My Summer “Wish List”

Let me get this out of the way, because I hate preachy posts that make me feel like I shouldn’t want stuff.  TRUST ME, I have a list three miles long of the things that I want, and NONE OF THEM are cheap.  So making you feel like I’m all altruistic and have sworn off shopping would be a MAJOR miscommunication.  However this post is not about stuff.  It’s my grown up summer wish list, which doesn’t have as nice a ring to it as the whole grown up Christmas list, I realize, but it’s not Christmas and I’m frickin hot.

My Summer Wish List*
(*does not include all the stuff I want, I’ll hit you up later Santa Claus.)

  1. Have Fun
    I love how as a grown up, I have to like, purpose to have fun.  What the literal heck, you guys???  As a kid, all you want is to be a grown up so you can do whatever you want whenever you wanna do it.  Then you become a grown up, and you realize you can basically never ever do what you want because you have kids, you’re not independently wealthy, and, oh yeah, there are other people in this world who need you to do stuff for them.  One of my goals for the summer is to have fun.  Both the kind of fun that involves me shopping by myself and the kind that involves doing family stuff with my husband and kids…and trying desperately to ENJOY it instead of stressing about the fact that the kids are TOUCHING EVERYTHING.  Wish me luck, people.
  2. Be Wise, But Worry Less
    I like to shop.  Every time I intentionally try to “spend less” I end up feeling restricted mostly due to how I was raised, and I end up impulse buying something just so that I don’t feel trapped.  Uhhh…that’s not wise.  I find that for me, when I intend to “be wise” with how I shop, it makes for healthy purchasing habits.  I buy the things I would be sad I missed out on if I was strictly just trying to save money…and I don’t buy the things I would have bought just to make myself feel better.  And the second half of this whole thing goes along with this.  Worry less…meaning, when I’m being wise with my purchases, I can stop worrying about spending needlessly.  I want to enjoy the all the fun I’m trying to let myself have after all, right??
  3. Give Myself A Break
    I put a tremendous amount of pressure on myself.  To lose weight, to keep the house clean, to get my kids in bed exactly at the same time every night…and inevitably something gets in the way of any number of the things I’m attempting to control…and then I feel like I failed.  So this summer, I’d like to give myself more rest time.  Time to read a book, time to not think about any of the things I “need” to do, and time to recharge.  I often fill up that time with other things, and then feel rather burnt out on life.  That’s no good for anyone.

This dress was kind of one of those “I’d have been bummed if I missed it” purchases.  I popped into New With Tags in Paso Robles and this Raga LA dress was just hanging there, staring me in the face.  It’s so lightweight and flowy and makes for one of those great summer outfits that makes you feel so dressed up without being hot and uncomfortable.  The choker is from Amanda of The Desert Mermaid and the bolo is from my good friend Jessica from Hillbillygypsyboots.  The lace bralette is from Urban Outfitters, but you can find these babies almost anywhere now including Target!

Whatever’s on your wish list for the summer, I wish you great luck getting it or getting it done!



Fashion Feelings: Boots or pants?

I love multitasking.  And by “multitasking”, I mean, doing things while watching tv because I clearly love watching tv.  I’m watching it right now as I type this.  So if I begin typing names of characters on The Office, you’ll know that I’m not having a seizure, I’m just “multitasking”.  See?  Totally doing two things at once, making the most of my time.  I wish I had something I could drink through a straw so I could do three things at once…must work on this.

I know that as a woman, I should be a boss at multitasking.  And in some ways, I am.  Like, I can think about everything that I need to accomplish in the next 43 minutes while refilling water cups, picking up dirty laundry, and most likely drinking coffee.  Also, I’m super good at worrying about 57 things at once.  Does that count as multitasking??  Dang it.  Here’s what I’m NOT good at.  Writing while the tv is on.  (doing that now.  obviously, not well.  the tv is winning.)  Counting while people are talking to me.

