Go there: Nantucket

As a New Englander I have loved my summer time in Nantucket.  Instagram does not lie on this one, the island is truly as beautiful as it looks through the curated lens.  The sweet cottages covered in roses, the hydrangeas that look like they can’t possibly be real and the super cute cobblestone streets all make me so happy I could squeal.. and I do! every. time.  Now look, I realize that what I am about to outline may not be groundbreaking for those familiar with the island but not everyone is familiar with this little slice of heaven, so let me break it down for those who have not yet had the pleasure.

Where to stay

Either we rent a house or stay at the White Elephant but there are many other great places as well.  I have heard good things about, The Veranda House and I stayed once at the Jared Coffin House but the room was so small I can’t really comment on much.

I have stayed in the White Elephant main house, the cottages and the village.  All are great. 

The cottages are just adjacent to the property and have a sweet little courtyard in the back.  Many different room and suite options.  I have stayed there with my mom for mother daughter trips.

White elephant main house, convenient and cozy.  Some rooms have fireplaces and balconies. Suites available

The village, perfect for families.  Some have kitchens which is great for families.  Eating some meals back at the pad is a great option since eating out can get very pricy but also not always convenient when you have little one who need to eat, like NOW.  There is also a pool on property.  You can use it if you stay in the main house but it is located at the village.

The cottage I stayed in with my mom

Lounging on the front lawn

The main hotel and the front lawn

Where to eat

Millie’s *kid friendly*, Madaket

Right next to the beach, great drinks and realllly good food. Elevated casual. Beach attire totally fine.

Greydon House, in town

Roman and Williams interiors, great food, great drinks

View of Greydon House from the street

Interiors at Greydon House in the bar area

Interiors at Greydon House in the restaurant

Cru, in town

Kind of a scene but beautiful interiors and great view.  Go for an adult night out for either dinner or drinks.

Great views at Cru

Topper’s @ Wauwinet

Get ready to spend some serious ‘do re mi’ but it is a one of a kind experience.  It is located at Wauwinet, the White Elephant sister property.  I like to go once a season.  If you are staying in or close to town you can make a reservation through the White Elephant for 5pm at the boat, you take the White Elephant boat (dock in front of the White Elephant lawn) to the restaurant and have a three course meal and then take the boat back at 8.  They serve cocktails on the boat on the way there and you can take a cocktail with you from the restaurant on the way back but after the martinis you may not need it! Great sunset and great way to take in the island.  Boat ride cocktails are free but you will feel like you deserve it once you get the bill for dinner.


Boat ride from White Elephant to Topper’s

The lawn at Wauwinet

Martini service anyone? On the lawn at Wauwinet

View from the boat as you walk to the lawn

Sunset and hydrangeas on the lawn

Met Main *kid friendly*, in town

Great hangover food. Great drinks. I like this place for brunch.  You can make your own bloody Mary’s with a mini burger as a topper. Great interior and great patio out back.

Inside at Met Main

Ventuno *kid friendly* but go early, in town

This place has the best Italian food but the back patio turns into a bit of a scene when the sun goes down.  I love sitting on the back patio for dinner and not moving as it gets crowded!

Chanticleer *kid friendly*, Sconset

This place is so charming, from the blue and white gingham table cloths to the carefully thought over garden and merry go round vintage horse this restaurant has nailed it.  The food is great.  I like a table outside on the patio.  After lunch take a walk around ‘Sconset and check out all of the cottages.

Outside patio

The Rose house in ‘Sconset

For brunch you have to go to the White Elephant Brant Point Grill.  Weekends, they have a buffet brunch that is the best.  

Galley Beach, near Jetties

Great for sunset drinks

Galley Beach

The Pearl, in town

Food is very good, Asian fusian.  Very filling!


