Tuesday, January 31, 2012

We Interrupt This Blogging...

I got up and dressed this morning so I could head out and do important stuff like get my husband's oil changed in his car and buy paper towel at Target.
As soon as I stepped outside I turned on my heel, walked back indoors, changed into sweats, called my girlfriend and headed over to Island Heights NJ to walk their charming little boardwalk and soak up temperatures in the mid 60's and perfect sunny skies. Island Heights is a quaint riverside town where antique Victorian mansions dot the waterfront and the most adorable homes line the streets. It a minute or two drive from our homes and our favorite place to walk on these gorgeous winter days we've been blessed with.
Besides, these photos I took on our walk today are much better than seeing me in the same old jeans again....

Monday, January 30, 2012

Valentine DIY

I love a good DIY project. It seems like nothing quite compares to the satisfaction you get from creating something lovely with your own two hands. After I unplugged from cyberspace on Friday I worked on a project I have been planning for the past couple of weeks. If you follow me on Instagram, then you saw the sneak peak and teaser about it that I sent out when it was finished.
Over Christmas 2010 one of my oldest blog friends Pamela over at Ginger Girl posted a DIY holiday decoration from one she saw at JCrew. After reading her post and picking my jaw up off the desk from my complete adoration of her craftiness, I rushed into JCrew to get a glimpse in real life. They had taken birch branches and suspended them with ribbon and hung gorgeous ornaments from them. I simply had to do it myself.
I have a large picture window nestled in a wall of built in bookshelves in my family room that made a perfect backdrop. I have always used it to create seasonal displays but had never thought of suspending something there! I purchased a birch branch at Michael's Arts & Crafts ($14.99), a roll of ribbon and used my own collection of oversize mercury glass kugels. Success! It created a striking display that received "oohs" and "ahhs" the entire holiday season.
Last autumn I decided to install small white hooks into the bookcase to create a more permanent place to utilize the branch as decor. When not in use, the small white hooks virtually disappear. For fall I used jute twine to suspend it and wrapped a autumnal leaf garland around it. You may remember from Halloween how I hung some creepy Spanish moss to add a delightfully devilish flair to my Mad Scientist's Library theme.

Over Christmas I wrapped an evergreen garland around it and hung a crystal star ornament from it to hang over my village. It looks like the Christmas star doesn't it?

I left the evergreen up until Friday when I set into motion my big plan. I am on a budget now that I am not working, and for a mere $5.00 I gathered my supplies at the dollar store.
1. pad of construction paper
2. a roll of cotton twine (jute is too curly)
3. 3 packs of plastic hearts
I originally wanted to use candy, but decorating with confections can get a bit pricey as they are so small and you need a larger quantity. Finding these plastic hearts was the perfect cost effective solution! Plus, I will have them to reinvent into something else next Valentine's Day!

I removed all the red and pink paper from the pad, folded each piece in half and fashioned hearts in all different sizes. It may be cheating, but I am NO artist and to freehand a heart would have been disastrously ugly! Using a hole puncher, I popped a hole into the center of each heart and strung them with the twine in an array of sizes. *note: I used invisible tape over each side to hold twine upright so they hung straight

I used an old wooden tray and filled my cloches (also used here and here) with the hearts. I purchased the red roses in the julep cup from Marshall's many, many years ago. I've joked about how my walk in attic is lined with metal shelving units and looks like a massive prop closet, but over the years I have collected odd pieces of decor, and tons of entertaining tools that I reuse and reinvent again and again. Look around your house. I bet you have some incredible things laying around waiting for a reinvention too!

Using what I already own and spending just a few dollars created a fun display that adds a freshness to our family room and puts a smile on my face every time I pull in the driveway and see them hanging there.
And St.Patrick's Day is just around the corner....

