Pretty, Polished, Perfect.: October 2011

Monday, October 31, 2011

Day 31: The Costume

Day 31 is a costume?? Shocking, I know.

I know.  A black cat.  I really had to get creative with this one (eye roll.)  The accessories only cost about $1 (thank you Target 75% clearance,) and it's just so easy.  And my sons were impressed - that counts for something right?

I had to add this photo.  If you've ever read my little "Dose of Humility" over there in the right hand corner, you'd get why I have to add this:

Um, yeah.  That's my best cat impression.  Haha.

On another note, has anyone noticed that the only women's adult costumes are well, adult - as in rated X?  Everything is sexy.  Adult Hermione - in a cape and school dress that barely covers your arse.  Adult Nurse - in well, you know that one.  Adult Zombie - well, lets just say the clothes are ripped in some really interesting places.  Even Dorothy gets a mini gingham dress!  I guess Halloween is the only time we can actually get away with dressing slutty.  I mean full-on slutty.  Picking my children up from school last Friday, I realized it's also the only time you can get away with letting your pre-pubescent daughters get away with dressing slutty as well.  Not that I'm judging anyone (but I thank my lucky stars that I didn't have any daughters!)

This concludes my 31 days of Wardrobe Essentials.  I hope you enjoyed it!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Day 30: The Blazer

Is that an 80s term?  It seems like it might be.  Regardless of what you want to call it, I think every wardrobe should have at least one of them:

Blazer: F21
Dress: F21
Shoes: Kohls
Earrings: F21
Cuff: Target

May we please talk about this new cuff I just bought?  I love it (and the fact that it was 50% off!)

Tell me you have at least one Blazer in your closet?

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Day 29: Hats Off To You

Hats.  For good hair days and bad hair days.  For any occasion (book club, weddings, errands......)

Do you have a favorite hat?

Friday, October 28, 2011

Day 28: The White Tee

The very first episode of Project Accessory (my jury is still out on whether this show is a keeper or not) featured white t-shirts and jeans; the basic building blocks of any outfit and perfect for highlighting great statement accessories!)
Manikan wearing white top and belt

Christina Caruso, Episode 1, Season 1

James Sommerfeldt putting belt on model in the workshop

James Sommerfeldt, Episode 1, Season 1 (that belt was a major #fail in my opinion!)

Kelly Horton putting necklace on model in workroom

Kelly Horton, Episode 1, Season 1 (loved that green clutch!)

Nina Cortes in the workshop

Nina Cortes, Episode 1, Season 1 (she won!)

I have about ten different white t-shirts, five variations on a white button-down and 2 white sweaters. 

Are white t-shirts a staple in your wardrobe?  Did you like Project Accessory?

p.s. Poor Molly Sims, she doesn't stand a chance against Heid Klum (who's not just pretty, she's got personality to spare!)

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Day 27: Those Pearly Whites

Let's hope they're pearly, anyway.  Today's wardrobe essential is your smile.  Never underestimate it's power.  I'm still amazed at how many people will smile back and even say hi if I just look them in the eyes and smile.  I've never had someone not smile back. 

And laughter.  Don't forget laughter.  Have you ever seen anyone frown and laugh at the same time?

Exhibit A. Me (obviously), laughing while at Cocoa Beach on one of those miraculous winter days where it's so sunny and warm you wouldn't believe it was February.  I'm pretty sure the whole state of Florida was at the beach that day, the weather was so gorgeous.  Even the older gentleman in the g-string swimsuit (I now know the difference between a thong and a g-string) couldn't keep the smiles from our faces.

Exhibit B. I still remember the first time The Mr and I met.  He had this almost-goofy, little-boy grin as he walked up the stairs towards us.  Love at first sight?  I don't know, but I won't ever forget that smile!

Advertisement A. Let me also take this opportunity to tout my orthodontist, Dr. Michael Klein.  He's not paying me for this, I am getting nothing in return, he is just. that. good.  If you live in the Kansas City area, look him up.   You will love him.  Period. 

Long-winded Advertisement B: Whew.  I know this a lot of me "talking" but I just have one more thing to say, I promise!  It seems that more and more often I receive postcards in the mail advertising for free lifetime (legitimate) teeth whitening.  Teeth whitening is great aesthetically, but it isn't that great for the health of your teeth (and healthy teeth are important, right?)  I would always recommend seeking a professional's (by which I mean an actual licensed dentist) opinion and have it done under their supervision.  Do a little bit of research, you may find a dentist who not only offers the free whitening, but takes your dental insurance (because that's how they roll.)  Need a referral or two?  Lenz Family Dental (on the KS side) and Summit Dental (on the MO side.)

