Live Chic Tanks and Tees and FitBloggin Prep

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It’s been a busy last few weeks, but here are some things going on.

Live Chic Tank Top

I’ve been dreaming about designing some inspirational tank tops and t-shirts to wear from studio-to-street for awhile now. I looked into getting some shirts printed from a local printer, but I don’t think that will work for me…for now. If I only had one or two main designs, I think the local printer would have been a good route to take. But, I have so many ideas for designs in my head and not enough money to print them all.

I decided to open a Spreadshirt shop to test the waters so I can upload as many designs as I want. I only have one design up right now, but I have another designed (we have two options – I’ll do a vote soon to see which one you guys like more) and more in my head!

Click here to check out The Chic Life Spreadshirt Shop!

T-Shirt Delivery of Live Chic Tanks

I decided to do a small order of tank tops and t-shirts to see how they look in person. My delivery came just in time for me to take them to Fitbloggin later this week!

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Here’s the first design – “Live Chic”. It’s a reminder to live the chic life every day!

Live Chic Tank Top

I got a couple extra tanks and tees in black, gray, and pink to giveaway at FitBloggin.

My FitBloggin HTML CSS Presentation

Speaking of FitBloggin, I’m presenting at this year’s conference! I’m covering Intro to HTML and CSS for Bloggers. Click here to read a description of my presentation. Here’s a sneak peek. I’m putting the final touches on my presentation, but I’m super excited…and nervous! Cross your fingers that the presentation goes okay!

Does anyone have any HTML and CSS questions? Let me know in a comment or tweet me @thechiclife.

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I leave for FitBloggin later today. Savannah, here I come! Can’t wait to meet everyone at the conference!

Thanks for stopping by!

3 Rules for Closet Purging – Closet Spring Clean

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It’s time for a spring clean of my wardrobe! What about you? I haven’t posted recently about working towards my Parisian Wardrobe, but it’s still very much a goal for me. I’ve been letting everyday business get in the way of spending some QT looking through my clothes and accessories, but there’s nothing like a Green Jeans Consignment Sale to kick your rear into gear.

As I looked through my closets, I followed 3 rules for closet purging. I’ll share those below.

Green Jeans Consignment Sale

{My goods for the Green Jeans Sale – I have 114 items in the spring Southpark sale}

Each time I participate in a Green Jeans sale, it gets a little easier to let things go. It also helps to look at something and say, I didn’t sell this in the last 5 sales because I said I’d wear it. Here we are, and I still haven’t worn it. Maybe it’s time to let it go. There are some other items, like a couple Coach purses, that I’ve been holding onto for sentimental reasons. But, I finally added them this time around. One of my main motivations is knowing I can turn those clothes (and accessories) I don’t wear into cash.

Green Jeans Consignment Sale

{A couple J. Crew cardigans that are super soft and pretty with cute little buttons that unfortunately shrunk}

3 Rules for Closet Purging (Parisian Wardrobe Style)

I’ve been doing a lot of analysis on my current wardrobe, and asking myself some good questions. What do I really-really wear? What are my favorite things to wear? What are the things I gravitate towards. What do I have in my closet that I like but look at and say, I don’t want to wear that today because   (insert reason)   ?

Rule #1: If there are things you consistently pass over, they need to go…even if you like them or think they’re cute. If you’re not wearing them, they’re taking up precious real estate in your closet that they shouldn’t. Make room for something you love.

You may pass over something because of the next rule, or because the item in question is too big, too small, too uncomfortable. Whatever the reason, unless you can fix it (get it tailored?), it may be time to move on.

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I’ve also tried to be realistic with myself about my style. My current style. I used to wear a lot more preppy pieces of clothing and accessories. I’ve grown away from that in both my work and casual wear. I try to remind myself – there’s a reason you stopped wearing some of things you did.

Rule #2: Ask yourself as you evaluate something if it fits with your current style. Style can easily change over time, and your wardrobe should change with you. I used to hold onto things “in case I need them one day”, but unless you have a huge basement or attic (and even if you do) to store these types of clothes, this may not be the best strategy. Remember the goal is to have items you truly love and love to wear in your closet.

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Rule #3: Quality over quantity. It’s better to replace ten things you don’t wear any more or don’t really like to wear with one item you love and that makes you feel confident and happy.

This last rule is really a theme of the Parisian Wardrobe, but I try to remind myself of this as I’m pulling items from my closet. I used to dream of having a closet like Cher’s in Clueless. You know, the one with the rotating hanger rack. But, I’ve come to a place where I believe you really can have too much clothes.

I pulled six pairs of shoes that fell under Rule #1 above and replaced them with one new pair I recently purchased. I moved the six pairs into another room where I was gathering items for Green Jeans a few weeks ago and forgot about them! Guess I didn’t need to hold onto those after all if I can’t even remember I have them. If I was actually wearing them (and needed them), I would have looked for them. I didn’t, so they’re getting prepped for sale at Green Jeans right now!

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Even though this process of closet purging is getting easier, it’s not easy. I probably shouldn’t be so attached to my clothes and accessories, but for whatever reason, I often am. I’ll remember a special event where I wore something or if I bought something because of a special event (a raise at work or for another celebration). I try to remember that I have the memories and the experience and that’s more important than the physical item. You’re not defined by the things you own. You are just you, and you are fabulous with or without those strappy shoes you haven’t worn in two years. Got it? Good!

Anyone else doing a spring clean of their closet?

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If you’re in the Charlotte area, check out the Green Jeans Consignment Sale. It’s happening this weekend and Sunday, most of the items go to 50% off! If you’re thinking about consigning, I recommend stopping by, even if you’re not planning to shop to get an idea of how the event runs and check out pricing to give you guidelines for when you consign with Green Jeans.

Thanks for reading!

Work Outfit: Red Pants

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I found these red dress pants on sale at J. Crew awhile back. To wear them to the office, I tone them down with neutrals, like this black and white patterned top and black blazer. I actually am not a fan of blazers, but they’re just so darn professional. I like to wear them especially on days when I have important meetings. Nothing says “I’m gonna kick some corporate America a$$ today” more than the blazer. Seriously though, it’s an easy no-brainer for a great work-chic look. Plus, a blazer serves as a nice layer during transition times in the weather like now when that heavy pea coat would look ridiculous, no matter how cold the weather starts in the morning.

Work Outfit: Red Pants

Pants: J. Crew (scored on sale!) | Top: Banana Republic | Blazer: Brooks Brothers | Heels: Banana Republic | Purse: Tory Burch Amanda Classic Handle Hobo (scored on sale at their last friends & family sale and used Green Jeans $ to purchase!)

Green Jeans {SouthPark – Fall 2013}

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I’m at the beach – a quick pit stop on the way to Zumba Convention 2013 in Orlando, FL – lounging on the ocean view porch of my hotel and taking a moment to share info about the Green Jeans pop-up consignment sale starting TOMORROW in Charlotte, NC. Technically, the charity sale is happening right now, but you’d already know about this sale if you had tickets for that!

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{postcard image thanks to Green Jeans Consignment}

I spent a large portion of this past weekend prepping for Green Jeans instead of packing for Zumba convention.

I got really excited about purging my closet after seeing the wonderful results from consigning at the last sale, so I already had some items set aside to sell that I pulled shortly after the spring event. In addition to the pre-pulled items, I went ahead and had some tough love on my closet and pulled items that I hadn’t been willing to part with before. It was difficult (yes, I’m attached to my clothes), but things have gotten easier with every sale. I love seeing more space in my closet and more money in my account! These positives help me be more apt to adding something to my Green Jeans consignor items.

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I used a TV table and my laptop to turn one room into command central as I priced items I had pulled and placed on a rolling rack.

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But things don’t end with the purging. When you consign with Green Jeans, you get to price all your own items and decide if you want to let them be sold at a discount. But printing and cutting tags and then attaching the tags to the clothes is the real doozy for me. Entering the items can take awhile if you go slowly or have trouble pricing, but I zipped through that part pretty quickly. I used a scrapbook tool to cut the tags, and I used a tagging gun, clear packing tape, and some ribbon to add the price tags to all my clothes, belts, purses, and shoes.

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All in all, I have 115 articles of clothes, plus shoes and accessories for sale. I transferred 39 from the last sale, and all the rest were either set aside shortly after the last event or pulled Saturday night. Some of you may remember that some clothes I wasn’t ready to let go of awhile back went to my parents house. I even pulled some of the nicer items from there, too, and added those to the mix. Phew! It was a lot of work, but I’m looking forward to tracking the sales as they go. I’ll be checking in from Zumba Convention to see how the sale goes and how my clothes are selling. I’m just sad I can’t shop the sale because I always find wonderful things there! If you’re in town, I definitely recommend you go!

You can get more info at greenjeanssale.com. Oh, and sign up for their newsletter for coupons and news. I helped out with some of their web graphics this year, so you may see something I’ve done or photos I’ve taken in the newsletters!

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Also, here’s a random food shot, since I know you guys like the “eats” photos here on The Chic Life. This is one of the delicious meals we enjoyed this past weekend – a turkey and muenster panini on toasted sesame seed bread, cherry tomato and fresh herb salad (with parsley and basil from our backyard), and pickles made by my parents with cucumbers from their garden. I hope I get to enjoy another one of these tasty meals again soon!

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I’ll have photos from the beach and Zumba Convention to share soon! Be sure to check on Instagram, twitter, and Facebook for faster updates! ;) Thanks for stopping by!

