Joy.

Today, I'm going wedding cake tasting with my mom. So I'm super excited about that. And while we've opted to go the more traditional route of a regular cake, wedding cupcakes are adorable. Since it's Holiday time, Sprinkles has their Joy and Peace boxes of a dozen cupcakes, in various flavors, ready for sale, and I think one would make a perfect gift for a friend that has a sweet tooth! They have delivery, too, if you want to send a box!


Would you give this tasty treat to a friend?

Gift Guide 2010: For Her!

Hi everyone! Sorry for the lack of posts last week! Got caught up with the Thanksgiving craziness- between baking pies, hanging with family, doing homework, and shopping, last week was a lot of fun, but a lot of crazy, too! I'm hoping to put together a short but sweet gift guide this week, so stay tuned! Today, I'm starting with great gifts for the girls in your life.

One of my favorite gifts to give is monogrammed stationary. It's personal, but you don't have to worry about a size or style, and if you ask me, any girl (or guy!) should have something special to write thank you notes or just anytime letters! This monogram notecard, $43 for 50, at Paperstyle, is one of my current faves.


Last year, I gave my little sister a couple magazine subscriptions for Christmas, and she's loved getting a gift every month! Since it is only about $12-$15 a magazine, it's a great gift if you're on a budget, or get a few if you'd like to spend more. Personally, I'd go to the newsstand and wrap up whatever magazine you're gifting, so they still have something to open on Christmas morning. This site has all the Conde Nast titles.

For the girlfriend that already has everything, I think these DKNY pop top cashmere gloves would make a great gift. At $65, they are definitely a little more splurge-y, as far as knit gloves go, but the mitten top pops off to let your fingers be free for things, and better yet, the thumb has a slit so you can slip out a thumb to send a text or email from your phone without freezing off your other four fingers! And, they are cashmere, so they are super luxe.


For the makeup-loving girl on your list (and let's face it, most girls are!) this Urban Decay Naked Palette would be the ultimate gift. This thing has been sold out online for most of the time since it came out, but a few pop up in stores from time to time, so if you see one, grab it, and make a girl (or yourself!) really happy! At $44 for 12 full size colors that are perfect neutrals, it's a bargain (Urban Decay polishes are usually $17 each), and the pigmentation in these shadows are superb. 


Any more ideas for gifts for the girls in your life? Let me know! 

The New Holidays

I love Christmas (honestly, I don't know many people that don't), and while I love traditional Christmas decorations as much as the next person, sometimes it's fun to blend the new in with the old. I was browsing West Elm today, and came across some decorations that could definitely become new favorites. Check out a few of my favorites below!

I swooned when I first saw this Mosaic Mirror Wreath, $34. I've never been one for traditional wreaths, I'm allergic to the "real deal" and the fakes never seem quite the same. But, I love this one, and honestly, I think it would look great up all year!


Everyone in my family has stockings that my Nana made for us, and there's no way I'd trade them for the world. But, I must admit, I have a slight stocking crush on these guys, $24. They kind of remind me of those awesome fur J. Crew vests, and, if I weren't so clumsy, I'd love to have all-white decor "when I grow up."


I'm not Jewish, but if I celebrated Hanukkah, I would love to have this Manzanita Menorah, $49. I think it's a really unique, modern twist on the classic look, but the branches are subtle enough that it's still semi-traditional.


Do you like these new versions of the classics, or do you stick to the tried-and-true when it comes to the holidays? 

What I Wore: Walking on the Wild Side

Ok, I'll be the first to admit that I'm sometimes hesitant to embrace a trend or step out of my fashion comfort zone. But this morning (well, actually, last night, when I couldn't sleep) I decided that I would try something new. I bought these over-the-knee socks in September, on a day that it was literally 116 degrees outside. Call it rebellion against heat, if you want. I've been working up the courage since then to wear them, and decided today was the day. My mom and dad kind of giggled, and I certainly got a couple funny looks when my mom and I were running wedding errands, but I was proud of myself for branching out!

Sweater: Free People, Skirt: H+M, T: Random, Socks: Forever 21,
Heels: Jessica Simpson, Necklace and bracelet: Marc by Marc Jacobs
What fashion risks have you taken lately? Any regrets? 

What I Wore: Bring on the Bling

So, I've been excitedly anticipating the release of OPI's Burlesque collection. Last week, I picked up Tease-y Does It, a dark burgundy shimmer, and Bring on the Bling, a bright gold glitter. They are both super fun holiday colors, and I did a quick mani with Bring on the Bling Sunday night. I know that in most offices, gold glitter would be pretty inappropriate, but I have a pretty easy going boss (my dad!), and he just laughed when he saw my fingertips. It's definitely a bold move-I felt like I had ten tiny disco balls on my hands, but it is so fun. Warning, however: It's a pain to take off, and makes a huge mess! I decided that I should tone down my sparkly fingers and keep the rest of my outfit a little more neutral. I wore flats during the day, and later added ankle booties and a leopard scarf for dinner with a friend!

