Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Good Finds & Weekend Fun

Here are some good finds that I wanted to share - that I've either purchased already or have on my list. I NEED to chill with this!!! Hope you enjoy! :)
$18 Rustic Whitewashed Jewelry Hanger - Find it here. I tried shoving strategically placed nails into my wall and it looked too messy so I pulled them out. Now I need something to cover the holes, plus it's like a piece of functional  art :)
I've always loved gold hoops. These are 14k gold filled with a cool hammered look. Also, they are light, so even though they are 2" they won't be too JLo. They are $38 plus shipping. (Purchased, yay)
I really want this so bad. I love the lighter wood, it's a little more modern rustic than just country. So pretty. I'd like to try and make it as a project on a weekend day, but it just seems like an ordeal to try and find round wood slices, the wood frame, the wood backing - mainly it's a wood issue. And in NYC this just seems harder. It's $100 here. 
I've always been in love with Black and White photography and I especially love scenes like this, with amazing lighting. even though the room is abandoned and old, I think it looks so cozy, like it could be in an old charming country house outside Nashville or something. My dream would be to fix up a perfect little country cottage. I would love looking at this photo in my room, it just gives me a good feeling. That's the point of photography anyways right? To give you some kind of feeling? On that note, I kind of think that's the point of everything. Anyways, this photo in the 11x14 version that I would want is $35 on Etsy. I would get it now except that I'd need to have it matted and framed, and the framing part is what gets insanely expensive. I'll save this one for a later date, but I love it.
I think this is an AMAZZZZing table lamp. I can't get over it. I love the balance of the translucent light up bubbles combined with the bronzed base. It comes from Tel Aviv, and it's funny because literally half the jewelry and other pieces I love on Etsy are from Israel. There is such a distinct design to their art, that I can't put my finger on. It's like a touch of whimsy or something. This looks like it should be WAY more than its $150 price tag, in my opinion. It's also a decent size - a little over a foot in height.

So charming, and it would cast an INSANE reflection on your ceiling. A great conversation piece.
This druzy necklace is 24k coated over sterling silver, and so beautiful with the rainbow sparkles. It's $60, but best, NO SHIPPING! Find it here. 
Another thing I found this weekend were these awesome rings at the Brooklyn Flea Market in Ft. Greene. I went there with my brother and it only took like 30 minutes from the East Village - welp, it took like 45 to get back because of that elusive damn Ghost train, but not a big deal.
Isn't this like straight Game of Thrones!? I bought the sword, but I thought the wolfy was a little too much, plus it was too big, but still pretty cool. Only $15 for the brass ring! (I think it's brass.) 
I found this guy (below, left) on Etsy and it's cool because you can inscribe your own message on the leather band. I had "In the Midst of Winter I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer" printed because I love the quote. It's pretty inspiring. And hopefully I will be invincible this summer:) $18 on Etsy here. The baby skull bracelet on the left has a teeny rose gold skull and I LOVE it. Got it here for only $12!

Now for the rest of my weekend - it really felt so long...
Went to the Mondrian Rooftop Bar on Sunday with my friend Marina - amazing 360 degree view of the city and it was a beautiful day. We went there for more drinks after a tasty and booze filled brunch at Ken & Cook on Kenmare Street. All you can drink for $40. And we drank all we could.
Day turned into night, and night turned into us sitting IN this flowerpot to take a picture. The downstairs at the Mondrian is my favorite. It's like a secret garden + wedding - with the outside swing and lights and everything. Very pretty.
The day before that (on Saturday) I had an awesome day with my brother - that's the day I went to Brooklyn Flea Market. We started there, feasted on Bratwursts and looked at all the vintage stuff and then headed over to Bedford Street in Williamsburg to stroll around there and have another lunch/dinner. I actually am still a little confused by the prices at the Brooklyn Flea Market though - I have to say I think some of the vendors might be confused and think they are actually selling NEW stuff?? Look, I know they have to rent out their space and so they (I'm sure) factor that cost into the selling price of their items, but it IS a FLEA MARKET and not that I've been to more than like 3, but I do think it is very commonplace to bargain with customers. I found these little iron dear antler heads that would've been cool if I nailed them to an old piece of reclaimed wood and made it into a jewelry hanger, but thanks to the unfriendly seller who offered me ONE DOLLAR off $44, I instead left the dear heads on her little broken table and bought something cooler on Etsy for half the price, and 1/8th of the effort. I asked the lady if she could do like, at least $40, which I still think would have been overpriced considering that I would still have to actually create the project I wanted, so I'd have to buy other shit to attach it with AND worst of all, go to home depot (that place is my least favorite store in the world), but she just wouldn't budge on the price, and she definitely felt no remorse. I mean, isn't selling something for $4 cheaper better than selling nothing at all? I guess to each her own.

