Monday, May 16, 2016

Chloe + Isabel Review: Jewelry Essentials and New Pieces for Summer 2016

In case you hadn't noticed, I really love subscription boxes. I love fashion, but can't always find the time to shop. Stitch Fix has really helped fill in the gaps, and opened my mind to new styles I would have never tried before. My closet is bursting with new tops and jeans to wear this summer.

While subscription boxes are a ton of fun, they do have their limitations. I realized recently that I rarely keep or wear accessories others pick out for me. Perhaps it's because they send so few?

So, I began the search for a new way to shop for jewelry essentials. Many of my old favorites are tarnished or broken. Others just seem out of style.

I stumbled upon Chloe + Isabel and I think I'm in love! As a brand new affiliate blogging partner, they were kind enough to send me a few complimentary pieces and I can't wait to show them to you. If something catches your eye along the way, my affiliate links will take you straight to the item online.

First, a little about Chloe + Isabel, or C+I, for short. C+I is a New York based company specializing in high quality jewelry. While you can shop for pieces online, the latest styles come to life in pop-up shops hosted by spirited entrepreneurs. They offer a variety of both trendsetting styles (Chloe) and classic essentials (Isabel).

When I first saw the Crystal Square Pendant Necklace ($28) I just knew it would be a new favorite of mine. It's timeless style perfectly represents the classic side of C + I, Isabel.


This piece pairs perfectly with my antique wedding ring. Adorned with clear crystal pave, the simple square on a 16 inch chain with a 2 inch extender is just what I'm looking for in an everyday necklace. You can dress up a tee or wear it with a henley neckline for a bit of glam sparkle.

I also picked out these gorgeous Alpenglow Stackable Rings ($42) with semiprecious cloud quartz and blue and white mother-of-pearl. These will go with a lot of what I already have and flatter my cool, winter skin tone.


I wore these last Sunday to dress up a printed tee and jeans for a poolside party. It was the first time I noticed the different way each stone was cut and how they catch the light. I've got my eye on a beaded bracelet and a long station necklace to match.

Last, I picked the Sand + Sky Convertible Pendant Necklace ($52), which has probably received more compliments than the other 2 pieces combined. Looking through my jewelry, I noticed I have a lot of longer chain and layering type necklaces, but few short styles. I am really happy with the length; the 16/18 inch chain (with a 2 inch extender) is so functional.


The necklace is pictured here with the "treasure chest" #2 painted and gave to me for Mother's Day. Isn't he sweet?

The shape of the semi-precious amazonite pendant with pave accents reminds me of a Kendra Scott necklace I've been eye-balling. Honestly, I almost purchased one a dozen times but changed my mind because I wasn't sure of the quality. That's probably one of my favorite things about C + I, the lifetime guarantee.

Not only that, but for less than the price of a Kendra Scott, I got 2 necklaces in 1! I'm loving these convertible style. I can wear them together or split them up, and don't have to stand at the mirror wondering if they work together.

I was pleasantly surprised that the Sand + Sky Necklace perfectly matched the top I bought at Marshall's last weekend and wore them for Mother's Day!


Here's a picture of the convertible chain detail. Love! I thought I'd also mention that the chains are super comfortable, and don't slide around while you are wearing them.



The icing on the cake was this free Jardins du Midi Travel Candle ($28) and free shipping as part of a Mother's Day promotion.


I was absolutely shocked when my order showed up just 3 days after ordering. Each item was wrapped in a cute little drawstring bag, perfect for gifting or storage.


I was also very impressed by my local, lovely C + I representative. Candice contacted me shortly after I checked out and after my package was delivered to make sure everything was in order. I have to admit, her C + I story has me thinking about becoming a merchandiser myself. She loves the jewelry, was drawn to the C + I commitment to empower women, and joined to make a little extra money to travel (in style!). If you're interested in becoming a merchandiser yourself, you can read more about it here.

As I was writing up this blog post, an email popped-up about the new Summer 2016 pieces. I've already added a few accessories to my wish list, including the tortoise shell classic sunglasses on this gorgeous model.



She's also wearing the Lunette Open Cuff Set, Bead + Chain Multi-Wrap Bracelet, and Positano Convertible Layered Necklace

And I can't stop thinking about the Capri Statement Cuff below. This look is so very Racquel Welch, don't you think? You can find the rest of this collection, as well as the new summer styles here.


