Is online window shopping a thing?

In an effort to be more of a saver and less of a spender, I have decided to start online window shopping.  My sweet friend Erika taught me this phrase “online window shopping.”  I’ve adopted it because it is just oh so clever! For me, its WAY more safe than window shopping in the traditional sense.  I keep my wallet FAR out of arms reach, which really isn’t possible at the actual mall.

I am very ready for some fall weather.  I’m getting to the point of the summer where all of my clothes are feeling very blah and over worn.  Fall fashion is everywhere these days, which doesn’t help my situation.   With the September issues of all of the glossies hitting stores, I long for a few new treasures for my closet.  Hence, the online window shopping.  Tonight’s find: H&M.

H&M is a favorite of mine, especially as far as fast fashion goes.   This fall will be no exception.   I hope these items hop into my closet at some point this fall!   After spending over an hour checking out everything, I have reigned it in to nine items I would like love to own!

H&M Fall Collage

grey blouse / 20s dress / cape
imitation leather skirt  / shirt dress / Jacquard pants
leopard wristlet / imitation leather pants / leopard pumps 
  • This grey blouse would be so pretty for the fall with these great Theory raspberry tweed skinny suit pants my mom gave me for my birthday.  Add a pair of patent mary-janes and the outfit is complete!
  • Ever since I saw The Great Gatsby, I have been enthralled with all things deco 20s/early 30s.  I imagine this dress with long strands of pearls, dark black tights and yet again, black patent mary-janes.  (Can you tell I live in my patent mary-janes in the fall/winter)
  • I have wanted a winter cape for several years now.  Then I saw Heather Dubrow (Real Housewives of Orange County) wearing one on the episode where they went to select Tamra’s wedding dress.  Needless to say, I have been counting down the days until the fall so that I can scoop one up for myself.  This might be just the ticket!
  • I am really excited about this imitation leather skirt because it keeps a look I love in my budget! Imagine this with a lipstick pink chiffon blouse tucked in, black tights, and wedge boots.  Come to think of it, I might want a new pair of boots to wear with this ensemble, but I digress.
  • I am mad for plaid!  I would love this with some chocolate-brown tights and caramel riding boots.  Casual and still pulled together for an outing with friends.  I bet it would be really cute with denim skinnys too!
  • It’s hard to tell, but there is a pattern in the weave of these pants.  It adds a richness and depth to closet staple.  They would be perfect for day-to-night, or even a holiday party.  Bleh, holiday party…its still 100 degrees outside…what am i thinking?!
  • My new favorite small bag for a night on the town is a wristlet.  I know I am a little late for the party on this one.  The patent leopard would go with just about anything!
  • These imitation black leather pants are just beyond.  I imagine them with a sparkly top for a night on the town!  The perfect piece to update my wardrobe for Fall 2013!
  • Leopard remains top dog in my book.  These pumps would be great for work to add some color my fall wardrobe. What can I say, my go to color is black – year round!

What ‘s calling your name for the fall?

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broadway’s biggest night, the tony’s: A fashion review

Broadway’s biggest night did not fail to impress.  First, can we talk about Neil Patrick Harris (NPH)?!

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No only did he look great, but he was a phenomenal host.  NPH brought the opening number to a new level.  It featured all of the nominated numbers and several award winners that are still running today.  I also loved a bit he did where he combined the names of musicals and plays in order to create “playcicals.”  It was hysterical. google it.

I have to say that I have a special place in my heart for Rogers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella.  Seeing the number from the revival with a sea of rainbow dresses dancing the night away at the ball warmed my heart.  But on to the fashion…

There were very few looks that I didn’t enjoy.  Only two stood out to me as not the best choice.

1. Judith Light wore a Zac Posen gown that would have been lovely except for the incomplete sleeves on the bodice.  They had a robot/armor look to them  with wide shoulders and were open in for lack of a better term, the arm pit…not my favorite.

