Saturday, July 30, 2011

Pregnant PFC #9: Heat Wave Appropriate

It's (Pregnant)PFC time and this month's host is the ever-lovely Elle of Fast Food and Fast Fashion!  I've probably got maybe 1 more pregnancy PFC left in me and then it'll be PFCs dealing with post-preggy belly LOL.

The Challenge:

When it comes to New England weather, there is rarely an ambient temperature. When I am not suffocating in the heat outside I am bundled up and hanging onto my winter coat for dear life inside the confines of the well air-conditioned office walls.

With this dilemma in mind, I challenge you all to create an outfit that accounts for the various environmental factors that plague us in the summer. I want to know how you dress when it's 90 degrees outside and 65 degrees inside. Do you utilize peel-able layers? Are you particular about choosing fabric that is light but resistant? Or do you just tack on a blazer over summer clothes?

So there's really no such thing as me feeling cool nowadays (esp. since my office is actually 76 degrees rather than the 60s that it used to be) but I'll pretend for the sake of the challenge ;)

I can't say that I got very creative with this challenge but my typical go-to in this kind of circumstance is a lightweight cardigan.  What I like about this particular cardi is the lace back allows air in but the sleeves keep you warm.

Top:  Lauren by Ralph Lauren Isidro Pleated Lace Top
Cardigan:  Lauren Conrad Lace Back Cardigan
Pants:  Motherhood Maternity, Black Trousers
Necklaces:  Target Chunky Pearls + Freshwater Pearls
Shoes:  Target Mossimo Pearce Pumps
Bag:  "Charlotte" Vintage Messenger

And when it comes to going outdoors (most notably to commute back home), I just slip off the cardigan and probably roll up my pants (shh - I am just driving home after all) :)  The shell itself is a nice, lightweight stretchy cotton.

Looking forward to seeing everyone else's entries!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Shoe Reviews: Tory Burch Revas and More!

Ok, I admit it, I knew what I was getting myself into before I even bought these.  I had heard stories about TB Revas being uncomfortable or taking a long time to break in.  Given that I have relatively wide (and somewhat sensitive to pain) feet, the chances of me finding them comfy right off the bat were slim to none.  BUT they are so darn cute and were on sale!  So I decided to give it a try, telling myself that if they were unbearable, I'd just return them or try to see if anyone wanted to buy them from me.

Tory Burch Afrikan Reva Ballerina Flat in Razor Blue

They feel ok for about the first few hours of being in the office (not much walking required) but then the elastic heels dig in and the tops / sides of my pinky toes start to get squished.  :(  I've heard of the freezer trick but my freezer is jam-packed with food so I'm going to try a shoe stretcher and see how that goes.  I do absolutely love the color and general look of the shoe though!

I also got a pair of flats from Banana Republic about a week or so ago:

Banana Republic, Macrame and Leather Flats
These are so crazy comfortable!  I love them!  I don't see them online but my store had quite a few in both navy blue and orange so check your store out if you're interested.

If I could build the perfect flat, it would look like the Revas but feel like the BR flats.

And finally, the yellow Target wedges I mentioned in a previous post:

Target Xhilaration Teala Wedges, see also on Jean
These are weirdly comfortable.  Don't get me wrong, I can't walk miles and miles in them but a typical work day is fine (my office environment is mostly desk work and business casual).

Do you have any advice on breaking shoes in?  

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Sweet Pink Paisley Dress DIY - 3 ways

Another great fabric find at Joann's - this sheer pink paisley was literally calling my name so I bought all that was left (1.75 yards) and made this smocked top dress.  The smocking is so pregnancy friendly!  I wanted to be able to adjust the straps depending on how I felt so instead of 2 fixed straps, I added 4 open straps.

1.  Tied halter style with Flower Sash (tutorial for sash here)
Shoes:  Banana Republic Gladiator Wedges - BR shoes are crazy comfortable.  If you haven't already heard, there is 40% off your entire purchase tonight so make sure to check out the shoes!  

