Wednesday, October 31, 2007


A few months ago I got my hair done and was not happy at all. I'd been getting progressively unhappier with my stylist and this was the last straw. So after months of waiting, I finally made an appointment with a brand new salon and went tonight.

I went in there feeling like I was a big 'ole mess and looking like this:

To coming out feeling as fresh and pretty as this:

Source: Chance Encounter from Belle & Boo, Etsy

I feel like I can finally take a deep breath and relax.


Thanks to my new salon for taking extra time and providing great care and service!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Ensemble du Jour

Sooooo, I'm back to work after for lovely days away and it seems that the cooler weather has crept in while we were away. Luckily we had shuttered up the chicken coop so they didn't get too chilled, and we're cranking up the vintage radiators to take off the chill in our house. Sadly, most of the heat escapes through the 100 year old gaps in the walls. We need some serious weather-proofing.

The Outfit
First day back to work and I have to go to an 8:30am meeting and I was cold! I'm wearing black ribbed tights, a black pencil skirt, a warm wool v-neck JCrew sweater in the perfect green and I actually pulled out my coat and gloves! Everything, including the mary janes but not the sweater is from Target.

The Focal Point
My warm snuggly coat. This was a great buy, I think. It's Mizrahi for Target but the collar and cuffs make it look fancy and the colors are good. The coat has a great texture and is lined with a satin-y material. It also is a great length for me, hitting just at my knees. I think this coat was billed as 3/4-length sleeves, but they hit my wrists.

I also, love that the collar blocks out most of the wind so I don't need to wear a scarf.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Store Focus: Tops for Shoes

This past weekend I visited Asheville. This is the second time I had been there and it was a really great trip. During our previous trip it was June and pretty warm, even for the mountains but this was a perfect Fall weekend. We drove through tons of rain, but as we passed into Asheville, the sky was clear and the sun was shining.

It was a great change from home and I was finally able to wear some of my new sweaters, although, not many heels. We just do so much walking around that it really isn't feasible. Plus, Asheville is a very laid-back, somewhat hippy-ish town. Earth Shoes, Birkenstocks or Clarks are more common than Manolos or Louboutins. If they are wearing shoes at all.

But there is one very notable and large shoe store - Tops for Shoes.

This shoe store takes up an entire block and the inside is a maze of different rooms and, when I went, was filled with customers. As you can see from their site, their product line is more focused on the comfort end of the shoe scale, so it really wasn't for me, but they do carry some of the more fun designers like Marc Jacobs and Poetic License. And they ship in the US.

If you are in Asheville and have some time, I would recommend checking them out. One thing to note, they don't carry much at all below a size 6, so if you wear a smaller size like me, don't get too hopeful.

Friday, October 26, 2007

So Frickin' Cool

That's me, baby!

Click the image and see why!


Thursday, October 25, 2007

How To: Caring for Exotic Accessories

Because of the texture trend for fall incorporating exotic materials, I thought I would pass along this useful How To on caring for your exotic materials. Partial credit goes to Neiman Marcus for providing information. Thanks for the customer service!


Per Kiss Curl at Etsy and eBay, you should use a soft baby brush or natural bristle paintbrush to comb your feathers back into place and remove any dust. Brush in the direction of the feather grain. Feathers are very fragile so do not get them wet if at all possible.

Alligator, Crocodile or Lizard:

If your accessory is of crocodilian genus (like my vintage lizard bag) you need to treat it with high-end leather conditioner more often than you would regular leather. But before you use conditioner all over, make sure to test a small drop on a hidden spot. To remove excess dirt, wipe with a soft, damp cloth.


On ostrich (like this Bottega Veneta hobo), don’t use any chemicals or conditioners. Simply sprinkle oily spots with talcum powder and wipe with a soft, dry cloth.


Like human skin, snakeskin will age more quickly if exposed to sunlight, so take special care to keep your serpentine accessories (like these Michael Kors Cairo pumps) out of the sun. While the scales will naturally lift over time, you should never apply any product; simply wipe with a lint-free cloth in the direction of the scales.

Exotic materials, whether new or vintage, are an investment and, like any purchase, require care and attention. They can be more delicate, but therein lies their unique beauty. Take care of them and they will make you look good for a long long time.

