Thursday, July 28, 2016

8 fall classics for every budget!

There are a few basic pieces every wardrobe needs for fall... boots, bags, jeans and coats are the foundation for great fall looks no matter your style or budget.  And today I've pulled together some of my favorite wardrobe basics that I depend on all season long.  These pieces will be easy to pair with tees or sweaters to pull together any outfit this fall or winter.

The best part!?!? No matter your budget I've got something for you here!  I worked to find great pieces at all the price points to make your fall shopping as easy as can be!

camel coat 
(save - LOVE this one! | spend | splurge)

leather jacket - this is a great time to buy if you don't have one yet!

distressed jeans
(save - love these!spend | splurge - I just got these and love them!)

grey jeans - on my wishlist for fall!
(save | spend - love the distressing on these! | splurge)

ankle boots
(save - also in black! | spend - three colors! | splurge)

riding boots
(savespend | splurge)

fall tote
(save | spend | splurge

cross-body bag
(savespend | splurge)

Shop all the pieces here: 

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

my everyday style: late summer style!

Black and white are a no-fail summer combo that I always love wearing.   It's so incredibly easy to pull together and in one hot second you look totally pulled together.  It's a great combo to lean on as summer style is starting to get a little old.  I'm not ready for summer to be over, but I am dreaming of fall sweaters and boots.  You know how that goes? Or am I crazy?

This look is perfect for when you are short on inspiration or time but definitely in need a pulled together look.

(photos by Jennifer Ketchum)

Outfit Details:
Top (no longer available - similar, similar or similar - all options on sale!)
Jeans (old - similar - on sale!, similar - on sale! or similar)
Shoes (similar or similar - both options on sale!)
Sunglasses (no longer available - similar or similar)
Nails, Hollywood by CND

Monday, July 25, 2016

The Nordstrom Sale: Fitness picks!

The Nordstrom sale is still going strong, and while some pieces are going quick there are still tons of great pieces at even better prices to be had.

This time of the summer I usually reach my peak of indulging in food and beverages and it all catches up to me.  I've been terrible about working out this summer and with a good chunk of time until fall arrives I've decided that the reckless indulging has got to at least be met with some serious time working out.  Am I alone!?!? I'm not quite ready for the reality of fall and I want to make sure that when it arrives I at least still fit in my favorite jeans, you know!?!?

The Nordstrom Sale has some AMAZING fitness apparel on sale right now and I am loving the gym-spiration these great pieces are giving me.  Because we all know that new gym clothes making going to actually work out waaaaaay better!  How perfect are these pieces for showing summer who's boss?

Friday, July 22, 2016

what I snagged at the Nordstrom Sale!

Great news!  The Nordstrom Anniversary sale kicks off to the general public today and even better news: there are still TONS of amazing deals available.  If you want a refresher on my top picks read this post, for some great deals under $100 this post is for you OR to shop my closet for my favorites check out this post.

Today I am chatting about what I chose at the Nordstrom Anniversary sale... and ladies, let's be frank.  It wasn't an easy decision.  There is just SO much good stuff.   Needless to say, this year I went a liiittttttle overboard at the Nordstrom Anniversary sale... oops.

Every year the Nordstrom Anniversary sale coincides with my birthday AND fall clothes are my absolute weakness, so, um, yeah... it's a dangerous combo!  A few of these pieces are ones that I have had my eye on and was wishing and hoping would be marked down. A few are such great deals, I couldn't resist. And a few are just downright splurges, or "birthday" gifts. I have to say though, that this summer I haven't spent much on clothes, so I was also squirreling some cash away with hopes of finding some great deals at this sale specifically.  In a sense I just combined by summer and fall budgets together for the sale.

