Ceylon Tea Trails, Sri Lanka

My sister recently returned from her honeymoon in Sri Lanka and stayed for a few days in the country’s central highlands at an incredible resort called Ceylon Tea Trails. The resort is made up of 5 different bungalows that all belonged to British tea-planters during the 19th century. Each bungalow has preserved its colonial-era architecture and is uniquely decorated with period furnishings. Guests staying at these bungalows enjoy a slower pace of travel, soaking in the vistas of Castlereagh Lake and verdant green tea plantations. Of course, tea is a huge part of staying at Ceylon Tea Trails. The property is surrounded by its own tea fields where the tea is picked and processed in a factory. Guests can also take a tour of the factory to learn how tea is made from leaf to cup. Afternoon tea is served every day and each house has a full staff including your own butler, who is there to arrange anything and everything for the guests. The food and drinks are incredible at Ceylon Tea Trails. The chef at her bungalow created custom menus for the guests that featured tea-inspired recipes, like tea-infused chicken, and Sri Lankan classics, like rice and curry. This hotel has a personal and understated luxury and charm that is truly one-of-a-kind! Check out photos from the rest of Karen’s Sri Lanka tour here – you’ll understand why it’s at the top of my travel bucket list!

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Kelly Beeman

Kelly Beeman‘s story is a fascinating one. A few years ago, the self taught Brooklyn based artist, who was only drawing nude figures at the time, decided to peruse Style.com in search of inspiration. It was unchartered territory as Kelly didn’t know much about fashion. But it was a collection from J.W. Anderson that immediately resonated with her, motivating her to whip up several paintings of her nudes dressed in the designer’s resort looks. She shared them with the designer via Instagram, who happened to love her work, and thus began her flourishing career as a fashion illustrator. Kelly has worked on commissions from J.W. Anderson, Loewe, Tory Burch, and Mara Hoffman, and has created fashion editorials for Marie Claire, Vogue and Interview Magazine. My favorite work of hers has to be the Sister series, an editorial where she explores the lives of four sisters and expresses their individuality in the form of fashion.

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Carven Resort 2018

With a new successor at the helm, Carven is back and honestly, the label is looking better than ever. For his debut collection, Swiss born Dior alum Serge Ruffieux turned to the founder of the storied French house, Madame Carven, for the core of his inspiration. Smocked collar shirts, panelled mini-length dresses, tailored cut out dresses, and knit jacquard vests – all with the most distinctive details – are meant to emanate Carven’s love of world travel, her propensity towards the color green, and her signature retro, aristocratic flair. And all those tassel adorned flats?! Mais, oui!

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Currently Crushing On: Coin Necklaces

Over the years, I’ve been slowly collecting vintage charms and pendants and more recently, I’ve been on a hunt for antique coins. I love the weighty feel of them and the ease in which they layer on varying chain lengths. Sadly, thus far, I haven’t come across any pieces that I’m truly connected to. If you’ve got any leads, please let me know! In the meantime, here are some inspiring examples . . .

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Learning New Skills

You guys. I’ve become a floral designer and a shoemaker! Well, that’s only partially true .  .  . Let’s just start by saying that I’ve always been intrigued by the craftsmanship behind floral design and shoe making. Years ago, I took a beginner’s flower arranging workshop and it completely changed the way I viewed, purchased, and arranged flowers. Since then, I’ve longed to deepen that experience further. And as most of you already know, I have a fascination with shoemaking. We’ve featured several designers on HonestlyWTF whose artisanal process has inspired us. So recently, when I was presented with the opportunity to take a couple of classes via Skillshare, an online learning platform with 15,000 classes taught by the world’s best practitioners, I excitedly added flower arranging and sandal making to my list of courses. I love the way the video tutorials are broken down into sections, making the experience unhurried and comprehensible. In just a mere 40 minutes, I learned so much more about creating an impressive centerpiece, as well as tips on how to choose the right color of flowers and how to keep the flowers long lasting. And in just a few days, I learned how to make shoes. I was skeptical about the promise of walking away with a pair of sandals from a single tutorial but was surprised that I actually executed sandals that I’d actually wear. I’m proud and ecstatic about my newfound skills and cannot wait to learn more. I encourage you guys to explore your undiscovered skills and thanks to our friends at Skillshare, you can. They’re gifting you two free months of unlimited access to stream their 15,000+ classes. Simply register here, or use code HONESTLY, to start your two free months. I’d love for you to share what you’ve created. Happy learning!

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