30 April 2012

I'm Wishing on the Rainbows that I See

J.Crew Campo de' Fiori dress. Miu Miu patent spectator pumps. Celine Nano mini luggage tote. J.Crew Penelope patent mary janes. Anthropologie Reed shirt dress in red plaid.

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These are just a few of the items on my personal OMG-I-need-them-so-bad-or-my-life-won't-be-complete shopping wishlist. You know that list - those long sought-after items that you either didn't think you needed at the time or waited so long for a deal that you missed it completely.

The stuff that you scour the blog sales and Ebay for - the items that had long since hit sale, and second cuts (and probably third cuts if it had lasted that long) but that you do mental calculations on how much close to retail or over! you'd be willing to pay if you miraculously could get your hands on it again. The dress or skirt or jacket where your one wearable size suddenly stretched out over two - three - four different sizes.

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And then ... one day you may hit the virtual shopping jackpot where your Holy Grail flits by your over the Interwebs. And you squeal and make grabby hands at the monitor and clickety-click your way to a purchase.

And then ... delight of delights? Closet is D O N E? Or more likely for me - utter disappoint?

Case in point - The Anthropologie Field Game cardigan and Anthropologie Greybar coat. I searched for them forever. I ended up purchasing them in a mad swirl of fingers over the keyboard when I found them on Ebay. I got them. Sighed. Tried them on. Realized they were more special in my mind than they could ever turn out in real life. Then never wore either item and in fact ended up selling them both on my blog sale.

I got the grey Field Game cardi, and major props to you ladies who had all looked so super-fantastic in yours, because when I got mine, I could not make it work with anything for the life of me. It was way too busy busy busybusy for me.

Are there any fashionable items that you've missed out on that you are still regretting and on the hunt for? Have you recently found an item that you long-lusted for? If so, did it live up to your mind's expectations?

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Top: LEC gingham poplin (worn here - sim, pricey, as dress)
Skirt: J.Crew ikat dot pencil via Dea's blog sale (sim a-line, pleated, in black, as dress, as romper)
Necklace: Elizajay Charm via Etsy (worn here - sim, in silver, luxe in gold)
Shoes: Sofft ramona II (worn here - sim colorblock)
Clutch: Rebecca Minkoff (worn here - sim, mini, as hobo, as satchel)
Bracelets: Old Navy enamel, Target pearl, F21 stud (sim, sim, sim, sim, sim)

27 April 2012

Another Round of Friday Mocktails

Are you ready for another round of Friday Mocktails? Has anything - or anyone - happened to you in these last few weeks that have driven you out of your normally perfectly composed state of mind?

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Here are bits and pieces of randomness whine from my end these past few weeks -

Out-of-the-blue business trips that required me to pack in about five minutes, which basically meant I was trying to figure out different ways of wearing the same two random tops and bottoms in different professional ways for four days straight. It helped that since I had zero bag space to work with, I felt the uncontrollable urge to pack my neon pink sweatshirt - and its neon tee counterpart. Oh, and I sprained a toe so badly that I couldn't fit into closed-toe shoes, but that's cool, because then everyone got a real good look at my toe in all its swollen shade of blue glory.

We carpooled for a lunch outing last week in a co-worker's truck - a raised F-150 with no floor boards. And I was wearing a pencil skirt. Of course I looked like a lady getting in and out of that thing.

I love you BF. There is sooo much good and smart about you. But why is it that you can never find your own car keys, or sunglasses, or wallet, or a pair of matching socks, or a pen when you need one, your phone, where you set down your coffee, where the remote is ...

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The slow realization that I am not getting any younger, which means though I feel like I have the mind of a 6th grader, unfortunately I don't have the energy or bones of one. Three hour long roadtrips kill me - my back, my butt, my knees.

