A few months ago I got my hair done and was not happy at all. I’d been getting progressively unhappier with my stylist and this was the last straw. So after months of waiting, I finally made an appointment with a brand new salon and went tonight.

I went in there feeling like I was a big ‘ole mess and looking like this:

To coming out feeling as fresh and pretty as this:

Source: Chance Encounter from Belle & Boo, Etsy

I feel like I can finally take a deep breath and relax.


Thanks to my new salon for taking extra time and providing great care and service!

Store Focus: Tops for Shoes

This past weekend I visited Asheville. This is the second time I had been there and it was a really great trip. During our previous trip it was June and pretty warm, even for the mountains but this was a perfect Fall weekend. We drove through tons of rain, but as we passed into Asheville, the sky was clear and the sun was shining.

It was a great change from home and I was finally able to wear some of my new sweaters, although, not many heels. We just do so much walking around that it really isn’t feasible. Plus, Asheville is a very laid-back, somewhat hippyish town. Earth Shoes, Birkenstocks or Clarks are more common than Manolos or Louboutins. If they are wearing shoes at all.

But there is one very notable and large shoe store – Tops for Shoes.

This shoe store takes up an entire block and the inside is a maze of different rooms and, when I went, was filled with customers. As you can see from their site, their product line is more focused on the comfort end of the shoe scale, so it really wasn’t for me, but they do carry some of the more fun designers like Marc Jacobs and Poetic License. And they ship in the US.

If you are in Asheville and have some time, I would recommend checking them out. One thing to note, they don’t carry much at all below a size 6, so if you wear a smaller size like me, don’t get too hopeful.

How To: Caring for Exotic Accessories

Because of the texture trend for fall incorporating exotic materials, I thought I would pass along this useful How To on caring for your exotic materials. Partial credit goes to Neiman Marcus for providing information. Thanks for the customer service!


Per Kiss Curl at Etsy and eBay, you should use a soft baby brush or natural bristle paintbrush to comb your feathers back into place and remove any dust. Brush in the direction of the feather grain. Feathers are very fragile so do not get them wet if at all possible.

Alligator, Crocodile or Lizard:

If your accessory is of crocodilian genus (like my vintage lizard bag) you need to treat it with high-end leather conditioner more often than you would regular leather. But before you use conditioner all over, make sure to test a small drop on a hidden spot. To remove excess dirt, wipe with a soft, damp cloth.


On ostrich (like this Bottega Veneta hobo), don’t use any chemicals or conditioners. Simply sprinkle oily spots with talcum powder and wipe with a soft, dry cloth.


Like human skin, snakeskin will age more quickly if exposed to sunlight, so take special care to keep your serpentine accessories (like these Michael Kors Cairo pumps) out of the sun. While the scales will naturally lift over time, you should never apply any product; simply wipe with a lint-free cloth in the direction of the scales.

Exotic materials, whether new or vintage, are an investment and, like any purchase, require care and attention. They can be more delicate, but therein lies their unique beauty. Take care of them and they will make you look good for a long long time.

Packing! Packing! Packing, Packing Packing!

We’re going on a road trip and we don’t know what’s in store…
We’re packing up all our stuff and we’re heading out the door!

Photo credit: thenorwegianmafia – Flickr

We’re going on a weekend trip to Asheville, NC. It should be perfect leaf-peeping time! I hope there is lots of Fall color and that it doesn’t rain and that it is cool there compared to the muggy warmth we’ve been having. I may actually get to wear my sweaters finally! Now I just have to find them.

We’re going to have a relaxing weekend visiting Biltmore, walking around downtown and checking out some of the restaurants, pubs and stores.

Photo credit: Biltmore Estate

The biggest challenge is getting everything packed. I’m actually a great, and light, packer… if I’m going on a plane. I actually went on a week business trip, in NYC, with just a small pilot case. The problem comes when we are driving because I feel I have to take advantage of all of the space to bring along any and everything I could possibly need or want.

Of course we need the GPS. Mainly because the husband has no sense of direction and I fall asleep the minute we get in the car. Truly a dangerous combination. Without this, we could be in Maine before I wake up.

And since we’re in the car, we have room to bring our own pillows so we can sleep comfy. I don’t care where you go, you are never going to find a pillow as perfect as your one at home.

I don’t think the B&B will be too offended or anything.

Now luggage.

I’m a sucker for luggage. We are two people and we don’t take that many trips each year. Yet, no lie, I have one giant suitcase, one Samsonite suitcase, 3 pilot cases (that can be checked), a vintage round 60’s Samsonite case, 2 smaller retro-looking cases, and 3 duffel bags (one blue, one Target Mizrahi, and one Target Libertine). I also have this Dooney pilot case which absolutely can not be checked (I have the pink heart version, actually) and…

I also have this Mizrahi pilot case, which I love, even though it is kind of a weird shape. Sadly, about 50% of my luggage is pink and therefore the husband will not touch it. And it’s so pretty I can’t trust checking it on a plane, so I only get to use it on car trips.

Seriously, I have a problem. I know.

Must. Have. iPod.

