Friday, July 30, 2010

Random Inspiration

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Happy Weekend!

The IT List


Hooray for Friday! The "it" list is back with a great round up of all sorts of goodies on the web... be sure to visit all these lovelies blogs for tons of inspiration this weekend!

  • sweetie pie pumpkin noodle visits some of THE most fabulous boutiques and shops in Mill Valley and takes us along for the ride. She also hunts down amazing chandeliers along her way. Don't miss this goodness!
  • merci blah blah rounds up tons of gorgeous drape-style dresses from all over the interwebs. And not just once... but twice. Um, I'll take one of each!
  • good life for less gives us the highlights of her recent trip to Forever 21... these shoes were definitely a great find!
  • a spot of whimsy forks over a delicious dose of Mad Men style and photos. I swoon, just swoon for that show!
  • penguins gift is giving away a Stella & Dot bracelet for the little ladies in your life. So cute!
  • style your life puts together a casual outfit featuring an unexpected item - a pencil skirt. I just love this look - so chic!
  • spry on the wall gives us a practical and affordable version of this amazing outfit from Isaac Mizrahi's Spring 2010 line.
  • the hillside home just bought a new house and is planning, planning, planning. SO FUN! Join her as they start picking out colors, finishes, etc. I just love the adventure of a new house!
  • john's journal outlines a simple but fantastic looking diy roman shade project. You will absolutely want to try this. It turned out amazing!
  • elena's custom designs makes a custom pillow out of a scarf/handkerchief. I just LOVE this idea!
  • really cute stuff is featuring their "family style" notecards... a great gift for friends or teachers or just to have for yourself for thank you notes or notes to teachers. I love these ideas!
  • good look for less is offering wardrobe consults at half price through the end of today... hurry and snag yours before they go back to full price for fall!
Have a great weekend... interested in learning more about the "it" list? Email goodlifeforless @ !

Thursday, July 29, 2010

We Interrupt This Regularly Scheduled Post

to bring you this French Connection dress, courtesy of Dilly Dallas.
That is all.


Dreamy Drapery

No, I'm not talkin bout curtain panels, Willis, I'm talkin bout dresses that sport a caftan silhouette. As a wise man once said, I can't get enough of your love, babe.

From Style By Kling

Rachel Roy - it's like the drapey dress above on the left and the lace dress on the right had one drunken night in the men's room at a bar, and 9 months later had a baby, and it was the lace shruggy caftan (caftany shrug?) above. Doesn't matter to me, cuz I just know I LOVE IT.

More Style By Kling - Orange you glad I didn't say banana? Okay, I admit, I have no idea what that means, other than I am JUST into my first cup of coffee, it's 6:47 a.m., and my brain is not awake yet.

Above three photos of Louise Roe, whom I had never heard of until I saw a post about her on In Staley's Atmosphere (ch-ch-check her post on Mz. Roe here), and while you're there, browse around because her blog is The Cutes - she also has a post she did the otha day on Olivia Palermo's apartment, the beyotch (Olivia, not Staley). See? Do you SEE how my coffee has STILL not kicked in? I am also blaming the lovely ladies of Wine Night last night, and if my stupid computer was not still being a d-bag, I would post pics of my sis and me dressed up and red ta go before we met everyone at the Westport Cafe (spring pea ravioli - you had me at brown butter sauce...) What was it that wise man once said again? Oh yeah....

Dear Barry - that is a WHOLE lotta pink turtleneck, velvet and sequins. It may even be too much for me....

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Stuff We Would Kiss On the Mouf.

Go here. Read this post. Get ready to swoon.


I have come across several drapey confections in the past few days, and the more I see, the more I love them. Pretty sure this Vionnet dress that Jessica Biel is ROCKING (in my humble opinion) is one of those dresses people will either love or hate. I am in the love camp. Much like Christina Ricci, she just keeps getting better on the red carpet. Props to her and her stylist.