Oh I’m sorry, did I say counting while people are talking to me?  I meant COUNTING, PERIOD.  Yesterday I ran into a friend I haven’t seen in a while, during the exact moment when I was trying to pay for my thrift store haul.  You can imagine how that went down.  I asked the poor cashier about four times what my total was again, and oh, wait, did you say “SEVENTY THREE CENTS?” one more time…I already forgot what you literally just said…  So yeah, in a lot of ways I kind of fail at multitasking.

One thing I really do well though, is wear all my stuff at once.  I like to refer to this as “multitasking”.  Put on all the things I like at once, wear them proudly, and when people ask “who are you supposed to be?” I say “a girl who likes clothes and doesn’t play favorites with everything in her closet.”

You know what else is fun?  That these boots kind of double as pants.  Now I’d never wear them AS pants, but you catch my drift right?  Yeah.  Why not have my clothing multitask too!?

I’m going to get back to doing all the things while napping with my eyes open now.  Must. Have. Coffee.

Good luck multitasking today.  It’s not recommended without caffeine.  ;)


*boots are One Teaspoon, kimono is Wildfox, shorts are Levis, tank is Target!

The Five Stages Of Buying Mass Produced Clothing

You know the drill.  You walk into Target/H&M/Forever 21/Zara (take your pick of any mass produced big name box store) and you go through the five stages of box store shopping.  1. Guilt: “I should be buying local and not buying mass produced stuff!” 2. Elation: “OH MY GOSH THIS SWEATER IS SO CUUUUUUTE!” 3. Trepidation: “Okay, but doesn’t EVERYONE ELSE have this top??” 4. Mad Rush of Emotions: “BUT DO YOU SEE HOW CHEAP IT IS???”  5. Succombing To The Sweet Scent of Deals: “I’m buying it.  ALL.”

You guys, I started a clothing line, so I have my own feelings about fast fashion.  Now that I know how much time, effort, and money goes into making real clothing, it is frustrating how quickly Zara can pump out zillions of things before I can even get half a piece of clothing done.  That being said though, I go through all the five stages just like everyone else.  And yes, I usually cave in, and buy all the deals.  And nope, I don’t regret it.  So let’s talk about how to sort of…make it all better somehow.

How do you buy something at a box store and NOT look like every other blogger/mom/girl who loves shopping out there?  I’m just gonna throw out some ideas that might help you look at things differently and encourage a healthy mix of small batch AND big box store shopping.  Because let’s face it.  Almost no one can steer completely clear of the biggies.

  1. Choose wisely.  When shopping at one of the mass produced places, you must try and avoid the strong magnetic allure of “It’s 75% off so I HAVE TO BUY IT!”  Just because it’s uber cheap, doesn’t mean you NEED it.  Stop, breathe, and ask yourself if it’s as good as what you already have OR if it meets a need in your wardrobe.  I know the madness is easy to get into.  But do a “final edit” when you get to the register and lose whatever you have doubts about.
  2. Think about how you’ll wear it.  This is when you get to distinguish yourself from the hundreds of other people who are currently buying that exact same piece of clothing (because, you’ve got great taste, so of course other people will want it!).  This is the FUN part.  Plus, it’ll help you decide whether or not you will actually wear what you’re gonna buy.  Think about pairing this top or dress (or whatever it is) with vintage accessories.  Or maybe take a handmade item or unique pair of shoes and put them with it…basically mix in your piece that EVERYONE may have with pieces that NO ONE ELSE has.  No way on earth you’re gonna look like everyone else now, is there? :)
  3. Weigh your options.  Let’s be honest.  Sometimes, Target and Zara have great on trend pieces at a fraction of the price, and a fraction of the price is really what is most affordable and practical for that particular thing.  However, there are also times when it really makes more sense to get something REAL instead.  This is really dependent on what it is you’re looking at.  For example, say you’ve been eying a handmade pair of bell bottoms on Instagram or Etsy that are just stunning.  They are custom fit, hand dyed, and exactly what you’ve been looking at.  Plus, you have been following the maker on social media and you know her dog’s name and what kind of coffee she likes and a lot of little endearing details about her life.  Then you walk into Target and you see a somewhat similar pair of bell bottoms.  They don’t fit quite as well, but they’re cute and about one quarter of the cost of the others.  Okay, I can firmly say (within reason, like really without knowing what your budget is, so please don’t get into debt or something because of me!) that this is one of those scenarios where it’s better to spend the dough.  You get what you’ve been drooling over, you support the maker, and also, you get pants that will LAST.  When people buy things from me, I literally almost cry.  That’s how much it means to me.  So when you buy from a maker, you are MAKING THEIR WEEK.
  4. Buy sparingly.  I am consistently drawn to the clothing section at Target.  And Zara?  Get out of town…I would be in TROUBLE if I had one anywhere near me.  But no matter how insanely much I want to just buy buy buy clothes when I get to Target, I force myself to only buy occasionally.  Because to be quite honest, the things I buy from Target often end up being my least favorite things…the things that end up going to the thrift store.  With the exception of the things I have chosen wisely and put more thought into my purchase.  This helps me to curb my appetite when I get there and just want to binge.

