Thursday, February 28, 2013

1/6 of 2013 in the bag

For 2013 I am budgeting my clothing allowance based on the entire year. Sound crazy? Read more about it { here }

This month's spending is the result of frittering.

I think I had a mild case of the Winter blues, & the only cure was more cowbell shoes.
No, I did not get "the bag"... but more on that in another post. 
Top Row: Yellow "Sadie" satin heels // Leopard  "Carol" pony hair heels
Middle: Shoe Dazzle Pumps Red & Silver "Carine" heels
Bottom: Target peplum top
Seriously every shoe company that has my email address tempted me & tempted me with sales until I gave up & admitted that every single pair was cute, but bringing home more than 4 in one month would surely be a sign that I had a shoe problem. 

It is my dream to own a pair of classic pumps in every color. Ty says my dream is silly, but seriously what do boys know!? Dreams are dreams people!

So what did my budget get me this month?
I picked up 2 pairs of shoes from the ShoeMint Sale & have already worn the Leopard pair worn here.
(each originally $79.98, 50% off = $79.98 total) 

I also scooped up 2 pairs of shoes from the ShoeDazzle Sale. Adding red (worn here) & silver (worn here) heels to my dream rainbow pumps collection.
(each originally $39.95, 30% off + VIP discount = $43.76 total)

I had been stalking this Lands End Canvas Sequin Skirt since the holidays & scored it for a great price 
(not in collage, but worn here // was $90, on sale for $54.99, now in limited sizes // similar style on sale)

The ultimate reason I didn't get "The Bag" this month was because I realized that I wanted every single item from the Prabal Gurung for Target Collection! I ended up showing some rare lady-like restraint & walked away with a pair of lace up booties $39.99  (worn here) & a Target peplum top $22.99  (because we all know you can't leave that store with just one thing!)

And how much did I spend?
Actual retail price = $392.84
Total paid = $241.71 (a 40% savings!!)

Year total $3,000
January  $149.94
-February $241.71
Remaining = $2,608.35

Sooo, not great, no wardrobe staple holes filled - although I am pretty much obsessed with the new peplum top, you will be seeing much more of her in outfits to come!

How did your shopping conquests go this month?
Did you stay on budget? Get any super scores?
No judgement here (I bought 4 pairs of shoes, I definitely don't get to judge!)

I am linking up with Franish for her "Budgeting Blogger" series, check it out, & enter too... if you dare! 

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

what's in my make up bag?

I have still been getting my Birchbox subscription & even though I haven't been gabbing about it all the time over here, I really love the service, like highlight of my month type of package in the mail. 
Ok, so I don't fall in absolute love with every single product, every single month, but this former product-trying-shy gal has found some new favorites & has been enjoying the full-size products that have been included now & again. 
As I mentioned yesterday, my favorite products are the ones that don't cost a bunch & get the job done & then some (workhorses!)
1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9 }
These 9 products are the ones that I initially sampled through Birchbox & have gone on to become permanent game changers in my daily make-up routine. 

{1} theBalm Cosmetics "Mary-Lou Manizer" - what can this little lady NOT do - I love it on my lids, brow bone, cheek, and to add shimmer to my basic lip balm. This is a product that I keep close by in my purse for on-the-go touchups! 


{2} stila lip glaze - great color, easy to apply, non-stick - what else could a girl want!?


{3} Jouer Luminizing Moisture Tint - I had never tried a "BB cream" before, & this was the first product that made me a BB believer! The mineral packed formula leaves my skin feeling smooth and looking bright. Best of all, it is one of those products that works without everyone knowing that you are wearing it!


{4} Dr. Jart+ Beauty Balm - This cream ties with the Jouer product. Dr. Jart's BB cream blends in seamlessly & provides SPF 25 for daily protection. Less work, but definitely more action with this product!


