Monday, January 31, 2011

OOTD: Peer pressure can be a beautiful thing.

I've written before about how susceptible I can be to Anthropologie-related peer pressure. Well, that peer pressure hit a fever pitch during the crazy month of Anthro's 25% off "Tag Sale." I found myself succumbing to a few very popular items that I wasn't quite sure I'd wear, but that were much more appealing with an extra 25% off.

Two of those items, the Southward Stop Shirtdress and the Anticipation Heels, joined forces for today's outfit to prove that peer pressure isn't always a negative influence; sometimes it can help us expand our sense of style to encompass something new.

(Click detail collage to enlarge)

Dress: Southward Stop Shirtdress (Anthro) (4)
Undershirt: Drawing Parallels Top (Anthro) (XS)
Belt: Looping Lanes Belt in chocolate (Anthro) (L)
Tights: Perfectly Plaid Tights (Anthro) (M/L)
Shoes: Anticipation Heels (Anthro) (8.5)
Short Necklace: (Name?) (Anthro)
Long Necklace: Poms & Trinkets necklace, with the Poms & Trinkets removed (they are SO noisy, and I was going to class) (Anthro)
Watch: Fossil (Phew! Not QUITE all-Anthro.)
Earrings: Street Vendor on my Block
Ring: Oh Hello Friend (Etsy, here) (Thanks to Carol for mentioning this shop many times on her blog)
Hairtie: Jcrew Factory

(You may recognize this as an adaptation of Look 6 here)

I love the way the Anticipation Heel worked out with this dress. I'm trying to get over my fear of not matching my belt to my shoes; while I have no qualms about breaking many seemingly fundamental fashion rules (see, e.g., the use of three different patterns in today's outfit), I still cringe when my belt/shoes/purse don't match. Not sure where this comes any of you have similar irrational reactions to fashion choices that are objectively fine?

The Anticipation Heels also fulfilled a nice function on the sludgy streets. I wore this outfit on Friday after NYC got hit with about a foot of snow overnight.

I needed cute shoes that would also function as stylish monster trucks, elevating me high above the mud and crushing all in their path. These shoes practically jumped at me from my shelf and they performed admirably --- my toes did not even get wet!

Speaking of peer pressure, I've added a bunch of new items and taken a lot of reductions on my sale blog!  Especially these shoes, which were marked down from $30 to $20, in one day!  I'm crazy like that.  As always, I'm open to reasonable offers, so feel free to make one.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

some sunday inspiration

How much do you love this orange + yellow combo?! That's rhetorical. Of course you love it. (Image from The Look 4 Less)

How evil is my friend over at Cookbook Archaeologist for making this? That's rhetorical. Of course she is the spawn of Satan. I mean, really, really evil, right? This shouldn't exist while we've got an obesity epidemic going on and while it's still (barely) January. (via The Cookbook Archaeologist)

This sort of falls into my "ugly but loveable" category, but unfortunately also in my "not for more than $100" category. Frankly, I feel more confident in my ability to rock this concept in lime green/bright purple/zombies than orange/blue. And no, I don't think that's a bizarre statement.

Something about the cheek patches in this picture this makes me want to create a Halloween costume around the concept. Like a plastic surgery doll. It would be sort of scary and sort of social commentary. (Image from Tavi at Style Rookie)

This sells for $130 here, but it would be easy to make this on the cheap since it's just tissue paper and mylar. I like Emily's suggestion of using something like this to adorn a large, empty wall. Living in NYC I lack large empty walls, but I may need something like this when I move to DC in June. Also, I should finish my chandelier first. (Image from Cupcakes and Cashmere)

Peanut Butter Cup Bars. Recipe from Brown Eyed Baker. Also, check out her beautifully decorated cakes here! My favorites are the Super Mario Brothers Cake (30 up! Love it!) and (of course) the Poker Cake (would love to attempt something like that).

