How to Do a Glamorous Scarf Headwrap

To look fabulous even while prepping for New Year’s Eve, slather some deep conditioner on your hair and wear this headwrap all day.

 

Advertisements

Your Invitation to Love Your Style

Life is funny sometimes (or often, if your life is anything like mine).

I got into this blogging gig to help my friends who were constantly asking about my style, how I put things together to achieve a certain effect, how I made being put together seem fun. So I started writing about my adventures in style and sharing the “insider knowledge” I’ve learned along my way. That led to personal shopping and styling for clients, which I find to be even more effective in helping someone perfect great style.

Enter the “life is funny” part: while there is a good amount of knowledge that can be imparted through writing, sometimes it’s so much easier to learn in a face-to-face setting.

I was reminded of this when I spent a recent afternoon scouring YouTube and the rest of the interwebs for information on how to do a super-cool, high-techy effect in Photoshop. After three hours of Photoshopping and absolutely no progress (and quite possible a good deal of regression), I posted a desperate plea for help on Facebook. Like the real-life Wonder Woman she is, my friend Mere answered the call, jumped on my computer and accomplished in ten minutes what I had been trying to do for hours. This reminded me of something I’ve known for a long time, but often forget:

It takes a team.

Sometimes we invite a world of pain into our lives by trying to do it all ourselves (I may or may not be speaking from personal experience here), when, if we just took advantage of assistance from someone who’s a little further down the path from us, our lives would be so much richer (and dare I say, easier!).

So I invite you to Love Your Style, an interactive style workshop I’ll be hosting this February. I’ve designed this workshop specifically to help you get a handle on your personal style and which clothing styles flatter you. I want to give you some strategies to make shopping fun instead of a soul-sucking ordeal (can I get an Amen?). And because I know you’re busy, I’ve distilled all this and more down into an hour, respecting your time with valuable activities and information.

If that’s not enough for you, Lakelandparents.com (check out my guest posts on their site) will be providing a swag bag of delightful goodies for each and every attendee.

And I’m pleased to announce that everyone who brings a new or gently used item of clothing for the Top Buttons Boutique will receive a $5.00 discount (use promo code STYLEME at checkout)!

One last note: if you’re pretty sure your man is going to make a visit to the mall in a panic on Christmas Eve and buy you a piece of jewelry shaped like a heart or a butterfly, do him a solid and send this post to him. And just like that–you’re getting a better stocking stuffer this year.

The Most Stylish Gifts

Black and Tan by open door.jpg

“There are two ways of spreading light; be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.”–Edith Wharton

What a year it has been! Over the past year, I gave birth to a son and moved from a one (albeit roomy)-bedroom loft downtown into a four-bedroom home in my city’s historic district. It was all gloriously overwhelming, and in the six short months we’ve lived in our new place, I’m settling right in and already noticing an accumulation of stuff. Admittedly, some pieces were direly needed (hello, dining table that seats more than four people), but some of it is just that inevitable creep of stuff one acquires to fill space (toilet paper holder that turns out to only hold super small rolls, I’m looking at you).

For a few years now, I’ve avidly avoiding collecting stuff, and my downtown living arrangements helped keep me in check. But as the holidays approach and I see the White Elephant parties looming, I’m getting hives on my neck just thinking about the impending stuff I am bound to receive during the holidays by people who are simply trying to tell me they love me dearly.

Thankfully, a colleague saved me from adding another item to my “re-gift” cupboard (talk about showing someone how much you love them). While my office was scheduled to have a holiday gift exchange, she (brilliantly) suggested that we each bring an item to donate to a local charity instead. No pointless accumulation AND spreading a little Christmas cheer? Count me in!

If you don’t need another scented hand soap this season, you might consider asking your office/holiday partygoers to bring a donation instead of exchanging gifts. We can be the mirror reflecting the candlelight with which we’ve been lavished, and something tells me someone truly in need could use a brighter holiday.

Ideas to point you in the right direction:
Office Party: Bring a toy to make a child’s holiday brighter (toysfortots.org). Locally, Crystal Lake Elementary is in need of Dollar Store gifts which they allow their students to “shop” for their families. School closes on December 18th, so these gifts are needed ASAP (Ms. Gambill, 863.499.2966)
Dinner Party: Holidays are often difficult for seniors. If you’re hosting a party, ask your guests to bring a new throw or blanket to warm their heart and legs instead of a hostess gift (Viste.org).
Girlfriends’ group/book club: We often think of food and clothing for the homeless, but underpinnings are often sorely needed as well. Collect bras and underwear for those spending the holidays in a shelter (Lighthouse Ministries, lighthousmin.org, 863.687.4076).
Extended Family Gathering: We often gather with our extended families, but someone in your family probably knows a soldier who isn’t home for the holidays. Consider bringing care package items to wrap up and send them with a note of appreciation. This would be a great activity with kids. Go solo: Are you a party of one this Christmas? Consider making an extra round on your next trip to Target to compile a bag of supplies for PACE Center for Girls, a school whose program is nationally recognized for keeping girls from entering the juvenile justice system. They are always in need of gift cards for restaurants and establishments teenaged girls would enjoy (used for academic rewards—I think of Black & Brew, Taco Bus, Target Starbucks, etc.), hair accessories, make-up items (eye shadows, perfume samples, lip gloss), journals, costume jewelry, and fun snacks (PACE Center for Girls, 863.688.5596).

Outfit unpacked:

Beaded sweater: Banana Republic

Pencil Skirt: Express

Leopard Calf Hair pumps: Ralph Lauren

Necklace: J. Crew

Sunglasses: Cole Haan

Bag: Ralph Lauren (blue glitter poinsettia not included)

Funerals are not Nightclubs

DSC_0260

Recently, I attended a funeral for a man who had taken his own life.

I didn’t know this man except through the eyes of his Love; they had been together for over twenty years. As the service began, the family entered the room, which took nearly two minutes, as they were such a large group.  The room was full of people—coworkers, friends, and supporters.

I have never been more thankful to be wearing the right thing.

You may be thinking, “Well, that’s shallow. A person dies and you’re thinking about clothes.”

Rachel Zoe says, “Style is a way to say who you are without having to speak.” Language that doesn’t require words becomes even more important in times when words fail us, such as the passing away of a fellow human being. And just as important as knowing what to say is knowing when to say it (and knowing when not to).

I want my clothes to say, “I mourn with you. I am here to support you.”

There is a time to express every inch of our personality in our clothing. A time to push boundaries, and to be audacious. To be colorful and light. A memorial service is not that time.

When we attend a memorial service, our attire should be deferent to the family and the deceased. Dark colors should prevail and conservative cuts should be worn (yes, I know that dress is black, but is it the same one you wore to the club last night? Then no.). Jewelry should be conservative and kept to a minimum (or nonexistent). This is not the time to try out those fuchsia heels you’ve been dying to wear.

Everything about your personal appearance should be curated to avoid drawing attention to yourself. In fact, throughout the rest of the day, at least one person should ask you, “Are you going to a funeral?” It should be that evident.

Side note: If, by any chance, you are reading this and are considering making plans to leave this world, please stay with us. There are people here who love you–even if right now it doesn’t seem like anyone cares, I promise you, they do. Talk to someone. Get help. We need you here.