Weekend Wear: Denim

If you see me this summer, chances are I’m wearing any one (or all) of these pieces. Like memories, I’ve picked ’em up along the way: second-hand boyfriend jeans from someone who didn’t want them anymore, chambray tank on sale, a black lace bralette I love so much I bought in multiple colors and a straw hat I found (really) at the general store. They’re all new, but feel so comfy and familiar. Denim is like that: soft and easily worn and yet, somehow, always fits great and looks even better.

I rounded up some of my favorite similar pieces here:

Straw fedora

Madewell’s boyjean

Chambray racerback tank

Epicure sandal 

Black lace bralette 

To see what else I’m in love with fashion/makeup wise, check out this Pinterest board.

love & light,

J

PS. I’m over at Brit+Co. talking about all the ways to wear summer leather.

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Spring Look: Makeup Favorites

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Before we even begin, let’s talk about my lazy eye in this pic. Do excuse it. I have been wearing contacts since I was nine and every once in awhile I wind up with an infection that leaves me looking like I belong in a bell tower somewhere…

 

My makeup/hair/beauty routine has been about the same since 7th grade. To say I’m an au-natural kind of girl is an understatement, and obviously, with two dreadlocks and a mane like that, a polished and primped look isn’t my default.

I’ll always stay true to that on some level. It’s who I am. But let’s face it (heh, heh, get it?) I need to grow up and into a more adult beauty routine. Like, put some real makeup on and look like the educated, responsible 23 year old woman that I have grown up and in to.

So! I’m on a beauty journey and I’m racking up some serious rewards points at Ulta. Some new things have been well worth taking the chance and spending the money and some have been a bust. Here are my spring favorites, the things that are perfect for using/wearing on a chill day.

1. Clairisonic Mia 2 ($150): YES this is expensive and if you have naturally beautiful skin, just skip down to numero dos. But I have struggled with skin issues since high school. I’ve been to dermatologists, tried a million prescription and over the counter products and nothing has come close to the magic of the Mia 2. It’s easy to use… just wet your face, put some cleanser on the brush head and hit start. I love this product instruction guide and user tutorial.

I bought it in January, yes I’m behind the times, but my skin has never been as gorgeous as it is today and I really believe this baby did the trick.

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2. Philosophy Purity Facial Cleanser ($25-$35) – Again…in terms of skincare, nothing cleans and feels as good as this product. It says it’s fragrance free but I think it smells like Eucalyptus to me…super fresh! This and the Mia are like my Batman and Robin of skin care.

3. Big Easy Complexion Perfector ($38): I blogged about this before but it’s worth repeating. I have normal to oily skin, especially in the spring and summer, and this foundation (more like BB cream) goes on like a liquid but finishes like a powder. I love the matte look, plus it’s a light to medium coverage which is nice for chill spring and summer days outside. PLUS it has SPF 30, and SPF is a makeup must for me. No wrinkles ever please and thank you.

And the packaging is beautiful.

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4. Maybelline Color Sensational Vivids ($8): Drugstore price, amazing pigmentation and when I’m really down playing my makeup for the day I think lip color is the easiest way to incorporate a bright, springy vibe. I’m wearing Fuchsia Flash and I absolutely love it, and I think the color will continue to translate well as I get darker during the summer.

The final frontiers of my makeup journey include finding THE PERFECT MASCARA (for the love, please help me, leave your fav in the comments!) and finding a brow pencil I like and learning how to even use it. I have light brown lashes and even lighter brows, and while I’m not crazy about the bold brow trend, I do want some definition.

What are your favorite mascaras or brow pencils? Do you love investing in name brand or are you a drugstore kind of girl?

XO

J.

 

Warby Parker Home Try-On

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I first discovered Warby Parker when doing some work related research on interactive annual reports. This company’s annual report just about takes the cake: fun, funky and spirited. But as I surfed the site, I became really interested in the actual product they were selling: glasses that give back. In a “one-for-one” fashion similar to TOMS, WP helps people all over the world gain access to better vision.

That philosophy, combined with the super affordable $95 price point, made a buyer out of me.

I ordered a Warby Parker Home Try-On. For FREE, you can choose 5 frames to try and WP will ship them to your house for you to keep  for the next 5 days. Try ’em on, wear ’em around, share on social media and garner feedback from your followers.

