Posts Tagged ‘shopping’

Oh, Dana Kellin How You Dissapoint Me.

Tuesday, November 15th, 2011

The first pair of earrings David ever bought me was by designer Dana Kellin.  I discovered her collection of intricate, understated and ultra-feminine jewelry years and years ago at a boutique in  Portland, Oregon and immediately told David I needed a piece for my birthday.

And, as usual, he didn’t disappoint.

When I peeled away the packaging on that birthday present many years ago, I found the most beautiful pair of small, understated, wire-wrapped amethysts.  They were breathtakingly pretty and simple.  I wore them a million times then, and I wear them a million times now.

I love them.

Dana Kellin Designer Earrings

Since then, David has added a couple more of Dana Kellin’s creative, delicate, and antique-inspired pieces to my jewelry collection.  And I adore every piece.

So, imagine how super psyched I was when I was flipping through this month’s People StyleWatch magazine and saw an ad that stated Dana Kellin was designing a collection for everyone’s favorite big-box store, Target

I was super psyched, that is, until I touched it.

Dana Kellin for Target

The collection features necklaces and earrings ranging in price from $9.99 to $49.99 and seriously, I wouldn’t pay $.99 on clearance for it.  The pieces look and feel really cheap.  And the gorgeous wire wrapping Kellin is known for and adds to every piece of her high-end collection is no where to be found. 

I am so disappointed.  I appreciate that Target brings high-end designers and their collections to the masses so everyone can touch, feel, and own the pieces, but Dana Kellin’s collection in no way reflects her design taste, quality, or style.  And frankly, I’m surprised she allowed her name to be associated with with such cheap and uninspired jewelry.

The bottom line:  don’t buy it.  It’s cheap.  It’s plastic.  It’s boring.

Who Wants a New Hat? I Do! I Do!

Wednesday, November 9th, 2011

Now that I’ve bought the boys these cutie patootie knit hats for the winter weather, I totally need one too.  Here are a few of my favs.  (But I’ve gotta admit:  I really, really, really want #7.)



1.  Volcom Slouchy Beanie

2.  Roxy Hazard Beanie

3.  Fox Reggae Beats Beanie

4.  ANTHROPOLOGIE Slouchy Pointelle Beanie

5.  Stripes and Skulls Beanie

6.  Black Diamond Alex Beanie

7.  Burton Chloe Earflap Beanie

8.  ISOTONER Fairisle Knit Hat

New York City: Day 1

Tuesday, November 8th, 2011

My brother-in-law, Scott, lives in New York, so whenever he asks us to visit, he barely gets the words out of his mouth before David and I show up on his doorstep.  And last weekend was one such weekend.  So, after dropping the two boys off with grandma, we flew to New York for a whirlwind 72 hour adventure.

And boy, are our arms tired.  Ba-dah-dump!

In the past, we’ve taken bus tours, visited countless landmarks, and learned all about NYC architecture, but since my brother-in-law had to work Friday,  I told David we’re going shopping.  And we did. 

Day 1:  Soho. 



David and I started our morning at Grey Dog in Soho and we couldn’t have stumbled upon a better place.  At Grey Dog, the prices are good, but the food is even better.  There, you’ll find a spread of breakfast and lunch standards with some original twists, like the challah French toast (which is what I ate).

Their baked goods and takeout options also looked really yummy for those on the go.  And the ambiance:  chill and modern.  Check out the caged pendant lighting they have hanging over the serving counter.  So cute, right?  And if you order lunch, according to the menu board, every sandwich comes with ‘a cute little salad.’

This place was so fun!

Our first shopping stop:  Lollipop.

Unlike some of its more off-the-wall neighbors, this Nolita boutique has struck a good balance between well-cut basics like raincoats and cotton tees and more unusual statement pieces like draped wool skirts and fun hats.

I didn’t buy anything here at Lollipop, but really, really, really wanted to.  Sigh.


Located on a charming, tree-lined block in the Manhattan neighborhood of NoLita, I bought the most beautiful beaded belt from Poppy.  The small clothing boutique is known for carrying a well edited mix of indy and established contemporary collections. 

While strolling the streets of Soho, I gasped when I randomly discovered the store Second Time Around, an upscale consignment shop which features ultra high end designers such as Gucci, Luboutin, Fendi, and Prada.  But the store, and the people who work there, are also stars of Bravo’s new reality show Fashion Hunters, which I LOVE.

