March 22nd, 2014

Roses Are Red, Violets Are Grey



I grew up with 3 younger brothers. I think this exposed all 4 of us to more than we ever would have found alone and subsequently enhanced the variety of tricks we were able to cram up our individual sleeves. So much of what we knew (or even liked) growing up was informed by what another sibling was doing. Plus, because of our age range, we cover multiple decades of childhood and therefore have an even greater wealth of said tricks. For example, they had to sit through the original Beverly Hills, 90210 before they could even read, and I had to learn about both GoBots and Power Rangers.

Because there was only one TV when we were younger, our interests were shared by necessity and became so intertwined that it was hard to agree on original ownership. For the sake of compromise, I will give Karate Kid to Danny, but I will claim Grease 2 as my own. And we will forever fight over Mary Poppins. Everything we did somehow became shared. They now know about Sondheim; I now recount the epic Suns-Bulls finals of 1993 in excruciating detail.

In addition to sharing a knowledge base, we share behavioral traits, including but not limited to a demand for precision, comprehension, and the proverbial excellence. Simply put, if we do it, we DO it. We don’t do anything casually in my family. So, we didn’t just watch TV; we had it down to a calculated science. I was a living DVR before TiVo existed. I was making “box sets,” if you will, before that term even existed. And in those days, given that everything had to be manually recorded on VHS, making tapes of your favorite shows was both an art AND a science. You had to be positioned in front of the “record” button exactly on the hour and had literally no time to press “stop,” eject the VHS tape on which you were recording, say, Blossomchange the channel from NBC to FOX, insert your Models, Inc. tape, and press “record” for that series. It required dedication and forethought. [To be fair, I was always better on the night shift. I would stay up late on Saturday nights to press “record” for Saturday Night Live, but my mom would wake up early on Saturday mornings to press “record” for Smurfs. It was, like so much of what we do, a family affair.]

We are all grown-ups now. We all have our own TVs, and all of our DVRs stress us out by flirting with capacity. The living rooms have quadrupled in quantity, but somehow the lifestyles within them share common themes. Without planning or consulting, we’ll often find ourselves in a shared moment. So, it stands to reason that while I have become so careful and nurturing with my new rose garden (courtesy of the always fancy, always favorite Home Depot), Danny has become a Violet.


Danny has been working for Violet Grey ( They are beauty insiders who embrace both the whimsy and sophistication of the industry. They just launched their e-commerce site (go to Shop the Shelves, use access code Violet14, & don’t look back), and they’ll soon be opening a store in L.A. with windows that I covet:


Plus, they’ve been goop’d:


And we all know that only the best get goop’d. {Yes, that’s me, bragging about being goop’d. A long time ago.}

Now, bunnies, as you may recall, I’m no stranger to the beauty world. For better or worse, the evidence speaks for itself, as I cannot seem to stop merchandising, even in my own bathroom:


You see, that same little girl who stood in front of the television with a stack of VHS tapes is now the little girl researching and reveling in the nuances of pigmentation and shine. And now I can fill my faux file cabinet guilt-free with, because I’m doing it all to support my brother!


So, it seems that once again Danny and I are sharing a moment, both floral and functional. I’ve always appreciated the benefits my brothers bring to my life, but I never imagined that Danny would one day be bringing me the inside beauty scoop. As our paths have twisted and crossed, though, I’ve learned that there’s no need to question the seed. Just watch it grow and play in the flowers.

I’ve never promised a rose garden, but I have promised the same devotion to my current roses that I promise to names like Nars or Sorkin or to my once and future bunnies. And I know that Danny understands this devotion both in theory and in practice. We are both, after all, so violet.

Posted at 7:21 pm by rachel in: After Wonderland, The Family

No Comments

March 13th, 2014

Weird….for a Day


Because everyone is talking about South by Southwest, I suppose I’ll share my tales from that ONE DAY my mom and I explored Austin during our Texas trip. Sure, we had very limited time (like we didn’t even stay over night), but I’m pretty sure I hit Austin’s best and brightest.


We started our Austin day with Juiceland. It came highly recommended by a friend who knows that I run on 2 things: protein-enhanced, immunity-boosting beverages and coffee. She was spot-on. Juiceland was perfection.

For coffee, I recommend this place:


Juan Pelota. I’m now convinced that I have an internal GPS for hipster coffeeshops. I found this place on my own, and when I saw their sign, I knew it was home. They have a custom-painted baby blue espresso machine, they use Stumptown, and the barista had spent time at both Crema and Barista Parlor, proving that the hipster coffee scene knows no city limits. If I lived in Austin, I would live at Juan Pelota.


For food, we found Gourdough’s gourmet donut truck. Pure indulgence.

Valentines Day was the next day, and I feasted on leftover Gourdough’s Blue Balls:


I mean, you can’t make this stuff up, which is why Austin is kept weird and why I had to buy a shirt that says so:


Happy South by Southwest times, bunnies!

I think keeping it weird is a decent policy, and I’m going to keep following the advice of the Kate Spade key chain that kept my car going on that very long, weird day:


Posted at 3:14 am by rachel in: After Wonderland, Travel by Two Elle

No Comments

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

No Comments

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

No Comments

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

No Comments