savvy shamrocks: dressing your dining table for saint patty’s

March 17, 2014 - Leave a Response

hello friends…and happy saint patrick’s day!

i love today. it’s a holiday the whole world celebrates, that’s just plain fun and makes people happy. it helps that my mom got really into it growing up — making sure we always had at least something green on for school — and also that i married into irishness. a lot of irishness.

so, it only makes sense that — given my newfound obsession with my local 99-cent-only store — that i’d need to create a table centerpiece.  cyrillynn from any 2nd now, a fellow san diego style blogger, recently encouraged me to post a diy on another little something i’d put together (which i still need to do) — but i’m taking her advice now and sharing how to fancy up your own table with some glittery green and gold.

still working on that guinness beef stew? no worries — with just a bit of glassware, inexpensive seasonal decor and fresh flowers, you can whip this up in a mere 15 minutes!


what you’ll need:
- a trifle bowl
- a smaller container to fit inside trifle bowl (i used the dip compartment from a chips-and-dip set)
- a modern vase
- a cake stand
- white everyday plate*
- gold decorative charger*
- bunch of carnations
- bunch of baby’s breath
- decorative glitter picks (i love these shamrock and hat ones!)*
- green or white glitter garlands*
- glitter adhesive letters
- other ireland-inspired tchotchkes

* found while gleefully losing myself in the aisles at 99-cent-only


step 1: arrange the main structure / glassware arrangement.  place the everyday plate on the gold charger, then the modern vase on top of the plate.  set the trifle bowl atop the cake plate.


step 2: strip leaves from carnation stems and arrange bunch in line in modern vase.


step 3: bunch baby’s breath into smaller container, that can fit inside trifle bowl while still leaving a perimeter for garland.  place garland around this smaller container and flush with its top, so baby’s breath sticks out just slightly above garland.


step 4: create desired saying with glitter letters, and arrange/drape glitter garland around both pieces.


step 5: add decorative glitter picks to one or both flower bunches.  sprinkle glitter on plate and top of cake plate, if desired.  arrange other tchotchkes.


step 6: *pat* yourself on the back, you crafty leprechaun!  and enjoy that stew!

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weekend in snaps: pretty plants, punches of color and precious little people

March 3, 2014 - Leave a Response

a little glimpse into my life, by way of snaps from the last couple of weekends.  enjoy!

beautiful yellow daffodil close-up picture

gorgeous daffodils.

beautiful white blooms on tree branches close-up picture

a tree in beautiful bloom.

yellow francesca's coat and i heart shimmer blue necklace

my oh-so-pensive look.  coat from francesca’s, cobalt blue necklace from shimmer.

san diego zoo flamingoes

i love that you call this a “flamboyance of flamingoes.”  a sun-filled trip to the san diego zoo.


sweet little hands.


big brown eyes.

late afternoon illuminating leaves photo

late-afternoon light.

target plaid shirt old navy quilted vest

weekend casual.  plaid shirt and skinnies from target, quilted vest from old navy.

love is (still) in the air: a belated valentine’s day look

February 17, 2014 - Leave a Response

hello friends,

i hope you all enjoyed a wonderful valentine’s day, whether that meant dinner with your special someone, a night in with the gal pals, or some solo-and-happy retail therapy!

having spent friday in the most casual of gear with my littlest in tow, i deemed yesterday my makeup opportunity for this year’s “day of love” outfit.

what resulted from (what i humbly consider) a delightful pairing of leopard, blush and red.  wishing you a fabulous week!


valentine's day look ootd leopard cardigan blush top red pants and heels

blush hair bow alice ivory valentine's day style

blush hair bow: alice + ivory (shop the mini version here)
red statement necklace: francesca’s (shop similar styles here and here)
leopard cardigan and blush ruffled top: h&m
skinny red pants: old navy (shop the direct link here)
red heels: linea paolo, nordstrom rack
gold watch: target (shop the direct link here)
gold link bracelet: victoria’s secret
gold studs: c. wonder (shop the direct link here)
eye and lip color: flower beauty, walmart (visit my tutorial here)
sunnies: foster grant, 99 cents only (yes — you read that right!)

