corner of my world

4th year re-blooming orchid!

I want to say sorry for the fact that I'm using my phone now for pictures for this blog.  My real camera will not hold a charge so this is what I'm resorting to. I will say it is about 400x easier than my other camera though.  Otherwise everything else around here is alright.

I'm over a month into being sugar free and still feel good.  Melinda and I are shocked at how much sugar is hidden in products these days. Apparently there are 600,000 grocery products available to us and 80% have added sugar.

Someone in the comments recommended I watch the documentary about sugar called Fed Up.  It really pissed me off so I guess it did its job.  It's on instant watch Netflix.  If you want to be shocked and pissed too, watch it. Here is the trailer.

So that's what's happening in my corner of the world.  What about you?  What corner are you from and what's going on there?  Fill me in. x


2014 clothing acquisitions

The label has thrived on Pierre Balmain’s principles of simplicity, luxury and timeless elegance.  

Since this blog is my journal of sorts, I wanted to list my 2014 clothing acquisitions because I really want to keep track of my spending and also, to keep me in check for this year.  I say acquisitions because there are a couple of things that were given to me as gifts.  Nevertheless, they count as important parts of my wardrobe.  I'd say 2014 was a great year clothing-wise because I seem to have found myself...well fashion-wise that is.  Let's not get carried away Janet.

This coat.  It is one of the very best things I've ever found 2nd hand.  I found it in the dead of summer and didn't hesitate for a moment to purchase it.  Not cheap but considering the quality, not that expensive either.  I had to wait 6 months to wear it but it fits perfectly and is a forever piece.  $100

This Emerson Caftan.  I really still love this and it fits in perfectly with my forever wardrobe idea as an aging woman floating around in comfort. $40

This bird dress.  Given to me by Eshakti.  I am looking forward to wearing the daylights out of this come spring and summer.  I love that almost all of their dresses come with pockets.

This top.  Miu Miu, Christmas present from Alex and B.  Cannot wait to wear this too!

Vintage Mustard Cardigan.  I purchased this at the Pasadena City Swapmeet.  It seems to go with everything I own too. $10.

This top by Cynthia Rowley.  Purchased at Marshalls for my trip to Hawaii.  Love it because it is lightweight cotton and looks great with jeans.  $15

This maxi dress, made by Michael Kors $39 and this carry-on, Target $20. Both purchased for Hawaii.  Am probably going to sell the maxi dress on eBay soon.

This top free from Eshakti. Their sales drive me crazy but the company has such a great service with their semi-custom clothing and wide range of sizes.  The actual garments are very, very well-made and the fabrics are wonderful as well.  

This silk maxi.  I was so thrilled the day I bought it and now I'm like what was I thinking?  It's gorgeous, don't get me wrong but I really don't have much occasion to wear a silk maxi.  I don't regret it but it's borderline.  $50

This blouse.  I really love this vintage floral blouse.  I've worn it with my herringbone jacket a few times and it has such great possibilities.  $5

I bought these kitten heels on Saturday at the Goodwill for $6.  I'm including them here because I think they'd go great with the above blouse and that miu-miu top.

Total (including kitten heels) $285. 
*ooops forgot about the vintage sequin top $20
and 2 pair of jeans for the GW $6 ea = $12
Total $317

So that's it.  Honestly, I thought I had spent less, so laying it all out like this is good for me.  Thanks for reading and all your great comments.  A girl and her blog could not ask for more generous readers.  x


chinoisiere chic

Every once in awhile a dress comes along that takes my breath away. The above dress does that.  I love anything and everything chinoisiere.  Does this dress even know how awesome it is?  I can see this in the Spring/Summer and I can see it in the fall with a brown cardigan and at Christmastime with a red cardigan.  I'm sorry if you are right at the start of a no shopping resolution but I have to share this.  eshakti has released their new spring line and they have some very pretty things. So if you are new to their site and would like, you can use this referral link and get a $35 discount on anything from their Spring line. Remember they have ready-to-wear and also custom sizing from 0-36w. This link is only good for new shoppers though.  Damn.


things i find in the garbage

I found this old frame in the garbage.

I came across this blog the other day called, Things I Find in the Garbage.   I think you are going to like it. Martin makes a living off what the good people in Montreal throw in the garbage. Granted, it is a humble living but it's enough to support his simple life.  It's what he finds and how he finds it that is so fascinating. I cannot imagine putting anything valuable in the trash, but lots and lots of people do. My guess is that whatever they are throwing away is no longer of use to them at that moment. Here are his top finds for 2014Prepare to be amazed.

