Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Secret Blogger Club #10

Hello lovelies! I started this semester determined to bring Pennies & Paper back up to par, but I've been a little behind thanks to the storm of thesis-homework-events-work-club-life that's hit me. In a few weeks I will be free (and then will have to really focus on the more terrifying job applications), but for now it's one post a week :)

Today, I have very exciting news--I'm co-hosting a link-up with Kels from The Blonder Side of Life. This link up goes live every Wednesday, and it's all about making new blog friends and discovering new posts.

Kels started this because she felt a little excluded from the "big blog" culture. As another baby blog (maybe I'm a toddler blog by now?) I couldn't agree more. That being said, anyone and everyone is welcome to link up--big blogs and little!

Secret Blogger Club #10 | Pennies & Paper Blog #linkup

Here are some blog posts I'm loving this week:

// Floral Frenzy (Trends & Tolstoy) CM has one of those fashion blogs where everything she posts is fun and inspiring. She's definitely a motivator for me to post more outfits on my own blog. This outfit has blue and flowers and spring :)

// Best Time to Post on Blogs & Social Media (Joo Joo Azad) As bloggers, we can't help but think about this, and with posts like this one, you don't have to memorize when and where you should be posting.

// College Tips: Applying to College (The Arizona Prepster) Now that I'm at the end of my college career...I kind of wish I had had this post when I begun my college search oh-so-many years ago. (My favorite tip: you're more than your GPA!)

// Giving Yourself Grace (Runs & Roses) In the past few weeks I've let my anxiety get way ahead of me. Stress, stress, and more stress. This post gives me that constant reminder I need: step back, calm down, you're actually doing okay, and it's okay not to be "as good" as other people. Everyone goes at their own pace, in their own way.

// How to Deal with Difficult People (The College Girl Daily) We all have those difficult people in our lives. If you're struggling with how to deal, check out this post :)

And your links! I can't wait to visit all of your blogs :D

The Blonder Side of Life
<div align="center"><a href="" title="The Blonder Side of Life"><img src="" alt="The Blonder Side of Life" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

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Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Easter 2015 in Pictures

Easter 2015 in Pictures | Pennies & Paper Blog

As my family has done for the past few years, we hosted Easter Sunday at our house. And, as I've done throughout college, I invited as many roommates and past-roommates as possible--this year featured six, which I think is my record!

I've always loved Easter--the food is delicious, it's usually a bit warm, and I get to hang out with both friends and family :)

Monday, April 6, 2015

Easter Cyan (+ Bridesmaid Dress First Look!)

Easter Cyan (+ Bridesmaid Dress First Look!) | Pennies & Paper Blog

I have an Easter policy: I must wear bright colors to my family's party. Freshman year of college, I wore my green corduroys. Sophomore year I went all out, and wore hot pink pants, a black T-shirt, and a bright blue cardigan--and matched TJ, one of my roommates (best outfit to date, I think!). Last year, I wore a black dress but had purple tights with black polka dots.

This year, I had quite a few options. I debated about my Peter Pilotto for Target top and a tulle skirt, my blue Peter Pilotto for Target dress, and then this epically cyan dress. Guess which one I picked?

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Airbrushed Trucker Hats

Airbrushed Trucker Hats | Pennies & Paper Blog

One of the most beautiful aspects of college (outside of education of course) is all of the free events. At my college, we have an organization that specifically hosts free events for the community. Last Friday, they had airbrushed trucker hats or towels! It was timed perfectly, and began right when I got off of work. I was super excited, because last time they had this event I missed it--and apparently, some part of me is stuck in the early 2000s and desperately wants an airbrushed trucker hat.

Monday, March 30, 2015

5 Painless Ways to Spring Clean Your Life

Spring has been in session for about a week now. To be perfectly honest, it's still quite cold in Boston--it's snowed twice since the official start of spring--but that doesn't mean I don't wake up every morning looking for flowers! After record-breaking snows and two-inch wide sidewalks, I am more than ready for warmth and soft rain and and bird song.

With spring, of course, comes spring cleaning. Instead of attempting a full room-overhaul this year (which I have tried in the past and failed miserably at), I've come up with a short list of easy, painless ways to spring clean your life.

// Review your New Year's resolutions. // The best way to make sure you're following your New Year's resolutions is to check back in with them every few months. If you find, three months into the year, that certain things are going to be impossible or take more effort than anticipated, now is the time to adjust your expectations accordingly. Remember, make them challenging, but not impossible!

