Monday, July 18, 2011

Just Breathe

So the crazy has begun. We move in less than a week and it's really starting to hit me. The apartment is in shambles, my hands and feet seem perpetually dirty, and I wish I could just take the next month off of work! [Breathe, Jessica.]

Cream cardiwrap - Maurices / Grey and metallic ruffle top - New York & Co. / Dark skinnies - Gap

But alas, I cannot. I should not, anyway. I can, at the very least, take time for a mango smoothie with the ever sweet Tania, to commiserate over the evils of packing and moving, and to say fond farewells. We even did a little photo shoot of each other, and though my pics of her survived, I was trying so hard to be funny feeling so awkward making so many faces and talking too much that none of the ones she so graciously took of me are suitable for the interwebs. Not even for the sake of good humor! Uffda. (Tania, I promise you this is NOT the fault of the operator!!!) I totally got a few fabulous photography location tips, though... Tania, you're a lovely soul and I'm so glad to have been able to get to know the smart, thoughtful, and luminous girl behind the blog. =)

Handbag - Urban Outfitters / Brown cut-out wedges - LOFT

As for the outfit, a little grey and cream and cuffed skinnies never hurt anyone, even if this was my third attempt at an outfit for the day. Yeah, remember that thing I said about planning all my outfits until the move? FAIL. I'm back on track though, and - oddly enough - I'd rather NOT take anymore time off so I can wear fun outfits to work! Will I have the wherewithall to blog, THAT is the question! =)

Earrings - Maurices (?) / Ring - Banana Republic

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Sweater Weather

You know how, after days of 100 degree temperatures and high humidity that finally drops to a mild low 80s, you think it's okay to wear long sleeves again? Yep, that's what guided my wardrobe choices today. The weather is absolutely blissful, I'm thrilled by this never-worn remix, and I'm in one helluva good mood.

Pink sweater - Banana Republic / Floral tunic - Banana Republic / Olive skirt - Lane Bryant / Belt  - Banana Republic

This outfit just kinda fell together. The top/tunic is actually quite long, hitting at least mid-thigh, so I thought it best to tuck it in (which then also required a belt). Since I had already decided I could wear long sleeves today, I grabbed this thin pink sweater that paired perfectly with the print in the top.  I loved the idea of wearing these pretty florals with olive green, so I went straight to this oft-worn casual pencil skirt. I can't wait for the wardrobe options for this baby come fall!

Handbag - Tano "Minilisa" in Blue Marine / Sandals - Payless

We're moving next weekend. EEKS! We've been chipping away at packing already for the past couple weeks weeks, so we're doing okay. But it does complicate getting dressed everyday when half my clothes are packed up. So, I spent some time last night putting together outfits (including this one) through next weekend so 1) I don't have to think about it anymore and 2) I can pack the rest! The amount of stress that planning ahead takes off of me is astonishing. You'd think I'd do it more often.

Ring - TJ Maxx / Earrings - The Limited / Necklace - local boutique

All this is to say, too, that I won't be blogging much the last week of July and maybe even the first week of August. If I am not able to get a few outfit shots in (because I'll be in cut-offs and sweaty tees), I MAY try to take a few snapshots of the new place! In the meantime, though, I'm looking forward to the outfits I've created by, once again, putting together pieces I've never thought to combine before. I love how this blog stretches my styling creativity - and not my bank account! =)

Especially when I need to spend money on a new living room...

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


I've never thought to wear these pieces together before. Huh. The orange top I've had for a few years but I've only worn it once or twice, and not yet on this blog. I don't really have a good explanation for that... Now that I'm looking at it in pictures, I think it could be fabulous with a pencil skirt for a funky, casual look. (DUH!!)

Jacket - LOFT / Printed top - Lane Bryant / White pants (cuffed) - New York & Co. / Wedges - LOFT

The white bottoms are pants I just cuffed cuz they weren't quite long enough for heels but too long for flats. When life gives you lemons, eh? Plus I just think cuffing them makes for a better casual look overall, even if they do make my legs look a little shorter than they are. On the other hand, they show off these ankles of mine that I've really come to love. And the blue nylon jacket? This baby's become a versatile little topper for many an outfit.

