26 Before 27

Today marks my 26th journey around the sun. A week ago, I was bumming hard on my impending birthday – I’m officially in the second half of my twenties. Cue my existential mid-twenties crisis. While I’m not stoked about turning a year older, I am looking forward to making year 26 my bitch – starting with these new goals and fresh intentions.

01. Embrace balance.

Last year I overworked myself until my body screamed, “WTF is wrong with you! Chill B!” Seriously. I spent Thanksgiving in the ER with an angry appendicitis and was forced to finally take it easy in recovery mode. This year, I’m learning the meaning of balance and prioritizing self-care over the constant hustle and grind.

02. Take at least two adventures a month.

Planning micro- and macro-adventures each month gets Dave and me out of our usual routine, makes each month more memorable, and gives us something to look forward to.

03. Quit my toxic relationship with technology.

Staring at my phone before bed, sleeping with it close by, and checking emails / scrolling for memes as soon as the alarm goes off – these are horrible habits, I know. Time to cut it out!

04. Explore Iceland.

Okay, so maybe this one is cheating since we already booked the trip. But we’re headed off in May! I’ll have a lot more posts about Iceland soon. You’ll be thoroughly sick of waterfall photos, I promise.

05. Start making videos.

Vlogging and creating videos about photo & design has been on my mind for awhile. But I’ve been too scared of taking the plunge. My perfectionism didn’t want to get started if it wasn’t flawless right off the bat (stupid). Instagram stories have really helped break the ice and warm me up to the idea; so next: YouTube videos!

06. Sell my curios.

I’m approaching borderline hoarder status with the amount of vintage shit I’ve collected. I have dreams of setting up an online shop or a space at one of our local flea events to start selling some of the fun pieces I find (and help my husband not lose his mind over the clutter).

07. Plan something big to celebrate our 10-year.

This year marks Dave’s and my 10-year first-dateiversary after meeting on Myspace (yep).

08. Get serious about our dream home.

We’re quickly approaching the year we were planning on buying/building a house. I spend a lot of time on Zillow these days and pinning crazy big ideas to our “Dream Home” Pinterest board. But I want to make sure we’re staying on task and making the moves towards turning those dreams into reality.

09. Write a San Diego travel guide.

I have a huge list of my favorite spots I keep in a Google doc that I give to friends visiting from out of town. I’d love to finally share this publicly on this blog, along with photos and some “local secrets.”

10. See some of my favorite bands.

(Before it’s too late.) With Brand New elusively implying their 2018 expiration date, Corey Taylor saying he doesn’t know how much longer his body can handle performing in Slipknot, and a number of my old favorites reuniting for “one last tour,” I want to make sure I see some of them live one more time before they all throw in the towel.

11. Complete another Whole30.

The first time, I absolutely loved it (but I also ate sweet potatoes for every meal which kind of negates the purpose). Dave and I have gotten pretty fat and sassy after getting married, so it’d be nice to clean it up again with paleo.

12. Conquer my anxiety.

I’ve been way more candid about this lately, which I think has helped a bit. But I’m determined to conquer it completely, and at the very least, find better ways of managing it (or keep suppressing it into dark humor).

13. Develop & stick to a morning ritual.

My current morning ritual consists of staring at memes in bed and not eating breakfast because I’m too distracted by incoming emails. Not the best way to start my day (save for the memes part). I’m determined to break these bad habits and start my mornings off with intention (and better memes).

14. Visit more museums.

One of Dave’s and my favorite passtimes is exploring museums. We spent most of our honeymoon perusing through natural history and art museums. It’s something we haven’t made much time for lately and I miss it! Anyone got some awesome museum recommendations for us?

15. Go camping with Scout.

We’ve only camped with Scout once, but it was so much fun. Definitely want to do more of that this year!

16. Do more people training with Scout.

This dog is so crazy intelligent when it comes to obedience training, but she takes after my anxiety in social situations. She’s fantastic when we’re out and about in public, but our biggest challenge has been getting her to stop aggressively approaching guests when they first enter our home (cue barking and intense crotch ramming). I’m determined to see her totally broken of that behavior this year.

