Case of the Winter Blues

emily  emily1  emily2  emily3  emily4Blazer (similar) // Tee // Jeans // Booties (similar) // Bag // Bracelets (similar)// Necklace (similar) // Watch      // Sunnies

Winter is my absolute least favorite season to dress for. There I said it. While I can appreciate the art of a good oversized sweater, especially if it is a turtleneck, I absolutely detest having to put on layer upon layer of bulky items that just make you feel like a marshmallow. I am a southern girl, so the fact that the grey weather makes my skin painfully pale is just an added negative to my hatred for this season.

The way I beat the winter blues is by wearing colors and shapes that make me happy. That break the mold on traditional winter wear of neutrals on neutrals or all black everything. Not that I don’t love both of these options and wear them quite often. Le duh.

This jacket is the definition of a shape that makes me giddy like a school girl with a giant crush on the super hot star football player. The exaggerated puffed shoulder is a nod to the giant shoulder pads of the 80′s, but completely modern and super chic. And that color! (Can you believe it was under $50!!)

The pop of pretty pink from the bag and necklace in this look elevates the basic tee and jeans for me. I am thinking that duo is going to be on hard repeat.

Side note, I am also a giant fan of the colored lip for winter.

How do y’all like to beat the winter drag?

xo, EM

 

Photos by Marianne Lucille Photography

Tres Chic Boutique // Put A Bow On It!

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There are a few things I love most in life, and one of those is bow jewelry. Maybe it’s the chic, Kate Spade-esque look of a bow, or my undeniable love of presents that has me swooning. I have necklaces, bracelets, earrings (that I wear daily and my sister hates because they are beginning to tarnish *insert sobbing here*) and now I have the most gorgeous little midi-ring thanks to my friends at Tres Chic Boutique! If you’ve never owned a midi ring, let me go ahead and answer the 2 questions I know you’re wondering about – 1. Yes, they’re comfortable. 2. No, they will not fall off your finger. If you have a toddler aged child, it will fit them like a standard ring fits you. My 3 year old thinks this ring is hers, despite my insisting it’s actually mine, because “…but Mom, it fits MY finger better!” :-)

Don’t be fooled by all my bow talk; Bows are not the only jewelry I’m swooning over from Tres Chic Boutique…I’d also take this, this, this, and these (which I find hilarious) in a hot minute!! They offer such great prices, especially on large statement necklaces.

Now for a fun little giveaway where EVERYONE WINS!! You will win either a $5, $10, or $15 gift card to Tres Chic Boutique, and entering is easy as pie!

Everybody Sparkles Giveaway Rules:

1. Sign Up Via E-mail Here

2. Follow @treschicny on Instagram

3. Leave a comment on MY (@playdatesandpearls) Instagram photo telling me which Tres Chic items are your favorite!

XO – Samantha

Oversized or Cropped.

Before I even get started with today’s rant, I just have to take a minute to talk about our favorite gal Samantha and the fact that her and her hubby make the most adorable children like EVER. I mean, I know y’all have seen that precious Harper by now. I can’t get enough of those cheeks, not to mention the outfits. All this cuteness on my Instagram feed makes this perpetually single gal want babies. Lots o’ babies. Guess I kinda need a man first right?!

Enough of me living vicariously through this perfect little family, let’s get down to business.

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Top – Pink Blush // Jeans – J.Crew // Pumps – Marshall’s (they are Guess!) // Necklace – Kendra Scott // Sunnies – RayBans

This season it seems like everything is either oversized or slightly cropped. Sweaters, the infamous blanket scarves, t-shirts, even hats. You name it, it was cut three sizes bigger than normal or cut to show your belly button. Now, don’t get me wrong. The eternal “basic white girl” in me absolutely loves both trends. However, it is beyond easy to go from cute & trendy to Mary-Kate & Ashley bag lady style to you looking like you’ve tried on a 12-year-old girl’s clothes. Not to hate on the Olsen twins, they basically taught me everything in life growing up.

Fit and proportion are the key pieces in making these trendy shapes possible. The other items in your look have to be the right fit and give the opposite shape to make a look work.

For the cropped options (like the sweater in today’s pictures above):

1. High waisted denim (like the ones I got at J.Crew) to elongate and to not show too much skin.

2. Midi skirts. These are a god-send and probably my most favorite skirt EVER.

3. Large cardigans or the poncho to give texture.

For the oversized options:

1. Skin tight pants. Leather leggings are perfect. I also, spoiler alert, wear my yoga pants from Old Navy as pants.

2. The skinny, tailored sweatpants. Always with a heel.

3. Over-the-knee boots. Especially if the sweater is large enough to be a short dress. The one way pants aren’t always required.

