How To Shop Savvy

In a poll on the Scribbles From Emily facebook page, the majority of you said that your biggest hangup when it comes to fashion is that it’s too expensive. Agreed. When I saw that this sweet little silk dress costs a whopping $1,169, I almost choked. But that’s the sale price, it’s 65% off the original $3,340.

Floral-print plissé silk-chiffon dress by Luisa Beccaria
Luisa Beccaria Floral Print Dress on The Outnet

So yes, fashion can be very, very, VERY expensive. But it doesn’t have to be.

You just have to be a savvy shopper.

Savvy?
Today I’m going to share with you my top tips for shopping savvy, both online and in store. 
Online
1EbayI just recently discovered the addicting joys of eBay shopping! After a few attempts, I won an auction of 12 new with tags or new without tags Old Navy tops for $30. Through Groupon, I got a $15 eBay gift card for $7 a week or so earlier, so with the shipping included, the final price came to $24, $2 per shirt! There is SO MUCH on there that it can be overwhelming, so here’s a couple excellent how to posts that will get you started. 

    • How to Shop on eBay from Already Pretty. I read this post before I got started, and it helped tremendously. Especially the tip about making sure you don’t bid more than you can pay, especially if you’re bidding on more than one item at a time!
    • How to Bid, Win, and Save on Ebay from Haute Lunch. I read this post after I’d started eBay shopping, and Tara shares some great reasons to use eBay, as well as some new tips that I’ve found to be very helpful. 

2. Ebates. I first heard of ebates through the Frugal Living blog community. When you navigate to stores through the links on the ebates site, you can earn “cash back” on your purchases. If you’re going to buy something online anyway, it makes sense! It’s easy to sign up, and almost every store imaginable is on there, including eBay! I haven’t used it much, and so far I only have 9 cents coming to me. But I’ve heard from a lot of other bloggers who have saved big time using it. In addition to cash back, ebates also lets you know of sales and special coupon offers for around 1,200 stores.

3. Store Websites. I have found that sometimes stores put merchandise on sale that you won’t find in the the store. Also, many times they offer special discounts and web exclusive sales. So if there’s a store I really enjoy going to, I always visit their website.

4. Email Lists. If I really like a store, I sign up for their emails. Yes, it’s one more thing cluttering up my inbox, but some stores offer exclusive email coupons, such as 50% off at Modcloth, or 40% off your entire order at LOFT. And my favorite, free jewelry with any purchase from Charlotte Russe. I love the emails from Francesca’s Collections, not only because they always have big coupon discounts, but because they’re so pretty! They’re almost like scrapbook pages.

5. Amazon. Did you know there’s actually a lot of clothing for sale on Amazon.com? I didn’t until I started reading fashion blogs, and over and over, people mentioned getting items on Amazon. The bonus of shopping here over eBay is that you don’t have to bid (even though on eBay you sometimes have a “Buy it Now” option too). Since there’s a lot to sort through, make your search as specific as you can. I’ve used Amazon to find a particular color of tank that I just can’t find in stores. Plus, if you use Swagbucks, you can earn $5 Amazon gift cards just by searching with the swagbuck search bar. 

In Store
1. Goodwill. Ok, so you all know that I’m a big fan of Goodwill. Sometimes I approach Goodwill as a hunter: I look for specific things, such as a ladle or spice rack. But other times I go as a gatherer: I browse the housewares looking for unique objects, I browse accessories and shoes, and I dig through jewelry looking for vintage finds. Now I always look through the dresses, and sometimes other clothing items catch my eye. I do not walk each row and sort through all the tops and bottoms. That’s just overwhelming to me. I only venture in there if I’m hunting for a specific top or bottom. Many Goodwills have weekly sales on a certain color of tag or a certain week number, and sometimes everything in the store is 50% off on Saturdays. Keep an open mind when you go, and you’ll be amazed at what you find. 



2. Consignment stores. Sometimes these are similar to Goodwills, but usually they sell nicer items, and sometimes they sell brand names only. To find shops in your area, look through your phone book, or try local.com. One of the benefits to shopping at consignment stores is that you can also sell your clothes there. That way you can make a little shopping money.

Here’s a great post on shopping at thrift stores: 
Rebecca Van Ommen/Lifesize/Getty Images
3. Estate sales/Garage Sales. Here in Arizona it seems that garage sales run year round, except when it’s really hot in the summer. I have yet to go to a garage or estate sale when I actually have money to spend, but I hope to soon. I’ve heard so many stories from other bloggers about the amazing vintage finds they get at estate sales. Garage sales often run cheaper than Goodwill, and many times they are a great place to buy children’s clothes or maternity clothes. 