Friday, January 27, 2012

To Be Inspired

The computer does little to inspire me lately and yet I find myself wasting hours of each day sitting in front it.  I flit from website to website, email account to email account as if I am waiting for something amazing to magically appear. The next thing I know, I'm scrolling through Facebook looking up crushes from junior high generally aghast at how badly some people age and wondering how the cutest little boys can grow into some of the homeliest older men.
Certainly I draw inspiration from the blogs I read on a daily basis, but lately my reader hasn't been filling up as fast as it usually does. I couldn't even count on both hands how many bloggers let out a sigh of "TGIF!" in their posts this morning and lamented on how long this past week seemed. I agree. Perhaps we are all suffering from a case of the January doldrums. Except the Aussies who are reveling in summer glory down there in that perfect world they call Oz....but I'm not bitter...
I find I am most inspired when I am puttering around the house keeping busy. Folding wash, dusting and swiffering the floors are tasks that have me reaching for my notebook again and again as I rapidly scribble in a veritable downpour of  thoughts and ideas. Sometimes just the tumble of the dryer sets my brain in motion. Heading outdoors and riding my bike under endless skies with lungs bursting full of cold, crisp air is most times the only motivation I need. But this animated box in front of me? Not so much lately.
So excuse me while I power down for the weekend and live in the moment rather than cyberspace. I have an evening planned with some of the nearest and dearest to me in which we will be making homemade pizzas and drinking plenty of wine all while basking in the sheer pleasure of each other's company. Tomorrow I fully intend to inhale plenty of that cold, crisp air outside and savor every minute I have my husband and children home with me. Because if I take the time to do all of that, I'll be back here Monday full of the spark and motivation this past week was sorely missing.
Happy Weekending Everyone! 

chambray button up: jcrew
tee: gap
skirt: ny&co
tights and ring: limited
earrings: vintage, thrifted

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Born Too Late

As I was perusing through my blog roll, I read a post by one of my all time favorite bloggers that really got me thinking. Emily said that she feels she was born in the wrong era and I often feel the same way about myself. The only problem is, which era do I feel I should have been born in?
As a young girl, we somehow ended up having a crinoline from my aunt's wedding at our house. I spent many, many days pulling that thing on up to my shoulders and running about the house pretending I was Laura Ingalls Wilder. My afternoons were spent daydreaming of life in the early to mid 1800's as it seemed so ideal and simplistic to me. As I grew a bit older, I became infatuated with the Amish as that seemed a more realistic way to live out my petticoat dreams. I imagined marrying an Amish man and immersing myself in the lifestyle I so admired in the current day and age.
Once I hit junior high and the teen angst years, I longed to have been born a bit earlier so I could have lived in the 1970's London & New York punk rock scene. How cool it would have been to be there in the midst of the start of a movement I felt such a connection to. To be around during the antics of the Sex Pistols and the dawning of my favorite punk bands would have been amazing. To have hung out in places like CBGB's a decade or so earlier than I had the chance too would have been the coolest.
Now as a mother approaching my forties, I wish I had been an adult through the opulent '80s. I have such a fondness for the garish and decadent decor I still see lurking around thrift stores. I love classic center hall colonials because they simply feel like home. Big hair and big shoulders ~ was there anything small about the 80's? Spending my 7th-17th years in that decade left such a soft spot in my heart for it.
All this reminiscing just brings me back to the question of which era would have suited me best? As an adult, the low mortality rates and difficulty in just surviving daily makes the 1800's a bit less appealing. I am fascinated with all things surrounding the Crusades and to have been a Templar Knight sounds so romantic while I know in reality life was much more harsh than the 1800's. What if I had lived through those groundbreaking punk years? Would I have emerged unscathed or just been a lost soul like so many were? To have been an adult in the 1980's, would I have lost myself in the lust for excess?
As a firm believer that our destinies are already written somewhere, I know that I was fully meant to have been a small child through the 70's, an impressionable youth in the 80's in order to spend the 90's becoming what I am today: a mother.
Even with that reality and understanding, it is still nice to lose myself in the occasional daydream....

Do you think you were born in the wrong era?

shirt & belt: jcrew
dress: ny&co (old)
tights & sunglasses: express
vest: diy jean jacket, vintage, thrifted
bangles: jcrew, express, and random