**One thing I can’t stress enough is to find a tailor for your staple items. Someone to take the clothes from the rack you found them on, to one of a kind, only fit for you pieces. WORTH IT. **

Are y’all loving these oversized & cropped tops as much as I am?!

xo, Emily 

Mad for Plaid

Hooray for hump day!! I dunno about y’all but I am in need of a weekend already – this week has been bananas!! The nesting phase has absolutely kicked in and I spent the last two days putting up Christmas, finishing the nursery, packing the final hospital bag necessities, and moving around all the furniture in my house. No joke, my glass and marble bar even got moved (because the location and setup of my BAR totally matters right before bringing a newborn home)…my big ol’ preggo butt took it apart shelf by shelf and carried each (ridiculously heavy) piece to it’s new location. I’m sure my OB would be thrilled. Also finding new homes in my house: my wingback chairs, hallway table, stendig calendar, Harper’s standing nursery lamp, two giant mirrors (switched for shape), and my 9 foot christmas tree. Ba-BAM! Mama’s been busy. Someone who has NOT been busy, at all, lately is my baby. I have now had Non-Stress Tests done at both my weekly check-ups and will continue having them weekly until she arrives because she is a sloth. I think she’s just about out of room and can’t hardly move around anymore, but my doctor is closely monitoring her because of it.

In other news, I have a very special post for you today thanks to P+P’s newest Fashion contributor (and total babe), Emily! You might remember Em from this (super old!) post where we styled Cobalt Blue together. She is gorgeous, has such amazing taste, and the absolute sweetest personality to go with it. Go check out her blog, The Style Hunter if you’re not already following her. You can also find her on Instagram, where she posts tons of great OOTD’s.

The Style Hunter Collage

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There are very few things I can honestly say are staples in my wardrobe. I love to switch things up, make unexpected pairings and take advantage of the fact that trends change every season. Adding items to your wardrobe that will make an impact are my specialty. Currently these items include, but are not limited to…

1. Gigantic, slightly obnoxious sized baubles. Statement necklaces are a favorite.

2. A good leather top. I’ve currently got a short sleeved and a crop top version.

3. A crimson colored lip. Or really any bright lip.

4. A wool fedora.

5. FUR. Fur vest. Fur jacket. Fur lined hoodie. (faux fur of course!)

The only way these show stopping pieces can reach their full potential is by the great basics that become a canvas. For example, in this look, denim and a great flannel plaid with a neutral bootie make the other pieces shine.

If you find a pair of jeans that speak to you, hug every curve and make you think they were literally painted on, do your Superbowl touchdown dance in the fitting room. Make sure your booty looks good. Give yourself a pat on the back and then buy multiple pairs.  My newest favorite has to be the Lookout High-Rise from J. Crew. They suck you in, and give every one I’ve seen try them on that hourglass figure. And who doesn’t want that?!

This fall, and every fall I think, plaid is always a staple. It just works. And this one, also from J. Crew (shocker), does not disappoint. For those of y’all that don’t know, I am a vPS (very personal stylist) for J. Crew, so basically I fall in LOVE with everything they do, the second it hits the floor. And let me tell you, this flannel sold out at my store in a matter of days. INSANE. But it’s that good.

What are some of your staples and some of your more trendy items for fall?!

xo, Emily

Pumpkin Patch & Catching Up!

Hello Friends!! I’m sure you’ve noticed that as I get closer and closer to my due date, my presence here is slowly getting more spaced out. I have absolutely no intentions of abandoning my fun little corner of the blogosphere, I’m just becoming more focused on the present and spending quality time with my big girl before my little girl breaks up the party. :-) You can continue to expect 2-3 posts weekly instead of the daily posts that I used to do. You can also always catch me on Instagram – I find it far easier to keep you all in the loop on my daily chaos over there! In the coming month I’ll be introducing you to some amazing bloggers who have so graciously volunteered to be contributors. They are quite literally a few of my favorite bloggers, and they write some of the only blogs that I manage to keep up with on a daily basis anymore. Ok, enough shop talk, lets look at pictures of my cute kid, shall we..and maybe a few bumps?! Oh, and my husband (who just finished a lemon-lime sno-cone and has a sickly looking tongue. Mine was dragons blood flavor…what flavor is that even?!)pumpkin patch 3 pumpkin patch pumpkin patch2 pumpkin patch4

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This last picture kills me!! She saw a teeny tiny dragon fly land next to her and she freaked out, and threw her pumpkin at it. I’ve ruined this child with my fear of spiders and creepy crawlers. Camryn is wearing her Cray Cray tee from Little Big Dreamers, skinny jeans from good ol’ Target, and Hunter wellies.