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2. Scarlett Johansson looks like she is ready for a nice dinner or a night on the town, not the Tony’s.  This is a formal event and she should have had on a ball gown.  I felt like it was almost disrespectful to importance of the event.

 

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And then there were the looks that I couldn’t get enough of…

Audra McDonald looked stunning in her black and white David Meister gown – her side-swept hair was the perfect accent to this dress.

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Jane Krakowski wore a sequin filled metallic Escada gown.  I loved the mixed metals and the solid belt.  Her dramatic eye makeup was such a contrast to the light silver gown, but it really completed the look and prevented her from looking washed out.

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I have to take a moment to mourn the cancellation of SMASH.  The cast was so talented and the music was incredible and I, for one, will desperately miss this show.  Bringing broadway to evening TV was so much fun and I am sad to see it gone after only 2 seasons.  Speaking of Smash, they did a great number at the Tony’s about broadway actors who were a part of TV shows that were cancelled.  It was so funny and a slightly inappropriate at times.  Megan Hilty, one of the stars of Smash, looked great in her cream/nude gown (I have to admit it was a risk to wear a sheer skirt) and her hair looked so pretty pulled up and away from her face so that the audience could focus on her voice.

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However, all of that being said, my best dressed for the night was Anna Kendrick.

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She killed it in a Donna Karan Atelier navy and black gown.  I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again.  Navy blue and black is one of my ALL TIME favorite color combinations.  This dress was young and fun and totally elegant all at the same time.

With that, awards season draws to a close until the Emmy Awards in fall, such a shame.

high five for friday

So a large part of my week revolved around food, which I’m sure doesn’t surprise anyone about me.  Consider yourselves warned.

1. Met some of our oldest friends at  Saint Ann for a drink.  Miss Martha and my Mama have been friends for pretty much my entire life.  Naturally, Miss Martha’s daughter, Lauren, and I are friends too!  However, we (Lauren & I) had not seen each other in pretty much 10+ years.  It was great to catch up even though it was just for a short time!  Lauren was in town on business and had to jet off to a company dinner.

Davis & SteiblePlease notice the black and white accidental twins…why and I not surprised?! 

2.  My sweet friend Erika of Erika’s Tea Cup came into town and we got a group together for a girls night.  She lives in North Carolina, so naturally, we had a Tex Mex dinner at Meso Maya.  We took up residence on the patio for 2+ hours and had a great time catching up, laughing A LOT and trying not to melt in the stifling heat & humidity.

3. The Bachelorette was the source of lots of laugher and heckling Monday night.  My friend Stephanie and I spent half the time trying to tell all of the men apart from each other (there are a lot of look a likes this season), but all in all she had a couple of cute one on one dates and one rap group date, that let’s face it, should probably have never happened.  A group of us tend to gather for watching parties and I hope that this starts back up for the remainder of Desire’s season!

4.  Went to dinner tonight with my college roommate, Kacie, and we branched out and went to Pop Diner.  While the food left some to be desired, we had fun with our whimsical drinks.  I had a Pop Rocks Martini and Kacie had a Blow Pop Martini.  Mine was actually popping as it arrived at our table.

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5.  The  Tony Awards happen this Sunday night, and I can’t wait!  Neil Patrick Harris hosting, show tunes, AND dancing…what could be better?!?

With a trip to Ikea and a little pool time are in my sites for this weekend, all I can say is TGIF!

Linking up with Lauren at The Lauren Elizabeth for #h54f

 

high five for friday

 

This week came and went all too quickly.  Did you have that kind of week too?

 

1.  Before my aunt left town we made a trip to City Craft.  My aunt is planning to redecorate her kitchen and play up its retro feel.  We needed a fabric that looked like a step back in time and full of whimsy.  City Craft is by far the my favorite place  to snag great quality fabric this is beautiful and interesting to boot.  It was tough to leave behind the turquoise and pink print with 1950s telephones on it, but we did find a great geometric print that will compliment her red countertops and is less girly.

