Wining Wife™

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Sofilantjes Otium Sweater Pattern Test

Hah! I've beat the storm! And I have this super-cute top to prove it.

Hah! I’ve beat the storm! And I have this super-cute top to prove it.

Let me start off by saying that I LOVE this shirt. (Doesn’t it look like I love it? I’m sorry for the indoor pictures, but I figured that with all the rain and wind we’ve had, that it was indoor or nothin’).

Okay, now that we have that out of the way. I received the pattern for free in exchange for honest feedback when testing the pattern out.  I made the pattern in size XXL – I went by my bust measurements (it comes in XS-XXXL, so it’s great for us curvy gals). I was a little nervous that it would be too small or pull too much in the hips or waist, but I was pleasantly surprised with the outcome. I made no adjustments to the pattern.

Awesome fabric!

Awesome fabric!

The Fabric

Let’s talk a minute about the fabric. You see this gorgeous sheer fabric with silver stripes running through it? It’s a stretch/novelty knit fabric. I honestly don’t know if you can get it anywhere anymore.  You know why? I found it at a thrift store for $3.00. There were 3 yards of it, and it’s 58″ wide. I have leftovers from it, and I’ll be using the leftovers to make Vogue 1376.

The plain black fabric on the neckband, waistband and sleeves was a pain in the butt to work with. It wanted to curl as I’d sew, and it wanted to get trapped in my sewing machine’s feed. That was pretty annoying – but the fabric has a LOT of stretch, and it feels really nice. This fabric was not a thrift store find. Nope, we went out and bought it – both for the contrast parts of this shirt and because I want to make those leggings in Vogue 1376.

The Pattern

Sofilantjes Patterns Otium Sweater

There are three (well, six if you count long sleeve or short sleeves) options for making the sweater – a diagonal pocket, a low back with bow, and a standard with a high round neck. The sizing is generous, and can fit anyone from a 31 inch bust to a 52 inch bust with minimal alterations. Since I’m 48-44-53 (yup, baby got back) I was advised to make the XXL.

What I love about this pattern (one of the many things, really) is that when you print it, you can choose exactly which pages to print, because the instructions tell you what you will need for the view you wish to make. It seems like a small thing, but it’s really not. I love saving paper and printer ink. The pages lined up really well, and, well, it was really easy to work with.

Sewing the pattern

Guess what!?! I remembered to pre-wash my fabric! YAY! Other than some frustration with the black super 4-way stretchy fabric, this pattern sewed up really quickly. I made French seams since I was working with a sheer fabric. The only road block I had when making it was the bow (as in how to pin it to sew it in place), but that got straightened out pretty quickly.

In all, I was really happy with how this one turned out. I liked it so much, I went ahead and purchased the girl’s version for sizes 12months-14 years. I see a few more of these in my future.

Right now, in conjunction with the pattern’s release, the women’s pattern is $7, the children’s pattern is $6.50, and the bundle of the two is $13. They can be purchased here. (This is not an affiliate link).

Here are more pictures of the top.

Book Review: Flirting With Fire by Tara Quan & Giftcard Giveaway

*My apologies, this was supposed to go up at 8:00 this morning. Instead, I fell asleep (and was out)after several days with severe sleep deprivation due to meeting the needs of a very cute, but not sleepy almost-one-year-old Baby Girl who finally decided that sleep was needed. :) But here’s my review!*



Who doesn’t like Halloween? It’s certainly my favorite holiday. So, when I was offered the opportunity to check out a Halloween-themed book, I thought “Sure, why not?” (Of course if you know me, and you’ve seen my living room, you know that there aren’t many books I won’t jump at the chance to review.) If you enjoy sexy stories – and stories that get the fires running, this is one that you should check out. It’s fun, it’s enticing, it’s a delight. Tara Quan always does a great job of breathing life to her characters, and you feel like you’re right there with them as the story goes on. In fact, when the story ends, you almost miss the characters (especially, if like I did, you sit down and read the story in a single sitting). I’m looking forward to the next book in the series.



Title: Flirting With Fire

Series: A Witch’s Night Out #1

Author: Tara Quan

Publication Date: October 24, 2014

Genre: Paranormal Romance


Apprentice witch Catalina Gato is prohibited from assuming her human form in front of her new employer without his express permission. Since he doesn’t know he’s a warlock, he can’t give it, leaving her in a familiar’s limbo. To make matters worse, she’s barred from leaving his house, and her attempts to enlighten him of his true nature results in burnt notes, charred walls, and exploding laptops.

