Thursday, December 30, 2010

Back to LOFT: Combinable Coupon + 50% Off

So after seeing on LOFT's FB page that the direct mailer coupon ($20 off $75 purchase or $50 off $150) was combinable with the 50% off entire store promo, I had to go back and get a few things.  :)  Prices noted reflect the $20 off $75 and 50% off.

So even though I was on the fence about this initially, I decided to get it after trying it with my blazer.  The price of $15 also helped :)
Verdict: Buy

Twist Front Short Sleeve Top, Dark Grey, XS, $17
I love the twist detail and the slim shape of this short sleeved sweater.  
Verdict: Buy

Deep Cowl Neck Shell, Warm Orchid, XS, $15
I got this in Navy Blue the other day and liked it so much that I went back for this fuchsia-y color.
Verdict: Buy

Rosette Cami Halter, XS, $22
With the coupon on top of the promo, this was a no-brainer purchase.
Verdict: Buy

Items that didn't work out:
This looked cute on the hanger but not on me.  
Verdict: No

 Cute details but just doesn't work on my body - it makes me look pregnant from the side?
Verdict: Clear no

Also went to Ann Taylor and picked up a couple of final sale items - a pair of gray trousers for $12 and a raspberry-colored cardigan for $12.  I'm thinking of adding some embellishments to the cardi and the trousers will be good for work.  Good deals all around today!

Anyone taking advantage of the flurry of sales going on?

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Another Bow Blouse DIY + OOTD Options

I'm one of those people who will buy multiples of the same item just to get different colors.  It's no different when it comes to DIY garments.  I LOVE bow-front tops and I can't seem to get enough of them.  I feel like they have dual functionality as a stand-alone type top or layered beneath a cardi / blazer / sweater.  They can also be dressed up or down.

Today's version was a print I fell in love with at the local Joann's.  It happened to be a shiny charmeuse type of fabric (and I have to say that I'm not always a fan of wearing something shiny - just seems to show imperfections) so I wound up using the "wrong" side of the fabric for more of a matte look.

Bow Front Blouse, DIY
Black Pencil Skirt, DIY
Ann Taylor Perfect Suede Pumps, Granite
Oops, I forgot to put on my snake print belt in gray!

Or a more casual alternative with a sweater and jeans:
Would pairing a necklace with this be too much?  I feel like it's missing something...

Is there a type of blouse that you just can't get enough of?

Monday, December 27, 2010

50% LOFT Sale Items: Fitting Room Reviews

No more lying in bed sick all day - I am mobile again!  The first thing I did was head to LOFT :).  Not only did they have 50% off everything (including new arrivals in store), but they also sent me a $25 savings card (not the CC reward) to use.

Without further ado, let's explore the lovely sale items (prices after 50% off).
Deep Cowl Neck Shell, Fresh Navy, XS (no petite version at my store, but available online), $20
I LOVE this top so much!  I have a weakness for cowl necks but sometimes sleeveless versions are too low-cut for me - this one is perfect!  I think wearing these with pearls would be divine.
Verdict: BUY

Michelle made this look so cute in her post!  I think it looked good on me from the front but looked a bit lumpy from the side.  BTW - I get proportionately pickier when the price goes up :)
Verdict: No, but maybe on further sale

I tried on this jacket in the fall and really liked it.  I wanted to make sure it looked good without the fur collar so it could be worn more classically.  It loses a little oomph this way but I still like it.  Since I have that $25 card, this will only be $30 - WOOHOO!  My store had a ton of sizes left even though there's only size 4 online - so check your local store if you're interested.
Verdict: BUY

Rosette Halter Cami, XS, $27 (can't find online?)
Here's another case of blogger envy LOL.  This looked gorgeous on Cee so when I saw it, I had to try it on.  This actually fit well in regular XS and the details are very cute.
Verdict: Will get on further sale (see the restraint I'm showing?  LOL)

This fit OK, but I cannot pull off the print.
Verdict: No

 Looked great on Vicky!  This fit pretty well but it was a touch see-through and I liked it but didn't love it.
Verdict: No for now

Cocoon Striped Sweater, XS
Umm, no to both.  Cocoon sweaters look so good on others like Cee, but just looks off on me.  I liked the stripes though.  The trousers were crazy baggy and unflattering.  I know trouser styles are wider legged, but usually they are fitted in the hip and butt - these were not.
Verdict: No way

So I wound up getting a coat and a cowl neck shell for $50 - not bad!  

Did you buy anything from the LOFT 50% off sale?

Sunday, December 26, 2010

DIY Flower Pin Tutorial

Hope everyone had a fabulous holiday!  Between Christmas and my ultra-slow recovery from a particularly nasty bout of food poisoning (blech!), I'm behind in posting, responding, and checking out everyone's blogs, but I'm catching up slowly!

