Friday, December 20, 2013

Last Day for Orla's 12 Days of Christmas

Today's the last day for the 30% off surprise items. Although the sunglasses I wanted never made it to the sale, there's still lots of goodies to be had. Check them out soon at

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Review: J. Crew Factory Intarsia Bike Sweater, Charley Sweater, Madewell Sweater, Gold-Button Waffle Henley, Downtown Field Jacket, Printed Bow-Neck Top, Jewel Collar Top, Skinny Ankle Jean, and Long Pencil Skirt

I went to the J. Crew outlet recently when they had their additional 50% off sale AND an additional 20% off of that. Up ahead is a large set of reviews. I've put the original prices as J. Crew often varies their promotions, but currently all items are 50% off with free shipping on $50+ orders.

Size XXS
Bike prints have been a popular trend for the past couple seasons. With just the one bike print on this sweater, it's cute without being overwhelming. The size XXS felt really good on so I'd say this runs true to size. It's a nice lightweight sweater and the grey makes it easy to match. I already have a couple clothing items with a bike print, however, so I decided to pass on this sweater.

Size XXS
I reviewed this sweater recently in an XS, but found an XXS and it was on clearance for about $20. So while I originally passed on this sweater because I already had another black and white sweater, I just couldn't pass this one up at its current sale price. The bows are super cute and it fits just like the Intarsia Bike Sweater above.

Madewell Sweater
Size XS
I was surprised to find a Madewell sweater at the J. Crew Outlet. Surprised and excited, as there's no Madewell store near me. I liked the color of this sweater as well as the elbow patches. It also felt soft and not itchy. What I didn't like was the trapeze fit. Folded, it looked like a fitted sweater. But when I tried it on, I found that it had a more A-line shape and it ballooned out, so this sweater was a pass for me. 

Parisian Blue, size XXS
I think this shirt is a good basic. I like the gold buttons and the waffle texture. It's soft and stretchy, but a bit too clingy. I felt it looked unflattering on me in the front shot. I have a couple of the striped versions which helps conceal bulges, so I'll stick with those and pass on the solid colors.

Deep Navy, size XXS
I don't see this jacket on the J. Crew Factory site, but I do see it on the regular J. Crew site. I'm sure it's not the exact same jacket, but it's pretty darn close. I reviewed this jacket in Mossy Brown in a previous post, and I initially liked that color better. I felt it was more my style and could match more things in my closet. They no longer had that color in a size XXS, so I opted for the deep navy instead. I'm happy with this purchase as I find that I can actually pair it with many things in my closet. Plus, I actually already have a couple army green jackets anyway, so this deep navy is a good break from all my neutrals. I like the gold hardware and all the pocket details. It's fitted yet comfortable, and I can still layer underneath. I prefer the collar to be popped up, but it also looks good folded down. The only thing I don't like are the waist tabs. I put them on the second button to give it a more fitted look, but if I so much as even slightly cross my arms, they pop open. So I have to leave them on the first button instead. Not a big deal, but I just wish the tabs would stay closed. Overall, a great casual jacket that I've already worn a few times. Plus, Claire Dunphy was wearing this on an episode of Modern Family I saw recently and I was sold.

Warm Ivory, size 00
Again, I reviewed this blouse in another post, but in a size 0. At the time, they didn't have a size 00, but when I returned a couple weeks later they had one 00 in stock. I tried it on, and although I didn't see a significant difference, I felt better in the smaller size (maybe it's only a psychological thing, I dunno). Anyway, I decided to exchange my 0 for the 00 and I'm really happy with this purchase. I think it will make a great holiday party top.

Jewel Collar Top?
Size 00
I couldn't find this blouse on the website so I'm not sure what the name or the price is. I like how these jewel collar tops look on the hanger, but on me they just don't translate well. Maybe because I'm not used to wearing a mandarin collar. I usually like to leave all my button-ups open at the top, but that wouldn't work for this blouse - you have to close it all the way to appreciate the collar. Although the jewels are pretty, it's a pass for me.

