Monday, April 24, 2017

Gingham Bow Top

Today I'm wearing the cutest gingham top gifted from Shein. If you love a peplum, bow, or gingham, this top has it all! I've always been a little hesitant on ordering from Shein because the prices seem too good to be true, but their selection is great for those trendy pieces you don't want to invest in. They are feeding my closet with all my ruffle and bow needs right now! I recommend looking at the measurements and photos of other people wearing them and know you'll have to steam or iron them when they come in. I would also recommend paying the extra $2 for "insurance" the first few times you order to get an idea on their sizing. For my first purchase, I didn't read the measurements and ordered a size up because I was expecting everything to run small like sizes in H&M. That doesn't seem to be the case. 

For sizing reference, I'm usually a size 4-6 or small and I'm wearing a small top. Since this top is open in the back, you don't have to be too careful looking at those measurements, but I would recommend measuring your arms because that's the one area you may feel snug in if you order the wrong size. The top fits somewhat loose and boxy throughout the body, but the peplum detail keeps it flattering and feminine and I think the break up of gingham is a nice touch. 

Also, the middle bow aligns perfectly with my bra strap, so no worries there if you don't want to wear a tank underneath when it warms up for summer. 

And no, I didn't spend $2,000 for the popular Chloe Drew bag. This one a $30 dupe gifted from the same place! As a heads up, you just tie the metal chain in a knot to the handles. It took this blonde here a moment to figure that out :) Next on my list are these bow slippers, a dupe for a $70 BP version and a $200+ Kate Spade version!

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shein gingham top, shein review, bow tops, Chloe drew dupe, bow wedges, strawberry chic
shein gingham top, shein review, bow tops, Chloe drew dupe, bow wedges, strawberry chic
shein gingham top, shein review, bow tops, Chloe drew dupe, bow wedges, strawberry chic

xo Amanda John

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Spring Neutrals

 I've been eyeing these bow wedges since last year in navy, and when I saw they came out in this blush neutral I knew I had to splurge! I wore them for the first time at a wedding last weekend and had no issues with my feet the entire night. The leather is so buttery soft! 

I haven't been in a Charming Charlie is a pretty long time. I didn't realize there was one right down the street from me, so when their PR started to send me a few new arrivals I wanted to check out the store and see what else they had. Y'all, I went crazy in there! So many cute and affordable things for Spring. This top is one of the items I bought. I love the neutral leopard print and of course the sleeves, do you see that little ruffle detail? I always thought of them as a jewelry store, but they have way more to offer as far as gifts, clothes, and decor. Be sure to follow me over on Instagram so you don't miss a gift card giveaway to Charming Charlie on Saturday. 

I finally shopped the Sugarfix + Target and I love the two necklaces I picked up (1 | 2).  I'm not surprised though, combining Bauble Bar with Target prices and it's a win-win. 

xo Amanda John 

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Wedding Shoes

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I was never that little girl growing up dreaming about what my wedding would look like. Of course, I dreamed about who my husband would be, and no lie I thought about my wedding shoes. I always wanted to get a pair of designer shoes for the occasion. I mean after all, if you can't splurge on your wedding day then when can you?

For my birthday every year my Mom and I take a trip to Phipps Plaza and Lenox to shop the after Christmas sales. There are always a ton of designer shoes on sale, so with a wedding in mind, we browsed them all hoping to find a great deal on a designer pair I'd love to wear on my wedding. Most of the options we found were a little too high fashion for me (here's a visual... haha!). On our way out, I thought I'd make one last look in Jefferys, a store I've never been in.

A sparkly pair of shoes caught my eye, and even though they were in my wrong size section I decided to look at them anyway. Turns out, they were in my size and marked down 50%. Mom and I felt like it was a Cinderella moment, and I knew I found the perfect heel to walk down the aisle in. Although a part of me was scared for my little feet making it all day in them ;) I was so happy to find them with my Mom, because our favorite thing to do together is shoe shopping. We wear the same size and always share our closets.

I know no one else will see them on, but to me, it was totally worth the splurge.  I really wanted all the pretty shoe shots I constantly pin on Pinterest. I knew I wanted a shoe I could wear again on special occasions, so I didn't really want anything satin because it seems too formal for date night. It depends on your personal style, but I'm a girly girl at heart and will have no problem wearing a little sparkle on my feet with jeans!

