The Better 10 Minute Breakfast

October 29, 2014

Eggs, Salmon, Asparagus, Cheese
As midterms come to a close, I am thanking the heavens that I have made it through one of the most stressful periods during the school year without getting sick. I feel like everyone around me is coughing, sneezing or sniffling, and I'm attributing my stellar immune system to the effort  rigorous vitamin taking and breakfast eating. 
asparagus
I used to be a chronic breakfast-skipper, but I now realize there really is no excuse. It's important to take care of myself, and waking up 15 minutes earlier to enjoy a nice breakfast is well worth the struggle of getting out of bed.
I'm especially looking into ways to incorporate veggies into my breakfast, and so far this is my go to meal that I don't think I could possibly get sick of. It's a 3 egg omelet (that uses only one yolk), an ounce of smoked salmon, sautéed asparagus and just a sprinkle of parmesan cheese.
eggs1
Go ahead and give it a try and let me know in the comment section what your favorite quick breakfast is.

The Better Martha Talks Art with Tara Seawright

October 26, 2014

Today I'm so excited to be able to share with you some great information I got with the talented, New York-based designer, Tara Seawright. Not only is she an amazing designer, but she also uses her studio art background to help direct clients through the process of selecting art for their homes.
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Photo courtesy of Tara Seawright 

TARA'S ADVICE FOR ART SELECTION 

Starting the process: Go to museums and start to develop your eye. Do you like sculpture or photography? Give life to the dream; this part does not cost a thing. Expose yourself to new artists by going to gallery openings, museum shows and even by browsing online.

Finding what you can afford: When starting an art collection, you do not need to buy a million dollar piece. There are great affordable online resources such as Uprise Art and Saatchi Art. They both provide a full range of art and prices. The greatest form of flattery is imitation. So another way is to make your own art.

Placement: Certain places beg for art: over a mantel, between a pair of sconces, or above a large piece of furniture. Be creative. The installation is part of the creative process. Put art in unexpected places like above the toilet in the bathroom. Play with scale too. Place small pieces on a large wall or a large piece on a small wall.

Creating a cohesive collection: Think twice about buying from the same artist over and over again. It is important to have variety and to reflect your own interests. Repeating a theme is a great way to reflect the people living within the space. Everyone has their own natural aesthetic which generally tends to be cohesive; they just do not know exactly what it is. That’s why it is so important to expose yourself to different things. The possibilities are endless. Do not limit yourself.



TARA'S ADVICE ON THE DECORATING PROCESS

Big transformations on a little budget: Paint. Paint is the biggest bang for your buck. You can go simple or go crazy with colors: just be creative. Express yourself. Also, the use of mirrors and proper lighting make a huge difference in a space as well.

Making the functional beautiful: Wallpaper can add a lot of beautiful texture and contribute to a very glamorous look without sacrificing the functionality of a space. For those who rent, temporary wallpaper offers a fun alternative to paint.

When to splurge and save: Everything does not have to cost an arm and a leg to be beautiful. Many believe expensive equals better; that’s not necessarily the case. For those who are on a budget (and those who aren’t), as an alternative to Pottery Barn and Target, go to thrift stores and flea markets to find unusual objects to express your personality. The value of the object means nothing; it’s all in the presentation.


Tara was so sweet and showed me around her home and office. I couldn't resists snapping a series of textural shots to share. 
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door door1 door2
 I want to give a big thanks to Tara and right hand, Ellen for taking the time to talk to me. They were so great and their advice is so applicable to anyones life style and living space. To see some more of Tara's work click on the pictures below.

taras work
Photos courtesy of Tara Seawright 

The Better Dorm Room: Junior Year

September 30, 2014

Full Room View
Finally my dorm is complete and I'm so excited to share it with you guys! Generally the first remark people make is, "Oh, you're room is so...small...but you've made really good use of the space." I'll admit, my room is tiny, especially considering that I am an upperclassman (ew, I'm old!) and had many other options. I lived in this building last year and loved it so much the idea of moving was unbearable. So yes, it is small, but size is never an excuse for sacrificing style, and I'm always up for a challenge (as long as it isn't calculus).
My delicious bed
While I do still have a few pieces from my old room this year was about going above and beyond...almost to the point of complete ridiculousness for a dorm. The peacock, silk curtains really made a dramatic statement, especially with my chandelier floor lamp in front of it. 
I had many e-mails asking for dorm tips, and I think one of the best ways to make your room unique is to shop in various places. As cute as a bedroom set up might look in Ikea or Bed Bath & Beyond, it's usually a bit tacky or overwhelming when everything has been purchased and set up in your own space. I shopped at Bed Bath & Beyond, Home Goods, Target, Neiman Marcus, Ikea, Amazon, Etsy, Macy's, Pottery Barn, and Overstock.com. The easiest way to elevate your style is to avoid the matchy-matchy look. 
Book Shelf
To avoid making my room cluttered I really tried not to fill every nook and cranny of my bookshelf. It's so easy to fall into the trap of acquiring more junk just because you have the space to put it. Not only does this hurt your wallet, but it is so easy to become a disorganized mess. 

Decor Wall
I told myself that if I couldn't find a reasonably organized manner to keep my accessories organized then I was going to have to get rid of some of them. I decided to pin things onto my bulletin board (that I first covered with white paper). It makes getting dressed a little easier when I have all my options in front of me like this. 

Pillows
I am OBSESSED with the two smaller white pillows. They are made of this beautiful velvet that has a slight sheen. And they are sooo soft. Me and my friends Casey and Lauren joke that they feel like a boy's head after a buzz cut... a little weird, but very accurate. 

