Friday, December 31, 2010

Gigi's Gear - holiday party

In Nov, I received invitations to 2 holiday parties and thought that was the beginning of more to come. I was wrong. I only went to 2 this season, but I'm happy they even happened since parties have been cut back so much in the past 3+ years. The first event was held at a nightclub. It was work related so I skewed more classic than edgy. The pictures don't look as great as I felt. The dress & necklace were a big hit. The thing I'd change about this outfit is to wear an opaque tight, not sheer. I couldn't find any in my tights drawer. Next fall I'm going to organize my tights in advance to make sure I have what I need.

My lovely Ann Taylor bow neck coat from last year. You can see a much better photo in this post. Danggit, wish I had those solid black tights.

The bow looks ok when undone, not too sad. It reminds me of when men in tuxedos undo their bow-ties at a wedding. I usually wear the coat fully buttoned, of course.

J Crew crystal steps neckace. Very happy I got this one.

I wonder what maroon tights would look like w/this dress. A red based color & the rust brown of the dress might complement.
Dress (6P): Talbots jacquard bow dress (Jacquard dresses here, here, a little drama, super pretty and 50% off)
Necklace: J Crew crystal steps (Similar here, here and here)
Coat (PXS): Ann Taylor 09 (Bow coat by Ted Baker and bow puffer by Kate Spade)
Shoes (7.5): J Crew Juliet - I've since recvd and love my Nine West Ambitious
The Ambitious also come in taupe patent, which is a nude. Even though I have the Bandolino Adivas it's nice to swap if I want to wear nude shoes 2 days in a row.
If you need a lower heel see these, these, these, these, these and these)

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Thursday, December 30, 2010

J Crew - spotted silk Vivie top

J Crew's spotted silk Vivie top (34676) runs 0-14. The color pattern is called black.

Size 0 - Not a typo or place filler. I tried a 0. I think this was a return and was the only one on the rack. I usually take 4 and was able to get this on. I don't know that I'd go for a 2. I'd check chest measurements before committing to a 2 or 4.

Jeans (29): Do I need to tell you? J Crew's toothpick (Similar here and here)
Boots (8): (Similar here, here, here and here)
Also check out b.o.c. by Born, $70

ETA: This is what the back of the top looks like. You can undo the tie closure.

FYI, the Merino sequined polka-dot cardigan looks like the same pattern as the silk Vivie.

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Gigi's Gear - J Crew marled hoodie

This one is from the beginning of Dec. Go on. Bust me. Yeeeess, I just got finished saying black & blue (black tops, blue jeans) is a cop out in my book. However, this look abides by my black & blue rule which is must have visual interest. I accomplished that w/the texture of the cardigan and the kick ass shoes from Lori's Shoes. I've never been to Lori's Shoes. Heck, I've only been to the airport in Chicago on a layover. If I ever get there for any length of time I may visit a store. Or just keep the mystery and satisfaction of online visits. The handful of orders I've made have been most excellent. You also get a real person via email if you want to ask questions about fit. Of course a human is always generally typing a response in a customer service situation. The deal w/Lori's is the heart and soul behind the service. Me likey. And about the blk & blue thing. If you wear it, go for it. I just know I have so many beautiful, unworn items in a variety of colors that can build outfits around.

Sweater (XS): J Crew marled hoodie (Marled here, here, here, here and here)
Blazer: She Said a JC Penney label, 2009? (Similar here, here, here and here)
Jeans (29): Simply lovingthe toothpick ankle jeans (Similar here and here)

Shoes: Sam Edelman (Similar here here, here, here and here)

I think I also have a misc. grey t-shirt on underneath. Or maybe one of my JC graphic tees that never see the light of day. You have any of those? ;-)

ETA --> The F21 tweed coat I blogged about in this post is for sale on the website. Click here to view. I took a M as I do 99% of the time in F21 coats.

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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Banana Republic - a few picks

Banana Republic has a 25% promo that ends today. Use 25BRHOLfor 25% off your purchase. BR has had 30% and 40% off clearance in-stores. Some items aren't available in-stores, so I often just look around online instead of getting out into the stores. I only found one thing in the past couple weeks I've been in the mall and it was this denim tunic. It was about $27 after 40%. I feel like I own something like this, so I'm going to look around before deciding whether to keep it or not. I love the length & layering opportunities. Bring on the layering necklaces! Don't love that it needs to be ironed. However, I think you can take it right out the dryer and it would be ok.

