Books you need to add to your ‘To Read’ list

Success on ti, a Cincinnati fashion blog; best books to read Summer 2017

I have a vivid memory my mother forcing me to sit in a big armchair in our living room each summer and not being allowed to get up until I read a certain number of pages or chapters. I was SO unhappy with that mandate, since I wanted to be outside or at the pool with my friends.

Fortunately, my disdain for being forced to read didn’t last, hell, maybe my mom’s tactic even worked, because as a middle school student, I decided I absolutely loved to read.

My dad would take me to our local book store and I would spend an hour wandering the aisles and picking up book after book. Eventually, I would come out with a huge stack of books, unable to wait until I got home to start reading.

I’m lucky this has carried into my adult life, and reading is one of my favorite activities. OK SO, I have a huge stack of books that I’ve recently read or are on my stack to read next and I wanted to share them:

  1. Anything by Liane Moriarty. I first heard about Liane when I heard her book Big Little Lies was being developed into a series starring my ultimate girl-crush, Reese Witherspoon. I love reading books before they become shows or movies and BLL didn’t disappoint. Next, I devoured Truly Madly Guilty, What Alice Forgot, The Husband’s Secret (all which are supposedly being optioned into movies) and The Hypnotist’s Love Story. Now I’m about 20 pages into Three Wishes and will start The Last Anniversary next.

2.  The Couple Next Door – Anne and Marco Conti seem to have it all—a loving relationship, a wonderful home, and their beautiful baby, Cora. But one night when they are at a dinner party next door, a terrible crime is committed. Suspicion immediately focuses on the parents. But the truth is a much more complicated story.

3. Luckiest Girl Alive – As a teenager at the prestigious Bradley School, Ani FaNelli endured a shocking, public humiliation that left her desperate to reinvent herself. Now, with a glamorous job, expensive wardrobe, and handsome blue blood fiancé, she’s this close to living the perfect life she’s worked so hard to achieve. But Ani has a secret. (This one is also supposedly being made into a movie, produced by my girl Reese Witherspoon’s production company, Pacific Standard.

4. The Nest – The four Plumb siblings are waiting for their inheritance (affectionately called the nest) to be dispersed once the youngest sister turns 40. The nest has been growing exponentially since their father’s untimely death when they were all adolescents, and each one of the Plumbs has been making poor financial decisions in the hopes of being bailed out by the nest. Instead, the oldest brother is allowed to withdraw the majority of the money early to be used as a payoff for an unfortunate accident he causes.

5. The Mountain Between Us – On a stormy winter night, two strangers wait for a flight at the Salt Lake City airport.  Ashley Knox is an attractive, successful writer, who is flying East for her much anticipated wedding.  Dr. Ben Payne has just wrapped up a medical conference and is also eager to get back East for a slate of surgeries he has scheduled for the following day.   When the last outgoing flight is cancelled due to a broken de-icer and a forthcoming storm, Ben finds a charter plane that can take him around the storm and drop him in Denver to catch a connection.   And when the pilot says the single engine prop plane can fit one more, if barely, Ben offers the seat to Ashley knowing that she needs to get back just as urgently.   And then the unthinkable happens.  The pilot has a heart attack mid-flight and the plane crashes into the High Uintas Wilderness– one of the largest stretches of harsh and remote land in the United States. (NOTE: This book has been made into a movie starring none other than Kate Winslet and Idris Elba, CANNOT wait!)

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati style blog; what to read next; book recommendations

6. Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine – Meet Eleanor Oliphant: She struggles with appropriate social skills and tends to say exactly what she’s thinking. Nothing is missing in her carefully timetabled life of avoiding social interactions, where weekends are punctuated by frozen pizza, vodka, and phone chats with Mummy. But everything changes when Eleanor meets Raymond, the bumbling and deeply unhygienic IT guy from her office. When she and Raymond together save Sammy, an elderly gentleman who has fallen on the sidewalk, the three become the kinds of friends who rescue one another from the lives of isolation they have each been living. And it is Raymond’s big heart that will ultimately help Eleanor find the way to repair her own profoundly damaged one.

