i'm impressed

those of you who know me are probably aware that dark circles are one of my biggest beauty blights. it is probably too much daily reading or my penchant for red wine but either way they double exponentially during the holidays. and looking like i've had enough sleep gets harder and harder as the clock ticks down to new year's.

thus i love eye brightening pens, however they are not all created equal and let me tell you i have tried them all starting here:

Yves Saint Laurent
Touche Eclat

So this is the industry standard. It wins all the beauty awards and yet, it does NOT work for me. It is too light, gives me raccoon eyes, and still shows my dark circles. And quite frankly for that price it better work miracles. So this one is out.

Eye Brightening Pen
 So I equate this roughly with taking a white crayon and circling my eye with it. Maybe it is because of my olive skin but this was the least sophisticated of all my tries. However, if you are an ivory skinned diva this night be a great inner eyeliner and inner corner highlighter for those sleepy mornings.

Laura Mercier
Eye Brightening Pen

This has been by far my favorite for YEARS. It comes in two colors based on your skin tone, it is creamy, light, and I almost always get comments on how nice my skin looks when I have this on. Love it love it love it and when I get Sephora gift cards this is usually what I stuck up on. However, for that price I do have to use it sparingly and especially at this time of year it just seems too decadent a purchase for myself.

Thus I come to my new favorite: 

Garnier Nutritioniste
Anti-Dark Circle Eye Roller

So I decided to try this bc I couldn't justify spending the $30 on Laura Mercier (still love you, Laura!) and boy am I glad that I did. It has caffeine which perks up under the eyes, concealer which covers with a bit of color, and has lovely creamy shine. I did notice that by the end of the day it can work into fine lines a bit but if you use a primer that is usually not a problem. And for that price it is great for daily use without the guilt of wasting it on things that are not special occasions. Really great filler for my Mercier at a really great price.


Every kiss...

begins with...no i won't do it, i don't have the heart.

however, regardless of my love/hate relationship with the Kay commercials i do get sentimental about baubles given during the special occasions. i don't know why. it has something to do with having my own movie/memory montage of remembering through my pieces. it will go like this, "and these are the cameo earrings my husband gave me in Venice (true!) and this is the bracelet we found in an antique store in New Orleans (could be true one day), this is from the Christmas that... (you fill in your own blanks)." And here is some inspiration from the Effy Collection at Macy's:


Recently inspired by

Navy and white striped blazers
Toggle coats
Herringbone coats
Coats with belts, coats in unexpected colors
Tall tall boots in camel or taupe
Creamy brogues, still.
Modern jewelry
Vintage shoes
Wine colors
Plaid shirts
Mustard florals...always.


Help needed

I'm thinking of shimmying into that green and navy dress with some plum tights for a holiday party this season. But what color shoes, guys? I don't have any navy ones...black seems wrong...gray seems like too many colors. Maybe something to play on the plummy tights? I'm all about tights that match shoes. I like an uninterrupted line.

Must admit to being interested

That's how happy I felt when I got engaged. I love how beaming they are.
I never thought I cared about Prince William but honestly I think it is so nice that these two are getting married. I think Kate is so beautiful and has such a clean and elegant style--a style that's not actually "fashionable" at all, and that's why it's so nice. She doesn't do trendy. I can't wait to see her wedding dress. Yay for them!


Notorious & Notable

Transferred from mcny.com


Exhibit showing from 
Sep 14 through Jan 2

Co-presented with the National Jewelry Institute, Notorious and Notable: 20th Century Women of Style highlights 80 prominent New York women who used their style, talent, or wealth to capture the attention of society and the media. The exhibition features a runway of original attire—much of it created by the most important designers of their times—and an impressive selection of jewelry crafted from the dawn of the 20th century to its close.

