My Essentials for a Cozy Weekend
 
The Best Essentials for a Cozy Weekend

image: @allthatisshe

One of my favorite things about cooler weather is taking a cozy hibernation day. The kind of day where your biggest accomplishment might be making pancakes or cracking open a new book. While in theory there are plenty of these wonderfully lazy days between October and March, we seem to only get a couple really good ones each season - so make sure you have the essentials on hand when one comes your way.

1. Cute Pajamas

Since you're going to wear them all day, they can't be the kind that make you feel sloppy - but they must be ridiculously comfortable

2. A Good Book

You know that you're going to binge-watch Killing Eve at some point, but you also know that turning the pages of a physical book (or newspaper, or magazine) is much cozier than ogling a screen.

3. A Big Sweater

Pick the one that goes best with pancakes.

4. A Scented Candle

One of my everyday essentials, and I’d say these fall scents are second only to an actual wood-burning fire.

5. Knit Socks

There shall be no shoes today, only the coziest of socks

6. A Soft Blanket

The one that's secretly your favorite

7. A Face Mask

From DIY versions to the fanciest of sheet masks, you really can't go wrong.

8. Your Favorite Mug

Coffee, tea, cocoa, lemon water - take your pick, and sip it from the prettiest mug around.

 

bon (cozy) week-end!

 
How to See Monaco in One Day
 
 How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants

Updated September 2018

The glittering city-state of the Côte d'Azur, Monaco is nothing if not glamorous. It's steeped in enchanting history and saturated with yachts, sports cars, and designer everything. The entire country spans less than a full square mile, which makes for a perfectly walkable day trip. While you could visit the beach, you'll probably divide your time between dazzling Monte Carlo and charming Monaco-Ville.

How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants
How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants
How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants
 How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants
 How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants

Place du Casino is the heart of Monte Carlo - you'll know you're there when see this fountain surrounded by Café de Paris, the Monte Carlo Casino, the Hôtel de Paris, and the Monte Carlo Pavilions. This square is always bustling with a hubbub of sightseers, casino-goers, and fancy cars. Even a quick bite at Café de Paris is pricey, but the people (and car, and handbag) watching is unlike anything else. 

When your senses are officially overloaded, duck out of the square and make your way to one of Monaco's many gardens. This side of town, you'll find the Jardins de la Petite Afrique and the Jardin Japonais. If you prefer some air-conditioned window shopping, head to Le Metropole - but skip the tiny Ladurée outpost here!

For dinner in Monte Carlo, visit the classic Le Bar Americain at L'Hotel de Paris or Sass Cafe - a  piano bar with a magical terrace.

 How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants
 How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants
 How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants

Leaving Monte Carlo, walk along the coastline towards the harbor to marvel at the incredible views and the sheer number of boats you can see. Catch the Bateau Bus to cross the port, or continue walking around to the Rocher de Monaco - the massive rock that holds Monaco-Ville more than 200 feet above the sea. If you have the time, stop for ice cream along the way and maybe even visit the Jardin Exotique

 How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants
 How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants
 How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants

Monaco-Ville is the country's historic city; the narrow stone streets are lined with colorful buildings, filled with shops and restaurants. Tucked among the winding lanes you'll find Saint Nicholas Cathedral, where Grace Kelly was famously married to the Prince Rainier III in 1956. Across the street are the Jardins de Saint-Martin, where you can see Port de Fontvieille and catch a glimpse of the Princess Grace Rose Garden.

Monaco-Ville is also home to the Prince's Palace, where the changing of the guard takes place at 11:55am each day. During the summer, the elaborate State Apartments inside the palace are open for tours, and you can also visit the private royal collection of antique cars. 

In the heat of the afternoon, the renowned Oceanographic Museum is a perfect escape. The building itself is stunning - a palace rising out of the sea - and each floor is full of exotic sea life and an impressive collection of specimens. After exploring the museum, head up to the rooftop for some of the best views in Monaco.

For dinner in Monaco-Ville, find a table at a streetside cafe like Le Petit Bar or La Tavernatta.

 How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants
 How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants
 How to See Monaco in One Day | A Travel Guide | Things to do in Monte Carlo and Monaco-Ville | If you only have one day to spend in this glamorous city-state, this is your guide to all the sights, shopping and food in Monaco. | Place du Casino, Gardens of Monaco, Prince’s Palace, Oceanographic Museum, Restaurants

what to wear: 

 
Edit: Forest Green
 

emerald velvet accent chair, $598
originally $748, also available in pink and blue.

