Thursday, March 31, 2011

Thursday Thanks

Style Shout Out to Thursday and giving thanks.  Today as every day I am thankful for my family, friends, health and happiness.

And I am thankful...

For my daughter who inspired my blog and her version of Miley Cyrus'  Simple Song  (Click to listen)  that inspires me every time I hear it.

For everyone who has made donations of time and money to help the people of Japan.

For the comedy of Russell Brand, Jimmy Fallon and Jerry Seinfeld who always bring the laughter.

For Paul Reiser who is coming back to television in a new sitcom!

For the new healthy lifestyle cookbook that was written by Sheryl Crow and Chuck White.  "If It Makes You Healthy"

To all of you who read this blog and to all who have taken the time to follow here and on Twitter.

Happy Thursday!

My Style Shout Out Tip:  Today is a great day to organize your closet for Spring.  If you haven't worn something in over a year, donate it...while the piece may not be perfect for you, it may be perfect for someone else.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A Unique Brand

Style Shout Out to Russell Brand and his unique brand of funny!

Russell Brand on Today
It seems that during unsettling times the role that comedy plays becomes even more important.  There is something so therapeutic about having a good laugh!  And with so much unrest in the news today it makes sense that so many people tune in to shows like Late Night With Jimmy Fallon as it is so much better to finish the day on a good note.

For me it's all about comedy.  I guess it goes back to my childhood growing up in a house with three sisters where there was always a lot of laughter.  My Mom has a laugh that fills the room and my Dad reminds me of Jerry Seinfeld - a New Yorker with an amazing sense of comedic timing who knows how to deliver a joke and tell an amazing story.

A Great Book of Funny
I kid you not about my Dad's sense of humor.  When his company relocated from Manhattan to Dallas I was living in California.  After spending the majority of a career in New York adjusting to a slower paced environment is difficult.  The funniest was the day he called to tell me that his assistant said she couldn't understand him because he spoke too fast with that "New York accent."  My Dad's response, "I believe from history that New York was one of the thirteen original colonies, so who has the accent?"  Funny, right?  Well, maybe it's funny if you're the New Yorker in the room.

This morning while watching the Today show Meredith Vieira was interviewing Russell Brand who has an accent all his own.  When Brand talks you immediately know that he is English, you immediately know that it is him, and you immediately know he's funny.

Now while Russell's humor may not be everyone's brand of humor, being married to a Brit, I find him hilarious.  Not hilarious in a Seinfeld kind of way who just happens to be my favorite comedian, but hilarious in his own unique sort of Russell Brand way.

As Meredith Vieira put it, "he made his first splash in the US with his role in Forgetting Sarah Marshall now three years later he has not one, but two new movies coming out..."  Those movies are an animation film called "Hop" about a rabbit, voiced by Brand, who is next in line to be the Easter Bunny and a re-make of the comedy classic "Arthur" with him cast as the lovable billionaire who was originally brought to life by Dudley Moore in 1981.

Meredith Vieira Interviews Russell Brand
It is amazing to think that Brand has achieved such success in the States in such a short amount of time.  In response to Vieira's statement to his quick rise to stardom he replied, "I've had a series of very good opportunities and have behaved well,  plus I've had a shave and brushed my hair..."  If you have seen him interviewed before then you know that Brand is quick-witted and his responses can sometimes leave the interviewer blushing.

But Brand has chosen his movie roles very carefully and even though his comedy can be a little racy, his role in Bedtime Stories with Adam Sandler made him a household name even with the young ones.  I know this to be true because when we took our daughter to see "Despicable Me" the minute she heard his voice she blurted out,  "Awesome, Russell Brand is in this movie!"

We already have it on our calendars to see "Hop" this Friday.   My daughter has typed it in to my IPhone and therefore as she says, "It's in the IPhone, so it's definitely happening!"  I guess she, at the age of eight,  already has her own brand of humor.

From The Movie Hop
When Vieira asked about his wife, Katy Perry, Brand replied, "She's gorgeous!" And went on to talk about how marriage has changed him for the better.

So, whether you love him or you don't,  one thing we can probably agree on is that Russell is definitely a unique Brand of funny!  Today, go out and find your own brand of funny!

My Style Shout Out Tip:   Take time in your day to create the opportunities to have a laugh.  Last night while I was making my daughter Ovaltine she said, "Mom, why do they call it Ovaltine?"  I couldn't resist, "I know...the mug is round, the jar is round...they should call it Round-tine."  To which my little one replied, "It was funnier on Seinfeld!"  And even though she was right, we had a good laugh anyway!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Monique Lhullier Is A Treasure Everyday

Mandy Moore at the Golden Globes
Style Shout Out to this week's Tuesday Treasure Monique Lhuillier for designing fabulous!

Monique Lhullier's passion for fashion started when she was a little girl.  Reading about her recently it reminded me of my own eight year old daughter who has been talking about fashion and sketching since she was four.

Lhullier's passion took her to the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (FDIM) in Los Angeles where she developed an affinity for evening and wedding gown design.  In 1995 while looking for her own wedding dress Lhullier was surprised at the lack of "fashion" in the design of many bridal gowns.  So in 1996 she turned her passion into a business and launched her first bridal collection which was well received by buyers and fashion editors.

Monique Lhuliier has built a loyal following among Hollywood A-listers including Mandy Moore, Jennifer Lopez and Gwyneth Paltrow and her gowns can regularly be seen on the red carpet.  Carrie Underwood chose Lhullier when she married hockey great Mike Fisher and Reese Witherspoon wore a custom designed Lhullier wedding dress when she married entertainment agent Jim Toth this past weekend.

Recently I was looking for a dress for a very special occasion but unlike Reese Witherspoon searching for the ideal wedding dress, I was searching for the ideal communion dress for my daughter.  Having spent most of my time in the New York area and Southern California my style definitely reflects both of  those places.  When my daughter and I started shopping I thought it would be easy.  We were looking for a quality dress that was classic and simple with clean lines...a dress for a modern princess.  But we found the search more difficult than first anticipated.

The Back of the Dress
While talking to my sister about my dilemma there was a pause in the conversation.  She told me she would call me back in a few and when she did I could hear the excitement in her voice,  "I found it and it looks great!  It's a Monique Lhuliier!"

