To the Pointe

The term "ballet flats" is often used to describe round-toed flats with a little bow on it. They look more like ballet shoes for kindergarteners, not the pretty pointe shoes that ballerinas leap around in.

In the days before my rather short-lived shopping ban, I spotted this pair of flats for half-off at Target. I really like the summery print of the fabric, and with the pink faux-suede toe cap, it really does look like true "ballet flats." I wore them for the first time today with a retro-inspired outfit to drop off some things at the thrift store (which explains the short-lived nature of said shopping ban). Being forced to wear loose, flouncy clothing is the only silver lining to a case of exposure to poison oak during yesterday's outting.

[Paul and Joe for Target top, skirt from college theater department costume sale, Target flats]


Au Contraire

Very few recreational activities are free anymore, and given the bad economy, I take it that a lot of people are cutting back on movies, travel, and such. A New York Times article, which includes a feature on the always-witty Winona of Daddy Likey fame, says it all. Because gas is so expensive, people are either limiting their vacation travel by budget and/or distance, or they're foregoing vacations altogether.

That might explain the inordinate number of people I saw in the Malibu Creek State Park today. My lazy butt was dragged out the door for some exercise today, courtesy of some dedicated friends who planned the outting. It was a really hot day, and the park was packed. Most people were having fun in the sun, either fishing in streams that used to be rivers, doing cannonballs in a lake, or picnicing on sandwiches made with value-packs of white bread (yes, I did see someone carrying it as they walked by). My group, however, "hung around" in the shade. No sun for us, thank you very much. After enduring the exhaustion of "hanging around" (which was tiring indeed, because sometimes we would go around and around and around), it felt really good sit around in the shade, like a lazy summer afternoon should be.

When we picked up/dropped off one member of the group today, I spotted the most curious institution at the corner of the street. There are many outfits that do all of that under one roof, but none with an appellation so striking and contradictory vis a vis its multidisciplinary practice:

Surprisingly, "divorcios" seems to be more prominent than "casamientos." Hmm...

This tidbit has nothing to do with the normal discourse of this blog, but I figured it would be amusing. Enjoy the weekend, folks!

Holding Pattern

It's time to institute another shopping ban for nonessentials. While I've been getting fairly good deals, I need to be more selective with what I decide to buy. There will always be great sales, and I'll always end up finding something I love in place of those I forego, so I'm really not missing out on anything during the seasonal clearances happening now. But before I decided to turn off the spigot, I made one last purchase.

What I do need is matching bottoms to my light-colored suit jacket (also known as my "summer suit"). Since I was wearing the suit jacket the other day, hence acting as a walking color swatch, I figured it was a good time to do so. Alas, none was found at the stores that I would expect to be more of my type. So, I decided to try a place that I normally wouldn't visit--J. Jill.

There are certain stores selling clothing that is a little too "classic" for my tastes, and J. Jill is one of them. This is why I didn't even bother walking into the store before. However, I thought I should give it a chance, because my preconceptions could be wrong. It turns out that my preconceptions were not wrong, but I did find something to my liking. Given my ongoing efforts to stock up on cardigans for work, the Missoni-like knit cardigan caught my eye. I think it would work well as a transitional piece, be it from Spring to Summer or Summer to Fall. I also figured that this would go quite well with darker, more conservative pieces. When I decided to wear it the next day, I unwittingly discovered that it worked very well with my brightly-colored tops, which I would usually wear with dark blazers:

[Forever 21 blouse in kelly green, J. Jill long cardigan, J Brand jeans, Sigerson Morrison sandals]

I love how the patterns really hold the outfit together. The pattern itself is fairly classic, but the colors seem fairly youthful. Instead of going for the de facto blazer or black cardigan, I can now wear this with other colorful tops that would complement the earth-toned pattern. I received a lot of compliments on the day I wore the cardigan. For being just under $25 (about $90 off the original price), it came with a boatload of style.


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The lifespan of some blogs is somewhat like a bell curve: exponential postings and growth in the beginning, then it plateaus at some point. Beyond that, a blog can stagnate or slowly declines into oblivion when the blogger has no time to update, loses interest, etc., or it can take a nosedive plunge into cancellation, self-destruction, whatever you want to call it.

Apparently one of the links on my blogroll turned into some porn-related site. That came at quite a shock to me, as the title of the blog (and the URL) cannot be further away from porn. Thus, if you do click on something that turns out to be a dead link or something of a "surprise," please do let me know. The landscape of Blogland changes so quickly that I can't keep up with it.



