Wednesday

I bought a dress!




So it's not often that I get to purchase clothing since we moved. Our rent is higher yet we're making the same amount. So my clothing budget is pretty much nada. But one of my oldest friends is getting married in a month and my amazing parents decided to buy me a new dress for the wedding! Hooray! With my $150 budget in hand, I scoured ten or twelve local boutiques.

Upon setting foot in Bevello, I instantly knew it was the shop for me. Beautiful, cozy and intimate, and the clothing was perfect. It was all in that price range where you know the clothing is quality, but the prices don't make you cringe or feel guilty. And after a couple minutes I found the perfect dress.

Honestly, the picture of the Bossa Nova Dress ($130) by Max and Cleo does not do it justice. It fits me perfectly. Like it was tailored already! The draping is just fancy enough for a cocktail dress so that I can wear it for evening and nighttime events alike. I'm in love! I found it over at Mod Cloth but it was sold out. But then I also found it at Dillard's for a couple dollars less (linked above). Anyway, you should scoop one up if you have a little tummy like me. It does wonders for my figure.


Now I have to figure out shoes! Any ideas?
with virtual hugs,
laura

Tuesday

Back To School Backpacks

Image 1 of Firetrap Corporal Ruck Sack

Whether you're in high school, college, graduate school, or even out in the workforce, finding a bag to carry your books in can be stressful and often fruitless. Many students turn to gigantic purses to solve their problems, which can get heavy and wear on the straps of your bag.

 Traveler Rucksack Bag - Roxy

But rest assured, there are good bookbags out there! Ones that you can wear on your back to help lighten the load! Check out the Firetrap Corporal Ruck Sack ($66) on sale at ASOS right now (top). It looks so professional and is a lot larger than you think. And I really love the Traveler Rucksack Bag ($62) at Roxy (above) because of it's pretty pattern but muted color palette.

Image 1 of ASOS Floral Canvas Backpack

If you want something that will show off your girly side, go for the Floral Canvas Backpack ($64) at ASOS (above). But if you're looking for something a little more subdued, you should definitely check out the three options below. The first is the Deux Lux Nylon Backpack ($69) from Urban Outfitters. It's material can be wiped clean, it's fits a laptop and several books, and it's got great pockets. Love!



If you like something a little androgynous and rustic, the Wagner Backpack ($98) at Fossil is pretty perfect. It has a separate pocket that will fit a 15" laptop and two great front pockets for your cell, keys, and lippy.



And my absolute favorite, from the best store for backpacks, is the Premium Leather Linea Rucksack ($165) at ASOS. Isn't it gorgeous?! Maybe not as practical as some of the others, but truly lovely.



Did you buy a new backpack for school? I'd love to see it.
with virtual hugs,
laura

Monday

Sexy Crochet - no, really!


Crochet flats

These Crochet Flats ($115) by Hibon at Pixie Market are fab! The removable legwarmers are perfect for when you want to show off a bit, but the shoes alone are incredibly chic with their crochet tips and leather base. And that color is on Pantone's fall color forecast list. So you'll definitely be on trend as the weather changes.



with virtual hugs,
laura

Tuesday

Pretty Pinterest: Stuff I Don't Need But Really Want




Today's Pretty Pinterest Post is full of beautiful finds for home and play - truly things I have absolutely no need for, but they would make my life more luxe.

Above is a decadent camera, originally pinned by Vega Cecilia and found on Flickr through John Kratz. Below you'll see two sets of vintage suitcase drawers, originally pinned by Dawna Keeney and created by James Plumb.





Above we have some ridiculously special handmade twig crochet hooks, originally pinned by Mo Oh. And finally, we have this amazing shower head, originally pinned by It's Magic.



with virtual hugs,
laura

Monday

Polish Update



I finally found my grey nail polish. Sephora by OPI in Break A Leg-Warmer ($9.50). I think it's lovely... only wish is that it were a little more matte. But overall, it's perfect! Should I decide I don't like it, this is my backup. But grey nails are just so simple and chic and look great with everything!

with virtual hugs,
laura

PS - image found at the beauty look book. That isn't my hand... but those nails are so beautifully manicured!

{update:} after wearing it for a couple days, it's a little too greenish hued and definitely needs to be matte. with two coats, it looked a bit dark as well. next time I'd stick with one thin coat. oh well! still searching...

Friday

A New Take On Online Dating




Ever considered online dating? Does your date's music taste make a big difference in your opinion of him? Enter, Tastebuds. This new dating site matches you with a potential beau based on your favorite (and not so favorite) bands. And some of the guys on there are pretty good-looking. I mean if they care enough to pick the dating site that matches music tastes, they're probably pretty cool to begin with! If you check it out, let me know how it goes! I'm taken, but quite curious to see how this site works out.

with virtual hugs,
laura

PS - found this story from the delightful people over at R29!

