glasses girl

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Despite not showing my face on Fashion Huntress, you may or may not be aware that I wear glasses. I’ve actually worn glasses since 2nd grade. For many years, I was actually totally embarrassed by my glasses (ridicule galore as a kid). So, I reverted to wearing contacts…that is, until I developed an allergy to contacts and was told I couldn’t wear them anymore by my doctor. Oh boy, readers, how I struggled with this news. I knew how ridiculous it was to be upset, but I felt like a kid in grade school all over again! A few years ago, however, I really started to embrace my glasses as an accessory and a part of my personality. I don’t show my face on Fashion Huntress because I like the vague anonymity, but I certainly no longer hide behind my glasses. I wear them proudly and embrace them. It’s funny how such a little thing can end up feeling so empowering as we settle into ourselves. I want to thank Firmoo for again reminding me of this process. I’m totally swooning (and seeing clearly) over my new glasses…

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Dress: Michael by Michael Kors via Savers ($7, retails for $100)

Sweater: Kenji via Savers ($2, known retail)

Leggings: TJ Maxx ($5 marked down from $10)

Necklace: Apt 9 via Kohl’s ($6 marked down from $18)

Boots: Not Rated via DSW ($60 marked down from $75) here

Glasses: c/o Firmoo

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Fashion Huntress tips:

1) Firmoo is an online shop that offers various styles, shapes, and colors of glasses.  They even allow you to order your first pair for free. 

First Pair Free Program

http://www.firmoo.com/free-glasses.html

There’s also a buy one, get one free promotion going on right now for the holidays. As you know, I do not ever accept payment for my posts. I did, however, accept the glasses and was asked to give my honest opinion. My honest opinion is: double thumbs up. I haven’t taken the glasses off since I got them and have had more people notice these new glasses than any pair in the past. Here’s a close up of the pair I chose:

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First time wearer, long time fan! 

2) This dress is clearly a summer shift dress! And you already know what I’m going to say, right, readers? Pull out your summer dresses! Wear them in the winter with sweaters and leggings! Since that’s not a new tip, I’ll also add that I’ve recently learned about Savers and am a huge fan. The prices are slightly higher than at Goodwill (by $1-$4), though the quality and selection are equal if not slightly better. Additionally, if you sign up for their emails, you will learn when they have discount days, which are often on Mondays. This last Monday, all clothing was 50% off. The shift dress was regularly $14 in the store, but I snagged it for $7 on the discount day. To find a Savers near you, you can visit their website at: http://www.savers.com/

Anyone else ever order glasses online? Love Savers? Thanks so much for stopping by, readers! I appreciate it so very much!

back(pack) to basics

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I have to admit, readers, that there are some things in the fashion world and the world of shopping that tend to baffle me. Jeans and backpacks are two of the items that I never seem to get quite right. Today, however, I’ve gotten these basics down pat with a little help from my friends (see tips below). What better friend to showcase the fact that I’ve mastered these basics than with man’s best friend (Belle the dog, as she is affectionately known in my family). I’m totally back(pack) to basics, and feeling like we really all do get by with a little help from our friends.

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Top: Ann Taylor Loft ($4 marked down from $60)
Jeans: Levi’s via the Levi Store ($35 marked down from $80)
Shoes: Sam Edelman via Nordstrom Rack ($50 marked down from $90)
Backpacks: c/o Carrot
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Fashion Huntress tips:
1) If you are looking for a fun and fashionable backpack, Carrot is definitely the place to go. The quality of the backpacks is great; most of the backpacks are a thick fabric and have a ton of pockets inside. You can see my detail pictures below. But, seriously, these aren’t the backpacks we all remember from the 80s (mine was totally My Little Pony or something); these are backpacks with a seriously hip update. If you want to see more of these backpacks and others, Carrot is the place to go.
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2) If you live in the Chicagoland area, the Levi store on Michigan Avenue is well worth a trip. The entire back of the store is sale and clearance jeans and a TON of them. Unlike many other jeans clearance sections, there are endless options for jeans in various sizes, colors, and fits at the Levi store. Additionally, I worked with a lovely and talented gentleman named Alex who really took a ton of time helping me with sizes and fittings. I have to say, it was the least painful jeans trying-on in the history of the Fashion Huntress. I came in totally confused and left completely confident. I highly recommend looking for Alex next time you’re in the area for a great fitting and run-down on jeans!
Anyone else have a favorite backpack? Loving the updated prints? Thanks so much for stopping by, readers!

classic (with carrot)

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After a few extra bright outfits, I decided to opt for a look in neutrals. Yes, neutrals a la Huntress definitely means animal print. Toss in a pair of skinny dress pants, heels, and a Carrot bag, this look feels very classic. As one of my favorite fashion icons, Jenna Lyons, says, “As far as I’m concerned, leopard is a neutral.” A woman after my own heart. A google image search of “animal print as a neutral” pulls up some amazing looks, by the way. I’ll be back…I’m going to be busy with this image search for a while…

