MINI PENNY: July 2012

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Looks Like Rain

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This week has completely flown by. Luckily I have a three day weekend, but sheesh. I wandered down to the Wicker Park Fest yesterday and to my dismay, my friends had to cancel. There was a lot of people watching to be had, but I didn't want to sit in the sun, so I decided to shop around a little bit instead. See more images after the jump.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Weekstagram // July 28

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Another busy, busy week in the Windy City!
  • Worked on some DIY Shirt ideas for an upcoming event. Stay tuned!
  • Baked vegan chocolate chip cookies and enjoyed them with an iced Hail Mary at New Wave Coffee.
  • Rainy days call for the cutest cat umbrella.
  • Spent many hours queuing up posts for my busy weeks ahead.
  • And in my free time, relaxed with my laptop and some Seinfeld.
  • I met a couple of new cats — Tom and Bosco!
  • But Tom was really only interested in stealing my pizza.
  • Impromptu denim matching day with Matthew at work.
  • And a friend took me to a new (to me) pizza place — Dimo's. I got a slice of vegan nacho pizza (SO DELICIOUS) and a slice of [non-vegan] mac and cheese pizza. I can't even describe...!
Follow Mini Penny on Instagram @Chaplinnn.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Silver Screen Style // Annie Hall

I'm a sucker for Woody Allen and am always struggling to decide which is my favorite film — Annie Hall or Manhattan? Annie Hall was the first Allen movie I watched that really sparked my interest in his writing — plus I have a soft spot for the ultra-relatable storyline. To this day I think Diane Keaton is one of the most beautiful and interesting ladies in Hollywood.

1. New Slack Swing Pants in Khaki (Modcloth) $38
2. The Hillside Polka Dot Tie (Madewell) $98
3. Brompton Waistcoat (AllSaints Spitalfields) £32
4. Knotted Band Wool Fedora (Forever 21) $12
5. Vintage Tennis Racket
6. Sheer Mesh Upper White Shirt (Romwe) $35
7. Liv in Burgunday Fade Sunglasses (Warby Parker) $95

1. London Blazer (NastyGal) $58
2. Blue Flannel Shirt (H&M) $25
3. Thatcher Glasses (Warby Parker) $95
4. Bing Court Cropped Trouser (Farfetch) $193
5. The Denial of Death Paperback (Amazon) $11

1. Silk Gingham Boyshirt (Madewell) $110
2. Shawl Collar Sleeveless Vest (Romwe) $36
3. Cooperative Two-Tone Brogue Skimmer (Urban Outfitters) $29
4. Lightweight Crinkle Scarf (Old Navy) $10
5. Lobster Pendant Necklace (NewLook) £2
6. 35mm Film Camera

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Chicago // A Local Tourist's Guide

I've been very open about my travels to and from Chicago over the past three or four years — and obviously my move here last autumn. I get so many emails and messages from readers asking me what they should do and check out while they're here. It's a bit overwhelming at times, because I want to recommend everything. I love my city. So, finally, I give you this: Mini Penny's favorite Chicago spots. If you have anything you'd like to add, feel free to pop it in the comments! Hopefully this will be a list that grows and changes over the years. Enjoy!

Check 'em out after the jump. (Updated Winter 2015)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Trend // Colorful Liquid Liners

Recently I've been falling deeper and deeper into the hole of colored liquid eye liners. For years I've been a huge fan of the Maybelline Lash Stilleto, but I've recently (and happily) have been branching out. Looking for a way to make your makeup pop? Check these shades out.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Recipe // Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

There was just something about tonight that had me dying for either chocolate chip cookies or cupcakes. Lauren got home from work and we started brainstorming — and our new friend Zac (who is vegan) chimed in that he had some ingredients to give us a hand. I altered my mom's recipe to make these vegan and they turned out so delicious! See the recipe after the jump.

The Blue iPhone

I'm sure some of you remember back in March when I mentioned I had broken my iPhone 4. I suffered through four months of a broken front and back panel (which I admittedly almost got used to!) before finally deciding to have my glass replaced last weekend.

Naturally, being a bit of an Apple nerd, I've always admired the Colorware custom phones and computers and have oogled at the DIY kits found on sites like iFixDirect. Heck, when I saw Little Cheif Honeybee's pink version, I fell in love.

So I opted to check out one of those little hole-in-the-wall "We fix your broken phone" type places. I was a bit skeptical at first, for obvious reason. After working for Apple for two years, I've heard some horror stories of third party repairs. The girl working said that it would either be $90 for the front screen, but if I had both sides replaced, it would be $120 and I could choose whichever color I'd like.


It turned out lovely and is getting lots of compliments. The only downside is that now I don't want to put a case on it, which means I'm most likely going to break it again. Who knows. Once a butterfinger, always a butterfinger!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

What I Wore // Warby Parker Bocce Social

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Yesterday turned out to be a pretty nice day. The weather was humid, but not unbearable, and Lauren, Priya, and I headed to Wicker Park for the WP Bocce Social.

