Monthly Archives: May 2012

Memorial Weekend sales list!

Three cheers for long weekends, the start of summer, and new additions to your closet. Here’s a list of just a sample of the sales that are happening over the next few days.

And *please* take time to remember what this holiday is truly about.

Elevated Style

Fashion has gotten expensive. This isn’t exactly news, but it sometimes still blows my mind how much things cost – $900 for a tee-shirt? $500 for a pair of flats? In this day, when one item in your outfit can cost almost as much as a month of rent, more and more companies that were once viewed as less-than-trendy are designing products that are affordable and stylish. Here are a couple to check out:

1. Birkenstock – Once known for simple 2-strap sandals, this company has grown to make some of the cutest and most comfortable sandals. I’ve had 2 fun pairs for a few years now and STILL get compliments. People are always surprised to find out that my metallic silver toe-wrap sandals or my t-strap black patent sandals are made by Birkenstock. They also have many veg-friendly options! (All options below found here and here.)

2. Land’s End. The source of many grade school backpacks and plain turtlenecks has developed a younger, more stylish line called Canvas. They have many cute options including fun dresses and comfy chambray shirts!

Where have you found affordable, stylish pieces?

Summer Style: The Beach Tunic

With Memorial Day just around the corner, I find myself constantly browsing pages and pages of cute new bathing suits and cover ups. I have gone on many beach vacations throughout my life and recently went through some of my old swimwear (some of which was probably was still from high school and well past its expiration date). Therefore, I’m in need of some new suits and cover ups. I love the look of a light tunic that you can pair with a bottom or wear solo. I have been lusting after the Tory Burch tunic for quite some time but unfortunately don’t feel like my current budget can allocate to a $300 cover up (but hopefully someday!). In the mean time, I’ve found some more wallet-friendly alternatives. Wear these on their own to the beach or pool and then throw on some cut-off shorts and strappy sandals when grabbing a bite to eat.

  1. J.Crew Whisper Gauze Beachcomber Tunic
  2. Billabong Fringe Beach Cover-Up
  3. Madewell Lowtide Tunic
  4. J.Crew Feather Paisley Tunic
  5. The Webster for Target Cotton Jacquard Tunic

What’s your favorite type of beach cover up?

On the Road

Many of my colleagues travel a lot (I’m relatively new to my job and will hopefully be jet setting soon!), all over the world throughout the year. This requires a lot of careful planning. With many tight travel regulations (ahem, 3 oz. liquids), it pushes us all to be organized, thoughtful globetrotters.

While I haven’t traveled much for my job, I have traveled since before I can even remember. I’ve been fortunate enough to have taken all sorts of trips, everything from the short drive to Toronto from my home town, to 24 hours+ trips to Africa. There are a number of items and tips that I have:

1. First of all, make yourself comfortable. I usually have an eye mask, blanket and neck pillow (the ones airplanes give out aren’t nearly as soft and comfy as I’d like), and cozy socks since planes are usually chilly.

Cute sleep mask $22

Socks $5

Blanket (this has foot pockets!) $19.99 (on sale!)

2. Make sure that if you’re not checking a bag, all your liquids are the proper size. Many of the go-to places for toiletries have special sections on websites and in stores with mini sizes of your favorite products. Sephora has a whole section including products you wouldn’t think would need to be small (ie. mascara).

Bliss Starter Series: Fabulous $36

3. Even if you’re traveling for work, you’ll want to make sure that you document your trip. Take some time – even if it’s just an hour or 2 – to document what you see. We sometimes forget to take in what’s around us, especially when we’re on business trips and not in the true travel mindset. While I’m not advocating blowing off your work duties, I bet most of us could squeeze in some sightseeing.

Muji sketchbook $3.95

Tivoli Audio – Songbook global radio $199.99

Canon PowerShot $169

4. Traveling doesn’t have to mean sacrificing style either. So many great pieces are comfy, cute and perfect for long hours in a car or on a plane. I love leggings, slip on shoes (so easy for going through airport security!), and a wrap (to again combat that problem of chilly planes).

