Dolce & Gabbana

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All things lace have had my attention the past few months and I am so glad I finally jumped on board with this dress. The fabric detail and cut are so spectacular I keep wanting to wear it every day. Luckily, blogging more has inadvertently encouraged me to get more creative with my closet and stop cycling through the same outfits for client meetings. No more playing the game of, “Did I wear this to our last meeting or was that a different client?” Ha!

This vintage Dolce & Gabbana jacket is one of the best purchases I have ever made. It elevates every outfit and is so versatile. Now that we live near a number of fantastic vintage shops, I can’t wait to incorporate more of these beautifully ethical finds into my wardrobe.

Outfit details while shopping to make a difference:

WHAT I WORE BRAND GRADE
Black jacket Vintage Dolce & Gabbana (also like this one on sale) A
Lace dress Zara C
Black infinity bracelet Banana Republic (old, cute Etsy option here and recycled metal here) A (for alt.)
Round sunglasses Old, love these from ASOS and still want these Prada via Nordstrom B+
Nude heels Old and very worn so saving up – maybe these vegan Stella McCartney pumps or some amazing Jimmy Choos? C
Black tote Coach (old), love this one from Ann Taylor C

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We’re building out our new master closet this weekend – and I’ll be dreaming of stocking it with pretty much the entire Dolce & Gabbana collection.

I’m also expanding my business soon and can’t wait to dive into things! Biz dev and renos? Let’s do this. #getitgirl

Xo, Sarah

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Snake Print Pencil Skirt

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Finding outfits that express your personal style but still feel like they go with the flow of my clients’ offices can be tricky. Enter: layering. A floaty, cropped tank paired with a chic, statement pencil skirt, and I’m in love.

Walking Coco and Chanel is one of my favorite things to do, especially at the end of the work day because by then, their puppy energy is beginning to wear off and we can focus more on exploring our new neighborhood rather than burning off steam. This often results in a lot of practice with “drop it,” haha.

Outfit details while shopping to make a difference:

WHAT I WORE BRAND GRADE
Floaty crop top Zara (sold out, very similar) C
Snake print pencil skirt Ann Taylor (sold out, love this one or this ASOS option) C
Encrusted necklace Zara (similar via Nordstrom) C
Reflective sunglasses H&M (old, similar ASOS here and here) C
Black heels Calvin Klein via Nordstrom Rack (fab Cole Haan here and here) B+
White handbag Zara, get it before it’s discontinued! C

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After learning about Ann Taylor’s work to support women’s rights and ethical business with their “Responsibly Ann” initiative, I was smitten with the brand. Supporting brands that make it easy to look good and do good is what this is all about.

Xo, Sarah

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Black Outfit, Green Fashion

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Organic cotton top and pants with 60% recycled content? Yes, please. This comfortable outfit was perfect for a day of packing up our old place just before the big move.

Incorporating ethical shopping into my everyday living has been a challenge, but a worthy one. Little by little, I’ve been able to find my new favorite brands and stores and am learning where to look to find what I need. This outfit is a great showcase of that, and the growing trend of more transparency in corporate ethics and the increasing availability of eco-friendly options.

Outfit details while shopping to make a difference:

WHAT I WORE BRAND GRADE
Organic cotton tank top Zara, only $9.90 C
60%-recycled-content pants H&M Conscious, only $19.99 C
Pavé links bracelet Old Baublebar, cute Etsy option here to support small biz A (for alt.)
Infinity bracelet Banana Republic, love this Etsy option made with recycled metal B+
Gold “love you” necklace Gift from my husband via Etsy (sold out), similar here via Nordstrom A
Red nail polish Mineral Fusion in Crimson Clay via Whole Foods A

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(Get 20% off these ASOS options with code WEBEGRILLIN)

Finds like these makes me feel like I am making a difference. I am currently building a page to make it easy to find favorite stores and will be sharing one of my most challenging projects soon: the switch to eco-friendly, cruelty-free, luxurious beauty products.

