Tag Archives: wedding

{Style & Beauty} The Perfect Black Tie Wedding or Formal Event Look

24 Aug

Since I’m loving weddings this week, I thought I would share the perfect look for your next black-tie or formal affair.

This outfit took me through three events this summer, including a ballroom black-tie wedding, an outdoor wine country wedding, and a fancy dinner on the town, and will no doubt take you straight through fall and right into winter, too:

  1. Chanel Half Moon Wallet on Chain in Grey Metallic (pictured above in Black).  Finally, the perfect evening handbag:  with six credit card slots, enough room for your smartphone, lipstick and keys, and a crossbody or clutch option, you’ll never need another evening purse again . . . except this one in every color.  Find it at Neiman Marcus and Chanel boutiques.
  2. David Meister Drop Shoulder Gown.  This drop shoulder jersey dress has more interest than a strapless gown, figure flattering side ruching, and a bold enough brooch embellishment that you can forego a necklace.  Available at Bloomingdales.
  3. Dior Ondine Crystal Flower Temple Sunglasses in Black.  The perfect way to bring the bling.
  4. Stuart Weitzman Jazziest Platforms.  Black satin beauties guaranteed to lengthen your gams and bring your style to new heights.

And of course, don’t forget to complete your look with a smoldering eye and peachy pout:

  1. Les Quatres Ombres de Chanel in Smokey Eyes.  If the intensity overwhelms you, try a softer version with the Murano quad.
  2. Bobbi Brown Long Wear Gel Liner in Black Ink.  You could always try MAC’s Fluidline in Blacktrack or Smashbox’s Cream Eye Liner in Black – the most important thing is using the right brush.
  3. MAC Lipglass in Clear.  Sure, it’s sticky, but it stays put.
  4. Chanel Joues Contraste in In Love.  Of course.
  5. Dior Diorshow Mascara in Black.  Get waterproof if you’re a crier, but stick to the original formula and brush instead of the newer Diorshow Black Out.
  6. Dior Rouge Lipstick in Mazette No. 028.  This perfectly bright cherry coral can be lightly applied as a sheer wash or layered for an intense pop of color.
  7. MAC Lashes in No. 36.  A not too obvious fringe to bat around the ballroom.
  8. Chanel Le Crayon Levres Precision in Rouge.  Line, fill and blend with one tool.

For a less spendy look, try these alternatives:

  1. MAC Cine-Matics Smoky Black Makeup Lesson.  Makeup made easy with all you need for your smoky eye look in a compact travel case with mirror:  three eyeshadows, Technakohl eyeliner in Graphblack, Zoom Lash mascara in Zoom Black and two brushes.
  2. Nars Blush in Orgasm.  This contemporary classic needs no introduction.
  3. Boots No7 Lip Glace in Cherry Kiss (or try Tangerine Twist).  Target comes through with this imported essential you’ll use every day.
  4. Nars Creme Lipstick in Blonde Venus (or try Belle de Jour).  Good for brunettes, too.

And for a complete – almost – all in one solution (with a most befitting name), try NARS Limited Edition Everlasting Love Artist Palette:

Happy Glam-ming!

The Outlaw Mom (TM) Seal of Approval:  I have owned, tried and tested each and every one of these fabulous products and trust me, ladies, they will not let you down!

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CRAVE IT. COVET. LOVE IT. This Week: Love Weddings

24 Aug

This week I’m loving weddings:

Wedding season is wrapping up and we’ve been to three beautiful weddings – including a first-time marriage for our 65-year old uncle and his blushing bride – and witnessed two engagements – including my own lovely bachelor brother Uncle B’s proposal to Aunty C.

My own wedding was a mere four years ago, but already, Gump’s (where we registered) is sending me its wedding magazine.  Perhaps they were thinking that I’m done with my starter marriage and on to the next?

First or fourth, official or un-official, weddings rock.

Like our wedding bands pictured above?  Visit Philip Press Master Platinumsmiths on the Sunset Strip in West Hollywood for the ultimate in custom made engagement rings, wedding bands and one of a kind handmade pieces for your jewelry collection.  Don’t think you need to be engaged to wear one of these amazing designs:  a right-hand ring is just what every girl needs.

The Outlaw Mom’s Gingerbread Sweetheart Mini Cakes and Cake Balls

21 Jul

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E & C are getting married!

To celebrate, Jane and I made them Gingerbread Sweetheart Cakes.

These sweet little cakes would be perfect for celebrating Valentine’s Day, a birthday or an anniversary, too!

Ingredients

  • gingerbread cake (from scratch or mix)
  • almond buttercream frosting (or cream cheese frosting)
  • fondant
  • candy melts (or white chocolate)
  • heart-shaped cookie cutter

Step 1

Follow my cake pop tutorial to combine your gingerbread cake and my favorite buttercream frosting (or any vanilla frosting) into cake pop mix.  Instead of using all of the mix to create cake balls, form and flatten three or four palm-sized balls of the mix and use a cookie cutter to cut out heart-shaped cakes.  With the remainder of the mix, form your standard cake balls used for making cake pops.

