Never ending coats of paint

So truth time: last week didn’t end up being DIY week. Turns out, back in August I kinda forgot that September was trip month (in other words – I’m the worst) that, and my project still needs ONE more coat. This is about one thousand paint coats more than I had anticipated. Soon, it WILL look awesome (note to self: what everyone says about cheap paint needing billions of coats, is true, buy the good shiz.) But, it is happening, tomorrow, after today’s coat dries. Might be late. Might be early. This over-anticipated Pinterest challenge will have it’s day. Tomorrow. Luckily this blog is just for personal fun, otherwise I would really feel bad.

I might still feel a pretty bad.

Speaking of DIY’s – Almost Makes Perfect just posted a DIY I had been thinking of doing FOREVER, she just beat me to it =). Naturally I immediately went and bought some bottles after I read her post. And I am going to copy cat this so hard.

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Today I am listening to: Carried Away by Passion Pit

Am feeling inspired by: The beautiful, white apartment in Sweden where Design Love Fest is visiting (photo by sfgirlbybay)

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Want to be wearing: This cute and flowing jumpsuit worn by the perdy lady at The Tiny Closet

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OMG (cheap) SHOES

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Being a woman, I naturally have some body image insecurities (gasp!), but for the most part, I am comfortable in my own skin – although a bit awkward at times, I do try and embrace it. But, my calves, regardless of how much I work them out, they remain consistently shaped like those baby carrots I like to dip in my hummus. Still, it’s ok, it’s how I am made, but it does make buying shoes very difficult.

I am very skilled at finding thousands of shoes I love the style of online, but I can’t ever bring myself to purchase any because something that may look awesome off, may only accentuates the baby-carrot-ness of my lower legs. In particular, I have been looking for a pair of ankle boots (channeling my inner Cher Horowitz) for, like, ever.

I have probably tried on over 100 pairs in the last year. Really. Anywhere I went that had a contender, I would try them on. The other day, I went into Target and tried on 15 or so shoes, as per usual, and many of the ankle boot variety. Then, I saw them. And the angels sang – or maybe it was just a kid throwing a tantrum a few aisles over, but they worked. My legs are still baby-carrot-like, but the shoes don’t make that any more obvious then it is shoe-less. Oh boy, you guys, the best part: $35.

In the last few months I have donated a lot of clothing and really tried to make an effort to only purchase items that I love. Really define and stick to ‘my style.’ I understand that there may be times that this means spending a little more money for quality, staple pieces that I will want to keep and wear for a really long time. I also always think back to something that was pressed on me in my art classes – the most expensive paintbrush you will ever own is the $6 paintbrush you have to buy 100 times. But these shoes, they really seem to be good quality (I can actually, comfortably run in them, though I won’t be replacing my Nikes for legit jogs anytime soon) and are really solid, for $35, so I am just loving the money saved. The best of both worlds.

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You can buy them online or I have seen them in all the stores right now. Oh, and no Target sponsorship here, I just am really happy with these kicks.

Well, with that here is the tune I’m dancing in my blue black suede shoes to today – it’s an oldie but one of my favorite goodies from high school, Four Tet, As Serious As Your Life

And some serious inspiration coming from this – amazing portrait by Lou Ros, see his (breathtaking) online portfolio here

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Naturally, I need this outfit to go along with my new shoesies – via Lovely by Lucy

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Maybe this will hold me over for a little while, shoe-wise. Pshh, AS IF!

DIY Card and Phone Case

One of my favorite things about finally having (a very small amount of) free time these days is spontaneous DIY projects. I think I was sitting down to write a thank you note for someone, which was something that was actually on my to-do list, when I noticed that I had a little left over suede from a recent project. Naturally, loving the excuse to procrastinate, I started working on something new. The piece I had was a large rectangle, so I rounded off one of the shorter ends, folded it in thirds, stitched up the two sides, flipped it inside out and called it a day. Then I think I got back to that thank you note. Yay for productivity!

Post thank you note, I realized the flap wasn’t wanting to stay closed much so I cut two slits where the flap overlapped with the inside of the pouch, threaded a few thin pieces of suede through the two holes, and the end. I carry a pretty big bag so this little ‘wallet’ is just the right size to hold my important cards, ID and phone, which is really nice when I want to go somewhere and not worry about my large bag getting in the way. I just snatch this up and party on.

Doesn’t get much easier than that.

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Now I just need to mail that thank you note. Life, why you so hard sometimes?

My head wants this hat

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Like, so bad.

