September 29, 2017

You Asked, I answered! {Q&A Part I}

Denim Jacket: Levi’s (size small & part of the Shopbop sale) | Denim: Mother (part of the Shopbop sale) | Tee: Vince | Shoes: Manolo Blahnik | Belt: Saint Laurent

First off, thank you for taking out the time to leave me a comment or send me a DM with your questions. I genuinely enjoyed reading them as much as I enjoyed answering. I find it so interesting to see what you’re all curious about, whether it’s about blogging, motherhood, beauty or something a bit more personal. I’m breaking off these Q&A’s  into a few posts, including a separate one to answer all of the motherhood questions (there were a lot of those) so be sure to tune back in on Wednesday for Part II.

For now, lets start off with these!

Q: What are your go to healthy meals and snacks? Do you meal prep? Do you set a budget for  grocery shopping? 

In the past year or so, I’ve been eating more plant based because physically and mentally, it makes me feel better. I’m not vegan or a vegetarian, but I eat “clean” 80% of the time. So with that being said, I eat a lot of roasted veggies and I often make big batches of sweet potatoes, carrots, zucchini and basically, anything I can throw into the oven or lightly sauté on the stove-top . It’s also so easy to do this for Nate since he lives for roasted sweet potatoes. I also make big batches of quinoa, buckwheat and for brown rice, I usually just buy the frozen kind from Whole Foods so it’s easy to whip up. I cannot live without avocados and I probably eat a full one every single day. For snacks, almond butter on rice cakes, nuts, hummus and granola bars.

However, I do still indulge. I love wine, chocolate and coffee and have all three quite regularly. Life is too short so while I want to feel healthy (and look good!) I don’t plan to give up the little things that make me happy.

I don’t set a budget, but I probably should be more mindful of this! Not just with food but with everything.

Q: One of my favorite parts about your blog & style is how seamlessly you mix high & low brands. I would love your thoughts on when you should invest in something vs buying the more fast-fashion options!

So I thought long and hard about this and for my investment pieces, I wanted to think of the pieces that I bought several years ago and still love and wear. Or pieces that might be on the newer side, but that I wear over and over again. For me, my smart investment list includes: my Gucci loafers & slides (bought this year but cost per wear! worth every single penny), black leather pants that I live in all winter, a black leather jacket, my Chanel bags, especially my maxi caviar. I know it’s huge, but I love it as much as the day I bought it (I’m 5’7″ so it also works with my frame). Also, my camel coat, a few cashmere sweaters in neutral colors and my black over the knee boots.

I won’t spend “designer money” on super trendy items. There are instances that I still want to wear certain trends and have fun with it (especially being in my industry!) but I’m not trying to spend a ton of money on white or patterned boots. I usually ask myself “do I think I’ll be into this in a few months from now?” and usually, I know what pieces will have a quick shelf-life.

Q: You and I both have a very similar style, especially when it comes to bags. What do you look for mostly in a bag? What would you consider to be your absolute favourite? Or your go-to when you are browsing? I find myself always drawn to cross-body, velvet, and classics, so I’d love to hear how you approach bags!

Out of all of the bags that I own or have owned and sold, my Chanel bags are my #1 favorite followed by my Celine bags. I tend to get sick of bags quickly but with my Chanel, that’s rarely the case. I know they’re a fortune (especially these days), but if I could own one single bag, It would probably be a Chanel caviar or a Celine. I love my maxi because it fits a ton and when I leave for the day, I need my entire life! But now with a toddler, I need cross-body bags, so I definitely tend to wear those a lot more. I guess it really depends on where I’m going and what I have planned for that day. I’m currently obsessing over the smaller version of the Chanel Trendy Bowler (followed by the Chanel backpack). I’ve tried it on several times and cannot stop thinking about it. I love that it has a strap, but can also be worn as top-handle, something I find so incredibly chic! For a long time, I couldn’t stop thinking about the old medium boy in so black, but the bowler has taken over. What do you guys think: bowler or backpack?!

Q: What are (is) your latest designer bag(s) you’ve acquired?  

This velvet Gucci was my latest, but to be honest, I’m thinking of selling it so I can put it towards the above mentioned bag. It’s not that I don’t love it, but in order for me to justify the Chanel, some things must go. I know that the next question is going to be “where do you sell your things?” and lately, I’ve been posting some items on @BrooklnBlondeShop. I’ve also sold things on Facebook groups (pertaining to the specific designer), Vestiaire Collective and The RealReal. Before I list the Gucci elsewhere, if anyone is interested, please email me. It’s currently sold out and hard to get!

Q: Since you are a great inspiration for me I would love to know who your fashion idols are!

My style icons are Kate Moss, Victoria Beckham, Emmanuelle Alt, and lately, I’ve been having a major girl crush on Morgan Stewart’s denim and heel style.

Q: I love your home and your new backyard is amazing!!! Do you rent or own?

We own! Keith owned a condo (where we lived previously) way before the Brooklyn market exploded and we were fortunate enough to sell and put it towards our current home. That helped tremendously!

