Sparkling Holiday Must-Haves Featuring Touchstone Crystal

Sunday, November 29, 2015

What I'm Wearing: 

When I think of the holidays I immediately think of glitter and sparkles. They really go hand-in-hand between all the decorations and dressing up for parties. I also really love gifting jewelry to friends and family so I was really excited to get the opportunity to share the Touchstone Crystal Fall/Winter collection with you guys. All of these pieces are under $150 and most of them are under $100. Those gorgeous flipside earrings are even under $35, so they are perfect for gifting! They are definitely my favorite because I love the concept of the versatility of a flipside earring. My second favorite piece is probably the White Collar Necklace. The pictures really don't do justice to show sparkly it is. I've been wearing it on repeat and getting tons of compliments. I love the color combination in the Mosaic Necklace. It goes great with a lot of my fall and winter outfits and also adds a pop of color and sparkle to more neutral looks. The Emerson Bracelet is a great neutral bracelet for the season. It can be mixed with gold or pretty much any color and adds a warm sparkle a vast array of looks. The Lariat necklace is fun because there are so many ways that you can wear it and change it up to look like different necklaces. The dazzle pendant is so gorgeous in person and will make a great addition to a lot of my holiday looks. All of these pieces are so beautiful! Which one is your favorite?

Touchstone Crystal is Swarovski's direct selling division. Consultants can host events and earn substantial income and discounts with a fun and social shopping direct sales business. All of the pieces are made exclusively with Swarovski crystals and zirconia. You can learn more about becoming a consultant here and hosting a party here

This was a sponsored post, but all opinions are my own.

Designer Spotlight: The ROPES Maine

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Today I am sharing another great New England designer with you guys, The ROPES Maine. The ROPES celebrates the often overlooked beauty in utility, durability, and function. Each piece is handmade in Maine from authentic marine ropes, dock line, and hardware. The ROPES are great for stacking and also make a statement on their own. They come in a vast variety of color combinations and a few different styles. I like all the styles but because I am so small myself, I am partial to the more petite styles as pictured above.

Shana Ready, the founder and designer, is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design. The ROPES is a homage to both the natural beauty of the Maine coast and the communities, traditions, and way of life that define it. This is the story The ROPES tells in the textures of the dock line, the weight of the hardware, and the faded color of a weathered rope. Each individual bracelet tells the story of the Maine coast and the journey you take it on. Shana was kind enough to answer a few questions for me in order to give you guys a little more insight into The ROPES:

Q: How did you get started with The ROPES?
A: For me, jewelry has always been a vehicle to keep memories alive - some of my favorite pieces I inherited from my grandmother and I've always respected the power jewelry has as a tether to a certain person or time. As a child, I was always very interested in weaving and beading. So, basically as far back as I can remember I've been making jewelry for myself and for friends. But it was just a hobby that I never thought much of, especially when I was focused on my career in apparel design. Funnily enough though, The ROPES was actually born from this childhood habit. One snowy winter day I was fooling around with some of my husband's lobster gear and made two bracelets which would become the Kennebunkport and Portland styles. I started wearing them around; my friends and family loved them and encouraged me to approach local stores.

Q: Can you tell me a little bit about your creative process when you are designing pieces?
A: My creative process is deeply connected to my surroundings and that means progress in the studio often means getting outside of the studio. All the threads of my collection are tied to my environment, neon for instance, is commonly used in fishing and boating for easy visibility at sea, so it has a natural place in my work. I am also drawn to the natural progression and fading of color, and the story that tells. Like how a buoy starts out bright and shiny and over the years becomes weathered and worn down, but takes on a whole new beauty, entirely unique, that tells a story.

Q: What is your favorite thing about living in Maine?
A: I loved living in Boston and New York City, the nearly effortless access to art and culture is unparalleled. After a while though, it was just that, the sheer saturation that I loved as a consumer, I found challenging as a creator. In Maine, inspiration is less obvious, it needs to be sought out, unearthed, earned a bit more, and that's where my creative process lives.

You can purchase The ROPES online at the following retailers: Springer's, Spaces Kennebunkport, Love & Pieces, M. Flynn Accessories, Mark & Graham, Bliss. You can also find a list of retailers by state here.

All images via Springer's. 

Clean and Polished

Thursday, November 12, 2015

I had to share another home from Brookes and Hill Custom Builders, Inc. with you guys. I love how bright it is with lots of natural light and fresh paint on the walls. The classic pieces juxtaposed with more eccentric and rustic ones comes off as polished and refined. It was also just a tiny bit festive and as we are approaching holiday season I thought it was a good time to share this one. 

