November 23, 2016

J. Crew Black Friday Sale : 40% Off

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Even the sale section is included in J.Crew’s 40% off Black Friday sale! (Sale section discount is 50% on some pieces). Yes, they’ve got the elevated basics (that I love to stock up on) covered but this year there are so. many. bold. surprises. I’m in love with their luxe¬†bright wool coats, amazing shoes & statement jewelry.

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August 13, 2013

My Fall 2013 Styleboard

I've been working away on a 2013 Fall Essentials list for moms (coming out soon!!) but one trend* became very clear:

The 90's are back.

(*it could be argued that 'the 90's', are, in fact, multiple trends and yes OK fine.  Agreed.)

But it's the best of the 90's.  It's minimalist-grunge with twists of glamour…and a 70's influence thrown in.  It's fabulous fur-lined army parkas and flannel shirts worn as jackets and wool beanies and cozy sweaters (oh, the cozy sweaters Mamas) and streamlined cargo pants and monochromatic head-to-toe black, buffalo check everything and corduroy flare fabulousness.

And really.  I could go on and on but instead I'll just shut up and show you:


FallstyleboardANMJ
(images, clockwise from top left: Vince, Maje Fall 2013, Joie, ShopbopMaje Fall 2013, ASOS MagMaje Fall 2013)

 

Bust out your Doc Martaans, Mamas.  I may even find an upgraded turtleneck this year.  I know!!

And pregnant Mamas who are looking for a sleek, super-stretchy black pant…J.Crew just announced the Maternity Minnie. Yesss.

xo,

S

ps.  The next time we chat, I will have new, 18-year-old boobs.  Just sayin'.  

 

 

April 18, 2012

Wearing Rainboots: Inspiration Through the Seasons (And $100 Giveaway to Bogs!)

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This post is an update to our original How To Wear Rainboots – For Moms article, originally published in March of 2009.  It was in dire need of an update.  Especially since it remains as one of our top-hitting posts.  Crazy.  

When I wrote it, rainboots were being worn everywhere by celebrities and just starting to be embraced by the general population.  But rainboots still seemed a bit out-of-place unless it was actually raining.

Since then, rainboots have come into their own and are now considered a valid boot-about-town.  And while I still think they look silly on a sunny day walking down a dry sidewalk, I've amended my original "rules" (which were totally annoying anyway).

When Moms Should Wear Rain Boots

  1. When it is raining.
  2. When it is wet — meaning puddles are on the ground.
  3. When you might be wading in a stream, mud bed, or pond.

Let's just summarize things into the following statement:  Wear rainboots whenever you feel like it.  I'm going to guess that most moms will probably feel like it when it's raining, snowing, generally wet, muddy, or on a cold, gray, day.  Or during a cool summer downpour.  


What Kind of Rain Boots Moms Can Wear
[Again, from the original article]

  1. Tall plain ones – hunter green, dark gray, bright yellows, red, etc.
  2. Tall black patent leather ones — the sheen of these boots will look a little more sophisticated.
  3. Some patterns are OK for the brave — but proceed with caution on this one.  Skip the Hello Kitty boots, skip the ladybugs, skip anything with rainbows or anything that you think an 8 year old would want to borrow.  If reading this makes you nervous, stick with plain.

I'm actually OK with this advice.  But I'd also add that rainboot styles have exploded in recent years.  If you aren't a fan of the typical wellie, there are now rainboot wedges, booties, rubber motorcycle boots and, one of my personal favs, duck boots.  Here are some super-cool, non-wellie rainboots:

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March 5, 2012

My Newest Obsession: StyleMint for Cool, Affordable T-Shirts

Mamas, I've been meaning to post about Stylemint for quite some time now.  However, I owed it to you dear readers, to figure out how to successfully decline the monthly tee from what is basically a modern version of a CD-of-the-month.  But with t-shirts.  But I'm getting ahead of myself.

Screen Shot 2012-03-01 at 11.00.32 AMT-shirts, you may have noticed, are a pretty big deal these days.  This wardrobe basic has come into it's own, and is often the focal point of an outfit.  Much like denim was revolutionized when "Sevens" came into existence, the simple t-shirt is now anything but.  Designers like Alexander Wang are turning out tees that are gorgeously drapy, with interesting little details like rolled hems, a slightly asymmetrical neckline or a flyaway shape.  These new tees manage to retain the casual charm of a classic tee "this old thing?" but they work equally well as part of a dressy ensemble. 

