Saturday, May 21, 2016

Blue, Blue, Blue

I wore my jeweled bug top again, this time switching out the jeans for navy pants and a longer sleeve chambray top underneath. You can see the first outfit here.
 
Jeweled Basketweave Pullover - Banana Republic
Chambray Pullover - Meijer
Seychelles "Departure" Wedges - Anthropologie





Friday, May 20, 2016

Colorful

A few posts ago, I talked about shopping on Facebook. I mentioned other groups that I was a part of, so this post surrounds the phenomenon that is LuLaRoe. LuLaRoe is a home based business (has consultants) and of course all of them have their own FB groups. There are also Buy, Sell, Trade groups that are consumers (and unfortunately, flippers). This brand is new to me, having recently been introduced to it by a couple of friends and my sister-in-law. They are most well known for their leggings and let me tell ya, I have never felt anything so soft in my life. Now I know why they have such a strong following. They also have skirts, dresses, tops, cardigans and a kids line so you can match your little person. I thought ladies were obsessed with Anthropologie - oh boy, they do not even compare to these LLR ladies!!! It's been harder for me to find/buy what I want within these groups because people are so darn fast! There have what they call "Pop Up" parties daily, with different consultants, and quite honestly I just don't have the time it takes to be involved in all of them. I've been able to snag one thing via a consultant so far, a couple of things from the buy/sell/trade group, and then it's off to eBay for this lady to find a few other things. This is an instance of where I prefer eBay to one of these groups. Search for what I want, buy it now, done deal.
 
Anyway, so far, I am loving their "Amelia" style dress which I am featuring in this post. It's a fitted bodice with pleated/flared skirt, pockets, and exposed zipper in the back. I was in need of replacing my black and white striped dress that was showing some wear. I love using pops of color with black and white, so I wore a colorful statement necklace and red cardigan. The gorgeous painted wall is on a business (unfortunately closed up) on the way to downtown Jackson. Kristen and I always pass it if we take a run to our antique booth (or lunch downtown) during our lunch hour. I've been meaning to use it for outfit photos for a while now and Kristen was happy to be behind the camera rather than my tripod (you might even see her in my sunglasses! LOL). Do you see those "orbs" in the photos? I always like seeing them in a sunny photo, but isn't it said that they are spirits? I guess it's kinda fun to think that someone from the afterlife might be judging my outfit!
 
"Amelia" Dress - LuLaRoe
Red Cardigan - consignment shop
Floral Necklace - Macy's
Jessica Simpson Sunglasses - TJ Maxx
Rampage Sandals - Meijer












Thursday, May 19, 2016

Rare Bird

A few weeks ago, I watched the documentary IRIS, about Iris Apfel. What an interesting person! Claiming that nothing she ever did in life she ever set out to do, or planned, she and her husband started out in the interior design business. Out of that, they found themselves starting up their own textile company, Old World Weavers. Over the course of their business, she decorated the White House for 9 different presidents! As she traveled the world, she picked up unique clothing and jewelry. Her signature style is like no other! She is easily recognizable with her big, round, black glasses. Her tiny frame supports not just one, but several statement necklaces! Same as her wrists, layered in bangles. Well into her 90's now, she is just as busy as ever.... curating art shows, designing window displays for posh department stores, and selling her own line of accessories (QVC) and home d├ęcor (One Kings Lane). It is said that she has one of the largest costume jewelry collections in the world. I just fell in love with her and her quirky New York apartment - what a treat it would be to have coffee with her! I really identified with her, as I love a good statement necklace, and also the fact that we both would rather have costume jewelry over real jewelry! So I thought it would be fun to round up my statement necklaces for an eye candy post! Get ready to see a whole lot of close ups of my neck wrinkles and moles - LOL!
Because of her travels, Iris's style can be very ethnic. I came close here, a few years ago, by layering 2 thrift shop necklaces.
Roberta Chiarella, sold at Anthropologie but I got on their site direct
Peacock Bib, made by me
Anthropologie - bought off the buy, sell, trade board
Target from a few years ago
Rhinestones! made by me - inspired by a Halcraft (Michael's) project
Rhinestone Bib painted by me with nail polish!
Made by me
One of my favorite Anthropologie sale finds!
Lenora Dame via Anthropologie
Lenora Dame look-a-like, made by me
Anthropologie look-a-like, made by me
Anthropologie via TJ Maxx
Anthropologie via TJ Maxx - the infamous $6 necklace!
Lenora Dame via TJ Maxx
Macy's flowers - post on this outfit coming soon...
Douglas Poon via Anthropologie - haven't posted about this one yet, but this designer likes to use lucite that looks like cut glass/crystal! Love it! Thankful I snagged this piece when it was percentage off of sale prices so it was affordable! $200 down to $40
Anthropologie
Kate Spade via TJ Maxx - an unbelievable $10!!!
J. Crew Bib via TJ Maxx - $12.99! Have you caught on yet that TJ Maxx is great for jewelry!
A few shots from my closet shelves..... Upcoming post on those fab sunglasses too! My really cool peacock lady is from Anthropologie, by artist Florence Balducci. Another bargain find - $158 down to $50.
Peacock painting by local artist with whom I am taking a class with soon. I'll post about it!

