Tuesday, January 31, 2012

My January via Instagram - Photo A Day Challenge

For the past month, I've been participating in Fat Mum Slim's January Photo Challenge

While I quickly grew tired of keeping up with the challenge, I'm really glad I did it and saw it through - now I have a record of at least something I saw/did every day for the entire month!  There's another challenge going on for February, and though I don't think I'm going to participate, I may choose to take a dedicated picture here or there for some of the themes I like most.  Regardless, I wanted to share what the last month has looked like.  And if you're on Instagram, feel free to follow me (@wendisiya)!

Loving Lately - Shades of Purple

As I mentioned previously, a close friend bought a house a few blocks away from mine and I've spent many evenings over the last two weeks helping her move in.  While she's now living in the house, she hasn't fully furnished it yet so I can't share pictures of the work she's done so far (though let me tell you - they've owned the house for less than a month and have already made it their own in so many ways - that's what I love most about real estate!).  She did pick a fabulous purple color for her living room, though, and while at first I was a bit skeptical, how amazing it looks on the wall has really got me loving the color.  While certain shades of purple are better suited for little girl's rooms, at least to my eye, a deep plum or a pretty mauve color comes across as rich, formal and elegant and lends almost a regal air to a space, in addition to coming across as feminine without being overtly girly.  Here are some pretty purple spaces (or accented spaces) that I'm loving lately:

bedrooms - Crate & barrel Vista Console Table silk purple drapes purple tufted velvet chaise lounge floor mirror sheepskin rug gray walls  Amoroso



living rooms - Silver French Flea Market Table purple ikat chairs black and white rug  ikat chairs  purple ikat french bergere chairs, white

dining rooms - Benjamin Moore - Nightfall - purple accent wall gray shield dining chairs yellow cushions natural birch dining table white lantern pendant purple gray yellow dining room

dining rooms - purple velvet dining chairs black modern buffet ivory drum light pendant dining room  Prince would be jealous   Purple & black

dens/libraries/offices - Ikea EXPEDIT gray purple walls purple drapes purple boxes white desk white table chairs green floral rug painted wood beams
How about you, have you decorated with purple in your home?  Would you?

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Not Joking...

People tend to think I'm joking when I say something, as in I'll say something that I completely mean and people don't pay attention because they think I'm joking.  I'm not sure if it is because I think differently than most people, and they can't fathom believing that I really mean what I'm saying, or if I'm just more real/transparent than most people.  Either way, when I saw this Someecard over at Pawleys Island Posh, I immediately chuckled because it rings so true and wanted to share!  Happy Weekend!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Friday's Fancies - Blog Swap!

For this edition of Friday's Fancies, we are blog swapping! When I first received the theme, I was super excited as, being new to blogging, I hadn't yet done any guest posts or had any guest post-ers. When I received my match, Brianne from BrianneLee, I was even more excited as I immediately loved Brianne's blog and style, especially her love and arsenal of accessories and her amazing vintage finds! After some email exchanges, Brianne and I were armed with enough information about each other to create outfits for one another. I totally love what Brianne created for me below and could totally see myself sporting either look! Head on over to Brianne's blog to see the looks I created for her, and to Long Distance Loving to see the other Friday's Fancies looks!

For Christmas, Wendy's fiance, affectionately nicknamed Esposito, gave her a cute faux fur vest and a very pretty monogrammed necklace. I wanted to incorporate these two gifts into her looks. Wendy works in finance and needs a professional outfit for day. I picked a no-nonsense dress and accessorized with her necklace, some bangles, and leopard heels to add a pop of fun to her look. Wendy loves to spend her free time decorating her house, and I thought the weekend look I created would be fun for running errands to home decorating stores. I used her faux fur vest and necklace, skinny jeans, a striped top, leopard flats to incorporate some pattern mixing, a pretty turqoise ring, and a leather tote so she can carry around magazines or a notebook.
For Wendy

Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Investment Bag


I'm in the market for a new purse.  Usually, I don't consider purses to be investments - I like to switch it up every few months or so (beyond that I have a really hard time keeping my purse organized!) so it doesn't make sense to me to buy an expensive designer bag only to relegate it to the back of my closet in a few months.  Lately, though, I've been thinking more and more about switching tactics and investing in a fabulous bag that I will keep (and use) forever.  Something well made, real, simple and classy for every day use that manages to look at once professional and stylish.  I loved the look of the Celine Luggage Tote seen in various bloggers' pictures, but it wasn't until I saw one up close and personal that I really took notice.  Big enough to hold my Ipad, notebooks and the multitude of files I tend to carry around for work at all times, but pretty enough to help make a "fashion statement."  And the front pocket (essential for my keys and phone) helps it rival what has traditionally been my dream back - the YSL Muse.  Now if only it were in my budget!

Do you own an investment bag?

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Work It Wednesday - Peplum

One trend that took me a while to come around to is peplum.  Peplum is defined as a "short full flounce or an extension of a garment below the waist, covering the hips," which I always thought would make a more bottom-heavy body type like mine just look bigger.  However, after seeing some images floating around the blogosphere, I decided I really do like the feminine detail and how jazzed up an otherwise basic piece looks when it's peplumed (I'm pretty sure it's not meant to be used as a verb, but I'm using it anyway).  So for this Work it Wednesday post, I styled up some peplum pieces in casual, dressy, and work looks!
Work It Wednesday: Peplum

Head on over to The Good Life for Less to see the other Work it Wednesday posts!  Do you own any peplum pieces?

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Loving Lately: Navy & Pink

A few months ago, I pinned this picture featuring Navy & Pink - a color combination that I was considering using as my wedding colors. 

Over the last week or so, this picture has been repinned no less than 80+ times, so it seems many others like the color combination as well.  What I love about it is how the feminine pink is grounded by the masculine navy blue, so it comes across as very ying-yang which is why I was considering it as wedding colors.  Now that I see how popular it is I may have to find another color combination for my wedding, though I still love the color mix and especially how well it works in both the home and in your wardrobe.  Here are some other inspiration images featuring navy and pink.

hot pink H&M blazer - navy joes jeans


Monday, January 23, 2012

My Weekend in Pictures

I enjoyed a nice, quiet weekend this week - quite a welcome respite from the usual hectic schedule I always end up setting up for myself!

Friday night, I stayed home playing housewife - cleaned the entire house and made a delicious dinner that I forgot to take pictures of (but it consisted of twice baked potatoes and steak au poivre and, even Esposito agreed, was restaurant quality ;)).

I did receive my two (FREE!) Zoya nail polishes in the mail, and promptly tried them out.  It was my first time using Zoya polish, and though people rave about the brand, I'm not yet convinced as I needed two coats of each color (reviews I read suggested it is pigmented enough to only need one).  I'll let you know how well chipping holds up this week!

Loredana on the left, Pascha on the right
Zoya Loredana

Zoya Pascha
On Saturday, we got our first snow storm of the season (we had one in October, but that was technically still fall)!  I spent my morning watching movies and cuddling with the dogs.

Part of my back yard

The view out of my living room window
By 6pm, though, the roads seemed clear enough and since I had two parties to attend, I promptly got dolled up and headed out.  My parents hosted a fundraiser for the leading political party in the Dominican Republic - where my family is from - so I attended that event first, and then met up with Esposito at his sister's "baby welcoming" party (the baby was born premature about a week before the baby shower, so she held a welcoming party instead!).

I like to think the purple dress helped me stand out amidst the dreary, snowy day!
On Sunday, I did some window shopping (didn't buy anything) and then settled in at home to watch the Giants vs. 49ers game.  I'm not a huge football fan (or of any sports, really) but I do like to tune in during major events like the Superbowl and World Cup and since the Giants are a local team, I figured I'd might as well watch ;).  I didn't take any pictures on Sunday, but here are two others that made it to my Instagram feed related to the January Photo a Day Challenge (I'll post my full month's worth of pictures once the challenge has concluded!).