The shop was so amazing and everything and more Bravo promised it would be.  And two of the show’s stars, Tara and Karina were actually working there.  The girls were so helpful and sweet, but alas, I didn’t buy a thing.  Most of the clothes I tried on were too big. 

I don’t remember where David and I stopped to get this gorgeous cup of cappuccino, but when I talked to the barista about the beautiful, elaborate design in the foam, he told me it wasn’t just about showing off, it’s actually about proving to the customer that the milk is properly steamed and will therefore hold its form.

Who knew!


Uniqlo has such an amazing store front and display that I had to pop in and see what it was all about.  And I was so not disappointed.

Specializing in well-made basics that rarely cost more than $100, this US flagship of the Japanese brand (which was founded in 1984) is sprawling, well-lit and immaculately organized. Leggings, sweaters, coats, tops, pants, vests, tights, skirts and T-shirts are everywhere you look, in bright colors and bold patterns. Look for inexpensive cashmere, signature fleece jackets and Uniqlo’s popular denim line, which has tourists and local hipsters lining up at the cash register.

I bought one Uniqlo’s light weight black puffy coats.  It’s form fitting, super cute, and really warm.  I love it!


From the outside, 459 Broome Street looks like any other chic SoHo shop. Inside, however, lies a wonderland. Purl SoHo is an upscale fabric, yarn, sewing, knitting and needlework supply oasis for creative individuals of all ages. Opened in 2002, Purl boasts floor to ceiling yarn and fabric choices. Walk in and you will understand the store’s mantra—“Create your world.”

Many crafts stories focus on one discipline—knitting, needlepoint, sewing, or quilting. Purl covers virtually everything. Want to knit a sweater? Baby blanket? Warm scarf for that special someone? Purl has a wide variety of yarns made of angora, mohair, cashmere and more, so you can be as imaginative as you like. If needlepoint is your thing, Purl can get you started on that project, whether a pillow, ottoman, tote bag, or stuffed animal. Embroidery aficionados will find inspiration and plenty of colorful threads for all those fancy stitches.

The store I could not miss while in NYC:  Jonathan Adler.  I am a super fan of his pottery, wallpapers, home decor, and furniture.  And I was not disappointed.  Adler’s space is bursting with everything from beds and sofas to chandeliers and thick wool geometric patterned rugs. The bright, energetic theme carries over to countless accessories such as needlepoint pillows reading “happy”; sunburst mirrors; sheet sets in graphic cocoa-colored prints; dinnerware in brilliant colors; assorted animal statuettes; and tongue-in-cheek cookie jars labeled “Downers,” “Quaaludes,” and “Prozac.”

I wanted everything, of course, but settled for a pair of pretty candle sticks and a little catch all bowl to set on my nightstand to put my rings and other jewelry in at night.

The best part of my Jonathan Adler experience:  Daniel, the store manager.  He told me all about Jonathan Adler including how the designer says goodbye whenever he speaks to someone on the phone.  Daniel told me Adler always says ‘Au revoir,’ (which means goodbye in french) and then an animal sound like ‘oink, moo, or quack.”

How quirky is that?

And all this was only day one!  Stay tuned for day two of David and my New York City adventure!

Oh, So Charming!!!

Sunday, November 6th, 2011

Anthropologie is supplying shoppers with yet another covetable find with their newly-unveiled collection of charms and matching necklaces, designed in collaboration with  John Wind. In my opinion, the collab is a perfect partnership; Wind’s vintage-meets-modern design style is well-suited for the aesthetic of the giant retail chain.

You’ll spot Wind’s love of mixed media within the charm collection, which reflects the “Grandma’s jewelry box” theme of the designer’s own creations for fall 2011. The flea market-chic collab for Anthropologie includes twenty different “fascinators,” like fluffy feathers, natural stones, heart-shaped whistles, and wooden letters, most accented by brass hardware. My favorite part: prices are relatively low, ranging from $15 to $18 per piece.


Thrifted Lemon Sofas are Rad. And so is my Dad. Hey, That Rhymes!

Thursday, November 3rd, 2011

I don’t go thrift shopping as much as I would like, but I do go about twice a year which, coincidentally, coincides with every time my dad comes to town. You see, my dad is a thrift store junkie. An addict. And he’s done it as long as I can remember.

