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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Going Minimal(ish)

Do you find yourself staring into the void that is your closet, wondering why - in a space bursting with clothing - you can't piece together an outfit that you're actually excited to wear? If so, welcome, my friend. And if not, who are you? Also, get out (just kidding please stay forever I'm sorry!). I know this isn't a groundbreaking concept. I mean:

Google image results knows what I mean.

So the question I started to ask myself lately is, "Why do I feel like this? I bought everything in this closet, didn't I?" And I came across a recurring list of issues:

Shrinkage. Probably my biggest closet issue. I'm looking at you, Old Navy. Regardless of washing in cold water, or using as little heat as possible in the dryer, I own so much that just never fit the same way after the first wash.
Fit. Different from shrinkage in that these are items that still have their original shape. I either bought them with the misguided notion that I could overlook a sizing issue, or they fit at one time and I've naturally outgrown them.
Material. Something that I wish I had paid more attention to, and plan to focus on going forward. It seems that scratchy seams or shirts that are too thin for appropriate daytime wear usually boil down to a material issue. And those shirts you're afraid to wash for fear of them disintigrating on the gentle cycle? Some things are not meant to be worn.
Trend. Colors, patterns, cuts that were so in..for that 1 week in spring 2014. Yes, I bought (and never wore) a hi-low dress, I cannot tell a lie. Did I ever wear it? No! What a waste.

After a recent clean out, I'm left with a very paired down closet and a desperate need to rebuild. Which is why I've been reading up on taking a minimalist approach and creating a capsule wardrobe. Now although I've never considered myself to be super trendy or fashion forward, I can't deny that almost everything I recently cleaned out of my closet are things I didn't think about long term. I didn't think about how to care for it, or about the fit, or "will I like this trend as much in 6 months as I do right now?" And to me, that's what this challenge is about. I'm also hoping to achieve:

➤ Quality over quantity.
➤ More money saved overall.
➤ A decluttered closet and a decluttered mind.
Less. Laundry. Oh my god.

And no, these are not all the "philosophies" of minimalism, and there are certainly people that adopt much stricter guidelines for their closet. And "capsule" isn't on size fits all. Some people count accessories, so people don't, for example. And the number of items will absolutly vary depending on your needs. Some helpful guides for myself have come from XO Vain and Unfancy. Unfancy in particular has an amazing guide to creating a capsule wardrobe, and explains it in a more inspiring way than I ever could, so do yourself a favor and start reading this blog STAT. And on the youtube side of things, Vivianna Does Makeup has a great series all about cleaning out her wardrobe. She makes sharing a small closet with another person look effortless - highly recommended!

The jury is out on whether or not I can accomplish this capsule wardrobe with the same conviction that others are able to do. But I'm sure as heck determined to adopt a version of minimalism that works for me, and show you what I'm doing and why. So get ready to go minimalist minimalish with me!

Friday, January 9, 2015

Goodbye 2014! Bring it, 2015.

2014 was my year of really getting stability back. We were on our own again for the whole year, Ryan got a new job, and things in general felt nice and solid. It was a nice year of laying down foundation that we've needed for a long time! So now that that's done, I think 2015 can start off on a great foot. I know they say you should make your resolutions specific so you have something to measure your success by, but that never works for me. So that being said, here are my resolutions:

1. Cut the crap: (in case you couldn't tell, I'm not one for kind and gentle pep talks). What's in my life that I don't need? What clothes am I not wearing? Why did I waste money on it? Why don't I just put those dishes away when I know they have to get done? Cut the crap, Trina. I want to spend this year focusing on what stresses me out (for example: everything), and preventing what parts of it that I can.

2. Pull the trigger: I want to actually start doing some of the things I've always wanted to do. For example, I've never been happy with my bedroom. I've always wanted a headboard and a new dresser. So every bonus, and every tax return, I tell myself this is it and I'm finally going to do it!!!.... And then of course I don't. So I've started to tell myself, if I want to do something, and I'm never going to stop wanting it, why am I always finding an excuse? So before I could talk myself out of it I already bought some new bedroom pieces. There will be pictures, of course.

3. Take time to learn something: pretty self explanatory, but basically I mean anything from finding an exercise I enjoy, to working on understanding coding more for this blog, and learning dishes that incorporate more fruits and veggies into meals. Ugh, this feels like the cheesiest resolution to write and I hated doing it, but... ehh, what are you gonna do, ya know?

