Gone to FL Pt. 2

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Another beautiful day in paradise!  Today was even better than yesterday in terms of weather – can you believe that? The sun was beaming and there wasn’t a cloud to be seen in the sky. My face got a bit red though (sorry mom, I should have listened to you) so today I paid extra attention and lathered up in sun block. The pool was semi-crowded with kids, parents, young adults and grandparents all having a wonderful spring break weekend. Since I’ve been getting some much needed color, I needed to wear something loose and comfortable for dinner tonight. My skin was feeling a bit raw after a day in the sun so this dress was perfect to slip into.

We have an entire day left tomorrow which is so exciting because today felt like Sunday until I happily realized it wasn’t. I really don’t want to go back to NYC though…. Boca has been absolute heaven. Here’s to another day of sunshine and happiness! Hope you are having a great weekend!Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

 PS. If you want to see a more in depth day of my weekend, follow me on Instagram #cestmoinatashatravels!

Dress: Banana Republic // Wedges: French Connection // Lipstick: Nars Heat // Necklace: Rosebud Jules

Gone to FL

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetWe arrived early this morning and had the entire day to lay out in 80 degree Florida weather. We had a wonderful lunch outside by the pool and hung out the entire day at The Polo Club in Boca Raton. Being in a bathing suit outside in the warmth felt so unfamiliar but so fantastic.

For dinner, we ate at The Crown Room which is part of the Polo Club and we had the most fabulous meal. Apple Martinis, foie gras, filet mignon ,and ice cream sundaes to finish off.. all just for me. It has been an amazing day and I can’t wait for another few days here. My dinner outfit consisted of white pants, wedges, and a white shirt – I really went all out in my “summer white” outfit because I was SO excited to be down here. The short hair has been a lot easier to manage in warmer weather than I thought it would be – I am absolutely loving it.

To see a few more highlights of my trip, follow me on Instagram @cestmoinatasha!

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetWhite Jeans: Zara // Wedges: French Connection // Shirt: Club Monaco // Clutch: JCrew // Purple Bracelet: Kate Spade // Nail Polish: Essie Clam Bake

Florida Dreaming

Laguna_Beach-Orange_County-Open_Back_Dress-Floral_Print-Faithfulthebrand-Beach-29{Image via}

The boyfriend and I are off to Florida tomorrow! We planned this trip a few months back and I am thrilled we made the move and booked our plane tickets to Boca Raton. The winter in NYC has been horrid (no news there) and it’s time we get out of this rut to refresh and unwind. I am so excited to relax, hang out, be outside in the sun and spend some quality family time. I am definitely keeping my fingers crossed that the weather will be sunny and 80s this weekend. Hopefully, it will be a bit more springy when we get back next week.

Here are a few beachy inspired pictures that are getting me all jittery for our weekend getaway! If you’d like to take a look at my Florida adventures, follow me on Instagram!

Paige+Jones+for+Caravents{Image via}

winter-beauty-getaways-daria-werbowy-beach-holding

{Image via}

10311710_10202368308237176_320482248972948804_n

{Image Via}

IMG_74511

{Image via}

PS. If you missed last week’s Casual post, check it out for some jean inspiration! Also, here’s a peppy song to get you all excited for the upcoming spring weather!

Girl Power – Arkins

Simply put, we believe people and the planet are worth far more than profit. No matter how much money you amass as a company, at the end of the day you’re still just a person and you still only have this earth to live on. It’s shameful the waste and destruction that this industry induces. The more we grow as a company, the more we learn, and the more we learn, the more we feel the need to make it right.

– Germaine DeNigris, Arkins Co-Founder

Screen Shot 2015-03-10 at 7.55.24 AM{Germaine DeNigris – Image Via}

A few blog posts ago, I mentioned how fortunate I am to be surrounded by young & talented people. Germaine DeNigris, a friend whom I met in NYC, recently graduated from the Fashion Institute of Technology with a degree in apparel and fashion design. Since moving to NYC from Northern California, Germaine has not only become a successful model, working with brands such as Maybelline, L’Oreal and Macy’s, but she’s also started a very successful clothing company, Arkins.

Germaine creates and designs comfortable, easy to wear, versatile and sustainable garments, all made in Manhattan. Each piece is so unique and intriguing – extremely soft too, which is a huge plus in my book. Since I had been recently eying a few Arkins pieces via Instagram, Germaine was kind enough to invite me into her really cute & cozy Chelsea apartment to try a few on. I ended up leaving with a beautiful grey skirt and a really cute plaid shirt that I have already worn out and about. I am still eying this jacket though and may need to snag it sooner rather than later…

As we sat around and chatted with homemade brewed coffee in hand, Germaine was kind enough to tell me the story behind Arkins as I interesedly asked about her journey in launching this beautiful company – take a look here!