I'm meeting up with Candice tomorrow to get the new summer 2016 Chloe + Isabel catalog. The spring catalog is my new favorite desk accessory. The theme is "From Rome, with Love." She wants to show me a little stock, too. I'll try and snap a picture or 2 and share them on Instagram and Pinterest.


Which piece is on your Chloe + Isabel wishlist? I'd love to see what C + I pieces you're wearing so I can add them to mine!


Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Happy Mother's Day + Spotlight on DK Designs on Etsy

Wedding season is in full swing and my Etsy shop is super busy with bridal shower tags, graduation party supplies and wedding favor labels. Between that, baseball season, the end of the school year and AWANA, it would be easy to come up with excuses instead of Mother's Day gifts.

But the more years I spend as a Mother myself, the more I realize the sacrifice many women in my life have made for their families. I've been looking for ways to express my gratitude and thought I'd share a few with you.

The first thing I thought of was corsages, but as you know their beauty fades. Recently I noticed a trend in polymer clay flowers in the Etsy Weddings Section. Genious, right? Gorgeous flowers that last forever, a keepsake of your special day.

So I began looking for a local maker as I was a bit pressed for time. I narrowed the search and found an Etsy seller in my own backyard, DK Designs.

I was ecstatic when Diane messaged me back saying she could work with my requests. I was looking for 3 delicate corsages in specific colors, and needed them quickly. Before I knew it, they arrived on my porch, carefully packaged in cute little gift boxes.







After I'd ordered these pretty little flowers I began to look through Diane's Etsy shop and noticed she has been featured on Martha Stewart. Naturally, I did the stalkery thing and found this video. I probably watched it years ago. Amazing, right?

The colors in each arrangement represent my children's birthstones. I can't wait to give them to special Mom's in my life as a token of my love and appreciation.

I'm also working on a few DIY clay projects (nothing Martha Stewart worthy, but fun) for my sister and friends that I hope to have time to share with you later this week. Stay tuned!

In the meantime, I want to wish all of the Mom's out there a blessed Mother's Day!

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Vintage Modern Recipe Cards Inspired by Pyrex Patterns

Awhile back I created these vintage Pyrex inspired recipe cards in a few of my favorite patterns; Friendship, Snowflake and Pink Stems. I wasn't super excited about the way they were printing on my usual kraft paper, so there they sat in digital design limbo for awhile.

Maybe it was that spring cleaning sort of feeling I have had lately that got the ball rolling again. My husband picked up some brilliant linen cardstock for me and I am so happy with the results! The bright white paper really shows off the gorgeous colors.


I love the texture of this linen cardstock. It makes for an extra thick set of recipe cards and gorgeous contrast. See for yourself on the blue snowflake pattern.


Recipes write out so nicely on them, too.

Pyrex always brings up happy memories for me. When I printed up the Friendship Pattern I thought of a good friend, and decided I just had to write out her famous sugar cookie recipe on it.


The last design I added to my Etsy shop is the Pink Stems Pattern. I've got to get myself one of those casserole dishes!


I can't decide which design I like best!


Next, I'm working on Butterfly Gold, my best friend's favorite pattern. I'm thinking after that I'll do Crazy Daisy. Dare I attempt my all time favorite, Butterprint?

You can find all of these lovelies in My Etsy Shop here:

Pick up a set for an upcoming bridal shower, Mother's Day or a friend's birthday. Don't forget to buy yourself something, too!

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Spring Forward: Stitch Fix Review and Gift Card Giveaway!

With an early Easter and spring upon us I am anxiously awaiting the return of warm weather! I'm so glad my Stitch Fix arrived with a few pieces that will be just perfect for the transition to spring. I did a little early spring cleaning and made room for a few new favorites. I was happy to find a few keepers!

In addition to my usual Stitch Fix review, I thought I'd try something new and giveaway a $20 Stitch Fix gift card! More on that later.

First, I want to show you the fabulous pieces from my spring Stitch Fix. I have a feeling you'll be pinning a few! And, there just might be a surprise in the box. Can you guess what's hiding behind the usual tops and jeans?


No, it's not #3. I mean, that is #3, but he didn't come in the box. It's shoes! That fun little Stitch Fix bag contains one lovely pair of shoes! In case you haven't heard, Stitch Fix is now carrying a wide assortment of styles.


They just happened to be one of my favorite shoe styles, ballet flats. For a mom on the go, these are a must-have. I love prints like these with a bit of shimmer to add a hint of glam to basic assembles. I see a lot of other animal prints out there like cheetah and leopard print. The snake print is a nice, unexpected addition. Beige, brown and grey are great neutrals; I suspect they'd go with everything, both dressy and casual. And, they fold up so you can throw them in your bag for a quick shoe change.