Fool's Gold

As much as I love my new Chanel golden nail polish, "buyer's guilt" has set in. No, not so much "buyer's remorse," since I love it, got a lot of compliments on it, and the polish really is great stuff, but rather guilt for spending so much money on a bottle of nail polish. Further, to my chagrin, a quick search netted me a good number of thoughtful reviews. The nail experts seem to think it's good, but nothing special, while polish dilettantes like me are awed by the sight of gold.

Given the state of the economy, it just feels so ill-advised to be so free-wheeling. And it's rather against my better judgment and usual philosophy in shopping--to get the best thing for the lowest price. I could have gotten at least 3 bottles of high-quality nail polish right there, including that gunmetal one I wanted. To err is human, I suppose.

One important lesson I learned is to never underestimate the power of marketing. I thought that I'm pretty impervious to it, since I focus mainly on the quality of the product instead of the glossiness of the ad, but it's funny how shiny things caught me off guard. Another lesson is to give myself a break when I screw up. Sure, it probably wasn't the wisest choice I made, but if I dwell on it too much, I'll stop enjoying what I spent my money on. Now, that would be quite a waste.


Foot Soldiers

I usually don't care for tabloid magazines or shows, but a couple of nights ago I just had to watch "Access Hollywood." No, it wasn't so much for the latest celebrity gossip. I was wondering if all the paparazzis stationed all around the courthouse that morning (including those working for Access Hollywood, which left a microphone lying around in plain view) got the shot they were looking for.

I was already running behind schedule that morning, so I really wasn't happy to see the throngs of camera people milling about. I was even less thrilled when I came upon the atypically long security line at my favored entryway today. But something caught my eye. There was a disproportionate number of "fashiony types" in line. Not to say that those of us from the local bar are not fashionable--it's just that we don't wear a whole lot of flashy colors, and even if we do, there are only so many ways we can wear them. I mean, I was standing there in my beige skirt suit, powder blue shirt, and black patent pumps from Payless. One young woman a little ways in front of me was wearing a bright coral top, a pencil skirt, and bluish-teal slingback pumps. Someone standing behind her wore a cute little outfit with a shruken vest. Given that the regulars wear dark or neutral-hued shoes, they clearly stood out. Interestingly enough, Access Hollywood's little feature on Denise Richards, who apparently was the person all the aforementioned photographers were after, took enough time out from its "legal analysis" to focus on the fashion. Denise Richards was wearing a pair of greens shoes in a springy green to go with her black dress.

"Suits" like me would rarely get away with that. I have many a pair of colorful sneakers, pumps, and flats. And then I have quite a few pair of black pumps specifically for court dates. There's an obvious dichotomy here. In my mind, colorful is fun, and black is serious. Which brings me to a challenge--making black a little less serious to wear.

I recently bought a pair of black sneakers from DSW. Darker sneakers could conceivably be worn with a pair of long, dark, widelegged pants, and no one would really notice that sneakers were being worn. They're much more discrete than those white tennis shoes that office folks wear during lunch or commutes. I've only worn them for casual outfits, but I can see the potential.

Another pair of hardly-austere black footwear I acquired recently is a pair of black leather Sigerson Morrison gladiator sandals. Gladiator sandals are popular year in and year out, and I've been wanting a pair for quite a few years. The tough look can work quite well with shorts or girly dresses. At the same time, it's nice to have a flat sandal that is a little dressier than flip-flops. Trouble is, finding a pair I love has been difficult. I don't like it when sandals have too many straps, especially when they are rough and cut into the skin (like cheaper pairs tend to do). Besides, too many straps = too fussy for my tastes. When there too few straps, it's not really a gladiator sandal anymore. Luckily, Loehmann's had a 40% off clearance sale. And more luckily still, it didn't take me long to find the sandals.

There was only one pair left, and they happened to be in my size. The leather upper is so soft that I don't have to worry about having strap marks or cuts on my feet. They look fairly sophisticated for a casual pair of sandals, and they look sleek and uncomplicated. They can go with everything, ranging from casual to a little dressed-up. I thought they were especially striking in this stark black-and-white contrast of an outfit.

[dance club t-shirt (free, since I caught it), Forever 21 skirt, BCBG bag, Sigerson Morrison sandals]

At just under $80 including tax, they're over 75% off, but they're not cheap. However, since the style is recurrent without being trendy, I know it's a sound, lasting investment (a rarity amongst investments these days). Interestingly enough, a week after I bought these sandals, I found the knockoffs at Target. To me, the design is virtually identical. You can see for yourself.