It was really cool to look at all the items, especially the vintage jewelry and old wooden boxes and home stuff.
Ft. Greene was really pretty too, nice to see a new neighborhood in Brooklyn. 
So after we went back to Williamsburg and strolled into some of the stores there - such a lively street. The best part was that they blocked off most of the street from cars and laid sections of grass down, so you literally could just lay down in the street and hang out. I love Williamsburg because I feel like I can walk slower there than in Manhattan, I guess because there are less cars/taxis/etc, but this just made it even better.

OK, this is the 2nd image I've posted on my blog that gets smooshed down - I don't understand it. Anyways, it gives you an idea of how cool the chunks of grass everywhere were.
After we lunched at a place called "The Bedford" where we ate oysters and had some refreshing summer beers.

Hi, that's me. 

This is my younger brother, Zach.
This was our little table on the side. I don't care that much about showing you the table. What I wanted to  show was this girl's amazing tie dye head. Check, that, out. I said to my brother while we were walking around "God I need to dress weirder here." I literally felt out of place for having one color hair. haha. No I didn't. :)
 And so that post just turned into a weekend recap, but I thought since I actually took photos for once, and because it was such a good weekend, I should just post them. I love looking at other peoples' adventures and I think anything visual (mainly photos) makes reading just so much more fun.

Friday, June 7, 2013

P.Etsy, I Love You.

OMG, I just found the most amazing thing on Etsy that 100% I will buy within the hour. LOOK at this. It's a glowing paper house nightlight made out of bamboo, LED lights and mini trees. It's incredibly cute. And best, it has images of NYC that shines through when it's lit.
Find it here on Etsy. It's $57.50.
When it's off it is just a perfectly cute white house, that would look amazing sitting on a dark wood desk or shelf. I am so obsessed with mini things. For some reason I never had a dollhouse growing up, but I literally still want one. I just love miniature versions of real things (ok, not ALL things, but most). Like for example, every year when I would go to The Breakers in Palm Beach as a kid, I'd steal the mini ketchup bottles and jam jars at brunch. I just needed them. I would never even open them, but I liked holding on to them and lining them up. I also have a section for my sample-sized makeup and skin care in my makeup drawer, and I keep it separate mainly because I like looking at how cute and small it is. I bought that mini jar of vaseline not because I use vaseline (I actually don't really know what vaseline is designed for), but I bought it because it's like 1/20th of the normal bottle which I love. To be honest, I wish I still had my set of polly pockets. This is just SO COOL. And the fact that it lights up and could illuminate a dark little nook in your room/on a desk or dresser would make it so cozy.

I assume this is the view that inspired the house with its images? 

Wouldn't this be amazing if you could send in pics of your own house and the artist could construct a mini version for you? These are the artists, and how awesome, they are siblings.

Another similar version here for $52.50.

Another one of my all time favorite recent Etsy purchases is this chunky 18k gold plated chain link necklace that I bought a few weeks back. I love it so much that I just went back for more yesterday and purchased another larger and even chunkier version of what I already had. I was so happy with the quality and price, and it reminded me of a few necklaces I don't even like as much and are pricier - like this Kenneth Jay Lane or this version by 1AR at Saks.
So this is the one that I just purchased above - my latest and largest one. It's $32, and you can have it made larger if you'd like. The designer is super nice and very helpful,  I had a few convos with her via message on Etsy.
You could also get a smaller one which would be an awesome bracelet if your wrist can handle it.
 I was thinking I could wear the two necklaces together, but we shall see. Either way I can't wait to get it. I don't think I was really inspired by any celebs for this one, but I do see they are enjoying the chain link necklaces as well.

Anyways, I love how this thick chain can spice up skinny jeans and a muscle t or dark tank, and can also be worn with a collared or dressier shirt for work. The best part is this necklace is LITERALLY $19, AND it is 18k gold plated, so the color is amazing. And even better against a bit of tanned skin in the summer.
 (On another note, please note Kim's "KW" earrings... how.. charming.)

