Living by Your Guiding Principles

Happy Monday Loves!

Maya Angelou said it best. “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

I’m feeling good about this blue and white striped elongated tunic by Tome. Made of 100% cotton and styled with a handkerchief hem, it’s a comfortable wear that put a smile on my face. With or without my jeans leggings, it’s another hit from Rent The Runway.

As the nation prepares to pay respects to two beloved treasures (Aretha Franklin and Senator John McCain), I am inspired by their guiding life principles of how they lived their lives and how they made people feel. One with the soul to inspire the femisist and civil rights movement. One with the soul to inspire patriotism and decency.

A new week is a renewed opportunity to center in on your guiding principles to ensure your legacy. Make it a good week!

Transitional Style with Fashion Show Inspiration

“When shifts and transitions in life shake you to the core, see that as a sign of greatness that’s about to occur.”

Facing the pending shift in seasons, I’m looking at some of my cherished summer pieces that would work into Fall looks.

So, these sateen ikat bright and colorful print crop pants from Chicos were one of my favorite pants this summer. They’re soft, comfortable, cute and versatile. I wore them with ivory, orange, blue and denim tops. The thought of putting them aside until next spring makes me sad, so I searched my closet to see what I could do to help them hang around a little longer.

Then, I remembered a look that captivated me back in February. I participated in the annual Off The Field Players’ Wives Association Annual Fashion Show that was held at the Galleria in Edina, Minnesota the Friday before the big Super Bowl 52 Football Game. (I’ll show you my look on another post). Our outfits were well appointed by Minneapolis’ style guru Grant Whittaker, who showcased merchandise from the local merchants.  They were fun, authentic and fabulous.

One of the models had on a casual ensemble that really spoke to me. Grant adorned her in blue and ivory paisley print pants, orange pullover top and tan jacket. He paired the outfit with an oversized colorful print bag and nude sandals. With all the hob knobbing going on that day, I made the cardinal error by not asking where the outfit could be purchased. I thought, oh that should be simple enough to put together.

Already equipped with the tan jacket and pullover orange top, I searched hi and low for blue and ivory paisley print pants (or something in the ballpark) to no avail. I ran across these crops from Chicos, and while not quite what I was looking for, they can certainly bring together a similar look.

So, my takeaways are to look around to get inspiration from the fashion pros. They know what they’re doing and they’re giving us the ‘blueprint’ to recreate it ourselves.

. . . . . and, here’s my Fall transitional look utilizing my fave pants. What do you think?

Transitioning into Fall 2018

Happy Monday!

Here’s a few looks of one of my favorite transitional pieces that happens to be a classic and universally flattering: the belted shirtdress.

It’s another a Badgley Mischka with a fluttering handkerchief hemline that updates this vintage silhouette. I love the strong crimson red. It also comes in army green. Either color is perfect to carry into the Autumn months and the 100% cotton fabrication provides comfort while it’s still warm outside. You can find it at Rent the Runway

I like to mix it up a bit by substituting the cloth belt with a leather one or even a long rectangular scarf. Also, if a cool day sneaks in there, add leggings, jeans or boots to your look.

Here’s additional shirtdresses I’ve been eyeing for the Early Fall 2018.

This black floral comfortable number by Leota is made in a Jersey (Polyester and Spandex mix).

 

This black beauty is offered by Tome in a unique print.

 

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For the dressier events, chose this black tie option from Eloquii.

 

So, look to quintessential shirt dresses as you plan your Fall 2018 wardrobe.

Wine and Girlfriends

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“Wine . . . because no great story started with someone eating a salad.”

So Uncork and Unwind at a great winery . . . What better way to celebrate a fabulous friend’s birthday!

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What better dress than this sweet floral garden navy print in silk chiffon by Tanya Taylor. Love the v-neck and faux wrap comfort. This neon lime crossbody by Anya Hindmarch was perfect for two-fisted fun!

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Here’s my dear friend Lisa with the pinot grigio and me with the dry rosé.

Chaddsford is a fine local winery located about 30 miles south of Philadelphia that hosts fun events during the summer, including this weekend’s Summer Food Truck Throwdown Festival.

This is our second year celebrating Lisa’s Birthday there because, you guessed it, we love a great glass of wine. The cool vibes, relaxed setting and friendly folks brought us back again.

We hung out under a red umbrella on the brick patio overlooking the grounds where patrons roamed the food trucks indulging in delicious edibles.

Noticeably were groups of Girlfriends out and about. It’s a great place to unwind, escape and reconnect. Lisa and I took the opportunity to share and support one another as bloggers (Follow Lisa’s blog here).

