Easy Ways to Spruce Up Your Summer Wardrobe, Day 5

Day 5 – 10 Tips to Building a Better Summer Wardrobe

So I had a few ideas floating around in my head about what I wanted my last fashion post of the week to be about, but it was just too darn hard to decide!  So, rather than choosing one, I decided to combine tid-bits all of my favorites into one!

(A picture from our recent Honeymoon to St. Lucia!) 8)

My Top 10 Tips

1.  Look through your closet for clothes you wore last summer. See if they still fit, are still in style, and are in good condition.  If not, consider donating them! 🙂

2.  Break out the brights! Think colorful jewelry such as hoop earrings & bracelets, belts, scarves, and bags. If you’re short on these items, consider checking out stores like Claire’s Accessories, Aldo Accessories, Target, etc.  You can easily find cute, inexpensive jewelry, bags and accessories.  Remember, this stuff isn’t so much about the “quality” – cheap means you can go more for “quantity” with this fun stuff!

3. Don’t stay prisoner to your favorite black leather bag.  Switch things up with a more neutral color, woven straw, or brightly patterned bag to “go with the flow” of the season.

This is a Melie Bianco Rosette with Leaves Hobo.  I LOVE Melie Bianco bags, and have purchased them in the past.  They’re GREAT quality and I would highly recommend them!

4. Invest in a flowery, flowing, printed sundress for a classic, effortless summer look. A dress can take you to dinner by accessorizing with heels and a shawl, out with friends by pairing with flat sandals & fun jewelry, or to work with a tailored jacket or cardigan over it.  The possibilities are ENDLESS!

I found this dress at American Eagle – super cute!  If you want to check it out, click here.

5. Purchase a pair of “where anywhere” white pants.  This is a summer staple item that I can’t do without! Choose them in fabrics like cotton with a little stretch or denim, and pair them with a bright t-shirt for a more casual look or a floral tank for a dressier night out.

LOVE these white linen pants from Gap.  You can check ’em out for yourself here!


6. Make sure your summer wardrobe includes basic cotton tees and tanks which can be paired with jeans or shorts.  One of my favorites: Old Navy Long Perfect Tanks in EVERY color!

7. Summer hats can be super cute, while also protecting your skin and hair from the sun.  These are great for days where you know you’re going to be outside for a while.

Here’s a cute hat from Gap that I found.


8. Find the perfect swimsuit to get ready for the beach or pool parties. Purchase a versatile cover-up that can take you to the pool and lunch.

For a quick, totally adorable cover up, try a sarong like this one from Old Navy!

9. Compliment your summer look with stylish sunglasses to keep you from squinting and getting crow’s feet around your eyes, and to protect those peepers!  Make sure to choose a frame that will be flattering for your face shape.

Yup, that’s Me…SUPER cheesin’! 8)

10. Keep your look polished with the right shoes. Strappy heeled sandals are a MUST for summer.  Also to keep in mind: gladiators, flip flops (Hellooo, 2 for $5.00 at Old Navy!), chunky wedges, and canvas sneakers.

Here’s a look at some of my favorite summer shoes…ENJOY! 😀


 

 

I LOVE SHOES!! I definitely get my love of shoes from my Mom 🙂  Now, here’s my new, FAVE pair!!!…

How CUTE are these?!?  They’re actually the shoes that I’m going to be wearing for my friend Joelle’s wedding, which isn’t until October…I have a feeling they might have to be “broken in” a bit before then! 😉

Well, that does it for this week’s Summer Wardrobe fashion tips! 😀

I really hope that you all enjoyed reading through everything, since I know I had a really fun time posting them all!  If you have any questions, comments, or feedback in general, PLEASE feel free to let me know!

Would you like to see more of this stuff????

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Easy Ways to Spruce Up Your Summer Wardrobe, Day 4

Day 4 – Recycle Those Old Jeans!

Let’s face it, we’ve all got at least one pair of jeans sitting in our closet that we won’t wear for some reason or another…“They just don’t look right…”, “They’re a MESS at the bottom…”, “Too many holes…”

Well, don’t keep letting them sit there and collect dust…break out the scissors and make something new!

Cutoff shorts are super trendy this season, so why not take advantage of this ZERO cost way to add another piece to your summer wardrobe!

I decided to start with an old pair that have been lying around in the closer for quite a while…

All you need is a ball point pen, a ruler, and some scissors.  Make sure to measure them on your body, as well as off, because you want to make sure they’re an appropriate length.

