Natalie Notions » Where Taste Meets Travel

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Venice-Beach-Sign

STAY

Hotel Erwin – Hotel Erwin has some of the best views of the coast in Venice, and is located just steps away from the ocean and famous boardwalk. Locals and tourists enjoy sunset cocktails on the roof. One of the best sunsets I’ve ever seen was on the roof at Hotel Erwin.

Venice Beach House – For something less hipster and more California beach house chic, book a room at this quaint inn. The home was built in 1911 by Venice Beach developer Abbot Kinney. The house fit perfectly in his romantic concept of Venice in America.

Venice Beach, Natalie Zimmerman, Shopping

SEE 

Venice Canals – One of my favorite things to do in Venice Beach is walk the canals. It’s peaceful and relaxing, makes for some cute pictures, and you can check out all of the different houses along the way. The man-made canals were built in 1905 by developer Abbot Kinney, but since then a lot of the canals have been drained and turned into sidewalks.

Venice Boardwalk – Muscle Beach and the boardwalk are often times what people think of when they hear beaches in Los Angeles. The boardwalk stretches about a half mile along the sand. From here you can look out over the Pacific Ocean and watch the surfers and boats roll by. Shops, restaurants, street art and artists, all make up the famed boardwalk.

Venice Beach Boardwalk

Abbot Kinney Boulevard – This upscale shopping district is a nice place to get away from the crowds down by the beach. There are lots of boutique shops, restaurants, and bars. There are too many to list, so make it a destination and check them all out. It’s one of my favorite shopping destinations in LA.

SHOP

Late Sunday Afternoon – It feels like you’re walking into someone’s home when you step into Late Sunday Afternoon. It’s located on the trendy strip of Lincoln Blvd in Venice, where new restaurants and shops are popping up all the time. The company works with dead-stock fabrics from downtown LA to make scarves, ascots, pocket squares, and more. They also sell unique gifts from other creatives, which makes up their small local shop and factory.

Late-Sunday-Afternoon-Venice

Christy Dawn – Christy Dawn, the founder and designer, uses deadstock fabric for all of her vintage inspired designs. Her classic looks are made by artisans in downtown Los Angeles. In order to minimize their carbon footprint, Christy Dawn uses deadstock fabric and sews a limited number of pieces, numbering each one that is made.

LCD – The high end boutique focuses on supporting new up-and-coming designers and emerging their customers in these designs. They also work with new jewelry designers, photographers, and artists. This is a location for all fashion and art lovers.

Strange Invisible Perfumes – Although it’s sold internationally and online, the best place to shop for these perfumes is at the flagship store on Abbot Kinney. The owner developed the brand to make high-end perfumes from authentic botanical essences. All of the natural fragrances are bottled in Venice.

Note: Fist three photos by Abigail Collins.

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Venice Beach, Natalie Notions

The sheer trend is here to stay for fall. If you watched the VMAs or saw any of the red carpet pics, you saw a lot of sheer blouses and skirts. It’s also been all over the glossies and my favorite fashion sites. Pulling off the sheer trend without a camisole or non-sheer top underneath requires a bit of confidence. It also depends on where you’re wearing it. I wouldn’t suggest wearing sheer to the office, but you can definitely get away with it for a night out.

I used to not be confident wearing a sheer top with a bra underneath showing through. But as the confidence grew, as well as the trend, I started to wear it more and more. If you’re unsure of the trend, my best advice is to get a pretty lace bra and just go for it.

Sheer Blouse {Similar}, One Teaspoon Shorts, Krewe Sunglasses, St. Laurent Paris Booties, Fringe Purse {Similar}

One_Teaspoon_ShortsNatalie_Zimmerman, Natalie NotionsSt Laurent Paris BootiesKrewe, New Orleans SunglassesSheer_BlouseFringe_PurseVenice Beach, LA street, LA blogger

Photography by Abigail Collins

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Meditation-Mount-Ojai

This weekend I spent some time in Ojai with my best friend and family. I’ve posted about Ojai before {here and here}, and wanted to share some more finds I’ve discovered.  There are still so many restaurants and places I want to go back and checkout. It makes it easy to go up there when I love seeing my family there too.

My friend and I started the morning early at Meditation Mount. I definitely suggest going to the 8:30-9:00am meditation class. It’s held every morning the center is open, which is Wednesday through Sunday. This not only sets your day spreading peace and calming your mind, but it’s the best thing about the center, besides the view. After the meditation, take a very short walk to the end of the path to enjoy the view.

Ojai-Mountains

We then made our way to some estate sales and stopped to have breakfast at The Framer and the Cook. This organic restaurant is also a small organic market, where fresh bread is baked daily, and canisters of loose leaf tea can be mixed and matched to create your own blend.

After breakfast we hit up three different thrift stores on the main drag in town. New 2 You was very shopable, which is hard to find in a secondhand store. Next to it is Pink Thrift, my other favorite. The shop smells like essential oils and incense, so your clothes come home smelling like Ojai and not dusty old closet. It makes me not want to wash the clothes I bought.

