Trust us: Shop the Athleta Sale NOW!

January is one of my favorite times of year to shop online – the sales are BANANAS! Especially at places where GREAT things usually don’t go on sale.  As you will likely find me in some type of athleisure most days of the week, my favorite place to shop online in January is ATHLETA.  

I’ve come to love Athleta more than Lulu (yep, i said that); there seem to be more options, and the prices are a touch lower.  I also love that i can use my Gap card points there….bonus!

Here are some of my favorites…..and some of the things that I bought!  Click here to shop their sale ASAP!

2017 Highs…..and Lows

Well, that’s a wrap on 2017.  We could tell you that this year has been full of joy and triumphs – which is 100% true – but we’d be lying if we didn’t also tell you it had it’s many lows just as big – life hasn’t always been as perfect as our edited photos.  Needless to say, 2017 was quite the year!

This year has been a difficult one for many, and at times it felt as if the world was ending.  Natural disasters, terrorism, hatred, politics and the sexual harassment scandals…..tearing so many apart and yet bringing so many together.  The way people all around the world unified after so many of these happenings was a beautiful thing to witness and at times, be a part of.

A high we are proud of?  Our Style Spies business is better than ever.  We celebrated 8 years of being in business, and are blessed to be able to put our passion for fashion into a business that helps people feel good about themselves on a daily basis. We can’t wait to see what 2018 brings for this business that is now as old as our two youngest daughters!

An unexpected low that turned into an unexpected high?  We experienced true heartbreak as our other business venture made some changes that ultimately led us to go in a new and different direction.  With this difficult decision, we faced betrayal, the sadness of letting go, and the brutal realities of professional and personal friendships.  It was a place we never thought we would be……

That said – the silver lining to that change brought us more than we could ever have imagined.  By taking this huge leap of faith, we were embraced by a company with open arms, new friendships, and the chance to build something to support our families in the long run.  As Mothers, knowing our children are watching and listening intently, it was important for us to show them how strong and brave they need to be, and CAN be in the face of adversity!

 

Finally, both of us are now in our 40’s!  It’s crazy to even type that as we have been friends since ages 21 and 22, when we were roommates in Chicago, finding our way.  40 has brought surprises, laughter, memories, and celebration, and we can happily say that there is a peace that comes with this age.  Accepting who you are and embracing it, and wanting to be surrounded by people who genuinely care about you vice versa…..its the ONLY way to go.  And we can’t forget the fact that fashion in your 40’s is FABULOUS……it’s all about celebrating the best parts of yourself and truly dressing for YOU – no one else.

 

  

Long story short (and trust us, we could go on…..), what have we learned in 2017?  It’s this:  life is short.  Life throws a lot of curveballs. Life isn’t always the way it seems in our edited, perfect pictures.  It’s up to US to figure out how to handle them.  Do you duck and cover?  Do you face the curveballs head on?  This year we’ve each chosen to face them head on.  That’s what taking care of your family is about.  No hiding, no dancing around the solution.  Through sickness, job changes and even natural disasters, taking care of ourselves and our families is what it’s all about!

For us – Supporting your framily (friends who are family, get it? )….. is everything.  Be good to one another this year! Cheers to a prosperous and healthy 2018!

 

 

 

Shop my look: Splurge Vs Steal

Recently, I was lucky enough to be featured in our fabulous local publication, Fairfield Magazine.  It was such an honor, and so much fun to work on this photo shoot!  I was able to style the other two talented ladies who were in the article with me, as well as myself in holiday party attire.  There are so many iterations of ‘holiday party attire’ so we were all varying forms of ‘dressed up.’

My look might have been the most casual, but It was truly ‘me.’  In light of our Target giveaway this week, I thought I’d show you some splurge vs. steal options to shop my look!

 

First up, my Cape Blazer.  I have had this for TWO years believe it or not, but you can still find this style.  It’s timeless!

Splurge at Macy’s:  Vince Camuto, $139

 

Steal at Target, $54.99

 

Second, the denim.  Destructed denim is my FAVORITE…….dressed up or down, always a conversation starter!

 

Splurge at J. Crew, $125

 

Steal at Target, $29.99

 

Third, the oxford shirt. A wardrobe staple in oxford blue, white, or a simple blue and white stripe.

Splurge at J. Crew, $69.50

 

Steal at Target, $22.99

 

Fourth item – the printed sweater. It can be ANY printed sweater – doesn’t have to be an animal print. Mine is from J.Crew and is sold out, but here is something similar.

