Awards Day!!!

Wow, HUGE thanks to the two “lovely” ladies Aquahlekkergarla and Cioccolatoscuro who nominated my blog for the One Lovely Blog Award (and on the same day no less)!!!!   Thanks so much for such a special nomination.  I am beyond excited, to say the least, so please be sure to check out their blogs when you get a chance!!  Thank you, thank you, thank you ladies!!!  

Now, I haven’t been blogging very long but I must admit that I LOVE IT.  This was initially just a way for me to express myself a little bit more – an outlet of sorts – but it has, in fact, become a PASSION of mine now.  It’s just so much FUN!  Thanks to all of my followers and everyone who has stopped by for all of the comments, support and words of encouragement to date.  It’s been simply great.

Now, I understand that there are a few key rules to accepting this award:

  1. I need to nominate 15 other bloggers that I admire (easy)
  2. Leave a comment on their site letting them know they’ve been nominated
  3. Tell 7 things about myself that you may not know

So, here are the 15 bloggers that I admire (some have been nominated previously but they are truly some of my favorites):

  1. AsTimeGoesBuy
  2. Hautefrugalista
  3. Overmystyledbody
  4. Hisfashionblog
  5. Thewalkntalk
  6. Lezoemusings
  7. Homesandheels
  8. Fast-fashion-blog
  9. Corcordejesus.wordpress.com
  10. Abigailsterling.wordpress.com
  11. Jthimothe.wordpress.com
  12. Thechicagolifeblog.com
  13. Aprettypennyblog.com
  14. Katespanish.com
  15. Yasmincruz.me

Now, 7  things about me:

  1. Pink is absolutely my favorite color of all time
  2. My favorite food combo is (oddly enough) — any form of bacon, potatoes and cheese
  3. My favorite vacation spot is Hawaii
  4. I collect writing pens (ok, I’m mildly obsessed)
  5. I am a huge football fan – Go Panthers!
  6. I am fascinated by Fire Trucks (don’t even ask)
  7. My favorite TV show right now – The Walking Dead (ready for Season 3 please!!)

Thanks again everyone!!!  Happy Hump Day Tomorrow!

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Charlotte Restaurant Week – Queen’s Feast Fashion Style

Today is the last day in Charlotte’s restaurant week.  Now, for those of you not familiar with the concept, this is truly a food lovers fantasy.  It’s a fairly simple idea; local restaurants participate in a 10 day food fest – offering at least 3 courses for a flat $30.  That’s right…  3 courses – $30!  Clearly, it’s a win-win for everyone.  It runs 2 times per year, generally during slow periods like mid-summer or right after the Christmas holidays.  It’s a sales boost for restaurant owners and an opportunity for us regular folk to eat gourmet style on a frugal budget!!  Didn’t I say win-win?  It’s gotten really popular over time and more and more cities are starting to participate.  I love it!  It’s a great chance to check out the city’s ever changing restaurant landscape.

So, last night we decided to check out Paco’s Tacos and Tequila.  

Primarily because they offered 4 courses and a margarita!  Yep, that’s right, add a margarita to the deal and I’m sold!!  But it turned out to be an excellent choice.  The spot itself was hoppin’!  I honestly couldn’t believe I didn’t know about it before.  Great bar vibe and packed!!  The food was excellent – Texas style – flavorful and filling!!!

Now, I decided to grab one of my Nordstrom Rack finds for my night out…. ( you may remember this photo from my post last weekend).  Of course, everybody knows by now that I’m a big color blocking fan.   I think this top is a great example of the unexpected contrast of colors.  I decided to pair it with some basic black shorts and my fav color blocked pumps (of course)!  So, what do you think?  Would you have paired this differently?  Let me know.

What I’m Wearing: Kim and Cami Top, Ann Taylor Shorts, BCBG Color Block Pumps, Vintage Purse, Versona Accessories

And for those of you interested in where other Restaurant Week’s are held:

Have a great week everyone!!!

The Rack Reloaded….

