Key West and Hemingway House


Photos by Drew

Navy pleated skirt: gift from Juliette Hogan
Cropped shirt (and biker shorts): American Apparel
Shoes: Madewell
’90s Coach bag: thrift store
Sunglasses: Karen Walker
Necklace: Corvus Noir (it’s the one I always wear that was made from a ’30s charm, and the morning I wore it I noticed it said “Florida Keys!”  Strange.)

Today we got back from our cruise, and while I was away I missed blogging so much that I’m doing a post on my favorite day of our trip first, even if it did happen towards the end of it.  We went to tropical places like Nassau and Freeport in the Bahamas, but my favorite town had to be Key West in the good old USA, if only because it reminded me of all the southern coastal cities I love.  Sometimes it reminded me of Charleston, but that might have been only because I’d just been there a few days before.  Really it was pretty different–a lot more tropical and colorful, sometimes kitschy, more daytime drinking and more drag shows (I didn’t go but I wanted to).  I liked how whenever the place got too loud and touristy you could just dip off onto a little side street and it’d be good and quiet, except for the random roosters that run all around the city.  Cats too.  We saw lots of six-toed cats at Hemingway’s house when we went.  Drew and I took a tour and walked all over the place and I got reminded of how I don’t like Hemingway as a person, and spent too much time wondering if Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald had ever visited or if any 1930s celebrities swam in the little pool in back.  I swore I heard a tour guide bring up Ginger Rogers when he drove his trolley past the house, but that could have just been my selective hearing.

Other things I loved about Key West?  Walking around with my family (including the cutest kids in the world, Jack–“Peach”–and Stella), old ’30s buildings, the lighthouse, and lunch at this place called Blue Heaven that made the best strawberry daiquiri I’ve ever had and Key Lime pie, of course.

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57 Comments

  1. Posted November 16, 2010 at 3:40 am | Permalink

    Oh, I think this must be one of my favorite posts ever…first off, that skirt! Its beyond lovely…is the lining quite a bit shorter than the sheer overlay? It looks to be in the photos. Seriously, I can’t imagine anything more perfectly suited to swanning about the tropics. Secondly, Hemingway does seem a bit off-putting, doesn’t he?Its hard not to be inspired by the man, what he accomplished, and the literary legacy he left, but I can’t imagine he was much fun to hang out with. That said, dear lord, the man knew how to live. And the cats are unspeakably dear.

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

      Rose, thanks so much!!! Ooh, I agree about Hemingway. I like his writing sometimes; mostly I like A Moveable Feast, but even in that (and maybe mostly in that) I get so mad. All his homophobia, showy macho-ness, gross.

  2. Posted November 16, 2010 at 3:53 am | Permalink

    Yeahhh, wicked AA top! I wore mine today. :)

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

      !! Don’t you love it?

  3. Posted November 16, 2010 at 3:54 am | Permalink

    Mmmmm…love the architecture, colours, and the breezy styling you’ve got here.

    I’ve never been a huge fan of Hemingway, but I am eternally grateful for his 6-toed kitties. My stumpy enormous Maine Coon has the biggest, most mitten-y paws ever…!

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

      You have a 6-toed cat????!

  4. Posted November 16, 2010 at 4:34 am | Permalink

    Your back :D Oh! wow! a Hogan skirt :D it is incredibly beautiful and I adore how you styled it!
    The keys sound amazing. We never went to Florida, but I will have to add it to the list for next time.
    Key Lime pie is so tasty, had never had it before I tried it in Texas! Wish we had it here.