 

faux malachite hoop earrings, $88
also available in burgundy.

 

floral dress, $294
originally $795

 

color block shoulder bag, $380
also available in solid navy and colorblocked shearling.

 

finely dress, $128
also available in polka dot(!) and red floral print.

 

bamboo side table, $76
originally $95

 

asymmetrical floral midi skirt, $228 
in my cart for fall!

 

globe-trotter 20-inch suitcase $1,560 
find more stylish luggage here.

 

 

How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles
 
 How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see. 
 How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see. 
 How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see. 

Los Angeles had worked its way to the top USA destination of my 2018 Travel Wishlist, and I was so glad to be able to make the trip earlier this year. It was a wonderful escape from a muddy grey spring - even if it was still too cold for surfing lessons - and we were lucky enough to have some local recommendations (thanks, Evan!). We spent five days exploring from downtown to the Venice canals, finding our favorite views, restaurants, art, and shopping. Because I never seem to check everything off my list in any destination, there are a few spots below that I haven't tried yet - looks like time to schedule a return trip!

How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see.
How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see.
How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see.
How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see.
How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see.
 How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see. 
 How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see. 
 How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see. 

Eat & Drink

Bottega Louie: I think it's safe to say this is the prettiest restaurant in Downtown Los Angeles. It's bright and open with a bit of Ladurée flair, and is home to a macaron counter, a bar/café, and a full-service restaurant. Stop by for a drink or lunch, and pick up a box of macarons on your way out.

Porto's Bakery: With a few locations around the city, it's not difficult to add a stop at Porto's to your day. And you should - they just won an award for the best croissant in LA

Croft Alley: Hidden away on Melrose Place, this is a perfect spot for a relaxing patio lunch. They serve a fresh and artful menu, with another location at The Standard Hotel in Hollywood.

Alfred Coffee: This coffee & tea spot has a few different locations, but the cutest one is tucked into an alley on Melrose. They have just about any kind of caffeination you could need, but I stick with an oat milk cappuccino. 

classic & quick: In-N-Out Burger is an absolute must, with plenty of locations - double-single animal style, please! Guisados has a handful of outposts where they serve great tacos.

for sweets: Salt & Straw serves famously delicious handmade ice cream at a few different locations, while Proof Bakery turns out fantastic pastries in Atwater. If you're looking for doughnuts, California Donuts in Koreatown is the place. 

for brunch: Huckleberry Café in Santa Monica serves a beautiful brunch until 5pm, and the popular Sqirl in Silver Lake has breakfast until 4pm daily. 

for dinner: Ostrich Farm (Echo Park; make a reservation), Milo & Olive (Santa Monica; casual), Bäco Mercat (Downtown; global & fun), Alimento (Silver Lake; handmade pasta!), The Rose Café (Venice; also brunch & lunch). 

 

 How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see. 
 How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see. 
 How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see. 
 How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see. 

Do & See

The Broad: The Andy Warhol collection here would be enough to lure me in on it's own, but there's also plenty of Jeff Koons and a couple of Yayoi Kusama's Infinity Mirror Rooms. The Broad is a wonderfully digestible museum where you can see everything in a couple of hours. Admission is free - except to special exhibits - but you'll want to reserve tickets well in advance. 

Angel's Flight: While you're downtown, hop on the newly reopened Angel's Flight funicular train and pretend you're in La La Land. It will bring you up to Grand Avenue near The Broad, or down to Grand Central Market on Hill Street.

The Venice Canals: Between a visit to Venice Beach and shopping on Abbot Kinney Boulevard, take a stroll around the Venice Canals. Small houses are built along the water, lined with sidewalks and moored boats - not so unlike Venice, Italy. You won't have the place to yourself, but it's still a perfect spot for some relaxing wandering and filling up your camera roll.

Olive & June: Skip any pre-vacation manicure you may have been contemplating, and book one here instead. This pretty salon is known for their chic nail art, luxury experience, and reasonable pricing. 

for views: Don't miss a sunset view from the beach, whether you're in Santa Monica, Venice, or down at Hermosa Beach. Griffith Observatory is always busy, but the views - from downtown L.A. out to the ocean - and the art deco details are worth your trouble. If you're looking for a good photo spot with the Hollywood sign, see the map below!

for more art: The Getty is home to fantastic art and fantastic views, so be sure to see both. At LACMA, the Urban Light installation on Wilshire is worth a visit even if you don't have time to see the full museum. For an evening show, check what's on at the L.A. Opera

 

 How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see. 
 How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see. 
 How to See the Charming Side of Los Angeles, California | Stylish things to do, from beaches and restaurants to cultural highlights and the best views. | What to wear in Los Angeles, what to see in Downtown L.A., What to the best food and most photogenic spots to see. 

