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Fashion Inspiration: Pastel Shades

Pastel Dresses

Image via Lane Dittoe

It may not be bright, warm and sunny quite yet, but the spring lines are already starting to hit the stores, and I am starting to get kinda antsy for the next season. One of the biggest trends for Spring 2012 is pastel colors. They are every where – clothing, accessories, makeup – pastel prettiness is taking over. Being the girly-girl that I am, I could not be more delighted with this trend. Bring on the soft, romantic, airy colors!

Pastel Fashion Trend Spring 2012 Runway

Louis Vuitton, Emporio Armani, Prada, Versus, Versus   

I think the new palette for spring is refreshing. I love the Easter greens, warm yellows, flirty peaches and powdery pinks and lavenders. If you are feeling bold, you can wear several pastel shades in a color block pattern – or choose one shade and go head to toe. For something a littles less, shall we say, dramatic – just pick one piece and keep the fresh spring-y look by pairing it with crisp whites or warm light grays. For a night-time look, just add sequins! As is my usual practice, anyway.

Pastels are flirty, versatile and feminine – what could be better?!

Pastel Colors Fashion Spring Trends 2012, Street Style

Atlantic Pacific, Elements of Style, Source Unknown, Source Unknown, The Glitter Guide

If you do decide to color block your pastels – be careful – choose more than two shades and you may end up looking like a preppy Easter egg. Also, if pastels just aren’t the right shade for your skin or hair tones, try smaller doses of it – there are pastels popping up in jewelry, shoes and even nail polish. And don’t forget – pastels aren’t just for daytime tea parties – just pick a piece with shine or sequins.

Pastel Fashion Spring 2012 Trends

 Top: Chalayan, Eyeshadow – Christian Dior, Bracelet – Asos, Shoe – Casadei, Belt: Asos, Purse: YSL, Blazer: Unknown, Makeup Palette: Bobbi Brown, Pants: Gucci, Sweater: Acne, Scarf: Missoni, Ring: Monki, Pants: J Brand, Sweater: Joseph, Clutch: Anya Hindmarch

Will you be rocking pretty pastels this spring? Which shade will you pick?


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Posted: 31st January 2012 | by: ashley | in: Fashion Inspiration | 5 Comments

Weekend in Review: Shop ‘Til You Drop


Happy Monday, lovelies! I hope you all had a wonderful and relaxing weekend. I’m trying out some new things on the blog right now (you know, just keeping things interesting) – like you saw on Friday with the Lovely Links post. I am doing this simply because I want to give you the chance to know the girl behing the blog a little bit better and occasionally get a peek into my every day life. It’s not interesting and blog worthy all the time,  but I have my moments.

So, on that note, welcome to the latest feature, Weekend in Review – Instagram-ed snapshots of what I did this past weekend (mainly because I am an Instagram addict).

This past weekend consisted of a lot of shopping for me – shocking, I know. I recently decided I couldn’t live with my bedroom the way it was anymore and that it was time for a makeover. More glamorous and chic, less hodge-podge. More pulled together, and clearly, more stylish. I tend to put my dollars into my closet, which means my home decor and furnishings often get neglected, but no more!

First item of business – new bedding. I found my new duvet at Z Gallerie, and let me tell you, I am a smitten kitten. It’s even pug-approved. I love the lilac shade and modern-chic print – plus the duvet is reversible – so its like having two new duvets! I chose graphite gray sheets and a matching bedskirt, one of my favorite accent colors for purple. Besides, white was just too boring!

Mimosa Duvet, Z Galerie

I also hit up pretty much every furniture and home decor store within a twenty mile radius, on Saturday. Scouting for lamps, bookcases, nightstands, a mirror and any other little whim that popped into my pretty little head. It helped me get a few ideas of what I wanted to do with my room and I found new curtains and pillows in the process. I also stumbled onto a mountain of adorable and delicious Valentine’s Day treats at World Market. Naturally, I had to stock up.

There was also a drizzly walk at the dog park for Pug Face, and a night with friends at a local country dive bar, The Little Red Hen, for plenty of beer and dancing. Preceded by a boisterous round of my new favorite board game – The Game of Things. It had us laughing so much, we barely made it to the bar for a few rounds of dosey-doe.

Valentine's Day Candy and Treats, from World Market

Sunday was spent combing an antique mall for the elusive “perfect mirror” I have envisioned in my head (I told you there was a lot of shopping), a cozy dinner with family, the latest episode of Downton Abbey (I AM OBSESSED – if you’re not already watching this show, I insist you start ASAP) and starting to hang my new gallery wall. I’m already thrilled with the new look of my bedroom and I’ve only just begun…

What did you do this weekend?


