Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Check (Stock) Baby Check Baby (and an OOTD)

Hello all, and happy Monday...I mean, Tuesday!

...well, late Tuesday. Almost Wednesday!

I hope you all had a nice and relaxing weekend!

Several of you asked me over the weekend how to check stock online at Anthro, so I asked my beautiful size twin Sara of You, Me & Anthropologie and she graciously gave me permission to share her helpful tip.

Of course, I can't find the post where she shared her tip anymore...so I'll have to do my best to try and explain it. Haha! ^_-

So here goes!

How to check stock online at Anthro:

Personally, I start off by adding 1 (one) of the desired item to my shopping bag. From there, I click "shopping bag" as if to check out. In the shopping bag screen, I change the quantity from 1 to 99 and hit "update." If the system lets you add 99 to your cart, then chances are pretty good that there's plenty of stock of your item. If there's anything less than 99 in stock, the shopping cart will show you exactly how many they have in stock.

Another approach is to add 99 to your shopping bag straight from the item screen. However, if there aren't 99 of the item in stock, then it won't let you add the item to your shopping bag at all.

So there you go! I think that about covers it? Hope that helps!

So, onto my outfit...

Welp. I have a confession. I am a serial outfit repeater.

I can't help it, really. If I happen to come up with a selection of items that combine to make a nice outfit, I can't help but recycle it. I try not to do it too often; however, it makes for fairly boring OOTD posts when I do end up repeating. So I only tend to post the outfits I haven't already posted before. Which, of course, cuts down on the number of my posts.

Today's OOTD was actually one of my favorite outfits from about the turn of the century. I'm not kidding - I've had these pieces in my closet forever. I've always liked this outfit, and I've never photographed it for the blog, so I decided to trot it out for kicks.

Banana Republic Non-iron Fitted Sateen Shirt (buy this year's version here)
Club Monaco Pleated Skirt (similar-ish here and here)
White House Black Market Patent Belt (similar here)
Zara D'Orsay Pumps (splurge-y versions here, here and here!)
Betsey Johnson Earrings (similar here)

Did we all score some nice Memorial Day deals? I may or may not have picked up a few of my wishlist items. Maybe. ^_-

Well, Wednesday...it begins. The Stanley Cup Finals. I was so happy to hear from so many Anthro-loving hockey fans out there! I have to say, seeing and hearing how much this all means to Canucks fans in Vancouver makes it that much easier for me to root for them. I've heard they moved a Supertramp concert to accommodate Game 1 (I'm also told that Canadians looove Supertramp, so this is no small thing!), and a food chain has changed its name from "Boston Pizza" to "Vancouver Pizza" for the duration of the Finals. With all the hoopla, who knows...I may eventually even soften my stance on Raffi Torres, haha. Vancouver has waited a verrrrry long time for this moment...I hope the Canucks pull through!

Go Canucks go!

As always, thanks so much for reading!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Refined Gold (OOTD)

Yesterday morning dawned cool and crisp, with soft clouds scattered across the blue sky. There was a chill in the air that made the day feel more like late winter to me, than late spring, so I pulled out my new Neo-Refinement Pullover (purchased on its 3rd cut at the Tag Sale a couple weeks back), and wore it layered for a little bit of extra warmth.

It's a fantastic sweater, and I love it. It shifts and moves and changes shape all day long, and while with most garments, that would be a bad thing, it turns out that it's what makes this particular sweater so great. I can't wait until it gets warm enough to wear it without all the extra layers (c'mon San Diego - May's almost up! Let's get closer to the mid-to-high 70s, shall we? Please?) and paired with skirts and even shorts on the weekends. Though, I have to admit, I actually love it like this too, with the long sleeved tee layered underneath, flare leg jeans, and platform heels:

 Sweater: Neo-Refinement Pullover (similar here and here)
T-shirt: Pure and Good Basic Scoopneck (similar here and here)
Necklace: gifted from in-laws (similar here and here)

Here in the United States, it's Memorial Day, and in recognition of the many different warfronts in which the U.S. is currently engaged, and the many lives that have been lost in those places in recent years, I'd like to just take a quick moment, and remember with gratitude and sorrow, the brave lives lost as well as their families who have had to struggle on without them. 

Thank you for reading!

Friday, May 27, 2011

The Devil Wears Prada (Okay, Not Really - More Like, "The Kathryn Wears Anthro") (OOTD)

Hello and Happy Memorial Day Weekend!

Whew! I'm so happy it's the weekend! And it's a holiday weekend! So, yay for long weekends!

Anybody have any fun plans? I know I do - I get to go to work!

Which...basically...means....my weekend is kind of...non-existent.



Well, it is what it is. And I don't mind working now if it means I get to vacation later. And it's looking very likely that I will be vacationing in Vancouver for Canada Day.

*happy dance!*

So, I'll just count my blessings and go to work like the good little girl I am.

As I may have mentioned once or twice or many a time, I don't have an original bone in my body. And when I first saw "The Devil Wears Prada" a few years ago, I gasped over Anne Hathaway's gorgeous movie wardrobe like every other red-blooded female on the planet. That white coat with the newsboy cap. The green coat with the furry collar. The dresses in Paris. And on and on.

