TWENTY FACTS ABOUT EMILY

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My boyfriend, Luke, and I

1. My full initials are EDD, which led me to be called “Ed” throughout grade school.

2. I love animals – mostly dogs, more than most people. When I was little, I wanted to be a veterinarian until I grew up and realized how much math and science were involved (I’ve always been the more artistic and creative type).

3. I am a very shy and awkward person. I’m not one to start conversation with strangers and/or people I don’t know very well because I usually say or do something stupid and embarrass myself.

4. My boyfriend Luke is one of the most extraordinary people I’ve ever met. He is from England and moved here when he was 16 to finish high school and attend college. He pursues everything he wants in life with all that he has and I truly aspire to be as ambitious and as courageous as he is. Another fun fact – he also encouraged and helped me to build my blog.

5. I interned for an interior designer during high school and declared interior design as my major when I began college. I took all the pre-requisites at my local community college and the semester before I was supposed to transfer to Savannah College of Art and Design, I started having second thoughts. I had taken a study abroad photography course that summer and fell in love with photography and was encouraged by my professor to declare photography as my new major. One year later, I graduated with an associates degree in photography.

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Meet my minion, Dave

6. My first international trip (to France) was in 2010, my freshman year of college, and it changed every facet of my life. I fell in love with travel and experiencing other cultures and people and I couldn’t imagine being limited to only take one life-changing trip per year and sit in an office for the rest of the year counting down the days till my next vacation.

7. Because I have so many passions and interests (which is the primary reason I created Epicurean Emily), I have had an especially hard time trying to decide what I would like to pursue as far as careers go. My dream job would allow me to travel, to collaborate with fellow creatives, and to do something that I consider worthwhile and meaningful. I plan on moving to NYC in the next few years to go to design school so that I can gain experience and education in creative fields.

8. I am one of the biggest Despicable Me/Minion fans you will ever meet. I have my own minion, Dave, who lives in my purse and always travels with me and poses with all the famous landmarks wherever we go. Oh and Luke threw a surprise minion-themed birthday party for me this year…I just turned 23.

9. I am a bit of a perfectionist and have a painstaking attention to detail. I don’t believe in submitting anything sub-par. I not only feel this way about my creative work, but in everything that I do.

10. Sports are really hard for me. Not literally, although I am not the most athletic or graceful girl there ever was, but I just really don’t understand the hype about most of it, especially football. Where I’m from, people live for football season and football saturdays (and sundays and mondays) and then they spend ALL week reviewing stats and tweaking their fantasy teams and it just seems like a massive waste of time and energy to me. Then again they’re probably saying that about this blog of mine. Ah well, to each their own.

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I dress up as Katy Perry regularly… concerts, Halloween, any occasion that calls for a costume. Do you know how much fun it is to have blue hair and wear a donut printed one-piece and a cotton candy tutu? Do you???

11.  I consider myself a wine gal. I really despise beer. I’ve found a few that I can handle the taste of but I genuinely enjoy a nice glass of Pinot Noir a whole lot more than a cold one.

12. Since I’m talking about wine, I’ll mention my love for cheese because everyone knows that’s the greatest combination ever. Who really cares about peanut butter & jelly, anyway? I love to get really adventurous with cheese because I rarely find one that I don’t like. I’ll be honest, Camembert is NOT my favorite but is still edible. Since we’re talking about French cheese though, I’ve gotta mention BRIE because everyone loves brie. If you don’t you’re only lying to yourself. Throw a wheel in the oven and let it get all melty and gooey and drizzle some honey over the top of it once you take it out. Swipe a pita chip (or a finger-no judgement) through it and there’s no way you can say to me that you don’t like brie after that.

13. Katy Perry is basically my favorite person ever. Everything she does is gold, in my opinion. She is unapologetically herself, and even if that means strutting around the Superbowl halftime stage with beach balls for boobs and dancing with cartoon sharks (shoutout to left shark!), she doesn’t think twice about it. My favorite song by her is “Thinking of You” from the “One of the Boys” album. Most of you have probably never heard it so go listen to it now. Like right now.

14. Although I don’t follow a strict diet, I try to eat mostly protein and fruits and vegetables with as little starch as possible BUT my favorite food group is carbs so as they say, the struggle is real. I live for pastries and pasta and potatoes… (If I ever write a cheat day cookbook, I’ll keep that in mind for a title). Pasta and bread were the only foods I would eat as a child, but unfortunately I’ve had to cut back since becoming an adult with a slower metabolism (It’s not all its cracked up to be kids, never grow up and eat whatever you want forever). And don’t even get me started on fries- regular, steak, sweet potato, waffle, truffle, incredibly unhealthy McDonald’s fries… I have yet to meet a fry I didn’t like.