Some of my first memories are of him holding my hand strolling the aisles of every consignment, thrift, and second hand store he could find in the phone book. I loved it. I was a little girl who adored her daddy and wanted to spend every single second with him, not to mention the promise of ice cream that waited for me after we discovered all our special treasures someone else didn’t want. Chocolate malt for him. Bubblegum on a sugar cone for me.

It was an adventure.

As I grew into all things teenager, I became incredibly impatient with the whole process. I didn’t hold his hand anymore and I would sigh and roll my eyes every time he picked up a brass candle stick or pair bookends to explain their art deco lines or the decade they were made. And we didn’t get ice cream anymore. I had places to go. I had friends to see. But we still went, at least once a month. And deep down, I guess I still wanted to go. It was our thing.

And it still is.

I only see my dad a few times a year these days. 1,200 miles and our busy lives separate us. But my dad came to visit for an entire week last week and the first thing out of his mouth after I picked him up from the airport: “Are we going thrift store shopping?”

So one day, while the boys were in preschool, my 70 year dad and I went to every consignment, thrift, and second hand store I could find in my iPhone. I was a girl again who adored her daddy who wanted to spend every single second with him. And we strolled the aisles hand in hand. And I listened happily while he explained the details behind the two paintings he purchased.

And then he bought ice cream. Chocolate malt for him. Bubblegum on a sugar cone for me.

 It was an adventure.

P. S.  And hey! If you ever want super cool stuff – go to the thrift store.  Look at what I found that I totally wish I could have tied to the top of my car and brought home.

thrift store shopping

thrift store shopping

thrift store shopping

thrift store shopping

That’s All. Carry On.

Thursday, December 30th, 2010

I just had to share this fashion forward and affordable home decor collection I discovered while doing some serious late night channel surfing.  Can you believe these pieces come to you courtesy of the home shopping network, QVC?  That’s all.  Carry on.

One For You. Two For Me.

Monday, November 29th, 2010

This time of year drives David crazy.  And it’s not because every one of his co-workers are begging him to buy wrapping paper, popcorn, cookies, and whatever else is in the Red Wheel Fundraising catalog so their kid can go with the school band to Disneyland this summer. 

No, that doesn’t bother him at all.  He just smiles, scribbles his name and address on the order form, writes a check, and voila!  Two weeks later, David drives home with four tins of popcorn, three tubs of cookie dough, two rolls of wrapping paper, and a monogrammed paper weight in a pear tree. 

Seriously, my entire freezer is filled with tubs of cookie dough.  And I don’t even eat cookies.  I mean, I want to eat cookies.  But given that my metabolism seems to be slower than an old lady driving 40 miles per hour in the fast lane while applying lipstick, eating cookies is the last  thing I should be doing.

What does drive David crazy this time of year:  my shopping.

But seriously, when a store is offering their entire inventory at 50% off, with an additional 10% off when you use their credit card, how do you not buy yourself that pretty sweater, beaded headband, and skinny jeans while you’re in there searching for something for your mom, best friend, or sister-in-law?  It’s impossible.  Impossible, I say. 

“I’m actually saving you money,” I smile when David asks how much of the stuff in the shopping bags is for me after a recent afternoon at the mall.

He doesn’t buy it.  He just groans and says, “But you’re birthday is coming up and so is Christmas!”

I know that.  Obviously.  But it’s one of my little quirks he’s just going to have to deal with, just like I deal with his. I mean, when he wonders out loud how many people pee in the shower while he’s taking one himself, it’s not like I get all crazy.  And I know very well what he’s doing while he’s wondering. 

Which reminds me:  during my next Christmas shopping excursion, I should buy myself some shower shoes.

You Say Tomato, I Say Canker Sore.

Sunday, August 1st, 2010

It’s been one week since I shopped at Sam’s Club and popped that huge carton of cherry tomatoes into my cart.  And I’ve been shoving handfuls of the mini fruits in my mouth ever since.  

I eat tomatoes and eggs in the mornings.  I eat tomatoes on salads in the afternoons.  I eat tomatoes and hummus for snacks.  And I eat some sort of tomato side with whatever meal I make for dinners.  But no matter how many fist fulls of the fruits I consume, that tub of tomatoes never ends.  Never.

