Sunday, October 28, 2012

Statement Sweater - Vrooom!

Vroooom? More like Brrrrrr!!!! I braved the cold and windy weather on casual Friday to take pics outside. Statement sweaters seem to be popping up everywhere this season, and here's the story behind the one that I chose:
About a month ago I got a $20 coupon from The Limited. Yes, you read that right - no minimum purchase or amount off when you spend upwards of $100 - just a flat out $20. I must admit I hadn't shopped at The Limited in some time, but a mall close to me had just done a store remodel. The last time I was in there, I was impressed. And others were too. In fact, a lady mentioned that she too hadn't been shopping there when she always used to. The Sales Associate informed her that the company had a new buyer, and were getting back to the "look" they used to have. I would agree. It's definitely a destination for classic career choices, with some fun mixed in.
Before I drove a half hour to that nearest store, I thought I'd check out what they had online. Imagine my delight when I came across this car sweater! I know I sound like a broken record sometimes, but the hubby and I love us some cars. This was the perfect piece for me. I called them to see if they had it in my size, and they did. Originally $59.90, on sale for $29.99 minus the $20 coupon, I paid a mere $9.99 for it. Sweet deal! It is very comfy and easy to wear. I kept the rest of my look casual with some distressed boyfriend jeans (Simply Vera @ Kohl's), booties (Franco Sarto from Macy's), my Grandpa's vintage watch, and some bracelets I've had for about a million years.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Crafting at Anthropologie

A few weeks ago, I got an email from Anthropologie regarding Holiday Display Workshops. I immediately clicked the link and was pleased to see the closest store to me was participating in the event. I called right away to sign myself and my partner in crafty crime (Kristen) up. The combined love of Anthropologie and crafting was a dream come true. To think that we'd be helping creating their window displays was so exciting!

So few nights ago we made the trek up to the Grand Rapids store, not knowing what to expect. We were told that this year marks Anthropologie's 20th Anniversary, and the gift for 20 years is China. We were going to create Dutch Delftware plates to be hung on a wall in their largest window. They had several of the familiar blue and white pattern examples taped to the wall for inspiration. (I see 2 peacocks, do you?)
From afar, it looked as though we were given plain bisque plates - like the kind you would get if you went to a DIY pottery place. But upon closer inspection, they were actually thrifted dinner plates that had been given a coat of matte white spray paint! I should have known given Anthropologie's afinity towards recycling. A royal blue Sharpie (with a fine and thick tip) and an epoxy glaze are the only other supplies needed to complete these cute plates. Great idea! Sally, the display manager at the store, will be completing the glazing part for us and showed us what a completed plate looked like. It was amazing how close to the real deal it looked.
Best Buds!
We first penciled on our designs. We were given doilies to trace if we wanted, and I came up with a peacock design using one. Kristen freehanded a beautiful flower design that was on one of the tableclothes next to us.

Then, we went over our designs with the markers.
Kristen also freehanded an awesome tree/bird design! And here's my doily peacock!

Completed pieces!

I could so see this flower plate in Kristen's house, as she decorates with a lot of blue and white!

We were treated to snacks, wine and water. As the lovely evening drew to a close, I couldn't help but notice the chair I was sitting in. Upholstered in patchwork denim, this baby retailed for $598!!! I couldn't believe I was trusted to craft on such an expensive piece of furniture! Maybe they figured since the markers were blue??? Seriously though, this project was mess free - another bonus if you decide to try it at home. On another sidenote, the spot lights in the store made some of our picture taking difficult. We got a lot of shadows, but oh well.

The plates are going to be hung within the next few weeks and will remain up through the holidays. So we're definitely planning a trip back to see how the display turns out and I will certainly post pics of our proud moments. We also want to know if we'll be able to have the plates we created once the display is done. Having a plate I made in an Anthropologie display? That's like a dream come true for this girl!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Up Against a Wall...

The reasons for the title of this post is because:
1.       Crappy weather forced me to be inside once again for photos. We had 2 days of Indian Summer this week, and that was too short!
2.       The battery in my camera died immediately after I got this one shot in.
3.       I was standing against a wall, as I tend to do for my shots.
But, I figured I’d post it anyway. There is no rule that you need to have multiple poses in fashion blogging, although it is nice. This was a comfy and cozy look for work this week. I love a good knit dress that you can just pull on and not worry about the rest of the day. The details I love about this dress in particular are: the cowl neck, the hanker chief hem, and the Missoni inspired zig zag print.
Dress – JC Penney (last Fall)
Black Tights
Booties – Franco Sarto (Macy’s a few years ago)
Necklace – my own design (published in Stringing magazine – buy the tutorial here)

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Mixing Neutrals

Only recently, have I begun to try mixing neutrals. For instance, if I wear grey I automatically would pair it with black. I guess I always thought it was this "rule" or something. But now I see more and more brown mixed with grey and/or black and I really like it!
 On this particular day, I wanted to take my new boots for a spin. They were a recent order from Zulily (Yoki "Lyndee"). I started getting emails from Zulily when I was pregnant, but honestly never ordered anything from them until now. The teaser pic they put of each deal in the daily email has to grab my attention in order for me to visit the site. These boots did! And they sold out quickly at a mere $45! I had thought they looked a lot like boots that Anthropologie once had, and upon doing some research I was right. Their Candy Counter or Button Brigade boots are almost exact. Buttons, buttons and more buttons! Love!
 Looking at these pics now, I wish my brown belt were the same shade as the boots. Oh well. I am getting the mileage out of this maternity dress and tights. The dress is a little big on top for me now.
 The accessory that made me able to submit this for my weekly reader outfit at Effortless Anthropologie is the Swarm Brushstrokes Still Life Bag. Being an art lover, as soon as I saw these repurposed canvas totes I knew I had to have one! This was a eBay find for a fraction of the price and I've been carrying it around ever since I got it several months ago. I get a ton of compliments on it. I just love unique pieces like that!
 And check out these sweet earrings by my gal Lorelei! They are mismatched components from Jade Scott.