Conservative Neon {Outfit}

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You could possibly blame my love of Zumba, but I’m pretty sure I’ve always loved bright colors. I’ve been playing with colors in my work outfits lately, and my most recent challenge has been making neons work appropriate in a conservative office. I got this neon green, floral skirt at J. Crew when I had a 30% off pass. It was pricey, but it was one of my splurges for the summer. I went one size up so the length was just a couple inches above my knee, which I understand is a flattering skirt length for shorties.

I went with neutrals for the rest of the outfit and added a conservative gray jacket on top to help tone down the look. This jacket was a find at the last Green Jeans consignment sale (which is happening next week if you’re in the Charlotte area!) for under $20. It’s one of my other favorite sweater-jackets (similar to the one I blogged about last time). It looks sort of like a blazer but feels like a sweater. I love it!

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Outfit details:

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I went to the Southend area of town to shoot the photos on this post. I love this part of the city, especially how much it’s being revitalized.

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Charlotte has been an interesting place to live over the last few years. I remember when the town seemed crazed with money. The ritzy mall was always bustling and huge condo buildings were going up left and right. Then, the market crashed, and the half finished condos sat half-finished, slowly decaying in the open air. At the offices where I worked, I watched people slowly trickle out while hiring freezes kept new people from coming in. It felt a little like my future was disappearing before my eyes. But things are getting better every day.

The offices are filling out again. New buildings are going up. I love seeing the seats filling up at work, and it makes me happy to see the construction projects all around. I’m enjoying all the signs of things getting better, and I’m staying hopeful things keep going in the right direction.

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I wanted to share a recent note from the Universe that came through my email the other day. I posted it on The Chic Life’s Facebook page, but in case any of you don’t follow there, here’s the quote:

It’s perfectly normal, Diana, that when waiting for a really big dream to come true it seems like it’s taking forever, you wonder if you’re doing something wrong, and you feel like you should just be happy with less.

But I promise you, no matter how long it takes, once it happens it’ll seem as if time flew, you’ll wonder how you ever doubted yourself, and you’ll feel like you should have aimed a little higher.

Aim a little higher, Diana -

The Universe

Remember – aim a little higher!

My Latest Work Uniform {Outfit} and Nom Nom burger

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I tend to wear the same thing to work. Once I’ve found something I like, I wear that over and over and over again. Not literally the same outfit. It’s more like the same kind of outfit.

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My current uniform = cropped skinny pants (that are a little loose) + t-shirt + jacket that is a sweater that looks like a blazer (so comfy!) + heels/flats

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Not sure exactly why I love my pants so loose. Some of it is a comfort thing. Some of it is not wanting people noticing my outfit in a way other than I had intended. I like looking professional, not sexy, when I’m at work. I’ll save those stretchy skinny jeans/pants for another occasion! Either way, maybe some of it is also because I’m really a tomboy at heart. You knew this, yes?

Anywho, I scored these red pants on sale plus an extra 30% off making them only $27.99 (down from $89.99, marked on sale to $39.99)

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And this jacket has been a real staple for me on my new work project. I wear this thing almost once a week or at least every other week. I found this on sale for $69.99 and got it for $48.99 after an extra 30% off.

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Full outfit:

  • Red dress pants: J Crew
  • T-Shirt: Gap
  • Navy Sweater Jacket: J. Crew
  • Peep-Toe Heels: Banana Republic
  • Tote: Michael Kors

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Not my best picture, but you can see my shorter hair cut pretty well here. My hair has grown out a couple inches since this photo was taken (been meaning to blog it for awhile). I’m now at the point where I need to decide if I want to grow my hair out and have it long-ish for fall/winter or go short again. I’m leaning towards short…especially with Zumba convention coming up next month!

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We recently checked out one of the new-ish restaurants in town, Nom Nom Burger, which features Asian style burgers.

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The burgers are wonderful. I love the way they cook their burgers but the Asian themed toppings really take things over the top. This is a photo of the Kalbi Burger – “Sterling Silver® ground beef. Kalbi marinade. Kimchi. Fried egg. Sesame roasted nori. Spicy aioli. Roasted garlic.”

This one was good, but the Nom Nom Burger is our fave – “Sterling Silver® ground beef glazed with house special teriyaki sauce. Provolone cheese. Fresh sauteed Shiitake mushrooms with mirin. Caramelized onions with ginger orange marmalade. Mayo.”

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The restaurant features other dishes for the non-burger fan, like Yakisoba (Japanese style noodles with veggies and optional addition of chicken for $2). The noodles were great, but the burger is still tops in my eye.

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Nom Nom Burger has delicious desserts (try the “Xango” – cheesecake and puff pastry…hello!), but if you’re wanting something simple, you can always hit up the Ben & Jerry’s right across the patio.

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Reader question: What’s your work uniform?

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