Kate Spade Fashion …at Lowes??

You’ll find beauty in the most unlikely places.

Jacket: Kate Spade Shirt: JCREW Skirt: Worthington Shoes: JCREW Bag: Kate Spade Scarf Accent: CollectionEighteen Necklace: JCREW Earrings: Bealles

Jacket: Kate Spade   Shirt: JCREW   Skirt: Worthington   Shoes: JCREW   Bag: Kate Spade   Scarf Accent: CollectionEighteen
Necklace: JCREW   Earrings: Bealles

I had to run a few errands today and planned on shooting today’s outfit outside in the bright, Spring sunshine. I then walked outside and into a rainy, gloomy and dismal day.

There went the photo shoot plans…not to mention my hair!

While running errands with my friend, I found myself at Lowes, where America “Never Stops Improving”.

Not sure if everyone has access to a Lowes but it’s a very large, “big box” home improvement store.

Think lots of lumber, plumbing tools, saws, wrenches and general stuff that falls into those categories.   My only reason for being at Lowes was to buy a last minute birthday present for my hubby – Happy Birthday today Hubby!

As I walked thru the aisles of Lowes, I tried to find some beauty in the items that they stock. I thought that if I could only find some nice spot, some oasis of delight, I’d whip out my camera and shoot a few pictures right in the store!

After searching a bit I stumbled into the lighting area and found a wonderful display of chandeliers, tinkling and sparkling in soft lighting. It was perfect! Or as perfect as its gonna get when you’re pulling off a “OOTD” shoot in a home improvement store!

So here’s my pics – hope you enjoy!

P.S. I’m really in love with this outfit. I just bought the Kate Spade jacket off of eBAY – at a GREAT price, which I will not divulge as you’ll just be jealous. 🙂 It’s in pristine condition and I just love the color and cut. Have a great weekend!! Xoxo…Cortneybre…

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A day of layering…because the weather isn’t my friend….

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A quick share of my Monday attire.  Our weather can’t decide what to do so I wore layers today just in case it:

a) got hotter

b) got colder or

c) rain, snowed, or stayed 65 degrees.  It’s SO difficult to dress with the weather misbehaving!

 

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I have on a Worthington blazer, complete with awesome shoulder pads, from JC Penney.  I picked this blazer up for less than $10 a few months ago and I like that I can wear it year-round.

The blouse is by Gap and was also on sale and very versatile.  The geometric print blouse adds dimension, especially when worn with floral.

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My skirt is also by Worthington and is a mermaid cut – or at least that’s what I’m calling it.  It’s fitted thru the waist and hips and flares mid-thigh.  It also has a great polka dotted pattern that pairs well with the floral jacket and geometric print blouse!

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The shoes are Vince Camuto, glasses by Colehaan, bracelets by Bealles, watch by Kate Spade and necklace by Yochi NY.

Hope you all have a great Monday and a great week!  Cortneybre…

Everyday Inspiration…Beauty is Beautiful

I look for fashion inspiration everywhere.  I was told by a dear friend that I represent beauty.  Not that I, myself, am beautiful but rather that I am drawn to beauty and it is drawn to me.  That was one of the nicest compliments I’ve gotten and I like to think that it is true.  I am excited by beautiful things – fabrics, colors, sparkle, texture – regardless of its form.  I am physically moved by beauty and feel my soul stir when I find something that strikes me.

As I’ve searched for fashion inspiration in planning the outfits that I post on this blog, I’ve learned that inspiration comes from everywhere. Lately, I’ve started collecting images I find beautiful and working to build outfits based on those images.  I’ll be showcasing some of those this week along with the image or item that inspired the outfit.

