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Shen Dove Style: July 2011

Friday, July 29, 2011


Outfit Post 7-29-11
Dress: Francesca's; Belt: UO; Shoes: Target; Bag: thrifted; Earrings: gifted

Happy Friday friends! It's feels a bit funny to be back to regular outfit of the day photos.  I still am tempted to reach for the same items I've been wearing for the 30 for 30 because they really are favorites.  I did relax my no-shopping ban recently and got this dress from Francesca's.  I think this dress has a lot of remix potential for the fall which I guess makes sense since summer is quickly winding down.

Outfit 7-29-11

I wore a slight variation of this outfit earlier this week when I attended a DCFABB event at Carbon DC.  I took very few photos, but Elizabeth of So Much to Smile About did a great recap of the event.  It was nice to meet some stylish ladies in the local area in person!


Thursday, July 28, 2011

Summer 30 for 30 Recap

30 for 30 Final Roundup


Tuesday, July 26, 2011


30 of 30
Top: c/o Land's End Canvas via Lucky; Skirt: UO; Shoes: Calvin Klein; Clutch: Loft; Faux glasses: UO; 
Watch: Francesca's; Necklace: Eastern Market vendor

I find participating in the 30 for 30 to be a fun exercise in being creative with items I already own.  I'm not really tired of any of my 30 for 30 items at this point because I chose items I really love wearing, but I'm happy to have free reign on my whole closet again.  Stay tuned for a final round-up!

0utfit 7-26-11

I read each comment I receive and really appreciate the lovely ladies that take the time to comment on my blog.  Thanks for reading!

Currently Reading: The Art of Choosing by Sheena Iyangar
Currently Listening to "Back to Black" by Amy Winehouse (RIP)

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Monday, July 25, 2011

Black, White and Tan

29 of 30
Top: H&M; Skirt: Loft; Shoes: Target; Scarf: gifted; Bag: gifted; Sunnies: Target

Hi Friends!  Hope you had a lovely weekend!

I believe that most Monday's call for uncomplicated outfits.  I feel it's the best way to start the week off right so energy can be focused on making the week a great one.


This is as close to layering as I'll get for a while, but I liked the way this scarf looked with my basic black and white outfit.


On another note, check out this recent feature Fajr of Stylish Thought was kind enough to write about me and a recent guest post I did for Alex of Delayed Missives during her vacation.

Happy Monday!

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Saturday, July 23, 2011

Maxi Casual

28 of 30
Denim Shirt: Charlotte Russe; Dress: Mod Cloth; Shoes: Jessica Simpson; Clutch: vintage

I know I'm stating the obvious but this heat we're experiencing across the Eastern U.S. seaboard is the most!  This maxi dress happens to be quite comfortable and light weight, so it seemed like the best option to wear for this heat.  I'm so happy I included it in my 30 for 30 items.



(Try to) stay cool!

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Friday, July 22, 2011


27 of 30
Top: Nordstrom; Skirt: UO; Shoes: Target; Necklace: H&M; Clutch (purchased in Bahamas)

I’m feeling wordy today, so here are a few random Shen thoughts:

  • As an avid book reader, I’m mourning the loss of Border’s but I’ve contributed to its demise like everyone else. I've limited my book purchases and opted for my local library and Paperback Swap instead. When I do buy books, I typically get them used from Amazon. Will museums have photos of bookstores (and music stores) to remind future generations of things from past eras?
  • On a related note, I’m still holding out on buying a book reader though it would get a lot of use because I think it would lead to more book purchases. More book purchases would take away from my clothing budget…nice to see that I have my priorities in order.
  • Wonder if anyone else is excited about the come-back of 90’s Nikelodeon kids programming on TeenNick on Mondays from 12 a.m. to 4 a.m. As most children of the 80s and 90s, I have fond memories of watching shows like Clarissa Explains It All, Doug and All That. The time period that the shows are running is not ideal for most working adults, but it will be nice to revisit them during my occasional night owl moments.


  • I'm wondering if I should invest more of the considerable amount of time I spend on social media networks using Google +. Anyone else planning to be a frequent user? Having blog friends to connect with on there might make it worth while…
  • One of my favorite summer beverages is Iced Coffee which I was reminded of after reading this article. I prefer my tea hot and my coffee cold in the summer, I don’t know why.
  • I’ve purposely been avoiding looking at fall trends and lookbooks, but guess it’s time to start thinking about what I’d like to add to my wish lists for the fall.
  • I hope to see this documentary at some point over the weekend. I love this group and often play their music on my headphones during the work day.


