Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Wedding Wednesday.

L&L Wedding
L&L Wedding
L&L Wedding
dress H&M [similar] necklace Target [similar] shoes Forever 21 [similar] bag Coach sunglasses Forever 21

Well hey, guys! I am back. I was back a few days ago, but I mean, I need a vacation to get over my vacation. I had an amazing [wonderful, perfect] time on my trip and can't wait to tell you all about it [I'm just SO tired]!! I hope you enjoyed the guest posters- and a big THANK YOU to those girls for pitching in around here.

I thought I'd keep today short & sweet as I painfully assimilate back to real life. The whole purpose of my entire vacation was to see my cousin Andy marry his sweet bride Jodee. And this is what I wore to their gorgeous wedding [which will be featured tomorrow]. So shouldn't tomorrow be Wedding Wednesday Thursday and today just be "outfit?" Yes, that would make sense... wouldn't it? Hmm.

Regardless, I got this dress at H&M about a month ago and have been waiting for the perfect occasion to wear it. Since the wedding was in Surf City, USA [Huntington Beach], I dressed it down with some nude sandals & oversized sunnies. This really worked to my benefit later when Back in Time by Pitbull came on and I danced my little heart out. Flats = prime mobility = incredible dance moves.

Check back tomorrow to see more of their WONDERFUL wedding, trust me... you won't want to miss it!! :)

Monday, May 28, 2012

Guest Post: Big City Farm Girl

Yep... I'm STILL on vacation. Today I am en route to gorgeous San Francisco to say a quick hello to my favorite city, then I'll head home to Boise. I've asked my friend Dana @ Big City Farm Girl to share her style... which I love. Enjoy!!!

Hi Everyone, I'm Dana:  a girl who loves fashion, is shoe and accessory obsessed, and loves any and all animals. I'm a girl born and raised on a horse farm and currently residing in New York City working in the fashion industry: in other words, a fashionable farm girl. I'm exciting to be posting over here for Kelli on Leopard & Lavender!  I wanted to share a few photos to let you know a little big more about my life and style. I'm probably one of the few girls who's fashion obsessed that responds to the question - "style or comfort" with "comfort". I'm a firm believer you should feel comfortable in whatever you're wearing (and for those who feel comfortable in 5 inch awesome heels - I'm totally jealous!) Here are a few of my favorite go to looks:

 Wearing my favorite Jcrew maxi shirt and top with my horse Champ.
  Weekend walks in Central Park with my dog Zoe. Comfortable, layered look.
 Loving these floral pants for Spring - I love how easy they are to dress up or down.
NYC fashion working girl! Love how my jobs flexible and I can wear jeans and these pumps to the office!

In order to achieve the comfortable yet stylish look I think it's a great idea to invest in some staple pieces that you love and want to to re-wear. For me, it's a great fitting pair of skinny jeans, black and white tops, and my leather jacket. I wear these pieces multiple times a week - and often all at the same time! I also love to accessorize. A great pair of shoes, statement necklace (like the one Kelli posted about here), or a printed scarf can totally transform your go-to basics into a fashionable ensemble.

I hope you enjoying a peek into my style! For more looks and inspiration - and tips on achieving a comfortable yet fashionable look check out my blog, Big City Farm Girl.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Guest Post: A Bit of Sass "Bathing Beauties"

Hi again! :) Today, Chelsea from A Bit of Sass is here to talk about one of my favorite genres... Swimwear! I'm hoping to log some beach time before the wedding I'm attending this evening, so I couldn't be more pleased to share her post with you.  Be sure to visit her blog later-- all of the posts are this fun! Have a good weekend everyone--- and be sure to check my Instagram [kelliryder] for lots of updates from DISNEYLAND!!

Bathing Beauties:

Hi all, it's Chelsea from A Bit of Sass, filling in for Kelli today. Monday unofficially marks the start of summer here in the States, so now is the perfect time to draw inspiration from the bathing beauties of yesteryear and hit the beach in retro revival swimwear.  

For those of us who are a bit more brazen than Brazilian when it comes to bikinis, retro swimsuits are the way to go. Offered in a variety of cuts from one piece halter tops to high waisted boy short bikinis these styles have a sexy aura without revealing too much skin. Design darlings including Jason Wu, Seafolly, Zink and Norma Kamali have embraced this womanly trend, but the real question is, do you?