Styleline3*{Image Via}

1. What or whom inspired you to create a womenswear line? Have you always been interested in garments, fashion, the clothing industry etc.?

I was always in love with making things. When I was a kid, I would go to goodwill around the corner from my house, buy interesting garments, take them apart, and put them back together in different ways. I’ve always loved making art that you can wear and that is purposeful.

2. Arkins is a unique clothing line – you create garments from renewable wool, vegan leather, sustainable materials, that are all made in Manhattan. What made you choose to go that direction when creating your line?

We saw this as an opportunity to do more than just make art, we saw an opportunity to make a statement. People who shop with us want to make that statement too. Like us, they believe that our planet matters, that our people matter, and that these things deserve a different level of respect than the industry status quo.

3. Does your personal style reflect the clothing designs you create for Arkins?

I think so. I think my clothes relate to interesting, conscious, creative people who like to look put together but don’t want to fuss with their outfits.

victorias homepage{Image Via}

4. What does the name Arkins mean?

It was my Grandmothers maiden name. She was the epitome of the brand; community oriented, driven, artistic.

 5. What would you say is your best selling piece?

Our most popular piece has definitely been our Mandarin Kimono Dress. We’ve had people as young as 20 and as old as 75 place orders on this piece! It’s a flattering fit on anybody. The Mandarin Jacket has also been quite popular.

Styleline1*{Mandarin Kimono Dress – Image Via}IMG_9090{Mandarin Jacket – Image Via}

6. You have been able to grow your business tremendously over these past few years. What’s your secret sauce? In other words, how have you been able to build this company so successfully from the ground up?

I think it’s been a wonderful combination of loving what I do, and having a supportive partner. I honestly wake up some mornings and can’t believe this is what I get to do. It’s so much fun and it’s never the same. If I’m ever feeling overwhelmed, Niki is always there to help me make a game plan to divide and conquer.

ArkinsAboutImage (640x360){Germaine and Niki – Image Via}

7. What type of marketing and social media tools do you find most effective in terms of advertising Arkins?

Instagram has been our main focus because we like to use images to get our message across so it has yielded the best results, however Pinterest and Facebook are also great.

8. If you were able to do a collaboration with any company in the entire world, who would you choose and why?

I think a brand like Eileen Fisher could be interesting. They are a brand I really look up to in terms of what they have done for their local community and their commitment to sustainability is right on track with ours.

laurens homepage image{Image Via}

9. Where can I buy Arkins? Do you have a store?

You can shop directly on our online shop, Shop-Arkins.com (currently having a 50% off sale!)  or our entire collection is also available in person at VCurated in Brooklyn.

Screen Shot 2015-03-10 at 7.55.44 AM

{Germaine DeNigris – Image Via}

After learning so much about Arkins, Germain’s philosophy on shopping responsibly, and the steps she’s taken to grow her business, all I could think of was WOW. I felt inspired and proud that a 20 something year old woman from my generation created something this kick ass. Hence where the blog post title comes in – Girl Power. Girl Power to me is celebrating girls who are awesome and girls who create something they really believe in, which I thought was perfectly fitting here.

As spring is approaching, I am really excited to check out Arkins Spring Collection and to see what Germaine has in store!

Ps. Don’t forget to check out Shop-Arkins.com, currently having a 50% off sale!

*Images Photo Credit: Christina Emilie

Tipsy Parson

Belly Filling Goodness

– Tipsy Parson

IMG_5710
Whenever friends come to visit, I always want to show them the coolest, yummiest spots in New York City. There are tons of amazing places to choose from so I never want to let anyone down especially if they are visiting for just a hot minute. Sunday brunch is definitely a BIG event which I take very seriosuly but at times it can be tricky to find the perfect brunch spot for larger groups. I am a pretty big foody and I love reading reviews or asking friends for restaurant recommendations.

I ended up choosing Tipsy Parson, recommended by a friend, and let’s just say it was southern comfort galore. Absolutely delicious & had just enough space for a large group. Not only was the food filling but it was extremely tasty and it reminded me of a nice home cooked southern meal. The staff was friendly and attentive – southern hospitality at it’s best. The overall vibe was charming and it brought back memories of my trips down to Charleston where I love exploring the food scene.