The same birthday Tim gifted me these Keds to wear because he knew I wouldn't last in heels all night, and my wobble would have probably been subpar if I tried to stay in them and I couldn't have that! 😜.  Today I wanted to share a few quick tips I used to get a few extra miles in your wedding shoes so you can pick the shoes of your dreams and not worry about your feet.

5 Tips for Comfortable Wedding Shoes 

#1: Break them in 

Wear them around the house daily starting a few weeks before your wedding. I would put them on while vacuuming or cleaning around the house to gradually get my feet used to them. Like I needed an excuse to pull them out :) I wouldn't wear them outside because you want to keep them clean.

#2: If they feel snug in certain areas, wear them with socks 

I wanted to widen my shoes a bit because I was #blessed with a bunion, so I slipped on socks while I walked around the house in them. It worked like a charm after only a few wears!

#3: Add protection 

After wearing them around the house, you'll be able to notice certain spots that continue to hurt / blister / turn red. You can apply a little moleskin to these areas to add a barrier to these sensitive spots. Of course, if you have strappy shoes this will be more difficult to conceal, so if you don't want to get creative with your scissors you can also try a little deodorant to these areas so add a little barrier between the two. I'd also recommend adding in a sole cushion, but make sure your feet have enough room with all these new additions! Depending on your shoe you may want to wait until after the pretty pictures are taken before adding your protective layers.

I purchased these to protect my heels in the grass, but I didn't even make it out the door with them on because they kept popping off. At that point I was getting frustrated with a few things (you can watch my wedding day vlog here), so I remember throwing it somewhere and not using them :) I'm not sure if I didn't apply them the correct way or not, but they obviously were not helpful to me.

#4: Bring a backup 

 You do need to consider the hem length of your dress if you're going with this option, but I was changing into a shorter dress to dance in any way. I changed into my Keds for the garter toss to give them a little spotlight, then changed into my reception dress to get to dancing comfortably.

#5: Aspercream

 I didn't have to use it, but I did purchase and bring some in case my bridesmaids or I needed it that night. I've heard it's the same ingredients inside Sole Serum, and it's a fourth of the price on Amazon.

Wedding Shoe Inspiration 

You can check out my wedding Pinterest board here to see all of my inspiration. It was so fun pinning and dreaming up ideas when I was first engaged, but let that go once you get deep into planning or else you'll be changing your mind and adding too many last minute details to your plate. 
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1 | 2 | 3 | 4

Designer Wedding Shoes

Affordable Wedding Shoes (Under $200)

Comfortable Wedding Shoes:

xo Amanda John


Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Floral Lace One Shoulder Top

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embroidered top, one shoulder top, loft outfit, pink accessories
embroidered top, one shoulder top, loft outfit, pink accessories, strawberry chic

Blue and White stripes are always popular during spring and summer. Add in a little one shoulder embroidered detail and this top is right on trend for the season. I added my favorite pop of color with these blocked sandals and cross body bag I found at the outlet. 

Unfortunately my top is currently low in stock (sizes L, XL, XXL are available) but I waited for them to restock when I purchased so I'm hoping they will again soon! I'll let you know over on Instagram as soon as it does.

This post was scheduled for yesterday, but I fell asleep about an hour after getting home. I think it's pollen season making me so sleepy! 

xo Amanda John 


Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Bow Tied Sweater

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loft cold shoulder sweater, spring sweater, affordable cold shoulder sweater, strawberry chic
loft cold shoulder sweater, spring sweater, affordable cold shoulder sweater, strawberry chic

Sorry in advance for all of the Loft tops coming your way, but I've been loving all of their spring pieces! I haven't shopped there in a really long time, but now it's been my go-to for clothing because I can wear most of them to work as well (minus this one).

This bow-tied cold shoulder sweater is infused with silk, um yes please! And the best part? It's currently an extra 50% off and under $30, no code needed! I normally don't like v-neck tops, but the cut on this cold shoulder sweater is so flattering.You can adjust the ties if need be, so I think it will work on many different frames. It fits TTS. 