As it turns out the dress that my sister's flower girl wore at her wedding eleven years ago looks as good today as the day she walked down the aisle.  The dress that I was searching for wasn't in my local Neiman Marcus but in my sister's closet.

Every detail about the dress, from the design to the fabric to the buttons on the back, was perfect.  When my daughter tried on the dress she danced around and said she felt like a real princess.  And,  I will never forget the joy on her face as she said, "I love it's the most awesome dress...ever!"

Thank you Monique Lhullier for quality dresses that bring a smile to those fortunate enough to wear them, and for designs that are not just treasures on Tuesdays but treasures everyday!

My Style Shout Out Tip:  Whether you are looking for a dress, a handbag or shoes, quality is key!  My daughter's communion dress looks as good today as the day it was purchased.  And, if you are in the market for a beautiful bridesmaids dress check out ML Monique Lhullier at Nordstrom.

Monday, March 28, 2011

If It Makes You Healthy, It Will Make You Happy

Style Shout Out to Sheryl Crow and Chuck White for creating a cookbook full of healthy recipes that are kid friendly and easy to make.

On The Today Show
I have been a fan of Sheryl Crow since her debut CD "Tuesday Night Music Club."  Nine times out of ten when I pick up my guitar you can hear me singing at least one Sheryl Crow tune, usually "All I Wanna Do" or "If It Makes You Happy."

Sheryl Crow was on the Today Show this morning with Meredith Vieira and again in the 4th hour of Today with Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb.  But instead of holding her guitar and a pick, this nine-time Grammy winner was holding a frying pan and a spatula because her latest creative endeavor is not a CD as you would expect, but a cookbook that was written with chef Chuck White which is unexpected.

Meredith Vieira brought up Crow's battle with breast cancer as inspiration for the book, and she responded by saying that, "Like a lot of people who have been diagnosed you become sort of a scholar about your body... For me...It felt like I could be proactive in my own health..."

Hoda Kotb, Sheryl Crow, Chuck White
& Kathie Lee Gifford
Crow talked about how after her breast cancer diagnosis five years ago she met with a nutritionist to change the way she looked at food and how she ate.  When she went on tour in 2006 she took White with her because, not only is he an excellent chef, but he understands nutrition and healthy cuisine and she wanted to continue eating for wellness while on the road.   After the tour she brought him on full time and White said that it was Crow's idea to write a cookbook based on healthy eating.

In her own words Sheryl Crow admitted to Meredith Vieira that, "I'm not a great cook but I can make all the things in this cookbook."  The cookbook is filled with relatively simple recipes that are grouped by seasons which makes it easy to choose organic fresh foods that are in season.  According to Crow this is, "amazingly tasty food that you don't even know is healthy."

Crow talked about the recipes being appealing even to children saying, "Everything in the cookbook that I've made my son loves and it's hard to feed a four year old."  Being a Mom of an 8 year old I know that all kids go through phases of eating everything to phases of picking at everything.

So today I am heading to Barnes and Noble because if it makes you healthy, it will make you happy.

My Style Shout Out Tip:  My Nan used to say you are what you eat and I do believe that beauty comes from within.  So today pick up "If It Makes You Healthy" put on "If It Makes You Happy" and have some fun in the kitchen!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Sunday Shorts

Style Shout Out to Sunday and keeping it short.

The after effects of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan continue to be a major headline in the news, and probably will be for quite awhile.  I think it is so great how people really pull together in times of crisis.  So today I give a huge Style Shout Out to organizations like the American Red Cross and Global Giving who continue to help those in need, and to all of you that have made donations big and small.

As I explained to my daughter when she said she only had $10 to give, "Every little bit helps, so always remember that all donations makes a difference."

And, Happy Anniversary to the American Red Cross Dallas Area Chapter.  Thanks for your 100 years of service to the Dallas community!

My Style Shout Out Tip:   Donating your time is another worthwhile way to make a contribution!

Friday, March 25, 2011

It's All About Orange

at Neiman Marcus
Style Shout Out to Spring and all of the beautiful colors blooming inside and out.  And this season, inside your closet,  it's all about orange.

Love it or hate it, orange is everywhere this season.  Following trends I knew it was coming yet as I was organizing my closet yesterday I realized that I only own one piece of orange clothing.  It is my Jackie cardigan from J Crew and I have to admit that while I love it, I don't reach for it as often as my Michelle cardigan or my Splendid wraps that are more neutral shades of taupe and black.

Watching the Today show this morning Natalie Morales was interviewing Cindi Leive, the Editor-In-Chief of Glamour magazine.  The topic was Spring fashion trends which included the 70's look, hem lines dropping, and orange.  Orange played a major role on the runways of fashion week and while orange may seem a bit intimidating, with so many beautiful shades available finding the right shade to suit your skin tone should be relatively easy.

Tory Burch at Saks
So today may be the day I amp up the orange in my wardrobe.  I found the most fabulous Diane von Furstenberg dress at and like all DVF dresses it is simple in design but I just know from experience that it will be  flattering.  The other dress I found at is a classic sheath by Tory Burch.  I love Tory Burch for her bold use of color, and if you like clean lines I don't think this dress will disappoint.

at Bergdorf Goodman
Another great idea for adding a pop of orange without going all in, is by adding a scarf to your outfit. had a few great choices and I especially liked one by Diane von Furstenberg that had beautiful shades of coral.  This scarf would definitely bring a little black dress right into Spring.

So today go through your closet and while you are making a list of wardrobe items needed for Spring remember, it's all about orange!

My Style Shout Out Tip:   If you're not sure about taking the orange plunge, invite a friend along on your shopping expedition to give you that second opinion.  If you're going to a store like Nordstrom make an appointment with a personal shopper who can really help you find a look that is flattering for you.  And keep in mind that you can incorporate the trend in many different ways.  A tee shirt or a fun necklace are great options!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Thursday Thanks

Style Shout Out to Thursday.  It's a great time to say thanks!

Today, like every day, I am grateful for my family, friends, health and happiness.  I have always been a person who focuses on gratitude and grace.  Since the tragedy in Japan I find myself even more aware of the importance of gratitude than I was before.

