Tag Archives: j.crew

styled alternatives: the tuxedo jacket

I love a good tuxedo jacket. Love them every single time I see someone wearing one, whether casually on the street or all dolled up on the red carpet. I love them in black, in white, in blush…just love.

So, are you surprised to learn I don’t actually own one? Me too. As much as I love them, I had two problems. First, I wasn’t entirely sure what a casual girl like me would do with one once I had it in my hot little hands. And two, I hadn’t found perfection. Until I spied this version from EmersonMade, that is.

I fell hard for this beauty, friends. Can you blame me? Yet even through the haze of retail lust, I hesitated – I just wasn’t convinced I could make it work. But fashion is the mother of invention (or something like that), and EmersonMade kindly offered to let me take my best shot. I’m always up for a challenge – especially one this fun!

Friends, this is the tuxedo jacket to end all tuxedo jackets. First, the white is perfect – so much cooler than black, I think. Only it’s not really white. It’s a deep, warm cream that’s utterly perfect for fall/winter. It’s also linen, which scared me a little. But it turns out that rough, nubby texture is exactly what this jacket needs to keep it grounded, and to give it maximum style portability from casual to dressy. Plus, the construction is that of a jacket far pricier than this $238 price tag. Fully lined, sharp shoulders, fabric-covered buttons – definitely structured enough to be a serious closet workhorse.

And it’s proven to be a workhorse indeed. As it turns out, this beautiful jacket is the easiest thing to style since the grey cardigan – but infinitely hotter. I’ve been wearing it with everything (and I do mean everything) from a silk shell (this emerald version from Zara is my current fave) and dark denim (I’m partial to J.Crew’s Matchstick) to a men’s-style grey tee and busted-up boyfriend jeans.

{Let’s see…top by Topshop, but I prefer the Zara version I mentioned (and which I actually own), jeans by J.Crew, earrings by Gorjana, bag by Olivia Harris – love! – and scarf by Pucci.}

I even tried it with my favorite tuxedo pants – and it’s flawless, thanks to the luscious cream color (trying to match blacks being nearly impossible, of course). But the best transformation of all was what it did for my LBD (remember the one from LK Bennett?). It took that dress from sexy to structured without missing a beat, making it instantly perfect for a work holiday party/theatre evening/red carpet. This beauty is definitely earning its keep.

{Since I know you’re dying to know: Sequined top by Vince, black tuxedo pants by Burberry, emerald earrings from Gerard Yosca, velvet clutch from Marc by Marc Jacobs, and shoes by Vince Camuto}.

If you have holiday events ahead (and really, who doesn’t?), this is an absolute must. Nab it now and save yourself a holiday season full of wardrobe stress – the answer will nearly always be this jacket, no matter the occasion. Just be sure to do a good job checking the measurements on this piece (thank god for websites that post product measurements, don’t you agree?) – I ended up going down a size.

And PS – if you want one, order it by Thursday, 11/9, and get as much as 20% off by being EmersonMade’s Facebook buddy. What, you weren’t already?

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friday finds

Happy Friday, everyone…what a week it’s been! I’ve hardly had time to breathe, let alone blog, but that hasn’t stopped me from amassing quite a list of Friday Finds. Even when I’m swimming in things to do, I always manage to find time to covet.

First, I’ve found a new love: BeautyAddicts’ “Double Deception” concealer. The right half is lighter and creamier, so it’s perfect for under the eyes, and the left side works wonders for the rest of your face. It’s all very Alice in Wonderland/magic caterpillar mushroom, but the results are flawless.

I’m obsessing a little over wanting a new pair of ankle boots for the fall. While I’m terrified of light-colored suede for a number of reasons (rain in Portland + denim = blue stripes all over my boots. Not cool.), these are calling to me. And, at $120, I can actually afford to listen.

Have you seen the latest goodies at J.Crew? I’m obsessed with a couple of things: specifically, this tweed jacket and that sequined top. Truthfully, I dream of being able to pull off sequins for day, and I’m thinking if ever there was a reasonable candidate, it’s this one.

And speaking of glitz and glam, I am fascinated by this ring. I can’t exactly figure out how it would look on, but how wrong could it be? I’m smitten.

