Monday, December 17, 2012

Stocking Stuffer Stuff

I was remembering this weekend how much I love stocking gifts.  Maybe it's because I'm a girl and believe great things come in small packages, but there's something extra fun about opening those little treats from Santa :)  Some folks go the route of practicality...toothbrushes, socks, etc., while others use the stocking for those things you always want to buy, but never get for yourself.  Here's a few things I think are pretty fabulous...

the head massager.  I got one of these from the dollar section at Target recently and I am in love. $.80!

wouldn't you love a chance to win thousands of dollars?

for those cutting edge folks: the Pantone 2013 Color of the Year...Emerald!
Pantone Coffee Mug $25.00

The element of surprise gets me every time on these little treats!
Deluxe Gift Box Holiday Surprise Ball from Tops Malibu $18.50
Stuff away, friends- and be creative!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

oui oui!

I'm always on the hunt for fun and different gifts. I don't often go the route of food items, seeing as it seems like everyone has some kind of allergy or intolerance of which to be sensitive.  BUT, when I was suggested the same item by two different people on two different days...I see that as the Universe revealing shopping wisdom to me that should not be ignored!

Willams-Sonoma makes some fantabulous looking treats, and it was the jumbo sized croissant that made its way into my online shopping cart most recently.  It is featured as one of their top 20 gifts (and then of course under the recommendation of 2 friends), so I decided to check it out.  Here's the scoop:

Skip the mini ones (so I am told)- like most things in the US (esp Texas), the bigger, the better
15 delightful croissants (shipped frozen with dry ice)
Upon receipt, remove croissants from the shipping container and place in the freezer, where they will keep for up to 3 months! Oui!
Then, when ready to eat, they will need time to rise and bake away.

So, while I have yet to taste one of these treats, I felt strongly enough to recommend them.  I have ordered and will enjoy a buttery taste-treat over Christmas (along with my fam...I'm not that much of a pig to eat 15 by myself)! 

Happy eating!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Freshly Fabulous

The time just passes so quickly at this time of year! Thanksgiving came and went like the wind (but what a delightful day), and I just spent the most fabulous week in NYC getting in the holiday spirit with my mom and sister.  Clearly I was in shopping heaven...
Me and Marc Jacobs...

The Marimekko store- SUCH fun
Mackenzie-Childs store left me in awe!
So while we were exploring the streets of Manhattan, my mom, sister and I discovered Joe Fresh- know it??  It's a Canadian company that landed in NY and NJ with some pretty terrific staples.  I happened upon the one on 42nd avenue (2 floors!) and scored the best puffer jacket for $30 (in store sale), adorable holiday tops for $14, and my sister found the BEST chevron gloves for $9!  It's a mix of J.Crew and Gap with a little more contemporary clean feel- and cheaper :)

People, if this store were in Boston, I'd be all over it. Here's my coat
You should be jealous!
I seriously would go back to NYC for SO many reasons, and Joe Fresh is definitely in my top 5!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Being Grateful

Available at Walmart, Target, Amazon, Overstock...
Several years ago, a dear co-worker of mine gifted me with this book.  At the time, I thought it was a not so subtle way of calling me out (I can be a complainer from time to time), but truthfully, I think she was just trying to remind me that in spite of my perceived problems, I really have it pretty good. And practicing gratefulness is like a part time job (one that you love, that is)- you have to create time and awareness for it.  Especially amidst the muck of life.

So, while I wish I had some adorable trinket or accessory that would complement this book, I'm offering this text to you, my readers.  Pick it up- read a section from time to time- and practice some gratitude in a world where we flippantly say thank you, or sometimes not at all.

Since I can't resist featuring ONE product- this is a staple in my home come Thanksgiving!
$27.99 Harvest scent

Happy Thanksgiving all, may your homes be full of gratitude!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Giving Thanks

Gobble! Gobble! I so solemnly swear to hold off on all things related to December holidays until after Thanksgiving day.  So I thought for the next two weeks as we prep for turkey day, I would highlight a few great items that I am eyeing (if I ever hosted Thanksgiving dinner, perhaps...)

