Frugal Fashion Fav

Shoe Review: Rachel Roy

I’ve done my fair share of shopping since I’ve been in New York which, lets face it, is not abnormal. However, what is noteworthy is my new found obsession with shoes. While in DC, I got into what I’ll lovingly refer to as a “flats rut”. In my defense, walking a mile to and from my office in stilettos seemed like a surefire way to land myself in even less appealing footwear, say a cast to support an inevitable broken ankle. Sure, flats are practical and serve their purpose, but there is something about a fantastic pair of heels that just makes a girl feel like she is on top of the world. I believe it was Miss Marilyn who said, “Give the girl the right shoes and she can conquer the world.”

In my quest for world domination conquering NYC, I’ve been inspired by the fabulous footwear clacking down the sidewalk, hallways and subway stations and am slowly building up my shoe collection. One of my first weekends here, I hit up the DSW in Union Square. Now, I really only recommend this to anyone who really determined. It is incredibly crowded, requires a solid hour of sifting through shoe boxes and some serious guarding of potential purchases. For me, it is always totally worth it to snag two pairs of designer shoes at a third of their original price. And, since I’ve seen one of the pairs on ShopBop and a few other sites for sale, I thought it would helpful to provide a review. I always see great deals on shoes online but am afraid to purchase them since I have no knowledge of the fit or comfort.

The Rachel Roy Devyn Slingback Sandals immediately caught my eye at DSW. They are neutral enough to wear with anything, but a pop of neon and black snakeskin keeps them from being boring. At full price, these run $275 but on ShopBop they are $165 and at DSW I got them for just over $100. Yes, I’m giving myself a pat on the back right now.

Photo from ShopBop

I wore these for a rehearsal dinner (for my friend’s wedding) that involved the actual wedding rehearsal, cocktail hour, the dinner and then more cocktails. All in all, I was standing for almost 8 hours in these and was comfortable. They are easy to walk in, too! I went a half size up from my usual size and think that made a big difference in the comfort factor.

My only negative comment about these shoes is that while enjoying cocktails, we got stuck in some pretty intense rain and these shoes seriously suffered from the storm. They aren’t ruined by any means, but some of the black dye rubbed off on my dress, staining it, and the top band is puckering a bit which is somewhat visible below. While I don’t typically judge shoes based on how they perform after a good soaking, I would have been happier if they’d stood up a bit better, especially given the cost.

However, they still look and wear wonderfully and I would highly recommend both these shoes and this brand, Rachel Roy, if you’re looking for some sexy shoes that won’t have you hobbling home by the end of the evening.



20130801-093713.jpgHappy shopping!


Perfect Puffer Vests

I love that quilted down vests are making a comeback. I remember owning one in green and blue from Gap a few years ago but then got rid of them fearing they looked too juvenile and a bit too puffy.

Leave it to J Crew to turn the puffer vest into the perfect preppy fall look. They first showed this bright pink quilted vest a few months ago and I had to resist every urge to run to the store and snag it, despite the fact that it was 90+ degrees outside.

Excursion Vest from J Crew | $110

Now, I love J Crew just as much as the next twenty-something preppy-wannabe, however, there are certain things worth spending $100+ on and there are certain things that just aren’t. A bright pink quilted down vest falls in the “are not” category for me. There are too many knock-offs out there that are just as cute but less than half the price. Case in point:

This Lands End option comes in 11 different colors and is a steal at just $35!

Lands End Diamond Quilted Down Vest | On sale for $34.97

This option from Gap is also a great one, although slight more expensive.

GapFit Puffer Vest | $69.95 *(plus 25% off of your order when you use the code GAPCHEER)

If you’re in the market for a puffer vest, think about your budget before you buy. If you’re in a cold weather climate, you may want to pay extra to make sure it will keep you warm on even the most frigid days. However, if you’re in a more mild climate and want one of these puffy puppies just for the style, you can find a cheaper option with just a little bit of searching.

Make sure that you opt for a version that has some tailoring or quilting to prevent from looking like the Michelin man. Sure, he’s cute and all, but fashion mogul he is not.


