Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween

Sorry for the lack of posts, when you have a small child Halloween time is always a bit hectic, we'll be back to regularly scheduled posting tomorrow.

No matter what your plans are have fun and be safe

Monday, October 29, 2012

Quality over Quantity

It's a cliche for a reason right? Quality over Quantity. In theory it's great because it's true, buying less items for more money really is the way to go. Your things will last you so much longer and work so much better. But in practice, so hard. I personally don't have a lot of expendable money. I'm no stranger to saving up for things, but the sudden idea that I will essentially be saving up for everything is daunting. The past few years I've been guilty of some major H&M Shopping with a bit of Macys and Limited thrown in, and before that was Forever 21 (I haven't shopped there for 2 years now but that's still 2 years more than I should have, as I should have stopped at 22). But now I'm 26 and it's time to shop like a grown up.

I already know how to budget shop, properly, and I have been for some time. But I really want to start investing in my wardrobe. I've reached a point where I want to buy things I truly love and will wear for the rest of my life. This isn't to say that I plan on buying Chanel and Armani. Just that I've realized I really need to think about what I'm going to buy before I buy it, and I need to save up and wait on items rather than spending $50 at H&M on a bunch of things, I need to wait and buy maybe 2 or 3 things for $100 instead so they'll be better quality.

Being expensive doesn't necessarily mean it's a quality product. The saying "You get what you pay for" isn't as true as we'd like it to be. Sometimes you get less than what you pay for, and sometimes you get much more than what you payed for. You should always pay attention to a garments quality when shopping. If you can't see it or touch it in person you should always check the reviews online, and make sure the company has a decent return policy. Taking the time to research your items will ensure that you get the best quality for you money.

Quality over Quantity, sounds easy in theory, and I will be keeping you updated on my attempts. First attempt, I've bought 2 sweaters from Hollister instead of 3 or 4 from H&M I'm very excited.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

How to have a nice cozy sick day

 I decided to write this post because I seem to be coming down with a cold. I've got that foggy feeling in my brain, and a sore throat. I actually don't mind being sick. This is probably because I spend most of my time sick. I have a low immune system, and asthma and allergies. So I've had to learn to enjoy myself while feeling poorly or I'd spend all my time in a poor state of mind. I'm sick so often I have it down to a science people. Seriously, it may not be the best day ever, but it's not exactly horrible either. Of course, there are exceptions when your extremely, need a doctor type, sick, you're not going to have a good day, but if you're to sick for work or school, but not sick enough for a doctor, this is a pretty decent way to spend your day.

  • First of all you'll need a favorite blanket, it could be a cuddly throw you knit yourself, or bought (V.S. Pink usually has some cute ones), or whatever blanket you have that is the schnuggliest. You want to stay warm when your sick and it's better if your blanket makes you really happy. I have one that I use only when I'm sick, which I think makes it more special. 
  • You'll need your schnuggliest, coziest, cutest sweats or pajamas. Just because you're ill doesn't mean your loungewear can't be adorable, the better you look, the better you feel, and if you're feeling cute in your sweats, with your hair in a top knot or alice band, you'll feel better about yourself. And there is plenty of extremely comfortable adorable loungewear/pajamas out there. I recommend Gilly Hicks for that
  • Next you'll need a cute cup to drink water or ginger ale from. Staying hydrated is really important when your sick and it definitely helps if you're using a super cute tumbler cup. Mine is a polka dot one from Hallmark, but I really want to get one of the Elle and Blair ones from Glitzy Glam. I love the monogramming and they're really cute, especially the polka dot ones, and the stripey straws you can buy to go with them instead of the plain clear straw. 
  • I also have a special soup bowl, it's red and shaped like an over-sized mug and it says soup all the way around it. This isn't necessary, but you're favorite soup is, chicken soup is best but really whatever soup is your favorite will do. 
  • You're also going to need a good movie or a few of them. My personal sick day favorites are Breakfast at Tiffany's, Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, and Easy A. Those are all movies I've seen so many times that I can watch them while drifting in and out of sleep and I don't feel like I've missed anything. 
  • I'm also really fond of having a candle burning, usually I can't smell it so I pick a cheap one that doesn't have much scent anyways so I don't feel like I'm wasting it, but still the burning candle makes me feel cozier.
  • Before you settle in you'll need to make sure you have your cup filled to the brim, and you have tissues (I prefer puffs plus lotion because a nose in need deserves puffs indeed), chapstick, lotion, hand sanitizer (bath and body works do the best ones), and a small trashcan or bag so you don't have to keep getting up to throw away your tissues.
  • Finally you'll need an activity, I like to knit, usually something that I don't need a pattern for. If you knit you know what I mean, there are things like a simple plan scarf you don't need a pattern for because you've done the stitches so many times your hands just seem to know what to do. I also like to read, and listen to music. You want an activity that you enjoy, but one that if you fall asleep doing it or need to leave as it is so you can go to sleep it won't be ruined.
  • Then you just need to snuggle into your favorite spot, whether it's a large arm chair, the sofa, or your own bed and you're set.
Obviously, I vary how I spend the day each time I'm sick, since I'm usually ill for at least a week, but this is mostly what I do. In the winter, if I'm feeling especially poorly I'll add in a cute schnuggly scarf and mittens, even sometimes a hat, and the pajama's of boots (UGGS), and unless it's summer or really hot outside, I bundle myself like that if I have to go to the doctor. The more frivolous you are with your routine, the happier you'll be. I also have a pillow pet, a pink unicorn that I schnuggle with on especially yucky days.