Today’s picture post was inspired by a beautiful mirror that a sweet friend gifted to me at Christmas.  It is just gorgeous with its sparkly peacock pattern.  I took the mirror home to place it in my closet – which for me is my secret play & plan place.  I display as much of my wardrobe and jewelry as possible so that I may visually plan the next day’s garb.  I placed the mirror on my shelf and realized that it matched the pants hanging just below it!  And so, the post below was inspired by my beautiful gift.  {I must also admit that I did – for a short second – contemplate somehow hanging the mirror from a chain and wearing it as a necklace or accessory with the pants.  Obviously…that didn’t work out which is a good thing because I don’t think I could have pulled that off but it was contemplated!}

And…although it isn’t an excuse, it is at the moment, VERY COLD where I live and that has affected my ability to photograph as I normally do.  I thought I was leaving the cold when I returned from New York but that doesn’t appear to be the case and it is in fact colder where I live versus NYC.   So, dear readers, please take that into account when viewing my posts.  Until it warms up here – which should be this weekend or so, my photos will be a bit rushed, the lighting might not be perfect and I’ll appear a bit windblown!    Cheers!  Cortneybre…

Beauty Inspiration

Beauty Inspiration

Holiday Party Style – The Black Sequined Cardigan…

Holiday parties…oh the weight of those words!  The very phrase, You are invited … makes some women quiver with fright!  And why?  Three words…WHAT TO WEAR???

Well, let’s just clear the air and take a deep breath!  All is not lost!  Let me introduce one wonderful item that can take any outfit, no matter how drab and make it fab!

 The black sequined cardigan.   

Need reasons to LOVE the black sequined cardigan?  Here you go!

It’s not a sweater!

When I think sweater I think casual, I think jeans, I think bringing wood in and building a fire.  I DO NOT think party.  Therefore, unless it’s an “ugly sweater” party, skip the sweater and go for the cardigan.

Buttons!

Cardigans (mostly) have buttons and buttons make things seem more tailored and fitted.  Someone took an extra effort to make all of those little button holes and to sew on those beautiful button baubles.  In turn, you took the extra effort to buy and recognize such tailoring extras and this makes a cardigan more party appropriate.  If the “cardigan” does not have buttons…is it really a cardigan or just a sweater playing dress up?  Methinks it’s a sweater and if so, re-read the first reason.

Sequins!

Oh for the love of glitter and all things sparkly!  Sequins…one cannot get enough!  Do I need to tell you that sequins add depth and glamour?!  They are brightening as they reflect light and can add pizzazz to the drabbest of attire.  Sequins signal the party has begun!  Just do not be surprised if people want to “pet” your sequins…this has happened to me and the safest response is to back away slowly.

Black goes with everything!

You can wear black with just about everything..except maybe brown but even that can be made to work.  (Come on…black and brown to a Holiday party…really?…you can do better).  So, once you have the sequined cardigan, you’ve pretty much gotten the outfit all picked out!  Just grab a skirt or pair of slacks of your choosing and you’re all set!

Abundance!  They’re easy to find!

Just search “black sequined cardigan” and you’ll find many options to choose from and purchase online.  This is much easier than trying on dress after dress at the department store!

So, my friends…I hope you enjoy attending any Holiday parties to which you have been invited.  Go…eat, drink and be merry!  And wear sequins!  Cortneybre…

Cardigan: Worthington Pants: Cynthia Rowley Shoes: Kate Spade NY Sunglasses: UnionBay

Cardigan: Worthington
Pants: Cynthia Rowley
Shoes: Kate Spade NY
Sunglasses: UnionBay

Peppy in Peplum! {A Friday Favorite!}

I just love peplum tops and dresses!  They are instantly slimming and refined.  Today I have on double trouble peplum!  I have a peplum jacket paired with a striped peplum top underneath.  You would think this would be peppy overkill but it really just gave me a little more flounce, which is just fine.

Did you know that the term peplum is derived from the Greek word peplos meaning tunic or shawl?  It is described as a short overskirt that is usually attached to a fitted jacket, blouse or dress.  Essentially this makes your waist appear smaller and your hips fuller.

The peplum look was popular in the 1940’s and again in the 1980’s.  It is now considered a vintage look although I feel it can look quite modern depending on the fabric and the cut of the skirt.

I find that peplum tops are very versatile.  I can wear them with pencil skirts or full skirts as well as slacks or jeans.  Adding a belt to a peplum top can change the entire look of the outfit!  Also, as I’ve done today, don’t be afraid to layer your peplum top or dress with a peplum jacket!