get flirty for spring: a flower beauty makeup tutorial

February 15, 2014 - 2 Responses

flower beauty by drew barrymore makeup tutorial

i should start this post with a simple confession: i love drew barrymore.

it started with a child’s admiration for “the girl from et,” eventually grew to my collecting the greatest rom-coms of the 90s and 2000s — all starring her — and has now evolved into a total crush on the super-fun friend, stylish mom and creative entrepreneur we all would kill to be. i feel like my generation grew up with drew, and she’s just about the cutest gal around.

so, when i heard she launched a line of beauty that was beyond pretty — and affordable, to boot! — i was immediately sold. i rushed myself into walmart for a glorious (and kid-free) afternoon of browsing the shelves with her collection. i’ve been wanting to post a tutorial for some time now, because it’s really that good. and the best part is that the line is totally accessible. priced just right for all women to glamour-up with the highest quality of product.

so without further ado, it is my pleasure to bring you a quick tutorial on creating the perfect sweet and flirty face for spring. with purple hues all the rage this year (given pantone’s selection of radiant orchid as the 2014 “color of the year”), its foundation is a gorgeous shimmery lavender eye color.

what you’ll need:
- flower beauty “win some / rouge some” creme blush in “pure petunia”
- flower beauty “color play” creme eyeshadow in “lilac you a lot”
- flower beauty “easy on the eyes” long-wear eyeliner in “aubergine”
- flower beauty “kiss high-shine lip color” in “morning glory”
- flower beauty “kiss stick velvet lip color” in “get to the poinsettia”

(note: the nail color seen in photos is also flower beauty — give the “nail’d it” lacquer in “i lavendare you” a try today!  i have received tuh-uns of compliments so far.)

and let’s get started!

step 1: start with a clean canvas.

flower beauty by drew barrymore makeup tutorial

step 2: apply flower beauty “win some / rouge some” creme blush in “pure petunia.”  the pigment is rich, so a little goes a long way.  start at the apples of your cheek and apply with fingers in an outward-and-upward sweeping motion, making sure to blend well.

flower beauty by drew barrymore makeup tutorial

flower beauty by drew barrymore makeup tutorial

step 3: apply flower beauty “color play” creme eyeshadow in “lilac you a lot” to lids, sweeping again in an outward-and-upward motion up through crease.  the shadow is on the sheerer side, so feel free to load up if you’re going for an extra-colorful emphasis on the eyes.

flower beauty by drew barrymore makeup tutorial

flower beauty by drew barrymore makeup tutorial

step 4: starting just beyond the outer corner of the lid, pull it taut and gently wipe flower beauty “easy on the eyes” long-wear eyeliner in aubergine, across to create an even line.  i am so, so impressed with this liner.  like, the smoothest.

stop just before you reach the inner corner.  finish with two coats of black or colored mascara, and a shimmery white in inner corners and just below lower lashes.

flower beauty by drew barrymore makeup tutorial

flower beauty by drew barrymore makeup tutorial

step 5: apply flower beauty “kiss high-shine lip color” in “morning glory” for a neutral finish.

flower beauty by drew barrymore makeup tutorial

flower beauty by drew barrymore makeup tutorial

craving more pop?  add a layer of flower beauty “kiss stick velvet lip color” in “get to the poinsettia” (which, by the way, is a really great red on its own).  they blend so beautifully — i love the resulting, customized shade!

flower beauty by drew barrymore makeup tutorial

flower beauty by drew barrymore makeup tutorial

flower beauty by drew barrymore makeup tutorial

major disclaimer, folks — remember this is a makeup-only tutorial…not hair!!  for the *truly* full face, you’ll have to await my next post!

hope you enjoyed, and check out the flower line today!