The GORGEOUS Nini Nguyen, from Nini Style, in a black draped dress from her new collaborative collection with Nha Khahn.
The equally gorge Nha Khahn in an equally dreamy dress.
Uh, this fab dress? Is 2 yards of draped silk - girlfriend did it herself. Check out the deets here.

Love the raw hem, love it over the black skinnies and kickass boots. This is seriously chic.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Thank You, Hollywood...

for listening to my original suggestion of this guy to play the title role of the American version of Girl With the Dragon Tattoo:

As soon as I started reading the book, he was the ONLY guy I pictured in the role of Mikael Blomqvist. Yippeeee!!! Will be interesting to see who they end up casting in the role of Lisbeth Salander. My opinion? Cast an unknown, or get Noomi Rapace, who played the role in the Swedish version of the film.

Oh, one more suggestion? DON'T EFF UP THE MOVIE, HOLLYWOOD - the Swedish version ROCKED.


WWD: Jammies

Other than the shoes that will likely be walking the plank in favor of the comfortable wedges I brought "just in case", this outfit feels like I'm wearing PJ's.

Speaking of jammies, I really miss my old private office with the door. It was much more conducive to taking under the desk, aka George Costanza, naps at lunch.

I digress to impress.

The most comfortable shirt ever: The Maxx
Black satin cargo pants you can't see: H&M
Stripedy Stripe Stripe shoes: A few seasons ago. Read: I have no idea.
Big fat Versace-looking Napier vintage necklace: Jewish resale shop $6...holla
Other assorted jewries
Hair that is getting did tonight.....busted looking today

So, yes, perhaps a bit of a Yawny Kitaen, boring outfit but comfortable. Did I mention that?

Here I go again on my own.

Annnnnnnnd, now you will sing Whitesnake all day. You're welcome.


Honestly - WHO THROWS A SHOE???!!! (one of my favorite random lines from Austin Powers that no one ever gets but I think is funny and giggle to myself each time I say it, but I digress...) What I meant to say was, Honestly - YOU ARE WASTING AWAY BEFORE OUR VERY EYES!!! Fo realz, Skinny Minnie! That outfit is The Cutes, and your necklathe? Need. GIMME. Do not make me punch you in the stomach, steal it and run away. I will do it in a heartbeat.

I can't tell if that's the same shirt I wore yesterday or not - does yours have an elasticky band around the waist? No matter- you look goooooood. And your hurr busted? I DOUBT THAT, jerk.


...and the Winner Is....

Entry number 2 - DAWN!

Delta Dawn...what's the flower you have on...
This is the Dawning of the Age of Aquarius, Age of Aquaaa-reeee-ussssss.....
Oh say can you seeeeeeeee by the Dawn's early liiiiiiiiiiiiiight...

Congrats Dawn, you are the winner of a BRAND NEW CHRYSLER CORDOVA! Okay, not really - but you ARE the winner of all the stuff that we said in our "Yay - We FINALLY Hit 100 Followers" giveaway. Drop us a line at merciblahblah at, and we'll work out the deets.

In honor of Dawn, I give you the original Brit-Brit, Miss Tanya Tucker:

Woo hooooo!!!!

Good vs. Evil

I know, I know - I shouldn't do this because I'm always annoyed by those tabloid mags that perpetuate the feud between Aniston and Angelina, when you turn to the article that says, "Jen's a Mom!", and the the next article in the mag is "Angelina's a Saint!", but I've come across these two photos in the past week, and couldn't help but think how much they represent the good girl next door versus the homewrecker who wants to be the next Maleficent, espesh with the wind kicked up around that swirling red Versace.

Bottom line? They BOTH look gorgeous, in completely different ways. It's interesting, both women have perfected the art of simplicity, from hair and accessories to clothing, and both have been accused of not changing it up enough, or wearing enough color, but I say, if it works for them and they can still carry it off, why not?

I am Team Aniston all the way, and I think Jen looks better in this Valentino than she has in a long time. Not that she looks bad in anything else, I just think she looks especially gorge here. I would love it if the skirt were to her knees, but beyond that, she is fab and I'm SURE we would be besties if we were ever to cross paths. Jen, call me.....