This easy afternoon craft project makes me wish I still babysat, because it would make a great activity to do with kids! Introduce them to needles at a young age, I always say. (via Sew I Thought)

This article about getting your workout done in the morning ALMOST pushed me out of bed in time to go to the gym. I have high hopes for Monday!

Is this the definition of "meta"? (Image from Coffee with the Hermit)

Emma Pillsbury-style sweater clips on Etsy (most <$25).

Also, speaking of Etsy, I won my first blogger giveaway from Sandra over at Closet at Capacity!  (Sort of funny that I won my first giveaway right after finishing my first giveaway, huh?)  This is the lovely ring I won. Sandra's story is so interesting; she used to work at Anthropologie, and then she opened her own vintage jewelry shop!  Her designs are gorgeous; you can visit her Etsy shop or jewelry blog and drool over her stuff.  I'm so attracted to this whimsical necklace:

With that, I hope you all had a wonderful weekend!  Anyone do anything exciting?

Saturday, January 29, 2011

New Commenting Engine: Disqus

After experiencing a steady stream of small but annoying commenting glitches in the last week or so, I finally snapped and removed the Intense Debate commenting engine.  Since I googled a few blog entries comparing the two engines while doing my due diligence in both the original install and the eventual uninstall, I figured I'd contribute something back to the body of knowledge.

My goal in using a commenting plug-in was to allow threaded discussions (i.e., replies that show up under their original post) and user notifications of new comments.  I like the idea of a blog being a springboard for discussion, and these two features more than any other seem to facilitate that.  I needed something that would work without requiring much attention.  I consider myself relatively tech-savvy; clearly I'm not an HTML genius, but I bring this up by way of saying that I don't think I was making any stupid mistakes here.

Things I Liked About Intense Debate:
  • Their user interface is easy to use and looks sleek
  • Roxy uses it at Effortless Anthropologie, so a good portion of my readers are already familiar with it and/or have accounts.
  • Installation was a total snap; their instructions are very clear, and they set up the how-to to open your blogger settings in a frame within the page, so you can read the instructions and change your settings at once.  It's great.
  • Email notifications as both a commenter and a moderator are great, and I liked being able to reply to comments from my email.
  • The support staff was generally quite helpful and responsive, even though I'm sure I was snarky or annoying in my moments of frustration.

Things I Didn't Like About Intense Debate:
(note: all of these points will boil down to one major problem, which is that the system is glitchy as hell.)
  • If I fiddled with some seemingly unrelated setting on my blogger account, suddenly my comment links would disappear.  The comments would still be there, but there was no link on the home page showing the number of comments (or providing a link from which to leave a comment).  Confusing and uncool, especially when it happens several times a week.  I basically lived in fear (overstatement) of touching any of my blogger settings or adding any new widgets.
  • Sometimes the comment links would disappear for no apparent reason, through no action of my own.
  • Tech support's solution to every problem --- EVERY problem --- is to "uninstall as a widget and reinstall as a template."  Unless you are currently using Intense Debate as a template, in which case they want you to uninstall as a template and reinstall as a widget.  Seriously.  That'll fix everything, they say.  Not only does it NOT fix everything (and sometimes creates new problems), but it seems akin to just kicking the TV in the hopes that it'll stop fritzing out.
  • The final straw occurred when I realized that Intense Debate was regularly eating all comments made directly through google readers instead of through the website.  I decided to switch to a template to fix the problem, but then that of course deleted all the links to my comments from the homepage.  Intense Debate support told me that the problem related to the amount of info on my home page, despite the fact that none of this was a problem mere moments before; no matter whether I used a widget or a template (and no matter how few entries I displayed on the home page), the problem would not be repaired.  Tech support had no solution except to live with it.
  • In fact, tech support blamed the problem on GOOGLE, saying that some of GOOGLE'S code was interfering with INTENSE DEBATE'S code.  Honestly guys, Google can do whatever the hell they want --- they're GOOGLE.  YOU are the peripheral and it's YOUR job to ADAPT your stuff to fit whatever Google is doing.  I was shocked by their attitude; it's no surprise there are no broader solutions to the glitches I was experiencing when this outlook (arrogance?) is at the core of matters.
You'll notice that as of about 3pm on Friday, I switched to Disqus.  I'm not sure if things will be better with this system, as we're only 8 hours into its use and Intense Debate didn't really start presenting problems until a few weeks ago.  Disqus shares the features of Intense Debate that were important to me---namely, threaded responses and email notification of replies (along with replies by email and email moderation).  It also allows logins through facebook and twitter, as does Intense Debate.  Time will tell whether people have issues posting from their feed readers; however, Disqus had an easy-to-find comment RSS link to add to the feeds that I suspect will solve the problem before it develops.

