Wednesday, November 27, 2013

The Best of Black Friday & Cyber Monday

I must admit, I've never been very crazy about Black Friday or Cyber Monday. I used to work retail at a large, chain-filled shopping mall at home and spent most of my Thanksgivings after the age of 16 cutting out of dinner early so I could get some zzz's before my alarm went off at 1:30 a.m. I will admit, I volunteered for the early shifts—mostly because it meant I got a great parking spot (I ignored the rules where mall employees weren't allowed to park in the first row) and could wander the mall after if I so chose. New York City does Black Friday a little differently—or I should say, doesn't really do it. When you don't have a heated mall to wander and instead are dealing with hundreds thousands of tourists on the street & subways just to get from shop to shop, you learn to stay home and shop from the Internet, instead. As I'm sure you've now guessed, that's exactly what I'll be doing with my day, so I've rounded up some of the sales I'll be scouring below, with updates throughout the weekend!

Express: 50 percent off every single item until noon on Friday, November 29.

The Outnet: Extra 30 Percent off Weekend Shop In on Black Friday. November 30 to December 2 Free Shipping with $250 code FREESHIPWKND.

Capwell & Co: 35 percent off purchases of $50 or more! Use code HOLIDAY35 until Monday, December 2.

Otte: Extra 40 Percent off already marked down merchandise with code BLACKFRIDAY until November 29. Cyber Monday sale begins November 29, EVERYTHING will be 20% off (no code needed!).

Sephora: Loads of products for just $10 as part of Dealtopia, beginning 11/29.

Robert Lee Morris: 30 Percent off with code RLMTHIRTY on Cyber Monday

BaubleBar: On Black Friday there will be a one-day-only sitewide sale. 15 percent off two items with code FRIDAY15, 25 percent off three items with code FRIDAY25, 35 percent off four+ items with code FRIDAY 35. On Cyber Monday, BaubleBar is inviting customers to play its Cyber Savings Smash game. Using the mallet to bop crazy shoppers out of the way, customers can score one of four amazing deals.

Madewell: 25 percent off your entire purchase with code FEAST25, plus free shipping. Through Monday, December 2.

Shopbop: From November 26 to December 2, spend $250 and save 15 percent, spend $500 and save 20 percent, spend $1,000 and save 25 percent.

Gorjana & Griffin: 40 percent off sitewide plus free domestic ground shipping. 

AG: Friday, November 29 through Sunday, December 1, take an extra 20 percent off already marked down styles.

Dannijo: Dannijo will be having six days of surprise sales on from Wednesday, November 27 through Monday December 2. To find out what goes on sale each day, customers can subscribe to the DANNIJO newsletter.

Bebe: Black Friday deals will begin on Thursday, November 21 ending with a free pouchette with a $125 purchase on Friday, November 29. 

Forever 21: Items as low as $3.00 starting Friday, November 29.

Alexander Wang: 40 percent off select fall and pre-fall 2013 items with code AWSALE13 for a limited time. 

Club Monaco: 30 percent off already reduced styles with code THANKS30 through November 29. 

Lord & Taylor: 20 percent off sale and clearance with code BIG.

The Reformation: Up to 60 percent off fall apparel. 

Intermix: 40 percent off sale items in store and online through Monday, December 2. 20 percent off regular price goods on Thanksgiving only; discount automatically applied at checkout.

Twelfth St. by Cynthia Vincent: Monday, December 2, 20 percent off full priced and sale plus free shipping with code THANKS

Cynthia Rowley: Save up to 65 percent off fall markdowns, save 50 percent off angora sweaters and 20 percent off full-price clothing through December 2.

Parker NY: Through November 29 at 11:59 pm PST, spend $200 and get 20 percent off, spend $300 and get 30 percent off, spend $400 and get 40 percent off. Enter BLACK13 at checkout. Ends November 29 at 11:59 at EST.

Scoop NYC: 25 percent off in stores and online through December 1 at 11:59 EST.

3.1 Phillip Lim: 40 percent off select pre-fall and fall 2013 items.

The Dreslyn: Through December 1, take up to 60 percent off with code BLACKFRIDAY

Elizabeth Cole Jewelry: Enter BEJEWELED for 50 percent off select items through midnight. Discount falls to 40 percent off through Monday.

Trina Turk: Take 25 percent off four black dress styles with code BLACK DRESS through December 2, in stores and online.

