Thursday, June 6, 2013

let's address some things.

yes, i am moving again. hopefully next month. i feel like ellen but in a very different tax bracket.

i've been gathering lots of inspiration for the new place even though i don't know where said place is yet...
do we see a trend?

so anyway. on to the "things." i keep getting asked why oh why am i moving.

i agree it seems odd after all the work that went into making this place what it is (and what it is is mighty fine). but for those of you who only pop in on occasion and did not notice the subtle details and, well, let's call them chaaanges throughout the decorating (and blogging) process, what was once "our new place" did in fact become "my place" over the course of the past year. while i foolishly assumed it would be glaringly obvious, most people had no idea what was going on. a few commenters asked what happened to the cute "his and her office." another query: "your boyfriend doesn't mind all the pink?" then my favorite comment on my home tour: "didn't you move in here with your boyfriend?" of course, some of you did realize it right away. i received several lovely emails from readers telling me they had a hunch about what was going on, and i am so so grateful for your kindness and support. and if i'm being totally honest, i never wanted to address it and was hoping it would eventually just go away. but now because it is quite ridiculous i'm moving again so soon, and because i love ya'll and feel like we're good friends who meet a few mornings a week for coffee and chit chat, i want to give you the very short story of my life these past 6+ months. here goes. well, ladies and gentleman (i assume there's at least one male reading), as it sometimes goes in life... my ex and i, well, we split up. yes. bloggers break up too. despite what our instagram feeds look like, it's not always puppies, pretty apartments, paris proposals, coastal weddings, and candy-colored baby showers before the age of 25 in blogworld (although i admit, it does sometimes seem that way). sometimes shtuff happens behind the computer screen that we'd rather not type out and hit publish. can you blame me? trying to deal with personal hardships on my own is tough enough. so the thought of letting dozens, hundreds, or thousands of readers–whatever it may be– weigh in? i not only couldn't do that... i didn't want to. i wanted that part of my life to stay private and separate. especially because for me, and most bloggers i'd say, our blogs are our happy place. where we go to escape and focus on the good, the light, the fun. (hence a serious lack of posting for a couple months there. still very very sorry about that.) and i can only assume it's where ya'll come to escape. not to hear my grievances. but do not fret... it's been a while now. my ex moved out around thanksgiving. yes, the holidays were a bummer. but then a new lovely lady roommate and good friend moved into the second bedroom and things were bright and cheery again. but now she too moved out and is on to new adventures in baltimore. which again leaves me alone in a sprawling two bedroom apartment far far away from all of my friends and family. not to mention it's a $20 cab ride just to get home safely from a weekend night rendezvous downtown. plus i am ready for a change. and a cozier place to call home. one with less empty rooms and closets used to store stuff from our last everygirl styling project.

this is literally the view from my desk right now. see what i mean?

i'll also be turning 28 years old in october and have never lived alone. danielle tells me this is a great experience for a person and that everyone should do it. i agree. i've always had roommates as that is what the budget situation has allowed. but i've been planning and saving up for this and am excited at the thought of the newfound independence that will come from spending so many moments with no one to talk to but my pups and be with my own thoughts. all of those quiet, simple, every day happenings–like making coffee in the morning, or getting ready to go out on the weekend, or watching late night tv before forcing myself to brush my teeth and crawl into bed. i suspect i'll still live on the outskirts of the city since the rental market is borderline terrifying these days. but my pups and i will take it over and make it home, mirror ball in tow. and quite frankly, i am so so excited as thoughts of creating a perfect lil' lady haven a la this or this prance through my head. but perhaps slightly less shabby chic. so i hope this answers all of your questions or suspicions or whatever the case may be. i am good and well and ready for a change! stay tuned for future adventures...

second–and far more important, i might add–everything at j.crew is currently 25% off in stores or with the promo code SUMMER online. i picked up a few pink, black, and white somethin-somethin's because... drumroll... i am taking a much anticipated vacation the week after next! i'm heading to south carolina where i'll finally get to see charleston for the first time. i fully suspect i'll love it. will be staying in isle of palms but please–any recommendations for the surrounding areas are wholeheartedly welcomed!


  1. you, i love. i miss you, my little lady friend. ENJOY your vacation! you deserve it. and danielle is right. living alone is :).

    hugs.kisses.theworks. missyouguys.

