Hello lovelies, I’m baaaaack!

Well, I’m back in the United States that is. After almost six months away, I am back in St. Louis. Since I recently got back to the U.S., it’s been a week full of visiting friends, spending time with my family, and catching up on all the stuff that I missed while I was living in Spain. It’s been a surprisingly easier transition than I was expecting getting back to life in the U.S. Despite having meals at different times and being seven hours ahead of Spain, I think I’m getting the hang of it pretty fast. I’m also eating my way through St. Louis, hitting all of my favorite places that I missed while I was abroad, hehe.

I already know that this summer is going to be pretty wonderful, and also fly by super fast! Today I’m flying out to New York for VS Pink’s CampPink, so be sure to check out my social media for a behind-the-scenes look at all that’s going to go on there! I’m elated to have been selected to attend the camp and I can’t wait for all the cool people that I’ll get to meet while I’m there!

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So, life has been a little surreal doing things and visiting the places that I haven’t been to for months. But I can already tell that it’s going to be a great summer. And…I brought back a bit of my European fashion sense back with me and I’ve been wearing lots of clothing that would fit in that style.

This outfit that I wore today for starters really just feels “me”. A jumpsuit, jean jacket, leather backpack, + my Superstars would be my summer uniform if I had to wear the same thing every day. It’s just such a versatile, comfy outfit that makes me feel great and confident in!

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I’m also debuting my new look featuring my lovely hair extension piece by Irresistible Me! This is something that I absolutely am loving, especially for the summer months, because it’s a way to have a new look without spending a lot of time on my hair. As many of you know, my hair is naturally extremely curly and unmanageable (you can see examples in this post of my natural hair), so it takes at least an hour to straighten it. Then, after it is straightened, I’ll step outside for about five minutes and it’s turned completely frizzy and crazy in the St. Louis humidity.

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But, after I received this ponytail extension clip in, it’s SO easy to go out for the night with #1 longer hair that looks amazing, but also #2, hair that actually stays straight! I can clip this right over my own hair, even if it’s all pulled back in a bun, and it looks incredibly natural. I have this ponytail in ash blonde and it’s 20 inches long ~ it even perfectly matches my hair color! It’s really great because it’s pretty lightweight so even when it’s hot and sticky out, it really doesn’t feel like you have as much hair as there is! I can’t stop talking about my fun new trick of wearing this extension and I know I’ll be wearing it pretty much all summer long.

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Another fun addition to my outfit is my new pair of adidas Superstars that I just got for my birthday from my mom! I got them about a week ago and they haven’t left my feet since! I am absolutely obsessed. So, from debuting my new hair look and my new shoes, I feel like I already know what my summer staples will be. How about you? What kinds of things are you crushing on this summer? A fun necklace? A new tote? Let me know + share a link ~ I’d love to see some of your favorite things for these next few summer months!

Much love,

Olivia

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Living in Alicante has brought me the gift of Stradivarius, my absolute favorite store in the world now. Fortunately (read unfortunately for my wallet) I live right down the street from it, so I’m honestly in the store at least twice a week to check everything out. Consequently, a large portion of my wardrobe has evolved into clothing from the store. Let’s just say the first time I logged onto their website and found out that can’t ship to the U.S., I almost cried.

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This has quickly become my favorite store and I don’t know what I’ll do without my weekly trips there when I come back to the U.S. At the risk of sounding really wasteful and spending my money all the time, I want to clarify and say that most times I simply walk through the store for inspiration. That’s why I’ll continue to follow them on social media just so I can be inspired by their constant outfits that they piece together. I mean, now that I’ve been hit with the European fashion bug, I never want it to end. From culottes to leather jackets to anything in between, I really have admired the Spanish + European way of dressing since I got here, day one.

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While everything clothes-wise is from Stradivarius (I’ll still include links at the end of the post for my Spanish readers), the sunglasses are my babies from H&M that I never leave the house without, and my shoes are the most versatile lovelies from Topshop when I was in Madrid. It was probably a blessing in disguise that we don’t have one here in Alicante, or I’d be coming back to the U.S. with a little bit less in my bank account, haha.

