Wednesday, May 30, 2012

May 30, 2012: A Blazer Alternative

In this tangible humidity it is really hard to wake up in the morning and motivate twoards a blazer. It's just too darn hot! Enter the equally almost as professional cardigan. Without the stuffy polyester lining a cardigan makes the heat and humidity a little more bearable don't you agree? I thought so... 

  • Top: ivory tank top, LOFT (same shirt different color here); black cardigan, Merona for Target
  • Bottombeige pinstripe trousers, LOFT/gift from BF
  • Shoes & Accessories: black pumps, Nine West;  my abuela's vintage silver hoops; Neverfull GM, Louis Vuitton/gift from BF

Items from this outfit are previously seen and remixed here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.

Don't forget to enter the giveaway for a $100 Shopbop giftcard!
Don't forget to enter the giveaway for a free dress from eShakti.com!!


Weekly Manicure: Kookoo for Coral

This utterly depressing, dour, and all around dismal weather has not completely destroyed my desire for warmer things. I am craving summer and could not think of a better way to channel that than with my manicure this week! Enter my favorite summer polish, Sally Hansen Complete Manicure in Kook-A-Mango (similar to my first coral manicure love Boat House by Essie)! I absolutely love the color, which is best complemented by tan skin and sandy surroundings. Normally, I would have thought twice before wearing such a bright polish to work but, after my boss was sporting a similarly carol manicure last week I felt fairly confident in my choice. What is your polish color of choice for a fun in the sun summer manicure?


Don't forget to enter the giveaway for a $100 Shopbop giftcard!
Don't forget to enter the giveaway for a free dress from eShakti.com!!

May 29, 2012: Holiday Hangover

Normally this term is synonymous with gorging oneself on too much food or imbibing a few too many cocktails but I find myself out of sorts for a different reason… too much relaxation? I know, that doesn’t really make a lot of sense. I spent Memorial Day weekend catching up on sleep and doing low key things around the house. Nevertheless, I still had SO much trouble peeling myself out of bed on Monday Tuesday morning to go to work; It was like I had just attempted a triathlon or something equally strenuous. What’s up with that?

That being said I am especially proud of myself for keeping it together wardrobe wise and rocking a professional ensemble complete with blazer! The feeling of sheer exhaustion wasn’t the only hurdle I had to overcome when putting my outfit together. The weather in NYC has been pretty gross. We’re talking high temps, 100% humidity (my hair loves this), overcast, misty rain nonsense... ick! I would really love a sunny summer! Is that too much to ask? Sorry, I digress... Picking out clothes to wear in my air conditioned office is hard when I feel like I won’t survive the commute there in what I’m wearing. Do you have any tips and tricks for summer office dressing that I could utilize?
  • Top: pink sweater with black trim, Alfani via Macy's via Mom; gray pinstripe blazer, Calvin Klein via Loehmanns (from this suit
  • Bottom: black skirt, Proenza Schouler for Target 
  • Shoes & Accessories: silver silver Stella wedge pumps, Seychelles via DSW; coin pearl necklace, V'ta jewelry; coin pearl earrings, borrowed from Mom then altered by me; Neverfull GM, Louis Vuitton/gift from BF

Items from this outfit are previously seen and remixed here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here 

Don't forget to enter the giveaway for a $100 Shopbop giftcard!
Don't forget to enter the giveaway for a free dress from eShakti.com!!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Giveaway: $100 Shopbop Giftcard

 

With the weather is rapidly heating up my mind drifts to warmer style. While my day-to-day attire doesn’t warrant the inclusion of Vix swimwear or Theodora and Callum espadrilles that doesn’t mean I can’t consider them for the weekend! Shopbop is a great place to find fun in the sun inspiration with all these things and more this summer.



You can’t go wrong with the bikini sale section to help you find something that is perfect for summer and at a great price. You can’t go wrong with the sale section at all for that matter... Fan Shopbop on Facebook and follow on Twitter to keep up with all the news regarding sales and other fantastic offerings.