The Disqus installation went smoothly, and I was able to import all my old Intense Debate and Blogger comments into Disqus form (although the threaded replies did not transfer over).  One important distinction I noticed already:  I initially experienced trouble uploading comments from Blogger into Disqus.  I emailed tech support and received two automated responses (which told me to change a setting that the system could see I needed to change) and one human response.

Although I was more impressed with the depth of personal attention I received with Intense Debate support, the human response from Disqus sort of epitomizes what I hope will be the main difference between the two platforms.  Disqus explained that there was a larger issue with blogger that was preventing the comments from importing, and that Disqus was working with Blogger/Google to fix the situation.  Note that Disqus did not expect Google to accommodate them---instead, they worked with Google's coders to figure out what was going on so they could make the software work together.

That's the way it should be.

I'll come back and update this post for posterity once we've had some time to test out the system.  In the meantime, I'd love your feedback on Disqus.  The whole reason I wanted a new commenting system was to enhance your experience.  Do you like the Disqus layout?  Are you having any trouble posting or viewing comments?  Please weigh in!

For further reading:
Tammy Hart Designs: preferring ID
Learn to Duck: preferring Disqus and noting their ability to innovate and willingness to work in suggestions for product updates (compelling).  The article also brings out an important point that Disqus has made many important changes in the last year or two and improved, while ID "languished".  This is important to keep in mind when reading older comparisons of the two products.
Inquisitr: preferring ID.  Note that it was written in 2008, and I'm inclined to chalk up some of the issues with Disqus to an older interface...but again, I have little experience on the matter so far.
Less Annoying Software: This is a 2010 article and it recommends Intense Debate.  Interesting that the reason it recommends the plug in is the same reason I removed it: they ran into bugs that prevented comments from posting and were not satisfied with the customer service.

Edit: I received an email from Intense Debate support in response to the email chain we had going yesterday to figure out why the comments made through feedburner were not posting.   Read the email after the jump.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Charity Poker Tournament in D.C. on Sunday!

I don't talk about poker very much on this blog, but Texas Hold 'Em has been a love of mine since I was a wee Master's student back in 2007. I think the game is almost perfect: there's gamesmanship, strategy, a small amount of easy math, and a social setting around the table.

The dreaded ace on the river!

I love learning how to read people to find their strengths and weaknesses; I'm not great at it yet, but I've gotten much, much better at processing body language and betting behavior to determine whether someone has a better hand than me. Those skills are valuable in many areas of life! It also makes me feel powerful to be one of the few women around the poker table. When I play tournaments in Atlantic City, I'm regularly the only girl at the final table. Succeeding in the man's world around the poker table teaches me, in some small way, how to fight to the top in the man's world of Big Law. (Am I the only one with a traditionally "manly" hobby?)

It is with these hearty emotions that I strongly recommend that those of you in the D.C. area check out this wonderful charity poker tournament that will take place this Sunday, January 30, at the Hard Rock Cafe in D.C.!

The tournament will raise funds for a beautiful organization called One Heartland. One Heartland is dedicated to helping children with HIV/AIDS. They run a number of camps across the country to encourage acceptance and social integration. They also tour the country to raise awareness of pediatric AIDS and encourage compassion. That pediatric AIDS even exists breaks my heart, and organizations like this deserve our support for providing such wonderful services to a vulnerable population.