Quick announcement

The first change has been made to my blog, Manabear24 is now I'm so happy with the new name. Especially since that's what this blog is about for me, Fashion and the things that make me happy. If you use the old name it'll redirect you here.

 Next we'll be working on the theme. I'm very excited for the changes that are coming and the new name. Thanks for reading! Keep checking back for the updates we're making and let me know what you think!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Blog Revamp and could Gilly Hicks be my new Victoria's Secret?

First off I'm planning on doing a revamp to my blog here soon, so there will be some changes and I'm excited for them. I haven't decided exactly everything I'm doing yet, but I'll alert you to the changes as the come.

Secondly Gilly Hicks, or GH which is a store I've loved from afar is having a sale on their sweatpants. I usually stick to Victoria's Secret for sweatpants and hoodies, but I've placed an order with Gilly Hicks today and when I get them I'll do a haul/ review for you guys either here or on my youtube. I'm kinda really excited because I have 2 hoodies and 2 pairs of pants in my cart and it came to $100, when a hoodie and pants from VS usually totals to over $100, and even at full price from GH it wouldn't come to that.

I know in my last post I said I wasn't going to randomly spend $100 here and there, well first off, I returned some shoes, so $40 of that will be back in my account soon and I've actually needed some new sweatpants for awhile so while I was going to wait a month or two to pick them up from VS in hopes they'd have a sale, but since it's a need and not entirely a want I don't see the point in waiting. I'm pretty excited about the hoodies because all of my hoodies are sort of really young since they're from VS Pink. I think I've reached an age where I'm a bit to old to wear pink in public at all, since it's aimed at high school, college age girls. Though if you told that to most of the women in my town, I'm certain they'd be offended. GH has tamed down their sexual image to appeal to a younger age range but still have maintained a more grown up feel.

Gilly Hicks is an American brand, with a British and Australian flair to it, that was launched in 2008. It's tagline is that it's Abercrombie's cheeky cousin. There's actually as story behind the brand, which while fictional is pretty neat. The story is about a young girl named Gilly Hicks in the early 1900's, she was supposedly born and raised in England, but moved to France to study fashion before settling down in 1932 in Sydney and opening an underwear shop in her family's manor. She found success and happiness making comfortable bra's to help women feel comfortable and sexy. And that smart Australian women came from all over to be fitted by her. A portrait of the "original" Gilly Hicks hangs in all the shops. (Or at least they used to)

The story is in actuality a complete load of bollocks. Though it does exactly what it was meant to do, which is create an atmosphere. Gilly Hicks was meant to be a big competitor for VS, and Aerie. I've never shopped at Aerie, the things that have caught my eye don't ever seem to be worth what they want me to pay for them. I do shop at V.S. quite a bit though and while I'm not making any judgments right now, I have been looking for a sort of replacement and am hoping this will be it. I quite like this brands style which I've read about on a few blogs written about the brand. GH is meant to have a laid back tomboy-sexy feel, which I will agree matches VS for their loungewear. I haven't looked into GH's lingerie line, but that was their big opening point when the shops first began. I do plan on giving that a look soon, and will let you know what I think.

All in all I'd say I'm very excited about the order I have placed with them, which should be here on Halloween.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

High Street Style: Fashion from across the pond

My best friend likes to tell me I was born in the wrong country, and the wrong decade. She's right though. Ideally I would have liked to been the age I am now in London in the 60's. I love Twiggy and mod style. I think it would have been a blast being a young adult in the world as it was then.

Aside for my deep love of 60's fashion, I also really love British fashion in general. Well the things that would be considered quintessentially British anyway. I love cable knit sweaters, and wellies and riding pants and boots. I absolutely adore oxfords peeking out of crew neck sweaters. You could argue that this is all just very preppy, and it is. Prep schools where the term preppy comes from started in England and as with everything else we have here in the states made it's way over. I love the very posh but slightly disheveled look. I'm also kinda in love with the English Professer Look, (English being England and not the language study) Tweedy Blazers with elbow patches, Brogues, Sweater Vests.

Some of my favorite fashion brands are British, Burberry, Mulberry, Jack Wills, Topshop, Superdry. I also am really fond of River Island, Zara, Asos and H&M. And if you branch out to cover all of the UK, Hunter my absolutely favorite brand ever is Scottish in origin but their boots are extremely popular among the British, and Kate Middleton and the Queen Mum herself have been spotted in them.