The event was interesting albiet slightly, well, uneventful. We got to try on some frames (and I found a few that I really wanted), but the actual wait to play bocce ball was around an hour. The one thing that turned me off was the fact that they had absolutely no vegetarian food option. I basically saved my appetite for the event and we ended up spending a good two hours on the Big Star patio to get food. But the beer was free and there were a lot of familiar faces, so I really can't complain.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Weekstagram // July 21

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This week has been pretty hectic and with temperatures still high in Chicago, we spent a lot of time indoors. Whew!
  • Finally got a chance to go see To Rome with Love late Sunday night. I'll follow Woody Allen to the edge of the earth, but admittedly didn't like this film whatsoever. Such a disappointment! :(
  • For whatever reason, I thought it appropriate to wear pants to work this week. Just... no.
  • I passed a huge teddy bear with a crushed Bud Light can on a motorcycle while walking to work. Lincoln Park will be Lincoln Park.
  • I got super organized and planned out blog posts for the next two months! I'm so excited!
  • I fell in love with the Eyeko Skinny Liquid liner.
  • Video chats with Kelley B and her Boston Terrier, Cassie, always make me smile. Love those two!
  • Kyle came over and made Dark 'n' Stormys for Lauren and me.
  • Have you had Rocket Sauce at The Wormhole? Do it.
  • Last night Gedi and I passed a building that was half-demolished — so naturally we climbed over all the bricks and found these two signs. It reminded me of all of my Urban Exploration days with Bob (of Idea Attic) and how badly I wish him and I could go on adventures again!
Follow Mini Penny on Instagram @Chaplinnn

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Silver Screen Style // Moonrise Kingdom

It's time to welcome a new feature to Mini Penny Blog! Each Thursday I will be featuring a movie with some "steal their style" type product links! I wanted to go ahead and kick this off with a film I saw in theaters recently that I found intriguing both visually and conceptually. If you haven't had a chance to see Wes Anderson's newest film, Moonrise Kingdom, yet, I suggest you get to it!

1. Mod For Fun Dress (Modcloth) $90
2. Baby's breath or other small white flowers
3. Oryany Tivka Shoulder Bag (Piperlime) $158
4. Bass Starlette Saddle Shoe (Free People) $70
5. American Rag Rosebowl Short (Farfetch) $120
6. Vintage 60s Straw Suitcase (Rokit) £55
7. Herschel Supply Co Survey Backpack (Ubiq) $55
8. Faux Fur Coonskin Cap (Village Hat Shop) $10

1. Unisex Wool Peacoat in Valentine (American Apparel) $184
2. Analog 3-Pack Beanies (Swell) $24
3. Fair Isle Convertible Gloves (ASOS) $17
4. Begley Cedar Tortoise Frames (Warby Parker) $95
5. Sporto Dylan Duck Boots (Zappos) $55

1. Band Collar Single Breasted Cape (SheInside) $57
2. Zodiac Rising Shirt (General Pants) $70
3. Cropped Chino Trousers (Uniqlo) £10

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Best Friends Week

"I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve. Jesus, does anyone?" —Gordie, Stand By Me

Stand By Me was always a staple movie for me growing up (that and The Sandlot). I remember being younger and worrying that at age 12 I would hit my peak of friendships because of this quote — mostly because I thought that hitting my highest point of human relationships at such a young age would be a waste plus the fact that I was an awkward pre-teen who didn't necessarily fall in the "popular" crowd.

Fast forward thirteen years later and I realize how Stephen King's writing for the end of this story was total and complete (pardon my language) bullshit.

I've written in the past about my visits from Ms. Kelley B [1] [2] and Lauren [1] [2] (who now lives here!), and last week had the best late-night surprise text message: Kelley was going to pop visit us for a couple of days.

Monday, July 16, 2012

July Birchbox Review

So after a year of not being subscribed to Birchbox, my first shipment came today. Part of me was anticipating improvement, while the other part of me was a bit wary considering how dissatisfied I was with my previous boxes.

In the end, I'd say I'm split on this box. I love the themed concept (they teamed up with Glamour) of the  give senses — but I'm still divided on my opinion of the products themselves.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Weekstagram // July 14

