Reader Five Faves: December 2020

December readers' Favs

The last bit of housekeeping to close out 2020 around here is to round up our Reader Faves for December. Seeing what you love every month is one of the most helpful bits of information because it allows me to continue to build on the pieces you actually have.

What’s so interesting about this collection is that it has the makings of a capsule wardrobe. 

The pieces and colors work together beautifully, and the prices are fantastic. 

Five Faves of December 

 

December readers' Favs

 

Let’s talking quickly about capsule wardrobes. They are all the rage over on Pinterest. The basic idea is that you have a thoughtfully selected small grouping of clothes that work together in multiple ways creating a minimalist’s dream closet.

The thing is, I’m not a minimalist. Instead, I focus on balancing value and practicality with the fun and drama of fashion. I’m much more concerned with feeling fabulous than limiting your choices. And personally, I enjoy the process and creativity that comes with getting dressed. 

However, there’s a lot we can learn from the idea of a capsule wardrobe. I don’t like waste and want you to get the most out of your purchases. So I look at the concept of the capsule wardrobe more broadly. Instead of one capsule, I look to have  a series of capsules, layering in pieces that help expand your options based on what you already have. 

Our December Faves is a great example of pieces that work together, and also will help build out additional capsules when paired with pieces you already own. 

Popover Tunic

J. Crew High Low Popover Tunic

 

Popover Tunic Top, $32 

When I think of a daily “uniform” my mind goes right to a crisp white button down. The look is timeless but they can feel restrictive. That’s why something like this tunic top is such a great piece. You get the same classic look with a little bit more room to move and a more practical length to pair with slim line pants. 

This one from J.Crew Factory is only $32 and comes in sizes XS – 3X. 

Zella Live In Leggings

Zella Live in Leggings

High Waist Leggings, $59 

It would appear we’re not starting off 2021 any different than how we ended 2020, and with many of us headed into winter picking up some fresh loungewear is a must. 

I have loved these leggings for years. They are just the thing to pair with an oversized sweater, or tunic (like the one featured above). They are high waisted, thick, but not uncomfortable, and was so well. 

Available in XXS – XXL here and plus size up to 3X here

Riding Boots

Sam Edelman Penny Boot

Penny Boot, $190 

I was so thrilled to see a riding boot on the list. After a year of slippers and sneakers, these stunning yet sturdy boots will be a favorite for years. I have a similar pair from Frye (in black and cognac) and I’ve worn them for almost a decade. 

Wear them with leggings or skinny jeans paired with a long sweater or blazer. 

Crewneck Sweater

J.Crew Factory crewneck sweater

 

Crewneck Sweater, $19.50 

Another J.Crew Factory find this crewneck sweater is delicious. It’s so soft, simple and only $20. Easy peasy.

The weight of this allows for lots of flexibility. You can certainly wear it alone, or layer it over a blouse or under a blazer (like the one below!). Available in several colors, camel (above) is my favorite, in XXS – 3X.

Oversized Blazer

Old Navy Houdstooth Oversized Blazer

 

Oversized Blazer, $35 

One of my absolute favorite finds of the year is this oversized blazer from Old Navy for only $35. It’s perfect for throwing on for Zoom calls (ugh) or pair with dark jeans, the J Crew sweater, and riding boots for lunch outside.

To get the most out of this piece, pick it up in the houndstooth option (above); you’ll get more looks out of it since it will pair better with black, dark denim, and even – if you’re brave – white bottoms.

Available in regular, tall and petite. 


Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please  follow on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.


Our Wardrobe Challenge Starts on Friday! 

The Ten List: January 2021

It takes courage to say yes to rest and play in a culture in where exhaustion is seen as a status symbol.

Happy New Year, Ladies! 

We’re back and kicking off 2021 with The Ten List, my fun and thoughtful monthly round up of style, beauty, food and entertainment. 

It takes courage to say yes to rest and play in a culture in where exhaustion is seen as a status symbol.

1. The Importance of Rest

On New Year’s Eve morning, my husband took two of our girls over to my parents’ house; a tradition started years ago when Bri and I were fun and young enough to go out for the evening.

These days, we use the time without the kids to clean up from the holidays and get ready to return to work and school.

This, of course, was my plan, and as usual, I had a long to-do list.

