Sunday, November 29, 2009

Holiday Dress Possibilities for those not on the Shopping Ban

There is definitely a plethora of gorgeous holiday dresses this year. I have only a few parties this Christmas and then it's off on our trip and I am envisioning more than a few shopping trips over the winter break. But these dresses... looooooove.

First up, Tucker The Dress $330 at Piper Lime. Silk. Envisioning a gorgeous feminine drape off of this one. & the color is perfect for the holidays. However... the price is too rich for my blood. Especially with how my December is turning out to be. I am sooooo on the personal shopping ban until I leave for our trip. I know it will be worth it to wait but it's so hard to be strong when there are such cuties out there! Too bad because I would love to see this one IRL.

This is Plenty by Tracy Reese, $295 again at Piper Lime. I love the coquettish look of the dress with its short puffy skirt. & the whole black-lace-overlay lace noir thing totally had me at hello. Um, some serious downward dogs would need to have been done for me to show off mah shoulders in this one. I think this is my favorite, but again, the price...

A more economical option here, from Victoria's Secret. This is the Lace Boatneck Dress and it's $129. I love the 3/4 sleeves on this one and I think the neckline is sooooo elegant. I also dig the scalloped edge of the skirt, but I wonder how skin tight this baby is, or how cheapy that underlayer feels in real life. Anyone seen / have / tried this one? I think this one is divine. No accessories needed. I am very curious. This is a gorgeous dress.

Last option is also from Victoria's Secret, the Strapless Lace dress, $79. Again, the scalloped lace edge of the skirt is fab-oo. I would have to cardi-party this one. I'm not really into the whole shoulder-showoff thing. Again, the lace noir look is gorgeous.

Anyone see anything out there they just had to have this holiday season? Have you seen any cute dresses you just can't get out of your mind?

Friday, November 27, 2009

Where is my Bedazzler & the Ingenue Coat Arrives!

Ladies do you remember the Bedazzler? That fabulous home appliance that fastened rhinestones to whatever you wanted back in the decade a few of us try not to remember, the 80's? My mom was the Queen of Bedazzlement. She was / is crafty and as I've mentioned earlier, tres chic, and thus of course had one. She bedazzled tons of things of mine; a denim jacket I can for sure remember was an early victim - er, example - of her creations. If you are unfamiliar, I'll give you the scoop. You took a strong backing piece of metal that the rhinestone was set in, hooked it thru the material, set the stone and the -- poof! -- you pressed down on the gun and the stone was then set in place. All the little doo-dad did I guess was set the prongs for you.
My point is -- I bought the jeweled tee from J.Crew that was $19.99 -- the name completely escapes me and it is no longer on the website -- and I wish J.Crew had just used the Bedazzler to get these babies on here!

Because when I look at the monstrous stone that is on the right side of the shirt - this huge, HUGE, stone is connected to this very thin shirt by a thread! Literally, a thread! Thank goodness I paid $16 for this thing ($19.99 plus 20% off) instead of the $55 or so J.Crew wanted FP!

If this shirt makes it thru 3 washes (I'm being very realistic, here) with all jewels attached, I will be surprised. Because this stone is heavy. If they had used the Bedazzler, those suckers wouldn't come loose. They wouldn't dare...

& now on to prettier topics... like the Ingenue Coat that has driven me mad during the last INSIDER promo. It's here, ladies. & me looooooooves. J'adore you, Ingenue coat. For serious.

Sleeve length is good, fit at the bust is good. Neckline is completely adorable, if not a little mashed from the shipping and travel. Length is just a tad bit shorter than I would have preferred but because the body fits great (& I tried on with some layers underneath) and the sleeves are not needing my cute little tailor's help, I am a happy girl, nonetheless.

Next post, wardrobe ideas for...

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thanksgiving, New J.Crew Purchases, and some IRLs

(Adam Sandler Turkey Song playing in the background)

Thanksgiving is my most favorite holiday of the whole year. I think because I just love turkey that much and love the traditions of gathering together for a great meal. I have the fondest thanksgiving memories, but none of them involve actually cooking the bird. I know. Aaaaah, turrrrkkkeeey, you complete me!

