Happy Thursday, y’all! Oh, I have been waiting all week to share this awesome Three Ways to Wear with y’all–the anticipation has been killing me *wink* What I really adore about this TWTWT is that anyone (yes–even you!) can do it! All you need is your “boyfriend’s” (or an oversized), dark denim jacket. *presses button* That was easy!
Now, without further delay, let’s take a look at the fabulously fall photos + outfit details :) Enjoy!
P.S. Before my grandmother (or mother) calls me…No, I do not have a boyfriend…but if I did, I would totally borrow his jean jacket *wink* The oversized jean jacket was given to me by my awesome Aunt Karen.
It’s Weekly Whistle time on the blog again, which means it is time to showcase my outfit of the week…BUT before I do, I must tell y’all about my crushed dreams of hopping in Leo and driving to Brooklyn, NY while wearing my “Brooklyn” tee. Wouldn’t that have been super cool *wink*
The picture says it all. Brooklyn is a 10+ hour, 635 mile drive from apartment, and I was going to go into this elaborate explanation on how much it would cost and how many times I would need to refuel Leo before reaching my destination; however, I suck at math. #IAmNotAMathMajor
Now that we have discussed my crushed dreams of driving to Brooklyn and my lacking of math skills, let’s take a look at this week’s Weekly Whistle outfit details *wink*
Wait! Before you go, don’t forget to check out the awesome giveaway I am hosting on my VIP Facebook page NOW! You can enter to win a suprise Summer Essentials Beauty Bag…ooo la la! Click here for details and to enter.
To help celebrate the two year anniversary of VIP, I decided to follow up with another one of my favorite handmade jewelry artisans. This fabulous jewelry artisan was the SECOND PERSON I EVER INTERVIEWED, and today is Throwback Thursday…soooo… *drum roll* Rachel Leathers of Hearts of Stone! Yay!
I absolutely love Hearts of Stone Jewelry because Rachel creates magnificent pieces with natural stones such as agate, jasper, and geode. Each piece is beautifully unique which makes her jewelry very appealing to the VIP–I am always a sucker for one of a kind pieces *wink* To be perfectly honest, I simply adore everythingin the Hearts of Stone Etsy shop. My goodness! How will I ever decide which new piece to add to my collection? Hmmm….
Now, while I go browse Rachel Leather’s Etsy shop, y’all enjoy this fabulous VIP follow-up interview with jewelry artisan Rachel Leathers of Hearts of Stone Jewelry. :)
VIP: What’s new with Hearts of Stone?
Rachel: The newest thing that happened for HoSJ this past year was a new collection, the Black Hearts Collection. I had a heart-breaking break-up with a man [George] I loved who I thought I was planning a life with, but I found out he was seeing someone else whom he married. I discovered what a black-hearted person he really was, so the name of the collection was easy to come by! I wanted to take a bad and ugly situation and turn it into a positive situation, on many levels. Taking the black and gray hearts I already had, I came up with the collection as a way to spill my guts and do some healing along the way. Being busy and creative did the trick, and now I can add to the collection and continue to make pretty things, regardless of the original inspiration.
VIP: Are you working on any new projects? If so, spill the beans! *wink*
Rachel: My newest project for HoSJ is making a necklace to be gifted to the stylist for the next season of “The Bachelorette” in hopes it will be worn on the show! I have made a beautiful white jade heart that I plan to pair with lots of tiny crystals and smaller hearts, and call the necklace “Falling in Love”. Cascading chains will drip from the heart and create a waterfall effect. I’m excited about it and can’t wait to give you a picture! I’ll have duplicates available for sale in the shop, along with a rose quartz option.
VIP: What is your 2014 inspiration?
Rachel: My inspiration for 2014 is renewal and reclamation. Before I met George, I was a happy and content with myself, and part of my discovery after the break-up was the surprise that I wasn’t even happy when we were together. I had accomplished so much in my personal life before we met, and I want that back. I’ve already reclaimed my personal happiness, and now it’s time to get back the skinny body! Finding my joy again has been huge for me, and it will only show itself in my work. I haven’t really created much for HoSJ since the Black Hearts Collection…So, I’m so excited to make a necklace inspired by love, and I want to carry that over into an entire line. It will be a good year!