Classic Rinse, size 24
I've been searching for some new skinny jeans to replace several pairs I was wearing while trying to lose the baby weight. These looked good folded on the table, but I thought they looked terrible on. First of all, the material felt a bit too stiff and rough. And even though it's an ankle fit, they were far too long and bunched at the bottom. I could easily get them hemmed, but overall I just didn't think they looked all that flattering. They had a nice mid-rise and overall fit (again, the fact that I'm wearing a size 24 is ridiculous. I'm usually a 26, maybe a 25, so this is vanity sizing at its finest). But they just didn't have the wow factor for me so it was a pass.

Black, size 00
I also need new skirts in addition to pants. I have a few J. Crew pencil skirts in size 2 that are too big for me now. I plan on getting them altered, but in the meantime I decided to try on some smaller sizes in colors I didn't have yet. Black seemed like a good classic option. The size 00 felt good on. It has the perfect knee-length that's great for work. It's a nice weight - not too light or heavy, and there's a bit of stretch. I was able to buy all my J. Crew pencil skirts for under $30 each, and these were still about $40, so I think I'm gonna wait for more of a sale.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Orla Kiely Spring/Summer Resort 2014

Orla Kiely just released her Spring/Summer Resort 2014 collection on her website. I admit I'm a bit surprised Orla chose such a trendy print for her newest collection when she's known for creating her own unique prints that have garnered her a mass following of fans that adore her purses and accessories. However, the heart print is still undeniably adorable and works well with her retro take on things. Here are the pieces I liked the best. 



Shell Pink
I am OBSESSED with this bag. The color is gorgeous and I like the option of wearing it as a top handle bag as well as a shoulder bag. You must see its sides to truly appreciate its beauty and understand the name of this purse...

I didn't even notice the sides until I was writing this post and saw that the name of the bag was "punched heart." And I thought, "Huh, I didn't see any hearts on the bag." So I clicked on the other views and saw the side design and fell in love even more. How cute is this punched heart design?! And the navy blue provides a quite unexpected yet pleasant contrast to the shell pink color.

Shell Pink

Orla's 12 Days of Christmas: Days 7 and 8

On sale $100.80 (originally $144)
Day 7 brings us this tote in the same sycamore print as the wallet from Day 4's surprise item. I do own one of the easy totes in the orange stripy stem print, but I like how the newer versions come with a top zipper.

On sale $145.60 (originally $208)
Next up, we have another wallet, but this time in all leather and in the sixties stem print. I like this one better as it is 100% leather and I also like the jacquard lining as opposed to the nylon lining in the Sycamore Print Wallet. It's going to be another pass for me (still holding out for some sunglasses!), but once again, both make lovely gifts.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Orla's 12 Days of Christmas: Day 6

Orla's 6th day of Christmas brings us this lovely plum purse.

On sale $236.60 (originally $338)
I love the rich purple hue of this purse and the adjustable straps. The gold hardware also provides a nice contrast. The only thing I wish it had was an inside lining (the inside is just the suede side of the leather). Other than that, it's a lovely purse and would make a great Christmas gift!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Orla's 12 Days of Christmas: Days 4 and 5

On sale $74.20 (originally $106)
Orla Kiely's Day 4 surprise item was this cute wallet. It's another miss for me as I already have this same style wallet, except in the blue stripy stem print that my husband bought me a few years ago.

Plus, lately I've really been into smaller trifold wallets since all I ever carry nowadays are my credit card, driver's license, and a few gift cards. No need for one of these bigger wallets. I just want something small that I can throw in my son's diaper bag, which is already full of stuff as is. It doesn't look like Orla Kiely is currently offering any smaller trifold wallets on the US site so I won't be looking for that as one of the surprise items (but I'm still holding out hope for some sunglasses!)

