Friday, August 29, 2014

Floral Sport

I have fully embraced the sporty trend, which is why I'm so happy it's sticking around for another season. Not only is it practical (especially for us moms who need to be comfortable while running around with our kids), but it's incredibly comfortable...while still giving off a cool modern vibe.  Anything that checks those boxes for me is a win, win.  So, needless to say, this is what I'll be wearing to enjoy the long weekend.  I'll be taking the day off on Monday to savor these last few moments of summer with my family - hope you all have a relaxing & fun Labor Day!

What I'm wearing:
Tinseltown Denim Couture jacket (similar here or here), c/o Dorothy Perkins top
c/o Old Navy dress (worn as skirt; last seen here), H&M sneakers (similar here, here or here), 
c/o Old Navy bag (this season's style here), Bracelets: Vintage (similar) & Zara (similar), 
J. Crew Factory sunglasses (similar)


Thursday, August 28, 2014

Smokey Eye Tutorial

I'm so excited to be sharing my first makeup tutorial with you today.  Several of you have been asking for more beauty posts, so this is long overdue (thank you for your patience)!  Not only am I showing you how to create a smokey eye with colors that are perfect for fall...but I'm also sharing with you about a new service that will help you save money on the beauty products you already buy!  

As you know, I am a firm believer that there is almost always a way to get what you want for less - whether that means waiting for a sale or sorting through coupons in the mail.  But usually this takes a lot of extra time and effort...which many of us don't have to give.  Enter Pirc - it's a new site that allows you to create a personalized circular of the items you buy frequently, so sales & coupons are delivered straight to your inbox without you having to search for them!  The main goal of Pirc is to make finding weekly sales easier (eliminate the searching) & show you coupons on the items you love.  A busy woman's dream come true!

I've partnered with them today to bring you this simple tutorial & I'm using products that I purchased using coupons from my own "Pircular" - I was able to get $1.00 off this Revlon eyeliner & eyeshadow (which also comes in 14 other gorgeous colors).  Before I learned how to do eye makeup, I was always confused about where to put which shade when purchasing palettes like this one.  I'm hoping to take the guesswork out of creating a smokey eye, so here's a little guide to help you get started - you can use this same formula for any eyeshadow quad:
I typically reserve a smokey eye look for evening since it's a little too intense for daytime.  The great part about this method is that you can use a light hand or build the color up for a dramatic effect.  You could also choose to skip the eyeliner for more subtle definition.  Here's how to recreate this look at home for yourself:

Step 1:  Apply the olive green shadow in even strokes from lash-line to crease.
Step 2:  Apply the dark brown shadow into your crease, blending well.
Step 3:  Apply the coppery bronze shadow into the outer corners of eyes, blending with the other colors.
Step 4:  Apply the highlight shadow to your brow bones and the inner corners of eyes.
Step 5:  Line the top & bottom lash line with a brown pencil - this creates a softer look than black.
Step 6:  Curl lashes & apply two coats of black mascara to top & bottom lashes.  
Be sure to allow the first coat to dry completely before applying the second - this helps avoid clumping.

Products used

This post was brought to you by Pirc.  
Sign up here to create your own "Pircular" & start saving on your favorite products!


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Happy Hour

There's nothing like a night out with girlfriends to lift my spirits.  This doesn't happen nearly as often as I'd like since we're all working & have taken family vacations this summer. But when we do get together, I'm reminded of how grateful I am for the gift of true friendship - I can share with them my triumphs & failures, my struggles with balancing a career & motherhood, plus everything in between...and they support me no matter what.  So today I'm calling them out - Julie, Katie & Christy: thanks for being the kind of women that my daughter can look up to, the kind of moms that I admire & the kind of friends that I can count on.  

What I'm wearing:
Hive & Honey jacket (last seen here; similar here or here), Forever 21 top
Jennifer Lopez shorts (similar here or here), c/o Prima Donna heels
Forever 21 clutch (similar here or here), c/o ShopLately earrings, Sole Society ring
Nails: Wet 'n Wild Through the GrapevineLips: L'Oreal Colour Riche (Blushing Berry)


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Excess Baggage

I've received several emails lately asking about where to find the best handbags that will look luxe without breaking the bank.  When shopping for affordable bags, it's important to pay close attention to the finish (not all faux leathers are created equal) and keep the decorative hardware to a minimum - the more streamlined the design, the more expensive looking the bag will be.  I've compiled some of my favorites in the season's best colors & shapes with prices varying from as little as $20 to $85 (for those who prefer real leather).  Take a look at these gorgeous finds and let me know which one is your favorite!