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Cold Hard Truth

I'm stuck in a rut.
I'd love to pretend that everyday I am parading around town wear my finest vintage finds that I have amazingly paired with the hottest "on trend" items. But I would be lying.
Lately I find myself building outfits around sports bras. As in, "Can I pull this top off with a sports bra underneath?" Luckily, most days the answer is yes because I usually just pick a long sleeve t shirt and pair of yoga pants to accompany said sports bra.
I have been making jokes that my husband rarely sees me dressed anymore but it's really not a joke. I am in yoga pants or leggings when he leaves in the morning, and by the time he arrives home from work, I am right back in them again. If I am being totally honest, I am lucky to spend over 5 hours dressed in "real clothes" most days. And in another stretch of brutal honesty, I probably wouldn't even do that if I didn't have to pick my daughter up from school every single day. The thought of showing up in the school yard like that is the only thing that keeps me pulling one of the same three pairs of jeans on every day. Although, since I am giving you all full disclosure, I should admit that on days when I can't even muster up a smidgeon of desire to put on proper clothes, I arrive at my daughters school 35 minutes early to park in the pick up line because it generally assures me a spot right in front of the door and I don't even have to get out of the car. Geez. What is going on with me???
I am not sure how it has happened since I have never been like this in my life. This morning I stood in front of the closet staring into space. I pulled out 3 different pairs of pants (not jeans) then hung them all back up again. Stared at my jeans for a few more minutes then placed them back in the closet as well and threw on yoga pants, sneakers and a sweatshirt. Granted, I went for a long bike ride right after then came home and baked some cupcakes for the kids...but still. In fact, it is so gorgeous here today that I fully intend to walk to my daughter's school this afternoon dressed just like this. 
I surprise myself.
Maybe it's just a January thing. I've been feeling under the weather since Friday night and I would love to blame it on that, but it's been going on for a while now so I really can't. I know we all feels best in our comfort zone...but this is getting a bit ridiculous.

What do you wear when you can't muster up the desire to get dressed?

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Sparkles and Stilettos

I love this jacket.
I don't mean just a simple lowercase kind of love...I mean shout it from the rooftops and capitalize it kind of LOVE.
I discovered it while I was out thrifting and found all the amazing dresses that I have listed. It was buried in the dressy dress rack in a store that I find WAY overpriced and ridiculous (we're talking $150.00 coats in a thrift store that people wouldn't pay $150.00 for new and in a regular retail store) but check now and again because I do occasionally find a great item or two.
This was part of a set, and I have no clue if it came with a dress or a pantsuit...the other piece was long gone and this hung on the rack by itself with a $30.00 price tag. (Yes, I did chuckle out loud) I brought it to the counter and showed the nice woman who adjusted the price accordingly thank goodness. I didn't want to go home without it!
 I saw beyond the poly, and old school sequin trim knew that a plain white tee, skinny jeans and sky high heels could take it from retro-poly-housecoat-frump to night-on-the-town-fabulous. It's in the shop only because I have closets (note the plural) chock full of clothing and at what point do I need all these fabulous finds for myself?
Even though I'm really not going anywhere today, I may just keep it on long enough to go to school pick up this afternoon. Eat your hearts out Ugg Moms....

jacket: for sale here
tee: gap
jeans & earrings: express
heels: enzo angiolini
bracelet: charlotte russe (old)

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Coming Home

*I know I've already waxed poetic about my house many, many times. I actually wrote this months and months ago and just decided to share it with all of you

Every time we drove past the cedar shingled Cape Cod my mother would comment on it. Such a pretty little house, she would sometimes say. Other times she would sigh as she gazed out the driver's side window and softly murmur, I just love that house. We passed it often. Not daily, but enough to regularly trigger Mom's admiration for it.

The cedar shingled little house was across the street and a few blocks up from the home I grew up in. The childhood home that I left at 18, during the summer that I graduated high school. Perhaps it was spending a month abroad in a country whose language I could not speak that empowered me. Navigating the rail system on my own and taking a trip to the Alps with my mother's younger sister only strengthened my confidence. I arrived home to catch wind that some friends were renting a house together and they didn't have to ask me twice. I packed my bags and joined them.

One apartment led to another, then another. With each new apartment came new roommates. Faces were always changing at the end of every lease. Boyfriends came and went just the same, until an "old" one became a "new" one again and swept me off my feet. I followed him back to Europe where we backpacked the west of Ireland, and jetted off to cities like London and Reykjavik. We were grounded only when our duo became a trio and the newest man in our lives was too small to travel. Putting down roots became priority, so at twenty two, with a thousand dollars and a dream we became homeowners.

That first house was perfect for our little family. Recently renovated, it was 1,000 square feet of cozy comfort. Soft gray cedar shingles sided the once seasonal bungalow. It was nestled on a piney street where the homes had led prior lives as unheated, summer cabins for vacationers. Gorgeous dark wood beams supported the soaring ceilings and raw wood paneling planked the walls. A brick hearth enveloped an entire corner of the "great room" where an old fashioned wood stove stood proudly in the middle. We settled there very easily, in a small town quite removed from the larger municipalities in which we had always lived. It was a quaint and quiet waterfront place where we made a quaint and quiet life.