Silk popover - Why do I feel like I own something like this? Or maybe it's something J Crew offered. I love tipped items, so this is a looker in my book. Love the online reviews which inform/caution that the black is raw edged. Boo on that. On the upside, many of us are covered with regular, petite & tall sizes.

BR Monogram Alicia bow tee - I really adore this. It also comes in slick rock, which looks like a very pale tan w/white bow or white body/white bow. If you've been waiting for Anthro's volante tee to go on sale, this might be an alternative. I think Anthro's is more fitted. The BR tee seems to have some flow. I do like the quality of the Monogram line and expect this would be nice. You know you could get some ribbon, tie and pin it. I've thought about doing that, but I haven't been too much in a crafty mood since I survived the DIY-ing of my wedding and my cousin's. The bow looks humongous. Go bow, go!

BR recently gave out a coupon card with 3 coupons good for Saturdays in Jan. BOGO one full price item, get the 2nd for 60% off. Well, I did the math. I calculated the piped top & bow top and it came to $112 or so with the 25% off that ends today. Then I calculate with BOGO 60% and it was $113 or so for the 2 tops. Interesting, huh? I'm not a math person. I mean, I can calculate a straight % off very quickly, of course, while I'm shopping in the stores. But as far as deciding whether 25% off vs the BOGO 60% is the better deal, they're looking equal based on my one example.

Chiffon ruffle high heel

Jeweled foldover clutch (on sale $79.99) - 5 star reviews online. I'm refraining from ordering it in red even though it looks a touch tacky. What can I say. I like to walk the line.

Sequin knit wrap - Pretty colors starting at $34.99. The sequins seem really subtle like faint sparkling stars.

In other news, I got this beautiful, beautiful handbag from Ann Taylor. It's not available online so I had to trek back to the store to get it. I made a couple of phone calls to ensure that they would hold one for me and that the 40% off your entire purchase was still in effect. It was around $118 because our tax is ridic. I really want a striped dress since one I got from Mango fell apart. It had some rope wrapped balls at the neckline and they all fell off, ruining the neckline. Anyway, this knit striped dress at Ann Taylor is really cute. I think the stripes are narrower than I want. Hopefully it'll still be available for me to try it on. Kinda steep at $128 for cotton, although I have to say their dresses are usually done well. Plus, there are always promos, like the current 40% in-store and online with SAVE40. As usual, AT is playing the 'limited time' game and not giving an end date to the promo. I am not a fan of that game.

Style# 182326

The only drawback are the grosgrain handles. I wish they were leather, but I guess I can wipe them clean. Not that I don't use hand sanitizer & wipes all the live long day.

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Endless - bling sandal

I wonder if/when bling will sound old-fashioned. Probably when they come up w/something new. Lemme know if they have and I just don't know of it yet. I've been selling & consigning some items in the past couple of weeks. I had 2 pair of blinged out sandals in my collection. They passed on both pair. Probably because they are open toe and inappropriate due to the weather since the entire shoe is strappy. I thought both pairs of shoes are cute, but they are 7. What possessed me to buy shoes 1/2 size too small. They can't possibly be that old, can they... I decided to see what's out there in the same vein and I came across this bargain:

Lauren Jones Bonnie sandal - It comes in white, black and ivory. Ivory is sold out except for 10. Black has a few sizes remaining. White has all or almost all sizes (wedding shoe!). The description says leather sole, which is cool. I ordered this in black. I'm not 100% sure of the shape that the crystals sit on. It may be too full/round towards the toe, but hey -- it's free shipping both ways so I'll find out when they arrive. Also, select shoes at Endless are an additional 25% off thru 1/3. I guess that's why my total was less than $20. Also, I launched my order thru Ebates, which is currently 7.5% cashback for Endless. My idea for these shoes is to wear them w/black cigarette style pants and a black top of some sort. Let the shoes shine.

