What’s in My Bag: Summer Edition

MK Ava Bag

If you’ve read this blog before, or know me personally, you would know that I have a slight obsession with purses… and Michael Kors. I recently picked up this gorgeous blush number to be my designated bag for summer. And why do I love it so much? I usually don’t reach for blush tones outside of spring, but I definitely believe that the color is the cherry on top of the bag. It’s a fun twist on your usual crossbody; it has a fun silhouette and is quite roomy. 

Coach ID Badge Lanyard (old, similar) // My old faithful id & license holder. I’ve had it since I was at least 16! 

Hairties // I always have to have at least one hair tie with me at all times (#thickhairprobs), but I’ve been reaching for these elastic no crease ones more and more!

Protein Bar // I’m definitely more of a QuestBar girl, but I definitely like Luna bars. I usually keep one in my purse if I’m running errands or heading to work. 

Kate Spade Lacey Wallet // I am obsessed with this wallet: the color, the style, everything. I’d buy another Kate Spade wallet in a heartbeat. It holds seriously everything. 

Chance Eau Tendre (Chanel Perfume) // I grew up admiring my mom’s Chanel perfume and was too excited when she gave me my own this past Christmas. It’s a more youthful version of the traditional Chanel No 5!

Tarte SmoothOperator Finishing Powder & Sephora Contour Brush // One of my holy grail products! I put this on before and after I apply foundation for a smoother application (it seriously makes your skin so flawless). Not to mention that it’s perfect for touch-ups when out-and-about and for setting your lipstick! 

 Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Lip Pencil in Obsessed // I am a die-hard fan of UD lip liners, and was too excited to add this rosey nude shade to my collection!

Sephora Cream Lip Stain in 05 Infinite Rose // This is the perfect grab and go lip product for any time of the day. You apply it like any lip gloss, but it dries as a matte lipstick. I love the 05 Infinite Rose for a perfect nude lip with a hint of a golden peachy shine.

NARS Audacious Lipstick in Michiyo // My golden rule is to always carry a nude and a bold lipstick with you at all times. You never know when you’ll need a bit of a color pop. I’ve always been a huge NARS fan, but their lipsticks are incredible. It’s so creamy and stays on all day and night! I hardly ever have to touch it up. 

Left: NARS Audacious Lipstick in MICHIYO

Right: Sephora Creamy Lip Stain in 05 Infinite Rose

Day to Night: the LBD (little blue dress)

Day trips and excursions are probably my favorite types of adventures: especially if it means going into the city! But what if you have plans during the day and later on that night? The key is to transition your outfit around a basic statement piece with a few easy layers and accessories! In this case, I chose my favorite LBD (little blue dress) from Madewell.


Dress (old, but similar) // Sweater // Shoes 

Bag // Necklace (similar) // Watch // Sunglasses (similar) 

So what do I love so much about this dress? The fact that it’s fantastic for going from day to night- it’s casual and lightweight enough to be worn all day, but it’s easy to switch up your accessories to make it into the perfect cocktail dress. 

Pittsburgh weather is so unpredictable, and just like any smart girl, I decided that the perfect way to embrace the unknown (aka the weather) was to layer on a light sweater. It helps make the dress appear to be much more casual than it is. I threw on some white Keds, which are perfect for trekking around the city. (they’re so comfortable!) My Madewell Transport Tote is my saving grace when it comes the perfect bag for traveling- it’s lightweight, carries everything I need it to while staying simply chic. I especially love the caramel color and how it constrasts against my blue dress. 


Dress (old, but similar) // Wedges 

 Necklace (old, but similar) // Watch

I usually find myself reaching for colored dresses for formal events: especially royal blues and navys. Personally, I just find that it’s a much more fun alternative to your traditional little black dress, which can feel a little out of place in warmer weather. I switched out my statement necklace for a dressier clustered pearl necklace, and put on my favorite MK wedges ! They’re perfect for day or night, and are incredibly comfortable. It’s incredible that with a few simple switches you can take your favorite statement piece of your outfit from day to night! Add a few accessories and a change of shoes and you’re ready for date night! 

What’s your go-to clothing item for going from day to night?

Liebster Award

 If you haven’t seen the post circulating around the internet, it’s one of the cutest tags I’ve seen in a while! The goal of the Liebster Award is to discover new blogs on the rise. To check out the rules, click here! I was nominated by Elle from ElleWhitney, and Hannah from HighEndHanny, who are two of the sweetest girls I’ve ever met. Check out their blogs, you’ll love them as much as I do! 

ONE // Why did you start blogging?