2.. Sunday night, my Mama and I got to enjoy her Christmas present….tickets to Wicked! It was wonderful, as usual.  This was my fourth and her third time seeing the show.  Yes, I’m a musical theater girl, what can I say, it’s in my blood.  It’s always fun to have a mother/daughter date and this was no exception.  Nothing like a night at a musical to make me miss dancing.

3. Being at City Craft put the sewing bug back in me!  I can’t wait to show you the results!  Bear with me, I am out of practice so it’s a little slow going. But the machine is out and the sewing has begun.

 

4. I took a little time for myself this week.  With all of the hustle and bustle around me it was great to just have some time to sit, relax, and catch up on my shows.  2 episodes of Smash and 3 of Nashville later, I am almost caught up!  Don’t worry, it wasn’t all sitting, there was some sewing time mixed!

 

5. This is a little bit different for me to share, but I can’t resist.  Lauren really spoke to me with her post on Wednesday.  Take a moment to read it, you won’t be sorry! Although I am not a cat lady, the message rings true and takes a weight off my shoulders.  Isn’t it funny how God can put things in your life at just the right time?

 

 

How was your week?

 

Linking up with Lauren over at The Lauren Elizabeth.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

all things BlissDom

Here it is a little more than a week after BlissDom, and I am just now sitting down to talk about my experiences.  It has taken me a little time to really process through ALL of the information I learned at BlissDom.  It was so inspiring and encouraging.  As you know, I am definitely new to the blog world.  I have read blogs for years, but I have only been on the other side for a short time.  I came away with many things to investigate further, ideas to put into action, friends, and much more!

*I apologize in advance for the length of this post.  There are so many great things I want to fit in.  Bear with me here!

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My mom and I attended this conference together.  We love spending time together and this time it meant the two of us would need to break out of our shells and learn about this new blog world.  We had a GREAT time!

And so it Begins:

One of the first stops we made was to the handmade market.  Here vendors displayed their goods.  Each booth was even better than the previous one.  It was so inspiring to see these women display items that they are passionate about making.  I was ready to run home and pull out my sewing machine.  (Hasn’t happened yet, but it will! –  I have big plans for that sewing machine.)  While we were making our way through the room, I met one of my favorite bloggers, Kate from The Small Things Blog.

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She was very friendly and encouraging to this new blogger (me).  She said it’s part of the process to have some time exploring different topics in my blog before finding a place I am most comfortable.  I read The Small Things Blog daily, so it was great to meet her in person.  Yes, her hair really is that amazing! I even shared with her how grateful I am to her for introducing me to Aquage Uplifting Foam.   It has really changed how I style my hair each day (it’s all about the volume!).

Then we went to the newcomers meet up.  Here we had a speed dating type time to get us up and talking to the other attendees.  We only had a few minutes but we got to hear from each other about the type of blogs we were writing and a little bit about ourselves.  I met some great people here and continued to talk to them through out the conference.

Later that night after the opening reception, we were urged to head back into the main ballroom.  Upon entering the room we made friends with Angela of Jumping with my Fingers Crossed.  As champagne, chocolate covered strawberries, and cupcakes were passed  around we instantly bonded over our love of all things TV & pop culture.  She is so much fun and we were fast friends!  Come to find out we were about to hear from three of the stars of the upcoming reincarnation of All My Children.  I am not an AMC fan myself (nothing against it, I just haven’t ever really watched it.) but hearing from these actors who have put a lot of their lives into these roles was really interesting.  We sat in the front row & Angela filled us in on the characters played by the actors in attendance.

This kept us up way past our bedtime, but it was so much fun.  This was night one and the meat of the conference was yet to come.

The Sessions:

We began our first morning with an AMAZING keynote speaker, Scott Stratten.  He spoke in an irreverent but completely real way. AND, he was so beyond hysterical! There was the whole thing about QR codes and I was practically falling out of my seat  laughing.  He speaks the truth.  I learned SO much from him.  It’s hard to break it down to bullet points, I will try, but check him out, it’s totally worth it.