And let's not forget the bangs. Oh, those bangs!

Anyway, this ensemble from the movie has been burned in my brain for years:

I never did track down this cotton voile Calvin Klein dress, so when I spied the Pezza Dress in green back in February, I was instantly smitten. I feel like I've been trying to recreate this look for years; and besides, I'm a sucker for jersey dresses.

It was quite an adventure tracking this little dress down. The minute it went on sale on Tag Sale Day, I did the little stock-check trick online that I learned from Sara of You, Me and Anthropologie, and I saw that stock was dwindling (and by "dwindling," I mean it went down from 99 to 69 in a quick clickety-click) so I went ahead and ordered it. I thought all was well...until two days later when I received an email from Anthro letting me know my order had been cancelled.

It took a bit, but I finally tracked the dress down in a store that shall remain nameless. Interestingly enough, she had just pulled the Pezza in the same size and color for another customer who also happened to live in Southern California and who also had her order cancelled by CS. Strange. I grew even more concerned when the sales associate jotted down my address and read it back to me with a few transposed letters and numbers.

I basically had no faith whatsoever that I would ever receive my dress.

But sure enough, it arrived. And all was well, after my husband stopped glaring at me once I explained I had a giftcard for it.

So here, at long last, was my interpretation of that outfit - throwing a cardigan on top when it turned out to be a little nippy in the morning:

Anthropologie Pezza Dress
(on sale now, call CS for stores and cross your fingers, or try this one)
Nordstrom BP Cardi by Susina (from the Anniversary Sale in...2009? similar here and here)
Oh, Hello Friend Eiffel Tower Brooch
Oh, Hello Friend Bicycle Necklace
House of Plum Red Belt
Matrushka Construction Earrings
Jessica Simpson "Oscar" Patent Pumps (similar here)

And here's me, without the cardigan, trying (rather pathetically) to reenact the scene from the movie:

(adding a pair of Coach sunglasses, for effect...similar pair here)
(...and, drat! I had a bangle bracelet [like this] but I forgot to put it on!)

...yes, I know. I'm a dork. You don't need to tell me twice. ^_-

I still can't believe I ordered my dress when it seemed like there were plenty in stock, only to Linkhave my order pulled out from under my feet a couple of days later. Did any of you have these kinds of issues with the Tag Sale?

Well, because I wouldn't be me if I didn't leave off with something hockey -elated, I want to congratulate the Boston Bruins for making the Stanley Cup Finals. It's their first trip to the big dance in over twenty years (though they have not won a championship since the early 70s), and they'll be going up against the aforementioned Vancouver Canucks. So it's a team that hasn't won the Stanley Cup since 1972 versus a team that's never won the Stanley Cup.

Either way, history will be made.

I still haven't the heart to change the wallpaper on my phone though:

(yep, that's Joe Thornton again.)

*sigh* I love you, Joe. You played like a warrior and did everything in your power to win. If you were my guilty crush before, you're my not-so-secret love affair now. You have the heart of a champion. I hope the surgery to fix your finger went well and that your shoulder heals nicely.

As always, thanks so much for reading, and I hope you have a fabulous weekend!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

We Are All...Canucks? (Quick OOTD and another video)

Happy Thursday, Everyone!

I hope you're all doing well!

Well - it's official. The Vancouver Canucks are going to the Stanley Cup Finals.

Of course, what that means is, my Jumbo Joe and his San Jose Sharks have now been eliminated. Which hurts my heart. Because, as previously discussed, I love Joe.

But I don't want to dwell on that too much! Instead, I want to congratulate the Vancouver Canucks on making the Finals!

(...everyone except Raffi Torres, that is.)

(I can't stand that guy.)

So today's OOTD was actually inspired in part by the Canucks, as I decided to use their team colors as my base - blue and green. Which really helped out, because let's face it - I often wake up in the morning with no idea what to wear, and it's nice to be inspired by something.

Apologies for looking away. I'm feeling shy today.

Anthropologie Beda Dress (Spring 2010, similar shape and cut here, another nice option here)
Anthropologie Blooming Lattice Cardigan (Spring 2010, similar here)
White House Black Market Patent Belt (similar here)

Not the most exciting outfit ever, but I still love wearing my Beda Dress to this day, and I'm super glad I bought it when it came out last year!

So, seeing as how the Canucks have advanced another round, I figured I'd share the latest video by the masterminds behind the "Game Day" video that I linked a few weeks back. I find it extremely endearing that these talented and funny guys love their team so much that they express it by writing parodies of songs originally made famous by female pop stars. *chuckles* That said, their passion is something I feel like I can relate to as a fan, and it's something that makes me smile.

I hope it makes you smile too. ^_^

...though I reeeeally feel like I must emphasize again, Canadians are nuts.

A quick look at the weather app on my iPhone may shed some light as to why some Canadians (well, the ones from Vancouver, anyway) might be slightly crazy:

(shown in Celsius, for full effect)

I know Vancouver's not the only place in the world where it rains so much but...wow. It's May, and one of my husband's friends in Vancouver said it's still snowing in some parts.

