Mon, 15 January 2018
~The Simple Sophisticate, episode #191
Quality Leather Totes
Hi Shannon - I was going through your capsule wardrobe pieces and I saw the mark and graham brooklyn tote and the cuyana tote listed. I have been looking for a cognac purse and have seen both of these before (in addition to madewell and everlane). Do you have any experience with either brand and/or tote?
Thanks so much!
~The Vintage Tote Bag
, by WP + Standards, $195 (monogram available), ships for free in the U.S. if order is over $75
~Able, Mamuye Leather Tote
(more colors available), learn more about the company founded on the mission of being "a lifestyle brand focused on ending generational poverty by working with women who have often overcome extraordinary circumstances. We manufacture directly in the communities we wish to impact, both locally and globally, creating jobs and ending the cycle of charity dependency" here
SHOP THE OPTIONS:
How to Know Which Quality Clothing Items to Invest In
I am currently binge listening to the podcasts for the umpteenth time and you speak to quality over quantity frequently, with which I completely agree. However, how is one to determine what brands/items are quality without having to spend a fortune playing trial and error... Thanks so much in advance! Keep up the awesome work, I look forward to every post and podcast! —Jennifer
Follow these tips:
- Check the label
- While not in every scenario is paying more money equivalent to a quality item, often it is. However, do your due diligence, and following the below four steps as well to ease your mind if you are new to a particular designer.
- Try it on, feel the fabric, check seams, and see how it has been made.
- Natural fabrics such as cotton, silk, linen and wool will last longer than synthetic fabrics; however, even natural products can be diluted - check the fiber quality and density - feel it. The more fiber, the longer it will last.
- Look at the buttons and buttonholes: is the stitching tight? This is a good thing. If there are loose threads, this is a bad sign.
- Clothing with lining is normally a very good sign, just make sure to check the seams.
- Interfacing in collars and cuffs is a good sign as well as it creates the intended structure, but also takes more time and money to construct.
- Look to experts in the field you trust - stylists, designers, bloggers, fashion columnists, critics
- Have patience. You may have to try on more than a few different brands to find one that not only is top quality but works well on your body type and is to your taste.
- Don't be afraid to return the item if it just doesn't feel right for you.
~How to Find Your Signature Style ~The Perfect Trench is Personal
Simple Seasonal Eating for a Busy Schedule
I have to be at work by 7:30 am every day and don't get home until 5:30 pm or later. So there's not much energy left to get up early to cook breakfast or spend a couple of hours in the kitchen cooking dinner. I don't mind spending maybe an hour cooking dinner and cooking enough so I could eat it for lunch or supper another time during the week.
I love the idea of eating with the seasons like you've mentioned. Can you recommend any books, cookbooks, etc. that might have sample menus and simple recipes so you can eat whatever is in season at the moment but use easily found ingredients and the recipes don't require you to be a trained chef spending most of the day in the kitchen? I've tried to come up with my own menus but haven't had much success and found it exhausting. Any recommendations you can give me is greatly appreciated.
Thanks for all you do!
- Capsule Menu Details and Seasonal Menus
- The latest seasonal menu, Winter - download for free here.
- Simple go-to weeknight dinners for a busy schedule:
- Goal: A protein, a low-starch vegetable (prepared in a simple manner roasted, steamed, etc.), and a side of whole grains (brown rice, forbidden rice, quinoa, couscous, barley, etc.)
- EX: a single salmon fillet pan-fried seasoned with salt and pepper, roasted broccoli with extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper, and black rice (forbidden rice).
- EX: Lunch or simple and done dinners: Salad greens (baby spinach or arugula), topped with homemade vinaigrette, tossed with a grilled protein - fish, chicken, lean beef, etc., added roasted sliced almonds, walnuts or pine nuts, and a tablespoon of freshly grated cheese.
- How to Feed Your Body Well
- How to Enjoy Eating Every Day and Love the Results, episode #165 - seasonal cookbooks are listed on point #10
- My homemade vinaigrette recipe:
- 1 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- View all of TSLL Recipes here
What to Pack for a Trip to Paris in the Spring
I am going to Paris this spring for a few weeks and I don’t want to sacrifice style for comfort and good sense. What would you recommend wearing to walk and walk and enjoy the trip without looking like a tourist and keeping my sense of style intact? What shoes to wear!? Handbag? Jewelry?
Any thoughts would be so much appreciated.
Jen from So. California
- Classic trench (versatile for day and evening) - J.Crew's Icon Trench
- Flat shoes - slip-ons with a rubber sole such as Aerosoles
- Crossbody bag - investment: Mansur Gavriel (pink or black), mid-range: Furla
- Tote (see the first question above)
- Minimal jewelry - a favorite necklace - a pendant perhaps, small/medium hoops or studs (above - Anthropologie), watch, a favorite ring
- Light, long-sleeve layers - a fine-knit cashmere sweater - perhaps Eric Bombard (the bi-annual sale is currently on)
- A blazer for warmer days worn over silk blouses or camisoles - Theory is my trusted blazer choice
- A beloved scarf - print or solid depending upon the rest of your travel wardrobe - Fendi option above
- 1-2 Pants/jeans and/or 1-2 skirts Ankle skinny- /straight dark denim is my go-to
- One classic, functional dress for dinner, but could work for day - a black shift (above) by Malene Birger or a midi length long-sleeve option from Raoul
SHOP THE OPTIONS BELOW: [show_shopthepost_widget id="2988959"] ~SIMILAR EPISODES/POSTS YOU MAY ENJOY:
~Ask Shannon Episode of 2017, episode #163
~How to Cultivate Your Style All Year Long, episode #149
~International Travel Prep List, episode #183
- takes fewer than 5 minutes
- exercise for the brain
- timed to challenge yourself
- current and historical references
Download the Episode
Direct download: 191AskShannon2018.mp3
-- posted at: 1:00am PDT