Here are a few gems from him:

~Social media never sleeps.  Quick response is critical for your brand reputation and customer service in general.

~Remember your brand is SO much more than your logo –  so spend more time on your people/products/services and less on the looks of your logo.  If what your brand represents is positive & engaging, your logo will represent that.  Of course your logo should be visually appealing, but you need to back it up with a great brand reputation.

~  Do not use social media outlets just because they are available to you but because they make sense for you and your brand.  Just because it’s the new thing, doesn’t mean it’s really right for you.  Think about your choices.

~Social media is to be just that, social.  It’s about connecting with others, not just about announcing things – focus your energy on responding.  It gives you the opportunity to humanize your brand.

We also had several breakout sessions.  Each that I attended was very informative and thought-provoking.  I left with a greater understanding of the blog world and so many things to research further.

One stands out to me because I got to hear from an author that I truly admire, Annie Downs.  She speaks so openly and honestly while maintaining a positive attitude and sense of humor.   She is WONDERFUL.  She made a specific point to talk about the different types of stories to share and where to share them.  It is important to know the difference between a journal story and a blog story. She said to use wisdom and carefully share success and failures.  After the session, I got to chat with her for a bit and take a picture with her.   Speaking with her, I knew that she genuinely cared to talk to me and encourage me.  That just doesn’t happen everyday.  She has two books coming out soon – keep your eyes peeled, its worth it!

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The other keynote that really stood out to me was the closing keynote by Jon Acuff.  He speaks with humility and humor.  He has a lot of energy and says things that you wish you had thought of because they are so on point, to the moment, and add so much to the story while being fun and funny.  He gave each and every one of us a special gift, a special printing of his new book before it even hits shelves.  SO COOL!!  I am so ready to read it.  Since BlissDom, I have been following Jon on Twitter & Instagram.  He is just great!

Here are a few of the gems he shared with us:

~Ready is a Myth.  Just start now, whether you are ready or not.  We may never be “ready” but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t give it a go.

~Never compare your beginning to someone else’s middle.

~You have permission to be horrible.

~Fear is a liar.  It only gets loud when you do things that matter.

~Don’t be a jerk.  There are enough jerk’s out there.

~When you get unstuck you are unstoppable.

A Little Something Extra:

Did I mention that we had a private concert from Chris Mann and Amber Riley?!?  I didn’t know Chris Mann but my mom was SO excited to see him because she watched/rooted for him on the TV show, The Voice.  I have to say, I am impressed with him.  If I had to describe him using current vocalists I would say that he is like Michael Buble with some Adam Levine thrown in to give his voice just a little bit of grit.  Amber Riley from Glee sure can belt it out!  She sang several hits she sang on Glee.  After the show, we took a pic with the two of them.  It is by far the worst picture that my mom and I have EVER taken.  Needless to say, it didn’t make the cut.  But check out the singers in action.

Amber Riley, etc.

Suffice it to say, I left BlissDom inspired, motivated, and yes exhausted.  I learned so much in the sessions and possibly even more just talking to different women in between sessions.  If you are ever looking for a little motivation or encouragement, look to any of the people I mentioned above.  I will have to put BlissDom on my list of things to do in 2014.

I am beyond excited!

Seriously, I am beyond excited.  My long time sweet friend Erika of Erika’s Tea Cup and I swap blogs back and forth.  It’s great that we know each other so well that we can read a blog and know that we need to share it with the other.  It is also SO fun to read her blog because she lives many states away from Texas these days and so we don’t get to see/talk to each other often.  Reading her blog, I can absolutely hear her voice in my head reading the words to me. It’s a new way for us to stay in touch

Is this totally crazy?  I hope not.

