Real Talk, Recap

30 For 30

WELCOME BACK

– my blog to me

It’s me, just a week or so past my 30th birthday and very excited to have written something here again.

Gonna cut right to it. I’m 30. And honestly so far, the water’s just fine. My twenties were amazing; I fell in love, twice – once with a man and another time with a city. I pushed myself into situations that were daunting and overwhelming—and by the grace of God came out the other side alive, and maybe better? I landed my dream job, two actually. Made so many friends. Stamped my passport a few times. I ran a business with my husband and friends and have learned so much that I’m now annoyingly distributing my learnings to younger women around me in an effort to spare them from heartache or frustration. They probably don’t listen, because they’re young and some lessons you just have to experience yourself.

You know you’re grown when you have a photo of you at the dry cleaners.

Your twenties are a really weird time. For me it was ten years of non-stop fun, mixed heavily with confusion, despair, and emotionally-taxing moments. And then a funny thing happened around 28 or so—a calm began to wash over me. Just like the expensive jeans I bought last year are finally starting to do what the man at Vintage Twin swore they’d do: I feel more broken in, more custom fit, and better suited to myself.

List-maker than I am, I wanted to round up 30 things I’ve learned in 30 years, so I have a place to come back to when I feel like I know nothing. Granted, most of the truths are from the past 10, but I tried to dip into the simple truths of childhood as well—because some things are just always right, at any age.

The Hi, Haleyannie 30 For 30 List

  1. CHILDHOOD TRUTH: Ice Cream is always good.
  2. Everyone needs a cathartic activity. For me it’s Shopping, Running or Weight Lifting, and watching Queer Eye—in that order.
  3. It’s 100% possible to make your dreams a reality, it takes prayer, hard work, kindness, and gratitude
  4. Connect the dots for people. Be specific with what you want to do and where you want to go. It’s easier to help someone accomplish a goal with a clear next step.
  5. CHILDHOOD TRUTH: When you are gifted (and every time you earn) money, give a little, save a little, and spend the rest.
  6. Drinking water really is important.
  7. Take your makeup off every night, no matter how tired you are.
  8. Invest in good jeans, handbags, and heels. You can fake the rest.
  9. Buy really beautiful clothes for your wedding events.
  10. When someone is speaking to you in a professional or personal setting, stop typing on your computer or looking at your phone. Eye contact is everything!
  11. When possible, travel.
  12. Show up for people, even if it means getting home late or not getting as much done on your to do list. Even if it costs money. Show up for people.
  13. TAILOR. YOUR. CLOTHES. Hem your pants if nothing else.
  14. A well-edited closet is key to avoiding outfit fatigue. Keep an outfit moodboard and make a list of clothes that you need. Don’t deviate from the list—except for maybe some stupid-good sales.
  15. CHILDHOOD TRUTH: You really should go outside and enjoy it when it’s a “really beautiful day.”
  16. Never stop trying to learn new things.
  17. You truly are enough as you are. Take in and BELIEVE the nice things that people say to you. And mean them when you say them back to others. You deserve to be confident and happy, not crippled by fear and anxiety.
  18. Stop worrying about “the plan” and the deadlines you’ve set for yourself. Work, relationships, babies, etc. all come exactly when God has them for you. Some of the best advice I’ve ever been given was to say to God, “I trust your plan for me.” So much comfort in that line.
  19. Ry taught me this one — treat your friends, colleagues, guests to coffee, dinner, drinks, etc. There’s always enough room in the bank account to be generous.
  20. It’s a blessing to have friendships that last a lifetime, and it’s okay to have some friends for just a season.
  21. Your job shouldn’t define you.
  22. Remember how generous people were to you with advice, time, and connections when you were starting out and try hard to be generous to that girl or guy DM’ing you for the same.
  23. Creativity isn’t limited to the “creatives” around you.
  24. Money comes and goes.
  25. My dad has been saying this to me for years: ENJOY THE RIDE. Don’t rush it and don’t waste it.
  26. Try the things you’ve dreamed of doing, you won’t believe how many “once in a lifetime” opportunities present themselves if you’re willing.
  27. Seriously, don’t buy cheap shoes.
  28. Assuming that everyone is an idiot until proven smart is a bad way to operate. Everyone has a story and a point of view; everyone has value to bring to the table.
  29. Sports are actually interesting.
  30. It’s impossible to sum up every necessary truth in a list. But sometimes it’s good to try.
Ready for you, baby girl.