Splurge at J.Crew, $89.50

 

Steal at Target, $12

 

Finally – my hat! Ya’ll might know…I’m a hat girl. So when I saw this in the window at South Moon Under…..it was love at first sight.

Splurge at South Moon Under, $44

 

Steal at Target, $19.99

 

Hope you can successfully recreate this look if you love it!  My amazing jewelry is by Allison Daniel Designs, and this photo cred goes to Adam Lerner Photography.

Target for Women – Giveaway Week

Tis the season for shopping and spending money!

We’re here to help you this week with one of everyone’s favorite – Target or Targé in my house.  If you haven’t seen our giveaway with some of our blogger babes, don’t miss your opportunity to win!  Together, these #Girlbosses are going to select one lucky winner of $1000 gift card just in time for holiday shopping. Can I get a ‘woot woot’!

The women’s selection at Target is AH-mazing … I could grab a coffee, put my headphones in and spend hours cruising the women’s department.

From workout clothing to date night, they have you covered. And if you ask me, their pieces are almost identical to a lot of high priced items out there – I am just sayin’.

So, what are our favorites. It was hard to choose but these are the ones that stood out.

              

Don’t miss a single one – the velvet jeans are yummy and that leopard jacket had me at hello!

Get ready to spend your $1000 at Target and Good Luck!

Leopard Sweater, Velvet Pajamas, Velvet Jeans, Workout Tank, Booties, Balloon Sleeve Sweatshirt, Fur Stole, Leopard Jacket, Fur Jacket, Tie Tennies,Pleated Skirt, Wrap Dress, White Tennis Shoes, Lace Dress, Workout Pants, Love Sweatshirt, Earrings, Skinny Jeans

 

$1000 Target Giveaway……..Say What?

 

Hi everyone! Today we’re teaming up with some amazing bloggers and #Girlbosses to bring you an amazing holiday giveaway! One lucky follower will be able to win a $1000 Target gift card and have some holiday cash to spend! If you’d like to enter, just use the Rafflecopter widget below (PS: you get 10 bonus entries for completing all the tasks!).

What will you buy with your gift card if you win? Comment below?

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Here are some of our favorite things from the new Hearth and Hand with Magnolia collection from our favorite Texans, Chip and Joanna Gaines…..how amazing would it be to do over your home with all this – and you totally could, with $1000!

The Perfect Slip Cover

Am I alone on the hunt for the perfect couch slip cover?

Finding the perfect slipcover can be quite the feat! Trust me, it has been almost a year!

We have a couch that we have had for years now and it has taken it’s fair beating having two small kids and a dog! I have always had extra ‘back up’ covers and have used a few – but I wanted a change from our off-white covers.

I searched high and low for the perfect color, the perfect fabric and I am happy to report, I have found the answer. I ordered a few different sample colors and fabrics and decided this would be the perfect addition to our living room colors and cozy for the winter months. How was the process? Painless. I chose the velvet ‘rouge ash’ and absolutely love our choice.

The simple process of taking measurements (explained in detail on their site), choosing your color/fabric selection and soon after a beautiful cover appears on your porch.

How gorgeous did our new velvet silver couch turn out?

Not only did I fall in love with everything about it, my family jumped on a snuggled right in! I couldn’t be happier! Granted I did have to make a few changes to the rest of the living room – my reclaimed wood coffee table didn’t quite ‘fit’ with the new look … but I can’t complain with the choice I found to replace it!

And for those I saw at Homegoods and other stores multiple times, finding the perfect pillows was also part of the fun. Now you finally get to see the final look.

 

 

Are you looking for an update to your living room or couch? I hight recommend going this route – much cheaper than buying a whole new couch and gives you the opportunity to have some fun!

 

My next cover by Comfort Works?  Velvet navy blue!

 

Slip Covers (c/o Comfort Works), Rug (similar and under $300!), Coffee table (c/o Lamps Plus),  books, shoes

 

 

 

 

 

How to Style Your Family Photo Shoot

It’s that time of year.  Some of you already have this under your belt (well done, my friends!).  But if you’re like me…..now is about the time you’re thinking – I need to get some quick pictures taken of my family for holiday cards!  Stat!

That said – you don’t want to spend a lot of money – either on the clothes, or a photographer.  But, you want some great pictures to remember everyone as they are in that moment in time, in life.

