TOTSPOTLIGHT

TOTSPOT is the resale shopping app for families. Sell and shop style for kids, women & men. Earn cash, make friends!

Stylish Working Mamas Who Inspire

by juliannecronin

The following is a guest post by Julianne Cronin of The Wink.

This post is dedicated to all the hard-working mothers out there who can wrangle her little ones and still manage to find the time to look effortlessly pulled together – you are an inspiration to us! Everyone knows that being a mother is a full-time job, so the fact that many mamas also work 40+ hour jobs AND put together thoughtful outfits is mind-boggling.

Let’s take a moment to give a shoutout to these women, and all other inspiring working mothers out there. She is a conscious working mama, unapologetically present in the wholeness of who she is. She experiences life more engaged, balancing her career and motherhood, and maintains her authentic self-identity at all times – maybe even with a swipe of lipstick!

Joy Cho of Oh Joy!

Joy Cho is the founder and creative director of Oh Joy, a lifestyle brand and blog that has partnered with hundreds of creative businesses around the world. Joy’s style is fun, whimsical, and colorful, and she often wears coordinating outfits with her daughters Ruby and Coco. Check out her latest blog post on being mindful, filled with great tips on managing emotions, calming your mind and giving yourself a break.

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Naomi Davis of Love Taza

One of the most influential “mommy bloggers,” Naomi has built her blog into a business and has become a truly savvy businesswoman. Her style is feminine, colorful, with a hint of retro thrown in for good measure. She and her husband, Josh, run Love Taza together while raising their three little ones, Eleanor, Samson, and Conrad.

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Christine Bronstein of A Band of Women

Christine Bronstein is the founder of A Band of Women, a style blogger at 39nineteen, an essayist, editor and publisher for Nothing But The Truth, and vibrant entrepreneur. Her work has appeared in The San Francisco Chronicle and on The Huffington Post, Forbes.com, and Maria Shriver’s website. Her style is eclectic and edgy. She and her husband, Phil, have three children and live in San Francisco.

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Emily Schuman of Cupcakes & Cashmere

Before Gwyneth’s Goop or Blake’s Preserve, there was Emily’s Cupcakes and Cashmere: a style, beauty, and lifestyle blog devoted to a curated sense of aesthetics. Since then, Emily has turned her blog into an empire, developed a clothing line and written two books. Most recently, she has become a mother to an adorable baby girl named Sloan. Emily’s style is feminine + luxe – mixed with Cali girl casual.

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Ali Larter, Actress

New mother of two little ones, Ali is famous for her roles in Legally Blonde (Brooke’s Butt Buster!) and Heroes. Not only is she a busy actress, she is working on writing her first cookbook – a woman of many talents! She and her husband, Hayes, are raising their son + daughter together in Los Angeles. Ali’s style is effortlessly casual + chic.

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Here’s to you, stylish working mamas! You’re an inspiration to all of us!

Workweek Trends That Are Office Appropriate

by juliannecronin

The following is a guest post by Julianne Cronin of The Wink.

As someone who loves taking risks with my own personal style, working in a corporate office environment is tough. Ideally, I’d like to be able to express myself through my clothing without a weekly trip down to HR. I’ve definitely made my fair share of office fashion faux pas in the past, but I think I’ve finally struck a balance of appropriate and stylish. Read on for my five no-fail, modern, office-appropriate pieces!

The Textured Shift Dress

I wore this one to work today! Style it with a pair of opaque black tights and heeled Chelsea boots for a fun nod to the Sixties. Shift dresses can err on the short side, so make sure to get one that at least reaches your fingertips so you don’t accidentally flash your coworkers while fixing the paper jam at the copier.

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The Turtleneck + Trouser

The turtleneck-and-trouser combo is one of my favorites to wear to the office. Find a thin turtleneck in a dark color and tuck it into a pair of slim trousers for a sleek and streamlined office-appropriate outfit. Alternatively, you could tuck the turtleneck into a pair of wide-legged trousers for a different look. Basically, the turtleneck is the anchor of the outfit – tuck it into pretty much anything and you’re golden.