Chambray and Polka Dot Perfection

I recently took a trip to my hometown of Orlando, Florida to get in some quality time with my family. Whenever I go home, shopping with my mom is on the calendar. What better way to bond than over massively discounted clothing?

I always make it a point to hit up the outlets and Target. The outlets are a no-brainer but Target? Really? YES. My family makes fun of me for the level of excitement I have regarding the Target in Altamonte Springs, Fl.

This little shopping excursion led me to two of the items on my must-have fall shopping list. Incidentally, the two items for which I’ve been scouring every store in DC and Arlington. A fitted chambray shirt and a polka dot button up shirt.


I am so pleased with these two purchases. The polka dot button up is from the J Crew Factory Store, but has disappeared from the online merchandise, likely due to its overwhelming popularity. They do have a superb silk striped option if you’re searching more for a staple graphic button up than for polka dots. Stripes or polka dots, you really can’t go wrong!

On the chambray shirt. I searched high and low, from Forever 21 to Nordstrom and back again for chambray shirt with the perfect amount of tailoring, a hint of stretch and a not too light, not too dark wash. I thought Target might be the place, but came up empty at the location near my house in Arlington. However, the Target in my hometown had a profusion of chambray – ombre, dark wash, light wash, western, tie-dye, strategically bleached – and of course, the Goldilocks version, not too light, not too dark, which I promptly snatched up for a mere $20. Again, gone on the website, but check out Christina Aguilera rocking the shirt on the cover of Lucky!

(Photo from Lucky Magazine)

I have to say, I didn’t even realize it was the same shirt until I bought this mag for my plane ride home and thought to myself, well now THAT looks like the perfect chambray shirt. Perhaps I should see where it is from in case I want to keep looking. Lo and behold, I gasped, it is the one and only chambray shirt from Target…of which I am the proud owner!

Are you searching for these items too? If you can’t find the two above, check out these options:

South Moon Under Cotton Chambray Button Down Shirt | $72
Chambray AND polka dots, all in one! J Crew Perfect Shirt in Chambray Polka Dot | $88
Gap Perfect Dot Shirt | $34.50 (in pink and navy)
Anthropologie Fitted Chambray Buttondown | $88

Have you found the perfect chambray shirt? What about the perfect polka dot piece for fall? Let me know!


Save on summer workout gear

I can’t believe Labor Day weekend kicks off on Friday. Summer really has come to an end. As we say goodbye to our bikinis, we all have the best of intentions to commit to maintaining our bikini bodies.

But every girl needs a little help staying motivated. Let’s face it, those pictures of Victoria’s Secret models you taped to the fridge only makes you open the door a bit faster so you can avoid the image of their perfectly toned abs and thighs glaring back at you in disapproval.

Time for a new approach. To keep up a gym routine (or encourage you to start one) why not supplement it with some stylish new additions? The end of summer is the perfect time to stock up on workout wardrobe staples. Warm weather items are put on major discount due to the change of seasons, but when working up a sweat, summer’s tanks and shorts are ideal.

It is no secret that my favorite workout gear outfitter is Lululemon, which is great news for me since their sale section is currently stocked up with great finds. I scored this polka dot racer back tank last week for $29.


There are plenty more items in the sale section on Lulu’s website, aptly titled “we made too much.” Amongst the tanks, sports bras and spandex shorts, you can also find some great deals on long sleeve shirts and jackets. Check the stores for even more great options, as the store typically has a different selection of sale merchandise than the website.

Transition Jacket | $79.00

Check out stores like Athleta, Target and even Old Navy. To score the best deals, look for summer’s bright, bold and neon colors which will be banished to the sale racks. Stock up on staples in these colors, such as sports bras and basic tanks. If you’ve been on the fence about that running skirt, now is the time to try one out without spending a fortune. Basic running and spandex shorts will also be on sale.
If you’re a resident of a warm weather state, do some online shopping since summer staples might not make your local sale racks.

The first step to looking good is feeling good, so go ahead,  treat yourself to a new workout outfit and debut at the gym – again, and again, and again!