That being said, I have made a few Target clothing purchases recently, and those are the first I’ve made in close to a year!

I tried on this jumpsuit and I had to have it.  It’s just so lovely and spring-y and I think it looks way nicer than the average Target pieces.  I decided however to pair it with this vintage denim duster I got from a friend’s second hand store, Revamped The Collection, and some vintage jewelry and boots.  That way, it looks way different from the way I’ve seen it worn on Instagram already!  So you see?  You CAN have your cake and eat it too!!  Unless, however you’re on a low carb diet like me, in which case you cannot either have cake or eat it.

You catch my drift.
Happy Wednesday

Trending: Friday Five Roundup

Well here we are again, it’s Friday!  And a top o’ the afternoon to ya!  Hope you’re not getting pinched and finding your bucket o’ gold and all that green goodness!  Enjoy your corned beef and cabbage and get ready for some fun news for your weekend!

Shamrock Shakes CAN Be Healthy

In honor of the greenest of all days and the fact that typically green foods are GOOD for you, HERE is a fabulous option for a festive dessert that won’t add needless chemicals or sugar to your life.  Because why not feel good about desserts??

New Target Collections…Because I Always Gotta Look

I saw on the Today Show today that Victoria Beckham is doing a line for Target, so naturally I was curious about it.  To be honest, I’m not like crazy excited about anything I see, but there is a lot of super cute stuff so it’s worth a look!  HERE is a complete slideshow so you can see for yourself if there’s something you just gotta have from the new collection.

You MUST Watch This Genius New Comedy On NBC

You guys.  I’m SUCH a sucker for a new show, and comedies are just the most fun.  I watched the first two episodes of Trial and Error on NBC and oh my gosh.  Best new show.  Not only do I love John Lithgow in everything I’ve seen him in (Winston Churchill, anyone?), but the entire cast and premise of this show is just sheer genius.  Watch it…you just gotta.

The Jeans…No One Needs

Say…WHAAAAA???  Yeah…I’m kind of baffled by these, er, interesting creations.  But, if you MUST have them, HERE’S a link for you.  At least your knees will be waterproof right?  That’s something!

Make Sure Your Shows Made The Cut

Come on NBC PLEASE renew Timeless for me!!!!  Check HERE to see what’s made the cut for this fall so far!!!

Hope your shows made the list!  Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Trending: Friday Five Roundup

It’s Friday!  Oh wait…I have kids…so what does this all mean?  Whether you are Netflixing, mom-ing, or working for the weekend, we could all use a few fun things to start off our weekend right.  I’ll try to roundup some interesting and happy thoughts for ya ;)

Juicy Couture, How I’ve Missed You (get outta my closet and onto my body)

You’re either gonna love me or hate me for my closeted Juicy love.  I got all my old Juicy’s in a box (and I may buy them at thrift stores when I see them…) and I’ve just been ITCHING to bust them out again.  Thanks to this popsugar article I feel like I’m not alone.  Also, regardless of how you feel about the iconic tracksuits, if you haven’t read the book by the creators of Juicy, “The Glitter Plan“, please do so.  It’s one of my favorite books ever and fashion lovers out there will enjoy the heck outta that book.