 It's been crappy Fall weather lately, I feel like this stairwell is going to be my best friend throughout Winter.
Have you mixed brown and grey together? Or black and brown? It sure opens up a lot more possibilities in the closet!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

It was the best of times, it was the busiest of times.....

I hate it when I don't have time to blog! These past few weeks have been sooooo busy, so I thought I'd give a little recap of what has been more important than taking pictures of myself in outfits. (Yes, I meant that to be sarcastically funny. Being able to laugh at yourself is a good quality to have.)
Kristen and I took our second annual trip to Ghoultide Gathering, one of the largest Halloween art shows in the country. You can read about last years adventures here. This year, the location was a bit closer to us in Chelsea, MI. And, more importantly, our dear friend Jennie of The Prim Pumpkin was exhibiting for the first time! I am so proud of her - she almost sold out her entire stock!
 We lunched at The Common Grill and explored some of the cute shops the town had to offer. Including a bead shop! I knew I was meant to find the store when a beaded peacock greeted me at the door! His entire body is made of tiny seed beads! We got his story from the lady working there and found out his name is Pepe le Plume! I am totally in love with him.

Before heading home, we found a cemetary to take some spooky pictures in. Luckily we had brought our witches hats for the occassion. One of the many things Kristen and I have in common is that we are Halloween lovers, so doing something like this does not seem weird to us. And don't worry, I'm a good witch (most of the time anyway).
 I squeezed in as many readings of "Moo, Baa, La, La, La" (Richard's favorite book) as I could before........
 .......heading off to a business trip in Los Angeles / Manhatten Beach, CA. This was my first visit to California, and my Mom was nice enough to meet me out there so that we could soak up some fun activites when I had down time.
 Since coming back home, it's been non-stop Fall fun with my little guy.
 Halloween Pajamas!
 And chaperoning him on his field trip to the pumpkin farm!
Whew! I am one tired lady! And it's not going to let up anytime soon.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Color of the Moment : Red

Seems I’ve been wearing a lot of red this Fall………

I submitted this outfit for the weekly post over at Effortless Anthropologie. You can check out the reader’s outfits every Sunday.

Yellow Bird Sporadic Stitchery Pullover Sweater – Anthro

Ruffled Tank – Motherhood Maternity (yes, I am admitting to wearing a piece from my pregnancy – to my defense, I am seeing these ruffled tanks all over)

Fit & Flare Jeans – Apt 9 c/o Kohl’s

Sam Edelman Vanna boots – via eBay

Necklace – Lorelei Eurto (featuring a pendant from RoundRabbit and beads from Loupiac – love supporting my artist friends!)

I took these pics on the top floor of the parking garage I am in daily. You can see one of our tall downtown buildings (The Federal Center) in some of them. I was trying to do some “tricky pics” like squishing the building with my fingers, but it wasn’t working. Yeah, I’m a dork.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Savvy Chic

I thought I’d share some online shopping tips today, on how I search for the best deals. Here’s the story (with links):
At the end of August, I was at a Macy’s in a larger city (a.k.a. larger selection of things I don’t see at my local store). I spotted a beautiful sheer peacock feather printed top by Lucky Brand that I thought would go well with a lot of things, including my newly thrifted $3 red jeans. The price tag was a shocker…… $99! So I made a mental note about it and did some online searching later. Here is what I found:
Here is the top on the Macy’s website. I usually get coupons for Macy’s – most recently being one for 20% off and one for free shipping on their site. This top has been marked down during some of their special sales – once to $74.99 and once to $69.99. Even with the additional 20% off, and the fact that you can only use ONE code (not both the 20% off and free shipping) on their site, it was still a no go for me. (Macy’s does offer free shipping for orders $99 and above, but that usually does not work for me).
Zappo’s also offers this top on their website for full price. I believe it was once marked down to $89 and they do offer free shipping all of the time, no order minimum.
I had even found this top on eBay, for a small $5 discount and free shipping, but still no.
Wouldn’t you know, the best price was directly from the brand! Lucky’s website marked this to half off, and then was offering an additional 25% off for a special sale. I also searched for additional coupon codes for Lucky and came up with 10% more off. That’s more like it.
You might notice that the top Lucky manufactured for other retailers has a scoop neck and ¾ loose sleeves whereas the one on their site is long cuffed sleeves and a v-neck. So those are details you will want to look at if you really have your heart set on a certain feature. In this case, I was not picky.
Moral of the story? Do your homework! It’s amazing what you will find. I tend to be a repeat customer to sites that allow multiple discount codes and free shipping with no limit. You may already be getting discounts mailed or emailed to you, but usually only if you are on their mailing list. If it’s a place you don’t usually shop at, search online for discounts. My favorite site is Retail Me Not.
I kept the rest of this boho outfit simple, with a long copper feather necklace I made.