Lets Clutch It.







Once again here i am writing about glorious spring again (can’t you see I’ve broken out the sun glasses.) Today i am going will be talking about something i adore clutches! I have been a huge fan of the little purse ever since college. I started collecting vintage clutches from thrift shops and antique shops. I really do love vintage bags. I’ve been fawning over some clutches recently. I was lucky enough to get to sit down with a company who i adore. I saw a few of the bags on the website. I immediately had to email and chat with Ashlyn’d clutches . I had to have of course fun in my photo shoot today showing you just how many clutches i actually own (the red one is a vintage Furla and I’m obsessed with it) Here’s my chit-chat with Ashlee the designer behind Ashlyn’d Clutches


STIHL: What do you offer over other clutches …what makes yours special?

Ashlynd: Ashlyn’d clutches are very unique. We love the idea of turning something entirely unexpected into a purse. Our bags truly are conversation starters. I think affordability and quality really separate us in the marketplace. We also focus on functionality. Our clutches are made to fit a lot of stuff where many other evening bags barely fit a phone!

STIHL: Who are the primary designers of the clutches? What is your background and history?

Ashlyn’d: My name is Ashlee Nik, I am the designer and founder of ashlyn’d. I was born and raised in Los Angeles where I acquired a love for fashion at an early age watching my mother design belts and handbags. I attended business school as I thought I would pursue a career in finance but could not seem to squash my creative yearning. I then decided to go to fashion school where I studied product development and design. I worked in the fashion industry for several years doing design and product development as well as visual merchandising for companies such as JBrand and Alice + Olivia.

I launched ashlyn’d alongside my mother, Denise Lewinstein, in January of 2013. We wanted to explore the idea of making bags that were entirely unexpected. The concept of creating clutches that looked like marble, granite, wood etc. seemed to inspire the “nature themed” collection. In order to achieve this look, we use acrylics and exotic woods with custom finishes. During the development process, I came up with the idea to create an acrylic bag filled with sand that floats to give a “snow-globe” effect. This developed into a full line of bags with various fillers like pearls, chains, etc. While constructing the bags, it was very important to us that the bags could fit everything a girl may need; a mirror to touch up her makeup, enough room to fit all of the necessities (a phone, lipstick, credit card and ID, and much more!). It was also very important to us that the clutches be priced reasonably so that they would be attainable to the average consumer. Most importantly, we always had a fond appreciation for quality goods that were hand crafted as opposed to having a machine-made assembly line produce our bags. In an attempt to help bring manufacturing back to the United States and maintain quality control, my mother and I chose to work with Los Angeles based artists to construct our clutches.

I was on a search for evening bags and felt the market was lacking something that was truly different but at the same time moderately priced. I spoke with my mother about the idea of creating a bag that looked as though it was made out of a material that was completely unexpected, like marble. This idea ended up emerging into a full collection which my mother, Denise Lewinstein, and I now run. It truly started more as a shopping experience and ended up as a business.


STYHL : What is your design aesthetic? What inspires the clutches?

Ashlyn’d: My desire to bring affordable luxury to a consumer that loves fashion and is not scared to take a risk, certainly influences my brand. Of course, when I am designing I take into account not only what I love and would want to carry, but what I think my friends might love as well. When my mother and my best friend are both fighting over the same bag, I know I have a winner

I take a lot of influence from nature. I am always looking at different types and colors of marbles, shells, pearls, rocks etc.  We have several bags that are made out of wood and I get a lot of inspiration for the finishes from furniture. My father having run one of the largest furniture businesses for 45 years, has allowed him to acquire some of the most beautifully finished antique furniture.


STYHL: What’s the future hold for  Ashlyn’d?

Ashlyn’d: We just launched a few leather styles and we will continue to develop more bags in different materials other than woods and acrylics. We also have some fun exiting collaborations coming up for some other types of accessories which we cannot wait to share with you soon!As you can totally see they are the cutest company don’t you think? Such sweet people to work with.


I enjoyed getting to know the company better. Plus i am still drooling over the teddy clutch and the chalkboard clutch. I hope that you enjoyed my chit chat with Ashlynd, head over to the website and pick out some pretty clutches for yourself. You’ll be pretty happy you did!