I love that I can mix in art, pictures, special trinkets, etc... in "my space", just like Iris. If you would like to know the official names to any of the Anthropologie necklaces, to search for them yourself, just contact me.


Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Buy, Sell, Trade

You might have noticed that I've used the term "Buy/Sell/Trade" in posts lately. Or, refer to the "Anthro Board or Group". So, I figured I would go into detail about how online shopping has changed - for me at least. And what better way to do that than by showcasing a cute top I purchased in that manner.
 
I know I've mentioned on here before, the 3 methods I would use when I did a closet purge:
1. sell on eBay
2. sell at a consignment shop
3. donate
 
In turn, I have no issue with shopping for myself on eBay, consignment shops, and thrift shops. Heck, you find items new with tags anyway, but used clothing doesn't bother me. As with most things though, as companies/sites grow, more problems can arise. I started to find that selling on eBay became a huge pain! It was time consuming, hidden/increased fees, and I started to have more annoying interactions with odd people. Meaning, I would send something out and the buyer would claim it was damaged (even though I knew it wasn't). I would later see them list it for 3 times what they bought it for. Or, someone would ask me to change my shipping method and then not pay me. Seriously, I don't have time for this stuff. I am a busy, working Mom. I know there are some other clothing resale sites - like Poshmark, ThredUp, etc - but I am not familiar with them.
 
I've known about Buy, Sell, Trade groups on Facebook for quite some time - you can find a group for just about any brand you like. So of course I am involved in some for Anthropologie. When I finally decided to sell for the first time, it was so easy! I just posted a picture of the item, description, and price. The first person who claims it, you invoice them through Paypal so you are both protected should it go missing during shipment. And that's it! When my first few items sold within minutes, I was hooked! I've been buying and selling ever since.
 
Now that's not to say that the same issues I mentioned above still wouldn't happen in one of these groups. But for the most part all of my interactions have been very positive. You have members that are there for a specific purpose, so you know they are serious (not trolling eBay for whatever). And, I guess the power of being blasted on social media if you are not trustworthy keeps people more honest than bad feedback on eBay, I guess.
 
I am a member of some other groups too, and plan to feature those brands/experiences soon. To be honest though, there is so much shopping at your fingertips right through Facebook now. Besides the branded/store options, any home based business is in your feed too if any of your friends sell it: Scentsy, Jamberry, Wildtree, Pampered Chef, Younique makeup, oils, 31 bags, Matilda Jane, LuLaRoe, etc...... The other day I was thinking that this is ALL I seem to see when on Facebook sometimes. Surely a welcome distraction for the political nonsense! But seriously, is this what Facebook is evolving into?
 
Of course, the groups have rules and Admins who watch over everything. But that doesn't mean some online disputes don't happen. When there is a highly coveted item being posted, there can sometimes be a fight as to who claimed it first when all of the time stamps on the comments are the same. A highly coveted item is called a "unicorn" by the way. There are some other acronyms you need to learn, if you are not familiar with this type of shopping, like: ISO = in search of, NWT = new with tags, EUC = excellent used condition, GUC = good used condition, etc....
 
Anyway, I am loving it and my only issue now is getting to the post office. My small town post office is only open 9-4 and is closed from 11-12 for lunch - doesn't work with my 8-5 schedule. So I have to go to a nearby city office, or, I've found that customer service at Meijer does post office shipping.
 
So finally, to the outfit. I got this cute octopus top on the board. It was one I missed back when Anthro sold it. I wore it last week when we took the kids to the aquarium. My "just turned 5" year old snapped a few pics (the further away ones) for me with my cell phone right before we left. I must say, he did a pretty good job! So now, when I do a post and say I got something on "the board", you will know what I am referring to.
 