Two weeks ago, I kissed 20-29 a very grateful, very fond farewell. And I’m looking ahead to 30-39 like it’s a mountain I have conquer. Thirty is ushering in a new challenge. In less than two months, Ryan and I will be welcoming our daughter into our little family. So I’m going to learn how to be a mom and a parent with my husband. I hope someday we get to build a house, and I hope someday I’m talking about clothes and getting dressed more than ever. Regardless of where we end up, I’m thinking many of the things I’ve listed out above are going to come back in play again, and again, and again.

Building a marriage, establishing a career, navigating friendships, dealing with failure, and embracing adventure—so many seasons weathered while I was still very much figuring out me, so what happens now that I’m a little more secure, and maybe a little smarter? Hopefully more of the same, but with less tears and a better articulation. Only, time will tell.

Happy Birthday, HH. On to the next ten.

xx

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Real Talk, Recap

Sunday, In Soho – 2018

Several months ago, Ryan and I were spending a Saturday exactly how we like to: in Soho, shopping. The sun was shining, Annie Bing was having a sale, and as we headed down Mercer towards Houston, I handed my phone over to Ryan and asked him to snap a picture of me because #content. 

Which is always super risky for me, asking for a picture of myself— seeing full-length me isn’t usually met with my rave review. 

But this time was different. He handed my phone back, and I flipped through my camera roll, looking through the images. My hair is longer, I’m standing up straight (mom would be so pleased), and I’m smiling. And my only initial thought was “I look grown up.” So simple and simultaneously monumental. There was no disappointment, no guilt from last night’s dinner or a missed run. No distress over my skin or my outfit. Everything was fine. And good. 

In my lifelong battle of me vs. me, that moment of gratification on a Sunday in Soho has been a major marker in my year. I’ve spent a lot of time waving off compliments and affirmations taking in those words as nice, but never genuine. I guess it’s a weird sense of humility but it’s really only ever held me back. It’s a cut deep enough to create rifts in my marriage and keep me from feeling like I had a place professionally. When it came to me beginning to start shaking out of that headspace, truly, this picture helped. 

This year was all about proving to myself that, yep, I am enough, and that the size of my jeans or title in my email signature really has nothing to do with it, but sure it helps validate. 2018 brought me changes that helped me finally believe I bring value to my team at work, to my friends, and most importantly to my relationship with my husband. What a simple truth, why in the world has it taken me nearly 30 years to begin to accept it? 

Now, I’m looking ahead and striving to hold my own, to not bend so easily under pushback or be quite so sensitive. If 2018 was the year I realized I do, in fact, have a seat at the table, 2019 is my year to defend it.

A really big kiss to all of my friends who have followed along with my little blog this year. I’m closing out the year with the pride of an accomplished goal resting on my heart and my eyes on 2019. Everything is gonna be fine. And good. I promise. 

xx- hh

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Fall/Winter, NYFW, Recap

Throwing Spaghetti

I have a friend who is the right hand to an acclaimed New York-based designer. Every season, I anticipate his shows and no matter how weird or unwearable, I love them. So it totally threw me when this friend informed me that it’s not uncommon for him to have NOTHING ready six, five, even four weeks before the runway show date. Uninspired or just the creative process? I call the former. And as someone who comes up with ideas for a living, I get it. More than once, I’ve sat in brainstorms where our best ideas were a dog fashion show (wait, that’s actually an AMAZING idea and should 100% be pitched) or some half-baked concept that only evokes “Yea, that’ll work.” Creative fatigue is real and we can tell when we’re phoning it in.

I think there’s three responses to brain drain: you do what you know, you take a risk, or you throw spaghetti. And as fashion month wraps, I thought I’d pull out the designers who did just that.

I DID WHAT I KNOW

These tried and true fashion forces have a vision, and they’re sticking to it. The importance of this is really illustrated in the documentary “House Of Z” which chronicles the rise and fall, and rise again of Zac Posen. He talks about how he lost sight of his vision and the detrimenta it was to his business and creative journey.

