Stars and Stripes on My Mind: elevating my outfit to 4th of July style

4th of July Style

how to dress for independence day

american flag bag

One of the simplest ways to add interest to any outfit is with accessories.  I am always talking about starting with a great white top and denim bottoms.

Doing it yet again.

Honestly if there's one holiday I want to wear my colors for it's Independence Day.  The nostalgia and pride that I feel for our Red, White, & Blue.  You can't beat it.  So grateful.  But I don't always have an American Flag maxi dress hanging in my closet.  Why not?  I know I should.    

So in this case I'm getting all patriotic by taking this awesome asymmetrical white tank and slim fit super flattering pair of denim shorts and adding a serious pop of red with this hand knit necklace by Masha, my favorite striped espadrilles, and the quintessential American bag that should be toted to every beach day and bbq this summer.  

Gonna wear it out.

Can't forget my triple threat of go-to accessories, if you read any of my blog you will see them on repeat - rose gold aviators, hand-formed lariat necklace and guitar string bracelets.

And how about this for a Seattle summer night.  This place, it's pretty darn special.

Almost everything I am wearing is from Queen Anne Dispatch.  If you are in the Seattle area, this is a boutique worth frequenting.  Such a treasure trove of head to toe items, thoughtful gift items and 4th of July flare.

statement necklace

slim fit shorts

All of the following items can be found at Queen Anne Dispatch (and they ship so call them)
Shorts - Prana
Red Necklace - Masha Designs
Gold Necklace - Lucia K. Jewelry Lariat
Bracelets - Guitar String Bracelets
Flag Bag
Sunglasses - Smith

Shoes c/o Faryl Robin.

linking up with pleated poppy for what i wore weds.

find more on my instagram, thekirstyfiles, follow along and say hello!


Simply June in Seattle

Typical June weather means open toe shoes and layers.  This is sort of my favorite way to dress.  It's an easy formula:  favorite tank or tee + great pair of jeans + comfy cardigan or lightweight jacket.  Then accessorize.

You can also see these jeans here, I didn't love their length so I cut them into crops and I love how they turned out.

And my shoes - back in stock for the 3rd time.  Great price for a savvy summer sandal.  Don't wait too long.

cardigan - Zara.  old
tank - Bobi, Queen Anne Dispatch.  also here
jeans - 7 for all Mankind.  old
oldsandals - Sole Society, Nordstrom.  also here
hat - Hinge, Nordstrom.  similar
necklace - Lucia K. Jewelry.

Happy Wednesday.



Are you feeling the flares yet?

Meet my new flares.  They just keep creeping into my wardrobe.  Distressed and an undone hem.  I know, but I didn't have any in this light of wash.  And again Mavi, they are fitting my backside like a glove.  I couldn't help but tuck my shirt in all the way around.   Full Exposure.  Typically I am a mullet tuck girl but I am stepping outside of my comfort zone, and documenting it.

I have a friend who has legs for days, you know the kind - she rocks skinny jeans and flats like nobody's business.  She has had some hesitation into flaredom, they feel a bit "costume-like" to her.  Maybe that's why I love them.  And I love the long leg elusion that they create.

So bring on the dress-up.

In all serious, if you are thinking of flares these are a great place to start, great price, great fit.  Higher waisted and perfectly distressed.  These are your summer jeans.  They even come in different lengths.

My leopard print blouse is an old favorite.  I love the print, and the sleeveless button up style, its longer in the back but light weight, lending itself well to being tucked in or not tucked in - see it here.

Plus I am super stoked over my Goodwill score - a burgundy suede skinny belt for .99cents.

 shirt - H&M.  old
jeans - Mavi, Queen Anne Dispatch.  also here and on sale here
belt - Goodwill
sunglasses - Smith, Queen Anne Dispatch, also here
clutch - Finn Leather Goods
nail polish - Karu in Winter White c/o, find at MooreaSeal
shorter necklace - Lucia K. Jewelry
Long Necklace - Trina Turk, Rocksbox.  use code thekirstyfilesxoxo for a free month!

photos by Elizabeth.


Have you entered our Instagram Giveaway, see details here?  

See more of my daily adventures and outfits on Instagram - thekirstyfiles.  


Countdown to Summer Pants Giveaway with Coco on the Go leggings

Summer, so much anticipation.  and expectations.  Memories to be made, vitamin D to be soaked up.  Sand in the toes.  S'mores and Champagne - not that you need summer for that.  Sunscreen.  Summer just smells good.  It's hard to believe it's only a week away.

I'm already nostalgic for what's to come.  And I'm sad that its gonna be over before we know it.  I know, my husband says I'm complicated.  But so worth it.

Can we talk about my leggings...

When I lived in Laguna Beach I discovered Coco On The Go leggings.  Nicole would be testing all her awesome leggings, and every single time I saw her in Bar Class she was swoon worthy.  In leggings.  Right?  Finally I convinced her to sell me this pair out of the trunk of her car, and my love for them has never wavered.  

These leggings in particular - the color, the print, the fit, the wide waist band.  Did you notice they are reversible?  Coco On The Go pretty much thinks of everything.  Except how to get a workout without working out.  Hmmm.  Worth going though to check yourself out in the mirror.  Just saying. 

Want to win a pair?  Check out the details at the end of the post...

**Countdown to Summer Pants Giveaway**

Enter to win a pair of your choice of Coco On The Go Leggings.  Here's how:

1.  Follow Jenn, Myself and Coco On the Go on Instagram
2.  In instagram - Tag a friend in the comments of any of the #CountdownToSummerPantsGiveaway posts.

Bonus:  Additional entries for every extra friend you tag.