4. End of season sales. When the first daffodils are finally blooming, who really feels like shopping for sweaters? Not me. But, that’s when I find the lowest prices!  Each season, stores come out with their new lines, and the old ones go on sale. The longer you wait, the lower the price. I watch the store emails I get, since they always announce their new seasons, and then I know it’s time. Sometimes I might not get to wear it until next year, but then it’s always a nice surprise to get it out and wear it for the first time. I’ve bought a few Anthropologie sweaters this way; I’ve paid $20 for sweaters that would otherwise cost upwards of $80. While it can be hard to feel in the mood for buying off season clothes, get in the mindset of gathering, not hunting, and I think you’ll be very pleased with the prices you’ll find. 

I know this is just scratching the surface of being a thrifty shopper, so feel free to share your best tips in the comments, or even share links to posts on the subject. How do you save money on your shopping? What’s the best bargain you’ve bought recently?

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Dresses from Shabby Apple

How to Choose Colors that Flatter Your Skin Tone {Giveaway}

I hope you all had a lovely Easter!  Brian and I enjoyed the Easter breakfast, choir cantata, and drama at our church yesterday. Brian was in the drama, and it was definitely out of his comfort zone, but he did a great job! I was so proud! 
Alright, now we are week two of our fashion series. This week we will focus on shopping, and there’s a new giveaway and a new homework assignment, but wait ’til the end of the post for that. 

PhotobucketBut first, I feel like our discussion of style personality and body shape isn’t complete without talking about colors that look good with our skin tone. This has always been tricky for me. I have a hard time knowing if something is washing me out or if it isn’t “my” color. So I learned a lot from researching for this post!
To determine which colors flatter you, the first step is to find which “season” you are. Skin tones are divided into four seasons: Winter, Spring, Summer, and Autumn. 

Winter

Features:

  • You have pink or blue undertones.
  • Your complexion could be pale white, yellowish-olive, or dark. 
  • You have dark eyes.
  • You have dark hair. 

Good colors:

  • bright, striking, and pure colors
  • White, red, bright blue, bright pink, and bright yellow are good choices
  • Jewel tones, such as dark red, emerald, and teal are also flattering.
  • Avoid subdued oranges and pale neutrals, such as beiges. 
Spring
Features:
  • Your skin has golden undertones.
  • Your complexion is creamy white or peach.
  • Generally, you have blonde, strawberry blonde, or red hair. 
  • You have freckles and rosy cheeks. 
  • You have blue or green eyes. 
Good colors:
  • Warm colors like peach, coral, golden yellow and golden brown.
  • Light colors, such as pastels, are flattering.
  • Blues and greens, especially aqua and teal, bring out the red highlights in your hair and accentuate your eyes.
  • Watch out for dusty hues, such as rose or dusty blue. These can wash you out. 
Summer
Features:
  • Like winters, you have blue or pink undertones.
  • Your skin is pale and pink.
  • You have naturally blonde hair, or naturally brown hair. 
  • You have light colored eyes. 
Good colors:
  • Pastels and  neutrals with warm, pinkish undertones.
  • Lavender, plum, browns, and rose.
  • Avoid orange and colors that are too golden. 
  • You can wear bright colors as well, such as hot pinks, bright blue, and green.
Autumn
Features:
  • You have light brown, dark blonde, or red hair.
  • Your skin has golden undertones.
  • Unlike springs, you have brown or hazel eyes. 
Good colors:
  • Choose colors with gold undertones.
  • Camel, beige, gold, orange, and dark brown flatter your skin, hair, and eyes. 
  • Avoid dark colors with blue undertones, such as navy.
  • Jewel tones such as plum and teal are flattering.

Universally flattering color:
  • Eggplant.
Amethyst

Amethyst from ShabbyApple.com

More Info

Homework
The rest of this week, we will be talking about shopping. On facebook, several of you responded to my poll about fashion hang ups, and by far, the biggest hang up was the expense. So this week, your homework is to shop your closet! 

