October 12, 2018 – I’m Coming Home (OOTD #390)

I love the last day of school before I get to head home.

I don’t know, there’s just something exciting about the process of getting myself from one place to another — I like transportation, and the knowledge that I’m an independent adult now who can travel by herself.

I’m not so much a fan of travel when I’m leaving home, but going home? I don’t know if there’s a better feeling in the world.

So after my long Wednesday, October 10, I only had to make it through October 11 and then October 12 until the first half of Fall Semester 2018 was finally over. My Thursday-Friday schedule is usually a little calmer than my Monday-Tuesday-Wednesday schedule, so it wasn’t so bad surviving through the end of the week.

By 12:30 on Friday afternoon, I was home free. All that was left to do was pack my bags, get in the car, and drift off into oblivion until I made it to the airport.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t so simple as that. I found a girl who was driving to Midway Airport at 4:30 in the afternoon, which should have given me plenty of time to get from Notre Dame to Chicago in time for my flight. What we didn’t account for, though, was that traffic would be bad with all of the students trying to leave at once (plus tourists coming in for a home game). By the time we actually left campus, it was more like 5:30.

Furthermore, we didn’t account for how difficult it would be to find parking once we got to the airport. It wasn’t my car, so it wasn’t really my problem to navigate, but the girl who drove and her friend in the passenger seat sure had a hard time finding where their parking reservation was. It also ended up costing them like $80 to park for the week. Poor kids.

They were also running super late for their flight. It departed at 8:00pm, and we didn’t even make it to the parking lot until 7:30. Thankfully, we had the world’s coolest airport shuttle driver ever. This man drove over a line of cones and sped the whole way to get them to their terminal on time.

Me, though? I still had plenty of time. My flight didn’t leave until 9:30 in the evening, so I was still there an hour and a half early. It wasn’t exactly the most relaxing trip to the airport ever, but I still made it on time.

Even with all of the setbacks, I can’t say I disliked my travel home. It was still travel home, and the destination was what was important. And in the end, I made it home.

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 home 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!

Jumpsuit: Urban Outfitters

Top: Free People

September 13, 2018 – The Secret Garden (OOTD #374)

It still counts as secret if most people knew it existed, but I didn’t know about it for a whole year, right?

This little spot (which I’ve actually included in a blog before!) is the courtyard garden in the Hayes-Healey building. It’s really cute — and it’s only accessible from within the building, which adds to the mysterious quality. Seriously, like I said, I didn’t even know it existed for 99% of my freshman year. I’d heard whispers of a garden in the mathematics building, but since I had no math classes (shout-out to my AP Calculus teachers in high school, who allowed me to get a 5 and not take any math in college), I never had a reason to go and look.

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the ivy leagues are overrated

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Finally, at the end of my freshman year, some friends and I were trying to get some cute group pictures before summer break, and someone suggested the Hayes-Healey garden. It was actually all locked up when we tried to go, but we ended up getting some pictures with the giant globe in the building — another feature I never knew Notre Dame had.

I like how Notre Dame — a school that is notably not a part of the Ivy Leagues — has a hidden ivy garden. As the guy from the Incredibles would say, “Coincidence? I think not!”

It’s actually probably a total coincidence. The Ivy Leagues are overrated anyway — it’s not like Columbia was my dream or anything…

I’m at a total loss for how to end this blog today, so I Googled a joke for you — “How many Harvard students does it take to change a lightbulb?”

“One. He holds the lightbulb still, and the whole world revolves around him.”

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 home 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: Free People

Jacket: Forever21

Skirt: J. Crew (thrifted)

September 6, 2018 – Lucky the Leprechaun (OOTD #367)

This just in: I’m going to be Notre Dame’s first female and first Asian leprechaun!

Ok, maybe not — but I kind of look like I could be here, no? All day I felt like I should’ve been step dancing and leading people on quests for pots of gold.

