Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Up and at 'Em

2 days after Bootcamp my muscles decide it's time to be sore. Every muscle in my body resisted getting out of bed this morning.

During the abs section of our workout Nia told me not to pull on my neck so much, "you might need that someday" she quasi-joked. Today I feel why; the left side of my neck is tender to the touch. Oops.

She gave me a helpful hint though: while doing bicycles think shoulder-to-knee rather than elbow-to-knee. This is also harder on your abs, but I suppose that's the point.

I have some house guests this week and they're staying on the level with the treadmill, so working out at home is out. Looks like I'll have to work some extra walking into my trip to the city tonight.

My friend Steven's in town so me, him, and our friend Laura are going to dinner and then to see American Idiot on Broadway. I can't say that it's a show I would have selected on my own, but it's received good reviews so I'll give it a shot.

Review to follow.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Bootcamp Breakthrough

Last night's bootcamp class, I am pleased to report, went way better than expected.

For starters, it was just me and 4 other women, which was far less intimidating. Apparently we were the only gym-goers with an hour to kill the week before Christmas and I cherished this because I'm sure it's going to be miserable once all of the New Years Resolution people join in.

I arrived (ON TIME!), got my mat and began running in place. Bootcamp is more cardio than body sculpting was, which is good since that's my strong suit, so I would definitely need the water I brought this time.

We shuffled and lunged, lifted weights and passed a medicine ball down the line, and when it came time for abs we were all actually excited because that was the easiest part of the class so far (the woman next to me commented on how she's never thought she'd look forward to doing abs and I agreed).

With the smaller size it was easy to build a rapport with my classmates and I was less self-conscious of how I was doing; I even asked our instructor, Nia, in between "Mountain Climber" sets if I was positioning myself correctly because my back was killing me. She assured me that I was, my body just probably wasn't used to it and I assured her that she was correct.

Bootcamp transitions straight into body sculpting, with a quick aside from Nia that anyone who wasn't staying could leave at that point. As I got up to leave she told me she'd like me to stay and do some extra stretching (I'd confessed over the course of class that I am "new to the gym - is it obvious?" so I'm sure that played a part in her request), which I had not done after body sculpting, and I definitely think it helped. Today I feel a bit sore, but not unable to move.

As I was leaving I thanked her and gave a quick promise of, "I'm going to get better," and I'm confident and excited that I will.

...Yeah, I know, ew, I'm totally one of those gym people right now.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Bootcamp

So far I've tried yoga and body sculpting at the gym. After yoga I felt relaxed and nimble from all of the stretching. After body sculpting I was sore for 2 days, to the extent I couldn't sneeze without wincing, but at least it was the good kind of sore.

The body sculpting instructor was hardcore, she even had on a headset, and I was all sorts of psyched when I started the class. Unfortunately about halfway through she had us break for water, which I had not brought with me, and looked at me with a mixture of pity, disdain, and disbelief and simple said, "you should always bring a water."

During the 2nd half of the class my common sense won out over my pride and I sat out, lest I pass out, for a set of lunges. The instructor almost looked appreciative that I at least had the intelligence to do that. I got right back on the proverbial horse with the next set though.

I almost finished without incident - almost. Unfortunately while we were doing leg lifts with a weight tucked behind our knee I dropped the weight. After it thudded to the ground the instructor simply said "you gotta hold on to those weights" without even looking at me, but obviously knowing which dud had caused the thud.

Tonight I'm trying her bootcamp class. Hopefully I'm less disruptive this time. I'll report back later (or tomorrow if this class kicks my butt like the last one did).

Until then, this is Mjr. Spaz, signing off.

New Project

Everything in life happens for a reason. It's trite, but true. A friendship from the 7th grade led me to the new project I've alluded to and I couldn't be more grateful. At a time in my life when work has been stressful and looking for a new job has yielded no results, because on paper I look like a glorified secretary, I needed a way to relight my spark.

Enter: Moxy Magazine.

From a quick e-mail intro to my awesome publisher, to a dinner meeting in the city, I am now a contributing writer and board member on the project. I'm also hoping to improve upon my editing skills and get some real experience under my belt in that category (outside of grad school workshops).

This month I contributed 2 articles, which are also 2 columns I came up with the idea to include, a "How to" column and a "Top 10."

I have been writing Top 10 lists since High School, it was a fun way to get a laugh out of my friend Joanne and it turned out to be something I had a knack for and really enjoyed, and now I've turned that writing into something fit for a wider audience. I hope you enjoy it.

This blog will still focus on shopping and whatnot, but we all have different sides to us and it's a great feeling to find an outlet for a part of me that had been fading away a bit. It's back now though, in full effect.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

In My Online Absence

While I was on my unintentional blogging break I went to Vegas for a friend's 30th birthday. We stayed at The Hard Rock, where I had never stayed before, and I loved it!

Since The Hard Rock is a boutique hotel it was the perfect place for us to stay. We were a group of about 10 so the small size of the hotel made it easy to meet up at any given point.

We had (2) regular rooms and a suite and they were all really nicely designed; they kept with the rock and roll theme and had fabulous bed linens and great stereos (the suite even had a touch screen stereo that you could hook your ipod up to!).



I particularly enjoyed gambling there because their roulette table was just a $5 minimum bet all day and night. I'm not sure if it was because we were there in the office season or because they're located off the strip, or a combination of the two, but this allowed me to play for quite awhile.

Everyone who worked there was beyond friendly in a chill, relaxed way, rather than an overcompensating customer service way, which I see as a huge plus.


Saturday night we ate at Nobu and there was a plate for every price point and delicious drinks as well. Think kobe beef, sushi, tuna tacos, and even the more basic dishes with chicken looked and smelled amazing.

After dinner we headed up to the suite for a few pre-club cocktails (and a mini photo shoot, my friends crack me up) and then headed down to Vanity, the nightclub at The Hard Rock.

A good friend had been to Vanity over the summer and did not like it, she even went so far as to warn me against it, and I seriously trust her opinion and taste level. Due to this information I went in with low expectations, but I am happy to report that it far exceeded them!

The crowd outside resembled a bunch of Rock of Love rejects, but that's to be expected. I was a happy little fashionista dressed in Gucci H2T, and my friends all looked amazing as well, so I didn't really care about anyone else.


Once inside the design was very cool, very Vegas, total excess. Mirrors, LED lights in waves on the ceiling, velvet seats and an enormous chandelier as the centerpiece. The bathroom was quite literally a vanity with huge mirrors with round light bulbs going up either side and stations to sit and fix your make-up. Cute without being kitsch.

Ladies drank free champagne until midnight so we squeezed a glass in before they cut that off. You cannot be sad while sipping a glass of champagne (or prosecco or cava or any other country's version of sparkling wine for that matter), and I was in a good mood to start, so the night continued to go up from there.

They played a great mix of dance and rock and the crowd was attractive and well dressed (for the most part, that can't keep all the riff raff out) and we danced into the morning before heading back down to the casino to gamble a bit before bed.

Hiatus Explained

It's been quite awhile since I've posted, but with good reason. I've been working on another project that I'm extremely excited about. I'm not going to give you all of the details just yet, but know that there will be an update soon.

There have been quite a few ups and downs lately, but working on a this project has helped me trudge forward in times of difficulty. What I'm contributing to it is all mine and I look forward to sharing it.

The woman running it is even more organized and anal than I am, which I knew was possible, but wasn't sure if it required intensive therapy (it doesn't, she's just fabulous and beyond hardworking). Needless to say, we get along great.

Expect a link to the mystery project to be posted by the end of the week!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Yoga: For Beginners

There are a few things that have always been consistent with my character: I generally run into someone everywhere I go and I'm usually running about 5 minutes late.

In the past year or so I've really worked on my punctuality, unfortunately, today I had a lapse at a rather inopportune time: walking into my very first yoga class.

Oh yes, I was that girl.

I walked into the gym at 5:00 on the dot, when class was starting, and ran into a girl I knew from High School. She worked there and assured me they probably hadn't started yet and had a coworker walk me to the other building where they hold classes.