Anyway, one of the blogs – an absolute  treasure – that she introduced me to is One Fine Day.  Ashley (the blogger) is just as obsessed with bright fun colors and patterns as I am.  Her style is girly and preppy without being tied to one specific style.  She has a love of home decor and design. There are many mentions of fonts (which as you know are a big deal to me) and lots of great collage style images.  She also makes many references, sometimes super discretely, to Gilmore Girls.  Gilmore Girls is one of those shows that never gets old.  I may or may not record episodes that replay on cable so that I have something fun to watch when nothing else is on or when I need time to decompress.  Each morning when I take a look at her blog, it puts me in a good mood and gets my mind turning with inspiration for both fashion and home design.  It is such a treat to read.

She has a weekly series called, Need Reed Greed, where she features different people and their picks in these categories.  This week, I am honored & DELIGHTED to be that featured person.  Ashley and I have traded emails back and forth and she is just as much of a doll as her blog leads you to believe (if not even more so).

Take and minute to fall in love with Ashley’s One Fine Day (I know you will) and check out my picks.  You will NOT regret it!

Thank you Ashley!! This makes my week month!

pinterest ponderings

I just love Pinterest!  I typically plan on spending just a few minutes pinning away and suddenly I look at the clock and its been 45 minutes.  Clearly I have a problem, but I can’t say that I care.  Here are a few pins that I love today!  (I have links to the original items, all the pins can be found on my pinterest boards.)

pink and orange hom

image This room encompasses many of my favorite colors.  I love the mixing of prints and patterns while staying true to the color palette.  As I decorate my new place, I hope to encompass several of these elements.

mod podge

image  I will take any excuse to craft.  I really need to set aside more time to do this, lately its been more craft pinning than actual crafting.  These would be so cool to make and hang one over my bed.  Now to decide what it should say.

friends

image Whenever things need to be moved, this is the image that comes to mind. Naturally, followed by a loud exclamation, “PIVOT! PIVOT!”  Friends is just the best show of all time, hands down.  What is your favorite Friends moment?

high five for friday

I can’t believe we are already in March!  Also, we spring forward this weekend – while I am excited for a little more light in the evenings, the lost hour of sleep will be sorely missed.

1.  I spent some quality time with my little pup, Tweed.

Tweed eating

Isn’t he just the sweetest eating his dinner?! (might be a crazy dog mama, can’t help it!)

2. I worked out twice this week.  This is a HUGE accomplishment.  Working on making it a habit, wish me luck!

3. It is only 2 weeks until BlissDom. Can’t wait! Already planning my outfits! Too soon?!

4. My TV addiction runs deep.  This is proved by the sheer joy that washed over me watching the premiere of The Rachel Zoe Project.  To put it in her words, it was MAJOR.  Her collection was beautiful.  Also, we caught a glimpse of Oscar De La Renta & Michael Kors new collections.  Oscar was to die for as per usual.  Michael Kors featured LOTs of stripes and a 60s vibe.  But, I digress.

5. I broke down (mine current case is getting dingy) and ordered a new iPhone case this week – can’t wait for its arrival! – I will definitely debut it as soon as it arrives!

Hope y’all have a great weekend!

linking up with Lauren over at From My Grey Desk Blog.

to work out, or not to workout? that is the question.

I got a VERY random urge to work out.  For those of you who know me well, wipe those shocked looks off your face.  It happens from time to time (like 4 times a year).  I am working on increasing that number.  Naturally, when it crossed my mind to work out, I immediately began running outfit options through my head.  Do you wear outfits to work out?  Or would just calling it clothes be better? Either way, this led me to some online window shopping.  The results of this led to a workout wish list.

Check out this great top and cropped pants from Lululemon.

back on track tankChevron Lululemon

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The reason I love this top is really three-fold.  1. It’s not a racer back tank. (Racer backs bother my shoulder blades) 2. It is not fitted around the waist and abdomen.  I mean, who wants to work out with a tank squeezing you in half?  2. Pink, but not too much, need I say more?

