Tuesday, March 31, 2015

The New Neutrals


One of the biggest beauty trends seen across runways this year was minimal, barely-there makeup.  Designers like Marc Jacobs, Chanel & Chloé all debuted fresh-faced models in a simple neutral palette.  Unlike flashy bright blue eyeshadow (a trend that reminds me far too much of the 80's), this pared-down routine is one I can definitely get on board with.  The idea here is not to actually go out with a bare face, but to use makeup only where you need it & stick to warm flesh-tones & pinkish nudes so the result is a natural look that simply accentuates your features.  My recommendation is to skip your full-coverage foundation in lieu of a tinted moisturizer or CC cream (which I prefer as we head into the warmer months).  You can also try switching out your black mascara for a soft brown shade instead.  And don't forget the highlighter!  This is a crucial step to create that lit-from-within glow (see my tips for applying it here).  Here are my top beauty product picks from Nordstrom for achieving this pretty & natural look:






Thank you to ShopStyle for kindly sponsoring this post.
All opinions are 100% honest & completely my own.

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Monday, March 30, 2015

Long Lines




I couldn't be happier that wide-leg pants & flared jeans are so popular again this year - the classic silhouette is flattering on any body type because it creates a fluid line from waist to toe that makes your legs look a mile long!  As with any garment, fit makes all the difference - being over 5'8", I typically will have the hem let out a bit so I can wear mine with heels.  And if you're petite, you might need adjustments made as well.  I recommend opting for a lightweight draped fabric or linen blend for spring/summer so you can dress them up or down.  If you haven't found your perfect pair yet, I've included lots of affordable options below!



What I'm wearing:
Mango top, Mango pants (similar here, here or here), BCBGeneration pumps, J. Crew clutch
c/o LoveStylize cuff (similar), Forever 21 earrings (similar here or here), Nails: CoverGirl Coral Silk

SHOP WIDE LEG TROUSERS

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Friday, March 27, 2015

Weekly Top Ten

I've always been a big fan of Mango, but this year in particular, their pieces are especially irresistible.  I love that they carry a good mix of classic & modern styles at reasonable price points.  They're currently running a mid-season sale with select items marked down & you can also shop their online outlet store (such amazing deals!).  They also offer a plus size line with many similar pieces + shipping on all orders over $50 is free.  I find that this brand runs fairly true to size - however, it an item appears to be a boxy or loose fit, I will order a size down.  Here are my current top picks from their site (everything under $80, with some under $30):



1) Crochet Top // 2) Crystal Fringe Earrings (matching necklace here) // 3) Raffia Clutch
4) Gladiator Lace-Up Sandals (also in white) // 5) Slit-Hem Maxi Skirt (also in taupe)
6) Pebbled Tote (also in black) // 7) Denim Chambray Shirt // 8) Striped Pattern Skirt
9) Striped Cotton Scarf // 10) Textured Jacket

MORE MANGO FAVORITES:

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Thursday, March 26, 2015

Relaxed Eyelet


Even though my shopping freeze is over, I've been reverting back to some of my old practices...like putting together outfits once a week using pieces that are over a year old.  I've discussed it here before, but I can't say enough about the endless versatility of a cargo jacket or vest.  This is the time of year when I tend to wear mine constantly because they are such a great lightweight layering piece & they instantly give any pairing a laid-back cool vibe.  






What I'm wearing:
Madewell jacket (see options below), Old Navy eyelet shirt (similar long-sleevedshort-sleeved or sleeveless), 
Gap skirt (similar under $25 or under $45), ShoeMint heels (similar here or here), J. Crew clutch
J. Crew bracelets (similar here & here), Lips: Revlon Ultra HD (Tulip)

CARGO JACKETS & VESTS

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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

20 Under $20

You know that feeling you get when you put on an old jacket, slip your hands into the pockets and magically find money you didn't know you had?  That's basically how I feel every month when I'm putting these posts together. Though it takes hours of searching to find the best deals, there is something so exhilarating about tracking them down & getting to share them with you.  And the only thing better than finding a bargain is finding something that looks much more expensive than what you paid for it.  All of these fit into that category & are just $20 or less!


CHEERY BRIGHTS
5) LuLu*s Salmon Pink Heels (also in nude) // 6) Merona Zip Wallet // 7) H&M Sweater (also in blush & navy)

COOL NEUTRALS
11) H&M Short-Sleeve Blouse (also in coral)// 12) Forever 21 Metallic Sandals (also in rose gold)

MORE UNDER $20:

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Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Back to Basics


Whenever I'm feeling uninspired with my wardrobe & not quite sure what to wear, I always revert to classic casual pieces that are easy & I know will look good.  Though there's nothing groundbreaking about this combination, it's a comfortable pairing & what I typically reach for on days when I don't have a lot of time.  And, to be honest, sometimes the simplest outfits are my most favorite.  Styling tip: this look could be dressed down even further by swapping out the mules for sneakers.






