all wrapped up…………..

Heading in to Fall………we know that it is time to start thinking in terms of layers.  My friend Peggy, at DKNY does an awesome job demonstrating how to wear the Cozy.  DKNY makes the best Cozy Wrap sweaters.  Years ago, I scored one in a big chunky cashmere.  Fabulous! You can get them in silk for summer months, or for Resort travel in the winter.  All imaginable colors!

For this fall,  get the Merino wool cozy.  Charcoal Gray is my favorite. Rich in color, and it goes great with any combination you can imagine.  The black is the easy way out.  Go for the Gray!

Watch Peggy as she makes it so easy for you!  If you already have a similar sweater, try some of these easy tips and see what happens!


This next model shows you how to use 4 different shaped scarves.  It is amazing and she makes it look so easy.  So break out those Hermes scarves you have been storing in their little square boxes and start wearing them!  What in the world are you waiting for?

Don’t have Hermes?  Who cares……..just watch and be inspired.  The video is courtesy of Nordstrom but of course you can get your scarf anywhere……..maybe even right out of your closet!

That’s it for this week.  95 and humid, feeling a bit   s- l- o- w  tonight!

Next week is the holiday and we all know what that means…….Say it ain’t so!!!!

End of summer??? NOOOOOOO!!!!!  Just say NO!

You can eek out another month or two if you just go with the weather and not with the fashion trends……..but who would want to do that?

and….what’s in your closet?

OK……….as promised, let’s see what $10,000 can buy me for a new fall wardrobe!

First stop…….Neiman Marcus…….


I decided that my favorite vendor right now is Philip Lim, so you will see a few key pieces by him.  The snakeskin satchel, my favorite today.  The gunmetal tank top, the silk blouse in that yummy chocolate brown.  All things timeless!





















Pretending that I am still in Chicago for the fall season……..I chose a few jackets that will get me mileage.  A black biker that I can wear with the Chanel boots casually, or with the LBD.  Either works fine.

I had to use over 1/3 of the budget on that gorgeous Burberry Coat.  My friend Wendy recently walked out of Neiman’s sporting that rich gold color, and I loved it!  So why not invest in a 100% Cashmere classic coat?  Delicious!

The DVF Navy tweed jacket will be great with jeans and boots.  I threw in a James Perse t-shirt which can be layered with anything.






















If I had to choose two scarves, these would be the ones.  Both good quality wool and cashmere, with great style and color.

I like to add the prices when I can, but I never shop online.

You can get most of these items at either Neiman Marcus or Bloomingdale’s.  These are the best places in Chicago to shop. (I know, I’m partial).   Theory is always included in promotions, so you can get the basics at Friends and Family or Private Sale at Bloomingdale’s.  Sandro is another new vendor that I love.  They do some great novelty pieces.  T-Shirts and jackets especially.  They only go on sale a few times a year.  So get it when you see it!














OK, I had to have the Jil Sander cable cashmere.  That hurt, but I will have it forever (in my imaginary world that is).  I love the DVF silk blouse over the cami.  So easy with jeans, or the black pants.  Gorgeous!

LLBean classic cardigan……..get a few colors, and buy it in a size too small. I am usually a large, but I would get this in a medium, for a more contemporary fit.  I love a black cardigan over a white t-shirt and jeans, with a pair of comfy loafers!









Another chunky sweater and a timeless silk white top.  Priceless!

oops!  I blew the budget.  And I didn’t get a price on those Chanel boots, so that doesn’t count right?  OK, ok……..I’ll take out the white tshirt!  Sheesh!

I guess I will wait on the Burberry Coat, and hope for a reduction.  In the meantime GIRLS, I JUST WANNA HAVE FUN!

See you next week……..back to reality!  Sigh………



I FALL…….to pieces……..


Up hear in the Northwoods, the leaves are beginning to get dark, and I feel the breeze of fall days trying to sneak in, and get an early start.  It is at this time every year, that I am so torn about my closet.  I mean, I sooooo want to start wearing those new boots still in the box, and that leather jacket I bought in early spring……

But I also want to hang on to my summer just as long as I can.  We wait so long for these precious few days……June through September…..4 months of summer.