Where to go: Beaches


This is my favorite beach. Surf is pretty tame. You can park and the beach is right there, you don’t have to hike to lay out your stuff.  The beach is also pretty wide open, you can take a nice walk and hunt for shells.  Always pop into Millie’s for lunch.  They have great Cisco cocktails and the most amazing food.  It is super close to the beach, walkable.  You can also grab picnic food at the store attached to Millie’s.  It has more elevated food choices.  You can also buy kegs here.



My issue with this beach is that it is kind of a hike from your parking spot.  Also, the food shack is the only option for food, picture hot dogs and other greasy options.  There are a couple picnic tables near the shack.  Quick and dirty but gets the job done. Beach is fine, more active surf, if that is your thing.


This beach is great. It is kid friendly and has a beach restaurant with great drinks.  The food is not high end by any means but it is fine.  There is a little shop that you can buy last minute beach things and it has a bathroom.  You walk a little bit to set up your stuff but there is a walkway that makes it a little easier.  

Children’s Beach right next to the White Elephant in town. No surf, just sand.  The only thing that weirds me out about this place is that you are in the harbor basically so there is boat oil etc.  It’s like I protect my kid all day from toxins and then throw him in a cesspool. It isn’t awful or obviously gross but it may weird you out too. There is a playground and lawn toys and a snack bar here too.  

Cisco Not for the faint of heart.  As a grown adult I am nervous standing on the sand as the waves look like they could swallow you.  On a foggy day, I find it terrifying.  If you are a surfer, this is where you want to be.  If you are looking to boogie board get ready to fight for your space brah. 


What to do for adults

Cisco Brewery *kid friendly* More than your average Beer Garden

You HAVE to go to Cisco.  This is not a suggestion.  I remember going over a decade ago when the founders were just starting out and it was a couple of guys playing bags in the back with some beers on tap.  It is now a SERIOUS operation but has still maintained a very cool laid back vibe.  They have wine, beer and amazing aptly named cocktails, The Chad anyone? Also food trucks, oysters and live music.  Kids run around and dance and it is just heaven. They also have the most delish Froze (frozen rose).  

Chicken Box, a little out of town

Ok, I am old enough to be almost everyone’s mother in here and it smells like years of spilled beer and the floor is that sticky floor that, well you get the picture but it is SO FUN! We went last year one night after Cru and the band played old school hip hop all night.  We had the time of our lives.  Go and don’t take yourself so seriously.

Cru, In town by the water

Kind of a scene but beautiful interiors and view.  Go for an adult night out either for dinner or drinks. 

Lola, in town

You need to make a reservation at exactly 4pm for a same day res to get a spot.  At 4:05 you may not get one.  They do not give preference to those who are in line vs on phone, which is annoying.  Or you need to know someone with a standing reservation.  The food is good but you really go for the scene.  Open late and very loud, you can try and pop in for a standing room only drink.


What to do for kids

Critter Cruise, from town docks

Loved this! 



Rent a bike with the trailer for them to sit in.  Great bike trails all around the island.  One of my husbands favorite things to do.  If you are staying in town, it is kind of a pain to maneuver so you may need to walk the bike a bit until you get out of the congestion.

Playground at Children’s beach

Whaling Museum, in town- interesting for adults too

Juice Bar (ice cream shop), in town- what is summer without waiting in line for ice cream while smelling the wafting smell of freshly made waffle cones?  Childhood memories made here.

A little bit out of town you can rent paddle boards, for older kids


Where to shop

Serenella (clothing)

Gypsy (clothing)

David Chase (clothing)

CJ Laing (clothing)


Milly & Grace (clothing)

Skinny Dip (clothing)

Nantucket Looms (interiors)

Bodega (interiors)




Love Affair: Maine

That last storm we had in New England was pretty intense.  I love that our neighborhood has a lot of beautiful mature trees but when it snows 2′, it becomes terrifying!  We didn’t leave the house for two days and I spent some time looking through our books while my toddler played.  I have a million books, so it was nice to have a little time to appreciate them.  I was looking through Vogue Living: Houses, Gardens, People and the images of Marina Rust and her life in Maine brought tears to my eyes. I’ve seen them before of course but this summer we rented a house in Maine and I can’t wait to share this special place with my then almost three year old son.

