Cute and Glam Dresses by Three Floor

Cute and Glam Dresses by Three Floor

Three Floor Dresses. From L to R: Feverish Dress, Fan Club Dress, City Lights Dress, La Noir Dress

Cute and Glam Dresses by Three Floor

Is it just me or is there an influx of new, more creative and innovative dress designers lately? Not long ago I highlighted the amazing Self-Portrait brand and now, once again thanks to Revolve Clothing, I’ve discovered Three Floor. I was captivated by their creativity just about as much as I was with Self-Portrait, but these have more of a pretty, delicate, feminine look to many of them. I dig them just the same though! I’m not normally a dresses gal (I’m glued to my jeans), but every now and then I like a nice dress if the day is hot enough or if an occasion calls for it.

Cute and Glam Dresses by Three Floor

Three Floor at Revolve Clothing. From L to R: Heart You Dress, Fierce and Foremost Dress, Visionary Dress

I’d have to say my favorite overall is the Feverish Dress, the pretty white and seagreen one with the zipper details on the far left of the first graphic on this post, directly from the brand! How beautiful is that? I love all of these…whether animal print, lace, or metallic, they all have a perfect time and place.

As for the brand itself, Three Floor was born in 2011 and got most of its inspiration from bloggers, off-duty models and editors, in an effort to create contemporary closet staples that the consumer wants. After awhile I always ask myself, ‘what more can you do with a dress?’ Actually I think the same with jeans…but lately it’s been fun to see designers thinking outside of the box as a tougher economy and stiffer competition has entered the world of fashion. That is what makes it all so awesome…even if I can’t own every great piece I see, it’s enjoyable to see it all from an art perspective!

Shop the Three Floor awesomeness:

New Coach Bags for Men go Both Ways

New Coach Bags for Men go Both Ways - Bleecker Day Tote In Mixed Bar Stripe Leather

Coach Bleecker Day Tote In Mixed Bar Stripe Leather

New Coach Bags for Men go Both Ways

At least that’s how I see it…PurseBlog posted about the new line of Coach bags for men in honor of Father’s Day and they caught my eye in a different way…I’d carry them! Granted, most of these bags do have a very manly touch to them, but a few of them look fairly unisex. It’s great, however, to see the men’s line is just as varied as the women’s line is! Men deserve a wide range of fashionable choices just as much as we fashionistas do.

I love colorblocking and big bold stripes, so all of these catch my eyes. How pretty are they? And I LOVE foldover totes (a la Foley & Corinna) so I’d definitely carry the Thompson Foldover Tote In Colorblock Leather seen here…it actually looks like a bag I coveted for awhile at Urban Outfitters but then ditched when I heard about its questionable quality.

New Coach Bags for Men go Both Ways -

Coach Thompson Foldover Tote In Colorblock Leather

New Coach Bags for Men go Both Ways - Bleecker Legacy Weekend Tote In Leather

Coach Bleecker Legacy Weekend Tote In Leather

This pretty blue Bleecker Legacy Weekend Tote In Leather has the perfect classic look to it…I’d definitely carry it all summer long. I can’t help but wonder if, like in the surf apparel industry, these men’s bags would be more durable than the women’s bags? What does a guy carry with him? Laptops? Binders? Day planners? Razors? Power tools? I guess I wouldn’t know….

New Coach Bags for Men go Both Ways - Bleecker Day Tote In Bar Stripe Leather

Coach Bleecker Day Tote In Bar Stripe Leather

New Coach Bags for Men go Both Ways - Bleecker Reversible Bucket Tote In Pebbled Leather

Coach Bleecker Reversible Bucket Tote In Pebbled Leather

Stripes, stripes, and more stripes! I love them. And I love totes. I look for practicality and classic appeal…and all of these fit the bill. I don’t necessary carry things to look cute, I just want them to last and…well ok, look kind of cute too. What do you think? We already know of the crossover from womens’ fashion over to mens’ with the menswear trend we see on catwalks and red carpets everywhere, but I’ve never seen women carrying mens’ bags. It’s only a matter of time, I guess…these are really neat. And, I agree with PurseBlog…these make great Father’s Day gifts for the fashionable dads among us.

Purchase links:

Bleecker Day Tote In Mixed Bar Stripe Leather
Bleecker Legacy Weekend Tote In Leather
Thompson Foldover Tote In Colorblock Leather
Bleecker Reversible Bucket Tote In Pebbled Leather
Bleecker Day Tote In Bar Stripe Leather

Shop the whole collection here!

Red Engine Scorcher Jean in Sugar Review on Denimology

Red Engine Scorcher Sugar Review on Denimology

Red Engine Scorcher Jean in Sugar Review on Denimology

Summer and warmer weather bring lighter and brighter apparel. This is the time of year when fashionistas everywhere begin sporting their pastel colored, neon, or white jeans! The very thought of white denim strikes fear in many who otherwise desire the very flattering look that white jeans can bring, and I’ll admit I’m one of those people…always afraid they might be see through or that I’ll get them dirty on the first wear out of the house. However, I like a good white ankle skinny, and I had one once from Express that I loved until I started getting into shape and they became too baggy. I had it in the back of my mind to be on the lookout for another, better fitting pair, and I got the chance to try out the white denim trend again thanks to Red Engine! So today I’m happy to present a Red Engine Scorcher Super Skinny Ankle Jean in Sugar review!

Red Engine Scorcher Sugar Review on Denimology

I first learned about Red Engine at a local boutique I used to design print collateral for, and they’ve been on my radar ever since. I was excited to finally try them out for myself! The brand was created by denim fans Jim Boldes and Kristy Harlan, and is based on the appeal, both in look and in feel, of vintage denim. They are another on the list of denim brands proudly made in the USA, specifically Los Angeles. Red Engine imports quality fabrics from Japan and Europe, and every pair is built and detailed by hand. I’ve heard a lot of great things about this brand, and I can attest that those rants and raves were well-founded after finally trying them out for myself!

Read the rest on Denimology!

Kill City Hi Wire Skinny in Shadow Wash on Denimology

Kill City Hi Wire Skinny in Shadow Wash on Denimology

Kill City Hi Wire Skinny in Shadow Wash on Denimology

I’m definitely not stranger to punk or rock-inspired apparel…that was basically me, back in high school! I had the band, I listened to metal, and I dressed the part. Unfortunately back then, I was limited to second-hand stores and an out-of-town Hot Topic I was only lucky enough to visit once. Today, my sense of style is vastly different, although the spirit slightly remains. I love rock n’ roll inspired fashion, because I feel it’s timeless, and works with any season…and it gives me that edge when I feel like it! One of my favorite brands that captures this rebel feel is Kill City, for their wide variety of unique jeans and apparel that give you that “I’m with the band” feel or make you want to start a band yourself. Today I’m excited to bring you a Kill City Hi Wire Skinny in Shadow Wash review!

Kill City Hi Wire Skinny in Shadow Wash on Denimology - Side View

Kill City is rooted and manufactured in Los Angeles and inspired by punk and alternative music and the sub-cultures within them. The brand states, “Stemming from New Wave Punk to Indie and contemporary music genres like Acid Folk and Post-Rock, Kill City provides clothing that supports these lifestyles. Consequently, Kill City has become synonymous with fashion forward designs adding a contemporary twist. Our philosophy is to produce intricately made fashionable pieces with distinctive silhouettes and vibrant colors that reflect today’s evolving interests and cultural influences—all while maintaining an affordable price point for the fashion savvy consumer.” Rock on. I have one other pair of Kill City jeans I got off Hautelook awhile back…a pretty dark grey jean with an ombre wash that lightens up towards the ankles. I wore them when out on DJ gigs! They were a size 27, and a little loose, so when I got the opportunity to review the Hi Wire Skinny I went with my current size of 26. I chose the Shadow Wash because I have black skinny jeans, and light grey, but nothing charcoal-like, so I thought it would be fun to review something different. When I received these in the mail, the color was just like it shows on the website. As mentioned, they are a dark charcoal grey, but with a fade and whiskering. I love the look!

Read the rest of the review right here!

Check out my other Denimology reviews here.

Foley & Corinna Mid City Tote in Cobalt

Foley & Corinna Mid City Tote in Cobalt - Side View

Foley & Corinna Mid City Tote in Cobalt

Have I ever mentioned how much I absolutely LOVE eBay? After craving a cobalt blue leather slouchy bag for awhile and lamenting the fact that the cobalt blue Foley & Corinna Mid City Tote sold out years ago (and dreading the retail price), I finally found this rare gem on a spur-of-the-moment auction search! Funny enough, it was not long after I posted about my favorite color of the season (Cobalt, of course) and mentioning this bag was on my wish list for quite some time. I’ve seen the smaller Disco City Clutch and Lady Tote in cobalt on eBay for a much higher price, but I had my eyes set on the Mid City Tote! About 7 years ago, I helped maintain a site for a boutique called Blue Bee in Santa Barbara, California, and it was through this job that I first discovered the Anna Corinna brand, before it became Foley & Corinna. At first I hated the look of the bag, but somehow it grew on me and it’s been on my radar ever since, especially after it got a bit of an appearance upgrade. And now it’s mine, all mine!

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Siwy Hannah Jeans in Surf City

Siwy Hannah Jeans in Surf City

Siwy Hannah Jeans in Surf City

New wish list item, for sure. Once I layed my eyes on these, I wished it were my hands that were receiving the treatment instead…look how beautiful these Siwy Hannah Jeans in Surf City are! Siwy is one of those brands that sells out QUICK. It’s been fairly hit or miss to me…every pair seems to fit looser in the hips and waist than they do in the legs, but a friend handed me a pair of her old Siwy Hannahs in a size 27 and the fit was actually more evened out (albeit large, since I’m a 26). I dunno, there’s been something about this brand that’s kept me hooked, waiting to get my hands on that perfect pair that I know is out there somewhere. These beauties are unfortunately almost sold out…(again, Siwy‘s popularity is ridiculous) but I’m keeping my fingers crossed! I could see wearing these with a flowy black top, or oooohhh even my black leather jacket, since I cannot stand bright colors if they aren’t balanced out with something dark and edgy. Bright on bright…ew. Too bubblegum for me.

On the topic of distressed jeans of color, I got to thinking of how rarely good pairs pop up. I see colored jeans all the time, and distressed jeans all the time, but seeing a pair pop up with both attributes seems few and far between. I was turned on to the idea a few years ago when I almost bought a beautiful torn up red pair of the Citizens of Humanity Avedon jeans from Shopbop…and they were on SALE. But alas, I let them go, and to this day sort of regret it. I’ve been perusing eBay since. So, I did a quick little search for torn up, worn out colored jeans, and found a few winners. Enjoy, if that’s your thing!

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Kicking It Into Gear

SLO Half Marathon

Me finishing the SLO Half Marathon in April 2013

Kicking It Into Gear

I am often asked what I do fitness wise to keep fitting into my skinny jeans! I will be honest, some of the muscle definition is genetic, but I DO gain weight fast if I’m not diligent with both diet and exercise, especially since I’m 32 this year. Eek! Thankfully, after developing discipline about 10 years ago when I was 20 or 21, I’ve gotten to the point where I crave exercise and clean eating, and I feel like utter crap if I fall off the wagon. It’s basically like sleeping or breathing, to me…a total necessity, I can’t function well without it! But more than that, it’s empowering…something that keeps me strong and motivated and excited to live my daily life to its fullest, and proof to me that I can push myself to do whatever I want to accomplish.

I love fitness so much nowadays that I love to help others with any questions and guidance they may need…I considered doing some physical training and I have read a lot of a certified friend’s NASM study materials to at least better understand more about my own fitness efforts. Granted I’m not expert yet, but with that knowledge combined with what I’ve learned through my own journey to fitness, I love helping others as best I can. It’s amazing to look back and see where I started…I remember the first time I really ran was the mile run in 7th grade PE, in which I finished before all the girls with a clean 7:36. I didn’t get even close to that for a long time, until I was about 20 and decided to get into running again just to look good. I didn’t know a whole lot about fitness and health and nutrition back then…it was all for aesthetics. Because of that, it was really hard to keep up. It’s easy to get discouraged. Therefore, “to look hot” should never be the #1 priority in anyone’s desire to get fit, if you ask me. It should be for health, and how strong, supercharged, invincible and amazing you feel, and it took me awhile to really understand that. Once I was there, I realized the looks follow. It should be seen as a sort of fuel, as something to power your body to live your daily life with purpose. Of course, with any sporty endeavor, I also had to learn how to get fit in a safe way, with proper form to avoid injury, which also taught me a lot about my body, as well as about myself in a spiritual sense. There are benefits all around!

Kicking It Into Gear - Me at the gym

Me at the gym

So, what do I do? After many years of running, which I love, I got a gym membership, but really just tinkered around on the elliptical and the treadmill and a few of the machines without really knowing what I was doing. Yes, it was better than nothing, but little did I know that intervals and pushing yourself in the right way was going to give you a far greater benefit than staying in the “fat burning zone” on those machines for an hour. Longer duration isn’t always better, just like eating less isn’t always better, it’s all about working smart, not hard (or wait, let me rephrase that…working hard and smart)!. I could write for a long time about this and it probably warrants a whole new blog post so I’ll keep it short…through some trial and error I found I was a little overreactive to dairy, so I cut that out of my diet, and just simply stayed as clean as I could. Think shorter, easier to read ingredient lists, no processed food (except for my bread, I love my whole wheat bread), the right fats like that from avodados or olive oil, eating the right carbs (brown rice instead of white, whole wheat instead of white bread, whole wheat pasta instead of regular, fruits and vegetables for fiber, cane sugar if I really needed sugar instead of high fructose, etc), limited red meat (grass fed if possible, organic), hormone free chicken, huge salads made up of dark leafy spinach and colorful vegetables and olive oil as the first course at dinner…you get the idea. I also found that my body responds to exercise best if I power up on carbs before, like a piece of whole wheat toast with some organic peanut butter, then protein after, like a Nutrilite shake (I am a distributor, I LOVE this brand! I also take their supplements, even though I eat as balanced as I can for the highest nutritional benefit) or two eggs with some avocado for the healthy fats. Of course I treat myself sometimes…I am a sucker for a good burger and a beer, and I love my chocolate. It kills me when I hear people say they are cutting carbs or fats…not all carbs or fats are equal, people, and your body needs the good kinds to function! Just take some time to do a little research. And those juice cleanses? Don’t get me started…

Workout wise, I now keep things varied. That’s important! Getting too used to one workout can lead to muscle imbalances (and thus injuries), plateaus, and just plain boredom. When I trained for the SLO Half Marathon in April of 2013, I used the gym for cross training to make sure all my supportive (isometric) muscles were strong enough to end knee and joint pain. To this day, my favorite gym routine is intervals on the elliptical (level 15 for 5min, then 15 for 5min, back and forth for 30min, then down to 13 or 14 for another 30min if I feel up to it) or treadmill (2.5% incline at 7mph for 5min, then 8mph for 5min, back and forth for 30min, then lower to 6.5mph for another 10min or so, or more if I feel like it), then various ab exercises on the incline bench, knee extensions to strengthen quads for knee support, hip extensions for glute strengthening, and sometimes rows to strengthen my back for better posture. Cross training is definitely important to keep you conditioned for running, but proper form is probably even more important. I used Chirunning.com to learn proper running form. Those fancy shoes meant to correct your poor form won’t do you all that good if you don’t learn to run properly! In fact, once my form was corrected, I found I had no injury with minimal footwear (I have a padded pair of neutral Puma running shoes for the longer runs and a pair of VIVOBAREFOOT shoes for anything 7mi or under. Barefoot shoes are awesome, you just have to condition yourself for them first, almost like a ballet dancer does with pointe shoes!). I like to get to the base of a problem, not try to cover it up. The cross training also helps strengthen the muscles needed to hold proper form. So many people don’t realize there’s a right and wrong way to run. Basically, most people run bent over at the waist, striking their heels at each step (which adds drag). This puts incredible strain on the knees, and this is why people think running is bad for you. You should be bent at the ankles, with a straight body, stepping underneath yourself midfoot, and kicking back, pushing yourself forward instead of pulling yourself forward (this was the source of a lot of my knee pain). In addition, each stride should be short and quick to reduce the pressure on your joints, and your upper body should be relaxed, with your legs doing all the work (it helps to imagine your spine as an energy column, supplying energy to your lower body). Running should be efficient and meditative, not exhausting and painful. I practiced this over and over until I could get the 13.1 miles down. After the race, I knew all that hard work wasn’t going to go to waste…I kept that up just about every weekend for a year.

Not long after the half marathon, I discovered Insanity and HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training), which was an amazing discovery in my fitness journey! For those that know P90x, it’s sort of the same thing, but more focused on cardio, and a little more fast paced and intense, which I like. HIIT is about short, intense bursts of energy with 20 or 30 second resting periods in between to keep your body guessing by varying your heart rate. Long cardio sessions at a consistent pace often results in your body becoming too familiar and efficient to the point of diminishing results. Insanity also taught me even more about proper form, control, and was (and is) an incredible help to keeping my full body strong and prepared to keep running or to do whatever other physically demanding activities I want to do. Insanity helped me run harder, and longer, as well. Granted, I’m not all that partial to going anywhere past 13.1 miles at this point but you never know, right? Just like running, it taught me a lot more about my body and how I move, and introduced another HUGELY important factor into being fit…FLEXIBILITY. Seriously I was so prone to lower back spasms until I took the time to stretch (I’m not that patient of a person), especially my hamstrings and calves, because it’s said that if they are tight, it can pull your pelvis out of alignment and hurt your lower back. That seemed to be the case for me, as well as learning to keep your core (your abs) tight through workouts for additional support and balance. Insanity was a huge help, and it still is. Currently, I do Insanity (Plyometric Cardio Circuit, Pure Cardio, Max Interval Plyo, Max Interval Sports Training, Max Cardio Conditioning, and Cardio Power & Resistance are my rotation) during the week before work or do a 30-60min (4mi-7.5mi) run, and on the weekends I switch off between my gym routine and a long run, every other weekend.

Insanity

Insanity

Being fit is not a destination, I’ve discovered. It’s a constant journey. It’s funny, I find if I lay off Insanity for just a week and focus on running, Insanity will make me sore again the next time I jump on it, and same with running and the gym. One gets harder if I focus on the others too much. I’m always learning new things about myself and my own capabilities, and trying to keep things as varied and balanced as I can. I tend to impatiently want to go gung ho with things, and fitness has taught me how to calm down and stay in CONTROL. It’s a total mental lesson and definitely a metaphor to life in general. I couldn’t see myself living without the priority to stay as fit and healthy as possible.

I hope that was helpful! There’s so much more I could have written, but, I guess this is a good basic rundown of what I do, and I plan to write other posts later that go more into specifics. If anyone would like me to elaborate on anything, say so, and I’ll make another post about it! I think the next fitness-related one will be what clothing/shoes I have found to benefit me the most 🙂

Here is some gear that I either already use or would use, to make the most out of your workout and look cute doing it! I included some of the minimal/neutral/trail footwear I use as well.

Bluer Chambray Shirt Review on Denimology

Bluer Chambray Shirt Review on Denimology

Bluer Chambray Shirt Review on Denimology

With the warmer weather now hitting us, I like to put away my jackets and hoodies and use something lighter when I feel I need a little more coverage – shirts! Chambray shirts offer a fun casual look with a hint of sophistication to me, and I feel they warrant “staple” status in your closet! Today I’ll be diverting away from jeans yet again, with a Bluer Denim Chambray Shirt Review!

Bluer Chambray Shirt Review on Denimology - Full Image

Bluer holds a higher standard to quality, authenticity and good old American innovation. The company proudly produces all products in the United States, from growing the cotton in Georgia, weaving the textiles in North Carolina, designing the garments themselves in Portland, Oregon, and handcrafting the final product in Los Angeles. They also offer a home-try on option for jeans which allows a shopper to choose up to three pairs to be shipped for free both ways to the person’s home to try them on. The shopper can then ship the unwanted jeans back, and they are only charged for the one they keep! Bluer also shows they care about humanitarian and sustainability efforts with their “buy one, give one” program. When you purchase a new pair of jeans, Bluer provides a return label to ship back an old pair to them, then they will give you $5 for to use on a future purchase. All jeans sent to them are sanitized and donated to someone in need, with a goal of giving away 1,000 jeans by the end of 2014!

Read the rest on Denimology here!

Check out more reviews from me right here.

Topshop MOTO Leigh Jeans in Bleach Stone Review on Denimology

Topshop MOTO Leigh Jeans in Bleach Stone Review on Denimology

Topshop MOTO Leigh Jeans in Bleach Stone Review on Denimology

I remember being in London in 2006 and seeing Topshop stores throughtout my 6-week stay in the UK. Shopping was so fun in that city! It seemed like there was such a wider variety of fun styles and looks…granted I never really actually entered a Topshop store, since it was cheaper to shop at H&M at the time (thanks, exchange rate), but I’ve always had the brand on my mind as a unique yet basic contemporary shop for those who are just looking for something different. When I was given the opportunity to review Topshop jeans, I was excited to finally check out this brand a little bit more close and personal. Since the summer months are approaching, I singled out a pretty bleached pair, and now I’m bringing you a Topshop MOTO Leigh Jeans in Bleach Stone review!

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Denim Eyewear from Diesel

Diesel Denimize

Photo: Diesel

Denim Eyewear from Diesel

Diesel is one of those brands from which we can always expect to expect the wild, the different, and the innovative. And yet, somehow I am still surprised with what they come up with from time to time. The eyewear and denim markets are always major ones in the fashion world, but unlike denim, I rarely see a lot of innovation with eyewear. Leave it to Diesel to take care of that…the brand just released their Denimize collection, which is basically denim eyewear. The brand states:

The Denimize Collection takes our 35 years of denim expertise and experience to create a distinctive selection of sunglasses and optical eyewear. Featuring real denim from the richest, most tactile section of fabric, which ensues every pair is subtly different and unique, just as each pair of jeans is never the same shade or tone.

The line includes both sunglasses and optical options which you can find or order through your local optometrist, for both women and men, of course. At first I thought these were going to be full-on denim sunglasses (again, I always expect the extreme from Diesel), but these are actually pretty classy. I love how balanced they are, with just the right of denim accents to make these catch the attention of others as you strut down the street. Like many, I am picky with the shape of sunglasses since different styles look differently on various shapes and sizes of faces, but if I see these in my local eyewear shops, I’ll be stopping to try them on.

Check out a few styles below:

Women's Claudia

Women’s Claudia

Denim Eyewear from Diesel - DL0071

DL0071

Denim Eyewear from Diesel  - DL5066

DL5066

Shop the collection here.