Goodbye 2010

December 31, 2010

{Skinny Cargos / Torrid / Sheer Shirt ~ H&M / Sequins  Vest ~ Vintage Thrifted / Suede Wedges ~ Angeles via Yuradiche Boutique, NJ / Crystal Earrings ~ Vintage / Beaded Bracelet ~ Tai}

Since it will be a low-key night in the house with my hubby and kids for NYE, I decided to add some glam and pop on this sequins vest to go to lunch, the movies and run errands with the kids this afternoon. 

Honestly though, a tiny part of me wants to put on my new sequins leggings, get dolled up and hit the town, LOL!

...BUT... I am more than happy staying in with good food, good wine and my family.

2010 has been absolutely AMAZING for me on all fronts.  I am so very thankful for my life and I count my blessings every single day.

Sending a HUGE THANK YOU to all of you girls for reading / following / commenting / and emailing. I love blogging and I am so glad you are here with me. :)

Cheers to a great 2010 ♥ see you next year!

Hair Biz

December 30, 2010

After getting so many comments and emails with questions about my hair, I decided to do an entire post, with all of your questions answered. :)  I just finished my hair tonight so here we go!

First things first, I do my OWN hair.  And nope, I am not a hair stylist. 

I have been doing my hair now for 7+ years.  After paying tons of money to spend ALL day in a hair salon AND leaving dissatisfied, I decided to give it a try myself.  And after years of doing it, I now have it down to a science.  I can style it any way I want, making it longer, shorter, choppy, rocking a shorter bob in the summer or longer layers in the fall and winter.

The most commonly asked question re: my hair: YES, I do wear a weave.  I have natural, unprocessed hair underneath, that I wash, deep condition {I try to let conditioner sit in for at least an hour} and braid up before putting in the weave.  A weaving cap is sewn onto the braids {leaving my edges out around perimeter} and the tracks of weave are sewn onto the cap.

I do it once a month, washing it twice a month {mostly}.  The entire process takes about 2-3 hours.

The brand of hair I use is Outre', the Premium Collection.  Nothing too fancy, it's found at any beauty supply store.  :)

The length varies, depending on how long I want it. This time, I used 16 inches around the perimeter and the rest is 14 inches.

Here I am after sewing the hair in, not yet cut into layers. 

Here it is cut into the layers.  I didn't take much off at all, just trimmed it up to give it some shape. I am just about to start styling.

I use this Liquid Mousse by Fantasia to style it while curling.  It gives it a nice hold but doesn't make the hair stiff.  And it smells really good! :)

I use a 1 1/4 inch Hot Tools curling iron to curl my hair.  And yes, I curl it every day. It takes about 20 minutes. 10 minutes if I am in a hurry. :) 

I do want to try these hot rollers soon, we'll see how that goes.

I start at the bottom and work my way up when curling, spraying the liquid mousse on each section before rolling it around the barrel.

Here is the finished product.  Cut in long layers and curled.

Here I used a full 2 packs of hair.  I like it on the fuller side. :)  As it gets older, it loses some of the volume.

...and the back.

My signature 'swoop'.  I always say I will try blunt bangs or a lighter color.  Of course, I never do. 

Now here is the key to maintaining a soft, silky, natural looking weave, in my opinion: I wrap it every single night.  I don't care how tired I am, I will take the 5 minutes before bed to wrap my hair. 

Also, a CLEAN cotton or silk scarf is essential.

I do the infamous cylinder wrap.

I wrap it tight and tie it down with a scarf then off to bed I go.

And there you have it!  My hair...REVEALED. :)

xoxo, thanks for reading!


December 27, 2010

{Leggings ~ H&M / 3-Layer Fringe Boots ~ Minnetonka / Sequins "C'est CHIC" Tank ~ ASOS (no longer available) / Gray Boyfriend Blazer ~ Torrid / Handbag ~ Cole Haan / Studded Bangles ~ ASOS (no longer available, but how FAB would 3 of these be, stacked? Loving this set too!)}

This outfit that I wore out to dinner with my sister and hubby on Friday night is what I call casual-fab.  We were going to the AMAZING Pod which is a delicious and fabulous Asian restaurant in the city so I wanted to dress up a bit, but still be comfy.  I have many days where I don't want to make a big fuss and put on heels.  These fringe boots are PERFECT for days just like that.