Crate and Barrel always have such fun, classic decor and when I saw this displayed recently, I longed for a kitchen table that would be big enough to hold all these great items!!

For the table top...
In love with this plate! $7.95 each
With these cocktail napkins!
for $2.95- why  hesitate??
And then the coordinating place card!
So perfect at $6.95 for a 12 pack
Ok, so I won't go overboard with the "give thanks" theme- but instead show some other fan favs...

I love these!! Could use them all throughout the winter season.
I wish they were a little less than $9.95 each though!
And I couldn't resist showing this adorable pumpkin platter.  My mom would say "punkin" platter :)
$29.95 for this little beauty (there are coordinating dish towels too!)
So let's focus on giving thanks these next few weeks before the mad rush of December has us longing for the quieter times of November. Happy turkey prep to all!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Outstanding Oxblood

I will be honest, the name" oxblood" doesn't exactly elicit the most positive of reactions- in fact, it is rather gross when you think about its origins!  So now that we have stated the obvious, let's focus on the fact that this color is HOTTT for fall.  And when worn with some terrific complementary colors (hello, cognac brown, hunter green, or mustard yellow), you will look fresh off the runway.

I fancy these items for this hot hue:

I love these with a black dress and black tights- pop of color!

Asos "Apollo" Ankle Boots $96.75
So pretty for a holiday gathering
Topshop Knitted Necklace Stud Jumper $90
What a fun accessory!
Banana Republic Felt Panama Hat $59.50
Even your lips can look luscious!
Lise Watier in "Shiraz" $20

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Powerhouse Pair

Any girl from Texas should know the power of Neiman Marcus, especially in the DFW area.  I remember growing up looking at their famous Christmas book with extravagant fantasy gifts (planes, trains and automobiles- for real!) or maybe if you're a bit more of a thrill seeker, a walk-on role for Broadway's Annie would entice you (for a mere $30,000)! Truly, there is something magical and mysterious about Neiman's at Christmas, and this year, I stand in awe of the best partnership yet...

Maybe you've seen the recent press releases about this, but I nearly fell over in my chair reading about the 24 leading designers in fashion (hello....Tory Burch, Jason Wu, Carolina Herrera, Diane von Furstenberg, Oscar de la Renta, Marc Jacobs and MANY more) and how they all wanted to make a more accessible product for holiday shoppers.  No smarter partner than Target- who has a history of making great sales with leading names in fashion.

I can barely contain myself for the release- so mark your calendar!!
Here's a few things I hope to check out:
Marc Jacobs Pouches $69.99

Oscar de la Renta tote $59.99

Robert Rodriguez party dress $99.99

Saturday, October 13, 2012

two hundred and fifty for fun

Last week's post was fun thinking about how I'd spend $100 for fall.  As promised, this week, I'm spending a little more, with an eye on slightly different items. Hmmmm...$250...could be a car payment, could be your heating bill (not yet I hope!), or could be a few fabulous items to round out the season.  Here goes!

The All Weather Jacket
(with flair! Love the olive green and skirted bottom)
Athleta's Shelter Cove Jacket $164

The Cashmere Boot Sock
(Oh. My. Goodness.)
Garnet Hill $28

Fleece Lined Leggings!
(there is nothing I love more)
Anthropologie $18

The Perfect Layer
(I would buy this in every color, but in this case white too!)
Gap Pure Body Long Sleeve T $19.95 (x2)
So many good things to choose from, but I couldn't live without the last 3 items, and that jacket just screams feminine and functional.  Now, off to play the lottery to win my $250 :)

Saturday, October 6, 2012

If I Had $100 Dollars...

...I'd be rich! (or was that $1,000,000 dollars, Barenaked Ladies?)

I've been tossing around ideas in my head about if I had an extra $100 to spend on something for my fall wardrobe, what would I buy? There is plenty to say about buying that one quality item for the full $100, but I wanted to do a post on the most bang for my buck.  So, in no particular order, here's my $100 fall wish list:

Merona by Target $12.99

Burgundy: The Color of the Season
Essie: Skirting the Issue $8.00

Old Navy Quilted Frost-Free Vest $20.00

Old Navy Long Sleeve Wrap Dress $32.94

Christian Siriano for Payless $24.99

I have $1.08 left to spend...
So I would buy an iTunes song for .99 :)
Most likely Mumford & Sons: Awake My Soul

And that, my friends, is quality shopping.  Stay tuned- $250 is next!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Holy Houndstooth, Batman!

