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My obsession: Glasses. Shopping online @ ZenniOptical

April 27, 2011 3 comments

Some people have a shoe obsession, some a jeans obsession or jewelry obsession. I think I might be have an addiction to prescription eye glasses.

Don’t laugh. I’m serious.

Two years ago if a friend would have confided this in me I would have looked them in the eyes and told them to head over to Nordstrom or Neiman Marcus and pick up an expensive clothing addiction. At least that way they’d have a bit more to show for the hundreds of dollars per item they were spending.

But I admit it now and I’ve accepted it. My name is Bee and I’m addicted to glasses. More accurately, I’m addicted to cheap prescription glasses. Sure you could walk into your local eye doctors office and pickup the latest Fendi or Gucci glasses for $300, $400 or more depending on Read more…

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Beyond [Cute] on the Rack

April 12, 2011 Comments off

We all know about Gilt or at least you should. It brings you deep discounts on designer clothes, accessories, home, vacations and so on. There’s half a dozen other sites out there as well. One of those sites is Beyond the Rack. (You should know this site too.) At any given time each site will have 30+ different sales going on with more starting the following day. Usually at some annoying Eastern Standard Time. Going through each listing to determine what they offer whether it’s shoes, watches, jackets, jeans or an assortment of clothes is unbelievably time consuming.

So let me save you a bit of time. These sales are going on right now. Let’s just say for the most part the prices are amazing (I probably wouldn’t dish out the dough for the leggings-but they are super cute). These sales end in 20-44 hours and sizes are going quickly. But that just means new sales will open up afterwards.

Beyond cute on the rack

Cabi in-home Fashion Shows; It’s the Avon and Partylite of Clothes

March 11, 2011 Comments off

Recently I had the opportunity to go to my first intimate clothing party. My friend and fellow AAU student, Lauren invited me to accompany her a clothing party being hosted by her friend Barb, to check out the Spring Collection by CAbi being shown by consultant Novelett Cotter. I must have been living in the dark somewhere, because at first didn’t realize we actually got to try the clothes on! So… much like MaryKay, this would be a “get to touch” and try-it-out kind of event. Sweet! It’s like an adult version of dress-up, except we can actually get our own copies of outfits we like.

 

Novelett next to the Cabi Logo and the oodles of clothes she brought

Novelett next to the Cabi Logo and the oodles of clothes she brought

But what is CAbi? I didn’t really know. Of course I didn’t say yes right away, I needed to see what I was getting myself into. Ugly clothes are just not something I want to subject myself to. Neither is a session of high pressure sales; it’s uncomfortable. It’s like being in a store with an over-attentive sales associate while you try on a dozen items only to find one you like. All the while the sales associate is just staring at you. No, thank you. Just thinking of the worst case scenarios worried me, it was definitely time to do my research.

Turns out a couple of minutes of looking at the CAbi website put my fears to rest. It took a bit more digging to figure out where CAbi came from, luckily that’s where Novelett came in.

CAbi stands for Carol Anderson by Invitation and that Carol Anderson’s designs used to be in Nordstrom and boutiques but she wanted more freedom to design for the buyers. With just a handful of associates and friends, she decided to start CAbi. Today they have nearly 3,000 consultants that allow women to have personal shopping experiences that include a glass of wine or three. After reading that and watching the Experience Video, CAbi looked like a fun and relaxing event. And by this point I had already checked out the clothes so I knew they had piqued my curiosity.

The Spring Lookbook is young and fresh for the most part. It has some cute cuts: nice asymmetrical angles (I love asymmetrical-love it), great flowing aspects (perfect for all body types) and interesting magnitudes of combination (versatility is important!) that can be made between pieces. I liked that they played with color and show how the clothing looked on these women not just the traditional models.

It's refreshing to see how versatile the clothes are, I mean that's what a collection is really about--being able to mix & match *everything*. Images taking separately from CAbi and recompiled.***

The party was held in a very nice real estate office in Wallingford; the room where the gathering was held was set up much like a meeting only there were bottles of wine, dishes of fruit, vegetables, crackers & cheese and other delights strewn across the main back table. And in the front of the room was a very large, very full, very covered rack of clothes. My first thought after seeing the rack of clothes was, “Oh this was going to be good.”  And if not I could always fall back to the hors d’oeuvre and wine table. ;P

Now I’m sure that this would have had a more intimate, bonding feel to it if it had taken place in someone’s living room, sitting room, basement, garage or (if it ever gets warm in Seattle again) patio; but once we were trying things on there was a type of bonding–the kind you get when you’re standing in a dressing room and 6 ladies come out at the same time to ask “How’s this look?” So that was a nice thing about having it in the office building– a large place to try on clothes.

