June 17, 2018 – Dad Day 2K18 (OOTD #305)

It feels weird publishing this Father’s Day blog two weeks after it’s passed, but you know, it happens.

For Dad Day this year, we went out to Louisville to hang out with my grandmother (my father’s mother), get lunch, and otherwise, just chill. It was a very typically Scanish day, involving moderately-priced sit-down food, my grandmother trying to overfeed us, and sitting around and gossiping about my various cousins whom I don’t really know.

We ended up going to Macaroni Grill, if only because the place my dad originally wanted to go was closed. I was happy enough — Macaroni Grill had a pretty bright yellow wall that worked well for taking pictures with, which the other restaurant didn’t.

Not that taking OOTD pretty photos is the most important factor in deterring where to eat for a Father’s Day lunch! I mean, it was his choice, or, I guess, second-choice. I’m just very glad that his second-choice made for a prettier background that his first would have.

Macaroni Grill was my favorite restaurant as a kid, but to be honest, it really didn’t live up to my childhood memories. For one, my favorite old dish, the Pasta Milano, is no longer there, which basically means that Macaroni Grill is dead to me now. There are just better pasta restaurants in the world, you know?

I debated whether or not I should conclude this blog with a “my dad is great!” Father’s Day kind of spiel, but it seems weird to do so since Father’s Day was so long ago. My dad is great though, so I guess the point still stands. And if you’re reading this Dad, hi! I hope you’re doing a good job of keeping my plants alive while I’m gone.

That’s about it for today. Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, BloglovinTwitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Sweater: Altar’d State

Top: Express (thrifted)

Shorts: Francesca’s

Dad: South Jersey

June 2, 2018 – Closure (OOTD #296)

This is it — two years after I wrote my very first blog ever on a real estate team’s website about the Red River Gorge area in Kentucky, I finally get to visit it.

Summer, 2016. 17-year old Meilin was beginning her second job (the first one being a grocery bagger at Kroger when I was 16) at a real estate company as their blogger. The idea was that by writing blogs about local events in Central Kentucky, I could draw more traffic to the site, and by extension, more clients to the realtors.

On my first day, my boss suggested I try a blog about the Red River Gorge and Natural Bridge national forest area in Kentucky. I didn’t really know much about the area, but I did some research (thank you, TripAdvisor) and came up with the “Top 5 Things To Do In Red River Gorge In June.” It wasn’t revolutionary, but it was well(ish) written, and was my first experience realizing that I liked blogging.

I’d link to it, but sadly, since I left, most of my old blogs were purged from the website. It’s okay, you’re not missing much.

Despite writing my first blog over Red River Gorge, at the time of writing it, I had no memory of ever being there. I knew it existed, and I knew I had gone before as a little kid, but that was the extent of my knowledge. Any memories I had of actually being at the Gorge were hazy and faded. After completing the blog though, I decided to put it on my list of things to do while in Kentucky — a list that’s admittedly not super long.

Anyway, I ended up going to the Gorge hiking trails last summer with my dad, but on our trip, we never made it to Natural Bridge, which is arguably the main attraction to the whole national forest area.

Finally though, two years later, I got to see it with Amanda! Or at least, got to see it as an adult who could actually remember the experience instead of a child who was bitter that her parents were forcing her to go out and hike instead of sitting in the car and play video games, which is pretty much what happened the last time I was at Natural Bridge.

And now that I have my closure, consider this blog closed. Bye!

That’s about it for today. Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, BloglovinTwitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Top: ASOS

Shorts: Francesca’s

March 19, 2018 – It’s Still Not Spring (OOTD #249)

I’m still operating here until the assumption that if I dress like it’s spring, eventually it’ll come.

You can’t even tell me my logic is wrong, here. Eventually, spring will come. Will my fashion cause it to arrive any sooner? Maybe not, but it’ll come all the same, and it’ll be exciting.

I’m particularly interested to see what campus will be like with all of the flowers in bloom. I haven’t been on Notre Dame’s campus in the springtime since I first visited way back in my junior year of high school, and from what I remember, it’s very pretty. I think that’s part of the reason why I came here.

Another reason why I came was because I thought the Catholic identity was really cool — even though I’m not Catholic myself. As an outsider, I always thought the various prayers and chants were cool in a mystical, kind of creepy way, but now that I’m used to them, the appeal is wearing off.