1. Jason Wu / 2.  Seafolly  / 3. Norma Kamali / 4. Dolce & Gabanna / 5. Zinke / 6. Topshop / 7. Mara Hoffman

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Guest Post: Second Street East

Today's guest post is from another one of my favorite bloggers, Michelle @ Second Street East. She has an amazing blog with the perfect mix of style + home decor. I hope you enjoy her Outfit to Room post below. Since I am on the road from Vegas to Long Beach, I couldn't be loving [longing for] the room portion more.

Hi! Michelle from Second Street East here! A big thank you to Kelli for letting me say hello while she is off vacationing (jealous, anyone?!) I blog about fashion and interiors and "Outfit to Room" is the favorite feature that I do and I am excited to share it with you today!




Top - J.Crew Factory / Short - Lucky Jeans / Shoes - Zara / Sunnies - RayBan

Coasters / Blanket / Box / Topiary / Pendant / Bench / Centerpiece

Don't forget to come say hi at Second Street East! Thanks again, Kelli!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Guest Post: The Brunette One

Hello Everyone! I am officially ON VACATION [woohoo!!]. As you read this, I will be welcomed by the Las Vegas strip and [hopefully] a tasty treat from Margaritaville!! As I mentioned, I've scheduled a lot of my favorite bloggers to guest post for me while I'm away. Today is my blogging friend Samantha [from the blog The Brunette One]. I adore her blog, and think you will too! Take a look.

Hi! I'm Samantha from The Brunette One! I'm very excited to be guest posting here today at Leopard & Lavender and even more envious of Kelli as she enjoys her extended vacation!  I love remixing and want to share with all of you how to wear one look, three different ways!  I'm all about buying statement pieces but often find myself in a rut when it comes to finding more than one way to style them.  My new rule before purchasing any item is to imagine three ways to style it with items already hanging in my closet! Here are three stylish ways to wear printed pants!
Karen Walker Sunnies // Peplum Top // J.Crew Cafe Capri Pants // Sandals // Spiral Bracelet // River Island Purse

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Bon Voyage!!

Holy Macaroni, I'm going on vacation! An actual vacation!

Bright and early tomorrow [can anyone say 5AM?], my bags will be packed and I'll be hittin' the road with my dad + step mom. First stop, Las Vegas. Then, onward to Long Beach for a wedding. Then, a weekend at Disneyland... UMM. I'VE NEVER BEEN TO DISNEYLAND. HELLO. And then a [very] quick stop in my favorite place, San Francisco. And finally, of course, home again. As you know, I travel a lot [but rarely for such a fun and expansive adventure!!]-- for a reminder of my TRAVEL TIPS [and what one may call, a good laugh], click here.

I have lined up some of my FAVORITE bloggers to guest post for you while I'm away. I think you'll really love the posts- and find some new favorite blogs [if you don't know & love them already...], so be sure to check in to see what fun content is happening around these parts.

If you want- you can follow my fun trip a few different ways [because you KNOW I'll be documenting it].

Or, find me on Instagram. My user name is kelliryder.

Welp. Without further adieu... Seeeeee ya later!

Hair Tutorial: Easy Curls

Hello again! Welcome to another hair tutorial! Today, we conquer CURLING your hair. I use a different technique than most girls- only because I cannot figure out the "wrap" technique. So, I've made this one work for me. You can watch the video here or just view it below [there is definitely a cat cameo in the video]:

One thing to note is that this is the technique I use EVERY time I curl my hair. The only difference is if I want bigger, looser waves- I use a larger iron [1.5 inch] and much larger sections of hair. If I want "going out" hair, I use a smaller curling iron [1 inch] and smaller sections of hair. It is easy and can be as quick [or time consuming] as you make it! 

The product I used in this video is the Aveda Light Elements Smoothing Fluid. It is a little more expensive, but lasts forever [years... and years]. If I ever use hairspray, I prefer the Bumble & Bumble thickening spray

If you have any questions, please let me know!!

ALSO... To see if you won the Stella & Dot giveaway-- click here!

Monday, May 21, 2012

What a Weekend PLUS Last Day to Enter!!

