Archive | July, 2014

Outfits: Anniversary Sale Finds

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Summer took a respite this week in Seattle.  Luckily for me, that means I had an excuse to wear some of my new Nordstrom Anniversary Sale finds.  I donned several of my favorite pieces and braved the rain to bring you a couple of pictures (notice as our shoot continued, my hair got increasingly frizzier!).

P1090030Jeans: AG ‘The Stilt’ (similar), Tee: Madewell

The AG ‘Stilt’ cigarette-leg jean is a great intro to a skinny style because the cut is not as snug around the calf and ankle as a true skinny jean.  Plus, the denim and wash make these the perfect everyday jean – easily dressed up or down, depending on your outfit pairings.  These jeans are a great addition to the sale this year…and, not to worry, many great items are still available.  And, if you shop through Ebates right now, you can earn 10% cash back!  It’s like you’re making money shopping…

P1090071Blazer: Zara (similarsimilarsimilar)

P1090065Necklace: Lucia K Jewelry (not available…yet. Email Kirsty to convince her to make more!)

P1090057Clutch: Loeffler Randall

I can’t say enough about this Loeffler Randall clutch.  I love the boxy shape because it’s large enough to fit all of your essentials yet small enough to still be carried under your arm as a true clutch.  However, it also has a fabulous chain, which allows you to carry it over your shoulder as well (important for those who can’t be trusted not to lose their clutches).

P1090081Lipstick: NARS ‘Shiap’ Lip & Nail Set

This matte hot pink is such a great addition to my lipstick collection.  The set also includes a gloss and nail polish in the same hue.

P1090063Shoes: Joie Open-Toe Suede Bootie, check out this color (not on sale)

P1090038Photos courtesy of John Lovin (my favorite photographer).

Let me know what you think.  I’m always open to post ideas, suggestions and/or questions – please leave a comment.  Thanks for reading!

What’s In MY Closet: Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

Last week I posted my top picks of the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale – the best of the best, the cream of the crop.  However, many of you are curious what ended up in my own closet.  I have to admit, I was curious too; as I was hastily shopping for myself between appointments and, with my busy shopping schedule and a weekend trip away, I have not had a chance until today to unpack my sale shopping bags.

As you review my finds, keep in mind that I have a “healthy-sized” wardrobe full of jeans and sweaters.  Given that I dress pretty casually on a daily basis, I wasn’t in the market for any professional wear and I tried to keep my 50+ jean collection in mind when trying on the sale denim.  Notice; however, that I didn’t apply the same principle when trying on shoes!

As stated in my previous post, these Joie suede peep-toe booties are such a sexy shoe.  I’m planning on wearing mine with everything from cuffed jeans and a blazer for day, to a short dress or a long maxi skirt for dressing up.  The only possible negative is that I will have to remember to pedicure my toes during the winter!  Luckily, I also scored the NARS bright pink lip/nail collection – perfect for some color now and a pop of pink against all of the black and grey I find myself wearing when the weather becomes cooler.

This BCBGeneration quilted anorak is the perfect casual yet chic jacket – I plan on getting a lot of wear out of this both while out and about and while waiting on the sidelines at the playground.  And, at $130 it doesn’t break the bank!

A true denim connoisseur, I tried to exercise restraint by only considering pairs unlike any that I already own (imagine that?!).  These Hudson high-rise skinnies are so soft and almost fit like a legging.  Although brown, I imagine them being very versatile – I plan on wearing mine as I would my standard grey jeans.  Paired with black booties, they’re an edgy alternative to blue jeans yet not as bright as other colored denim.  I tried them on with my new Aquatalia moto boots and paired them with this awesomely slouchy Leith tee and Halogen long cardigan – it’s just the look I’m going for.  Truth-be-told, if it weren’t in the mid-80’s today, I probably would have kept this outfit on.

I am so excited to wear this Equipment Plaid Silk Shirt, a more refined take on the grunge look that has continued to be a huge trend.  The shirt is long enough to wear with leggings, yet the silky material keeps it feminine and the silhouette is narrow.  Also awesome with my new jeans and moto boots!  Throw on my new Eileen Fischer Alpaca Vest over the top for a perfectly edgy yet feminine look.

