4.25.2016

Twist Braid Chignon Inspired by The Duchess of Cambridge



My favorite look from The Duchess of Cambridge's recent tour to India was this beautiful mint lace dress from Temperley. What an exquisite dress. I can just imagine attending a garden tea party in something so lovely.

I also loved the braided chignon in her hair, and in this week's video, I recreate the chignon for you. This look is easy to achieve for anyone with medium to long hair.

This chignon is perfect for a hot summer's day when you want your hair off of your neck, yet still want to look presentable. Be sure to watch my video to see all of the steps. If you are unable to see the video above, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

To see the complete collection of looks from the Duke and Duchess's India tour, visit WhatKateWore.com

News
Thank you to Jenny Williams of JenEricGeneration blog for sending me these gifts from her beautiful new art collection, Carrot Top Paper Shop. Jenny draws portraits of literary heroines. Her whimsical sketches and quotes make inspiring decorations for little girl's rooms. Jenny knew how much I love Anne of Green Gables and sent me Anne's portrait along with Elizabeth Bennet and Jane Eyre. I have commissioned Jenny to do portraits of my own daughters for their rooms. She is so talented!



Check out her fun shop on Etsy, Carrot Top Paper Shop. She is offering a discount to the readers of The Daily Connoisseur: 25% off orders of $25 or more with code JENNIFERSENTME. Thank you, Jenny!


Letter of the Week

Tera L. writes:

Hi Jennifer,

I am writing this message to say a big thank you for adding to my life for the better.

I have only been following you for a few short weeks and have already noticed positive outcomes.

I am writing this after just having ended a phone call where I found out that I got a new job that I had recently interviewed for.

I just had to write to you because my new employer told me that one of the reasons he hired me is because he noticed my poise during the interview! He actually used that exact word!

I thought you might be pleased:)

Keep up the good work. And thank you from the bottom of my heart.


Hi Tera, I was thrilled to no end after reading that your interviewer was impressed with your poise. I firmly believe that poise is a marvelous secret tool that we can use to enhance our lives. I am so happy for you. Congratulations on your new job!


Let me know if you try out this chignon for yourself. Send me a picture over social media using the hashtag #MADAMECHIC

See you soon!


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4.18.2016

Haircut Before & After Plus Makeup Chat Tutorial



Join me for another fun beauty video. This week I try out a sample of Armani Luminous Silk foundation and give you my impression. I also try a new eyebrow pencil (Chanel sculpting eyebrow pencil ) and share a simple daytime smoky eye look. There is also a before and after of my new haircut.

If you are unable to see the video above, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

You do not need to use the makeup I use in order to achieve this le no makeup look. I like to encourage women to use what they already have in their makeup bags and to have fun experimenting. For those who are curious, here is a list of the products I use in the video:

Armani Luminous Silk foundation shade 5.75
Benefit Fake-up under eye concealer
Benefit Boi-ing concealer
Laura Mercier translucent setting powder
Chanel sculpting eyebrow pencil
Urban Decay primer potion
Chanel Tisse Rivoli eyeshadow palette
Chanel kohl eyeliner in ambre
MAC mineralize blush in Lovejoy
YSL Faux Cils mascara in burgundy
Hourglass lipstick in mural

Nails: OPI "Barefoot in Barcelona"

News

Polish Your Poise with Madame Chic is now available in Czech. Thank you to all of the Czech readers who have reached out to me!

Happy Meets Home reviews Lessons from Madame Chic

Comments of the week
On Get Ready and UnReady with me Night at the Ballet, Lillian writes: Your story about your husband and the blue bird dancer cracks me up. I love going to plays and concerts with my mom when she is in town. I grew up with a theater background that she largely facilitated, and now going to these performances is something we really enjoy doing together.
To add to Marla's comment of the week (and Alicia's comment above) I asked my mom as a little girl why we wore dresses for church, and she always said dressing up for church demonstrated to yourself and to others that you respected the event enough to wake up in the morning and prepare yourself. In high school she encouraged my sister and I to dress well for tests, speeches, and auditions. To this day when I have a challenging thing in my life, I take this same approach and make it an occasion to dress well for. In a chemistry class in college I remember taking the final exam surrounded in a sea of sweatpants at 9am wearing a sundress and heels.

