DIY to Try: Chevron Canvas Panels

I've admitted before that I'm not exactly a crafty type. But, after I had successfully completely two DIY projects, I felt like I could maybe take on a little bit bigger of a project! I'm more than mildly obsessed with chevron stripes, and I kept seeing chevron walls on Pinterest, and I decided I wanted to do something non-permanent with them in our long entry hallway. Painting three oversize canvas panels fit the bill. I've been loving yellow lately, and I decided the boring white wall could use a little color, so I went with a bright, sunny yellow for my stripes. 

In the interest of full disclosure, when I was trying to figure out how exactly to paint my chevron stripes on my canvases, I found this helpful tutorial by Jess of Jess LC jewelry. Like I said, I'm not too crafty. And I kind of get overwhelmed with projects easily. I tried to follow her directions, using a printable stencil template, and I taped and re-taped for an hour before I called it quits on that method. I think her panels may look a little cleaner than mine, but I'm still pretty happy with how mine turned out when I kind of freestyled things a bit! If you're more patient or not inept at crafts like me, her tutorial is great, but if you are like me, read on. 

So here's what you'll need: 
3 18x24 inch canvases (obviously, adjust for your space/desired look!) 
Acrylic paint
Paintbrush
Painter's tape


And here's the how-to: 

1. Measure out your tape- it makes things easier if you cut a bunch of pieces at once. I cut mine into 5.5 inch strips- it's important that the strips be the same length so that the chevron stripes. Also, try to keep the cut ends straight, so the corners of the stripes are nice and sharp. 


2. Start by overlapping each piece of tape to make the chevron shape, and continue to the bottom of the canvas. You'll want to make sure the edges of the stripes are pushed down  so paint doesn't sneak under, and try to keep each row as uniform as you can. You can always pull the tape up and try again- I definitely did! 



3. The fun part! Paint two coats of paint evenly. When the paint is dry to the touch, you can gently remove the tape, and you're done! 


And here's the final product!



Fashables Fall Trend Report

I was super excited when Ryan from Fashables asked me to share one of my favorite Fall trends for their Fall blogger trend report! You can check out the whole report here



What I Wore: More Stripes

I have a confession to make. I think I've developed a full-blown stripe addiction. I just love them so much, and I can't resist! I picked up this sweater towards the end of the summer, when I was in Arizona- why any store thinks that Arizona needs sweaters when it's 115 degrees is beyond me, but I finally pulled it out yesterday for the first time, and I must say: I'm glad I gave in to these stripes! 

{sweater: Loft, jeans: Uniqlo, shoes: hive and honey} 

Zara Launches E-Commerce!

A couple of weeks ago, fashion-loving girls (and guys) everywhere around the USA rejoiced when Zara finally launched e-commerce. Zara has long been the go-to spot for many who were looking for fashion-forward clothing that was a little more upscale than H+M, but still fairly budget-friendly. I decided to share a few of my favorites from the newly created online shopping site. There's a ton of variety in the pieces offered, and I think my personal three favorites are the faux sheepskin vest, the cape dress, and that sparkly sequin mini! You can click on the photos to head to Zara's site!

      

      

      

What's your favorite Zara piece? 

Spike the Punch Neon Necklace

It's been rainy and dreary here in Charlottesville for the last couple of weeks. On the plus side, I've gotten to wear my new Hunter boots a lot, but on the downside, it's a little depressing to see gray for so many days in a row! I'm thinking this necklace from Spike the Punch, $36 might be the perfect thing to brighten things up (the shop is currently out of stock, but the shop-owner is busily making more!)!





Best of: Contrast Trim

Every season, there are the big trends that every magazine seems to cover, like this season's bright pants and then there are the smaller trends that seem to emerge more quietly. When I was doing a bit of online window shopping this weekend, I happened to notice that contrasting trim was in many of the coats and jackets that I was seeing on my screen. It's a little bit of the popular preppy trend, but not quite as in-your-face as plaid, and to me, it looks so pulled together, and adds some interest to basic blazers and tops. Here are a few of my favorites I spotted: 




1. Hacking Jacket, $250, J.Crew
2. Alexa Chung x Madewell Ruby Jacket, $158
3. Sweater Blazer, $168, J.Crew
4. Streetscape Cape, $198, J.Crew
5. Silk Drafter's Blouse, $118, J.Crew

Best of: Clutches for Day

To me, few things look more polished that a woman carrying all of her essentials in a clutch during the daytime. Truth be told, I'm usually the girl with everything spilling out of a giant bag, but I dream of being the woman that's streamlined things down to the essentials. These clutches are a little more casual and a little larger than your average night out with the girls clutch, so they can still hold your important things, but still have that super chic, pulled together look. 






