Thursday, December 31, 2015

a ladylike NYE

Allergic To Vanilla, boohoo dress, Sophia Webster Coco Flamingo heels, vintage earrings, ladylike dress, feminine vibe, SF style, how to style a ribbon, purple faux fur stole, Miu Miu cat-eye sunglasses
Allergic To Vanilla, boohoo dress, Sophia Webster Coco Flamingo heels, vintage earrings, ladylike dress, feminine vibe, SF style, how to style a ribbon, purple faux fur stole, Miu Miu cat-eye sunglasses
Allergic To Vanilla, boohoo dress, Sophia Webster Coco Flamingo heels, vintage earrings, ladylike dress, feminine vibe, SF style, how to style a ribbon, purple faux fur stole, Miu Miu cat-eye sunglasses
Allergic To Vanilla, boohoo dress, Sophia Webster Coco Flamingo heels, vintage earrings, ladylike dress, feminine vibe, SF style, how to style a ribbon, purple faux fur stole, Miu Miu cat-eye sunglasses
Allergic To Vanilla, boohoo dress, Sophia Webster Coco Flamingo heels, vintage earrings, ladylike dress, feminine vibe, SF style, how to style a ribbon, purple faux fur stole, Miu Miu cat-eye sunglasses
Allergic To Vanilla, boohoo dress, Sophia Webster Coco Flamingo heels, vintage earrings, ladylike dress, feminine vibe, SF style, how to style a ribbon, purple faux fur stole, Miu Miu cat-eye sunglasses
{boohoo dress c/o, ribbon from Christmas decorations around the house, earrings, pumps, faux fur stole}



Well folks, here it is the last new look of the year. 2015 has been pretty incredible for me, plenty of highs and lows, par for the course, but it's all been an learning lesson and a joy to experience. I'll be celebrating this last day of the year in Mexico City! So I may be wearing something a tad different, but if I were in SF I would be all over this ladylike look- I actually wore it to my husband's holiday party a few weeks ago. I love the high neckline and the exaggerated skirt, I added a bit of oomph by pulling a ribbon off of one of my holiday decorations and tying it around my waist, the perfect ladylike touch with the vintage-esque earrings, dainty pumps, and fur stole. Happy New Year dear friends, be safe and enjoy the rest of your year!

Follow my Mexico City journey on Instagram or on snapchat at carlinaharris.

Post sponsored by boohoo and ShopStyle.

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Tuesday, December 29, 2015

holiday hosting {with cupcake vineyards wine}

Holiday hosting, holiday party, how to host a holiday party, Cupcake Vineyards, Mission de Flores sf, White Elephant holiday game
Holiday hosting, holiday party, how to host a holiday party, Cupcake Vineyards, Mission de Flores sf, White Elephant holiday game
 Holiday hosting, holiday party, how to host a holiday party, Cupcake Vineyards, Mission de Flores sf, White Elephant holiday game
Holiday hosting, holiday party, how to host a holiday party, Cupcake Vineyards, Mission de Flores sf, White Elephant holiday game
Holiday hosting, holiday party, how to host a holiday party, Cupcake Vineyards, Mission de Flores sf, White Elephant holiday game
Holiday hosting, holiday party, how to host a holiday party, Cupcake Vineyards, Mission de Flores sf, White Elephant holiday game
Holiday hosting, holiday party, how to host a holiday party, Cupcake Vineyards, Mission de Flores sf, White Elephant holiday game
Holiday hosting, holiday party, how to host a holiday party, Cupcake Vineyards, Mission de Flores sf, White Elephant holiday game

Not too long ago I planned my annual holiday party- albeit a tad impromptu as I gave my guests less than a week and a half notice- but a good time we definitely had. I've always loved entertaining, tidying up the place, baking something delicious, and watching as the first guest rolls through to the last one's departure. This process makes this special time of year that much more rewarding, sprucing the place up and getting to spend it imbibing over lively conversation and amongst good friends. 

The imbibing part came easy, as it usually does. I generally pour a white, a red, have a beer on hand (mostly for the boys), and I love having a signature cocktail to complete the beverage menu. This year I was lucky enough to have Cupcake Vineyards wine on hand for my guests. Cupcake and I go far back, I've drank it for years and each time a new varietal comes out I'm even more pleased than the last- Black Forest is my current fave! I wanted to step up my cocktail game so I created a Winter sangria with a few bottles of Cupcake. It came out even better than I expected with an infused cinnamon and cranberry simple syrup, a few splashes of orange liquor, seasonal winter fruit, and artisanal ice cubes- I proudly made- peppered with mint and pomegranate seeds to round out this holiday beverage. 

