7.22.2015

Our Wedding Day: What I Wore















Something Old:  Great-Grandmother's Gold Bracelet
Something New:  Vera Wang Wedding Dress and René Caovilla Heels
Something Borrowed, Something Blue:  Mother's Sapphire Ring 


You can find my first post about our actual wedding day (and not wedding planning!) here.  In that post, I talk about how I prepped for the wedding and the details of our hair and makeup.  I also included lots of photos from the bridal suite, getting ready with my girls.

Now... For the most important #OOTD I'll ever do.


The Dress

You can read about my dress shopping adventures in NYC here and here.  

This design was brought into the Vera Wang flagship boutique just days before I arrived for my appointment... The designer wanted to see if brides had any interest in that particular design.  As soon as I described what I was looking for (lace, romantic, dreamy) my stylist Talia pulled this dress.  It was meant to be, since the dress was taken back to the studio days later.  

I had specific ideas about the changes I wanted to make to the dress's original design and as a girl who loves fashion, working with Vera Wang was a dream come true.  We discussed every detail of my dress, it was made to fit my body, and Vera's seamstresses and stylists brought all my ideas to life.

The dress begins with layers of champagne tulle under layers and layers of ivory tulle to give it a soft, romantic glow from within.  Chantilly lace applied by hand accents the bodice and the top layers of the skirt.  The back lowers to a small 'v' and is followed by buttons down to the bottom of the bodice.  We created these delicate straps to mimic the flattering straps of my bridesmaids' dresses.  Tiny crystal beads were hand-applied all over the bodice and cascading down onto the skirt.  We added a sheer mesh ribbon to accent the waist and tie in a bow at the back.

The veil is long, but simple with hand-applied Chantilly lace to match the dress.

The dress was surprisingly light for the amount of layers and detail it possessed.  I chose to forgo any corsets or undergarments since it fit like a glove and I wanted to feel comfortable in order to move around and dance.  Bless the Dress and our Breakers attendant bustled the back of the dress for me before our first dance at our reception.

I'm often very picky and specific about the clothing or accessories I purchase and my wedding dress was no exception.  I never buy anything I don't love, so I analyze and customize every detail before falling head over heels in love with it.  After all the customizations were complete it was truly the dress of my dreams.  It made me feel so feminine and timeless on our wedding day... I visit it often in the guest closet and just feel the fabric and admire it for a while.  I will cherish it always.


Dancing Dress

J's favorite dress was my dancing dress by Liancarlo my mom and I found at Mark Ingram Atelier.  It is perfect for hourglass, curvy shapes and featured a beautiful embroidered blush tulle under a dramatic ivory French Alençon lace overlay.  I'll show you photos of the dress when I post about our reception.  I'm thinking of having some professional photos taken of the dress because I just don't think it was given an opportunity to shine. 

Lidia was my stylist at Mark Ingram and added a light, cropped bustier to the inside of this dress for support.  She is a genius and will make any woman feel fabulous in her gown.  I'm so thankful I had her help because I couldn't have felt better to dance and move around our reception.


The Details

I wore Bond No. 9's Saks Fifth Avenue En Rose fragrance and Saks Fifth Avenue For Her body cream for my wedding.  Saks Fifth Avenue En Rose is beautiful, feminine fragrance with notes of lantana leaves, dry dates, orange rose, tuberose, amber, musk, and sandalwood.  It pairs beautifully with the Saks Fifth Avenue For Her body cream with its notes of gardenia and jasmine.  Combined, the fragrances will last over 24 hours on my skin.

My beautiful pearl and crystal hairpiece from Bacio Bacio Bridal was placed just under my veil.  I wore gold and crystal earrings, necklace, and bracelet from Nadri jewelry that matched the teardrop design of the necklace and earrings I gave my bridesmaids.  

My mother lent me the beautiful sapphire ring my father gave her long ago for my "something blue".  It was designed after the ring Prince Charles gave Princess Diana and now has even more meaning since that ring is now worn by Duchess Catherine. 

Another important piece I wore was the engraved gold bracelet from my great-grandmother (a gift from my great-grandfather before they were married).  The bracelet has become a superstitious tradition in our family.  Each bride who has worn the bracelet on her wedding day has remained married and each who hasn't has gotten divorced.  I love the vintage feel of the bracelet and of course, I couldn't forgo wearing it with a track record like that.

