Monday, November 30, 2009

Outfit log: Mixing neutrals

For the last several months I have been falling asleep to mental outfit planning. That is... instead of counting sheep (or utilizing any other fall-asleep method), I have been planning my outfit for the next day. Sometimes I come up with the whole thing... sometimes only parts or an idea of what it will be. This makes me feel only slightly obsessed and superficial, but it gets me to sleep and clears my mind of work or life related anxiety. Last night I went to sleep thinking that the outfit I would wear would...
  1. be professional (i.e. meeting approrpriate).
  2. include pants (no skirts, dresses, or tights!).
  3. allow me to show off my Thanksgiving pedicure.
Mission: Accomplished!

Occasion: Work Monday 11/30/09 (budget meeting)

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cardigan - jcrew outlet, remixed
wide leather belt - mark shale sale, remixed
wide leg pants - the limited, 2007
peep toe flats - clarks outlet
abalone necklace - gift

I've had a hard time styling these pants because they are an awkward length on me: too long for flats and too short for most heels! These mini-wedges were perfect, and took care of goal #3!

11 30 09 makeup

I was a bit rushed for time on the makeup front, so I went with my basic contoured eye look and pink lipstick (details here).

I hope you had a great Thanksgiving! I'll do a recap of mine sometime this week :)

Guilty pleasures

Thanks to the lovely (and DAMN stylish) Onika for nominating me for a blog award a couple weeks back! My duties as such are to list 5 guilty pleasures and nominate 5 other bloggers to do the same.

So first up, my guiltiest pleasures:

  1. Degrassi. Have you ever watched this show? I am like the ultimate fanatic. The show differs from other modern teen-targeted programs (like 90210 and Gossip Girl) by presenting controversial and relevant issues that teens in today's world face (teen pregnancy, abortion, teen parents, homosexuality, molestation, eating disorders, date rape, HIV/AIDS, cutting, gun violence... the list goes on) but not only for the spectacle of the issues. More so the show uses these situations to create fantastic learning moments! And the cast is diverse in so many respects. I only call this a guilty pleasure because the show is really aimed towards middle school-aged kids, and is pretty freaking cheesy sometimes. (I was also a Full House addict back in the dizzay, so I got conditioned to like cheese early!)
  2. Serious vocal sessions while driving in traffic solo. My absolute go-to method for feeling better after a crappy day is to belt out a favorite song while driving. It's ridiculous and I am absolutely certain that I look like a lunatic, but I just don't give a crap. Something about speeding along down the highway with the radio blaring, singing my heart out just gives me this cathartic release that makes everything seem better. When I quit smoking cigarettes (almost THREE years ago!) my secret weapon was singing in the car.
  3. Jalepeno-flavored chips. Enough said.
  4. Lazy weekends. Sometimes I feel guilty for not taking advantage of all of the great things to do and see in the Bay Area... but I just love me some lazy weekends.
  5. Creating wishlists on various internet clothing retailers. I have no idea why this practice is so pleasurable (it's like a tease!), but I just can't get enough.
Now my nominations:
  1.  Kendra of From Tomboy to Fashionista
  2. Claire of Mamuska Marie
  3. Lauren of This Little Piggie
  4. Becky of Guilding the Frilly
  5. Hillary of byhillary
Don't feel obligated to participate, but if you wish I would love to hear what 5 of my fave bloggers consider their guilty pleasures :)

    Tuesday, November 24, 2009

    Outfit log: Springing through Fall

    I've been wearing a lot of solid colors lately (purple or green, anyone?) so I thought I'd take a page out of Clare's book and sport a vividly-printed sundress layered beneath and over some more weather-appropriate pieces.

    Occasion: Work (no meetings/events) - Tuesday 11/24/09 (my dad's 67th bday... Happy Birthday, Papa!)

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    Outfit details:
    sundress - thrifted in St. Louis, temporarily shortened by me (like this)
    lavender cardigan - target, old
    tights - target, new
    mary janes - nicole via dsw, remixed

    The skirt on this dress is a little longer than how I am wearing it, and it just hits my legs at this weird place that I don't like. So, I shortened it with the help of two belts (much like I did previously to a hawaiian dress). The only downside to this ensemble is the lightweightness of the dress makes me feel like I might just be running around in tights and a cardigan!

