All posts by Kristina Crowley

Another Fall, Another Tote

I have to say fall is my favorite season in terms of fashion and my own personal wardrobe. The weather is the perfect combination of cool and warm, allowing all fashionistas to dress how they please without much concern with the temperature. One of my favorite splurges before the fall every year has to be a new tote.

Tote bags are the most practical and stylish of all handbags in my opinion. They are sleek and polished, all while letting you bring around your necessities, plus more. As a student, I look for totes that I am able to fit my laptop and books in. However, I also look for bags that will double as a work bag that I can fit a lunch and some water in. It hasn’t always been easy, but every year I seem to come out with a tote bag I like more and more.

Whether it is back-to-school or just another fall at the office for you, there are a variety of chic totes out there calling your name. Take a look at some of my favorites below.

I currently own the Michael Kors Hamilton bag pictured below (only without the studs) and I absolutely LOVE it. Though you could probably say I’m a bit partial after working there for a year, I promise that bag, or any of the bags below, will not let you down.

Happy tote shopping!

 

Tory Burch Jaden Canvas Tote– Nordstrom- $225

 

Saratoga Studded Tote– Free People- $68

 

MICHAEL Michael Kors Hamilton Large Studded Tote– Michael Kors- $378

 

H&M Bag– H&M- $24.95

 

Pretty Nylon Medium Tote– Marc by Marc Jacobs- $198

Sperry Top-Sider Hingham rain boot

Life Beyond Boat Shoes: Sperry Top-Sider

When I think Sperry Top-Sider, I think boat shoes, barbeques, and summertime. I love my rose gold metallic Sperry’s that I rock for a lot of the summer.

However, as I was browsing my local Nordstrom the other weekend, I picked up a pretty flat that caught my eye. It was leopard print (always a fave of mine), and looked comfortable and well-constructed. I was shocked when I looked inside the shoe and saw that it was made by the one and only Sperry Top-Sider.

From there I did some investigating on what Sperry has to offer besides their classic boat shoes. Yet again I was surprised by some of my findings! Sperry has a lot of good-looking flats and a nice selection of rain boots. While some of the shoes are a little bit on the pricey side, I definitely would consider purchasing some of them mainly based on their quality. Any company that makes boat shoes has to make sturdy winter and rain boots as well, right?

Here are some of my favorite Sperry-Topsider shoes that I found. While I can’t say if I would spend this amount of money on some of them, I can say that I might if they look cute on and are comfortable!

Annabelle Flat– $98

Sperry Top-Sider Annabelle Flat
Love the leopard print and cap toe

Hingham Boot– $59.99

Sperry Top-Sider Hingham rain boot
These boots make me hope for rain

Brooks Flat-$69.99

Sperry Top-Sider Brooks Flat
Such a beautiful shade of blue

Shearwater Boot-$74.99

Sperry Top-Sider Shearwater Boot
Bring on the rain!

Serena Flat-$98

Sperry Top-Sider Serena Flat
adorable detailing on the toe

What do you think of these other shoes made by Sperry?

Review Double Feature: Komarov and Belargo

Komarov

When it comes to packing for any and every type of trip, I always have a difficult time choosing what to bring. I face an internal fashion dilemma—How many outfits will I need? Should I bring those cute heels? Am I going to need to bring a coat? However, the biggest dilemma I face is how to bring clothing items of mine without having them wrinkle in my suitcase…

Introducing Komarov. Komarov is a women’s brand that focuses on creating clothes that are perfect for travel and wrinkle-resistant. The fabric used undergoes a special pleating technique that allows the clothing to avoid wrinkling in your bag.

Don’t believe me? Check out this video about the pleating technique: http://www.komarovinc.com/videos

To top it all off, the Komarov collection is absolutely stunning … expensive, but stunning. I was sent four pieces below to model for you all and I loved each of them. The fabric is extremely nice and the looks are very chic.

