3.04.2015

Spring inspiration

Yes, we are gearing up for a huge snowstorm tomorrow.
Yes, it's going to be a high of 24 tomorrow and a low of 2.

But I don't care, I've still got Spring on the mind! I can see the buds creeping out of the ends of the magnolia branches. I can see the little snowdrops and crocuses pushing their way up out of the soil. The sap is running, it's coming, it's coming.

So, as of late I've been having so much fun planning my spring capsule wardrobe. I've got a pin board for outfits and one for color palette inspiration. Let's take a look, shall we?

First of all, my color palette. Coming up with a color palette has been so helpful for me. It guides me when I'm shopping, it keeps my wardrobe cohesive, and it helps with versatility. This spring, I'm bringing back the navy, white and gray that I've been wearing all winter, but I'm also looking forward to throwing in some little pops of color. I'm thinking cranberry, or even an orange-y red, my favorite mustard yellow, and green. 



I figure that these colors will be mostly in the form of accessories, scarves, jewelry ect. My main colors will still be my good old navy, white and gray. But navy and green? Navy and red? Mustard and gray? So. Pretty.



Onto style...
First of all, I'm just crazy for midi skirts right now. This is the length I'll be rocking this season. 



I can't decide if I want a patterned one or a solid one. I've have found quite a few cute vintage ones on Etsy though! Here, here and here.

Ok, and let's talk shoes - I'm very excited to start wearing flats again. Either with boyfriend jeans, or tight cropped pants a la Audrey Hepburn.  


So many pretty shoes!!

I'm also thinking I might get some casual sneakers. I don't have any, and I'm liking the way they look either with a dress or skinny jeans. Right now, my favorite is the white converse look, but I'm not totally married to it. 




And finally, I'm really excited about prints this season. And for some reason, insect prints in particular. I already bought a really cute pair of pants from H&M that have moths all over them. And I found a pretty coral-colored blouse the other day at the thrift store which has little honey bees. These will both be in my spring capsule for sure. I need to be careful not to go overboard with the prints though. I do this, and then I end up with nothing but prints, and I can't mix and match!




So that's it for now. In a week I will be purging my closet, and pulling all of my spring and summer clothes out of storage. I'm pretty excited to see all the clothes that I forgot about from last year! I figure the only shopping I'll do is for a new skirt and some sneakers. I will definitely be posting about my process of shopping my storage and culling items from the winter. I seriously can't wait to put together a cheerful wardrobe for March, April and May!


2.27.2015

Friday book review (tearful edition): All the Light we Cannot See


Wow, this book. I'm not sure what to say about it that hasn't already been said, but I'll try. Have you ever had a book that you can't stop talking about? I'm sure my husband was getting sick of hearing me talk about this book. But it's the kind of book that gets into your head, that you want to discuss. 

About the plot, I was hesitant to read this book at first because it is about World War II. Not only do I generally dislike books about war, but especially about Nazi Germany. Everything about war just depresses the hell out of me. And I know that it was an incredibly important time period, but honestly I just feel like WWII has been wrung out, and done to death. 

But no, I was wrong. This author gives us an entirely fresh take on things. War as seen through the eyes of youth, and as experienced through someone who has no sight, a young French woman named Marie-Laure. To experience the sounds and smells of a bombing, and to think about the already terrifying experience of surviving a bombing, but now without sight, was just masterful. There were moments of pure, pure genius in this book. Points where I literally had to just put it down and take a deep breath. She's smart as a whip though, and so incredibly strong, and in the end it is her other senses that save her.

In addition to the point of view of the young blind woman in the book, we also get to experience the point of view of a poor German orphan named Werner, who becomes seduced by the possibility of a better life through the Reich. I could see in a flash how easy it would be to buy into their stories when you have nothing, and they are promising so much.  My heart just broke over and over again at reading about this incredibly gifted and sensitive boy who becomes a cog in the machine of war.

