Best Luxe Looks: Valentino’s Mirabilia Romae Haute Couture Show

Originally posted on The Luxe Lookbook:
Celebrating the heritage city of Valentino, the design house showed it’s haute couture collection entitled “Mirabilia Romae” in the Piazza Mignanelli of Rome today. The collection was stunning – full of classic silhouettes, sweeping gowns with gladiator panels, intricate lace, and guilded details reminiscent of Ancient Romanesque haute fashion. Absolutely divine.

3 MORE Simple Ways to Make Your 4TH of July Celebration Out of This World

Okay, so if you read my last post but you’re still struggling in terms of decorations for this last minute shindig, I’ve got you covered. In this post I’m going to cover three MORE ways you can turn your last minute party planning into the celebration of your dreams; home decor style! Amaze your parents, in-laws and the general population with your mad skills, while keeping to an extremely small budget. Let’s get started. Round two!

1: Let’s start big and work our way down, shall we?

If you’re like anyone else in this country, you’re probably throwing your party in the backyard, or at least at your local public park. Besides the sweets, everyone knows decorations are what’s going to separate you from the rest and may just save you from the unyielding stink eye of your evil mother in law.

Things to try: Painting or sifting stars into the grass.

What you’ll need:

  • Cardboard
  • Box cutter or X-Acto knife (or a pair of scissors if you’re a klutz like me)
  • Flour or non-toxic spray paint
  • A wee bit of patience

Grab one of your old moving or grocery boxes, break out the box cutter or an x-acto knife and get to work. Cut out one or two different size five point stars (or six if you’re in the Halloween spirit already) and lay them at random points across the yard. Shop72 Cardboard and Box CutterNow, here’s where personal preference comes into play. You can either use cake flour and simply sift the stars into the cutouts but, this provides a bit of a mess to clean up later on because you’ll eventually have to sweep the flour up. (Or you can simply let it blow away, although I don’t know how your neighbors are going to feel about that.) Or you can go my personal favorite route and use non-toxic spray paint from your local hardware store. It’s a bit of a quicker job too, and you won’t have to worry about a mucky, flour-y mess if it decides to rain. Just make sure to remind the pets and the kids that eating spray painted grass isn’t a good idea. Once the stars are all painted (or sifted) into the grass, stand back and admire your Shop72.com spray painted yard stars.work. The best part about this decorating tip is, you can pretty much leave it there all season long, or at least until the yard needs another trim. Every day is a Shop72.com Kids love Painted Lawn Starswonderful time to be patriotic. And, not to mention, the kids will absolutely love the look and feel of their starry new backyard. Just remember, this decorating tip is best used on freshly cut or low cut grass so, break out the mower before you start painting. And, non-toxic paint is an absolute MUST if you plan on having the kiddies and the pets on the lawn while the stars are there. We wouldn’t want anyone having an allergic reaction or needing a trip to the vet or the emergency room. This holiday is already packed with ER visits!

2. Place settings, place settings, dear lord you have to sit next to your aunt Fran who drools, don’t you?

Okay, so the 4th of July is technically a family holiday, wouldn’t you agree? You grab all of your relatives and force them into the back of a van, travel down to your nearest river front or city monument and watch thousands of dollars worth of fire works literally go up into smoke. But, before that, you have to feed them! Kill two birds with one stone and make your place settings brighter with this little tip.

Things to try: Including boxes of sparklers with each set of silver wear at the table.

What you’ll need:

  • Paper plates or dining utensils of your choice
  • Silver or plasticware
  • Boxes of sparklers
  • Red, white and blue ribbons
  • Place mats of your choice

Grab your place mats and spread them evenly on your table. Make sure your table cloth and place mats coordinate. Grab something in the patriotic red, white and blue, Shop72.com Sparklers place settingand use your best plasticware if you’re not a fan of taking grandma’s fine China into the backyard. Then, simply apply a ribbon to your napkin, sparklers and utensils to add to the center of the plate. Add streamers to the places for an extra touch of festiveness. This simplistic idea will be great for yourShop72 sparklers 4th of July Belleville guests of any age. After they’ve finished dinner and they’re looking to have a little fun, just provide a lighter (to the adults) or hand out the matches to those old enough to operate them for a glittery good time. Just don’t forget to properly dispose of those little burnt ends so that the pets don’t get ahold of them. I can’t stress this enough!

3. Star spangled tea light candle holders!

After the fireworks display is over and you’ve shuffled the kids off to bed, it’s about time for the grown-up fun to begin. The 4th of July is a great occasion to get together with your special someone and cuddle underneath the moonlight. Break out the drinks of your choice and the finger-foods and kick back with your sweetheart, bathed in the glow of this next little tip.

Things to try: Tape a some cut out stars on an old mason jar and pop a tea light candle inside.