While I’m excited to get back to the U.S. and see my family (and eat lots of Chipotle and Chick-fil-a, let’s be real), I will absolutely miss so many things about European living. One of them is fashion. When I wore this outfit to campus here to the Universidad de Alicante, I blended right in. If I wore this to the University of Missouri, I would either be asked what my problem was for dressing up that much or what time my interview was. While I still plan on bringing this European fashion sense back to the U.S., it definitely will look a little different.

With that being said, I have only four days left here in my beloved beach town. I honestly don’t know what I’m going to do with my afternoon trips to my favorite cafe where my best friends work, my morning walks to the beach, or eating gelato way too many times a month. Today I not only wanted to share this outfit with you but also just kind of take some time to share how much of a wonderful experience I have had here in Alicante. This semester has truly changed my life in so many ways and I am coming away from this with “ojos abiertos” or open eyes to the world around me and with an understanding of how so many different cultures think and act.

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This has been a life-changing experience and I couldn’t be happier that I had it, but also that I got to experience all of these things with my best friend. Josh and I grew so much together in our relationship and it meant the world to me that we were so blessed with that ability. Initially, I left St. Louis not so sure about how it would go, traveling together with Josh. But after almost six months abroad together, I wouldn’t want it to have been any other way.

When I get back to the U.S., I jump back into the world of summer classes, internships, and all things summer in the life of a college student. But, I’m looking forward to sleeping in my own bed, spending the entire summer with my family, and exploring around St. Louis nonstop. This summer, I plan on doing a lot (and I mean a lot) of blogging about all of my Europe travels. I have lots of guides in the works, especially about the seven cities that I visited over spring break! So I have a lot of goodies coming your way this summer!

Have a great week and please keep me in your prayers as I adjust back to life in the U.S. this upcoming week!

Much love,

Olivia

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Stradivarius Clothing Links

// pants // jacket // top //

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Living in a beach town, I can honestly say that the weather is incredible. Life here in Alicante is usually warm and sunny. However, this weekend was a little cooler than normal so I had a chance to wear some of my favorite outfits that I hadn’t been able to in a while.

Something I’ve been super obsessed with lately are neckties. Although in the past they were something I could never have seen myself wearing, I am a changed woman after experiencing European fashion. So, this weekend I was able to debut my new necktie from ZARA. I’ve seen a lot of people around town wearing them, and when I was in Madrid last weekend, it felt like everyone was sporting one. It’s so chic and fun and it also just adds this extra element of classy to whatever outfit you are wearing.

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I love everything about wearing neckties because not only are there a million and one ways to style them, you can also turn it into a headband for a fun twist! I know that ZARA has a really amazing selection of them right now but after looking at Topshop, Stradivarius, and some other stores, I’m starting to see more and more at other places as well. It’s definitely an inexpensive thing to incorporate to your outfit (Mine was under $8)!

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Where to buy:

 ZARA Necktie

Stradivarius jacket

Eddie Bauer shirt (last season)

 H&M skirt (similar)

Topshop shoes

 H&M sunglasses

I hope you’re soaking up all the weather wherever you’re at and embracing it as a challenge to create new outfits for whatever the climate is like where you live! Much love!

Olivia

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It’s starting to get a little warmer here in Alicante {finally} and all I can think about is spending my time on the beach every day after my classes finish. It’s been pretty chilly though so we’ve been playing volleyball a lot on the beach in hoodies and leggings. Now that there’s some more sun in the sky, I’m already prepping my outfits for days where I can actually soak up some rays and read my book on my towel in the sand. Here is one outfit that I planned out that I’m getting some major inspo from! One of the tabs on my browser is currently open checking to see if I can get this towel shipped to Spain because COME ON! I’m obsessed.

Athletic Beach Day
 There will be a more girly-girl beach look coming soon but until then, this is my outfit that’s inspired by going to the beach for a day of volleyball and walking around exploring. Were you on the beach anywhere for spring break? I’ve loved seeing all of my friends’ pictures on Facebook of their spring break trips! What are some of your beach-inspired looks this season? There’s lots of new trends coming up that I’m seriously loving!
Much love as always,
Olivia
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This post has been one that I have wanted to write since the day I hopped off the airplane and arrived in Spain, but I decided that I should wait, because I wanted a little more knowledge on the subject before writing this.

