Capsule Wardrobe, week 1

capsule1

 jeans, booties, vest (similar), top (similar in color)

capsule2

mini-wedge (similar), jeans, top (similar in color), scarf (similar), cat

capsule3

top (similar in grey), jeans (same in black), flats, watch

capsule4

jeans, boots (similar), top (similar in grey), vest (similar), necklace 

capsule5

boots (similar), jeans, sweater (similar), necklace (similar)

Although my intention was to take photos every day (aka in real time) sometimes the weeks just don’t work like that. THUS, these were all taken in about 30 minutes on Monday.

However, the NICE thing about pre-shooting all my outfits for the week is it makes figuring out what I’m going to wear real easy.

It’s funny because I’m already feeling like I’m going to run out of creative ideas even though I’m only 5 days into it! And the goal isn’t to avoid re-wearing the same outfit necessarily, but I think I’ll have to start trying hard to get creative after a few weeks.

I’m glad that I’ve stuck with the neutral + cool color wardrobe concept. And accessorizing with jewelry and different hairstyles is going to go a long way in making an outfit feel “fresh”.

If there are any items that you see here that I either couldn’t link to because it’s sold out, or it was not online, I’d recommend checking out the website shopstyle.com. Whenever I’m looking for a very specific item (ex. “grey mini-wedge” or “cream 3/4 sleeve sweater”) I always go to that site first!

Are you doing your own capsule wardrobe? I’d love to see photos of your outfits! Tag them with #capsulewardrobe14 in instagram and twitter!

Homemade Creamy Chicken Soup

chickensoup

Fall and soups go together like mittens and scarves.

Mani’s and Pedi’s.

Cat hair and dark wash denim.

And other than my usual rotation of Chicken Tortilla Soup, Potato soup, and Chili (not really soup but I throw it in that category anyway), I had yet to find a homemade chicken soup that I loved.

So, I did what every normal person does and scoured Pinterest. As it turns out, there are a lot of recipes for chicken soup out in the world. So I took a few notes from various recipes, made my own tweaks and changes, and I managed to make a pretty darn delicious creamy chicken soup.

The recipe I stuck closest to was this one from The Cookie Rookie, but I made a few changes like I mentioned above.

Creamy Chicken Soup

(inspired by this recipe)

Roux ingredients: 4 T flour, 2 T buter, 2 T olive oil (made separately then added to soup)

Soup ingredients:

2 T butter

2 T olive oil

3 stalks celery (chopped)

3 carrots (chopped)

1 small yellow onion (diced)

4 C chicken stock

2 cups 1% milk

1 1/2 cups half & half

2 T chicken base granules (I like better than bouillon)

1 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp pepper

1 T parsley flakes

3 bay leaves

2 t Herbs of Provence

1/4 t turmeric

1/4 t garlic

3 cups cooked, shredded chicken (rotisserie or chicken breast)

1 package original Rice Pilaf (I like this one)

Directions:

1. Make the Roux first in a separate pan. Melt olive oil and butter in a saucepan. Sprinkle flour over top and whisk together until smooth and bubbly. It should only take a few minutes. Set aside.

1.5 Make the Rice Pilaf in a separate pot. Set aside. You’ll add the rice in at the end.

2. In a dutch oven, or large soup pot, heat olive oil and butter over medium heat.

3. Add vegetables and sauté until softened.

4. Add the rest of the ingredients (not rice), including the roux, and bring to a boil. Make sure to stir every few minutes to keep the milk from scalding.

5. Once boiling, turn down to low and simmer for 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

6. Taste test and add more salt or seasonings. Remember flavors develop over time, so don’t over do it!

7. Once you’ve adjusted any seasonings, stir in cooked rice pilaf. I added about 3/4 of the rice so the soup didn’t become too heavy. Add less or more depending on your preference.

8. Serve and enjoy!

chickensoup2

Dainty Jewelry + a giveaway

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Lately my jewelry of choice has been delicate and subtle. I’m finding rings and earrings to be the easiest jewelry to wear around a baby, but I’ve found that even smaller necklaces don’t catch David’s eye like statement ones do.

So I can usually get away with wearing those quite a bit as well!

Saressa Designs has been a long time favorite of mine for delicate and feminine jewelry. I recently added some soft pink earrings and a simple arrow necklace into the mix, and I can’t seem to stop wearing them.

earrings1

earrings3

Saressa Designs is kindly giving away a $100 gift card to a lucky reader! I’m telling you, it’s going to be hard to choose what you want in her store! These are next on my list!

You can use the discount code “SmallThings” to receive 25% off your order through November 7th too!

