Tag Archives: la

L.A. Lady

NYDJ Summer 2015 photographed in Los Angeles, California

I was recently introduced to one of the most successful jean brands in the country, NYDJ. The relationship started when they sent me a pair of jeans to try out, which have now become my go-to photoshoot pants not only for their comfort but the fact they stretch slightly, making moving more functional and my job easier. I also like the fact they are slightly high-waisted and when she complimented me on the fit I knew there was something here.

Furthering the relationship, NYDJ sent me on a west coast adventure around Southern California with a suitcase full of their new summer looks to try on and wear out. For a week I lived in NYDJ and here is what I have to say – not only do the clothes travel well, they are easy to dress up or dress down making the unexpected travel plans manageable while still appearing completely put together on the outside and incredibly comfortable on the inside. What you don’t see is how they manage to do that. On the inside of the dresses they have a built in second layer that is similar to shape-wear, but not uncomfortable or constricting. It makes a flattering support system that keeps everything smooth and pretty while still allowing you to move, eat, sit and play with ease. It actually gave me more confidence while wearing dresses that showed off my natural figure.

I’ll be honest, this was a brutal winter in New York causing me at one point to actually take a cab four blocks home because I was too cold to carry on. This, in contrast to the endless snapchats of L.A. friends wearing tank tops and having backyard pizza parties in mid-February, was just cruel. I was happy to get out of New York which still seems to be slowly awakening into spring. I wanted to be surrounded by a color other than gray and something to do other than work 28 hours a day. Funny enough, I’m not the only one that feels this way. While in L.A. I woke up to a handful of texts, emails, tweets, snaps saying “did you read this!?”,  with a link to a New York Times article on just the sentiment I was living. It also didn’t help the case for New York that we were able to borrow a Jaguar F-Type convertible and spent the entire week with the top down, wind in our hair, and that sweet smell of honeysuckle wafting by.

Here are some of my favorite NYDJ summer looks and the great discoveries to be had along that gorgeous California coast….

  NYDJ Summer 2015 photographed in Los Angeles, California

Above and below- watching the sunset in a Jaguar F-Type convertible in the canyons in NYDJ’s Rosella Stretch Crepe Drape Dress, Phillips House earrings, and Phillips House “Love Always” bracelet before heading to dinner at Giorgio Baldi

  NYDJ Summer 2015 photographed in Los Angeles, California NYDJ Summer 2015 photographed in Los Angeles, California

We chose to stay in Santa Monica, just a few blocks from the ocean, at the Palihouse which we loved. Below, leaving in NYDJ’s Maia Jumpsuit (FAVORITE), Maiyet gold bangle, Schutz Juliana heels and Kotur clutch to meet friends at Jones Hollywood for a cocktail and then live show of our NYC friend that happened to be out in L.A. Matt Sucich.

  NYDJ Summer 2015 photographed in Los Angeles, California     NYDJ Summer 2015 photographed in Los Angeles, California (more…)

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Backyard Pizza Party!

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I met Gaby a few years ago on a trip through Chile and then later we were travel companions again through Brazil. We bonded over Pisco Soursred lips, and avocados (Gaby is VERY serious about them). I taught her the term “on brand” as a way to get in or out of any situation, and she taught me that slutty brownies are the greatest thing on Earth. Gaby is that west coast girl I fantasize I could be- healthy, fit, tan, on it, bikes everywhere, doesn’t drink eight cups of coffee a day like I do, and makes the most amazing food on the internets.

When she found out we were heading west to LA this week she called up her best friends and creative soul mates: food photographer Matt Armendariz and food & prop stylist Adam Pearson and threw together a backyard pizza party in our honor. Knowing that Ecco Domani pairs well with pizza parties, Kevin and I brought over a mirage of wines by Ecco Domani to pair with the different style pizzas from the red Merlot to the Pinot Grigio and ended the night sipping on the sweet prosecco by the outdoor fire.

Being a New Yorker, anytime I get to go to someone’s freestanding home is thrilling, and this backyard setup was one of the best I’ve ever been to. Matt and Adam have been working together for 10 years as a photography & styling duo for multiple cookbooks and industry giants such as the Food Network and in the new media world for places like Gaby’s site. Aside from curating a beautiful historic 1920’s Long Beach Home, running a successful studio that banks on editorial style and natural light, they were also married seven years ago on the first day same sex marriage became legal in California.

Cooking, eating, and hanging out with three major foodies comes with a bounty of tips and new recipes to update your traditional pizza. Pizza is one of mine and Kevin’s favorite at-home meals which typically occurs on Sunday night paired with a bottle of red wine and Game of Thrones. Of course it would be different taking this pizza party out west with old friends and new. Matt and Adam set up a pizza topping station where you could customize your own pie while we all hung out, caught up on our world travels, enjoying that perfect LA weather with our California sun kissed skin.

It’s nice to be reminded that the best things in life are shared memories with friends over good food and great wine. I hope this inspires you to have your own pizza party with friends or family and try out one of the recipes below and, of course, any pizza can only made better with a bottle of Ecco Domani.

 {PS- I brought one of my old Polaroid cameras some impossible film to take some instant party pics, the kind you can hold on to and rediscover one day in an old shoe box. You’ll see some of the moments developed below!} 

Scroll down for new recipe ideas and pizza cooking tips Adam & Gaby!

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For your pizza party, arrange jars of a variety of ingredients for guests to mix and match their favorite flavors and try to add some surprises such as roasted corn, jalapeño, green onions and soy-rizo (soy version of chorizo!).

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We always make our own dough, it’s so easy and makes the whole pizza process even more fun. Gaby’s recipe for homemade pizza dough(more…)

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Soniat House

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When we were planning our travels to New Orleans to shoot our latest inspiring woman, Christina Graci, I knew I wanted to stay someplace magical, a true “N’awlins” gem: and I found it in the French Quarter’s Soniat House.

We fell in love with the warm Southern charm, the friendly hotel cat, and of course the amazing breakfasts. Now, you go down south for the music and the cocktails, but the food was the shining star of this trip.

We loved the classic French Quarter fare of Marti’s and the modern casual elegance of Lilette in the beautiful Garden District’s Magazine Street. If we are talking about simple pleasures, a cocktail (or two or three) at Bouligny Tavern is the perfect way to end the day in the Big Easy. And you know… I can never come to New Orleans without always stopping in for a few of these….

All of this is barely scratching the surface of all this great American city has to offer…New Orleans, I’ll be back for you…

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Christina’s Guide to New Orleans

Yesterday we heard all about the life of our Southern muse, Christina Graci…and today we get insider knowledge about all her favorite New Orleans hot spots! A city so full of culture, life, music, color, food and amazing shopping, it’s no wonder it’s one of the fastest growing cities in America. So here’s the scoop!

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Above & Below~ Christina is wearing a vintage dress from an estate sale, shoes by Roger Vivier, vintage tassel earrings, a vintage ocelot leopard belt, and HopeConfidence, and Stability Charms by Pandora Jewelry.

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New Orleans Museum of Art

“Museums are my favorite places to go alone or with my brother, Chad.  I am fascinated with history and culture so I truly find visiting the museum enlightening and so peaceful.  The architecture of NOMA is beautiful too.  It is located in City Park and has great exhibits.  What more could you ask for?!”

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