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If you have ever been to Maine, the moment you look at these pictures you just know that these were taken in southern Maine.  That coast line is like no other.  You can smell the slight chill that is always in the air except for maybe a short lived two week break in August.

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Photos: Conde Nast

I have spent time in Maine every single summer since I was eight days old.  Rumor has it I was eating lobster on the deck at Barnacle Billy’s but I doubt it went that far.  I’m sure my subconscious remembers the moment, if you have ever sat on that deck you know what I mean.  The boats, the water, the midday sun, the clanging of the sails, it is heaven and you never want to leave.

Another book that caught my eye earlier this year which I revisited yesterday was Gil Shafer’s, A Place to Call Home.  The New England pool house he designed for a client, is awe inspiring.  I think about it at least once a day.

See what I mean..

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Photography: Billy Cunningham in AD

The attention to detail and the importance placed on feeling is evident in all of his work.

But his house in Maine and the connection he felt when he rented the house one summer and then made it his own, is something I can truly understand.


Photography: Simon Upton

Part of what I love about Maine is that nothing is too precious.  Floors are creaky, antiques are in the house because the previous owner left them or they have been in the family for generations. 

I can remember our simple house in Maine growing up, we had a hand crank coffee grinder in the kitchen attached to the wall, an outdoor shower, and an attic loft with a bunch of twin beds always filled with kids.  It was everything a summer house should be and nothing more.

This summer I look forward to lunch at Barnacle Billy’s and sitting on that deck, walking the marginal way, trolley rides, candy store trips, and long days at the beach making drip castles and eating ice cream. Maybe we will buy a house there before the summer is over.. wouldn’t that be nice!

What are your favorite summer memories?







Shopping Trip: NYC

Now that I have moved to Boston my trips to NYC are quick and jam packed.  I put aside some time between client meetings to check out some of my favorite shops to see what’s new and well, shop!  I thought I would share some of my go tos. These shops follow a somewhat straight line from downtown to uptown.  I did not include shops that have you zig zagging across the city.   

All the shops are linked!





(via flair)

This store is great for accessory shopping, they have curated selection of glass vases, shagreen boxes and various objects.  Definitely one of my favorite places. 


(via flair)

John Derian

This quirky whimsical shop is a must see.  I was last in around Christmas and it was just filled with decorations and one of a kind gifts.  


Roman and Williams Guild

So this is a new one that just recently opened and my first time in was this week.  They have a delish restaurant and bakery, a flower shop and a home shop in the back.  It is worth the trip.  The interiors are absolutely stunning as expected from the Roman and Williams crew.  The wall color and treatment is outta control.


The Webster

So this is also a new one, about four months old.  I read about it in AD on the train ride in and thought I would pop in since I was already planning on going to rwguild.  The interiors are funky and expensive, so is the product, but it is definitely worth the stop.  They had a pop up Chloe display that was stellar.  They occupy the whole building and have jewelry, kids, womens, mens and some home.  The salespeople are super fashion enthusiasts. 

Moma Store (downtown)

This may seem like a silly one but I always pop in.  It is quirky and you can grab some great gifts and filler accessories.  I also pop in because it is across the street from Balthazar, which is my go to for lunch when I am downtown making my way up.

The future perfect

Another great accessory, lighting and furniture shop where you will find things you won’t see anywhere else.  

Santa Maria Novella

This is one of my all time favorite places.  It is beautiful and smells like heaven.  I always buy client gifts here and always pick up their burning papers.  They are the best!  I can never get them online but they always have them in the store, just ask!

Pearl River Mart

Just fun! and kind of an institution. I used to work around the corner when I was at Jed Johnson and it was just a great escape and I would always find something for hostess gifts or a table setting.  Cheap and cheerful!

