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The Refined Man Is…Mentorship

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Juvan Langford is a Refined Man.

From the first moment I saw Juvan, I knew he was a leader.  Every pore of his body exudes leadership; it is just who he is.  He envisions a world where leaders create other leaders, where older men and women invest into the next generation of world changers.  He is committed to living a life of purpose.

This is a man that you want to know, because my friends he is going places.  He has a great Youtube Channel called Thought Life, and has many more projects in line to make this world a better place.

Now…say hello to my friend Juvan!

XO,

Kat

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Mentorship saved my life. My maternal grandmother legally adopted me at age 4 and I’ll never forget the day the adoption papers were officially signed. She sat my sister and I down on the couch and told us, “your father is with God in heaven and your mother has gone to get some help and so you’re both staying with me. Grandma is not going anywhere.” Although I had not fully comprehended the significance of that event, I did trust that Grandma was going to be there, no matter what. Interestingly enough, two decades have passed and that is exactly how I would define a mentor, a no matter what.

Mentorship is by far the most undervalued gift one person can give to another. If I were to paint a portrait to further illustrate this idea, the world would be one big room. On one side of the room there would be a large number of young people standing tall, but empty. On the other side you would see wise and seasoned individuals sitting, but filled with information.

Information is the only thing standing between where someone is right now in his or her life and wherever it is that they desire to be. It’s not that the young people don’t have dreams, goals and visions within them, they certainly do. It’s that the young people are not taking a seat and the wise ones are not taking a stand. It’s fair to say that this is not a problem, it’s the problem.

One of my most memorable mentorship relationships is with a phenomenal man I call, Pops. He was the father of one of my friends who offered me a ride home after football practice in junior high. He was aware of the fact that all was not well with me and offered to take me to hear me out over a bite to eat that evening. That was the most empowering conversation I had ever had with any man. He told me he believed in me, that I was bigger than my circumstances and that he was committed to being there for me, no mater what. Since that day he has not only kept his word but pours into me daily. My relationship with Pops provided me with an innerstanding™ that mentors are not meant to be looked up to for the answers, but looked into for wisdom.

The beauty lies in the fact that we are raised and surrounded by people who are carriers of information. I am certain that without the succession of mentors, who continuously stood for me, I would have entered into a life filled with obstacles. Mentorship is relational currency, an unapologetic exchange of support and resources between two individuals who recognize that the getting in the giving. This is precisely why it is my personal mission is to not only embody mentorship in my personal life, but also create a virtuous cycle of mentors around the globe. Deep and meaningful relationships are a essential, however, I am committed to shedding light on the power of mentorship to the extent that every child grows up with a “no matter what.”

-Juvan

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Photos by me:  Kat Harris

Discovering Brooklyn | A Lovely Universe

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Travel and exploration is near and dear to my heart.  (My next few months are jam packed with jet setting!!! Can’t wait to share with y’all).

In fact I would dare say it is one of my core values, or at least my life would lead you to believe that.

What I love most is being a tourist in my own city, finding those hidden, off the beaten path cafes + boutiques that only “the locals” know about.  Each day in Brooklyn I feel as though I discover another hidden gem, and this day was no different.

My sweet friend Hilary Rushford introduced me to this amazing boutique in Brooklyn called A Lovely Universe.  Like seriously ladies, when you walk in you’ll want to move there; it’s incredibly charming!

Here’s why I love A Lovely Universe:  they have such cute clothes (ahem…my blouse + accessories), and the cutest knick knacks for your house including coffee table books (I bought the Wes Anderson Coffee Table Book myself), and Brooklyn cardboard coasters, to martini shakers.

If you’re in Brooklyn you definitely need to check out this hidden gem…you won’t want to leave!

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I’m not a huge ring person, but I was all sorts of happy over this turquoise ring at A Lovely Universe.

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Honestly though, those antlers?  The cutest.

