Thursday, February 28, 2013

Spring Break: The Girl from Ipanema

Ohhhh how I wish I could tell you all I was going on a fabulous spring break, somewhere warm and tropical. I was thinking Ibiza or Ipanema... I could be the girl from Ipanema, you know... tall and tan and young and lovely (YouTube link in case any of you youngsters don't get the reference). In my dreams. 

In college, they give you all this time off for leisure, they forget to remind you that this just doesn't exist in the real world. But, I figured, if I was still at JMU, I would be going somewhere nice and warm in just a few days. So what would I pack?

First, I would arrive off the tiny little plane in this gorgeous linen Island Company via Country Squire Haberdashery frock (bathing suit also underneath for quickest beach action, also Island Company via CSH). They know how to do spring break down south at CSH. Proof in point... see below... 

In case I need to run into town... for some caipirinhas I'd wear this get-up. Oversized Ralph Lauren OCBD and the cuuuuuuutest LP shorts there ever were. Naturally, CSH still has them in this print (one of my absolute faves!) and many, many others. cCm has the LP Callie skirt in this print... needless to say, we're having sister matching day as soon as the temperature hits 70 degrees. 

I've deemed Bonanno's an absolute necessity. CSH has true Nantucket red Boanno's (you know, like the actually red they had at Murray's). 

A girl from Ipanema needs her options. We're talking a Lilly and Vineyard Vines party in your suitcase. 

You also need some clutches of the brightly colored sort and it doesn't hurt if they're monogrammed. Sunnies are a necessity. RayBan clearly being my drug of choice. My next RayBan splurge is coming soon, I can feel it and it will be the fabulous Meteor model. Lip balm, another necessity. Sugar is a favorite in the entire C household. cCm, my mom and I all swear by this stuff. It's great. 

Where are you going on Spring Break? Do tell, I want to live vicariously through you! What are your must-pack items? 

And boys, no worries, I won't leave you out. Stock up on Vineyard Vines colored shorts at CSH because they are on promotion: buy 2 get the third pair free. What colors shall you choose? Let me guide you on this one.. rhubarb or lobster reef to take care of the pink family, Maui blue, and Iguana. Add a grosgrain or needlepoint belt, and you are all set.  

Have a fabulous day! See you in Ipanema!


photos via Tumblr
While the winter white monochromatic look was very "in" this season, I think an all one color ensemble never really goes out of style. While J. Crew tends to take a trendier route, simple pieces in the same hues make a quiet statement! Have you ever done a monochrome look? I am itching to test it out but have yet to find the perfect color combos, although I do sport the "all white" look quite frequently in the summer! It is so effortless and chic! Have a fabulous day! 

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Overdressed? Nonsense.

You know that quote by Oscar Wilde, "You can never be overdressed or overeducated." I couldn't agree with him more. 

I've said in the past that if I could get away with wearing a cocktail dress everyday, I would but this just isn't how the world seems to work (unfortunately). Plus, I would be pretty miserable if I was in a cocktail dress in the 20 degree, freezing rain weather that Pittsburgh seems to be sporting right now. 

Do you ever feel super overdressed? I try to dress casually... in fact, I put effort into dressing casually because dressing "up" is natural for me. 

How do you deal? How do you tone down your dressier outfits? I thought I'd make a list of things that tone down "fancy" looks.
  • Chambray shirt. This instantly makes things look less formal and less stuffy. 
  • Bean boots. Throw your bean boots on with a dress or skirt and you will have an instantly toned down look. 
  • Oversized watch. I wear an oversized watch constantly which I think is a sportier option than wearing a smaller watch. 
  • Ponytail. Don't do anything special with your hair, just pull it up and your outfit will be dressed down (although, I've found the opposite depending on certain outfits). See the above photo, an OOTD from a month ago where I toned it down with bean boots and a pony! 
  • Nix the pearls. Pearls instantly dress up a look. I've said many times how much I love my J. Crew pearl hammock necklace, however, this dresses things up in a big way. It's hard to leave the pearls at home, but sometimes, you gotta do what ya gotta do. 
Big watch and rolled up sleeves, got it! 
  • Roll up your sleeves. This instantly creates a more relaxed look. 
  • Opt for flats. In my opinion, heels are always a good choice (painful, but good) but sometimes they dress up an outfit too much. Flats make your feet comfortable while also lessening the fancy factor. 
  • Jean Jackets. While, I'm not a huge fan of the denim jacket, it has its' place. Throw it on over a more formal dress and you have a great daytime look. 
  • Forgo black. I know, I know... black is a staple color, but sometimes black is just too fancy or formal. One of my favorite outfits is a GapKids silk taffeta full-skirt. I love love love to pair it with a black sweater, black tights, pearls and heels, but the look is too fancy for everyday wear. So how do I change it up? Instead of black, I threw on a deep grey sweater and opted for flats (I couldn't forgo the pearls!!). 

