Tuesday, December 28, 2010

And they all lived happily ever after.

I think I'll just cut to the chase. I am retiring Classic Black Pumps. For good. We're not just moving to Tumblr or taking a hiatus. This post is going to be the last one that I ever write on this blog. My enthusiasm for fashion blogging has worn down considerably as school, friends, and romance are taking a front seat in my priorities. As I've said in recent posts, writing this blog has been an amazing experience. I've learned a lot and grown a great deal as a person through my years maintaining it and I am going to miss it terribly

Oh. And I have another announcement. Ladies and Gentleman, I am proud to present to you my newest blogging project, Daisy and Yves. For a detailed explanation on why it's my remedy to being exhausted with fashion blogging, please read my inaugural entry and if you like what you see, become a follower. I'm taking the focus away from fashion and taking a more personal approach to blogging. I've posted a few entries since I started Daisy and Yves a week ago, and I can already tell that I've made the right decision. I hope you agree.

Thank you so much for reading Classic Black Pumps all these years. And thank you even more for joining me as I pursue a new online adventure. I love you all. I truly, sincerely do.

image via We Heart It

Watch this space.

Hello loyal and lovely readers. I don't have much to say at present, but a major change is about to happen. Come back on January 2 for a little announcement.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Attention, shoppers.

It's been awhile. Like a really, really long while. So here's the plan: I will catch you up very briefly on Hillary-World, and will then write about something we can all benefit from. And just what might that something be? Smarter shopping. Read on, readers!

So my life. It's been going alright. Incredibly busy (which is my rather paltry excuse for the lack of posts) but wonderful just the same. My IFB internship was a fabulous learning experience, and more than anything else gave me a whole new level of respect for people like Jennine who put so much time into making the online community work together. Maura is going to school in Chicago now which rules. School is challenging and a thrill. I know people typically use the word "challenging" to describe things that are both difficult and unpleasant but still entirely necessary. Rest assured that in this case I am not one of those people. I find myself agonizing over some of the texts that the upper-level texts that Shimer has us read, but when I finally figure out their meaning, it's the most rewarding thing in the entire world. My humanities class is reading Descartes' Mediations on the First Philosophy, and while it takes me a fair chunk of time to understand the french philosopher's train of thought, I feel rather spectacular when I finally understand the heart of his argument. Other awesome things? My boyfriend (yes, the same one from the summer! Who would have thunk?!), my friends, my job in the admissions office, and the city of Chicago. Bored yet? Me, too. Let's do what we do best: Blog about fashion.

Yesterday Maura and I were walking around Macy's, drooling over designer duds. A chunky Rachel Roy cardigan had Maura doing some major coveting, and I couldn't stop staring at a gorgeous shift dress by Tracey Reese. The prices were definitely out of our range, but there's nothing like treating yourself to some in-person designer eye candy. What was a pleasant, and reasonably affordable discovery was the clearance rack. $60 , as it turns out, could make you the happy owner of a versatile, quality Kensie dress. I am not typically one to spend that much on a single clothing item. It is my embarrassing admission that I often go for quantity over quality when it comes to shopping. As a result, I have a ton of clothing, but hardly things that exude style and class. Yes, that red polka-dot trapeze dress from H&M looks adorable with a nautica-inspired belt cinching the waist, but it's not exactly an investment. It isn't versatile, and it is likely to fall apart before the end of the season. I buy too many things, waste money on clothes that aren't going to stand the test of time, and wonder why my wardrobe and bank account always seem lacking. And after venting all this to Maura while we hungrily eyed a rack of Nanette Lepore coats, I came up with my rules for shopping.

To make your rules for shopping, think about the things in your closet that get the most wear. Think about what your weaknesses are when it comes to buying new outfits. Think about people whose style you admire and what makes their outfits look so good. To get you started, here's what I came up with for myself:

1. Never buy anything from H&M, Forever 21, or any store of a similar audience/prince range. I say this not because I think these retailers are bad. I say it because every single time I walk through their doors, I find about a million tops, skirts, and dresses and feel the painful need to buy every single one of them. My mind tells me "Go for it! They're such great deals!" but these sorts of purchases are the very reason I spend way too much money in a single store and my closet is overflowing with things I've only worn once. Cheap, on-trend clothes are my weakness. I will, from here on out, only buy basics (H&M tanks are my favorite things to layer with) from the aforementioned stores.