I’m particularly tired of these meatless Fridays and the fasting leading up to Easter. While I appreciate the meaning behind it and the dedication involved, I like meat (and just like, food in general) too much to really care to participate in it myself. That’s made particularly difficult when the dining halls are barely open and when they are, they serve bread and soup.

Basically, I’m just really excited for Easter and the end of Lenten season. Catch me stuffing myself with food and chocolate eggs.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Blouse: Francesca’s

Pants: thrifted (they’re actually old riding pants! Fun fact)

January 5, 2018 – Welcome To The Matrix (OOTD #194)

Red pill or blue pill?

I actually didn’t much like the Matrix films; the first one was alright, had some good action scenes, but the ones afterwards were so bloated and wordy that I think I fell asleep halfway through the second one and I skipped the last one. To be honest, I can’t actually remember which pill was the one you’re supposed to take to go back to normal life and which one takes you to the Matrix – talk about a fake fan.

If nothing else, the Matrix series certainly had style though, in a leather duster coat and sunglasses kind of way. And I feel like this outfit is definitely something of a Matrix-y style – for good or for ill.

For good in the sense that it has that post-apocoyptic cyberpunk feel, which was honestly probably the best part of the Matrix films, and for ill in the sense that I feel like my haircut plus this jacket plus the shades gives off a 90s vibe.

Is it retro or just dated? Honestly, I’m not sure.

At any rate, it is all black, and I do love an all-black outfit. I think I’m trying to make up for having worn so many colorful outfits during Christmastime; I can only do so much color during the cold months at once, you know? I’ll bring out my bright colors again come spring.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Jacket: thrifted

Sweater: Francesca’s

November 14, 2017 – Cherry Blossoms (OOTD #159)

Happy 8PM on a Sunday night, I’m presently standing in the basement of a building I didn’t know existed, typing this blog on my phone because I forgot to do it earlier, and waiting in line for food.

It’s pretty nice, actually – my residence hall has a “Friendsgiving” event, where all the residents, freshmen through seniors, come together with dishes they’ve prepared to celebrate Thanksgiving.

What’s not as nice is that, as a freshman, I get last pick of the food.

I mean, I can’t really complain, because I know I’ll eventually be a senior and get first pick, but I’m pretty hungry and lines are not the friend of a hungry Meilin. I hope there’s still plenty of food left by the time I make it up there – there’s a shrimp dish that looks particularly good, and I’d be a little more than hurt if I didn’t at least get to taste some of it.

Since coming to college, I’ve gotten really spoiled with being able to eat pretty much whenever I want to without waiting, assuming I go to the dining hall at a decent time (there are certain periods that are busy where’s you do have to wait in lines). The whole “waiting for food to cook” notion isn’t something I’ve come across for a while.

Regardless of how long into the afternoon I’ll have to wait before dinner is served, I’m still very excited for Thanksgiving! The food they’ve got for us for Howard Friendsgiving looks good, but it’s nothing compared to my mother’s cooking.

For that matter, it’s nothing compared to my or my grandmother’s cooking, as we both contribute pretty fairly to the Thanksgiving meal. My dad on the other hand…he does a nice job setting the table and turning on the grill.

September 12, 2017 – False Step (OOTD #110)

You know, looking back at these photos, I’m not sure what I think of the shoes with the top.

Maybe it’s the pictures. I swear, in person, the yellow of the boots went much better with the yellow in the shirt. Or at least, I thought it did. Maybe I just walked around all day looking awkward and mismatched. I’m sure everyone stared and thought I was a freak – in fact, I should probably just drop out of school now, since I don’t see any way I could possibly recover from this terrible faux pas.

Luckily, most of my photos from Tuesday didn’t show my feet, so we don’t have to worry about that too much.

Anyway, things here in South Bend have slowly been beginning to feel more and more like autumn – and I’m very happy about that. I passed a batch of trees with a few orange leaves on them today, and I was so excited I had to post it to my Snapchat story. That’s real test of a millennial’s enthusiasm – did it make into onto their story?

I hope there’s somewhere on campus or nearby that I can get a pumpkin. I don’t think autumn exists without pumpkins, and I fully intend to decorate my dorm with as many of them as I can fit. I don’t even feel the need to carve them (here at Notre Dame, at least – I’ll definitely carve one when I go home to Kentucky for fall break); I just like their presence. They’re like the big round orange patron saints of the October-November season.