15. Because of my love for animals, I am very picky about the meat that I choose to eat. If it weren’t for Chik-Fil-A and the occasional burger, I could be a vegetarian easily. I typically go a few days a week without eating (or missing) meat. I try very hard to support local farming and only eat livestock that has been raised in a humane way (which usually eliminates the use of antibiotics and GMOs). I realize that humanely raising animals used for meat is kind of an oxymoron but I haven’t been able to make the vegetarian commitment just yet. I do not support the “factory farm” that American capitalism has created and I feel very passionately about educating people about what is really in their food because I’ve found that it’s not necessarily that they don’t care, but that most of them really have no clue since the government and FDA have no reign on corporations’ regulations. I try to encourage people to ask questions about what they’re consuming.

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April Ludgate is my spirit animal. Image courtesy of NBC.

16. My favorite fashion blogger is Chiara Ferragni of The Blonde Salad. I aspire to see fashion the way that she does. She puts pieces together like no one else, she breaks all the rules but does it in a way that always looks effortless and never too over the top (wouldn’t it be nice if we could all be cool Italian girls?). I’ve only been following her for a year or so, about the time I was introduced to the fashion blogging world, but I keep up with her Instagram and Snapchat daily and I’m always inspired. I strive to be a source of unique inspiration to others through my own blog, like Chiara has been, and is, for me.

17. I’m TERRIBLE at styling hair. I don’t have the patience for it and don’t want to spend extra time getting ready after I’ve spent 30 minutes doing my make-up. I tend to do something a little different every time I go to the salon (which is like 3 times a year, if I’m being honest). I’ve had blue hair, a pixie cut, and I try bangs once a year in hopes that my cowlick has magically disappeared.

18. I have CHRONIC Resting Bitch Face (yes, its a thing). Almost all of my friends have said to me at some point, “I thought you hated me/were a bitch when I first met you”. If I had a dollar for every time someone has said that or “Are you ok? You look upset,” to me I’d be a billionaire. I’ve learned to accept it and actually kind of appreciate it at this point. It’s just my face and the people curious enough to get to know me realize that I am anything but bitchy.

19. I’m not a coffee person. I know that’s kind of unheard of in this day and age but I just hate the taste of it, although the smell is HEAVENLY. I will occasionally have the obligatory Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte or White Peppermint Mocha, but I really enjoy not having to rely on coffee to make me a functioning human.

20. I don’t really like to watch movies or TV. If I’m watching a movie at home, I have to be really into it to be able to sit still for over an hour. I only have a handful of shows that I can actually sit and watch (usually if I have the TV on it’s just background noise while I’m editing, writing, or trolling the internet). My favorite show of all time is Parks and Recreation. I love the personalities and interactions between all of the characters. Oh and I’m the closest thing you’ll ever find to a real life April Ludgate and have actually had people tell me I look like her (must be the bitch face).

Emily
2017-04-03T00:30:09+00:00 September 29th, 2015|Uncategorized|2 Comments

RIPPED DENIM & GOLD RIBBON

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I don’t really consider myself a jewelry girl. I couldn’t tell you the last time I put in a pair of earrings. I don’t have any jewelry that I wear every day because everything is too uncomfortable for me to sleep in and I forget to put it back on in the morning. God help my future husband because I’ll probably lose my wedding ring at some point in our marriage… With all that being said, it is very unusual of me to plan an entire outfit around a necklace, yet here I am – surprising myself.  I found this chunky chain necklace at Forever 21 a couple of years ago. I love the silk scarf-like fabric inside because its very versatile. I’ve worn it with a white t-shirt before and it gave just the right amount of glam. Although most of my necklaces are some variation of the gold chain (maybe my real calling in life is to be a rapper… watch out Iggy) this particular one is very classy and feminine. I think it gives the perfect dose of girly to this otherwise tomboyish look. I chose the navy cropped tank to contrast with the primarily bright necklace. Since I had a navy top, I didn’t want to wear jeans that were too dark, so I chose to wear my beloved American Eagle boy crop jeans (Yes, I did buy them with holes, however the holes have grown). I will have to find another use for them when the time comes. I went with my Target (Clearance find!) Mossimo lace-up heels to tone down the tomboy. Tell me – which piece of jewelry do you never leave the house without??? Maybe y’all will rub off on me…

Emily
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September 2015

I was wearing;

