Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Taking a New Look at K-Mart

My eyes are wide open to the lower priced brands brought to us by such stores as JCPenney and K-Mart. The ads for K-Mart in recent fashion magazines have been eye catching and look luxe on paper. I recently purchased two items and so wished the third had been available in my size. And talk about affordable! Ladies, there are no more excuses for not shopping! You can totally stock up at these prices.

The first item is this adorable romper. The animal print is so on trend and the material is breezy and comfortable. I realize that it’s strapless, however, that can be remedied with a black cardigan, a cropped jean jacket or my military jacket. Shown here in flats, I will more than likely pair mine with heels or wedges. But, flats will be a great alternative when wearing this outfit for a full day of running errands. 

In addition to an everyday outfit, this will be adorable for a night out. I would definitely leave the look strapless, but add strappy heels and fun jewels. I’m ready for sun, a tan and to sport this great romper!

The second item is this great Band Jacket in ivory. I love the military lapel, the epaulettes on the shoulder and the tiny brown pinstripe within the jacket. Paired with jeans and my fitted brown tee, this look will be casual and great for cool summer evenings. It will also look great with brown pants and a colorful tank in either teal or turquoise. Oh, and I just thought of my brown maxi dress! So cute paired with the dress and sandals. I love the possibilities. Plus, this will definitely transition into fall. 

This top is darling and unfortunately, wasn’t in my size. I did find a substitute but wouldn’t you know it, they now have it in my size! That just means there is one out there for you! I love the delicate lace, the dolman sleeves and the sweet neckline. The look is purely romantic and can be paired with so many things! Jeans being an obvious choice, but it would totally work with gray and/or black pants, those trendy red jeans seen all over fashion spreads these days, cute shorts and cropped khakis. The only jewelry I would wear is either fun earrings or stacked bangles. I would not pair a necklace only because the neckline is an in between length and the detail in the lace is all you need. 

There are so many other adorable pieces that should be considered and they are below. 

I would love to wear this in the Fiery Red Print.

Again animal print, especially snake, are huge right now and this dress totally fits the bill.

I love this simple, sequined tank. It’s a great layering piece under cardigans and jackets, say the Band Jacket listed above, but it would be super cute alone with jeans and heels. 

OMG! This shredded yet ruffled metallic top is too cute to pass up and I’m pretty sure it will be in my shopping cart by the end of this post! Super cute for work or play, it would dress down a suit, but play up jeans for an evening out. And, it’s only $14!!!

Again, take a new look at K-Mart and you will be as shocked as I was. The styles are on trend, the price points are amazing and you will look as chic and luxe as if you shopped at any high end retailer across town. 

All photos are courtesy of

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

MNG by Mango

I constantly hear, I would shop more but I just don’t have the money. Well, ladies, if you haven’t been to JCPenney lately, you deserve a trip! I haven’t been in years, but I am aware of how many designers have started lower end collections for the company. Nicole Miller and Liz Claiborne are just a few. But on this recent trip, I discovered MNG by Mango!

This spring line is adorable, completely on trend and I could have walked out with almost one of everything! I didn’t do that, however, most items were 20% off and it would have totally been worth my while. Below are just a few highlights and what I would wear with them.

This adorable, button front shirt dress is reminiscent of the 70s. Remember the Izod dresses of the late 70s/early 80s? Anyway, it comes with a self-belt but can be interchanged with either a black or brown belt. I would also pair it with Keds or my Sperry Topsider wedges I purchased last summer that are adorned with red and blue sailboats. Perfect for a day of boating, if I lived somewhere near water and owned a boat.

MNG by Mango® Button Front Dress

This tee is retro and somewhat French, in my opinion. I loved the silhouettes on the shirt and how the dresses are made out of white patent leather. Such simple touches make such a difference. I wouldn’t waste the navy on jeans, I have a hard time with blue on blue, so I would reach for my white linen pants. Silver jewels and my pseudo bronze, strappy sandals would be adorable for drinks or lunch on a patio come summer. I can feel the wind in my hair now. Oh, la la!

MNG by Mango® Girl Top w/Bow

I love camel and navy together! At first I thought this dress was just a top and had planned to pair it with my wide legged, navy pants. Now that I know it’s a dress, I’m pretty sure those brown, gladiator heels will complete the look. The flat gladiators will be cute as well. Because of the camel tone, brushed gold accessories will be perfect and I’m already imagining the hoops I’ve mentioned over the last several posts. They are quite the investment and I haven’t even worn them! I have some cute sailor inspired gold jewels as well and with the navy stripes, it will definitely be a play on nautical.