It really works. By the way, something your channel has inspired me to do is take better care of my skin. I like that you included an "unready" routine to this week's video - it can be hard to get motivated to take your makeup off after a fun night. It's so easy just to crawl into bed and deal with it in the morning. I have actually committed to a skin care regime now, and after trying some samples I have found a facial cleanser and moisturizer that I absolutely love. I've even noticed how much clearer and smoother my skin looks and feels now that I've committed a few months to my routine.


Hi Lillian, thank you for your comment. I loved your mother's answer as to why we dress up for certain occasions. I am glad you enjoyed my recent Get Ready and UnReady with me video. Thank you!

On the guestbook, Sarah writes:
I would love to share my story with you…
My parents divorced when I was a young child, and I come from two sides of a family that are polar opposites. One side is chic, and the other is…well…not. I spent Christmases with the chic side, but lived my daily life with the un-poised. Whenever I was with my chic family, I always felt nervous, self-conscious and awkward because they had a poise that I couldn’t wrap my mind around. And yet, I longed to be more like them. When I returned to my home life, I was a bit downcast and wished my lifestyle were more like my chic family’s. All the while, I could not put my mental finger on why and how they were so different. This was my experience throughout my childhood and teens. I yearned to have the grace, style and poise of my chic aunts and their families, but had no idea what to do or think. It was a painful part of my upbringing. Your book has helped me define what I could not seem to conceptualize about my chic family’s traits. While I have been able to acquire more poise and grace as I have become an adult, your books have helped me to take it to the next level and be more conscious of the habits I would like to develop. You were so fortunate to have had the experience of living in France, and it has clearly changed your life. I hope I can give the same type of experience to my children. It is a process and I’m not as chic as I would like to be, but I am working on it.
Thank you,
Sarah


Hi Sarah, thank you for your note on my guestbook page. I am so happy that you have taken on the journey of poise as an adult and am grateful to you for sharing your story with us.

On Common Courtesy Follow-Up Discussion, Christina S. writes:
I believe the phenomenon you're addressing is a result of the epidemic entitlement mentality that has swept our nation. Also, people seem to think that the fact that a service is a paid one (I.E. your play set assembly, a waitress, or a grocery check out) means they are not obligated to show the courtesy of gratitude. I also think that, at times, people are insecure in expressing gratitude. There is such a focus of self importance in our culture that to express gratitude, truly a form of humility, can be seen in some circles as weakness and inferiority. Some would say your values are archaic but I am one young lady who agrees that class, like good taste, never goes out of style.

Hi Christina, that is a really interesting insight regarding paid services and gratitude. Thank you for giving us food for thought!

I hope you enjoy this week's video. I would love to hear from you. Did you experience melasma during a pregnancy? Do you have any great foundations to share with us? Any other makeup recommendations? See you next time on The Daily Connoisseur!



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4.14.2016

Common Courtesy Follow-Up Discussion



This week's video, Common Courtesy Etiquette Discussion, had such an electrifying response from The Daily Connoisseur community! I received hundreds of comments from readers who had common courtesy stories to share. There were encouraging stories of hope and horrifying stories of etiquette disasters. If you haven't had a chance yet, be sure to check the comments on YouTube, the blog and social media.

Today, I wanted to do a quick follow-up discussion to address a few popular topics from the comments:

- What do you do with unwanted attention from someone you have extended common courtesy to?

- How do you maintain safety while using common courtesies?

- Is rudeness more prevalent in big cities?

- Male roles in society with regard to the modern woman.

- What is a teacher with disrespectful students to do?

- and lastly... Where did all the gentlemen go? (Hint: It's where all the ladies went!)

