I found this dress on the clearance rack at Target for $4! I love the plum color, pockets, and the exposed zipper in back. It’s definitely an easy piece to throw on and go out to dinner which is where I wore this with a burgundy belt and Michael Kors two tone burgundy pumps that I snagged at last year’s Nordstrom sale. Very simple but mixing ridiculously cheap pieces with more quality items is one of my favorite style tricks.

iPhone 141

I go back and forth about posting outfit pictures on my blog. I usually don’t think to take pictures even if I’ve put thought into what I’m wearing and I’m actually pretty camera shy. But I like getting outfit inspiration from other the other sites on my blogroll so much that I figured one or two posts can’t hurt!

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Eat at Cambod-Ican Kitchen. Ignore the rather shady exterior, the lack of a sign out front, and the odd collection of used furniture and knickknacks that resides right inside the door, although, that’s all part of the charm. Instead focus on the food. Because it’s amazingly good, incredibly cheap, and cooked from scratch while you wait.

BYOB (because you can do that in Pittsburgh) or drink wine out of water glasses while you watch the line of people heading to or coming from the Southside bars run out the door and around the corner. We went here with friends this weekend, and we’re just waiting for it to be featured on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives! The stir fried rice noodles were delicious and anything with their signature Moon sauce is worth a try.

Other highlights from our Pittsburgh trip were the Carnegie Museums, Mattress Factory, and Hofbrauhaus – the last of which is a replica of a famous German beer hall. It’s gimmicky to the extreme, but I have to say that walking into a massive room filled with people dancing on benches and clinking liter beer steins to a polka band playing Michael Jackson (did I mention it was 8 pm on a weeknight?) is a pretty unique experience. And the sauerkraut was delicious.

I think it’s only fitting that our Pittsburgh weekend was filled with good times and simple, non-pretentious food. And beer too, of course.

image from Carnegie Pulse

How did I not already know about The Outnet? Shoeperwoman saved my day by posting a pair of shoes from this site. Designed by the same team as Net-A-Porter, this website offers the same high end labels at discount prices. It’s a treasure trove of gorgeous things, but what caught my eye (not surprisingly) was these amazing Giueseppe Zanotti sandals – I’m a sucker for anything tortoiseshell. I also love that they show each item in a fully styled look which was one of my favorite features from Net-A-Porter. I still can’t justify these at $318 but I’ll be keeping an eye on the site for sure.

tortoiseshell

image from dlisted

No we can’t all get away with dressing like Dita von Teese and yes I know rompers are kind of old news. But that doesn’t mean I don’t love them both anyway. There’s still lots of time left in summer for cookouts and pool parties so it’s not too late to pick one up!

romper board

from left to right: Nordstrom Urban Outfitters Nordstrom Anthropologie Armani Exchange Topshop

Since I’ve maxed out my shoe budget for awhile, I figured maybe I should focus on another equally dangerous but potentially more profitable hobby – decorating/improving our house. Fortunately (or unfortunately really) this involves a lot of free sweat equity, but there are also a few items I’m searching for, including a smallish or mini chaise lounge. Which, when you google this term, gives you a nice variety of pet beds with fringe.

house1

Just to give you an idea of what we’re working with, above is a view of our living/dining room from about 6 months ago. We only moved in about a year ago and I’m slightly picky so the decorating process has been slow. Although there are a few minor changes that have taken place since this photo like the picture is hung up and we’ve added a cool hanging shell lamp from West Elm. There are some pieces in the room I love – both the small tables you see are family heirlooms (one Drew’s great grandfather made, the marble top on the other was used in a family candy making business). However, we also have our dining table in this room, so it makes for a lot of tables and not a lot of comfortable seating. And I would really love a reading chair. Hence, the Great Mini Chaise Lounge Search!

chaise1

Look, it’s a mini chaise that isn’t for pets! I like the subtle damask print but the antique wood scrollwork, not to mention the $1,600 price tag are a little much for me…

I like the shape of this chaise a lot, but the damask print is not so subtle – and after our wedding I think Drew doesn’t want to look at damask for awhile. Possibly forever.

And of course I had to scope out Ikea for the bargain version. Usually I like Ikea’s products a lot (we have a lot of them in our house) but this is minimalist to the point of blah, and $299 is cheaper than the others but still seems too much for what it is.

The search continues!

I got my new issue of Vogue this weekend and it seemed full of Victorian inspired looks for Fall – lots of delicate patterns, lace, ruffles, and a softer color palette with lots of lavender and mauve. It can be hard to pull off this style without looking dated and overly feminine, not to mention most of looks in Vogue are not what you would call recessionista friendly. Here are a few more budget friendly ideas I put together.

vicoutfit1

boots belt dress boyfriend blazer locket cable tights

Boyfriend blazers were all over Paris when we were there this Spring, and I definitely think they’re a great piece to pick up for Fall. They go with everything from dresses to jeans and this one adds a casual modern edge to an otherwise very girly look. Plus I’m kind of in love with these dark green boots. The whole outfit costs just over $250.

vicoutfit2

shoes top skirt cardigan cameo ring

It’s a classic look but the small touches like cut out detailing on the mary janes, cameo ring, and lace and tweed textures are antique without being fussy. This whole outfit costs $194.85 – the tweed pencil skirt is only $29!

I know this trend has been around for awhile, but I finally got around to trying one on while killing time in Target the other day. And I liked it. Especially because I’m easing into the idea of playing with my haristyle now that the wedding is over. Originally, I pledged to get a choppy bob as soon as we got back from the honeymoon but after living with long hair for a few years I’ve grown to love it. So when I went in to see my awesome stylist, we agreed to take baby steps – the first of which was leaving the length but cutting it with a razor and styling it so it has more piece-y texture. So to bring this meandering post back to the point, I think a few feather headbands would be a perfect touch to my revamped hair and fall wardrobe and I’m on the lookout. Who knows, I may even be crafty and attempt to make one myself!

Simple, neutral colors, and cute. You can find this one here for $12.99.

The tulle and button detailing are adorable, and I would buy this just for the name of the Etsy shop – “ubercake.” How cute is that?

Right, so I realize that this one doesn’t have a feather, but it has a zipper detail, is by Marc Jacobs and is 50% off. $48.90 at Nordstrom!

This is obviously a little froufrou for everyday (although I wish it wasn’t) but can you imagine how awesome this would look as part of a flapper costume or on an Offbeat Bride? You can pick this up for $38 at Deanne DiBene.