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The Zara Mini City Bag: An Affordable It Bag

the zara city bag
We didn’t do a ton of shopping while in Paris, mostly a lot of browsing and oohing and aahing in windows. However, one day we found ourselves near a Zara, and as a firm believer that for whatever reason, Zara’s in Europe are better than the ones at home, I made Joe amuse himself while I popped in.

One of the first things I spotted was this cheerful, bright yellow handbag. Dubbed the “Mini City Bag”, the shape reminds me so much of Louis Vuitton’s classic Alma bag (which, between you and me, I’ve been coveting for ages). I didn’t pull the trigger because I do want to eventually buy the LV; however, I wasn’t surprised to see every color of this bag gracing the arms of chic Parisian gals all over town. I saw them breeze past me during breakfast in the 6th; another shot by during a coffee break in the 3rd; still another jetted past me as its owner dashed off the metro. As many gorgeous designer handbags as I also saw, the French gals proved once again that style does not have to be about blowing your budget — it’s all in the attitude.

I’m pretty sure these are in Zara stores here in the states, but if not, you can easily order it online!

The Word

to be irreplaceable you must be different

It’s a little sad how excited I’ve been to share this image with you. This is the famous Coco Chanel quote, “To be irreplaceable, you must be different.” I spotted this in the window of the Chanel jewelry store in the Place Vendôme. See the little pieces of curled gold metal? These were attached to a white wall behind the window, and from afar, it looked like some weird, abstract metal art installation. Come a little closer to the display, and you see a light shining just above it. The shadow cast from the light hitting the curved pieces of metal create the quote. I thought it was the coolest thing I’d seen in a long time.

Truly different, totally irreplaceable. I hope this inspires you today!

The Perfect Sandals for Traveling (And Beyond!)

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Can I admit one of my worst habits to you? When it comes to certain things — hot weather, uncomfortable shoes, being very hungry — I can be a bit of a complainer. I know, I know, no one likes a whiner, and lucky for most of my friends, this bad habit really only comes out around Joe and the rest of my family (lucky them!).

About half way through our vacation, when I mentioned how comfortable these Gentle Souls sandals were, Joe replied wryly, “Yeah, you haven’t complained about your feet hurting once this trip. You should buy 2 or 3 more pairs of those!” Ladies, that’s how you know you’ve hit the sandal jackpot. When your husband actively encourages you to buy MORE shoes.

In all seriousness, I’m so glad I bought these shoes beforehand, because my feet didn’t bother me once during our trip. I wore these sandals pretty much everyday, swapping them out with dressy flats at night sometimes. Even after hours of wear, my feet never ached. The shoes have adjustable laces, so they’re never too tight around your feet, even if they become swollen from a lot of walking. The footbed is a really smooth, matte leather, and the sole has a thin lining of memory foam on top of rubber, so they’re insanely comfortable. Many sandals nowadays have a solid, hard wood base — great for making a sturdy, durable shoe, not so great for hours of walking (like when you’re on vacation). The Gentle Souls sandals have the look of a sturdier sandal, while being infinitely softer on the feet.

I got them in this gray color and with Joe’s blessing (!!), am considering getting them in black and this pretty gold color too. I found they ran a little large — you can tell in some of these pics that they’re probably about a half size too big on me — but since I got them right before our vacation and they seemed comfortable enough, I didn’t want to return them (because I literally didn’t have another nice sandal that I thought could stand up to walking miles everyday). The front lip of my sandals got a bit scuffed up since they were slightly too big and kept catching on the cobblestones in Paris, but I think with a smaller size this wouldn’t have happened.

Honestly, if you’re doing any traveling this summer and know you’ll be doing walking along with it, I can’t recommend these enough. They look cute with skirts, dresses, jeans, shorts — really, everything! I was a little hesitant given the price (especially since so many of my summer sandals get worn out so quickly), but I’m very glad I went for it!

SHOP COLORS (AND PRICE COMPARE!):