It’s the best when a life list item kind of falls in your lap, especially one like this. We went to Doheny and Nesbitt’s on recommendation from an Irish friend. As the name suggests, it was as cinematically Irish as a pub gets — by which I mean very drunk. The women on the barstools next to us had just completed some sort of endurance swim, and they were on the group-singing cocktail. I didn’t realize I knew the song until they got to the chorus. Then we joined in, swinging our whiskeys around singing “cockels and mussels, alive, alive, o!” Fantastic.
The Mighty Summit is this weekend, and it’s all about life lists, so I’m committing to crossing five more things off in the next three months. This is a great place to start. Dublin, thanks for making us feel so at home.
Will you join me? What can you cross off in the next three months?
This is every item of clothing I packed for seven days in Dublin. I’m doing a campaign for L.L.Bean’s Signature Collection and they sent me a giant box of clothes, so I’m wearing a few of those items below. That means you can actually obtain some of these pieces, instead of cursing me when I tell you that everything you love was purchased at a vintage shop in 2001.
For example, this perfectly faded brown dress with polka dots? It’s L.L.Bean’s Silk Habutai Dress, and it’s so Little Orphan Annie. Except it’s made of heavy silk, but who says orphans can’t have nice things? Jerks, that’s who.
Anyway, as I mentioned recently, belts are a challenge for me. I’ve been trying to up my game on that front, so I bought a few from H&M and this is my first attempt. I felt so pulled together, ya’ll. The cardigan I’m belting here is also H&M, but it’s from the men’s section, which is where they keep all the good stuff.
The grey tights are Target, and the magic travel boots are from Argentina. They’ve gotten me through more trips than I can count.
Let’s get a closer look at those blue polka dots:
Hello, little buddies.
This is my travel outfit, hence the action pose. It’s a knit dress I got at a thrift store, worn with an H&M elastic belt and the aforementioned tights and boots. I also wore a grey sweater wrap that I didn’t get a photo of, but you can see it in my New York post from a couple years ago. It doubles as an airplane blanket.
I’m wearing the dress on the way back home too, so I’ll be washing it in the bathtub while I’m here. Airplane germs gross me out. Another reason to do a quick rinse:
This is the dress worn as a top. I’ve cleverly safety pinned the sides to the outside layer of my Express Ultra Skinny Stella jean pockets. You can also use extra large safety pins to do a gathering effect on the sides of your dress, which is slightly more labor intensive, but arguably more effective. There are those boots again. I love you, boots.
The necklace is also H&M, it makes everything a little more current. Unlike these killer sleeves. What’s up 1983? We miss your economy.
The circle scarf is H&M, and I love how easy it is to mess with proportions when you’re wearing it. Also, coziness.
These are my Rudolf Dassler PUMAs, which I adore, so of course they rub away the skin over my Achilles tendon. I’ve been trying to decide whether I strictly need that skin, so I’ve taken to tying them lower. This frees up a lot of extra lace, hence the creative lace tying. I like the way it looks, so I’ve been doing that with all my sneakers now.
This is a packing minimization outfit. We’re revisiting the cardigan, boots, and jeans.
I forget where the shirt came from, but I bought it because I liked the gathering around the neck and cuffs. You have to iron it like crazy though, and I only seem to have time for that when I’m on vacation.
The hat is hand knit, I got it at a thrift store where I get almost all of my hand-knit items. For the record, if someone hand knits you something and you send it to a thrift store? I’m pretty sure you need to go to confession, or sacrifice a goat or something. Or at least learn how to knit things that other people can then throw away — full circle.
I try to pack PJs I can wear as clothes in a pinch, so this is a tank top and cropped sweats from who knows where. I wear the tank under stuff for an extra layer if it’s cold. The comfy pants are nice if I get sick and want to be cozy, or if my flight is delayed and everything I’m wearing is coated in airport goo.
Chic librarian is my preferred look, so this is my favorite outfit for the trip.
These are L.L.Bean’s Cuffed Cropped Pant. They are fantastic. I’d normally wear them with a chunky heel, but we’re walking on cobblestones in the rain here, so these are cheap, destroyable flats from Target.
The cashmere cardigan is from the Alameda Flea Market, the Peter Pan collar top was 99 cents on eBay, and the modernized cat-eye glasses are Dolce and Gabbana. The hair scarf is actually a belt from a polyester ’70s dress I got at a thrift store when I was in high school. Yeah. It’s time to clean out my closet.
Thanks to the team at L.L.Bean Signature Collection for sponsoring this post.
Next time I have a clambake, you are so invited.
Things I’ve seen in Dublin that I’d never seen before:
- Advertising signs with a measure of humility, “Probably the best coffee in Dublin.” And subliminal truth in advertising, like placing the “cereal bars” right alongside the candy bars:
- Ketchup in tomato containers:
- They don’t offer you bags for small purchases here. I bought a juice box, an apple, and a yogurt this morning, and the guy just gave me change and turned away.
- Giant golf umbrellas are totally acceptable for use on city sidewalks, and indeed seem to be preferred:
- Ashtrays with chimneys:
-This miserly toilet paper dispenser, which distributes a single square at a time from the center of the roll:
When we leave for trips, Hank usually hugs us, kisses our faces, and asks what kind of toy we’ll bring back. That was the drill for all of our travel for the last couple of years, it just didn’t really phase him. Until Saturday, that is. Bryan told Hank he was leaving on a work trip to Ireland, and Hank was displeased. I’ve been traveling a ton this summer, and all of Hank’s friends have been leaving daycare to go to preschool. Hank’s preschool doesn’t start until later this month, so he’s been feeling a little left behind.
Apparently, Dad leaving was the last straw. Hank refused to make eye contact for a few hours, and then began to shriek, “DON’T GOOoooooo!”
Oooh, my friends.
So I find myself unexpectedly in Dublin. The original plan was for me to stay home with Hank, because I was busy preparing for the Mighty Summit. But the heartbreaking dismay of our three year old happened to coincide with a crazy cheap last-minute ticket sale. When we realized we might be able to swing it, we asked Hank what he thought.
-Kiddo? Mommy and Hank and Daddy could all go on the airplane together, would you like that?
-Oh, YEEEES! That would make me very much happy!
-OK, should we pack your suitcase?
-YES! YES! Oh, thank you! I love you so much!
We love you too, little guy.
Also, it’s 2 a.m. in Ireland. Go to sleep.