Today I am thankful for:

Companies like Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman, Gilt and Gap who have made donating to the relief efforts in Japan so easy.  And to the American Red Cross and Global Giving for their continued efforts to help those people in need in Japan.

Jimmy Fallon who has brought back the fine art of writing thank you notes!

Spring...although it feels like Summer here today.

Jennifer Aniston's new fragrance, available at Sephora, that reminds me of lazy days at the beach in Southern California.

Laura Mercier's Tinted Moisturizer which makes me look like I had 10 hours of sleep when I didn't.

My daughter and her love of music which puts a smile on my face everyday.  I hope she put a smile on yours if you had the chance to read and listen to my "Gratitude" blog post.
Simple Song     (Click "Simple Song" to listen - not mobile enabled)

My Style Shout Out Tip:  Find something today that puts a smile on your face.  A smile and confidence are two of my favorite accessories.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Angie Harmon is Living Well

Style Shout Out to Angie Harmon who truly is living well.

Angie Harmon & Jason Sehorn
When I say that Angie Harmon is "living well" I don't mean because she relocated with her family to Charlotte to ensure her children have a "normal" childhood away from the spotlights of Hollywood, or because she is a talented actress and style icon, or because she is married to Jason Sehorn who is one of my favorite NY Giants of all time.

I say she is living well because she is also the Mom of three who is working diligently in conjunction with Hidden Valley and to help educate parents and arm them with the tools they need to make meal time healthier and more harmonious.

Harmon was on the Nate Berkus show, and one of the first questions that Nate asked her was, "What does living well mean to you and your family?"  Harmon's response, "I sort of have a motto, if you're not happy at home you're not happy anywhere you have to eat healthy..."

I totally agree with what she said and if you are arguing with your kids every day just to get them to eat their veggies it doesn't make for a happy meal time.  The segment was very informative and there were some fun and inventive ways to get kids to eat their veggies.  It is so important to teach our kids about making healthy choices because we are not with them when they navigate the school cafeteria or are at a friend's house.  The goal is to get kids to choose healthy on their own.

Studies show that kids will eat more veggies if they are involved in the process whether the process is growing the veggies, dipping the veggies or helping in the preparation of the food.

Personally I have experienced this with my daughter.  Since the time she was three she loves to be in the kitchen helping me cook.  Her favorite food is pasta and meatballs and sometimes it is difficult to get her to experiment with a new food.

Angie Harmon with Nate Berkus
Recently I was making stew and asked if she wanted to help.  She reminded me that she doesn't like stew but decided to help anyway.  When we sat down to dinner she actually said, "This stew I made is delicious!"  Did I correct her and say, "We made it together."  No, I didn't.  I was so happy she ate one bowl I thought that was worth the credit.

So today check out and introduce your family to some fun and healthy recipes!

Angie Harmon is living well, are you?

To get more information about healthy eating:

My Style Shout Out Tip:  Eat your veggies and fruit every day because beauty really does start on the inside!  So the next time you slather on your night cream and serum ask yourself, "Did I eat my veggies today? Am I Living Well?"

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Tuesday Treasure - A Sweet Song

Style Shout Out to Brenda Song and Revolve Clothing because we spent Spring Break with a Song!

Last week was Spring Break for many children.  My 8 year old ended up with bronchitis and so we spent a lot of time inside making sure that she got the rest she needed to get better.  If you are the Mom of school age kids then you know that means we played a lot of board games, did a lot of drawing, and watched a lot of Disney.

Revolve Clothing Boutique
My daughter is a fan of Disney especially The Suite Life and Wizards of Waverly Place.  As my daughter was happily watching Suite Life and laughing, I was happily watching with her and checking out Revolve Clothing.  I love a trip to their Melrose store when I am in LA so the next best thing when I am not in LA is their web site.  They have a great selection of designers and truly have something for everyone.

I also love how they have boutiques set up on their web site.  It's a great way to see the brands and items that celebrities and fashion insiders are currently loving and is a great place to find inspiration.  Brenda Song has a boutique on the Revolve site and I was amazed by her fashion savvy.  Having watched her for the past few years on The Suite Life I sometimes still think of her as a teenager when, in the words of my daughter, "She and Ashley Tisdale are all grown up now Mom, just like I'm growing up."

My daughter thought her Boutique was so cool and, that based on her fabulous picks, Brenda Song should think about fashion design as a second career.   She also thinks that Revolve needs to carry clothes for young girls preferably from 7 For All Mankind, Splendid and Ella Moss.

After we finished watching Brenda Song on The Suite Life and shopping at her Revolve boutique, my daughter said she was going to work on some music.  And I knew she was on the mend when she sat at her keyboard and started singing.  When your child starts feeling better that is the sweetest song.

My Style Shout Out Tip:  Pick up the April issue of People Style Watch and check out page 98 for an exclusive discount when you shop at Revolve Clothing's web site.  Who doesn't like a little discounted treasure when shopping?  Happy Tuesday!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Tee-rrific Tory!

Style Shout Out to Tory Burch for designing a terrific tee that gives back!

Thanks and Giving
St Jude
Thanks & Giving
I have to tell you that I am one of those people who loves shopping, and I love it even more if I am shopping for a good cause.   While Christmas shopping I always look for the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital "Thanks and Giving" logo.  This year several gifts were purchased at The Loft and Pottery Barn mainly because of their participation in the program.

In October you will find me at Saks purchasing their annual designer tee shirt, and at the Estee Lauder counter purchasing cosmetics to benefit breast cancer research.

Tory Burch Tee
Last night I was catching up on Twitter and came across a tweet from Tory Burch about a tee shirt to benefit the earthquake and tsunami relief efforts in Japan.  This tee is adorable and 100% of the proceeds of every Tee shirt sold will go to the American Red Cross.  How fabulous is that?  You can help others and look chic at the same time!

You can pre-order the Tee at the Tory Burch web site:,default,pd.html?dwvar_13112196_color=100&start=8&cgid=newarrivals-the-view

To find out more about the American Red Cross visit

My Style Shout Out Tip:  Helping others can really put a smile on your face.  And that smile and your confidence are two of the best accessories!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Sunday Shorts

Style Shout Out to Sunday and keeping it short.