Charcoal Tank- $93; Cocoa Brown Pleated Long Skirt- $137
Black Pleated Top- $88
Black Jacket- $275
And from the back, for good measure

Komarov clothing can be purchased at Nordstrom, select boutiques, and online at www.Komarov.com.

Belargo

When shopping for jewelry, I always go for the sophisticated yet feminine items. Belargo jewelry is just that. With pieces fit for royalty, the various collections are full of sparkle and detail.

I was generously sent a pair of drop gold earrings that are absolutely beautiful in person. I cannot wait to wear these out to the perfect event. They were even worn by Serena’s mother, Lily, on the hit TV series Gossip Girl. How can you not get excited about that, hmm?!

Nugget Drop Earring- $150

Belargo jewelry can be purchased at http://belargojewelry.myshopify.com/.

Do not miss the opportunity to experience two of these true gems in the fashion world!

Photos: Kristina Crowley/BeautyXpose; Disclosure

Sam Edelman Fall 2012 Collection

I have to warn you that I am a bit of a Sam Edelman addict. And by a bit, more like I dream about every wildly unique and charming collection with the changing seasons. That’s why I had to share with you my obsession with the Sam Edelman Fall 2012 collection.

Sure the fall and boot season may seem like light-years away from the humid August weather, but this is the best time to shop fall footwear. Since it is still a little too early for back-to-school shoppers, you are much more likely to find your shoe size now.

Sam Edelman’s Fall collection is made up of fun animal prints, bright colors, and charming booties. This designer does an amazing job incorporating prints without being over-the-top crazy. The playful designs of this collection allow you to easily shift from day to night in many of the styles.

I have to admit that I have already purchased two of the pairs from the fall collection that I show below (the Adele boot and the Fern flat), but only because I know the great comfort and quality that comes with all Sam Edelman shoes.

Discover some of my favorites from the Sam Edelman Fall 2012 collection below and get searching from some of your own ASAP! You will not regret it—this Sam Edelman supporter promises you.

Sam Edelman Fern Flat– Nordstrom- $119.95

 

Sam Edelman Felix– Endless- $170

 

Sam Edelman Adele– Urban Outfitters- $200

 

Sam Edelman Danielle– Bloomingdale’s- $120

 

Sam Edelman Aster– Zappos- $150

 

View the full fall collection here: http://www.samedelman.com/collection/the-fall-2012-collection/

 

 

 

 

Trend Alert: Studs

For some reason, my inner wannabe-a-cool-rocker-girl can sometimes be channeled into my clothing. I love embellishments that are classic, yet girly. That’s why I could not have been happier to see all the studded clothing and accessories that recently walked the runway and into some of my favorite stores.

Studded clothing is a trend I hope everyone tries! A studded jacket or heel is the perfect accessory to a going out outfit. Studded shorts or tops in the daytime can also give off a relaxed, but bold look. Studs even make their way over to jewelry in the form of leather bracelets. Pair this type of bracelet with the right arm party and you are officially in edgy-chic territory.

Beware fashionistas: Studs add that instant glam that will have heads turning the minute you enter a room. Only rock this trend if you really want people to notice you!

Check out some of my favorite studded items below and try out your own—if you dare!

 

Studded Denim Jacket– Zara- $99.90

 

Golden Hippie Studded Cutoff Shorts– Free People- $98

 

Jeffrey Campbell Studded Homg Sneaker– Karmaloop- $196.95

 

Total Stud Blouse– Nasty Gal- $48

 

Cara Accessories Sliced Leather Studded Bracelet– Nordstrom- $31.90

 

 Do you own anything studded in your wardrobe?

 

Product Review: Polish & Co.

When it comes to new nail polish lines, I am always 100 percent eager to try them out. That’s why when I was given the opportunity to review Polish & Co., I couldn’t say no!

Polish & Co. is a new nail polish line that brings all that beloved southern charm to your very own nails. As North Carolina’s newest beauty brand, the polish seems promising for all beauty mavens. With a number of fun bright and fun colors, this polish line is sure to capture the hearts of all summer girls.

