this is what procrastination looks like

tank, Target $10; skirt, Talbots $20, belt, TJ Maxx $5, heels, Bakers via gift from my BFF
This outfit is actually from Saturday... oh, I'd say around 5 pm. You see, when I took this photo I had just gotten showered and dressed for the first time all day. My husband was in Kansas City spending some time with his buddies from college and letting me work on some class assignments for the week. Well, up until this photo I "worked" on cleaning the house, organizing the basement, taking the dogs for a run, talking on the phone to my Mother and Grandfather for an hour and basically doing everything possible to avoid working on my assignment.  So around 5 pm I decided enough was enough, but before I could face the task I needed some encouragement.  So, I slipped on my favorite skirt of the moment, belted a flowing long tank over it and threw on my new sassy heels! Who says we need a reason to dress up? I don't... :)


Just in case you missed it...

I am the feature article on Wikifashion today!  In the event you are unfamiliar with the site, it's a wiki - think Wikipedia - for all things fashion related.  You can search for blogs (like me!), look up information about your favorite fashion magazines, and peruse different styles and brands. Basically it's your one stop shop for all information regarding anything having to do with fashion. A huge thanks to the team for putting me on the front page! 

On another exciting note, I am thrilled to be able to introduce you to my first lovely sponsor - The Woodward Inns!  As you know, the hubby and I love to travel and we are constantly looking for unique places to stay. So, I couldn't be happier to have Elizabeth and her beautiful houses join The Flip Side of Oz! Look out for some awesome photos and reviews soon! 

Happy Monday, everyone!


Where did you come from?!

There is nothing I enjoy more than getting up in the morning and putting on an article of clothing that I haven't worn in a while. It's kind of like unexpectedly finding a $10 bill in a handbag that you haven't carried lately or a coat pocket at the beginning of winter. Yesterday morning was no exception. I found this dress tucked back in a far nether region of my closet and almost squealed with joy! 

It truly is all about the simple things in life. So, please tell me, dear readers - what simple pleasures do you enjoy most in life? 


a tale of two shoes

cardigan, Old Navy $15; dress, Gianni Bini via Dillards $40, heels, Bakers $40
Of course it goes without saying that I am slightly obsessed with shoes. I don't discriminate; I obsess over all of my shoes equally. However, these caged heels hold a particularly special place in my heart (and not just because they're freakin' hott!). No, this pair is extra special because my BFF bought them for me over the weekend. Now, allow me to explain a bit more... 

Almost a year and a half ago my best friend, Joe, made a very important decision that would drastically change his life - he underwent lap band surgery. We both knew this would mean big changes in the months ahead; however, at the time I don't think that either of us could have imagined exactly how big. Now, 1 year and 4 months later he is a svelte 190 pounds lighter and much healthier (you must go read about his journey)!

So, I bet you're wondering right about now where these heels enter into this story. Well, he and I love to shop (duh!). So, somewhere along his amazing journey we decided that as a reward, every time he met a 30 pound weight loss goal we would go shoe shopping and he would buy a new pair for himself. The months passed and he quickly lost 30 pounds, then 90 pounds, then 120 pounds. And, as he approached losing a whopping 180 pounds, he looked at me one day over lunch and said that when he reached his next goal he did not want to buy shoes for himself... he wanted to buy shoes for me

Joe, my darling, you are amazing and it has been my privilege to be by your side throughout your wonderful transformation! I loved the old you and I love the new and improved you just as much. It is my honor to be able to call you my BFF. xo, Gracie


What to Wear: Leggings

I love getting questions from readers (please don’t hesitate to ask!), so I was particularly excited to receive this one from NIkki last Friday. 

To answer the question: yes, I love leggings! And, I agree, leggings are super cute on pregnant women (congrats, by the way!). So, to offer some helpful suggestions on what to wear with leggings I’ve put together an outfit that, given a few modifications, should work for just about anyone. 

The first thing to bear in mind is that leggings are similar to tights in that they generally should not be worn like a pair of pants. Anytime you’re reaching for leggings, reach for either a long top, like a tunic, or a short dress. I've leaned toward shirt dresses with my leggings lately; however, any choice that covers the bum should work. This is where I think pregnant women look so cute in leggings because there seems to be a plethora of options that are both flattering for your baby bump (think empire waist-style) and long enough to wear with leggings. Find two super cute options here and here!.  Plus, leggings should be uber comfortable as your bump grows! 