VIP: What is your 2014 motto?
Rachel: My motto for 2014 is to just give it a try. Regardless of what “it” is, I do best when I just jump in feet first and give something a go. Personally or professionally–it doesn’t matter. You never know until you try, right?
VIP: What color best describes you?
Rachel: Blue has always been my favorite color; however, these days red is what makes me happy! I want a new car and have my eye on a bright red one, my phone cover is red, and I bought a red raincoat that made me feel bold, LOL! Red is a passionate color, and I feel passionate about life right now, so…red it is!
VIP: What is your favorite song of 2014 thus far?
Rachel: My favorite song for this year is one that was a favorite five years ago when I was originally losing weight–Boz Scaggs’ “Get On The Natch”, from the album “Dig”. It’s like an anthem for me, and the song basically says small steps add up when you’re working towards a goal. It has a funky groove to it–it might not be a typical Boz song, but it speaks to me. I’ve been listening to him since I was 17, so his music has been part of my life’s soundtrack, and it is a kick-booty song to work out to!
VIP: Tell us a little bit about your new shop.
Rachel: The new shop is called Genuine Leathers Designs, which confuses a lot of people because there are NO leather garments or accessories! When I was in design school 23 years ago, it was a name I came up with for an assigned collection I designed. My instructor scolded me over it, since I only had one leather garment. I simply said, “but it’s my name.” She looked me in the eye and dead panned, “that’s funny.” How could I not use that to my advantage? And I understand the confusion, considering it is a line of men’s shirts made from 100% cotton!
My hope is to add to the line over the years and not just make shirts. They are fun casual shirts based on bowling/Hawaiian styles–I like to call them “A new twist on an old favorite!” What makes my shirts different is that I use bold prints, but instead of using the print all over the shirt, it is only on the front and back yokes. I then add coordinating solids at the rest of the body and collar to make said print stand out even more. I think a bold print needs a frame to make it special, and by only using the prints sparingly, I accomplish that. Several shirts also include coordinating prints, so each shirt has its own personality. They’re great for any age, from the hipster to the oldster!
VIP: What inspired you to start Genuine Leathers Designs?
Rachel: The inspiration for opening the new shop was to put myself back to work. I’ve been a professional seamstress for 24 years, and the economic downturn really hit me hard. The majority of my career was in the costume industry and work has been beyond sparse. I like the idea of working for myself, and if possible, hiring others to work for me for a change. I’d love to be able to put others back to work as well as myself, and since I’ve been active in the Made in America Movement, that has become part of my mission. Being an entrepreneur never crossed my mind until I began the jewelry and then the shirts. It has been very eye-opening and scary, but so very worth it. I just jumped feet first! Also, I recently participated in the 2014 Golden Globes gift lounge with GLD, displaying miniature shirts and gifting handkerchiefs to the attendees. I’m hopeful this will bring much needed exposure to the brand. 2014 should be a good year for shirts, too!
Check out the VIP’s first interview with the jewelry artisan here.
In love with Hearts of Stone Jewelry? Shop online here.
Hello, fabulouses, and welcome back to the blog! Tonight on the blog, I am going to show y’all a VIP Casual Saturday way to rock a pretty pink coat…because every fashionista needs a little break from stilettos *wink*
To change up Outfit 1, trade the three07 little black dress for a pair of pink cords, red sweater, a multi-colored scarf, and a slouchy hat for a cute and cozy look that is perfect for a Casual Saturday at the coffee shop with a good book.
Hello, fabulouses! I would like to introduce y’all to the VIP’s newest handmade jewelry addiction Ethereal Energy, an Etsy shop owned and operated by Liz Stechschulte of Washington, DC. Liz’s shop offers brilliantly handmade pieces for both men and women and has a beautiful selection of bracelets, necklaces, and earrings. The VIP + Ethereal Energy = A very happy fashionista!