I hate to admit this because I'm NOT an Angelina fan, but come ON - she was born to wear that dress, in that wind storm. That's eye candy if I ever saw it.

Monday, July 26, 2010


September 25 - return of my favorite show EVAH, Dexter. Do NOT watch the above if you are still watching last season. I'm just sayin...

Can't. Wait.

And just for good measure, let's throw in this one too...

But what the EFF, Showtime - Californication isn't back until 2011??!!!!!!



Um, bescuse me, This Free Bird.

You did not just leave a comment on our Giveaway post saying that you chatted up Scott Speedman. All casual and stuff. THAT should be the title of your blog: I Chatted Up Scott Speedman. Jealous?

Consider it. It has a nice ring to it.

Not only is he the dreamiest of the dreamy but he was just on the BEST SHOW THAT EVER EXISTED in the non-reality tv category. Although, I'm sorry, Felicity was very, very real. How else can you explain me crying every single episode? Even reruns. Every time. Every time reruns.

Ben.....sweet, sweet, complicated Ben.



Stuff We Would Kiss On the Mouf: The Gilded Age

Just browsing through the August Lucky mag last night, and came upon a gorgeous shoot called The Gilded Age, which has made me rededicate my commitment to the sequin. I think our faithful readers know by now that I am mad for a sparkle or sequin, and for the love of Pia Zadora, these looks just reaffirm the reason behind my madness. Can't wait to mix some of these looks from the clothes in my own closet, and add in some ikat, embroidery, boots and scarves for fall.
This. Is. Delicious. Sequin wrap dress worn as a vest? Genius.

Dreamy ocean blues in chiffon and sequin? Shut. Up.

Slouchy military-inspired boyfriend jacket? Check. Sequin shell? Check check. Wide-legged trousers? You complete me.

Sequin cardi + sequin dress = match made in heaven.

Sequin band jacket, gold la-MAY shorts AND vintagey coin necklace? You need to build a bridge and get over yourself.

Happy Monday!

Don't forget to sign up for our 100 Followers giveaway - deadline is noon today!!!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Don't Forget!

You have until noon on Monday, July 26th to enter the 100 Followers Giveaway. Get to it.


Friday, July 23, 2010

Designing Women: Peetzi Handcrafted Jewelry

Think of this new feature, Designing Women, not so much as a showcase of southern women dressed in giant shoulder pads, sporting crankin' big mall hair and way too much blush and eye makeup, but rather, as a way for us to introduce you to some of our fabulous readers and friends that we have been lucky enough to make through MerciBlahBlah.

Our first designing woman is Jen from Peetzi Handcrafted Jewelry, and as well as being crafty (insert Beastie Boys music here...she's craaaafty, and she's JUST MY TYPE), she is funny, gorgeous, and creative - kind of like Amy and me. KIDDING! I kid! I'm a kidder! Anyhoozle, wivout further adooooo, here's how our conversation with Mz. Jen went...

Shan: So you're a jewelry designer - how did you get started? Do you have formal training?
Jen: I've always loved being "crafty." Making things. DIY projects. I started playing around with rocks about 5 years ago and something just clicked. I've always loved, loved, loved jewelry ever since I was a wee thing. My Grandma had loads of beautiful jewelry that my sister and I used to dress up with, so it's in my blood. I don't have any formal training, just a ton of books and bead magazines and lots of hours of trial and error.


Shan: Do you have a favorite piece/pieces that you've designed? My favey crockett is the Sadee. She purty.
Jen: I really do have an emotional attachment to a lot of my pieces. : ) Silly but true! My favorites change all the time. If I have to pick ONE favorite, it would probably be a piece named Harper...which I ended up keeping. No soup for you!