Jacket: Sanctuary Clothing, Skirt and Tights: Express, Shoes: Cole Haan

Nails: OPI's Bring on the Bling, Watch: Michael Kors
Will you be picking up any of the Burlesque polishes? 

Giveaway! Katrin Reifeiss Scarf!

It's never too early to get a head start on holiday gift giving, and I'm always on the hunt for new and unique gifts to give my loved ones. When Katrin of Katrin Reifeiss (link to site) recently contacted me, I was instantly smitten with her unique scarf designs, made in Brooklyn. She hand-dyes each of her scarves (and skirts!), and the results are absolutely beautiful. Each scarf is unique, and I think anyone would be thrilled to give one as a gift. Better yet, Katrin donates all of the proceeds from the sale of The Silk Lab Scarf set to the people of Siem Reap in Cambodia--nothing like buying a gift and giving to two people at once! 


Katrin offered to do a giveaway to one of my readers, and will be giving away one arashi dyed scarf in Brooklyn Spice (retail value: $40) to one of my readers! 


To enter, please do the following:
1. Visit Katrin's site  and check out her brand-new holiday collection. 
2. Leave a comment with your email so we can contact you if you win! 
3. For an extra entry, follow me on Twitter and  leave a second comment telling me you've done so! 

The contest will be open until Sunday, November 21st. Sorry to my international readers, but only US and Canada readers can enter this one! 

Thanks for playing! 

Nordstrom Rack: ONLINE NOW!

One of my favorite places to search for a good bargain is Nordstrom Rack. You see, the wonderful folks at Nordstrom basically take returns on anything. But they don't put the returned stuff back on the floor. All of that stuff, plus end of season stuff and surplus stuff, and sometimes just random stuff, goes to either Nordstrom Rack, or the lesser known Last Chance (basically the Rack of the Rack, and I think we have one of the only ones here in Phoenix). I know there aren't Nordstrom Racks all over the country, but awesome news. It's now online! You still get the same great deals, with a lot less digging through the, well, racks (insert laugh here)! To celebrate, I thought I'd pick out a few party dresses and show my favorites here.

This Eliza J jacquard sheath would be perfect for any holiday party, and could potentially even make a work-to-cocktails transition, depending on how "creative" your office dress code is. It's marked down by 60%, from $158 to now just $60. Quite a steal, for the number of occasions you could wear this pretty number to!


Obviously, I have a thing for brocade today. This Maggy London brocade sheath is also only $60, again, marked down 60%. I personally feel like a black dress is an absolute staple, and it never hurts to have an extra in the closet. I think this would be really fun paired with some jewel-tone heels or a sequin clutch.


I also love this Eliza J sheath  dress. I think this could be worn as a winter white, or if you're not down with that,  you could buy it now and save it for brunch or a shower in the springtime. I love that the neckline has kind of a built-in necklace- all you have to do is grab a pair of earrings, shoes, and your bag, and you are good to go. Plus, this dress is a total steal at $55!



Have you ever shopped at the Rack before? Will you now?

Loving Right Now: Our Engagement Pictures!

I mentioned last week that my (then) boyfriend proposed last weekend, but what I didn't mention was that he had ever-so-sweetly arranged for Sarah Cramer to take photos of us in the vineyard right after Brett proposed. I thought I'd share a few here, since we just got them back this weekend! We are really happy with the way they turned out. I promise not to turn the blog into wedding-central, so to keep things fashion related, my top and tights are from Express, skirt is from H+M, and boots are from Chinese Laundry.






All photos by Cramer Photography

Loving right Now: In my bag

If you've been following along for a bit, you've probably noticed I don't wear a ton of makeup. I tend to go for a pretty natural look, but whatever I wear, I like it to last all day long. Although some things in my makeup bag change constantly, I've found some favorites I tend to stick with for everyday. If you're interested, here's my tried and true roundup!

Benefit Cosmetics erase paste concealer  I use the "light" color on my very, very, pale skin. I have genetically dark under-eye circles (thanks, Dad!) and this stuff seriously works better than anything else I've tried. The formula is great, and there is a little bit of a luminizer in it, so it makes the undereye area look even lighter!

Lancome Dual Finish Versatile Powder Makeup I don't wear liquid foundation, but I've loved this powder base for years. I apply it with a powder brush, but you can wet a sponge for a heavier finish.