Target Makes More Clothes That Don’t Look Like They’re From Target

I mean, they just get better and better.  And while I obviously prefer to buy handmade or from a small company or individual, the reality is we all gonna buy stuff from Target now and then.

Like THESE pants, which I clearly *need*.

And THESE booties, because like, are you for reals that these are from Target??

New Netflix Shows About Fashion.  Yes, Please.

I have no knowledge of the book this is based on, full disclosure.  However, anytime there’s a new show about fashion or the fashion industry, I will watch it! Plus, I want that outfit.  Obvi.  Until this comes out, I’ll be checking out Versailles on Netflix, since I’m having withdrawls after finishing The Crown.

Major Shoutout To The Savior of My Kid’s Lunches

My kids aren’t allowed to bring any kind of peanut or nut butter into their classroom, and when your kids are so picky like my kids are…this can be a majorly stressful restriction!  Thank my lucky stars, I got them hooked on Sunbutter as well as peanut butter.

I put it on their crackers, I make sunbutter balls with honey and oats and chocolate chips…just beware that you must INFORM the teacher that your child has sunbutter, otherwise you may get a phone call halfway through the day (speaking from personal experience!).

Who’s Grammy Performance Will Bring The House Down?

My money’s on Gaga, because I’ve never seen her do anything halfway and after that Super Bowl flying off the stage stunt I think she’s the sure fire winner of “most amazing and riveting performance”.  See for yourself who’s gonna rock the house this weekend.


Fashion Feels: Black Friday

Black Friday.  It’s like a drug for me.  And yet, I cannot get a single friend to go shopping with me on this holiest of all days.  I mean, it’s literally the most crazy, fun, buzziest shopping day of the year.  The day when I actually get grandma to babysit the kids so that my husband and I can go out nice and early and DO THIS SHIZ.  Yes, I am a serious, but really more fun, Black Friday shopper.

Sure, sure, most of my best shopping is done from small businesses, thrift stores, and vintage shops.  Absolutely do I believe in supporting these places FIRST and FOREMOST.  I mean, I OWN a small business now for crying out loud, so I must also believe in and support them.  But there’s just something about Black Friday that I just LOVE.  It’s like a club.  You go out early, dressed in your sweats (the cute ones of course), get a giant coffee, and you see each other and nod in silent solidarity.  We are the hardcore.  The ones willing to sacrifice an hour or two (or more if you’re one of the crazies who goes out at midnight) of precious sleep to score a DVD for a mere $5.  Does it matter that no one really buys DVDs anymore?  No.  It’s the fact that you are buying an actual MAJOR MOTION PICTURE for five buckaroos that gives you that little thrill and keeps you going.  That, and the giant coffee you’re toting around.  Um, refill please.

Before I move on to my day, which I will try and document with photos that are worthy of looking at, let me give you some background.  I am an only child.  You probably know this already, but I need you to know it for this post.  I was a very social person from day one, born to two people who would rather stay at home or go bird watching than go to a mall or a grocery store.  Yes, you heard me right. BIRD WATCHING.  Now this may be like totes hipster and cool and all these days, but guys…just no.  I wanted to be where the action was.  I would beg my mom to go somewhere, ANYWHERE (and NOT the library or the used bookstore, and if you knew my mom you’d understand why…ten hours later we are still at the xerox machine…) and yet, they’d usually stay home.  Boredom was my middle name.  My dad would balk at the idea of going Christmas shopping on Christmas Eve and I would poke and prod until he’d drive me down there just so I could be where all the humans were.  My Christmases were me, getting toys, and then basically waiting until all my friends were done with their Christmases so I could actually PLAY with my new stuff.