I ordered all of these items online so they are all subject to approval once they arrive.  A few have arrived already and some haven't... see my thoughts below on each piece.

caramel mock neck sweater - it's beyond me to think about wearing sweaters when it's 90 degrees out, but this one is so pretty.  I see wearing it with white jeans for early fall or black denim and ankle booties later in the fall.  Plus, this sweater is super budget friendly.
wedge ankle booties - speaking of ankle booties! It was love at first sight (and price!) with these.  I don't do well in heels, but every gal likes a little extra height so these wedges will be a comfortable alternative.  Plus, they are totally "mom" friendly. 
pale blue sweater - I'm having a serious moment with pale blue lately... this cross front sweater is so gorgeous, no? I can see wearing this with jeans or shorts for early fall.
over the knee boots - these have been on my wishlist for a while and at under $200 for suede I thought the price was great too.  Unfortunately, when they arrived they fit weird for me in the calf (which I don't usually have problems with on boots).  These are going to have to be returned (sad face!) - I am currently considering these or these as alternatives.
lace up back sweater - how fun is this top? I can definitely see throwing it on over a tank for Pure Barre or dressing it up for a date night. 
cashmere wrap - it was love at first sight with this cashmere wrap!  And on top of that, it's a fantastic price for cashmere at almost $100 off. This piece arrived already and it's just as gorgeous in person.  It's soft and flowy and can double as a wrap or an oversized scarf.  I can also see using it as a blanket on a flight.  It's so versatile and I'm really glad I snagged it.
pale blue handbag - THIS bag!  I'm kind of obsessed.  The color is a little out of the box for me, but I'm cool with taking a risk for fall.  I think it will be great to use this summer yet and this fall will be perfect to pair with blacks/greys/burgundies/etc. 
distressed jeans - This is my first pair of J Brand jeans.  They arrived yesterday and fit like a glove (thanks to Nordstrom's handy True Fit size recommendation).  They are a touch long, but since they have a frayed hem I am going to self tailor them (wink, wink!) for the perfect length.  These jeans have a higher rise for a really flattering look... I'm all about the mid to high rise jeans lately.  No muffin top or bulge here!

And on a completely unrelated note... I also snagged some candles too! Who doesn't love a new candle?

What are some of the pieces you have snagged from the sale? I would love to know!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Shop my closet at the Nordstrom Sale!

Are you sick of hearing about the Nordstrom Sale yet? I hope not! (wink, wink!) Here's the deal if you are just tuning in: every year for their anniversary, Nordstrom marks down the upcoming season's hottest pieces.  You read that right, the NEW fall stuff is marked down and that makes it a really great time to purchase fall must haves like boots, sweaters, jeans and purses.  It's a once-this-season deal that you won't want to miss out on!  Right now the sale is only open to Nordstrom card holders... but don't let that get you down.  You can sign up for a card (please shop with credit responsibly ladies!), or wait until it opens for the general public on July 22... OR if you don't want to wait and you aren't into credit cards (which is totally understandable, and so very responsible of you!) there is ONE more way you can get your hands on these goodies early... yep!  You can sign up for a Nordstrom debit card... no credit, financing or interest payments - it simply comes out of your checking account!  Pretty handy, huh?  But make sure you shop early, items sell out quick and prices go UP on August 8.

While I was shopping the sale myself this year (stay tuned for what I bought... I'll post about it soon!) I noticed that a number of my current wardrobe staples that I own and love were back in stock this year.  Some of them are a touch different styles as designers tend to change up minor details from season to season, but for the most part several of my past fall and winter staples are back AND on sale!  So if you have had your eye on any pieces from old posts that you wish you would've gotten or that were sold out in your size... a lot of great pieces are back!  I pulled together some of my favorite looks and pieces from previous seasons for you to shop my closet with the current Nordstrom sale prices!

This plaid blanket scarf is so perfect for fall and winter and is UNDER $20!  I highly recommend it!

These riding boots from last winter are one of my absolute favorite pieces.  They are SO worth the splurge and I hope to own and enjoy them for several seasons.  Plus, they are almost $200 off right now!

Last year I bought these duck boots at the Nordstrom sale.  It felt crazy buying winter boots in July, but sizes sold out super fast and then the snow started falling and I was really glad I had them on hand! They are under $80 right now!