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The Patent Loafer

Pick up a pair of shiny black patent loafers and they’ll quickly become your favorite work shoes. In fact, I wear mine so often I just keep them under my desk to slip on if my feet get tired of my pumps. They look so retro chic paired with a pair of cropped trousers. Oh hey, little Audrey Hepburn! 😉

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The Structured Peplum

Peplums can walk the line of looking too fashion-forward for the office, but pick one up in a solid neutral and structured material and prepare to rake in the compliments. If you’re conscious about wearing a sleeveless top at the office, make sure you get one with sleeves – this type of top is the shining star of the outfit and doesn’t work underneath a cardigan.

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The Velvet Blazer

Skip those frumpy polyester blazers and rock one in a rich velvet. The velvet blazer adds depth and a hint of luxe while still looking professional and polished. Velvet blazers look best in jewel tones, like dark green, burgundy, or navy. Just make sure to keep the lint roller close by – these bad boys attract fuzzies like no one’s business!

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Dressing for the office doesn’t have to be a chore. Don’t fall prey to frumpy office clothes and pick up these super stylish and office-appropriate duds!

What are some of your go-to outfits for the office?

10 Life-Changing Hacks for Fixing Ruined Clothes

by juliannecronin

The following is a guest post by Julianne Cronin of The Wink.

It happens to the best of us. One minute you’re laughing it up at dinner, the next minute you’ve splashed red wine down the front of your favorite dress. Insert crying emoji and several thousand curse words.

However:

Don’t give up on your favorite pieces quite yet. Try these easy tricks for salvaging those damaged garments you just can’t seem to part with!

Hack #1: Use a banana peel to shine leather.

As it turns out, you don’t need expensive shoe polish to make your shoes glisten and gleam. If your best pumps are looking a little worse for wear, use the inside of a banana peel to shine them up.

slippery banana skin on a white background

Hack #2: Remove oil stains with chalk.

Clay and chalk absorb oil! It’s the same idea behind dry shampoo. Alternatively, if you don’t have chalk handy, you could spray a tiny bit of dry shampoo onto the grease stain.

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Hack #3: Freeze your jeans.

If your perfectly worn and broken-in jeans are emitting a questionable odor, try freezing them! Fold them and place in a large plastic bag and freeze overnight. The freezer will kill most odor-causing bacteria and prevent your jeans from getting faded and worn from over-washing.

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Hack #4: Remove deodorant marks with a piece of foam.

Scrub the white marks out with a piece of dry foam (like the kind on dry cleaning hangers). Alternatively, a pair of pantyhose will work in a pinch. Also: prevent this from happening on the reg by applying your deodorant after you get dressed. 🙂

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Hack #5: Use clear nail polish to stop pantyhose runs + button threads.

By now, everyone knows that to stop a pantyhose run, you should dab a bit of clear nail polish on both ends. But did you know that you can also use clear nail polish on loose button threads to prevent them from unraveling further? New life hack!

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Hack #6: Shine patent leather with Windex.

It’s just as easy as it sounds: shine up your patent leather bags and shoes with a bit of Windex on a paper towel. It restores the glossy sheen without doing any damage to the material.

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Hack #7: Fix an underwire bra with a moleskin patch.

Typically sold as a shoe insert, moleskin actually has a variety of uses. Fix an underwire that’s poking through with a patch and salvage your favorite bra!

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Hack #8: Fix a stuck zipper with Vaseline.

Sometimes all it takes to free the zipper is a little lubrication. Using a q-tip, dab a bit of Vaseline on the stuck zipper and it should free up in no time!

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Hack #9: Shave the pills off of your sweater.

Back in the day, they used to sell sweater shavers (my mom totally had one!). Save yourself some money and just use a regular old razor or blade to carefully shave the pills off your favorite sweaters. Then, use a lint roller to take off the pilling. So easy (and addicting…)!