(photo credit: T by Alexander Wang at Shopbop)

My issue, however, is that many of these tees are dry clean only, and most have a price point range of $60 – $120.  

Which, OK, isn't horrible for something that you could wear every day.  The price-per-wear works out pretty well.  But the dry-clean thing doesn't work.  At all.

And while I'll admit there are other places to find tees (J.Crew's tissue tees being one of my favs)…when compared with the high-end tees, they don't quite measure up.  There's just a little more style, a better drape, and a few more interesting details in the higher-end tees.  Sometimes, you do get what you pay for.

Enter Stylemint.

I was hesitant, upon hearing about Stylemint's business model, simply because I was burned one-too-many times by the CD-of-the-month clubs as a kid.  (OK – just one time.  But my Mom said, "NO MORE!" and that was that.)  And I'll admit that Stylemint is hardly upfront about how things work.  Here's what they say:

You're in Charge

  • It's FREE to look! Get a FREE StyleProfile. Never an obligation to buy!
  • Start your membership with your first purchase!
  • All T Shirts are just $29.99 each!
  • You only receive what you order. We'll email you at the beginning of every month with your Showroom based on your StyleProfile.
  • Choose to buy or skip a month in the first 5 days at
    no charge! [emphasis mine]
  • Shipping is always FREE!
  • Returns are EASY!

 

Ok – so I guess they do infer that you need to do something at the beginning of each month.  But it took me a few months (embarrassing, but true) to figure out how.  HOWEVER….the tees are so fabulous that I almost didn't care.

Mamas, these tees are soft, drapey, and oh-so-crazy-chic.  They are, without exaggeration, the new workhorses of my closet. I've been wearing my Stylemint tees constantly, and the price-per-wear is now shockingly low.   

Here are a few of my favs:

Screen Shot 2012-03-04 at 7.11.19 PM
(wearing: on left – J. Brand Houlihans in navy, LOFT skinny belt, Stylemint Abbott-Kinney tee…on right – Stylemint Charlton tee)

I love how these tees are so chic that they work equally well hanging out with the kiddos as they do on date night:

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October 19, 2011

Reader Question: Styling Cropped Cargo Pants Into Fall?

 

Reader Question:
Screen Shot 2011-10-02 at 4.44.28 PM How would you style cropped cargo pants into fall?  I've been wearing the heck out of a pair of olive cropped cargo pants  this summer. They were from Hot Mama in the spring, and no pics available anymore on their site, but they look sort of like Joie's Generette Pant (pictured).
 
Over the summer, these pants have been a staple of my "momiform," work mainly with a black or a green J crew tank top and some black flat sandals with little leather flowers to girlie up this otherwise somewhat tough look. 
 
Here in Minneapolis there's a chill in the air already, and a girl needs a bit more coverage for the morning coffee/playground/grocery stroll.
 
My favorite shoe for fall – the lace up combat-ish boot – comes off as too literal with the army green cargoes. Sneaks with socks seem a bit dowdy, and there is too much fabric at the legs to tuck into my favorite knee high motorcycle boots without looking like a member of a WW2 German motorbike brigade.
 
But, these pants are comfortable, washable, and crazy flattering. How would you style them to get another couple months of wear?
 
– Abby in Minneapolis

Answer:

Abby – great question!  This is a tricky styling situation!  As you mentioned, these pants are too wide for tucking into boots….and the weather is too cold to go without socks.  (Which I mention only because these pants would look adorable with ballet flats, oxfords or loafers sans socks.  Of course.) 

So.  You want to wear these pants, into the Fall, with warm footwear options.  Gotcha.

Now, I don't have a pair of pants exactly like these, but for this tricky styling situation, I didn't want to rely on a Polyvore collage.  So I "spoofed" your pants by rolling up a slouchy pair of straight-leg khakis.  The color obviously, is different, but I think the overall effect is the same.  Here's what worked for me:

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May 2, 2011

Mom Style Translation: Khakis Paired With Pops of Neon (and Animal Print)

I love this pic that Streetstyle Aesthetic snapped during London Fashion Week:

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While I would love to lounge around in my high heels and silk ruffled top carrying everything I need in a bright clutch (sigh)…it's sooo not gonna happen.