Every gal needs a stylish pair of Hunter boots in her closet, right!?!? Hunter boots notoriously NEVER go on sale... but a super cute similar pair is on sale now (I actually like this style more than my style!). Snag them while they are available!
(above: similar striped dress - only $25!!, bag)

I love a good pair of distressed denim.  I've had this pair for a few years and they are super soft and fun to wear.  This year's version is on sale for less than $60.

This black hobo bag is made of buttery soft leather and it's the perfect carry-all.  AND, you guessed it... it's totally on sale right now for $100 off!
(above: similar jeans, clogs)

I've styled this vest up more ways than I can count... it's a perfect light weight layer for a touch of extra warmth or to add a little texture or interest to any outfit.  A very similar version is on sale here for less than $40!

Shop the pieces I've featured here by scrolling through them below... happy shopping!

Monday, July 18, 2016

Fall finds under $100 at the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale!

While there is still plenty of summer to enjoy (thank goodness!)... I am SO OVER summer clothes.  I've been re-wearing basically the same three summer pieces over and over and it's been so hot (and we are in the middle of moving!) that clothes are almost an after thought these days.  In all senses of the phrase, it is TOTALLY the dog days of summer.

With that being as it is, I've been squirreling away money for fall clothes and am starting to hoard them for the coming months.  (I mean, what is more exciting than the first cool day and breaking out a new sweater or pair of shoes!?!?)  Of course, there is one (BIG!) extra incentive for fall shopping right now and that is the HUGE Nordstrom Anniversary sale.  Every year Nordstrom introduces their new fall lines at incredible discounts.  It's a great time to stock up on new fall pieces for your wardrobe.  And while I love to take advantage of the super deep discounts on designer pieces, there are also MAJOR deals to be had on budget friendly items as well.

Today I rounded up some really fun fall pieces that are all under $100 - and actually MANY of these are under $50 with even a few under $30 - so this is a veritable treasure trove of deals here. These pieces would be a great foundation for any fall wardrobe.  My favorite are the burgundy saddle bag, the ankle boots and the cowl neck bell sleeve sweater.  I already own the same distressed jeanscream duck boots, and plaid blanket scarf and love them!  I hope you find something good here for your fall wardrobe!

Friday, July 15, 2016

my everyday style: striped t-shirt dress!

I've gotten in a serious rut with clothes this summer... I think it happens every summer.  It's the classic  "dog days of summer" it's hot, it's crazy with the kids home 24/7 and so I just keep grabbing a tank and jeans or a tank and shorts.  Over and over.  And then I come out of my summer induced stupor and think, sheesh, I should probably get dressed or something.  

This striped dress is a favorite of mine... usually I just pop it over a swimsuit or pair it with flip flops to run out the door.  But recently I wanted to feel a little more pulled together so I swapped sandals for flats and popped on a pair of earrings and suddenly I almost felt over dressed for summer.  Is that a thing?!?! We have had an incredibly hot summer... which I just love!  But I am a huge wimp in the AC, so usually I am toting a jacket along when the outing involves a grocery store or a restaurant.  This white denim jacket is the perfect tag-along and I love it with the stripes!

(photos by Jennifer Ketchum)

Outfit Details:
Dress (similar or similar)
Denim Jacket (similar or similar)
Flats (similar or similar)
Cross-body bag (similar)
Sunglasses (similar)
Earrings (similar)
*earrings via Rocksbox! Get your first month FREE with code: jillggxoxo

Thursday, July 14, 2016

The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale IS HERE!!!

The internet pretty much goes BONKERS for the Nordstrom Anniversary sale and here's why:  in an unprecedented move in the retail industry, Nordstrom celebrates their anniversary by marking down NEXT season's hottest styles.  Yes, you read that right NEXT seasons.  That means you can stock up on the upcoming fall styles for crazy discounts, right now.

It's the perfect time to stock up on jeans, coats, handbags, shoes, boots and sweaters for amazing bargains to make sure your wardrobe is ready for fall.  I've personally shopped the Anniversary sale every year and I never, ever regret buying for fall in July/August (which, yes, may sound a little crazy).

