Trade in tradition for a bachelorette party that tunes in to your boho spirit as well as the four elements.Read More
The Wanderful Girl
The “Wanderful Girl” is a modern bohemian. She’s a nomadic bon vivant collecting perspective and style inspiration around the globe. - from "Wanderful: The Modern Bohemian's Guide to Traveling in Style."
Today's featured girl personifies the digital Glenda the good witch, with a little femme fatale twist. Her online publication covers everything from new age philosophies and stylish wanderings to stories about how women and girls can (and are changing) the world. She dives into the taboo on occasion and shares regular stories about how to heal yourself naturally ... and everything she does is with a serious cool girl vibe. After re-reading her interview as I prepared to post this I was seriously in tears.... I absolute adore her and everything thing she stands for. Besides, from one witchy woman romance lover to another, she's clearly a Oui We soul sista.
p.s. if you really want to do Cyber Monday right - shop artists, designers and magic makers: AND if you really want to do a travel wardrobe right, everything in Michaela's collection is perfection.
Interview: Michaela d'Artois
Andi for Oui We: We’ve been inspired by the mantra of Vérité (WELCOME HOME, FREE THINKING WOMAN. EMPOWER YOUR STYLE & LIBERATE YOUR MIND. #FEMMESOFVERITE) since the first moment we were introduced to you through our mutual friend (and serious babe Allister Ann).
Vérité’s philosophy of empowering women and creating community has been your core mission before the women’s movement took center stage this year, tell us about the background of the publication, and how it all came to be.
Michaela: I think I was just sensing a movement was upon us when I started Vérité in 2015. I mean I didn’t invent the women’s movement by any means but I really wanted to open a conversation to girls about empowering each other to pursue any kind of lifestyle they wanted! It all started when I was working in house at a magazine and realized we weren’t giving girls the right materials to educate, and empower their life choices. We were only feeding the feeling of inadequacy. So I flipped open my laptop, bought a web domain and got to work. It’s still very much a work in progress, but I’m learning things right alongside our readers!
AE: You’re the creative director, writer, photographer and often the star of Vérité features too - how do you do it all?
MD: Well, I have some really wonderful contributors and endless amounts of support from my loved ones who I couldn’t do it without. We launched a shopping portion to the site last January so that’s been a whole other beast to tame but I really enjoy doing this and I feel very privileged that all the tasks on my to-do list are things I am really passionate about! But speaking of to-do lists, I wouldn’t be able to do it without those either — they keep me sane and accountable!
AE: After spending these past 2 years traveling America for Wanderful, our 2018 will be dedicated to exploring international destinations - and you’ve covered sooo many, let’s talk about your life as a traveler. I want all your recommendations!
MD: Oooh, this is my favorite topic to cover. I love being able to give people recommendations more than anything! My mom is actually an international flight attendant so I sort of had this nomad blood in me from the very beginning — our whole family is like this. I’ve gone months living out of my duffle bag. It is really important to me to feel a sense of freedom in my work and my life, and travel has been my best form of education! My recommendation to be able to live a travel based life is to say “yes!” - move the life stuff around and make time for it. This is the advice I give all my girlfriends: you will never regret taking that trip, maybe spending a bit of that savings to go, but you will definitely regret not going.
My best destination recs would be Morocco, and the Amalfi Coast. Morocco really fed my soul with their food, colors, and textiles. I felt like I had made that place up in my head! Amalfi is a classic, plus I fell in love there so it’s really dear to my heart!
AE: What was the earliest trip that inspired you?
MD: When I was little we used to go to Mexico every winter (I grew up in Canada so it was a natural migration). Much like Morocco, the festiveness of the culture really stuck with me. Also this is where I cultivated a strong connection to the ocean. It was this lush, exotic place with amazingly welcoming people that really stuck with me and to this day.
AE: What cheats do you have for looking good while spending days traveling?