I wore René Caovilla strappy heels... Lace-like blush suede with pink, gold, and iridescent Swarovski crystals covering the fronts.  They were so comfortable I wore them for photos, throughout the ceremony, and then continued dancing in them all night.

For the second half of our reception, I let the sexiness of my dancing dress shine by adding only statement Nina earrings and nothing else. 



Enjoy the photos!!










Search #TCGWedding on Instagram for more wedding-related posts. 







7.19.2015

Paris Shopping + Sunsets



Paris.  Chanel.  Haute Couture Autumn/Winter 15/16.  I can't even put into words what this trip meant to me.  In a short number of days and nights I gained a plethora of knowledge about this industry and enough inspiration to last me a lifetime. 

This is the first of my posts about my time in Paris.




Two representatives from Chanel met us off the plane and welcomed us into the unusually sweltering Parisian weather.  The City of Light was experiencing the hottest day on record in over 100 years and we were thankful to be in an air conditioned sleek black van heading to our hotel.  But as we watched the beautiful French architecture pass from behind tinted glass we began to ache for long, Parisian walks through the city... Sweating or not.  

We met our "Chanel Concierge" posted at the hotel, checked into our hotel rooms, and freshened up.   This breezy little striped dress was a Godsend during our trip.  I paired it with my Hermès Oran flats (similar here) and I could literally walk all day.  With hair in a bun and some wedges or heels it would be perfectly appropriate for date night or an evening out.

Waiting on our hotel room table was a shiny gold itinerary for the Chanel events and a beautiful little gift... A tiny replica of a decoration in Gabrielle Chanel's apartment on the Rue Cambon above her shop.  Coco was a Leo and was fascinated with lions all her life.  She had asked a local jeweler to remove a crystal ball from one of her treasured chandeliers and make a bronze lion base for it; the decoration became a favorite that sits in her apartment still today. 

We tucked our treasures away and headed off for some lunch and shopping to shake off any remaining jet lag.  Lunch had to be Angelina - a beautiful little tearoom founded in 1903 on the Rue de Rivoli.  The favorite tea spot of Chanel and many others, it's a bit of a tourist destination, but its tea and charming pastries aren't to be missed.   







Walking through the intense summer heat, we stopped by our favorite Parisian shops... Goyard, Hermès, Chanel.  Paris shopping is like no other and it's truly worth the spent calories to simply just walk along street after street and window shop, or faire du lèche-vitrines as the Parisians say.  

By the time we returned to our hotel after only a few hours outdoors, we were tired and hot.  Mom opted for room service dinner in the air conditioning and J and I decided to have an early picnic lunch in the park as the sun went down.  

The hotel had left us patriotic little cakes and a bag of chocolate goodies in our room, so I packed them away in my Longchamp bag and we walked through the Jardin des Tuileries.  We found some French sandwiches to go, reclined in chairs near a little fountain, and let the evening breeze blow softly past us.  I'm sure I looked a wreck after traveling and sweating through the afternoon, but I could have stayed in that moment forever.  That kind of evening relaxation with stunning architectural feats for a view must be the reason people come to Paris and never leave.









Follow me @BrittanyPillard on Twitter and Instagram to see more.

TheCashmereGypsy.com... Launching soon!! 





7.14.2015

High Neck Victorian-Inspired Dresses











As soon as I started seeing these floaty Victorian style dresses in the Spring issues of Vogue, I knew I had to have one for Summer.  High necks, a little lace, and the occasional sleeve allow these dresses to transition from a slightly bohemian look in summer to edgy Victorian for fall and winter with the simple addition of tights and booties.  I was thrilled to spot these at the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale... They're at a fantastic price point and would look perfect with these dress styles.

This particular dress is sold-out Topshop for Nordstrom, but I've linked my current favorites (some I like even more) down below in the slide.  Just scroll through the items and click on a photo when you'd like to shop.

I'm wearing my latest favorite bangles by Sweet Tea Jewels.  I discovered her on Instagram and absolutely love her wide selection of stones and crystals she uses in her bangles.  They're a similar style to Bourbon and Boweties, but they do take a significant amount of time to be made and shipped... I was stalking my mail for about 4 weeks before mine arrived.  I'm wearing a size M... They're a little loose for stacking as the size S felt too snug with the big stones and multiple bracelets stacked.

