Stripes in Sonoma

I went to back to California last week with Erik for an extended Labor Day weekend. We started in L.A. to visit college friends. We went to undergrad in L.A. and a handful of both of our friends stayed in the area following graduation. I try to go back at least once a year to see everyone and enjoy the California sunshine. After a few days in L.A., we drove up to Sonoma County for a few days for some wine tasting. We stayed at Erik's friends' house, they rent the guest/side house of a gorgeous house in the hills of Sonoma County. The land that the house is on has a huge and beautiful garden, a fish pond, and there are vineyards next door and across the street. It was the most beautiful place to stay, it was so lovely and quiet. I grew up in the Bay Area, but my parents moved to New Jersey a few years ago. Since they moved, I've only been back for about 48 hours during this past Christmas, and I barely left my grandparents house while I was there. It was nice to be back in the Bay Area and enjoy the views and the greenery unique to the area. It felt like going back home.

The first full day that we were in Sonoma County we visited two different wineries. The first was called Red Car, it was in a cute, glammed out barn type of space, with a cute little patio. The weather was perfect for sitting outside and the Pinot Noir that we tasted was delicious. The second place we went to was the Russian River Vineyards winery, it was all outside and had more of a rustic vibe. There were cute tables with wine barrels as the base and cool vintage trucks around the property. The wines here were even better than the first winery. We were all raving about the Rose and the Barbera. Our second day visiting, we drove over to Bodega Beach and walked along the beach. Even though it was September in California, the water was very cold and the beach was windy and chilly. Northern California beaches tend to be like that all year round, they're very different from Southern California beaches, were you'll find people sunbathing year round. Northern California beaches tend to be hauntingly beautiful, and they feel more like you're in nature than Southern California ones.

 Since we were in California, I opted for a looser, less structured dress the day we went wine tasting. California fashion tends to be more casual than on the East Coast, so I went with my version of more casual. This dress is one of my favorite everyday dresses. It's loose and swingy like a t-shirt dress, it's made of a soft jersey knit material, and it has pockets! I throw it on all the time to run errands, because it instantly makes me look a bit more put together when I have no makeup on and my hair is in a ponytail, but it's still incredibly comfortable. The diagonal pattern is currently sold out, but J.Crew came out with it in solid colors, and I'm very tempted to grab it in black. Even though its easy to wear more casually, it can also be dressed up with the right jewelry. Since my shoes have gold details on the main strap, I decided to stick with gold jewelry. I wanted to keep my jewelry relatively dainty, since the diagonal stripes are bold enough on their own, and this Kate Spade bangle and earrings were the perfect compliment. I felt comfortable and cute all day!