Shan: You use a lot of turqwaaaz and coral. Do YOU like how I spell turqwaaaaz? No, for reals, are those your favorite stones to work with?
Jen: I LOVE turqwaaaz. Funny, that's how my daughter says it too! First, because it's just a beautiful stone. And second, because it comes in a lot of variations, depending on where it's mined. Some is bright blue, some more green and some has a lot of brown in it. Coral is the coral, red coral. You get the idea. I think I also adore turquoise and coral because I love stones with texture. Some of my other favs are freshwater pearls and anything Swarovski. I'm a big fan of the sparkle! A lot of the time I design a piece around a stone or pearl. I love the ones that are especially rustic and lumpy.


Shan: Where/how do you draw inspiration for your designs? Do you collaborate with customers/clients, or are they totally your independent design? Do you lie awake at night thinking up fabulous new designs?
Jen: I get inspiration for designs everywhere! I keep a notebook to jot down ideas and sometimes when I'm looking at catalogs of stones, it will just hit me. (Yes, I said "catalog of stones." Receiving a new catalog of rocks is as exciting for me as the new J. Crew catalog)! A lot of my pieces are things I've created specifically for a customer. I think this is a completely different challenge. There's a certain pressure in creating something special for a specific person and I'm a perfectionist when it comes to my work. Jewelry is such a personal thing and you won't ever wear anything you don't really LOVE.

I DO obsess over designs. And sometimes, it keeps me up half the night! Anyone who does something "creative" for a living, whether it's writing or painting or designing, has a fear of not being able to come up with an idea. That's part of the reason why I started doing a lot of research on fashion. It gets the creative juices flowing.

And, not to repeat myself, but I do use the actual stone at times to inspire what I come up with. Sometimes, I create something that just doesn't work out the way I saw it in my head. But sometimes, it comes out even better!


Shan: Do you ever get "jewelry-maker's block?"
Jen: Definitely! And sometimes, I get stuck in a rut where I design something only to discover that it's very similar to a piece I've done before. That's when the box of wine gets tapped and...voila...the block is broken.

Amy: What did you want to be when you grew up?
Jen: Well, for many years, I wanted to be a journalist when I grew up. Maybe even a tv journalist. But I was worried about writer's block and changed my mind. Then I wanted to be a marine biologist. But seeing as how I live in COLORADO, I decided that might be more difficult then I originally thought. For too many years, I worked in a bank doing credit analysis. I hate math. I hate accounting. I am much better suited doing something that gets my creative juices flowing.


Amy: Do you believe there is life on other planets?
Jen: I'm pretty sure with the universe being as big as it is, we are not alone...........

Amy: One piece of advice for someone getting started?
Jen: Be persistent! The work isn't only in the making and designing but also in getting the word out there. Don't get discouraged! If you put the time and the effort into something you love, it will pay off.


Amy: Red, White or Pink Box Wine?
Jen: Ooooooo, yes please! But preferably a Red box!

Shan: And finally, when will we see the Shannan and Amy added to your line? Or maybe the ShanAmy? Or the MerciBlahBlah? I am on PINS AND NEEDLES waiting!!!!

Jen: I am ALWAYS looking for new names...I kinda used up my entire family and friend base. The MerciBlahBlah...has a nice ring to it!

Shan and Ames

Don't forget to enter the 100 Follower giveaway if you haven't already done so!

The IT List


The "it" list blazes on... don't you love Fridays? Take some time today or this weekend to check out the best of the web here!

  • merci blah blah is talking fall... her fall wish list to be exact. I love each and every one of her picks. I can feel the leaves crunching under feet already...
  • the hillside home puts together a lovely summer/garden/cottage inspiration montage. It's just dreamy...
  • style your life puts together a casual summer look for the guys. Ladies, raise your hand if shopping for your husband falls under your duties. It does in my household!
  • spry on the wall puts together her take on Nina Ricci's Resort 2011 collection. This is pure genius!
  • john's journal gathers beach chic inspiration from planet blue and then puts together outfits that are much more affordable. Love these!
  • a spot of whimsy gives some food for thought for the women that want to do it all (this would be me...). I loved this quiet moment.
  • penguin's gift has a great stationary giveaway. Check it out... you have a few days to enter still!
  • elena's custom designs offers a great grab-and-go baby shower gift, check this out!
  • one hundred inspirations lays out this Olivia Palermo outfit for less than $100. I love this!
  • good life for less is participating in the 30/30 Challenge... that is 30 wardrobe pieces mixed and matched for 30 days. See how she does it!
  • sweetie pie pumpkin noodle features her top 10 picks for earrings... it's impossible to choose a favorite, they are all so lovely!
Happy Weekend!


