review: tieks by Gavrieli

Because I finally caved.

I have been looking for a good, investment shoe for a while. I wanted flats to replace my pink Tom’s Camila flats (no longer available, a tragedy), but I wanted something that would be comfortable, sturdy, and long-lasting. I’ve purchase cheap shoes and I’ve purchased mid-range shoes, but I’ve never purchased something as expensive as these.

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They came!!!! #tieks

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I did my research. Soooo much research. I watched countless videos, read dozens of blogs, and I vacillated between getting them now or getting them later. In the end, now won out.

I’ll post a review after a few weeks of wear, but my first impression is this:

  • These are sturdy shoes. The construction is solid. The leather sole under the rubber heel and toe is surprisingly tough, and the rubber is really strong too.
  • I watched a few videos on half-sizing (I’m ideally a 10.5, but rarely find shoes in that size). I followed the suggested sizing and went down to the whole size, and they fit just right. Toes are spacey, heel is not strained (we’ll see how they wear).
  • The color is really fair. I went for the ballerina pink and they look just like pointe shoes. Love it.
  • I was a bit concerned that the teal sole and stripe would be too showy, but they aren’t as obvious while worn.
  • The hand-written note is actually a nice touch (I didn’t think such things would sway me). My mom was really impressed, so that’s a thing.
  • And the flower is black and really pretty. But that’s just the icing on the cake.

I wore them at home for an evening (they have a really generous return policy according to reviewers), but they felt right so I decided to take them out this morning.

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We are taking them out. #tieks #ballerinapink #iloveflats

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Enjoying them so far :). Just wanted to add my own review. I paid for these, so this is an unbiased opinion, but someone who has issues with shoes in general.

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the view from Sunday: in which I am a toxic mess

Friends, I am sick. Stuffed up, drippy, wet, sneezy, sick. It was deceptive at first… I thought it was just good ol’ PMS, but all signs point to cold. Way to ring in the season. What I’m saying is, I’m a mess and my brain is in a bad, spacey place. Bad enough that I started editing the wrong draft… at least I caught myself before I saved it. My skin is also not happy. My whole body is rebelling. No bueno. I’m comforting myself with tea and Zarbee’s and a mad wave of decluttering to clear out the air. And youtube. Lots and lots of youtube.

The piles are getting smaller…
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And only two pieces from the wardrobe… the shirt is a little too worn and just doesn’t fit well anymore, and the skirt just hugs my hips the wrong way. So long.
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Reorganized the last of the TBR books…
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And trimmed one of the houseplants, therefore, new greenery in the bedroom 🙂
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video: sparking joy – working on conscious consumerism

I’ve been thinking about the things I buy — the things that add to my life and the things that make me cringe at the waste (mostly of space and money). I’ve been making a concerted effort to shop mindfully and really think about the things I bring into my life. Where will they fit in my home? How will they add to my state of being? Will they last or will I regret the purchase in 6 months? It’s a challenge, particularly because I have no one to answer to but myself (part of the reason I decided to document this process in the first place is to hold myself accountable). I’m learning and growing. There are some things I’ve purchased recently that I should have checked myself on, but I bought them anyway. I’ll try harder next time.

Now that I’ve rambled long enough, watch the video to learn more about the things don’t buy anymore and the things I’m working on as I move towards a more conscious lifestyle.

5 things: wishes (and delayed gratification)

5 things I'm wishing for

 

I made this collage a few days before the accident. These were the things I was craving, coveting, and yearning for… some are big purchases, some are simple pleasures, all are now on hold for the foreseeable future. Life is like that sometimes.
The tieks and the laptop are the biggest investments, and will likely need to be made regardless of the car-buying situation, but I’ll continue to make do with what I have for the time being and continue my research.

video: sparking joy – in my bag

I recorded this before the shiz hit the fan… so I give you *dun dun dun* a minimalist’s what’s in my bag video 🙂

Next week may be a little off-kilter. I’m starting the claims process and things may get a little rough. Enjoy and let me know how you handle your bag situation.

5 things: fall edition

5 things: fall edition
When I think of fall, I think of autumn hues and new things to write. Of course, Fall means NaNoWriMo and all things writing. I’m still debating whether that will mean a new story or a rebellious revision, but the season of the pen is among us!
Bold red lips (or very pale nudes) are also a big fall factor for me, as well as mustard-colored everything (starting with a brand new cardigan… because, hello, librarian here). A new notebook and some new scents round off my musts, and while pumpkin is the scent du jour for most this season, I find that ikea vanilla candles always send me to my happy place.

5 things: summer loves

Saying goodbye to summer by sharing some of my summer loves and faves (though it’s still hot as ever in Miami, there’s a sense that the season is changing).

5 things: summer loves

 

First up, my KeepCup! I have the saffron colored one and it makes me so happy. The color looks like a little baby duck and my barista gets a thrill every time I bring it in for a refill.
InkJoy gel pens. Total impulse buy from the campus bookstore. Mine look slightly different because they are a newer model than the ones shown above, but they are amazing. Love the inks, very bright and thick lines. I have the hot pink and neon green ones.
Marimo moss balls. I wanted something different for my home and I was inspired by More Melody’s video on Marimo Moss Care. Easy to care for and they look like little green pets.
RMS Buriti Bronzer. Even though I was less than thrilled when I first received my sample, I soon learned that I just needed to play with the application to get the right color. It has become a total staple in my routine and will probably continue into the autumn for a nice flush and coppery lids.
Lancome Juicy Shaker in Apri-CuteThis has been my color of the summer. It’s not green and it’s not cruelty free, but it has been a total guilty pleasure. I may use it on top of a darker lipstick, but will probably be returning to it next Spring.