Satchels:  Neiman Marcus // Forever 21 // Forever 21 // Neiman Marcus
Cross-body's:  Forever 21 // Forever 21 // The Sak // Urban Originals


Monday, August 25, 2014

Old Meets New

I love when I purchase items that seem trendy at the moment and they actually end up becoming closet staples.  This color-blocked jacket is over 2 years old & I've been pleasantly surprised at how much I've been able to wear it with different pieces.  The 3/4-length sleeves and medium-weight fabric make this the ideal topper for our transitional weather, while the cheery floral top is a reminder that it's technically still summer (even if our weather isn't cooperating).  Here are just a few of the ways I've previously styled this jacket: for summer, spring & fall.

What I'm wearing:
The Limited jacket (similar here or here), c/o Dorothy Perkins top, c/o Old Navy jeans
ALDO pumps (similar here or here), The Limited clutch (similar here or here), 
Forever 21 necklace, Olivia Burton watch (similar), Lips: Revlon Just Bitten Kissable (Cherish)


Friday, August 22, 2014

Seasonal Shift

I'm thrilled to partnering once again with DaisyGem to offer an exclusive discount for PPF readers - not only do they make beautiful & affordable jewelry (like the necklace I'm wearing here), but they consistently give back by supporting various non-profit organizations.  When they asked me which cause I wanted to highlight for this collaboration, I couldn't help but choose one that is close to my heart.  In addition to being a spokesperson for them, I am currently working to raise support as I will be participating in their annual walk this October in NYC.  You can use code SLEP15 at checkout to receive 15% off your purchase and DaisyGem will donate 10% of the net proceeds from all orders placed to the SLE Lupus Foundation.  My current favorites from their site include these crystal earrings, this statement necklace & this spike bracelet.

What I'm wearing:
J. Crew Factory sweater (on sale!), JOA skirt c/o DailyLook (also similar here or here), 
Pour La Victoire pumps (similar under $60under $65 or under $80), c/o DaisyGem necklace
Bracelets: c/o BaubleBar & Zara (similar), Nails: Essie Angora Cardi


Thursday, August 21, 2014

Moment of Truth

It finally happened.  That moment that every mother of a little girl fears.  Standing in a fitting room with my 10-year-old daughter, trying on back-to-school clothes, when she looked in the mirror and stated: "I just wish my legs were skinnier."  I took a deep breath & swallowed hard, knowing full well that this was a turning point.  What I said next would burn into her memory and stay with her for years to come.  My heart ached for her - for the arrow that had pierced her heart and made her believe, even for a split second, that she was less than.  I felt angry that society had already affected her at such a young age and made her question something so beautiful & special.  All the while remembering that I was not too much older than her when I started to believe those same lies - which, years later, led to a destructive eating disorder.  I desperately wanted to save her from the pain & agony that I went through.

I paused for what was probably too long and tried to form words that would adequately convey the truth which I longed for her to grasp...that she is fearfully & wonderfully made.  Though she may be taller & bigger than all of her friends, her size has nothing to do with her self-worth.  I took a step back and thought about what I would say to my younger self, if given the chance.  I wanted to discover where this seed had been planted and just how deeply its roots had grown.  So I simply asked, "What makes you say that?".  She responded that her classmates had skinny legs, that they looked better than her in certain clothes and that she wanted that for herself.  

My mission as her mom is to encourage her to accept & love herself as she is, so I said the only thing I could say: You are born to be who you are.  You aren't supposed to look like your best friend or your cousin or your neighbor. You have a beauty that is unique & cannot be duplicated.  The world will tell you that your body & your face are everything and that they alone determine your value.  Don't listen to the world.  Listen to your heart.  You were blessed with a healthy, strong body.  You also have a brilliant, creative mind. Your heart is tender & you're sensitive to the needs of those around you.  You have a natural ability to lead & you do it in a way that makes others want to follow.  You were given the gift of music and you have an artistic eye.  All of these characteristics define who you are - they are what make you special.  No one can take them away from you and no one has the exact same combination of gifts and talents.  Comparing yourself to others will rob you of gratefulness for the many amazing things you are and all the incredible blessings you have been given.  