These pants are great because they are fitted to just below the knee – the open calves will be great for a dance class because they won’t ride up.  If I am going to work out, you better believe it is some sort of dance.

If I had great work out clothes, then maybe I would be happy to put them on and work out?  At least that’s my current plan.  I will keep you posted.

 

fashion review – Oscar style

My favorite night of the year was Sunday.  I ate up every minute of it this year, beginning on the red carpet, of course.  You know what I’m talking about…The Academy Awards!  I know there has been lots of talk about Seth McFarlane and that is to be expected.  I really enjoyed the opening.  Not so much the William Shatner part, but the dance numbers were great.  I certainly didn’t know that Charlize Theron was a trained ballerina (or so I’ve read).  She and Channing Tatum were amazing.  I have a huge crush on Joseph Gordon-Levitt.  I always have, I think its linked to his dimples.  So, seeing him and Daniel Radcliff dance was just the best.  Then in the middle of the show, Jennifer Hudson reminded us all just how amazing she is (like we needed reminding).  She really killed it singing from her role in Dreamgirls. Celebrating music in films is definitely a huge win in my book.

But down to the nitty gritty…the Oscar fashion.

Without a question in my mind, Reese Witherspoon was the best dressed.  She wore Louis Vuitton gown, jewels, and shoes.  It was my absolute favorite color combination cobalt blue and black. Her classic hairstyle really let the dress speak for itself.  I am constantly in awe at her poise and friendly/outgoing demeanor.  When she introduced the first 3 nominations for best picture she reinforced just  why I look up to her so much.

Reese Witherspoon - Oscars

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Kerry Washington has been the one to beat this award season.  The coral jeweled Miu Miu dress was stunning.  It reminded me of something that Audrey Hepburn would have worn back in the days of Breakfast at Tiffany’s.  It was the perfect level of old hollywood glamour that the Oscars really command.

Kerry Washington - Oscars

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I must have a little critical moment.  Amanda Seyfried is typically dressed to impress.  But, at the Oscars I was less than impressed with her look.  I think it could have been partially remedied if she had just worn a lip color that stood out from her face.  She really redeemed herself when she performed in the gorgeous red dress. That performance was wonderful, sheesh I still need to see Les Miserables.

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Jennifer Lawrence won an Oscar in a gown worthy of a winner – Dior Haute Couture.  The blush pink and white gown really stood out amongst the crowd and had a youthful playfulness and elegance that really represented her age and personality.  Her hairstyle really completed the look – swept off her face and beautiful.

Jennifer Lawrence - Oscars

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My last critical moment of the post goes to Anne Hathaway.  I am tired of her wearing the same color almost white, almost blush. Find some color lady!

Anne Hathaway - Oscars

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My best dressed couple is of course – Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck.  The love between these two was so obvious when Ben made his acceptance speech for Best Picture.  Jennifer stuck to her go to color family – red, setting on a beautiful Merlot  almost purple gown with an amazing bustle/train…MAJOR!  Ben looked dapper in his tux and was so humble and gracious in his speech.  I just can’t get enough!

Jen and Ben oscars

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Then we saw America’s sweetheart – Sandra Bullock.  She went a little bit edgy in the lace Elie Saab gown.  She worn a classic Sandy hairstyle and carried herself as only she can.  A+

85th Annual Academy Awards - Arrivals

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Jennifer Anniston killed it in red ball gown.  I would wear that gown any day.  Her hair was a little plain for the gown, but that is her style.  Red or black is her go to color and we haven’t seen her in red in a while.  I was so impressed she went with a ball gown – not her typical silhouette and that made it even more special.

Jenn Aniston Oscars

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Halle Berry’s dress was a 21st century throw back to a zoot suit and was really fun.

halle berry oscars

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Not so much about the men’s fashion at the Oscars.  All very dapper and formal.  Nothing out of the ordinary, which we really can’t complain about.

What did y’all think?  best dressed?