Archives For March 2014

You know those mornings where you just pop out of bed and put together an outfit without even thinking about it? Yeah, that doesn’t happen to me either. Ever. People are always telling me to lay my clothes out the night before, but I can promise you that whatever I’m feeling the night before will either a) not be what I’m feeling come morning or b) I’ll be having one of those mornings where NOTHING looks good to me.

Last Tuesday might have been the exception to the rule. I laid out a nice outfit the night before and ACTUALLY still felt happy with it the following morning! It was the strangest thing.

The weather was a bit warmer, and sunny, on Monday, so I laid out a lovely spring outfit. Wouldn’t you know that Tuesday was mildly colder? Might be part of the reason why I was still OK with the outfit — because I was READY for spring!

OOTD - 3.25.14

Outfit Details:

Ecru, double pocket sheer blouse via The Limited

Bright blue, straight leg trousers via Express

Pink Sunday tote via Angela Roi

If colours aren’t your thing, well, that’s just a shame because colour makes the world go round! You can always mute coulor by pairing them with neutrals — hence my ecru blouse. And though you can’t see my feet (I had my runner’s on at the time!) I also paired the trousers with nude Mary-Jane heels from Nine West.

I don’t think people in Ireland are prone to bold colours in the office, but hey, I’m bringing my own sense of fashion to the office — so let them gawk! Be true, be you.

XOXO – K

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I’ve taken quite a few Thursdays off from the Thursday Throw Down as of late. I promise I’m still trying out my fragrances, I just haven’t had the time or energy to put my thoughts onto the screen. Today, I’m bringing it all back! Welcome to another rendition of the Sephora Fragrance Sampler showdown.

This week, I’m pitting two very respectable brands, Givenchy and Versace, against each other and the fragrances are going head to head. How will the competition play out? Will either of these two oust the reigning champs and move into the top three? Read on to find out!

Givenchy – Very Irresistible

Givenchy - Very Irresistible

The elegant tradition of French style meets the energy and magic of the American films in this fragrance with bursts of roses followed by star anise and verbena leaf. It leaves a casual impression  that is energizing and its vibrant freshness will make you feel full of life.

This is a wonderful fragrance. It is light; It is elegant; You can literally smell the roses, and roses are NEVER bad! It really is a vibrant fragrance and does make you feel fresh. I won’t lie, I wore it to work one day with an A-line skirt and a striped top, and paired with kitten heels and I felt VERY Audrey Hepburn-esk all day with just a spray of the fragrance. I guess that’s the elegant French style meeting the American films…

I would absolutely love to make this my every day fragrance. However, the more fragrances I sample, the more I realize I can’t limit myself to just one. Why? Because my mood changes constantly, especially at the early hours of the morning, and having to limit myself to just one would never suit all of these moods! So, while I have to choose only one from this sampler pack for the full size bottle, it’s safe to say I’ll likely be expanding my fragrance collection significantly in the coming months!

Conclusion: This fragrance is fun, light, and absolutely brilliant for the office. It really does make you feel full of life and that is a GREAT quality, especially on a Monday morning!

Versace – Bright Crystal

Versace - Bright Crystal

Inspired by a mixture of Donatella’s favourite floral notes, this fragrance has floral and fruit hints of lemon, pomegranate, peony, and lotus flower followed by hints of musk. The fragrance is playful as the shimmering fruits and rich amber encourage spontaneous gestures and instant parties.

With just one spray onto the wrists, your nose is filled with the citrus notes and the floral arrangement and it is an absolutely divine combination. It isn’t overwhelmingly powerful, but is perfectly balanced and lingers quite nicely in the air. This fragrance packs a bit more of a punch than the Irresistible, but in a good way. This one is still light, but has a bit more umph to it when sprayed, due to the mixture of the citrus and the florals.

As the description implies, it’s almost as if my nose immediately wants to party and all those little hairs inside my nose (invisible to the eye of course!) are starting to dance with delight. This is definitely a fragrance I would want sitting on my vanity. It is perfect as a day fragrance for the office (who wouldn’t want to feel like partying all day?!) as well as the perfect balanced fragrance for a night out on the town. It will have the boys lining up, I just know it!

