Monthly Archives: April 2013

BCBG black off shoulder dress LLS MWOY Miami Gala Witte 2

We did it!

The morning after, we did it.

starbucks intercontinental Miami

I made it.  I made it through 10 weeks of campaigning to raise money for cancer research through the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society with tons of support and help from loved ones and total strangers.  I am not sure I can really put into words what an incredible experience this has been because honestly, until Saturday, April 20, the night of the grand finale, surrounded by close friends, I absolutely had no idea what a big deal being a nominee and participant in the LLS Man & Woman of the Year Campaign was.

Do you know what WE did?  We raised nearly $10,000, almost TEN THOUSAND DOLLARS.  And it was tough.  If you know me personally, you know I prefer not to ask for anything from anyone but I had to ask everyone I know for money and to spread the word.  We sent letters (in the mail!), we wrote blogs, we sent emails and I may or may not have sent some aggressive texts messages and I definitely judged if you didn’t support (just saying, that’s reality).  We posted on Facebook, on Twitter, on Instagram, on LinkedIn.

And you know what else?  At the close of the Champions of Hope Gala after all the nominees had been recognized, after all of the city of Miami’s cheeks had been air-kissed, after every single champagne bottle had been popped and served, I stopped to hug my campaign manager and thank her and she told me, “I think you are the youngest person to have ever gone through with the campaign in South Florida.”  To which I promptly responded, “I am not that young.”  Sure enough, she was right so I need to really thank everyone who helped because we were the youngest network for sure.

Now, being that we were probably the youngest table at the gala, my friends and I could not disappoint and like truly appropriate adults, we held champagne glasses like mics and asked each other “who are you wearing tonight?”  Between the jokes and the Vine-ing (what better opportunity for 6 second videos), we overloaded Instagram and I have news, we cleaned up well!

BCBG black off shoulder dress LLS MWOY Miami Gala Witte 2 BCBG black off shoulder dress LLS MWOY Miami Gala Witte

So, I wore a black, (obviously) slinky BCBG dress that I picked up at Sawgrass Mills Mall, BCBG Outlet.  I was prepared to drop anywhere from $100-200.  I walked into BCBG, the first stop that day, and was done in 30 minutes.  The dress was only $108 originally.  I paid $49, a 55% discount.  The necklace, I picked up at the Loehmann’s in Midtown.  It was originally $49, marked down to $29 with an additional in-store special 20% off, so I paid about $23.  I then pulled out my beautiful Rebecca Minkoff, Bombshell, nude leather (so soft) shoes that were originally $325 that I picked up awhile ago at a Gilt Warehouse sale for $75.

The total for my outfit would’ve been $482, I paid $147.  With that and the almost $10,000 raised – I feel like a winner.  Thank you everyone!!

Also, just found out you can still donate until June 30 through my campaign.  Think we can reach over $10,000?  Donate by clicking the image below.

xo Rae

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turquoise gold tjmaxx necklace

when in Rome, do as the Miamians do

You know how it goes, when you are searching for something, you can’t find it but when you really need something in particular – forget about it, not happening.  Well, I NEEDED a necklace to go with my dress (which will be featured here) I bought for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Champions of Hope Charity Gala, which was the finale event for my 10 week campaign to raise money for cancer research.  It needed to be fantastic.

This post is not about that necklace.  In the search (the struggle) to find something appropriate, I came across a bunch of other accessories that I really liked.  Versatility is always key but in this scavenger hunt, I realized I really didn’t have any casual-ish statement necklaces.

I picked up this turquoise and gold, Bangle Bangle necklace at TJ Maxx for $29.99 from $49, for about 40% off.  I wore it to a conference for work in downtown Miami.  As we know, I prefer to wear black… all the time.  However, while hurriedly packing, I ended with a bag full of bright (and forgot PJs).  Whatever I guess, it is Miami so, when in Rome…?

turquoise gold tjmaxx necklace

 

I really loved the necklace with the red skirt and although I cut them off, I wore nude patent leather heels.  I am admittedly, kind of proud of the amount of color I wore.  I may be getting the hang of this.

xo Rae

tresics blush pink tulip bottom dress

#noblacknothing

IMPOSSIBLE.  Or could it be?  I headed out on a Friday evening wearing no black.  Who am I?  In reality, I was a little unsure of where this night would take me.  I had plans but also had a big Saturday ahead of me and had a bunch of separate groups of friends in town.  My look needed to be versatile, by Miami standards, and I wasn’t staying out that late so I was aiming for something a smidgen more low-key.  That point seem to have gone out the window with this rather SERIOUS selfie, but provided the constant jumping between my friends’ hotel, SLS, FDR and back to SLS accompanied with some serious humidity and light rain we encountered, pics from throughout the evening were less than stellar.

tresics blush pink tulip bottom dress

I picked up this very versatile, blush/champagne Tresics dress with the other two at Loehmann’s also discounted from the original price of $46 down to $20, then with special spring promotional sales I paid $13.50, just like the other two.