Ok, so I’ve come to grips with the fact that I’m definitely an impulse buyer .  I just tend to go with my gut when shopping — I usually immediately know that I like something.  But even with that gut response, I’m not always sure how it’s going to all come together.   Do I have something to pair it with?  What shoes work best?  What accessories?  Will it translate well?  Nope, none of those things even cross my mind until I get home.

So, I thought it would be interesting to show how I actually pull it together.

You probably remember the Maggy London print dress from my Saturday shopping trip at Nordstrom Rack.  I liked this dress from the start – lots of  “potential” – but despite the vibrant print, I still felt that it needed a little bit more flair.

So, I added this light tan leather belt, a great J. Crew Gold Pearl Necklace and some navy and white MIA wedge sandals.  I chose the belt because it was light and would counter some of the warmer tones.  And I love the fact that the sandals go with it — but in a slightly “off” way.  If you think about it, adding the shoes is a great way to “venture” into pattern mixing.  And of course you know that I love to add a belt — and in this instance — I think it truly helps define the outfit – giving it more character.  For me, this was a great work ensemble.  It had enough personality to stand out but wasn’t way over the top for the office.  What do you think?

Inside the Rack… (Nordstrom that is)

Everyone that knows me knows that I love to shop and knows that I pretty much spend every Saturday afternoon doing it. Yep, every Saturday afternoon.  I actually look forward to doing it (silly me) —

but after a generally crazy week at work, I find it very relaxing – it’s like my own personal therapy!  Now, traveling had thrown me off my game a little bit (I mean I hadn’t actually been in nearly 2 months *gasp*) but no worries…  today I was able to get back to business.  See, that’s me – super excited — and on my way!!

My first stop back… Nordstrom Rack.  (And yes, I know I have been shopping while traveling but everybody knows THAT doesn’t count!!)

Anyway, I love “The Rack” .  In my opinion, it’s a girl’s best friend — best of both worlds.  Awesome selection from Nordstrom Stores and Nordstrom.com BUT at discounted prices.

You can’t lose!!  Of course I happened upon plenty of good finds (Halogen Wedge Platforms and Marco Senti Color Block Pumps for example).  

But the first cool thing that I noticed is that they’ve added this “On the Spot” checkout system.  It’s very similar to what Apple does.   I like it a lot.  They basically have associates with scanners at free standing checkouts.  So no waiting in line.  You can pretty much checkout anywhere in the store.  It’s pretty cool and should be great during peak shopping periods.  Nice look.

Okay, so this was my outfit of the day…   What I’m Wearing: Victoria’s Secret One Shoulder Tee, J. Crew Chino Shorts, J. Crew Necklace, Versona Accesssories, Kate Spade Aviators, Franco Sarto Sandals (you can’t see them), Louis Vuitton Neverfull Tote

Now, on to a couple of my finds…  Just some quick ones.  I saw this Maggy London dress and thought it was cute..  I love the ethnic print.  I’ll probably add a belt and wah-lah…  great for work.  In fact, I’ll probably wear it Monday!!  And I found a couple of cute tops too.  Great color blocked halter ( Kim and Cami –black, pink and ORANGE).  Now, you wouldn’t think the colors would mix well but it was hot!!  (And of course, I just happened to have on orange shorts).  And finally this cute tie knot top (Willow & Clay).  Also — orange.  (I wasn’t kidding when I say I get “color” obsessed).  It was kind of sheer and had great texture to it though – great for a night out!  I like this one with some nice white shorts or maybe yellow.  But my final find was….  BOOTS (Marco Santi).  Yes, yes – how fickle is thy heart.  My love affair with summer may be waning.  And alas, I am already thinking fall.  I can already see me with these boots and my skinny jeans!!

What do you think?

The Tuxedo Blazer

Seeing my first design come to life has invigorated me.  I have so many ideas! In fact, this past weekend,  I was like a kid in the candy store at Mary Jo’s (my favorite fabric spot)….  Literally running through the aisles –from one side of of the store to the other.  Sheer madness and yet giddy with excitement!!  I’m sure I received a few of those “weird” stares from some of my fellow patrons but I couldn’t help it …. it was so much fun!!  Seeing all the fabric choices just inspired me even more.