You probably recognize these Sam Edelman heels from last season, but they'll easily be a staple again this year. They're somehow really comfortable and I also own them in gold. I found these at the Saks Off Fifth outlet and always regretted not getting them in a more wearable color since they're so easy to wear. I took it as a sign I needed both :)

My rose gold sunglasses are super cheap from Charming Charlie (currently 2 for $15), along with these gold hoop earrings. They sent me a little spring gift box and these were my two favorite items that I can't stop wearing.  I also just picked up this strawberry print scarf from there. 

xo Amanda John 

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

FabFitFun Spring Unboxing + Review

The marketing has finally worked and I decided to give the FabFitFun box a try. I've always been hesitant to try subscription boxes because I didn't think they were worth the money. I'd rather put my money towards something I know I want instead of having someone select things for me; however, after watching an unboxing video on youtube, I thought this box seemed a little different and I wanted to see what it was all about myself. This is my first seasonal box, but here's a quick review for those who are interested! You can scroll down to see what was included in my spring box. 

What is FabFitFun?

FabFitFun is a seasonally selected subscription box including full sized products in the beauty, fashion, fitness, and wellness categories. Each box is $49.99 and retails for over $200 worth of products. The seasonal boxes are sent out in March, June, September, and December. They send out a billing notice 2 weeks prior to give you a heads-up, and you can also cancel at any time.

When you first sign up you'll receive the Editors Box so you don't have to wait until the next season to receive something.  You can receive this box for $39 with code SPRINGTIME at checkout.

What makes FabFitFun different from other subscription boxes?

This is the first subscription box that I've paid for because I've never been a huge fan of boxes that only include samples. I have a huge box under my bathroom sink full of all those online order samples that will most likely never use, especially if I haven't already. The fact that this box includes full sized products along with lifestyle products (coffee mugs, scarves, jewelry, and fitness) FabFitFun is definitely what makes this box stand out from the rest.

I also discovered that most of the products included also come with a coupon to shop other products from the brand if you're interested. All the codes will show up in your dashboard and most of them are pretty substantial discounts. For example, I can shop 40% off at Dr. Brandt and 50% off site wide to Emerald Duv, the maker of the gold cuff below. 

Do they include things I'll actually like?

Apart of the appeal is that you'll get to try out new things. You take a personal survey, where you get to rank the type of products you're most excited to receive in your box with categories including beauty, skin care, cooking, tech, home, bags, jewelry, etc. They ask you pretty detailed questions about your skin type, types of workouts you enjoy, and sizes as well. So really, you never know what to expect. You can also select add-ons at certain times to include items you've seen in past boxes for a discounted price. I did that for a rose gold workout waistband for $9 in this box!

If you want more control over what's included in your box, you can sign up to be a select member where you pay an annual fee of $179 and you can personally select your color preferences. If you go this route you will also get priority shipping and early access to add-ons. I wanted to receive a box before deciding to commit to a year, but now I'm definitely upgrading to save $20 with the yearly subscription. 

I've heard a lot about it, but is it actually worth it?

Each box retails for at least $200, and from what I've seen they usually include way more than that.  You don't have to be a finance major to know that's a good return of investment. To be honest, the Editors Box didn't really stand up to my expectations, although there were a handful of good products I still use three months later that I would have never know about otherwise. The spring box completely made up for those expectation AND some! I think the seasonally selected boxes are more fun because you get them at the beginning of each season and it seems so fresh and new. 

Now let's see what's inside!

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The first thing I noticed was this Gypsie Roundie, a cute circular blanket to take with you on your next trip to the beach or an outdoor concert. I love the color combo of mine! I've even seen girls wear them as a beach cover up or a shawl on social media. 

I've never heard of this brand, but in my last trip to Sephora, I saw they were a new brand to the store so it made me really excited to try it! It smells heavenly, infused with coconut and argan oil. 

This box included a full box of 4 Karuna hydrating masks, which was the first product I tried after a long weekend in Savannah. It's another brand I've seen in Sephora but have not got around to trying. I love that I got a whole box to try, verse just one mask. I'm not a huge fan of sheet masks because you have to be extra careful when wearing them, but they're great for traveling because you don't have to worry about liquids. 

