Tag Archives: shopping

Lil Red’s Holiday Shopping Pro Tips

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Lil Red’s Holiday Shopping Pro Tips

Helloooo! There are some who holiday shop in the summer, there are those who wait until the last minute, and there might be a group of you who is getting their shopping done now, like myself. No matter what your shopping style, purchasing gifts for your loved ones can be a big task. No one wants to give a dud of a gift and this can be a huge stresser if you have someone on your list who’s difficult to shop for.

Lucky for all of you, Lil Red is an absolute pro at holiday shopping and I’m here to break down some of my favorite tips to make your experience much easier. Check it out:

Listen Up:

When trying to get inspired with gift ideas, I make an extra effort to put my listening ears on. For example, I purchased a gift for my mom this year because she flat out said in conversation that she would like this specific thing. Done. If you’re struggling for ideas, spark up a chat with the person you’re shopping for, because the answer might come a lot easier than you think. Discuss favorite things, favorite previous gifts or experiences, and the like and you should have a firm idea of what to purchase by the end of it.

Make A List:

I know that I put this suggestion in my shopping tips every year but that’s because it’s important. Keeping organized while completing your shopping is key because a jumbled mess just means extra stress. Write down everyone who you need to buy for, list some ideas of what you would like to gift them, and cross them off once the task is complete. This will also help you when you are making your rounds in store and online because it will give you a better idea of where to purchase what and you won’t end up back at the same place a million more times.

There’s No Shame In Gift Cards:

I always used to think that gift cards were a cop out but I have grown quite fond of purchasing them for gift giving occasions. Whether it be a ten dollar Starbucks gift card along with other goodies or treating the giftee to a night out for dinner and a movie – gift cards can go a long way. Gift cards are a great add on or full gift and it makes your shopping experience a lot easier if you are coming up short for ideas.

Give An Experience:

What do you give to the person who has it all? How about an experience! Take your favorite sports nut to a game. What about a spa day for your mom? Or take your favorite body modified blogger to the tattoo shop for the afternoon! Haha, either way, gifting experiences is a sure fire way to please even the most difficult person to shop for and you will both have happy memories to cherish afterwards.

And Remember…

Yes, holiday shopping can be stressful. But, it should be fun too! Being able to treat your loved ones to something special is a beautiful thing. Remember that, and your shopping experience will start feeling a whole lot better.

What are some of your tips and tricks for holiday shopping? Who is done with their shopping already? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

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Holiday Shopping Head Start: Baby Niece Edition

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Holiday Shopping Head Start: Baby Niece Edition

Hi! We are on a fast track to the holiday season and it is definitely that time of the year where I like to start getting my Christmas shopping in order. I always prefer to get my shopping done in November so that when December rolls around, all I have to do is sit back, relax, and be thankful that I beat the crazy rushes in the stores and ordered gifts online with ample time for them to arrive.

This year, there is a new addition in the family to shop for – my baby niece, Valerie Jane. Val was born in the beginning of March and she is the apple of everyone’s eye. This includes her two pups at home, Tydus and Winston! Valerie loves her big brothers and animals in general so when I saw this darling Fisher-Price Bounce and Spin Puppy at Walmart, I just had to get it for her. Check it out:

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^^^ And, as always, I have no rights to this video!

Valerie is a very active little lady and, nine times out of ten, you can find her crawling about and playing with her toys. I thought that the bounce and spin puppy combined the best of both worlds for her – her very own doggy friend to ride on as well as something that is very physical to help wear her out for nap time! This puppy dog teaches all kinds of cool stuff like numbers, colors, and letters and it also sings songs while improving the baby’s balance. At fifty bucks, I thought that it was a steal and it will be something that Val can enjoy for a long time.

Will baby V remember her puppy from her auntie when she’s older? Probably not. But, I will certainly remember watching her play on it and I cannot wait for her first Christmas! :*)

Are you an early or last minute holiday shopper? What do you like to gift for babies or children? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Fall Is In The Air OOTD

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Fall Is In The Air OOTD

Hi! Today, I would like to present a very special OOTD article with pictures compliments of my dear friend, Markus, who has graced lifewithlilred in two previous posts. With autumn in full swing in good ol’ Ohio, we decided that it was high time to hit up Hinkley Park and have some fall fun by exploring the beautiful grounds and having a photo shoot adventure. Working with Markus is always a blast and he gives me exactly what I’m looking for every time.