On All Hallows’ Eve, she gets one night of freedom. Deciding some no-strings-attached sex might take the edge off the intense attraction she feels for her clueless boss, she signs up for Madame Eve’s service. When she meets her masked mystery date at the Castillo Capital, she realizes she might have gotten much more than she bargained for.

After being gifted a one-night stand from his annoying best friend, attorney Leo Difuoco reluctantly ventures to the Castillo Capital to celebrate Halloween. When he meets his oddly familiar green-eyed date in a Cat Woman costume, flames literally ignite, sparks magically fly, and life as he knows it changes forever.




 Buy Links

Amazon   Barnes & Noble   Goodreads


Layla Tarar  Photo by Melissa GoldenAuthor Bio

Globetrotter, lover of languages, and romance author, Tara Quan has an addiction for crafting tales with a pinch of spice and a smidgen of kink. Inspired by her travels, Tara enjoys tossing her kick-ass heroines and alpha males into exotic contemporary locales, paranormal worlds, and post-apocalyptic futures. Armed with magical powers or conventional weapons, her characters are guaranteed a suspenseful and sensual ride, as well as their own happily ever after.

 Social Media Links

Website  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Goodreads  |  Pinterest  |  Google+ | Amazon


Win a $15 Amazon or Barnes and Noble gift card.

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Pre-Order Promo for Siren by Jennifer Melzer

By Jennifer Melzer
Publication Date: January 5, 2015
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Fantasy
On the night Siren Talbot’s boyfriend was going to propose he disappeared without a trace.She loved Carver. She was willing to wait, but three years is a long time, and the new guy in the apartment next door isn’t about to walk away from a damsel in distress.

Sweet, charming, Patrick’s always there when she needs him, and Carver? Well… he’s still gone. It’s been three years, and her whole family says it’s time to move on. Patrick’s a good man, he loves her and he’s promised her the happily ever after she deserves.

She’s willing to overlook his secretive nature and the occasional flare of his prickly temper until a single discovery untangles the carefully spun threads of her new husband’s secret life.

Patrick knows exactly what happened to Carver.

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Ashley’s Dream by B.R. Kingsolver Book Blast & Giveaway

Will she follow her heart and choose love, or follow her life-long dream?
Publication Date: TBD
Genre: New Adult Romance

Ashley isn’t looking for love. She has a dream to travel the world, and getting tied down by a man doesn’t fit into her plans. Relationships always get so complicated, and men always lie. It’s better just to have some fun and no one gets hurt.When she graduates college and the job offers don’t come rolling in, her life continues as usual: working as the manager of a college town bar and hanging out with her friends. Then a tragic event pushes her to take a chance on romance.

But things are not always as they seem, and Ashley’s white knight has secrets. Her friends try to tell her something isn’t right, but her common sense is smothered by his kisses and soft endearments.

When the job offer she has always wanted arrives, will she follow her heart and choose love, or follow her life-long dream?

This book is part of the Kindle Scout program, where you get to nominate the books you want to see published! Go vote and help see this book get published!

Kindle Scout

I grew up in Santa Fe, New Mexico, among writers, artists and weird Hispanic and Native American myths and folklore. I’ve lived all over the U.S. and earned a living doing everything from making silver and turquoise jewelry, to construction to computers. I currently split my time between Baltimore and Albuquerque.

I made silver and turquoise jewelry for almost a decade, ended up in nursing school, then took a master’s in business. Along the way I worked in construction, as a newspaper editor, and somehow found a career working with computers.
Website  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Goodreads


Lingerie Shopping Gift Guide from Hips & Curves

plus size christmas lingerie

Be prepared to hand the computer over to your husband (or boyfriend, or girlfriend – your partner).  Be sure the kids are in bed or otherwise occupied. Here are some great finds from Hips & Curves, a lingerie shop that carries cute & sexy things in plus sizes.

