Monthly Archives: March 2017

my 20s

book club: winter reads

March 31, 2017

winter is over and so is my worst ever reading record. between moving back to st. louis, getting settled in my new job and falling into bed every night, i read an all time low of two books. buuuuuut in my defense, i also crawled through one of them because it was so good and required being reread over and over.

but anywho, spring will be better. so without further ado…my winter reads!

“rising strong” by brene brown : this book. oooohhhh this book will rock you and make you really think about what it means to rise after falling. but also what it means to dare enough to fall. brene is one of my all time favorite authors. she has a way of combining her personal stories, research and a conversational tone that makes you really understand, reread every page and feel an urge to change. this book is an anthem to everyone who is showing up vulnerable and getting back up time and time again. every book i read by her is amazing.

“present over perfect” by shauna niequist : this book was an affirmation of so much that i believe. we have this present moment, of that we are sure of. but it’s so easy to get caught up in the instagram “reality” or looking forward. shauna bares her heart and talks about her own struggles with accepting the present along with learning to say no. it was a quick read and would also double as a great gift to a friend.


i am about to start “lean in” by cheryl sandberg and from there, i’m off to the races! spending more time this season with my nose buried in a book.





ania styles: dainty white blouses

March 28, 2017

top: old free people / pants: black jeans / shoes: lucky flats

i have a growing collection of little white blouses. short sleeve, florals, tanks, striped – i’ll take any variation honestly.

there’s something about the color white that i find so flattering and feminine, especially with summer coming soon and warm tans on the horizon. i am eyeing this swimmie with a white top and i love love love white dresses like this one. but we’re not quite there yet with this weather. #eyerollemoji

in march and april, all you reaaaaally want is a little summer sun but we are handed spring showers. so lately as i wait for true dress weather, i’ve been wearing white blouses with skirts, jeans, black pants and everything in-between! it makes me feel like the weather is warmer than the rain outside is currently proving.

although my collection is good as is, i thought i’d gather a couple of my favs on the web for you all. i have this floral h&m one and have given the link to so many girls because the trendy shoulder ruffles but at a good price point. below i linked a couple more in a variety of price points and styles – happy white blouse shopping!

lace short sleeve | eyelet tunic | floral bell-sleeve top | tie front bell sleeve top | wrap around embroidered top | v-neck bell sleeve top


ania styles: an ode to a target dress

March 23, 2017


dress: target ‘chiffon maxi dress cream floral’

here’s the honest to goodness truth: i haven’t purchased a piece of clothing from target since soffe shorts for track in high school. i just don’t fit into their clothing very well being 5′ 9″ and having…curves. #manifeellikeawoman

so you can imagine my surprise when i walked into target the other day and saw this dress as i strolled through the store on my way to grab some cotton rounds (my life is thrilling, i understand).

my first thought: “wait, that’s cute.”

my second thought: “but there’s no way they’ll have my size or if they do, that it’ll fit well.”

(fun fact: the target i live by is the busiest in its’ district. i just order a lot of things to the store because the selection goes down so, so fast!)

then i did something i haven’t done in a LOOOONG time at target and i tried on the dress. i had the time and i have been prioritizing building the dresses portion of my closet so i figured this could be a great first step.

and it fit! it even runs large which is better for my boho vibes and anti-tight clothing style. i usually don’t love the short in the front, long in the back look — but this one proved me wrong! it’s so flowy and multi-length at the bottom that it doesn’t look as extreme as the online photos make it seem. oh and ps, it does have a comfy slip so you don’t have to worry purchasing that separately. i don’t have money to go around buying slips for every dress i own – i need to buy important things like cotton rounds.

this is a great dress to wear to SO many occasions from Easter celebrations and summer weddings, date nights and backyard bbq’s. and for the price point of under $29.99? dress dreams come true around the world.

i am trying to get better at snapping photos of clothing right after i buy them because i can’t tell you how many times i’ve purchased something, waited a month to take a photo and it’s already sold out! and ALSO, dresses are buy one, get one 50% off right now at target with free shipping at $25 sooooooooo…i’m sorry if this was the week to stick to your budget. 😉

happy spring to all! i hope you have some sunshine in the forecast soon.





march style picks

March 21, 2017

last weekend i spent some time making a blog calendar for this little spot on the web and it felt so good! i had such clarity about where i want this blog to go and what i feel is most relevant to you all.

the reason for the monthly style picks is for you all to see what i’m eyeing. so often with bloggers, they’ll comment back to me that they got a top on major discount and in a way, i wish i had known to stalk that top too. that way i would’ve snagged it on sale as well!

with these monthly posts, which will start happening the first week of every month, you’ll get an inside glance into my shopping brain and be able to see what i’m stalking until i can afford it. that’s the biggest tip i can give for shopping: put an item in your online bag and then just wait. be patient. wait some more.