  2. Living on your own will be a great experience for you! Something every Everygirl should do, in fact. I'm sure you'll enjoy, and I can't wait to see how you decorate it.

    As for Charleston- LOVE that place. And I know you will too. It's so happy and bright and you leave there feeling like everything is better. Enjoy!

  3. I think that living alone really is something that everyone should do. It's one of those situations you can learn a lot more about yourself in. I think you will find it to be a really great and exciting adventure. I can't wait to see how you decorate and I hope you have a great time in SC!

  4. Thank you for sharing. I assumed but preferred not to comment. As far as the "outskirts", well I live in Chicago but so close to O'hare it really is almost Park Ridge. The good thing, I live within walking distance of both a Starbucks and the blue line. While, I live in a huge 2 bedroom, there are stunning one bedrooms around here and yes, the quiet is amazing. I can have my windows open all night and hear not one peep. You will love the outskirts, I learned to and would never move closer to the Loop. Good luck with everything. You are doing great!

  5. Ditto Yanira's first sentence. I'm sorry you had/have to endure the hurt, especially so publicly. I admire your persistence in creativity in spite of it all, though. I really appreciate that during hard times you've shown how to keep working hard and fostering creativity while taking care of yourself. And I truly think you'll adore living alone; it's an addictive pleasure. Good luck with the apartment search!

  6. love this post. i always assumed but i never wanted to say anything since that's your business. i cannot wait to see your next place. it will be a great adventure! :)

  7. Sorry to hear that hun! I have been going through a rough patch (that patch is spreading into a lawn right now) with my bf. We too also own a house so it makes things very complicated. Not sure what the future brings but we shall see. It's tough and I feel your pain, but thanks for sharing. It does help knowing other people go through these things too!
    Best of luck in life, love and new home!!

  8. Thanks so much for sharing your experience, I know it probably wasn't easy to type and publish! You are such a strong woman and I'm sure that going it your own will turn out to be an amazing adventure. I too can't wait to see what you do with a new place and hope you have a blast on vacation!

    Chelsea & The City

  9. I absolutely LOVED living on my own. I love being married and living with my husband, but sometimes I miss having every room painted pink and not having to decide who gets to control the remote.

    Living on my own was a wonderful experience that really made me grow up and REALLY learn what I was good at (and not so good at). You'll love it!

  10. Thanks for sharing---like others we saw clues and knew you would share what you wanted. You are strong----maybe you didn't know:)
    I have always lived solo----with a cat for 10 yrs and one before that. It is so nice to have space of my own.....I know I appreciate it and don't really know if I can live with someone---that's okay since I will deal with a change if it were to happen.

  11. I'm sorry to hear about your breakup. Unfortunately it is a part of life.

    I can't believe you've never lived alone?!?!?!? YOU MUST!! It is one of life's great pleasures. You'll become addicted to it. It is so nice to have a whole space of your own. Peace and quiet when you want it and the ability to do whatever you want!!

    Can't wait to see the new place!

  12. Excited to see the new place! The 3rd pic with the pink 2/3 of the way up the wall is killer. I want that room now.

    Living alone is the BEST in many ways. It's nice to find someone to share a home with, but I still miss living alone at times. I think (hope!) you'll enjoy it.

  13. This was a moving post to read- I think I speak for most of your readers that we respect your choice to keep personal things personal, and we're also here with understanding and support b/c we think you ROCK!
    Can't wait to see how you decorate the new place. I'm sure it will be beautiful with your touches.

  14. Hi Alaina -
    I love your blog and your spirit and can't wait to see what you do with the next place! I've similarly moved several times in the past few years because of different life events and it sucked at the time but as a fellow design lover there's nothing better to help you move forward than the idea of a new place to decorate! (I certainly don't mean to sound superficial, but it DOES help!) I wish you all the best and look forward to reading all about it. You're amazing xx

  15. Blogs are definitely an escape, but it's nice to get a dose of reality every once and a while. Although I'm sure it was extremely hard to break up and have him move out after the decision to move in together, I'm sure it was the right one for you in the long run. Also - I love all the pink and when we buy a house, my husband is going to have to deal with pale pink walls in at least one room. Real men don't care. :)