L&L Coffee
My favorite part about weekends in Boise is making a cup of coffee with my Keurig and starting the morning slow. So nice to be able to take that time and prepare for the day.

L&L Treat
Lindy and I decided we deserved some treats. :)

L&L Roxy
 I had a little blogging buddy on Saturday. So sweet of Roxanne to snuggle up as I worked. [for those wondering, the apps used on this picture are Instagram and PicFX]

L&L Lindy
Lindy and I rode our bikes to get [even more] treats. I snapped this in front of the capitol building in Boise. I really, and I mean REALLY, love this city.

L&L FroYo
I can never decide if I want fruity or chocolatey when I get frozen yogurt... SO half and half is good for me!!

L&L Eclipse
On the ride home, we forgot about the whole eclipse thing. LOL, I'm entirely blind now. BRB guys, I'm riding to the sun!! Aside from my damaged vision, I was stoked to get some cool pics of me and my bike!

It was a great weekend and went by entirely too fast...
ALSO, don't forget... Today is your LAST DAY to enter the Stella + Dot giveaway. Enter HERE to win the cute bee brooch below!!

Saturday, May 19, 2012


Last weekend, I was with my [long-distance] boyfriend in Priest Lake, Idaho for a wedding. Since we only see each other about once a month, we don't have a lot of photos together. Sad story--- especially for a photo freak like myself. So, we had our friend Kyle [yes, of the jorts fame] snap a few nice pictures of us, and I am so in love with how they turned out:
When I asked Kyle to take the pics, I meant just maybe an awkward portrait next to the lake... nothing this magnificent. I am so grateful to have these... and even more grateful to be with the boy in the photos. He has the kindest heart I've ever encountered, and I know he has made me a better person in so many ways. I am sorry for [maybe] making you all nauseous with the sappiness... I just wanted to share a special part of my life, and I feel like maybe Saturdays are good for that. :)

I also want to take a brief second to sincerely thank everyone, from the bottom of my heart, for the support on yesterday's post. I was humbled by the feedback I got- on this blog, through text and email, and even phone calls from old friends. Thank you all SO MUCH for reading. You're the reason for L&L. Have a great weekend :)

Friday, May 18, 2012

Hot Hot Heat [plus some personal news...].

So, I'll start this post off with some news. I was initially wary to share it here, because... it will ultimately end in me showing more of myself in this arena than I'd planned. But, as I've stated a million times- I love to write far more than I love to accessorize. Writing is the one way I can say what I ACTUALLY mean [my verbal words get so jumbled]. 

Having explained all of that, I think [as my readers] that you likely would care to READ more than just my thoughts on sandals. If you aren't feeling it- by all means, skip to the photos below where I'll offer my usual musings on ways to aesthetically cover your body. BUT, if you're curious, here goes:

I am [officially] a contributor for The Conversation. You know, the Lifetime TV show from Demi Moore and Amanda de Cadenet? Each week, The Conversation offers real, honest talk. Real conversation. Real topics. You'll see the likes of Eva Longoria, Lady Gaga, Diane von Furstenberg, Jane Fonda, Melissa McCarthy.... the list goes on. And they are talking honestly about their lives- their ups and downs, their families & relationships, their careers, even on a level in regards to their self esteem. It is empowering, and sometimes- a shocking relief. To know that women we idolize have struggles and joys just like the rest of us. SO, Amanda & Company made a website to turn this conversation into a community.

And for some reason, I decided [and more importantly, was accepted] to write for them. You can read my author bio here, or skip straight to my first article. Why was I so nervous to share it here? Because, it is more personal than I'd ever get here. It is more personal than I may even get with friends. Many of you reading are people I've known my entire life. Many of you may just know who I am through friends of friends. We may be coworkers. You might be my family [hi Mom]. You could be someone who met me once at a wedding or concert and by default we are now Facebook friends and here you are, about to read some really personal stuff about my really personal life. But the thing is....

That is probably okay. The whole point of this blog is not to be the next fashion icon or shopping guru. It is to have an outlet for my writing, and this blog has offered me that opportunity on The Conversation community. AND, if my personal struggles [or joys] are shared on a much larger scale, I should be brave enough to share them here. SO, take a look if you so please. Phew.

