Travel, Be My Valentine; Wanderlust Recap 2017

It’s February and I’ve started thinking about what places I will visit in 2018. We’re one month in to 2018, so let’s get on the move! Since travel is on my mind, I thought I’d share the places I traveled to in 2017 and a favorite shopping (or other) destination from each city. Maybe one of these places will be on your 2018 list.

Sending Valentine’s Day love and wishes of safe travel in 2018,

Leigh

February 2017 Nashville, Tennessee

My favorite thing about Nashville, known as Music City, U.S.A., was the Country & Western fashion. From the Country Music Hall of Fame to the honky tonks on Broadway, loud and fantastic style was everywhere. I got to see Johnny Cash’s custom boots, Roy Orbison’s signature glasses, and a couple of sweet handmade get ups from the once “It Couple” of Country, George Jones and Tammy Wynette.

My favorite shop visited was Two Old Hippies in the Gulch area. Why? Because of their extensive selection of kimonos! The one I picked up, was perfect to pair with my Tony Llama boots, so I could fit right in with George and Tammy. Well worth the $50. I can wear it as a summer cover up too.

And shout out to Billy Ray Cyrus’ hair. Thank you, Nashville! I will be back soon.

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April 2017 Port Aransas, Texas

Let’s be honest, there’s not a lot of shopping in sleepy little beach towns like Port A, is there? So, I’m sharing my favorite spot to relax on the Texas coast. The spot is called Camp Coyoacan, named after the Mexico City district that was home to Frida Khalo.

The stylish campground of cabins and yurts are decked out with all the amenities you need without over doing it. This includes bike and trailer rental. It’s a nice little ride to the beach. As you can see, I did wear my kimono, purchased on the Nashville trip!

Hurricane Harvey Update: Port Aransas and surrounding areas of the Texas Coast were wrecked this past August by a category 4 tropical storm. Camp Coyoacan and much of the island sustained damage. I am pleased to report that the camp reopened in late December, just in time for spring travel. Much of Port A is still rebuilding and recovering. If you’d like to give to the cause, please visit the New Day in Port A Fund.

July 2017 Denver, Colorado

Oh Denver! You have been my summer destination for two years in a row, so you get two shout outs for hot spots to shop.

The first spot is Goldmine Vintage in the Baker neighborhood. I found an entire section of just vests in this cute little shop. The velvet and embroidered vest you see below was made for a night out at the breweries and strolling through Baker. You must visit this “goldmine” of a store when you’re in the neighborhood. In fact, Baker is an excellent place to stay, with plenty of Air B & B choices.

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The second shout out goes to True Love Shoes on Broadway. This cute little shop of shoes and accessories is incredibly affordable, stocked with good quality merchadise, and the staff is very helpful to a shoe junkie like me. The items purchased below were each in the $30 price range. Two pairs of cowboy boots and a pair of saddle shoe pumps for $60, plus tax, WOW! Thank you True Love, I truly love you.

September 2017 La Fortuna, Costa Rica

Being that my one international trip was deep in the jungle, I didn’t get much shopping done in the lush and green town of La Fortuna, near the Arenal Volcano. I did however, finally have a reason to wear this bird pattern dress, gifted from a friend at Texas Thrift in Austin. This and a few other sun dresses were the obvious choices for dinner, dancing, and Costa Rican night life.

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December 2017 New Orleans, Louisiana

You already know! I paid a visit to my home state to see a Saints game this past December. I posted about my favorite Nola thrift shop, NO Fleas Market in last month’s Thrift Shopping With Purpose. (Check it out!) Since I already shared “fave shopping” in Nola, I’ll share a couple of bonus stops I found on my adventures.

I want to give a shout out to my home away from home that weekend, Site 61 Hostel, an alien, UFO, and sci-fi themed hostel in Mid City.