Now for the fun stuff, this giveaway will be until June 11, 2012 and is open to ALL readers in USA and internationally! I will pick the winner via Rafflecopter. Here are the rules: become a follower in Google (if you aren't already) and leave a comment on this post letting me know what you would get with your $100 gift certificateCheck out the Rafflecopter widget for more ways to enter and keep your fingers crossed!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway: Custom Dress from eShakti.com

I have recently found myself checking out my fav custom dress website eShakti.com since we are in wedding season. Thankfully, I’m not one of those people that has five or ten upcoming nuptials on the horizon. Unfortunately, one can be enough to drive you crazy or break the bank if you are part of the bridal party or helping with the planning. eShakti.com can take some of the pain out of the process by providing excellent dress options for wedding guests, bridesmaids, mother of the brides, and even the bride herself!

My initial queries on eShakti.com were completely bride focused. Since one of my nearest and dearest cousins is going to be getting married at the end of next month I was searching for some out of the box dress options that were still in keeping with the laid back earthy theme of her wedding. Even if there wasn’t something that represented a perfect match eShakti.com’s inexpensive tailoring option opens a new world of possibilities for the bride so she can find the perfect match.

Floral Eyelet Dress
Strapless Rosette Pin Maxi


In Full Bloom Jersey Dress

Even a more traditional bride has options when it comes to eShakti.com!

Floral Eyelet Sheath Dress
Floral Eyelet Dress



Ruffle Front Poplin Dress

There are also spot on and affordable bridesmaid dress options in lots of different styles and matching or complimentary colors. Not all people look good in strapless dresses, which is one of the most common bridesmaid dress cut, but, I digress… Here are some excellent options that I found on eShakti.com:

Her Fifties Sundress

Pleated Full Trim Poplin Dress

Ruffle Front Surplice Dress




After browsing the site for a while I came across some a lot of potential dresses for me to wear as a guest to the upcoming wedding. There were options for more formal gatherings (link) and laid back ones (link) all being appropriate to wear as a wedding guest.

Butterfly Kisses Frock

Floral Blossoms Sheath
Graphic Blues Chiffon Maxi

Now for the fun stuff, this giveaway will be until June 11, 2012 and is open to ALL readers in USA! I will pick the winner via Rafflecopter. Here are the rules: become a follower in Google (if you aren't already) and leave a comment on this post letting me know which dress you would get if you won. You will also need to follow eShakti.com on Pinterest and Facebook. Check out the Rafflecopter widget for  even more ways to enter and keep your fingers crossed!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Will Return... Now


So, I have been way behind in posting… I have also been having some technical difficulties. Thanks fairly new  ASUS battery charger for crapping out on me. Concurrently, replacement charger, thanks for being really hard to track down. I hope the (second) one I ordered is the right fit so that I can get back to business. In the mean time I am going to move forward with new posts and some other fun stuff… Stay tuned!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mother's Day!!

To: You
From: Iris


Friday, May 11, 2012

Work With What You've Got: Ripped Pants & Iron On Patches

No, this is not a post about the 90s...My skinny pants made a desperate cry for attention right before my shopping trip.  They must have been thinking that I would never wear them again because they decided to rip as I sat down on my couch, the sound was tragic, drama queen! It was almost as bad as what happened with my skinny jeans the day before but, that’s a story for another day. 


Apparently newer pants, skinny or otherwise, used regularly only have a shelf life of approximately two years. This has not only been my personal experience but, BF’s as well. Because of this limited shelf life and the new wardrobe revelations regarding work I decided that instead of shelling out $60.00+ for a pair of replacement pants from the GAP I would fix them with an iron on patch. Crafty Iris to the rescue! 

Thankfully they had the patches at my local CVS but, I’m sure you could pick them up if need be at any pharmacy or grocery store that has a tiny section of sewing goodies. Since the offending hole was on the inside of my thigh it didn’t matter if black of the patch wasn’t an exact match for the black of the pants. First thing was to sew up the hole to reduce the risk of any additional ripping. 


Then I placed the patch to cover as much of the hole as I could and ironed away. The instructions on the packet of patches said to do it on the highest heat setting with no steam. It was a fairly straightforward process. For some reason I got some discoloration on the patch but, it’s not really a big problem since no one will be able to see it unless I show them. Because the patch didn’t cover the entire hole I ended up having to cut an additional piece from another black patch to rectify the situation but, it all worked out.


