Friday, January 31, 2014

Pinspired: gingham + fuchsia

When I came across this pin recently, I was immediately smitten with Lilly's coat. Rather than getting a case of the ""s, I thought about my closet and realized quickly that while I don't have a pink coat, I have a pink-ish blazer, along with everything else I would need to recreate the outfit.

On an unrelated note, I need a new challenge or theme for February. Any ideas?

Blazer: Gap [last seen here]
Gingham Shirt: Old Navy [similar, option]
Sweater: American Eagle (old, c/o Mom) [option]
Necklace: gift (c/o Mom-in-law) [option]
Pants: The Limited [exact]
Boots: Madden Girl (gift)

[Linking up with Heather for Pinned it and Did It]

Thursday, January 30, 2014

best month ever

At the end of December, I took a break from blogging so I could take some time to recharge my batteries and get a fresh perspective. Since then, I've been re-evaluating my values, and deliberating over what I want this blog to be. What I have come to realize is that I want to wear what makes me feel good, but I also want to feel good about what I wear. Since adopting this mindset, and committing to it, I have managed to go almost two months without buying anything for myself, with the exception of this top [EDIT] and blazer: 

1. The Limited Striped Mixed Media top: originally $40, on sale for $17. [returned]
2. Merona Women's Oxford Blazer: originally $35, on sale for $18.

= $17* $18
*top is in the mail, so if it doesn't work out, total will drop to $0.

This is the least I've spent in a long time, i.e., best month ever.

[Linking up with Fran for Budgeting Bloggers.]

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

trial and error

I think it's safe to say that my blog is, and has been, living up to its name; it certainly has been a journey in style for me over the past two years. I once thought putting a scarf over a longsleeve tee was stylish. Here I am now with a better sense for what I like and what my style is. That's not to say that I don't like to experiment every now and then. I've layered dresses over shirts before (here, here, here), but I've never layered a non-sleeveless dress over a shirt. I tried it today. What do you think? Does it work? Have you ever layered like this before?

Dress: The Limited [option, option]
Shirt: Eddie Bauer (c/o Mom) [similar]
Necklace: gift, c/o Mom-in-law [option]
Tights: Merona via Target [exact]
Boots: Dexter via Payless

Monday, January 27, 2014

vaguely familiar

I couldn't help but think after I got dressed this morning that I had already seen this outfit before. I scrolled through my Pinterest boards, and couldn't find anything. That's when I remembered this outfit and this outfit. Have you ever unknowingly repeated (or nearly replicated) an outfit?

Chambray: Old Navy [similar*]
*save 20% w/coupon code TAKE20
Cardigan: Banana Republic (c/o Mom) [option]
Necklace: gift (via Amazon) [almost exact]
Belt: The Limited [similar, more colors]
Pants: Apt. 9 via Kohl's [option]
Flats: via Payless [option, option]

Friday, January 24, 2014

black, white, cobalt

Any time I see Andi wear her striped skirt (like yesterday), I think to myself, "I really should wear my striped skirt more often." And that's exactly what I did today. I put together a few outfits last night revolving around this skirt, and only decided on this top and blazer this morning. There's just something about cobalt, black, and white that screamed "Friday" to me. Or maybe that was just my subconscious screaming "FRIDAY!!!" It's hard to tell sometimes.

Top: The Limited (c/o Mom) [last seen here]
Blazer: Forever 21 [similar]
Belt: The Limited [option]
Skirt: Old Navy [similarsimilar, similar, option]
Tights: via Target [exact]
Wedges: via Target [option]

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Pinspired: plaid + stripes

Was it just me, or was the return from winter break in grade school the time you got to see what everyone got for Christmas? My mom bought me this scarf the day after Christmas, and it's been in heavy rotation since. I know it looks like it's taking over me, but it's so soft, and so wonderful. When I saw this pin, I knew I would recreate it. I still don't really get mixing prints, but this works... right? [Linking up with Bri and Heather.]

(Men's) Sweater: Old Navy [option]
Vest: Old Navy [option, option]
Scarf: (c/o Mom) Gap [exact*]
*40% off w/coupon code DEALFORU
Jeans: The Limited [similar]
Boots: Candie's via Kohl's [exact]

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

cinderella blazer

After Black Friday I bought a light grey blazer from The Limited (no longer available online), almost identical to my oatmeal blazer. When I got home, I realized I would have preferred a darker grey. Last week I was in Target, and saw this blazer. I really liked the color, but was disappointed that it was only available in a 2 and 14. I decided to give it a shot anyway since it was on the clearance rack. Good thing I did, because I really had a Cinderella moment. It fit perfectly. It was amazing. After watching so much What Not To Wear over winter break, I realized how important fit is and how many clothes I've bought in the past few years that aren't perfect fits, let alone even good fits. Have you had any "perfect fit" moments lately?