I decided to try cutting a little lower than my mark lines, just in case my measurements were a little off.   

Remember: You can always go back and cut more, but you can’t get back what you took off!

I put them back on and decided that for now, I’m going to keep them where they are!

After cutting them, you can throw them in the wash to get a nice fray at the bottoms if you’d like.  OR, try cuffing them, which is what I did, and you’ve got yourself some NEW shorts! 🙂

So I started thinking more about the topic of shorts as I was prepping this post, and I thought I would share a few more helpful hints for pulling off one of the summer seasons’ most popular trends.  It’s not always as easy as you think!

DO’S & DON’TS OF SHORTS

DO try out the denim cutoffs…they’re so “old-school classic” and look awesome with just about anything.

DO invest in crisp, tailored summer white shorts.  You can take these shorts and pair them with anything from a simple tank or an old t-shirt, and you’ll still look great!

DO balance out a flowy top with straight-leg shorts.  Thigh-high shorts (so you can see them under your top) leave things fitted on the bottom, which help keep a flowy top from looking too sloppy.

DON’T let anyone be able to see the pockets hanging out the bottom of your shorts.  That’s a RED FLAG that those puppies are too short.  Think of pockets as panty lines…they should stay invisable at all times. 😉

DON’T be afraid to have fun with color!  Make sure you have your basics first (white, tan, denim), then see what else you can bring into play in the wardrobe.  If you’re going to invest, make sure they’re a pair that you’ll get your money’s worth out of.

DO pay attention to your shape and what looks best on YOU.  You might have a friend that looks smashing in a pair of bermudas, but not so much on you.  If you’re going for high-waisted shorts, keep them short (not mid-length).  Proceed with caution on floaty shorts; the less structured the cut, the more your legs are going to flaunt.  Balloon shorts can also be tough; shorts that slightly taper out at the hem are friendlier to all figures.

Here’s a couple of my favorites you can check out:

White Shorts

Banana Republic Petite Roll-Up Short – $39.50

The Limited Boyfriend Jean Short – $44.50

Express Cotton Sateen Military Short – $39.50

Denim Shorts

Forever 21 Distressed Cutoff Shorts – $17.80

So now go check your closets and get cutting! 😀

Do you think you’ll give this trend a try??

Easy Ways to Spruce Up Your Summer Wardrobe, Day 3

Did you completely fall in love with last year’s maxi dress trend?  I know I sure did! 🙂

Here’s one that I bought from Target for $17.99 last year!

And here’s another one of my FAVORITES that I found last year at Forever 21, for a steal of only $21.99!  Can you believe it???

Well, LUCKILY, the maxi dress is still “in” (I already bought one from Old Navy for less than $20!), but this year, try adding a new twist to it…dress it up with a jean jacket!  We’ve all got one lying around in the closet somewhere, don’t we?

Just slip one over last year’s maxi dress, and VOILA, you’ve got a brand-new look for ZERO MOOLA! 😀

Now, just in case you haven’t quite jumped on the maxi dress bandwagon yet, I went searching for some nice, affordable maxi dresses that you can get for under $50.00.

Forever 21 Knit Basic Maxi Dress$12.50 <— For that price, I’d get one in each color! 😉

Kohl’s Apt. 9 Leaf Halter Maxi Dresson sale for $34.99

Volcom Detroit City Maxi Tube Dress$50.00

AB Studio Braided Maxi Dresson sale for $37.99

Forever 21 Printed Striped Maxi Dress – $26.90

Forever 21 Pocket Front Maxi Dress – $24.80 (WOW!)

Mmmm…Margarita Cake!

I skipped my normal BodyAttack class at the gym tonight so I could come home to start getting some things ready for a little Cinco de Mayo celebration that Jay and I are having tomorrow!  First on the agenda…Margarita Cake! 😛

Here’s the all-stars of this recipe!

Before making the cake, you have to crush up some pretzels and mix them up with some sugar and melted butter.  Ohhh myyy… 😉  Then press them into the bottom of a 9×13 pan.

Then it’s time to mix up the cake!  Check out the fresh lime zest! 🙂

Pour it right on top of the candied pretzels, and pop it in the oven.

After it’s cooled, frost it with a little whipped topping & some pretty limes, and you’ve got yourself a Margarita Cake!