I resisted for a long time. Now I’m obsessed. This is also part of what a crummy driving companion I am. I’ll put on my headphones and fall asleep, leaving the hubby to drive. But it has movies on it too. And, since I can’t read in the car without getting sick, this is my only entertainment besides sleep.

Another travel must, my kimono robe from Epcot. It goes to the floor but folds up very very thin. Perfect for hotel/B&B modesty.

Now the hard part, what clothes and shoes!!! Ugh!!! I can’t decide and that is where I am going to get in to trouble. I’ll bring twice as much as I will wear, which means we have to carry a bunch of stuff into and out of the car and into the B&B. And it will probably be raining. So that sucks.

What I’m thinking, though, is some variation on this:

Packing List – in progress:

  • Toiletries – shampoo, conditioner, make-up, face soap, mousse, Proactive, face and body lotion, cotton balls, anti-perspirant, vitamins
  • Robe, night shirt and pants, socks to wear instead of slippers, undergarments
  • Comb and brush, toothbrush and toothpaste, hair band
  • Laptop, phone and Blackberry chargers, cords
  • Umbrella and Rain boots
  • Pashmina (faux)
  • Fun socks and tights
  • Jeans
  • Jeans jacket
  • Magazines and book
  • Feather fascinators and gloves
  • Hat and sunglasses
  • Grey shirt dress and vintage green heels
  • Red Converse
  • Tweed flats
  • Grey Kimono Sweater
  • Grey Owl v-neck from Etsy
  • Sweater dress
  • Pink satin JCrew heels
  • Red v-neck from the Gap
  • Argyle sweater from Target

Wait, how long are we going for again? Does this seem like I’m packing too much?

But there’s still room in the car!!!!

Designer Focus – Le Silla

As I look through more and more blogs, websites and publications, it is easy to get overwhelmed with the gorgeous product to be found. And with more and more young designers making it to the marketplace and more websites and stores carrying their lines, I’m branching out from the core of Louboutin, Choo and Blahnik.

I really admire these newer designers and am inspired by their designs and unique aesthetics.

The newest designer I’m totally smitten with is Le Silla. The source of inspiration for Enio Silla, who has always been the Le Silla designer, is to materialize the idea of seduction, to make the image of a woman real and full of femininity. I’m sure that he has pulled from the Louboutin vision as well, but while Louboutins are overtly sexy, I find Le Sillas to have a quieter elegant sex appeal (some of them) with forays into Guiseppe Zanotti/Prada-esque styling.

Their site isn’t the easiest to navigate, so be warned. I preferred looking at what was available on the Saks site. This is where I first saw them and fell in love.

The tuxedo styling on these could bring a sexy girliness to a formal pants outfit, class up a pair of jeans or be really different with a suit. What a great shape they have.

These satin d’Orsays are the perfect elegant formal shoe but I would wear these all the time because I find them so feminine and pretty. The fullness of the bow is my favorite part.

Aren’t these a pretty take on the mary jane style? I love the stitched pattern on matte satin with the oversized button to give it a fresh modern look.

These are my absolute favorites – their “Stardust Heels”. On the site they are described as: Slender bone heels support rich metallic suede. I’m pining for these.

I want all of these shoes! They are officially a new favorite designer. Now I just need to get some!

Movie Night Ensemble

When we lived in Florida we used to do a lot more “social” things. We would go to more plays and clubs, etc., but since we’ve moved, we’ve been too busy. Also, there is not as much to do in our smaller area, which we are still getting used to. Not that we mind, but we like to go out with friends as much as we can.

So you have to make your own fun.

This year we started doing a “Movie Night” once a month. But not your everyday come-on-over-put-in-a-DVD-and-we’ll-pop-some-popcorn Movie Night. We’re talking MOVIE NIGHT

We have a pretty big backyard and we put up a 12-foot screen and play movies for as many people that want to come on over. It’s totally awesome!

What I love about it is that we have a ton of friends over, it’s really casual and easy to prep for, plus I don’t have to clean the house. I don’t get to get dressed up but I do think about what I’m wearing.

I wear, my jeans, a graphic tee from Old Navy, yard shoes (sneakers or boots), a scarf (since it’s chilly now), blankies and, if we have the time, accessories with a bonfire and s’mores!

This movie night I’m wearing my No Hunting tee from Old Navy. A little political announcement before the festivities.

Rainy Day Friday

So I took off work today because my husband’s uncle is in town staying with us and we were going to take him all around town, show him the sites, maybe head over to the state fair and then dinner and a play.

Except the husband had 5 hour work project turn into a 24 hour work crisis, plus it rained all day, so we didn’t go any where. I’ve been sitting around the house in my bathrobe all day. We didn’t even eat lunch, just snacked on some crackers and stuff. But we are going to take him out for a delicious Indian dinner, so I guess I need to actually get up and get dressed.

Do you think it would be too much to wear a mini-skirt, pink argyle top, stripey JCrew socks and my black and white polka-dot wellies? I do have the big pink Hello Kitty umbrella to accessorise with.

Or I could wear black patent mary janes instead of the boots, because they may be too tacky to wear in the restaurant.