Saturday, January 31, 2009
Bangles are back - no, not those Bangles, silly! I'm talking about the bangles worn by the armloads that infuse your look with a bit of cheeky chic.
Wearing bangles is not for the faint-of-heart. Shown this season by the armful, one is just not enough. To really make an impact, pile them on. With your forearms in focus, you can skip the other jewelry - your bangles will take the spotlight.
Perfect to pair with the season's modern and refined looks, bangles provide a chic finishing touch to an otherwise simple look. Pile on wooden bangles, carved resin and lucite bangles, tribal bangles or a touch of heavy metal. Feather and floral bangles bangles add a boho touch to your look. Whatever your style, an armful of bangles brings your look up to date. Jazz Age heiress, Nancy Cunard, famous for her armloads of bangles, would be proud!
With Valentine's Day on the horizon, what better time to treat the little loves of your life to something fun and fabulous? The boutique, Someone Spoil Me, has put together an assortment of some of the cutest goodies around, perfect for Valentine's Day and beyond!
This little Tuxedo Romper ($28) will have the other man in your life sweeping you off your feet.
"Quack" if you love me! Your kids will love having love ducks in the tub, and for just 2 bucks you'll love 'em too!
Someone Spoil Me has gifts that will make the little ones in your life light up, and with prices starting at $2, there's something for all budgets.
Yesterday I had the pleasure of talking to women from St. Mary's School on my career as an image consultant, writer and blogger. It was a wonderful group of girls ranging from 9th grade to senior year, with many of them looking forward to a career in fashion. It was my pleasure to be able to share my experience with them. I was among 80 women who were invited to speak at career day, including a handful of friends (including photographer, Elizabeth Galecke and makeup artist, Fiquet Bailey) and fellow women-in-business. It's inspiring to think that I may have any influence on these women and their futures, and to be able to share with them what I did that I am most proud of as well as what I would have done differently. I look forward to seeing the amazing women these girls will grow up to be, and hope to have the opportunity to work with some of them in the future.
Friday, January 30, 2009
Last week while digging a client out of disorganization, we discovered that her wine rack was eating up 2 square feet of valuable surface space that she desperately needed in her kitchen. Sound familiar? She had been dreaming of keeping her Kitchen Aid mixer out on the counter, instead of constantly lugging it up from underneath her lower cabinet.
The solution: a wall mounted wine rack. This one fits perfectly in narrow spaces and adds a great splash of color to any kitchen. Mount one inside your pantry, garage or in the stairwell down to the basement for easy-to-access wine or seltzer bottles. Give yourself some well needed counter or floor space by going vertical with your bottles!
Snap to it - Erica
New York Magazine's 2008 choice for BEST SPACE ORGANIZER!
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
I recently had the pleasure of being interviewed by two fabulous moms, Vicky and Jen, of Vickyandjen.com. Vicky and Jen are real moms who want to help make things simple for the rest of us. I talked with them about Chic Mama fashion, and easy ways moms can update their wardrobes. We covered many topics including getting more for your money, fashion don'ts, keeping up with trends and much much more. Take a listen to the podcast and let me know what you think. Just please don't make fun of my southern accent!
Vickyandjen.com is a family resource website and podcast show dedicated to making life simple so you can enjoy what really matters. On the podcast show, What Really Matters, Vicky and Jen talk about hot family topics, interviewing guests from parenting experts to best-selling authors, chefs to doctors, and professional organizers to television personalities. Listeners can upload these informative, radio-style shows directly from the website or iTunes and listen anytime. In addition to the podcast, Vicky and Jen provide a companion page of resources for each show with additional information for the listener. Vickyandjen.com shares recipes, kids activities and practical ideas you can really use to make every day more manageable so you can enjoy what really matters to you.