We started off with drinks and an appetizer – a Spicy Bloody Mary pitcher and a Tipsy Palmer pitcher (sweet tea, fresh mint & vodka) along with an order of “Frickles” (fried pickles) dipped in buttermilk dressing. All so perfect. 

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset
We all ended up ordering different dishes which made it so much easier to try multiple meals from the extensive menu. From the Biscuit Bomb to the BBQ Pulled Pork Spoonbread to the Farmstand to the Granola and the Savory Biscuit, the dishes were perfectly sized and we all left with our tummies very satisfied.

I had the Savory Biscuit with pimento cheese (I only recently found out how much I love pimento cheese) and scrambled eggs. The biscuit was warm on the inside and the pimento cheese was amazing. The combination of the three flavors worked really well together and let’s just say there was nothing left on my plate… 

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset
My friend ordered the the BBQ Pulled Pork Spoonbread which consisted of pulled pork topped with fried eggs and oozy bbq sauce. It was a mix of smokey flavors and the eggs ended up being a perfect topping.  The pork was tender and the corn bread was a nice balance to all of the rich flavors.
Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset
 My very good friend Caroline (and roommate from college) had the Farmstand which made it to the very top of my list. Two poached eggs with veggie and greens sound simple but the pesto and almond pieces were the cherry on top. The meal had pieces of artichokes (which i love) peas, tomatoes and salad. The poached eggs were runny and really worked with the pesto and veggie flavors.
Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset
Now this meal was pretty intense and unique but definitely super cheesy which is ALWAYS a good thing. They call this the Biscuit Bomb! Fantastic name, right? I unfortunately do not eat sausage so I disappointingly was not able to have a taste but holy heck when the plate came out oozing with cheese, it looked unbelievable!

The biscuit bomb is stuffed with country sausage and cheddar cheese. Doesn’t that sounds amazing?! The side of scrambled eggs may have been too much of an addition but you can choose to have the Biscuit Bomb on it’s own or I saw it ordered as an appetizer too.

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset
 Last but definitely not least, the Granola. Granola CAN be boring – but not this magic granola. The granola pieces were sweet just like frosted flakes but it was balanced perfectly with the non fat greek yogurt. I loved the preserved fruits too which had a syrupy flavor to them. A healthy meal that is deceivingly sweet = best of both worlds in my book. I almost ate the entire thing (after I finished the savory biscuit).
Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset
Since brunch is a must do meal and calories don’t count on the weekends, Tipsy Parson is a MUST try. There is something on the brunch menu for every craving – sweet, savory, cheesy, eggy, waffly etc. The cocktails are on par, the service was really great, the food was perfectly seasoned, and the ambiance was super cute. I can’t wait to go back to try the Shrimp & Grits which is all I’ve been reading about.

Do you have any favorite brunch spots in NYC? I would love to know so I can add them to my list of places to try!

Casual

Chloe_Marielou_Bartoli-44-728x616At times, it can be challenging trying to dress “not so corporate” in a corporate evironment. I want to look polished and professional but I also want to add some personality and flare into whatever I am wearing. For me, it’s not only important to look appropriate at work (dress for the job you want mentality) but it’s also important I put a bit of a Natasha twist into the Ann Taylor skirt I may be wearing or the JCrew button down I purchased.

It took me a bit of time to adjust my wardrobe from “collegey” to “9-5 joby” and I’ve had to grow into a style I felt comfortable and confident in. My style is of course constantly evolving and changing as time goes on which is expected. Casual Fridays are definitely something I look forward to at the end of a long week because I can finally wear jeans at the office. Jeans are pretty tricky though….. they may seem easy to wear but they can definitely look sloppy if not paired with the right shoes, shirts or accessories. Here are a few inspirational causal Friday looks I love and I can see myself leveraging bits and pieces of these ladies chicness for work  (and the ripped jeans on weekends of course).

9199Brog1591WebParis Fashionweek day 6 Processed with VSCOcam with g3 preset DSC_6946-Edit-2-2wdmadewell-5 Images borrowed from 1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6

Music Thursday ~ No.4

Have you had a chance to see the movie Chef yet? It’s on Netflix (I am a huge Netflix fan) and I highly recommend it. Jon Favreau is absolutely hilarious. It is a perfect Sunday night, laying around, type of movie. Here’s a little synopsis – a once very famous Chef get’s stuck in a rut because he kept on cooking the same boring foods in recent years which left him uninspired. He decides to start a food truck and the rest is history (I don’t want to spoil the movie if you end up watching it)!