What random thoughts are on your mind today?

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Thursday, July 21, 2011

Style Profile: Chic on the Cheap

Chic on the Cheap
Photos: Courtesy of Lydia of Chic on the Cheap

For this edition of Shen Style Profiles, Lydia of the lovely blog, Chic on the Cheap was kind enough to answer some questions.  LyddieGal has a great eye for creating stylish, affordable looks.  She is also a great photographer and her self-taken photos always look fantastic.  So let's get down to the questions!

Shen Dove: What inspired you to start your blog and how did you come up with the title?

Lydia: I was just looking for a creative outlet to write and keep a bit of a journal. I never expected people to actually read it -- and now I wish I'd put a little more thought into the name, and come up with something more unique. But I'm the top google hit now, so there is no changing it!

Shen Dove: How would you describe your personal style? Is it influenced by your career/job?

Lydia: My style is a mix of classic and quirky, I like bold colors and I try to find classic and flattering cuts. My job is at a pretty causal office, so I can get away with a lot of things more conservative offices might not allow. I like that I can dress as creatively as I please at work!

Shen Dove: How has the city/town you live in influenced your style?

Lydia: I live in a pretty small town, it's not hard to be the best dressed person in a room at any given time.  It might be nice to live in a fashion mecca, and see everyone else walking the streets looking their best. Last time I visited NYC I saw a girl wearing the most amazing turquoise boots and this perfect camel trench, and I recall thinking her outfit made mine look like I was just slumming it.

Shen Dove: It seems like summer just started, but fall will be here before you know it! How do you plan to transition your favorite summer items into the fall?

Lydia: Do I have to think about fall already?! Summer is by far my favorite season and it always goes way too quick. I will definitely be wearing some of my shorts with boots and blazers for as many weekends as the fickle fall weather will allow, and I just got a pair of red jeans, that will transition perfectly with some cozy knits and knee high boots.

Style Profile - Chic on the Cheap 4

Shen Dove: Looking your best doesn't necessarily mean spending your entire paycheck; how do you manage to remain so stylish yet also be conscious of spending? Do you have any tips to share?

Lydia: Usually when I walk into a store, I got straight to the sale rack. Most times I won't even bother tormenting myself with the full priced merchandise. It will all go on sale eventually!  When it comes to shoes, shop around, and shop online. Many places carry the same shoes and you never know who is going to have the best price. Amazon is great and usually unbeatable, but Piperlime's sales are really awesome + they have free shipping and returns! Modcloth changes the names of their shoes to whatever cute thing they can think of, but if you can see the brand in the photo, you can google it, and chances are you can find it for much less elsewhere.

Shen Dove: You are so great at making and altering your own clothing! Do you have any tips for ladies that would like to do the same?

Lydia: You need a lot of patience, and a willingness to let yourself make mistakes. You need a full length mirror and a pile of straight pins. Also a seam ripper. When it comes to alterations, you've just got to put it on and start pining. It's got to be on you if it is going to fit you, so that is where the mirror comes in. If it is something you picked up at the thrift store, just remind yourself you only paid a couple dollars for it and if you ruin it, at least you've gained experience.  Alterations seem really intimidating at first, but take the time to study how the garment was constructed, and you can easily see where the changes need to be made.

Shen Dove: What do you enjoy most about blogging about style and fashion?

Lydia: I love that it has motivated me to take photos everyday, and to help me improve my camera skills so much! Photography is something I've loved for a while, and it was always a bit of a pipe dream to be a fashion photographer. So now, in my own way, I am.

Shen Dove: Do you have any personal style rules you live by? If so, what are they?

Lydia: I used to have a whole bunch of rules about how I couldn't wear horizontal stripes, or I couldn't wear yellow, or I couldn't wear heels over two inches. But I've abandoned them all.  My only rule now is to wear clothes that make me feel gorgeous.

Style Profile - Chic on the Cheap 2

Shen Dove: Thanks for the interview Lydia!  Be sure to bookmark Chic on the Cheap to see more of Lydia's great style!


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Pack Light

26 of 30
Top:  Nordstrom (junior's dept); Jeans: UO; Shoes: Target; Bag: vintage; Sunnies: Target

Maybe it's a good thing that I have been gravitating to clutches lately.  I practically had to empty out my whole purse yesterday (my work purse, not the clutch pictured) to find my keys...smh.  I obviously carry around too much stuff.


