Saturday, December 28, 2013

Mushroom Mania

It seems like I was surrounded with mushrooms this Fall. Being a lover of whimsical prints, I am always drawn toward woodland fun in Autumn. And Anthropologie does woodland so, so well. Of course, since I am a sale shopper I am just now starting to acquire some of these pieces as they get marked down. This Fall though, mushrooms were especially special to me since my little one dressed up as a gnome! With the help of a few dear friends of course...... Jennie from Prim Pumpkin loaned us the costume. Lisa of Lisa: It's not just a name, it's a lifestyle! procured the mushrooms for props and took pictures in our woods. Lastly, Miss Linda (his daycare teacher) suggested I enter him in our local news channel's costume contest..... where he ended up winning 1st place! Oh how it brought back memories of when Jon and I would go all out with our costumes and go around to all the contests.
Getting kind of sick of being in my pajamas, I decided to dress up a bit today and remember my favorite season - Fall. Although, I must say the red and green on this outfit fits into the Winter holidays too.
Monogram Mushroom Patch Pullover - Anthropologie
Dana Buchman Red Jeans - Kohl's (via consignment shop)
Covington Red Mary Janes - Sears

Friday, December 27, 2013

Get the look for less........ necklaces edition!

Howdy! How was every one's Christmas? Ours was great! We have been enjoying quiet time at home with our little guy, and it is so great to just play each day by ear..... let him play with his new toys, try out the sled that Santa brought, go to our zoo's holiday nights event, watch Rudolf (I've lost count how many times now). The outfit posts are pretty slim right now, as I must confess I haven't gotten out of my pajamas much the last few days...... and when I do, it's to bundle up for the seemingly never ending ice and snow we have been having in Michigan.
I hope to be back soon with some fun outfits...... I am really excited as my hubby and son did a great job picking out some fun things for me! In the meantime though, I just couldn't wait to share a few necklace deals with you.
 First up.... I have been a long time fan of Heidi Daus. And speaking of Christmas, several years ago Jon surprised me with some Heidi Daus pieces. Heidi often churns out gorgeous peacock pieces. I don't own any of them because as you can see, they can run $300 - $400!!! I got this similar necklace at Macy's. I can't find it on their website, and I threw the receipt away, but if I recall correctly I think it retailed for $36, had 20% off, and then I had an additional 25% off coupon the weekend they did the friends and family sale. UPDATE: I did find it on their website. Here is the link.
Another designer I am a fan of is Lenora Dame. One of the stores that Miss Dame sells at is Anthropologie. When they carry various colors of her Budding Necklace, they retail for $58. Sometimes, you can find her at TJ Maxx, as was the case here. I had always admired the Budding necklaces but couldn't settle on a color. When I saw this multi-colored one in the case, it really intrigued me. I took the afternoon to think about it (a.k.a. look it up online) and when I went back later that day it was gone! That's often the case with stores like TJ Maxx. My suggestion? Buy it when you see it - you can always return it. Anyway, thanks to my Mom who found the necklace at the store in her town. The Nostalgic Floral Strand retails for $105! TJ Maxx price? $29.99
I hope to be styling these necklaces in some outfits soon!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Similar Sweater

Last week I showed the Lace Skirt Sweatshirt in this post. I found a similar top at Macy's -
Style & Co. Lace-Hem Top. Since I loved the comfort and style so much, I don't mind having both. Plus, they do have differences. The one from Anthropologie is grey sweatshirt material, and the hem is more solid (not really a lace). The one from Macy's is a mottled tan sweater material, the hem is truly a lace, and it has a little pocket detail. Normally, this would be a "get the look for less" post, but since I bought both, let's compare prices.

Lace Skirt Sweatshirt - Anthropologie
Original price $78
Sales price $49.95
20% off on Black Friday
Final price: $39.96

Style & Co. Lace-Hem Top - Macy's
Original price $49
40% off price $29.40
20% off coupon
Final price: $23.52

I paired the Macy's find with my flared jeans, a lacy scarf, and the Arctic Feather Earrings from Anthropologie. Here's an odd little fact about me...... I only wear earrings if my hair is up, because they don't show otherwise. And since I wear them so rarely, my ears get irritated pretty quick and I end up taking them out. There are ones I can tolerate better than others, but then I have to be careful of my little guy pulling on them.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Vintage Sweater

This sweater is close to 20 years old. Does that make it "vintage" yet? I bought it in high school (yeah, I'm not worried about revealing my age just yet) and even though I probably haven't worn it since around then I apparently couldn't give it up. It was cleared out of my closet about 10 years ago, but instead of going though my usual cycle (consignment shop, eBay or donate) I felt that it was special enough to hang on to. I thought of it the other day and dug it out of the box I had it in, in the basement.

I got it at the Express - you sure as heck wouldn't find anything like it there now - their style has completely changed. It is hand knit wool. It is so thick and warm, that I didn't even need a coat today. I just added my scarf and gloves. I am so glad that I kept this special piece!

