We Are Art

(I love this video: it reminds me of Edward Scissorhands and gives me chills.)

My relationship with art is fairly straightforward: apart from an oddly comprehensive knowledge of Michaelangelo thanks to a very specific course I took in college called, yes, “Michelangelo”, I have next-to-zero “technical” knowledge about art…but I definitely like what I like, and I know what I like the moment I see it.

What’s hanging on our walls right now: everything from a $30 print we picked up at the Union Square market years ago to a wooden Balinese headboard we bought on our honeymoon to a vintage Coca-Cola sign inherited from my parents. The only thing that all of our pieces have in common: I love them. They make me happy every single time I look at them, and I honestly couldn’t care less whether they’re fancy, or cool, or would hold up to an “expert’s” ideas about what’s “good” and what’s not.

And I really, truly believe that that’s what art should do: it should make you love your space that much more.

Remember a couple of weeks ago, when I went to San Francisco? The purpose of the trip: a summit with a bunch of other bloggers to celebrate the launch of Art.com's redesigned site. The purpose of the redesign: to make the experience of finding art that you love fun and exciting, no matter your budget or knowledge base (in fact, one of their key messages is “To rid the art world of risk, anxiety, and snobbery, one piece at a time.” I love this so much).

How do they do this? They’ve taken the old site (which offered anything and everything art-related you could possibly want…but was a little overwhelming) and made it infinitely more inspiring and easy to navigate. We’re talking curated collections (I’ll be curating a gallery at some point over the next few months, so stay tuned), tools that enable you to mount your picks on virtual walls (you can even import an image of your own space) so you can see what they look like “in real life”, and suggestions organized by inspiring spaces (like “Wanderlust Morocco” and “Modern Man Cave”).

P.S. Want to see the piece that I chose as my contribution to the blogger gallery at the summit? It’s the above limited-edition stretched-canvas Rodel Gonzalez, and is called “In The Garden" - I chose it to hang in the foyer of our home-to-be, which I’ve referred to from Day 1 as “The Alice In Wonderland House.” True story.

Back To Basics

I’ve had it with my skin. Had it!

You’ve heard me moaning about my oft-troublesome skin from time to time: the post-pregnancy period, what with the tidal waves of crazy hormones and all, has been less-than-kind to my face, and now with the weather turning…

I’ve had it.

I’ve tried lots of products and potions over the years, with varying results: some work, some don’t, some work temporarily but then sort of peter out…and I’d like to find a comprehensive (and affordable) routine that works for the long-term. So I’m taking it all back to basics, and going for facial skincare products that are specifically designed for sensitive skin, free of dyes, chemicals, irritants, and anything else with the potential to send my pores into a tizzy.

For the remainder of 2012, I’m partnering up with Simple Skincare to bring you tips, tricks, giveaways, and information on how to bring out the absolute best in your skin (and with 58% of women classifying their skin as “sensitive”, I’m assuming there are a lot of you out there who feel as I do). Simple is new to the U.S. market (I remember using their products during my brief time living in London), and they’ve launched 13 core products specifically for sensitive skin.

Simple also teamed up with goal keeper of the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team, Hope Solo, to share her advice on managing sensitive skin through balanced lifestyle choices. Learn more – and enter for a chance to win an all-inclusive trip to Los Angeles – at www.EscapeWithHope.com.

P.S. The top photo is of the Simple Cleansing Facial Wipes  packed into my travel kit – I took them with me to Canada so as to avoid the whole traveling-with-liquids thing, and loved them, especially that they’re oil & alcohol free.

P.P.S. Do you have sensitive skin? Tell me your troubles in the comments! I’ll do my best to address any specific issues or questions you have in upcoming posts.

Simple Skincare is a sponsor of Ramshackle Glam.

Summer Vacation Style With LOFT

Ogunquit Trip from Jordan Reid on Vimeo.

Every year, we try to make it to Ogunquit (the town in Maine where we got married; that video is from our trip last summer) for at least one weekend. This year our travel plans are sort of up in the air what with the total life upheaval and all, but we’re still going to do our best to make it work. I need me some lobster rolls, mini golf, and seaside restaurants where “dinner attire” means capris and flip-flops.