You will need:
  • A timer
  • A clean, large, flat surface, such as your bed or floor.
  • A digital camera
Here’s how it works:
  1. Set a timer for 30 minutes. 
  2. Dump your drawers and closet onto your bed so that you can see everything you have. I know it makes a mess, but it is the best way to really see what’s there! (Don’t include your shoes or accessories at this point)
  3. In the time left, see how many combinations you can come up with. You can do tried and true combinations you wear all the time, but try stretching yourself to come up with new outfits.
  4. Snap a quick picture of each one! 
  5. After the timer runs out, look through your pictures. Pick your favorite NEW outfit, and add accessories and shoes.
  6. Take a picture of yourself wearing it, or if you’d rather not post a picture of yourself, just take a picture of the outfit. Then post it to the Scribbles From Emily Facebook wall so we can all be inspired by you! Let us know how many combinations total you came up with.
Once the picture is downloaded to your computer, go to Scribbles wall and choose “Photo” and upload. 
There are several benefits to this exercise. You get to see all that you have all together, and you will come up with new ways to wear what you already have. This helps prevent you from buying things you already have. You also might find items deep in your closet that you’ve forgotten about. 
Taking a picture of each outfit helps solidify the outfits in your mind, and gives you a visual reminder. I’ve read about women who put the pictures of their outfits into a photo album and keep it by their bed. In the morning, they flip through it and pick out what they want to wear that day. If you have trouble finding something to wear, maybe you should give that a try! 
This Week’s Giveaway
For this week’s giveaway, I actually shopped my bathroom cabinets. For some reason, people love giving me body spray. I’m just not a body spray person I guess, because I’ve never ever used it! I’m also not a hair product person, I keep my hair routine simple and use as little product as possible. So, this week I’m giving away: 

All this!

Rusk Priming Creme
Jergens sample of Cherry Almond lotion
Japanese Cherry Blossom body splash from Bath and Body Works
Japanese Cherry Blossom cooling mist from Bath and Body Works
Sun Ripened Raspberry body splash from Bath and Body Works
Two Ojon Hair Revitalizing Mists (weightless leave-in hair conditioner)
Sea Island Cotton body splash from Bath and Body Works
Love Spell body spray from Victoria Secret
Rusk W8less Plus (extra strong hold hairspray)

And, this Ralph Lauren bag.

Because no body needs that much body spray, I’m going to pick THREE winners this week. 

Here’s how to enter:
  • Leave a comment on this post answering the question, “What colors look best on you?”
For extra entries:

  • Leave a comment letting me know which three giveaway items you would most like to receive. {1 entry}
  • Do this week’s homework. {10 entries}

Out of 37 entries, Last week’s winner of the headband from Handmade and Lovely was:

Kasha Sue!

Bracey will have your headband in the mail shortly! Congratulations!

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free shipping on all orders of $50 or more at phil

Christ is Risen!

This song by Matt Maher is the perfect song for today!

1 After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb.
 2 There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. 3 His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. 4 The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men.
 5 The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. 6 He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. 7 Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ‘He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.’ Now I have told you.”
 8 So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. 9 Suddenly Jesus met them. “Greetings,” he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. 10 Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.”

Matthew 28:1-10

The Lamb Of God

1 Who has believed our message
   and to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?
2 He grew up before him like a tender shoot,
   and like a root out of dry ground.
He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him,
   nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.

He was despised and rejected by mankind,

   a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.
Like one from whom people hide their faces
   he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.
 4 Surely he took up our pain
   and bore our suffering,
yet we considered him punished by God,
   stricken by him, and afflicted.

But he was pierced for our transgressions,

   he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
   and by his wounds we are healed.

6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray,

   each of us has turned to our own way;
and the LORD has laid on him
   the iniquity of us all.
 7 He was oppressed and afflicted,
   yet he did not open his mouth;
he was led like a lamb to the slaughter,
   and as a sheep before its shearers is silent,
   so he did not open his mouth.
8 By oppression and judgment he was taken away.
   Yet who of his generation protested?
For he was cut off from the land of the living;
   for the transgression of my people he was punished.

9 He was assigned a grave with the wicked,

   and with the rich in his death,
though he had done no violence,
   nor was any deceit in his mouth.
 10 Yet it was the LORD’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer,
   and though the LORD makes his life an offering for sin,
he will see his offspring and prolong his days,
   and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand.
11 After he has suffered,
   he will see the light of life and be satisfied;
by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many,
   and he will bear their iniquities.

12 Therefore I will give him a portion among the great,

   and he will divide the spoils with the strong,
because he poured out his life unto death,
   and was numbered with the transgressors.
For he bore the sin of many,
   and made intercession for the transgressors.  

Three Reasons to Get out of Sweats and Into Style

A couple weeks ago, I asked the question on coffee talk blog forum: Why dress well? Does it matter?
This was my post:

What do you think? Is it important to dress well, even when you’re not trying to impress anyone? It’s tempting for me to lounge around in sweats or pj’s all day when no one will see me except my husband, and I know a lot of other women, especially moms, find themselves in a similar situation. 
But, when I do dress well, I feel better about myself and more motivated throughout the day. What about you? Do you notice a difference in the way you feel or act? Why do you think that is? Is it worth taking the time to look nice? Why or why not?

