Spring Wardrobe

Recently I cleaned out my closet. Like, really cleaned out my closet. I did this in hopes of fine tuning my wardrobe to pieces that I really love and that flow together. (More about that in a later post) Now that I’ve got room in my closet, it’s time to refresh my spring wardrobe. I decided to focus on relaxed pieces for work, since I plan on living in jeans and a tee for my weekends. I’ve picked out pieces that can easily be switched around to create numerous different outfits. I’ve also picked pieces that can be worn with jeans, other pieces in my closet and places other than work. Some of these items I have already purchased and others are budgeted for next month. Also, most are J. Crew because J. Crew is my favorite!

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(Left to Right) White Ruffle Front Shirt- J.Crew Factory, Who What Wear Black Gingham Blouse- Target, Black Rooster Eyelet Top- J.Crew, Central Stripe Ruffle Sleeve Shirt- Madewell, French Rose Tippi Merino Sweater- J.Crew, Striped Twist Back Tee- J.Crew
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Universal Thread White Denim Shirt- Target, Drapey Pull On Pant- J.Crew Factory, Mid-Rise White Skinny Jean- GAP, Wide Leg Crop Chambray Pants- J. Crew
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Roman Chandelier Earrings and Kalani Statement Necklace-My Stella & Dot, Me Too Bettina Espadrille Wedge- Nordstrom, Top Shop Bali Pom Straw Bag- Nordstrom

Product Pusher: Confessions of a Stella & Dot Stylist

Get on social media and it seems everyone is selling something these days. Everyone. Go on your Facebook account right now and I bet at least ten of your “friends” are trying to convince you that you need something they have to sell you; jewelry, skin care products, lipstick, bags for everything with your monogram, makeup, essential oils, a healthy lifestyle along with a $100 per month powder, etc., etc. I have a love/hate relationship with all of this because, A- I, admittedly, have fallen for many of these things and, B- I AM one of these people. It can be so annoying and I annoy myself with it. Trust me. But I keep going and I would like to tell you why.

It was 2008 when I went to my first Stella & Dot party. I had never heard of it before but a girl from my office was having a party and I was a new mom who needed a night out. Decision made. What I wasn’t prepared for was how much I loved it! Like, seriously wanted it all!! However, I couldn’t afford it all, so I purchased a pair of amazing earrings and gave some serious thought to hosting my own party to score all the other goodies I wanted.

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My first Stella & Dot purchase was these Goa Earrings.

Before I could plan my own trunk show we made a decision to move back to my hometown . After we were settled, I still really wanted to have a party. I went to the Stella & Dot website and clicked to find a stylist. It didn’t take long to receive an email from a stylist in Columbia (closest one at the time). Together we locked in a date and time. I was so excited and then terrified. Who was I going to invite? Granted, I was living in the town I grew up in, but I had not lived there in a really long time. My social circle wasn’t very big. Thankfully the hosting packet had a “who do you know?” page in it. I started making a list and once I started thinking of friends, family, co-workers, and church friends, my list was bigger than I thought it would be. Also, to my surprise, people actually showed up!

After that, I was hooked. I wanted to wear and share this jewelry with others. I signed up to be a stylist and have loved it ever since. I did bow out completely for a short time but had to come back. I missed it! I have gone full force and taken time off. One of the things I like is there is no amount you have to sell each month. You can work as little or as much as you want to, whatever fits your life. There is a small (quarterly, I think) fee to keep your website up, but that’s all. I’ve also met some really awesome people through this experience. Every Stella & Dot stylist I’ve met is amazing. I’ve even walked up to strangers in public places and asked “Are you a S&D stylist?” because you just learn to spot “your people” in a crowd (it helps when you see them wearing the goods). I really love these accessories and this company. The company started in 2003 by Jessica Herrin. She wanted a way to stay home with her newborn and have a career so she started making jewelry in her living room. Fast forward to 2007 and she is joined by Blythe Harris, who becomes the creative director. They rename the company after their grandmothers and Stella & Dot was officially born. It has grown so much since then, adding in scarves, bags, high end diamond necklaces and most recently tops, dresses and hats. All the jewelry is hand crafted and lead and nickel free. It’s made from semi-precious stones, crystal, glass, sterling silver, brass, bronze, gold vermeil and hand painted enamel. It’s more beautiful in person than on the website or in the look book.