As a tip, should you find yourself overeating at lunch or dinner during this bountiful Holiday season, the extra ruffle of the peplum skirt can hide a multitude of indiscretions – both past and present!

Peplum IIPeplum I

Live Life Colorfully…A Guide to Wearing Bright Colors…

It’s a rainy day here and very drab.  I was thinking about how “ugly” it was outside today when I picked my attire this morning.  I chose a bright (as in, don’t look directly at it for fear of blindness!) yellow jacket with a black and white striped skirt.  Why not wear something bright on a rainy (or in some cases snowy) day?  Bright colors are always so happy and eye catching yet many people shy away from them.  Here’s a little guide I use for choosing and wearing bright colors.

When in doubt choose one bright color:

As you become more comfortable, you can possibly add an accent color but when first adding color to your wardrobe, stick to simple.

Start with a bright blouse or shirt under a dark jacket:

A bright blouse will shine underneath a darker jacket.  This POP of color will brighten your wardrobe and your day! (as will the tons of compliments you receive!)

Be careful when wearing brightly colored jewelry with brightly colored clothes:

I see this very often, especially in summer.  Someone is sporting one color from head to toe and to top it off, a beautiful necklace (and maybe earrings) of the same hue.  Too much of a good thing is…uh… a bad thing.  When you wear too much of one color (bright or not) it appears overwhelming and the outfit loses focus.  Plus you can be identified as “the lady who wore that REALLY “insert bright color worn” outfit that day and caused everyone’s eyes to water”.  No one wants to be that lady.

 Pair a bright color with black and white patterns:

This is an instant hit!  No matter what the black and white pattern, you can typically wear it with ANY bright color and it looks great!  Browns and denims can also be used this way as they are neutrals.  Check out my look for today as I’ve used this rule and paired my yellow jacket with a black and white striped skirt!

If at all possible, wear bright red lipstick:

Ok…this is just my personal mantra but I do SO enjoy red lipstick.  And it often pairs wonderfully with bright colors!  Give it a try!

When you’re ready…add a compatible color:

This can be tricky but if you get it right, the result is a whole lotta awesome!  It may sound silly but you can use a color wheel to pick your wardrobe.  Here are the rules:

Pick colors that:

  • Are directly next to each other (example: yellow and orange or yellow and green)  OR
  • Form a right angle with each other (example: orange-yellow and red or red-orange and violet) OR
  • Directly across from each other (example: yellow and violet or orange and blue)

colorwheel

 

Live life colorfully, my friends!

Cortneybre…

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Faux Fur Vest – Wooly Mammoth or Really Marvelous

Today I have on a faux fur vest.  It is very warm and I’ve paired it with a skirt and boots.  I have a friend who also owns a faux fur vest and looks smashing in it…but do I?

I am not one who typically doubts her fashion choices.  Everyone who knows me or sees me on a regular basis knows I am quirky and a risk taker when it comes to trends.  I like standing out in a crowd and don’t mind pushing the boundaries with my choices.

Today, however, I feel as if I’ve murdered a fluffy stuffed bear and taken its pelt as my prize!

Perhaps it’s the puffiness of the vest or that I can pet it if I’m feeling needy.  Or that when I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror, I thought I could accessorize with a nice Neanderthal-esqe club.  All jokes aside, I find it difficult to wear faux fur.  The first question of the day was, “Is it real”…which is at first flattering but quickly concerning as I’m not one to wear real fur (I’d have some explaining to do to my fluffy cat at home).  The real difficulty lies with the fur look itself, even though it’s faux, looking too riche or upscale for more informal or business settings.

I think I’ll see how the vest is received today.  The looks and comments I receive are usually a good indicator of the outfit’s success or failure.   Or maybe I’ll just wear it with pride regardless of reception.  If someone doesn’t like the look, I might just knock them about with my Neanderthal club and be done with it!

Cortneybre…

Shirt - Worthington JC Penney Skirt -MNG by Mango  Boots - Nine West Vest - Bedford Cottage Watch - Kate Spade Bracelets: Danish Design

Shirt – Worthington JC Penney
Skirt -MNG by Mango
Boots – Nine West
Vest – Bedford Cottage
Watch – Kate Spade
Bracelets: Danish Design