It shouldn’t be difficult to make ethical shopping choices – we all face plenty of hard decisions in life anyway. Let’s support the brands and retailers who are doing their best to be good to the world.

Xo, Sarah

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Fashion Blogger Office

Sarah's Ambitions | Blogger at Home: Office Style

A peaceful, pretty home centers me. We just moved to our new place (guys – we got the rental house!), but I wanted to share some snippets of the design I created in our old apartment. First up, my office: the true hub of the home.

This is where I spend sometimes over 80 hours a week. My office needs to be functional, comfortable and beautiful. I am a real estate marketing and business development consultant, which is a lot of fun for me. Working in a field that requires both analytical and creative capabilities, I need my office space to offer both focus and inspiration.

Seeing these pictures has me antsy to settle into our new home! I value a lovely living space above any other luxury. As stated by the great architect Frank Lloyd Wright, “If you wisely invest in beauty, it will remain with you all the days of your life.”

Sarah's Ambitions | Blogger at Home: Office Style

All-white desk furniture keeps things simple and chic, letting me easily add pops of color and edit the palette in an instant.

Sarah's Ambitions | Blogger at Home: Office Style

This magnetic mood board makes it easy to change out my inspirational pieces. Just before our move, I had a sketch I’d drawn, a test Polaroid, my feature in the San Francisco Chronicle from last year and a personal #getitgirl quote I love.

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A simple picture rail from IKEA displays my favorite pictures, sketches and books of the moment. There is also a box from favorite candy bar – strawberries & champagne – that I purchased at Dylan’s Candy Bar on a trip to LA.

Sarah's Ambitions | Blogger at Home: Office Style

The definition of a #getitgirl.

Sarah's Ambitions | Blogger at Home: Office Style

My husband gave me this book of “Pep Talks & Picker-Uppers” when I launched my marketing career, just after moving to California. I kept it in my first office desk, and it’s a happy reminder of how hard I’ve worked and how far I’ve come.

Sarah's Ambitions | Blogger at Home: Office Style

Having a chaise lounge next to the balcony window creates a perfect spot for the puppies to nap (and stockpile toys). This is a must-have for my new space and I can’t wait to style it.

Sarah's Ambitions | Blogger at Home: Office Style

I added a touch of green just inside the balcony with these fake plants and used this as an opportunity to display a family heirloom, the rolling pin my grandma used in the parish kitchen where she raised her eleven children in rural Minnesota. It makes me feel like I have a little piece of my heritage with me.

Since the chaise lounge provided a perfect viewing perch for my puppies to see over the balcony and catch a glimpse of “intruders!!!” in the parking lot across the street, I used a tension rod and café curtains halfway up the window to keep us all safe and still sunlit. ;)

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These are a few of my favorite things: this dresser is half client samples and half art supplies, stationery and photography equipment.

Sarah's Ambitions | Blogger at Home: Office Style

These custom Bow & Drape sweatshirts for Coco and Chanel are so perfect I almost can’t. I pinned these tiny tops to the wall with some of my sewing pins – smaller holes that are easier to fill upon move-out :)

Sarah's Ambitions | Blogger at Home: Office Style

Now that we are starting to settle into our new place, I can’t wait to incorporate some of my favorite décor pieces and add personalized touches. My office still has all of the non-essentials in boxes, but my desk and the puppies’ chaise lounge are obviously in place.

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Stay tuned for more interior style! Now that we have an entire home to decorate, I am so excited to dive into design.

Xo, Sarah

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Striped Shift Dress

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Honestly, the past few weeks have been a doozy. Sometimes, the best thing to do in response to  opposition – whether it be the unpredictable forces of life, a colleague that disappoints you, the checklist that grows by five every time you cross off two – is to just GSD. Get stuff done.