I received fabulous, insightful, and honest replies from women in all walks of life:  work at home moms, moms with young kids, moms with kids on the way, women with empty nests, single ladies, and so on. I hope you’ll be as inspired as I am!

Photobucket

1. For Others
Karen: I love to be comfy. I home school. I work from home. Who cares how I look???
BUT, when my husband and I were dating (21 years ago), I cared about how I looked. So, even if I don’t get there until 4:30 in the afternoon, I do freshen up and put on a little makeup (simple foundation, blush and mascara). He would never ask me to, but I know he likes that I care.

Elise: I don’t “dress up” but I do try to take a few minutes (if babies allow) to get dressed, brush my hair and teeth and maybe a touch of makeup. It makes me feel more motivated to do things around the house. I also don’t want my hubby coming home and me looking like I’ve been in bed all day. Sometimes the house looks like it – so I try to have one of us put together!

Chris: Working from home, I don’t do much to myself but try to look presentable for my husband when he gets home.

If I’m doing anything social or in public, you better believe I’m getting spruced up!  I love projecting an image of being well-groomed and stylish, which is how my friends view me.  It really doesn’t take that much extra effort either.  
I mean if you have to put on pants, a shirt, and shoes anyway, why can’t it be a nice updated pair of jeans (no “mom jeans”), trendy shirt, and chic shoes?!
Glenda: I am sure I’m in accord with all the Fashionistas here will agree that even going to the store, you have to look your best – it’s essential to present a quality presence to everyone you meet – you never know who that next person in the bank line is – or how they will perceive you and your professionalism.

2. For motivation
Erin and Jocelyn: Definitely, I think its a mood boost when I wear an outfit I feel good in. I work from home so its very easy to dress sloppy, but then I feel sloppy too.

Lolli: Like others, I feel better when I look nice, and when I feel better, I am more productive. It’s amazing. Sometimes I am tempted to stay in my sweats and t-shirt, especially when I know I’ll just be working from home all day. But taking a shower and doing my make-up and putting something nice on makes me more productive, I swear.

Renee: I feel like I am “Ready for the day” as soon as I have showered and put on some decent clothes. My day always goes better like this. If I wear lounge clothes all day I end up feeling yucky and I don’t do as much. I am all about the comfort especially having a four-month old to take care of. That is why my clothes consist of a lot of lululemon gear. It is comfy yet I can run to the store and it looks good. 

3. For yourself
Happy Mum: I spend my time as a SAHM (stay at home mom) and at a barn and every day I get dressed in breeches and a really nice shirt so I don’t look too “barny” and I always do my hair and makeup. I do it for me. Just me. It makes me feel better, ready to greet the day!

Shabana: Definitely, dressing up matters. You feel better about yourself and to the world you show that you’re someone who respects themselves enough to look after themselves. I work with brands. I always feel it’s so important to put out a ‘brand image’ of yourself to people. The best way to do this is by dressing the way you want to portray yourself. If you get a bit creative and put some more thought into it, then your dressing style makes you stand out from others.

Rhi: I wont leave the house not looking presentable! I work in a drive-through coffee shop and I haaaaaaate when people come by in their fleece playboy pajama pants! Or robes! Snuggies! Slippers! It’s awful! 
I’ll admit to sometimes running out in yoga pants, but nice, clean, fitted yoga pants. Not frumpy sweats. With a cute sporty top or jacket. And my hair isn’t a mess and I’m not going ANYWHERE w/o mascara on. (and right now this happens more since I have exactly two pairs of jeans I can even sort of close with my bump) I try to look cute when my hubby gets home too, cuz nobody wants a frumpy housewife….plus I cant be hoping for any fun if I look like a mess! I hoooooope I can keep it up when I have the baby…. I’m on a serious mission to be a hot mom!!!

A simple pony tail can look chic

Jackie: I do think it’s worth it … It really doesn’t even take that much time to get dressed up if you’re just light on the make-up and have a quick but cute hairdo. Putting on clothes only takes a couple minutes unless you’re indecisive of what to wear. But what’s half an hour of getting ready if it means you get to feel good, confident, productive, what have you, for the entire day!
Amanda: I can remember when my first son was born it was hard for me to even get a shower some days. I would be in PJ’s or comfortable clothing all day and I just felt blah about myself.  It took me months to get out of this rut. 
When my second son was born I was already aware of how easy it is to fall into the blah mode.  So I made sure that I got showered and dressed into regular clothes everyday.  It did not always happen first thing in the morning but I got it done.  Not only did I feel better about myself but I lost the baby weight way faster! I definitely think that getting dressed everyday and making yourself look nice helps with your overall attitude.