    Ayesha x

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:09 pm | Permalink

      Thank you!!! If you come back and do go to Florida you should go to St. Augustine! Sarasota was also nice for the beaches (though you may have better in NZ) :)

  5. Posted November 16, 2010 at 7:08 am | Permalink

    This is sort of a change from all of your usual looks. I really like it! I’ve been going through a bit of a style transition and have been experimenting with longer skirts. I kind of think they look odd with my body shape but I’m pretty addicted :)

    Definitely saving this outfit for future inspiration. Oh and those cat paws <3

    Bea from A plus B

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:10 pm | Permalink

      Thanks so much, Bea! I’m the same way lately . . . I love long skirts/dresses but never love the way they look on me, but I want to wear them anyway. I’m thinking calf-length may be easier to pull off.

  6. Posted November 16, 2010 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    Oh my word I am positively SEETHING with jealousy! This is definitely one of the places that I have dreamt about visiting (in fact, it’s going on my lift list right now!). Amazing pictures!!!

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:10 pm | Permalink

      Jan, you should go!!!!!

  7. Posted November 16, 2010 at 8:30 am | Permalink

    You know what is sad? I was scrolling down the pics waiting to see some Key Lime Pie. Sigh, my priorities are all out of order.

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:12 pm | Permalink

      Ha ha, I feel the same way about sweets. I’d skip dinner for dessert every time if I could.

  8. Posted November 16, 2010 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    Love this outfit! A little bit daring with the sheer skirt, but I like it! Drapey shirt and tortoise shell sunglasses = awesome!
    Six toed cats? Wow.

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:12 pm | Permalink

      Thanks, Hannah! I felt sort of naked under the skirt even though I wore shorts underneath . . . I’m really excited to wear the skirt this winter so I can wear black tights underneath. :)

  9. Karla.K
    Posted November 16, 2010 at 10:16 am | Permalink

    I’ve been to Key West too and I just LOVED that place… Your photos are bringing back so many nice memories, I envy you! So lucky to have had such a nice trip while Paris is freezing and sun has disappeared.
    And love your shirt as well by the way :) really nice outfit, as always.

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:13 pm | Permalink

      Thanks Karla! Is it really cold in Paris? It is still pretty warm here, ugh.

      • Karla.K
        Posted November 21, 2010 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

        Yup, temperature is between 0 and 8°C every day… It’s the “grey depressing sky + not winter yet but awful weather” pack :D It kinda hurts to see people in other countries still wearing skirts with just socks haha…
        But anyway, it’s a really good excuse to go shopping – gotta find more warm clothes!

  10. Posted November 16, 2010 at 11:09 am | Permalink

    I was in Key West last spring and absolutely loved it for the same reasons. I wouldn’t want to live there today (too hot and touristy) but I imagine myself there in the 30’s complaining about my annoying pompous macho neighbor, Mr. Hemmingway. I did however write an entire series of poems while I was at his house, so I guess he’s good for something.

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:14 pm | Permalink

      Ha ha ha ha, it would be fun to complain to the police about old Ernest and get him in trouble. He does make me mad. I bet Key West was gorgeous in the ’30s.

  11. Posted November 16, 2010 at 11:25 am | Permalink

    Beautiful shots, that pie looks delicious! Glad you had a good time.

    Sally x

  12. Posted November 16, 2010 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    great look!!!lovely pictures,love the light and mood!

  13. Posted November 16, 2010 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

    What dreamy sun-drenched pictures! Just lovely. You have definitely inspired me to take a trip to Key West. Oh, and I love the long sheer skirt–so romantic!

  14. Anthe
    Posted November 16, 2010 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

    I love this post! Your outfit and photo’s made this the best post ever! (I also like your Myrtle Beach post too!
    We definitely need to take a trip to Key West!

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:14 pm | Permalink

      Thanks so much!! (and also thanks for taking us to Myrtle Beach–I loved it) :)

  15. Posted November 16, 2010 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    This is bringing back such memories looking at these! I went to the Keys for my honeymoon two years ago, and Key West was amazing (totally regret not staying there–we stayed in Key Largo thinking we’d be diving more, but the weather didn’t cooperate)! I just loved walking around there–we spent several days doing just that. I think my favorite part was people watching; between all the biker bars and drag places, it’s pretty interesting. ;) I’d love to go back one day!

