Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Shopping for the Right Jeans: 3 Tips to Help Save Your Sanity!

For most women, shopping for the right jeans is a life challenge. Scratch that – a battle. You want a jean that’s comfy while still being sexy. A jean that’s versatile while perfectly suited for a night out on the town. You want a classic cut that is still trendy in style.

I know – waaaaay too many things to consider when thinking about finding a new pair of great jeans. While I have pairs that I love and some that I don’t so much (but still wear due to silly emotional attachments), it’s been a long time since I’ve walked into a mall with the goal of buying the perfect denim pant. Honestly, that means I would need to carve out a good chunk of my weekend to really be on the search. Ummm…not ready yet.

But, as I continue to tone my body (slimming this area, tightening up that part…), uncovering the right pair of jeans is at the top of my shopping list. There are many designers and brands out there to choose from, such as the awesome NYDJ, a line that is famous for helping women look and feel fabulous. (I’ve had a pair from this brand and can attest to its slimming jeans!). So to help you first get in tune with the concept of shopping for a new jean, while hopefully keeping you calm, collected, and actually excited about your next purchase, I’ve put together 3 tips that should help you before you immerse yourself in this gut-wrenching (ahem, challenging) journey. Consider these your starting points:

(Photo Credit: NYDJ on Instagram)

Be realistic about your overall budget. Whether you can afford a $200 pair of jeans or a $50 pair of jeans, the goal is to not break your bank while shopping. The reasons behind this are obvious (bills, bills, bills), but one of the things you may not have considered is the fact that you may want to score some new heels and a tee to go with your new find. So if your overall budget is $100, then it would be wise to budget everything else in as well. Caution: Once you look in the mirror and want to jump up and down because you found the pair of your dreams at a great cost, it’s likely you’re going to want to start styling an entire outfit around the jeans right away. You know, before actually leaving the store.

Consider your curves. These days, the question really isn’t “Do these jeans make my butt look fat?” Rather, it’s: “Do these jeans make my butt look big enough?” Women with curves often experience the difficulty in finding a jean that fits their rear and their smaller waist. Fortunately, the selection of jeans for women these days is getting better in being able to embrace a woman’s curves. So while the issues now aren’t so much having about limited options, it’s about patience really. Your best bet is to research where those jeans can be found, so you don’t waste time flipping through a rack of clothing that is designed for women without curves. Considering your curves is über-important, which will also prompt you to learn about which materials and percentage of stretch will do the trick. I also suggest exploring various colors and shades of jeans, as certain styles will either accentuate your lovely shape or make ‘em look sorta blah.

(Photo Credit: NYDJ on Twitter)

Think quality first. Yes, it is very likely that an expensive pair of jeans is of better quality than, say, a $20 pair of jeans. The craftsmanship, the brand reputation, and the material all play a role in the cost. While I do encourage you to leave a little extra room in your budget for another item to dress up your jeans…If you find that perfect pair that truly feels like it could take you all the way into a new decade – don’t skimp out. One great pair of jeans in a year is better than 5 cheap pairs that will soon split at the seams after just a couple of wears (or washes!).

While there are tons more tips to consider before shopping for the right jeans (i.e., versatility, the best length for jeans, the age appropriate factor), these are starting points…Happy Shopping!

To learn about the awesome collections of NYDJ, be sure to follow this brand on Twitter and Instagram!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Two Thumbs Up for Gwen's new Song? Baby Don't Lie...

I love her voice...Her insane sense of style...Her journey from Orange County Girl to pop culture icon....Her stardom as the new platinum blonde on "The Voice"...Her ability to make balancing celebrity, business, and family look so easy...Her power.

Now enter the first track we're hearing from her upcoming third solo album: Baby Don't Lie. Ummmm...I mean...I'll dance and sing to it. But I do feel that the lyrics are missing tons of substance. Then again, Gwen's proven for more than 20 years that she knows substance (No Doubt's "Tragic Kingdom" and "Return of Saturn" is full of some of her best poetry, in my opinion.) So a fun song to bop around to? Well, why not? It's what I did to her first two solo albums (Love.Angel.Music.Baby being the more fabulous of the two).

Ultimately, it feels like an appetizer to a really, yummy meal. That said, I hope her third album is full of delicious entreés. What I do know for certain - this pop art-esque video adds color to the song. No lie.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Do you REALLY need a vacation?

(Photo Credit: www.picpuddle.com)
When was the last time you thought to yourself, "Well, what's the point anyway?"

How often do you feel like just throwing in the towel on your creative passion because it's not paying the bills (right now)?

Have you ever looked at your wardrobe and suddenly lost all interest in showing the fun side of your personality?