The antique shops on 10th and 11th by university just under union square are outstanding and have stood the test of time.  Hostler Burrows, Anthony Todd, Maison Gerard, O’Sullivan Antiques 

ABC Home

I used to live a block over from ABC and it is a huge store with a huge selection of everything from jewelry, accessories, clothing, furniture, kids shop, bath, linens, really everything.  Even a restaurant.  A must see.  

Jung Lee

Love this store! They have some unique art, tabletop and accessories.  The interior itself is beautiful as well!


Making your way uptown.


Bergdorfs the women’s store (men’s is across the street, east side)

I am not alone in my love for Bergdorf’s.  It is one of my favorite places.  I love the BG restaurant, I take a seat by the window overlooking central park and it is just the best.  Interiors by Kelly Wearstler with de Gourney wallcovering doesn’t hurt either.  I usually pop into the restaurant first for another bite and a glass of champagne (oops!) and then do a loop around the home floor located on the same level.  They have vintage tabletop, books, accessories, linens, and even a kids section.  Enjoy!

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I mean.. (via link)

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This seat is everything! (via link)


This Upper East Side shop is always changing their inventory and have great accessories.  I just bought these..

and these

Some great finds if you hit it right!

Lexington Gardens

This store is like entering another world.  It has live birds, garden accessories and hostess gifts.


Love this place!! They are constantly updating their inventory and have such fun, unique things!  Kate Schelter has her watercolors hanging on the wall.  Christopher Spitzmiller has some of his plates and garden stools scattered about.  They are also always having events.  Right now they are having a pillow pop up!


If you have time to travel a bit farther east.  You should look at Bunny Williams and Gerald Bland in the Fine arts building as well as Liz O’Brien’s shop on 61st street.  

What are your favorites?  Always looking for new spots!










summer loafers & mules

I am not one to wear flip flops often, especially having lived in NYC for over a decade, you need some barrier between your feet and the street.  You can usually find me in a mule or a loafer during the summer months. Some of my fav picks for this season below.




























pink raffia loafer – stubbs & wootton mules – soludos espadrille mule raffia loafer – tassle mules – denim mules – pale blue driving loafers


images via pinterest and link

The Art of Packing

It has recently come to my attention that for my entire life I have been packing all wrong. My husband and I had our son 10 months ago and for our first road trip with our baby boy Logan I managed to fill, to the brim, an ENTIRE SUBURBAN. I packed everything baby related we owned. My son was three months old at the time and we were traveling to Massachusetts to visit family. I packed- a rock and play, a pack and play, a bassinet, the stroller attachment (just in case!), tons of books, stuffed animals, every item of clothing we had in his size and the next size (just in case!), warm weather clothes, cold weather clothes (I mean it was November, so ambiguous!) , white noise machine- you get the picture. Yet what did I pack for myself? Well, somehow I managed to forget to pack even one single shirt and absolutely zero underwear wound up in my suitcase. Just a few pairs of pants, a sports bra and a cardigan was unearthed in my bag that was otherwise filled with baby items. I ‘borrowed’ my mom’s clothes the whole week and ran to Saks for some new Hanky Panky’s.

Yes, this was an extreme case caused by baby brain maybe but looking back I really never nailed the whole packing thing. I have traveled a lot over the years and always thought about packing in more vague terms. Going to the South of France two years ago pre baby, I kept thinking flowy dresses and big sunglasses. I wound up wearing the same thing pretty much the entire time, a black flowy dress, with black sandals for nights out and a blue and white striped shirt with jeans and mustard Chloe flats for day. Only two outfits worked and we were there for two weeks! I always seemed to do the same thing, just pack a bunch of stuff that I like but when I arrived to my destination I realized almost immediately that half the things I packed didn’t fit properly, I didn’t bring the right shoes or even the right undergarments, I would bring a purse I loved but it went with absolutely nothing, and I never ever bring enough casual shirts.