Honestly, I don’t know why it took me so long to think to pair this jacket and these pants. Lord knows I’ve had them both for long enough. I think I was concerned that they’d be too matchy-matchy, but as it turns out, they’re just the right amount of matching.

All day, when I didn’t feel like a leprechaun, I felt like some powerful boss lady-type character. Which ideally, I would feel like all the time, every day, but…you know. I’ll take what I can get.

If you noticed, these pictures were taken back in Como, a location I’ve often lauded for its beautiful afternoon lighting in the stairwell. It’s not a particularly dynamic background, but it is worth it every once in a while for the lighting. As long as I can dodge the afternoon traffic of students using the stairs to get to class, that is. There’s nothing worse than standing there, taking pictures of yourself in a classroom building just to have a student walk by trying to get to class. Like, who do they think they are, walking around like they have any right to go to class when an artist is at work?

It’s only two weeks now until fall break, which means it’s only two weeks until I’m halfway through my first semester of sophomore year. Not to be cliché, but I feel like it just started. I’ve been ridiculously busy, so the time seems to go too quickly. Maybe it’s the leprechaun magic.

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 home 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!

Jacket: Forever21

Top: Free People

Pants: Banana Republic

August 11, 2018 – Danville Days (OOTD #343)

Actually, I guess it was more of a Danville night — I was only around town for dinner.

For those of you who don’t know, Danville’s a small-ish town in Central Kentucky, about an hour south from Lexington, my home. I’ve been a few times, and every time I go, I’m thoroughly impressed by how quiet it is. Take “quiet” with whatever connotation you’d personally like to assign to it: for me though, I find it a bit boring.

In fairness, I went on a Saturday night, and Danville’s not really a Saturday night kind of a place — maybe more of a Sunday morning place, after everyone’s gone to church. We walked around around 7pm, and it was pretty much dead downtown. Perhaps if I’d been there at 11am the next morning, I would have actually gotten to see the little bakeries and coffee shops in operation.

I did get to go into a Goodwill, though, which was a good idea in that I found a cute jacket and a sweater. It’s not really jacket/sweater season but…that never stopped me.

I had dinner with my friend, Amanda’s family, and after that, we drove back to Lexington. On the way back though, we made a brief stop at a little church we saw on the roadside.

There really wasn’t a good reason why we decided to stop at the church: we just thought it looked cute. I know, a little one-room white church in an empty field is hardly a rare sight in Kentucky, but I feel like I never actually stop and look at them, for as many as I pass on the road. It was locked up (and possibly abandoned? Looked pretty dusty in there), but I still got a nice photo or two of it with the sunset in the background. Just feature my work on my own inspirational “Old Kentucky Home” poster, already.

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 home in Kentucky. 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: Free People

Jeans: American Eagle (thrifted)

June 24, 2018 – Writer’s Block (OOTD #311)

I’ve been sitting here for like, a half an hour trying to think of a good way to start this blog, but I’ve got nothing.

Usually, I find writing these blogs to be fairly easy — I begin with some sort of observation about my outfit, some pun that plays into the blog’s title, or a continuation of a thought begun in a previous blog. Sometimes, I’ll even just start into a discussion of what happened that day, especially if it was an exciting day with events worth discussing.

This day, however, had no particularly exciting events (Buying some new shoes! Running errands! Eating dinner!), and no easy puns to make.

As a kid in elementary school, we used to have to keep these writing journals. They were meant to help us practice our writing skills — you know, composition, grammar, etc. — and we were supposed to start each day when we arrived in the classroom by writing a paragraph or two. Sometimes, there was a prompt, but more often, you were expected to come up with something to write about on your own.

Yo have no idea how many of those journal entires for me began with something along the lines of “I don’t know what to write about.”

Back then, I used to think I was so clever by responding to the challenge of writing every day with such a rebellious statement — here my teacher was telling me to write, and my answer was that I had nothing to say. It was kind of meta, if you will.

At the same time though, it was kind of lazy. There’s only so much thought vomit about writer’s block that can be amusing before it just gets obnoxious and pretentious.

