12.09.2014

Navy & Wine


I guess you can say that I’ve finally “popped”, which seems to be the term everyone uses when you start looking like you are actually pregnant.  It’s nice to finally look pregnant and not just like I’ve gained weight, but not so nice to have pretty much sized out of every non elastic waistband pair of pants in my closet.  I love shopping so I don’t really mind buying new pants, but I also don’t want to spend a fortune on items that I’ll only use for the next 5 months.  


Hence, I am trying to stretch my tops (both literally and figuratively) as far as they can go.  This Tory Burch sweater is a couple of years old but still remains one of my favorites because it’s super warm and soft with just the right amount of sparkle.  But since my regular tops are getting a little short I added a striped tank for some extra length and support.  


Navy is such a basic color but I tend to lean towards wearing it much more in the summer.  I love the way it pops beautifully with these wine colored cords, making this outfit perfectly festive and holiday  appropriate. 


Shop the Look: Sweater: Tory Burch (Old) SIMILAR HERE / Tank: OLD NAVY MATERNITYNON MATERNITY HERE  / Corduroys: OLD NAVY MATERNITY , NON MATERNITY HERE / Shoes: Old SIMILAR HERE / Watch: Skagen, SIMILAR HERE / Bag: MADEWELL / Sunglasses: NORDSTROM


11.24.2014

Thanksgiving Hosting Essentials






It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving is only a couple of days away. If you are a procrastinator like me, you are probably just starting to think about Thursday’s feast.  No sweat, today I am sharing some of my essential hosting items for Thanksgiving that are sure to have your friends and family calling you Martha in no time.  

First impressions are everything, so wow your guests with a beautiful and UNIQUE CENTERPIECE.  This STEP BY STEP TUTORIAL on how to transform a pumpkin in to a vase is a great way to use pumpkins that will get dumped once all the Christmas decorations come out.  Take tonight to plan like a pro with this EXPERT TIMELINE full of tips and techniques that will help you pull off the perfect party.  Not a fan of fruit pies and pumpkin cheesecakes?  This make ahead DELICIOUS DESSERT is definitely for  you!  I've made this recipe countless times to rave reviews so I am sure it will be a hit.  Don’t forget to send your guests home in style with these CREATIVE TAKE HOME BOXES.  Pick up some boxes up from your local craft store, make your own tags or download these FREE PRINTABLES,  and top off your pretty package with ribbon and some fresh herbs.  Lastly, some of the best advice I can give for entertaining is to get dressed and ready well before your guests arrive or you may just wind up answering the door in your pajamas.  And although I always love a good heel, comfort is key on a day like Thanksgiving.  But don’t worry, you can still look fabulous with these CUTE & COMFY SHOES.  

I hope your Thanksgiving is full of love and happiness! 

XO Michele 


11.18.2014

Favorite Fall Accessories


SHOP MY FAVORITES:  ONE. / TWO. / THREE. / FOUR. / FIVE. SIX.

Fall is my favorite season for so many reasons, the comforting food, beautiful foliage, and of course fabulous fashion.  I love all the rich fabrics and colors that I can incorporate into my wardrobe at this time of the year, and dressing in layers always makes things more interesting.  As with every season, the perfect compliment to any outfit is the perfect accessory.  I’ve rounded up a few of my current Fall favorites here.

It seems like everyone has gone mad for plaid this Fall.  It’s super cozy and a perfect print to wear for the holidays.  But for those of us not quite ready to don it on larger scale like HERE, wearing this SCARF will prove to be a safer but equally fashionable option.  And how about this CLASSIC WATCH  and this pair of LADYLIKE BOOTIES, both by Kate Spade? You can take either of these pieces from work to weekend without skipping a beat, and both are worthy investments that will be “in style” for seasons to come.  I always love an opportunity to borrow from the boys like with this FEDORA in a color that will go with practically everything.  It’s the perfect thing to have in your closet for a bad hair day.  And with the holidays quickly approaching keeping a little sparkle around like this NECKLACE is never a bad idea.  Last but certainly not least, no outfit is complete without the perfect bag.  Although oxblood is no longer the “it” color, I like to think of it as a new basic alternative to black or brown.  This soft LEATHER SATCHEL will  no doubt become your new go to.

What are some of your favorite accessories to wear in Fall? I’d love to know.

9.26.2014

Fall Basics



  Every season I have a favorite item that becomes part of my “daily uniform.”   Sometimes it’s so nice to just wake up and know exactly what you are going to wear everyday (must be all those years of Catholic school).  This season my “uniform” is quickly becoming this cotton sweater from the Gap with some always dependable skinny jeans and booties.     