But as I came back after waving goodbye from the driveway, I noticed the stillness of the house. It was maybe the quietest and most peaceful it had been all year.

My oldest, who is almost 14, was asleep in her room on the other side of the house. There was no chance I’d hear from her until at least noon.

So, I poured myself a fresh cup of coffee, slipped back into bed, and started to read my book.

What an indulgence, I thought. I decided to give myself an hour.

I can’t tell you the last time I read anything for pure enjoyment before 10 pm.

Within minutes, without even trying, I fell asleep.

I slept for seven hours.

Out cold.

My husband came home and was in and out of our room all day, and I didn’t budge until I woke up at 4 pm.

Every woman I know is the center of her family’s universe, no matter how big or small, or your stage or season in life. We’re like an invisible forcefield around those we love, keeping the wheels turning and ensuring everyone is safe.

2020 tested us. We were asked to do the impossible, and we did it. That looks different for all of us, but make no mistake; we have all been running on fumes for months, propelled only by adrenaline and our primal instinct to take care of our families.

The toll the last year took on us doesn’t disappear just because the ball dropped or we’re ready to turn the page. There is no magical reset. I’m sure you’re exhausted. I know I still am.

So, as we enter 2021, I’m not making any resolutions or elaborate lists of goals like I usually would. However, I am committing to taking better care of myself and not in a face-mask-and-manicure kind of way.

Instead, I’m easing up on myself, permitting myself to rest and recharge when necessary.

I hope you consider something similar after the year we all just had. It’s time to heal; it’s time to refuel; it’s time to take the many lessons we learned in 2020 and turn them into action. For me, one of those lessons means radical self-care since I now truly understand all I’m charged with protecting.

Affordable Vitamin-C

Vichy LiftActiv Peptide-C Ampoule Serum Anti Aging Concentrate

2. Peptide-C Anti Aging Ampoule Serum, $30 

Vitamin C is an essential skin care product for those of us trying to age gracefully. When used correctly, it helps promote collagen, reduces fine lines, and evens out skin tone. It’s beneficial if you have hyperpigmentation and brown spots because it inhibits melanin production in the skin. I tried several last year (including Goops new and expensive GoopGlow which I was underwhelmed with). 

I discovered Vichy’s Peptide-C Anti Aging Ampoule Serum after going down a rabbit hole of online videos, and it’s terrific and affordable. Use in your morning skincare routine, after you cleanse, and before moisturizer and sunscreen. It not only helps smooth and brighten your skin but will prevent future damage from free radicals and daily pollutants.

3. Most Popular Shoes of 2020 

Birdies the starling loafer in black

3. Birdies Starling Loafer, $95 

I love running end of year reports to see the overall theme of the year. I would have beat money on joggers being the top-selling, most popular item for the year, but I was wrong. That honor belongs to the Birdies Starling Loafer. I lived in these beauties over the holidays, and they are just the thing to get us through these last few months of staying close to home when you want something better than a slipper but just as comfortable. 

* Run true to size.

4. Favorite Instagram Account of 2020

 

Go Clean Co Instagram

4. Go Clean Co Instagram

I cannot emphasize enough the value and satisfaction I get out of the Go Clean Co Instagram page. A Canadian home cleaning company with an incredible 1.6 million followers, it literally teaches you to clean, with tips that have saved me time and money.

And I have cleaned everything in my house, from the hood over the oven to the parts of my front loader I didn’t know I was allowed to touch. The biggest takeaway has been discovering the power of powder Tide. Add a tablespoon to scorching hot water, and you can clean almost anything – it’s incredible and easy.

5. Affordable Parka

Old Navy Fur Lined Parka

5. Faux Fur Lined Parka, $65 

I love, love, love this Faux Fur Lined Parka from Old Navy available in regular, tall and petite. It’s warm and cozy, chic and polished and on sale for $65. If you are looking for an affordable and stylish coat to keep you warm for the rest of the winter, check this one out. 

$30 Satin Pajamas

 

Satin pajamas in champagne

6.  Satin Pajamas, $30 

I bought five pairs of these Satin Pajamas from Amazon, including the “champagne” color above. They are affordable (under $30), wash well and feel so luxurious. I did a quick purge of any ratty or worn out PJs and replaced them with these. They run true to size. 

