Friday, March 25, 2011

color blocking for vegas

nick and i have a trip to vegas planned in a couple weeks. i'm really looking forward to ditching reality for a few days to gamble, lay by the pool, eat some great food and check out all of the new casinos (i haven't been since right after the wynn opened) - OH, and to go to the biggest H&M in the united states! anyway, i'm anticipating saturday night to be an opportunity for nick and i to whoop it up at some of the new bars/clubs so i decided i'm going to break out of character and wear something super tight and a little over the top. being that i'll most likely never wear it again, i went to my local forever 21 (where i am obviously a regular, just like emily from the bachelor) and spent a whopping $25 on this colorblock bandage dress.

i got home and immediately went for a 7-mile run, my first run in about 8 months. i also did not forget to pick up my very first pair of spanx. i heart them already.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

prison stripes

you all most likely know about my obsession with black and white, especially in the bathroom or when reminiscent of prison stripes. well, thanks to fellow blogger the possessionista (she has the best as-seen-on-tv fashion finds, particularly when it comes to emily from the bachelor) i was able to get my hands on a new top that feeds my obsession. truth be told, i saw this $58 pins and needles top on a girl in a wine bar over the winter and didn't have the b@lls to ask her where she got it, so thanks, possessionista, for helping me find it. it's en route from the urban outfitters warehouse as we speak!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

the flock of seagulls is grounded

sad news, ladies. sad, sad news. remember my flock of seagulls dress i wrote about last week? remember that i spent almost $100 on the dress? weeellll, since i wanted to get as many wears out of it as possible, i wore it all day saturday for some errands around town. i paired it with a cute little crossbody bag that has a handy zippered pocket on the backside that is perfect for my iphone.

and apparently also perfect for ripping my flock of seagulls dress to shreds. i didn't notice until i got home in the evening that the zipper had literally shredded all of the seagulls on my right hip/butt area, about the size of an 8.5x11 piece of paper. i was <---> this close to throwing it out but decided i will still wear the dress when i can cover it up with a sweater and/or if i'm sitting down all day. just to prove to myself that it's ok, i wore it out for dinner that night with my friend mckinnon - with a strategically placed bag.

but since i was feeling so bad for myself i allowed myself a little replacement. only about a quarter the price of the flock of seagulls dress, this one shoulder number from forevs should do just fine. i wish i like it as much, though...

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

wrapped up in hearts

i can't get enough of rompers. every time i see one i rush over to it, hug it like it's my long lost sibling and barely glance at the price tag before throwing my debit card over the counter. such was the case when i saw this navy and white one at express ($69.90)...i typically don't go into express unless i need a cami or some ubiquitous work pants situation, but the tiny hearts on this guy caught my eye through the window. it's silk and it's lined, which makes the $70 price tag easier to swaller. i'd say it's the perfect situation for a summer show or two at stubbs with my new stuart-weitzman-look-for-less aldo wedges (blogged about here). and in case you're wondering, it's officially in the 80s daily here in austin. hearts!!!

Monday, March 21, 2011

guest blogger: korie's sex and the city knockoff

everyone, please welcome korie back to the blog! (if you missed her first post last week, check it out here) i hope she becomes a regular contributor because i love the flair she brings to paid up top. yay korie! -- annie

I’d been looking for something fun and fancy for a wedding we have in Buffalo, NY in late April for a while now. Being a mom of 2, I don’t get out much so when I get the chance, I really like to dress up…and go big or go home. During naptime I had been looking online for a fun gown to wear to this party. Probably totally overdressed, but that’s ok. I found a couple on when they had their 15% off evening gown sale. But, when I got them and tried them on, they were not nearly as cute on me as they looked on the models online. Shocker, I know. So I returned them and being that one was Nicole Miller and one Badgley Mischka, it was probably for the best in terms of my bank account. 15% helped, but still not necessarily cheap dresses. So I kept looking…

Remember the Sex in the City episode where Carrie was modeling and she first tried on a black floral long gown….i think by Dolce and Gabbana? But then she ended up wearing the sparkly underwear type deal and falling on the runway. The long floral gown was worn by Heidi Klum and this dress I found totally reminds me of it.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

for japan with love

i've been watching more cnn than ever since the devastating earthquakes and tsunami in japan and have felt so helpless. an old friend of mine lives in tokyo with his family and i can't imagine what it's been like to live through such an experience. he has kept in touch with his friends and family using facebook throughout the week and up until yesterday was still reporting about aftershocks, an empty pantry and no one on the streets. i pray for those who have lost loved ones, lost their homes, and continue to face the impact of the devastation every day.

tomorrow my blog will be quiet because i'll be participating in a bloggers day of silence for the people of japan. for japan with love was organized by fellow bloggers lydia of ever ours and lucia and henny of utterly engaged and all donations will go to disaster relief efforts for the people of japan. from lydia of ever ours:

"we have handpicked ShelterBox as the organization we'd like to donate to. we know that their volunteers are already there in Japan helping, so please be assured that your donations are being put to good use. ShelterBox provides emergency shelter and lifesaving supplies for families around the world who are affected by disasters at the time when they need it the most. Each large, green ShelterBox is tailored to a disaster but typically contains a disaster relief tent for an extended family, blankets, water storage and purification equipment, cooking utensils, a stove, a basic tool kit, a children’s activity pack and other vital items."

if you'd like to donate directly to shelterbox, please click here. thank you for your support, and until monday...i'll be praying for you, japan.

necklace in action: sailor knots

i started out the week with some bad iphone photos so i figured i'd continue the trend...with more bad iphone photos. i just don't leave enough time in the morning to set up the tripod before bolting out the door to get to work on time. man, do i look tired. aaaaanyway...

my new banana republic sailor knot necklace arrived the other day and i luuuuuurv it. i bought mine with a discount code and a merchandise credit, bringing my grand total to $9, but i'm still annoyed that of course NOW it's on sale. oh well. i'm just glad i have it! get yours for $48.50 today. i think i'm gonna wear it again tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

piperlime's girl on a budget

i don't know about you but i love me a website that understands me. and piperlime does. they recently launched a girl on a budget section of their site and its one of the first things i click on when visiting. they break out it out by must-haves, shoes, clothes, jewelry and accessories - all under $100. ch-ch-check it out, you're sure to find something to love. these are just a few of the things i spied when checking out the latest options.

below: tinley road lesley shoes, $59

below: aryn k stripe blazer, $94

below: collective concepts ruffle tank dress, $49

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

outfit in action: flock of seagulls

i was so late for work today but i just had to take a pic of what i was wearing - even though i look slightly bloated and/or possessed in this bad photo. i finally decided to go for it and wear my new summer maxi dress, which a coworker lovingly dubbed my "flock of seagulls" dress. i got this bad boy from austin boutique fabrik and it's made my collective concepts. belt is new york & company and the cardi is H&M (btw, i get to go to the biggest H&M in the US in a few weeks when nick and i go to vegas for a weekend, woooot! i miss this store SO MUCH!).

Monday, March 14, 2011

guest blogger: korie's vintage finds for a good cause

introducing paid up top's first guest blogger, korie! i met korie while on my girls' trip to mexico and i loved getting to know her. korie is a native austinite turned minnesotan and a true fashionista who puts me to shame when it comes to looking super stylish without spending tons of loot. please welcome korie to paid up top and help her choose a mask for her masquerade ball! - annie


If some of you know me, you know that I moved up to Minnesota to work for my aunt who started a nonprofit organization called the Hope Chest for Breast Cancer ( The organization has 2 stores here in the Twin Cities that sell very upscale designer clothing, accessories and home goods that are donated new by retail stores or gently used by individuals. The money made from the stores and other fundraising efforts supports different breast cancer causes.

I don’t work there anymore, but I do still love to support this cause near and dear to my heart. So, when I heard that they had been collecting designer vintage stuff for over the past year to sell at this one day only event, I marked it on my calendar! I took my daughter, Ryan, and we made the 40 minute drive out to the Hope Chest store in Wayzata, MN. We were told by the store manager to get there early because they had received lots of press about the event and the place was sure to be packed. And it was! We were among about 10 others waiting in line to get in right at 10 a.m! And boy was it worth it!

Here are some of my finds from that morning. I wish I had taken pics while I was there so yall could get a glimpse of how awesome this store is…and well…how cute my daughter was dressed up in vintage gold beads and greeting shoppers at the door.

Below: Yellow Mohair Jacket. I wore this to church last weekend and got a ton of compliments on the color.

Below: Long Garden Party Dress (this one looks Lily Pulitzer-esque to me). Thinking I’ll wear this to Easter brunch since it will still be cold here (ugggh!) and this dress has long sleeves. Maybe a gold statement necklace or earrings to bring it a little more modern.

Lace Cocktail Dress. This was done by a custom designer from Vancouver. Not sure when. But its totally on trend with the lace and the jewel tone deep blue. I plan on wearing this one to the Friends of St. Judes Masquerade Ball in May. I purchased 2 different masks from to match! Which one do yall think I should wear?

Below: Turquoise/Black Cocktail Dress. Probably wear this to a rehearsal dinner I have in late April in Buffalo, NY. But it’s so classy and simple that I think I will wear it to a lot of places. I love the black on the back of the sash and the cap sleeves. And the bright blue is on trend for spring. I am thinking black pumps with this one.

Below: Navy Cotton Dress w/Gold Collar. Loving the pockets. So comfy, simple and something I could wear to a lot of different types of things.

All of these were at a fraction of what they would cost normally and all for a good cause….basically GUILT FREE! Plus I decided to give up shopping for myself and my children for lent. Only necessities….so this was a good place for one “last hurrah”.

Please remember that anyone can donate things to the Hope Chest…from anywhere. You’ll get an itemized receipt in January for your taxes and the shipping of the goods to Minnesota is also tax deductible!

Great finds - Great Prices - Great Cause