Shopping

The Last Bookstore: In an old bank building downtown, this shop is an expansive maze of books and records, both used and new. Any book lover could spend hours browsing here, feeling like you've fallen into this magical short film

The Los Angeles Flower Market: Picking up a fresh bouquet while traveling is one of my favorite ways to feel more local, and downtown L.A. has an entire flower district where you can buy just about any blooms under the sun. 

Melrose Place: The main avenue is lined with plenty of designer brands - perfect for window shopping - but this little street has a few hidden gems like beauty brand Violet Grey, The Apartment by The Line, Alfred in the Alley for coffee and Croft Alley for lunch. 

Abbot Kinney Boulevard: Definitely not a secret, this street in Venice is lined with plenty of shops and restaurants. For me, the shopping highlights are Huset, Cuyana, Salt, and Chariots on Fire.

for gifts & stationery: Sugar Paper (Santa Monica), Yolk (Silver Lake), Soap Plant (Los Feliz), The Social Type (Silver Lake), Poketo (Little Tokyo),  Brentwood Country Mart (Santa Monica), Arcana Books (Culver City), Heath Ceramics (West Hollywood). 

 

P.S. Rent a car in Los Angeles. If you're debating between driving or using public transit and ride-shares, here's my thinking: The cost may be about the same in the end, but having a car is so much more convenient. Plus, you'll be in crazy traffic either way, and you might as well be the one in charge of the music.
 

What to Wear:

bon voyage!

 
Five Essentials That Will Make You an Organized Traveler
 
 Five Essentials That Will Make You an Organized Traveler | Whether it's for a long vacation or a quick getaway, I always use these five things for packing an organized suitcase and keeping things in order while I travel. | My 5 Essentials for Packing an Organized Suitcase

photo by Molly Carr Photography | Sézane blouse, J. Crew skirt, Steamline Luggage suitcase.

There was a time, many moons ago, when I was a haphazard packer traveling with too many rolled-up clothes and always forgetting some little thing. With more travel experience, I've gradually developed my own method for packing well, and today I can prepare for a trip almost mindlessly with the help of these five essentials. Here's what I use to keep everything in order, from pajamas to charger cords: 

Five Essentials That Will Make You an Organized Traveler | Whether it's for a long vacation or a quick getaway, I always use these five things for packing an organized suitcase and keeping things in order while I travel. | My 5 Essentials for Packing an Organized Suitcase

1. A Hard-Sided Suitcase

It might not seem like the material of your suitcase would make such a big difference, but I promise that it does. Hard-sided luggage gives a bit of resistance that helps you to pack more, keep things in place, and protect what's inside. And - unless you're opting for vintage-style leather luggage - these bags tend to be more lightweight than their soft-sided counterparts. 

2. Packing Cubes

I get enough questions about these that they may need their own post, but here's the gist: packing cubes > rolling your clothes. The zippered cubes effectively turn your suitcase into a dresser, with each cube acting as a drawer. I fold most of my travel capsule wardrobe into packing cubes, freeing up tons of space and keeping my suitcase super-organized throughout the trip. I have and love this set, but have you seen these pretty ones by Paravel?

3. Pre-Packed Vanity Case

You may already have a dedicated makeup or toiletry bag for travel, but do you dart to and from the bathroom to re-pack it for each trip? I found a vanity case that has plenty of space and pockets, and I keep it packed with travel-sized versions of my daily products and makeup brushes. It's always ready to toss into my luggage, and I don't need to worry about leaving anything behind.

4. Quart-Size Bag for Liquids

If you never seem to have a 'quart-sized zip-top bag' around - or simply don't want to burn through plastic bags each trip - get one that you can use over and over. Pre-packing your vanity case goes hand-in-hand with this one: keep your travel-size liquids ready to go in their reuseable bag.

P.S. If you don't need to remove liquids at security (i.e. TSAPreCheck or GlobalEntry), you can put one bag of liquids in your carry-on suitcase and sneak another one in your 'personal item' or tote bag. Shhh, it's one of my best packing secrets!

5. A Tech CAse

With all the technology we're carrying these days, it's helpful to have one place for all the accessories that come along, too. My earbuds, portable charger, and cords of every kind travel together in a tech case. You can use a regular cosmetic bag or one that's specially designed to keep cords and electronics organized. I'm adding this one to my wish list!

bon voyage!