Thursday, January 30, 2014

Spruce Up Your Desk!

I have been working on perfecting this space since October! And I am finally ready to share it with you all and thought what a perfect way--H54F!!  I am in absolute love with my new spruced up desk space.  So it has made my week--since because of the Polar Vortex and six inches of snow I haven't worked much this week!  I highly encourage you all do spruce up where you blog too, let me tell you I sit here on my computer SO much more now because of my beautiful surroundings.  

Let's start from the beginning... my desk space used to look like this.  DRAB. 

So I knew I wanted to spruce it up and naturally went to Pinterest for some ideas.  My brain was on overdrive which is how I work best.  I cannot have a concrete plan because the best products come from my brain when I am sporadic--to an extent.  So I turned to some of my favorite Etsy shops and even found a few new favorite shops to buy a bunch of things that I would eventually put towards my desk space.    I will show you a lot of photos so you can see it all and then I will give you the low down of where I shopped!

So let's talk where to shop! I hope you check out these shops--they truly offer unique products and who doesn't like to support small businesses!  

I have raved on and on about Studio Mucci before here.  This tassel garland is called the Mini Golden Grey and it is perfect.  I set my ideas around decorating with this garland, just like I did with my bedding.  So it set the tone with gold, peach, shades of white, grey, and I decided to throw in pops of aqua.  

WFT is such a beautiful and unique shop.  I discovered them through Aubrey Kinch from The Kinch Life and I am so happy that I did because bringing in the mini Alfred into my life and my desk space was such a great decision.  Here is an example of the mini Alfred which is similar to mine.  Mine just has solid gold glitter antlers.  Little ole Alfred is actually my favorite piece on my wall and I hope to buy something else from WFT again someday when I am sprucing up another space.

three and four:  Pearls and Pastries 
All of the prints and sequin hangers come from Pearls and Pastries and are made by Miss Lauren.  To say I am obsessed with her shop is an understatement. The small sequin hangers are actually ornaments and so when I took down my Christmas tree, on my wall they went!  I ordered five prints to go on the wall and one photo frame.  Her print collection grows almost daily and she often has sales, so check her out for sure

*just to let you know the frames are from the dollar store and I just painted them with different paints from Hob Lob!*

five: Cuptakes
Cuptakes is not an Etsy store, rather than an app on iTunes.  Each month they release new backgrounds for your computer and phone.  This background came with the January update and I thought was a perfect match with my color palette.  It is gold and it is glitter. Yes and yes.

Unfortunately Tilly Maison has closed down for the time being.  Luckily for me, I was able to grab on of her lucite trays.  The tray was bought to be a home for my keyboard when I am not using it.  You know to be pretty on display.  But in reality, it has become a catch all for things in my pockets, cords, business cards, and even my tweezers!  Either way, it is a blush color with metallic gold polka dots so it fits the scene perfectly whether it is just for prettiness or for pretend organization.

seven: Threshold
This is actually a hurricane candle holder from Target.  However, I liked the size and the gold appeal that I am using it as my pen/pencil/scissors/cords container.  It is not online anymore but here are some similar products by Threshold.

Well that is it! There are a few other things sitting on my desk that I didn't talk about and if you want to know where any of them came from, do ask!  I will be happy to tell you.  What did you think?  The space really has changed my attitude towards sitting down and blogging.  I just look around and feel happier.  

Illamasqua's Bright Cheeks

Are you sick of make up recommendations by me yet? Haha, I am back and again with products I ordered because of a Jaclyn Hill video!

Illamasque was a brand I had heard of but had never seen in any of the make up stores I shop in.  I actually had to order them from Sephora's online shop.  Seriously these two blushes are amazing.  When you swatch them, it feels like you are running your hand over the softest material ever made.

I love love love love Lover.  The shade looks crazy orange I know but when applied to your face, it gives a beautiful glow that is a tad peachy.  Hussy is a lot brighter when applied and trust me a little goes a long long way here.  I can see Hussy being a summer time favorite once I have some more color to my skin.  Despite their high price tag, I must say these two blushes have quickly replaced my MAC go to blushes on a daily basis.  Another great find fore sure.  Thanks Jaclyn!