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Hack #10: The secret formula to remove the toughest stains is…

Using a mixture of 2 parts hydrogen peroxide, 1 part Dawn dishwashing liquid, and 1 part baking soda will remove even stains that have set for over a year. Use a brush to scrub the mixture into the stain and let it soak for 1 hour. Wash the garment regularly and the stain will be gone! We guarantee it.

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Conclusion:

Sometimes, your best clothing just needs a little TLC to get it back to looking brand new. Don’t give up on them until you’ve tried these ten tips!

What are some of your best hacks for fixing ruined clothing?

Dashing Through the Snow: Winter’s Must-Have Menswear Styles

by juliannecronin

The following is a guest post by Julianne Cronin of The Wink.

Attention men! If your wife has left this article open on her computer, it’s because she is trying to give you a hint. Believe me, she is just as tired of seeing those grungy jeans as you are of wearing them. It’s time to hit the refresh button on your wardrobe – keep reading for winter’s must-have menswear styles!

The Fisherman’s Sweater

Ditch your ratty college sweatshirt and upgrade to a cozy Fisherman’s sweater in an interesting weave. Marled knits and thick cables are in right now and so hot for winter (see what I did there?). Layered over a collared shirt, they provide the right amount of warmth and make you look like you put in a modicum of effort.

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The Tailored Overcoat

A crisp, tailored overcoat is miles better than your ten-year-old parka. It should be a simple, straight-cut coat with no belts or extra buttons. When in doubt, watch the show Luther and try not to covet Idris Elba’s iconic tailored overcoat.

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The Dark Denim

Regardless of your gender, sleek, dark denim looks good on literally everyone. Admittedly, it can be hard to find the perfect pair, but make sure to look for some that are slightly fitted. Stay away from distressed or whiskered denim, which can make you look dated.

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The Plaid Flannel

This winter, it’s okay to embrace your inner Paul Bunyon and rock the plaid flannel shirt. In fact, go ahead and layer it underneath your Fisherman’s sweater and feel like a boss. Bonus: it’s basically like wearing your pajamas to work (we won’t tell).

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The Leather Boots

There is absolutely no excuse for wearing your sneakers in the snow this winter. Keep those dogs toasty and dry by upgrading to a pair of quality, leather boots. Investing in a pair will keep your feet warm for many more winters to come.

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The Wood Watch

This may seem a bit perplexing at first, but hear me out: wooden watches are so amazingly cool. Pick one up in a dark wood and be prepared for it to become a conversation piece. It brings a whole new meaning to, “do you have the time?”.

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What menswear styles are you excited to wear this winter?

New Year’s Style Resolutions

by juliannecronin

The following is a guest post by Julianne Cronin of The Wink.

Happy New Year! How did 2016 sneak up on us so fast? A brand new year means brand new resolutions. Getting into style ruts happen to the best of us, so make reinvigorating your closet this year one of your 2016 resolutions!

Purge ill-fitting, damaged or worn out clothing. Take some time this month to clean out any clothing that doesn’t belong in your wardrobe. Maybe the shirt has a stain that you could never quite remove. Maybe that pair of boots always pinched your toes a little too much. Maybe those black trousers have been for one too many spins in the washing machine. Whatever the reason may be, getting rid of unwanted items in your closet will visually reduce clutter and make room for new items you love! Refer to our guide on how to clean out your closet and declutter with the KonMari Method for tips on how to get started.

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The foundation for a great wardrobe starts with well-fitting undergarments. If you stop and think about it, our underwear drawer gets the most use and yet we give it the least love of any of our clothing. After countless cycles in the washer and dryer, even our best undergarments get stretched out, faded, and quite frankly unsupportive. Elevate your style this year by investing in high-quality undergarments and vow to take better care of them. As a tip, bras should never (ever! We meant it!) be dried in the dryer. Throwing bras in the dryer causes the elastic to degrade, the cups to get warped, and a host of other sins. Additionally, be sure to dry them by hanging by the gusset instead of the straps so the straps don’t stretch out. Wash them on the delicate cycle and dry them by hanging them by the gusset on a hanger.