What I’m Cooking

What I'm cooking: Home Chef meals

7. What I’m cooking: Home Chef 

If you’re as tired of taking out as I am and committed in the New Year to try to get more organized with meal planning, give Home Chef a try. I ADORE it. We’ve tried every single box/meal/subscription service, from Blue Apron to Freshly and Home Chef blows them all away.
First, the variety and quality of food are top-notch. They make it easy to substitute the protein, so if you don’t want red meat or pork, you can replace it with chicken, and you can customize the serving size.

Second, you have options with the kind of meal; they have meal kits, 15-minute meal kits, and oven ready dinners. For the meal, kits order the exact serving size (I order four servings, which is enough from two adults, two kids, and a toddler). For the oven ready dinners, I order six servings, which feed us all with a little leftover for a single lunch the next day.

Use this link to get $35 off your first order. (NOT SPONSORED)

What I’m Binging

What i'm Watching: The Haunting of Bly Manor8. What I’m Binging: The Haunting of Bly Manor

I should say, What I Binged because we watched this stunning 7 episode series in three nights. I also watched The Haunting of Hill House, which I enjoyed, but The Haunting of Bly Manor is a beautiful, tragic “ghost” story you can get lost in that left me crying by the last episode. 

What I’m Reading

What I'm Reading: The End of Her

9.  What I’m Reading: The End of Her 

Before I passed out for seven hours on New Years Eve, I was looking forward to finishing The End of Her by Shari Lapena. I highly recommend if you enjoy page-turning thrillers. I was hooked right away and was proven totally wrong when I got cocky and thought I had the story all figured out. 

10. Our Free New Year Wardrobe Challenge Starts Friday!

 

I’m so excited to host the first Wardrobe Challenge of the year! Join me right here, every Friday, for the next four weeks as we pull your personal style, closet and wardrobe together. Click here for all the details


Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please  follow on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

 

 

 

Reader Favorite Beauty Buys of 2020

Top Beauty Buys of 2020

Long time readers know I have a not so secret obsession with skincare and makeup, but only share the products I absolutely love. It’s why there are so few beauty posts on the blog, once I discover a product that works I stick with it.

A few years ago, I shared my nighttime skincare routine and it quickly became one of my most read and shared posts. Since then I’ve highlighted what I would call “hero” products, the ones the make the biggest difference, the ones I never want to be without. 

And as it turns out, many of those products are your favorites too. So today, as we continue to tie a bow on the year, I’m rounding up your favorite, top selling products from 2020.

Buy these for yourself and indulge in some much deserved self-care or pick them up as a gift for someone you love this holiday. 

Reader Favorite Beauty Buys of 2020

Top Beauty Buys of 2020

Around the time I turned 37, I started to take extra good care of my skin. I began to invest in better products, most of which are clean, and diligently use them every day (or as directed).

I lived for years with adult cystic acne, and it all but destroyed the little self-esteem I had. It’s why for years, I never posted pictures of myself here on the blog.

But now, at 41, my skin is the best it ever looked. I’m able to wear less makeup and really let my skin show, freckles and all.

It’s incredible what it’s done for my confidence levels.
Below are the top-selling products from 2020, with a short description of why I love it. If you have a product you love, be sure to share it in the comments.

Vintner’s Daughter

Vinter's DaughterVintner’s Daughter, $185 

Vintner’s Daughter was my first big beauty splurge and, to this day, is the product I am never without. It absolutely changed my skin, healing redness, acne scars, and uneven skin tone. You only need a tiny amount, so a bottle can last about three months. Apply morning and night after you wash your face and give it a few minutes to soak in before you layer on anything else.

Caudalie Instant Detox Mask 

Caudalie Instant Detox Mask

Caudalie Instant Detox Mask, $39 

Every Sunday night, I use the Caudalie Instant Detox Mask to draw impurities and toxins out of my skin. It’s an uncomplicated process that takes about 10 minutes but really works. Priced at under $40, it’s an affordable indulgence that would make a great gift or stocking stuffer.

Goop Himalayan Salt Scalp Scrub

Goop Himalayan Sea Salt Scrub

Goop Himalayan Salt Scalp Scrub, $42

My FAVORITE personal care indulgence is the Goop Himalayan Salt Scalp Scrub. Use once a week instead of your traditional shampoo to rid your scalp of buildup. It smells incredible, like an effervescent spa experience. And your hair and scalp feel so fresh and clean. Also makes a great gift. 