This is probably the first time I own something that has been knocked-off, and it's a bit strange. Mine is way better in quality, and I enjoy having the "real thing" for once because I didn't have to sacrifice any arms and legs for it.


Silence is Golden

[Nota Bene: Related post here.]

It's always sad when a trusty accessory that has served me faithfully finally succumbs to age. The $20 riveted leather purse that I've carried to work nearly daily for the past 9 months, and on more occasions before that, has quit on me. The defect isn't "fatal" (as in "the bag doesn't empty its contents spontaneously"), but it's just not worth the cost of having it fixed. I've been carrying my nice black-and-white BCBG bag to work with me, but it's almost too nice for daily use. I'm always afraid that I'd spill something on it or get the buttery-soft leather scratched up. Hence, this weekend I went to sample sales and the mall in search of a classy bag that I can carry practicaly every day to work for the next few years. I'm practically a one-bag girl during the week, as I don't like the hassle of transferring all my things from one bag to another lest I'd leave something important behind. Given the daily use in a professional setting (in the office or in court), the potential bag has to be classic, sleek, sturdy, and not too big and unwieldy. Unfortunately, some of the bags had too high of a price tag for quality that is seriously lacking.

So I went home without what I've been looking for. But that's not to say I went home empty-handed. Instead, I went home with (oddly enough) a few bottles of nail polish. And I spent an uncharacteristically large sum on them.

The story behind coming home with three bottles of nail polish, all at different price levels, is quite amusing in of itself. I had walked into Bloomingdale's in search of a bag that someone told me about, hoping to find it on sale. I didn't find it. But on my way to the bag section, I passed through the rows of makeup counters, which were staffed a phalanx of makeup artists-cum-salespeople trying to grab my attention to "try" some of their products. With the exception of purchasing a Christmas gift there once, and trying out some makeup at a Macy's counter back in college, I haven't ventured to makeup counters at department stores, much less high-end ones. The reason is pretty obvious.

This time, however, I stopped at the Chanel counter out of curiosity. Given all that buzz over the various shades of "Le Vernis," I just had to see what makes them so special. The shades are very pretty, but I really didn't see why I would pay $20 for a bottle when I can go to the drug store to get something in the same or very similar shade for $1 to $8. The Black Satin shade, which was all the rage a year or two ago, really didn't impress me. I moved on to the display for the new Fall collection. There was a polish in a very lovely shade of dark fuschia-purple, but I've seen similar shades elsewhere. The Gold Fiction nail polish seemed pretty gimicky when I read about it (real 18k gold, blah blah blah), so I skipped that and went for the silver Kaleidoscope tester. When I saw it in a magazine, I really digged the gunmetal color. What I wanted is something dark without being completely black. Sadly, when I put it on, the polish was pretty but not all that dark. Since the Gold Fiction was the one I haven't tried yet, I figured I'd give it a go simply because it was there. To my surprise, it was really pretty. I just loved it. I could have bought it right then and there, but $30 was a lot to spend on a bottle of nail polish. I decided to walk around the mall some more to see if I can find a comparable (and cheaper) shade.

When I went into the MAC store, there were many crazy colors that I definitely cannot find in a drug store. I found that gunmetal shade I've been looking for, but I was just mesmerized by the acid-yellow-gold Phosphor. I've been looking for a yellow nail polish I liked, and this was it. It is completely fun, and I love metallics. Since the nail polish was $11 per bottle, I had to choose between the gunmetal or the yellow. The yellow won. Since it is not very difficult for me to get to a MAC store, I figured the gunmetal one can wait for another day.

[I usually have a thing against foot shots, but I'll make an exception this time out of expedience. The polish was totally rocking when sported with black open-toed flats today.]

Since neither the Chanel counter nor the MAC store had nail polish remover, I went over to Sephora. Upon cleaning off my nails, I discovered a $6 bottle of nail polish that greatly resembles the fuschia-purple Chanel nail polish I tried on. So, I took it home with me.

As my shopping trip wound down and I still couldn't find the work bag I wanted, I thought it would be a good time to leave. Still, I couldn't stop thinking about the Gold Fiction polish. I had gone as far as the parking lot, only to realize I was on the wrong side and had to go around again, and also to pay for parking at an automated pay stations. I ended up backtracking from whence I came, and then some. I backtracked all the way to Bloomingdale's, and I bought that bottle of nail polish. I don't think I've ever wanted something badly enough to go back and purchase it *at full price* EVER, but the lure was too strong for me this time.