This dress… two thumbs up with a wide eye emoji.  It was almost dangerously sexy with the South Beach breeze and tulip bottom but exactly like the other two – SUPER SOFT.  I definitely highly recommend Tresics dresses.

xo Rae

photo (31)

occasionally you have to wear clothes in Miami

Holy humidity.  What was I thinking with all the boots, jackets and non-summer clothes?  Well, I know what I was thinking and that’s neither here nor there.  All I know is it’s HOT and I am not ready for summer.  “It’s always summer in Miami,” no guys stop, give it up.  Summer is an ENTIRELY different level of sticky, hotness and it’s late this year.  Normally, by March we’re there.  Fortunately, we weren’t until this week when the 80% plus humidity settled in, the thunderstorms rolled through and a couple local friends wound up with sunburns.

As I attempted to merely put on clothes, not look nice, not look put together, simply not leave the house naked, I became very frustrated with my summer selection.  By frustrated and selection I mean… did I wear clothes last summer and if I did, where are they?  I know I said my friend told me people don’t wear clothes in Miami, but reality is, occasionally you have to.

After a stop at the new Loehmann’s earlier in the week when I really was in no mood to be shopping, I did catch that they were having a 25% spring sale promotion.  Goldmine.  Done.  I’m in there.

Now, I’ve already made it clear that I will buy duplicates (or more) in different colors if I love something.  I snagged two of these dresses, gray and salmon.  They feel like the most perfect, soft, stretchy, cottony dream I’ve had against my skin in a long time.  Like your favorite t-shirt or pjs for public.

photo (31)

Each of these Tresics dresses were  priced at $20 from $46, minus 25% for the sale with an additional 10% off the total for being a Loehmann’s member so before tax I paid $27 for both.

If there were more colors, I would’ve bought them.  They are so soft, versatile and AFFORDABLE.  Now, what else should I add to my summer wardrobe?

xo Rae

 

 

todd Jameson nue studio floor

I’ve never enjoyed waking up on a Saturday morning more

I kind of feel like I need to set the scene for this one.

10AM Saturday morning and the alarm is going off.  Dear God, why?  Right, I’m getting my hair done today.  And the alarm is so necessary because I opted against being designated driver and chose to enjoy some adult beverages.  I actually don’t think I am hungover but I sure don’t want to leave my bed.

Made it to Midtown, stopped in Acme Bakery, got myself a “Dark and Stormy”.  I can’t remember what it is but I can tell you it was good and rather appropriate for the monsoon that was about to take place.

First and foremost, as I walk in Prince is playing.  I have a very soft spot in my heart from a well-timed Prince song from some great nights spent boogying at Space 26 back home.  Once introduced to Karuna, my new stylist, I was offered coffee, water, whatever, my attention span was minimal as the rain started and Whitney Houston came through the speakers.  Karuna and I spoke about the color I was looking for, went through some pics of an old style I had and loved.  Looking back I probably seemed a little short but I was just in a little baby coma, taking in all the artwork (that’s all for sale) and other awesomeness  plastered on the walls and floor of the salon.  Then En Vogue comes on, followed by Ginuwine, Usher’s “You make me wanna” and Jagged Edge.  It’s about now I start texting my friends to recommend the salon and Karuna hasn’t even done anything to my hair yet.

selfie before red hair

Rewind.  Less than 10 days prior I was texting my girlfriends that are scattered between here and NY, “ombre or red?”  With mixed responses, I thought with my lack of desire to maintain roots, ombre was the way to go.  I started checking salons on Yelp.  Within maybe 3 days, my Gilt app notified me new deals were available.  Todd Jameson, Nue Studio Salon, a salon I was already considering, had a deal specifically for an ombre or full set of highlights for $107 from $225.  I think it took me all of 6 seconds to weigh this decision and press purchase in my Gilt City app.

gilt todd jameson miami

Ok, now my treatment is done, the shampoo girl doing her apprenticeship has put the 20/20 Experience and it is pouring, literal buckets outside.  I decided to have Karuna dry my hair anyways and commit to just chill until the rain lets up.  I am absolutely in love with the color so much so, I sent an inordinate amount of selfies.  So. Many. Selfies.  Here’s a little taste. Please excuse the sleepy eyes, Liv on a Friday night will do that to you.  Also, it’s copper highlights so it looks rather subtle in these pics.