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Top: vintage St. John’s via Savers ($4, retails for approx $300+)

Pants: Banana Republic ($20 marked down from $90)

Shoes: Qupid via DSW ($25 marked down from $50), here

Necklace: Vera Wang for Kohl’s ($5 marked down from $44) (cannot stop wearing it)

Bags: c/o Carrot

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Fashion Huntress tips

1) Personally, I like to invest in very “wearable” bags and purses. I wear so many prints and colors, I like having neutral purses to pick from when going out. Neutral definitely does not need to mean boring, however! There’s some great neutral, classic, and vegan bags via Carrot. I particularly liked the tote bag as a stylish option for carrying around my work shoes (versus my confusing “shoe bag” ie “whatever I can find in my closet to carry my heels in.”).  Additionally, If you’re looking for a stylish and fun backpack, Carrot is the place to go. Look for my upcoming post for a peek at some of their fabulous backpacks. 

2) I don’t have many rayon fabrics, so I had to do some research regarding the care and cleaning of rayon. Despite being a synthetic fabric, rayon requires careful care and washing. One of my absolute live-by tips in the shopping world is “be cautious with your cleaning!” My sweaters, cardigans, and dress pants almost never go in the washing machine. Dry clean only really does mean dry clean only if you want your nice pieces to truly last you years. One of the ways I try to reduce my dry cleaning cost is by using layers. I always wear a long sleeve tee shirt or tee shirt under my sweaters and then just wash the tees after every use. Sweaters really don’t need to be cleaned every time you wear them if you are layering and don’t spill on them (that’s the big trick for me!). If you want to know more about the care of rayon, you can read this interesting article. 

Anyone else have animal print tips? Rayon feedback? Thanks so much for stopping by, readers! I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

merry, bright, and bold

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Maybe it’s the warm(er) weather and/or the rain here, but I find myself really enjoying the fact that I can still run my errands outside and walk to and from the subway comfortably (aka not fighting snow and wind). Mid-December outdoor walks? Totally a dream come true in the Midwest. The fiance and I even grilled over the weekend, readers. That’s how you know you’re in Midwest winter heaven: you’re outdoors grilling in 40 degree weather and loving every minute of it. In light of this warm and festive spirit, I pulled out my brightest, most neon look. I’m feeling very merry, bright, and bold.

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Dress: c/o Oasap available here
Pink coat: Gap ($25 marked down from $130)
Black coat: North Face (approximately 10 years old, for real)
Mittens: c/o Oasap available here (for $3!)
Lucite heels: Rock and Republic via Kohl’s ($5, marked down from $75)
Tights: TJ Maxx ($5 marked down from $10)
Necklace: Vera Wang for Kohl’s ($5 marked down from $44)
Bracelet: Kenneth Jay Lane Couture via Rue La La ($15 marked down from $150)
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Fashion Huntress tips:
1) I’ve decided that “outerwear” can totally be “inner wear.” I think this coat is probably an outdoor coat, but it actually functions more like a blazer in winter time. This coat/blazer definitely has me thinking more about the potential to use more outdoor pieces indoors, especially during winter. And, of course, there’s no easier way to go shopping than in your own closet! Check out your “coat” collection. You may find, like me, that a few of your coats can actually serve as an indoor blazer. I’ve found that this also works with ponchos, capes, and vests. Happy closet shopping, readers!
Btw, jacket was last shown here, also as an indoor/outdoor coat:
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 2) I’ve been wearing this statement necklace all the time lately; as you can see from my last few posts, this necklace is really versatile.
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 To invest in a great, high quality statement necklace, you don’t need to spend a ton! I do, however, like to pick-up statement necklaces that will match a lot of outfits. I also often pick neutral colored stones and gems, and a necklace that covers a lot of “surface area” for use with otherwise plain or neutral tops. 
Anyone else have a favorite statement necklace these days? Loving holiday brights? Thanks so much for stopping by, readers! Happy mid-week!

sparkle and shine

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‘Tis the season to wear all things shiny and sparkly. Seriously, I can’t even stop myself. But really, why would I even want to stop myself? I say, bring on the bling! It’s totally the season to sparkle and shine.

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Dress: c/o Oasap , available here

Leggings: Banana Republic ($17 marked down from approx $90)

Shoes: Vera Wang for Kohl’s via Savers ($8, retail for approx $90) IMG_2926

Fashion Huntress tips:

1) Long sleeve dresses are totally where it’s at in fall and winter, though they are a bit difficult to find. Personally, I like long sleeve dresses versus cardigans so that you can see the full shape and style of the dress. However, when a long sleeve dress is not an option, you can always opt for layering under and over with your spring and summer dresses. I always love to layer under dresses with long sleeve tees and denim (of course). There’s also a huge selection of long sleeve dresses for great prices at Oasap.