What I'm wearing:
Worthington blazer (similar), c/o Old Navy top (similar here or here), Maison Jules pants (on sale!), 
c/o JustFab Lynne mules, Madewell bag (similar here, here or here), Sole Society ring
Bracelets: Madewell (similar) & Vintage (similar), Ray-Ban wayfarers, Nails: Essie Chubby Cheeks

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Monday, March 23, 2015

One For One

When I was pregnant with my daughter, in my third trimester, I developed preeclampsia (a serious condition that put my health at risk).  Though we attempted bed rest for a period of time, my symptoms became so severe that I had to be induced 3 weeks early.  During the course of labor, my daughter's heart rate dropped dangerously low.  I remember the doctors & nurses rushing into our room and telling me that I would have to be prepped for an emergency C-section.  I cannot explain the fear that began coursing through my body when I heard those words. Looking back on it now, I am so grateful for the wisdom & quick action of our medical staff that day.  As it turned out, my daughter had the umbilical cord wrapped tightly around her neck - if they had not intervened & if we had continued with the regular birthing process, she may not have survived.  

Today I've partnered with TOMS to share my story to help raise awareness for a need that is so prevalent in countless countries.  Did you know that 40 million women across the world give birth each year without the help of a skilled birth attendant? Babies are lost every day due to complications in pregnancy & childbirth, simply because these mothers don't have access to medical care.  Because of the experience I went through & how my daughter's life was saved, this is a cause that's close to my heart.  

With the training & proper materials to provide a safe delivery, mothers are 80% less likely to develop an infection & almost half of newborn deaths can be prevented.  In their effort to make a difference, TOMS has launched a line of handbags to support their One For One Campaign.  For every bag that is purchased, TOMS will help administer a safe birth for a mother & baby in need.  I personally love supporting organizations & brands that are committed to contributing to worthy causes like this one.  So, I'm sharing my favorites from their new line of handbags today - these are all under $100, perfect for summer + shipping is free!  Nothing feels better than giving back, especially when you know that your purchase can positively impact another woman's life.

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Friday, March 20, 2015

Weekend Fringe


This was a pretty rough past few days for me (I'll be sharing in detail soon), so I couldn't be more relieved that this week is finally over.  My parents are coming to visit from Oregon in just a few days, so we are excitedly preparing the house & planning the menu for their stay with us.  I wore this outfit earlier in the week (on an unexpectedly mild day) - the combination of textured fringe & denim is my idea of polished casual & the perfect pairing for happy hour with friends.  I hope it's sunny & warm where you are and that everyone has a wonderful, relaxing weekend!























What I'm wearing:
Mango jacket (similar here or here), LOFT top (similar here, here or here), H&M skirt, ShoeMint mules
Forever 21 clutch (similar here or here), Zara bracelets (similar here and here), Forever 21 necklace
Nails: Essie Chubby Cheeks, Lips: Revlon Smoked Peach + Revlon Super Natural

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Thursday, March 19, 2015

Denim Days

In my opinion, shopping for the perfect pair of denim is almost as frustrating as finding flattering swimwear.  I just began pulling all my spring clothing out of storage and was reminded that my favorite white skinny jeans were ruined in the wash last year by my well-meaning husband.  In addition to that, I have been on the hunt for slightly distressed light-wash boyfriend jeans for what seems like forever.  Because I don't often have the luxury of spending hours at the mall, wandering from store to store & trying on jeans, I love the convenience of shopping online.  Nordstrom makes it so easy because they offer dozens of different brands & styles, plus their shipping is free (as are returns).  I just ordered the white flared style seen here (a popular trend for spring) & I can't wait to try them out.  If you're on the fence about sizing, I recommend reading the reviews below each product or ordering two sizes to be sure you get one that fits.  If you've found your perfect pair, please share in the comments below - I'd love to hear suggestions!







Thank you to ShopStyle for kindly sponsoring this post.  
All opinions are 100% honest & completely my own.

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Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Spring Culottes


I'm a big believer in only embracing trends that fit within your personal style & flatter your body shape.  I was actually an early adopter of culottes (see my post from last summer here), so I was happy to see them all over the runways this year - clearly, they are here to stay.  Think about styling them in the same way as you would a midi skirt (this also helps when determining the best length for your frame).  You want a tailored fit in the waist & hips with no sagging or puckering, which may mean having alterations made if they aren't perfect right off the rack.  You can either choose a fitted, structured top to balance out the voluminous shape on bottom or you can keep it relaxed with slouchy soft styles, as I did here.  While I typically prefer to wear heels with culottes to help elongate the legs, they take on a laid-back cool vibe when paired with chic slide sandals.










