When The World Is Flat

There are just some days when you don’t want to wear heels. There, I said it.

I used to be of the Carrie Bradshaw philosophy that I could basically run a marathon in heels. Plus I am short, so I felt like I needed to level the playing field with at least three inches. I not only felt taller, but more powerful too. It was like I stepped into an improved version of myself.

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And then I became a mom.  You can’t lug a diaper bag and carrier in heels. You can’t chase your toddler around in heels. You can’t kick a ball, do a cartwheel or pull a red wagon in heels. And I like to do those things with my daughter.  I realized that my priorities had shifted and so too should my fashion. And so I put a lot of thought into stiletto alternatives that are still trendy and chic.

Flats are an obvious choice for safe footwear. I prefer them mostly for an office environment and have a few pair I consider staples for my professional wardrobe; Coach calf-hair leopard print, hot pink patent-leather Tory Burch, Michael Kors loafers, for example. I also love versions that buckle around the ankle for a more feminine touch.

TB3That being said, I am comfortable with my vanity to say that I always prefer to infuse my looks with a little bit more attitude than standard flats can provide. If I am going to be short, I need to be fierce. I gravitate towards sneakers and slip-ons a lot for youthful rebellion.

Since sneakers were reintroduced by designers as high fashion alternatives I was excited to buy a pair of Nike Dunks last year. They are a staple in my wardrobe and I literally feel like I can conquer the world when I am wearing them. No wonder guys have so much swagger- they’re in comfortable shoes all day! Check out my post My New Dunks to see which ones I bought.

Converse is a classic brand that seems to unify the young at heart. My daughter wears them, I wear them, hipsters wear them. They really go with everything from summer dresses to boyfriend jeans to cropped chinos. Mine are off-white and go with everything, but I’ve got to say that anyone who wears a bright yellow pair gets a smile from me. My fellow blogger Allyson in Wonderland recently posted about the latest Missoni Converse collaboration which you’ve got to check out! [Post update- just ordered the multi-colored low-top ones!] I’m also a huge fan of Vans, another brand with old school flavor that can provide a fun, flirty and comfortable slip-on option. They seem to be a big hit with moms like Gwen Stefani and Olivia Wilde.

Vans

I’m not sure how I used to navigate the bar scene in black 4″ ankle booties during the winter, but nowadays that would only land me on my butt. In the winter months Beatle booties, moto boots, riding boots and winter boots are the perfect solution to slippery heels. And you can still look good wearing them. Brands like Sorel are reinvigorating their cache in the marketplace with trendy winter boot options. You also can’t go wrong with LL Bean duck boots (even Olivia Palermo has a pair)- see my previous post “Be Comfy, Warm and Happy in LL Bean“. I think Uggs are an obvious winter boot choice too, but I prefer the look to be more of an “I just threw these on” kind of day rather than a “I meant to wear these as an outfit”. If you are a southern girl, you’re probably pretty happy in your cowgirl boots. I don’t know much about them, but they seem like a good stiletto alternative as well.

I’d like to think that my closet is now more well-rounded. I still have my heels when I’m ready to shift into high gear. But I’m thankful for all the other options out there that can still provide the same attitude, confidence and feminine appeal for those of us that live, work and play in the real world. And by that I mean those days when you want to chase your kids all over the park, have to walk from one airline terminal to the next, plan to tailgate at a Patriots game or…you just want to be comfy.

What’s your favorite thing to throw on for Saturday marathon errands or Sunday brunch?

 

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The Best Fitting Jeans I’ve Ever Owned

This is a story about an age old problem. Finding the perfect jeans. Why is it so friggin hard to find the perfect fit? There’s always one outstanding problem with any pair I buy. (Maybe it’s my body shape but I’d prefer to blame the jean companies.)

I now work at a casual office and so I’m literally in jeans every day. Expanding my wardrobe required jean research. The pair I grab each morning depends on my mood, but there are features that they all have in common. I need a medium waist that doesn’t give me muffin top. I need some elasticity to stretch over my big butt. I want traditional pockets placed where they are supposed to be without ridiculous rhinestones. My biggest pet peeve is saggy butt or having to pull them up every 5 minutes.

