Monday, November 28, 2011

Obsession Alert: Florence Welch and her Fashion Machine

Not only am I super excited about the new Florence and the Machine album (as it is overdue in my eyes) but I have been keeping my eyes on Florence Welch's fashion forward yet vintage channeling style since she hit the scene. Not only can she pull off gorgeous gowns but in her every day attire, she totally brings a funkier feel to more vintage silhouettes. Plus, that red hair. Gorgeous. I am totally obsessing over Flo lately.

photos via Zimbio

Friday, November 25, 2011

Black Friday: A Dark Day in my Eyes

Today is Black Friday, which I am sure you are well aware. I want to preface this rant about Black Friday by saying that I love to shop, I love getting new clothes and shoes. I love getting a good deal as much as the next person. That being said, today, I really took a long, hard look at the way that Black Friday's in store deals have created monsters out of a specific portion of the American people... and I don't really love this aspect of the holiday shopping season.

My Black Friday partner in crime, Cristina, and I decided to "do" Black Friday this year by driving to near by New Hampshire Thanksgiving evening to get our goods at a Walmart where they opened at 6 on Thanksgiving and shoppers could begin purchasing at 10pm. We thought this was the best idea that we had ever had. We would get in and out, it was brilliant! We embarked around 930 last night, Thanksgiving, and were on our way; I needed a camera for my Mom and she needed a surround sound system for her husband. We love a good deal and always have fun together until 45 minutes later, we saw the cluster from the highway. This Walmart in Hudson, NH was ridiculous. The parking lot was full and then some, there were police and the Sam's Club parking lot across the road was also filling up. It was legitimately crazy. Three or four years ago, Cristina would have totally taken this bull by the horns and braved the crowd... but not this time.

We almost immediately decided that our "great deals" were not worth the hassle of parking, fighting, waiting, fighting, and depriving ourselves of sleep over. The crowd seemed chill enough, there were just legitimately too many people. We turned around and went home, agreeing to try and just get our goods online and if not? Oh well, worse things have happened. I got my camera online this morning and she got some of her stuff this morning, not all of it but some of it at least. It turned out OK for us. Fast forward later on today when in watching the news or seeing things posted online, that all sorts of crazy sh!t went down today and left me absolutely astonished:

*A woman pepper sprayed up 20 people at a Wal-mart in California, most resulting minor injuries but seriously lady? How important could the deals you are trying to get possibly be... and on an XBox? To top this sundae all off, the woman apparently scooted away, bought her hard fought goods and went on her merry way with no repercussions. Gross. 

*Police said a man was shot in the parking lot of another California Walmart after he refused to give up his purchases to a group of thieves. WTF. There were police at the Hudson NH Walmart and there were SO many people there that I couldn't even imagine someone being able to steal stuff and get away with it. Apparently, all it takes is a gun. Seriously Gross.

*Oh guess what, there was another shooting, this time at a Walmart (surprise surprise) in South Carolina. Thieves were trying to steal her purse because it seems easier to steal sh!t from people when it's dark and they are focused on one thing and one thing only, AMAZING DEALS! Was anyone aware that this woman was being mugged? Did anyone care?

*Two things I thought would never be in the same sentence together: Waffle Makers and Riots... until today. Check out this video take at another Walmart where people went abso-effing nuts over $2 Waffle Makers. All I have to say is, Crack is Whack... and this video disgusts me in more way than one. We are fighting over waffle makers? Imagine if we were starving and there wasn't enough food to go around... we would be bloodthirsty aholes with no regard for other human life. This sort of situation deeply saddens me, deeply deeply saddens me.

 I am sure there are more instances of hungry, competitive Black Friday shoppers taking the thirst for a deal over that line; I don't really want to hear about it. I love a good deal as much as the next person, really I do. What I love more is when a good deal is fair and those who are there first get a ticket or something and automatically get the item they came for, because they got there first. Why can't that be a normal standard procedure for this type of thing? Isn't there a better way to get a deal? To me, it seems that Walmart in particular, has no more control over Black Friday crowds than it did the year that their very own employee was trampled opening the store's doors. It's sort of cray cray.

To me, Black Friday, especially today, was a dark day in my eyes. I feel guilty for ever taking part in early morning deals at any establishment, waiting in line, maybe rushing to get any item which is never worth the fight... and all around supporting the craziness. If I purchase any deals in the future on this weekend in November, they will be online from the comfort of my own home... because I don't want to be maced, mamed or worse, shot.

What do you think of this year's Black Friday happenings?