Onto Accessibility of the brands to my and to others in the States:
  • I ever realized how accessible the high street fashions might actually be to me until my husband ordered me a Superdry knit hat, that I had spotted in FleurDeForce's Christmas Gift Guide, just two weeks before Christmas and it arrived not only on time, but a week early.
  • I know H&M is pretty wide spread across the US now, and I've shopped there for a while since another one of my best friends said it was probably the best place for me to shop. And really it is, I'm in peter pan color heaven in there. 
  • Then Topshop came to the states. Okay they've been in the states for a while,with a few brick and mortar stores in NY Chicago and I believe LA, but with their new Nordstrom partnership, they are much more accessible to everyone here now.
  • Asos sells River Island and both Asos and Zara ship to the states, and I'm pretty sure there is even a few Zara's in the US I just don't know where they are. 
  • The final place on my dream shopping list is Jack Wills, I love their Jumpers (Sweaters if you did know before), and I love their Hoodies and Track Bottoms, but I didn't know that their shipping is guaranteed 2-5 business days whether your in the UK or America. This is quite possibly the best news I've had EVER.

The only issue is that aside from Asos and H&M the clothing is actually quite expensive with the conversion from GBP to USD. I have seen plenty of reviews though as I'm obsessed with UK vloggers (another post on that I promise, and it seems that with the exceptions of Asos and Topshop, which can be hit and miss, the quality is quite good for your money. Those are chance I'm willing to take, since when ordering anything online I check the reviews and won't usually order something that doesn't have any reviews, unless I have fallen completely in love with it.

I'm not the only one who loves British fashions, Taylor Swift has been pictured in a few different Topshop items, two coats and a dress at least. and I know Selena Gomez has done some shopping damage at Topshop when she's been in the UK. There are several other stars that seem to be in love with British fashion as much as I am, there are too many to name really.

So my goal, instead of ordering $100 of clothing from Loft or The Limited, will be saving that money for the things I really want. I'm mostly interested in the more classic pieces like cable knit jumpers and peter pan collared tops. I also think their graphic tees and tops are awesome for more casual days, and their accessories are really cool because they're different than what you can find here. I know you can find some of the classic pieces in the states. If I do, I will be more than happy to spend my money here, but if I can't then there is some fun in saying "I got it from England" even if I've never been.

When I do finally make some purchases from UK retailers I will haul them here. Promise, Promise.

How do you feel about overseas fashions? Do you have a country who's stereotypical fashion you adore? The French and their Benton stripes? Harajuku from Japan? Lemme know in the comments.

P.S. I know that Zara was founded in Spain, but they are widely available across the UK

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Confession: I'm obsessed with Hunter Wellies

I know you're all well aware of my Hunter Wellies obsession. I currently own one pair, the original green in the Huntress style.

And they are outrageously expensive, but I really want another pair. I know I'm certifiable, but it's an obsession I tell you. I should be asleep right now, but instead I'm watching youtube videos about Hunter's. There's a bit of a following behind them, and if you live in a rainy/snowy climate like I do, then you'd understand why. They are very classy, and very quintessentially English, or New English depending on which country you live in. I don't really think my obsession with these boots is really any different than someone else obsessing over makeup or cat related things. Everyone has something they really love, my thing just happens to be rain boots. I do have an obsession with Rainy weather, and Rain gear, as I've blogged about in the past. I'm pretty sure I've also written about why it's Hunter boots that I'm so obsessed with, but if I haven't before here it is now, and if I have well bear with me.

I love Hunter boots because of their history, they're a very old company, and for a company to have lasted that long means that they are a quality product. The older a company is, the more I tend to love it, Macy's has been around since 1858, Tiffany's since 1837, Nordstrom since 1901. All three of those places are my favorite shops. (disclaimer I've never actually shopped at Tiffany's but I do stare at the website for hours). Hunter Boots was started by Henry Lee Norris in 1856 and the boots were made for Scotland's rugged terrain and unpredictable weather. While the materials they use to make the boots has changed as they've found better materials, the dedication to quality has not changed at all. A lot of people say the average life of the boots is 5 to 10 years which is amazing for rain boots, as most of them don't make it through spring. I have also seen reviews where people have said they've had their boots for 20 years and they're still in amazing condition. I think it all depends on how much you wear them, but the minimum I've read about is 5 years.

Another Secret: I have this image of myself in the snow on Christmas morning, wearing my Hunters with black trousers and a cream coloured cable knit jumper. And if you can't tell by my use of Jumper instead of Sweater and the u in Colour, that I also wish I were in England but that's another post. I need to get some of the Wellie socks Hunter sells for them, to make them extra warm for the winter. I'm actually really hoping for a cold snowy winter this year, just so I'll get some good use out of my boots.

I can't decide if I want a red pair, or a yellow pair, or a black pair. Actually I want them all, but that would be insane. If I bought either the Red or Yellow I'd buy them in the Glossy style, and the black I'm undecided between the matte and the glossy.  I think the Red ones would be great they make me think of Ramona Quimby who happens to be my favorite girl ever. I don't care if she's just a storybook character, she was my first icon. I wanted to be exactly like her when I was little right down to her Red Wellies, and I never did get my Red wellies, so I could be just like her. I think I like them best in the short style, with a pair of the wellie socks they sell, they would be perfect for stomping around in the snow.

