August 23, 2018 – The Bend of the South (OOTD #355)

Look at me, a proper Southern Bender!

Yeah, not really. I don’t even know what the proper term is for the people of South Bend; I think the Notre Dame students call them “townies” but I don’t know what the actual South Bend residents think of that. I interact with few South Bend residents on campus, so I’m really not sure of their take on the “townie” rhetoric.

Regardless, you’ll be proud to hear — I made it back off campus again! A friend and I took an Uber to go to a Vietnamese market downtown. She specifically wanted some groceries, and I thought I’d go along just to walk around and see something other than the golden-tan brick of campus for a while.

It was a welcome breath of fresh air. Being on campus all the time, I live in the same space as I work, which means that I feel compelled, no matter what time of day it is, to keep working. There’s no physical divide between “home” and “school” — they’re the same. In other words, I’m basically at school, doing school things, 24/7. The brief moments when I can escape school and do something that’s not only distinct from school in practice, but also spatially separate from school, are my favorite.

Since we were downtown, my friend and I decided to walk around a little and take some pictures. She’s also pretty into maintaining an aesthetically pleasing Instagram feed, so we work well together when we take pictures. It helps as well that we’re similar in height and body type, so I don’t have to worry about her looming over me and taking a dreaded high-angle shot that makes me look even shorter than I already am.

As it turns out, South Bend has some cool locations for photos. It’s not as well-kept as Notre Dame’s buildings (excluding a few older ones, like Riley, that are just falling apart), but it’s a lot more diverse and interesting. I guess with economic depression, comes a lot of dilapidated buildings that fit an urban aesthetic well. Hooray for that?

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!

Top: Vintage (thrifted)

Skirt: Somewhere in Nepal

August 16, 2018 – Stereotypical College Partygoer (OOTD #348)

Welp, I caved and I did it: I bought a denim skirt.

While I don’t know if I can link you to a specific example, I know I have written about my disdain for the denim skirt trend before. It’s nothing against the denim skirt as a concept — in fact, I love the look of a denim miniskirt, and the first few times I saw someone wear one last year when the trend had just picked up steam, I was a huge fan. But that’s the problem — the trend picked up steam, and a lot of it. Too much of it.

It could also be the fact that I live on a college campus, and I’m surrounded by a bunch of 20-somehting females who want something cute (read: sexy) but simple to wear when they’re going out to parties. And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that; people can do what they want while wearing what they want. I just get tired of seeing the same outfits over and over again.

Here’s how to make an outfit for going out in if you’re a Notre Dame girl: combine a denim skirt, an off-the-shoulder top (a tube top if you’re feeling spicy), a lot of highlighter, and mix with a few Mike’s Hard Lemonades. As a standalone concept, that’s not bad — but every single ND girl seems to wear a similar thing every Friday/Saturday night.

Anyway, I finally caved though and bought myself a denim skirt. While I kind-of resent its overuse as a party staple, like I said, I do like it as a standalone piece. I found it at a local Salvation Army, and for the price, I couldn’t resist. My hope is that I’ll be able to wear it in a more creative way than just with an Urban Outfitters tube top…but we’ll see. No promises — I am a Notre Dame girl after all, and the peer pressure may be too much to resist.

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!

Skirt: Thrifted

Top: H&M

Jacket: Hollister (fun fact: I got this on Black Friday all the way back when I was in middle school, and it still fits!)

August 14, 2018 – Back in the Bend (OOTD #346)

It’s as the title says: I’m back in South Bend!

Being honest, I don’t know if I’d really say I’ve missed it. The Notre Dame-South Bend relationship has probably been one of my least favorite things about studying at Notre Dame, and as much as I love Notre Dame, that’s one complaint I really can’t ignore.

Notre Dame is very much isolated from the South Bend community, and South Bend, honestly, feels rather isolated from the rest of the world. South Bend’s one of those Rust Belt cities that peaked about 50 years ago and has been on a decline ever since, and while you can definitely see some fruits of the attempts to revitalize it, it’s going to be quite a long time until it’s back to its former glory — if it ever gets there.

Notre Dame, on the other hand, is quite the opposite — modern, growing, and, well, very wealthy. The disconnect between the social conditions at ND and in South Bend make it such that I feel like the students have a hard time comprehending the struggles of  the people of South Bend, and the people of South Bend tend to see Notre Dame students as nothing but rich white kids who will leave in four years having done little to contribute to the local community. In fact, Notre Dame, being such a large campus, technically has its own postal code separate from South Bend — which I believe perfectly sums up the dynamic between Notre Dame and South Bend.

Anyway, the Notre Dame-South Bend relationship aside, I have missed a lot of other things about being on campus — my friends, the Starbucks in LaFun, the creepy classrooms of the Riley art building at night. I’m not sure how I feel about classes and the schoolwork bit yet, though. I’m not sure I’m ready to go back to homework.

But I have a few days before I have to start worrying about that, so the next week I can concern myself with getting settled and moved in. And part of that “getting settled” experience, I have decided, should be exploring South Bend a bit — because I don’t want to be one of those Notre Dame kids who leaves in four years with their stupidly expensive diploma without acknowledging the community outside of the Notre Dame bubble.

So after arriving in South Bend in the afternoon, my parents and I did some shopping, got dinner, and walked around the path next to the St. Joseph River. It’s not much, but it’s still more than I did for most of my whole freshman year in South Bend. It’s a start.

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!

Top: A boutique in Louisville

Shorts:  Francesca’s