Feeling overwhelmed? Try this!

Ever put off something that is kind of important?

Maybe for like, a day?

A week?

A whole year?

::raises hand slowly:: 

I can be super forgetful, especially about things that are pressing. And ESPECIALLY about things that are NOT work related.

My brain is clogged with a ton lists. To do, to buy, to drop off, to pick up, to order, to clean, to share, to try, to post… I mean, it is endless. And also really hard to keep track of when I try to manage it all in 1000 open tabs on the browser also known as my mind.

When I have all of these thoughts and ideas floating around in my head it’s easily to forget some of them.

It is also just as easy to get overwhelmed. My mind goes wild and I get anxious. When I have so much to tackle and so many things I want to explore I honestly sometimes can’t breathe until I get them all down on paper.

Enter my go-to strategy for feeling less anxious- the brain dump!

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What exactly is a brain dump? 

I am sure you are wondering, “what is a brain dump and how is this different from a to do list, Stephanie?”

​A brain dump is essentially putting a pen to paper and quite literally, spilling its contents onto the page. You are getting it ALL OUT so you can have clarity. Both on what needs to get done AND mental clarity so you can feel less overwhelmed.

Brain dumps differ from to-do lists in the sense that a brain dump can be things you need to do, but also things you want to try or simply ideas you have that you don’t want to forget!

When would you do a brain dump? 

I use brain dumps all the time for different reasons! Here are a few examples…

⚬ When I simply have reached the point where I can’t breathe and I need to visually see all of the things I have been meaning to get done, no matter what time frame they have to happen in.

⚬  When I am about to go on vacation and I need to get organized on what to pack, my agenda and what I still need to book, reserve or order.

⚬ When I need to clean/organize my house. This is a big one for me because I hate clutter. I actually just did a brain dump on this and some of the things I jotted down were: organize linen closet, change sheets, fold laundry, put away laundry, clear out closets and donate clothes.

⚬ When I am planning a party or an event.

⚬ When I need to get organized on my content. I will often use a brain dump to write down ideas for blog posts, captions, photos and live videos.

How can you organize a brain dump? 

There are so many ways to dump- and none of them are wrong. Some people like a plain sheet of paper with no separation of thoughts. I have done it this way in the past, and although it does get the job done, I still feel a bit unorganized because there is no order to what I write.

After years of dumping I feel like I have found a great system. I use a piece of paper separated into quadrants.

Sometimes I label the quadrants (I’ll give you ideas for this below) and sometimes I don’t because my brain dump is a more general one (like when I have a ton of random tasks that I need to get done). But generally speaking four quadrants is enough space for me to not only dump everything but also allows for general organization of thoughts. I can then go on to make smaller to-do lists out of my quadrants if I need to.

How can I label my brain dump?

I find quadrants to be super helpful. They allow me to focus and even sometimes jog my memory so I don’t forget anything!

Here are a few ways you can label your quads: 
-To do, to buy, to try, to get rid of
-Today, this week, this month, this year
-Immediate, soon, later, down the road
-Urgent, important, less important, least important
Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter
-Family, business, side gig, self care
-1st quarter, 2nd quarter, 3rd quarter, 4th quarter

You can also make your own more specific labels like this real-life example I use before a trip…
To pack, to book/reserve, to buy, to organize

Or, if you just need to get it all out, don’t label the quadrants at all – just have at it!

As you can see, I am preeeeeety enthusiastic about brain dumps! It is truly the number one way I gain clarity and stay focused! That’s why I am sharing my free brain dump printable (which is perfectly separated into four quadrants!).

I hope it helps you tackle everything from giving the dog a bath to crushing goals at work!

Starter Makeup Kit from Sephora

Recently I have been getting a lot of messages asking which products are the best to build a basic makeup kit. Here are my favorites that will help you master a perfect look, day or night!

I’ve also included a few pro tips on how to apply products and how to get your makeup to last all night!

To make shopping easier, all of these products are available through Sephora!

SIMPLE MAKEUP STARTER KIT  MUSEPH

ONE 

Benefit Gimme Brow is the easiest, most fool-proof way to fill in your brows! I love the easy to use wand which is packed with a fiber-gel that will shape, define and fill in your brows for a natural, realistic look.