Site 61 was quaint, clean, and I really dig their “outta this world” theme! Plus, I met other Texans there. Miranda, from the Rio Grand Valley also knows how to doll up for Saints Game Day and beignets in the quarter. We had fun with a mini photo shoot at the hostel. Texas girls really are “belles filles”.

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Next on my adventure was lunch and a late afternoon pick me up. You may not know, but New Orleans has some excellent Italian food and I just love Theo’s pizza on Magazine Street. They serve Abita root beer too, a delightful addition to my lunch.

The afternoon pick me up came from HiVolt Coffee in the Lower Garden District. They make a perfect matcha latte, have a comfy atmosphere, and all the WiFi you need.

December 2017 Las Vegas, Nevada

And now we come to my final trip of 2017, Fabulous Las Vegas! This was my first visit to Sin City and I must say I really hit the jackpot at the shopping destination, Glam Factory Vintage. Not only did I find a righteous pair of bell bottoms, I met Elvis the French Bulldog and vintage mascot.

I had so much fun with owner, Stephanie and Ruth of her staff. They were so accommodating and let me try on armfuls of dresses, coats, and more. I wandered around the area (Old Vegas), looking at more vintage shops, and nothing quite lived up to the awesome selection and vibe that Glam Factory offered. Pricing was good too. My $35 bell bottoms were ideal evening wear for dinner at Gordon Ramsay’s Fish & Chips and a night watching Cirque du Soleil’s The Beatles LOVE.

And there you have it friends, my final 2017 look, scored on my last adventure of the year. Bell bottoms are a blast! Get you some!

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Thrift Shopping with Purpose in 2018

Hello friends! It’s been a while. December was a busy month with a lot of travel and holiday festivities. During all the fun and merriment I made time to thrift, as usual. So tonight I bring you my first post of 2018. It’s all about thrifting for a cause!

Every new year that goes by, each one of us works hard to refocus, find new purpose, improve our lives, and the world around us. So I want to begin this year by recapping my finds at an incredible thrift shop called NO Fleas Market in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Thrifting for a cause is not new to me. My favorite thrift store in Austin is a non-profit that gives proceeds to back to the community and grass roots organizations — it’s called Treasure City, and their mission is “Solidarity, Not Charity”. So naturally, my first shopping stop in the Crescent City was a thrift store that gives it’s proceeds to animal shelters and rescue groups to be used towards veterinary services at the Louisiana SPCA Community Clinic. Donors assign their items to a participating shelter or rescue and when the items sell, proceeds are given to that group. And the person buying those items, leaves with some stylish swag purchased for a good cause. A win-win for everyone!

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During my adventures, I purchased 4 apparel items, 1 vinyl record, and a VHS tape, totaling $24.98. All great quality finds and the clothes are perfect for winter weather, New Year’s, and holiday soirees. I met some lovable fur babies along the way — MeKal and Ammon, and found a lot more treasures than what I could actually buy. I had a blast shopping their eclectic records, VHS collection, and cassettes. My vinyl and VHS finds were an Alison Moyet record and a Madonna VHS tape.

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Ammon, the cuddly cat, looking for a forever home.

Another highlight, was meeting the manager, Heather and staff member, Ashley. They were delightful, friendly, and helpful, offered to hold my items and dressing room while I stocked up, explained how their shop benefits the LASPCA, and offered treats to shoppers’ pups. Also noteworthy — pets are allowed!

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Meaux the pup, who enjoys treats at NO Fleas Market on his daily walk. It’s the highlight of Meaux’s walk!

Below are my “looks” I scored from NO Fleas and a couple of bonus adventures/looks at Peaches Records — a few doors down from NO Fleas on Magazine Street, and some Saints “black & gold” I wore about town. I hope you enjoy this post and have a Happy New Year! Last night I toasted to thrift shopping with purpose, impacting real change in 2018, and giving back to my community and the causes for which I am passionate.