Now that that is out of the way- onto the post I'd ORIGINALLY planned:

dress Target [similar] sandals Old Navy purse Coach necklace [gifted from Lindy] sunnies Target

SO, I don't know about your location--- but Boise has had a regular heat wave on our hands. Last weekend, it was in the 90s!! Holy smokes, that is hot. SO... I face the dilemma I encounter each and every summer... what do you wear when your face is melting off? My instinct says muumuu, my brain says pull it together. 

If you want to be stylish but remain cool as a cucumber... my answer is a sundress and a statement necklace. The dress is really just a thin piece of cloth that doesn't make me overheat. But the addition of the necklace turns the look into a full-on outfit. This overall idea is going to get me through the next few months [and dare I say, TRIPLE digit temperatures]. How do you feel about chunky jewelry in summer??

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Jorts: An Official Statement.

My long-time readers may be shocked today to see a pair of jorts front and center on my blog. Not just any jorts, no no. Men's jorts. I've spent most of my blogging existence disagreeing with men's jorts. In hindsight, I had no actual reason other than maybe that some guys wear jorts that are darn near capris and also have a utility loop for a hammer or something. I mean, THOSE are the denim devils that caused the curse of the jorts.

 That is until a beautiful Sunday morning in Priest Lake, ID... my friend Kyle strolled out of a cabin in
jorts + stripes. 

And he looked awesome.

I mean, I am not saying I'm some sort of turncoat who changes their mind weekly. I tend to make a clothing evaluation and hold on to it dearly until I die [case in point- HATS]. What I am saying here is that I finally saw a jorts-outfit worthy of my approval. SO, my official statement on the matter is that men are free to wear jorts all summer long. And if it is jorts + stripes, then by all means... go bananas. Because this is a great look for guys. Well done, Kyle. You took a pair of jorts and officially made me not just a jorts believer, but a supporter. Pretty groundbreaking.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

ILY Couture:

necklace: c/o ILY Couture, available with free shipping to L&L readers!! code: LLSHIP

 I wrote about my friend Christine's amazing bridal accessory line [ILY Couture] in this post way back in December.  In case you missed it, ILY Couture [ILY= I love you] is a line of unique, gorgeous wedding accessories that are showing up on blogs everywhere

Well, in addition to bridal accessories, ILY Couture is now carrying these GORGEOUS necklaces in all sorts of colors. They look similar to a much more expensive version you've surely seen... but are only 1/3 of the price @ $49!! Boom, that is a steal. AND, since ILY Couture is the best/my homegirl- readers of Leopard and Lavender get FREE SHIPPING when you use the code LLSHIP at checkout. 

I was so grateful to have received the black necklace c/o ILY Couture before I headed up North for a wedding. I wore it with the sweater above, AND paired it with a green maxi-dress for the ceremony. It was the perfect thing for BOTH outfits, casual OR fancy. I love it!! Thanks, ILY Couture :)

PS: Don't forget to enter my Stella & Dot giveaway for the adorable bee brooch [which, mind you, looks cute pinned to the statement necklace above. Just a thought]. You have less than a week to get your entries, in so check it out ASAP!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

[now closed] GIVEAWAY: Stella & Dot!!

This giveaway is now closed!!

You all know I’m pretty obsessed with little details. And I’m also pretty obsessed with accessorizing. But what about accessorizing WITH little details? In my opinion, brooches are the lost, unsung hero of any jewelry box. A brooch has unlimited possibilities- and won’t weigh down your wrist/neck/ears. It is small and cute and can up the ante on an entire outfit.

Right now, my favorite brooch is this little bee from Stella & Dot. It is hand painted and while it is small, it makes a big statement. My friend Karen with Stella & Dot [store|facebook] was SO kind to send it to me, and I had a blast styling it:

The exciting news is that YOU have a chance to win it!! That is right, L&L is giving one lucky reader their very own Bee Brooch- courtesy of Karen with Stella & Dot [store |facebook].

1. To enter, leave a comment with how you’d style the bee brooch. 

2. For extra entries (leave a separate comment for each for entry to be counted):

a) Follow Karen, Stella & Dot independent stylist on Facebook here.
b) Follow Leopard and Lavender with Google Friend Connect (click JOIN THIS SITE on the left sidebar).

