Tag Archives: style

She Says: Out With the Old, In With the New

Ever heard the expression “Living in the monkey house”? When you walk into the monkey exhibit at the zoo you think, OMG! It smells horrible in here! But if you stay in the monkey house for long enough, you don’t really smell it anymore, right? Everyone else who enters the monkey house has to plug their nose, but those who have gotten used to the smell don’t seem to notice it at all anymore. How does this relate to beauty? Getting used to your look, your style, and your makeup techniques can all be detrimental to your outward image!

You know that girl that always has the orange base line around her jaw? Do you think she realizes that she looks like an oompa loompa? Of course not. She thinks she is hot stuff with her “tan” face! Other people that she meets recognize that she could use a lighter color foundation and maybe a lesson in blending, but again, she has been living in the monkey house with this orange face for far too long and can no longer recognize how ridiculous she looks.

What about the lady with the poufy bangs? She loved how they looked in the early 90’s so she decided to keep them. Now she has become accustomed to how they look on her, and she thinks she would look weird without them. She and her bangs are happily shacked up in the monkey house.

And then there’s the woman who has had a couple of kids and has let herself go a bit. She started off by omitting blush and eyeliner to shave some time off of her morning routine. Nowadays the morning routine has been whittled down to the use of a hair brush and maybe some powder and Chapstick. She slowly cut out one beauty product after the next until she had completely crossed over to the homely side without even knowing it. She certainly doesn’t think she looks her very best, but has an “it’ll do” attitude about her appearance. This situation is a slow fade, but in the end, she and her housewife appearance have definitely taken up residence in the monkey house.

What these hypothetical women need to realize is that sometimes you need to look somewhere other than the mirror to see how you really look. Check out what’s current by grabbing the newest People, turning on E!, or just noticing what other women are doing. This is not to conform, but simply to stay relevant to what is happening today.

Think about who stands out as beautiful in your eyes. Whose style would you like to emulate? Who has the look and the class that makes you say, “She always looks great!”? I say Jennifer Aniston is a great example. Well, do you see Jennifer Aniston wearing 3 inch acrylic nails? Nope. Maybe it’s time to lose those. Is she wearing Crocs? Well, maybe those aren’t the most fashionable style of shoe on the market. Is her lip liner 4 shades darker than her lipstick? No? Perhaps that’s because that look does not work for anyone! It’s a harsh fact of life, but if it doesn’t look good on anyone else, it probably doesn’t look good on you either.

A good rule of thumb is to never go longer than 3 years without reevaluating your look and making some updates. Whether it be changing where you shop, your hair style, or your makeup shades, if you want to look your best, change is necessary!

Pardon the cheese factor in this quote, but “If nothing ever changed, there’d be no butterflies.” – Mary Kay Ash

Image Credit:   © Lester Cohen/WireImage.com



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Personality 101: Developing Your Sense of Style

be yourself

can’t count the number of times people have said things to me like, “you have such a unique style” or “I wish I could pull off what you do” or, my favorite, “How can you afford to wear something different all the time?” It’s as if I’m some kind of strange fashion anomaly that people can’t quite put their finger on. Most days, I choose to take their comments as a compliment but then there are the moments when those words cause me to second guess myself.

The fact is I’m a fairly shy person. I work hard every day to maintain a strong sense of who I am and who I want to be. Courage and fearlessness aren’t qualities I was born with; they’re things I have to cultivate and protect in my life. And hurt feelings are something I refuse to have. So when people say things that could be off-putting, I choose to toss them up on a high shelf and move along. Or, even better, find good in their words and use them to strengthen who I am.

There is one thing that gets to me, however. It may sound a bit silly, but I wish people could truly understand the value in developing their own sense of style. It bothers me that we have become a society which in one way or other demands people conform to what is “normal”. For some, that means always having to wear designer labels and surround themselves with elite circles of friends. For others, it is the exact opposite. They adopt an almost “holier than thou” mentality and wouldn’t step foot into a 5th Avenue shop if only to visit the ladies room. In my opinion, both extremes stem from fear and insecurity. And in both cases there is a sense of self-discovery that is lost.

Personal style is exactly that. Personal. That means not everyone has to love what you wear or how you wear it. But you do. And if you feel the most you when you’re wearing 3 inch heels then I say go for it. That’s you. But if you’re only wearing those heels because that’s what you think people expect from you, then it may be time to re-evaluate.

I wear what I wear because I truly love and appreciate those things. They’re the things that look best on me and that I can most be myself in. They are the things that allow me to forget about being self-conscious and worry about being others-focused. They don’t cost much – I enjoy being thrifty – but they do mean something to me. They’re a means of showing other women that they can enjoy being who they are. They don’t have to worry about “pulling off a look” – they can simply be themselves.

Today’s Mission:

Honestly evaluate your personal style. Are you being true on the outside to who you really are or want to be? What are the things you most appreciate about your look/style? What are the things you admire most about the style of others? Have you told them?