MD: Don’t set people’s expectations high to begin with? Just kidding! Like I said I travel really light no matter how long I’m gone (I only just recently invested in luggage with wheels). I hate checking a bag, and you never know what kind of train, bumpy plane, or boat you might have to toss your bag on to! To do so, I’ve created sort of a capsule wardrobe that can go from day to night, and place to place, this wardrobe is essentially what the Vérité shop is made up of! Aside from my day-to-day shoes (slip ons are best for travel days and TSA), I only bring one pair of Prada heels that I always know will be comfortable and look chic! And I forego products except an SPF, night cream, and sea salt spray (I like to see what local specialty products I can stock up on). Oh, and I almost only wear black — that way everything always matches!
AE: Tell us about a person you met on your travels that you know you’ll never forget?
MD: That’s a loaded question! I actually met my boyfriend on a blind date in the JFK airport to go to Italy together. Yes, we are both total crazy people. Luckily for us it worked out, and I wouldn’t be able to forget him if I tried because two years later we live together in LA.
AE: What’s one clothing item you always take with you on your travels?
MD: Those trusty Prada shoes. They have a chunky heel so I’ve done everything in them, including bike around cobblestone streets!
AE: Favorite souvenir?
MD: Boyfriend? Haha… I think probably my photos.
AE: You write odes to self love, share insta tarot readings & offer a guide to feng shui-ing your bedroom - we’re obsessed with allll of this — how did you get started on this path to mysticism, and even mysticism with a romantic twist?
MD: Actually I’ve always been pretty witchy. Probably another family heirloom. I’ve always turned to my pantry before the Doctor to cure something, or find a remedy, and it extends into my views on spirituality as well. I guess it’s just part of my philosophical journey to attaching meaning to life. There are elements all around us that I don’t think you can write off as “hippie shit,” it’s just way too real! Our periods being synched to the moon for example! I’ve always felt a crazy attachment to the moon to the point of worship, now it all makes sense! Things like Tarot, and mysticism are just ways to connect back to these ancient rituals and learn from those who studied spirituality before us.
In our content it’s just another way for us to open the conversation and say “Hey, maybe what your parents believed in isn’t right for you and that’s ok” In regards to the self love part: who is better to worship than yourself? We focus so much of our time as mankind dedicating to these higher powers, we forget how amazing we are, and it makes us feel insignificant when we can’t part the sea with our bare hands! As for the romantic twist — I can literally romanticize anything… I cry in Subaru commercials.
AE: For someone interested in becoming more involved in a mystical life, how do you suggest they begin?
MD: I’m definitely not an expert but I think giving yourself space to feel out what’s right for you is the best place to start. I wasn’t raised with one set religion so I feel like I had the freedom for a young age to figure out what felt right for me. Mine all kind of started with these moon bathing ceremonies that I do on my own every full moon. It’s just time for me to take some quiet moments, take note of what I’m grateful for, and say thank you. Then I realized this was my version of worship and it grew from there based in the natural world. This all led to me creating tiny altars around my house that are dedicated to nature and the divine feminine (possibly one in the same) — I put crystals, little notes, and fresh flowers on them.
Once I realized how much magic the world can give us, I researched deeper and found Aromatherapy, Ayurvedic Medicine, and Meditation — all practices rooted in Earth. Okay… I need to stop myself now I’m starting to sound like I drink my own pee! Just like any kind of belief, it’s not right for everyone and no, I can’t tell you that Tarot works but those cards have always set me on the right path!
AE: We’ve just returned from Mallorca, and you have a swimsuit named after the island(!) - tell us about the Vérité collection.
MD: Stop, you should have packed me in your suitcase! Yes, we do have The Mallorca Bikini! The collection is essentially just my wardrobe, online, for sale. I was always getting asked how I travelled so light, or how I always had such a strong sense of personal style, and the secret’s in simplicity. So I put it online! Everything right now is under $100, and they are just good staples. I wanted our shoppers to know it’s not necessarily about buying the most expensive thing, or shopping every trend every season but just having curated basics that could literally take us everywhere!
AE: The line seems to have a bit of a rebellious vibe, tell us something bad you did growing up that your parents never caught you doing?
MD: I mean they probably already know this by now but I used to have a fake ID that said I was 26 when I was like 16 that I would use to go clubbing. When boys would hit on me I would be like, “I’m almost 30, I could be your mom!” and show them my ID.
