Brand Highlight: Joules (USA)

The well known British brand Joules is a favorite for families living life to the absolute fullest…in style!  They recently opened up their online shop to the United States…so what better time to get acquainted:)  When I popped over to the site, I was immediately smitten with the vibrant colors, whimsical prints and attention to small details in design.  It all just seemed so effortless, which is TOTALLY my style.  I also love that you can find something for everyone on their site…making it the perfect lifestyle brand.  In true TSF fashion, whenever I discover something I love…I am always sure to share my favorites with you:)  Here are the things at the tippity top of my list.  Happy Shopping!

* also have a great outlet section…not to be missed:)

Q_WELLYPRINT_BRNFLOR_A
So much rain these days..why not brave the puddles in style?  These brown floral wellies are available here $72.  Shop more lovely rain boots.

 

Q_HARBOUR_NWMELST_A
Classic and easy to wear, this striped tee in Melon will be a regular wear for me…I got it for MYSELF and can’t wait to style it!   Available here $42

 

Q_BABYAYDEN_BLUSTRP_A
For my Preston, these overalls are seriously adorable, no? Throw on with bright colored tees for Spring and you are ready to go! Available here $55

 

Q_JNRJARELL_YELLOW_A
Rain on the brain. Connor desperately needs a new raincoat for Spring. This child has had one serious growth spurt. Love this option in both colors. Available here for $89

 

Q_BABYCHERISH_BDRPRT_A
For my godbaby Sky, this would be darling! I love the whimsical summer print. Available here $49

 

Q_AILSA_INDSTRP_A
Love the built in necklace. I would pair this with white skinny jeans OR if I was feeling brave..wear it on its own with wedges! So freaking cute! Available here $120

 This is a sponsored post.   I only partner with brands I truly love and all opinions are 100 percent mine.

Monday Mingle: Moto Jacket Trend

Monday-MingleNEW

#MondayMingle time:)  The stylish collaboration between myself, Kristin of BonBon Rose Girls and Nicole of Momtrends.  The link is being hosted by Nicole this week.  I hope you will head over and link up your stylish posts!

I am highlighting a favorite trend for Spring….THE MOTO JACKET!  How great is this Blu Pepper one compliments of PB&J Boutique?  I love the color for Spring and the possibilities are limitless.  Off the top of my head…paired over sweet spring dresses (like below), with skinny jeans and a solid tee for an uber casual vibe and how about over an all black look with leopard accents?  Yes, yes, yes!  I work regularly with the brand Blu Pepper for The Box Service and you will love the touch and feel of this faux leather jacket.  A few other favorites from the boutique…here, here and here!

Hope you find some outfit inspiration….hoping my spring inspired look brings spring inspired weather…a girl can dream:)

123 (1024x776)
Dress Free People via Third Street Habit Boutique (old), Moto Jacket c/o PB&J Boutique available here, Boots FRYE (old) but similar here

125 (1024x679)

133 (1024x679)

134 (1024x777) (883x684)
This dress has tassle details built into the design…how perfectly on trend? I skipped jewelry and let the dress do the talking.

144 (1024x818)

Quick Change

I meant to post this yesterday but oh my gosh..I was SO under the weather.  The boys both had croup this past weekend so hello breathing treatments and sleepless nights.  Mid week we were on the road to recovery and guess what?  Mommy got sick:(  That doesn’t happen often but when it does #brutal.  I am feeling a little better today…and hope to be back in action for the weekend.  We shall see.

A few days back, I had been running around town…meetings with boutiques, and a denim buy for fall (omg my box clients need to start getting excited..I was drooling..literally) and was dressed pretty casually and comfortably.  Around 4pm, I got a call to meet a girlfriend for a quick bite and drink…so I ditched the kiddies at my parents and went for dinner and a drink.  I didn’t want to go through the process of picking out something totally new to wear…so when I popped back home I made three simple changes (ditched the hat, added jewelry, added heels) and was out the door.