TWO 

Too Faced Soleil Bronzer has been a staple in my professional kit for years. It is a gorgeous matter bronzer (no shimmer or sparkle here!) that is never orange. Plus it smells like chocolate.

THREE

If you follow my blog or my Instagram/Facebook you probably have seen me rave about this tinted moisturizer before. Years after first discovering this product I am still loving it. Laura Mercier’s lightweight, oil free tinted moisturizer is a great alternative to foundation. It feels fresh on the skin, plus it has SPF 20!

FOUR

If you are searching for a new foundation I would suggest you try out Luminous Silk by Armani! This is unlike traditional “heavy” foundation formulas– it is lightweight, buildable and doesn’t crack, dry out or look chalky. The end result of a few thin layers is a gorgeous “airbrushed” dewy finish. I love applying this foundation with a damp beauty blender.

FIVE 

Urban Decay’s setting spray should be the last step you take when applying makeup. It will ensure that your artistry stays put even through heat and sweat. If you’re still using that old “hairspray” trick (you know who you are!!) use this instead. It is much better for your skin! This is also a staple in my pro kit– I can’t be without it!

SIX 

There is nothing worse than mastering the perfect eye look… and then have your shadow creasing after just a few hours. Using an eye primer will help your shadow go on smoother, more vibrant and last much longer. I love Urban Decay’s formula because it is not drying or chalky. Whenever you apply shadow be sure to PRIME with this product FIRST.

SEVEN

The secret to preventing foundation from settling into fine lines is to first use a primer designed for large pores and/or fine lines (I like this one from Makeup Forever). After you prime your entire face, apply foundation and THEN SET IT with a translucent setting powder. I love the texture and finish of Laura Mercier’s Translucent Loose Powder. It looks white but it goes on sheer and will work on all skin tones. Apply with a fluffy brush or a powder puff.

EIGHT 

I have purchased several of this concealers in 2015 and I am positive I will be purchasing more in the coming year! I love this creamy, easy to blend formula from NARS. It not only covers and conceals dark circles but it is wonderful for highlighting. Be sure to SET your concealer with powder (mentioned above in number seven) to prevent creasing and settling into fine lines.

NINE

Speaking of highlighting! Some days all you’ll want to wear is concealer and mascara (note- I didn’t include mascara here because I find that drugstore brands are just as wonderful as anything you can get in Sephora. Try this one and I promise you will think the same!). Other times you’ll want to be full on GLAM. That is where this product comes into play. I am obsessed with Becca highlighters but this shade in particular is so gorgeous. It is a cross between a rose gold and a moonstone. Apply a little bit top the top of your cheeks, nose, chin and cupid’s bow for a “lit from within” glow.

TEN

Blush can sometimes seem intimidating. Where to apply? Which brush to use? Is that hot pink really going to look good on me? Not to worry– NARS blush is easy to apply and the shades are super complimentary. Orgasm, Sin and Dolce Vita are some of my favorites. Apply with an angled blush brush.

ELEVEN 

I have mentioned this Tarte palette on STYLEgloss once before. Can you tell I love it?? The shades are all you need to create daytime, nighttime, natural and dramatic looks. All of the shadows are matte, which will make blending much easier. The middle row contain four of my all-time most favorite colors to use on eyes. This is the only palette you will ever need. Apply shadow in the crease with a fluffy brush and shadow on the lid with a stiffer, flat brush.

TWELVE 

Finally, top it all off with a great lip color! I love these Sephora lip creams. They last all day, are not drying and are only $14! Numbers 5, 13 an 14 are my personal favorites.

Do you have a product from Sephora that you love? Let me know about it!

#STYLEglossblog

My favorite makeup products of 2015!

Here are most favorite makeup products of 2015! A mix of stand-by staples and new additions have made the list, and I am sure you will love them as well. Whether you are still searching for the perfect gift or want to create a fabulous New Years Eve look, these products are going to get the job done!

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ONE 

Hands down the most beautiful foundation! A dewy formula allows it to lay gorgeously on the skin and give an airbrushed finished. A bit of an investment but worth it for special days/events.