“We use the finest materials in our jewelry, yet we are able to create pieces that are highly affordable for anyone. Our stones are hand selected from The International Gem and Jewelry show, and some of our jewelry pieces use exotic stones which are not always accessible to the public – such as our raw Chrysoprase gemstone slices, Ametrine, and African Opal Jasper. We take great pride in handcrafting our Made in America products in our small home studio, and through the VIP blog we hope to reach a wider audience who may be interested in our Artisan made Jewelry Collection,” explains jewelry artisan Liz Stechschulte.
“I am delving into designing jewelry mixed with vintage components….I submitted a piece to the stylist for consideration for the TV show, The Vampire Diaries…To my surprise and delight it was chosen for the New Season and to be worn in the show by the main character, Elena! I was beyond thrilled to be one of the lucky artisans chosen. My gratitude goes to The Artisan Group (TAG) who made it possible,” states Liz.
Now, without further ado, I give y’all the spectacular interview with Liz Stechschulte of Ethereal Energy! Come on, let’s get fabulous!
VIP: Tell us a little bit about yourself.
Liz: I was born, reared and educated in Washington, DC. I have lived my entire life in this wonderful, culture-filled city, our Nation’s Capital. I am half Filipino and half German, and I am the middle child of three siblings. I have a small family, and we all live very close by to one another. I studied Psychology, Health, and Art at American University. After graduating, I worked in various medical settings. Although I enjoyed the health care field, I have always loved jewelry and gemstones, and so I took a leap and enrolled in the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) to study gemstones in depth. I am absolutely passionate about working with natural gemstones, designing, and creating beautiful pieces of jewelry for others to wear and enjoy.
VIP: When you are not making jewelry, what do you enjoy doing?
Liz: There are so many things that I cannot list everything. I always enjoy spending time with family and friends. I love shopping at department stores, the farmer’s market, and flea markets. I love reading fashion magazines and spiritual books, cooking with organic food, sewing clothes, and visiting museums. I also enjoy singing and listening to pop, classical, country, and classic rock music. My absolute favorite places to visit are the Gem and Mineralogy exhibit at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum, The International Gem and Jewelry Show twice per year, and the National Zoo to see the wild and exotic animals.
VIP: What color best describes you?
Liz: I like many different colors but the color that best describes me is pink because I am a real Girly Girl. As a young girl, I took ballet and felt so much at home wearing a pink leotard and ballet slippers. I love everything about being feminine-putting on makeup, curling my hair, wearing stylish clothes and pretty jewelry, especially many rings on my fingers. I am happiest and most confident when I am feeling and looking pretty, so I think I’m a pink girl.
VIP: What is your favorite time of the year?
Liz: My favorite season is summer because I love hot weather and wearing cute summer sundresses and sandals. I love the colors of summer with the vibrant greenery of nature and the beautiful tropical flowers, such as Hibiscus and Tiger lilies which bloom at this time of year. I also go with my family to the beach- the Outer Banks in North Carolina during the summer.
VIP: How would you describe your personal style?
Liz: I would have to say that I am fairly conservative yet colorful in my style. I like to wear classic pieces of clothing- fitted tops in vibrant colors and pencil skirts in basic black, and earth tones. During the summer, I like to wear halter dresses with colorful floral patterns in greens, turquoise and orange hues. I bring a little edginess to my style with the accessories – in the jewelry, belts, make-up, and hairstyle.
VIP: Describe Ethereal Energy jewelry in five words.
Liz: Colorful, feminine, elegant, organic, and earthy.
VIP: What inspires your jewelry?
Liz: The ocean, nature, fruits and flowers, and recently sweet treats like candy, cupcakes and ice cream!
VIP: What inspired you to name your shop “Ethereal Energy”?
Liz: My Father gave me a book by Edgar Casey on the electromagnetic properties of gemstones and the positive energy they emit. I had in mind that I was going to create beautiful pieces of jewelry for the website using gorgeous gemstones that reminds me of flowers, the ocean, the sky, and things of a heavenly nature.
VIP: VIP Question: What is one item in your closet you would never toss out and why?
Liz: My black leather pencil skirt! I’ve had it for years, but it still looks brand new. This skirt matches everything, it always makes me feel pretty, and it provides a bit of edginess to any ensemble.
Shop the lovely items available in Liz’s shop NOW because it is never too early to start your holiday shopping!