It’s not cool enough to wear wool or a heavy jacket yet,  but there is just enough chill in the air for long sleeves making this sweater a perfect choice.  The textured raglan fabric is super comfortable and the cute split detail in the back adds just a little bit of interest.  


And although I tend to lean towards darker colors in colder months, I love that this soft mint color is right on the money with pastels being a big trend for Fall.  So if you see me out and about, chances are I’ll be wearing this or some version of it.  What are your favorites to wear in Fall?  


SHOP MY LOOK: Sweater: GAP / Jeans: DL1961 Bag: JCrew (Old) SIMILAR HERE  / Booties: Dolce Vita SIMILAR HERE / Necklace: Jcrew (Old) SIMILAR HERE

9.16.2014

RAINY DAY FAVORITES



  SHOP THE FAVS:   ONE. / TWO. / THREE. / FOUR. / FIVE. / 
SIX. / SEVEN. / EIGHT. / NINE.


It’s rainy here in the Northeast and I can’t say that I am complaining.  I actually love a rainy day especially in Fall (I know, it’s technically not Fall yet.)  It’s perfect weather for curling up on the couch with a good book or to watch a movie while throwing some soup on the stove.  

When it falls on a weekday though, most of us don’t have the luxury to do so and instead have to head out to work, drop the kids at school or run our everyday errands.  Although I don’t mind heading out in the rain, nothing is worse than feeling wet and cold.   

So when I do leave the house, I make sure that I stay dry and look cute...and not like the Morton’s Fisherman.  I rounded up some of my current favorites for a  rainy day above.  I’m loving all three of these looks and am wishing I could buy them all! 

9.02.2014

Florals


Our last summer weekend trip was spent out in Mystic, Connecticut for a little R&R before school starts and we get back to the family daily grind (school, sports, homework etc...)


We couldn’t have asked for better weather, warm during the day and cool at night!  Perfect (as I mentioned HERE last week) “white blazer weather”. 


I threw mine over one of my favorite YUMI KIM  dresses.  I bought this one a couple years ago, but as you can see this timeless floral pattern still looks great.  


If you are not already familiar with YUMI KIM , it’s a New York based women’s clothing line by American fashion designer Kim Phan.  I love her pretty vintage silhouette dresses like THIS ONE and THIS ONE , and how fun are her flirty rompers like THIS ONE?  All her pieces are 100% silk so totally worth the price, but you are in luck because a few items are on sale now, like THIS SWEET DRESS and THIS LADYLIKE TOP.  And if your eyes are set on Fall dressing already then take a look at THIS BEAUTY  I'm coveting.  How great would it look with black tights and booties? 


SHOP MY LOOK: Blazer JCREW (no longer available in white) ANOTHER OPTION HERE / Dress:YUMI KIM  Old,  SIMILAR HERE / Bag: Banana Republic SIMILAR HERE / Shoes: Sole Society (sold out) SIMILAR HERE / Sunglasses: ANTHROPOLOGIE / Earrings: LIA SOPHIA / Bracelet: Old 

8.25.2014

Buy Now Wear Now...and Then Again Later



As Fall approaches and new clothes hit store shelves and magazines, I can’t help but want to shop.  I’m sure I mentioned before that I’m one those people who has to wear what she buys immediately. So lately I’m trying to buy pieces that I can wear now, transition into Fall and Winter, and then again come Spring.  


I picked up THIS ADORABLE SKIRT  from Uniqlo last week for only $29.90!  As soon as I spotted it I knew that I wanted to wear it with tights and THESE SAM EDELMAN PUMPS I bought at the Nordstrom Anniversary sale. 


When I brought it home and tried it on with a few things, I quickly realized that this is one of those pieces that can be worn all four seasons (commence happy dance!)  And this beautiful wine color can really serve as a basic, and be paired with any other color out there.  


I love the way it looks with emerald green!  What other colors would you pair it with? 


Shop My Look: Skirt: UNIQLO / Top: Anthropologie (Old) ANOTHER OPTION HERE / Shoes: TJ MAXX (Sold Out Online) ANOTHER OPTION HERE /  Belt: BANANA REPUBLIC / Clutch: Banana Republic (Old) ANOTHER OPTION HERE / Earrings: BONNIE JENNIFER JEWELRY / Bracelet: JCREW (Old) SIMILAR HERE / Rings: From Italy 




8.22.2014

Summer Essentials - White Blazers and Graphic Tees


I think the white blazer is summer’s biggest oxymoron.  It’s an essential that looks great with anything but it's typically too darn hot to wear it.  But as summer winds down and we get cooler days and nights, it’s what I like to consider perfect White Blazer weather! 


