Month: May 2014


What I Wore: Mother’s Day/Family Gathering, pt. 2

Rachel Roy floral chambray dress
Dress, RACHEL Rachel Roy (via consignment); cardigan, J. Crew (via eBay); shoes, Zara; clutch, Rebecca Minkoff

This is the outfit version of “A Few of My Favourite Things”. Instead of kittens and whatever, we have my holy grail dress, my new sparkly Tinkerbell flats, and a cheapo Old Navy ring I bought last week because I have no self-control. But, look, it’s really cute:

Weird upside down angle, because.
Old Navy ring

And it is already turning black as we speak, which makes me sad. I think I want a more, um, durable version of this ring, but my Google-fu isn’t working. Help a blogger out? Find me a less tarnish-prone ring like this, and you will get … my eternal gratitude. Sorry, I’m terrible at incentivizing – which probably explains why I can never seem to get my kid to eat his vegetables.

Another thing I can’t seem to do? The ironing, apparently. Obviously, it’s not so much that I physically can’t. It’s just that … well, when you’re trying to wrangle two kids into their “Sunday best” and out of the door within a 2 hour span, certain things fall by the wayside. Ironing is a distant fifth on the list of things I won’t get a chance to do before we leave the house. Sorry, folks!

But, hey, how about another look at my wrinkly dress! Double down or nothing.

Rachel Roy floral chambray dress
The sun, it burrrrnsssss!!

A Quick Word on Affiliate Links

[I went back and forth on whether to post this because, on one hand, it’s not really necessary; on the other hand, the topic has been on my mind lately, while on the third hand, I didn’t want the whole thing to come out as a critique of affiliate links or the people who use them. This was mostly an exercise in thinking out and articulating my own stance/parameters on the issue. With that in mind, feel free to skip, or read, at your discretion.]

A brief summary for newer readers: BCRL is not a monetized blog. Part of it is attributable to my failings as a blogger. (When you have all of 8 readers, monetizing is a little, um, de trop.) Truthfully, for the longest time, that was the whole of it. Lately, though, it’s become something of a principle thing. Given the ways in which BCRL has evolved over the last 4 years, keeping it un-monetized seems like the right thing to do. I’ll explain.

The bread and butter of blog-derived income comes from two main sources: (1) sponsored posts and sponsorships; and (2) affiliate links. The former involve a company paying the blogger to either write a post about one of its products, or to run the company’s ad on the blog. The latter are embedded links that take you, the reader, to various retailers’ product pages; when you click on one of these links and/or buy the product featured on the linked page (or, potentially, any other product from that retailer), the blogger earns a commission.

Let me pause here to say that, as a blog reader, I don’t take issue with bloggers making money this way. I dislike certain practices that have developed around affiliate links, but I do not see the whole system as an inherently evil thing. Again as a reader, I appreciate the inspiration and/or entertainment I get from the (otherwise free) content put out by bloggers. I don’t begrudge anyone the opportunity to hustle. Like I said, I certainly wouldn’t mind a piece of the hustle action if the opportunity presented itself.

As long as it didn’t make me feel like a big ole hypocrite. And that’s the part where I get stuck.

Integrity might sound like a mighty big word to associate with something as frivolous as a style blog, but here’s the thing. My blog means a lot to me, minuscule and unimportant as it is. It reflects a part of who I am, and it’s a part that doesn’t have a lot of other outlets. You, my teeny, tiny awesome audience, mean a lot to me too. And, for better or worse, affiliate links and sponsorships just don’t fit the philosophy behind BCRL.

Ooof, another big, pretentious word. Let me put it this way: BCRL is the style blog of an inveterate bargain shopper. It might not always seem that way; I spend ungodly amounts of money on my wardrobe, and I buy plenty of designer pieces, both of which might seem like the antithesis of a thrifty shopper. But. The vast majority of things I buy are either second-hand, or deeply discounted. I kinda pride myself on that. Getting the best quality for the lowest possible price is my thing. It’s what I’m really good at, fashion-wise. (Yes, possibly the only thing – bada boom, the jokes write themselves.) Sadly, I just can’t square that approach with the whole affiliate linkage business.

Most of the things you see here are from past seasons, and can’t really be monetized. (I could try linking to similar items, but I’m lazy.)

Or they are things I’m ogling online but would never buy at the listed retail price. I can’t and don’t expect you to either.

Or they are things from Old Navy. (And, let’s face it, no one gets rich from those affiliate links. Or maybe they do. I don’t know. Did I mention that I’m lazy?)

I suppose J. Crew could decide one day to start sending me freebies in exchange for glowing reviews. (Or Ferragamo. Or DVF. Or, be still my heart, the Marc Jacobs handbag division.) I mean, it’s possible in the same hypothetical way that pigs might fly one day. And if that day comes, I am selling my integrity and you lot down the river, no questions asked. Because I really, really, reeeeeally like that ish. You have been warned. But in the meantime, rest assured that this blog will remain 100% affiliate link/sponsorship-free. If I say that I like something, that something has been bought by me with my own cold hard cash (full disclosure: or, possibly, my husband’s). If I include a link anywhere in a post, that link is either (a) to a direct product page, or (b) another blog or news article. So, click away, my friends. It’s probably a picture of a cute kitten. Or Kit Harington shirtless.

Tl;dr – BCRL is not currently monetized, and that will probably not change. Blah, blah, Adina’s feelings, cute kittens. And this:

Photo credit: Vanity Fair
Photo credit: Vanity Fair

Yeah, I said “shirtless”. I lied. I’m evil like that.


Floral Pants, Redux

What I Wore: Shopping en famille

Anthropologie floral pants
Pants, Anthropologie; sweater, J. Crew Factory; jacket, LOFT (via consignment); shoes, Tory Burch (via consignment); bag, MbMJ (via consignment)

Look, I know. These pants? Not the most flattering option in my closet. I know that, and I’m forcibly reminded of it every time I look at a picture of myself wearing them. And yet … I can’t stop. In my head, I’m 26 with pre-baby hips, and I look effortless and cool in a not-annoyingly-hipster way, and … yeah, magical thinking doesn’t work and here we are. But I know what the answer is!

Stop taking pictures when wearing these pants.

Hah! Were you expecting a different answer?

Anywhoodle, this is a pretty basic outfit, and I realize now that it probably could use a necklace or something, but I wore this to go to the mall with the fam, and a necklace would be too wearing-it-for-the-sake-of-blog-photos. Know what I mean? The only reason you’re seeing this outfit, really, is because I was having a Good Hair Day. A Good Hair Day makes almost everything better, especially when you’re no longer 26 with pre-baby hips. It even makes the skies part and the sun shine. Just kidding. Good Hair is magical but not, like, weather-changing magical. I wish.

Still, never ever underestimate the power of Good Hair.

Anthropologie floral jeans Pilcro
NOT a Good Hair Day. Also, snow. Snow on May 4.

Good Hair can save a so-so outfit; its absence positively dooms many a cute outfit – the above is but one example. (Also, note to self: blush and concealer. Never forget the blush and concealer. Because, yikes!)