Friday, April 30, 2010

You're Invited! Now What Do YouWwear?

Today's post is something we've become experts on these past few weeks.  An old friend of ours is getting married this weekend (Yay, Mike!) and when we got the invitations in the mail we were excited.  Then, the excitement was overcome by stress as we both realized we had nothing to wear but black (inappropriate for the season) and white (how rude!)  So, over the past few weeks we've been busy scouring the racks for that perfect dress.  We've literally tried on dozens of different dresses, in a variety of different styles and colors and lucky for you we've decided to share some of the ones we found that we think are worth heading out to the store to check out. So, here are are picks for the top dresses to wear as the guest of a wedding this spring or summer:

This Calvin Klein Dress is perfect for the less formal event. We think this would be the perfect dress for a daytime garden wedding or an anytime of day beach wedding. This dress seems like it was designed perfectly for a women's body - the 1950's style fitted top and flared bottom will add curves if you have none or perfectly accentuate your assets if you are well endowed. 

For a dressier occasion, we love this green Grecian dress from ModCloth.  Our friend Maggie has had her eye on this one, and we must agree, the color and cut of this dress are simply fantastic.  This dress can easily be dressed up with some sparkly jewelry and metallic heels, or dressed down with some brown leather sandals and a little jacket.

Did you know David's Bridal dresses are not just for Brides and Bridesmaids?!  You can actually go and try them on just like any dress shop and many of the dresses for bridesmaids would be perfect to wear as the guest of a wedding.  Take this strapless number for instance.  It comes in a million colors, is only $99, and has pockets!  What more could we ask for?

Remember how we are in love with gray?  Well, we sure would have been fighting over who would have gotten to wear this elegant dress from J. Crew, but we found out the wedding colors were gray and yellow and neither of us wanted to run the risk of wearing the same shade as the bridesmaids!  Nevertheless, this is a fantastic color and the dress is so delicate and feminine with the pretty chiffon overlay.  Plus, a simple, muted dress like this one serves as a fantastic blank pallet for bold and beautiful accessories and sexy heels!

So, you're probably wondering what we picked for ourselves!  Jen had a terribly hard time finding a dress, as her body shape is extremely difficult to fit. Finally, after trying on at least 40 dresses and dreading the costs of alterations, she found this royal blue, spaghetti strap dress that fits fairly well and was only $60!  This chiffon tiered dress was purchased from Group USA in the Franklin Mills Mall in PA and will be accessorized with black and pewter shoes and jewelry for a more glam look.

Saira, luckily, came across this strapless navy blue dress 9 months ago (someone was a little eager).  This tiered dress by Adrianna Papell is modern with it's subtle, unfinished edges but classic with the soft, delicate layers of satin. This dress is simple and understated, but perfectly elegant for any formal or semi-formal occasion.

Whatever you do, don't wear white!

Jen & Saira

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Thank you cards

Dearest Dolls,

Every modern girl knows that even though some social practices are outdated, good manners are still and always will be extremely important in both your personal and professional life.  Proper etiquette and good manners are not just for the old fashion, stuffy folks, they are crucial to building positive relationships with others and serve to show others that you respect, care about, and appreciate them. Therefore, we think it's always handy to have a good set of thank you cards ready!  Whether it's thanking someone for a gift, helping you move, or setting up a job interview, a thank you card is a nice, intimate touch that really shows you care. Here are some unique thank you cards that we thought are sure to liven up your correspondence:

This thank you note available at Barnes & Noble is elegant and tasteful. The front of the card is designed with Queen Anne lace, and the inside is blank, giving you plenty of room to share your thanks with a friend, family member, or employer.

If you want something more unique, then these handmade thank you cards by Etsy seller thecraftpantry are right for you. The simple design and the bright florals make this a fun and fresh choice to express your gratitude. 

These pretty note cards from Etsy seller Sweet Bella are also handmade, and are just so fresh and sweet. We love that the set comes with matching envelope seals, to provide a very finished look to your correspondence. 

Continuing with the bird theme, we recommend this card from PaperPrince Marami. The splashes of color and delicate print give the card a vintage touch, but it is still formal enough to send to co-workers as well as friends and family.

For a more eco-conscious choice, try this "green" thank you note by Night Owl Paper Goods. Made from layers of harvested wood bits and paper scraps, every single card is one-of-a-kind, not to mention absolutely lovely.

Sometimes less is more! This thank you card available at Red Stamp is so simple and cute, and would be a great for teachers and students alike. Plus we love that the card is gender neutral, so you can share them with whomever!

Thank you, ever so much, for reading!


Jen & Saira

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Color Day: Aqua & Lime

Here is a playful, modern color palette for a spring or summertime wedding.  The bright lime green with the shade of aqua is an eye catching combination that is youthful, fresh, and of course, bold.  These vibrant hues scream fun and excitement and will be sure to energize your party, wedding, or lifestyle.

Jen & Saira

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Ahoy there, matey!

