Thursday, January 31, 2013

Have a Cozy Weekend!

vintage vogue

Steve and I are heading Florida for a long weekend to celebrate the wedding of two dear friends ... just in time too, as Chicago's temps take a frosty plunge. I'm looking forward to relaxing on the beach and sipping some tropical cocktails (computer free, so I'll be signing off until Tuesday).   

While I'm away, here's some ways to keep warm in Chicago ...
• snag a seat in front of the fireplace at RL and warm up with a Hot Toddy and their delicious burger!

• most of the C by Bloomingdale's line is on sale – I adore this cozy cashmere dress, over a chambray shirt for work, or paired with black tights and a leather jacket on the weekend.

• don't forget to make your reservations for Chicago Restaurant Week, it starts tomorrow!

• stay warm in the comfort of your own home and make a batch of yummy french onion soup 

and finally, today is the last day to shop the CakeStyle sample sale! Score designer duds at a deep discount (it maybe not keep you warm, but you'll sure look hot!) Don't forget to use code "beth30" for 30% off your order of $50 or more.

Have a great weekend!

Photo by Roger Prigent for Vogue 1954

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

A Midweek Pick-Me-Up (hint, it's a sale!)

Juice Cleanse

One of the things I love most about my job is being surrounded by beautiful clothing. But what's better than beautiful clothes? Beautiful clothes on sale!

CakeStyle is having a warehouse sale, offering fab deals on everything from scarves to shoes, and everything in between. I love this dress paired with some nude sandals and gold jewels for a spring wedding, or these shorts with a flowy blouse when summer comes.

Eeeven better ... spend $50 or more and receive 30% off with code beth30

Check out the sale now and happy savings!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Everyday Sequins

Chicago Stylist

Personal Style

Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
tank from American Apparel

• black pants and sequin jacket from Zara
• necklaces from Stitch 
• bangles from Forever21, IGWT
platform booties from DSW 

What better way to brighten up a mid-winter look than with some sparkle! Sequins shouldn't be reserved for fancy affairs, add a jacket to a simple jeans and t-shirt, like I'm doing here, or don a shimmering skirt with some tights and a cozy sweater.

Try introducing some sparkle with this glittering gray sweater, or this mini skirt ... or go for a showstopping look with this dress, paired with tights, booties and a leather jacket.

Monday, January 28, 2013

The Joy of Juice

Juice Cleanse

Steve and I recently watched the documentary "Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead" – the remarkable story of Joe, who overcame obesity and disease by drinking nothin' but green juice for 60 days!

Ever since – or maybe I'm just more aware of it now – it seems every other person is trying a juice cleanse. Seeing as Steve and I aren't the healthiest eaters, and definitely need to introduce more fruits and veggies into our diets, we decided to try it. We bought a juicer and did a little detox for a few days. We weren't in it for weight loss or anything, just to reboot our systems ... and I must say I felt wonderful! Plus the added bonus of glowing skin and a lighter feeling (no pizza and booze weighing us down).

It's was a nice little break from our typical diet of french cheese, or spicy sloppy Joes, (or my fave meal of Snickers and Reese's), but just a few days did the trick – no serious commitment here.

Juicing your own is pretty fun (especially playing around with yummy recipes!), but there are a number of great looking offers for 3, 5, and 8 days of juice shipped straight to your door, like those from Suja, Cooler Cleanse, and Blueprint. Also, I'd love to try some of these delicious looking recipes next time.  

Have you tried a juice detox? Turns out it's not as scary as it sounds!

Photo from Pinterest

Friday, January 25, 2013

Weekend Homework: Load up on Lace

Couture Lace

On the couture runways this week, big wigs like Chanel, Valentino, and Elie Saab showed pieces constructed of dreamy delicate lace. This feminine fabric adds intricate detail to simple silhouettes or additional complexity to sophisticated designs. 

Lace adds elegance to every occasion, so let's daydream about spring this weekend and let these woven works of art above inspire some more attainable ensembles below ...