Swag Shirt- Thrifted – (Similar Here) | Neon Tube Dress- Thrifted (Similar Here) | Faded Glory Leggings |Neon Flats -Old – Gap- (similar Here)|  Thunderbolt Earrings | Gnome Necklace By Jessiii | Sunglasses Thrifted (Similar Here) | Clutches : Vintage (Similar Styles Here and Here)|  Lipcolo- Fiery Viel By Loreal


Comparing “american icons to alex icons”



This weekend has been real, busy for me as i am finishing up school for a bit (before spring break you know that time where people go to Florida, and get crazy on MTV) I cant help my mind goes back to #MFW for those of you who don’t know Jeremy Scott, he was just named the creative director of Moschino . Jeremy is rather known for his larger than life prints, fun type of items, and really “over the top” way of going about things. I’ve heard quite a few people discussing this collection “as tacky, a down grade to Moschino (which has been around since 1983). Few others have classified it as fun, a bit of a fun side with Moschino, thats what Jeremy Scott exudes. This F/W 14 is all about Iconic, icons that we all know and associate with. Especially in my marketing class we talk about Positioning a lot (which watch me make my teacher proud and talk about it, “positioning is creating a image of your product in a consumers mind, different from your competition”). As Americans we generally think of when we think of food, McDonalds, (one of the largest burger fast food joints in america , can we please talk about how much i love their ice cream) and thats what Jeremy Scott did, he took something everyone recognized as that- and ran with it, to make Moschino a brand everyone associates with. He “positioned” iconic labels already into an iconic label. In this last Sunday it was my first Sunday as an what i call an “official midwest blogger” which i felt hey, this is a real thing what, i met with several girls and i felt a bit out of place because my style isn’t like all the others but hey i thought with Jeremy Scott in mind and his recent show id chanel some of my own icons (like perhaps the California raisins or donald duck ring a bell?) …lets have a look shall we.








Sweater: Thrifted (similar Here) |Shirt Vintage 1988 Mycological Shirt (similar here) |High Waited Polka Dot Leggings thrifted (I Sewed these but you can find them Here) |Vintage Fur Cape (Similar Here) | Shoes: Zalos| Donald Duck Pin Vintage (Here)| California Raisins Suspenders (Similar Here) | Customized Gnome Necklace by JesiiiiDooney & Bourke See Through Bag | floral ring (handemade by me)



have a rad week friends!

What’s On My Mind- Current Favorites

whats on my mind

What’s been on my mind lately? I’ve been doing a lot of thinking and a lot of reading, others blogs, to dive deep into my internal thoughts on fashion, on life, on myself. I’ve been kind of of compiling a list of what’s in going on in my head right now. I have been watching a lot of documentaries on fashion, on writers, to see what there inner psych is. Collecting quotes from others who inspire me, Ive been really inspired by a few people who I really like the freedom of the people who they are. I found this sweet shirt by Jeremy Scott, (from Marlena on self constructed freak) I’ve been feeling such less like an adult, lately it just sucks sometimes when you are an adult, because you suffer with bills, you suffer with high fees of everything. I know I am facing that, (why did I get those damn credit cards again). That kind of of really leads into my next point, on money, I look at others around me and think “it must be nice to have money to go to places and do things when I spend most of my money and resources just to survive”. – In all honesty, that’s not what it is, I keep thinking I go to school, I live in America, I live in a wealthy country, we are just being selfish now aren’t we?



            Secondly I have been thinking a lot about Thrifting, I had been watching a super wonderful documentary called advanced style which follows eccentric ladies from New York city, and there personal style, its crazy good what these ladies, have to discuss with you. It features popular people like Iris Apfel. It talks about basically you can have style at any age, and that you are an artist with style. “People are afraid, People just want to be like everyone else, and want to do what everything is doing”- Iris Apfel, my awesome friend Tziporah Salamon, told me recently (who she was featured in advanced style) “Iowa does have its charm scout out those places such as salvation army, goodwill’s and so forth that give you your charm its not just new york”.  Which has me really thinking about what I love about fashion, these ladies have been pushing me to think about blogging in some other way that’s it more about fashion, and more about labels , but it is your identity. Your style is your identity. “The Majority of Americans Don’t Dress” – Tziporah Salamon The whole idea of this, its more of something that has pushed me to think about what gives me my style charm? Clothes are my life (if you are following me on instagram you know that Im in love with vintage). That’s why Salvation Army has been such a charmer for me, That’s what makes me so successful, in my budget because you cant just go to Barneys NY and pick up Prada loafers, but I can go to salvation army and look at that paisley dress I am dying to wear.




