Tuesday, April 30, 2013

What I Wore: Charleston Edition

How do you feel about street style pics? I enjoy seeing the different ways people interpret fashion or a particular stylish piece but I feel like a damn fool posing for a picture by myself. Am I the only one who feels that way? 

Street style self-portrait (in my comfort zone)

I certainly don't think of myself as a model or even photogenic but I do likes my stylin'. I've decided to suck it up for the good of the cause and bring you What I Wore: Charleston Edition. 

Day 1, Part 1: Touristy sightseeing and shopping 
Key: Feeling comfortable whilst looking impossibly fresh and fabulous
Hindsight: Wish I had gotten a spray tan. 

J. Crew jacket/ J. Crew tee (similar)/ J. Crew shorts (similar)/ 3.1 Phillip Lim handbag (gifted)/ Sperry Topsiders (gifted)/ Stella & Dot Renegade bracelets with vintage bracelet and gifted scarf

Day 1, Part 2: Fancy and fun dinner and drinks at Fulton Five and Market Pavilion
Key: Looking cute without trying too hard
Hindsight: I wanted to wear wedges but wish I had brought a slightly less tall and dressy pair. (Maybe these.)

Day 2: More sightseeing, shopping and eating
Key: Being comfortable even though I just ate my weight in delicious Southern food
Hindsight: My white jeans are way too long for flats.

Tory Burch top/ Joe's Jeans/ Sperry Topsiders/ 3.1 Phillip Lim handbag

Okay, enough about me and more about Charleston! What a gorgeous place. Every turn you take in downtown Charleston grants a chance for a photo opp. I did my best to edit my photos and then edit, edit, edit some more. Here is some Southern eye candy.

Along the battery

Fabulous door of Charleston

Most amazing burnt orange color

Pale pink + brick red + rust = new favorite color combo

 Fierce feline doorknocker juxtaposed with sweet, scrolly ironwork

Deco dimensional letters

Scalloped windows

Rainbow Row

I want to go back! What a beautiful place rich in history. My beau and I had a hard time leaving on Sunday but duty calls. A big thanks to my friends- bloggy and reality- who offered me suggestions and pointed me in the best directions. The trip wouldn't have been the same with your awesome tips! 

Now, how do you really feel about street style pics on this blog? 

Friday, April 26, 2013


Has anyone else felt super ADD this week? I cannot concentrate at all! Even if I take a few minutes at work to do a little web surfing, I can't finish reading the article, writing the email or checking out whatever the heck it is I've checked out. I've even gone to write a blog post several time this week and ended up publishing one. What gives?

Maybe it's best if I just put some of my random musings onto one page and then get back at it! Here are some goodies that have been taking up space in my mind and quite possibly contributing to my lack of...what's the word...concentration.

Part of this problem could be attributed to the fact that I turn 30 on Monday. When people see the candles on my cake this year, they'll be like...

Hope you have a great weekend!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Wednesday's Look For Less: Tie Dye Jeans

Happy Wednesday, everyone! Today might feel like a bit of a mind bender for some of you out there but bear with me. It's going to be fun and exciting.

You're probably well aware by now that printed pants aren't going anywhere. Fun patterns and bold colors on your lower limbs have become all the rage. One fun and different take on the look is the tie dyed jean. I know- I know- tie dye invokes visions of Woodstock or that weird 70s phase you went through. But let's take a look at some fresh and fun examples of how the uber chic style their tie dye today first.

Olivia Palermo via Pinterest

Drew Barrymore via Denim Blog

 Fashion Blogger Devon Rachel via Pinterest

 via Pinterest
via Vogue UK

When you wear tie dye jeans with sophisticated shoes and a tailored jacket, the look suddenly becomes effortlessly polished rather than festival ready. A structured bag and clean hair and make-up only add to the overall effect. Of course a chunky Stella McCartney sweater, like the last photo shows, makes a great pairing to tie dye jeans for the weekend. So when it comes to your trendy take on tie dye jeans, to you spend or save?

The two pairs of pants above have almost the exact same shape and style. The only difference is the slight variation in pattern. Can you tell which ones will set you back and which ones will get you out the door? The pair on the right are Armani Exchange and ring up at $98. The pair on the left can be purchased at Tory Burch for $100 extra- $195 to be exact. I'm not sure which pair I would choose because I find that every spring and summer I gravitate toward tie dye. For me, investing in a great print would keep me in business year after year...as long as they fit. But if this experience will be your first in the modern era of tie dye, then ease in with a cheaper pair and see how you feel. 

What do you think? Will you take the plunge into today's tie dye this year? 

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Look For Less: Floral Dress

Even if you're not a girly girl, something about spring incites the need for a flowery dress. A moodier floral- as in your traditional print on a dark background- toughens up the look so that the feel is less little girl and more sassy lady. While Rag & Bone debuted its print for Resort season back in January, more options at lower prices have rolled out since. So would you splurge or save?