Interested in learning more about the "it" list? Email goodlifeforless @!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

WWD: Stripedy Stripe Stripes

Alert the meeeeedia: I maaaaaaay have a new go to comfy outfit.

But, I have a problem. I cannot stop buying stripes. I've tried. Not very hard, but I have tried. Does going a week without buying more count? Yes? Yes, it does, you say? Thanks. I love you long time.
Top: The Maxx
Cuffed Cargo Pantalones: NY & Co.
Shoes: F21
Jewries: vintage "bubblegum in gold nugget", bejeweled gift from mi madre & I have no idea
P.S. You should enter our contest for people who like to be awesome.
Uh, do not be alarmed, but you have a SERIOUS case of The Cutes, and an even SERIOUSER case of The EFFING SKINNIES, you jerk you.

Giveaway! Free Kittens!

YESSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!! After sleepless nights, numerous tequila shooters and much wringing of hands, we FINALLY hit 100 followers. The "Holy Crap I Never Thought We'd See the Day" Giveaway is OPEN. As thanks to ye who follow, I wanted to do a little giveaway gift basket o goodness.

Starting today, please leave a comment telling us either....

a) the weirdest, most random factoid about yourself (Shan's: I have met and chatted with a serial killer, for realz - but that's a story for another day) (Ames here: wow...morbid town. Um, some people apparently can eat asparagus and not have the pee stank of death. I am not one of those people)


2) any brush with fame you have had (Shanz: the GORGEOUS Marlin Perkins from Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom) (Ames: I cannot top that but one of the for real ones: backstage and afterparty with Depeche Mode. For funs: Ross Perot, Brian Boitano or the guy that played the sidekick to Walker Texas Ranger's own Chuck Freaking Norris. Jealous?).

So here goes, a few of our favorite things that will be going into a gift basket o goodness to the lucky weiner...errrr...winner...

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo book, first in the triolgy by Stieg Larsson. If you have not read it, DO IT. One of the best books I've read in ages. If you have read it and you're the winner, well, we'll discuss an appropriate replacement book. Urban Decay's Eyeshadow Primer Potion - hands down the BEST beauty product I use. You. Will. Become. ADDICTED.

Ames: Shan is right. It's like Eyeball crack cocaine.

Starbucks gift card - do I REALLY need to 'splain this one?

Shan and I talked about some other faveys and decided to just do a Choose Your Own Adventure prize. So, $25 Gift Card to your choice of the above. Need some F21, Sephora or DSW action in your life? This is where you'll find it.

There may also be a few random surprise goodies thrown in for good measure, too.

The contest is only open to followers, so if you're not one yet, whatchooo waiting for? Sign up! Here's the dealio - leave a comment with your name, e-mail address, and your weirdest, most random fact or brush with fame. We will then draw the weiner via random number generator, the winner will be crowned KING OF THE FOLLOWERS, and a ticker tape parade will be thrown in their honor. Okay, screw the ticker tape parade - but they WILL receive said Gift Basket O Goodness.

You have until noon on Monday, July 26 to enter, and the winner will be announced on Tuesday the 27th. Now go forth and enter!

Shannan and Amy

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Random Inspiration

Lace dress o wonder - from Ish and Chi

Sweet wind cries Mary I love this layered ethnic boho eastern Indian cowboy chic. From Pretty Pleased.

And now, for something COMPLETELY different, could this office ensemble with tie and matching clutch BE more adorbs? Guh. Get your hiney to Emerson Made to buy it.

Da Bomb (Pop Martini) - from Kinsey Michaels.

More Hippie Chic from Fashion Toast.