Friday, October 30, 2009


Head on over to Jen Loves Kev for a chance to win this darling flower pin along with a very cool Jen Loves Kev tee.

This is one of my very favorite blogs. Jen is absolutely charming, has impeccable style, and makes very lovely things for her etsy shop. I've been lusting after her flower pins for some time now. I hope I win. :P

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Pumpkin Carving

Since adulthood, I haven't paid much attention to Halloween. I've always enjoyed dressing up, but in recent years the time and money spent on costuming has weighed down the experience and I just haven't bothered. I know I'll get into it big time when I have kids, but for

There is, however, one event every year that I look forward to preceding Halloween. It's H.Y.P.E.'s annual pumpkin carving contest. I won the first year, when it was just a wee event in the church basement. Now, we fill the fellowship hall with families and their pumpkins.

Of course, here is my favorite participating family: niece Kara, husband Steve, niece Nora, and father-in-law Bob.

Bumble Bee Kara made a tree house pumpkin.

Minnie Mouse Nora made an ornery pumpkin.

My pumpkin didn't exactly turn out as planned. They rarely ever do. I had big plans to make this fat-faced alley cat three-dimensional. The original design had big, beady eyes and ears that stuck out...but it just couldn't happen in an hour's time. Oh well, the kids seemed to like this version.

The winning pumpkin, though really gross, was really brilliant. This, my friends, is the heart of a deer. Definitely a first to have a real organ at our event. New pal Mason was the brain behind this idea. Sounded like he had saved the heart in the freezer...ya know, for a rainy day. How lovely that he chose to debut it at our pumpkin carving contest. We're honored and amazed.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

80's Nod

My childhood came forth in yesterday's outfit. And I loved it. I absolutely would have worn this in 1989, age 7. I didn't get a close up my earrings, but they are hearts as well. Steve bought them for me on a business trip to San Francisco...or San Diego(?) My mom had a pair identical to these when I was a kid, only they were navy and gold. And I know I had a sweater just like this one, only it was pastel colors.

The jacket (also seen here)...imitation 80's vintage from Urban Outfitters. I pretty much adore everything at Urban Outfitter's, but don't usually have the bucks to spend on stuff that looks like it was bought at a thrift store. In a wonderful display of retail kindness, this baby was on the clearance rack for $10. Niiiiice.

Coat: Urban Outfitters
Scarf: CSO (Deb) many moons ago
Sweater: H&M
Skirt: JCrew
Tights: ???
Shoes: Kohls

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


I shouldn't even be looking on, but I'm a bit of an addict now. Just can't help myself even when I know I cannot buy anything right now. I'm saving, remember?

I wanted these guys waaayyy back here. I'm really into the color combo on these in particular. Of course they'd walk into my life at such a great price when I'm on a shopping ban. If they're still available in a few weeks, I might have to adopt them.

55% off here

I actually think these are sort of ugly, but in a good way. Wish the heel was (way) higher, but at this price...what the heck.

84% off here

These are super fun. The last thing I need is another pair of brown heels, but they still tempt me.

87% off here

I like these too. I like the chunky-cuteness of them and their preppy wear-to-work-ability.

79% off here

Like the Kangaroos, this is another pair I might be able to justify in a few weeks. These are so I want to eat them.

87% off here

Monday, October 26, 2009


This dress was one of those purchases that I was SO excited about when I bought it. Then, it sat in my closet, unworn, for months. Sorry, dress, I love you!

I love it even more since I finally wore it to church on Sunday. Maybe I was afraid it would be very tight and restrictive and uncomfortable. It wasn't. My church is really casual, and sometimes it's hard to motivate myself to dress up for it. Is that sad? Whatever. I felt like dressing up this Sunday because I was freshly blonde. A trip to the salon will do that for me...make me want to dress up.

I call it my 'cupcake dress' because it makes me feel like a cupcake. Perhaps a dark chocolate one with raspberry creme filling? Yeah, something like that.

Hmm. Now I'm craving a cupcake. Maybe this was a bad idea...

Dress: JC Penny
Oxford: Target
Tights: ???
Shoes: Kohls

Picture here.


Go here for a chance to win this darling, Shabby Apple dress via Grosgrain Fabulous!

Friday, October 23, 2009


This week is finally coming to an end. Shooting this promotional video has taken it's toll on all of us, I think. Even me, a minor participant. The work days this week have been loooong.

Being that much of the video is set in a women's clothing store, Elaina and I supplied most of the set with items from our own wardrobes. I'm looking forward to getting my closet back in working order.

Today's shoot is set in a boardroom. Elaina gets to play a secretary role, mopping up spilled coffee. She doesn't have any lines, but I'm rather jealous anyway. I live in the secretarial role and love secretary clothes. But I know she'll be great. Check out her secretary outfit. It's fab.

This is Brian. He's playing the role of Junior Executive. So cute, right?