Happy Veterans Day!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

I just wanted to take a second to send a big thank you out to all of our veterans and wish them a Happy Veterans Day!

Sweater Dress Perfection

Monday, November 9, 2015

What I'm Wearing: 

Dress: Eliza J c/o (Currently on sale and under $60!) Earrings: Loren Hope (similar)

You may recognize this dress if you watched my live segment on Friday. If you didn't and you want to watch feel free to check it out here. I had to share the dress in an actual blog post because I love it so much. It's like my holy grail: navy and white stripes, navy and pink, and a fit and flare. I hardly ever see a sweater dress in this silhouette so I was really excited to find this one. It's also super soft and cozy without being bulky. A definite new favorite. I hope everybody had a great weekend! 

Ten Wardrobe Essentials

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

When it comes to building a wardrobe there are certain items that should be staples in every closet. These are items that will never go out of style and you can reach for when you can't find anything else to wear. They are the key to an effortlessly chic look and can be styled to match your taste

Black Pumps: A good pair of black pumps are a necessity in any woman's wardrobe. They can be dressed up or down, go with everything, and are wearable for every season. Don't be afraid to splurge on a pair of these. If you buy a quality pair they are sure to last you years.

The Plain White Tee. These are fabulous for layering or great on their own. Layer under a sweater, over a tank top, tuck it into a skirt, or wear it with jeans and great accessories.

Day Dress. Everyone should have a dress in their closet that they can grab for weddings, bridal showers, baby showers and other occasions that require you to dress up a little more

Striped Shirt. Striped shirts are also a great layering piece. They will mix well with solids, floral patterns, and other striped pieces. They're also great under a jacket, tucked into a skirt, or with jeans.

Black Pants. The cut can be whatever is your favorite or looks best on you, but they should be a quality pair that makes you feel great. Wear them to work or with a t-shirt on the weekend.

White Button Down. When you think of a white button down you might think boring office wear but they are so much more versatile than you mean realize. Wear it on it's own, tucked in or out, under a sweater or jacket, as part of a suit, or with jeans.

Dark Denim: These are the most universally flattering denim color. If you only have one pair of jeans they should be in a dark wash. They're so easy to wear for a casual outing or dress up for night. You can wear them in whatever cut of jeans you're most comfortable in.

Little Black Dress. A little black dress is a classic for a reason. Add a cardigan or blazer and wear it to the office and transition it to night by changing up your makeup and accessories. It should be well made and fit like a glove, so you feel confident in it. Chose a dress in a style that suits you. The little black dress is both universal and individual so just pick one that makes you feel great.

Elegant Blazer. Every woman needs a good blazer. They can go beyond a professional look and are really great paired with jeans. It's also a great outerwear substitute. If it's not cold enough to reach for your heavy coat you can wear a blazer. Chose one that works for your body type. If you want to appear taller or longer, pick a longer blazer. If you want to accentuate your waistline, pick one that cinches in at the waist. Add a pin to the lapel to customize it. It doesn't have to be expensive, just make sure it fits great.

Nude Shoe: Similar to black pumps these go with everything. If you're a heel kind of girl, go for a nude pump. If you're a flats kind of girl there are tons of cute nude flats out there. Just make sure when you pick out a pair, they're comfortable because you'll be reaching for them a lot.

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Spooky Halloween Cocktails

Monday, October 26, 2015

I love Halloween. It's always a really fun time of year around here so I wanted to whip up a few fun cocktails for you guys. I tried to do this for you last year but I couldn't find the black vodka anywhere. Apparently they had some sort of problem with their distributor and it wasn't available in the U.S.A. However, I was able to find it pretty easily this year so just check the imported vodka section of your local packie. I used a small chunk of dry ice in all of the cocktails to create a spooky fog effect. Be sure to read up on dry ice safety before attempting to serve it in a cocktail. You don't want to touch it with your bare hands so wear gloves or use tongs and be sure it's gone before sipping on your drink. You can find more information on dry ice safety and where you can get it here

Poison Apple Martini 
2 oz. black vodka
2 oz. sour apple pucker
Juice of 1/2 lime

Rim a martini glass with black sugar. Add ingredients to cocktail shaker and shake with ice, strain into glass. 

Ghostly Hallow-rita
2 oz. silver tequila
1 oz. triple sec
2 oz. coconut milk
2 oz cream de coconut 
Juice of 1 lime
Splash of half & half

Rim a pint glass with coconut shreds. Add ingredients to cocktail shaker with ice, shake, and pour into glass over ice. 

Black Widow
3 oz. cranberry juice
1.5 oz. black vodka

Add cranberry juice to glass and fill with ice, then float vodka over the top of the juice.