For a little over a year, I’ve been a dedicated reader of Carly Heitlinger’s blog, The College Prepster. I found myself checking in at least once a day, and realized that I was completely hooked. Since I was little, I’ve always considered a career in journalism, or writing. It’s no secret that I love everything about fashion and beauty, and after a lifetime of private school uniforms it felt fantastic being able to express myself through what I wore. Blogging ties everything together, and I thought to myself, “Hey, maybe I can actually do this!” Well, I tried creating a blog a few times before, and it always fell through. After a while, I found Sydney from Summerwind41490‘s blog, and I knew I had to start one, and for real this time (and actually stick with it). And boom, Pittsburgh & Pearls was born. And it’s going to be growing from here- expect a lot more from it in the near future!! (hint, hint.) 

TWO // What is your current Netflix binge? Or, favorite TV show?

Easy. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. I’ve watched the entire season at least twice since it was released, and it’s absolutely fantastic. I’ve even gotten a bunch of my friends (even guys!) into watching it! The Biggest Loser is the only one I’ve ever followed regularly on TV, but since I don’t watch a lot of TV at school, I usually have to binge watch over breaks. And honestly, I’m not really a binge-watcher, but if I find one show that I get absolutely hooked on, I’m all in.  

THREE // What is your favorite item of clothing?

I’ll break this down for ya: my favorite dress, hands down would be my navy scalloped shift from J.Crew. For my favorite top, as basic as this sounds, would be my white 3/4 sleeve boatneck top from Lilly Pulitzer. I’m also a huge fan of my electric blue pencil skirt and my navy blue monogram sweater (also from Lilly.)

FOUR // What is your favorite book?

Definitely a tie between The Help, which also doubles as one of my favorite movies, and then without a doubt, #GirlBoss

FIVE // Who is your musician/band?

My favorite singer right now is probably a 3-way tie between Taylor Swift, Sam Smith, and Meghan Trainor. It just depends on the mood, but I listen to so much random music. For example, my two favorite bands right now are Fifth Harmony and Fall Out Boy. 

SIX // What / who inspires your style?

So many random things. I tell this story all the time, but when I was in the 4th grade, I wrote my first report ever on Jackie Kennedy. That’s around the time when I first fell in love with her personal style. Honestly, nothing has changed. However, I get most of my style inspiration from other bloggers, especially Carly Heitlinger, Sydney Carver, and Sarah Vickers from Classy Girls Wear Pearls. (Sarah reminds me of a modern day Jackie, she’s so classy.) 

SEVEN // Upload your all-time favorite picture here:

I actually have so many. Here are just a few of my favorites from this year… I was talking about some of my favorite pictures with my mom in the car today, and she said that some of her favorite pictures of me are the ones where I look the happiest and most like myself. And honestly, once I was looking through some of my recent pictures, they all were from when I was genuinely 100% happy. 

Exploring NYC with one of my best friends, Alexis! 

Spring break in Orlando with the tennis team! 

On top of the world (aka the Bloomberg Building) with Annie! 

The Homecoming football game with Alex & Lisa

The first match of my sophomore year with the best team & friends I could ask for. 

EIGHT // You either can’t style your hair for the rest of your life (bed head) or you can’t do your makeup. Pick one. Eeek!

This might surprise anyone who doesn’t know me very well: I’d rather not do my makeup for the rest of my life than forgo doing my hair. When your hair is as high maintenance as mine is sometimes, you really need to take control. And sometimes I love not wearing makeup, it makes me feel refreshed and a lot more like myself. Plus, coming from the girl who wore red lipstick and winged eyeliner for over a year, it gets exhausting. When something becomes so routine, it isn’t as special. Embrace that natural beauty, girl! 

NINE // What is your favorite form of fitness or exercise?

Another thing that might surprise you, playing tennis. Just kidding, I feel like I talk about it all the time. I really love the sport  by itself, but I have the most amazing friends on my team which makes it that much better. But I’m also trying to learn how to love running. Which is a process. If anyone has any tips for that let me know!!! 

TEN // What does a normal day in your life look like?

Wake up, flawless. Post up, flawless. Riding round in it, flawless. Flossing on that, flawless.

No but seriously, I wake up around 8 or 9 every day. After about what feels like 4 hours of scrolling through social media, and what I missed while I was sleeping, I finally get out of bed to start getting ready for the day. I shower, do my hair and makeup (or on days when I wash my hair, it goes hair, make-up, hair, finish getting ready, and maybe blow dry again or curl it). I go to class, which is usually followed by doing work, blogging, reading blogs, hanging out with friends, or tennis. Then, dinner with the friends. What I do after that depends on the day. Probably more homework, writing an article for College Fashionista, getting inspired from watching beauty vids on YouTube. 

ELEVEN // What is your dream occupation?