The exhibition features such celebrated New York women as Mrs. Cornelius Vanderbilt Whitney, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Babe Paley, and Barbara Walters, as well as women from the arts world, including Isadora Duncan, Marian Anderson, Lena Horne, and Lauren Bacall. The exhibition offers an opportunity to encounter many of New York’s leading ladies past and present through their fashion and jewelry.

just doing my part

i am not a big black friday fan- maybe bc i have too many people to shop for the idea of starting my shopping the last week in november is just too much for me. i am sure i get this from my mom who also starts buying presents in the summer and stashing them away. bc of this tendency my christmas shopping is done, wrapped, shipped, and already under the bookshelf in the library (bc i am however a last minute decorator so i thus far have no tree!).

regardless though i thought that i should offer you all the savings that were sent to me after i ordered from these sites. enjoy and if you are a black friday shopper, please don't trample each other-remember your kindness above all else! love love and lots of sweet potatoes!

Who: Talbots
What: 25% off and free shipping
Code: 029913452

Who: Tinyprints
What: $20 off orders of $99+
Code: TP1210

Who: Banana Republic
What: 35% of on Thursdays

Who: JCrew
What: 20% off for cardmembers
Code: 099102175972

Who: Bath and Body Works
What: Free item up $13 with any $10 purchase
Code: F103460

Who: Boden
What: 25% off and free shipping
Code: CF91260C


why, you ask?

i never really understood cake stands. they always felt to me like something that only bakeries or diners had and even then you needed a grown-up to pick up the glass lid for you.  maybe this holdover from my childhood is why i didn't think that they applied to me until recently.

last year jhubbs and i made a cake for our friend who was visiting. it was a creamy, crazy two layer triple chocolate concoction that oozed sophistication and glamour. we were so proud. and then we were stuck, what were we to do with it? we literally had nowhere to put it. our options were a cracked dinner plate the whole cake wouldn't actually fit on or a football themed nacho tray my husband received as a gift. needless to say, we went with the nacho tray and as we sat there eating with our beautiful dark chocolate concoction in the middle of the LSU nacho tray i began to think that maybe it was time for a cake stand.

since then i have been looking for one that is classic, that will work for the square cakes that i also make, and that wouldn't cost me a fortune. finally, i found it at kohls.

 it was originally $50, on sale for $24.99 minus $20 of free kohls cash i got for shopping there before and free shipping because their website was down (amazing costumer service by the way, so nice). so what did i pay for it? the $4.99 and tax which came to $8.18.   E., this should do you proud!

and i was so ecstatic about the savings on the cake stand that i also bought this set of mini-cake, cupcake, or candy dishes. $24 at macy's and now our table will have grown up dimension and we won't have to put aluminum foil on our beautiful creations anymore. so utile, so pretty. now i just have to make my famous christmas crackers to fill them!

you know i love peacocks, right?

this is a true story:  i have been imagining a peacock dress for sometime now. in my mind whenever i became a movie star or we won the lottery i imagined i would have a peacock dress commissioned for myself. it would have a simple corset bodice and full skirt literally just covered in layers of peacock feathers. i look great in that fantasy by the way. regardless, last night, while trying to find peacock feathers to do my holiday decorating this year i came across my dress. if this were never never land i would believe that i actually dreamed it into being. actually, let's face it, i still basically think i did.



Sugarboo Designs

you know what makes me feel like a grown-up? looking at artwork. i love it. and yet i can never seem to commit to buying it because i always worry about what a piece "means about me", its form, how it should be viewed, what to do to honor it...which always makes me walk away from a sale.

however, i may have found a design that doesn't make me feel like an incompetent grown-up and yet still lets me feel like a kid: Sugarboo Designs. i came across their picture frames several years ago and thought, "When I grow up I and can afford it, I would love to put my wedding picture in one of those frames." however, more recently it is their artwork that i am loving because it has a vintage yet green aesthetic that works well with any room and shares messages that i would love to portray anywhere in my home. i think this might be art that i am willing to commit to...


Oops, I did it again

Ahem. Last one. I promise.

J.Crew ivory fisherman's cable knit sweater, $12.50. Inspired by this.


Scotch blood

I am a weird shopper.