Do you have any perfect blush shades that you love! Do tell!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

The Perfect Neutral Eye

One of my favorite pastimes is watching beauty gurus on YouTube. Jaclyn Hill is by far my favorite.  She is fun to watch because she is real. She knows her stuff, gives it to her viewers straight up, and is funny.  She has a way of posting a video and and talking about a product and before the video is over, I have already ordered the products to try!  Call me crazy, I know!

These three eyeshadows are definite HITS.  They are so smooth--like butter--and last well over all day long.  The color pay off is exactly what it looks like in the pan and simply glides on without effort.

I use Champagne Quartz on my lid, Camel in my crease as my transition color, and then Toast (which is BY FAR my favorite) in the lower V of my crease.  Champagne Quartz gives a shimmery glow to your lid that is very pretty.  Camel is a close match to MAC's Soft Brown (which is my go to transition shade).  And of course, Toast is a deep carmel meets dirt brown shade that may not look like the most beautiful in the pan, but ooooooh it is so pretty on.  

So once again Jaclyn was right, gave perfect advice and this is now my go to look.  If you like neutral shades and don't mind high end products, check out these three by Bobbi Brown today!  

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

My Perfect Concealer Hunt

For over a year now, I have been trying to find the perfect concealer.  Oh you know, one that covers my dark circles, doesn't settle into my lines, doesn't cake up, and looks natural.  I have tried everything from drug store brands to moderately high end concealers to always coming back tot he store to try to find something else, something that works better.

Today I will share with you my hunt.  My under eye areas are a dark purple/black no matter how much sleep I get, my varying stress levels, and the amount of water I drink.  I just can't seem to win in that department. So wearing concealer is mega important for my face when wearing make up.

I first started with Sonia Kashuk's hidden agenda II concealer palette.  This palette comes with four sections (two concealer shades, one neutralizer, and one translucent powder).  As you can see from the picture above, I went to town with lighter of the two concealer shades.  However, this palette is not for your under eye.  It will cake up and appears too thick when applied to that area.  I found this palette to great for covering up spots (i.e. acne, dark spots, scars, and blemishes).  I will repurchase this palette for the latter purpose.  You can find this palette at Target for $10.49.

On hunt then continued to NYX.  I decided to give the HD Photogenic Concealer in Glow a try.  This concealer again was not the answer for me.  It did cover, but it settled into fine lines and seemed to flake off with wear.  I did find a purpose for it though! I use this as my eyelid primer before applying MAC's Painterly Paint Pot.  On my eyelids the concealer provides even coverage and truly enhances my eyeshadow's staying power.  I have already repurchased this concealer.  You cant in this wand at Target and Ulta for $4.99.

At this point in time, I had fallen in love with MAC Cosmetics for blush and eyeshadow colors.  So I decided to give their concealers a go.  I had heard Jaclyn Hill and Nicole Guerriero go on and on about the Pro Longwear concealer so off to the makeup counter I went.  The MAC makeup artist there said that Pro Longwear was not the way to go so I listened and purchased the Mineralize Concealer in NW25.  Summer was upon me at this time and I instantly was sold on this coverage.  My face was tan and it did its job covering what was left of my black cirlces.  It was light and from what I could tell just what I wanted.  Then fall and winter came back into my life, my tan quickly went away, and my black circles came back with a vengeance.  It was then that I knew the Mineralize is just a summer time concealer for me.  You can get this at any MAC counter for $24.

After this discovery, I went back to MAC and again asked for the Pro Longwear.  But again the artist told me how bad it was and that it wasn't for me.  This time she talked me into the Studio Finish Concealer in NW25. I. Hate. This. Concealer.  It is in a pot and you have to apply it with your finder or a brush. I can't describe the feeling it gave my skin, but I didn't like it at all.  And this is the only purchase that I have not been able to find a secondary job for--so it just sits in my drawer.  You can get this at any MAC counter for $22.