So, given the circumstances, it's good to see they find constructive ways to pass the time indoors. ^_-

I suppose, then, that this is my not-so-official way of saying that...*gulp*...I'm rooting for the (gah) Canucks from here on out. *grits teeth* But...seriously, I do hope the Canucks go all the way. It would be their first championship in their 40-year existence as a franchise, and the first time a Canadian team has won the Stanley Cup in 18 years. And to echo what Bud Greenspan said in his lovely documentary of the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver, "Hockey is Canada's game."

Best of luck to all the Canucks. Except Raffi Torres.

Have any of you been tuning into the playoffs? What team are you rooting for to win?

As always, thanks so much for reading! Don't forget to RSVP to Carol at carol.prettythings [at] gmail.com to let us know if you'll be joining us for our Anthropologie Shopping Event! We'd love to meet you!

Have a wonderful day!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Soon To Be Summer (Wishlist & Anthro Event Updates)

Halllloooooo friends! It's that time, again! Kathryn and I realized that it'd been a while since we updated our wishlists, and really, it's nearly summer. Can you believe it? There's only seven more days left in May, and then, bam! It's June! And summer solstice or no summer solstice, once it's June, I count that as summer-time! (You hear that, San Diego? Summer Time. That means no more of this chilly, temps-in-the-60s nonsense!)

And a new season means new fashion needs. *clears throat* Mmm...okay, so "needs" is a term I'm applying loosely here. No matter! One can wish and one can list, so let's proceed, onward and upwards!

Not to mention that our Anthropologie Shopping Event is fast approaching, so, it's good to have our wardrobe-wants in order, don't you think? Speaking of, we've determined a time for the event - it's going to be Sunday, June 12th, from 5 PM - 7 PM. Because of the dinner hour, we'd like to invite any of you who are available to attend and then stick around, to come out to dinner with us (meaning me, Kathryn, and Maya) at one of the nearby eateries. If you're coming to the event, please RSVP to my email address: carol.prettythings [at] gmail.com, to confirm your attendance - even if you've already told me you'll come in the comments of a post. It'll help us plan for refreshments and other fun, at the event. When you RSVP, please let me know if you're going to stay for dinner too. We are so excited and can't wait to meet you! It's going to be such fun!

Oh, and for those of you with little ones, it's okay to bring them with you. I've had a couple inquiries about that already. Heaven knows I take my kiddos shopping at Anthropologie all the time, and while I've drafted my husband to keep an eye on them during the shopping event itself (the better to co-host the event), they'll be joining us for dinner, so if you can't find childcare, no worries! Bring them along and RSVP to let us know they're coming, so we can include them in our counts for snacks. (Snacks are key. ^_-)

Okay, on to the lists of wishes (if one's being strictly honest here):

Carol's Full-Priced List
1. Mompos Dress (under consideration for a wedding I'm attending)
2. Overwhelmed Aster Dress (also under consideration for same wedding)
3. Kate Spade Two by Two Dana Dress (pricey, but I love the print! Giraffes! Walking two by two!)
4. Kate Spade Daycation Wallet (my next wallet. LOVE.)

Carol's Sale-Priced List
1. Take Action Dress (because I pretend I could do without it, but I'd probably cry if it passed me by. Hmm, should I also consider this one for the wedding?)2. Gull Wing Dress (in plum, or black and white. Can't decide!)
3. Mompos Dress (pretty enough to consider at sale time, if I don't choose it for the wedding)
4. Readymade Dress (cute, comfy, and fun! Fitting room review coming soon!)
5. Bette Cardigan (in orange)

Carol's List of Things She Already Has (and needs to remember when wanting new things)
1. Apothecary Skirt
2. Tombolo Dress
3. Sugar Work Skirt
4. Inkwell Skirt
5. Thakoon for Target Printed Tie-Waist Dress
6. Tracy Feith for Target White Strappy Dress
7. Pom Flower Shift Dress

Yep, quite a lot of things. Too many things. Must close my eyes tightly when next walking through the mall...or browsing online (eep!).

Hi everyone! Long time, no talk! I hope you're all well!

Can you believe it's almost the end of May? I don't know where the time went!

...okay, that's a lie. I've (still) been occupied with playoff hockey. It's the strangest thing, even though my own team was eliminated a few weeks ago, I've found myself quietly cheering for Joe Thornton (also known as "Jumbo Joe"), the captain of the rival San Jose Sharks. I've always had a soft spot in my heart for him, but you may remember I got to meet Joe for the first time back in late January at a charity function. He was just so genuinely
so nice and kind that I ended up falling head over heels in love with him. Not in a "I wanna marry him!" sort of way...but more in a "I want to be his best friend!" type of way, if you know what I mean.

I'm not really sure how it happened. I guess you can never really help who you fall in love with.

The tough thing, of course, is that the Sharks are a division rival of my Ducks. So, I've been trying to figure out if there's some miraculous way I can cheer for a player
without actively cheering for the team he plays for.

