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A NYC Kinda Life

Posts for Life-Style Category

4 “Summer’s Calling” Recipes from Design Love Fest

Life-Style - alimackin@gmail.com - August 19, 2015

[dropcap custom_class="normal"]Y[/dropcap] up it is officially mid summer and along with hitting the beach, fire flies and cookouts, one of my favorite things about summer is summer entertaining. So today I am going to share with you four recipes from one of my favorite blogs; Design Love Fest. I have written about this blog before and it is definitely one of my weekly must reads.

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Yup it is officially mid summer and along with hitting the beach, fire flies and cookouts, one of my favorite things about summer is summer entertaining. So today I am going to share with you four recipes from one of my favorite blogs; Design Love Fest. I have written about this blog before and it is definitely one of my weekly must reads.  From the stunning photography, playful graphics and captivating content with the best presentation this side of the internet, it is my go to for all things inspirational. So when I am in need of recipe or two, this is one of the first places I think to go. Most of the recipes are easy to do and generally do not require too much time. Some are more complicated then others but all are scrumptious and beautiful to look at. From the Prosciutto and Melon Toast to the Famers Market Salad to the Chia Seed Pudding with Shaved Ice to something called Breakfast Crepe Squares you will be sure to floor your guests with these “I can’t believe I can make this” recipes.

All images via DesignLoveFest 

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A Day Spent on Fire Island with a Parisian Family

Life-Style - alimackin@gmail.com - August 17, 2015

[dropcap custom_class="normal"]S[/dropcap] ummer is quickly coming to a close. The back to school commercials which have started to crop up, are sure sign the long days of sun and surf will soon be behind us. But with the three h’s raging and with another few weeks of August left to go, it was high time to head to Fire Island. My step family is in town from Paris and I have been quite busy with them, from Manhattan to Brooklyn to the sandy islands this area is known for we did it all.

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Fannie and Nestor in town.

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Fannie and Nestor on our walk to the beach.

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My step brother goofing around.

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Me with my step brother Jerome and his children Fannie and Nestor.

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] Moi goofing around at my brother Jerome’s request.

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap]Fannie and Nestor swimming in Great South Bay.

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”]S[/dropcap] ummer is quickly coming to a close. The back to school commercials which have started to crop up, are sure sign the long days of sun and surf will soon be behind us. But with the three h’s raging and with another few weeks of August left to go, it was high time to head to Fire Island. My step family is in town from Paris and I have been quite busy with them, from Manhattan to Brooklyn to the sandy islands this area is known for we did it all. Last weekend we headed to Fire Island for a little relaxation and to take a break from the hustle and bustle of the city. My step family had never been to Fire Island so they were in for quite a treat. Fire Island with it’s clean, white beaches, and quaint down town beach side shopping districts and strict rule of no cars allowed is quite the enjoyable getaway.

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap]We drove out to the ferry station in Bayshore and hopped on the boat to Ocean Shores. I had not been to Ocean Shores before and though I loved the down town area of Ocean Shores, I think I prefer the beaches of Fair Harbor or Davis Beach. Davis Beach is huge and quiet isolated. You get there by taking the ferry from Patchogue. There is no downtown, however there is a restaurant with an out door area and rest rooms. So if you are looking for solitude this is the place to go. Fair Harbor also has a shopping district but it is smaller then the one on Ocean Beach. But the beaches are bigger and less crowded. Kismet is for the single, college age, twenty something crowd and is not about relaxing. Then there is Cherry Grove and The Pines which are known for attracting a large gay crowd. I went there a number of years ago with a former coworker and had a blast. The ferry pulls right up to the bars and clubs on the beach and I was dancing the night away in sea of shirtless sweaty beefcake muscled men. Normally I would be quite agitated in such a large crowded space with so many other people, but a sea of dancing gay men…no problem.