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Posted: 30th January 2012 | by: ashley | in: My Life, Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Happy Weekend: Lovely Links

 Happy Friday – the weekend has finally arrived! I plan on making the most of my two days off this weekend – I’m going to try out my brand new slow cooker, hit up some vintage and antique shops for pieces to complete my new bedroom makeover, go to a country dive bar with friends for lots of dancing and silly fun, and take a couple barre classes to keep up my workout routine.

For your weekend enjoyment…a new feature! Every Friday I will be giving you guys a few “Lovely Links” – fun, inspiring and cool things I have found during my week of blog reading and trolling. Enjoy!

*Gorgeous images straight from the runway of Elie Saab’s latest couture collection – pastels for days!

*A charming inspiration board based on Downton Abbey – my latest obsession. If you haven’t started watching this show, you’re missing out. It only took me 15 minutes to get hooked!

*Images of Rachel Zoe’s fashion-filled office space – I. Die. To be surrounded by such amazing shoes, accessories and clothing…BA-NANAS.

*Clemence Poesy’s editorial spread for Elle UK‘s February issue – simply divine!

*Pep Ventosa’s incredible reconstructed photographic images – pieced together like a puzzle – from all around the world. Amaze.

What are your plans for the weekend?


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Posted: 27th January 2012 | by: ashley | in: Uncategorized | Leave a comment

DIY, Darling: A Place for Love Letters and Trinkets

Love Notes & Trinkets from Ashley Brooke Designs on Vimeo.

Believe it or not, I’ve been feeling in the DIY spirit lately – which is remarkable for someone like me, because if you knew me, you’d know most of my DIY projects end up looking like a kindergarten kid did them. But this year, I am bound and determined to improve my crafting skills. Perhaps this video from Ashley Brooke Designs and Matchbook Magazine will serve as inspiration for my first project – an adorable box to hold and display cards, letters and trinkets – so sweet.


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Posted: 26th January 2012 | by: ashley | in: My Life, Places & Spaces, Pretty Things, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Designer Spotlight: Karl Lagerfeld

Designer Karl Lagerfeld

KARL is here! The master of fashion, Karl Lagerfeld released his latest collection, KARL, today and it’s, well, all about Karl. The designer who has been behind brands like Fendi, Valentino, Chloe, and of course, Chanel, has created a collection of staples and basics with a stylish, modern and very Karl-like spin to them. The pieces in the line are a take on what the icon himself wears as his daily uniform – the entire line is done in shades of white, gray and black, and has a distinct edginess to it.

Karl says a white shirt, jeans and a jacket, are the three basics everyone needs in their closet. He’s taken these staples and added his cutting edge genius – not to mention leather, sequins, metallics, biker touches, and PVC sleeves on sweatshirts – for his namesake line. Chanel is my ultimate fashion love, and the man behind it all has done it again, in my humble opinion. I am ready to order some KARL for my closet – here are my picks…

Karl Lagerfeld Karl Collection

KARL by Karl Lagerfeld Collection, via Net-a-Porter

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Posted: 25th January 2012 | by: ashley | in: Designer Spotlight, Now Trending | Leave a comment

Three Cheers For: Stud Earrings

Panda Stud Earrings, Betsey Johnson

Betsey Johnson

Usually, I’m a statement earring kind of girl – the more sparkly, the better, I say! However, since I bought my Chanel interlocking “C” studs last fall, I’ve been getting into the stud earrings more – especially on a regular, at-home, low-key day. And I’ve also learned that post earrings don’t have to be simple or boring – they can have as much pizazz as the big hoops and dangly chandeliers.

Try a pair in a bright, bold color – especially neon shades, since they are in for spring! Or maybe shades of pastel – since they are in for spring, as well!

Colorful Stud Earrings

Aqua, Carole, Stephan and Co, Kendra Scott

Or maybe chose a sparkly pair – its a little bit more understated way to add a little sparkle to your everyday outfits. You know me, the sparkly ones are always my favorites! The pair on the top left – the White Glitter Studs from Coralia are my current obsession.

Sparkly Stud Earrings

Coralia, Alexandra Beth, Juicy Couture, Alexis Bittar, Kenneth Jay Lane

And let’s not forget – the classic silver and gold studs – these picks are anything but ordinary!

Silver and Gold Stud Earrings

Tory Burch, Marc by Marc Jacobs, Giles and Brother, Kate Spade, Finn, Kate Spade, Tiffany

 Do you rock stud earrings or big statement earrings more often?


