Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Jumping for Jill (See Jane Praise)

Leave it to Jill Stuart to create the perfect dress.  Always simple, yet whimsical and sultry, yet subtle.  Whether it be the perfect sweetheart neckline or the tiniest of spaghetti straps, you can tell she truly knows how to dress a woman's body.  Her dresses exude femininity without being too frilly. 

Behold, the power of the modern dress:

Would you wear any of these dresses?

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Wedding Wear (See Jane Blush)

I hear so many people groan at the number of weddings they have to attend during the summer.  Why all the whining, people?  Weddings are the best!  I am just getting to the age where people are slowly starting to pair off, so my summers are still quite free of nuptial bliss.  Perhaps I'm still feeling the love from the weekend, but I can't wait for more.

I was planning on wearing a black dress, but once I got to perusing, I decided that anything but black would be infinitely better.  I ultimately chose the Anthropologie Susannah dress, because of it's pretty neutral color (and also because of the price tag).  I also ended up getting the J Crew Candace sandals, which were surprisingly comfortable and perfect for dancing.  Here's a peek of my night, from start to finish.

About to leave...

Me with a drink, him with candy (typical).

Sweaty and tired.  Time to go home.

*Lauren Merkin clutch pictured

Do you like going to weddings?

Monday, June 28, 2010

Welcome Back (See Jane With Open Arms)

This past weekend was chock full activities for me and all I can muster out to say is that I'm exhausted.  I felt as if I really accomplished a lot and can easily say it was a great weekend.

Because I feel so brain-dead right now, I will bullet out some one word descriptions of what I did this weekend:

  • Wedding
  • Dinners
  • Bars
  • Dancing
  • Summer Ale
  • Strawberry Shortcake
  • Sewing
  • Shopping
  • Walmart (yep)

How was your weekend?

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Summer Lovin' (See Jane Like)

I realize that we're knee deep into summer by now, but that won't stop me from ogling over Spring 2010 collections.  Cynthia Steffe's S/S 2010 line screams summer and lucky for us that most of her dresses are under $300 (see Bloomingdales website).

The best part?  Most of this stuff will be on sale soon and you can definitely wear it straight into September.

Are you a fan?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Penny Pincher (See Jane Recreate)

As soon as I saw this photo of Cameron Diaz promoting her new movie on Good Morning America, I knew that outfit had to be mine.  The quintessential summer outfit:  short shorts, light blazer, nude heels/wedges.  I have recently dropped too much money on house things and need to reel in the spending.  That won't stop me from getting this outfit, though!

Basically, I need the blazer and shorts.  I have a white tank (so do you) and a pair of shoes that I can wear--either my Dolca Vita Pela Wedges (seen here) or the J Crew Candace Heels I just bought (seen here).  I also have a similar necklace from Urban Outfitters (this would be cute, too).

Free People Pleated Linen Shorts
For $29, you can hire someone to roll them up, a la Miss Cameron

Aqua Chambray Blazer
I would buy it a bit smaller than what the model's wearing to get the same Cameron effect.

And there you have it.  I'm guessing most of you have similar pieces in your closet and can easily create Cameron's morning talk show look.  I just did it for a little over $100.  Are you a fan?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Here, Here (See Jane Toast)

Yesterday was officially the first day of summer.  I don't know about you, but it had already been summer in my mind as soon as the temperatures hovered around 80 degrees.   Sometimes I get anticipatory thoughts and think that July means that summer is basically over...not this year.  The summer solstice has made me think optimistically and realize that we have many more months of sandals, sundresses, and SPF 45.

Cheers to summer!

*my nephews Jack and William when they came to visit me in Chicago last week

Remember when you were a kid and all you wanted to do was eat ice cream after a long day of swimming with your friends?

What was your favorite summer activity growing up?

Monday, June 21, 2010

Oh, This Old Thing? (See Jane Restore)

I have recently become a fan of "DIY" projects.  I've had some extra time at home, which has been a nice break from my usual work travel schedule.  Now, please note that I have no previous experience in painting, DIY projects, or restoration.  The moral of the story is:  if I can do it, you can do it. 