Ever since I was little I wanted to take over Stacy London’s position as a host and stylist on What Not to Wear. I’ve always been absolutely o-b-s-e-s-s-e-d with that show, and still watch the reruns. But now, I would love to be a celebrity stylist, or a creative director for a big brand, like J.Crew. Or a wedding dress designer, event planner, or professional blogger/YouTuber.

Who I Nominate: 

1. Lisa — The Daily Positve Blog
2. Cynthia — Sensibly Sharp
3. Lauren — A Touch of Southern Grace
4. Michaela — The Monogrammed Midwesterner
5. Greta — A Chic Minute


ONE // Why did you start blogging?

TWO // What does a normal day in your life look like?

THREE // Who or what inspires your style?

FOUR // MAC Cosmetics just contacted you asking if they could name one of their new lipsticks after you. What color would it be?

FIVE // Would you rather be the photographer or the model?

SIX // What is your dream occupation?

SEVEN // Upload your absolute favorite picture of all time here.

EIGHT // What inspires you to write?

NINE // You either can’t style your hair for the rest of your life (bed head) or you can’t do your makeup. Pick one. Eeek!

TEN // What is your guilty pleasure? 

Pops of Pink

Top // Jeans // Trench Coat // Pumps

Bag // Necklace 1 (similar) & 2 (old, similar) // Ring

There’s something so liberating about finally being able to break out your favorite spring clothes. Bold patterns, bright colors, and flirty silhouettes emerge in my wardrobe, and that makes me beyond happy. Everybody seems to be trading their winter neutrals and darks for brighter color schemes, which does wonders with creating good moods.  

As you should know by now, I am all about adding pops of color to an outfit. My accessories and purses tend to lean toward the brighter spectrum, which makes getting ready in the morning that much easier (also because I can’t really pull off wearing black without looking like Wedenesday Addams). This is one of my favorite outfits to date. I’ve been trying to utilize some of my basic wardrobe pieces and refresh them by styling them in a different way. My Lilly Pulitzer boatneck top and American Eagle Outfitters high-waisted jeans have definitely been two of my go-to’s lately, since they can be worn and styled for so many occasions.

Throw on a flirty pair of pumps (which I actually hadn’t worn since the Baccalaureate mass for my high school graduation) and cuff the bottom of the jeans for a flirty yet super feminine touch. I decided to follow the color scheme and wear one of my favorite new statement necklaces, an edgy pale pink and white find from the resort I stayed in for Spring Break. To balance out the jewelry, I paired it with a long pearl necklace, which I knotted, and a delicate kate spade new york bow ring. For a more relaxed yet still chic look, opt to wear a trench coat! I’m obsessed with my new Calvin Klein double-breasted one. It’s the perfect coat for everyday wear: the commute to and from class, and keeps you warm and dry during unexpected rain. Plus, it’s neutral and goes with just about everything! Timeless and chic? Yes please! The cherry on top is my bright pink Michael Kors Jet Setter tote,  I believe it’s the large one, however I couldn’t find it online. And just my luck- it matched my shoes perfectly! It’s the perfect warm-weather bag, and carries everything you could possibly need! 

However, as much as I love being able to wear a trench coat on a daily basis, I’m so excited for warmer weather (sundresses, heels… I’ll be a happy Sarah). Have a fabulous day! 

NYC Recap: I’m in a New York State of Mind

If you follow me on Instagram (follow my BLOG Instagram here)  or Twitter, then you will know that I recently went on a trip to one of my favorite cities in the world… New York City. I’ve been there a few times, but for some reason, going with a bunch of friends and being able to explore what NYC really has to offer is much more exciting. I kept referring to it as “living like a local”, which in fact, probably made me look like even more of a tourist than before. I have so many amazing pictures from this trip with some pretty fun backstories that I just needed to share! 

Day 1: From PGH to NYC 

We started the day ideally. Waking up early to -5 weather with an even colder wind chill, however riding a train all day to your favorite city makes it much more bearable. 

Annie & I finally sitting and documenting the warmth of our cabin on SnapChat

Finally in our hotel room! Everyone was so excited to be able to finally use a Snapchat filter.

We spent a majority of the evening exploring Times Square: eating, shopping, and just enjoying all of the things the city has to offer. Oh, and the fact that we skipped 2 days of classes for the trip, since we went with our school’s Women In Business club. 

The most adorable bite-size cupcakes in the whole world

p h r e s h ; we enjoy red lipstick & hershey’s hats

So, disclaimer: it was Annie’s first time ever in NYC. I loved the idea of exploring the city with my best friend! 