Oscar De La Renta – Isn’t this an easy choice? It is, but I really appreciate that ODLR is a gown house now and forever. There’s two relatively new designers at the helm, and while the collection didn’t seem exactly groundbreaking or fresh, it was gorgeous and full of ODLR’s greatest hits – namely A-line gowns and punchy, strapless numbers. It’s clear Team Oscar stays inspired by the past, but I’ll take it.

Carolina Herrera – I wasn’t going to choose Carolina, but I read it was her final collection to design and decided she’s the perfect example of a designer who has stayed inspired by her own iconic self. There aren’t many “youths” channeling the CH look—her famously chic, polished, and immaculately tailored isn’t big with the street style set—but the colors, shapes, and taffeta coming down her runway were truly stunning—and classic Carolina. She’ll be surpassed by none other than (gasp!) the ex-lead designer of Oscar De La Renta, so fear not, the dresses will still be on point.


I TOOK A RISK

“You know what, I just got out there and tried.” These are the designers that constantly zag when everyone else is zig-ing.
Gucci – If you know me, you know my love for Gucci in recent years runs oh-so-deep and oh-so-wide. When I first watched this season’s show, I thought I’d position it as a spaghetti, but then I read about Alessandro’s inspiration for the collection and changed my mind. Is this just excellent BS? If it is, he sold me. Yes yes, people carried heads down the runway and that is freaking WEIRD, and I’m crying because the looks are SO. OVER. THE. TOP., but someone also carried a little green lizard and that redeemed everything for me.

Dolce & Gabbana – Get ready people, Dolce drones are now a thing and officially ruling the world. Relying on technology is risky enough, but it’s just so cheeky to nod to the fact that we don’t even need models anymore to show runway collections. And when the girls did hit the catwalk, they were Spanish divas layered in all kinds of crazy. I’m kindof confused, but also kindof obsessed.

I THREW SPAGHETTI

I had a history teacher who would give us participation points for throwing spaghetti, i.e., just talking. Sometimes you’d stick your neck out and cobble together an answer that would get a nod of approval, and other times, a laugh and, “You’re throwing spaghetti, but nice try.” These people did that, but with fashion…and it pretty much worked. 

Saint Laurent – Hedi Slimane is long gone from Saint Laurent and it seems like some of the black magic that is YSL is gone. Anthony Vaccarello is doing his own dark thing now, and also his own floral thing, I guess. But I’m calling Spaghetti because the collection just seemed so…random: hats, architectural dress, so much leather that I’m worried about our cow population. The worst thing for me is the knitted belt with the rhinestone, ahem, Swarovski crystal, centerpiece. There was a lot, and although I’m not into it, apparently sales are up, so undoubtedly other people are.

Moncler – Honestly, Moncler gets the gold because they dropped a wintry, puffy bomb at Milan fashion week. Comprised of 8 mini-collections that will “drop” on a month-to-month schedule, this collection was LIT. Seriously, it’s heating up in here, and it’s not just because I’m shrouded in a floor-length Moncler parka. They threw the spaghetti, and it stuck.

 

 

Stay risky out there people.

xx – hh

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Casual, Cold Weather, Color, Real Talk, Recap, Shopping Guide

What Am I Even Wearing – Part 2

A few weeks ago, I started a blind trek into my fall and winter wardrobe, feeling a little under-prepared and undereducated on what’s hot and trendy for Autumn 2016. In need of a little fashion inspo-I turned to the street style stars of fashion week to figure out just want to put in my cart during my late night shopping sessions. I’m thrilled to announce that the 90s are alive this fall, but so are some new looks. I’ve rounded up my top picks to make your weekend trips to the mall a little more streamlined.

TREND 4 – WEIRDLY-SHAPED SWEATERS

asym-sweater

Photo Cred: Vogue.com

Thank goodness for the asymmetrical sweater, because its sister-knit, the regular sweater, really needed an upgrade. Be on the lookout for splits, cutouts, and dangling hems on brightly hued, deeply saturated knits. Last winter, I finally ponied up the cash for an Equipment sweater and it quickly became my go-to (as evidenced here and here), so I recommend shelling out a little more for a squishy-soft designer piece. But if that’s not your jam, try out a steal option.