It's a problem.

So the Sharks are now in the Western Conference Finals, and they're playing the league's best team from the regular season, the Vancouver Canucks. Joe's played extremely well; however, the Canucks lead the best-of-seven series at three games to one.


(From last January - me, with Joe Thornton, who had been high-sticked in the eye by Vancouver Canucks player Alex Burrows a few days before. Burrows was not penalized on the play. Grr.)

He really is just the sweetest guy I've ever met...right up there with Teemu Selanne, really.

(Interestingly, San Jose Sharks defenseman Dan Boyle actually punched Canucks forward Ryan Kesler in the face during overtime of that game back in January....and at the end of Game 4 on Sunday, Sharks forward Ryane Clowe also punched Kesler in the face. So I guess it's nice to see the Sharks kept up the tradition of punching that guy in the face.)


Why don't I
ever shut up about hockey?!

Okay, so...here are the non-hockey related items in my life that I'm currently obsessed with:

Kathryn's Full-Priced List
1. Ivanka Trump Asteria Sandal (sparkly shoes for a trip to Vegas I'm taking next month!)
2. Gull Wing Dress (in black and white colorway = POLKA DOTS! and possibly FP-worthy)
3. AG Farrah Jeans (I need to get on this flare-leg jean trend STAT!...these COH flares look cute, too!) ...yeah, strike those. I finally tried them both on and didn't love either pair. the Farrahs were incredibly unflattering on me in the uh...well, there's no other way to say it: they gave me mad "CT." (please don't make me say it.) And as for the COHs, they didn't wow me. But I still want flare leg jeans; and, oddly enough, the pair that I find myself liking most are this pair from LinkAmerican Eagle, though I wouldn't mind trying this pair from the Gap.
4. Andamento Scarf (sparkly, neutral-y, blush-ish colored fun!)
5. Steve Madden Brennaa Sandals (because they're pink - my signature color! *wink*)

...and, a possible item I might pick up, for said Las Vegas outing:

6. Simone Rhinestone Dress (very different from what I'd normally wear, and I'm not sure I can actually pull it off...however Vegas seems to lend itself more to shorter and more fitted types of dresses...)

Kathryn's Sale-Priced List
1. Apothecary Skirt (high potential for this one to climb to the full-price list)
2. Neo-Refinement Pullover (tried this on a whim and fell in LOVE...candidate for FP list!)
3. Mompos Dress (lacey details, poofy skirt - what's not to love??)
4. Shine Through Dress (I am positively fascinated with the idea of this dress, but it's $$$)
5. Cape Tee (fascinated by this too, because of this outfit)

Kathryn's List of Things She Already Has (and needs to remember when wanting new things)
1. Take Action Dress (birthday present from husband - woohoo!)
2. Pezza Dress (snagged at the T-t-t-ag Sale...hopefully. If CS decides to fulfill the order...)
Link3. Tracy Feith for Target White Strappy Dress
4. Tucker for Target Button Front Dress
5. Rodarte for Target Lace-Print Dress
6. Sun Shades Dress
7. D'armee Dress
8. High-Gloss Belt in Pink

So, thanks so much for hanging in there with my seemingly nonstop hockey-talk. I'll be keeping good thoughts that my Jumbo Joe can pull through, but if he can't...well I guess I wouldn't mind seeing a Canadian team like the Canucks go for the Cup.

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

When All Else Fails (OOTD)

Happy Monday, everyone! Hope you all had a good weekend. As everyone seems to have noticed, we're more or less all still here, with no natural disasters outside the standard sort in sight, so...I guess we've got a little more time to shore up our credentials for the next time someone thinks the end's in sight? Meanwhile, I hope no one was too let down. I hear there were some last-night-of-the-world parties though. Anyone go to one? (I have small children. I live vicariously through your stories of having a social life.)

I picked up the Inkwell Skirt at last week's Tag Sale for a fantastic $19.99 - I was more than thrilled, as I'd been eyeing it ever since it first hit sale a few weeks back, but had told myself I wasn't allowed to spend $40 or more on a skirt I hadn't even noticed until it hit the sale rack. But c'mon. $20? I can't do better at Target! It's a full, poofy-ish cotton skirt with pockets, a non-elastic waist, and I ended up getting it in size 2, for comfort. 

I'll say this probably isn't the most inspiring outfit I've ever put together, but it was comfy and the whole thing is machine washable (excepting the shoes and belt), which was great, since that makes it more-or-less kid-proof.