Doerr has woven a tapestry that slowly brings these two characters together for a brief and gorgeous moment in time. That moment encapsulates the innocence of youth, and the innocence that was stolen from them so beautifully. I'm literally tearing up right now just thinking about it. 

Ugh, just read this book. It's incredible. But beware of reading it in public, unless you don't mind crying in front of strangers.

2.24.2015

February round-up

We've had a week of snow days here in Kentucky, so my outfits lately have been mostly yoga pants and hoodies :) We have been curled up by the woodstove when we're not venturing out to walk to the library like I was here



As far as my winter capsule, I am still enjoying putting together outfits! One item I wanted to talk about today was my mustard yellow cords. These have been such a favorite. At the beginning planning stages of my winter capsule, I knew I wanted to include at least one item that was mustard yellow. I'll admit it, I have a thing for 70s colors; avocado green, burnt orange... you get the idea. 

But, there was one problem, if I wear yellow, I look like I have the flu. Any shade, it just does not agree with my complexion. The solution? Either a yellow skirt or pants! Then I can still have my pop of color while remaining healthy-looking. These were my inspiration, from the blog et pourquoi pas Coline - I don't speak French but I LOVE her style!


I found the perfect pair, after much searching. They are by Levis, not too canary, a little stretch, good length. I just love the way that Levis fit! 

And they pair so well with so many things. Since most of my tops are fairly neutral looking, I can wear them with just about anything for a little color. 


The absolutely perfect Breton Stripe sweater by LL Bean, and navy flats


Navy waffle-knit sweater - I wore this with some slouchy boots. The kitten was being very helpful

And here they are actually on me with a vintage cardigan and some black booties. 


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So, is anyone else thinking of the Spring Capsule yet? I decided to go ahead and put mine together over spring break in March. I'm just so ready! I've got a pinboard with some inspiration. I'm thinking lots of prints, skirts and dresses. So ready for winter to be over!

2.09.2015

The beauty of layers


One of the best things about winter is layering, cozy textures overlapping colors and patterns. 
But one of the most frustrating things about winter is layers too. Sometimes I feel suffocated by them all. And I am still learning the art of layers. 

This post is meant to be a meditation of sorts on the concept of layers. 
Rather than feature specific outfits, I wanted to highlight the layers themselves. 
Showcase them as snapshots of layers I've been wearing lately. 

Hopefully these photos evoke a kind of warmth and cozy-ness, and show the interesting textiles and patterns that I've been wearing lately. 

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Happy February everyone!
Stay warm.

1.27.2015

Get dressed for work - winter capsule

Outfit posts!

I'm still working on photography, these pictures were all taken with a timer. Not my best work for sure. I can see why so many bloggers opt instead to just photograph a whole bunch of outfits in one go. So they are a bit blurry and strange, but you can get the basic idea. I'll work on it.

Anyway, disclaimers aside, this is primarily my work wardrobe. A lot of skinnies and button downs.
I am realizing that I never posted my blazers, of which I have two, a black and a grey.

Gray blazer - Black skinnes - white button down - simple 



Black skinnies again - this is a navy blue button-down


Same outfit with a blazer - it's one of my great joys that you can throw a blazer over almost anything
and make it look professional 

Black T-shirt dress over tights and with a brown cardigan. Wow, I look mad in this photo!





I'm going somewhere! Same outfit but with my big swing coat and work tote



Here's me looking very mysterious. I adore this grey wool trench coat - this was my birthday present to myself

So, that's it for now. I'm still figuring out how to take good photos of myself and my clothes. If anyone has any pointers (that include an iphone) I'd love to hear them!!


I'm planning to an entire post on the awesome that is the black t-shirt dress.

What sorts of things would you like to see? Do tell.

