VMS Digest: Vol. VII

Those short-week Fridays sneak up on ya, don’t they? Popping in before the weekend hits to share a roundup of links to read, cool things to shop, and a few updates on what’s happening on my side of the screen. Enjoy, and happy Friday!

MEET KIM’S ASSISTANT // Don’t judge, but I’ve watched Keeping Up with the Kardashians since the beginning. I’m not exactly a Kardashian fan girl or anything like that; chalk it up to my general love of pop culture and reality television (we won’t even talk about my devotion to shows such as Bachelor in Paradise or Below Deck). Anyway, if you watch KUWTK, you’ve probably noticed Kim’s assistant Stephanie on and off. She did a great interview with Refinery 29 on how she got the position and what it’s like to work for one of the most famous families in the world. Even if you’re not a fan of the show, it’s worth a read for sure!

BLOGGING OLDEN DAYS // Ahh the good old days of blogging, when posts were effectively long form personal essays. A personal essay on why the personal essay boom is over. Or is it? My own take is that old school blogging still has a place on the Internet…it’s just not as monetizable as it once was. But I think readers still enjoy it. You?

INSTA HACKS // This post has made its rounds on the Internet, but in case you missed it: a great roundup of fun Insta Stories hacks. You need to watch this! So many great tips.

REPEAT ROSES // Recycle your wedding flowers? Yes! I read about this concept on Vogue the other day and thought it was interesting. The for-profit company Repeat Roses will coordinate pickup of wedding (or any event!) florals, then repurpose them into smaller arrangements that are delivered to places like nursing facilities, cancer treatment centers, and hospitals. While you do pay a fee for them to pick up and arrange the florals, it is tax deductible (and you have to think of it as a way to pay for the labor to get the arrangements to people who could benefit from them). A great thing to look into if you’re planning an event and hate thinking of all those gorgeous flowers literally going in the trash. If you work for a larger company that does a lot of corporate events, get this on their radar!

HILLARY, NOW // A great profile piece on what Hillary Clinton’s life has been like post-election.

FYRE NIGHTMARE // You heard about the whole Fyre Festival debacle in late April, right? If not, background here and here. Well, it’s getting even more crazy as the legal issues come to a head. You really can’t make this stuff up.

THE INTERNET IS BROKEN // So says Twitter co-founder Evan Williams. I thought it was interesting to read the reflections of someone who sorta regrets what he hath wrought on the world, as well as what he was/is trying to do with the site Medium, to fix it.

JOY IS THE RESULT OF SORROW // I’ve been meaning to share this essay for a while, and might even still put a The Word quote together from it. I read it randomly about 6 weeks ago and its message has really stuck with me: we can’t experience joy without also knowing sorrow. A great read.

POOR J.CREW // The pile on continues, but I have to say, in sharing this and other pieces with friends on and Facebook…most of you guys agree. (Update 6/5: The other shoe just dropped: J.Crew named a new CEO today.)

SUMMER SANGRIA // PSA: Whispering Angel is NOT my favorite rosé . I mean, it’s aight, I guess. My fave the last two summers has been Domaine La Colombe, a Provençal rosé that I find incredibly well balanced, extraordinarily drinkable and with surprising character. It’s also around $10-$12. I buy it at my local wine shop, K&L (they ship nationally!), but you can also find it online at other retailers if you Google. ANYWAY. I got to talking about rosé but really I wanted to share an old recipe from the blog: two easy ways to make summer sangria. I’ll sometimes make variations on this with rosé, instead of white wine!

BACK TO THE 90S // Did you see this very fun video of everything that was amazing about the 90s? I can’t believe the work that went into this, and some of the references I had totally forgotten about (Pop-up Video, anyone?). Give it a watch — there’s no way you won’t get the tune stuck in your head all day!

SLACK LOVE // I really don’t know how I ever lived without Slack. Do you use it in your workplace? It’s become such an effective way to communicate with colleagues and clients. Here’s a great profile on the company.

A MOVIE POSTER A DAY // Ok, this is so cool, especially if you’re a design lover. Some guy reimagined 365 famous movie posters and the results are amazing.

read & reading

+ Some of you might have seen on my Instagram Stories, but over Memorial Day Weekend I read The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane. I haven’t enjoyed a novel so much in a long time. I’m still thinking about it days later! I’m going to do a longer post about why I loved this book and why it’s still on my mind days after finishing, but if you’re looking for a fab, engaging read, you should check it out.

+ My book club is reading The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*ck. I dove in over MDW too; it’s good, but I think something I would’ve found more useful in my 20s. It’s worth reading if you feel like you’re at a crossroads in life!

+ Remember last year when I mentioned I was reading When in French, and how much I was loving it? It was one of those books I wanted to savor and didn’t want to end, so when I was nearly finished, I slowed down on it because I didn’t want to let it go. Well, it worked a little too well — I let too much time pass and now I have to start it over again. Ha! So I’m re-reading, and still enjoying every second. If you enjoy French culture and language and want to dive into something with fantastic prose, read it. Here’s an excerpt if you want to get a feel for it.

get in my cart

SAMPLE SALE // Hey SF friends, listen UP. The kind folks at Gilt sent me an email to let me know that their annual designer sample sale is happening two weeks from today. It’s down on Market Street, credit card only, and goes for two days. Prices are up to 80% off retail, and include designers like Valentino, Balenciaga, Chloe, and lots of contemporary labels as well (think Maje, Tibi, etc.). I’m out of town that weekend and so jealous of all of you that get to go. Tickets are $25 for the early access session on Friday, and $5 for Saturday. You can register here.

