DAY TRIPPIN’

IMG_7375One of the many perks of living in the greater Los Angeles area is that the fabulous Palm Springs is within day trip distance. A little post Birthday surprise had me browsing vintage shops and taking in the dessert sun on Sunday. What better place to wear wide leg palm print pants with a cropped knit tank and my new vintage purse?  I love how effortless and classic this look is and as a perk it was perfectly comfortable for the car ride. Wide leg pants worn with a pair of tall heels are a timeless pairing that lengthen the appearance and adding a crop top enhances the illusion. I am a huge fan of summer sweaters.  They add texture and a touch of luxury.  My suede Stuart Weitzman so thoughtfully selected for me by my dear friend Kristen gives that hint of vintage I love so deeply and that no Eleni outfit is complete without.
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ZION

IMG_7047So besides shooting vintage gowns in Zion Eloy and I hiked… a lot.  We did as much hiking as our bodies and sense of fear would allow in two days. Zion is nothing short of stunning.   Still emerald reflecting pools, misty waterfalls, and sheer rock faces surrounding peaceful canyons make Zion a retreat that showcases both the beauty and power of nature.  Eloy and I love to hike but up until Zion our hikes have been safe with relatively little opportunity for danger. Starting out on some of the more advanced trails in Zion you get the sense that you better, quite literally, watch your step otherwise there could be fatal consequences. It’s a different level of hiking.  The place and the threats it poses take a hike from a outdoor exercise session to a spiritual experience. On the recommendation of one of our more adventurous friends, Ignacio, we attempted to conquer Angels Landing.  We were doing great physically but when we approached the last assent to the platform we had to turn back.  Now keep in mind that we had just zip lined in the jungle two weeks earlier when I tell you that we turned back from Angels Landing out of fear.  Angels Landing is aptly named, a tall thin peak with straight cliff face on either side.  The trail to the top platform is no more than 2 feet wide and your companion as you ascend is a thick chain fixed to the side of the cliff.  Don’t worry, only 7 people have died on this hike… yeah.  If you weren’t afraid of heights before you may find that Angels Landing will change your mind.  Even the steady stream of hikers coming back triumphant and very much alive wouldn’t convince us, we had too much to lose so back down we went. We were happy to make it up as far as we did and that we lived to enjoy more beautiful hikes in the area.

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DESERT ROSE

 

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I am grateful for two things as I start this post today: 1. A patient partner that puts up with me wanting to take pictures of gowns in less than convenient times and places and 2. Living in the Southwest in close proximity to gorgeous landscapes.  Still high off of our Costa Rica trip Eloy and I quickly looked for our next destination.  A holiday weekend and Valentine’s Day were excuse enough so we found ourselves Zion bound not entirely knowing what to expect.  I purchased this 40′s silk chiffon gown several months ago and I hadn’t been presented with what I felt was the right situation to photograph it.  I usually try to make some type of point or put together an outfit with an unexpected twist and this dress was challenging my standard mode of operation.  I brought it along thinking that anything looks good in the desert and that I had nothing to lose.  Driving into Zion with the sun coming up, the crisp morning air moving through the waves of my dress, and my favorite boucle shawl I knitted last year wrapped around my shoulders I could tell… there could be magic in these photos.  Eloy navigated the winding road as we looked for the perfect spot. We quickly pulled off to park by a hillside and 15 minutes later we had photos that I was really excited about.  Lately I have been a bit awkward when it comes to outfit posts since I am a bit out of practice and have allowed myself a few too many sweets over the hollidays but being in that place and feeling it’s energy  I was able to forget my inhibitions.  It was just me and Eloy, the dress, and the natural beauty of Zion.  There is no point or pitch here.  The dress is not inexpensive or trendy, I didn’t make an offbeat outfit by pairing it with something quirky, it doesn’t go with the location in any meaningful way. It’s not practical or versatile. It’s just because… that’s all.

Gown: Butch Wax Vintage
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PURA VIDA: ADVENTURE COSTA RICA

IMG_65912015 has started out as a whirlwind, which is my excuse for waiting so long to post about our trip to Costa Rica in late January.  It seems like life gets busier with every passing day but I guess that’s what happens when you travel more often so I am not complaining. You may have recognized a pattern with Eloy and I… we love to travel. Near or far, a day trip or a two week get-away, we love experiencing new places and all they have to offer.  We planned our 6 days in Costa Rica packed full of activities and sight seeing.  In that time we managed to take a road trip to Poas Volcano (although it was too cloudy to see), visit the handy craft village of Sarchi, zip line, hike to waterfalls, paddle board in the mangroves, kayak and snorkel, hike the national park, and attend the wedding that was the reason we came to Costa Rica.  After one of our busy days Eloy and I discussed over coconut flan and coffees whether or not we are too ambitious when it comes to our vacations.  Of course our conclusion was a unanimous no.  I suppose the typical idea of going on a vacation is to relax and the way we vacation is not the sit on the beach/by the pool with a cocktail fantasy.  We are fortunate enough to live in Southern California, which offers plenty of opportunities for pools and beaches and drinks. Not that we are enjoying the beach or a pool everyday here (far from it) but if we wanted to we could easily get our fix.  It’s true not all pools or beaches are alike or created equal for that matter, but if you have been to a number of either… it is safe to say that you have fully had the experience.  When traveling somewhere new, we want to be immersed in the best of what that place has to offer.  We want to eat the local food and shop at the local markets.  We want to feel like we are actually visiting that specific place.  We don’t usually stay in resorts, we opt for locally owned boutique hotels.  We ask for advice from the locals on what to do and where to eat.  Happily we have found that people are not only kind but excited to share what they know with us and because of this we make friends and have one-of-a-kind experiences.  Some of our experiences pull us out of our comfort zone (zip lining) but in the end they are always worth it.  Some of the best food we have eaten around the world was from the local hole-in-the-wall, cart on the sidewalk, or jungle hut.  Being more active and seeking more immersive experiences makes a vacation personal and special. Our adventures help us fall in love with every place we visit, and we definitely took home a piece of Costa Rica in our hearts. It’s safe to say we aren’t changing our ways any time soon. Pura Vida.Canopy-Safari-Quepos-(20)IMG_6277IMG_6432IMG_4661IMG_6446IMG_4426IMG_6347IMG_4601 IMG_4561IMG_4637IMG_4436IMG_6509IMG_6498Canopy-Safari-Quepos-(79) Canopy-Safari-Quepos-(66)IMG_6348IMG_6565IMG_4433IMG_6435Canopy-Safari-Quepos-(46)IMG_6529IMG_6286IMG_6304IMG_4536

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