Packing! Packing! Packing, Packing Packing!

We're going on a road trip and we don't know what's in store...
We're packing up all our stuff and we're heading out the door!

Photo credit: thenorwegianmafia - Flickr

We're going on a weekend trip to Asheville, NC. It should be perfect leaf-peeping time! I hope there is lots of Fall color and that it doesn't rain and that it is cool there compared to the muggy warmth we've been having. I may actually get to wear my sweaters finally! Now I just have to find them.

We're going to have a relaxing weekend visiting Biltmore, walking around downtown and checking out some of the restaurants, pubs and stores.

Photo credit: Biltmore Estate

The biggest challenge is getting everything packed. I'm actually a great, and light, packer... if I'm going on a plane. I actually went on a week business trip, in NYC, with just a small pilot case. The problem comes when we are driving because I feel I have to take advantage of all of the space to bring along any and everything I could possibly need or want.

Of course we need the GPS. Mainly because the husband has no sense of direction and I fall asleep the minute we get in the car. Truly a dangerous combination. Without this, we could be in Maine before I wake up.

And since we're in the car, we have room to bring our own pillows so we can sleep comfy. I don't care where you go, you are never going to find a pillow as perfect as your one at home.

I don't think the B&B will be too offended or anything.

Now luggage.

I'm a sucker for luggage. We are two people and we don't take that many trips each year. Yet, no lie, I have one giant suitcase, one Samsonite suitcase, 3 pilot cases (that can be checked), a vintage round 60's Samsonite case, 2 smaller retro-looking cases, and 3 duffel bags (one blue, one Target Mizrahi, and one Target Libertine). I also have this Dooney pilot case which absolutely can not be checked (I have the pink heart version, actually) and...

I also have this Mizrahi pilot case, which I love, even though it is kind of a weird shape. Sadly, about 50% of my luggage is pink and therefore the husband will not touch it. And it's so pretty I can't trust checking it on a plane, so I only get to use it on car trips.

Seriously, I have a problem. I know.

Must. Have. iPod.

I resisted for a long time. Now I'm obsessed. This is also part of what a crummy driving companion I am. I'll put on my headphones and fall asleep, leaving the hubby to drive. But it has movies on it too. And, since I can't read in the car without getting sick, this is my only entertainment besides sleep.

Another travel must, my kimono robe from Epcot. It goes to the floor but folds up very very thin. Perfect for hotel/B&B modesty.

Now the hard part, what clothes and shoes!!! Ugh!!! I can't decide and that is where I am going to get in to trouble. I'll bring twice as much as I will wear, which means we have to carry a bunch of stuff into and out of the car and into the B&B. And it will probably be raining. So that sucks.

What I'm thinking, though, is some variation on this:

Packing List - in progress:

  • Toiletries - shampoo, conditioner, make-up, face soap, mousse, Proactive, face and body lotion, cotton balls, anti-perspirant, vitamins
  • Robe, night shirt and pants, socks to wear instead of slippers, undergarments
  • Comb and brush, toothbrush and toothpaste, hair band
  • Laptop, phone and Blackberry chargers, cords
  • Umbrella and Rain boots
  • Pashmina (faux)
  • Fun socks and tights
  • Jeans
  • Jeans jacket
  • Magazines and book
  • Feather fascinators and gloves
  • Hat and sunglasses
  • Grey shirt dress and vintage green heels
  • Red Converse
  • Tweed flats
  • Grey Kimono Sweater
  • Grey Owl v-neck from Etsy
  • Sweater dress
  • Pink satin JCrew heels
  • Red v-neck from the Gap
  • Argyle sweater from Target

Wait, how long are we going for again? Does this seem like I'm packing too much?

But there's still room in the car!!!!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


I know these are kind of silly, but I got a pair of these Flirts in lavender and I think they are awfully cute.

Now I just need to decide what to wear them with.

Ensemble du Jour

The Outfit
It's warm today. Again. I'm so depressed. I'm never going to get to do the seasonal clothes rotation! I have a meeting tonight for my town, so even though I don't need to be dressy for work, I still dressed a little nicely.

