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2013 Holiday Gift Guide

Hi everyone!

I realize that the blog looks a little different. I had some crazy technical difficulties recently that I am still working through but I wanted to share a gift guide highlighting some of the cool things I’ve had the opportunity to try this year. If you’re unsure what to get that lady in your life, these are some great options.

FRAAS Metallic Scarf

fraas metallic holiday scarf

This is a great scarf that I had the opportunity to take on a test drive thanks to the folks over at Lipton Publicity. It’s a lush, metallic scarf that will jazz up almost any outfit. In fact, I made a short video showing you some cool ways to wear it. The thing about a great scarf is that it is timeless and can be worn year round.

Visit www.store.fraas.com to check out their selection of fabulous scarves!

 

Kushyfoot Fleece Inspired Leg wear

kushyfoot fleece inspired legwearThanks again to the wonderful folks over at Lipton Publicity, I had the opportunity to try out the Kushyfoot Fleece Inspired Leg wear. I tried these socks that felt like slightly thicker versions of other trouser socks that I have. I wasn’t sure how warm they would keep my feet but I was pleasantly surprised when I wore them one chilly day. They worked great! I love that they’re thin and can work with all types of shoes while keeping my feet nice and cozy. These would make a great stocking stuffer. Everyone likes a great pair of trouser socks!

Get them at www.kushyfoot.com.

 

Sony Wireless Headphones

sony walkman wirelessI got a pair of these because of my Klout score so this is one of the types of perks you can get using Klout. I got them earlier this year and they have become a staple in my workout routine. I have had some interesting experiences getting tangled up in my headphone cords while running. These have made that problem no longer an issue. The sound is great and I wear them whenever I go running, hiking, walking or anything where I need music.

You can get them at www.store.sony.com.

 

Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg

Lean InI am an entrepreneur so I like to keep my ear to the ground when good books come out. I wasn’t sure what to expect when I first heard about Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg the COO of Facebook. A lot of the women in my network were talking about the book including my fabulously smart business partner. In fact, she suggested that I get it and give it a read. I did and loved it. This book touches on all aspects of a woman’s life; professional and personal. It’s inspirational for entrepreneurs like me as well as women who work for other companies. It’s also a great read for the stay at home moms as well. Another great stocking stuffer that will inspire the lady in your life.

Get it on Amazon www.amazon.com/lean-in-women-work

I hope you were inspired by my gift guide. These gifts could work for different types of ladies so I encourage you to check them out.

Happy Holidays!!

 

 

 

 

How do I wear that trend…rhinestone shoes

As a new fan of sparkly shoes, I was pleased as punch to see them on the runways for Spring/Summer. I have been diligently searching for a fabulous pair of sparkly pumps, but haven’t found a pair yet.sparklylouboutin

However, I wanted to share some tips on how everyone can enjoy sparkly/rhinestone shoes. It’s not very hard but when you wear anything that sparkles, you have to do it with confidence. So before you slip on your sparkly piece, slip on your confidence!

1. Wear a solid colored outfit and let your shoes shine, literally. If you are diving into the monotone trend that has been hanging around for a while, this is a good time to throw on those fabulous shoes. They can be your statement piece.

2. Wear them with a casual, basic outfit. One of my favorite things to see/do is to put on a plain white or black t-shirt, dark jeans and some fabulous shoes. In this instance, you could throw on some sparkly shoes and let them be your pop of color. They could add a little glam to an otherwise understated outfit.

3. Wear them to vamp up a vampy outfit. I’m a big fan of the sexy secretary look with a pencil skirt, fitted top and pumps. If you want to go this route, you could add a little extra voom to your va va va voom with some fabulous sparkly pumps.

So there you have it, three easy was to get your sparkle on. Once I find my fabulous pair, I will do some outfit posts to show you how I’m rocking my sparkle. But in the meantime, show me how you do yours. Send me pics and I’ll do a round-up of your looks in a follow-up post.

Sparkle on!

SAIC Fashion Show-guest post by Danielle

Danielle of beltsandbangles.com, shared her recent trip to Chicago to enjoy the sights, sounds and of course, fashion in the city!
I recently spent a fabulous long weekend in Chicago exploring the city, shopping and eating at some amazing restaurants. With the help of some web searching, I was able to score a room at a hip Chicago hotel, allowing me to stay within my budget for the four-day visit. After shopping up and down the length of the Magnificent Mile, I hopped the train to Wicker Park and Logan Square to check out boutiques for vintage clothing.

http://www.saic.edu/degrees_resources/departments/fash/index.html#fash_show

It was the perfect time to visit the Windy City because the annual School of the Art Institute of Chicago Fashion Show was held on April 19. In the 78-year history of the SAIC Fashion Show, this was the largest number of garments shown. One of the highlights of the show was seeing Cynthia Rowley, an alumna of the fashion school, who was honored with the 2012 SAIC Legend of Fashion Award.