There will be at least $10,000 in prize money at this event! As if that's not enough for you, all buy-ins are completely tax deductible! Who doesn't want to be in a lower income tax bracket? Even if you lose, your accountant wins!

Click here for more information and to purchase your tickets online. The tournament structure is designed for a nice, slow pace ensuring lots of playing time. View photos of past events here.

The Details

When: Sunday, January 30
Check-in: 11:00am
Tournament Start: 11:20am
Lunch Break: 12:40 pm - 1:20 pm
Registration/ Buy-in Ends: 1:20 pm
Tournament End: ~7:00pm

Where: Hard Rock Cafe DC, 999 E Street NW (Metro Center)

Even if you don't play poker (or don't live near D.C.), let your friends know about this great organization and this fabulous event! If you'd like to make a donation to One Heartland in lieu of playing, you can donate online through this link.

For those who do play, you may be lucky to get one very stylish Jewish Girl as your dealer...

I promise to deal you aces at least once. Just use promo code "FATCHANCE" during the shuffle.

And the Sweaty Bands winner is...

Congratulations to VintageGlammz! You nabbed yourself a wonderful Sweaty Band! (warning: clicking the Sweaty Band link plays music)

This fabulous headband will be perfect for keeping your long, flowing (and perfect amount of) beautiful hair out of your face while you're attempting the downward dog! It'll also do a great job of keeping stray strands out of your ice cream cone if you have any tendency to eat it a little too enthusiastically. Guess which one I learned from experience? Hint: I don't do yoga. (Though I want to start!)

Glammz, send me an email at to claim your prize. I can't wait to hear what you think of Sweaty Bands...I'm a total convert!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

OOTD: "You're turning violet, Violet!"

Don't forget: Today is the last day to enter my Sweaty Bands Giveaway! Click here to submit your entry before midnight tonight.

Today's outfit is brought to you by the "One Color from Head to Toe" taboo in Amy K.'s "Breaking the Rules" challenge...and the color blue. And Apple ComicLife. And blueberries. Icy sludge, on the other hand, had nothing to do with anything and was generally no help at all.

Consider the blueberry...

Any exploration of the viability of dressing entirely in blue would be remiss without mention of the irrepressible Violet Beauregarde, who forged new ground in head-to-toe blueness by turning herself into an actual blueberry in Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory. While Violet's ultimate results left something to be desired, she remains a pioneer in the field of blueberry emulation:

"What do you get when you only wear blue?
Sacrifice green, orange, brown and grey too?
What do you think you could possibly wear?
And how many folks will stop...and...stare?
Oompa Loompa doopidee doo..."

I think I did a somewhat better job with this look than ol' Violet, there. Of course, in fairness to Miss Beauregarde, my blueberry appearance had the advantage of being voluntary. Perhaps a matter of hair-splitting, but it's only sporting to acknowledge the distinction.

Hello blueberry. I shall call you Violet Beauregarde.

This head-to-toe-color rule was a lot more difficult to fashionably break than I thought. For one thing, the shades of blue were kind of touchy. In an effort to avoid overwhelming matchiness, the first version of this outfit involved another layer of blue, but the brighter shade (and extra layer) made the whole thing seem chunky:

Stripping down to the underlayer chic-ened it up a bit. Once I got rid of the top shirt, I was able to tuck in my under shirt without adding too much bulk to my waistline. Tucking in the shirt also had the benefit of showing off this unique but maddeningly random bright gold button on the skirt:

The matching shoes weren't easy, either. The shoes I wanted to wear, and that I photographed, are these navy blue lovelies from Seychelles:

Anthropologie sold these as the "Sweeping Stitch Heel," in black and teal colorways. They are currently on sale in Anthro stores for $60 (sold out online). You can also buy them full price ($90) in mustard, charcoal, or navy (pictured). I got mine for $60 on, but they've since sold out of this color.


