I know I’ve been AWOL from this blog for a while. I’m taking my master’s degree, and any spare time that I have to play around on the computer is no longer blogging time, but thesis writing time. Whoo-hoo!

I’m finally starting to get a handle on my thesis and paper writing, so I have been toying with the idea of coming back to blogging. I’ve decided, though, that I’m ready for a new project.

I have enjoyed Furnished Souls so much, but I realize that I’ve been all over the shop on this blog. Fashion, interior design, beauty, hair, travel–I’ve covered it all. I am ready to narrow my focus, so I’ve started an accessories blog! Please come and visit me at my new blog, Bedeck! I’m excited about this change, and hope you’ll visit me over there, as I’ll still be finding some great style options for your wardrobe.

Come on over and check me out at!

Little Black Bag Unboxing

Check out what I got in my Little Black Bag! I had a little issue with my video recording, and then I had a little issue with my video, but I got the basics in there.

What I had to cut out was the advice on shopping Little Black Bag. Since I traded, and traded, and traded, I came up with a couple of guidelines:

1. Make decent offers. You waste people’s time when you offer a $14 pair of earrings for a $65 necklace. It’s annoying, and it doesn’t work, because for every $14 item you’re offering, someone is offering double or triple that value.

2. Handbags are impossible to trade for. Let one go, and likely it’s gone forever.

3. Patience is key. Your ideal trade might be right around the corner, but it might take a little longer. You have seven days–this particular bag took me six days to trade.

All in all, I’m partially satisfied with this bag. I’m returning the taupe necklace, and the wall decals, because they actually have the black frame printed on a cream background, which doesn’t match my wall color, so they don’t look good. The nail decals are great, though!

This Week Inspired By:

Anna and the French Kiss and Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

Oh, YA fiction. You are like a mistress I just keep coming back to. I try to only read YA that is highly recommended, and I saw a bunch of my friends on Twitter talking about these books a couple of months ago. It’s taken me a while to get around to it, but I managed to read both of these within 24 hours today. I slept little and snuck reading into my work day. And now I’m sad that it’s over. Signs of a good book! I think I like Lola a little more, because the characters are a little quirkier, (and Anna shows up there, too), but I love them both. Which brings me to…


City of Lights! The city I could/should/kind of do love. Allow me to explain.

In college (I was just a couple of years older than Anna!), I finally got to visit Paris. I went with one of my best besties, who I love. However, I discovered once we got there, that my friend did not like art. Or great food. Or history. Or culture. Or basically anything Paris had to offer. Except for architecture, but she got bored of that pretty fast. And we were poor; too poor to drink, too poor to eat well, to poor to take public transit, too poor to afford anything but a hostel, too poor to even go up the Eiffel Tower. And then I got sick mid-week, and we were locked out of our hostel in the rain. Needless to say, Paris is my do-over city.

I am ready to live la belle vie in Paris. I need my do-over.

Quote of the Week

My writing sample for my master’s application is not going well.

Song of the Week
Foux da Fa Fa by Flight of the Conchords

You know. To go with the Paris theme.

Who wants to plan a trip to Paris with me?

Chevron Skirt, Yellow Shoes=Whole Lotta Cute

Twitter is the best thing ever. I am convinced. (And just as I wrote this, Dwight Shrute said “I really ought to have a Tweeter account.” WIN.)

And it is also seriously helpful tool for ideas for the blog! My Twitter friend @KandNandB asked for a little advice on putting an outfit together with a skirt and shoes that she already owns. The shoes are yellow, the skirt is navy and white.

Look at the cute shoes!

The platforms and the jersey skirt (you’ll see in a moment!) are casual enough to pick a knit top, be it a t-shirt knit or a thin sweater. Also appropriate: chiffon. For a layered look, a casual blazer (in a shrunken shape) is fab. I stuck to the basic yellow/navy/white color palette, because the chevron is bold enough that you don’t have to do anything too crazy to offset it. (I also love the skirt and want it for myself.)

Yellow and Navy and White

And bonus: jewelry to complete the look! I stuck with casual, bold, and bright costume jewelry.

Yellow and Blue and White Jewelry

Thanks for the opportunity, @KandNandB! Hope you find something you like!

What Are You Waiting For?

I definitely am a gal who lives on a restrictive budget.  Teacher’s incomes are notoriously laughable, but I am always determined to be as stylish and polished as possible.  (Et voila, le blog!)

Still, we all have our lusts and I am included in that.  I have a couple of brands that I watch like a hawk for the possibility of sales.  Over spring break, my vigilance paid off!  



