Ten Under Twenty

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Vacationing is (obviously) one of my favorite parts about the summer months! Who doesn’t love some time to unwind and relax? I’m gearing up for a fabulous family vacation out West with hiking, mountain views, and locally brewed beer. Perfection, right? I absolutely can’t wait. I’m creating a fun list of things to do to annoy my brother-in-law on the four hour flight out, so feel free to share any ideas.

While I’m pumped to have a change of scene, living close to the beach makes it easy to have “staycations” right in my own backyard, too. A few of my girlfriends and I have some beach weekends in the works and I can almost taste the margaritas already.

If you’re like me – you like to stock up on a few new items for trips. Time to unwind and relax is made even better with a new bathing suit or sunglasses. Plus, would it be a successful trip without a bulging suitcase you can hardly zip shut? In keeping with my tighter budget (and my blog’s totally awesome Ten for Twenty feature), I’m sharing a few of my budget friendly vacation picks with you! Several of these finds are even under $10 (which means they are Dad approved!).

Do you have any fun trips coming up? I’d love to hear about them!

XO,

CydneySign

Pops of Neon

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When J. Crew was having a super sale, I bought two of these linen baseball tees. The first, I styled a few weeks ago and leaned toward a more sporty look. I am absolutely in love with the shirt’s lightweight linen blend and it’s perfect for these horribly hot South Florida days.

For baseball tee look number two, I went for something a little dressier. Paired with black jeans and some wedges, this shirt is perfect for a night out with my girlfriends. And the pops of neon (bright pink lips are one of the only things I like about summer) and leopard help keep the look fun!

Frozen margaritas are another of my summer positives – so now that I’m dressed for happy hour – who’s in?

I hope everyone has a wonderful week!

XO,

CydneySign

SHOP TODAY’S LOOK: J. Crew Tee (sold out, similar here), Old Navy Jeans, Steve Madden Wedges (old, similar here), Kate Spade Saturday Earrings (on sale!), J. Crew Clutch (sold out, similar here)

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Selfie On

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A few weeks ago, my Dad sent me his very first selfie. He was waiting for his plane to board at the airport and wanted to show me his stylish new Jansport backpack. The crooked photo was 90% of my Dad’s chin and 10% backpack. It was awesome.

My Dad’s airport selfie attempt made me smile from ear to ear. But it also got me thinking about selfies in general. When did the selfie trend start? How did selfies become such a social media staple (enough so that iPhone would allow you to flip your camera lens in order to take one and fashion mogul Sincerely, Jules would make a fabulous t-shirt encouraging them)? Is there a right way to take a selfie? And what’s with all the selfie stigmas?

Poignantly, ‘selfie’ was just added to the Merriam-Webster dictionary. The word – along with ‘hashtag’ – will appear in the 2014 print edition of the collegiate dictionary. It will officially be defined as: “an image of oneself taken by oneself using a digital camera especially for posting on social networks.”

Well, no offense, Webster, but I’m going to rewrite the definition of selfie. And if the dictionary hasn’t gone to print yet, feel free to steal it (disclaimer: with the above selfie of me following the definition, of course).

Simply Cydney’s Definition of a Selfie: “A self-centered and totally fabulous snapshot of oneself taken by oneself and used for posting on social networks and making oneself feel beautiful.”

Have you ever noticed that selfies are often posted on our social media channels with diminishing captions and hashtags? I know that anytime I post a selfie, I feel the need to hashtag something like #selfietime #dontjudge #toooldforselfies #takingoneanyway #lastone

#etcetera.

And I know many of my friends post captions like this, too. Perhaps you’re like me and you wonder if your social media followers will judge you for posting another purposeless picture of yourself. I always fear I’ll lose some of my precious Instagram followers (followers are like gold for a blogger) when I post a selfie.