Perhaps the fact that I had to go back outside should have been enough to signal that I should just do some cardio and call it a night. But no, I'm stubborn (which is also consistent with my character) and continued.

I walked into the room and everyone was already lying down on their mats. I looked behind me, as though the kind staffer who walked me over was also going to introduce me like the new kid in the first grade, and then grabbed a mat and joined the rest of the class on the floor.

Thankfully she was still in the breathing/warm-up portion so I caught up simply by catching my breath. Maybe this yoga thing wouldn't be so bad after all...

And surprisingly it wasn't. Sure there was the moment that I realized I hadn't grabbed a strap and the man next to me had to gesture across the room to where they were located, and the 3rd time we did downward-facing-dog where the teacher came over and fixed the way I was holding my back, and the violent shaking when it came time for abs (which the lovely instructor, who was probably all of 19 years old, was kind enough to tell me was a good thing, "it means it's working!"), but I've made worse physical foul ups.

I made it through to the end, apologized to the instructor for being late, and exited (much more quietly and more relaxed than when I entered).

Looks like I'll live to 'namaste' another day.

Friday, November 12, 2010

From Old T-Shirts to New Activewear



One day on my drive to the tanning salon, which was just a few minutes from my house, I realized that, if I lived in the city, I could easily walk the distance.

However, I'm an impatient person and walking takes too long, so I decided I'd run it. You inevitably smell like tanning booth when you leave anyway (I describe this as a medley of tanning lotion and sanitizer, which kind of smells like Malibu Rum, which I hate), so what's a little perspiration added to the mix?

I clocked the distance on Gmaps Pedometer, which is an amazing site if you've never heard of it, and figured out that it was .98 of a mile. Seriously do-able.

That was 4 years ago and, while I no longer tan, I recently started running again and I'm up to 3 miles 2-4 times a week.

Unfortunately the weather is getting colder and, thanks to daylight savings time, it's now dark when I get home so I need to figure out an alternative. So it looks like I'll be doing the unthinkable: joining a gym.

The beauty of running is that it's free and, as an added bonus, you don't have to talk to anyone. With my headphones on "I'm in the zone, Chief" and no one can bother me. I also get to wear a frighteningly beat-up workout ensemble of old college/bar/vacation t-shirts and lacrosse shorts or cotton leggings. But now, while I don't plan on socializing while I'm at the gym, I know I'm going to feel out of place if I don't look the part, at least a little bit.

So tonight I'm going to Old Navy , armed with a 30% off coupon that also gives to charity, to spend as little as possible on active wear.

I hate paying money to replace my perfectly functional ratty old lax shorts, complete with paints stains from a summer gig a few years back, but at least I'll be doing good for charity. And working out improves my mood, which is charity for the people who have to see me everyday as well :)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

End of Day Update

While my wallet won't be happy to hear it, my hands still feel amazing - over 12 hours after application!

Thankfully they sell La Prairie at Nordstrom so I can at least get some points when I purchase this amazingly effective cellular hand cream.

It looks like a trip to the mall is in my near future.

La Prairie Plug

Fall has rushed in as quickly as, well, me when I'm late to a hair appointment. So quickly, in fact, that I didn't even notice that my hands have begun their winter transformation to sandpaper.

Try as I may to avoid it, every year my hands get super rough with the change of the seasons. Think Scarlet O'Hara when she goes to see Rhett Butler in prison and he realizes she's been working in the fields (minus the actual manual labor).

Over the years I've tried multiple hand creams and solutions;

Neutrogena Norwegian Formula Hand Cream (this is like Chapstick - it creates a protective wax coating, which prevents further damage, but does nothing to actually repair)
Bath & Body Works Look Ma New Hands cream with paraffin (definitely nourishing, but quickly removed the first time you wash your hands which, in cold season especially, means constant reapplication)
Kiehl's Ultimate Strength Hand Salve (a combination of the previously mentioned creams).

Since the Kiehl's seems to get the job done, but still needs time to soak in, I apply it before bed. You can feel the residue washing off in the morning, but at least it feels like it did some work first.

This morning my mother gave me the sample she got of La Praire Cellular Hand Cream so I used it when I got to work and the heavens opened up the angels sang and my hands feel like velvet.

Granted velvet has it's price, $95 to be exact, but I might be willing to make an exception, you know, just this once.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Don't Feel Down, Dress Up!

In college I dressed for class. Skirts, nice pants, cute tops, fitted sweaters, any combination of these items really; I put effort into my daily dressing routine.

My secret was that the days I dressed up were actually the ones I was feeling down. Whether I was hungover, or tired, or sad, rather than wearing PJ's to class I took a deep breath and sucked it up as I sucked myself into stockings and an outfit and I was on my way to a better mood.

My standard issue Loyola hoodie was relegated to the apartment and late-night adventures to other peoples' apartments because I believe that any bad mood could only be made worse by a bad outfit.

A good outfit on the other hand makes you look good, when you look good other people notice, and when other people notice you it boosts your self esteem and, hey, look at that, you're feeling better already.

My point is, if you're feeling dumpy, don't dress frumpy (I couldn't resist the rhyming, that makes me happy too)! Dress up and you won't feel down anymore. It's as simple as a white favorite tee.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Because I'd Rather Wine than Whine...

In addition to fashion and writing I also love food and wine. As you all know, I've got Saks taste on an Off 5th budget, and that applies to shopping across the board, so I love it when I find a nice bottle of inexpensive wine.

It's safe to assume that we share some interests, so if wine is one of them, read on.

A few months ago I enjoyed a fabulous dinner at a little neighborhood restaurant called Snaps. They serve New American cuisine for affordable prices and, naturally, the wine list to match. This night in particular my dining partner and I enjoyed a Waterbrook Columbia Valley Melange Noir, which is a varietal blend of 40% Merlot, 31% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Sangiovese, 13% Cabernet Franc, 1% Various varieties. It was light and tasty, a bit berry, a bit spicy, and it went well with both of our meals.

Since we liked it, and I talk even more than I write, we told the waitress how much we liked it and she recommended a similar wine called 7 Daughters, which is also a blend. After describing how wonderfully delicious and inexpensive the wine was, she ended our convo by telling us that neither wine is particularly easy to find. Wonderful.

So this past week, months after that dinner, I found both the white and red blends - in two different shops! The white I found on a Friday night at a little wine shop near Tudor City in Manhattan. The blurb on the side says that the seven types of grapes are like seven girlfriends getting together, each bringing something different to make the perfect blend and since I was visiting with my college roommates, what could be better?

Composed of French Colombard, Chardonnay, Riesling, Symphony, Orange Muscat, Gew├╝rztraminer and Sauvignon Blanc, it was light and a bit sweet, but not too fruity, which is good because I like a more acidic white and we drank it in a flash.

Monday my mother and I were at a local liquor store on Long Island when we came across the red. They had both blends, but lately all my mom drinks is red, so that's what we went with. The red is a blend of French Colombard, Chardonnay, Riesling, Symphony, Orange Muscat, Gew├╝rztraminer and Sauvignon Blanc and it comes across as light without being too fruity and a tiny bit of a dry aftertaste, but still delicious, especially for around $12.00.

The Seven Daughters website is really cute too. They suggest different Girls Night activities at which you can enjoy their wines, restaurants where you can find them, and even silly blurbs about things like how to be more photogenic.

So sit down, grab a glass, and check it out!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Look of the Day - Fashion - InStyle - Flash Player Installation

Look of the Day - Fashion - InStyle - Flash Player Installation

SJP - You are such a style maven. NYC is lucky to have you as a resident and Halston to have you as both a designer and unofficial model.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Well, That's the Last of It




My Trouve "Sabrina" distressed leather ankle boots came in the mail today and they are a perfect fit! So happy that I can stop the search for the perfect combat boot. No side zipper installed like they are in mainstream styles for those not willing to commit to the style. No extra room that requires me to wear bulky socks, instead I can wear regular socks or even tights and be comfortable. Yay!