Unstoppable New York Suede-Ruining Sludge: meet Mild-Mannered and Mildly Water-Resistant Leather Booties

...So suede pumps were replaced with the above leather booties (only slightly more practical). But for the purposes of this OOTD, we're going to pretend I went out with the pumps:

As it was meant to be.

With a simpler, monochromatic look, my clunky accessories were able to make their own statement (the necklace's statement, incidentally, IS ALWAYS TYPED IN ALL CAPS). The belt helped break up the otherwise continuous line of navy blue with a bit of texture and a pop of light blue bordering. Matchy-matchy? Yes. But choosing a simple, classic color kept this from looking weird (I think. Agree/Disagree?). Choosing a non-black color avoided replication of the typical New York Uniform. ...Not that dark blue is functionally distinguishable from black, but it's the principle of the thing. See also, Preppy with a Twist, circa 2009 (acknowledging the value of the monochromatic NYC uniform in a color other than black, and displaying her own lighter interpretation)

I rarely wear this necklace, despite how much I love it, because it overpowers everything I wear it with. My monochromatic blueberry suit could care less about being overpowered, so the jewelry could just sit and be outrageous without competing for attention.

Top/Undershirt: Tissue V-Neck Long Sleeve Tee (JCrew, here) (M)
Overtop: (Banana Republic)
Skirt: Button Sampler Skirt by Odille (Anthro) (thanks for the name, Anjali) (4, but snug)
Tights: Opaque Tights in Navy, by Hue (Anthro)
Belt: Gift Bow Belt (Anthro) (M? Maybe L?)
Suede Shoes: In With The New pumps in navy (Seychelles, here)
Leather Booties: Blue Horizons Booties, by Everybody (Anthro; scored these for $30 during 25% off sale!) (40)
Necklace: (ALDO)
Ring: Strobe Light Ring (Anthro)
Bracelet: No idea. Filene's Basement in 2007, maybe.
Earrings: Pearl Petals by tjbooboo (Etsy, here, but shop temporarily closed)
Watch: Fossil (similar here)

One final aspect of this outfit situation that unquestionably worked in my favor: my roommate didn't come home during the five minutes I decided to take action shots with real blueberries:

Now if you'll excuse me, I think it's about time for my juicing.

Note: This entry has been "turned up to 11" by the combination of two hours of sleep last night, an unexpected extension on work, and an O.D. on mochi ice cream (thanks a lot, Stephanie).

Disclaimer: I got awesomely called out by a friend yesterday because I wasn't wearing my Chloe dress from the OOTD I posted that day. I, in fact, was wearing my third iteration of today's OOTD (Seychelles Pumps --> Everybody Booties --> Aldo Rainboots when I could no longer deny the expanding puddles on the street). Around here, OOTD sometimes means OOTOD ("Outfit of the Other Day").

Also: It's fun to talk about this blog with people I know "in real life." As funny as it is to hear the same disclaimer over and over from my friends ("I kind of feel like a stalker, but I was reading your blog...") the guilt is totally unnecessary. Trust me; my innate Jewish sense of the necessity of guilt has never failed.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

OOTD: Seasonally Inappropriate

On Monday night, I stumbled upon Amy K.'s fabulous blog feature for the week --- "Breaking the Rules" --- and I've since been hooked. Amy's concept involves breaking one fashion rule each day for the week. I didn't participate the first day (mixing patterns), but I'm committed to sticking around at least through Thursday (I don't think I can rock the "tights and sandals" look in general, let alone with snowfall outside my door). You should join in the fun! Tomorrow is "one color from head to toe."

I like having a "prompt" for getting dressed in the morning. It reminds me of creative writing assignments from high school language arts, the kind that gave you a first sentence ("I haven't seen my mother in 15 years") or a word ("warmth") and required you to write for fifteen minutes without stopping, just to see where you end up. With writing --- as with dressing, it seems --- you often end up somewhere you didn't expect.

