catch up, please.

ImageOh hey there, 2014. You’re a sneaky one. This year (especially the latter half), has been the start of a new life season and one giant sigh of “holy crap that was insane” and “yup, vacation feels amazing”. It’s been way too long since I’ve written anything (and I mean…anything), and, while it’s a bit disheartening to have broken away from the blog as much as I have, I’m ready to dive back in. It’s time for change – and after all, this is the time for resolutions, right? :)

Over the last few months, we’ve celebrated birthdays, an island Thanksgiving (in Catalina!), a 16-day break from the office, a trip back to Florida for New Years and an amazing new job for the hubs (you guys… I have a really handsome co-worker)! I haven’t been as active around the house as I’d like to be, but am excited to kick off the decorating season by finally (FINALLY) finishing the paint in our living room this weekend! (We have 1 grey wall and 3 green. Super snazzy stuff).

Seriously can’t wait to spend more time with you. Cheers to reconnecting!

weekend recap


Sunshine is delicious, rain is refreshing, wind braces us up, snow is exhilarating; there is really no such thing as bad weather, only different kinds of good weather.
– John Ruskin

The weekend brought in a chill, but I just love the coziness it created. Surrounded by amazing company, yummy food and the most beautiful settings (maybe ever), our schedule was brimming with activity – rain or shine!


Starting off the weekend right, we stopped into NEApolitan Pizzeria & Birreria for a proscuitto, arugula and mushroom pie. Their authentic handmade pizzas are simply to die for (and I always save the best for last – their crispy, doughy crust)!


Friday morning meant a joyous J.C. Beans reunion with the cuz (and newest Nook & Sea contributor) over steaming coffee and a vanilla chai with almond milk. We also might have had a photo sesh outside.


Weekend browsing is never complete without a visit to The Old Barn Antiques Mall. I scoured the multi-room shop for vintage apothecary bottles and stumbled upon some SERIOUSLY HARD TO RESIST stuff (i.e. an old door…which I’m not 100% sure what I’d do with, but still).


(Found my bottles!)


That afternoon, I attempted to get rid of a few things around the house (fail) and repurposed the IKEA Hultet dish to display seashells on the coffee table.


Later that evening, we celebrated a very special friend (surprise)!


…and took in the most incredible view!


How was your weekend? Have you scored any special thrifting finds lately?


featured on: the portraiteer


It was a rainy, cozy and perfect day to meet up with Harvard-trained visual studies and English literature guru, Nicole Anderson. This self-confessed bookworm, lover of (well, love) and seasoned photographer quickly became my fast friend. Nicole is one of those personalities that oozes smart. She is hungry; desiring to know the in’s and out’s of beauty and the life around it – and I was more than flattered when she tracked me down for a feature at her chic blog-about-bloggers, The Portraiteer.



NookAndSea-Sorella-Muse-Photography-The-Portraiteer-VW-Bus-White-Rainy-Day-Outfit-Attire-Clothing-Jacket-Boots-Beach-Ocean-Sea-Blue-Nails-Black-Zipper-Dakine-Roof-Rack-AsphaltWe started off our afternoon at J.C. Beans Coffee House (my go-to venue for almond milk chai’s) and cozied up in a corner. It was unusually busy for a Friday, and after awhile we found ourselves craving the coolness of outside air. We meandered through the streets and hit one of my favorite stops, the Dana Point Nursery, photo-snapping and laughing all the way. It could have been Christmas all over again.

One thing I’ve learned about portrait sessions is that you really have to pretend you’re someone else (at least, it seems to work for me). I was thinking a little Emily Blunt, Keira Knightley, Lindsay Lohan or Anne Hathaway. Those chicks got it down (did I come close)? ;)




To read my full interview, see additional photos and explore more blogger portraits, head over to Nicole’s blog and photography website. A million thank you’s to Nicole for braving our drizzly day and creating an amazing memory!

All photos by Nicole Anderson of Sorella-Muse Photography

design within reach: store opening recap

Hidey ho, neighbors! Sorry for the radio silence this week. The past few days have been brimming with some big decision-making (don’t worry, all over!) but I found some time to relax with family, enjoy walks with the husband and even sign up for yoga again after almost a year (I know…. yikes)!  Thursday night I had the privilege of attending the grand opening of the new Design Within Reach store at the South Coast Collection in Costa Mesa (you might remember the first time I visited here). Some of my favorite snaps from the night:







With plenty of sips to go around, photos by the talented Anne Watson and enough designer furniture to make you drool (like this stunning Line Console), the evening was simply amazing. What are you up to this week? Have a great Wednesday!