Turning on the news this morning images and stories are still coming from Japan.  I can't imagine how long it will take to rebuild in a country where so many lives and landscapes have been affected.

Thanks to so many like Sandra Bullock, Gap, and American Idol who have made personal donations or have assisted with the donation effort.

If you would like to make a $10 donation to the American Red Cross you can text the word REDCROSS to 90999 and $10 will be added to your phone bill.

My Style Shout Out Tip:  It's never to early to starting talking about gratitude.  While my 8 year old has no idea of the extent of the damage in Japan she does understand that there was an earthquake that caused damage and that the people need help.  I have taken this opportunity as a teachable moment to reinforce the lessons of giving and gratitude.  Hopefully, these are lessons that she will always remember!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Dress Like A Princess!

Style Shout Out to Kate Middleton who dresses for the princess in all of us!

As always, I was watching the Today Show this morning enjoying a cup of Starbucks coffee, brewed at home but still delish.  Finally taking the time to read my April issue of Harper's Bazaar,  I came across a great article about Daniella Helayel who founded Issa which is one of Kate Middleton's favorite designers.  Daniella's story is a great one.  How can you not love a designer who started her label because she was looking for something to wear that she just couldn't find anywhere else?  I am a huge fan of determination and she really seems to have it.

While I was enjoying Bazaar,  Meredith Vieira was reporting from England where there is so much anticipation with the impending Royal Wedding.  It's amazing but it feels like only yesterday that Diana and Charles were married in a beautiful ceremony complete with a coach suited for Cinderella.  Who can forget the amazing train on Lady Diana's gown designed by David and Elizabeth Emanuel?  It was a dress that little girl's playing princess can only dream about, and there it was in real life.  It suited the time and the place and the Princess.

From Bazaar
The story on Today this morning highlighted where Kate and William will live in Wales while he completes his tour of duty with the military.  This simple village with such amazing beauty reminded me of the future princess herself.  There is no denying that Kate Middleton is a rising star in the world of fashion but I love that she, like our own First Lady Michelle Obama, has a unique sensibility about style that is in step with current times.  She seems just as comfortable in high end couture as she does in the blue Issa dress she wore when she and William announced their engagement, or the Nanette dress from Reiss that she wore for her royal engagement picture.  It is so amazing how a dress will sell out when a future princess wears the dress.

I love how Kate is choosing to wear clothes that so many other women can find attainable.  I found the cream Nanette dress at Reiss and am so happy that it is finally available in my size.  Thank you Kate Middleton for giving so many women the opportunity to dress like a princess.

My Style Shout Out Tip:  No matter what you are wearing, wear it with confidence because confidence is the best accessory!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Thursday's Thanks - A Little Green Goes A Long Way!

Style Shout Out to Thursday and being thankful.  I personally am thankful for family, friends, health and happiness.

And to...

The American Red Cross for their efforts in helping those in need and right now for all of their efforts to help Japan, and to all of you who have made donations so that this organization can continue their good work.

American Idol for they efforts in helping to raise money for the American Red Cross.  Idol will donate profits from ITunes downloads of the songs performed on the March 16th show to the Red Cross for Japan relief.

Gap, Inc for the contribution made to assist with humanitarian efforts.  The Gap Foundation made a donation to Global Giving's Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Relief Fund.  To see how you can help:

News correspondents like Ann Curry and Anderson Cooper who are on the ground in Japan delivering up to the minute news to keep us informed.

St Patrick who, as legend has it, was a humanitarian banishing snakes from Ireland, while giving us a fabulous reason to wear green.

So,today let's channel our inner humanitarian and give what we can to help those who are in dire need.  When my daughter pulled $5 out of her piggy bank the other day she said, "Mom I only have a little to donate."  And I replied, "Honey, a little green goes a long way."

Happy St Patrick's Day...

My Style Shout Out Tip:  Even if you are not Irish, today is a great excuse to wear a little green and give a little green!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Color Me InStyle

Style Shout Out to InStyle Magazine for inspiring me with their April issue's pop of color.

InStyle Magazine
For anyone within earshot of a TV over the past few days it is hard to escape the tragedy that is still unfolding in Japan.  The images brought to us by Ann Curry and Anderson Cooper are almost surreal which is why we watch a lot of Food Network,  Disney, American Idol or Stars hockey with my daughter and save the news for later.

While it is important to do what you can as far as donations to the Red Cross and prayers, it is also important to find the bright spots in your day, especially if you have little ones in the house.

One of my bright spots yesterday was sitting on the couch with my daughter who is sick with bronchitis and watching her sketch and draw pictures.  The bright spot was the picture drawing and not the bronchitis.  We just talked and laughed as I watched her create artwork using all of the bright colors of the rainbow.  Simple times and simple treasures.

When I ran out to get the mail there was another bright spot as I saw my April InStyle issue pink and blue sitting amongst a sea of black and white.  I can't tell you how something as simple as a brightly colored magazine cover can be an instant mood booster.  And who can't help but smile when you see Tina Fey - she is the definition of comedy!

I spent the next few hours with my daughter drawing and reading and smiling!  So many inspiring trends and colors for Spring.  I had a dress so similar to the cobalt blue Diane von Furstenberg dress on page 200 when I got my first job after college.  So true how things in fashion have a way of reinventing themselves every so many years.

If you don't subscribe to InStyle pick up this issue because it is filled with beautiful colors that will surely put a smile on your face.  Next to the Best of Beauty issue, this one is my favorite!

It even inspired me to re-organize my closet and bring those pops of color to the forefront so you can just Color Me InStyle!

My Style Shout Out Tip:  A Diane von Furstenberg dress is a real investment and the cobalt dress featured in the April issue is a timeless classic that can be dressed up or down.  The versatility of this dress is amazing.  I would pair it with a nude pump to elongate the leg and keep in mind there are many variations of "nude" so try to find the shade that best suits your skin tone.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Tuesday's Treasure - Make It Personal

Style Shout Out to Nate Berkus for making it easier to find the right jeans because, as most of you know, it can really be a pain in the butt.

Hudson Jeans - A Flattering Pocket
I was watching the Nate Berkus Show recently and Dannielle Kyrillos the Daily Candy Editor at Large was  talking about finding the right jeans for your body type.  You can go to the show's website to check out the information as it was very helpful.  I think many women have a difficult time finding the best pair of jeans.  Often times we are influenced by pictures of our favorite celebrities in magazines like People Style Watch or on web sites like Coolspotters.

But jeans are very personal and while you can draw inspiration from your favorite celebrities you really need to take the time to find what suits you best.  While shopping, keep in mind that sizes may vary from brand to brand.  So don't concentrate on the size, concentrate on the fit.

There are many stores like Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus that have complimentary personal shoppers ready to help you.  I think it is a great idea to take full advantage of their expertise.  In the long run this person can save you time, as they can make recommendations, and money, since the jeans you buy won't end up in the "things I bought but seldom wear pile."

My personal shopping experiences have always been positive and I am happy to say I currently have jeans in my closet suitably fit for any occasion that also fit well.  I love Hudson Jeans Carly straight legs because they look just as good rolled up with flats as they do with espadrilles or pumps.  Hudson also makes a Baby Bootcut that is a slimmer fit with a slight bootcut and again is great with flats or heels or boots.  There is also really something very flattering about the pocket on a Hudson Jean and there is no "saggy butt" when wearing this brand.  I have to admit I only started wearing Hudson recently but could kick myself in the butt for not having tried them on sooner.

7 For All Mankind makes a great bootcut jean which as the name implies looks great with boots.  My favorite wash is still the original New York Dark.  I have had a pair since 2004 and they look as good today as they did when they were under my Christmas tree.  These jeans have about a 34 inch inseam and if they are a bit long for you, many stores offer alterations.  Nordstrom's alterations are fast and free!  My recommendation is to wash the jeans first as they may shrink a bit, and then bring them back to be altered with the shoes you plan to wear them with most and remember to bring your receipt.

AG Jeans The Stilt
AG Jeans makes a skinny jean called The Stilt and it a great skinny for me because it is not tight on my calves.  The pair I purchased also had a 30 - 31 inch inseam which meant there was no need to have the jeans shortened and they look fab with flats or heels or tucked in boots.

And of course there are my Levis 518's which I go to when I am kicking around and want to be totally casual with my Converse but still look stylish.

So, today have some fun treasure hunting for your own jeans.  Make an appointment with a personal shopper as they can be the real treasure in your hunt, and can make it personal.

My Style Shout Out Tip: If you know what kind of jeans you are looking for or have a fair amount of time head to Nordstrom Rack as they always have a great selection of brands, styles and sizes.  I found a pair of Hudsons there and the price was a real treasure.  Loehmanns, Last Call by Neiman Marcus, and Saks Off 5th also offer some fabulous treasure hunting!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Style Me, Style Watch

Style Shout Out to People Style Watch Magazine for the fun and interactive event that is happening at a mall near you, and for publishing a great magazine filled with fabulous style tips.

People Style Watch Closet
Yesterday I ran to the mall to do a quick errand.  I was returning a tee shirt to Justice that my daughter "wasn't feeling anymore!"  Sometimes, even at eight things look better in the store than they do in your own closet.  After stopping at Neiman Marcus to say hi to Laura in women's shoes and to make an appointment to look for a Communion dress for my daughter I headed into the mall.

The first thing I noticed was an enormous closet-style display set up in the center of the mall.  It turns out People Style Watch Magazine was having a "Celebrity Stylist" Spring Style event.  The event will take place every weekend in March and really is a great way to check out the trends for Spring from clothes to accessories.  Our event had a stylist on hand to help you find your own personal look so when you continue your shopping and get your purchases home you will "still be feeling it" two weeks later.  There was even a Clinique make-up artisit ready to give you a fresh Springtime make-over.
Now I am a big fan of People Style Watch Magazine for many reasons.  One being that my daughter and I can check out the magazine together because compared to other fashion magazines the ads are relatively tame and I don't have to do much parental editing before we read.

Jennifer Aniston
I also love how they feature fashion and beauty and celebrities.  It's always fun to see something you bought that a celebrity is wearing.  My daughter and I were looking at the March issue and there was an article called 360 Denim and my daughter said, "Mom Jennifer Aniston is wearing your Hudson Jeans and your Stuart Weitzman shoes. She has good taste like you!"  And I think it's great how the magazine features clothes and accessories in "The Look For Less" so if you don't want to spend hundreds for a pair of Gucci shoes, you can see a similar shoe that gives you a similar look.  

So definitely check out your local mall and make an appointment to play in the Style Watch closet.  I am making my appointment for next weekend and am taking my daughter with me so we can have some fun with fashion.  

Thanks People Style Watch for the opportunity to Style Me, Style Watch!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Sunday Shorts

Style Shout Out to Sunday and keeping it short.

Today I am watching Meet The Press and CNN before my daughter wakes up.  The images coming from Japan are so horrific and more than any eight year old should have to view, especially since she knows that her cousins are scheduled to relocate there in the next few months and I don't want her to worry.

But you can't shield children from everything and she knows that a major earthquake and tsunami hit Japan and there was a lot of damage to the country.  She asked me if Japan was broken and how will it get fixed?  Kids really do ask some amazing questions.  My response was, "Sometimes when people act alone we are small, but when we band together we are big and can accomplish anything."

I love a "light bulb" moment , "It's like when you told me there would be times I would have to stand up for myself  even if no one stood up with me.  But then on the playground I stood up to a mean girl, and then my friends stood up with me."

When my daughter asked me who was standing up for Japan, I explained that in times of crisis people from all over the world find ways to put aside differences to help.  We talked about how the American Red Cross is an amazing organization that helps people when tragedy strikes and how they rely on donations so they can continue their good work.  I watched her walk to her piggy bank and take out five dollars,  "Here you go Mom, you should get this to the Red Cross.  If lot's of people even give a small amount it will be big."

So if you would like to make a $10 donation to the American Red Cross text the word REDCROSS to 90999 and $10 will be added to your phone bill.

It may seem like a small amount but it definitely adds up to big very quickly.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Gratitude - A Simple Song!

Style Shout Out to Gratitude - it really is such a Simple Song!