Most of the items in my suitcase always go unused because while cute they are completely irrelevant. I was always all over the place because I never took the time to really think ahead. I would be buying books at the airport last minute because I forgot my kindle while remembering that the snorkel we have had stored in the entry closet for seven years is still in the entry closet and that we will have to buy yet another one. In most parts of my life I am extremely organized but packing, frustratingly, was never one of them.

Well, since that first road trip with our son, I have vowed to ACE this whole packing thing. I have become increasingly better with each trip as I started to understand the art of packing. We have flown to Palm Beach twice to visit my family and to Boston three more times by car. Having a baby and traveling means you need to think ahead and plan ahead, while staying organized without extraneous things holding you down.

This brings me to our upcoming trip, the one we have been waiting (and training) for. The big event this summer, Nantucket. We leave Saturday and will be staying for two weeks. We will be flying and staying in a home that we have rented. This trip will have a lot of moving parts. We have invited my mom and stepdad, my dad and stepmom, my in laws, and one of our closest friends to stay for varying nights. The second week my husband and I plan to relax on our own (yay!). So we have a baby, we will be having company and therefore entertaining, we will be having cookouts, date nights and beach days, I also scheduled a photoshoot a day when all of the grandparents will be there as our son approaches his first year (Christmas gift, check!).

To start tackling this I began by visualizing the whole trip from the moment I leave the house for the airport and just started jotting down what I need as I walk through the vacation. Just freeform at first. Then I used Emily Ley’s free printables to help organize these notes into actual lists. I use her printables often and find them helpful for my lists and planning for each week, I also have her planner and family binder. When choosing items off the packing list I have found it is easier to pick a theme for each trip. Anyone who knows me knows I looove a theme. So for Nantucket the theme is, obviously, American Summer. All outfits are various tones of red, white and blue with a little bit of beige. If it does not fit into the theme, it is out. This theme trickles over to the whole family, since I pack for them as well (yes, I pack for my husband, it is just easier that way). A theme just makes your mind clear and you can be very cutthroat i.e. a flamingo shirt? NO that is definitely Palm Beach not Nantucket and so on.

Three weeks before I put together and tried on all of my full outfits including bathing suits and cover-ups. Full outfits are to include, a shawl for cool nights, jewelry, undergarments, shoes, purse, hat. I sent out dry cleaning, brought in things for alterations, and did laundry. I also needed to consider the entertaining aspect. So I purchased cutesy summer cocktail napkins from Paper Source and some summer fun treats from Sunnylife, a couple games I came across at ABC home- Ridley’s charades and movie buff, as well as our good old standbys: Blokus, Backgammon and a deck of cards. I also made a family fun playlist for the ipod and brought small portable speakers.

My mom and step dad are kind enough to be driving to Nantucket from Boston via ferry. So we sent them them our luggage last week along with a baby Amazon order with all of Logan’s ‘stay fed and get clean essentials’ (a trick we have learned along the way). We have Petite Travelers in Nantucket baby proofing the house and setting up our baby items that we are renting through them, the crib, changing table, blackout blinds, gates, etc. We also rented beach chairs, beach stroller, beach toys, and a cooler from as well. They will even be stocking the fridge with some first night essentials.

Seems like I have it all under control, right?? Let’s hope so! Now that the packing is taken care of I need to start planning some activities for the family and put together some recipes and a grocery list to tackle the day after we arrive. Since our baby’s bedtime is still super early around 6:30-7 we will be spending many nights at the house grilling. So definitely need to plan ahead for that!

Petite Travelers  •  Emily Ley Printables


The art of packing_2


Some of the items in my suitcase and where to find them

Ridley’s Charades • Sunnylife Playing Cards •  Sunnylife Radio • Simplified Planner • Cocktail Napkins • Backgammon Set • Travel Jewelry Case • Carryall Beach bag • Ralph Lauren American Flag Sweater