Sally: I think that dressing well does wonders for self-image, confidence, and mood. It may seem like work initially, but putting in the effort to assemble and wear a fun or expressive outfit is nearly always worth the effort!


There are some common threads throughout the responses, and one of the main ones is dressing well to “feel better.” That sums up why I try to take the time every day to get out of pj’s and put on makeup. How I feel about myself changes the way I respond to others. It affects my mood and my productivity. 

So why is it so hard sometimes? Maybe we just haven’t made it a habit to take care of ourselves. We’re busy taking care of everyone else, and we think we don’t matter. Or, maybe we’re just lazy. 

I do think that there are seasons during our lives when other things take precedence. But as Chris mentioned, if you have to put on clothes anyway, why not pick cute ones? Does it really take that long to swipe some mascara? 

I’ve been wearing some makeup since I was thirteen, so the idea of not taking the time to put it on in the morning is a little foreign to me, and I’ve never been pregnant or had toddlers. So, what do you think? Is putting effort into your appearance important to you? Why or why not? 

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Does This Make Me Look Fat? How to Flatter Your Figure

Who hasn’t asked someone that before?

It called to you from across the store. That beautiful, pleated, full length skirt. It seemed like a no-brainer. But then, you tried it on. Something was just….wrong. You looked short, frumpy, and squat. What happened? Or you slip into a pair of jeans, and look instantly 10 pounds lighter. You feel like a million bucks. Is it magic?

We talked on Monday about your style personality. Today, lets delve into another crucial aspect of dressing yourself well: your shape.

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Exercise won’t change this shape. It’s more of your body’s basic structure. There are four basic types, and they go by various names. I’m going to use the most common: Apple, Pear, Ruler, and Hourglass. Once you know your shape, you can find clothes that fit you better and spare your husband from having to answer that dreaded question again!

Ruler

  • Also known as banana or rectangle, ruler shaped people resemble their name. Their hips, shoulders, and waist are about the same width, and they might have a small bust.
Apple

  • Also known as “V”, Apple shaped people are wider in the shoulders and narrower in the waist and hips, with long legs.

Pear

  • Pear shaped people have curvy hips, thighs, and backside and a small waist, medium to small chest, and sloping or narrow shoulders. This is a very common shape among women.

Hourglass

  • Also known as an “8” shape, people with an hourglass shape have chest and hip measurements that are similar, with a smaller waist and a larger bust.
To determine your shape, you can look in a mirror and try to guess. If you can’t tell, have someone help you take your measurements. You can measure yourself, but you’ll get more accurate results if you get help.  Measure across the fullest part of your chest, running the tape measure underneath your arms, with your arms relaxed at your sides for your chest measurement. Measure around the narrowest part of your torso: this is your natural waist. Measure the fullest part of your hips for your hip measurement. 

There’s a few variations on these types. You could be:

  • Short Waisted- the distance between your shoulders and natural waist is shorter than average (right around where your elbow hits is average) and you have longer legs.
  • Long Waisted- the distance between your shoulders and natural waist is longer than average, and you have shorter legs.

Flaws or Features?
I mentioned last Friday that history has perceived different body shapes as “ideal” at different times. Sometimes people automatically associate a particular shape with being overweight, or skinny. This is not the case! Some shapes will allow you to hide extra weight better than others, but that’s not necessarily a good thing, considering that the health risks are still there.

I’m an hourglass, but I certainly haven’t always embraced that. I got my figure pretty early, while all my peers were still relatively flat chested, and it frustrated me that I didn’t look as good in the little tees and tops and other junior sized clothing. I felt fat, and I wanted to be a ruler. But no amount of push-ups or sleeping with my bra on was making my chest any smaller! It was hard to find bras that had big enough cups and small enough bands to fit my rib cage; most department stores didn’t carry my size, and I had to settle for ill fitting bras or pay for the more expensive Victoria Secret ones. It probably wasn’t until after meeting Brian that I began to really accept and appreciate my shape and see that having a big bust and butt could be a good thing.

Like we talked about Friday, a lot of fashion advice is geared towards fixing your “flaws.” I don’t think that having a small bust, or a big bust, or short legs, or thick ankles, really are “flaws,” it’s part of how God made us. We can try to disguise our features to create the illusion of being whatever the ideal shape is at the time, or we can embrace our uniqueness and find out what fits us best, what makes us feel the best, and what we enjoy wearing the most.

What to Wear
Feel free to try these suggestions and see what works for you; you definitely don’t have to follow them all the time. Some of my favorite clothes technically aren’t supposed to look good on me. Several of you shared in the comments that the best fashion advice you’ve received was to wear what you love and what fits. Pawsitive Life said that she dislikes fashion that tries to hide flaws, instead of “celebrating the person in the clothes.” I completely agree, so hopefully these help you to celebrate your shape!

Apple:

  • Try V necklines. Avoid ruffles on your shoulders and puffed sleeves, which make your shoulders look larger.
  • Wrap dresses and tops are a great look on you, as well as tops and dresses that tie at the waist.
  • Wear skirts and dresses to show your long legs to their advantage. A-lines that flare at the bottom will balance your shoulders.
  • High waisted tops and dresses fit you well.
  • Go for jackets and sweaters that hit below your waist.
Apple Shape stylebakery.com

Ruler:

  • Wide belts look great on you; they add definition to your waist.
  • Wrap or tie tops with V necks are a good choice. Go for these over straight cut button up shirts.
  • You’ve got great legs, so go for straight leg jeans and pencil skirts.
  • Avoid bolero jackets, they tend to make you look boxy. Instead, try longer jackets that are fitted in the waist and flare out over the hips.
Boyish figure stylebakery.com

Pear:

  • Wear bottoms that are darker than your tops.
  • Avoid bottoms with pleats and side pockets, and jackets that end at your hips. Go for long or short.
  • Wear tops that accentuate your shoulders, such as puffed sleeves, flutter sleeves, or halter necklines.
  • Skinny jeans might not be the best look for you, flared jeans are more balanced and universally flattering. You could also try a boot cut. 
  • A-line skirts, dresses, and tops are great on you.
Pear Shape Sylebakery.com

Hourglass:

  • Avoid tops with too much detail around the chest if you are busty, as well as turtlenecks and cowlnecks; they’ll make you look top heavy.
  • Along with that, avoid spaghetti straps. Scoop, V, and sweetheart necklines are flattering.
  • Good bras that fit well are extremely important.
  • Accentuate your narrow waist with a belt or sash.
  • Go for fitted dresses and tops.
  • A-line skirts and dresses are always good choice, but you can also look amazing in dresses and skirts that hug the figure.
Hourglass Shape Stylebakery.com

Short Waisted:

  • Wear long tunic tops or dresses, and avoid dresses with waistbands
  • Layer long tanks underneath tops

Long Waisted:

  • Wear different colors on the top and bottom
  • Go for shorter jackets
Universally Flattering:
  • Wrap dresses. They flatter every figure.
  • Dark denim. Always makes you look slimmer. 
  • A-line skirts and dresses. That little flare in the skirt is flattering for everyone’s shape.

Sources: Fashion For Dummies Cheat Sheet, Figure Flatter, The Ultimate Guide to Dressing Slimmer

It’s important to note that sometimes suggestions might be contradictory. Some dresses suggested for hourglass figures might have spaghetti straps, and some A-line skirts might have pleats. So please don’t take these too literally! Find what works for YOU!

For more info:

  1. How to Dress To Flatter Any Figure. This article mentions 12 different types, but many of them sound like slight variations on the basic types I’ve mentioned. This article gives examples for each and some suggestions for flattering clothing.
  2. Figure Flatterer on iVillage. This interactive tool is packed with suggestions for what to wear and what to avoid when it comes to jeans, pants, skirts, dresses, jackets, tops, and even accessories. However, it is from the perspective that some features are “bad,” and if you have a certain shape, you can never ever wear certain things, which I don’t buy. With that said, it does have a lot of helpful information.
  3. Stylebakery. This site has some really helpful articles and images, and they’re very down to earth and affordable.
  4. Wendi Braswell. I stumbled across her videos on ehow, and I’ll probably share some more from her. You can find great videos from her on youtube too. Here’s a video about finding jeans to flatter your figure with some really great tips. 
  5. Shabby Apple’s Figure Flatterer. After doing the quiz, you can shop by your figure type.

What do you like about your shape? Have you always liked it?

Think about your favorite outfits. What is it about them that makes them look great on you?

P.S. Have you entered the giveaway yet?! Are you having fun with the homework for this week? Have you take your body shape into consideration with the collage you’re making?