I had a table that I bought at Goodwill for a few dollars that would make a nice entryway table (i.e. dumping ground for mail and keys), but it wasn't in the best shape.  I hid it away for the past year and when I moved in with my boyfriend we realized we had few furniture options.  I busted this ol' thing out and decided it was time to put the underused table into actual use.  The table is still fragile and wobbly, but I never claimed to have carpentry skills.

Before:  Shabby, but certainly not chic.
After:  Post sanding, primer, and a few coats of semi-gloss black paint et voilà!  

What really made this entryway table vignette pop is the black mirror positioned over top.  I had bought this mirror last year and thought it would be perfect over my newly renovated table.  Topped with a lightly chipped white bowl that I bought at a garage sale last year for some change, I think my entry way area is looking up!

Outtakes:  A few more for effect.

Have you ever given old furniture a makeover?

Friday, June 18, 2010

Last Resort (See Jane Wash Ashore)

If you're anything like me, you fawned over Closet Fashionista's post yesterday featuring Phillip Lim's 2010 Resort Collection.  Sure, it debuted back in 2009, but that's all the more reason to sing praises of Mr. Lim's relevance in the fashion industry.  He has a gift of making basic pieces (that are most likely already sitting in your closet) look new again.  The 2010 Resort Collection is fresh, modern and full of wearable separates that you'll be wearing for seasons to come.

 A few things we can learn from this collection:
  1. Lace on lace is possible without looking like a doily.
  2. A simple, white dress should be, hands down, one of the most important purchases of the summer.
  3. You can wear a cropped shirt without looking like Kelly Kapowski (just as long as you wear high-waisted bottoms).
  4. Caramel-colored leather jackets are also warm weather-friendly.
  5. Lastly, only Rachel Bilson can pull off a gold lamé shorts-suit.

Have a fantastic weekend! 

Thursday, June 17, 2010

A House is Not a Home (See Jane Furnish)

I am anxiously awaiting the delivery of some long overdue furniture today, so in honor of this epic event, I'm posting pictures of rooms that have inspired me in my own furniture search.  If you're ever in a decorating rut and dying for inspiration (like I always am...decorating isn't my strong suit, to say the least), I suggest you check out the following sites:

*all photos via decorpad

Where do you go for home decor inspiration?

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Band on the Run (See Jane Jam)

I love into music.  I come from a family who celebrates music in different ways (ex: dad plays guitar and was in a band, mom sang and danced to the rolling stones around the kitchen, etc), so this art has always been encouraged.  That's not to say I've always agreed with my family (or they've agreed with me) in my choice of tunes.  I received my fair share of mocking for liking the Backstreet Boys and Spice Girls in 6th grade from my siblings and my dad detested the band Incubus and forbade me to listen to them in 9th grade.  Later in high school, I would head up to Detroit for concerts, much to my parent's dismay.  Now, at the ripe old age of 25, I can appreciate these experiences that took place during my formative years and say they helped shape the music I listen to today.

Here are some new bands that I've been enjoying:

Local Natives  
Do you like Arcade Fire?  They remind me of a toned-down, folksy version.
Listen:  Wide Eyes

Two-Door Cinema Club
Reminiscent of an early Phoenix, circa Alphabetical.

Julian Casablancas
While I am no stranger to Julian C (was obsessed with the Strokes in high school), I am definitely digging his solo work.  I also enjoy Albert Hammond Jr's (Strokes guitarist) solo album, too.
Listen:   Out of the Blue

Also be sure to check out Hockey, The Walkmen, Avi Buffalo, Marina + the Diamonds and Miike Snow.

What are you listening to right now?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Ankle Biters (See Jane Flatter)

With summer now in full force, I'm hiking up the hemlines and letting my legs feel the warm breeze.  Sometimes I get a little self-conscience of ol' gams, but one thing that always makes me feel better is a heel with an ankle-strap.  Thus, I'm on the hunt of a pair of nude, ankle-strap sandals for the summer.  I already have a wide array of nude shoes (i.e. heels, wedges, flats), but I am dying for some that tie around the ankle because I feel they just make my legs look better. 

Pedro Garcia Jessie Sandals

J Crew Candace Platform Heels

Stuart Weitzman Hiway Sandals

And shouldn't we all wear what makes us feel good?

