Downton Abbey Has My Heart


So who knew this show had such a following?! Apparently I missed this memo. I wander around my house computer in hand watching every second of every episode. Let’s just say there is a lot of British drama to be had! Here are some reasons that I freakin’ love this show! (Keep in mind I have the LAST episode in season 3 left)

1. First and foremost, the fashion! My oh my, the fashion.

“Take me around back. I should hate for Papa to see me like this”

Every meal is an event, every outing is soiree. Dinner never is just a husband and wife sitting down over a nice bottle of wine. Everyone comes and enjoys the food and the company (when everyone is behaving… I’m looking at you Maggie Smith). The dresses are to die for. Every piece worn is made with the lavish tradition of the time. The ladies of Downton are dressed to impressed, because, well, they need suitors. Women nowadays wear corsets as tops…Wrapped in the finest fabrics, Lady Mary, Lady Sybil and Lady Edith spend most of each day getting in or out of clothes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. They have girls who help them get ready just for dinner! And how can we forget fashion forward Sybil in her pants looking so fierce! No character is ever under-dressed. Even when they are, they are still dressed in the finest clothes. Yoga pants and a Hanes white tee aren’t worn to run into town.


2. So much sass

“Things are different in America, they live in Wig Wams.”

Do you know what a Maggie Smith is? I bet you do. She is an award winning actress, but you probably know her from playing Minerva McGonagall in the Harry Potter series. Well, Maggie Smith’s character, Dowager Countess Violet the Earl’s mother, is a one woman insult machine. When she is let loose on her country cousins, especially the meddlesome Isobel, her tart tongue is sharper and eminently quotable. You should watch this show for Maggie Smith alone because who doesn’t enjoy an old woman with a tongue that lashes like a hot whip?

“I don’t care a fig about rules.”

My favorite is the banter between the girls! They are all beautiful, spoiled and determined young women. When you put three strong minded sisters together you are bound to have to whit crash through some conversations. They are so ahead of their time and really say what they feel and are not sorry about it. They make a stand with their views, fashion sense, or choice in men. The fact they are not timid and meek women really makes their sassiness lovable. They are showing that women are more than pretty items to adorn the arm of a man.


3. That House…

“The role of houses like Downton is to protect tradition, that’s why they’re so important to maintain”

Highclere Castle, where the Crawley family “lives”, and the castles/grand estates that adorn the European countryside make for great architecture/interior design lusting. But one of the best things about Highclere is that you can actually visit and tour the inside! Then there is the amazing detail and intricacy of each room, a castle that was made brick by brick of the finest materials man could find. From the high ceilings to the marble pillars, the details makes you want to decorate with gaudy crap from Hobby Lobby.  And can we talk about the scene shot around the balconies. Who doesn’t want to dramatically sigh and lean over a balcony that is 20 feet up? Or run through the long hallways adorned with gold accents? Or being able to house a literal army and not have to worry about room?



“No one ever learned anything from a governess except for French, and how to curtsy.”

Impulsive and passionate, the youngest Crawley daughter and family rebel, Lady Sybil, is constantly looking to make use of herself. She wants to change and better the world. Training as a nurse, she feels purposeful and liberated. She has such pride from her family that it makes it difficult at first to fall in love with a “bad boy” that isn’t from their world. I first fell in love with Sybil when she went to go get a new dress made and came back looking like a Persian princess in her pantsuit. She is proud and confident. She does not have the same worries that her sisters do. She wants women to vote and to have a skill set, she feels as though women have more to offer the 20’s then being a wife and birthing children. She follows her heart and does not let anyone’s opinion deter her from what she wants.


5. Love stories

“I know what real love is and there aren’t many who can say that.”

You have the obvious stories of Mary and Matthew and Bates and Anna but then they are my favorite relationships like Mary and Carson and Daisy and William’s father Mr. Mason. These stories show love in its purest form. The love of a father and his daughter, the love someone has for a child as they have watched them grow into a beautiful and strong woman (even though Carson never admits Mary is his favorite 🙂 ). These are underrated love stories but they are by far my favorite ones.

“Find a cowboy in the middle-west and bring him back to shake us up a bit!”