 Top: Raining Lines Henley, Anthropologie (similar here and here)
Skirt: Inkwell Skirt, Anthropologie (may still be available in stores; similar here and here)
Belt: Forest Creature Belt, Anthropologie
Shoes: Ruffled Pewter Flats, Me Too (similar here and so cute! here)

 So, I hadn't done a book review/recommendation in a while, and the other day, my husband mentioned it in passing. Seeing as how I had to snap my OOTD indoors today, I decided to take advantage of my book collection's proximity, and share one with you - particularly for anyone who might have been more than disappointed by the failed Rapture, this past Saturday:

The Savvy Convert's Guide to Choosing a Religion

Here's a detail shot of what the religious descriptions look like (i.e. Do Not Fear, Oh Ye Haters of Dense and Academic Writing):

Have a great day and thanks for reading!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

An Anthro Primer (OOTD)

While contemplating what to title this post, I decided to look up the word "Tombolo," as, well...that's what the fine folks at Anthro named the dress I'm wearing in this outfit (the one way way way down at the bottom of this very wordy post). Turns out, it's an island or islands that are tied together with (a) narrow bar(s) of land.

Well, okay then. I guess that makes more sense than last year's "Insouciant Tank" (to which we're to infer an indifference to what exactly? Yeah, iono either...)

This led me to further consider Anthro's love of giving their products obscure and somewhat (to me) cryptic names, which on the most part, I just ignore. But having started thinking about it, I looked up a few more names of current items (which I've listed below, for your edification and entertainment). And this led me to wonder, "Who's naming this stuff? And why?" Which then, of course, led me to remember that as an Anthropologie customer, I'm supposed to be either flattered and/or amused by the obscure references to geography, geology, botany, and so forth. I'm sure some, if not many of you, have come across this Fast Company article about Anthropologie's business strategies, that describes with uncanny precision, who exactly the Anthropologie customer is:

Ask anyone at Anthropologie who that customer is, and they can rattle off a demographic profile: 30 to 45 years old, college or post-graduate education, married with kids or in a committed relationship, professional or ex-professional, annual household income of $150,000 to $200,000. But those dry matters of fact don't suffice to flesh out the living, breathing woman most Anthropologists call "our friend." Senk, 46, says, "I like to describe her in psychographic terms. She's well-read and well-traveled. She is very aware -- she gets our references, whether it's to a town in Europe or to a book or a movie. She's urban minded. She's into cooking, gardening, and wine. She has a natural curiosity about the world. She's relatively fit."
The Anthropologie customer is affluent but not materialistic. She's focused on building a nest but hankers for exotic travel. (She can picture herself roughing it with a backpack and Eurail pass -- as long as there is a massage and room service at end of the trek.) She'd like to be a domestic goddess but has no problem cutting corners (she prefers the luscious excess of British cooking sensation Nigella Lawson to the measured perfection of Martha Stewart). She's in tune with trends, but she's a confident individualist when it comes to style. She lives in the suburbs but would never consider herself a suburbanite.
The Anthropologie woman is not so much conflicted as she is resistant to categorization. Her identity is a tangle of connections to activities, places, interests, values, and aspirations. She's not married with two kids: She's a yoga-practicing filmmaker with an organic garden, a collection of antique musical instruments, and an abiding interest in Chinese culture (plus a husband and two kids). 

Mmhm. Anyone else find that a little...creepy? I don't know about you, but I sorta hate that they're trying to (and half-succeeding at) pigeon-holing me like this.

Which, uh, would also fit the profile, because there's that line there, that says I'm "not so much conflicted as resistant to categorization." 

*roll of the eyes* 

By the way, I don't practice yoga, make films, garden (Have you seen my backyard? No? Phew!), have a collection of antique musical instruments (unless you're counting a few from my husband's childhood: a violin, his trumpet from his high school band days, an old electric keyboard, which the kids enjoy banging on, and a couple of harmonicas and a tambourine. Hm, and in that case, they'd be more his collection of antique instruments, not mine), or an abiding interest in Chinese culture (notwithstanding the fact that I married into a Chinese-American family, and have half-Chinese offspring as a result). 

Oh, and I like the idea of wine, more than the reality of wine.Which is a little embarrassing to admit, but it is what it is.

And, while I sometimes catch some of Anthro's references in the names of their products (I do listen to NPR, after all), I don't recognize all of them. Therefore, I've taken the opportunity to exercise my "natural curiosity about the world," and look up some of these *slightly obnoxious* *cough-cough* *pretentious* *clears throat*  references that I'm supposed to be keyed into.

And since I'm the sort who likes to share (What? That's not in their profile? Well, geez, what's that about?) here are some of the terms/references I looked up (thank you, Wikipedia) on some of the dresses currently found in their catalog:

Vela Luka Dress: Vela Luka is a small town in southern Dalmatia, Croatia. It's located on the western side of the island of Korcula, and the locals often refer to it simply as "Luka." It's home to Vela Spila, possibly one of the most important prehistoric cave dwellings in Europe, with carbon dated signs of human activity going back nearly 20,000 years.

Vokko Dress: Vokko (also spelled Voko) is a "populated place"/town in upper east Ghana. I could tell you the longitude and latitude coordinates for it, but that's really about it. Not much going on there, apparently. Or, maybe Anthro was referring to the Vokko that's a type of vocoder (short for voice encoder; an analysis/synthesis system mostly used for speech) capable of processing stereo signals. Hmm...I don't know about you, but my bet's on Ghana.