5 things: minimalist accoutrements

Minimalism is many things. For me, it is both an aesthetic and a way of life. In many ways, I was always a minimalist, but there are elements of my life that do not reflect that as effectively as I would like. Therefore, while I do not subscribe to the extreme form of minimalism that embraces living with next to nothing and counting all the things, I have become a proponent of the kind of minimalism that embraces surrounding yourself with things that serve a purpose, even if that purpose is merely to bring joy. I refuse to call it a journey, but it is definitely a process of constant awareness and self editing.

The hardest part has been letting go of my compulsion to shop. I have no trouble with caring for things and making them last, but I have my triggers and one of them is my mother. She has a habit of shopping for the sake of shopping, as well as holding on to anything and everything because of the guilt associated with it. I had that guilt for a long time. It becomes ingrained in you; particularly, when you no longer have any use for an expensive item. I’ve started working on these habits, and encouraging my mom to do the same. Consequently, I’ve become more selective when I do buy a new item. Will it serve me for a long time? Is it worth the cost and quality? It has definitely curbed my spending on “cheap” thrills. Now, that’s not to say that I don’t shop sales or buy affordable clothes and shoes. I do. I just buy things that I really need or want.

In an effort to simplify and remain stylish, I’ve made a few “investments”. These 5 things have made life easier in the mornings when I’m rushing to go to work.

5 things: minimalist accoutrements

 

PICTURED

Cambridge Satchel Co. 13” satchel in moss – This bag will last me forever and has forced me to limit what I carry in my bag. I can also use it for work or play. The style is classic and so me.

Igloo lunch tote – I’ve gone through multiple lunch boxes, none of which seemed right. This one is pretty and perfect (I have a different design than the one pictured)

Mighty Wallet – Mine features Catwoman. It’s purple and sleek and fabulous. It also fits anywhere and is recyclable.

Invisibobbles – These are strong but they don’t make my head hurt and don’t snag. Plus, I can use them for just about any style, including updos.

Fitbit alta – I had a One for 3 years. I loved it, but I really wanted something I could wear on my wrist. It’s sleek and stylish, and has replaced my watch on most days.

What are some of your minimalist accoutrements? I’d love to know 🙂

vlog: in which I reveal my consumerism

I did it. I filmed an empties video. I’m not a strict lifestyle vlogger, but I do enjoy me some empties videos, and I like the fact that they’re like mini reviews of products rather than brand focused. Also, in moving towards a “minimalist” lifestyle, I am making a concerted effort to use up products, especially items I bought on a whim or just want to finish before moving on to something else. My goal is to get rid of the stuff I’ve accumulated in a strategic way and share my thoughts with others so they can make informed decisions. 🙂

Click through for a list of the products mentioned.

Also, in the spirit of decluttering, I joined Mercari. Currently have two Coach bags listed, if anyone’s interested 🙂.

Continue reading “vlog: in which I reveal my consumerism”

lifestyle: mini haul – detox market and sephora

It’s my birthday next week, so I’ve been a little spendy…

I really wanted to try the Suntegrity 5-in-1 tinted moisturizer sunscreen, but I didn’t want to spend $45 on another natural product that may or may not work for me, so I decided to try the Detox Market sample pack. For $9.99, the Detox Market lets you select up to 5 products to sample. Most of their products are high end, luxe, all natural, eco-concious beauty and skincare, which I’m all for… but I’m not willing to pay high end prices for something that may be all wrong for my skin. Their sample pack is perfect. I ordered the Suntegrity 5-in-1 in the shades Light and Golden Light, the RMS buriti bronzer, the Josh Rosebrook lift spray, and the Kahina eye serum.

Suntegrity 5-in-1 tinted moisturizer

Neither the light nor the golden light work for me. Both shades have an orange cast on my skin and require blending down my neck to look natural… while I like to protect my neck and decollete from the sun, I don’t appreciate having to blend a tinted product into my neckline. My first impression was that it smells and feels just like the Andalou Naturals Anti-Aging BB cream, which I used up last year. That product was not as orange, but I hated the slick feel it left on my skin. Suntegrity reminds me of that. If you have dry skin that isn’t neutral with yellow undertones, this product might work for you.

Verdict: I’ll stick to my current sunscreen options and keep hunting for a natural, tinted product.

RMS buriti bronzer

I like the color of this, but I think it will work best as an eyeshadow rather than a bronzer. I like the coppery shade, but it’s a little too dramatic for my face. I like to keep it subtle and this looks too bronze for cheeks. I really just wanted to sample RMS to see if the formulation worked with my skin. They use coconut in their products and I sometimes have a bad reaction to it, bronzer felt like an easy way to experiment as I tend to be less sensitive along the sides of my face.

Verdict: going to play with it until the sample runs out

Kahina eye serum

Why!??! Why do I have to like this so much?!?! It’s the most expensive product in the batch and I only picked it on a whim because I figured I would never buy it, but I LOVE it. I’ve been using the MyChelle Fabulous Eye Cream, but it’s not my favorite. I have a hard time finding eye products that don’t irritate my eyes and this one is perfect… except its $78.

Verdict: Wish list. I’m definitely getting this when I run out of the MyChelle.

Josh Rosebrook lift

Haven’t tried it yet, but the sample is so small I’m not sure it’s enough to make things happen. Will report back when I try it.

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