event recap: bellus academy presents come2gether

February 14, 2014 - Leave a Response

moniker warehouse east village san diego snowflake baking
moniker warehouse, in san diego’s east village

stylist bellus academy presents come2gether
stylists in action

“a strong feeling of enthusiasm or excitement for something or about doing something.”

this is how our friends at merriam-webster define passion.  seems a little *boh-ring* to me, don’t you think?  i prefer this definition a bit further down:

intense, driving, or overmastering feeling or conviction.”

there we go.  i’d say that more accurately sums up how we feel about those things in life that jump us out of bed in the morning.  those things that keep us up the night before, dreaming about how we can forever keep doing what had us creating, buzzing, and feeling electrified that day.

bellus academy presents come2gether
chatting scissors

so are you passionate — like, truly passionate — about what you do?  does your career excite you?  enable you to impact how others see and feel about themselves on a daily basis?

chances are, you’re sadly shaking your head and sighing “i wish!”
well, enter my saturday night.  i had the great privilege of being invited as a san diego style blogger to attend come2gether, a stylist showcase presented by bellus academy to benefit beauty changes lives.
san diego style bloggers terrell mitchell bellus project runway photo winner

san diego style bloggers with terrell mitchell, bellus outreach coordinator (who just won the project runway photo contest — congrats!)

from left to right: me, cyrillynn from any2ndnow, terrell, ashley from array of style, heidi from a fashion statement

talk about a wow factor.  it’s safe to say that the energy present in the moniker warehouse in san diego’s east village, you would not find amongst very many other groups of gathered professionals.  you could feel it, and – as someone looking in on the beauty industry – i have to confess i was pretty jealous.

bellus academy presents come2gether
a captive audience

these artists were so excited to see creation in-the-making and beyond supportive of their own (the cheering abounded).  one thing i kept hearing was “the business we’ve chosen is a powerful one.”  and when you stop to think about it — how true is this?  when you can transform someone’s appearance, aren’t you also transforming their confidence and, in turn, outlook on the world?  beauty is powerful, and it can change lives.

nina kovner bellus academy presents come2together
nina kovner bellus academy presents come2gether
nina kovner, event emcee

nina kovner was the evening’s emcee, and she opened the event with this same message (“i felt it the minute i walked into beauty school”).  she also shared how connective social media is for the beauty space, with searching fingers flying at the mention of every new instagram handle (modernmike13, houseofpop).

lynelle lynch bellus president
lynelle lynch, bellus academy president
lynelle lynch, president of bellus academy, then greeted the audience of stylists and other industryfolk with an introduction to beauty changes lives (bcl), a charitable organization dedicated to empowering the next generation of beauty professionals.
the showcase then opened, and the crowd came alive.  how fun was this??  to say i was inspired would be a gross understatement — i’m now ready for quite the makeover.
diego raviglione bellus presents come2gether
diego raviglione, bellus artistic director, at work

bellus academy presents come2together
capturing a look

bellus academy presents come2gether
color-spraying.  i want some!

bellus academy presents come2gether
thank you, bellus, for the invite.  you may just see my application one day…when are those bcl scholarship dates?

turn up the volume: a february “feel good” playlist

February 1, 2014 - Leave a Response

happy february, everyone!  every year i cannot wait to enter the month of saint valentine — so excited it’s here!

in honor of the most romantic month of the year, i popped together a little lineup of songs that make me really happy (because, after all, doesn’t romance make us all happy?).  it also helps that a recent new car purchase has introduced me to the world of sirius (i know, i know — the last person on earth), and more specifically — to the world of “alt nation” on channel 36.  it is a treasure trove of fantastic up-and-comers (and don’t we all enjoy being first to know?).

here goes…

this one is so, so perfect for starting a new day.  inspirational with a great beat.  (note: i had the official video originally linked — then realized it was, ironically, a bit too dark to keep with the theme!)

pure pop indulgence.  and you can’t beat the swoon-worthy accent (even if the video is a wee scandalous).

don’t you feel cooler already?  and more upbeat?