Several months ago I reviewed the Unbelievabra and we ran a contest to give one away. We asked the winner to give us her feedback on the Unbelievabra. Here's what she had this to say:
"I really liked the fact that it was clearly explained how to measure my body in order to get the right size and I did. When I first saw it I could tell right away that it was made from a quality material and it looked really pretty and simple. I was worried that it might feel too tight when I put it on, but I couldn't believe how good it felt wearing it. Once I put it on, I was so surprised how comfortable it was. I wear it all day and I am not exaggerating when I say that it almost feels like second skin. It has great support and after I had my son, my back doesn't look the same as before, so it actually smoothes it out and it makes those "rolls" I dislike so much visually disappear. I can wear tighter shirts and not feel self-conscious about my back. This is a must-have in every woman's closet. I am so excited that I won it and if I hadn't I don't know if I would have bought it, since it never occured to me that this kind of bra actually "works". It makes me look great and it feels wonderful wearing it. There is no downside to this product and I highly recommend it." Maja M.
If you're on your way to losing weight, the Unbelievabra is a great tool that helps you look your best during, and after, the process. It can help smooth all your extra skin and give you a sleek look. This one is a winner!
Editor's note: I have worn my own Unbelievabra with such surprising results that I just had to share. The Unbelievabra is a wonderful product. I wear it with my most clingy knits and it leaves no "back fat", rolls, or other unsightly bulges, and after having kids I have some loose skin. It gives a slimming look to my tummy, too, since it falls below my waistline. I love it!
Giving my toddler a bath during the winter months can be brutal. We don't fill the tub past a few inches for safety reasons, and the water cools off so fast that his baths are disappointingly short. He likes to play, "swim", splash and just have fun in the water. With the dropping temps of the water, I need to make sure I have a thick, thirsty bath towel waiting to wrap up my little bundle and keep him from getting cold. That's why I love the Hooded Bath Towel ($26.50) from Babylicious. Made from a thick and absorbent 10 oz. cotton terry it keeps him nice and warm while soaking up all the excess water. The cute dot pattern is just adorable and the hood makes sure his head doesn't get a chill while his hair is still wet. Plus, he just loves how cute he looks all wrapped up!
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Are you feeling spent? I'm not talking overspent from the holidays, but spent in terms of your energy level, your passion for life, your sex drive (did you forget you had one?). In a recent issue of More Magazine, Dr. Frank Lipman, a NY-based specialist in integrative medicine, penned an article describing the unexpected reasons women feel run down. And it's not just our imagination. It's modern exhaustion taken to new heights.
After working with many women over 40, Dr. Lipman has identified common complaints - brain fog, bloating, allergies, aches and pains, sleepless nights, decreased sex-drive and mild depression. Does this sound familiar? You may have Spent Syndrome, a condition that has become accepted as "normal" in many women, yet is something that we can snap out of without the aid of prescription drugs, fad diets or expensive treatments.
Dr. Lipman is the author of Spent: End Exhaustion and Feel Great Again. His philosophy is that feeling spent is simply the result of an imbalance in our lives. Human beings weren't created to be sedentary, get by on no sleep or subsist on a diet of processed foods. Instead, he touts the benefits of eating seasonally, enjoying fresh air and sunlight and getting in touch with our natural body rhythms.
What Dr. Lipman describes really hits home for me. As an early-40's mom, I just chalked up my feeling "blah" to the winter blues, or peri-menaupause. As it turns out, a lot of these feelings can be eradicated by simply changing our diets. I, for one, can attest to this fact and have been able to turn my blues into a peaceful feeling of contentment.
If you've been feeling spent lately, try these tips to help get you back on track:
1/ Give up sugar - I know this is a hard one, but sugar gives you a burst of energy in the short term, but results in a crash in your blood sugar. It can also age you prematurely - reason enough to give up the white stuff. Try agave nectar, which is lower on the glycemic index and more gentle on your body.
2/ Eat Breakfast - Start your day with a healthy smoothie that includes two restorative ingredients - avocados and whey protein powder. I have made this a daily ritual and trust me, it's delicious and makes me wonder why I ever reached for a cup of coffee. Here's my daily concoction - 1/2 avocado, 2 T vanilla whey protein powder, 1/2 c. frozen blueberries, 12 almonds, 1 T. soaked flax seeds, 1 banana and water as needed. Somehow the avocado takes the sweet edge off the protein powder and gives it a smooth creaminess that is simply delicious. Try your own personal recipe and see how you like it. BTW, my two-year old son shares this with me and asks for more at snacktime. I'd love to hear your personal favorite recipes!
3/ Sleep Tight - Get plenty of rest and sleep in a dark room. Turn off (or cover) all light sources (TV's, clocks, your PDA or computer monitor, etc) to create the most restful atmosphere.