This season's sale has me all excited for fall and it's not hard to see why!  But here's a little secret: the sale technically doesn't start until July 22... but if you are a Nordstrom card member like me you can shop the sale NOW!  (please note, I do not endorse credit card debt, please use your credit wisely)  But don't wait to shop this sale ladies... items will sell out fast and prices got UP on these items by August 8.

Here are the pieces I have my eye on for fall, what are you loving from the sale?

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale picks!

distressed skinny jeans (perfect with riding boots! Or shop all sale denim here!)

pave "x" bracelet (has been on my wishlist all summer, now it's almost half off! Shop all sale jewelry here!)

black sunglasses (LOVE these for now and fall! Shop all sale sunglasses here! And there are SO many good ones.)

black wedge ankle bootie (ohhhh! Love these, and such a great price! Or shop all sale shoes & boots here!)

leather jacket (an absolute MUST have for fall! I wear mine all the time.  Or shop all sale coats & jackets here!)

grey dress (so cute with a denim jacket and ankle boots this fall and it's under $50! Or shop all sale dresses here!)

black distressed jeans (these are my FAVORITE cut, they are incredibly flattering! Or shop all sale denim here!)

brown suede hobo bag (I have this in black - also on sale! - and LOVE it... suede is PERFECT for fall! Shop all the handbags on sale here!)

hunter boots (the ONLY time Hunters are on sale... get em now. Or shop all sale shoes & boots here!)

cowl neck sleeveless sweater (I love this for early fall and then with a blazer or leather jacket for later in the season! Or shop all sale sweaters here!)

black open back top (how cute is this!? And it's under $50! Or shop all sale tops here!)

kendra scott earrings (it's your only time to get these babies on sale! Shop all sale jewelry here!)

Get shopping ladies! I know I am... stay tuned for what I buy!

Want an even easier way to shop... click the "read more" button below  for a click to shop image!

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

home tour: my master bedroom with Havenly!

Today I am kicking off a home tour series here on the blog! To kick the series off I am featuring my master bedroom... which is (now) one of my absolute favorite rooms in the house.

A few years ago my husband and I invested in beautiful furniture for the room and then, well, we just stopped there.  The master bedroom with it's beautiful furniture was then the cast-off room for unwanted accents that didn't fit around the house and without any real "style".  For some reason I had taken seriously the decorating of my entire home including the dining room, my office, the kids rooms, etc. but I had never taken the time to put the finishing touches on our master bedroom.  Such a shame, right!?!?

Enter Havenly.  Have you heard of them? Havenly is an online interior design service.  For a flat fee you choose a designer based on your style (there are SO many talented designers on hand there!), you send them before pictures and you choose your inspiration or what you want the room to look/feel like and bam! They get straight to work!  After uploading photos and answering a questionnaire on the site, my designer and I chatted briefly on the phone and then she got started on my room.  It was so easy, and quite honestly REALLY fun to see her work and tweek and design.  I was included in the whole process start to finish with lots of iterations on the room.

My designer at Havenly took my room and put the most beautiful finishing touches on it!  Now it is an absolute oasis from our busy home for our husband and I.  And the whole process was really fun and easy.  Let's take a look at how the room turned out!

If you are interested in working with Havenly to design the room of YOUR dreams in your home... use code: GOODLIFE at checkout to get 20% off your design services!  

Stunning... right!?!? My designer really "got" me and she instantly had a vision for my room based on my style.   Here was the final design mock up I worked from to transform the room: 

With my budget I decided to purchase the rug, throw pillows, new knobs for our basic dresser, the feather accent and the light above the bed.  I really loved the lamps, the mirrors and the bench that the designer suggested, but with our budget right now I am going to work towards purchasing those in the future.  It's the perfect balance of loving the room RIGHT NOW and still having inspiration for the future if/when we want to add new pieces. 