I probably won't be able to get them until early next year, because they are something I have to save up for, but they are definitely on my wishlist. I know, I know I don't need them, and while I can come up with a bazillion reason why I need them, such as having another pair would greatly save on wear and tear on my other boots, but the reality is I just really really really want them, and they would make me smile every time I saw them, I get incredibly happy just looking at the pictures on them online. And really I think that's more than enough reason to start saving for them. I'm really hoping they'll be included in a Christmas sale at one of the retail locations that sells them. But even if I have to wait, it'll be more than worth it.


Disclaimer, there are affiliate Ads in this post, they were the easiest way for me to add pictures of the boots all I had to do was search them in the side of blogger and click add.

Friday, October 19, 2012

My take on Western style or Giddyp Cowgirl?

Today I was getting dressed and I had an outfit in mind that didn't end up looking like I thought it would once I put it on. So I had two choices change my entire outfit or keep the base pieces the same and change the way I was wearing them and my accessories.

So the outfit started with H&M skinny trousers, and an American Eagle light wash Denim western style shirt, origionally I wanted to wear it untucked, but I decided tucked in would be better today.

Then I added a Rose Gold H&M Belt, a floral and stripe scarf and a pearl bracelet. Unfortunately I've forgotten where I got both from. I also don't remember where I got my sunglasses from.

Finally came my western inspired riding boots from Pink and Pepper, and I was feeling very cowgirlish.

The Final Result: 

Obviously this outfit feels a little costume-y to me, and I think it would be much cuter with a white button down and maybe a different scarf, a longer one. But all in all I like it. It's definitely different than what I usually wear but sometimes it's fun to be a little costume-y with your outfit. Now where are those horses? It's much more rancher/cowgirl than English riding style, but the English riding style will be coming soon I promise. Just as soon as I pick up a good plain button down. I think maybe a charcoal grey would be great.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Budget Shopping, you're *probably doing it wrong

I know that most of us are on a budget, and most fashion guides or magazines we read are aimed at those with a much more disposable income. So we resort to cheap and cheerful places and end up with what is essentially a pile of crap after just a few washes. Which is actually a giant waste of your money, because now you're stuck wearing threadbare, misshapen, holey clothing. If you are over the age of 22 you should not be shopping at forever 21 or Charlotte Russe, or Aeropostale. Don't worry I'm guilty of it too, I have a pair of jeans from Aeropostale that I love. Though I think those jeans I just got really lucky with, and I don't wear them often, or when I'm leaving the house if I can avoid it. The quality just isn't worth what you're getting and it probably isn't made for your body shape. The reason those places are inexpensive is because they have a high turnover rate, and they're trend stores. They're there for teenagers who get bored or grow out of their clothes to quickly to make it worth it to buy quality garments. This is where so many people go wrong, they think because the stores are inexpensive and trendy that they're shopping smart. In reality you're just tossing your money away.

It's far smarter to spend your time and money buying things that will last you a while. Once you're in your mid 20's you should begin to build the wardrobe you'll have for the rest of your life. There is a reason it's called building a wardrobe, it takes time and effort, and little bit of money. If you purchase one quality item that fits you amazingly here and there that will last you 5 to 10 years, then you'll be far better off than if you head to forever 21 to buy $50 worth of items that are of low quality and will be misshapen after you wash them. It may take you longer to build up your wardrobe this way but you won't have to be replacing items as often. Not only will you stick to your budget, but you're more likely to think about your purchases and make sure you really love them before you bring them home.

So where are you supposed to shop? Well there are actually a list of places, but I'll start with the general rule of invest in your classics. Not your basics, your classics, there is a difference. You shouldn't pay $70 for a white tee that you'll wear a bazillion times because chances are it won't stay white. Especially not if you have young children. But your classic pieces that you will wear and want to wear for the rest of your life, those you should invest in. Trench coats, Little Black Dress, Handbag, those are investment pieces. If you only bought one you could easily use it for the rest of your life.

Your basics can be picked up at mid-range like Macy's, JCPenney's and Nordstrom. TJ Max or TK Max if you're in the UK is a great place to get your basics. Macy's especially is great because they almost always have sales going on. JCPenney lowered their prices and not their quality when they revamped themselves earlier this year. I know a lot of people wouldn't consider Nordstrom a mid-range store, but they do have a lot of great sales, and not everything there is outrageously priced.

Then there's chain stores, such as Loft, The Limited, New York and Company, and H&M. Starting off with H&M there prices range from insanely low prices to really insanely expensive. I really love H&M for their trendier pieces, they're decent quality and usually lower priced. The other 3 stored are great for their sales, and if you see something there you like you can either splash out a bit, since their prices aren't too insanely high, or you can wait for the sales where you'll really get more bang for your buck.

These are just example stores, ones that I personally shop at. If you're wondering what it is that you should be buying there are tons of "Items every women should own" lists out there. I'm not going to make one of those lists now, and really they're just guidelines. I might make one down the line, containing the items that I feel are most applicable to my life, but I'm still working on building my closet up after my closet clear out.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Beauty Boxes, are they worth it?