7. One of Us Is Lying – This book is described as ‘A dark version of The Breakfast Club’ and I CANNOT wait to devour it.

8. The Hand That Feeds You – Thirty-year-old Morgan Prager is working toward a degree in victim psychology, engaged to Bennett, a seductive but mysterious man she met online, and living with her three dogs, including two rescued pit bulls, in Brooklyn. One day Morgan returns home from class to find her dogs covered in what looks like blood. She follows them into the bedroom where she stumbles upon Bennett’s corpse torn limb from limb, presumably by the dogs themselves. Grief-stricken and traumatized, Morgan sets out to inform her fiancé’s family of his horrific death.

I hope this list peaks your interest and you add a few books to your list!

Happy reading!

 

 

 

Friday faves: July 7, 2017

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati style blog; Brunch at Incline Public House

As always, Happy Friday. Something about holiday weeks always seem to drag on, don’t you think?

Last weekend and this week were spent exploring Cincy and hanging out with friends. Anyway, let’s get to it:

Around the Interwebs: 

In the blogosphere: 

Shopping: 

Watching: 

 

Friday Faves: June 29, 2017

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; 4th of July outfit inspiration, gingham shorts

Happy Friday! Sorry for the lack of Friday Faves around here the last few weeks, but I’m SUPER excited to be back this week to share what I’m loving/reading/shopping…

On SoS: 

Around the blogosphere:

On the interwebs:

Watching:

Style accordingly, 

 

27.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati style blog wearing a bell-sleeved blouse, white jeans and Steve Madden wedges

Today, I turn 27. Not a major milestone, and as we get older, birthdays tend to ‘mean less‘ to some. For me, birthdays have been and always will be special. (#notsorry). For me, this day has turned into a day of reflection over the last year. The good, the bad, the average.

Last year, I posted 6 things I learned before 26, and its been one of my most popular posts to date.

This year, I thought I’d share some thoughts on this blog and what it means to me in my life, why I do it, and why I sometimes struggle with it.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati style blog wearing a bell-sleeved blouse, white jeans and Steve Madden wedges

If you know me on a personal level at all, you know putting together outfits gives me immense joy. It’s been something I’ve loved for years, and one of the barriers to starting this blog was a fear of putting myself out there and whether or not this passion is as worthy of other passions. I used to question this all the time, but I’ve learned to tune out the snide and sarcastic comments and remember that I may not understand others the way I understand myself, and that’s ok. To each their own, everyones lives unfold differently.

Not only have I learned to tune out those who may not understand why I do what I do, but I’ve also learned to stop comparing myself to other bloggers. Whenever I start to think, ‘Why did xx blogger get this partnership’ or ‘…invited to this event and not me.’  I focus on why I started this blog. Success on Stilettos was started as a passion project, a side hustle. Yes, it’s brought me some great opportunities and, yes, a little supplemental income, but there are a LOT of people out there that are more successful than me. I have to remember that comparison if the thief of joy. (Taking our own advice is hard sometimes!)

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati style blog wearing a bell-sleeved blouse, white jeans and Steve Madden wedges

Anytime I’m asked why I started this blog I always respond with this:

I was taught growing up that how you present yourself (what you’re wearing, etc) is your first impression. Despite what you may tell yourself, first impressions are important. As twentysomething in the working world, I am constantly making first impressions. I want to show women that we can look and feel just a good as women in magazines without breaking the bank. This is my passion, and this blog is my creative outlet. 

