Tuesday, January 28, 2014

dotty, big cardigans, and a few dots

winter outfit
cardigan: victoria's secret (exactly)
shirt: day birger et mikkelsen via thredup (join here)
pants: j.crew factory (without dots)
wedges: elie tahari (similar)
necklace: h&m (similar)

[three things]
1. to get through what is turning out to be an absolutely terrible winter, i ordered two big cozy sweaters that have a teeny tiny bit of cashmere.  (i wore this cardigan's cowlneck cousin last week on da blog.)  it seems like more and more sweaters are made of acrylic and start piling as soon as they take their first swim in the washer, but these cotton-based ones are holding up really well.

2. i may have sized up is this cardigan and therefore ended up with built-in mittens!

3. i had vastly understimated that versatility of a basic black top.  i used to have one from a giveaway i hosted, (seen here in this post) but after a series of unfortunate events, it left my closet.  (okay, it just went through the dryer and shrunk to child size.)  after a "high to low" search on thredup turned up this tunic, i have fixed the problem and have now started wearing black way more than i used to.  oh well.  it's winter, easy to match, and i can just pretend that it's because i want to look serious and artsy.  anyway, since i happen to blogging on tuesday, let's break this down:

creative: how is that i am strong advocate for bright colors for interiors, yet seem to wear neutrals more and more?  at least i wore a turquoise necklace!
young: there are dots on my pants.  i also buy lots of toddler-size leggings for my nieces a similar print.  maybe that's a little too young.
professional: patent wedges for the win.




Monday, January 20, 2014

dotty, wintertime, and antlers

january slouchies
big sweater: victoria's secret (exactly)
pants: wayf (exactly)
flats: forever21 (exactly)

[three things]
1. oh, hi!  it's been awhile!  blah, blah, blah, too many projects at work, too much snow shoveling, too many seasons of justified to watch, too many pop-up bowls of popcorn to eat, blah, blah, blah.

2. my new wardrobe plan is to wear big, comfy sweaters until spring comes along.  i wore legit dress pants (these guys) to work one day last week for a day of meetings with consultants and got multiple questions about why i was dressed up.  don't worry, i'll dress like a grown-up again once hibernation season is over.

3. i think i have amassed a big enough comfy sweater collection that i can wear a different one every day of the week.  midwestern winter success!

january slouchies

january slouchies

january slouchies

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

we search. we find. we shopstyle.


i'm a big fan of shopstyle's affiliate links, so when they asked me to be part of their new ad campaign, i was definitely game!  i've been using their search tool more and more for my online shopping lately.  being able to sort by price across multiple sites is pretty awesome.  see that gray sweater up there on the left?  (i'm wearing it in this post too.)  i saw it on the joie website when i was searching for this winter's wear-everyda-sweater (last year's slouchy cashmere has seen better days) and really liked the triangular hem, but the price tag was a bit steep compared to last year's default sweater.  a quick shopstyle search turned up that it was on sale at piperlime for less than half of retail.  bam!

anyway, i created a board based on the usual suspects around here - neutrals!

background from top left:
joie assymetrical gray sweater
ebay'd crazy sparkley necklace
marc jacobs target collab clutch
j.crew wool baseball cap
everlane silk blouse
theory suit jacket
silence& print pants
banana republic tweed skirt

on me:
gap moto jacket
everlane printed tee c/o shopstyle
mossimo leopard pencil skirt
opi "lincoln park after dark" nail polish

i was compensated by shopstyle for my collaboration on this project.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

dotty, dots, and spots

january outfit
cardigan: thrifted (similar)
crochet lace top: gift (similar)
jeans: gap (without spots)
loafers: candie's (similar)

[three things]
1. it is REALLY cold outside.  hibernation is seeming more and more like a viable option.

2. i took a snow day yesterday and worked from home, but i put on non-jamas for a conference call in the afternoon.  this combination of comfy things seems like just the right amount of pattern+texture mixing for me.

3. i've been pretty unhappy with my indoor outfit photos lately (like these), so i picked a different spot and spent some extra time sliding bars around until my skin and the walls were accurately depicted.  i still like outdoor photos ten times more, but winter mcfreezingerson is going to be sticking around for awhile.

january outfit

january outfit

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

recap: 2013 closet rockstars

like everyone and their brother at this time of year, i've been thinking a lot about the ups and downs of the last year and strategizing about how to make 2014 my best year yet. while i've got heaps of personal and professional goals for the upcoming year, one of my style-related goals is to be happier with my clothing purchases and the state of my closet.

while i really enjoy having new things to wear, the reality is that almost all of the cheaper clothes i buy don't last very long. if only one in ten turns out to be a well-made, washable, non-stretch-out-able, then really i'm spending ten times the retail price for that one good one.  bah!  and really, when i clean out my closet and easily fill up a bag with thirty cheap pieces that didn't work out, it makes me feel foolish.  i've made feeble attempts to change my habits in the past that included limiting the number of pieces per month and setting an arbitrary budget.  the number thing lasted about two months and was problematic because some months i buy very little (like last august), but these months are sandwiched between months where i buy eeeeverything (like last july).  setting a budget apparently just encourages me to buy more cheaper things, since i don't want to spend my whole budget on one thing.  i need to make a permanent change in how i make my clothing purchases and curate my closet.

anyway, so here's my plan for 2014:
  • make another purge of my closet and be ruthless with things i've been holding onto for sentimental reasons or the i-might-wear-that-one-day excuse.  
  • box up my fancy office-only professional clothes for that wonderful day in march when i am no longer at a construction site all the time.*  
  • work through into mind's steps to define my signature look.  
  • make very specific lists of things i want to add to my closet.
  • focus on texture, pattern, and interesting details.  (rather than color since let's face the facts, i like me some neutrals.)
  • save up for some bigger wishlist purchases.  
  • stop buying cheap clothes cold turkey.  (this is gonna be difficult, but my closet will thank me eventually.)

*my job lately has pigeon-holed me into a very specific type of workfit that is not jeans, but can be worn with work boots...no dresses, no high-heel-length pants, nothing that i wouldn't want to get paint on, etc.  it's total lame sauce, but it's temporary.

i was originally going to just post my top six closet rockstars from 2013, but i got a bit distracted when i was cleaning out my closet this morning.  so yeah, here's my favorite pieces from the last year:

michael michael kors leather jacket

mossimo leopard pencil skirt
(the only cheap piece of clothing that made my top six)

rachel rachel roy white shirtdress

zara big stripe jacket

vince cashmere-blend slouchy sweater

theory crackle-print dress