Monday, July 07, 2008

moving day...change those bookmarks!!

well, here's some of today, please come over and join us at the all new shoppingsmycardio!!!

for those who are kind enough to have us bookmarked or in their RSS, it's time to change both to:

best of all, we're celebrating by giving stuff away...and presents always make parties more fun! see you there!

Thursday, July 03, 2008

happy long weekend!

(sorry...sacrilege perhaps, but i so could not resist this picture. that's a wedding dress, by the case you were wondering.)

dear readers, i'm taking a much-needed long weekend to recharge. but, if the powers that be (ie, my darling hubs) smile upon us, i'll have a lovely surprise next week!

in lieu of my regularly eloquent posts (ha!), check out the new feature to your left (right there under those annoying ads that, sadly, pay the bills). i'll let you know whenever i find someone else's opinion out there in blogland utterly fantastic. happens more often than you'd think!

and if you're still hungry for more, jonathan adler came up with the best nod to patriotism i've heard lately...check it out here.

so, have a lovely weekend - rest much, drink much, and save the shopping for monday!


Wednesday, July 02, 2008

designer of the day: peggy li jewelry

for all of the time that i spend shopping (and trust me, it's a lot), i rarely come across a jewelry designer that gets me really excited. i see a lot of "oh, isn't that cute," or "if only i could afford that", but it's rare for me to really fall hard for a jewelry line. so when i find a designer whose pieces are stylish, well-made, unique, gorgeous, and affordable...well, i have to sing their praises.

the lovely peggy li is my latest find, and i couldn't be happier. all of her designs are delicate, stylish, impeccably made, and impossibly affordable.

i've been wearing her gorgeous 'diamonds in the rough' necklace nonstop since it arrived, and people literally stop me on the street when i'm wearing it. i adore the organic shape of those raw diamond beads, and their unusual chocolate brown color. and the chain is this impossibly lacy, delicate link chain...details i would expect from a truly high end designer. in a million years, you'd never guess it was only $65.

another piece i just love is her rudilated quartz spy pendant. it just looks like something you got in some fabulously overpriced antique store, or better yet, in the jewelry department at barney's. the chain has fabulous detailing, and the stone on that's just such a fantastic statement piece. oh, and did i mention you can order her necklaces in a range of lengths? just makes me love her even more!

and i was just coveting a pair of earrings almost exactly like these brushed gold ovals for an entire episode of gossip girl - how exciting to find them on peggy's site...for under $50! once again, the detail on these is what makes them really special. that gorgeous brushed gold detail, the wire wrap at the top to add texture - they're just perfect.

best of all, the designer is just about as sweet as can be - and i always love buying from designers that are still as involved in their product as she is. every piece is still made by hand, by her...and it shows.

head over to peggy's website, and i think you'll enjoy getting lost in her world as much i did!

deal of the day: regents secret

i know, the sample sale sites are everywhere now. but truth be told, i'm glad they're there...i get a little sick of bluefly being my only option for great deals on designers goods, and honestly, even they've been lagging lately.

regent's secret is the newest incarnation, and they have a style all their own. for my readers that eschew the more preppy, styles you can rely on from hautelook, and can't afford the high-end couture at gilt, even at sample sale prices, regent's secret offers sample sales for the cool kids.

this week, you can hook your other half up with some style at the frankie b. sale that starts tonight at midnight - i'm anxiously awaiting this opportunity to make my hubs even cuter than normal.

or, hang on to your wallet until monday, and pick up some of the darling, tattoo-inspired wares from SMET.

hold out even longer, and you'll be able to score some ultra-cool cavalli sunglasses on the 10th. that's the one i'm saving up for!

to get signed up, make sure you head over to regent's secret via the links here, and then you can just enter my email addy - shoppingsmycardio at - to bypass that whole 'invite-only' madness.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

SMC beauty buys: darphin redness relief serum

i always just hate trying things from darphin. they're fantastic to use, work exactly as promised, and it feels like such an indulgence every time i put on a darphin product. so, i get all addicted. and truth in advertising generally comes at a high price, i'm sorry to say.

