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Garfield Conservatory

floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-13floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-18floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-16floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-17floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-10floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-15 floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-9floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-11floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-8floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-12floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-3floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-2floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-4floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-14 floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-6floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-7 floral-silk-blouse-garfield-observatory-5Vest: Topshop // Blouse: Banana Republic // Jeans: Express // Sunglasses: Karen Walker via DITTO // Earrings: old, similar // Bag: old, similar // Boots: Circus by Sam Edelman // Manicure: Nails by MEI

What to do when you’re more than ready for spring to come, but the bulbs are just starting to push through the ground? Put on your prettiest floral print silk top—layered with a luxuriously plush faux fur vest because it’s technically still winter—and head to that great Victorian invention of indoor botany: the conservatory. Although the stunning facade of the Conservatory of Flowers in San Francisco may be more appealing from the outside, the Garfield Conservatory just outside of Chicago boasts hidden lush gardens that are hard to beat.

We recently popped up to Chicago so I could cover an event for the Nordstrom blog, where I was treated to this bananas manicure by the great Mei, but once my job was done we had some time to explore Chicagoland a bit. We were originally planning on checking out the Van Gogh exhibit at the Art Institute but ran out of time, so we decided to explore the conservatory after we happened to drive past it, and I’m so glad we did.

In addition to the wealth of daffodils, hyacinths, orchids and succulents, the Garfield is currently home to the solarise exhibit, which the conservatory website describes as “a series of light and sculptural environments created by Luftwerk – Chicago artists Petra Bachmaier and Sean Gallero.” I especially loved the floral patchwork of red-and-blue lucite panels that were suspended over the Show Room, adding another layer of color to the already stunning setting. We spent over an hour wandering from greenhouse to greenhouse, snapping photos along the way, but I could have happily just moved on in like the kids in From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. Being around that many flowers and all that beautiful color left me with a huge, dumb grin on my face, and I can’t wait to go back.

Style, Travel

A Gray Day in San Francisco

moto-vest-plaid-blanket-scarf-8moto-vest-plaid-blanket-scarf-2moto-vest-plaid-blanket-scarf-10moto-vest-plaid-blanket-scarf-3moto-vest-plaid-blanket-scarf-6moto-vest-plaid-blanket-scarf-11moto-vest-plaid-blanket-scarf-7moto-vest-plaid-blanket-scarf-4moto-vest-plaid-blanket-scarf-1moto-vest-plaid-blanket-scarf-5moto-vest-plaid-blanket-scarf-9Top: Necessary Clothing // Vest: Topshop // Pants: Express // Scarf: Zara // Bag: Kate Spade // Booties: Circus by Sam Edelman // Pompom: Amazon // Sunglasses: Karen Walker via DITTO // Bracelet: Julie Vos // Rings: BaubleBar

As I write this post, curled up on my couch in Iowa, my phone is telling me that it feels like -20 degrees outside. And so, when I look back at these pictures of what seemed like a chilly day in San Francisco, I laugh at my past self. The self that had been spoiled by a so-far extremely mild Midwestern winter. But I digress.

On this particular day during our recent trip to SF, Max and I stopped to admire the view of the bay from the top of Pac Heights. Although the day was mostly gray and rainy, we were treated to the appearance of a rainbow that arced softly down the hill and seemed to disappear into the water. Thanks to a cozy blanket scarf that I picked up at Zara on my trip, I stayed nice and bundled even atop the windy hill. My favorite moto vest—which I scored during the Nordstrom anniversary sale last summer—topped off the muted look.

After snapping a few photos, we hopped in the car to meet my lovely friend Kia at Craftsmen & Wolves in the Mission and warm up with a cup of sipping caramel. Come to this of it, that’s exactly what I need right now to keep my internal temperature above freezing. I wonder if Postmates delivers to Iowa City…