I'm not sure what I was thinking including jeans in my 30 for 30 items during a
hot and muggy DC summer, but I'm determined to wear them at least this one time (I spend most days in chilly air conditioned buildings anyway).


Happy Wednesday!

Currently listening to: Bag Lady by Erykah Badu

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Monday, July 18, 2011

Sparkle and Chambray

25 of 30
Tank: Charlotte Russe; Skirt: UO; Belt: UO; Shoes: Nine West; Bag: gift; Earrings: H&M

 This outfit was made possible by just grabbing the first clean (30 for 30) items I put my hands on because it was too hot to put much thought into deciding what to wear.  I'm sure we're all familiar with those days. 


I know I've been wearing the heck out of these shoes lately, but they are still my favs so I hope you'll forgive me.


Happy Monday (stay cool)!

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Saturday, July 16, 2011

Book Review: Super Rich: A Guide to Having it All

I’ve always loved books (and bring up what I'm reading pretty regularly).  I also truly enjoy discussing what I'm reading.  So it's only fair that I share my views about some of the books I've read here.  I recently finished reading Super Rich: A Guide to Having it All by Russell Simmons. The book title may be a bit misleading because it’s not a prescriptive book on how to get rich quick. Super Rich is really based on the premise that finding peace and happiness in what you're doing being the path to prosperity.

Reading Super Rich was kind of like watching an episode of Oprah’s Masterclass show on the OWN network, with Simmons outlining his personal evolution and his views on success and fulfillment. In the book, Simmons talks about his evolution from a kid from Hollis, Queens that developed his passion for Hip-Hop into a career as Def Jam Records founder/Hip-Hop culture icon, businessman, social media influencer, clothing designer, meditation/yoga enthusiast and philanthropist.

One of my favorite parts of the book was a description of when a recent college graduate approached Simmons and tells him that he wants to be an actor in Hollywood. Simmons tells the young man to stop being a baby (he actually uses stronger language than this but you get the point) and to take the next bus to L.A., get any job that he can and work/hustle as hard as he can until he reaches his goal. The next time Simmons sees the young man, he has “hustled” his way into an exclusive party. By this time, the young man has networked with people in the entertainment industry and started receiving acting opportunities. How inspiring is that!  The idea that hard work and a "hustle mentality" can get you places in life isn't new, but I found it interesting to hear the Russell Simmons perspective on success.

In Super Rich, Simmons explains that while monetary wealth can bring a lot about fun toys and opportunities, true happiness does not come from the things you own. Simmons talks in detail about how yoga, mediation and veganism have influenced his life. I have very little knowledge on these subjects and found Simmon's descriptions of basic tenets of yoga and meditation interesting. Even if you aren't interested in yoga and meditation, I think this is a great book for any young person interested in harnessing their passion for success and personal fulfillment into reality. The main take-away from this book for me was encouragement to go after your dreams, wealth and abundance will follow.

Have you read any enlightening/inspiring books lately?


Thursday, July 14, 2011

Dash of Orange

24 of 30
Shirt: H&M; Skirt: Target; Shoes: Nine West; Sunnies: Target; Scarf: thrifted; 
Clutch: purchased in the Bahamas

So the truth is, I only donned this hat for outfit photos, because I feel a little odd wearing a hat on a weekday.  Hats signify weekends for me because I don't wear them to work.  I think hats definitely push the business casual dress code of my office.


I also thought adding an accessory would relieve the 30 for 30 fatigue I'm now experiencing as I approach the end of this round of the challenge.  I'm ready to do a little late summer shopping and revisit some favorite items that haven't been worn in the past few weeks. Can anyone else participating in the challenge relate?


On another note, I'm a bit behind in commenting this week, so please bear with me! I'll catch up soon.

Hope your week is going well!

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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Natural Mood Enhancer

23 of 30
Cardi: Nordstrom (junior's); Dress: Mod Cloth; Belt: H&M; Shoes: Calvin Klein via Marshalls; 
Bag: thrifted

I love bright colors, but yellow is truly a favorite.  Wearing yellow instantly brightens my mood and always adds visual interest when worn with neutral and bold colors alike.  


According to color theory, yellow is associated with joy, happiness, intellect, and energy.  So the next time you want to channel any of those feelings, put on your favorite shade of yellow and greet the world with a smile.  It works for me!


