Posts tagged style
Winter's pocket essentials
This is a sponsored post by Kleenex Brand. However, all opinions expressed are my own. Kleenex has been making design accessible for decades, and their new portable packs are super cute for everywhere you're headed.

Welcome to March, lovelies! February breezed by us with its formidable wind chill, and I'm ready to invite in the melt of March. The change in temperatures has my family searching for the closest tissue, and sinus issues have been bothering each of us. We've gone through a lot of Kleenex, even the emergency box in the car, in the last few weeks.

In the cold months of winter, my mom (and her mom, and probably back another generation as well) always has a fresh tissue up her sleeve. She is the kind of lady who is ready at hand for THAT moment when you need it. She's always prepared.

But I know, I, as the mom of 3 littles, am not always excited to trek around a wad of tissues. I find things up my sleeve irritating. In fact, I'm not even that keen on carrying a purse or bag at all.

Most of the time, when I'm heading out the door, my essentials go right in my pockets instead of a tote.

I will admit that I have done the ball of toilet paper in the pocket when called to duty with small, runny noses (have you, too?). But check out what I'm sporting these days. Kleenex has a great line of on-the-go packages in a ton of different styles that go with my gray wool as well as my bright paisley coat. They're super slender to carry, too, so that I still have room for my keys, my phone, and my favorite shade of red lipstick.

When it's necessary for me to act like a grown-up and pull out a canvas tote or an envelope clutch, I take along a few extras.

Throw in my go-to mascara, my lip treatment for the brutality of the Midwest, an alternative pair of earrings to switch up a look, and a great pen. And my Kleenex are making the whole medley of objects somehow look coordinated and intentional... and I'm pretty fond of that.

Check out all the other styles of on-the-go packages that fit with just about any look for men or women.

But do spill... Do you fill your pockets first or go straight to the bag? What are your essentials?

Thanks so much to Kleenex for the perfect timing of these treats. If you're near Grand Central Station on St. Patrick's Day stop by to see the new Kleenex brand designs from Isaac Mizrahi. Oh, yeah, and the prizes will be good.


Frock Files and Joy: 12 Blogger Christmas

Nine days into the 12 Blogger Christmas, and today I'm giving you one of my very favorites (I mean..they're all my favorites, but...). Joy is so aptly named, and I've been blessed to work on a number of great projects with her. Remember Turn It posts? Or our most recent adventure with Pennies for Love?

In the last year, Joy has made some amazing projects for You Are My Fave as well as opening up her own styling and photography biz, and she is going to take the world by storm in 2014.

I'm lucky to collaborate with her and blessed to call her friend.

I started Frock Files because I wanted a place to be creative and to store creative inspiration within my own parameters. The blog has grown into a much deeper undertaking, in large part because of the friendships I've made with other bloggers along the way. These friends push me to expect more of myself and encourage me just by letting me know they're excited to see what's next.

Frock Files is all about simple ways to create more beauty in your life. I love eating delicious food, dressing up, and making pretty things, and those things are important to me, but in the end it's the experiences in my life -- spending time with great people -- that matter most. So my blog is all about finding easy ways to cook, craft, and get dolled up, so you have more time to do the things you really want to do. My husband and I joke that it's literally a blog about having your cake and eating it too.

Aside from Frock Files, I write about beauty for My Thirty Spot. I also have a photography site called Frock, and I'll be teaching the food styling and photography workshop in a few weeks at Altitude Summit.

Pineapple Coconut Cloud Cake:

A Care Package From Paris:

A Care Package From Paris! from Joy Uyeno on Vimeo.

How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others:


My big hope is for my blog to continue to grow and evolve in interesting ways, while maintaining a genuine spirit of friendship. I'm working on some ideas for the coming months that involve bringing some of the focus to a local level, highlighting independent businesses here in New England, and elsewhere when we travel. I hope that keeping things fresh for both me and my readers is what will allow the blog to thrive.


This year, I'd really like to improve further on my photography skills and introduce more video content to the blog -- helped along by investing in a new DSLR! I've been drooling over a particular camera for the past few months and I'm hoping to purchase one in the first quarter of this year.

I also want to remember to enjoy my blog. It's so easy to get stuck in what I should be doing, rather than what's fun and interesting. That's a surefire way to begin thinking of blogging as an obligation, when my wish is for it to always be something I do because I love doing it.
It feels so good to celebrate the hard work of truly talented and kind people. Joy and I will be teaming up with the great Sheri Silver in February for a special to your pantry and be sure to tune in!

On the ninth day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Frock Files.

On the eighth day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Design Improvised.

On the seventh day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Bring Joy.

On the sixth day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Minnow + Co.

On the fifth day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Donuts, Dresses, and Dirt.

On the fourth day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Design + Life + Kids.

On the third day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Design Stitch Go.

On the second day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Trouvé Magazine.

And Lulu the Baker !