I love to decorate my home, but I get overwhelmed with the decisions. Am I alone? That is why Havenly worked out so great for me.  I got amazing selections and ideas from my designer, but in the end I get to work within my budget and essentially pull the room together in real life on my own.  The design plan is so flexible and self-serviceable that whether you are clueless when it comes to interiors or if you enjoy decorating your own home but need some help - this service is for you.  Another major bonus is that Havenly takes care of all the ordering and tracking of the delivery of your items.  So you don't have to follow it all - they do the dirty work for you!

Let's take a closer look at the completed room:

 Is there anything more fun than new throw pillows? I'm so in love with them! The lamps are really old from Home Goods and at first I thought they were on the chopping block, but they looked PERFECT with the new room design and I was happy to save money there. 

The biggest change to the room was the one I was most skeptical about... the rug!  I didn't feel that it was worth the money (hey, rugs are expensive!) to put a huge rug in the room over the carpet (and half under the bed).  But in the end this is the part of the room that I love the most.  It's amazing what a difference the rug makes to the look and the feel of the room.  It really pulls it together and gives the room a very cozy feel that wasn't there before. 

The biggest inspiration for the room was these family photos from Torrey Pines State Reserve in Southern California (photo credit: Maria Johns).  I loved the grey, gold, peach, cream and silver tones from the photos and wanted the whole room to have that soothing, beachy feel to it.  My designer picked up on that immediately and I am so thankful for it.  She definitely pulled it off!

Adding new knobs to our basic IKEA dresser was another huge "a ha!" moment! I love these dressers for their practicality and voila - just like that the dresser is suddenly beautiful as well.  Another big win for my designer!  

To say I am in love with the overhead light our designer chose is an understatement.  Isn't this light a beauty!?!  This is by far my husband's favorite part of the room.  He likes to have input on the house too and he agreed that this piece really made the room. 

The feather accent above the bed is another thing that I never would have splurged on for the room, but with the suggestion of my designer was a great addition.  I've struggled with what to put over the bed since we got it and this piece was perfect. It adds a piece of fun and whimsy to the room. 

So there you have it!  A big thanks to Havenly and my designer Nikoletta for this stunning new retreat.  I feel like a queen in here!  And the best part... after years of never making the bed - I am suddenly addicted to waking up and making the bed and enjoying this room to it's fullest every day!

(photos by Jennifer Ketchum)

Don't forget! If you are interested in working with Havenly to design the room of YOUR dreams in your home... use code: GOODLIFE at checkout to get 20% off your design services!  

A big thank you to Havenly for sponsoring this post. 
Thank you for supporting the brands that support my blog. All opinions are my own. 

Room Details:
Dressers, IKEA
Light, West Elm - c/o Havenly (or similar, but larger)
Rug, NuLoom - c/o Havenly
Throw Pillows:
Pink, West Elm - c/o Havenly
Cream, Home Goods (similar)
Grey, Home Goods
African Feather Hat, Etsy - c/o Havenly
Gold Knobs for Dresser, Anthropologie - c/o Havenly
Lamps, Home Goods (old, but similar)
Bedding, Target 

If you want... you can view the "before" photos after the jump!

Monday, July 11, 2016

how to style: sneakers!

Sneakers are an absolute summer staple.  From busy weekends, to activities with the kids to exploring new locales while on vacation... every gal needs a stylish pair of sneakers on hand for summer.  And crazy but true - fall is nearing (yikes!) - and sneakers are an absolute must-have for fall as well.

Since sneakers are must-have now... and a must-have later for fall I thought I would re-run this very popular post from last year updated with my favorite sneakers picks now in stores.  There is tons of great outfit inspiration here for summer and fall if you are needing some tips on how to style your sneakers this season or next.  But here is my best tip for styling sneakers: there is no wrong way to do it! From jeans to shorts, to dresses or from sweaters to tees, to tanks... pair them all with sneakers for a fun and modern look that is always comfortable and cool.