Contest ends Tues June 21st at Midnight.  Winner will be announced the following Weds on Instagram.  US residents only.  



The Cool Dry, Kirsty's curls

I only wash my hair every 4-5 days, sometimes longer, that is a long time to have a bad hair day if an experimental styling process goes wrong.  So I tend not to waiver, if it ain't broke don't fix it.  I'd like to think I have my curl process pretty dialed in.

When it comes to drying, I like to partly airdry, partly diffuse.  Complete airdry leaves my curls flat and complete diffusing leaves me in a Shirley Temple Show Poodle state. 

It's not good.

Recently my fellow curly friend told my about the Cool Dry.  Up until now I had always used hot heat on the low setting.

Curls PSA: You should NEVER diffuse your hair on hot heat and high setting, no no no.  So bad.  It makes curls angry.  

Here's what I did, and I LOVED the result.

 1. After I've washed/conditioned and put gel in my hair, when my hair was a little over half dry, I rub a medium amount of Ouidad Pomade all over the palm of my hands and gently smooth over my curls.

 2. Then I diffused my curls on cool heat, high setting until almost dry, at the very end I spritzed my hair with Ouidad Finishing Spray and did one more quick go-around with the diffuser.

(cool and low)

(sometimes I pin down the crazy curl on the side of my head so it dries a bit more tame)

(I don't tip my head upside down when drying - too much frizz! Just gently sideways and I lift the curls with the diffuser)

Annnnnd the difference!

Way less frizz at the roots (oh those grays!), heat from drying my curls typically causes a lot of frizz at the roots, I try to be very careful to not dry my hair all the way at the scalp.

Bouncier natural curls.  It mimicked the results I get if I lay down and let my curls air dry without the effect of gravity waying them down.  Oh if I could only lay down and rest for 30 mins when I am getting ready to Run out the door.  Even at the end of the day my curls had body and bounce that isn't always a given.

Shinier curls.  It seems like cool does seal the cuticle.  Plus in these warmer weather months, it's so nice not to be blowing heat at my head.  

Of course it did take a bit longer than hot heat would to dry my hair, but it was so worth it, I felt like it gave my curls more time to form on their own.  And the less heat applied to curls the better.

(my curls at the end of the day.)

For more hair tips, check out "the Curl Files" page.

And for those of you who have been asking, here's my round up of tried and true hair products:

Gel //  Pomade //  Shine Serum //  Finishing Spray // No Build-Up Hairspray

I'd love to hear tips and tricks you may have for living the curly life.



Sparkling and Spiked Rosemary Lemonade: Kirsty's cocktails

As the weather heats up and BBQ's are a plenty, it's time to break out the Sparkling Rosemary Lemonade, it's a wonderful addition to any gathering, and it's even better spiked...

And a gathering can be just me, myself and I.

Because when you need to beat the heat, and toast yourself to a day well-lived, or even just lived, this is in my go-to rotation.

This little hostess gift was featured on Glitter Guide, it's a pinterest favorite when the sun comes out.  I wonder how many people have made this over the years, or been given this gift??  Love that thought.

I have updated my recipe a tad because I am super into macerating fruit now.  Gosh that sounds almost inappropriate.  Here me out, by macerating the lemons instead of heating you keep the fresh vibrant lemon taste and lose the lemon drop candy taste that happens with simple syrup, and I don't strain it because we like the pulp.

Fiber not Fly Wings.

So its a preference really.

No judging.

Here's how you macerate.  Oh man.
1.  The ratio is about 1lb lemons to 1/2sugar.
2.  Zest 1 lemon, and using a citrus reamer juice about 4 (I like the hand reamer because you can get all the yummy pulp too.)
3.  Mix zest and juice with 1/2cup sugar and a couple sprigs rosemary, leave them whole so you can pull them out when done.
4.  Let sit on counter for at least 30 mins, stirring occasionally.  Eventually all the sugar will dissolve,  it's ready.
5.  Use or store in fridge, up to a few days.

Use this in place of your simple syrup.  You can adjust based on your sugar preferences.

1 part Vodka
1 part Macerated Lemons or Simple Syrup (more or less depending on sweet tooth)
2 parts Sparkling Water or Club soda.
Garnish with Lemon Wedge and a big ol twig of Rosemary!  Trust me.   Or at least a sprig.

Disclaimer:  A slight source of frustration for my darling sister-in-law, I am not a recipe follower, I am a winger.  So just do this and see.  Hey it's always a work in progress and requires lots of taste-testing.  That's a good thing.

Please comment what you think and changes you made.



Linen Culottes with Off the Shoulder Top.

This sweet little home across from the Pacific Ocean is one of my favorite spots.  Sweet conversations while lingering over inventive dinners, listening to the steel-drum band that is playing down the boardwalk.  One of my boys favorite climbing trees is in this yard, it's also where they learned to build scrap wood robots.  It's one of those places that will always linger in our memories.  It's a great place to breathe deep and plan out our next big ideas.

About my outfit,

Linen Culottes:  the key to these pants is that the waist must be cinched at your natural waist - your narrowest part, then the rest of the volume just sort of works.  Also keep your top more fitted.  Again culottes - love them and they're not leaving anytime soon.

And of course this top - it's so simple but so amazing.  The fit is spot on, and it's just a slight off the shoulder - great for trying out this season's hot trend but not feeling over-exposed.

And my favorite shoes right now are back in stock, for the 3rd time.  They run big in my opinion, well the straps run big so if you have narrow feet I'd say 1/2 size down.

top - Theory, Nordstrom
pants - ASOS
shoes - Sole Society
earrings - Lucia K. Jewelry
sunglasses - Smith, Queen Anne Dispatch
lipstick - birchbox

Photos by Angie.

Happy Monday.