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Posted: 24th January 2012 | by: ashley | in: Fashion Inspiration, Now Trending, Retail Therapy, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Designer Spotlight: Oscar de la Renta’s Spring 2012 Campaign with Karlie Kloss

Oscar de la Renta, Spring 2012 Campaign, Karlie Kloss

Have you guys seen the Spring 2012 Campaign from Oscar de la Renta that debuted this week? I am in love! Oscar de la Renta is always glamorous, always elegant, always dramatic – and this campaign is no different. Model Karlie Kloss looks incredible in this spread – both feminine and fierce. The vibrant clothes look great against the black and white graphic background too – it really makes them pop. The background is so modern and strong, and the clothes are so feminine – its a nice contrast. One of my favorite campaigns in a while!

Oscar de la Renta, Spring 2012 Campaign, Karlie Kloss

Do you love it, or do you love it?


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Posted: 22nd January 2012 | by: ashley | in: Designer Spotlight | 1 Comment

Pretty Things: Chloe Knit Cuff Clog

Chloe Knit Cuff Clog


It’s true lovelies, I am completely enamored with these Knit Cuff Clogs from Chloe. I know some people may find it absurd, but I think they are dreamy. I love the platform (I have a hard time passing up a good platform), the chunky heel is perfect for the winter months, and the cuff is such a fun touch. It would be perfect to wear with a little dress and tights – or skinny jeans! Best of all? They’re on sale. At Barney’s. And I am crossing my fingers there just might be a pair left in a size 7 1/2. There is just enough winter left to wear these babies!

What do you think? Should I make them mine?


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Posted: 19th January 2012 | by: ashley | in: Pretty Things, Retail Therapy | Leave a comment

Fashion Inspiration: Winter Whites

Winter White, Katie Ermilio

Via Katie Ermilio

With all the snow over in my little corner of the world this week, its gotten me thinking about winter whites. During the summer months, I love the look of a little white dress or white jeans, but I am also a firm believer in wearing white AFTER Labor Day. White isn’t just for spring and summer, lovelies – its a fabulously chic look for the winter months as well! Take a white summer dress and add black tights, black heels and a little blazer for a hip trendy look, or go for a monochromatic style – combining white and cream colors into one outfit for a classic and posh feel. One of the easiest ways to do winter white is with a cozy wool coat – classy, simple and elegant! Even white jeans can be worn during the winter months – pair them with a cream sweater, or camel accents, and boots.

Winter White Fashion and Style

The Embellishment, Vogue Closet, The Sartorialist, Source, Unknown, Gretchen Jones NYC, Habitually Chic

Most creams, whites, tans and neutral colors go together easily, so mix and match away – don’t think you need to wear all coordinating colors of white – you don’t want to look like you’re in a cult after all. However, an all-white tuxedo is acceptable. Most of all, just have fun with it – I promise you’ll feel lighter and brighter wearing winter whites in the middle of January!

Winter Whites,

Corduroy Pants – Theory, Sweater – Donna Karan, Scarf – Isabel Marant, Fur Bolero – Matthew Williamson, Pants Look – Antonio Berardi, Skirt Look – Lanvin

How are you going to wear your winter whites?


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Posted: 18th January 2012 | by: ashley | in: Fashion Inspiration | 2 Comments

Designer Spotlight: Have You Met Miss Jones

Have You Met Miss Jones

Have you met Miss Jones? Because I just did, and she’s amazing. Jennifer Jones is an artist and designer for her own interior designs line, Have You Met Miss Jones and has a background in fashion with major brands like Polo Ralph Lauren, Nike and Diesel, but started her own lifestyle company back in 2006. Her contemporary designs for the interior were originally all in white bone china, but she has since moved into clay pottery, capiz shells, metal and woodwork.

I am not usually a huge fan of more modern and contemporary designs, but I have fallen hard for this line. It’s just so quirky and unique. I love that she takes such every day, ordinary objects and turns them into something totally whimsical. Her vases are shaped like buildings and jars, sandcastles are more.

Have You Met Miss Jones

The vespa figurine and Chinese take-out box are two of my favorites – they would add such personality to a room! The hanging blown glass vases would be amazing decor for a party or a wedding, and the bone china keys? One would make a fantastic gift – or a whole bunch on a Christmas tree would be one of a kind – can you imagine?

Have You Met Miss Jones

Check out the rest of her amazing designs on her website!


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Posted: 12th January 2012 | by: ashley | in: Designer Spotlight, Places & Spaces | 1 Comment
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