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap]This trip was a bit more tame and was filled with more low key actives sans cocktails. We shopped in town where my step brother bought a book for my step niece Fanny. The author lives on Fire Island and was on hand to sign Fannie’s copy, such a wonderful keepsake. I am sure this will bring her years of great memories. We then had a bite to eat and finally headed to the beach. The walk to the beach was long but not too long and with the picturesque homes, over arching trees and bare foot friendly board walk it was thoroughly enjoyable. The beach at Ocean Beach was smaller and much more crowded then the beaches I had been to before. I kind of felt like I was on Jones Beach or Coney Island, and to me this kind of defeats the purpose of heading out here—I come out to not have a city or suburban beach experience. But despite the crowds this did not stop us from having a good time. There was plenty of swimming, sunning, and goofing around to be had. I know my step brother, niece, and nephew certainly did. We headed home as the sun went down and we all slept quite soundly that night with hazy dreams of sand and sun. And though summer is nearing it’s end, I will have the sun filled memories from this weekend to get me through the dark days of winter. And for anyone that is interested the hat I am wearing is from LF and the shoes are from Areosoles  The bathing suite I picked up from Delia’s years ago. And the Sunnies? We stopped at the Modell’s Sporting Good store on the way to the beach. Pretty chic right?

 

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] Images owned by ALLIE NYC©, please do not use without permission and or crediting/linking back to allienyc.com

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An Afternoon Spent in DUMBO Brooklyn and an “Adventure” in Dinning.

Life-Style - alimackin@gmail.com - August 3, 2015

[dropcap custom_class="normal"]T[/dropcap]his weekend was lovely in Nw York, a bit hot but not unbearable. My friend Angela and I decided to head to DUMBO in Brooklyn for some brunch and a stroll along the water front. It really is incredible how many neighborhoods have chang

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”]T[/dropcap]his weekend was lovely in New York, a bit hot but not unbearable. My friend Angela and I decided to head to DUMBO in Brooklyn for some brunch and a stroll along the water front. It really is incredible how many neighborhoods have changed over the years and even in the seven years that I have been back in New York I have seen a change in DUMBO. Mainly in the sheer number of people there now, it is starting to feel a wee bit like an amusement park, and I don’t know if that is a good thing. But the waterfront is beautiful, it was redone a few years ago and I can see why it attracts such large crowds. Though I must say it is still manageable compared to other areas of the city.

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap]We met at Almar which is at 111 Front street and located in the heart of the business district. I have been to Almar before and have always had a great experience but this time it was definitely an off day for them. First we had a bit of wait at the door along with a small crowd of other people waiting to be seated. Then when I ordered what I wanted I was told by the waitress that she forget to inform us that what I ordered was no longer available, then I was going to go for the second item on the menu and she said that too was no longer available. So she brought the menu back for me to choose a third item. [blockquote]she did say she could comp a new drink, so after all that I was like yes please bring me another glass of wine![/blockquote]I placed my order and off she went. While we were waiting for our food the waitress returned and asked if we wouldn’t mind moving tables as we had been seated at three top and now there was a three person party waiting for a table. We agreed to move and off she went again. The waitress then came back again and informed me that the third item I ordered was also no longer available—umm what? They were out chicken. She said that they could make the same thing with turkey instead, I agreed to this but now my friend Angela was quite annoyed and asked to have our drinks comped. The waitress said she could not do that because the drinks were already in the system, again umm what? My friend continued to argue with her to no avail, however she did say she could comp a new drink, so after all that I was like yes please bring me another glass of wine! I don’t think I will return here for for brunch but I may consider dinner. The times I had been here before was for dinner and both the food and the service were excellent. I am not sure if the business changed hands or again it was just an off day. So for the time being I do recommend Almar for dinner, and I hope the next time I return it will be up to the standards that I have come to expect.

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap]After this frustrating start to the day Angela and I headed out to walk along the water front and do a bit of shopping. Before heading to the waterfront we stopped in to Jaques Torres as Angela wanted to pick up some chocolates for a friend of hers who is going through a rough time. They had samples out of their frozen hot chocolate and it was de-lish! Perfect for sipping on our walk to the waterfront. As you can see the waterfront is spectacular with plenty of photo ops to be had. DUMBO is a unique neighborhood with two bridges crossing over in to it. It is a bit loud due to the off ramp and the bridge traffic. I don’t know if this is a place I could live, but it is a great place to work and visit, and in fact another friend of mine has a studio located in this neighborhood. After our stroll along the waterfront we headed back to the business district and popped in to West Elm and then to their sister store West Elm Market. I picked up the new Oh Joy book at West Elm and at The Market I bought a fun quirky item that I will be sure to write about in an up coming post. Well that was what my sun filled urban get away weekend was all about, how was yours?