so now, just in time for summer (aka, my face's nightmare season), darphin has introduced this amazing redness relief soothing serum. which, honestly and truly, does just that. i was seriously skeptical - my face is fairer than fair, with only its borderline rosacea to add a splash of color. but this serum is going a long way toward delivering that milky, luminous complexion i dream of one day possessing. it's totally soothing to apply, and has a lovely fragrance as well.

sigh...guess i'm stuck with another can't-live-without product from darphin. the world is so unfair.

if you're in the market for a new serum, or if redness on your face plagues you during warm weather like it does me, this is one of those times i think it's worth it to give in and splurge. and one thing i'll say about darphin is the products do last for months. so, you can use my trusty "cost per wear" justification here. handy little tool, isn't it?

deal of the day: yellow ruffle blouse

again with the juicy couture...i'm scaring myself a little. but gah, this top is so cute! and marked down 40% in the net-a-porter summer sale. it'll be darling with shorts this summer, and i can totally see this dressed up for work with a contrasting cardi and trouser jeans. nab it for $106 while you can. fab.u.lous.

Monday, June 30, 2008

deal of the day: gustto sample sale

i know at least one of you lovely readers was looking for "the perfect orange bag" for summer. i think this gustto just might be it - great summer size (holds your summer reading, your huge sunglass case, etc), the color is fantastic, and the price ($258) is definitely right if you snag it (or any of its lovely siblings) during the gilt groupe sample sale. it started this morning, so snap to it!

as always, if you need an invite, just email me - shoppingsmycardio at - and i'll take care of you!

site of the day: whimsy press

there is literally nothing i don't adore about whimsy press. from their completely gorgeous wrapping paper and notebooks to their tongue-in-cheek greeting cards, it was love at first sight.

honestly, there aren't enough places in the world where you can buy a card that says "sorry i fucked up." or, the fabulously punny "you crack me up", illustrated with a soft-boiled egg (yes, i realize that my sense of humor is right up there with your average second-grader). ah, so many goodies to choose from - i want one of each for my ever-growing card collection.

i've raved about their darling tote bags before, but now i'm on to something to put inside them. these gorgeous matchbook notepads ($8) are absolutely perfect for toting around - they have a surround cover that opens and closes like a giant matchbook, so no crumpled pages when it's shoved down at the bottom of your purse. and the prints are adorably retro and fun. my fave is palm beach, but paper invaders runs a very close second.

oh, and then there's the gift wrap - i get a little freaky-freaky with my gift wrapping (i secretly dream of a whole "gift wrapping station" in my house). whimsy's collection indulges every last one of my perfectionist impulses. the designs are so hip, the colors are so cheerful, and the quality is so exceptional that it's all i can do not to buy up their entire stock. i love all of them, but i have to admit that the 'best friends' set is my favorite - how could i resist those doggie silhouettes?

best of all, the fabulous people over at whimsy want all of you to get a chance to check out their goods, so they're offering a 20% sitewide discount to shoppingsmycardio readers! just use code CARDIO at checkout - but it's only good for 30 days, so stock up now!

head on over to whimsy press's website, which i guarantee will suck you in before you've even realized what's happened. happy shopping!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

etsy search of the day: "anemone"

since i love both the flower and the spiny sea creatures, i decided to see what would happen if i just searched for "anemone" on etsy...

anemone photo pendant, $35, adornjewelry

"an enemy or an anemone?" original photograph, $40, janeofalltrades.

not exactly an anemone, but so cool nonetheless. "charming creatures 12", $100, by lisa congdon.

and now i'm just completely digressing...because these are sea urchins, of course. this is what etsy does to you. sea urchin stationery, $9, by pixelimpress.

i sort of can't believe this amazingly detailed piece of glass is only 2" across. anemone gazing orb II, $95, by zenartglass

Friday, June 27, 2008

what i want today: r&y augousti clutch

i am just in love with this bag. i think it's because the designer started with a style that was so popular it's now almost overdone (the foldover clutch), and took it to a new level with the exotic skin and that fabulous deco zipper pull (trimmed in stingray, incidentally).

or maybe i love it because, yet again, augousti has the market cornered on affordable exotics. you can score this beauty for less than $500 - which is downright amazing, if you ask me.