Everyone's rockin the chain.

Find the smaller one (above) that I already have here. It's $19 and I've worn it like 10 times already, but probably more. 

If you want to check out other goods in the store go here.  I researched these gold chains, looking for the perfect one that was good quality (gold plated) with a cool thick design and this is hands down my favorite one, and it just happens to be at a great price. Love when that happens.
If you are interested in buying this make sure to write "Chic Redneck" in the notes when you purchase. (If there are enough orders the seller was nice enough to say she'd do a giveaway :)

PS. Happy Blonde Appreciate Month to my dearest blondes, Shelly & Sarah. This is a very important time for us, and I hope that we can celebrate this for many (fuck that) ALL of our years to come.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Consumer Behavior

I'm at it again! I have to say that I have a bit of an obsession with organizing my belongings, and living in NYC has only made it worse, or better, in my opinion. Literally from the moment I got off the subway today in Rockefeller Center this morning on my way to work, all I could think about is how I can't wait to get home and get more organized. I came up with a few ideas that I'm going to apply to cleaning my space/making it a SHRINE, and then a few more rules to dictate my future shopping habits.


1. If the weather today was totally ideal to wear this _____ item, would I wear it? If no, toss it. No sense in hanging on to stuff.

2. Cheap vs. High Quality - I find that most of my good quality/designer stuff I just tend to keep for longer, wear more and just feel way better in than some of my cheaper/trendier/more on the spot purchases that I am lured into because of cheap price and assumed high value - except it's actually not. Any lesser quality trendy stuff from last season I most likely will not wear again, and that's the point of buying it. TOSS IT.

3. WHAT the hell is under my bed!? I have everything already organized into compartments - 3 large rolly bins (the day I don't have shit under my bed will be the day I know I've made it in NY, along with when I have a washer/dryer and dishwasher) plus 3 little zip around containers that keep 1) medicines/supplies 2) All nail polishes and items 3) Extras and backups: soaps, lightbulbs, etc. The containers that piss me off are the larger 3. They hold 1) Grad school notebooks, binders and books. I feel like I can't get rid of this until I graduate, but it is so heavy and I only open it to add more retired notebooks. 2) the "sweatshirt box" that also has scarves. I never wear these scarves. I also SHOULDN'T wear some of these sweatshirts, as they are fugly. TOSS SOME of these. The 3rd box has handbags. Although the ones I use are in my closet, I can't get rid of them. Maybe I'll find a way to ship these babies on a one way trip back to my parents house in Charlotte, NC, to my old room. That I now realize is a PALACE.

4. LESS IS MORE. Leave enough room between hangers so you can see what you have. Then it's like you're shopping in your own little personal boutique in the morning to get dressed. ALSO (very important) make sure to buy the thin little velvet hangers and ONLY use these in your closet. You can fit much more this way and the hangers all match, which is so visually pleasing.

5. COSTUME BOX (under my bed) - I am NOT in a sorority anymore. I don't have mixers. I barely have dress up parties, and I should never be a sexy cab driver again. Maybe a ballerina, but not the cab driver. Or an Amish person. I no longer need a dress up box. These costumes must go.

That was my Amish brother for the night, and real brother. His name is Zach and he lives in NYC too. He'll also be on Broadway someday soon.
6. Jewelry - how can I get this in order? I failed at an art project recently, when I tried to display my necklaces on my wall behind my bedroom door so that I would urge myself to remember what I have and wear it more. I have worn my necklaces more, but it has also made me buy more jewelry. In addition, I think I've developed a bit of anxiety as a result of looking at the little trinkets hanging there. I really like bold things that are sturdy, and am not a fan for some reason of small delicate things in a room, maybe because my room is smallish, and I just don't love chotchkies (SP? seriously have no idea).  I am going to purchase this hanging organizer so I can organize, and also hide my goods. And most importantly, easily pull them out in the morning to accessorize.
You can get something like this here on Amazon - for only $13. A small price to pay for organization.

7. Beauty products on my dresser - since I share a bathroom with my roommate, I can't really display my plethora of amazing beauty products, and now, my growing supply of anti aging products, so I generally keep them organized in my desk drawer. They need to all go back in there, aside from perfumes - which are pretty.
I took this to check out my newly purchased Celine sunglasses from afar because I thought they might be too big - but they are perfect and I love them, but I happened to capture just some of my beauty goods out and about on my dresser. These must find a home.

