Thursday, February 26, 2015

On My Radar: Dresses

I've been shopping for some new dresses lately, and here are some of my favorites! Loving all of these colors--but ya can never go wrong with a LBD...let's be real.  

Happy Shopping!

Click on the item in the interactive image above to be redirected to the product link or shop below!

Photo Tip Thursday: A Camera Buyer's Guide

Grace and I always get a lot of questions asking what kind of equipment we use.  I realized the other day that I did a lens buyer's guide {here} a while back, but I've never done a guide on the most fundamental piece of equipment, the camera.  So this week's photo tip will be a roundup of some of the best, and most affordable cameras out there that will serve you well for all of your fashion blogging needs.

I'm going to break this down into three categories: entry level/beginner cameras, hobbyist/semi-professional cameras, and high end/professional cameras. I'll discuss some models from each of the main manufacturers and give some pros and cons on them as well.  The cameras I have listed in bold are my personal favorites.

1. Entry level/beginner cameras:

This class of cameras is by far the most affordable.  They can readily be used for fashion blogging, but they are slightly limited in some certain circumstances.  The are often made out of plastic and are in most cases, not weather sealed, making them sometimes feel cheap and fragile.  Secondly, they often suffer from poor low light performance and also, when it comes to autofocus accuracy, they aren't the greatest. I don't want you to think these aren't any good by any means, but you'll have to work a bit harder to get the shot you want. There are several great contenders though, here's a few:

Canon Rebel T3i:  This is Canon's entry level camera.  I owned one of these way back when and I can say that I really enjoyed it.  It has all of the manual mode features that you'll need to take great outfit photos.  It's only drawback is limited autofocus accuracy and poor low light performance.

Nikon D3300:  This camera is the price of the Canon Rebel T3i but also has the option to add a WiFi adapter for smartphone control capability.  It also has a 24MP sensor compared to the 18MP sensor on the Canon.

Canon T6i:  This is basically the step up from the T3i.  The main difference is that this has built in WiFi so that you can remotely shoot and download pictures with your phone.  If you have the extra cash laying around, I'd recommend this over the T3i.  Having the ability to download pictures straight to your phone is an amazing capability.  Also, the T6i has 19 cross-type AF points, giving it a leg up over the Nikon D5500.

Nikon D5500:  Similar in price and function to the T6i, the D5500 features built in WiFi.  However, due to the T6i having all cross-type AF sensors, I'd have the T6i over this.

2. Hobbyist/semi-professional cameras:

These cameras are much more sturdily built than the entry level cameras, they often have much better autofocus capabilities and low light performance than the entry level cameras.

Canon 60D:  This is the camera Grace and I started out with.  It was a good camera overall but it did suffer from some issues with autofocus accuracy, especially when using really large apertures.  Often times, I didn't feel comfortable shooting at apertures larger than f/2.8 because the autofocus using the outer focus points was so inaccurate. It is nice that the screen pops out and swivels though.

Nikon D7000:  This is the Nikon equivalent of the 60D.  

Canon 70D:  This camera has built in WiFi and 19 cross-type {this means they're super accurate} AF points.  If you have the extra cash, definitely get this over the 60D.

Nikon D610:  Boasting 39 selectable AF points, this camera is very well suited to fashion photography.  However it is significantly more expensive than the other cameras in this class, and at this price, it's extremely disappointing that there isn't any built in WiFi.  An adapter is available for purchase separately though. 

3. High end/professional cameras:

These cameras are incredibly sturdy, often being built with metal bodies and coated with very durable rubber compounds.  Many are weather sealed and meant to stand up to anything thrown at them.  These cameras have the highest megapixel count, are specialized to perform incredibly well even in very low light situations and have the most customizability.  The one drawback to the professional level cameras though is that they often don't come with a built in flash which means that you'll have to purchase an external one if you need extra light.