  16. Thank you so much for sharing - it is refreshing to know you are "Real" :) All good things on the horizon I'm sure!

    Cant wait to see your new place :)

  17. Your new place will be beautiful - just like you!

  18. As a faithful reader, I knew exactly what had happened and feeling a kinship & sisterhood I thought of you often. I knew why you probably weren't posting as much (but really, isn't that more about The Everygirl?) and why you were probably moving. As a reader, I'm very excited to see how you'll decorate your new place!!! As a virtual girlfriend, I can say that I'm also 27 and have found living alone to be one of the most amazing things I've ever done! Finally, as a Southerner, I can tell you that you are going to absolutely love Charleston and the Isle. You must eat at Toast! and browse through LulaKate on the iconic King St, bottomless mimosas and floral dresses... enough said!!

  19. I had a hunch about the breakup but it seemed quite obvious that you didn't want to address it and I totally respect that. I think that for your readers it was obvious, but for the ones who don't fallow you on the blog, they couldn't have guessed it, you handled it very graciously while still creating some inspiring content. It must have been hard, but you have to keep moving forward and it looks like that's what you're doing ;) I think you're going to enjoy living alone :)

  20. Breaking up is crap, but sometimes life throws you curveballs, and you, Alaina, were/are totally equipped to roll with it. Bravo.

    I'm living on my own for the first time in 29 years (minus a 6-month stint before I moved in with my now-ex), and I 1000% agree with Danielale: It's an important life experience, and I'm so glad you're going in that directions. It'll be great for you, and--selfishly--I cannot wait to see what you do with the place!

    Best of luck on the next step of this crazy adventure!

  21. Alaina, thanks so much for sharing your story! It's never easy to go through a breakup so it's totally understandable that you didn't want to give us a blow by blow on your blog. I think a new apartment will be wonderful for you! I can't wait to see how you decorate it. Have a wonderful vacation - you deserve it!

  22. This was such a great post- I, too, had a hunch, but this was a refreshing (and graceful) way for you to formally come out and say it.
    As far as Charleston goes, I lived there for 6 years and now I live in the Savannah/Hilton Head area- so as far as eating goes, I have (more than) a few reccomendations.

    You MUST try and go to Poe's Tavern on Sullivan's Island which is close to Isle of Palms- their burgers are incredible.

    Taco Spot in West Ashley is one of my absolute favorite places- the grouper tacos are amazing.

    Downtown, Eli's Table and Two Boroughs Larder are always great-

    And off of East Bay and Meeting Street there are Santi's (best Mexican in Charleston)and Tattooed Moose (duck fat fries- yum)

    I could go on for DAYS about the food there, as you can tell.

    Hopefully all of this rainy/stormy weather will be long gone by the time you get to come down here in a couple of weeks because it's been no fun in the lowcountry right now!

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  24. I'm excited for this next season of your life! Only the best things ahead for you. And while I will miss your uptown space, I'd be lying if I said I wasn't through the roof excited about your new Windy City home tour in the coming months--I'm taking the liberty to speak for everyone when I say that! Change is good--c'est la vie!

    And a big fat C-H-E-E-R-S to Charleston! It is a dream. See Troubadour Clothing & grab a bite at Bull Street Gourmet--best Chicken Salad & a Smoked Salmon BLT that is to die for--& Monza--order any of their pizzas & you're sure to be pleased--both on King Street.

    The South will do your Everygirl soul some good.

    Happy Weekend!

  25. WONDERFUL Post.thanks for share and Great post,I really like your article and nice pic

  26. Appreciate you sharing, Alaina. I was saddened to hear of your alluded split, and figured you would share when the time was right. I 100% believe the best is yet to come for you! I didn't live on my own until I was 26 (I'm now 33) best decision ever! You truly learn so much about yourself - and suddenly a life you felt you shared with roomies now becomes your own - and you can do with it whatever you want! An empowering and exciting prospect for sure. Again, I appreciate you sharing. Always remember that 'bringing the pretty' is great, but we read because of you, your voice, your perspective -- and not because of the perfect images (although those are nice too!) Wishing you all the best in your new home hunt. It's gonna be spectacular because it's yours. Xoxo!

  27. Wishing you all the best in your new adventure. I know for sure one thing! All things for a reason. :) Looking forward to your new place and all the beauty you will bring to it.