No party is complete without food so I asked my guests to bring their favorite appetizer. While I could have been more specific with what to bring, the plethora of chips and guac, chips and cheese, and chips and french onion dip were actually perfect for the atmosphere and the chill vibe of the event. I may or may not have five unopened bags of tortilla chips in my pantry from this evening still. ;) I decided to add to the treats and did a little baking the evening prior. As you know in this post I have a thing for donuts, so I baked a batch of Cinnamon Pumpkin ones to share. They filled the apartment with a just-baked homemade aroma. Exactly what you want your guests to come "home" to.

An activity is always a good idea so I set up a White Elephant gift exchange- the one where you can steal presents depending on the number you draw out of a hat. We had bottles of sake, tea kettles, and truffle oil up for grabs. It took a little while for my guests to feel comfortable stealing, but once it happening, it couldn't be stopped. Everyone left a little fuller, a little happier and with a tangible memento from the evening.

The little touches around the apartment really upped the holiday factor — the dangling lights in the hallway, the decorative ombré tinsel tree, and the gorgeous holiday florals from local SF shop Mission de Flores. After a few glasses of my winter sangria I kicked my heels of and took in the moment, surrounded by friends, family and loved ones- just the way I like my holidays.

Post sponsored by Cupcake Vineyards wine. Florals c/o Mission de Flores 

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Monday, December 28, 2015

windy city layers {in express}

red buffalo check print scarf, cashmere scarf, Janessa Leone fedora, Coach moto jacket, Express Aztec circle sweater, black overalls, style in the city, allergic to vanilla
red buffalo check print scarf, cashmere scarf, Janessa Leone fedora, Coach moto jacket, Express Aztec circle sweater, black overalls, style in the city, allergic to vanilla
red buffalo check print scarf, cashmere scarf, Janessa Leone fedora, Coach moto jacket, Express Aztec circle sweater, black overalls, style in the city, allergic to vanilla
red buffalo check print scarf, cashmere scarf, Janessa Leone fedora, Coach moto jacket, Express Aztec circle sweater, black overalls, style in the city, allergic to vanilla
red buffalo check print scarf, cashmere scarf, Janessa Leone fedora, Coach moto jacket, Express Aztec circle sweater, black overalls, style in the city, allergic to vanilla  red buffalo check print scarf, cashmere scarf, Janessa Leone fedora, Coach moto jacket, Express Aztec circle sweater, black overalls, style in the city, allergic to vanilla
red buffalo check print scarf, cashmere scarf, Janessa Leone fedora, Coach moto jacket, Express Aztec circle sweater, black overalls, style in the city, allergic to vanilla
{overalls, Express Aztec print sweater, cashmere scarf, leather moto jacket, pumps, fedora, lip color}


If ever there was a time more deemed "sweater weather", that time is now in San Francisco. Sure, the weather year round is on average a tepid 60 or so, but during the past few weeks I've relied on my trusty sweaters more than ever, with the temps dipping in the low 40's. Sweaters for me, as with most of my wardrobe need something special- a touch of fringe, a swath of sparkle, and in this case the print got me. The graphic pops of black and white really made this sweater stand out. I wanted to style it with other neutral tones to let the sweater stand on it's own, and I needed extra layers so I opted for overalls. A few pops of red from the lip color and the scarf gave the look some extra warmth. And, to sass up an otherwise low key look I added my latest hat purchase and some killer pumps- have you seen the heel on these

As much as I love my sweaters I'm determined to stay out of them come NYE- sass, and sparkle all the way, baby! What are you rocking this NYE?

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Post sponsored by Express and ShopStyle.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

his & her holiday sweaters {with express}

 
 
 
 



Ladies, and gents I present to you my handsome husband, Francisco — the male model in these photos. ;) Express asked us to try out a few different sweater styles for the holiday season. Sweaters in any shape or form - chunky, cropped, or cashmere - are a huge part of my wardrobe this time of year so of course I was thrilled to get to play dressup with Francisco, as they have a huge sweater selection for both men and women, in lots of great color options too. 

Francisco went with a zip up mock neck style in a subtle grey, which is very him, and paired it with one of his favorite holiday button ups. It's been raining pretty hard the last few days so the extra layer for warmth was great for the chilly day. I went with neutral tunic sweater- I love the deep v neck, but it was too cold to wear by itself so I layered it with a button up, and paired with a long vest in true Carlina form. I loved how both our looks came out, and were complimented so well with our Express sweaters.

I'll be styling another of my sweater picks later this week, so stay tuned and happy holidays! 

Post sponsored by Express. Photography by Melissa de Mata.