Then there is the Earl of Grantham’s three girls, three beautiful, strong willed, and intelligent girls. They fall in love and they don’t care who it aggravates. From Sybil marrying a chauffeur, to Mary refusing to fall in love with just anyone, they would give any father a few greys. We can’t forget about Edith (even though we usually do) but her almost romance with that old guy really brought out something fierce in her. They worry about love (as all women do) but they worry about finding the perfect man, not settling for old Duke what’s his name.


6. Hero and Heroines

“Alright, let’s give it a go and see what the future brings.”

The Earl of Grantham is an even-tempered and thoughtful man (when he isn’t macking it with the new maid in the pantry). His wife Cora is an American heiress who has a soft demeanor and large heart. What is Downton without the three daughters? Each having their own personality from Mary, who at times seems a bit cross, to Edith who just has some terrible luck in love and in life, lastly Sybil the free and charismatic spirit. And let’s not forget about Carson, the stiff-upper-lip butler or Miss Hughes, the housekeeper who rules the house with an iron fist. And both have given up their outside life for the duty of Downton. There are just so many characters love and cheer on!


7. Villains

“I’d like to give her the old heave-ho in a dark alley somewhere.”

Downton is good at creating awful situations with some pretty good schemers. The best at being the worst is Miss O’Brien, Lady Grantham’s maid who is the master manipulator; she uses her evil to keep her curls wound tight. Her, on again off again sidekick is the homosexual footman Thomas, who the closet has turned into a conniving cheat. These two typically work together when they aren’t trying to ruin the other. They are both extreme cowards who will do anything and I mean anything to get them ahead at Downton. They make things interesting though. If it wasn’t for these villains I don’t really know how interesting the show would be. Whenever there seems to be a lull in the show, O’Brien and Thomas swoop in to save the day from happiness and peace. Plus we all have a little of them in us and we secretly enjoy when they shake things up a bit.



Basic Tees

Between holes, stains and sweat marks, is it really a good idea to spend money on a basic t-shirt? Um, YES. Hear me out.

For me, a basic tee makes perfect sense — they look great with literally everything! Short shorts, jeans, pencil skirts, full skirts — well, you get the point. They are the most classic of all classics, the most simple and fresh of all things simple and fresh. I wear a plain t-shirt in some way or another almost every single day, whether layered under a sweater, tucked into a skirt, or even with Nike shorts when I’m working out. That’s why it’s shocking to me how many people don’t own a plain white t-shirt!

I’m not sure what it is that deters people: Perhaps they don’t know what cut to buy, or what fabric is best, or they just don’t want to worry about keeping it clean all the time. Maybe for the white tee lovers are terrified of rainstorms or people with hoses spraying them, both of which would reveal their underthings, or worse, their breasts! But you know what I think? I think most people just don’t realize how great the right basic tee, if properly taken care of, can be.

Here are some ways I styled my own basic t-shirt with stuff I already had in my closet. They dress some dressier items down and spice up some more basic pieces! My shirts are from Madewell (peach), J. Crew (black and lilac) and Gap (white). Again these are simple and quick ideas on how to wear this simple piece.

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And lastly here are some tees you can buy if you want to try this look out. Some are on the more expensive end but honestly you can get the same effect with a basic Hanes v-neck. Click on the pictures and they will take you where you need to go! Remember that they come in a variety of colors and styles, so if you don’t like something here look around and see what style you do like!


Hammock Hangout Tee - Mid-length, Jersey, Knit, Orange, Solid, Casual, Short Sleeves, Spring, Summer, Basic, Orange, Short Sleeve, Minimal, ScoopLinen V-neck pocket tee

Linen Timeoff TeeWe The Free My Favorite TeeSplendid Official Store, Drapey Lux V-Neck T-Shirt, blue jewel, Womens : Tops : Short Sleeve, ST8569Image 1 of V-NECK T-SHIRT from Zara


So what do you think of the basic tee? Comment below! I’d love to hear more from you! You can always email me at or find me on Instagram @theoxfordguide or tag your pictures to #TOGtee! I look forward to seeing what you have mixed up!

