July 29, 2010

Handbag Swoon? - "Jenna" by Urth Bags

Constructed with recycled magazines and bearing a shape similar to that of a Birkin bag, the "Jenna" by Urth Bags has to be the most stylish eco-friendly handbag I've seen.

However, I'm not really sure if I want to carry something that bears resemblance to one of the most coveted bags in history, unless it is THE bag.

What do you think? Too much like the Birkin? Or funky and different enough to be carried without insulting Hermes?

Click here to check out more eco-chic handbags by Urth Bags.


July 24, 2010

Misikko Hana Elite Flat Iron Winner Announced

Hello readers!

First, let me start by saying that I truly enjoyed reading EVERYONE's comments on the Misikko Hana Elite giveaway post. I, honestly, wish I could give everyone a flat iron. Many of the comments made me laugh but others made me realize just how hard it is to find a great flat iron at a decent price.

*raise glass* Here's to hoping companies like Misikko create more affordable, yet effective, lines of hairstyling tools. *cheers*

And the winner is......The Contemporary Christian. Congratulations! I really hope you enjoy your new ceramic flat iron.

Thanks to everyone that entered. If you didn't win this time, stay tuned. There are more giveaways to come.


July 23, 2010

Kathryn Kerrigan Finds Its Way to Bucktown - Larger Shoe Sizes for City Girls

For Chicago women that wear hard to find larger shoe sizes, the Kathryn Kerrigan shoe boutique has heard your cry! Although Kathryn Kerrigan has an online presence and two existing stores (one in Libertyville, IL and one in Canada), city girls can now rejoice about its newest location in Bucktown.

Strategically nestled amongst some of the city's best boutiques, the location is perfect for women looking to purchase an entire, head-to-toe look. This Chicago location carries footwear in U.S. sizes 9 to 16! All of the shoes are exclusive to Kathryn Kerrigan and handmade in Spain and Italy. Ladies, you will no longer have to search far and wide for unique, high-quality footwear.

As soon as I stepped into the store for the grand opening, I was greeted by the lovely Stephanie Sack. She is the owner of plus-size boutique Vive La Femme (which is right across the street, by the way) as well as the new Kathryn Kerrigan store. I've always been a fan of her lively personality and I must say it matched perfectly with the decor. Surrounded by pop art, floral curtains and colorful shoes, I had definitely found my happy place!

While checking out the shoes, I noticed a variety of styles, textures and heel heights. There really is something for everyone - wearing larger sizes, of course.

I was also delighted to see that THE designer, herself, was present. Speaking with Kathryn, I learned that she sketches about 50 designs every season and sends them to the craftsmen in Spain and Italy to be manufactured. She also informed me that the store receives new shipments every couple of weeks - yet another reason to visit often.

(l-r) Kathryn, Stephanie and Erin Creaney(from Studio 808)

So, head to Kathryn Kerrigan this weekend for all the grand opening festivities. If you can't make it, drop by whenever you get a chance. I'm sure the staff will welcome you with open arms.

If you're not in the Chicago area, check out the Kathryn Kerrigan online store OR Endless.com.

Kathryn Kerrigan
2031 N. Damen Ave

Labels: , ,

July 20, 2010

Style + Tech: Swarovski "Naughty Raymond" USB Memory Stick

While visiting the Swarovski Store at the Chicago Premium Outlet Mall this past weekend, I came across the most adorable memory stick!

Meet "Naughty Raymond"...

Toting 2 GB of memory, this little guy - blinged out in lovely Swarovski crystals - may possibly be the flashiest flash drive I've ever seen.

"Naughty Raymond" is available at Swarovski Outlet Stores and Swarovski.com.

How can you not love him?

P.S. You can also find "Happy Laura" (shown above in white) at Swarovski.com. She's just as darling.


July 19, 2010

Misikko Hana Elite Flat Iron Review and Giveaway

When it comes to appearance, hair is equally as important as fashion. Head-to-toe maintenance is required to complete any look.