Take that moment to cry because sometimes the world isn’t fair in people’s lives. Momentarily furrow your brow, then let it melt away. Sigh in frustration, but then take a deep breath in and fill your reserves once more. And then, press on.

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Outfit details while shopping to make a difference:

WHAT I WORE BRAND GRADE
Striped shift dress Zara C
Black jacket Vintage Dolce & Gabbana via Encore in Burlingame A
Pointed-toe heels Calvin Klein via Nordstrom Rack (sold out, similarly cut shoe here via J.Crew) C
Black and lime sunglasses Banana Republic (get 40% off today online and in stores with code BRFORTY) B+
Black, semi-structured, faux leather handbag Zara (yes, I bought it in black and in white – it’s only $36!) C
Gold “love you” necklace Gift from my husband via Etsy, similar here via Nordstrom A
Rich pink lip gloss NYX Mega Shine Lip Gloss in “Tea Rose” via Nordstrom Rack B+
Men’s silver and gold watch Old Invicta, similar here from Burberry, and so many great ones at Nordstrom C+

Learn how I grade my purchases with The Better World Shopping Guide

“Opportunity is missed by most people because it’s dressed in overalls and looks like work.”

Well, Edison, I’ll take my overalls as a striped shift dress with a side of coffee and at-my-desk puppy snuggles. And I’m equally unafraid of trying over 1,600 times to get it right. ;) #getitgirl

Xo, Sarah

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Crop Top + High Waist

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My husband and I are nearing five years together, and between that and applying for a rental house we really adore (fingers extra-crossed), we had a lot to almost-celebrate. So we almost made reservations, and instead ended up at the chef’s bar at Scratch in Mountain View. Dinner and drinks were delicious and it was just the date night we needed.

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Outfit details while shopping to make a difference:

WHAT I WORE BRAND GRADE
Tweed crop top Zara C
High-waist pants Old BCBG, love these CONSCIOUS H&M pants C
Pointed-toe heels Calvin Klein via Nordstrom Rack C
Faux leather jacket Old Target, great ASOS alternative here (free 2-day shipping with code EXPRESSUSA) C
Black, semi-structured, faux leather handbag Zara (yes, I bought it in black and in white – it’s only $36!) C
Sheer pink lip gloss NYX Butter Gloss in “Creme Brulee” via Nordstrom Rack B+

Learn how I grade my purchases with The Better World Shopping Guide

Since I work in luxury real estate marketing and business development on the San Francisco Peninsula, the fact that this market is incredibly robust makes what I do even more exciting. On the flip side, as a participant in the salmon run of renters fighting the current to move upstream, it can get frustrating. Hashtag love-hate relationship. I have a lot of hope riding on this story ending well!

Xo, Sarah

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Incognito in Paris

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If I was going to be a Parisian spy, this is what I’d wear. I would be terrible at it, but I would feel like my style was working with the crowds. It’s all about the way you choose to feel, no?

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Outfit details while shopping to make a difference:

WHAT I WORE BRAND GRADE
Soft white shirt Amour Vert A
Fit-and-flare black skirt Zara C
Black leather flats Sam Edelman via Nordstrom B+
Faux leather jacket Old Target, great ASOS alternative here C
White, semi-structured, faux leather handbag Zara C
Oversize sunglasses Dior via Nordstrom B+
Gold “loveyou” necklace Etsy, gift from my husband (sold out, similar here) A
Pale pink nail polish Mineral Fusion in “Blushing Crystal” via Whole Foods A

Learn how I grade my purchases with The Better World Shopping Guide

I wore this for a day of weekend fun with my husband. It was pretty chilly by the time we took these pictures – I can’t wait for California summer.

My favorite thing about this outfit is that Amour Vert planted a tree when I bought this top. Look good, feel good, do good.

Xo, Sarah

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Float On

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Friday style: add equal parts floaty tank, messy bun, grayscale fashion and happy hour.

Don’t worry, even if things end up a bit too heavy, we’ll all float on alright.