Get some kleenex ready, because this is some good stuff right here.  I remember on Christmas Day, I would literally sit on the back of the couch, looking out the huge window in the front of the house we lived in.  I would watch the house down the street, where four siblings lived, receive car after car after car filled with PEOPLE getting out.  I remember wishing so hard that it hurt that it could be me over there.  Because…I LIKE BEING AROUND PEOPLE.  Honestly, I could buy like one thing and have the best black Friday ever.  Because the shopping is not even the best part of the day for me.  It’s just the fact that if I know where all of my kind will be on any given day, I will make it a point to be there.  It makes me feel like I’m part of the buzz.

SO HAPPY BLACK FRIDAY!  Here’s my day…broken down by steps for you! :)

Step one.  Set the alarm, MAKE myself leave that dream I was having and get in the shower, because, $9.99 jacket at H&M.  Shower, brush teeth, makeup, dress in layers, eggs, no coffee (no time).

Step two. Park, and jump out to claim my jacket and find a white blazer (SUCCESS!) and whatever other goodies may be on sale.  There are like four people in the store (thank you sleepy small town) so I am tempted to over dramatically scream GET OUTTA MY WAY and act like I’m warding off vicious shoppers, but because I’ve had no coffee yet, the amusement must stay imaginary.

Step three.  Get COFFEE FOR THE LOVE OF GOD.  Take a weird selfie in an alley way where a dog is watching me because…well, I don’t know why there was a dog eating something in an alley, but I’m too tired to answer this strange question.

Step four.  Head to Target, where all the people actually are to hunt for doorbuster, and SURPRISE! get sucked into the clothing section because with the Cartwheel app everything is 45% off.  So…clothes shopping it is.

Step five.  Go back downtown for some green juice and a sitting break.  Then hit up some random stores and find a place to eat some FOOD.  Ahhhhhhh…more caffeine.  Suck down that iced tea and THEN remember to take a photo of it (too tired to be an awesome instagrammer today).

Step six.  Take an awkward selfie in the bathroom, because the bathroom of this restaurant coordinates with my pants, and then take a photo of my husband who is always posing weird for photos in hopes that I will one day pay attention to the weird thing he is doing and actually take a photo of him instead of me.

Step seven.  Go home, drink more coffee, listen to the kids squawk in their cribs during “nap time” and asses the spoils.  Success, not much money spent, and heck to the yes I got that $9.99 jacket.  Now I’m ready for GILMORE GIRLS REVIVAL (!!) and bed.  Ahhhhh bed.

I love Black Friday.  Even the fact that the movie we were gonna see today was sold out, nothing can ruin my Black Friday buzz.

Sleep tight all you shopping warriors.  We done good.



Trending: Friday Five Roundup

Okay you guys.  I’m not one for self promotion.  But I am however a VERY EXCITABLE PERSON!!! (can you tell?) So this Friday, I have something really special that I’m just too excited NOT to share with you!  It’s a special edition of the Friday five for ya.  Because I’m popping champagne and smiling like a joker (without the creepy factor obvi).


I am so happy to say that after a loooooooong time of working on this, things are finally getting going.  I’m so excited, freaked out, and just, well, thankful that I’m getting to do this.  All the people I get to work with locally on producing the pieces are just amazing human beings and all of YOU are too!  (and I made my first official sale, so dang.  I’m just humbled and excited y’all!)

I love denim, and who says it’s not dressy? agrees with me, and I love this simple article with five ways to wear denim to a holiday party this year!  Being in California, “dressy” is kind of a misnomer here.  So anytime I see things like this, I love the inspiration because any party I go to around here is guaranteed pretty much to not be black tie.  Get inspired, because denim is HOT.

Starbucks Christmas cups are here, so people, let’s get happy.

Good news everyone.  You can have your coffee in a holiday cup SANS DRAMA.  (“would you like room for cream and a side of MAJOR DRAMA?” -Starbucks employee, circa December 2015)  Gosh, aren’t they pretty??  Gotta go collect em all…

I went to Target today and, well, it took all the restraint in the world…

not to buy everything!  Because…CHRISTMAS HAS ARRIVED!  Be prepared to buy every furry, cute, sparkly, whiskery, plaid thing that you see…only to get home and wonder how many houses you are decorating and why you needed the entire alphabet spelled out in fur letter ornaments.  Because you just do, right?