4/ Eat a Healthy Lunch - Make this your biggest meal of the day and include some protein. Make dinner small and full of high-fiber carbs like veggies and whole-grains.
I'd love to hear your feedback on Spent Syndrome and your own personal experiences. Please feel free to share them here.
Read more about Spent Syndrome and Dr. Frank Lipman.
Sunday, January 25, 2009
With winter just getting into full swing in many parts of the world a warm pair of boots becomes essential. But just because your boots need to keep your feet warm in sub-zero temperatures doesn't mean that you can't show a little style. We rounded up some of the most stylish winter boots at some of the best prices around. Take your pick!
1. Put a fashionable spin on your winter wardrobe with these Boots with Straps in Off-White ($56) while you keep your feet warm and comfy.
2. Crafted from a waterproof suede, Sporto's GoJo boots have a fleece lining and a non-skid rubber sole, ($79) perfect for navigating icy sidewalks.
3. To look like you just came off the slopes try these Victoria boots made from water-resistant faux suede (read: vegan) with flat soles for comfort. ($58)
4. The Newton from Earth ($139) merges style and warmth in a cozy mid-calf boot.
5. Made from a micofiber, these Classic Shearling Boots ($48) offer a non-leather alternative to the ubiquitous Uggs.
6. These Linto Boots in camel ($68) are the perfect look with jeans and your coziest sweater.
7. Patch Boots from Sporto ($74) keep you warm and dry in waterproof suede with contrast stitching.
Friday, January 23, 2009
During the winter your skin could use a little TLC. Why not treat it to the delicious indulgence of Bella il Fiore's Whipped Body Creme? A lovely concoction infused with natural oils, aloe vera and Vitamins A and E, this delectable honeysuckle grapefruit scented body lotion leaves your skin silky smooth and soft. The rich formula is reminescent of frosting and is just the pick-me-up your parched skin could use about now, with no added calories.
Becoming a mom is a real learning experience. You have to learn how to hold the baby, read her cues and know when she's about to projectile vomit on your brand new blouse. But more than that, it's about infusing your daily activities with a more child-friendly spin, including child-friendly restaurants, restrooms that have a diaper-changing station and finding the best kids' clothing in town. But you're already so overwhelmed you can't possibly have the energy left to go searching for all things child-friendly.
Good thing there's Yojo Mama, a great mobile service and website for busy parents on-the-go. Currently focused on San Francisco, New York and LA (coming soon), Yojo Mama gives you the rundown of the best child-friendly events, weekend activities, products and services the city has to offer.
Yojo Mama, is the quickest way to find:
Events and activities for parents and kids in their neighborhood, or when they’re traveling somewhere new.
Parent and kid friendly deals based on the user’s location at a given moment.
The nearest diaper changing station or quiet place to nurse.
Kid-friendly restaurants, shopping, and other must-see (or must-avoid!) places.
Real-time answers to 'on the go' questions from a vibrant and growing community of parents.
Informative and fun articles on things to do and places to go
So next time you and baby head out for an adventure, make sure you consult Yojo Mama to make your experience a little smoother, and help you become an experienced mom who's in the know.
Thursday, January 22, 2009
Blankets do more than just keep your little one warm. they offer security when you can't be with them; they provide coverage when you need to nurse; they offer a germ-free spot for a diaper change. Yet blankets are constantly being kicked off, thrown down or pushed out of the stroller, leaving you empty handed when you need a blanket the most.
Secure2Me ($48) creates some of the most snuggly-soft blankets, but with one feature you'll love - clips to securely attach it to, well, whatever you like, ensuring you'll have a blanket when you need it most. Available in some of the coziest fabrics around, Secure2Me is a blanket both kids and moms just adore!
Winter can certainly take a beating on our skin, but it wasn't until recently that I realized how much it can affect our lips too. Dry, cracked and parched by the chilly air and forced heat, my lips were certainly victims of the cold weather. That is, until I had an Eminence Lip Mask as part of a facial treatment from my dear friend, Ginger, at Holistic Skin Therapy.
Using all natural and organic Eminence products, the facial I experienced at Ginger's studio was definitely the best I've had. But when I awoke the next day, I really saw the benefits of her touch. My skin felt soft and smooth, but best of all, my once dry lips were now plump and hydrated and looked better than they had in years!
