Thursday, January 21, 2016

Grand Park LA

While I had the unpleasant calling of jury duty today, it allowed me the opportunity to spend the day downtown.

Grand Park LA is right behind the courthouse so that’s where I spent lunch…

Grand Park / Pretty Haute Mess

Grand Park is a Los Angeles County park open to the public. It features cool seating, food trucks, a water fountain and an events calendar that includes yoga. The best part, in my opinion, is all the beautiful surrounding architecture.

Grand Park LA

All photos are my own


Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Have I mentioned how much I love Instagram, I think I have. What I try to tell people who don’t understand why I’m on my phone all the time (mostly my mom), is that the amazingness of your feed is all in who you follow.

Here’s a few of my current favorites in the lifestyle category…


1. Hannah Bronfman

2. Kelli Lamb

3. Local Milk

4. UniqFind

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

I’m back, baby! I strongly believe the gorgeous rainy weather in LA today has woken me up and cured my horrible cold. Ok, I should have been wishing you happy new year yesterday (the first Monday of 2016), but I was one of the lucky ones who literally woke up on January 1st sick. I’m finally feeling (almost) back to normal today, the 5th *chin drop in failure*.

Rainy Day Style / Pretty Haute Mess

El Nino has arrived in Los Angeles, I want this hat and sweater from Bolina ASAP.

I had a great BIG plan to organize my blog calendar for 2016 and blog every day. Cut to today, the second work day of the new year, and I’m ramble blogging with no plan. That’s me guys. I have made no goals to change who I am. Period. Done.

All that being said, I do want to blog lots, but I just don’t think I’ll ever be the type to really plan out every day for each quarter of the year. However, the struggle I always have with blogging as much as I want to is how to make the blog personal, yet relatable and relatable without being generic. I guess this is my preemptive apology for any blog posts that seem super predictable or super ramble’ly and personal… like this one.

As my first post for 2016, I think I should at least address some of my goals for the year. These are not promises or binding contracts, just things I want to work on. I’m going to try to hold myself accountable as best I can.

  • Be more responsible with my health. Eat healthy, take vitamins and exercise CONSISTENTLY. Consistency is the key here, because in the past I’ve been super healthy for 4 months and then completely horrible for 6+ months.
  • Make decision based on strength, not weakness. Whether I’m deciding what to eat for lunch or how to approach a work crisis, I don’t want to make decisions out of weakness (aka: the emotionally easy way out).
  • Travel more. Even if it’s just up North a few hours to San Francisco. This also means going more places at home in Los Angeles. For example, I still haven’t been to The Broad museum and I’m nobody on Instagram until I do.
  • Do more work. Paid or not, I want to work more. I have not added any personal projects to my portfolio for more than 1 year!

Let’s do this guys! Happy fucking new year!!


Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Pet Lover Gift Guide / Pretty Haute Mess

It’s that time of year again…. If you’re like me, you enjoy giving gifts that really fit the person you’re gifting. I pride myself at being pretty good at this.

For example, a design friend who loves her cat more than anything… Gift her a fun new cat cave, that’s also cool looking. Because we all know the hideous pet stuff there is out there…

For all those pet lovers you know, who also like cool shit, here’s a little gift guide for you to resource:

1. Mittens Dog Toy / Target

2. Cat Wand Toy / Target

3. Winter Dog Parka / Pet Smart

4. Rope Cat/Dog Collar / Found My Animal

5. Tough Dog Toy for Treats / Zee Dog

6. Kitten Collar / Target

7. Automatic Pet Food Dispenser / Petly

8. Cat Cave / Etsy

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

If you saw my post about wanting to lose weight where I posted “before” photos of myself, then you know food and body image has been a struggle for me since about the age of 10. You may also notice I deleted that post with those photos because, oh my god what was I thinking?!

The update, however is that I lost about 25 lbs!! There will be no “after” pictures because I’m over the over-sharing thing.

Eat Clean / Pretty Haute Mess

I’m talking about food and body image today because I’ve had another growth spurt in this area and I wanted to share… When I recently lost those 25 lbs, I was on a mission to eat super clean, exercise a lot and get my six-pack back. My husband was whispering to me that I was being extreme (again), but I didn’t listen (again).

Thankfully, I realized my extreme ways again before it was too late. This time, instead of reverting back to my laissez-faire ways (aka, self deprecating) and gaining the weight back, I caught myself and realized I wanted to give moderation a try. What if I didn’t stress about food and how much I’m exercising or how thin I wanted to be, and just kept active and ate real food (no fried or fast-food and limited sweets)…? While this may seem so easy and obvious for most, it’s actually the first time I have been willing to give it a try for more than a day. It’s been a few weeks now and I feel like a weight is lifted. I will try my best to keep it going….