{5} Eyeko Skinny Liquid Eyeliner - The pen style applicator on this liquid liner makes creating the perfect cat-eye a cinch! Seriously, this product makes me feel straight up dumb for previously not being able to line my eyes without looking like I did it 6 beers in.  


{6} Benefit "Ooh La Lift" - Another workhorse in my make up bag - amazing for defeating under eye darkness, but also great for adding a dreamy glow to lids & cheeks. I love to put it on with my morning make-up, but it is also revives my face at the end of the day.


{7} Mox Botanicals Lip Butter - artisanal lip balm from those wonderful people in Oregon actually is better! The Pomegranate & Fig flavor is so dreamy, and the natural oils give lips some serious plump!


{8} Jouer "The Perfector" - If I am stranded on a deserted island, THIS is the one beauty product I want to be left with. At the top of my beauty blahs are dark under-eye circles (cue that scene from "Mean Girls"... "At least you guys can wear halters. I've got man shoulders")... anyways, after applying "The Perfector", I always think "take that sleepless nights wrangling pugs!"


{9} Gloss Modern "High Gloss Masque" - I've always said that all us "regular girls" could totally look like Charlize, Jen Aniston, JLaw & the rest of those gorgeous Hollywood starlets if only we had access to their hair, make-up & styling teams... but le sigh, we do not, however I think the high gloss masque is totally one of the dream team's tools... this power product turned my mid-Winter hay hair into a red carpet ready shiny mane after one use!



Any other Birchbox lovers out there?
Have you tried their men's box or home boxes yet?
Have no clue what this "Birchbox" is that we are talking about?
Birchbox is a monthly beauty/hair/make-up sample subscription service, for $10 a month, personalized samples are delievered to your doorstep - interested? Sign up here.
(No, this is not sponsored by Birchbox, I am just a real big fan, but if you sign up for the service using my referral link, I will get a small commission with which I will be using to buy more crack make-up.)

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Beauty, Brilliantly Priced


My lifestyle: graduate student, pug-mom, friend/girlfriend/daughter & on the go, like, always!
What I don't have time for - spending a lot of time on my hair. I love the way my hair looks when I step out of the salon (who doesn't!?), but I don't want to do the time-consuming & expensive upkeep to keep it that way (ain't nobody got time for that!)
I used to be the girl that used whatever shampoo was in the shower, but since dyeing my locks, I can't believe the hair-diva that I have become! I have tried so many different products over the past month looking for "The One" (If you come over, you leave with a complimentary cast-off shampoo!), & even thought that I would have to give up showering everyday to keep my color intact ... I do want to protect my salon investment, but not at salon prices. 
The fact that I can pick up Vidal Sassoon Pro Series products at my local Kroger (where I buy my groceries anyway) is a game changer.
I got to try out the Vidal Sassoon Hydrating Moisture Lock shampoo, which sounded like the opposite of what I would want for my easily greasy hair. I was blown away to find this shampoo to be cleansing at the root & hydrating at the tip for beautiful, shiny, healthy, colored hair- I'm not afraid of shampoos with "moisturizing" properties anymore! 



Great hair doesn’t have to cost a fortune. At Kroger, you can achieve salon-inspired results, brilliantly priced, when you purchased new Vidal Sassoon Pro Series hair products. Download coupons for the already affordable products, now through March 2. Happy shopping (and shampooing)!

Are you a hair-diva? Or a wash & run lady?
What is your best budget beauty buy?

I was selected for participation in this campaign as a member of Clever Girls Collective.
All statements & opinions are my own (as always!)

Monday, February 25, 2013

1 blazer, 4 ways

Good morning & a huge welcome to all the new readers around this little corner of the internet, if you are here from Audrey's blog Putting Me Together, I hope you will stay a bit & make yourself at home!

I have another wonderful clothing remix for you today. Blazers are total work horses in my closet - the ultimate "completer piece" (to steal a page out of Audrey's book!) - & Wallis was kind enough to send me this gorgeous navy blazer to help prove my point!