Step 2

While your mini cakes and cake balls are chilling in the refrigerator, roll out and cut your fondant using the same cookie cutter from Step 1.  (If you dislike the taste of fondant, you could substitute the fondant with marzipan or leave it out completely and stick with the buttercream or cream cheese frosting).  You can also cut out any other decorative shapes now.

Step 3

Attach the fondant heart cutouts to the mini cakes with a generous layer of frosting.  I used my favorite buttercream frosting, but substituted the vanilla extract with almond extract for a more exciting flavor against the warm and spicy gingerbread.

Step 4

Turn your cakes upside down and spread a layer of melted candy melts to the entire base of each cake.  This will give the cake a more solid surface to sit on and also add another sugar kick to the overall taste of the cakes.  You could always substitute white chocolate for the candy melts, but keep in mind that if the weather is warm, the chocolate will melt or sweat, while the candy melt will stay put longer.

Step 5

After your cakes have been chilled and the candy melt bases have dried, start decorating!  For fun, I decorated the cake balls with Xs and Os, attached with a candy melt base.  Again, you could substitute chocolate for the candy melts.

Happy Baking!  And Long Live Love!

Adventures Of A Working Mom Staying At Home {Week One}

11 Jul

Well, I made it through my first official week as a stay-at-home mom.

How did I fare in my new role?

Day One

Day Two

  • Scrape poop out of the bathtub.  Bleach bathtub.
  • Wonder how to manage without an Outlook calendar or time to check e-mail, make phone calls or blog.

Day Three

  • Scoop poop out of child’s pants.  Bleach child’s pants.
  • Scrape bouncing poop off of my big toe.  Bleach toe.
  • Meet with startup regarding possible job opportunity.
  • Participate in 1 hour call in my brand new role as a VP on the Board of a local non-profit after kids are asleep (aka during what I thought would be my “me time”).
  • Wonder why I still have meetings and appointments and less downtime than if I were at the office.

Day Four

  • Scrape poop off of floor.  Bleach floor.
  • Take kids to doctor and then to buy them new shoes.
  • Participate in another 1 hour evening call for the non-profit gig during my “me time.”
  • Wonder why I have had two days and two evenings in a row dedicated to things/people other than me when this is supposed to be my “time off.”

Day Five

  • Scrape poop off my forearm.  Bleach forearm.
  • Spend the morning reviewing documents and answering e-mails for the new-but-now-getting-old-supposed-to-help-me-fill-my-supposed-free-time-non-profit-gig.
  • Wonder why these children poop so much and why it doesn’t land in a diaper or the potty.

Day Six

  • Escape to a wine country wedding without the kids.
  • Someone escapes with my iPhone.
  • Wine obliterates the capacity to wonder about anything.

Day Seven

  • Try to avoid cleaning any dirty diapers, but end up having to get rid of mouse droppings.  Prefer cleaning the kids’ poop.
  • Mourn the loss of two years of photos and videos of the kids.
  • Wonder why I have less time for myself when I’m not even working. Wonder whether I should consider going back to work again in the near future. Wonder if I started working again, would I have more time to blog. Wonder why blogging helped me make the decision to stay at home, but now that I’m home, I can barely get a post together or participate in any link parties. Almost wonder why I quit my job to stay-at-home … but don’t:

A Twilight Anniversary

19 May

After receiving an Edward and Bella calendar for Valentine’s Day (which prompted me to buy my own gift), I thought that the Twilight gifting was over . . . but, here is what happened on the morning of our anniversary:

Me:  (sleeping soundly)

Hubby & Jane:  (trying to muffle their activities downstairs)

Hubby:  Happy Anniversary!  (brings hot tea, a small gift-wrapped present and Jane to me in bed)

Me:  Happy Anniversary (ooh, what’s that pretty little package?!)

Jane:  (before I can get it unwrapped, flings it across the room, then shouts in random TV character voice) You’ll never find that again!  Ha ha ha HA.

Me:  Where is it?!  Where did you throw my present?!

Jane:  (brings me the half-unwrapped gift)

Me:  (What could it be, what could it be?!  I frantically open the present)  A palm-sized book on Edward Cullen?

Hubby:  That’s the last of the Twilight presents, I promise.

Jane:  Happy Grocery!

Me:  You mean “anniversary.”

Jane:  Happy Grocery!

Hubby:  Hey, yeah, what do we need at the store?  Do you want to go grocery shopping this morning?

Me:  (closing my eyes and trying to get back to sleep while visions of grocery lists and teenage vampires dance in my head)

What’s In A Name?