Until next time my lovies,




J. Crew Gal Who Can’t Even Afford the Hair Ties

So J. Crew, I have a little bit of a beef with you. There are so many pieces that you try to sell me that are borderline ridiculous (ex. OneTwoThree ). I am usually not one to knock another person’s fashion sense but do I really need a $200 crop top… The answer is no and I do judge you if you waste your money on these trendy pieces! I am all for spending a little more to get a better quality piece for something that I will have for years to come. Girlfriend won’t be wearing no crop top in 5 years but I will be giving my leather bag to my daughter to use.

That being said, you don’t need to spend a lot to look like you’re worth a lot. There are classic pieces that every wannabe prepster has to have! I compiled a list of “preppy” pieces below. I always suggest first looking on the sale rack. J. Crew will give some great deals every now and then on sale items, the same goes for Gap, Madewell and Banana Republic. If that is still out of your budget (like it is for me) try factory and sister stores (Old Navy is to Gap). Also try your local TJMaxx and Marshalls because they will totally surprise you. A black v-neck tee is pretty universal so you don’t need to pay $30 for one.


So here are some basics that you don’t need to buy at J. Crew while getting that classic look.

Classic Blazer

The staple to be a true J. Crew girl is the simple blazer. It can be worn so many ways, everything from jean shorts to a maxi skirt. It makes great for layering for the spring weather and adds instant prep to any outfit. I love gold buttons on a blazer but I don’t like the price tag that typically comes with said blazers, so I sew my own on to give a more school boy look to it!

Striped Sweater

One piece that can easily transition from one season to the next. It will adorn your closet all year long because it is such a classic and versatile shirt! Wear it with some bright colored skinnies and you’ll look effortlessly cute.

Patten Leather Flats

Cute flats are a staple! The bright, bold look they bring to every outfit is a must! Plus the brighter you go the more attention you will bring to any outfit. I have a pair of magenta flats that I wear all the time and every single outfit I wear with them gets a compliment!  Any, wannabe J. Crew girl needs her bright patent leather ballet flats.  And, like everything else on this list, they don’t have to be pricey to be cute.

Chunky Jewelry

This is becoming a J. Crew staple. Ever since they came out with their chunky jewelry line about 2 years ago, we have not been able to look elsewhere for inspiration. Everyone is taking the idea of the J. Crew pieces and making them into their own. So paying $250 for costume jewelry is no longer your only option.

Stack-able bangles

J. Crew is, again, the front runner of the bright and bold bangle but other stores have jumped on this colorful and fun bandwagon at a fraction of the cost!


Well it’s no hobo bag when it comes to space but it does add that je ne sais quoi to an outfit.

Bright or Patterned Cardigan

The cardigan is basic, well-cut, and comes in every single color or pattern you can think of. Paired with a tank or button down this is the perfect addition to taking shirt you love from summer to winter!

Jeans – Colored or Patterned or Plain –

Take that outfit from drab to fab by mixing bold colors into your wardrobe. Taking a bright yellow shirt and pairing it with cobalt blue pants will really catch people’s eye. Just remember we don’t want to look crazy so take some advice from J. Crew and make this pant a part of your wardrobe.


Newsroom Glasses

These darling glasses are the finishing touch to any preppy look. I’m not a big fan of wearing fake glasses, probably because I’ve had the eye-site of a bat for the past 15 years. But I am loving that glasses are now becoming an accessory right up there with bracelets and earrings. Try tortoise shell or a bold color with a different shape rim! It spices things up a bit. I say we give our eyes a rest and start wearing our fun spectacles!

Basic tees

Goes with anything and everything. I work a black v-neck linen tee to the office with a pencil skirt and a chunky necklace. I then wore that same tee with a pair of jean shorts and chucks. It is a such a versatile piece that everyone needs at least a black, white and one colored one.


These are the office cheat pant. They are colored pants that come in all different types of styles. Every prep needs to own at least one pair of chinos. They’re a staple. As you flip through Vineyard Vines catalog and count how many people are wearing chinos,

Button Down

The button down can dress up or dress down any outfit. It will bring more of a messy, unpolished look to an outfit or it can add of flare of professionalism. Whether you are running to the beach or going into a meeting this is an easy piece to style. It’s knowing how to do it, is the trick.

Over the years I have learned that
what is important in a dress is
the woman who is wearing it.