MNG by Mango® Stripe Dress w/Tie

This isn’t the color of the top I want, online it’s only available in Tobacco. I want the cream version and the self-scarf is shear cream with tiny grayish circles. I can already imagine it with my gray, cropped J.Crew pants, my long Isaac Mizrahi gray pants, black dress pants and dark skinny jeans. Strappy black heels, patent leather pumps, black or silver flats and fun sandals would all compliment this sweet top. And the jewelry options are unlimited. A definite must have!

MNG by Mango® Bow Sweater

And last but not least, this cute pleated skirt. It’s gray with a black and cream window pane check. But the black is so subtle that I’m thinking I could possibly pull off navy as well. I’m thinking of a satin, navy button down with ruched sleeves that would be perfect. When going with black, I have a darling silk twin set that I purchased at Harold’s many moons ago or a sleeveless t-neck top in a soft cotton blend. Accents of other colors would make the skirt pop as well. Red, yellow, orange and hot pink are just a few that come to mind and I have the red and hot pink taken care of!

MNG by Mango® Skirt

Don’t take my word for it. Take a trip to or stroll through the racks at the mall. It is a super cute line and I can’t wait to see what summer brings. I love discovering new lines!

All photos courtesy of JCPenney.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Layered Effect

Jacket: Banana Republic; T-Neck: Land’s End; Sweater: Ann Taylor Loft Maternity; Jeans: Liz Lange for Target; Tennis Shoes: Diesel via TJ Maxx; Necklace: Banana Republic

Yesterday I took some time off in the afternoon and spent a few hours on the Plaza with my mom. We lunched at The Capital Grille, I shopped for a friend’s birthday and myself and then hit Gymboree for the Peanut. It may have been a little chilly, but I felt that a walk and fresh air would do me good and possibly help get that baby moving in the right direction. Well, the walk and fresh air were nice!

I didn’t want to lug a big coat out for the day so I decided to layer my look. I originally started with just the t-neck and jacket but decided I needed something a little warmer. I reached for the wrap sweater and thought the whole look came together at the last minute. And there’s that awesome necklace again! I got more compliments on it yesterday which only validated the purchase! I did feel a little under dressed for our lunch, but then I noticed grown men in Chief’s gear and another young girl in a hooded sweatshirt and my concerns flew out the window. The best thing about yesterday, every one who asked when I was due was shocked to hear my response. Makes a girl feel good about herself with a little over a week to go!

Friday, March 25, 2011

GO International - Libertine

This is the third and final GO International designer Libertine. I love the ease of this cotton dress and can’t wait to wear it all summer! It will be like living in an oversized t-shirt! Who doesn’t want comfort like that? As you can see, I’ve already come up with three different ways to wear it.

For look number one, I went with the neutral belt and sandals I paired with the Tucker dress in my last post. Again, the thin belt will keep the dress drapey but will help add a little definition to my waist. This is definitely not a dress I want to cinch. I paired a brush silver hoop earring and I’m sure a couple of bangles will follow. An all silver jewelry look will be perfect!

I also love the ruffled short sleeve. It adds just a hint of girlie to this simple look.

For the second look, I instantly remembered the Tori Burch clogs I purchased from Rue La La last summer. How perfect is that green with this dress? I love how the inside of the shoe is the same blue with a fun design. I decided not to add a belt this go around as well to leave the dress full and free. I will add those brushed gold hooped earrings I mentioned in my last post as well. They will be perfect with the gold buckles on the clogs.

For my third and final look, I decided to add my gladiator sandals, a fun straw hat and a wooden bangle to compliment my shoes. Again, I left the dress free of a belt so that it could stay casual. After I put the look together, and had taken the picture, I remembered my darling straw cloche with a green, grosgrain ribbon and tiny gold buckle. Now, where did I put that hat?

I also think this dress would be darling with a pair of Keds or Chuck Taylors. I will definitely need to get a pair now!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Finally Made Up

Sweater: Ann Taylor; Tee: Target; Jeans: A Pea in the Pod; Flats: Jessica Simpson via Nordstrom; Necklace: Silpada

I’ve been working from home over the past two weeks in anticipation of Baby K. I’m just so much more comfortable here, but I do miss getting dressed up every day. Thursday’s are exciting for me because they’re our weekly doctor visit which means I get dressed and put on makeup. Don’t get me wrong, when I work from home I get dressed every morning, however, there is something about putting on makeup that makes this girl feel better about herself.

