Sister, Sister





It’s hard to describe how special it was celebrating both of our birthdays together in California for the first time… ever (we were born 368 days apart). These pictures come pretty close though. Sometimes we were making sure to pose just right for our Coachella Diaries post pictures, but most of the time we were being goofy and dancing and having a blast. Sisterly love at its finest!

Xx, E & S


Happy New Year (+ Q&A with Tappan Collective)


Happy 2014!

We hope everyone is enjoying the fresh start that comes with a New Year. Looking back to 2013, it looks like it will be a tough year to beat. As sisters, we have always talked about collaborative projects to start, and this past summer we launched FromVA2CA.

Being separated by 3,000 miles is tough enough, but this blog was a way for us to feel closer than ever by writing posts together. We were able to discover similar bloggers, companies, products, and of course our own voices. And the best part was connecting with other people through the common interest of our blog.

We have rekindled old relationships and sparked new ones, and we want to thank each and every one of you that has taken the time to be a part of our blog.

Speaking of New Year’s resolutions, we have a few sister goals we set for ourselves, and one of those is to see and appreciate more art. We love community Art Walks and museums, but we have been anxious to start collecting some pieces of our own (other than on our Pinterest board).

Last year, we spotted a rad print from the Tappan Collective in the Holiday Gift Guide issue of Foam. It stayed with us because our last name is Tappen (with an ‘e’). So, we researched, we obsessed, and we reached out to the company’s co-founders for the chance to do a Q&A. And they said ‘yes’!

What we love most about Tappan Collective is that the company was founded by two fabulous ladies right out of college, Chelsea and Jordan, as way to get young and talented artists recognized. And they have a fabulous company name to boot. Check out the Q&A below:

Emmy & Sarah: Thank you both so much for your time! We obviously love the name of your company, but why did you decide to start the Tappan Collective?

 C + J: After college, many of our friends sought us out to help create art collections for their new homes. We also have friends who are talented artists, but weren’t necessarily getting recognition from the art world yet and we wanted to find a way to support them. We landed on the idea of connecting aspiring collectors and emerging artists everywhere who favor sophisticated and fresh art to be apart of their daily lives.

We wanted to bring young artists’ work into the homes and lives of people with great taste and a limited budget.

Emmy: Since we’re all about East vs. West here, who are a few East and West-coast based artists you’re really digging right now?

C + J: Tappan Collective loves both East & West. Heather Day out of Oakland, CA is new to our family and she makes the loveliest paintings! Brian Merriam out of NYC, is a recent addition to the Tappan family as well and he does incredible things with the camera.

Sarah: Not a lot of people would think of Richmond, VA as having an incredible art scene. Where are a few other locations you have found with the same surprising/inspiring culture?

C + J: Detroit’s art scene doesn’t get enough attention! Two of our artists: Kelsey Shultis and Doug Galante, are producing some truly inspiring work out of Detroit. In the midst of all of its financial turmoil, the art scene is strong and continues to thrive.

Sarah: What advice would you give to someone looking to start collecting art?

C + J: Collecting art essentially depends on your instincts so trust whatever speaks to you.

Here are some of our Tappan Collective picks we’re dreaming of on our walls:


Wishing you all the best 2014 ever —

Xx,  E & S

From top, left; clockwise:
Somewhere by Brian Merriam; Alex Knost 1 by Isaac Zoller; Cosmic Dust Particle 2 by Anna Ayeroff; Hemlock by Stevie HowellAgainst the Odds by Heather Day; Horses by Brian Merriam (center)

{All photos property of The Tappan Collective}

Cheers to the Graduate!



That familiar feeling is in the air – the call of college Winter break.  Another semester come and gone, and the promise of a fresh start in the impending New Year.

This Winter break will be a little different, signaling not only the end of a school year, but school altogether as Sarah prepares to graduate next month!

My baby sister has been slammed with the papers, projects, and exams that come in the home stretch, so I am honored to share some of her beautiful senior pictures. She just finished taking these this past weekend with her best friend and photographer, Sydney, and they completely capture her beautiful inner light.


I am so proud of all that this lady has accomplished in the brief time she has been a Ram. She rose to the top of her class in Fashion Merchandising (and was hand-picked as one of the handful to meet Tim Gunn during a college visit), and plans to use her new degree to land a job at one of her favorite foamy companies.

Sarah is such a hard-working individual, and I completely believe she can achieve anything she sets her mind to. I just hope one day her aspirations will bring her to me on the West coast! Or we’ll make our own adventure in a new state. Is from VA2CA2HI too much?

It may be a month early, but congrats, seester! I love you so much.

Xx, E


The Guest Blog Love Continues

So, remember that awesome gal that posted for us yesterday? The super-chic and witty Asia Croson? Well, she has plenty of those wonderful blog posts as a part of her photography page, where you can see both her style and her photography! She is a super-talented photographer that I was lucky enough to shoot with for my college senior pictures last year. I am finally reminiscing over that wonderful day on her blog today, with a few tips and tricks for a perfect photoshoot.