8. Undergarments - why do I have so many nighties and why don't I wear them? Again, throw away if it is something I wouldn't want to be seen in by someone else.

MOVING FORWARD: My Own Consumer Behavior

1. NO MORE ONLINE SHOPPING (for the most part). I've become addicted to the excitement of finding  items and hitting purchase, specifically in the daytime. Then when I get my packages, I have to deal with the annoyance of walking to the post office before work to return the stuff, or WORSE, not returning it and settling/keeping a mediocre item that I'm not in love with. This is done. I also need to stop spending so much on this nonsense. (This doesn't apply to Etsy and a couple other things, see below, I have reasons.)

2. BUY BETTER. Once I have space in my room (after the big clean) I will feel easy and breezy and able to leave my apartment in search of new and better items. I need to start shopping in more of the awesome boutiques that NYC offers (especially in Soho, East Village, etc) to find unique items. I used to do this more when I first moved to NYC, but now I usually meet with friends/am not in the mood to shop after work and on the weekends I like activities like brunching and having drinks and walking, and just haven't made a big effort to constantly browse the cool stores. Need to do this again. Also, I need to take advantage of Sample Sales to stock up on better priced designer items. (2 good blogs for finding Sample Sales are Madison Avenue Spy and Mizhattan.)  Well made items never fail. I can still shop online for 2 things: 1) home and jewelry items from Etsy - these are unique and good deals. 2) Any clothing item that I have already tried on in a store and know fits, but I find a better deal online.

There are so many great boutiques in the East Village that I haven't explored yet, even though I've lived there for 2 years. I've noticed there are a lot on 11th street.

3. BUY WITH THOUGHT - I recently read that you should try and purchase items that fit into 2 main styles of your choice, so that you end up with a closet that can be mixed and matched easily, rather than a bunch of random trends. I would say my primary style is Classic with a Menswear influence. I prefer tailored pieces in neutral colors, but I also like to add a sexy element depending on where I'm going. I like a bit of a edge mixed in to spice things up. I certainly am not trendy and need to steer clear of this, along with anything too girly/floral. The flowers are not really for me (along with any style that would incite someone to give me the "complement"... "OMG You look so cute!!" Fuck you. I'm not cute.
Good quality basics can't go wrong.

Love this menswear influence so much - with just the right amount of added sex appeal.

I love Sienna's classic style with a bit of edge/glamour.

Classic stuff like this can last for a while, be mixed and matched and always looks great. Or maybe she's just really pretty and I'm not even looking at the style. 

4. BUY FOR YOUR OWN LIFESTYLE - This is a major, major point, because while I would love a closet full of high heels, skin bearing tanks and studded shit, it just doesn't work out with what I do 40+ hours out of the week, which is a working at an online brokerage company. It's very conservative, so I obvi need to look professional. I also have 2 subway rides to work each day and then a good bit of walking, so I literally wear flats EVERYDAY.  I need to spend money on good, nice flats, rather than heels.  A good pair of black & nude heels will do the job. ha. Get it.

I need  a good pair of flats to get me through the day. These are by Elizabeth & James on Piperlime, on sale for  $195
I also tend to sit Indian-style at my job (ok, I'm tackling the professional bit one step at a time), so it's preferable if I wear pants and not heels for this position. A skirt and heels would make this suuuper awkward.
Hello, and welcome to my lap

So these are my own new rules for how I am going to clean, organize, and then restock my room and closet. If you have other tips please let me know! Staying organized in a small space is definitely an acquired skill, and very satisfying one, I might add, when done properly. How good does it feel to leave a space, know everything is in its place, and then come back into it?! Ahhh..mazingg.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Don't Speak

2 good songs, since Monday should be more about listening than talking.

1. Filligar - New Local - Envision having this playing on a nice cooler Spring/early Fall day and you're driving down a beautiful winding road to the mountains in North Carolina and all you see is greenery and sporadically placed country stores and little houses - and you're listening to this. Nice, huh.

2. We Can't Stop - Miley Cyris - This is the song that you probably wouldn't mention if you were trying to look really cool, but who cares, it's awesome. And it gets better on the 2nd and 3rd listen ;)