Drunk Elephant Waterfacial Mask

Drunk Elephant Waterfacial Mask

Drunk Elephant Waterfacial Mask, $52 

I became a big fan of Drunk Elephant this year and have heard from so many readers who love this “mask” too. But it’s not really a mask. Instead, it’s the last step in your nighttime routine to lock in moisture. It’s beneficial this time of year when it’s cold out, and we’re cooped up inside with the heat on – a recipe to dry out our skin. To use, layer this on a few minutes after you apply your night cream, and it acts as a layer to keep your skin hydrated overnight.

Tatcha Oil Cleanser

Tatcha Oil Cleanser

Tatcha Oil Cleanser, $48

I do a double cleanse every night, which simply means I was my face twice, first with an oil-based cleanser, and then I follow up with a gel cleanser. The Tatcha Oil Cleanser is incredibly gentle yet effective. It removes makeup, including stubborn mascara, and leaves no residue on your skin. I’ve been using it for years and love it so much I won’t even consider trying a different brand.

Wander Beauty Mascara

Wander Beauty Mascara

Wander Beauty Mascara, $26 

I searched high and low for a mascara that created thick, long lashes without looking like spiders were growing out of my eyes, and Wander is my winner. I don’t want a dramatic eye; I don’t want to look like I’m wearing lash extensions. I just want to look like myself but a little better. This is a straightforward formula that kicks your lashes up a level – no more, no less.

Benefit Ka-Brow

Benefit Ka-Brow Pomade

Benefit Ka-BROW Pomade, $14 

If I had to pick only one product to use forever, JUST ONE, it would be Benefit Ka-BROW. Your eyebrows give your face structure, they highlight all your other features, so defining them will help bring life to your face. This product is a game changer for your brows, allowing you quickly fill them so you look natural, youthful and polished. 

Kosas Lipstick

Kosas Lipstick

Kosas Lipstick, $28 

Finally, I’m the biggest fan of Kosas lipsticks because their formula is clean, AND the pigment is on point. It’s rich and creamy like a traditional lipstick without any of the toxins. I regularly wear their red, called “Electra” and have heard how much our readers love it too. A close second is their pink called “Rosewater” which is a pretty wear-with-everything neutral. 


Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

 

Reader Favorite Style Buys of 2020

Top Style Buys of 2020

Every December I round up the 12 most popular items on the blog from the year. No surprise here, 2020’s best selling items focused on casual comfort, and polished pieces to dress from the waist up 😉 

As we finally put a bow on this ridiculous year, below are the dozen pieces our community loved the most, still in stock with size ranges for all. 

Reader Favorite Style Buys of 2020

Top Style Buys of 2020

Stay-at-Home Loafers

The Starling Loafer

1. The Starling Loafer, $95 

Designed for at home entertaining these loafers are chic and feel heavenly. 

Layer Building Tee 

Old Navy Thermal Tee

2. Thermal Tee, $12 

Ideal for wearing with anything from jeans to leggings to pajama bottoms, available in nine colors in all sizes.

Shorts Alternative

 

Cropped Linen Pants

3. Cropped Linen Pants, $30  

If you are in a warm weather climate you can still pick up these lightweight pants in regular, tall and petite sizes in an array of colors and patterns. 

Sweatshirt with Style

J.Crew Button Collar Sweatshirt

4. Button Collar Sweatshirt, $29.50 

We all scooped up this Button Collar Sweatshirt for long days at home doing all the things. This is getting limited in size but still available up to a 3X. 

Under $30 Dress

Old Navy Sheath Dress

5. Sheath Dress, $27 

Right now this dress is about $25 (with the additional 20% off at checkout), available in all sizes including petite and tall. It’s a no brainer if you need a comfortable dress to wear as we slowly go back to “normal.” (See how to wear it here.)

Romper for Grown-Ups

 

Striped Terry Romper from Amazon

6. Terry Romper, $29 

I LIVED in this terry romper all summer, in olive and stripe (above). Think of this like pajamas you can leave the house in, it would be great to pack if you are spending the holidays some place warm. 