I am actually participating in my first blogger contest (!!!), & if you like what you see, I hope you will share it on Pinterest, or repin my looks from here.
Here & Now : 1 blazer, 4 ways | #WearWallisFashion
Top Left: After Dinner Drinks // Top Right: Weekend Chic
Bottom Left: Girls' Night // Bottom Right: Casual Friday
Here & Now: 1 Blazer, 4 Ways - After Work Drinks | #WearWallisFashion
blazer + silk button down + skinnies + nude heels
Here & Now: 1 Blazer, 4 Ways - Weekend Chic | #WearWallisFashion
blazer + graphic tee + red skirt + gold belt + gold loafers
Here & Now: 1 Blazer, 4 Ways - Girls' Night | #WearWallisFashion
blazer + leopard blouse + pleated leather skirt + statement necklace + lace up booties
Here & Now: 1 Blazer, 4 Ways - Casual Friday | #WearWallisFashion
blazer + stripe tee + flared jeans + red heels
Which look is your favorite?
Are blazers completer pieces in your closet? What other wardrobe work horses do you adore?

Sunday, February 24, 2013

trends that make you go hmm... lucite heels

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9 // 10

I think lucite has finally lost its bad connotation with those type of working women... & now this futuristic material is popping up more & more in both home design & even fashion. I have been spotting these trendy clear heels left & right, & must say that I am on board team "Let's Dress Like We Are In The Jetsons"... who's with me?
This pair & the Kate Spade pair (#1) are my favorites for summer!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

weekend reading 02.23.13

{ via }
This weekend why don't you : play dress-up with your girlfriends?

1. Want to kick your blog photos up a notch? Learn how to make your own Photoshop Actions here & follow these tutorials to become a Photoshop goddess!

2. I love getting a behind the scenes look from other bloggers & Joy shared a great peek (with super tips) here 
(AKA how to fight Everyone Looks So Cute and It’s Totally Annoying Syndrome).

3. The Everygirl has me thinking - if I could meet any woman for lunch, who would be it? Who would be yours!?

4. If you are in a position to invest money in your blog, follow Rachel's advice about where to spend & where to save ... (I agree, buying my own domain name was a very smart move!)

5. I end every night in bed with my computer (sexy!), but Naomi has me thinking more about unplugging... 
do you have a hard time putting your "screens" down too?

Happy Weekend!
Are you going to be watching the Oscars?
If so print out your own "ballots" here or here & play along!
(Sorry so many questions this post, I am just feeling chatty!!)

My girlfirends and I are having our first "wine book club" tomorrow (with the hilar Mindy Kaling memoir "Is Everyone having fun without me?") and I'm sure there will be lots of red carpet commentary among us!

Friday, February 22, 2013

where have all the bootcuts gone?

{ What I Wore: J.Crew white button-down // Citizens of Humanity Jeans - Dita Petite Cut // Old Navy flats // 31 bits necklace (worn wrapped as a bracelet) // Purple Paparazzi necklace }

{ Get the Look }
This is my 3rd look featuring my beloved white button down (see my date night & casual weekend outfits from earlier this week for more white button down inspiration).

This might be my favorite way to wear this closet staple - letting it shine in all its gorgeous simplicity. Paired with dark denim & bold jewels, the white button down is easy polish on any outfit!
Besides my white button down, another favorite article of clothing (that gets not nearly enough love on the blog) is my pair of COH bootcut "Dita" Jeans. I got these jeans back in college when I worked at a local Arkansas boutique. At the time they were a SERIOUS splurge, even with my employee discount. But they were the first pair of off the rack designer denim that I could wear that day. No tailor middleman needed. These jeans are made for "petite" ladies under 5'4" (check) with a little bit of curves (I've got what I call "baby curves"& I like them)... & they have only gotten better with age (now at the perfectly broken in stage some 6 years (!!!) later)

Why do these boot cut babies not get much action on the blog? You tell me - when is the last time you saw a boot cut pair of jeans in the spotlight?! Ever since the "skinny" jean & "jeggings" came on the scene, tighter cut styles have been my GO TO pants, but my first love - the flattering boot cut Ditas - will always have a place in my heart.

