accessories

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If you’re like me and wait until the very last minute to begin your Christmas shopping [next year i'm starting promptly after Halloween. i swear.], do not panic! All will be well, yes, all will be well because this year it’s Crosell & Co. [900 N. Michigan Ave., Level 5, Chicago] to the rescue.

Located right off the Mag Mile, Crosell & Co. specializes in eclectic, original, art-designed items. A variety of one-of-a-kind gifts, tableware, home furnishings, jewelry and decorative accessories line the shelves of this whimsical shop. Each treasure has been meticulously handpicked from artists and designers in New York, Paris and London and, of course, our very own Chitown.

One of my favorite items is the Fisherman Salt [pictured below] by Le Pere Pelletier [$26]. I love the rustic packaging and the salt itself is premium selected sea salt with a blend of herbs, peppers and sugars. It’s the perfect gift for the person who has it all.

Good luck with your last minute shopping everyone!

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Move over Topshop. Step aside Asos. There’s a new heir to ascend the British eTailer throne.

We’d like to introduce you to Very.com, your new one-stop-shop for affordable on-trend fashions for men and women. With speedy shipping + returns [both are free for orders over $98], over 400 brands and celeb partnerships à la Whitney Port [love her] you’ll find something for everyone on your shopping list this year [& maybe a little something for you too]!

To celebrate their stateside launch, Very.com has graciously offered navy + cream readers an exclusive opportunity to receive 20% off everything on the site. It’s true! Simply click on the image below [you'll be redirected], enter your email address and voilà! You’ll score 20% off brands like French Connection, Miss Sixty, DKNY and more.

Just a few things I’m currently coveting from Very.com…

{nude patent oxfords – $48}

{leopard clutch – $65}

{rust one-shoulder fringe dress – $60}

{printed blouse – $48}

Happy shopping everyone!

 

*disclosure: i received compensation for posting this advertorial, however the words & opinions expressed are my own. now what are you waiting for – start shoppin’!

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I love the animal print trend but am not quite brave enough to rock the look with clothing. The perfect baby step? Sally Hansen Salon Effects nail polish strips in leopard print!

This was my first run at applying these fancy nail polish strips. Overall it was pretty easy and definitely less time consuming than a regular at home mani. No dry time is a huge plus for me because I always manage to chip or scratch my mani’s no matter how hard I try.

The kit was $9.99 at Walgreens and comes with 16 decals. I only used five decals because I have short nails and there was enough material per decal to use on two nails. Essentially you’re paying ten bucks for three manicures, not bad right?

It comes with a handy dual nail file/buffer and a mini cuticle stick.

The directions are very straightforward – just peel off the backs, stick them on and file off loose ends. If leopards aren’t your thang they have other funky looks too – neon solids, glitter, even a lacy print. If you’re looking to try something different it’s a fun alternative to your everyday polish. I give Sally Hansen Salon Effects in Kitty, Kitty [ha] two paws up!

The box says it lasts up to 10 days. So far so good!

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… I’d buy my soon-to-be niece [via my wonderful cuzzie & cuzzie-in-law!] these adorable, hilarious, over-the-top extravagant things. Because every baby needs some skinny Seven’s to tuck into a pair of miniature Frye boots, right?! The tiny things they make for the babes seriously kill me, especially the shoes. Oh, the shoes.

1. Primigi Kids Maglioncino Sweater [$41]

2. Frye Harness Bootie [$38]

3. 7 for All Mankind The Skinny Denim Leggings [$59]

4. Bonpoint Cardigan Milky White [$145]

5. Burberry Gathered Check Cotton Dress [$165]

6. TOMS Tiny Canvas [$29]

7. Tod’s Baby Gommini Shoes [$165]

8. Lili Gaufrette Infant’s Tulle Skirt [$79]

9. Petit Bateau Rain Coat [$116]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Today is my brother Evan’s birthday! Here he is. Happy birthday Evan!

 

I also want to highlight a wonderful campaign by SEE, my fave fave fave optical boutique. For each Monday in September, SEE will donate a portion of all proceeds to the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund. In an effort to raise awareness for this often “silent” disease, they will be distributing free ovarian cancer education kits in each store. They’re also selling exclusive t-shirts and teal bracelets [the official color of o.c.] with all proceeds going directly to OCRF.

SEE has 25 stores nationwide, for a complete list of locations click here. There are only [2] more Mondays in September so stop into SEE and purchase a pair of prescription or non-prescription eyeglasses or sunglasses today!

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Love is in the air and, given the barrage of red and pink that’s taken over your local drug store, it’s no secret that Valentine’s Day is around the corner. Some people take the jaded route and scoff at the day, writing it off as a cunning Hallmark scheme, but I’ve always had an unabashed love for the holiday. I love it for the obvious reasons: a sweet card [not always from Hallmark], beautiful flowers, and a romantic dinner with my main squeeze ~ but it doesn’t stop there. My parents always showered us with love on Valentine’s Day and gave us a little something to make the day special [usually a book and candy]. They taught us that it was a day to show your appreciation for the ones you love, be it your family, friends, or significant other. To me it’s a day to be happy and celebrate all the different kinds of love you have in your life.

