Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Coupon Revelation

I have always tried to save money by using coupons. This was especially true when I was at college, living off campus and not on a dining plan. Since moving back home, I have tried to use them more frequently as a way to help out my parents with the cost of grocery & household products. I got caught up in the couponing frenzy about a year and half ago. I bought a trapper keeper, plastic sleeves and even joined coupon forums. I was spending a good 5-7 hours a week clipping, organizing and planning shopping trips.

I realized I wasted a lot of time trying to clip and organize coupons when many of them would expire before I got to use them. I also spent way too much time going to different stores and going up and down every aisle to see if there was that oh so treasured unadvertised deal. I accumulated a lot of health and beauty items that eventually I will use them but the overflow of closets and shelves of products is a nightmare. I will say it is nice to not have to run out and buy deodorant ot toothpaste every time I need it. Or worse- running out to get a toothbrush when yours falls in the toilet or cat litter box.

I will say this- I never did get wrapped up into buying items just because they were a good deal. We try to eat healthy and try not to eat frozen dinners or over processed foods. I have been known to try certain products because I had a coupon. Sometimes I liked it- others not so much.

All in all, a year and a half later I no longer plan out weekly shopping trips and scour the ads for coupons. I cut out what I know I will use and file them away in my binder. I do enjoy having a binder- it makes trying to find coupons on the fly easy. I still try to buy everything with a coupon if I can, but there are certain brands of products that I use and consume and will do so with or without a coupon.

One thing I have discovered is tha CVS is great for finding good deals especially when you are a subscriber to their Extracare Club. They seem to have good prices if not the lowest every so often on the brands of paper goods my house uses. I try to keep the house stocked up on pasta, toilet paper, paper towel, laundry soap and cereal. I usually have to rebuy these items once a month. It saves so much time not having to run out on random trips to buy these items.

Do you coupon?
What have you discovered about couponing?

Friday, October 5, 2012

Stella & Dot Bryant Scarf- Pink

The Stella & Dot Breast Cancer Boutqiue for October 2012 is AMAZING! I am loving all 5 pieces. The new addition of scarves to their repotoire is an A++. Not only are they soft but huge! Perfect size to wear as a shawl or blanket on really chilly days.

Stella & Dot Bryant Park Scarf in Pink & Tempest Bracelet

Shop the Breast Cancer boutique here:

Shop the entire collection at


Friday, September 28, 2012

Breast Cancer Boutique

Okay I LOVE October for the changing of the leaves, the wonderful comfy clothing, and of course apple picking! But I am so super excited for what is to come in October for Stella & Dot.

The Holiday 2012 Collection is launching on October 1st! While it is only 3 days away, I cannot wait for Monday to be here! In addition to the Holiday collection are 5 special items that are part of the Breast Cancer Boutique. The net proceeds of these items will go to the Noreen Fraser Foundation. She is notable for her work with Stand Up for Cancer.

I love the color pink and what better month to show my pink love than October. Please join me in supporting and spreading awareness for Breast Cancer.

You can purchase these items at starting October 1st.

If you'd love to see these in person at an in home trunk show. You can email me at for more information.

As always ladies: don't forget to give yourself a monthly self- exam.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

$2 Grab Bag Equals Fun for Kiki

The Michael's Craft Store near my house has been have $2 Grab Bags. They are large plastic bags filled with random items for only $2. You can't peak, all items are final sale but the thrill of the deal and the unknown is unyielding. I have purchased two on different occasions. I have done quite well. In my second one was a cute zebra print lunch tote (with a retail value of $12.99, score!) I also came across this pink puppet.

Well it is hard to find a cat toy for $2 so I was willing to see if my kitten, Kiki, would play with it. Turns out, she loves it. That little toy gets batted around my room and she just has a hay day.

The Pink Puppet- a little strange looking but kind of cute too!

Kiki doing her rabbit kick with the toy. Shortly after- she fell off the bed- toy still in her mouth

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Building Foundations

The Stella & Dot Foundation is amazing. Not only are the 'Foundation Pieces' stylish and affordable they help people in need far & wide.

This year the proceeds of the bracelet or charm will help rebuild & renovate at school in the Bronx, NYC alongside their charity partner buildOn. We can help people in our own backyard so to speak- helps those in our own country in need.

The philosophies of these three charities that Stella & Dot partners with and supports are:
  • Accion - committed to bringing affordable small business loans to micro entrepreneurs
  • Girls Inc- inspiring all girls to be strong, smart and bold
  • buildOn- breaking the cycle of poverty, illiteracy, and low expectations through service and education

Check out this amazing video for more information:

How to purchase: or contact me :)

Tuesday, July 17, 2012


About 2 weeks ago I was in San Francisco for the Stella & Dot annual sales conference called Hoopla. This training helped me to focus my business and create new goals. There were many great quotes but I wanted to focus specifically on one. This is very true in everyday life. Everyone is special in their own way and should not be compared to others.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

We love all types of Stylists!