Margarita Cake (inspired by this Betty Crocker recipe)

1 ½ cups coarsely crushed pretzels

½ cup sugar

1/3 cup butter or margarine, melted

1 box white cake mix

1 ¼ cups bottled nonalcoholic margarita mix

1/3 cup applesauce

1 tablespoon grated lime peel (about 1 lime)

3 egg whites

1 container (8 oz) frozen whipped topping, thawed

Additional grated lime peel, if desired

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 350°F (or 325°F for dark or nonstick pan). Grease bottom only of 13×9-inch pan with shortening and lightly flour (or spray bottom with baking spray with flour).
  2. In medium bowl, mix pretzels, sugar and butter. Sprinkle evenly on bottom of pan; press gently.In large bowl, beat cake mix, margarita mix, applesauce, 1 tablespoon lime peel and the egg whites with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds. Beat on medium speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour batter over pretzel mixture.
  3. Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until light golden brown and top springs back when touched lightly in center. Cool completely, about 2 hours. Frost with whipped topping; sprinkle with additional lime peel. Store covered in refrigerator.

I can’t WAIT to dig into this tomorrow! 😛

For dinner tonight, Jay said he felt like PIZZA again, soooo…on the grill it went!  To see more of the process of how this is done, check out this post!

In true Horan fashion, “His & Hers” pizzas were formed. 🙂

Jay went with a BBQ Chicken pizza, which had garlic, red onions, chicken, bbq sauce, mozzarella & cheddar cheeses.

I decided to go with a veggie pizza of garlic, fresh & diced tomatoes, red & green bell pepper, red onion, mozzarella cheese, all sprinkled with some dried basil & oregano.  Both pizzas got the “garlic” treatment of fresh minced garlic, a drizzling of garlic oil brushed on, as well as some garlic powder on the crust.  Umm…does anyone have a mint? 😉

I had 2 pieces of my pizza, along with a bite of the hubby’s…it was SO GOOD! 😛

As soon as we sat down for dinner tonight, our power went out! GRRRR >:-( Luckily after about an hour it came back on, so it gave me a little time to some more reading of my book.  I’ve already gotten through Part 1, and came across some very interesting facts; some of which I can relate to my own eating habits!  Nonetheless, I’m very intrigued by this book so far!

I hope you guys are enjoying the first 2 days of my Summer Wardrobe tips!  They’ll be back again tomorrow afternoon! 😀  This evening, I’m enjoying a small serving of white chocolate sugar free jello pudding in order to keep my sweet tooth in check after making that cake and not being able to sample any! 😛

Are you celebrating Cinco de Mayo??? 😀

Easy Ways to Spruce Up Your Summer Wardrobe, Day 2

Day 2 – Change Up Your Lengths…Without Touching the Sewing Machine!

Hemlines are always changing: pants, capris, bermuda shorts, “short” shorts, knee-length skirts, “mini” skirts…the list goes on!  Well before you go buying a new pair of (fill in the blank here), see what you can do with what you’ve already got!  The key here: Hemming Tape!


Hemming tape is a kind of heat-activated tape that allows you to create a temporary, new hem to an article of clothing.  Using hemming tape is fairly easy to do, and allows you to keep going back and making changes because the tape is removable.  Think of the possibilities…

  • Turn an old knee-length dress into a brand new “mini” skirt.
  • Liven up a boring, straight leg pair of jeans, by making them into cute capris!
  • Got a pair of dress pants you LOVE but can’t wear them with flats because they drag?  Fix that hem to match whatever shoes you’re wearing!

Hemming tape can be purchased either thick or thin, so depending on the material that it will be adhered to, make sure to choose accordingly.  You can easily find this “magic stuff” at department stores or craft stores.  All you’ll need is a an iron and a good eye! 😉

Dritz No-Sew Hemming Tape at Jo Ann Fabric & Craft Store

*If you haven’t checked it out yet, Lisa from “I’m An Okie” is hosting an awesome nut butter giveaway!  Check it out!

Have You Heard of This Site??

Oooo boy, I’m runnin’ a little late this morning! :-0

Breakfast had to be something QUICK, so I decided on one of my fave cereal combos: Quaker Oatmeal Squares & Kashi Vive!