Even though I’m mad as hell at Target over my whole Missoni debacle, I have to show you this Sonia Kashuk brush set. The brushes are great, the metallic tweed clutch is adorable (and actually cute enough to be carried as a clutch), and the whole thing is $25. I’d have bought the clutch alone for that price, so consider the brushes a highly useful bonus.

Have a wonderful weekend, friends. I’m hoping to spend a couple of hours with my husband and George Clooney…and I’ll see you back here next week!

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currently coveting: fall coats

Every year, I (try to) splurge on a beautiful new coat for fall. After all, no one sees the vast majority of my outfit for at least six months of the year in this rainy climate, as it’s covered up by some sort of outerwear. So, I think I’m entitled to a few fantastic choices. Right? Whatever I choose has to be be fun (yes, coats should definitely be fun!), luxe and always make me feel gorgeous…it’s the least I deserve in the midst of all this rain. This season, I’m set on red, and there are a few options I’m swooning for.

DVF Mikhaila coat (previously blogged, but I can’t get enough!), $745

Reiss 40th Anniversary Lilac coat, $935.

J.Crew Symphony coat, $350.

Then again, I could switch the whole thing up and go pink. I know, red is a statement and all that, but I have to tell you – I once owned a pink coat, and I never received as many compliments on anything I owned than I did on that coat. (Which was, incidentally, picked out by the hubs…a fact he loves to point out).

J.Crew Majesty peacoat, $245.

Smythe Mini coat, $895

Or I could ditch the trend and go with a color I’ve been loving for years. This bright kelly green would be the perfect antidote to grey rainy days, and I know from experience that it’s more neutral than it appears at first glance.

DVF Harrington wrap coat, $695

As evidenced by the lovely Leighton Meester…

What coats are you craving this season?

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friday finds

Happy Friday, friends! Are you relishing these last few summer weekends? I’ve been woefully neglectful of my barbecue, which I’m hoping to remedy this weekend. Also, we finally have a backyard that’s habitable, and I can hardly wait to bust out our patio set. Here’s hoping we get a few more rain-free weekends to put them to good use.

And, with that, on to this week’s Finds!

First, I have to tell you about the two beauty products that have been saving me this summer. I didn’t quite realize their collective power until I spent a weekend at the beach, and had not even a trace of a sunburn on my alabaster (well, pale, at any rate) skin. Honestly. No sunglasses tan lines, no new freckles…nothing. Considering how much my hair bleached out over those two days, I think that’s pretty impressive. So, first, props to DDF Weightless Defense UV Moisturizer SPF 45 (wow, that’s a mouthful).

Yes, it smells like sunscreen – but only for a second when you first put it on. No, it didn’t make me break out, not even a little. Not even when I first switched over. That, friends, is impressive. If you have sun in your future, switch to this immediately.

Second, Sue Devitt’s SpaComplexion tinted moisturizer with “hydrating marine minerals”. I’ve actually had this on hand to try for a few months, but my skin was still too pasty pale from the winter. (Yes, their lightest shade was still too dark for me. Don’t judge.) But my skin finally colored just enough for me to start using this about a month ago (before I’d switched to the mighty DDF sunscreen, mind you), and I’m completely infatuated. It looks and feels like there’s nothing there at all (so you can claim that “no makeup” look), and does a masterful job of glossing over the bad, and generally evening out my skin tone. And again, no breakouts…unlike the 4 other tinted moisturizers I tested.

But enough about my trip, right? This has been a huge jewelry week for me – possibly because I’ve had samples from some of my favorite designers lying around my house all week. Sadly, they have to go back. But in their place, I’m thinking very seriously about some new little bauble for myself. This stunner of a statement necklace from DANNIJO is unbelievable. Cocktail dress? Sure. But just picture this with a grey tee and cutoff shorts. The design is exclusive to my friends at Charm & Chain, which makes me want it even more! I do love a little exclusivity.

And speaking of jewels, Lulu Frost’s collection for J.Crew just debuted. Isn’t it pretty?

It’s possible I’ve been reading too much of The American Heiress (fantastic guilty summer read, by the way), as I’m clearly craving an awful lot of sparkle these days. Speaking of, have you seen all the gorgeous mirrored and sparkly shoes at Topshop right now? They remind me of a grown-up version of Dorothy’s ruby slippers. I’m envisioning them with jewel-toned tights and a great 1940s-inspired dress…unbelievable!