These were my home try-on picks:

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I was mostly looking forward to Griffin. I loved the keyhole and the summery color, but these frames are meant for bigger heads (and noses). They slid right off my face, every time. WP does this really awesome thing where if your frames don’t fit perfectly, you can go get them adjusted by any professional, send WP the receipt and they’ll reimburse you. Well played, WP.

I posted the top picks to Instagram & Facebook, and people were really surprisingly interested/invested in which to pick! My people are just cool like that. The top two picks were Griffin & Reilly. It was an even split down the middle. Ah!

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Ultimately, it came down to fit. The Reilly frame fit like a glove, and there was something chic about the oversized, dark frames that I loved. I just wasn’t sure the Griffin’s could be fitted to perfection as the Reilly’s were. Besides, I have a cheap pair of round sunnies that I LOVE, so choosing a different shape this time offered some diversity.

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I’m excited to have big girl sunnies! Up until this point, I bought $10 cheap frames from gas stations. I know, I’m grown’ up.

Have you tried Warby Parker yet? Where do you usually shop for frames? What are your favorite brands? Tell me in the comments!

XO

J.

Shop Local

IMG_7193 Big city livin’ is not something I take for granted. I can find a place to eat any hour of the night (with drive-thrus!), we can partake in just about any form of entertainment imaginable, and we are just an hour’s drive from some of the coolest & happenin’-est cities for young people in the country, like Austin.

But when it comes to shopping, Southern Oklahoma is still my favorite spot. Local boutiques like the Lucky Rose, the Pink Pistol and Bliss are some of the most unique and impressively curated shops I’ve ever been to. Whenever I’m wearing pieces from any of those boutiques, I always get asked a million “Where’d ya get that?” questions…My finds range from funky to rare. Whenever I am in town, I go crazy shopping and browsing all my favorite places.

This weekend, I got to enjoy wine at the Lucky Rose Spring Fling event. It was an after-hours shopping extravaganza. The place was packed with ladies shopping, sharing, sipping and laughing.  It felt so cool, so forward, so exciting to be a part of –  as a guest and as a hired designer. Lisa Rose, the shop owner, is always pushing the envelope and blowing me away with new, fun and innovative ideas for her business and for Tishomingo, Oklahoma.

Evites I designed for the Lucky Rose's Spring Fling event

Evites I designed for the Lucky Rose’s Spring Fling event

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Infinity scarf from Murray on Main in Tishomingo, OK

Midi rings and chambray top from Bliss Boutique in Durant, OK

Midi rings and chambray top from Bliss Boutique in Durant, OK

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The ultimate underdog, Teddy

When I wasn’t shopping, I was eating with my parents, watching movies with friends, golfing and attending baby showers. It was a great weekend.

J.

Kelly Moore Bag: Chapel

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Guys…I am so in love with my new Kelly Moore Bag, the Chapel. I may be an exclusive, lifelong lover and carrier. From now on, life as I know it will be categorized by “before I bought a Kelly Moore Bag” and “after I bought a Kelly Moore Bag.”

Kidding. Sort of.

I am a bag lady by heart. I love all kinds, big and small. Weekenders, classic purses, messengers, totes, backpacks…I am always buying a new bag, switching up what I’m currently carrying or on the hunt for my next favorite. When I bought my Canon Rebel T2i in college, I ordered it over and phone and told the store clerk to just send me the cheapest camera bag in stock. What arrived on my doorstep was the Titanic of camera bags: huge, bulky and black. Superbly ugly. And worse, it was functional only as a camera bag…Throwing in a book or tablet was not an option. Thus, I spent a semester carrying two, giant bags two and from photography class: my camera bag and my backpack. It made for an uncomfortable commute all semester long.

As of a few weeks ago, I was still stuck with that ugly black bag. I wanted something a little more versatile but still able to protect my gear and all my new lenses while traveling. The Kelly Moore Bag quickly rose to the top of my search list. I perused the site, fell in love, watched the videos on the bags and decided the Chapel was definitely for me. While KM has bags specifically designed for men, I liked that the Chapel in mushroom color was androgynous enough that Cory wouldn’t mind carrying it if we were traveling. The Chapel has a removable basket, which is great for when I’m out and about without plans to shoot. The bag, sans basket, operates like an everyday catchall but with enough pocket options to easily store my iPad, notes, notebooks, credit cards and little items like thumb drives and lipgloss. It’s easily the best bag I own, and can see adding to my collection as life changes (supposedly the best diaper bag ever, mammas).