    11 24 09 makeup

    Makeup details:
    all over eye lid - mac "retrospeck" eye shadow
    eye lid crease - mac "saddle" eye shadow
    eye liner - mac "espresso" eye shadow applied with this brush (it's the best!)
    eyebrow fill - mac "saddle" eye shadow applied with the same brush as above (seriously, get it)
    lipstick - mac lustre lightly lipstick in ripe
    clinique almost powder makeup spf 15
    clinique all about eyes concealer
    bobbi brown blush

    I did a toned down eye today, using only two colors on the lid and a third shadow on both my top and bottom lash lines as liner. I've been a eye-shadow-as-liner user since 1998 when I got a makeover at Mac in preparation for my mom's wedding. I really feel this is this is one of the most flattering and EASY ways to make your eyes pop! The key is to get a slanted brush like this one (don't be fooled by the "brow brush" description, this brush does double duty!). I recommend the Mac brush because the bristles aren't too stiff or too soft... juuuuuuuust right :)

    After this post I am on holiday-hiatus, as I'm sure a bunch of my fellow US-residing blogging fashionistas are, so I will bid you adieu until Monday. Have a great rest of the week, and if you're stateside... enjoy the food, family, friends, and refreshments!

    Monday, November 23, 2009

    Outfit log: Warm & cozy

    I snagged these thick knit tights from Target yesterday and thought all evening about how to wear them today. First I thought about shoes... my go to these days would have been my black boots (shocker, right?), but I've been sporting those like whoa and I thought some flats would be comfier and a nice change, hence the loafers. I'm not totally extremely yowza excited about this outfit, but it's warm and comfortable and I feel cute enough, so there you go!

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    Occasion: Work (no events/meetings) - Monday 11/23/09

    Purple sweater - forever21, 2008, remixed
    gray wool skirt - jcrew, 2007
    black knit tights - target
    black loafers - me too
    necklace - forever21, gift

    I adore this sweater, but it's from Forever21 and the quality is pretty craptastic. I'm gonna hopefully try to trim the giant pilling bit with my sweater shaver... but I'm a little skeptical that the outcome will be good. We shall see I suppose!

    11 23 09 makeup

    I wanted to decorate only my top lash line today, so I did a little purple mixing on the top lid (like this), followed by dark (nearly black) purple eyeshadow as liner, on top of which I glided on some mac fluidline in blacktrack. I also filled in my brows again, and I'm 80% sure I like it.

    In other news, I bought a hair dryer yesterday! My old one died on me about a year ago and I never replaced it, since I don't dry my hair very often. But lately it's been so chilly in the morning and going to work with wet hair just drives me crazy! In order to avoid this situation I've been straightening my hair a lot (I wash it the night before and then straighten with a flat iron in the morning). I love my curly hair, but sometimes straightening it is just easier because the style lasts longer (3-4 days instead of 1-2 curly) and I don't have to worry about walking around with wet hair.

    But... now I have a blow dryer with a diffuser and I think it may change my life! This morning was my first time using it, and I am so ridiculously happy! I left the house with dry curltastic hair, which didn't take 5 million years to style and I didn't end up with a head full of frizz (both major hair dryer-fears of mine).

    Sunday, November 22, 2009

    Outfit log: Sweater wrap-dress remix!

    I really wanted to wear this Tarjais sweater wrap-dress again, but didn't want it to look exactly like last time I wore it (a constant struggle with wrap dresses), so I switched up the tights, necklace, and hairdo!

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    Occasion: Work (event) - Friday 11/20/09

    sweater wrap dress - target, remixed
    abalone necklace - gift from Sades, remixed
    tights - limited, remixed
    boots - blowfish, remixed

    I know I should probably be slightly embarrassed to post a picture of me blowing a kiss, but I'm not! The kiss is aimed at all my lovely readers who just leave the sweetest comments. You make me blush, laugh, smile, and sometimes even do an audible "awww" when I read what you've written... I just feel so lucky to have this blogging community in my life! Okay... enough gushing :)

    11 20 09  makeup detail

    For this look I chose the exact same makeup as last time, except for two details: eye brows and lips. I never do anything to my brows (aside from plucking or getting them threaded), but having been an avid Keiko Lynn stalker follower for the last several months I just cannot get over how freaking gorgeous her makeup is, especially those perfectly done brows and exquisitely colored lips! Ah! Since I have pretty dark brows I never thought to shade them in at all. Well, Friday morning as I was applying my various eye shadows I decided to throw some eyebrow-colored shadow right into my brow line, and I am probably now addicted to this practice. And on my lips I'm wearing my favorite bobbi brown gloss in pink sugar.

