Archive | January, 2012

Tuesday Lace

31 Jan

All is quiet on the blog front, I know. Blame general exhaustion, tests, and papers. But here’s something pretty to look at to hold you over until I can write a real post again:

Pinned Image

Elie Saab’s Haute Couture 2012 show, as seen this morning on the Free People blog. *sigh* I need to figure out how to get myself to the Academy Awards one way or another so I have a reason to wear dresses like this. Aren’t they gorgeous?

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Currently Lusting…

26 Jan

I have always loved the classic Longchamp bag. It’s classic, clean, and goes with just about everything. I don’t own one (yet) but some of their new spring pieces have me torn… Do I declare my loyalty to the classic I’ve always loved, or one of their daring new prints? They’re so adorb I’ll never decide!

Longchamp tote in Reptiligne print, $210

Autour d'Ha Long print, $215

Longchamp tote in Orchideal, $185 (There's also a blue/green color for this that wouldn't capture for some reason...)

The classic Longchamp... in all leather (!!!) $525.

So what do you think? Classic or print? Over winter they also had a darling black one with neon stripes… too bad I missed it. Are you a Longchamp fan or are they overrated?

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Is the Mint really worth it?

23 Jan

If you’re active in blogland, you no doubt have noticed recently tons of adverts, sponsored posts, recommendations, and reviews of subscription-like online fashion retailers such as StyleMint, JewelMint, ShoeMint, and many others. The appeal of these websites is obvious; they offer a selection of fashion items specifically catered to your personal style that change every month, and they can be yours for just one low price. Sure, I’ve seen products offered by these sites that are trendy and affordable, some I’d even like to purchase. But are these sites really the deal they seem to be, or are they just another way to trick you out of money?

Take StyleMint for instance. For $29.99 each month, you get to pick out one shirt from the website for that same flat price, regardless of color, style, or decoration. (The items are designed by the Olsen twins, btw.) You can skip any month you choose, but chances are that once you see what they’re offering, you’ll be sucked in, thinking “Oh it’s just one.” (And from what I understand, you only have the first 5 days of the month to opt out or they charge you anyway.) Here are some of my current favorites:

The "Hudson"

The "Broadway"

The problem, however, is how easy it is to get sucked in. If you followed the StyleMint plan for a full year, you’d be paying $360 over the course of the year for 12 t-shirts. When looked at from that perspective, it hardly seems worth it or necessary. I for one definitely don’t need 12 new t-shirts, and I can think of other things I would be more willing to spend $350+ on, like a more designer type piece of clothing that will last me much longer than the average life span of a cotton shirt.

JewelMint is a similar service for jewelry, which is designed by Kate Bosworth and her stylist, Cher Coulter. Same $29.99 deal, same opt-out agreement. Here are a few pieces that caught my eye, although even though I think they’re fashionable, I wouldn’t be willing to pay $30 for them rather than finding something similar at Charming Charlie’s or Claire’s for way less.

"Starburst" Ring

"Lucky Charms" pin

ShoeMint, curated by Rachel Bilson, is also the exact same thing, so I won’t bother to explain or show examples, except to mention that your price per pair per month is a whopping $79.98. I understand designer shoes are typically way more than this, but these are pretty much no-name shoes we’re talking about here, so I think any person would be better off shopping around DSW.

Do you use monthly subscription sites like this? What is your opinion of them? Do you feel like you are spending less or more on clothing/accessories because of them? It seems to me like if there’s one piece you really like it might be worth it for one month and then cancel the subscription, but I can’t see myself wanting to commit that much money 12 times a year. What do you think? Worth it or no?

(P.S. totes forgot to mention that the parent company of all these, BeachMint, also owns BeautyMint, fronted by Jessica Simpson. You get the idea….)

Bisous,
Rachel

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Currently Lusting…

21 Jan

One thing I’m currently lusting over is this Vera Bradley yoga mat that I saw in the student union bookstore when I was there to buy textbooks last week. It’s absolutely adorable, but definitely not something I need. The reviews online for the actual practice of yoga are sort of mediocre, but it’s cute nonetheless, no?                                { Vera Bradley yoga mat in Loves Me, originally $48, now $29.}

Are you a Vera fan? What about yoga? I’m trying to get back in to it after a too-long hiatus. I especially love that this bag has a spot for a water bottle!

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The Look of the 2012 Golden Globes

17 Jan

As a producing major, I love watching award shows that honor excellence in the cinematic arts. And let’s be real, the fashion isn’t exactly a turn-off either. Here are some of the night’s best hits and {and misses} from the 2012 Emmy Awards!

Love it:

Modern Family's Sofia Vergara in Vera Wang

Charlize Theron in Dior (nominated for Young Adult.) I love the asymmetry and unusual shape!

Claire Danes (nom'ed for Homeland) shows a daring back cut out in J. Mendel.

Like it:

Elle MacPherson in Zac Posen, loving how she pulls off the winter white.