The single word answer is yes. The long winded answer will follow and you'll find it's more of a that really depends on you.

I used to recieve Birchbox, I canceled it because the samples I was receiving in my box which were mostly skincare and perfume samples and that just wasn't working out for me. My overall experience was good. I did receive a few products that I loved and a few I've actually purchased. I gave it to a friend for Christmas last year and she still subscribes to it as far as I know and I'm glad she likes it. It just didn't work for me and I wanted to try something new. Honestly if I made the round of beauty boxes and didn't find another one I loved, I'd probably resubscribe. Birchbox is $10 a month for 5 beauty samples

Then I did Julep and decided it wasn't worth it because I don't love the polishes I was receiving. What you have to realize before you base your decision off mine is I have a lot of nail polish. Really boxes and boxes full and anytime I see something new in store I buy it. But I'm sort of running out of new, and if OPI and ESSIE can't give me new Julep isn't going to either. It's not the brands fault, it's mine. Julep is $20 a month for 2 polishes and a bonus, either polish or product.

Those are the two that I've actually tried, next I want to try Glossybox. I like that the Glossybox products are a bit more worldwide. I really like the idea of trying things that I normally wouldn't try because they aren't in my face every time I step into Sephora or CVS. I've watched a lot of people unbox their glossyboxes and I'm always jealous that I'm missing out. So I'll be signing up for that soon. Either this month or next month. When I get my first box I'll do an unboxing on here of it. Glossybox is $21 for a Monthly Subscription for 5 luxury beauty samples.

I really regret that I'm not receiving a beauty box right now, and can't wait to remedy that. I love the surprise factor and waiting impatiently for it to come. Plus the holidays are coming up and I've noticed that the boxed are always best November to February.

There are several other companies that do this sort of thing, such as beauty army and beautybox5 but  honestly I don't know much about them. If you know of any more leave them in the comments below I'd love to try them out.

I know that it may seem like a lot to pay for these samples but they're deluxe size or travel size samples for most of them with a full size thrown in here or there. That makes the box well worth it when you consider that Sephora charges you about $8 + for high end travel sizes. The cost you'd pay for the items almost always goes over the amount you paid for the box. Plus it's like sending yourself a surprise present every month and I love presents. It also as I said introduces you to new products that you wouldn't normally try. So the question is really less are they worth it? and more a question of which one is right for you?

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Scarves! Scarves! Scarves! and a DIY Sequin scarf.

In case you can't tell by the title I adore Scarves. They're just the perfect completer for an outfit when it's cold outside.  I'm wearing one today, a gauzy sheer scarf that I polka dotted with metallic fabric paint. It's probably the last wear of the year I'll get out of this particular scarf. Then it'll have to be packed away in favor of my warmer winter, woolen type scarves. It's hard not to feel schnuggly with a big warm soft scarf wrapped around you when it's freezing cold outside. And in my opinion the bigger and thicker knit the better. Especially if it has some sparkle to it.

Obviously you can knit these your self if you know how to knit, and if you don't and are looking to learn a scarf is a great starter project. Personally I learned to knit from a book called Stitch and Bitch, and a scarf was my first project. There are some other great how-to books out there and Patons which is a yarn company has some great books. I just recently learned to knit socks from a Patons book.

If you decide to learn to knit make sure you start with a yarn you love the feel of, and that's easy to work with, not one of the shaggy yarns because  those are a bit harder to use.

I'm kinda lazy though so I like to buy my scarves. Currently I'm on the look out for a thick knit scarves like these:

None of those are exactly what I'm looking for but they give you the idea of the feel that I'm looking for out of a scarf. I want that big bulky schnuggly feeling. That's not saying I wouldn't knit myself a scarf, if I were to say find a great pattern and a yarn I absolutely loved. Knitting scarves is one of my favorite winter projects.

I think the best part about scarves is how easy they are to wear, they aren't just functional anymore, depending on the fabric and weight and style of the scarf you really can have any sort of outfit you want. Just because I personally love thick knit infinity scarves, doesn't mean you won't be just as cute in your oblong cashmere scarf. It's all about how you style it.

Infinity scarves are kind of thoughtless about how to wear them, you just toss it on and loop twice maybe with an extra twist for a bit of design, and you're done. Oblong/Rectangle or Square scarves if you prefer, offer you tons of different options when it come to tying them on. You can do the traditional fold in half and use the loop to secure the loose ends, or you can fold it in half, put one of the loose ends through then twist your loop and put the other loose end through the twisted hole. It looks like you spent all this time tying a cute knot when really it only took you a few seconds. There are some great online tutorials for tying your scarves

If you want a sparkly scarf you can obviously buy them made that way, but they're often way to expensive for just the cost of adding a few sequins to some yarn. So why not do it yourself.
  • Grab a scarf you already have, or pick one up on the cheap. This will work best with large knit scarf, but you can easily use any scarf you want. 
  • Next you'll need some sequins. You can pick them up in a mix, or silver and gold, or in the exact same color of your scarf for a more subtle sparkle. 
  • Then you need a thread in the same color as your scarf. This doesn't have to match your sequins because the thread won't be that noticeable since you'll only go through the sequin once, maybe twice, depending on if you want them loose and dangling or secured down flat. But if it doesn't match your scarf the knots or stitches inbetween your sequins, depending on how you do it will show on the other side of your scarf. 
  • A needle, because how else are you going to sew them on.