It wasn’t until Friday when my gums were red and raw and a couple of cankers were created that I began to question all the produce I’ve been pounding.  So I did what any good researcher would do and Googled it. 

I started to type in the three words, ‘are tomatoes acidic’, into the Google tool bar, you know the one.  It’s the one you type your question into and then, in case you’re interested, the search engine gives you the top 10 tomato related questions others have wondered in the resent past. 

And here they are. 

Is it just me, or are you wondering too what is wrong with people?

I have, in the meantime, discovered tomatoes are acidic and can cause raw gums and canker sores when consumed in large quantities.  I guess 40 to 50 cherry tomatoes a day falls into the large quantity category.  Thanks Google for the handy dandy information. 

Now, I just need to Google why people are so obsessed with feeding tomatoes to their dogs.

Everything Skinny Scares Me

Sunday, July 25th, 2010

Everything skinny scares me.  Everything.

Example #1:  Skinny Lattes.  I mean, have you seen the milk used to make that drink?  Some call it skim.  I called it gross.  There’s no way that cloudy water posing as the liquid cows create will ever touch my tongue.  No way.

Example #2:  Skinny Actresses.   Two words:  Lindsay Lohan.  ‘Nuff said. 

Example #3:  Skinny Pants.  Unless you’re 6 foot tall and weigh 98 pounds, no one looks good in skinny jeans, skinny cargos, skinny shorts, or any other item of clothing that calls itself skinny.  No one.

But guess what?  I could be wrong!  (Four words, by the way, my husband has never heard me utter in my life.  And I only write this now in complete secrecy while he sleeps soundly while slobbering next to me because I don’t ever want him to know that I know those four words can coexist.  You understand.) 

Here’s the proof:


While I was perusing pants at Nordstrom’s Half Yearly Sale this afternoon (Yes, ladies!  It’s that time of year again!), I totally rolled my eyes at the idea of even trying on these skinny cargo pants by Sanctuary.  But I grabbed my size anyway and decided since I was already headed to the fitting room to try on a pair of jeans, I would give the cargos a crack, too.

I died, came back to life, and died again after I saw for myself how great these skinny cargos looked.  I could not believe it.  Most of the time, I can’t even get skinny pants passed my calves.  And if I do happen to get them passed my calves, there’s no way I can pull them past my fanny.  And if I do happen to get them past my fanny, there’s no way I can sit down in them.  And if do happen to be able to sit down in them, there’s no way my fanny would actually stay in them.  You see my dilemma.

So, I admit, not everything skinny scares me these days.

But c’mon.  There’s no way I’m changing my mind about skinny lattes or skinny actresses.   I mean, cloudy liquid posing as milk and Lindsay Lohan, right? 



If I Didn’t Think I’d Break a Bone, I’d Buy Them.

Sunday, June 20th, 2010

How awesome are these zipper adorned wedges from Piperlime?  I mean, who doesn’t want to add five inches of fun to their frame?  And the rich cognac color is so yummy.  The only problem:  I think I’d break a bone if I bought them.

Want to Make a Trade?

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

If I had to trade every handbag I own for this one, I think I could.





Husbandism #10

Thursday, December 17th, 2009

David:  “Well, that’s why it’s not called Forever 35.”

What my husband replied when I told him how weird it is that I’m a size 4 and size small at JCrew and a size 8 and size large at Forever 21.”

Don’t Hate Me Because I’m Done Christmas Shopping

Wednesday, November 11th, 2009

Don’t hate me because I’m done Christmas shopping.  I am.  I’m one of those freak shows who likes to have every present purchased and wrapped by Halloween.  If I seem a teeny, tiny obsessive about the deadline, I am.  So much so I started panicking a little when I realized I still had one last person on my list last weekend.  And when I say a little, I mean a lot.  I panic in a such a weird way it would make you extremely uncomfortable and seriously sweaty if I went into detail, so I’ll spare you.  Consider that my Christmas present to you this year.  You’re welcome.


While on my search for my special someone, I came across the perfect present.  The jewelry collection is called Stone and Honey


The pieces are fashioned from Brazilian agate and delicate metal work.  The crisp geometric design combines with the rough-hewn beauty of natural agate for a look that is modern, eye catching, and rich in contrast.



