Rainy Day Remedy

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Rainy summer days are a constant problem for me. Because I live in Boston, rain also means hurricane winds, which renders even the strongest of umbrellas useless. It also means dire humidity that makes most jackets insufferable. Fortunately, my pals over at Wellensteyn at the Wrenthem Outlets had the answer. This trench is adorable, lightweight, and extremely functional in summer rain. rainydayremedy3I’ve gotten more compliments on this trench in the two months I’ve had it than any other coat. It’s the perfect blend of classic and contemporary and works with any outfit. I roll up the sleeves when it’s extra hot to allow for some air circulation while keeping the rain off. rainydayremedy2

Not only is the jacket stylish, it’s super light weight and very durable. I put my coats through hell and high water, they’re easily my most mistreated clothing item. This piece has held up to every coffee spill, every time I’ve thrown it on the ground during a shoot, and every time it’s doubled as a pillow on a long flight. Speaking of which, it’s exceptionally wrinkle resistant. rainydayremedyrainydayremedy4

Coat: Wellensteyn, Dress:Forever21, Shoes: Nine West

Photos by Stephanie Krist.

Please note: Wellensteyn provided me with this coat, however, all opinions are my own.

Sunday Snapshots

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sundaysnapshotscollage7242016From left to right: 1) Argentinean alfajores I made for an office party. 2) I could eat oysters all day every day in this weather. 3) Making Modern on view at the MFA Boston. 4) I once interviewed Sheila Hicks while she frantically disassembled a finished exhibit, much to the curator’s distress. She’s been one of my favorites ever since. 5) Poolside with Junot Diaz. 6) I can’t go anywhere without my Moleskine planner.

Tie-dyed Up

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I’m all about utilizing garments in new and interesting ways. So when I found this maternity shirt in a dressing room, I immediately thought it would make a nice dress. I made a few alterations to take in the sides and accessorized with a leather harness to give the flowy ensemble some edge.

Art-music-9Art-music-7Art-music-13Perks of shooting with Rebecca Isenhart Photography, you sometimes get an adorable, fluffy co-model. Art-music-14

Shirt: JC Penny, Harness: ASOS, Flats: Nine West, Corgi Ring: Gifted

Photos by Rebecca Isenhart Photography.

New Kid on the Block

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The Boston Public Library just got a major makeover, and like the female lead in a ‘90s romantic comedy, it’s now one of the cool kids. The architecture team at William Rawn Associates, who also designed the East Boston and Mattapan branches, took the almost 50-year-old Johnson Building and remade it for a 21st century audience. The previously dark and dingy façade now opens up to the street, and features a café, an on-site WGBH studio, and hi-tech search tools. Most importantly, the design encourages people of all walks of life to utilize the space. Architect Clifford Gayley says, “The words ‘Free to All,’ which are carved into the original building, are the core of what a library is. It’s meant to be a part of the city, a part of life.”

Aesthetically, the new Johnson wing is a contemporary re-interpretation of the classic design of its neighboring McKim building. The William Rawn team drew inspiration for the Johnson color scheme from the famous Sargent murals in the old wing of the library. “Color was a very important way to create visual energy,” says Gayley. The rich primary colors, blue, orange, green, and red to name a few, give the space an engaging and modern vibe. Warmth was a key word in the design process. Boylston Hall, the entry space of the Johnson building, features a rich limestone imported from Hungary and an intricate, scalloped wood ceiling to bring a comfortable, natural element to the interior space.IMG_2674

The new building isn’t just inspired by art; it features many pieces of the BPL’s extensive collection. Notably, the fiction series features several busts of famous authors such as Mark Twain, Maya Angelou, and Edgar Allan Poe. Overlooking fiction from the mezzanine sits a copper griffin that once resided on the roof of the McKim building – another tie between old and new. The fiction section itself has been re-organized for better reader access. Now it’s divided by genre, like a bookstore, and then alphabetically by last name of author. This allows visitors to more easily browse subjects they’re interested in. Still aren’t sure what to read? The literary awards wall shows the names of Nobel Prize and Pulitzer winning authors, a kind of in-house “trending” page.

Boylston Hall now features floor to ceiling windows, flooding the space with natural light and inviting visitors in from the street. On the street itself, natural landscaping draws visitors in and a free-standing table complete with phone-charging station gives bibliophiles an outdoor space to relax in. Boylston Hall boasts a glass elevator and a clear, open pathway from Johnson to McKim. This ease-of-access between the two buildings is a huge upgrade from the dark maze of stairs and hallways it previously took to get from one section to another.IMG_2670

In a genius effort to connect with the millennial demographic, a “Shelfie” station has been installed by the central information desk. Here you can take a selfie on a large LCD screen, which will paint your photo with lines from your choice of several classic books. Your library card lets you save, send, or share the photo. The young, hip crowd is further wooed by the in-house Catered Affair coffee bar (yes, you can now eat and drink in non-carpeted library spaces) and the remote WGBH broadcast studio, which will begin filming segments at the library in August.

For historic buildings like the BPL, it’s a constant battle to keep things both relevant and reverent to a storied past. Every inch of the 1-million square foot Johnson building has fresh lipstick and a slinky new dress. It achieves that illusive balance between old and new. Gayley says, “We’re letting Boylston Hall be of its time. It’s crisp, contemporary, and free to all.”

Check out the full story on the Bay State Banner website.

The Library Look

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Perhaps it’s my lifelong propensity for reading, or a woefully optimistic misinterpretation of Nancy Drew books, but sometimes I dress like a librarian. I was drawn to this bow-tie blouse because of my Gossip Girl days and paired it with a zip-down pencil skirt for a mix of classic and edgy. The look takes a dowdy aesthetic and makes it modest, but visually interesting. thelibrarylookView More: http://stephanieritaphoto.pass.us/celina-juneView More: http://stephanieritaphoto.pass.us/celina-juneView More: http://stephanieritaphoto.pass.us/celina-june

Shirt and Blouse: Primark, Shoes: Nine West

Photos by Stephanie Krist.

Jaded

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In my second styling of this jewel-tone dress, I’ve kept it in its original form, but I added a silver choker necklace for some edge. This look could be dressed up or down for the office, date night, or lunch with friends. Best of all, it’s comfortable and easy. A one-stop-shop for a pulled together outfit. What do you think of this look compared to my first styling as a shirt?

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Dress: Forever21, Flats: Nine West, Necklace: Vintage

Photos by Stephanie Krist.