Fall Fashion Guide

Hey guys!  So I’m back at school which means less exciting adventures, but I’ll still have time to write.  September is probably the biggest month in fashion which means there is plenty to write about and so much to be excited about.  It is also a complicated time since you have to try to seamlessly transition between seasons from loose and light summer clothes to fall layers, but it is always super exciting to put boots back on.  This year, patterns are going to be the “it” trend with plaid and florals taking center stage.  The 90s are also, for better or for worse, making a comeback (hello fanny packs:) which is contributing to the raise of a sort of “ugly fashion” moment.  What ever you might think, these 5 trends are definitely emerging to be big this season, so go out, get in the know and shop (potentially?)!

  1. Western Boots, booties, and cowboy style
    • It’s time to embrace our inner cowboy as the American west is inspiring big trends this season.  Go all out with full-on cowboy boots, or create a more subtle look with popular booties.  I have a pair of white cowboy booties which I try to fearlessly wear with any kind of cute dress to create a bold and confident look.  Western-inspired fringe is a popular look now with jeans, bags and belts.  It might sound tacky, but if worn in contrast to more contemporary clothes, it can look super cool.
  2. Belt Bags (the “classy” fanny pack)
    • Probably the most controversial trend of the moment, but also the most popular (thank you Gucci).  Fanny packs have rebranded themselves to be “belt bags” because people don’t want the shame associated with owning a fanny pack (but they are nearly the same thing).  However, the concept has been upgraded to having nearly every big name designer having one this season.  They have also been made more versatile as you can now wear them cross-shouldered or literally attached to your belt or pants.
  3. Plaid, by itself or with other prints
    • I know I write about plaid and tartan a lot, but that’s because I love it!  As a total plaid guru, it has been super exciting walking into stores to see plaid everywhere.  I can totally embrasse it now with it being so big.  The classic black and grey suiting plaid is having a huge moment, but so is bright colored plaids which evoke 90s vibes and cater to a more avant-garde crowd.

       

  4. Big Knits
    • We’re falling quickly into fall and you know what that means: sweater weather!  This year, large oversized chunky knits are taking center stage with bright colors and patterns designed to make a statement.  Opt to stray away from the traditional cozy fall colors for something a little more happy, yet comfortable in the knit and size.
  5. Fringed and Flared Jeans
    • Skinny jeans aren’t dead, but slowly, other styles are coming onto the scene.  Fall is the perfect time to wear cute statement jeans to complete an outfit since boots don’t need to be in the picture.  Slightly flared jeans look great with booties and mules, while fringed and asymmetrical jeans pair perfectly with a fun pair of sneakers.  The amount of cool jeans style out there right now is enormous making jean shopping fun and different.
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How to Spend 48 Fabulous Hours in Edinburgh Scotland

Hi there!  I just recently returned from a 10 day trip to Scotland where I pretty much road tripped from the Highlands all the way down to Edinburgh.  The whole journey was amazing, and I felt like I was really able to see the whole country.  However, more on that later (look out for a Scottish food post!).  One of my favorite places that I spent time in was the last place, Edinburgh which is a surprisingly bustling metropolitan center full of history and culture.  The last weekend was spent there, and although I definitely could have spent at least another day exploring the city, I was able to pack a lot in those two wonderful days.IMG_7297

Edinburgh isn’t very big in size and population compared to other landmark European cities, but the number of noteworthy sights, neighborhoods, and, quite frankly, tourists make the city feel larger than it is.  It takes on the vibe of a smaller and slightly less stylish London that is easier to walk around and harder to get lost in.  I arrived late in the afternoon on Friday having just played golf nearby.  The immediate cosmopolitan atmosphere of the city center, where my hotel was, made me realize that this place was different from the rest of Scotland.  Our hotel was very modern and stylish, as one would expect from a nice city hotel.