Just in time for summer, LOFT is giving away 3 $500 gift cards to spend on fabulous warm-weather pieces (head over to my Pinterest page to check out a few LOFT looks I chose to inspire my summer vacation style). To enter, follow LOFT on Pinterest and create a style board showcasing your favorite LOFT picks for your #1 vacation destination (click here for full contest entry rules).

Method “High Five A Rainbow” (Plus $100 Gift Card)

Weird little joy of mine: buying a brand-new bottle of hand wash and placing it next to the sink. I love how it looks; I love trying out a new scent; I love feeling all virtuous washing my hands fifty-six times a day (a slightly obsessive habit I developed when I gave birth to a) protect my newborn from germs and b) protect myself, because I was so devastatingly exhausted that had I managed to catch a cold on top of it all I would have just given up, handed Kendrick our offspring, and crawled under the changing table until spring came along).

Anyway, Method’s hand wash (in the Cucumber or Sweet Water scents) is what I’ve been using for…oh, years now. Ever since I first spotted the bottle on a drugstore shelf and picked it up figuring it would be way too pricey for my taste, and was pleasantly surprised to find that it was adorably packaged, totally didn’t smell like Clorox misted with raspberries and sparkles (as a lot of hand washes can, no?), and affordable.

And! Every Method hand wash is formulated withouttriclosan (a chemical found in many comparable products that’s presently under FDA review, and that Method believes is unnecessary - and potentially harmful - overkill), made with biodegradable, naturally derived ingredients, and contain Vitamin E and aloe.

Check out the video above and head over to Method’s Facebook page to guess exactly how much hand soap went into the making of that rainbow. The entry with the closest guess (without going over) will win $100 to use on soap.com and their very own rainbow of hand wash. Ten runner ups will win a $50 gift card, and fans can guess daily for more chances to win.

Method is a sponsor of Ramshackle Glam.

Method “Say No To Jugs” Photo Contest And Giveaway

This is my laundry pile, more often than not. You’ve seen it before. (Hey, give me a break: there is someone currently residing in my apartment who goes through up to five outfits a day, depending on his mood.)

You know, Kendrick and I were sorting our clothes to send out to the laundromat the other day, and I said, “wow, in a month or so I’ll be doing all this myself.” And in return, he gave me a “aw, sweetie, that really sucks” grimace.

I mean…is he kidding?! He’s kidding, right? I could not possibly be more excited about the prospect of having a washer/dryer of my very own to do with what I will. You New Yorkers without laundry rooms in your building know what I’m talking about: it’s a dream, the idea of coming in from a rainy day and being able to throw my jeans right into the wash, or getting into toasty, straight-from-the-dryer sheets at night, or knowing for certain that my favorite t-shirt will not be returned to me shrunk down to a size more appropriate for my six-month-old (this just happened; I am not happy about it).

Anyway. This is all to say that I am very much looking forward to becoming intimately acquainted with laundry detergent very, very soon.

If you’re similarly enamored of lovely-smelling laundry, good news: Method is launching a "Say No To Jugs" photo contest in which readers submit a photo documenting why laundry is such a chore (as an example, perhaps it’s a pain to lug around big, heavy jugs that spill everywhere). The entry with the most votes will win a year’s supply of detergent, and there are several runner-up prizes, as well.

Ooh - and every Thursday during the month of May you can download a coupon for $2 off of any laundry detergent from the “perks” tab.

(Why “Say No To Jugs”? Because Method’s detergent has a precision-dosing pump, and comes in streamlined bottles that are a) recyclable and b) take up far less space in your cupboard and on the planet than those oversized things you’re used to hauling around.)

Method is a sponsor of Ramshackle Glam.

Saturday Shopping Trip

I, like everyone else on the planet, love outlet mall shopping. I mean, obviously. But, because I live in Manhattan and do not own a car (yet! I’m gearing up for a guys-tell-me-what-kind-of-car-to-lease - cheap! and good mileage! and safe! - post), I never get to do it.

On Saturday, I got to do it, at the Tanger Outlets in Deer Park, where I went in search of fun spring-y stuff for upcoming segments. (I look so serious in that shot! So Matrix-y. It’s the sunglasses.)

Want to see some of my favorite finds?