    Saturday, November 21, 2009

    Outfit log: Dressin' up my jeans, part deux

    As you may know, I recently (i.e. earlier this week) tried out dressing up my jeans for a more pulled together casual look. Since I had so much fun doing it the first time, I thought why not do it again?!

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    Occasion: Work (no events/meetings) - Thursday 11/19/09

    scarf - burberry, gift from mom, remixed
    dark lime green cardigan - target, remixed
    light green camisole - volcom, from a surf shop in santa cruz
    jeans - gap, remixed
    mary janes - nicole via dsw, remixed
    necklace - gift from Sades, remixed
    belt - mark shale (st. louis), remixed

    Since I freaking love these mary janes to pieces, I thought my skinny-ish jeans would be the perfect shape to highlight the shoes' amazingness. I hope to slightly change this look in the future with either a leopard-print belt (like this one) or a non-neutral heel (like these). Both said items are on my wish list because I have very few non-neutral shoes, and I just need more leopard-print in my life!

    Friday, November 20, 2009

    Outfit log: Butterfly inspiration

    Yesterday's outfit (pictured below) was inspired by these sweet butterfly earrings I scored at an antique store on Piedmont Avenue a few weekends ago. Nic and I stopped into the store after lunch down the street and as I was browsing through the jewelry she spotted these lovelies, which were only $8! 

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    Since the earrings are so colorful, I didn't want to combine too many other bright colors, so I stuck to a teal/gray/black color palette for the rest of my ensemble.

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    Occasion: Work (meeting AND event!)

    earrings - antiqued on Piedmont Ave. in Oakland
    western shirt - lucky brand outlet, years ago, remixed
    gray sweater dress - h&m, remixed
    teal tights - american apparel outlet, remixed
    boots - blowfish "wisker", remixed like whoa!
    belt - jessica simpson via dsw, remixed

    I am trying to get more into the habit of layering pieces over and under dresses, since the Bay Area not only requires layering skills in the fall, but throughout the year. And since dresses are just one piece, it is more of a challenge to style them up differently!

    In other news, I am getting so excited for Thanksgiving next week! Nic and I will be driving down to Los Angeles to see my California family (aunt, uncle & cousin) on Wednesday afternoon and are staying through Saturday or Sunday. I'm trying to take a more active role in the planning of dinner this year, since usually I just show up to follow directions and I'd like to use my event planning skills outside of work! My aunt and I have been emailing back and forth about what we'll be having... and my stomach growls just thinking about it! My favorite part about the holiday season is definitely the food :)

    Thursday, November 19, 2009

    Outfit log: Dressin' up my jeans

    I've noticed that since starting this blog I have strayed more and more from wearing jeans during the work week when I take my outfit photos. The reason behind this shift has got to be that I feel so much more stylish in skirts and dresses, and am bored with the way I have been wearing jeans for the last few years (with sneakers, a cotton top, and a cute hoodie). Yesterday I made it my goal to counter the boredom by dressing up my jeans with cute heels, a pretty color top, statement necklace and neutral blazer.

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    Occasion: Work (no meetings)

    blazer - zara, remixed
    purple faux-wrap shirt - michael stars, thrifted, remixed
    jeans - joe's "muse", tj maxx, remixed
    mary janes - nicole via dsw, remixed
    necklace - gift from mom, remixed
    white tank - jcrew outlet

    Since I am a fairly tall chick (5'8") with a shorter torso and longer legs, finding jeans of the right length has always been a challenge. In high school, for instance, I was plagued with the "hovering" curse... all of my jeans would end up being just a little bit too short making me look like I was preparing for a flood (probably not really that bad, but it sure seemed that way back then). Fortunately for me, these days jeans come in a plethora of inseams. I actually now have this pair of Joe's jeans (in the "muse" style) in two different lengths, one for flats, sneakers and sandals, and the pair pictured above for heels and boots. Yesterday was the first time wearing my longer Joe's with heels, and I think they look pretty darn good together! How do you dress up your jeans?