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap]Images owned by ALLIE NYC©, please do not use without permission and or crediting/linking back to allienyc.co

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The Man Repeller—Leandra Medine The Early Years

Life-Style - alimackin@gmail.com - June 24, 2015

[dropcap custom_class="normal"]I[/dropcap] discovered this video online recently and found it refreshingly engaging. In it Leandra speaks about why she started her blog, why she called it The Man Repeller, her upbringing, fashion, and women’s relationship with fashion.

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”]I[/dropcap] discovered this video online recently and found it refreshingly engaging. In it Leandra speaks about why she started her blog, why she called it The Man Repeller, her upbringing, fashion, and women’s relationship with fashion. Though it is interesting to note how young she is in this video. I was also surprised by how pleasant her speaking voice is—she of course is known for her writing and her fashion sense but she is quite the articulate speaker. And I am also kind of surprised by her complete lack of a New York accent as she was born and raised here in New York. But on the other hand it is not so surprisingly as was raised on the island of Manhattan and went to private school on the upper east, you know, kind of along the lines of Gossip Girl and you don’t generally find much of a traditional “New Yawk” accent among the upper crust. That would reserved for us working-class folks like myself. I kept thinking how she would come across if she had a heavy New York accent. But accent or no accent she certainly struck me as wise beyond her years, which is unusual for someone who grew up so privileged. But do take a look, wether you have a blog or not, I think you will find what she has to say rather interesting. I think she will strike a chord with us all, young or old, rich or poor, she does bring up some thought provoking ideas on fashion and what it means to women.

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] Cover image via TheUrbanList.com

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Rizzoli, Oleg Cassini, and The Wedding Dress, the Next Addition to My Coffee Table Book Library

Life-Style - alimackin@gmail.com - March 4, 2015

[dropcap custom_class="normal"]H[/dropcap] ello all, I am sharing with you today another addition to my coffee table book collection, as my regular readers know, I am slowly building a library of coffee table books to use for my future home. I love buying these books—I get such a rush when I purchase one, l love feeling like a I found a treasure and I get so excited thinking about how I will style them in my space.

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”]H[/dropcap] ello all, I am sharing with you today another addition to my coffee table book collection, as my regular readers know, I am slowly building a library of coffee table books to use for my future home. I love buying these books—I get such a rush when I purchase one, l love feeling like a I found a treasure and I get so excited thinking about how I will style them in my space. This book is from Rizzoli and is written by the legendary designer Oleg Cassini. Cassini was known for his sophisticated and dramatic sense of design and for his breathtaking wedding dresses. He was also known for dressing celebrities and high profile women like Jacqueline Kennedy-Onassis and for the A-line sheath dress and the empire strapless dress. [blockquote]I get such a rush when I purchase one, l love feeling like a I found a treasure—Allie of ALLIE NYC [/blockquote]Cassini was a true pioneer and left a lasting legacy in the world of fashion and we can still see much of his influence today, as the strapless wedding dress continues to dominate the industry. This book is full of beautiful imagery and photography and features photos by such esteemed photographers as Patrick Demarchelier, Irving Penn, Milton Greene and David LaChapelle. In addition to Cassini it  also features dresses from such designers as Dior, Chanel, Armani and McQueen. Along with the sumptuous imagery the book chronicles the history of the wedding dress in modern society and is the go to book for anyone interested in designing wedding dresses for a living. Me? I just think it will look beautiful on my coffee table and since I use to work at a bridal magazine it is kind of my duty to own this book.

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap]It retails for $65.00 and is worth every penny and if you ask me is quite the bargain. This book was published in 2011 but there is also an updated version which came out in 2014. So if this book entices you the way it did me, check it out at Rizzoli and be sure to have a look around. They have thousands of books to chose from and they even have a “Fashion and Beauty” section. So, what are you waiting for?

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] Images owned by ALLIE NYC©, please do not use without permission and or crediting/linking back to allienyc.com

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Rifle Paper Company—The Botanicals Collection, a Lovely Way to Collect Your Thoughts

Life-Style - alimackin@gmail.com - February 11, 2015

[dropcap custom_class="normal"]I[/dropcap] know it it tempting to do everything online: read, watch TV, shop, write, but I still like to write things down by hand occasionally. I do work on a computer quite a bit, but when I received these journals as a gift for my Birthday, I was reminded of the joy of doing...