Thirdly I had been thinking of new interesting things about winter, winter depresses me I suffer badly from seasonal depression, which a lot of Americans suffer from but I had seen these gloves in a recent refinery 29 article, these gloves stuck out for me but they are out of stock. But that would make a great DIY.- lets do it (soon I hope I need to scout out leather gloves).



Fourthly and lastly what am I watching recently? – You guessed it the virgin suicides (as for a recent love of finding this out via, Tavi aka Rookie Magazine Editor you know her right?) I had been re-watching this movie, I had read the book along time ago, and watching many more James woods movies (like and your name is Jonah) to think that we are only human, and that we all feel emotions that we are in fact, looking for much more of a interest than anything, and I feel a sense in The Virgin Suicides that these girls, were all looking for some sort of sense that they wanted something more meaningful in there lives, but restraints cut them off (such as there crazy parents) but as Tavi said, a quote from Rodger Ebert said about this film These parents look gruesome to us. All parents look gruesome to kids, and all of their attempts at discipline seem unreasonable. The teenage years of the Lisbon girls are no better or worse than most teenage years. This is not the story of daughters driven to their deaths.”  Although in my own opinion I feel a deep sense of that, you know that I do in a away feel like parental restraints play a huge ordeal in this film. Which goes back to my second thing on my mind, is diving into deeper fashion and what that truly means to me. .




            I hope you don’t all wonder where my content has gone and think what is she really saying? Its just for me ive been doing a lot of thinking and writing and personal story searching for content, and this is where I feel comfortable discussing what’s on my mind lately and what is in my heart.


 {Credits: Sweater By Jeremy Scott (but you make it from Self Constructed Freak), Advanced style, ASOS stunning gloves, Vintage Mini Sixties Dress Here and Here  (kinda like mine) Virgin Suicides Movie


With that,







That’s the Ugliest Monogram, shirt ever.


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Shirt: Thrifted (similar here)  Skirt: Thrifted : Leggings: Thrifted Shoes: thrifted : Bag : vintage holiday travel bag Jewelry: Vintage : Sunglasses: Liz Clayborne Vintage (Similar Here) Lipstick: Wet & Wild in Red Velvet (here)

Photography by Katelyn

Hi there sorry that its been forever since i have written, I am really going to start working on the blog more, i know i say that every time but this time i really mean it. Today in my series of The trends that died out, that are cool again, we have the Ugly Monogram that you wouldn’t ever want to wear. Everyone Likes something customized i mean (HELLO? only reason to own a custom Louis Vuitton) Yesterday i went thrifting, i have been on a recent kick to get rid of things i dont use, and Ive been pretty  on it, and i found this sweet “Mike- Chucks Harley Davidson shirt). More in the last year I have been so recently obsessed with peoples monograms that aren’t mine. Something about the monogram, with someone else initials makes me think of who did it belong to? Who owned it before me? I still fell in love with this Harley shirt i kinda of associate it with that last post i made (wearing men’s clothes is cool again). Again i find myself caught up in this trend, that it is cool to wear the monogram of someone else, i mean my new name is mike anyways! –



The Mens Wear Collection

Hi there,TheMensCollection




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Have you been wondering where I’ve been? I have been hiding away from blogging for a week due to illness, and in general being super busy with my job. Today, I am going to bring you the brand new topic of “The Menswear Collection” in my break down of trends that have died away but are cool now. I recently went thrifting in the men’s side of things, and have really looked at men’s clothing more often than women’s to be honest. They are more interesting sometimes. It has been more of a fun print thing for me recently, and men are always wearing ridiculous button ups, flannels, and bow ties – so why couldn’t women wear that kinda of stuff? I pulled together some prime examples of the way men’s clothing are used today (I.E. the men’s flannel shirt used as a dress, so DIY babes do it). Of course I just had to throw Carrie in there because I once heard Pat Fields describe wearing menswear as very sexy (ie. why women started wearing the “boyfriend jeans” and why Gap made them in every color).