I was nicely sent polishes in the shades “Oh Hell No” and “Caution.”

“Oh Hell No” is a beautiful iridescent pink that in some lights even looks a little purple. “Caution” is a light yellow shade that will surely add a pop to any look.

"Oh Hell No" by Polish & Co.

“Oh Hell No” glided on my nails with ease and left a beautiful, polished result. This shade is definitely professional enough for the office, but sweet enough for a night out.

 

"Caution" by Polish & Co.

“Caution” had an equally satisfying result, but the formula for this polish was much thicker and a little streaky. Use more than one coat though, and you are golden (literally)!

The best part about Polish & Co. is that all polishes are non-toxic. So you can feel good when using these polishes for your next manicure.

Polish & Co. nail polishes retail at $12 each and are now available in a selection of boutiques as well as online at www.polishandco.com.

On my nail polish rating scale, I’d have to give these polishes an 8 out of 10 (and I am very picky). So go out there and sport your own sweetness with these charming North Carolina polishes!

 

Photos: Kristina Crowley/BeautyXpose, Polish & Co.
Disclosure

Must Shop: Nordstrom’s Anniversary Sale

Nordstrom’s Anniversary Sale has to be one of my favorite and most anticipated sales of the summer. Note: Do not be deceived—this is NOT a summer sale! Nordstrom is giving us fashionistas a chance to shop some of the fall 2012 season’s most popular items at a reduced price for a limited time only.

From now until August 5, shop the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale online or in Nordstrom stores. These are brand new and stylish fall items that are marked down immediately as they begin to hit stores. This means no need to fear limited sizes, colors, etc. A true gem for the fashion-forward girl.

I plan to visit my local Nordstrom this weekend, but I’ve also spent some time pining over my favorite Anniversary items from the online site (free shipping, free returns always). Let’s just say the items below are part of my extreme wish list.

So do not hesitate and jump on the chance to get some awesome fall items during this sale! Prices go UP, yes up, on August 6. Take advantage while you can!

Sam Edelman ‘Fern’ Flat– Nordstrom- $79.90

Every year I look for a pair of leopard print flats I love with no luck… until now! I’m a huge Sam Edelman fan and these flats are the perfect combination of fun and practical.

Free People Skinny Stretch Corduroy Pant– Nordstrom- $44.90

This sangria color is amazing for a fall wardrobe. And hello — when else are you going to get cute Free People pants at this price?!

Pour la Victoire Prado Medium Tote– Nordstrom- $262.90

When first looking at this bag I was totally confused by the sides, but I am in love with the color palette! Very expensive looking.

Vince Camuto Contrast Trim Blouse– Nordstrom- $58.90

This blouse can switch from day to night in an instant. Perfect for those busy days and a top that would be beneficial to any wardrobe.

Have you shopped the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale before?

 

Summer in Accent Nails

If there’s one thing you need to know about me, it’s that I always need to have my nails painted. I am not kidding you when I say that I get anxious when my nails are chipped and ugly. It is my pet peeve to say the least.

Recently, I’ve really gotten into experimenting with the large collection of polish that I own. My new motto is, why use one color on all your nails when you can mix it up? Cue the entry of the accent nail.

A popular trend over the past year or so has been painting your ring fingers a different color or a unique design from the rest of your nails. I played around with this a bit in the past, but definitely not with the same commitment of lately. Patterns, moods, and holidays have all inspired my nail art.

I’m making it a new goal of mine to try and sport a new accent nail every week until the end of summer. The summer is the perfect time to have some fun with your nails so why not try this trend out today?

Check out some of my recent accent nails below. I’d love to hear what you think!

Week 1: Polka Dots

Polka Dots

I love the color of this Essie polish. I added navy and nude dots to my accent nail for a fun a girly look.

Week 2: Patriotic

Patriotic

I have to credit this awesome accent nail to Free People Burlington! I stumbled upon a nail art event the day before the fourth at their store and they created my idea for Fourth of July nails perfectly. Thanks FP girls!