In addition to my final shopping item before starting the freeze again, after I got home from my run, I also chose to clean out my closet tonight. I was re-reading part of this great book that reminded me that I should get rid of any items I wouldn't want people to see me in. So, with the perfect soundtrack playing in the background, out went the shirts with the frayed hems, out went anything with a pit stain or a stain of any kind really, out went the oddly-fitting or stretched out items, or anything else I'm hanging onto just because of an emotional attachment.

I'm cleaning house and it's helping.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Hi, My Name is Kim and I'm a Shop-a-holic

When things get hectic, when I'm down, when I just don't know what to do with myself (cue the Dusty Springfield), I go shopping.

Lately, I've had a bit more time on my hands, and some issues to match, but this blog isn't about that, and I've made some purchases. I finally got that MacBook Pro that I went on and on about, which was no small purchase, and yet I shopped more...

I made an accidentally successful trip to Ann Taylor Loft; I'd gone in to look for boots for a friend and walked out with a pair of fitted cargos, which I've been looking for for weeks, and a pale pink sweater with subtle metallic threads running through it.

Earlier that day I had already treated myself to a fun, "XO" double ring by Juicy and a pair of fitted Joe's black pants, that had already been hemmed - score!, at Nordstrom Rack.

And today I stopped at the GAP on my way home after receiving an e-mail that the whole store was 40% off. I walked out with an amazingly soft heather gray long sleeved tee, a cute black and white polka dot woven top, and even some new undergarments (since most of the ladies I know seem to swear by GAP Body).

And how could I forget the amazing Trouve "Sabrina" distressed black leather combat ankle boots from Nordstroms website that are due to arrive tomorrow (a whole day early thanks to those fabulous men in brown at UPS)? But they were also on my shopping list, so that doesn't count either.

But I'm cutting myself off [stern voice]. It's back to savings mode. I shopped, I paid my bills, I satisfied my craving.

Now if life could just ease up for a little while, that would be great...

Merci Mama!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Merci!

Monday my mother came back from Paris and she brought me a fabulous present; a flowy, asymmetrical hemmed, white t-shirt with a black and white image of Coco Chanel on it. LOVE!

It is going to look amazing with my new black skinny Joe's and the combat boots I ordered from Nordstrom. Obviously a polyvore collage is in order, look for it later today...

Merci Mama!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Apple Store - Where Waiting is the Hardest Part

Yesterday at 5:20 p.m. I met with a mac genius to diagnose the maladies my macbook has been experiencing.

Well, to be accurate, I checked in at 5:20 via ipad with the one of the many employees in blue and then I had to wait another half hour or so to be seen. The actual wait-time was not unbearable, but my company made that half hour seem like an eternity.

You see, in my head, the mac store is full of Justin Long looking 20-30 somethings with shaggy hair and/or fun glasses who quip with me about Aqua Teen Hunger Force as they magically repair my macbook, which has been refusing to turn on at all (even when it's plugged in) as of late, just by sending it through some white and silver box that is deceptively simple in appearance, my like the computers themselves.

In actually the store is filled with male and female versions of the guy who plays "a PC" in the apple/mac commercials and probably still refer to the machines as "Macintosh's."

As each new person was called up, some ornery older person would comment, "I thought I was next," then turning to the fellow older person on the Ikea-style bench next to them, "didn't she say I was next?" Only for the very nice young girl in blue running the line off of her way-cool ipad to calmly explain that there are 2 lines; "1 for iphones and ipods and the other for computers," as I'm sure she says at least 100x per shift. I just sat there silently wishing that there was mute button for all outside noise, but apparently they don't have an app for that.

Thankfully my name was soon called and my genius quickly diagnosed that my battery was DOA and could not be resuscitated, and that there was probably a connection problem between where the power adapter hooks up and the actual battery. To send it out to be fixed is a flat rate of $250 which covers "pretty much anything that's wrong with it."

He started explaining my options, but seeing as how my mac is now 4 years old, and computer years are like the reverse of dog years, I cut him off and explained that I'd rather just spring for a new one.

He then asked if I was a teacher or a student because, as it turns out, the education discount is about $100 for the macbook pro. Looks like I'll be going back with a teacher in tow!

Until then, this is KimboNotKimmy signing off from my Acer netbook.

Goodnight.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Sad Mac

So I went to the mall today, but all I came home with were some tops from F21, 2 pairs of leggings, and a sample of the perfume I think I want (still 90%, why waste the $$$ if I'm not 100%?).

The surprise item I was thinking about was a new MacBook. I went to the Apple store, old MacBook in tow, and, much to my chagrin, the salesperson advised me to make an appointment with one of the "geniuses" to see if I should get a new MacBook or if my old one could just be fixed.

So yes, this was logical and, yes, it was a pleasant surprise that, unlike most sales people, she was not trying to sell me more than I needed. However, when I don't fully understand something, I tend to just want to replace it rather than fix it.

While I know I don't want to buy a new battery (why put $$$ into a 4 year old laptop), she did mention that in addition to diagnosing the problem, the "genius" would be able to transfer over all of my old files should I choose to purchase a new MacBook. Maybe they'll even give me some sort of credit for having one that crapped out and still wanting to buy a new one.

A girl can hope, can't she?

So I left, slightly defeated, but with full intentions to make that appointment. Let's see how quickly I actually do this. And let's hope I get a cool "genius."

Friday, September 10, 2010

It's Friday and I'm Tired

Even though it was a short week, it's Friday and I'm exhausted. I don't think I ever really rested up from last weekend, which was non-stop, so I kind of just want to fall asleep in front of the TV tonight, but we're going to dinner instead. I'm sure I'll be glad we did, but right now I'm having trouble getting motivated.

My plan for motivation may sound silly, but this is it: stopping at Bloomingdales on my way home and buying the new fragrance I became obsessed with last night, Womanity, by Thierry Mugler. It's a gourmand fragrance, which means that it's food based (fig and caviar to be specific), and I just immediately fell in love with it. As a burgeoning foodie, I suppose it only makes sense that I'd love this type of scent.

If I don't have time tonight, I'm definitely going to make it part of my day tomorrow, seeing as how I'm already planning on going to the mall anyway. The main purchase is a surprise though, I'd hate to disappoint if I flake out... Enjoy your night!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Bluefly Delivery

So today the Wyatt dress I ordered from Bluefly came and I LOVE it!

I was immediately inspired to create the following Polyvore set involving some of my favorite fashion inspirations. Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

It's Like They KNOW!

Recently I decided that I would not buy any more summer clothes this season. It's getting to be that transitional time of year and, with the weather being so dreary here in NY, I know I can make do with what I've got until Fall (okay, let's be honest, even if we have an Indian Summer I'll be more than "fine.")

Sales are my weakness, obviously, but since the sale racks are filled with summer clothes at this time of year I figure it will be easier to curb my enthusiasm for spending if I set this little rule in place for myself.

And then I got this in my e-mail:


Oh NMLC, you know me too well (and the rest of your sale-searching population I'd suspect). You know I'm sick of searching through picked-over sale racks, you know that if I haven't bought that Haute Hippie top with the missing built-in necklace yet that I'm not going to - even if you do mark it down to 80% off!

So you found a way to suck me back in to shop for those chunky knits and fabulous wedge boots weeks, even months, before I'm able to actually wear them and foil my efforts to take a break from shopping.

You are a worthy adversary NMLC, touche.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Bag Binge

The past few weeks have been crazy busy with weddings and weekends away so tonight, when I finally got the chance to unpack and organize my room, I realized for the first time that I've been on a bit of a bag binge.

In the last month I've purchase 5 handbags. 5!

Granted not one of them was full priced and 2 of them were exceptionally cheap, but that's still a lot of bags in a very short period of time, even for me.

The Rebecca Minkoff is already mentioned below and that's one of the 5, so here are the rest, each with their various purposes and price points:

Pietro Alessandro 2081 Tote in metallic champagne.
Purchased from: ideeli.com
Original Retail Price: $112.00
Price I Paid: $69.00
Reasoning: I don't have a gold going out bag. Okay, so that's not entirely true. I have a metallic gold-ish bag, but it's from Old Navy, which a bunch of guy friends dubbed my "Members Only" purse because of the fabric. I was due for an upgrade. Plus, this one can be used as either a clutch or a cross body tote. It's a 2-in-1!