American Apparel Leggings (they come in SO many colors!) $28

Love Quotes scarf (also so many color choices) $88

TOMS ballet flats $74

Do you have any great travel tips?

Weekend Wear

{Top: Elizabeth and James, Jeans: True Religion, Sunnies: Ray-Ban, Shoes: TOMS, Necklaces: Lulubug Jewelry, Bag: Handmade by me}

Temperatures are really on the rise here in the District. If you’ve ever been here between May and September, you’ll know why this place is nicknamed “The Swamp.” Steamy temperatures prompt the need for loose blouses, cropped pants, and slip-on sneakers. And of course, my favorite pair of sunglasses.

Have a great weekend!

Shop for a Cause: Tory Burch Foundation

We both try to be socially conscious shoppers as best we can. There are many designers who incorporate social responsibility into their companies, which is awesome. Tory Burch started the Tory Burch Foundation in 2009 – its mission is to help provide economic opportunities to underprivileged women and their families in the United States. According to their website, studies show women have been disproportionately affected by the financial crisis and have more difficulty qualifying for loans. The foundation teamed up with ACCION USA, which provides microloans and financial services for these women to help them start their businesses. If you buy certain Tory Burch products, all of the profits benefit her foundation. Here are some great items you can buy to help support this great cause! Hurry because they go fast! (And just in time for Mother’s Day!)

  1. Saffiano Foundation Double Wrap Logo Stud Bracelet
  2. Tory Burch Foundation Sunflower Scarf
  3. Tory Burch Foundation Metallic Foldable Tote

Print Love

{Dress: Zachary’s Smile for Anthropologie, Shoes: Corso Como, Sunnies: Theory, Clutch: vintage Coach, Bracelets: Etsy/Tai/Dogeared/handmade from Africa, Cocktail ring: vintage (my grandma’s)}

I am a big fan of prints, especially for dresses. I’ve had this cute little number for a few years now and it never fails to disappoint. Comfortable (with pockets!), classic (a very flattering shape) and fun (the African print fabric makes me nostalgic for Cape Town). I like to pair it with fun accessories – great for work or going out!

Real Girl Style

Look: Work Denim

Since denim seems to be a big trend that has stuck, I wanted to find a way to incorporate the look into a work appropriate outfit. I paired black pants, a silk shell tank, with a ruffle grey denim jacket – a bit different from the traditional one, giving it a more professional feel.

{Jacket: LAmade, Pants: Banana Republic, Shell: Vince}

{Shoes: DV by Dolce Vita}

Feed Your Brain

If I could do one thing all summer, it would probably be sit outside in the sunshine (preferably on the beach!) and just read book after book. Reading has always been a great love of mine, even during busy stressful times in my life when I had plenty to read already (like graduate school). I still try to read a little bit each night before I go to sleep, as it always helps me unwind. I’ve had a Kindle for about a year now and love it, especially for commuting and traveling! I will always have a special place in my heart for physical books (you should see our bookshelves…) too.

Here are a few of the books I’ve slated for the coming months ahead:

The Beginner’s Goodbye – Anne Tyler is one of my all-time favorite writers. Her characters are varied, complex, but seem completely real. They’re usually the stories of average people facing common struggles. This one looks like it won’t disappoint.

A Natural Woman: A Memoir – I have vivid memories of singing along to “Really Rosie” with my parents in our old Woody station wagon as a kid. As I got older, I moved on to loving Carole King’s classic songs and somewhat imperfect voice. I’m psyched to read this autobiography. If it’s written even half as well as her song lyrics, it’ll be a great book!

All There Is: Love Stories from StoryCorps – One of my favorite short segments on NPR, I love hearing from the real lives of people who enter the StoryCorps booths, especially the sweet love stories. The producer compiled a book of love-themed stories that will be one I’m sure I’ll go back to many times.

Mockingjay – Yes, I too have succumbed to the world of the Hunger Games. I NEVER liked books like this at all but after all the hype, I figured I’d see what all the excitement was about (and my fiance read the first one and really liked it). I breezed through the second book in about a day and now am anxious to see what happens in the final chapter.

What are you excited to read?

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