*This post contains affiliate links. Should you purchase from one of these links, I will receive compensation. This list is sponsored and compiled by the folks at Hips & Curves. I have included some photos, others that are a bit more risqué have been omitted. Also, be aware that this is not safe for work, nor does inclusion on the list entail my own endorsement. However, if you’re looking for a good way to switch things up with your partner, there are some ideas – including those relating to a particular novel involving the word “Grey” in the title.*

A “Haute” Holiday. Christmas Lingerie

The weather outside might be frightful, but private time can be delightful! Ignore the cold weather outside while heating things up with our “Haute” lingerie selections this holiday season.

Plus Size Sexy Santa Tie Cup Babydoll with Marabou Trim

Sexy Santa Tie Cup Babydoll with Marabou Trim – $39.95


Naughty Mrs. Clause Open Cup Bustier – $47.95

Charmeuse and Lace Tie Back Babydoll – $37.95

Plus Size Satin Jacquard Corset, Red

Red and Black Satin Corset – $69.90

Plus Size Appliqued Lace and Satin Corset, Red and Black

Appliqued Lace and Satin Red and Black Corset – $85.90



Those 8 shinning lights won’t be the only thing heating up the night. Shine bright this festival of lights and let your partner discover their own holiday miracle when you’re wearing one of the fabulous holiday styles below.

Lace Overlay Garter Chemise – $39.95

Plus Size Sinfully Sweet Georgette Babydoll, Mulberry

Sinfully Sweet Georgette Lace Babydoll – $39.95


Babydoll Peignoir Set – $49.90 – $55.90

Bella Taffeta Corset – $49.95

Bronwyn Steel Boned Corset – $149.95


For Mrs. “Claws”

Sometimes Mrs. Claus likes to go from cookies to a bit more crazy. Have some fun this holiday by turning Mrs. Claus into Mrs. Claws.


Studded Pyramid Ring Choker with O Ring – $34.95

Red Heart Nippies – $15.00

18″ Riding Crop – $24.95

Burlesque Boa – $29.95

3 Piece Body Jewel Set (Metallic/Blue) – $16.95

50 Shades of Fun

With the movie coming out, why not start Valentine’s early with a 50 Shades of White Christmas kick off. Here are 5 products to help turn your Silver Bells a bit more “Grey”.

Fifty Shades of Grey™ All Mine Deluxe Blindfold – $24.99

Fifty Shades of Grey™ Soft Limits Deluxe Restraint Wrist Tie – $22.99

Fifty Shades of Grey Trilogy – $45.95

Fifty Shades of Grey™ You Are All Mine Metal Handcuffs – $19.99


Fifty Shades of Grey™ Twitchy Palm Spanking Paddle – $29.99

Fifty Shades of Grey™ Hard Limits Universal Restraint Kit – $59.99



Whether its cooking, eating, cleaning, going to friend’s for dinner, singing or hosting family, sometimes you only want “me time”. When you’re ready to relax and let your holiday go, try some of the following super-comfy and relaxing sleepwear. You deserve it!  

Plus Size Super Soft and Comfy Halter Top with Lace Trim, Heather Grey

Soft and Comfy Halter Top with Lace Trim – $39.95

Soft and Comfy Nightshirt – $37.95

Soft & Comfy Tank Dress with Lace Back – $32.95

Super Soft and Comfy Lace Trim Robe – $59.95

Soft & Comfy Robe – $49.95

 So there you have it! Have fun and be safe this holiday season!

DSC_0321Hey early birds…you’re about to get a great deal on holiday cards.

From 7:00am to 11:00am ET (4:00 am to 8:00am PT), Tiny Prints (affiliate link, if you make a purchase, I will receive compensation) is making their already awesome Cyber Week deal even more awesomer.

Through the end of today, you can get 40% off all holiday cards using the code CYBER40. If your order is more than $49, use that and stack the code FREESHIP49 for free shipping if your order is more than $49.

But, if you are up early enough, add the code FLASH1204 and you’ll save an extra 10% on your order. That’s a total of almost 50% off holiday cards. 

So check it out and remember to use all 3 codes to save nearly 50%!