Nordstrom Ruched Silk Wristlet in champagne.
Purchased from: Nordstrom.com
Original Retail Price: $48.00
Price I Paid: $22.90
Reasoning: I needed a bag to go with a bridesmaid's dress. This fit the bill.


Barney's Black and White
Purchased from: Barney's Outlet at Tanger Riverhead
Original Retail Price: $120.00
Price I Paid: $19.50
Reasoning: It was so cheap and I have a weakness for bags that I know to be somewhat cheap/cheesy looking (hence the "Members Only" purse mentioned above).


Be&D "Twiggy" Large Tote in green
Purchased from: Saks off 5th
Original Retail Price: $1,080.00
Price I Paid: $125.99
Reasoning: While the markdown is reason enough, this bag is just amazing. I had my "Girl in the Green Scarf" moment, a la Rebecca Bloomwood in Confessions of a Shopaholic, I could see myself walking into an interview carrying that bag and the people in HR would just know that they had to hire me.


So now I'm on a bag shopping freeze. I think I actually have every type of bag I could possibly need at this point... I think... haha

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

But the End is the Best Part!

For the past few weeks I've been using my upcoming deadline as an excuse to not reach one of my "goals:" finishing The Devil in the White City.

Having turned the aforementioned piece into my editor on Monday, I no longer have an excuse not to get on that. Plus I decided that I must finish this book before I start any new ones.

The 2 books on my "Must Read" list are added incentive to get through the end of this one. Those books are:
Super Sad True Love Story by Gary Shteyngart - A futuristic work and social commentary that's totally different than my normal selections and yet has me beyond intrigued.
God Save the Fan by Will Leitch - A non-fiction book discussing the ways in which "the man" has ruined sports for the average viewer. A few years ago I attended a Mediabistro panel discussion that Will was on and I developed a huge writer's crush on him. He's very clever and he talks/writes about sports in a way that I actually find appealing, I think it's the pop-culture spin. He's also the creator of Deadspin. Google it.

So now I'm sitting at work on this cloudy day and the phones aren't ringing, so I'm reading the end of The Devil in the White City. I'm about a chapter or so back into and I'm pleased to report that the end seems to be better than I remember it, but that might be because the author is finally tying everything up. Either way, the end is the best part.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Today I Miss My Friend



It's overcast and breezy outside and as I stood in the parking lot at work I thought; it's a perfect day to be on Fire Island.

My mind went back to so many summers when, as great as the sunny days were on the beach, my favorite days were always ones like this. Dressed in a sweatshirt and shorts and no shoes, our feet calloused to the point where no splinters from the boardwalk could penetrate, my friend and I would go down and enjoy having the deserted beach to ourselves.

My first instinct was to text or message her on facebook, knowing that she would agree, my second was that she is no longer with us to do so, and then I thought of this song.

But I can still feel the sand between my toes...

MOH - OMG!!!

I was recently awarded the illustrious role of Maid of Honor in my cousin's wedding.

In addition to the fact that my cousin is one of my favorite people in the world, as a wedding enthusiast and a person who loves planning in general, it is not a role that I take lightly. I look forward to any which way I am able to aid in the planning process.

While my natural proclivity is towards the bachelorette (party) arts, I look forward to honing the rest of my bridal skill set if need be; Dresses, bridals showers, flowers, even seating arrangements, I'm ready, willing, and able to assist.

To put it a bit more informally: I'm going to be the best MOH there ever was ;)

Friday, August 6, 2010

Mad About "Mab"


Do you remember when you were little and you got a new pair of shoes and you loved that so much that you just had to wear them out of the store? That's how I feel about the Rebecca Minkoff bag I bought last night at Saks Off 5th.

I literally brought it downstairs with me when I got home and just had it there while I watched TV and then I put it on when I carried everything upstairs.

It's the "Mab" bag with handles and a strap and it's black fabric with black leather accents. The lining is a black and white stripe, which I was excited about because I had also wanted a black and white striped bag, but that's so limiting and this is much more practical. This way I still get the striped fabric in there somehow.

Originally priced at $375, marked down to $259 with an additional 30% off bringing it to $181 and then I had a 20% off Tanger Outlets coupon making the final price $145!

While I don't have any real plans for the weekend, I will somehow manager for the bag to make it's debut. Like in "The Power of Female Sex" episode of S&TC when Carrie gets the Dolce & Gabbana feather boa shoes and just has to wear them out. (Because as my middle sister will tell you, I can relate everything in life back to Sex & The City)

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Pro-active... To a Fault?

We have 2 computers in my office; the one in the inner office, which has Quickbooks installed on it that we don't download anything onto for fear that we'll get a virus and lose everything, and the one in the outer office that we use for the Internet, Microsoft office, and other general purposes.

Since the outer office computer is like an electronic junk drawer, it's been running slower than normal lately. In an effort to remedy this, I though I'd remove some of the superfluous files and programs from the C: drive.

As I highlighted and deleted old pictures and Word documents, accidental downloads and unnecessary shortcuts to programs whose icons were already on the desktop, I felt good. With each deletion it felt as though the computer was responding that much more quickly.

Finally I hit up the Add/Remove section and got rid of a few music players and other such programs we "never" use, according to the Add/Remove task manager, and I felt like a true techie. I restarted the computer with the confidence that once it had rebooted it would fly through the Internet with the greatest of ease... and then I tried to open Firefox.

"Internet connection not detected."

Surely this was incorrect. After several attempts at quick fixes (including an additional reboot, hey, you never know), I admitted that I needed help and called tech support.

Apparently I had uninstalled a program called "D-Link" which supported my wireless router. Awesome. Over the next half hour I located the antennae and determined that the Internet card was internal, removed the side panel to find a solid centimeter or dust, cleaned the machine, had several sneezing fits, determined the type of card I had an downloaded the proper driver on my netbook (thankfully I didn't take out the Internet for the whole office, just the main pass-the-time-machine).

Unfortunately I don't have a CD burner on my netbook, nor do I have any burnable CD's at work, so I'll have to bring in a flash drive to transfer the driver from my netbook to the computer tomorrow. Thankfully I had said netbook and so I'm not totally disconnected for the rest of the day (heaven forbid I read my New York Magazines which are quickly piling up).

So the lesson learned?

When trying to free up space by removing programs from your computer, don't uninstall something just because a program says that it is used "rarely" and hasn't been run since 2006 because you may need that.

Perhaps I'll stick to clearing the browsing history and cookies on my Internet browser from now on when I'm feeling the need to cleanse.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

GOALS Update

-Deadline passed for the book and I still haven't cracked it.
-No savings update.
-Applied to 1 job last week, 1 job this week, looking to get back on the every day bandwagon.

Sure I could chalk all of this up to my busy schedule and the fact that I haven't been home for a weekend in a month, but yesterday I was reading this article about James Franco and how he takes 3x the regular graduate course load in addition to his regular work schedule and additional projects and I just feel like I've been lacking motivation. So, no, I will not use my busy schedule as a crutch, I will just be honest that I've been slacking and hope that I can get myself back on track.

Also, I have a deadline looming in the next 2 weeks, let's see how this effects things.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Spent - A Review

On one of the morning shows a few months back I saw a segment about a memoir called Spent: Memoirs of a Shopping Addict by a woman named Avis Cardella. (Please note that her first name is an anagram for "Visa," which actually caused me to question her credibility, but I suppose natural coincidences do occur.)

Naturally anything about shopping intrigues me, and I've often wondered about my own reliance on retail therapy, so I bought it. Honestly I wasn't expecting anything more than a "real life" version of Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella, but I was pleasantly surprised to find Cardella's tale was definitely more serious and read as extremely sincere.