selfie red hair no filter

Not only did I have a relaxing Saturday morning, I saved $118 or 52% on my treatment.  They also offer a 15% discount on products for any referrals, so make sure you tell them who told you – moi!  And finally, they also give you 30% off on your second visit.  Talk about customer service and retention, bravo Todd!  I had such a good experience I (someone who cuts/colors my hair maybe 2-3 times a year) was ready to set up my next appointment before leaving.

xo Rae

 

homies ny snapback reason clothing

they gave me a Reason

FINALLY!  Success.  About two weeks ago I mentioned I wanted a snap back hat.  Magically, last week, I received an email from Reason Clothing with free money in it.  No really, free money.  Man, I love genuinely free money, don’t you?  I also love deals in emails.  So, this genius email drove me straight to their site and boys and girls, this is how I acquired one of two snap backs in one weekend.  They gave me a really good Reason.

I received this email because I had purchased a t-shirt for my brother for Christmas and I would never unsubscribe from a company that sends so few emails and has such great stuff.  The deal was a secret (I’ll never tell, but only because they asked me not to) promo code for a $15 gift card.  Now that I was shopping for myself and not my brother, I went through a lot more of their inventory.  Personally, I think some parody type branding can be cheesy but Reason Clothing is amazing.  They’ve successfully made an edgy, witty (you like that, huh?)  line by choosing some serious brands to mock – dope.

I picked up the HOMIES hat, modeled after the Hermes logo.  The original price of the hat was $28.  I entered my promo code and the hat came down 54% to a ridiculous price of $13.  Given the shipping was a little steep, but you should expect to pay that with smaller boutique stores.  Who cares right, as long as my Homies love me?

homies reason clothing brand snapback

Now the other snapback that’s been all over my Instagram, well, let’s just say I was so excited waiting for the arrival of my hat, I needed a time killer or seat filler and may have wore it home Friday night by accident.  Fortunately, I’ve got it on long term loan until further notice.  Two hats are better than one anyway.

xo Rae

stussy shirt

don’t that look like what’s her name?

 

As I mentioned, about two weeks ago, there were a couple items I’ve been looking for with little success.  One being a hat.  I mentioned this Stussy snap back I was really interested in but didn’t end up pulling the trigger because it was too big for my head.  Then, last week, Urban Outfitters was having an online promotion for free shipping for 3 days.  I obviously opted to take advantage.

I always get online or walk into the stores and recognize I need some casual tees or comfortable tops (but only rad, comfortable tops), however I never come home with any.  While flipping through the Sale pages on my iPad, I came across a Stussy women’s shirt.  Now, I make fairly frequent trips to  both the UO located on the beach and in Aventura Mall, however this top was “online only”, meaning they didn’t even carry it in stores.  Hmm… and free shipping?  You follow where I am going here?

stussy shirt

At 50% off, this shirt came to $29.98 from $59.99 and it has already gotten some appropriate use.  Friday evening I managed to make my way home with a snap back hat, borrowed from a friend that is in town.  As it turned out to be a very late night, I manage to follow up with a very productive day.  When it came time to meet back up to watch the NCAA Final Four games and grab wings, I simply wanted to be comfortable.  So I threw on my new top, turned that snap back backwards and grabbed two of my all time favorites, my cutoffs and my combat boots, and headed to park it at an outside table to catch the game.  Upon my arrival, my friend took one look at his hat and to the rest of my ensemble and promptly asked, “that’s how you feel?”  To which I responded, “yes, exactly.”

I know I said I wanted to wear combat boots and body suits everyday but now I’m highly considering my other favorite option may be cutoffs and snap backs.  Good thing I already ordered one on Friday.

xo Rae

kelly anthony rachael

cheap thrills

Although, we’ll never know what we truly save when Macklemore-ing, I certainly love thrift shopping.  Mainly because I love having unique things that other people don’t take the time to search for and also because as much as I like nice brands, I like what I like and it doesn’t need to be drenched in LV logos.

As I was inevitably lost in my Twitter timeline last week, I came across my girlfriend Kelly bragging about some awesome vintage finds.  One of the first times I hung out with Kelly, we were both staying at a mutual friends’ in New York and realized that the contents of our suitcases were practically identical, all black, bodysuits, blazers, leathers, booties, we practically matched all weekend.  So once I saw that tweet I demanded she tell me what she got so I could put it on the blog.  She’s SUPER thrifty and did not just head into some vintage boutique where everything has been found, cleaned up and re-priced.