As you’ve probably noticed here though, that’s what I’m doing now! The 2018 Grown-Up Meilin version of those journal entries I made when I was a kid. I guess I’m just as obnoxious and pretentious as I was back then.

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: Free People

Skirt: Vintage (thrifted)

April 27, 2018 – Equestrian Kentuckian (OOTD #273)

For a person who hasn’t seen a horse in months and who won’t even be in Kentucky in time for the Derby, I sure look like I’m going to go out and work with horses in this outfit.

Horses were always something I took for granted for years — they’re all over Kentucky, probably one of the most common sights in the entire state. Here, at Notre Dame, though the most common sights are white boys in Vineyard Vines in the business school building and giant squirrels. There are no horses here, since the Four Horsemen don’t count.

Not seeing horses everywhere was pretty easy to get used to though, considering I’ve never really been a horse person and can only kind-of sort-of ride. I can do trail rides, but so can pretty much anyone with a little training.

I’m a sad excuse for a Kentuckian.

I do like to pretend I’m an equestrian-minded Kentuckian girl, at least, through my fashion choices. Have these riding boots ever once been used for riding? Nope. But they look like they might, and that’s what counts for me.

Meanwhile, I still haven’t found my missing black shoes , which is absolutely baffling to me, since there’s really no where they should be other than my dorm room. And yet I’ve searched around my dorm room repeatedly to no avail — it seems like, unless they pop up sometime in the next few days, I shall be going home without them. Sad lad. That would mean that I’ve gone through two pairs of black booties during my year here at school, which, while kind of understandable given the fact that they’re my go-to shoes for everyday wear, is still kind of dumb.

Speaking of dumb  — that’s what I am for not doing any work so far today, and for spending hours looking at plant blogs instead of anything productive. Guess I should start on my history paper now that it’s 11pm and I need to be up at 6 tomorrow.

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!

Jacket: Evan Picone (thrifted)

Turtleneck: Free People

Jeans: Hollister (a new, better-fitting pair of white jeans than my old Abercrombie ones!)

April 9, 2018 – Low-Key Angst (OOTD #262)

The first time I wore this sweater…jacket thing, a friend of mine told me I looked like “low-key angst.”

For some reason, I remember thinking that was a major compliment. I didn’t really like to wear my angsty teenager status on my sleeve in high school, since there were already so many edgy teens with badly dyed hair running all over the place so the fact that someone could tell I was trying to be little more “hardcore” but in a subtle way was flattering.

I still think of this as my low-key angst sweater-thing. Partially, because I don’t know what else to call it — is it a sweater? Is it a jacket? A shirt? In the absence of a real name, I’ve just gone with calling it the piece that makes me look like a “low-key angsty” teenager.

I don’t have much longer to be an angsty teen though, do I? In a few months, I’ll be 20, and I can’t blame my problems on hormones anymore. What are adults even supposed to blame their woes on anyway? The government?

In other news, I’m still on the hunt for a summer job. I’ve had a couple of possibilities come up, but for one reason or another, nothing’s really worked out, unfortunately. McDonald’s is looking more and more inviting as the days go by. Moschino made fast food look very chic in their iconic Fall 2014 RTW collection — too bad you can’t actually afford Moschino when you’re working a minimum wage fast food job.

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!

Jacket sweater shirt thing: Free People

Jeans: Hollister

April 6, 2018 – Winter Wrap Up (OOTD #260)

If you’d like to hear the delightful My Little Pony song that inspired the title of this blog, have a look here.

For a 19 year-old adult, I probably care more for cartoons than I should, but I have to admit, my childhood obsessions like My Little Pony, the Disney Princess films, and the Powerpuff Girls still hold up pretty well today. They’re good to put on while I’m on the elliptical in the morning because they’re so sweet and innocent — the perfect way to clear my head from anything that’s stressing me out.