The second great thing about leggings is that they look great with just about any shoe choice. So, really it just becomes a matter of your style preference when you’re getting dressed that day. I was feeling like having some extra height on this particular day, so I went for wedge sandals. However, I’ve also worn red flats and knee high brown boots with a different variation of the same outfit. This means that as you get further into your pregnancy you can switch out heels for flats, or for my non pregnant readers, layer on boots as the weather turns cooler this fall and winter!


Celebrity Style: Rachel Zoe

Actress Rachel Zoe at Cross Creek on July 10, 2010 in Malibu, CA (Photo by iamacamera / Meet The Famous) Photo via Newscom

Happy Monday, dear readers! I have several posts planned for the week, one of which was supposed to go up this morning (check back tomorrow for leggings styling tips!).  However, after a series of technical difficulties resulting in my wireless completely going out last night, I was forced to postpone said posts until later in the week. So, for today I thought I'd highlight some celebrity style I'm seriously loving right now - Rachel Zoe.  The petite stylist has a penchant for paring long, voluminous skirts with some fabulously tall heels. Just what I've been craving lately! What I love the most is that she carries this style perfectly during both day and night.


skirt dress

Right now, I am particularly enamored with long, flowing maxi dresses... however, not like this one (which I do still love). Instead, I find myself dreaming of a more voluminous maxi dress. While one of these dresses is atop my shopping radar, (I'm taking a long over due vintaging field trip this weekend) Wednesday morning I did not have said dress in my closet so I had to make do. The "dress" I am wearing is actually this skirt! I used a piece of black ribbon to cinch the waist and layered my cropped Alexander McQueen blazer on top for work. While this make shift dress may not be exactly like the floor gazing style I currently pine for, it did allow me to show off my Christian Siriano caged sandals. Not too shabby :)


What to Wear: Back to School

It's that wonderful time of year again! School buses are reappearing on the streets, dorm rooms are reopening their doors to co-eds, and pupils everywhere are agonizing over one question: what to wear on the first day of school. It's a question that undoubtedly never loses importance in the minds of students, but can sometimes cause even the sanest of Moms to lose their minds a little (or maybe that was just my mom during my Jr. High days!). Either way, to help relieve some tension for everyone involved, I have put together a little lookbook of some great outfit choices for going back to school. And, forgive me for putting a shameless plug in for my alma mater :)

  1. Long Sleeve Tri Marl Tee, Topshop, $32
  2. North Carolina Tarheels Womens NCAA Tee, Finishline, $25
  3. Miso Long Sleeve Draped T-Shirt, Republic, $14.70
  4. Once in a Blue Skirt, ModCloth, $57.99
  5. Button Mini Skirt, Topshop, $60
  6. Cricket Match Skirt, ModCloth, $41.99
  7. Annton by Steve Madden, Piperlime, $129
  8. New Barrett Sneaker, Coach, $88
  9. Restricted "Scrabble" Oxfords in tan, Ruche, $38.99
  10. Clear Lens Geeky Reading Glasses, ASOS, $16.85
  11. Flat Top Plastic Sunglasses, Topshop, $30
  12. Ray-Ban Wayfarer Sunglasses in Black, Blue and Cream, $140 
  13. Lupe by Pink Studio, Piperlime, $60.99
  14. Buckle Leather Strap Satchel, Topshop, $170
  15. 78178 by Street Level, Piperlime, $75


influenced from afar

Despite the fact that we're just now coming up on 1 year of marriage (sigh), the hubby and I are already thinking about our 2nd anniversary... because to celebrate we're going backpacking through Europe for 3 weeks! We both love to travel (if you haven't noticed), and with a booked solid year ahead of us - final year of my Masters (holla!) - we've decided that next October will be the perfect time to run away together for a while :)  With that being said, this outfit kind of makes me think of our upcoming adventure. I believe lace has gone slightly unappreciated in the US up until recently, while the French and Spanish have always managed to incorporate it quite nicely into their cultures. So, I was quite pleased to find this lace top hanging from a sale rack at Kohl's about 6 months ago. At only $12 - magnifique


The Remix: One-Shoulder Dress

Remember my one shoulder dress conundrum? Well, between your excellent advice, dear readers, and my love of belts and cardigans, I've come up with at least one (trust me, there will be more...) work appropriate solution! At first I was slightly skeptical, for I feared the dress looking awkward under the cardigan.  Fortunately, three elements worked together in my favor: 1) this dress hits fairly high across the collar bone, 2) the ruffle detail adds an interesting element under the cardigan and 3) I have fairly long hair!  Since the weather is still warm, I chose nude pumps to go with this outfit; however, come fall and winter I'll be wearing this ensemble with black patterned tights and peep-toe booties!