Lovely Lacy Pieces ...
1. gray lace sweater - $19.99
2. ladylike lace dress - $27.80
3. lace shift dress - $118
4. lace bolero - $60
5. silk and lace blouse - $79.90
6. lace shorts - $120
7. lace dress - $39.99
8. lace mini skirt - $22.80
9. lace combo dress - $69.90

Have a fantastic weekend!

photos at top from Elie Saab, Chanel, Alexis Mabille, Valentino

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Structured and Sleek

Chicago Stylist

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Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
• dress and jacket from Forever21

• boots by Ellen Tracy
• necklaces from Stitch

It's just so easy to grab black from my closet – it's simple, always in style, and goes with everything. No matter what I'm wearing, be it a flowy printed dress or a jeans and t-shirt, the black jacket is the easiest, sleek structured piece to top off an outfit. Even better, this knit and faux leather piece was a steal at Forever21.

Other cheap and chic finds are this zipper, pointed hem jacket and this faux leather trimmed moto jacket.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Le Fragrance Français

If there's one thing I cannot get enough of (you know, besides shoes, sweets, shopping ...) it's anything lavender. I love the lotions, the candles, and the plant itself. I've already shared by love for this candle and this perfect lavender-scented hand sanitizer, so below are a few more fantastically French lavender finds (at a slightly friendlier price point than Diptyque). 

French Lavender

Clockwise from top:
L'Occitane lavender hand cream, $22 
lavender syrup (perfect for making this cocktail), $14
dried lavender wreath (to make your home smell like Provence), $20
lavender detangling spray (to make your tresses smooth and subtly scented), $10
lavender essential oil, $6
Williams Sonoma French lavender candle, $19.95

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Emerald City

Chicago Stylist

Personal Style

Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
• sweater from Urban Outfitters

• star-print jeans from Gap
• pumps from Aldo
• vintage silver necklace and bangle

I love small accents of color, but sometimes these dreary winter days call for more pop. One of my favorite colors this season is bold emerald green, and I must say, this sweater definitely brightens my day. I paired it with these silver star jeans from Gap for a little extra sparkle.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Pumped Up Kicks

I love a shiny new pair of pumps as much as the next girl, but lately I've been admiring these snazzy sneakers popping up everywhere. A much more casual and comfortable option, but still adds the height of a pump with the wedge heel. I love the added metallic and stud details on some sneakers, who says gym shoes can't be stylish?
Below are some cool kicks. Pair them with your favorite skinny black pants or a ladylike skirt and tights combo for a comfortable but chic look ...

Friday, January 18, 2013

Have a Sweet Weekend!

Lavender cake

I'm looking forward to a relaxing weekend, catching up on sleep, with friends, and my KitchenAid. Steve and I are terrible at making the time for home cooked meals, but I love the therapeutic act of baking on the weekends. I cannot wait to try this recipe for lavender "cheesecake" (anything in this floral flavor is fantastic in my book, but this decadent dish sounds extra amazing (plus It's made from all raw ingredients!)

Also ...
It's supposed to be a cold one here in Chicago so dress warmly - preferably in a cozy cashmere piece like this lovely winter white number from Theory (on sale!)

I don't know about you, but my skin has been taking a beating with this dry winter weather. This mask packs a moisturizing punch! Plus the black tea scent is heavenly and it goes on like silk (it's expensive, so ask a Sephora employee for a sample – it lasts two applications!).

I rediscovered the joy of brunch last weekend (after snagging the perfect fireside seat at RL). Next up, I'd love to try the newly opened Little Goat (sister restaurant to Girl & the Goat, located just across the street). Breakfast is served all day and I definitely want to see what "smoked fries" are all about!

Have a fantastic weekend!

Photo from Roost Blog

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Effortless Ensemble

Chicago Stylist

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Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
• tshirt from Gap

• tunic tank from Martin + Osa
• pants and shoes from Forever21
• gifted gold disc earrings 
• green bangle from C.Wonder

Sometimes the most clean, classic silhouettes make for the most comfortable outfits. I'm clearly a big fan of skinny black pants – I mean, they go with literally everything, and are the next best thing to my weekend black leggings. I like to balance out these fitted bottoms with more voluminous tops, like this a-line tunic. A totally lounge-worthy ensemble, but add some accessories and throw on some heels and and a blazer and I'm ready for work.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Ruby Slippers

Red Shoes

Nothing brightens a dreary winter day like a bright pop of color ... and what better color that classic red? Bright red pumps elevate any ensemble from simple to sexy and sophisticated. From patent to suede, embellished to cut out, this sultry hue puts a spring in your step – even in the dead of winter. 

