Monday, February 28, 2011

Super(model) Mom: Meet Susan

Susan was my very first friend in Kansas City. I was working at a high-end baby store at the time, and she happened to come in with her 2 boys. We started chatting; come to find out we had both just moved to K.C. (her from Seattle, me from Chicago). In just the few minutes that we spoke, I could tell there was something special about her. I mustered up the nerve to give her one of my personal calling cards and sure enough, she called!!!! We met for drinks, and the rest is history...

Susan is one of the most beautiful women I know...inside and out. She has a heart of gold, an infectious laugh, and the most positive attitude. You can't help but be lifted up every time you are around her.

Susan is the mother to 2 handsome boys, Luke and Willie and her beautiful daughter Eve. Susan is a Super Mom because she essentially is a full-time, 1 woman band. Her husband travels frequently and is currently working on his M.B.A. I give her so much credit, she somehow keeps her household running perfectly and all while doing it herself. I know she is counting down the days until her hubby graduates in May...only a few short months!!!

And a Happy (Belated) Birthday to you Susan, I hope it was a fabulous one. Love you!

Here is what inspires Susan....
What is your uniform?
1) My uniform would definitely have to be a pair of Gap "long & lean" jeans, or more recently this past winter, a pair of AG super-skinny jeggings. I usually pair these with a loose fitting blouse or cow neck sweater. Having had 4 kids in 7 years, I'm working my way back to the slimmer me, excited to do the more fitted, sweaters, tops and tanks!

Who inspires your style?
2) Who doesn't love Audrey Hepburn and Sophia Loren? I'd like to think there's some of these ladies in me somewhere - but really, I feel my style is mostly influenced by the women in my life - the gals closest to me which I share conversation and spend time with. It just seems inevitable that these close relationships should play out in my fashion sense....

If you could raid the closet of one celeb, who would it be?
3) The celebrity closet I would most like to raid is Jennifer Aniston. I find her style to be ideal - I love her classic clean lines and the casual freshness she always exudes. Also, I can't go without mentioning J Lo. Her style touches on ultra feminine and very chic!

What are your favorite beauty items?
4) My latest beauty item would have to be mascara, Mac's "Haute & Naughty Lash" (who comes up with these names??). It adds just the right amount of drama I'm looking for.

I'm also sooooo fortunate to have access to the most elite make-up artists in Kansas City!!

I'm also in love with my Stella and Dot sterling silver diamond hoop earrings - they're the perfect stand-in, and can go with just about anything. I'm always in search of really good skin care.

 Right now, I'm loving my Glo·Therapeutics Oil Free SPF40 Sunscreen, it literally disappears in less than minute of application.

What are your favorite budget items?
5) Favorite budget items would have to be anything from Forever 21 or Target!

If you could splurge on one item this season, what would it be?

6) I can only DREAM it would be a birthday surprise from my hubby this year - a Chole' Ethel medium sachel!...LOL....Its timeless and oh sooo pretty. (ok, wake me up now!)

Top three places to shop for your kids?
7) Top 3 places to shop for my little monkeys would be Target, Gap, and Gymboree.

Top three places to shop for yourself?
8) Top 3 places to shop for myself would have to be Anthroplogie, Nordstrom, and WHBM (White House / Black Market)

What item would you like to pass down to your daughter?
9) Hmmm, what would I pass down to my daughter? - that's a good one! Well, I currently don't own any vintage jewelry, furs or super keepsakes. So, keeping it real, I would say...really great morals and a love for God!

What is your biggest fashion mistake?10) I dare not share a photo on this one, but my biggest fashion mistake was my big ole' Chaka Khan permed hairdo from the 80's! Watch out! It may come back?!!!!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Take me Chicago!!!

Kami, Jayme, Emily and myself in Miami

Me and Jill in Miami

Friends, I am off for the weekend! Heading back to Chicago for a little girls trip. All my closest friends now live in all corners of the U.S. and we try to see each other at least once a year. Last year it was Miami for Jill's wedding and this year it will be Chicago where my friends Jayme and Kami still live. We have a big weekend planned!