    ♥ Casey | blog

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:15 pm | Permalink

      Casey, I’m so glad you liked Key West too! There were times when I wondered if I liked it–mostly on the weird touristy streets, but the buildings and so much of it was just gorgeous. Also I don’t blame you for going to Key Largo–I’d want to go there too if only for that old Bogart movie.

  16. Posted November 16, 2010 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

    hemingway! i have that book! it’s great :) hey i know i asked this before, but you prob get a lot of comments/emails; i was hoping to get the recipe for pumpkin spice cookies and the cream cheese frosting. thanks! :)

  17. Posted November 16, 2010 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

    I have a special spot in my heart for six-toed cats. They just look so sweet and goofy, and those paws are awfully fun to squeeze haha.

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:16 pm | Permalink

      I should have squeezed its paw!

  18. Posted November 16, 2010 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

    lovely !

  19. Posted November 16, 2010 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

    oooh your in my home state! oh makes me miss it so! love how your capturing it in pictures…

  20. Posted November 16, 2010 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

    Key West looks so lovely! I’d really like to go there someday and possibly visit all of those six-toed kitties, hehe!
    Your skirt is gorgeous, by the way. It looks so pretty fluttering around in the breeze!

  21. Posted November 16, 2010 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

    That pie looks insane, and somehow matches the building you show.
    Just wanted to say, I typed ‘art deco shapes’ into google and you were there in google images near the top! I think that’s something to be proud of.
    One more thing-I was particularly excited by your Ireland trip, I have never been interested before but I’m craving to visit there now.

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:17 pm | Permalink

      Robyn, art deco shapes, I love it!!! :)

      Also you should go to Ireland! I keep telling people the same thing, that I never particularly wanted to go there before this trip came up but it completely changed my mind, and I’m still kind of obsessed by it and reading Elizabeth Bowen novels one after the other.

  22. Posted November 16, 2010 at 10:32 pm | Permalink

    I love that place. it’s beautiful, isn’t it!?
    that skirt is so wonderful and you work it so well.

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:18 pm | Permalink

      It really is a beautiful place!

      Thank you! :)

  23. Megan
    Posted November 16, 2010 at 11:04 pm | Permalink

    You don’t like Hemingway either? That’s it, you are officially my soulmate and we must get (illegally) married at once.

    Anyway, I’m sure you’re already aware of Gerald and Sarah Murphy (not sure how famous they are in America – hardly anybody’s heard of them here in the UK!), but I’m re-reading a biography of them called Everybody Was So Young, and if you haven’t read it then you must do so!!

    This is about the fifth time I’ve read it, and every time I fall a little more in love with them. I thoroughly recommend it to anybody else who hasn’t read it, too! They were this amazing couple who were friends with pretty much every ex-pat American writer in Paris during the twenties (including Scott and Hemingway), and a whole load of artists, musicians and composers too.

    Enough fangirlishness, now. But you must read it if you haven’t. xxx

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:20 pm | Permalink

      Megan, ha ha, I was afraid to admit I was crazy about Hemingway but it seems like I’m not the only one! I hate how he made fun of Scott Fitzgerald and hated Zelda, and if I have to pick sides I’m on the Fitzgerald team for sure. When I was at the house I kept thinking how I need to get to the Fitzgerald museum in Montgomery soon.

      Also, that book! Thanks for reminding me about it! I’m losing my memory because I can’t remember for the life of me if I read it. I think I did and loved it, but I really need to read it again. That whole Americans abroad in the ’20s thing is so fascinating to me.

  24. Posted November 17, 2010 at 12:14 am | Permalink

    Love the material of the skirt, oh and drools over the pie. The pictures looks amazing, it has a calm and adventurous feel to it. I don’t know why, maybe because it was taken near the seaside.