1. Rebecca Minkoff, $330 If your style tends to lean more towards the rocker side, this bag is perfect for you, and if you don't, this clutch will add the right amount of edge to your look. The strap is detachable, which adds versatility- you can carry hands-free when you've got coffee in one hand, phone in the other.
2. Michael Kors, $250 I don't think daytime clutches come more classic than this one from Michael Kors. This gorgeous caramel color leather bag will be in your closet for years to come.
3. American Apparel, $50 Looking for something fun and funky? This American Apparel clutch comes in a rainbow of colors, and makes for the perfect canvas for a fun DIY project.
4. Asos, $36 Leopard may not fly in the office, but this leopard print clutch would be perfect for weekends. The gold hardware and slim shape make this a very streamlined, clean, bag.
5. Clare Vivier, $104 This clutch may be too small for some for day, but the envelope shape is perfect, and with all of the neon and neutral on the runways for Spring 2012, this clutch will be on-trend for several more seasons!


Do you love clutches during the day, or are they a for-night-only staple in your closet? 

What I Wore: Slightly Crazy

So, I know I've mentioned a time or two that I was excited for fall on the east coast. Sorry if I'm driving everyone crazy with that. I promise I'll stop. At least until the leaves start to change! Anyways, I have a bit of a confession to make. I was so excited for fall, that I bought a jacket, in the middle of July- in Newport Beach. Yeah, I think I may have been a little crazy, but this baby has been hanging in my closet for a couple months now, and today, I couldn't wait any longer to wear it. Well, until I walked outside to take a photo, and promptly started sweating, and then looked at the forecast- 78 degrees is the high today. I think this is what people call "rushing the season," and the coat is now back on its hanger! Oops. 

{Jacket: Halogen- Nordstrom, Skirt: BCBG, Top: J.Crew, Shoes: Cole Haan}

Are you guilty of rushing the season? 

Best of: Throw Pillows

Throw pillows are a great way to easily update a room's look and feel. They can add texture, color, and interest to an otherwise bland couch, and they're more or less commitment-free. I'm definitely a fan of investing in well-made, classic furniture, and adding fun accessories (like pillows or lamps) that allow you to make things a little more fun and trendy. These are a few of my current favorites: 


Which pillow is your favorite? 

Closet Organization

So this weekend, the rest of my clothes arrived (via my car that was shipped) in Virginia. While most of my stuff has been here for months, there were still some additions to the closet to be made, so I decided to take some time and straighten things up in our closet, and I decided I would share a few photos of little solutions I've found work  for me!  I definitely think that when your closet is more organized, you wear more of your clothes and getting ready is so much easier, because you can actually see all of your options. 

So here's what we're working with...
Brett keeps most of his clothes in drawers, and I hang pretty much everything, save gym clothes, up. He still has room in the closet for the stuff that needs to be hung up, but I definitely take up more room in the closet! 

I fold all of my sweaters to save the shoulders from getting stretched out by the hanger, and decided to keep them out in the closet instead of in a drawer, so I can see what I have more easily.

I stack all of my purses next to one another, again, so I can see what I'm working with. I'm terrible about changing out my handbags, so I'm going to try to work on that, and hopefully having all of them out will remind me to do so! 

I keep my boots from falling over by sticking wine bottles inside them when I put them in the closet. Rolled up magazines work well, too! 

I try to keep my tops arranged by sleeve length, and roughly by color (truth be told, they aren't always, but hey, it's ok!) and this weekend, I switched all of my summer tops to the back of the closet, since I won't be reaching for them for a few months. 


Before this weekend, all of my tights were sitting in a heap in a drawer, and I could never find the pair I wanted. I looped them over hangers so I can find them more easily. Since I have a hard time telling navy and black apart sometimes, I put all of my black tights on white hangers, and all of the non-black ones on a blue hanger! 

I keep all of my belts on thumbtacks behind my tops- my one exception to my "you need to see it to wear it" rule. I've tried belt hangers before, and I just always feel like they all get tangled up! 

I did the same thing I did with my tights with my scarves. Random note, but I realized I have a strangely high number of scarves for someone who previously lived in a desert!

I love these shoe hangers- I have this one in this closet, and we keep another in our coat closet, too. I've had these hangers for a few years, but you can buy a similar one here. They make seeing my shoes easy, and I can get a pair in one cubby for most pairs.