Canon 6D:  This is the camera that I own, and I absolutely love it.  It has built in WiFi meaning that you can control and remotely shoot from your mobile phone using an app, as well as download pictures from the camera straight from your phone.  Autofocus accuracy {even with the outer points} is excellent, although the only drawback is that it only has 11 of them.  For a higher end camera, you'd expect it to have more.  Despite this minor drawback, I highly recommend this camera, especially for it's incredible low light capabilities.

Nikon D750:  For the price tag, I'd expect a lot more of this camera.  It's much more expensive than the 6D, yet doesn't have that many more megapixels {24MP to be exact}.  The D750 also pales in comparison to the low light capabilities of the 6D as well, boasting a maximum ISO of 52,000 ISO compared to the 6D's 104,200 ISO.  The D750 does come with built in WiFi and a flip out LCD screen.

Canon 5DS:  This puppy is brand spankin' new and it sounds incredible.  It's got 52 focus points, a 50MP {no that's not a typo} sensor and all kinds of other crazy features.  It's also ridiculously expensive though, and sadly for its nearly $4000 price tag, it doesn't even have WiFi which is a bit of a let down.  Still though, if you have the money and you want a serious camera that can take some amazing photos, this is the one that I'd recommend.  I'd literally {ok maybe not literally} kill for 52 focus points.

Nikon D810A:  This camera was specifically designed for astrophotography.  You're probably asking yourself, "What the hell does that have to do with fashion blogging Andrew?" Well all cameras built for astrophotography have INCREDIBLE low light performance.  We're talking you could shoot at 12,800 ISO and you'd still probably wouldn't see too much noise in your photos.  Oh and the 36MP sensor is a pretty nice addition too.

I hope this guide has helped, thanks for reading!


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

All In One

Jeans: Banana Republic {old; similar} | Sweater: Ann Taylor | Tote: Tory Burch {similar cognac one here} | Heels: Maiden Lane {sold out; similar} | Watch: Michael Kors | Ring: c/o Kendra Scott | Sunnies: Ray Ban | Earrings: c/o BaubleBar | Lips: MAC 'Honey Love' w/ 'Sugarrimed'
I was skeptical when buying this sweater, because the shirt and the sweater are 'built-in'.  Although it makes things quite convenient and a whole lot easier, I already tend to layer button downs under sweaters.  So, I was worried that this would be no different.  Regardless, I decided to go with it, and I'm so glad I did.  It's a sweater that is perfect for spring, because it's not as heavy as if you were to layer a full button down underneath a sweater. You don't have to constantly 'readjust' every time you sit down, etc., which is also a nice plus.  It's a light sweater that would kill it during the spring time, so this one is definitely sticking around in my closet.

Do y'all prefer layering yourselves or getting all-in-one sweaters like this one? For me, I think it depends on the season! 

Tuesday, February 24, 2015


Jeans: c/o James Jeans | Top: Ann Taylor | Sweater: c/o SheInside | Shoes: Steve Madden {on sale} | Clutch: Clare V | Watch: Michael Kors | Sunnies: Karen Walker | Earrings: Givenchy | Necklace: c/o Moon & Lola | Lips: MAC 'Ruby Woo'
I'm so sad these pumps are sold out in a majority of places.  However, I found them available over here with a few sizes left, so make sure to snag a pair if you're looking for the perfect nude pump! I'm also really loving the chartreuse color of this cardigan {especially paired with navy & white stripes}.  It's definitely not warm outside--but this bright color is making me a bit more hopeful of warmer temps!

It's always around this time of the year where I get really antsy with the seasons.  All of these fabulous spring clothes that are coming out {with tons of bright colors} are making me want spring stat, but the freezing temps are telling me that it's going to be quite awhile until I put my heavy coats away.  So, here's to hoping that spring will hurry on up already!

Thanks for stoppin' by!

