough outside that I was able to get away with just a lightweight cardigan that I snagged from Club Monaco a few years back. I finished off my easy-going daytime look with some black d'Orsay flats from J.Crew (which have been on repeat lately). Side note: I also loved this color palette. The peachy pinks from my shirt offset my gray cardigan and ink blue jeans perfectly. 

In case you were wondering, the inspiration for this outfit came from the book, A Denim Story: Inspirations from Bellbottoms to Boyfriends by Emily Current, Meritt Elliott and Hilary Walsh. (Which I totally recommend investing in if you consider yourself to be a denim connoisseur.) One of the quotes from the book especially hit home for me: "Every pair of jeans has a story and tells a story." Naturally, I had to wear my go-to Industry Standard jeans... it only seemed fitting. 

I've put together a few #winning outfit combinations below, so that you can get the look:

What's been your go-to fall uniform? Leave a comment below or link to one of your favorite fall #OOTDs, so that I can check it out! :)


currently. obsessed. // alex. and. ani.

Loving Alex and Ani's Collegiate Collection
I hope that everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving + productive Black Friday (whether you braved the crowds or shopped online from the comfort of your own bed)! In addition to outlet mall shopping on Friday, I also participated in Small Business Saturday by heading out bright and early to shop at some of my favorite local businesses (including Duo!). As much as I love certain big-box retailers (J.Crew and Madewell, I'm looking at you), I'm just as enthusiastic about shopping small and giving back to my community.

Still in search for the perfect gift for your bestie, sister or roomie? Don't fret! I wanted to take a moment today to share one of my latest obsessions: Alex and Ani. If you haven't already heard about this jewelry brand that promotes positive energy, then you're in for a treat. While Alex and Ani carries necklaces, rings, earrings, etc., I'm primarily a fan of their expandable charm bangles. From collegiate-inspired charms to pretty birthstones, and even pineapples, you're bound to find something that fits your personality. Another selling point for me is that these bracelets are super lightweight and noise-free (read: no loud clink-clanks here). It's a subtle accessory that can be worn alone or stacked alongside any arm party for a casual #ootd.

I've rounded up a few of my favorite Alex and Ani picks below. Weighing in at around $30 (give or take), all of these would be great Secret Santa gifts or fun stocking stuffers. Oh, and before I forget: Between now and 11/30, you can receive free shipping + 15% off your purchase. No code required! The only items excluded from this offer appear to be their "Charity by Design Bangles." Get shopping!

Which Alex and Ani bangle is your favorite? Leave a comment below!


sundays. at. the. vmfa.

A few Sundays ago, I spent the day at the VMFA checking out the latest art exhibits + revisiting old favorites. If I could visit an art museum every Sunday, then believe me I would. While I'm definitely not an artist myself (I did major in art history, though!), there's nothing more inspiring to me than getting lost in a museum. From ancient Greek kraters to contemporary art, I love it all. Luckily for me, the VMFA is just a day trip away, so I'm able to make the trip quite often. While I enjoy exploring the art museums up in D.C. (the National Gallery of Art, the Hirshhorn and the National Portrait Gallery, just to name a few), they're not quite as easy to get to (read: traffic on traffic). Anyway, I thought that I would share a few snapshots from my day at the VMFA. If you're ever in the Richmond (VA) area, then I'd strongly encourage that you check it out. It's such a gem, that I myself, only discovered a few years back.

Nicholas Krushenick.  Jungle Jim Lieberman, 1969. 

Patrick Caulfield. The Mysterious Suspicion – After Magritte, 1974.

Richard Roth.  Untitled (yellow corner), 1971

Ed Ruscha.  Noise, Pencil, Broken Pencil, Cheap Western, 1963. 

A quick #ootd snapshot. The weather was a bit gloomy, so black skinny leg jeans + a field jacket were obligatory.

What's your favorite way to spend #SundayFunday? What do you do to get re-inspired? Leave a comment below!


kate. spade. // the. joy. ride.