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Recessionista: Bail Out Your Closet

Although I don’t like to mix politics with fashion too often, I’m always looking for new ways to stretch my wardrobe. It’s no secret that America is in a heap of financial trouble these days. And chances are it will cause us to rethink our spending even if it doesn’t affect our actual pocketbook. While I’m a firm believer that anyone can be successful whatever the economy, I love finding frugal ways to look fab.


I swear, people think I’m a shop-a-holic. I get asked all the time how I never look like I wear the same thing twice. To be honest, I do LOVE shopping, but I set pretty realistic limits on myself.  I believe just a little creativity can make it look like you’ve maxed out your gold card without ever stepping foot into the mall. Here are just a few of the ideas I use to keep things looking fresh.



T-shirt and jeans kind of girl? If you’re like me and own exactly 6 t-shirts, you can feel pretty mundane very quickly. Here’s a thought: Put on what you would normally wear (a.k.a. vintage tee and skinny jeans). Now grab the first scarf you see. It really doesn’t even have to match. I love finding old silk scarves at thrift stores and pairing them with my most casual things…Instant Upgrade!


Awesome Tee!

Awesome Tee!

cool vintage vest!

cool vintage vest!
















Another idea is to grab a vest or cardigan (I like those long grandpa types) and toss that over a plain white t-shirt.  To make it even better, put a belt over the top of all that!



You Don’t Have to Match.

This is my number one fashion rule. When I realized this, my world was opened up to a plethora of new possibilities.


Some of my best outfits happen on accident. I put something on and it just doesn’t look right. I’ll usually do one of two things. First, I’ll stare into the mirror and whatever color pops into my head, I’ll go and find an accessory in that color (shoes, necklace, scarf, whatever). Sometimes, that’s where the magic happens.

If that doesn’t work, I’ll see if there is a pattern or texture that might make the outfit “pop”. I like to pair unusual patterns and prints…like leather and florals or plaids and paisleys. The key to adding textures to a look is really just to not bulk it up. You are wanting to add interest, not pounds to your style!


pretty lightweight scarf!

pretty lightweight scarf!


There are a thousand more ideas I could give you, but try these out for now. I’d love to hear other thoughts you might have. What’s your trick to spicing up your wardrobe?



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007 Style

I must be some kind of backwoods girl. Just last week I saw my very first Bond film. Aside from the cars (my dream is to own an Aston Martin) and ridiculously stylish clothes, I have to say I wan’t too impressed. Of course, that was one film of many so I guess I’ll have to give James another chance!

I did get inspired my the oh-so-suave way Mr. Bond handles a gun, which made me think of another guru of style, Mr. Karl Lagerfield (a.k.a. Chanel icon and snazzy dresser extraoridinaire). Here’s a peek at my sleekest efforts at style!

love that spy style!

love that spy style!


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Etsy Couture

Etsy Couture

The thing I love about etsy is that any guy or girl can have a chance at entrepreneurism. You can go from knitting dog collars in the back bedroom to opening your very own boutique in a matter of minutes. Etsy has given a start to so many artists, crafters and designers. Hat’s off!


Browsing through today I see that there are so many aspiring fashion designers getting their start on etsy these days! Today, I thought I’d choose a few who I find simply amazing! Watch out for these up and comers, Donatella!

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Plaid Hatter

My fingers are just about numb from all the creating going on in my race to the Girlie Show. This week, the task has been to design and create pillbox hats. The goal was 10 and I’m well on my way! Sometimes these little guys seem intimidating when I first begin, but once I get into it the ideas just start flowing! I love to create something unique like the pillbox hats. So many people think they can’t wear them (especially in the Midwest where I live), but I say “Girl, rock that hat”! I love being a native Texan but there are so many days that I think my fashion eye was transplanted from London!


I decided to channel the fashion greats (think Oscar and Ralph) to pay homage to some of the most fabulous designs for fall! So here’s a little sample of one of that series of hat designs. I think it most resembles something from the fashion house of D&G. What do you think?


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How to Rock a Scarf

We’ve had our first few days of chilly weather which has me thinking about one of my favorite accessories, the scarf. Confession: I’m strangely addicted to those crazy bits of neck fabric. Knitted, woven, silk or cotton, I get a peculiar sense of accomplishment every time I wrap one around my neck. Like I’ve just managed to make myself that much cooler.


There is only one quandary I have about donning a scarf. And it appears to be a pressing question among my cohorts as well. It seems to us that there is a bit of an art to conquering the 40 billion ways to wear this fine accessory. A bit daunting even for the most imaginative of us all. And that brings me to you.


Fashion gurus unite. I’m looking for the most fashionable, absurdly clever and original ways you’ve discovered to wear (or do you tie) a scarf. Send me pics, post comments…do what you gotta do.


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