3 May

Hubby and I have been through a lot together.  By the numbers, in the seven years we’ve been together, we have seen:

  1. One house
  2. Two kids
  3. Three years of a long-distance relationship
  4. Four miniseries (The Wire; Friday Night Lights; John Adams; The World at War)
  5. Five employers (not counting the one where we met)
  6. Six cars
  7. Seven moves

Our fourth wedding anniversary is coming up next week and I still haven’t changed my last name. I wonder:

Does that make us any less of a couple or any less married?  Does not sharing the same last name as my husband and children make me any less a part of our family?

My Name, My Identity

It has never made sense to me why I should have to give up my name, which served as my identifying label for the 31.5 years before I got married.  Why would I change it after marriage?  Had I suddenly become a different person the day after our wedding?  Was I not really “me” anymore?

Since birth my name has been the trademark of my personal brand.  The 23 letters my parents chose for me 35.5 years ago identify who I am and over the years have come to signify what I’ve done and what I stand for.

My personal and professional brands are built entirely around my trademark name.   If someone mentions my name, the listener already has a pre-formulated opinion of who I am.  Likewise, if someone reads my name on a legal pleading, she already knows what to expect from me as an adversary.

I’ve never understood why I should have to give up my name.  Why shouldn’t Hubby be the one to give up his identity and take on my last name?  It is a much better sounding last name after all – and easier to spell.

Or why can’t the kids take my last name.  I am the one who carried them for nine months and gave birth to them.  I mean, I am their mother.  You might even argue they owe it to me as an act of homage to their source of life and as acknowledgment for sacrificing my body and the rest of my life for the rearing of their little souls.

Somehow the idea of erasing myself based on “tradition” seems a bit too irrational for my tastes.  Is there some benefit to subsuming my identity to my husband’s?  I must confess:  when I hear that a former single girl has taken her husband’s name my respect for her goes down a notch because I assume she’s giving in to the old-fashioned notion that a wife is her husband’s servant and property.

A Rose By Any Other Name

But on the other hand, my name is just a name.  Random letters strung together to form a label my parents decided was best at the time.  (I’ve already heard my parents’ regret at not having named me some of the other baby name choices  in the running at the time, so it’s clear there was never any “right” name for me.  Thankfully they didn’t name me Chrysanthemum).

It’s not like I’m more loyal to my father’s side of the family than my mother’s, even though I carry my father’s last name.  And it’s not as though I really am a brand like Coca Cola, which would suffer serious reputational and monetary harm from losing it’s name.

Why must the act of changing one name’s necessarily correlate to the outdated concept of becoming your husband’s chattel?  Perhaps I’m the fuddy duddy here.

So what will I do?

I think I might change my last name.  Why?  Well, to a certain extent your name does represent who you are.  Who I am right now is the mother of a family and it would be nice to have one more thing that marks us as a unit – even though it is as superficial as a name.

Heck, it wouldn’t kill me to throw out a romantic gesture either, would it.  Would it?

A Royal Curmudgeon

29 Apr

It’s official.  I’m a crotchety old lady.  I must be.  Otherwise, I wouldn’t be so utterly disappointed in Kate Middleton’s choice of wedding attire.

It’s not that the dress isn’t lovely.  It is a beautiful frock.  But it’s just a dress.  An evening gown, maybe, but not a royal wedding gown.This morning I patiently waited to catch a glimpse of what I imagined would be a fantastical creation befitting a soon-to-be royal.  Instead of a regal gown on par with the pomp and circumstance of princely nuptials, my heart fell flat to see the simple Sarah Burton design which looked more appropriate for a quiet wedding in a meadow of the English countryside, instead of Westminster Abbey.

I don’t think I’m alone in my dismay.  The disappointment of some well-respected designers seemed to be palpable in their comments on the dress.

Isaac Mizrahi is quoted as saying, “I loved the dress. I like plain things a lot right now so this was a winner.”  While he loved the dress and the way it allegedly complimented the bride’s figure (made curvier with hip padding!), therein lies my personal disenchantment with the whole ensemble.  It know it was a British wedding, but did her dress have to be that boring?

To be further ornery, I must differ with Mr. Mizrahi.  The dress was not exactly flattering for the bride’s figure, given that the shaped bodice negatively showcased the flatness of her bosom and the pointed, structured darts at the chest created unseemly shadows under her breasts.

Plus, the design failed to take advantage of her lean, willowy stature and cut her figure short in the torso and the legs.

After being thoroughly disappointed by the dress, I was even more disheartened to learn – and see – that Miss Middleton had done her own makeup.  Perhaps my philosophy is a bit outdated, but I still believe that you need to put on your face before going out in public . . . especially when you’re marrying a prince in front of millions of people.  The amateur, natural look just doesn’t cut it.  Likewise, a half-up half-down do is much too informal for the occasion.

As I said, it’s official:  I’m an old fuddy-duddy.

For more details on Sarah Burton creation’s for Alexander McQueen, see Fashionista’s coverage here.

Images from Fashionista and Huffington Post (both crediting Getty).

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