Too often we go through the day not stopping to take that extra minute to say thank you whether it's to our hubby, kids, or the girl who took our Starbucks order.  Let's face it whether you are a denim powerhouse like Hudson Jeans with creative director Ben Taverniti launching a new line, an actress like Jennifer Aniston launching a new perfume, or a Mom like me who is driving to school and to music lessons,we are all extremely busy with the "Busy-ness" of our day.

Then you wake up on a normal Friday and your routine starts...breakfast for the family, lunch made, daughter driven to school, puppy fed, coffee made and it's time to take an hour to check in with my favorite online newspapers and the Today Show. 

This morning the top story was the tsunami that hit Japan.  The concerned looks on the faces of Ann Curry and Meredith Vieira were heart-wrenching as they relayed the news of this tragedy.  The pictures for me were too horrific for words and my heart immediately went out to the victims and their families.

My sister's family will soon be moving there for work.  As I watched the images on the screen I could only say a quick "thank you" that they returned from a house hunting trip this past Tuesday and were not in Japan when nature reared her ugly head.

So as I said my thank you I realized how important it is to stop even on the busiest of days to show appreciation and gratitude.  I know today is not Thursday but I'm saying a few thank you's anyway...

To my family and friends for making this journey a fun and laughter-filled adventure.

To my daughter who inspired this blog site and today's blog as I heard her playing Miley Cyrus' Simple Song and thought about how sometimes we just have to get back to "simple" which took me to gratitude.

To my tech-savvy hubby for creating the blog site and giving me a forum for my voice.

To all of the celebrities who donate their time for worthwhile causes and who no doubt will come together to support the many victims of this tsunami.

And to fate that brought members of my family home safely.

So today as you go about your day, stop and take a minute to use your voice to sing a song of gratitude and say thank you.  One voice, one song.  It's a Simple Song but the message is very strong!

Simple Song     (Click "Simple Song" to listen - not mobile enabled)

My Style Shout Out Tip:  While confidence is the best accessory, add a little gratitude for a truly stylish and winning look!  Attitude really is everything.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Thanks On Thursday

Style Shout Out to Thursday and, as always, so many reasons to say thanks!

In addition to being thankful for my family, friends, health and happiness, today I am thankful for:

Everyone who follows the blog and follows on Twitter! And to Brenda Song for continuing to be a good role model for girls and because my daughter said that I have always been a "cool" Mom but this follow makes me even cooler.  Also, love your Revolve Clothing Boutique!

Colbie Caillat, Sheryl Crow, Bon Jovi and Keith Urban for creating awesome music that strikes a chord and is the soundtrack to my day!

Selena Gomez, Justin Bieber, Miley Cyrus/Hannah Montana and Colbie Caillat for creating music that inspires my daughter in her musical journey.

Hudson Jeans and their Creative Director Ben Taverniti for creating jeans that are flattering and comfortable - no easy feat.  And for being a company that is socially responsible.  I loved their fundraising efforts on behalf of the American Heart Association in February.

Isaac Mizrahi, Shaun Kearney of Cynthia Steffe, Frida Giannini of Gucci and Christopher Bailey of Burberry for creating beauty in fashion.

Jimmy FallonSeth Meyers, and Ellen DeGeneres for creating comedy that brings so much laughter!   And speaking of laughs, did you see Jennifer Aniston's You Tube video for Smartwater?

The positivity on American Idol this season!  Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler bring industry experience and a fresh perspective to the party that is Idol.  Randy Jackson continues to impart his wisdom with Ryan Seacrest continuing in his role as personable host!  No Idol mention would be complete without talking about Jimmy Iovine of Interscope.  I hope these contestants know how lucky they are to get the opportunity to work with an industry legend!

So go make your own list and Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

This Is Your Brain On Shopping!

Style Shout Out to Jean Chatzky author of "Money 911" and Today Show contributor for her financial savvy and style.

Jean Chatzky on The Today Show
Yesterday when I sat down to write about the Jean Chatzky segment I had seen on the Today Show my thoughts followed a tune all their own.  The great thing about writing is that you can continue your thoughts any time.  There is no wrong time to write.  So today I have driven my daughter to school, fed the puppy, made my coffee and after checking in with the New York Post, LA TimesFashion Wrap Up and Style Republic I am ready to continue my thoughts from yesterday.

Now I know that maybe you wouldn't place a financial mind like Jean Chatzky in a blog about style but first of all I think that Chatzky has impeccable style and second she always has the best and most useful financial information.  The Today Show is known for having some wonderful contributors and besides Jean Chatzky, Dr. Michele Borba has the most relevant information for parents and Bobbie Thomas always brings something stylish to buzz about and it is especially fun when she is on with Kathie Lee and Hoda.

What intrigued me about Chatzky's segment was that it involved how your brain works when you are shopping, especially when items are on sale.  She spoke about the battle in your brain between pleasure and pain and how when you see an item on sale the pain center eases which means it is easier for you to make that purchase.  This explains why it is so easy to over spend when there is a sale, and it also explains why we sometimes experience buyer's remorse.

Hudson Jeans
My hubby says knowledge is power.  So if you are equipped with this information going into the store, you won't feel bad on your way out of the store.  According to Chatzky the key questions to ask yourself before you make your purchase are: "Do I need this?" and, "Where would I put it?"  Perhaps the best question when you are deciding on an item that is on sale, and the one I always ask myself is, "Would I buy it if it was full price?"  If the answer is "no" then walk away, but if you find yourself continually gravitating toward an item hoping it will go on sale,  buy it when it does go on sale.  Chatzky's advice to avoid buying on impulse is wise, but sometimes this is easier said than done.

Even the most savvy shoppers, me included, sometimes buy on a whim.  This Winter I bought some boots on impulse.  I had seen them online but couldn't find my size.  When I saw them in the store I was on the fence but when the sales associate said he couldn't hold them and they were the very last pair I pulled out my wallet.  The boots were great but when I got them home I realized they weren't as versatile as I had hoped, and so I returned them the next day.  My story did have a happy boot ending because that is the day I wandered into the Stuart Weitzman store and found the fabulous Linear boots that I had been looking at for a few months.  The best part was that they had my size and they were on sale!