here’s a great example: this free people sweater has been on my radar since september. SEPTEMBER, PEOPLE. even with my employee discount, i still felt like it was a bit overpriced so i put it in my free people and macy’s online shopping bags and would check in every so often. then, last week, i was able to score it on macy’s by downloading their app, getting 25% my first app order and applying a discount code that was running last weekend. this might sound completely absurd and sometimes it is, but that’s the way i shop! i can’t afford to spend $130 on a sweater at this point in my life so i have trained myself to be patient. sometimes it results in me missing out. but that’s fine by me because it helps me reroot in the fact that if i don’t end up getting it, that should not be the end of my world.;)

now that i’ve explained this new series better, here are my march picks! these are items i am considering buying or just really wish a magical fairy would drop on my doorstep. each image is hyperlinked to its’ source so if you also love any, feel free to shop via each photo!

do you have any items you’re eyeing? should i add something to my list? comment below if you have something you’re just obsessing over til that price drops. 😉


ania styles: bell sleeves, you make my heart sing

March 16, 2017

top: bell sleeve silk blouse / jeans: paige hoxton high-rise skinny jeans

first things first, i am part hippie and i am re-embracing that.

i say re-embracing because i think for a while there in college i convinced myself that i had a preppy style amidst all my pals at school. even though st. louis is obviously not on the east coast, the style is much more fitted and chic than the west coast where i grew up. washington and colorado have a more casual, laid back style. there are more plaid shirts, nice jeans and a blouse, natural make-up, wavy hair kind of outfits. sometimes i wear my hole-y boyfriend jeans with a plaid shirt here in st. louis to run errands and i feel almost out of place amidst the puffy vests and monograms.

but let me say just one thing before i go on: that style is not bad. the reason i mimicked it in college is because i like it. and i still do at times! i just think if you boiled me down to one style, it’d be a bit more boho meets minimalist meets flowy meets floral. but all due respect to the houndstooth wearers of the world before i go on. i love your tight pony tails and tailored pants.

complete tangent as usual.

i think if i were to choose any style era, it’d be the 70s. i love bell bottoms, i love circle sunglasses, i love embroidered florals on white tops, i love flowy sleeves and long dresses.

but this can be a biiiiiit challenging when you have to dress for work everyday and your job is not “full-time hippie”. although if i were ever on the bachelor, maybe i’d make that my job title. 😉

i really want the clothes i wear to work to still feel like me. so i’ve been very intentional about only buying clothes that i can both wear to work and to things like dinner with friends. i don’t want to have “work tops” and “fun tops”.

fortunately i don’t have to dress up for work and i can wear jeans with blouses or sweaters. this top is exactly what i want more of: it’s nice and i love dressing up a little for work but at the end of the day, i would wear this in a heartbeat (and have) to little events with friends.

i am also letting myself spend more on things i really really love. this blouse was about $50 with a sale going on (which if you buy ANYTHING at ann taylor or the loft, just wait like .4 seconds for a sale because they have one going basically permanently). honestly that is more than i usually spend on tops. ever since my purge this summer though, i have been much more focused on buying things i absolutely am smitten with and sometimes that means spending a little more for that one buy. it’s so interesting though because since i’ve eliminated the random $80 target mistakes and don’t meander through the cosmetics aisle without purpose, that even though i’m spending more occasionally on an item, i still spend less overall. it’s the best.

long story short: quality over quantity but at the very least, love over impulse. because i still sometimes shop at h&m which i wouldn’t exactly call quality. but you have to ball on a budget so it’s a healthy balance.

one quick thing before i go is about those jeans. i bought them with my discount back when i worked at anthropologie this summer and they are like freaking butter. they make your legs look miles long and would be such a good investment buy if you’re in the market for black jeans!

oh and one more thing! i’m happy to say i have many more exciting posts on the horizon if you’re been wondering what the heck i have been doing. maybe no one noticed that i veered off my two-posts-a-week schedule but i feel inclined to explain (which is my tendency). i took a little hiatus from focusing on blogging while i figured out what i really want to write about here and prioritized some other passions as well.i am going to be deleting some of my categories and hone in on travel, design and style with a smattering of pieces of my heart that i blurt out every so often. 🙂 i will be posting here more often in the coming months so keep coming back!

and thank you as always for being patient with me as i figure this whole blogging thing out. i am always so thankful to have even one person read my post.


ania styles: the lnf

March 8, 2017

shoes: lucky emmy flats / skirt: j crew cord mini / tile: “lemon gem” store 😉

i want to start “showcasing” items in my closet that lasted through the great purge this summer and i will continuous buy over and over as i wear through them.

so here’s my thinking: maybe everyone need a lbd but what you reaaaally need is lnf.

little. nude. flats.

