A Tale Of Three Dresses

It’s New Year’s Eve! Tonight, I’m going out with my friends to celebrate in a gorgeous outfit it took me some time to find.

Story time!

I really had not planned on buying something new for New Year’s, because until maybe two weeks ago I had no definitive plans. My best friend suggested a club, and I found a really good deal on tickets for us to go and celebrate.

$40 for open bar til 1, free snacks, champagne toast, AND Β free breakfast? Win!

So last week, I decided to order a new dress for the new year. I figured I’d just pay for the rush shipping so it would be here in time. And then I had a problem. Which dress?

Here were the top three:

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From Eloquii.

You’ll remember this dress from my Holiday Look Book. So pretty, and simple.

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From ASOS.

Now, I have to wear black every day at work, so I don’t like to wear it when I go out. But I love the length of this dress because I love my legs. πŸ™‚

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From ASOS.

This was the final contender, and I love it because it had elements from the previous two: sparkle and short. And I don’t own any white dresses, so of course, this look won! Look at the detail around the collar:

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I like this because now I don’t need a necklace and I can add all of the bangles and rings I want to dress it up.

So, after all of that, I finally order, pay for the rush shipping, and pray it makes it here on time. When I get my order confirmation, I hit the tracking button.

It’s going to make it here today. Problem is, I’m working late shift and won’t be here to get it. And I won’t have time to come home and change, so I’m changing at work.

*sad trombone*

Now I need a plan B. But I always have a plan B, and I’m gonna look great tonight despite not having my original dress I ordered.

You’ll see that look Friday! πŸ™‚

Have a safe and happy New Year!

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Glossybox Review: Yuletide Cheer

So I got my December Glossybox, all wrapped up like a precious gift:

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Fancy!

πŸ™‚

And of course, so are the contents:

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I was so excited I didn’t even want to move my laptop out of the way!

Do you see the wealth of goodies here? I keep telling y’all, go get yourselves a Glossybox, you won’t be disappointed! Here’s the lineup of products:

Nuxe Masque Creme Fraiche De Beaute: I actually have heard of this before, and it’s lovely. It’s a moisturizing mask, and it leaves your skin very velvety. I have super oily skin until the dead of winter, so this helps to give my skin a drink of water.

Rituals Cosmetics Miracle Scrub: So, I actually hoped this was for my face (I LOVE a good face scrub), but this is for the hands. No worries, I like a good hand scrub too, especially before doing the weekly manicure. It’s a nice scrub, not too heavily scented. And it left my hands like butter.

Ciate Mini Paint Pot in Yule Rules: OMG BLUE SPARKLY POLISH. Which, ok, I need more nail polish like I need a hole in my head, but it’s so pretty!

Toni & Guy Leave In Conditioner: naturally I get this right after I’ve washed and conditioned my hair for the week. But a heads (heh) up: you can always use leave in conditioner as a styling aid (detangler) in between washings. So I’ll be using this before I twist my hair up this week. It smells really clean, which is nice.

And finally: BellaPierre Cosmetics Mineral Lipstick in Burlesque: This. Lippy. Y’all. Listen. A few Glossyboxes ago, I had a chance to try out their lip gloss, and I loved it. And I can tell you this lipstick is everything. Look:

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It’s still on my hand at the time of this writing, and I did the dishes before I started writing. Serious staying power. Can’t wait to wear this out! It’s a semi-matte finish, very moisturizing.

And that’s the roundup for this month! I’m loving everything here, and I’m gonna have to track down the rest of BellaPierre’s products. I think I’m in love!

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Holiday Look Book: Sparkle and Shine

‘Tis the season for being with family and friends, enjoying good food and company.

But you want to look lovely doing it, right? Of course!

And that’s where I come in. I have a round-up of pretty things to wear to your holiday shindigs this year!

Let’s get to it!

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From Monif C.

This is actually a set (you have to get the top and skirt separately) but how cute is this? Sexy, yet understated, it’s perfect for after work cocktails.

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From Qristyl Frazier Designs.

Yes, please. Because all of the sparkle! Maybe you don’t want to wear this to Christmas dinner with Nana, but you’ll be smoking on New Year’s Eve. Shine on!

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From Monif C.

I love this for a company party. Formfitting, but still covered with a little flair. Work appropriate, but you don’t feel so buttoned up.

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From Rebdolls.

Dressy, going out to a restaurant type of party. It’s cold up here in NY, and this gives a little more coverage on the bottom while being bundled up top on the way to the venue. Once inside, let your shoulders show!

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From Eloquii.

Yes please, part 2. I love sequins, I can’t lie. This is an option with cap sleeves instead of a long one. Very dance friendly!