AE: What’s on your favorites list:
The book on your nightstand: The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran, it’s my favorite book and my mom just gifted me a beautiful copy so I’ve been re-reading it.
Camera you shoot blog or insta photos with: Fujifilm X30 or iPhone 8
The app you can’t live without: The Podcasts app!
An object or charm you keep with you? A ring that’s been passed down to me
A film quote that inspires you? “When we talked, I talked about me, you talked about you, when we should have talked about each other” from Godard’s Breathless.
The drink you order when on a date? / when out with your girlfriends? An extra dirty martini with extra olives.
AE: Lastly: tell us about a moment you knew that magic was real.
MD: I think when the things I had daydreamed about when I was little started to come to life — but I think these days we call that Manifesting.
AE: Anything else you want to share?!
MD: This is literally the most fun interview I’ve ever done!
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This feature has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #DotComDIY #CollectiveBias
You know how you can just feel the fall coming? Even when it's still warm, and you're sure summer will never leave you... and then slowly, those blue-sky early-September days give just a hint of what's to come. There's a subtle breeze and all of a sudden it's time to get outside and feel that autumn euphoria. Of course, around here the only way to celebrate the change of season is with a road trip! Windows down drives to find a place where the mountain air gives you that little shiver of excitement for cooler weather.
This list is all the necessities to build your own road trip car care kit (right in time for those steep mountain drives and hilly terrains you'll experience on those upcoming fall travels!) Plus, as a girl who travels with her touring musician partner often, I've got a special concert giveaway at the close of the post! (hint, hint, my favorite music video ever is November Rain... can you guess what the giveaway is?!)
Read on for more, and at the close of the post learn all about why Pennzoil is my oil of choice.
Road Trip Car Care Checklist
- Paper Maps
- Motor Oil
- Jumper Cables
- Tire Patch Kit
- Water Jug
- First Aid Kit
- Work Gloves
- Bungee Cords & Zip Ties
- Flashlight / Batteries
- Rain Poncho
- Alcohol Wipes
- Utility Knife
The fabulous thing about this list, truly truly, you guys - is that it's all available for online ordering. We get our cars serviced at our local Walmart, and they've made serious improvements in their online shopping experience lately. Pickup options now include (1) delivery, (2) in-store pickup and (3) curbside pickup. I, for one, NEVER ever want to go brave the checkout line, so ordering online is my go-to. On those days I realize I forgot that one thing that I just can't travel without I chose the curb-side assistance. You just provide your name and the time you'll be there to pick it up, and a Walmart employee will bring your items to you. 🙌🏽
Keep reading to learn about my oil of choice and then find the details on that contest I mentioned above (have you guessed what it is yet?!)
More about Pennzoil:
Pennzoil High Mileage – This is what we choose for Ben's SUV, it's for vehicles with 75K+ miles (and we put tons of miles on that car). We also buy the Pennzoil Platinum Full Synthetic High Mileage for my car (it's just approaching the 75k mark. This product includes a revolutionary process that converts natural gas into pure synthetic base oil. Combining it with high performance additives means it's proven to deliver less oil burn off than conventional motor oils made from crude oil (and that's important to me!). It keeps pistons up to 20% cleaner than the toughest industry standards to help keep the engines running clean and performing strong. These oils are made with the mission of keeping engines running clean and going strong.
Okay! Now about that contest!
You'll also receive $10 Ticketmaster Ticket Cash with the purchase any 2 qualifying Pennzoil Motor oil (in-store or online) by uploading your receipt.
I can't wait to see where you all are traveling this fall, be sure to keep tagging me when you're sharing on insta! #AWanderfulLife! And keep following along, I've got lots of fun adventures to share with you guys this fall!
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A note from Andi:
Earlier this year I had an opportunity to travel to Fairhope, AL on a bit of a whim. I'd been writing a bit about solo travel and intended to take a drive to a new place to spend a little more time out on my own; as soon as the plan was made, however I was invited to cover a festival further down on the Alabama coast. I've gotten pretty good at going with the flow so I called my sister, invited her to meet me, and what started as a solo road trip turned into something seriously special.
