Monday, November 30, 2015

Holiday Cozy Outfit + J.Crew Chateau Parka Review + My Picks from the Best of Cyber Monday 2015

J Crew Chateau Parka Review
Coat: J.Crew | Sweater: J.Crew (40% off today with code MONDAY) | Denim: 7FAM (40% off today) | Boots: MICHAEL Michael Kors | Bag: Coach | Sunglasses: Karen Walker (part of Shopbop's Cyber Monday tiered promo with code GOBIG15) | Necklace: Slate + Earrings: Gorjana via Rocksbox | Watch: Michael Kors

Yesterday was a gray and chilly day in Denver, so Sean and I headed over to Union Station to get brunch and check out the pretty Christmas decorations. We braved the cold for a few photos but mostly stayed cozy inside. It was the perfect opportunity to test run my new Chateau Parka.

Cozy details

I've had this coat on my wishlist since last winter, and I waited and waited for it to go on sale as the $365 full price was a bit steep. Unfortunately, it never seems to be part of the percent-off promotions J.Crew often runs. I waited until they had a tiered promotion and went for it then. When it arrived, I was happy to see that the quality was similar to my other higher-end wool coats. There is some pretty topstitching on the zipper placket and all seams appear to be well-constructed.

I did find that there was a less expensive version of this coat at J.Crew Factory: the Vail Parka. I had the opportunity to try it on in person in regular sizing, and while the finishing wasn't quite as nicely done as it is on the retail version, and the wool isn't quite as heavy, it is still a very cute coat, and the price point is much more affordable. It is down to only $115 for select colors ($139 for the rest) today as part of their Cyber Monday deal.

Hello Framboise Holiday

I took my regular J.Crew coat/dress size, 00P, and it fit me as expected. I saw some reviews that advised to size down, but I disagree. The 00P was the right size for me, especially given that in cold temperatures, I want to be able to layer or wear bulkier sweaters under it. At 4'11", the petite sizing was the right choice for me, but if you're a couple inches taller, I'd consider trying this coat on in regular sizing to make sure the overall and sleeve length work for you.

Another common complaint I noted in reviews was that the body of the coat was "too big." The body is an A-line, swing coat shape and bells out at the bottom. For me, I liked the silhouette and found it looked flattering and different from my other wool coats. The swing shape and fur-trimmed hood were what ultimately convinced me that this piece would be something unique in my coat closet.

Cozy parka + turtleneck

Yesterday's temperatures only reached a high of 27°F/-3°C, and I was comfortable taking an evening walk in this coat with a chunky sweater underneath. I was lamenting my failure to bring mittens or gloves, but the front pockets kept my hands relatively warm despite a chilly wind. I was warm and dry even when a light snow began to fall, but heavier snow or wetter conditions would mean bringing out my water-resistant down coat or parka.

J Crew Chateau Parka Holiday

I'm so excited for decorating my house this week now that we've returned from our Thanksgiving weekend in the mountains. I am trying to get my shopping done as soon as I can to make the Christmas season as stress-free as possible. If your inbox looks anything like mine, making a plan for shopping today is a struggle. Here's my culled and curated list of Cyber Monday deals and my favorite pieces from each:

Hope you find some great deals and stay warm this Cyber Monday! x, Tam

Friday, November 27, 2015

Thankful + Best of Black Friday 2015

Tam + Dachshunds

Hi, there! Hope all of my fellow American readers had a happy and delicious Thanksgiving. I wanted to take a moment to say thank you so very much for following along with this little blog of mine. It is hard to believe I've been blogging for over four years now--time has flown! I am so thankful to have your support, especially when life gets in the way of writing and posting pretty pictures. I'm thankful for all the imperfect moments (like the one in the photo above--I don't recommend shooting outfit pics with two rambunctious dachshunds "helping") that remind me that life is about so much more than beautiful photos and perfect styling.


Okay, now onto what you've come here for: Black Friday sales. There are so many great deals out there today, and shopping online means you get to stay in your pajamas, sip hot cocoa, and not worry about battling the crowds at the mall. Here are my favorite sales and some curated picks from each. I'll continue updating througout the day today as I spot more great buys.