THE SLIP DRESS EDIT // I’m really into a lot of the simple, casual slip dresses I’m seeing right now. Love this silhouette from Cuyana (it comes in silk and linen, though linen is sold out right now, SAD FACE. Their off-the-shoulder version is cute too!), this cotton microrib one and this GoWeave one from Everlane, plus this pretty Topshop one from Nordstrom. Last year, I bought this dress as an easy beach cover up before we went to Hawaii, and have taken to wearing around the house at night like a caftan. I highly recommend it if you need a simple lounging dress that’s lightweight and comfortable. Plus it’s under $60!

NORDSTROM SALE // Speaking of Nordstrom, their Half Yearly Sale is on now and this Sunday is the last day! Lots of good deals to be had, like Zella leggings that are 40% off, lots of Joie shoes and tops on sale, and summery Sam Edelman shoes all discounted too. You can browse women’s clothing here, shoes here, and bags here.

SLIDE BABY SLIDE // Slides. I’m into it. Some current faves:

More Slides I’m Into:

Studio Life // Real Life

+ Last week, VMS was featured on the site Typewolf! Typewolf is a great resource if ever you’re looking to learn more about fonts and get inspired. They’ve long been in my bookmarks bar when I need a bit of inspiration, so it was a huge honor to be their site of the day. Thank you to Jeremiah for the feature!

+ In late April, we launched a new site for Olivia Jeanette. Check it out!

+ Theme Shop news! Several of you have emailed me over the past few months to ask when our new pre-made WordPress themes shop would launch. I’m happy to (finally!) report that we’re very much in motion and hoping to get a shop up and running this fall. It’s taken a bit longer than anticipated, as Lisa and I decided to really blow out the concept. The shop will actually be its own standalone brand, and we’re hoping to offer some unique add-ons, like custom plug-ins. Stay tuned — I’ll have a site and social accounts to share with you very soon.

+ I’m headed to Portland in just a couple weeks for a long weekend getaway! I’m visiting a dear friend of mine from college, and can’t wait to catch up. Having never visited Portland, I wanna know — what are your recs?

+ We had such a great time up in the tiny community of Irish Beach in Mendocino County last week/weekend. When’s the last time you had zero cell service and got a spate of missed calls and voicemails days after they actually happened? Unplugging was really great; we drove back in to town on Sunday and stopped in Healdsburg (a small town in Sonoma) and THAT felt like culture shock after so many days without seeing hardly a single soul. If you’ve ever been to Healdsburg, that should provide some context for how quiet it was on the coast. So nice sometimes, you know? I took the photo of the white roses at the top of this post at Navarro Vineyards, which produces great Pinot Noirs. Should you ever venture up to Mendocino County/Anderson Valley, be sure to stop there. It’s what I imagine Napa was like 30 years ago. You can taste all the wines for free and everything is super affordable. If you’re a Pinot fan, their Méthode à l’Ancienne wines are great.

That’s all from here! I’m hoping to pop in next week with a great new margarita recipe I recently made up. In the meantime, have a beautiful weekend!


Image Credit:

Roses photo taken by Victoria McGinley


  1. 6.3.17

    How do you like using Slack with clients? I have used it several time to collaborate with team members, but never my clients themselves. I have been thinking about it though and am curious to hear if it has made communication easier and more streamlined.

    • 6.5.17
      Victoria said:

      I really like it, but here’s a caveat: I do not give access to all clients. The clients I communicate with on there are retainer clients who are on specific plans that offer quick access to me as a perk. One particular client is actually a larger team of people, so I’m actually on their Slack team. That client has various channels dedicated to marketing, graphics, inspiration, etc., and I can of course DM with the company’s specific team members for various projects.

      For clients I put on my Slack, I’m working with them all the time on site updates or other graphics projects, so it’s an easy way to check in and nudge them when needed. It also gives them emergency access to me if something comes up on their site. We also have dedicated channels for them, which my developer is on too, for when we need broader group discussions.

      So all in all, I find it really useful, but I’d be hesitant to open it up to all clients, all the time. There’s such a thing as being TOO available, you know? ;)

  2. 6.5.17
    Erica said:

    Congratulations on your feature! I look forward to your theme shop opening this fall. I’m ready for something new!

    We spent the past two nights in the Mendocino area. I fell in love with it and we’re currently searching homes in the area for fun. We’re on a 4 week road trip with our little ones and Mendocino is at the top of our list of favorites.

    Those M.Gemi slides are on my wish list. I always look forward to your posts!

    • 6.5.17
      Victoria said:

      It’s amazing isn’t it? That’s awesome you guys loved it so much you’re looking to vacay there permanently!!

  3. 6.5.17
    Lisa said:

    I love Portland! I loved Tasty n Alder and Petite Provence for brunch. Tons of cute shops on NW 23rd. You can’t go to Portland without going to Powell’s Books downtown. I’d say you have to go to Salt & Straw but it looks like they opened one in SF (jealous!). Blue Star Donuts may be more ‘grammable, but I still say Voodoo tastes way better. If you have time to get out of the city, do the scenic drive to Multnomah Falls! Have fun!

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