Chelle and I stayed for the weekend at the Seaglass Inn. The place drips with relaxation. Deb, the Proprietor, has considered every detail from the luxurious linens to the locally made essential oil bath bombs. The Inn, a historically registered Mission style cottage, is on the bluff by the Mobile Bay and is perhaps one of the dreamiest b&b's anywhere. Each morning Deb prepared a breakfast full of local ingredients and in the evenings we enjoyed wine and cheese followed by steam baths and a retreat style soaking tub.
Susanna's hometown is Fairhope, AL, so of course I had to ask her for the full list of her favorite places! Between The Seaglass Inn and Susanna's recommendations below, when it's time for your next solo getaway, a weekend with your best girls, or even if you're planning a romantic weekend trip, Fairhope should be high on your list!
Enjoy Susanna's guide below!
Susanna's Guide to Fairhope, AL
Sometimes you have to step away from home to realize how beautiful it truly is. While I always knew Fairhope, AL was something special (a town that was founded by nudists, artists, and all around free spirits), I never really saw the beauty and particular charm until I came back as an adult with a fresh view. So if you’re visiting for the first time, or interested in taking a trip to an alluring little city on the bay, let me share a few must see spots us locals think you should put on your list.
The French Quarter:
Yes, we have our very own teeny tiny French Quarter that must be visited. Nestled between shops, a small cobblestone path leads back to a New Orleans-style courtyard filled with unique shops and savory dining spots. At the super popular Panini Pete's, people love to sit outside by the large fountain listening to New Orleans' jazz and eating some of Pete's delicious beignets (which I may be biased, but they're some of the best I've had). Another shop inside is The Bay Candle, with hand poured candles that are inspired by different areas of the city. Orange Street Pier, which smells exactly like oranges, and Fairhope Float, which is the best float found at Mr. Gene's Beans, are two of the most amazing candles you’ll ever purchase!
Mr. Gene's Beans:
This ice cream and candy shop has been around as long as I can remember. It used to be the place we would love to go to as kids, and I still go there whenever I'm in town. A small white cottage in the middle of downtown, this has always been a favorite place of the locals. Ice cream, candy, coffee, and like I mentioned above - The Fairhope Float, a coffee float that can be topped with cinnamon, chocolate, vanilla, or nutmeg - is absolutely delicious! The same owner, Gene Leighty, has been running the place for over 20 years.
The Windmill Market:
A once abandoned 1960s car dealership, The Windmill Market is now a community for food, music, and all things local. Powered by a windmill that runs on collected rainwater and solar power, this marketplace is filled with all kinds of unique, healthy restaurants, with gardens of vegetables being grown on the premises. Fridays and Saturdays local bands hold concerts. Mary Ann's Deli, a longtime local favorite with some of the best sandwiches around resides there. Tom Jones Pottery has a small shop inside with tons of gorgeous pottery made from local Fairhope clay. (His actual shop is further out in Fairhope and a great place to buy all kinds of gifts- especially at Halloween when he makes clay jack-o-lanterns and witches).
The Fairhope Pier/Orange St. Pier:
This large pier is surrounded by parks and fishing boats and is gorgeous to walk on - especially at sunset. You can always find people fishing off the side, families heading down to the restaurant at the end to eat seafood, and couples just taking a walk. The parks and trails that go off down the beach are filled with running paths and dog parks. Overlooking the pier and the long stretch of beach are numerous parks along the bluff where the Baldwin Pops will put on Sunday night concerts for free in the summer. Stroll along and you’ll find access to other piers, such as Orange St. Pier, smaller, but just as beautiful a spot to enjoy the view.
Page and Palette:
This long time book store has been around since 1968 and hosts book signings and events. They also just opened a bar inside called The Book Cellar. Each drink has a literary name like Tequila Mockingbird, Rum Forrest Rum, The Old Man and the Seagram, etc. Who wouldn’t want to shop for books while sipping on a Gin Eyre?