And speaking of secretary clothes, here's what I wore yesterday:

I'm sort of obsessed with this blouse. Picked up this white one and another in black at Old Navy (or Old Navy Outlet?) a while back and they are perfect layering pieces. I think they were each $4(?) Elaina picked up this gorgeous dress form at TJ Maxx housewares department. Sooo perfect. We used it as a prop this week.

These shoes...oh how they pain me. But my philosophy is, if my pants are too long, I buy taller shoes! Well, these are 4 1/2 glorious inches. And I was feeling every millimeter of them by the time I got home last night.

Blouse: Old Navy (Outlet?)
Blazer: Vintage, thrifted
Belt: Kohls
Trousers: Banana Republic Outlet
Shoes: Guess via, also seen here

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Save and Let Save

I've been trying to conserve my allowances lately. I haven't been successful yet, but I will be. It's a mental game. Changin' my habits. It's a sloooooow process. Part of this effort includes remixing my clothes in ways I haven't considered before. Fellow fashion bloggers have been a huge inspiration.

My tendency is to find pieces that work well together and then always wear those items that same way. How lame and unimaginative is that? My intention is to change that tendency. If I can make several different outfits using the same item...well then, perhaps that's a few less items I might otherwise be inclined to buy. Thus saving. Thus affording all of the other things I wish to have/do. Travel being a big part of that. And Christmas is coming up...the timing is right.

This simple, floral, Target dress was in the loot I brought home from Goodwill Outlet. Here is how I wore it in August. This definitely would have been stored away for the winter by now if not for my new found desire to remix and make my wardrobe go further. How easy to simply throw on a sweater, tights and booties and have a perfectly appropriate cold-weather outfit. Hello. Why didn't I think of that before?

Sweater: ???
Apple Necklace: Garage Sale, seen here
Tights: ???
Booties: DSW

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

It Came to Pass

I think I'm pretty even keel. I don't freak out much. I went through a phase in my early teens, then again in my latter teens...well, maybe it was all of my teens...where I was highly emotional, distraught even. It was probably typical teenage stuff. Sometime around age 20 I decided to get grip. Gain perspective. See the big picture.

I remember watching a video of a christian comedian, Mark Lowry. He said his favorite portion of scripture is "And it came to pass...". It came to pass. It didn't come to stay. It came to pass! Either it will pass or you will pass. Ha. I can't tell you what good news that was for me. The things I was going through...though so minor in comparison to real-world stuff...I realized that they would pass.

The same goes for fashion. You thought I was going to get all serious there for a second, didn't you? Had ya fooled.

And it came to pass that I was 8 and it was the dead of winter and I specifically remember warning my mom about what I wanted to wear to school one day. I came out of my room wearing tight, acid-washed denim shorts (the cuffs rolled up to display a floral pattern) and white tights. I can't imagine what shoes I chose to go with that ensemble, but I'm sure it was all the rage.

I started wearing shorts with tights again around age 25. I guess some things come to pass only to come back around. Also entirely true of fashion. That post will have to be written at some other time.

Remember Marithe Francois Girboud?

And it came to pass that I was in 5th grade desperate to own a pair of those jeans. What were they, like $100 or something? Ridiculous. All to have that stupid, little label on the crotch. An older friend was kind enough to let me buy a pair from her for $20. That was a lot of cash for a 10 year old in the early 90s. They were dark, almost navy blue. And I wore them until the buttons popped.

Soon it would come to pass in 8th grade that my jeans HAD to have patches or rips or some destroyed feature. I HAD to wear an over-sized flannel shirt, and I HAD wear Doc. Marten look-alikes (because there was no affording the real thing). So basically, when I was an itty bitty size 2, all I wore were things that covered up my little bod. The grunge look stole my best body years from me. What a horrible trend.

And it came to pass in 10th grade I saw the movie Clueless and it pretty much changed my life. I was bound and determined to attain as many clothes and shoes as possible and it made me want to be very, very girly.

Then around 19-21, it came to pass, after I'd consumed every spare inch of closet space due to my clueless phase (clueless indeed), I decided I liked printed bottoms with solid tops. It didn't matter what print...plaid, floral, paisley, stripe...they were on my lower half. Mostly in capri form. Madness, I tell ya, madness.

Several seasons ago the ONLY casual dresses I could find were sack dresses. In a few special circumstances I was able to ignore that this silhouette does zip for my body type. I admit, I indulged in a few (they're uber comfy). I took the inquisitive [is she pregnant?] looks well, I think. Then thankfully, this shapeless trend came to pass.

There have been numerous other passing phases: hoodie phase, denim phase, ugly shoe phase, over-use of accessories phase, polyester phase...

Lately, I'm really into dresses of the short variety. I haven't owned a long skirt/dress in eons. I dig wide-leg trousers but prefer my jeans skinny. I love vintage now more than ever and have put somewhat of a kibosh on following trendy-trends (know what I mean?). I suppose now I'm in a wear what I want not what everyone else is wearing phase. It's my favorite phase so far.