I’ve never really asked anyone to join me on this journey but if you are interested in a no pressure, fun “job” that you can work as a full time gig or just as a part time hobby, I would love to talk to you. Along with helping style other gorgeous ladies, you also get the following perks.

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This little card recently helped pay for our kitchen remodel. I love having trunk shows and the money is an extra perk!
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This month is such an AMAZING deal!!

So, if you’re still with me, I apologize for being one of those annoying people on social media. I try to not go overboard but sometimes it’s difficult. Please know that I am not a sales person. I’m just a chick that truly does love this company and I want others to feel confident and amazing in what they wear every day!

XO-

Lindsay,

Stylist, Stella & Dot

Easter Dress Shopping

As a little girl, the worst part of any weekend was getting ready for church. And no Sunday was as excruciating as Easter Sunday! I was not a fan of dresses when I was little, but Easter dresses were always extra itchy and uncomfortable. (Must have been all the lace in the 80’s) Even the little socks I had to wear had lace on them. Fast forward a few years and now I love buying an Easter dress. I feel like it’s the one Sunday where our family needs to (at least try) look like we have it together. You know, every boy is wearing pretty plaid and actually has matching socks!

I have not purchased a dress yet and have been hunting online this weekend. I’ve come up with a few options.

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I love this one from Love…Ady on Nordstrom Rack. It just screams Easter dress. Less than $50.
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Loving the stripes on this one by Lush and it looks so comfy. It’s at Nordstrom for $55.
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Love the light grey color and the cut out detail of the Doe & Rae at Nordstrom Rack. $36
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I feel like I need this Max Studio dot dress in my closet, even if it’s not my Easter dress. Nordstrom Rack, $46
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And then there is this! I am in LOVE with this J. Crew jumpsuit and since we are spending Easter on the coast, it would be perfection!! Only drawback is that it’s outside my budget….$148

I want to hear from ya’ll! Which one is your favorite and do you still buy an Easter dress?

XO-

Lindsay

 

 

The Scarf Trend

I have always had a thing for scarves. I think back to the mid 90’s and I can remember exactly what I wore to the Master’s golf tournament the first year that Tiger won. Not because I’m a Tiger fan, but because it was a memorable moment in golf history and I really loved the outfit I was wearing that day. It was the perfect GAP outfit made up of a pair of khaki cigarette pants, a sleeveless white button down and a dusty rose colored scarf with little flowers. I kept that scarf for a long time after they went out of fashion and now they seem to be making a comeback. Bloggers are rocking scarves all over Instagram. Something about a scarf makes life a little more glamorous to me, like back in the 50’s and 60’s when woman wore them often around their heads or necks. Anything that makes me feel a little like Jackie O or Grace Kelly is perfection in my book. They both had such impeccable style and while we’re talking about it, I would be tickled pink if pill box hats and women’s driving gloves came back in fashion. Seriously!! What a classy time in fashion. But back to scarves….

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I’m a little upset that at some point I decided to get rid of my small scarf collection and I have recently decided to start a new one. I purchased a pretty little red one from Madewell for $12 last week and I seriously want to wear it all the time. Scarves are easy to wear and can make a simple outfit look more polished. You can wear them around your neck, around your wrist in a bracelet style or several different ways in your hair. Check out the ways I styled my new scarf and go pick up one of your own.

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My oldest monkey was playing photographer while this one was just playing.

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A Neutral Wardrobe

Do you all ever wake up in the middle of the night, start thinking about random things and then come to some sort of realization? Well, it happened to me last night. One of the kids woke me up around 2AM and I couldn’t get back to sleep, so naturally I do one of three things at this time. I watch Law and Order: SVU, design rooms in my head, or design outfits in my head. (What can I say? I’m a creative Pisces with a love for Benson and Stabler.)  Last night I started thinking about clothes, while watching SVU (multitasking) and randomly decided to grab my phone and start a new Pinterest board with neutral outfits. I found a few new things to pin and then decided to go through my regular fashion board to move some neutral outfits over to the new board. That’s when it hit me, I really love neutral clothes. Now, this is something I already knew about myself but looking at just how many neutral outfits I had already pinned, it just hit me that I REALLY love neutral clothes.