I was recently helping a friend of mine shop for Roll-tide Weekend: Alabama vs. Ole Miss (as I write this, the game is underway).  She and her hubs were invited down for the festivities- and her calendar was full of meals, gatherings, and cocktail parties...all before the big game.  Needless to say, the wardrobe had to include a healthy variety of crimson of THE biggest trends of fall 2012: Houndstooth!

It takes guts to pull this off.
If you haven't noticed, it's everywhere...and honestly, I love it.  The pattern. The use of black and white (my staples) or the pop of color (see below).  The classic, preppy style. So fab.  I have a 7 year old cotton houndstooth jacket from the Gap, and it's a go-to for me.  I even used to have the matching capri pants (see outfit above) that made it look like a suit.  I loved it.  The pants got a little too snug (alas) but I've held tight to that jacket!  I do secretly wish I had kept the pants just to appreciate the full outfit :)  Here's a few favorites of mine from across the fashion world...

A nice twist: Red and Black
JCrew got it right with these.

This looks divine with black pants.
Vince Camuto's sweater from Nordie's
Great enlarged print
Nordstrom Collection

And since high fashion should play too...
Tory Burch "Virginia"
Maybe the pattern just isn't your cup of tea, but if nothing else, it looks down right adorable in accessories like scarves and ties (for your gent!)- and it'll simply never go out of style.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Peter Pan Perfection

I had a fondness for Peter Pan when I was a child.  Something whimsy and magical about the boy who flies and Tinkerbell the fairy...not to mention the action adventure to Never Neverland...such a classic tale.

So it's no wonder I have found myself attracted to the fall trend of using the Peter Pan collar in fashion!  It's sweet and cute, very dainty and detailed, but not over the top, which appeals to me.
Here's a few of my favorites from some staple retailers:

I love how simple this is with jeans!
Kate Spade Jensen Top

Of course there is a great version at H&M!
H&M Collar Top

I like how the collar is toned down by using black and navy together.
JCrew Peter Pan Collar Tee

I couldn't resist picking the staple kelly green option! LOVE this.
Boden Peter Pan Top
So on those days when you just want a little more childlike wonder in your life where you can fly and never age, wouldn't wearing this style bring you such joy? :)

Monday, September 3, 2012

Flips for the Wrist

Being from the south, I have a deep love for flip flops.  In fact, just last year, I realized I only have one pair of summer sandals that are NOT flip flops.  Aside from needing to expand my shoe collection, the flip flop will be a staple in my closet for a long time.

Needless to say I was excited upon finding this little treasure:  the flip flop bracelet!

What could be better...a recycled flip flop made fair trade from a company in South Africa, a terrific mixture of striped colors, and each one less than $1!  My wrists are happier just thinking about it.  If you go to your local Paper Source, you can pick your favorite colors, or you can order online and see what assortment they select for you.  Either way, your wrists will "flip" with excitement!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Let's Hear It For the Girl(s)!

Spoiler Alert: boys who read my blog (my brother and probably PH), this one's just not gonna do it for you.

Ladies, get your credit card ready to order- I am in love with a new (ultra cozy) bra called the COOBIE!

So my friend, A and I were traveling up the eastern seaboard a few weeks ago, and we stumbled upon one of these little treasures in a boutique in Salem, MA.  She found it first, with a "ooooo, come look at this! I want one!" and there history was made.  The coobie looks ordinary enough- almost sports bra like- but the straps are a bit too thin for that.  Colors are standard (and there's quite the variety), very little detail (some have a little lace, some not).  And shockingly, they are one size (well, 32A- 36D) and also make a plus size for 38-42D.  Honestly, you won't think much of it until you slip it on over the girls.

Then, you fall in love.  No underwire (honestly, what man thought of that idea??) and the softest fabric ever AND there's the slightest bit of padding so I really need to spell out why that's a valuable asset?