  28. time to start anew and reclaim YOUR space, lady!

    good luck...chicago apartment hunting can be a pain...

  29. Best of luck on finding a perfect nest Alana :)

    xoxo Aline

  30. I read your blog often- hope you're doing well lady! Excited to see what you do with the new place.

  31. I was in a similar situation... My boyfriend and I lived together for about a year. I found out he was cheating so I moved out on my own not knowing if I would be able to afford it. I cried for a long time. I had no money to go out, my apartment looked pathetic (white plastic chairs in the living room, tv on the floor, etc), and it was winter time in NYC so no one wanted to really go out anyway.
    Eventually my apartment turned into a cozy home that my friends loved and I got back on my feet. In the end, I loved living alone and feel that everyone should do it for at least a year.
    Best of luck to you!!! Life is always an adventure!

  32. you didn't need to mention it, and it is completely no one else's business, but good for you for stating the obvious - you had a break up, you are a human being, you want your private life private, tell everyone to keep their pie holes shut!
    I will agree that living alone is the greatest thing ever - i had a 5 year relationship end in the blink of an eye, never saw it coming, and being all alone in a city by myself for work for months forced me to get better that much faster. you will learn and grow so much in such a short period of time. and yay for a new apartment and new exciting times ahead!

  33. As a faithful reader i kind of assumed that was the case. Getting yourself a new place and freeing yourself of a space that may not hold the best memories could be a good thing. I know its in you to create a wonderful new place. ps Dogs can be lovely company

  34. I think we were all kind of wondering, but as someone who also blogs I completely understand wanting to keep your life separate! I have so many experiences that make me laugh and cry and truly crazy dating stories-but I don't want to share them with all my readers or put it out there on the Internet to one day be found by someone, whoever they may be. I also don't want friends and family and dates to feel like they might be judged in some way that would end up online. You're a wonderful person and you deserve great things-and a great apartment! 28 is a great age to reinvent yourself :) I can't wait to see where you go and what you do!


  35. Girl, this was a great post. I appreciate the fact that you want to keep some of your personal hardships to yourself. My blog is my happy place and I don't always feel right taking my sad and upsetting bits to the entire interwebs (or my few readers, whatever).

    Either way, you go girl, for taking the plunge into solo living! I'm sure you and the pups will love the new place (wherever it may be) and I can't wait to see pics.

    xx, Bubbly in Brooklyn

  36. Congrats in your new adventure, can't wait to see your new digs!

  37. Thank you SO much for being this honest, Alaina. You are right, blogs are our happy places where we escape from our day-to-day lives and seek out the pretty and the pink in life. But in the end, I also read several blogs (yours included), because I can identify with the girls behind them. And it's so hard to identify when you see all those "puppies, proposals, weddings" and other glittery stuff, while your own life can resemble a huge mess :) It can create jealousy, and unrealistic expectations.
    I was in a very difficult situation last year: I broke off my engagement after 4,5 years with my boyfriend, moved to another country (5th one in just 4 years), , I had to learn to live on my own again and start a brand new career. And on top of things, I ended up with an ongoing lawsuit under my belt (all because of that one ex). At first, I was weary to share these things on my blog, but these were such defining moments for my life that I would have felt dishonest if I didn't share at least a portion of these troubles. And the response I got was overwhelming. I didn't expect so many people to express their support, kindness and love, and it still makes me slightly teary-eyed.
    What I'm trying to say through my ramblings is, that I truly appreciate your sincerity, I admire you for your strength and I applaud you for everything you've accomplished so far. Life's not always all pink balloons, and seeing other people dealing with hardships can be as inspiring as seeing their gorgeous homes (yep, still talking about you :)

    I can't wait to see your new home, wherever it will be! And I do agree with Danielle, living alone in your 20's is one of the best things that can happen to you. I was lucky enough to live in Paris all by myself, and it was the happiest time of my life. Can't wait to read about how it goes for you!

    Sending you lots of love

    xx Ivana

    Macarons and Pearls

  38. The combination of informative and quality content is certainly extremely rare with the large amount of blogs on the internet.i found it informative and interesting. Looking forward for more updates.

  39. Alaina, sorry to hear this news. I know for sure you will be stronger and better after this. Good luck and many xoxo chantal



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