I had to participate in a telecon sitting in my parked car the other day as I couldn't make it back to the office in time. I had the windows rolled down so I could get some air but I was very evidently in the middle of something - phone on my ear, laptop on. During this call, one of the people in the office I just had the meeting with came out for a ciggie break and walked right up to my car, asked if I was on the phone - yes, I nodded with my phone still to my ear and talking to the people on the other end - and he proceeded to then ask me about my license plate and if I liked my car. Really? Can we seriously do this another time ...?

At the dog park over the weekend, I managed to step on a sharp stick with one foot and stab myself in the other foot with it.

So what about you ladies for this Friday Mocktail session? What do you want to vent about, big or small? Any griping /grumbling / moaning / general mocking you want to share with your fellow commiserators over a virtual round?

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Jacket: F21 (sim, sim, sim)
Top: Zara animal print (worn here - sim, sim, grey)
Jeans: Loft modern bootcut (worn here - sim, sim)
Shoes: Zara lined wedge (worn here - sim, closed-toe, luxe, other colors)
Necklace: c/o JewelMint (worn here - sim, sim, pricey)
Rings: F21 stacked (sim, sim, sim)
Outfit inspired by Peggy

25 April 2012

I'm Bringing Awkward Back!

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 I’m bringing awkward back! Remember my old time Respect the Outfits reader feature? Dependent on the week and the topic, we got to see fellow readers at their more fabulous, loveable, pet-friendly cuddly or ill-timed photo best! Check out some old reader feature posts here, here and here.

I’d like to revive Respect the Outfits as an alternating monthly reader feature. I think it may be a fun way for us to be introduced to a bunch of new blogs and see each other at our fashionable best – or laughable not. To help “relaunch” the feature, I’d like to take us back to the topic that started it all – outfit outtakes!

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Your hair is bouncy and glossy. Your lipstick is shiny smacking new. You've straightened your collar, poofed out your skirt. Hand on hip, straight back, big smile at the camera. Your photographer zooms in or your self-timer beeps away. A milli-second before picture perfection something goes horribly - humorously - wrong.

If you want to participate, it’s easy peasy –
  1. E-mail me at respecttheshoes@live.com with your pics – one of you in your outfit pic best and one of an awkwardly funny outtake from the same shoot (or send just an outtake if you prefer)
  2. Include a link to your original outfit pic if you would like some "link love"
  3. Send your stuff to me by Friday, May 4 – post will go up the next week!
Here's some of me at my "best":


Top: J.Crew sequin stripe (worn here - sim, sim, tank)
Shirt: J.Crew perfect stripe (sim, sim, sim)
Skirt: J.Crew crinkle chiffon (worn here - sim, luxe)
Shoes: Sofft giovanna (worn here - sim, sim, higher)
Necklace: Elizajay Charm via Etsy (sim, gold)
Bracelets: Target pearl, Ebay J.Crew golden stripe (sim, sim, sim, sim, sim)

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Winner, Winner!

Thanks to all your lovely ladies who entered my $50 gift card giveaway! Now without further ado, it is time to announce the winner!

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Based on 167 qualified entries from 169 post comments and 2 FB comments, our calcu-puting little friend, Random.org decided on ... 


Which means the lucky winner is ...


Congratulations, Lauren! Please shoot me an e-mail at respecttheshoes(at)live.com with info on how you'd like to collect your $50 Anthropologie gift card (e-mailed or mailed to you)!

And thanks so much to the rest of you for participating and for coming to visit my little corner of blogdom - I've got loads more randomness bouncing around in my head and fashion concoctions that I look forward to sharing!

24 April 2012

Packing is for the Rats

My apologies for being MIA in blogdom last week, ladies, but an unexpected business trip had me flailing in a lot of ways. I went from thoroughly enjoying a lazy weekend to fighting the virtual fires while on the phone, trying to get myself organized and having one foot out the door all at the same time. I am back en force this week, and look forward to catching up on all your lovely posts soon!

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I usually consider myself a pretty organized packer and am one to always be prepared with my necessities for travel - weather checked, currency converted, assorted chargers and adapters prepped, traveling snacks and amusements within reach, the proper club cards pulled, ID in purse triple-checked, cash for the train out of my wallet and ready to stuff in my pocket.

