Monday, July 12, 2010

My Love Affair With Brown

When I moved from Colorado to Florida in the middle of my 10th grade year, I clung to wearing the color brown to help me blend in. I wasn't comfortable in my own skin and certainly didn't want to be bold or call attention to myself. I have brown hair & brown eyes, so it made sense. Black would make me look despressed or too stark, so I chose brown. Even in my Senior year when I had more confidence and got bold enough to cut my hair short and call more attention, I balanced out my short, spiky, colored hair by wearing a fairly drab color palate based on dark brown & olive green.

As I've gotten older, I've gotten comfortable wearing brown and wear a lot of it. My friends know I obsessively like brown and often get me something brown as a gift or give me a hard time for always wearing the same color. So, as I got ready to have my colors done with style guru Karen C. Hughes of Image Assets, I was kinda nervous. Though I love brown and know it looks good on me, I definitely feel like it's been a bit of a crutch. What if Karen says I shouldn't be wearing brown?!?!

Thank goodness Karen did not say I couldn't wear brown because if that was the case, I'd have to get rid most of my closet. She actually said that it IS one of the colors that looks good on me and that it's completely acceptable for me to wear it. And that I could tell my friends she said that when they give me a hard time! But what Karen showed me through by going through all the colors is that there are other colors that compliment my coloring well also and that I can use brown as my base color like most people do with black and layer colors and build from there.

So, check me out getting my colors done. It's crazy to see how different I look in different colors!

Friday, June 25, 2010

My Style Makeover Update

I have officially started on my style journey! You can read my winning entry and more info on the contest here. Here's a little video of me at the end of Style Camp with Karen Hughes of Image Assets. Now that I know my style personality and have a better idea of my porportions and how to dress them, the next step is a closet analysis & a color analysis. I'm hoping to do a more complete post on my style personality and this whole process soon, so watch for that!

I feel like I should note that in this video, I'm wearing the item I brought as an example of something I own that I don't wear often because I don't think it works for me. I'm still not convinced it works for me. What do you think?

Get Fit for Less!

Bathing suit season has arrived! With a week left before the Fourth of July weekend, this is the perfect time to let good deals motivate you to get healthier this summer.

Free Trials
Need a tune up to be ready for the Fourth? Many gyms give free trial periods to let you get a feel for the services they offer. The Metro Atlanta YMCA offers a 7-day free pass for first-time guests at any of their locations, including the Decatur-Dekalb and East Lake YMCAs. Curves on North Decatur Rd. and Snap Fitness in their Decatur and 10 other metro Atlanta locations also offer a week free.

Go Local Deals
Not only does Snap Fitness offer a free 7 days trial pass, but if you have the Go Local Card you get $10 off the enrollment fee at the Glenwood Park & Inman Park locations.
Read my previous article about the Go Local Card for more information and go get one because the health & fitness deals include 10% off all charges at Condition Kettlebell Gym on Auburn Ave. and great discounts to make sure your mind & body are healthy at places like Dragonfly Reiki on E. Parkwood Rd., Decatur Healing Arts on New St. and Bikram Yoga Decatur on Clairmont Rd.

Free personal training
Looking for one-on-one attention? Most personal trainers will offer one free session so that you can get to know their personal style. Though I don't encourage constant hopping to new trainers just to get free sessions, if you're looking for a personal trainer, make sure you look for one that gives you the first session free.

Decatur Active Living
The City of Decatur has a terrific Decatur Active Living program to help inspire you to get moving. Aside from attending their great free and cheap offerings, follow the Decatur Active Living blog for updates and news.
In a brilliant partnership, the City of Decatur has joined forces with the Kaiser Permanente Corporate Run/Walk which will take place on September 16 in Downtown Atlanta. Join "Team Decatur" and train for the 5K through free classes, full training programs and fitness walks.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Whether you love soccer or barely know what the keeper does, the World Cup is a fun, international event to follow and a great excuse to throw a party! With a few more weeks left in World Cup 2010 in South Africa, here are some ways to fake enthusiasm if "football" isn't your thing OR if you're a huge fan, here are ways to celebrate the world's largest sporting event without spending the money on a jersey.

Drink like a South African
If you have not tried Amarula, a South African cream liquor, then the World Cup is a great excuse. Made of the Marula Fruit, it is similar to Irish Cream but with a slight fruitiness that is great with milk & ice. I hear it's also quite good with soy milk, which basically makes it a health beverage in my book. It's available at most liquor stores (next to the irish creams), comes in a nice bottle with an elephant on the label that makes a perfect gift, and it's only about $18.
Amarula too expensive for you? Then grab a six-pack of Miller Lite! South African Breweries (SAB) acquired Miller Brewing in 2002. Also look for the more authentic Castle Lager, the original SAB brew.

