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Friday, May 31, 2013

Friday's Fancies #131: Winning in White

Does anyone else love tennis season? It is a great reason to be outdoors and to enjoy the beautiful weather! I am a traditionalist - I love wearing my whites and letting off some steam at the end of a long week. Even if I am just using the backboard I feel so good sweating it out. Anyone else think tennis whites are super chic?

Friday's Fancies #131: Winning in White

Friday, May 24, 2013

Friday's Fancies #130: Memorial Day Weekend

What are your plans for Memorial Day weekend? M and I normally go to the beach and enjoy some fireworks and baseball! Grilling out and spending time with friends and/or family is always such a blast when you do not have to worry about work on Monday. I love the color combination of brown with red. Brown just brings down the bold look of red by itself without looking too fourth of July (as it would if one just put on a white cardigan!). I am trying to mix up both high and low price points - I hope you all like one or the other of these dresses and shoes. Enjoy your Holiday!
Friday's Fancies #130: Memorial Day Weekend

Thursday, May 23, 2013

TGIT: Thank God It's Thursday

Thank God it's... Thursday?

Yes. Tomorrow is Friday and the work day is already almost over (I leave at 6).

Why am I annoyed? Because a coworker just made this inane comment to me, "I was telling ____ I like your dress. It'd be perfect to turn into a nice big quilt."

So I gave this look:

...and quickly walked away.

Inside I was thinking this:

But to remain professional, I did not say that out loud.

Note: the dress is a classic madras dress that I got almost 10 years ago from J.Crew. A classic size 6 that drapes really well and is perfect in our humid RVA weather.:

[thank you Dragonfly]

A "big quilt" hmm? Who says that to another woman!? Especially a younger woman who is not your friend and you don't even have a working relationship with her. Plus, madras does not really make me think of quilts, either (although Google tells me they are big with children who shop at Pottery Barn). I don't think my dress, if turned into a quilt, could cover you, let alone any size of a bed!

Here is how that snide, you-must-be-post-menopausal-and-decided-to-no-longer-care-about-your-professional-appearance-unlike-me comment made me feel.


Friday, May 17, 2013

Friday's Fancies #129: Stripes

Who doesn't love a fun striped top? Doesn't it just say warm weather when you put on a la Marinière - whether in a classic color scheme or not? Fun adaptations of stripes - from skirts to pants - also make a strong statement. Just make sure the width of the stripes flatters your figure!

Why not make the most of this look by keeping it to one item in the wardrobe, and then coordinating the colors together. Keep it simple! Navy and white stripes look incredibly put-together when worn with a nude patent shoe and a straw fedora. A chic navy purse in a classic shape finishes the look off wonderfully. This outfit is a summer wardrobe staple for me!
Friday's Fancies #129: Stripes

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Fun and inexpensive items for Spring 2013

Ever look at something and think,
Okay, I love this _____, but I honestly do not feel comfortable spending $250+ on it?
Maybe it is a super on-trend item, or an incredibly bold color that would not go with many things in your wardrobe. I used to be completely against inexpensive brands - many reasons why - including labor and copyright violations (look at that horrible accident at the sweat shop in Bangladesh which included JC Penney/Joe Fresh among their clients). But sometimes you need to save money, and cannot think about other things that are pretty much out of your power (as an 'average Jane'). It is a horribly mixed bag, but I thought you all would enjoy seeing the pretty items I found exploring some new websites, as well as some old favorites that I read many of you shopping at from time to time. I do not know the origin of these brands, where the items are made, etc., but I am just trying to be more open to inexpensive brands to show how similar items can be found for less. I hope you enjoy my discoveries!

Starfish Stones Stud Earrings from C. Wonder, $48. I like the subtle blues here. The pink multi looks too harsh with the orange stone stuck in it.

Bold Links Bracelet from Jeweliq, $25. Sometimes I want a bold gold bracelet to tie in my gold earrings or necklaces. My engagement ring and wedding band set sometimes detract from any gold jewelry I wear, so I think a strong bracelet would help in complimenting the gold jewelry in an outfit. I think this is a slip-on, not hinged.