For me, that "somewhere" was "the playground in Morningside Park" and "in the middle of a soft, thick snowfall." Today's rule to break was "no spring colors and/or prints in winter." Here's where I ended up:

I do think this would have looked better with a longer, chunkier cardigan as a few of you suggested here, but I was shooting for color with this outfit and the green fit the bill. Length-wise, I don't particularly like where it cuts off with this dress.

Dress: See by Chloe (thrifted, here)
Cardigan: August Silk (pre-weight loss) (PL)

Belt: Punch Card Belt (Anthro) (M) (similar here for $10, here for $7) (check out these other blatant Anthro knockoffs: Charlotte Russe Knockoff ($9.50) and Forever 21 Knockoff ($6.80) of Anthro's Ring-Cinched Belt ($48); Charlotte Russe Knockoff ($5.50) of Anthro's Soft Bow Belt ($30?); Forever 21 Knockoff ($6.80) of Anthro's Synapse Belt ($48) (spotted by Kim of Anthroholic and reported by Look For Less); Forever 21 Knockoff ($5.50, brown) of Anthro's Snakebite Belt ($30?))

Tights: Hue Opaque Footless Tights (Anthro) (I've had these tights for almost a year but have always felt ridiculous every time I tried to wear them. I liked them with this outfit, though...and they were super warm!)
Earrings: (Anthro?)
Boots: Andria Boot (Lucky Brand, here)
Necklace: JCrew? (thrifted) (see it on Emma Pillsbury, in pink, here)
Watch: Fossil (second-hand) (similar here)

This is all you get. At this point, I was starting to lose my fine motor control in the fingertips and figured it was time to call it a day.

Frostbite is a small price to pay for better lighting.

PS: Still time to enter my giveaway!

PPS: Thanks for your advice on this. I decided to buy them, and I'm gonna return them if they're not amazing in The Good Way or if I can't figure out a few ways to wear them on non-Halloween.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Packing Light: The Weekend's in the Bag

I've always thought of myself as a pretty low-maintenance girlfriend. It's true, I do love shopping and getting dressed up, and I don't like being cold and I am MISERABLE to be around if I'm really really hungry --- but in spite of all this, I think I fall below the curve when it comes to female maintenance level. I rarely blow dry my hair, I often leave the house without makeup (or with only tinted moisturizer or foundation faker), I don't demand fancy dinners, and I didn't bat an eye when BF decided to go to Brazil for Carnivale during Valentine's Day last year.

I mean, come on. I'll take those props at any time now.

Still, I fear I've lost some of my low-maintenance points as of late. The last few times I've stayed with the BF in DC, I've brought along a huge suitcase. Ginormous. This bag falls in the "might-be-carrying-a-coarsely-chopped-up-corpse" genre of big and heavy. In fairness to me, I was packing for a stay of an unknown duration and featuring unknown events and activities, but still. A huge suitcase is the opposite of "low maintenance."

This weekend, I intended to atone. I was bussing down to DC to be a poker dealer for a charity poker tournament BF organized through his poker company.

In all, I needed to pack an outfit to wear for:
  • an externship Friday afternoon (and subsequent bus travel Friday night);
  • the charity poker tournament - the dealer uniform is supposed to be a white tuxedo shirt, black pants, and a bow tie;
  • whatever we end up doing on Saturday night, which could be anything; and
  • the bus trip back to NYC on Sunday.
After some extensive thought, I managed to whittle down my necessities until they fit into one over-the-shoulder tote bag. In an unprecedented move, I even left my jewelry box at home.

Weekend in a Bag
I attempted to make you a Polyvore set resembling my suitcase, but it was a disaster since I couldn't find some of the items I packed on the database (and also because I suck a bit at graphic design). It does help give you the basic sketch of my plan, though: a few core items with minor changes revolving around them like planets around the sun.

The plan: utilize the same basic bottom and just change tops every day. I picked the most versatile pants I own: my AG Stevie Cords. I have these in dark blue, purple, and khaki; I opted for purple on this trip since they are a formal enough color to work in a dressy situation if Saturday night turns fancy, but they are also close enough to black to possibly pass for an appropriate dealer uniform.