Monday, February 23, 2015

Stripes + Poms

Jeans: Banana Republic {old; similar} | Shirt: Ann Taylor | Scarf: Ann Taylor | Clutch: c/o Ann Taylor | Heels: Maiden Lane {sold out; similar} | Watch: Michael Kors | Ring: c/o Kendra Scott | Sunnies: Ray Ban | Earrings: c/o BaubleBar | Lips: MAC 'Honey Love' w/ 'Sugarrimed'
The moment I saw this scarf, I knew I had to have it.  So I figured I would wear my favorite combo: some stripes on stripes.  You can never go wrong with that, right? It would be a lie if I said this is the first time I've worn this outfit.  I just love the details on this scarf, and it works so well with a stripe tee!  If y'all follow me on Instagram, you probably noticed that I wore this same outfit with some chucks {these are my favorite ones, because they're slip on}.  Anyways, if you're looking for a good stripe tee, then make sure to snag one of these here.  It comes in three colors, and all of them have an easy-to-access spot right in my closet, since I wear them so often!

Happy Monday!

Friday, February 20, 2015

Patterned & Pink

Dress: Eliza J {less expensive style here} | Shirt: J.Crew {so old; similar here, here, & here} | Tote: Tory Burch | Shoes: Maiden Lane {old; similar} | Necklace: c/o Stella & Dot {extremely similar here} | Earrings: Givenchy | Ring: c/o Kendra Scott | Sunnies: Karen Walker | Lips: MAC 'Honey Love' w/ 'Sugarrimed' Gloss
First off, I'm totally in love with this dress, probably because it involves my favorite pattern and it's black, white, and pink.  If y'all took a look at my closet, you would not be surprised by how many striped items I have.  I clearly have no shame in it though, because I keep buying stripes.  If you're loving this dress, but not loving the price, then here's a less expensive option here!

This shirt was probably one of my favorite purchases from J.Crew, but unfortunately, it's from two years ago.  I don't think they even came out with a pink factory version, just the black & white.  I can't seem to give this blouse up because it's perfect to me.  Random thought: if I were a shirt, I would be this one.  Most definitely.  {Side note: I'm pretty sure that's what I said about a drink I tried last week--it. was. phenomenal. It had raspberry and lychee puree!}. Anyways, I found a few similar shirt options: here, here, here, and this one is a splurge.  

Hopefully, everyone is having a fabulous Friday! 

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Warm It Up

Today was so below 5 degrees cold.  So, naturally, I've been thinking of warmer weather ALL DAY LONG.  As most of y'all know, I'm a grad student, so this is officially my last spring break.  Last year when I was a senior, I was on my co-op, so I didn't get a spring break (that was quite the bitter taste of the real world).  Sooo technically, this spring break can make up for last year's.  Am I right or am I right? A few of my girlfriends and I are heading down south to Ft. Lauderdale for a little bit.  My friend is originally from there, so we're just staying at her place and having a chill week full of margaritas and pool time.  I can't wait for it to get here already, so I've compiled some warm weather gear above to help me get ready for it! {Expect a few of these types of posts throughout the next few weeks as I try to snag some goodies for the beach.}

Click on the item in the interactive image above to be redirected to the product link OR shop the items below! 

Photo Tip Thursday: A Guide to Apertures

For this week's Photo Tip Thursday, I thought I'd make a comprehensive guide of all of the different types of shots I take when Grace and I go out for a shoot, i.e. which apertures I use and where I focus to ensure that the photos turn out properly.  The photos below will have an overlay representing the focus points within the camera viewfinder.  The focus point in red is the one that I'm using to focus with in each of the photos. Each photo will also show the f/stop {or f/stops} that I typically use for each particular type of shot.

1. The full body shot:

2. The walking shot:

3. The half up shot:

4. The torso shot:

5. The shoes shot:

6. The necklace/earrings shot:

Here's some links to some additional info in some of my previous posts that covers shooting with really large apertures, as well as selecting focus points that'll help you make the get the most out of each shot. I hope this helps!

Thanks for reading!


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