All done.  Thanks for listening :)

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Day 26: Wristlets and Clutches

I used to carry around large handbags; they were full of diapers, wipes, extra clothes......

I started keeping "my" stuff in a handy little clutch or wristlet that I could pull out for those rare occasions when all I really needed was money, a cell phone and some chapstick.  Now I'm hooked!

From left: DIY Pouches (seen here), Limited, Forever21, Gap (seen here), Target, Forever21 (seen here), Coach & Coach (seen here).

Are you a handbag or a clutch person?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Day 25: The Black Tee

I don't wear black that often (it's just coincidental that I have two consecutive posts in which I am wearing black!)  For the days that I want to wear a t-shirt (and maybe want to hide something,) I love black t-shirts. 

p.s. After seeing the photos, I've decided I don't really care for the "turtleneck scarf" and should have gone with a good strand of pearls.  Even I make mistakes ({big laugh} and I just didn't have time to go back and retake the photos!)

Scarf: Banana Republic
T-shirt: Forever21
Jeans: Old Navy
Shoes: Isaac Mizrahi (via Target)

Day 25 doesn't only apply to women.  I think men in denim and black t-shirts are really sexy.  The Mr fought me on this one, but guess who wears the black t-shirt/denim combo now? 

Is a black t-shirt a staple in your wardrobe?

Monday, October 24, 2011

Day 22, 23 & 24

Flats.  I'm talking about shoes, not my chest (regardless of what Olivier* thinks!)  They've been in style for more than a few years now (the shoes.)  The pairs (of shoes) that I can't live without:

Black: for channeling your inner Beatnik.

Someone said my posing was "tuuurrrrible", so I thought I would try something new.

 Simply because I don't want you to ever take me that seriously:

Shoes: Gap
Pants: Gap
Shirt: Express
Turtleneck: F21
Watch: Nordstrom
Bracelet: Chaps (via Kohls)

Color: It needs no explanation:

Pants: JCrew
Shoes: Banana Republic

Buff, Neutral, Nude (or whatever you want to call it):

Necklaces: F21 & Target
Shirt: JCrew
Pants: JCrew
Shoes: F21

You may or may not have noticed my penchant for pointed-toe flats.  I'm sorry to admit, but my legs are just too beefy for a delicate ballerina flat.  The point helps elongate my legs, rather than short and squat.  So whether the pointed-toe is "in" or not, that's what I'm sticking with!!

*As a client, I would make Olivier happy in that department.  Probably not the rest of my body......

Does anyone else think that a really great designer can (and will) make women of any size and shape look beautiful? 

Friday, October 21, 2011

Day 21: Manicures Aren't Just For Men

It's fall and the humidity is finally dying down (my afro is grateful for this.)  This also means dry skin (and dry cuticles.)  I don't have the time (and sometimes I would rather spend the money on something -anything - else.)  My manicures aren't perfect.  On a good day, they might even pass an inspection. 

Here's how I do what I do (and I'm not a professional):

First, I remove all polish, oils, dirt, etc., with nail polish remover:

I know absolutely nothing about polish removers.  I do know that my dad has some paint thinner/stripper and it's pure acetone.  I also know that it works really well in removing polish (I was desperate!!  I also know that acetone evaporates rapidly.  I'm pretty sure it's not the best thing for the health of your nails either.)

I don't know what will happen if you leave it on for longer than 15 seconds,
but I'm too afraid to find out. 

After 15 seconds, I push the cuticles down with one of the bad boys:
I do know that you want your cuticles.  They help protect the nailbed and the skin around it.
I rinse the excess gunk off. 
I still haven't found the perfect base or top coat (and if you have, please please share it with me!) but this brand has done well enough:
If you ever thought you didn't need these, you would be wrong.  They help keep the polish from chipping (unless you like re-polishing your nails daily - and you have the time.)

I'm completely ignorant when it comes to the actual nail polish.  For my pedicures, I primarily use:

Diamond Strength No Chip Nail Color, Honeymoon Red

(that's Sunrise, Sunset)
I picked this polish out solely based on color.  I didn't even read the label - I just liked the color.  That is how all my polishes are selected.  I do know there are brands that are more like organic produce - they are supposed to be environmentally friendly and better for your nails (like butter.) 