Yellow | Everybody, Everywear

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Monday, July 11, 2011

Black and White

22 of 30
Top: H&M; Skirt: UO; Shoes: Nine West; Headband: Claire's; Clutch: Loft;
Necklace: Claire's; Earrings: purchased in Mexico; Bracelets: H&M; Sunnies: H&M

I rarely remember to wear headbands, but this one coordinated so well, I couldn't resist.  I used to wear head scarves and wraps much more often, I need to remember to wear them more.

Update: I didn't realize how popular black and white stripes were this summer.



Here's to a positive, productive week!

Currently Reading: Normal Gets You Nowhere by Kelly Cutrone

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Saturday, July 9, 2011


 21 of 30
Blazer: Delia's (old); Tank: Charlotte Russe; Shorts: UO; 
Shoes: Jessica Simpson; Sunnies: Target; Clutch: purchased in Bahamas; Jewelry: H&M/Jess LC

I realized earlier that I was 20 outfits into the 30 for 30 and I hadn't yet worn this tank.  I decided that I had to remedy that oversight immediately.  


Sparkles make any day (especially a Saturday) better!


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Friday, July 8, 2011

Red Revisited

20 of 30
Top: H&M; Skirt: Loft (old); Shoes: Nine West; Bag: thrifted; Belt: ? ; 
Necklace worn as Bracelet: ?; Earrings: purchased in Mexico

Happy Friday friends!  Looking back at my outfits over the past few weeks, I realize how much red I've been wearing lately. When I'm ready to add things to my wardrobe, I'll keep in mind that I have several red pieces and stick to other colors.


Thanks for yesterday's recommendations on nail polish colors.  I have the feeling my search for nail polishes in coral and yellow won't last much longer.  Have a lovely weekend!

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Thursday, July 7, 2011

Coral and Yellow

19 of 30
Dress: UO; Shoes: Nine West; Bag: thrifted; Earrings: gifted; Necklace: Jess LC; 
Bracelets: H&M; Bag: thrifted

I'm currently on the hunt for a nail polish that is the exact color of my dress.  Now that I think of it, yellow would be a fun nail polish color to wear as well...


Currently Reading: Super Rich by Russell Simmons

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Currently Wishing for... a timeless gold watch

Currently Wishing for - Timeless Gold Watch

  1. Juicy Couture Gold Watch
  2. Lacoste Watch, Women's Palma Goldtone Stainless Steel Bracelet
  3. Michael Kors Round Watch, Golden
  4. Marc by Marc Jacobs Henry Colored Crystal Bracelet Watch
  5. DKNY Gold Polished Roundface with Matte Metallic Dial
  6. Citizens Ladies Wrist Watch

For the past several years, my cell phone has served as my watch. I think the last time I actually bought a watch was in high school...But it would be nice to add a timeless gold watch to my collection and also to be a little less reliant on my cell phone to tell time.

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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Red, White and Blue

18 of 30
Top: Charlotte Russe; Skirt: UO; Shoes: Calvin Klein via Marshall's; 
Clutch: ? purchased in San Francisco; Jewelry: H&M

I'm a day late, but this is what I wore on the 4th of July. I hope that those that had yesterday off had a great long weekend and those that didn't have the extra day off, had a low stress Monday!



Here's to a positive, productive week!

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Monday, July 4, 2011

Summer 30 for 30 Half-way Point Round-up

Summer 30 for 30 _ 1-15 Round-up

The first half of the challenge is always the easier portion, but I think I still have a few more remixes in me with my 30 for 30 items!


Saturday, July 2, 2011

Adventures in Jewelry Making

17 of 30 bw with text
Top: H&M; Skirt: UO; Necklace: self-made (materials c/o Michael's); Bag: thrifted; 
Sandals: Jessica Simpson via Dillard's

Holy wrinkled skirt!  I had no idea I walked out of the house so wrinkled until I looked at this photo...oh well.  I don't care much for ironing and removing wrinkles in clothing is a bit beyond my current Photoshop skills. Forgive me!

On another note, I was given a giftcard from Michael's and purchased materials to create my first piece of jewelry,  it's been a goal this year to try to explore my crafty side, so this turned out to be a fun project and timely project!  Here is a synopsis of how I made the necklace:

DIY Necklace

If you'd like to explore your own crafty side, use this code to pick up materials to create your own statement piece this summer.


Note: I received a $50 Michael's giftcard to purchase the materials to create my necklace.  I chose to write about this project because I thought it would interest my readers and will always make an effort to be transparent about any items or materials I receive.

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