 

Just a few outfits from the Domestic CEO "collection" or "page" in the look book. It's really amazing the difference that can be made by taking an item off a hanger and putting it on a person.

Because this was done as an after work event, once everyone had a chance to get introduced and have some food and wine, Novelett took us quickly through the collections. She gave us some really fun details about the garment pieces and what they were made of, how they fit and ideas for mixing & matching. One of the nicest things about CAbi is the ease of maintaining it, out of the entire collection only 4 pieces are not machine washable.

After each collection was shown it was time to have at it! The possibility of sitting at the hors d’oeuvre table was out of the question. Actually the moment Novelett said we could try the clothes on I don’t think anyone noticed that there still was a table with wine or food on it.

Though in those first minutes some of the ladies were a bit timid, others like my friend Lauren headed straight for specific garments like we were on Supermarket Sweep. Before I knew it half the women that were there had disappeared from the room. I had already asked, I mean begged, Lauren to be my beautiful model, and she really did quite an amazing job.

So we started trying stuff on. Some of the pieces surprised me because of how light and soft they were. I would expect a jacket and find a sweater, and then remind myself that it was spring. But looking at them gave the illusion of a sturdy piece so that was pretty intriguing. Anyway on to the clothes!

Lauren has the lace tee ($79) on in the above photo, even though I’m not a fan of white, I absolutely loved this top because of the bottom band and the way that it sits around the waist. I think it looked great, not just on Lauren, but on everyone that tried it on.* This particular one was too big for her, but even at just one size too big it gives a relaxed feel, something that makes it look very comfy.

The striped sweater  is called “The Flirt” ($89) why I’m not sure, but it was just too adorable-very girly. I thought it was shaped well in the v-cardigan style, the ruffles were super cute and the cross striping gave her the illusion of more curves. I don’t know what it would do to someone who already had ample curves in the waist area though, it’s definitely not shown on anyone who wasn’t model size on the website and I didn’t see anyone at the party try it on. I didn’t think to ask at the time either.

In this third photo Lauren is wearing the crochet sweater called “Teacher’s Pet Sweater” ($108) it has a beautiful large diamond crocheted pattern open pattern on the back. This sweater looked absolutely amazing on her with the burgundy top she wore that evening and it went perfectly with the CAbi skirt found in the next photo. In that photo she is also wearing the “One Button Cardi” ($89) which wasn’t one of our favorites-though I love the color, and the “Floral Bubble” ($74) top with flowers on the left side it had sheer shoulders making it interesting for us to get creative with bra straps. But I definitely loved the way the bottom of this top gathered. And then there is the floral skirt.

I love this skirt, it’s called the “O’Hara Skirt” ($89), the floral print, cream base and the details of lace along the hem and waistband really appealed to me. But the length is too long for my liking, even as we watch longer dresses and skirt sashay down the catwalks for Spring, my barely 5’6″ frame hates feeling cut off right below the knees. Still that didn’t stop me from asking Lauren to try it on, it looked fantastic on her and along with the Teacher’s Pet Sweater she ordered it. So even though I hated the length while loving the color and style I’m still taking credit that she found it. She told me later that she wouldn’t have tried it on if I hadn’t asked.

Which I actually ran into a similar situation and I’ll tell you about it…. in just a bit.

I tried on a few jackets and tops the first one I tried was the yellow Daisy Jacket ($148). Maybe it was the size (too big) or what I had tried it with (the Liberty Blouse ($74) trust me it was cute), but the jacket just wasn’t working with my completion. The blouse on the other hand very cute, though it does *not* work as a dress. (Daisy Jacket & Liberty Blouse are not shown)

So once we got past that little jump of color… I dove into a sea of unknown territories. Seriously, I was a bit scared.

As I’ve said before– I’m not into the color white, I think it’s challenging to pull off. Some people are meant for it, others are not. I’m one of the not meant for it. Above I have on the “Ruffle Up Jacket” ($128) and the Cluster Tunic ($79). This linen jacket is really fun to look at-I just really liked the one sided ruffle and is more of a light beige color than the white that is showing up, but even with the interesting one-sided ruffle and the edgy angled front (to see it open click on the link- It’s hot.), my biggest complaint is that it comes in that color. If it was available in say a navy blue or even a rich purple, green, etc I would have loved it instantly.