Thanksgiving for special dietary needs…made simple.

I’m a huge fan of and right now she has a full downloadable thanksgiving menu complete with shopping list and all…and it’s all FREE!!  It’s healthy, her recipes tend to be easier than a lot of the paleo/gluten free/health focused recipes floating out there, and, well, anything that simplifies your holidays is a win/win!

Okay, here’s hoping you are feeling full of HOPE, life, and know that you are loved.  Because you sure are :)



Trending: Rebranding Existing Stores

Isn’t interesting how certain stores can thrive for a while…and then one day…almost disappear into nothing?  Let me name a few stores and I bet you’ll know what I’m talking about.  Gap.  J.Crew. Abercrombie & Fitch.  So, yeah, those are definitely still around and well known.  However, at one point in time, your responses to those brand names may have been a bit more enthusiastic.  Not so very long ago, these were the “cool kid stores”.  And now, these three brands are struggling to make it in a very different shopping climate.

A & F Quarterly, Christmas Issue 2000: A Very Emerson Christmas [Abercrombie and Fitch] by Weber, Bruce
Once upon a time, all the coolest and most elite were shrouded in Gap, A&F, or J.Crew.  But times have changed.  It’s interesting to read about what these brands are trying to do and also just to ponder why this is happening…and I think there are a myriad of reasons to be quite honest.

These brands rose to popularity at a time when it was cool to wear brands.  Logo tees were it and your status had to do with that A&F polo shirt, those Gap painter’s jeans, or that J.Crew jacket.  These things were synonymous with “the in crowd”.   Now, we are living in an era where it’s cooler to wear things from a thrift store or handmade from Etsy than it is to go drop cash at the local Gap.  It seems that now people not only care more about styles than about brands (like whether it came from Target or J.Crew, no one cares), but also where their clothes originated from.  There are more people who want to know where their clothing was made and how it was made.  Ethical fashion is becoming more, er, fashionable.  And another thing…when these stores were “in” (think of the show Friends when Joey said: “damn Gap on every corner!”) there really wasn’t Zara, Asos, or H&M in the United States.  Not to mention that when Target rebranded themselves as THE place to shop for in-style clothing, that delivered a near deathly blow to many of the stores who had little to no competition prior to this.

These retailers aren’t taking this lying down.  Abercrombie actually went so far as to delete their entire Instagram feed to start over again with a new image.  JCrew hired the former fashion director of Madewell to give their clothes a new lifespan.  Gap has struggled with logo changes gone awry, missed trends, and  general lackluster overall choices…only time will tell whether they can change the downward trend in sales and survive the new era of shopping and style choices.

So far, seems like JCrew has done an amazing job of keeping things fresh and even channeling Gucci a little bit in their new line!  My bet is they will have no problem coming back from decline with bright flying colors.  The other two…we will have to see won’t we!

Have you looked at the Abercrombie website recently?  I looked out of curiosity and it definitely was different from the typical look I would expect from them.  My take on their new site is that they are trying to hit a lot of trends all at once, and figure out who they are.  I get it.  We all go through awkward phases sometimes…and hopefully they’ll come out of it with a new and fun identity!

Happy Monday


Advice in Style: How To Dress Like A “Have”

First of all I want to clear something up.  I don’t like the whole idea of the “haves” and the “have nots”…this post is most definitely not meant to reinforce this concept!  But, if you keep reading, hopefully you’ll get my point (and have some fun too!).