TWO 

I have been suggesting this lip color all year long, and for a good reason! It is long-lasting and the color is the perfect shade of on-trend mauve. It happens to also look great on many different skin tones.

THREE

Loreal’s Infallible shadows are some of the drugstore’s most highly pigmented, high performing cosmetics. I love how smooth and creamy these powder shadows are. Iced Latte is my favorite shade right now, but they are all beautiful, rich metallic shades.

FOUR

NARS blush has been a staple in both my person and professional kit for years. My favorite shades include Orgasm (great for all skin tones), Deep Throat, and Angelika.

FIVE

A fluffy, full powder brush is a makeup-bag necessity! Use it for contouring, bronzer, setting powder or finishing powder. Sigma was one of my favorite brands to purchase brushes from in 2015.

SIX 

Marc Jacobs has managed to create a refreshing, hydrating primer that not only smoothes the skin but keeps it feeling fresh all day long. Makeup will stay on longer and your skin will look more youthful.

SEVEN

This is my current favorite palette. I have been suggesting this one to my clients for weeks now because the colors are neutral yet on trend. It makes a perfect gift for the makeup-lover in your life. The mix of mattes and shimmers will help them create countless looks.

EIGHT

Setting your foundation and concealer is key to extending the life and longevity of your handiwork. I love the feel of Laura Mercier’s translucent powder– so silky! It will prevent creasing and cracking and create a smoother surface for brush, bronzer and highlighter.

NINE

Speaking of highlighters… this is by FAR my absolute favorite. I just discovered it a few months ago and it has replaced my holy-grail highlighter in my pro kit. Perfect for that New Year’s Eve glow!

What makeup products have you used and reused all year long?

@STYLEglossblog or @StephanieLindaArtistry

Happy New Year!

Easy Holiday Entertaining

I’m back! We are finally all settled in our new home. I promise that I will post photos and some details on my decor very soon. Thanks for patiently waiting for the next STYLEgloss!

All this packing and unpacking made me forget just how close we are to the holiday season— I mean Halloween is less than a week away. That means Thanksgiving is right around the corner and so are all the fixings that come along with it.

I really enjoy entertaining and cooking for a crowd, although I admit it sometimes does get overwhelming. Whether you are hosting your family’s annual Thanksgiving feast or just inviting a few friends over for wine and cheese I have some great tips and products to make it all a bit easier. Here are my picks for entertaining and ideas on simple get-togethers– any excuse for a party!

D E C O R

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Creating a beautiful Pinterest-inspired tablescape can not only be super time consuming but it also not always practical. If you are serving a big meal you still want lots of room for all your serving platters and place settings. In this case I think less is more. I love the soft ambient lighting that you can only achieve with candles. This five piece flameless set is awesome because you can create a beautiful centerpiece of scatted tablescape just by adding a few silk leaves or flowers. Flameless also gives you piece of mind not having to worry about any of your gusts knocking into them as they pass the turkey.

A  S I M P L E  S T A R T

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A cheese board is the ultimate appetizer for any get together. Something as simple as cheese and crackers can be elevated to an elegant starter just through presentation. This cheese board serving set is convenient and takes the guess work out how to create a beautiful display. Keep cheese, crackers and a bottle of wine on hand throughout the season so that you can throw together this simple board when unexpected company drops in.

Host tip: When creating a charcuterie and cheese platter you want to maintain balance. Select 3-5 varieties of cheese (hard, creamy, nutty, sharp- the more variation the better) and pair with cold meats like prosciutto, speck or salami.  Add salty cured olives, nuts or grapes plus crostini to complete the platter. 

W I G G L E  R O O M

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This foldable cart is perfect if your kitchen is lacking in extra counter space or you just need a little extra room. It stores flat so it takes up virtually no room when you are no using it. Create a baking station closer to your oven or use it as a coffee and dessert cart. It is super affordable and comes in four colors!

Host Tip: How fun would it be to roll in a cart filled with sweets from top to bottom when it is time for dessert? Display cakes, cookies, candy and mini pastries on the top two shelves and dessert plates, forks and knives on the bottom. 

