February 19th, 2014

Birthday by Twoelle


February 19.

It’s my birthday, bunnies.

I’m sick and therefore pouty.

I’ll keep it simple:

{Crewcuts dress, because the older I get the more I should celebrate with kid’s clothing….right???? Dr. Marten warrior boots, because I’m post-travel, post-90s, and still warrior. Wrist: Louis Vuitton, Kate Spade, Alex & Ani, and a Rainbow Loom gift from my cousin who is far more gifted than I when it comes to said loom.}

Had a treat with my mom but spent most of the day sick with this bedside French press companion:


Posted at 11:52 am by rachel in: After Wonderland

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February 18th, 2014

I Took My Hearts To Texas



So, here’s the thing: I pack wisely. I knew that it would be 30 degrees some days and 90 degrees others. I also knew that Valentines Day would happen. And I also have a need to be both prepared and on-theme. So…..I packed ONLY heart-related wardrobe pieces.

It was Valentines Day on this day:


{Crewcuts sweater, Nike shoes, Tarina Tarantino, Marc Jacobs, and Alex & Ani on wrist}

Or maybe it was Valentines Day on this day:


{all Marc Jacobs except the heart necklace from my grandma}

I even brought heart-themed cosmetics:


At least I wasn’t the only one ODing on love:


Who cares what holiday it is? Travel with your hearts, kids!

Posted at 2:34 am by rachel in: After Wonderland, Travel by Two Elle

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February 16th, 2014

Travel by Twoelle


 If you follow me on Instagram or Twitter (@twoellerachel), you know that my mom and I have taken off to Texas. We’re visiting family, so most of it is private, but I’m happy to guide you through what travel means to me and what I wear while doing it.

Here is travel by twoelle made simple:


You arm yourself with what I refer to as Dr. Marten warrior boots (because, duh, warriors wear purple boots with tiny flowers on them). You stop at the Cartel in the Phoenix airport for a last taste. [The Phoenix airport has filled itself with quite the assortment of local businesses, a move that pleases me greatly, but that’s a story for another time.] You toss Tweed Bunny in your carry-on. And you wear as many non-metal lucky wrist charms as you can.

My family lives in a small town outside of San Antonio. We spend most of our time there, but I did discover this local (pun obviously intended) San Antonio coffeeshop:


I bought the mug.

I love the font.

And their sign is everything:


While not in San Antonio, however, I was fueled by my very own, pack-it-in-your-suitcase Nespresso machine:


Oh, and although it has nothing to do with coffee (which seems to be the underlying message in the “how to travel like Rachel” category), my cousin did get me hooked on this Texas delicacy:


Oh, yes, kids. That is shaved ice, LOTS of lemon juice, pickles, and a red chili sauce. Don’t ask. It is amazing.




Posted at 2:04 am by rachel in: After Wonderland, Travel by Two Elle

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February 9th, 2014

Where I Wear My Heart

bunny love tee


When I announced to my New York friends in 2005 that I was leaving for law school in Nashville, TN, everyone had wisdom to offer. A fellow traveler who spent high school musing on Nietzsche with me said that some Southern gentleman would likely sweep me off my feet. That’s not what this love letter is about.

My female friends encouraged me to be more guarded. “Don’t lead with the crazy,” they said. They feared the South wouldn’t embrace neuroses the way Manhattan had. While in the South, I should smile, keep my head down, and hide the eccentricities. I complained to them that hiding didn’t suit me. I felt, as always, that ultimately I wanted to reach out and find all the other misfits. I told my friend about how I wanted to one day create a place where teenagers could go to feel welcome and empowered. “But Rachel,” she said, “not everyone hurts the way you do. Those teenagers are fine. They don’t need your help.”

And for some reason I believed her.

So, I settled. I hid my discomfort, gave up that notion of helping the flawed and wounded, and kept moving through the paces of law school. Eventually, I saw a movie called The Devil Wears Prada and realized that smart people could do fashion. (OK, everything is obviously more complicated than that, and I had actually worked in the fashion industry for 6 years before going to law school, but that is also another story. The point is: that summer I left law school and chose fashion.)