A lot of jeans have come onto the scene and I’ve tried them all. Going back to my jean research, I realized that a high spandex elasticity helps a curvy figure. So when I came across 7 for All Mankind’s Slim Illusion I freaked out. We’re talking 90% cotton, 6% nylon, 4% spandex. According to their own description, this particular line;

“Features a unique denim with tight construction and intense stretch that will suck you in and slim you down. Intense stretch creates sexy slim silhouette. Exclusive technology provides total shape recovery. Makes you feel at least one size smaller. Tighter construction creates perfect fit.”

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Now they are a little pricey, but…well there’s no but, I can justify any clothing purchase. I bought a skinny pair first and loved them so much that I decided to splurge (Piperlime had a secret 40% off sale) on the bootcut as well. These are literally the perfect jeans. If you are curvy and like body shaping jeans, you’ve got to check these out. 7 For All Mankind Slim Illusion

Happy shopping!

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Falling for Frye Boots

If you’re considering a quality boot investment, consider The Frye Company. Seriously, I got into them last year and in doing my research about the brand and which style I wanted, I was impressed by the hundreds of testimonials that accompany the brand on all websites (I ended up getting Veronica shorties). Frye definitely has a loyal following and with good reason.

Frye was founded in 1863 and is the oldest continuously operating footwear brand in America. The leather feels as solid as the brand’s reputation and the craftsmanship is impeccable. They pay attention to detail and proudly claim that ” it takes more than 190 steps to make one pair Frye boots, and a similar set of processes to make our shoes and accessories.”

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Frye Miranda Zip boots in cognac

Frye’s are an investment. Their shoes and boots will last you years. Prices range in the hundreds, so I have a ShopStyle alert for any styles that go on sale. The website 6pm.com, a Zappos overstock site, recently had the Miranda Zip style on sale and I scooped them out without hesitation. I had been looking for knee-length cognac colored boots for the fall. I just received them last night – I am smitten. They are gorgeous and a perfect fit.

What style fall boots are you looking to purchase? Happy shopping!

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Red Lips

Iconic red

Iconic red

Lately I have been obsessed with finding the perfect red lipstick. And when I say “perfect”, I realize there’s a lot of variables to consider.

First, there’s the fact that I don’t normally like wearing lipstick. It always makes my lips feel dry or the other extreme, gamey. I’ve tried lip gloss and love the moisture it provides but the constant re-applying gets annoying. Now in my 30’s I also prefer to have something with an SPF in it. And the third confounding variable is which color red will work with my skin tone.

My attitude towards lipstick changed when I was introduced to Fresh Cosmetics’ “Sugar” line. It’s AH-MAZEBALLS. It feels like you’re wearing chapstick, has SPF 15, comes in a variety of colors and is very affordable. The only problem is it just doesn’t have the shade of bright red I am looking for.

All of these obstacles considered, I am convinced my perfect red lipstick exists out there. One that will make me look as awesome Kate Moss or Gwen Stefani. One that warns all the other Saturday-errand moms out not to take my leggings lightly just because I chose comfort on that particular occasion. One that takes me from office casual to Friday happy hour in 30 seconds.

What’s your go-to brand for red lips?

 

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My New Dunks

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I admit my interest was peaked with the introduction of wedge sneakers into the fashion world. As a mom, they seemed like the perfect solution to chasing after a fifteen-month old. Comfortable height. Grip. Hipness.

One Saturday afternoon I decided I would go try some on. Lanky model I am not, so I really wondered if shorter curvy types could actually pull this trend off. The answer was a solid no with the first pairs I tried on. They were just too puffy and ugly. I walked away, defeated, thinking the perfect mom shoe would ellude me.

Spending my “cigarette break” (that’s what we call our 10 minutes of mindless online shopping at work) perusing Bloomingdales last week, I stumbled across Nike Dunks and instantly fell in love all over again. They just seem so much sleeker (And cooler! Hello, old school looking Nike high tops??) than other wedge sneakers out there. They, in fact, don’t even look like they have a wedge built in (it’s hidden!).

The rest, as they say is history. I ordered a pair in all black and anxiously await my delivery from Nike.com!

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