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Yes the uber fashionable gal, Sarah, I’m standing next to is owner/buyer/curator of the boutique.  I sort of want her to decorate my entire apartment!

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Photos by:  Sara Kerens

GREAT INVESTMENTS : Feat. Caitlin Flemming

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Caitlin is the amazing designer eye and founder behind Sacramento Street - one of our favorite design inspiration spots on the interwebs. 

We love her timeless fashion sense too - which makes her the perfect choice for sharing one of her wardrobe staples + our next installment in our Great Investments Series - the perfect city boot. 

After photographing these beautiful and functional boots I was pretty much convinced I needed my own pair. 

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Here’s what Caitlin has to say about her Great Investment:

When it comes to my wardrobe I’m constantly reminding myself that I need to purchase quality investment pieces that are timeless and classic. When Emily and Kat asked me to be part of this series I was totally in - I truly believe that it’s better to have quality clothing over quantity. I thought about a lot of pieces that I could feature, but the item that I kept going back to were my Isabel Marant Dicker booties. I can honestly say I don’t know what I would do without these beauties. They have gone on every trip with me for the past three or so years. I’m all about comfort and style -these provide both of those elements. I’ve walked miles upon miles in them while traveling, at trade shows and up the hills of San Francisco. Since I wear them so often I’m on my second pair and they are worth every penny. I’ve definitely got my cost per wear out of them a dozen times over.

So, if you’re looking for your next go-to pair of shoes, these babies are for you!

XO,

Caitlin

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Sneak Peek at our Next Great Investment Post : with Erin from Apartment 34!

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I sure do love my job, getting to hang out with women who inspire me like these two incredible entrepreneurs. Girl power. 

xo,

Em

OUTFIT : Stripes in The City

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I really feel that pregnant women everywhere owe Jenna Lyons a solid for bringing New Balance sneakers to the Style Guide this past year. My feet are happier than they have ever been and I owe it all to the Crew. 

Also loving : my husband (for so many reasons) and also for getting me this new top by Hatch Collection for Christmas. It makes all the difference in the world to wear something that makes me feel like I look good when I’m starting to not really feel very good - being pregnant is amazing but it’s tough work for sure. He’s a keeper. 

This was the perfect outfit for walking around the city a bit last weekend. We dined on Toast at the Mill and did a little window shopping in the Mission afterwards. 

Shop the look : 

top : hatch collection / jeans : j brand maternity / sneaks : new balance for jcrew / purse : clare vivier / sunglasses : karen walker

xo,

Em

OUTFIT : Keep it Real

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REAL TALK. 

We all go through seasons where it’s tough to feel inspired to dress well. Whether we’re overworked, overwhelmed, sick, or just tired, it’s real life. I confess that I am right in the thick of one of those seasons.

While I’m so grateful for the gift I truly feel that we’ve been given, I’ve been struggling to keep everything running and get inspired to get dressed. The reality of most days is that it’s a struggle to get out of my sweatpants. 

During these times I think it’s important to find a few staple pieces to help make it through. Things that are easy to layer, throw on together, things that coordinate - whatever it takes to not look just like a real hot mess. 

Recently when my dear friend Gina was in San Francisco I showed her around the city, and she snapped a few photos for fun on her film camera. I didn’t plan out a big outfit. I haven’t had my hair cut or colored in months. I barely got out of the house with mascara on. 

But I love these photos - this is real life. These are my staples right now that I throw on when I am just trying to hold it all together. 

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Scarf : Jcrew (old) Similar here

Coat : Urban Outfitters

Tee : Everlane

Leggings : American Apparel

Moccasins : Minnetonka

Sunglasses : Dior

Cap : Jcrew

Bag : Dooney & Bourke

Thanks for listening, friends. 

And seriously thank you to Gina Zeidler for these images, a true snapshot of my life right now. 

xo,

Em

ps. More posts with army jackets HERE and HERE!