The statement making pendants come in stained glass colors like magenta, blue, brown, or marbled amber.  Small, medium, or large pieces let you decide how grand the statement should be.  And delicate silver or gold chains suspend the stones, which appear to float on the wearer’s chest.



The Stone and Honey collection runs about $100 – $150 per necklace, which may sound a little pricey but each piece is unique and believe me when I say well worth every penny. 

I’ve got the J.Crew Blues

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009

I was headed to the gym a couple of days ago when I decided to pop by the new J.Crew store for a minute.  I was super shocked when the one at the mall closed a few months ago.  That place was always packed with people.  I was just as surprised after flipping through the store’s latest catalog I received in the mail this month.  It stated in teeny, tiny, microscopic print – the kind you need those plastic drug store glasses to read – that I should visit the new location which just opened in my area.  I was all like, what?  A new J.Crew location just opened in my area?  How could I not know that?

My heart started beating a little faster when I saw it for myself.  The catalog was right!  There is a new J.Crew location and here it stands in all its brand new building glory.  I swear I heard singing.  OK, I did hear singing.  I can’t get the song ‘Happy Birthday to You’ out of my head.  My two year old toddler has been singing the catchy tune for weeks and weeks and weeks.  It’s kind of cute the first 200 times you hear it but now let’s just say I’ve been trying to teach the little dude a new ditty. 

I all but skipped into the store in my gym clothes:  sweat pants, t-shirt, ball cap and tennis shoes.  I touch the t-shirts with ruffles – a store employee walks by.  I twirl a pretty necklace between my fingers – a store employee walks by.  I take a turn at the dresses and wonder if I will finally fit the size I want to wear – another store employee walks by.  I’m getting a little peeved.  No one has even said hello or asked if I was looking for something in particular, yet all around me I’m hearing employees chirp greetings at other customers.  I start picking up items to try on.  I think to myself this surely will get some one to run over.  Nope.  I carry a couple of t-shirts, a dress, and a pair of flip flops to the dressing room and let myself in – another employee walks by. 

After trying on everything, I decide I want everything.  I walk to the cash wrap with my items and wait and wait and wait.  I’m getting more and more and more irritated.  I grab a store employee who is about to again just walk by and ask to speak with a manager.  She says she can ring me up. I reply no one will be ringing me up today.  I repeat my original request.  The store employee huffs off.

When the manager arrives, I tell her my tale.  She doesn’t really seem to care.  She doesn’t offer an apology.  She barely even looks at me.  I realize I’m dressed in gym garb, but believe me when I say that I’ve shopped in worse.  At least there is no baby barf on my shoulder and I’m wearing make-up.  Am I so repulsive that my money is no good here?  Not those exact words, but a something fairly similar spewed out my mouth.  The manager’s mouth dropped to the floor and that’s exactly where I left it and the clothes I wanted to purchase.

I’m totally bummed about the whole thing.  J.Crew is my go to store whenever I need something new.  I’m not sure what I’m going to do now.  I guess I’ve got the J.Crew blues.  Hey, maybe that’s the new little ditty I should teach my son. 

I Whan-Eht!

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009

Whenever my 2 1/2 year old son sets his sights on something that would just make his little world go round he chirps, ‘Momma, I whan-eht!’  He says it when he sees a ball.  He says it when he sees a garbage truck.  He says it – or maybe in this particular case – screams it when his baby brother is touching any one of the hundreds of toys we own.  When my biggest boy says he ‘whans-eht,’ he will have it and he will have it now.

I’m proud to say my little apple didn’t fall far from the tree.  There is a ring his momma wants SO bad.  Every time I see it, I think ‘I whan-eht!’


Take a look at this beautiful bauble from jewelry designer Jamie Joseph.  I’ve been drooling over her designs for years and years and years.  Her work is exquisite.  I visit the on line retail store Twist at least once a week to take a peek at the ring that I ‘whan.’ 

I guess I need to start saving my mad money for it.  My husband doesn’t like to hear that I have a mad money stash.  He keeps asking me if that’s the money I’m saving just in case I ever want to leave him.  He doesn’t get it.  Every girl needs a mad money stash.  There’s just absolutely no reason to explain why $528 magically disappeared out of our checking account.  I figure what he doesn’t know doesn’t hurt him, right?

Until I get all the details worked out however, I can totally relate to my son who ‘whans-eht’ all.  Really, doesn’t every one?  It’s just funnier when he says it.