Summer is around the corner, and the nautical look is back in fashion. But, don't fret, you don't need to own your own yacht to try out this look. It's fresh and cool without being too preppy, plus it's a really simple look to put eye patches or peg legs required! All you really need is a striped shirt, some oxfords, and a blazer, and you're all set to go. Here are some must have pieces to include in your wardrobe that will have you on deck and ready to set sail this summer:

This simple boat neck striped shirt by BDG is pretty and casual. Jazz up the nautical stripes by pairing it with rolled up jeans or khaki capris, and add some gold or yellow accessories or red heels (or flip flops if you're feeling a little more laid back) for contrast.

Don't just walk the plank... strut your stuff!  These wedges by Jessica Simpson will add a pop of color to all the navy and white and we love the braided rope look on the wedge itself.  Plus, it will draw attention to your cute summer pedicure!

But if you're looking for a piece that is a little more summery, we suggest something like this nautical sun dress by O'Neill. It has a fun sea gull and sailboat print and ties in the back to give it a nice slimming fit. 

Every girl knows that a snug blazer can go a long way, and can be paired with almost anything in your wardrobe for an instantly polished look. Chart your course to style with this navy blazer by Gap! It's all about the fit, so don't be afraid to get something narrowly tailored to fit your physique. 

It's probably pretty obvious by now, but we are crazy for charm necklaces. This nautical themed necklace available at Metropark is a great look for this summer. The gold will look great with your navy pieces and the white gives it that beachy shell look that will perfectly compliment your tan.

We love this flowy striped shirt available at Mod Cloth. The stripes are subtle and the bow and peasant style sleeves are just darling!  This top makes it easy to wear the nautical look without going overboard!

Those ocean breezes are killer! To stay warm during the cool summer nights, try on this cropped nautical-inspired coat from Delia's. We love the brass buttons and the bold red stripes but what's really fantastic is it's made from sweat shirt material, so it's super comfy!

All aboard!

Jen & Saira

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Travel in Style

The worst possible thing when traveling is losing your luggage! In a sea of boring black and grey luggage that can be easily lost in the shadows, one way to ensure that your luggage gets there and back is to have it stand out from the crowd. Plus, cute luggage is a great accessory if you travel often for work or for pleasure. Here are some of our favorite travel styles:

Roxy makes fashionable gear for cruising the waves, the slopes, and apparently the skies! This super cute rolling suiter by the popular surf brand is pretty, functional, and will definitely stand out on the luggage carousel. And you can get a matching carrying case to go with! Accessorizing is the best.

If you're more of a day tripper, then try out this stylish leather duffle by Love Luggage. We love this brand because it makes durable, handheld luggage, and throws in a skull and crossbones now and then to add some edge.

Carry-on luggage can be cute too! This piece by Orla Kiely features multiple pockets for extra storage, but is still compact enough to fit right over your head. Plus the trolley print adds some much needed kitsch to your travel itinerary. 

If you run into turbulence during your flight, never fear, your luggage is safe in this shell cased trolley designed by Hideo Wakamatsu. It comes in two sizes, and has a pretty purple interior lining so your clothing can ride in style.  

While we did caution to stay away from black luggage, something tells us that this polka-dot luggage set available at Target will still be pretty easy to find. It's a bit more understated than some of the other pieces we've shown, and it comes at a bargain price. Bargain style -- what more could a doll want? 

Happy travels!

Jen & Saira

Friday, April 23, 2010

"Green" Weddings

We know your wedding day is important... that all your life you've dreamed of the huge, beaded, taffeta dress, orchids, ornate invitations, caviar, and the works.  But, did you ever stop to think about where all the stuff goes afterwards?  Usually, it's the trash can, or closet, if you're lucky.

The typical wedding produces an obscene amount of waste and is usually not very eco-friendly.  To put it into perspective, let's consider paper products! You've got the save the dates, then the invitations to all the different events like the showers, parties, rehearsal dinner, etc., then the thank you cards for those events, then the actual invitations and all their parts and, of course, you can't forget the envelopes for all of these things -- sounds a little excessive, right?  And that doesn't even include the programs, menus, tables cards, etc!  And let's not even talk about flowers!  

Okay, okay, so now you're probably thinking having an eco-friendly wedding is impossible since, obviously, silk flowers are tacky, email/facebook/twitter invites are inappropriate, and your guests do actually need to eat.  But, never fear, this post is meant to inspire you to have your dream wedding, and still be green!  Take a look at some green elements you can include in your wedding...even the smallest step is a step in the right direction.

Before we even talk wedding, we should talk engagement.  Get off to the right start with this engagement ring that is made using Canadian, conflict-free diamonds and recycled/reclaimed gold and platinum.  This "Amelia" ring is from the Earthwise collection by Leber Jewelers.

These Eco-Friendly Wedding Invitations are a great way to reduce your carbon footprint!  Bella Figura produces seriously gorgeous invitations on 100% Cotton Paper so no trees are harmed in the making.  In addition to that, their shop is wind powered, they are a carbon neutral company, and they donate a percentage of their proceeds to environmental charities.