I haven’t worn them yet but, I am sure my handiwork will hold up to the wear and tear of life and hopefully the washing machine. Either way, this endeavor has saved me a pretty penny. Have you gotten crafty with anything lately? Please share I’m always inspired when other people do creative things to make what they have work for them!

Purchases and Acquisitions: April 2012


­­­­This month I went shopping with a vengeance! Also, my Mom got me some stuff but, I digress... I had a goal in mind (suits) but, tragedy stuck and in the short span of two days I was down one pair of skinny jeans and one pair of skinny pants. While neither of those items are work necessities they are some of the things I wear most on the weekends. The universe was telling me to go shopping.

I went shopping for replacement jeans with one of my close friends (who stuck with me the whole time, love ya!) the weekend after tragedy struck twice. While I wasn’t 100% on board with the idea of going shopping I knew I needed to replace my broken pants. We went to a ton of stores, trying on lots of different types/brands of jeans. Naturally, the ones that I was most comfortable in were at the last store that we went to, Forever 21. I know, I know… it isn’t where I would have thought either but, I’m glad I checked it out because I’m happy with what I got in the end. They had a great pair of dark wash skinny jeans for only $13.50! I bought two with a Visa gift card I had been holding on to. I also hit the GAP and bought another pair of pants to replace my ripped ones. Ouch, 'nuff said.

Next weekend the next stop on my shopping extravaganza was the Unique Thrift Store near my house. While I had every intention of going there to pick out more suits it ended up being a total bust on that front. I did, however, end up finding two lovely vintage dresses that fit perfectly for $4.99 each! I had no doubts or reservations in my mind as I headed to the register to check out, the shopping bug had caught me! I tried to pay for the total with some Unique Thrift Store gift cards that I had received for placing in their costume contest this past October but, they didn’t work… thanks? Fortunately I had another Visa gift card that I have been holding on to and there were no issues with that.

Then I took a short trip down the block to my local Loehmanns to check out their suit selection. I have had great success finding suits there in the past so, it was a  no brainer! After sifting through the racks of suits I found a Tahari suit that really worked for me (high stance, shorter jacket, etc.). I had a coupon so the $99.99 price tag (down from $280.00 MSRP) was whittled down a little more to $79.99 total. WIN? Either way my Mom took pity on my situation and helped me out with that one, thanks Mom!

Unfortunately, the jeans that I bought at Forever 21 ended up being too big even after I washed them. They were a little loose at the store but, I figured one go around in the washing machine and they would be perfect. Wrong, they were still falling off. So I had to go exchange/return them for a different pair. Thankfully, I ended up finding something that worked even better: jeans with an elastic waistband. Yes, they are a hop, skip, and jump away from being pajama jeans. Yes, I’m ok with that. They fit well and are super comfortable! Even better they were only $11.50!! So, I exchanged one pair of the larger jeans for two pairs of the smaller ones. In the same trip I also returned the GAP pants since I was able to patch up my broken pair, more on that later.

Since I had a coupon for Old Navy and some dresses that I had pinned on Pinterest in my mind I decided to stop by and see if I could find them. I used to shop for EVERYTHING at Old Navy but, my tastes (and their quality) have shifted so, I normally don’t give them alot of thought. They didn’t have what I wanted but, I did find a different dress that I liked on sale. When it fit I decided to go for it since the coupon and a gift card made it an easy purchase.

While at the mall I also decided to try Macy’s for a suit since they were having one of their sales and I had yet another coupon. I ended up finding another suit with a fantastic pattern that I’m sure you will be seeing soon! Don’t get too excited it’s still very work appropriate but, I digress… I had some gift cards and merchandise credits on top of the coupon so with all of the discounts combined the $69.99 suit (down from $260.00) ended up coming out to $10.27 which I paid for with the balance on one of my Visa gift cards.