I began dreaming up my store and never for a moment thought back to those kids I wanted to save. I just kept building. And I built what was later lovingly referred to as a magic little house on 12South. (I’m not bragging; people called it that!) I lined the inside with dark wood and leather-bound books, because I wanted it to look like the small libraries at Yale, the first home I had ever chosen for myself where once upon a time I felt safe. It was a house masquerading as a retail establishment where we sold lemonade on the porch, hula-hooped on the lawn, and held high school days where fashion-minded teens could “intern” for a day. It was a home more than it ever was a store.

And then we grew up, moved to something bigger, and dreamed accordingly. It was a playground where you could stay all day and chat. I’d serve up college counsel or resume editing from behind my bar, as if those were the services rendered. We’d sing or play pool or laugh or cry. You’d stay all day even though you had only popped in on your way to Whole Foods. It was home for us. The hatters were always slightly mad, the rabbits were always late, and no one ever lost their heads.

It’s not that I set out to build a haven for the wonder-minded, but let’s be honest: I put a giant wall of graffiti in the middle of the Hill Center where a Vera Bradley now sits. Surely, I was announcing something. So, it seems that somewhere along the way I lost sight of my mission. I just kept building what felt natural, but it seems I built the very thing I was supposed to let go of. I built a place for us to feel safe and welcome and empowered. I built us a home. I built us a wonderland.

My friend might have been wrong. You do hurt, sometimes like me, sometimes like you. And you do laugh. And you live, and you love, and you wear clothes. We all do.

So, thank you. All of you. I built for you and with you, and somewhere along the way I wove my heart back onto my sleeve.

Or I wear it on a chain, courtesy of Tarina Tarantino, hanging in the middle of my chest:

Tarina Tarantino Heart

Or, thanks to the current Kate Spade collection, I wear it where my money goes:

Kate Spade coin purse

Happy love month, bunnies. Let’s wear our hearts wherever we can!

Posted at 3:25 am by rachel in: After Wonderland, Bunny Love

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February 5th, 2014

Still Making Messes

Counting sheep

If you’re following me on Instagram (@twoellerachel), then you already know that I’m making good use of my A Beautiful Mess app and creating daily, well, beautiful messes. Here’s what you’ve missed if you’re not on Instagram. Above was a blustery day that threatened to blow me over my Kate Spade blue suede heels. I was protected by a purple Diesel beanie, a Madewell counting sheep sweater, Marc Jacobs leopard print pants, and bangles by Tarina Tarantino, Carolina Herrera,  Marc Jacobs, and my very own Rainbow Loom.



This was a sporty recreational day (not to be confused by the very present Nike Sporty Spice moment I’m living that I will surely tell you all about some other time). The birdie top is by Primp purchased at the wonderland formerly known as Two Elle, and the shoes are Adidas purchased perhaps a decade ago in the wonderland still known as New York City.


This was an academic day. J.Crew schoolboy blazer and loud pants that received a lot of notice. Banana Republic purple necklace (For real! Banana Republic circa 2003!). Sensible and classic saddle shoes by Rachel Antonoff for Bass. Madewell Paris tee. And the wrist of that day: Alex & Ani, Kate Spade Escape the Ordinary, and J.Crew.


I think I bought art supplies on this day, if memory serves. Chip & Pepper Tennessee Vols shirt for a look back. J.Crew holiday plaid pants, which kind of look like 90s Roger in Rent pants to me. Kate Spade blue suede again on the feet. Purple Diesel again on the head. And an inspirational assortment on the wrist including the Alex & Ani hummingbird and some more Rainbow Loom creations.


New Girl

And finally….moments like this happen more often than I’m comfortable admitting with both New Girl and The Mindy Project. Apparently Fox uses my closet for Tuesday nights. At least I’m not the only beautifully messy one!



Posted at 1:22 am by rachel in: After Wonderland

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