She spoke of shopping as a distraction and as an action to be completed as a release. Her addiction got so bad that after her shopping trips she didn't even enjoy her purchases, she just hid them due to the shame. It may sound silly, but that is a nightmare to me, for something you enjoy and love so much to become a cold transaction, something you feel compelled to do and then immediately regret.

Regardless of my own interest in shopping and fears of retail dependency, I think I would have enjoyed the book anyway. Cardella opens with a few anecdotes of famous shoppers and brings the reader in with her concise prose. She appeals to our emotions with stories of shopping with her family and, while she doesn't dwell on it, how shopping changed for her as she came of age and then developed as an adult.

Throughout the book, no matter how dire her circumstances, she never seems to succumb to self pity and her tale never comes across as one of woe, but of precaution.

All in all it is an extremely well-researched, well-thought-out memoir and I would definitely recommend picking it up on your next shopping trip.

GOALS Update:

- Located the book, didn't get back into reading it yet.
- Have 2 checks ready for deposit in Savings.
- Applied to 4 jobs for the 4 days last week (it wasn't one per day, but I applied to as many jobs as there were days in my work week).

Not too shabby, hoping to keep it up.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

GOALS

Back from vacation for just one day and I'm feeling motivated. In the past couple of years I've seen that I'm capable of really positive change and I want to keep that going. Plus I recently got back to running and I'm already seeing results, which always gets me motivated, so I'm setting some goals for myself.

Ranging in size and significance, here they are:

- Finish "The Devil in The White City" by Erik Larson. The book is is based on actual events from the World's Fair in Chicago in 1893 but, while the information is interesting, I just lost interest. After a friend informed me that she'd struggled similarly with the book, but finished, I decided it's time to see how this story ends. DEADLINE: 7/31.

- Meet my next savings goal. Last month I met a big one, but I don't want to just rest on my laurels, so I want to keep the money momentum going. While this deposit will be smaller than my last one, it will still be sizable and I'm confident that if I exhibit a bit of restraint when it comes to shopping I can do it. DEADLINE: 9/10.

- A Job a Day. This is the big one; I want to apply to a job a day (weekdays only, weekend postings are infrequent at best and shady at worst) until I figure out the next step in my career. This is a lofty goal, I'm aware, but whatever I'm doing right now clearly isn't working, so I need to be more aggressive and more creative. Maybe I'll come across the perfect job I never knew I was looking for. DEADLINE: N/A

Wish me luck!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Rush, Rush

"No Time! There's Never Any Time!" - Jessie Spano

I am notoriously waiting til the last minute to do things and today is no exception. Tomorrow morning we leave for Vegas for the wedding (doesn't it seem like I've been talking about this forever) and tonight I have to perform several beauty-related tasks, see my friend's newborn baby (congrats Karen and Phil!) and actually pack (because I only fake-packed last night, which means I retrieved some of the items already on my packing list from my closet).

So tonight I'm sure I'll be up til 1am or so and tomorrow I'll be exhausted as I drive to Queens (probably running late again) so we can get a ride the rest of the way to the airport.

On the plus side, we are flying Virgin America and I can't wait to report back on how it goes. I've wanted to fly them since they launched in August of '07. Until my cousin launches his kid-free airline I'm sure that this will be favorite (or so I hope).

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Regulating Rompers

Last night on my train ride from Long Island to NYC two girls got on one stop after me and both of them were in rompers. The first girl, who was more petite and wore the style better, had on a purple and white patterned strapless romper in a dressier fabric (perhaps charmeuse?). The second girl, who really wasn't built to be wearing a romper in the first place, let alone a cheap ill-fitting, wore a black romper with a floral print in a decidedly more casual fabric (pretty sure it was cotton).

For starters, did they not call each other to discuss what they were wearing? It's not like they were both wearing dresses, rompers are far more distinguishable. Granted they were different patterns and color schemes, but the cut and lengths were extremely similar.

But allow me to get to my real argument: Rompers are not for everyone and they're not for every activity. Just because they're on trend right now does not mean that they're appropriate for a night out.

You still need to consider fabrics, patterns, and accessories. A silk romper, by say Geren Ford or Haute Hippie, could certainly be worn with heels for a night out in the city, but save the cotton for the beer gardens, block parties, and other activities of the like and, please, wear them with flats. Maybe you can get away with heels with a more polished cotton, but there are exceptions to every rule.

Now for the second part of my argument: the logistics of wearing a romper on a night out drinking. Every time you go to the bathroom you have to totally disrobe and, I'm guessing, the fine establishments these, seemingly under-aged, girls were headed to were not going to have the most pristine restrooms. So now you're drunk and getting almost totally undressed and you're outfit is hitting the nasty bathroom floor. That's just not a chance I'd be willing to take.

So it's not that I'm anti-romper, I'm actually quite pro-romper when worn correctly. But that's how I feel about any item of clothing. So I guess my point is more about appropriate dressing in general rather than rompers specifically. I just think the recent popularity of rompers is highlighting how one a trend hits the mainstream there is always the possibility of it being abused.

Friday, July 9, 2010

F21: The Preggers Edition?

When I think of Forever 21, I think of college and sparkly "going out tops," or a store that's great when shopping for costumes, even a fallback option when I've failed to find a little something at H&M. What I do not think of is maternity clothes.

But apparently all that's about to change, as NYMag informed me via Tweet, because F21 is branching out to start a maternity line.

*Gasp*

I mean, is this serious? I feel like there should be a little star under the "Love 21 Maternity" header on the website that says, "Brought to you by MTV's 16 and Pregnant."

Perhaps I'm over-reacting, probably because on a recent trip to the store I came to the harsh realization that I will NOT be forever 21 myself, but this just seems like the oddest brand extension I've heard of in awhile.

Upon closer examination I found that it's mostly solid tops and leggings with a few handbags thrown in the mix (handbags, not diaper bags, so I'm guessing they were just there to bulk up the slim - er, limited, selection).

Even so, I'm going to need some time to let this develop, you know, like a fetus. [shakes head, so weird]

For Hire

So by now, if you're reading this blog semi-regularly, you know a couple of things about me; I'm into fashion, I'm looking for a job, I love to write, I always appreciate a good sale and I value a dollar, and I'm passionate about all of these things. If I could find a job that combines all of them it would make me extremely happy.

Unfortunately I haven't had much luck on the job search front and right now I am extremely frustrated.

Each day I come into work and check my Monster.com job search e-mail, then I check Ed2010.com's Whisper Jobs, then I check Mediabistro.com, and I usually check Craigslist and Indeed.com too.

As I apply to these positions I try not to be pessimistic and think how they're probably just posting the position because they have to legally, but they're really planning on promoting from within.

I also try not to get my hopes up about a job I feel I would be perfect for because, while I may know it in my head, maybe I didn't tweak my resume just right so it shows up on paper that I would be the best fit.

When I don't hear anything I try to cheer myself up by thinking positively; Sure, I've been out of the game for awhile, but hopefully someone who was unemployed and was more qualified and needed it more than me got the position.

But to be honest, I'm just disheartened. I'm a hard worker. I've tried writing 'out of the box' cover letters, I've tried using my connections, I've been applying to jobs in various fields consistently, so when is someone going to call me for an interview?!

Oftentimes I find myself thinking that I am not where I thought I'd be, where I'm supposed to be, but I'm still not entirely sure of where that is exactly. Maybe it's just 'anywhere but here' syndrome, but whatever it is, this whole job search process is draining me. Clearly, since this is entry is a little more Debbie Downer, a little less "rant." *Womp, womp.

Not that I'm going to let this keep me down, I'll be back up for another round, but at the moment I'm beaten down.

(For the record: the rhyming was unintentional, rapping is surely not one of my passions.)

Thursday, July 1, 2010

AllSaints Sale!

This morning I opened my AOL mail, where I have all of my shopping and junk mail sent, to find a lovely surprise: an e-mail from AllSaints announcing a sale of up to 50% off!

Naturally I went on the website immediately and began perusing the sale selection. At most I had 4 items in my cart, but whittled it down to 1, very beautiful and quite unique, top.