With this look, I wanted to create a classic fall outfit that is perfect for wandering around the last few farmer’s markets of the season or taking a stroll downtown with the fallen leaves and branches crunching beneath your feet. This look seen below is quite simple but the bold chartreuse sweater with the stark white contrast creates a statement and an outfit that will be easy for all of you to replicate. Take a look:

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Who? What? Wear?

What I love the most about styling outfits for fall is all of the possibilities that come with it. From creating visual interest through layering as well as all of the cute cold weather accessories, my closet literally runneth over with options to keep myself warm and chic all fall long. To some, layering is a scary feat but practice makes perfect and when done right, it takes a fairly simple look into a head turning ensemble. Now, let Lil Red get you right.

The key to good layering comes with a close evaluation of two things. 1) The heaviness of the piece. And 2) The material that it is made out of. You never want to layer two items of equal thickness with each other, because it makes for a very bulky silhouette. Rather, you take something with contrasting levels of warmth to keep yourself from looking like a marshmallow.

For example, the Cynthia Rowley sweater that I chose is of medium heaviness. It is definitely thicker but I wouldn’t call it a chunky sweater because it still provides some degree of a shape. Knowing this, I opted for a thinner jacket to tie the look together. The tan Lucky Brand topper jacket paired marvelously with the bold hue of my sweater and it was fitted enough that any slouchiness on the bottom layer was camouflaged. It was also an optimal coat to use because, while it was quite chilly the morning of the shoot, it warmed up as the sun came out and it was easy to slip off once it became unnecessary.

Another important thing to remember when layering is the material of the pieces you are going to use. You don’t want to wear the same material for each layering piece because that will also lead to a heavy look that isn’t the most flattering. It is better to create texture with your look so, instead of pairing a coat with a sweatshirt style fabric over my sweater, I opted for the sleek faux fur topper jacket. The slinky material over the sturdier fabric of the sweater gave me a lovely shape, provided visual interest, and kept me warm just through effective layering.

One final word about layering is to not forget about your bottom half to prevent looking too top heavy. I always prefer a skinny jean, anyways, but it is definitely the way to go when layering. You also want to sport a killer pair of shoes (Flaming platforms, perhaps?!) so that your look doesn’t just stop at your top half. You want your entire OOTD to be cohesive and that’s sometimes easy to forget when you’re focused on layering!

I love my Fall Is In The Air OOTD and styling your own Lil Red inspired look will be a snap. Choose your favorite bold sweater, a thinner jacket on top, your skinniest pair of jeans, and an awesome pair of chunky boots and you’re all set!

What are some of your tips and tricks when it comes to layering? How do you rock a statement sweater? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Accessory Story: Seed & Sage Necklace Edition

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Accessory Story: Seed & Sage Necklace Edition

Hello! This is the last of my most recent haul from TJMaxx – leave it to me to only need one thing and come out with an armful of stuff! But, damnit, I just couldn’t help myself. You all know that Lil Red loves her cold weather shopping! And, this necklace by Seed & Sage is one that I am particularly excited about because for 1) it’s gorgeous and for 2) I have had my eye on it for a while and I purchased it at a clearance price. Score! Check it out:

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Despite being an atheist to the max, I grew up in the Roman Catholic church and have always loved religious iconography. I have a beautiful collection of rosary style necklaces and I even have a rosary blessed by Pope Francis from when my brother and sister in law honeymooned in Italy. TJMaxx often seems to have religious themed necklaces in stock and I find myself swooning over them with every shopping trip.

The Virgin Mary necklace by Seed & Sage that I bought has been at the store for quite some time in a variety of sizes. I never felt a strong urge to try it on until it was in the clearance section and I just had to give it a go. Once it was out of the case, it was even more stunning up close and I saw that it had images on the front and back, which made it feel more unique.