For dinner that first night, I ventured across town to the neighborhood of Stockbridge which is a hip high-end area bustling with coffee shops and gastropubs.  I went to a recommended restaurant called Scran and Scallie.  Nothing in Edinburgh is that far away, so my taxi ride to Stockbridge was an easy ten minutes and it easily paved the way for a light walk back to my hotel.  Scran and Scallie is a very popular gastropub serving traditional Scottish fare in a gourmet manner.  The clientele is young and fun, echoed by the quirky takes on traditional Scottish decor.  The menu appears very traditional with practically any pub fare you can think of available (meat pies, haggis, fish and chips), as well as some more contemporary options.  My Dad and I both opted for classic British entries, while I tried a Scottish specialty and he had an elevated Caesar salad for starters.  My haggis appetizer was a bit risky since I had never tried it before, but it was really good (the texture is oddly comparable to falafel) and I felt as though I was truly embracing the culture.  Our pies (mine was a seafood pie and he had a steak and ale pie) were deliciously comforting and really hit the spot after a day of golf in the rain.  The seafood pie, in particular, eluded flavor with salmon, cod, and shrimp mixed in with mashed potatoes.  Scran and Scallie is really the perfect place to indulge in local cuisine prepared beautifully in a fun atmosphere.

 

The walk back from Stockbridge was surprisingly easy and very pleasant.  The city feels very safe at night, and it is super cool to see all the sights and buildings lit up.  The famous hilltop castle that overlooks the city gleams brightly in a slightly eerie manner to the bopping crowd below.  Back at the hotel, my dad and I went to go check out Bar 1, 1 Square, and although my dad felt a little out-of-place, I found the Bar to be super trendy and cute.  They specialize in fancy schmancy gin and tonics (the hippest drink if there ever was one), as suppose to the traditional scotch collection that is found in most Scottish bars (more my dad’s cup of tea).

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Saturday was an early morning since there is so much to see and explore.  After a breakfast of Scottish smoked salmon (literally the best stuff ever) and black pudding (which is surprisingly delicious), I walked up castle hill which is a super cool walk to use my prepaid online ticket to Edinburgh Castle at 9:30.  On the way, there was a cute little farmer’s market that, if I was a local, I would totally be shopping at.  The castle is admittedly a tad touristy and you have to arrive right when it opens to beat the big buses, but it offers great views of the city and has a very interesting history.  I recommend going straight to the crown jewels exhibit since that line gets long very quickly and it’s probably one of the more impressive parts of the castle.  The castle takes about 2 hours, depending on the crowds, but you can totally condense it and choose to see less or more.

 

Tourist central of Edinburgh is the Royal Mile which you are fed directly into from the exit of the castle.  At first, the crowds are a little overwhelming but they filter out, and if you ignore all the street performers and touristy shops, the wide street is definitely worthwhile to walk down.  St. Giles Cathedral is a highlight and a must-see.  The Cathedral is huge and full of beautiful stain glass windows.  The tall blue ceiling is enough to take your breath away.  Farther down the mile, the crowds disperse and it’s fun to look around the admire the buildings and spirals.  The street finishes at the Holyrood Palace which is an official residence of the Queen.  It is fun to tour the palace and check out the old Holyrood Cathedral ruins since the place is rooted deeply in history.

 

After the mile, I, being a die-hard Harry Potter fan, wanted to check out some notable Harry Potter sites in the city, notably Victoria Street and the cafe where JK Rowling wrote the first couple books.  I grabbed a quick lunch at a little cafe and continued to venture across town back towards the castle, but, this time, instead of walking up the mile, I walked on the edge of old town which is bordered by a valley with the train station underneath.  The views from there are great and there is a park that lines the street.  Victoria Street is the most “aesthetic” street of Edinburgh and claims to be the most photographed.  It is also the street that JK Rowling based “Diagon Alley” after, and really looks like it is out of a movie.  The shops are super fun along the curved street too! I then made the pilgrimage to Elephant House which calls itself the “birthplace of Harry Potter” to take some pictures, and I also photographed “Tom Riddle’s grave” in the nearby Grey Friar’s graveyard (creepy I know).

 

By this time, it was already mid-afternoon, so I ventured over to New Town to walk around and shop.  A highlight of New Town is the Scott Monument and park, a huge gothic steeple that distinguishes itself from the Edinburgh skyline.  Dedicated to the author and thinker Sir Walter Scott, visitors have the ability to climb the monument which I opted not to do since I wanted to get over to the shops.  I enjoyed a couple of hours shopping at British and European shores (including Topshop, Zara, and Harvey Nichols, a fabulous British luxury department store) while also in search of a quilt, being the cliché tourist that I am.  Shopping around Edinburgh is delightful, and there is a surplus of great stores that are harder to find in the US.