My birthday actually falls in the fall (ba-dum tshhh), so I have a particular affinity for the season. My favorite season, though, is definitely winter – but maybe that’s just because I’m used to mild Kentucky winters. Will I still enjoy winter after I’ve experienced my first one in South Bend, which ranks among the snowiest towns in the US?

I feel like I will, but maybe I’m being overly optimistic. I hear that in the parts of the Midwest, like Chicago, the snow never melts in the winter – it just gets dirty and turns to slush and then freezes into a grey ice that is then covered by a new layer of snow.

But personally, I feel like that’s preferable to the general lack of snow that Kentucky has. I’ve never even experienced a white Christmas before – what a depraved, unfortunate creature I must be.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life here at Notre Dame. Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Sweater-jacket thingFrancesca’s

Top: H&M

Choker: Francesca’s

July 3, 2017 – [insert all-black attire proverb here] (OOTD #57)

All black everything? Black like my soul? There are so many choices – all so cliché, yet all so relatable.

Black is such a comfortable, easy-to-wear color; I almost have to stop myself from wearing it so often for fear of coming off as goth. Nothing wrong with goth, of course – but as I’ve said before, I don’t like to pigeon-hole myself into a single style.


But yeah, if I were to choose a style to go with 100% of the time, goth might be one of them. My Chemical Romance was a favorite band of mine my sophomore year. Still is a favorite band of mine, actually…


Anyway, today’s outfit – I like to think of it as pseudo-nu-goth, not unlike my “not quite” pastel grunge look from a month ago. I absolutely adore the look of a true nu-goth – the fishnet stockings, layered chokers, elegant but intimidating makeup, and of course, black everything – but the fact of the matter is, I simply don’t have the pieces to do a full Pinterest-worthy nu-goth outfit. So in the absence of the proper pieces, I like to innovate. I’ve got a black circle skirt on here – simple enough – and a black sweater with some interesting cutouts at the shoulder and detailing on the neckline. Throw in a layered choker, and I’ve got something that, while not perfect, achieves the look I want without me having to spend a fortune on pieces I can’t wear in other outfits.


Sadly though, my fabulous pseudo-nu-goth outfit was seen by very few today. I spent most of  my time at home, as my biggest concern today was packing – I haven’t done anything yet, and I leave for London tomorrow. Ah well, I packed for New York the night before – I can pack for London the same way!


Tomorrow I’m headed off to London! Sorry, I just had to repeat that to myself because I can scarcely believe it. I’m so excited, yet also a bit stressed. I’ve only flown by myself once before, and it wasn’t international. I actually have flown internationally before, but it was years ago, when I visited China in third grade. And I had my parents with me that time to tell me what to do.

I’ll leave you with this charming photo of my room, mid-packing session. It looks like a hurricane hit it, and yet, it’s just me. It’s kind of bad, but a large part of packing is putting together and laying out the outfits, and for me, that’s a very messy process.


That’s it for today! I’ll see you in the next one. Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Sweater: Francesca’s

Skirt: Forever21

June 20, 2017 – All The Trends! (OOTD #48)

I like to think of myself as someone who doesn’t feel the need to follow trends.

 

Like I said, like to think of myself – I’m not necessarily always that way. Case in point – today’s outfit, which covers three trends all in one – an off-the-shoulder top, loose shorts, and a choker. Clearly, I belong in an issue of Seventeen, or perhaps an ad for Forever21.

 

(Actually, unlike a lot of days, today’s outfit features nothing from Forever21!)

 

There’s really nothing wrong with being trendy: it’s just that following trends means there’s less room for original thought and creativity. And that’s something I value quite a lot in fashion – I would much rather wear something that makes people go “that’s different” than “that’s boring.”

 

But being original takes effort, and being trendy does not (though it does take a lot more money…), and today, I was rather lacking in the effort department. I woke up a bit late, and I had to rush to get ready for a lunch date with a friend, so trendy it was.

 

One of the nice things about trends is that they come in all varieties, and these varieties are very easily mixed and matched. Today, for example, I mixed the off-the-shoulder trend with the loose, boho-ish shorts trend with the choker trend. It made for a very simple, stylish outfit that required very little thought on my part and still looked very good in the end. That is something you risk when going with more unusual outfits – you may put all this thought and effort into creating interesting layers or silhouettes, and you can still just wind up looking weird.

