I Love My Denim Skirt

(Outfit Notes: Turquoise Sequined Tee-Kohl’s/Necklace-Avon/Denim Skirt-Target/Belt-Target/Sandals-Target)

Yes, the necklace is from Avon. I had a co-worker who sold it years ago. Oddly enough, I think this necklace, which is mostly plastic and cost me only a few dollars, is the one piece of jewelry I get the most compliments on.

I threw this outfit on yesterday, after waking from an afternoon nap. (Sometimes I still subscribe to “Sleep when the baby sleeps.”, even though he’s 2.) We were invited out for frozen custard, and this denim skirt, which I have owned for years, has become my go-to piece for when I have no time to worry about what to wear. Seriously, it goes with everything!


What is your go-to wardrobe staple?


Play Clothes

(Outfit Notes: Top-Too old to remember and I cut the tag out/Necklace-Mexicali Blues/Jeans-Old Navy/Bracelet-Gift/Sandals-Target)

As a Mumma, many days it is impractical for me to wear a skirt, heels, or anything that is in any way restrictive. However, I don’t always want to hang out in sweatpants and a baggy t-shirt. (Though sometimes I do this before nap time.)

So, I need clothes I can play in. I need to be able to crawl on the floor and roar like a dinosaur, to have a tickle fight, to sit on the floor next to the potty and read stories, and to go to the playground. Outfits like this one allow me to do all of these things comfortably, while still expressing my sense of style.

These sandals are my most recent style related purchase. I have been eyeballing them for weeks, but kept waiting and waiting. I wanted something I liked a bit more than flip-flops, and that could be either dressed up or down, and at only $15 these were the perfect pick for me.

I also really love this funky clay bead necklace I bought as part of a 30th birthday outfit gift to myself. The bracelet is made of dried coffee beans, and was a gift from my friend Abby, who knows of my coffee obsession addiction. Adding some fun jewelry to a basic t-shirt and jeans makes me feel a bit more like myself.

What do you wear to play in?

Julie Inspired Style

Julie & Julia

My husband Jeramy and I recently watched the movie Julie & Julia
together. It was my third time seeing the film, and his first. Every time I watch it, I find myself not only culinarily inspired (and hungry!), but I also love all of the costuming of the two main characters, Julia Child and Julie Powell.

Meryl Streep as Julia wears clothes iconic of the time period during which she was studying and teaching in France: the late 1940’s into the 1950’s. Long skirts and dresses, high-heeled pumps, collared button down blouses, fantastic a-line party dresses, and of course, pearls.

Amy Adams as Julie has a style that is a mix of modern and vintage-inspired. She wears a lot of funky brooches, belted skirts, feminine blouses, and her own faux pearls.

Since I have recently discovered my own love for belting, all of the outfits with high-waisted silhouettes worn in the film had me shouting “See! Look they are doing it!” at Jeramy, who thinks my belting choices are weird. I tell him that he just doesn’t understand vintage-inspired style.

I thought it would be a kind of fun little project to re-create some of my favorite outfits from films or other media, and to try to do so cheaply, as a way of demonstrating how to use inspiration from external sources for one’s own style. Also, to show that it doesn’t require a lot of cash to build an outfit, if you plan a little.

So, here is my first re-creation. An outfit of Julie’s from a scene where she is being scolded by her boss. When I first saw this, I wasn’t sure how I felt about the tucked-in turtleneck with the high-waist of the skirt, however, I have since come to love it, and “potato sack skirts” are now one of my favorite styles.

Here is Amy Adams (aka Julie):

And here is my re-creation:
The entire outfit comes to a total of only $43.34! Granted, I don’t include hose or shoes here, because I could not see them, but if I were to wear this I would add a pair of dark tights and some black pumps. Also, since it is currently summer, turtlenecks are hard to come by. This one from Target was in the clearance section, and therefore subject to availability in stores, but come fall this problem would be easily resolved, though possibly at a bit more cost. (Although, you could probably thrift one any time of year for about the same price as this one on clearance!)

Stay tuned for more inspired styles in the future!

Embracing Belting

(Outfit Notes: Necklace-A gift/Sweater-Target/Floral Tank-Sears/Skirt-Target/Belt-Target/Wallet-Target/Peep Toe Brown Flats-Mudd Brand)

I have come to realize that I love belting! I love the silhouette it creates, and the way it accentuates my curves. Belting also helps define the waist, and since my middle section is often the part of me that I have to work the hardest to feel confident about, belting gives me a confidence boost.

I also love this little grey sweater. I have worn it over long-sleeved tees in the winter, over plain t-shirts, and over tanks like I did here. Until this outfit though, I had not thought to wear a belt over it, and I am glad I did. When I bought the sweater I knew I thought it was pretty, but I never realized how a short-sleeved sweater can be an incredibly versatile staple in a wardrobe.

I felt really confident on this day, and some of that was definitely thanks to what I was wearing. Not that I believe self-esteem should be tied to clothes, because it shouldn’t. However, being a person who likes to express herself creatively, putting together clothes in a fun way gives me a feeling of satisfaction, and allows me to show a bit of my personality to others.

