Shopping at Roe Wolfe

Roe Wolfe is a Minneapolis boutique that’s currently hosting a pop-up shop in a tony mall that is unfortunately close to my new office.

Even though the store isn’t large, it took me ages to browse, because there was a lot of great stuff to explore.

This tee caught my eye on the first pass through the racks:

Umm, yes and yes.

Roe Wolfe also carries many jewelry pieces from local designer Larissa Loden.

This necklace was well-priced ($46) and felt modern enough to take home:

Two other necklaces that I liked but did not buy:

The black chains feel edgy.

The last thing that I bought – unexpectedly – was this DefineMe fragrance in “Payton.”¬†

This scent is described as “a seductively sexy perfume with bold notes of orange blossom, peach, clove buds + musk.” It reminded me of Jo Malone’s Pomegranate Noir, a fragrance I love. This perfume also comes in the most adorable little bottle with a roll-on applicator:

The small size (9 ml) makes this perfect for travel. “Payton” isn’t the only fragrance from DefineMe; there were five others in the store.

I loved exploring Roe Wolfe. I hope it expands from a pop-up to a permanent tenant in the mall, but then again, maybe my pocketbook thinks otherwise. ūüėČ

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dagne Dover Spring 2017 Collection

Dagne¬†Dover is a brand that’s done some savvy social media marketing.

They show up everywhere on blogs I read, sites I visit and in my Inbox.

Their primary schtick is offering smart, versatile work totes, so they basically had me at Hello.

While I haven’t bitten yet, their Spring 2017 collection is showing this gorgeous blue color in all of their designs.

This vertical Charlie Tote is my absolute favorite item in their store:

Screen Shot 2017-03-21 at 8.03.49 PM

Unfortunately, it’s also the most expensive: $495.

The Legend Tote is Dagne Dover’s signature bag, and it also comes in this gorgeous hue:

Screen Shot 2017-03-21 at 8.04.55 PM.png

At $265, it’s about half the cost of the Charlie Tote.

Here’s the item I’ll probably order, the Lola pouch:

Screen Shot 2017-03-21 at 8.06.34 PM

The Lola seems so much better than a typical makeup bag, since it has pockets and elastic straps for holding things like lipsticks. The small size is $75 and seems more than adequate.

While this robin’s egg blue (officially called “Jasmine” by Dagne Dover) will always hold the top spot in my heart, I am also completely loving this gorgeous blush color that’s prominently featured for Spring 2017, too.

And even though the last thing I need is another weekender/gym tote, I just want this one:

Screen Shot 2017-03-21 at 8.10.43 PM

The Landon Carryall in Quartz is stunning. Want.

Dagne Dover really hit it out of the park with their Spring collection. 

 

 

 

 

Micellar Water Review

I finally got around to trying micellar water, only about two years after it became A Thing.

If you’re late to the party like I am, micellar water is a facial cleanser composed of microscopic balls of oil¬†suspended in water. The consistency is watery, not at all like the two-phase eye makeup removers that require shaking to combine before use.

Last summer I was really happy with the skincare routine I was using, which consisted mostly of Bliss products.

I ran out of toner, though, and instead of ordering more (especially since Bliss isn’t running any current promotions), I decided to check out the skincare aisle at Target.

Micellar water caught my eye, especially this one, which was billed as both a cleanser and a toner. It’s Pacifica Cactus Water Micellar Tonic, which retails for $11.99.

My first impression was that I did not enjoy the scent, which is soap-y in an unpleasant way. So far, I’ve used this product¬†three¬†ways: to take a first pass at getting makeup off before using a second cleanser to finish the job; as a better-than-nothing one step process on a night when I was too lazy to do anything else; and as a last step, after cleansing, much like I would have normally done with a straight-up toner.

As I mentioned above, the texture is watery, not at all oily, and while it seems to get some makeup off, it doesn’t leave my skin seeming or feeling clean enough on its own. When I used it as a last step, it did not leave my skin feeling sticky or soapy, which is a plus. I still like the Bliss toner better.