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I can't believe it's already Saturday again! These Chicago summers fly by. There really is no such thing as too many friends and too much fun!
  • I finally got to try Antique Taco in Wicker Park. I was really disappointed that they had so few vegetarian options, but the Corn off the Cobb Salad and Horchata milkshake were absolutely delightful. It doesn't hurt that the space was cozy and cute. They have really excellent branding in my opinion.
  • After about four months of owning a shattered iPhone, I spoiled myself and got both my front and back glass replaced. Instead of going for the classic black phone, I had it replaced with a really nice blueish-tealish color! Now I can finally use my front facing camera and flash (and see my screen properly!)
  • Did you take advantage of 7-11 day? Free Slurpees!
  • Nice hand-painted type on a metal box at the beach
  • This goofy and adorable pug hung out with me at work just before the start of my long weekend. I have no idea what his name was (he belonged to a customer), but I nicknamed him Smooshie.
  • Tuesday was beach day! 
  • We went to Wicker Park and watched ET: The Extra Terrestrial for Chicago's Movies in the Park series. Such a great night.
  • Returned to my favorite restaurant for the best sandwich on earth — a veggie cemita from Cemitas Puebla!
  • I was so excited to get a late-night phone call from my best pal, Kelley, earlier this week letting me know that she spontaneously bought a bus ticket to Chicago. She was here for just a couple nights and we had a great time hanging out. I have lots of pictures to share — but that's for a totally separate post!
Follow me on Instagram @Chaplinnn

Jouer Cosmetics at Public Hotel

The incredible view from breakfast at the top patio of PUBLIC Hotel
When I used to subscribe to Birchbox in mid-2011, I found very few products that I was excited about. One of the products I received in my September box — Jouer Lip Enhancer — stood out to me as a keeper. This past Thursday I was privileged enough to enjoy breakfast (and an incredible view of the city) with Christina Zilber, founder and creative director for Jouer, and her team at the PUBLIC hotel.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Chicago CND Shellac Event

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I was recently invited to an event for CND Shellac. It wasn't up until I arrived at the event that I realized what I was in for. Most of you know that I almost always have long nails, so strolling into the Waldorf Astoria with bare fingers was a bit nerve racking for me.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Weekstagram // July 7

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Heat wave! Here's how I kept my cool this week with record high temperatures
  • Lauren moved to Chicago from Arizona! BFFs!
  • Gedi gifted me some incredible Acne Papers last weekend. This boy just keeps getting more and more impressive.
  • Coral + cream trimmed platform sandals. So comfy!
  • The Art Institute of Chicago is free the first and second Wednesday of every month! Lauren and I went on the Fourth of July.
  • We snapped some cute Polaroids on the beach before fireworks.
  • Iced soy chai and air conditioning at The Wormhole.
  • Gedi and I hit up the Indiana Dunes yesterday. Little did we know there were rip tide warnings and I have the bruises to prove it. I basically got pummeled by a wave and smashed into the shore. Ow. Otherwise, awesome day.
  • I found my dream home. It's pink.
  • Easily the best thing I've seen all week! "SLOW CAT XING" sign in Indiana. Give it to me!
Follow me on Instagram @Chaplinnn

Friday, July 6, 2012


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I can't even fake it — it's been so miserably hot out the past few days. It seems like everyone is scouring their closets for the lightest and breeziest pieces here in Chicago. When I left for work this morning (at 8am), it was already 90°. EESH.

But I did manage to pick up this adorable Urban Renewal dress the other day and it's a strange shade somewhere between grey and purple. Plus it's light enough to get me through the day better than most garments. The news keeps saying that the heat is going to break — let's keep our fingers crossed!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Red, White, and Lichtenstein

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I have been looking forward to checking out the Roy Lichtenstein exhibit at The Art Institute of Chicago for some time. Since today was a free day (and since Lauren has never been there), we decided to go down today for the Fourth of July. The museum was so busy, but the exhibit was amazing and worth it!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Secret Garden

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Lauren and I both had the day off, and even though it was smoldering outside managed to go out and enjoy the sun a bit. And, as it turns out, Lauren is just lovely at snapping photos! Thanks, girl!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Neon and Navy

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Sunday Funday! Finally, after all of this waiting, Lauren moved to Chicago today! She left the desert to come join us in the midwest and to be my new roommate! We're so excited!

Weekstagram // June 30

As many of you are aware, Instagram has been down and/or has had iffy service over the past couple of days thanks to some storms in Virginia, so I was unable to post this yesterday. My account has come back (sort of? I'm not really sure, it still seems spotty), and I had a super exciting week to share!

  • On Thursday the storms started rolling through the Midwest. I was at the train stop near my house and it was so dark at 11am that the automatic lights kicked on! And the clouds were crazy looking!
  • On Sunday I didn't make it to the Pride Parade, but instead went to see Moonrise Kingdom with Gedi. It was wonderful!
  • I met a fluffy 6-month-old puppy named Leo on Tuesday. My friend Matt has been dog walking this little guy while his owners are at work.
  • The Poshmark event on Thursday was pretty great, and I even got Nate in on the fun.
  • My newest obsession is neon yellow.
  • I spent Tuesday on the beach and *gasp* actually got a bit of a tan!
  • On Thursday I found out that I won a trip to Urban Outfitters home office! Easily the best news of the week.
  • New business cards came in, also. 
  • And Nate picked me up this leopard print iPhone case from J. Crew. I love my Vans case, but it doesn't slide into my pocket well. This J. Crew on is much slimmer... and it's gorgeous.
Follow me on Instagram @chaplinnn

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