So, my top tips for holiday photo season:

  1.  Coordinate, don’t match.  Look for pieces that complement each other, don’t go all 90’s on us and match (the days of the khaki pant and white shirt/dress thing are OVER).
  2. Shop your closet, first!  What is one of your favorite things to wear?  Start there…..and coordinate other people’s clothes in your household around that.  What you’re missing, you can surely find at great places like the Gap, Old Navy – even Marshall’s or TJ’s!
  3. Let the kids be kids.  If your daughter wants to wear something with sequins, let her.  Just say – ok you chose that, so Mommy is going to coordinate the rest of the outfit!  😉  Let your son wear a Star Wars sweater – see my son’s below.  You’ll love looking back at those pictures and remembering what their favorite things were.  And you’ll get better smiles!
  4. Go for non-posed, in the moment shots.  Again – the posed, all white with khaki look is so 90210 from the first go-around.
  5. Don’t want to shell out for a photographer? Have a friend use their iPhone 7!  Or ask a friend who owns a nicer camera  to take a few pics for you!  You can return the favor for her, or take her out to lunch as a thank you.  These photos below are mine from last year – I had a friend who is (more than) handy with her camera take them. I was THRILLED with how they turned out, they are some of my favorite pictures to date.
This is my family, last year.  Love this moment!

 

Those little people smiles are everything to me.

 

She’s got personality! Ha!

 

This was on the back of our holiday card. An absolute favorite.

 

If you want to see a fully coodinated family outfit – all from the Gap at 50% off, using their current promo code – check out my Family Photo Pinterest Board right here:  https://www.pinterest.com/mcmilano77/family-photo-shoot/

And if you just want to shop a few of my favorites…..I’ve made it easy and broken it down by family member:

For the woman:

For the man:

For the girl:

For the boy:

Happy picture taking!

It’s Finally Fall!

We are JUST getting Fall weather here in the Northeast – and it’s mid-October!  I’m worried we are going to skip straight from Summer to Winter – when will I get to wear all of my cute vests and tall boots with dresses?  And leather jackets?  Argh!  I’m going to live it up RIGHT NOW because I know mid-November…..it’s all over.

I couldn’t wait to break out this dress from the #nsale this past summer.  It’s going to do double duty…..now, as you see it without tights and with just over the knee boots, and then in the Winter with skinny jeans underneath and booties – and maybe a cute vest or leather jacket.  It’s SO affordable, too….win-win!

I have to mention this gorgeous necklace…..doesn’t it pair perfectly with this dress?  Shop the brand here.

shop discount beach wedding dresses UK at instyledress.co.uk

 

Shop the look right here:

 

Photo Credits to Luanne Kelly Photography, shot at the beautiful Penfield Beach Pavilion in Fairfield, CT.

Style Spies FB Live Summer Finds!

Wow!  What an amazing audience we had last night for our first ever Style Spies Fab Summer Finds on FB Live!!!!  We were THRILLED to have everyone there who joined, it was such a fun night of favorites, trivia, and giveaways!

Make sure to keep in touch with us – the Back to School edition will be our next LIVE…….everyone loves a little Fall shopping, right?

We wanted to make sure those of you who didn’t get to join us got to see some of our favorites, so without further ado….

Round Two – Dressing Room Files

The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is finally open to the public, yay!!  We hope you’re all shopping till your heart’s content.

 Last week Erin showed you some great pieces for the Southern temps – but for us who reside in the more Northern parts of the country, those pieces are ‘buy now, wear now.’

Today, a few things that you might put aside in your closet for a couple more months, but things you will wear on a constant rotation and that will totally be worth the splurge this summer!

 (and it’s not really a splurge if it’s on sale, right?)

This is my ‘I stole it from my husband’ look. Jeans by 7 for all Mankind, flannel by Paige.

 

in LOVE with this Trouve draped leather jacket – also comes in a caramel color and grey.

 

These jeans worked with everything! I wasn’t so sure about this Trouve top – but once it was on, it was DEFINITELY coming home with me. It’s all one piece and only $58.90.

 

Ok, can we talk about this Halogen dress? Obsessed! Great for now, with cute pumps or booties, and great later, with jeans as shown, again with pumps or booties.  And it’s $65.90!

 

This Gym and Tonic tee – aaaaahhhhhmazing. Paired with these shredded Zella leggings and this super cute rose gold BP hat, this look is so ME to run around town doing errands.

 

I’ve already worn this Adidas tank twice – I might ‘need’ another. Ha!

Shop all of my favorites right here:

 

 

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