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Off the shoulder, striped top, $5.99, benefiting the LASPCA, directly. This look was perfect for a holiday after party at The Jackalope South Shore in Austin, TX. Photo credit: Jennifer LaRoux

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Off the shoulder, striped top, $5.99, benefiting the LASPCA, directly. This look was perfect for a holiday after party at The Jackalope South Shore in Austin, TX. Photo credit: Jennifer LaRoux

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Off the shoulder, striped top, $5.99, benefiting the LASPCA, directly. This look was perfect for a holiday after party at The Jackalope South Shore in Austin, TX. Photo credit: Jennifer LaRoux

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Coral Lacoste sweater, $5.99, benefiting Animal Rescue NO. This coral sweater is warm and colorful, and it can even carry into a spring look, when the weather is still a little cool. Did I mention, I love Lacoste?

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Coral Lacoste sweater, $5.99, benefiting Animal Rescue NO. This coral sweater is warm and colorful, and it can even carry into a spring look, when the weather is still a little cool. Did I mention, I love Lacoste?

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Coral Lacoste sweater, $5.99, benefiting Animal Rescue NO. This coral sweater is warm and colorful, and it can even carry into a spring look, when the weather is still a little cool. Did I mention, I love Lacoste?

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Vintage baby doll dress with a bow, $10.99, benefiting Animal Rescue NO. This blue-gray dress is the cutest winter look for hanging out by the pool at Kitty Cohen’s in Austin, TX. The dress even has a bow, just like a Christmas gift!

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Vintage baby doll dress with a bow, $10.99, benefiting Animal Rescue NO. This blue-gray dress is the cutest winter look for hanging out by the pool at Kitty Cohen’s in Austin, TX. The dress even has a bow, just like a Christmas gift!

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Vintage baby doll dress with a bow, $10.99, benefiting Animal Rescue NO. This blue-gray dress is the cutest winter look for hanging out by the pool at Kitty Cohen’s in Austin, TX. The dress even has a bow, just like a Christmas gift!

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Little black dress with shoulder pads, $6.99, benefiting LASPCA, directly. This is my warm and wintery sweater dress. The shoulder pads give it shape, structure, and accentuates curves.

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Little black dress with shoulder pads, $6.99, benefiting LASPCA, directly. This is my warm and wintery sweater dress. The shoulder pads give it shape, structure, and accentuates curves.

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Little black dress with shoulder pads, $6.99, benefiting LASPCA, directly. This is my warm and wintery sweater dress. The shoulder pads give it shape, structure, and accentuates curves.

Hanging out on Magazine Street, after shopping at NO Fleas, brought some exciting surprises. Just a few doors down is Peaches records, a shop that has it all. It’s an old luncheonette turned record and gift shop, run by the lovely Shirani Rea and her furry sidekick, Sir Winston Pepperbottoms. Shirani showed me true Southern hospitality. Peaches carries a large collection of music, hosts events, sells unique gifts like Cash Money Records apparel, Prince candles, Dolly Parton magnets, and more. Here we are kickin’ it!

And not be be forgotten, my New Orleans trip included a Saints game! On Saints game day in New Orleans, you’ve got to sport some black & gold about town. Here are a few of my looks for pregame, during, and the after party. Yeah, the Saints won. Looking forward to the playoffs. NFC South Champs, WHO DAT!

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Chillin’ in Jackson Square with stripes, my gold Converse sneakers, and a vintage Saints windbreaker. Photo credit: Adrian Romo

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Chillin’ in Jackson Square with stripes, my gold Converse sneakers, and a vintage Saints windbreaker. Photo credit: Adrian Romo

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Chillin’ in Jackson Square with stripes, my gold Converse sneakers, and a vintage Saints windbreaker. Photo credit: Adrian Romo

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My victory look, a gold jacket and gold heels. Ready to celebrate in the Quarter. Photo credit: Adrian Romo

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My victory look, a gold jacket and gold heels. Ready to celebrate in the Quarter. Photo credit: Adrian Romo

Football Femme

Hello everyone! It’s Fall and football season is in full swing. This week my team, The New Orleans Saints had their sixth straight win and are leading the NFC South. Now let’s not talk about that too much, as I’m superstitious and this post is not entirely about the Saints. Let’s talk about sporty style. “Football Femme”, in particular. Since my team is doing well, I’m inspired to share with you four looks that can be mixed and matched in several ways. These looks can work with any team’s wear/colors and most importantly, they prove that football fashion can be form-fitting, fun, femme, and frugal.