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Monday, December 21, 2015

cooking with carlina {salted maple donuts}

Cooking with Carlina, DIY donuts, baking donuts, Williams-Sonoma donut mix, Williams-Sonoma Salted Maple donuts, donut pan, donuts for the holidays, how to make your own donuts
Cooking with Carlina, DIY donuts, baking donuts, Williams-Sonoma donut mix, Williams-Sonoma Salted Maple donuts, donut pan, donuts for the holidays, how to make your own donuts
Cooking with Carlina, DIY donuts, baking donuts, Williams-Sonoma donut mix, Williams-Sonoma Salted Maple donuts, donut pan, donuts for the holidays, how to make your own donuts
Cooking with Carlina, DIY donuts, baking donuts, Williams-Sonoma donut mix, Williams-Sonoma Salted Maple donuts, donut pan, donuts for the holidays, how to make your own donuts
Cooking with Carlina, DIY donuts, baking donuts, Williams-Sonoma donut mix, Williams-Sonoma Salted Maple donuts, donut pan, donuts for the holidays, how to make your own donuts
Cooking with Carlina, DIY donuts, baking donuts, Williams-Sonoma donut mix, Williams-Sonoma Salted Maple donuts, donut pan, donuts for the holidays, how to make your own donuts
Cooking with Carlina, DIY donuts, baking donuts, Williams-Sonoma donut mix, Williams-Sonoma Salted Maple donuts, donut pan, donuts for the holidays, how to make your own donuts

Cooking has always been something I've enjoyed doing. It's a form of distracting the busy mind away from the little things that you somehow can't stop thinking about, while making something delicious to feed your family or loved ones. Whenever I tell people I write a blog called "Allergic to Vanilla" they always ask if I really am. For the record I'm not — it's style metaphor for having a flair for the more interesting options of clothing out there. That being said I most certainly do not have a problem cooking with vanilla! In today's post I wanted to share one of the easiest desserts I've made in a while, and it's on the healthier side. Well, sort of.

A few weeks ago I was in Williams-Sonoma and came across a donut pan I just had to have, and several donut mix flavors next to it. I immediately knew I wanted to make baked donuts for the holidays for as many people as I could. So I scooped up the pan, a few mixessalted maple and pumpkin cinnamon, and proudly walked out with one of the most satisfying purchases I've made in awhile. The donuts are baked not fried, hence the "healthy" description above,  extremely easy to make and pretty gratifying once the icing part begins.

Pictured above is my first donut making endeavor- salted maple flavor! The first batch didn't come out so great as I overfilled them, so the donuts came out more like muffins than the typical donut. But, the next few were just right. I've since tried my hand at a few different flavors including a pumpkin cinnamon one and am officially hooked on baking my donuts. I love cooking and baking this time of year, and I can tell donuts during Christmas will be a healthy part of my diet going forward. ;)

Hope you all are getting excited for the Christmas holiday! How are you celebrating and more importantly what are you eating?

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Thursday, December 17, 2015

city lights

OTK boots, Circs by Sam Edelman, over the knee boots, chunky turtleneck, leather moto jacket, red lips, San Francisco nights, Financial District, startup styleOTK boots, Circs by Sam Edelman, over the knee boots, chunky turtleneck, leather moto jacket, red lips, San Francisco nights, Financial District, startup style
OTK boots, Circs by Sam Edelman, over the knee boots, chunky turtleneck, leather moto jacket, red lips, San Francisco nights, Financial District, startup style
OTK boots, Circs by Sam Edelman, over the knee boots, chunky turtleneck, leather moto jacket, red lips, San Francisco nights, Financial District, startup style
OTK boots, Circs by Sam Edelman, over the knee boots, chunky turtleneck, leather moto jacket, red lips, San Francisco nights, Financial District, startup style
 OTK boots, Circs by Sam Edelman, over the knee boots, chunky turtleneck, leather moto jacket, red lips, San Francisco nights, Financial District, startup style
OTK boots, Circs by Sam Edelman, over the knee boots, chunky turtleneck, leather moto jacket, red lips, San Francisco nights, Financial District, startup style
 OTK boots, Circs by Sam Edelman, over the knee boots, chunky turtleneck, leather moto jacket, red lips, San Francisco nights, Financial District, startup style
OTK boots, Circs by Sam Edelman, over the knee boots, chunky turtleneck, leather moto jacket, red lips, San Francisco nights, Financial District, startup style
OTK boots, Circs by Sam Edelman, over the knee boots, chunky turtleneck, leather moto jacket, red lips, San Francisco nights, Financial District, startup style
{Coach moto jacket, old turtleneck- similar here, Paige denim, OTK Circus by Sam Edelman boots, 3.1 Pashli satchel, Stila Beso lipcolor}




San Francisco shines year round with it's already bustling energy and natural sparkle, but this time of year even so- with the buzz of the shoppers, the twinkling lights in the windows, and the usually hard-at-work startup employee ducking out of work a little bit early to spread some cheer elsewhere. The blue hazy hue of the city with it's numerous city lights behind me was the perfect backdrop to capture this casual wintery look. I've been doubling up on layers since SF is experiencing a chill it usually doesn't. A chunky turtleneck is good anytime of year around these parts but even more so under my absolute favorite leather moto- it seriously gets compliments weekly, and people are always surprised to hear where it's from! And can we talk about these OTK boots?- love them in this unexpected brown hue.

It's almost Friday, guys — one more day, we'll make it. ;)

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Photography by Melissa de Mata