Pretty, Polished, Perfect.: November 2011

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Alter Egos

Lili of Relatable Style is hosting a link-up of bloggers and their alter egos.  Here's my little mash-up of my own personal styles - A little bit edgy, a little bit sporty, a little bit playful and a little bit classic:

Clockwise from the top left:

Have you got any alter egos?

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Black Friday + A Lighting Ceremony Outfit

Are you planning to brave the early morning (or late night as the case may now be,) long lines, and deal-snatching attitudes of Black Friday?  I've composed a list of some of my favorite stores and their deals (online and in stores):

Orchard Corners/Oak Park Mall

Nordstrom Rack: Go to their facebook page for a 25% off printable coupon.


Country Club Plaza - Thanksgiving Day Lighting Ceremony, between 6 and 7 pm, in front of Forever 21 (featuring Modern Family's Eric Stonestreet.)

Go here for details on stores open today (and this evening, ) as well as special offers and pricing.  Includes information for these stores:

H&M: the first 100 customers in line will receive a scratch-off good for up to $300 with dresses and sweater from $5, pants from $10, outerwear from $20.

JCrew: 25% off orders of $ only, use code YOURGIFT.


The Legends Outlets Kansas City: Moonlight Magic, 10pm. DJ, shopping, Prizes.

JCrew - Crewcuts Factory: 10pm - 30-50% most items, including 40% Womens outerwear and 40% off already reduced clearance.

Saks Fifth Avenue Off 5th: 10pm - 30-50% off the entire store - including 50% off shoes until noon on Friday!

Polo Ralph Lauren Factory: 10 pm - 30% off the entire store.

Gap Factory: 10pm - Entire store on sale, up to 70% off. (check for additional coupon.)

Banana Republic Factory: 8pm - 50% off entire store plus more deals (check for additional coupon.)

(See the complete list here.)

Hope you all are having a great Thanksgiving and good luck with the Holiday Shopping!!

If you happen to be going to the Plaza Lighting Ceremony, I will see you there (sunny and 63 degrees - woot!):

Jacket: Jennifer Lopez for Kohls
Dress: Jennifer Lopez for Kohls
Bracelets: Target
Shoes: Elle

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Body Image and Why I'm Grateful

Body Image?  Gratitude?  In the same sentence?  Not usually.  A fellow blogger is hosting a link-up about things we are grateful for (or like) about ourselves - on the outside.  You know, the parts everyone can see.

I came up with one:

1.  At least I'm not short.  I don't want to be short, but I don't really want to be Amazonian either.  I'm good with my height.  My height and I get along well (although sometimes we like to disagree when it comes to pants.)

(I mean, really.  How could I not post this picture?)

I thought about it a little bit more......surely I could come up with four more things!  So, with a little bit of sarcasm, and a mild dose of humility, I give you numbers 2-5:

2.  I'm grateful that my genes were down with losing the excess weight I gained with each pregnancy (through diet and exercise.)  Actually, just exercise.  I cannot seem to control myself when it comes to food.  #nomnom

3.  I'm grateful that I still have all of my appendages.  No, really.  I mean that. 

(I don't have a picture.  Sorry.  Just imagine me doing "The Robot" dance.  Because I'm cool like that.)

4.  I'm glad I have naturally curly hair.  It's probably like having a wig or two....will I be curly, or will I be straight today?  Hmmmmm.....  (Also, it would seem that Oscar de la Renta is making natural (a la frizzy) hair a comeback this next spring......

(Who cares about her hair, look at that dress!  I die. And Oscar de la Renta is a genius)
*image courtesy of Oscar de la Renta and google

5.  I'm glad that I don't have a toe that is longer than my big toe.  I'd probably need an even larger shoe size just to accommodate it!

lucys feet
(Seriously.  This baby has a french pedicure.  Wow.  Just.  Wow.)

That's about all the gratitude I could muster for my physical appearance. 

What about you?  Do you have 5 things that you are grateful for?

*all images courtesy of google pictures

Monday, November 21, 2011

Military Geek

Or Chic.  Whatever.

I entered this photo for the Element Eden Guest Blogger Contest.  If you like it, I could use your vote (you know, the infamous "like" button.) 

A few outfit shots:

Jacket: Old Navy
Dress: Old Navy
Shoes: Puma

A bit of photography fun: sunset and wind.

My sons asked me to photograph them while they practiced skateboarding.  My son was very discouraged about his lack of balance, but with a little bit of practice (and a fair amount of confidence building) we went from this:

to this:
Want to see more of my totally awesome skateboarding skills?  Look no further than facebook.  Bahahaha!

Hitler's Gestapo, Marlon Brando, The Ramones, and Versace

What do they have in common? 

Leather jackets. 

