A Hint of Spring

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Even when it's single-digit temperatures outside I still want to wear bright colors. This was my attempt at bringing my spring clothes into winter. 

The most useful tool in doing this is a Chambray shirt; this one has ever-so-tiny polka-dots on it and makes a fantastic layering piece.

 Dress: Calvin Klein
Tights: DKNY
Shoes: Nine West Outlet
Polka-dot Chambray: J Crew Factory
Necklace: Forever 21
Bracelet: J Crew (worn @ my wedding)
Earrings: Kate Spade via Ebay
Watch: Michael Kors

Green and Snow!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

We finally got a little snow here in Chicago! When I got to my car I was reminded why you never wear  short booties if you plan on wiping the snow off your car because they act like a little cups for the snow to fall right into. Luckily they zipper right off and can be shaken out!

I got this green blouse at Zara a few days ago as part of their sale that is going on now. Check it out here if you would like to see the whole thing. It's the same material as this other Zara blouse that I have and love, so I also bought this top in black too. A girl can never have enough perfectly drapey black blouses.

And since I'm dressed in almost all Zara, what better day to share this artice from the New York Times my husband found that makes me love and appreciate Zara on a whole different level. It also made me realize that if I like something I see there I should purchase it and return it later if I change my mind. Because of how they stock their items it may not be there later or ever again! Interesting read and worth your time.

Blouse: Zara (buy here)
Jeans: Zara
Infinity scarf: dkjones on Etsy
Toggle Coat: Andrew Marc (old from Nordstrom Rack)

Peplum and Stripes/Exciting New Collaboration

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

I had pretty much been dying to wear this outfit for a few weeks now. I got the idea from seeing a picture of a pink peplum skirt with a pink and orange striped top (on Sole Society), but since I didn't have either of those I recreated it in blue and green tones.

On that note let me take a minute to talk about some exciting news from SoleSociety.com. Their site is probably one of my favorite and most frequently visited sources for outfit inspiration. I know they are are a shoe company, but I really like how they show you two models head-to-toe in two very different but highly recreateable stylish outfits. A lot of times I even notice they are wearing pieces I already own from J Crew, StyleMint or Nordstrom. I find myself frequently taking screen shots to remember the looks I want to try. 

And to my surprise, I received an email last week telling me that Sole Society shoes will now be available at Nordstrom! That's just about as exciting as a Target/designer collaboration. All shoes are under 100 bucks a pop, very well made and on trend! With Nordstrom's customer service and free shipping and Sole Society's trendy and affordable shoes, you just can't beat that!

This is night two in a row of the hair coming out! I know I shouldn't keep talking about it but I'm just so amazed at how easy it is and how perfectly it matches!

 I found these clip-on earrings in the clearance section for $3 at Forever, now they look like Carrie's wedding Manolos!

Striped top: StyleMint (old)
Skirt: H&M circa 2009!
Clip on Earrings (worn on shoes): Forever 21 clearance

Resolutions Ball @ the Sofitel

Monday, January 28, 2013

This past Friday, my girls and I attended another Style Chicago event at the Sofitel's grand ballroom. We had a great time getting pampered with free manis and eyebrow threading and enjoyed yummy cocktails, sushi and monster goodie bags!! 

And if you are wondering how my hair grew 7 inches overnight I will tell you. It didn't! It's my first night out giving clip-in extensions a shot. Yes I'm telling my secret and I don't really care. I have always wondering what I would look like with long hair since mine just reaches a point a few inches past my shoulders where it just gives up. And then I saw this video on the blog Running on Happiness and knew I had to give it a try. She was right, they are addictive. I don't plan to wear it to work or anything, but when I have a weekend like this packed with outings, it's just another fun accessory to play with. 

What do you think of the hair? Freaked out or impressed? If you have any questions about the process or brand I used, let me know. I'd be happy to share.

 Heels: Zara (Worn here and here)
"Leather" Pants: ASOS (buy here for $29)
Window Pane Blouse: Forever 21(similar)
Sparkly necklace, earrings and bracelet: Forever 21

 This is a howling picture of my yoga girls and I who lovingly refer to ourselves as the "Yoga Lobas"

Layered Neutrals

Friday, January 25, 2013

There is something just so glamorous about silk pants. 

I don't wear them often, but on this particular day I thought they seemed a comfortable choice (since they have an elastic waistband) to go with this rather neutral mix.

I'm also really loving this infinity scarf! It may sound weird, but this one has a lot of spring to it, and it stays up tight close to my face which has been much appreciated with the below-freezing temperatures we have had in Chicago lately.