more pop indulgence.  i can’t help myself (or stop from smiling!)

go on.  strut it — even if you’re driving.  it still counts.

so sweet.  he wrote it about his wife.

and to round out our list, an oldie-but-goodie.  one of my all-times.

what’s on your own “let’s get happy” playlist?  i’d love to hear!

stylish savings: a trip to the bellus academy salon

January 6, 2014 - One Response

bellus academy salon poway, ca
bellus academy salon, poway, ca

i love “firsts” – so what better way to start the new year, than with what-turned-out-to-be a great one!

having already been familiar with bellus academy through a couple of friends who are proud alumni, as well as connections via the san diego style bloggers network and fashion week san diego — i’d thought many a time before about checking out the poway campus’ salon.  and in the interest of being a better “do-er” this year (and needing to pinch my pennies a bit more), i gave them a ring friday morning on the way to work.

i received a call back from the delightful carissa, and — given the terrible non-planner i am – i was so pleasantly surprised when she said they could take me in that day at 5:30p.

bridget warmly greeted me at the reception desk, and walked me back to her station. after an initial chat about what i was looking for (a slight trim to get my strands healthy and shaped, while keeping as much length as possible), she brought her instructor matt over to advise on overall direction.

getting started (the awkward selfie is totally my doing!)

i really enjoyed talking with her during my visit, about her time in the program so far, her background and family…especially since i just can feel the cosmetology student waiting to jump out of my corporate marketing body!  (side note: she even checked to make sure the water temperature was comfortable — no one does that anymore!  i thought it was really sweet.)

i was extremely impressed with how kind the instructors were to all the students on the floor, and equally with the sense of camaraderie i got from the class of students. contrary to some salons, there was no pretentiousness — just a lively group of people perfecting their skills. and with the very clear guidance matt offered bridget, i felt like i was receiving quite the quality education, too!  i should also credit his fellow instructor, who assisted with my sideswept bangs (wish i had asked for his name!).

i’m so happy i “took the plunge” and went for it!  i think it’s safe to say my hair is happy as well.  i also love that i can help someone further their career *and* practice some newfound fiscal responsibility at the same time!

scary pre-salon hair
scary, jungle-mane hair!  run for your lives!
note: it’s basically been in a ponytail for six months.  
(did i mention i had baby #2 in june?)

pretty, soft, post-salon hair
pretty, soft hair à la bridget.  so. much. better.

(in case you’re wondering, a cut is $12 — pick that jaw up — and first-timers receive half-off their initial service.  what?!? – oh yes, ’tis true.  you are able to tip your stylist in cash, or with a bellus gift card they can use for their own services, product, etc.)

thank you, bridget and matt!  look forward to seeing you again soon!

bellus academy salon poway, ca reception desk
with bridget after my visit (in old navy sweater).  is she not the cutest??
fyi: her smock is tone-on-tone leopard print…with ruffles.  major envy.

ready to schedule your own service?  browse the menu, and click here to book.

interested in my recap of bellus artists at work during 2012 fashion week san diego’s “the art of beauty” event?  to read about san diego style bloggers network founders rachel and paulina’s manicure night at bellus’ national city salon, click here.

the ‘do a few days later.  half-up, half-down weekend casual.

time to trinket: another last-minute gift guide

December 24, 2013 - Leave a Response

so, here we are again…the 24th of december.  and — while we may say this every year — Christmas really did sneak up on us this time!  i hope you and yours are enjoying a wonderful holiday season.

i started this annual gift guide two years ago, as a way to celebrate how much I loved my mom’s affinity for little trinkets and tchotchkes we found in our stockings growing up.

and this year, i’m taking it to a new level —  with the official 2013 elle webb style “under-$5-but-looks-anything-but” gift guide!  keeping with last year’s timing, this issue is also a bit late (but hey — new year’s gifts are totally acceptable!).