These two dresses are both excellent options. The frock on the right is the original for this year by Rag & Bone and rings up at over $300. The dress on the left from Piperlime is basically a bargain at $69 compared to its counterpart. 

When warm weather rolls in and you have a closet full of nothing to wear, a cute floral frock is always your best option. Throw on a cotton blazer and your look is office appropriate. Or buckle into your strappy sandals and you're ready for a sunny brunch. Whether you bet high or low is up to you!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Double Duty

Pieces that pull double duty get a big jump up to the front of the wish list in my book. Whether for my wardrobe or for home, an item that can serve more than one purpose is something worth buying. I'm loving these fresh warm neutral pieces below for vamping up my house and closet this spring. Here's why... 

 It's an indoor/outdoor piece that you can plop down on your porch or carefully lay in your living room. 

Would make a wonderfully chic and functional work station but it's also equally as useful as a bedside table. 

 With sleeves rolled up and tail untucked, throw on with a comfy pair of cotton shorts and your good to run around town. But tuck it into a white wrap skirt and add a big gold necklace and the look is ladylike perfection. 

On one hand they are a daytime staple; on the other, the red heel makes them an evening show stopper. 

I love this swingy peplum sweetness but I think I would toughen it up with leather or waxed shorts on a day when I'm particularly snarky. :) 

It's all business when put in the study but if you place it next to your bed, it's the best reading lamp money can buy.

When you start shopping for your house or your spring staples, think outside the box and you might find a certain splurge is worth it...or a save is the ultimate buy! Do you use any items in unconventional ways?

Friday, April 12, 2013

Saturday Sales

Did you catch my recent rave about Kate Spade's new line, Kate Spade Saturday? Good news- today and tomorrow everything on the Saturday site is 25% off with the code S13FFUS. 

If I happened to be shopping, these might end up coming home with me...

Better yet, everything on the Kate Spade site is ALSO 25% off! With a little discount, maybe you could pick up goodies like these??

And that ain't all, y'all. Henri Bendel is ALSO doing a 25% off sale now through Sunday with the code FFSPRING13. 

I have always loooved Bendel's bags...

Get it while the gettin's good...and let me know if you do!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Wednesday's Look For Less: Workout Wear

If you know me and many of my Wilmington friends, then you know Pure Barre is our latest obsession. Before Pure Barre opened up here in October, I had two pairs of Lululemon pants (and one pair was a hand-me-down). I have just about worn these pants to death: two pairs of pants + class three to four times a week = you do the math. I would like to get at least one more long pair but Lord knows I do NOT feel like spending $100 on stinkin' workout pants!

The stars aligned one day when a fellow PB participant had on black leggings with NO recognizable logo/emblem/commercial trademark on them yet they were just as great fitting as Lululemon. What on earth could they be? I stopped her after class to politely be nosy and she told me they were Zella and that she swears by them. Have you ever even heard of this brand? I have not. So on to Nordstrom I went and...

Can you tell the difference? Okay, so black leggings might be black leggings. The proof is really in the performance. At any rate, the pair on the right are by Zella and only cost $52. The Lululemon pair on the left ring up at $98. Sheesh! For nearly half the price, it's worth trying out this newfound option. I ordered a pair today and will be happy to report the results if you are interested. I love Lululemon as much as the next yogi but a girl's gotta protect her wallet every now and then too.

Have you found any other great workout wear that doesn't break the bank? Let me know! With summer on the way, it's time to get serious about workouts...a new pair of pants might be a great way to start.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Your Next Necklace, Ac-CORD-ing To Me

You may have caught a post here last month featuring a neon rope and brass necklace. This spring, I'm loving that casual yet interesting approach to accessories but when I started my search for a casual rope necklace, I discovered a world full of $400+ necklaces made out of cord. Seriously?? For that much, I'll get something real (and tiny) from Tiffany... 

Enter the need for a DIY project. It was refreshing to see a good-looking piece made by hand for less than $30 on Honestly WTF. I set out last weekend to tackle the project and document my results for you...

What you'll need:
3 mm cord 
(I bought mine at Lowe's but it is also available at REI.)
12-15 brass compression sleeves- 3/8" 
(Guess what- that's a plumbing piece...not hardware...who knew?)
.8-1 mm chinese knotting cord
(These suckers are called all kinds of weird things but I found some at Hobby Lobby or you can buy online.)
12 mm x 16 mm brass cord end caps
(Could only find online.)
2-3 jump rings
1 lobster clasp
gel super glue
needle nose pliers 

First, cut your cord to 32" length. I wanted to make three concentric (lack of a better word?) necklaces so I cut mine at 32", 30" and 28". I used about six lengths for one necklace.