Designer Sneakers on Sale 

Cole Haan Margo Leather Sneaker

7. White Sneakers, $90

Elevate your casual outfits with these sophisticated, comfortable and year-round sneakers on sale for $100. 

Quilted Jacket

North Face Quilted Jacket

8. Quilted Jacket, $139 

If you are looking for a jacket that is lightweight AND will keep you warm consider this option from North Face. It comes in black and navy, runs true to size and acts as the perfect layer for running errands in and out of the car. 

Simple Jersey Dress

 

Boden Jersey Dress

9. Jersey Dress, $85  

This Boden Dress gets dozens of FIVE Star reviews for comfort and style. It’s an easy piece to dress up or down and will pack like a dream. 

Pant of the Year

Banana Republic Cargo Jogger

10. Cargo Jogger, $69.50  

2020 introduced us the beauty of the jogger, a polished alternative to sweatpants and leggings. This pair from Banana Republic is the hands down favorite. Your best color choices are navy (above), black, and olive. 

Basic Building Tee

J.Crew Cotton Tee

11. Cotton T-Shirt, $14.50 

This basic building tee comes in seven colors, but stick to neutrals like black, navy and white (above) in sizes up to 3X. 

Oversized Blazer

 

Old Navy Oversized Blazer

12. Oversized Blazer, $45 

Finally, this oversized “boyfriend” style blazer from Old Navy is available in regular, tall and petite. Readers loved the versatility of wear, from light washed jeans to pull on black pants, you can wear this to the office or on the weekends almost all year long. See outfit options here


Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

Great Gifts for Under $50

Gifts under $50

I’ve been going back and forth with how to present a gift guide this year. Many influencers are rounding up massive lists with overwhelming options and prices that don’t seem appropriate. 

But, 2020 seems like the year to give a simple, useful, thoughtful, maybe even handmade gesture. So today I’m highlighting my favorite gifts to give, for neighbors, family members, friends, teachers or co-worker, all for under $50. 

Great Gifts for Under $50

 

Gifts under $50

My family usually buys gifts for everyone, but we decided to stop this year. My brothers and I are at a point in life where we don’t need anything, and the gifts we’ve started to give like tickets to shows, a trip to the spa, or a gift card to a new restaurant, aren’t going to work. 

We’re still giving gifts to the kids, and Santa is coming for Vivian since she is turning two –  I am having too much fun restarting holiday traditions with her. 

Other than that, I plan to take care of everyone who takes care of us and give money. Tipping well during the holidays is more important than ever. I’ll also drop off a few of the items below to neighbors and friends. 

 

13 Simple Gift Ideas for Everyone On Your List 

Leather Wallet

Leather Wallet

Leather Envelope, $17

My mom taught me if you give cash as a gift, try to put it in something that can be opened and used later. If you are also planning on giving money this year, consider picking up this lovely, handmade leather envelope. Available in several colors and under $20 from Etsy. It’s affordable, can be beautifully wrapped and used later to store coupons or receipts. 

Clean Beeswax Candle

beeswax candle

Beeswax Candle, $25

Early this fall I shared my affection for the Pumpkin Spice candle from Basic Bee Candle Co. Well, their Christmas Tree scent doesn’t disappoint either. It smells heavenly, is totally clean, handcrafted and burns perfectly. I just ordered another five to have on hand for the season. 

Hot Chocolate

Belgian Drinking Chocolate

Belgian Drinking Chocolate, $22 

Terrain is a gorgeous nursery and gift shop with locations in PA (local to the Philadelphia area), Connecticut, Maryland, and California. It transforms into a sparkling wonderland during the holidays, and their gift shop is full of special and unique finds. I stopped in earlier this week and picked up a few things, including this indulgent drinking chocolate as a treat for my kids. It’s a “sweet” gift you can wrap in a ribbon and leave on a neighbor’s door step. 

Everything Beautiful In Its Time 

 

Everything is beautiful in its own time

Everything Beautiful In Its Time 

Everything Beautiful in Its Time, by Jenna Bush Hager, is a real treat. It has no political agenda, but rather, it dives into the lessons she and her family learned from both sets of grandparents. In a year that’s shown us the importance of family, it was a beautiful reminder of why family is everything, how important it is to live with intention and remember that what we do today creates a lasting legacy for the people we love most.