Kelly Wearstler: 20 percent off all jewelry and accessories November 29 through December 2 with code KWGIFT.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Make Portraits

Back in September, I had the honor of connecting with a photographer in the new era of portraits through Instagram (remember this shoot? #RIP5Pointz). When Jorge reached out to see if I was up for another shoot a few weeks back, I jumped at the opportunity—and am thrilled to share some of his photos with you! Make sure you check out all his work on his website and flickr accounts, and for a daily dose of beautiful photos in your feed, follow him on Instagram! (I'm particular partial to this shot he snapped of me while I was photographing the sunset.)
A quick aside—one of my favorite ways to discover some of the amazing artists out there on Instagram these days is to search the hashtag #makeportraits. It'll take you down the rabbit hole, for sure, but I guarantee you'll find a lot of new accounts to love!

*All images courtesy of Jorge Quinteros

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Weekend Reading

Time has been flying by lately—it's hard to believe it's nearly Thanksgiving, and then I only have a few weeks left in NYC before I head back to Iowa for the rest of the holidays! Later this week, my roommates & I will be having all our "orphan" friends over to celebrate Thanksgiving & Hanukkah (as I'm sure you've guessed from my photos, I am not Jewish, but two of my roommates are!). That means my weekend is going to be filled with lots of exciting apartment cleaning, but it also gives me a chance to try to get our gallery wall finally put together. I'm thinking of adding in some mirrors, à la the photo above—they really open up the space and add a little something extra to the area (ours will be running down a long, partially open hallway).

I'll be making these dinner rolls again for Thanksgiving. They've become a perennial favorite!

Have you seen this live tweeting of a break-up? There are some questions to whether it's real, but no question that it's hilarious!

I love Hallie's Postcards from New York City post—so many gorgeous photos of our beautiful city!

This jewel-toned crossbody would be perfect for the holidays.

As a pretty big film photography enthusiast, I'm in love with these colorized photos from the past that have been making their way around the web.

This hand-painted mug DIY would make great holiday gifts!

An (imaginary) letter from Michelle Obama to Kanye West.

I've been getting in touch with my punk-kid roots lately, which means I really need these gold-spattered Chuck Taylors!

Speaking of sneakers, I'm also lusting after these turquoise ones.

A tour of designer Charlotte Ronson's Manhattan apartment.

Obsessively stalking Dreams + Jeans for her interior envy posts. They are all incredibly beautiful spaces!

*image via

Friday, November 22, 2013

Lust vs. Must: Embellished Sweatshirts

Ah, the embellished sweatshirt. It's like two of my favorite things from college—cozy sweatshirts and sequined tops—got together and had a (much more sophisticated) baby. Unfortunately, sophistication is often followed by a higher price tag, which can be a little hard to justify when many of my days are spent dashing around town for work or at my desk for hours at a time. Thankfully, if I do want to get a little desk-to-dinner & drinks action in my wardrobe, there are some more affordable options out there. Doesn't mean I can't lust, though!

Shop the Post

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Pre-Holiday Dressing

Midi skirts are truly the perfect all-season piece—I've been working various versions of this look all year. A great, just-below-the-knee skirt works with a silky tank & heeled sandals in the summer and a few more layers, like tights and a jacket, in colder months.  The slight sparkle in this jacket makes it a pre-holiday look, don't you think? (During the actual holidays, it's really a miracle if I get dressed—last Christmas, it was so cold in Iowa that I wore the same sweater for over 48 hours. Oops).
Dolan Clothing Jacket || Charlotte Ronson Top || Skirt (similar, on sale!)
Hue Tights || Ecco Sculptured 75 Booties

Photos: Joey DeBenedetto

Monday, November 18, 2013

In The Rain

 It's pretty easy to be jaded about photography these days, with anyone and everyone thinking they're a photographer with their iPhone and cheap dSLR cameras and photos of food/coffee and flowers and sunsets (don't get me wrong, I'm guilty of coffee & flower & sunset snaps, too). Add in all the filters and apps and things get seriously skewed—don't even get me started on "desaturating" images in Photoshop and calling it black and white! Thankfully, there are still some gems hidden out there on the web, even on Instagram. 

But, OK, rant over...and on to some images from a photographer recently shared with me by a friend. I'm not sure much about the photographer other than that he posts as "Yodamandu," shoots with a Leica M series and is based in Strasbourg. Oh, and his photos are STUNNING. These are from his series simply called Rain, but make sure you check out his entire feed if you have time.
All images via Yodamandu

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Weekend Link Love

Ah, the weekend. What used to be reserved for sleeping in, brunching, catching up on TV and just generally being a bum has turned into a frenzied how-can-I-get-everything-done time for me. While most people go out on the weekends, I prefer to see friends and attend events during the week when my day has already been shot by work and I'm in Manhattan, easily accessible to anyone available for the evening. Weekends, then, become my time to run errands and get everything else done that I didn't have time for during the week—and often, those plans are interrupted. This morning I'd planned to get up at a decent hour, make some breakfast & coffee, write this post, and clean around my apartment until I need to leave for other plans in the afternoon. 