This is the very reason why I agreed to review the Hana Elite 100% Ceramic Flat Iron 1" when Misikko contacted me. Although I have locs now, I recall the days of searching for the perfect flat iron. One that worked immediately - not after 2 or 3 applications in the same section. As we know, all of that heat is deadly to one's tresses. So, I decided that I would test it out on my sister, Brittany, since she is a natural beauty with hair sans chemicals (i.e. relaxer). With a retail price of $359.99 (currently on sale for $229.99) and features in both Marie Claire and Redbook, the goal was to see if it was worth the relatively high price tag and the hype.

The flat iron arrived inside a tin case accompanied with a ribbon wrapped travel pouch and heat proof silicone mat, all of which were surrounded by flowers. I really appreciated that Misikko understood the importance of presentation. Now, it was time to test it out!

Here are the results:



Isn't she such a diva?

Needless to say, Brittany loved the Hana Elite. It seemed to straighten as soon as she applied it to her hair. Imagine the time savings from that alone! The texture of her hair felt identical to that of relaxed hair. This flat iron is indeed a winner for those looking to straighten naturally curly or kinky hair. Similar to an oven, you can easily set the temperature (140-450° F) based on how much heat you would like to apply. This really makes the Hana Elite suitable for all hair textures! I think it's safe to say that this flat iron lives up to its hype. Would I pay $300+ for it? I'm not so sure. However, I definitely would consider taking advantage of that sale price of $229.99.

For one lucky winner, you won't even have to worry about the price. Misikko has offered to give away a Hana Elite 100% Ceramic Flat Iron right here on ChiTown Fashionista!

To enter the giveaway:

1. Follow Misikko on Twitter or subscribe to the Misikko newsletter.

2. Leave a comment on this blog post explaining why you want the Hanna Elite 100% Ceramic Flat Iron. Be sure to also include your email address.

For an additional entry: Retweet this giveaway.

Good Luck!

*This giveaway ends Friday, July 23rd at 11:59pm (CST) and is only open to residents in the U.S. and Canada*

Visit Misikko.com to check out more of their products including CHI Hair Straighteners, FHI Flat Irons and Professional Hair Dryers.

Labels: ,

July 15, 2010

Posh Passé T-Shirt Winners!

Congratulations to the Posh Passé winners thus far!

"Pretty Chick"- Candace

"Diva Chick" - Roxanne

"Vintage Chick" - Devon

Thanks to everyone who entered!

Stay tuned as we round out the Posh Passé giveaway series with t-shirts inspired by the women of Zeta Phi Beta and Sigma Gamma Rho.


Labels: ,

July 14, 2010

Business Cards...How do I carry thee?

Whether a corporate exec or a blogger, we all have business cards on hand for the purpose of networking. But how are you carrying them? Loosely in your handbag? Or in a business card holder?

Business card holders are not so hard to come by. Many of us either purchase them from our local office supply store or wait until we receive a complimentary one from a conference or company presentation. But what if we were to put a little more effort into a holder that closely reflects our individuality and/or personal style?

Don't know where to look? Well, here are some unique business card cases I found for a variety of personalities.

1. The "Green" One: Recycled Circuit Board Business Card Holder - BigGreenSmile.com

2. The "Chic" One: Tiffany Blue Patent Leather Business Card Case - Tiffany.com

3. The "Quirky" One: Briefcase Business Card Holder - AsaneaGifts.com

4. The "Geeky" One: NES Controller Type Card Case - GeekStuff4U.com

5. The "Romantic" One: XOXO Business Card Holder - Eskell.com (Chicago's own)

6. The "Girly" One: Fabulous Pink Designer Business Card Case - Sugarluxe.com

If you're like me, more than one of these represents your personality. I'm a Geeky-Chic kinda girl. How about you? Which one (or two) appeals to you the most?


July 13, 2010

Cute Bracelets by Apple Bottoms - Who Would've Thought?