I guess it's the blue and orange part, though. My school colors are blue and orange and, though they are naturally complementary colors (saith the color wheel), I don't like wearing the combination lest I be mistaken for a superfan. But this is doable, methinks. Besides, it's the off-season.

Ring - Banana Republic / Earrings - LOFT

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Pile It On

I actually had a hard time with the Yellow Everybody Everywear challenge today. It seems I only have yellow sweaters or yellow tees. Nothing in between. I had one outfit all picked out - lots of color and interesting textures with an teal embellished tank, yellow sweater and white bermuda shorts. Well, I'm glad I tried it on last night because, thanks to the too-long tank, the too-short sweater, and the winged pockets of the shorts, the proportions were terribly off. Plus, I knew the sweater was going to be a bad idea with the hot and humid weather we're having. So I ditched it all and went back to the drawing board, looking to my casual yellow tees to help round out this challenge instead.

Yellow tee - Gap / Navy trouser pants - LOFT / Yellow belt - The Limited / Camel peep-toes  - Banana Republic

Yellow | Everybody, Everywear

I figured I couldn't go wrong with a yellow boat neck tee, but I wanted to dress it up, so I pulled these navy trouser pants. First pants all summer, I should mention. Still not terribly interesting, even though the proportions were much better (and a much more "professional" outfit than I've donned all summer), but what's a girl to do? Pile on all the yellow accessories I could stomach? Yep! Hey, we're celebrating yellow today. The varying shades of yellow in the accessories keep them one degree from overkill... Maybe?  =)

Earrings - The Limited / Necklace - Urban Outfitters / Yellow topaz ring - Banana Republic (eBayed)

Monday, July 11, 2011

Summer Haze

Today is such a hot, humid day that not only did my sunglasses immediately fog up when I steeped outside this morning (!!!), but that my camera lens fogged up too! I kinda like the effect though...

Printed maxi dress - Lane Bryant (Spring '10) / Instant Sleeves in black - LucieLu /
Mirror sandals (covered by dress)  - Payless

I'm rather impressed that I managed to look so nice for regular old Monday. Even my dental hygienist said so! (I guess it wasn't a regular old Monday after all - it was Dentist Day! Made exclamation-point-worthy by the fact that it was a good check-up, of course. My gums still hurt, though...)

I don't wear this maxi dress very often - it has always felt just a smidge too dressy for a casual workday (something that I NEVER used to consider, incidentally), but not really appropriate for a dressy day, either. And its halter top doesn't always suit me either. But yet again, my LucieLu Instant Sleeves save the day! Wearing my usual shrugs or jackets with this dress always seemed so bulky thanks to how high the neckline is, and they always covered up that wonderfully wide waistband that drew good attention to my waist. So I certainly appreciate the better proportions that the Instant Sleeves allows. On the other hand, I'm rather loving my shoulders in this picture below. And since the BF happens to go nuts over my shoulders, I guess this picture's for him.  =)

I don't do too much with accessories when I wear this dress, once again because of its high neckline. But, I always grab these earrings since they seem to have been pulled right out of the print of the dress.

Ring - TJ Maxx / Earrings - Lane Bryant

Friday, July 8, 2011

Orange You Glad

I know, I know... this title has cropped up on about a zillion other blogs over the past few weeks. Well, given my own color combo and the apparent expressions of glee in my face, I couldn't resist. =)

Today I had to dress for a casual outside work event. The sartorial dilemma of that kinda makes my head spin. No heels, no fussy accessories, few (if any) layers (it's not a scorcher today, but still pleasantly warm), and something I can feel comfortable in sitting, standing or running around (on grass, pavement, etc.) all evening. So, I thought I'd build my outfit around these thin, silky cuffed cargo crops and a pair of sandals. After a few unsuccessful attempts of putting together something for my top half, and hankering for something (yet again) in the orange family, I pulled out this embellished tee. It's colorful and requires no additional accessories, thanks to the embellishment! I wanted another layer, though, so thinking back to this variation, I pulled out this sheer, short-sleeved cream-colored cardiwarp. What dilemma?? =)

Top - LOFT / Cardiwrap - Maurices / Cargo crops - Lane Bryant /
Sandals - Nine West (via / Handbag - Urban Outfitters

Last time I wore this top it made me want a creamsicle. This time...well, it still makes me want a creamsicle....