Forever 21 Gold Chain Ribbon-Laced Necklace

American Eagle Navy Cropped Tank

American Eagle Boy-Fit Cropped Jeans

Target Mossimo Lace-Up Heels

“Ripped Denim & Gold Ribbon” photographed by Arturo Guzman

2017-04-03T00:30:09+00:00 September 22nd, 2015|Fashion|0 Comments

PLEATHER & GOLD

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So I suppose one could consider this a fall outfit, except for the sandals…right? I’m not ready to say goodbye to summer just yet, or ever. But there are many fun trends for the upcoming fall and winter seasons that are making it easier to get a little more excited about the inevitable colder months. One big influence on the runway for this season was 70’s fashion – more specifically the colors of the 70’s. Think burnt oranges, olives, and browns. This skirt just screams 70’s to me, maybe because the cognac color is basically a shade of burnt orange. I can’t wait to pair it with different pieces this fall. To keep with the 70’s theme, I busted out my gold platform sandals because 70’s and platform shoes go together like peanut butter & jelly. Which fall trends are you excited about?

Emily
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September 2015

I was wearing;

American Eagle Gold Necklace

Forever 21 Cream Turtleneck

Forever 21 Cognac Pleather Skirt

Target Mossimo Gold Platform Sandals

“Pleather & Gold” Photographed by Arturo Guzman

2017-04-03T00:30:09+00:00 September 18th, 2015|Fashion|0 Comments

SEPTEMBER ELEVENTH MEMORIAL & MUSEUM

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One of the museums that was at the top of my list during my last visit to New York City was the 9/11 Museum & Memorial. I hadn’t visited the city since 2011 so it was nice to come back and see all of the progress that had been made in an area that many thought would never recover. The Freedom Tower, now the tallest and strongest building in the NYC skyline, stands right across the street from the memorial and acts as a reminder of the resilience of our great country. On the block where the twin towers once stood are two stunning memorial “pools”, around which are inscribed the names of all the victims of 9/11. They incorporated the depth of these pools into the museum and the walls of the pools make up a part of the museum interior. The exhibit follows a timeline sort of layout, with important dates of terrorist activity prior to 9/11, a very detailed timeline of September 11th, 2001, and the aftermath of the attack. It is well laid out and has a lot of interesting artifacts. They don’t allow photography in the exhibit area of the museum, which I appreciate because it forces you to be more present and respectful. Bring some tissues because most of the stories and images are heart-breaking. I was only in fourth grade in 2011 and even though I didn’t fully grasp the concept of terrorism at that age, I remember September 11th very vividly. I would encourage everyone, especially Americans, to visit the museum if given the opportunity. Seeing all the finite details of that fateful day gave me a renewed sense of pride for America and the American people because of our resilience and bravery. If you don’t mind crowds and don’t want to pay the $24 (adult) ticket price, take advantage of free admission Tuesdays from 5 PM to close. You can reserve your tickets on the 9/11 Memorial website (www.911memorial.org) at 9 AM the Monday before or get free tickets at the ticket window beginning at 4 PM on Tuesday, but get there early to avoid waiting in long lines if you don’t reserve online ahead of time.

Emily
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The last remaining column of the World Trade Towers stands tall in the middle of the museum.

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The newly renovated FDNY Ladder and Engine Company 10 station, just a block from the World Trade Center.

2017-04-03T00:30:09+00:00 September 16th, 2015|Travel|0 Comments

PETER PAN & POLKA DOTS

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This outfit is the kind of outfit that makes it hard to say goodbye to high temperatures. During summer, I live in skirts and dresses because they’re considerably cooler. This Forever 21 mod polka-dot print skirt is so flirty and fun. I love the tulle underlay because it’s almost like getting away with wearing a tutu. Did I mention it has POCKETS?! All of my skirt requirements are met with this piece. I wore an H&M crop top with a black Peter-Pan collar that ties into the pattern on the skirt. I wanted to keep this outfit fun, so I paired it with black polka-dot Keds-style sneakers from Target.

Emily
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September 2015

I was wearing;

H&M Mint Peter-Pan Collar Crop Top

Forever 21 Mod Polka-Dot Bubble Skirt

Victoria’s Secret Heart-Shaped Purse

Target Black Polka-Dot Sneakers

Quay Australia Quay x Shay Vesper Sunglasses

“Peter Pan & Polka Dots” Photographed by Arturo Guzman

2017-04-03T00:30:09+00:00 September 10th, 2015|Fashion|2 Comments

MY GUIDE TO NYC OBSERVATION DECKS

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During my last trip to New York City, I had the opportunity to visit the Top of the Rock at Rockefeller Center for the first time and the brand new One World Observatory at One World Trade Center. Read my thoughts on these observation decks and the deck at the Empire State Building, which I visited on a previous NYC trip, below.