Conclusion: I love the balanced blend of the floral and citrus notes of this fragrance. It is bold and fun without complexity or overpowering the you you try to create. Perfect fragrance for day or night!

Have you tried either of these fragrances? TWEET ME! If you are keeping up with these Thursday show down posts, I now have a top five list and it’s going to be quite difficult to pick just one and I still have six more to sample! I don’t know about you, but I’m sensing a fragrance splurge in my future.

Until next time. XOXO – K

Base on my Tried & Tested: Scottish Fine Soaps Bath Milk & Body Creme you know I’m a pretty big fan of a nice long soak in the bathtub. So much so, that I recently ran out of the Scottish Fine Soaps Au Lait Bath Milk and I’ve yet to order any more from the UK. (tsk tsk on me, I know!)

What’s a girl to do in the mean time when she runs out of her favorite product? Why, look for a suitable (in the mean time) replacement. I always worry about scents, so shopping around to find a replacement was not something I was interested in doing! Lucky for me, the replacement I so desperately needed more or less found me!

Grace Cole Bubble Bath LabelI was in TK Maxx, strolling down the skin products aisle with my basket when a lady bumped into the display and knocked all the bits over. I just happened to be standing in the right place, at the right time, as this Grace Cole Indulgent Foam Bath leapt off the shelf and into my basket. Talk about timing!

The bottle is quite lovely with the hummingbird and floral design. I’m a sucker for great product packaging and this definitely grabbed my immediate attention! The bow was the icing on the cake! I twisted off the gold cap and my nose had a sniff.

Grace Cole Bubble Bath

The magnolia scent is dominant, but the vanilla is definitely in there — especially once you pour it into the bath and let it foam up! I’m actually surprised I liked the smell of this as I’m not a huge fan of magnolia! Maybe noses work the same as taste buds and are constantly changing and evolving? No matter, I enjoyed the scent enough to make the purchase!

The ginger essential oil doesn’t pack much punch by way of smell, but you can definitely tell it’s in there with how soft and smooth your skin feels after a nice soak. The bottle also has chamomile infused with the foam so it is not only smoothing, but calming as well.

This is definitely a nice way to unwind after a stressful day in the office! You skin will feel great and the foam will leave you refreshed and lightly fragranced. This is definitely a great product to have in the bathroom and the scent is great for all ages! And if magnolia isn’t your thing, Grace Cole carries three other scents as well: Lavendar & Chamomile, Lily & Verbena, or White Rose & Lotus Flower. In the UK/Ireland, this 500 ml bottle will set you back less than 7 quid. VALUE!

Bathtub

Just add water and candles and enjoy! (I had a nice soak after the Electric Run, and as you can see, I put my glow sticks to good use!)

XOXO – K

Is there any better feeling than the excitement you feel on a race day? That’s part of what the runners call “runner’s high” – so I think. It’s particularly exciting when you are running a night race, for the sheer fact that you have ALL DAY to build anticipation!

On Saturday, I woke up and met my running buddy, Lorna, for brunch in the cozy little neighbourhood of Ranelagh. What better way to fuel your body for a run than with a spinach and tomato omelette? YUM. After brunch, Lorna and I set our meeting time for the race, and parted ways so I could head to Dundrum to pick up my race packet.

Electric Run Photo Wall

When I popped open the race bag and found all my goodies, I knew the Electric Run was going to be simply fabulous!

Electric Run Goody Bag

The glow in the dark timing chip, the glow stick glasses, and a glow in the dark running t-shirt. OH YES! Even the race bib was brightly coloured. I was pumped already and it was only 2PM.

About 5:30 PM I decided I needed some pre-race fuel. On this particular day, I opted for a Juice Plus Complete shake, which is a blend of proteins, complex carbohydrates, and fiber to keep me fueled for hours.