I allow myself a lot of time to let my nails dry (basically during nap time - it's amazing how my children always manage to step on my feet only when I have slightly wet polish on my toes!)

I like to touch up my cuticles with:
I love the smell.  It's also great for faking a manicure in 30 seconds or less!

Want your nails to shine without the nail polish?  I use this fun thingy:

Side 1: Even Out
Side 2: Smooth Nail
Side 3: Buff Nail
Side 4: Shine Nail

p.s. I beg The Mr to use this for his "man"-icure.  Sometimes begging works.

And sometimes it's just nice to go to a salon and have someone do it for you :)

What do you do?  Do you have secrets you are willing to share with me?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Day 20: Boots

Got Boots?

Haha, just kidding.  But seriously, do you have a pair yet??

Fur Vest: Nordstrom
Top: F21
Belt: Target (I posted about it here)
Skirt: F21
Boots: c/o Wanted Shoes

I was so excited about these boots - until I tried them on.  I had no idea they were going to come so high up on my knee......I felt conspicuously like a pirate.  Of course, I happened to be wearing a pair of white denim shorts with a t-shirt when I first tried them on........

Now I love them.  I don't feel like a pirate.  Although after seeing these pictures, I may have been channeling my inner Viking, haha!  (Seriously, I cannot find the perfect fur vest!)  I feel like they just make me Viking warrior.  I'm not even kidding. How does Rachel Zoe do it?  What is the secret??  I feel like I have been studying how she (and many others) pull it off and the only thing I see is that they are super-duper petite people!!  It's either that or I just have a knack for choosing the worst. vests. ever!

Back to the boots.  Have you already picked out a new pair (or two) for this fall/winter?


We Have A Winner - Fall Fashionista Giveaway

Congratulations to Amanda, a fellow blogger and mother of two boys!  She has won this great Jennifer Lopez Pleated Ponte knit LBD (via Kohls.)  Thank you to everyone who participated in the giveaway!  Be on the lookout for more information about the Spring Fall Fashionista Giveaway (think March 2012!)

Jennifer Lopez Pleated...

Hope you have a great day!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Day 19: Cardigans

Let me guess.....the title sucked you in, right?  Haha.  It's day 19 of the Wardrobe Essentials Series and I'm featuring cardigans.  Booorrring.  Regardless of the fact that it's boring, it's one of my essentials, aaaaannnndddd I'm wearing the dress that is featured in the Fashionista Giveaway (ends tonight at 11:59 CST.)

Dress: Jennifer Lopez (via Kohls)
Sweater: JCrew
Belt: Target
Necklaces: F21 & Target
Shoes: Kenneth Cole

Did I mention the dress has pockets?  I won't ever actually put anything in them, but I still love 'em!

p.s. this could also be an advertisement for self-tanning creams and lotions.  I could really use some.

Don't forget to enter the Fall Fashionista Giveaway (that really cute LBD from day 4!)

Fall Fashionista 150 3

If you are following my 31 days of Wardrobe Essentials:

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Day 18: Pearl Necklace

I love pearls - I've loved them since I was a teenager.  I would wear a strand of pearls every day if there weren't (occasionally) other necklaces that brought more to an outfit.

I really wanted a chunkier statement peice necklace so I twisted these two necklaces (please excuse the poor lighting):

to create this effect:

Necklaces: F21 (right), Target (left)

Do you think every woman should own at least one strand of pearls?

Don't forget to enter the Fall Fashionista Giveaway (that really cute LBD from day 4!)

Fall Fashionista 150 3

If you are following my 31 days of Wardrobe Essentials:

Monday, October 17, 2011

Day 17: Keeping You On Your Toes

I used days 17, 18, and 19 all on one outfit, so I'm going to let you see it in snippets.

Day 17 - A colored belt (or ribbon, sash, or whatever else I can find to accessorize with.)

I got this fun orange belt at Target for $3.24.  Does anyone else love their 75% off clearance?

How do you incorporate pops of color into your wardrobe?

Don't forget to enter the Fall Fashionista Giveaway (that really cute LBD from day 4!)

Fall Fashionista 150 3

If you are following my 31 days of Wardrobe Essentials: