10/31/14

Travel Log with MILK TEETHS

Hi guys, Happy Halloween!  I am super excited to bring to you the third edition of a new travel series on the blog called Travel Log!  While I am in Italy traveling without a laptop, I have invited a few of my favorite blogging gals who also have been bitten by the wanderlust bug to share some of their favorite travel experiences with you guys!  So please welcome Ashley of Milk Teeths, who will be sharing her beautiful trip to Portugal with you guys!

Hey there! I'm Ashley and I blog over at MILK TEETHS and sell vintage clothing and home goods at my shop, MILK TEETHS vintage. Besides blogging and slinging vintage online, I'm a total travel nut and am always scheming and daydreaming about my next travel plans. When Hannah asked me to guest post I got super excited since writing about travel and off the beaten path locations is high on my list of Things That I Love To Do.

What is a favorite or most interesting trip that you've taken and when did you go?

This May my boyfriend and I saved up and took a three week long trip around Europe. While we had previously traveled to France and England, and he had been to Spain several times before, we decided to included Portugal on our itinerary since neither of us had been but had heard such amazing things, especially about Lisbon.


What specific areas did you go to while there?

While in Portugal we stayed in Lisbon in the Baixa-Chiado area which is sort of the hip and artsy part, although to me, everywhere looked hip and artsy! What struck me most about Lisbon is the amazing architecture. This is a city that is NOT afraid of color and patterns, many of the buildings were brightly painted and had beautiful azulejo tiles giving the area such a festive feel. Also, street art is alive and well and for the most part, the city seems to welcome it. You'll see colorful graffiti all over which is a nice juxtaposition with the cobblestone streets and old architecture. Within Lisbon itself there are many neighborhoods to explore, favorites including the twisting medieval streets of the Alfama and the amazing views from the Bairro Alto.
     Lisbon has a very fast and easy to use Metro system, so day trips around Lisbon and to different seaside cities are a breeze. Definitely a must do if you are in Lisbon is visiting Sintra, a town that is about 30 minutes away via Metro. Let's just say the whole city is straight out of a fairy tale and there are several UNESCO world heritage sites within Sintra itself.


For someone else thinking about traveling here, what were your top 2-3 favorite things that you did while there?

-Definitely take the Metro and go to Sintra. While there we visited the Quinta Da Regalaira, which is an old estate that has the most amazing gardens. Think waterfalls, cave systems, secret pathways, and lots of greenery. The vibe is very mystical and other wordly. This is probably the coolest site that I have ever been to. Very highly recommended.

-Lisbon is HILLY and some neighborhoods seem to have almost vertical staircases that you need to climb in order to get to. With that said, the views on top of these hills are amazing! I would recommend having a picnic in the Bairro Alto area, at the Miradouro which is a park that overlooks the city and the Tagus river. Lots of people picnic and drink wine, the scene is very picturesque. Doesn't hurt that for those coming from the US, Lisbon is very affordable so you can go crazy at the markets and buy up bottles of vinho verde, good bread, olives, and cheese!


What do you like to wear while traveling? Any tips for looking cute but still being comfortable and mobile for a day of exploring? If you have a favorite outfit or two that you wore while there I'd love to see!

I am ALL about being comfortable when I travel. I never pack heels or shoes with bad arch support. In fact, my number one tip is to go to New Balance and get a custom fit insole for your shoes because it will save your feet. When my boyfriend and I travel we are literally gone from morning til evening, walking walking walking! We're not the type to stay at the hotel and be lazy.
     Besides insoles, I pack longish, wrinkle-free vintage dresses ( knee length and longer) because the last thing I want to do while walking around all day is wonder if I'm flashing anyone on the street. Also we tend to duck into a lot of churches so sticking to a more modest dress code is key for being able to explore all sorts of historic and religious sites without being disrespectful.



Discovering new foods is one of my favorite parts about traveling! What was the best thing you ate while there? Is this something that the area is known for?

We took a special trip to Belem (a coastal neighborhood) in order to visit Pasteis de Belem, a very old and famous sweet shop in Lisbon. They are known for their pastel de nata, a small eggy custard served atop a crackly crust. These were amazing and well worth the trek!



Lastly, What is your favorite memory from the trip?
Super cheesy but the thing I remember most about Lisbon is strolling aimlessly through the city at night with my boyfriend. The city and buildings are lit up beautifully, the temperature drops (believe me, it gets sizzling during the day), and most nights we would hear the sound of strings and violin music drifting up and out from various restaurants. So very picturesque and lovely; I definitely plan on visiting again.   

Thanks so much for sharing your amazing trip with us Ashley!  I hope everyone has a fun Halloween!

10/29/14

Travel Log with Lala Faux Bois

I am super excited to bring to you the second edition of a new travel series on the blog called Travel Log!  While I am in Italy traveling without a laptop, I have invited a few of my favorite blogging gals who also have been bitten by the wanderlust bug to share some of their favorite travel experiences with you guys!  So please welcome Lisa of Lala Faux Bois, who will be sharing her beautiful trip to Greece with you guys!

Hey there Braided Bandit readers! I’m Lisa and I blog over at Lala Faux Bois- mostly about my personal style, love of thrifting and vintage, and obsession with traveling. I have an incurable case of wanderlust and I usually start planning my next vacation the minute I get home from one. 

What is a favorite or most interesting trip that you've taken and when did you go?

It’s so hard to pick a favorite trip, I swear every time we come home from one I think it’s my new favorite! But the last time we travelled to Europe in the summer of 2010 was definitely one of the best. We spent some time in France, Italy, and Greece- the latter really standing out because it was my first time there, and we were able to squeeze in some beach time in the middle of all the sight seeing.


What specific areas did you go to while there?

We spent the first night in Athens at a hotel walking distance from a huge outdoor market and The Acropolis. We were able to watch the sun set over The Acropolis from our roof top bar, which was an amazing way to kick off our visit.
     The next day we took a boat to the island of Hydra, where we spent the next few days. This island doesn’t allow any motorized vehicles, everyone arrives by boat, and locals use donkeys to transport supplies to their homes and businesses. I love being in places that we can walk everywhere, and I was surprised how cheap everything was for how remote the island is.


For someone else thinking about traveling here, what were your top 2-3 favorite things that you did while there? 

No visit to Athens is complete without wandering around The Acropolis, and seeing historical sites such as the Parthenon and theater of Herod Atticus- the history is mind blowing! Also cats. There were so many cats wandering around The Acropolis, and a million times more on the island of Hydra :) 
     While on Hydra, we took a lot of time to relax on the beach and float in the sea, with some hikes between beaches offering amazing views of the vibrant blue water. 


What do you like to wear while traveling? Any tips for looking cute but still being comfortable and mobile for a day of exploring?  If you have a favorite outfit or two that you wore while there I'd love to see!

One perk to traveling in the summer is being able to pack lightly and wear easy, comfortable clothes. But any time of year I’m a big fan of dresses and skirts, and I find they’re perfect for traveling because you can look cute but still be comfortable, and even in the winter you can layer them with tights or leggings. 
     It’s always important to have some good shoes for walking around all day and I usually bring a pair of Minnetonka Mocs or Toms for this, because they are stylish but comfortable and don’t take up a lot of space. If it’s colder, a pair of comfortable boots can work for walking around and nights out.



Discovering new foods is one of my favorite parts about traveling! What was the best thing you ate while there?  Is this something that the area is known for?

I am a huge fan of Mediterranean food so of course I had fun eating my way through the trip! So much hummus, super fresh Greek salads, and lots of Tzatziki. The food was all pretty cheap, and we drank a lot of Mythos, the local beer, which were only 1€ for huge bottles! Sometimes eating as a vegetarian on vacation can be a challenge, but it was really easy there.


Lastly, What is your favorite memory from the trip?

We spent the Greek portion of the trip with one of my best friends and his wife, and they are a couple we travel really well with because we have similar interests on vacation. Sharing such an unforgettable trip with Brian and close friends just can’t be beat! It was the kind of trip that leaves you craving more travel and adventures :)


Thank you so much for having me Hannah- I hope you are having the most amazing time in Italy and I can't wait to see your pics! 

10/27/14

Travel Log with Cuddly Cacti

Today I am super excited to bring to you the first edition of a new travel series on the blog called Travel Log!  While I am in Italy traveling without a laptop, I have invited a few of my favorite blogging gals who also have been bitten by the wanderlust bug to share some of their favorite travel experiences with you guys!  So please welcome Dus of Cuddly Cacti, who will be sharing one of her beautiful trips to Mexico with you guys!

Hi everybody! I’m Dus, a life(style) blogger over at Cuddly Cacti, and owner and director of fair trade shop Mitla Moda. I’m passionate about eco-friendly living, social entrepreneurship, fair trade, community building, and cats. And coffee keeps me going.

What is a favorite or most interesting trip that you've taken and when did you go?