I wrote an article a little while ago about how Vogue attacked fashion bloggers and attempted to minimize their value using some choice words that seemed a bit more like something you’d say to a close friend instead of making them public to the world.  If you want to get my whole take on what they said, please read the post!  This whole thing got me thinking about the fashion industry as a whole.  So, I love fashion.  Obviously.  I want to go to fashion week, see the famous runway shows, and own some couture of my own.  I love it.  However (you can see the big “but” right?) there are some things about the fashion industry that aren’t so nice.  Fashion has always been an indicator, and sometimes dictator of classes.  I mean, it used to be actually illegal for people of certain classes and incomes to wear some styles of clothing.  That way, you could look at a person and determine how much money they make!  Can you believe this?  I mean, talk about a horrible and judgmental world to live in where you could be thrown in jail for wearing a dress that didn’t fit your wallet size.  Yuck.  Maybe things have changed and progressed quite a bit since then.  But we are still not immune from this whole “judge a book by it’s cover” thing.  I think we can often still size someone up based on their outfit pretty darn easily.  But now, since it’s legal to wear anything really, we can pull the wool over people’s eyes much easier!

Years ago there was this old hippie guy who worked at my local Trader Joe’s.  He was super opinionated, kind of funny, and liked to kind of talk at you and spout out his political thoughts and whatever was on his mind while he was ringing up your groceries.  I rather enjoyed it.  I would just listen, nod my head, and bag up my own groceries while he told me all the problems with the world and all that jazz.  After a couple months of this, he stopped talking and asked me a question!  He asked me: “so what do you do?”  I answered him (I was a full time worship pastor at the time at my church) and when I gave my answer, he literally did a double take.  He looked so surprised.  “What?” he said, shocked at my answer “oh wow…I thought you were like one of those super rich San Luis girls who…” (his answer trailed off into a lot of things I don’t remember, but were most definitely not things that describe me.  He then proceeded to tell me that because of my clothing, how I looked when I came into the store, he had made these determinations about me.  Yep.  He thought I was a “have”.  I remember what I was wearing that day.  I wear wearing a Juicy Couture dress I had got second hand and a furry pair of slippers from Target that people would literally stop their cars, roll down their windows, and ask me where I had gotten my “boots”.  I think you can tell where this whole thing is going!

It’s not the point I’m making, but hey, let’s attempt to stop sizing each other up by our clothes, ok?  I do it all the time, and I am working on NOT doing that.  I’ve been falsely judged because of what I wear lots of times.  The point I’m really making, is that we never should feel “less than” or shut out of the fashion industry just because we aren’t a mega celebrity with deep pockets and a trust fund.  You can look like a “have” (and BE a “have” just because, hey, you’ve got what matters right??) without spending a lot of dough.  Here are some tips for ya, in case you need them :)

Second hand stores and thrift stores are always, always worth a look.  I know many of you already know this, but I cannot even tell you some of the stuff I’ve seen at thrift stores for just a few dollars.  I mean, just because something was expensive or designer, doesn’t mean that whoever is selling it there knows that.  You will often see stuff worth hundreds or even thousands of dollars sitting right next to stuff from Old Navy.
Get out of town.  There’s something about going places you don’t normally go to shop that makes you find great stuff.  Don’t be afraid to drive to neighboring towns or go to the “rich” areas to check their thrift stores.  It’s like trick-or- treating in the neighborhoods who give out king size candy bars instead of just staying close by and getting a zillion “fun size” ones.  Fun size, my ass.
Stay off the beaten path. When you’re in a store like Target, steer clear of the women’s section.  This sounds super not intuitive, which is why it works.  If I were to put together a complete outfit from a store like Target (and trust me, I go there enough to know what I’m talking about) and I wanted it to look expensive, here’s what I would do.  Shoes: slipper section (especially around fall…you never KNOW what furry boot-like treasures await you), Top: boys section (graphic tee), men’s undershirt, or women’s pajama section for a button down pj top, Jacket: men’s or boy’s section for a blazer, Jeans: women’s section, but take a pair of scissors and a razor and modify them, Accessories: little girl’s section.  Do you catch my drift?  Part of why this works is that if you have a Target in your town, every woman wears stuff from the women’s section.  Therefore, if you shop around the women’s section, no one will know that what you have on came from Target.  Plus, I’m gonna say this again.  Those furry slippers got me more compliments than almost anything I think I have ever bought.  And they were like $10.
Be true to yourself.  Don’t buy or wear stuff that you don’t love just because it’s a designer name.  This will never get you anywhere in feeling great about yourself because you won’t feel great in your clothes.  Confidence in one’s outfit goes a long way to conveying that you love what you are wearing and who you are.  So if you don’t love it, don’t wear it no matter what the original price tag is.  Plus, sometimes you’ll find stuff that was expensive originally marked down at second hand stores simply because…it’s ugly.  Designers have “misses” too and often those are the things that people buy, regret, then get rid of.  Make sure that it’s a good find and not just a “used to be expensive” find.

