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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Look for Less - Office to Happy Hour for under $100

For my third Look for Less post, I wanted to put something together that I knew even I'd find helpful. I travel for work a lot. I often find myself running from meeting to meeting, only having to go straight to dinner/drinks. Therefore, I need something functional and comfortable that I'll be able to wear from breakfast all the way through dinner. The pieces I'm going to show are going to allow you to look polished and professional during the day, but chic and stylish at night.

This look is inspired by this snap from Pinterest:

Here are the pieces you'll need to recreate this look:

1.) Black Dress - I think a good LBD is something every woman needs in her closet. In fact, I would argue you need a few. There are so many occasions that warrant one. In the professional world, an LBD will be a staple that you will mix and match into countless business casual looks. 

2.) White Blazer- I think I've made it quite clear how much I love white articles of clothing. Nothing looks more crisp or clean than a good piece in a shade of white. A white blazer is just as versatile as a black dress; you can throw it on over jeans and a tee or a more formal dress for an instant outfit upgrade.

3.) Brown Suede Pumps- These shoes are classic and can be used in so many different looks. Based on the shade, I really would be hard-pressed to find something these wouldn't go with. I think suede is the perfect texture for fall/winter.

4.) Gold Wristlet- This little bag is the perfect size to keep in your computer bag during the day for the essentials. Then, at night, you can pull it out and you're ready for happy hour. The gold tone of this one is so pretty and looks more expensive than it is.

5.) Statement Necklace- I have more statement necklaces than I care to admit. Seriously, my husband thinks I'm crazy. But I rely on a good bauble to accent my outfits and complete the look. A good statement necklace can transform an otherwise drab ensemble into a ready-to go look. 

You can shop these items here:
LBD: Forever 21 ($19.80) //
Blazer: SheInside ($24.67 - click the button on the sidebar for direct access to shopping their amazing pieces!) //
Pumps: Old Navy ($14.97) // 
Wristlet: Express ($19.90) //
Necklace: Tilly's ($9.99)


Leave a comment on what other types of looks you'd like featured on Look for Less!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Play Ball!

On Saturday, we went to the Cincinnati Reds game with Mike's family to celebrate his birthday. I love a good baseball game in the summer. Hot dogs, fireworks, ice cream cones, and cold beers all make for a great afternoon. For being the end of September, it was a scorcher! Finding the right ensemble for both the environment and the weather was a challenge but I always like to dress up sportswear a little bit. Nobody said that you can't go glam on gameday!

Shirt: Reds Apparel (love this one) // Jeans with Leopard Patches: Express (old - but these are similar) // Bag: Coach (old but this is pretty) // Ring: Forever 21 // Watch: Michael Kors // Black Triangle Cuff: Forever 21 (but this is identical) // Leaf Bangle: Francescas (this one is gorgeous) // Sandals: Target (old but these are similar) // Aviators: Ray Ban // Gold Leaf Earrings: gifted (but adore these)

Leave a comment on how you dress up gameday wear!

Friday, September 26, 2014

Hello Moto!

Here's to another favorite fall piece of mine  - the moto jacket. Believe it or not, this jacket is from the girls' section at Target. It is so comfortable and so stylish! The price is incredibly reasonable, too! I paired it with one of my favorite shades, oxblood, and white accessories for the perfect fall look.

Jacket: Target (nearly identical here) // Heels: Target (old but I love these) // Denim: Forever21 // Clutch: GigiNY // Watch: Michael Kors // Top: Vintage (love this style) // Necklace: Kendra Scott  // Earrings: Altard State (these are pretty and affordable)

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Splurge vs Steal - Fall/Winter Outerwear Edition

For this edition of Splurge vs. Steal, I wanted to explore all the options there are for coats and outerwear. I think we often get so used to grabbing our everyday coat out of the closet on the way out the door that we forget that are so many beautiful varieties for the colder months! Below I'll show 5 different styles and options for each that are a wide range of price points.

These coats are gorgeous and instantly can dress up any look. Beyond being warm (which they are), these types of coats are classy and polished. I love the bow detail on the Kate Spade version, but the DKNY coat is stylish, as well.
SPLURGE at Kate Spade [left] // STEAL at DKNY [right]

This jacket falls under the "grab n go" category. I LOVE my North Face and wear it so much in the winter. In fact, if it gets really cold, I'll even layer this under another coat. These fleeces are warm and cozy and perfect for the fall/winter.
SPLURGE at North Face [left] // STEAL at Columbia [right]

These, like fleeces, are perfect for adding an extra layer of warmth when it gets cold out. These can be worn alone or on top of or under another coat/jacket. I think the white color is really crisp, but you can find these in any shade of the rainbow.
SPLURGE at Lily Pulitzer [left] // STEAL at Port Authority [right]

I've mentioned before how much I love leather detailing. Coats are no exception. I think these coats are so stylish and can make any outfit look instantly polished. The tweed and leather in the H & M version marries two of my favorite textures while the Vince Camuto jacket is classic and clean.
SPLURGE at Vince Camuto [right] // STEAL at H & M [left - and on sale through today!]