P.P.S. To post your collage on Scribble’s facebook page, all you have to do is share the link. Or, you could post it to your page and tag @scribblesfromemily. Let me know if you need help 🙂

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Dresses from Shabby Apple

How to Find Your Style Personality

Welcome to Fashion 101! This week one of you lucky ladies will win a lovely accessory, courtesy of Handmade and Lovely. More about that at the end of today’s lesson!

I don’t usually think about my clothes as having personality. I just buy what I feel like in the moment,  or what I like or need, or deals too good to pass up. Maybe you’re like me. If you are, you don’t often consider that your clothes are talking about you, much louder than you words are, to everyone within  earshot eyesight!

Your clothes are an expression of yourself. They should express your personality, your tastes, and even your priorities. You can tell a lot about someone based on what they wear, and I don’t mean just what their favorite color is or what they ate for lunch.

There’s even some “science” backing up why people gravitate towards certain clothes. Studies show that certain personality and character traits tend to like similar colors, patterns, textures, and styles.

There are roughly six different clothing personality types. Sometimes they’re called other names, and sometimes there are only five listed, but I think this covers the bases best. They are Classic, Dramatic, Romantic, Ingénue, Natural, and Gamine.

Note: you might not fit perfectly in one category. In fact, you probably won’t. You are a unique and multi-faceted being! Read through the following descriptions and notice the images. What fits you best?

Read More

What This Fashion Series Is NOT About

Before we begin our fashion series next week, I thought this post was needed. When you flip through a fashion magazine, click through an online article, or even look through advertisements or catalogs, do you recognize the messages the writers and images send? They’re saying things like, “You NEED this! You HAVE TO buy this! It’s IN!” or “You need this to tuck in that less than perfect tummy, or hide those thick calves, or broad shoulders. You are flawed. You are not ideal. If you buy our product, we will fix you.

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Fashion advice abounds on how to “fix” or disguise your flaws. Articles abound on all the things you “have to” have this season. If you enjoy those, good for you. Personally, I don’t like people telling me that my body is flawed just because it doesn’t match up with their ideal, when it’s how God chose to make me. While there’s nothing wrong with following the trends, I know that a lot of it is all about getting more money from consumers.

So, in this series, there’s a few things I’m NOT going to talk about. This series is…

1. Not Skin Deep
While we will talk about things like makeup trends, styles, shopping, and dressing well, I’m not going to focus as much on your outward appearance as I am your thoughts, preferences, attitudes, desires, and uniqueness. Rather than focusing just on what’s hot now, I want you to learn more about yourself and develop your personal style. I’ll give you the basic building blocks, then you can use them to evaluate the trends and see if they’re right for you.

2. Not About What You Are Not
This is a big one. In my research for this series, over and over again I’ve read about covering your flaws, doing the best you can with what you’ve got, hiding those features of yourself that are “less than ideal.” When I read that, this verse came to mind:

“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; 
   your works are wonderful, 
   I know that full well.” Psalms 139:14

If you have broad shoulders, or thick ankles, or chubby fingers, or frizzy hair, it’s not by accident. It’s not a “flaw,” an “oops” on God’s part. It’s not less than His ideal. 

We aren’t going to talk about hiding things that are “wrong” with you. Yes, we all probably have aspects of our appearance we don’t like. But I don’t wan’t to dwell there. Instead, we’re going to focus on how wonderfully made and unique you are. 

3. Not About Perfection
This point is similar to the one above. In our series, we will try to stay away from the idea that there is an “ideal” that everyone needs to look like. If you study fashion history, that ideal has changed from curvy and voluptuous  in the Middle Ages and Renaissance, to long flat torsos in the Elizabethan age, to “Grecian” high waisted and busty shaped in the Edwardian period, to tiny waists in the Victorian, to boxy and masculine in the 20’s.

If culture dictates your ideal, you’ll never be happy. 


And, if you really look at what celebrities wear, some people say “They bombed it,” while others applaud their unique style. A lot of fashion is just opinion. They break the “rules” all the time. All. The. Time. So when we talk about flattering your figure and finding your style personality, take it with a grain of salt.


Here’s proof:

Star Street Style
This is Isabel Lucas. I think her dress looks like something even I wouldn’t consider when browsing the Goodwill racks. But this is what the article says: “We’ve always envied Isabel Lucas’ casual-chic style. Here, she does it again, by wearing this pink floral number with comfortable flats.” After reading that, I think, well, it is actually cute on her…You can break all the fashion rules and still look great, if you have confidence.

I want you to define your style, and find what works for you in this series. I hope you come away from each post, not feeling defeated, but inspired.