Weekend in Ojai

We arrived at my cousins’ relaxing ranch-style house later in the afternoon for a swim and to soak up the sun. I felt like a kid again jumping and diving into the pool. That’s the best feeling. After swimming and snacking, we enjoyed a light dinner and good conversation.

Weekend-in-Ojai

Note: Already looking forward to my next weekend in Ojai.

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tips-for-a-balanced-life

Unless you’ve been asleep these last few weeks and staying away from all media, you know that there is a new moon solar eclipse on Monday the 21st. Unfortunately I won’t be able to see it from LA and the nearest viewing is in Oregon. There was a much less hyped about lunar eclipse on August 7th, but the one on the 21st is a powerful one. Lately, I’ve been feeling the affects of this eclipse and Mercury in Retrograde. Yes, it’s a thing and not just a saying that is thrown around on Instagram. Things may seem off balance during this time emotionally or things will seem like they’re going wrong. I got a parking ticket last night, popped my tire the day before and got a parking ticket on Saturday, two in less than a week. So, I’m feeling this shift in the Universe.

To help balance this energy and my own chakra energy, there are a few things that I do weekly. Whether or not there’s an eclipse or Mercury is in retrograde, I rely on these for balance, peace, and enriched spirituality.

Crystal-healing-benefits

Yoga – I’ve been practicing yoga for over 10 years and I’m a certified yoga instructor. Yoga is more than just breathing and stretching, or in some cases sweating and holding poses. It forces me to dive deeper than what’s going on with my body on the mat and look inward to what’s going on with my emotional and spiritual state. Yoga is a practice that teaches us to look inside for answers and to better know ourselves. My yoga practice is one of my greatest joys and teachers.

Meditation – I’ve always meditated during yoga, but it wasn’t until a few years ago that I started to meditate outside of class. Lately, I’ve been meditating almost every day. There are so many benefits to meditating. It lowers stress, improves health and concentration, increases awareness…I can go on. If you’re new to meditation I would suggest doing a guided meditation. I use the Headspace app and love it!

tips-to-create-a-balanced-life

Hiking – You know where I stand on this. I just posted last week about my favorite hikes in LA. Hiking allows me to connect with nature through a moving meditation. Meditation doesn’t always have to be sitting still. Hiking clears my mind, as I don’t listen to music and often go alone. It feels like a mini vacation, even if it’s not very far from the city.

Crystal Healing – This may be a little too New Agey for some people, so if you’re not into the healing energy benefits of crystals, then grab a few simply because they’re pretty. Crystals have energetic healing capabilities depending on the stone and its properties. I keep crystals in my meditation space and by my bedside. I use them in meditation to help keep me grounded and open blocked chakras.

Journaling – Every night before I go to bed I journal. I let the pen go and write whatever comes to mind. I don’t filter my thoughts or think about what I should be writing. One thought goes to the next in a stream of consciousness. Journaling is so important to feeling grounded. It enables us to release whatever is going on in the mind, and our emotions. Some of my biggest breakthroughs have come through journaling.

Photography by Abigail Collins

Note: Solar eclipses are known to open a new path, so good things are on the horizon.

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Venice_Beach_BoardwalkI’ve always been a huge fan of vintage and love going vintage shopping. I picked up this embroidery shirt while on vacation in Asheville last month. There isn’t a label, which is often times a good thing with vintage. The detailing and boho vibe was too hard to pass up. The vintage sunglasses are rare 1970’s Brigitte Bardot, which she designed when she decided she wanted her own line of sunglasses. It takes some studying and experience to determine what is quality vintage. Here are a few of my tips for shopping for vintage.

vintage embroidery shirt

  • Look at the labels – The label is a good place to start when shopping for vintage. Look for a label that is hand sewn and not made on a factory machine or stamped onto the fabric. You can also tell if the label looks old, worn and is fully sewn into the lining.
  • Check the material – Look at the label to see what it’s made from. Touch the fabric and feel the quality. Keep an eye out for any stains, snags, and rips that might not be repairable.
  • Know the era – The fabric, cut, and style of a garment are the easiest way to determine what era it’s from. Go in with some knowledge of the styles that were popular in certain eras. It may be best to choose an era you like and start there.
  • Shop designer – Look for top designs, like Gucci, Versace, etc., which are often times cheaper when you get them secondhand. But be realistic, some pieces that were expensive then are still expensive now.
  • Study – Grab a vintage fashion book and do a little studying before heading out on your journey. It could be helpful to have some knowledge of past designers you may not know.

Venice Beach, Natalie Notions, Natalie Zimmerman

Vintage Embroidery Shirt {Similar}, 7 For All Mankind Jeans, Vince Camuto Shoes, Brigitte Bardot Vintage Sunglasses {Similar}, Madewell Leather Purse

70s_vintage_fashionMadewell_Crossbody_Bagshopping for vintageVenice Beach 70s vintage fashionVenice Beach FashionPhotography by Abigail Collins

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