After a few hours, the heat and humidity finally did us in, so we moved on to the cool climate of the Brandywine River Museum down the road for Gift Shop shopping.

So, what is it about a glass of wine spent with a friend that brings so much comfort?

I’d love to hear your thoughts

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Happy Birthday Lisa!

Curvy Girl Wedding Looks

Annnnnd just like that it’s Monday!

The last few days have been filled with reunions, football, weddings and food surrounded by amazing friends.

My wedding guest look is brought to you by Theia and rented through Rent The Runway. This midnight navy dress with flounce sleeves and bare shoulders made a definitive statement and was perfect for dancing the night away at a reception filled with love and joy. I paired the navy dress with a pop of orange with a minaudiere by Inge Christopher and earrings by Alexis Bittar.

This look was also perfect for a stormy Saturday evening.

So, here’s a few wedding guest looks I love for us curvy girls. They’re all red, my favorite fall color, and great for making a statement and dancing all night long. My go to is Rent The Runway for these fabulous designer styles.

Summer’s Last Stand

They say that August is summer’s last stand, but I choose to enjoy every bit of the season. What I know for sure is that August is a day in the sun.

Sundresses are my go to. This pinstripe ruffle shoulder dress by Eloquii gave me life this summer in the sun. It’s made with a printed blue zig zag cotton weave material and very comfortable to wear.

Speaking of the sun, August is Summer Sun Safety Month 🌞 I know you know the importance of being sun safe. I urge you to continue to think about protecting yourself from this season’s harmful rays. Now is not the time to slack off.

I still remember the awful pain of overexposure to Atlantic City’s (pre-casino days) sun in the 1960s. I was about 8 and I played on the beach all day. Mom protected me with sunblock but who knew you had to reapply and reapply and reapply? Being rushed to the hospital, the burning hurt, and vomiting was not a way to remember a family vacation.

Thankfully, there’s plenty of awareness on the importance of using sun protection. To my melanin sisters, don’t listen to the nonsense about not needing to indulge.

According to the CDC, the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can damage your sun in as little as 15 minutes. Follow their guidelines here for how to protect you and your family.

We all need protection. So, don’t slack off in these dog days of summer.

Pampering Mom

At the end of some days, you just know that it will be enshrined in your heart forever and Saturday was one of those days for me.

I’m glad I was wearing this unforgettable black jersey knit shoulder-baring top by with cascading ruffles and bell sleeves by Rachel Roy. I chose to wear it loose over one of my favorites, a pair of the popular Kady Fit yellow pants by Eloquii. The Striped Irene Tote by CleoBella with leather construction and colorful tassels highlight this bag which is perfect for day with Mom.

When Mom turned 84 this week, I knew it was the perfect time to get her in a spa chair for an invigorating facial treatment. Mom’s a creature of habit and it’s hard to break 84 years of putting oneself last. For as long as I can remember, Mom got great joy of seeing others happy.

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She’s a woman of faith, class, dignity and integrity. She raised 2 of us, but had to pick up the pieces solo when my Dad passed away unexpectedly. My younger brother was just 15. She dedicated most of my youth to being a mentor in the community to many who needed extra love due to a missing parent. Everyone called her “Aunt” and we had that house where everyone wanted to hang out. Of my real cousins, you guessed it, she’s the favorite Auntie.

She’s my muse. My Real Style Icon. When my grandmother treated me like a Princess, Mom went along with it. She had such an influence on me, that yes, I eventually became my mother. Well, not quite, but you know what I mean. I sound like her, etc.

Anyway, I could never seem to get Mom to totally embrace self-love. Mom, let’s take a vacation. Mom, let’s go to the movies. Mom, let’s go to the game. All of these things she loved, but she always said no. Sure, age has caught up to her, but she’s as spry as they come. So, when she turned 84 this past week, we did our usual out to lunch to get fried shrimp. She was elated. You see, I am banned from anymore surprise birthday parties for her (which she thoroughly enjoyed and still talks about them to this day).

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So, with the help of my dear friends at the Clarins Spa in King of Prussia, PA we plotted to get Mom in the store for an afternoon of pampering. SHE LOVED IT! A relaxing facial, hand treatment, other beauty services and a makeover. Did I say SHE LOVED IT? The Clarins Pros were awesome. So, if you’re in our area, may I suggest you head over if you need self-love or if you want to make someone feel special. Ask for Shanna, the Store Manager. Clarins has spas throughout the world, but the only location in the United States is in King of Prussia.

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We topped off the afternoon with a surprise lunch with friends and more fried shrimp.

It was a Great Day!