Shopping Overview:
  • Unique Thrift Store
    • $9.98  Gift Card - $0
  • Loehmanns
    • $79.99 after coupon  Mom - $0
  • Forever 21
    • $36.50  Gift Card - $0
  • Gap
    • $62.10 Return
  • Old Navy
    • $9.75 after coupon  Gift Card - $0
  • Macy’s
    • $10.27 after coupon  Gift Card -$0

In the end I ended up getting a whole bunch of new needed stuff for no money out of my normal income. That was partly due to the fact that I returned the replacement skinny pants from the GAP since I was able to find away to make it work and my gift card hoarding tendencies. I don’t think I will be shopping like this again for a while. That’s not to say that I am done beefing up my suit selection, I just need to replenish my gift card reserves…
           

April 30, 2012: Change Of Heart

So despite various awkward conversations I was still very dedicated to my goal of no purchases unless they were entirely necessary. However, after the most recent conversation I started to doubt my original decision that I didn’t need to stock up on suits for this new job. My mother was kind enough to hit the thrift store for me and pick up a few things. But, after much contemplation and checking in the status of my (paltry) disposable income I decided to bite the bullet and go shopping to get some more suits.

While I will spare you the details of my shopping trip (for now) I will let you know that I did pick up a few really appropriate things for work like, this suit. YAY? While I wasn’t so keen on the pressure I felt to go shopping and purchases more suits this definitely fits the bill for what I would want: cute muted pattern, interesting details, high stance… overall success! What do you think?
  • Top: red floral print blouse, Old Navy with a tank top underneath for the modesty; beige blazer, Tahari via Loehmanns
  • Bottom: beige skirt with side pleat details, Tahari via Loehmanns
  • Shoes & Accessoriesgray pumps, Steve Madden; coin pearl earrings, borrowed from Mom then altered by me; Neverfull GM, Louis Vuitton/gift from BF


Items from this outfit are previously seen and remixed here, here, here, here, and here.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Weekly Manicure: Half Moon Cheetah

Last week I found my manicure in pretty good shape at the end of the week, despite the warnings from the Incoco kiosk person. The only major issue was the fact that my nails had grown a bit (as they tend to do) so, I decided to try something new instead of giving myself a whole new manicure



Enter, Half Moon Cheetah! Most half moon manicure tutorials tell you to start with a single color and then use some sort of round stickers to mark the half moon part while painting a second color on the upper part of your nail over the base color. Since I already had the color I wanted on the upper part of my nail I needed to try something a little different to get the desired effect. Using "old-fashioned" hole protector stickers I laid out a half moon shape at the bottom of each of my nails. It was a little tricky on the bigger nails (ex: my thumbs) but, I by cutting them in half a bit off center I managed to finagle them into a shape that worked.


They were was perfect for the task at hand and I painted a few coats of Sally Hansen's Nailgrowth Miracle in Wholesome Earth  in the half moon shape at the bottom of my nail and violá an easy, do-it-yourself half moon manicure!


One of the things that I would be cautious about is making sure that the area you paint is very dry before you remove the stickers or you might mess up the edges. You could seal it with a top coat if you want but, I didn't and it was fine. This is an excellent way to spice up your existing manicure and make those nail strips last one week longer if they are holding up to your daily wear and tear!


How do you think it came out?

April 27, 2012: Professional Casual Friday

Even though I have made a pledge to focus more moving forward on upping my professionalism regarding my work wardrobe that doesn't mean that I am going to miss out on a chance to wear jeans to the office! Since the once a month casual Friday is linked to supporting a worthy charity I feel like it is win win for everyone! With all that being said I still made a concerted effort to keep the pointers that had been made in mind when putting together my outfit. How do you think I did? 
  • Topblack and white zig zag blouse, Missoni for Target; black short sleeved sweater, LOFT 
  • Bottomdouble waistband denim trouser tailored by me, LOFT
  • Shoes & Accessoriesred patent leather flats, Payless; silver and pearl earrings, Elizabeth Showers Vintage; Neverfull GM, Louis Vuitton/gift from BF

 

Items from this outfit are previously seen and remixed here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here

Sunday, May 6, 2012

April 26, 2012: Comfy Professional

I was on my feet all day at my big spring recruiting event but, it was totally worth it because it was a success. While I was still exhausted the next morning when I woke up I put together a pretty professional outfit, no? I know I've said it before but, you really can't go wrong with a dress! It's such an easy and comfortable, way to present yourself at work while remaining acceptable professional. I was happy with that!