The soundtrack is pretty awesome and throughout the movie I found myself wanting to baila (= dance in spanish) and eat the entire time. I loved this partciular song from the soundtrack and I have been bopping around to it as I commute to and from work in this frigid Manhattan weather. It reminds me of the sun, the beach, good food and only smiles — which is just one week away. That’s right… I am heading down to sunny Florida next week and I.cannot.wait. Happy Thursday (New Yorkers stay warm or stay inside today) and hope you enjoy the song!

PS. Here’s Music Thursday No.3 in case you missed it last week!

Bridesmaid Gifts?

DSC_0077
I loved being a bridesmaid at my friend Casey’s wedding. I am extremely lucky to have had such a fun, drama free, first time experience. As people my age are getting engaged & married, I have been hearing tons of bridesmaid and bridezilla horror stories. Casey was thankfully the complete opposite of a bridezilla – she was so calm, inclusive in her decision making, conscious of people’s time, aware of activity costs, and I really could go on forever. She strived to make it a special day for all of us bridesmaids throughout the entire experience.

When I received not one but TWO gifts from Casey for being a bridesmaid, I was utterly confused (in a good way).“Why am I getting a beautiful Kate Spade Knotted Bracelet and a gorgeous black & white framed picture (see above)? All gifts should be for you, Casey!”  But apparently, bridesmaid gifts are an actual “thing.” Who knew! My curiosity about bridesmaid gifts led me to the ‘net where I scavenged for cute ideas and personal takes. Take a look!

a22c527608417e3e632176464d9df66a

{Bathrobes & monogrammed hangers}

2b0a3b02cd1cb79139b3ea1426c7f356{Beach Totes}

e01f513856178fec1b6f4e25ce743c1e

{Knotted Gold Earrings}cfc3cd218fa7e7ad94e10e3d6033d8fa

{Champagne Glasses}

Have you received a cute bridesmaid gift? I would love to know all about it!

*All above pictures are taken from Pinterest

And I mean Business

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset
One of the most thoughtful gifts I have ever received were these bad boys just last week – c’est moi natasha business cards! What an amazingly brilliant idea, right?! I would have never thought to create something like this for myself…. not in a million, trillion, years. My boyfriend’s sister put these together for me and they are absolutely beautiful. The format, the font, the logo – she designed them front to back. I was so deeply touched by the grand gesture and the coolest part was that she was able to pinpoint the exact aesthetics of the site onto the card.

As soon as I got them, I was so excited and began handing them out to everyone I knew in Manhattan. But I want/need to keep them in a very nice home so they don’t get all bent out of shape. Meaning, I need to start looking ASAP for a very cool business card holder. I have never owned any sort of business card let alone a business card holder so of course I started perusing Pinterest for ideas. I found a few options that immediately caught my eye – see below! I can’t decide what look or design I am going for yet but there does seem to be an animal theme going on here… 275b8f0885a21ca6318cff87f05d7ee0{Sticking with the Elephant Theme}1a6bea5de0acac4fdfa3a14aa392c743

{Golden Crocodile}

2c5fda98aa0323cd90909289e3777410

{Simple & White}17d3d22b9795db359fd35e4210667d24

{Crazy Little Monkey}

Which one of these business card holders do you like? Any favorites?

Looking Back

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset
{new c’est moi natasha desk inspiration}

It’s March, it’s March! February went by very very quickly… I cannot believe it’s already the third month into 2015. These past few weeks have been such a whirlwind especially since starting this blog. I am so thankful for all of the amazing support from all of you that read and visit this site. This blog has been a huge, brave, leap for me and I am extremely grateful for all of the kind words and genuine interest in c’est moi natasha. I have learned a tremendous amount since starting this creative outlet, so much more than I ever imagined. I am very excited to continue improving c’est moi natasha, posting a lot of interesting content, connecting with friends from all of over the world and most importantly writing about things that I love.

Here are a few of my favorite c’est moi natasha Instagram snaps from February that I thought I would share as a “looking back” moment. Thank you all for joining my adventures and I hope you continue following along. You can follow me here on Instagram to get a zoomed in look of c’est moi natasha’s day to day!

IMG_5478
{birthday spring flowers}

IMG_5321{c’est moi natasha new pinterest page – follow me here!}IMG_5225{blueberry-orange tart w/ vanilla ice cream & chocolate syrup}IMG_5346{loving the new short hair}