My seemingly endless search to find the perfect year-round nude almond-toe wedge has finally come to an end with this super-affordable pair from Express. I know, I'm shocked too!


Infinity Cowl: dkjones on Etsy
Black and white collared blouse: Forever 21
Sweater: J. Crew Factory Outlet
Silk pants: H&M
Wedges: Express
Earrings: Forever 21
Tech Gloves: Nordstrom

They Bloomed! How to Clean Your Hunter Boots

Thursday, January 24, 2013

I had always noticed that my Hunter boots had a bit of a white-ish film on them. Strangely, I kind of liked it there. 

I like the character that something old and weathered has, like my great grandfather's ring I wear on my right hand that I never want cleaned. Like, it earned the dirt it acquired over time. And since I've had these boots for about 7 years now, I enjoyed knowing I was kinda ahead of the trend and actually using them functionally for commuting via public transit in nasty Chicago weather. 

But lately, my boots had just been looking plain sad. After wearing them in a recent postAmy commented that they looked green. The reason for that was the white film had now turned yellow on my navy boots and well, yellow and blue = green. Gross!

I found out that character-laden film means they "bloomed," which is an adorable term for something kind of ugly.

I did a little research and ordered this hunter boot cleaner online from Shoes.com and gave it a shot. I've also read that Armor All works but I haven't tried that... yet. 

Here's the step-by-step, with pictures:

The tiny little spray bottle

The sad condition my Huters started in

I tossed them in the kitchen sink under running water per the instructions on the bottle.

Letting them air dry

My first spot to attack

Spray on some buffer spray and wipe immediately.

You can see the difference. The back one is clean the front hasn't been started yet.

The final product! Not bad for 7-year old boots! Definitely less green than before!

My Standard

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

This, I would have to say, is a pretty standard teachery outfit. I even wore this sweater last year for school picture day! 

Sweater: Madewell
Button-up: J. Crew
Necklace and watch: Charming Charlies
Skirt: Corduroy #2 pencil skirt J. Crew
Tights: DKNY
Boots: Vince Camuto (Fivvy)

We (Kinda) Go Together

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Before this outfit, if you would have asked me if it's OK to wear a navy skirt with red polka-dots and a pink sweater, I might have given you a funny look. But as it turns out, it worked pretty well. Sometimes you just have to try it on and give it a chance!

Sweater: J. Crew Tippi in Neon Fuchsia
Oxblood Patent Wedges: Target Melinda Wedge
Skirt: The Limited
Necklace: Vintage
Belt: J. Crew

On My Radar

Monday, January 21, 2013

I wish I could tell you that there is some kind of theme to this stuff, but there really just isn't. Unless you count "things that I really like" as a theme...

On My Radar

Trend alerts:

  • Window Pane seems to be sticking around. Get it in a blouse like the black-and-white one above and layer it under sweaters, or wear alone with a fun printed scarf!

  • Aurora Borealis seems to be the only trend I've been able to identify for spring as far as jewelry goes. That totally makes me happy because Grandma left me a few pieces I will be wearing in the very near future. I'd LOVE to add this bracelet from above to my collection.
  • News flash, bows are still in. Turns out the trend we ladies have been rocking since infancy is still kickin'!

  • Next: 70's inspired dresses, both shape and print. Hurry over to your favorite vintage store and snag a dress in a cool pattern and have it tailored to give it a modern look. If your local vintage store is picked over, head over to ASOS and try the blue or green one above! And if your feeling splurgy, J crew has this great yellow one as well.
  • The white and black lace sleeveless BCBG dress was something I saw on the show "The Lying Game." Yes, I watch and even enjoy ABC Family shows. I will be waiting for this one to go on sale!
  • And how cool would this black Marlies Dekkers bra be peaking out from a sweater a la Rachel Berry (yes, this was on Glee too.)
  • Oh yes, there's a crab sweater too! I bought it! It's adorable. That is all.

The Windy City

I am channeling Jenna Lyons of J Crew from her recent piece in Glamour Magazine

I knew I already had all the pieces to recreate her look (ironically none from J Crew) but never thought to put them all together. See the pic of Jenna that inspired this outfit below!

It was so windy out that it was really hard to keep the layers down long enough to photograph them. Take a look at the last picture to see just what kind of wind I was dealing with. Probably should have just put my hair in a ponytail!

I saw this in Glamour and instantly loved it! 

THIS is how windy it was and what 95% of the pictures looked like!

Jeans: Gap slouchy skinnys (old)
Peplum Coat: H&M
Bird Print Top: Ebay (many more available)
Oatmeal Infinity Scarf: Etsy