They were at STEAL where A and I bought our collection, but even for the lovely price of $20, I'd buy one for every day of the week if it were socially acceptable. Let's hear it for the girls!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Boden Blast

It's no secret I have a deep love for the UK designer, Boden.  They have whimsy patterns amidst practical styles that just seem to fit the occasion perfectly.  Over the years, I have blogged about Boden, but just yesterday I reached a new state of enlightenment with the brand. :)

Boston somehow scored the ability to host a sample sale at our convention center.  The first was last February (still can't recall why I couldn't go), but my friend, S made her way over for some pretty awesome finds.  This time around, the sample sale would not be missed!  Let me paint the picture of this experience...
The line of people waiting to get in...maybe 500?
Tables set up to form a large square with the middle open for workers to stand and restock.  Each square was designated by size for women, a kid's section, men's clothing and shoes.  And then PILES of everything Boden on top of these tables for shoppers to sort through and try on/buy.  At 10am, the doors open, women beeline for their size and just start stuffing these large bags (see image above) with anything that looks halfway interesting. 

Fast forward to "selection time"- so literally women (and some men!) just line up on the perimeter of this room and start trying on clothes.  Why yes, there were plenty of undergarments shown (!), but those of us prepared came wearing a form fitting tank and spandex shorts :)  So you try on your pile, discard what you don't like...and then the real fun...sorting through other people's piles! 

I cracked up at the good nature of folks there- offering items to strangers who looked to be the right size for it- all the while, trying to weed out what you really don't need.  Even while standing at the checkout line, there's piles forming (again more discoveries!), so when you finally reach the cashier, you could STILL be editing.

One of my favorite finds for $30!
I walked out with some great staples, even for my sister, and I loved every minute of it (Thanks to S, C and J for joining me)! You have to be in a good mood, bring water/snacks, have multiple people with you to feed the parking meter when it expires, and maybe bring a spare boyfriend/husband (if applicable) to stand in the checkout line to help speed up that process :) 

Counting down to February 2013!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

The Rearranging Itch

While I've had a little more time on my hands this summer, I have been home working on projects that seem to always take the back burner throughout the year.  When I was a kid, I remember rearranging my bedroom and loving the fresh feel it gave to my space.  This summer, I got a new bed (I guess 10 years was long enough?) and I got the itch to rearrange!

I am big on looking at something special from my bed when I am falling asleep and waking up.  In my old apartment, it used to be my closet (are you surprised??) because clearly I love the items inside.  Here, it's now a collection of pictures or words that bring me comfort.

In my spare room, I literally just moved the furniture to different places.  I wanted to sit at my desk and look out the window instead of the wall.  And I wanted to create a little nook for me to read and put my feet up, so I pulled a chair and ottoman from my bedroom.  With a few creative geometry moves, it looks great now!

Before I did all this, I found a handy little online tool called Floorplanner.  It literally helps you create a floor plan of your home so you can drag and place items in new locations.  It's free and relatively easy to use (I watched the tutorial before I began!). And watch, you'll get the itch too :)

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Saved By the Card

If you know me, I love a good greeting card.  I have a stockpile for the perfect occasion, and I often hoard my favorites (or buy multiples so that I can make sure to keep one!).  There's something about a card stating exactly what you feel or what you wish you could say outloud.  Love. Love. Love the greeting card.

I have friends that share my affection, and they are often my best card givers :)  When I visit a new town or go on vacation, I will always stop at the local card shop to add to my collection.  One of my favorites is from Compendium Inc. (can't get enough of their Positively Green line) which often quote many of literature's best.  I must have dozens that capture the perfect sentiment.

"I felt it shelter to speak to you" ~ Dickinson

One of my recent favorite boxed sets is from Bob's Your Uncle.  It covers all "emergency" card situations for a wedding, birthday, illness, thanks, etc.  It's perfection in its simplicity and bold orange envelopes to accompany each card.  Such fun to have these handy!

The set of 8 reads: Get Well Sooner...Thanks a 1,000,000...And Many More...Happy Everything...Coochy Coochy Coo!...Missing You Already...Bon Voyage...You May Now Kiss the Bride...

Do yourself a favor and get this emergency kit- you will love to have them in a pinch.