Over the years, as a writer, editor, and social media content developer (see my bio), I've gained surges of inspiration at random times...and lost inspiration at random times nearly as quickly. Fortunately, I've gained some incredible lessons along the way and learned how to maintain a balance and create a life that I truly enjoy. But it sorta takes practice to get to a point where your desire to work long hours on a project outweighs your desire to escape from it all merely to sit on a beach somewhere and sip mojitos. (Although that does sound pretty fabulous.) I mean, isn't this quote from the incredible author, entrepreneur, marketer, and public speaker Seth Godin sooooo right on? When I came across it, I realized that it's my duty to not only be the 'Good Girl Gone Shopping' but to be the 'Good Girl Gone...Resourceful.' I love spreading the idea that you can always make a change and embark on a journey so that you can experience the life you actually want.

Every decision that you make in life contributes to the overall climate of your happiness or sorrow. I haven't been on a vacation in years (...ummm...at all?), and I didn't make it to my favorite So Cal beaches this summer. That's major.

But it's all good...I sense an amazing tropical island trip on the horizon and another scorching hot summer before I know it.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Free Your Heart Apparel: "For the Dreamer in All Of Us!"

(Image Credits: Courtesy of www.freeyourheartapparel.com
I think fabulously sultry singer Fiona Apple said it best: "...And I don't go to sleep to dream." But how do you stay grounded while keeping your head in the sky? How do you stay whimsically hopeful and not lose sight of your goals?

Free Your Heart Apparel is a Miami-based knitwear brand that "is designed for the dreamer in us all." In wearing one of these adorable tees, how could you need feel a surge of positivity? Founder Amanda Guevara, who launched Free Your Heart Apparel in 2012, aims to "inspire women with a brand that shows the dreamer in us all while still being comfortable and perfect for day or night. Beautiful silhouettes, impeccable bit and the softest fabrics can be easily dressedup or down. A brand you will fall in love with."

So reach for the clouds and get your shopping on! Thanks to Free Your Heart Apparel, Good Girl Gone Shopping readers can save 15% on all items starting tonight, 9/8! Offer good through next Monday, 9/15. Use shopping code: FYH15

*Connect with Free Your Heart Apparel on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook

Thursday, September 4, 2014

LA Fashion Week Volunteers Wanted for 'Project Ethos'!

Announcement: My friends at Project Ethos are seeking LA Fashion Week volunteers! If you wanna get involved (or you know of others who believe in the explosion of fashion, music, and art), be sure to make contact. 

If you've yet to attend and want to find out what really goes down at a Project Ethos event, be sure to check out some of my event recaps in Agenda Magazine: 

Monday, September 1, 2014

Well, Well, Well...If It Ain't September!

If you're an 8-5'er, I hope you're enjoying your day away from the office (It's Labor Day!). If you're a freelance professional, may you be able to carve out a little extra time to smell the coffee or go for a walk. And if you're both - working around the clock (like many of us are!) - may you find extra inspiration simply by being YOU. Currently, I'm transcribing my recent interview I had last weekend with a lovely fashion stylist. Yup - I'm feeling joy in my chosen path.

There's just something about the beginning of a new month that excites us! Something about a new month that offers us the chance to analyze our wardrobes and determine if our items are doing us justice. There's just something about having (what feels like) a do-over...

Surprise me, September! Let's see what you have in store. 

Photo Credit: www.weheartit.com 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Lounge Around in...Linge Shoes!

(Photo Credit: www.lingeshoes.com)
Linge shoes are these cutesy and comfy (and high quality!) ballet flats you can pretty much pair up with any outfit. Tons of colors to choose from. Tons of versatility.

I recently recently received a pair of bright red Linge shoes, which nicely add to my lounge wear. While these shoes have sufficient sole coverage for a basic narrow shape, my feet (which are weird, wide, and just well, not my fave body part) need a thicker and wider sole to support my feet when outside. That said, however, they are so perfect for me indoors, especially when having guests over...and especially when I don't have time to get a pedicure. So I've chosen my Linge shoes as my staple to lounge around in. Because they can roll up nicely in a bag, I also look forward to taking them with me on my next trip. What a perfect, space-saving item to pack!

To learn more about Linge shoes, which are designed for women ($59) and babies/kids ($39), be sure to visit its website! You can also connect with 'em on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram!

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Exclusive Interview with Kristi Yamaguchi - Olympic Champion and Creator of Activewear Clothing Line, Tsu.ya!

(Kristi Yamaguchi - the one and only!)