I went in on Friday & again yesterday for baby appointments and everything with little miss Harper is great! Other than the fact that I’m still getting sick on an almost daily basis, my pregnancy is progressing as it should. She currently weighs 3 pounds 15 oz. and is measuring at 32 weeks today (a few days behind my actual date), but her legs are measuring over 2 weeks ahead! I grow babies with long legs, chunky cheeks, and no hair! Ha! I had lost about 5 pounds, but gained all 5 back in the last week, so that’s a really good sign. The new nausea med I’m taking has been really helping reduce how often I’m getting sick. HOORAY!! Just 7 more weeks, or less.

Yesterday I took Camryn to the park to enjoy the amazing weather we’ve been having here in Austin, and we picnicked and played for awhile.

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I love the back shoulder detailing on all of Kate & James apparel!kateandjames2

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She is lucky enough to get to be a brand rep for our sweet friend (and blog sponsor) Jayme, who owns Kate & James! She’s wearing her Ello Love Pullover, Susie’s custom shorts, and Freshly Picked Moccs. I’m so jealous of her wardrobe, it hurts. ;-)

Hope you’ve all been having a great week! Come visit me on IG today and enter the awesome loop giveaway I’m in! $25 Paypal cash is up for grabs!!

XO – Samantha

Small Shop Love: Love Is Free

Good Morning! Thank you all for your kind words yesterday, and support while my husband underwent a minor procedure. Many of you have been asking what it was for, and although I’m not yet ready to answer questions, I will in a few weeks. To be quite honest, I can’t answer many questions because we still don’t know ourselves what’s going on, and yesterdays procedure was to hopefully clear up some of those unknowns for us. We live a very honest, open-book lifestyle, so you can bet that this won’t be the last time you hear me talk about it all…within his comfort level, of course. :-)

On with todays fun! I want to introduce you to my newest sponsor, Love Is Free! Shannon, the owner and creative mind behind the company, is a mom to her beautiful daughter Angelina who inspires her to create unique and modern children’s wear. Shannon is working to bring a childrens moccasin line to her shop in the coming weeks as well!

Many of you have already spied a few of these outfits over on my Instagram, as well as on @shoploveisfree and have been asking where you can score these awesome items – now you know!

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Love Is Free Arrow Leggings (similar), Kate & James “Ello Love” Raglan, Carly Megan Shop Scarf, Old Navy Vest, Target Boots

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Love is Free Black & Gold Arrow Headband, Carly Megan Bloomers, Little Big Dreamers Leg Warmers
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Grey Ham NYC “Milk De La Milk” Tee, Leiroux Knit Shoes

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Love Is Free Wild One Tee, Aruba Freshly Picked Moccs, Little Hip Squeaks Headband, Little Adi Co Harem Pants, Candy Kirby “Preppy Girl” Scarf
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Love Is Free Curly Hair Tee, Love Is Free Grey/White Stripe Headband, Candy Kirby Leggings

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Vonbon Scarf & Headband, Little Peeps Closet Skirt (detached from kitty cat “blouse”)SLIF7

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And this cutie loves her Love Is Free gear, and if you ask me, makes it look really stinkin’ cute!! She’s wearing the arrow leggings below, and the “Wild One” tee in the last photo.

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SLIF14Phew! I spent hours and hours pulling clothes, styling, and photographing all those outfits so you could see these rad pieces in action. Nothing’s worse than seeing clothes without any outfit inspiration, amiright?! Totally worth it if you enjoyed, and I hope you’ll go check out Love Is Free and support Shannon and her growing store.

XO – Samantha

Bitty Bows

Happy Hump Day, Friends!

My daughter knocked us out with a flu-like bug this weekend, but I’m finally turning a corner and feeling human again, and I have a really fun shop (and maybe a giveaway ;-) ) to share with you today!

Welcome, Bitty Bow Shop!

Here’s what Alexis, the owner and creative mama behind Bitty Bows, had to say about Bitty Bow Shop:

“Bitty Bow Shop started when my baby girl was 2 months old. I had so much fun making headbands to match her outfits, that I decided to take the plunge on Etsy. I am so happy that I took a chance! It is so rewarding to see Bitty Bow Shops headbands and clips on precious little ladies all over the world. I was so excited when I sold my first headband on Etsy. A year later, I still get just as excited when someone purchases something that I create. All of my bows are handmade and because of that, each one is unique. I love using shabby flowers, fold over elastic, bright colors, and classic/whimsy color combinations. I’m a Behavior Analyst by day, Mama to Sophie, Wife, Crafting Addict and Instagram Lover. I would love for you to follow along @bittybowshop! I’m so thankful for this little shop!”

You guys know me, I love supporting creative, hardworking mamas, especially when their business was born out of their love for their baby! When I met Alexis, it was a no-brainer that I wanted to share her and her awesome shop with all of you. Here are a few of my favorite headbands that she offers:

How darling are all of those? Bitty Bow Shop offers a huge variety of headbands, bows, & clips, and they are all incredible priced ($6.50 or less for any of the above featured headbands). These would be especially beautiful for newborn photos. Alexis hadn’t opened Bitty Bows when my little lady was a baby, but I remember loving putting her in bows and playing dressup, and if Bitty Bows had existed at that time you can bet I would have been a customer sooner!