As extravagant as this is (I'm not even going to justify it with a "seems"), I don't regret my decision. The nail polish is something I do love and something I can afford. Given the real possibility of it selling out, and given the fact that Bloomingdale's is nowhere near where I live, work, or visit, I probably wouldn't have been able to buy it if I were to change my mind later. For the amount of money spent, I actually got a rather good product. Some may find the color to be too subtle for their taste, but I actually like the subtlety of the rosy shade of gold. The MAC Phosphor polish is bright and raucous, which I love, but having it on means I can't show up to court tomorrow morning wearing peeptoe pumps. The Gold Fiction, however, can be best described as "understatedly glamorous." I can see that I have something on, and it is very pretty, but the color doesn't not call for too much attention, and it is certainly not tacky (as gold sometimes can be). This is exactly what I need for a polished, professional look. I must add that even a single sheer layer looks great, though another coat makes the color more intense.

[Edited to add: After doing a little bit of Googling, I found that Opi makes a pretty close alternative. It doesn't look like it's very easy to find, but it's a far less expensive alternative. (Edited again to add:) Sara found it, though--the Opi shade called "I Only Drink Champagne." ]

Finally, when I spend good money on something (be it good wine or nail polish), it is best enjoyed with family and friends. My mom can use it when she wants. My sister will take up my offer at a later time. As for my friends, they are of course welcomed to borrow the bottle the next time they drop by, or the next time I visit (for another round of Wii Fit, perhaps?).


To Hav and to Hold

The Bobbi Brown-designed Life's a Beach Havaianas I ordered from Saks Fifth Avenue (for less than $10!) finally landed on my doorsteps today...literally. I came home and the box was laying right across the doorway.

They are as cute as I imagined the to be. The color scheme is simply awesome. However, I have to say that I'm a little disappointed with the construction. On the underside of one of the flip-flops, the peg that holds the throng strap in place is bent and crooked--not what I'd expect in a $15 pair of flip-flops. But then again, they are flip-flips, and it is not in their nature to last forever and ever.

If you are so inclined to procure a pair while it is still available with free shipping, I would recommend sizing up. I was a little confused by the description on the SFA site--they're true to size, but if something is marked a 6/7, then it's a 6. Hmm...this description doesn't make sense until I actually got the flip-flops and saw what was printed on the shoe (see below). Since my feet are on the smaller side, I decided to go with 6/7 instead of 7/8. The pair I have does fit, but had I known that 6/7 really meant a solid 6, I would have sized up.


Tall Order

I try to stay away from "retail therapy." The act of buying things does not necessarily make me feel better when I'm feeling down or stressed out--no, instead, it makes me even more worried upon realization that I've just spent more money. The euphoria from the bright colors and pretty glitz ends by the time I hit the cash register. Even though my clothing allowance has gotten bigger now, I'm very reluctant to spend money on things that I couldn't afford "back then" but can afford now. It's a strange feeling, but it's good that my cheapskate roots keep me in check. The fun part of shopping isn't buying expensive clothes, as The Clothes Horse demonstrates daily. The fun part for me is the thrill of the hunt, finding great things at the lowest possible cost. If I do need "retail therapy," I'll seek out cheap thrills.

That said, having an expanded clothing budget does open some doors. I used to avoid walking into boutiques because I knew I can never afford to buy anything in them; now I can walk in without that sense of guilt, even though I don't necessarily plan on buying anything. Also, the old adage of "you get what you paid for" does ring true in some respects. I'm very proud of my collection of cheap clothes and shoes that look great, but the quality isn't necessarily all there. Also, cheap shoes that start off comfortable lose that comfort over time, or they get battered easily (as I mentioned before, simply puttering around the courts can do major damage to my shoes). The cheap $5 sunglasses that I wore all the time look great and garner a lot of compliments, but they don't always go with the more "serious" outfits I sometimes have to wear. To a certain extent, my wardrobe needed an "upgrade."

