Pretty, Polished, Perfect.: May 2011

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Five Foot Beach

That was not a typo.  We honestly have a beach about two miles from the place I call home.  It's about five feet wide and five feet back from the waters edge.  Children play here.  I think the max. occupancy is 12.  And the water isn't blue.  Or green. 

Yes, I love that picture.  Or the idea of wading into a dirty lake clad in rainboots and a pencil skirt.

Here are the slightly less dramatic and therefore less artistic photos of this outfit:

{skirt, shirt Zara belt H&M bangles Target shoes Naughty Monkey necklace c/o My Grandmother Z}

I had a sweater that I thought to use as an "accessory" but of course opted not to use it.  Quite concerned for its well-being near the water on such a windy day, I asked The Mr. to protect it for me.  Which he did. 

I barely had time to snap the shutter before he took it off, lol!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Rainy Day Flats

I don't know why, but I always wear stripes on rainy days.  Or is it that I just always wear stripes? 

{shirt H&M pants, shoes JCrew necklace c/o G-ma's pin}
 {bracelet Target ring c/o The Mr. pouch c/o PrettyPolishedPerfect.......uh, me.}

A few interesting facts about this outfit: The ring is one The Mr. bought for me on our honeymoon (in Rome.)  I nearly died the day I thought I had lost it - and found it in a coat pocket.  Yes, its' sentimental value greatly exceeds it monetary value. The necklace is my Grandmothers pin that I hooked to a chain.  Oh, the pouch, totally DIY, I blogged about it here.  The fun all rubber Rainy Day Flats from JCrew?  Didn't even know they existed until I found them on sale for $29.99.  By the time I found a store that had my size?  Extra thirty percent off!  I heart good deals, lol!  The weather is killing my hair!  It's like half-afro, haha!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Somewhere, Over the Rainbow

I wouldn't normally blog about the weather, but honestly?  It's a huge factor in life!  First, my hair has reached volumes not seen since before styling products.  Second, the rain would ruin ninety-eight percent of my wardrobe (including shoes.)  Third, I really, really, really, really hate waking my children up in the middle of the night to chill in the basement (tornado sirens.)  We've spent quite a bit of quality time in our basement these past few days.  I've used the time daydreaming about how I'm going to fix it up, make it better........

{skirt, belt H&M shirt Kohls necklace thrifted boots Old Navy umbrella Totes}

My son really wanted to be in the picture.
 I promised myself when I started this, that for the safety of my family,
 they would not be featured here.  I plan to stick to that promise.

On a much lighter and totally insignificant note, did you know that there isn't enough room in my Master Bedroom closet to house my shoes?  Guess where my shoes are stored, in the most precise organizational method (not joking, in boxes with a picture of the shoe, all organized by color.  Really.  I'll post a pic sometime.)?  In the basement. 

 In case of catastrophe, all shoeless victims should stop by my basement. 
 Haha.  But really. 
We'd have no homes and no possesions, but we'd be rocking some killer heels!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Families that stick together

Take pictures......

While in D.C. my niece A accompanied us on a photo shoot (I will call her A because that is her first initial as well as the first niece.)  We had found this gorgeous dress at Zara and I insisted that Catherine buy it for her.  I love the dress, it reminds me of impressionists' paintings (have I mentioned that Monet and Van Gogh are my favorites - cliche, I know.) 

{dress, shoes Zara hat H&M niece c/o Catherine}

We found a few things at Zara we really loved, one being this shirt.  This shirt is the reason why I prefer to take a picture of my outfits.  I can assure you that in the fitting room, under the harsh fluorescent lighting and mirror that was mere inches away, I loved this shirt.  I can now assure you, that after seeing it in these photos, I think it is just an unflattering shirt (but the shoes I'll keep.)  I fell out of love with it.  What can I say, I have a fickle heart!

{shirt, shoes Zara pants JCrew purse H&M}

I have to add this extraneous photo, because I have fond memories of this little outing to the quaint Occoquan (reminds me of the RHNY when they kept saying Quogue - I swear we must have heard it said at least 25 times!) We were like Laverne and Shirley (only way cuter, and much smarter):

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

DIY Pouch

A few months ago, I came across this tutorial.  SO EASY, right?  I couldn't wait to make one for myself.  Okay, so I made three, and have the materials to make five more (a girl can never have too many options, right? Haha!)  I know lots of bloggers have been making these, and have posted tutorials as well.  I know that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but I really wanted to take this idea and add my own style to it. 

My first attempt:

My second attempt:

I think the invisible zipper is a no-go.  Also, it looks best folded over. Regardless,  I love this combo!!

My third attempt:

I know this one is a little pase, so I added a little touch of me:

Surprise!  I love this lining.  I saw it months ago and although I had no idea what I would ever use it for, I bought a yard (which you should never do, at the risk of having shelves of fabric that, while pretty to look at, will never be "anything.")