Another great tip from the Today Show was that you should not try on the clothing if you are the least bit uncertain about the item.  According to Chatzsky, "There is a Psychological Phenomenon called Loss Aversion - as much as we  really like getting something we hate losing that thing even more."  So Chatzky said, "Once you try it on your brain basically takes owenership of it."    Then, if you don't buy it your brain feels this as a loss and seriously, who wants to feel bad while shopping?

Chan Luu Bracelet from Gilt
The last piece of advice is to steer clear of final sales unless you truly love the item.  I have found fab items at J Crew, Loft, Piperlime and Gilt that were final sale but they are pieces I knew would work with my wardrobe and therefore no buyer's remorse.  I mean where else but Gilt could you find a deal on a Chan Luu bracelet?

And lastly before you head out to do a little Spring shopping, remember to use cash not credit or debit cards because it truly is harder to part with those actual bills, especially if they are big bills.  Credit cards and especially deferred payments make the purchase seem less real and therefore more pleasure in your brain and less pain which could lead to spending more than you really want to spend.

So keep Chatzky's helpful tips in mind and have a pleasant shopping day!  Who knew there was so much psychology to a simple shopping trip.  Having worked in marketing, the advertising executives understand how to position products because they know that "This is your brain on shopping!"
Burberry Glasses 

My Style Shout Out Tip:  If you are looking for fab finds check out Nordstrom Rack, Loehmanns (we don't have one here but fingers crossed), Neiman Marcus Last Call, and Saks Off 5th!  In the past few weeks at Nordstrom Rack alone I have found Burberry Sunglasses, Hudson Jeans, 7 For All Mankind Jeans, Harajuku Lovers tees for my daughter and yesterday, I kid you not, they had the most beautiful Burberry shorts, dresses and tops...sadly I did not have to put any of Jean Chatzky's expert advice to use because they were already sold out in my size!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Tuesday Treasure - Musical Memories

Style Shout Out to the music that is my treasure.

Joe Jonas giving Claire a high 5 - Jonas Brothers Show
I seriously sat down this morning to write about something very interesting that Jean Chatzky was talking about on the Today Show last week.  Somehow in thinking about the rhythm of my day my thoughts turned to music and how much I consider it a treasure and with that one thought my beat changed.

If you know me, then you know how much I love music. I can't imagine going through the day without it.  Since the first time I picked up a guitar at the age of 10 I have been amazed by what an important role music plays in our lives every day.  Music can be a reminder of milestones as well as the little moments that are just as important.  I find it incredible that the first 10 to 20 seconds of a song can somehow bring me right back to a time and a place like nothing else can - not even a photograph.

My hubby and I were watching Megamind with our daughter on Sunday and the first few bars of ELO's "Mr Blue Sky" came wafting through our speakers.  Before a lyric was sung I was brought back to New Jersey and the day my Dad searched record stores in New York City at lunch and brought home my first ELO album.  Too big to fit in his briefcase,  I was so impressed that the album made it home without a scratch.  I played that record over and over until the vinyl had actual grooves.

Fisherman's at San Clemente Pier
I met my hubby through music as we were both aspiring musicians in California and were introduced by a mutual friend.  His band played mostly originals but every once in a while they would cover a song like U2's "I Will Follow" and every time I hear that song I am magically transported to the San Clemente pier where we played.

My 8 year old is growing up with even more music than I did.  I guess that is inevitable.  When she was a baby I can't tell you how many times we sang and danced her to sleep to Sheryl Crow's "Light In Your Eyes" and Rod Stewart's version of "It Had To Be You" which just happens to be our wedding song - well, the Harry Connick version!

My daughter could sing before she could talk and I've never seen a child take to the drums so quickly - until I saw Never Say Never.  I think her drum skills and rhythm come from the fact that I played drums when I was pregnant.  My doctor, however, says there is no scientific evidence or data to support my theory but that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Selena Gomez in Concert
When I think of my happiest memories there is always a song to mark the occasion.  My daughter recently performed "Magic" by Selena Gomez in her second music school showcase.  It was such a special moment because she's only been playing keyboard for a few months and it also reminded me of how I used to  play the original version by Pilot.

Colbie Caillat Breakthrough
Little moments for me are everywhere. They are made up of the songs my daughter loves singing on the way to school which include Colbie Caillat's "Falling For You",  Hannah Montana's "Party In The USA" and No Doubt's "Sunday Morning" and every time I hear these songs I will be forever reminded of second grade.  The other day while we were playing in our studio she recorded covers of "Party In The USA" and "Simple Song" and for me there were a lot of perfect little moments that made up a perfect day.

Musical moments are every where.  Last week I heard a little girl say, "Yay Me" in Nordstrom when her Mom was buying her new shoes.  I immediately pictured my daughter at age 5 sitting on the couch with me watching Brenda Song as London Tipton on the Suite Life of Zack and Cody singing, "London Tipton's really great....Yay me".

And yesterday we heard Jennifer Lopez singing "Let's Get Loud" and my daughter said, "Mom remember when we went to the Mavs game and they kept playing that song.  Love it!"  Yes, I do love it too, the song and memory.

Jack Lawless' Drum Stick
You see, music is like a date-stamp...marking time and making memories.  Whether it's the day my daughter got a high-five from Joe Jonas and a drum stick from Jack Lawless at a Friends and Family concert at Cowboys Stadium or the day she walked on stage for the first time at age seven and played "Stop & Erase" by Selena Gomez...I have those memories musically marked and I am happy to say that she does too!

So today, find a song and as Steven Tyler would say on American Idol, "Sing like no one is looking!"  Have some fun, make your own memories and find your treasure.

Happy Tuesday!  Happy Treasures!

My Style Shout Out Tuesday Tip - To get your own California look I like a great pair of jeans like J Brand 910 skinnies tucked in boots - you know I'm going for my favorite Stuart Weitzman boots - and a fabulous leather jacket.  This look calls for an LNA white or black tee, some Ippolita gold bangles and a fab scarf...again you know I'm partial to Burberry!

Monday, March 7, 2011

There's Something About Alex & The Aniston Effect!

Style Shout Out to Stuart Weitzman for Alex!