Instead, I overslept a bit, and shortly after I got up, the radiators in my apartment started to spew water in three different rooms, flooding the apartment downstairs in the process. Happy Saturday, right? Two hours later, I finally ate some food and got ready for the day, only to find that the subway wasn't running where I needed it to. As much as I despise winter and all the cold that comes with, I'm actually looking forward to some crummy-weather weekends where I'll have good reason not to leave my apartment for a full 48 hours. And on that note, if you're being a bum this weekend, I'm sharing a few of my favorite things from around the web to keep you entertained.

My elephant obsession absolutely extends to this cute match strike from Julia's shop!

Sleek metal details on shoes are becoming my new favorite thing-like these Zara pumps.

Should you ever work for free as a blogger?

The best exchange I've seen on social media in a long, long time (maybe ever!).

Have you seen this subway-prank video yet? (Hint: it's super sweet!)

If you haven't heard about this little boy's Make-A-Wish yet, you've been living under a rock. Also, it'll probably make you cry...& maybe restore your faith in humanity.

Lulu Frost SS 2014...I'll take one of each, please!

This Julia Kostreva marble print is the background on my work computer. Now, I want it for my phone, too!

Mercury was in f*cking retrograde.

Cinnamon Brioche Chocolate Chip French Toast Muffins with Coconut Streusel. (Get in my belly.)

I shot an entire roll of film on this old cabin in Maryland last weekend. Nervously excited to see how it turned out!

Beautiful post-rain photos.

In love with this leather-trimmed hoodie.

*image via

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Polka Dots

If I were to truly evaluate my wardrobe, I think I'd find that I'm mostly attracted to a variety of solid colors, sometimes with embellishments, and the occasional crazy, bright print. Rarely anything in between (let's not spend too much time on what this says about me, OK?). Apparently, despite its usually girl-ier nature, polka dots are kinda becoming my thing (remember this post?). Next to conquer—colored polka dots, duh! 
And, just for fun...this is what happens when you keep trying to photo-bomb my shoot! (There are several teenage boys just outside the frame.)
Street Vendor Scarf (from Italy!) || Lionette Necklace || Steve Madden Bag

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Weekly Wants

Let me bring you up date to on weather in NYC & really, across a lot of the U.S., too—it got cold this week. And by cold I mean I woke up to snow flurries outside my window yesterday morning (which meant I decided to oversleep, oops). As I'm sure I said many a time last year, I hate dislike hate winter. And snow, and cold, and short days, the list goes on and on! Since I have to suffer through it, though, I've got my eye on a lot of warm accessories, like cashmere gloves, oversize scarves and lots of leather (my kind of LOL). I'm aware it's a little ironic that there are no coats or sweaters in this, but trust me-a leather cami with a blazer on top will keep me warm like nothing else. Thankfully, we're going to get a little boost of warm weather over the weekend—don't be surprised if you run into me out in a t-shirt, celebrating it for the last time I can!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Be Bold

Lip Color (noun): a disguise for lazy days; an easy way to look put together

I've never been one to shy away from bold beauty trends (Kool-Aid hair dye, anyone?). During my teen years, colorful eyeliner was my expressive makeup of choice. Not only were eye pencils pretty affordable—there were a lot of great options at my local drugstores for as little as $.99—they were highly pigmented and felt a little rebellious. I was frequently known to wear as many as three colors blended together at once, but I rarely ventured into lip color outside of the occasional candy-colored (& often similarly-scented) gloss. College brought out the "adult" in me, intermittently experimenting with a bubblegum pink or bright red lipstick, usually for a party or Greek life function (also known as more parties). 

Starting a job in the "real world" brought another shift, once I realized lip color is an easy addition in the morning to make me look more put together, as opposed to reserved for dress-up functions only. I've since toned down my eyeliner game quite a bit; lip color is a lot easier to wipe off before you sweat it out at the gym than eye makeup (hello, raccoon eyes!).
My latest lip crush is the Lip Elixir line from Maybelline. They're highly pigmented and come in tubes that look like a lipstick, but they're actually a gloss! I'm usually pretty hesitant about glosses and opt for a matte lip color instead, but in the winter it's just too damn dry for anything matte! These glosses pack a surprising amount of moisture that doesn't dry out or fade—I often re-apply lip color several times a day, but I only find myself reaching for another coat once or twice a day with these babies. I just might be a lip-gloss convert. 

#TBT to my teenage years, right?