First, this Patterson J. Kincaid dress that I really wish I had bought, after looking at this photo. Ah, well. Maybe they…deliver?

Tell me these DVF clutches aren’t incredible

Hanky Panky! Always good.

Obviously an essential purchase. (If any of you know some great baby apps, by the way, would love to hear about them. The only ones I’ve downloaded are extremely weird and make terrifying noises, and are all sorts of not-entertaining.)

And why has no one ever told me about Christmas Tree Shops before? Has everyone secretly been sneaking off to this place except for me? Is it somewhere that everyone else in the world has heard of, and I’m about to get made fun of for being all shocked and awed that it doesn’t sell exclusively ornaments and such? I have a feeling that the answer to the latter to that is a big old Yes.

Anyway, it’s more or less The Store Made Exclusively For Jordan’s Enjoyment, so I spent awhile there. I got too overwhelmed by the options, though, and ended up only purchasing a bunch of baby wipes (really), so…I need to go back. For furniture. Because I spotted a wrought-iron patio set for fifty bucks, and almost bought it despite the fact that the only place in the apartment with space to put it would be actually inside the baby’s crib, along with the baby.

Here’s my feet and my spoils. (The baby wipes are on the left.)

Tanger Outlets is a sponsor of Ramshackle Glam.

Spring Baby Clothing…Plus Chaps KIDS Giveaway

Facts:

1. Shopping for baby clothing is fun.

2. Shopping for a new Spring wardrobe is fun.

Put those together, and it’s just too much. Brightly-colored plaid shirts?! Yes, obviously. Tiny little chinos with grosgrain belts? If you insist. And THIS:

Heart patters. (I just bought it.)

Want to win some warm(er)-weather duds for your own little one? Chaps KIDS, makers of the adorableness pictured above, is giving away a set (for either a boy or a girl) to one RG reader. To enter, just head over to my Facebook page and “Like” the Chaps Giveaway post. That’s it!

Chaps is a sponsor of Ramshackle Glam.

Chaps KIDS Giveaway…Coming Up Tomorrow

Just a heads-up that I’ll be posting a giveaway tomorrow AM from Chaps KIDS to get those of you with wee ones started on your Spring shopping.

Super-cute stuff for boys (CHINOS)…

or girls (RUFFLES).

The post will also include a video chronicling our Troubles With Tar and some Fourth-Wall Problems. Stay tuned to find out what in the world I’m talking about.

Method Clean Happy Campaign Launch + Giveaway

I remember the first time I ever saw Method products in a drugstore very clearly, because I had a very particular thought about them, and that thought was: “Huh. Those are too pretty to be in a drugstore. They must be expensive.”

But of course, they’re weren’t, and home with me they came. And ever since, I’ve been a devotee to the clean scents, stylin’ packaging, and affordable prices. Especially the hand soap - I love that stuff (almost out of my Sweet Water). And now that I’m moving into a place that will require things like…wait for it…LAUNDRY DETERGENT (New Yorkers, you get my excitement over this one), I’m expanding my Method repertoire.

Over the next few months I’m going to be spotlighting some of my favorite products here, but for now, let’s talk giveaway, because this is a good one. Head over to Method’s Facebook Page, and you can enter to win very cool prizes: a trip for two to the Method HQ in San Francisco (which I hear is awesome), a year’s supply of product (!), and other surprises. Good luck!

Method is a sponsor of Ramshackle Glam. 

Tanger Outlets Sweepstakes / $2,000 Shopping Spree

First of all, can we have a conversation about those shoes?

They’re so good. The whole strappy-platform thing has been around forever and ever by now, but I like that neat twist with the heel shape - it’s a great little update. And the colors! So ’70s. So cute.

But that’s completely besides the point. The point is that over the next couple of months I’m going to be styling a couple of fun, spring-y (and affordable) looks using pieces I find at Tanger Outlets, but before I get to that we wanted to give you guys a chance to get moving on your own warm-weather wardrobe…with a $2,000 shopping spree. Woo!

All you have to do: visit Tanger’s Facebook page and upload a full-length photo of your most stylish spring look. Starting March 29, fans will help select the winning look from the top 24 submissions, and the entry with the most votes will win a $2,000 Grand Prize (First Runner-Up up will win $1,000, and three Second Runners-Up will each win a $500 gift card).