That is correct- you have a possibility of THREE entries!

The rules:
International Shipping restrictions may apply.

Be sure to leave your email address with each comment entry so I can contact you if you win! [Please use the format of leopardandlavender (at) gmail (dot) com so that you don't get spammed].

The giveaway ends at midnight on May 22, and the winner will be announced the same day!

Good luck!! :)

Congratulations to Randi of a Modern Day Fairy Tale. You won! Please check your email so we can get you the bee brooch!! :)


The wedding I attended this weekend [photo above] was unbelievably gorgeous--- I can't wait to share even more photos from the weekend. It was a [very quick] 10 hour drive to get home, so I'm still not caught up on blogging OR life in general.  Whoops! Guess I needed a little time to recover, call it a momentary hiatus.

I DID want to let you all know to watch this space today... L&L is hosting an amazing GIVEAWAY that you don't want to miss! Yes, a chance for a prize! Hooray! 

I'll be back later today to tell you all the details. 

Friday, May 11, 2012

Tips from a Professional Wedding Guest [Lindy].

Hi everyone! This weekend, I am in beautiful Priest Lake, Idaho for a wedding. I don't know if you were aware, but my BFF Lindy is a professional wedding guest and/or participant [of the bridal party variation, not the everlasting commitment to love variation. Important difference]. Here are her tips for attending the most important day of other people's lives: 

Kelli and I often sit around and debate over our favorite season.  She loves Summer where I personally prefer Fall (what can I say, I love to layer).  But there is a “season” that we both happen to enjoy, and that is wedding season.  This ‘season’ (referenced in Wedding Crashers) is the time of year from mid-May through September where pretty much every weekend on my Choctaw Nation calendar is marked with someone’s big day.  Now, I am not sure what it is about me- but I get invited to a lot of weddings. And,not only am I invited to a lot of them- I am IN a lot of them.  In 2010 I was a bridesmaid 3 times in 6 it’s no Katherine Heigel  in 27 Dresses but it’s impressive.  Since Kelli is currently out of town attending a wedding, she has asked me, the ‘professional wedding guest,’ to share my wisdom which may help lockdown some future invites:

Dress.  Now there are many things to consider when attending a wedding (location, weather, what you wore to the previous week’s wedding) however you never know when a last minute invite is going to pop up.  I recommend a go to dress.  Mine is black and from Banana Republic similar to this. You get the idea.  Little black dress = always looking awesome and many chances to accessorize.
Shoes.  Ladies, let’s be honest- dancing in heels all night DOES NOT really happen in real life.  Be smart bring some flip flops.  Does it look awesome?  No.  But nothing is worse than being sidelined by your 4 inch stilettos.  

Placement.  There are many important moments at a wedding and they go in this order: when drinks are served, when food is served, when dancing begins, and the bouquet toss.  For the first three it is imperative to linger so that you are one of the firsts in line or first on the dance floor.  Now for the BT, this is the dreaded moment for any single girl.  Everytime I hear “Single Ladies” by Beyonce it literally makes me want to cut off my own ears.  However you have two options:  either run to the bathroom (and risk the DJ calling your name over the mic) OR embrace it, like so: 
Do your research.  I mean nothing is worse than looking like a wannabe bridesmaid by showing up in a frock the exact same color.  Rule of thumb, if the color is on the invite don’t wear it.
 Fancy footwork aka dancing. Dances to skip: anything by Cool and the Gang, Chicken Dance.
 Dances to never miss: The Cha Cha Slide (if you don’t know it, look it up) or the Cupid Shuffle.

Food. Always get seconds, always be sure to weasel your way in directly behind the bridal party.
Speeches.  Under no circumstances make a voluntary toast.  If you are required to toast, under no circumstances try to be funny.  It’s not worth the embarrassment of no one laughing. 

Gift. I always mail it directly, trying to wrestle your way to gift table in a crowded reception hall... STRESSFUL. 
Photos.  If you are a guest, try to get in as many photos as possible so the bride and groom remember how fun you are.  If you are a plus one, then by all means avoid the camera.  You never want to be mistaken for a wedding crasher.

Exiting.  Personally I never leave a party early, so just keep on dancing until the DJ kicks you out.