We were just dumped with a foot of snow here in Philly and I have been enjoying the time inside, warm and cozy.  I am on a mini vacation from work and it feels so good to decompress.  Playing UNO with the kids, making delicious meals like chicken and dumplings, listening to great music, painting the dining room a new burnt orange shade that I just LOVE, making a cherry cobbler from scratch, and watching movies while snuggling on the couch with blankets.  Hopefully I won't go too stir-crazy!

I hope you are able to enjoy some time off too. :)

xoxo, thanks for reading!

Dolled Up

December 21, 2010

{This is my typical "dolled up" face.  It's still natural but with a bit of color on my eyes and a shimmery bronzer on my cheeks as blush.  I have this fabulous Tarte makeup palette that I just love.  The colors are so soft and pretty, perfect for the natural look that I am always going for.}

{This Superstay Lip Color by Maybeline is soooo fab! The color I have on is called "orchid".  It's a 2-step application, you put the 16-hour color on first and then apply the conditioning balm.  I also added some clear gloss over for extra shine. It actually lasted all night.  I highly recommend!}

{Vintage Sequins Jacket / Black Dress ~ Style and Co ~ Macy's / Suede Belt ~ Vintage (last worn here) / Platforms ~ Bebe / Clutch ~ Topshop / Black Tights ~ Hue / Earrings ~ H&M} 

I have been DYING to wear this sequins jacket.  The minute I spotted it in the thrift store, I was in absolute admiration.  The colors are just stunning and it sparkles so; it's magical.  It was originally a knee-length dress with a full back zip going down the entire length.  I knew the dress would probably be too much so I had plans to wear it backwards with the zipper in the front, like a longer topper (to be worn over jeans and a tee), but when I had the opportunity to wear it this past weekend to a swanky holiday party in the city, I decided at the last minute that I wanted it to be a shorter, waist length jacket.  So I grabbed the scissors {gasp!!!}  ...and hacked off about 8 inches from the bottom.  I will probably have the raw edge hemmed professionally (and the zipper repaired), but I just LOVE how it turned out.

This black knit dress isn't a fave, but I decided to just look in my closet for something to wear instead of going out to buy a new dress like I had originally planned.  I found this in the back of my closet, slipped it on and remembered that I didn't like it, lol.  But at that point it was too late to do anything about it, so I had no other choice but to wear it with a smile. I also made a note-to-self: I need at least 3 basic black dresses in my closet.  It is actually really tragic that I have about 5 dresses, TOTAL.  ...this is TOTALLY unacceptable. ;) 

I also decided to stay in, save a few bucks and do my own manicure.  I went with a festive green, "Four Leaf Clover" by China Glaze. 

I just love a night on the town, isn't it fun getting all dolled up? :)

xoxo, thanks for reading!

Red Bow

December 19, 2010

{Jeans ~ Z. Cavarrici via Torrid / Teal Top (worn backwards) ~ Forever 21 (last seen here) / Red Leather Bow Gloves ~ Nine West / Camel Cashmere Blend Blazer ~ Vintage/Thrifted (last seen here) / Floral Scarf ~ Old Navy / Slouch Boots ~ UrbanOG / Handbag ~ Rachel Zoe for QVC / Bracelets ~ KJL and  Chamak by Priya Kkar}

I am in love with this color combination.  The idea of wearing camel, red and teal just stuck with me from the moment I thought about it.  And although this outfit isn't strictly comprised of those three colors, I think the added print of the scarf adds interest.   I am building quite the scarf collection and I love it!  I think a beautiful scarf can turn a simple outfit up a notch. And leave it to me to say: you can never have too many scarves. :)

When I think of wearing the color camel, this beautifully soft blazer immediately comes to mind.  It's surprisingly warm - it's the only thing I wore outdoors on Friday and was perfectly cozy.  Having on these fabulous cashmere lined gloves helped.  At last ... a warm but fab pair of gloves! 