My handsome beau

My shoe closet
As usual, I'm linking up to a {little} dash of ash's Instagram link party - head on over and see some of the other entries! And if you're not following me on Instagram, feel free to @wendisiya!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Friday's Fancies - Outfit Inspiration

For today's Friday's Fancies post, the theme is taking an outfit from the blogosphere/pinterest and recreating it with our own twist. When I saw this outfit pop up on my feedreader, I immediately knew I had to use it as my inspiration.

The monochromatic mix of faux fur, sequins, and nudes comes across super stylish despite being so trend-heavy.  And it's definitely a look that I could recreate with items in my closet and actually wear, which makes it all the more appealing as, let's be honest, some of the looks fashion bloggers feature can be a little far-out, at least for a normal girl like me in my everyday surroundings!

In adding my own twist, I figured I'd pile another trend on to the mix and recreate the look with color.

Friday's Fancies - Outfit Inspiration

Head on over the Long Distance Loving to see the other Friday's Fancies posts and inspirations!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Oh, The Places I've Been...

In the Fall of 2002, I was entering my second year at college and had declared myself an international finance major.  I knew I wanted to travel, and had found two programs that would let me do so that year - I was to spend winter break traveling Europe with International Business Seminars (including spending NYE '03 in Paris - something I'll never forget!) and the summer living and working in France (major for me as I spent most of my middle and high school years studying French) followed by three weeks backpacking through Europe.

Once I had signed myself up for both programs, I worked on renewing my passport and by October of that year had a fresh new passport in hand.  I remember feeling so "adult" as I had completed and processed the application myself, and I vowed then to fill all the pages in my new passport by the time the expiry date arrived.  Well, here we are ten years later and I am happy to say that I achieved my goal (actually ahead of schedule as I was told on my last international trip in October that I could no longer fly abroad without either getting additional pages or a new passport)! 

As I start the proceedings to get a new passport, I can't help but look back on all the memories I created doing what I love to do most - travel - over the last ten years!  Unfortunately, travel stamps aren't as pretty in real life as some images make them seem so I'll only share a few pictures of my passport pages to show just how full they really are. (and sorry for the Iphone pictures - but my camera is still not working!)

And to tally it all up for posterity, these are the places I've been (with this passport - a bit misleading as all the travel I did within Europe was mostly by train so no stamps from those places visited):

  • Dominican Republic - Puerto Plata, Punta Cana and Santo Domingo
  • Colombia - Bogota
  • Mexico - Mexico City and Cancun
  • France - Paris
  • Chile - Santiago
  • United Kingdom - London
  • Costa Rica - San Jose
  • Venezuela - Caracas
  • Jamaica - Montego Bay
  • Brazil - Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro
  • Canada - Toronto
  • Panama - Panama City
  • Argentina - Buenos Aires
  • Peru - Lima

  • And in map form (including all countries visited, regardless of whether I have a stamp or not ;))
    Make yours @ BigHugeLabs.com

    I really need to get over to Africa / Asia / the Middle East!

    Wednesday, January 18, 2012

    Work It Wednesday - Drop-Shoulder Cardigan

    Around mid-week last week, I received an email from Banana Republic announcing a 50% of everything "Power Hour" sale between 11am - 2pm. My colleague and I took our lunch breaks together, and, rather than eating, drove to our nearest Banana Republic to see what they had.  I wasn't shopping for anything in particular, but I found this drop-shoulder cardigan and thought it was cute.
    When I saw the price, I knew I could not pass it up.  The original price was $120, and online you can still find it at 99.99.  In the store it was marked down to $24.99 and eligible for an additional 50% off.  That's right - this beauty came home with me for a mere $12.49!!  So for this Work It Wednesday post, I wanted to show different ways I could wear it - buttoned over a white tee and skinny jeans on the weekend, unbuttoned over a black shirt and leather leggings with killer shoes and statement jewelry for drinks with the girls, or belted over a patterned sweater dress for work.
    Work It Wednesday - Drop Shoulder Cardigan

    Don't you love a great bargain? I always say - make sure you sign up for the email/mailing lists of your favorite stores because you never know what perk they will give you!

