Friday, December 30, 2011

Snowstorms & Sequins

There has been an absence of outfit posts lately...mainly because we've been stuck indoors with blizzard-like conditions (including 35 mph winds and 15 degree weather).  Thankfully, the snow let up enough yesterday for us to run outside & quickly get pictures taken.  While not ideal for super-chilly weather, this happens to be my new favorite layering method.  Wearing a sequin tank as a vest adds a bit of sparkle & interest to otherwise classic pieces.

What I'm wearing:
Forever 21 chambray shirt, Ann Taylor sequin top (on sale here), Tahari blazer (thrifted), Style & Co. jeans, Colin Stuart boots (via eBay), Fossil watch (here), Target earrings, Lips: Maybelline Fifth Ave Fuschia


Thursday, December 29, 2011

Point Well Taken

Trends in footwear may come & go, but one constant that will never fade is the pointy-toe pump.  For those of you who aren't fans of the super-platform, these are a ladylike & leg-elongating alternative.  Take a look at these celebrity styling examples:

Notice how they look just as chic with rolled up boyfriend jeans as they do with a dress or tailored shorts...making them a versatile option year-round.  Here are my penny-pincher picks (all under $50):

ALDO Mease - $38.49 (extra 30% off right now)


Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Few Collections

One of the benefits of moving all your items into a new closet room is being able to see everything at the same time.  However, it also has made me realize how much I have.  Since the beginning of a new year is a great time to take stock (and maybe purge a little), I thought I'd share with you a few of the "collections" I've amassed over the years:

Bracelets (newly organized on acrylic stands received for Christmas)

Scarves (can a girl ever have enough?)

Blazers (yes, I have 4 in black...yet I can justify why each one is different & needed)

Stripes (hoping to add more to this rack soon...)


Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Make a Statement

I've never been one for subtlety, especially when it comes to jewelry.  Whether I'm stacking multiple bracelets for an arm party (as seen here) or wearing a big bold cocktail ring, I like my accessories to stand out.  My latest obsession?  The statement necklace.  It's the perfect way to make everything from a little black dress to a plain white tee more interesting & unique.  I've rounded up some budget-friendly options (all less than $35) - colorful, edgy or sparkling...there's something here for everyone:


Monday, December 26, 2011

Neutral Tones

As I have discussed before, I often have "fit challenges" with clothing and frequently take items into my tailor (mentioned here).  That is why I was so excited when I heard about eShakti.  They are an online retailer with clothes that you can have custom-made to fit you.  Sounds like it would be expensive...but it isn't!  Find a piece that you like, send them your exact measurements and they will make it to fit you perfectly! 

They offered to send me something from their store & I chose this two-toned blouse.  I loved the feminine details (slightly puffed shoulders and 3/4-length sleeves)...and though I paired it with a skirt here, I could also see wearing this untucked over some skinny jeans (or faux leather leggings).

eShakti has also generously offered to give $20 off any purchase for PPF readers!  Go visit their site & find something you love - then use the code PENNYPINCHER0811 at checkout (expires 12/31/11 - not applicable to overstock items).  Remember, you can choose from their standard sizing or provide your measurements for a perfectly tailored fit!  Also check out their Facebook page (here) and follow them on Twitter (here) for new product alerts & sale notifications!

In case you're wondering...yes, it was snowing while we took these pictures!

What I'm wearing:
eShakti blouse c/o (here), Gap skirt, Anne Klein NY tights (here), INC pumps (on sale here), J. Crew earrings, Bracelets: Vintage & J. Crew, Zara clutch, Lips: L'Oreal Target Red, Nails: Nicole by OPI Deeply In Love

Disclosure: eShakti sent the blouse free of charge for me to review.  I was not paid for this post and all opinions expressed here are my own.


Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry & Bright

May your holidays be filled with love, laughter & joy!


Friday, December 23, 2011

Steals Under $30

I haven't done a SUT in December yet, because I figured most of you would be buying for others this month.  But, if you happen to have leftover spending money, there are some amazing deals to be had.  Here is a chic winter look I've put together using pieces less than $30 - just add some tights (if it's too cold for bare legs where you live) & a bright red lip for the perfect finishing touch!

(click collage to enlarge photo)

J. Crew Factory Long Button Gloves - $19.50 (use code MUSTSHOP to get an extra 20% off)


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Holiday Glamour

When we received the invitation to my husband's company Christmas party, it stated the dress code was "holiday attire".  That seemed very cryptic to me, so I had him ask around the office to find out what people typically wear to this event.  The answer?  A sweater and slacks.  Clearly, he asked another man.  Unsatisfied with this response, I decided to put together a look that met the requirements (wasn't overly dressy), but still felt glamorous & special.  Of course, I ended up getting bronchitis and we couldn't go...but this is what I'd planned on wearing.