All of this lead me to the newest rave of Jaclyn and Nicole, and I ordered the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in Custard.  Please let me rave for a second.  This stuff is magical.  It provides flawless coverage, it is truly creamy, smooths on like a dream, and is the perfect highlighting concealer.  I apply it with my angled flat top kabuki from Sigma.  I cannot say enough a bout this little gal! You can pick it up at Sephora for $28.

My last stop was back to MAC because I had watched one more of Jaclyn's videos and I decided I was going to own the Pro Longwear concealer.  So now I do! Boom!  I may have wasted a ton of money in the process, but I got what I wanted originally.  Not only is it perfect, but it is also a great pair with the NARS radiant creamy concealer.  I apply the Pro Longwear underneath my eye and the NARS under that.  They provide a nice gradient into one another and when used with the kabuki brush, I feel like I am at least five years younger. Actually I was at a store the other day and the girl asked if I was at least 21! I laughed and then of course told her she rocked because I am 32! She said my skin was flawless and I have these make up items to thank.  You can get the Pro Longwear at the MAC counter for $23.  Oh and if the makeup artist tells you no, say YES!

What concealers do you use and love? Do share with me!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

These Boots are Made for Walking...

boots, boots, boots

First of all, my weakness in life usually involves one of three things: salt, shoes, or a great bag.  This winter season has not been any exception.  I have been wearing a pair of boots on the reg and adding different boots to my collection every time I hit the streets of the shopping mall.  What can I say? Everyone has a weakness, right? Right. Ok then. 
Introducing my newest addition the Franco Sarto Chipper Tall Wide Calf Riding Boots.  
I just got these this past weekend and only have donned them one time.  Many things drew me to the boots but my favorite parts were the band at the top and the wideness in the calf area.  My calves are not skinny lady calves so when I have some room there I like to wear a cute pair of boot socks and if the boots are too tight I cannot successfully do that.  I got them on a killer sale too, which is no longer going on (insert sad face here).  I liked that they have a buckle at the heal and they also look a tad more dressy than most of my boots. These come in a pretty cognac brown, two toned brown and black and in two toned browns.  Head to Macy's if you approve!
top: KiKi La'Rue, scarf: KiKi La'Rue, leggings: White Plum, bracelets: Stella & Dot

A couple of weeks ago, my eyes were stuck by these beauties: Sperry Top-Sider Women's Hikerfish Booties in black leopard.  
I love these beauties.  I love them more than any of my regular Sperry Top-Siders.  They are perfect because you can wear them with jeans and they just look like boat shoes.  You can wear them with skinnies and you have just amped your outfit up with some adorable leopard print!  I wore them last week to work with red skinnies and a black shirt.  I just love them.  I also picked these booties up at Macy's.

My next boot love is something that I never really pictured myself wanting or even loving, but from the world of Pinterest and some outfit compilation I found myself wanting a pair and quickly.  I am of course talking about a pair of L.L. Bean bean boots.
Now they were backordered like crazy when I went hunting for them so I turned to my trusty Ebay app and was able to find a pair that would be delivered to my door before the snow melted.  I have worn them four times already! I love them.  They look just as cute with leggings as they do with skinny jeans. Look at these cute Pinterest finds of how to wear the bean boots.
Cute right? All pins found on my My Rodeo Drive board!
I cannot even believe this next pair of boots I am going to share with you.  I have to start with my obsession with Hunter boots.  I love them.  If you are ever going to invest in a pair of wellies please make them Hunters.  But anyways, I was shopping at Easton Town Center one day with my mom and in the matter of 15 minutes two girls walked by me with Tiffany blue Hunter wellies.  I couldn't believe my eyes.  They were beautiful.  So I immediately went to the Hunter website, followed by every department store.  To no avail, it didn't look like these babes existed.  After a lot of research, I found out they were available in the UK and not in the US.  So easy shipping right? No.  However, Amazon runs a different UK site and they allow international I was able to grab a pair of short Tiffany blue Hunters! And seriously I swoooooooon!

They are perfect and beautiful right? I just happened to have a fresh coating of snow to model them off! :) They are my favorite, favorite, favorite!