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”]I[/dropcap] know it it tempting to do everything online: read, watch TV, shop, write, but I still like to write things down by hand occasionally. I do work on a computer quite a bit, but when I received these journals as a gift for my Birthday, I was reminded of the joy of doing things by hand.

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] It is nice to have something tangible that you own. I like to keep one of these notebooks handy so I can jot down ideas that come to me, and that I can later use on the blog. I find that trying to do this kind of thing on a phone rather annoying. Seems I can’t quite type fast enough to my liking and then I just end up frustrated. So, having a journal or notebook handy when an idea strikes, is a wonderful way to have a collection of your ideas all in one place. And to me it is easier to flip a few binded pages, then to do all that scrolling on a phone.

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] Plus they are absolutely beautiful to look at. From the lovely illustrations to the wonderful palette and the exquisite interior they are truly something to behold. I was so surprised and pleasantly rewarded when I opened them and discovered the gold pineapple illustration motif. It is details like this that you just can’t get in cyberspace. This specific set is currently sold out. But be sure to check out the botanical collections currently available at RiflePaperCompany.com. They are just as lovely, and there is plenty to choose from.

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap]Images owned by ALLIE NYC©, please do not use without permission and or crediting/linking back to allienyc.com

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Artifact Uprising and a Beautiful and Appealing Way to Display Your Photos

Life-Style, Uncategorized - alimackin@gmail.com - January 7, 2015

[dropcap custom_class="normal"] W[/dropcap] hen I was in design school the whole carrying around a large black portfolio case was more or less on it’s way out. No one was displaying their work this way anymore, and if you did, you were dating yourself. But this was pre the iPad days so portfolios were still presented non-digitally.

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”] W[/dropcap] hen I was in design school the whole carrying around a large black portfolio case was more or less on it’s way out. No one was displaying their work this way anymore, and if you did, you were dating yourself. But this was pre the iPad days so portfolios were still presented non-digitally. And a big trend was displaying your work as a book with examples printed on single pages and bound like a traditional book. I used a site that was intended to make photo books, but really anything can be printed between the pages. Well fast forward a decade and this trend is still going strong, only there are more companies to choose from and the end result is more sophisticated. If I were in school today I would definitely use Artifact Uprising.

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap]They offer hard cover books with jackets, softcover books, boxed sets of traditional sized snapshots, larger single prints for framing, photo holiday cards, photo calendars, post cards and more! Everything is printed on beautiful, sophisticated, luxurious paper and presented in clever and appealing ways. In fact I am so excited with Artifact Uprising I am thinking of redoing my portfolio. And you know us bloggers…what a perfect excuse to do a book of all our looks, right? I mean how cool would that be! And wouldn’t be awesome to star in our own coffee table book? Prices range from $18 to roughly $100 so it is certainly affordable. Much move affordable then any of this would have been back in the day via an offset printer. I would be exited to see the books you, my lovely readers would create.  So get your DIY on and make a statement!

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Blogging Classes for a Happy New Year and a New You! Happy New Year Everyone!

Blogging, Life-Style, Uncategorized - alimackin@gmail.com - December 31, 2014

[dropcap custom_class="normal"]H[/dropcap] appy New Year everyone!! I hope 2015 is going to be a good year for you! It is a new day and a new year! The new year can have the same excitement as the “going back to school” sense of embarking on a new adventure we remember as children. I am sure we all have our resolutions and goals for the new year, right?

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”]H[/dropcap] appy New Year everyone! I hope 2015 is going to be a good year for you. It is a new day and a new year! The new year can have the same excitement as the “going back to school” sense of embarking on a new adventure we remember as children. I am sure we all have our resolutions and goals for the new year, right? Well, the new year is the perfect time to learn or start something new, and it is the perfect time to make your life even better. So I pulled together some classes and conferences you might enjoy, and find helpful. From starting a blog, to analyzing and using social media, to learning graphics programs and branding, to breaking in to fashion you will find something that will spark your interest.

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] Many of the classes are held in person and travel from city to city and many are offered online. So roll up your sleeves, put your thinking cap on and lets make this year better then the one that preceded it.

