Friday, January 24, 2014

My Fav Totes for Spring + Life in Pictures

I have a confession.... I've never owned a backpack in college. OK I might have had one my first couple weeks of freshman year, but that doesn't count because I didn't know what the heck I was doing my first week year of college. There's something about backpacks that are just....predictable. Instead of carrying a backpack, I have always carried large tote bags and purses to class!! I love that I can keep everything I need for class (laptop, small books, planner, pens, chapstick, etc.) in my bag just like I would in a backpack, but I still get to compliment my look with a cute bag! If you're someone who takes classes that require carrying large 1000 page text books around, then this post may not be for you, however these can be great purses to add to your shopping list/wish list! 

Things You NEED In a Tote: 

  • A Thick Strap: You don't want to be carrying everything around just for one of the straps to break. Make sure the purse of your choice has strong, thick straps that will last awhile. BONUS if you can find a purse that has a shoulder strap to wear it as a cross body! (See Tory Burch/Target bags)
  • Separators and Large Pockets: Built-in pockets are a lifesaver for keeping things you need for class separate from your normal purse belongings (wallet, phone, keys, etc.)
  • Zippers: You'll especially want a purse that has a zipper across the top to keep everything in place. Plus they add extra security if you're worried about being pick pocketed. 
  • Phone Holder: You'll never lose your phone in your purse again :)

I hope to get my hands on one of these cute bags - the colors are perfect for spring and summer!! 

A couple photos from my Instagram.. have you followed me on Facebook and Insta yet?? 

Thank you for stopping by! Have a great weekend, xo!

Monday, January 20, 2014

A Red Moment...

Coat: J. Crew Factory (similar) | Red Top: Piko via Spotlight Boutique | Leggings: Ann Taylor Loft | Boot Socks: Grace and Lace via Spotlight Boutique | Boots: fab 'rik (similar) | Purse: Target (sold out) | Tassel Necklace: Francesca's (similar) | Bracelets: Francesca's, Forever 21| Watch: Francesca's, loving this | Sunnies: Francesca's (similar) | Lips: MAC Viva Glam 1

Good morning! I have to tell you about this awesome store I stumbled across! While traveling across the state of Iowa last week, I noticed a couple stores on Instagram that recently followed me. I was driving through Cedar Falls and noticed one of the stores was close by, so of course I stopped in (I can't resist!!). Spotlight Boutique is where it's at ladies!!! I fell in love with this red top from Piko, and it's super comfortable and easy to wear when running errands/going to class/etc. Plus I found some awesome boot socks! I've been told that they look like Free People's (but half the price!!!). If you're in the Cedar Falls area, I highly suggest stopping in. I'm glad I did!

I've decided I love wearing red. For the longest time I'd always been a little hesitant to wear anything in red, but now I feel a little daring in it. This billowy top goes well with red because you'll feel like you're making an entrance but the relaxed fit won't make you feel like you're screaming "LOOK AT ME". There are many shades of red that look great with different skin tones, so you're sure to find a shade that fits you best!

Happy Monday! Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Glam Travel

Vest: Forever 21, similar here | Shirt: Forever 21, similar here | Pants: Calvin Klein (purchased at Costco!) | Boots: White Mountain (purchased at TJMaxx) | Purse: Philip Lim for Target, sold out | Necklace: J.Crew | Watch: francesca's Collections, lusting for this one | Sunnies: Ray-Ban | Lipstick: MAC Viva Glam I

Traveling in a car for hours can be a little boring at times, but that doesn't mean your outfit has to be! I like to be comfortable when in the car for awhile, so I tend to wear basics that can easily be layered with other great pieces. My faux-fur vest from Forever 21 helped keep me warm, while my cotton t-shirt kept me comfortable. Black cotton pants and flat boots also kept my look comfortable/casual but dressy enough to transition from work to the car. 

UI students are still on winter break until next week, and Iowa City is quite the ghost town. I think I might be ready for school to start again....I miss my friends! Thank goodness most of my roommates are back though! Thanks for reading! 

Click below to see similar pieces of what I'm wearing in today's post!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Better (Black) Basics

All black doesn't have to be dreary! Try finding basic pieces that have a slight....edge to them. These faux-leather leggings from Mint LA Boutique are easy to pair with casual and dressy pieces! I actually wore these leggings on NYE with a silk blouse and it totally dressed up my look (outfit to come on the blog). Adding dressy pieces like pointed flats, faux-leather leggings or even bright lipstick to an outfit can make a simple look turn unique and chic!