please welcome jillian burmeister: travel & surf contributor to nook & sea


Hi friends! Wow – what an incredible week. Not only did Nook & Sea reach the huge milestone of 100,000 total views (and still climbing – thanks to you all!); but over a cup of chai and ricotta pancakes (and later made official by a totally serious handshake in the car) a historic deal was made. Let me hint by saying that I have the best family ever – and in this case, the family I inherited when I got married :)

Jillian Burmeister, avid wave-rider and lover of the tropics, will be documenting her journey as SoCal-native-turned-Hawaii-local-turned-Indonesian-transplant right here as Travel & Surf Contributor to Nook & Sea. After attending the SERF program (Surfers Education Relief Force) in the Mentawai islands of Indonesia, Jillian’s love for surf journalism is carrying her back overseas for an extended stay in Kuta Beach, Bali this spring. And with published pieces in SurfersPath and Pacific Edge Magazine, I am honored to share her writing and experiences with you all. Please give a warm welcome to my beautiful cousin and friend; and be on the lookout for her handcrafted words, beyond-gorgeous photos and insight into her new world of adventure ♥ Mahalo!

the perfect sidekick: 10 alternative nightstand solutions


Hi Nook & Sea readers! I hope 2013 is treating you all well thus far. If you are like me (Jessica), one of the items on your list for 2013 is to finally complete the design of different rooms in your home. And while scouring the market for new finds is exciting, sometimes it’s nice to look at what you already have and use them in a brand new way.

Normally when I begin organizing my space, I’ll take all of the decorative accessories and small furniture pieces from every room, place them in the middle of my living room and reassess their location. For instance, I have two bar carts (I know this sounds crazy, but I won this one from CB2 last year and don’t have the heart to get rid of my first one)!  After thinking outside of the box, I decided to use the CB2 cart as a nightstand in my guest room – and it totally works! I loved the idea of using a non-traditional bedside table as a nightstand and thought I would share a few more ideas:










I hope you find new ways to use different pieces in your own home!

xo, Jessica

source: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10

daily beauty routine


Happy Friday, friends! The weather here has been cool and rainy – not so crazy that you can’t run out and do anything, but just rainy enough to walk around with an umbrella and sport a cute jacket (and for the record, I love it)! :) This morning I had an amazing photo session with Nicole Anderson of Sorella Muse Photography and am absolutely beaming from the whole experience (can’t wait to show you what she’s been working on)! While in preparation for our meeting, I thought it would be fun to show you what’s in my makeup bag lately and give an insider’s peek at my morning beauty routine.

1. Maybelline’s Cover Stick concealer – After moisturizing, I start off by dabbing a little concealer under my eyes and around any blemishes with my ring finger. You can also apply the stick directly to your face, which works well for areas that need more coverage.

2. NYC (New York Color)’s Smooth Skin Loose Face Powder – Following concealer, I lightly dust my entire face with this as a base for foundation. It’s inexpensive and lasts forever; plus, it’s perfect for touching up throughout the day (I prefer it over a compact powder and apply it with e.l.f.’s Powder Brush: super soft and only $3 bucks)!

3. Maybelline’s Mineral Power Natural Perfecting Powder Foundation with SPF 18 – I gave up on the whole liquid foundation thing a long time ago, and tossed out the idea of professional powders (i.e. BareMinerals, which was awesome, but too expensive to maintain). This works just as well and costs half the price, plus it can be found at any discounter or drugstore instead of having to head to the mall every time you run out.

4. Physician’s Formula Powder Palette Multi-Colored Blush in Blushing Berry – A leftover from my Physician’s Formula days, I dust this on the apples of my cheeks and usually rub off a bit with a tissue afterward to make it more natural. It’s the first blush I purchased from them and it’s still going strong!

5. Maybelline’s Ultra-Brow Brush on Color in Light Brown – I have really fine eyebrows and always feel more put together when I fill them in a little. Using an angled eyeliner brush, I dab this powder into my brows and extend the ends just slightly. The shadow is way easier to control than a pencil and has a softer appeal.

6. e.l.f. (Eyes, Lips, Face) Wet Gloss Lash & Brow Clear Mascara – By far the best way to keep eyebrows groomed and shaped; this wand is the perfect steal at only $1 (Target).

7. Maybelline’s Perfect Pastels eyeshadow in Pink Petal – While I’m not accustomed to wearing a lot of eyeshadow, I do like having something on my lids to keep them from feeling oily and to set the base for my eyeliner. This shade is romantic, neutral and perfect for everyday (I’ve also been meaning to try the more nude version, Silken Taupe).

