Tag Archives: Michelle Starbuck Designs

Michelle Starbuck Fall 2016 (+ a giveaway!)

Michelle Starbuck Designs Fall 2016

A model I am not; a mega fan of Michelle Starbuck Designs I am. So it was pretty much the coolest thing ever when my favorite Chicago jewelry maker asked if I would be her fall look book model. Dream gig! Back in June, we got together with Emily Prendergast of Maya Mueble to photograph her beautiful jewels. I love Michelle’s simple geometric designs and how she incorporates stones into her pieces. I cannot wait to wear my favorite pieces from the collection and Michelle is also giving away a Reiden Necklace to one of you!

Here’s a peek at some of my favorite looks! Details on how to enter the giveaway are at the end of the post.

Michelle Starbuck Design Fall 2016

I get major 70s vibes from the Parcel bracelet. I love how it drapes around the wrist.


Blue looks pretty good on blue, don’t you think? I can see wearing both of these with cozy fall knits. Cannot wait to accent my collection of grey sweaters with these blues! Wearing the Primer and Shift necklaces and the Shift bracelet.

Chicago Jewelry DesignerStatement earrings! The labradorite stone in the Eye Drop earrings is beautiful. I like to dress up my ears when I wear my hair up.

Michelle Starbuck Chicago Jewelry

Party in the back! I mean, you could. Love the backside take on the Mini Vega and longer Brass Vega necklaces layered. One awesome thing Michelle always does with her necklaces is allow you to customize the chain length.

And, the piece de resistance that you can win…Michelle Starbuck Design Giveaway

312 Beauty Laurie

After seeing a few pieces with labradorite, aren’t you just loving how it always takes on a different look depending on what you’re wearing? The Reiden Necklace is really special and I’m so thankful to Michelle for giving one away to you guys.

You can enter through Rafflecopter below – there are a few ways to get more entries. The giveaway will close on August 19 and (1) winner will be notified next weekend. At this time, we can only ship to the U.S. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

All photos in this post taken by Emily Prendergast of Maya Mueble.

312 To Do: Shop Madewell + MSD Jan. 28

Madewell 312 Beauty

Grab your chambray and leather totes: there’s a Madewell and Michelle Starbuck party this week! I’m pretty excited to put on my party pants and host a fun evening of shopping at Madewell Rush Street with my favorite Chicago jewelry designer on Thursday, January 28, from 6-8 p.m. Michelle just released her spring line and will be offering 15% off all items during the event. And, Madewell will also be offering 20% off purchases of $125 or more. Oh, and champagne. Always champagne.

No RSVP is required but you can sign up here. Hope to see Chicago friends and faces there.

A few of my favorites from Madewell + MSD:

MSD Ladder Necklace | Perception Studs | Orson Loafer | Cali Demi-Boot Jeans | Binary Bracelet | Continuum Collar Necklace | Transport Rucksack

Serenity Now

Is 2016 going to be the year of calm? For seemingly the first time, there’s a direct wellness bent to Pantone’s Color of the Year. The Pantone Institute, declarer of color trends, chose Rose Quartz and Serenity as its color(s) for 2016. In their explanation, they mention our need to “seek mindfulness and well-being as an antidote to modern day stresses” and how these colors join together to “demonstrate an inherent balance between a warmer embracing rose tone and the cooler tranquil blue, reflecting connection and wellness as well as a soothing sense of order and peace.”  I’m buying into this school of thought. I think these colors are soothing and noticed I have all sorts of RQ and Serenity around my home and in my beauty routine.

Pantone 2016

Chicago jewelry maker Michelle Starbuck designed this beautiful Picasso Jasper Necklace. I’ve seen it at her studio and everyone has slightly different color variances. To me it looks like the sky – I love the shape of the pendant!

I’m really into this rosy lipstick from nūdus. The color rocks but the formula is really what sets it apart. It’s like a juice for your lips – there’s organic cold pressed oils from pumpkin, kiwi, raspberry and pomegranate.

Ahhhh, serenity to a T: May Lindstrom The Blue Cocoon. This blue balm is my special winter treat. Majorly moisturizing and made with blue tansy (from chamomile) to ease emotional anxiety.

Be so on top of those Color of the Years with these Rifle Paper Co watercolor thank you cards. One of my 2016 intentions: send more handwritten thanks.

Spritzing rosewater on your skin has tons of skin care benefits and is a ritual I enjoy, especially for a mid-day refresh. In addition to Bulgarian rose water, Aster & Bay’s mist also has honeysuckle extract, aloe and Himalayan pink salt…which you can get a little taste of if you lick your lips. It’s that same satisfaction I get when I eat/drink the salt off a margarita glass.

Another made in Chicago gem: La Bella Figura Crema Virtuosa. The secret ingredient here is a tree resin called Sangro de Drago. You can’t feel it or see it but it forms an “invisible” protective layer on skin and underneath, the resin goes to work in a time release manner. It’s crazy how effective this night time moisturizer is, especially when topped with a facial oil to seal it all in further.

One of my favorite ever Essie polishes, the so serene Lapiz of Luxury.