Though I love my ‘day job’, this blog has definitely kept me sane over the years, and I hope to continue to be able to create content for you in a meaningful way.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati style blog wearing a bell-sleeved blouse, white jeans and Steve Madden wedges

Shop the look: 

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati style blog wearing a bell-sleeved blouse, white jeans and Steve Madden wedges

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati style blog wearing a bell-sleeved blouse, white jeans and Steve Madden wedges

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati style blog wearing a bell-sleeved blouse, white jeans and Steve Madden wedges

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati style blog wearing a bell-sleeved blouse, white jeans and Steve Madden wedges

Style accordingly,

 

Independence Day Inspo

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog wearing a striped swing dress denim jacket and chuck taylors; 4th Of July outfit

Every year, I talk about my love for the 4th of July. Not sure why it’s become one of my most favorite holidays, but I think it has something to do with the fact that it seems to encapsulate everything I love about my favorite season: cookouts, day drinking, pool days and being with friends. Plus, it’s the perfect excuse to wear a red lip.

I actually shot this dress probably a month ago, totally not initially intended for the 4th of July, and while I was (finally) working on new content yesterday afternoon for you guys, I realized it was perfect for the Patriotic holiday. I’d add a red lip to up the red a bit, but otherwise it’s perfect.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog wearing a striped swing dress denim jacket and chuck taylors; 4th Of July outfit

Shop the look: 

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog wearing a striped swing dress denim jacket and chuck taylors; 4th Of July outfit

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog wearing a striped swing dress denim jacket and chuck taylors; 4th Of July outfit

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog wearing a striped swing dress denim jacket and chuck taylors; 4th Of July outfit

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog wearing a striped swing dress denim jacket and chuck taylors; 4th Of July outfit

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog wearing a striped swing dress denim jacket and chuck taylors; 4th Of July outfit

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog wearing a striped swing dress denim jacket and chuck taylors; 4th Of July outfit

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog wearing a striped swing dress denim jacket and chuck taylors; 4th Of July outfit

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog wearing a striped swing dress denim jacket and chuck taylors; 4th Of July outfit

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog wearing a striped swing dress denim jacket and chuck taylors; 4th Of July outfit

Dress accordingly, 

 

Beauty Faves: June Sephora Play Box

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; June Sephora Play! box

Hard to believe we’re already in June, yet here we are. The year is nearly half over – what!? I’m excited to share another month of Sephora Play! products (I shared March here, and totally dropped the ball in May).

June’s theme is a ‘Summer State of Mind‘ and I’m once again loving the products they sent over. I’m a big fan of the fact that it’s generally a few products I’ve tried before and a few I haven’t.

As always, I highly recommend subscribing to Play! as it’s only $10/mo and you get deluxe samples!

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; June Sephora Play! box

  • Verb Sea Spray – I became a fan of Verb when their hair oil was included in another month’s box. (I use it between washed to tame my ends – it’s light enough for fine hair!). So when I saw another of their products to try, I was stoked. This stuff does give a beachy texture, but in my opinion, no sea salt spray really works WONDERS. I do like that it makes my hair easier to curl with a wand and give more textured waves, though.
  • Coola Makeup Setting Spray – What I love about this is that it has SPF 30 in it. The smell is pretty strong, so brace yourself. I am a longtime user of Urban Decay’s Makeup Setting Spray and this product isn’t changing my mind, but I can see myself using it on minimal makeup days when I’ll be outside.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; June Sephora Play! box

  • Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in ‘Lovesick’ – Funny story about this one is that I’m a BIG FAN of this particular lippie and I recently lost it. I bought a replacement one day before this little guy showed up in my Play! box. (I’m glad I now have two because it’s so popular it’s sold out online!)
  • Versace Perfume ‘Bright Crystal’ –
  • I have become the queen of hoarding perfume samples and going through those rather than buying perfume. I definitely like how actually bright this perfume smells. It’ll be an easy go-to
  • Klorane Dry Shampoo – This is my go-to dry shampoo for my fine, oily hair. The version with nettle oil (green top) is GREAT for keeping my hair from getting gross in between washes (I usually go every other day. Since my hair is so fine, I can’t go much longer than that.)
  • Benefit POREfection Primer
  • This product is obviously popular (or they’re just really good at marketing) because it’s everywhere all the time. I think I have about 5 samples of this stuff in my beauty drawer. I’ve tried it several times and haven’t ever been super impressed. It’s supposed to minimize pores, but I don’t really see that effect.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; June Sephora Play! box