Monday, November 21, 2011

Thankful for so Much, it's Ridiculous

Thanksgiving is this week and yes, I am excited to eat some turkey and mashed taters, mmmmm. I am also excited about having a four day weekend and for some time with fabulous friends but this time of year we are always asked what we are thankful for. For me? It is so many things...

I am thankful for wine. Wine helps to relax me after a long day at work. Our mutual love of wine tastings brought me and my man together and is still a staple in our diet ;-) We even have a wine refrigerator. Wine is good. I am thankful for sweaters as they not only keep us warm when it is cold outside but sweaters are pretty much my favorite clothing items to wear. I know I am lucky to be able to buy a sweater when I want one. Sweaters are good. I am thankful for dogs, mainly my Shetland Sheepdog. Henry (not shown here) is a great companion and even when I am having a "fat day", Henry loves me just as much as always no ifs, ands, or buts about it. Dogs are good. I am thankful for family. Without my family, I would not be me. I have my mother's looks and my grandmother's chest, my aunt's love of fun.... I love my family even when I don't like my family. I know that they will always be there for me and I also know that I should be thankful for every single day that I have with the. Family is good. I am thankful for Holidays like Thanksgiving where friends and family can come over and we have an excuse to eat, drink and spend the whole day together, mayhap sprinkling in the random nap. Holidays are most certainly good.

I am thankful for shoes. I know that it's so superficial to be thankful for shoes but dagnabbit they make me so very happy. It's something that the man just doesn't understand. Shoes are good. I am thankful for my job. While I don't particularly love my job, I am thankful to have it. In searching for a new job, I have realized how friggin' hard it is out there right now. Jobs are good to have. I am thankful for accessories, especially sassy accessories. Accessories can help us to express ourselves and also snazz up any outfit if placed correctly and with confidence. Accessories are most definitely good. I am very thankful for coffee. You can ask the man how cranky I get without my coffee. I know it's not great to have vices but this one is most certainly mine. I am thankful to drink it every day and have a quick pick me up when I need it. Coffee is good. I am thankful for friends. My friends, like my family, are my rock. I have some really, really great friends who I can confide in, who I can laugh with, who I can go out with and who I can stay in with. My boyfriend, one of my best friends, is not necessarily as interested in fashion and beauty goods but he tries to be :) Friends are my support and I appreciate them more than they'll ever know, although I do try to show them as much as possible. Friends are the best.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Versace for H&M, I'm Literally not Buying it

After all the hullabaloo with Missoni for Target, and my subsequent stress over whether or not I was going to get my hard fought (and won) order, I wasn't exactly thrilled with the idea of another designer collection for one of the stores that us "normal girls" shop at. I decided that I am not the type of girl that has to have something just because it's "designer" and is at a store I shop at on a regular basis. I was recently in a Target and saw some leftover, really sad looking, Missoni for Target stuff laying in an aisle with no home. I picked the items up and you know what I thought? Man, these are kind of expensive. You get what I am saying? The hype is what we are paying for, not necessarily the value or design of the actual item. After the hype was over with, the items weren't worth as much to me. 

With the Versace collection for H&M all the buzz in the fashion world, I took a look at the collection and decided what would even be worth my time to fight for... and I found there was not much there for me. Take a look at what I think are some of the more interesting pieces but overall, pretty unwearable in my day to day.

The colors are vibrant, my immediate thought it to get excited about how I could work these prints into my wardrobe... but the truth is, that I really can't. I am not saying that some girls can't, I just know myself and I know that these will hang in my closet waiting for that special night which may or may not come. But that being said, I don't hate the looks, I just know they aren't worth my fighting for.

If I were going to choose anything worth taking a sistah out over, it would be anything in the collection that is black. I think that the collection's take on a little black dress is fresh and inventive, and admittedly a little Versace.

Will I fight to get even these looks, the ones I admire the most? I don't think so. The UK website shut down already over this (sound familiar?) and stores have already sold out of some looks. If I happen to be in an H&M and one of these dresses happens to be there... I probably still won't purchase it. Why? I don't need to buy it just to say that I got it, I won it, I fought for it. I have better things to use my energy for. That doesn't mean I can't still look.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Obsession Alert: 40's and 50's Style

When I think of the decades that have made the most impact on my own personal style, I immediately think "Vintage" but more specifically I would say that the style of my Grandmother's youth, the 40's and the 50's have the most impact on what I determine to be both ladylike and exuberant. Today's designers agree because I can find so much "modern" fashion that has taken it's cue from these two decades. Lovely feminine details with classic hemlines is more my style than flashy flash and super short.
This love of these fashion eras has me in consignment and vintage shops looking for not only clothes from the era but also fabrics that are from the 40's and 50's that can be used on more modern patterns. What I love is that you can wear a turban with a sweater and jeans if you rock it with confidence.       