    Wednesday, November 18, 2009

    Outfit log: Weekend edition

    My weekend was awesome and a little crazy. Nic and I headed up to Sacramento on Friday to go to our good friend Lacey's birthday party. Since Lacey lives in a spacious 3 bedroom house with a big backyard (unheard of in Oakland or SF for gals our age), she decided to hire a reggae DJ and have a big house party. I had an absolute blast, though as usual went to sleep way before the party ended (Nic and I stayed in the guest bedroom).

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    The next morning we nursed our hangovers with some greasy food and then Nic and I headed back to the Bay Area and just chilled at home all day.

    Sunday I got to see my wonderful and amazing friend Ramona, which was just an amazing treat! We had bad Mexican food (really sad), but then did a little shopping/browsing along Lakeshore Ave. Ramona ended up napping at our pad while Nic and I took the kitties in for their shots (they were so good!), and then got ready for her date that night.

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    It was awesome to spend some quality time with Ramona... she moved to NYC a couple of years ago, and I miss her so much! She was the first friend I made in the Bay Area :)

    I'm not usually a big outfit logger on the weekends, but I thought this simple and casual ensemble was blog-worthy.

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    Occasion: Hanging at home


    jeans - seven for all mankind via tjmaxx, remixed
    green sweater - max studio outlet, remixed
    gray tie-belt - from wrap sweater
    leopard-print flats - rocket dog via dsw, remixed muchisimo!
    necklace - surprise gift from g/f, remixed
    cat - Chloe!

    I love this green sweater, and first threw on some skinny jeans to go with it. I was thinking that since it's so shapeless and roomy it would go nicely with tighter elements on the bottom. For some reason that combo just didn't jive with me Friday morning, so on a whim I threw on these jeans and belted the sweater with a gray tie-belt stolen from a wrap sweater. I was really pleased with the result!

    Monday, November 16, 2009

    Outfit log: OTK, baby!

    I have been totally dying to try the whole over the knee (otherwise known by cool people as "OTK") sock trend... since about 1996 when Cher sported thigh high stockings in Clueless (yes, this is my second Clueless reference on this here blog... remember my first?). Back in the Clueless era I was a self-conscious 6th grader with body image troubles who wore a uniform to school everyday. Good thing now I'm now a fearless* fashion blogger willing to try new things outside of my clothing comfort zone!

    *Okay so fearless might be a stretch... you get the point.

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    Occasion: Work (no meetings/events)


    Unfortunately I don't have all of the product names, but for the eyelids I used a little glittery powder all over the lid (mac retrospeck) followed by a matte lavender. Then I did a purple in the middle part of the crease, and a darker purple/blue in the very corners, blending in with my uppper lash line. I used the same darker purple/blue to line my lower lashline using a slanted brush, then used the same brush with a deep purple shadow to line my uppper lash line. Maybelline blackest black great lash mascara (my absolute favorite) to finish it off! Oh, and bobbi brown shimmer lip gloss in pink sugar on the lips. Love it!

    gray wrap sweater - gap
    pink short sleeve cotton top - kohls, 2007
    short purple wool skirt - h&m, remixed
    sheer leggings - h&m
    OTK socks - hand me down from mom
    boots - blowfish "wisker" via, remixed
    necklace - surprise gift from Nic last week :)

    I was really inspired by other bloggers to try out this look. The three that come to mind are Jen, of Jen Loves Kev, Mariel, of preppy with a twist, and Kyla of blue collar catwalk. Check out how Jen, Mariel and Kyla sport the OTKs, and then go get yourself some (or not... no pressure!).

    Have you braved any fashion risks lately? How did they turn out?

    Wednesday, November 11, 2009

    Thank you, Veterans!

    I want to take a moment on this Veteran's Day to give a huge shout out to all of the US Military Veterans out there. You serve your country so people like me don't have to! I do not have the courage, strength or coping skills to go through what you have, and I appreciate your service for this reason in particular. I want to give thanks in particular to the young women and men currently serving overseas in Iraq & Afghanistan. Please know that your fellow countrypeople are thinking of you, and want you to get home safely!

