I’m Backkkkk!

Chicago

Hey everyone! Has it really been two and a half years since my last post?! It seems unreal to me that time can pass by so quickly; however, when I started to think about my life and what has happened since my absence from my blog began, it started to make sense how I’ve been so busy as to forget about time itself.

Let’s see…where to begin!

I moved to Chicago full time in the beginning of 2012 to start my job as a sales representative for various clothing lines. Basically, I work with different manufacturers from Europe, Canada, and the United States to sell their clothing collections to stores around the Midwest. I love my job! Not only do I get to work with clothing, fabulous business owners, and make my own schedule…but I am hands on with the trends 6 months in advanced while getting to travel and see interesting places I would miss out on being in a cubicle 9-5. I know it’s only the Midwest, but you guys!…did you know how many seriously cool cities we have outside of Chicago?!

Katherine_Barclay22153v2_cover

Katherine Barclay S/S 2015

As with any job, there are ups and there are downs. Having filled you in on a few of the “ups”, the downside is that I’m also away from home. A lot. And after so many nights, hotels start to lose their beauty and excitement they held when I was a child. Along with it taking me away from my bed, it has taken my free time as well. I have been focusing on my new venture and losing a sense of my hobbies, most importantly being my love for my blog and my readers!

Not only have I been busy in work but I’ve been busy in love as well! June of 2012, my best friend, Beth, asked me to attend a wedding with her as her date. She had plans of breaking it off with her then boyfriend and wanted a friend to go along with her. Since I love weddings (the dancing, drinks, food, all around happiness…need I say more?!) I decided to tag along with her. It was at the rehearsal dinner, I met Vili, the best man in the wedding and who was also from Finland, (as were half of the groomsman, seeing as the groom was from there as well). We hit it off that night and ended up spending the rest of the wedding together.

Not knowing what would happen (you know…with Vili living in Finland and myself in Chicago), we never let a day go by without talking. Eventually, after 6 months, I booked a trip to Finland for Christmas to see Vili and meet his friends and family. It was a hit! I loved everyone I met and fell in love with not only Vili but his hometown, Rovaniemi.

So, aside from working full time around the Midwest, I’ve been traveling back and forth from Chicago to Finland and am happy to say that after two years, Vili and I are engaged!!! He proposed this summer in Finland, atop a watchtower overlooking all of Rovaniemi with my great-great grandmother’s wedding ring. We are excitedly planning our future together and I can’t believe I have found such a loving man who is willing to move across the world for me!

Engagement

Vili and I enjoying the midnight sun after he proposed!

Now that I have filled you in on what I’ve been doing the past two and a half years, I’d like to get back to it (my blog that is)!  As everyone changes each year, I am no different and you might detect that in my upcoming posts. While I still live for fashion and love reporting what’s in and what’s out, I have a new found fondness for cooking, decorating, and all things that happen as you get older. I hope that you will enjoy my upcoming musings, whatever they may be, and continue to follow me throughout my upcoming adventures…stylishly of course!

Xx,

Nikki

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StyleMax: Fall Forecast

In these frigid days of blizzards, rapid winds, and negative temperatures, it can be difficult to imagine the upcoming warm, sunny days filled with beach outings, picnics, and outdoor concerts.  Beyond that, the fall season strikes again where we begin to gradually layer our clothing again and bundle up for the next few months, of what can feel at times, like hibernation.

From last week through the weekend, it was time for another StyleMax fashion market, held at the Merchandise Mart, in downtown Chicago.  I truly enjoy working these markets for numerous reasons, mainly because I get to preview what designer’s trends are to be for the upcoming seasons.  To give you a bit of background about what StyleMax is and what I do there, I will fill you in on the basics.  StyleMax is a women’s apparel and accessory tradeshow where designers and well-known brands showcase their latest and greatest collections.  Buyers from boutiques, spas, and larger stores from all around the world register to enter and walk around to their favorite exhibitors where representatives, like me, show them our latest collections.  Buyers then decide whether or not pieces from those collections will sell to their customer base in their stores and if it will coincide with other items already purchased from different exhibitors.  From the early start to the day to when the show floor closes down, it is a constant selling atmosphere and is difficult to view other designer’s collections and speak with them.  Therefore, I usually forego taking a long lunch and instead choose to walk the aisles of fashion and fun.

Burberry Prorsum Pre Fall 2011

Chloe Pre Fall 2011

This fall, the minimalism trend carries over.  Focus lies more on detailed stitching, cut, and the overall quality of the garment.  Be on the lookout for warm color tones such as heather beiges, browns, and grays.  Also, the line for jackets and sweaters becomes a bit hazy as the two create a hybrid leading to heavier sweaters that double as a coat if you were to go outside.  Think oversized, longer, cozier outerwear.  Details of large ribbing, cable knit, and tie-waists are visible along with the idea of “looking chic without trying” by adding some fur trimming to a number of its’ pieces giving off a sense of luxury.  As most exhibitors were not showing fall quite yet, still focused on spring and summer wear, one of the lines I represent is always ahead of the game and blows me away with the inventions and creations made with each fall collection.  This show, Katherine Barclay focused on asymmetrical cut sweaters, trapeze cut tops, and dresses that could be worn from day to night while allowing for comfort with its knit fabric.  Other labels are welcoming back the wide-leg trouser with easy going tops.  In terms of accessories – the more unique the better.  Accessories will be the way to make your statement in terms of dress this fall.  From chunky to ruffled, bubbled or absolutely absurd, you’re options are endless with these upcoming items!

Chanel Pre Fall 2011

Givenchy Pre Fall 2011

Vera Wang Pre Fall 2011

Even though days like this week make me never want to see a snowflake or put on a goose-down parka ever again, it is trends and collections like these that have me waiting in anticipation and excitement for my favorite stores to decide what to purchase and make available for me and other customers.  Until the next StyleMax fashion market where we will feature holiday 2011 looks, I will leave you with happy thoughts of intimate sweaters and novel accessories.