As another holiday weekend quickly approaches, many of us are splitting town, heading to our favorite lake or beach resort.
If you could just get over that agonizing chore of packing (Cue the sighs). I must admit that I love to pack, so I am going to help you out. Efficiency and flexibility, that is the key. My husband is even amazed on my packing skills, he always takes more bags than me!
I truly believe that you should start with your feet. For a couple of reasons. Generally there is a lot of walking and shoes take up a lot of room. So sometimes starting with your favorites makes the most sense. Everything should be comfortable (no explanation needed).
Keep it neutral. The pops of color should come from small packable items such as accessories or even a swimsuit. Pack items that are multi purpose, available to be used in different ways. Here are my staples for the lake or the ocean:
1. bathing suit or two (print and colorful)
2. accessories that highlight a healthy glow (bright or gold)
3. denim cutoffs and jeans (always a staple)
4. knit sundress (can double as a coverup if needed)
5. logo or printed tees (cotton is best)
6. beach hat and head scarf (in case you're too lazy to wash your hair, or to protect it from the sun)
7. a couple of boho tops (companion to denim of course)
8. TWO pair of sunnies (nothing is worse than losing the only pair you brought)
9. Lightweight sweatshirt (sunburn makes you chilly)
10. Beach tote that you can fold up in your suitcase (for towels, water bottles, etc etc)
And of course,,,,,don't forget the sunscreen!
Have the best holiday weekend with family and friends!
Are we raising a generation of copycats and non-thinkers? Young adults that don't have an opinion about self expression, let alone their own views about world issues. Has the media become their catalog for appearance, self-worth, and knowledge?
Ya ya, I have a boutique and you're thinking, what does this have to do with clothes, fashion, and what you do. Actually, it started because I WAS looking at clothes and appearances of teenage girls. I have also been watching my nieces work through their pre-teen and soon to be teen years. As a mother to a boy, this difference has been very interesting to watch. I have also been shown various prom pictures (yes it is the season), and continued to notice patterns.
When I was a teenager, like decades ago, it was super cool to be different. It was the 80's and the 90's, the beginning of MTV, super models viewed only in magazines, and a grunge/artistic movement that made it "cool" to be knowledgeable about "stuff." In 1984, I promise you that I was the only one at prom in a black gown with past-the-elbows gloves. In 1986, I am quite sure I was the only one in my Fashion Merchandising Department that had blue hair.
Today, you can't find ANY girl in junior high and beyond, that doesn't have straight, long hair. Most likely in a "pony" maybe with a hair band. And all the girls at the ends of the prom pictures know their role, with the hand placement on their hips. Like EVERY single picture. I really think we need to coach these young women to be themselves, not what they think they need to be, both in they way they look and the way they think. Trends are trends, but mimicking is not cool. Be your own person, develop your own style, and realize your best accessory is your brain.
What do you think?
Memorial Day has always been considered the official kick off to summer, even though your yearly calendar says differently. And lately, the weather has been lying to us. But do not despair, if you have lived in the Midwest long enough, you know you have your 3 beautiful days in May, and then the humidity settles in. You might as well get ready, and your closet should be ready too!
Which brings me to the topic of this journal, Summer Essentials. If you haven't gone through your closet yet, you should probably make that a priority. And if you don't have these items IN your closet, then that is your next priority!
1. Day dress - If you haven't noticed, shorts are taking a back seat to dresses these days. They are cooler and it's nice not to worry about what cute top to wear. Bright colors are best to show off a summer tan, and the more whimsical the print, the better!
2. Birkenstock sandals - Fashion is such a cyclical beast! Did you think that you would be wearing these again, or your daughters would be raiding your closet for your pair from college?!? The more unique the better. It's not like wearing your habana Arizona this time around...Color color color!
3. White denim - It is true that whitish denim is becoming seasonless, but in summer no questions are asked :) If you need a little update, choose a style that has a frayed hem or is slightly distressed overall.
4. Off the shoulder tops - There is no part of the body that is getting attention like shoulders these days! Cold shoulder tops continue, but the latest attraction is the off the shoulder look. Slightly boho, sometimes dressy, the common denominator with this look is a good exfoliator and a self tanner :)
5. Slides - Open toe or closed toe is an option, having a back is not. I love it when a trend is easy. I also love it when a trend gives allows me the freedom to NOT have perfect toes! Let's face it, life gets busy.
6. Espadrilles - Nothing spells summer more than a pair of espadrilles. Low heel or high, ankle wrap or pump, the constant is the jute wrapped bottom. Perfect with everything summer from dresses to cutoff shorts, chicly European. Every time I slip on a pair, visions of blue waters and tapas dance in my head.
Today I realized how close knit our boutique has become. When someone in this family feels pain, we all feel pain. When you shed tears, we shed tears. We have worked together six years, and select talented women carefully. Many of you that have shopped with us from close to the beginning, are entwined in this sisterhood. We know about your families, and you appreciate ours. You all are an extended family. Today I am sad. And dear Ann, I am sorry for your loss. #sisterhood
Blogs. Such a bizarre thing to me. Everyone is a blogger. Everyone is an influencer. I started "blogging" because I was told it was good for business. It was painful and forced, and frankly I thought stupid, because everyone out there had pretty much the same thing to say. Needless to say, I stopped.
Two months ago we hired someone new,,,,younger, and she told me that my blogs were good and that I should start doing them again. Ugh. Really Sara? Of course I have sat on my hands for two weeks now, but I guess today is the day. (It might be my brunch mimosas talking, but I'll run with that)
First of all, I refuse to call these blogs from here on out. I will reference them as journals. They will not always be about fashion or beauty, possibly just life. I will try to have their focus be something that makes you feel better, inner strength, living life more beautifully. I will probably share some very personal photographs that might not be the best business choice, but that is not what this exercise is about. I want my journals to be personal. You can choose to read them or not.
It seems to me that Mother's Day is a good place to start. We are a women's business, our audience is mostly women, many of us are mothers, we all have or had a mother, and to me, there is no greater love than a mother's.
Yesterday I had the pleasure of traveling to Waterloo, Iowa to spend the day with my grandmother, mother, aunts, nieces, and one sister. You see some goofy pictures, but it is so much more than that. (And yes, I forced my giant son to go, so you see that too!) These women have raised children, experienced tragedy, continue to live life gracefully, and are beautiful themselves. The ages range from 9 to 94. They have lived through wars, the Great Depression, the loss of a spouse and father, cancer, divorce, etc etc. In the photos the great grandchildren or grandchildren to some, are pampering with manicures and back rubs. These children are definitely being raised properly; they realize this is clearly a mom's weekend!
I believe what gets women through the obstacles in life, is laughter and sisterly love. (hopefully also illustrated in these photos) If you don't have a network now, get one. Trust me, you'll need it. Take care of one another. That is inner beauty. So enjoy this beautiful Sunday, and hold a sister tight.
In case you guys are feeling the holiday burn, we're always here to help. Did you know that you can ask us any question about our product on the web, via the "message us" pop up in the lower right hand corner?!?!? Size, color, fit, you name it. Did you also know that we will gift wrap and ship for free?!?! (just send us a note about the gift wrap) The last day for on time shipping is December 15th....so let's get busy!
The Ruby Slipper prides itself on being environmentally conscious. This Earth Day we have teamed up with BlueJeansGoGreen to turn recycled denim into housing insulation for those in need.
Founded in 2006, BlueJeansGoGreen began when New Orleans was devastated by Hurricane Katrina. Through their partnership with UltraTouch denim insulation, BlueJeansGoGreen provided insulation to multiple Habitat for Humanity projects in New Orleans, Baton Rouge, and Mississippi. The UltraTouch insulation is composed of 85% of recycled cotton fibers. It is environmentally safe. It also resists mold and mildew, and has 30% better sound absorption.