Below are some fantastic fire-red finds ...

Red Shoes

Clockwise from top:
mesh scallop heel, $150 – available on
patent stiletto, $625 – available at Christian Louboutin
suede cutout pump, $245 – available on Piperlime
spiked pump, $175 – available on Piperlime
studded heel pumps, $50 – available at Zara

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Briliant Border

Chicago Stylist

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Personal Style

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The goods:
• chambray shirt from Banana Republic

• black sleeveless top from Club Monaco
• chain-trim cardigan, belt, and jeans from Forever21
• pumps from Zara

I'm all for piling on the necklaces and lining my arms in bangles, but not all accessories come in the form of bracelets and baubles. This sweater comes complete with a gold chain trim, and paired with a gold buckle belt, are all the accessories I need for a clean and classic look. Bonus points for being a warm layering piece without creating a bulky, winter silhouette.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Diptyque Paris


I'm such a sucker for all things fragrant – perfume, lotions, and definitely candles. Always on the hunt for the best scents, I was thrilled when I heard Diptyque was opening an outpost right here in Chicago.

Since the first shop opened in 1961 at 34 blvd Saint Germain in Paris (as every label will tell you), Diptyque has cornered the home fragrance industry with their range of incredible scents, each more intoxicating than the next.

I finally popped in there over the weekend and spent my sweet time smelling everything from the spicy Cannelle (one of the original three scents) to the ever-popular Bias. The shop is like a gallery, perfectly laid out to lead you around the space, and the very knowledgeable shop girl will gladly help you find your perfect candle. Be sure to check out the gorgeous chandelier made up of the iconic glass containers.

I left with the most heavenly lavender candle I've ever smelled. These gems aren't necessarily a bargain at $60, but spend the time getting to know the scents and save up for your fave.


Friday, January 11, 2013

Have a Warm Weekend!

Hot Toddy

Until spring, we Chicagoans have to find pleasure in the small things - like a weekend with no plans. Saturday's weather is supposed to be pleasant so I hope to get out, maybe swing by the new Diptyque shop that opened in Wicker Park (I'd love to fill my home with this scent).

Below are a few more fun things to pick up this weekend ...

• Today is national hot toddy day! Mix up a warm recipe (like this one) and enjoy a night in!
• Add some shine to these dreary winter days with a sparkly piece.
• Practice for spring with a pretty sherbet hue.
• Be sure to make some reservations for Chicago Restaurant Week coming up next month! With prix fixe dinners priced at around $40/person, tables go fast at the hottest (and otherwise too pricey) spots during this week-long food feast.

Photo from Pinterest

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Pile on the Pieces

Chicago Stylist

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Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
• shirt from Gap

• cardigan from Banana Republic
• pencil skirt and booties from Zara
• vintage gold belt, earrings, and Omega watch

Besides big cozy sweaters, one of the few fun elements of winter style is layering. I love sifting through my wardrobe, mixing and matching pieces. I pulled together these business classics, but kept it casual, leaving the shirt untucked and adding some gold accessories for polish. I particularly love graphic black and white patterns for this because you can pair it with any color (note to self: add bright hue skirt to continuous mental shopping list).

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Tress Mess

I will take all the time I need in the morning enjoying my shower, playing with makeup, or sifting through my closet, but I don't like spending too much time doing my hair. I've pared my washing down to once per week, which means I have to get creative between shampoos. Below are a few fave do's, and a couple I'd love to try, all easy fixes for a not-so-fresh mane ...

how to hair

clockwise from top:
messy side braid - this is one of my faves - make a deep side part, bring all hair to one side and loosely braid, letting pieces fall out.

side braid pulled back - starting with that side part again, braid a small section, pulling in pieces of hair as you make your way back. Tie back in a loose bun.

messy top knot - pull hair straight above head and start twisting, stopping when it reaches your crown. Wrap the twist around itself to create a loose bun and secure with bobbi pins or elastic. Let pieces fall out or pull some loose for this French-inspired do.

loose ponytail - as simple as it sounds, start with a center part, tease the crown slightly for some volume, and tie back with a pretty piece like the golden one in the photo.

