Blue Buffalo Check

blue-buffalo-check-1 blue-buffalo-check-2 blue-buffalo-check-3 blue-buffalo-check-5 blue-buffalo-check-6 blue-buffalo-check-7 blue-buffalo-check-8Dress: Target (old) // Jacket: Zara (old, but similar here) // Fur Stole: vintage // Bag: Kate Spade (similar) // Sunglasses: Prada // Necklace: 14th & Union (similar) // Shoes: Aldo (similar)

No pattern feels quite so autumnal as buffalo check. Although Paul Bunyan wore his in red, I prefer mine reimagined in colors like cobalt blue, as seen above, and paired with luxe elements like leather and fur. Somehow, until recently, I didn’t know the name for this pattern. I suppose I thought it was just a large-scale gingham. But once I went down the Google rabbit hole in search of information about this bold, beloved pattern, I discovered much more than its name.

You know the original Hudson’s Bay point blankets? The ones knocked off by Pendleton and currently enjoying a moment in the interior design spotlight? Well, those blankets were brought to the New World in the 18th and 19th centuries to trade with Native Americans for fur pelts. The natives, and traders, fashioned the thick wool blankets into coats designed to protect them from the cold, wet Canadian winters.

Fast forward a few years, and Hudson’s Bay Company decides to make a lighter-weight version of their sought-after blankets. This thinner version was printed with red and black stripes to form the buffalo check. Many men in the Northwest opted to wear jackets made from the buffalo check blankets, and they spread across the country with the logging industry; this is where we get the image of Paul Bunyan in a buffalo check flannel. And, after my history lesson, I feel my choice of fur stole was not only sartorially sound, it was (somewhat) inspired by history?

Autumn in Oxfords

stripes-and-leaves-5stripes-and-leaves-3stripes-and-leaves-6stripes-and-leaves-2stripes-and-leaves-4stripes-and-leaves-1Shoes: Etienne Aigner // Top: Zara // Jeans: Old Navy // Scarf: Therapy // Bracelets: Forever 21 (old)

I’ve found that moving does two things for your closet: it forces you to jettison everything you couldn’t possibly do without and it re-introduces you to items purchased long ago that were gradually hidden by your everyday go-tos. These cognac oxfords were just such a find.

I love the menswear detailing set on a ladylike stacked heel. The rich chestnut leather plays perfectly with the shades of autumn and provides a warm anchor for this fall-inspired outfit. When temperatures start dropping, I tend to add a scarf to just about every look, and I especially love the interplay of this woolen big-weave infinity scarf with classic breton stripes and bookworm-ish oxfords. Everything about this outfit makes me feel cozy, and that’s what makes it the perfect autumnal uniform.

Germany + Austria

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What do you call it when six girlfriends, a pair of parents, and a younger brother spend nine days touring Germany and Austria together? #Hofftoberfest!

Just in case you didn’t follow along with our hashtag, here’s a photo recap of our amazing trip. We started with a multi-day tour of the tents in Munich for the first weekend of Oktoberfest, and then hopped on a train to the picturesque Prien am Chiemsee. After a  two-Michelin-star meal and some sailing around the Bavarian lake, it was back on the train for our trip across the border to Austria.

Salzburg was, without a doubt, my favorite part of the trip. It served as the setting for The Sound of Music and is just bursting with Austrian charm—think winding cobblestone streets with pastel row houses teetering above you on either side; the scent of myriad sausages wafting across town squares as the Alps playing hide-and-go-seek with the clouds in the background; Mozart’s face festooned from almost every shop window you pass. I loved it.

From there it was just another short train ride to Stuttgart, also known as the cheese spaetzle capital of my heart. Clearly calories were of no concern on this trip, and of all the hearty offerings I sampled, kaesespaetzle was my very favorite (it’s basically German mac and cheese with caramelized onions on top). Be still my heart.

We ended our trip the way we began it—in a beer tent—and then headed home ten pounds heavier (due to all the pretzels) and happier (due to all the beer). Salzburg, I hope to see you soon.