Actually, this is more comfortable to me that jeans or something. The skirt is very flow-y, the tights are so soft and my new Ann Taylor top (on sale) is very soft too.

I've been dying to break out more of the colored tights that I bought in anticipation of Fall, and I just got these shoes back from the shoe repair (after leaving them there for 4 months!) so today I combined dark orange with these burgundy Aerosoles. Fun, no? I've already received compliments... from guys! And what do they typically notice, nothing, right?

I love these Aerosoles. I have them in black too. They are a few years old and are a really go-to pair of shoes, especially for work. They have a great heel shape too. I have a pair of silver alligator printed Celine heels that I felt these were imitating, because they were offered in black patent too. So I got the expensive crazier ones and the more neutral styles came from Aerosoles.

The Focal Point
I've been very color-driven lately, so why should today be any different? I wanted to pull through that orange and red into more of the outfit, besides my red hair, so I wore a fun beaded ring that has a a mix of crystals in reds, pinks, golds, greens and purples. The big piece is my large felt flower from Etsy. It's about 5" wide and the color is a very rust reddish orange with tinges of pink.

Etsy is my new home for cute stuff! I just bought some great acrylic cuffs with pearls and a crocheted top hat. How fun is that?

Ensemble du Jour

The Outfit
It was really foggy yesterday so I felt like blending into the mists. Unfortunately, it was also warm. So maybe it was just muggy steam. Whatever. So I needed to wear something cool enough to be comfortable. I can't find any pics of what I was wearing to show you the real outfit, but it was something like these:

I wore a patterned skirt and a long-sleeve square-neck silvery blue-grey top I just got on sale at Ann Taylor and the skirt is from Target. The pattern on the skirt looks like this:

So greys, whites, and camel colors. I really wanted to wear a bright shoe with this (you'll see why in a minute) but actually didn't have the color I was wanting, so I went more matchy with these Nine West Chitty heels in mouse-grew suede. You can still get these on Zappos and they come in a bunch of colors.

The Focal Point
A horrible picture I know. For some reason I wanted to wear this really bright orangey-red patterned vintage handkerchief pinned to me, so I did. I used a light blue vintage pin to hold it on.

The pattern on the handkerchief is all these drawings of different fairytale princesses and is cute, but I'm not sure how well this went over. Maybe I should have tied it around my wrist as a bracelet instead. It was quite a pop when worn with the rest of the outfit.

Maybe a little too eye-catching.

I need to give myself time to plan my outfits better. I'd do it at night but I may feel like wearing something different when wake up, and then there is the weather to contend with!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


Okay, is it just me or do these suede Jimmy Choo slingbacks read as cheap disco shoes, or bad Nine West shoes at best? I think it's the tacky gold snakeskin platform.

Jimmy Choo's were my designer footwear of choice for a long time. Longer than Manolo or Louboutin, but lately I've been unimpressed. Their styles have seemed less classy modern and more cheap Las Vegas.

What happened???

Imitation = Flattery?

Okay, now I'm really ticked off!

My love for Miu Miu's shoes this Fall has been well documented (here, here, and here). Look at the inspired and elegant design and colors of the Miu Miu shoes. The colors are balanced and the material is of a quality that keeps a design that could be "busy" or too masculine looking classy and feminine.

Even the more exuberant color combinations and styles look quirky and fun.

And these shoes are like no other ones out there for Fall. There was a lot of menswear styles being put out, but these were unmistakable. And I fell for them hard.

Now Steve Madden, the notorious design thief (past offenses here and here), has finally crossed my line with "his" new Spec heels!


They look cheap and plastic and, while some of his color combinations are okay, most of them are TACKY!

These are not all of the color combinations available, there are more on the site. But I think these last two are the worst! The actually offend me!

Can we say "clown shoes"?


Can somebody please sue this company already? I like nice styles that are affordable but I don't like blatant theft of intellectual property.

Ensemble du Jour

The Outfit
I am not a huge dress wearer and I'm trying to change that. I just feel that I have to be selective because I just don't think they flatter me (even though I wear tops and skirts almost everyday, go figure). When I saw a picture of a new Isaac Mizrahi dress in an ad for Target, I was so smitten with the colors that I was determined to give it a try.