The trench coat to the outerwear world is like the Chanel of the handbag world. The shape and style is immediately recognizable and admirable. These are perfect to transition from fall to winter. To me, this type of coat will never go out of style. Paired with skinnies and pumps, or a dress and sandals, you can't go wrong.
SPLURGE at Aritzia [left] // STEAL at DKNY [right]

Leave a comment below on where you shop for Outerwear!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Girls Weekend #2

On Saturday night in Indy, the girls and I hit the town! We got all dolled up and had so much fun hopping from place to place. For the occassion, I broke out my favorite score from the NSale a few months back. This Vince Camuto dress is a STUNNER. I got so many compliments on it! It looks way more expensive than it is and is super flattering. Please forgive the lighting in these pictures, it was raining outside so we had to make do underground ;).

Dress: Vince Camuto via Nordstrom // Pumps: Nine West (old but these are similar and gorgeous!) // Bag: Prada (similar here) // Earrings: Baublebar // X Ring: Baublebar // Watch: Michael Kors

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

What's In My Bag? - Business Travel

image via North Bay Woman

I travel a LOT for work. In fact, I'm leaving again today for a business trip! I'm that girl who has a separate bag of toiletries just for traveling that gets thrown in my suitcase whenever I have a trip coming up. I thought I'd do a new series on the blog called "what's in my bag", where I show what I'm carrying around with me, whether it's for travel or just my everyday routine. For the first edition, I'll show you a few essentials that must be in my carry-on when I'm getting on the road for work. Yes, I said carry-on. I hardly ever check a bag, even when I'm travelling internationally! It can be done. And it saves a whole lot of headaches. Below are my necessities for business travel:

1.) Dry Shampoo - This dry shampoo by L'Oreal is my favorite I've ever tried. It smells great and provides just enough oil-absorbing product to get me through day 2 and 3 of my style. When I'm traveling, the last thing I want to worry about it is washing my hair everyday. This provides me the luxury of not having to. Find it here.

2.) Scarf - I am always freezing on a plane. It's the same story every flight. Having a big scarf with me makes sure I'll be warm during the flight, but also provides an extra layer of comfort once I touch down. This one from Zara is my all-time favorite. 

3.) Umbrella- I travel to New York and Portland a lot and it usually almost rains at least once while I'm in either location. Having an umbrella in my bag has saved me more than a few times. Plus, it makes for a chic accessory. I'm a fan of leopard.

4.) Phone Charger for Purse - I'm that girl who always finds her phone at 10% battery. Having a phone charger in my purse allows me to always stay connected. Amazon has a ton of great options.

5.) Flats - Ah, flats. Probably the most important item to have on hand. I'll never forget the business trip I took to Florida where I ended up having to buy flip flops in the hotel spa because I forgot to pack flats. I adore flats the most when I'm in NYC. Give your feet some TLC and pick up a pair for your next trip. I've heard there's no better travel flat than Tieks, but this pair from H & M is under $10! You have no excuse!

6.) Jewelry Organizer - I travel with a lot of jewelry. I can't walk out the door without adding some sparkle to my look, even for business. In order to prevent the headache from tangled necklaces and broken bracelets, I've invested in a travel jewelry bag. My good friend Amazon is sure to have one that will meet your needs.

7.) Facial Cleansing Towelettes- When I travel, breakfast is at 7AM and dinners go until 10PM. By the time I get back to my room, I want to collapse in bed. But I know better. Even though I may not have the energy to fully wash my face, I have no excuse not to at least remove my makeup. These towelettes from L'Oreal are my favorite and they're only $5! 

Leave a comment with your travel must-haves!

Monday, September 22, 2014

Girls Weekend!

This weekend I met up with my childhood girlfriends in Indianapolis! We all grew up in the Chicago suburbs and now they've scattered around the Chicagoland area and southern Wisconsin while I'm out east in Cincinnati. Indy was a nice middle ground for us to meet. We had a blast catching up, exploring the town, and eating and drinking our way through the city. I feel so lucky that our friendships have lasted 20 years and I can't wait for the next 20 and beyond! Saturday we spent the day walking around town and seeing some of the sights so trusty flats and a scarf were necessary.