What Makes a Neutral Wardrobe?

1. Obviously, neutral colored clothes. A neutral wardrobe is made up of clothes that are white, black, camel, grey, navy, chambray, and any stripe pattern made of those colors. Ok, I may have made the stripe thing up just now, but I think stripes are always a good idea.

2. Denim, Denim, and more Denim! Give me all the denim: light wash, medium wash, dark wash, destroyed, flared, straight, skinny, and boyfriend. Denim can be worn with anything and take you from weekend wear to work wear (think dark trouser jeans).

3. Another key thing to having a great neutral wardrobe is finding flattering pieces that work for you. A neutral wardrobe is made up of timeless pieces that fit well. It really is better to pay more money for a great pair of jeans that fit you well, even if you have to have them professionally hemmed, than to keep wasting money on jeans you either end up hating or only wearing for a season.

4. Accessories are where you switch it up! I love accessories!!! (Hello, Stella & Dot stylist) You can own the same pair of jeans and white button down for years but constantly make it different with jewelry, scarves, shoes and bags. It’s like a blank canvas for your accessories. It’s better it invest money in the core pieces and then buy new accessories that change with the seasons.

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Why a Neutral Wardrobe?

  1.  Duh?? Everything goes with everything!! I don’t know about ya’ll, but I don’t have time in the morning to try and put together some amazing outfit before I go to work. I have to get myself and three kids out the door before the sun is up. Having a neutral wardrobe means that it all goes together. Black pants, khaki pants, and olive green pants go well with shirts that are white, black, grey and navy. Plus, I have always hated having an outfit in my closet that only goes with itself. I can only wear it every few weeks or so, because (gasp) people might notice that I’m wearing the same thing over and over. A woman’s worst nightmare- right?

2.  Which leads me to my second point, you can switch things up constantly.  Since it all goes together, you can stretch your wardrobe further. You can be creative and give the illusion that you have a lot more clothes than what you actually have. I’ll demonstrate this shortly. (Keep reading and scrolling)

3. A neutral wardrobe is timeless and classic. Of course you can add more fashionable pieces from time to time, but a good chambray shirt will be a great wardrobe staple today and five years from now. A great black blazer never goes out of style. A grey Patagonia Better Sweater will still be the same design ten years from now. A camel colored coat, well, you get the point.

4. Hey, It works for Jennifer Aniston! Don’t believe me? Look up Jennifer Aniston style on Pinterest and you will notice how put together, yet relaxed she always looks in neutral pieces. If its good enough for Rachel Green, its good enough for me.

Where to Start?

Not sure where to start. A few key pieces to begin investing in are: Denim, and not just jeans. Get a great denim dress. J. Crew, Gap, and Madewell always have some. They can be worn any season by changing up accessories and shoes. A chambray button down shirt goes with EVERYTHING!! Also a crisp, white button down shirt does too. Again, you can grab one at J.Crew, Gap, Madewell, or Old Navy. A good tee shirt in white, black and grey. I love Madewell’s tees. They are super comfy! As for me, I think I will continue to develop a great neutral wardrobe. I plan on cleaning out and editing my closet. (Don’t worry, I’ll still have pops of color) I just plan of investing more on good quality clothing that will last for years instead of clothes that I’ll be tired of after wearing a couple of times.

To prove my point to you, I grabbed 6 items out of my closet and started putting together outfits by switching pieces and accessories.

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1. Caslon Rounded V-neck tee, Nordstrom. $25 2. Rockaway Wash Skinny Jeans, J.Crew Factory. $47.50 (on sale) 3. Textured Bell Sleeve Sweater, Loft. $29.75 (on sale) 4. Chambray Shirt, J. Crew Factory. $41.50 (on sale) 5. Striped Boatneck T-shirt, J. Crew. $29.50 6. Excursion Quilted Down Vest, J. Crew. $89.99 (on sale)

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This and That

Happy Tuesday!! I don’t know about y’all, but it took all of last week for us to get back on track. This week feels much better and we are running smoother as a household. Now that Christmas is over, I’m totally ready for spring. I’m anxiously waiting for my new Stella & Dot spring samples. I can not wait for them to get here!! Every season it just gets better and better. I’m thinking about hosting my own trunk show at the end of the month to show off the new pieces and sell off some of my retired pieces (for half off). If any of you would be interested in stopping by and checking it out, let me know.

