Show some holiday love this “Small Business Saturday”

Thanksgiving is only 15 days away- the official beginning of Christmas shopping madness. I am happy to say that I began hunting for gifts in March- no last minute craziness for me, although I do enjoy it.

However, this season I vowed to shop a little differently. I want to purchase the majority of my Christmas gifts from local businesses.

Small Business Saturday, the Saturday following Thanksgiving, was created as a counterpart to the Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It is a day created to support local businesses that create jobs and boost the economy. “For every $100 spent at a local business, $68 returns to the community,” states Civic Economics.

I understand there is a chance this venture can more costly than purchasing at large corporations and chain retailers, but I also know the positive impact it will have. When I buy from the local boutiques, toy stores, and coffee shops I am helping to embrace what makes my community unique. You can do the same, wherever in the world you live!

The most beautiful, eclectic, unique items can be found when shopping local or small businesses. I recently purchased a woolen snood and knit hat from Posh– a chic boutique in town. I highly recommend visiting if you are in the Rochester area.

posh boutique small business saturday

And hopefully I can continue this shopping habit throughout the year. There are 364 more days in the year filled with other holidays and birthdays that I intend to shop local as well.

shop small business saturday

Will you be showing small businesses some extra love this year?

Peace, love, and fashion happiness,

Lauren

Pleather leggings- yes, you can wear them!

Typically I choose my outfit the night before, a routine I fell into during my first years of college to save a couple extra minutes of sleep the next morning. However, after an exciting, late night the last thing I wanted to do was search through my clothes while dreaming of my pillow.

Riffling through my closet early the next morning, I wasn’t clicking with any of my clothes. I felt extra edgy, what could I wear to represent that?

Motorcycle jacket? Too cold outside at 44 degrees, and that would have made for a chilly walk to work. Studded heels? Nah, I didn’t feel like hobbling into work with blisters. Pleather leggings? YES! That is exactly the piece of clothing I was looking for.

Pleather, also called vegan leather, is the affordable, more comfortable version of leather. It’s definitely having a moment in fashion. The fabric is fun and versatile, especially in the form of leggings. Plus, anyone can wear it! It’s stretchy and breathable, unlike its leather counterpart.

To keep your outfit office appropriate, rather than date night out, pair with more casual pieces- oversized sweaters, subtle sparkle, flats, etc.

I paired a geometric fringed sweater from Forever 21, black pointed flats from DSW, and subtle gold accents with my pleather leggings. The casual pieces toned down the fabric edginess.

fringe sweater, pleather leggings

pleather leggings, flats

Another option is an oversized turtleneck sweater. Why wear typical jeggings or plain leggings? So expected and typical. Instead I spiced up the outfit with sneak peek of pleather- mixing conservative and classic with a little excitement.

turtle neck sweater, pleather leggings

My Bar III pleather leggings were a recent purchase from Macy’s on clearance, and have become a staple in my closet.

So, don’t be scared of pleather leggings. Yes, you can wear them!

Peace, love, and fashion happiness,

Lauren

Never Stop Adding to the Shoe Collection

Every woman has heard it- high heels are nothing but trouble. Deformed feet, back pain, and shortened calve muscles to name a few problems instigated by them.

But, as a 20-something woman I would gladly choose a day of aching feet and lower back pain to wear the beautiful stilettos and wedges gracing my closet. There is a sense of allure and excitement felt when you slip on pair of sky-high heels, ready to face the world.

I have several go-to heels, and I can’t help but search for more! Here are several pairs I’m hoping to add {soon} to my never-ending collection, all within a small budget, except one pair (you always have to dream)…

Jessica Simpson Chandra Mule in New Colbalt- pairs perfectly with bermuda shorts or a skater dress for an evening out.

jessica_simpson_mules

One Little Song White High Heel Sandals– excellent for summer days exploring a new city in crisp, patterned shorts or a romper.

lulus_high_heel_sandals

Steve Madden Stecy Ankle Strap Heels in Rose Gold- now I can take my love for rose gold jewelry to my feet; fantastic for dressing up boyfriend jeans or a LBD.

lulus_rose_gold

Vince Camuto Abbia Booties– the perfect amount of “tough chick” for a rocking day-to-night summer outfit.

vince_camuto_bootie

And for that one splurge… I’ve been dreaming of this pair for years, Christian Louboutin So Kate Pumps in Nude. Nothing screams “I have my life together” like a polished and perfected pair of designer nude pumps.