2. Only buy one item per shopping trip. Oh, that pencil skirt is adorable! So I probably need an adorable blouse to go with it. My mind tells me this, and my heart aches for it to be true, but you know what happens when you give a mouse a cookie? She'll need to buy a pair of chocolate brown hidden-wedge boots to go with it. This rule might be too extreme for the majority of you, but it's something I really need to make to curb my cravings.

3. Only buy things that are on sale. Again, this might be too extreme for a lot of you, but if I don't make this rule, I will spend way too much on a single item. Plus it's not that hard to find crazy gorgeous things on the clearance rack.

4. Make these rules a habit by shopping with someone else who won't let you break them. In my case, this is Maura. I know I would let myself get away with ignoring my rules for the sake of a crazy cute mini dress from Forever 21, but Maura certainly wouldn't. Until I am super cemented in my shopping rules, I won't go on shopping sprees alone.

5. If you must buy more than one thing, make it an accessory. I used to take for granted the effects a good scarf can have on an entire ensemble, but seriously. It's like magic. And belts - those babies are friggin fantastic.

Well that's that for today. I am looking forward to getting back on a regular posting schedule. Have gorgeous evening/day/whatever's relevant to the time during which you are reading this.

images found via we heart it

Friday, August 6, 2010

So this is kind of a big deal.

Hey guys. This is my 300th entry on Classic Black Pumps. I started this blog my senior year of high school when I was 17 years old, and it's been a major cornerstone of my life since then. I feel like my 300th entry should be something epic, but this week has been a hectic one and the fashion-y ideas swimming in my head are few. That being the case, let's take a trip down memory lane. Enter: my favorite entries I've ever written, starting with the earliest. Enjoy!

A Tribute to Fall Colors is an assortment of pictures that Maura and Helene took outside our house. It's really very pretty and marks the beginning of my fondness for photography. I got a Flickr account around the same time this was posted.

I wrote Cupid after seeing Matthew Sheppard's mother speak at my high school. Not fashion-related, but probably one of the most emotionally-driven things I've written on my blog.

Prom-o-rama is one of my first Polyvore-packed entries. Also, this is one of the few earlier entries in which the outfits are something I would consider wearing nowadays. Seriously. A lot of entries before it have clothing that, when looking at them today, I'm like "Ew. Really, Hillary?"

RIP Alexander McQueen. This entry marks the very first day I fell in love with him.

One of my fondest blogging memories? Being sent two tubes of Lipstick Queen lipstick and a postcard from Poppy King after I mentioned a Nylon article on her apartment in this here entry. It left me pretty starstruck. I still want/need to read her book, "Lessons of a Lipstick Queen."

LOLOLOLOL. I totally referred to a rather Jersey Shore-esque Chanel Resort collection as "quietly sexy." Love is no longer blind, friends.

I think this ranks as one of my favorite entries I've ever written.

I am still crazy coveting the Marchesa dresses in this entry.


One of the first entries I wrote during my freshman year of college. I just realized that I've written the majority of this blog as a college student. Crazy stuff, no?

Wow. I think this was the first and last time I went over a collection, look by look. I was really obsessed with Chanel then, wasn't I?

I have done very few outfit posts, and in this one, I'm wearing purple knit tights by Juicy Couture.

Since writing this entry, things have changed considerably. Not the whole dressing-to-the-nines part. I still do that on a daily basis. But rather, the reactions my peers have to my outfits. They're amazingly supportive now and considerably stylish themselves. We've all evolved.

Fashion is fun. This remains one of my favorite collections to date. It makes me smile.

Here we have an entry inspired by Gala Darling and based on my roommates at the time (also there's a hint of Maura in there, of course). My roommates loved this entry. It was awesome making them a part of my fashion blogging world.

I don't wanna talk about it. I'm so happy that the Tumblr phase was short-lived.

A Rock Band-inspired collection? Yes, please!

Something awesome about keeping a blog is being able to look back and see how you've changed. I hope that this entry will always function to remind me of how much I've grown.

Enter my first attempt at articulating the academic side of fashion.

When I wrote this entry, I was finally, after nearly three years, getting the hang of the whole blogging thing. This is very much in part due to my internship with IFB. What a learning experience!