S W E E T  E N D I N G

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If your home is anything like mine, holidays are always associated with baking– a lots of it! Create beautifully decorated cookies and cakes with these insanely easy to use silicone decorating bottles and tips. I love using these on even the simplest of cupcakes to make them feel just a little bit more special.

Host Tip: Bake box mix cupcakes in pretty holiday-themed liners. Pipe store bought frosting onto each cake using one of the bottles and tips from the set above. Finish with sparkly sprinkles like these to dress up your average cupcake! 

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Harry London chocolates are essentially synonymous with the holiday season. This pretty tin filled with delicious buckeyes is a fun way to serve a sweet treat after dinner or makes a great hostess gift if you are visiting friends. I like to keep a few on hand each year.

E X C E P T I O N A L  S E R V I C E

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This pumpkin tureen does double duty- it looks pretty on your table and it can also be used as a:

 wine chiller– just add ice.

punch bowl– try this apple pie sangria recipe!

 self-service soup pot– be sure to place a bowl at each table setting.

centerpiece– add silk or fresh flowers.

S P O T  O N

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How adorable is this teapot? It is a piece that you can keep on your cooktop all year long but also is a beautiful way to serve your guests tea during dessert.

G E T  C O O K I N’

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Allow me to introduce you to the world’s best kitchen sidekick– The Ninja! You can use this as a stovetop, a slow cooker or a roaster. Slow cooking allows you to free up your oven (especially if your turkey or ham is hogging all the real estate) and helps to pace your prep prior to dinner. I use my slow cooker at least once a week in the winter– it is a great kitchen staple that you won’t regret investing in.

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Many of you may already have a KitchenAid mixer and you know just how easy it makes life. If you don’t have one or need to upgrade my advice is… do it! You will be so happy you did.

S I M P L E  G A T H E R I N G S

Here are a few fun ideas for fall and holiday soirees…

pumpkin carving party 

potluck friends-giving

harvest dinner

holiday cookie exchange 

gift wrapping get together

What tips or tools make your life easier during the holiday season? Share them with me! #STYLEglossblog.

STYLEgloss x Stephanie Linda Artistry Fall Makeup Report

If you follow me on social media or if you are an avid reader of this blog you will know that in addition to serving up style trends, I am a professional makeup artist. Makeup artistry is my true passion and I feel so extremely lucky to have such a thriving business with a fiercely loyal following– similarly to the amazing following I have here on STYLEgloss (thank you to all of my readers and clients!! You have no idea how much I love and appreciate you!).

Although many of you already knew that I am a makeup artist, most do not know that I have a M.A. in Journalism. I also owned a clothing store on Long Island for three years before I was a full-time, professional artist. I wanted to create an outlet for myself to combine my love for fashion, makeup and writing in a world where they could all coexist beautifully. Thus, STYLEgloss was born! I get really excited when I can combined these facets, especially when I talk about makeup on this blog! Today’s post is all about fall trends and how to wear them!

So for all of my STYLEgloss readers, meet Stephanie Linda Artistry and for all of my SLA clients, meet STYLEgloss! 

Now that the introductions are over, let’s get to the good stuff!

It feels like fall has finally arrived here in New York. Have you switched over to fall hues in your makeup bag yet? Here are a few helpful tips to tackle the trends!
Lashes + Lips

A simple eye look (mascara and liner) and a deep lip is a super easy way to create a fall look. Here are some of my favorite lipsticks for fall and my all time favorite mascaras for any time of year.

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Makeup Forever Intense #14, MAC Dark Side, Maybelline Touch of SpiceRevlon Black CherryBobbi Brown Chocolate Berry, NYX Whipped Caviar, Milani Sangria, Kat Von D Homegirl

Kat Von D Homegirl is similar to what is on this model’s lips [below]

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Top Mascara Picks

  

Benefit They’re Real!, Maybelline Push Up Mascara, Wet N Wild Max Volume

Bold Brows 
A bold but shapely brow is always on trend. Fill them in the foolproof way with Benefit’s Gimmie Brow. This tiny tube is packed with a brush-on fiber gel that not only fills in sparse brows but sets them in place. Also great is Anastasia’s Dip Brow, which requires a little more time and skill but also stays in place all day long. If you already have pretty full brows you can keep them shaped and in place with a clear brow gel like this one from NYX or this formula from Laura Mercier.