Christian_Louboutin_Kate

What are types of shoes are you hoping to add to your closet?

Peace, love, and fashion happiness,

Lauren

My new addiction: midi skirts

Even after repeating “I am only here to pick up a birthday gift, I will not buy anything for myself” several thousand times, I still managed to walk out of the mall with two beautiful midi skirts.

Drifting through the mall, my eyes slowly locked onto a gorgeous black midi skirt within a boutique, Posh Love. Lucky for me it was my size and the LAST one! Before checking out, another midi skirt caught my eye. I just couldn’t stop! Two midi skirts later…

Midi-Skirts

Lately, in the summer heat, I have been pairing my midi skirts with crop tops. To be more work appropriate, a crisp button up and sparkly necklace. Either way, the versatility of the midi skirt is amazing.

Black-Midi-Crop-Top

Black-Midi-Button-Up

I better make more room in my closet because I’m addicted.

Patterned dresses: The only geometry I need to know

I was never one for math. I understood the lessons and usually got a decent grade on tests, however, it never tickled my fancy. Nevertheless, when I see complex, geometric patterns on a dress I get more excited than a mathematician solving an impossible quadratic equation. I love pieces of clothing that have stimulation and buzz. Flashy shapes, colors, and textures attract me like Einstein to a mass-energy formula.

Just as every trip to Target, I went in to pick up fruit and cereal, and came out with a cart full of extra items, including a beautiful clearance dress. I was trying hard to avoid eye contact with the women’s clothing racks, despite that out of the corner of my eye I spotted a fabulous black, white, and coral geometric print dress. I slowly approached it, mesmerized by its fantastic pattern, realizing it was my size and at severely reduced price. It was fate. I premiered the dress on date night, paired ever so perfectly with my coral necklace and bracelet.

Geometric-Pattern-DressAlthough you may not be a fan of math, this dress is proof that to always appreciate the beauty of structured lines and shapes found within an astounding geometric patterned piece of clothing. It’s a fabulous, and cheap, trend to give a try!

Peace, love, and fashion happiness,

Lauren

Rainy days and fun umbrellas

Let me explain the weather this past week…

Monday: Rain
Tuesday: Thunder and rain
Wednesday: High winds, and more rain
Thursday: Nonstop downpour of rain
Today: Morning and evening rain

So, how can I dress fashionable for the weather? By adding an adorable umbrella to my outfit!

In a world of black, white, and blue mundane umbrellas bobbing down the street, I like to stand out with bright colors and patterns. I have two umbrellas for my particular outfits and moods: a bright multi-colored polka dot and my great-grandma’s colorful stripped Coach.

Polka-Dot-Umbrella1Rain-Coach-UmbrellaI can remember the excitement I had as a child walking to elementary school with my new Lisa Frank umbrella, basking in all the compliments and jealous looks from other girls. At what age did all the fun umbrellas disappear?

Wandering down the street with an adorable umbrella held above my head sounds like more fun than walking solemnly through the covered skyways; it brings back my inner child. Who doesn’t like to stand out in a world of monotony?

Keep calm and dance in the rain!

Peace, love, and fashion happiness,

Lauren

Where’s my denim dress?

There has been one piece of clothing I’ve been dying to add to my closet; a light-medium wash, 3/4 sleeve denim dress. I have a particular design in my head and a small budget to support it.

The denim dress is a HOT trend right now. Not to mention, it’s versatile and easy, making the perfect addition to my wardrobe. This piece of clothing can be worn relaxed with flats and a scarf to brunch, then dressed up with heels and a sequined clutch to the bar in the evening.

So, here is what my countless hours of online searching have produced:

Kut from the Kloth Denim Dress

Kut-From-The-Kloth-Denim-Dress

Buttoned Denim Shirt DressButtoned-Denim-Shirt-Dress

Two-Pocket Chambray Shirt Dress

Chambray-Shirt-Dress

Liz Claiborne 3Q Sleeve Belted Shirt Dress

Belted-Shirt-Dress

Sami and Dani Pullover Chambray Dress

Pullover-Chambray-Dress

Blue Merona Belted Denim Shirt Dress

Belted-Denim-Shirt-Dress

There’s probably plenty more denim dresses to choose from, however, here’s what fit into my budget and have caught my eye thus far.

Which dress do you prefer? I would love to show off this multitalented trend soon. Plus, I need an excuse to drive to the mall and spend some hard-earned money…

Peace, love, and fashion happiness,

Lauren