Check out this special bonus video for the answers to these questions and more. If you cannot see the video above, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

News
Tomorrow, Friday, April 15th, the Czech edition of Polish Your Poise with Madame Chic is released. Thank you to all of the Czech readers for embracing the Madame Chic books. I hope you enjoy this latest edition!



Comments of the Week

There were so many comments that I could have chosen for this post. It's nearly impossible to choose! Thank you for all of your stories and wonderful insights. Here are two interesting ones to think about:

Emily G writes: Thank you for taking up this torch! About two years ago, the art teachers at my son's school did such a good job hosting the school art show, I could tell a lot of work went into it. So I wrote the organizers a thank you note. A few days later after sending the note, I ran into the art teacher and she told me that I was the first parent in 14 years to write her a thank you note. I was stunned.

Hi Emily, I love thank you notes for this very reason. They really do mean a lot to the recipient, especially in this day and age where fewer and fewer people send them.

Stephanie W. writes: I am so glad you spoke about this today. I would like to share a story. I was listening to the radio one day and the host of the show was talking about how he tried to hold the door open for a woman coming into the gas station behind him and she proceeded to chew his head of for holding the door open for her. For the next hour the program took calls and other people told their similar stories... I think there are some people who would normally help someone but have been bullied into thinking they are wrong for doing so. I think it is very important to show gratitude in these types of situations. You really don't know who is watching.

Hi Stephanie, this is very interesting! I would love to have listened to that show to hear what the callers had to say. Be sure to watch today's video because I do touch on this subject.

As always, I would love to hear from you. Let me know what your thoughts are on the subjects discussed in today's video. Have a wonderful weekend and I will see you next week!


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4.11.2016

Common Courtesy Etiquette Discussion



I write in Polish Your Poise with Madame Chic that "common courtesies are the Manners 101 of the etiquette world". They are the basic courtesies that we extend each other each day that make the world a more pleasant place. Common courtesies can be as simple as saying please and thank you, or they can be more complex like helping someone in need or offering refreshments to a guest. I have noticed that common courtesies in our society have taken a decline in recent years. Have you noticed this too?

This week, I have three stories for you from my personal life that have to do with common courtesies. This will be a fun discussion to have, so please leave your thoughts in the comment section below. I want to hear it all- the good news and the bad! Do you have any encouraging stories to share? Any common courtesy horror stories? Chime in below and your comment could be chosen as comment of the week.

If you are unable to see the video above, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or check out my channel www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

News
Huffington Post travel mentions me in their article, 8 Travel Etiquette Tips to Get You Off The Ground.

Castlephile Travels writes about Lessons from Madame Chic in her article called, Simple Pleasures.

Comments of the Week
Pauline D writes: I must tell you a most embarrassing story!! We are in France at the moment and I wanted to get my hair cut. As there always seem to be a lot of hairdressers around I thought it probably wouldn't be necessary to make an appointment and so today when we were shopping at the Leclerc there was a hairdresser in the mall ........let me back up and tell you what I decided to wear today....As it's still cool I put on a long paneled skirt in a grey weave, my leather boots (so far, so good) and then, although we were going to town I figured as it's cold I would keep my coat on so I decided to pull on a grotty old white long sleeved t-shirt (why do I still have it you ask...) and a dusty purple short sleeve t-shirt over the top with my camel coloured corduroy short belted coat. I figured that as we drove into town I could always pop back to the motor home and change if it got warmer. Well, the hairdresser was able to cut my hair right there and then, no appointment necessary.......and she asked me for my coat!! To say that she audibly gasped when I took my coat off would be an exaggeration, but her eyebrows definitely rose and she did give my a funny look - I think she thought I'd forgotten to take my pyjama top off. I could have crawled in a hole. So ladies, lesson learned, if you're layering, make sure the underneath layers are as presentable as the outer layers!! (In my defense I will say that a lot of my staples were in the wash......but I'm sure I could have come up with something more presentable).