What shape jeans are your favorite? 
Have you been cheating on your skinnies with any other pair lately?
Who's with me to bring the boot cut back!?

Thursday, February 21, 2013

white button down: pumpkin spice

{ What I Wore: J.Crew white button down & utility jacket // Choies skirt c/o // Charlotte Russe booties // Nars "heat wave" lipstick }
{ Get the Look }
white button down {$39.50, exact} + orange skirt {$49.99, exact} + woven tights {$25.00} + wedge booties {$15.50} + utility jacket {$42.97}
When Fall is just around the corner, my girlfriends and I start talking about PSLs. PSLs, or Pumpkin Spice Lattes, define Fall around these parts.
Now that Spring is just a few weeks away, what are you craving?
New skirts in bright colors define Spring for me, & my wish list keeps growing!
What defines your Spring wardrobe?

*I am rocking my white-button down this week to show you doubters just how versatile this wardrobe staple can be... check out my first date-night look here.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

white button down: b&w

{ What I Wore: J.Crew white button down // Urban Outfitters blazer // Target leopard skinnies // ShoeDazzle silver pumps // vintage clutch // Nars "Heat Wave" lipstick }

{ Get the Look }
white button down {$39.50} + black blazer {$49, exact} + leopard skinnies {exact pair, on sale for $8!!| + silver pumps {$23.97, exact} + red lippy {$26.00, exact} + silver clutch {$16.99}
White button-downs are not only for corporate meetings - in fact, they can be totally transformed for date night outings.... the perfect blank slate in your closet!
I like to loosen up a few buttons & pair this basic with a sleek blazer, printed skinnies & pumps that POP! (boy approved too!)
Mini moment caught in the action of my self-timer, checking a message from my man!
Have you rocked your white button-down for a night out?
How do you take this wardrobe staple from work to play?

Today I am linking up with MarionBerry Style for her Trend of the Month Challenge: Black & White. See the other fab b&w looks here.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

wardrobe staples: white button down

I understand that every woman has different needs for the go-to pieces in their closet & the wardrobe staples that work for me, might not work for everyone else.

That being said, I think there are a few universal pieces, that if you don't think you need them in your life, then I don't think you know about their potential. 

Case in point : the white button down

Yes, this piece is synonymous with professional attire, but it is SO MUCH MORE!
A white button down is the blank slate of your closet - perfectly paired with pencil skirts, leather leggings, under sheath dresses. Tied, tucked, & layered over or under. This is one piece that can go from work, to date night, to play without even batting an eye.
feminine glam // effortless chic // modern cool // trendy edge // pretty classic // laid-back polished
I wore a white button for the past few days - the same one - and no one even noticed because it is such a chameleon!
I can't wait to share my favorite white-button down looks with you!
Let me know, are you a white button down believer, or do I need to work extra hard on you??
My white button down believers - how do you rock this wardrobe staple?

**interested in checking out the other 49 staples that are must haves in my closet? Read more here.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

please pause for cute

Sorry, no "fashion" post this morning, but I DO have a healthy serving of cute to serve up!
Ty, Doug & I drove to Kentucky yesterday to meet this sweet 7 month old little girl, that I swore we were not bringing home with us... we all know how that story ends!
Before sundown we were headed back to Nashville as a family of 4. 
Meet our new addition - Miss Scout
Doug is working on getting his role of "big brother" figured out.
"You mean sisters aren't for sitting on?"
These two might literally kill me of cute overload!
They are of the same bloodline, & seeing their minute similarities is so fun!
I get lost in dog pedigrees, but Doug's mom is Scout's grandmother, so I think that makes them cousins?
I'm calling this holding hands! They are still figuring out their friendship, but I think we are going to make it!