These are some pretty things that have Valentine’s Day written all over them.

1. Steve Madden Partyy Pump in Fuchsia [$89.95] *helloo date night

2. Ark & Co Elegant Pearl Cocktail Dress [$58] *the pearl details and peak-a-boo back are exquisite

3. Lancôme Juicy Tubes Lip Gloss Set [$29.50] *the original lip gloss

4. Deborah Lippmann Nail Color in Ruby Red Slippers [$18] *va~voom!

5. Michael Kors Watch in Rose Gold [$250] *exudes a strong + feminine air

6. Halston Heritage Deep V Cocktail Dress [$325] *effortless style

7. Schwartz Marshmallow Heart ~ Vanilla with Caramel Bottom [$67.50] *my cousin who lives in New York bought these once for my mom and dad – oh.my.gosh… although the price tag seems steep these are the most delicious, mouth-watering treats + are perfect for a special occasion. my mom got me a box last year for valentine’s day and i about died when i opened the box. {yummmm}

8. Prada Satin Wristlet [$360] *prada is pretty in pink

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Experts are saying 2011 is finally the year America will experience an economic revival and once again have a healthy, robust economy.  Until then, it’s a budget-savvy babe’s duty to see where her hard-earned green is going. Plus, this is the time of year when retailer’s slash prices the most, which means everyone from Gucci to Gap is offering goods at low, low prices. Here are some of my “cents-ible” picks [wink] that will save you some serious dough.

1. Calvin Klein Funnel Collar Double Breasted Coat [$380 $189.99]

2. New Balance for Nine West Cyber [$89 $62.30]

3. Banana Republic Beardsley Ring [$49.50 $24.99]

4. Gucci Driving Gloves [$370 $247]

5. Bird by Juicy Couture High Waisted Shorts [$258 $77.40]

6. Halston Clutch [$245 $121.90]

7. J.Crew Metallic Suede MacAlister Boots [$145 $79.99]

8. Ann Taylor Silk Scoop Neck Dress [$215 $89.88]

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My love affair with bags began in grade school. Case in point, my favorite part of back-to-school shopping wasn’t the new pencils or even new shoes [although that was a close second], no, it was the part where I picked out a new backpack. My parents couldn’t understand why I was so fixated by backpacks. In their eyes it was just a sack you store your books in, but to me it was oh-so much more. I campaigned for a fugly black leather backpack one year, a hunter green L.L. Bean another, an embroidered Notre Dame one, and when North Face first came out with pink backpacks you bet I was all over it… *sigh* I could go on. This isn’t normal, right? I’m certain experts would classify this as early-onset purse addiction.

My parents supported my obsession reluctantly but willingly. They saw my love for school accessories and assumed it translated into a love for schoolwork… and there was definitely some truth in that. In eighth grade my mom finally put her foot down and said, no more, and I begrudgingly obliged… but like an unstoppable rebel force [thank you meet the parents] my childhood addiction found it’s grownup counterpart: the purse.

From clutches to cross-bodies to carryalls, the right bag can transform an outfit from casually cool to seriously chic. The only problem? Choosing which essentials make the cut from purse to purse. Here are the eight staples that I toss in my tote each time I switch it up.

1. this ralph lauren ralph girl rollerball [$18] is the only perfume I wear. it’s perfect for a quick swipe when you’re running out the door and the delicious fragrance is subtle yet feminine.

2. rosebud salve [$8] this little compact is worth it’s weight in gold. you can use it for everything, from dry skin to blisters, and i’ve had the same tub for three years! bonus, this everyday balm has a light rose scent.

3. mary kay timewise age-fighting eye cream [$26] i love how silky smooth this light cream goes on. it’s barely-there texture is surprisingly moisturizing. your eyes will thank you after a long night on the town.

4. tide to go [$13.50 for a pack of 6] portable stain remover, enough said.

5. neutrogena hand cream [$4.50] i slather this on my hands as often as i remember, not only because it feels like a mini massage, but it’s über-important to take care of your hands. did you know the skin on your hands ages quicker than on your face -and- hands are exposed to the elements more than any other part of your body? keep those babies moisturized.

6. ipod nano [5th generation, $120] always and forever an apple girl, i love how sleek this little gadget looks and feels. it’s about the size of two credit cards stuck together, holds all my music, and has a radio. love.

7. band-aid friction block [$7.50] enter the lifesaver in a stick: it prevents blisters and enables allover happiness. i no longer need to tote around band-aids when my poor heels fall victim to my sky-high stilettos.

8. mor body souffle in sorbet [$24] this australian based cosmetics company makes perfectly luxurious body lotion with a soft coconut scent.

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