Collar Necklaces

Collar Necklaces
Collar Necklaces by kerrychannon featuring a collar necklace

Statement necklaces are taking a whole new shape this fall. Enter the collar necklace. They started popping up on the runways last Fall and made a full fledged debut this Spring. While the word “collar” tends to conjure up images of leather, spikes and other punk-influenced fashion (let’s resist those 50 Shades of Grey references), these babies are about as sweet and feminine as they come.

The collar necklace is pretty self explanatory; it’s a necklace designed in the shape of a shirt collar. Simple enough, yes, but these bejeweled, sequined and metallic beauties are anything but!

I’ve included some of my favorites above but the options are endless. Some look exactly like a Peter Pan collar while others offer a more decorative aesthetic. The biggest advantage of the collar necklace? You can wear one with almost anything. A sequined version would take center stage with a black cocktail dress (or a little pink dress!), adding a fun, quirky twist to any black-tie outfit. You can also pair it with a simple t shirt for a funky look. Imagine how darling one of the beaded versions would look with a simple sweater in the fall.

Like all accessories, they range in price. DANNIJO is one of the most expensive brands, which I’ve included above. However, you can snag some budget versions at ASOS, Forever21, H&M and even Etsy!

Start your collar necklace collection with a budget-friendly version to see how you like the trend and then spring for a pricier version if you’re into it. This style screams “trend” to me – I’d be surprised if these are around by next Fall. So, I’d shy away from spending the big bucks, but that is no reason to not have some fun with this super cool trend, particularly since there are so many low cost options available! So, go forth and get your collar on!


Pants of All Colors…

Colored denim and pants are on everyone’s must-have list this season. And, with only a few months left of summer, nobody wants to spend an arm and a leg on this trend. Options from J Brand and other designer denim labels will run you around $200.

But aren’t you lucky? Gap is offering 30% off on all purchases through July 26th. Which means you can score a pair of their bright khakis for $35 and colored denim, with our without an ankle zipper detail for $49. Now that is a price you can feel good about and pants you will look good in!

The khakis have a slightly loose fit, so some purchasers report going down a size. They tend to fit curvier girls perfectly. The legging jeans fit tight, as one might expect given the name. You shouldn’t need to size up, as Gap jeans typically stretch out after 1-2 wears. Mint and coral are my favorites!

Colored Pants from Gap


As part of the Gap family, Old Navy is also offering 30% off all purchases. Conveniently, they just released a whole new selection of their Rockstar Super Skinny jeans which come in 14 colors! Taking into account the 30% off, you’ll pay only $25 a pair, so you can afford to get two!

The sale is happening in-stores and online (use the code JULY2012) through tomorrow. So what are you waiting for? Get to shopping!


Hair Tie Double Duty

Hair ties – can’t live with them, can’t live without them. Necessary at a moment’s notice to get the hair out of your face or for some reprieve from the summer heat. Throw one in the abyss of your purse and you might never find it again. So, there they sit on our wrists, ugly and distracting – and forever to remain…or so we thought!

Ladies, rejoice! A true “why didn’t I think of that” invention: Emi-Jay Hair Ties. These multi-functional hair ties are bright, bold and colorful, making them to look great in your hair AND fashionable on your wrist. Emi-Jay makes hair ties in neons, neutrals, patterns, polka dots, the possibilities are infinite but one thing is for sure. You can wear every option on your wrist like you meant for it to be there.

The best part (YES, there is more)? The soft, stretchy material is ideal because it does NOT dent your hair. All of that time you spent straightening won’t go to waste if your hair up!

The ingenious inventor even offers beaded styles to amp up the bracelet function and now sells headbands, too.

Check out some of the styles here:

The neon collection is the perfect way to weave in this season’s day-glo trend without going head to toe highlighter. $11.99 for 5 ties. (image courtesy of Emi-Jay)
This bejeweled version is fancy enough to serve as arm candy on a night out and functional enough to get your hair out of the way when you’re showing off your dance moves. $12.99 for 1 hair tie. (Image courtesy of Emi-Jay)
Don’t forget about the headbands, too! One of these can instantly turn a ponytail or bun into a chic hairstyle.

I bought the neon set this past week at South Moon Under. I have the green one on my wrist as I’m typing, and it looks pretty darn good! You can find other retail locations here, or just shop the Emi-Jay site to see how much you love them!


