May 2016 – A Little Leopard
May 2016 – A Little Leopard

May 2016 – A Little Leopard

Whether you live in 300 square feet or 3,000, it seems that many homes have awkward corners that you just don’t quite know what to do with. Instead of letting these areas become frustrating, wasted space, think of them as blank canvases and spots for you to unleash your creativity.

One of my personal interior design mantras is “leave no corner undecorated.” That could mean turning it into something practical and useful, like a small office or vanity area. Or it could simply mean making it pretty and filling the corner with things you love, that make you smile. You could keep it as simple as one plant, for the minimalist, or a miniature home library with shelves of books and keepsakes.

Corners or other blank spaces in your home are the perfect areas to try out different vignettes and styling. Here are some of my favorite examples of well-styled corners. You’ll notice mirrors are a repeated theme; they really do wonders to brighten and expand any space!

Image: My Domaine

Image: My Domaine

Image: My Domaine

Image: My Domaine

Image: Oh Happy Day

If you follow me on Instagram, you probably noticed that I was in Los Angeles this week. LA seems like one of those love-it-or-hate-it cities, and I don’t know if it was just the novelty of it all, but I could totally see myself becoming a West Coast girl. Yes, even with my pale, pale skin.

I hit up a couple of places on my bucket list (ahem, Alfred Coffee), but there’s so much cool stuff in LA, especially for coffee + design lovers. Here are a few hot spots I either loved or would like to check out on my next visit…A Little Leopard’s Los Angeles Travel Guide, if you will.


When Marc Jacobs assigns his name to something, you know it’s going to be good. The West Coast location of his bookshop features an amazingly curated selection of books on everything from design and fashion to music to classic literature. Shout out to the Bookmarc employee who agreed with me that “Grace Coddington” would be an adorable name for a ginger kitten and let me flip through Grace: Thirty Years of Fashion at Vogue. If only I had like $150 to spare and room for a very heavy coffee table book in my luggage…

Alfred Coffee + Kitchen (& Alfred Tea!)

I had to hit up the originators of the infamous “But, First Coffee” catchphrase, and the almond milk latte does not disappoint. The decor? Almost even better. Let’s face it, this highly Instagrammable spot is the stuff of every over-caffeinated blogger’s dreams.

Image: Racked LA

Kelly Wearstler

Even if you can’t afford a single thing in there (ahem, points to self), interior design and decor fans should check out Kelly Wearstler’s flagship boutique. The space — like Kelly — just oozes glamour and you’re bound to leave feeling inspired.

Image: Gracias Madre

Gracias Madre

I didn’t actually get to eat here, but it’s a must-do next time. I’ve heard nothing but amazing things about this Mexican restaurant, which emphasizes all-vegan, organic cuisine. And tequila. It’s very LA and I’m very into it.

Image: Vogue

Violet Grey

You may be familiar with Violet Grey, an editorial/shoppable site curated by the beauty industry’s best artists. Well, they have a boutique on Melrose Place, staffed by working artists who can speak to each and every makeup, skincare and hair styling product on the shelves. Also, it’s super duper photogenic and beautiful.

Okay, so everything on this list is very heavily concentrated around Melrose Avenue/Melrose Place. But it’s such a dream! What did I miss in the rest of LA? 😉

I am a firm believer in traveling “carry-on only,” and usually can finagle all the clothes and accessories I need into my suitcase … and still kind of over pack, if we’re being completely honest. However, the TSA’s 3-1-1- rule and figuring out how to pack liquid toiletries and makeup in one quart size bag? Well, that’s just being difficult, TSA.

The gist of the rule is this: any liquids, gels, or aerosoles in carry-on luggage have to be 3.4 ounces or less and fit in one clear quart-size bag, one bag per passenger. You don’t realize how many liquids, gels and sprays you use on a daily basis (fun fact: mascara is a liquid in the eyes of the TSA!) until you have to shrink them all down and fit them into one little plastic baggie.

I’m no liquid carry on packing expert, but I’ve figured a few things out about this process.

First, invest in a decent TSA approved, quart-size bag. It’s amazing how much more you can fit into a quality clear toiletry pouch as opposed to a ziploc baggie. Mine is from Target, but I’ve heard great things about Flight 001 and Truffle Clarity, as well.

Second, search for solid alternatives to some of your daily products (think LUSH shampoo bars and solid deodorant if you’re usually a gel person). You may even consider purchasing things at your destination, if possible, like contact solution, toothpaste and more. If you’re staying in a hotel, they’ll often have items like toothpaste and razors at the front desk for forgetful travelers — just call and ask!