I hope you've been enjoying the photos I've posted while on-the-go in Paris.  I cannot wait to post in detail about all our adventures there.  This has honestly been the best trip of my life.  I've been working on the new website and it is so close to launching... I'm thinking it will be up with some fabulous posts from Paris Haute Couture in a week or less and I could just burst with excitement.

I arrived back in Denver, prepared these photos and unpacked, spent the night working, then packed and left for Kansas City to attend an auction with my mom!!  The Cashmere Gypsy is real, folks.  Feeling a little tired, but happy and thankful yours truly doesn't get jet lag!!


Here's to caffeine... 














7.12.2015

How To Cover Dark Circles



**complete selection of products mentioned at the bottom of this post**


As most of you who have been reading my blog for years know, I tend to be a night owl and bit of an insomniac.  For as long as I can remember I've found it difficult to get my mind to shut off and sleep. On the contrary, I often feel that I'm more creative at night and throughout my life I've used the evening hours to tackle projects, finish work, and write when it's peaceful and no one else is awake.

I wouldn't be myself without my late nights, but they do begin to catch up with me.  The first thing I notice when I've been pulling a series of all-nighters??  My dark under eye circles.

I assume most of you have seen or heard about the red lipstick trick for dark circles??  In the video below I break down the trick behind this and how it works.  Keep reading to hear my answer to the "red lipstick trick" and find out the foolproof way I hide my dark circles and sleepless nights.







Since this routine does add a bit more time to my makeup application, I generally save it for evening makeup or when I'm feeling really haggard.  Occasionally I will utilize this technique and just add a bit of loose powder all over the face for a day look.  Once you try it you'll become addicted and find yourself working it into your routine each day!!

As I mentioned in the video above, everyone's skin tone and dark circles are different so I recommend playing around with a color correction kit first to really discover which colors best camouflage your dark circles.  Try this kit for a bargain value or this one if you're feeling a bit more spendy.


Step One - Color Correction

Start with a light layer of primer all over the face.  I like this one because it helps blur fine lines and enlarged pores while making my skin look mattified and fresh all day long.

Use the tiny brush attached to the Giorgio Armani Master Corrector in #1 Pink and swipe the corrector over any dark or discolored areas under the eye, on the eyelid, and in the tear duct area.  Look at your eye area like a canvas... And paint the corrector on wherever you see flaws or discoloration.  No need to blend yet... You should see tiny little lines of color all over the eye area, concentrated in the darker parts.

Take a small flat brush and lightly pat the stripes and swatches of the pinky-peach color corrector into your skin.  You aren't blending so much as patting the color around and making the lines of color less visible.  After this step you should notice your eye area looking much brighter and less tired.


Step Two - Conceal

Run a beautyblender sponge under water, then squeeze out the excess with a clean towel.  The sponge will be big, puffy, and soft.  It will allow you to create a perfect airbrushed effect under the eyes.

Squeeze a bit of a creamy, yellow-toned concealer onto the back of your hand.  This one in #6 is my absolute favorite and I've been using it for years.  It has a light yellow tone that brightens while it camouflages any purple colors in the eye area.

Dab your moistened beautyblender into the little swatch of concealer on the back of your hand, then gently apply all around the eye area.  Be careful not to rub too harshly or you'll remove the color corrector.  Simply dab the concealer all around the eye area, creating a beautiful airbrushed effect.

For extra oomph apply the concealer all over the top lid, inner corner, and under the eye... Then add a little concealer in a triangle shape from the outer corner of the eye, down to the middle of the side of the nose, and back up toward the inner corner.  Be sure not to bring color onto the nose, you just want it coming up to the area directly under your tear duct.  This will give a beautiful brightened effect to the entire eye area.


Step Three - Protect

Many women apply their eye makeup first, then wipe any fallout from eye shadow or mascara and complete the rest of their face.  For some reason, this technique just doesn't work for me and I prefer to do my corrector, concealer, and foundation first before adding any color products to my eyes and cheeks.

If you're like me, there's an easy way to protect all the work you've done to hide those dark circles!!  These genius little eye pads can be easily applied under the eye before starting your eye shadow, eye liner, and mascara to ensure no dark products end up under your eyes.  I like to take one out and remove only one adhesive area, then rub my finger over it a bit so it's not too sticky.  I gently stick it underneath my eye and allow it to catch any fallout from my products.