OUTFIT Post: Camo for Fall

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I think Em and I have super powers.  When one of us is feeling a certain thing, the other is too.  We are both feeling camo for this fall.  You know me and my fear of prints?  Well slowly, in my own way, I am incorporating some louder pieces into my wardrobe.

Mixed patterns + prints is where I would love to be one day in my style, but for now I like to have one bold piece i.e. my camo pants, and keep everything else very classic + simple.

Sidenote…when I tried on this collarless blazer from Madewell, I melted.  I already worn it a gazillion times, and it’s quickly become a wardrobe staple for me.

So how do you feel about camo for fall?  Are you in?

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Photos by:  Sarah Shreves; Wardrobe styling by:  Johan Khalilian

Outfit Deets

Collarless Blazer:  Madewell

White Blouse:  Madewell

Camo Pants:  Madewell

Red Belt:  Target

Stewardess bag:  Coach

NYFW: Photo Journal

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The past week has been a blur of fashion shows, high heels, brunches, meetings, hailing taxis, catching subways, new friends, old friends, Lincoln Center, parties, not so much sleep…well you know it’s been New York Fashion Week.

Em and I had such a wonderful time in February.  We both were exhausted by the end of it, but got to experience some beautiful moments, and met some of our biggest fashion inspirations (and we totally geeked out about it!)

It was such a different experience going without Em this time, but she had to hold down the fort in San Fran (someone’s gotta do it!), and it was also another thing entirely to be apart of NYFW as a NYC resident! 

My hope entering into the tornado that can be Fashion Week was to stay grounded, have meaningful conversations with new friends, and be inspired.  Finding stillness in the chaos is ever my quest!

I think my goal was accomplished.  Enjoy some of my favorite NYFW moments from the last week that I photographed!

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Below is blogger + Lolo mag editor Shannon.  My favorite part of being with her was grabbing drinks after Rebecca Minkoff, and talking about boys for well over an hour!

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Here’s what I wore to Rebecca Minkoff.  My staple Club Monaco White Blazer + Madewell Cobalt blue Dress.

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Saturday morning I got to hang out with amazing set designer Stacy Suvino in West Village (who styled the Darling Magazine Summer Cover).  This Oklahoma girl is extremely talented!

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Sunday was all about Trina:  the Trina Turk Spring 2014 collection.  This collection made me want to jump right over winter and just get back into spring.  The bright colors and light hearted feel to this collection was a breath of fresh air!

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They even did a live editorial shoot during the presentation!  So fun!

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After Trina Michelle, Jessie of Style + Pepper, Beth of BJones Style, and I went to the Reward Style Party on a rooftop.  Yep.  Rooftop party at Fashion Week:  Check.

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Monday Beth and I ran around town all day for different meetings!  First stop Jennifer at Pink Cloud Vintage.  Umm…I died when I saw this vintage Chanel purse.  I neeeeeeeeed.

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Beth tried on some rad dresses!

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Beth with Pink Cloud owner Jennifer who may be the cutest prego ever.

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Did I mention we went to the Coach offices, and got to go through the Coach Archives?  This was a preppy city girls’ dream (uummm…ya I’m talking about myself in third person).

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Monday ended with the Alice and Olivia Spring 2014 presentation.  This was by far my favorite collection this fall.  The attention to detail was so beautiful, and I just cannot get over the silhouettes, the mixed textures and patterns.  Ahhh…just so much yumminess!

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These three ladies together were my favorite grouping of looks.

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When I saw this bedazzled crop cardigan with boyfriend jeans all I could think of was how me this outfit was.  I mean honestly guys…I need it.

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The below mint leather pleated skirt + denim jacket look is my favorite outfit from this collection; it’s super wearable and totally ME!

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Oh ya… and then Dan Humphrey’s sister showed up (holla Gossip Girl fans…xoxo, Gossip Girl)

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Until February…goodbye Fashion Week.