Are you going out for NYE? If so what are you doing & what are you wearing? I'll be w/my in-laws and pretty sure we'll stay in. We'll probably go out to dinner another night this week. For that I'm planning on wearing a black silk tunic, thermal top underneath (cue excitement!), black leggings, black tights under and cognac boots. I hope the colors & textures go because I didn't try it on. Watch me end up in the black silk top & jeans. <slaps knee>

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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Gigi's Gear - Anthrofied

Woo hoo! I'm not wearing jeans on the bottom. It takes a lot to motivate me to wear a skirt when it's very cold. I like to feel cozy. I've read about people doubling and tripling tights. I never knew! I'll have to try it. In the meantime, you'll probably see more pant outfits on me like this one.

Jacket (6): Anthropologie boucle de souffle jacket by Elevenses (Similar color here, here and here)
Cords (28s): J Crew FA08 (Cords here, here, here and here)

Here's the blouse close up, which I wore on another day w/a navy cardi and jeans. The 6 is too big, but was on sale for $20.

Top (6): Anthropologie silk blouse by Lil or Odille, sku 19069558 (Pretty prints here, here and here)
Cardigan (XS): J Crew (Similar here, here and love this!)
Shoes: J Crew FA08 (Similar color here, here, here, here, here and spectators, my fave)

For a slew of more Anthro outfits, visit this post on Anthroholic.

I'm not sure what you'll be seeing on this blog in the next month or so. I was thinking about taking Jan off, but decided against it. I definitely want to continue and I think if I take time off, I might not come back. I don't feel particularly inspired by the store offerings right now. I wasn't out in the stores last winter so I don't know what was going on. At this point in time, we've seen a ton of promos and a lot of the merchandise is gone. I like to share & discuss items here that can be ordered online or picked up in stores. I know it's not always possible, but I try. At the moment I'm not interested in trying on clothes and I said, pickings are a bit slim. There are signs of spring, but I'm not really ready to put my mind on that. I'm trying to delve deep into my winter wardrobe and wear most of my items while weather appropriate. I'm sure I have pics of items that I haven't shared yet, so you'll definitely see them. For those of you that blog, you understand that it's a cycle to figure out what to present. I'm sure I'll find a new rhythm or revise my former one.

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Monday, December 27, 2010

Gigi's Gear - leopard coat

I think America's faaaaavorite dressy casual outfit is a black top w/jeans. Next time you're shopping, check out the number of people, esp women, who have on a black top/shirt/sweater with jeans. I call it the cop out outfit. I try to avoid it. I mean, really avoid it. If I do wear a black top w/jeans, I try to bump it up by wearing an unexpected shoe, jacket or jewelry. On this day, I think I went out only for a short bit and decided to quickly build an outfit around the jacket. Yeah, yeah, I see how easy it is to end up in black jeans and a top, but I still try to stay way from it. The jacket is from Forever 21. It's on the heavier side and the texture is brocade, better than what I'd expect from F21. Well actually, I have to say that they tend to do some of their jackets very well. Definitely keep them on your radar for fun jackets if you shop there. I usually find at least one goodie/year.

Coat (M): F21 from 08? (Similar here)
Top (S): INC (Similar here and here)
Jeans (29): J'Crewlet SU08 (Similar regular, regular, petite, and petite)

If I were to wear this again, I'd add jewelry. I might have avoided it because of the huge stone on my wedges.
Shoes: Calvin Klein (Similar color here, here and here)

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Sunday, December 26, 2010

Gigi's Gear - Christmas Day casual

On Christmas Eve we watched some videos from Michael Jackson Vision. I am so glad I got the box set. I knew it would be good entertainment. Who's watching the kids? Michael...Michael Jackson! My nephews had heard almost all of the songs, but hadn't seen Man in the Mirror and a couple other videos. Hey... Who's bad? We kept saying that for the past 2 days. I didn't remember that Scorsese directed the video for Bad and I sure didn't see the full length version. Who's bad!? Instead of repeating me, my younger nephew would say, you're bad! He's 8 and so freaking cute. Both of them are, of course. My sister will witness little girls freaking out around them in the distant future. Hopefully that stays in the future for a good while.

