I’m doing a campaign with J. Crew on Instagram today and I wanted to share the photos here because I just love how they turned out and I wanted to talk about the inspiration behind it.

I think I’ve talked about the process of collaborations on here, but often you get a lookbook with pieces the brand wants you to feature. It can take a while to put together a cohesive head-to-toe look with items from a PDF document. (It’s so different than shopping in a store!) Often, the items in the lookbook aren’t online yet, so you’re really going off of product shots and guessing how something might fit/look on your body. One of the methods I follow is to pick out one thing I love and then try to build an outfit from the lookbook from there– usually outfit planning in Canva a la Polyvore. (I also hold my breath as the clothes arrive and pray the outfit comes together IRL.)

In this case, it was this little boater hat that inspired the rest of the look. It’s so adorable and reminded me of racing in Henley (14 years ago 😲).

When I ultimately put on the outfit and was thinking of where to shoot it for the campaign, I knew I wanted to take the photos in this local garden. The outfit felt very Mary Lennox coded and this garden in a nearby town reminds me so much of The Secret Garden. Had to do it.

I recently sat down and thought about all the various cultural moments that definitely shaped my sartorial leanings then (and now). The American Girl dolls and books (of course); the movies A Little PrincessThe Parent Trap, Madeline. And… The Secret Garden. My sister and I would watch all these films on repeat. We had the VHS tapes, would rent from Blockbuster, and saw the movies we could see in theaters so many times. We loved the clothes and the scenery just as much of the stories.

Did you have any movies or books that greatly impacted your style choices as an adult?

How cute and darling is this rickrack dress?! It’s lined and short but not too short. It’s also fairly simple and flattering and the rickrick adds just enough visual interest. I love the white on white.

Also this tote has been a go-to for me already. It’s summery and feels like a beach bag… while also fitting everything I might need as a mom of two. When we went to Florida this spring, I carried this as my everyday bag each time.


Hat // Sweater // Dress // Sandals // Tote // Sunglasses

* All items c/o J. Crew


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Love this “behind the scenes.” Definitely putting in a request for more of this type of content! It is so interesting! I love this outfit and the place you decided to shoot it.


Enjoyed reading your post ~ Mary Kate & Ashley movies definitely inspired my style choices.

Kristen |

This has to been one of my favorite outfit posts you’ve done in ages! I love the photos and the inspiration behind it.
We are similar ages, so I always smile when you talk about the movies you loved – because me and my sister were obsessed with all the same ones.