Thankfully, I had already documented this DIY tutorial and just needed to take modeling photos (consists of me in pajama bottoms standing in front of the bathroom mirror LOL) / organize the post.  Flower pins / embellishments are cropping up again (the last I remember was from the Sex and the City days when Carrie sported one) and can be seen on Kerry, Really Petite, and PetiteXXS.  Since I never know what to do with scrap fabric from past projects, I tried my hand at making a few flower pins.

You can see the details of it in the fuchsia version, but I'm not yet sure how I feel about the fray.  I do like the fray in the boucle version though.

See tutorial after the jump:

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Massive Shopping Post & Reviews - J. Crew, H&M, & More!

Were you expecting LOFT to be in this list?  LOL, I think this is my first shopping / fitting room review post WITHOUT an appearance at LOFT.  :)

First, J. Crew reviews.  Like the rest of blogger community, I hit J. Crew's extra 30% off sale online after seeing it posted by Elle and was very excited when I got my shipment several days later.

This cardigan is making the rounds in the petite community (I believe Vicky, Elle, PAG, Really Petite and Alterations Needed have reviews thus far - let me know if I missed you and I'll add the link).  As Elle noted, the cardigan has weirdly tight sleeves but a loose torso.  I wore it under a blazer the other day but will also be trying it per PAG's suggestions for future occasions.  I love the color of this and despite the fit issues, I'm going to keep it.  I also ordered Weathered Wood but returned it because I was hoping for more a rust color and mine looked very brown.  After looking PAG and AN's posts, I'm thinking maybe I judged it too harshly from bad lighting.  Oh well, better for my wallet!
Verdict: Keep

Darla Ruffle Cami, Charcoal, Sz 0, $14 (orig. $88)
I love the silk material and ruffle detail.  It's a tad low-cut and big in the torso (particularly from the side), but silk for $14 is a good deal and the 2 cons aren't deal-breakers.
Verdict: Keep

Always Pocket Cardigan, Heather Dove, XXS, $17.50 (orig. $39.50)
I HEART this cardigan!  It's super soft  and it fits so well though the arms are a tad tight again.  Maybe my arms are just big for my body?  I'm going to use this as a basis for my future cardigan DIYs.
Verdict: Keep!
Pleated Flutter Shell, Gossamer Peach, XS, $14 (orig. $39.50)
Another super soft tank with a silk-trim placket.  It's a teeny bit loose but has a slim silhouette which is my primary concern.
Verdict: Keep

Muse Tank, Golden Topaz, XS, $21 (orig. $59.50)
I originally saw this on Vicky and absolutely loved it (PetiteXXS also reviewed this in Gray).  It does NOT look as good on me.  I like the color a lot but I'm not sure if this is a keeper.
Verdict: Undecided, what do you think?

Now on to the mall where I headed to H&M.
Gray Cowl Neck Sweater, XS, $15
How many gray cowl neck sweaters could a gal really wear (I bought this one at LOFT)?  Ordinarily, I wouldn't have bothered but the material was just super soft and I loved how this looked boat neck style (thanks PAG for the idea!).  Plus, it was only $15!
Verdict: Buy

Bird Print Blouse, Sz 4, $17.50
I love the whimsical bird print.  It's a tad short to wear with low-slung pants but I think it'd be perfect with a skirt.
Verdict: Buy

Next, after seeing Really Petite, Cee, and Elle review Express outerwear, I decided to go check it out myself.
I thought the fit was pretty good but I just didn't love it.  I don't think I can pull it off.
Verdict: No - wish they had it in Camel!

There was a brief instant wherein I thought I could pull this off.  But I definitely can't - I'll leave the leather jacket style to Really Petite :)  It fit well though!
Verdict: No

This looked very cute on the model but not so much on me.  It was a little bigger than I expected it to be.
Verdict: No

Ah, the famous coat seen on Cee and Elle (see links above)!  I had high hopes for this and the waist fit well but I just don't have enough substance in the chest area to fill it out so it looks a little floppy there.
Verdict: No

Phew!  That was a lot of shopping!  I must seem crazy but I will be cleaning out the closet for Goodwill donations.

And, just to put you in a festive spirit, here's my (failed) attempt at a gingerbread house.  I'll do better next year!  :)

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Sewing Challenge: Celeb-Inspired Dress DIY

Ever since I saw Zoe Saldana wear this MaxMara dress, I've been itching to re-create my own version.  I looked for a cream colored fabric that wasn't see-through but to no avail.  So I went the opposite route for a black dress and cream sash.  I also think any kind of colorful semi-wide belt would look good with it.

I absolutely love the drama of the neck collar and the contrasting sash color.  Hubby remarked, "That looks a bit much.  Are you going to wear it to the office?"  So yes, I admit, it's a little dressier than what I would normally wear.  But I think you can always make it more casual with a cardigan.  Accessorizing makes all the difference too.

Here's what it looks like on me (I, of course, lengthened the skirt from Zoe's version):

Left: Collar up for max drama (my favorite way)
Right: Collar down for more of a conservative vibe

What do you think?  Does this inspired piece capture the gist of the Zoe's dress?