Pauline, I appreciate your bravery for telling this humorous story! I think we all have a story like this from our past. I know I have many! It's something to laugh at and learn from.

Marla W writes: I learned from your books, Jennifer, how to dress up even simple food by setting a beautiful table. I made a simple soup for a friend for lunch and put on some nice jazz music and welcomed her graciously. She was so enthralled by how she was treated by me that she wrote a lengthy thank you card about how special it made her feel. You are right, it's not about having fancy things, it's about using our best to say to our guest, "you are important to me." I do this with my sons and husband too, and they love it!

Hi Marla, the lunch you made for your friend sounds so special. I'm glad that it made a meaningful impression on her too! Thanks for sharing your story with us.

Amy M writes: For my birthday last week a sweet friend gave me your first book, Lessons from Madame Chic and even at 50 years old, I'm enjoying perusing the pages, remembering my many trips to Europe. Having been reared in the deep South, we still carry on many of the formal traditions, especially at mealtime. But, as Americans, we have sadly lost the art of the life well lived! Thanks for reminding me to continue to teach my three teenage daughters define art of living passionately and beautifully!

Thank you, Amy and happy birthday!

Lisa P writes: I had a similar background to you Jennifer; lots of classical music and lots of books. But, honestly, it was Nancy Drew ( don't laugh) who opened my eyes to intentionally good behavior. I loved her and still do. Nancy had manners, took pride in her appearance, and handled tough situations with grace and poise. I still read those books to remind myself to act my best and try my best. And I'm 53!

Hi Lisa, I loved your comment because Nancy Drew was a big influence for me too! I read every book in the series and still look at them every now and then. Nancy Drew sure had class.

I receive so many interesting comments each week and am not able to feature all of them, so be sure to check out what your fellow connoisseurs are saying on the blog, YouTube channel and social media sites. Chime in this week and let me know your thoughts on common courtesies. Do you have any common courtesy stories to share with us?

See you soon!

Jennifer x

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4.04.2016

Get Ready & Unready With Me Night at the Ballet Don Quixote



Today I have a fun get ready and un-ready with me video for you, once again encouraging you to seek out the arts wherever you may be. I take a trip to Royce Hall to see the Los Angeles Ballet perform Don Quixote. It was my first time seeing that particular ballet and my mother and I just adored it! What a beautiful, vibrant, passionate performance from The Los Angeles Ballet! In this video I'm applying earth-tone makeup and at the end of the night, I take it off and show you a quick skincare routine.



I have been dealing with melasma during this pregnancy (a flush of dark spots on the skin). I had it a little with my other two pregnancies, but this time it is stronger. You can see in the video that foundation helps to even out my skin tone.

If you are unable to see the video above, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

For more on The Los Angeles Ballet, visit their website.



As I always say, you do not need to use the exact products that I use to re-create this look. It is a very simple look that can most likely be created with what you already have at home. For those who are curious, however, these are the products that I use:

Chanel Perfection Lumiere Velvet foundation

Benefit Fake Up under eye concealer

Benefit Boi-ing concealer

Laura Mercier translucent setting powder

Urban Decay primer potion

Chanel Tisse Camelia eyeshadow palette

Chanel kohl eyeliner in ambre

YSL faux cils
mascara in burgundy

Chanel rose initial blush

Clinique chubby stick in fuller fig

Clinique black honey lipgloss

Nail polish: OPI Shorts Story

Simple eye makeup remover pads

Simple Micellar makeup removal wipes

Kensington Apothecary Rose Oil Cleanser

Eminence Calendula Oil


News

Verily Magazine references At Home With Madame Chic's at home aromatic simmering pot recipe in their article on 5 Easy Tips to Reap the Health Benefits of Spring.

Lessons in Loveliness writes about the Madame Chic trilogy in their Lovely Things article.

Emmy Cecelia writes about the inspiration she took away from At Home With Madame Chic in her article, Lenten Lessons: Rearranging Priorities.