In today’s society, I feel there are no gender switching roles between men and women. Women want to be equally treated as men and put into power positions just the same (i.e. the recent twitter debate about there are no women who sit on the twitter board of directors). So why are we bringing this up? Well geez, if Dennis Rodman can wear ladies clothing , so can I. Women want again to be treated as equals to men, so why are the gender clothes switching recently in fashion today? Is it because we want that equality. For me personally, I saw this as an opportunity as an oh hey an ugly dress, i can make look awesome moment. For most women the menswear line is big and drapy as some larger ladies. Like for me, I like it high waited and some menswear really does provide that stability that in “over-sizing” we want. To throw that in with underwear too, we women thought it was very sexy to have “the boy-short” created for us because we felt sexier in our boys underpants then those thongs we owned.

Women wanted to have something they could feel comfortable in and move about in, so as you find yourself stealing your boyfriends FDNY t-shirt, Ill be rocking my 5x mens shirt as a dress. Only because I felt that I don’t need to shop either side. Sometimes it’s fun for a woman to switch clothing genders! Switch it up!

Wearing: Thrifted XXXL Mens Shirt /Leggings: Kmart // Shoes: vintage sperrys //Bag Louis Vuitton [Vintage Alma]/ Lipstick: “Grace” c/o Jouer costmetics



xox have a fabulous Man-Ful week


The Ugly Sweater Party


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As you can see from the photos, this must be the post you were waiting on right? Today on Styled in the Heartland I am starting a series of #TRENDS that died but are cool now. First, we will start with the ugly sweater. We all know deep in your closet you have that giant bunny sweater your grandma probably knitted you, or in my case bought cheap at K-mart – thanks grandma. You’re possibly thinking what the hell is wrong with you? You’re actually wearing that god awful sweater?

Why yes, the ugly sweater has come up, not only because Bill Cosby made it cool in the 80s, but because in more recent years the art of the ugly sweater has come back in style.  You can find them in places like Urban outfitters, high-end retailers like Nasty Gal , Shop Jeen, and even Jeremy Scott. As we leave a time where the ugly sweater wasn’t cool, the rising “hipster” culture brought back the ridiculous sweater party. So you may find yourself asking, “Why would I wear that? I can’t make that happen.” My personal motto is “You can make tacky happen.” If I were you, and I’m not just suggesting this for your next ugly Christmas sweater party, I’d be looking at my nearest thrift store for gems, because when you find it, you’ll know it. Hence this one I’m wearing. Clearly there was a moral obligation for me to buy it,  am i right? Chances are, you are the only who owns it and it will get you a lot of looks (or for me it was like what the hell?).

For now, I don’t really see this trend dying out ever again because it’s been made cool by today’s generation of kids and adults.  This a definite trend you will see me rocking this winter, so do us a favor and get yourself an awesome UGLY “trendy” sweater.

{Credits : Sweater: Vintage {But im sure you can find one at your nearest salvation army}, Skirt: Target (But thrifted), Leggings: Thrifted: Shoes : Charlotte Russe (old but similar styles here) bag: Vintage Lord & Taylor}

Learning To Work With What You Have: {Love who you are}








{Notice this post will get a 100% Raw}.