SO remember, it is not about where your clothes come from but how you wear them and style them. There are options for everything. Don’t worry about labels because when someone is wearing an amazing outfit people don’t initially think “I wonder how much she spent on that”. The thoughts going through their mind are about your fashion sense and how the clothes were styled. For example if you layer necklaces instead of just wearing one or if you cuff your jeans to show off your heels. It is taking clothing and wearing it in a way that shows your personality!

Any questions email me at or Instagram me @theoxfrodguide

stay beautiful,


Fab Finds Under Fifty: Maxi Love

Right now I am in love with maxi skirts ( I know, I know, a little late on the trend). They can be worn in every season- in summer with sky-high wedges or some t-strap sandals. Or try them out in winter with stockings and boots. Pair them with a blazer or basic tee to bring out your style with the maxi. Maxi skirts aren’t at all an instantaneous trend. Rather, they have stood the test of time as they are so classical. Experiment with color and patterns, as well as lengths. I really thought I could not pull them off because I am short and didn’t know how they would look. So I went and bought a a grey cotton skirt because I figured I could just match it with basic tanks. Well I fell in love and the rest is history….

So when working with your maxi try to team similar colors together to create a classy and sophisticated look like black on black with a bold necklace. Also, color block with bright hues to create something fun and spontaneous. Any maxi skirt looks great with a crop top or tight tank. I am still experimenting with different styles, so check them out below! And since maxis come in so many textures and styles, go ahead and add some to your wardrobe for a great, fresh new look!

Here are some ways I styled my maxis and see below some I found that are under $50!

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Buy your own and style it your way!

Factory jersey foldover maxiskirt Perkins Meadow Floral Woven Maxi SkirtAbstract Chevron Print Maxi SkirtO'Neill - Trina Stripe SkirtRock & Republic Maxi Skirt - Women's

Under $100: Trench Coats

“In 1914 Burberry was commissioned by the War Office to adapt its officer’s coat to suit the conditions of contemporary warfare, resulting in the “trench coat”. After the war, the trench coat became popular with civilians.” [1] Now that we got the history lesson out of the way, read more about why I love the trench coat and find some great deals under $100.

Three Reasons Why a Trench Coat Should be in Your Closet:

  1. It will always be in style. A good trench coat will last years!
  2. They can be worn with everything from dresses to skinny jeans and everything in between.
  3. They add a touch of class to any outfit

If I haven’t convinced you yet, I have tried to give you a lot of shopping options to inspire you today. And especially to get the shopping juices flowing! So I want to be a budget friendly blog because we don’t need to spend all that money to get the right look! So here are some options under $100. Take a look because it is time everyone has a great trench!

Image 1 of FLOWING TRENCH COAT from Zara Just Called to Say Hyannis Coat in Yellow by Jack by BB Dakota - Good, Yellow, Cotton, Woven, Yellow, Solid, Buttons, Pockets, Belted, Casual, Nautical, Long Sleeve, Long Sleeve, Spring, Variation, Long, 2


Things We Need To Stop Spending Money On

1. Morning coffee

There is no reason you can’t go to Sam’s or Cosco and buy the bulk size of your favorite K-Cup. I think I just bought a box of 80 for $45.  As opposed to over $150 (at least), if you were to buy 80 cups of coffee from a local coffee shop! Invest in a Keurig or a freakin’ coffee pot, a reusable coffe cup and some creamer and TAH DAH! you can start saving money!

2. Take out/ Going out to eat

Again this is the same basic math as #1. You are paying for convenience, the convenience of someone making your food, severing it to you and cleaning up after you. Instead take the $100 you would have spent a two dinners out and go buy some groceries. Plan your meals out for a few days so you have a plan. Don’t just buy random vegetables or meat and try to make something of it!

3. Buying clothes- just ‘cuse

This is such a waste and I commit this savings sin ALL THE TIME! I get the urge to spend money I don’t need to be spending and buy a shirt just because I wanted to buy something. You know what happens to that shirt? I don’t end up liking it and it sits in my closet, then when it’s time to change my clothes out for the season it goes to Good Will. That is a habit I am proud to say I broke because it’s so wasteful!