/via Free People/

OMG, Shoes

I tend to be the type of person that wears the same earrings every day, maybe rotates two different necklaces, and lets my shoes (and purses) go on and on until I am either stapling or taping them together (both of which, I ACTUALLY have done – not some of my finer moments.) It is also for this reason that I don’t own any bright pink platforms, flower flats, or blue suede shoes. I keep my arsinal small and simple. In fact, I wish I could get away with wearing the same “uniform” every day. It would just remove that whole “challenge” out of the equation. But alas, this is not socially acceptable, and while I do love styling my home, have a great appreciation for fashion, and even pin clothes (including shoes) all day on Pinterest, when it comes down to how I actually dress and shop, I want each piece to be as versatile as possible. I hate the idea of owning a pair of shoes that I can only wear with ONE outfit. I can’t say that this wouldn’t change if I won the lottery, but for now, as an apartment dweller with no space and a wife on a budget, I want my shoes cheap and to get much more than my moneys worth before I need to be super-gluing the heel back into place.

Right now, I am about at the point where my husband is embarassed to see me in my work shoes. They are in rough shape. So when my good friend, Chelsea (who runs her own, very cute, fashion blog, She Said He Said) tweeted a link about how cheap and surprisingly adorable Forever 21’s shoe line was, I quickly browsed and subsequently made a long list of shoes that I desperately wanted. I will admit, I only shop at Forever 21 on occasion, but their clothes are too affordable making it almost hard to avoid. Not to mention they seem to be the Starbucks of women’s clothing and are popping up everywhere. More-or-less, I would say my style isn’t consistantly lined up with theirs, but my goodness the shoes.

Like my apartment, I keep my clothing color palette pretty neutral and unchanged. My walls will forever be painted black and/or white and/or grey, and my shoes will either be black or brown. At least, until my budget greatly increases due to aforementioned lottery winnings. For now, my Forever 21 shoe wishlist is no different. I do have some concerns over the quality of the shoes based on their price, but with the rave reviews, on at least most of my favorites – I imagine I would pretty easily get at least their $20-35 price tag worth of wear out of them.

Here are the seven (yikes) I have narrowed it down to:

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1. Ankle Strap Platform Wedges, $24.80 – These would be a great option for my work shoes replacement.

2. Basket Woven Oxfords, $26.80 – I love the idea of these with some rolled up jeans or leggings or shorts or even a summer dress. Maybe I should also buy a summer dress(?)…

3. Tassle Zip Canvas Booties, $32.80 – These ones might be my favorite. I love the look of the shoes, my only concern is my kankle situation – a trip to the actual store may be needed to try these on before committing.

4.  Faux Leather Cowboy Booties, $32.80 – There may be a repeat-ing kankle issue here, but if not, I love how these look. I’m thinking skinny jeans, skirts, leggings, etc.

5.  Faux Leather Moto Booties, $34.80 – Number four and five are really like brothers from different mothers. The same pros and cons really exist with both – but I need the two color options, naturally.

6.Metal Trim Oxfords, $24.80 – If number three doesn’t work out, I want these in their place. Actually even if number three works out I still kind of love these. Also, they pretty much go with everything.

7.  Lace Up Booties, $34.80 – As much as I often feel like I am trying too hard when I wear heels, they do (normally) help make my disproportionally large, tree-stump legs look a bit better/slimmer. I gladly take any help I can get. And these heels feel a bit more approachable to me.  

Let’s take a poll – which ones need to end up on my feet? All of them, right? That’s what I thought. All of them.

But really, I appreciate any thoughts. Are these just way too cheap that they must be junk-shoes? Am I seeing things and are these actually all fuzzy Hell0-Kitty slippers? Does anyone have any unwanted Forever 21 gift cards they would like to share so I don’t actually have to make any decisions? Do you hate shoes and think I should go back to not ever talking about them? This is a safe space.. bring on the commentary..

** this post was not sponsored by Forever 21, they just have some nice lookin’ shoes. 

GIFTS + the 2013 OUTFIT

We just got back from a nice long weekend with my folks in WA, which we lovingly referred to as Christmasgiving or Thanksmas. I love being with my family, they are incredible, and now both Alex and I feel very fat and happy. Mostly fat.

As we didn’t spend thanksgiving with them and we will be spending the actual Christmas holiday with Alex’s family, we decided to combine a mock-thanksgiving, aka enormous amounts of eating, with some gift-giving. The food was delicious and my parents are epic heroes of Christmas – mostly my mom, she is seriously the holiday champion.