I was really impressed by Nordstrom’s selection of handbags this year.  I had difficulty narrowing down my selections but I have been eyeing variations of this Loeffler Randall clutch for sometime.  In particular, I love the two-tone color with the mixed print and the snake-embossed texture.  Plus, the boxy shape is unique among the other clutches in my collection.  I also snapped up this See by Chloé hobo bag.  The handle appears short in the photos; however, it is actually the perfect length for both shoulder wear and holding on your arm or in your hand.  Act fast, these are sure to be gone soon!

Sweaters paired with skinnies and booties have been my go-to’s for easy fall dressing.  While I tried not to buy too many (given my knit collection), I loved how the studded shoulders on this Halogen cashmere sweater made it feel unique.  Paired with my new Rag & Bone Newbury booties, this is a simple yet elegant look that I can pull together in minutes.  Now…about the booties.  I snapped these up the first day of the sale (a charcoal color was available online, the brown I snagged in the store).  While I can no longer find them on the Nordstrom site, it may be worth calling your local store or favorite sales person to search.

I have been wanting an update to my standard workout leggings and these Nike marbled print pants fit the bill.  Likewise, I have been trying to branch out from my standard aviator glasses and actually tried on these MICHAEL by Michael Kors glasses prior to the sale.  I love it when things work out that way!

Finally, an underwear refresh with these Hanky Pankys, the most comfortable thong ever.  Truly – give them a try! And, the Voluspa candles are a great price and perfect for last-minute hostess gifts.

I would love to learn what you have purchased, or are considering – please leave me a comment.  Thanks for reading!

What I’m Lovin’: Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Picks

This post should be titled: “Better Late Than Never”…I have been shopping the sale nearly non-stop for the past 5 days.  Sadly, I haven’t had a moment to share my favorite finds (until now) but, the plus side is that I am confident that I have seen, felt and tried nearly every item in this year’s sale.

Before I get ahead of myself, I’m talking about The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale – an annual holiday for die-hard shoppers such as myself.  No really…when I had a 9-5 job, I used to take the day off, or at least the morning of the sale.  Back in “the good ole’ days,” the doors opened the first morning of the sale at 7am and eager shoppers would run through the store, willing to go “to the ropes” over designer denim and fall boots.  Now, in the more civilized world of internet shopping, Nordstrom card holders are allowed to “pre-shop” both in the stores and online a week prior to the sale opening to the general public.

Although “pre-select” shopping began nearly a week ago, there are still deals-a-plenty.  Your favorite sales person may tell you otherwise, but they restock nearly everything in preparation for the public sale opening – which is this Friday, July 18th.

Before sharing my favorite picks, let’s talk sale shopping strategy.  A huge sale, such as the Anniversary Sale, can be overwhelming (even for a seasoned shopper such as myself).  I first focus my attention on fall staples such as boots, handbags and coats, and head straight to those sections (or sort online).  I also use this sale as an opportunity to splurge on brands I wouldn’t ordinarily consider at full-price.  Again, knowing YOUR brands can help you refine your search.  Finally, the Anniversary Sale is a particularly great time to refresh your basics – for example, this is the only time of year that I purchase bras and underwear.

Shoes A great opportunity to snap up some fall boots at discounted prices.  These 3 shoes are but a small sampling; however, I was so impressed with this year’s selection that I couldn’t choose just one pair.  If you only have time or budget to shop one section of the sale, peruse the shoes!

Frye ‘Molly’ Boot

A solid tall boot with elastic back for an easy, classic and sleek look.  For most, these hit right under the knee and don’t have the gap issue some may experience with a zippered closure.

Joie Suede Open-Toe Bootie

The sale offers several peep-toe bootie styles and they are all pretty awesome.  I ended up taking these home because once they were on, they were differentiated as the. sexiest. shoe. ever. (period).

 

 

Nike ‘Internationalist’ Sneaker

I can’t believe these are on sale – particularly since I just bought a red pair full-price about 30 days ago! I cannot take mine off because, surprisingly, they go with everything! Don’t just stick to athletic apparel, try them with boyfriend jeans and a slouchy tee or even skinnies and an oversized sweater.  I’ve even seen chic women pairing sneakers with dresses and skirts – go for it!

Denim The Anniversary Sale generally offers great deals on designer denim.  This year’s sale brands include AG, Paige, J Brand, Mother, Rag & Bone, Hudson, Citizens of Humanity and several others.  Skinny is still a huge trend; however, there were also several boyfriend and mini-bootcut pairs to choose from as well.