I'm always looking, but seldom buying. I pop in to H&M, Anthro, and J. Crew on my lunch breaks, and leave empty handed every time. The last thing I bought in a store was deeply discounted Ellen Tracy tights at the Bay Ridge Century 21 (and even then I put two pairs back, which I'm still regretting). I have unfulfilled shopping carts all over the Internet: Kohls, Zappos, Urban Outfitters, Old Navy. I've had the same classic London Fog trench coat in my Overstock.com shopping cart for MONTHS, and even with the 10% off coupon they just sent me I can't seem to bring myself to buy it. I have major guilt issues when it comes to buying things for myself.

The exception, it seems, is eBay. Over the last two months I have bought the following items, for a combined total of $38.76, not counting shipping. From this you can subtract the $25 or so PayPal credit I had from selling those Steve Madden cowboy boots after all.
Anthro floral shrug in fall colors

Charter Club striped cardigan (stripes = wear with everything)

J.Jill floral blouse, inspired by this outfit

Nine West polka dot blouse ($1.29!) inspired by the '70s polka dots that are everywhere this season

Anthro silk dress ($16.50!), inspired by the Victorian florals I'm constantly in love with

Limited skirt, which is a bit more mini than I was expecting, but that I'll pair next summer with my peach tank and nude Rodarte for Target lace cardigan, inspired by this outfit

So anyway, it could be much worse. But still, I've got to put myself on eBay hold. If nothing else, it's resulting in a closet that resembles a garden.


even more than usual for me, in the winter my home becomes a sanctuary. it is warm and inviting and there are little touches to brighten my day until the sun peaks again. here are some of the top items on my list for making my home more luxurious this winter:

JHubbs and I personify Dorothy Parker's couple that "struggles along on cheese and kisses" and this would make the struggle much more glamorous.

Filled with a little eggnog and brandy I could not imagine a prettier spectacle sprinkled in nutmeg.
Unless it were maybe some mulled wine in this little decanter.
Whether I am collecting pine cones or change it would be thrilling in these beautiful bowls. lunareshome.com
Adding an extra layer of texture and warmth to the bedroom is critical to the aesthetic and it means you can keep your thermometer (and your heating bill) lower.

Having a place to store winter vegetables and glass bottles to be recycled keeps me organized and the heavy open wire frame keeps me stylish.
Cashmere anywhere in the winter makes me happy but having an oversize throw in a neutral (or that lush green for some contrast) keeps my home inviting to everyone who comes over with cold tootsies.


the bean

running through my holiday shopping list and looking for gifts for all sorts of people i refer back to l.l. bean which i admit i haven't glanced at in awhile. and now it is not only on my holiday list for others, i also have my eye on that polka dot dress because their signature line pieces continue to be timeless. i mean truly, that dress could be from the 40s but is equally applicable now. you know why? bc they are literally going back into their archives and remaking their classics with updated fits. hence they are not only an investment but could be heirlooms if you treat them right. 50 years from now my grandchild is going to have it made!

In addition, I know we have a few boys birds who stop by from time to time to check us out and the bean has some awesome duds for them as well: comfy, unpretentious, and nice to cuddle on...


Blackberry bramble

It took me a while to fall for Madewell, because I would get so annoyed walking into their store and being confronted with $60 tank tops, but I can't lie. This dress is really pretty.

You guys know that I post things here because I never buy anything, right? I'm not running out going all crazy with my credit card, don't worry.

(Back to Madewell: I can't, however, get behind the high heel clogs that certain people seem bent on pitching.)


simply lovely

so, the little purple jacket that i put in the last post has been haunting me and i decided to take a look at the rest of the simply vera vera wang line for this season. bc i do not have a kohls in the city i cannot see the collection in person and sometimes forget to check it out online. however, i am super glad that i remembered bc it is still chic and well done and now has me lusting after a few pieces (seen below) particularly the orange ruffle sleeve sweater bc i haven't seen anything like it anywhere else and that black wool wrap jacket bc it is just timeless.