Thursday, March 31, 2011

What I Read This Month

...and when I say "this month," I really mean "March 2011."

Sleeping Arrangements by Madeline Wickham, 2001

The pen name of Shopaholic author Sophie Kinsella. I've always enjoyed Kinsella's stories, but while reading this book, it dawned on me that her stories always involve lies. Big, crazy, wild lies usually told by the heroine, with twists and turns and add-ons, and enough vamping to fuel many a jazz concert. As someone who values honesty, I found that disappointing. I also can't believe I never noticed that before.

Lying aside, the story was good. Less fluffy than the books she writes under the name Kinsella. I wonder which one is her real name? Maybe neither? If you're a fan of Kinsella's books, you'll probably enjoy Sleeping Arrangements, a story about 2 couples whose marriages are in trouble. A mutual friend "accidentally" arranges for each couple to borrow his villa in Spain on the same weekend. They both arrive, thinking they will be enjoying a private family vacation, only to find they must share the space. Hijinks ensue.

Not a bad read. Not a bad read at all. But so disappointing to realize that all of Kinsella/Wickham's books (or at least all half a dozen or so that I've read thus far) revolve around lies.

Skyscraper by Faith Baldwin, 1931

A 21st Century reprint of 1930's pulp fiction. A woman is torn between two lovers, feeling like a... oh no, wait. A young career woman is pursued by two men, one young and sweet with plenty of potential, the other established and rich with plenty of charm. Does choosing either of these men require her to sacrifice her career? A hopeful bit of fluff, written at the beginning of the Great Depression, a love story to vertical urban development, the beginning of the single-urban-career-girl-looking-for-a-man genre.

Out of Africa by Isak Dinesen, 1937

Dane Karen Blixen, under the pen name Isak Dinesen, writes about her decade and a half living and working on a coffee plantation near colonial Nairobi. Dinesen is breathtaking in her descriptions of the African countryside, but a bit slow and meandering in her story-telling. I'm glad I read it, but the movie is better (and how often is that true? Like, never. See, e.g., Twilight, Gone with the Wind, Jurassic Park.) (But how often does the movie star Meryl Streep and Robert Redford and real lions??)

Prep by Curtis Sittenfeld, 2005

The first novel from Curtis Sittenfeld, author of the more recent American Wife. Focusing on a midwestern girl who leaves her hometown of South Bend, Indiana (where I used to live!) to attend a private boarding school in New Englad. As a scolarship student who doesn't hail from a wealthy family as do most of her classmates, this book recounts her development from an awkward freshman through to her graduation.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Silk & Wool

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


Silk Dress-as-Top: Banana Republic (Christmas gift from my boyfriend)
Wool Skirt: vintage from my mother
Tights: H&M
Shoes: Ann Taylor LOFT (thrifted)
Earrings: Lucky (Christmas gift from my parents

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Grey Silk

Friday, February 25, 2011


Grey Silk Top: from Marshall's
Cardigan: Cynthia Steffe (thrifted)
Skirt: Ann Taylor LOFT (thrifted)
Cable Sweater Tights: from Filene's Basement
Shoes: Nine West

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Orange Silk

Amy Creyer from Chicago Street Style Scene hosted a Trunk Show party at the Cynthia Rowley store in Wicker Park. I attended as did several other Chicago area bloggers. A few of us went out for dinner afterwards. To read more about it, check out these posts:

Amy from Chicago Streetstyle Scene
Emily from Sartoriography
Lisa from Archives
Clare from Between Laundry Days

Thursday, February 24, 2011

work, Cynthia Rowley Trunk Show, dinner at Feast

Orange Silk Top: Forever XXI
Black Cardigan: Moda Int'l (thrifted)
Skirt: Forever XXI
Cable Sweater Tights: from Filene's Basement
Shoes: Nine West
Necklace: thrifted from somewhere in Wicker Park
Silver Hoop Earrings: gift from my parents

Photo courtesy of Amy
Pictured L to R: Clare, Tabitha, Lisa, Amy, me, Sabrina, Emily

Monday, March 14, 2011

Rookie Show

The Bar Show goes up every December. In February, we have the cast party along with the Rookie show - a spoof of the December Bar Show performed by the Rookies, i.e. anyone in the show 3 years or less.