This is not to say that I wouldn't ever try, it's just I'm always an invited to guest (who brings lovely side items in plural) and my Japanese oven is ridiculously little (like 6-count muffin pan size, good enough for a medium chicken or a small pizza). Well this year I've come down with a nasty cold and can hardly taste my Theraflu, much less my beloved turkey. I'm on the mend and am hoping this clears up before tomorrow night.

Black & White fabulousness... on Tar-jhay Simply Shabby Chic sheets. LOL

& back to the J.Crew crack addiction...
Hubs has done the mail runs in the last few days (bless his heart for not mentioning the J.Crew boxes delivered en masse) and I received the silk black peony hair clip - slash -pin which now seems to have disappeared from the website. I thought it would be a cute addition to tons of outfits and multipurpose. When it showed up I had the idea to add it to my opera pearl strand. So here it is (all gussied up on my undone bed... which has been my home while at home since I've been sick).
With the opera pearl strand tripled up.

& then because it was so fancy, I had to pull out a dress to go with it. I couldn't wear it with my goofy PJ's, though I know you all would understand.

Wearing the J.Crew silver-shot tweed dress from last fall.

I also took advantage of the Extra 20% this evening (well, evening over here) and bought a few things:

I have wanted this top - The Frances Cherry Blossom top - since I first started stalking J.Crew not too long ago. & I refuse to pay the ridiculous eBay prices!! So here it is! Final price: $31. Not too shabby.

& the Olive top. I bought the other color FP when it was released. This one? $47!! This is a great deal, ladies. This top looks fabulous with the Minnie pants in black. It is si Jackie O.

Finally, the Jeweled Garland Bracelet. I wanted this one from the get-go but couldn't justify a bracelet for the full price this one started at. I have been thinking how great those vintage looking jewels would look in my grubby little hands, given I don't have anything else like it. Hoping it will work!

As an extra special OOTD, here's my little guy wearing Crewcuts to school - Everything but the shoes, which are Chuck Taylor's, not J.Crew's favored Jack Purcell's. A little cardigan, a little camp shirt and we are good to go. That's how my kindergardener rolls.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving, Ladies! Enjoy your time off!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Sequin Versatility is not an Oxymoron

Peek a boo. I see you.

The Downtown Look:
In the worst ways of indebtedness I owe this post on the J.Crew Stardust Pencil Skirt in the Gunmetal color. I first blogged about wondering why I like this skirt here, and then after receiving the skirt, I blogged about that here. Well, I've finally come around to creating some outfits with the skirt that I can't wait to wear out.

The Downtown Look:

J.Crew Stardust Pencil Skirt in Gunmetal
J.Crew Textured Jersey Silk Corsage tee in White
Joe's Jeans Denim Jacket
J.Crew Pearl Cluster bracelet
J.Crew Cluster Ring
J.Crew Pearl necklace
Alfani (Macy's) Black Lace Peep Toe heel with Black rhinestones
Black silk & glass pearl clutch, Japanese boutique and Valentine's Day gift from Hubs

I thought it would be interesting to do two-part post on a "downtown" & "uptown" look each for the skirt. You know, make my conscience feel better about buying the sequin thing and proving its versatility. Yes, this sounds weird. But sequin skirts sooo can be versatile.

The Uptown Look:
This look is so simple and yes, very cardi party, but you know, that's me. I feel safe and secure and I think the cardigan brings something proper and very proprietary to any outfit I'm wearing. For this look I went a very simple and choose to accessorize with just a cute little belt.