Monday, June 14, 2010

Five (See Jane Tagged)

My friend, Carrie, over at This Free Bird tagged me for this questionnaire I like to call "Five."  I'll take a break from my normal shopping and styling posts to answer a few questions...

Where were you five years ago?

I had just finished my sophomore year of college and was living in Los Angeles (Bel-Aire) while working as a nanny with my friend Caitlin.  Have you ever nannied?  Two words:  birth control.  

It was a great experience in some ways though, because I saved all the money I earned which contributed to my semester abroad in Europe.

Where would you like to be five years from now? 

I'd like to be living in NYC and writing for a living.  Truth be told, I was a finance major in college. While it has provided some great opportunities for me and I do enjoy my current job (honest), I wholeheartedly love to write and hope to do it full-time some day.  

What is on your to do list today? 
- Schedule a dentist appointment. 
- Finish painting a small entry-way table. 
- Organize my toiletries/makeup (it's horrifying how much I have) 
- Laundry after work 
- Schedule hair appointment (after seeing some pictures of myself this weekend, I realize I'm long overdue for a trim)   

What five snacks do you enjoy?

- Chips + Guacamole
- Kette potato chips 
- Almonds
- Belgain-style fries
- Dark chocolate (the only non-salty snack I crave)

I pass this memo on the following intriguing blogs: 

And I ask all of you:  where do you think you'll be in five years time?

Friday, June 11, 2010

Casual Friday - Summer Edition (See Jane Dress Down)

Casual Fridays are the best thing to happen to the corporate world since Xerox machines (see my sing praises of this phenomenon here).  What could make this fantastic Friday even better?  Summer months.  That means white jeans and gladiators.

A version of my casual, summer Friday:

*clockwise from top left
  1. Burberry Mid-rise Skinny Jeans - White jeans are a must in the summer.
  2. Anthropologie Breeze Along Cami - Conservative enough for any office.
  3. Steve Madden Kasidy - Casual fridays mean open-toed shoes, to me.
  4. Old Navy Roll-up Cotton Slub Cardigan - Because offices tend to get chilly.
  5. Hammered Yellow Gold Cuff - The icing on the cake.

Enjoy your weekend, everyone!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Street Smart (See Jane Gawk)

I love looking at what everyday people wear when doing everyday things.  We all know that editorial spreads are beautiful and provide some much needed inspiration into our humdrum lives, but sometimes it's hard to remember that it's purely for fantasy and that it is make-believe.

Enter: street style.  A phenomenon made popular by The Sartorialist, Scott Schuman, it seems that everybody is trying to capitalize on the simplest of concepts--taking photos of what people wear in their daily lives.  I can easily say that street style inspires me more than what I see in magazines.  I've even been snapped myself (please note that I look like a hot's shameful) by StyleCaster.





Do you take heed of other people's outfits on the street?

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Going to the Chapel... (See Jane Say Yes to the Dress)

I have a wedding to attend in about two weeks and am thinking it's a great opportunity to buy a new dress.  Yes, I have options hanging in my closet, but as I leaf through them, all I can do is shrug and think, 'meh.'  I have plenty of lightweight, summery, cotton dresses that are a bit too casual and most of my dressier options are LBDs.  While I love all that is black, I'm wistfully yearning for a pretty dress that begs to be dressed up rather than dressed down.

1. Rebecca Taylor Puma Dress - A great alternative to the LBD.
2. DVF Ninel Dress - This is everything I'm looking for in a summer wedding dress - I just need to find my size.
3. Anthropologie Susannah Dress - I'll admit, I saw a friend wear this to a wedding, so my idea is totally stolen.
4. Rachel Gilbert Nakita Silk Mini Dress - Out of my price range, but I'm more than in love.
5. Stella McCartney Floral Dress - Speaking of dresses out of my price range....dare to dream.

Can you please help me choose a dress or shoot me some ideas?

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Duvet Decisions (See Jane Decide)

As you may know, I've spent the last week adjusting in ma maison nouveau.  I still feel like I have heaps to do in terms of unpacking (hey, I've got a job) and organizing.  Don't even get me started on decorating and essential furniture pieces--let's just say we have minimal seating at the moment. 