Slide compression sleeves down the cord. Space as desired.

Tightly wrap knotting cord starting underneath a compression sleeve and upward. Super glue it on the ends and cleverly disguise bead with the compression sleeve. The knotting cord helps secure the rope to prevent puckering and such when you wear it. 

After you've done all of your desired wrapping, trim the fuzzy ends of the cord. Place a bead of super glue inside an end cap and place it on the ends of the rope. Let it set for a few seconds. You may have to add extra glue if pieces start popping out of the cap. 

Place jump rings through the holes on the end caps and secure with pliers. Add lobster clasp through one jump ring and VOILA!

Three fun rope necklaces NOT for $400! Are they the absolute neatest, most perfect pieces ever? Certainly not. But practice makes perfect and they'll look better the more you make them. For ten percent of the retail cost of others, I think I'm okay with a little imperfection.

What about you? Do you like this look? Would you try this DIY? 

Monday, April 8, 2013

It's Not Coachella. It Is Avett Brothers.

Maybe a four-day music festival just isn't your scene anymore. It's certainly not mine. While my Bonnaroo hankerings have wained, a good show is still something to be enjoyed...and something for which we must plan outfits. 

Luckily Coachella inspiration has started to grace the front pages of many style sites and blogs. It's perfect timing for those of us attending the Avett Brothers show here on Friday as part of the North Carolina Azalea Festival. Today's outdoor venue inspiration comes from queen of the boho scene, Kate Bosworth, and hottie with a body Rosie Hutington-Whiteley. If I can manage to look one-tenth as good as they do, I'll be satisfied. 

Why you should consider Rosie's look:

1- Booties at an outdoor concert are an invaluable asset. They push those of us under 5'5" up high enough to hang with the rest of the gang but are still comfortable enough to stand up and shake it for two hours. Plus, they keep your toes clean in the midst of spilled beers and dropped nachos- whether you are tall or short.

2- Shorts and a long-sleeve shirt are a rare sight in North Carolina. It's either hot or cold here so we're either in jeans and a fleece or shorts and a tank top. But rolling up your sleeves while the sun is still high is much more comfortable than pulling a Huckleberry Finn and hoisting up the hem of your jeans. When the sun goes down and the chill sets in, you'll be happy to have a long sleeve...not so happy to be sweaty in jeans.

3- Denim shorts are your best friend at an event like this one. You certainly don't want to be manhandling a purse so pockets are key. Denim is also indestructible so say the mood strikes you and you need to gator on stage, you're in good shape- your jeans shorts will stay on and wash well.

Why you should consider Kate's look:

1- We are talking about North Carolina here. A shower could pop up at any minute and the weather man is calling for them on Friday. Looking chic in the rain is as easy as your wellies and a jacket. Just make sure the layer you wear underneath is lightweight and comfortable because you'll be otherwise constricted.

2- A pile of fun necklaces is a no-brainer and looks cute layered beneath the jacket. Be careful not to pop yourself in the face though as you jump up and down. 

3- My plea for pockets and closed-toe shoes again: You'll be so super duper happy to go hands-free and keep your cell phone, camera, cash and keys contained in one or two sturdy pockets. You'll also be happy to go home with clean feet unless you consider dirty toes part of the experience.

Sunglasses in the rain optional.

Are you going to any outdoor shows or festivals this year? Hopefully some of these style tips will help you no matter where you are or who you're going to see!

Friday, April 5, 2013


via Entertaining House

What kind of coffee table do you use in your home? I'm in need of a new table- one that I can kick my feet up on, place drinks, withstand dog slobber...in other words, I need something not too precious. I find myself gravitating toward lucite. How do you feel about it? 

Lucite is pretty much invisible. 
Keeping the look light is key in a teeny tiny living room like mine. 

Lucite seems to look best mixed with more traditional pieces. 
Good thing since my living room furniture is fairly trad.

The space underneath the table ends up being perfect for storing magazines, hardback books and ottomans. 
Unexpected storage is huge when space is at a premium. 

Best of all, lucite tables come in a wide range of prices. 
You can buy a small side table for $70 or a fancy trunk for $1000. I'll go for the $70 option...

via Cottage Living

 via Bijou Boheme

 via Sanity Fair

via Sam Allen


Since lucite is so hot right now, I dare call it trendy.
Will I look back at these photos in 10 years or even 5 years and be over it? 

Just like glass or wood, lucite can scratch.
Another reason why I wouldn't invest a bunch in this type of table.

Big dogs wag big tails, knocking over perfectly placed accessories on low tables.
Should I stay away from a coffee table all together until I have a bigger house?

Those are all of my crazy thoughts. What do you think? How do you solve the small room/big dog/need for table space dilemma? I'm all ears!