Check out this honest and funny review of Polish Your Poise with Madame Chic from Susan Stovall on YouTube.

Another wonderful in-depth video review from Portrait of a Budgeting Planer Girl on Polish Your Poise with Madame Chic.

Comments of the Week

Marla W writes: I have five sons, all adults now, and each has commented on how nice I look on a regular basis and how they appreciate that. This influence makes a difference in who they choose for companions as well as the respect they display through their own personal appearance. The human brain understands that where more effort has been focused, that thing has more value. When we take effort to look presentable each day, we are telling our children and those around us that we have value, because more focused effort was applied. Even young children make this connection in their brains. Bravo, Jennifer Scott! Now, please write a book for the men in society! (Maybe your husband could give the male perspective!)

Hi Marla, I loved your observation about the human brain and how it understands where more effort has been focused. It would be fascinating to do a scientific study on this!

Gabriela R writes: I am so guilty of wearing gym clothes all the time....the more weight I put on...the more I let myself go and not cared about my looks....I am thankful for finding your channel and excited to start changing my ways...:) yey...!!!

Hi Gabriela, I am excited for you! It doesn't matter what size or weight you are, you can look presentable always starting right now.

Helena N writes: Jennifer,i would like to say that my grandmother was born poor and to this day,she still doesn't have too much money to spend on clothes because of her health problems. Despite this fact,she is the BEST dressed in my family. She has few accessories, knows how to combine colors and fabrics and makes cheap clothes look expensive! She is a reference to all my family.

Hi Helena, your grandmother sounds like a wonderful role model. I would love to hear her take on the Madame Chic topics. She sounds like a true Madame Chic herself!

Testimonial
On my author guestbook, Cindy S. writes:

I am so glad I came across your books, website and videos. I am 56 years old and you have completely changed how I want to present myself and my home. I have read your first book and can’t wait to dive into the next two. Now if I can only save my pennies and go to France someday! Thank you!

Thank you Cindy! I can sense the enthusiasm in your letter and am thrilled for the changes coming in your life.


I hope you enjoyed this week's video. This week I would love to hear about your makeup routine. Do you have any favorites to share with us? How have you been seeking out the arts in your own community? Let us know in the comment section below and you could be chosen as comment of the week!

See you next time.

Jennifer x


FTC: All items featured in this video were purchased by me with the exception of Kensington Apothecary Rose Oil Cleanser, which I did a review on last year. All opinions are on my own.


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3.28.2016

Maternity Ten-Item Wardrobe Spring 2016



I hope you had a wonderful Easter weekend! This week I have my maternity ten-item wardrobe for you. Today's video combines both the fashion show and the commentary. My ten-item wardrobe is actually comprised of nine core items instead of ten: six dresses and three skirts. I wear maternity tee shirts with the skirts. The tee shirts are filed in the "extras" category. As you can see, my maternity wardrobe is very simple.

I live in a hot climate (Southern California) so dresses and skirts are the most comfortable for me. I was in need of dresses that could be worn either casual or dressy, and the Seraphine dresses are the perfect choice.

For more casual, summery looks, I have the two sleeveless dresses as well as the three skirts (two long, one short) from Old Navy maternity.



Check out this week's video for in-depth commentary on the items. If you are unable to see the video above, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog or check out my channel
www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur (and be sure to subscribe!)

News
Check out my interview with Kimberly Wilson of Tranquility Du Jour. We discuss Polish Your Poise with Madame Chic and so much more.


Comments of the Week

JoiSharpe writes:

Just stumbled upon this video. Just wanted to say thank you and I agree. I'm soooo tired of seeing ladies (and some men) walking around in pajama pants! They're shopping at the local grocery store, Target, the mall almost everywhere in pajamas! Have we really gotten to the point as a society that we don't even care if we put on clothes??? Have we gotten so comfortable with dress down day that we have forgotten how to dress up? Somebody PLEASE bring back real clothes! Glad I saw this video thought I was the only one concerned about our lack of dressing these days.