Don't forget Early Access to the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is going on from now until July 16th.  Find details on how to shop and my favorite sale picks in my post here.  My all-time favorite sale of the year!!

Let me know what you get from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale... And tell me if you try my dark circle trick!!















7.10.2015

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2015



From July 9th - 16th Nordstrom cardholders can get early access to the annual Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, a fantastic sale on new Fall items that allows you to get your favorite Fall items at a major discount before they ever even hit the store racks.  After the sale, items will return to their full price. 

You can wait until July 17th and chance your favorite item or preferred size being gone, or you can sign up for a Nordstrom credit or debit card online here.  I have the Nordstrom debit card and it easily pulls from my checking account.  Either card allows you to build points on your purchases, redeemable by "Nordstrom Notes" for future Nordstrom shopping.  

To see my favorites, click on any item in the photo below.  At the bottom of this post you'll find a slide with a complete selection of my clothing and accessory picks from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale.  Click on any item in the slide to shop.  



Sweater.  Blouse.  Heels.  Dress.  Earrings.  Bag.  Tweed Coat.  


I think my latest experiences with Chanel have made me appreciate the contrast of black and white even more.  I chose lots of black and white pieces in classic styles... Add a colorful bag or shoes, chic black liquid eyeliner, and a beautiful red lip.

Be sure to follow my adventures from Paris on Instagram and Twitter (@brittanypillard).  I'll be back soon with a new website and posts filling you in on Paris Couture Week details!!


Happy Shopping!!
















6.28.2015

Garden Sunset










When I saw this dress it immediately made me think of Duchess Catherine (am I the only one who still thinks of her as 'Kate Middleton'?) with its delicate floral pattern, wrap style, and flattering v-neck.  I've been enjoying the versatility of this dress - it's perfect for bridal showers, luncheons, dinner dates, or weddings.

I paired it with simple drop earrings, a straw clutch, and nude wedges.  I wore this look again last evening for a night out in San Diego in celebration of a friend's wedding and paired it with heels.  It's such a versatile, comfortable look.  Click on a link above to shop or click on one of the photos in the slide down below to shop similar looks.

Be sure to enter my Chanel giveaway!!  I draw the winner tomorrow (Monday 6/29) and I cannot wait to see who will win!!  Thank you so much for participating and for reading my blog.  



















6.24.2015

Chanel Look For Less




Dress.  Necklace.  Earrings.  Bag.  Heels.  Perfume.  Lipstick.  


With the Chanel events ramping up next week, the classic brand has been on my mind for days.  I've been shopping for outfits and styling them to create some Chanel-inspired looks.  I posted one of my outfits on Instagram (@brittanypillard) and someone asked if I would create a "Chanel Look For Less" and show how to get a similar look with bargain brands.

As one of the most creative brands in the industry, Chanel can be interpreted so many ways... Lately they've had graffiti and even supermarket inspired fashion.  But my favorites are always the quintessential ladylike Chanel designs that have stood the test of time and appeal to generations both young and old.  Tweed, quilting, and pearls accented with beautiful metal chain detail.

Going to an interview, luncheon, work conference, fancy dinner, important event, or meeting the parents??  Stick to styles like this and your look will instantly appear polished, classy, and expensive.  Nothing in the layout above is over $100, but I can promise you if you sashay in wearing it you'll look and feel like you spent thousands.

Another bonus??  Classic pieces like this do not age.  Take care of them well by investing in dry cleaning and tailoring when needed, wipe off shoes and bags with a slightly-damp white cloth after each wear, and occasionally wipe down jewelry to decrease buildup of oils, makeup, and perfume... And you can wear these pieces for a lifetime.

Speaking of perfume, Chanel Coco Mademoiselle is my favorite Chanel scent.  Each time I wear it I feel so ladylike and... Just a tip, guys love this fragrance!!

Click any images in the photo above OR click on the links below the photo to see where each is from and put some Chanel-inspired pieces in your closet.  I've also included a slide below with lots more Chanel-inspired pieces.

Looking to add some actual Chanel to your collection??  Please enter my current Chanel giveaway in celebration of my upcoming trip to the Chanel fashion show and the upcoming launch of my new lifestyle website, The Cashmere Gypsy.  You can get extra entries every day by tweeting and Instagramming about the giveaway!!  The winner will be drawn on Monday afternoon!!