1.25.2015

Thrifting and the capsule wardrobe

I’m definitely not as “adventurous” as I could be with my clothes. One part of my wardrobe that is evidence of this is my skirts. I just love the idea of wearing skirts, but then when I get dressed in the morning I grab pants instead. Recently, I have made a deal with myself, each week I will wear a skirt at least once, and a dress at least once. I have also found some incredibly comfy tights recently, and that is helping a lot

In putting together a capsule wardrobe, I have been forced to think of my clothes as outfits, instead of single items. This has truly been helpful for me. In the past, I would have so many "statement pieces", and no basics. I bought things for the print or the fabric, but didn't think about how I would actually wear them, or what I would wear them with.  

When I put together my fall wardrobe, I realized that I was lacking a simple, black skirt. I decided on a skater skirt, because I think they are pretty cute right now, and it works with my figure. They are easy to dress up or down, it's a really versatile item. It goes with practically everything!







Here's mine that I got at Banana Republic. For me, someone who tends to get most things second hand, it was a big purchase. But it was so worth it! For years I have been missing this crucial piece of just a simple black skirt.



My other skirt is a tweed pencil skirt. It doesn't look like much hanging here in this picture, but I'm going to try to post outfits, and this is a really cute skirt. Again, it goes with most things in my wardrobe, but this is very much a work piece. I would probably never wear this anywhere but work.


And finally, I have my interesting skirt. This is a secondhand skirt that is corduroy. It's a retro kind of burnt orange color, and it's about mid-length. It's a great winter skirt because it's pretty heavy. I found this at a hipster flea market last year and bought it along with some black cowboy boots. 

Which brings me to an important point. 
 
In each of my capsules so far, I've included what I'm calling "wardrobe misfires". In my mind, these are items of clothing that I love, but never wear. Rather than be overwhelmed with a bunch of them, I have just picked two or three to include in each capsule. For my fall capsule my misfires included a couple of funky dresses that I loved in theory but for some reason, never wore. One of them I actually started wearing, partly because I made myself, but also partly because having a small number of items in your closet makes these stand out items a little more fun. BUT, the other dress I realized I was just never going to wear, and I ended up taking it to a clothing swap. I was sad, because it was so cute, and I bought it new. But it was just this 50s style rockabilly dress that just isn't me. That's become a great part of this whole experience too, figuring out what I like to see on other people, versus what I like to see on myself!

I love vintage, and thrift stores. My style does tend to be pretty classic, but I like to throw in some funky bits and bobs to make it my own and I like to have at least one thing on that is unique. 

This capsule wardrobe has challenged me, it's easy at thrift stores to grab stuff willy-nilly since it's so cheap. Over the years I've end up with a lot of funky stuff, but not may basics to tie them together. You just can't wear head to toe vintage, or at least I can't anyway. But now I'm starting to see how to incorporate these items in. By including just one or two of these really funky pieces I can more easily come up with multiple outfits, and decide if I like them in real life, or just in theory.

These days if I do go to the thrift store (which I am really trying to limit) I ask myself, "if this was full price, would I buy it?" If the answer is no, and 9 times out of 10 it is, then I don't get it. Then I also challenge myself to come up with a few outfits with that item.

1.22.2015

Blouses and shirts and tops...oh my!

I wanted to post my complete set of button down shirts since yesterday came up a little short.
I love a good button-down. It looks professional. And I love to roll up my sleeves. You can pair it with a sweater for a preppie look, a vest for some academic style, or a blazer for maximum business.










(Pictures taken from Pinterest by the way)

So, it's a versatile piece. And versatility is the name of the game with capsules.

First up, I've got a standard white version from Banana Republic, which is awesome. Heavy linen, fitted, basically perfect.




I've got a polka dot version, for a little sass




And I've got a silkier, green one for some sophistication




Recently though, I've been really getting into printed tops. I've picked up a couple for the old capsule wardrobe at my very favorite thrift store.

A navy dot




And the most adorable little bird print evah




Check out the close-up




So cute!!!

And finally, a gorgeous Anthro find for my birthday. I love, love, love this shirt.




So those are my six snazzy mostly-for-work-but-sometimes-for-fun shirts!

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