Orange bag, style no. 20769A, from Nila Anthony, $80. This bold orange purse is perfect for Florida Gator, Clemson, Virginia Tech, and University of Virginia fans alike. I really like the shape of this 'leatherette' purse. It has gold hardware and a zip top closure.

Fanton diamond quilted clutch crossbody purse from Big Buddha in white, $59. Another faux-leather bag that looks pretty decent - obviously Chanel-inspired - for those on a budget. The chain-link strap is removable. Lots of colors to choose from and since it is sold on HSN you can even do Flex Pay on it if you cannot pay for it all at once.

Danger Zone by Chinese Laundry, $89 on Genuine leather with a metal toe cap. Sold in black and white. Similar to the Louis Vuitton Merry-go-round pump from their Spring 2012 runway.

Sarah Shirred Tiered Cotton Maxi Dress, $30 from Floor-length maxi dress is made from 100% cotton. BooHoo is a UK-based company I recently read about in People Style Watch. Fantastic shipping deal: free shipping on US orders of $25 or more. Looks like it ships internationally!

Gold Navy Rope Print bandeau top, $52, from I have noticed, as an adult, that some surf shops that carry brands like Sperry and Roxy do an additional markup from the retail price. Why not buy directly from the brand's website? Might save $15 on a cute bathing suit top like this one this summer! This bandeau top also comes in 'golf green' with light pink lobsters!

Cristina Dress in poppy red by Club Monaco, $139. Super cute peplum dress from Club Monaco. On sale right now in both black and poppy red. Curved side seams and princess seams down the back. Nice poly-knit construction.

Peplum paneled dress with faux patent leather belt, $24.80 from Forever 21. Super bright orange poly-blend peplum dress. Forever 21 says there are darts at bust, but it almost looks like princess seams that stem off of the peplum at the waist. Apparently runs small.

Renegade Moto Jacket, $88 from Nasty Gal. Vegan leather moto jacket. Zipper details, side pockets, buckled waist, lots of details to make it look expensive. Runs true to size.

Which items are your favorite? Do you tend to buy on-trend items using faux materials or at discount stores to spend less money?

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Tropical Traditions coconut oil giveaway winner

Congratulations to the winner of the Tropical Traditions coconut oil giveaway!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you everyone who entered - so many entries! What an impressive number of interested parties.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Tropical Traditions gold label virgin coconut oil product review

I was recently given the opportunity to review the Tropical Traditions brand of coconut oil. They have multiple options, but their finest product is the gold label virgin coconut oil, which I was given in a quart-size jar.

Before I review the product, you may be wondering: How do I use this product? Can I use the same jar for skincare, my hair, cooking? Check out this YouTube video below to educate yourself on some of the benefits!

When you have a container of coconut oil, if kept in the correct condition, it should be solid. The texture of coconut oil when stored in a cool and dry place (pantry, for example) is that of hardened wax. When you scrape a spoon on the oil, it normally will flake like wax. When heated the oil melts down evenly and quickly. The scent of coconut is distinct and clean. The Tropical Traditions coconut oil is almost more potent than other brands I have previously used. It even occasionally had slight natural bits of coconut because they process these coconut by hand. When I made my coconut chocolate chip cookies with this product my cookie batter came out smoother. It had a wonderful strong coconut essence. It is also wonderful with scrambled eggs to replace butter in the skillet.

Some people do not like strong coconut products. This preference is up to the individual, particularly when cooking. Other products by Tropical Traditions will be less strong than this jarred version. I would get the jar as it will certainly keep longer than the plastic tubs. But I personally found this product to be quite pleasant to use and highly recommend it. I honestly would not have posted this review if I had not loved it.

Don't forget to enter my giveaway for this product - the winner will be chosen in six days!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose. Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product. None of the links in this post provide me with any monetary compensation.