//Pick something on your bucket list to actively pursue. // Most bucket list items won't get accomplished by chance. Pick one that you want to accomplish this year, or this season, or even this week, and outline steps that will help you cross it off! (I'm shooting for "get a job at a publishing house" this spring, since I'll be graduating in May and need a job anyway--and publishing jobs are the ideal!)

// Walk, walk, walk. // Let's face it: There are no more ice-cold winds and sleet storms, so you can walk nearly every day, somewhere. For me, that's walking the twelve minutes to the T instead of taking the bus. Try taking the stairs to class, or set aside even just ten minutes a day to walk around the neighborhood.

//Throw something out. // I'm not talking a full closet or room clean, but take those shirts you've been disenchanted with and finally get rid of them (or, if you really can't let go, turn them into something else!) This is also a good time to add a new good habit, like making your bed every morning or hanging up clothes right away after laundry.

//Clean up your blog. // There's always something you've been meaning to fix on your blog--thinning out tags, adding that widget, updating SEO--pick one and start on it! Spring is also a great time for a brand new blog look :)

Do you agree with these suggestions? What else is on your spring cleaning list? 
Looking for quick and painless ways to #springclean your life? Check out @jedom23's top five suggestions, now on Pennies & Paper (Click to Tweet)
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Friday, March 27, 2015

The Friday Five: Blog Design Links Love

The Friday Five: Blog Design Links Love | Pennies & Paper Blog

This past week, I did a full blog makeover--new colors, new fonts, new format. I opened up Photoshop and InDesign (although my computer hated me for it), whipped up some designs, sent them out for critques, and picked the header you see now. I've even put together my own branding packet, to try and make my posts more cohesive. And while I was able to put my newly-learned HTML skills to use (thanks, electronic publishing class!), I certainly needed some help along the way. Here are the sources I used to bring my blog a little more up to speed!

// Free Brushes.
Photoshop Brush Set by Matt Heath Illustration

// Linked Headers.

// Free Fonts.

// Social Media Tips & Tutorials.


*There are other free font websites out there, but Font Squirrel is ideal--it shows you exactly what this free font can legally be used for (print, web, ebook, etc. are all different permissions)
**JooJoo Azad is one of my favorite blogs. Seriously, Hoda is amazing. Go check her out!

The Friday Five: Blog Design Links Love | Pennies & Paper Blog

Something I've been considering for a little while now is a "Friday Five" link up. How do you guys feel about this? I was planning on rules that encourage engagement, such as posting a comment on the link before yours. I would feature one or two of the posts and bloggers from the previous week's link up. While each post would have to involve some sort of "Friday Five" or "Friday Favorites" list, they could also include other topics in the same post. Let me know your thoughts!

Do you design your own blog? What resources do you use?
Looking for some blog design help? Check out this #linkslove from Pennies & Paper for some of the best (Click to Tweet)
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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Wintry Spring + Kazuo Ishiguro

Wintry Spring Outfit & Kazuo Ishiguro Reading | Pennies & Paper Blog

Technically, it's spring. 

Effectively, it's winter. 

After weeks of #snowpocalypse, missed classes, and malfunctioning public transportation, I'm very ready for sun and warmth...but Saturday, it snowed. Again. Snow in spring. Cue fist shaking at Mother Nature--I think she has a personal vendetta against us Bostonians.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Ode to My Final Finals

Ode to My Final Finals | Pennies & Paper Blog

I graduate in eight weeks assuming I finish all of my work. My only reaction to that is...stunned silence. It feels like just yesterday I was moving into my freshman year dorm and attending Orientation, and now I'm sitting on my bed in an apartment, I'm a commuter, I've had two internships, and I'm the president of a wonderful and large publishing club.

Thanks to #snowpocalypse (and the snow hasn't even stopped!), Boston colleges have been all out of whack, mine included. We ended up adding in another week for makeup classes and finals. But I'm still in the middle of midterms--I have two papers and a project due next week! Although midterms aren't over, it's already time to think about the impending doom that is finals week.