Life is always changing rapidly and after the first 5 years my little man and I found ourselves living there alone. What had once been so inviting and cozy had grown a bit colder and even the memories weren't enough to warm us. Then fate came along in the way of a good hearted man. He wanted nothing more than to scoop us up and away and turn the chapter in our lives to a new page where his adventures could be penciled in with our own.

The new chapter came to involve another cedar shingled home, a farmhouse, in another waterfront community. It was the childhood home of the man who had changed our hearts forever. We fell in love with his farmhouse as we had fallen in love with him. Within the first months of our new lives there, the three of us ran off and said "I do". Our family that had once contracted, now expanded and the newest version of life had begun.

It wasn't long before our little family became a wee bit bigger in the form of a bouncing baby girl. Within the first few years the once roomy house felt constricting and small. The neighborhood we once loved for its simplicity had started to become a little bit polluted. Home was not so homey anymore.

We packed the car and traveled far away with the dream of planting roots in new soil. We found a dreamy house but not in our dream location. We knew we needed to live by the sea so we headed east and discovered a place we knew could bring us joy. Arriving home and sharing this big news brought only sadness to our loved ones and we began to question whether or not we could leave them behind. Deciding to keep options open, we looked for a home back home.

I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw the real estate ad. "I know that house!" I thought as I picked up the phone to call our agent. The following day we pulled up in front and I knew deep inside at that very instant we had found home. I could see our family in the yard playing football. As I wandered from room to room I knew it was our family that would bring them to life again. I sat on the owner"s sofa in the family room peering out of the big picture window that is hung like a painting in a wall of built in bookshelves. The walls breathed the word. Home.

Today I walk the windy sidewalks I once walked and biked as a child. My daughter holds my hand as we chat the whole way to her elementary school. When I walk back alone, the air sometimes smells the same as it did when I was young. The birds chirp the same as they did over twenty years before. Sometimes the sky is even the exact same shades of blue. And when I see that cedar shingle Cape Cod appear in the distance, I can still hear my mother swoon, "Oh, I just love that house."

My house.
I finally made my way home again.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Vintage In A Modern Wardrobe: The Skirt Suit

The skirt suit. It's almost as obsolete as the pant suit nowadays isn't it?
We're such a casual society and thus the thrift stores are laden with racks of pant suits and skirt suits most of them in that old favorite, indestructible fabric: polyester.
Call me old fashioned, but I still religiously search through those racks when I am out and about. And you would be right in guessing that I rarely find that "diamond in the rough".

Then last week...the thrift gods smiled down on me and I found not only what may be called the most gorgeous skirt suit EVER, but quite possibly the best quality one too.
It took me 1.3 seconds to decide exactly how I would wear this suit...not together.
The suit is from Saks Fifth Avenue's house label. It is impeccably made, lined and weighs a ton. In fact the jacket can be worn as just that.
The grey skirt is a classic pencil design and I think we all know how to style a pencil skirt. But that jacket....oh, that jacket....

The jacket becomes the ideal layering piece over a simple turtleneck in a vibrant color. Dress pants would be an excellent alternative to the jeans and give the jacket a whole other look. The flexibility this jacket affords in styling options is almost unlimited.
Can you tell how in love I am with it?

This incredible suit is going into the shop tomorrow morning along with a bunch of amazing goodies...6 pairs of earrings, a leather skirt, a lace pencil skirt and a bevvy of gorgeous vintage dresses.
But this suit?
I wouldn't miss out on this if I was you!

jacket: vintage, saks fifth avenue (part of a suit set with a matching pencil skirt)
turtleneck: jcrew
jeans & fedora: express
boots & bag: coach
earrings: limited (old)

Age Is Not Always Relative

brother and my daughter

When it comes to family photos, I am like the Library of Congress. I have an entire cabinet of photo albums cataloging life from my childhood to present day. Since I am borderline OCD, each album is organized by time frame and by grabbing a single book, I can transport myself back to any moment in my life.

Over New Year's weekend my brother and his fiancee came for a visit from their home in western NY. At one point I walked into the family room and there he was, snuggled up with her on the couch going through album after album showing her what he looked like twenty some odd years ago. Going through old photos has some kind of magnetic pull, and next thing I knew, I was sucked right in to sitting there with them on this stroll down memory lane.