My friends in Chicago and New York are wondering “Joyce, it’s August 12….what are you talking about?”……They have been sporting around town in their new fall gear for weeks.  Some of them wear boots all summer.  It can be done in the retail world.  Inside a building, with windows only on the first floor,………you can pretend it’s cold out there! Gotta wear my layers now!

For the next few weeks, I have decided that I will build a fall capsule wardrobe……on a budget!

Just for fun………(I mean, I am in Wisconsin so cut me a break!)

1- Realistic fall budget $1,000

2 – Dream fall budget $10,000

Are you rolling your eyes?  There are many fashionistas out there, that can do it on $100 budget.  Believe me, I see it all the time.  I am a thrift store junkie after all.

But I am usually over in the home section looking for vintage “kitchen” stuff or an heirloom quilt, that some unknowing person dropped off at the back door for a donation.



My sister Pam, the amazing, talented THRIFT STORE stylist, found me this quilt for my cabin for $3…….probably from the 60’s…






Back to my wish list……..let’s start with $1,000 today!

Purses / Boots / Flats / Pants / Jeans / Blouse / Sweater / Dress / Jackets /Scarf



Here is a list of prices and where these items came from, many of them can be found at Bloomingdale’s and Macy’s too!

My total came to $1056 but let’s face it, by the time you place the order there will be an additional markdown ……..happy shopping!

See you next week with the BIG BUDGET!   Heading over to Neiman’s.



































a fresh coat..or two!



I found this video on youtube.  Love it!   It was during Fashion Week, in Paris and was done in 2010!  That seems like forever ago…..but yet, Gance Dure…an adorable style icon and designer, is dressed as I see it, for this fall.  Easy style, leather jacket, pants rolled up, Celine shoes in a brown texture and the gloves are tres chic!

I would also KILL for the Commes des Garcons coat, that the 24 year old was wearing from Tokyo.  Do you  think she might like this designer?  Totally effected!  Love it!

And of course, I love the fashion blogger! Andy Torres, from All H&M, and looking so put together. She is a doll.  That trench coat is just perfect. Light weight and easy to travel in. I have a similar one that I take everywhere from French Connection.

This week I was so ready to get to my blog.  I am in Northern Wisconsin and decided to paint my kitchen cabinets.  They were built in 1950’s and are knotty pine with a heavy lacquer.  Since the cabin is completely built of logs, and there are hardwood floors throughout………well, I needed a bit of color.  So Ivory cabinets were the solution to brighten up the kitchen.

But a fresh coat doesn’t have to pertain to home improvements.  As a coat diva for many years, starting at Saks 5th Ave, I became a collector of them.

Back then the buyers in New York challenged my staff to hit 1 million in the coat department, and though it took every trick in the book…….we rose to the challenge and hit the goal.

My team was trained to tell every client living in the Midwest, that they needed to have at least 7 styles of coats in their closets. 8 if you count the jean jacket!  If they came in owning 4, they left with 3.  Plain and simple………if you wanted to be prepared and stylish in Chicago……7 was the minimum!

Rain Jacket / Rain Coat-Trench / Wool or cashmere Pea Coat or short style wool or cashmere jacket / Wool or Cashmere long coat / Leather Jacket / Shearling-any length / Hooded cold weather Parka

I often assisted in the styling and selection of these important coats.  After all, these were pieces that need to stand the test of time.   I was once told by a dear friend, and Neiman’s Diva, that I found her the one and only favorite coat of all time.  I hope she knows that there are a few in here with her in mind.

Here are some of my favorite styles for this fall.  I love these coats.  I also included a few warm weather jackets, as I need to have something to dream about for Florida.


by Valentino

3ed1498df1c2534b1dc97d163eaacca3by Chloe

56e6ff3a9f840e51be4e77f97ea4bce1by Nina Ricci

















by Sandro

















by Sandro


by Moncler









by Mackage










by Vince

colorblock Wool, reversible wool,

Shearling poncho! I’m obsessed!







by Armani



by Derek Lam




Green Grass Alpaca coat and clutch











by Celine

Well, that’s it for this Monday.  A dreary, rainy day indeed.

Summer is not nearly over my friends……..this was just a little something to get you thinking about the seasons yet to come.  So, get back to whatever you were doing and enjoy the lazy, crazy days of summer!

Until next week……………xo