I have a lot of stuff I hope to write about starting soon. I don't want to make promises because then...well, I'd hate for you to actually expect something of me. Buuuuut I will say that I plan on doing a wardrobe revamping series called GOING MINIMAL(ISH), and writing a lot more on new and exciting beauty and skin care lines I am finally trying out. Here's to the new year!

Monday, December 8, 2014

A Classy Evening of Class. And Wine.

My company throws amazing parties. It's the one night of the year I get to enjoy living like a rich socialite.
Nothing much to say beyond that.
I mostly just wanted to post photos.

(Wine makes me pose better. Just one of its many benefits.)

Friday, December 5, 2014

Spotlight: Josie Maran Cheek Gelee

I've always been slightly self conscious about blush. "I'm pale!" "Will I look like a clown?" "Brushes r hard 2 use, wah." etc etc. Needless to say, it took me long enough to even own more than one powder blush. I ease into things very slowly. I'm that person getting into the pool one step at a time over the course of 20 minutes because I'm trying to get used to the temperature. So powder blush -- first step. But I kinda stumbled on the cheek gelee blushes by chance just because I was curious about the texture. I swatched 'Berry Bliss', the darkest, scariest color of the bunch, just for kicks. Cut to a year later, and it's probably tied with Tarte's 'Exposed' as my # 1 favorite and most used blush. I washed my powder blush brush about a month ago, and it has not been used since. That's how often I use this blush. I think that warrants their own little moment of glory on the blog.

I own three colors in total, Berry Bliss, Honeymoon Honey and Poppy Paradise. In terms of favorites, I would list them in the same order. So why do I love them. Well let's see:

➤ Natural finish.
➤ Lasts all day.
➤ Totally buildable.
➤ Cruelty free.
➤ Hydrating, but not greasy looking.
➤ Will probably never run out, ever.

Like I mentioned, I've owned Berry Bliss for just about a year, and have used it a lot. And as you can see, there's still plenty left. It probably has to do with the fact that I apply it with the e.l.f. stippling brush, and a little goes a very long way. It says to apply with your fingers, but I prefer this much better.

You can find these for $22 at Sephora, but it's also worth it to check out for sales at the Josie Maran website directly, because they'll sometimes have a sale going on and it's free shipping on orders over $25. And lo and behold they're actually offering 20% off your order of $50+ with code JMCFRIEND. I think Pink Escape is next on my list...

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

This Ginger's Gift Guide: Gal Edition

Phew, now that the Christmas season has official begun (!!) and the guy's gift guide is out of the way, let's talk about what I want the ladies! No real introduction needed here, we can just get started.

gift guide for girls

1. I don't know anyone who would turn down the prospect of a nice relaxing bath once and a while, and you can make it more enjoyable with some Rica Bath Teas or Herbivore Botanicals Bath Salts. There are so many different varieties to choose from, so look around to find one that fits the stressed/tired/pamper-loving girl in your life.

2. Winter is a harsh and cruel mistress that takes great pleasure in draining your lips of all the moisture and leaving behind a sad, chapped mess. Not that I'm bitter or anything, but if I were, I would be much appreciative of something like the Osmia Organics Honey-Myrrh Lip Repair. Tons of good ingredients, cute packaging, and an aid against the lip-hating weather - a perfect stocking stuffer!

3. I love Kate Spade, this is not a secret. And as someone who owns several KS rings, let me just say that the Kate Spade sailor's knot ring would be a beautiful addition to anyone's collection. It's simple, but it's gold, and it's the kind of piece you can wear with anything.

4. For the interior decorator (wannabes included), look no further than the home section of Leif. All of the cute vases and planters you could possibly want. They also have some beautiful kitchen wares and jewelry to boot!

5. I've yet to meet a Rifle Paper Co print I didn't immediately want. If you know someone like me, why not get them 12 prints in the form of a 2015 Travel the World calendar. Perfect rotating art on the wall!

6. Candles are always a safe bet, and lately I've been loving my Pommes Frites Candle Co. in Teakwood and Tobacco. It such a nice, warm smell, I could burn it all day. There are other scents as well, if that's not her thing. But seriously, give the scent a try if you find it in store.

7. If all else fails, make her laugh. And if you can't make her laugh, get someone else to do it! Amy Poehler recently released Yes Please, and I for one am waiting expectantly for it to land under my tree this year. But if she already has it and likes it, try Mindy Kaling's Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns). It is seriously full of the good word and will keep you amused from start to finish.
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