As one of the founding partners of NEAT Method, Ashley Murphy has seen a lot of closets, a ton of products, and figured out ways to keep things simple and well... neat! I am still amazed at what she was able to do in my home. This chic Chicago mama-to-be shares with us her personal style and her favorite things.
I am originally from Ohio, but have been a Chicago girl for quite some time now. I actually left for a brief couple of years to live in San Francisco, but always knew I would be getting back to my Midwestern roots sooner or later.
|Ashley & Molly|
While in San Francisco I was lucky enough to meet Molly Graves, my now business partner and lifelong friend! We successfully launched a professional organizing company, NEAT Method and are thrilled to be officially in the Windy City! We figured since San Francisco wasn’t enough, why not take on another city…possibly even two (Minneapolis is in the works…sshhh!!)
And…on top of getting settled back in Chicago and running NEAT, I should also probably mention I am expecting my first baby this October. Ahhhh!!! Luckily, Type A people do best with a full plate!
So given my current belly situation, I am fashionably inspired by anyone who can make pregnancy look chic. Unfortunately, the timing of my pregnancy has aligned with celebs such as Snooki. Sooo I’m trying my best to come up with outfits that don’t make me look like I’m giving birth to a full size human. I’ve always kept my style simple and might have a slight obsession with basics. I tend to purge things that I no longer wear, so therefore I hate buying things that are too trendy to last for more than a season. I guess it’s proof that I actually practice what I preach to our NEAT Method clients.
I can always find something to impulse buy at Roslyn and Krista K in Chicago. I never online shop, because why deal with the hassle of returns? I actually only own one pair of maternity clothes: a pair of J Brand 3411 Maternity Skinny Leg Jeans. I am just having the hardest time getting into the whole maternity clothes thing. However, I might be getting to the point that a size bigger isn’t going to work for my ever-expanding belly!
Like my wardrobe, I am also fairly simple in the makeup department. If you were to see what I sported in college, you would be thanking me for getting over the makeup obsession and going with a more “natural” look. I tend to typically throw on a little eye shadow and mascara, finished with some powder and blush and call it a day. For a night on the town, I will spice it up with some eyeliner and fun gloss.
Turns out my skincare routine isn’t quite as simple as my wardrobe. This might be where some of my OCD tendencies shine through. It basically stems from the fact that when I moved to SF, my skin completely changed and I officially had adult acne (did I mention that I’m a bit of a drama queen??). I immediately went into panic mode thinking I would never make any new friends looking this way, which is when I discovered the most amazing medical Aesthetician in the world, Kim from Skin Salvation. I followed her advice and my skin cleared up immediately. With a few modifications, here is what she taught me and I literally do it every morning and every night. And yes, my friends and family make fun of me…but hey, at least I have friends now!
p Use a clean washcloth to wash your face every morning and every night. No really…a new one every time.
p Rub an ice cube all over your face after every wash. Yep…I really do this too. And in fact, I think it feels amazing.
p In the a.m. – apply eye cream and SPF
p In the p.m. – apply eye cream and a moisturizer
As for my fitness regime? Oh gosh…do we have to talk about fitness these days!? Does standing all day on the job for NEAT count as exercise? I never thought I would be the pregnant girl that couldn’t keep up with her regular fitness routine, but as it turns out…I just can’t. Without a baby on board, I typically am a runner and Pilates girl. For now however, let’s just call exercise on a good day: working, followed by some walking and light stretching.
And…my other interesting life choices…I swear by the Whole Foods on North Ave in Chicago. It is the size of a small city, and I can get anything I could ever want all while enjoying a glass of wine! Well, except in my current state…do you think a girl can grocery shop, carry a crying child, and hold a glass of wine all at the same time? Lets hope so cause I’m only a few months away from doing so!
I’m mostly a vegetarian, but also not afraid to take a bite out of a burger from time to time. I don’t drink milk, only almond milk. I’m a little weird about taking vitamins and will only do so with a glass of juice. I also hate taking medicine, and avoid it at all costs.
If you are still reading this…I should consider you a friend! So, thank you!
Feel free to check out NEAT’s blog to learn more OCD habits!