Hi JoiSharpe, I feel your exasperation! I think our society has slowly become accustomed to people dressing this way, so for many people it is no longer shocking. Luckily on The Daily Connoisseur you have found a group of people who tend to agree with you.

Unknown writes:

Jennifer, thank you for the vinegar & water cleaning solution idea (I left out the lavender as I didn't have any on hand but am considering adding an essential oil for next time). I went on a Spring cleaning rampage this past week and noticed that the Method all-purpose cleanser I was using just didn't get the job done. Switched to vinegar & water which was much more effective! I even used it to clean our glass shower doors and it was so simple, took less than a minute and left them sparkling clean.

Hi Unknown, I love the vinegar/ water/ lavender cleaning solution too. I use it every single day. I will be sure to do a video tutorial on how I make it in the near future.


Question of the Week

Marie B writes:
Morning! That's our plan for our slipcovered couches. Do you air dry the slipcovers? Iron before replacing on the couch? My grandma always kept her sink full of soapy water, too. I need to start doing that too. Thanks for the reminder!

Hi Marie, we air dry our sofa slipcovers. I would not recommend putting them in the dryer as they could shrink and no longer fit on the cushions. Ironing would be a special touch, but we do not iron ours. As for the soapy water in the sink, I love it! Just be sure to rinse the suds off before placing the dishes in the dishwasher so as not to clog the machine.


I hope you enjoy my maternity spring/ summer ten-item wardrobe. Even if you are not expecting, you can benefit from seeing how a ten-item wardrobe is put in place. Be sure to leave a comment below. I love to hear from you and you might be chosen as comment of the week!


FTC: All items featured in this video were purchased by me. All opinions are on my own.


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3.24.2016

Q&A Chic Background? + Quality Friends



Part two of the Q&A video resumes today. I answer Marisa K's question on what to do if you were not taught chic behavior in childhood and how to shake self-consciousness with developing poise later in life. I also answer Basia S's question on how to find quality girl friends.

Be sure to check out this week's video for the answer to these questions and more. If you are unable to see the video above, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

An important note from last week's video that I wanted to mention, regarding my sink full of suds tip: make sure you rinse off the suds from your dishes before placing them in the dishwasher so you do not clog your machine. Thank you, Ellen G., for this reminder.

Comments of the Week
Wanda A writes:

Hey There. I'm a Canadian, (North Eastern Canada), living in the US for the past 13 years. I just came across your YouTube channel and your books, blog and everything this past weekend!!!! Oh serious joy!!!Right away I started my closet purge. Still a work in progress. Working on my 10 piece S/S wardrobe. I too simply love to wear dresses. And yet have I done that in recent years ...... No! I've asked myself why, finding I have no good reason why. So, as soon as I happened upon your channel and I saw the very pretty dresses, I did a happy dance. It hit me. There's my honest to goodness style. The one I should be true to. And so I've begun.


Hi Wanda, I am so happy you have embraced your true style and are now enjoying wearing the clothes you love. Wonderful!

Tina writes:
Hi Jennifer, I read your book Lessons from Madame Chic and I just want to THANK YOU for writing this book!! I learned so much from you and I appreciate it so much. I was always a very feminine person, but after reading that I have become more ladylike :) I pulled out my slips and started to wear them again. I now appreciate the housework that I have to do. Just adopting a different attitude about things changes everything! I am currently working on my capsule wardrobe. I gave away all of my ill-fitting items and now my closet is a joy to open! Thank you again! Tina

Hi Tina, thank you for your testimonial! I love to hear the exciting changes that take place in people's lives after implementing the tips from the book.

Today I would love to know your thoughts on the topics discussed in the video. Do you have any tips to add? Any questions to discuss? How do you find quality friends? Have you dealt with self-consciousness with developing a chic lifestyle?


I hope you have a wonderful Easter weekend. I will see you next week for my maternity ten-item wardrobe. See you then!

Jennifer x

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