Several hot fashion trends were on display at the show:

http://www.redeyechicago.com

 

Futurism

Many students drew inspiration from outer space and futuristic ideas. Senior Andrew Cruz showed a body-hugging leotard with angled reflective sunglasses, while Leah Babette offered a metallic menswear bodysuit with rugged army-inspired boots.

Bold stripes

Several students presented looks with large, bold stripes. Alyssa van Sickel’s yellow and white-striped top with three-quarter sleeves was a breezy, interesting look. Pairing it with a flowing gray and brown-striped skirt created a chic look that I’m dying to replicate.

Game of Thrones

HBO’s hottest new series was an apparent influence in this year’s fashion show. Lucy Silverman’s luxurious cream fur coat topped with a gold, crown-like headpiece was a hit. I also loved Jenny Farrell’s use of rich, deep red velvet in a nod to the medieval fantasy aesthetic of the TV series.

http://www.redeyechicago.com/news/local/loop/redeye-saic-fashion-show-april-19-20120420,0,6869677.photogallery

Vibrant Menswear

Menswear is no longer confined to drab colors and silhouettes. Paul Musial showed a brilliant menswear look with slouchy blue pants paired with a vibrant yellow blazer. Men, take a chance with your wardrobe this season and add a pop of color to your look.

In all, the SAIC Fashion Show was the highlight of my trip to Chicago. It was inspiring to see the fresh new faces in the fashion scene and get new ideas to keep my wardrobe current. I’ll certainly be following several of these designers in the years to come, and I can’t wait to see the hot new trends at next year’s show.

Danielle is a full-fledged, no apologies, into-the-trenches thrift store warrior. When she isn’t scouting out her next hot find; she blogs for Sears and other brands she uses. She’s found everything from jumpsuits to grass skirts to a wedding dress and gotten the old lady smell out of all of them. Read her fashionably thrifty musings on beltsandbangles.com.

How do I wear that trend…clutch purses

http://www.sheknows.com/beauty-and- style/articles/802665/cute-and-colorful-clutch-purses -for-spring

Honestly, I’ve never been a fan of clutches but my reasoning is less about how they look and more about how they’re made. I could always picture myself carrying a clutch out and putting it down somewhere, forgetting where I put it. So I was always hesitant to engage in the clutch trend. But several years ago, I stumbled across a really cute clutch that had a wrist strap attached to it.

I was pleased and that purse became my go to going out purse. Eventually it began to fall apart but now I’m fully on board with the clutch trend, as long as there is a wrist strap involved. But for those of you who won’t leave your purse at a restaurant or somewhere out, I suggest you dive into the clutch trend. They are so cute and can really make an outfit pop in a small but meaningful way.

As you can see, the picture to the right has a wide variety of clutches, some with straps and others without straps. If you decide to participate in the clutch trend, share pictures of your favorite one. I’d love to see how you rock your clutch purse!

How to wear vintage jewelry-guest post by Rebecca Lowe

Vintage jewelry has an enduring versatility that many other types of jewelry simply lack. Wearing vintage jewelry follows much of the same rules as you would with any other type of jewelry.

Combinations are important, a ruby gemstone pendant or ring can set off a white ensemble with a splash of vibrancy and color. Yellows and green colors work well with more complex outfits and vintage pendants and necklaces are best worn with an exposed neckline. Floral designed jewelry works well this summer and can be worn with more casual outfits as well as more elegant and classic looks.

The general rule of vintage jewelry is less is more. Many pieces are more complex and over-sized than modern jewelry so wearing one piece, or a maximum of two pieces will provide the most desired effect.

Antique bracelets can be frightfully expensive, but if you have any broken or unwanted pieces of vintage jewellery then you can create your own traditional charm bracelet just by using a lobster clasp bracelet.

Rebecca Lowe is a fashion and design student who currently works for the Samara James Jewellers. Rebecca is passionate about a range of fashion and style topics and also has a keen eye on fashion jewelry and accessories.

 

 

 

Psst…these are some great tips so the next time you visit your grandmother or your mother, raid their jewelry box and consider incorporating some of those vintage pieces into your everyday wear.

Product Review-Smartdogs Summer Slippers

I was intrigued when I first learned about the Smartdogs Summer Slippers. Not only did they claim to be comfortable and cool, they are also antibacterial.

