Snapshots from California
Hey readers! I apologize for my lack of posting lately, but my poor ole laptop from frosh year finally bit the dust. Although truly a pain to blog with, the computer almost looks like some rad vintage piece of technology…..plastered to death with surf/skate stickers and lovingly peppered with splatters of nail polish a la Jackson Pollock (Come on…we all do our nails at the computer so some slip-ups are bound to happen).
On another note, I just returned from five glorious days on the West Coast visiting family and friends. The LA weather, the shopping, and the food were all so good it was practically criminal! As per usual I was without a camera, but the Iphone came in handy for some quick photo-ops…..and I definitely caught some good ones.
I stayed with my aunt, uncle, and two adorable cousins in Venice Beach. Jack is 8 and already cooler than I am….Emmett is 6 and quite possibly the cutest kid alive. I brought them some stick-on mustaches and Twister which made for some funny pics. Emmett was also obsessed with trying on my shades (see below)…and they were both quite fascinated with my clothing and jewelry. These two little guys have super fresh style and dress themselves every morning! I can only imagine how their style will evolve.
Jack’s style is the perfect blends of East Coast prep and West Coast surfer. Jealous.
Emmett is a bit more adventurous with his style…..he LOVES bright colors and tie dye just like his cuz.
While there were many highlights of the trip (and this was not my first SoCal visit), I really loved getting the chance to explore the different areas of the experience sample local flavors, people, fashions, architecture and culture to get the BEST LA experience possible. You guys know I do my research when it comes to finding the best spots to hit, but I was especially lucky to have friends show me around.
My all time favorite neighborhood is Venice Beach, mostly inhabited by the young, the fabulous, and the broke (aka hippies and surfers – definitely my crowd). Venice borders Santa Monica (also a great spot and a little more urban, which I dig). There is so much to be said about this area….the shopping is UNREAL (I hit up Planet Blue, Buffalo Exchange, Vans, Brandy Melville, Out of the Closet, Kitson, Fred Segal, and Free People of course!). I also picked up plenty of handmade/fair trade jewelry on the boardwalk by the beach, where I could have strolled for hours on end. On my last night in LA, I walked down to Venice Beach ocean-front and caught the most beautiful golden sherbet sunset; in fact, sunsets in California look like this just about every night. It’s also very necessary to mention the street art in Venice….I was so blown away by some of the designs (pictured below) that I wish I could have printed on graphic tees. Check out some shots from Venice/Santa Monica:
Cruisin’ through Venice en route to famous burger joint In-N-Out in my aunt’s ’95 Mercedes wagon.
Loading up on some soda at Wahoo’s Fish Taco. This place was new to me, but the delicious fish tacos won me over. Wahoo’s is a bit like Chipotle but better, faster, and cooler with a surf-and-skate atmosphere. The staff is also extremely nice and let me, Emmett and Jack scoop up handfuls of stickers…..of course it’s only in Cali.
Umani Burger is located inside of Fred Segal in Santa Monica. Not only did I experience the gustatory bliss of the U-branded “Umami Burger,” I also walked right past Whitney Port and sat directly next to Hilary Swank!!!! Still cannot get over how beautiful they both are, and how effing delicious that burger was….
Jason took me to a total Lucy breakfast spot called La Conversation in West Hollywood. It seemed like a spot you might find in Manhattan….everything was perfection, from the neo-baroque interior, to the iced croissants, to the fresh-squeezed OJ.
Having lived in Rome and New York, I’ve seen some stellar street art but these designs really take the cake. I’m obsessed with the heart hand….if anyone knows this artist (or any of these artists) please help me get in touch with them!!!
Sunsets like these make you happy to be alive.
I also had a blast exploring two other, more unfamiliar areas of Los Angeles: West Hollywood with my friend Jason (upscale, trendy, chic, and so picturesque – much like the restaurant you see above) and Culver City with my friend Jen (modern-day retro with great restaurants!) I really wish I had more time to spend in these areas because they both offer a wide variety of people, places and things.
The weather was surprisingly warm for December….60 and sunny by day and chilly by night. My outfit choices were actually perfect until the clock hit 5 pm, and then I was frantically searching for layers. The California air was so bright and clear that it made it easy to jump out of bed and face the day. It was difficult to come home, but I know I’ll be back soon, and next time with a group of friends and much more time to explore everything that this wonderful place has to offer (especially the nature….I’ve GOT to go biking/hiking).
Hope you enjoyed the pics, and I promise I’ll be back on the scene once I get this computer situation figured out