Cuyana’s motto is fewer, better. I love this wallet – the leather is buttery soft and meant to last.

Cheers to a year of calm!

Effortless in Spirit and Style

Laurie Leopold - 312 Beauty

Phone tucked in my purse. Boots strapped on and ready to walk. Eyes wide open. Effortless in spirit and style. This is how I take in the city. This is how I clear my head. And, my gosh, do I freaking love the invigoration I feel as my eyes gaze up and across the skyline. Every one of us has a daily grind. I feel the stress of mine melt away when I’m going from A to B. Taking a moment to observe the details in everything — the faces of others around you, the curves of skyscrapers, the stop and go of traffic—I can’t help but feel a sense of togetherness and pride. We all share a skyline. We all make this city great in our own way.

Chicago is filled with doers and makers.

Chicago Skyline

Michelle Starbuck Jewelry

Consider the doers. Like this group of teachers — Peggy, Amy and Jill — that have the patience and will to, well, teach in Chicago Public Schools. I admire their dedication, resilience and what they do for the little peoples. That can’t be an easy job, right? Collectively, we strapped on our boots (mostly…Jill  be doing her fabulous thing in red pumps), took in the skyline and let the stress unwind with some good old fashioned silliness and girl time.

Michelle Starbuck Designs

Effortless Style Chicago

Consider the makers. We are all wearing one of Chicago’s most talented jewelry designers – Michelle Starbuck Designs. Michelle is no stranger on my blog – I make my adoration of her known on the regular. Her ability to turn a vintage tile and a brass chain into something spectacular is incredible. Michelle’s creations lend themselves to any wardrobe but especially to my effortless ways. I’m wearing the Parrallelogram Studs and Hexagon Chain to complement this look. You could say this is my uniform. I have this tee – aptly named the ‘Effortless Tee’ in three colors and wear these Madewell boyfriend jeans constantly. I love the cuffed look with boots in the winter months. And, I’ve been toting along the Lo & Sons The Pearl Crossbody Bag since Christmas. It has so many zippered compartments – pure organizational bliss!

Remember when I wrote a manifesto? A cheeky one, for sure, but one of my favorite lines is about loving your city. So put your phones down, go for a walk, take in the details and let it love you back.

I saved the BEST for last. Michelle Starbuck is offering you something special starting today through the entire month of February: 20% off with code MSD20. Just enter it at checkout on her website.

I can’t possibly pick a favorite piece, but I wear the Super Chunky Chain 2.0 Bracelet almost every day and love her geometric stud earrings.


Photos by Erin M. Bassett

Gift Local This Holiday

Chicago Holiday Gift Guide

Black Friday on the internet is a scary place to be.  Anyone else get absolutely sucked in by all of the sale emails? Self-control is the name of the game. I’d give my BF performance a C+ this year, guys. While I did hit up some brick & mortar shops, most of the damage I did was online. In the process, though, I developed the ultimate gift guide to help you treat all the loves on your list. This year, I’m doing holiday gift guides the 312B way…local, feminine and bold. It’s how I roll. First up, let’s start with Chicago’s finest.

I am a coco-oil devotee and often recommend others get on the bandwagon. But giving someone a giant tub of Nature’s Way isn’t exactly a “pretty” gift. Enter Cocovit, harvested from fair trade coconuts in South India and made in the 312. That packaging, tho…right? They even make a mini!

I deem La Bella Figura’s Lisette La Coquette to be the perfect red lip tint for all. I’ve seen it on all complexions, from my shade of fair to THEE Lisette who has a deep olive complexion. It looks banging every time. I also recommend checking out the LBF Skin Tonics that are like vitamins for your skin, meant to be used before moisturizer and serums. I’m all about gifting for the complexion!

There’s a great shop on Montrose and Winchester called Alapash, owned by the terrarium master of the USofA— seriously, no one does it better than Marco. He takes such care in his craft, calling the succulents his “little babies.” His shop is filled with all sorts of unique treasures and he even has a pop-up at Gallery 19 until January 1.

One of the highlights of my year was discovering the talented Michelle Starbuck. I constantly wear her jewelry and am gifting it to just about everyone this holiday (spoiler alert). I love her stud earrings – especially these diamonds – and the malachite conical necklace!

Being the beauty gal that I am, I like to gift a makeup bag and fill it with a few beauty treats. I love the simple masculine aesthetic of Pine & Plastic designs – handmade, sewn and painted in Chicago by a young designer named Andrew Wayne.

Anyone living in the Midwest knows: blankets are ALWAYS a perfect gift. Maya Mueble (founded by Emily Prendergast and her brother Brian) discovers small family artisans in Latin America and brings their handcrafted creations to Chicago. This wool blanket is made in a small village of Guatemala with a foot on treadle loom and is the thickest coziest blanket I’ve ever felt!

And, if you are in Chicago and you prefer to do your gift-getting in person, there are a few great shows coming up. Renegade Market is back for the holidays on December 6 and 7 at the Bridgeport Art Center and Dose Market is December 14 in the West Loop.