Anthropologie Maeve "Fritz" Top - buy, sell, trade board
Blue Cardigan - Express (old)
Mossimo High Rise Jeggings - Target
"Val" Gladiator Sandals - Payless (last year)
Jessica Simpson sunglasses - TJ Maxx




Monday, May 16, 2016

Basics in Action

I thought I would follow up yesterdays post - Buy Again Basics - by showing all of the pieces in action together. If you include my denim post that I mentioned there, this look encompasses all that I love for an effortless look. The day that I wore this, I had a lovely afternoon shopping around Marshall with my dear friend, and then we met up with 2 more dear friends for drinks and dinner. It was a gorgeous day and so good to catch up with everyone. My friend Lisa snapped a few pictures for me - you can check out her blog here!
High Rise Jeggings - American Eagle
Ribbed Duster Cardigan - TJ Maxx (few years ago - see yesterday's post for others)
Val Gladiator Sandals - Payless (last year)
I threw on a long necklace that I made to complete the look.

I don't act silly on the blog here that often, but maybe I should do more!


Sunday, May 15, 2016

Buy Again Basics

If you were to do a search on "creating a core closet", you would probably find similar advice. Good pieces like: striped shirt, olive utility jacket, chambray shirts, little black dress, denim jacket, etc..... I never knew how versatile these items would be until I invested in them myself. I am truly a believer in the number of outfits you can put together with those garments, and am constantly inspired by other bloggers putting them together.

Recently, I started thinking about what my favorite pieces are. The ones I go to time and time again. And, the ones I buy WHENEVER I see them because I know how much use I get out of them. After putting this post together, I realized it is just tops and footwear, but you can see a post about the jeans I love here which I would categorize into this as well.

First up is a long, thin cardigan. The first one I got was the peach one (Free People via Nordstrom Rack) and then I found the tan look-a-like at TJ Maxx. I recently found some more look-a-likes at Anthropologie, Target and Sears (I will list all links below). As you can see, you can wear this buttoned up or not..... over pants or a dress. It's a nice layer that is not too bulky or hot. It's key features are: thin/ribbed knit, buttons, slouchy pockets, hi-low hem. I like paying around $20 - $30 for these. 

The Original Free People Beach Ribbed Up Maxi Cardigan - link
Anthropologie Semana Duster - link
Mossimo Duster at Target - link
Bongo Rib Knit Duster at Sears - link - my favorite find - the link is for plus sizes only, but my local store had a ton in both size categories in multiple colors!
When I was pregnant with Carson, my Mom and I were shopping at Macy's and she pulled this ruffled cardigan off the clearance rack for me. I was ho-hum about it at first, but after trying it on I fell in love. We all know there are tons of open/flowy cardigans out there..... but something about the ruching, cascading ruffle, and uneven hem really flattered the silhouette. I found that Anthropologie also sold a similar Line brand sweater under their names "Andesite" and "Quiet Moments" years ago. Since both options are long sold out, I have taken to my Buy, Sell, Trade groups and eBay to find more of these 2 in particular since I don't mind resale. I found 2 of the Anthropologie ones in the group in black and pink. And I found 2 of the Macy's ones, new with tags, on eBay in red and blue. My original tan one has gotten a few holes which I either need to repair or replace it - that is how much I love it!
A few weeks ago, I posted about how I found an Anthro-look-a-like swing tank at Meijer. Since then, I have found another exact option at Kohl's so I thought I would share the Sonoma Smocked Swing Tank too! Meijer has 4 colors and they are $22. Kohl's has 7 colors and they are $19.99 right now and then, of course, coupons. These are so easy to throw on alone or layered under something. I have already gotten so much use out of the ones I have bought!
The longer I am a Mom, the more I see myself gravitating toward flat shoes. It's just so much easier doing pickup at school, running errands, walking around the zoo - not to mention, much better for your alignment. Black ballet flats are one of those staples that will need to get replaced every few seasons. My latest favorite pick comes from Payless - the Caroline Flat to be exact. I didn't know I had tried on a wide width, until I went to check out and the lady confirmed that with me. Wow, no wonder they felt even comfier than normal! So, if you want even more of a slipper feel, go for wide! I took the little charms off of mine since I didn't really care for them.
From Payless last year, is the Val Gladiator sandal. I wear these non-stop. You can find similar criss-cross styles all over.
These Rampage sandals (mine are black) that I got on Meijer clearance when I was pregnant with Carson are another go-to pair. Again, a simple toe and ankle strap style is easy to find at a variety of stores.
I guess I do have to throw some heels in.... but not stilettos! If I do wear heels they are block or wedge style. I've posted on here before that the classic toe and ankle strap is my favorite style. This season, I found a great option at Target: Merona's Noemi Quarter Strap Sandals.
Last, but not least, my Minnetonka Mocassins. Who knew how much I would be wearing these over the years!!! Styles and color can change from season to season, but they are sold all over online and in stores. I got mine at TJ Maxx. I choose more of the boat shoe style, but I am anxious to try the traditional ones with the fringe.