Ring - Banana Republic / Earrings - LOFT

Thursday, July 7, 2011


First off, I want to thank everyone for their thoughtful comments yesterday. Not only were they encouraging, supportive, and kind, but they were incredibly insightful, giving me ways to (re)think about my body and health. Weight, body image and self-esteem are always emotional issues, and though I always don't often delve into them on my blog, I'm so grateful that, when I do, I have such great readers to turn to. So, thanks. =)

Olive jacket - LOFT / Striped tee - Urban Outfitters / Signature Fit Twill ankle pants - Talbots /
Black belt - LOFT / Shoes - Payless / Handbag - Urban Outfitters

As for the outfit, I really did have to work up some confidence to break out these pants today. Of course, this outfit is most certainly inspired by Kendi's always surprising incorporation of her salmon crops, and particularly this outfit (I even got the shoes!), which made me seriously consider them myself. I mean, how can you go wrong with the combination of salmon and olive?? (Did someone say pimento olives?) So when Talbots boasted $25 pants a couple weeks ago (and this particular style is currently still around $25), I took the plunge. Once they arrived and I had a chance to try them on, I was hesitant that my thighs I could pull them off. But, after strutting around the apartment in the entire outfit for a while, I decided that the bigger picture really could win out.

Necklace - Banana Republic / Ring - Limited / Earrings - Maurices

I don't know if I'll wear them often (I mean, I really don't have Kendi's remixing skillz), and I'm not convinced ankle pants are the best look for me, but I was proud of myself for stepping outside of my neutral-colored-bottoms box and, more importantly, be just a little less self-conscious of the parts of my body I don't always love.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Bermuda's Triangle

I don't know what I'd do without accessories. In light of my recent quandary regarding summer dressing (one many of you told me you share), I've come to realize that accessories are the best, easiest and sometimes most surprising way to add interest to an outfit. Whether a belt (my personal fave, and a definite workhorse in my wardrobe), shoes or jewelry, you can make what might be a simple outfit just a little more sophisticated. And when the temps are too high to think about much of anything at all, sometimes that's all anyone could ask for!

Purple mesh double layer top - The Limited / Beige bermuda shorts - Lane Bryant / Animal print belt - Lane Bryant Outlet / Sandals - Payless / Handbag - Urban Outfitters

Today was my first day back to work after a blissfully long five day holiday weekend. I've been pretty stressed out from our upcoming move, too, not to mention my second-week weigh-in at Weight Watchers, so I really, especially, desperately needed something easy to wear today. I went for my comfortable bermuda shorts (my ideal length, by the way), but I've never had much success dressing these babies up. I pulled out this shirt, thinking back to a similar (but considerably dressier) outfit I wore a few moons ago, and decided I would go again for the belt - one with a pattern or texture. Animal print? Perfect. Elevated casual, here I come!

I didn't want to go too crazy with jewelry - something simple and on the small end of the spectrum. I've been wearing this BR charm necklace quite a bit precisely for that reason, so I didn't hesitate to go for it again.

Earrings,  ring & necklace - Banana Republic

How did the weigh-in go, you might wonder? Not great, but I've become somewhat numb to my super slow progress. What really took the cake (no pun intended) is that, thanks to PMS, the dread of going back to work, and other tetchy things, I got completely choked up to the point of tears while talking about my history of poor body image in the meeting. Awesome. I don't usually put myself out there like that - I feel much too vulnerable and assume I must be boring the pants out of everyone anyway. Well, that's the point about those meetings, isn't it? You aren't alone... I still feel a little muddled by the whole morning, and though encouraging words underlined the importance of baby steps when it comes to weight loss and lifestyle changes, I confess I'm not exactly confident in that fact. (It's my third time around.) And then of course I stumble upon Sal's post from today about happiness and love of self, and I again get teary-eyed and even confused. My question is and always remains... If I love my body as it is, then what motivation will I have to lose the weight I need to fit into my favorite pencil skirts again truly be healthier? It's a catch 22 that I continually find myself caught in. I don't have a good answer.