MAKE UP FOR EVER Aqua Eyes Pearly Brown 2L This liner is the best I've ever tried. It lasts all day, and doesn't irritate my eyes (and I wear contacts). I've converted a few people to this formula- believe me, after you try it, nothing else will come close!

Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion, Original This eye shadow primer makes shadow last  for hours on end. Just apply it, then put shadow  on top, and you are good to go!

CoverGirl Classic Color Blush Soft Mink I love this blush for two reasons: first, it is dirt cheap, and honestly lasts forever. Second, it provides the perfect color, with a touch of shimmer (but not glitter)!

Maybelline The Falsies Volum'Express Waterproof Mascara - Very Black I'm a recent convert to this new mascara. The waterproof version is my go-to when I know I'm going to have a long day, but the regular wear is great too, if you don't sweat or rub your eyes a lot!  It makes my lashes full and long, with just a coat or two.

Revlon 12-Hour Colorstay Quad Eye Shadow - In the Buff This shadow quad is perfect for a natural, every day look, and definitely lasts for hours. I love the soft colors, and the price is right, too!



What are your makeup favorites? 

What I Wore: Wrigley Mansion

So, my mom and I have spent lots of time this week visiting different venues for the wedding. One of the places we visited was the Wrigley Mansion in Phoenix. It's a gorgeous historic old home,  built as a 50th wedding anniversary gift  to Ava Wrigley (yes, like the gum), by her husband. I decided yesterday morning that an extra half hour's sleep was worth having a bad hair day, and kind of threw this outfit together last minute! It was a great afternoon, and if you're ever in the area, you should definitely check the mansion out (there is a restaurant and bar there, now, too!).

Shirt: American Eagle, Skirt: American Apparel, Shoes: Cole Haan,
Bag: Gap, Watch: Michael Kors, Glasses: Ray Ban 


So, tell me, for you,  how often does sleep win over perfect outfits and hair? 

Lanvin for H+M

Unless you've been living under a rock, you probably have heard the awesome news that Alber Elbaz, Lanvin's beloved designer, is doing a one-off line for every one's go-to for cheap and chic clothes, H+M. Images were released yesterday, and I've picked a few of my favorites to show! The clothes won't be released til November 23rd, and I'm hoping that they will be released into the Scottsdale H+M!! Here are my picks:

I love this structural skirt! It would be great for nights out, and  definitely is
different than the other black skirts in my wardrobe currently! 

I'm definitely getting a flapper vibe from this dress, which also comes in a bright
 tomato red. The jeweled neckline eliminates the
 need for a necklace, so this would be super easy dressing! 

Confession: I don't wear yellow. It makes me look like I belong in a
hospital. However, because of this dress, I'm majorly  wishing I had a different skin tone. Please, someone, buy this and wear it for me!
 

I love how sweet this ruffled dress is, and I think it would be super
flattering. Paired with a fun belt and nude shoes, I think  this could be
 cute for a brunch or even a wedding. 

Guys, I have a black skirt problem. I actually banned myself from buying more.
This skirt may have to break that ban though! 

OK, I know this dress is kind of 80s in a major way. And it definitely can't be
counted as classic. But there is just something so fun, funky and
playful about it, that I had to include it! 


What are your favorite Lanvin for H+M pieces? 


All images via Fashionista.com

What I Wore: Nice and Navy

On Saturday, Brett and I went shopping with one of his friends to find him a suit, and then went and picked pumpkins and went to dinner with some friends! I was soaking in the chilly Fall weather, and decided to go with tights and a skirt. Honestly, my Arizona blood got a little shock to the system, and I wound up being tiny bit cold! Who knew? I couldn't decide if I liked my military jacket belted or not, so for half the day I belted, and the other half, I didn't.

Jacket: Kill City, Sweater: H & M, Skirt: Express,
Tights: Target, Bag: Melie Bianco, Boots: Frye

Belt: Gap 

So, what do you think? Belt or no belt? 

What I Wore: Virginia Vineyards

This weekend, I flew out to Charlottesville, Virginia, to visit my boyfriend Brett for the weekend. On Friday, his classes were cancelled, so we spent the day driving through the countryside to look at the leaves (since we are both from Phoenix, having leaves to look at  that change colors is kind of a big deal)  and to visit a vineyard or two  nearby. Little did I know, Brett had planned to propose! It turned out to be a perfect weekend, and we are both so excited! Here are  a few pics from Friday:

Jacket/Cape thing: Forever 21 (borrowed from my sister),
Sweater: Express, Skirt: H & M,
Tights: Express, Boots: Chinese Laundry,
Sunglasses: Ray Ban, Watch, Michael Kors 






What did you do this weekend? And what did you wear?