However, when it comes to my wardrobe, being a color-minded person has its setbacks. I hate over packing and I've tried every packing trick in the book to no avail for me. Planned outfits for me usually means something doesn't end up working out mid-trip and I've got a whole outfit that can do a whole lotta nada. Streamlined color-coordinating pieces that can all go together usually means I end up with one pair of trousers that is supposed to go with everything except I get a rip in the butt on the first day of wear.

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These shoes are surprisingly ridiculously comfy - but egads they make my feet look huge!

Though I feel like I end up on my trips with nothing to wear, I obviously end up scrounging something acceptable together, but I always end up feeling under-accessorized and kind of blah. It is definitely safer and easier for me to be more monochromatic on-the-road, especially when I'm typically in business situations and dealing with people that are older than me. More casual daily office dressing with bright blue platform sandals is one thing when I know what to expect but a black pencil skirt and button-down never seems to fail a situation, albeit it may be a bit yawn-inducing.

What kind of packers are you ladies? Are you streamlined and efficient or do you feel the need to take almost everything just in case? Do you have any tips for successful trip packing?

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Sweater: J.Crew factory ocelot (worn here - sim floral, longer, shawl)
Dress: J.Crew embossed beach (sim, sim, shift, pricey)
Belt: J.Crew metallic skinny (sim)
Earrings: F21 (no longer online, check stores - sim, sim, lighter, fancy)
Shoes: BC Footwear slouch (sim, pricey)

I'll also be announcing the winner of the $50 gift card shortly - stay tuned!

23 April 2012

It's a Matter of Time

I am an incredibly organized person when it comes to my job. I make lists ad nauseum, folder away my e-mail communications, bring personal schedule copies and a personal briefing folder with me whenever I travel. When it comes to my personal life though, I am not the same person than I am for that job - or rather, I am often the very same person, which is why I am a mess sometimes with my personal life.

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I grew up in a very straight-laced "follow the rules" household, which meant that being dedicated to your job was priority number one. Not being able to make it to a family activity and not getting out of the office early just because was an understood excuse. You worked your butt off to keep your job and sacrificed to support your loved ones - that was how you showed your appreciation to everyone.

So my parents worked their butts off to provide for us kids. My sis and I may not have had the opp to take family holidays to Disneyworld but we never went hungry and always had new clothes and shoes for the schoolyear. My dad worked six days a week so most of our "quality time" together was out running errands on Sunday for the household. I took tennis lessons but my parents were never able to attend a match. And it was fine for me - I got it.

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Unfortunately this meas that Adult Lisa is great at her job, but in the juggling game of personal vs. work, unfortunately personal usually ends up losing out most of the time. I sometimes feel like the childless version of Kate Reddy from I Don't Know How She Does It, except that instead of trying to fit everything into my day, I tend to just miss the personal things. I've often been told to take a breath, it's OK to turn that phone off, your loved ones are more important than a job - and I know that, but it's always a struggle for me to follow through!

How do you ladies manage your time between your career and family/friends? Are you able to "turn it off" when it comes to your career?

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Top: J.Crew perfect boatneck (worn here - sim, cas, dressed up)
Skirt: J.Crew sovereign paisley (sim, luxe)
Belt: J.Crew skinny metallic (sim)
Shoes: c/o ShoeMint rosemary (worn here - sim, sim, grey, low)
Necklace: nutcase fashion via Etsy (worn here - sim, simpricey)
Bracelet: F21 faceted cube (sim)

13 April 2012

It's Time for a Respectful Giveaway!

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Hey ladies! 500 posts just blew right past me a few days ago and I consider that a a blogging milestone for me. I've said this before, but I still can't believe that I would be blogging for as long as I've been - and enjoying it! Plus I honestly am thankful every day for all you lovely ladies who read my blog. Your stylish support and wicked humor has been an inspiration and delight, so I thought a little gift-giving is in order.

