Preview

March 20, 2008 - Leave a Response

Coming soon to f&f….

 Now that my digital camera is working again (yay!) and I am about to send out my wedding invitations, I am going to post on how I made my own wedding invitations for less than $100 and give you some great wedding tips.

Don’t miss it!

Urban Rituelle Lip Balm

March 20, 2008 - Leave a Response

Anthropologie is one of my favorite stores. I love the style of everything there – its quirky and vintage, and so me. The only problem is, rarely can I afford anything there! Their home products aren’t so bad, but their clothes are outrageous. While browsing our brand new Huntsville store yesterday, I came across one fabulous find.

Urban Rituelle Lip Balm, $8

$8.00 for a lip balm? You might say that’s not so frugal. And, it IS kind of a splurge. But, if you’re an addict like I am, this stuff makes a lot of sense. It’s in a very cute, 0.71 oz tin, which is actually rather large. It also is very dense, making it hard to use tons of balm at once, which I am very bad about. I could see this stuff lasting a very long time… defintely outlasting my usual stick lip balm. It also feels wonderful on your lips and makes them oh so soft. Another great thing is it doesn’t have much flavor, which I like because (sadly) I tend to kind of lick my lips more if the lip balm tastes sweet. The good thing is, it smells wonderful. I got the peaches and cream variety since I adore anything peach, but I am sure their other flavors are wonderful as well.

So, for all of you lip balm lovers out there, this may be a great find. I hope you love it just as much as I do.

The White Aisle

March 4, 2008 - Leave a Response

I recently found this amazingly refreshing site, www.whiteaisle.com, while browsing wedding sites. I had grown very weary of the same old, cookie-cutter, cutesy traditional wedding fare. White Aisle was a breath of fresh air! They sell inexpensive and super sophisticated vintage-look stationery, bridal jewelry, and more. So many fabulous finds here! Best of all, they employ women in Cambodia who make beautiful silk pillows, flowers, and wraps, helping them get out of the sex trade. They also work to help fund schools in Cambodia. Read more about the company here: http://www.whiteaisle.com/aboutus.htm.

Here are some of my favorite White Aisle finds.

1. Silk Sashes, $15 for short sash, $20 for long

Description from the website:

“These silk dress sashes are each handmade in Phnom Penh, Cambodia by one of the many young women trying to move their lives forward after being victims of sex trafficking. 100% of the profit for this item will go back to the local day center we work with. It will pay the salaries of these girls, and expand the facility to include full time housing so that they no longer have to go to the brothels in the evenings. This program not only provides them with income, but also a new skill and a feeling of empowerment. It’s a first step out of what is an unimaginable life for most of us.

The fabric used is local hand loomed Khmer (Cambodian) silk. We tried to keep these as simple and elegant as possible in an effort to make them suit most any event. They can be tied into a knot or a bow, and can be wrapped towards the front or back.”

 These sashes are beautiful, and 100% of the profit goes to help the women of Cambodia. What more could you ask for? These would make lovely sashes for bridesmaids’ dresses.

2. Antoinette Ring Box, $24.99

This beautiful ring box would look lovely atop any girl’s dresser. I think it would make a wonderful, practical bridesmaid’s gift or gift for any occasion!

3. White Aisle Jewelry, about $15 and up, http://www.whiteaisle.com/jewelrycategories.htm

I was going to pick just one product to talk about but could not do it! All of White Aisle’s jewelry is gorgeous, fine quality, and reasonably priced. I wish I had found this website long, long ago!

3. Do it Yourself Program Kit, $1.50 http://www.whiteaisle.com/programs.htm

I can’t say enough good things about these programs. They are modern, elegant, unique, and completely personalized. The covers come printed with your design, with holes already punched and ribbon already measured. All you have to do is print the inside pages with whatever you like and put them together. I recently made my own invitations completely from scratch – without the help of a DIY kit. We saved money, but it was A LOT of work (my amazingly wonderful bridesmaids can attest to that).  These programs save you much sanity, time, and money because they cost just as much or less than what you would spend if you bought everything yourself to make something similar. I plan on purchasing a White Aisle Do it Yourself Kit for my wedding programs within the next few weeks. I just wish I had known about this site before I decided to make my invitations myself!

Expect to see a lot more frugal and fabulous finds from White Aisle. In my opinion, there is no better destination for wedding stationery, favors, and other products!

steal & splurge – first post

February 26, 2008 - 2 Responses

For the very first post here at frugal and fabulous, I’ve decided to do a “steal and splurge”. This is where I’ll review at least two products, one that’s a definite bargain that allows you to “splurge” a little more somewhere else. Today’s Steal & Splurge is the beauty & cosmetics category. It’s something that is important to every woman’s beauty regimen, no matter if it takes her five minutes or forty five minutes (or more!) to get ready in the morning.

 First up, the steal.

Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser, $5 – $6 at most retail stores (Target, Wal-Mart, CVS, etc)

I’d heard about Cetaphil for a long time. It’s one of those old “stand-bys” that’s been around forever. But for so long I’d never been able to bring myself to using it. I mean, I admit, I am your classic “girly girl”. When it comes to cosmetics and beauty products, I want luxury. And the bottle of old fashioned Cetaphil doesn’t say that at all. But, I kept hearing about how wonderful it was and reading about it, too. In fact, Hollywood actress Kate Hudson is a fan.

 

I mean, look at her skin. Who wouldn’t want to try it? So, I bought a bottle. It was about $6 at Target for a HUGE bottle. I mean, this thing will last a LONG time. Defintely a bargain.

And the verdict? It works! It is a lot different than your typical cleanser. It’s kind of thin and runny, it doesn’t lather luxuriously and it’s not scented. It’s kind of strange to use at first if you’re not used to it. But did it make my skin smooth and soft! I also have not had a blemish since using it. And, when I started using it, the blemishes I did have went away promptly. So I guess tradition proved me wrong on this one. Cetaphil has me hooked – at least until this huge bottle is gone.

Next, the SPLURGE!

 Olay Total Effects Moisturizer, $17, at most retaliers

Moisturizer is arguably the most important beauty tool for a woman. It keeps your skin looking great and shielded from the sun. So, I didn’t mind splurging a little on something that important. And in terms of moisturizers, Olay isn’t even that much of a splurge. Go to a department store, and you can expect to pay at least $30 or more. But for me, on a small budget, this still qualifies as a bit of a splurge. And, boy is it worth it! It has SPF, and fights the 7 signs of aging. It has a lovely, creamy formula that goes on smoothly and leaves my skin soft. I knew Olay was the way to go because my beautiful grandmother who is 80 years old defintely does not look her age, and she uses Olay. It was testament enough for me and I’ve been using it ever since.

Bonus Tip:

The biggest downside to using Cetaphil is it’s not the best at removing eye makeup, so I use Neutrogena Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes.

They come in a convenient case, and are super soft, very gentle, and great at removing pesky eye makeup. They run about $5 at any major retalier.