Currently Browsing: Greener Grasses aka: Fall wear

I guess what they say about the grass always being greener on the other side is true.  Despite the fact that our summer weather is nowhere near over, something about it being August and the school buses reappearing around our neighborhood makes me dream of wearing fall clothing again. I wake up thinking of cargo leggings, layers of capes and sweaters, paired with over-the-knee boots.  So this morning, I thought I'd share a few of my dreams with you! 

Happy Monday!  

  1. Hooded Cotton Poncho, Alice + Olivia, $240 - a little bit more to spend but if you've got it, it will be way versatile and way worth it!
  2. Fluttering Lashes Poncho, Anthropologie, $58 - I might be buying this online later today!
  3. Levi's 535 Faded Skinny Denim Leggings, Kohl's, $40 - I live in my pair all winter :)
  4. Urban Behavior Stretch Cargo Skinny, Metropark, $69
  5. The Skinny Low Rise Studded Jeans, Current Elliot via Net-a-porter, $93 - this particular style is currently out of stock, but there are other wonderful options
  6. Enzo Angiolini 'Zakari' Over the Knee Boot, Nordstroms, $119.90
  7. Dalley, Aldo, $80
  8. Chinese Laundry 'Trust Me' Over the Knee Boot, Nordstroms, $99.95 - another possible online purchase this afternoon!


Weekend Must Have: Fun!

More than 71 thousand walkers and runners take to the streets of St. Louis as the 12th Annual Susan G. Koman Race for the Cure, moves west on Olive Street in downtown St. Louis on June 12, 2010. The race has raised more than $3.3 million for breast cancer research and charities.  UPI/BIll Greenblatt Photo via Newscom

omg!  With the craziness of the past week I forgot to share what I did last weekend... I participated in my first ever 5K race! I ran in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure in Kansas City last Sunday morning and it was amazing! Over 28,000 people showed up and raised over $1 million dollars for this amazing organization! It was such a rush to be apart of such a great cause! I'm happy to report that after several weeks of training I successfully finished the race (without walking!) in just 30 minutes! 

So, tell me... what are you up to this weekend, dear readers? Whatever it is, make it fun!

Attendees accessorize wearing pink at the 2010 Kentucky Oaks as part of a pink out to show support for the Susan G. Komen for the Cure charity for breast cancer research at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky on April 30, 2010. UPI /Mark Cowan Photo via Newscom

Breast cancer survivors wave as they march into the main stage area during the Susan G., Komen Race for the Cure in St. Louis on June 12, 2010. The race has raised more than $3.3 million for breast cancer research and charities. UPI/BIll Greenblatt Photo via Newscom


rompin' around

It has taken me a couple of seasons to get warmed up to the idea of a romper.  My husband likes to refer to these as onesies and my BFF's opinion is that only toddlers wear them. Regardless, however, of the way the men in my life feel, this is one item that has been high on my "Must Buy" list this summer. You can probably then imagine my esteem joy when I picked this one up at TJ Maxx for only $12

Last weekend we went to my in-laws house for a cookout, and it took me only 30 seconds to get dressed as I knew exactly what I wanted to wear. Before we left, I snapped these photos in our backyard and I was fortunate enough to have two guests join me!  In the bottom photo you'll see the tops of two heads that haven't made an appearance recently. 


forget the rules: part II

Last week I posted this, which spurred me to really think about the concept of fashion rules. I believe that these "rules" can unnecessarily cause women to over think getting dressed, which all too often results in playing it safe. So, in an attempt to help free us all from the "rules" of our daily game, I wrote this post for Blogher over the weekend. Enjoy!
1954:  British leading lady and former child star Janette Scott inspects her wardrobe and luggage, prior to her departure for the 1954 Film Festival at Cannes. Original Publication: Picture Post - 7275 - Janet E Scott - unpub.  (Photo by Carl Sutton/Picture Post/Getty Images)