 J Brand Dark Plum Skinnies

These burgundy skinny jeans can be paired with everything – black, brown, grey, taupe, chambray, and even fall’s berry tones.  I bought a similar colored pair 2 years ago and they are still one of my go-to’s.  And, so easy tucked into the Frye boot above or worn cuffed with these Steve Madden Booties.  Better yet, pair with these Leopard d’Orsay Pumps…meow!

Handbags The choices were plentiful here too.  Handbags is the one area of the sale where shopping early can be really important, if you are in the market for a designer handbag.  This year’s “It Bag” was the Chloe Marcie Bag offered in 3 colors.  Unfortunately, these were mostly snapped up the first day.  However, many great bags remain from such brands as Tory Burch, Rebecca Minkoff, Frye, Marc by Marc Jacobs and Kate Spade…to name only a few.

Loeffler Randall ‘Rider’ Clutch

I am obsessed – I have been eyeing these clutches for several months, often pulling them for many of my clients.  Such a unique yet classic look.  As you can imagine, my heart skipped a beat when I discovered it among the sale handbags this year – and for $100 less than their normal retail price!

Accessories Always worth it to browse here – beautiful sunglasses, scarves and belts at great prices.

Michael by Michael Kors Sunglasses

Another item I have had in my shopping bag…grateful I hadn’t pulled the trigger! I am a tried-and-true aviator fan but these seemed to give me the best of both worlds – the frame of a larger pair of glasses with the sleek metal sides that make the glasses lighter and don’t take up as much real estate on my face.

Nordstrom Abstract Scarf

A sale favorite – these scarves are absolutely beautiful.  The abstract colors add interest and all 4 colors offered are amazing (and a terrific deal at $32).

Sweaters There were so many great choices here – from designer brands such as Vince and Autumn Cashmere to the house brands like Trouvé and Halogen.  Although you won’t be wearing these for several more months, this sale offers cozy, luxury-feeling knits at a fraction of the cost!

Halogen Embellished Shoulder Sweater

The studs on the shoulders toughen up an otherwise classic cashmere sweater.  The taupe is lovely but for my fellow fair-skinned friends, they also offer black.  This is so easy paired with the J Brand burgundy jeans above or a chic way to add some edge to a classic pencil skirt.

Coats Last year I bought 2 winter coats at the Anniversary Sale, so I had to restrain myself.  Prices range from expensive (Burberry and Mackage) to affordable (BCBGenration and Steve Madden).  Whether you’re in the market for a lady-like car coat or an edgy quilted anorak with leather detailing, you can surely find something fabulous among the sale offerings.

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Trouvé Leather Moto Jacket

This jacket is very similar in design to a much more expensive Vince leather jacket.  It is so simple and beautiful on, yet the leather is so on-trend.  I look at the leather jackets each sale because Nordstrom never disappoints.  If you are in the market for leather this fall, DO NOT miss this sale!

Professional Attire Great offerings from classics like Vince, Joie, Theory, Equipment and DVF.  This is an area where I may splurge on a finer piece that I wouldn’t ordinarily consider at full-price.  However, Halogen has many terrific items on sale this year too, including this Leather Pencil Skirt and Embellished Sweater.

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Theory Silk Top

The fit is so flattering on this top with a tailored detail in the back giving the silk blouse a fabulous drape  And while a demure cut, the zippered detail adds interest and intrigue.  So easy to pair with a classic slim trouser – skip the necklace, simply add a pair of earrings and your out the door!

A few final considerations…

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Hanky Panky Low-Rise Thong

A staple – try them. Enough said.

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Hue Ultra Suede Leggings

The Hue Leatherette Leggings have been a sale favorite for a number of years.  The suede are a more tame version, yet equally as chic paired with booties and a tunic.  The black are classic but I bought a pair in the rich, brown color, which I plan on pairing with jewel-tone knits as the temperatures dip.

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Voluspa Two-Wick Tin Candles

These make great hostess gifts – such a great deal at $10 a piece!

What are you “lovin'”? And what’s on your list for fall? I would love your feedback…have you shopped the sale? Let me know what you bought!

Thanks for reading!

What I’m Lovin’: My Beach Bag of Tricks {Guest Contributor}

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Hi all – Jacqueline here.  Jenn has asked me to contribute more often to the blog; therefore, I will be giving you a regular peek into what I’m Lovin’ including favorite finds, fashion challenges and styling secrets, in addition to also providing entertaining ideas and recipe discoveries.