I also purchased this Garnier micellar water in a 3 ounce travel size:

Considering that this was only $3.49, the investment was small. I tossed it into my toiletry kit and used it several times last week when I was staying in a hotel during the workweek.

Everything I said above about the Pacifica micellar water applies to this one, too.¬†The scent gets a grade of D- in my book, and it did a terrible job of trying (and failing) to remove the¬†Bobbi Brown cream shadow stick I was wearing as eyeliner, although to be fair this is billed as a long-wear product and acts accordingly. I also seemed to need a lot of the micellar water with each use. I’m already down a quarter of the bottle and it’s been less than a week.

Final verdict: I’m not impressed with micellar water. It’s an ok product as a middle step, and maybe I should consider it as something quick to swipe across my face before a workout (hey, it’s better than nothing), but it doesn’t seem like the one-and-done miracle worker I was hoping to find.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Home Chef Experience

As I’ve mentioned many times, I hate all domestic chores.¬†

Especially cooking.

When Spouse and I were first married nearly 19 (!) years ago, I frequently made ambitious but only semi-successful dinners, often inviting friends over to eat un-tested recipes cooked in the 1950s kitchen of our 600 square foot apartment.

The most famous fail was when I made salmon for friends and the directions said to wash fish, so I did.

With Dawn detergent.

The dish bubbled in the oven.

My subsequent strategy for dinner parties became this: get guests intoxicated enough to mostly ignore (and forgive) any missteps with the food.

When kids came along, we didn’t make a lot of effort to step up our game. Shame on us.

While I would assemble things for dinner (a salad, frozen veggies, maybe a sandwich), to say that I cooked often would be a stretch.

The creepy pizza delivery guy also became a little too familiar with our regular Friday night order.

With our pending move and the many changes coming with it (especially the fact that I am gone 3-4 nights per week), we decided that family dinners were more important than ever.

Enter Home Chef.

Spouse did the research on many of the home delivery dinner services available (so many!), and we selected Home Chef based on the fact that they can deliver to our town and have gluten free offerings (mandatory for Trixie – 8 – who has severe celiac disease).

Currently, we get two meals per week. Spouse usually ends up cooking one while I am gone and usually we make one as a family on the weekend.

Pros:

  • These meals are definitely better than what we would make on our own. Some I would describe as restaurant quality, like Cajun shrimp and cheesy grits.
  • Speaking of grits: this is something I never would have made on my own. Never. Having grown up in Wisconsin, grits were NOT a¬†staple in our house. While I’ve had them a few times as an adult – both sweet and savory – they aren’t something I particularly like or crave. But with Home Chef, I found out they were pretty easy to make and grits with cheese and butter, oh my. Yum.
  • My kids have¬†been introduced to new flavors. Last weekend we made a Korean inspired meal with pork and an absolutely delicious cabbage slaw. I don’t eat pork, but I went nuts on that slaw. So good.
  • Portions are large. We order meals to feed four people, but even when we eat a lot (see above re: going nuts on the slaw), there are leftovers.

Cons:

  • It takes us absolutely forever to make a meal. When we have plenty of time, like a leisurely Saturday night, this isn’t a big deal, but weeknights are a stretch to get dinner on the table before the kids’ (theoretical) bedtime.
  • It’s a lot more work than we are used to doing. There’s always so much chopping.
  • The kitchen is invariably a huge mess by the time we’re done.
  • The packaging seems extremely wasteful, especially the cold packs and lining materials in the boxes.
  • It’s not cheap. So far we’ve made every meal we’ve received, but there will be a time that we don’t get to one and have to toss the ingredients, and I will be angry at throwing away money when this day comes.
  • I can’t eat a lot of it. I eat seafood but not beef, chicken or pork. The rest of my family does. We did not sign up for vegetarian options, but we could have. Given the gluten restriction and our kids’ tastes (which tend to run meat-y), we opted to keep meat in the mix and nix the gluten rather than go vegetarian. I still like the sides that come with the meals, though, and I usually make something extra for myself (salad) and fill up on the sides.
  • While well-packaged, some of the meat has leaked. It did not seem spoiled, but it’s unappetizing and potentially unsafe to say the least.