Jacket: Versace for H&M
Shirt: Old Navy
Pants: Gap
Shoes: Enzo Angiolini
Handbag: Versace for H&M

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Versace for H&M: A Review

H&M, how do I love thee?  Let me count the ways:

1. Complimentary croissants and drink from Starbucks while we waited

2. Designer collaborations consumers actually like (Karl Lagerfeld, Donatella Versace, etc.,)

3.  Friendly and helpful Sales Associates

4.  Well organized, non-mob style shopping (except for that opening day - that was a zoo!)

Turtleneck: Banana Republic
Shirt: Old Navy
Belt: DIY Grosgrain ribbon
Bracelets: Target
Purse: Versace for H&M
Skirt: Versace for H&M
Tights: I have no idea
Shoes: George (that's right, Wal-mart)

Two more for the road: (I had to add this one - I love the swing of this skirt!!)

H&M had the morning planned so well, keeping us well fed, warm and happy while we patiently waited for the doors to open; only allowing ten people to shop the section at a time (it was so peaceful and calm!); allowing only two of each item per customer (no e-bayers here, thank you very much!)

And thank you Donatella Versace, for making sure that your brand, designs, and aesthetic still mean quality, no matter who you collaborate with.

H&M - you have never disappointed us with your designer collaborations, and I can't wait for the next one (please, please tell me it's Tom Ford!!)

There is more Versace for H&M to come (seriously, there was some good stuff - like that bright leopard print mens' underwear......) so stay tuned!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

H&M Has Finally Arrived

Ten years after my first sale at an H&M (in Europe,) the Swedish retailer has finally come to Kansas City!  I'm headed to the Grand Opening today at noon (located at 440 W. 47th Street) and my hopes are high.  Let's hope this store is all it promises to be and more (especially after the huge disappointment with the Legends Outlets KC fail nearly three years ago!) 

Jacket: Old Navy
Shirt: Old Navy
Belt: Gap
Jeans: JCrew
Shoes: Old Navy
This will be me in about an hour.  Just use your imagination to procure the other 200+ shoppers milling around me, waiting in line for a chance at gift cards and great deals!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Baby, It's Cold Outside

Also, my bangs may be trying to eat my face.

Necklace: Target
Vest: Forever21
Dress: JCrew
Wannbe Brogues: Old Navy

I still think that fur vests are not flattering on me, but guess what?  I've decided to wear them anyway!  I've also been painstakingly reminded of why I hate bangs.  What am I supposed to do with them while they grow out??

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Busy Little BumbleBee

Sunglasses: Target
Scarf: Target (birthday gift from my Brother & His Wife)
Shirt: JCrew
Pants: Jennifer Lopez (for Kohls)
Shoes: Converse (via Nordstrom Rack)

I'm glad I checked out the first wave of the Jennifer Lopez for Kohls collection. It seems like the more stuff Kohls releases, the more it Jennifer Lopez designed it.  Back in 1986. 

Friday, November 11, 2011

$50 or Less: Day 5

The problem with cheap clothing? (Okay, just one of many problems with cheap clothing?) They are almost always too short!  I wasn't going to let that stop me, though:

Sweater: Gap
Necklace: Target
Belt: H&M
Dress: F21 ($24.80)
Boots: c/o Wanted Shoes

Be forewarned, this maxi dress is almost a midi - I wore the sweater to cover up the fact that I have the straps adjusted to their fullest length (and it isn't pretty, I assure you.)  I really wanted to wear my suede, nude wedges from the day 1, but I was pushing it with flat boots.  And I am fully aware that I am channeling Little House on the Prairie, but I just couldn't resist the plaid of this dress!

On the other hand, I only spent $25 on this outfit.  That counts for something, doesn't it?

Thursday, November 10, 2011

$50 or Less: Day 4

Sequins.  Just under $50.

Would you, could you with a hat?

Hat: Target
Shirt: JCrew
Sweatshirt: JCrew Outlet ($49.28)
Necklaces: Target + Target
Bracelet: Vera Wang
Jeans: JCrew
Shoes: Enzo Angiolini

Would you, could you with some stripes?

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

$50 or Less: Day 3

I'm not even going to try to fool anyone here.  I spent more than $50 on this outfit.  Let's pretend that the title of todays' post is $100 or Less: Day 3 (or Day 1, really.)

Old Navy (and more JCrew Outlet)

Jacket: JCrew Outlet ($66.06)
Dress: Old Navy ($13.49)
Necklaces: F21 and George (again, Wal-mart)
Bracelets: Target
Shoes: Enzo Angiolini

And how could I end this post without adding a nerdy pic with my hands in my pockets and legs at awkward angles??