I don’t know about you, but I love a good deal – especially during gift giving season. I figured I would share with you some of the best deals that have been coming across my computer screen. The links below are affiliate links, and clicking on them and then making a purchase means I will receive compensation. Here come the deals:



Thursday, December 4th

Friday, December 5th

Gold Medal Wine Club’s Deals

If you’ve been thinking of joining a wine club or giving the gift of wine, there are some great deals going on right now with Gold Medal Wine Club. From their email:

1. Five Wine Gifts in One! On sale now for $59.95 – Order today! Two bottles of Gold Series California award-winning wines, (1 red, 1 white) with a trendy BNY black neoprene wine bottle tote, a sleek Cherry wood handle corkscrew, and a polished Cherry wood bottle stopper. Free personalized Gift Card with wines wrapped in reusable organza wine gift bags tied with bows. Informative newsletters all arrive in our artist-commissioned Wine Country Gift Box.

2. Gift the gift of Cabernet and Chocolate! Shop today $59.95!Two bottles of award-winning (4 silver medals) of Cache Cabernet Sauvignon and Jessica Foster Confections. Eight delectable hand-made gourmet truffles pairs perfectly with the two award-winning, boutique Cabernet Sauvignon wines. Free personalized Gift Card with wines wrapped in reusable organza wine gift bags with bows plus informative newsletters too! All will arrive in our artist-commissioned Wine Country Gift Box. This is one of our top sellers.

3. Shop for the perfect Holiday Wine Tasting Kit and Host the Perfect Holiday Party $85.95! This Wine Tasting Party Kit includes: • Four different bottles of our award-winning Gold Series wines (two red and two white varietals). • An 80 page illustrated book that explains all the details of hosting your own wine tasting • 4 Tasting Notepads • 4 Cloth Wine Bags • 4 Tags to label the Wine bottles when you are doing your tasting • 1 Wine and Cheese Wheel that helps you pair delicious wine and cheese combinations • 1 Wine Aroma Wheel that will help you identify and describe wines in a more detailed way

4. Give a gift that keeps on giving! Save up to 40% off your wine gift today! Shop today!

Half-Moon Outfitters


Meanwhile, over at Half-Moon Outfitters, if you purchase one pair of hiking socks, you can get one free – a great thing for those with hikers’ stockings to fill. Here’s the link for that: Buy one get one free Wigwam comfort hiker socks! Buy one pair for $16.95 and get the second pair free while supplies last! Must enter code “wigwam” at checkout for discount to apply. Free shipping on all orders over $49! Coupon Code: wigwam

Tiny Prints

Still need Christmas cards that don’t suck?

Then you need to check out Tiny Prints, who are having their best sale of the entire year…but it ends today!

These aren’t cards you can buy at the store. These are aren’t generic or boring. You can completely personalize the cards, upload your own photos, change the font and text, and make the cards uniquely YOU.

The clock is ticking…it only takes a few minutes to create and send the perfect cards. Just follow these simple steps:

1. Choose from 100’s of Tiny Prints Holiday / Christmas card designs
2. Add your photos and tweak the text to your liking. 
3. Use the promo code CYBER40 to save 40% on your cards.

It’s not too late to send amazing cards at an amazing price. Head on over to Tiny Prints now

Maker Shed

For those who enjoy making things to give, or for those needing ideas, the gift guide at Maker Shed is useful, and free shipping is always nice when buying online. Holiday Gift Guide

They also have a make-your-own electric guitar kit for sale and 30%-70% off all of their pre-Christmas clearance items.

Always Get the Right Size with Rent the Runway

Have you ever ordered a gorgeous outfit online and it didn’t fit? We’ve been there, too, and it’s a total bummer! You already know about the great designer looks you can find at Rent The Runway and their fabulous prices. But one of Rent the Runway’s best kept secrets is that you can also select an additional backup size to be shipped for free. So you don’t have to worry about ordering the wrong size, especially if you’re in a time crunch.
I think that about covers it for now. What deals have you seen floating around online?


I just have to share, as I am in love with these stockings. Over at My Cents of Style, for today only, you can get a Christmas stocking and free stocking stuffer for $8.95. (This is an affiliate link, should you click on it and make a purchase, I will receive compensation). I’m planning on making my family’s stockings this year – but man, these are so cute, it’s tempting to get one!

Shipping on these is free (And aren’t those earrings are cute? They’re free with your purchase.)


Gift Ideas for Wine Geeks

It’s the season for giving gifts. I’m going to start running gift idea posts – because, well you can never have too many people thinking about what to get you – er, I mean their loved ones, right? Wine geeks and aficionados can be notoriously difficult to buy for. They seem to have everything (even if that’s not true), and they seem to be very picky about wine. And wine is the logical choice, right?