We were looking at pictures of a small family reunion we had back in the early 1990's, when my aunt and uncle had flown in from Germany to spend the summer stateside. As I commented on how young all the adults looked, my brother said, "They were probably the same age we are now."
At first I couldn't believe it, but then I remembered when I turned 37 in 2010 that my mother casually mentioned that it was when she was 37 that she and my father divorced. I was shocked when she said that because she just seemed....older than that. Now looking back at those pictures with my brother, I was once again finding it hard to fathom that our parents and my aunts and uncles were the same age we are today. The idea of it really boggles my mind.

I think it's because we are so much more active in our mid and late 30's than our parents ever were. My brother and I launched into a long discussion about how I, at 38, ice skate, snowboard, play tennis, regularly exercise and ride my bike. Both of my brothers continue to play hockey on leagues as they have since they were little boys. They both snowboard and bike as well. We have hiked and swam and had many, many flag football games together over the years. 
Since our parents never maintained an "athletic" lifestyle, I guess the theory of how one is raised is out of the question. Yet as I look at my children, I hope that they will always find a way to keep their bodies in motion and remain active in their middle years. And if I influenced that even in the slightest, I will be proud.

Do you find that people are just more youthful at later stages in life, or is acting "our age" really just in our heads?
*sidenote: I went to pick up my neighbor's daughter at her high school yesterday as she wasn't feeling well. When I walked into the nurses office they said to her, "Your sister's here to get you." Winning.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

And Then I Turned Into My Mother

If you follow me on Instagram (@shoppingcloset it is my iPhone Achilles Heel) then you have already seen my little collage of my childhood for the #janphotoaday challenge presented by that awesome Aussie blogger FatMumSlim. For each day in January you post a picture describing the listed "topic". It is fun, it is creative and I find myself looking forward to adding my two cents each morning.
Last night, my oldest girlfriend (we've been friends since we were 9) sent me a text that she had showed her daughters my childhood collage and they insisted that the picture of my mother holding me on the beach was really me holding my daughter. 
Crazy! Not a week before I posted a picture of us Skyping with mom on Instagram and my bestie Down Under commented how she sees a strong resemblance of me in my mother.
Could it be true???
I never thought I looked like Mom. In fact, people have always said that my sister looks like our mother, the older of my two brothers like my father, and my baby brother and myself most closely resemble each other. But goodness, I'm not complaining.
I've always reflected on how stylish "young" mom always was. In fact I blogged about it two years ago. I guess I just never saw a physical resemblance in myself. I always found our similarities through common interest.  The way I gravitate towards the classic and traditional elements. In the ways we both keep our homes. How I call my children by their first, middle and last names when they are in deep, deep trouble.

So what do you guys think?
Let's just settle this once and for all.
Have I turned into my mother?

mom was a 1st grade teacher before i came along

on her wedding day with my father

 the beach in Sandy Hook, NJ ~ feel free to "ooh" and "ahh" over the adorable baby. ;)

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Vintage In A Modern Wardrobe: The Sweater

I fell hard for this sweater when I stumbled upon it. I have a soft spot for the 80's, and with it's coloring and pattern, this sweater could have come directly from Mr. Cosby's closet itself. Big, bulky sweaters in crewneck form  are a favorite of mine (as witnessed most recently here) and the best ones seem to be vintage.
The question is, how do you balance big and bulky without looking like a rare breed of mohaired Sasquatch?
What if a pattern is involved? The whole idea could be borderline disastrous. 

I believe that big and bulky deserves slim and sexy. Opposites attract so keep it slim on the bottom. Of course throwing a sexy heel in the mix never hurts. Counteracting pattern with pattern keeps the top looking fresh and modern and I added the earrings so there would be a little sexy on top too. It's a little casual for a night look, but chic enough for lunch and shopping with the girls.