Here are links to his Ebay and Etsy Stores. The best part about him is that he is so humble and does this mainly to keep worthwhile things out of the landfills and has deep beliefs about preserving history and caring for the earth. Whatever he finds that he can't use or sell he gives away to friends or charities or for free on craigslist.

I think one of his most fascinating finds (btw they are all fascinating) was a box of 150 love letters written during WW2. He gave them to his friend Courtney and she made a blog dedicated just to these letters called My Darling Sheila. You will not believe how beautifully written the letters are. They take you back to a time and place that is so far removed from our instant social media lives. To think that they were in the trash.  Her blog is right here.

So my question to you guys is...have you ever thrown anything out that you have later regretted? During our move to this place, I accidentaly threw out the only photo album I had that contained any pictures of my parents. I still cannot believe I did it and if I think about it for too long I start feeling sick. I've always wondered if someone found it...

So go take a look and say hi.  You'll never look at garbage the same way again.


day 5 - a forever wardrobe

I never set out to create a Forever Wardrobe, it just sort of slowly evolved. Little by little I noticed that whenever I purged, the things that made the cut were things I could picture myself in when I was older. And now that I am older, I'm glad I did.  So the idea just grew from that.  For instance when Dani gave me this dress, I knew it'd be in the Forever section of my closet.  So while I'd say it took a good amount of time to get to this point I do love it.   Some of the common traits that each piece has is that it has to fit perfectly and yet have some room for growth around the middle, which they say is inevitable. So I guess the word forgiving comes to mind.  Also, great fabric that will last and be comfortable and for the most part can be laundered at home.  Classic styles don't hurt either.  While I love the ladies of Advanced Style I know I'll never be one of them.  If I'm lucky I'll still be wearing my herringbone jacket at 90 with a pair of jeans.  If you want to waste precious time you can look at all my Fashion Over 50 posts right here.  Looking back over them I like some and cringe at others but I can definitely see myself in most of it when I'm in my 70's and beyond.  So my advice to anyone that is younger reading here would be to hold onto things that you can see yourself growing into. And that's pretty much all there is to it.  Plese tell me your wardrobe secrets!


day 1

Hydrangeas picked this morning from the garden
I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season and didn't overdo it last night.  I unfortunately behaved myself.  If you are interested, this is what I wore...

Today means a fresh start, possibilities, change, challenges, energy, excitement...I love it all.  It seems like every new year I start out with a bang and some things I hope to accomplish stick and others fizzle, but even knowing that things may fizzle, I still love the freshness of it all and love a good list of resolutions.  If only a couple of things stick this year that'll be great.


Eliminating sugar from my diet.  I actually started this 2 weeks before Christmas on a whim and I can't believe the difference in the way I feel.  Larry actually thinks I didn't catch the flu but rather that was my body's reaction to sugar withdrawal.  I guess we'll never know but the big difference is that when eating sugar throughout the day I'd feel my energy start lagging and it felt like the only thing that would jump start me would be food.  It was a kinda up and down feeling all day. That dragging feeling is gone and I feel even all day. The hunger pangs between meals are gone,  and tto top it off, so far, I'm not missing it at all.  My dessert at night has been a big juicy orange, which taste like candy.  Even at our fancy dinner last night I wasn't interested in the dessert.  So I guess the lesson is that if you eat sugar you will crave it and if you don't you won't.  Who knew?  So this week I'm doing a thorough pantry purge of lurking hidden sugars.


Taming my wardrobe.  It's gotten a little out of hand these last few weeks.  That happens when every major holiday, your birthday and wedding anniversary are within weeks of each other.  The rest of the year it's like the Siberian desert around here, but right now it's overflowing.  I love pretty much everything in my closet.  I have been slowly creating what I call My Forever Wardrobe.  It's filled with what I think are classic pieces that work for me.  In fact when I'm thinking of adding to it the first thing I do is ask myself if I'd wear it when I'm 70.  If not then it doesn't make the cut.  Is this weird?  So my resolution is to maybe weed out a little but overall be content with what I've got.

The rest of my resolutions are to complain less, stop interrupting and to accept things just as they are.