Leather Sandals: Purchased in Greece (obsessed with these) // Denim: Nordstrom // Blank Tank: TJ Maxx (old but love this style) // Clutch: Marc Jacobs (this is similar) // X Ring: Baublebar // Scarf: Boutique (this is cute) // Watch: Michael Kors // Sunnies: Charming Charlies

Friday, September 19, 2014

Splurge vs Steal - Handbag Edition

I am a handbag junkie. It's one of the few things that I'm not afraid to invest in. If you're able to score a classic piece, it's truly timeless. These are pieces that can be mixed and matched into many outfits that are both versatile and reflect your personal style. In this SvS post, I have searched high and low for the best handbags in the must-have shapes at prices that should suit an array of budgets.

 This shape is relatively new, yet still classic. These totes are able to hold all your belongings while remaining functional for everyday. I LOVE this oxblood color for fall.
[LEFT: STEAL at Forever 21 // RIGHT: SPLURGE at Celine]

 If there is one bag that will withstand the test of all fashion times, it's this one. These bags are absolutely gorgeous and perfect for dressing up any outfit. I prefer black in this style but they're available in so many colors.
[LEFT: SPLURGE at Chanel // RIGHT: STEAL at Rebecca Minkoff]

 This is your everyday bag. The one you can throw in your phone, credit card, lip gloss, and keys and be out the door. The cognac color is rich and complements so many outfits. 
[TOP: SPLURGE at Chloe // BOTTOM: STEAL at Forever 21]]

 Ah, leopard. I just can't quit you. Many of you will recognize this style, made famous by Clare Vivier. I think this type of bag is perfect for a night out, or even a casual daytime event. Its versatility is what makes it so great.
[TOP: SPLURGE at Clare V. // BOTTOM: STEAL at Macy's]

I personally cannot live without a weekender bag. I travel a lot and these types of bags are perfect for 2-3 day trips, hence the name. It's big enough to store your needs for a quick trip, but small enough to throw in the car or fit under the seat in front of you. There are tons of color and material options but, in my opinion, you can't beat black leather.
[LEFT: SPLURGE at Saint Laurent // RIGHT: STEAL at Sole Society]

Leave a comment on your handbag must-haves!


Thursday, September 18, 2014

Leather Leggings Vol. 3 - Edgy

For the third and final edition of "one piece, 3 ways", I wanted to take the leather leggings and make them a little more edgy (as I believe they're generally intended to be). You saw them ready for work and ready for date night, but now they're ready for a day of errands or a casual night out. I never thought I'd rock camo, but I found this blazer for a steal from J.Crew Crew Cuts, so I thought I'd give it a go. I think this look is fun and spunky and perfect for fall! This bag was a birthday gift from my fabulous mother-in-law, and I think this color palette is great for transitioning to fall.

Leggings: Topshop //  Bag: Kate Spade (surprise sale score but this is cute) // Blazer: J.Crew Crew Cuts (similar here) // Tee: H & M // Flats: Macys (love this style) // Watch: Michael Kors // Bangle: Shop Pretty Pants c/o // Earrings: Altard State (these are pretty) // Giraffe Necklace: J.Crew (love this option)

Leave a comment on which leather legging look was your favorite!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Leather Leggings Vol. 2 - Date Night/GNO

For the second edition of "one piece, 3 ways", I wanted to take the leather leggings and make them really feminine and girly. I am obsessed with blush pink and think its perfect for a night out with your someone special or your girlfriends. This sweater from J.Crew has the cutest scallop detail and these flats from Zara are my favorite ladylike shoe.

Leggings: Topshop // Bag: Vintage but love this option // Sweater: JCrew (love this one) // Flats: Zara (old but these are cute) // Earrings: Forever 21 (love these) // Rose Gold Ring: Baublebar (old but this is so pretty) // Watch: Michael Kors (style no longer available but this is chic) // Bangle: similar

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Leather Leggings Vol. 1 - Business Casual

I wanted to introduce another series I'll be doing here on Ninesto5, which is "one piece, 3 ways". For the first edition, I wanted to feature one of my favorite basics for fall- leather leggings. I LOVE my leather leggings. I think this was the perfect piece to feature 3 ways, because they really can make any outfit work. For this first post, I want to show a way to wear these leggings in a professional environment. Obviously, every office environment is different, but I think this look is polished and chic enough for business. I scored this blazer at the J.Crew outlet when we were out East over Labor Day and I can't get enough of the camel color and the gold buttons!

Leggings: Topshop // Booties: Kate Spade (similar here) // Bag: Prada // Blazer: J.Crew Factory // Tee: Target (also available here) // Earrings: Baublebar // X Ring: Baublebar // Watch: Michael Kors

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