During a recent girls’ weekend, a friend politely snooped in my purse to uncover “my bag of tricks.”  After weeding through a few Hot Wheels, golf balls and crackers, it was fun to discover and share some of my favorite finds.  Rather than sharing the contents of my purse with all of you, I am listing a few of my favorite items just in time for summer.

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Jan Marini Physical Protectant SPF 45

As much as I love to be tan, I have been trying to limit my sun exposure by using a moisturizer that has broad-spectrum UVA and UVB sun protection. The best one that I have found is by Jan Marini. The moisturizer has a slight tint and leaves no trace of white film on your face; it goes on very sheer and is water resistant. The 2 oz tube lasts longer than you would think – a little goes a long way!

NARS Bronzing Powder (Laguna)

To provide a sun-kissed glow (again trying to limit my sun exposure), I love NARS Bronzing Powder (my favorite color is Laguna). It is a matte powder without any sparkle or shimmer. I actually found this gem a few years ago when I asked a male sales person with glowing skin what his secret was. His complexion was so compelling that I immediately purchased it and haven’t looked back.

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Benefit Bad Gal Waterproof Mascara

Every girl has their favorite makeup item, and mine is mascara. However, when I am playing in the pool or spending the day at the beach, the last thing I want to be concerned with is makeup.  When I want to look my best yet my makeup has to withstand water, sweat and tears, this Benefit mascara is my go-to. Although I would not use this mascara everyday as removal can be a challenge, it is nice to have a little pop around the eyes on special beach days with your main man or even on a poolside girls’ trip.  I use Benefit They’re Real Mascara for day-to-day, va-va-voom lashes.

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Kerastase Serum Oleo-Relax

My hair is quite curly.  If I don’t use hair products, I could leave the house having straightened my hair only to return with curls (especially in the Seattle rain). The Kerastase Serum Oleo-Relax has made my hair consistently glossy and straight. Whatever hair struggles you have, I’m confident that Kerastase would have something for you! Although the price is steep, a little goes a long way. I can usually go 10 months without having to purchase a new bottle (washing and styling my hair 6 days a week).      

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Longchamp Le Pliage Tote

For years I have noticed chic women carrying the Longchamp Le Pliage Tote and, frankly, wondered what the appeal was. I am sure many of you have used this bag for awhile, carrying books and laptops – you may have even have moved on. However, for me it is my new favorite, catch-all bag for daily travel.  I totally get it now, as this bag can easily fit all of my family’s belongings while we are out and about – including sunscreen, flip-flops, baseball mitts and hats…and Hot Wheels.  It doesn’t feel too cumbersome to carry, as it hangs comfortably from my shoulder and has a zipper for secure storage.  Although I haven’t had to use a diaper bag for years, my family still totes a lot of stuff and this bag is an excellent and fashionable carry-all.

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Williams-Sonoma Spicy Grilled Chicken Salad with Peppers and Tomatoes

One of the best things about a home-cooked meal is being able to enjoy it again the next night – who doesn’t love the ease of left-overs?! This salad is a Williams-Sonoma longtime summer favorite.  When I make it, I add a box of cous cous, double the dressing and often add heirloom tomatoes for extra color.  It is best served chilled (day 2), yet I can’t resist eating it when it is still slightly warm from the chicken and cous cous.  It’s that good!

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Frances Ford Coppola Sofia Mini

During the warmer summer months (or year-round!), I would like a cold glass of Champagne/sparkling wine, but…when everyone else is drinking Chardonnay, I hate to open a whole bottle only to have it go to waste.  Sofia Coppola’s Blanc de Blancs 4-pack are little 187 ml cans that are perfect for having just a glass (or two).  The only problem is that my local grocery store sometimes runs out and I have to patiently wait for more.

flowers

photo credit: rosemarywashington.wordpress.com

Who doesn’t love fresh flowers? In Seattle, Pike Place Market has amazing flowers (among many other things), but minimal parking and summer crowds can make a quick stop difficult, if not impossible.  Luckily for those living in the area, Seattle has many Neighborhood Farmer’s Markets. My personal favorites are the South Lake Union, Ballard and Queen Anne markets, with each providing different festivities. Every week I grab a $10 bouquet of flowers to sit on my dining room table for my entire family to enjoy. Ten dollars well spent!

Please leave a comment letting us know your summer staples.  Or provide us with a future post idea – we’re open to suggestions.  Thanks for reading and enjoy your summer!

~ Jacqueline {and Jenn}

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