Michelle Williams in Jason Wu. Not sure how I feel about the blue animal print, but the fitted maxi silhouette is perfection.

Modern Family's Julie Bowen in Reem Acra, displaying my favorite combo, "nude + sparkle." A very classic safe choice, but pretty nonetheless.

Leave it:

Zooey Deschanel (nominated for The New Girl) in Prada... but it kind of looks like an unused costume from an alien movie.

Kelly Osborne in Zac Posen... I apprecite the neo-futuristic vibe, but it's a bit too Jetsons for my taste.

Freida Pinto in Prada. This actress has a gorgeous body... why is she covering it up in a blue sack??

Among my favorite wins, aside from the fashion “yesses,” were Michelle Williams for My Week With Marilyn and Midnight in Paris for Best Screenplay. (Interesting fact: The Golden Globes don’t differentiate between original and adapted screenplay like the Academy Awards do, so this category is kind of a free-for-all.) Somewhat disappointed with George Clooney winning for The Descendants (I thought it was good but not great), and Meryl Streep winning for The Iron Lady. Although I really want to see it and I heard it’s great, there were several other phenomenal actresses nominated this year who I think deserved a shot, like Rooney Mara.

Did you watch the Emmy’s? What did you think of the fashion? What were your favorite movies and tv shows of the past year?

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Jason Wu for Target Preview!!

12 Jan

Are y’all as excited about Jason Wu’s upcoming line for Target as I am? After last year’s Missoni for Target Debacle, I’m not letting anything get between me and that Target store on February 6th when the line comes out for sale. The collection has tons of pieces, but I wanted to showcase just a few of my favorites here. You can view the full collection HERE. Click on an image to view it full-size in a new window :)

"Long-Sleeved Blouse in Blush, $34.99, Lace-Printed Straight Skirt in Blush, $29.99, Lace Clutch in Black, $29.99"

"Sleeveless Top with Sheer Panel in Navy Floral, $26.99 Pleated Skirt in Navy Floral, $29.99" And the same clutch!

"Poplin Dress in Navy, $39.99"

"Flared Dress in Cream with Black Patent Belt, $59.99 (Available at Target.com only)"

As you can see, I’m mostly excited about the dresses, but there are also a ton of great accessories in the line too! I wish he had created a homewares collection a la Missoni, but c’est la vie! These frocks are not only affordable, but are perfectly work appropriate, so I definitely will be scooping at least one up for my future summer internship. Are you looking forward to Jason Wu for Target? What’s your favorite piece in the collection?
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Personal Year in Review

11 Jan

Today is the first day of the spring semester and I’m going to all of my new classes :) A few days ago I told you about my 2011 blog year in review. Now I’d like to recap some of the milestones I had in my personal life in 2011 and what I’m looking forward to in the next 12 months!

January: Enjoyed visiting the family, got hair feathers for the first time, and started a new semester.

February: Took a long weekend vacation in Irvine, CA with sisters and saw a documentary screening hosted by Adrian Grenier!

March: Went home for spring break in Austin and attended the Texas Style Council Blogging Conference, as well as galloped around a few South by Southwest music shows.

April: I returned to the main stage for the first time in a while and performed my choice-role in Royal’s Dog Sees God and had a blast at my sorority’s Black Diamond Formal and the annual (and nationally infamous) Starr Pass Pool Party.

May: I survived finals (hallelujah) and went to Israel for the second summer in a row; as always, it was fantastic!

June: Finished up my trip to Israel and gallivanted around France with my cousin for 8 days through Paris, Bordeaux, and Arcachon. Oh, did I mention I also moved to Los Angeles the day I returned? It was a busy June for sure.

July: Really got into the thick of it exploring LA and working two demanding internships at independent film production companies. I loved exploring the beaches and art museums, as well as getting my feet wet in the entertainment industry!

August: Had a wonderful recruitment where my sorority pledged almost 90 new members, discovered my amazing grandlittle and grandnieces, and started an extremely difficult academic semester.

September: The highlight of September was returning home to Austin for much needed r & r and catching some of my favorites bands and performers at Austin City Limits Music Festival! Not to mention my best friend from high school came along for the journey :)

October: I proudly organized initiation for all of my new sisters, and it went off without a hitch if I do say so myself. Other highlights were Royal Wedding Semi-Formal, many a football tailgate, an autumn baking party, and a very successful Halloween (including awesome DIY costume.)

November: Aside from twenty gazillion school projects and tests, I found time to celebrate homecoming. Coming home for Thanksgiving was fun and relaxing, and I scored an awesome haul on black Friday!

December: Finished the semester with a 4.0 thanks to many sleepless nights, then returned to Austin followed by 9 days on a family cruise to Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao! I ended the year with a bang with a weekend trip with the bestie to see Eli Young Band followed by a wonderful new year’s eve slumber party.