Thinking of finals makes me sad. And happy. And anxious. Especially this year's batch, because they are the end. That's it. No more finals, because no more college. It's a tough thing to express, and yet I will try, by channeling my inner (casual) Keats and Wordsworth!
Ode to My Final Finals
These tests, signposts for the end of each of four years,
Result in freedom, relaxation, and summer sun.
Yet you, you are the sign of gathering graduation tears,
Applications, interviews, the desire to run
And escape from my sudden, true, responsibility.
For all that, you, week of two-hour tests and lengthy essays,
Cannot bring yourself to release
Our hopes for summer, thought of blissfully;
Our longing for imagined time-filled days; 
Our feelings of conclusion and progress. 
Certainly, a rough ode, but an ode nonetheless (I even tried ABABCDECDE rhyme scheme!). I truly cannot escape the conflict between my excitement to graduate, and my fear of it. By acknowledging those contrasting emotions, I hope to come to accept and integrate both of them in my mind.

Are you graduating this year? Soon? Are you as undecided on your emotions as I am?
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Friday, March 20, 2015

The Friday Five: Pantone Color Report Spring 2015 + Links Love

The Friday Five: Pantone Color Report Spring 2015 + Links Love | Pennies & Paper Blog

As someone in the publishing industry with even a (tiny) background in design, I cannot help but love Pantone. Luckily for me, Pantone has extended their reach past books and into other beautiful realms--like fashion!

The Friday Five: Pantone Color Report Spring 2015 + Links Love | Pennies & Paper Blog
This spring, those colors are: Aquamarine, Scuba Blue, Lucite Green, Classic Blue, Toasted Almond, Strawberry Ice, Tangerine, Custard, Marsala, Glacier Grey, Dusk Blue, Treetop, Woodbine, Sandstone, Titanium, & Lavender Herb. (Check out the full Spring 2015 color report for endless inspiration!)

I've been seeing lots of gorgeous pastel color coats on lookbook--I want them all! I don't usually go for pastels so this is a strange sensation for me. I have to say, of the above colors, I have a pleated skirt in "glacier grey" and a pleather coat in "classic blue," and that's about it. Here are the five colors I would love to add to my wardrobe, whether they be in coat, dress, pants, or accessory form:

// Scuba Blue - I can't resist blue! And this one is so bright :)
// Lucite Green - I lack greens, and this one is a nice calm, almost mint color.
// Tangerine - As I've said before, I love blacks and brights--this would be spectacular as an accent.
// Toasted Almond - Neutrals, especially beiges and tans, are also nonexistent in my closet.
// Dusk Blue - This is just such a beautiful color!

There are so many fun possibilities here...the trick is in actually matching the Pantone!

To top off this post of lovely colors, here are five links to things that made me happy this week:

// Ruth Negga Cast as Tulip in Preacher Pilot First of all, Preacher is my favorite comic (well...tied with Sandman). Second, I've been waiting for this to actually be made since they announced it about four years ago. Third, I am ecstatic that Tulip--a white, blonde woman in the comics--will be played by a woman of color!

// I may be a few episodes behind on The Walking Dead, but that doesn't stop me from wanting to buy everything in this Buzzfeed post.

// "The CW's First Post-Apocalypse Bisezual: How 'The 100' Treats Gender and Sexuality" If you're at all frustrated with the lack of proper non-heterosexual characters in media (and you should be), you need to be watching The 100. They treat gender and race and sexuality how we all should--as a non-issue, as something that is just one part of one's character.

// "Exhaustion is Not a Status Symbol" This post is three years old but still rings true--and I need to work much harder to remember it.

// "No one could see the color blue until modern times" In the wake of #blueandblack vs. #whiteandgold, and in light of the fact that blue is my favorite color, this article is fascinating. (By the's white and gold xD)

What made you happy this week? What are your favorites of the spring Pantone colors?

See if you agree with @jedom23's Pantone spring color picks! Which are your favorite? (Click to Tweet)

Linked with: Friday Favorites 
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Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Saint Patrick's Day Outfits: Day & Night

In my opinion, the best thing about St. Patrick's Day is the fact that we are celebrating a man who rid Ireland of snakes. (Sadly, I couldn't figure out a way to work my epic snake shoes into an outfit.)

I'm not a big fan of going out for this holiday. I think Americans are more than over-obsessed with their green beer and Irish drinking songs. Let me be clear--I love Irish drinking songs, but not in the context of uncontrolled bars stuffed with Americans.

I am quite proud of be of Irish descent, but I am also proud of my Italian heritage. But I don't claim to know anything of either culture, nor do I love stereotyped clothes about them. For that reason, you won't find any "Kiss Me I'm Irish" shirts in these outfits (my Mom found a snarky "Kiss Me I'm Irish-Ish" shirt at Target, which I appreciated, but still).

Saint Patrick's Day Outfits: Day & Night | Pennies & Paper Blog