Sometimes I selfie (I hope Merriam-Webster understands this can be a verb, too) to show off a new pair of sunglasses. Sometimes I selfie because I’m bored at a red light or in the waiting room (and, yes, the room is empty) of a doctor’s office. And sometimes I selfie just because I think I look freaking fabulous. My guess is many of you selfie for the same reasons.

Food for thought: is thinking you look beautiful really something you need to diminish? The selfie stigma is somewhat shameful (hello, alliteration). But why? Why isn’t it socially acceptable to hashtag #lookinggood #greathairday #damnnnngirl when you want to post a pretty picture of yourself? Because isn’t a selfie always an amazing picture? After all, who would post a bad selfie of themselves? Hideous pictures are what Throw Back Thursday is for.

And yes, posting a selfie is self-centered. Doesn’t the root of the word made that clear? But is that such a bad thing? If you try to be a good person, and you spend a decent chunk of your life helping others and working for the greater good, is it really so awful to take a few minutes to celebrate YOU?

And isn’t it possible that posting a selfie is more for the poster than for the followers? Most of my friends know what I look like, so they probably couldn’t care less about my picture. But when I post a nice selfie of myself, I feel pretty. And like most women, I don’t always feel that way. My selfies don’t show my love handles or the bags under my eyes when I wake up in the morning. My selfies don’t highlight the forehead wrinkle easing its way into my life or the giant pimple on the side of my nose (I always angle a selfie to the right). Those imperfections are definitely there and they are nothing to be ashamed or embarrassed of. We all have our insecurities and I’m the first to say that imperfections have a time and place to be celebrated, too. But it’s also OK to forget about them for a few minutes.

Being able to take a photo of ourselves gives us an opportunity to capture a brief moment where those insecurities are cropped out or unpictured. Unlike photos tagged by a friend where you’re blinking or posing unflatteringly (while your friend looks like the next Victoria’s Secret model), selfies give you a chance to highlight what you see as the best in yourself. I don’t believe most selfies to be the heralded fear that young people are looking for social media to validate them. I believe selfies are an expression of self-validation: of young people and old people and everyone in between saying “Hey! I think I actually look pretty good here!”

And why can’t we celebrate and share that? What is so wrong or so shameful about knowing your best angle and rocking it? What is so wrong about knowing your hair looks amazing on any given day? And what is so wrong about feeling beautiful? In my opinion, a selfie embodies how we all should live our lives: seeing the beautiful best in ourselves! In the same way, selfies can help us see the beauty in others, too. Instead of judging someone else for taking another picture of themselves, take a minute to throw them a compliment and throw a little love into the world. Even the serial-selfie takers among us can appreciate a sweet compliment.

Today (and everyday), I encourage you to selfie. Slap on some lipstick (or not!), flip that iPhone camera lens, and selfie away (yes, you too, dad). Select what you find to be the prettiest picture you took of yourself, upload it to your social media, and hashtag it properly.

#feelingbeautiful

Because you are. And that’s an OK feeling. And once YOU are feeling beautiful, go out into the world and do something beautiful for someone else.

Snap your beauty. See it. And believe it.

Selfie on, beautiful friends. Selfie on.

CydneySign

Application

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It’s Memorial Day and summer is officially upon us. White shoes are socially acceptable again, hot dogs are roasting and beer sunscreen is flowing. And…it is freaking humid.

Year after year, I find myself approaching the hot days of summer in need of a very specific acquaintance. In the past, my social media outreach has not proven successful, so as such, I’m reaching out to the blogosphere with this important advertisement:

WANTED: A FRIEND WITH A BOAT

Requirements:

  • Boat owner must live in Florida (although applicants living in Italy with a private jet to fly me there on the weekends will be considered).
  • The boat cannot be of the paddle or inflatable varieties.
  • Boat owner must understand that I will wear fabulous sailing-themed attire while boating but I should not be expected to actually help maneuver the boat.
  • Boat owner will never ask me to get in the ocean. Have you seen the Great White Shark floating around the Florida coast?!
  • Boat owner will take photos of me on the boat for my blog, Instagram, and Facebook. Owner will allow me to pretend the boat is mine: #blessed #mynewboat #setsailwithcyd

In exchange for invitations out on the boat every weekend (and adherence to the requirements above), I promise to be the life of the party and keep the boat owner’s cooler stocked with delicious beer. So long as owner’s definition of delicious beer is a six pack for under $7.99.

