A Summer Style Story: Flirty + Flowy Dresses

Summertime is always the best of what might be. - Charles Bowden

Words really can’t describe how I excited I am for summer. It may not be a big deal for all, but when you live in a state where the forecast is literally gray nine months out of the year, the breaking temperature is a welcome reprieve.

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My favorite part about summer? That I can release myself from lumpy sweaters and constricting layers! I know some of us live for fall and winter fashion but summer style is really where I live. My favorite summer style staples are sundresses, fun and bold accessories, and of course, gigantic sunnies. Bright patterned dresses are great for a casual day around town AND they can be dressed up for a night out. I like to keep my accessories simple and complimentary: a pair of earrings with a sweet ruffle detail or two necklaces, layered with each other are awesome ways to give a simple look some dimension.

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Ruffle Sleeve Wrap Midi Dress | Straw Round Bag | Necklace (similar) | Necklace (vintage)

Tell me, what are your favorite things to wear in the summer?

Memorial Day Slay Part One

Who's cooking out this weekend and can a girl get an invite?

A fun mix of colors and prints to kick off the unofficial beginning of summer.

A fun mix of colors and prints to kick off the unofficial beginning of summer.

Being an Upstate New Yorker I wait for a glimpse of warmth from about October to May (and by warmth, I mean 60 degrees, the bar is set pretty low around here). The weather this year was particularly odd since we didn't get a real Spring and went straight from sweater weather to almost 90 degrees. 

Memorial Day being the unofficial beginning of summer I figured it would be fun to go with s super short short and long jacket to balance out all the skin. And of course, since it's summer time, I figured it was appropriate to mix different colors and prints.

Outfit Details

(everything is old so no links)

Jacket and Shorts | Marshall's Crop Top | Misguided Shoes | Asos Hair | B&HF Extensions

What are you all doing for Memorial Day weekend?

Joelle

Black and White and Spring All Over

Oh, I heard about you. I was waiting on you at the door. - Foxy

Please excuse all of the snit (snow + shit = snit) that is all around me in these pictures. I can't tell you how much I am ready for spring. My body is just waiting for the warmth to surround me. Until then I suppose I will enjoy these mid 30s and 40s temperatures that I like to call "pre spring". These days feel damn near toasty compared to the sub zero temps Upstate NY was experiencing throughout February.

Despite the warmer climate, I'm still into this darker and more simplistic color palette. I used to be the color and pattern queen but I guess I've toned it down since my college days. I love wearing and buying g black and white pieces because you can create so many looks with them!

Top | Skirt | Jacket | Shoes

As always, thank you so mo much for stopping by and reading!

Until Next Time...

Kisses,

Joelle

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Never Pay Retail Again

Natural Hair for the Holidays

One of the biggest problems with being a fashion enthusiast is the cost. When you have very specific taste, finding the things you want can be expensive and it's not easy on the wallet. At the same time, one of the greatest advantages of being a fashion student is knowing cost of production, markup percentages, and the power of a brand name.

On average, everything you buy at the mall is marked up 40% from wholesale prices. This is done so that the retailer selling the product makes a profit after buying it from the wholesaler. Knowing this, paying full price at an average retail store makes me cringe but I always know that I don't have to spend that kind of money. 

Winter Fashion Inspiration

I have been known to stalk items until they're at a price I like: returning to stores periodically to check on a particular pair of shoes may look strange to others but I think it's smart.

If you love fashion but hate paying an arm and a leg for it, read my tips for shopping on a budget.

1. Know your stores and their markdown schedule. For example, Target marks down women's apparel every Tuesday so if you have something that you've been looking at, check on a Tuesday.

2. Know your numbers. As someone who has worked retail I always know that an initial markdown is NOT the final markdown. Generally speaking, if a price ends in a 9 or an 8 it will be marked down again but a price ending in 5 or 4 is probably the final clearance price.

3. Ask yourself, "Is this a good deal?". If you're looking at a shirt and it's two dollars off a thirty dollar price tag, it's probably not a great deal.

4. Sign up for store loyalty programs. If you shop at a store religiously and you continue to turn down their requests to join their loyalty programs you are losing money! I know the emails can be annoying but the store also sends you coupons and you can receive points for every dollar spent which will eventually lead to money off future purchases.

5. Shop off price stores. I'm not a huge fan of thrifting as I can never find what I like but I love shopping off price stores like T.J. Maxx and Marshall's. The fur jacket featured in this post is a Michael Kors piece from T.J. Maxx. The original price was over three hundred dollars but I was able to purchase it for only ninety nine dollars.

jeweled top and faux leather pants

Hopefully these tips will help you guys with some bargain shopping this season. What are your favorite places to look for a deal.

Until Next Time...

Kisses,


Joelle


Chic Holiday Cocktails + Altuzarra for Target

A true lover always feels in debt to the one he loves. - Robert W. Sockman

I'm back with another holiday inspired look and today we're going a little more formal. While the last look was a little casual and more suited for a night with your girls, this look is better suited for a date night with a loved one or a party at a cozy cocktail lounge.

I bought this dress as part of the Altuzarra for Target collaboration (you can watch my review here) and while I know so many bloggers have already posted their looks featuring this line but I needed to get my whole look together.

This beautiful draped dress reminds me of Old Hollywood Glamour; the color is so rich and it plays a sort of peekaboo game showing skin in certain places and covering up with the long sleeves. When I tried the dress on I was a bit overwhelmed by the sexiness of it all. To down play the sultry I wore the dress with a pair of black leather front pants and I added another touch of glamour with a vintage fur coat.

I really love this look because it is modern yet it evokes an older feel. I will definitely be pairing more dresses with pants for a sophisticated and pulled together look.

Until Next Time...


Kisses,

Joelle

Mini Twists | The Ultimate Protective Style

Causal Look with Mini Twists

Winter is upon us and I think I'm in love... with my hair! I went natural in November 2011 so in a sense it's our anniversary. Despite living in my natural beauty for three years, I think I'm just now getting the importance of winter hair care. I love to wear my hair out so protective styling is difficult for me but I think I may have found the perfect solution: Mini Twists!

Mini Twists are definitely not new in the natural hair community- many naturals attribute their journey to waist length hair to the style- but sometimes it's nice to revisit the simplicity of the tried and true. I plan on leaving my hair in this twists for about three weeks and I'm really excited to see some healthy hair growth and length retention.

Tips for a Successful Mini Twist Installation

1. Section Your Hair. This will keep you from going insane! I started my hair in about 8 to 10 sections that I put in large twists. I then broke each twist down in sections. I continued this method until I was ready to break each twist into it's own section of mini twists.

2. Style on dry hair. I can only imagine that installing mini twists on wet/ damp hair would be a nightmare complete with the dreaded "product hand" and long hours spent with heavy arms. I styled my mini twists on dry hair and then washed my hair with the twists in. Because of this my hair was pre- stretched making twisting easier.

3. Don't be afraid to style. Just because your hair is up doesn't mean you can't have fun! I set my twists in a gorgeous rod set and I plan to explore more styling options. Your hair should never be boring and times when you are protective styling are no exception.

Want to see how I'm keeping my twists fresh and stylish while I sleep? check out my video on youtube!

So tell me, what's your favorite protective style?

Thanks for reading! Until Next Time...

Kisses,

Joelle

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