What a difference a week makes as well! Last week the high was in the mid 70s and I was struggling with what to wear to stay cool. This week, the temps are in the low 40s and I hated putting on a sweater. So, I tried to defy the weather and add a long sleeve tee to my short sleeved cotton sweater. I originally thought of adding black, but I was feeling too chipper to let such a dark look bring me down. Skinny jeans and my gray, felt flats rounded out the look. For a bit of sparkle, I decided I needed some shiny silver so I headed straight for this long linked necklace. 

Here is my weekly profile shot. We have reached week 38 and I’m seriously wondering how much bigger my stomach can actually get. Stay tuned for next week’s photo! I might not be standing up right at that point! Also, please ignore the horrible smile!!!! I had severe sun grins and it shows all over this photo!

GO International - Tucker

The second designer in my three part series is GO International’s Tucker. I love a shirt dress and this airy version is perfect for spring and summer, but will it transition nicely into fall. For my first look, and all the looks really, I chose to pair the dress with shades of brown. Here, I’ve added a light brown/spandex belt with my gladiator heel sandals. These shoes have gotten their milage over the years and it looks like their stint isn’t over. I also added a couple of wooden bangles and will add silver dangle earrings to complete the look. Because the bangles are the focal point, I want to keep the earrings small.

With the below look, I added a version of bronze. It’s not quiet silver and not quiet bronze but the over all effect is very neutral. The thicker belt, used in the look above, will really help cinch in my waist, but the thin belt will keep the dress drapey. And these strappy sandals dress up the dress without making it look too fancy. When thinking of accessories, I remembered these sweet, orange beaded bangles and thought they would bring out the orange in the dress. I also plan to pair a large pair of brush gold hoop earrings. Again, because the belt and shoes are so neutral, the accessories can be bold and in different shades. 


How do I plan to take this dress from summer to fall? Add colorful tights and boots! I will probably stay with the brown theme, but I’m also thinking my suede, dove over-the-knee boots I purchased earlier this year will look super cute and take the dress in a completely different direction. As for now, I will stick with spring and summer because I am so over this winter!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

GO International - Rodarte

As most of you already know, I have a lust for designer labels but don’t have the wallet to afford them! If I do make the splurge it’s usually on Gilt or Rue La La. Now, you and I can both afford lux labels with Target’s GO International line. In celebration of their five years of collaberating with major designers, they are bringing them all back for a limited time and I have purchased three pieces that I thought would be timeless. This will be a three part series of the items I’ve purchased and how I plan to pair them with accessories I already own. This is just a glimpse of a few ways to wear the pieces. Look for actual photos to come in the coming months!

First up is a Rodarte paisley dress. Lace is a huge trend and I love that the paisley takes on the look of lace without using the delicate fabric. For my first look, I paired the dress with black, patent leather. I’ve added a small patent belt, however, I have a wider version that will look adorable as well. I own several pairs of black, patent leather shoes, but these darling Enzo Angiolini fit the bill with their ruffle detail and tiny bow. They don’t take away from the print of the dress, but enhance the overall look with just that added detail.

I also love the delicate chiffon used around the neckline and sleeve of the dress. It keeps the whole thing super feminine. And because it’s so feminine, I haven’t quite decided on the jewelry I’ll wear. I definitely want something that compliments the black accessories used throughout the look, but it needs a little sparkle. Maybe diamonds or CZ will be the way to go. Stay tuned!

For my second look, I wanted to play up the nude portion of the fabric. I added my new cream leather/spandex belt and croc cream heels. I like the stark contrast to the black and for a chilly office climate, I have the perfect cream, silk shrug. With this look I’m thinking pearls to continue that cream theme. Black will be too dark for this look and I don’t like the idea of wearing something with bling.

The best thing about this dress is that it can be worn in so many ways and to so many ocassions. First and foremost, this will be a work dress, but it could be worn to a wedding, dinners out or a night at the theater. Check it out at now at Target.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Dinner with Friends

Last night we went out to dinner with friends and to me black is synonymous with “going out”. I’m not sure why, but to me it’s chic and always slimming! I love a simple black top and jeans for this look and that’s exactly what I went for last night. I purchased this top several months ago and again, haven’t worn it before now. What I love about the top is the soft cotton blend and structured sleeves. They aren’t too structured, but still fits into the trend.

The top needed a little bling so I reached for this heavy chain and CZ entwined necklace. I’ve worn it several times, but you can see it’s first appearance here. I love the hefty weight but delicate shimmer the CZ element adds. Just the right piece for a simple look like this one. I added my patent leather flats to not take away from the necklace. I thought of adding the satin rhinestone pair worn to the shower, but we had on and off rain all night and I didn’t want to ruin them. I still think they completed the look.