Hayden Harnett has quality leather goods, and not a lot of great sales on their fantastic handbags. Seems to me that most of the time anything good got snatched up before I could decide to pull the trigger. But I happened to click on a link from HH’s Twitter account (@HaydenHarnett) and got into their Easter Sale early enough to see the Cargo Cult Satchel on sale in black, down from $285 to $71! Luscious lamb leather, in my hands, RIGHT NOW. And the straps are the perfect length, and it has amazing pockets. It’s delicious, and worth waiting for!

That would be my top tip for snagging great items in a sale: follow (and check) their Twitter! If they’re good with Twitter, that is. If so, you’ll be on the inside track to get those coveted lust list items!

What brands will you/do you wait forever for a great sale?

This Week Inspired By…

Everybody needs some inspiration. My inspirations for this week:

Lola Montez

Not admirable, but jaw-dropping. In brief (there is so much more than this!): An Irish girl who went to Spain, learned to dance (badly), went to Bavaria (pretending she was Spanish), performed a tarantella dance where she pretended there were spiders all over her skirt (just so she could lift it high). Carried a whip. Bedded a king (Ludwig of Bavaria), who built her a castle. Got chased out of Bavaria by angry Bavarians. Opened a cabaret in California during the Gold Rush, where she was the only performer. Died alone and unrecognized on the streets of New York. My favorite Lola story is as follows: She had an affair with composer Franz Liszt (a notorious womanizer himself). His exit strategy out of that relationship was to lock her into their hotel room while she slept, and leave money at the front desk for all the furniture he knew she would break when she woke up. And yes, “Whatever Lola Wants” is based on Lola Montez.

My Daguerreotype Boyfriend

This Tumblr account is rocking my world.* Pictures of hot guys throughout history.

*(This guy’s plaid pants are also rocking my world.)

The Week’s Mantra:

Song of the Week (or the month, or the year, or until I get tired of it, which seems like will NEVER happen)

Gotye featuring Kimbra
Somebody I Used to Know

What are your inspirations for the week ahead?

I Work Out

I have noticed something quite problematic at the gym. If you’re not a full-time gym bunny, it’s all free promotional tees and baggy pants for workout wear. Is there any reason you can’t look decent at the gym?

I’ll tell you a secret: I am a wee bit intimidated in my gym. Not by the ladies, actually, because they are of the aforementioned promotional tees. I am intimidated by all the hot guys. I like to work out in the cardio theater–a darkened room where they play movies. I could go into the women-only room, but it’s boring, and the only TV is a live feed from the child care room. So I work out with all the hot guys who I’m pretty sure work out for the entire duration of the movie. It also looks out on the free weights. So…much beefcake. I’d like to look halfway decent, even when I’m sweating.

I’ve decided on two different gym looks: Flashdance and Short Skirt. I’ve got some girls to my front (aka boobs), so I’m finding that doubling up on sports bras is best. I’m also basing my look on slightly showing off those bras, which I buy in bright colors. So off-the-shoulder and deep vees for me.

Flashdance-inspired Workout Clothes

Oversized shirt, $15
Champion sports activewear, $26
Champion sports activewear, $26
Mesh socks, $13
NIKE mesh shoes, $50

Sporty Shorty Athletic Wear

T shirt, $7.99
Nike activewear, $58
Forever 21 sports bra, $13
H M sports bra, £13
Puma shoes, $48

Best of all–you don’t have to be gym hot to wear these looks. I actually prefer my tennis skirt look with a longer legging; but smart girls always wear some kind of lycra underneath to prevent chafing.

I also found my gym mantra: “Strong mind, strong body.” I know I have a strong mind, now I need to use that to create a strong body.

What are you wearing to the gym? Do you have a mantra? Share!

And…since this is already in my head:


I imagine looking through the archives at Dior when I see this photo essay. Imagine what it might have been like to work there in the late ’40′s? This is amazing.

Originally posted on LIFE:

In March 1948, LIFE introduced its readers to a pioneering French fashion designer and what the magazine called his “revolutionary”vision. The monsieur in question was none other than (in writer Jeanne Perkins marvelous characterization) “a timid, middle-aged, insignificant-looking little Frenchman named Christian Dior,” and the fashion earthquake he unleashed was something called, simply and unforgettably, the New Look.

Here, not only offers a glimpse back at a seminal moment in fashion history, but presents pictures — some that appeared in the magazine, many that were never published — by some of LIFE’s finest photographers, taken at a Dior show in Paris in 1948, when the New Look was all the rage and a timid, middle-aged, insignificant-looking little Frenchman astonished and thrilled the couture world.

Below is an abridged version of the article that ran in the March 1, 1948, issue of LIFE, beneath the one-word headline: DIOR.

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