What started out as an upscale Italian restaurant soon transformed an entire alleyway into a little piece of Italy. If you walk down this stretch of Fairhope, the cobblestone streets, the flickering lamps, outdoor tables, Italian music playing throughout, and themed buildings - for a few minutes it would look exactly like you were walking through Italy.
Fairhope is big on their art. Like other cities, the first Friday of every month is Art Walk night. On any given day though, you're bound to walk past artists set up on the side of the street or down on the bluffs overlooking the bay with their easels and watercolors. There are several galleries that are popular, but probably the oldest and best known for everyone in the city is Lyons Share. This large and beautiful two story gallery always features local and regional artists. Arts & Crafts is a huge event that happens one weekend every March. The whole downtown area is closed off and tents are put up with local and regional creations. Over the years it has grown with musical guests and plenty of food and parties.
Oak Hollow Farm:
A giant barn that's used for concerts (indoors and outdoors), horseback riding, and weddings. Surrounded by massive old oak trees, this place makes for a beautiful wedding venue. Bunk rooms are rented for anyone that wants to stay, and hayrides are given all over the farm. Visit this hidden gem and you’ll be able to capture some stunning images.
Susanna Williams is a creative writer in a variety of media. Spending years in the independent film industry in Los Angeles, she worked in screenwriting before becoming a distributor of festival winning films. When she's not working with her start up production company in New Orleans, she writes fiction and raises orphaned baby wildlife. 🐒🐻🐱 She's a huge travel enthusiast with a love for art, fashion, and beauty. (p.s. she wore baby blue velvet booties to her ouiwegirl.com interview. so between that and the baby animal love, clearly, she wins at life.)
All photos in Susanna's guide are her own.
A dandelion rose:
Under the spell of a 5 a.m. full moon and
a blur that comes an hour and 57 minutes of clock ticking time later she woke, again.
She lived each night begging for a coaxing by the sun,
swaying from luring with syrup yellow and lucidly driving thorns into story covered fingers all the same.
I'm not so sure that I should call this post a travel post. Perhaps traveling back in time a little bit. I used to spend my nights, sometimes days anxiously scribbling, typing, brain dumping the ideas that came slamming through my mind.
I never considered myself a writer, and when I became one a good warm up was to let these mind wanderings take shape as little stories. The words I create need the imagery, the imagery needs the words, I'm never quite sure which inspires the other.
In the present, on this particular day Ben and I wandered for an afternoon at the Botanical Gardens. I sipped rosé, and lingered below the sun flair. Snapping photos in a harsh light, creating happy little accidents.
He by the way, is the happiest accident I can ever imagine.
Last night over drinks with a cousin I haven't seen since in a while, I talked about how Ben and I met. I told the story, but the part I left out was when I glanced across a room, his eyes catching mine. I left out how I knew that moment was never an accident at all.
I haven't looked away from Ben since, the prickly rose thorn of a girl I could be before him took flight like the seed puff on a dandelion.
p.s. I think sometimes I'll come back to sharing these little mind wandering stories like I used to. It feels good to me, so maybe you too?
p.p.s. I love you guys forever for reading. And those that were reading those stories summers ago, when all I could do was drink wine and wander off to the next little adventure, I'm so glad you're still here.
By the way, Nashville darlings: if you want to experience your own Springtime spell go visit Cheekwood Estate & Gardens.
By the numbers there's 103,100 tulips, 20,000 + daffodils, and the same number of violets and pansies. There's a beer garden and space to picnic and I'm grateful for the ushering in of Spring feels those bloom create.
In this post I'm wearing Nars Velvet Matte Pencil in Famous Red.
Shop the full look (and my new book too) here:
This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SoFreshSoFrench #CollectiveBias
I wrote a post the other day about beauty habits I've acquired from gorgeous ladies I've met out on my travels. Spending the majority of 2016 out in the world either road tripping or jetting off to far away places really gave me an opportunity to learn some new ways. On my travels I was researching style and beauty tricks to feature in my coming book and so I made it my mission to comb through the beauty bags of the girls who seem to have that enviable ability to look like a star no matter where they are. Whether it's hiking in a national forest or dancing all night under the glow of city lights they're the types that just, well, have it.