Shirt: Gap (old, c/o Mom) [similar]
Blazer: Merona via Target [exact]
Necklace: ShyBoutique [almost exact]
Exact Stretch Pants: The Limited [exact]
Flats: Christian Siriano via Payless [option]

[Linking up with The Pleated Poppy]

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

what i wore over winter break

I rarely wear the exact same outfit twice on the blog, but anything is fair game on the weekends. On the weekends, I generally wear something I've already featured on the blog. Let's just say winter break was a very long extended weekend... because when I actually would leave the house, I would wear this outfit. Now that school is back in session, I guess I'll have to wear something else. At least until the weekend.

Sweater: via Kohl's [exact]
Chambray: Old Navy [exact]
Vest: J. Crew Factory [option]
Jeans: The Limited [similar]
Boots: Candie's via Kohl's [exact]

Monday, January 20, 2014

My Favorite Thirteen of 2013

Did you know that I like making lists? To-Do lists are my favorites, but favorite lists are up there, too. Here are (in no particular order) my favorite thirteen items I bought in 2013. [The idea for this list comes courtesy of Good Life.]

bear dress (via Anthropologie)
A dress with bears on it. Could you imagine anything more perfect for me? This is definitely my favorite purchase of 2013.

denim jacket (via Target)
I spent a couple months looking for the perfect denim jacket and ended up picking this one. While I'm not sure a denim jacket is a "must have", it was a good choice, and I'd recommend it to anyone.

floral dress (via Gap)
I originally went to Gap to look for this print in the shorts version, but when I saw this dress cost just as much as the shorts, I gave it a shot, and fell in love immediately.

giraffe sweater (via Banana Republic)
I love animals. And I loved seeing them on sweaters this year. Unfortunately, I didn't really like the ones I had seen, until this one came along. Giraffes are actually one of my top five favorite animals!

black vest (via Old Navy)
While this is just a plain and simple black vest, it has gotten a lot of wear already. I love the way it adds a little something extra to any outfit, and that I can just pop it on over a sweater or button up shirt.

herringbone vest (via J. Crew Factory)
While it's only made two appearances on the blog so far, I spent most of winter break in this vest (and this sweater). I've never been a fan of cold weather, but this vest helps me make it to spring.

red-orange coat (via The Limited)
I don't typically post photos of my coats, but I had to with this one because I paid less than $10 for it. I can't decide whether it's the price or it's being a go-to that makes it a favorite. Either way, it's a favorite!

neutral blazer (via The Limited)
Admittedly this was an impulse purchase, but it was definitely the best impulse purchase of 2013. It's stretchy and soft, and it is so versatile!

exact stretch pants (via The Limited)
I bought my first pair of Exact Stretch pants in 2011 for teaching. I recommend these for work, but they even work for casual wear. The constant wear (and a great sale) prompted me to pick up another pair.

striped skirt (via Old Navy)
While it may be a simple striped skirt, it can be paired in so many ways. The stretch just makes it that much better. If you don't already have a striped skirt, I think you should consider getting one!

 neon coral tee (via Gap)
Would you believe me if I told you I lived in this tee this summer? I originally bought it to qualify for free shipping, and when it arrived, I thought the color was ridiculous. Then I loved it. And wore it all summer.

black maxi skirt (via H&M)
When I wasn't wearing my neon coral tee this summer (see above), I was probably wearing my black maxi skirt. This was my go-to for running errands in the summer, paired with a tank or tee.

hi-lo dress (via The Limited)
I tried this dress on for fun when I saw it in the store, and I actually loved it. It made me feel amazing. I think when that happens, you have to buy it. And that's what I did.

I think my favorites can be summed up in three words: comfortable, versatile, and/or loooove it. Putting this post together gave me an opportunity to reflect on all of my 2013 purchases and recognize where I went wrong, but also take pride for where I went right. I can only hope that all the clothes I buy in 2014 will be contenders for the "favorites of '14" list! What items were your favorite purchases of last year?

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

re-evaluating values

I haven't been around much this holiday season, and I won't be around much until school resumes and I get settled in my new schedule and new work load. I am taking some time away from the blog and shopping to recharge my batteries. 

To be honest, I'm embarrassed by how much I purchased in 2013. It's really not about the money (okay, so it is-- when isn't it about the money?), as much as it is about giving in to temptation and the irreconcilable discontentment. I know I'm not perfect, and I don't intend to pretend like I am; I just want to live in a way that reflects my values. I do not value materialism or over-consumption, but my blog might suggest otherwise.

I am not going to even try to do a shopping ban, because that is setting myself up for failure and disappointment. What I am going to try to do is work to ensure that my actions reflect my values, and that I am - dare I say - true to who I am. 
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