My favorite bikini in the whole wide world. Scalloped detailing + a high waisted bottom = one very happy Sarah. You can shop it here (top & bottom) from Aerie! I actually bought this for my Spring Break trip with my tennis team that was happening the following week, so more to come on that soon!  (Oh, and American Eagle’s headquarters are based in Pittsburgh!) 

My friends and I were all a Instagram — Alexis takes amazing pictures. Follow her on IG @alexis_satterfield 

There’s something so magical about NYC at night. 

Day 2: Bloomberg & NASDAQ


I wouldn’t mind waking up to this every morning. 

We spent the rest of the early afternoon touring Bloomberg LP. 

Who wouldn’t want a photoshoot with your best friend with the perfect view? 

The view from the top floor of the Bloomberg building. 

After the tour finished, my friends and I decided to head over to Bloomingdale’s where we decided to check out some of our favorite designers and brands in all of their glory!


I’m not going to lie to you… we did end up getting kind of lost on our way to NASDAQ from Bloomberg. We pit stopped in EXPRESS to charge our phones, get warmed up and of course re-apply our lipstick.

 She’s my favorite. 

After the tours, we decided to head back out to get our shop on. I still can’t get over how gorgeous NYC is at night. 

At this point we were starving. Annie’s cousin just moved to the Big Apple, so we decided to meet up with him in Little Italy for some dessert. 

Pepe Rosso Social is gorgeous. It reminded me of something that I would see on TV. Chic young millenials gathering around a fantastic (yet still cheap!) meal on a Friday night with their best friends. Talk about dream life, huh?

I highly recommend stopping at Pepe Rosso Special. While waiting for a table, we asked some locals what to get for dinner. They recommended the Nutella Tiramisu! Honestly to DIE for. 

They taste even better than they look! 

I am so in love with this // Little Italy

Another selfie with the girls from the day

Day 3: Gossip Girl Tour & Exploring SoHo

 My new favorite lipstick! (Diva from MAC) & a peek at my #ootd

Annie and I originally hated the idea of taking the subway everywhere, until we realized how expensive taxis really are. From that point on, we fell in love with the convenience and utilized them to the best of our abilities. So, funny story. On Saturday morning, my friends and I decided to embark on the Gossip Girl Tour that takes you around the Upper East Side to check out some of the cool filming locations. Disclaimer: you have to be on time for the tour at the Palace Hotel or they will leave without you. Our subway was about 10 mins late and we ended up sprinting 6-8 blocks. We ended up taking taxis to meet up with the tour. 

A true Gossip Girl fan will always take pics on the stairs of the Met. We called this, “You can’t sit with us”. 

One of our favorite stops along the tour was at Dylan’s Candy Bar. I highly considered spending all of my money there. Everything just looked so good and tasty. And I’m really not a dessert person!

But first, let me take a selfie! // The Empire Hotel

“As much as a BFF can make you go WTF, there’s no denying we’d be a little less rich without them”

Express Love!

The most gorgeous bathrooms in the entire world! // The Palace Hotel

Annie’s favorite person in the entire world.

So, because we missed the beginning of the tour, one of the security guards gave us a behind the scenes tour of some of the private areas of the Palace Hotel that are usually reserved for events and VIPs! We even got to tour the penthouse, where Lil Wayne and Drake had stayed just weeks before

The view from the penthouse! We thought that we escaped the snow when we left Pittsburgh, but to our dismay, we were greeted with an awful snow storm on our last day. It left so much slush everywhere. 

Serena’s Season 1 Hotel Room // The Palace

View #2 from the Penthouse! Such a dreary day. 

After touring the Upper East Side and Midtown Manhattan, we were STARVING. We were originally going to explore SoHo for some more shopping, but decided to sit down and relax, get warm and away from the storm from a few hours. We went to DeNico’s in Little Italy, which is FANTASTIC. 

We ordered 2 pizzas for appetizers, which might’ve been some of the best I’ve ever had

I ordered the chicken parmigiana (my favorite!) and I can’t even tell you how good it was. I don’t remember the last time I ever finished an entrée before this. 

And of course, dessert! 

Day 4: From NYC to PGH

 It’s the most depressing feeling when you’re about to leave NYC. It was the perfect long weekend, but I would have loved to spend a little more time there. It was pretty depressing having to go back to classes the next day, but I was so glad to have gone. 

Our last mirror selfie in the hotel room! // The Hotel @ Times Square

Saying goodbye to a gorgeous view

Packed and ready to go! (We all actually had many more bags than this, and suffered the mile long walk to the train station in the slush)

Our last selfie before we had to say Au Revoir to the city! (& taking advantage of the last Snapchat filter, not gonna lie.)

I’ll finish the post off with some of my favorite pictures from the trip. How could you not fall in love with the city with a view like this?

// @ Bloomberg LP