 

For my second night in Edinburgh, I went to Wedgwood Restaurant which is a widely considered one of the best in the city complete with a Michelin star and four rosettes.  That being said, the restaurant is nice and simple with a modern atmosphere that isn’t at all stuffy.  The food is centered around local game and seafood with very Scottish ingredients prepared in an elevated manner.  I had a douglas fir smoked salmon dish and an interesting savory bread pudding which was to die for.  My dad had a seaweed vongole pasta starter which was very unique and venison with haggis for his entry.  The highlight of this special meal was the very sticky toffee pudding, a celebrated Scottish dessert and a must try for anyone traveling to Scotland.  Wedgwood is a great restaurant located conveniently on the Royal Mile where you really get to appreciate Scottish produce and fine cuisine.

 

That wrapped up my stay in Edinburgh as I had a 10 am flight the next day.  Overall, I found the city to be delightful and could have definitely spent another day there.  Alas, I was able to squeeze in a lot while I was there.  Highly recommend exploring this city for yourself, even if it is only for 48 hours.

May Picks- Summer Style Must-Haves

Summer has “officially” started (finally), at least for me as I’m back home and enjoying some incredibly warm weather ahead of what’s going to be a steamy Memorial Day Weekend.  Happily, summer means the end of a crazy last month of school, the start of summer jobs, and more time which makes me able to write more!  Leading into June, here are some summer “must-haves” and trends that will be all over the place soon.

Block Heel Sandals

  • Block heels, along with tiny kitten heels, have been seen all over the streets with good reason since they are super stylish and can work perfectly for a variety of occasions (casual to formal).  What’s also fun is that the trend is super broad, meaning that many different styles can have and are having a fun and bold block heel.  For summer, opt for a bright colorful pair to make any outfit stand out.

 

Cage Bags

Wide Leg Pants

Matching Sets

Slide Sandals

February Picks (Fashion Week Roundup)

It’s that time of year when fashion capitals around the world come alive in what would otherwise be dreary February.  Haute Couture might seem like a distant fairytale-like dream, but, in reality, following the avant-guard trends of supermodels can be super helpful in figuring out the ins and outs of upcoming seasons, and keeping up with the world of fashion.  I love looking at the design that goes into the shows and reading about what everyone is wearing, so I came up with a list of the most common and most crazy trends that have been appearing on runways for my February article.

  1. Mini bags

High fashion tends to draw in the extremes with mostly everything over the top and big, but, in this case, the extreme is tiny with the idea that something subtle can easily catch attention.  The trend of mini bags comes at a time when people don’t need a huge purse to carry their lives with them since all that is really needed nowadays is a smartphone and credit card.  It’s a crazy concept, but it’s also super convenient and easy.  Who really wants to tote around a large bag all day anyway?

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Gigi Hadid spotted walking in Milan with a mini purse.  Vogue.com

2.  Suit wear and blazers

A bit of a surprising revitalization, but professional wear has been getting a fashionable makeover with elaborate blazers and classy suiting skirts.  I personally love this trend since it is very sophisticated and shows that dressing up never goes out of style.  Oversized blazers and embroidery are really spearheading it and allowing suiting to be an edgier concept.

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A model in Gucci’s Milan Fashion Week show sporting a New York inspired suit that had a very classic retro feel.

3.   Fringe

This fun trend is perfect for spring and summer, and can really add a lot of character to an outfit.  Practically every kind of clothing can be found this season with fringe from skirts and formal dresses to sweaters, shirts, and purses with tassels.

 

 

4.   Athleisure

Athletic clothing is starting to move more into high-end fashion with the growing trend of athleisure style.  It is pretty much a cross between athletic clothing and fashion that can be sported both inside and outside the gym.  This growing trend is perfect for busy days and really helps to keep you motivated and fit.

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Leggings as apart of a gym ready groutfit were found at the Alexander Wang New York show.

5.   Bold Prints and Stripes

Floral print, animal print, stripes (you name it) are super popular with brands showcasing a ton of color and bright bold patterns on their clothing.  Shake off the winter blues with fuchsia stripes (yes, fuchsia is trending), or floral everything to start off summer on the right foot.

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A look from the Michael Kors NYFW show that shows all sorts of prints at once.

 

6.   Plaid

Plaid is all over the place right now, literally everywhere!  Many designers are carrying out collections of vintage plaid suiting, tartan, and even rainbow plaid.  Burberry turned to color during London Fashion Week, and Versace had what is being deemed a Cher Horowitz Clueless moment with 90s style colored plaid everything outfits.  Plaid is a great timeless style that can be worn anywhere.