Mixed with some almond milk (LOVING this stuff!) and half of a sliced banana (I’ll have the other half for a mid-morning snack I’m sure).  Paired with my mug-o-joe, and I’m ready to go! 🙂

Today’s lunch was made last night while getting things prepped for dinner.  I love being able to take care of two meals at once, don’t you?

Saucy, Cheesy Penne ‘n Veggies! 🙂

I started out with a little leftover pasta that was cooked last night.  Then I topped that with some Newman’s Own Marinara sauce & Italian diced tomatoes.  The next layer is some steamed spinach & zucchini that I cooked in the micro for about 1 minute.

On top of the veggies, I added a little ricotta cheese & a finishing touch of pesto!  Looks kinda like a flower, right? 😀

Mmmm!  I can’t wait to dig into this stuff today! 😛

I also packed some fresh cantaloupe.

So last Friday while out at Girls Night, I started telling the girls about a website that I like to check out every once in a while, which they had no idea about.  As per their request, they said that this was information that I needed to share with the “blow world”, soooo I will do just that!

www.Restaurant.com

Restaurant.com has some AMAZING deals on local restaurants in your area!  You can search by zip code, state, or city, and check out all the participating restaurants.  If you sign up on their e-mail list, they will alert you of when they are having their awesome sales.  And when I saw awesome, I mean AWESOME – they’ve had weeks where gift certificates are up to 80% OFF!

This week, they’re having a 70% Off Sale – that means you can get a $25.00 gift certificate for $3.00!!  Just enter promo code “MOM” at checkout and hit “Apply”.

The one thing that you have to be careful of is to check the stipulations of the various restaurants.  For example, some are not valid on weekends, or require a minimum purchase, etc.  But even still, if you enjoy eating out, trying new places, and getting a BARGAIN, then you should definitely check out this site! 🙂

Stay tuned this afternoon for the next installment of my “Sprucing Up Your Summer Wardrobe”! 😀

Easy Ways to Spruce Up Your Summer Wardrobe, Day 1

So as promised, each day this week I will devote to one tip that you can use to help make the most of your current summer wardrobe.  Some of you may be trying to cut back on extra expenses (hello, just bought a house!), so use whichever tips you like to make yours look “like new”!  ENJOY! 🙂

Day 1 – Play With Accessories

Occasionally, I like to start with a “basic” outfit, such as this.  I love taking a basic white tee and dressing it up with different options!  For work today, I chose this basic white tee and paired it with a skirt I bought last year from NY&Co.  For a casual night out, feel free to go with jeans, capris, or shorts.

Accessory Choice #1: Chunky Belt

A belt can help add sophistication and style to your basic outfit.  You’ll need to decide whether you want thick or thin, depending on how it’s going to be worn.  A thicker belt looks great draped on the outside of a shirt around the hips.  A thinner belt looks great worn in belt loops or around the smaller portion of your waist.  Chunky belts aren’t off limits to this part either – take a look at my outfit here:

This belt is made of elastic on the sides to help give you a better fit.  These are just a couple choices, but you can so totally have FUN with this!

  • Make Your Own! Satin ribbons in a variety of colors can give any outfit “pizazz”.  Head to a craft store, pick up some ribbon, maybe some flowers, and get creative!  Be sure to cut the ends in a V which will help prevent fraying.
  • Check  Your Jewelry! Got a necklace that can do double duty?  If it’s long enough, try it out around your waist!  Sometimes it can add an awesome touch to your outfit.

Accessory Choice #2: Add a Fun Necklace

I ended up buying this necklace off of a clearance rack for $4.00…and it’s so cute!  Again, you’ll need to pay attention to your outfit, specifically the neckline of your top.  Unless you’re wearing a longer necklace like the one shown above, you should be careful to not let it cross the neckline of your shirt.  Shorter necklaces with a fun, chunky charm or other eye-catching piece are best worn around the collarbone.

  • Play with color!  Choosing pieces that highly contrast your outfit will give an awesome, eye-popping effect.  Just make sure it compliments your outfit.
  • Pair a more formal piece with a casual outfit.  I love pairing jeans, a white tee, & some heels with a funky, statement necklace.  It gives style without looking like you’re trying too hard.

So go ahead, give one a try!  We’ve all got some sort of basic outfit to start with.  Choose one that works for you, then pick an accessory and have FUN with it!  That’s what fashion’s supposed to be about! 🙂

Got any other ideas for belts or necklaces?  Do you like to accessorize with these?  Share your thoughts here! 🙂