Did you know that Kristi Yamaguchi -- the Olympic Champion and American figure skater we've all adored over the years -- has a retail fashion collection? After recently learning about her line, Tsu.ya (pronounced sue-ya), I can think of a handful of awesome women who would benefit from this collection - including myself. 

"Designed to Feel Good. Designed with a Purpose. Designed for Real Life.

A philanthropist, active mom, and fashion aficionado, the Olympic medalist was influenced by her many years of traveling as an international athlete. She understands the importance of comfort when it comes to fashion! And these days, after several years off the ice, Kristi knows that women on a mission (who probably couldn't even grasp the concept of "getting a day off") deserve amazing clothing to wear. Offering modern designs, on-trend colors and sophisticated styles, Tsu.ya looks to nicely combine the concepts of fashionable and functional, while giving back to a beautiful cause; a portion of the proceeds from this activewear line going to her Always Dream Foundation," which inspires underserved children to reach for their dreams through innovative reading programs and by advancing the cause of early childhood literacy." 

For more insight from this all-star professional (including exclusive fashion tips!), check out our interview:

      As an Olympic gold medalist, did you ever envision that you would take on the fashion industry with an exclusive retail collection?
K.Y.: I’ve always been interested in fashion and have always been open to one day doing something like this. I think years of being a part of my costume designing whet my appetite.
(Yup - you can totally be comfy AND cute in activewear clothing!)

I really appreciate the concept of Tsu.ya. How does your retail collection stand out among what’s currently available online and in stores?
      K.Y.: We are proud to be a product with purpose. Tsu.ya was inspired to be able to give back so women can feel good both inside and out. Tsu.ya also takes great care in selecting quality fabrics that feel good. Our designs are on trend with a feminine touch with many pieces that can layer on the active ones for a more contemporary look. Silhouettes that flatter the female figure.
Tsu.ya has turned up the notch on casual, post-workout wear, adding a chic, feminine touch. What are some of your favorite Tsu.ya pieces you'd recommend to on-the-go, busy women for summertime? 
K.Y: I love the Danya tank...either over a sports bra or a cami. The Rachel capris are a staple and have a great wide, supportive waistband. The Julia jacket has been popular and will also carry over to Fall in a new color. 

(A portion of Tsu.ya's proceeds goes to Kristi's foundation - www.alwaysdream.org)

Which celebs could you immediately see wearing pieces of the Tsu.ya line? 
K.Y.: I see Reese Whitherspoon, Lucy Lui, Jennifer Gardner, Pink, Kerry Washington, to name a few!
Who or what inspires you?
K.Y.: My daughters, philanthropy 
What do you feel is the biggest challenge women have when it comes to shopping? Any tips to making the experience enjoyable? 
K.Y.: Have an open mind. When I go out to find something specific, I never find it. When I just go to look, something usually catches my eye. Also, I like going in the evening, its much quieter then. 
Three words to describe your own sense of style feminine, on-trend, comfortable
Wanna keep up with Kristi Yamaguchi? (I know, sounds so cool.) Connect with her on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook! Oh, and did I mention that you can find great deals on Tsu.ya.com! Go ahead - get your wallet out. 
Photo Credits: Courtesy of Tsu.ya

Friday, August 1, 2014

Win a ($100-Value!) Pack of Goodies From Vincent Longo Cosmetics!

(Photo Courtesy of Vincent Longo Cosmetics/Maria Lankina)

Feelin' a bit lucky? Then put those vibes to good use and enter to win a fabulous pack of cosmetic goodies from Vincent Longo Cosmetics. (I know, quite a fun collabo giveaway, right?) As the recent sponsor of Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Miami, Vincent Longo Cosmetics has been one of the world's premiere color cosmetics brand since its inception in 1995. Luxurious, high-performance formulas take the concept of "long-lasting" to a new level. (I'm in love with there Silk Velour Lipstick in Mulberry!)

To win all that you see above in this fabulous photo, just CLICK HERE. Yup - it's all about the eyes! Check out what could be yours:

- Pearl X eyeshadow in Luna Beach
- Creme Gel Liner in Velvet Plum
- Angle Liner #11 Brush
- Volume Plus Mascara in Black (Gluten-Free)

*Contest will run through Friday, August 22nd! Winner will be chosen at random by Vincent Long Cosmetics. 

