Peace, Love and a Bag that Does Good

A bag that is stylish and does good?  One of each, please.  GAIA (which refers to the Goddess of the Earth in Greek Mythology) was founded in 2009.  They create handcrafted accessories by female refugee artisans.  This gingham pom-pom bag was inspired by Moroccan pouches.  Each pom-pom is handmade.  It comes with a hand signed hang tag and is available in three colors.   I also picked up the pom-pom hair tie.  Check out the tassel earrings as well.  You can read about how Jenna Lyons first learned about GAIA and how the bags, hair ties and tassel earrings ended up in the in J. Crew stores here.  Check out all the GAIA for J. Crew offerings here.

I styled the bag with a dress that is the same cut as my favorite from last year with a lace -up neckline  instead of a collar.  Take a look at how I styled last year’s dresses in: Chambray, Sunset and Sequins, Coral and stripes, and One-Step Gingham.


J. Crew Lace Up Shirt Dress

GAIA for J. Crew Bag

J. Crew Sandals (similar here)

Happy Shopping!



Thank You Jenna

When I started my blog almost a year ago I featured a lot of J. Crew because it was what was in my closet.  The initial inspiration for even making my Instagram public six months before was the shinyponies contest.  I feature other brands here and there, but it was the J. Crew fan community and Jenna Lyons herself that kept me going.

Thank you Jenna

Thank you for validating my obsession with leopard print.  I have always loved it.  You made it more accessible.   I have been calling it a neutral since I can remember.

Thank you for making the high/low mix so cool.

Thank you for living your life on your own terms (in the public eye).

Thank you for teaching us how to cuff a sleeve (even if I don’t quite have it).

Thank you for embracing the imperfect and making things interesting.

Thank you for the pattern mix.

Thank you for being a role model for young women, young men, boys and girls.

Thank you for showing us that any look can be pulled off with the right amount of confidence.

I look forward to your next act.  Please keep sharing your style and inspiring us all.



Shoes Tell the Story

October 7th was the six month mark for my blog.  And, it’s been about a year since I made my Instagram profile public.  I was intrigued by the J. Crew #SHINYPONIES Contest, where I posted and hashtagged photos of my shoes for the chance to win a year of shoes curated by Jenna Lyons each month.  I was determined to win and so excited when my first photo was chosen for J. Crew’s #SHINYPONIES page on  I have since had over 20 photos selected for the #SHINYPONIES page.  Here are a few of them with links to the J. Crew #SHINYPONIES page and purchasing information linked below the grid.

Leopard / New Balance / StripesPom-Poms / Stripes / Leopard / New Balance / Paisley / Gold

The best moment of this social media journey happened last week when I woke up to a number of  notifications from J. Crew letting me know that my photos were selected for one of their posts.  One of their selections was a photo taken by my six-year old. I beamed with pride and could not wait for him to wake up so I could tell him.  He has recently been helping with some of my Mani Friday photos, too.  Sharing this love of photography with my six year-old son has been a blast.  He has an amazing eye when it comes to shooting with just the iPhone.

My Six Year Old’s First #SHINYPONIES Photo

As a child I enjoyed photography and my high school class was one of my favorites.  I liked taking self portraits (long before selfies) that were artistic because I liked that I could control the art in front of and behind the camera simultaneously.  The logistics were harder with the timer.

In college I took an Art History course on Photography and it was among my favorite classes.  It was nice contrast with my Economics major.  Cindy Sherman was one of my favorites. She was a big influence, especially her Untitiled Film Still series .  I recently saw the Cindy Sherman Imitation of Life exhibit at The Broad  and I could not help but snap this selfie in front of a photo of her playing all four roles.


Combining my love of shoes with photography was a no brainer when it came to the #SHINYPONIES contest.  I already had a shoe obsession and it was fun to feed it by photographing shoes.

I have always said that shoes can tell the story of your life. Yesterday I featured a pair from a 2005 trip to Antwerp in Antwerp Memories and Pink Cherries.  They have walked with you through experiences.  In my case, I almost always buy a pair on vacation.  Then when I put them on I remember Paris or Antwerp or Hawaii.  When I did not win the #SHINYPONIES contest, I was disappointed, of course , but not discouraged. I decided to just keep on going.  Six months later I started this blog.  I wrote about where the name came from in It all started in Paris with these shoes….  I really need to thank  J. Crew and Jenna Lyons for the inspiration to document my love of shoes as art in a whole new way.



This is not a sponsored post, in fact none of my posts have been sponsored (so far).  I will definitely make that clear when the time comes.

Party Pants

Jenna Lyons dubbed these pants “party pants”. (Jenna’s current picks are here).  I could not agree more.  They are so fun and have this cool, modern seventies vibe.  I feel like entertaining in a a sunken living room with a wet bar and serving tropical drinks. This may be my favorite piece in the whole Ratti “Into the Wild” collection.  The pants are linen and a great cut.  They have been sold out, but keep popping back.  As of blog press time, there were a few sizes available.  It may be worth a bit of stalking if at first you get the dreaded “We’re sorry. This item has been so popular, it has sold out.”




J. Crew Top

J. Crew “Into the Wild” Pants

J. Crew Shoes

Happy Shopping!