Stitch Fix sent me a size 10 where I normally wear a 9.5 so I'm assuming these only come in whole sizes. I have wide feet so 10s often work out for me, and ballet flats are a great choice. Unfortunately, these were too long for me. Bummer! I loved these instantly. Perhaps I'll request a 9 in my next box.

Be sure and head over and update your style profile with your shoe size if you haven't already! And, of course, schedule a Fix and request your favorite shoe styles. If you'd like to request this pair, Stitch Fix calls them Yosi Samra Snake Print Flats, $75.

I can't decide which piece to show you next, I love so many! I have a feeling, this one is going to be a reader favorite, the Skies are Blue Caine Fringe Open Cardigan, $54.


I love this brand! It's always on trend, each piece is well made and true to size, and the prices are just right. I was happy to see this in my box because I've been eyeing it.

I broke out my white jeans and borrowed a minty pastel top and booties from #1 for pictures.

     

This quote came to mind while shooting this Fix. It was crazy windy, with comedic timing given my recent haircut and decision to stop straightening my hair. I'm not quite convinced that all good things are wild and free.



I also tried the cardigan with the 3rd item in my box, the Kut From The Kloth Cai Bootcut Jeans, $88.

     

I can't stop thinking about these jeans! Lately, I feel like Loft jeans are too stretchy and just slip off, and these fit really well overall. But, given I rarely wear boots under jeans (these are #1s), the 33 inch inseam is just too long for me. 

Here's another shot. I love the wash. It's hard to send back a pair of jeans a teenager insists are perfect....


These have a very similar fit to the Dear John Marson Wide Leg Trouser, which I also love, but with an extra inch or 2.

Let's move on, because, well, this. 


I would have kept this, even if I had to use it as a hand towel. I'm a sucker for embroidery, and love wearing navy. I normally hate pink, but it just works here. It's the THML Longoria Embroidery Top, $58.

Here's a close-up of the gorgeous detail. 


It reminds me of the THML Christy Embroidered Top I got in August that didn't quite work out due to fit. This structured short sleeve is so much more flattering on my round shoulders. I'm always happy to find new things to wear with my white jeans, too.

The last item in my box was the one I thought I would like the most, but the fit didn't quite work out.


It's the RD Style Anso Mixed Material Knit Top, $58. I pictured myself wearing it with mint skinnies (next box?) or grey leggings.

But.... the fit was so off on me I decided to show it to you on #1 instead.


Clearly this isn't working on her either. She's almost as tall as I am (5'6") and about the same size. I think this top may work better for petites, it just needs more length in the torso. Well, my wallet will be happy, because if this had fit right I would have kept it for sure.

I'm really excited about my new embroidered top and cardigan! I already ran out and bought a basic white Loft t-shirt to wear with the cardi (Embroidered Vintage Soft Tee).


I have plenty of things that go with it, but I had a $15 Loft birthday coupon burning a hole in my pocket! Tees are on sale for $20 bucks so I picked up 2. They have a gazillion colors online, in petites, too.


Stitch Fix $20 Gift Card Giveaway


Thank you for tolerating this blog post while waiting for the Stitch Fix Gift Card Giveaway! Hopefully, your patience will pay off. I like to keep giveaways light and fun, no rafflecopter or forced social media sharing (although it's much appreciated). Just do these 2 things:

1. Click Here on my affiliate link and check out Stitch Fix.

There is absolutely no commitment, just explore the website and fill out a style profile.


2. Come back here and leave a comment, anything you want.

Don't forget to leave me a way to contact you if you win!

Must live in the US to enter. Winner will be announced on (Good) Friday, March 25, 2016 via email or method of contact provided. Winner will have 3 days to respond before another winner is selected, so be sure and check those spam folders.

Best of luck, and happy Fixin'!

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Stitch Fix Does Casual Chic for the Work from Home Mom

Oh that I had written this post yesterday when I was bursting with creativity! If only I could find the perfect formula to achieve that everyday. Perhaps I was inspired by my rockin' 15th Stitch Fix box? I spent the day filling Etsy orders, networking with fellow shop owners, and brainstorming ideas for my Etsy shop. I've almost finished a blog post about all the changes I've seen in Etsy recently.

With all the time I'm spending building my small business, and raising a family, I just don't have time to shop. I actually tried going a few times this last week, and was just too pressed for time and couldn't find what I was looking for. I've really come to rely on my Stitch Fix shipments to fill the gaps in my wardrobe.