tucked tresses - much easier than it looks, start by putting a thin elastic headband around your head. Starting in front, take sections of hair and start tucking them into the headband until the entire piece is wrapped around it. Continue all the way back on each side, tucking sections until you can't tuck any more! (bonus: sleep with this do and you'll have big, beachy waves the next day)

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Black & Tan

Chicago Stylist

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Personal Style

Personal Style

The goods:
• sweater borrowed from my husband

• tuxedo stripe pants from J.Crew
• pumps from Zara
• earrings from H&M
• vintage turquoise ring

While I believe you should always look polished and put together, I'll be the first to admit that it can be hard to think stylish when all you want is to dress as warm as possible. These cold winter days have me reaching for the coziest sweater I can find ... which just happens to be hanging on Steve's side of the closet. I've paired this roomier piece with these clean tailored pant to create a neutral canvas for these rhinestone and turquoise sparklers from H&M. Maybe cozy can be clean and chic!

Monday, January 7, 2013

How to Tie a Scarf

I'm a sucker for beautiful scarves, both old and new, but it can be tricky figuring out just how to tie them in fun and different ways. In the spirit of my 2013 resolution to love what I've already got, I hope to find ways to incorporate all of those vintage treasures and flea market finds into my ensembles. Well, my fellow CakeStylists and I put together a little video tutorial, showing you stylish ways to tie 4 different types.

So snag those stylish silks next time you see them ... like this vintage multicolored scarf, or this lovely emerald find!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Resolution #3: Enjoy What I Have

Lovely Life

We all have those things we reserve for special occasions – fancy champagne glasses, those vintage lace gloves, that pricey pair of sparkly heels tucked in the back of your closet for ... for what? My third resolution for this year is to quit waiting to use/wear/love the little things that make me happy. Why not drink a Sunday morning mimosa from these classy coupes? Or don this glittered pair with some skinny jeans and a cozy sweater? Even if no sees you, it's enough to put a smile on your face.

All of the resolutions I've made this week are about one thing: living a lovely life to it's fullest. I plan to swipe on some ruby red lipstick and eat a fine french cheese while kicking up my nicest heels ... because life's too short not to!

Have a great weekend and here's to a fantastic and chic new year!

Photo from

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Resolution #2: Enjoy the Best in Beauty

Best Beauty

Next up on my resolutions of 2013 ... enjoy the best the beauty department has to offer. I'm not saying I'm tossing my entire collection and starting fresh with the priciest products at Neimans, but instead of just admiring that perfect shade of creamy pink lipstick, or wondering just how miraculous that Creme De La Mer really is, I'm gonna try it. Of course, before you drop the big bucks on anything, test it out or ask for a sample. Every once in a while money can buy happiness ... and sometimes that happiness comes in pretty little cosmetic packages.

Photo from Pinterest

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Resolution #1: Enjoy the Finer Foods

Fine Foods

Sure I could resolve to only eat healthy in 2013, but I don't see myself giving up any of my guilty pleasures (um, ever). Instead I choose not deprive myself of what I really want, but resolve to eat only what I truly love. Instead of reaching for some cubes of cheddar, enjoy the unrivaled creamy taste of La Tur, or skip those dime-a-dozen chocolates and dive into a decadent bar of Cacao Prieto

And yes quality gourmet costs a little more, but make it a special event, maybe a monthly splurge. It's worth it ... and delicious! 

Photo from Little Brown Pen

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Cheers to 2013!

Cheers to 2013

I love the first day of the year ... a fresh start to 365 days of possibility and opportunity. 2012 was fantastic – Steve and I tied the knot and I started a new job – who knows what kind of fun 2013 holds?! And while we will inevitably claim to eat healthier and work out more, today is about relaxing and recovering. To make that easier, below are a couple of my favorite "cure-all cocktails"

The Nellcôte Bellini
A fantastically French twist on the classic champagne cocktail, Nellcôte on Randolph makes theirs with the following: prosecco, St. Germain, splash of pomegranate vodka, and lavender syrup

McClure's Bloody Mary
McClure's mix is the perfect blend of savory and spice, all you need to add is your favorite vodka and any additions you like in your Bloody (I like a meal - salami, pickle, cheese ... the works!)

Happy New Year!