I had an interesting conversation with some co-workers last week regarding fashion “rules.”  We’ve all heard them.  One well known rule that comes to mind states not to wear white after Labor Day.  I believe that these rules can unnecessarily make us all a little nervous about getting dressed.  As a result we end up spending too much time and money trying to look great when we already have in our own closets exactly what we need to look fabulous!  This isn’t to say that we should never buy new; I just think that we could all be surprised by what we already have if we’d just ignore the rules.  So, in effort to help women everywhere break free, keep reading while I de-bunk 5 well-known "rules."
  1. Never wear black and brown together.  One commenter on my blog replied, “I always wonder about that black with brown rule... I mean, how fabulous is leopard print?Regardless of whether or not you enjoy wearing the animal print, this is a valid argument.  The reason it works: black and brown are both neutrals and neutrals pair well with any color – including other neutrals.  So, the next time you need a pair of leggings to wear with your brown boots, grab black ones and laugh at this fashion rule!
  2. Never wear white after Labor Day.  Hello, what color is snow? In my opinion, it seems slightly ridiculous to relegate our white pieces strictly to the days prior to Labor Day when the environment generally turns white during the days afterward.  With that being said, I will also say that there is a difference between summer and winter whites that should be acknowledged.  Winter whites tend to come in fabrics that are thick, like wool, or dressier fabrics, like silk.  White handbags are also a great winter white option because they serve as a neutral (there is rule #1 again!).  Whites to avoid during the winter, of course, are pieces like white linen pants.  However, not all whites should be banished after Labor Day.
  3. Always match your handbag to your shoes.  It is my belief that this rule should almost always be broken.  Why?  Because, accessories are the part of your outfit that makes it unique and fun!  For example, you wouldn’t necessarily buy or wear red pants, but the pop of color you get from a red shoe can be amazing with the right outfit!  Now, try matching that red shoe with a red bag and you could be headed toward full on fashion disaster.  Instead, grab a shoe that looks great with an outfit – like a red pair of heels with a navy dress – and then grab a bag that compliments the entire outfit, including the shoes – like a tan or ivory bag.  No matching, no headache, no problem.
  4. Never wear a mini/short skirt after 35.  Please!  This fashion rule has less to do with age and more to do with body type.  Every woman knows which part of her body is her best asset and which one she needs to help out a little bit.  I know plenty of ladies under 35 who don’t feel comfortable in short skirts and so they don’t wear them.  On the same token, also I know ladies over 35 who have amazing legs and should (and do) show them off.  I say that if you have the legs to wear it, flaunt them in a mini skirt no matter what your age. 
  5. Dress to impress… yourself.  Okay, this isn’t really a fashion rule, but more of a mantra to conclude.  In the end, you are the one getting up every day and preparing to face the world.  All day long you are the one that has to be happy with how you look.  Take time to figure out what you like and dislike.  Which outfits make you feel beautiful and confident when you walk out the door?  Which ones make you feel uncomfortable?  It is my experience that impressing someone else with how you look will never bring about the same satisfaction as is received from impressing yourself.  If you love your style, then others will be impressed by your confidence!


Shop Your Man's Closet: Menswear Inspired Outfits

The Inspiration:
Marc Jacobs Runway Fall 2010

My Version:
vest, vintage $1; tee, American Eage $3; pants, Old Navy $15; pumps, Steve Madden $90

Menswear inspired outfits have been heavy on the trend radar for several seasons now, and it looks like that is going to carry over into Fall 2010. While most designers have incorporated menswear into their female clothing lines, I tend to gravitate toward the real thing. First of all, because it can probably already be found inside a closet in your own home and second, you can't really beat the quality of your guy's vest or blazer. However, if you are like me and are with a guy whose idea of dressing up means putting on fresh jeans and a clean tee, don't fear. Finding a few great items for this trend is easier and less expensive than you may think. I picked up this vest out of the men's section of my favorite vintage store. It set me back an entire dollar


trend alert: new vintage

This season a lot of love has been given to vintage inspired outfits. But, I'm not talking about smelly, old shirts and dresses found at yard sales and in attics (not that I think there is anything wrong with either of those places!). The pieces I'm talking about are new, but with retro details. This $15 Target dress (seen already here and here) worn with a pair of t-strap sandals, a woven handbag, and flower necklace screamed retro to me. In the morning I also donned a heather gray cardigan to work. However, by the afternoon the heat forced me to shed the extra layers. Just as well... because I'm in love with this necklace!