After completing my purchase I began to daydream about the different ways in which I will wear my new "Draconis" top, so here's one 'brought to life' in a Polyvore set:


Wednesday, June 30, 2010

An End to a Happy Birthday Month for Me

So tonight I made a trip to the mall to use my birthday coupons before they expire tomorrow. I only had 2, but they were 2 good ones because they were for Express and Anthropologie, 2 stores where I can pretty much always find something.

I've been an Express fan since I could fit into the clothes. It was the first store credit card I ever had. Since I worked at Bath and Body Works at the time I got some crazy discount like 40% off and they always had great clothes for going out. They weren't even overpriced back then and even though they are now, I still shop there from time to time. I'm still a sucker for their buy-one-get-one-half accessories, which is exactly what I wound up with; a pair of star-shaped stud earrings and a three-toned stackable ring.

Then it was on to Anthropologie. After searching through their sale room for another pair of AG jeans (the last pair of cropped boyfriend AG jeans that I got there are currently my favorites) and coming up empty handed I decided on a cream fabric belt with a light brown leather buckle. It was only $38 to begin with and I only saved 15% with my birthday coupon, but it's an item I've been wanting for awhile, it should definitely make several of my skirts wearable again (they currently just look odd not cinched at the waist).

And that was it. I did peruse the sales at French Connection (a black and white striped dress I'd wanted turned out to be ill-fitting and I'm proud to say that I talked myself out of a heather gray sweater, since I have 3 at any given moment), Arden B. (we'll call that a moment of collegiate nostalgia), and J. Crew (where, once again, I exercised restraint and put back a pair of shorts and a skirt, neither of which fit quiiiiiiite right, and 3 headbands - 1 was going to be for my Aunt, really).

I left feeling like I'd accomplished everything I'd gone in and, despite some minor detours, was quite proud of myself for not giving in to the allure of other stores.

But I guess I don't really "need" anything I got, so we'll cal it a wash.

A New Look

Blogger semi-recently offered new blog templates and I decided it was time for a change. The more I look at it the more I feel like I gave my blog a new haircut, nothing too drastic, but definitely more dramatic than the all one length look I previously had it rocking.

Now if I could just get motivated enough to post pictures...

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Just Keep Spinning, Just Keep Spinning...

You ever get so emotional you just feel the thoughts spinning 'round and 'round in your head? It's like a tornado of thoughts and even unrelated issues can fall victim to the gale force winds and get sucked in. Rational thought just doesn't hold enough weight or gravity to resist.

It doesn't matter if it starts with your job situation or your living situation or family or personal relationships, it's like a vortex just forms and everything is sucked into it.

I hate those days. Thankfully that was yesterday.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

A Dress Fit for a Kimberley

A second opinion always helps.

So last night, before my mom and I went to a lovely and delicious dinner at Plum in Bayside, we stopped home so I could try on the Milly dress I'd ordered from the website. It's a beautiful black and white brocade with gold metallic thread running through it that I got on sale.

When it had first arrived, next day despite being shipped UPS Ground - I just love when that happens, I had to put it on by myself. Milly dresses are well-made and this one had one of her neat corset contraptions in it, which basically means you need to hook yourself in as you would with a bra. While this is fabulous in regard to fit and makes the dress look like it was made just for you, it's not so great when you're trying to put it on in an empty house. So the first time I tried it on I hooked it, swiveled it around my body (which was no easy task), and then tried it on with one shoe as I rushed to get ready because I was meeting John to go see a band play.

Needless to say, this was not the best way to try on a new dress, in a totally different cut than you're used to wearing, if you want to be excited about it. Rookie mistake. Perhaps it's why I didn't even blog about it.

Anyway, with the help of my mom last night, I was able to get a proper idea of what the dress would actually look like on the day of the wedding. She hooked me in, I put on both shoes (I had on one originally to which she said "What are you doing? Go put the other shoe on! You're never going to be standing like that." As I stood there with one leg bent in half like a flamingo), and I stood up straight (I attempted to show her that the dress gapped in the back to which she said "Would you stop arching your back? Stand normal.").

Looking in the mirror, standing up straight, with my dancing shoes on, the dress actually looks quite lovely. It meets all of my original criteria:
Sophisticated? Yes, but without looking too "old." Sexy? A little bit, but let's keep in mind that this is a family function and no one wants to be "that girl" in a room of relatives. Stylish? Always.
And it is definitely a little less Kimbo and totally Kimberley.

Perhaps I was just caught up in the mania of the search, and if that was the case, I'm definitely happy my mom was there to help me calm down and see what a great dress it is and how it really is just what I was looking for for this event.

I'll see if I can't Polyvore it up for you all so you decide for yourselves, but I think (fingers crossed*) this is it!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Sick of Looking

Have you ever become so obsessed with finding the perfect outfit that you just get sick of looking for it? That's where I'm at right now with the dress for this wedding. I'm as sick of looking for it as everyone around me is of hearing about it.

When I'm on a shopping mission the term "abnormally obsessed" might not even do my condition justice. The item I am searching for or want, but refuse to pay full price for, it is all I think about. Whether it's searching for it in general or looking for coupons to stores where it's sold, I explore every single option.

It actually takes effort for me to keep the search from consuming me. And, yes, I do realize how sick this sounds.

Today I started reading Spent, Memoirs of a Shopping Addict by Avis Cardella (is it just me or is it a bit coincidental that her first name is an anagram for "Visa?"). Only 1 chapter in and I relate entirely too well to her plight.

Hopefully the book will at least distract me, if not give me some clarity, during this bout of fixation.

In the meantime, send me any great websites for formal wear. Thanks.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Just a little quote...


It's Friday and hopefully some of you are heading out to happy hour after work and maybe, like me, you enjoy some bubbly, so I thought you might enjoy this quote:

"Come quickly! I am tasting stars!" - Dom Perignon (1638-1714) at his
first sip of champagne

Happy Friday

Thursday, June 17, 2010

The Bed-Makers

The world is comprised of two types of people: those who make their beds in the morning and those who do not. I fall into the former category to the point of compulsion.

It sets the tone for the day, my mother would tell me growing up. And she was totally right. You start off organized and when you come home you return to order.

As a kid, rather than technically making my bed each day, I found a loophole. Instead of getting under the sheets each night I kept an extra comforter folded up in the 2ft space between my bed and the wall and each night I would sleep on top of my made-up bed and in the morning I would just fold up the extra comforter and head off to school. In hindsight, this probably was not the best thing for the regular or my "show" comforter as it were, but I digress.

Knowing that my bed is unmade, even if I'm not in the house, irks me. A feeling of sloth just pervades my day. So I don't do it.

And I'm not even envious of those who can; I want to change them, to convince them that my way is the right way and their days and lives will be better once they're on board. It's the control freak in me.

It's not to the point where I can't associate with you if you don't make your bed or anything like that, just don't ask me to come over when it's not. Or, like my mother said, just close your door so I don't have to see it.

Thanks,

A Bed-Maker

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Hey, NYC, K.I.T.

Ever have that friend at school who isn't in your particular circle of friends? But you really like them and always think it would be fun to hang out with them more? So you sign their yearbook "K.I.T." but neither of you ever follows through with actually making plans? Well, ever since I stopped working in Manhattan, that's how I feel about the city.

I may come in at night to go out, but that's not much of a relationship, I need to make ours one that's real, something of substance.

So, after Monday's trip in for sample sale shopping and dinner, I'm making it my mission to get past this little issue. No more empty promises of shopping trips, no more putting off visits to museums, no more substituting LI restaurants when I crave a side of people watching with my meal.

Lookout NYC, 'cause I'll S.Y.T.S. (See You This Summer).

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Milly (and other various brands) Sample Sale

For the past 6 years I have been going to Clothingline's sample sales on 36th between 7th and 8th. Every time I walk down that slightly shady block and see women coming towards me with over-sized blue plastic bags from whatever the sale is my heart races in anticipation of what I too may find there.

Yesterday was no different and as I climbed the stairs to the second floor I crossed my fingers in the hopes of finding a dress for the boy's brother's wedding.