Although I had a bit of a difficult time getting the necklace clasp to work because of my claws, it was a small price to pay for such a lovely piece. The length of the necklace is perfect and it will hit right at the end of a V-neckline. But, more importantly, the images on both sides are lovely and the colors are stunning, especially when it hits the light! I am definitely looking forward to wearing my new Seed & Sage necklace soon and am happy to have added it into my jewelry collection for well under twenty bucks! 😀

Where do you like to purchase jewelry from? How do you rock a funky necklace? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Hats Off: Norla Canada Beanie Edition

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Hats Off: Norla Canada Beanie Edition

Salutations! One of the best things about cold weather is all of the darling cold weather accessories, of course! Hats, scarves, faux fur collars, and fingerless gloves – oh my. All of which make up a cold weather accessory arsenal that will keep you warm, cozy, and totally cute all winter long. With a doctor for a mom, I grew up hearing her say that the most heat escapes your body through your head so that means I should probably buy a ton of hats, right? Right. Lol, check out this little beauty by Norla Canada and let’s discuss:

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I always love when the fall and winter season rolls around at TJMaxx because that means that their wonderful cold weather department resurfaces. We’re talking racks, hangers, and shelves filled to the brim with boots, jackets, and all of the knitted accessories at a fraction of their original price. I found my new Norla Canada beanie during my last TJ’s shopping trip and I am very excited to bust it out once the temperature drops a hair more.

Normally, I am not a huge pink girl and opt for my all black everything approach, instead. But, there was something so sweet about this dusty baby pink beanie and I just couldn’t say no to it. The slouchy fit, the cotton candy coloring, and the softest faux fur pompom I’ve ever felt were all key factors in this purchase and it definitely has been making me rethink my opposition to the color pink. Granted, I don’t think you’ll ever see me in a hot pink sweater but, I guess a few cute accessories can’t hurt!

How do you rock cold weather accessories? What is a color that you’re ambivalent about? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

It’s In The Bag: Steve Madden Edition

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It’s In The Bag: Steve Madden Edition

Hi! I have always loved Steve Madden. In fact, my very first pair of heels that I purchased during eighth grade was a pair of Steve’s and, since then, a special place in my heart was dedicated to the brand. So, whenever I can find any Steve Madden shoes, bags, or accessories when shopping at TJMaxx, it is very exciting! Affordable and adorable, Steve Madden is a brand for all and I am so enamored with my new black and plaid backpack from my latest haul. Check it out:

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Fashion forward backpacks have become quite popular over the past few years and I have invested in a few, myself. Cute, convenient, and easy to carry these bags are definitely not your run of the mill backpacks that you tote your huge textbooks in to school. Unless you get a big and sturdy enough one, of course! Rather, the backpack trend is perfect for hauling along your essentials, totally hands free which makes them an optimum choice during travel or walking your commute to work in the city.

My new Steve Madden backpack screams fall fun and I love the jet black and red plaid combo along with a floral scarf tied on for some visual contrast. Shaped in a more bucket style, this bag runs deep and probably could fit a textbook or two if need be! I will always prefer a purse to a backpack no matter how fun the trend is. But, this pack will be a gorgeous fall staple paired with a skater skirt, knitted tights, and cardigan for a school girl chic look that will give Blair Waldorf a run for her money!

Are you a fan of the backpack trend? How do you incorporate one into your outfits? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

If The Shoe Fits: Fergalicious By Fergie Ankle Boots Edition

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If The Shoe Fits: Fergalicious By Fergie Ankle Boots Edition

Greetings! When I shop in store at TJMaxx, I never seem to be able to find any shoes there and purchase them on their website, instead. So, you can only imagine my surprise when a pair of shoes in store literally made me clutch my pearls. And, when anything gets this reaction from me, nine times out of ten it ends up in my shopping cart. Check out these pretty little babies by the one and only Fergie Ferg and let’s discuss:

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A girl can never have too many pairs of black ankle booties because they are all so different yet so remarkably similar, lol. But, I have to say, this new pair is probably the most unique one I have out of all of them. It’s no secret that Lil Red loves all things edgy and punk so when I saw these studded, buckled beauties it was damn near impossible to say no. Granted, I have many a studded and buckled pair of booties but none with all over visual interest going on, which made this Fergalicious number a must.

Of course, these will be perfect for marching through the fallen leaves this autumn. However, I am actually more excited to wear these during the warm weather. This past summer, I took a shining to wearing my ankle boots along with a pair of short shorts and sweet frilly socks for a fun twist on a simple OOTD. It definitely spiced up a basic shorts and a T-shirt ensemble and my new ankle booties will be perfect for that once the hot weather begins again. Love!

How do you rock ankle boots? What is your go to pair of shoes in the fall? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah