Shopping for Summer Dresses

I know it’s only starting to feel like spring but I’ve already got summer on the brain. I have a few weddings to attend this summer, and my new hobby is dress shopping. I’m having trouble making final decisions though, so I need some help.

Here’s what I’m looking for:

  • Probably printed or floral, because I’ve overdone the lace overlay trend, and I don’t want to look like a bridesmaid in a plain dress.
  • Somewhat structured, at least in the bodice. I dream of a big flowy maxi dress, but if it’s not cut well for me, I know it will look like a huge tent. So I need to be strategic.
  • Budget friendly, but not a cheap throw away dress. I have limited occasions for a non-work dress, so I don’t want to break the bank.

Here are some of the top contenders:

Anthrogreen

This maxi from Anthropologie seems interesting and summery even though it’s a darker green. It’s pricy at $198, so I’m wondering if it’s worth it.

anthrotier

Another one from Anthro. It’s a little less structured, but there’s a chance that the tier on top is flattering. I think it’s really pretty and priced pretty well at $128.

nordstromfloral

This one from Nordstrom seems like a perfect spring/summer luncheon/event dress. I love a sheath dress, and it’s a decent price at $118. I think I could even pull a day to night look with it if I had an event to go to right after work.

 

NordstromdressAnother Nordstrom dress by the same designer as the one above: Adrianna Papell. I like this because it’s a twist on the standard sheath with an interesting geometric print and different neckline. Also decent price at $118.

Nordstromdress2If I were to go a lace direction, I think this option is a nice spin to the standard lace overlay. I know it looks a little blobby in this picture, but I think up close, and in person it would look a little better. It’s another Nordstrom find at $138.

 

So the question is, what do I chose? What dresses or spring/summer trends are you gravitating towards this year?

 

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The Self-Tanning Solution

I have two weddings coming up in the next three months.  Due to my fair skin type, I am unable to tan by sitting underneath the sun’s bright rays.  It’s actually a blessing in disguise since skin cancer runs in my family to begin with.  Due to the fact that my sunburn will never turn into a tan, I have to resort to other means of tanning.

The Tan Spray Stall – In preparation for a wedding in the past, I went to a tanning salon with a friend.  Talk about comical.  The spray tan booth is simply intimidating.  I entered the booth completely naked which is always an uncomfortable situation for me even if there isn’t really anyone watching (although I always find myself seeking out the exact location of the hidden camera…I have yet to find one but I know it is somewhere!).  Then a little voice comes out of a speaker telling me which way to face and how to put your arms.  The 16 year old working there who tells me the positions before I go into the room is a pro so she glides right through it and I’m thinking “Where do I put my hands? Which way do I turn my body?”.  I basically know I’m screwed from the start.  The spray session takes about 8 minutes, which included the application of the bronzer.  There was so much liquid covering my body that I had to take paper towels and even the application out.  When I emerged from the room, my friend was laughing.  I looked like a raccoon in the dark.  The whites of my eyes were glowing.  They said not to take a shower until the next morning but I decided to nix that and I took my shower about 4 hours later.  I managed to get a pretty good tan without look too unnatural but I must say I was freaking out the whole time.  I thought I was going to have to scrub myself with a Brillo pad to remove an orange streaky tan.  Luckily, I was able to pull it off but I never want to experience that again.  You can tell I have a nice healthy glow in the pic below.

IMG_0294

St. Tropez Self-Tanner – My love of QVC comes in handy again.  Since I vowed never to go back to the spray tan booth, I decided I would have another go at the self-tanner.  I have tried Tarte’s version before but I don’t think it achieved the tan I was hoping for.  It just so happened that last week, one of the Today’s Special Values was St. Tropez Deluxe Self-Tanning Mousse.  I watched the presentation and saw instant results.  Needless to say it came yesterday and I made my first application this morning.  I made sure to exfoliate in the shower and then apply lotion to the areas I planned on applying the mousse.   I then applied the mousse evenly in a circular motion and saw instant results.  I am going to let it set for at least 8 hours before I take my next shower.  The results are amazing and I can’t wait to apply another round tomorrow to achieve an even darker richer color.  I don’t have any pics now, but I’ll be sure to post the wedding pics as soon as possible.  I can’t wait to go to this wedding in San Antonio with my beau (that’s for you, Karla).  Texas, here I come!

st. tropez

Sheets and Towels

Now that I’ve got my living room in order, and I’m over the hump of the holidays, it’s time to shape up my bathroom and bedroom. My current sheets and towels have seen many an apartment in the last six or seven years. And while they have served me well, I think I’m ready for something fresh, and with possibly a few less bleach stains (I love a strong bathroom cleaner).

My go to places for sheets and towels are usually Pottery Barn and The Company Store but I’m keeping my eyes open for other options as well. I would typically just run down to Bed Bath & Beyond, but I have this problem, I need my linens monogrammed

While I typically love a crazy, multi-color, patterned duvet cover, and plain sheets, I’m thinking about picking a more zen duvet cover this time around. Here are some contenders so far (first 3 from Pottery Barn, last one from West Elm):

PotteryBarnDuvet

PotteryBarnDuvet2

PotteryBarnDuvet3

WestElmDuvet

With towels I’m thinking about a dark dusty blue, somewhere between navy blue and royal blue, with a white monogram of course. Pottery Barn calls it Blue Harbor (of course my color isn’t in the picture, but it’s outlined in the swatches below):

PBtowel

Potterybarntowelcolor

Stay tuned! I’ll let you know what I pick!

What do you look for when you’re shopping for linens? Patterns? Thread count? Color?