Celebrate like a South African
Have you heard all the fuss about the vuvuzela? This South African horn is behind the droning buzzing noise heard in the background of every World Cup game this year. It's a fun word to say, so if the game isn't your thing, you can always talk about the vuvuzela. If you'd like to bring that celebratory noise to your own party, there are quite a few free iPhone applications, some even where you blow into the microphone like you're blowing into an actual vuvuzela! If you can't stand the sound that makes you think the tv is broken, and you happen to be a bit of a techie, there are ways to filter out the horns and enjoy a vuvuzela-free game.

Watch the World Cup
With the games being broadcast on ABC & ESPN, which are available on basic cable, you can watch the game at home, the gym or at countless bars and pubs. Use "watching the game" as an excuse to support a great charity and visit a bar that is participating in the Atlanta International Soccer Fest where a portion of proceeds from your food & drink will go to SOS Children's Villages, an international nonprofit building family-like community homes for orphaned and abandoned children.

Vuvuzelas in Atlanta?
Want to see Atlanta host the World Cup in 2018 or 2022? Atlanta is one of the cities listed in the US bid, so you can sign the petition to show your support.

Enjoy the games!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Beat the Dirty, Hot Summer Blues

Summer is already here and somehow I skipped right over spring cleaning! Since everything is lighter and simpler in the heat of the summer, here are a few frugal finds to keep your house clean & airy!

Beat the Heat with Fresh Air

Can you remember the last time you replaced your air conditioner's filter? According to the A/C tech who was holding my embarrassingly filthy air filter, it should be changed every three months. With the summer growing hotter, it's worth the small investment for fresh air. Mine cost only $3.99 from Home Depot on the suggestion of the previously mentioned A/C tech that as long as I replaced it every three months, it was not necessary to buy the more expensive filters. That's what I like to hear!

Need a fan that doesn't mess around? Smith Ace Hardware on E. College has three-speed box fans for $10 (through the end of June) and at only 4 inches deep, it doesn't take up the whole space it's trying to cool. I can smell the fresh & frugal air already!

Housecleaning Shortcuts

I really never like vacuuming, but it's especially hard to get motivated in the summer. Enter: Swiffer and Febreeze. Request your Home Made Simple Coupon Booklet with over $30 in coupons on Proctor & Gamble home products like Mr. Clean, Dawn, Swiffer and Febreeze.

I've been having a little too much fun cleaning my kitchen with the new Soft Scrub Total Kitchen Cleaner. As a member of the Soft Scrub Club I received a free bottle and it turned out to be well worth the jests from my husband for being a member of something called the Soft Scrub Club. Their kitchen cleaner sprays and foams and even sprays upside down which means I can spin the bottle like I'm a wild west gun slinger and still clean the stove. That's important to me in a kitchen cleaner. Try it for 75 cents less by printing your online coupon.

I'm already working up a sweat just from writing about cleaning! Enjoy the summer!

Friday, May 28, 2010

Arts & Culture on the Cheap

I love this website, Atlanta PlanIt, Started in 2004 by the Metro Atlanta Arts and Culture Coalition and now housed at Public Broadcasting Atlanta, Atlanta PlanIt gives a HUGE listing of a large variety of events from museum openings to concerts to family-friendly happenings and everything in between. In short, it's completely awesome and lists everything that's going on that you would ever want to go to and some things that make you wonder who does go to them!

By entering a zip code, you can search "Near Me" and easily find events, ongoing & limited run, in your neighborhood. The site was clearly designed for those of us who are concerned about our wallets, by having a tab labelled Free at the top of the site and listing Free or Buy Tickets next to each listing that comes up in the zip code search. SOO handy!

Along with the Atlanta PlanIt event listings, Public Broadcasting Atlanta has just released their new PBA Advantage Card. For a donation of $35 or more, you get a discount card bearing an impressive list of discounts like Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Atlanta Opera, Alliance Theatre and the High Museum, but also incredible 2-for-1 ticket deals for the Atlanta History Center, Horizon Theatre, Atlanta Gay Men's Chorus and a TON more. With the ample 2-for-1 offerings, this card will pay for itself in just one or two uses and help encourage you to get cultured this summer. Is it cultured to scream in joy at these great deals?

Go get your PBA Advantage Card here.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Gettin' More Fabulous!

Frugal n' Fab in the ATL got a facelift! Hope you like the new brighter look and added navigation. Click on the "Frugal n' Fab in Decatur" tab above and see my "Frugal n' Fab in Decatur" columns. That's correct, I'm now writing a weekly feature for Decatur News Online. !!! It is incredibly fun! In other personal news, I am thrilled to announce that I won the "Sofie made me do it!" style makeover contest sponsored by Image Assets. As a part of the incredible package I've won, I'll be blogging on their website (and re-posting here!) throughout the summer. See the My Style Makeover tab for updates on how that's going and to read my winning essay. Be sure to follow me on twitter @frugalfabATL so you can keep up with me!