Whenever I do decide to pursue the "upgrade" items, I wait patiently for the right opportunity. The summer sales, in conjunction with birthday coupons, can add up to big savings. Consequently, I scored big on this pair of Ray Bans. I've been wanting a pair of nice sunglasses that look professional and also properly protect my eyes; the cheap lenses of cheap sunglasses don't adequately do their jobs. When I went to the Beverly Hills Loehmann's, there were two walls devoted to (mostly designer) sunglasses. I skipped over the trendy big frames and went for something more lithe. The Ray Bans are the most comfortable and well-fitting pair of sunglasses I own. Because the earpieces are flexible, they fit my small head well without hurting me, which sunglasses tend to do upon prolonged wear. They were marked $50, but when I went to pay for them, I found out that there was an additional 15% discount, on top of the 15% birthday discount I elected to use. I ended up spending a lot less money than I planned. I wear them practically every day now.

I also took advantage of the birthday coupon situation when I splurged on a pair of Converse sneakers. They weren't cheap, and admittedly I probably shouldn't have so much for them ($45 after discount), but I'm more willing to spend money on things I find to be unusual and long-lasting. I don't often see plaid sneakers that I like, and flashy footwear tend to jazz up my colorblock clothing. These have been quite comfortable for long jaunts around town on foot.

I saved the big splurge for the last. This is officially the most expensive pair of shoes I own. I bought it around the time of my birthday, but it wasn't a birthday purchase. Rather, it's one of the rare "retail therapy" trips that I took after I finished a big fat motion for summary judgment. For those of you who have experienced the pleasure of writing one, you'll understand how much "fun" it is (no, really). That's right--the all day and all night caffeine-fueled kind of fun. This one was particularly taxing for a variety of reasons. I was just so happy and exhausted when I finshed that I felt like I needed to unwind. I've been looking for a pair of dressy summer sandals, which I do need, so I headed over to DSW after work. After walking past aisle after aisle, I came upon a pair of Givenchy leather sandals with the most curious wooden wedge heel. The heel had a kind of an architectural quality to it. That particular shoe didn't fit, and after putting them on, I realized they weren't really my type. I remained fascinated with the wooden wedge, so I looked around for something simlar. Sure enough, I found these at 40% off:

They're perfect for the summer. Usually I eschew wooden soles because they are hard and uncomfortable, but for some reason, these aren't the norm. They actually felt quite good. I believe the substantial layer of rubber on the bottom of the sole absorbs the pressure from pounding the pavement. I don't like showy logos, which is why I simply passed by the sandals of the same shape but with a logo-print canvas upper. The logo is on these, but the myriad of colors in the woven straw makes the logo almost imperceptible. Also, the t-strap assembly looks very classic. Best of all, they give me height without hurting my feet. However, all these benefits come at a steep price. At almost $200 including tax, these really are the most expensive pair of shoes I owned. But I hardly felt a tinge of guilt--at the time, I felt like I worked hard and deserved them (which usually is self-justifying rationalization, but it didn't feel like it in this case). Also, I just absolutely loved them, for the reasons I stated above and for another reason that I couldn't fathom at the time.

It was only a few weeks later that I discovered why I love them so much. My aunt remarked about how old these sandals are, at which time I corrected her, saying that the sandals are new. Then it dawned on me--these platform sandals bear a great resemblance to my most favorite pair of shoes ever, the pair that I was never able to find a replacement for. Years ago, I bought a pair of platform sandals from Payless for $7. The sandals have thick black straps with a similar color scheme as the Givenchy pair. I wore those sandals all the time, and I even ran in them. Alas, the heel wasn't altogether stable enough to properly distribute the forces, and after three years of wear, one sandal had completely split in half. Given how sturdy my new pair of shoes are, I'm sure they will last far longer than the 3 years my last favorite pair lasted me. I've already worn them quite often, including once for a wedding:

Obviously I won't make it a habit to spend like this. In fact, I'm all shopped out now. I could have gone out and shopped in celebration of winning the said motion, as someone suggested, but I didn't really feel like it. I did end up picking up a nice cheap tanktop for myself, but that was done while I was on a gift-shopping trip, not a woohoo-let's-go-shopping spree.

I'll close out today's post with some humor. Let's just say my friends really know me well:

(Thanks B!)


Feeling a little flippant

When I first saw the "Life's a Beach" Havaianas sandals, I couldn't help but chuckle and want a pair. But I couldn't bear the thought of paying double-digits for a pair of flipflops plus shipping, when I know that flipflops could be had for $3 a pair down at Target or Old Navy.

Thanks to Closet Therapy, I found out that they're on sale at an unlikely place--the Saks Fifth Avenue website. At $9, they seem to be more reasonable. But what about shipping? Sometimes they come out to more than the purchase itself. Fortunately, they offer free shipping until 7/17. I just snatched up a pair and can't wait for them to get here. As I currently have only 1 pair of flipflops in bright green, which doesn't necessarily go with everything, the new pair would be a fun addition.