Muhabura Tank Dress: Muhabura - or Mount Muhabura -  is the name of an extinct volcano that's part of the Virunga Mountain Range that lies between Uganda and Rwanda. If you approach it from the Ugandan side (and are "relatively fit," as the Anthro customer profile suggests), it should only take you about a day to climb.

Quechua Dress: Quechua is the name of an Andean people of South America and their languages. It also refers to a region of Peru.

Ikinimba Dress: Ikinimba is a musical tradition of Rwanda, which tells the stories of its Rwandan heroes and kings.

Mompos Dress: Mompos, or officially, "Santa Cruz de Mompox," is a town in northern Colombia. It's known for its preservation of colonial architectural features, many of the which buildings are still being used for their original purposes. Provides an excellent example of a Spanish Colonial city. 

Sangatte Slip Dress: Sangatte is a commune in the Pas-de-Calais department on the northern coast of France, fronting the British Channel. The French cooling station for the Channel Tunnel is located there. It's also the former location of a now defunct (and somewhat controversial) refugee camp, which was closed down by Nicolas Sarcozy in 2002, after rioting in 2001. And for you (British, original, and vastly superior version) Top Gear fans, this is where Jeremy, Richard, and James ended up, when they attempted to cross the Channel in an amphibious Nissan Hardbody (they missed their intended Calais landing - I remember that episode, though I didn't remember the name "Sangatte.")

Cuernavaca Maxi: Cuernavaca is the capitol city of the state of Morelos in Mexico. A favorite vacationing spot of residents of Mexico City and foreign visitors due to its warm, stable climate and abundant vegetation. Once upon a time, Aztec emperors liked to maintain summer residences there. 

Sweater: Gifted by my mom, from a trip to South Korea (similar here and here)
Dress: Tombolo Dress (see start of post for meaning of Tombolo)
Necklace: Idesia (a medium-sized, deciduous flowering tree, native to eastern Asia) Necklace, Anthropologie (similar here and here and here)
Belt: Snakebite Belt, Anthropologie (similar here and here)
Shoes: Givenchy Platform Clog Sandals (hidden by the long skirt)

There. Now we can all smile smugly together, and nod when we're admiring the Muhabura Tank Dress in store. Because I like it a whole lot more now that I know it's named after an extinct volcano. ^_-

Friday, May 20, 2011

Odds and Ends (Anthropologie Fitting Room Reviews)

Hi everyone! Happy Friday!!! This week felt extraordinarily long to me, replete with lots of work, early mornings, school drop-off meltdowns, and head colds. Oh, and on top of it, it's been rainy, cool, and overcast here all week. I see that the sun is out this morning, but that's cold comfort, when I'm not entirely convinced it's warm enough to wear any of my warm-weather finds from the Tag Sale yet. We'll see, we'll see....

Gosh, I'm glad it's Friday.

So, over the past few weeks, I've been collecting some photos from the fitting room, which I'm finally sorting through and sharing with you. 

The Skewed Pullover is one of two printed versions of the Neo-Refinement Pullover, which I recently picked up on a 3rd (!!!) cut, at the tag sale. I'm wearing size Small (there is no XS available) and while the polka dots on this one is definitely cute, I noticed that the ivory background is a teeny bit sheer - in the upper left hand photo, you can see where the waist of my jeans start, through the sweater - which I don't like at all. There's not much more to say about this, except that I think I'm glad I got the solid version instead, as it seems more versatile to me (easier to match to bottoms). For a more vibrantly colored print, check out the Orchard Grove Pullover. These sweaters are a cotton blend and are hand-wash only.

She Sells Tank:

I'm wearing the She Sells Tank in a size 0. As soon as I saw this one pop up online, I was intrigued by it, and I have to say, I love the name, playing off the classic tongue-twister. This is the kind of cornball-clever humor that makes me grin every time. The fit of this top was good - I appreciate that the neckline doesn't scoop too low, as some of Anthro's scooped tops can do on smaller-framed me. Still, once it was on me, I don't know if I loved it. For some reason, I'm not sure if the print was really working for me. Otherwise, I have no complaints. This top is made of a cotton-spandex blend, is machine-washable, and has functioning buttons down the front. Also, there's an attached sash that can be tied in the front as shown above, or behind, if you so desire. Wishlisted for consideration at sale-time.

Backswept Dress:

Here's the much-buzzed about Backswept Dress, by Corey Lynn Calter, which I believe I tried on in a 0.  The fit of the bodice and waist was good overall, but the skirt was a touch long, and the cut of the shoulders made me look like it was too big on me, I thought. I don't know...when I first saw the dress on one of the store's dress forms, I couldn't take my eyes off of it - the striking colors, oversized print, and classic shape should have made it a knock-out. But I think the fact is, I felt like it all served to overwhelm my petite frame. I rather expect that taller women will be stunning in this dress, but maybe shorter women should approach with caution. There's also the matter of the cut-out, tie-back element on the back of the dress (sorry about the blurriness):

This is really cute for a summer garden party, outdoor wedding, barbecue, or any other appropriate warm-weather event. But the fact that you have to create this little knot on the back of the dress means it will create an odd bump in the back the second you try to put a cardigan or other topper (with maybe the exception of a shawl or wrap) over this - which makes it harder to wear in cooler temperatures. I think, sadly, this will be a pass for me. 