1. pink slip-on vans (so so cute!) 2. adidas "stan smith" (according to Jess Lively all the girls in Paris are wearing these right now!) 3. black nikes (these are on my wishlist right now!) 4. white converse all-stars 5. new balance baby blue sneakers 6. white/gold sneakers (drooling!) 7. navy canvas superego (comes in TONS of colors!) 8. burgundy nike air (LOVE these for fall!) 9. leopard slip on sneakers

Friday, July 8, 2016

shop the summer sales...

It's summer sale season ladies!  And as usual, there are a million ways to blow a paycheck on all the crazy markdowns right now.  Eek!  I love to shop the end of season sales... but I have a few tips and tricks I use to make sure I am shopping the sales smartly.

See, end of season sales can be tricky.  Let's be honest, they are basically what the retailer bought too much of for the season or (whomp, whomp) what no one wanted at full price.  That's the ugly truth.  SO with that in mind I always shop the sales with my guard up a little so that I'm not getting burned on a piece I won't love next year or that doesn't fit great.

Here are my tips for shopping the end of season sale:

1) Don't buy something JUST because of the price.  Ask yourself if it's something you would have bought full price? Or is it something you have had your eye on but you were just waiting for the price to drop? Make sure you are not being blinded by the great price for a piece you don't love or that doesn't fit great.

2) Ask yourself on the spot if you can come up with three ways to style the piece.  I use this rule in general for shopping... but especially during sale season when it's easy to snatch and grab than truly think out your purchases.

3) Think about the long view.  Sure there are two more months of summer (and maybe even more of summer-like weather) to wear your newly acquired summer sale pieces.  But will you wear them again next summer? Or maybe for a warm-weather vacation this winter? Maybe now is a great time to shop for next year's spring break? Think about how you will not only wear the piece in the immediate future, but over the next few years as well.

4) Does the piece fit!?!? Ladies, we've all fallen prey to "settling" for a piece that is a great price but that doesn't fit great.  Me included.  Let's just not do that, okay?

5) And lastly, go for the classics.  I always try to cull through the sales to see what pieces are offered that are true classics.  These will be your best deals.  Hopefully in 3 years you will still be saying how you "got such a great deal" on  your summer sale finds, right!?

And speaking of those classics... here I pulled together quite a few classic pieces that are currently on sale for GREAT prices.  I love all these pieces because they are easy to style (rule #2!) and will stand the test of time in your closet (rule #3!).  Happy shopping ladies!

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

my everyday style: lake style!

Summer in Michigan revolves around one thing: water.  Little lakes, big lakes, boats, your friend's boats, cottages on the lake or your friends' cottage on the lake, kayaking, paddle boards etc, etc.  And hey, it's not a bad way to spend a few months.  All Michigan residents do in the summer is seek water and since we live right near the Great Lakes, it's not too hard to find it.   What is your water activity of choice in the summer? Mine is laying on the beach reading.  It's hands down my favorite.  But any time a friend will offer up a boat ride I'm game for that too ;)

Speaking of that "one thing"... my wardrobe in the summer revolves around one thing too: simplicity. I like items that do double duty, are easy to style and easy to wear.  That is why I love this tunic!  It's lightweight and comfortable and can be worn so many different ways. Here I am wearing it with a simple pair of shorts and a wedge sandal which is a classic summer look.  I've also worn it as a swim cover up, with blue jeans or with black jeans. Any and all of those outfits worked great.  The best part is that this tunic is under $30... so it's the perfect summer buy.

I've also got a great NEW feature on the blog today and I would love to know how you like it... after scrolling through all the photos here, the last photo will be shoppable when you click on it.  Love the shoes? Click on them to shop! Love the shorts? Click on the shorts to shop!  Let me know how you like this feature and if I should make it a permanent feature around here. (unfortunately, it doesn't seem to be working on mobile devices... I'm going to look into that and get back to you!)

NEW! Click the on the photo below to shop individual pieces... try this new feature and let me know if you like it!

(photos by Jennifer Ketchum)

Outfit Details:
Tunic, Old Navy
Shorts, Old Navy 
Bag, J.Crew (old but similar, similar or similar less expensive)
Wedges, J.Crew - so comfy!
Sunglasses, Ray Ban


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