Fun stuff. Go to it!

Tanger Outlets is a sponsor of Ramshackle Glam.

Spring Preview: Pop Of Color

It’s true: the whole “pop of color” thing can be a little intimidating, if only because colors like neon yellow and bright orange don’t exactly say “wallflower.” But if you’re OK with letting your wardrobe be a little look-at-me from time to time, splashes of saturated citrus are a great way to start getting excited about the coming of Spring…and if you pair them with easy neutrals like grey, black, white, and navy, they’re also completely wearable.

For this post, I styled three pop-of-color pieces from The Limited in three different ways, all using neutrals as a base. Let me know which one (if any) you like best, and click over to The Limited’s Facebook Page to check out how to style some of the season’s other big trends, and to enter to win a Pop Of Color look.

Look 1: Angle Pocket Pleated Skirt c/o The Limited (love the length and the to-the-waist cut), vintage belt, Betsey Johnson heels, American Vintage tank, GANT sunglasses, Katherine Kwei purse, Blush lingerie.

Look 2: Contrast Hem Colorblock Top c/o The Limited, vintage jewelry, Betsey Johnson heels, Forever 21 pants.

Look 3: Nylon Tote c/o The Limited (incidentally, I’ve discovered that this also makes quite the diaper bag), dress c/o dee&ray, GANT sunglasses, Betsey Johnson heels (yep, same pair in all three shots - I love the khaki color with these brights).

The Limited is a sponsor of Ramshackle Glam. 

ShoeMint Giveaway!

First, I obviously like everything about this photo, from the outfit (ooh) to that couch (OOH)…but mostly, I like the shoes, because, you know…leopard. I’m actually wait-listed for a pair right now (it appears that style in that print was just a wee bit popular).

ShoeMint, if you haven’t heard about it yet, is a members-only shoe subscription service (the shoe equivalent of StyleMint, which you’ve read about here before), and a collaboration with the eminently fashionable actress Rachel Bilson, celebrity stylist Nicole Chavez, and shoe legend Steve Madden.

In a nutshell, here’s how it works: you sign up, fill out your Style Quiz so that the site can get to know your unique look, and then each month a new collection of shoes is released and you receive new styles in your online showroom (along with trend reports and style tips). If you like what you see, you pick out a gorgeous pair of shoes that you would ordinarily pay hundreds for for just $78.98. If you don’t see a pair you want, no problem: just skip it, and there’s no charge for that month.

Three more pluses: ShoeMint offers hard-to-find sizes from 5-11, shipping is free, and all RG readers can use code SHACK for 10% off of their first pair of shoes through 2/29/12 (first-time buyers only).

ShoeMint is offering one Ramshackle Glam reader a credit to purchase any pair of shoes they like on the site. To enter, just visit my Facebook page and Like the ShoeMint giveaway post. That’s it. Good luck!

BeautyMint is a sponsor of Ramshackle Glam. Promo code valid through 02/29/12 for new members only. Winner of giveaway will be chosen via Random.org; winner’s name will be posted in an update to this post on Friday, 02/10/12.

12 Days Of Giving Blogger Picks

So you know I chose the plaid shirt…but you want to see what the other 11 bloggers think make perfect gifts for everyone on your list? Click here.

P.S. See that reindeer sweater on the right in the above photo (hiding behind my plaid shirts)? Bought it for Kendrick last year. There’s nothing like a slightly dorky reindeer sweater at Christmastime.

American Living Made For 12 Days Of Giving Gift Pick

Presenting: my choice for the American Living’s Made For 12 Days Of Giving program.

A plaid shirt!

Surprised?

This is what I’d pick up for a husband/boyfriend…and then immediately steal on a cold winter morning to wear while curled up in front of my imaginary fireplace while reading US Weekly (ssh) and drinking hot chocolate. (I would rationalize this theft by explaining to said S.O. that plaid shirts tend to get softer and more wonderful the more they’re worn. In other words: I’d be doing him a favor by living in it.)

My favorite color combo is the Green/Red pattern you can see here…and it’s presently on sale for $24.99 (down from $60), so: excellent last-minute shopping solution.