Remember how imitation is the sincerest form of flattery?  Meet Taylor of Curly in the City, and view her etsy shop here.  Taking a page from her book, I have lots of left over fabric and have considered making a few more of these and selling them.  If you are interested, send me an email or tweet!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Tie Me Up, Tie Me Down

Just kidding.  I'm not really that kinda girl ;)

The latest Bloggers Do It Better assignment: Prep School.  My take on it:

{tie Chaps shirt RL pants JCrew belt Gap bracelet JCrew}
{shoes George (say what?!) purse Liz Lange}

That was 100% prep and I've got a bit of a rebellious streak:

{shoes Vera Wang}

This one is dedicated to my Brother Ben - who always flips his tie over his shoulder to eat :)

I don't know how to tie a tie.  In fact, the tie I am wearing is my sons (in case you couldn't tell!)  I called my little brother over to help me out.  I think it made him feel cool to be able to teach me something, for a change.  In fact, it was like bonding.  Except for the part where he kept calling me a nerd........

I can't end this post without one last story:  Many years ago, while in college, I did a summer stint working at a local hotel.  The uniform was navy pants, blue shirt and for us women, these ridiculously ugly I-dont-even-know-what-to-call-thems.

I couldn't.  I wouldn't.  I didn't.  I went to Walmart and bought a cheap, black clip-on tie.  It wasn't pretty, it wasn't polished, and it wasn't perfect.  But it was a heck of a lot better than the thing pictured above!

And because I know you want to see just one more picture of me:

I had to wear the glasses, I just had to.....

This post is dedicated to all the men in my life - your tie-tying skills amaze me!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Jungle Fever

I would like to let the dress speak for itself:

1 word: Fluid.

And a few extra photos because, hey.  I can. :)

Yes, that is me, trying not to fall off the log.  I try to be gracious, but my own clumsiness overcomes me!

{dress H&M jacket Zara shoes Steve Madden}

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Belated Mother's Day

Have you missed me?  I've missed you, my lovely readers, to whom I would be nothing without! 

Last weekend, my grandmother passed away.  But don't be sad.  She wanted her death to be a celebration of her life, with lots of laughter (I know, it sounds funny, but I'm partial to humor in leiu of dealing with sorrow.)  Funerals (hers' was aptly titled a "Celebration of Life,") are interesting things.  There's crying (lots of it, usually,) hugs, kisses, comforting words, reminiscing and for my Grandmother - there was laughter.  It's sometimes a weekend or week-long event, filled with family reunions, food, and photographs.  What CoL would be complete without pulling out old photographs, telling stories, remembering a long life that was well lived?

I was absolutely fascinated by these photos, at her daughters wedding:

All I could think was, WOW G-ma!  That's some trendy hairstyle you're sporting - I had no idea!  And those earrings!  I've never seen her wear anything other than tiny studs.  I think I realized I only knew my Grandmother as a grandmother, but not so much as an individual woman, a woman with tastes, style, preferences, a personality outside of loving children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren!   

Two more for the road:

She will be missed!

p.s. Why yes, we are Scottish - thanks for asking ;)

Saturday, May 14, 2011


Minus the color.  Sort of.  I found this dress at Kohls and thought it would be perfect for "fat" days, or those days when I have exactly 30 seconds to throw something on and head out the door. 

I also found these shoes at Kohls and thought I would reach outside of my comfort zone and try to embrace something new. 

{dress Vera Wang cardi F21 necklace c/o The Mr. shoes Dolce by Mojo Moxy}

Honestly.  I tried to embrace these shoes.  With both arms.  And two hands.  Though the leather was supple, felt like buttah, and were the most beautiful shade of lavender, I just wasn't feelin' it.  Maybe I'm too tall to be wearing platforms.  I've seen a thousand women wear platform shoes, and I was hoping maybe I would love them as well, but nope.  Nada.  I don't like them.  I don't like the proportion.  Or lack of.  I would've loved these shoes if they had cut off the bottom inch and a half.  But I just can't get past their clunkiness.  I tried.  I really did. 

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


Try to say that three times in a row, lol!  I bought this shirt a few years ago when JCrew was producing a bunch of "work" type womenswear, and they called the fabric Haberdashery (do you know why?) 

{shirt JCrew skirt Target shoes Daisy Fuentes necklace + bracelet Chaps watch Nordstrom}

I love the fabric - it's structured so it has that starched look, minus the starch feel.  You may recognize the shoes from my Bloggers Do It Better post.  This outfit makes me feel so "business-like!"

A funny story about this watch.  I was at Nordstrom perusing their fine watches (my friend Anna actually has this watch - the original, name brand beautiful watch.)  I just couldn't bring myself to buy one because I almost never. wear. watches.  Fast Forward twenty minutes later and you'll find me in the Juniors' Dept at the same store.  Right there, in a perfectly straight row, were 8 of the watches I currently have on my wrist.  Priced at $10.  I was confused (but not so confused that I couldn't buy one) that Nordstrom would offer a knockoff of their merchandise.  Who does that?  Not that I'm complaining.