One lucky lady has the opportunity to win one $50 gift card of your choice to either:

Anthropologie
J.Crew
Ann Taylor

Entering is easy:
  1. Be a public follower of respect the shoes via GFC, Bloglovin, Facebook or Google + (buttons on the upper right corner)
  2. Leave a comment with which gift card you would choose and let me know how you follow
If you want an extra entry, blog about this giveaway and leave a link as a separate comment.


And that's it. Giveaway closes on Sunday, April 22 at 10:00 p.m. EST and a winner will be selected at random shortly after that. Giveaway entries are open to everyone, as long as your selected retailer has stores or ships to your country!

Tiny print: Like everything else in my closet, this giveaway is sponsored solely by the contents of my wallet and the control of my mouse click-happy hands.

12 April 2012

Dressed by Others?

You think this has nothing to do with you. You go to your closet and you select ... that lumpy blue sweater, for instance because you're trying to tell the world that you take yourself too seriously to care about what you put on your back. But what you don't know is that that sweater is not just blue, it's not turquoise, it's not lapis. It's actually cerulean ... That blue represents millions of dollars and countless jobs and it's sort of comical how you think that you've made a choice that exempts you from the fashion industry when, in fact, you're wearing the sweater that was selected for you by the people in this room from a pile of "stuff."

- Miranda Priestley, The Devil Wears Prada (film)

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Putting this outfit was a bit of a moment for me, as I've realized that I haven't really dressed in this style for almost half a year now. I am not sure if that is a sign of me maturing sartorially or my tastes are just different now.

I do sometimes wonder how much of my fashion choices are influenced by forces outside of myself  - magazines, retailers, style blogs - and as a gal who still considers herself trying to find her own style, I would think that I'm probably greatly influenced by others.

Through periods of last year I fell into full-on rhapsody over certain brands (hey, Anthropologie, I'm looking at you). I found myself falling for the sale cycle hype, buying pieces because they were popular, hunting and scavenging for things. Did I adore the brand? Of course - and still do. Did I get swept up into the fanaticism and make decisions that I probably wouldn't have on my own? Absolutely.

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I think the Anthroholic scandal (you can read a pretty thorough recap of the happenings from JG here) was a rude awakening for me on how influenced I was on my style choices at the time. Granted I wasn't affected directly, but it left a bad taste in my mouth on how easily I went with the flow of things for the sake of fashion. Unfortunately I wasn't alone in the feeling, as in the aftermath a lot of my favorite style blogs decided to go dark.

So does this mean that between last fall and now that I've finally "found myself" and my more streamlined (I think) style? Or did I just end up finding another brand or style inspiration to emulate? Going back to Anthropologie as an example, I find myself buying less from the brand now because I don't listen to the hype over certain pieces or styles as much, and choose what I really like and would wear. I've since sold a lot of my older Anthro brand pieces on my blog sale.

But as I've been buying less Anthro, my purchasing at J.Crew and Zara have picked up. I'm all about trying new trends (hello neon!) that come up in pop culture. I've tried piling on the arm candy (do I blame Man Repeller or Atlantic-Pacific for that?). On occasion, I still find myself hunting items down that I've seen on another blogger or in a magazine.

What do you think about your own style choices? How influenced by others do you think your sartorial choices are? Is influence a bad thing or is that just part of the fun of fashionable experimentation?

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Shirt: LEC gingham poplin (worn here - sim, sim)
Sweater: Gap (worn here - sim, sim, dotted)
Skirt: Parameter via Anthropologie apothecary (worn here - sim, as dress, pencil)
Brooches: blinkeye & lilywinkel via Etsy (worn here & here - sim, sim)
Shoes: Sam Edelman randall wedge (sim peep, floral)

10 April 2012

Peace it Out

I think for those us who don't live alone, we always walk a fine line when it comes to cohabitating peacefully with other human beings. We all have our own minds and ideas on what's important in the household and what isn't. Which often means that people disagree. But unless you like living in a perpetual fight club, I think to keep the peace there's got to be a whole lotta compromise that goes on.