Joel thought we needed another profile pic so here it is! I swear, I think my stomach has grown since Thursday! Not sure it can get much bigger but who knows. Wait to see what takes shape next week.

Casual Yet Chic

Tunic/Dress: Laundry by Design via Saks Fifth Avenue; T-Shirt: Target; Jeans: Gap Maternity; Shoes: Jessica Simpson via Macy’s; Necklace: Banana Republic

Friday evening my sweet girlfriends threw me a baby shower and it was so lovely! When I asked one of the co-hosts what she was wearing, the shower was immediately after work, she stated probably jeans. In a joking tone, she said “it’s casual yet chic”! I was releaved! I knew I was working from home and didn’t want to get terribly dressed up after a day of sweats. However, I had such a hard time with the casual yet chic theme. If I weren’t pregnant, I would have broken out skinny jeans, a fun top and heels. But, my maternity tops aren’t fun, my feet are too swollen to get into a pair of heels so all I had was my skinny jeans.

I then remembered this sparkly tunic/dress that I purchased during a styling event at Saks Fifth Avenue in NY several years ago. I wasn’t sure if it would stretch over my bump, but it actually still had a loose fit and didn’t hug in that inappropriate Hollywood way. It was a tad chilly on Friday and I knew I would freeze with cap sleeves so I decided to add a very thin, black tee. Skinny jeans were the obvious choice, but I did toy with the idea of wearing black leggings. That’s always an option for later.  

Even thought the top had a hint of sparkle, I needed a little something at the neck. This darling Banana Republic necklace has never been worn and what better occassion to bust it out! Inspired by broaches, I’ve decided this is a DIY project that I’m going to tackle. As for my shoes, I wasn’t sure if these satin flats with rhinestones would compete with the necklace, but with them being on the back of the shoe and far away from the necklace, I think it was fine.

All in all, I really liked the look and felt chic the entire evening. I’m also finding new ways to wear older pieces either during my pregnancy or later. This tunic/dress has only been out on the town one other time and that’s a shame! I need to make sure I wear it more often in the future.

What do you think? Did I meet the mark for casual yet chic?


Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!

Top: Ann Taylor Loft; Pashmina: Jones New York via Macy’s; Jeans: A Pea in the Pod; Flats: Jessica Simpson via Macy’s; Earrings: Made by Me

What a difference a year makes! Last year we walked the annual Kansas City St. Patrick’s Day parade, something we do every year! This year we went to our 37 week check up. Last year we went bar hopping after the parade. This year we went to lunch at Schlotzsky’s. Tonight, same as last year, we are attending the annual O’Rourke St. Patrick’s Day dinner where I will drink O’Doul’s versus my beloved Bud Light. 

I struggled with what to wear today. Since I am three weeks away from my due date, there was no way I was going out to shop for something green. I tried on everything this morning and wound up with this. It’s balmy here today, upper 70s with clouds, so I knew I needed something other than my standard maternity sweaters. So, I reached for the white blouse I wore last week and added a celadon pashmina. I also added hints of green with my jewels and eyeshadow. That Wonder Woman palette was a great investment! Overall, I’m happy with the look, despite feeling like a great, white whale! 

As promised, here is the week 37 profile shot.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Orange You Glad

Jacket: Ann Taylor Loft; T-neck: Target; Jeans: Joe’s Jeans; Shoes: Vintage Nine West via DSW; Bead/Silver Chain Necklace: Made by Me; Silver Chain Necklace and Earrings: Silpada

Saturday was absolutely gorgeous! The early morning and afternoon called for a jacket, in my opinion, and I thought it was the perfect time to introduce my new coral find to the world! The gray t-neck was a perfect weight for those earlier hours, but by late afternoon I hated that I had to shed the jacket. This little gem has endless possibilities as far as coloring blocking goes. Cream and beige will be great neutrals, but a classic white t-shirt will be the perfect complement with fun jewels to jazz up the look. I also think khakis will be darling.

And the shoe possibilities! Off hand I’m thinking of my cognac gladiators and a darling pair of Rachel Comey’s that are orange and navy blue with a wooden heel! For a dresser look, I could always sport my cream Tory Burch wedges. However, these darling sandals that I purchased at Target over the weekend will be super cute as well. 

This coral color is a huge spring trend and a large part of the color blocking you will see in most, if not all, the fashion magazines on the newsstands. Is this a color you will add to your wardrobe this year?