I wake up in the morning and go running with my dog for about 2.5 – 3 miles. I don’t go to Crossfit or to TRX anymore… While I truly loved those workouts, I just can’t do anything that drives me to extremes. Trying to fit in all those workouts, plus some basic cardio, was exhausting. I have to keep things simple. I have so much fun running with Bishop, but never thought it was a “good enough” workout for me. Lame.

I’m eating clean, real food, not perfect food. By “perfect” I mean, no carbs, no bad fats, limited good fats and no desserts. I really don’t think it’s a breakfast like the one above that makes me gain weight (real eggs with whole grain toast, Balade light butter and organic jelly)… It’s the binges, the processed food and the sugar that destroys my health and my confidence. But believe it or not, this breakfast feels like a spurge to me.

I would love to hear your thoughts, especially if you’re in the same boat. It will always be a struggle, we just have to keep growing and work through it, right?

Friday, November 13, 2015

I have a really exciting announcement! I’m taking my first big trip in a very long time… I’m traveling to Mexico City next month! I’m taking my mom with me because my husband is super busy with multiple writing projects. But it’s also something special to do with my mother, who is from Mexico City, and spend some time with her.

Travel_Mexico City

Photography: Rodrigo Cruz for the New York Times

I used to travel to Mexico City every summer during high school (it’s the only other country I’ve ever been to). At that time, I just wanted to smoke and drink and go to clubs, so my plans for this trip are a little different. The last time I was there was fifteen years ago, when my grandmother passed away. For many years I did not want to go back because I missed her. But then, I developed a whole other reason for not wanting to go back, or travel anywhere for that matter…

Since traveling is essentially the act of being lost and wandering, I had no desire to feel more lost than I already did in my own life, at home in Los Angeles.

It was in my early 30’s that I developed a serious wanderlust, but it’s been hard to find the right combination of time and money. They’ve been hard to sync up.

All that being said, I’m so excited to finally be traveling, and I love that Mexico City is the first destination. Stay tuned for some fun traveling posts…!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

I love Instagram… I know social media has a bad rep because the theory is that everyone who’s on their iPhones “connecting”, are actually “disconnected”, blah blah blah. Well, what about those people who would be disconnected with or without technology….??? Like me.

I’m not a very social person, I like staying home. And if I do go anywhere I really don’t mind going alone… coffee shops, movies, museums, etc. Social media gives me an outlet and enables me to expand my very tiny world. I’m able to connect with others and share my life. More importantly, find people all over the world who have similar interests like design, travel, fitness, food, etc. I’m able to connect with them and express myself when I would otherwise be talking to my fur children my husband or my mother….

I’m also able to play the photographer I always wanted to be, but didn’t really want to be. I’m more observant wherever I go because of it. And not in a ‘oh, I have to post this’, but in a ‘wow, that makes a cool shot’. Of course sometimes it has nothing to do with the shot, but rather just sharing and connecting.

Instagram Recap_Pretty Haute Mess

All of this being said, here’s a little recap of some very recent Instagram posts. I never post too much in my captions so I’ll expand a little with some of these (starting from the top down):

Speaking of going places alone, I’m picky about what gets me out of the house. It wasn’t a question when I attended a book signing in Culver City last week to support my friend Marcia Prentice. If you love interior design and traveling, you will love her book “How We Live”.

My husband and I both work from home right now, so we’re able to do what we want when we want (this also means we’re constantly concerned about our savings balance, so don’t be too jealous). Recently, one morning we headed to our nearby newsstand, bought a few magazines, then headed to our favorite brunch spot Vivian’s in North Hollywood. We both sat there, obviously not on a first date, looking at our magazines in the cutest urban jungle.

I’m proud to announce that I just had my third photoshoot in my apartment. This home tour will be published on Houzz, not sure when but I’ll keep you posted… The first home tour I did was for Simply Grove and it featured a complete re-design of the place. Soon after, I re-designed her blog, so be sure to check it out! The second home tour was for The Everygirl and I made a few updates to the place for that one. I’m so grateful for both of these and was super excited when Houzz contacted me a few months ago.

Since I’m rather happy with how apartment looks now, there wasn’t much to update for this one, besides a few succulents. However, I did make one huge change because I finally gave up trying to accept the ceiling fan in our bedroom. Since we rent, the most I’ve done is paint an accent wall, mount a TV and switch out the hideous brown ceiling fan in our office for a clean white one (the owner won’t even notice as long as there’s a fan there). But I finally found an easy solution for getting rid of the bedroom ceiling fan without dealing with electrical stuff. I took apart the fan, the blades, glass bowl and one other annoying piece so all that was left was a small white base and a bulb (I quickly replaced the ugly bulb with a round Edison). Next, I decided to turn the Ikea “cloud” pendant into a flush mount (I just didn’t buy the cord and bulb that goes along with it). Turns out, it was the best option for what I needed because I could crinkle and form the paper layers around the base of the fan, essentially just hiding it. Now, I have a functioning light, just turned off the fan, and I didn’t electrocute myself…voila!