How was everyone's weekend? I visited my boyfriend Joe and his family in the Iowa Falls area. I had a quick dose of reality when driving over here; I encountered an ice storm on my way! Cars on the highway were going only 35mph and eventually my car started sliding around. Long story short, I had to park my car at a friend's house while Joe drove over in his truck to come get me! Learned my lesson on that one...

Joe and I are going to the ISU vs. KU basketball game in Ames tonight.. who's going?? Hoping for a big W against the Jayhawks! 

Thanks for reading! See you Wednesday.

Vest: The North Face
T-Shirt: J.Crew
Faux Leather Leggings: Mint LA Boutique, not online, purchased at W. Des Moines location
Flats: Ann Taylor, not online, similar here 
Earrings: Vince Camuto, not online, similar here 
Lips: Stila "Fiore"

Friday, January 10, 2014

Jeweled Navy

Happy Friday! Today's weather definitely calls for some layering, as it is freezing outside as well as drizzling/sleeting in our area. These turtlenecks from J.Crew are becoming another favorite of mine. They go so well with vests, blazers, or just alone. Plus they're the "tissue cotton", so they're lightweight and will transition nicely into the spring months. I have my eye on a coral one from J.Crew Factory (linked below). Vests go well with turtlenecks because you can easily take them off when you're inside without losing some of the cuteness factor :) I could go on and on about how much I love these turtlenecks but I don't want to bore you so JUST GO BUY ONE!

I'm also finding a lot of great online deals recently that I have to share with all of you. J.Crew Factory is having an additional 40% off all of their clearance items. They have a lot of spring/summer shorts for cheap available - a great opportunity to stock up before Spring Break. Nordstom also put a ton of their winter items on sale at up to 50% off! And who could forget the VS Semi-Annual Sale?? Lord knows I didn't... Happy shopping! Thanks for reading!

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Vest: Gap, old, similar here in black  
Turtleneck: J.Crew (Factory has them on sale for $7!! GO NOW!)
Jeans: Hudson
Boots: Ecco
Necklace: J.Crew Factory 
Bracelets: Forever 21

Wednesday, January 8, 2014


Ok so let me tell you a funny story about this beautiful blue coat of mine. This fall I went shopping with a friend at J. Crew Factory and fell head-over-heels in love with this coat. I needed a new pea coat that was longer (I only had a short one), it was a stand-out color that I loved, AND it was on major clearance. Impossible to pass up, right??? I texted my mom and sister, Emily, a picture of the coat asking what they thought, but unfortunately my phone died soon after, so I didn't see their responses in time. I ended up buying the coat that day and taking it home. As soon as I plugged in my phone, I found almost 50 text messages waiting from my sister.....turns out, she too had bought THE SAME COAT in the same beautiful blue color earlier that morning! I ended up calling her right away and we both started hysterically laughing.... we've both grown up but we still wear matching outfits! 

Anyways, I'm starting to embrace neons and bright colors! I have always struggled with wearing colors, however my blue coat and lime green sweater pair quite nicely together, and I'm not having that hard of a time finding more things for my coat and sweater to go with either. Also, my mom got both my sister and I these fun houndstooth infinity scarves for Christmas (see....still matching all the time!), and it's soooo warm and HUGE! Nothing like a warm and soft scarf on a very chilly day!

Have you checked out my Facebook page yet?? Click here to "Like" my page!

Thanks for reading! See you Friday...

Coat: J.Crew Factory, no longer available, similar here 
Sweater: J.Crew
Scarf: Dornink
Jeans: BCBGeneration, similar here 
Purse: Aldo, similar here  
Lipstick: MAC Devine Choice 

Monday, January 6, 2014

Flushed in Blush

I've missed you all! After a very long break from blogging, I'm finally back to some fun outfit posts! One of my New Year's resolutions is to be more consistent with blogging, so I will be sharing a lot more of my life with all of you, and I'm excited to hear more from you all as well. Back to my outfit...

I am definitely becoming more comfortable with wearing colors other than white and black (I know those aren't really colors..). After purchasing this sweater at Forever 21, I am now becoming obsessed with cable knit sweaters. They're comfortable and easy to pair with collared shirts, belts, and lots of sparkly necklaces! 

Thanks so much for reading. Have a great day!

Sweater: Forever 21, similar here 
Jeans: BCBGeneration, similar here 
Shoes: J.Crew Factory ON SALE!!
Clutch: J.Crew, similar here  
Necklace: J.Crew Factory, similar here 
Bracelets: Forever 21
Ring: vintage (gifted)