I get to see these 2 munchkins who I have not met yet!!! Both Beckett and Tyler are over a year already...

Tyler 1

Beckett 1 1/2

ahhhhh, my favorite store. Oh how I have missed you!!! Hoping to find some great affordable fashion.

Remember that Tory Burch credit I have, I still haven't spent it. I am dragging Emily with me to narrow down my options.

We will grab lunch in the Gold Coast...

maybe the Pierrot Gourmet in the Peninsula Hotel


sad we can't sit outside they have an amazing patio, but we will hopefully have lunch at Lux Bar (amazing bar food!)

and then Saturday night...

drinks at Violethour

and dinner at Sunda, Billy Dec's "new asian" restaurant

and after that, we will see where the night takes us! It will be a whirlwind I am sure, but I can't wait to get away...

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Little Accents

I just stumbled upon Furbish Studio via MadebyGirl's blog. She featured a home where they used this gorgeous python tray. This is exactly what I have been looking for to use in my bathroom.  The medium Tray is $55

When I clicked through, I ended up at Furbish Studio's site and found the most fabulous little trinkets and decorative items. Their prices were pretty amazing...

and they have jewelry too! This Elephant Bangle is $30

And if you are lucky enough to  live in North Carolina, you can visit their store in Raleigh.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Not just boring basics

My cousin emailed me the other day to tell me about all the cute kids stuff she just got at American Apparel. Not only have they expanded their kids line, but they have also branched out into carrying vintage (online) and their basics are not-so-basic anymore. After looking online, I think I need to go and check them out in person....

seriously, how cute is this stuff????

and THEN, I just saw on The Glamourai, this AMAZING oversize clutch. Something I have been coveting for years. And you won't believe it, it's only $45.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Super(model) Mom: Meet Christina

I was so thrilled when Christina, author of the blog Full House decided to participate in my Super(model) Mom feature. She is inspiring to me in so many ways!

 Saying Christina is a busy woman is a bit of an understatement. She is a mom to triplets AND twins, yes, it's true!!!! On top of that she writes her beautiful blog and finds time to decorate her home and tackle some big DIY projects. If you haven't seen her daughter's rooms, you should click HERE.

Here is a little bio in Christina's words...

You know the saying.."When it rains it pours"...Well that pretty much sums up the last 5 years of my life.

About a decade ago I was sitting at my desk working for Goldman Sachs in Menlo Park, CA and wondered if I would ever have kids. After trying to conceive for a solid five years we decided to go the adoption route and within a month we were picked to adopt a little boy...only to find out we were pregnant with twins at the same time. I remembered really struggling at making the decision as to whether the little baby was meant to come into our home. In the end we didn't feel like it was the route out family should take and so we excitedly started to prepare for our girls. I remember thinking after I had them, "I am so glad that this is only twins and not triplets". Little did I know what I had in store. I will never forget the day the ultrasound technician delivered the news of three babies being in my belly less than 2 years after the girls came. I would be lying if I said I had any bit of excitement. Needless to say it took me a month before I could share the news with others because it after all was a blessing but I needed a little time to make peace with what was about to transpire. Pretty much in a nutshell I went from having no kids to five kids in 2.5 years. It has been intense but also fun, blessed and a refining experience.

I started a blog as a nice little diversion to focus on the fun and happy things in life. I sort of joke that blogging has been my anti-depressant (I often have people ask me if I have to take any sort of substances:-) I've always had a passion for design and decor. My mother can vouch on that because after all she was there on my 3rd birthday when I was more excited about a dress rather than the toys I had been given. From there I moved into trying to redecorate my bedroom often (there may have been a 50's style Mickie Mouse room) and bringing sticks in from the back yard to try and help out all of my Mom's floral arrangements. I have always been good with color and think that it is all about the little details. Another outlet that I have a passion for is finding treasures. I get so much satisfaction from making something look pretty on a budget. I have been known to drag my boys around on my thrifting adventures.