Originally, I was dying to get my hands on the red & white striped Forget Me Not Tank ($59), because the stripes were varied in width and spacing and I thought it might be flattering.. you get the picture… It wasn’t. But I had tried it on with the white jacket shown above, the Gabrielle Cardigan($118) and I really liked the way that jacket looked or so I though. The striped tank was making it hard to tell, clearly my composition skill failed me in pairing those two. I had to find a top to put on under it: something else, anything else. The only other top in the restroom at the time was this “Printed Surplice Tank” ($54) and oh gee I though I had just found the loudest garment out there.

I was worried but I tucked it into this super cute basic and classy skirt and it turns out it looked super cute, or at least Lauren & I thought so. It’s amazing, not in 100 years would I ever have pulled this top off of a hanger, model or out of a closet on my own.

When we got back to the room, I talked to Novelett about my experience with the “floral” tank and it was kind of cool to hear that others have felt the same way when she’s recommend garments to try on or they’ve pulled them off on a whim. Guess I need to take more “color” risks in my shopping habits.

Going to the CAbi party was fun, I didn’t buy anything but not once did I get that uncomfortable feeling like I was supposed to and there are definitely a few pieces that I would enjoy wearing over and over. And a few more that I missed out trying on–I’d go back to another party to finish trying them on. 😉

 

 

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*Note: I actually didn’t get around to trying the white lace tee on. So I don’t know if it looks good on *everyone*. 😉

***All photos not sourced to another site were taken by ManicDesigns.net.***

Etsy Jewelry Shop Review: Hot Chick Physics

March 7, 2011 Comments off

First I need to brag and show off my newest most amazing accessory:

Tied up in a bow- Hot Chick Physics Rose Ring.

As you can see from the photos, it’s a beautiful pink detailed ring on a bed of thorns. I was relieved when I went to put it on and found that it was adjustable–I could try it out on my middle finger and put it to the ultimate test. Would it look good on the finger where nothing in the stores ever looks good?

A pink rose & thorns ring from Hot Chick Physics rests on painted dress.

You see, I have a very hard, no, make that an IMPOSSIBLE time finding rings that I like for my middle or index fingers. It just doesn’t happen. But I put it on and it looked!! The first ring ever to just fit and be there without looking awkward or out of place. I actually haven’t taken it off except to sleep and shower.

A close up side view of the ring's detail.

You’re probably wondering what I’m talking about or where I’m going: well let me introduce you to a local jewelery and hair accessory designer that works with resin, miniature items beads and everyday objects to create fun, entertaining and conversational pieces.

As I reported earlier, on Thursday (March 3rd 2011) I attended RAW:Seattle where a very select few local artists displayed their art throughout the evening. One artist was Hot Chick Physics a jewelry hair accessories collection sold on Etsy.com, created and designed by Tonjia Atomi. Read more…

Chic, Fashionable and Funky Finds at Momo in the Seattle International District.

August 20, 2009 Comments off
Lei Ann and Tom, owners of Momo Seattle

Lei Ann and Tom, owners of Momo Seattle

Momo Seattle was the “it” stop during Seattle’s International District Art Walk on Saturday. In addition to the unique merchandise continuously available, Becky Sullivan and Laura Castellanos were the featured designer and artist, respectively. The atmosphere was inviting, warm and fashionable.

Snugly centered on the northern corner of Jackson and 6th, Momo is a delightful surprise. Inside you will find beautifully crafted clothing, accessories and home décor from local as well as international artists and designers. For the Art Walk the owners Lei Ann Shiramizu and her husband Tom offered sangria and hors d’oeuvres while playing delightful and relaxing music. The store was a buzz with admiration for the art inside drawing a decent crowd through out the 5pm-8pm Art Walk. Read more…

Fashion; Film In a Dustbowl: A website and online boutique review.

July 7, 2009 Comments off

Looking back at the styles fashion has gone through in the last 150 years, it’s easy to see the dramatic changes made at the beginning of the 20th century. During the 1930s women’s fashion seemed to be heading away from the progression of the 1920s. Foregoing the straight waist boyish-look for a more shapely and less glamorous style; women adopted to the Great Depression by wearing clothing that was easier to maintain and less glitzy. This came about for a number of reasons.

To explore the driving factors behind the styles in this decade lets enter the website of Winifred and Bane, a vintage boutique (http://winifredandbance.com/1930s-fashion/) operated by Delilah Carter. Her offerings are available in store and online, but the real gems to be had are the background stories associated with each era of clothing she sells. Read more…

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