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Take myself for example. I know, I know, I'm so darn right near-perfect, why would anyone think of disagreeing with me, you ask - but on the rare occasion my absolute home perfection can border on the slight obsessive. Could you keep a straight face reading that, because I sure couldn't.

In the living room when watching TV, I am a complete remote hog. I need to know what is going on all channel at all times (I don't want to miss out!) so during commercial breaks, I am whizzing around the guide channel trying to better-deal myself. I have a habit of picking up the remote and switching channels if BF walks out of the room - even just to use the bathroom - so the remote usually cuddles with me on the couch. Thankfully BF is not a big sports fanatic or we would have been all out brawling by now!

I also HAVE to eat. So when we are deciding on where to go, BF has learned to pick up the hint (though honestly I didn't know I was being all passive aggressive dropping it) that if I'm recommending a place or type of food, if I mention something more than once, that's where I want to go. Even if I say I don't care. So good on my sweetie for reading me better than I do myself.

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What about my cohabitating buddy? Well, BF can get obsessive with new hobbies. And when he's all in, it's best just to leave him alone, even if it is 4am on a Tuesday and he's still up. Like video games - Call of Duty ruled his life for a while. Then it was learning all the ins and outs of poker. And most recently? Checking out conspiracy theory videos on YouTube.

Also, when we go out together, BF also almost always drives. He says it is because he likes the ride of his SUV better than my regular-sized vehicle, but I am convinced he thinks I drive like a maniac. I  really don't ... for the most part, anyways.

For peace in the household, what matter do you "let" your loved ones win?

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Top: J.Crew tippi (worn here - sim, simcasual)
Skirt: J.Crew dorrie (worn here - factory, sim, sim, sim)
Necklace: nutcase fashion via Etsy (sim, gentler, pricey)
Bracelets: F21 & Target (sim, sim, bling-y, sim, sim)
Shoes: Zara lined wedge (worn here - sim, rubber, in nude, no strap, luxe)

09 April 2012

A Wintergreen Snooze

Hey ladies! This past week had been an inadvertant bloggy absence due to work being all-consuming. I flew down to Texas for a conference and meetings and aside from being "on" pretty much around the clock, got to experience my first tornado warning and evacuation - and huddling in the ladies room for over an hour was a nice break, especially when someone broke out a bag of Otis Spunkmeyers and saved the day.

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My Type-A/OCD personality makes me a natural crazy listmaker, so when work goes into overload, my lists go into overdrive. I always carry a notebook with my work project to-do list, plus daily stickies with priorities for each day - that is the standard. There's just something really satisfying about crossing out something that has been completed, it's like striking out the worry of it from my brain - there must be other listmakers that understand.

However when the schedules get crazy, I not only keep my regular projects list and daily stickies, but I employ a written out hour-by-hour schedule, reminders on my Blackberry calendar, plus about a million loose hotel-provided note pad pages that get updated and tossed about around every 30 minutes. I can't trust my brain to remember things so I become a tree killer. That and pretty much everything that is actually about me or my life usually gets tossed to the side.

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So when I came home Friday afternoon, what did I do? The one time I felt like I needed all week. Took a nap! And Saturday afternoon? Took a nap. There's nothing like rewarding myself with some serious snooze time on the couch with the TV on low, the pup snuggled down and the sun still streaming in.

When you've got too much on your plate and not enough hours in the day, how do you prioritize? And how do you keep yourself sane despite the stress?

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Dress: J.Crew factory hideaway (sim maxi)
Shirt: LEC stretch poplin (worn here - sim)
Belt: Deena & Ozzy by UO stretch (worn here - sim, simpler)
Shoes: c/o ShoeMint rosemary (worn here - sim, sim)
Necklace: Anthropologie tinsley strung (worn here - sim, sim, pricey)
Bracelets: Target (sim, sim)
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