2.  Tied traditionally with bows at each shoulder
Shoes:  Frye Joy Vintage Slide
3.  Worn as skirt (shoulder straps tied as a bow at the waist)
Shoes:  Sofft Buckle Slides

Sorry, I know I could have styled the skirt look better but I was getting hot / tired.  Comes with 3rd trimester territory I think :)  How would you style this when wearing as a skirt?

Friday, July 22, 2011

J. Crew Sale Finds: 40% Off and Free Shipping

Darn all these sales, they're really killing me!  Use code LOVEIT for 40% off sale items plus free shipping on any amount.  Most items are final sale.  And don't forget to use Ebates for 1.5% cash back too!

Some super cute skirts and belts (that I may or may not have purchased - shhh, don't tell hubby):

Factory Eyelet Tiered Skirt, Bright Coral, $14.99 (orig. $69.50), buy here
Isn't this ever so purty?  I love the color and eyelet details on each tier.

Factory Bell Skirt in Cotton, Mineral Gray, $20.70 (orig. $54.50), buy here
Remember the Bell Skirt that made the rounds through the blogger community last winter?  Here's your chance to get a good deal on it.  Available in Gray and Blue.

Factory Skinny Whip Snake Belt, Bright Coral, $14.70 (orig. $26.50), buy here

Factory Metallic Webbing Belt, $5.99 (orig. $22.50) buy here

UPDATE:  Here are some great in-store finds:

Schoolboy Blazer in Summer Stripe, (I got Faded Indigo, but pictured is Carnival Blossom), Style # 42038, store price $28 (orig. $118 - not on sale online but here is the link to buy if you're interested)

Boy Shirt in Bluestone Plaid, Style #45082, store price $14 (orig. $72 - online is $36 - buy here)

Happy Shopping!  Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Talbots Super Shoe Haul and Reviews

Thanks to Gigi's post about the Talbots Secret Sale, I purchased 9 (eek) pairs of shoes.  All shoes were $29.99 and Gigi even had a 20% off code with free shipping so they were actually $24 (for leather shoes!!!!!!).

Let me start by saying that I am actually a picky shoe owner.  I have big feet (size 8.5) that tend towards being on the wider side (but don't require wearing wide sizing) and I really need all footwear to be rather comfortable.  Though sometimes I will waver on comfort if it's cute :)

On to the reviews!

Flower Bouquet Espadrilles, Natural (buy here)
I really love the flower "bouquet" details and these espadrilles are actually pretty comfy!  It's a little funny that these cream colored shoes look kind of nude against my super pale legs LOL.
Verdict:  Keep

Croc-embossed Platform Wedges, Dark Sweet Almond (buy here)
These are soooo incredibly cute!  Despite the height, it feels pretty good on my feet - the only complaint I have is that the leather is a little stiff so will hopefully soften up with wear.  I love the color and the croc-embossed details.
Verdict:  Keep

Flower Bouquet Ballet Flats, Flint Gray (buy here)
Again, I just fell in love with the floral detail here!  These are pretty comfy though they seem to run a little bigger than the other sz 8.5 shoes I ordered.  That can be easily fixed with one of those heel inserts though.
Verdict:  Keep 

Suede Chunky Heel City Sandals, Sunshine (buy here)
See them on Gigi of Gigi's Gone Shopping (leather version) and Jean of Extra Petite
I LOVE this color - it's just oh so pretty and makes me feel all happy when I see it :)  The suede is nice and soft.  Like Gigi mentioned, it seems like these are verging on being a bit too high for me but I think that's due to the pregnancy rather than the shoes themselves.
Verdict:  Keep, but wear next spring / summer

Suede Ruched Boots, Storm Grey (buy here)
Even though these have super pointy toes (which are usually indicative of painful pinching), these are actually pretty comfortable!  The only negative is that they are a tad too high and come up to the bottom of my knee.  But hey, these were originally $250 and I got them for $24 so these are keepers!
Verdict:  Keep

And now on to the shoes I'm on the fence about / not keeping.  Please excuse the flamingo poses.  Talbots wraps their shoes extremely well and I was too lazy to unpack both shoes to take pics.