I really hate to call it a phase should it come to pass. I'm sure I felt that way about all phases-passed as well.

Photos here, here.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Minnesota Nice

Just when we were about to storm the news station and kill the weatherman, look what he pulls out of his you-know-what. (As if the weatherman has anything do with it.)

We've had three perfectly lovely fall days in a row. So perfect that Steve, Elaina and I were able to take a lovely little stroll in the city on our lunch break today. Have I mentioned that Elaina is temporarily employed at my place of work? Yes, she is. She is interning for the duration of the project I mentioned in the previous post. WHO is lucky enough to work with both husband and bestie? That would be me.

This time of year really brings out the beauty in downtown St. Paul. We have such great, old architecture. One of my very favorite buildings is the Landmark Center. Nearly everyone visiting the area for the first time takes notice of this monstrous structure. I see it everyday, and try not to take it for granted. I like to imagine living there. My very own castle.

Stevie and Me. No Coats!

She can't NOT be silly.

Another thing that makes St. Paul fun...the Peanuts. As in Charlie, Lucy, Linus, Snoopy, Woodstock...they're everywhere. Our little homage to the late, great Charles Schulz. He was a Minnesota native, dontchaknow.

Left-Right: Schroeder, Elaina, and Lucy's days like these that make me so happy that I live here. The feeling only comes around a few days a year. Mostly, I'm just cold and bitter about it. :)

Friday, October 16, 2009

Model Me

I am a prop. No, I'm on a prop.

My husband is working on an online commercial for work. It takes place in a women's clothing store. The plot begins with a green dress and ends with a red dress. To make the set look more like a store, they needed posters of a woman in the dresses. Hello, that's me.

I am in no way modelesce (is that a word?). I'm short and curvy. My hair hasn't seen the stylist since July and I have a tooth that needs repair. The green dress, even with a slimmer underneath, hugged my every curve. It especially drew attention to a little lower abdomen trouble I've had since childhood. I sucked it in till I was gasping for air.

For Real.

So with no hard feelings whatsoever, I permitted Steve to make any and all necessary 'adjustments' in Photoshop. The green dress results are in. Years from now I'll take this picture into a plastic surgeon and say, "Make me look like her."

For Fake.

Hair: Blonder
Eyes: Bigger and un-bloodshot
Body: 15lbs thinner
Height: 3" taller
Dress: from

Those women you see in magazines, the celebrities that appear so flawless...don't let 'em fool's all fake. I'm quite sure they have all the lumps and bumps and 'flaws', same as you and me. They'll just never let you see the 'before' picture. Ha.

I'll post the red dress pictures when they're ready.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Jayma Mays

Have you seen Glee? Because it's one of my new faves (thank you, TiVo). Not only because it's a musical with full-fledged corniness, but because it's incredibly witty and quirky and slightly disturbing...all the things I look for in a show.

My favorite character, by far, is Ms. Emma Pillsbury played by Jayma Mays. If it's possible to get beyond her strange voice, severe mysophobia, and deer-in-headlights expression, you may find her quite charming and adorable. Hello, Mr. Schuester.

Oh yeah...and she would surely win 'best dressed' at McKinley High School. Too bad she's not a student.

Ms. Pillsbury loves her classic, vintage style of colorful cardigans and tweedy skirts with darling matching accessories such as sweater clips, broaches, and pearls. Most outfits come complete with clear, plastic gloves to keep off germs...don't let it bother you.

Photos here, here, here, here.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Crafty Day

Several weeks ago, I was invited over to Girly Muse's house for a little decoupage action. It was something I'd never done before and found it thoroughly enjoyable...therapeutic even.

In the meantime, BF Elaina and I have been on the hunt for mannequin heads - to serve several purposes, but mainly for displaying headbands. Last week, as I was in the checkout line at Savers, I came across two huge bins of these:

Fast forward to Saturday. Elaina wants to spend the day fabric shopping, crafting and sewing in preparation for an upcoming bazaar. She had this great idea to decoupage the mannequin heads. I was totally on board for that! I can't sew, but I can rip and paste!

Our first official stop was S.A. Harris in Brooklyn Park - a warehouse piled floor to ceiling with discount fabric. Quite overwhelming, but an overall good experience. Elaina found some great fabric for making purses and tutus.

Next we went to Savers to purchase more heads, then on to JoAnn Fabrics for everything else. By the time we finally got back to Elaina's house I couldn't wait to start decoupaging! Later, friends Katie, Keely and Debbie joined us and decoupaged heads as well - it was so much fun!

Our individual works of art.... Elaina Me. Keely. Deb & Katie.

Here are some pictures of Elaina's enviable sewing room. Isn't it just the cutest crafty space ever!

Tutu also seen here.

Debbie = Crafter-Extraordinaire.

Minnesota readers: Items will be featured at the Oakwood Bazaar, November 6 & 7. Click here for more information. You won't want to miss it!