4. Manicures and Pedicures

Girlfriend, you don’t need your gel polish replaced every two weeks. You go to Sally Beauty Supply, buy some shades you like, get yourself a good top coat and do you own damn fingers and toes. For a gel mani and then a pedi you’re looking at easily $60. I know I don’t have that type of disposable income so I learned to paint my own nails. And no it isn’t going to look as pretty but practice makes perfect 🙂

5. Wasting food

This one is by far the worst, because we all know (because our mother’s always said it) that there are people out there who don’t have food on their table. I keep thinking about the produce that I just threw away when I cleaned out my fridge over the weekend. I felt sick to my stomach the money I wasted and that I was throwing away food that should have been eaten. So a suggestion I have for all of you newbies to this whole living like a grown-up thing is try to only by for a 2 to 3 days, use what you have then go shopping again. Don’t buy a bulk order and think you’ll eat it all. That way of shopping just leads to moldy cucumbers.

6. Unused gym memberships

Planet Fitness has one hell of a business strategy. Let’s make our membership $10 a month, no one is going to cancel if they don’t use it because it isn’t enough to really make a dent in your wallet. So I’ll tell you my situation. I signed up with Planet Fitness and hated it. I went on a search for a new gym where I found boxing and fell in love. Well I was still paying the $10/ month for PF because maybe one day I was going to run after work. HA! So instead of canceling right then and there, I wasted $100 by not canceling!

7. Gifts

Think twice before rushing out to buy Dad another tie this Christmas. There are so many times I buy someone something just because it was easy, so I end up paying more. I start to plan ahead for some holidays that require a gift. I start early on Christmas because it is too difficult to buy everyone everything in one shot. Mother’s day and Father’s day too. Since my parents are divorced I get to have two sets of parents! So I try to get a little every week until I have what I need for everyone! A girl that I work with just works with a local shelter and “adopts” a family. Her and her husband don’t get each other gifts, they just give to someone in need. I love that idea.

8. Buying things the night they come out

Yes I mean all of you tech junkies. There is no need to have the newest iPhone or iPad. It is extremely expensive and eventually you’ll be able to get it for $1 apparently. So just wait until the price comes down. I guess we all have a weakness because whenever Anthropologie or Madewell come out with a new line I have to buy something… So techies I feel your pain….


18 Basic Bitch Tendencies We All Love to Do

Here is a short list I compiled about how there is a little basic bitch in all of us. Keep in mind, I have done ALL of these. I hope that doesn’t ruin this lovely relationship we got going on here.

Scented candles riddle my house. All different scents some which are titled “Serenity”

Our “Quote” board on Pinterest

Along with all the single ladies’ Wedding board

Being a vegetarian for all about 3 hours…

You know what Sex and the City you are – See here

Talking about nail polish like favorite places to get them done, favorite OPI color (Lincoln Park After Dark), polish that doesn’t chip (Essie)

Getting a piggy back or carrying your heels at the end of the night

Abbreviating words likes “totes” for totally

Getting into a drunk argument just to get into an argument and have no idea what you’re talking about

You said the phrase “I need a detox” but did nothing about it

Pumpkin Spice is a season

The accent nail, I know all of you out there have tried to make that ring finger stand out!

Leggings are the go to pant

Retaking a group picture 3 times because you or your pose isn’t how you want it

You’re loving on Victoria’s Secret underwear- especially PINK

Participating in the following hashtags: #tbt, #wcw and #fbf

Ladies we all have done it, when you force your boyfriend to take selfies with you, it makes him die inside

Drinking a $12 drink because Sex and the City said that’s what you do when you go out with the girls

Baking cupcakes- Now I don’t even cook and I love to whip up a batch on the weekend…



Things You Live For When You Have a 9-5 Job

  1. Your work person. That one person who you can talk with all day and bitch to when need be

  2. Wine dates with someone who is worldly and experienced (at least in your eyes) and once you have a few drinks in you, no conversation is left unturned

  3. The rush you feel when it is payday and you actually have money. You can get gas and not worry if you go over $5 or that your bank account isn’t in the negative!