If you weren't already beginning to slowly get into the holiday spirit (one Starbucks red cup at a time), then Kate Spade's latest installment of the #missadventure series is sure to bring on the holiday cheer. Starring Anna Kendrick and Zosia Mamet, The Joy Ride definitely leaves me lusting for all of KS's seasonal goodies — some of which I've rounded up below! Between the extra sparkly party heels, taxi cab clutch and cheeky Goreski glasses ring, it's safe to say that I want everything. Sigh.    
What are your favorite items from Kate Spade's holiday collection? Leave a comment below!


indian. fall.

I don't know about you, but I have been l-o-v-i-n-g the unseasonably warm fall temps that we've been having lately. It's safe to say that I can't believe that it's November — just this week, I was wearing a mini skirt paired with a three-quarter sleeve t-shirt (sans tights)! While I wish that the 70-degree temperatures would stick around (who needs winter anyway?!), I am happy to say that I haven't had to break out the heavy coats, cold weather accessories and tights just yet. Below, I've rounded up some of my favorite #OOTDs from the past month or so that exhibit "indian fall" dressing, as I like to call it. Also: I am totally aware that I wear my field jacket entirely too much, but to my defense, I just can't get enough of how versatile + practical it is.


Into the woods...

Bright red chino shorts + my favorite Lacoste polo (similar) for the win!

Green + white stripes have been my jam lately. Photographed here are my go-to Industry Standard jeans in the Simone Midrise fit.

Field jacket on the daily. (For a similar look, check out this J.Crew Factory field jacket and Foley + Corinna tote.)

Mad for plaid. Get the look with this plaid button-down that has the cutest elbow patches. 

| shadow play |
What are your fall essentials and favorite trends for the season? Leave a comment below!


october. the. list.

Happy Saturday + Halloweekend!  I thought that I would pop in for a second to share a few odds and ends that are currently on my radar.  Side note: How is today already the 31st?!  Fall, you have my permission to s-l-o-w down...

october. the. list.

1. Multicolor Mini Bucket Bag (Tory Burch) // Goodness knows, I love a good bucket bag. And this pint-sized one by Tory Burch is no exception. Those rainbow stripes are downright cheery.
2. Aya City Cotton-Jersey Sweatshirt (Madewell) // Cue the wanderlust: This fun sweatshirt makes me want to book a flight STAT. If only Vienna (Austria!) was included in the lineup — then it would have to be mine. Pair this stylish topper with a mini wool skirt or jeans for the quintessential fall look.
3. Merry & Bright Holiday Card Set (Kate Spade) // Calling all Spade girls, feast your eyes upon the perfect holiday card set for all of your season's greetings.
4. Ericka Flats (Kate Spade) // Fox flats for fall?  Count me in! Not only are these whimsical flats the epitome of fall traditions, but they're so darn cute to look at. I'm especially loving how Carly styled them with black skinny leg jeans while pumpkin picking.
5. Bold White Shimmer Horizontal Kori Ring (Suz Somersall) // Sparkle on with this pretty, shimmering druzy ring that would be the perfect accessory for upcoming holiday parties, New Year's Eve (and beyond).
6. Snap-Front Mini Skirt (Madewell) // If you know me at all, then you know that button-front skirts are at the top of my #iwantitnow list. This throwback snap-front style is everything. I want to pair it with oversized sweaters, chambray shirts, ankle boots — need I say more?
7. RGB Cosmetics "Monarch" (Net-a-Porter) // ...because it's Halloweekend and I wanted to add in somethin' orange. Not just restricted to the spookiest weekend of the year, this shade of bright orange is sure to add an extra pop to every #OOTD.

What are you currently loving this month? Feel free to share a link to your must-haves for October or leave a comment below!


PS: Under the tab "I Need That" (located at the top of this page) you can now find more items that I'm currently yearning for. I plan on updating it every month from here on out!

free. birthday. goodies.