I love, love, love being a Mom and think it is the best calling in life.

and here is a peek into what inspires Christina...

1) What is your "uniform"

I am the most random dresser. I go through spurts of wearing dresses and skirts. Lately my favorite go to outfit is black leggings with a white or grey shirt and my Frye boots.

2) How has becoming a mom changed how you dress?

Before becoming a Mom I worked for Goldman Sachs & I dressed up every single day so you could imagine that it changed a bit after the kids came. I do have to say that I try hard not to let all of my old cloths waste away in my closet so there are days that I probably over dress for being a Mom of 5 young children..Oh well.

3) what fashion item would you like to splurge on for 2011?
A nice pair of good fitting wide-legged jeans. I honestly only own a few pair and a couple of them are very outdated.

4) When it comes to Fashion vs. Home Decor, which are your more passionate about?
This is something that certainly changed after becoming a Mom and spending more time at hands down home decor.

5) What are your favorite budget items?
L'Oreal Voluminous mascara, Cetaphil Moisterizing Cream, and that next purchase I am going to make at TJ Maxx, Home Goods or Marshalls:-) ( I buy so many of my articles of clothing or home decor from these joints). Did I mention that I use Suave hairspray..because I do..I don't recommend that one though because my hairdresser told me I had bad hairspray flakes.

6) What are your top 3 favorite beauty items?
Good hair conditioner (Kerastase, Terax or Goldwell) , good moisterizer (Cosmedicine), and loving L'Oreal Secrets Professional Secret No. 1 Magic Perfecting Base.

7) Who inspires you the most?
A woman who celebrates being a woman and mother. One who is strong, kind, driven and loving. The woman who embodies this the most to me is my Grandma. She has since passed but continues to inspire me so much that even to this day when I am down or am looking for direction I think of her example. I want to be a better person because of her.

Would you have laughed if I would have said Octo-Mom..hahaha

8) What is your favorite item you have purchased for your kids?

My Vita Mix. I can not tell you how in love I am with this machine and it is not just for the kids but bought it with them in mind. It is an investment but whenever I need to make-up for my kids lack of nutrition in their diet I make a magic smoothie with greens and flax but cover it all up with a cherry juice concentrate and other fruits. Makes me so happy. Plus did I tell you it makes soup and even warms it up from the powerful motor.
Also I have never regretted any stroller purchase or zoo/museum pass. If I said it was a pillow pet then I would be lying..We got three purple unicorns for Christmas and I want to huck a couple of them out the window.

9) If you could raid one celebrity closet, who would it be?
I am not up on fashion but I do know that I have always love Gwyneth Paltrow's style. There are quite a few fashion bloggers that I would like to raid their closets though.

10) What item in your closet makes you the most happy?
My collection of vintage dresses...oh and a vintage 70's Gucci leather coat with tiger head hardware.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Rocking that wide leg

Emily from Cucpakes and Cashmere looks absolutely adorable in her wide leg jeans, don't you think? Lusting after that sequin stripe sweater. Sequins + Stripes...does it get any better than that?

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Are you ready for the Maxi?

After perusing many of my favorite fashion blogs, there is no doubt in my mind that Maxi Skirts are back. It might take them a while to trickle down from NYFW to my suburb, but I kind of want one!

 I saved my maxi skirts that are more full at the bottom from a few years ago, but now I want a skinnier knit version. I picture it with a simple racer back tank and maybe a fitted blazer, or just some great accessories. I think they are very versatile and would be so great to run around in this summer. had some great inspiration...

This version by Splendid can be worn as a skirt or a dress! It's a 2-fer!

and if you want style on a budget, F21 is always a sure bet...

what do you think? Do you love or hate the maxi?