The dress is a grey wool/flannel shirt dress with long sleeves and a tie belt that you tie into a bow. But what makes it special and a must-have is the "hidden" contrasting green herringbone trim that is found on the inside of the button placket, under the collar and inside the cuffs and on the reverse of the belt.

So at first you think it is mono-chromatic but then you get these flashes of really bright green.

At first I was actually challenged with what shoes I was going to wear with this dress to not be too matchy but play off the green. I debated black, silver, orange, etc. But then I remembered my vintage La Rose green heels! The retro style heel plays off perfectly with the style of the dress. I feel very 1960's career gal - sassy and sexy!

The color is a dark, almost olive green thin suede with metallic olive green leather scalloped around the edges and a brighter green metallic heel.

Don't you love that heel shape! I wish more designers would pull that back into rotation. It's not that high but it is smokin' hot!

The Focal Point
I rolled back the cuff so you couldn't miss the green and kept my jewelry to small pieces in gold, which, because of the yellow tones in the green, went well with the grey. I wore peridot studs and my gold heart locket.

I think this is the outfit I have received the most compliments on and it was actually comfortable. So more dresses will be in my future.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Designer Focus - Le Silla

As I look through more and more blogs, websites and publications, it is easy to get overwhelmed with the gorgeous product to be found. And with more and more young designers making it to the marketplace and more websites and stores carrying their lines, I'm branching out from the core of Louboutin, Choo and Blahnik.

I really admire these newer designers and am inspired by their designs and unique aesthetics.

The newest designer I'm totally smitten with is Le Silla. The source of inspiration for Enio Silla, who has always been the Le Silla designer, is to materialize the idea of seduction, to make the image of a woman real and full of femininity. I'm sure that he has pulled from the Louboutin vision as well, but while Louboutins are overtly sexy, I find Le Sillas to have a quieter elegant sex appeal (some of them) with forays into Guiseppe Zanotti/Prada-esque styling.

Their site isn't the easiest to navigate, so be warned. I preferred looking at what was available on the Saks site. This is where I first saw them and fell in love.

The tuxedo styling on these could bring a sexy girliness to a formal pants outfit, class up a pair of jeans or be really different with a suit. What a great shape they have.

These satin d'Orsays are the perfect elegant formal shoe but I would wear these all the time because I find them so feminine and pretty. The fullness of the bow is my favorite part.

Aren't these a pretty take on the mary jane style? I love the stitched pattern on matte satin with the oversized button to give it a fresh modern look.

These are my absolute favorites - their "Stardust Heels". On the site they are described as: Slender bone heels support rich metallic suede. I'm pining for these.

I want all of these shoes! They are officially a new favorite designer. Now I just need to get some!

Le Sigh...

Here's an elegant heel that could be worn year round. I love the warm brown stone color done in tonal suede and metallic leather, the modern Art Deco curves of the design and the shape of the heel.

The round toe and small platform will help make this an easier wearing heel. And the designer signature is kept to a subtle "D" charm. This would be great with floaty dresses or paired with dark brown ribbed tights.

Dior Deco Heel - $650 - Bergdorf Goodman

Friday, October 19, 2007

Movie Night Ensemble

When we lived in Florida we used to do a lot more "social" things. We would go to more plays and clubs, etc., but since we've moved, we've been too busy. Also, there is not as much to do in our smaller area, which we are still getting used to. Not that we mind, but we like to go out with friends as much as we can.

So you have to make your own fun.

This year we started doing a "Movie Night" once a month. But not your everyday come-on-over-put-in-a-DVD-and-we'll-pop-some-popcorn Movie Night. We're talking MOVIE NIGHT -

We have a pretty big backyard and we put up a 12-foot screen and play movies for as many people that want to come on over. It's totally awesome!

What I love about it is that we have a ton of friends over, it's really casual and easy to prep for, plus I don't have to clean the house. I don't get to get dressed up but I do think about what I'm wearing.

I wear, my jeans, a graphic tee from Old Navy, yard shoes (sneakers or boots), a scarf (since it's chilly now), blankies and, if we have the time, accessories with a bonfire and s'mores!

This movie night I'm wearing my No Hunting tee from Old Navy. A little political announcement before the festivities.