What I’m looking forward to most in 2012: Performing in The Vagina Monologues, finding an awesome summer internship in television development, turning 21, attending the Texas Style Council Conference and Style X, beginning my senior year of college!!! (CRAY.)

What were the highlights of your year? Lowlights? What are you looking forward to most about next year?

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The truth about loafers

9 Jan

I have a confession. For the last few months, I’ve been seeing bloggers sport loafers all over the blogosphere. I read the comments; they confirm their lust, affirm their approval of this benign footwear. Well- the buck stops here, I’m just going to come out and say it: I DON’T LIKE YOUR LOAFERS AND I DON’T THINK THEY LOOK CUTE ON YOU! Whew. Glad I got that out of my system.

Tory Burch red penny loafer, originally $250. (I love me some Tory, but it's $250 too much if you ask me.)

Now let me explain. A ballet flat? I’m down with the that. Leopard print, neon, bring it on. But for some reason, I just can’t bring myself to love a loafer. Maybe it’s in the name. I mean, come on people, it rhymes with gopher. Or conjures up an image of a loaf of white bread. There’s just not any element of chic to a loafer. They just seem so… geriatric. Orthopedic at best, really.

J. Crew "Darby" glitter loafers, originally $215. I'm pretty sure I once saw a picture of former French King Louis XIV wearing these exact same shoes when I took AP European History in high school.

I’m truly sorry if anyone is offended by this post, please, leave me a comment and tear me apart. I promise to appreciate your adverse opinion. Anyone else out there agree with me? I mean it’s one thing if you want to wear cheetah print slipper loafers to get your mail. It’s a complete other story if you want to wear them for an extended period of time in public. Or worse, in public with tights.

Dolce Vita Nariko Smoking Leopard Print Calfhair loafers, $165. (ew.)

Please debate but please don’t hate, just one blogger’s humble opinion :)

In other news, happy Monday!
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Blog Year in Review

5 Jan

I started my blog back in August of 2010. Since then, I’ve learned and changed so much. 2011 was a fabulous year for my blog, and I want to tell you about a few of the accomplishments I reached and some of my blog goals for the new year!

In 2011 I wrote 107 posts, compared to the 34 I wrote in 2010.

My most popular post of the year (and of all time) is DIY Holiday Gifts.

The majority of site visitors reside in the United States, Canada, and The U.K., but I also had readers from South America (Brazil, Peru, Colombia, Venezuela, and Chile), Africa (South Africa, Mauritius, Nigeria, Tunisia, and Egypt), Australia and New Zealand, Asia (The Phillipines, Israel, Indonesia, India, and Japan), and even Germany, Sweden, France, and Italy!

Most people find my blog through Bloglovin’, Facebook, Google, and Twitter.

The top 5 searches that lead people to my blog are Versace for H&M, monogram rainboots, calypso target preview, love a la mode, and elizabeth taylor.

My personal blog goals for 2012: Post on a regular schedule, work more with brands, cultivate an active and loyal following :)

Pretty interesting, no? Do you keep track of how people discover your blog? How did you find out about Love a la mode? As always, thanks for stopping by :)

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NYE Weekend: Eli Young Band and Esther’s Follies!

3 Jan

How a fashion blogger packs for a 36 hour trip: Marc Jacobs, "The Total Pillow," Sweet Leaf Tea, and only about 6 different outfit options.

I had a fabulous NYE weekend and I hope you did too! I started the festivities Friday morning by driving up to Ft.Worth with my best friend (since kindergarten!) Cassie and her boyfriend Zach. We spent the afternoon hanging out and helping Cass organize her apartment, then went to Riscky’s barbeque downtown.

Things I miss when I'm not in the south: sweet tea, and dead animals as acceptable restaurant decor.

After filling up on ribs, we headed to Billy Bob’s famous honky tonk (the largest in Texas) to the sold-out Eli Young Band Concert. I first saw them a few years ago at Austin City Limits Music Festival, and they’ve only gotten better since! I tried to snap a few photos of the band but it was pretty dark and they didn’t come out too well unfortunately :( They played the song which first got me addicted to them, “Guinevere,” but I also loved the covers they did of “American Girl” and “Come Together.”

Best friend Cass and I dancing to the tunes

The next morning, we had a delicious brunch at Yogi’s in FW before heading back to Austin to get ready for NYE!

Pancakes, bacon, eggs, chocolate chip waffle :)

After a little r & r in the afternoon, my best girl friends and I (and super trooper bestie’s bf Zach) went out to a nice dinner and then to a hilarious comedy show downtown on 6th Street at Esther’s Follies.

Besties for almost 10 years!

After we counted down the new year downtown, we headed back to my house for a good old fashioned slumber party with baked brie, chocolate fondue, and a few celebratory libations. It was decidedly low-key which was absolutely perfect.

What did you do for new years? Are you an Eli Young Band fan? What are you looking forward to about 2012?

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