I accessorized with low-heeled teal Mary Janes for a pop of color and ease in walking (although Heaven forbid there was a snow storm) and a belt from Jcrew that looks like a tie and can fit around my waist or around my hips. I limited my jewelry to three pieces: my trusty goes-with-everything Anthro frog earrings, Anthro's Feeling Dapper Necklace, and the nicest watch I own, my Omega Seamaster deep sea diving watch (a graduation gift from my dad, this is actually a man's watch. It's huge compared to the size of my wrist but I love it, and the only place it ever gets the attention it deserves is from men around the poker table.).

Here are the outfits. My tripod didn't make the packing cut, so please excuse the odd picture angles:


The needs: business casual for an internship seminar, comfort for a 4.5 hour bus ride

The result: A crisp button-down shirt and soft merino wool cardigan show off my conservative, Banana Republican side. The Feeling Dapper Necklace and J.Crew Belt/Tie seemed like a less formal homage to traditional business wear (although I did feel a bit like the man-repeller). The cords are dark enough to work for a more casual office feel, although I wouldn't wear them to work on a non-Friday. The flexibility of the belt meant I wasn't uncomfortable while sitting during the bus ride.
(Check out this outfit as an example of a "Taboo Color Combination" in Amy K.'s fabulous blog feature this week, "Breaking the Rules")

Shirt: Tattersall Ruffle Shirt (Banana Republic, $30 here) (S)
Cardigan: Grosgrain Shirred Placket Cardigan (Banana Republic, $60 here in tall sizes only) (M)
Pants: AG Steve Cords in Wine (28)
Shoes: Xhilaration for Target (9)
Necklace: Feeling Dapper (Anthro)
Belt: Jcrew
Earrings: (Anthro)
Watch: (Omega)

Saturday, Part 1

The needs: Something resembling the uniform all dealers are supposed to wear, which is a white tuxedo shirt, bow tie, black pants, and black shoes.

The result: Well, the black shoes definitely were not happening. Some might say that the purple pants were kind of cheating, too, but in low lighting they look almost black. I couldn't really get around the tuxedo top, and I'm pretty sure there's no way to make this bulky thing look cute. I did my best. Maybe a vest next time?

Shirt: (JCrew Factory Outlet) (S)
Undertank: (Zara Basics)
Pants: AG Steve Cords in Wine (28)
Shoes: Xhilaration for Target (9)
Necklace: Feeling Dapper (Anthro)
Belt: Jcrew
Earrings: (Anthro)
Watch: (Omega)

I think I still looked pretty professional, despite my departures from the uniform:

Saturday, Part 2

The needs: An up-for-anything Saturday night outfit.

The result: We ended up at a friend's house drinking wine, eating popcorn, and watching Dark Knight in HD. It was a great way to wind down after a busy day. I think this outfit would have performed equally admirably in a bar or at a restaurant.

Shirt: (Elie Tahari) (S)
Undertank: (Zara Basics)
Pants: AG Steve Cords in Wine (28)
Shoes: Xhilaration for Target (9)
Necklace: Feeling Dapper (Anthro)
Belt: Jcrew
Earrings: (Anthro)
Watch: (Omega)


The needs: A comfortable outfit for brunch and the 4.5 hour bus ride home.

The result: I was comfortable, although I found myself longing for a chunky sweater to keep warm on the bus. Since the air temperature in NYC is reminiscent of "The Day After Tomorrow," I promptly added one when I got home (see it on Thirteen here; mine is a less exciting navy blue color).