I keep the majority of my pants on the lower rack, folded over once, and my skirts (and Brett's shorts) behind them, again, color-coordinated.  You can barely see it, but in the corner is one of our hampers. We keep three- one for each of us, plus one for dry cleaning (under Brett's suits), which makes things easier when we're sorting laundry or taking everything to the cleaners- the hamper bags come out, and have handles for carrying! 


How do you keep your closet organized? 

Best of: Polka Dots

Polka dots were a huge trend on the Fall runways, and I think that this is such a fun, easy to access trend. While wearing a bright red pair of polka dot heels may not be for everyone, you can incorporate polka dots in other ways, whether that be with a handbag, tights, or just a hint of spots on a laptop bag. I love the retro feel that polka dots add to a piece of clothing, and they're playful, yet classic, at the same time. Here are a few of my favorite ways you can incorporate this trend this fall. 



1. Purse, $295
2. Tights, $32 
3. Shoes, $396
4. Laptop case, $60
5. Dress, $59.99 


Will you be wearing polka dots this fall? 

What I Wore: Chilly

So, last Wednesday, I wore the outfit in this post, and truth be told, I was a little warm. And then a funny little thing happened. I woke up Thursday, and it was chilly. The low temperature was 45, and it was raining, so I decided to bust out the boots and tights for dinner with some friends. And I'm glad I did! While we were taking these photos, I realized I was still a little chilly, so I grabbed my jacket before we left. I'm loving the gorgeous, crisp weather we've had for the last few days, and I'm looking forward to what the next few months will bring!

{dress: Uniqlo, belt: Shareen's Vintage, tights: Target, boots: Frye, jacket: Kill City}

What did you wear this weekend? 

DIY to Try: Wall Mounted Jewelry Box

So, I've been realizing lately that I don't wear a ton of the jewelry I have on a day to day basis, and I figured out why! I don't keep my jewelry out, and I always wind up spending forever trying to untangle things. So, I decided I needed a better jewelry storage system. The problem is, I don't have a lot of surface area in our bedroom/closet, so I wanted to make something that could hang on the wall, that would also work for storing rings and chunky bracelets, too. I googled around and came up with the following from a lot of different ideas. 


You'll need: 
1 Shadowbox (mine was 11x14 inches, found at Michael's on sale for $14)
Screw in hooks- I used white, but you could definitely paint your own if you wanted a fun color! And I used 8 hooks, but you could add more if you needed more, as well as adding more lower on the board for bangles or earrings. 
1 piece of printer paper
1 Marker
1 Nail and Picture hanger and a Hammer


Time Needed:
This took me about an hour or so, from start to finish, but if your hands are  stronger, the screwing in will take a lot less time!



Directions:

1. Remove the glass from the shadow box, and take out the back of the box. My shadow box had a plastic barrier holding the glass in, so I used a small screwdriver to pop the barrier off, then removed the glass.


2. About an inch or so from the top (you want to give it a little room so you can reach above the hooks to hang necklaces), line up a piece of printer paper in a straight line, horizontally, and tape down the paper. 



3. The paper will become your guide so you get all of the hooks in a straight line. Lay out all of the hooks you want at the top, and then place a dot where the screw should go. 


4. Starting on one end of the board, screw the screw in. You'll have to push pretty hard, but it will go through eventually! Continue down the row, screwing each screw where you made the marker mark, until all of your screws are in. If you want more screws lower on the board for earrings or bracelets, measure where you want those, and screw those in, too! 



5. After all of the screws are in, remove the guide by gently tearing it away.



6. Fit the board back in to the shadow box. 


7. And now you can hang your box, and add all of your jewelry! I used the top ledge to store bangles, and kept smaller earrings and rings safe inside the inside edge of the box!






And you're done! How do you store your jewelry? 

I'm Featured on Cville Fashion!

Today, a little interview I did with Dana, a local blogger, from Cville Fashion, is up on her blog! Check it out here!

What I Wore: Transitioning

The weather here in Virginia has gotten a lot cooler in the last couple days, and this weekend, there are lows in the 40s and 50s. I'm so excited to experience my first real Fall here, since Arizona stays hot until October (or November). I may have busted out this sweater a little prematurely, but I picked it up at a J.Crew warehouse sale a few weeks back, and I couldn't wait to wear it any longer. It combines two of my favorite things- stripes and sequins! I paired it with shorts, since it's still a little warm, and I think this makes a great transitional weather look.

{sweater: j. crew, shorts: gap, shoes: hive and honey, watch: MK, ring: made her think}


{mixed things up with my nails and painted a couple glittery gold}
Have you brought out any Fall clothes yet?