Over 25 Billion pounds of textile ends up in the landfill every year. By recycling worn denim into UltraTouch insulation, BlueJeansGoGreen, helps keeps textile waste out of the landfills. To date, BlueJeansGoGreen has collected over one million pieces of denim. Recycling denim is the end-use example of how the cotton industry continues to make environmental gains across all life cycle phases.
Do your part this Earth Day and instead of throwing your old blue’s out…recycle your denim with us and save money on new jeans! As a Thank You from us to you, for every pair of jeans contributed we will give you $25 OFF a new pair of jeans!
The world of denim is a bit mind boggling this season; but lucky for you, we're here to help. In no particular order:
* White denim is a neutral and can be worn ANY time of year
* Get a pair of distressed jeans
* Raw hems are cool
* A 10" rise is NOT a mom's jean
* The hippest new jean is the cropped flare
* Denim and denim can be worn together
* Skinnys are a basic
* Flares are the new bootcut
* Distressed denim is not just a "young" trend
* Lighten up
* Denim is important in skirts and dresses
* Denim's muse right now are the 70's and early 80's
So I thought I was going to sit down and write something about last years denim versus the new denim trends this spring (I guess I'll get to that later), but got completely diverted. As I was surfing the web, getting inspiration and channeling the blues, I came across a VOGUE photograph of Pharrell and some random model in the same denim jacket.
Of course I had to stop and read closer. So apparently Pharrell is the new co-owner of the Dutch brand G-Star. Which, blah blah blah. But what was more appealing about this schtick was Pharrell's style and design credentials talked about in this article.
Now, you won't admit it (but I will)....I love Pharrell on The Voice. Always constructive feedback, a NICE guy to the contestants, and just COOL laid back fashion. And I am talking about a DUDE. Far cooler than Adam, frankly. (poser)
Pharrell knows how to rock some denim. Which by the way, can be both top and bottom as long as they are not the identical color. He will wear vintage. He is not a slave to any one brand. And I think the biggest, biggest cool thing about Pharrell and his denim wearin', rock swagger, is that THE MAN KNOWS HOW TO ACCESSORIZE. Yes, still talking about a man. Which for even a woman, is hard to get a handle on. Hats, belts, watches, leather cuffs, rings, necklaces. He will never end up looking like an 80's hair band member, he knows the right amount. He knows how to dress up a t-shirt, rock a loafer, when to cuff, overall innate ability. He reminds me of a black Marlon Brando :)
And for all of these reasons, he is my most recent, fashion celebrity crush!
Why is it when people ask Midwesterners which season they love the most, 80 percent of the time they respond, fall. I think the reason goes beyond the cozy sweaters hiding those 5 extra pounds, and college football (go Hawks). I believe it has more to do with the feeling that fall brings with it.
Let's face it, the rest of our five senses lose out to our nose from about October to January 1st. The changing seasons, harvests, chilling air, a fresh wreath, and the fact of 3 major holidays within 60 days kind of commands the attention of that thing sticking out from our face. Sixty days of our nose reliving memories and making new ones simply from its uncanny ability of the "association game." Thanksgiving pie that your mom made, cider mulling on the stove at your bff's house, or your family ritual of cutting down your own tree. And of course there are those forced scents and memories that come in the form of candles.
Cue the candles.
Yep. When you think about the reason for today's candles, I believe it is to choose one that is personal to you, that evokes the feeling that makes you happy through the memories associated with scent. Too deep for candles, maybe. But there is reason that one person falls in love with "tobacco road" and another finds it repulsive. Candles that are personal to you. Candles that you light, and their scent simply and purely make you happy.
Cue the Homestead Candles.
There are candles and then there are candles. Some are mass produced and some are still hand poured. Hand poured. In a small town in Mississippi. And we found them. They are made with care and love, and from people who have their own memories acciated with this growing company. They are sold in the likes of Anthropology and Crate and Barrel. We will proudly be offering 7 scents in two beautiful vessels. Scents that will evoke happiness and memories, and maybe help create new ones :)
And what a perfect season to find them.