Downside: they’re expensive. But after all my research, they will last you quite some time. I never mind paying a little more for something that is worth the investment. I have spent $100 on a bag and have it show signs of wear & tear just weeks later. So far, the Chapel is the sturdiest, manmade leather bag I have ever carried.

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I’ve carted this baby around with me everywhere…From Austin to work to out with friends. I’ve worn it as a backpack, messenger style and as a shoulder bag…all in one week. It keeps things interesting and it is definitely built for keeping up with me and everything in my life.

Put one on your V-day wish list 🙂

XO

J.

Weekend Wear: Icons

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I’ve already blogged about my love for inspiration vs. imitation & two unlike things paired together. This weekend, my style choice was inspired by two of my favorite musical icons – Elvis and Biggie. 
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Elvis was the original white guy with swag & soul, long before J. Tim was thought of. Growing up, I spent summers & holidays at my Mimi & “Rock N Roll Kevin’s” house. Rock, as we lovingly called him, had a minor obsession with The King. In addition to a black ‘n’ white, Jailhouse Rock-inspired room, their home phone would ring to the tune of Jailhouse Rock. Dancing to this Elvis track with abandon is a beloved childhood memory of mine. So when I found these skinnies at Forever 21, I had to take them home. They felt both fresh & nostalgic.

I love skinnies for a million reasons. They’re comfy, fitted & my little legs don’t let lost in them. These vertical stripes had me feeling (and looking!) thinner & taller. I love them tender, y’all.

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Onto icon number 2: Biggie. I’ve pretty much wanted to be black since the Spice Girls (Scary Spice was my favorite). I read Roots at an inappropriately young age, became obsessed with black literature & went on to study it in college through my minor in English. And in college, you can’t study black lit (or any lit) without talking about Biggie. He was a genius. I wrote a paper at the end of my sophomore year over the evolving lyrics/rhythms of black music and Biggie’s “Things Done Changed” was a focal point of my piece. It was, of course, never published but is one of the best things I think I have ever written.

I listen to “Juciy” every morning on my way to work.

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So when I found this sweatshirt with baby Big on the front, I had to have it. I was over hoodies in 2005 and have been wearing sweatshirts since. I usually wear one of my mom’s  oversize, 1980’s editions but I am happy to add this to my collection. Biggie was into sweaters, too. He also really did not give a flying eff what anyone thought of him, and that only added to his persona. He was hugely overweight in an industry where perception & persona was everything. He was also extremely dark skinned, with a crook in his eye. Being very dark, or very pale, or very anything, is undesirable in our society. We want to be exotic & flirt with the boundary lines of what is beautiful, but not actually cross those lines. Because if we cross them, society will annihilate you.

Biggie knew this, and instead of hiding his perceived flaws he used them to his advantage. He named himself Biggie. He was unapologetic about his weight & skin tone & quirks and rapped as if he was at no disadvantage to anyone else on the scene. And it worked: he was magnetic. That’s a little inspiration I take with me into my weekend wear: I can wear what I want, be what I want and do so unapologetically. And guess what? You can, too.

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Weekend Wear

 

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I shop in the men’s section. A lot.

Sometimes its from a store and sometimes its from my husband’s closet, but I’m always wearing something certifiably “man”. I have a thing for androgyny and duplicity, and I like exploring both in my wardrobe (and hair, note the dreadlocks). Here, I’m wearing my husband’s tee from T.J. Maxx.

I also have thing for breaking the rules. For example, I am wearing some super comfy leggings here. As pants. Whoever started the leggings-as-pants hate fest is, well, a hater. What better way to show off some leg during the fall than with leggings? I say as long as you’re comfortable with ’em, rock ’em.

Someone in high school told me mixing brown with black is a wardrobe no-no. Which, obviously, I find to be complete bullshit. I love both colors and mixing my black leggings with my brown, leather Steve Madden’s made for one cozy/cool outfit.

What fashion rules do you love breaking?

J.