Sale Roundup: J. Crew and Ann Taylor Loft

I’m making this a quick one since I am bouncing around a lot here on the West Coast, but I had to share some of today’s sales with you.

The J. Crew Factory Store is running some nice specials on some of their classic pieces with some items up to an additional 40% off. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the Factory Store, it is basically the J. Crew outlet you’d find at your average outlet mall, but J. Crew was smart enough to but the steals and deals online. Now we can pick and choose our favorite items at our leisure, without having to fight our way through the masses and take down that crazy lady who thinks she is getting that last pair of pants. Er…ok, let’s just take a look at some of their best deals…

Factory Drawstring Day Dress – originally $79.50, on sale for $49.50. The perfect casual dress for any summer day. Throw it on with your favorite sandals and you’re ready to go!
Factory Bell Skirt in cotton – originally $54.50, on sale for $29.50. I own this skirt and blue and can attest, it is a versatile piece that you can pair with a tee or tank for the weekend or a button up for polished, work appropriate look.

Ann Taylor Loft is running two different sales today, both with pretty stellar savings! Now, it is no secret that I tend to make a lot of purchases from Loft and a significant percentage of my wardrobe can be attributed to the store. Well, with these savings, you can understand why! Online, you can score 30% off all purchases with the code SHOP30. In stores, you can rack up 50% off all items today as long as you shop from 12:00 pm – 7:00 pm. Check out their Facebook page to snag the deal.

Honey Stripe Knit Maxi Skirt – Originally $59.50. On sale for $54.99 and an additional 50% off – $27.50. Another incredibly versatile piece, pair with a tank or tee and a fun jacket.
Cotton Batik Carnation Print Tie Neck Peasant Tunic – originally 49.50, on sale for 50% off – $24.75. A bold, bright tunic top will help add an element of the unexpected to your wardrobe.

This is a great time to stock up on some of your summer staples. With prices this low, you really can’t afford NOT to treat yourself to something. It is Friday after all!


Sale Roundup!

My philosophy – a bad case of the Mondays can always be easily remedied with some retail therapy. An even quicker solution? Retail therapy at a discount! A good bargain has the potential to put anyone in a good mood.

Here are some Monday sales to help turn your frown upside down.

J. Crew – 30% off all sale items with online code SHOPNOW

Great deals on the dresses and pants in particular! Check out their accessories, too!

J Crew Dress Lucille Dress – $118+30% off = 84$

Nine West – 60% off select items

The perfect opportunity to stock up on some basics and some not-so-basics!

Nude pumps – $49 – perfect for summer!

Victoria’s Secret Semi-Annual Sale

This is a big one. Virtually of my undergarments have been purchased via the VS semi-annual sale, but why not think outside the bra, uhh box? Treat yourself to a bathing suit and some beach cover ups!

***One tip, this year’s suits run very small! If you’re in doubt of sizing, err on the side of caution and size up.

The Abbie Pom Pom Suit – Top $24 Bottom $19.50

Saturday Summer Style

A Saturday in DC in the summer holds infinite potential. A girl just never knows where she might find herself, so she has to be prepared for anything. This past Saturday, I went from a bridal shower, to a snazzy outdoor hotel bar, to the Pride parade and a Pride-celebration house party and miscellaneous other stops along the way.

How’s a girl to be ready for any spontaneous event that might present itself? My answer is a maxi skirt. The length instantly dresses up an outfit and it pairs so well with a casual top and a statement necklace that you can easily transition from one event to the next without looking over or under dressed.

I just blogged about my favorite new basic tank, so of course I had to break it out for the occasion. Here was my outfit of choice (I’m in the middle):

And where you can buy it all:

Saturday Summer Style

Saturday Summer Style by kerrychannon featuring maxi skirts

Seamless tank top
$24 –

Steve Madden leather shoes
$60 –

Oasis flat shoes
$36 –

MICHAEL Michael Kors gold watch
$250 –

Stella dot jewelry
$198 –

Stella dot jewelry
$138 –

Pintucked Maxi Skirt
$44 –

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