Overall, Home Chef has been a good experiment for us. We’ve been using the service for about 3 months, and it’s still novel. There may come a time when it isn’t, but for now we’ll stick with it.

Final comment: while opinions in our family have generally been positive about the food, Spouse did find this note written by Trixie earlier this week:

 

P.S. This post is NOT sponsored in any way by Home Chef. We use them and I thought I’d share the experience, good and bad.

P.P.S. This blog does not, in fact, have any sponsors, although I would welcome an opportunity to shamelessly plug brands I love, like Louis Vuitton. So, Vuitton, if you are reading this, I would be happy to review your spring 2017 collection.

J. Crew Berry Print

I am absolutely loving this new J. Crew berry print, which is featured on everything from shoes to swimsuits to dresses.

This bandana – a bargain at $12.50 – is an easy way to dip your toe into this trend.

This sweater,¬†though, is what’s really my jam (bad pun intended):

Check out the cute striped back:

Shoes are also well represented:

It’s hard to decide which pair is better, but if forced to choose one, I’d take the flats.

It might be a bit much for one outfit, but I would definitely consider pairing this necklace with any of the above:

Because for me, a bit too much is usually the right amount.

Happy weekend!

 

 

 

 

Travel Cosmetics Kit – Update

Well, I never found my perfectly curated set of travel cosmetics, and in the end, I had to replace it all.

I was harboring a secret fantasy up until yesterday that I’d left them at a hotel where I don’t stay often, and that all I’d have to do is go back there and ask if they were in the Lost and Found.

I did.

They weren’t.

I was able to replace everything but my favorite travel item – a Bobbi Brown palette with corrector, concealer, foundation and powder – was no longer available from QVC (or Bobbi Brown, or anywhere for that matter), although I found one from another seller on Amazon.

The rest I ordered directly from Bobbi Brown.

I absolutely love getting new make up, especially unboxing all of the tiny packages, so it was a real treat to find this package waiting for me last Friday.

Here’s the haul:

Bobbi generously included many free samples, so what I got was considerably more than I’d ordered. Score!

I re-purposed an old bag from Aerin Cosmetics for my new stash.

Aerin also makes some great palettes, although they are more for color than skin correction.

Here is the “Weekday palette,” which retails for $70.

Aerin Beauty is seriously hard to find in stores, but I’ve always liked everything I’ve tried. The gold packaging is also super luxe; all of the compacts close with a really satisfying click.¬†

I also recently tried Glossier for the first time.

This brand has so much buzz; I’ve checked it out several times but never found something that hit the tipping point for buying.

After watching several YouTube Glossier reviews and tutorials, I finally decided to try their Generation G matte lipstick. 

Picking a color wasn’t easy, even with¬†helpful videos on Glossier’s site showing the colors in action.

“Like” was a color described as your-lips-but-better, and that seemed to be a good bet. “Crush” initially seemed too bright but many reviews said the color is really subtle and buildable, so I ordered them both.

Although this normally wouldn’t have caught my eye, one reviewer mentioned the heavenly lavender scent of Priming Moisturizer Rich,¬†which was enough for me to put it in my basket.¬†

The final two items I ordered were Milky Jelly cleanser and a highlighter known as the “Haloscope.”¬†

My thoughts on Glossier:

  • The matte lipsticks are so-so. I’m not crazy about the formula and “Like” is practically invisible on me. “Crush” can bleed and get unattractively clumped on any dry areas, leading to a patchy look. The two colors mixed together seem to provide the best results.
  • The Priming Moisturizer Rich is terrific. It’s heavy, but that’s exactly what my skin needs in this cold weather. It sinks in quickly and the scent is really nice. At $35, it’s also a relative bargain for moisturizer of this quality.
  • Full disclosure: I haven’t tried the Milky Jelly Cleanser yet. I just didn’t get around to it.
  • The Haloscope provides a really pretty glow without too much sparkle, but I often forget to put it on. I didn’t like it enough for it to make my travel kit.