I got in part of my Loft order from the major sale that is going on. P.S. -It is still happening with an additional 60%-70% off sale items. This tee is going to be perfect for spring. They only have XS left in the Iced Lavender color. I sized up to a medium since the reviews said the sleeves run small and I’m glad I did. There is still so many cute things left for great prices. Go check it out!!

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Tee- Loft $12. Jeans- Mossimo, Target $29 Shoes- Qupid, Amazon (last season) Necklace and Rings- My Stella & Dot shop

 

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Loft -Seamed Tee (sold out this color)
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You can order these jeans from Target online and get them in short, regular or tall!
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Aven Layering Necklace $89
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Brier Sparkle Ring $29
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Signature Engravable Ring $59

http://www.stelladot.com/lindsayjcollar

Kicking Off the New Year!

Happy New Year! I’m a little late writing my New Year’s post, but I’ve been under a blanket trying to keep warm for most of this week. What a brutal start to a new year! The temperature hasn’t gotten higher than the mid 30’s this week, my kid still needs dental work after paying mega bucks in December, there is a strange light that keeps coming on in my car that I’m guessing a mechanic should look at (not just me, the manual and google), and the washing machine leaves a puddle every time we run it for the past few weeks. I would play the lottery, but I’m currently too broke to buy a ticket. However, I woke up this morning, my family is healthy, and we have a warm place to call home, so I refuse to sweat the small stuff. (I’ll just complain about it on my blog. Ha!)
Most of the blogs that I read have already wrapped up 2017 and explained how they changed and what they are looking forward to in 2018. Most of them asked their readers what they wanted to see more of this year. Well, as far as this blog is concerned, I have no idea where it’s going or what my goals are. I’m definitely not going to ask you what you want to see more of this year for fear that no one would answer me and I would feel like a big blogging failure. I just enjoy writing about family, fashion and home decorating and I hope that it may inspire someone out there. So for now, it’s going to remain a little hobby that I do when I can and when inspiration strikes. I do have some pretty big personal mile stones in 2018. This will be the year that I turn the big 4-0…..I have to pause for a minute and just let that soak in. Frankly, I have no idea how I got here! Wasn’t I just in my 20’s a couple of years ago??? I guess when you spend most of your 30’s having babies it’s just all a big blur. This will also be the year that I (hopefully) graduate with a degree in Elementary Education after student teaching this fall. And what will probably make me shed the most tears this year, is that my sweet Samuel will start school in the fall. I can handle 40 and I can handle insecurities about being in the classroom, but the thought of watching my baby walk down the hall at school and into a 4K classroom, makes me want to ball my eyes out. For real! I’m having heart palpitations right now, just thinking about it. He’s just a little bit spoiled rotten.
Enough reflection for now, let’s talk SALES!! And right now, Loft is having a big one. All sale items are 60% off with no code needed. Ya’ll, I love Loft. It has some really great pieces that are work wear appropriate but also look great with jeans on the weekend. It can sometimes be difficult to find clothes that aren’t too young looking or too old looking, especially when it comes to work wear. I have put together two looks for you with a couple of items I purchased back in December and you can get them a lot cheaper than I did! When I checked this morning, there were still a few sizes left in each of them, but if not there are so many other great things still up for grabs.

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I love a fair isle sweater and this one in lemon yellow can brighten a dreary winter day. Sale price is $27.
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I kept my jewelry simple with this adorable sweater and these Stella & Dot Luxe Sparkle Studs in blue (but they’re more of a lavender) $24.
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I’m a complete sucker for a simple white blouse and jeans and I couldn’t pass this one up!! It’s called the Vintage Romance Blouse and the sale price is $23.
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This is the sweetest shirt! Just look at the details!! And it looks great with these Stella & Dot Pave’ Arabesque Earrings. $59

I picked up this Seamed Long Sleeve Tee today in both of these colors. I think they will be great spring colors, will look amazing with some of the new Stella & Dot spring line (coming out tomorrow!!!) and for $11.95 a piece, why would I not grab them both?!?

Where to Shop

Sweater and Blouse:  www.loft.com

All jewelry:  www.stelladot.com/lindsayjcollar