However, this girl is rockin' it.  And her color choices are nothing but totally inspired. 

I love the loose definition of a suit here – khaki pants and army green jacket, paired with the bright pops of color.  And animal print shoes?  They are just off enough (yet match enough) to work.  Perfectly imperfect.

To make this outfit mom-friendly…well, it's easy:  Swap the heels out for flats, the clutch out for a larger bag, and throw on a washable yellow top.

Per usual, I have a little collage (below) to translate this into a mom-friendly look.  However, I thought it would also be fun to try and see if M and I could use this pic as inspiration for our own outfits, using what we already have in our closet. 

Here's what we came up with:

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April 19, 2011

Not Your Father’s L.L. Bean – Signature Summer Line Has Us Drooling!

I did a double take followed by a triple check when, late last week, I found myself perusing–and drooling over–an L.L. Bean catalog I'd just received in the mail.  I'm on the L.L. Bean mailing list because I've purchased everything from ExOfficio sun and insect shield shirts for my sportsman dad, and a British Slip Lead to keep our unruly dog in check, to monogrammed Adventure Duffels for both boys (they'll have them forever), and I'm pretty sure I'll score the Sea-Washed Canvas Duffel for hubs for Father's Day.  Frankly, L.L. Bean sells great stuff: for guys and dogs and kids and moms who like pleated trousers and polo shirts.  But I have never, not even once, considered purchasing something for myself (okay, maybe duck boots). Until now. 

As it turns out, the outdoor gear and polo shirt purveyor's new collection, L.L. Bean Signature (led by Alex Carleton, a veteran of Polo Ralph Lauren, Abercrombie & Fitch and Rogues Gallery, his own line) has quite a few stunning spring and summer looks.  Here are our picks:

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March 8, 2011

Gorgeous, Wear-Everywhere, Pooch-Hiding, Nursing-Friendly Tops For Spring and Summer

P3069805 While I'm still totally addicted to my pooch-hiding sweater, I do realize that once the temps warm up, I'm going to need a new alternative.  The hunt is on! Or…was on, rather.

On a quick shopping trip right before I took the boys to Gulf Shores, I stumbled upon two gorgeous pieces that are pooch-hiding perfection. 

They are effortless, cool (from both a temperature and style perspective), and best of all?  No shaper cami required!

Voila…

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January 27, 2011

What Moms Wear: New Mom Amber’s Faux-Fur Jacket & Heels

P1088140  Readers, this is my dear friend Amber.  Some of you may remember her from this article where she chastised me for my original position on over-the-knee boots. 

"Let your moms be hot!  Tell your moms they have a RIGHT to be hot!"

Yes.  And now Amber is a hot-mom herself, of the crazy-adorable baby Harlow.  And when we met up with Amber & the fam recently, her outfit made me a bit nostalgic.

I remember after R was born, when the weekend came I would gleefully don my high, high heels and get all glammed up, knowing that my husband was there to do the baby lifting.  Even if we were just going to Target.  As R got bigger, our weekends started to be less baby-focused and more toddler focused (key difference:  chasing) and I stopped rocking my sky-high heels.

I miss those heels.

So if you can tear your eyes off of Harlow and her insanely cute flower headband (reason enough to try for a third child, right?)…let's chat about Amber's outfit.

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December 14, 2010

Styling An All-Black Outfit (Including the LBD) For Holiday Parties

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(wearing: Vince Cashmere Ruffle Tunic, currently on sale at Neiman's Last Call, Joe's Jeans Skinny Cargos in black, Nine West TheLineUp bootie, my mom's prom purse, an old glittery necklace, and Stella & Dot's Glint Flower Earrings.)

I don't know if it's the state of my post-partum pooch, general exhaustion (no amount of makeup can hide my tired eyes in these pics), or a heightened sensitivity due to the crazy, crazy year M has endured…but I'm having a bit of trouble mustering my normal level of enthusiasm for holiday parties.  And while I'm usually drawn to all things sparkly and glam, this year I'm sticking with an old (and fairly unimaginative) standby:  all black.

So how to make the LBD (little black dress) or…even worse, an all black outfit look like something party-worthy, as opposed to a tribute to Johnny Cash?

(I do love Johnny, though.)

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