What do you have up your sleeve?


what to wear to a holiday brunch

My friends at Eshakti sent me this darling dress to see how I would style it for the holidays.  With our mild temps here in Southern California it wasn't that hard.  I knew I could put a little cardigan on and be good but then I asked myself what would Ralph do?  I think maybe he'd tell me to put on my old RRL plaid workshirt and tie it at the waist.

So I did.

Right now Eshakti is having a site-wide sale with up to 70% off.  Plus if you are new to the site you get a $35 sign up discount.  They have that great tailoring service that is only $7.50 to customize all their dresses.  So maybe pop over and take a peek.  I adore this one too.

I'd also like to thank everyone for all the well wishes for me getting over the flu.  It kinda threw me for a loop right before Christmas but everything worked out well.  I haven't been really sick (except for allergies in the spring) for over 8 years straight so I'm not complaining.  Well maybe a little.

See you soon for my very favorite time of year...January 1st!



in bed

3 days before Christmas I'm in bed with the flu.  I missed a beautiful day of lunch and the ballet and instead spent it on the bathroom floor.  Today I'm feeling somewhat human again.

One of my very favorite websites I read had a new posting today. They don't post often so it's like a little present.  If you are anything like me you will like the entire site.  Read here.

Also, Ellie has a new post up today (yay).  It's her love story, read it here.

Donna has been writing little stories on the twelve days of Christmas which are so charming.
Read here.

That's all.  Hope you are not sick.  See you soon. x


how to make a nature box

This is that gift I told you I was making.  Look, I'm no good at crafts but this was easy.  You could use an old cigar box if you had to but I wanted it to be a little fancier.  I got the idea when I saw my grandaughter picking up little rocks and a chicken feather when we were at Farm Sanctuary. That reminded me of what my boys used to do and to be honest I still do it.  So I thought I'll make her a pretty little place to keep her collection.

I found this box at an estate sale for $3.

The top was a little marred so I bought a sheet of bird paper from a local gift shop.

This would be perfect and was only $4.

I used the lid as a template to cut the paper to size and then tore around the edges because I read that the glue would adhere better.  Then I diluted some regular white glue with a little water and brushed it on.

I placed the paper on top and smoothed out any bumps.  When it was dry I put a couple of coats of paste wax on it.  I'm sure you could varnish it too. I put a small magnifying glass, a little notebook and a sea shell that her dad picked up and saved when he was around her age to help get her collection going. She's a very contemplative little girl so I'm thinking she is going to like this.  :)



another estate sale

This weekend we took off early in the morning and drove out to Palm Springs to go to another estate sale.  You never really know what to expect at these things.  Some look good on paper and turn out awful and vice versa.  But I was hopeful and a drive to Palm Springs is always good anyway, so off we went.  The lady that lived here was a clothing designer and bought the house from Errol Flynn in 1963.  Turns out the house was very cool and her closets even cooler.  There were more clothes here than in any other estate sale I've ever been too.  The closets were bursting with 3 generations of clothing.  Everything was Dior, Saks, I. Magnin, Bill Blass, Oleg Cassini, Balenciaga, Galanos.  Not a Target label in sight. There were over 150 pair of designer shoes. Thank goodness she was one size smaller than me because otherwise I may have gone crazy.  On top of all this there were her own designs. Adelaar was one of the largest sportswear companies in America during the 60's and 70's. There were literally hundreds of her blouses here. Brace yourself and let's take a gander...

This rack. That silver mink trimmed concoction is a dress not a coat.  Weighed a ton. How about the British flag evening gown.  So crazy, so good.

This is one of her Adelaar blouses, they were $5 each.  I couldn't resist this RL looking fall blouse. Will be perfect with my herringbone jacket and a pair of jeans.  

Excuse this poor photo but I had to try it on as soon as we got home.  My birthday present.  It took quite a bit of nail biting and back and forth to get the price down to $50 but I did it.  It's a 1960's 100% silk maxi in perfect condition. Maybe never even worn, as the tag was still on it.

The belt!

Ok, so the rest of the house was very good too.  You can't see the view through these windows but this is what it looks like...

Another home, another well-lived life.  As I've said before, estate sales used to make me sad but now I look at them as a tribute to the person and inspiration for my own life.  Use your best stuff!  This home is def a tribute to one really well-lived life.  Bravo.

Also, this little guy kept begging me to take him home, so I did.  x