My mom stayed at home on the holiday because she didn't feel well. I had my sister drop her gift off which was the buffalo check jacket. She called us, yelling with excitement about it. She tried it on last Monday and couldn't button the 0. Our SA called 3 local stores for size 2, but they didn't have it. I came home, put on the headset and proceeded to call a slew of stores on the West Coast. My main reason for calling West Coast was because the stores will still open. This worked out great because her coat arrived on Thursday and, of course, in time for Christmas. We also got the Dulphine bling button for her. I don't know if she was just excited about the price or what when she tried it ($39.99 + 30% off). I wasn't a big fan of it, but it does look nice in black.

I'm all glamour, all the time, as evidenced by my outfit. Winkety-wink. I wore the two sweaters w/jeans and then changed into the polka dot pj pants when we settled down for Despicable Me. That movie is hysterical. No jewelry for me because it didn't mix with cooking, picking up after the nephews and playing PS3 games with them.

Sweater (S): Anthropologie hindsight cardigan (#19195312) (Similar here and here)
Slouchy sweater (M): Loft (Similar here and here)
PJs (S): Old Navy (Similar here and here)
Shoes (8): Not pictured, but when I'm at home I often have on Fit Flops

The SHOPNOW for 30% off + free shipping on a net subtotal of $150 or more has officially been posted to the J Crew website. It's good thru Sunday, 1/2. Like for a week, dude. It's very interesting to see the different promos from J Crew we've seen in the past 3-4 months. I don't know if it's interesting-good or interesting-bad. I still don't trust them in some ways. My PS said they're trying to get rid of merchandise. She said she hoped that the company going private will equal a return to better quality. I didn't ask any questions to generate more info from her. The thought that came to mind is that once they get rid of this merch, we won't see as many promos. But hey -- it's all guesswork.

Remember that items ending in .99 are final sale and usually marked w/the red lettering as you add the item to the cart. Items that end in .00 are on promo. The price may go back up so when you see them on promo, it's a good idea to try them with an additional %. The upside is they aren't final sale and you can return them. For example, I got the woolen twill Minnie pants for a net $66 during one of the promos. They're currently regular price. I see a lot of remarks about waiting for prices to go down, but I find that my size/color is often gone gone. Like who know the tissue turtleneck tee is currently sold out in heather graphite, small. Guess my hand fell asleep over the mouse on this one over the past few weeks. I suppose I should NLP my thoughts to say that I always find the items I want in my size. Perhaps I would see different results. ;-)

Items currently on promo include:

* 1035 trouser in herringbone ($98) - I wish these came in petite because the camel color is pretty.
* Cece cracked metallic ballet flats ($98)
* Super 120s Caryn dress ($128)
* Toothpick ankle jeans ($98) - I wear these all the time. I have been wishing that I got a 28 instead of 29, but I think I may just have the waist taken in. It does the gaping thing, which is easily resolved w/a belt, but it would be worth it to have them altered.

There are others, of course...

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Saturday, December 25, 2010

J Crew - marled lambswool après cardigan

J Crew's marled lambswool après cardigan (33611) runs XXS - XL. The color is called heather flax. 100% lambswool.

Size XS - Quite the voluminous sweater. It's nice, but the scale wasn't for me (5'2"). Check it out on Downtown Diaries.
Pants (28496, Size 6): J Crew woolen twill Minnie pant - Too big. I got the warm taupe in size 4.

Jeans (29): J Crew toothpick ankle jean - I now realize this size is too big. I should have the 28s. They stretch out during the day.
Flats (8): J Crew FA08 (Similar color here, here, here and here

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J Crew - Heidi flannel dresses

Heidi dress in Prince of Wales wool (33575) runs 0-12. Not sure if it came in 14. This dress was available in-store & online. The color on this is called charcoal.

Size 4 - The tag on this dress said $119.99. I don't know if it rings up for less (in-stores). I didn't like the two-tone look at the waist -- the part that goes up like a series of triangles. I get the paperbag skirt look, but wasn't a fan of how the two different colors looked at the top of that point. Maybe because the print on the skirt isn't well defined. It's like a faded plaid. Check out this dress on Audreybella and on Shopping On the Fly.

Heidi dress in wool flannel (33587) - Size 4 - Comes in black and steel grey. 0-12. Again, not sure if size 14 was available. This dress was also seen in-stores and marked down to $49.99. It's a bit low cut, but not as bad as some of the other dresses. It might be ok w/only a statement necklace. Or a bralette like this one, this one or this one. Check out this dress on Shop With M.

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