 

 

7.  Big Sleaves and big shirts

Make a statement with big sleeves and wrap shirts this summer.  Last year, off the shoulder and cold shoulder dresses were all the rage (and expect that to continue this spring/summer), but this year, the shirts are going to get even bigger.  Abstract wrap shirts are the perfect way to look put-together and fashionable, as they stand out and look chic.

 

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12 Tips for Smarter Online Shopping

In this cyber-obsessed world that we live in, shopping has become completely associated with the internet.  Commercial malls are dying a painful death, department stores are suffering, and small businesses are loosing more and more customers as people become reliant on their screens.  What has flourished as a result, however, is online shopping.  With everyone connected to their phones and computers, buying clothing online is becoming easier and easier.  It’s easy to see why with the convenience and accessibility; every possible thing is available online right at your figure tips.

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It is truly amazing being able to shop all day long on your computer, but the kicker is how fast the prices of everything add up.  I live in a rural town which means I am constantly relying on online shopping for every need, and being a college student who enjoys splurging on clothes, it’s vital that I try to save every penny I possibly can.  Here are 12 ways to help save money while shopping online:

  1. Promo Codes are your best friend
    • One of the biggest benefits of shopping online is the existence of promo codes which are essentially online sales that don’t usually happen instore.  Brands will have them all the time, and they range from “free shipping” to “25% off entire store”.  Using them is definitely the greatest weapon when it comes to saving money online.
  2. Stay clear of buying things at full price (unless you absolutely love or need that item)
    • As a general rule, don’t buy anything at full price (including the price for shipping).  It does not take long for items to go on sale, and, unlike stores, it is much easier to find great “full price-like” clothing online.  I usually spot something that I like and then wait for it to either have a promo code discount or for it to go on sale.  For me, there is literally never a need to pay full price.
  3. Discover online retailers
    • With a changing fashion industry and the growth of online shopping, the “online retailer” has emerged as a new and very popular concept for shoppers.    Many sites focus on curating a great selection of well-known (as well as new) brands with an emphasis on style and quality.  Shopbop is a fabulous online retailer that specializes in both boutique designers and haute couture to create a trendy mid to high range priced vibe.  Net-a-Porter and Moda Operandi are both well known high-end retailers that, unlike physical stores, make buying designer couture more reasonable with generous sales.  Asos is a British brand that focuses on more fast fashion with great prices.  It is super convenient and has a wide variety of clothing.
  4. But also check out department stores online
    • Department stores have been steadily declining for years (tear), but some stores are adapting to the internet by offering an easy way to shop their stores online.  Stores like Nordstrom and Saks Fifth Ave are practically just other online retailers with great selections of trendy and classic clothing.  They too have great promotions and offer ways to save money online rather than going to the actual stores.  Both Nordstrom and Saks often offer quick free shipping and have super easy free return policies.  It’s practically like you’re trying on their clothes instore in the comfort of your own home!
  5. If you are a student, always try to see if there is a student discount
    • Some stores have great instore student discounts which serve as an incentive to travel to the closest mall, but recently companies are starting to allow student discounts online, too.  Both Topshop and Asos use an online British platform that you sign up for once and are automatically eligible for a discount.  This is perfect for us Americans who don’t have much access to these stores.  As online shopping becomes even more widespread, I imagine that more companies will start offering discounts.
  6. Sign up for Honey (literally the best thing ever)
    • Honey is a program that notifies you of any promo codes while you check out of a store.  It’s super easy and does it all for you.  What is even more amazing is that Honey will also practically pay you to shop online.  You can get 1-10% or 1-5% back on purchases with sites that Honey is connected to and then redeem that cash for various online gift cards.
    • Click here to join: joinhoney.com/ref/adofmeScreen Shot 2018-02-12 at 7.47.46 PM
  7. Become loyalty members at your favorite online stores
    • First of all, signing up to be on the email lists of stores is super helpful because you can get special deals and such, but some stores offer loyalty memberships that will offer you even more.  Sephora, for example, gives you points, free samples for every online purchase, and special free gift promotions for their members.  It’s perfect for any college student who cannot just get themselves to the nearest beauty supplier to restock on makeup, lotion, products, etc.
  8. Sign up for Shop It To Me (An AMAZING email service)
    • Shop It To Me is an email service that sends you daily emails of any items from your favorite brands that are on sale anywhere on the internet.  What is even better is that everything they show you on sale is guaranteed to be in your size since you give them all of your sizes when you sign up.  It makes bargain shopping extremely easy and accessible.  Screen Shot 2018-02-12 at 9.10.01 PM
  9. Download the app Keep
    • Keep is another great program that takes trending items from all over the internet and shows them to you in a feed.  You can then like or buy those items at the best price around.  If you like an item, Keep emails you whenever that item has gone on sale somewhere.  The app is essentially a social media platform for shopping and is literally addicting.  Screen Shot 2018-02-12 at 9.27.29 PM.png
  10. Subscribe to Cools (email publication)
    • Cools is another great fashion based email subscription that notifies you of big sales happening online, in addition to them constantly updating you on note-worthy trends.  They release emails every week or so, keeping you in the loop of everything fashion related going on online.
  11. Use Polyvore
    • Yet another great resource that can save you a lot of money online; Polyvore is a site that drawls in clothing vendors from all over the internet to show clothes categorized by the trend.  You can like a trend, and then get notified when items under that trend go on sale.  The site has a ton of other services that are amazing and very useful for online shopping, in addition to an email service that also showcases current trends from the internet every week.  Screen Shot 2018-02-12 at 7.50.12 PM
  12. “Like” items that you would buy at a lower price
    • Finally, a small but helpful trick to finding clothes at the lowest price is to simply “like” or “add to wishlist” an item that you would potentially buy if the price were to drop.  By doing this, many stores will then email you when that item is added to sale or its price is lowered.  They also notify you when that item is low in stock or when your size that they might have been out of comes back into stock.  Easy, but extremely useful!