17. Buy my first car.

I’ve been driving a hand-me-down Lexus (pretty sweet digs for a hand-me-down) from my parents for the last couple years, but it’s getting time for us to part ways. I feel a little childish being 26 and having never bought my own car, so this’ll be a big “adulting” move for me.

18. Finally update my website with new projects.

Major procrastinator here. I have a backlog of about 20 final projects I haven’t shared. Oops!

19. Take a Skillshare class.

Sometimes I really miss school and learning new techniques I wouldn’t have otherwise explored outside class. I’ve made a list of courses I want to dive into on Skillshare, including Jon Contino’s Lettering for Package Design and Jessica Hische’s Lettering for Designers

20. Do another talk.

Last year I was invited to my first speaking gig at a designer conference Valio Con, and earlier this year I was part of a panel at a small creative meet-up Shape. Public speaking is totally outside my comfort zone, but I love sharing my knowledge and experiences, and nothing beats the rush and sense of accomplishment after a talk.

21. Get 20 (or more) rejections.

I stole this idea from Kathleen Shannon. But aiming for more “no”s forces me to put myself out there. Chances are, by opening myself up to more opportunities for rejection, I’m bound to get a few “yes”es in the process.

22. Make more art.

A big goal I’m striving for this year is to make more art that isn’t for clients.

23. Add 5 new pieces to my Society6 shop.

Going along with my “make more art” goal, I want to create more work for sale.

24. Do more photoshoots just for fun.

Again, make more photos that aren’t work or client related. I’m aiming to have, at the very least, one fun photoshoot a month and start working with some new models. So if you’re a model in San Diego, let’s shoot together! ;)

25. Get out on my own.

As someone who works from home, I rarely find the need to leave my house during an average workweek. I really only leave when I’m accompanied by others, and I think it’s contributed to my anxiety. I want to make a plan to get outside and go do something on my own at least once a week – whether it’s going to the zoo by myself, taking Scout to a trail we haven’t yet explored, or just sitting and eating lunch by myself at a restaurant (something that absolutely terrifies me by the way). I can already imagine this stretching and growing me exponentially in such a simple way.

26. Keep not giving a f*ck.

This was on my last list. But I need the constant reminder to just keep doing my thing and not give two shits about the opinions of irrelevant no ones.

Corinne’s Birthday Wishlist

My B-Day Wishlist

One of my least favorite days of the year is quickly approaching – yep, my birthday. I hate getting older, and being reminded my 20s are rapidly slipping away from me. The only thing that makes it a little less depressing are gifts. The concept of birthday gifts is funny to me – they’re both congratulatory and sympathetic – “Congrats on surviving life thus far, and our deepest sympathies for another year closer to irrelevance.”

Haha. Birthday pessimism aside, here’s some pretty rad things I’ve had my eye on lately.

1 // Golden Protective Hand Ring, Kaye Blegvad
I have a bit of a hand fetish. I draw hands, collect hand figurines, wear jewelry featuring hands. So this little hand ring needs to be in my possession.

2 // Botanical Crop Top, Hanmattan
My closet has accumulated quite a few graphic crop tops that I pair with high-waisted skirts. This one featuring a botanical illustration would make a nice addition.

3 // Starburst Studs, Mason Grace Jewelry
These starburst earrings are way outside anyone’s budget, but I’ve been searching high and low for a pair of 8-pointed star earrings, and these gold and black diamond studs could not be more perfect.

4 // Dog Portrait Oil Painting, Alpen Antiks
I have a small collection of dog ephemera. It’s super silly, but one of the next collections I’m hoping to start is a gallery wall of vintage dog portraits. I just finished a dark and moody 18th/19th-century style portrait of Scout to kickstart the collection. But I’ll be keeping an eye out on our estate sale hunts for more.

5 // Joslin Pillow, Joanna Gaines
Although my personal style is darker and odder, I – like the rest of America – have fallen completely in love with anything and everything Joanna Gaines touches. (Anyone who doesn’t like the Gaines doesn’t have a soul.) These pillows are no exception. I’m dying for some high quality, neutral yet textural throw pillows for our gold velvet couch.