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Try to stay clear of fast fashion trends. Sure, everyone and their mom seemed to be rocking cropped flares last year, but this year you should try to rein in the over-the-top trendy purchases. Save your money for high-quality pieces like a classic leather jacket (in brown or black), a pair of slim, dark denim, and a beautiful, classic handbag that you can carry well into the coming years. Have no fear, once you have upgraded your closet with classic pieces, you’ll never feel like you have nothing to wear!

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Upgrade your basics. Favorite white tee shirt looking a little more like your favorite gray tee shirt? Even your favorite basic pieces have a lifespan. From turtlenecks to tanks, and everything in between, freshen up your wardrobe by upgrading your most-loved basics. Your outfits will instantly look more polished and put-together.

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Step out of your comfort zone. This year, we challenge you to try one piece that is out of your comfort zone. If you’ve always been intrigued by jumpsuits, curious about culottes or dying to rock a strappy heel, there’s no time like the present! Who knows, maybe you’ll discover your new favorite thing! P.S. Mine was jumpsuits – I have three now! 😉

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What are some of your style resolutions for 2016?

Jaw Dropping Family NYE Outfits Under $50

by Shari Wargo Stamps

Collage of outfits for the whole family Left to right: Suit, V-neck dress, boy's suit and girl's dressFinding a sitter for New Year’s Eve is beyond difficult, not to mention getting tickets in time for your favorite shin dig by the time you get one. So a lot of families opt for a casual NYE at home in their PJs, or go to a friend’s house for a festive family NYE celebration. Whichever you choose, why not dress up and make it fun? Here are just a few jaw dropping family NYE outfits to choose from, all under $50!

Classic Suit Jacket

Since this is a casual semi-formal family NYE, the jacket is everything. Set things up with something like this Stafford Travel Stone Suit Jacket (Sale, $49). Simply add your favorite matching tie to a nice dress shirt and pair with jeans or neutral slacks.

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Flirty Party Dress

A fun party dress isn’t overly dressy, but still makes you feel like you’re at a special occasion. Add a stretch top, scoop neck or V-neck line and it’s super breastfeeding friendly to boot! This $30 V Neck Lace Insert Open Back Pleated Dress is bright and screams “clean slate” for the New Year.

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Mini Suit Set

How adorable would your little one look in this G-Cutee Toddler Boys’ 3-Piece Gingham Set?! The little bow tie really sets it apart, but if your kiddo isn’t a fan, it can go without. At $17 (Clearance), it’s a steal!

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Little Party Dress

The little miss in the family should be able to dress up with mom, and this fairytale-like Popatu Sequin Bodice Dress for toddlers and girls is the perfect compliment tom mom’s fun party dress. Pink and gold are fantastic NYE party colors, and the flowing length is perfect for a special occasion. Personally, I’m in love with these sleeves!

toddler fashion

Adore the outfits shown above? Don’t forget to accessorize! Check out your Totspot app for the perfect finishing touches to your look! If you’re still looking for more options, Totspot has you covered there, too. Simply use the Search tool to find your new duds.

Happy New Year!

Shari Wargo Stamps is a California-based freelance content creator, event planner/consultant and the creator of savvyeveryday.com, the lifestyle site for parents. She enjoys binge watching TV shows and films, sitting on the beach, decorating, and planning events. Connect with her on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Periscope!

Last-Minute Gift Guide For the Whole Fam

by juliannecronin

The following is a guest post by Julianne Cronin of The Wink.

Some people do all their Christmas shopping the day after Thanksgiving, providing them plenty of time to find and order the perfect gifts online. I try to do this, but every year there’s always a few people that I’m struggling to buy for in time for the holiday. Finding thoughtful gifts last-minute is always a challenge, but now you can sail into Christmas with careless abandon with this last-minute gift guide for the whole fam!

Apple TV

Apple has had a TV box for years, but this fall they released an updated version that is far superior to what it was before (and anything available, for that matter). The new touch panel remote is easy and intuitive to use, and the device is able to search for movies and TV shows across many different services including iTunes, Netflix, and Hulu. The best part is that you can snag one in any Best Buy or Apple Store – you can even order it online from Apple.com and have it delivered before Christmas day. Set it up on Christmas and watch all your favorite Christmas movies in one place (did I say Christmas enough? Christmas.)