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January Picks

January can be one of the most un-motivating and dreary times of the year.  After the high of the holiday season, it can be difficult to decompress, detox, and move-on.  Here are 8 items, ideas, and inspiration to help with the mid-winter slump.  Disclaimer, affiliate links included.

  1. Hand Lotion- AHAVA Mineral Cream
  • The current cold weather is the WORST for skin, especially hands, resulting in me desperately putting on a thick hand cream every couple of hours to prevent the dreaded cracked and burning skin.  This Dead Sea sourced AHAVA cream is a great water-based formula that moisturizes well and smells great.
  • Find it on Amazon by clicking on the image.   

2.  Body Lotion- Brazilian Bum Bum Cream

  • Again, the dry and cold weather is dreadful for skin, meaning that a good body cream is a must.  This Bum Bum cream is amazing.  It’s nourishing, makes your skin shine, and smells like a legit beach.
  • Find it on Amazon by clicking the image, or at sephora.
     3.  Resurrect your hair with a nourishing hair mask- Nelson Argan Oil Mask
  • I find that during these crazy weather months, my hair suffers.  It becomes super staticy and I tend to develop more split ends that usual.  I recently found this product that infuses moisture into hair while helping to repair damage.  It is super easy to apply and does not take up much time.  My hair has been so much better since getting this!
  • Find the hair mask on Amazon by clicking the image.

4.  See an Oscar season movie in theaters

  • So many great movies come out in December, and while many plan on seeing movies around the holidays, they are still around after New Years.  This year was espically good with movies such as “The Darkest Hour” and “I, Tonya” which are both historical biopics complete with great acting.

5.  Get intrigued and spooked by the latest season of Black Mirror

  • Black Mirror has to be one of the most intriguing shows out there right now with its complicating plotwists, unique story lines, and disturbing themes.  Each episode of the show is entirly different, meaning that each episode has completely different characters, settings and even time periods.  They explore different distrubing realities and mostly focus on the dark side of technology.  While sometimes freaky, Black Mirror is so fascinating, and the new season on Netflix does not disappoint.

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6.  Shop for early Spring Break clothing on sale online

  • Ok, so you might think that it is too early for spring shopping, but Spring Break is coming up fast, and why not treat yourself to clothing you can look forward to wearing in a couple of months.  Many online retailers are having massive sales on Resort collections right now.  Find great deals at Shopbop, MyTeresa and Net-A-Porter.

7.  Invest in some stylish and durable winter boots to get you through the rest of the winter

  • I confess to really not liking typical winter boots.  I don’t mind the look; it is just that I feel bulky wearing them.  However, I finally realized my need for them, and found a great pair of Sorrel’s from Nordstrom that are cute and not too blocky.  I love them because they are unconventional and stylish.  There are so many unique options out there that help keep winter chic!