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] 1) The Brand Market (In person)—Blogging, Social Media, Branding

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] 2) Blog Shop (In person and online)—Photoshop/Graphics, Branding

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] 3) The Blogcademy (In person and online)— Blogging, Social Media, Branding

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] 4) Fashionsta.com Conference (In Person NY&LA) Breaking into Fashion

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] 5) Lucky FABB (In person NY&LA) Fashion Blogging

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] Hope you find something you like, and always stay inspired. Let’s toast the new year and a new you!

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King Arthur Flour and Some Holiday Cookie Cutter Cookies For You

Life-Style, Uncategorized - alimackin@gmail.com - December 29, 2014

[dropcap custom_class="normal"]W[/dropcap] ell this year I continued in what just may become an annual Christmas Eve ritual and I made butter cookie cutter cookies. Last year was the first year I did this, I thought it would be complicated—like you had to be Martha Stewart or a professional baker to pull this off. But it was easier then I thought. I was encouraged after making homemade biscotti which was not difficult either.

 

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”]W[/dropcap] ell this year I continued in what just may become an annual Christmas Eve ritual and I made butter cookie cutter cookies. Last year was the first year I did this, I thought it would be complicated—like you had to be Martha Stewart or a professional baker to pull this off. But it was easier then I thought. I was encouraged after making homemade biscotti which was not difficult either. The recipe was easy to follow and I was able to complete it in one day. However, the dough has to sit in the refrigerator for at least two hours and then it has to sit out for about 30 to 45 minutes to become soft enough to work with, so start early. The recipe says to “quickly” add the flour to the butter mixture, but there was nothing quick about it. It took me about twenty minutes to do this. They also say to not over work the dough in this final step as it can make the dough greasy and brittle. Last year I did not leave the butter out before I started, and yup I didn’t have time to do it this year either, so I popped the butter in the microwave for about 20 seconds, this definitely made the second step much easier. The final step before popping the cookies into the oven is brushing them with egg yolk for shine. Personally though, I did not like how the cookies looked with the egg yolk on them, so I skipped that step this time. I think they look fine with a matte finish and I thought the egg yolk was too noticeable when I tried this last year.

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap]The options are endless as far as how to decorate the cookies. I love chocolate so I dipped the cookies in chocolate, but you can also ice them, or use sprinkles, it is up to you, and what you fancy. I actually made icing this year and iced some of the cookies, but this does take some expertise. I was not super happy with how the icing looked so I doused the cookies in powdered sugar to offset my less then spectacular efforts. You can follow this recipe from King Arthur Flour, it is almost exactly the same as the one I used—except for one thing. The King Arthur Flour recipe calls for a quarter teaspoon of extract or flavor of your choice, but the recipe I used called for the rind of one lemon, and I think it is this secret ingredient that made these cookies absolutely de-lish. So if you are feeling adventures go on and give it a whirl, I think you will be super proud with the results.

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] All images by ALLIE NYC© please do not use without permission and or crediting/linking back to allienyc.com

 

 

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Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas and May You Dream of Sugar Plums Tonight!

Life-Style - alimackin@gmail.com - December 24, 2014

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”]H[/dropcap]appy Holidays and Merry Christmas everyone! I hope everyone finds themselves with loved ones and good health and cheer. Today is Christmas Eve and I am sure most of you have all of your Christmas shopping done, but if there are few stragglers out there then of course gift cards are a foolproof way to go. I purchased Amazon gift cards for my nephews as this the only way I can really make sure they will get something they want. But I do not like to just hand over a gift card at the holidays. I do like things to be a bit more festive then that. Last year I hunted around for left over boxes and put the gift cards in the boxes and wrapped them so I had something to put under the tree. But this year as I was scurrying about doing my usual harried shopping for the basics, I came across these lovely gift card gift boxes at my local drugstore.

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[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap]They are from a company called Sea Stone and just happen to match the theme I have going on this year with my Christmas gift wrap. In fact if you are REALLY late you can probably pick up both the Amazon gift cards and the gift card boxes at the same place like I did. Super easy! Well I am off now, I think I hear the tinkling of bells and the stomping of hooves on the roof. Hope I can sleep through the night!

[dropcap custom_class=”normal”][/dropcap] All images by ©ALLIE NYC please do not use without permission and or crediting/linking back to allienyc.com

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Currently On Instagram

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