The Uptown Look:

J.Crew Stardust Pencil Skirt in Gunmetal
No Name Black Camisole
J.Crew Maya Cardigan in Black
J.Crew Satin Rosette Tie Belt in black and grey from Fall 08
J.Crew Cluster Ring
J.Crew Pearl Cluster Bracelet
Alfani (Macy's) Black Lace Peep Toe heel with Black rhinestones
Black silk & glass pearl clutch, Japanese boutique and Valentine's Day gift from Hubs

I apologize for the un-photoshopped / non-cropped photos. I am in limbo at the moment as both my hard drive and external hard drive are full (pack rat, you can say it). My situation is so dire, I can't even crop out that bra that is in this photo above or put those cute little frames around the photos that I've started to recently do. (But we're all great friends and if you came over, that bra would probably still be there) As I am a technically stunted gal, I am waiting for Hubs to swoop in and save the day and "fix" this. Melodramatic but true. Hopefully by tomorrow, I won't be in such a pinch. I also couldn't wait any longer to show you these IRLs and didn't think you'd mind the little distractions in the background.

UPDATE: Ladies, I am the owner of a 1 TB (is that even technically correct?) external hard drive. I never thought I'd see the day. See what an iTunes addiction gets ya??

Well, with that said, which look did you like best?

Friday, November 20, 2009

Ingenue Coat Adventures

The INSIDER 20% off promo yesterday caused a bit of a dilemma at 6am in my house. Followers of this blog may remember this post here where I said I loved the Ingenue coat and needed a 20% off promo to buy it. The coat had a full price of $325. With the promo it would then be slightly and minimally affordable at $260. But we're going to Paris for Christmas and New Years this year and the holiday warrants the purchase of a new coat (mais oui!). Now I don't do anything without overthinking each step of the process, so here's how the last few days have gone down:

Insider Promo Day 1: Stalk Ingenue Coat in Dusty Blossom & Black color. Fawn over Dusty Blossom. Pet computer screen. Discuss smart and chic-ness of Black and how it is perfect for Paris. Hem and Haw over which color I like best. Decide on BLACK. Put black size 6 in cart. Go to bed.

Insider Promo Day 2: Wake up promptly at 6am. Feel good about choosing black Ingenue (even though me loveth the dusty blossom fabulousness) coat. Log in to computer and check cart. & then... gaaaaaahhhhh.... find the dreaded orange ring of death around my beloved coat choice. You know the orange ring of death, right? The one that shows your cart item is now missing / removed / no longer yours to ogle. Size 6 black ingenues sold out (or might as well be... next availability? Jan 2010). PANIC SETS IN. Go back to coat page. Find dusty blossom -- the back up and close second choice -- also sold out in the size 6 until Jan 2010.

Lose all will to go on. Feel like cancelling Paris trip.

Then - light bulb moment - what about size 8 Petite?? I have a Carrie coat I bought earlier this year in a size 8 that is too big in the bust and too long in the sleeves. I wear an 8 Petite in pant length and conclude this may work. Check measurements of coat. Looks promising. Yes, they have black available. What am I waiting for? Add to cart and check out.

Spend rest of the day worrying about petite fit and if the coat will show up with incredibly short sleeves. Bite nails.

The Clincher: I came home from work, checked J.Crew and found --- HORRORS --- that now that the Insider promo is done, size 6 is available for immediate purchase. Miraculously, there is no wait til Jan 2010. If I want the size 6 in black, I can just push the button and ta da! Instant gratification... at 20% more than I paid that morning.

Feel wretched. (Looks for wine)

The end.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Why is My To-Do List Miles Long?

There's a mosquito in the house. There's a mosquito biting my arm and it's completely driving me crazy. I am not one for the outdoors. Which is ironic given my outfit today. Serengeti dress and sooo not the outdoorsy type. Getting ready for work today I felt I needed the Sasha Fierce that the Serengeti dress brings. There is no way I can have a bad day when I am in Collection. & Yup. Definitely not the outdoorsy type.

Wearing Today:
J.Crew Collection Serengeti dress from Fall 08
Banana Republic cotton brown cardigan
J.Crew skinny patent belt (in unnamed wine color)
Coach kitten heels with brown suede captoes and "c" canvas print

The best part about the Serengeti? I got it as a popback in Final Sale for about $79. I don't know about you but to me, I love the dress even more because of the great deal!