Jennifer Aniston in
Stuart Weitzman Alex
Last year as I was flipping through the pages of a fashion magazine I came across a picture of Jennifer Aniston wearing the most adorable espadrilles.  Later that week I saw Aniston featured in the "I Really Love My..." article in People Style Watch and it turns out those adorable shoes were Stuart Weitzman's Alex wedge and they looked as cute with shorts as they did with pants.

When I was at Saks that afternoon, before heading to carpool, I tried on the Alex.  It was adorable and unexpectedly comfy for such a high wedge.  As much as I loved them I told the sales associate that I wanted to think it over and not make a rush decision.  He told me they were going fast because of Jennifer Aniston wearing them all the time.  But having worked in marketing and sales I wasn't falling for that line, I was going to think before I purchased.  After all, could Jennifer Aniston really have that much of an effect on the sale of a shoe?

Well, it turns out he wasn't handing me a line about what I now call the "Aniston Effect"...when I went back to Saks the next day my shoes were gone.  Needless to say, by the time I checked Nordstrom, Saks, Neiman Marcus, and Bloomingdales in store and online they were sold out of the shoe in my size.  It was impossible to find them anywhere online, Zappos and Stuart Weitzman included.  I find the power of the Aniston Effect and the effect of celebrity in general to be amazing.  I always tell my daughter that you shouldn't buy something solely because someone famous wears it but it is okay to take inspiration and buy it if you love it.

So regarding the Alex, I did what many style conscious women would have done in my situation where there are some very cute and very fabulous shoes at stake.  I ordered the shoes a size up  hoping that maybe they would run small.  After waiting 6 long days my shoes finally arrived thanks to UPS.  I opened the box with as much anticipation and excitement as my daughter on Christmas morning but sadly this shoe ran true to size and I had to tuck them neatly back into their sassy purple box and take them back to Nordstrom.

Stuart Wetizman Alex
I promised myself that if Stuart Weitzman introduced this shoe again I wouldn't hesitate - I would purchase it when I could find it in my size and color.  My sassy purple box arrived from Nordstrom recently and I am happy to say they are the correct size and are the perfect versatile wedge for me.

So if you are in the market for a cute and comfy wedge for Spring and Summer you may not have to look any further than Alex.  But don't buy this shoe because Jennifer Aniston is photographed in them, or because I love them only if you love them, and don't hesitate or you may be waiting until next Spring to get your sassy purple box.  I've seen Jennifer Aniston photographed in them recently and you know the effect she has on the sales of this shoe!

My Style Shout Out Tip - There's something about Alex with my Hudson Jeans Carly Straight leg.  Roll up the jeans, white tee, long necklace or scarf (I love my Burberry)...and you are all set!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Sunday's Shorts

Style Shout Out to Sunday and keeping it short.

To Ben & Jerry for creating an ice cream flavor for Jimmy Fallon that is so delicious.

To Colbie Caillat and Justin Young for creating music that my daughter and I both agree on.

To Stuart Weitzman for creating Alex.  This is an amazingly stylish and comfy wedge for the warm weather.

To Scooter Braun, Usher, and LA Reid for creating a positive environment where Justin Bieber can continue to grow and create music.  Never Say Never is an excellent documentary for people of all ages.  Go see it and be inspired to create your own positivity!

To the Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation for creating hope for those when they need it most!

To Hudson Jeans for creating the Carly Straight Leg.  You seriously need to try these on and you too will fall in love with them!

Style Shout Out Tip - Roll up your Carly straight leg jeans and wear them with your Alex wedges to be seriously fab!

Happy Sunday!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Express Yourself

Style Shout Out to 7 For All Mankind and Polyvore for giving you a fashionably fun way to Express Yourself this Spring!

Jennifer Aniston in
Paul Smith Sunglasses
Brenda Song
at Susan G Komen Race
Having grown up with a stylish Mom, I know a lot about self-expression through fashion.  I still remember buying my first Seventeen Magazine when I was 13 and pouring through the pages filled with wide leg jeans and bohemian inspired tops.  My Dad says there is a fashion cycle where trends are reinterpreted and reintroduced every so many years.  Looking through recent issues of InStyle, People Style Watch, and Vogue and walking through Neiman Marcus and Nordstrom yesterday, my Dad's words ring true with the flared leg jean trend for Spring.

But while I am a person who loves following trends from a marketing perspective, I am not a person who buys into all trends.  I tend to use them as an inspiration for my own look and for me that's what fashion is all about.  Fashion is finding what works for you, and knowing that what works for someone else may not work for you.  Two great examples of women who have a strong fashion sense of self in my opinion are Jennifer Aniston and Jennifer Lopez who both play up their strengths and look in style without following every trend.

Selena Gomez
in concert
7 Jeans
Having an 8 year old daughter I find myself talking about this subject a lot.  As we watch Disney together it gives me a great opportunity to talk with her about fashion choices and things that are age appropriate.  She is a big fan of Brenda Song from the Suite Life but as my daughter says, "London's fashion is fun to watch but I couldn't pull that off in 2nd grade."  But what she has learned is that she can pull off taking cues from the colors that her favorite characters and actresses wear and she can incorporate these into her own look.

So you see I do believe that self-expression through fashion starts at a young age and I also believe that the earlier girls are able to express themselves the more confident they will be in their own skin as they mature into teens and young adults.  And let's face it, confidence is the best fashion accessory.

Jennifer Lopez on
Extra at The Grove LA
Now through March 17th you can go to 7's Facebook page and use the Polyvore mini-editor to create fantastic Spring looks.  Publish your look to the gallery for a chance to win a $1000 7 For All Mankind gift card.  If you have a daughter let her have some fun with it too!  And remember to include something fabulous from 7 For All Mankind into your look!

So thanks to 7 For All Mankind and Polyvore everyone has a chance to express themselves by stepping into the shoes of stylist.  My daughter and I are drawing inspiration from our style icons.  I am personally channeling Bobbie Thomas, Jennifer Aniston & J Lo for this contest and my daughter says she is channeling Brenda Song and Selena Gomez.

So you should channel your inner stylist and head to 7 For All Mankind's facebook page and ...EXPRESS YOURSELF!