Week 3: Leopard Print

Leopard Print

I decided to walk on the wild side with this accent nail. I created the leopard print effect by tracing dots of pink polish with a black sharpie. I am in love with the results!

I’ll keep you all posted on my accent nails throughout the summer. What are some of your ideas for accent nails?

Photos: Kristina Crowley/BeautyXpose

Hidden Gem: Fossil Clothing and Accessories

If you know me at all, you’ll know that I am a sucker for fun and feminine clothing. If I had the choice of a skirt over pants, I’d choose the skirt. And if I had the choice of magenta vs. aqua, magenta all the way. This is why I have to tell you about my love for Fossil’s clothing and accessories.

My Fossil flatforms from spring

I’ve posted about my adorable maxi skirt and flatforms both purchased at Fossil, but never really went any further on my love with this store. Fossil is known for its watches and handbags, which is why I was shocked to see clothes and so much more when I walked into the new flagship store on Newbury Street a few months ago.

I went about the store how I would any new store. Scanning for items I liked then checking out the price. The price point for their clothing is moderate, and they often have a lot of great items on sale. I personally love all of their dresses since they are cut very nicely and flatter the figure well.

Their shoes and accessories are also something to look at. If you are looking for genuine real leather accessories, then this store has just what you’re looking for. The quality and durability of their products is spectacular, as I’ve seen with how well my flatforms have held up all spring and summer.

Check out some of my favorite Fossil clothing and accessories below, and don’t hesitate to stop in your local store this season for some great finds!

Cora Dress– Fossil- $98

Can you say hello perfect orange summer dress?

 

Resin Plague Belt– Fossil- $14.99

Colorblock your outfit this summer using this chic mustard yellow leather belt.

 

Colette Top– Fossil- $78

This top has the perfect amount of sophistication for a casual or office look.

 

Suzie Sandal– Fossil- $39.99

Every girl needs a neutral sandal for summer. I can bet you these ones are comfortable as well!

Do you own any clothing or accessories from Fossil that you love?

Photos: Fossil (Flatforms from Kristina Crowley)

J. Crew’s Colorful Bottoms Craze

This summer season it is becoming inevitable that denim and neutral colored bottoms are… BORING. I mean the stores are making it pretty impossible to want to buy another pair of white pants when you could have them in pretty much every color under the sun. That’s why I couldn’t have been happier to discover all the amazing options that J. Crew has for colorful bottoms.

Upon walking into the J. Crew at my hometown mall, I was overwhelmed with colored pants, capris, shorts, and skirts all waiting for me to dive in. One of the sales associates explained to me that the shorts come in various lengths and from there various colors. This was perfect for me since some shorts looked better in certain lengths.

I ended up purchasing one pair of 3” chino shorts in mint green and a pair of 5” chino shorts in neon pink. The 5” pair was slightly too long on my legs, but perfect for cuffing or for wearing longer tops over. I ended up purchasing the shorts a size smaller than I normally wear as well, just as a tip for you shoppers.

Also, if the store you’re at doesn’t have the size and color bottoms you’re looking for, J. Crew will order them for you and ship it to your house for free. Talk about great customer service!

The best part is that many of these colorful bottoms at J. Crew are now on sale for great prices. So ladies—don’t hesitate and go liven up your wardrobe today!

Café Capri– J. Crew- $89.50

Perfectly tailored, these capris are comfortable and trendy. Pair with flats for a daytime look, or throw on a pair of heels for an after-work night out.

 

3” Chino Short– J. Crew- $45

These are the shortest length of the shorts offered, but still a cute length for a hot summer’s day! I have these ones in a mint green color.

 

Classic Mini In Double-Serge Cotton– J. Crew- $89.50

This is the perfect skirt for a mix of both casual and professional. The bright color options will spice up any office outfit.

 

High-Waist Double-Serge Short– J. Crew- $78

If you can rock a high-waisted short, DO IT! They are so chic and take any outfit up one style notch.

 

Where else have you purchased colorful bottoms for this summer?

 

Photos: J.Crew