Hand Painted Oyster Shell 

Oyster Shell Ring Holder

Oyster Shell Ring Holder, $44  

Obsessed. The most overused word on the internet, but that’s what I am, obsessed with these hand painted Oyster Shells. You can keep them by your sink, bedside table, or on a stack of books on your coffee table. You have your choice of dozen of blue and white patterns to go with almost any decor. 

Personalized Stationary 

Personalized Stationary

Custom Stationary, $15.50

One of my favorite gifts to give is customized stationery. It’s one of those things you may not think to buy for yourself, but are always happy to receive. And what’s better than sending a thank you note on a custom card? Great for friends, kids, or teachers. 

Silk Sleep Mask

Silk Sleep Mask

Silk Sleep Mask, $50

I’ve given this to so many girlfriends, and every time it’s opened with such genuine excitement. It’s another indulgence you would probably not buy for yourself but happily use when you have it. It comes in nine colors and, if you order it from Nordstrom, opt for a gift box to make your life easier. 

Personalized Cable Clip

Personalized Cable Clip

Personalized Cable Clip, $8 

“Where is my charger?!?!” Literally, every day of my life, this is screamed a dozen times from one side of my house to another. So I ordered these personalized cable clips (along with extra cords) as stocking stuffers for all of us. 

High-End Hand Wash 

Aesop Hand Wash

Hand Wash, $39 

Listen, I know $40 is an absurd amount of money to spend on hand soap, but the scent is divine. Since 2020 was the year of hand washing, why not go out with a bang? I have this in my guest bathroom, and even my kid’s friends comment on how wonderful it smells. It’s a thoughtful hostess gift if you’re looking for something other than (or in addition to) a bottle of wine.

Pine Tree Cutting Board

Pine Tree Cutting Board

Pine Tree Cutting Board, $33.50 

Another special hostess gift, this Pine Tree Cutting Board is handmade, under $40 and so sweet. You can use it for a small cheese board, or leave it on an open shelf as seasonal decor. 

Truffle Honey

Truffle Honey, $38 

If you’re looking for a gift for the foodie in your life, you can’t go wrong with Truffle Honey (or Truffle anything). It makes everything better, especially drizzled over warm brie on a holiday cheese board.

 

Leopard Print Blanket

Cozy Blanket, $94 ( on sale 50% off)

This is a dupe of the always popular Barefoot Dreams blanket (that retails for $180). Right now it’s on sale for 50% off. It makes a great gift for a new mom, your best friend or your teenage daughter. 

 

Rainbow Tunnel

Rainbow Tunnel, $38 

Finally, I can’t say enough good things about this Rainbow Tunnel by Grimm’s Spiel & Holz of Germany. If you have a baby or toddler on your list, there is nothing better than well made, open-ended play toys. And as a parent, receiving something that doesn’t require batteries or turns on randomly in the middle of the night is the real gift 😉 


Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

 

 

The Best Tall Boots Under $200

The Best Tall Boots for Winter Under $200

Finding the perfect pair of tall boots is a challenge. Some are gorgeous but exorbitantly priced. Others lack any kind of practicality. And some have almost everything right but then get it wrong by adding unnecessary details.

Over the last few weeks, I’ve received many requests for a round-up of reasonably priced, tall boot options. So today I’m featuring my best recommendations, in a range of styles all under $200. 

The Best Tall Boots Under $200

The Best Tall Boots for Winter Under $200

To get the most out of your purchase, look for a pair with clean lines, in either black or tan, with enough comfort so you can stand all day in them.

Basic Boots 

J.Crew Knee High Boots in black

Basic Boots, $150 

When I search for a tall boot to recommend, this is what I want: clean, polished, and will work with anything. My challenge is usually the price. Everything I like is $400 – $500 +, which doesn’t work for most people.

That’s where these J.Crew boots come in and save the day. They are high quality, comfortable boots available in black or tan for under $200. In fact, they are on sale for an extra 20% off making them about $120. 

Pair them with tights and a dress, or wear over skinny jeans or leggings and a long sweater. 

Have wide calves? Give these BØRN boots a try. 

Riding Boots

Sam Edelman Riding boots in whiskey

Riding Boots, $190 

Years ago, I bought Frye Riding Boots (in black and cognac), and they are hands down one of my best purchases. These flat, rugged boots are casual. I wear them frequently with jeans or leggings, when I want something better than sneakers. Or you can wear them with tights and a sweater dress, etc.