Hope the work week flies by for all of you!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Let the Gingham Times Roll (Ouch, even I have to say that's corny...)

Here's a close up shot of the Gingham "Checked Shirt" in Vintage Navy I just received this weekend from J.Crew. Very happy with the feel of it. I think I could comfortably hang out in this all day. It's a Sunday afternoon outfit, for sure. I wore it to yum cha with a friend and felt relaxed and put together while I scarfed down my favorite dim sum dumplings.
Wearing today:

J.Crew Cotton Checked Shirt in Vintage Navy
J.Crew Chiffon Rosette Cardi in Navy
Denim leggings, Uniqlo
Black leather riding boots, Nine West Takedown

Photo of my boots up close and personal-like.

As a preview of what's to come (and I know I have more than a few posts I owe -- ahem ahem, talking 'bout you, Stardust Pencil Skirt), here's a close up of the new Le Bal d'Hiver tee that came in the mail. It's not feathers, like I thought. The feathers are chiffon in a fantastic overlay with some gorgeous gunmetal colored jewels. They look colored that way in the photo because of the flash. I have to say I pulled this tee out and was a very happy girl. Now that it's 20% off, I'd definitely get it for Christmas gifts. The fabric is the ringspun, but I have to say it feels different - a little more stretchy than the ringspuns past (am I just imagining that?) and a feel that won't quit on you and stretch out by the end of the wear. Yes, I have to say I like this one. More IRLs to follow.

Have a great rest of your weekend ladies!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

The Stardust Pencil Skirt is Worth It!

I found the smallest J.Crew box I've ever received today in the mail. It was teeny, which is odd, given The Crew's penchant for larger-than-life-we-didn't-know-about-any-recession packaging. Oh but inside was something magical and larger than life. The Stardust Pencil Skirt in the Gunmetal color is here, ladies, and it is all sorts of fabulous. The color is pretty accurate as to what's shown online and the sequins are small, delicate and scattered organically I like to think, across the skirt itself. I have to say it did not disappoint, as the J.Crew Collection Dulce did. That one has been wrapped and will go back to J.Crew tomorrow. At $118, this skirt's price point is worth it. If this goes on sale or promo later, it will be a super deal.
My customs declaration form calls it a "Sequin Lace Skirt," which got my attention because there's nothing of that in the description online. But upon closer inspection you should be able to see that there is a web weaved behind the sequins. You can see my hand in the background of the material. I was trying to hold it up so you could see the translucence in the material.
Laying flat you can see the waist band, which is a very nice silk. I would say the skirt runs TTS, if not just a teensy bit on the smaller side. I took my normal size 6 and it fit great. But there is no "give" in this skirt so there will be no stretching. If you are betweens sizes I would definitely recommend maybe sizing up.

I'll post IRL pics tomorrow when I have more time and am not fighting away sleep. What do y'all think? Do you like it? Did you get it? Are you done with the sequins that seem to have overtaken everything at J.Crew? Are you on the shiny bandwagon?

Gap / BR / Old Navy Friends & Family Code! Help!

Ladies, I seem to recall going through my Googlereader yesterday and got lost ... But while I was out there in the blogosphere, I saw that someone was talking about a Gap/BR/Old Navy Friends and Family Promo going on now of 30%.

I would really like to get the online code. If you know of the code or know the wonderful gal out there who does, please give me some direction!

Hubs and the baby need a few things and I would love to use the coupon code to help save some dollars!

Thank you!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Cinderella Home from the Ball

BCBG gown
Opera length pearls doubled
J.Crew Pearl necklace
BCBG heels
A Chanel ribbon in my hair

Laughing it up with a friend

Again with my favorite gal in kimono - background you can see everyone in their party best.