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:21 pm | Permalink

      Thanks Josephine! It’s funny you say the photos look adventurous . . I guess I felt a little adventurous wearing a sheer skirt, but it was fun.

  25. Posted November 17, 2010 at 2:25 am | Permalink

    i love key west!

    key lime pie at sunset

  26. Ally
    Posted November 17, 2010 at 3:32 am | Permalink

    Oh darn, Florida wasn’t on my travel wish list at all, but now I want a photograph next to that Southernmost Point thing. Photoshop, maybe? (Kidding)

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:21 pm | Permalink

      You should!!!

  27. Audrey
    Posted November 17, 2010 at 5:07 am | Permalink

    I hope you don’t mind- I used your cat photo in my ‘Cats’ Facebook album, but I credited you!

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:22 pm | Permalink

      Audrey, I’m glad you like it ! :)

  28. Posted November 17, 2010 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

    Beautiful pictures — looks like such a great time! And Juliette Hogan makes such wonderful garments.

  29. Posted November 17, 2010 at 7:06 pm | Permalink

    looks like an absolute blast. you are lovely!

  30. Posted November 18, 2010 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

    Oh man, Hemingway kind of blows. So many of my guy friends got thousands of dollars from my university to ‘follow in the footsteps of Jake Barnes from The Sun Also Rises, which essentially meant my university gave them $3,000 to wander through Europe, go to bullfights, run with bulls and Spanish people in Barcelona during the Running of the Bulls, booze it up and hit on young French women because Hemingway/his characters did it! But maybe I’m being hard on Hemingway. He just represents everything that kind of disgusts me even though the last decade of his life was kind of interesting and his time in Cuba was even sort of compassionate in a weird way? Nonetheless, I’m so excited to see these pictures!

    I went to Key West for my first birthday in America and I remember thinking the ocean was so blue and that I was going to drown (but not unhappily.) I love love love this outfit. It’s so different from your usual outfits but I think it suits you beautifully I can’t stop wearing boxy cropped tops and I’m definitely on the hunt for the perfect sheer skirt. If only France had thrift stores…

    xx Jenny

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:26 pm | Permalink

      Jenny, ugh, I can’t believe those kids got money to do that . . . That’s pretty much why I’m not a Hemingway fan too. I’ve tried and some books aren’t as bad as others, but it’s his whole attitude that bugs me . . . . the way he writes about women makes me so mad. A Moveable Feast is the only book of his I love but I get so mad reading about how he writes so lovingly about his first wife and then at the end quickly glosses over the fact that he left her for her friend, and actually blaming the friend for it.

      I think I need to read more about his life. My sister Lauren took the tour and I guess they talked about his depression and suicide and that does maybe make him more sympathetic.

      Thanks for the compliment! Aren’t boxy shirts/sweaters the most fun to wear?

  31. my, oh my!
    Posted November 18, 2010 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

    Wow, you’re trip looks wonderful! To be honest I was quite taken aback from this look because it was so different, but in a good way! I like it!

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:27 pm | Permalink

      Thanks!! Yeah it was super different for me and I was a little nervous at first and I thought maybe my mom would make a comment about my see-through skirt but all was well!

  32. leia
    Posted November 19, 2010 at 6:46 am | Permalink

    wonderful pictures!
    may I ask what camera was used for these, or what camera you use for your pictures in general? it’s just the style of pictures I’m aiming for but still failing to achieve! sorry is this has been asked before (maybe you could do a faq btw). :)

    best wishes!

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:28 pm | Permalink

      Thanks Leia! Drew has a Canon 5D, I think, and I don’t know anything about photoraphy so couldn’t really give a good faq, but I’ll tell him you like the photos :)

  33. Posted November 20, 2010 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

    oh my, that skirt beyond beautiful. you look lovely. I am a little creeped out by the 6 toed cats though I have to admit ;)

    • Rhiannon
      Posted November 20, 2010 at 11:29 pm | Permalink

      Meg, ha ha, it was sort of startling.

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