Hey guys, I am back with another edition of styled in the heartland. I wanted to take a a post to talk about, well the reason i started blogging. For so long as far as i can remember i’ve always really hated my body i never liked who i was. I was so jealous of people who are naturally skinny and who dont really have to work to have a healthy body. I had to work over 9 months to loose 60lbs and it was so hard, and now i have to continue to even work harder to lose more weight (as i really am aiming that goal but it has been super difficult.) With my body however i am like the in Between i can were a plus size but in shirts I can wear normal sizes. I recently emailed another blogger, telling them within the world of blogging i hated subjecting myself calling me “A plus sized blogger” because i really hate that term, its just a label America slapped upon me. However i like to think of myself as more of a fun sized blogger, with a lot of weird style. I keep fighting myself everyday to get up to eat right to work out because being skinny is/or was my obsession and losing the weight became the best thing in my life that has happened to me but in September and even the beginning of October I’ve really Slipped up because its just been increasingly heard to keep up. I dedicated myself to being the best i can be and that’s when im eating healthy, getting a lot of sleep, and working my body for good.

The More I blog the more i am beginning to understand i have to work with the body i have, and that i have to keep my goals in my mind, the more i am learning about my blog the more i learn about myself. It has been such a great building progress so far. I want to say thank you for those who have been reading so far and really believing in me, because I know that i have to believe in myself, and believe that this blog has kept me in a lot of growth, not only to love me for who i am, and keep focusing on being the best stylist i can be with my own vision and style.

{credits: Dress : Vintage  (yard sale) Shirt: Vintage (yard sale) Shoes Prabal Gurung for target (past season) Neckalca “D” Vinatge Earring: C/O drapes by ashely scott  bag: vintage} Lipstick “Grace” – C/O of Jouer Cosmetics

love always


A New Site, A New Me, & Fun.

Styled In The Heartland-1



            “Hardwork Mixed With Passion, You Can Do Anything” – Corri Mcfadden

….and I am back, with a whole new site! I’d like to present styledintheheartland.com. I’ve been away from blogging for several reasons, but have received lots of encouragement to start up once again. I’m pretty proud of this site and have made a few changes I think you’ll enjoy. Coming back with lots of new ideas! I’ve been working hard at crafting up new outfits and just going with what I know! Since I last blogged, I’ve moved to a new community and am refocusing again on my weight loss. As you know, I lost 60 lbs. and am working on losing more! Even as hard as I’ve been working, it’s a slow process. I don’t see myself as a “Plus Size” blogger, even though there’s nothing wrong with that. I just feel that I’m different and my style makes me stand out from others. I promise to do my best this time and stick with the blog. I hope you stick with me too! Welcome to the my new “Styled in the Heartland” website!


credits : Sweater (Vintage Leather Sweater): Thrifted / Pants : Mossimo – Target (similar here)/ Shoes: Vintage Loafers [Estate Sale Purchase] / Necklace & Earrings C/O of DRAPES by Ashley Scott / Bag : Coach (similar here)


Happy Holidays XX (sorry this is so short)





Hey everyone, i just wanted to write a quick posting (and a bad Christmas photoshoped card)  to write you to tell you happy holidays, thank you for so much for your support of styled in the heartland just the one follower on twitter or like on facebook or subscriber to this blog has meant so much to me, this blog is my one place where i come to be me, and i hope that you keep watching and keep reading THANK YOU.  I hope you and your family have the merriest and happy safe holiday.


Bring Me Home






-Credits:  Beaded Jacket: Thrifted Dress: Thrifted Leggings: (Old gift) (I believe from Wal-Mart) Shoes: Target -Mossimo – Earrings & Bag -Vintage – Thrifted Rings-Heart Ring Watch – Estate Sale- Apple Ring (Dollar Store Here In Iowa) Diamond Pink Ring (Found Object) Horn Necklace- Purchased from Modern Vintage Show in Chicago IL 2011-

Hello, Longtime no see, I know I know. You were probably wondering where I have been hiding? Well life, got kinda crazy but I am back in full swing- reposting  new looks and hopefully some new looks, plus I am working on alot more projects and now have motivation to post more looks, and work harder at this blog because I have been thinking about this blog and what it means to me and I’ve been thinking it’s time to work harder and post more awesome stuff, including inspiration, the blog itself will be getting a make-over soon I promise, a lot of new attitudes for the blog, because it is my project and my outlet to express my sense of fashion, being from the mid west it’s hard to find people here that share my love of fashion and my like of clothing, plus life has been crazy! I hope you can understand my time away from the blog, but it feels great to be back. I hope you are here to stay with me-

To the Future,