Huge thanks to my pal and Delta Gamma sister, Kiera Wood for shooting the pictures for this post. When she holds a camera she is an amazing goddess queen. 

5 Little Things: A Better Snapshot Into my Every Day Life

September 24, 2014

breakfast shoot
{Picture from my brunch shoot with my photography bestie, Jolie Greenstone}

barnard polish
{The campus related nail polish sold at the Barnard store}

YoQuandra1
{When everyone in my literature class coincidentally wore jean jackets we decided a photoshoot was a must}

Cod and Arugula
{Thyme cod on wild arugula drizzled with olive oil-- an easy lunch I whipped together in 10 minutes}

Me and Nature copy copy

The Better Martha Does High Tea

September 16, 2014

I can't believe I forgot to share with you my favorite part about visiting D.C: Lady Camilla's, this fabulous little spot for tea in Georgetown. It is filled with pink and begs for all visitors to wear a floral tea dress (though not required). I chose to get a pot of English breakfast tea, some macarons, a mini cupcake, finger sandwiches, and a couple scones. This was surprisingly filling and kept us energized for an day of shopping and exploring.
bridget teacup teacake copy savories scone with jam pouring tea Tea location1 tea location 2
Ever since my first step out the door of Lady Camellia's, I have been OBSESSED with all things relating to high tea: tea sets, fancy tea leaves, tea dresses, finger sandwiches.... If you don't believe mu just see my high tea Pinterest page.

Styled with Mom: A Better Fashion Post

September 02, 2014

Styled with Mom
Going to college on the other side of the country means that visits from mom are extra special. I don't know how she does it but every time we reunite, I'm re-hit with the reality that she is way more stylish than me. Right now is especially a great time for a mom appreciation post. Today she did a lot of driving and heavy lifting to get me moved into college. She was even a really good sport when I asked her to make my bed and iron my sheets. 
Mom on Bridge
Dress: BCBGMAXAZRIA (sold out) | Shoes: Brian Atwood | Bag: Fendi (old) | Watch: Vintage Rolex

We were visiting New Hampshire for a couple days, and this was the outfit my mom chose for exploring the town and doing a little nature walk. I know right? My mom is a total glamazon (she normally hates heels under 3 inches just fyi).
Mom's Fendi Mom's Rolex
I adore my mom's Rolex. She's had it since my 30 year-old brother was in first grade, and it still looks amazing. For some reason all the watches I see in stores now day are so flashy: too big, too bulky, too sparkly. I'm really attracted to the simplicity and practicality of this watch, and how its style relevancy isn't questioned 25 years later. 
Sexy Mom Legs momtwirling
We found this cute little road surrounded by woods and hills. My mom is so silly and started twirling a la Maria Rainer style. Also her legs are fabulous...but then again I would expect nothing less of a 31 year-old.

The Better Martha Takes Washington D.C.

August 26, 2014

moniquetakesdc
{The view from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial}

This past week it took a lot of willpower to abstain from posting a million photos to Instagram. I was visiting friends in D.C and it was marvelous. It's the only city I've been in where every building is seriously significant. I was walking down the street with Bridget and she pointed out the Supreme Court, the National Archives, and the Library of Congress all within a few minutes of each other--and this was just a few minutes before she took me to the capitol building. 
pointy thing
{The Washington Monument}

I had an incredible time hitting all the necessary tourist spots like the White House, the Lincoln Memorial, the Washington Monument, the Declaration of Independence, and so many more places that allowed me to totally geek out. 
hey there mr. lincoln
{Mr. Lincoln at his Memorial}

thecapitol
{The right side of the U.S. Capitol Building}

townhouses
{Capitol Hill townhouses}

I'm absolutely in love with the brick townhouses and their small flower-filled front yards. It was so refreshing to be out of the city and in a place that was spacious and clean! I could not get over the fact that the subway stations were so tidy, and everyone was so normal compared to the eccentricities that I normally see commuting on the NQR.
white house
{The White House}

I visited the buildings of dollar bills, Frank Underwood, and Olivia Pope, but in all honesty I came to D.C. to spend as many hours as possible with Bridget. Between trips to the World War II Memorial and the National Treasury, she took me to her favorite bakeries, cafes, and book stores.
sandwich
{Monster sandwich from the WTF Cafe located right by the White House}

The best moments from my trip were the late night games of Boggle, the delicious morning omelettes, and the endless cups of English breakfast tea. Bridget is  a full fledged tea addict, and while my new obsession is not quite on her level, it is getting pretty close. cookingeggs
{The best omelette ever in the making} 
dc adventures copy 2
{My schedule for the week}


Styled with Bridget: A Better Fashion Post

August 18, 2014

Styled with Bridget 1
This week I've been in Washington D.C visiting my college friend, Bridget. When we first met, I was instantly struck by her kind spirit and old soul. She's the only person I know who reads the classics; handwrites letters; and looks up movie times in the newspaper. I was so excited to photograph her because her personality is so perfectly captured by her style (and also she's just so cute and charming).
Styled with Bridet 2
Her outfit was perfect for a day of sightseeing and afternoon tea. D.C. summers tend to be hot and humid, but Bridget serves as a perfect reminder that dressing well in the heat isn't as difficult as most people (including myself) make it out to be.
Styled with Bridet necklace Bridget-Gif Bridget at intersection Styled with Bridget Sunglasses Styled with Bridget Barret

Keep an eye out for more posts about Bridget and my trip to Washington D.C.



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