Holistic Skin Therapy is located in Chapel Hill, NC. If you're anywhere in the area, I strongly enourage you to pay Ginger a vist. If not, look for a spa/studio/salon that uses Eminence skincare. It's wonderfully nourishing on the skin and will leave you looking youthful and refreshed.
Growing up, popcorn was always one of my favorite snacks. Nevermind that it was low in fat and calories, inexpensive and high in fiber. It was quick, easy and satisfying. But oh, how I wish Kernel Season's had been there to rescue my bland, air-popped popcorn and spike it up with a shot of flavor - without adding fat or calories.
Fast forward twenty (okay, thirty) years and I still love my air-popped popcorn - thankfully, the kids love it as much as I do. Yet our little habit of popcorn with melted butter wasn't exactly easy on the waistline. Thankfully, Kernel Season's arrived and changed all that. Now our mid-afternoon popcorn rituals have turned to excitement rather than guilt, and a choice of whether we want to flavor our popcorn with white cheddar, nacho cheese, kettle corn or parmesan and garlic.
If you haven't heard, Kernel Season's has a full range of products designed to help you enhance the flavor of your popcorn. If you pop your corn in an oil-popper, try their Movie Theatre Butter to give your corn a flavorful boost. Then sprinkle it with your choice of Popcorn Seasonings, in one of their 14 yummy flavors. Popcorn has never looked so good! For those with air-poppers like me, simply pop your corn and spray on the Popcorn Spritzer. Then sprinkle on your choice of flavoring and you're good to go. Popcorn never had it so good!
We're giving one winner a Kernel Season's prize pack including Popcorn Spritzer along with an array of Popcorn Seasonings (including kettle corn, ranch, nacho cheddar, parmesan & garlic and butter). To enter just leave us a comment and tell us about your favorite way to enjoy popcorn (don't forget your email address). Deadline is Midnight, January 27, 2009.
Monday, January 19, 2009
Your new year’s resolution may be to exercise more, yet your wardrobe just doesn’t make the cut. Baggy tee shirts and frumpy sweat pants just aren’t the motivation you need to drag yourself to the gym or out for your morning run. To get inspired, grab some new workout wear. Treat your workouts as you do any other part of your day and dress appropriately in clothing that fits well and flatters your shape, and also prevents injury and enhances your performance. Not only will you look the part, but your body will be protected from the stresses and strains of exercise while keeping you cool and dry. The time you spend putting on your athletic wear will get your mind in gear for a great workout, and give you more incentive to keep it up.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
Refrigerators offer the perfect surface for displaying your child’s artwork, the weekly grocery list or birthday party invitations. Yet, if yours is made of stainless steel or paneled with wood, you don’t have the luxury of your fridge doing double-duty as a bulletin board. Until now. Happeez® clippers, frames and notepads are all backed with a grip that effectively sticks to these non-porous surfaces, allowing you to use this available space as you see fit. Clip your to-do list up with a fun and sassy clipper ($15 for a 3-pack), frame a favorite photo ($8 - $15) or make sure you keep track of things to pick up from the store with a Pretty Pleez notepad ($7). Your fridge never had it so good!
Thursday, January 15, 2009
Sharing can be a wonderful thing, but not when it comes to germs. Protecting your little ones when cold and flu season are upon us becomes a real priority. Yet every meal out and every trip to a public restroom offer opportunities for germs to be spread and put our children's delicate immune systems at risk.
Next time you eat out, make sure you take along a Neat Solutions table topper disposable, self-stick placemat. It provides a clean, germ and bacteria-free surface for your child and keeps her finger food sanitary. Plus, it's BPA-Free, PVC-Free, phthalate-Free, ensuring her a healthy meal.
Other great products from Neat Solutions include Potty Toppers and Changing Pads to keep your public restroom experiences as germ-free as possible.
While we can't eliminate germs and bacteria from our lives, we can do things to minimize our children's exposure. Neat Solutions offers up some pretty nifty solutions to help keep those yucky germs and virus' at bay.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Shopping our closets can be a fun way to maximize our wardrobes without having to add anything new. I have had a great time this week shopping my closet and have come up with several great looks (that received some fabulous compliments, too!) using items I already owned. Who knew?