For my most interesting trip that I’ve taken, I’m actually going to combine two trips here, because on the first occasion, I actually got to visit both places at the same time, but then went back to each separately when two different friends later visited while I was living in Mexico for about a year. These two places are the regions of Oaxaca and Chiapas; it’s crazy to think how time has flown when I just looked down at the year and realized these trips were three years ago already! I’ve been really fortunate to travel more since, thanks to a crazy dosage of free standby flights (which means way more nights sleeping in airports than you’d imagine), but these trips still stand up as some of the most fun and interesting.


3.  What specific areas did you go to while there?

The first time, I went to both areas while a friend was visiting over the winter holidays, and that made me realize I had to go back to see more! We always traveled by overnight bus from Mexico City, so my basic game plan was usually the same - explore the main town the first, sleep-deprived day, and then head out to see the natural wonders the next day. In Oaxaca the must see spot is Hierve el Agua, and you can either take an all-day tour for probably about $25 that takes you to visit ruins, tour a micro mezcal factory, visit some small towns, and Hierve el Agua – which is the natural pools shown below. This is the best option if you’re pressed on time, but you won’t get to spend too much time at the pools. We also met some people in the hostel who took a taxi (for probably around the same price per person) to the pools in the morning and got picked up later, getting to spend most of the day relaxing in the serene spot.


In Chiapas, I recommend making San Cristobal de las Casas your home base for travel (skip Tuxtla) because that little town up in the hills is just gorgeous. Tour around town for a day, and then I highly recommend visiting Sumidero Canyon (seen below). If you have even more time, the options are limitless - you can take a little tour to visit surrounding towns and see gorgeous artisan work (make sure to purchase it from the artisans, not re-sellers, and at fair prices for all the time that goes into the work) or you can keep heading farther south to even more natural wondering in Mexico like the ruins in Palenque andAguas Azul (that link will take you to my post on the gorgeous places if you’d like to see more).


4.  For someone else thinking about traveling here, what were your top 2-3 favorite things that you did while there? 

In Oaxaca, my favorite things to do are exploring the small towns and natural wonders outside of the main city. I’d recommend booking a tour your first day there, and you’ll see all the hot spots, then you can see which, if any, you’d want to spend more time at the next day. And the same goes for in Chiapas, but Sumidero Canyon is definitely on the top of my list there!


5.  What do you like to wear while traveling? Any tips for looking cute but still being comfortable and mobile for a day of exploring?  If you have a favorite outfit or two that you wore while there I'd love to see!

As far as travel goes, I’m much more on the be super comfortable over super cute scale, but of course when you’re travelling you’re going to have tons of pictures too and don't want to dislike how you look in all of them. I like to pack light, so I’ll usually just wear leggings or really comfy, stetchy jeggings and tennis shoes on the bus, and then bring one more pair of pants, shorts, maybe one flowey skirt, a few shirts that’ll match with everything, sandals that would be fine getting drenched, and one extra pair of tennis shoes just in case, sometimes. I never accessorize much while travelling, so my “tips for looking cute while exploring” would I suppose be to wear a top you love, mine being some of my favorite ones handmade by artisans in Mexico, and then bottoms that match everything.


6.  Discovering new foods is one of my favorite parts about traveling! What was the best thing you ate while there?  Is this something that the area is known for?

Oh man, Southern Mexico is known for some seriously amazing food! But, it’s so hard for me to pass up a tacos al pastor, especially since we always happened across the most delicious ones for like 50 cents a pop. But I also remember some amazing pazole, and I do believe I tried a fried cricket, although it mostly just tasted like friend crunchiness, so I wouldn’t really recommend that. I highly recommend trying tons of different foods in Mexico, but probably not the street food unless you have a really tough stomach. Oh, but definitely do get the corn on a stick or cup from a street vendor and just pretend the vendor didn’t toss on a half cup of mayo because you’re on vacation.


7.  Lastly, What is your favorite memory from the trip?

It’s near impossible for me to pick just one favorite memory, but definitely travelling with some of my best friends made the trips a blast. I love when you can be all serious site seeing, but then spontaneously act like a goofball dancing around or something (being respectful of what you’re seeing and the surrounding cultures of course).


Thanks so much for having me Hannah and I can't wait to hear and see all about this amazing trip you're going on!! 

10/24/14

Ciao Italy!

I wrote this post in advance before I left, but I will finally be arriving in Italy right about now!  After sixteen hours of travel, I am surely exhausted but super excited.  R and I arrived in Naples and meet my parents who are already there to take a ferry to Sorrento.  We will be staying in cute apartments we are renting from local people and will be moving from place to place every few days.