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Feeling crafty...

I keep seeing these bracelets all over the place, and I couldn't help but think this owuld be so easy to do. I just need a refresher on how to braid a friendship bracelet! Thankfully I happened upon this amazing DIY tutorial. So, what do you think? Will you be giving this one a whirl?

Brown Sugar Scrub: The Recipe

I had some requests for the brown sugar scrub that I had shown on the Blush and Bashful baby shower. Donna (the party planner) was kind enough to share the recipe! This recipe makes about 8 4oz jars. It's SO easy and makes a really great party favor. So, here you go....

Brown sugar scrub

2c brown sugar

1c granulated sugar

1c safflower oil

1T vanilla extract
Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and then transfer to jars. Makes about 32 oz.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

They're Baaaaaaack!

I hope you didn't give your wide leg jeans to the Salvation Army, because you better believe they are back and in full effect. I am kind of excited! Although I love my skinnies, I am ready for a new look and some new inspiration.

 I had a request from a Scout reader for some tops to pair back to all these 70's inspired bottoms we are seeing this season. So, here are my pics to pair back to your high waisted, dare I say bell bottoms???

jeans pictured $79.50 by The Gap

I love the idea of pairing these jeans with something very feminine and soft. I had visions of a beautiful patterned blouse, but couldn't find just the right thing online. So, as another option, something in the must-have neutral shades for spring. Blush, Ivory, Tan, and then pair it with some colorful statement jewelry...

Paisley Embroidered Top Forever 21 $19.80

I also LOVE stripes with a wide leg bottom. There is something so nautical and chic about this look...

and the perfect shoe to pair back to all of this? The must-have wedge heel that we are seeing EVERYWHERE this season...

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Blush and Bashful

My friend Susan and her friend Donna ( a party planner from Virginia) threw the GIRLIEST pink baby shower, and I was lucky enough to be able to photograph the event! In Donna's words, here is how the party came together...

I recently had the pleasure of designing a baby shower for my best friend's niece Lauren. When my best friend Susan Hart approached me about designing this shower, she had a clear vision of what she wanted. Her request, simple, LOTS of pink and whimsy.
In order to make this vision a reality, the party literally started at the front door.

To greet guests…yards of tulle, a feather boa wrapped 'I' and a tray of sparkling pink champagne with paper butterflies perched upon each glass.

My inspiration for this shower came from recently learning how to make tu-tus. I was looking for a cute homemade gift I could give to some of my friends kids and discovered a great tu-tu tutorial on Mommy blessings blog. From there, I wanted to make tu-tus for everything… hence the giant tu-tu on the sweets table.

The idea of the onesie garland makes for great shower décor as well as a perfect shower gift. All I did was design a graphic that matches the décor of the shower. Printed it out onto iron-on transfer paper (don't forget to flip the design before you print). Cut out the design and iron onto each onsie.

there was 1 for each month of the baby's first year...PRECIOUS!

One of my favorite activities of the shower was the photo booth. Each guest was instructed to get gussied up in tiaras, necklaces, cocktail rings and boas and have their picture taken with Lauren, the mommy-to-be. I think the photo booth really helped the guests to let loose, as did the mom-to-be.

Your's truly took the photos...I had a BLAST!  It was such a fun activity at a party, it seems as though you are never too old to get dressed up and get silly

Another beautiful touch was the wishing tree, made of branches from Susan's yard and some spraypaint and added sparkle and paper butterflies. Guests wrote a wish for Lauren and Baby Isabella on a card and tied it to the tree

Don't say baby was a game in which each guest was pinned with one of Donna's homemade silk flowers. If you heard someone say baby you could take their flower. Whoever had the most at the end of the shower won a prize!

The guests left with homemade brown sugar scrub in jars that Donna made, topped with mini party poms!

The party planners...

Susan and Donna's attention to detail made this a gorgeous, fun and special day for Lauren and baby Isabella!


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