One of my favorite looks this week is super-easy and perfect for the bone-chilling weather we're having. I'm all about layers - they trap heat in and keep you warm while giving you the chance to create a more interesting look. The look I'm spotlighting this week is layering a short-sleeved sweater over a long-sleeved tee. To get this look:
Find a short-sleeved sweater (sleeveless would work here, too) that you already own, probably hidden in the back of your closet. You'll want one in a color that's appropriate for the season, so nothing too spring-y. This could be a sweater tee, a cardigan, or a belted tee, as shown here. I like the belted version, as it gives a clean, modern look. One thing you want to avoid with layers is creating too much bulk around the waistline. You can always add a belt to give you emphasis at the waist.
Then, find a long-sleeved tee with a neckline that will work beneath the sweater. If the sweater is a V-neck, you can opt for a V-neck or a crew-neck, but a square neck or other odd-shaped neckline may not work as well. But be adventurous - you won't know until you try them.
Put on the tee, then layer with the sweater. Tie the belt, or add your own belt for some added pizzazz. You're looking chic already! This works well with everything from your favorite pair of jeans to your tailored trousers and can go from runnning around on the playground to the office in a snap. If you're wearing this to work, make sure you add the appropriate accessories - a great necklace or a sleek pair of earrings (I never recommend you wear both), a scarf, a bangle or two, and shoes that are appropriate for the occasion.
Voila! You've shopped your closet and have a great new look without spending a dime!
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Are you fabulous? Well, we've all got a little bit of fabulous inside us. Sometimes it just takes a little tweaking to bring it out.
Clinton Kelly, host of TLC's What Not to Wear, wants to make sure we can all access that little bit of fabulous. In his book, Freakin' Fabulous: How to Dress, Speak, Behave, Eat, Drink, Entertain, Decorate, and Generally Be Better than Everyone Else, Kelly give us tips on everything from dressing well to decorating to entertaining, and keeps it surprisingly simple - and chic!
Freakin' Fabulous is full of Kelly's requisite better-than-thou attitude, but he's able to pull it off in a way that's more entertaining than it is off-putting. He knows just the right way to tell us that wearing a large print, oversized bag and chunky necklace on our 5' tall frame will make us look like probably have 17 cats at home (instead of 2 busy toddlers). He softens the blow when he tells us that those mesh sandals bought at the last minute to wear to a wedding, or those shoes with the super-chunky heel, really are not stylish and don't belong in our closet.
I have to say that Clinton really knows his stuff - and not just because he's hot stuff himself. His first chapter shows us how wearing the wrong size clothing can make us look oh-so-frumpy, yet wearing clothing that fits well (even if we have a few extra pounds on our frame) can look fantastic! This is an easy and accessible way for all of us to look fabulous - and who can't use a little bit of that?
Freakin' Fabulous is a great read for anyone who needs a little advice - or even just a few new recipes. Whether it's his decadent mac and cheese and bacon (Mmmmm...) or with an outfit that shows off our assets, Clinton Kelly can help bring out the fabulous in us all.
Monday, January 12, 2009
Do you have plans for the Super Bowl yet? Whether you're hosting a handful of your friends for beer and pizza or an all out bash with gourmet chili and all the fixins', chances are you're gonna have some soft drinks and chips, too.
We're giving one lucky winner a Super Bowl Party Pack that includes a football, a beverage pail (to keep those Pepsi's ice cold and at the ready), a snack helmet (perfect for chips and dip), 2 key chains, 2 hats, 2 t-shirts, 5 Pepsi 24-pack coupons and 5 Frito-Lay coupons, valued at $250. It's a fun way to add a little punch to your party and keep some cash in your pocket. For more information on Pepsi products to go RefreshEverything.com.
To enter, leave us a comment telling us your plans for the Super Bowl (February 1, 2009) and don't forget your email (if we can't get in touch with you, you can't win!). Deadline is Midnight, EST, January 18, 2009.