Leather Bow Platforms, Black (buy here)
I wanted to love these platforms very badly because the leather is super buttery, soft but these are a little too high for me and I don't think I'd last very long in them.
Verdict:  Sadly no

Croc-embossed Peep-toe Leather Pumps, Cafe Au Lait (buy here)
I love the way these look but the leather is stiff and cuts into my foot too much for my liking.  The height also just pitches too much of my weight into the toe area creating pressure there.
Verdict:  No

Leather Chunky Heel City Sandal, Pink Desert (buy here)
I thought for sure these would be keepers after trying on the yellow suede version but again the leather is just a little too stiff for me.  Plus, I just like the yellow color more.
Verdict:  No

Croc-embossed Slingback, Chocolate (don't see it online anymore)
I also love the color and detailing of these shoes but they pinch my toes :(
Verdict:  No

Did you shop this sale?  What did you purchase and what did you think?

Monday, July 18, 2011

Then and Now: J. Crew Muse Tank

Is it stretchy and of a decent length?  Then you can wear it even in your 3rd trimester!  I'm going to try and make this a new feature for the remainder of my pregnancy.  I still very fervently believe in maximizing what you already have in your closet or purchasing items that will work for you both during and after pregnancy.  Why not save that money for something fun?  A fun new handbag perhaps?  ;)

Of course, when it comes to pants, you can't just slap a Bella Band over existing pants anymore and you will have to purchase a few maternity pants.  I recommend buying 3 basics: black trousers, khakis, and jeans.  Motherhood Maternity usually has these for about $30 each or you can check out Gap, Target, and Old Navy.  MM usually does not have a very large selection in terms of sizes in store so many times I've had to just purchase a M vs. XS or S.  This usually is ok for the 3rd trimester but in the early days of pregnancy, I just have to keep hiking my pants up (ugh).  Hence the parade of dresses / skirts you've seen on me instead.


Top:  J. Crew Muse Tank, 
Golden Topaz, XS
(see it on Vicky of Vicky's 
Daily Fashion, Annie of 
Really Petite, and Liane of 
Cardigan:  Lauren Conrad, 
Skirt:  DIY Paisley Brocade
Belt:  Banana Republic
Necklace: F21
Shoes:  Ann Taylor Perfect 
Suede Pumps, Granite

Top:  J. Crew Muse Tank,
Golden Topaz, XS
Pants:  Motherhood Maternity
Black Trousers
Necklace:  Target Chunky
Shoes:  Target Mossimo
Pearce Pumps (buy here)
Bag: "Charlotte" Vintage
Messenger (shortened
straps for
shoulder carry)

Obligatory Tummy Pose :)
(29.5 weeks pregnant)

Thanks to the blogger community, I have discovered surprisingly comfy shoes and cute accessories at Target.  These are definitely wallet friendly purchases!  Have you purchased anything there recently?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Preggy Chronicles Vol. 3: Preparations for Baby

Pregnancy check-in:

  • Gestational Time:  28 weeks - 12 more to go!  (Only 8 more until maternity leave - woohoo!)
  • Weight Gain:  22 lbs (I may have to be stricter with my diabetic diet bc I only gained 19 lbs total with our son)
  • Added Inches: +11 at the tummy, + 6 at the "waist"
  • Current Cravings:  Chicken Salad with Buffalo Sauce, Tamales, Carne Asada, Fried Pickles
Baby Names
We've actually had a baby girl name in mind since my first pregnancy and I think we are sticking to it.  When asked, we have a tendency to just say we don't have a name yet.  Hubby had a friend who wanted to name her baby "Savannah" and a well-meaning(?) person informed her that was the name of a porn star.  In order to prevent our bubble from being busted, we'll just stay tight-lipped until her arrival.  