perhaps all the expenses in buying a new home (thank you, Lord!) are still a bit too fresh — or it’s my own little protest against the overcommercialization of this holiday — but gathering fab finds that are kind on the wallet, too, just makes me so giddy!  and i guarantee you, while you would never suspect it – everything on this list is truly $5 and under!

let’s get started!

you can bank on these cuties
i think i may be the last person on this earth to discover the 99 cent store.  i had always been skeptical of my friends’ stories of this veritable wonderland of savings, but now that i’ve seen for myself — oh boy.  unhealthy obsession time.

these unbelievable cute ceramic own coin banks actually started my co-dependence.  i’ve gifted them now a few times, with nothing but the most gleeful response.

black pink cream ceramic owls from 99 cent only store

black pink cream ceramic own coin banks from 99 cent only


i then came across this metallic pig — also a coin bank — and had to scoop it up.  don’t you think it makes a really whimsical place setting (perhaps to wish prosperity in the new year)?

blue metallic pig coin back 99 cent only store


metallic blue pig from 99 cent only store in holiday place setting


mug shot
i love coffee.  and i love mugs even more.

take a looksy at these two delightful ones from target — how can you go wrong with a personalized item, or a gift that comes already wrapped in a bow!

coffee mugs from target with personalized initial and bow


and speaking of personalized finds, i just couldn’t pass up a tea with my own name (also at 99 cents only!).

lindsay gardens tea bags from 99 cents only store


let’s get ladylike
i am a sucker for the daintier things in life, so you can imagine my delight upon spotting this rose soap (99 cents only) and floral print journal (marukai market, san diego).

rose soap from 99 cents only store and floral journal from marukai market, san diego


and what else do ladies love?  jewelry, of course!  check out these gorg beaded rings from — you guessed it — 99 cents only.

silver and gold beaded rings from 99 cents only store


silver beaded ring 99 cents only store


what are your favorite “$5 and under” secrets?  would love to hear them!

happy holidays, everyone.  hold your loved ones tight and may you feel the joy and peace in the Christmas promise this year.



stylish mom monday: trying the black-and-gold trend

November 4, 2013 - Leave a Response

i have been seeing so many fellow bloggers just killing the black-and-gold action that’s all the rage, so i decided to give it my own spin at a recent sunset wedding in los angeles.

starting with my trusty gal sophia, i layered gold jewelry with pops of red on the top and bottom – read: lips and heels –for some added fun.  i felt deliciously “80s glam,” flashing back to raiding my mom’s jewelry box and makeup drawer as a curious eight-year-old.

can’t wait to do a bit more downtown-y take on this look.  i’m thinking faux leather and spikes!

black jersey wrap dress with gold accessories, waterside wedding


gold watch and earrings, red sally hansel nail polish, flower beauty lip color


black jersey wrap dress and gold watch: merona, target
white and gold bubble necklace: spice market, waco, tx
gold and crystal earrings and bracelet: c. wonder
nail polish: sally hansen insta-dri in rapid red, target
lip color: flower beauty (“get to the point-settia”) by drew barrymore, wal-mart

navy upon navy upon navy: monochromatic made comfy

October 16, 2013 - Leave a Response

i love that part of the development of this little blog of mine, has been pushing my own style limits.

while it probably doesn’t seem daring in the least to most, embracing one color from head to toe used to seem like a fashion risk i just couldn’t pull off.  but with some experimentation over the past two years — as well as a newfound obsession for all things navy — i’ve been sporting variations of the singularly hued look below in making the transition from summer into fall.

the slouchy cardigan keeps me warm (besides serving as the perfect mask for arms-in-need-of-toning!), and along with the forgiving striped tunic, is tops when wanting to stay comfortable.  opaque tights in the same hue help to visually trim my legs, as do the floral patterned platform wedges (read more here on how the pair inspired this blog!).

navy slouchy cardigan and striped tunic, monochromatic navy look

cardigan and gold watch: merona, target
tunic: marshalls
tights: hue, macy’s
floral wedges: forever 21 (similar here)


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