Xx, E

acro collage 

Acro Photography Guest Post: Rockin’ the #OOTD

Oh, the #ootd. You think you can only do it if you look amazing. Or if you’re doing some sort of 30-day challenge. Or if you look particularly horrible and you’re into irony. I feel you.

But if you’re the fashion maven I think you are, you may just look amazing A LOT of the time. And then it is necessary, obligatory, mandatory.. for Pete’s sake woman, just show us your awesome fashion concoctions on Instagram and hasthag it. Gracias.

But now, how to do this without being totes boring…?

Let me give you the proper ingredients to rocking your #ootd for us Instastalkers to adore.

Prerequisites: You have a full length mirror, an iPhone, a non ugly cover (I literally took mine off sometimes), and an Instagram. Obvi.

1.     Find your pose.

You’re going to see a variation of this in most of my #ootd posts- Legs crossed (hello hour glass), elbow into the side (oh, hi tiny waist), playing or not playing with my hair. One of my friends commented “Maybe you need a new pose” and I was like.. why? I look amazing in all these pictures. Let’s face it.


2.     Then.. don’t do it.

So maybe my friend had a point. Find your pose, then change it up when you feel you can. Is your dress doing the hour glass thing for you? Awesome. Lean against the wall and show it off.  Sit down. Show off the shoes. Do it all.


3.     Show off the accessories

“It’s in the little things.”.. Don’t they always say that? Yes, yes they do. So show those little things off. This is what PicStitch was invented for, #ootd cute details. Obvi. So show us the goods! Also, feel free to throw in a random accessory that you’re actually not wearing (see maracas below), just because it’s relevant and matches and looks cool. It’s your #ootd, girl, maybe you ARE wearing the maracas. Nobody on Instagram can tell you you’re not!


4.     Show it off

Have a favorite part of the outfit that you want to especially point out? Mine’s usually my hair. Note #Tip 1 photo 1- pulling the hair. I straightened my hair that day (I NEVER do anything with my hair.. as you may have noticed in these pics..) and really wanted to show off its length. In the pics below, I have a wig on anddd wanna make it clear to anyone new showing up that I indeed do not have a ginger fro.. and I also have THE CUTEST flowers in my hair for a photoshoot in the next pic. Point them out. Don’t let them go unnoticed! What if someone was attracted by my awesome skirt? No! The flowers! Look at the flowers!


5.     Do a sequence

Sometimes your #ootd is #2ootds or #ijcd (I just cant decide). Or #iamshoppingrightnowformyootd. That’s great. Two of your amazing fashion recipes in one day?! Amazing.

Pic stitch is your friend. And your Insta followers are your friends, too. I could not decide what look to go for for my Valentines Day date with my honey this year- cute ballerina or sexy maven? So I asked my Instafriends to give me some input! Can you guess which one won? 😉

(The second pic is of me shopping with wedges and advising friends to NEVER shop with wedges. Everything looks good with wedges! Had to buy it all!)


6.     Just do it

Remember, #ootd is not just for tight dress, high heel kind of days. Like remember when it’s FINALLY FALL and this has been the longest summer EVER?! Yayyy getting to wear boots and a comfy sweater finally!! What does that mean? Oh, #ootd. Yeah. Orrr.. getting dressed in the dark and still being kind of matching? #ootd worthy. These aren’t just pictures and records of your fashion triumphs.. these #ootds are SO MUCH MORE. They are stories of your LIVES. What you wear is a reflection of what you’re doing, where you are on your path, WHO YOU ARE. Who knew hashtags and selfies were so powerful?


Leave a comment below with your instagram handle (Mine is @asiacroson!) so we can follow you and be inspired by your #ootd! And if you haven’t done one, Or I will keep going with my “Clothes are an important extension of your life” thing, and then if you REALLY don’t, I will get going on my “Photographs are THE MOST IMPORTANT PART OF REMEMBERING YOUR LIFE” thing.. and that’s a whole other story!

Happy #ootd day people! ❤

 { Asia Croson, founder of Acro Photography, also blogs! Check out her blog page:}

Photo Tour: San Onofre



When my co-worker told me about his favorite surf spot, he described it as “being transported back to the 60’s”. And I thought, how is that even possible? But driving down the winding roads to the coastline, seeing surf vans lined up against the sand, it felt like I was late to the party at 7 A.M. Half asleep, I paddled out in the decently warm water and ran into a group of four women. Usually, it’s hard for me to spot one girl let alone a group together. I hung on the outside and watched them catch wave after wave, some of them a full-on-girl-power-party wave. It was absolutely rad! Having a board on the shorter side made it slightly difficult to catch the rolling waves of “San O”, but I had a great time on the waves I was able to catch and an even better time watching the locals.

Once back on shore, people were playing volleyball, sitting in beach chairs, and jamming to music playing out of car speakers. And then it clicked, the community feeling that surfing was all about back in its hey-day was having a revival in this little beach town. Leaving with sand in my hair and a smile on my face, I plan on revisiting this treasured spot very soon.

Xx, E

Photo Tour: San Francisco


{click any picture to view larger}

Last weekend, I was fortunate enough to spend the Labor Day holiday in the beautiful city of San Francisco. I was ecstatic to find relief from the heat and finally try out some new outfits for fall. Continue reading