Infinity Sounds Good

I rarely regret letting go of a item from my closet. In fact, I’ve only beaten myself up about getting rid of two dresses. One beautiful Nicole Miller black and nude lace dress I had when I was 22 (that I could never wear again mind you) and this: the Tart Infinity Dress that I owned in a gorgeous teal green color. The Infinity Dress is a comfortable jersey knit dress that can be styled in (almost) infinite ways – or at least 8 according to Tart. It’s easy to pack, fun to wear, and if there is one thing I learned when dressing a pregnant belly, anything that wraps or drapes is very forgiving.

Here’s the deal killer: it’s normally $258 retail, and it’s on sale now at Gilt for $99. Don’t have an invite to join Voila. You ask and you receive. That’s how we roll at JHS.

Office Mommy, Play Mommy

Here are two very different looks crafted around the same necklace from the crazy popular J. Crew Fenton Fallon collection. Guess which one I wore to work?

Makeup Monday: It’s Getting Buggy Out There

I have been disappointed this summer in the heat and humidity that I thought I avoided by moving from East Texas to Eastern Iowa. And although we don’t get clouds of squeeters, we can get a fair amount of gnats and other nasties. Some swear by Absorbine, Jr., but I have always liked all natural, pure vanilla, except for the fact that you have to fly down to Mexico to re-bank your supply. So, I am thrilled that one of my favorite brands of baby products, California Baby, has released a natural citronella spray that seems to work just as well: California Baby Natural Bug Blend Bug Repellent Spray. The website explains that it is “non-toxic, DEET free, non-chemical, hypoallergenic formula repels fleas, mosquitoes, ticks and biting flies while it soothes existing bites with organic aloe vera, yucca, Irish moss and herbs that are specific to the healing of the skin. Citronella, lemongrass and cedar do not cause harm to humans, pets or the environment.”

I highly recommend getting several of the small travel size so you can stash in the baby bag, your golf bag, your bike bag.

The Cassie Boorn Project: A Letter to My 20 Something Self

I met Cassie on a flight from Atlanta to Memphis when both of our connecting flights in Atlanta went to hell. She was generous and inquisitive, a young mother with an old soul, student and social media genius (she taught me everything I know about blogging). She also happened to live 10 miles from me. Cassie Boorn made headlines recently in the New York Times Online for her asking women to write letters to their 20 Something Self and posting them on her blog. I am proud to call Cassie a mentee and a mentor, and I am grateful that I had a chance to share my letter on her blog. It’s up, so check it out.

Shopping in Suburbia: The Perfect Tunic

Okay, so I am not going to lie and say that checking out Madewell online came to me in a flash of brilliance. (I got the idea from this month’s In Style.) But when I saw a tunic from Madewell on Jessica Alba (page 24, Ladies), I knew I had to investigate. And it turns out, I love the line. And it is perfect for new mommy casual weekend wear. Add jeggings, and brightly colored flats (like the fabulous red patent Jimmy Choos I posted on Thursday!).

Friday Fashion Q&A: Taking a Great Photo

Dear JHS,

I am looking back at pictures when I was pregnant, and although I felt good, worked out, and only gained 28 pounds, the photos are awful! What went wrong?

Jenny H

Dear Jenny H,

You experienced the wonderful, mommy-to-be glow of water retention and weight gain meets inexperienced model. Here are some modeling tips that apply regardless of whether you find yourself either on the heavy side of normal or you are planning to work the Red Carpet:

1. Avoid the double chin by jutting your jaw slightly forward and tilt your head slightly down. And never, ever, ever have your picture taken by a camera that is shooting up at you. See offending picture #1.

2. Take a play from the Hollywood starlet and turn your body slightly away from the camera at an angle, one hand on your hip, and your forward foot relaxed but straight on to the camera. Never let the photographer shoot your body facing directly at the camera. See non-compliant photo #2.

3. If your arms are bare – and unless your name is Madonna – rotate your bent arm back and away from the camera, or if they are by your side, bend them slightly back and away from the body to avoid the conspicuous white arm bulge (CWAB). If things are really desperate (particularly the last 4-6 weeks of the pregnancy), carry a wrap with you and cover your arms altogether. See questionable photo #3.

4. As your belly expands, always cup your tummy with one or both hand, especially when wearing flow-y fabrics. And try to accomplish this while avoiding CWAB. See what not to do in photo #4.


Office Mommy… Then and Now

I was halfway through my pregnancy one year ago, and I had just come back home from a 30 day trial down in San Antonio. What a roller coaster it was! When it got to a pivotal point on the witness stand, I had to remind myself to stop holding my breath. Outside of work, I spent a lot of time with my Texas based family, shopped at some fabulous maternity stores, and I discovered that I can’t eat Mexican food twice a day every single day.

JHS Maternity Week has been a fun trip this week down memory lane, and I am sad it’s almost over. We’ll have to do this again soon.

Preggo Mama Needs a New Wardrobe! 10 Things the Working Woman Needs

1. Trench coat – this will get you through most of the chilly season without needing a wool coat, and if you get a swing style, you might be able to wear it post preggo
2. Jeans – you need to decide if you want the current popular “jeggings” style or the always flattering bootcut
3. Jacket – at least one blazer that will take you from boardroom to dinner
4. Cardigan* – something tailored you can wear on the weekend or to work
5. Black pants – preferably in a crepe fabric so they won’t need a lot of care, and bonus points if you get a little stretch in them
6. Knit top* – okay, you probably need a couple of these
7. Black skirt – this is easy to pull on and off, easy to mix and match
8. Leggings – you will live in these on the weekend
9. Dress* – choose a black wrap if you want the most bang for your buck, but you may want another in a fun print or stripe
10. Accessories* – if you keep your basic pieces neutral, here you can really shine by choosing things you love that you can keep post-baby

*These items don’t have to be maternity – in fact have fun by looking for non-maternity clothes that will work with your changing belly

Luxe Lashes without Latisse

The warning that Latisse can change my eye color is enough to stop me from getting a ‘scrip from my doctor even if Brooke Shields were in my living room knocking me down with her luscious lashes.

My preferred alternative is the lash extension. If you are within striking distance of Davenport, then call Five Star Salon Spa and ask for the “Jenny Hamilton Special”: A new, full set for $99 and one free fill (a $45 value). Book with Ashley, aka Lashley. She will take great care of you.

JHS Maternity Week – Win My Maternity Wardrobe!

I have been eBaying a client’s designer clothes and accessories all week, and it led me think about whether I need to put my maternity clothes up while I am at it.

Why not hold onto them? First, who knows if I get pregnant again and what season it will be. Second, if it is a few years down the road, who wants to wear outdated maternity wear? It’s tough enough working around a growing belly and seeing the fluid retention in the photographs (which, by the way, I am going to do all of you pregnant ladies a service and write a post this week about how to take good pictures when you are seriously preggo. This probably applies to you non-pregnant gals, so stay tuned.) I thought it would be more fun to give away my maternity wardrobe (well, 5-6 key pieces).

So if you know any deserving ladies who are with child, send them here this week, and you can enter the contest to win my maternity wardrobe as well and either keep, sell, or donate it to a lucky friend. All you have to do is to email me, leave a comment, tweet or facebook about the contest. (My handle is JennyLHamilton.) You get an entry for each of these you do up to a total of 3. If you want to make suggestions for a Friday Fashion Q&A while you’re at it, that would be fabulous. Winner will be chosen by