I hope you have a wonderful weekend in store, friends – as for me, I have a huge pile of SEPTEMBER ISSUES staring me down. Best time of the year! I can’t wait to curl up at Peets with my trusty cappuccino and dig in. What do you have planned?

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friday finds

Happy Friday, friends! As usual, there’s no rhyme or reason to this week’s list, though I am noticing an abundance of ultra-bright color. It must be summertime.

The hubs and I have some fun travel plans over the next few months, and I can tell you there’s nothing I’d rather be toting my travel gear in more than this bold blue weekender bag. I love the bright hue, the tribal vibe and the leather trim, and I have a feeling it’d be light as a feather.

It’s still a little early to be thinking fall trends, but this ladylike silk blouse from Madewell will be just the thing with those below-the-knee skirts this fall.

After spotting this beautiful street style image from Atlantic-Pacific

…I can’t stop thinking about adding a chic pair of bright pants to my denim-centric wardrobe. While I’m normally terrified by the idea of a capri, these candy-colored versions from J.Crew look more like an ankle-grazing length than a mid-calf affair, rendering them infinitely more stylish. Now, to pick a color!

And, now that I think about it, that emerald blouse would look pretty amazing with any of these – especially the blue. Be bold, friends!

While I was never a big fan of Gretchen Jones while she was on Project Runway, I have to admit that her new line of jewelry for Piperlime is good. A lot of the pieces miss the mark by *that* much (a spiked earring that would be so much more amazing if the post weren’t dead center, and a long necklace that would be strikingly perfect if the pendant pieces were a bit further down the chain), but there are some styles I’m seriously contemplating. But…no returns allowed on these pieces, so I’m proceeding with caution.

I almost never swoon over baby/kiddie goods (I’m pretty sure I’m missing a gene), but these prints from Heather Ross are a little too perfect. They’re called “Cranky Princesses” – hysterical! Now I just need some little girls to buy them for…

And now, I’m off to spend a fun, relaxing weekend with my BFF, who’s coming to town. I can’t wait! Hope you have something equally fun in store.

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luxe or less: isabel marant

This Isabel Marant “Reilly” jacket from her Spring 2011 collection has been haunting me. First, I spotted it…

Then I spotted it being worn so casually and beautifully by Anja on Garance Dore’s blog:

Then I spotted it being worn in a bit more uptown style by Blake Lively and Katie Holmes (via coolspotters).

Then I spotted it in Lucky with a perfectly-layered, hip downtown vibe.

Sadly, spotting it is all I’ll be doing. It would set me back anywhere from $1,500 to $3,500 (there are a few different trim versions floating around out there) – and it’s been sold out for months. I’m thinking a few alternatives may be in order.

The first option is by Roberto Cavalli – it’s the priciest of the bunch at $560, but the style is also the closest. That said, there’s a bit more boho to this version than I’d like. The sequined jacket from Tory Burch ($348, on sale) has the embellished trim I love, but the rest is a bit more subdued. I quite like this Verona jacket from J.Crew (bonus that it’s on sale for a bizarrely reasonable $99) – it has the same silhouette and feel as the original, but it definitely doesn’t stand out in a crowd. And last, this floral bomber style jacket from Manoush ($253) definitely has the vibe of the Marant, even if the color palette is decidedly different.

So, what do you think? Do any of these styles come close to the original?

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friday finds: my kind of easter egg hunt

What a fun, utterly exhausting week!  I hope yours has been good as well, and that you’re ready for chocolate eggs, Easter brunch, and lots of leftover ham.  Mostly, though, I hope you have today off from work.

I was going to take Good Friday off (because, you know, I’m so religious…), but couldn’t resist “hopping” in to tell you about a few steals that have hit my in-box.

First up, J.Crew is doing one of those things that never happens:  free shipping at any price with code WARMUP (good through Sunday only).  So, now’s the time to check out a few of my favorite new pieces for spring:

From top left: Tomboy tunic, $74; Pier stripe sweatshirt, $68; Silk layering tank, $75; Iris suede sandals, $118; Watson suede sandals, $198.