P.S. Coming to you tomorrow an artist, musician, and conversationalist extraordinaire.

P.P.S. Today's #30Sketch

Chat It Up: Outward Appearances

             SALE Graphic Art Print "My Hair Isn't Messy" 8x10 in Gold and Dark Gray

Go buy this here.


One of my favorite times of the week has arrived, friends! Let's chat it up.

Today's topic? Beauty. And not the amazing, inner light - the one that shines so bright in those who radiate beauty and whose lives reflect that brilliance.

Nope, we're talking exterior, surface today.

If you haven't heard me blab about it yet, let me share the good news (did you hear the angel choir voices), I'm heading to Alt NYC. This lovely day of fun will be hosted at Martha's HQ, and I will have the chance to chat with some of the most fabulous bloggers around the country. I can't wait to show you everything I see. This will be my very first trip to the Big Apple so any and all advice is welcome!

Honesty here: I'm already stressing about what I'll wear. Or more how I'll look.

I admit it, I'm vain, particularly when I'm meeting new people. It's not my best quality. But, it is.

I'm a gal on a limited budget so I've been trying to prioritize my look. Without saying, I would love to have those to-die-for shoes, with a killer dress, a touch of color in my newly trimmed locks, with some fresh makeup, and accessories that are more than memorable. But, that's not gonna happen.

So, let's talk surface here, friends.

Besides the confident walk, the gleam in the eye, and a dazzling smile, what do you notice first when you meet someone?

Where do you invest your money? Great make up? A signature hair style? Nails that complete a look? I'm really interested in your answers.

xoxo, MJ 

It's a good mom day when...

My mom is fabulous at a great many things. Some I recognized even as an awkward, mall-bang-wearing (not a word), self-conscious teen. Many, many more I have discovered like golden Easter eggs in the great hunt of parenthood.

She and my dad have been so gracious to come and stay with our family during the first few weeks home with each of my new babes. And, let me tell you, my mom can whip a house in to tidy, sparkling clean order like nobody I know, and she can do it with breakneck speed and still be raring to cuddle or cajole her precious grandchildren.

Growing up in my house, with my mom as the lone chef, I sat down to a hot meal every night, served family style with just the right amount for each of us and always little waste.

During my new mommy days, when my mom and dad stayed with us, my mom put on the apron (literally) as head chef, coming in with her meals and menus already set and a grocery list preplanned for my father's day trips. Those weeks, though exhausting and surreal, were totally heavenly and peaceful for me as my sweet mother added the delicious smells and necessary order that my new (and now forever) chaotic life so needed.

My mother knows how to present a meal. She presents a snack. She presents a drink. In creating her menus, she considers nutrition as well as color combinations, food placement, and dish selections. In my home, I watched her find new serving dishes, carefully fluff and arrange the food on my plates, and fold my cheap paper napkins into something special.

This gift is one of those I overlooked as a youngling, and one that I, now in her shoes as a mom of three, totally get. And I realize that all of these little (and significant) ways that she cared for me through her meals and treats and presentations made me enjoy food more and in the end make some better choices.

We all know just how beautiful the colors and textures of food can be, and we're blessed to have so many beautiful food blogs out there to elicit intense salivation (check out Dawn's amazing food photos that I swear I can smell through the screen). 

But before I had those, I had my mom, and I'm trying in little ways to incorporate her energy. I completely feel like a rockstar mom when our food looks like I want to take out my iPhone and snap a shot (and I get a great laugh out of little L asking me why I'm taking pictures of grapes). My children have a visceral reaction, too, though they would not be able to name it, much as I was unable to do the same in my parent's home.

It's a good mom day when the grapes are sliced and placed in a pretty white bowl. I've achieved the simple, true act of pouring out the love I've been so graciously given.

Love ya, Mom.


MJ Kocovskifood, kids, love, mom, style
I'm making a spectacle of myself.


Recently my husband and I got away for a 10-year anniversary getaway (oh yeah!), and I came home with a fabulous painting, terrific photos, and one very crooked, broken pair of glasses. I made some valiant efforts to bend, push, and stuff the lens back into no avail.

So what's a girl to do?

Okay, I admit it, I'm not so sad. These glasses have served me well for the last 8 years and let's face it, I need a fresh perspective, literally.

I'm off to the eye doctor today, and I'm fancying all sorts of bold, dark, artsy frames for my new look. I swoon over nerdy specs, and I've been pinning looks that totally inspire me to bring out the inner geek in a gorgeous way.

Celebs like Anne Hathaway, Tina Fey, and Jennifer Aniston have made some step-back choices that are totally swaying me. The beautiful Keiko Lynn, style blogger (with stunning, glowing skin) has made me envious for quite a while now.

My prescription is not pretty, but I hope my final spectacles will be.

How about you? Who's wearing glasses that have caught your eye?

MJ Kocovskiglasses, style