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Outfit details while shopping to make a difference:

WHAT I WORE BRAND GRADE
Floaty white tank Zara C
Skinny waxed denim H&M C
Strappy black heels Zara (new version here) C
Faux leather jacket Old Target, great ASOS alternative here (save 20% with code XTRA20) C
White, semi-structured, faux leather handbag Zara C
Oversize sunglasses Dior via Nordstrom B+
Pavé charm necklace H&M, also love this Etsy option C/A
Oversize jewel ring Nordstrom Rack, my gift to myself after a big career win (this one is beautiful) B+
Pale pink nail polish Mineral Fusion in “Blushing Crystal” via Whole Foods A
Sheer pink lip gloss NYX Butter Gloss in “Creme Brulee” via Nordstrom Rack B+

Learn how I grade my purchases with The Better World Shopping Guide

Xo, Sarah

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Dancing in the Rain

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Adding a splash of pink to this drizzly day was just what the gray weather needed. The ballerina theme continued with my high bun, now my go-to hairstyle for rain. With a few spritzes of my new favorite hairspray, I was good to go. Switching to cruelty-free beauty products has been quite the project, and I am excited to share a roundup of my finds soon!

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Outfit details while shopping to make a difference:

WHAT I WORE BRAND GRADE
Ballerina-pink sweater Zara C
Faux-leather leggings H&M C
Black trench coat H&M C
Black stiletto booties Old Ralph Lauren, love this style at Ann Taylor C
White, semi-structured handbag Zara C
Pavé charm necklace H&M, also love this Etsy option C/A
Rose-pink nail polish Mineral Fusion in “Jewel” via Whole Foods A
Sheer pink lip gloss NYX Butter Gloss in “Creme Brulee” via Nordstrom Rack B+
 Pink umbrella  Totes C

Learn how I grade my purchases with The Better World Shopping Guide

We took these photos before last week’s sad events. Sometimes, blogging about personal style can feel very vain, but I hope that by sharing a piece of myself and the ways I strive to live responsibly will both inspire others – and me – to do more. Life has definitely not just moved on for David and me, and I am not sure how, exactly, it will. I am so happy to have my boo by my side and am very grateful for the support we have received. Being silly together, crying together, being together: that is how we will heal.

Xo, Sarah

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The Perfect Boyfriend Jean

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After hunting everywhere for the perfectly loose boyfriend jean at all of my favorite stores and striking out, I thought it would be a stroke of pure luck to find something that fit my tall frame without overwhelming my legs. Then I read Kim’s post about boyfriend vs. boy jeans and saw her amazing find from Zara.

I immediately went on the hunt, scouring every level of the store. I finally found that same pair – but alas, they were far too short on me. Then that luck finally hit. Hiding behind a jacket, I saw some jeans that looked both long enough and not-too-destroyed. Gold had been struck!

Outfit details while shopping to make a difference:

WHAT I WORE BRAND GRADE
Boy fit jeans Zara C
Sleeveless turtleneck DIY cut from old top with too-short sleeves, similar here A
Black and white scarf Zara C
Faux leather jacket Old Target, similar here C
White, semi-structured handbag Zara C
Black heels Calvin Klein via Nordstrom Rack B+
Black men’s sunglasses Kenneth Cole Reaction via Nordstrom Rack B+
Black and silver watch Kenneth Cole Reaction via Nordstrom Rack B+
Rose-pink nail polish Mineral Fusion in “Jewel” via Whole Foods A
Sheer pink lip gloss NYX Butter Gloss in “Creme Brulee” via Nordstrom Rack B+

Learn how I grade my purchases with The Better World Shopping Guide

My perfect boyfriend jean is actually a boy jean. I can’t stop wearing them! They’re not so loose that they fall down or catch when I’m walking, and they also still look good with a top that has a little volume. I think I’m going to buy them in every color.

Xo, Sarah

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