Stella & Dot is still a baby when it comes to brands. With about 6 years behind us we have barely tapped into the accessories market here in the US. We are not even in 10% of household! This is crazy. Stella & Dot is so fabulous and jewelry makes everyone feel special. This needs to be shared; word needs to be spread. EVERYONE should know about Stella & Dot.

Do you love jewelry? Do you like meeting fabulous women? Then stella & dot is for you! I want you to become a stylist.

Feel free to check out this video: The Story Behind Stella & Dot

Let me know what you think!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Adorable Bracelets for a Great Cause!

Introducing the new Stella & Dot Foundation Bracelets!

Purchase one of these beauties and all net proceeds will go to our partners at buildOn, Girls Inc. & ACCION USA 

Available in:

My goal is to sell 100 of these bracelets. We can all help out these partners and look stylish at the same time. We all need to add to our arm candy!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Zhara Bib Necklace

I am absolutely head over heels for the Zhara Bib Necklace from Stella & Dot. I treasure this piece and wear it whenever I can. If I needed any more reason to love Stella & Dot; this piece is it.

Zhara is extremely versatile. I wear it casually with a tunic and leggings as below. This piece easily transition into a more formal work attire outfit or even for the night life. 

Zhara Bib Necklace, $248:  Stella & Dot 

Check it out here on Stella & Dot's website

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Trending Right Now: Coral

Trending now is not only coral the color but coral as a motif. This wonderful, precious aquatic plant is quite inspiration. Stella and Dot knows how to harvest this inspiration and turn it into amazing affordable jewelry. I love the Cameron Pendant. The juxtaposition of the delicate gold chain and the hand molded coral pendant allow this piece to be taken from causal day wear to evening. I love layering this necklace with their renegade cluster necklace as well as pairing it with the Carobella hoops in gold. I liked coral reef and coral the color before, but now...I LOVE it!

Stella & Dot Cameron Pendant with Carrie Bangle Trio

You too can shop for these styles at

Want to share these styles with your friends? Ask how you can host a trunk show :)

Saturday, April 14, 2012

My Stella & Dot Launch Trunk Show

Last night, I launched my Stella and Dot Business. My trunk show was so much fun. It was a blast hanging out with my favorite people and styling them with awesome jewels.

The Display

The River Lariat styled with an Infinity Dress

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

My First Stella and Dot Jewelry Experience

I received my jewelry yesterday from Stella and Dot all cutely wrapped in gift ready packaging. It felt like Christmas! I bought the Alexandria Necklace. I was not sure if I would like this but I figured it would be a great display piece. I tried it on and instantly fell in love. I finished the look off with the soiree trio ring.

Stella & Dot Alexandria Necklace and Soiree Trio Ring

Love these pieces? Check them out plus more at

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter to a new design!

Happy Easter to all those who celebrate. I have had this blog for a few months and it is still working to find its own character. I decided to switch up the colors and themes a bit to make it more personal. I love antique keys. The one in the background is a key that I designed. Let me know how you like the new site!

Hand Worked Leather Clutch

I have been in desperate need for a new clutch that is more sophisticated for going out. I have wanted to play with my scrap leather and sewing awl for leather. I decided to just dive right it. I loved using the sewing awl. It was super easy and fun. I cannot wait to use this clutch.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Stella and Dot Starter Kit

I just received my Stella and Dot Starter Kit. Cannot wait to begin my business as a Stella and Dot Independent Stylist :)

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Loving my 4 in 1 Jacket

Loving my 4 in 1 Jacket from Victoria's Secret. I took a quick snapshot this morning when I got to work. Not only can you wear is 4 different ways but it is so versatile!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Knit and Woven Spring Tunic

I have had this floral polyester fabric remnant for quite some time. I was drawn to the print but just could not decide what to do with it. I was going through my bag of rags plastic tub and found the red knit fabric. Ding! I will make a tunic that has a waistline seam. I had just enough of the red fabric for the bodice and sleeves. I also had just enough of the floral for the skirt. I had a stash of red taped metal zippers that I snatched up on clearance. I found a silver teeth one and tried my hand at an exposed zipper. I have never applied a zipper this way and it was quite interesting.

I decided to add a belt for extra oomph

I was surprised with the outcome. I tried it one just for ha-ha's to see if it would fit. Wouldn't you know, it fit and it was a perfect tunic length for my body.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

DIY Jewelry Holder

A do-it-yourself jewelry holder is super easy. I grabbed a plate, candy dish, and candle stick holder from Goodwill for about $5. Attached with super glue suitable for metal and glass and in less than 24 hours (to allow for ample drying time) you have a new organization for all that loose jewelry.

Bag o' Rags Deep Cowl Shirt

As I have previously mentioned, I have an addiction to the bag of rags bags that you can buy from Lorraine's Fabric Store. I am trying to keep up my pattern and sewing skills. I pulled some fabric that I bought in these bags and then decided on a pattern to try. I went for the deep cowl tank with modesty bandeau underneath. Not exactly my style but it turned out pretty well. I even used my new bias tape maker!