Sunday, January 11, 2009
Oh, but you can't sew and think of yourself as craft-challenged. No worries. You'll soon be wielding a hot glue gun with ease (you might want to wait until the kiddos are safely tucked in first) and finding your way around the craft store faster than you can say "She's Crafty"! Crafty Mama is a well written and very forgiving book that makes crafting easy even for the beginner. With simple and straight forward instructions, it almost reads like a cookbook, listing all the craft "ingredients" and steps necessary to complete a project for your baby or toddler.
One of my favorite projects is "Booty-licious", encouraging us to bejewel our daughters favorite pair of sneakers with spangles and ribbons. I've actually done this for my daughter and it's a fun way to turn an inexpensive pair of shoes into something special, and make your daughter feel like a litle princess! Crafty Mama will give you the know-how to turn the everyday into something fabulous for your kids, and you'll have fun doing it, too!
We're giving away 2 copies of Crafty Mama to 2 lucky winners. To enter, just leave us a comment (don't forget your email) and tell us about your favorite craft project, or how craft-challenged you are (you are not alone!). Deadline is Midnight, EST, January 16, 2009.
Saturday, January 10, 2009
If there's one thing boys really don't like, it's dressing up. Real dressing up that is, not a 3-year old's version which usually includes a cape of some sort. I'm talking about dressing up for a nice dinner, a family gathering or even a wedding. No, kids would rather do just about anything than be stuffed into a crisp shirt and tie (a jacket just might put 'em over the top).
Fat Tie to the rescue! With the hippest knit shirts cleverly created with a neck tie built right in, Fat Tie makes it fun for boys to get dressed up. These ingenius shirts are all created from the softest organic cotton that has been preshrunk, and have a tie sewn right on. My son wore his on Christmas Day and got many compliments from family members. He looked very suave in his "rusty" t-shirt, especially when my husband added his auburn plaid jacket - it was just the cutest!
Fat Tie tees are perfect for solving life's little dress-up dilemmas for the boys and give them something they'll want to wear everyday!
Now that the holidays are over and January is in full swing, it's time to get back in the groove of our regular weekend schedules of grocery shopping, playdates, birthday parties and playground outings. Here's a cute and versatile oufit that will take you through your busy weekend while being comfy and looking chic, all for less than $200!
1. This cute Hooded Scarf with Pockets ($13) is perfect for those chilly moments outside running around with the kids.
2. Start with a Ribbed Tank ($10) in a vibrant shade of orange to give you some color.
3. Top it off with a Chunky Sweater $25 to keep you warm and cozy.
4. These Flared Jeans are just $20 and feature a contoured waistband for a great fit.
5. Brighten up your look with these chic Dolce Vita Flats ($70).
6. The Urban Expressions Peterson Tote is just $35, is large enough to double as a diaper bag, and comes in 3 great colors.
Outfit total, just $174 - including bag and shoes!
Is one of your resolutions this year to be more "green"? Many of us want to make our homes and our lives more eco-friendly, yet with so many products out there it can be difficult to determine which ones live up to their claims.
GREENGUARD Environmental Institute is a non-profit organization that works hard to certify products that have been tested, and lists the products that pass their rigorous standards to ensure air quality. GREENGUARD has developed a Children and Schools certification prohram to address the unique sensitivities of children and infants, and to ensure that the products used around them are not toxic.
Why do we need GREENGUARD? Many products and materials used in our homes and schools can release hundreds of pollutants such as formalehyde, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), ozone and biological allergens, making the indoor air we breathe toxic. With children spending roughly 85% of their time indoors, it is important to know which ones are safe so we can limit their exposure to toxic pollutants. So next time you want to paint your walls, install new carpet or change cleaning products, check GREENGUARD's online product guide to ensure you're using the most green products around.
While we may not be able to make our lives less busy, we can take steps to streamline our schedules. Mom Essentials, from Mommy Track’d, can help you get one step closer to an organized life. A purse-sized personal planner, Mom Essentials features a year’s worth of weekly calendar pages that is completely portable. More than just a day planner, Mom Essentials includes tear-out lists for groceries, contact sheets for important people and much more. So get your busy year off to a well-managed start and see how good it feels to have life under control – at least some of the time. Mom Essentials is available from Mommy Track’d for $14.95.
We want to help you get organized this year, and are giving away one Mom Essentials organizer. To enter, just leave us a comment (don't forget your email) and tell us your biggest organizational challenge. Deadline is Midnight, EST, January 15, 2009.