Overwhelmed Aster Dress:

I tried on the Overwhelmed Aster Dress in a size 0, and I really loved it! What a perfectly darling party dress! There's a great tulle underskirt that lends the skirt its shape and on the bodice, there are little cut-out appliques of the same flowers that make up the lace-like fabric of the dress. There's not a whole lot to criticize here aside from the skirt being a touch long on me, hitting right below my knee, and that it's not terribly versatile - I can't really see myself wearing this in a more day-to-day setting. However, if you have weddings, bridal showers, or parties of any sort to attend, this is a fantastic dress. I have a wedding coming up myself, so it's on my list of candidates.

Villa Mysteriis Top:

The soft colors and easy shape of the Villa Mysteriis Top caught my eye, so I picked it up on my way to the fitting room. I've got it on in the size 0, and as you can see, it's got a looser fit which would be great during the hotter temperatures of summer, except for one thing - this top is not cotton, as you might expect, but rayon, and marked as dry-clean only to boot! There are three narrow, horizontal pleats that sit at the top of the bust, which are also oddly distracting - every time I glance at the photo, I keep wondering if the shirt's riding up a little, which is bad, since it's not. I don't know. I think the theory of this top was much better than its execution. Still, the colors and print might tempt me enough when it hits sale, for me to overlook its other flaws.

Summer Tartan Tank and Apothecary Skirt:

Here I am, trying out a bit of fitting-room print-mixing, with the Summer Tartan Tank (green version) and the Apothecary Skirt (blue motif). The Summer Tartan Tank is one that I wanted to try when I saw it show up online, and in these photos, I'm wearing the size XS. There's something very childlike about this top, and I think it's essentially the seam that runs above the bust, which simultaneously gives the shirt a very vintage (as in 1800s) look while also calling to mind the way little girl dresses are sometimes cut. I don't know. After trying this on, I'm ambivalent. I kinda like it. I kinda don't like it. I bet when it's on sale, I'll pick it up in spite of myself. This top is cotton, machine washable, and has a functional button closure down the front of the shirt. 

The skirt though, was another story altogether. I was on a serious shopping ban when the original winter iteration of the Apothecary Skirt appeared as an "Online Exclusive" on Anthro's website, so even though I really liked the look of it, I never pulled the trigger. So, when I saw this brighter spring version in the Fashion Valley B&M, I couldn't get it into the fitting room fast enough. And I LOVE it. I loved it so much, I totally impulse-purchased it that day and promptly wore it 3 times the following week. The wide, elasticized waistband closes with three snap buttons and provides a little support at the waist line. There are two large pockets positioned lower down the skirt, but with the elasticized tops, they hug the skirt, rather than hanging loosely open, adding volume, as similar pockets can. Love, love, love!

Hope you found these reviews helpful. Have a super Friday!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Carlsbad Anthropologie Fashion Show

So, how did everyone do at the Tag Sale at Anthropologie? It's really dreadful, because I was trying to be good and stick to the shopping ban challenge being hosted by Kim of Anthroholic, but I totally blew it today. One of the things I bought was the Tombolo Dress - something I never looked at twice until I went to the Carlsbad Anthro's Summer Fashion Show last Friday. I didn't even get a chance to try it on then, because all the small sizes were gone by the time I found it on the floor, and then, when I got a glance at the price tag, I winced. Lo and behold, it was on sale this morning, and while it was still pretty pricey (Twenty8Twelve), I feel like it was totally worth it, especially since I passed on the gorgeous (but painfully expensive) Winter Kate maxi dress I tried on a few months back.

Anyway, enough chatter about my sale-indulgences this morning. Let's get to some of the fun looks I saw at the Carlsbad Anthropologie Summer Fashion Show! (Oh, and let me apologize in advance for the inconsistent quality of the photos. Some were taken on my little point and shoot which was on a weird setting for a few of the photos (*groan*) and then some were taken on my iPhone, when my other camera's battery went kaput. Yep. I am that good a blogger. *very big sigh*

 This is just a cool feature wall in the section of the store where housewares are displayed. I thought the denim treatment was so interesting and fun! It looks almost like swaths of paint, doesn't it? Nicely done, Carlsbad Visuals staff!

 The seating area for guests, prior to the show. There were refreshments (wine! cheese! mini cupcakes!) and lots of new arrivals to peruse. I love the drum shades on the pendant lamps hanging from the ceiling. 

For you San Diego locals, let me introduce Fashion Valley Anthropologie's new Personal Shopper, Laura (above left, in the Horkelia Shift). I met her for the first time last Friday, at the Carlsbad event, where she was helping out. She was super helpful, really fun, and very nice. So if ever you need some help styling something, or picking out a look for an event, etc, don't be shy!

Of course, while I was there, I had to try on a couple of things myself!