    Nic in Iraq

    While I have a feeling that not many vets out there are reading fashion blogs, I do know one in particular who might just check this out. I dedicate this post to the love of my life who served in the US Army for four years including one year spent deployed in Iraq. Nicholette, you inspire me with your courage and wisdom. I am so incredibly proud of what you have accomplished so far in your life, and I can't wait to celebrate all of your future successes with you. You are amazing, and I love you :)

    Outfit log: Complementing my new favorite color

    So yesterday's outfit wasn't really one of my favorites. I'm still not sure if it was the outfit itself, or that I was having a bad body-image day, but all in all I can't deem it a success.

    Oh well! You win some, you lose some :)

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    11 10 09 017 11 10 09 040 makeup detail 11 10 09 045 makeup detail 11 10 09 028

    Occasion: Work (casual meeting)


    basic base (both clinique almost powder makeup & all about eyes concealer)
    mac "retrospeck" powder eye shadow
    mac fluidline in blacktrack (liner on top lash line)
    estee lauder bronze goddess sheer lip tint (it's a lipstick) in fuscia

    Since my outfit was pretty casual I decided to do a thick black cream liner on my top lash line, over some shimmery eye shadow. I love how this simple, yet noticeable, eye looks with pink lipstick!

    dark lime green cardigan - target (new!)
    purple lacy top - forever 21, gift
    lavender tank - jcrew outlet, remixed
    jeans - joe's jeans "muse", remixed
    leopard print flats - rocket dog via dsw, remixed
    belt - jessica simpson via dsw, remixed

    I have been looking for this exact color cardigan for months, ever since I saw an episode of The Hills (is anyone else ridiculously addicted to that show?) where Lauren Conrad sported a similar one. The color is so now, and complements one of the most prominent colors in my wardrobe: purple. I went with a purple lacy top, which is really only wearable uncovered for a night out, layered over a lavender tank to play up the complementary colors. Leopard print goes with everything, so I thought my trusty flats would work out well. I'm not completely dissatisfied with the look, but think maybe a skinnier/lighter wash jean might work a wee bit better next time. I have so many other ideas for this cardigan, so you'll have to stay tuned :)

    Tuesday, November 10, 2009

    Outfit log: Sugar plum fairy

    I'm trying something a little bit new in this post, so tell me what you think! Since I put in effort every morning to put on makeup (and often use different techniques/colors), I thought it might be fun to share what I wear... on my face! It seems like a lot writing it down, but I assure you it's all very light (takes less than 10 minutes to apply), and it's really all about the eyes :)

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    Occasion: Work (event)


    clinique almost powder makeup spf 15
    clinique all about eyes concealer
    mac "retrospeck" powder eye shadow
    mac "embark" powder eye shadow (outer crease)
    mac "saddle" powder eye shadow (inner crease & lower lash line liner)
    mac fluidline in dipdown (liner on top lash line)
    mac lustre lightly lipstick in ripe
    bobbi brown blush

    I am a big fan of providing eye contour, which I do so with layered colors usually in the same color family, but different shades. For yesterday's look I started with a light shimmery eye shadow all over my lid, then applied a medium tan (mac's "saddle") to the crease. Following the tan, I applied a richer more chocolatey/reddish brown (mac's "embark) to the outer corners, blending into the upper lash line. For liner, I applied the tan eye shadow to my lower lash line using a slanted brush, then used the same type of slanted brush to apply a cream eye liner (mac's fluidline) to give my upper lash line a little cat eye flavor. And of course I finished the look with black mascara.

    This was the first time creating this particular look, and I think it worked well! It might be a little much for some people during the day, but I personally think using browns instead of blacks creates a softer look, appropriate for day time.

    sweater wrap dress - target (new!)
    black tights - limited
    boots - blowfish "wisker" via, remixed
    necklace - anthropologie
    abalone ring - bday gift from girlfriend

    It's official: I am addicted to wrap dresses. They are just so comfortable, flattering, and easy!  I totally scored on this awesome dress on Sunday at Target. I love that it's a thicker sweater-like fabric, which kept me warm and snug, and I love the rich plum color and ruffle detail. I actually ended up layering the sweater dress over a shorter black jersey sundress, which prevented accidental thigh exposure and added even more coziness to the ensemble. And of course I'm sporting my favorite boots. Thanks for all the boot love, you guys, I obviously am utterly enamored with these babies!