Sadly I did not find a dress, but I did get (2) skirts and a top for just $39 a piece.
The first skirt is a navy miniskirt with a white,olive, and yellow striped trim on the waistband and pockets, perfect with a white button down or simple tank depending on the occasion.
The second skirt is black with a black loop pattern on the bottom half that sort of finished the hem in a scallop. It can also be dressed up or down and I feel like I'll have it forever.
The top was a simple hot pink shell that I can wear under a suit or with my white pants for a night out. A staple item with flair if you will.

The other brands at the sale included John Galliano, Halston (of which I only saw one piece), Laila Azhar, Michael Star, Haute Hippie, and a few more, but none of those brands peaked my interest and so I left, content with my small haul.

After the sale I still had some time to kill so I ran over to Lord & Taylor, but the NYC Flagship was no better than the Garden City Location and so I admitted defeat on the dress front and headed off to an excellent dinner of Thai food with friends.

Monday, June 14, 2010

...But Not the War

Saturday, June 12th, 2010 - Lord & Taylor, Garden City, NY

The place is a mob scene, women of all ages have come to shop the Friends & Family sale. Men mill about like children on a battlefield; confused, lost, even a bit scared.

Briefly distracted by the main floor apparel I remember my mission: a dress fit for a guest at a wedding. With that thought in mind I begin my ascent to the second floor; base camp for the occasion dresses.

Upstairs is only slightly better than down; lines of women still charge the cash wraps and the garments are tossed about like fallen soldiers. Despite the scene I'm not discouraged. I'm on a mission.

One by one I sort through the dresses on the clearance rack, but much to my chagrin I find that I'm merely searching through the remnants of the last sale I attended at this L&T outpost, so I move on to the full priced dresses.

Normally I would sooner surrender than admit the defeat of paying full price, but as I mentioned, it's Friends & Family and that means 25% off "almost all regular and sale merchandise."

Tragically I don't even find one dress worthy of trying on. Either they're too matronly, or too pageant-like, or too much like every other BCBG dress I already own.

Crestfallen, but not entirely broken, I leave the field of battle so that I may shop another day.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Internet Dependant

Not having internet at home seriously inhibits my blogging. Normally I don't even blog at home, I try to do it in the morning with my coffee, typing gets me into a work-related mindset. But work has been busy lately, which is a good thing, so there hasn't been much personal computer time during the day.

To be honest, it's been nice not going online at night. That extra hour of sleep I've been getting, which I'd normally spend updating my Mafia Wars and lazily browsing pictures of people I don't really care about before going to bed, shows in my face and makes me wonder if I hadn't developed a bit of an addiction. So a cleanse was in order.

Not having cable in my room, on the other hand, has been disorienting. As terrible as it sounds, I'm not entirely sure what day of the week it is if I don't know what shows are on that night. Last night I realized I've missed two weeks of The Real Housewives of New Jersey and I thought where did the time go? With nothing to distinguish the days they all sort of float about it my head. Sad.

It is with this in mind that I plan to make my summer TV schedule spreadsheet. I realize that this sounds ridiculous, but I'm a fan of lists, and schedule, and that little color-coded evenly measured time table of TV information puts a little order in my world.

In the meantime, thanks for sticking around.
-KNK

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Outfit Crisis Averted

*Sigh of relief*

After the other day's frantic wedding-guest-dress post I am happy to report that I found a dress to wear to the wedding this weekend.

Towards the end of the day I'd become quite desperate, I was even going through old facebook albums to see if there were dresses I'd forgotten about, so I rushed home in the rain.

The first dress, a fabulous peach lace Carmen Marc Valvo dress, washed me out so that was removed from the running. The second dress, a flirty Kelly green BCBG number with ruffled straps, had a spot on in from the last time I'd worn it to a wedding (lesson: take better care of one's property).

Finally, I had saved the best, and most likely viable, option for last. I slipped on the black chiffon Banana Republic dress that I'd bought at the outlets months back with the mindset that one can always use an extra LBD.

As I hooked the hook and eye and zipped the zipper, I knew it fit.

Now I am not a girl who normally stresses a little weight fluctuation and I rarely worry about clothes (other than jeans) not fitting because I (thankfully) went through my the-tighter-the-better phase Sophomore year of college. So the unique joy that washed over me when I zipped and exhaled was an emotion that was fairly new to me.

I am all about loving your body. Would I like to have larger breasts and a more-defined rear end? Sure! Am I willing to pay for or work out towards those ends respectively? No. So I love what I've got.

I embrace my petite stature, but everyone has had a moment where they say I have nothing to wear because of [insert body issue here] so I shop for clothes that mask those problem areas and/or create the illusion of a more perfect physique. And thankfully, this dress does all of that and does it with style.

Accessorized with my new "lipstick pink" Tory Burch heels and my new Olivia Harris clutch and I will look good, feel good, and have fun. May you do the same with your weekend...

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Sorry, We're Out of Stock, Try Again Later...

This weekend I have a family wedding to attend in Florida. I had my dress all planned out, as posted below, and even got a cute black clutch, at a steal of a deal, to complete the ensemble.

Since I'd already worn the dress accessorized in a similar fashion I thought it'd be fun to get new jewelry as well, but a search of the standard inexpensive accessories stops (Express, Aldo, NY&Co, Ann Taylor Loft, even Chico's and Claire's) yielded no results.

Upon arriving home I optimistically posited; I'm being ridiculous, surely I can make a killer combo with the accessories I already own.

In order to get the full effect of my look-options I decided to put on the dress. And that's when it all went down the tubes...

In addition to not zipping up with the usual ease, the dress was apparently torn where the bodice met the zipper and the boning was digging into my mid-section.

Before going into full panic mode I rationalized that it may just be the cut of this particular dress, as the waist falls at the natural waist line and that is the one part of my body that is completely out of proportion with the rest of it.

As I put on the dress I planned to the rehearsal dinner I knew that that one wasn't going to fit either (although this one was because of my bust line, so I really wasn't that upset about that) and I would need to do a total overhaul on my weekend packing spreadsheet (yes, I plan weekend outfits in Excel, now if someone would just hire me I could put this obsessive compulsive level of organization to good use).

At lunch I went over to the outlets, but much to my chagrin I didn't like anything I tried on and that wasn't even the worst part, I actually looked at the rows and rows of clearance items and thought; I'm too tired to look through all of this.

That has never happened to me before. Ever.

So now it is almost the end of the day and I'm going to my last resort: the black garment bag.

Whenever I'm kind of over a dress (translation: I've worn it to more than 2 events and/or I never really loved it in the first place) it winds up in this one very over-stuffed garment bag.

Wish me luck.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Olivia - Can I Call You 'Liv?'

Just got a $195 Olivia Harris clutch for $49! It's black leather and approximately 10"x6"x1.5" with cool lines that oddly enough remind me of the Flux Capacitor from Back to the Future.

Love this brand. Here's how they describe themselves:

"The OH line of bags is younger, edgier, and a little grittier then her older sister 'Gryson'."

Edgy, gritty, rock and rock, we're gonna be friends. So can I call ya' Liv?

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

About That Wedding Outfit...

So here it is, or an adaptation at least. As I mentioned my actual dress is from last season, but this one is also Rebecca Taylor and it's the same shade of blue. I like to think that mine is a bit edgier as the polished cotton is tone on tone blue zebra print; I threw in the bangle to add that missing element.

And don't forget the handsome man I'll have on my arm, it wouldn't do justice to the Madonna homage if I didn't ;)


The Pre-Metallics Era

When I was growing up when getting dressed for a formal event (whether it be a bat mitzvah or a sweet 16), you wore black shoes. There were no fancy metallic options unless they were of the Nina brand bridal shoe variety and therefor, to be avoided.

Then, somewhere between High School and College, right around the same time "black pants" were replaced by jeans as the new going out attire, metallics were reintroduced to the fashion canon. And so black shoes became the footwear equivalent of a dirty word to me.

Black shoes with a pink dress? Ew, what was I, like, 40 or something?