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From Rebdolls.

Can I just say I want this for myself? Cause I really want this for myself. Maybe when I’m done Christmas crafting/shopping/baking. Anyway, I love this for either casual (just change the shoes, add a sweater+belt) or dressy (high heels+clutch). Super versatile, and great if you’re looking for something that can be used more than just for a party.

And that’s it! I hope I gave you some lovely outfit inspiration this year, and hopefully gave you some ideas on how to treat yourself!

Making it a homemade Christmas? Tomorrow I’ll show you what I’m working on, and give you a recipe for my homemade shea butter. See you then!

Retail Therapy Shopping

Getting Crafty: The Christmas Edition, Part 1

I’ve already gotten myself a present this year, so I’m looking to find some supplies to make my friends, family, and coworkers some nice things for Christmas.

Normally, I get my staff little things to show my appreciation. This year, the size of both my store and staff has doubled, so I won’t be able to purchase a lot. But I do enjoy making and baking things, so this year, I’m looking to do some crafty things that come from the heart and can keep me under my budget.

One of my favorite crafting sites, hands down, is Darby Smart. Not only can you get kits to work from, they also have a separate craft store section that you can purchase additional odds and ends from. I’m looking to get this:

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You’ll recognize at least one of the pieces here; I did the clear clutch for my birthday earlier this year. I’m also looking to get this:

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Homemade Soap Kit!

Bath and body gifts are my favorite gifts, especially if one took the time to find my favorite scents. While this kit comes with a scent, I’ll probably use some essential oils in it to customize the smell. I’ll also be making a shea butter cream to go with the soaps–(quick recipe: shea butter, carrier oil(s) (can be olive, sweet almond, vitamin e, or all of those plus more), and coconut oil. Mix with mixer until creamy. You can also add essential oils (a few drops will do) if you want it scented. I promise to put up a proper recipe when I get the proportions down!)

I’m also going to bake. Baking always manages to bring me to my happy place, and my brownies seem to bring everyone else to their happy places. So, I’ll be baking up boxes of delicious for the rest of my store staff and my landlords (they’re getting a Cardamom Spice Pound Cake.)

Whoa. I have a lot to get making! But it never feels like labor–I love to create and make people happy with my creations. πŸ˜€

Anyone else out there making it a do-it-yourself holiday? Have any great crafting places I can get supplies from? Leave them in the comments!

Crafting Retail Therapy Shopping

#BlackOutFriday

Happy Thanksgiving, my US loves! I hope it is a day filled with food and fun, or if you’re working like me, a day where customers don’t make you want to break things. πŸ™‚

Now, in the States, one of the biggest family traditions around this time of year, after carving up the turkey, is to go shopping and get all types of gifts and goodies.

I normally try to put together a whole post of places I’m shopping for Black Friday, to help y’all get some great deals. And I still intend on doing that today, but with a bit of a twist.

First, some background:

If you haven’t heard about the Michael Brown case, go here for some good information. Monday, the nation (and world) received word that his murderer, Officer Darren Wilson, would not be brought up on charges. And this started a string of protests, one of which is called Black Out Friday. Essentially, folks of color are not going to shop at the big box retailers (Target, WalMart, etc) and are instead either not shopping at all for Black Friday or are patronizing Black-owned businesses.

I am in the latter camp. I won’t get into the social and political implications of Wilson not being brought up on charges, but I am willing to protest in any way that I can. And since I am in a position to do so with my dollars, I will.

So, this year, I’m spending my dollars Black. It’s a small gesture, but one I do in solidarity with the Brown family.

If you’re participating in #BlackOutFriday as well, Huffington Post has a good list of businesses here, and Afrobella built upon that list here. I found some great sample sales and deals on my Instagram, which I’m going to share with you now.

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Girl With Curves has amazing style, and now an amazing line. If you’ve been wanting to pick up a piece or two, now is the time to do so! I’m eyeing this dress. Gorgeous!

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I love this brand for their quirky, cheeky t-shirts. If you’ve been waiting to get your hands on my I Wear What I Want crop tee, get online tomorrow to score this and some other new designs!

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If you’re looking to do your shopping in person, and you happen to be in NYC for the weekend, TruDiva Designs is having a sample sale on Saturday! I’ve loved just about everything I’ve seen on the runway, and let me tell you, I am looking forward to scoring a piece or two! Go here to see her collections.

So, there you have it! A few places I’ll be shopping for the weekend. I’ll do my best to do an update as I see other deals pop up on my Instagram feed.

Oh, and if you do decide to go shopping on Black Friday (no judgment here, seriously!), please be nice to the employees and to each other. Keep in mind that no item is worth sacrificing being polite.