Ok, admittedly, I am easily distracted. I was totally involved in seeing everyone else's dresses -- like my friend Miki's kimono -- and caught up in the moment that it was only at the end of the night that I realized I had taken something like 5 pictures! Well, it seemed like I took tons. But maybe that was posing for other cameras! He he

Moi et Miki in her gorgeous kimono

The work crew. Best people to work for / with EVER.

By the end of the night, my ensemble had turned into a cardi-party. It couldn't be helped. I was tired and ready to just chill at home with my little guy.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Politically Correct Pink

Has anyone else noticed how we can no longer say "pink." Like we can't just say the color pink anymore. It has to be "dusty pink," or "dusty blossom," or "blushed something whatever." Whatever happened to just plain pink?

Checking out The Outfit of the Day's post about her latest wishes from the J.Crew Collection, I spied the Blush Tweed Pencil Skirt - & hello! - didn't realize it was Collection until now. I fell in love with this skirt from the time it first came out and didn't hesitate to buy it the first week. I'm happy I did. I loved it before I knew it was Collection and I love it still. I just can't wear it all the time because it's one of those pieces people recognize right away... as in, Hey, you're wearing that skirt again... Oh well, gorgeous skirts are made for multiple wears. Especially soft tweed ones. &

J.Crew Collection Blushed Tweed Pencil Skirt
J.Crew Maya Cardigan in Dusty Blossom
American Eagle Aerie white pocket v-neck tee
American Eagle Pink Pearl strand, tied in a knot
J.Crew Collection Metallic Lulu Peep Toes
J.Crew Metallic Guava (?) Thompson Tote
J.Crew cluster ring
J.Crew skinny leather belt in a dark wine color (can't remember the color name)
& ....

Oh, yes, ladies. The Bug Pin.

I was never an anti-fan of the bug pin. I know there were many, many, many mixed emotions about the bug pin. From absolute despisal to downright loathing. But for me, I thought it was a cute little guy. Definitely not worth the fanfare J.Crew made up for it (couture stitching, or whatever? I think not). But for a little pin, I've always thought it adorable.

Heading to a ball tonight. A ball! & getting all dressed up to hit the town. I'll take tons of pictures and post the beautiful dresses I see. I'll be wearing a black formal BCBG dress and black BCBG sandals and tons of pearls. I just watched that episode of Gossip Girls last night where Chuck opens his SpeakEasy and everyone wears all those gorgeous 1920's outfits and it's sort of inspired me to put together something similar. Will keep you posted soon!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Lazy Sunday in All Its Glory

Today's lazy day outfit was all in the name of comfort and moping around the house, the way a great Sunday should be spent.
Sweater: J.Crew Marled Wool Cardigan
Black Leggings: Tart from Saks
White T-Shirt: Juniors Dept at the P/X
Boots: Nine West Takedowns
Necklace: Tiffany Elsa Peretti tear drop

Me loveth the comfiness of flat boots.

The baby & I, being on our own since Hubs is enjoying some down time in Chicago with his brother, decided to go to the wonderful little pancake place down the street for breakfast, Jakkepoes. Sooo not on my low carb diet but so what. It's Sunday. That's reason enough.

The neighborhood.

The goods.

Then we popped into Starbucks for a mommy-pick-me-up and lo and behold, they had the most GORGEOUS Bodum French Press. Me loveth the french press. It's the way I make my coffee at home most days, but the one I'd been using was a little too small for my liking (and didn't feed my caffeine addiction nearly enough). So I thought, OMG the color on this one! & I need a bigger one. I need a bigger one, right? So how perfect that I would find you, gorgeous french press from Bodum! I needed you and here you are! Well, after that dramatic fanfare I needed a new holiday mug, because well, because. So here is the new french press, in all it's gorgeous holiday metallic red glory, looking fine and fabs in my kitchen.
I'm kind of a small time Bodum fan and find everything about their products so interesting. I recently bought a bunch of their glasses and love them because they're double-walled which nicks that condensation issue. Your glass never breaks a sweat, never leaves a ring on the table. It just sits there. Looking purdy.

Lookin' good, Good Lookin'!