Weekend Must Have: Lemon Drop Martini!

Last weekend the hubbie had to work both Saturday (and night) as well as Sunday, which meant I had the weekend left to myself to clean, blog, organize and basically do whatever I wanted. So, after a full day Saturday filled with home improvement projects, walks with the dogs, and catching up with the 'rents over the phone, I settled in for some quality DVR time. I don't normally mix drinks at the house as I tend to be more of a wino, but for some reason a martini sounded like a good idea. A few shots of citrus vodka and several cups of lemon juice later and I had one tasty Lemon Drop Martini in my hands! Whether you're enjoying some alone time this weekend or having some girlfriends over, I would highly recommend making this part of your weekend. Enjoy!

Lemon Drop Martini
  • 2-3 cups of lemon juice (I have rather large martini glasses)
  • Sugar or Splenda to taste (I recommend tasting prior to adding vodka to make sure it's the right level of sweet - I used about 1/3 cup) 
  • 2 shots Vodka (plain or citrus flavored)
  • 1 curled slice of lemon peel to garnish
  • Shake with ice and enjoy in a large martini glass!


Coach comes to The Flip Side! Play to win a Coach Bag!

I'm happy to announce that beginning today The Flip Side of Oz is a partnering blog in the Coach Poppy Project! If you notice along the left hand side of the blog, there are various hearts, stars and flowers growing. These are all interactive graphics, so please play around with them. Some of them tweet messages which makes more flowers grow. The more flowers that grow means The Flip Side gets closer to winning a Coach shopping spree*.  In addition, please check back frequently because a Coach bag will appear amidst these flowers.  If you find it, click on it because you've won a Coach bag or accessory! 

Happy Poppy Growing!

*PS - Should The Flip Side win, I am planning on giving away several Coach bags to a few lucky readers. Please check back frequently to make sure we get there! 


Currently Browsing: Caged Heels

Two things I realize about this post: 1) caged heels have been big all summer and 2) I am stretching it slightly to lump #7 into the category of caged heels. Two things you should know in response 1) all of the above shoes are reasonably priced (score!) and 2) I'm in love with #7! 

In all seriousness, right now is the perfect time to pick up a pair (or two) of these if you haven't already. First of all, 5 out of 8 of the above shoes really are on sale and 3 out of 8 are under $100! Second, almost any of the above would make a great transition shoe into the fall because of the boot-like silhouette. 

PS - if you're not familiar, I would highly recommend following either of the Nine West links below to Shoe Woo. I'm in love with this site - it's all about shoes on sale!

  1. Joni, Nine West $39.99 (orig. $89)
  2. Vicki Cage Platform Bootie, Rosegold $117 (orig. $168)
  3. Belle, Sigerson Morrison $127.50 (orig. $255)
  4. Pancho Cutout Peeptoe Sandals, TopShop $180
  5. Val, Nine West Boutique 9 $159 (orig. $199) - sorry, only black is left
  6. Lucky Strike Sandal, Chinese Laundry $71 (orig. $89.95)
  7. Annton, Steve Madden $129
  8. Olivia, Coconuts $65


forget the rules

Last week I found myself in an interesting conversation with several co-workers regarding the "rules" of fashion. You know the ones I'm talking about - i.e. never wear black and brown together or no white allowed after Labor Day. My personal favorite states that a woman should always match her handbag to her shoes. {insert eye roll and gagging cough here} I think sometimes we make getting dressed harder than it actually is because we overthink it! This morning I tried to avoid playing by the "rules" and instead looked through my closet for options that just seemed to pair well together. The end result: a knee length Breton striped bathing suit cover-up tucked into $10 coral skirt I found on clearance at Target. Sometimes I think we could all be surprised by how many options are already hanging in our closet if we'd just forget the rules.

So, what are some of your favorite fashion "rules"? 

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