2) For dresses that are on the short side, I always opt for leggings instead of tights. Even if your tights are completely opaque, they are still tights, and may not really work with a shorter dress. In more conservative work environments, I always opt for thick leggings when wearing anything that doesn’t meet the “hands down by your sides” rule. When you put your arms by your sides, if your dress hemline doesn’t go past your fingertips, I opt for leggings or pants instead of tights. 

Anyone else have rules of thumb for leggings versus tights? Loving long sleeve dresses? Thanks so much for stopping by, readers! I appreciate it! Happy Monday!

winter whirlwind

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Oh my…it’s that time of year, readers. I admit that I can get a little caught up in the winter whirlwind around this time of year. This year, predictably, is no different. Even my to-do list starts to look confusing, which is an indication that I probably need to slooooooow doooooown. So, I tried to slow down a little today by doing one of the things that I love best: putting together a new look from a couple of new items and lots of older items. I’m reminding myself to take it easy and remember the joy that comes from the season, so as to avoid further succumbing to a winter whirlwind. So, cheers to a relaxing and enjoyable holiday season, readers!

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Top: Ann Taylor Loft ($20 marked down from $70)
Skirt: Ann Taylor Loft ($15 marked down from $70)
Necklace: Vera Wang for Kohl’s ($5 marked down from $44)
Shoes: Qupid via DSW ($25 marked down from $50), still available here
Tights: Hue ($3 marked down from $13)
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Fashion Huntress tips:
1) This is the time to hit up Ann Taylor Loft, readers, if you’re looking for a good deal. The $4.88 rack is marked down to $1.88 at some stores! And, the rest of the sale section is generally about 50% off. Loft can be very hit or miss for me, but this particular sale was a definite home run. Most of what is on sale is work wear: dresses, skirts, and tops. I saw some pants, but not many, and not very many sweaters. However, the skirts and tops are interesting prints and colors. Even the $4.88 rack was pretty full. Remember to look for it as the rack labelled “FINAL SALE $4.88 and under.” 
2) The clearance rack at Kohl’s is where it’s at for statement necklace for $4-$7. They now have a Juicy Couture line, and some of those pieces have already hit the clearance rack. Additionally, they continue to sell the Vera Wang, Lauren Conrad, and Jennifer Lopez lines. I think the jewelry is very good quality; I haven’t had any issues with any of the pieces I’ve gotten there as of yet. They also have a new rewards program that is free. You essentially just “sign up” for a free “tracking card” that tracks your purchases and gives you points, regardless of your payment method. You can read more about the program here: www.kohls.com/feature/rewards.jsp
Anyone else have luck at the Loft sale? With finding great holiday deals? Thanks so much for stopping by, readers! I always appreciate it so very much!

loving layers

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Happy December, readers! If there’s one thing I love about winter, it’s the fact that I can start layering up even more than I do in fall. I’m all about the remix and rematch in winter and today’s look is no exception. As you can see in the photos below, these pieces have been well loved throughout seasons passed…

Patterned pants:

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Plaid shirt:

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Toss on a sweater, and it’s a winter party, readers. Today, I’m totally loving winter layers.

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Plaid shirt: Gap ($16 marked down from $45)
Sweater: Gap ($7 marked down from approx $60)
Pants: Gap ($35 marked down from $55)
Shoes: Nine West via Savers ($8, retail for $100)
Necklace: Vera Wang for Kohl’s ($5 marked down from $44)
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Fashion Huntress tips:
1) I don’t know about anyone else but I find Black Friday slightly overwhelming some years. I know, are you shocked? Shouldn’t this be the #1 day for the Fashion Huntress? Perhaps, but the past few years, I’ve found that retail has changed so much, you can find the typical “Black Friday” sales many other times of the year. So, if you decided not to shop this year on Black Friday, you have plenty of opportunities to do so in stores and online this week and many weeks to come! Gap, Old Navy, and Banana Republic still have ongoing sales this week in stores and online. 
2) Winter is one of the easiest seasons to re-style what you already have by adding layers. I found these pants a couple of years ago at Gap as “summer pants.” However, by adding a sweater, scarf and/or button down, these pants easily transition to a “winter white” pant. I like to invest in basic/neutral sweaters and then layer them over clothes I already have, like patterned button downs and patterned pants. Neutrals sweaters are especially easy to find at places like Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, Target, Marshall’s and TJ Maxx. Many stores already have their “fall sweaters” on clearance, so you can snag them for a good price and wear them all winter.
Anyone find some good finds on Black Friday? Cyber Monday? I hope everyone had a nice weekend! Thank you for stopping by!