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; June Sephora Play! box

Shop the post: 

Have you tried any of these products? If so, what were your thoughts?
Style accordingly, 

Summer Brights [How to wear cropped, flared denim]

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; cropped flared jeans and a scalloped tank

One of my favorite trends this Summer is the cropped, flared jean. When they first became popular, I was NOT into them and now I’ve just purchased my second pair. I originally styled these jeans with a classic off-shoulder blue and white blouse and my favorite royal blue pumps. I scooped up this scalloped camisole at J.Crew factory, and I’m absolutely obsessed. The scallops are so fun and the bright color is summer perfection – plus it goes great with a classic denim jacket.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; cropped flared jeans and a scalloped tank

Shop the look: 

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; cropped flared jeans and a scalloped tank

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; cropped flared jeans and a scalloped tank

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; cropped flared jeans and a scalloped tank

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; cropped flared jeans and a scalloped tank

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; cropped flared jeans and a scalloped tank

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; cropped flared jeans and a scalloped tank

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; cropped flared jeans and a scalloped tank

Style accordingly, 

Friday Faves: June 9, 2017

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog;

You GUYS! We made it through yet another week. It’s been chilly here in Cincy, but it’s warming up this weekend and I’m super excited for my weekend plans:

Cincy-ing:

  • Namas-DEY – Fellow Threadie Elise and I are heading to the Bengals stadium for a little Saturday morning yoga. While I’ll always be #SteelerzfoLyfe, I’m excited to get outside and be active in a unique setting.
  • 50 West Canoe and Kayak / Sand Volleyball – Seriously, if you live in the Nati and haven’t done this, you’re totally missing out. Seeing a trend here? Lots of outdoor activities, but I’m really trying to get out and be active this Summer. I play sand volleyball weekly, but I’ve been itching to play more frequently and I’m super lucky to have a group of friends who loves it as much as I do.

On SoS:

Around the Interwebs:

What are you doing this weekend? Share!

 

Spring Fling with Monkee’s of Madiera: Look #2

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; Monkee's of Madiera a Cincinnati boutique

Last week, I shared the perfect dress to scoop up for all those Summer weddings and this week I’m back again with Monkee’s of Madiera again with the a pop of color that’ll be perfect to wear everyday this Summer.

I actually ended up taking home these white skinnies – they’re uber comfortable and the raw hem on the bottom is on-trend. Complete the look with your favorite Ray-Bans and these strappy gold wedges and BAM – an easy warm-weather look.

Don’t forget, the ladies of Thread and I are hosting a sip & shop on June 23rd! Come have a drink with us and pick up some of these seriously good Summer pieces!

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; Monkee's of Madiera a Cincinnati boutique

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; Monkee's of Madiera a Cincinnati boutique

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; Monkee's of Madiera a Cincinnati boutique

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; Monkee's of Madiera a Cincinnati boutique

Style accordingly, 

Casual Tuesday: Knotted Tee + Boyfriend Jeans with SheIn

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and lifestyle blog; casual Summer outfit with SheIn

There’s nothing I love more in the Summertimes especially than a solid casual outfit. This knotted tee from SheIn totally fits that bill. Since receiving this comfy tee, I’ve worn it with my favorite boyfriend jeans for a day of running errands, thrown it on over leggings and a sports bra post-workout and worn it with dark-wash denim as well. There are so many options!

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and lifestyle blog; casual Summer outfit with SheIn

Shop the look: Knotted tee

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and lifestyle blog; casual Summer outfit with SheIn

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and lifestyle blog; casual Summer outfit with SheIn

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and lifestyle blog; casual Summer outfit with SheIn

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and lifestyle blog; casual Summer outfit with SheIn

Style accordingly,