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The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo

As previously mentioned in this post, the KonMari Method will actually change your life. Pick up The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo for anyone in your life, because we all could use a little help and guidance in the tidying department.

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Buckwheat pillows

Buckwheat pillows are an unusual but surprisingly pleasant gift. Instead of being filled with cotton, they are filled with organic buckwheat hulls. They offer breathable, cool comfort and can often be adjusted to your shape and thickness preferences.

hullo-buckwheat-pillow

R2D2 shower head

Hot on the heels of the new Star Wars movie release, this adorable R2D2 shower head will put a smile on your face every time you step into the shower. Perfect for either the kids’ bathroom or your own (no judgment!).

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Clothing steamer

It’s hard to put into words how obsessed I am with my steamer. I sound insane, but it’s seriously the best. Ironing is the worst… why iron when you can steam? Every household should have a clothing steamer – they’re the most underrated appliance ever and make a great and practical gift.

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Cheero battery pack

The low battery life struggle is real… I plug my phone in so much that I basically have a landline again. However, when you’re on the go, finding a place to charge your phone is such a pain. Keep that iPhone/iPad battery topped off with the Cheero battery pack – perfect for all your spontaneous family adventures!

danboard-cheero-power-plus-mobile-battery-2

Matching Christmas pajamas

So cute and so corny, but get matching Christmas pajamas for the whole family. You and your kids will treasure those photos for years to come – and hey, maybe that picture will be a #TBT 15 years from now!

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Blue Apron

For the gift that keeps on giving, try a Blue Apron subscription! Blue Apron will send you all the ingredients to prepare three delicious, healthy meals a week. The ingredients are seasonal and fresh, and the recipes are inventive and creative.

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Happy last-minute shopping!

Clean Out Your Closet with the KonMari Method + Totspot!

by juliannecronin

The following is a guest post by Julianne Cronin of The Wink.

Do you ever feel like your closet is full yet you have nothing to wear? Before discovering the KonMari Method, I would spend longer than I’d like to admit searching in my closet for the perfect thing to wear, only to come up empty-handed. It was frustrating and time-consuming, and getting dressed in the morning was such a chore!

If you’re anything like I was, don’t wait around for this to miraculously change. Charge ahead full steam this winter and declutter your closet with the KonMari Method. In simple terms, eliminate everything in your life that doesn’t spark joy. This method is all about living in the present and purging baggage, and there’s no better time to start than now – it will seriously change your life! New Year’s resolution, anyone?

Step One

Start by pulling everything out of your closet, dresser, and hamper. Yup, every.single.thing. Make sure you find every last article of clothing – anything that you find after you start this process must be purged. Pile everything on your bed. It’s okay to feel overwhelmed – right about now you might be realizing just how much clothing you own! It is important to amass everything into one pile because an integral part of this method is touching and handling each piece to decide whether it sparks joy in your life.

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Step Two

Now it’s time to start deciding what in your wardrobe sparks joy. Start with tops – this includes blouses, sweaters, sweatshirts, tank tops, and crop tops. Pick up each item and hold it in your hand. Does this item spark joy? Maybe it used to but it’s looking a little worn out. Maybe it’s something that never quite fit right, but you held onto it thinking one day it would. Whatever the reason, if the piece doesn’t spark joy, place it in the discard pile. This process may be a little challenging at first, and you may find that you have difficulty discarding things that have sentimental value. After a little while, things will be much easier, and you might be surprised at how easy it is to tell if something sparks joy. Repeat this process with bottoms, undergarments, socks, and lastly, shoes.