I usually steer clear of urban clothing brands. This is mainly due to the fact that these brands typically drench their items in logos and gaudy embellishments. So, imagine my surprise when I spotted these cute bracelets in K&G and discovered they were made by Apple Bottoms.

The apple charm (adorned with crystals on the leaves) and the simulated gems make this bracelet sparkle. I picked it up in black and ivory. They looked so cute both separately and together, that I couldn't help myself.

If there's a K&G nearby, you can pick these up for $9.99. Otherwise, you can purchase these at Buyz.com for $12 (Black, Ivory,Red).*

So, what do you think? Should I assume Nelly has stepped his game up?

*please note that this bracelet runs large and may not work well for my petite fashionistas


Shoe Swoon - Gianmarco Lorenzi Suede Platform Sandals

I'm certain these would be considered works of art...

Available at Farfetch.com for $585


July 12, 2010

5 Signs of a True Shopaholic

Being that I am the "enabler of fashion consumption", I take pride in my ability to encourage others to shop. Plus, I'm admittedly a shopaholic. How do I know?

Here are my '5 Signs of a True Shopaholic'.

1. Your shopping wish list changes daily: I try so hard to focus on a specific list of items when determining my next purchases. However, my list is constantly changing! I blame the internet for this. With all the fashion bloggers (oh, that would be me, huh?) highlighting new product lines, up-and-coming designers and sample sales, it's hard not to succumb to all the wonderful things in the marketplace.

2. You manage to find something to buy no matter the store: From Nordstrom to Best Buy to Home Depot, I ALWAYS find an item I want need. Not only do I love fashion but also music, beauty products, electronics and home decor. Place me in any store and I'll come out with something...anything

3. You're in love with the act of shopping: Even when I have no intention (or money) to make a purchase, I enjoy window-shopping and adding items to my shopping cart (virtual or otherwise). Browsing the selections and checking for trends are close runner-ups to actually making a purchase.

4. You buy things just because they're on sale: Although I'm working on this, I fall victim to this bad habit on occasion. It's so hard to pass up sale items, especially when they're more than 50% off! What do you expect me to do?! The best way to avoid the sale trap is to stick to your wish list. If an item that you've been coveting goes on sale, then by all means, GET IT! However, if you're buying designer harem pants that you have no real intention of wearing, simply because they're more affordable, STEP AWAY!

5. You forgo (or considered forgoing) meals to make a purchase: There have been plenty of times when I've been out shopping with friends and we'll forgo a meal just so we can continue shopping. I mean, who has time to eat when there are sales to enjoy?! My key to survival here is packing a couple of granola bars in my handbag for quick consumption and uninterrupted shopping. On the other hand, I'm also known for jokingly saying, while in the middle of making a big purchase, "I'll just eat Ramen noodles for the rest of the week". As funny as it sounds, it's a sad state of affairs if you're dead serious. We must never get to a point where we're sacrificing healthy eating habits for a pair of Louboutins. NEVER.

This leads to some important points:

  • If you can't afford it, don't buy it: Going into debt should never be an option.

  • Don't purchase loads of fast fashion simply because it's affordable: I love trendy items as much as the next fashionista. But, for classic pieces, channel the days of yore when consumers would save for weeks - sometimes months - to purchase high quality items. These items are worth the wait and last a lifetime or longer. There have been many debates on whether clothing is an investment since for most items, there is no "appreciation". My argument would be that the return is not always monetary. How awesome would it be for you to pass on a timeless, well-made piece to your daughter/son? Uber awesome, in my opinion.

So, continue to live and breathe shopping....Lord knows I will. The challenge is to be more sensible, focus on quality instead of quantity and STAY.OUT.OF.DEBT.

From one shopaholic to another...

P.S. If you have any more shopaholic traits and/or tips to to share, feel free to comment. I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Labels: ,

July 7, 2010

A Lovely New T-Shirt Line by Anna Hovet

Last week, I had the pleasure of attending Anna Hovet's launch party for her new signature t-shirt collection. Adorned with whimsical images and phrases like the Norwegian translation of "Try harder. I'm worth it" and the Latin translation of "Everyone loves an educated woman", these shirts empower women by making an unapologetic statement of one's worth.