 
TREND 5 – SAY IT WITH SLEEVE

sleeve-stripes

Photo Cred: Vogue.com

If summer was about the shoulder, fall is all about the sleeve. The statement sleeve is here and taking every mass retailer by storm. Some tops are tied up, laced up, or cinched, while others bell out or puff in the middle. For the first time in a long time, we have the opportunity to express ourselves with the bottom portion of our arms (FINALLY, amiright?) and I find that novel and exciting. If you’re gonna say something, say it with a sleeve that screams, “NOTICE MEEEEEEE.” Choose wisely how much you spend, or just be careful when eating large bowls or soup or reaching by open flames.

Quick shop = Tibi or F21

TREND 6 – PANTS YOU CAN REALLY LIVE IN

flowy-pants

Billowing bottoms are totally what’s up for fall, as as a women with hips and a booty, I’m thrilled. Skinny jeans aren’t going anywhere, but I’m so aware of my lack of stick-skinniness when I wear them. Say it with me: Wide leg pants that float away from your widest part are your friend. I live in a black trouser from Zara and can’t wait to take their cold-weather counterpart for a spin. A light-colored hue will keep chunky sweaters feeling too heavy. Pro-tip: A heel is best with these pants so your ankles still look lean and pretty. If you’re a flat devotee and you pick up some full-length wide trousers, have your tailor hem your pants so there is no break; this will keep your legs from looking stumpy or frumpy.

 

TREND 7 – BLOCK PARTY

booties

Photo Credit: Vogue.com

This season’s boots go in two extremes: high or low. You can either opt for the sexy over the knee boot—highly recommend this – it really will boost your morale!—or the street smart block heel bootie that literally goes all day and doesn’t bat an eye (if booties had eyes that is..). Having nearly walked holes into my Stuart Weitzmans, I’m seeking out a relief hitter from Rag and Bone, but these nearly identical ones really gave my designer dreams a run for their money. I love the block heeled boot because you get the lift of a pump, but the mobility of a flat. #cantstopwontstop

TREND 8 – SLIDE TO THE LEFT

slides

The uber trendy slides are the perfect way to show everyone that the world is your bedroom. These super-chic, difficult to walk in slides a la Gucci’s Alessandro Michele are popping up everywhere. They certainly have curb appeal don’t they? Shop at Saks for a pair, or head to Zara, to join the club of ladies slip, slidin’ around.

Happy shopping! I can’t wait to see the fabulous outfits my friends start putting together; and with the temperature dropping every day, I’m pretty sure I won’t have to seek inspiration from social media much longer. We’re taking it to the streets! Be sure to follow my  N E W Pinterest board for more fall-fashion picks.

Stay cozy, lovelies.

xx – Haley

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Award Show, Night Out, Nighttime Look, Real Talk, Recap

HHA Fashion Bracket: The Ultimate Prize

Is it just me or is it boring in here? Imagine my heartbreak as I turned on the red carpet coverage on Sunday night and…nothing. I am so sorry Hollywood, but you guys phoned it in this year. So many of the gowns just seemed uninspired, drab, or dated. I’m sorely disappointed, but then again, not every year can be 2014 aka The Year of Lupita.

I am, however, very pleased to relay that I have crowned my fashion bracket winners and as an added bonus, I’m including a lightning round Best and Worst Dressed list from The Academy Awards, because a little glitz-meets-snark never killed anyone.

First order of business: our winners. The HiHaleyannie Fashion Bracket Best Dressed Awards go to:

BRIE LARSON and EDDIE REDMAYNE and also EDDIE’S PREGNANT WIFE HANNAH!!!!

final bracket

My most sincere and envious congratulations to you three. Admittedly, I didn’t expect to give this award to a couple, but the Redmayne’s really brought it this year and there was simply no denying their power-couple prowess. Like any longtime actor finally relishing her red carpet run, Brie Larson took risks with her gowns, but goodness, she stood out. We didn’t have Lupita this year, but I certainly enjoyed The Year of Larson.