This  "green" wedding gown is absolutely stunning and is made using using natural, sustainable, and "peaceful" materials.  Puridee designs fabulous gowns made with "Ahimsa" and "Tussah" silk, which is either collected in the wild or made in an organic environment that allows the silkworm to go through a natural life cycle and emerge as a moth.  Be extra green by donating your dress to a wonderful charity so that it may bring someone else the happiness it brought you!

Our favorite pick for an eco-friendly wedding favor is this adorable, biodegradable seed pot by favorcreative.  Not only can your guests enjoy this over and over as they grow their herbs, but the boxes are made of recycled material and all you have to do to have them double as table cards is add a little seed paper tag.  Or, write directly on the box if you really want to save on paper.

When it comes to wedding flowers, the trick is to think local, in-season, and double duty! We suggest checking out your local Whole Foods if you're looking for a cost effective, eco-friendly option. Their abundant floral department will surprise you and you're sure to rest easy knowing you are supporting local farmers!  As for double duty, get the best bang for your buck and waste less by re-using your ceremony decorations as part of your reception decor.  And, for the ultra green centerpiece, recycle old mason jars, scour flea markets for unique containers, or re purpose some used tea tins as vases -- the options are endless and they are sure to strike up conversation amongst your guests.

And, what would a wedding be without dessert!?  Now, we are not vegans..not even close.. but considering the impact that the dairy and factory farming industry has on the earth, you could be eco-friendly by choosing to go vegan for your wedding cake, your guests will never know the difference!  Here is a picture of one of the fantastic looking vegan cupcakes by KTsKitchen.  Though she is based out of Ohio, we're sure that if you look around you'll be able to find someone selling vegan baked goods in your area

Love the earth!

Jen & Saira

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Happy Earth Day!

In honor of Earth Day, today's post is dedicated to beautiful, earth friendly, items that have been either recycled, upcycled, re-purposed, or made of natural and organic materials.  It makes us ladies happy to see names on our lotions and makeup that we can pronounce - no dyes or chemicals!  It also makes us happy to see someone's discarded trash take on a new life as someone else's new treasure and there are plenty of useful items out there that just need a little sprucing up!  Honestly, no one will ever know that your new yellow dresser came from the scrap pile and not Anthropology.  Anyway, here are a few lovely and/or useful items we found from creative Etsy sellers that can please both you and Mother Earth too! 

Super Cute Recycled Fabric Clutch By Lolos
Made with all natural, recycled canvas and cotton fabrics.

Re-purposed Vintage Typewriter Key Necklace by Keys and Memories
Made using salvaged, early 20th century typewriter keys.

Adorable Paint Sample Notebooks by Crab Apple Designs
Made with discarded paint sample cards.

Stylish Recycled Guitar String Bracelet By FoxDesignsJewelry.  Made with re-purposed strings from electric guitars.

Recycled Map Stationary by Dote.
Made with card stock and a recycled 1973 map of Florida.

Natural Gemstone and Recycled Silver Ring by Ethora
Made using recycled silver wire and natural Amazonite stones.

Reusable Sandwich Baggie by BellsandUnicorns
No more Ziplocs in landfills!  Made with water resistant lining.

Soothing lotion for cramps by Garden of Holly
Made with organic and all natural ingredients.

Folding reusable shopping bag by aBeachBreeze
Folds neatly into itself so you'll never forget it at home again!

Romantic Prints by ArtSchoolGirl
Made using recycled paper and soy based inks.

Reduce. Reuse. Recycle.

Jen & Saira

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Color Day - Ocean Breeze

While we anxiously await the summer sun, we've put together this little wedding inspiration board with a sample of cool, traditional summer color. When you think summer you think sand between your toes and wave after wave of refreshing ocean water, so our color theme this week is loosely based on those which you may find at the beach.  These colors are just a few of the many to come that would be suitable for a casual but elegant summer wedding, beach home, or summer wardrobe. Pairing pale blue with khaki and white will give you a fresh and crisp look that can be extremely serene and calming.

Blue and Khaki Inspiration Board images from: WithThisRingWeddings, SantaBarbaraChic, StyleHive, CornerStoneEvents, Project Wedding, ShoSho Designs, MuslimBridalWear, MGBWHomes, Flowers by Design, Urban Outfitters, Piping Hot Papers, BreadandRoses2Cabin Decor Store , Sleepzine, StyleHive, CheersFavorCompany, vibride, Strawberry Fayre, Amazon

Jen & Saira 

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Hair Style Look Book: Messy Updo

The arrival of humidity and 80+ degree days = frizzy, messy hair, which can be such a pain when dressing up. But you don't have to fight the waves, embrace them! Messy updos are a great way to look formal without looking too stiff. They can be soft and romantic, as well as fun and flirty. So rather than going for a slicked back ballerina bun (a la "Addicted to Love"), go for a more casual look by wearing your hair in a messy updo!

Many of these looks can be easily created by pulling your hair back in a loose ponytail, pinning it up, and pulling out a few loose tendrils. However you can also opt for a more dramatic look by pulling back your locks and teasing them in order to create some major poofage. The best part of this hairstyle is that you can wear it to a formal event, to the office, or to class! Here are some of our favorite messy updos for you to enjoy:

Happy styling!

Jen & Saira