Wearing: Maybelline Lip Elixir in Raspberry Rhapsody, Signature Scarlet and Floral Fuchsia 
Jewelry: Capwell & Co bracelet c/o, Sequin NYC necklaces

Disclosure: I received a sample of Lip Elixir glosses from Maybelline & Refinery29. The opinions expressed here are my own; thanks for supporting the brands that make Blonde in this City possible!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Words to Live By

I've made allusions to changes in my life over the last several weeks, and I suppose it's time I share with you that the biggest was leaving my job of nearly two years for a new company. Because of the industry I work in and nature of online media these days, I don't believe in divulging much about my work life no matter if it's good or bad, but I will say that I'd grown complacent and it was time for a new challenge. It was also a surprisingly hard decision for me to make (much harder than my decision to move to NYC, which you now know was really somewhat impulsive, unless you count leaving behind my baby). 

The funny thing is, instead of overwhelming me, making a big, empowering choice has rippled throughout my life and given me (even more) confidence to forge ahead where I really want to. I feel like I'm starting to form a plan—and as someone who notoriously couldn't plan further than a week in advance for years, that's a big friggin' deal. My 25th birthday is rapidly approaching (I know, I know-that's not that old to some of you, but in my defense I'll have been out of college for more than four years by the time it hits!) and I need some direction. Instead of doing things like fantasizing about a trip to Europe or an apartment with a bedroom bigger than a walk-in closet, I want to be planning a trip to Europe and moving (minus the fees, please) to a bigger apartment bedroom. Baby steps, right? I've never been one to shy away from my responsibilities or act irresponsibly, so I thankfully don't have mistakes I need to truly own going forward—and I'm not saying I haven't made mistakes, just that I'm quite content owning them already—but I plan on being around for a while and it's time to make things happen. Unfortunately, shoe collection, that means you're going to stay stagnate for a while so I can act a little more like the adult I am.*

The things I want aren't going to come easy, but #NoPressureNoDiamonds.

*Ed. note: Since I am an adult, dinner was chips, guac & caramel Hershey's kisses while I wrote this.
Followed by hot chocolate. Baby steps, right?

*image via

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Not For Sale

 Thanks to a friend of mine investing in a leather jacket recently, I spent a lot of time both in the All Saints store and browsing online...which is how I discovered this tank, part of their Not For Sale campaign to support anti-human trafficking efforts. Not only do part of the proceeds support an excellent cause, I love the DIY-collage effect, which taps into my punk-kid roots (remember my plaid pants story? Yeah, that went even further). All this outfit is lacking are some pink or blue streaks in my hair—I bet you don't miss that, mom!
Ray-Ban Sunglasses || Francesca's Collection Crossbody || Into the Night OPI Nail Polish

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Weekend Reading

Wow, it's been an embarrassingly long time since I've done a link-love style post! I suppose I think they're so easy to do that I'll do it the night before/morning I want the post up, but somehow that never seems to happen (except this morning, thank you Sunday!). It's also tough because I prep a lot of my posts for the upcoming week over the weekend, but I never know what's going to catch my eye or happen in my life for a link love/Friday post. I've been telling myself for weeks that I'm going to spend that next weekend relaxing, getting things done around my apartment and doing some serious (blog) work...but that never seems to happen. I'm far too easily sidetracked by day trips to the Hamptons or upstate, brunches, coffee (lots) and the chance to wander the streets of NYC while it's still nice out. Oh, and let's not forget the puppies! Scout's honor (although I'm not a scout, so I don't think that holds weight here) I'm working on consistency. We all know it's not my forte.

Overwhelmed by the response this post has received from friends all over the country-if you want to see more writing like this, please let me know in the comments!

A delicious-sounding recipe for salt and honey pie.

Adding this chunky knit to my collection for winter.

Love this great list of bars that NYC's bartenders like to drink at. (A few of my favorites are on there-Amor y Amargo and Lantern's Keep!)

Have you seen Real-Life Instagram yet? Definitely a good laugh.

Bookmarking Lulu & Georgia's gift page for the holidays!

I know Dia de Muertos is over, but I still want some of these beautiful cookies from Dean & DeLuca.

Now's the perfect time to stock up on gardening supplies for next year-like this bright yellow watering can (so fun!).

Alpaca wool & silk throw, perfect for all the nights I won't want to leave my couch this winter.

What to do with all those apples from the orchard.

Great tips for removing stains from just about anything (coming to you from the queen of I-spill-on-everything).

Getting my sweet tooth fix with this baked donuts recipe.

Recently saw that Victoria & Grace have signed up for French lessons-I studied it for 10 years but am a little out of practice. Checking out classes in NYC here!

*image copyright Rose Mayo/Blonde in this City