On sale $313.60 (originally $448)
Orla Kiely's Day 5 surprise is this dress. Looks like they'll be flip-flopping between a clothing item and an accessory item. Hopefully, they'll start including some home items as well!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Orla's 12 Days of Christmas: Day 3

On sale $250.60 (originally $358)
Upon seeing this cardigan, I wasn't that impressed with it. From afar, it looks like just a bunch of white circles. But upon closer inspection, you can see that they're actually stitched flowers.

I still don't like this jacket that much (looks a bit too grandma-ish in my opinion), but I suppose if styled correctly, this could look very vintage chic. For me it's another pass, but I'm still looking forward to the rest of the surprise items.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Orla's 12 Days of Christmas: Day 2

Today's Orla Kiely surprise item is the Stitched Square Flower Sheepskin Rosemary Bag. If you missed out on yesterday's items, don't worry - all surprise items will remain at 30% off until December 20th. 

On sale $334.60 (originally $478)
I'm honestly not that excited about today's item. Although it's a lovely red color, perfect for the holidays, I'm just not fond of the stitched flower detail on the front. I couldn't quite put my finger on it until I realized that it reminded me so much of BCBG's logo. 

Don't get me wrong - I LOVE BCBG (for the longest time, a majority of my wardrobe came from there). It's just that if I wanted a purse that looked like BCBG, then I would just get...a BCBG purse (and probably for a lot less!) This design just doesn't look like an Orla Kiely piece. It's still pretty - I just don't see her signature style in this purse. Let's see if tomorrow brings a better surprise!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Orla Kiely's 12 Days of Christmas: Day 1

Orla Kiely is doing something new and different this year by offering 30% off surprise items that are revealed daily, starting today through the 20th. What a fun treat this is! And a great way to get some last-minute shopping in before Christmas. It'll be exciting checking out her site everyday to see the latest surprise item. I'm personally hoping for the sunglasses to be one of the items, as these NEVER go on sale.

On sale $117.60 (originally $168)
This bag is so interesting. I like Orla Kiely's latest take on her signature stem print, and while many people probably won't like the olive green color, I really like it! This bag appears roomy enough to hold all of your essentials, and the adjustable removable strap makes it easy to wear different ways.
On sale $313.60 (originally $448)
This dress is appropriately named as it looks like something Kate Middleton would wear. This would make a lovely holiday party dress. The red belt is a nice pop of color against the rose gold. Such a fun sparkly festive little number!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Review: J. Crew Factory Printed Bow-Neck Top, Jewel-Collar Oxford Shell, Charley Sweater, and Skinny Cords

Warm Ivory, size 0
(I don't know what's going on with the color quality of the bottom photo, but rest assured it doesn't look like this in real life!)
I remember J. Crew selling this blouse last year, but in silk. This year's Factory version is made of polyester - kind of a bummer, but expected at this price point (I purchased it during their 50% off Black Friday promotion for $37.50. I also had a $25 J. Crew rewards card, brining my total down to a little over $10. Not bad). I actually purchased this blouse for a friend last year for her birthday and really liked it myself, so I'm happy to see J. Crew Factory bring this blouse back. Although I prefer silk, I don't mind the polyester because that'll make it much easier to wash. There's also a very cute bow detail along the front, which of course pairs well with the bow motif throughout. While checking out, the cashier said this blouse was so my style, and I looked at her quizzically thinking, "How does she know what my style is???" And then she gestured to my coat, which was the Herlev Sweater Coat, and then it made sense - my coat and this blouse are super girly. They only had a size 0 in store, which I think looks fine, but I would've like to see how a 00 would've looked. It's still available online, but I wanted to purchase it right away, so I opted for the size 0. The fitting room attendant said it fit me well, and I took her word for it. I do think the overall fit is fine, but I'm still curious if the 00 would've helped with the billowing effect you can see in the side shot. I understand that this blouse is supposed to be a little loose and hence sit away front the body a bit, but I always like my clothes to be as tailored as possible. 