As a bohemian at heart, I like to keep things sunny and simple. Glowing skin, warm and nostalgic aromas, those are the things that make me feel beautiful.
As I was packing for a recent trip, one that would be fairly lengthy, I considered my beauty bag, as I do just about anytime I'm taking off for a new adventure. It occurred to me: in regards to products, much of what I consider to be necessities are pretty spectacular, budget friendly finds. (Oui!) And! The habits that I've acquired, are often things that are uncomplicated routine additions that anyone can do without spending a fortune.
For me, since I'm traveling so much, there's always a chance I could accidentally leave a product behind in a hotel. The optimist in me says surely that would never happen! but last month I accidentally left my smoothie cup at a hotel, not a big deal I suppose, but I often travel with a cooler of fruits and veggies so I can make smoothies wherever I go. I do it because it's so much cheaper than buying a $9 smoothie at a juice shop every morning. So leaving that cup behind was a bummer for my wallet. There's also the chance I could have to discard a few things to keep my bag under the weight limit (especially on my way home if I've picked up extra trinkets for gifts) and so knowing all of that I don't want my beauty bag teeming with high price items.
This rundown includes 3 beauty habits and/or products I'm living by and even better, habits that are budget friendly!
1. Artful Aromas
The artful combinations of scents inspired by nature are designed to transport you to the south of France. The mandarin & sweet almond oil are enough to have me skip my usual go to essential oil application. The hand cream never leaves my bag and sometimes a signature aroma is all a girl really needs to feel her best.
2. The Eyes Have It
They say the eyes are the window to the soul right? So, for me, if I'm keeping my makeup simple I'll focus on my eyes, and specifically my lashes and my brows. In regards to brows: you may have heard of micro-blading or permanent brow makeup, and truly it's not something I've considered. However, I am, like so many of us, interested in having eyebrows that are standout without having to spend hours in a salon.
I've tried much of it: threading, waxing, pencils, however - as the trend moves toward fuller brows I've found Stencil Kits (win!) at the drugstore and Walmart too for a just a few dollars. You can pack them right down in your beauty bag and they work with shadow, gel or powder, just choose the color that suits your skin tone.
I also love a good eye mask for sleeping, eye gels for plane rides, preservative free eye drops and a thickening mascara to keep my lashes full. If there's nothing else makeup wise in my beauty bag, these things are my essentials.
3. Dry Brushing
When I was shopping for Le Petit Marseillais - located in the specialty bath & body aisle, where loofahs are sold, I came across a fantastic selection of dry brushing products. It got me thinking about a tip from a friend who's spent so many of her days jetting back and forth across the Atlantic. The thing she full on swears by: dry brushing. It's the first thing she does when she checks in to a hotel or when she arrives home. Why? Well one, it just feels good, two, it's incredibly easy to incorporate into your routine and three, it's so energizing too! I have a mini one I found in that same aisle that I use for my face. It's the first thing I do before mixing up my morning smoothie: brush, apply oil, and then by the time I finish my smoothie and check a few emails it's time to rinse the oil. Voila!
It was so much fun to put this post together in partnership with Les Petit Marseillais. If you're interested in incorporating a little bit of the south of France into your own life you can do it without having to jet across the ocean.
The carefully-curated collection includes an assortment of eight body/hand moisturizers, two liquid hand soaps, six body washes and a bar soap with prices ranging from $3.99 - $7.97.
- Le Petit Marseillais™ Mandarin & Lime Extra Gentle Shower Gel
- Le Petit Marseillais™ Shea Butter, Sweet Almond & Argan Oil Nourishing Body Milk Lotion
- Le Petit Marseillais™ Shea Butter, Sweet Almond & Argan Oil Nourishing Hand Cream
I'm so glad you girls are loving these travel meets beauty posts! I'll be back out in California at the end of this month and will certainly be taking notes from the Venice beach beauties while I'm there.
p.s. we're launching a new column over here this weekend: it'll be printable checklists, full of styling and beauty tips, packing lists, and more. I cannot wait to share that so come back by soon!