I’m also a huge fan of those little sample pouches you get at places like Sephora, Kiehl’s and Nordstrom beauty counters. If you’re flying soon, ask for samples of some of your favorite products, or ones you want to try! A Kiehl’s sales associate taught me a handy trick to keep them fresh longer, too: puncture the pouches with a needle or pin as opposed to tearing open, and squeeze out product that way.

Finally, how you pack matters just as much as what you pack. It’s basically toiletry Tetris. Start with all the big stuff first, like in the below photo:

Then, you can slide in smaller items and your sample pouches around everything else. I like to keep things like lip balm and facial moisturizers handy for in-flight use, if possible:

And that’s it! Those are my big secrets to shoving as many liquid, gel and aerosole beauty products into one quart-size bag and humanly possible. Here’s what I’m traveling with, if you’re interested:

Yep…it all fits! I’m going to have to buy contact solution at my destination, though. Something had to go.

Feature image via: Elle

Like other celebrities, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley’s airport style is indisputably chic…but she’s got a secret trick to achieving it.

Basically? She fakes it. Her comfortable clothes are stashed in her carry-on luggage. “I get on the plane and the first thing I do is change,” Huntington-Whiteley tells Glamour. “Always go to the bathroom early, before everyone’s peed all over the floor—turbulence is a problem for men. I change into the comfy clothes I brought, fold up my outfit, hang my jacket wherever, then I relax. It’s just how I nestle in.”

That would explain her seeming ability to travel in heels. She doesn’t really!

Mere mortals don’t have to worry quite so much about being photographed en route, but we can still learn a thing or two from the supermodel. See some of her best travel ensembles — and more tips and tricks — below:

“It depends on where you’re coming from and where you’re going, too, but layers are great for the airport,” Huntington-Whitely told Refinery29. “Scarves are great — I always wrap mine around my head on the plane.”

Image via: Elle

“A great blazer is always good for the airport — it’s chic, smart, and comfortable.” (Side note: I do not recommend actually wearing a belt through security, since taking it on and off would be a big pain and waste of time. But if you want to throw one on post-flight, go for it!)

Image via: Elle

“I always have to wear a hat when I go to the airport, because I can’t pack it. So it always ends up on my head, whether I like it or not. I have to plan my whole outfit around my hat if I want to take it on my trip.”

Image via: Who What Wear

Here, Huntington-Whiteley dresses up trousers with a blazer and Jimmy Choo sandals, changed into after landing.

Image via: Elle

“I live in denim. If you’re finding a pair of jeans, they’ve got to have a little bit of stretch, especially if you’re sitting in them for a long period of time. I normally change into a pair of sweats or something on the plane, but I always travel in jeans that have some stretch,” Huntington-Whiteley admits.

Shop comfortable pieces inspired by Rosie Huntington-Whiteley’s travel style below for your next trip — that you can wear the whole flight!

What a whirlwind couple of weeks! Lots of life, travel and work updates…most of them good, luckily, but still tons going on and even more to look forward to. Mercury goes direct (i.e. out of retrograde) on Sunday, so things will be less bumpy for, well, everyone. Perfect timing, as I’m jetting to L.A. next week and then it’s the Formation World Tour on Friday! Serious note, though, I feel like my Beyoncé concert outfit game has to be on point, and the options are seriously overwhelming me.

Anyway, here’s an Insta-peek at what I’ve been up to lately (follow along @abigailnora for more!)

My apartment was selected to be in Apartment Therapy’s Small Cool Contest! I didn’t win (you can see who did here), but it was pretty cool to be chosen.

I went to an event and discovered t+j Designs, a clothing and accessories company from the bloggers behind Red Soles and Red Wine and I Am Style-ish. This tee came home with me, obviously.

Bow Truss’s lavender latte is amazing and I am going to be very sad when this seasonal offering leaves the menu. It’s always been one of my favorite work spots (so light and bright!) and I may have had two of these last Sunday.

Running embarrassingly late for work one day resulted in my very own #EvaChenPose moment in the back of a cab, with my gorgeous new Sam Edelman sandals (scored on super-duper sale at Nordstrom Rack, but you can snag a pair here!)

Stomach bug = weekday home sick with Sex and the City and an Instagram shot that got regrammed by The Glitter Guide! Kind of makes up for the not being able to get off the couch thing.

My co-workers are rock stars, literally. Here they are in action at the annual agency battle of the bands at Cubby Bear.

Finally, sometimes you just need to wind down with some music and your Cosmo. Happy Friday!

Shop items featured in my ‘grams (if you’re so inclined!):