But maybe you do?

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Instead of Red

I don't have too much red in my wardrobe. It's just not one of those colors that works well with my rosy-pale complexion. Aside from a red pencil skirt (which I must admit I did think about wearing for a few seconds), one dressy red necklace, and the mandatory pair of red heels, I was at a loss for (casual) patriotic attire. Nope, not even a red belt! I actually used to have one red-white-blue pattered halter top from the LOFT that I would wear just for the Fourth. After a few years of that, though (and starting a blog that makes me seriously examine the contents of my closet), I realized that having a top that I would only wear one day of the year was kind of ridiculous, and I gave it away.

Striped shirt - The Limited / Denim skirt - Lane Bryant / Hot pink braided belt - Talbots (via TJ Maxx) /
Handbag - Urban Outfitters / Gold sandals - Moda Spana (via

So I decided to think outside of the color box just a bit this year, choosing to swap hot pink accessories for red, and further defying laws of nature by wearing gold instead of silver. Sure, I might have been a tad overdressed for sitting on lawn chairs chowing down a cheeseburger and fruit pizza (I make a damn good one), but I felt victorious over my wardrobe handicap. Shoot, I might even wear this again not during the holiday. And isn't that point, anyway? =)

Hope everyone had a fabulous holiday weekend!

Congrats again to Tiffany for winning my LucieLu Instant Sleeves Giveaway! Thanks to everyone who entered, and thanks for reading!

LucieLu Instant Sleeves Winner!

Time to announce the winner of my LucieLu Instant Sleeves Giveway!

Congratulations to Tiffany of The Clothed Commuter!! I know you're on vacation, Tiffany, but email me to claim your prize! =)

Check back later for my outfit post from the holiday!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Don't Forget!

A HUGE thank you and welcome to all my new readers! I'm so glad you're here. =) I just wanted to remind everyone that today is the last day to enter my LucieLu Instant Sleeves Giveaway, so be sure you've entered! Remember, you need to post one comment for each entry to be eligible for the giveaway! Feel free to email me if you have any problems or questions.

I'll be announcing the winner, who will be randomly selected via the True Random Number Generator, on Tuesday, July 5 - after the holiday. =) I figure that since everyone will be out barbecuing and enjoying the fireworks tomorrow (including me!) no one will even be on the Internets! =)

Good luck to everyone that enters, and thanks again for your support!

Friday, July 1, 2011


I'm feeling spectacularly girly in this outfit. All that smocking and puckering makes me look act feel like I should be on my way to kindergarten...

But, I'd been itching to wear this pretty (and ├╝ber comfortable) coral summer dress again (the last time I wore it was actually in my first outfit post!), and I wanted to try styling it with something other than my potentially ubiquitous denim jacket. Spurred on by Fashion for Giant's love of coral and turquoise, one I heartily share, and repeating my own practice of wearing a colorful tee under a strapless dress, I dug through my collection of tees in search of one in turquoise. And of course I had one. =)

Dress - Lane Bryant / Tee - LOFT / Belt - The Limited /
Handbag - Urban Outfitters / Shoes - Moda Spana (via

I added the turquoise belt to give the color more purpose in the outfit as whole, then topped it off with gold and smokey quartz jewelry and gold sandals. (And my grey handbag that I can't seem to put down, regardless of whether it works with the outfit or not...=7)

And I got a hair cut! I told you this would be my next 'do! Well, it almost is. My hair 1) is not dark brown and 2) doesn't want to flip so perfectly unevenly. But it's close. =)

Ring - Banana Republic (eBayed) / Necklace -Banana Republic

Did you enter my LucieLu Instant Sleeves Giveaway yet? Four chances to win! And I've expanded the main entry rule, too, so be sure to check it out!