Saturday, February 16, 2013

weekend reading 02.16.13

{ 1 // 2 // 3 }
This weekend : why don't you add a pop of leopard?

1. Have you checked out Design*Sponge's Social Media Do's & Don'ts? So worth a read!

2. Instant gratification for your walls - same day artwork starting at $5! (seriously crushing on these giant map prints!)

3. Does your bra fit correctly? I don't think mine ever has, so I am excited to try out this new way to shop for the perfect home for your ladies!

4. Bri is gorgeous, sweet, incredibly talented & she is sharing her solid-gold blogging secrets. I was taking notes while reading this one about photoshoots!

5. Don't forget about the Valentine's Day giveaway for a $50 giftcard to Lash Clothing boutique (3 winners!!) Enter {here}


P.S. THANK YOU SO much for coming back here & interacting with my corner of the internet every day. I always say that I have the best readers (it's TRUE!) & you continue to warm my heart, comment after comment, month after month. Here's to another "best month ever", I am working on pulling together new giveaways, original content, & documented outfits for you.

If you are interested in growing your blog along with me, please check out my recently updated sponsorship opportunities, including a special monthly blogger highlight (I think it is going to rock!)

Friday, February 15, 2013

Cupid's Arrow

Monday was my date-night V-day style, but this is my "I'm-somewhat-of-a-professional-but-still-like-to-celebrate-holidays" look
{ What I Wore: J.Crew tippi sweater & cropped wool trousers // BaubleBar necklace // Kate Spade bracelet // ShoeMint Carol heels }
(*confession: I actually wore my black ballet flats with this outfit to work, as I didn't think my boss would appreciate these heels, but I had just gotten them in & knew that you would!)
{ Get the Look }
pink sweater {$39.50, exact} + red cropped pants {on sale for $39.99} + leopard heels {$39.99, exact} + black baubles {$42.00}
Happy February 15th, aka the day after Valentine's when my Facebook newsfeed is blowing up with engagements!
Ty & I had a wonderful evening at the Nashville Predators hockey game: 2-for-1 beers & grown men chasing a tiny puck are my kind of romantic! (oh, and the Preds won!)
Are you a big holiday celebrator?
With 2 holidays in one week, this I'll-pop-champagne-for-a-random-Thursday holiday lover was on cloud nine! (did you see my Fat Tuesday beads on Instagram?)

What did your Valentine's festivities include?
Is it bad that I love the date nights where you have the best laid plans, but the poorest executions?
Those sometimes epic fails can make for the best stories later!

P.S. I am linking up with Long Distance Loving for Friday's Fancies. See all the pink + red goodies over {here}

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day & a Giveaway

Happy Valentine's Day lovelies! 
I've got on more pink & red - can't wait to share it with you tomorrow!

Whether you are spending this day with your man, your girl, you mom or your dog,
as Carrie Bradshaw so eloquently said, us women should fall in love with ourselves first - so why not treat your beautiful self to a little something sweet!
A Valentine from you, to you!

I've got something sweet for you too!
Lash Clothing is an online boutique that you will wish was your real life closet & they are giving THREE of you $50 gift cards!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Fashionista in Flats

Good Morning! I am over on Le Petite Pear sharing my love story with ballet flats. 
I might be vertically challenged, but nothing comes between me & my flats!
Please check it out as part of Sam's fun "Fashionistas in Flats" series { here }
Wearing: J.Crew sequin top, BB Dakota blazer, ModCloth mint jeans (similar), Old Navy flats

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Review: Dr. Ox Detox

This is not a diet. In fact, I am not a dieter. I decided a long time ago to make peace with my body, since it is the Earthy vessel that was given to me & I made up my mind to treat it with respect, not angst. 

