Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Style: The Best Splurges for Summer

Vote below on your favorite luxuries from my summer "Luxe-uries" list:

Monday, May 28, 2012

Style: Influenster Spring Beauty Vox Box Product Reviews - May 2012

A while ago I signed up for a fantastic program for bloggers hosted by Influenster called the Vox Box. This month I received my first Vox Box in the mail. Vox Boxes are boxes of sample products sent to your home for absolutely FREE for testing purposes. This month's box included: Sheer Cover Duo Concealer, Chapstick Lip Shield 365, Soy Joy bars, Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Body Wash, Bath & Body Works Fine Fragrance Mist, Dr. Scholl's for Her Ball of the Foot Cushions, and Sally Hansen Salon Effects Nail Polish Strips. 

My favorite products by far were the nail polish strips and the fragrance mist. You can view my full review in the YouTube video below. I have also included in this post a photo of the nail polish strips (that I loved!!) and a Have to Have shopping list that provides links to places where you can purchase all of these items online. If you've tried any of these products, please let me know what you think in the comments below!


My Sally Hansen Salon Effects Nail Polish Strips in Wild Child

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Style: Best of Memorial Day Sales

Elizabeth McKay Friends & Family Sale: 
Save 30% with the code "FRIENDS30"
My Pick - Brunch Skirt $175 (-30%) Buy it HERE.
While I don't have this skirt, I have several items from Elizabeth McKay (see my post on her Sample Sale HERE) and love the high quality and the adorable prints.

C.Wonder Memorial Day Sale:
Buy one sale item, get one free with the code "CDOUBLE"
My Pick - Doctor Handbag $40 (2-for-1) Buy it HERE.
I personally have this handbag in the Natural color (not in the sale) and absolutely adore it! It is fantastic quality and is just the right size to bring along that book you're reading or a small netbook computer without feeling like a larger tote or satchel bag. 

Nordstrom Half-Yearly Sale:
Sale Prices Vary - Women & Kids Only
My Pick - Native Union Polka Dot Pop Phone (Nordstrom Exclusive)
$25.90 Buy it HERE.
Great for Skype calls on your laptop, smartphone, or netbook/tablet computer.

PB Teen Memorial Day Sale: 
An additional 15% off all Clearance Items with code "MAYSAVINGS"
My Pick - Pet Pillow Collection $20-30 (- 15%) Buy it HERE.
I personally own the French Bulldog pillow and cannot praise the quality of these pillows enough! The images are woven on in a sort of tapestry style and there is a nice piping detail around the curved edges. Everyone who sees it thinks I paid more like $75-100 for it. It is truly fantastic quality and a great value.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Style: A Weekend at The Preakness Stakes


What to wear to a horse race? Last weekend I had the pleasure of attending The Preakness Stakes, the second horse race in the Triple Crown series this year, at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, MD. It was my first horse race and I must say, everyone was dressed to the nines! The must-haves of the day? Definitely HATS - floppy sun hats, ornate woven bonnets, fascinators, boater hats, and all that's in-between (the wilder, the better)!  A lot of the women were adorned in black, yellow, and white - the race's signature colors & the shades of Maryland's state flower, the Black-Eyed Susan (also the name of the race's signature cocktail). Men were decked out in their preppiest attire: seas of seersucker suits, Vineyard Vines ties and bowties, straw boater hats with colorful ribbons, and white buck shoes.

With such stylish fashions, you might wonder how to get the look on a recessonista budget! Never fear, yours truly found her perfect outfit for the races for just around $100:
The Essentials
1) A statement hat: Choose a large-brimmed sunhat to cover up or an ornate woven hat for a more formal look
2) A flowing maxi dress/sun dress: Check the weather - if it's gonna be a scorcher a loose fitting maxi dress might breathe a little better than a short cocktail dress! 
3) A colorful light-weight scarf: Great to cover up from the sun/keep warm/make a less conservative dress more dressy 
4) A pair of platform/espadrille sandals: Make sure they have spongey "aerosoles" or use Dr. Scholl's Ball of the Feet inserts - you're likely to be on your feet a lot!
...top off with your favorite sunglasses and a colorful clutch/straw bag!

My Look:
Hat - Laila Rowe $13 (locations in NYC, Baltimore, & more!), Dress - eci New York $40 at Nordstrom Rack in NYC Union Square, Shoes - Report $40 at Nordstrom Rack, Scarf - Old Navy $10. All of these items are still available in stores except for the Old Navy scarf purchased a couple months ago. I already had the tortoiseshell sunglasses (purchased in England) and the patent & straw detailed clutch (purchased at the Tory Burch - Woodbury Common Premium Outlets).