And an award (my first!) from the fabulous Elaine from Curls-and-Pearls.  I am so incredibly flattered and don't feel at all that I'm very stylish (but I'm learning LOL) - thank you Elaine!  You are so sweet!!

I'd like to pass this award on to:
  • Kerry of Little Nashua - She makes the most gorgeous garments (and perfect-fitting!) and has an incredible eye for picking out items to flatter her figure.  
  • Cee of To Brighten My Day - Cee has impeccable taste and a flair for accessorizing / styling things to make everything look chic and polished.  I would love to pick up some of that skill!
  • Ping of All About Fashion Stuff - This gal NEVER looks bad!  She always looks amazing and is uber-fashionable.  Even when she's reviewing items that don't fit well, she still winds up gorgeous.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Miss Sixty Outerwear Review

Typically, department stores are not the best place for petites to shop for outerwear.  The smallest sizes are usually 4s that are cut too generously.  But then, I found an exception - Miss Sixty.  I would say this brand fits mostly true to size.  In the vanity sizing world, I wear XSP/XS (sometimes XXSP) but the coats below are size S and fit really well.  In fact, I couldn't even button the XS sizes (blushes).

 I really love the double-breasted, belted style with zipper detail - I feel like it really cinches in the waist for a flattering silhouette.  Another great detail is a zip-up vest sewn into the jacket for extra warmth.

This Gray version is very similar to the black but does not have the belt.  I feel like it still fits well but isn't as flattering.  I think this may have to go back to the store - what do you think?  Keep or return?

Monday, December 13, 2010

Jersey Cardi DIY + Bright Colors OOTD

I have been pining for something in a mustard yellow ever since I saw PAG modeling it in a Gap moto-styled cardigan, Kileen here, and Curls-And-Pearls here.  I couldn't really find anything right in the stores so when I saw a mustard jersey fabric at Hancock, I decided to try and make my own cardi.

This was actually pretty easy - there were only 3 pieces to cut out (front, back, and sleeves)!  Modifications included slimming of the sleeves and lengthening them since they were meant to be 3/4 length.  I used McCall's M5890.

I tried wearing the cardi 2 ways and I think I prefer the Left except maybe with the belt from the Right.  What do you think?

Top: BR Navy and White Striped Tee, XS
Cardigan: DIY Mustard Jersey
Necklace: DIY Flower Bib 
Belt: Gap Floral Print
Jeans: LOFT Boot Cut Jeans, 4P
Fuchsia Wedges: Gucci

Top: Martin + Osa Silk Print Racerback
Belt: Old Navy
Jeans: Abercrombie Kids, 14 (another oldie)

I've been wanting to try yellow and fuchsia together after seeing this Moody Leaves Ruffle Shell on the LOFT website (not available at my stores):

Isn't it gorgeous??  Unfortunately, the smallest size in this color is a regular small and I know that will be too big :(  What do you think of 2 bright colors together?

Saturday, December 11, 2010

$12 LOFT Deals & Other Finds

Ok, so I've been talking a lot about shopping restraint but not doing a very good job of it.  I had originally planned to live vicariously through Really Petite's shopping...but since they had a special promo price on the Cowl Neck Sweater reviewed here ($25), I thought I might just go and get that ONE item.  Alas, it just wasn't meant to be - the deals were too great to ignore.  Sigh.  Oh well, I can always try and make shopping restraint a New Year's resolution :)

As always, first is today's outfit:

You know how I love my purples!
Cardi: LOFT Long V-Neck Cardi, XS
Necklace: DIY Pearl/Ribbon Twisted Necklace
Belt: The Limited Purple Snake Print, One Size (I looovve these belts!)
Pants: BR Gray Pinstripe Trousers

LOFT Cropped Tweed Jacket, XXSP, $12 (orig. $129, see here on Elle and here on PAG)
LOFT Bootcut Jeans, 4P, $12 (orig. $59)
Sooo, as noted by PAG, the tweed jacket is a bit boxy from the front.  Weirdly, it looks relatively slim from the side.  I've found that LOFT petite denim fits very well to my proportions.  It's slim in the thighs and hips with a good inseam length.  I don't love the whisker-effect but I do like the medium blue color.
Verdict: $12 deals - of course I'm going to buy both!

Black Moto Jacket, 0, $24 (orig. $128)
This fit well and I liked the way it looked from the front and side.
Verdict: Yes

This fit well but I felt like it was too long bc I don't wear very many tunic-styled tops.  For whatever it's worth, it looks like a normal length on the LOFT model so maybe it looks good on taller gals.
Verdict: No

V-Neck Shell with Draped Bow, XXSP, $12
This top looks FABULOUS on Really Petite but not so much on me.
Verdict: No

So for $50 (I had a $20 Rewards Card), I got the Cowlneck Sweater, a Tweed Jacket, Jeans, and a Moto Jacket.  Not bad, right?

Has anyone else been succumbing to the sales?  :)


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