Happy shopping and Happy Thanksgiving!

Retail Therapy Shopping

Fatshionista Cooks: Hatchery Tasting Box Review

Hello my lovelies!

I am back with a review of deliciousness.

It’s Thanksgiving week here in the States, otherwise known as “Eat all of the things and Buy all of the things week.”

We’ll discuss the buy all of the things aspect later on this week, but for today? Today is about eating all of the things.

So, I love to cook. I really love to cook. Part of the reason I even have cable is for Food Network and the Cooking Channel. I have a list of food bloggers that I love to visit regularly to get new ideas on what to try next.

And it was from The Kitchenista (the AMAZING chef that runs The Kitchenista Diaries) that I saw that there was a subscription box for cooks called Hatchery. Needless to say, I was quite intrigued.

I finally took the time to order one, and it came today. The best part about foodie subscription boxes is that you don’t have to wait to see if it works, like with beauty things. You can just eat it and know immediately if it’s the best! Here’s what I got:

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All wrapped up in brown paper…

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And all of the goodies!

Each box comes with a tasting guide that gives information about the folks who make the edibles, and even give recipes that showcase each sample sized ingredient. I received Whole Spice Paella Spice Mix (I can smell it through the baggie and OMG, y’all), Bill’s Best BBQ Sauce, Glico’s Pasta Gravy (gravy=sauce), Mustard and Co.Mustard sauce, Other Brother Olive Oil, and Potlicker Kitchen Spiced Wine Jelly. The Paella Spice Mix is going in my black beans. It has a smoky smell (smoked paprika, mmm) that I know will work well with them. Can’t wait to hook it up and report back!

I’ll totally give you the recipe for the black beans if y’all want it, by the way. It involves a slow cooker and not standing over a stove. Always the best recipe, in my book.

Now, I’m off to finish my sweet potato pies. My coworkers heard I bake an amazing one…and so now I’m baking four. πŸ˜€

Fatshionista Cooks Retail Therapy Reviews Shopping

Baby, It’s Cold Outside: 5 Coats I’m Loving This Season

Naturally, I’m writing this when it’s a balmy 60 degrees outside.

NYC, please pick a season. *side eye*

Anyhow! I love coats, and even coat weather. I use them like accessories, mixing and matching them with my outfits like I do my shoes and bag. This year, there are so many different coats to love and play around with. Here’s a look at what I’m loving so much this year.

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From Lane Bryant.

Peacoats make me happy. Wool peacoats make my body happy (and warm), and a wool ombre peacoat? Clothing nirvana! I have to wear black to work every day, so I try to make my outerwear as not-black as I can. This fits the bill. Also, I’d want to do my nails to match.

Don’t judge me! πŸ˜€

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From Eloquii.

Char, didn’t you JUST say that–

Yes. I did say I like my outerwear to be as not-black as possible. But do you see how cute this is?! This would be more of a special occasion/going out somewhere fancy type of coat. And as much as I hate to admit it: fancy wear tends towards black because it’s classic. I’d probably switch up the belt or make a new sash to go with it and coordinate it with my outfits, though.

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From Simply Be.

Y’all, I really, REALLY want a cape. Now, when it finally does decide to get and stay cold up here in NYC, it’s probably not going to be the most practical without plenty of layers. So why even want it? Arm room! I have large arms, and I have to often size my tops and coats to fit them, at the expense of fit everywhere else. Capes help alleviate that problem, as there’s plenty of arm room, so I can still get a really nice fit everywhere else. As for the layering, I’m always putting a giant sweater under my coat, so that wouldn’t be an issue.

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From Torrid.

I also really want a moto jacket. This is more appropriate for the weird shifty weather we’re having now. Not only that, it also feeds the tough tomboy side of me, while still being elegant. This is another coat I wouldn’t mind doing in all black, because it just adds to the bad-ass persona.

Hey, dress for the personality you have, or the personality you want! (Or both!)

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From Old Navy.

Normally, if I’m looking for a coat on a budget, I head to Old Navy. Now, they don’t carry plus sizes in the store (*side eye*), but I’ve had great success getting the 2xl (and no issues with the arms). This particular coat comes from the plus size collection, and I just got it in the mail a couple of days ago. I got the 4x, thinking about layering, and I could have just as easily done the 3 or even 2x and had plenty of room for both my arms AND my chunky sweaters. I picked this up because of the hood. When the wind whips around up here it can cause an instant migraine, and my ‘fro is starting to get too big for a proper hat. This hood is nice and warm, and it keeps the wind out of my face. Also handy for the snowy days that will soon be upon us.

So there you have it! My picks for elegant and warm coats for the season. Coming up soon: boots!

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