What you’ll need:

  • Mason jars (it’s okay if they don’t have lids
  • Masking tape (or star shaped stickers)
  • Scissors or X-Acto knife
  • Spray paint in your patriotic color of choice
  • Candles
  • Patience

Grab your masking or painters tape (or a kiddy star shaped sticker book if you’re particularly strapped for time) and carefully cut out a bunch of tiny star shapes. Or, if you’re feeling particularly flirty, cut out little hearts. Add them to your mason jars, cover the tops with the lids or a piece of cardboard, and hit them with a couple Shop72.com Star spangled tea light candle holdercoats of red, blue or even white spray paint. Try to keep it between three and four coats because you want the glow of the candle to illuminate the area. Let the jar dry between coats then, if you Shop72.com star spangled mason jar tea light candle holderscan, clean up any paint drips or streaking with a small paint brush. This step is optional and purely for the perfectionists out there. Once it’s completely dry, peel off the star shaped tape or stickers to reveal the perfectly star shaped empty spaces left behind. Pop a tea light candle inside and give it a light. Or, if you’re worried about the candle going out and having to relight it, pick up a pack of cheap, battery operated candles from the dollar store, turn them on and let them glow all night long. The ending result is more than worth it. For a stronger effect, make sure you place them away from brighter light sources such as porch or spot lights. If you go the battery operated fought, they make a great night light for the kids after the adults are done having all the fun with them. The great part about this little tip is that it’s a project that can be used again and again with different outcomes. Try hearts or little dinosaurs next time, or, use a sparkly glitter spray paint so it sparkles in the daylight, even when the candle’s not lit or turned on!

Don’t forget to show your patriotism by flying an authentic American Flag at your party! The American flag is the ultimate symbol of freedom and is a testament to all those we celebrate and remember on this day. Happy Independence Day from all of us here at Shop72.com!

Shop72 American Flag

Stop! Father’s day is just around the corner and you won’t believe some of these frugal tips!

Father’s day is fast approaching, in fact, it’s literally just around the corner. If you’re a last minute shopper like me, you’re probably still scrambling to find some way to make the day special for dad, and if you’re REALLY like me, you’re attempting to do it on a budget. Don’t panic, because I’ve discovered and collected lots of great ways to honor dad, without breaking the bank. Here are some frugal tips for surviving Fathers Day. You can do it

1: DIY baby!

We all know the old school “give dad a tie for father’s day and he’ll be more than happy”. But, in recent years and in light of new technology, dads are more inclined to want you to shell out the big bucks for some pricey new phone, computer or gadget.

I found one here on Shop72.com, super cheap and can't be beat!
I found one here on Shop72.com, super cheap and can’t be beat!

But where’s the fun in that? Where’s the personalization? If you’ve got little ones and a dad who’s in need of a personalized new tie, I have the perfect solution. Find a cheap tie online and grab the masking tape and markers. Your kids about to go to work.

Step One: Lay the tie out flat on some newspaper and a hard surface.

Step Two: Take your masking tape and tape off the tie in a fancy or even simplistic design.

Step Three: Hand out your non-toxic markers and let the kids get busy. They’ll scribble, draw, and go absolutely crazy.

Step Four: Remove the tape to reveal their beautiful, homemade design that Dad can wear for a lifetime.

Have a T-shirt you can spare to their creative destruction? Even better! Let the kids go wild and design something truly unique and one of a kind. Dad wT-shirt covered in masking tape. Credit goes to Smallfriendly.comill love it and you’ll enjoy the creative “mom time” you’ll have while they’re having fun.

2: Printables!

If you have a printer laying around the house, your life and Father’s Day just got a whole lot simpler. Take the time to download a few printables and print them out so you, dad and the kids can have a ball filling them out and showing them off. Take for example thisFathers-Day-Printable-shirt-tie Shop72.com “I love my dad because” print out I found over on BeautyandBedlam.com. Print these out and let the kids fill them out, then hand them into dad and make him feel extra special. After all, isn’t that what Father’s Day is all about? Making dad feel like the superhero he is? After he’s done reading them and shedding tears of joy and appreciation, hang them up on the fridge or even frame them so the little ones can one day look back on them and remember all the love they had for dad. Especially when they’re teenagers and can’t fathers-day-word-searchstand to be told no. Fun little activities like this one are one of the best ways to show your appreciation for dad without running the risk of breaking the bank. Expensive gifts are fun every now and again, but nothing beats something that’s homemade and from the heart.

Another cool printable idea is a dad word search. This fun little activity is something the entire family can take part in and you can even set up prizes for those who find the most words! Give dad a Mr. Goodbar for guessing words like BBQ, kisses and respect. Soon your household will be filled with giggles and frustrated grunts because they “swear thoughtful just isn’t on the board!” Have some fun with dad on Father’s Day to truly make it a day he won’t forget.

3: Just hang out!

Seriously, just hanging out with dad will be infinitely more valuable to him than some expensive pocket watch. The time you spend with dad now is time you’ll never get back. While the little ones are still well…little, and everything is peachy keen. And for all you supermoms out there doing this on your own, these tips are for you too. Gather up the kids, print out some fun crossword puzzles, turn on the TV and just enjoy your time together. Being a parent will be the highlight of your life. And there will come a day when your babies look back on this special day you spend with them, and want to do it all again with their own children. Start a tradition this year with Father’s Day. dad-kids-on-couch