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October 21, 2014

AllyCog on Instagram

Happy Tuesday, babes! So many exciting things happening, the first of which you may have already noticed -- the site has gotten a complete makeover! Eeee! It's been a long time coming and I can't thank the insanely talented Jessica of Creative Index enough for all her incredible hard work. If you ever need any design services, she's your girl!

The biggest change is the name. You already know me on Instagram and Twitter as AllyCog, so going forward forward, the blog will have the same namesake. Chain Strap Purse was what I came up with when I first started blogging. It was meant to evoke images of Chanel handbags, which I consider one of the most iconic pieces in fashion. It's classic, timeless and transitions seamlessly from season to season -- mixing with trendy pieces but always able to stand on its own. I wanted my blog to be a reflection of that...and I loved it at the time. But just as my style and tastes have changed, so has this site. The new (okay, not really new haha) name is AllyCog because that's the brand I've built over the years. It's 110 percent me. But not to worry -- the content won't change! And I promise to make those boring technical changes as seamless as possible so you don't have to switch your RSS feeds or any of that good stuff. There will undoubtedly be some kinks to work out and a few things to update here and there, so please bear with me over the next few days as I get it together! And, as always, thank you, thank you, thank you for reading!

Now, onto a peek into my life lately...

1. Told ya I've been living in dark manis! You can get the sweater here and the ring here.
2. I wear faux leather leggings at least once a week once it gets cooler out. This season, I have my eye on a paneled pair.
3. I've walked past this restaurant in DC dozens of times, but something made it stand out to me recently. Maybe it was the dreary day, but I suddenly felt like I was strolling around Paris!
4. A cozy sweater, oversized plaid scarf and my favorite sunglasses = my weekend uniform. And you know I can't get enough of these jeans!

5. Fall weekends are my favorite. I love relaxing with a cup of coffee and just hanging out with our little Sofia!
6. Hunter Boots and slouchy plaid shirts are my rainy day must-haves!
7. I recently tried this dry shampoo and am in love! It seriously works wonders on second (and sometimes even third -- eek!) day hair.
8. If there's one thing I can never have enough of, it's things to help me organize my life. This blog planner from Heart & Arrow is exactly the way I like to see my week laid out and is so, so helpful for getting organized!

Hope you're all having a great week so far! And please let me know what you think about the new look/name! I'd love your feedback :)


October 17, 2014

Fall 2014 nail polish trends

I may live in Essie's "Blanc" -- my favorite white nail polish -- all summer long, but once September 1 arrives, it's back to dark manicures for this girl. Each fall I look forward to gettin' ma nails did (read: I mostly do them myself) with new moody hues and this season I'm particularly giddy with some of the colors I've seen. And since it's Friday and we all know you have a date with a glass of wine and your DVR at some point this weekend, I figured I'd help you out in case you wanted to pick up a new nail polish to try while you catch up on Scandal:

Fall 2014 Nail Polish Colors

Blues -- It used to be that my go-to dark color was good old basic black. But lately, I find myself swiping on a deep blue instead. I recently picked up this one, and every time it starts chipping, I end up taking it off only to reapply. But really, anything from a cobalt to next-to-black is A-ok in my book.

Berries -- From rich reds to deep purples, you can't go wrong with anything in a berry hue. I tend to stick to the darker shades, but you can also incorporate some bright colors if you're feeling festive. Especially since we're heading into the holiday season!

Greens -- If you told me a few years ago that I'd be wearing variations of green nail polish, I would've called you cray. But after obsessing over "Stylenomics" late last season, I'm much more into the idea of having pretty, woodsy colors on my nails. Similar to my love for dark blues, a good dark teal or olive is a great way to take a break from your classic noir.

Nudes/Neutrals -- Okay, so nudes aren't exactly dark, but there's no denying that anything flesh-toned is trending for fall 2014 (and even into spring 2015). But I'm not talking about sheer nudes. I'm talking about the really opaque, milky colors. You can even go a little darker and venture into chocolatey-brown territory. And maybe, just maybe, I'd even be willing to add some greige to this category ;)

Have a fab weekend, babes!


October 15, 2014

H&M outerwear








Coat:H&M || Faux leather leggings: Identical here || Heels: Very similar || Purse: Target || Scarf:H&M

I find myself in H&M more often than I'd prefer to admit. Especially since they opened a shiny new store about two blocks from my office. I have my lunchtime retail therapy sessions down to an art, complete with grabbing a giant smoothie so I can eat while I shop as to not waste any valuable time actually sitting down to consume food. Savvy or sad? You be the judge.

Anyway, I am beyond giddy to talk about their outerwear collection today. Because when I'm not in denial about the imminent arrival of winter, I'm shopping for coats (that's how I cope). And this season, they have some of the best pieces I've seen yet.

I snagged this black long-line coat because it's truly a classic. First, I love the leather details. I think it gives it that slight edge, which you know I'm all about. In terms of weight, it's definitely light enough to wear now over thin layers but will be perfect for when it's time to really bundle up. My favorite feature is the oversized collar, which I plan on hiding behind when the winter winds kick up. Oh, aaaand it's only $50. Not kidding.

They have so many other good options, too. I'm also tempted by this patterned cape, this asymmetric bouclé moto jacket and -- if you're looking to spice up your winter wardrobe -- this faux fur goodness! So what are you waiting for? Get yourself to a store ASAP!


Thanks to H&M for sponsoring this post! Even though I did receive compensation, all opinions are 100% my own.
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