I'm wearing Leifsdottir's Midsummer's Bloom Tank Dress in a size 2. The vivid colors and bright print caught my eye, and I decided to give it a go. It's got an interesting asymmetrical waist and hem - higher in the front, lower in the back - which gives the dress some shape, without actually structuring it. I thought it was fun - though I think I would need the size 0 - the 2 was a little big on me, scooping too low in the front (I'm posing very carefully, to keep from exposing myself). The dress is silk, has a pull-on styling, and is dry-clean only. I think I might consider it at sale time, though I think I could wait for a second cut (Leifsdottir is a bit dear, and while I like this dress, I don't love this dress).

Mariposa Tank and AG Tomboy Crops:

When the Mariposa Tank was modeled, I thought it was so cute, in a '50s pin-up sort of way, and imagined it would be a great versatile piece - I could wear it with jeans or shorts for weekends and vacation days, or with a cardi or blazer and slacks or skirt for a more work-appropriate look. I picked up a size 2, because the store was out of 0s, and tried it on. It was a teensy bit big from the front, but acceptable. But from the sides...*BIG SIGH*. Why are these shoulder straps so long? I wouldn't be surprised if there was a good extra 1.5"-2" on these, and I'd be surprised if the size 0's straps were much shorter. If I were to buy this top, I'd have to spend the money getting those straps shortened. So, while I really liked the top, I'm definitely not buying it at full price, and will even consider carefully at sale time. It's a bummer, because otherwise, it's so cute. It's cotton, with a smocked back and back-zipper, is machine washable, and covered with the sweetest butterfly print. 

The AG Tomboy Crops were a happy surprise. I'm wearing these in a size 25, and I love them. The only reason I didn't buy them right then and there is that my budget just wouldn't allow it. Shorter women will be glad to know that they still looked cropped on my 5' 2" frame (usually, "crops" and "capris" mean they hit at the ankle for me - these stopped a good 3" above my ankle without any adjustments - woohoo!). The store carried these in a darker wash (see on the model above) and also in the distressed version which I'm wearing. I'm not sure which I prefer, so if you have any thoughts, please share. I tend to be a little skittish about buying jeans that come with holes already in them, but I sort of liked the way this pair fit and looked. Either way, I'm definitely wishlisting these for sale time consideration.

Last but definitely not least, I ran into and spent some time shopping with a lovely reader, Barbara! Here she is, modeling the Whirligig Dress. Doesn't she look fantastic? Just an FYI, for those of you who may be interested in the fit of this dress, Barbara is also 5' 2", though her proportions are slightly different from mine - she's longer waisted than I am. I just love the color on her, and the fitted bodice and full skirt - divine!

Hope you enjoyed this glimpse into the Summer Fashion Show at the Carlsbad Anthro. Thanks for reading!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Checking-in (a Re-post)

So, for whatever reason, Blogger looks like its coughed back up most of the posts it ate a few days back, but it didn't replace ours. So, for the sake of posterity, we're re-posting our last post. And hopefully, I'll have a new post for you soon. Thanks for your patience, everyone!


Hi, everyone! How are you all doing? I feel like I've been away for a while - work has been requiring quite a lot of travel lately (lots and lots of driving to do fieldwork), and the husband just started a new job this week. I'm...tired, haha. And I apologize for my spotty attendance here, lately. I've been running on emergency reserves lately (yes, it's been like that), so there's been nothing left for the blog. Spring is always a high intensity period for education research - lots of end of the year data collection going on as well as grant-writing.

Summer will be here soon, right? Soon. Until then, *deep breath*.

I drove out to Orange County today for work and stopped by Kathryn's office on my return trip, to drop off a (very belated) birthday gift. While I was there, we decided to snap our OOTDs together. It's a two-for-one!

Kathryn's wearing:
Dress: Refined Corduroy Dress (similar here and here)
Belt: Oh Hello Friend belt (similar here and here)
Boots: Kachiri Boots, Target
Necklace: Oh Hello Friend Pocketwatch Necklace

Carol's wearing:
Dress: Southward Stop Dress
Sweater: Mossimo Boyfriend Cardigan, Target 
Belt: Mossimo Studded Leather Belt, Target (similar here and here)
Shoes: Rensselaer T-Straps, Miss Albright (similar here and here)
Necklace: Umbrella Necklace, Miss November Studio

Sanrio Wonder Twins powers, activate! 
(Kathryn wearing a My Melody ring, me wearing a Chococat ring)

I'm going to aim for getting my hair out of a pony tail tomorrow. I'm not a morning person, so am always running behind. That, in combination with my poor hair grooming skills, means that once I find out I can get my hair into a ponytail (no matter how ridiculously short and silly it might look) I'll often wear my hair that way, six out of seven days, just because it's a quick and convenient way to style it. I have found the best way to prevent myself from falling into the ponytail rut is to keep my hair too short to fit into one.

But I don't know...I've been wearing my hair pretty short for a couple years now, and may be ready to grow it out again. What does everyone think? Should I keep it short and bobbed - or short and not-bobbed? Or should I let it grow out? 

These are the things that keep me up at night. I know, I know. It's a heavy burden to bear. I do my best. (Note to self: get some sleep before writing up my next post...)