 

Also, about today’s lunch date – my friend and I used it to discuss things we wanted to do in London, when we visit in early July. So I figured I would ask you guys, anyone who’s visited London or lives there or just feels like offering an opinion, what should we make sure we do while we’re there? We don’t necessarily feel the need to do the super-touristy things and would actually really love to go for something a little more off the beaten path, so if you have any suggestions, please leave a comment below!

That’s it for today! I’ll see you in the next one. Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com

Shirt: Hollister

Pants: Francesca’s

Band-aid with little fish on it: UK Hospital

June 13, 2017 – Is This a Sweater, a Jacket, or a Blouse? (OOTD #42)

No, really – I mean that question.

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I got this lovely jacket/blouse/sweater thing at Francesca’s the other day, but I really have no idea what it is. It’s open in the front, like a sweater or jacket, with a little tie to close it, but the fabric is a sheer cotton like a blouse.

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That makes wearing it an interesting experience, because when I was picking out what to wear this morning, I really wasn’t sure how to style it. Obviously, I knew I had to wear something underneath for modesty, but otherwise, it was open to interpretation. That actually made for a rather fun experience creating my outfit because I wasn’t bound by what the “proper” thing to wear was – I could be more creative.

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So in the end, I opted for a pale pink top for under my sweater/jacket/blouse thing that pulled from the colors from some of the colorful embroidery, and then same plain black leggings on bottom since I was working today.  A rather simple ensemble, I’ll admit, but one made all the more interesting because of the unusual jacket/sweater/blouse element.

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I don’t know, what do you think? It’s definitely different outfit; I love pieces that challenge me to think of new and interesting ways to wear my clothes. I think next time I wear this particular piece, I’ll want to wear it in a completely different way, because that’s what makes fashion fun to me – the ability to change up your look every day. IMG_1507

Also, you might’ve noticed – I’m wearing my aviators today instead of my usual Ray Bans. I took the dog for a walk last night, and for the life of me, I haven’t been able to find them since. Ah well, I know they’re in the house somewhere – I’ll find them eventually.

That’s it for today! I’ll see you in the next one. Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com

Blouse/sweater/jacket thing: Francesca’s

Shirt: Forever21

Boots: Steve Madden

Sunglasses: Fossil

June 5, 2017 – Bardstown in Black (OOTD #36)

Kentucky’s a pretty cool state.

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I do still find it hard to consider myself a true Kentuckian, though I’ve spent almost all of my life here – all 18 years of it, actually, excluding the 8 months that I spent as a baby in China. My father’s a true New Jersey guy and my mother’s from Chicago, so none of us have ever truly fit in to the southern lifestyle. Still, while Kentucky’s a little on the boring side, it has its merits. It’s always been my dream to move to a big city like New York, but I do rather like the small town feel that Kentucky’s got. 

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While I live in one of Kentucky’s biggest cities (though I usually think of it as more of a really large college town rather than the small city it touts itself as), it is pretty cool to go in to visit one of small country towns. Today, my family and I headed into Bardstown, KY, at the request of my visiting uncle and cousin from New Jersey. They’re both super into vintage stuff, so we figured this was a pretty nice place to get lunch and do some antique shopping.

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And it really was. We had lunch at this really cute burger place, and spend the rest of the afternoon wandering in and out of the little boutiques and consignment shops that lined Bardstown’s downtown Main St. area. I didn’t find anything I really wanted (except for a cute little Burberry sweater in a second-hand shop for $100; sadly, it had a tear that wasn’t going to be easy to fix), but I think my uncle and cousin enjoyed themselves.

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Today’s outfit was actually inspired by my uncle’s style, funnily enough. I wish I had some pictures of him – he’s a really interesting dude. He’s into hot rods, skeletons, local bands, and likes to wear workers’ shirts with random people’s names on it.  Though I don’t have any shirts that label me as a Jerry or an Andres, I do have these fun hair clips that look like skeleton hands. I paired them with a black sweater with detailing on the neckline, maroon pants with detailing down the legs, and, for extra detail, I added a  black velvet choker.

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(Look, writing is hard sometimes, especially trying to avoid sounding repetitive)

And apparently, my uncle liked it because he said I looked cool, in particular the skeleton hair clips.

Sweater: Francesca’s

Pants: Ann Taylor LOFT

Shoes: Converse

That’s it for today! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.comFullSizeRender 46FullSizeRender 44FullSizeRender 40FullSizeRender 36.jpgFullSizeRender 41.jpg