I experienced love at first sight when I laid eyes on the "Everyone loves an educated woman" shirt. The woman donning specs and surrounded by math formulas spoke directly to my inner nerd! It is officially on my wish list.

In addition to Anna Hovet's online shop, these shirts are sold at Black Market Caviar. Drop by to view the entire collection in person. And while you're there, check out the in-house screen shop in back. It's pretty darn cool.

Labels: ,

Posh Passé "Vintage Chick" T-Shirt GIVEAWAY

First, congratulations to Roxanne on winning the DIVA CHICK tee!

Soooo...we're going to take a break from the Chic Greek t-shirt giveaways to offer a little something to my readers who are not affiliated with a Black Greek sorority.

The "Vintage Chick" tee is one of my favorites from Posh Passé. So much so, that I purchased one for myself! It's made from pima cotton and, therefore, extremely soft. This tee is versatile and can be worn with a pair of skinny jeans, a mini-skirt or anything in between.

Whether you are an avid vintage shopper or simply appreciate vintage style, this tee is perfect for you!

(Click HERE to check out the entire Posh Passé collection)

To enter the giveaway you must follow all 3 steps below:

1. Follow (or subscribe to) ChiTown Fashionista via Twitter, Facebook or Email.

2. Follow Posh Passé on Facebook or subscribe to the mailing list on the Posh Passé homepage.

3. Leave a comment on this blog post indicating how you are following (or subscribing to) ChiTown Fashionista and Posh Passé. Be sure to include your email address and shirt size (S to L) in the comment. *please note that this shirt runs slightly large*

For an additional entry: Retweet this giveaway.


*This giveaway will end on Wednesday, July 14th at 11:59 PM (CST). The winner will be randomly selected.*

Labels: ,

July 4, 2010

Shoe Swoon - Sam Edelman 'Lorissa'

I was going to post this 'Shoe Swoon' later in the week. However, when I received word that these are selling like crazy, I decided to post immediately so that my fellow fashionistas could get their hands on these before they sold out. When I first laid eyes on these, I knew they would be a hot commodity as soon as they were available for sale. Sam Edelman has really outdone itself this time!

Meet Lorissa...

You can order these now at Solestruck for $189.95. OR you can pre-order them for $15 less at AKIRA. Just know that AKIRA won't ship them until July 20th.

Higher price but immediate satisfaction OR lower price but longer wait time? Decisions, decisions....

Oh, and if you're still not sold on the beauty of this shoe, just think....the rhinestones and cone shaped studs allow this shoe to double as a weapon. Footwear that serves two purposes. I love it!


July 1, 2010

A Reader's Request Answered - Silver Strappy Shoes

I occasionally get requests from my readers to help them find that perfect "something". I've decided that, going forward, I'll post some of these on the blog since there may be others in search of the same thing.

One of my readers is on a quest to find a silver strappy yet classy shoe in a price range from $80 - $100. She emphasized that she wants to "be able to use them often".

When I'm working with a $100 and under budget, I search stores that sell items at a discounted price. This means that paying the price of $100 or less will get you a shoe valued at $100 or more. Talk about a win-win situation! Also, because she indicated that she plans to wear them often, I focused on finding shoes constructed with leather as opposed to man-made materials.

Below are my picks - all of which have a classic design that will work well with many outfits. And the best part is that I managed to stay at or below the low end of the budget. *high five*

1st row:
Jessica Bennett 'Marek' - $76.97
Charles by Charles David 'Wisper' - $80.50
2nd row:
Nina 'Ulphia' - $76.00 (available at Lori's Shoes)
Gianni Bini 'Disco' - $79.99

Of course, I had to throw in a pair from a local favorite, Lori's Shoes. ChiTown represent!

I love reader requests. So, keep 'em coming.

Labels: ,