What I'm wearing:
H&M blazer (similar here or here), LOFT shirt (similar), H&M scarf (similar), 
Forever 21 culottes (similar under $25under $35, under $65 or under $80), BCBGeneration pumps
Zara bag (similar here or here), Rings: c/o ShopLately & H&M (similar), c/o ShopLately earrings & ear cuff

MORE STYLING IDEAS

Images: 1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6

SHOP THE TREND:

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Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Steals Under $30

Spring is the season when I tend to wear more dresses & skirts than any other time of the year - something about the flowers beginning to bloom and the sudden warmth in the air gets me craving soft & flirty pieces.  So, for this month's edition of SUT, I decided to create four feminine looks that are ideal for both this season & the next.  Each piece you see here is just $30 or less (and I've included even more affordable styles in the scrolling bar below)!



MORE UNDER $30:

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Monday, March 16, 2015

Double Layer


It's no secret that I love layering - it's a skill that I had no choice but to master when we moved from NC to NY, though I admit that it took me a while to figure out the best ways to pile on pieces without adding unnecessary bulk to my frame.  One of the keys is to choose lightweight items with a bit of structure like a sleeveless trench or long vest.  This has quickly become a staple in my closet because you can layer it on top of sweaters, blazers or blouses in the fall and wear it on its own with sleeveless tops & dresses in late spring/early summer.







What I'm wearing:
thrifted H&M Trench Vest (last seen here; similar here, here or here), 
Gap blazer (last seen here; similar here, here or here), Joe Fresh t-shirt
Vila jeans (similar here or here), c/o Dorothy Perkins pumps, ASOS clutch (similar here or here), 
c/o ShopLately necklace, Bracelets: LOFT (similar) & Vintage (similar), Nails: Essie Chubby Cheeks

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Saturday, March 14, 2015

Weekly Top Ten

For this weekend's edition, I decided to focus on an online retailer that many of you have asked me about purchasing from.  They have so many brands and sorting through the thousands of items in their inventory can be daunting if you don't have a specific piece you're searching for.  I've had great luck buying from ASOS - I love that they have lots of styles to choose from, that there's free shipping on orders of $40 or more (return shipping is free too) + they offer petite, tall, maternity & plus sizes!  Because the fit can vary greatly from brand to brand, I will sometimes order two sizes & just return the one that doesn't fit.  And if your order exceeds $140, you can get free 2-day shipping using code EXPRESSUSA (for US residents only).  They also run sales fairly regularly, so if you find something you love that's a bit out of your price range, check my Sales Alerts Page that's updated daily so you can get it for less when there's a special discount promo.  Here are my current top picks from their site under $75:


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Friday, March 13, 2015

March Must-Haves


Spring has finally arrived here in NY and I couldn't be happier.  Though it's going to take a while for all the piles of snow to melt completely, we've been having weather that's consistently over 40 degrees (a welcome relief from what was the coldest February in history) - which means that it's the perfect time to stock up on wardrobe essentials for the season.  So today I'm sharing my 6 must-have pieces from Old Navy that are versatile and easy for you to mix & match from now until summer.  And the best part is that everything I'm wearing here is on sale + you can get an extra 20% off regular-priced styles or 30% off sale styles when you order online using code ONSAVE!


This printed jacket is such a great lightweight option for spring because it's slightly cropped & the jacquard texture makes it easy to dress up or down (I'd style it with a white button-down shirt & tailored trousers for the office).  I love the way this coral hue pops against the blue - the longer length of this tee is perfect for layering or wearing on its own (would be so cute tucked into this white skirt).  And what's more comfortable than boyfriend jeans?  I could wear these every single day & I'm not sure I'd miss my other pairs of denim at all.









What I'm wearing:
c/o Old Navy Jacquard-Pattern Bomber (check your local store for inventory - this was available in all sizes at my nearest location), c/o Old Navy Tulip Hem Teec/o Old Navy Boyfriend Straight Jeans (recommend sizing down; I'm wearing a 2), Sole Society Booties (similar here or here), c/o Old Navy Bucket Bag (similar here or here), Similar Necklacec/o ShopLately Earrings

Feminine Top // Soft Pants // Reversible Tote

My personal weekend wear is all about easy separates that can carry me from soccer games to running errands to lunch out with friends.  A flowy top in a pretty spring print is essential for the season and works just as well with casual pieces as it does with a flirty skirt for date night.  At first, I wasn't sure these relaxed pants would work on me, but they have a slimmer cut than other styles I've tried and they are so comfortable that I'm tempted to sleep in them!  I had been eyeing this tote since it first hit stores and I was so thrilled that there were some still available - the buttery soft finish and the fact that it's reversible (to a classic cognac) sold me in a heartbeat.









What I'm wearing:
Tinseltown Denim Couture Jacket (similar here or here), c/o Old Navy Ruffle-Trim Sleeveless Top (also in coral print, black or cobalt), c/o Old Navy Linen-Blend Pants (also in olive & taupe), Similar Sneakers
c/o Old Navy Reversible Tote, J. Crew Factory Sunglasses (similar)

Photos by Olya Myers



This post is brought to you by Old Navy.
All opinions are 100% honest & completely my own.

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