Thursday

A Touch of Chevron



Pecos Handpainted Leather Bracelet: White Chevron

I always hesitate to go all-out on a trend. I never know if it will still be popular in a year's time.... and I've definitely made the mistake enough times to hold back now. But, you can find classy pieces that reference a trend that will look good no matter what's "this season". For example, I love this adorable Pecos Handpainted Leather Bracelet ($24) from Son of a Sailor. High quality leather, hand painted with a cute chevron pattern, and finished off professionally with a brass clasp.... just lovely.

with virtual hugs,
laura

Wednesday

Pretty Party Piece


Peach Fade Vessel

This Peach Fade Vessel ($46) by Up In The Air Somewhere is perfect for table decor or as a tealight holder... it would even look great with some short blooms or perhaps be an interesting cup for your dishware. The best part is that they offer bulk pricing! That makes them perfect for weddings and parties!

with virtual hugs,
laura

Tuesday

Pretty Pinterest: Stuff I Don't Need But Really Want




Today's Pretty Pinterest is all about what to wear. Honestly though... my closet can't handle all these additions!

Above is a beautiful mint green gown, originally pinned by Melanie Kollmai and available for purchase through Karen Caldwell Design. Below are some sparkly pink heels, originally pinned by Gracie Fisher.





And this last image is such a romantic lacy scarf, originally pinned by Wen Duan and available through purchase through German site DaWanda.

with virtual hugs,
laura

Monday

What Can You Get For $5


2

I'm loving Fiverr, a website that offers up cool things for just $5 each. It's pretty spectacular what you can find on there. I love the artistic options, like getting a leaf message cut for you (above), original drawings just for you, and custom portraits.

If you're a business owner, there are some pretty cool things. My favorite is the $5 logo design with unlimited revisions. And if you don't like that artist, you can pick out another one... hey! it's just $5! Logos are also good for families. You can print it on labels and calling cards and thank you notes - anything your family needs.

And here's an example of the cute and unique things you can find... help planning a marriage proposal is available here, here, and here among other places.

What can you find on Fiverr?
with virtual hugs,
laura

Tuesday

Pretty Pinterest: Stuff I Don't Need But Really Want




I'm going to do a lovely new column featuring Pretty Pinterest finds. I love Pinterest, and I imagine you do too! If you are clueless right now, you really must check it out. Well today I have two food-related things I really want, but really don't need.

Above is a stunning wooden cupcake liner, originally pinned by Adriana Bellet. And below are some yummy S'mores in a Jar, originally pinned by Emily Collins. And thankfully there's a recipe!



with virtual hugs,
laura

Monday

Thanks for the Vacation...


Mini Pies - Two Bite Pies - One Dozen - Perfect for Wedding or Party Favors

Thank you, wonderful readers, for allowing me that week's vacation. I didn't really vacation, per se. But I took a blogging break to catch up on work around the house and to do some very important day-job-ish things.

As a present, today I'm going to show you some amazing berryliscious finds. As summer comes to a close, I'm wanting to get the very last of the berries from the grocery store and make lovely little tarts and whatnot. But I'm much too busy! So instead, I think I'll order a few homemade favorites from Etsy. Here's what's on my list:

Above, Two Bite Mini Cherry Pies ($21 for a dozen) from Kimbo's Cookies make a great picnic food. They come in pretty packaging too, so you can give them as a gift if you like. I think they're perfect for hostess gifts this time of year!

Natural & Organic Gourmet Blueberry Butter Cookies (12 Count)

These Organic Blueberry Butter Cookies ($9 for a dozen) from Xocolatt Chocolates look addictive. They're even made with eggs from the baker's own hens! In a beautiful gift box, these would be a nice thank you for friends and family who have been especially sweet lately. Be sure to check out that shop. All their sweet things are so incredibly photographed.... you'll want to eat everything right off the screen!

Half Pint jar of Jalapeno Blackberry Jam

And this yummy Jalapeno Blackberry Jam ($4.50 for a half pint jar) from Spradiling Farms would be so amazing to spread on toast or sandwiches, year-round. There's a great marinade recipe (and a dip recipe for the entertainers among you) at the link as well, for those of you who want to have one more grill-out before the school year starts.

What are your favorite berry treats? Mine has to be those delicious black raspberry jam, beef, and brie sandwiches the Boy makes me. Maybe I'll post a recipe and photos soon!