I will be playing around with green/ivory/navy next, starring these gorgeous oxfords that I ordered and should be here this week (SO excited!) :

What interesting color combinations are you dying to try? 

I hope everyone had a fabulous weekend!

xoxo, thanks for reading!

Winter Glamour

December 15, 2010

{Faux Fur Coat ~ Gallery (brand) via Nordstrom / Tweed Trousers ~ Lane Bryant - last seen here / Ivory Blouse ~ Vintage/Thrifted / Shoes ~ Isaac Mizrahi for Target / Leather Gloves ~ Moschino Chic and Cheap / Handbag ~ LV Paris Speedy Cube}

Although I have lived in Philly all of my life and we have always experienced some really harsh winters, whenever the cold temps hit, I am completely overwhelmed.  I prefer the warmer weather for sure, but since I have to deal with the COLD, I had to do it...

...pull out this warm and cozy faux fur that is so near and dear to my heart. I feel absolutely glamorous when I slip into this coat.  And I have to say, I get so many compliments, it's really crazy.  Everywhere I go, I have complete strangers rub me and tell me how pretty this coat is.  These pictures do it no justice at all. 

What's weird is, I almost always want to blurt out that it's FAUX when I get a compliment.  I don't know if it's because I don't want people to think that I am wearing a REAL (read: ridiculously expensive) fur OR that I am blatantly wearing an animal on my back and flaunting it.  My husband's take (and mine, really): WHO CARES what people will think? :) 

What is your stance on furs or faux furs?  Yay or Nay to real fur?

When I took these pics today, I seriously thought my fingers were going to be frost-bitten.  These leather gloves are clearly for "fashion" only.  I probably need to get a pair of lined, warm gloves for these frigid temps.  It barely made it out of the 20's today. And it isn't even {officially} winter yet. BRRRR!

xoxo, thanks for reading!

In The Navy

December 12, 2010

 {Jeggings ~ ASOS - I never get tired of wearing these, they have the perfect amount of stretch and are so comfy! / Gray T-Shirt ~ GAP / Leopard Booties ~ UrbanOG - these were more comfy this time; such a different story from the last time I wore them / Hand-Knitted Shrug ~ Kenji - found on clearance at Anthropologie in the summer / Lions Head Pendant on Gold Rope Chain ~ vintage/thrifted / Gold Bracelets ~ the crystal balls are Kenneth Jay Lane and the other bangles are Chamak by Priya Kkar from a 12-bracelet set purchased on Gilt Groupe / Earrings ~ Street Vendor - love these and surprisingly the "gold" hasn't turned}

I was so pleasantly surprised when I stepped outside to take these pics and wasn't freezing to the bone.  I loved this comfy casual outfit, with a little pizazz from the sometimes-comfy-sometimes-uncomfy leopard booties.  I guess it really depends on the day and what my feet can tolerate; because I swear I felt no pain this time wearing them.

After getting an OPI "Russian Navy" (so luscious, I LOVE this color) mani and pedi, it was so easy to reach for this hand knitted, ultra soft, cozy navy sweater shrug.  Pairing it with a gray t-shirt was a no-brainer; I have always been a big fan of navy and gray together.  Speaking of color combinations, I am still dying to try a camel/teal/red combo.  I think those colors will look absolutely gorgeous together, don't you think?

Stay tuned, we'll see how it works out.  I have been searching in my closet for red pieces and am coming up short.  I don't own many red things.  At all.  I do have a vintage red blazer and ONE red tunic.  Hopefully I can make either of them work.

In case you haven't noticed, I changed my blog header... AGAIN.  :) I get bored so easily.  Which is also the reason why we (read: hubby) will be repainting the dining room.  AGAIN.  It's currently "Medieval Gold", by Behr and I want to change the color to something a little cooler. Maybe a slate gray?  Or even a cool green shade?  I don't know, still deciding, we'll see. :)

xoxo, thanks for reading!