Eddie Redmayne + Hannah Bagshawe

Screen Shot 2016-03-01 at 10.44.06 PM

Is there anything better than a couple in McQueen? Not this year! Even though Eddie mentioned that he was “sweating” in his velvet tux, it was worth a little dehydration. His perfectly cut suit made him look 7 feet tall with ease. Meanwhile, Hannah rocked out her “maternity gown” with a stunning halter neck covered in jagged gold. Power couples, take note: Black Is Back!

Brie Larson

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Brie Larson in Gucci

Upon my first glance, I thought the tasteful, traditional fit of this A-Line gown was too easy to be so good. But a second look sold me. This striking blue gown cinched with a show-stopper belt, reigning in layers of textured, expertly-draped pleats, made this up and coming starlet shine brighter than the rest. Remember when JLaw showed up to her first Oscars a few years ago in the fitted, red Calvin Klein dress and everyone was all, “Who’s THAT?” This is that moment, all over again, for Brie Larson.

With our winners happily basking in the glow of our approval (#Millenials), let’s take a look at who gave them a run for their money in a lightning fast round of BEST DRESSED!

Olivia Wilde – Most Current

Screen Shot 2016-03-01 at 10.46.32 PM

In a phrase: WOAH. Like, yes. Pleats and chokers FTW.

Daisy Ridley – Best in Chanel

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Daisy Ridley in Chanel Haute Couture and Christian Louboutin

In a phrase: Perfectly executed hemline. A tad old for her, nothing a slick-backed bun can’t fix.

Charlize Theron – MOST MOST

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Charlize Theron in Dior Haute Couture

In a phrase: Okay ladies, let’s get in formation. Couture by Charlize.

Saoirse Ronan – Best Entrance

Screen Shot 2016-03-01 at 10.44.17 PM

Saoirse Ronan in Calvin Klein

In a phrase: “I may be new here, but I totally know what’s up.”

And real, real quick, can we gently discuss these brave souls who were, as they say in sports, a swing and a miss? WORST DRESSED

Jared Leto – Worst Miss

Screen Shot 2016-03-01 at 10.46.24 PM

Jared Leto in Gucci

In a phrase: PUFF

Sarah Silverman – Worst Fit

Screen Shot 2016-03-01 at 10.46.12 PM

Sarah Silverman in Zac Posen

In a phrase: Spray tans don’t fix everything.

Alicia Vikander – Weirdest Choice

Screen Shot 2016-03-01 at 10.46.47 PM

Alicia Vikander in Louis Vuitton

In a phrase: Melted butter popcorn.

Ahh, doesn’t that sass feel good? And with that, let’s kiss goodbye this award season! Thanks for following along. Next week, I’ll recap Fashion Month, so get your notebooks out—you’re gonna want to write this stuff down. 😉

Cheers y’all,

Haley

All photos via Vogue.com

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Award Show, Night Out, Recap

It’s Heating Up

The 2016 SAG awards have come and gone leaving nothing but some great memories, a few forgotten sequins, and, of course, updates to the HiHaleyannie Fashion Bracket! For such a subdued award ceremony—seriously, compared to the Golden Globes, the SAG awards are like a child’s birthday party, so thankful and G-rated—the stars really brought laid it out on the red carpet.  There were a few twists this round, but in all honesty, I was quite pleased with the results. Take a look at the standings:

full bracket 2

Our final two for the ladies are:

Alicia Vikander

Screen Shot 2016-02-11 at 10.40.43 PM

Photo Cred: Vogue.com

I’m not going to lie. I didn’t want her to win and I didn’t want her to be a frontrunner. I wanted her out the first round. Personally, I’m not a huge fan of her “films”, but Alicia’s red carpet run with Louis Vuitton has been too good to ignore. She did kick off the season at the Critics Choice Awards in Mary Katrantzou’s striking beaded gown, and now, this LV shift throws us for a loop. At first glance, it’s an unassuming number, but turn to the side and BOOM, that sky-high slit gives the perfect amount of leg. *Insert Leg Up On The Competition Joke Here*

Brie Larson

Screen Shot 2016-02-11 at 10.42.44 PM

Photo Cred: VanityFair.com

As previously mentioned, sometimes the red carpet is inconsistent. Where was JLaw at the SAGs? I had her slated to win, but then she has the nerve to NOT SHOW UP to the SAGs?? Did she not consider my bracket?! The great news is that Brie Larson very much DID show up, and very much DID slay in this grecian Atelier Versace gown that loops, dips, and drapes in all the right places. Shout out to JLaw for tagging BLar back into the bracket. I may just grant you a pass card back into the bracket if you show at the Oscars. We’ll talk later.