Vintage Wool Sweater : Express
Sonoma Roll Tab Chambray Tunic : Kohl's
Red Jeans : Local Consignment Shop
Boots : Zulily

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Get the look..... for less!

This look from Anthropologie really grabbed me for some reason. So I set out to try to recreate it for less. I had hoped to have everything pulled together right away, but obviously I couldn't wait to debut the flannel a few weeks ago.

Anthropologie Altay Buttondown (red plaid no longer available) : $88

You can find plaid flannel shirts just about anywhere now. The one I choose was the Croft & Barrow Plaid Flannel Shirt from Kohl's : on sale for $21.60 and I used an additional 30% off coupon.

Approximate savings : $73
Anthropologie Ruffled Sweater Vest (taupe no longer available) : $118
It took me longer to find a similar vest than I thought. It was one of those items where you see them a million times, but then when you are looking for it you can't find it. I finally found this one at a local boutique for $20!
Savings of : $98
The jeans, I've already had for some time (my trusty Apt 9 Flares from Kohl's). Same with the boots from JC Penney. The druzy necklace is on clearance at Michael's for $1.99!
I love these pieces together, but I know I am going to wear them a bunch with other items as well. I am loving the open, flowy trend in sweaters lately. And I know this vest will look great belted too. I know it's been pretty casual around here, and in looking at my schedule I think the rest of 2013 will follow suit. It's funny that I've read from a few other Michigan fashion bloggers that they are feeling this same type of casual comfort this winter.
As you can tell, I love sales and finding items on a budget. I had done another post similar to this here. I will try to do them as often as I can, so that you too can see you don't have to spend a ton to look and feel great!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Blue & Brown

It's been a pretty casual week around here. I worked from home again today, but had to run out to meet my team for our annual holiday get together and also go to our company store to get cookies for Richard's Christmas program tomorrow night. I am glad that I am pushing myself to blog everyday, even though I am not getting out to interesting photo locations.

Blue and brown is such a classic combo, and as you can see here it is the colors of my kitchen. I made the painting on the wall...... maybe I'll do a DIY post someday about how to make your own canvas wall art.

Sonoma Roll-Tab Chambray Tunic : Kohl's
I took the sash off and dressed it up with the Quadrivium Belt : Anthro
Young Wheat Big Ruffle Pants : Matilda Jane (soooo comfy, and there's that lace detail again)
Bear Traps Armady Boots : Macy's
Necklace : made by me, seen here

One of my dogs, Biscuit, photo bombed me. That's another pro to working at home..... the dogs are so happy they do not have to be crated as much!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013


Here is another way I styled my Tommy Hilfiger Book Print Shirtdress. I often enjoy layering shorter dresses over jeans. Do you ever do that? They are more like a tunic then. I really like the proportions here, with the wide leg jeans.

Tommy Hilfiger Book Print Shirtdress : Macy's
Apt 9 Wide Leg Jeans : Kohl's
A.N.A. Boots : JC Penney
Necklace : Gift from Hubby

Monday, December 2, 2013

Cozy Monday

Today was a work from home day for me, and we had plans to go out in the evening so I threw on some accessories at the end of the day. Coming off of a long holiday weekend, it was nice to ease into the week like this. I did not do any Black Friday or Cyber Monday shopping, except for this sweatshirt from Anthropologie. On Black Friday, they had 20% off the entire store, which included sale items. Since they don't discount very often (or as deep as I am used to at other stores) I usually try to take advantage on at least one thing. Dressed up sweatshirts are a huge trend right now - they are either jeweled, or have some lace/crochet appliques. If I knew how to sew, it would be easy to add these fun hems onto tops. But, for now, I'll just buy them. These are the type of details I love to make basics a little more special.

Lace Skirt Sweatshirt : Anthropologie
Simply Vera Distressed Jeans : Kohl's
Bear Traps Boots : Macy's
Grandpa's Vintage Watch
Bits of the Past Necklace : Tracy Bell

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Plaid & Rhinestones

Oh plaid...... I was forced to wear you for 8 years in the form of a Catholic School uniform. Then, there was the "grunge" era in high school while listening to non-stop Pearl Jam. I guess it's been almost 20 years (holy crap) and time for some new plaid flannel. In this decade, I am dressing it up with some flare jeans and rhinestones! I can't take credit for this necklace design though..... I saw it on Pinterest from the lovely Denise who designs for Michael's using Halcraft beads. Out of all the statement necklaces I have, I did not have a white rhinestone one. I knew when the right one came along I would know. I was loving this one from Ily Couture, but whew - what a price tag! Y'all know me, I can find it or make it cheaper. I caught the components on the 50% off sale, so it cost me about $16 to make this necklace. I just love the vintage and floral aspect of it.
Apt 9 Flare Jeans - Kohl's
Brown Belt - Target
Brown Boots - JC Penney
Miss Albright Americana Tote - Anthropologie (see how I altered it here)
Necklace - made by me using components from Michael's