Please apply within.

CydneySign

SHOP TODAY’S POST: Old Navy Dress, Loft Sweater, David Yurman Sunglasses, Old Navy Sandals, Kate Spade Ring (on sale), Yuengling (can’t link because that stuff is priceless)

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Summer Brights

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In my opinion, there’s no such thing as too much neon.

Or too much J. Crew.

That is all the wisdom I have for you today.

CydneySign

SHOP TODAY’S POST: J. Crew Factory Top (style here, similar colors here, and short sleeved version here), Old Navy Jeans (sold out online, may be available still in store!), Michael Kors Shoes, J. Crew Clutch (on sale and monogrammed for just $10 more!), J. Crew Factory Necklace (on sale!), Ray-Ban Sunglasses

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Scarf Up

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With the warmer weather ahead, I’ve tucked most of my winter weather clothes into the back of the closet. I’m always a little sad to see my warmer clothes go as Fall and Winter fashion is my favorite! One of my favorite style combinations is a scarf with a graphic tee and leather jacket. While I won’t be getting much use out of my jacket for the next few months, I will still be utilizing scarves as a spring and summer staple!

In my opinion, a fun scarf pulls an outfit together. I’m loving these Spring and Summer styles in some of my favorite stores now. I love pairing them with tanks and jeans or pretty sundresses. And for those of you Florida girls, many of these will transition nicely into Fall and “Winter” months down south (when all of my friends up North are pulling their wool back out again!).

Happy Shopping!

 CydneySign

Boyfriend Knows Best

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A few months ago, I was shopping with Erik when we stumbled across a few camo t-shirts for women. Let me preface this by saying that my boyfriend is actually incredibly fashionable and his desire to look presentable and put together is one of my favorite things about him. When we saw the camo tees, though, we had a little disagreement. Erik tried to convince me to buy one as he’d read somewhere that “camo is coming back.”

“Camo,” I told him arrogantly, “is best left for my cousins in Kansas on their hunting trips.” Erik tried to tell me again that he’d seen that the style was returning to the fashion world, but I continued to shut him down. I’m the slightest bit difficult. Especially at the mall. What can I say? We left the camo tee on the rack.

But sure enough – the boyfriend knew best.

Within the next few weeks, I started seeing the camo trend everywhere. At first I wondered if he had paid off a few of my favorite bloggers to wear camo items and prove me wrong, but then I stumbled across a few features in my fashion magazines. It seemed that Erik was *cough* right.

As such, I scooped up a few camo pieces on my next shopping trip. I tried to subtly ease them into my wardrobe, but the first time I wore one in front of him, Erik all but screamed: “HEY! I thought camo was best left for your cousins in Mississippi!” Kansas, Erik. Kansas.

I don’t like being wrong, but I must admit that this trend is a fun one and I’m glad the Kansas boys aren’t the only ones benefitting from it. I love pairing camo with bright pink (like this fabulous MAC lipstick). It’s the perfect way to take the edge off the harsher neutrals and make the print a little less quail-hunting-expedition and a little bit girlier. I’ll be wearing my few pieces all summer and having to mutter “you were right, Erik” every time. Because, Ok, ok – he knew best.

This once.

CydneySign

SHOP TODAY’S POST: Old Navy Camo Top (almost sold out, similar here), Old Navy Jeans, Phillip Lim 3.1 Handbag (old, similar here), Tiffany & Co Pendant, Steve Madden Shoes (old, similar here), Ray-Ban Sunglasses

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