Not necessarily. There are, however, some fun things you can get your beloved wine geek that he or she will love. Here are some ideas! (And yes, these are affiliate links, so if you click on them, and purchase something, I will receive compensation. However, these are things that have been on my radar for a while now, and this isn’t just some sponsor-put together list.)

Without further ado:

A Reel Work of Art Wine Rack – $69.99

from: ModCloth

This “Reel Work of Art Wine Rack” from ModCloth is so much fun. I could see having this in our family room, atop our video shelf, stocked with drinking wines that go well with a great Friday night at home, feet up on the coffee table, and movie on the screen. It’s just so much fun!
Birds of a Feather  Wine Stoppers Assorted Styles design by imm Living

Birds of a Feather Wine Stoppers – $22.00
from: Burke Decor

 No, not all wine drinkers drink the entire bottle in one setting. Wine stoppers do come in quite handy – especially if the cork breaks when you’re opening a bottle. It does happen! These cute bird wine stoppers could be great little gifts for your wine drinking friends.

The Wine Tasting Party Kit – $19.99

This would be a lot of fun. Wine geeks get lonely too, and how much fun would it be to have a wine tasting party? I mean, wine was meant to be shared with friends and loved ones. This party kit would be a great gift to receive!

White Stone Coaster Set – Wine is Life – $11.99


These coasters are a lot of fun. Thirsty Coasters has other great wine coasters as well that are more serious, but c’mon, we can’t all take ourselves seriously all the time. Help your gift recipient protect his or her wood items.


Wine Secrets: Advice from Winemakers, Sommeliers and Connoisseurs – $19.99
From: Mental Floss Store

No matter how much you know about wine, there’s always more one can learn. This handy book can help your gift recipient to do that. Give the gift that gives more information.

Wine Bottle Tea Towels – $22.00

from: One Kings Lane

Everyone needs towels with which to wipe up spills. Why not give these cute tea towels to your favorite wining friend? You never know how they’ll come in handy – and they feature every wining person’s favorite image.





First Ever Vacuum Decanter – $79.99
from: The Sharper Image

This is very very cool. Wining husband and I have a decanter and aerator, and sometimes it would be nice to be able to decant a wine – and then save some for later. This vacuum decanter allows you to do that. Decant your wine – and enjoy just a glass or two with dinner.

XL Giant Wine Glass – $13.95


This glass can hold a bottle of wine. Consider this for your favorite wining parent. After a long day of work and looking after kids, what better way to relax than with an extra-large glass of wine? Of course, I mean this as a joke. Still, what a great gift to elicit some giggles!

Wine Barrel Ornament

Wine Barrel Ornament – $15.00
from: Sur La Table

Year after year, the recipient of this gift will think of you – for better or for worse – as he or she adds this ornament to the Christmas tree. I think it’s really pretty and would be a great addition to the tree!

Wine Glass Entertaining Set, Set of 12

Wine Glass Entertaining Set – $24.99
from: Cost Plus World Market

Chances are, if the gift recipient throws parties or entertains a bunch, he or she could use a set of wine glasses for that purpose. While many wine geeks will drink wine out of specialized glassware when enjoying wine at home, a large set of less expensive glassware may be a welcome addition – that way, if something breaks, it’s no big deal. 

What things have you had your eye on?




*This post is sponsored by Tiny Prints. If you click on the links, I will receive compensation. If you’ve been thinking about ordering customized holiday cards, though, this is a great deal. I ordered a magnet from them a while back – it was outstanding quality.*

Attention Night Owls!

From 10pm to midnight Pacific time tonight (that’s 1am to 3am ET), Tiny Prints is sweetening their already sweet Cyber Week deal.

Any other time of day today or tomorrow, you can get 40% off all holiday cards using the code CYBER40. So, if you’re not a night owl, use that and throw on the code FREESHIP49 for free shipping if your order is more than $49.

But, if you are up late tonight, add the code FLASH1202 and you’ll save an extra 10% on your order. That’s a total of nearly 50% off holiday cards. 

So check it out and remember to use all 3 codes to save nearly 50%!

Tiny Prints Cyber Monday

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