Now depending on what kind of scarf you're using you'll plan out how to place the sequins on differently. If you're using a thick knit type scarf you'll probably want to spread them out all over the whole scarf. If you're using a different kind of fabric scarf you may want to stretch it out and create a little design on either end of the scarf or sprinkle them all over the whole scarf.

Once you've got your design set up start sewing them on. It's up to you if you want to sew them on both sides or just one side. I recommend you do both because the scarf will twist as you put it on, but if you want it to be more subtle then one side is probably best.

Bonus if you know how to knit, or are learning they sell yarn with sequins already woven in it. You can knit this up into any scarf pattern, and it'll be super cute.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Emma Watson, Perks of Being a Wallflower

Today has been a lovely day. I slept in, went grocery shopping and I don't know about you but there's something about buying fresh organic vegetables and apple cider and Nylon, just because Emma Watson's on the cover, that makes me insanely happy.

So first thing after putting my groceries away was curl up with my magazine. I have an insane amount of love and respect for Emma Watson, as a person, as an actress and as a fashion icon. I love that she says it took doing a movie like Perks to make her want to act.  I adore that she wants to legitimately act and have substance behind her roles, rather than just be a prop to make the clothes look good in whatever film she's in. I know that a lot of people judged her because she said she wasn't sure if this was what she wanted to be doing anymore when she was on the promo tour for the final Potter film, but you do have to think that she was just sort of thrown into this very young and into a film series that was much bigger than I think any of the actors grasped at the time. It's hard to be that famous that quickly, to not get to screw up all on your own with no one watching your every breath. I respect her that much more because this amazing script landed in her lap, and she made it happen. This story is epic, better yet infinite.

I'll admit I haven't seen the movie yet, but I've read the book. Many times, in fact. Because of that I can say that this isn't a movie saying no one should bully anyone ever. This isn't a happy easy teen flick where no one gets their heart broken and everything magic in the end. This is the story that say it's okay to be different, and shows you how being different works out. Charlie is real, I read a review on the book that said they felt the characters were one dimensional. I couldn't wrap my head around that, a story book character has never felt more real to me than Charlie. All I could think was the writer of that review was never one of those kids in high school.  The writer of that review somehow either had it easy, or glorified their high school days, I don't envy them either situation. Every moment of my life has given me a choice and it's those choices that have made me who I am.

From what I've seen of the actors previous work, the film could not have been better cast, and Emma Watson as Sam is the most ingenious move that has ever been made. I don't think she could have been better cast than if the actual Sam had stepped out of the book. If you've seen anything Emma's ever been in, if you've read even a few chapters of the book then you know what I mean, she just fits. Her reluctance to be famous on the level America takes it's actors too, and factoring in her lack of a normal teen experience, makes her the perfect fit for Sam.

The movie has just recently been released to a wider market and I can't wait to find out if it's in a Theater near me. If not I'm willing to travel a hour out of the way to see it. I think I'd feel like I failed if I didn't see it.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Colored Denim for Autumn

I know colored Denim has been a trend for a while now. It was really big this spring along, with Mints and Corals probably being the most popular color. I know those really aren't the best colors for fall, though if you pair them up right you can totally work them into your fall wardrobe. I mean really they're pants just add a sweater and a scarf and you're pretty much fall ready.

But if you're not the type of person who feels comfortable rocking pastels in fall, then I recommend you grab a pair in red, purple or a cobalt blue. You can find these anywhere, but Free People have some really cute ones on sale for 39.95 right now.

These colors are perfect to work into your existing fall wardrobe since most peoples fall wardrobes are full of colors like black and grey. They still sort of work as a neutral as denim is always considered a neutral. The pop of color in the denim would really brighten up a mostly neutral outfit. You could also pair these into a monochromatic look or if you're not quite that daring an ombre look. For instance you could pair the red jeans with a red-orange sweater and some oxblood ankle boots, add in some gold jewelry, or if you wanna be even more matchy-matchy garnet or ruby toned jewelry, and you've got a cozy warm outfit. Then you can take the same jeans and pair it with a cute blouse and a blazer or cardigan with elbow patches and some cognac oxfords and you've got a cute capable scholarly look. Or pair them up with a stripey top and some ballet flats and you've got a look that Taylor Swift would wear (and actually has worn).

I love the darker colored denims, they definitely feel like fall to me and I will be picking up a pair soon. Probably in red.

*Disclaimer: There are affiliate links in this post.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

It's time for me to Obsess about Victorias Secret again...also lecture about wearing sweats in public

No not fall, well it is fall but that's not what I'm talking about. It's the time of year when I begin to obsess over Victoria's Secret Pajamas and Sweats and their Fashion Show. It's one of my favorite parts of this time of year. Ya know along with Halloween, Christmas, and all the Shopping, Wrapping and Glittery-ness of this season.