  • Topblack and gray plaid dress with pockets, LOFT; black cardigan, Merona
  • Shoes & Accessoriesblack ruffle embellished flats, Audrey Brooke via DSW; gray swarovski crystal earrings, Pennyweights; Neverfull GM, Louis Vuitton/gift from BF

Items from this outfit are previously seen and remixed here and here.

April 25, 2012: My Big Day

Awkward conversation number seventy two three had no bearing on how I chose my outfit this day. April 25th was my big spring recruiting event and I was definitely planning on dressing to impress from the get go. I even went another step further and wore my contacts and did my makeup (crazy, I know)! How do you dress at work when you need to set a good example?


Items from this outfit are previously seen and remixed here, here, here, hereherehereherehere, and here

April 24, 2012: The Last Straw

You remember the awkward conversation that I had with my boss, right? O, you don't... catch up! I am sad to report that it happened yet again... She sat me down to inform me that someone had bought my ensemble to her attention and that it was not appropriate. The focus of the conversation was my skinny pants (which I have worn plenty of times before) but, the overall (unspoken) message was that I am personally being held to a different wardrobe standard. Here are some of the highlights of the conversation:
  • The company is a business casual office
    • Formal professional attire only 
  • Skinny pants are not appropriate
  • I should wear more suits
    • I don't have to wear more suits but, cardigan sets are ok
  • Also, nice suits are good
    • But, and nice sweater and shirt are great
Some of these things might seem contradictory but, that is how the conversation went. I'm glad that my boss was very relatively clear about expectations. While my outfit might have prompted someone to feel that it was less than professional it was the last conversation about wardrobe that I want to have. I am going to turn over a new (hopefully not boring) leaf. What does that mean? Basically shopping for more suits. Yes, shopping and suits... We'll see how this goes. At this point, I am throwing their sad excuse for a "dress code" out the window and focusing on dressing to the high standards that I am (apparently) being held to. Goodbye skinny pants... 
  • Top: beige short sleeve scoop neck sweater, GAP (same sweater different color here, here, herehere, here, here, and here) with a tank top underneath for the modesty; black pinstripe blazer, Calvin Klein via SYMS (part of this suit)
  • Bottom: gray really skinny pants, GAP
  • Shoes & Accessoriesblack ballet flats, Xhiliration for Target; silver bead earrings, Tiffany & Co.;  silver watch, Fossil; Neverfull GM, Louis Vuitton/gift from BF

Items from this outfit are previously seen and remixed hereherehereherehere, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here 

Saturday, May 5, 2012

April 23, 2012: Monday WIN

Every Monday I wake up and I want to crawl back in bed and call out sick. Sometimes it's because I'm not feeling well rested, sometimes it's because I know there is a to-do list of apartment related tasks that is calling my names but, most of the time it's because I want to cuddle with BF who doesn't work on Monday... that jerk fantastic person. When I can actually resist the urge to call out sick, which is generally every Monday, I am faced with the challenge of dressing as my best professional self despite my urge to reach for the skinny pants and/or flyaway cardigan.

This past Monday was a total win, I wore normal pants and a blazer! Granted these pants are made of a knit material and this pink blouse is basically a t-shirt but, I would still consider it a win, especially for a Monday. The important thing is that I avoided my Monday crutch pieces and persevered with a fairly professional outfit! Do you have the same problem on Mondays? How do you avoid your go to comfy pieces?

  • Top: pink rosette embellished t-shirt, LOFT (same shirt different color here, here, here, and here); gray plaid blazer, Jones New York via Mom
  • Bottom: black knit pants, New York & Company
  • Shoes & Accessoriesblack ballet flats, Xhiliration for Target; labradorite earrings, Pennyweights; silver watch, Fossil; Neverfull GM, Louis Vuitton/gift from BF

Items from this outfit are previously seen and remixed here, here, here, here,  hereherehereherehereherehere, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here