Shirt: (Gap) (M)
Undertank: (Zara Basics)
Pants: AG Steve Cords in Wine (28)
Shoes: Xhilaration for Target (9)
Necklace: Feeling Dapper (Anthro)
Belt: Jcrew
Earrings: (Anthro) (my ears are so red from the cold!)
Headband: (Anthro) (I discovered this at the bottom of my purse)
Hairtie: Gone to 'Frisco Ponytail Holder (Anthro)
Watch: (Omega)

Overall, I'd say my mission was accomplished! So much so that I'll probably repeat the formula with my dark blue AG Stevies when I go back to DC for another charity poker tournament this weekend! I was especially amazed that my Stevies still look completely clean and unworn, even after wearing them nonstop for three days. Impressive, Adriano Goldschmied! Impressive indeed.

Edit: for another stylish take on packing beautifully, check out this video from the Girls with Glasses, via KateSpade-aholic.


I sometimes experience a unique shopping compulsion. And no, it has nothing to do with Anthropologie (I said a it is a UNIQUE compulsion).

The compulsion is: I sometimes find hideously ugly items irresistible. If the item is one-of-a-kind, weird, strange, bizarre, and unlikely to be repeated in human history, I will probably buy it if the price is right (see, e.g., the Childhood Secrets Necklace). Although I generally think I have decent taste in largely agreeable clothes (see yesterday for an example), I am drawn to unstoppably ugly merchandise like a moth to a bug zapper. I know it's no good for me, but the blue light is just SO GARISH I MUST HAVE IT.

I share this embarrassing fact with you, readers, because I have no other way to explain why I am so outrageously attracted to these monstrosities:
But I am. Oh, I am so drawn. If this shoe were an impossible person, I imagine it would be the love child of a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle and a Zombie who happens to be going through an 80's phase. And is afraid of spiders.

I'm not sure how much longer I can resist these abominations. I got as far as the order confirmation page on Endless and then I x-ed out of the window. For $45 (and free shipping both ways), these may be worth a try-on at least. (Incidentally, these shoes will totally be FREE if I win Kathleen's giveaway over on her lovely blog, Princess of Taylor. She's giving away a $50 gift card to the store of your choice! See details here.) (Also, you can still enter my somewhat less awesome but equally free giveaway here!)

I'm hoping you guys will either: 1) talk some sense into me, or; 2) enable my compulsion to the point that I no longer feel guilty about it. There are only two left in my size and I am irrationally concerned that they will sell out.

Make no mistake, readers, I am not being sarcastic. I'm serious as a spider attack.

Monday, January 24, 2011

OOTD: Ice Queen

Parka: Uncommon Field Jacket By Sanctuary (Anthro) (M) (AKA the "Frost Twill Parka" from non-Anthro vendors)

I bought this parka for 25% off the sale price on Wednesday with every intention of returning it, but I'm not sure I can bring myself to do it. It's kind of tight in the upper arms (can you see it pulling a bit in the pictures?), but it's just so darn cute. And it's lined with something soft and fuzzy. And it's not like it cuts off circulation or just has the potential to be slightly uncomfortable if I dwell on it too much.

Maybe I'm just blinded by how cute it looks with the Tria sweater skirt...?

How else am I going to keep warm on those days when a black ruffly coat will overwhelm my delicate outfit?

Please, don't take my parka away. It's cold. And I'm delicate.

I dunno. I don't have any other white coats. And after I saved so much money this week on the Tria skirt and the Oxford Boots, I really deserve a parka. ...right? ("That's how they getcha!")

I have conquered my fear of having my picture taken from a lower angle!

Shirt: Floral Frappe Top in lilac (Anthro, $30 here) (M)
Skirt: Tria Sweater Skirt (Anthro) (M) (did I already mention that I only paid $15 for this skirt?)
Belt: Elementary, My Dear Belt (Anthro)
Tights: Hue Opaque Tights in copper (Anthro) (2)
Shoes: Lavandula Heels by Everybody (Anthro) (39.5)
Necklace: (J.Crew Factory)
Earrings: (via Ideeli)
Hair tie: Gone to 'Frisco Ponytail Holder (Anthro)
Watch: Fossil

(You can see this outfit, along with many other lovely reader outfits, on Kim's reader outfit post over at Anthroholic!)
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