And here it is.  Proof that I don’t iron my outfits when I probably should.  (I hate ironing!)  I love this outfit.  My top is a thrifted silk pajama shirt, jeans are old Levi’s I distressed myself, and my shoes cost $5 at H&M.  You could easily find an outfit like this in a magazine for about 32 times what I actually paid for this.  Looks can be deceiving, you guys :)

I don’t care what you have, you are a “have”.  Remember that.  No more keeping up with the Joneses, keeping up with myself is work enough!

Happy Monday

Advice In Style: How to Dress Like You Have Your Sh** Together

There are times when I’m out and about and someone will say something to me or I catch another girl checking out my outfit and it dawns on me.  She thinks I have my sh** together.  Woah.  That’s crazy.  Because…uhhhh I’m not one of “those girls” who’s got it all down.  Hold up a minute…do “those girls” actually even exist, IRL??  So here’s the deal.  I figure, if I can fool ’em all, SO CAN YOU!  Let me give you some food for thought.  When you see a girl on instagram who makes you feel badly about themselves, this is what you need to think to yourself.    She has four square feet of her house clean and she put on a hat.  YOU CAN DO THAT!!!!  Social media is NOT real life, people, and heck, what people see when you’re out and about is not always real life either!!  I don’t lounge around my house in fringe boots and vintage caftans (although I’d like too!).  I mostly wear super gross food covered clothes because I have toddlers who like to smear chocolate on EVERYTHING without giving it a second thought.  With that being said, it’s super nice to fool some of the people some of the time, right?

Here’s some simple tips to fool the masses.  Girls will give you the once over, maybe a twice or third time over, and even if you spent all morning being the most unglamorous human on the planet, you’ll feel like an “it girl”!

Okay.  This is a simple outfit, right?  Here’s the pieces that really make this work without a lot of effort on your part.

Tall Boots.  Something about boots screams “I PUT EFFORT INTO MY OUTFIT!”…and, um, it took me under 30 seconds to put these on my feet.  If you’re not into shorts, pair them with a cute skirt or a pair of skinny jeans tucked into them.
White or Black Shirt.  This one is vintage, which, a distressed tee always ups the “cool” factor, but either way, a simple white or black tee is perfect and ALWAYS a piece that looks put together.  Not into vintage?  Raid the men’s undershirt section at Target or get a simple black tee in the women’s section.
Statement Necklace.  Again, putting on a large piece of jewelry signals a bold style and screams out that you REALLY tried.  Uh, HOW long does it take to put on a necklace?  I rest my case.  Worth the 15 seconds.
A Hat.  You guys, there is something about hats that make women instantly think you’re cool.  It certainly makes me think the girls who wear them are cool!  There are some girls who wear a lot of hats on instagram, and I just think they’re the coolest girls ever.  Why?  They plopped a wide brimmed hat on.  #easy
Lipstick.  I’m not all that comfortable in bold lip colors.  But I’m working on that because something about fall makes me want to rock some color on my lips.  My suggestion for this, is to get a nice big lip crayon because it’s a one-and-done kind of application.  There’s not a zillion steps required and touch ups are easy.  I get more compliments when I wear lipstick, no matter what I’m wearing on the rest of my body…heck I could go out in pajamas and red lips and I’d probably get people thinking I “tried”.

Go forth, and be a COOL GIRL.  You already ARE one, but if you’re like me and you don’t FEEL like one, this is guaranteed to do the trick!