What do you think? Am I missing some great ways to tone down an "over the top" ensemble? Do you ever feel like you are too dressed? Have a fabulous day! 

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Country Squire Haberdashery Does it Again!

Ladies and gents, Country Squire Haberdashery is a little mecca of prep heaven in Florida. See past posts here and here. You know when you walk into a store or are online shopping and there is bound to be something that you don't like or don't "have to have"? Well, this doesn't happen with CSH

What I love even more than their fabulous items? Their customer service is absolutely unparalleled. If you want the best shopping experience, then CSH is you answer. They sent me a bunch of goodies to share with you all. I had so much fun styling the pieces! First up is a casual frock from Vineyard Vines a la CSH: french knot sweater dress. 

First, I'll show you this pretty little navy number on a pro... then, see below on moi! 

I styled it three different ways, but to be honest, this navy dress has endless styling possibilities. Even better? This dress is on promotion for the rest of February. If you are interested, call Kyle at 954-776-5940. Here is a run down of the three looks... 

The cowboy boot look is for fall tailgating. It is the perfect tailgate dress for those later-in-the-season games when you still want to be cute but warm. Just throw a Barbour overtop and you are all set... see that pretty little clutch in my hands? CSH also carries that pretty and let me tell you, it is my new go to! It even matches the silk print on my VV tote! I also really love this for transitioning winter to spring. You know that weather that you don't want to wear a dress in the morning, but by afternoon, you are dying to be in a dress... well this is the perfect compromise!

Look number 2 is my casual, lounging, errand running, coffee sipping, brunch eating outfit. I love that this dress looks great with an oxford layered underneath. It's looking super great with Bonanno's, too! 

The last look is a work look. This is my favorite look because it is so versatile. The jacket makes it work appropriate but it could easily be taken off post-work to transition into a more "fun" look. And I would also just pull out the VV wristlet from my larger handbag and be all set for a night on the town! 

Keeping up with CSH on Facebook definitely has its' benefits. They announce promotions and sales and these are the kind you definitely don't want to miss! 
Is anyone else super excited for the Vineyard Vines Kentucky Derby garb?! cCm is counting down the days-- she is, after all, a Kentucky girl! CSH gave us a fun preview on their Facebook page! 

Here is the information as I have shared in the past... I'd like to plug this right into my GPS, or really a pilot's GPS and head straight for CSH

Country Squire Haberdashery
4404 North Ocean Drive
Lauderdale By The Sea, FL 33308

How would you style the french knot dress? Have you shopped CSH? Remember, the dress is only on promotion through February! Have a fabulous day!

Friday, February 22, 2013

VLOG: Makeup Routine

So clearly, the theme of the week seems to be makeup (see posts here and here), so it only seemed fitting to do a VLOG about my daily makeup routine. I played with the idea to do a Vlog last year but I chickened out. Also, I didn't have a computer that could handle it. Now that I have a new laptop, I am running out of excuses. I've also been into watching YouTube beauty gurus. My favorite to watch is Elle of AllThatGlitters21 (I've been watching her for years!). So it was fun to pretend that I was a super stylish beauty guru. 

I am warning you, this video is 16 minutes long and I just took it on a whim (with the camera on my computer) while getting ready one night before I was meeting my friends for drinks/dinner. It's so long because I didn't feel like trying to edit it down but you can skip through to different parts just to get an idea of my routine in the morning. I usually only take around 10 minutes to do my makeup in the mornings but since I was talking (a lot, sorry) it ended up being a lot longer. 

It's always weird seeing someone speak and see their mannerisms after only reading their blog. You kind of create who they are in your head and then when you see them interact and hear them speak, it kind of gives you a better idea of who they are which is one of the reasons I really wanted to publish this!

Some things I will work on:
Finding somewhere with better lighting.
I am so not a quiet person, but it seems like I need to speak up a bit more.
Talk less (umm.. yeah.. 16 minutes)
Quit moving around so much!
Look less at the screen and more at the camera.

I will try to do a more watchable, 2-5 minute video next time (if there is a next time), I promise! I was thinking of answering some of the questions asked last year as my next VLOG but if you have other ideas you'd rather watch or any updated questions, let me know in the comments (on this post, not on YouTube).

Have a fabulous day! 

Lent Update

One of my favorite things about blogging? Connecting with others, of course! Well, Krista of Southern Shopaholic came up with a fun idea. She connected Tickled Pink, Glitter and Ginghman, herself, and I  because we have all given up shopping for lent. These girls are fun to e-mail back and forth with and it is so great to have a support group! 

So for this week's "no shopping" post, we are each going to update with how it's been going... you know, the last TEN days. Ten days marks the first quarter of lent done... Now, only 3/4th of lent left! Whew! 

Let me start off by saying, I shopped. But I don't think it counts. See, Elizabeth McKay was on RueLaLa the other day and I purchased something in the above print. In my defense, I had RueLaLa credit so I didn't exactly pay for it out of pocket. I am sticking to my story, so I still think I am going strong!! 

To be honest, I need to stay off of RueLaLa because the flash sales are the most tempting. My mentality is "If I don't buy this now, it will be gone." and I think that is really where flash sales can get you. You end up purchasing what you don't need or something you wouldn't have purchased in a normal situation. 

Another barrier I am still trying to get over is that I saw a preview of the Lilly Pulitzer Summer collection that is due out May 1st. It is perfection. I am loving the prints and some of the new styles. Kyle from Country Squire Haberdashery sent me a sneak peek and let me tell you, there are two items that really stood out to me. One of them, I want to pre-order.... really badly. But let me tell you.... I am trying my hardest to hold off until post-Easter... Because if I'm being honest with myself, I don't need it now. Really, I don't need it ever, but I sure do want it! 

Sometimes when I have downtime, I venture to Target (Tar-jay as I lovingly call it) or Marshalls/TJ Maxx. Well, I haven't stepped foot into these stores, because I can't just walk in and out. 

All-in-all, I think what is saving me is the light at the end of the tunnel. My birthday is two weeks after Easter so I know that I will have fun new presents come April and they will be well-deserved. 

If you're wondering about the great Louis debate, nothing has been resolved. I'm still indecisive and have added the thought of purchasing a vintage Chanel bag or a Brooks Brothers handbag into the running as well. Decisions, decisions. Now to get through March. Ugh!! 

This all sounds so trivial, but it really is hard

Did you give up shopping for lent? What do you do to keep your lent promise? Have a fabulous day!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Genius, I Tell Ya!

I just have to share this company that creates "The Map Necklace" ... It's a small gold necklace (also bracelet option) with a rectangular plate that has a snippet of a map engraved on it. The location is marked with a tiny diamond and the back can be personalized. This is pure genius

This would be the absolute perfect gift for a college grad as they have school options or as a moving/housewarming gift or really, anything at all. I have added this atop my wish list. I would love to have bracelets of either JMU or my home in Pittsburgh!!!
Have a fabulous day!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Contour Your Face

If you're on Pinterest (follow me!!) then you have probably seen all of the hype around "contouring" with makeup. Well, it's the hot trend...It's the process behind most celebrity's makeup. You can really get into it (we're talking crazy detailed and tons of makeup) but I take the tips lightly and apply it to my everyday makeup routine. 

Contour Diagram. The white is where you are supposed to apply highlighter (Nars Albatross/YSL Touche Eclat) and the brown is where to apply bronzer (Tarte Amazonian Clay). This is why supermodels have such pronounced cheek bones/etc... well that, and they are supermodels. There are a ton of YouTube tutorials on how to apply the highlight/contour areas.... this is a pretty good one. I think that this is a serious way to apply your make up and it is definitely not for everyday but it's fun to play around with and a useful theory for your everyday makeup application. Mine is so quick and easy, I just dust my highlighter and bronzer in the proper areas. 

So what do you think? Do you practice this method? Have you ever gone all out and tried it with full makeup? Do you just think this is silly? Have a fabulous day!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Makeup Overhaul

Nars Albatross /Nars Larger Than Life Eyeliner in Via Appia /Tarte Amazonian Clay in Park Ave Princess

I recently did a complete overhaul of my makeup, all of my new favorite products are linked above. I am a VIB insider at Sephora, and with that membership, you get a free 45 minute makeover and 10% off your purchase that day. I had just had my first trip to the dermatologist because I had been breaking out and I had to throw a lot of my make up away. I have always had almost perfect skin. I get a zit here and there but recently, I have had a bout of acne... It turns out my makeup and skincare regimen was the cause.

My makeup artist, Colleen, was the best. I brought in the makeup I already had and told her what I liked and didn't like. I then explained to her that I needed only makeup that was non-comedogenic. She did a full makeover... meaning she used way more products on my face than I would use on a day-to-day basis, but that was part of the fun! She matched the colors so they worked perfectly with my skin tone and taught me how to properly apply things... and even a bit about contouring with makeup (it's apparently a hot trend in the makeup world)... See tomorrow's post for more info!

Well, if you tend to break out, chances are, it is because your makeup is clogging your pores. Non-comedogenic makeup doesn't contain pore clogging ingredients so it is better for your skin. I also learned that washing your face with an acne wash is not necessarily the best. I switched to plain old Neutrogena liquid soap and it has already made a world of a difference.

It is also important to note that things like primers contain silicone which is something that clogs pores. It is best to only use primer when absolutely necessary. I switched to Tarte for face makeup. Tarte is all natural and non-comedogenic. I also use Sephora mineral powder for an even tone (most mineral makeups are non-comedogenic)

For concealer, I have the Smashbox Camera Ready concealer and also the YSL Touche Eclat. Both great products, although, YSL is not a miracle and totally not worth the $40ish price tag. I have been neglecting to even use any concealer (except for under my eyes) because my skin has become so clear and healthy in just the past week.

My mascara is from Target/Drugstores... it's around $10 and I swear it is the best. I used to use Maybeline but they discontinued my favorite so I made a switch and fell in love with L'Oreal Voluminous False Fiber mascara. I also got a tube of YSL mascara while I was at Sephora but nothing compares to the $10 L'Oreal.

Golden Smokey Eyes... I never wear eyeshadow so it was a fun treat! 
Remember when I had a brow moment? Well, Smashbox has taken care of my brows and I am SO obsessed. Seriously, this product makes my boring brows look model-esque.

I also added some lip colors into my repertoire  I keep both in my handbag. The YSL red for when I'm feeling bold and the Nars Autumn Leaves for a natural, warm tone. I also keep a retractable lip brush in my bag for application of bright reds because they are so hard to apply with just the stick.

Apologies for the novel of the post, but I just had to share all of my new-found makeup knowledge! I'm thinking this might be a great way to do a VLOG without feeling silly-- an everyday makeup tutorial. Because we all know, my original Vlogging intentions never happened. Oops!

Have a fabulous day!

Friday, February 15, 2013

RueLaLa is Tempting Lenten Abilities!

Lent is already hard... 

Jack Rogers and Longchamp on RueLaLa today at 11:00am ET. If you need an invite, click here

You can keep up with my growing "Wish List" as I refrain from shopping for the next 40 days. It's growing quite large and more extravagant by the minute. Help!
And, have you seen the photos that Elizabeth McKay posted on their Facebook page yesterday?! IN LOVE! That tunic is perfect and the retro cut of the navy and green top is screaming my name... really, I can hear it!

Something tells me this is going to be a long 40 days. 

Come April 1st, I have a feeling I'm going to resemble these illustrations by Inslee. Happy Friday! 

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!!

Wishing you the happiest day filled with love, chocolate, and plenty of pink! 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Lent: the 40 day challenge

If you are a practicing Christian, then for you, the 40-day period of Lent has started. I usually don't give anything up for Lent... I've tried in the past to give up Diet Coke and in high school I always tried to give up sweets and chocolates, but let me tell you, it never works for me!
This year, I have decided to give up shopping. For me, this is HUGE. This will be the challenge of all challenges. But you know what, I figure 40 days is not that long. It's not even 2 months!! My terms are strict. No shopping means not even purchasing a new Essie color at Target. Of course, if I need to buy a gift of some sort, that won't count. But I am literally not going to buy a single thing. I am doing this because I want to test myself and because I don't need a single thing. I love shopping and I love finding great deals... I think this will be hardest when something fun comes up on RueLaLa or Gilt... I will have to restrain myself. 