Another “thing that never happens” is going on at Steven Alan, where you can take 25% off any one item this weekend with code HIPHOP25.  I was a little too excited about this one, until I saw it’s only good on Steven Alan merch (ie, those Rachel Comey boots are still full price).  But, it’s still a deal, especially if you’re in the market for a breezy plaid shirt to throw on over your summer cutoffs.  And really, who isn’t?

From top left (all prices before 25% discount): Tyler skirt, on sale for $115; Spring reverse-seam shirt, $158; Georgiana bag, $475; Carmen tank, on sale for $139.

And last, but most definitely not least, these cutie pie stripe-and-polka-dot sweaters from Cardigan NY (a personal favorite of mine) are a whopping 50% off, plus free shipping, through Sunday.  The magic code for this one is dotdotdot.  I’m sorely, sorely tempted to up the style quotient of my now-standard mariner with one of these cuties.

By the way, is anyone else way more smitten with cutoff denim shorts this year than they ever have been, or is it just me?  Something about the styling this season is just…working.

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone – and remember, once Lent and Passover end, it’s totally expected that you reward yourself with a little treat for all of your good works.

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friday finds: the loooong version

Happy Friday, friends!  This list is quickly becoming more of a way for me to close the browser windows I keep open all week so that I don’t forget things to show you.  By the time we’re done here, my desktop is going to be squeaky clean…and I love it!

First things first, friends:  won’t you please come over and “like” my new ShoppingsMyCardio Facebook page?  It will just take a second, and will make me oh so happy.  I promise not to have one of those annoying pages that posts 10 times a day and takes up your whole feed…I hate that.

So, I haven’t been being all that good about letting you know where else I’ve been writing lately, and we should remedy that.  Mostly because I’m quite proud of an interview I recently did with Rachel Gorenstein, a woman who’s both the creative director & buyer for one of my favorite shops in Portland and the designer behind one of my favorite boutique labels, Rachel Mara.  Total dream job!  The feature was for a new print magazine (remember those?) called About Face, but you can also check it out here.  Also, this dress, which we featured in the piece, is my latest stalker-grade obsession.  Must. Have. It.

Also, I did a fun little feature for a local site called Neighborhood Notes, all about locally-made perfumes.  And I’ll tell you guys the joke I begrudgingly left out of the feature…the one about how when they asked me to write about Portland perfumes, I was instantly snickering to myself, thinking that a “Portland perfume” would have to be some sort of body odor/bong water concoction.  The locals would burn me alive…but I knew you’d think it was hysterical (because it’s true).

Anyway…on to our finds!

This week was “Preview Week” in NYC.  For those of you who don’t obsess over these things like I do, this is the week that virtually every brand that doesn’t show at Fashion Week was showcasing their new collections for Fall.  I’ll have more to show you next week, but for now, a little eye candy from the J.Crew preview.  For the full collection, check out the coverage from Racked and The Cut…but these are a few of my favorites:

Good bags, in particular, don’t you agree? And those plum wide-legged pants are mine, people.  If you’re now in a J.Crew mood (sorry about that), the good news is that they’re offering 20% off $150+ purchases this weekend.  The code is SUNNY…hey, here’s hoping.

I’m perpetually in an art-buying phase…right now, I’m getting ready to print some of my talented husband’s photography for our walls.  But I came across artist John Murphy’s collages for the second time recently, and fell in love with them all over again.  I’ve always wanted a diptych of these two, but how could I possibly be expected to resist that elephant, with the little flower poos?  (I can’t believe I just said “poo” on the blog.  Twice.)

Thoroughly awesome.

In the “cheap thrills” department, Lands’ End Canvas is having a ginormous clearance sale right now.  While I didn’t have much luck with their denim when I tried the brand a while back, I am sort of feeling I could use a back-up pair of skinny jeans for spring, and these Super Slim Jeans are $29, which is highly tempting.  This cut has almost 50% spandex, so really, how badly could they possibly fit?  I will warn that, in my experience, their denim runs s-m-a-l-l…so, size accordingly.

Oh!  Remember that pretty green Cole Haan bag I snagged earlier this month?  Well, nab 25% off the entire (full-price) Cole Haan handbag line today only with code…wait, wait, wait. You have to go to my Facebook or Twitter page to get the code.  Mean?  Extortion?  Nawwww…this is creative marketing, people!  Indulge me, won’t you?

And have a great weekend, friends!

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