You see, the blazer itself is such a classic and simple fashion concept, yet there are almost an unlimited number of modifications that can be made to it.  Bold colors — patterned fabrics — small design tweaks and you have an entirely different look.  (I’m giddy again!!!)

This is my latest modification to my short sleeve blazer design…. an added tuxedo flair.  Elongated front panels (instead of the back tails).  Exaggerated lapels with tuxedo trim details.  So, what do you think?

I’ll be starting the construction of the next set of blazers within the next week so — more to come soon!!

Trending Now: Blazers with Shorts

If you haven’t noticed, designers have gone crazy mixing blazers with shorts.  It’s been all over the runways for 2013 resort wear collections — so of course that means there is no better time for you to add it your summer style!  And there are so many variations of the trend, that is is easy to make it your very own.

Now, if you’ve been reading my blog, you know that I personally love the glam rocker look.  Nothing like the classic t-shirt with a cute pair of shorts (or jeans or skirt) and a pair of wicked wedge sandals.  And if you’ve been reading my blog, you ALSO know that I’ve been working on my own design for a short sleeved blazer.  So, needless to say, this felt like the perfect time to bring the two together.

So, yes, this is it.  My 1st jacket (designed by me) is complete.  Huge shout to Erin Brohanon of RCB Fashion who constructed it for me.  She finished it for me earlier this week.  Believe me, it’s taken everything that I have not to immediately blog about it (I just had to finish my New Orleans series 1st) and it’s taken COMPLETE restraint not to wear the doggone thing every single day.  No surprise right? — I love it!  I could not be more pleased with the finished product.  It is a little surreal you know.  But it’s also extremely exciting – almost intoxicating.  My mind is going a million miles per hour.  I’ve got so many ideas, so many thoughts…  And it’s all just flooding out now.  So much I want to do.

What I’m Wearing: Kenya L Designs Blazer (woo-hoo!!), J. Crew Tee, J. Crew Chino Shorts, MIA Wedge Platform Sandals, J. Crew Necklace, Versona Accessories Bracelet and Earrings and Kate Spade Aviator Sunnies

At this point, I’m just taking it all in and letting it evolve.  My next step is to produce a small group and test them out for sale online.  I already have a few custom orders – which is beyond cool.  Let me know what you think and be on the look out for my 1st sales….

Happy Weekend Everyone!!!

Oh and am I the only one who is completely stoked about Season 10 of Project Runway in 5 days??!!  (Yes, I am counting down).

Essence Music Festival: Fashion and Fun

First off, I have to give a huge shout to the local Bed and Breakfast, Sully’s Mansion, where we stayed during our time at the Festival.  I’m almost embarrassed to say that this was my 1st stay at a Bed and Breakfast.  Yep, that’s right.  1st stay — had never done it before.  It was beyond worth the experience.  The B&B was simply exquisite.  I really don’t have the proper words to describe it.  It is definitely an “experience” that everyone must have.  The house itself is beautiful both inside and out.  So much personality and character and every inch of it immaculately decorated.  

But what really made the stay stand out for me was the innkeepers, Nancy and Guy Fournier.

You won’t meet more genuine people.  And it’s evident they love what they do.  You feel at home the moment you walk through the door.  It is simply a great place to stay.

Now, on the the festival activities….

Me and my friends’ Fashion for the Friday Night Show (which was awesome by the way – Charlie Wilson is a “must see” to say the least!)

What I’m Wearing: J. Crew Romper,  Franco Sarto Sandals, J. Crew Necklace, Laura Merkin Clutch

And here are my finds from the Festival vendors….

There was pretty good selection of vendors but I think my favorite was Afrodesiac Worldwide (check out her site http://www.afrodesiacworldwide.com/index.php).

I love the vibrant prints — traditional African – and all of her pieces were beautiful — with that kinda retro glam and funky feel to them (Jumpsuit and Clutch).   What do you think?