Have you found any awesome boot or shoe finds this season? If so, please share with me! :) My collection can always continue to grow!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

My New Bedding...

During my Christmas Break I got to thinking that it was time for a change in my bedroom.  And that change I decided would be bedding.  If you give me enough time off, I am bound to change up something and 17 days off in a row did just that.  I didn't really have a "direction" that I wanted to go so I decided to open up Photoshop and just start playing around until I had created an inspiration board to go shopping for! My palette started with a fun-loving and colorful garland from Studio Mucci that I had previously ordered in November. This tassel garland is called Cupcake Confetti Birthday Tassle Garland and can be found here.

I decided to start with a neutral focused bedding set and bring in the pops of color from the tassel garland with throw pillows that I could "hopefully" find.  The shopping lasted for about a week before everything was purchased and I felt happy with the overall look.

So take a look and let me know what you think about my new bedding--that I LOVE! :)

Where did I find everything?? 

1 :: Studio Mucci--Cupcake Confetti Birthday Tassle Garland :: here
2 ::  LC by Lauren Conrad--Kohl's--Allie Ruffle Quilt Coordinates :: here
3 :: LC by Lauren Conrad--Kohl's--Faux Pearl Decorative Pillow :: here
4 :: Pillow Runway--Etsy--Gold Sequin Pillow :: here
5 :: TJ Maxx--Faux Fur Pillow
6 :: Xhilaration--Target--Textured Pom Pom Decorative Pillow :: here
7 :: TJ Maxx--Teal Ruffle Pillow
8 :: TJ Maxx--Cream Ruffle Euro Pillow

What do you think? You like my lil creation? I am very pleased with it to be truthful. And if I am being honest, Henry approves and he is my toughest critic!

Monday, January 20, 2014

That's My Kind Of Night...

....and I wish I could relive it over and over and over again!

There are two things that I love a lot in this world :: one being country music and two being blogging.  So you can only imagine how excited I was to merge the two together.  Last thursday night I met my blogging bestie Lindsey from Just a Small Town Girl IRL while we sat front row for the opening night of Luke Bryan's That's My Kind Of Night tour.  To say that the night was amazing is seriously an understatement. 

Let's start from the beginning! 

My #ootd was of course consisting of my favorite cowboy boots and some new pieces to my jewelry collection.  Stella and Dot just released their newest collection and I do not think it was online for 24 hours before I placed my order.  Whenever I put the boots on, I just know it is gonna be a good night. and trust me this night did not disappoint.

Jennifer and I drove up to Columbus after work on Friday and met Lindsey at the hotel we were staying in for the night.  We attempted to find some dinner but everywhere we went was packed and getting someone to wait on us was virtually impossible.  We finally gave up and went straight to the concert.  I am a member of Luke's Nut House (VIP fan club) and had to pick up our tickets at will call.  When the lady handed me the tickets, the first thing I looked at was the row's label.  I saw "A" and trust me when I say I know my alphabet.  I immediately turned to the girls and screamed.  We were going to be a hand's distance from LUKE BRYAN!

The rest of the night went by so quickly. seriously I do not know how time sped by so fast.  It was full of pictures, videos, favorite songs, dancing, and moments where I thought, "I cannot believe this is happening!" joining his fan club was the best move and $25 I have ever spent. 

Be prepared for photo overload.  I took over 200 during the concert.  Enjoy and be envious.  Ee are already planning on seeing this tour again in August. so two bloggers have turned into real life friends and it is safe to say LUKE BRYAN stalkers, lol. 

Cole Swindell and Lee Brice opened up for Luke and both were great!

as we waited for Luke!


this is my screensaver on my phone. swwwwwooooooon.

yes his entrance to the stage was on top of this 4x4 that was on fire. 

action shot.

I mean seriously, he is such a good entertainer. So fun and lively.  He owns the stage.  

Drink a Beer.

He should be been a BUCKEYE!
Luke, Cole, and Lee...what a great night. Thank you for going with me Lindsey and Jen! Until next time...shake it for me!