As we walked out of the store that day, holding hands & smiling, I knew it wouldn't be the last time we'd have this conversation.  In the years to come, she will need to be reminded again that she is beautiful just the way she is.  I know this because even I need reminding from time to time.  And when those moments come, I will pray for wisdom to have the right words to say so she will believe what is real over the lies that threaten to steal her joy. But, for now, I will cherish watching her run, play, sing & dance - carefree, confident and blissfully unaware of how radiant she truly is.


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Double-Duty Denim

It's hard to believe that it's almost September (how did that happen?!) and that fall weather is just around the corner.  I'm already in the thick of back-to-school shopping for my kids and, let's be honest, I'm picking up a few things for myself too.  Because my size has changed a bit from last year, I am stocking up on essentials and new jeans are high on my priority list. 

I have fallen in love with the new fits & washes at Old Navy ~ the skinny boyfriend has just the right amount of slouch without being overwhelmingly baggy and this mid-rise pair is one of the most flattering styles I've ever worn.  Both are endlessly versatile & destined to become closet staples in heavy rotation for the coming season.  I've styled them here with polished basics that will help take the weekend wardrobe up a notch - perfect for a day of shopping, browsing the local farmer's market or enjoying a casual brunch with friends.

What I'm wearing:
Forever 21 chambray shirt (similar under $25under $30 or under $40), 
c/o Old Navy MidRise RockStar Jeans (I'm wearing a 6 regular), Kendall & Kylie Madden Girl flats, Madewell belt (similar here or here), Zara tote (similar here or here), c/o ShopLately earrings
Bracelets: J. CrewForever 21 & Madewell (similar), Rings: Etsy Ring & Vintage (similar), 
J. Crew Factory sunglasses (similar), Lips: L'Oreal Colour Riche (Volcanic)

What I'm wearing:
Oasis jacket (or similar here), c/o Old Navy tank (I'm wearing an XS), 
c/o Old Navy Skinny Boyfriend Jeans (I'm wearing a 0 regular), 
c/o Sole Society booties (similar under $45 or under $80), 
c/o Old Navy bag, Bracelets: H&M (similar), Vintage (similar) & Forever 21
Vintage necklace (similar), Ray-Ban wayfarers
Nails: China Glaze Life Preserver
This post was sponsored by Old Navy
Check out Old Navy‘s latest fashion lineup in store or online at


Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Steals Under $30

The closer we get to autumn, the more I find myself craving easy-to-wear basics in calming neutrals.  As much as I love a pop of color, there is something sophisticated and chic about a simple palette accented with metallic shine.  Here are my current favorites all for $30 or less to get you ready for the transition into fall.



Monday, August 18, 2014

Cozy Up

Normally, the summer heat lasts well into September here in NY - but the cool down I mentioned last week has been sticking around much longer than expected.  Which prompted me to not only pull my fall clothes out of storage, but also gave me the chance to wear a few recently purchased pieces that I had intended on saving for later in the season.  This mix of soft silk, cozy wool & supple (faux) leather felt just right for our chilly weekend weather.

What I'm wearing:
H&M cardigan, Joe Fresh shirt (similar here or here), Mango shorts, c/o AE booties
Modcloth bag (similar here or here), c/o BaubleBar earrings, c/o InPink ring, Michael Kors watch (similar), 
Lips: Revlon Colorburst Cherish


Friday, August 15, 2014

Classic Chic

You simply can't go wrong with a sophisticated mix of timeless pieces in a neutral color palette.  Even though we aren't experiencing fall weather here yet, I've been focusing on items that will transition nicely into the cooler weather.  I plan on layering this blouse under a crewneck sweater to pair with a wool skirt + booties.  And these loafers, that are over a year old & finally broken-in, will be the ideal complement to cropped trousers for a modern menswear look.

What I'm wearing:
Mango blouse c/o JCPenney, Zara shorts (similar here or here), 
Pink & Pepper loafers (similar here or here), Zara bag (similar here or here), 
c/o ShopLately cuffc/o InPink ring, c/o ShopLately earrings