Finishing up the bedroom is important to me.  Often times, it's the last room people touch because it's so easy to shut the door and not let anyone inside.  Therfore, I want to get my bedroom fully decorated as soon as possible.  I already have the headboard (seen here), we're waiting on our dresser to be delivered, and I've been re-doing some nightstands that I'll feature later this week.  Basically, I saved the best for last:  the bedding!

I am seriously in love with this:

Serena and Lily Border Frame Duvet in Bark


Simple, classic, neutral.  It would look great with our dark bedroom furniture.  At $219, I was a tad reluctant but ready to pull the trigger, until I found:

Pottery Barn Grant Embroidered Duvet Cover

Same classic lines and simple design, and at $79, it's less than half the price.  (I also am considering the deep espresso color, as well, to appease the boyfriend.)  With those savings, I could afford some really fantastic pillows!

Which duvet would you pick?

Monday, June 7, 2010

Closet Envy (See Jane Pine)

As I've been organizing my own closet this past week due to the move, I've been taking extra notice of other people's closets.  Whether it be a celebrity letting the public into their world via a magazine feature or peering into a friend's closet, a closet can be a gateway into one's inner most intricacies.  Naturally, I love to see what people have inside their closet but mostly, it's interesting to see how people display their goods.

Jane Aldridge from Sea of Shoes

Designer Alice Temperley

J Crew's Jenna Lyons

Do you have closet envy?

Friday, June 4, 2010

Style Maven (See Jane Find an Obscure Icon)

Who was cooler than Sloane Peterson in 1986?  Well, I'll give you a wasn't me as I was barely a toddler.  I might have missed the release of Ferris Bueller's Day Off, I definitely made up for lost time by watching it repeatedly as I got older.  The crazy stunts they pulled were hilarious, Ferris was too cute, and Sloane was a totally righteous babe who inspired girls across the nation.  Slouchy boots, crossbody bag and a  fringe jacket?  Sounds like present-day to me.  What would Sloane be rocking in summer 2010?

*clockwise from top left

  1. Smythe Bellows Linen Blazer - Leather fringe is a little heavy for Chicago summer.  I think Sloane would opt for a breezy, linen blazer.
  2. Forever 21 Wide Braided Belt - Something has to hold up those baggy shorts.
  3. Rebecca Minkoff MAB Clutch - I just got this bag in chocolate and feel oh-so-very Sloane when I'm trotting around Chicago with it in tow.
  4. DVF Taipa Shorts - A sleeker version of Sloane's extra-wide postman shorts.

Channeling Sloane's taste in sunglasses wouldn't be hard these days seeing as everyone has a pair of Wayfarers to call their own.  Maybe she'd like the Ray Ban Skinny Retro Cats I just bought?

I thought long and hard about what shoes Sloane would wear in summer '10 and honestly think it should be left up to imagination.  Seeing as it's summer and school is out, she would definitely not be wearing her signature slouchy boots as Chicago gets quite hot and muggy this time of year.  I think it'd definitely be some sort of sandal.

What shoes do you think Sloane would wear in the summer?

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Silky Drawers (See Jane Show Some Leg)

I'm in the mood for some silky shorts this weekend.  Why silky shorts, you ask?  Because they're oh-so-versatile.  Dress them up with platform heels and a blazer for a night out or pair them with a loose, pocket tank and gladiators for day.  Here are some of my top picks:

Now this is what I meant what I said dressed up shorts.

If you don't have the guts to wear these in public, they'd be cute in bed, too!

How cute would these be with a jean jacket?

Leave it to J Crew to make burnt orange, silk shorts look fantastic.

I see myself wearing some of these straight into the fall (paired with tights, of course).  I'm pretty sure I wore the tights/culottes combination in first and second grade, too.

Will you be wearing silky shorts this fall?

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Moving Day Part II (See Jane Uproot)

My boyfriend and I finally moved into my our apartment last night and I can barely keep my eyes open.  I have mounds upon mounds of boxes at home, just waiting to be unpacked.  Needless to say, my postings will be sparse this week (and I won't have internet until Thursday).  However, I cannot wait to show some pictures of my the new pad!  I think there are a few 'before & after' photo-ops to be had...

Until then...