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Flawless Face

Fall means that you will most likely have to change your foundation shade as our sun kissed tans fade away. If you think that you can get away with wearing your deeper shade (or wearing your lighter shade in the summer when you are tan), think again! The wrong shade of foundation will make you seem like you are wearing a mask and look super unnatural!

Sephora is a great place to shop if you need help selecting your shade. Not only are the salespeople helpful but they will also make a sample for your to take home. My best advice is to ask for two shades and apply them in natural light to see which shade is best. If you purchase the wrong shade you can always return your opened or used cosmetics to Sephora for a full refund.  Drugstores like CVS and Rite Aid have similar policies and will allow you to return cosmetics with a receipt.

Fall and winter months are typically times where you may experience some dry patches on your face. Be sure to moisturize everyday, even if you do not wear foundation. If you are super dry look for formulas that have a “luminous” or “dewy” finish which are usually more hydrating. Here are some foundations that I love and have a wide range of shades.

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What trend or shade are you most excited to wear this fall? Tell me in the comments or #STYLEglossblog or #StephanieLindaArtistry!

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Fall Makeup Basics

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Fall means hayrides, pumpkins and crisp air.

But more importantly, it means that you can finally wear dark colors on your lips and tips again.

That makes me happy.

I am teaching a fall makeup class this coming Thursday. As a preview I posted this pic of the look my students will be learning and it caught like wildfire. There were lots of questions so I am here to answer them for you guys!

The lip color I used in the photo is Sephora’s Cream Lip Stain in #13, “Marvelous Mauve.” It’s GORG and I can’t wait to rock it all season. I originally made the trip to Sephora to pick up Kat Von D’s liquid lipstick in “Lolita” but my store were sold out, which actually turned out to be a good thing since it led me to discover these amazing cream stains. Nonetheless, Lolita looks just like this color above and it is also super pretty, so I linked it below for you guys incase you wanted to check that one out too!

There were also TONS of questions about my foundation. I have on L’Oreal Pro Matte in #102. This is a pretty thick, full coverage formula. Some days I apply with a damp Beauty Blender if I want less coverage. Other times, like in this photo, I apply with a stippling brush.  As far as drugstore foundations go, this one has been a constant favorite.

One of the most important steps is to prime your skin before you apply foundation. I love Hourglass’ primer because it feels so smooth and it is not sticky like many silicone-based primers.

Check out all the products I used to create this look. If you have any beauty related questions feel free to get in touch on Facebook or Instagram!

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Pillow Talk

I feel as though the major battle between husband and wife when it comes to home décor is agreeing on an appropriate number of pillows for each piece of furniture. I can’t get enough of them. Chris (and 99% of husbands around the world) find toss pillows useless.

I find that though disturbing.

Here is how I jazzed up my amazing couch from La-Z-Boy with some cute accessories.

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Pillows from left to right:

Aqua Blue Pillow– Chris and I actually made this pillow! The fabric is pre-cut from Michael’s. Pillows are easy to make! If you find fabric you love but are not sure what to do with it just ask for a yard (it is enough to make one big pillow or two smaller pillows like the one in this photo) and sew it up almost until it is closed. Stuff with plush stuffing (also at Michael’s) and sew up.

His & Hers Pillow– I picked this pillow up at T.J. Maxx about six months before we got married. It used to have a home on our bed but we recently got a new duvet and pillows that matched, so I found a new place for it! I have seen this pillow and the “Mr. & Mrs.” version floating around at Home Goods. You may still be able to find it! Here is a similar burlap style pillow from Etsy!

Orange Pom Pom Pillow– Recently picked this one up at Bed & Bath! Now is a great time to shop for throw pillows there because they have many different collections for college students. This pillow was so unique and I though it would be a great addition to the one behind it (which I also picked up at Bed & Bath). Don’t forget to bring your 20% off coupon!

Boho Print Pillow: I LOVE the print on this pillow! I wanted a boho look for my living room couch and I though that mixing and matching prints would be perfect. I stuck with an orange/red color pallet for this side of the couch. This pillow was a little expensive ($49.99) but I think it is so versatile that you can match it with many different colors or prints.

Square Printed Pillow: I just picked this one up today at the Long Beach craft fair. It is from Surf Chic Designs– check them out online! I loved all their pillows but this one was the most perfect for my couch.

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I mixed and matched patterns, colors and sizes to create a fun splash of color in my mainly neutral living room. The coffee table (which is actually a wooden wine trunk) is from Pier1 as is the tray. Here are a few of my picks for other great throw pillows!

 

Fancy Finds [at Target]

There are TONS of designer-inspired finds out there! You just need to search a little (but it also helps when you know where to look!). Here are some great items I found (for fashion and home) at Target that have a flavor to them that reminds me of Kate Spade! All of these items when were purchased today and can still be found at your local Target. Here is what I scooped up:

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From the top down:

SUGAR PAPER FOR TARGET 2014 Planner

Photo Credit: Sugar Paper Blog

Photo Credit: Sugar Paper Blog

I freaked when I saw this planner at Target today (which, by the way, was only $9.99)! For those of you who don’t know, Sugar Paper is a Los Angeles based stationary company.  Their style is very similar to J. Crew and Kate Spade and they have some of the cutest designs ever. If you know me then you know that I am a sucker for paper goods. I love notebooks, planners, personalized thank you cards- basically everything that Sugar Paper offers on their website. Items on their site range from $16 for a notebook to $96 for a pretty pink recipe box.

The Sugar Paper for Target collection features notebooks, datebooks, wall and desk calendars and mini weekly planners. Prices range from $4.99 to $14.99- great price points when compared to the original Sugar Paper products. And the polka dots make this planner feel as if I spend $50 and purchased it from Kate Spade- a fancy find indeed! Take a look at all the awesome Kate Spade polka dot products that have a similar pattern by clicking here.

GREEN ROOM mini notebooks

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These mini notebooks are SO CUTE. They are only $3.99 a pop and there are four different designs. I bought the pink and gold polka dots and the white and gold stripe. Even though these notebooks are not by Sugar Paper the white and gold one is a direct replica from Sugar Paper, which originally retails for $16!

These are perfect for keeping to-do lists, grocery lists, planning out your day or keeping a day-journal for each child or baby (color coordination makes everything easier!). If you are in college you could also use these to take notes for different classes. They are small enough that if you purchased all four they would barely take up room in your bag. The gold polka dots remind of this notebook for Kate Spade. A chic inspired find for 1/4 the price.

FLOWER BUTTON earrings

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Photo Credit: Target.com

I’ve been on the hunt for over sized button earrings like these! When I was in college there was a small jewelry vendor called Bella U that would set up a pop-up shop in the student center every few months. The owner of the company handmade earrings that looked very similar to these. I have a pair that I bought from her (along with a bunch of other awesome jewels) and I LOVE them.

These have a similar feel (I especially love that they are so substantial) and the color is SO  perfect for spring. They also come in coral (here) and ivory (here). Had I seen the ivory today I would have scooped that color up too! If flowers are not your thing but you still want to give the button style earring a try I also loved these and these. Also check out these Kate Spade earrings that look very similar to the Target find. The only difference is that mine cost $7.99 and the KS version cost $48!

Each time I step into a Target I find that I don’t leave without spending at least $50 on things that I didn’t plan on buying- I always leave with SOMETHING. If you are trying to find a designer-inspired item (no matter what department it might be in) Target is a great place to check.

My total for all three items was $25.96. That’s less than a week or Starbucks or a little more than half the price of those fancy Kate Spade flower earrings from Lord & Taylor. Not bad for some snow day cheap thrills!

One more thing before I go…

There are certainly times when I splurge on the real thing! But I think that when it comes to fashion -especially designer fashion- the time to SAVE is when you are trying a trend. Why invest in something that will be in one season and out the next? The best designer investments are the ones you make on timeless pieces like a structured, REAL leather bag, classic pearl earrings or a beautiful cashmere sweater. These are items that are worth the money because they will last and you know that they are made with care. You’ll reach for these pieces season after season so you want to be sure that they hold up!