Q: I’m sensing that you feel that time is starting to fly by too fast; another birthday, etc.. That being said, have you ever reflected on how long/up to what age you will be a blogger?

YES! Time is definitely flying by. Especially watching a child grow up! But, to be honest, I haven’t really thought about how long I’ll be blogging and what is next. For now, I’m enjoying it and thankful to be able to do this! I know that when my time is up, I’ll move on to something else that is fitting, probably in a different arena of the  industry.

Q: Can you talk a little about how you think about spending on clothes/shoes bags? Do you budget a certain amount for the season? for the year? How do you keep your shopping in check? How much of the stuff is free?

To be completely honest, being someone who often documents their outfits, I definitely feel the need to “keep up with it.” My thought process on what I buy is probably different than your average “fashion interested” person. Sometimes, I see an item and I think “oh my goodness! I would love to shoot this coat on this beautiful street in the West Village.” Sometimes, it’s for the purpose of the photo and the photography and other times, it’s a fun trend that I’m interested in styling and sharing with you all. There are instances where I get pieces gifted, although not as many as you would think. At this point, I don’t want extra stuff in my house, so if a brand emails me and I’m not into it, I’ll politely turn it down. I get way more beauty products sent than actual clothes and accessories.

For bags and shoes, even before I had a blog, those have always been my biggest splurges and weaknesses. If I’m no longer into something I spent a lot of money on, I’ll try to sell it on one the places I’ve mentioned earlier. Even if I make half of my money back, it’s better than nothing. That allows me to put that money towards a new purchase, which eases the pain. Keep in mind, I would never (ever!) sell something that was gifted to me.

For clothing and products that I don’t wear or am no longer into, I’ll either donate it to a woman’s shelter I’m involved in or share it with my friends and family. I do donate a lot of stuff!

That wraps todays Q&A portion. I know I didn’t get to all of your questions, but I promise to continue this series, which I’m really excited about. Check back in on Wednesday!

Wishing you all the best Friday and weekend!

xoxo,

Helena

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11 comments

  • RHyne

    Hi Helena,

    Long time reader and admirer of you and your blog! I love your honesty and style and you have definitely been an inspiration to me as I started my own blog journey a couple months ago!

    I am EXTREMELY interested in your teal velvet Gucci bag. I have been looking for it since it came out! I am an ovarian cancer survivor (diagnosed ta 21) and teal is the awareness color so I need this in my life!!! please email me at rhinostylefiles@gmail.com

    Thank you!!

    Rhyne Callens

  • Aya

    I love how you give a chance to your followers to get to know you by answering all these questions !! I don’t know you that much, and this gives me the chance to connect with you, I really like that !! Thank you for sharing

    https://ayamastour.wordpress.com/2017/09/26/sammer-is-over-so-heres-a-goodbye-outfit/

  • Francine

    Hi Helena,
    LOVE this post! Your answers are exactly why your site is the first thing I check every morning.

    Here’s a question for you…

    I imagine that you work from your home office quite a bit. What do you wear? Do you get “ready” for a day behind your laptop? I run my business through my home and make a point to great dressed (always with zippers. easy to pack the pounds wearing lycra!).

    Enjoy the weekend and keeps those amazing posts coming!

    Francine

  • Mireia

    Absolutely love it!

    Mireia from TGL
    https://thegoldlipstick.com/

  • Magda

    Great post, thanks for sharing!

    http://www.gloryofthesnow.com

  • nicole sioui

    Enjoyed reading all the Q&A’s. Getting to better know the person that I tune into every other day feels (for the lack of a better word ) “reassuring”…. not sure if that makes any sense??? Sharing so many things about your life – and with so many people is a courageous thing to do. I admire you for being so candid.

  • Jade

    Love the shoes!

    http://adaywithoutyesterday.blogspot.com

  • Naty Diaw

    love this look
    xx
    https://www.closettostreet.com

  • Cityrocka Perry

    I TOTALLY get it. The Chanel Trendy Bowler is EVERYTHING. I think that it will be a nice addition to your collection. Not sure how you have the strength to let any other bags go really! LoL.

    Fashion Accessories Blog Editor
    https://itgirlaccessories.com
    Cityrocka Perry

  • Lorna

    Thank you for answering! My Celine is one of my go to bags as well, one I could never part with! I have the Mini Luggage in Dune. But I do adore my Chanel, I have a Boy in Velvet Bordeaux and a WOC in black leather. ADORE them! In regards to the choices you mentioned, I do like the new Bowler shape too, it’s super cute, but maybe if you wanted something completely different, opt for the backpack? It’s probably super versatile and since you can be completely hands free with it, might be worth it! That being said, definitely go with your heart. I try to make rational and practical decisions based on what I already own and more often than not, I regret that choice and wish I had chosen the one I originally wanted, ha ha.

    https://raindropsofsapphire.com

  • Adriana

    Love this Q&A series! So good to know you a little bit better!
    xx

    The Black Blush

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