In other news…have you all tried cuffing your skinny jeans?  I honestly hadn’t and am OBSESSED with this look.  It made my rockstars (that I have had for years) feel new, fresh and modern.  Try it…I think you will like it:)  Hope you find some outfit inspiration and have a great weekend!!!

Casual: Rockstar Skinny Jeans Old Navy available here, Oversized T via Katherine’s Boutique (old), Fedora Sole Society (sold out), Watch Invicta, Sandals Lucky Brand (old).

Dinnerdate:  Rockstar Skinny Jeans available here, Oversized T via Katherine’s Boutique (old), Earrings Stella and Dot available here, Bangles c/o Lydell available here, Pumps Christian Louboutin available here

Weekend Snippets and Pep Talk

Do you ever have one of those weeks where you feel like a failure all around?  Well maybe failure is too strong a word….I just had a crazy week and kind of felt #greatatnothing:( I know so many of you reading are full time moms as well as full time employees, so I hate to even complain.  I have the luxury of scheduling clients at my convenience and amazing flexibility with my career.  I am truly grateful and elated to even have a business that is getting progressively busier and busier.  All that said, striking the balance this spring has been HARD.  I am the busiest I have ever been and also have two kiddies now…so everything (schedule wise) is twice as hard.  I am very lucky to have support from my parents and sisters….Connor is three and I have yet to use a babysitter….#lucky.  I never used to feel the least bit guilty, but as the number of days I need coverage increase, I am starting too.  I used to consider myself a stay at home mom, who worked with a few special clients.  Now I would say my duties are a pretty even split….so some adjustments have to be made.  I am certain it will all work itself out. Any advice ladies..open for any suggestions on how to do it all!  Fortunately, I was able to relieve some stress come Friday with some of my girls for a mexican themed girls night out I hosted…we had a great time!  I rounded out the weekend with a Roll In The Rack service on Sunday and that about sums it up.  Hope you enjoy snippets from my weekend….back on Wednesday showing off my favorite new maxi from Guiliana’s line for HSN.

Sent this cutie pie to school Friday morning…..

Shopped for a client while Connor was at preschool (nugget came with me)…..

Dropped the kiddies at my parents late afternoon and started my GNO with Margarita in hand…..

Dress is a repeat from a few weeks ago (sold out) but I paired it will some HOT new shoes that I adore from Victoria Secret (currently on sale here)

Homemade Gaucamole + Patron = Deliciousness

Saturday I ended up on the hang (obviously)…but on the bright side I get to see this little angel face everyday….

Wore my new camo jacket (which you will see a post dedicated to sometime later this week) Sunday, available here.

New happy client….made room in her closet for all these goodies!

Can’t wait to show you how I styled up this killer cork belt mid week….

MAKE IT A GREAT WEEK:)

 I want to dedicate this post to my readers and clients. I took a break from the The Box Service, Closet Makeovers and Boutique Parties in December and January (aside from a few emergencies) to enjoy the holidays, focus on my family and recharge these thirty three year old batteries. It wasn’t that I was burnt out…I just needed a few moments to breathe and reorganize for 2013. When you take a break in the fashion world, you never know who will be there when you return (fashion is fickle). I was nervous that when I was ready, clients would have already shopped on their own, found a new stylist or not be interested in my services.  I am happy elated to say that February is packed with two closet makeovers and a new personal shopping appointment….the waiting list for March boxes is now in the double digits and I have booked my first Boutique Party back in my old stomping ground of Washington DC.  I am eternally grateful for all of your business, as it is you, my clients, readers and friends that got this whole personal shopping business off the ground a little less than two years ago. Thank you for allowing my dreams to come true as a personal stylist…..next up…my very own boutique….which is in the works…slowly but surely…the doors will eventually open:)

Today, I am featuring some of my favorite ladies (a few of which are on my Stylish Friends page). Each inspires me in a different way and I wanted to make sure to give them a thank you. Hopefully this list will connect you and expose some to new blogs filled with fabulous fashion, advice, mommy talk, DIY’s and much more.  Without further adieu…..in no particular order….

1. Glamamom is an amazing lifestyle blog that covers everything from fashion to mommy talk to Broadway play reviews. I love popping by and never knowing what I am going to find.

2.In Honor Of Design  There is something so sweet and nurturing about Anna. She has the most adorable little ones, a great sense of style and her DIY’s are off the chain.  

3.November Grey  You know I adore Tanya from our most recent collaboration. She is a total inspiration and I love seeing her thrifted finds. She mixes old and new with such style and finesse.

4.Stilettos and Diaper Bags is a favorite for sure.  Lisa is one of the toughest and most dedicated mommies I know and this lifestyle blog brings it ALL. She recently created an online consignment swap…so hop over to “Because I Shop To Much” and check out her site.

5.Village I have been following along with Krystal for quite some time.  I love her brand introductions and she is always serving up something fun and quirky that I have never seen or heard of.   LOVE that.

6.Bon Bon Rose Girls Kristin and Megan are quite the dynamic duo with one fantastic blog.  There Rosebud network is nothing short of genius and I have discovered so many on this list by becoming a member.

7.Get Your Pretty On is a newer blog and I although I haven’t been following very long, it is a weekly read.  Alison is no doubt beautiful and stylish but what really draws me in is she just seems so damn nice!

8.Grit and Glamour Vahni is one clever lady and I always love sitting down to her posts. I am a visual person who normally skips over text on blogs….yet with Grit and Glamour I always wish there were just one more paragraph. It is quite obviously her superb writing.  

9.For the Love of  I discovered Andrea’s blog while we were both pregnant…I fell in love with her maternity photo shoot and have been hooked since.  She has very down to earth posts and I enjoy reading her DIY’s…she has almost gotten me to get off my ass to do one…almost!

10.Dilly Dallas is one of the first blogs I discovered before I started my very own. She is an extremely talented artist that is commissioned by powerhouse retail brands.  Her blog has the best inspiration photos….I am not sure where she finds them and I always pop by for a quick peek.

Of course there are many more blogs that I love and visit regularly…too many to list in one post…but maybe I will do this every so often to keep exposing and connecting my favorite reads.

All for now….
C

Scenes from Christmas

Just a little peak into our Christmas.  From decor…to family….to a few gifts from the hubby….Hope you had a great holiday and continue on to an amazing New Year!  Post to come over the weekend about what to wear to a NYE house party:)

My beautiful mother and sisters

My little nugget….

My big nugget…..

Both my nuggets….. Does anyone else have major issues taking pics with both their children?  Realizing now that my holiday card was nothing short of a Christmas Miracle.

Shaken

I am a sarcastic person.  I always have been.  If you ask my longtime friends I am a sarcastic, not overly emotional person.  I rarely cry.  To be clear, it isn’t that I don’t feel sad, I do. I just choose to cry privately or not at all.  I also don’t share my deepest emotions often, I tend to hold them in. I share a lot about myself and my life (obviously not shy evident by the blog) but the really raw emotions are private for me. There are those few who I have opened up to over the years…parents, sisters, husband and best friends…but mostly I keep my deep emotions to myself.  Healthy, not healthy….not really sure…it is just the way I am.  Or maybe I should say, the way I was.

Since having my two sons, life has profoundly changed.  Gone are the self centered days where everything was about me.  I have two lives to worry about.  Any mother can relate.  I definitely feel more and cry more.  The sarcastic remarks roll slower off my tongue. Becoming a mother has made me a better person without a doubt in my mind.  These babies are everything.  I would walk through fire, stand in front of a bullet, literally lay my life down for those two.  I knew I would love them before I had them, but now that they are here it is sometimes indescribable what I feel for them.  Any mother would know.

I have seen tragedies in my life……The Columbine HighSchool Massacre, 9/11 Terrorist Attack and the Beltway Sniper Attacks.  They were all horrific and sad and I cried for all the victims of these horrible incidents.  I am not sure what makes the Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting different for me, all I can tell you is, I can’t shake it.  I have been in and out of crying spells every day since it happened.  I have been staring at my sons wondering how I can protect them from this world that seems beyond repair. I even cry for Adam, the shooter wondering what torment he must have been going through in his head to be able to stare into the eyes of an adorable six year old and shoot him or her point blank…twenty times.

I write this post with tears streaming down my face (I guess someone who cries in private isn’t a way I can describe myself any longer) wanting to be able to move on and get back to life as normal.  Is there life as normal after something like this?  I don’t know.  I know that something needs to happen.  Something needs to change.  Something good needs to come from this horror.  I hope that guns become more regulated and I am signing petitions.  I also hope that mental illness becomes a priority in this country and seen as a real disease by insurance companies.  I am signing petitions for this as well.  On the smallest scale, but the one that means the most to me, I am vowing to spend more time focused on my children….loving them, holding them close, caring for them and making sure they know they have someone to depend on…always…no matter what.

If you are anything like me you are a busy mom trying to juggle it all.  I spend hours working on clients wardrobes, updating my blog, updating my Facebook Page, networking my business.  As I try to get it all done, I dismiss my three year old, “go play with your toys, Mommy has to finish this”… something I say multiple times per day.  I am not doing this anymore.

My business and blog are still extremely important to me. I love what I do…helping women feel their best..making life/shopping easier for them.  I will continue to pour my passion into my business, blog and life, but not at the expense of my children and their time with me.   I think of those parents who have no child to tug at their arm and call “mommy” one hundred times per day.  I am so very lucky.

I hope you understand that although this is not the normal content of my blog I had to get this out there, off my chest and into the world before I can go on with holiday shopping lists and outfit posts. I promise to be back to regular fashion related content very soon as I try my hardest to get back to life as normal (whatever normal is).

Best
Carly

 

Thankful

As many of you have heard or seen on the news…..there is total devastation here at the place I call home, the Jersey Shore.  My immediate family and I are so lucky…we are all safe and our homes are still standing. My heart has been breaking for all those who haven’t been so blessed and have lost their homes, businesses and some even their lives in the wake of Sandy. I know I join many in feeling absolutely helpless…planning to spend the day trying to find out where I can donate clothing, food, diapers, toys etc to the surrounding shelters…I still don’t have power, but my parents do and we are fortunate enough to stay with them until power is restored. There is so much destruction and chaos, it is hard to know when anything will be back to normal…at some point we will continue our lives….but it isn’t today…an outfit post just doesn’t feel right so I am sharing the only thing that has the power to make me smile this past week….my sons. Hope you will join me in treasuring the ONLY thing that truly matters….family.

TREND ALERT: Colorblocked Bags 2012

$56.00
This Adler Bag is such a fun way to add a pop of color to your darker hued fall clothing.  Also loving the shape and structure of this bag.

$69.00
This Asos Bag is that perfect shade of mustard (one of my fav fall colors).  Great color combination here and for under 100 dollars it is a definite steal.

 

$98.00
This Danielle Nicole Bag looks way pricier than it’s $98.00 price tag.  Something very sophisticated and regal about the dark blue and black combination.

$118.00
This Guess Bag is neutral enough to go with everything.  Loving the soft greys and ivory and of course at around $100 it is extremely affordable.

$255.00
This Brahmin Bag is so unique. Love the color combo…totally unexpected and super chic! Brahmin makes a great bag, so the price tag is well worth it.

$348.00
This Furla Bag is such a fun combination of colors!  Purple and Red together…Why not?  Furla bags are impeccably made and worth the pushing it pricetag.

$598.00
This Marc Jacobs Bag is beautiful and sporting the hottest colors for the fall season.  Although colorblocking is “trendy” something about the shape and color combination is very timeless. Completely justified budget buster.

 

Top Outerwear Picks for 2012

A lightweight camel bomber jacket is perfect for transitional weather.  This one from GUESS is perfection.  Also admiring this one and if you are looking to save, try this one from Old Navy available in three colors and under $50.

 The classic black motorcycle jacket is the season must have.  Love the faux one above by Blank.  Kohl’s also has this one and this one for around $50 each.  If you plan to invest in real leather I recommend this one or for a major splurge this one.  

I feel like I don’t have to say much here….this coat is just bad ass. Love everything about it. Available by clicking here.

Love the mix of cotton with faux leather sleeves…army meets rocker…available here.  Obviously a hot trend with an extremely similar one available here and here.

                

I splurged last year on a fur vest and am so glad I did. They are definitely still on trend.  This faux fur vest is SUPER luxurious and available here.  If you like to take fashion risks, I am also digging this one with the ombre details and this one playing on the color blocking trend. If you are interested in purchasing “the real deal”, this one is really beautiful with the light/soft colors.

 

  The above coat is either a “love it” or “hate it”! I say LOVE IT!  Digging the fun 70’s vibe and it is sure to keep you super warm come the cold weather.  If you are feeling inspired…who else to turn to put the queen of 70’s chic….totally wild and crazy but fashion fun for sure found here.  Petite frames might find this one to be a better option.  This faux mink option is perfect over cocktail dresses with trendy 3/4 sleeves and sleek look.

I am a huge fan of houndstooth and it can be surprisingly neutral.  The coat above, although a splurge is beyond fabulous.  For a middle of the road price point,  this one is really great too and for a super affordable way to rock the trend try this one.

Happy Shopping!
Carly

We’re In Heaven

I have a post maternity fashion and amazing jewelry giveaway post lined up for over the weekend…until then…here is what I have been up to.  My little slices of heaven have been keeping me quite busy 🙂 Thank you for your patience as we are settling in….all things fashion very soon!

Preston Thomas Walko
Born Via C-section Wednesday August 29th at 8AM.
8 Pounds 20 Inches
He is truly an amazing baby.  He cries a little when hungry or when he wants to be changed but other then that, he is so content and chill.  I am not sure if it will last…but I am relishing in his good behavior for now.  When he was first born I thought he was a Connor mini me, but he has really changed in the past week and we aren’t sure who he looks like….all we do know is that we love him to bits.

Connor James Walko
Born via C-section October 2, 2009 at 7PM
8 pounds 13 ounces 21 Inches
What a tremendous big brother he is turning out to be.  Connor affectionately calls him “baby” and follows him from room to room making sure he has his binky and kissing him on the forehead…it seriously melts my heart.  Of course there are little bits of jealousy…which is natural since he has had ALL of our attention for almost 3 years.  Yesterday he tried to crawl on my lap while I was feeding Preston…it was so sweet…and I hated to turn him down… that is probably the biggest challenge….tending to the neediness of a newborn while balancing giving your toddler attention he deserves.  I am sure it will all work out:).

The update on mom….I am doing well after the C-section.  Second time around is easier, but still no walk in the park. Fortunately my husband is a dream and was able to be at home all this week and next.  I am breastfeeding for the first time (didn’t with Connor) so that has been really tough….but it seems to be working itself out now as Preston is gaining weight. I am feeling overwhelmingly thankful and complete now that I have these two lil men in my life.   Be back soon with some fun fashion over the weekend.

Carly

Posh Collections Giveaway!

The amazing Posh Collections is gifting the incredible statement necklace and matching bracelet in the photo below to one of my readers….as well as….a ONE HUNDRED DOLLAR gift certificate to use at their boutique location in Malvern, PA.  You can pop in and shop or you can use the gift card by visiting their Facebook Page where they update new merchandise daily. As many of you know..my lifelong dream is to open my own boutique here at the shore….and when I do…I am taking major cues from Tina, the beautiful and stylish owner.  Her buying sense, beautiful store and customer oriented staff are something to emulate.  Please enter below and GOOD LUCK!