Classic Blue, size 00
I love the idea of this blouse - a classic, crisp oxford shell with a fun and trendy jewel collar. I also love the little ruffles along the collar. However, it just didn't look right on me. Even in a size 00, I still want it to be more fitted. Maybe tucking it into a high-waisted pencil skirt would give it more of the tailored look I want, but for now, it's a pass.

Black White Bow, size XS
This sweater is very cute with the bow print, but I already have another black and white sweater and felt that I didn't need another one. Plus, I liked the striped version better...

Acorn Navy Dusk, size XXS (left), size XS (right)
I remember J. Crew selling this sweater last year and I wanted it so badly, but it was quite expensive and by the time it went on sale, they no longer had it in my size. Last year's version, if I remember correctly, had a few orange stripes throughout, which I really liked and unfortunately, this year's version lacks. But it's still a really cute sweater and I love the stripes as is. I tried on both an XXS and XS and the XXS looked and felt better on in my opinion. The XS looked fine, but again, I like my clothes as tailored as possible. I didn't end up purchasing this because the only XXS had a tiny snag in it and I didn't want to order online and have to wait. Plus, the fact that there was a snag gave me pause about how well this sweater will hold up, so I'm going to wait until it goes on sale some more. 

Dusty Blue, size 24
First of all, this has got to be the most extreme case of vanity sizing EVER! There's no way I'm a true size 24. A size 25 on a "skinny day" maybe, but really a 26. So I was shocked when I had to size all the way down to a 24 to get the look and fit I wanted. The 25s gaped at the waist, so these definitely run big in my opinion. AND there's some spandex so they will stretch a bit over time. I was looking for a pair of corduroys to replace a mint green pair I bought from J. Crew Factory over the summer (those were a size 27, and I've lost a bit of weight, so I needed a smaller pair, but sheesh! I didn't expect to go down three sizes!) These are not the minty green color I was looking for (in fact, they're listed as dusty blue, but these were close enough). The ONLY thing I don't like about these pants is that the leg opening is so skinny that it's hard to get them past the heel of my foot. So these are definitely not pants I'd wear to go shopping, where I'm bound to have to take these pants on and off to try on clothes. Other than that, they fit and feel great, and the dusty blue color has paired well with many things in my closet. I purchased these for half off and they were an additional 25% off, so I bought them for about $30.  

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Outfit Of The Day: Mad About Plaid

What I'm Wearing:
LC Lauren Conrad Lace Crop Top
LC Lauren Conrad Gift Bow Necklace
Banana Republic Bracelet
I absolutely love these plaid wide-legs, which are a far cry from the skinny pants everyone's always wearing, but I think they're making a comeback! I've been seeing a lot of wide-legs and even bell-bottoms in stores recently, so it's exciting to see a new (or actually, old) trend for the winter season. 

I found this wishbone ring at Nordstrom Rack. It was included in a set of three, which also came with a tiny star and a heart, for only $3! This ring was perfect to wear for Thanksgiving Day.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Penguin Sweaters, Scarves, and Accessories

With holiday shopping in full swing, I've decided to compile a list of penguin-themed clothing and accessories that make perfect Christmas gifts for any friends and family in your life that simply love penguins (or cute things). 

Animal graphics are super popular this season, so it was easy (and fun!) to find all these penguin sweaters and shirts (I found four at American Eagle alone!)


This is my favorite out of the bunch. I like how they tried to make this penguin look "tough." :)

Cream, $49.95

Medium Heather Grey, $49.95


About $40

On sale $23.99 (originally $48)

On sale $62.30 (originally $89)



On sale $89.95 (originally $330)


Currently on sale $11.99 (originally $24.99)
This scarf is just SO cute! Modcloth is currently running their Black Friday sale, where many items are temporarily marked down to 50% off, including this scarf!


I saw this bracelet at Dillards last night and it's ADORABLE! This bracelet is actually part of an entire collection of penguin-themed jewelry that includes a matching necklace, earrings, and charm.