Thursday, January 08, 2009
Welcome to a new feature here at One Chic Mama called Shop Your Closet. You've probably been hearing the phrase "shop your closet" recently, and there's no better time to do it than now! Inspired by working with my clients through our "closet clarity" sessions, it dawned on me that all women can benefit from having a fresh perspective to get the most mileage from what they already own.
Face it, most of us have way more clothes than we actually need and are bound to have few gems that get pushed to the back of the closet and forgotten. So next time you find yourself saying "I have nothing to wear!", step back, take a deep breath, and shop your closet.
Shopping your closet can be fun. The main factor that will make it a success is the ability to see your wardrobe through fresh eyes. Here are my tips to make the most of shopping your closet and maximizing your wardrobe:
1/ Distance Yourself - You're all too familiar with the old friends who hang in your closet, staring at you day after day and begging to be worn. Forget their sordid past (the sweater worn during big argument with hubby or the top worn when you last caught the stomach flu) and pretend you're looking at someone else's clothes. Things may pop out that you've never really noticed before. Get inspired!
2/ The Big Break-Up - Brad and Angelina may be inseparable, but your twinsets and suits certainly don't have to be. Take them apart and place them on separate hangers. View them individually, not just as a couple, and see how they each have a personality all their own!
3/ Mix and Match - Forget the term "match". It does not belong in your closet. Instead, use the term "coordinate". Matching is what your grandmother did with her hat, her purse and her shoes. Coordinate is what modern women do when they wear things together that aren't in the same color, but play well together. Your purse does not have to match your shoes - ever!
4/ Seeing is Believing - Remember the phrase "out of sight, out of mind"? Well, that's pretty much how your wardrobe works, too. Your goal is to have as many of your items in clear view as possible. Hang as many pieces as you can, store your scarves in a basket in your closet, hang your jewelry up on hooks or keep it in dishes where you can see it, keep your shoes where you can have easy access to them so you can try on several pairs if you need to. If you can't see it, you won't wear it - trust me!
5/ All's Well that Mends Well - Take an afternoon (or even just a few minutes) and go through your closet. Does anything need repairs? Are buttons missing? Do your shoes need repair? If you keep your clothing in good repair, mended, ironed, dry cleaned, and nicely hung, getting dressed will go so much more smoothly. You'll make your mom proud!
6/ The Icing on the Cake - If you just can't resist all those sales going on right now and need to buy something, add a few good accessories. By just adding a pretty scarf, a chic bangle or a new pair of textured or colored tights, you can breathe new life into your basics and not spend a fortune.
Got it? Great. I'd love to hear what new outfits you come up with, made from items you already own!
Tuesday, January 06, 2009
Celebrity stylist, Rachel Zoe, has worked hard to make a name for herself. Known for the amazing looks she creates both on the runways as well as the red carpets, one thing is sure - Rachel Zoe is a true fashion insider with a real knack for style. Wouldn't it be great to tag along with her for a day to see what her high-powered, fashion-infused life is like?
Well, now you have the chance to meet Rachel Zoe. Piperlime is sending one lucky winner (and a friend!) to LA to meet Rachel Zoe and be treated to some high-powered shopping, Rachel Zoe-style.
The $10,000 Grand Prize Package includes:
A three-day stay at the glamorous Roosevelt Hotel for you and a friend.
Roundtrip airfare to Los Angeles for two.
Transportation to and from the airport, and to meet Rachel.
$2,000 each towards a shopping spree at Rachel’s favorite spots.
$500 each towards Piperlime shoes.
So hurry - go to Piperlime.com and register. The deadline is January 25, 2009. Good luck!
Monday, January 05, 2009
Batman has Robin. Shampoo has conditioner. Maggie has the Ferocious Beast. Good things come in duos. That's why we love these Duo Earrings from Twisted Silver. With not just one, but two dangly pearl drops on a lovely copper chain these charming adornments dress up your favorite "jeans and a cute top" ensemble and brighten up your look for winter.
The holidays may be over, but we're still giving gifts. Enter to win these chic Duo Earrings for your very own. Just visit Twisted Silver and tell us what item of jewelry would like to reward yourself for sticking to your new year's resolutions? Leave us a comment and let us know. Don't forget to include your email address so we can find you. Deadline is Midnight, EST, January 10, 2009.