But anyway, just like the ponies of the Winter Wrap Up song, it looks like spring is finally getting ready to show itself here in South Bend. I almost wondered if it would never come, what with some of the snow showers we continued to get even into early and mid-April, but once we get through these next few days of chilly rain, it looks like the warmer weather is finally here to stay. At least, that’s what the Weather Channel app says for now.

Fingers crossed it stays that way!

I got some cute pieces over spring break that I’ve been excited to finally show off, so maybe, with the spring weather due to come soon, I’ll be motivated enough to wear them.

I don’t know if this is a common thing, but do you ever feel like you have to wait for a special occasion to wear new clothes? Like, even if you didn’t buy them for a special cause, and even if they’re seasonable for the current weather, it seems like new clothes deserve a special unveiling event. Maybe I just like my clothes too much.

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!

Jacket: H&M

Top: Free People

Pants: The LOFT

March 22, 2018 – Untitled (OOTD #252)

I allllllllmost didn’t post this outfit as a blog.

I only have four photos, and one isn’t even very good, so it almost didn’t really feel worth it to post it as a full blog, you know?

I decided to go for it anyway though, because I really like this jacket. It reminds me of the most expensive item in my wardrobe, a similarly architectural jacket, except that I doubt this one is worth hundreds of dollars. Interestingly, though, I bought it at the same thrift shop from back home as I bought the super expensive one — coincidence?

I wore this jacket specifically for an interview I had at 9AM, and, considering I was accepted into the program I was interviewing for, I guess it worked out! While it’s not a paid job (that I’m still searching for), it is a almost-entirely grant-funded trip to Nepal to observe and aid in a research project, so I’m super excited.

You can bet that I’ll be posting a lot about my adventures in Nepal (assuming I have time), so stay tuned for that. Maybe I’ll actually be able to keep up with a regular schedule, unlike what happened to me in London, where one week in, I stopped posting at all.

Speaking of London, can you believe it’s been almost one whole year since I started L’ensemble du jour? I need to check my stats for the exact date, but I’m pretty sure I began this whole project sometime in mid-to-late April of 2017. I should do something special for the one year-anniversary. Any ideas? Leave me a comment below!

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!

Jacket: thrifted

Shirt: Free People

Pants: The LOFT

February 20, 2018 – Low Light (OOTD #229)

I made this a caption for one of my posts on Instagram recently, but I’ll say it again – I think stairwells may just bit the new doorways.

A little context – I’ve said, many, many times on this blog that doorways are pretty much the only structures I get in the backgrounds of my fashion photography. For one, the shape of a door usually just makes for a very nice way to frame the subject in general (that subject being me). Additionally, Notre Dame just has a lot of really pretty doors throughout campus (there are some exceptions – I think Riley’s doorway and LaFun’s doorway are pretty average), and I like to show them off. Maybe one of these days I’lll to a list of the top 10 best doorways at Notre Dame.

Anyway, I’ve been getting tired of constantly standing in front of doors, so I’ve been trying to shake it up a little by exploring the various buildings of ND when they empty out at night for good photography locations. Thankfully, now that I’ve discovered the remote camera feature that allows me to balance my phone somewhere but then actually take the photo on my watch, it’s been easier for me to get pictures done since I don’t have to rely on having someone to be my photographer.

As you’ll see here, when I posed in a stairwell in the campus ministry building, stairwells can make for good substitutes for doors, especially if that stairwell has a window that will let some natural light in.

Unfortunately, when tried to replicate that here in these photos in a different set of stairs in a different building, I didn’t have quite as much luck, as it was too dark out to get much natural light. Instead, I got a (kind of dingy) overhead light.

While I wouldn’t say these shots are particularly glamorous, they are moody, and there are a few in here that, when I put them on the B/W filter, give off some film noir detective vibes.

Will I be returning to this set of stairs for anymore photos? Probably not, especially if it’s dark out. Like I said, I do like some of the things I got here though, so it was still worth it to me.

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!

Jacket: Ralph Lauren

Top: Free People