Thank you all so much for being a part of this adventure with me. I really love the world I've found in fashion blogging, and I hope to be a part of it for a long time. I've always been soft-spoken, a follower. This blog is the first thing I've done that is mine and only mine. I am so proud of what I've created here and through it I've learned that I have the capability to create even more. This blog has given me a voice when I used to think I wasn't worthy of one. I used to (and sometimes still do) spend my days shuffling about quietly, not wanting to upset anyone and only speaking when spoken to. This blog has changed all of that, helping me to learn that I have a lot to say and I say it well. So yes. Fashion blogging, you rule. And readers, you do, too. Have a beautiful weekend. I really love you all.

images via we heart it.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Saving face.

This morning I overslept a a little bit. I had 45 minutes before I had to be at work, so I was going to have to work fast. After brushing my teeth, washing my face, and putting on moisturizer, I slid into a pair of skinny jeans, cuffed them up a la capris,and threw a menswear-inspired button down over it. Tan sandals completed the look and I still had 5 minutes before I needed to catch my bus. I looked in the mirror. Good hair day, but my face looked dull and tired. That's when I employed my new go-to summer beauty routine. It's fast and keeps you looking polished and stylish all day long.

1. It all starts with powder. Too Faced Invisible Powder always does the trick for me. Keeps the shine away and can conquer the sticky feeling that usually goes hand in hand with Chicago mugginess.
2. Next, Coralista by Benefit gets brushed on the apples of my cheeks.Without reloading the brush, I dust a little on my forehead, nose, chin - anywhere the sun would naturally hit - immediately after. Any coral blush will do. Just make sure it's not too pigmented and looks natural on your skin tone. Nothing like a little bit of blush to give you some healthy color.
3. It's time for eyeliner. Lately I've been using Stila Kohl Liner in Tiger's Eye, but I feel like kohl might not be the best call. MAC Eyeliner in Industrial is a recent favorite. Going for a steely blue is always a good bet. A little on the lower lash and a little on the upper.
4. There's no need for heavy eyeshadow. Apply Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Sellout almost like a highlighter.
5. Smashbox O-Gloss looks pink and playful when slathered on lips. The color being not as natural-looking as the rest of your makeup is just fine. There's a balance and it makes you look more than just wide awake. It makes it look like you actually put thought into your appearance.
5. Last but not least, curl those eyelashes and get out the door. Unless it's a special ocassion, I tend to pass on mascara. I find it to look too dramatic for daytime and not using it cuts a fair amount out of my routine. For a lot of people, the too-dramaticness is not the case, but when matched with the way I usually do my eyes, mascara looks out of place.

I've been at work for quite some time now and my makeup is still holding strong. Of course looking like you're awake doesn't necessarily mean you feel that way. I'm all about iced vanilla lattes to take care of the rest. Alriiiighty. Have a wonderful weekend. Muwah!

images via We Heart It

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Not for the festivals.

Festival style has very much become its own entity. Girls in breezy floral print dresses and tan riding boots cover the fields in front of outdoor stages where indie darlings play and sing. Bloggers create boho, heat-friendly looks on Polyvore and Urban Outfitters is always selling loads of easy-to-wear cut-off shorts and button-downs this time of year. But whatever happened to straight up concert duds? Just because it's hot out doesn't mean bands stop playing indoors. So what to wear when your favorite bands has found themselves a dark, packed venue? If you're anything like me, band tees and distressed skinny jeans don't pass muster. Here are some looks to make you stand out from the crowd and help you dance along in style.

It's been a long day. I think tonight will consist of watching a movie and lying low in sweats and a none too trendy shirt. Possibly tie-dye. Forgive me fashion. I am about to sin. I hope the rest of you have something to dress up for. Enjoy the evening!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Flappers and Philosophers

I'm kind of obsessed with F. Scott Fitzgerald. I've read every book he's ever completed and have been known to go into great detail explaining the plots of some of his short stories. His lyrical descriptions had won me over before I'd even finished the first sentence of "The Great Gatsby." A love for all things 1920s came with my fondness for the author, and while I'm not exactly one to sport long strands of pearls and drop-waist dresses, the style of the era has a special place in my heart. This is why it's no surprise I've been totally loving the Jazz-Age dance party pictures on The Sartorialist. Here are my favorites.

Aren't they glorious? It makes me want to throw on a flapper dress and do the charleston. They don't make dance moves like they used to, darlings.