In case you haven't already done the math, I spent $79.55 + tax for this entire outfit (I already had the shoes and accessories of course.)  While it still doesn't prove The Mr wrong (see Day 1), I'm pretty impressed with myself (eye roll.)  JCrew fitted, structured jackets and I go together like peanut butter and honey, peas in a pod, bread and get my point.  I love them.  How could I possibly refuse when the store offered an additional 30% off the clearance and I had an additional 20% off coupon??

Versace for H&M Fashion Show

Last night, H&M held the fashion show featuring the line that Donatella Versace created just for their stores.  Per the usual fashion party, lots of A-listers showed up, as well as a bunch of people that (let's face it) we have no idea who they are.  Here's the Youtube version:

I cannot wait to shop this collection!  Here are some of my favorite pieces:

Versace for H&M

I loved these photos from the Lookbook:

images courtesy of Google

H&M is finally opening up shop here in Kansas City (hallelujah!)  The grand opening of the Country Club Plaza store is set for Thursday, November 17 (Versace collection will be released on November 19th!)  The store will be located at 440 W. 47th Street (next to the Gap at the corner of 47th & Broadway,) and will include ladies, mens, young ladies and men, lingerie, accessories and a full childrens department featuring newborn to 14.  In celebration of opening day, H&M on the Country Club Plaza will offer the first 200 shoppers in line an H&M T-shirt and Access to Fashion Pass, valued from $10 to $300, in addition to fantastic opening offers and giveaways!

I was so disappointed when H&M backed out of the Legends Outlets KC when the mall was first built, and now I am hoping that H&M will become a staple in KC will stores throughout the area! 

Will you be one of the first 200 shoppers?

p.s. did you see the underwear I can't help but buy The Mr.  That's right: you know you want some for your man.

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Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Puddle Jumping

I'm not going to lie.  I was a young girl in the 80s.  I adored Debbie Gibson.  I thought Cyndi Lauper was the queen of punk (in my defense, I was 5.)  For Halloween, I wanted to dress in scruffy tights with holes, a ruffly mini-skirt and high heels - and I really, really wanted to wear those fingerless lace gloves.  I'd like to think I've come a long way since then. 

I also think that might be the reason why I just cannot bring myself to indulge in some of the current 80s trends!!  You know, like colored tights. 

Umbrella: Totes (via Target)
Jacket: Old Navy
Dress: Thrifted (there is no tag)
Bracelets: Target
Tights: Vera Wang
Socks: Vera Wang
Boots: Charlotte Russe

I had to add this one - as a wanna-be photographer, I love the reflection in the puddle!!

Colored Tights | Everybody, Everywear

$50 or less: Day 2

Yesterday I mentioned The Mr's lack of confidence in my ability to spend less than $50 in one shopping trip. 

Same shopping trip: I have about $6 left.
He was right.  I couldn't do it (not because I couldn't find great deals, there were just too many of them to pass up!)  

Day 2: JCrew Outlet (you had to know the JCrew post was coming.....)

Scarf: F21 ($6.50)
Necklace: F21
Shirt: JCrew Outlet ($33.36)
Jacket: F21
Bracelet: Vera Wang (via Kohls)
Belt: Target
Jeans: JCrew
Shoes: Nine West (via Macy's)

Today's grand total: $39.86 + tax.  Boo-yah!

p.s. I think I deserve credit for creating new outfits using new and old items.....for under $50!  Right?

$50 or Less: Day 1

p.p.s. I love this plaid!!  I almost bought the pants in the same plaid.....but plaid pants?  My butt + plaid = bad, bad things.  Just ask The Mr. 

Monday, November 7, 2011

$50 or Less: Day 1

Last week I found myself at the Legends Outlets Kansas City, with $50 to spend. 

Which made The Mr laugh.  He doesn't think I could possibly go shopping and spend less than $50. 

With a little help from the outlets' discounted retailers,
I set out to prove him wrong (sort of.)

Day 1:  Forever21

Sweater: F21 ($14.50)
Shirt: JCrew ($28.56)
Jeans: Old Navy
Belt: Gap
Shoes: F21
Clutch: Loeffler Randall for Target
Bracelets: Target
Necklaces: Banana Republic + gift from my Father

Keeping in mind that I paired these two pieces with items already in my wardrobe, I spent $43.06 + tax.  Take that, sucka! (and by sucka, I mean The Mr.) 

p.s. JCrew Outlet had their Perfect Shirts an additional 40% off.  It didn't hurt that I also had a mailer coupon for 20% off my entire purchase! 

*Just in case you needed to know: Gift card courtesy of The Legends Outlets Kansas City.  All thoughts, ideas and opinions expressed, as well as clothing choices, are my own. I mean that.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

This One's for the Shoe-aholics

I received this email the other day and couldn't NOT share it with all of you:

I love it.