Never Met a Stripe I Didn't Like

 J. Crew Factory Dress / J. Crew Factory Sandals / Similar Hat

It's true. I love stripes. Look in my closet and you might say I have an addiction to stripes. If you did, you would not be wrong. 

This dress was the perfect option for sightseeing on our recent trip to Israel. Previously, I packed for practicality, thinking I was being responsible by planning to wear tennis shoes and shorts. I think it was a holdover from college summers spent backpacking around Europe when I literally had to carry everything I brought on my back. Today, I pack whatever is currently on rotation at home with an emphasis on comfy dresses like this one. On this trip, I carried a long scarf with me so that I could cover the rest of my legs whenever we visited religious sites.

Spiritually, it was incredible to be in a place with so much history and religious significance and I hope we get the chance to return to see more of the Middle East.

Source: http://

Palm Trees

Planet Blue Tee / Ray-Bans / Ring c/o Rocksbox

Enter my new favorite t-shirt for summer. Loose, comfortable burnout fabric and palm trees. What more could you want? 

Planet Blue is a local L.A. chain known for their collection of boho goods (think caftans and Free People dresses). Luckily for you, they also sell online. I could blow my whole paycheck on a new summer wardrobe every time I visit, so I try not to visit too much. 

If (when) you order this shirt, size down. It's meant to be loose, but I'm wearing an XS in this picture. 

Summer Solstice

Similar J. Crew Factory Dress / J. Crew Factory Shoes / Rocksbox Bracelet c/o

The last two months have been the most stressful and most incredible of my life. My husband and I purchased and moved into our first home. It's as wonderful and exciting as I expected, but no one prepared me for the stress and emotional exhaustion. And I was EXHAUSTED.

We've been in the house for over a month and are returning to some semblance of normalcy. This weekend in particular felt like we were finally settling in. The family of a dear friend gifted us with their old patio set and we were able to spend the entire summer solstice outdoors doing a combination of yard work, laying in the sun and sharing our first meal together outside. (Thank you Jan!) It was the sort of day I dreamed of when I thought of owning a home. A good reminder to stop running around with a laser focus on getting the house furnished and set up and to start enjoying it just as it is - unfinished and imperfect.

I waited so long to post these pictures, the dress had sold out, but J. Crew Factory is selling another one in the same fabric - just a slightly different silhouette. If you haven't checked out Rocksbox (think Netflix for jewelry) they're offering J. Frances readers one month free when you enter jfrancesxoxo at check out and who doesn't love free stuff?


Traveling with Golden Tote

Golden Tote White Top / Zara Jeans / Madewell Heels / Old Zara Scarf (similar only $14!)

Golden Tote White Top / Old Zara Skirt (similar) / Geography 541 Bracelet

Packing for a 10-day trip abroad, when traveling to two very different climates can be a daunting task. At least that's how it felt as I was preparing for my recent trip to the U.K. and Israel.  

How do you plan outfits for weather ranging from 40 degrees and raining to 80 degrees and hot and dry, and events ranging from chic parties in Tel Aviv to long days of sightseeing around London?  

Here's how:

1. Forget practicality - I used to pack tennis shoes, shorts and tank tops for sightseeing trips. I knew it was the sensible thing to do, but when I would arrive in country and pull out the clothes, I'd realize that I didn't even like the outfit. Now I pack clothes that I love to wear. If I love wearing it at home, I'll love wearing it on my trip and as long as I bring more than high heels, I'll be comfortable.

2. Pack the workhorses - have a skirt that goes with everything? That's what you want when traveling. The white linen top shown above was the perfect piece. I wore it out to three different dinners and events, dressed it up with a skirt and down with jeans.

3. Shop BEFORE your trip - if you're at all like me, your favorite piece of clothing is the most recent thing you purchased. Rather than saving all your shopping for your trip, pick up a few things ahead of time. You'll love the new pieces and won't tire of something you wear two or three times. 

Luckily for me, I found out about Golden Tote a couple of weeks before my trip and decided to try their personal styling service. Have you heard about these guys? It's an unbelievable service. You sign up online (you can do so here), fill out an individual style profile, pick one to two items that you know you want and Golden Tote puts together a grab bag of additional items for you based on your profile. You can choose a tote with 2 - 3 items for $49 (tote is around a $200 value) or 5 - 7 items for $149 (tote is up to $600 in value).

I've always been nervous to try a styling service because my body is not exactly a standard shape. Tiny on top and really curvy on the bottom, it can be a nightmare to find things that fit. Golden Tote nailed it with my bag. I got the small tote this time around to get my feet wet, but will DEFINITELY be getting the larger tote the next time I order. It's just so much fun being surprised with items picked just for you

I selected the white linen top shown above and let Golden Tote do the rest. They sent me the checkered fit and flare dress which perfectly accentuated my little waist while not drawing too much attention to my hips and I added on this black maxi that ended up being the second workhorse of my trip keep (more on that dress next week).

Both the top and the dresses packed easily and added enough variety to my wardrobe to keep me from tiring of my options. Also, given that GT lets you add on items to your tote at a discounted rate (my maxi ended up being only an additional $35), I got two dresses (each with their own belt) and a white linen blouse for well under $100 which left me enough money to still do some shopping on my trip. That's what I call winning.