During the first week, we’ll focus on developing your style. The second week, we’ll talk about shopping savvy. The third week, we’ll talk about some specifics, like makeup and accessorizing. Each week will have a “homework” assignment to help you apply some things. And, there will be prizes! Each Monday there will be a new giveaway that will last until Friday.

Just because I love you guys, here’s a sneak peak at Monday’s giveaway:

Do you like that little Fashion 101 button I made? Here’s the code if you want to put it in your sidebar! It counts as an extra entry to the giveaways!

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(a href=”http://scribblesfromemily.blogspot.com/search/label/Fashion%20101” target=”_blank”)(img src=”http://i947.photobucket.com/albums/ad317/Emjoyc/Fashion101Buttonwithkiss.jpg” border=”0″ alt=”Photobucket”)(/a)

Directions: Copy and Paste the code you see above, then go through and change EVERY Parentheses to a > or < sign. Let me know if it still doesn’t work.

If you’re not already, you may want to like Scribbles From Emily’s facebook page. That’s where the homework results for each week will be posted, plus I’ll continue taking polls there. There’s a poll going on right now, so stop by and share your opinion!
Are you looking forward to next week? I am! I think you’ll really enjoy it! 
So to start off, what’s the best fashion advice you’ve ever received?

Why Friends Are Good For You

An article called “Friends for Life” in the April issue of Better Homes and Gardens Magazine claims that friends are good for your health, but in recent years, people have become more and more isolated. The article starts with Jessica’s story. When she turned 30, she realized that although she’d lived and worked in a city for several years, she had no one to celebrate with. “I felt frustrated and very alone,” she said.

This resonated with me, because this summer I’ll celebrate my 21st birthday. I’ve been thinking about it for several months already, trying to come up with something to make it special. I’ve never had a big group of friends, but when we moved from Iowa to Arizona, we went from hanging out with friends from our college group every Sunday night, once during the week for Bible Study, plus weekends, to seeing people at church once a week. In Iowa we had roommates and classmates to get together for coffee or grab lunch with, not to mention mentors. Going to school everyday, I was surrounded by people most of the time. To go from that to online classes and church once a week was a huge adjustment.

My Bible study and roommates during my summer missions trip

Thankfully, our church has a Sunday school class for 20-30 year olds, and from that and church retreats, we made some friends. But, everyone we’ve become friends with has moved away! It’s happened twice already, and we found out recently that the third couple we’ve been hanging out with are moving this summer. I can definitely understand the frustration of being alone. 

The BHG article says that loneliness is becoming more common: researchers found that between 1985 and 2004, people’s close confidants have shrunk from three to two on average, and they are more likely to be family members than friends. “Fully 25 percent of survey respondents in 2004 admitted they had no close relationships- inside their families or out,” the article states.

Isolation isn’t good for our health. According to the doctors quoted, being in the company of friends and loved ones reduces the stress hormone cortisol which is “a prime culprit” in fibromayalgia, type 2 diabetes, and inflammation, as well as shrinking the brain’s memory and abstract reasoning centers (it can also make you store fat). Being with friends is good for your brain too; it increases feel-good chemicals like dopamine and oxytocin and stops stress’s effects on shrinking the brain, it lowers blood pressure, helps you sleep better, and strengthens your immune system.  People with friends are more likely to exercise and take care of themselves too.

While some of these benefits are dependent on being physically present with a friend, many of them are still the result of long-distance friendships. “It’s more important that someone out there understands you,” the article claims. However, they say that online interactions have a much smaller affect, possibly because we don’t actually hear our friend’s voice. A doctor is quoted saying “From a health standpoint, reading an email or text message is not nearly as powerful as spending time with that person and interacting face to face. Technology is great for keeping in touch, but it can’t replace the real thing.”

 Bummer. Email, texting, and facebooking are my communications of choice. I don’t like calling people, because you never know if they’re busy or not, and what if you run out of things to say? It’s probably an irrational fear that I need to get over.

The article ended with talking about how Jessica formed a group of close friends by inviting her facebook friends to get-togethers, and now feels happier than she has in a long time.

I could relate to the article, because I had trouble coming up with two confidants outside of family. Brian usually understands me, but there’s some things guys just don’t get. I consider my readers friends, because we share our thoughts, struggles, and daily lives with each other, even if it is in a sort of impersonal way.

I know that if I want to have friends, I need to take the first step sometimes. Since reading the article, I’ve set goals for myself each week for getting in touch with at least one friend, even if it is only online. 

 Do you have long-distance friendships? People who hold you accountable to reach your goals? Friends you know you can call on if you ever needed anything? Are friendships important to you? How involved are you at maintaining your friendships?