A Chinese middle name was much more difficult to think of.  Both hubby and I immigrated to the US as infants so while familiar with Cantonese, are not what you would call proficient.  We've been bumbling around for the longest time but then came across this nifty website which allows you to input the English name, gender, date of birth, and desired meaning.  We chose one that means kindness and intelligence.  Mom thinks the characters are a bit funny for a girl but eh, what are you going to do?

Baby Purchases
  • Coming Home Outfit:  Ruffles on the tush!  The one I ordered is actually pale pink with just one polo figure at the chest, but this is the only photo I could find online that showed the cute little butt ruffles

  • Nursery Decor:  We are putting this on hold until our move next spring / summer but I'm planning on a lavender room with panda bears :)  (Gorgeous Etsy offering from Designed Designer - buy here)

  • Misc. Clothes:  A bunch of little dresses, socks / tights, hair accessories :)  Plus, a little splash of Burberry doesn't hurt anyone!

    • Neutral Hand Me Downs:  I saved some Gucci sneakers and a Burberry sweater from big brother too!  After Baby Girl, I'm going to have these framed into a shadow box keepsake.  In general, I didn't want to buy TOO many designer baby items since they grow so fast but I just couldn't resist buying a few pieces for family pics and for handing down.

To all those with siblings (both hubby and I are only children), any words of wisdom for welcoming #2 / making #1 still feel special?

P.S. - I'm still a bit behind on responding / commenting, but will catch up this weekend!!  

Sunday, July 10, 2011

New Obsession: Red-Orange in 4 OOTDs

Whew, a break!  My company's fiscal year started July 1 so this past week has been incredibly hectic hence the lack of blogging / blog commenting (but I will catch up on commenting!).

Today's post highlights my favorite new set of  accessories: Amrita Singh Water Mill Necklace in Coral (buy here), H&M Braided Belt in Red-Orange, & F21 Coral Cuff and how I've been pairing them with absolutely EVERYTHING.  Do you ever wear a favorite item / items to death?

See this double loop knot?  It's my favorite new belting technique using Kileen's tutorial here.
Bag:  Rebecca Minkoff Nikki

Here's how I've worn it:

H&M Maxi Dress, Sz 4,
$20 (in stores now,
Cut excess hem
to add flutter sleeves)
H&M Black Maxi Skirt,
XS, $10 (in stores now)
Wearing this skirt as a
dress as inspired by the
ever-stylish Ping
Old Navy White 
Maxi Dress, XS (old)
DIY Nautical Stripes

Do you like this nifty little table?  Take a look at Cee's tutorial to make your own :)

Monday, July 4, 2011

No Sew Tutorial: Make a Neckline More Modest

As you may already know, I am a HUGE fan of maxi dresses but I find many of them to be a bit too revealing in the bust area - especially ones with a sweetheart neckline.  If I don't have to, I prefer not to have to do any major overhauls on my purchases (though hemming is always a must for shorties like me).  Here's a super easy and fast fix without any sewing needed.  All you need is a scarf!

Dress:  Old Navy Tiered Maxi Dress (old)
Scarf:  The Limited, $5 (didn't see online, but should be in stores)

What You'll Need:

  • Dress / Top 
  • Coordinating Scarf - the long, rectangular ones work best 

Step 1:  Slide your scarf behind the shoulder straps against your skin and center.  My dress conveniently had a loop here that added extra security.  You can either use a safety pin to secure or leave as is.

Step 2:  Take one end and thread it upwards at the middle of the bust.  Do the same thing with the other end.

(It will then look like this)

Step 3:  Now grab an end again and thread up through the opposite side.  Repeat with other end.

(Looks like this)

Step 4:  Take one end and wrap the shoulder straps with the scarf.  Take any excess and tuck into the back.  Repeat for the other side.

And you're done!  You should wind up with a pretzel-esque neckline :)

What do you think?  Would you try this?


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