What I'm wearing:
Gap blouse & trousers (also worn with green here), Vintage stole (via eBay), Forever 21 necklace, ELLE pumps (last seen here), J. Crew clutch (on sale here), Lips: L'Oreal Le Gloss Mystic Mauve


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Currently Obsessed

I know many of you have already heard about this site, but I have been waiting until the full launch so I can invited ALL my readers to check it out. is a brand new shopping community where you can "stalk" your favorite fashion bloggers & see their wish list of items that they are loving at the moment (sort of like Pinterest for us fashion-lovers).  It's a great way for me to share with you some of my recent finds & trends that I plan on investing in. 

Just visit and create your account...then click on 'All Bloggers' or type in the name of the blog you want to search for.  Here is what mine looks like:

Then just click on the 'Stalk Me' button - you can view my list of items & click on the links to buy!  You can stalk as many people as you want - I'm already following more than 20 of my favorite bloggers.  I have found the easiest way to view all the items at once is to click on the "Currently Stalking" tab and look from there.  You can also click on "Latest Obsessions" and search by category (beauty, fashion, lifestyle, etc.).

I will do my best to update mine frequently & I hope you have fun following!


Wardrobe Essentials ~ Winter

Tomorrow is officially the first day of winter & it is already starting to feel like it in NY.  Many places have experienced their first snowfall and if the forecasts are correct, we are in for a long, cold season.  Here are my top 10 essential items* (excluding accessories) to get you through this winter looking stylish! 

1) Wool dress coat
2) Cashmere sweater
3) Puffy coat
4) Winter boots
5) Platform pumps
6) Black skinnies
7) Ankle boots
8) Plaid shirt
9) Cocktail dress
10) Fur or faux fur vest

*If you're new to PPF, these photos are ideas to inspire you to create your perfect shopping details are included.  You can go back & view my picks for fall (here), spring (here) and summer (here).


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Layering Season

Even though I live in a place where it snows all winter long, I still subscribe to the belief that you can wear multiple layers without looking frumpy.  It's all about choosing classic pieces and balancing proportions.  This silk blouse/chunky sweater/blazer combination keeps me toasty warm and works equally well with skinny jeans, slim-cut trousers or a straight skirt & wool tights.

What I'm wearing:
J. Crew blouse (here), Old Navy sweater (on sale here), Banana Republic blazer, Style & Co. skinnies, BCBG booties (last seen here), Express bracelet, Michael Kors watch, Rafē New York clutch (via eBay)

I'm guest posting today for my girl, Alysson, over at Simplicity is Ultimate Sophistication & talking about the top-handle bag trend + providing some affordable options!


Monday, December 19, 2011

365 Hangers Gift Card Winner

Thank you to everyone who entered - don't forget to keep checking the 365 Hangers site for new items & great savings every day!  And our winner is...

Karen (@FashionStarr) - congratulations!  I will be emailing you with your gift card code shortly...please let me know what you pick out!!

Thank you to 365 Hangers for hosting this fabulous giveaway!


Closet Reveal ~ Part 1

As you all know, this has been a major project of ours since we moved into the house back in early September (read the first post here).  I am thrilled to show you the first glimpses of my finished wardrobe room.  Since we were working on a tight budget, my husband installed everything himself. (I love you honey - thanks for all your hard work!) 

I didn't want built-in cabinets for my clothes, because I like the open feel this has and I can see everything so much better this way.  We may add shelves on top of the chrome brackets, but I haven't decided yet.  In order to fit everything in here, I am storing some out-of-season items & will swap them with my winter pieces come springtime. 

My crystal chandelier (found on Craig's List for $25) creates a nice ambience & completes the old-Hollywood vibe of the space.  This dresser was an amazing Goodwill find (see the transformation here), the mirror was a recent Hobby Lobby purchase (during a 50% off sale) and the silver tray came from Marshall's (for just $30).  The only missing piece here are these acrylic jewelry stands that would be ideal for organizing my bracelets & watches. 

This wall of shoes holds all the pairs I am currently wearing (with tall boots lined up underneath).  To keep the room balanced, we will be installing two more shelves along the wall by the door so I can store my sandals, open-toed heels & flats.

We already owned this leather bench, but didn't have room for it in our master.  I added the throw pillows (faux fur: Pier One - bought using a $25 birthday gift card, beaded: Bed, Bath & Beyond on clearance).  I'm looking for suggestions on what to do with this window - some kind of roman shades, maybe?

Overall, I am so pleased with how it turned out (given the small 10x10 space we had to work with) and everytime I walk down the hall & look inside, it just makes me happy.  Check back for part 2 of the transformation to see the vintage decor items I'm adding & the complete finished product!