My lifestyle choice is to enjoy all things in moderation. To not make myself for guilty for that 2nd 4th glass of wine, to have experiences & not deny my cravings. 
While I excelled at decreasing my gluten intake the second half of last year, I just as excellently fell of the wagon late last month.
Dinners with new friends, birthday celebrations & that little eating holiday known as the Super Bowl completely threw me off the life of "moderation" I had been enjoying.

Lately, my food cravings have been out. of. control.
2 pigs in a blanket turned into me chain eating 10+ & when I was licking the guac bowl in the 3rd quarter, I knew that I needed to re-think my eating priorities. 
Return to simple foods that nourish my body (live simple)

I had seen the Dr. Ox Detox juice cleanse floating around Pinterest & after seeing Jill do it with success, I decided to take the plunge.
I knew my body could definitely use me hitting the reset button!
{ As seen on Instagram }

Pros:
I have been a long time enjoyer of the green smoothie (spinach/kale + fruit) & appreciated that this cleanse was only 3 days (totally doable!), with ingredients found at my local Kroger, for under $20/day.

Following the 3 days, I didn't feel crazy different, but I did notice that my binge belly bloat was gone (I don't have a working scale, so I'm not sure if that translates to any weight lost).

I am not a breakfast eater, but I do hope to continue with the green tea morning routine.
{ via }
Details:
Morning drink - prepared as is, favorite!
Lunch drink - eliminated celery from the drink, ate it alone instead
Dinner drink - decreased the cayenne pepper to a dash

Cons:
I have a serious salt & caffeine addiction & having to with go these vices for 3 days led to some uncomfortable headaches (I guess this was a good way to finally realize that I need to cut back on these in my daily life going forward)

While the amount of juices made me feel full (I didn't even eat the snack smoothie), I never actually felt satiated (might have something to do with the lack of fats, sugars & gluten).

I used my regular Ninja blender to prepare the drinks & they were a little chunky (I love my Ninja & actually didn't mind, but a true juicer might make these straight "drinkable")
--------------------
This wasn't a radical "lose 20 lbs in 3 days" type diet; however, I do feel as if my body has been reset & my eating priorities are back in focus.

Have you ever tried a juice cleanse?
Looking to try Dr. Ox's detox? Feel free to shoot me questions, or share your experiences in the comments!

Monday, February 11, 2013

hot pink love

{What I Wore: J.Crew tippi sweater // Land's End Canvas sequin skirt // Golden Ponies clutch // ShoeDazzle suede heels }

{ Get the Look }
pink sweater {$39.50} + sequin skirt {$54.99} + leopard clutch {$27.00} + red heels {$39.95, studded & fabulous!)
Wearing my favorite Boutique Onze zodiac "Leo" necklace & Diament Designs "Jessica" necklace
I don't have much to say today, just a few things of note:

1. I am still "Taking One Passing it On" - you loved this sequin skirt from last time, so I enjoyed styling it up for date night with the boy (he liked seeing my stems come out of hibernation too!)

2. My dream is to own a pair of heels in every color of the rainbow. Ty thinks I am crazy, but you can't knock someone's dreams... even if it IS a dream of rainbow heels. So in February, I checked red off the list (yellow too actually... that's to come!)

3. How do you feel about non-holiday sequins? Yay or nay? Maybe February is the last month? Do I have to put them away yet!?

4. Nashville surprising never has any crowd issues at the Target collaboration launches (yay for the little things). I strolled into my local store Sunday afternoon & picked up these Prabal Gurung shoes (meow!) {if this, this, & this magically arrived at my house I wouldn't question it at all}. Favorite collaboration yet!

5. I met up with my blogger friend Jessica again this weekend - seriously how great it this blogging world we are apart of!? I have to say that a blogging friend has become a real-life friend!

P.S. I am linking up with Still Being Molly's #YOLO Mondays... check out the goodness here.
And Real Girl Glam here for her Real Girl Style link up.

P.P.S. I am so honored to have this post featured on DailyBuzz Style. See all the other "Sweetheart Style" { here }