6 // Arsenic No. 17 Parfum, TokyoMilk Dark
TokyoMilk’s Dark collection has some of my favorite scents. I have this fragrance as the hand creme – notes of absinthe, vanilla salt, cut greens, and crushed fennel – but need the spray perfume now.

7 // Case Study Planter, Modernica
More than anything, I just want more plants and large cacti for my birthday.

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Milkweeds : Becka Palter

Conceptual Shoot

Feels good to be exercising my creative muscles more this year. Last year, I was all about the daily work hustle, I hardly spent any time diving into personal passion projects. And it was majorly depressing. This shoot felt like my creativity came out of hibernation.

I dumped a half gallon of about-to-expire milk into my bath and tangled a bunch of dead flowers I had around the house into Becka’s hair. Apparently that’s the recipe for magic, cuz I couldn’t be happier with the way these turned out.

Model: Becka Palter // Styled + photographed by Corinne Alexandra








Outfit : Ace of Spades

After recently “minimalizing” my wardrobe, my closet is a sea of black with just a few pops of burgundy and olive. That’s about as colorful as I get. So when Coach wanted to send me a Dinky crossbody bag from their pre-spring 2017 collection, this bordeaux / oxblood red was the only color calling my name.

Now I’m not normally a designer bag type of girl (I typically wear my $20 off-brand purses until they’re literally falling apart and the pleather is disintegrating) but I’m really loving the classic, simple, and sleek look of this piece.

Honestly, I know nothing about classic fashion and even less about designer brands, so I won’t shit you about the “timeless”ness of this bag. But what I do know is: this purse totally takes my daily grungy band tee and ripped jeans look to a whole other level. I actually appear thoughtfully put together and fashion-conscious despite living in this same outfit for three consecutive weeks! And that, my friends, is reason enough to check one out for yourself.

Bag: Coach // Leather Jacket: Muubaa // Hat: Forever 21 // Boots: Steve Madden // Jeans: H&M






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This is a sponsored post but all opinions are my own.

Valentine’s Gifts for Your Dude

Valentine’s Gift Guide for Him

The holiday of candy hearts and drug-store teddy bears is upon us. If you’re like Dave and me, and can hardly stomach the plethora of pink around every corner, then this gift roundup is for you. Since you lady readers loved my past odd gift guides, I thought I’d do one for the equally strange dudes in our lives. Enjoy and pass it on!

1 // Dracula in the Streets, Wolfman in the Sheets shirt, Local Boogeyman
Brag on your Bela Lugosi bae and let the world know what a monster he is (in the best way possible).

2 // Death Before Decaf mug, P&Co.
For the coffee snob who likes it black and bitter, just like his soul.

3 // Brass Siren Pocket Knife, Vintage Crack
What’s sexier than sirens who seduce sailors to their watery graves? You might not be siren sexy, but at least your man will think of you every time he uses this mermaid knife.

4 // Leather Snake Back Patch, Shrimp Sauce
Charm your man with this super rad and super huge leather back patch featuring a 19th-century engraving inspired illustration of a snake.

5 // The Empire of Death, Paul Koudounaris
I don’t know about you, but as someone who spent her honeymoon pilgrimaging to incorruptible corpses in Italy, I find ossuaries and charnel houses incredibly romantic. This book is full of beautiful decorated skulls and religious structures adorned entirely with human bones.

6 // Partial Goat Skull, Mediterraneon
When in doubt, get him a skull. Who doesn’t need more skulls?

7 // Memento Mori Biker Ring, Rough Design Co.
This design was molded from a Victorian era Memento Mori ring, a time when death was much more romanticized. Remind your lover that while your bodies are mortal, your love is eternal.

8 // Aged Bourbon Beard Tonic, Madame Scodioli
This one is a gift for you as much as it is for him. He’ll have a soft kissable beard that smells like “richly aged wood and warm vanilla, earthy spice and the slightest hint of cherry and caramel.” Win win.

Hope you ladies & gents got some good ideas from this list. I know the descriptions are a little silly, but these are seriously rad pieces that all support small businesses and artisans. So whatever you buy your dude this v-day, be inspired to shop small!

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