Friday, December 16, 2011

Recent Purchases

As much as I talk about wish lists and things I would love to add to my wardrobe, I typically exercise a fair amount of restraint when it comes to buying things for myself.  After all, this blog is called "penny-pincher" fashion for a reason.  That being said, I thought I would share with you the items I have purchased over the last couple of months.  (Notice that nothing was bought at full price!The only thing I didn't include below is a vintage mink stole that I found on eBay for $18 (to be featured in an outfit post soon). 

Gap Sweater - purchased on Black Friday for 50% off (on sale & different colors available here)

Old Navy Wedge Booties - bought in store on clearance for $13 (on sale here)

J. Crew Crystal Brûlée Bracelet - via eBay for $30 (this color sold out online - buy other colors here)

Ann Taylor Leopard Print Blouse - purchased on Black Friday off the clearance rack + an additional 50% off (sold out online - check your local stores)

LC Lauren Conrad Black Skinny Flare-leg Jeans - bought on sale & used coupon for an extra 30% off (on sale here)


Thursday, December 15, 2011

Simple Things

Sometimes the outfits I love most are also the simplest - there is nothing contrived or over-styled...just easy, chic pieces.  A silky blouse in an interesting print (with faux leather detailing) and high-waisted flare jeans (my new favorite pair) is the perfect example of a simple combination that is anything but boring. 

What I'm wearing:
H&M blouse, J. Brand Jeans (c/o from Lucky FABB - on sale here), Calvin Klein boots (via eBay) , Urban Expressions clutch (here), Accessorize necklace (here), Kenneth Cole ring, Nails: OPI Royal Rajah Ruby


Wednesday, December 14, 2011

My First Birchbox

When my Twitter BFF & fellow blogger, The Stylish Housewife, gifted me with a 3-month Birchbox subscription for my birthday, I was so excited!  For those of you who aren't familiar with Birchbox, it is a monthly subscription service that provides you deluxe samples of 4-5 different beauty products (for just $10 a month).  If you like one of the samples, you can then order the full-size version.  I filled out a survey with my specific interests & skin care needs and they hand-picked items to send to me.  So, since this is my first one, I thought I would show you what I received & give you my full review...


Isn't the packaging adorable?!  And here's what was inside:

1) Harvey Prince - Ageless
What it says: Most scents just smell pretty, but this one is designed to make you smell more youthful - high tech, no?
My review: I am usually very picky about scents, so I was surprised when I liked this one.  It smells very clean at first (pink grapefruit & pomegranate) and then the afternote (jasmine) is a little sweeter.

2) RECHARGE EBOOST - Orange Natural Energy Booster
What it says: Bounce back post-party with this tangy citrus energy booster, packed with a mega-dose of nutrients.
My review: The orange flavor was really tasty - not sure if I felt more energetic, but I like the idea of boosting my immune system without having to take another pill.

3) Benefit Cosmetics - The POREfessional
What it says: Camouflage visible pores with this velvety face primer.  The translucent formula works wonders beneath makeup.
My review: It does what it says ~ my pores were less noticeable after applying.  I love that it is lightly tinted, so I could see using it on days when I'm not doing my makeup.  But, for every day use under foundation, I'll be sticking with my Smashbox primer.

4) Jouer - Moisturizing Lip Gloss in Birchbox Pink
What it says: We teamed up with one of our favorite brands to create this custom fuschia shade.  Apply one coat for semi-sheer pigment or build it for a hot pink pout.
My review: LOVE!  This color is gorgeous (you know I'm a sucker for a hot pink lip) and the formula was not overly sticky, like some glosses I own.

5) Orofluido - Beauty Elixir
What it says: We don't know what we love more - this hair treatment's trio of nourishing essential oils (argan, linseed, cyperus) - or its intoxicating vanilla amber scent.
My review: I DIE. This stuff smells so good I want to pour it on my waffles & eat it...or marinade in it.  And just a drop of it made my hair soft & shiny!  I'm officially obsessed ~ will definitely be ordering the full-size tube.

6) PREP ShowStoppers - Designer Fashion Tape
What it says: Celeb stylists swear by these double-sided tape strips, which will ensure that your party dress stays perfectly in place.
My review: Being a mom of 2, I don't normally wear clothing so revealing that it requires double-stick tape.  But, I'll save it in my dresser for when I get my invitation to the Grammy's. J


Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Sparkle Bright

For this month's Everybody Everywear challenge, it is all about sequins & sparkle.  As you know, I am a huge fan of this trend (as seen here, here and here).  I almost paired this skirt with a chambray shirt & blazer...but at the last minute, I decided something in a vivid hue & cozy knit was more festive.

What I'm wearing:
J. Crew sweater (on sale here) & skirt (on sale here), Mossimo heels (here), Target earrings, Bracelets: J. Crew (here), Banana Republic & Vintage, Lips: Maybelline Fifth Ave Fuschia

You can see the other looks my fellow bloggers put together here:
Sequins + Sparkles | Everybody, Everywhere