Around the web: Self, Home, Relationship and Work in 2014

Here are some of my favorite things around the web that can help make 2014 a great year for you, no matter what your goals are.

SELF

Learn how to be a bombshell and amp up your confidence with this post from College Candy.

HOME

Finally untangle all your necklaces and display them so that you actually wear them with the help of this blog.

Start your spring cleaning a little early and get organized with help from Organized Home.

 RELATIONSHIP

Keep your sex life hot with these tips from Huffington Post.

WORK

Get ahead at work and get on the path to promotion in 2014 with tips from Lifehacker.

Never forget a meeting or a project again with an Erin Condren Life Planner- read up on

this awesome planner with a review from another blog.  

A revelation about 2014 resolutions….

With a new year comes the promise of a fresh, new start. As we turn the page on 2013 and settle into the first days of a new year, we are all thinking hard about our resolutions. If you haven’t thought about it, here’s some food for thought: What do you resolve to do in 2014? Or not to do? Or to do more of?

It’s no secret that year after year the number one resolution among Americans is to “get healthy” (loose weight, work out more, eat right…). Don’t believe me? Fine. Read up on the top 10 resolutions here.  

It is also no secret that the number one resolution that people do not follow through with is the same one that they are so hopeful and dedicated to on the first of the year. By the third Friday of January most people will have given up or failed at the promise to take better care of their health. What, you don’t believe that either?

All of this negativity surrounding resolutions got me thinking about how we can all follow through with goals in the upcoming year. When you tell someone about your goals for 2014, no matter if they are health related or otherwise, you will probably receive snarky remarks and commentary about how “that’ll never last.” Don’t fret!

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Prove everyone wrong (and maybe even the tiny voice inside your head that shows up just in time to doubt your abilities during time of weakness) with a few easy but super helpful tips for making those resolutions last until 2015– or even further!

To start…

If you think of your resolution in weekly goals instead of a “year long project” you will feel less daunted by the tasks at hand. Rather than saying “I plan to loose 40 pounds this year” try breaking that weight loss up into small milestones. Set smaller goals in the beginning (say, one pound per week for the first three weeks) and then increase your goal as you go. If you are patient and remember that a slower yet steady and consistent pace will win the race then you will meet your goals in what will feel like no time! 

Top tip…

Keep a journal! Whether you are planning to loose weight, eat more vegetables, learn to play an instrument, try new recipes, learn to knit– whatever your resolution is, if you write it down you will be more motivated to continue! Write down all your goals (weekly, monthly and yearly) on the first page. Seeing your goals can help you manifest them.

Each time you work toward achieving your goal write down what you did, how you did it and what you might have learned.  When you hit a goal (IE: losing two pounds, learned to play a full song, completed a Pinterest project) dedicate a whole page to your milestone. Seeing your progress will motivate you to continue!

If you have a mishap… 

We all mess up. It’s human nature. But don’t fall into the trap of excuses! If you have a sugary, fattening breakfast and continue to eat poorly throughout the day because you “already messed up so might as well indulge…” you are only digging a deeper hole. Think of your breakfast as a small pothole- you can still walk out of the hole on your own. The more “indulgent” behavior your engage in the deeper your hole will become. Eventually you will be standing in a trench and won’t be able to pull yourself out. It’s better to stop while you’re ahead and can still walk away. You can apply this metaphor to any goal, big or small.

Stay focused… 

Follow accounts on social media that have similar interests in mind. For example, seeing healthy recipes, before and after photos and others who are trying to loose weight on your Instagram feed can motivate you. If your goal is to cook more follow popular chefs on Facebook. Keep a file of crafts you want to tackle or start pinning them to a board on Pinterest.  If you are ever at a lost for a way to continue with your goal or can’t think of a healthy, quick dinner you will have an arsenal already built up for those times when you just feel like jumping off the wagon.

I hope these tips will help you achieve some fantastic things in 2014. Here are a few of my own goals:

Cook some of the recipes I have pinned! 

Blog more frequently 

Organize my closet 

Donate some of my shoes and clothes 

What is your resolution? Leave it in the comments!

One more thing before I go… 

“People need revelation, and then they need resolution.”

– Damian Lewis

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