Forever 21 Does Cashmere (Blend)

What a difference a day makes! Over the long weekend, there was a lot of frolicking around in the heat. On Sunday, I wore my short shorts. On Monday, it was back to being all business. Hard to switch gears, but the long weekend definitely did me some good.

My all-business outfit was comprised of a $3 v-neck t-shirt from Charlotte Russe (which is surprisingly versatile for work), a pair of sandals I splurged on (more on that on another day), and two new items I picked up from Forever 21. After a long drought, I've had quite a bit of luck there lately. Although it can be really hot these days, it's not too early to look for clothes suitable for the cooler months. In California, they can actually be worn even during the summers--on work days, the office is freezing; at night, there are times when the weather drastically cools down.

In the last 6 months or so, I've been adding quite a few cardigans to my arsenal of workwear. They make dressing up for work really easy--I can wear a comfortable t-shirt underneath along with pants/jeans without looking shabby. This brown-with-plum-trim number is a new addition. Despite the less-than-perfect workmanship (things not necessarily sewn on straight), I really love this cardigan from the slightly more "upscale," if you will, Twelve by Twelve line. The brown is on a more conservative side, but the plum-colored trim adds a nice splash of color. I usually eschew buttonless cardigans, but this one is perfect when worn open, as the muted tones allow whatever is worn underneath to show off a little. The belt is really long, so I had to wrap it around twice. It works quite well this way. Best of all, it is incredibly soft and comfortable, not at all itchy and scratchy as some budget sweaters are prone to be. Initially, I thought it felt like a cashmere sweater, notwithstanding the fact that I was standing in Forever 21. Indeed, there was 10% cashmere in the knit. For $28, it's a pretty good buy.

As for the pants, I spied them on the clearance racks. While a little loose at the waist, the pants fit quite well everywhere else. I thought that they'd be $15 or so as written on the tag, but to my surprise, they turned out to be just $8. Great pants for $8? Doesn't happen very often. Now that I have a sewing machine, I can (eventually) make them look and fit like a million bucks.


Bright Stripes

Most of my closet is dominated by solid colors. I have a few floral patterns here and there. Then, there's a ton of stripes. I don't know hy I'm so fascinated by stripes. I like simple prints, but I also want simplicity to make a big impact. Contrasting stripes do the trick.

But I'm also taken by contrasts that are less subtle. There's something about yellow and gray. Yellow is flashy and playful, and gray is sophisticated without being stuffy. When blended together, the contrast is noticeable yet subtle, as if both tones are a bit washed out (but in a good way). It's nice to have something that's noticeable without being showy.

I have a cute, thin sweater with stripes in gray and an orange-yellow, but that yellow just doesn't resonate with me quite like the bright yellow of this t-shirt I found at Forever 21 last week. I paired it with a subtle-colored shrug and shorts and colorful accessories today. I haven't worn a retro-inspired outfit for a while, and the big holiday weekend seemed like the perfect time for it.

[Sunglasses from A. J. Wright, Forever 21 t-shirt, Mike & Chris shrug, American Eagle shorts, thrifted Olay bag, thrifted electric-blue pumps]

I haven't worn these sunglasses for a while, and I'm happy to have rediscovered them. I bought them from the most unlikely place--A.J. Wright. There was one that was relatively-newly opened in my hometown, so I decided to check it out. The home goods were passable, but I was not impressed with the clothing selection. However, I found these retro-looking sunglasses for $5. These are pretty good for being budget sunglasses--the metal frames were sturdy, the wintermint-green shade was perfectly swanky, and the little white dots all around were just the perfect embellishments.

Hope you all enjoyed your long weekend. It'll be hard to get back to work tomorrow, but it felt good to finally have a long weekend off.


And the Rocket's Red Glare

Happy 4th of July, folks! Enjoy the free fireworks, barbeques, and freely-flowing beverages (I'll leave it to you to decide what kind).

Every year, I wear a red-white-and-blue outfit to celebrate the occasion. Most of the time I've busted out an old $3 red-and-blue-stripe-with-white-trim halter I got from Ross. This year I'm doing something a little different.

[Ella Moss top, old pair of workout shorts in a hard-to-discern navy blue, Chinese Laundry espadrilles (also from eons ago), BCBG bag]