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

3 Shopping Don'ts That DO!

(Photo Credit: www.seventeen.com
When I first began giving shopping tips back in '07-ish, my thoughts and theories were a bit more simple. A tad more black and white, if you will. I've always done my best to provide helpful information for y'all, which developed out of my own trial-and-error experiences and shopping outcries I would receive from friends, coworkers, and previous personal customers (past "Nordy" employee talking). Sometimes, however, you just grow. And in some cases, the don'ts that you once lived by, become dos. Here are 3 that could help you out:

(1) DON'T make a shopping list every time you shop. If you just feel like treating yourself and you're not obsessing over a certain item at the moment, don't limit yourself. Try a new store. Try a new fit. Try a new trend! Sometimes, allowing yourself to wind up somewhere new - or trying on something new - will open your eyes to new possibilities. This often happens to me at the Melrose flea market.)

(2) DON'T walk straight to the clearance racks. This used to be a must for me no matter what retail outlet, boutique, or department store I was in. But after doing this for so long, I realized that you skip out on the overall experience and aura of an awesome shop. Also, just because something isn't on clearance doesn't mean it isn't affordable...and just because you score a great clearance item doesn't mean it's of great quality. Readjust your thinking and you may try on an outfit that is full price and still fits within your budget. 

(2) DON'T remember where you parked. This one is tricky if you're on a time limit and/or you're wearing uncomfortable shoes. But if not, use the walking time to analyze what you bought -- hopefully with excitement! Get a good walk in, and enjoy the accomplishment of finding great new pieces to add to your wardrobe. Consider it meditational mall exiting. 

As always, I welcome your tips and feedback! Please feel free to comment below. 

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Get Exclusive 20% Off 'Weekend Society' Cool Casual Wear!

I'm sooo digging on Weekend Society. The LA-based clothing company (that I religiously stalk on Instagram) not only provides an affordable ($5 - $45) collection of guys and girls' casual wear, the message behind this brand is super cool: "Weekend Society is devoted to the wanderers, the wild ones, and those who believe there is still a bit of mystery in the world."

So how great is it that I can offer you, my fabulous readers, the chance to save while shopping their site?! Founded in August 2012 by Andres Andrieu and Jason Joyce, the Weekend Society collection includes a great selection of comfy cotton tees, snapbacks, hoodies, and more. I appreciate the balance of Weekend Society's So Cal style and vintage vibe, and I think you will too! So check out their site, learn more about their story, and update your wardrobe in the process.

Exclusive promo code: GOODGIRLSHOPS
Discount: 20% off anything in the shop!

Follow Weekend Society on Instagram and Twitter! (Both scenic and merchandise images are captured on camera beautifully.) 

Photo Credits: Courtesy of Weekend Society

Monday, July 14, 2014

I Wanna See You Tweet!

Happy Monday! Hope y'all had a fabulous weekend! From following up on new interview sources and phone chatting about a new project in the works to enjoying two nights out in Hollywood and playing a little b-ball outside (phew!), I was heavily busy.

...And because I'm social media-obsessed (proud of it), I typically tweet about my randomness in one or another. So if you're on Twitter, which I'm thinking you definitely are, be sure to follow me! I'm totally into creating connections and building relationships with like-minded creatives, so yup - I follow back, retweet, and reply regularly.

Tweet me or leave your Twitter handle in a comment below!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

No-Show Stylish Socks by Taft Clothing = Chic and Comfy!

There's nothing cute about sweaty feet (sans socks). Nor, is there anything cute about trying to attain the no-show sock look by pushing down long, bulky socks into your shoes. In both of these scenarios, Taft Clothing has your back.

With a collection for both men and women, this Utah-based clothing company (formerly known as "Wimbley's"), developed a style that is durable and lasts after several uses. According to Taft, they tested their socks "at the gym, on the field, on our shoes, and on the ground." 

The story behind Taft Clothing: In March of this year, they launched a Kickstarter project under the name "Wimbley's" to help bring their product to those who simply love shoes. In April, they ended up raising $45,000 (!!!), succeeding their goal of $29,000. According to the cool peeps at Taft, "Our no-show socks for men and women work because they hug your heal, ensuring your socks will never fall off! On top of all that, we designed our sock to look fun when you want to kick of your shoes...Just because you don't see them doesn't mean they have to be boring!"

Having received a cute pair of my own from Taft (the adorable polka dot, peach and navy pair you see above), I attest to the comfort and durability. I'm one of those fashionistas who pretends a mishap was on purpose, such as wearing mismatched socks 'cause I sloppily store them in my drawers. Now, just as I'm conscious with where I store my new Chuck's from Brize Collection, I am totally aware as to where I place my cute 'lil Taft socks. 

If you didn't get involved with the company's Kickstarter campaign, you can still pre-order your own pair(s) off their website: www.taftclothing.com. (A pack of 4 pairs for 40 bucks!) To connect with them directly, be sure to follow them on Twitter and Instagram

Photo Credits: Courtesy of Taft Clothing