Nordstrom: their fall sale is still in full swing, but now selected items are an additional 25% off (so great!). The sale includes the Bobeau wrap cardigan I talked about in my last post, now down to only $29 with lots of sizes available. A couple of my favorite pieces that rarely go on sale are also part of today's deal: the Frye Melissa Button Boots (see my review) and the rag + bone Harrow booties (see my review).

Madewell: get 25% off your entire purchase, including already marked down items. I have my eye on this gorgeous Zip Transport Tote as a potential new work tote and this cute checked cape scarf as an easy one-size-fits-all gift.

Anthropologie: 25% off everything with code SHOPTOIT. An all-inclusive sale like this one is very rare for Anthro! The Carissima Sheath I wore in Paris is still one of my favorite pieces in my closet. I also have my eye on this simple and chic red dress for my office holiday party.

Shopbop: has a spend-more-save-more promo today. If you spend $250, you will get 15% off; $500+ gets 20% off; and $1,000+ gets 25% off. This offer includes all full-price and sale merchandise. A few of my go-to pieces: Karen Walker sunglasses, Clare V leopard clutch, and these distressed J Brand skinnies.

Tory Burch: 30% off if you spend $250+.

ASOS: 30% off everything with code BLESSED. I recently ordered a couple dresses for holiday events: this black velvet beauty and this sparkly one that seems perfect for New Year's Eve.

7 For All Mankind: 40% off full-price items and 20% off sale. I wear the 7FAM jeans I have constantly, and I'm a huge fan of the Slim Illusion Skinny in Stark White--of all the white jeans I've ever tried, these are best fit and most durable (see them on me here and here).

J.Crew: 30% off your entire purchase + 40% off sale items with code HOLIDAY. I'm currently loving my petite Excursion Vest I bought earlier this fall and the Chateau Parka I received last week. These red plaid pajamas are on my Christmas list, and these luxe leather gloves would make a perfect gift. Almost every year, I buy Sean one of J.Crew's men's cashmere scarves--they are amazingly soft and hold up well with wear.

Happy Black Friday!

x, Tam

Monday, November 23, 2015

Cozy Cardi + Current Sale Picks

Long Cardigan + Ankle Boots

Loren Hope Necklace

Stripes + Long Cardigan

J.Crew Tissue Turtleneck + Nordstrom Leith Waterfall Cardigan
Cardigan: Leith via Nordstrom | Turtleneck: J.Crew in XXS | Denim: Topshop (same style in black)
Boots: rag + bone | Bag: Valentino | Necklace: Loren Hope | Earrings: Nadri
Bracelets: David Yurman | Watch: Michele

Hi, guys! Hope you had a wonderful weekend. I started a little holiday shopping and worked on getting my guest room ready for family and friends coming to visit. Today I am sharing a cozy outfit from the weekend and a few of my picks from the various sales that are currently happening.

Nordstrom has been having a fall clearance sale for the last week or so, and a couple of my orders came in at the end of last week. After seeing how great it looked on Jean, I decided to try out this cute waterfall maxi cardigan. Although it's not petite-sized specifically, I thought the XS was a good (oversized) fit on me. I'm also loving this Bobeau wrap (I went with XXSP) I got in a couple colors; I'm planning to pick up a couple more to give as holiday gifts. I noticed my recently-purchased Cole Haan flats (so comfy!) are on a price-matching promotion right now, and this pretty Tory Burch bucket bag is also part of the sale and on my wishlist at the moment.

J.Crew is also having its share of sales in anticipation of the holiday weekend. Many newer arrivals are 30% off, and sale items are up to 50% off. I ordered the turtleneck tee I'm wearing in this post a while ago, and it finally arrived last week. After wearing it for a day, I already have a few more on my wishlist. It seems like it'll be a versatile layering piece that should be wearable all the way into spring. My other picks: the Cambridge Cable turtleneck sweater I wore last week, this hat I have been loving (coming to the blog soon), this cozy flannel button-down, and my favorite tee (all available in regular and petite sizing).

Have a wonderful week!

x, Tam