What fashion decade inspires you in your personal style?

Friday, November 11, 2011

Outfit Inspiration, Emma Stone

Hey ladies, I am sure that you have seen one of these looks of Emma Stone's on the red carpet. She certainly got attention for the pink and red semi-poof number that had people talking. So I know that this was this past Summer but as soon as I saw this dress on the newly launched Dorothy Perkins US Site, I was was like I.MUST.HAVE.IT! Granted, the Red/Orange Ponte Dress is not as exciting as Emma's looks buuuuut it does translate more seamlessly into my somewhat simpler wardrobe.

Who have you taken outfit inspiration from recently?


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Tyra Banks' Modelland

Despite being extremely full of herslef and borderline annoying almost all the time, I still have a hankering to read this (teen) book that Tyra Banks has been hocking. Yes, I do still record America's Next Top Model... hey this season is the All Star cast and yes, I suppose I watched a show or two of her talk show. I guess some would call me a fan. I begrudgingly take that label.

Anyway, her new book Modelland hit the stores in September and I have been trying to stay away. I mean, I do have some pride in what I am seen in public reading... but I have been thinking more about it lately, as in I want to purchase it and read it and LOVE it in private. Gah, what is wrong with me?!

Will you give me permission to purchase this book with no shame?


Monday, November 7, 2011

Mahtab Azimi in my Closet

So some have said that I am lucky in some regard when it comes to winning giveaways but my most recent win was more of a contest... and me thinks that I earned it. The challenge posed by the gals over at The Haute Gossip? Create a look from Polyvore using one of two items from designer Mahtab Azimi and you could win that very same item! The designer herself would choose the winner... and guess who won? Yours truly! Check out my winning look!

Some of my other favorite looks from Mahtab are as follows, she has a simple feminine sensibility but with a kick! What do you think? Will you keep an eye on Mahtab Azimi?


Thursday, November 3, 2011

Chanel's Fall Trends, DIY Style

Checking out the latest and greatest from the Fall runways show has been my favorite pastimes as of late. I am finding fashion inspiration in so many places and Chanel's Fall 2011 RTW is no exceptiong. The collection is mostly grays, blacks and whites in the form of textured jackets, blazers and sweaters. I am totally loving this part of the collection and decided to try and create something as a take on Chanel's fall line.

I picked up some blazers at a Goodwill while visiting my Mother. I thought this one had a little something although I knew it was a fixer upper, not a wear outta the store kind of look. It's most definitely 80's and the first thing I did was take out the shoulder pads (I don't need any more bulk on my shoulders than what is naturally there). There were a couple of stains and the colors were all wrong, for me anyways. It was too Miami Vice and not enough Lacy Chic.

Started with my ol' stand by RIT dye in Black. I knew that I planned to use lace in the reconstructing process, so I threw that in the dye bath as well. I wanted to go for a jet black but one never knows how a dye bath will turn out especially with a multi-colored garment to begin with.

Well, the end result? Eh, not exactly the BLACK that I wanted it to be. The blazer turned out to be a more purpley gray, which is of no surprise since it started with pinks and blues. The lace turned out to be a little darker gray... and together, I thought they looked pretty cool... although at this point, I am still thinking about doing another dye bath.

My plan was to adorn/garnish/embellish the blazer with the lace and maybe add a bit of black cording that I have had lying around. I did some major pinning so that everything was in it's place.  I knew that once I started sewing, I could pull things tight if need be.

After a couple of hours of hand sewing, I decided to take the Husqvarna out for a couple of reasons. #1 This was becoming majorly time consuming and #2 I knew I would get the accuracy I was looking for with the sewing machine. The edges were difficult but I knew that I was more than likey giving it another dye back, which would hopefully be forgiving of any tiny mistakes.

In the end, I did decide to give the old girl another dye bath. I really wanted to try and achieve as close as I could to the Chanel look I was going for... I did a decent job. The second dye bath really worked to get a dark black. While I thought about adding some sequins and extras, I decided to edit and move on with my life. I rolled up the sleeves (a tip of the hat to Miami Vice) and am ready to pahty.

I am totally wearing this to a show this weekend to see what some friends will think.... what do you think? Cool or Not worth the work?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Boyfriend, Buy Me One of these Coats

I am really feeling BB Dakota coats lately. The aren't the most extravagant coats but they have this southwestern feel that I am really into. This blog post is to show you some of my faves right now and also to tell my boyfriend blatantly to buy me one of these coats... soon.