As much fun as the holiday season can be, it can also be filled with stress, not to mention overindulgence. Give your body some TLC with a relaxing bath infused with two cups of Epsom salts and a capful of Farmaesthetics Lemon Balm Remedy Oil ($21.50). Made from sweet almond oil and steeped with organic herbs and essential oils, lemon balm is good for nourishing a depleted system due to stress and over-exhaustion, while Epsom salts will draw all the toxins out of your body and help you experience a blissful state of relaxation. What better way to bring in a new year?
*Find Epsom salts at your local drugstore.
Dry, cracked lips aren’t pretty, but can be all too common this time of year. To keep lips soft and moisturized, keep a tube of Oh Wow For Lips close at hand. Oh Wow is an all natural and vegan-friendly lip balm, with no preservatives or petroleum products. Best of all, it comes in indulgent flavors like spiced chai latte and mint chocolate - proving the old adage “once on the lips, forever on the hips” is not always true. Oh Wow For Lips is $4.25 for a tube or $11.25 for a set of 3.
Saturday, January 03, 2009
Now that the holidays are over, we may be left with more than just a few gifts - we may have packed on a few extra pounds as well. So we need a few tricks up our sleeves - or should I say around our waistlines! While I can't magically make an extra 5-10 pounds disappear from the scale, I can offer suggestions for making them visually disappear from your body and keep you looking sleek and chic through the rest of the winter season.
1. Go Up a Size – Nothing draws more attention to those few extra pounds than clothing that is bursting at the seams. Suck it up (not in) and buy a few items to get you through the winter in a size that fits you best (just remember, it's just a number). You'll erase at least 5 pounds this way and you'll feel great!
2. Don a Jacket or Cardigan - Just make sure it's got a little fit to it, and that it doesn't hit you where you're widest, wherever that may be (low hip or even upper thigh).
3. Ditch the Baggy Clothes - This may seem counterintuitive because as we gain weight, we want to cover up. But wearing clothing that has some fit to it will show off our shape in a flattering way. Shapeless, boxy clothing just makes us look heavier than we are.
4. Wear Darker, Monochromatic Colors - You may know about this one, but the trick is to wear something with a bolder color or print around your face to draw the eye upwards. Wear sparkly earrings, a pretty scarf or a necklace that pops! Instead of black, why not try chocolate brown, a heady plum or a sultry green?
5. Draw Attention to Your Waistline - I know, I know. It's not what you want to show off. Yet if you wear jackets or tops that draw attention in a way that is flattering, but not too tight, then you'll accentuate it in a positive way.
6. Accentuate the Positive - Got great legs? Show 'em off is a shorter skirt and some sexy heels. Are your eyes your best feature? Wear dangly earrings in your eye color to bring them out! When you show off what's best about you, the rest just fades into the background and all people see is a gorgeous and confident YOU!
7. Play Up Your Best Half - Do you carry all your weight below the waist? Then go for a dress with a fitted bodice and an a-line skirt. If your weight is mostly on your top half, then wear a top with an open neckline that nips in at the waist, paired with pants that have a slightly flared leg to balance you out.
8. Lift the "Girls" - If you have a larger bustline, chances are a few pounds gravitate towards this area. Give it a lift by securing your bra straps together using Bralief and magically look pounds thinner.
Even just one of these can make a big difference in how you look (and feel about yourself), so go ahead - fake it 'til you make it!
Rosalyn Ruffled Blouse from Forever 21.
Thursday, January 01, 2009
I hope you all had a wonderful evening spent with friends and family last night, and rang in the new year with cheer! My family and I joined in the festivities in downtown Raleigh and rang in the "new year" watching the acorn drop (Raleigh is known as the 'City of Oaks', and this is its nod to our heritage) at the reasonable hour of 7pm. Fireworks ensued and we all went home feeling like we had already rung in 2009.
This afternoon, we'll spend in Chapel Hill with friends getting our fill of hoppin' john, collard greens and cornbread, then walking along the Haw River for a little reflection. I'm excited to celebrate the new year and all that it will bring, and I can't think of a better way to ring it in than with old friends.
I wish you and your family a sparkling new year filled with health, happiness and prosperity!