And our final two for the men:

Eddie Redmayne (& Hannah Bagshawe)

Screen Shot 2016-02-11 at 10.42.17 PM.png

Photo Cred: Vogue.com

Eddie wore his Dior tux like it was his first, last, and only tux. He stunned. But really, his expectant wife, Hannah, was super clutch. It’s been said many times that behind every great man is an even greater woman. But in Eddie’s case, she’s right next to him, and she’s wearing high-impact, floor-length sequins.

Ryan Gosling

Ryan-Gosling-SAG-Awards-2016-1.jpg

Photo Cred: Popsugar.com

I hate to say that Ryan Gosling has this in the bag, but like, he’s got this in the bag. The Gos is so confident in his looks that he doesn’t feel the need to rock the red carpet these days. Cheer up, shy guy, we’re all still staring at you in that Gucci midnight blue suit anyway.

Clearly, this isn’t over yet. Literally, it’s not because The Academy Awards are not until February 28th. Happy Valentine’s Day y’all, I’ll wrap this up in March!

 

Cheers,

Haley

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Award Show, Night Out, Nighttime Look, Recap

A V. Involved Fashion Bracket

Queue up the DVR, because we are in the middle of award show season, babies! As someone who loves the satisfaction of checking experiences of a list scrawled in the back of their planner, I kind of, totally live for award season. Every winter, society simply GIVES us a dozen movies we should probably see so that we can have a relevant and exciting conversation about Leonardo DiCaprio in the checkout line at lunch. 

But the real reason I love award season is, DUH/OF COURSE, the fashion.  So much money, thought, work, and planning goes into the outfits of the stars that I feel we really owe it to the “teams” of the stars (if not the stars themselves) to pay attention. But doesn’t that whole best dressed/worst dressed scenario feel a little played out? I mean, fashion police feels a little tired, am I right? Not gonna lie, my super snarky alter-ego comes alive when assessing this category so in effort to be kind and carry on, I’ve come up with a new idea:

Introducing the BEST DRESSED BRACKET

Ladies and Gentlemen (and let’s be honest, I mostly mean ladies), here are your contenders:

bracket

Top Row (L to R): Rachel McAdams, Alicia Vikander, Bryce Dallas Howard, Abigail Spencer, Brie Larson, Cate Blanchett, Jennifer Lawrence, Julianne Moore | Bottom Row (L to R): Oscar Isaac, Ryan Gosling/Brad Pitt, Jacob Tremblay, Orlando Bloom, Eddie Redmayne, Matt Damon (with wife), Leonardo DiCaprio, Jason Statham (with RHW)

 

This year, I’m matching up some of the shiniest and most dazzling movie and TV stars to determine who really is the most fabulous of them all. We’re about halfway through the season so I’ve already pulled my favorites from The Golden Globes and The Critics Choice Awards. On Saturday, we have the SAG awards and then the mothership, The Academy Awards, brings our sports-meets-fashion-face-off to a head on February 28th.

full bracket

Note: An Inordinate Amount of Time Was Spent on This

A few things to note:

  • This is entirely subjective and hinges on my own editorial eye and personal preferences.
  • I am still sorting out the rules of this as I go. Let’s just say, if Rachel McAdams doesn’t show up at the SAG awards, I’ll figure out a replacement player. Sports teams have subs, so we can too.
  • Feel free to follow along. If you are really a fan, you can pull this bracket image off into a word doc, print the doc, and show your work-mates. They’re really gonna get into it. I think. I promise.
  • Ryan Gosling and Brad Pitt are currently a co-team of their own because apparently they are now too major to walk the Step and Repeat.
  • Bonus points if you share, like, or tweet about this program. Sharing is caring.

Happy DVR-ing everyone, don’t start without me. I’ve got the popcorn.

– Haley

 

Photos c/o: HarpersBazaar.com and Eonline.com

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