if you're in the market, this clutch will make a fantastic addition to your bag stash - the styling is casual enough for jeans, but the exotic skin dresses it up for evening. pick it up at barneys, and make all of your friends jealous.

or, if you're looking for something a little more classic, barneys just restocked that gorgeous park clutch i've mentioned before. it's a much more traditional clutch option, but stunning nonetheless. and only $395...i honestly have no idea how r&y does it.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

what i want today: studded bangles

aren't these just lovely?? bangles really are all the rage this year, as are punk-inspired studs. but, in both cases, most of the styles out there are a little too predictably trendy for me.

so i was thrilled to find these lovely bangles from gorjana. they manage to incorporate both trends seamlessly...and tastefully. naturally, i couldn't resist - and it's all worked out beautifully. these have been a near-perfect addition to my jewelry wardrobe this season - i've worn them constantly since they arrived. individually, the style is delicate enough for everyday. but combined, the differing size and shape of the stud accents make these the perfect statement piece.

pick them up (separately, here and here) at gorjana's website - i love the yellow gold vermeil, but they're also available in silver. you're sure to get a lot of mileage out of either.

deal of the day: kate boutique

i'm losing steam on sale posts this week, but i couldn't resist sharing this one. kate boutique has just finished some serious spring markdowns that are well, well worth your browsing time. kate really emphasizes drape in absolutely everything she buys, and the results are exceptional - i can visualize myself wearing every piece in her store.

this cashmere turtleneck by inhabit retails for $350, but is marked down to $150.

or this delectable grey leather tote by abaco, marked down from $600 to $180. yes, really.

nearly every piece in the "sweater bin" has me swooning...i know it's not sweater weather yet, but i'll be so glad when it is, because i'll be cuddling up in this gorgeous cardigan by souchi and keeping toasty warm.

and if you're in the market for a fabulous leather jacket, well, i don't even know where to begin.


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

and one more....

because the sigerson sale has me obsessed, and because these amazing flats are just too pretty not to share. if i didn't have literally the exact same shade of gold in a tory burch reva flat, i'd snap these up in a new york minute. in fact, it's particularly distressing because...i like these better (shhh....).

deal(s) of the day: sale shoes - designer edition

i was spending a little too much time over at notcouture last night, and found there a number of deals much too lovely to keep to myself.

juicy couture continues to surprise me. if they keep this up, i'm going to have to stop mocking them entirely.

these sandals ($101) are a great way to bring a little ombre to your summer...and on sale, too. i love the yellow, but if you're feeling extra girly, pink is the perfect choice. nab either at bergdorf goodman, where you'll also get out tax-free (unless you live in NYC).

for a more understated style, i love these t-strap beca sandals from gryson. yellow and grey IS definitely the hottest color combo du jour, and these little flats make it clear why. nab them for $225 at funky lala.

and last, but certainly not least, more sigerson morrison love. these beauties ($145) are absolutely everything i've been looking for in a casual black flat - love the modern mary jane styling, the intricate detail on the strap, and that thick elastic around the top is going to keep these comfy in any weather. they're lovely in black, but that fabulous bright gold would be oh-so-fun too. decisions, decisions.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

what i want today: bloom tote by jessica jensen

lately, i'm really into bags that aren't from the big design houses - i'm craving style a little different from those that everyone else is carrying, and i love the attention to detail that you get from most of the smaller designers that comes without the hefty pricetag.

this ivory appliqued tote by jessica jensen is just what i'm after - the craftsmanship is amazing, i love the pink suede lining, and the lambskin exterior is stunning. this might just be the perfect warm-weather handbag. after all, how excited would you be to bring this out of the closet every spring?

pick it up for $758 from jessica jensen, but through the end of july, there's a lucky magazine code for 25% off. so, with code "luckybreaks7", you can take this beauty home for just under $570, putting it in the price range of a kooba or botkier - but i like this one so much more.

deal of the day: the elusive shopbop code

today only, kids, so jump to it - 20% off at some rules, of course - only on tops, bottoms and dresses (no shoes or bags, sadly), and not good on sale items.

but still, if you've been waiting for a little break to justify picking up a really fabulous tank or a lovely new summer dress, now's your chance. or, you could think of it as a sign that you're supposed to update that denim collection with something truly exceptional.

the code is HEATWAVE08, and i don't think they're kidding about it expiring at midnight (PST). post and let us know what you buy...i'm still trying to figure out how to maximize the benefit!