This sweater is in the shop and I'm surprised no one has snatched it up yet. Though I'm not sad no one has either....

sweater: vintage, thrifted paul harris
button up: ny & co (old)
jeans: those same old express ones i can't stop wearing
heels: bandolino (old)
clutch: banana republic (old)
sunglasses & earrings: express (old)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Raising Mr. Sophisticated

 Once or twice a week after work my husband loves to have a whiskey on the rocks. Lately I've been catching him drinking them in our Waterford rocks glasses. Over the New Year's holiday I noticed him serving up the Maker's Mark in the Waterford as well. I find it amusing to see him come from the bar cabinet in our formal living room with the delicate crystal in his hand instead of one of the many everyday rocks glasses we own.
Back in October he asked me why I had bought my baby brother the "nicest beer glasses ever" and why I never bought something like that for him. (They were a house warming/Christmas gift for he and his wife) I was shocked and delighted that he would even notice such a thing that I headed off to Pottery Barn within a week and made sure he got his very own set.

It may not sound strange to you, but these things regularly surprise me. Maybe because I'm talking about the guy who used to sleep over my house almost 12 years ago wearing shirts with so many holes in them I wondered why he bothered at all. A man who was a truck driver in our early years together and went back to school to become a graphic designer. He went from wearing a uniform he dirtied on a daily basis to crisply pressed button ups, dress pants and the occasional wool sweater. The fellow that has always cared less about luxe, yet whisked me away for our first vacation together and spent a fortune on a really nice hotel. Then, on his own, selected a platinum & diamond cocktail ring from the 1930's to propose with.
 Despite all his "sophisticated" changes, at heart he will always be the guy who still gets packages from his mother's rural mountainside home that are filled with petrified bugs and creatures she finds in the woods and is delighted by them.

He's changed a lot in the past 12 years, and so have I.  Deep inside I will always be the "city girl" with champagne taste and he will always be the "country boy" who seems to love a little luxury now and again. I wouldn't have it any other way.

vest, jeans & necklace: express (old)
turtleneck: talbots
boots: style & co
sunglasses: adrienne vittadini

Monday, January 9, 2012

It's A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood

We have been experiencing some gorgeous weather here on the East Coast. More than once temperatures have soared towards 70 degrees which is virtually unheard of in January. This past weekend was no exception. Saturday we hit 68 and when the mercury rises that high, I find it unacceptable to not be outside basking in Mother Natures little gift.
It used to drive me nuts when I worked retail and would be trapped inside a mall on such brilliant days. As people would filter in and out all day long I would find myself wondering why they had nothing better to do than go to the mall. Even worse were the days of inclement weather when I couldn't have paid people to leave the mall so the stores could close early and the employees could get home safely. Why can't people amuse themselves outdoors or even in their own homes?
Today's homes are more than well equipped with TV's, DVD's, and computers to keep people entertained. Whatever happened to simply reading a book? Or playing a board game? Or having friends over to just hang out? How about getting outside and talking a walk, riding a bike or even take a ride in your car through a scenic area?
I think in a lot of cases, people have forgotten how to entertain themselves. Imaginations have become obsolete because we have gadgets that can do almost anything for us. Children don't even need to flex their creative muscles much anymore because they have so many different video games and toys that take them into other worlds that were created by someone else's imagination.
My daughter is infatuated with these new Barbie sized dolls called Monster High. She has been collecting them for over a year and this Christmas she received a bunch more as well as their accessories. She has a wall in her room of cubbies that stored her books, movies, and toys. A few months ago she emptied them all out, donated most of her books (broke my heart) and sold most of her toys she no longer played with at the flea market in order to make "rooms" for her dolls.
Her little made up "rooms" are sweet, but my husband and I toyed with the idea of buying her a large wooden dollhouse  and furniture for Christmas that would fit her dolls and afford her more "realistic" play with them. Dollhouses like that do not come cheaply and I realized that I could most likely be selling it on Craig's List or at the flea market by next Christmas so why bother? Instead we went to our local arts and crafts store and bought her a pad of decorative scrapbooking paper and sheets of felt. A few weeks before Christmas she and I spent two afternoons "wallpapering" and making "beds" for the rooms. I must say they came out really cute and my daughter was tickled pink. 
Yesterday I was bringing some clean laundry into the kid's bedrooms and there she was playing with her dolls and their little "homes". She couldn't wait to show me a "desk" she had just fashioned for one of her dolls from an old cardboard shoe box. 
It was my turn to be tickled pink. It was sheer genius and I couldn't hide my awe over it. What a clever girl! She couldn't be happier or more satisfied than she is with her own creation and in turn has proven to me once again that less is usually way, way more.

sweater: vintage, thrifted
scarf: ? (old)
l/s tee shirt : jcrew
jeans: express
boots: style & co
sunglasses: banana republic