I wanted to post about this because now that Summer Wind readers know I am doing this, you can hold me accountable. No shopping until Easter (which is March 31st)!!!!

Do you think I can do it?! Are you giving something up for lent? I always think that instead of giving something up for lent, doing something nice for someone for the 40 days is a great idea. Whether it is just holding the door open or paying for someone's coffee at Starbucks, there is always something small you can do to brighten someone's day! Wish me luck, I'm going to need it!!! Have a fabulous day! 

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Healthy Eating

So, I guess it's kind of funny that I'm posting about healthy eating on a day that is called Fat Tuesday but I've been asked several times through e-mails and Tumblr requests to post about my diet. To be honest, I'm not really one to diet or watch what I eat. If I feel like I'm gaining an "lb" or two, then I kind of edit my diet for the week and that usually works. However, I do try to eat healthy for the most part. I not only do this for weight reasons, but also for the feeling that you get when you eat healthy. I can honestly tell that when I eat healthy, it makes my immune system better, my skin clearer and it makes me feel more energetic. You can read more about my eating and exercise routines here, here, here, and here

In the "real world" I have found that eating on-the-go or sitting at a desk is where you will eat most of your meals.  At times, this makes packing things logistically challenging. If you are eating on-the-go, then you have to pack something that's not messy and can be eaten quickly. If you are sitting at your desk, you have more freedom. I almost always pack my lunch. It not only saves money, but it is the healthy way to go. 

For breakfast, I usually stick to vanilla yogurt with Kashi Go Lean almond cereal.... or I occasionally indulge in one of my guilty pleasures. I have never really eaten yogurt until now. It is high in calcium and Greek yogurts have protein which will make you full... the Kashi is high in fiber too! I actually take the box of Kashi and split it down into around 8 bags so I can grab and go in the morning. I am always looking for time savers like this since I am not a morning person. If you're not a yogurt person and you want to become one, I warn you, they are high in calories. The one picture above is 170 calories which I find to be a lot. I just recently found the Dannon Light and Fit brand of vanilla yogurt which only has 80 calories and no fat.... Dannon will be my go-to now! I also usually have a piece of fruit whether it be an apple or banana and sometimes switch to oatmeal when I want something warm. Oh yeah, and coffee... I have about a billion cups every day. I know, I'm addicted. But also note that I drink black coffee with just a sprinkle of Splenda so it is "healthy".

For lunch, I do a lot of fruit. Clementines, grapes, strawberries, bananas, raspberries, etc. Then I usually stick to something quick and easy. To be honest, I really like Uncrustables and Easy Mac which is not really very healthy, but they are so quick and easy and also easily pack-able. Other times, my mom makes an extra serving for dinner and I'll pack that up for lunch. 

For snacking I eat:

  • Peel cheese (usually the reduced fat mozzarella kind)
  • Latte + fruit
  • Carrots + Hummus
  • Chocolate Chip granola bar
  • Small salad
  • 100 calorie packs
  • Fruit snacks 
I completely realize that what I eat for breakfast and lunch is super childish. The other day, I went to the grocery store and purchased Uncrustables, bananas, Kashi, fruit snacks, and yogurt, and the checkout woman says "oh your stocking up on things to make lunches" and I said "yes"... Then a few moments later, she looks at me and says "ohh, these are for your lunch?".... Meaning she thought I was making lunch for MY KIDS! This is the second time this kind of comment has been made to me at a grocery store. Read about my 22 year old dilemmas, here

I also feel like I need to mention that I really do have a more sophisticated palate than what I made it out to look like. I mean I literally will eat anything and everything (except for mushrooms and goat cheese... ew). My favorite foods are filet mignon (cooked extra rare), salmon, crab, lobster, and sushi of any kind... so I'm not always eating like a child... just for breakfast and lunch ;). 

What do you eat for breakfast/lunch? Do you try to keep it healthy? Any snack recommendations? Have a fabulous day! 

Man's BFF

"The one absolutely unselfish friend that a man can have in this selfish world, the one that never deserts him, the one that never proves ungrateful or treacherous, is his dog...He will kiss the hand that has no food to offer, he will lick the wounds and the sores that come encounter with the roughness of the world. When all other friends desert, he remains." -George G Vest

I'm a dog person, are you?! Love my bff, Mac oh so much!! 


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