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8.  Discover winter’s newest late coming color trends

  • Black and White:  Fresh out of Paris Haute Couture Week, the classic combo is suddenly being revitalized and it’s bolder than ever.  The look is a great way to brighten up winter while still staying with darker tones.
  • Pink:  Millenial Pink is hotter than even with the subtle shade being wore all year round.  The sweet color looks bright and refined while still making a statement.

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    Skirt: See by Cholé.  Skirt: Milly.  Shoes: Schutz.  Sweater: 3.1 Phillip Lim

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November Picks

I realize that this is a little late in the month, but I have been busy with the holidays and school lately.  Anyways, with Christmas just around the corner, it is hands down the best time of year.  The hustle and bustle, the joy, and the overall craziness is something to be thankful for as we get closer to Christmas.  I have compiled a list of my usual monthly picks, along with tips for holiday shopping and deals.

What to listen to (affiliate links included):

Blake Shelton-Texoma Shore

  • The newly crowed sexiest man of the year (thank you People) has recently released an album called Texoma Shore.  With great countries songs, Blake Shelton’s keeps the album down to earth and real, something that pop/country artists seem to sometimes lack nowadays.  The hit single “I’ll Name the Dogs” is my personal favorite since it is such a great feel good love song.


Niall Horan- Flicker

  • One Direction member turned avid golf enthusiast turned solo pop artist and country collaborator, Niall Horan has done a lot recently to make a name for himself.  Back in my middle school days, I was head over heels for Niall (being a huge directioner), so I love to see how well he is doing.  It also does not surprise me how much I love her new and first solo album, Flicker.  Slow Hands is a great catchy fun tune, This Town is nice and reminiscent of a past time, and Seeing Blind is a great collaboration with Maren Morris, one of my favorite up and coming country stars.

What to watch (affiliate links included):

Made of Honor (2008)

  • This is a little known American rom com that I stumbled across on Netflix.  It is clever, very predictable (of course), hilarious, and happens to star Patrick Dempsey (Mr. McDreamy).  While the movie isn’t award worthy, it’s a great distraction to rest your mind for awhile.   Click on the photo to rent on Amazon.

A Royal Night Out (2015)

  • Another random Netflix find that happened to be fabulous.  A Royal Night Out tells the story of a young Queen Elizabeth on VE day at the end of WW2.  For anyone eagerly anticipating the return next month of The Crown (me!) and with talks of an upcoming royal wedding, this is sure to satisfy your need of British culture.  Again, a bunch of fluff, but fun!  Click on the photo to rent on Amazon.

Fashion- How to get good deals this Christmas shopping season

Alas, Black Friday has come and gone, for better or for worse.  If you are feeling like you missed out on savings for presents and a seasonal wardrobe makeover, do not fret and be glad that you avoided the unnecessary stress associated with overhyped “bargains”.  It is probably not a secret, but I rely on online shopping to find deals with an abundance of promo codes and online services that alert me on where to find something for the cheapest price. Throughout all of December, it is pretty much guaranteed that your favorite retailers will one, restock everything, and two, offer up similar (if not better) deals to those offered on Black Friday and Cyber Monday.  Here are some tips on navigating this crazy shopping time.

  1.  Avoid all malls
  • Only go to an actually store if it is a must.  Malls and shopping areas are mobbed this time of year, causing extra stress and wasting time.  Online, you will find no actual people and much better discounts.

2.   Look into getting clothes and accessories through online department stores

  • Stores such as Nordstrom and Saks are super easy to navigate online and offer great return and shipping policies, especially this time of year.  Browse the gift guides and trend alerts for easy shopping, in addition to talking advantage of their fleeting and immense sales.

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3.    Download and use Honey

  • Honey.com is this amazing program that notifies you of promo codes and discounts while shopping at stores online.  The little widget will get downloaded on to your search bar and you can use it at pretty much any store.  What is even more amazing is that by using Honey, you get reward points that you can redeem for virtual gift cards.  It rewards you for saving!

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4.     Do not delete all of those sale notification emails

  • While they are super annoying and might seem meaningless, you never know when you might need to buy something from some random site.  When you do, it is nice to be able to go back and search for the store to see if any deals are currently going on.

5.   Sign up for ShopItToMe

  • This is another great resource that can save you a ton of money online.  Shop it to Me is an online program that sends you daily alerts of sales going on for any item of  your so-called “favorite brands”.  The best part of it is that you tell them all your sizes, so the clothes that are shown on sale are going to be in your size.  You like brands, put down your sizes, and voilà, you get notified when ever something that you might like is on sale anywhere online.  Screen Shot 2017-11-28 at 9.39.58 PM.png
  • I hope to have provided some good tips on shopping this month.  Stay tuned for a more comprehensive guide to saving money while shopping online in the future.