Friday, March 11, 2011

Puffs of Cotton

Happy Friday! I am so glad the weekend is here. And hopefully, based on temps they are reporting for today, spring is almost here as well. I am so ready! What I’m not ready for is the spring forward this weekend! I don’t know about you, but I hate losing my precious hour of sleep. I know, I know, I won’t be sleeping in the near future, but how am I supposed to rest if mother nature is taking that hour away? Who can I talk to about this?

Although I am working from home today, I decided to go ahead and shower, dress apply makeup and start the day fresh. I even made a Starbucks run before starting the work day! Later this evening I have a pedicure and possible dinner out, but since the Big 12 Tournament is currently taking place, I’m sure my husband will be glued to the TV. I may be spending my Friday night watching romantic comedies by myself.

I wanted to keep my look casual since I wasn’t really dressing for anyone or anything special today. The cardigan was the first thing I thought of, but what to wear underneath. I remembered this adorable t-shirt from last season and thought the puffs of cotton would look cute peeking out of the sweater. I wasn’t wrong, was I? What I really wanted to do was add red shoes to the look, but of the two red flats I own, my feet just weren’t interested! At this point, if the shoes isn’t a tennis shoe or a flat that is complete open at the vamp, I can’t get my foot in it. So, I opted for my new patent leather ones. 

Speaking of shoes, I decided if I can’t wear my heels on my feet, I’ll them around my neck! I got this adorable high heel necklace from Dogeared and their Sex and the City collection last year. I love this jewelry site. They are delicate pieces with the sweetest sayings. I have several pieces and find they make excellent gifts. I’ve only seen them carried at Nordstrom but I’m sure there are other retailers. Check out their website for the full line.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Oh the Possibilities!

Top: Ann Taylor Loft; Sweater: Ann Taylor Loft Maternity; Jeans: Joe’s Jeans; Boots: Franco Sarto; Earrings: Silpada

Don’t you love discovering something you forgot about in your closet? Well, that’s exactly what happened to me the other night. I bought this top mid pregnancy and then it turned cold. The shirt is a super thin cotton and I tried it under several sweaters early on but could never make it work. That is until I got this sweater online a month ago. I immediately put it together in my mind. I kept my fingers crossed this morning in hopes that my fashion imagination hadn’t led me astray. I don’t think it did.

Since the top isn’t maternity, it will transition nicely to spring and summer. I’m already thinking I can belt it to help tone down the bulk and I plan to pair it with skinny jeans and either flats or cute sandals. It will also be cute with shorts. Oh god, the thought of shorts right now makes me sweat! So not ready for that!! Moving on….I also have plenty of cute sweaters I can pair with it as well. Oh the possibilities!

Today marks 36 weeks so I’ve captured my weekly side view shot. Not too shabby if you ask me! We’re moving right along in preparation for the peanut. It won’t be long now!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

My Own Pampering

I’m not sure what it is about a manicure, but after I receive one I not only feel that my look is complete, but I am completely relaxed. Maybe it’s the hand and arm massage you receive from both the exfoliator and lotion application. Maybe it’s the celebrity gossip banter with my nail tech. What ever it is, I love going!

I can’t afford one every time I turn around, so I do a lot of at home “manicures”. I put that term in quotes only because I don’t go to the extent that an actual nail tech does. I simply cut my nails, file them down, push back my cuticles and start painting. Not nearly as glamorous or relaxing! Anyway, I decided that today was the day I was going to “do my nails”. I don’t have a fancy function to attend, but I just felt like my hands needed a little detail and not the swelling that is currently taking place!

When choosing my color, I decided to go dark. I love the dark nail look. To me it’s not Goth, its chic! I usually go with my Chanel black or OPI’s “You Don’t Know Jacques”, but today I decided on “Lincoln Park After Dark”. It is a deep plum that is almost black. Love it! With spring around the corner, I might try some of my brighter shades like “Peru-B-Ruby” or “I’m Not Really a Waitress”. I might even try one of the corals that are really trendy right now, but I have a feeling that with my skin tone, it will total wash me out. Maybe after I’ve spent some time in the sun. Now that sounds glamorous and relaxing!

What colors do you like when getting your manicure?

OPI - Lincoln Park After Dark Lacquer/Polish

Lincoln Park After Dark

OPI - 2008 Fall/Winter French Collection - You Don't Know Jacques! Nail Lacquer/Polish  

You Don’t Know Jacques!             

OPI - Peru-B-Ruby Nail Lacquer/Polish 


OPI - I'm Not Really a Waitress Nail Lacquer/Polish

I’m Not Really a Waitress

All OPI color photos courtesy of