VS Pajamas and Sweats are just the ultimate cozy girliness to me. They're always sparkly and shimmery and the models are so gorgeous. And who doesn't want to feel like a VS model.  Their winter campaign is most likely my favorite because of all the snowflake themed-ness (Not a word. What? I made it up) of it. I love snowflakes I think I lamented about this last year. I have a pair of pink pjs from VS that I love that have snowflakes all over them that I'm heart broken about because it seems that I've lost them somewhere in my massive laundry pile. They're my favorites though and I'll be hunting for and laundering/ironing them later today. (What, you don't iron your pjs? Bah they're mostly the only things I iron.)

Now I know, I know, sweats and pajamas are not appropriate for wear outside of the house, well I'll let sweats and yoga clothes slide if you're on your way to or from the gym, are really ill or flying trans-continental, or on an 8 hr roadtrip. I know people break this general fashion 'rule' all the time. If you're going to do this, then there are some sub rules you should follow.

1. No pajamas outside ever, seriously you have no reason to hit up Target, Walmart or worse the Mall, in your pjs.
2. Make sure your sweats or yoga clothes cover all your bits.
3. And that they're clean, and look like they are clean, really if they are stained don't wear them out, I don't care if you're running out for more paint, paint splattered jeans are cute, paint splattered sweats are skanky.
4. No sweats with Uggs
*exception to 4, you're sick and on the way to the doctor, being warm and comfy when you're sick trumps all else. 

Also these rules only sort of apply to hoodies, as long as it's not stained, fits you well, and goes with what you're wearing/doing that day then wear them, they are outerwear. Just remember as with anything else there is a right and wrong way to wear them. The wrong way is if it's ill fitting, dirty, stained, or torn.  

These are really just my opinion, I can't force you to follow these rules, but remember, first impressions are everything. That guy behind the paint counter could totally be the one, or you might run into your boss at the hardware/ grocery store.

But back to the VS Sweats, there's one hoodie I've wanted ever since I saw it a few years ago and they've always brought it back in different colors but it's always sold out in my size when I try to get it, but they have it now, I'm hoping to convince my husband it's a perfect 8 yr anniversary present. *8 years from our first date, our relationship is a second grader, it can do multiplication tables. Because we usually buy each other schnuggly if not entirely practical presents for our anniversary's.  So not only do they have it in my size but they have it in one of my favorite colors and I would wear it to death. Until it's no longer acceptable to wear anywhere but to bed when I'm ill. Which would be a long time, because I have a hoodie from vs in this color (but not this pattern) that has been warn to what should be it's death and it still looks like new, I've miraculously not stained or torn it, and it isn't fraying at all. I usually wear it with shorts and sperrys on the fourth for fireworks (if you aren't from the states that's Fourth of July) or great jeans and chucks if I'm taking my son to the park and plan on playing with him, or running errands if I'm not feeling to well. It usually makes me feel better because it's cozy and still pretty cute (it's all about how you style it people)

  *Side note: I know that buying the same sweats Miranda Kerr models will not make me look like her, they won't make you look like her either, but I do feel a little bit hotter when when I wear them, because lucky for me cozy in sweats with no makeup and my glasses is just as sexy to my husband as all dressed up is. And I love cozy.

Edited to add: I've just found out the fashion show will air December 4th this year on CBS at 10pm

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Autumn Day Look

Delia's Toggle Coat
H&M Zip Back Top 
Dark Green H&M Pants 
Alloy Riding Boots
H&M Sunglasses and Bracelets

I linked what I could find, but most of the items don't seem to be available online.  The Boots are from 3 years ago, so you won't be able to find them anymore, but everything else is this season, so you might be able to find what I couldn't link in stores.

I loved this outfit.  It felt like something Taylor Swift might wear with different shoes maybe.  It's definitely my favorite outfit so far this autumn.

So tell me do you like this style of video?

Fashionable Cozy

It's Autumn now, and will be winter very soon.  This of course means the temperatures will only continue to drop if you live in the Northern Hemisphere. This is great news for fashion, and bad news all at the same time.

Starting with the September Issue Fall/Winter fashion sets fashionable people everywhere in a frenzy.  The dark colors, rich textiles, and endless possibilities for layering are like candy to the fashionable. Boots, coats, scarves and sweaters are definitely my favorite part of cold weather.  Actually aside from how my small town looks right after a fresh snow fall, everything smooth and glittering, the fashions are the only things I like about cold weather.

But what happens to the regular people? Those just trying to make it through their day with out freezing to death.  Well that's when fashion dies. Being cold is the worst feeling ever, and if staying warm becomes your only focus, you often don't care how ratty the sweater looks or how ill fitting it is as long as it keeps you warm.

Personally I kinda get it, I do love to be warm, and there are times when fashion should be sort of pushed to the wayside.  I do have a large puffy coat and ugglike boots for days when it's just to cold to function, or I'm to sick to cope with being cold. I say ugglike because I refused to pay $100+ for boots that ugly no matter how warm they are.