Do The Twist

(Outfit Notes: Necklace-JC Penney/Tee-GAP/Dress-Kohl’s/Brown Peep Toes-Mudd Brand)

For the first half of my day yesterday, I wore jeans and a tee-shirt. I basically rolled out of bed, flat-ironed the cowlicks out of my hair and threw clothes on, because Simon slept in later than usual and I had less time for getting ready. However, I had an evening shift at the library where I work, and we are not allowed to wear jeans there so I had to change.

I decided to wear a casual, purple floral dress that I bought for summer as though it were a skirt, by throwing a basic cotton tee over it. When I layered the tee over the dress though, which has a slight empire waist, there were odd vertical linear bumps going down my belly from the way the dress bunched under the shirt. I was about to go try to find a different top, when I remembered this post, written by Kayley of the blog Sidewalk Ready, and the way she tied her basic tee. I tried it, and I liked it. (I tied mine off to the side instead of centered like she did.) It raised the waistline and added enough texture to make the tee work over the dress.

I had never tried tying a tee like this before, and my husband thought I was a bit odd until I showed him both Kayley’s outfit and another one online.

The point of this post is that I like perusing style blogs for inspiration, because they can give me ideas for ways to mix up items that I already own in new and more interesting ways. Seeing someone else do it first sometimes gives me greater confidence to try something new on my own. Since I no longer purchase women’s magazines (and haven’t for years), I find that reading blogs written by real women out there who enjoy experimenting with style is my new source for ideas. Almost everyone owns at least one basic tee shirt…next time you wear one, maybe you should try it in a different way?

*Note-For an interesting take on not buying women’s magazines and why, read this.

Thrifted Tropics

(Outfit Notes: Green Top-Thrifted/Skirt-Thrifted/Earrings-Old Navy/Flip Flops-Old Navy)

As a (mostly) stay-at-home Mumma, relying on one person’s income while also trying to save for a house, I definitely rely on a well-defined budget. Jeramy and I each take $15 dollars a week to buy ourselves something, whether it be lunch with a friend, a new CD, or some Starbucks. In my case, I often browse the clearance racks for items to fill in my wardrobe. I recently also decided that going thrift shopping could become very useful to me, allowing me to find things without spending too much.

The other day I popped into Goodwill and ended up finding two skirts and two tops, for just over $15. That makes two entire outfits minus shoes. Not all thrifting trips are successful, sometimes I find absolutely nothing, but that day I was quite pleased.

The outfit here is one of the shirts I got that day, as well as one of the skirts. The top is GAP brand, so new it probably cost at least $20. (This is based on looking at other embellished tees on their website.) Green is my favorite color, and I loved the little sparkly embellishment on the pocket. It was an added bonus that it coordinated so well with this tropical print skirt. I have been keeping my eye out for a button-front skirt for a while now, and was excited when this one fit me. The print and the colors are perfect for this time of year, going into summer.

Since today was Father’s Day, and we were just taking it easy together as a family and doing a little shopping (for a new shower curtain liner, how unexciting), I thought flip-flops would keep me from feeling over-dressed. They are also comfortable for hanging around in.

I am really happy about this thrift shop success. Do you ever go thrifting? Find anything good lately?

In Praise Of Bangs And Tights

(Outfit Notes: Earrings-handmade by me/Beaded Tee-Target/Denim Skirt-Target/Red Tights-Kohl’s/Black Flats-Target)

I have two style-related things that I feel are worth mentioning today.

First, is that I got a haircut, and my bangs are back! I always like my hair with bangs, and even though I did have fun with the side swept look for a while, I missed them. Admittedly, the side bangs are a lot easier then full ones when you don’t have time. I had taken to pushing them back with a barrette and calling my hair done in the morning. Bangs take a little more time in the getting ready department, but I like them a lot and am willing to fire up the straightener in the morning to have them.

There is nothing quite like walking out of the salon after having my hair professionally cut and styled to make me feel a little more pep. It just gives you a little boost, you know? Although, I do tend to prefer my hair the second day after a cut, when it has calmed down a bit and I can fiddle with it just the way I like. But my very fine textured hair never has as much body and life in it as it does when my hairstylist has had her hands on it. She defies gravity.

Second, I want to sing the praises of tights again. Not only did my red tights add pizzazz to an otherwise plain outfit today, but I went for a walk, pushing Simon in the stroller and was able to wear a skirt for this without getting that horrible chafe between the legs that can come with skirt wearing. I love skirts. They might not always be the most practical choice, but this simple addition of tights today kept my skirt practical for me, even when physically exerting myself. I wore my comfy black flats with them and my feet stayed happy too.

Now, I would not advocate tights for a hike, or a speed-walk, or even laps around the track. They won’t be great anymore when the summer heat fully arrives. And if we went to the playground I would definitely prefer shorts or pants. But for a stroll with a friend, it was my perfect solution. And yes, I played with Legos down on the floor with Simon in them too. I chased him across the house to put his pajamas on for bedtime in them. I even picked up the house in them and I was never once uncomfortable. In fact, the only impact the daily occurrences of motherhood had on my outfit choice today was when Simon wiped toothpaste all over my black shirt.

Tights as practical motherhood wear? I say yes.