Here are a few of the amazing gifts I was given this year, in case anyone is still looking for some last minute gift ideas for their lovies:

  1. Steve Madden clutch. I wouldn’t normally consider myself a Steve Madden sort of lady, but look at this bag! I am in love. A little black, a little brownish pleather, a little gold. If a bag could define me or my style it might be this oneSteve Madden Clutch
  2. Makeup Brushes by Ecotools. So I really needed this (somehow a mother always knows) – I have a horrid habit of using my fingers as my only means of makeup application – it’s ok, I disgust myself too. It isn’t that I like to get foundation all over my hands and ultimately on everything I happen to touch, but more that I get annoyed with most brushes. Many don’t apply makeup like I want them to or will suck up half the product making things run out much faster, which = $$$. These though, are magical. 100 points for Mom! I feel like a little girl who finally shaved her legs for the first time without cutting herself. I am a grown up! A grown up with makeup brushes! Hooray!Ecotools Brushes
  3. Infinity Scarf from H&M. I know these are really “in” right now, but I am totally jumping on that bandwagon. I kinda hate all norm-y scarfs now. Honestly, it gets windy enough here that the ends were always flying around and driving me insane. This happens no more. And this infinity is a lovely, crocheted little ivory number. It’s like a snuggy for my neck!H&M Scarf
  4. Military Jacket from Nordstrom– this one is from my (RAD) sister. She works at Nordstrom, which I am now finding is SUPER amazing. I have been dreaming of the perfect military jacket for a while now, and finally it is mine. Alex has already made fun of me because I don’t think I have truly taken it off, except for shower-time, since I got it on Saturday. This will surely be a new staple in my attire.Nordstrom Jacket
  5. Urban Outfitters Soap Dispensers. I know, super exciting. But really, they are. They look like little modern white penguins. We got one for the kitchen and one for the bathroom. Maybe these little guys will help kick-start some brainstorming for the redo each of these spaces?UO Soap Dispensers
  6. H&M Gold Bangles. Simple but lovely, these little bangles will probably be on my arm daily – the only variation being whether 3, 9, or 20 are stacked.H&M Bangles
  7. Lip Balm by Maybelline. I have always used ChapStick but my devotion has really been out of laziness rather than true love (sorry ChapStick). It is quite often, unless I have a great recommendation on a product, I just go with the brand I know and don’t waste the energy or money finding the perfect one. And now with lip balm I don’t even have to, because the perfect one was gifted to me. This loud packaging holds some good stuff, and with SPF 20, it helps my lips stay soft while avoiding any burning/drying/cracking. The other great thing is that it doesn’t create any sort of film on your teeth. I don’t know what it was about ChapStick, it did the trick, but after a few minutes of talking/eating/breathing, I felt like I had a little waxy film on my front teeth. The ChapStick would sneak in there and have a slip and slide party on my pearly whites and I didn’t like it. I am pretty anti-ChapStick-teeth-slip-and-slide-parties.Maybelline Lip Balm

So, in summary, don’t be surprised if you see me wearing the outfit below, basically every day of 2013. Does anyone else ever wish they could be like Doug Funny and have a closet full of the same outfit or a uniform from time to time?Outfit 2013v2

Items not listed above:

1 – Weird hat I found at my parents house, they had two so I “borrowed” one, permanently. It doesn’t have a tag and I have no idea where it is from. Sorry, Charlie.

2. Black Tank Top from Old Navy. They only cost, at least they did when I was there and because of this they basically are my source for tanks.

3. Belt from Forever 21. It was only $3, FACT. I don’t even care if it breaks tomorrow… because it only cost $3.

4. Shoes from Bass. I don’t usually shop here, but I happened to be here with someone else buying a pair of shoes during a TWO-FOR-ONE sale. And they have quickly become my favorite shoes. They are really well-made and make me sound like a horsey when I am going down stairs.

5. Black Skinny Jeans from Forever 21. I think they cost $15 and are pretty amazing. I wear them way too much for being cheap pants. They will probably start to disintegrate soon but even after wearing them just one day, I think I got my moneys worth.

Please also note that I am atrocious at dressing myself. This is also why I want to wear the above outfit, daily – I may have found one outfit, finally that kinda, sorta actually works. Most of the time, I just feel like an awkward pre-teen who doesn’t know how to pick clothes for her changing body, except that I am 24 and should have this stuff figured out by now. If I had lots of money I would hire someone to do my shopping and styling for me, but until then, I will continue to be like a big question-mark walking down the street. Well, a big question-mark with one good outfit.

Thank you again Mom, Dad, and Sis! Love you to the sky and back, infinity and beyond.

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