they’re the most easygoing shoe in my closet. comfy, easy to wear casually or dress up and the best part? they’re the PERFECT shoe when i think to myself “i wish i could just not wear shoes” because it looks like you’re not. they don’t really add or subtract from the outfit.

i wear them with flowy blouses, chunky sweaters as we go from fall to winter or winter to spring, denim, skirts, dresses…the list goes on! now that it’s spring, i am back to wearing them a couple of times a week. and by a couple, i mean close to 5 times a week because i really don’t have a lot of other spring shoe options. i will keep you in the loop as i buy two more pairs to rotate this summer but for now, these really just seal the deal every single time.

why just two more pairs of warm weather shoes? because i don’t need any more. i want a nice pair of sandals that i could also wear to work, a heeled something (can’t decide between a clog or some sort of heeled sandal) and these little flats. easy peasy. done and done. i am sick of shopping and shopping for more and more. so i set myself a number, spend my time and money on just what i want and then go back to paying attention to the things that deserve my attention more than the shoes in my closet. 🙂

oh, and this is the darling home store in tower grove that the tile floor above is in! if i could squeeze a store, i would squeeze this cutie.


p.s. has everyone listened to ed sheeran’s new album? oh goodness, i am in DEEP. i can’t seem to listen to anything but ed!

home design

diy: sweet tree branch photo display

March 2, 2017

i have been looking for a way to cover big spaces in our apartment without breaking the bank. nice paintings, big frames and large prints are SO expensive!!!

i found this tree branch at a store here in st. louis called k hall designs. the flagship store is over by my church so obviously i haaaave to go in there all the time. 😉 it’s the store that makes lots of the candles you see at stores like anthropologie and cute little boutiques except it’s all condensed into one heavenly space. i love to pop by just to, you know, check in on things, peruse new scents, touch all the soft loungewear. the usual.


that store gives me the BEST inspiration. honestly these days i look forward to shopping not for the things i’ll buy, but the decor inspiration i might gain. stores like free people, k hall, anthropologie and even a garden shop i adore give me ideas for how to decorate our apartment or what i want my closet to look like. and luckily for me, my roommate doesn’t mind that i am constantly rearranging and fiddling with this and that and buying a million plants. and by a million i mean 4 (for now).

so when i saw the tree branch, i was instantly hooked. i love bringing outdoors, indoors. and then i found out it was ten dollars and my mom practically shrieked with joy for me.

i hung it from my ceiling with tiny hooks, bought twine from Michael’s with their 40% coupon (if you shop their and don’t use that coupon, i need you to do that so i don’t stress about the money you’re not saving), and got free prints from parabo press!

side note real quick about the prints: I WAS SO IMPRESSED. honestly. like really impressed.

  1. the packaging is so darn cute
  2. the photos are on this sturdy paper that just really makes me happy
  3. i love how my instagram was able to come to life in little squares
  4. your first order is free – so i literally just paid shipping for lots of them!!! go check it out!!!

i don’t even know if i can justify making this a diy post because it’s so simple but just for your info:

  1. hang the branch from your ceiling so it creates a cool 3d look and also so that whatever you hang from it doesn’t scrape against your wall
  2. wrap twine a couple of times around each end to create this makeshift meets rustic meets “i just casually have a branch in my room” look
  3. eyeball it and hang a couple of strands of twine so you can clip your photos to them. i say eyeball it because i think a little imperfection in this wall decor makes it look better! if you want that boho, easy going vibe, you’ll have to be okay with a little imperfection. 🙂
  4. using teeeeeny clothespins (again at Michaels, again with the 40% off coupon), hang your parabo prints and be have sweet dreams under your square memories for many, many moons to come!

even though this came out looking so sweet and girly, i don’t know if this bed look is really what i am going for. it’s darling of course, but i think the colors are a bit more soft than i’d love. which makes no sense but i am still trying to figure out my style both with fashion and home. ideally, i want to hang little votive candle holders and little potted plants and maybe some twinkle lights. make it feel like a little more anthro meets free people meets ania’s budget. but i also had a tree branch hanging from my ceiling so i had to do something for now. 🙂

also, while we’re on the topic of dream beds, i am eyeing this duvet cover and i dreeeeaaaaaammmmmm of a bedroom that looks like so. also i think i might make a planter because god knows i can’t afford a fancy one. literally. god and i talk about plants. among other things. 😉

i guess that’s all to say that okay is just as good as perfect ESPECIALLY with home design because things can get so expensive so so quickly. so be okay with less. spend your money on what you want to spend it on. don’t feel the need to rush into decisions to impress visitors. take your sweet time and make it your own.

i’d rather spend a little for now so i can have something there while eyeing things i really want and dreaming up new ways to decorate than splurge really quickly just because i think i need to have it done all at once. because i don’t. so these sale shams and this sweet branch are good enough for me for now.