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TOP OF THE ROCK

The Top of the Rock Observation Deck, located in Rockefeller Center, was one of the highlights of my entire NYC visit. I know that many people are torn between this one and the Empire State Building and I have been to both and the Top of the Rock is SOO much more enjoyable. Tickets are $30 and you do have to wait to get on the elevator to the deck on a lower floor, but they have informational videos and a photographer taking group photos to pass the time. I waited maybe fifteen to twenty minutes. When I visited the Empire State Building several years ago I remember waiting around an hour just to get on the elevator. The Top of the Rock has three stories that you can wander around for however long you please, unlike the Empire State where you have about 20 minutes on the viewing deck until they force you back onto the elevator. The top deck in the center has no glass panels like the lower two. The glass doesn’t affect the view, however. I know at the Empire State, they have a chain fence around the entire deck and the walls are built fairly high so if you’re short, your views are very limited. I really enjoyed the Top of the Rock because it is in the heart of Manhattan and offers both northern and southern views. To the north, you have a magnificent view of central park and the upper east and west sides. To the south, you can see all of the famous skyscrapers – the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building, One World Trade Center, and many more. If you only have time and/or money for one really great view while you’re in NYC, hands-down I would suggest visiting the Top of the Rock. I also shot an outfit post on the deck that you can see here

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The middle deck of the Top of the Rock, where a beautiful couple was shooting wedding portraits on the day that I visited.

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The northern side of the Top of the Rock, known for its incredible view of Manhattan’s Central Park.

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ONE WORLD OBSERVATORY

The One World Observatory is located at the top of the Freedom Tower or One World Trade Center, which is now the tallest building in New York City. There is a separate entrance for the observatory where you enter to purchase tickets ($32) and ride an elevator to a “briefing” floor where you can rent iPads with information about the buildings as you walk around. The elevator ride to the observatory was one of the highlights. Its probably the fastest elevator I’ve ever ridden and it projects a video onto the walls as you ascend over one hundred stories. The observatory is very interactive and there are “performing” tour guides that stand in the middle of a circular television display and give you information about New York buildings and architecture as well as NYC life. You can walk a complete 360 degrees around the observatory, which I loved because it puts things into perspective. It’s pretty close to having a aerial view of New York City. Because you are on the lower tip of Manhattan, it has a great view of the island, including all three of the bridges (Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Willamsburg), as well as Lady Liberty. The One World Observatory doesn’t have an outdoor area but instead has floor to ceiling glass. I think the glass would be wonderful if visiting during the day but at night, there was glare from the gift shop, restaurant, and lights in the center of the floor which made it hard to see unless you put your face up to the glass to look out. I really liked the observatory to show the perspective between the sheer size of Manhattan and also its relation to the other burroughs, New Jersey, and Staten and Ellis Islands. If you want to look out and see the Empire State Building right next to you, this isn’t the observatory for you. Although you are still able to see the famous NYC skyscrapers, they are pretty far off in the distance because this building is so much taller than all of the other buildings in New York AND it is so much further away from most of them. It was a cool experience and I don’t regret it BUT if you are trying to visit on a budget I would suggest to skip it and just do the Top of the Rock.

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View of the Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Williamsburg Bridges and the East River from the One World Observatory in the new “Freedom Tower”.

2017-04-03T00:30:09+00:00 September 7th, 2015|Travel|0 Comments

BOWS BEFORE BROS

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I found this skirt at Zara recently on the clearance rack and it just might be my new favorite. It’s so classy and feminine but the stitched-on pockets help to keep it modern. Since the skirt is so sophisticated, I wanted to have a little fun with the quirky bow-print crop top. I wore strappy nude heels to accentuate the length of my legs because I didn’t want the longer length of the skirt to make my 5’4″ frame to look stubby. As always, my Quay x Shay Vesper sunnies went perfectly with this ensemble, so I had to feature them.

Emily
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August 2015

I was wearing;

H&M Bow Print Cropped Blouse
Zara Skirt
Steve Madden Nude Strappy Heels
Quay Australia Quay X Shay Vesper Sunglasses

“Bows Before Bros” Photographed by Arturo Guzman

2017-04-03T00:30:09+00:00 September 2nd, 2015|Fashion|0 Comments