Monday, June 23, 2008

deal of the day: barneys spring sale

how could i have forgotten this most fabulous of spring occasions? so much to show, i'm just going to get right to business.

this pleated shell is an absolute must for the coming fall trends you'll be seeing. trust me: structure, sculptural detail...this piece has it all, and for under $200 (one of the challenges of an "impeccable tailoring" trend is the high pricetag of perfection). the neutral tone keeps it seasonless and really sets off the detail.

this tunic ($199) is the ultimate universally flattering piece. that raspberry color is fantastic on all skin tones, the belt creates a waist, and those wide kimono sleeves disguise any arm pudge. all in all, it's just about perfect.

true, this tee by splendid doesn't look exciting. but it's one of those rare and coveted closet staples you'll turn to time and again...and it's $39. so, you can afford to trust me on this one.

i absolutely loved this dress when it came out this spring - and i love it still. by vince, an old favorite of mine. love the ombre, love the twig print - this is just a gorgeous, effortless summer look...especially for $119.

and i had to include this silk daisy print dress ($279) just because i love the print so. that grey color is right on trend, and the pattern keeps it from fading into the background. darling for work or weekend.

last but not least, don't miss the denim. seven's classic "ginger" cut is on sale for $119, along with all sorts of other lovely denim options.

i could go on and on....but this is a sale worth exploring yourself. happy hunting!

Friday, June 20, 2008

fashion quandary: so near, and yet... far.

these fabienne boots had my eye the instant i saw them in j.crew's new pieces for fall. i had such high hopes that these were, in fact, the perfect fall boot - that elusive cool-weather staple.

alas, that black trim that was all set to make these the perfect fall boot has instead turned them into something sad...for that trim is not regular leather, but patent. i don't think that pulls these squarely into the realm of streetwalker...but it's not a positive thing.

what do you think? can you overlook the shine for the overall chic?

SMC gift guide: babies and the parents who love them

if you, like me, have several friends getting ready to spawn this year, you'll probably appreciate the fact that i've at least managed to do all of the baby shower-shopping for you.

check out the guide over at the daily obsession. (oh, and that pic above is a print by matte stephens called yaaka hula hickey perfect is that for a little boy? it's like where the wild things are meets the jetsons)

ooh, and while you're there - i keep forgetting to point out the fantastic contest going on there now! if you're in the market for a truly gorgeous handbag, the daily obsession has it up for grabs, gratis! don't forget to enter while you're there...the contest ends sunday!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

cheap thrills: summer skirt

we're long overdue for a cheap thrill, don't you think?

quick fashion confession: i hate shorts. sure, i have a couple of pairs lying around. but i just never love the way they fit. so, in the summer, it's skirts and dresses all the time. if nothing else, it's a good reminder to be more ladylike...nothing reminds you to cross your ankles and bend at the knees ;)

i find myself checking out the selection at skirt spot periodically, and wanting them to get just a bit more fashion-forward, because the style options are endless and the prices are fantastic. looks like they've finally granted my wish! i absolutely love this two-tone pleated skirt, and it's definitely a cheap thrill at $44.

alone, i realize it's as preppy as it gets, but bear with me. throw on a colored tank and a contrasting menswear vest, add a cute little sandal, and you've got a darling summer-friendly look.

just remember: this is one of those ensembles that gets its chic by mixing things up - keep it anything but matchy-matchy, and you're set!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

SMC how-to: the poor man's pedicure

it's hard to believe, but there was once a time i was completely convinced there was no reason to get a professional pedicure. thankfully, those days are well behind me - now, i'm about as high-maintenance as a girl can get.

however, the reality is that sometimes we need a little DIY action...maybe an event is coming up and you can't get to the spa, or maybe you just look down at your toes one day and realize you can't possibly leave your house wearing those gorgeous peep toes, because everyone will be doing just that...peeping at your less-than-perfect pedi.