I think that we can all agree that nothing beats free, especially when it's on your birthday. While I admittedly have hit the age where birthdays are no longer fun (another year older — really?!), I DO find comfort in miscellaneous birthday goodies. From a free scoop of my favorite flavored ice cream (mint chocolate chip all the way!) to free beauty products and discounts at my favorite stores, here's a roundup of the best b-day offers that I received this year.

Ice Cream

Baskin-Robbins: Sign up for Baskin-Robbins Birthday Club for a free scoop of ice cream.
Bruster's: Sign up for Bruster's Sweet Reward's e-club for a free small waffle cone on your birthday.
Ben & Jerry's: Sign up for the Ben & Jerry's newsletter for a free scoop of ice cream. While you're at it, go ahead and treat yo'self to one of their sprinkle covered sugar cones (see pic above)!


IHOP: ICYMI: You can get free pancakes on your birthday, people! Sign up for IHOP's Pancake Revolution e-mails for a stack of their scrumptious Rooty Tooty Fresh 'N Fruity Pancakes. SO good.
Starbucks: Odds are you already know about this one, but if you have a Starbucks gift card, then you can register it online + receive a free drink on your birthday. Heads up: You only have a few days to redeem it, so be sure to use your reward sooner than later!
Dunkin' Donuts: Following in Starbucks lead, Dunkin' also offers a free drink during your birthday month just by signing up for DD Perks
Panera Bread: Join MyPanera for a free pastry on your birthday. Hooray!
Bojangles: Join the Bojangles E-Club for a free Bojangles biscuit with any purchase.
Sonic: If you like tots (who doesn't?!), then you need to sign up for a Sonic account for free tater tots on your b-day.


Sephora: If you aren't already signed up as a Sephora Beauty Insider, then there's no time like right now to join the club. While I'm no beauty connoisseur, I always enjoy trying new products like this year's set of NARS lip pencils. 
Ulta: Speaking of beauty, Ulta has also joined in on the birthday fun by offering a freebie on your birthday. This year, they changed up the free gift every few months. (Last year, the complimentary gift was a full-size Calvin Klein mascara for all birthday months.) Heads up: If your birthday falls in October, November or December, you can get a free bareMinerals lipgloss (full size, $18 value!) by joining their Ultamate Rewards program.
Anthropologie: While a lot of stores offer birthday discounts via e-mail, Anthropologie is the only store that I know of that actually sends a b-day card in the mail with a 15% coupon. While it may not sound like a huge discount, it can be used on your total purchase + on sale items if you so wish. Sign up here!
Victoria's Secret: Again, you probably know about this one, but just in case... Sign up for VS e-mails and get $10 off any purchase during your birthday month. Woo!

What are your favorite birthday freebies? Leave a comment below + let me know if I left anything out!


transitional. plaid.

Despite it being fall, I still have one more summer #ootd to share.  To be fair, these outfit pics were taken on the Thursday before the "official" first day of fall.  While I may not be the biggest fan of cold weather, I am partial to endless plaid days. (Aren't we all?!)  While I kept my look simple, girly + Anthropologie-esque this go-around, I foresee this plaid shirt becoming a staple over the next few months.  Whether I dress it up with an accordion pleat skirt or pare it down with an oversized grandpa cardigan, the sartorial options are endless.  

#whatiwore:  On this particular fall outing, I paired my Madewell plaid button-down with a grey full skirt from Duo that is just as comfy as it looks.  Made of an almost sweatshirt-like material (but more lightweight), it's the epitome of casual, daytime dressing.  To keep things streamlined, I opted for a minimalist horn pendant necklace from Banana Republic.  As for the bejeweled leather sandals — they're an oldie but a goodie that I snagged from American Eagle quite a few years back.  I finished off the look with a tried-and-true Kate Spade bag in a bright red-orange hue.  For days when I need to lug my laptop around — and want to add a little POC to my outfit — this tote is a go-to. 

What are your fall staples?  Leave a comment below!

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