They get more comfortable with every wear and polish up beautifully. 

For a slightly more affordable version, try this similar style by Sam Edelman (above)

If you take good care of either pair, you’ll have them for a long, long time. 

Suede Boots

Sam Edelman over the knee suede boots

Suede Boots, $200 

If you are looking for a pair in suede, this stretch pull-on option is fantastic. They get 5-star, rave reviews for comfort and style. Available in black or tan. You can wear these with anything, from dressy to casual.

Stiletto Boots

Nine West Stiletto Boots

Stiletto Boots, $139 

Finally, if you have your basics covered and want to pick up something jazzy, these Nine West stiletto boots are the perfect combination of timeless and sexy. The Croco print adds texture and interest to a simple dress and tights. Available in brown (above) and black.

The Best Tall Boots for Winter Under $200


Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

 

 

 

Reader Five Faves November 2020

A picture showing the five top items in November

Every month, I look at our analytics and listen to your feedback to round up the top five best sellers from the previous month to help you continue to build your wardrobe.

Our little community here is unique in that I can speak to so many of you personally, in either our Private Facebook group or in our INSIDER membership.

This kind of access allows me to find out precisely what you are struggling with, searching for, and enjoying the most. So what I featured in our monthly Reader Fave round-up are not only bestsellers but most loved.

Ideally, this series should help you fill any voids in your wardrobe or discover an extra piece that will help create even more options.

Reader Five Faves November 2020 

 

A picture showing the five top items in November

For the first time in almost a year, our favorites do not feature any sweats! Instead, we have a fabulous collection of size-inclusive options, all at fantastic prices.

Please note, inventory is selling out quickly and prices are subject to change. 

Stay at Home Loafer 

The starling Loafer

The Starling Loafer, $95 

If you stay home this holiday season and entertain a smaller group, treat yourself to these loafers by Birdie. Designed to be a hybrid of a slipper and a loafer, they were specifically created for women who want to look chic but stay comfy while hosting at home.

As the brand grew in popularity, so did their assortment. You can pick up a gorgeous bejeweled or embellished option, but if you’re just starting out, go for the timeless velvet suede. And don’t worry, you can (and should!) wear these out of the house too.

$30 Sheath

Old Navy Gray Sheath Dress

Sheath Dress, $29

This Old Navy dress is an absolute steal, available in sizes regular, petite, and tall up to an XXL. The combination of a structured sheath done in a casual Ponte knit is what makes it so versatile. Wear to the office with boots, or with sneakers to run errands, and when we can start to travel again, it will make a great airport dress. 

 

Basic Layer 
J. Crew crewneck sweater

Crew Neck Sweater, $29

J.Crew Factory has long been a go-to for basics better prices. Last month I featured this extra cozy crew neck sweater, available in seven colors in sizes XXS – 3X, and everyone stocked up.

It will stretch a bit but size up if you plan to wear it as a layer over a shirt. I keep it simple and throw it on with jeans and ankle boots – and, because it’s 2020, my kids then ask me why I’m so “dressed up.” lol

Oversized Boyfriend Blazer

Old Navy houndstooth oversized blazer

Oversized Blazer, $38 

Another Old Navy gem, this oversized blazer is fun and affordable, available in regular, petite, and tall sizes. It’s supposed to be long and loose. You can certainly take it to the office, just note it will be a more relaxed look than a tailored one. I love it paired with light-washed jeans and sneakers; you’ll look super cool even if your not. 😉

 

Cold Weather Boots

Cole Haan Hiking Boots

 

Hiking Boot, $150

Finally, so many readers wrote in requesting recommendations for a cold-weather boot. I found these Cole Haan Hiking Boots on sale at Nordstrom, with dozens of five-star reviews, in black, brown, and white (above). They are shearling trim, waterproof, warm yet lightweight. 

Personally, I wear the Sorel Joan of Arch boot (in black). Our winters on the east coast range from mild to back-to-back blizzards, so I’m happy I have them. They are, however, very heavy. If you need something to keep you warm but lightweight, go with the Cole Haan; if you need a serious, stomp-through-the-snow kind of boot, go with the Sorel. 


Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.