XO,

Kat

The Refined Man : Aaron Scott

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A few weeks ago Kat introduced our new series, The Refined Man… 

"The men we have chosen to feature are clothed with integrity, honor, character, ambition and vitrue. His ability to put a solid outfit together isn’t what makes him who he is. He embraces his outfit as a form of expression, not his essence.”

I could not be more proud to introduce my husband to you, Aaron Scott. Now, I feel a bit biased, and I’m sure I could brag about him all day, but if there is one word he truly embodies is integrity

He does the things he says he is going to do. He cares about quality over quantity. He takes care of me. He respects my decisions and allows me the freedom to pursue my passion and art. He is my biggest cheerleader.  

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I love his style because it’s totally and 100% his own. Sometimes he asks my opinion on what to wear and most of the time disagrees with me and does what he wants to instead. 

A few of Aaron’s favorite things : 

1. His Fjallraven jacket

2. His oversized Wayfarers 

3. His Timex watch

4. His Boat Shoes

5. His Bonobos Chinos 

He also loves color, and stripes, and anything jcrew. (It’s usually a bad idea for us to go together.)

I could not be a luckier woman. I’m excited to share him with you here.

xo

Em

ps. all photos by me from our recent trip to France

Rue Magazine | The High Waisted Trouser

We are so honored to have been featured on Rue Magazine yesterday under their style section.  Rue is such a wonderful place to be inspired whether you’re looking for your closet, home, or entertainment.  These girls have it down!

Em + I were guest bloggers yesterday, and talked about the high waisted trouser, because they are totally having a moment.  Ladies get a pair for the fall!

Go check out the full post at RUE

On Kat:

Blouse:  JCrew

Belt:  JCrew

High Waisted Trouser: Zara

Purse:  Coach

On Em:

Blouse: Uniqlo

Trousers: JCrew (similar)

Shoes:  Christian Louboutin

XOXO,

Kat + Em

Refined on a Dime: The Chambray Shirt

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Welcome to the second of our Refined on a Dime series.  Last week I got to spend time with thrift store extraordinaire Beth Jones of BJones Style.  Seriously this woman knows how to find a deal!  I’m still learning the ropes of how to thrift well, and not curl up under a clothing rack and suck my thumb (people it’s overwhelming…sooo many racks of clothes!)

But…I’m learning, and with the help of ladies like Beth, I feel that in no time at all I will be a thrift queen.

Our goal for this Refined on a Dime was to take the intimidation out of thrifting.  We did this by bringing our favorite piece of denim with us to the thrift store, and our aim being to complete the look.

Beth brought her favorite pair of dark high waisted denim skinny jeans, and I brought my light denim button up.  I knew I wanted to find a cute skirt or dress to pair with my top, and that I’d want to find an oversized belt to sinch my waist.  

Ladies going in with a goal made my experience a million times better.  I knew what I was looking for, so I wasn’t wrought with feelings of panic at the rows and rows and rows of clothing racks.

Tip #1:  Go in with a Goal!

Also, I knew I didn’t want to spend a lot of money.  My goal was to get an outfit under $20, and I ended up getting a whole outfit plus an extra shirt for $14!  

Tip #2:  Have a budget in mind.

Tip #3:  No pressure!

For those of you ladies that are new to thrifting like me, keep these three tips in mind!  You can do it.  If I can, you can.  And also, just have fun with it.  No pressure!  I believe in you:)

Check out Beth’s Post + Video on our thrift outing here!

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Picking a shot for instagram…obvi.

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SPARKLY KEDS!!!  I really blew it not buying these babies.

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Beth helping me figure out which skirt to get.  She’s urging me to get out of my comfort zone and take more fashion risks.  People this is scary.  You know I love blue, white, and tan!

Now onto the complete outfits!

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We’re being models.  Can’t you tell??

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Ok…we had so much fun!  Ya, I definitely want to do this again!

Michelle Kim thanks for taking such rad pics of us!  I just love you girl!