My one complaint – and this is in direct contrast to the super luxe packaging from Aerin – is that Glossier’s packaging seems¬†cheap, especially the matte lipsticks.

The plastic tubes are thin, don’t close well and definitely lack a satisfying click with closure.

They remind me of a gift-with-purchase lipstick freebie, in terms of quality.

 

 

 

 

 

March Stitch Fix

I was excited Рas always Рto find my Stitch Fix box waiting on the doorstep for me when I arrived home Friday night. Despite the box being covered in a dusting of fresh snow, I was eager to dive in.

Spoiler alert: This was my favorite Fix to date. 

Even if this had been the only item I received, I still would consider this my best Fix yet, because the first thing I pulled out of the box was just so good.

img_1723

I’d seen someone wearing this Pixley “Kendari” faux suede jacket a few weeks ago and gushed about how much I loved it. When she told me she’d received it from Stitch Fix, I shamelessly asked to see the tag so I could note¬†the brand and make a specific request for this jacket.

When I discovered one of my own in the Fix, I was beyond delighted. 

This moto jacket is incredibly soft and the fit is great. The above picture does not do the color justice; it’s really fawn-like and has blush undertones. It is perfect for spring and I can’t wait to wear it.

Here are the stylist’s comments about the coat:

I saw your request to see the Pixley faux suede Moto jacket in this Fix, and I’m thrilled to tell you that we had one in stock to send you! It’s such a popular item and it’s been flying off the shelves this season! Pair it with your favorite jeans and a t-shirt or layer it over a casual dress for a chic look that’s perfect for work or weekend.

I love how it’s shown on the styling cards:

fullsizerender-4

You can also get a better sense of the color from the image above. Isn’t this pretty?

Total win! Possibly my favorite Stitch Fix item ever.

I couldn’t believe my good fortune when I discovered that the next thing in the box¬†was the Loveappella “Dawnty” pullover, another item I had seen on Stitch Fix review blogs and had Pinned with a comment that I’d love to get it.

img_1725

Although it looks like a sweatshirt, it’s not. The material is more like a thin, soft sweater. The teal accents are what sealed the deal for me.

img_1727

Here’s how it was styled by the Stitch Fix team:

fullsizerender-6

I loved this so much that I wore it the day after I got it.

Next up: the Honey Punch “Novah” elbow patch textured cardigan.

img_1728

This is a very soft off-white cardigan with fabric that reminds me of a thermal knit. The elbow patches provide contrast and are faux suede:

img_1730

One problem that I had with the elbow patches was that the stitching was loose. I had to cut some threads off of each side.

img_1729

Still, I like the style and this is a cozy piece that I will likely reach for often. I absolutely love how it is styled below and plan to wear it with a chambray shirt and booties, as shown on the right.

fullsizerender-7

The final piece of clothing was this Market & Spruce “Austin” polka dot and striped shirt:

img_1731

Here’s the back:

img_1732

This definitely falls under the umbrella of My Style, so I think it was a good pick from my Stylist. I think it suffered in comparison to the other clothing pieces in the box, since I liked them more. Overall, though, this is ok and I will wear it when the weather gets warmer.

The last thing I received was an accessory, which is unusual for me to get in a Fix. This was the Bay to Baubles “Matt” teardrop necklace.¬†

Initially, I was not wowed by this necklace, but I also didn’t notice the tiny rhinestone details until I took it out of the box to photograph it. This considerably upped my interest, and I also realized I have very few silver necklaces that are long enough to layer. This piece is growing on me. (Sorry, no styling cards provided for this).

img_1733

Final detail: the Keep It All price for this Fix was $185, which is one of the lowest I’ve had in a long time. It was a total no brainer to say yes.

Best Fix yet.