  4. The coffee runner who asks the entire office what they want- they should be nominated for sainthood

  5. Setting up your out of office and feeling freedom. Thank God almighty we are free at last, well, until you find you’re checking your email before getting on Space Mountain

  6. Work events that involve free food and if you’re lucky, free alcohol

  7. Obsessing over a TV show with your coworkers. Lisa is my Downton girl while Carisa and I are all about Orange is the New Black

  8. Having other friends who work a 9 to 5 and they understand why you can’t meet up until 7 and want to be in bed by 11

  9. Mornings where you have some time to catch up. You can enjoy your coffee and get to those emails you’ve been meaning to delete

  10. Finding comfortable dress clothes- you know that pull up “dress pants”

  11. Your business card when you get that big promotion- even though no one really uses them anymore it’s still like a badge of honor-

    Side story- My friends were still in college when I was already a proud member of the work force but I will never forget the weekend I went to see them and I got my first business card! It hung up on their fridge for the rest of the year! – This should be another article about how you know you’re the young one in the office….

  12. Fridays- because well, you made it through 32 hours, what’s another 8

  13. Those restaurants that are within walking distance away- especially that new soft serve place that just opened up 100 feet from my office

  14. The go-to person who has snacks or the person you can count on who will always order lunch with you

  15. When the office decides to order lunch from YOUR favorite place

  16. Getting out of work early for bad weather- it has to be apocalyptic- but still it happens…

  17. People you can count on to grab a drink after work. You usually can determine if an adult beverage is needed at around 10:30 am

work animated GIF


Happy Friday my loves! Enjoy the weekend!



Two Classy Girls Mixing Up A Classic Style

So today I am partnering up with Crystal from to bring you different ways to dress up and dress down the classic button down AND J. Crew’s new favorite the popover. So not only is Miss Crystal SO fashionable but she is such a sweetheart! One of my first supporters when I came into the blogging world. A little about Crystal,she takes today’s fashion and adds such a feminine touch with her bright colors and perfectly accessorized outfits (which we all know is an art form). She has such a laid back style but always looks so put together. She is such a fashion forward mama! She is extremely supportive too I don’t know how she does it, always sending IG love to all of her followers! She juggles it all, in her wellies! So head on over and see all the ideas that she has to offer to your style.

This week we decided to show you how we both dress up and dress down the button down and popover! They can be worn so many different ways. Worn by everyone from the business woman to punk rockers, how you wear your button down will definitely show your own personal style. I love dressing them up for work or throwing a popover on over a bikini top. So just a quick lesson on the difference of these two shirts. The button down buttons all the way down (duh Ellen!) allowing you to put the shirt on like you would a jacket. While the popover you literally have to “pop over” your head. The buttons only go half way down the shirt. The possibilities to work with a button down are endless. Wear it with a pencil skirt, or jean shorts. Try it with a maxi skirt and knot the bottom! Even just unbutton your shirt the whole way and use it as a light jacket, showing off your favorite vintage tee.

Here are some ways bloggers and J. Crew styled both the button down and popover! I attached the links for you to style it your own way.


Dressed Up

As you all know I need to get dressed up for work so I love mixing and matching. Taking this easy going button down and pairing it with a pencil skirt has my style written all over this outfit. I wanted to use the necklace as a collar so I buttoned the shirt up high and wore the necklace right around my neck. I chose these heels to give a lighter look to the outfit. It is really heavy up top so I thought these strappy heels would break the outfit up a bit.

– J. Crew Factory button down – J. Crew necklace and belt – DSW shoes –
– Banana Republic skirt –

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Dressed Down

I wanted to try something different. I usually will pair this shirt with a neutral pair of shorts (light grey, white or jean) but I figured let’s mix it up a bit! So I mixed the raspberry, teal and yellow together and used neutral accessories so I didn’t look completely crazy! But overall, I love how it turned out. The shirt is light, it is meant to be worn in the summer and I love all the bright colors!

– J. Crew Factory button down, chino shorts in raspberry, anchor belt (kid’s section) –
– J. Crew bubble necklace – Loft sandals –

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How Crystal styled her Popover is similiar to mine on both ends! We both went with bright colors with incorporated neutrals and for the dressing up side of things we went more of a black to grey color palette!

Dress Down

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Dressed Up

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What do you guys think of the button down? So, show some love and comment below with any questions or thoughts and don’t forget to check out the Fabulous Crystal on her blog and Instagtam account!

Stay beautiful and remember keep mixing and matching!