Like the look? 
Here's a list of some similar items available online as well as a list of items inspired by other outfits I saw at the Preakness. Use them as a guide for next year's Preakness, June 9th's Belmont Stakes in New York, or just to get that fantastic Triple Crown style & cheer on "I'll Have Another" wherever you're watching! Happy Shopping!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Style: Kate Spade Surprise Sale

Kate Spade is having a surprise sale! Hurry to get 75% off select items. The Sale ends on May 16th at 11:59 PM PT! 
There are a lot of great deals on totes, cosmetic cases, tees, bangles, and much more!

You can access the sale HERE.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Style: My Life as a Betsey Johnson Intern & Her Going-Out-Of-Business Sale!

As you may have read recently in the news, my former employer Betsey Johnson has filed for bankruptcy. They just announced today via their mailing list that they will be closing all retail stores and are offering 20-50% off ALL of their items online and in the stores. Similar discounts will also be available at the outlet stores [note: there's one at Woodbury Common Premium Outlets in Central Valley, NY]. 

While working as a Social Media Marketing Intern at Betsey Johnson in the Spring of 2010, I was able to get a good look into the creative process at the fashion house - large white boards with monthly titles at the top were always lying around showing designs and fabric swatches for the upcoming collections. I was always amazed how far in advance all of these collections had to be planned! There were also lidded plastic bins and clothing racks all over the place just filled with vintage clothing (some vintage Betsey, others collected from vintage shops / her closet) which often inspired her transient teams of young Design Assistants, fresh out of schools like Parsons and SCAD. Her Personal Assistant, Stephanie, was also one of her favorite models so she was also often seen walking around the office wearing one of Betsey's latest creations.

Betsey Johnson was my first job in the fashion industry and it opened my eyes to an interesting world. For starters, Betsey Johnson's name seemed to be EVERYWHERE when I was in grade school - from retail stores on Madison Avenue to large department stores like Bloomingdale's to the bargain racks of TJ Maxx. No matter your price range, there was always some Betsey Johnson product you'd come across while shopping. They were also very popular picks for Bar Mitzvahs, Sweet Sixteens, and Junior Proms. Heck, I even wore one of her dresses to my Sophomore Formal in college! When I started working at her corporate office the thing that hit me first was how small this "headquarters" of such an internationally well-known designer actually was. The company did not take up a whole building, not even an entire floor (it shared with Modell's Sporting Goods). Most of the employees - graphic designers, accountants, production/design assistants - all worked in one large room. There were a few minute shared offices that branched off of a hallway that housed the public relations team, some contracted consultants, and a website manager. Other than that, there was just the reception desk and the large show room with a small "conference room" attached. These were my favorite rooms because the walls were covered in signature Betsey prints

Betsey usually worked in the show room, but often walked around the rest of the office. Imagine all the interns' excitement that the actual designer was so accessible! In my role, I worked directly with Betsey from time to time. I specifically remember working with her on a Canadian event she was going to be doing. We scripted and filmed a short promo video for it and another one for her Tea Party Promotion [view it HERE]. I was very impressed with her energy level - the lady has a lot of spunk and could outlast many of the interns...even at almost 70 years old! You can get a great feeling for what it was like to work at Betsey Johnson from Gala Darling's video posted last week (including Betsey's same PA Stephanie from when I was there & I worked in the all white room with all the computers and papers strewn around shown at the beginning of the slideshow part):

In celebration of her fantastic career, I've picked out my fave items from her Going Out of Business Sale. The sale only started today, so the items are still fairly pricey ($200 for many dresses, sweaters, watches, etc). I could only find one thing that was 50% off and it was a tote with a cute cartoon sketch and the year 2011 printed on it for $50. Perhaps the prices will be further reduced as the sale progresses?

I must admit, I've never been a huge fan of the big crinoline dresses (popular with pre-teen girls though) and skull-laden motifs, so you won't find too much of that in my list. However, I do love all of her feminine floral prints (which look fab with a jean jacket!), Marilyn Monroe inspired motifs, and whimsical cartoons and animal prints! I am a particular fan of the "fit n' flare" styles because they are quite flattering on most body types. However I must warn that the "tail feather" designs only really looked great on the very thin models and assistants in the show room and would not be so great on women with much of a curvy figure at all (myself included). Also, several of the photos on the site make the skirts / dresses look particularly voluminous; however, they were filmed with additional petticoats worn underneath. So, if you like that more wild look, be sure to purchase a petticoat. If you'd prefer a more understated look, then never fear - that's what you'll be getting! Without further adue, here are my favorites from the online sale:

Monday, May 7, 2012

Style: Mother's Day Gifts

As you may know, I also blog for a fantastic website called Have to Have that allows you to create your own online shopping registries. Sometime before May 13th, I'll be posting a full piece on Mother's Day Gifts over there (blog.havetohave.com) with a long shopping list of ideas for you. However, I thought I'd give you all a sneak peak at some of my best finds. Play the game below and let me know which items you think your mom will Have to Have!

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