She got this amazing fur coat for $10 and the vintage Verdi luggage for $4 at the Salvation Army.

kelly vintage fur

kelly vintage luggage verdi

 

Then at Goodwill, she picked up this AMAZING black clutch  and small cross body, both perfect for going out for $3.  And I just came across some similar cross body, tiny bags on Karmaloop and Urban Outfitters online.

kelly vintage cross body kelly vintage snake skin envelope clutch

 

Shes good right?! She picked up everything in Manchester, CT and only spent $20.  Clearly, this takes patience but if your like Kelly or myself that’s half the fun.  I seriously can’t wait to kill a couple afternoons thrifting with her!

xo Rae

 

 

 

 

 

wood tavern

I can’t go for that, no… no can do

Actually, yes the hell I can.  Looking back on last Friday, I found that quote was the evening ending tweet after the Hall and Oates song finished, around midnight, as I walked out of one of my new favorite spots, Wood Tavern in Wynwood.

quote 3 wood tavern

Happy hour lasts until 8pm which automatically makes me more apt to return… frequently.  Due to my commute, I rarely make it anywhere to meet friends after work.  Conveniently, for my first time I made it there by about 6pm.  Upon walking in, the bartender informed us, EVERYTHING was half off.  So on this Friday evening with the temperature dropping into the very comfortable high 60s, I opted for the new Jack Daniel’s, Tennessee Honey and ginger ale.

In the lot behind the main bar strangers, friends and pets are all relaxing at picnic tables tattooed with writing and graffiti.  There’s another bar and the most perfect food stand featuring sliders, tacos and quesadillas.  By 7:45pm, as the sun was setting, my friend Val and I had ordered our quesadilla with mushrooms as someone announced they had “just ordered 14 sliders” and not to go anywhere.  I mean at $2 a piece, who am I am to turn down a little bite sized burger to go with my half a quesdilla?

quote 2 wood tavern quote 1 wood tavern

Although the fantastic happy hour prices ended by 8pm, I did not close my tab until about 9pm.  Each of my drinks were originally $8, which is nice by Miami standards but the reality of the situation is they only cost my $4 each making my tab $16 (plus tax).  I knew all of this in advance and it was still shocking to see such a low tab.  I saved 50% or $16 before tip.

Magically, somehow, I did not walk out of Wood Tavern, like I said earlier, until nearly midnight.  Most happy hours seem more like an opportunity to wind down, decompress, catch up, grab a bite and call it a night but at Wood Tavern last week, I had fun, a lot of fun.   Or,  I may or may not have just spent the entire time instagramming everything in sight.  Regardless, I definitely can go for more future Fridays at Wood.  And if anyone gets really ambitious they have their own version of Taco Tuesdays with free tacos.

F R E E T A C O S – next week, who’s down?

xo Rae

quote 4 wood tavern quote 5

summer in Miami

March Inventory

Miraculously, it appears as though I didn’t shop very much in March.  Well looks can be deceiving because I actually paid (GASP) full price for some awesome things I just had to have but that have no business being on this blog.  Oops.

I also attended the Syracuse v. Louisville game for free through an awesome hook up and some pretty cool Ultra/WMC parties but you already know that story too.  It’s all about networking and I can’t give up all my secrets.

Not to worry, though, I believe I am expecting some packages in the mail this week (two thumbs way up).

In the meantime, here is a short laundry list that sums up March but still doesn’t disappoint.

Purchase Original Actual
Matisse Studded cowboy boots $286 $48
60-pack of K-cups $39.99 $31.99
Carmar high-waisted black jeans $172 $70
Tahari black maxi skirt $80 $39.99
2 pairs of mens Levi’s jeans, 3 CK sweaters and BCBG dress $459 $50.28
MillyNY leather tote $465 $167
Lucca Couture crop $39.99 $15
Military jacket $172 $28
Club Level Hockey tickets for charity event $150 $50
BDG chambray button up shirt $59.99 $29.99
TOTAL $1,923 $530

My friends and I saved $1323 on nearly $2000 worth of stuff.  I initially suspected having saved less than normal but at about a 72% discount, March seems to be right in line with all the previous months.

Also, those Panther’s club level hockey tickets are still available and for this Sunday’s game.  I’d love to see you all there!

And here’s to a great start to Summer in Miami (cue Jim Jones track, circa 04/05).

xo Rae

summer in Miami