Enter to win the orange and gold statement necklace, complimentary gold bracelet and one hundred dollar gift card pictured above.  Total Value $200 

Enter to Win:  GIVEAWAY CLOSED
* Necklace, Bracelet and Gift Card are all going to ONE winner!!!

1. Like TSF on Facebook here  to join in on fashion tips, conversation and of course great product reviews and giveaways!

2.  Like Posh Collections on Facebook here  to be in the know of new boutique deliveries, products and store events!

3. Please leave comment on this post stating that you have done the above.

* One winner will be chosen at random by random.org one week from today 7/30/12.  Open to US residents only.

Cristal Jewels Giveaway

As you know I love discovering new brands and Cristal Jewels is no exception.  Before bringing you this incredible giveaway, I explored the website in depth to learn more about the company and ogle the incredible baubles.  The owners, Noreen and Cynthia were united first by their children and then by their love of fine jewelry.  The entire jewelry line is handcrafted in Israel by a team of skilled artisans using only the finest metals and Swarovski© Crystals.  Each piece is more intricate, detailed and beautiful than the next.  I hope you will pop over to their site to check out all the goodies.  Discount code is coming early next week for you to purchase items- so stay tuned for that.  It is going to be hard to part with this fabulous necklace!!!  Happy Shopping and good luck:)

Pearl Crystal Twist Necklace valued at $139.00 additional photo and product details here

Enter to win:  GIVEAWAY CLOSED!

1.  “Like” TSF on Facebook and join the fashion community:)
2.  “Like” Cristal Jewels on Facebook
3.   Leave a comment below stating that you did above and include your contact email.

Easy as that!

*  Winner will be chosen via random.org next Friday July 6th.  Open to US Residents.

Good Luck!
Carly

HeatWave

The heatwave has been brutal the past couple days so I have turned to my easy jersey tank dress from SA VA . It is so comfortable it literally feels like pajamas. Truth be told, I pre-ordered this dress from the spring collection when I discovered it had pockets. SOLD! I have said it before and I will say it many times again….Comfortable and chic is my motto! The lime green seemed to scream for all my orange accessories. Hope you find some outfit inspiration and are staying cool.

              

Dress SA VA available here , Scarf Gemma G via D.Monaco Boutique, Necklace c/o Zolie Designs similar available here , Bag Marc Jacobs (no longer available), Sandals Sam Edelman via Katherine’s Boutique.

I am linked up for Monday Mingle over at MomTrends!  Come join in the fashion fun:)
C

Men’s Department

I had an appointment today with a fellow New Jersey blogger Nicole….super mom to FOUR boys under the age of 6!  I am worried about how I will handle two and she juggles a full time job, and husband, four boys and still finds time to share her journey at Mommy & Everything.  Looking to spice up her casual “mom on the go” wardrobe (as so many of us are) she enlisted my help.  We hit some of her favorites like The Limited (killer sale here, markdowns are an additional 25% off) and The Loft (also great sales- buy one shirt get one 1/2 off) and my favorite for affordable mommy fashion, Old Navy.  It was lots of fun getting to know Nicole and helping her step outside her comfort zone. Normally in black, greys and neutrals, I styled her up in raspberry capri’s available here and some other bright tops and accessories.  Below is what I wore for our shopping excursion…stand out piece to mention is the Webster for Target striped shirt…Shh, it’s from the men’s department!  Hope you find some outfit inspiration and have a great week!

Shirt Webster for Target (men’s) available here, Shorts Motherhood Maternity via Macy’s, Denim Vest Old Navy (currently sold out but is available in stores), Scarf Banana Republic, Earrings Lola’s Boutique, Bracelets combo of David Yurman and Lia Sophia, Sunglasses D&G and shoes Stuart Weitzman.