Enter by using the giveaway tool below! Open internationally!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Look Alive “Five”

five

one, two, three, four, five

Tired? Me too. 

I was thinking about the makeup products I use on days where I plan on throwing my hair up into a ponytail and just keeping it simple on my face.

And they all help a great deal in the “look less dead” department.

A shower is really key for me to feel truly awake in the morning, so if I skip that on casual days, I always make sure to soak my face in water to try to help wake everything up.

It’s as if my skin doesn’t want to wake up for the day.

Honestly I should exfoliate on days where I skip morning showers because that could go a long way in reviving me, but that never occurred to me until just now.

Anyway, above are the 5 essential products I use to look alive on days where I may not quite feel it.

 1. Cargo Blush in shade “Los Cabos”. When I was in NYC a few weeks ago, one of the gals from Birchbox freshened up her makeup just prior to the event and she was wearing a blush shade so beautiful that I practically stampeded some guests to go ask her what it was. She directed me over to this Cargo blush and I proceeded to remove it and take it right up to the counter. I know, I know, I sing a lot of praises for blushes, but my goodness this may have possibly replaced my all-time favorite Tarte Amazonian Clay blushes.

::crickets::

It’s just so stinkin’ pretty and has the perfect amount of pigment and slight/barely/almost undetectable shimmer. It’s like a waaaaaay better version than the cult favorite blush from Nars that I cannot understand the hype around.

2. My fellow pale friend Kacia and I were discussing “eyes closed” lipstick while I was in Pittsburgh recently. A lot of my (and her) lipsticks require a mirror to make sure we aren’t applying them messily or leaving too much color in the cupid’s bow. This bb lip balm by Bite is the perfect “eyes closed” lip product. It’s a nice, sheer color that you can apply in the dark, or without looking, and it’s not heavy enough to look like a real mess.

3. There is no lash curler like the Shu Uemura lash curler. No more needs to be said. If you love curly lashes and you’ve never tried it, I assure you that you won’t look back once you buy this tool.

4. I scolded many of you a few weeks ago for keeping me in the dark so long about this amazing under eye concealer, but if you need help looking alive, Bye Bye Undereye will cover everything. EVERYTHING I TELL YOU.

5. I can’t get enough of these cream shadows by Benefit. I just added “no pressure” to my tiny collection, and the shade pictured above is “birthday suit” and I’ll be picking up that one next. A little shimmer in the eyeshadow can go a long way in reflecting a bit of light, and waking up your face. Don’t be afraid to add some powder (aka not cream) shadow to the corners if you need a bit more depth.

Again, this is keeping it simple, but it’s worth it to find the small but great products to deliver major impact.

It is the small things after all, isn’t it?

Did I just officially do that for the first time on my blog?

Cute.

Capsule Wardrobe Fall & Winter 2014

I think I’ve pretty much completed my capsule wardrobe. I even incorporated some color because I’m sneaky like that.

The goal here is to take “thinking about what to wear” out of the equation. Getting dressed has never been a really challenging thing for me (I like clothes), but I’m all about keeping things simple these days. I also want the challenge of thinking creatively about my outfit based on what I have, instead of shopping to try to “fill” the creativity hole that can happen when I wear the same thing over and over.

I tried to buy strategic pieces that will grow with me as my belly grows, but I may need to adjust based on how large I’m getting.

What is included: tops, some outerwear that really completes an outfit (not just regular coats), shoes, and pants/denim.

What is not included: loungewear, athletic wear, jewelry, tights, scarves & other accessories, and bags.

topsupdated from top left: one (similar), two, three (I did not order maternity), four (can’t find online), five (via Marshalls), six (a pea in the pod, cannot find online) seven, eight (similar), nine, ten, eleven, twelve (cannot find online, similar), thirteen, fourteen, fifteen

dresse

 one, two

shoes

from top left: one (no longer available), two, three (similar), four, five, six

PANTS

from top left: one, two (similar), three (similar in black), four, five

(I’ll try my best to update with “similar” items for any items I have that aren’t linked. I was surprised by how much I couldn’t find online, or it was purchased on sale so it’s no longer available!)

In total I have 27 items here, and Caroline suggests including 37 items. So, if I need to add some larger tops to the mix as my pregnancy progresses, I’ll be sure to update them in this post!

My goal is to share my outfits of the week every friday here on the blog. Perhaps you’ll find a bit of inspiration in working with what you have based on my experience with it. To be completely honest, I’m a little concerned that I’m going to get bored in about a month, but we’ll see what happens!

You can read any other posts I’ve written about the capsule wardrobe here!