Front. It sits far out on the shoulders and since my form doesn't have arms, it is hard to get the full impression


Sewing Life and Time Saver

My first blog post was about the nifty loop turner that I bought. I am still in a constant hunt to make sewing simpler, easier, and more effective. Well, I have read about these bias tape makers. I was hesitant at first because I hate, hate, hate making bias tape. I like to finish seams with it, but there pre-packaged stuff always looks cheap against lightweight fabric and I loathe making it. I grabbed a a 1/2" bias-tape maker at the craft store and instantly fell in love. It worked fantastic. Not only did it save time, but it also made applying and sewing the bias tape so much easier.

Homemade Fabric Weight

I loved the pattern weights I used at university, they came in handy for manipulating patterns or holding down fabric as I cut. Trying to find these in craft stores is near impossible and buying them online is easy but shipping is awful. I did a search for something heavy at the hardware store. I found a plumbing flange cover thing for about $6. I glued some scrap terry cloth to it to protect the fabric from snagging. It is a great size and a perfect weight (and a lot cheaper).

Sunday, February 26, 2012

1 Yard Wonder

I love when remnants are 50% off at Joann's Fabrics. I found this gold stretchy fabric and just had to snatch it up. I wanted a flashy going out top. I put my pattern making skills to the test and came out with a success. I decided to make a belt out of remaining fabric, but this top can go sans belt if need be. 1 yard of fabric +  approx. 1 1/2 hours of pattern making & sewing = a fab draped top.

Infinity Dress Part 2

There is a fabric store in Pawtucket, RI called Lorraine's. If you have ever been, then you know the thrill of the upstairs bargain floor. They have these large plastic "bag of rags" for $1.99. Since, I have a slight hoarding of fabric problem, I bought about 6 of them. While most of the pieces or scraps of fabric are not large enough for a project, there was different scraps of the same fabric for this dress. This fabric is slightly heavier than my first diy infinity dress, but still awesome! The best part of this dress, it takes under an hour to from cutting to finishing

Legging Necklace

I completely wore through the thighs of my favorite pair of leggings. I could not just throw them away knowing I could do something with fabric. I made jersey yarn from the leg portion by cutting it into strips. Next, I tied the ends together and looped it a couple of times. Tie up the knots with another strip of fabric and voila! a legging necklace.

A way to jazz it up would be to add beads or washers before looping it.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Infinity Dress!

I have seen so many posts about styling infinity dresses and how to make your own. I decided to give it a try. I am in love. I photographed my dress on Sheila (the dress form at work) therefore I had to do some binder clip magic to make it fit her since I am larger than she it.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Lime Green Velour Shorts!

When I saw this lime green velour home decor fabric, I knew exactly what I wanted to make: natural high waisted, inverted box pleated shorts (with a cuff of course).

It took 2 years but I finally made them. I am in love :)

Monday, February 13, 2012

Boho/Gypsy Necklace

I have tons of scrap fabric and wanted to make little flowers from them. I used this tiny textile heated tool to cut circles from different materials. When I layered them on top of one another and added a button, I thought "what a great necklace idea". I have a bin full of jewelry to use for redesign or reusing into a different pieces of jewelry. I took a chain from one and little dangle beads from a few others. The finished piece is oh so chic and right up my alley for style.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Black Bean, Spinach, & Turkey Bacon Empanadas

I found a recipe online for empanadas. I had most of the ingredients but decided to switch out some for black beans and turkey bacon. I have never made empanadas and was unsure of how these would turn out. To my surprise (and my family's) these were delicious.
I started out by doing a quick soak, then cooking the black beans. I only made about 1/3 cup (dry) beans. The beans are what made the entire appetizer.

Basic Empanada Dough

Chopped Spinach: Thawed and Drained

I used green onions that I sauteed with 2 cloves of fresh garlic

Chop and Cooked Turkey Bacon

After the green onions and garlic were done sauteing, I added back in the bacon and mixed in the spinach

Mixed in the cooked and cooled black beans

Let the whole thing cool, then stir in cheddar  cheese

I rolled out the dough and cut small circles
Add the filling, make little pockets, and egg wash

20 minutes in the oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit = YUM!

These fit perfectly in your hand so no fork or knife is needed. My family and I decided to eat these with a little sourcream and salsa topping.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Homemade Dish Drying Mat

I bought a few yards of terry cloth a while back because it was on clearance. I have made a few hand towels overtime but nothing too creative. At my house we have a microfiber drying mat for dishes. It is nice but needs to be washed every few days. Trying to save money, I decided to make one with the terry cloth and a scrap of cotton fabric.

It is reversible but I decided to put the terry cloth side down

It is a perfect size for the counter space next to the sink

Quilted Napkins

I dug into my bag of scrap fabric today and pulled out tie-dye and pink fabric. I decided to make 2 small quilted reusable napkins. These pieces were not perfect rectangles, therefore I just top stitched a random squiggle pattern on one and a more geometric pattern on the other. Simple, under an hour, reusable napkins.