Outfit Details:
Dress - Oasap
Hat - H&M
Boots - DSW
Cardigan - Target

I thought it would be appropriate to wear this picturesque dress with the Italian coast on it for a day of packing and errand running right before I left!  Don't worry, I didn't actually bring it with me to wear... even I have my limits of "liking to match the scenery."  I won't have my computer with me while I'm here so I will not be posting my regular outfits, but I DO have an amazing series of quest bloggers lined up for you guys, so stay tuned.  And if you would like to follow along with my Italian adventure, you can follow me on instagram!
xo Hannah

10/22/14

The Braided Bandit x Shear Bliss Salon

Hi guys!  I am just stopping in with a super quick post today with some photos of Shear Bliss Studios, where I started locally selling vintage about a month ago!  What started as a haircut with one of the salon owners, Whitney, turned into a fun business collaboration that I am super excited about. Whitney had wanted more of a boutique vibe for her salon where people could shop and relax before and after their hair appointments, and I had been thinking about a brick and mortar selling location for my vintage, so it was really the perfect opportunity!

It is so fun to see the rack of fun vintage colors and prints against the beautiful colored walls of the salon.  We are also hoping to plan a fun pop-up shop and maybe even a holiday party in the near future!  So for any Coloradans reading this, I highly recommend stopping in for an amazing haircut at Shear Bliss Studios, and make sure to take a peak at the pretty vintage clothing up front that will be restocked often!
xo Hannah

Shear Bliss Studios
941 Main Street
Longmont, Co 80501
Annalise- 720-947-9472
Whitney- 720-378-3331
shearblissstudios@gmail.com

10/20/14

Sail Away {Makeover Monday}

Hi guys! It's been quite awhile since I showed a little makeover here on the blog!  While I do small alterations to most of the vintage I sell in the shop, 99% of the time I am working on a large pile of clothes at once and always forget to take before pictures!  For this darling sailor dress, I actually remember to take  before and after though, so without further adieu...
 So, the dress was pretty darn cute to begin with but the length and sleeves felt a bit frumpy.  I altered the hem and sleeves to make it a bit more modern and wearable.  What do ya think?!  It's now listed for sale in the shop here if you're interested!

I also want to say a great big HAPPY BIRTHDAY to R today! We went to the Denver zoo yesterday for an early celebration and the zoo people let him in for free, gave him a birthday pin, and even a certificate for free ice cream! I can't wait until he gets home from work so he can open presents!

Anyway, lots to do before we leave on our big Italy trip on Thursday!  I hope you're all having a great start to you week!  Oh and if you haven't entered my cardigan giveaway yet, please do so here!  We need about ten more entries for it to count! Thanks guys!
xo Hannah

10/17/14

Campfire Yellow

My favorite outfits are ones where I am super comfortable but still feel pulled together, and this is totally one of those outfits.  This is also a new favorite because it features the work of two amazing fellow Etsy sellers, Salvage and Stone and Two Sting Jane!  



Outfit Details:
Campfire Headband - c/o Salvage and Stone
Hanger Tank -giveaway, Two String Jane
Yellow Duster - c/o Oasap
Pants - Marshalls
Heels - thrifted
Purse - vintage

This beautiful headband was handmade from recycled fabric by Nic Young, Owner and maker behind Etsy shop Salvage and Stone.  I absolutely love that this one is aptly named the "Campfire Headband" and its so perfect for fall.  I usually find wearing hair accessories gives me a headache pretty quickly, but this is made of a soft jersery fabric and it was super comfortable on my head.  There is still one left of this same print in her shop, and I promise you won't be disappointed if you decide to swoop one up!  Nic also writes a blog by the same name, so make sure to go and say hello!

Next up we have this awesome tank I got in the mail from self-taught designer Alyssa Zukas who runs the awesome Etsy apparel shop Two String Jane.  I actually won the tank in an instagram giveaway she was hosting, and its one  of the most comfortable pieces of clothing I now own.  Let's just say I may or may not have slept in it last night as well! There are so many more things I have on my wishlist from her shop right now, including this Bon Appetit hand stenciled sweatshirt and this Confetti Dots tee!  Seriously, you won't regret taking a peak at her designs.

Gosh you guys, Etsy and handmade things are just the best!  I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

xo Hannah
p.s. Don't forget to enter my giveaway to win a cozy aztec cardigan of your choice here!