The Rookie Show cast decided this year to wear all black in lieu of costuming each number. I wanted to wear something comfortable enough to perform in, but nice enough for dinner, rather than change for the show.

Friday, February 18, 2011

work, rehearsal, cast party, Rookie Show

Silk Blouse: Theory (thrifted)
Pinstrip Pants: H&M (thrifted & altered)
Shoes: You by Crocs
Brooch: vintage from my mother (she wore it to her cotillion)
Pearl Earrings: mine from the 1990's
Diamons Earrings: high school graduation gift from my parents
Ring: from the Brooklyn Flea Market

Friday, March 11, 2011

Friend Friday: Time Management

Friend Friday is the creation of Katy of Modly Chic. This week's questions focus on time management:

1. When it comes to prioritizing your life, in what place does blogging fall?

Blogging is a priority, but one of my lower ones. Relationship, work, pets, downtime and mental health, fitness/yoga and dancing, acting and other performance activities, then blogging and reading tied at the bottom. Blogging is not very high on my priority list, but it is a priority, meaning that I set aside time to focus on it and make a point of working on it even when I have a lot going on, unlike other fun things I do that aren’t priorities like watching movies or going out to bars or playing the piano.

2. We all wish we had more free time to dedicate to blogging and all it entails. What are your tricks for taking advantage of the time you do have to be as productive as possible?

No tricks. Just a semi-regular schedule. I read and comment on blogs in the morning over coffee. I work on blog posts a bit in the morning too, and I spend a longer block of time preparing posts on the weekends. I often take photos outside during the afternoon when I need a break and some fresh air.

3. Have you discovered any short-cuts that makes blogging easier or more time efficient?

Not exactly a short cut, but I prefer to spend a block of time preparing posts, usually on a weekend, then schedule them to publish, one each day for the next week or two. Also, I frequently carry my camera and gorilla-pod with me and take pictures when I’m out and about. That way, I can use more varied backgrounds without taking the time to travel to a location, since I’m already walking right by the spot. I don’t even have to spend the time walking downstairs and out of the office building, since I’m already out and about.

4. Do you have an editorial calendar or something similar that helps you plan ahead?

Nothing too strict. On the last day of every month, I post about all the books I read that month. At least one a month, I’ll do a post of outfits I was wearing that same month of the previous year. I can prepare all those posts well in advance and leave them as drafts, then schedule them to go live when I don’t have time to prepare anything else.

I participate in Friend Friday when I have enough time to prepare posts (which has gotten a lot easier now that Katy sends out the Friend Friday questions a couple weeks in advance; thanks, Katy!). I also prepare those in advance and schedule them to publish on the designated Friday.

Otherwise, I post daily outfit photos, and it often takes me a few days (or weeks) to get an outfit up on the blog. I almost always post outfits in the order that I wore them, so the oldest photo in my queue is pretty much always going to be the next one posted.

5. If time wasn’t an issue what you would be doing on your blog/for your blog that you aren’t doing now?

Locations! Right now, if I have enough time, I go outside near work or home to take photos. If I don’t have enough time even for that, I take them in the house, where I don’t have the best lighting or backgrounds. If I had unlimited time, I would scout locations and use the best ones rather than being limited to what is closest and most convenient. Even with a cheap point-and-shoot camera and mediocre photography skills, I am much happier with my blog when I have time to be creative with photo locations.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Silk Skirt

Thursday, February 10, 2011


Wrap Top: New York & Co. (thrifted)
T-shirt: Wet Seal
Silk Skirt: The Limited (thrifted)
Boots: Steve Madden (thrifted)
Silver Hoop Earrings: gift from my parents
Necklace: diy from my grandmother's old backdoor key

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Everybody, Everywear: Polka Dots

Everybody, Everwear is featuring polka dots for March. I am no longer posting outfits the day I wear them, and I don't have any polka dots in the queue, so the photo above is my favorite outfit incorporating polka dots that I've worn since starting my blog.

And, another way I've worn this same dress (also a favorite):