It’s one of those items that require little to no thought, like a jean jacket but more polished.  Just throw it on over anything - a graphic tee and shorts like I did, or a sundress, or jeans.  I mean literally anything, I’ve even seen it look cute over sweats! 


Ok so let’s talk about graphic tees for a minute.  How can we not, they are everywhere!  I consider them a new wardrobe staple and I simply can’t get enough.  

I was so happy to receive a few from hip new t-shirt company BRENDA AND EDDIE  and to be honest, I’ve been practically living in them since.  I love the British Rock inspired prints and can’t say no to anything that combines comfort and cool!  Head on over to BRENDA AND EDDIE  and check out the rest of my favorites like THIS ONE, or THIS ONE, and THIS FLEECE  I can’t wait to wear as fall approaches.  




SHOP MY LOOK: Blazer: JCREW SIMILARE HERE AND HERE / TEE: c/o BRENDA AND EDDIE / Shorts: Gap SIMILAR HERE / Shoes: Nine West Old SIMILAR HERE and HERE / Clutch: Ann Taylor Old SIMILAR HERE / Hat: JCREW


8.21.2014

Art Imitates Life


Last week I talked about how much I love top knots HERE because they’re a snap to pull together and look so chic, but who knew they make great artwork as well! 

Artist and illustrator ELIZABETH MAYVILLE sure knows.   She has taken two of my fashion favs (top knots and stripes)  and used them to create fun and fashionable art!


While art is subjective, there is no doubt Mayville’s work evokes beauty and calm.  Check out her ETSY SHOP for these affordable top knot prints ($20) and while you’re at it take at look at some of her original paintings which are equally fabulous. 

  She has also teamed up with MOLLY MATTS (a designer mattboard company) to add some color and pattern to her top knot prints which make them even cuter!

Image:MOLLYMATTS

Only thing left to do is decide where to hang it. 


Image:MOLLYMATTS




8.19.2014

The Brighter The Better

Cardigan: JCREW (no longer available in this color) /  Skirt: ZARA (OLD) SIMILAR HERE / Tank: LOFT / Shoes: SIMILAR HERE / Bag: JCREW (Old) SIMILAR HERE / Sunglasses: RAY-BAN

I used to think that if you wore something bright it was best to pair it down with a neutral color, but lately I’m loving bright on bright.  This colorful striped skirt with this bright boyfriend cardigan is proof that it can look great without being over the top.  


And as Fall approaches and I try to hold on to every bit of sunshine and warmth we have left, I say the brighter the better!


Coincidentally, when I was shopping with a friend we came upon this display of colorful kayaks that matched my outfit perfectly.   I couldn’t pass up the chance to take some shots. 



8.15.2014

POLKA DOTS AND TOP KNOTS


Shop My Look: Shirt: Gap SIMILAR HERE / Jeans: Gap SIMILAR HERE / Shoes: SOLE SOCIETY / 
Bag: BALENCIAGA / SUNGLASSES: ANTHROPOLOGIE / Earrings: Old SIMILAR HERE

Clothing always influences the way I feel and this outfit makes me happy!  I can’t put my finger on one thing because there is so much I love about it.  It has a bit of an edge but it’s also a little girly, a little retro and not to mention a little comfy.   


Perfect for an impromptu weeknight date, which is what I wore it for.  


And I think you’ll agree with me when I say top knots are the best thing since sliced bread.  I mean a hairstyle that takes 30 seconds AND looks chic?  Thank you fashion Gods! 
  

Have a great weekend!  




8.13.2014

WORKOUT WEDNESDAY FAVORITES

Happy Hump Day!   

Wednesdays are always tough for so many reasons; I usually run out of ideas for dinner as I mentioned HERE, laundry starts to pile up as do commitments I made earlier in the week, and motivation to go to the gym and eat healthy slowly start fading.  So...I’ve decided I am going to tackle that proverbial “hill” head on and declare it Workout Wednesday instead!


ONE / TWO / THREE / FOUR / FIVE / SIX / SEVEN / EIGHT /  NINE / TEN /  ELEVEN 

Every Wednesday I plan to share some health and fitness inspiration that I hope will motivate both you and me to stick with whatever resolutions we made Sunday night and sail right into Friday (always in style of course).  Today I am sharing some of my favorite workout clothes and accessories in every price range.  