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Working from Home

Several months ago, my lifestyle changed quite a bit. Back in May, my department announced a program to "work from home" for half of your work week. I decided to partake knowing that my husband was job hunting and not knowing where that would take us. He is now working about an hour and a half away, and as we look to move closer to that area, this work from home program is a great way for me to keep my job since I will only have to commute half the time.
As I have adjusted to this new lifestyle, a few things have changed. Obviously, I don't have to "dress up" every day. I am also only washing my hair every other day (the days I do go into the office). Cutting down on my morning routine, saving product, water, etc..... has been nice. But as tempting as it is to work in my pajamas all day, that is not what I do. I still have to take my son to and from daycare everyday, and occasionally I will run some errands during my lunch hour. Needless to say, throwing on some comfy clothes and tying my hair up is the answer. 
One of the hardest challenges to all of this is the blog here. Since this has turned into a fashion blog, from my original jewelry blog intent, I want to offer the best content that I can. Ideally, I would love to post everyday. And for every 1 post that I do, there are probably 5 more that I decide not to publish either because I didn't think the outfit was good enough and/or the pictures were not good enough. (Which I am seriously tempted to upgrade my camera.... maybe there will be some good deals over the holidays that will convince me. Canon Rebel?)
Anyway, there is no reason not to share some of my more "casual" outfits as well so I am going to start doing that. Starting with this one:

Here is a good example of finding a detail you like (such as these crochet sleeves) that is more pocketbook friendly. Free People Thermal for $68 or Sonoma Thermal from Kohl's for $9.99 (you can probably guess which one I picked, and I am tempted to get more colors). This is such an easy top to throw on and it is so comfy but yet it has those special details so it doesn't look like you are raiding your man's outdoor gear!
Worn with black jeggings from JC Penney from a few years ago. Bare Traps boots from a few years ago. And my Anthro DIY vintage glasses necklace (see original post here).

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Altering Tips

You are probably no stranger to altering clothes, such as hemming pants or a dress. But do you ever think outside the box? Accessories, shoes, bags, etc? I recently transformed a few pieces to better fit my lifestyle, and thought I would share them. I hope it gives you some inspiration to see the potential in things!
First up, this super cute tote I recently got at Anthropologie (Miss Albright Americana Tote). I am a lover of old, beat up suitcases that tell a story. Here we have what appears to be an old leather bag, complete with destination stickers. When actually, the image is printed onto a coated cotton canvas. I love these kind of illusions! But look at those puny straps it came with! I have always been one who needs my hands free, hence preferring nice shoulder straps on my bags. This is even more important with a toddler! Many a times I have passed up a cute purse because it did not have a strap that was: A. long enough to easily get on my shoulder and B. would not stay on my shoulder. Well, not this time!
My first instinct was to take it to a shoe repair shop (cobblers can repair handbags too), but alas this would just be an added errand to my never ending list. Especially since the closest one to me is a half hour whether I go East or West. So I started searching for ideas online - could I fashion something myself with supplies I already had? I mean, I have dabbled in some leather and metal work.....
When it came down to it, once I added up the cost of running to all the craft stores, buying leather, hardware, cutting the leather, etc..... and perhaps not being pleased with the end result, I decided to purchase ready made straps from Value Belts Plus on eBay. I could pick my color, length, hardware, etc.... and it was all shipped straight to my door in less than a week! The new straps just clipped onto the existing rings on the bag, and then I cut the small ones off. Real leather, adjustable, and they look as though they belong on the bag because of their buckle/belt look. Viola! Sometimes, you just have to weight all your options to see which makes the most sense in terms of running errands / cost. I couldn't be more pleased!

Next up we have these boots. Are they boots? Are they Mary Janes? Yet another illusion I fell in love with when I first saw Prada's Button Boots last Fall. Yeah, not affording Prada in this lifetime. Anthropologie carried Vic Matie's Icon Mary-Jane Boots last year, but even they were too expensive. And by the time they were marked down within reach, my size was sold out. Besides, the silver part was just a little too space age for me and wouldn't have gone with as much. I found these cuties on eBay........ for $4.00!!! They are by XOXO and the style is "Chance". Since I didn't get a "before" picture, I decided to search on eBay again only to see someone trying to sell a pair for $120!!! Guess they got the memo that they looked like designer boots - I doubt they retailed for that much new. Anyway, you can see how the heel had a red fade to it. I did not like this so I painted the heels with some 99 cent Martha Stewart paint from Michael's. I have worn them twice and the paint has held up! Sweet deal!

Lastly, I have this jacket that I recently got at my local consignment shop. Oh, the rosettes, the rick rack, the bead accents, the ruffles....... was this cute or was I sadly mistaken? I mean, it had all of the details I usually love??? I realized the ruffle around the lapel is what pushes it over into Dollywood territory. Hmmm, I am not much of a sewer, especially on a sheer fabric like that. Should I try to glue it around to the underside? Oh hell, I just cut the straps off an Anthropologie bag.... bring on the scissors! What do I have to lose?
Oh yeah, much, much better already! I can also tell that the previous owner moved the buttons in for a better fit. So you see ladies, if it's not perfect to begin with, there is no reason why you can't make it perfect with a little imagination!