Apparently them being antibacterial is a great feature to have as more stories come out about the large amount of bacteria that can be found on our trusty summer flip-flops. Here’s a particularly, ahem, interesting article from MSNBC that discusses this very problem.

Can Your Flip Flops Kill You-MSNBC

Welcome back. Now that you’re properly disturbed, I have a suggested solution for you. Since none of us want to relinquish our flip-flops in these warmer months (isn’t that one great perk of summer weather, light comfortable shoes?), Grandoe has introduced a line of flip-flops that aim to solve or reduce this issue.

Smartdogs Summer Slippers are super casual and cute flip-flops that are mesh, cool and antibacterial. I was interested in trying them out. I slipped them on and they are definitely comfortable. As the temperatures went from reasonable 70’s to unreasonably hot 90’s over the weekend, I took them to the streets. My feet felt fabulous! They’re comfortable and the mesh definitely help keep your feet cool. They definitely feel like you’re wearing slippers outside so I wouldn’t suggest them for a dressy occasion, but if you’re just going the cute but casual route, these are a great option.

If you’d like to pick up a pair, they retail for $45 on the Smartdogs website (just click the previous word). They feel very durable so that would be a good investment for a pair of summer slippers that could take you through multiple summers with cool feet. Plus, if they cut down on even some of the bacteria that the experts say are on our flip-flops, it’s a win-win, right?

Thanks to Lipton Publicity for sending me these to review!

How do I wear that trend…wrist candy

http://www.samplesalesites.com/2012/02/22-online- flash-sale-sites-invites-la-perla-rock-republic-dior- style-staples/

 

I am a fan of a great bracelet and ring combination but I’m fairly conservative in that I will wear at max three bangles, not much more. I was intrigued by the wrist candy trend. It’s a cool way to make an outfit more edgy without having to step really far outside of your comfort zone.

What is wrist candy, you ask?

Wrist candy is wearing multiple (at least three) bracelets of different styles, colors and metals. You can mix and match in whatever way you see fit but the goal is to make your wrist the statement portion of your outfit. Now, you can wear arm candy in the form of one single piece but it has to be a show stopper to qualify.

 

Be creative with this trend and show me how you interpret it. Send pictures of you rocking arm candy and I’ll feature you in a roundup post along with a link to your website.

 

Post dash

I’m a Warrior!!

This past Sunday (May 20, 2012), I participated in Warrior Dash. According to the website, Warrior Dash is, a mud-crawling, fire-leaping, extreme 5k run from hell. So…

When I saw this, I just knew it would be something I wanted to do. I started training in January and financially committed in March. I trained by running two to three times a week and doing other workouts like some of Jillian Michaels’ DVDs and other things. My main goal was to get my stamina up so that I could run the length of the race with general ease. As a 5k that means it is 3.2-3.5 miles long with obstacles along the way.

So last Sunday, me and my mom drove two hours up to Rabun County, Georgia and assembled with several hundred (maybe a thousand) people who were there to either participate in the craziness or root for someone participating in the craziness. My heat was at 2pm so I registered and then enjoyed the party while I waited to race. Like to see it? Here it goes!

Now that I’ve done one mud run, I’m itching to do another one. I feel very accomplished after having done this race and I’m excited to continue on this path to fitness. I look forward to climbing more mountains and doing more mud races!

If you’re feeling adventurous, here’s the website www.warriordash.com.

Product Review-Marika Slimming Capri Pants

The wonderful people over at Lipton Publicity sent me a pair of Marika Slimming Capri Pants. I wanted to really put them through the paces so I gave them the full use test.

They are a Capri length stretchy pants that are great to wear during working out. I’m currently training to do Warrior Dash so I run at least three to four times a week. I love a great pair of pants that I can run in and look cute while doing it. I tried on the Marika pants and they fit nicely. Since they’re slimming pants for the tummy too, I pulled them up to my waist to see if they would truly give me that slimming effect.

They did.

However, the part that slimmed my midsection did not stay up as I ran. Now, I don’t fault the pants for this because whenever I wear something that’s designed to slim my midsection, it rebels and pushes the offending item down or up. My midsection is just stubborn that way. Whenever I wear spanx, I have to clip them to my bra to get that true slimming effect over my midsection.

With this in mind, I really like the Marika Slimming Capri Pants. They made my legs look great and were great to wear during my workout. If your midsection isn’t rebellious like mine or can be properly wrangled, I definitely recommend these. If your midsection is rebellious but you enjoy enhancing your legs, these work for that too.

Plus, if you want to get a 20% discount off of any Marika Miracles purchase, visit www.marika.com/miracles and enter the coupon code MIRACLES in at checkout. I’d love to see you in your Marika Miracles so share pics, please!