If you have any suggestions for Workout Wednesday, head on down to the comments and let me know.  I’d love to hear from you! 


8.12.2014

White Walls Call For White Shorts

Shirt: SIMILAR HERE HERE and HERE / Shorts: LOFT / Shoes: NORDSTROM / Bag: NORDSTROM 

 While in Puglia earlier this summer, we visited Ostuni “The White City”,  given its name because of its white washed homes and fortified walls.  Set back and on a hill, this city sits high and overlooks miles of olive groves that melt into the Adriatic coastline.  It’s a stunner! 


I thought wearing white would be appropriate for a night out in this gleaming city and chose to pair it with a black top that I picked up in a neighboring town.  I’m one of those people that needs to wear what I buy immediately.  Furthermore, it was one of those lucky “last one on the rack” finds that I may or may not have wrestled my sister for.


As we walked through the city, it was hard not to be mesmerized by all the “Greek inspired architecture” and colorful decorative ceramics.  One in particular that filled the stores in every shape and color caught my eye so much so, I had to bring one home with me.  I love to purchase items that have an interesting story to tell, especially on vacation, so more on that later this week. 

Ciao for now!
Michele 







8.09.2014

Weekend Reading : Links I’m Loving (Home Edition)



Lately our weekends have been more about catching up on things that slip through the cracks during the week and less about relaxing.  We typically have a list of home projects that need attention come Saturday morning.  Admittedly though, as I get older and home decor and interior design become more of a passion of mine, I actually look forward to it.

We are  currently working on giving our living room a mini-makeover.  I promise to share pictures once it’s done.  Since we are currently looking for a new home and hope to move soon, we don’t want to make any major changes but it does need a little let’s say...finessing. 

To make a long story short, I’ve been kinda obsessed with home decor and interior design blogs and and websites and I wanted to share some of my favorites.  

DOMAINE HOME: A girl can dream, can’t she? This site is full of celebrity house tours from which to garner inspiration, but don’t be fooled, it’s not all chichi.  It’s also a source for attainable decor ideas and unique product. 

YOUNG HOUSE LOVE: Started by a young couple who happened to discover their love for DIY and home decor while planning their backyard wedding.  They’ve since written a New York Times best seller and designed their own lighting collection, just to name a few accomplishments.  They've bought, sold and remodeled three houses on the blog which they've detailed through pictures.  It’s fun to live vicariously through them.    

IKEA HACKERS: I thought I had outgrown my IKEA phase but something tells me I never will.  This site is all about ideas and DIY tutorials on how to repurpose or modify IKEA furniture.  When you are through reading it no one will ever guess that dresser came from IKEA.   

SMITTEN STUDIO:  Clean aesthetic and simple design come as no surprise in this lifestyle and design blog run by a former graphic designer.  She also has a little online shop where she sells artisanal items all made in the USA by herself, her father or local artists.  

DECOR 8: This blogger and her contributing writers keep you up to date on the latest trends and creative ideas.  They also showcase homes and provide delicious recipes.  Let’s face it, the kitchen is the heart of the home after all.  

Happy reading and have a great weekend! 
Michele 


8.08.2014

Never Go Wrong Nautical



Tank: Gap (SIMILAR HERE) / Skirt: Banana Republic (SIMILAR HERE AND CUTE STRIPED OPTION HERE) / Shoes: Cole Hann Outlet: (SIMILAR HERE) / Bag: MADEWELL / Sunglasses: LOFT  / Bracelets: ALEX AND ANI 

There’s always a new trend popping up every season but one style that seems to make a comeback each summer is the Nautical look.  



It’s crisp, clean and always sophisticated.  And it's also probably one of the easiest looks to pull off with a few simple tips.  

1.  Start with stripes, the most iconic being sailor inspired navy and white. 

2. Add bold color.  Classic nautical colors are navy, red, and white but I like to add an unexpected one instead like green, turquoise or mustard for a more modern look. 

3. Keep it simple.  Think classic items like a simple tank or crew neck tee with flat front shorts or wide leg trousers.   You want to steer clear of anything too elaborate, no ruffles or harem pants here!  

4.  Accessorize wisely.  Adding some fun elements like anchors or ropes can look cute but too much and you’ll look like you are wearing a costume. 



I’m headed to the beach this weekend and plan to take this outfit I wore on vacation with me.  What better place to channel your inner sailor than seaside.