Just for fun, here’s Camryn rocking some bows as a baby…

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Gahhhhhh!! Have some babies, and buy some bows people. The cuteness factor just goes off the charts!!

Alexis is generously offering a $50 shop credit to one of you, so head on over to my Instagram to enter. No reposting necessary – entry is VERY easy.

A very special thank you to you, Alexis, for teaming up with me to put this post together and allowing me to host such an awesome giveaway!!

XO – Samantha

Puddle Jumper

We had a little rain the last few days, and Camryn and I decided to put all those puddles in our yard to good use. What fun is being 3 if you’re not getting dirty? :-)

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puddlejumper7I love making these sweet memories with her, especially when I think of all the quality time that I won’t have just one-on-one with her in the coming months.

Her darling floral leggings are from Little Big Dreamers (available soon), and her boots are Hunter’s.

I hope your weekend was as full of fun and giggles as mine!!

XO – Samantha

Small Shop Love: FiFi Ruffles

I’m back with another small shop review for you – FiFi Riffles, a handmade boutique that was born after the birth of Kim’s first daughter Sophia (FiFi). After falling in love with designs by companies like Mud Pie, Kim decided to pursue her passion of owning her own retail space and creating a handmade line of girls clothing. In June 2013, Kim closed her brick and mortar store to focus her attention solely on raising FiFi and making her own line of clothing, as well as selling those items online on her website. Even in the few months that I’ve had the pleasure of working with Kim her designs and esthetics are changing, and it’s been so fun to watch her clothing evolve into what I consider more modern kid and less “ruffles”. She’s currently working on layering pieces for the fall/winter seasons, and separates, as you’ll see in my pictures.

My favorite item from her current collection is the black & white “paper bag skirt”, which you’ve probably already spotted all over my instagram feed. It literally goes with everything, and is so easy for Camryn to put on and off herself. It’s a staple, and did I mention it’s only TWELVE DOLLARS!! Run, don’t walk.

New Customers enjoy 20% off with coupon “Welcome20″

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We are also loving this rusty orange scalloped infinity scarf (long enough for mama or layered on littles) for fall, priced at just $14.fifiruffles6

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fifiruffles8Kim also sent us this darling asymmetrical dress, which is so fun for transitioning from summer to fall by layering a simple sweater, belts, and boots.

fifidressI hope you’ll all go check out more of what Kim has to offer, and give her some love on Instagram. :-)

I’ve had a ton of interest in the brown boots Camryn is wearing – they are from Target, and I bought them during a back to school BOGO sale for $12. Craziness, I know. I wish I had bought them in every size because they are amazing!!

Hope you’re all having a great week! We’ve almost survived to see the weekend – Hallelujah! Camryn has skipped naps all week…I think she’s trying to torture me. Send tranquilizers!!!

XO – Samantha

We Love MiniMoc

 

You all know my love for handmade shops, and today I’m bringing you another great one to check out. Meet Minimoc, an ethically sourced, handmade moc company out of Vancouver. I met Amanda after seeing her mocs featured on a fellow bloggers Instagram account, and first fell in love with the color range she offered. I looked into minimoc and was so impressed with her story, and the obvious care she put into her mocs, and knew I had to try them out myself.

I chose the Robin’s Egg suede mocs in size 1 (they are teeny tiny and ADORABLE) for Harper’s first pair of mocs. I knew when the box arrived that they were going to be amazing because the packaging was so nice, and I was oh-so-right. They are velvety soft, a beautiful sea blue color, and incredibly high quality.
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minimoc2All of the Minimoc moccasins feature a micro-suede sole for non-slip indoor and dry weather outdoor footwear. The sole is spongy, and soft, and is great for early walkers learning balance.

minimoc8Every moccasin has an elastic opening which makes putting them on/off easy for young toddlers who must do everything themselves. (I know all about that!) The elastic opening also prevents the mocs from slipping off even the squirmiest of feet.

minimoc9Aren’t they darling? Harper will be coming home from the hospital in these beauties. ;-) Here’s some fun outfit inspiration featuring Minimoc’s…

minimoc4Sweater: H&M // Bloomers: J Crew // Purse: Target

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minimoc7Sweater: H&M // Lemons Shirt: Kate & James Shop // Bloomers: J Crew // Spotted Fabric: Caitlin Wilson Textiles

Amanda currently offers 22 colors of moccasins (I’ve got my eye on ‘Piglet’), as well as leather bows, bowties, and apparel. Her moccasins are competitively priced, and you can buy with the confidence that she is sourcing from reputable tanneries with fairly treated employees.

XO – Samantha

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