8. Rimmel London’s Exaggerate Waterproof Eye Definer in 261 Noir – With a foam smudging tip and retracting applicator, this eyeliner goes on smoothly and can be really dramatic if you want. I will usually top it off with a thin layer of eyeshadow to keep it in place and to soften the look once finished.

9. Sephora’s eyelash curler – Never used a different brand! If you can handle the inevitable freak out every once in awhile (translation: my hands totally forgot how to use one of these contraptions and I just lost 3 eyelashes), it’s the perfect prep before your mascara. My short eyelashes normally need a boost, and this tool helps curl them into place.

10. Maybelline’s Great Lash mascara in Blackest Black – Though I’ve tried every mascara imaginable, I always come back to this one. It’s affordable and always an easy decision!

Do you use any of the same products in your daily makeup routine? What are some of your favorites? Anything I should try?

Have a great weekend!



Morning latte with a very special cousin

Can you believe it’s almost February? I certainly can’t. The first weeks of the New Year have been blissfully simple, and I thought I’d share a few Instagram photos with you (follow along @NookAndSea). What have you been up to?

NookAndSea-Blog-Chambray-Shirt-Button-Down-Top-Green-Shoes-Black-Pants-Paper-Bag-Succulent-SidewalkBringing a new little plant home from the Laguna Nursery

NookAndSea-Scrabble-Game-Board-NightScrabble night with some good friends (I actually got second place – a first)!

NookAndSea-Black-And-White-Dog-Puppy-MixThe dog I wish I had #MadisonTheRescuePup

NookAndSea-Light-Bulbs-Lamp-Hanging-Pendants-Wires-Wood-Beams-CeilingGreat vintage bulbs at Crow Burger Kitchen (side note: get the Cheeseburger, Cheeseburger, Cheeseburger. You won’t be disappointed)!

NookAndSea-Essie-Nail-Color-Brown-Mink-Muffs-Neutral-Earthy-Fall-Winter-HueBeen wearing this color non-stop: Essie’s Mink Muffs

NookAndSea-Sprinkles-Cupcakes-Newport-Beach-Corona-Del-Mar-Dessert-Sweets-DisplayThe perfect end to an already sweet date night!

i love you, knot



Well hello there! How is everyone’s week? Didn’t you just love Sara’s post yesterday (those mint jeans – totally cute)! I’ve been focused on keeping social lately as it seems my schedule always gets in the way. Sara and I had a fun date night over coffee + burgers, and it’s always so neat to engage in face-time with blogger-friends-turned-real-life (more on that later)! This week, I decided to poke around Pinterest for some beachy inspirations, and came across some unique ways to use rope for a nautical touch in any home (and wardrobe)!


vase, chandelier, bracelet, vintage crate


hanging shelves


DIY nautical tray table via Apartment Therapy


rope mirror and towel holder


print, knotted headband, rectangular mirror


vibrant + nautical table spread

NookAndSea-Bar-Rope-Counter-Pendants-Tilegreat bar setup via Design Sponge

Which look would you use? Happy Hump Day!

how to wear everyday sequins

Happy New Year, Nook & Sea readers! I hope 2013 is off to a fabulous start for you all. Every year around NYE, I (Sara) love watching girls put together their sparkliest and shiniest outfits to ring in another year. Since glitter and sequins are right up my alley, I adore the over-abundance of “shiny” around the holidays. But as soon as the clock strikes 12, I feel like the glitter pumps and sequined tube dresses get thrown into the back of the closet, only to be re-visited for costumes or the following NYE. Sometimes that’s a good thing, but other times I think people assume that sequins can only be worn for fancy cocktail parties or things of that nature. I’m here to bring you the great news – that’s simply not true!
When done tastefully and with discretion, sequins/sparkles can easily be incorporated into everyday looks. The biggest key is to downplay them with casual/understated/classic/masculine pieces that don’t draw too much attention to themselves. For example: if you decide to wear a sequin skirt as part of a daytime look, try pairing it with an unexpected flannel shirt, or a v-neck tee and flat boots. If you tried wearing a sequin skirt + sky-high stilettos you’ll only look like you’re heading to the clubs. With this outfit I took a cropped, sequined, sheer-backed top (sounds super classy when described that way, no?) and turned it into a pretty presentable outfit (if I must say so myself)! By adding a fitted blazer and high-waisted skinnies (I’ve left the midriff-bearing trend back in high school, thankfully), I made it so I could wear this top in my everyday life, and not just a swanky party.
Would you try to incorporate sequins into your casual wardrobe, or would you rather keep them for fancy nights out on the town?