    Head on over to The Good Life for Less to see the other Work It Wednesday posts!

    Tuesday, January 17, 2012

    My Weekend in Pictures

    Since I had the day off work yesterday in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday, I gave myself a little blogging break as well;)  Here are some snippets from my three day weekend, filled with some house projects, quality time with my family and Esposito, and lots of eating & drinking!

    Friday night, I finally finished my molding project and put our dining space back together.  A lot of the molding is hidden either behind the curtain or bookcase, but I love it and think it makes the room look so much bigger!
    On Saturday, I spent some quality time with my little sister before she headed back to college after her winter break.
    Since we were at my mom's house visiting my sister, Esposito and I decided to dine at the Uno's we always visited when we first started dating (and I lived at my parents)!  While it is a far drive from where we live now, this is one of the best Uno's in the area as it has its own brewery.  We may or may not have bought ourselves one of these 64oz growlers of beer to take home, and may or may not have finished it already.
    While Esposito worked on Sunday, I got to work on a little DIY project.  I fully intended to have it done by yeseterday so I could link up to a Pinterest challenge sponsored by another blog, but alas the weekend got in the way.  I'll still share the project once I'm done - but here's a sneak peak at the inspiration!
    Sunday night, Esposito and I enjoyed a cozy night in catching up on some of our favorite shows (he hates that I snapped proof that he loves Desperate Housewives!).
    Monday we both had off work for MLK's birthday so we started our day with diner breakfast (the best kind ;)) and then headed out for some outlet shopping.

    Monday night, we visited the newest bar in our area for dinner and drinks!
    As usual, I'm linking up to a {little} dash of ash's intagram link party!  Now, it's time to get back to work which is always all the more difficult after an extended time off!  How was your weekend? 

    Friday, January 13, 2012

    Friday's Fancies - Color Crush

    For this edition of Friday’s Fancies, the theme is Color Crush.  Now that the holiday festivities are out of the way, and the winter doldrums are setting in, it seems everyone has been turning their attention to color - my feedreader has been off the charts with color stories for both your wardrobe and your home.  While I don't shy away from color myself, it never comes naturally either.  When I look at my selections while shopping, more often than not I find a sea of black, greys and other neutrals.  Likewise in my home, while I enjoy a pop of color here and there, the overall palette tends to be more neutral.  So for my Friday's Fancies post I decided to go all out in monochromatic color, and my color of choice is emerald green.  I own a dress similar to this from Lulu's (the much loved La La Love dress) that I have yet to wear - I'm waiting for the right midday wedding or other social event to wear it to!

    Friday's Fancies Color Crush

    Head on over to Long Distance Loving to see the other Friday's Fancies looks!

    Thursday, January 12, 2012

    Give Me Stripes!

    I'm pretty set on having striped curtains in the dining room - I love the look of striped curtains in various bloggers' homes, and I know that I want a print and something with a lot of white to bring more light to the space.








    At first I was on the fence about making them myself, buying pre-made panels, or going an in-between route and making panels out of striped fabric.  Who am I kidding - though I admire all the bloggers and their DIY savvy, I know that I will never have the patience to measure out and paint/sew perfectly straight stripes.  At the same time, there are few striped panels available in the colorway I'm looking for (gray/white) and those that are available (like the much loved shower curtain from West Elm that I would in some way/shape/form make taller to fit my room) just don't make sense from a budgetary perspective.  So semi-DIY it is.  Here are some fabrics I'm considering - I think I need to see these in person so I may just be ordering some samples in the coming days!

    1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8

    Which do you like better?