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Exploring London- Part 2, When/Where to Shop

Hello again!  Yes, I love shopping, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that I spent a lot of time while in London exploring the famous department stores and street side boutiques.  I happened to be in London during their bi-annual sales week which occurs towards the end of June.  That being said, pretty much every store had a large selection of clothes 50% off and more.  Department stores, such as Harrods, went all out.  The annual Harrods sale is the only one they have a year, meaning that yes, the place is mobbed, but they dedicate a whole floor to sale items, along with sales up and down the rows of designer collections making it well worth the visit.

This might just sound like heaven in a shopper’s paradise, and it pretty much is.  However, I knew that the sales would draw crowds to prime shopping areas near my hotel in Knightsbridge.  It was true, and I definitely noticed more people on Saturday than Friday, but I took advantage of the limited shoppers on Friday and shopped all over the city.  Below, I have compiled a list of my favorite, along with the best shopping that I experience while I spent time in London this summer in celebration of London Fall Fashion Week starting this weekend.

  • Liberty’s and Regent Street
    • Liberty’s was my personal favorite.  The building itself is charming and perfectly reflects British culture.  Although known for its famous prints,   Liberty has a great collection of mid to high range British designers out of London.  The sale there was particularly good with an entire floor half off.  They also have an array of home goods and decor.
    • Regent Street is very popular for mid to high price range chain stores.  It can get very crowded, however.
  • Bond Street and Burlington Arcade
    • A little window shopping never killed anybody, and this rings true to this glitzy area.  Bond Street is home to flagship stores of both British and international Haute Couture houses.  The well-heeled crowd is fun to watch, and who says you cannot have a look around.  I personally love doing that, in order to find inspirational from my dreams.
    • The Arcade is famous for its jewelry and watch displays, and it is worth a visit to experience the quaint yet grande architecture that fills the narrow strip.  There is also a Ladurée shop at the end which sells divine macaroons that do actually live up to their hype.
  • Fortum and Mason IMG_7704
    • Very close to the high streets of Mayfair, Fortum and Mason is a food haven.  The department store specializes in delicacies, and has an immense display of speciality tea.  I’ll admit it, I’m a tea snob, so their food hall was paradise for me.  I had stopped here to grab lunch at their great café, and ended up spending over an hour such gazing at all the delicious preserves, candies, and groceries that they had.  In addition, I smelled and tested every kind of tea until I had them package a special one for me.  An amazing experience if you are into food shopping.
  • Harrods and Brompton Road
    • Probably the most famous department store in the world, Harrods doesn’t disappoint.  The massive over the top fashion mecca is stocked full with any high end designer and fashion house possible, along with middle market British brands, cosmetics, jewelry, and accessories.  The food halls are a whole other story with each room filled to the brim with different gourmet produces. They actually have a lot of decent take out options that can be eaten on the go (my hotel was right near by, so it was super convenient to grab food here), in addition to sit down places.  On this particular trip, I visited Harrods twice for multiple hours at a time, and I still didn’t feel like I saw close to the whole thing, but the size is amazing to gawk at!  Tip: go early in the morning and not on the weekend, when the tourist haven’t arrived yet.  It might still be crowded,  but the crowd will be either locals or actual interested shoppers, making the experience more authentic.
    • Brompton Road surrounds Harrods, and hosts large flagship stores and British chains.  There’s a huge Zara and Topshop for fast fashion fans, in addition to a flagship Burberry, Ted Baker London, and All Saints.
  • Sloane Street and BelgraviaIMG_7961
    • Another area that is optimal for window shopping; Sloane street is adjacent to Brompton Road and is lined with designer labels.  Harvey Nichols is another department store that calls Sloane Street home, and while I heard it is worth while, I didn’t get the opportunity to explore it on my trip.  Alas, something to look forward to for my next visit.
    • Right near that, there are a handful of side streets in Belgravia that have a lot of local ateliers and boutiques that are super fascinating to go into.  I was amazed by the fact that these tiny unassuming store fronts could produce masterpieces with fabric.

It seems like I cannot get enough of British fashion, and I couldn’t help to love everywhere I shopped in London.  I hope this guide’s helpful for fellow fashionistas!