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Step Three

Once you’re finished sorting, you may find that you’re only left with about a third to a quarter of the original pile. Don’t panic about not having enough to wear – you have everything you need. Be sure to pack the discard pile in a bag right away, or you might be tempted to have another look. Now it’s time to put away the items that you’re keeping! The KonMari Method is all about the folding. As a general rule of thumb, fold everything that wouldn’t look better hung. For example, fold jeans, bulky sweaters, and tee shirts; hang flowy skirts and blouses. Stack clothing vertically in the drawer so you can see each item like the spines of books on a bookcase. Hang the clothing in your closet grouped by type and length, with the longer, bulkier items (like sweaters and coats) on the left and lighter, shorter items (like blouses and skirts) on the right. Visually, the clothing in your closet should rise to the right.

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Step Four

List the items that didn’t spark joy on Totspot so they may be able to spark joy in someone else’s life! Download the app, list your items, and say hello to your new, clutter-free lifestyle!

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Happy organizing!

Tales from a Totspot Newbie

by Totspot Team

The following is a guest post by Becky Hellwig, a lifestyle and tech blogger based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She blogs at siliconvalleylodge.com and is active on Instagram.

I recently found Totspot and am falling hard.

 
As a mom of three girls I am always hoping to find that one dress that is the perfect size and is on sale. As you might expect, I really don’t have time to actually go and shop at the mall. Oh, and this time of the year can be a little overwhelming especially when valet parking is also full.

Instead what I love to do is lay on the sofa in my pajamas and have a Totspot shopping experience.

 
My first shopping experience as a newbie was not so difficult.
First, you need to download the Totspot app. Oh, I know you have space on your smart phone. You know all those photos you have saved? Yep, all 2,000 can download onto your computer or better yet those blurry ones? Yeah, just delete. Create a login account.

Next, create your Family Profile. Whom do you shop for on a regular basis? I shop for the twins and Stella. Did you know you can also shop for yourself? Oh yeah!

Add a credit card, your address and start shopping. I bet you’ll love a few things in your feed, but you can also use the search button to narrow down your choices and find exactly what you’re looking for.

Now you ask what was my first purchase?

My little Rosie and Marybelle love Frozen’s Elsa and Anna. Rosie is always “Elsa” and Marybelle is stuck being “Anna” whom she adores. Did I mention their daddy is named Olaf? Serious, their little friends love that and Olaf says “Do you need a warm hug?”

totspot hairbowsI had to order not one, but two Frozen headbands with bows from @tessaclosets. For $3.oo each, I’m thinking their cousins are getting new headbands for Christmas, too.

The Totspot app is very easy to use.

 
I say it’s like thrift shopping but you always find something you love at a very good price. It’s also a great way to earn some extra cash. I’ve thought about selling some of the girls’ clothes on Totspot but I prefer purchasing new clothes and receiving a cool package in the mail.

How was your first experience using the Totspot shopping app? We’d love to hear more tales from our Totspot newbies!

5 Times I Wished Kids’ Clothes Came in MY Size

by juliannecronin

Do you ever find yourself staring longingly at your kids’ adorably-sized sweaters and shoes, wishing you somehow could fit into them? Yeah, me too. It’s totally unfair how scrumptious kids’ clothes are these days. These are the five outfits I wish came in my size (and if I ever find them, I’m replicating ASAP!).

Faux-fur hoodie

How sweet is this mini cargo coat with a faux-fur hoodie?! She is totally rocking the look with a chambray shirt, leopard print leggings, and lace-up boots. I’m definitely adding this outfit to my casual Friday rotation.

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Knit beanie + slouchy cardigan

This little boy could not be cuter in this head-to-toe ensemble. I’m feeling the cuffed denim, knit beanie, and slouchy cardigan and wishing this entire outfit came in my size.

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Denim overalls

Ladies take notes: overalls are back and this cutie knows it! I love the idea of wearing a cozy sweater underneath and adding a fun patterned scarf to complete the look.

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Lace dress + rain booties

This little girl knows what’s up. I love the juxtaposition of her tea-length lace dress and rain booties. Such a fun and unique outfit that I totally want to copy. P.S. Also, that HAT!

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Camel swing coat

I’ve been on the hunt for a camel-colored swing coat for months! Add in a cozy cream beanie, and black leggings and I’d never take this outfit off.

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What kids’ clothes do you wish came in your size?

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