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Hot Step.

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Even if you’re not a fan of Valentine’s Day, I venture to guess that you are a fan of shoes?  My first instinct is always towards neutral shoes, but some of my boldest shoes often end up getting the most wear (and are always the most complimented – here’s looking at you cobalt suede pumps).  So why not start off February by treating yourself to an eye catching new pair?  I promise you’ll be wearing them long after the thought of Valentine’s Day has passed.  Happy Friday!

PS. Have you heard of Sole Society yet?  Every single pair pictured above is by the online retailer and lot’s of them are under $50.  With free shipping both ways.  You just can’t argue that.  

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Sing her a song.


It’s been quite some time since my last Sound Check post, but there’s nothing that sets a mood quite like music – so for Valentine’s Day here’s a little required listening.  Ever since we got a record player, I’m loving anything with a slightly retro sound – it’s just somehow more romantic, no?  I plan on having this playlist on repeat while I make my homemade cards this weekend! 

Listen here.

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Valentine’s Day – Desk to Date.

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The problem with Valentine’s Day landing on a week night is that you have to manage to transition from what you’ve worn to the office into a dinner appropriate look without much time.  Tricky, but achievable.  So, after seeing this adorable feature over on Ruche, I thought I’d try styling my own Valentine’s day to night looks…

For my ‘Desk’ look, I played up the slightly mod feel of the dress and layered it over a thin black turtleneck, then added quirky yet classic accessories like a matching red belt and leopard print flats.  For my ‘Date’ look, I simply removed the turtleneck and belt, switched to black pumps, and played up the collar detail by adding a few statement rhinestone necklaces (sometimes less isn’t more – I like to wear at least 2 at a time).  Plus, I removed my glasses, swept my hair into a low side ponytail (a perfect hairstyle to minimize the static that somehow always occurs throughout the workday), and added red lipstick (I swear by MAC’s Ruby Woo).  Date ready in 5 minutes flat.

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Insert Collar Mini Dress
 by Tulle
Gap Turtleneck (old, similar here)
Steve Madden Leopard Flats (old, similar here)
Vintage Belt, charm bracelet and silver clutch
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Kiss. Kiss.


I’ve always liked handmade Valentine’s Day presents the best.  They don’t have to be expensive, just thoughtful.  And what better thought than a reminder to give an extra kiss or two?  Lipstick prints left on a napkin (a la Marilyn Monroe), drink glass or even shirt collar have always seemed so mysteriously attractive to me.  So for the upcoming holiday I thought I’d leave my own mark…






This would make a perfect present for a long distance love so they can have your kisses while you’re away, or as a subtle reminder to your significant other that you’re always up for a kiss.  Don’t have a special someone?  How cute would this be on a vanity table or in the bathroom on a shelf next to your make-up bag?  

If you make your own, I’d love to see!  Share with me on facebook or via instagram!
(Post Submission for IFB’s Project #81 inspired by Avon’s new Totally Kissable lipstick line)
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For the Friends you Love.

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Today kicks off a 3 part Cheap Monday series featuring gifts for Valentine’s Day.  First up, inexpensive ways to celebrate the friends you love…  

People seem so quick to dislike this holiday for it’s great expectations or because they think it’s designed against those who are single.  But some of my favorite Valentine’s days were spent with girlfriends, getting manicures and eating cupcakes.  So why not embrace the chance to show everyone in your life just how much you love them?  

Nest:  Pick your poison and head over to your best friend’s house armed with these adorable plastic tumblers (available at Target in a convenient set of 4) and pretty paper straws.  So much safer than braving a bar on Valentine’s Day, and at $13.99 total there’s really no excuse not to show the love.  

Dressed: At $10 each, these sweet little rose gold earrings from Lulu’s would be just the thing to place inside a card you mail to your long distance friends, give to your sisters, or place on your favorite co-workers keyboard come Valentine’s Day morning.  They’re simple, pretty much universally likable, and go a long way in proving that it’s the thought that counts.  

The Rest: Nothing says Je t’adore like a guide to Parisian Chic.  Conveniently festive in red and gold, this pretty book is perfect for gifting a close friend on Valentine’s Day.  Especially since it’s not over the top love themed, making it enjoyable all year long.  You know, kinda like your friendship.  

Check back next Monday for gifts ‘For the Boy you Love’…

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The Steele Maiden © 2012

Fashion, Travel & Lifestyle. Based in NYC.