My first find this season, is this vintage Locker Line jacket. I love a good NFL jacket, ever since my boo let me wear his Starter jacket back in 1994. I searched for a Saints jacket online and finally found this one from a seller on eBay. It was originally $50, however I offered $30, which is what I ended up paying. Just goes to show you that you that you can find a great deal when thrift shopping online. I love that this jacket can be paired with jeans, dresses, skirts, and even shorts.

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Locker Line Saints Jacket – $30 eBay

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Accessorize with hoops earrings, leggings, beanies, boots, and skirts.

Below, I’ve styled the jacket with two different skirts to dress is up and dress it down. One look says “Fashion Forward Fan” and the other says “Let’s Tailgate!” And guess what, cutoff mini skirts are back.

My next look is called “The Faith”. It’s called this because you’ve got to have faith in your team and my girlfriend, Faith inspired this look. It’s a tee and scarf combo that she always pulls off perfectly. The tee is from a New Orleans boutique called Fleurty Girl. Not all football fashion has to be from Academy or a sporting goods store. Search out local boutiques that design their own tees. That way, you’re shopping locally, you’ll have a unique design, and most likely a ladies fit to choose from.

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Fleurty Girl Tee – $25, paired with embellished gold earrings, fringe boots, black and gold scarf, and jeans. Shop Fleurty Girl Here

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And now for a fun and casual style that screams “Laissez les bons temps rouler!” or “Let the good times roll!”, if you’re unfamiliar. I find that jerseys are hard to pull off. Most are ill-fitting on a curvy girl like me. I decided to try my hand at shopping the boys section at Goodwill and found this treasure. My $5 Marques Colston jersey is roomie and comfy enough to cheer on my team, yet snugs my curves like a fitted tee. Remember, jerseys can get pricey, so check the thrift shops and children’s sections regularly.

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Colston Jersey – $5 at Goodwill paired with knee high socks, chucks, that cut off denim skirt, and some ornate gold hoops.

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Oh, and don’t forget your favorite Nola coozie for the tailgate! This one is from Domilise’s Po-Boy & Bar, hehe! Have some fun with your hair too. Do a  “Sporty Spice” high pony.

And now for my last look of the post. Pro-Tip: you don’t have to buy official NFL gear, clothes adorned with logos, or baggy sportswear to rep for the home team. Just buy stylish clothing, in your team’s colors, at your favorite stores. Easy peasy, and you’ll be the trendsetter at the game. Every team has great colors that can be accented with gold or silver accessories. Here’s what I came up with at Boubie’s Boutique in Austin.

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Black Jacket with Gold Zipper and Snaps – $8 at Boubie’s Boutique

 

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I paired this jacket with high-waisted jeans, gold hoops, boots, and some shimmery leg warmers to accent the look.

To recap, repping for your favorite team doesn’t have to be a tee with jeans. But if it is, make it a snazzy design from a boutique! Your look doesn’t have to be purchased in a sporting goods store or from the men’s jersey section. Look in thrift shops, second hand online shops, and make an affordable but fair offer. Don’t forget to mix it up. These four looks can easily be six or eight with some accessory changes. Last of all, have fun with your look. Get hyped! Show your team spirit in your style and swagger. And get to a game!

Since I’m talking about getting hyped, I’ll leave you with this treat. A little Black and Gold  to get us fans psyched for Sunday. WHO DAT!