Now, several years later, I have come to appreciate the black shoe again, but in a different way. Now black is used as an accent, a statement of contrast, like it's used with pink at Victoria's Secret or as a color scheme for a wedding.

With this in mind I am choosing to wear black shoes with a blue dress to an upcoming family wedding in Florida. The dress is from last season, but I'll attempt to create a collage that's as close to the real thing as possible on Polyvore and post in a bit.

I guess when it comes to black, you can go back.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Promised Polyvore Posting

So here's an idea of how I styled my new AllSaints skirt for dinner last nice. It's so comfy and I must admit that I felt terrible cool in it, but of course the best part of the night was the company. (Especially since no skirt could pull me out of the mood that a multitude of Liz Lemon situations put me in.)


Thursday, May 6, 2010

AllSaints Day

When I was in London a few years back my roommate Steph and I stumbled across a little shop in Covent Garden on Long Acre called AllSaints. After yet another trip to Zara, which despite having British buyers was still very similar to the selection in the US, we walked into a store a few doors down and began to mill around.

The exposed brick walls and sparse metal fixtures gave the place a great vibe, very industrial, and the great clothes with their deconstructed lines and cool color palette, which could technically be described as neutral and washed but is really anything but, complete the very London vibe.

We browsed and tried on tons of stuff but, being students on study-abroad budgets and the exchange rate being about .50 cents on the dollar, wound up each getting 1 item: the exact same leopard print slip dress with chains draped across the back. It was on sale and when we both came out of the dressing room you could tell we both loved it since our mutual reaction was ‘well when are we ever going to be together that we have to worry about wearing it to the same event?’ (Steph was an undergrad and I was the only grad student on the trip; so, while we still chat from time to time, we’ve definitely never worn the dress at the same time) and we immediately changed so we could rush up to the register.

The chatty sales person let us know they’d be opening a location in Ibiza next and one in New York “soon.” Upon returning home I checked once or twice to see if they were opening up in the US, but eventually forgot about the store.

Fast Forward to a few months ago; I’m on People.com and I notice that Pink is wearing this kick a** leather jacket and, sure enough, it’s from AllSaints. Within nanoseconds I’m on their website and pleased as punch to realize that it’s the same shop I’d loved in London not so long ago. Still no NY store but they did have a US website and, as it turns out, they ship from New Jersey so when I placed my order for 3 dresses for my Vegas trip the package arrived in 24 hours. No joke.

Naturally I joined their mailing list and the other day Christmas came early because I received an e-mail saying that they will be opening up a Soho location this month! I can’t wait to be able to try everything on instead of selectively ordering items I’m almost positive will fit.

Plus I’m really hesitant about ordering shoes online and, despite my secret desire to totally master the Anglo-style, I just haven’t been able to persuade myself to order one of their many pairs of combat boots. In addition to being unsure about fit, there are just so many styles to choose from and I may actually make a day out of selecting a pair at the new store. Crazy, I know, but if you didn’t understand these desires of mine, you probably wouldn’t be reading my blog.

P.S. I’ll post Polyvore collages of my most recent purchases soon. I’ve been playing around with how I’ll style them since they arrived earlier this week. <3

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

S&TC: 2

To say that I am a fan of Sex and the City is an understatement; it is hands down my favorite show of all time, so when the first movie came out I was skeptical. The final episode of the show's 6 season run was perfect and it's culmination had even conveniently coincided with my graduation from college.

For 4 years S&TC got me through it all; from hook-ups to break-ups. My roommates and I watched the VHS tapes of the first 2 seasons so much that they wore thin, which we then replaced with the DVDs. We spent long hungover weekends watching the girls and their city, which was also our city, change and grow together. So when it was time for all of us to move on from the safe haven of college, it only seemed fitting that the show would end at the same time.

In 2008, when the first movie came out, I was going through yet another major life change. Despite my rocky emotional state, I got dressed in my most Carrie-esque skirt and a white tank and I stood outside of the movie's premier at Radio City Music Hall to watch the stars go by. Hoards of people stood on that street and the skies opened up and it began to pour and I decided, I simply didn't care. With no room to move on the crowded and blockaded sidewalk, I decided to use this as my opportunity to get closer to metal guardrail that stood between me and the street, with all of my favorite characters on the other side.

Yes, I know that they are just that; characters, but they were characters that meant the world to me. From them I learned that it is okay to be imperfect. It is okay to be older and single (not that I'm quite at "older" yet, but when I am I will think of these women) as long as you've got your friends. I learned that I am not a simple girl, I am a Katie girl ("Ka-ka-ka-katie, ca-ca-ca-curly!") and there is no one else I would rather be.

So while bloggers and reporters and everyone else with internet access is bashing the soon to be released Sex & the City 2, where the girls wind up in Abu Dhabi (an admittedly ridiculous location), I eagerly await it. For no other reason than I am a fan and these characters, who restore wonderful meaning to the term "Leading Ladies," still mean the world to me.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Three Cheers for Polyvore!

After realizing that reading lists of outfits I've put put together in bullet format is about as exciting as waiting for your fresh coat of OPI to dry at the nail salon, I joined Polyvore, a virtual styling website.

The site is so great, you can put together items as you've styled them or ask other users to style an item you can't quite figure out on your own.

It's oodles and oodles of fun and it's free and I'm still just figuring it out, but I can't wait to play around with the site.

Here's my first set, which is how I styled my black AllSaints Temptress dress for Vegas:
Find me on Polyvore
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Thursday, March 25, 2010

Vegas, Baby. Vegas.


Not that I was ever a fan of Swingers, but you just can't have lived through the '90's and say you're going to Vegas without that line going through your head. And as it happens, tonight we leave for Vegas.

I've packed a dress and killer heels for each night and will happily post pics upon our return. I tried to switch it up while accessorizing this time. I even bought a fabulous pair of leopard cut-out booties (as you see at the beginning of the post) from the Betsey Johnson outlet for just $60 from $200! Don't ya' just love 'em?

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Don't You Forget About Me

So I know it's been far too long (internet time being an accelerated version of dog years and all) since I wrote, and I promise more is coming today. Recent purchases, outfit combinatinations, trips I've taken and ones I'm going on soon.

It's all terribly exciting, well, for me anyway...

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Being of Irish Heritage, I have always observed the American celebration of St. Patrick's Day.

On a few points of common confusion that seem to come up surrounding the holiday, I would like to clarify:

Yes, I know that corned beef and cabbage is not a traditional Irish meal, the real Irish meal is ham and cabbage, but it is an American Irish tradition since that was a common meal that the immigrants ate when they came over from Ireland. They couldn't afford the ham from the Kosher butcher (not throwing stones, just sayin'), so they made do with corned beef. It's not authentically Irish, but it's a part of the heritage so I still consider it a good way to celebrate since the whole holiday is an American convention anyway.

No, no one through excrement at me through a screen door, these are freckles and I love them. It's been said that a face without freckles is like a night without stars.

Yes, we are stubborn, but that stems from our passion. Passion for Ireland, our families, and our beliefs. As Sidney Littlewood said, "The Irish don't know what they want and are prepared to fight to the death to get it."

And to clarify one more point on why we wear green, here's a note from Wikipedia:
Originally the colour associated with Saint Patrick was blue. However, over the years the colour green and its association with Saint Patrick's day grew.[2] Green ribbons and shamrocks were worn in celebration of St Patrick's Day as early as the 17th century.[3] He is said to have used the shamrock, a three-leaved plant, to explain the Holy Trinity to the pre-Christian Irish, and the wearing and display of shamrocks and shamrock-inspired designs have become a ubiquitous feature of the day.[4][5] Then in the 1798 rebellion in hopes of making a political statement Irish soldiers wore full green uniforms on 17 March in hopes of catching attention with their unusual fashion gimmick.[2] The phrase "the wearing of the green", meaning to wear a shamrock on one's clothing, derives from the song of the same name.

So while I will not be out in NYC today, I am wearing the green and eating soda bread and drinking tea, which I will replace with either Guinness or Smithwicks later because Is d'Eirinn me (I am of Ireland).