Fashion in Spain is an entirely different world. When I walked on the campus of my new university Universidad de Alicante, after carefully getting ready, I felt like I looked like I had just rolled out of bed compared to most of the girls there.

Honestly, Spain is opening my eyes and my fashion sense to another world of style. I’m wearing tights for crying out loud. My new favorite stores have become Stradivarius, Zara, and Promod without a doubt. Since I live in Alicante’s shopping district (a blessing for me and a curse for my wallet, haha), I see some of the most fashionably dressed women walking around every single day on their way to work or shopping.

Some of the things I’m starting to like, I honestly hated before. I own this pair of leather shoes and a leather jacket which I wear proudly every. single. day. While I still maintain my love for all fashion with a bohemian flair, it is toned down a bit and definitely has more of an “urban chic” bend to it now.

There are some very distinctive looks to me that really stand out as far as Spanish fashion goes.

First, we have what I call the Formal Athlete.

For instance, this girl loves to look athletic, but with a fancy twist so that they could wear this outfit to a formal dinner party and fit right in. This girl wears her adidas tennis shoes everywhere she goes, but with tights of course. Then, she pairs a cute mini skirt over her tights, accompanied by a turtleneck sweater. To top it off, she’ll pull her hair back into a sleek ponytail, put on a cute pair of earrings, and toss her backpack over her shoulder to complete the look. I see a trendy girl my age wearing this style of outfit everywhere I go. It’s fun, versatile and dressy.

All I’m saying is this is a much more refreshing take on the leggings/yoga pants and t-shirt athletic look that’s popular at my university, haha.

 

European Athletic Style
 Now, something that I was very surprised at, at least here in Spain, is that open-toed shoes are a huge no-no. This isn’t just as far as fashion goes, I feel like it even borders on inappropriate if you break out the shoes that show your freshly painted toes. I was quite surprised the first day that I wore my open toed shoes out on a particularly nice day. Honestly the death stares and shaking heads were enough to make me want to run back to my apartment and change ASAP. So, with that being said, I’ve bought several pairs of cute closed-toed shoes in order to avoid the old women scowls. The shoes in these two looks today are common looks that I wanted to share with you because every time I’m out, I without fail see tons of women in the adidas superstar shoes or in high heels. It’s the Spanish shoe staples.
Another thing to note is the fact that no one wears hats. Even if you’re talking super cute big, floppy hats, to baseball caps. No one wears hats. It’s like wearing a huge banner wrapped around you saying “I am not from here!!!”. Needless to say, I bring my favorite big hat with me when I travel to other cities just because I don’t have to spend a lot of time doing my hair then on vacation, but on the daily, it stays hanging on its hook on the wall.
So for this next outfit, I think I’ll call it The Everyday European.
One thing that I notice to be so true is that every European woman has great taste in outerwear. This really proves to work out well for them because honestly if they want to be lazy and dress down, all they have to do is throw on their fancy coat and they’ll have fooled everyone. This is what I’m starting to pick up on too, whenever I don’t feel like putting all the effort into choosing a cute outfit for the day.
The women who wear this outfit have a lot to do and little time to do it. But, they want to look pulled together during their busy day. They’ll pull on their favorite pair of denim, and a cute but cozy ruffled top. They’ll perfectly {and minimalistically} accessorize with their purse and favorite watch. Finally they decide to have a dash of color in their outfit with some fun, pink pumps. And before they head out the door, they throw on their best coat that brings them an extra layer of warmth and style.
Everyday Europe
 Well, with that, those are my two favorite types of outfits so far that I see on the daily while I’m living here in Spain. However in about two weeks, I leave to travel to many cities in Europe because I have my vacation from school, so I’m sure when I get back, I’ll have a lot more styles that will have influenced me that I’ll have seen in places like Copenhagen, Brussels, or Milan!
I’ll keep you posted and as always, much love!
Olivia
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