fortunately, i've unearthed a few products that make the DIY version simple, seamless and - my favorite - quick.

first things first, the hardware: i just got the most perfect thing in the mail - it's a summer staple if there ever was one. it's a 10-piece pedicure kit from kiss that comes complete with literally everything you'll need for perfect summer toes. pumice stone, scrubber, clippers, cuticle pusher (the good, metal version) and nipper, buffer, and even toe separators for the polish. for $9.99 - seriously, that has to be the ultimate cheap thrill.

now, my pedi solution is cheap and dirty - after i remove my old polish, i just sand my toes down with a sugar scrub in the shower...that'll get you close enough, especially if you're not hunkering down for serious cuticle time. i happen to completely adore this version by airplus - and their foot lotion is literally the only thing that heals my heels after months of sandals.

i think everyone knows the sand/cut/file/buff routine, so i'm going to skip that and get to the polish. traditionalists will run for the OPI, and with good reason - i do love the staying power, and the colors are lovely. but i just tried out a new polish by bourjois that may have surpassed my OPI obsession. i love it because it's infused with vinyl, if you can imagine. translation: it dries superfast, and sticks without chipping like nobody's business. plus, what their color selection lacks in quantity, it makes up in quality. their rose vamp is the ultimate hot pink for hot days, and rose escarpin may just be the elusive 'perfect red'. definitely a toe must-buy.

so, start with some OPI nail envy, slap on that bourjois polish (remember the toe separators...that'll save oh-so-much time in touchups alone), and top it off with sally hansen's hard as nails, and you'll be sandal-worthy in no time!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

deal of the day: 25% off loeffler randall!

sigh. must they get more expensive every. single. season??

gorgeous nonetheless...and 25% off a new fall style is just about unheard of. i love that these shoes are having such a massive identity crisis that they'll end up going with everything. punk chic? sure. dressy business garb? why not. pencil skirt and ridiculously bright tights? definitely.

so, on sale, these beauties can grace your fall wardrobe for about $335...still heinously expensive for most of us, i realize. but i'm going to be coveting these every second until i own them, so there may be some wisdom to ending the torture now.

use code LOE25 to score this lovely deal from our friends at barefoot tess.

what i want today: stella!

is it possible? has stella mccartney finally ditched her crunchy, boho vibe in favor of something more sophisticated and upscale? i just got to check out a preview of her fall line, and i have to admit - i'm already calculating how many pints of plasma i'd have to sell to score any one of several pieces from the collection.

that gorgeous tweed coat ($2,195), for example - i think i could even suffer through the chills of winter with a smile if i had this to keep me warm. love the classic toggles, and the modern take on a tweed pattern...just fantastic.

or check out this stunning silk pleated dress ($1,595) - a definite nod to the more structured styles ahead for fall. i am just smitten. that gorgeous grey silk, the fabulous detail on the sleeves and

and then there's this beautiful green-and-black silk top ($1,095) that is just the statement-making piece i'm dying for this fall. for those of you that were loving the ombre trend we talked about last week, this takes it to a whole new level. the technique is called dégradé, and gives you the feel of ombre while incorporating multiple colors. don't say i never taught you anything ;)

i'm thrilled to see such gorgeous things coming out of mccartney's line this fall - here's hoping it only goes up from here!

Monday, June 16, 2008

haute or horrid? marc jacobs mouse flats

i've always loved the marc jacobs mouse flats...but i'm starting to think i've outgrown them. i think i love them for my 20-year-old self...not so much for my 30-year-old self, who i'm pretty sure can't pull them off any more than she can successfully pull these off.

but then, my 20-year-old self was so not buying $250 shoes. so, what do you all the price point proof enough that these are cute for grown-ups, or are they still a little too "reclaiming my youth"?

fortunately, i'm not completely out of luck. i can definitely pull off these lovely suede boots, which are high on my list for fall. as are these gorgeous navy and salmon heels, which have that 1940s vibe i so love.

hurray for piperlime starting to carry great shoes like marc by's about time i had an option other than zappos (who i'm boycotting ever since they suspended their free overnight shipping).