Considering how the cold weather sets the fashion world in a frenzy, you think people would find it easier to look good and be warm in the fall.  But there's often a disconnect from the catwalk to the sidewalk. You see the trends and love them but just can't figure out how to apply them to your everyday life. Oxblood looks great in Theory but how do you make it work in an office?

It's actually a lot less daunting than you think. First you need to look in your closet and pull out somethings you think would 'go' with Oxblood.  Are they all or mostly pants/skirts? Great that means you pick up a well fitting oxblood sweater. It really is as simple as that, you most likely already have something in your closet that will work with a trend you love and want to add in.

Now that I've covered how to work in a trend, lets get to the all important staying warm. I know it's easy to just pull on the same ill-fitting black sweater you've had since you were 21, but it's just as easy to hit H&M and pick up a great cable knit sweater for $15 that will fit you much better and is just as warm.  The main thing you need to focus on is fit. You don't actually need to worry that much about trend.  Sweaters are always in come the cold weather season. Layer it with an oxford underneath for a preppy look. Don't like preppy, well try a studded collar blouse for a rocker look.  Thermal and long sleeve tees are great for underneath sweaters or if you're buttoning it up all the way you can wear a light weight thermal under a oxford and blazer for work. As long as the thermal doesn't show under the top, you'll still look stylish and be plenty warm in the office. And remember it doesn't have to be black, any warm rich tone you feel good it will be perfect.

Another great way to stay warm is a great fitted Jacket. Jackets are for warmth, so picking up one in a great neutral will definitely keep you plenty warm. Or if you find your winter wardrobe is mostly neutral already pick up one in a bright jewel tone. The fit is important, you generally want to find one that is structured and not boxy.  A boxy jacket will only make you look larger, finding one that's tailored will help create shape.

Another way to stay fashionable and still be plenty warm are tights. Not only do I pair opaque tights and leggings with my dresses when it's freezing outside, I wear them underneath my pants if its really cold. The light layer doesn't add any bulk under the pants and it makes even my thinnest pants so much warmer.

It's easy to be fashionable and still be cozy and warm the Fall/Winter Season. Just remember that your clothing should always fit. I know you want to be curled up on your couch with cocoa in a over-sized ratty sweater, but make sure the ratty sweater stays on your couch when you leave the house.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

*The Truth About Style Review

I have just finished reading Stacy London's new book The Truth About Style and already I want to reread it. It really is the truth and not a how to. It was so much more to absorb than I thought it would be and I feel like I need to reread it to fully grasp all the things she talks about. I was expecting her trademark biting sarcasm and humor, but instead found much deeper insights into what made my current idol into who she is now, and why she decided to get there.

Many people my parents included write Stacy London off as mean or cruel, since most of the time on her and Clinton Kelly's show What Not To Wear those getting a makeover didn't asked to be made over and even upon agreeing are still reluctant. What people don't usually see is that she actually cares about each person she's worked with and truly believes and has proven many times that changing your style to showcase the best you, can and in most cases will enable you to change your life. This book shows not only the journey of 9 everyday women that Stacy gave styling advice too, but it shows the reasons behind what they were wearing and how what they should be wearing will benefit them. Then the book gives Stacy's perspective, how she relates, in a segment called "I get it".

And she does, get it.  The women's stories spoke to her, because she had been there in some form or another. The women's stories spoke to me as the reader because I have been there in some form or another. The issues the women in her book face and try to cover with clothing, are issues every woman has faced or will possibly face in her lifetime. The tell you in the cover of the book that it's humorous, but they neglect to tell you that not only will you laugh, you'll probably cry too.

In sharing her story of how she became who she is and why, Stacy also makes you look at yourself. Halfway through the book (I started it last night), I got up this morning and had a fashion crisis. Honestly I'm glad I've already done my closet clear out or I may have had a fashion breakdown. I'm good now I managed to get dressed, and finish the book. It has made me look a little harder about why I've bought the things I have and re-evaluate what I do plan on buying. I believe every woman should own this book. It's not just a list of things you need. It's a why you need style.

Not fashion. To paraphrase Stacy's words in her book "Fashion is an industry, Style is personal." I've always agreed with this. Fashion is meant to be unattainable, I see the fashion industry as art. Not actually applicable to my everyday life. I've personally always viewed style as how I take that art and make it applicable to me and my life. Stacy takes this sentiment to a much deeper level and really shows you what makes style personal.

This isn't to say the trends aren't fun and you shouldn't experiment with them, it's just realizing that the trends aren't actually made for everyone, or anyone really. Style on the other hand is not only for everyone but is deeper than just what you're wearing.

The truth about style is that there is a psychology to what you're wearing and what you should be wearing and the why's of both of them. Stacy makes this concept feel less daunting and in breaking down why each of these nine women are wearing what they are, and why and what she should be wearing, you'll most likely find that she's breaking down what you're wearing and what you should be wearing.

I can easily see myself rereading this book, and it quickly becoming a comforting favorite. I deeply and truly love this book.  As a matter of fact I'm going to go make a cup of tea, and curl up with it right now.