JP Complete - Chocolate Covered Strawberry

I call this shake, chocolate covered strawberry as I blended the chocolate shake powder with strawberries and unsweetened almond milk. It’s almost like a chocolate/strawberry milkshake from Sonic, but with almost no fat, a wealth of protein, and minimal sugar. Who needs a $4 or $5 smoothie (or more if you add protein powders and the extras!) when you can have Complete nutrition for less than $2? My exact thoughts! 

After sipping on my shake, it was FINALLY time to reunite with Lorna and head off to the race!

Now, this wasn’t my first night race as I’d done the Fireball 5K a few times in Knoxville at Fourth of July, but this was my first Electric Night Run. And the race went a little something like this:

Electric Run Race Course - Arches

Walking towards the start of the race, you get to see part of the course in action. It was still daylight at this point, but once the sun set the neon lights light up the skies!

Electric Run Friends

My running crew! Myself, Lorna, Melanie (Editor-in-Chief at IMAGE), and Jeanne (IMAGE Daily). A huge thanks to Trevor (TNT24.ie) for snapping the photos for us! He was great craic to hang with at the start line! And tall enough to get the best photos! 🙂

Electric Run Start Queue

Excitement just keeps building! The electrified start line, complete with live DJ–who played an outstanding mix of tunes to keep us pumped and warm on the chilly, windy night!

Electric Run Race Course - Trees

FINALLY we made it past the starting line (they were releasing waves in 3 minute intervals and while the race started at 7:30, we didn’t cross the start line until nearly 8:20!) I only stopped for one photo of the course, but I really liked the trees! Another neat section of the course had umbrellas hanging upside down from the rafters while “It’s Raining Men” played on the stereo!

After PartyAnd post race, this is where the fun happened. With a live band on set, the electrified racers were in full-on rave mode — jumping around, dancing, singing, and enjoying the post-race activities.

All in all, despite it being incredibly cold and windy, it was a fantastic run and I’d do it again in a tick-tock! Had such a fabulous time! Definitely looking forward to the Great Ireland Run in two weeks time and another night run next month as well!

XOXO – K

Last week was back to work for me. I missed out getting up any of my actual “back-to-work” outfit concoctions last week due to the One Year Abroad focus. Never fear, I looked pretty stellar!

This week, now that I have a feel for what the general consensus is office-appropriate clothing, and I have five minutes to think, I’ve put together my first back-to-work look for you. It’s pretty bare-bones as far as I’m concerned, but it’s easy enough to throw together if you have a few basics in your wardrobe!

From Head to Toe: Outfit of the Day 3.10.14 – Back to Work!

OOTD - 3.10.14

Never mind that I look like the angriest woman on the face of the earth! I probably just hadn’t had my morning coffee yet — and it was Monday after all!

Outfit Details:

Three quarter-sleeved, patterned blouse: The Limited

OOTD - 3.10.14 (top pattern)

If you look closely, it’s really a mind trick! (No, I’m only kidding, but that’s what it reminds me of…I could never do those anyway, so if you see the hidden magic, let me know!)

Black, peplum pencil skirt: The Limited

OOTD - 3.10.14 (skirt)

I love a good pencil skirt, but add in a bit of flirty peplum and I’m just sold!

I didn’t actually wear those shoes in the office — I have black heels at my desk — but a 2K walk isn’t happening in heels, so I opt for the flats most days. Of course, with all the walking, you go through them like nobody’s business, so, you opt for the über cheap ones (i.e. 6-8 Euro) at Penny’s and call it a day. I won’t tell if you don’t?

So, ignore my crappy iPhone image quality — my technology is more and more dated by the minute and it’s clearly showing! What do you think? Easy enough to pull off in the office and still look like a professional? I assure you, I only had about 30 seconds to make the game time decision on what to wear as I was running incredibly late, despite getting out of bed earlier than the alarm. #StoryOfMyLife!

I’m sure quite a few future OOTD posts will be office looks — that is why I started this little blog in the first place. So stay tuned!

XOXO – K