The box could have included a red, nude, or neutral pink lip kit and I'm so glad mine included the neutral pink! I haven't tried the lip stain yet, but I've been loving the gloss this past week. I couldn't believe this valued at $48, basically the price of the box. It seems a little more coral toned, which is great for my fair complexion.

I'm excited to try this exfoliator because I know Dr. Brandt is a great brand and I'm all about trying new exfoliators. Not to mention, this little tube will run you $85 if you want to buy it yourself! Say what? Let me remind you this box only costs me $49. Another product I'm pretty excited to try are these nail polishes from Deborah Lippmann. I've never purchased one of these because you can basically go get a manicure for the price of one, but I'm not complaining that I finally get to try them out. 

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There are four different quote options for this Milly bathing suit clutch (or keep your sunscreens together / use it as a makeup bag). One of the options I thought was hilarious was "resting beach face". The gummy vitamins aren't my favorite because they're very sweet. I talked about my thoughts on gummy vitamins in a different monthly favorite post but these are even sweeter than the others I've tried. I'm just not sure how I feel taking a vitamin that includes sugar and corn syrup. But if you struggle with taking vitamins these are way easier to remember to take because you don't need water and they taste like candy. 

* * * * * 

This box retailed for $378. Let me remind you I only paid $49 for the box! Not going to lie I was half expecting to cancel the subscription after my first box because I didn't think it would be worth it, but now I can't wait to receive the summer box! I definitely think it's something you should at least try once.

If you want to give FabFitFun a try, I'd love for you to use my link along with code SPRINGTIME to get $10 off your first box. I'll also get a discount on my next box if you do.

Have you tried FFF?

xo Amanda John


Monday, April 3, 2017

Spring Wedding Outfit + How to Style a Skirt and Top

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how to style a skirt and top, strawberry chic, loft vine top, peplum skirt
how to style a skirt and top, strawberry chic, loft vine top, peplum skirt
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It's officially spring wedding season. I was never really into weddings until I became a bride myself, but now I'm so excited to attend them and see what my friends come up with!

 For the last wedding I attended,  I tried to find an outfit at a few different Atlanta malls for the occasion. I never settled on one because I didn't really want to buy a dress for an occasion I'll only wear once.  Granted, I have more weddings coming up, but I knew I wouldn't want to re-wear the same dress to them because, #Instagram. 

I decided to go with my go-to combination pairing a top and skirt. Going with this lets you have so much more depth in your wardrobe because you can always pair them differently and I won't feel like I'm re-wearing the same dress again.  I can wear this top with white jeans, a different skirt, denim shorts in the summer, or even to work. By the way, I think you can get away with sizing down in this shirt. I'm wearing a small here but wish I purchased a xs.

While I was at this wedding a few people asked me if I was wearing a dress or if it was two separate pieces. A friend said she has so many skirts but never the right tops for them and vice versa. So today, I wanted to share my tips and some inspiration to make the top and skirt combo work for you!

Pick one that's patterned: either the top or the bottom, but not both unless they're the exact same print from the same line. Florals are always a good option for a spring wedding. 

Find a skirt that fits higher up on your waist; I always wear skirts at the narrowest part of my waistline. It's very flattering and doing so will also give you the illusion of longer legs! Tip: you may need to size down if you wear it at your natural waist.

If you're not sure, still try it on! I didn't think this top would work with this skirt, but it was the best option in my closet so I tried it on and loved how it turned out. 

Always tuck it in to define your waist: I love this trick because you're guaranteed some shape at the smallest part of your waistline.  Tucking tip: I always pull my top down completely through the bottom of my skirt to take away some of the bulk at the waist. The only time I don't tuck in the top is if I'm wearing a bodycon skirt and I want to cover my backside. If your shirt isn't looking right, you can also try wearing a belt with it. 

Picking a skirt: Since it was a day wedding, I didn't want to wear a pencil skirt because it would look too much like work wear. A midi skirt would have been cute, but it would have looked really unbalanced with this somewhat flowy top. I went with a shorter (but still wedding appropriate) skirt to give me a little more shape. I would definitely not recommend wearing a tulle skirt to a wedding, otherwise, I'm all about them. I wanted to buy this skirt for the occasion but it was online only and I wouldn't get it in time. 

Shop Skirts

Shop Tops

xo Amanda John