This time around, I was looking for casual chic layers for this colder than usual SoCal winter. Seriously, you'd laugh at me if you saw how warm it was yesterday when I picked up #2 from school. Regardless, I'm always cold. Here's what showed up in my first Fix of 2016!


Doesn't it look cozy? 

First up, the Mystree Almada Faux Shearling Vest in tan and white, $78


I thought maybe this time around I'd share the fabric content of the pieces. I was surprised to find this was a polyester spandex blend! It is super soft and delicious, in case you were wondering. My love for this piece affirms my definite love for boho styles.

I tried it on with nearly everything in sight. First, with a sweater I happened to be wearing that I'd just picked up from Marshall's (my only shopping find in nearly 6 hours of shopping).


Sorry for the weird lighting, I was using my mom as a tripod :)

I love the brown on black and white stripe combination, don't you? Mixed neutrals are really big this season. It's funny, when I bought this sweater I kept thinking it needed something. I tried it on with every scarf I owned the day before my Fix came, and nothing was really working. I can't wait to wear this to church next Sunday!

Here's a close up with better lighting.


Here's a picture of the back.


My mom wasn't a fan of the back, but I don't care. I wear clothes for me, and from the front I love this piece.

I thought the vest looked great with solids, too. Here it is over the next item from my Fix, the Papermoon Alecka Lace Sleeve Knit Top, $54


This one is a polyester spandex blend as well. I have a love hate relationship with this type of material. It's super soft, stretchy and comfortable. Unfortunately, it emphasizes every lump and bump.


Photo credit: #1. Thanks for making me look better than I really do kid.

I desperately wanted it to work because it looks so cute with my Kut from the Kloth Maribel Straight Leg Jeans. I don't know why, but I often have trouble finding something to wear with them. I received them in my 13th Fix, so I really haven't had long to experiment. Regardless, I wasn't about to send them back. They are SO comfortable and smooth as butter.

Back to the shirt, I love the romantic meets boho detail. It was the perfect length to cover my rear, too. Bye bye, beautiful top, I will miss you.

This is another one I was hoping would work with my Maribels, the Loveappella Cholame Split Back Knit Top in burgundy, $54.


This one is made from a rayon, polyester, spandex blend. It's a heavier weight, but very breathable. Isn't the split back detail fun?

   

Well, sadly I would've needed a size up in this one. It was tight and a tad bit short in the front. I wasn't sure enough it was going to work for me in a medium to request an exchange, so I sent it back. I really loved it though. Great color and style, and machine washable!

The next piece coordinated well with the Loveappella Cholame Top. This is the Skies are Blue Lowry Open Cardigan in black and white, $58. 

     

I also have to give photo credit to #1 for these, too. Because, the sarcastic faces. But also because you caught good hair shots. 

I loved a lot of things about this cardigan. It's 100% cotton, has a gorgeous open weave, and I love the length and fit. I just realized it was too similar to the cardigan from my very first Fix.

Here's a close up of the detail. Ughh..I can't believe I had to send this one back. But I just did a closet purge and am really trying to restrain from buying every single thing I like to make room for future loves. I know it's going to make someone very happy. Maybe you?


The last piece was the Papermoon Fausta Elbow Patch Raglan Knit Top in navy, $54.


The material, a polyester, spandex, rayon blend, reminded me of the space dye slub knit on the Market & Spruce Sawyer dolman my mom received and the Corinna dolman I had in my box last April.


Unfortunately, that material is just too scratchy for my dish pan hands and it wasn't quite long enough even in my size up. Boo, I actually really liked the elbow patch detail.

So, I ended up just keeping the vest, which I am happy about! Not only did I find a new favorite, I now have an excuse to order another box.

If you'd like to give Stitch Fix a try, I'd love it if you used one of my affiliate links:

It's super easy to sign up, and there are no long term commitments! You simply fill out a short questionnaire, select the date you'd like to receive a box, and pay a $20 styling fee. If you decide to keep any of the items, the $20 fee is applied to the price. Send back what you don't like in a prepaid envelope from your very own mailbox.

You can read about my previous experiences here:

In case you missed my last post, there are additional pictures of these items from the Stitch Fix iPhone App. Just click here:  How to Get Your Best Fix: Tips & Tricks

You can also pin the pictures from this post here:

I'd love to hear what you thought about this Fix. Leave a comment below!

Happy Tuesday!