Wednesday, November 26, 2014

November Budget

My goal this month was to spend as little as possible on myself. Spoiler alert: that didn't happen.

1. Lou & Grey Zipside Tunic (via Loft): originally $60, on promotion for $30
2. Oversized Plaid Scarf (via Target): originally $17 - 15% cartwheel coupon = $15
3. Altuzarra x Target orchid sweatshirt: originally $30, on clearance for $9
4. LOFT Modern Straight Leg jeans: originally $80, on promotion for $40
5. Gap Outlet coat [seen here]: originally $80, on promotion for $65
6. SO Crochet Tunic Sweater (via Kohl's) - gift c/o Mom
7. SO Moccasins (via Kohl's) - gift c/o Mom
8. Simply Vera Vera Wang Leggings (via Kohl's) gift c/o Mom

= $159


But at the same time, this was a month of staples: a coat, a pair of jeans. a sweater (that I've worn four times in the past four weeks!). I highly recommend the tunic sweater from Kohl's, especially if you didn't get the Lou & Grey sweater before it sold out. It's so comfortable and works great layered or on its own. And it's half the cost!

I'm excited about the leggings and the moccasins because those are two items that were in desperate need of replacing; both had holes in them and were in terrible condition. I've been looking for a new, reliable pair of jeans for months, and I'm happy that I finally found a pair that fit my needs and wants.

In previous budget posts, I've compiled a short list of things I have my eye on. This month, I've put together a list of temptations I'm going to try to avoid:

- Black booties. As long as there are no sales, I'll be able to avoid buying them.
- Cognac boots. Hopefully Santa will leave these under my tree for me.
- Quilted sneakers. I am getting so much use out of my leopard slip ons, I can see myself wearing a black version just as much.
- This triangle sweatshirt. I was -this- close to buying the J. Crew version last year.

Next month, I'll add up each month's budget to see how I did for the year. Stay tuned! 

How did you do this month? Do you see the holiday season as a time to take advantage of the great deals? What do you have your eye on lately?

[Linking up with Fran for Budgeting Bloggers]

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

welcome back, fall

I've been hunting for the perfect military jacket for well over a year now. After ordering this one from Old Navy and being sorely disappointed with how short it was on me, I began to rethink the need for a military jacket. I live in a climate where you can wear a light jacket maybe two weeks out of the year. Otherwise, it's no jacket or a warm one. Then of course a few days after this thought, I'm at the outlet mall, and I stumble across an olive green coat. It was like a military jacket and warmness got together and made a baby. Just for me.

I bought it a few weeks ago and have been debating whether to keep or not since. Pro: it's warm. Con: it was $60. Pro: it has a hood. Con: it was $60. Pro: I don't have a casual cold weather jacket. Con: it was $60. (For $60, I could get these booties I've had my eye on. Or half of this pair. Or this bucket bag. *cough*someone get me a bucket bag for Christmas?*cough*)

I figured if I wear it four times a week for the next four months, I'll get the cost-per-wear down to a dollar. That's gotta count for something, right? How do you make decisions about functional clothing pieces?

[I'm also regularly late to every appointment and scheduled event, so it should be no surprise that I'm linking up with Bri for Third Thursday Threads: Fall Footwear almost a week late. Better late than never!]

Coat: Gap Outlet | option
Sweater: Lou & Grey via LOFT | exact
Scarf: Merona via Target | exact
Leggings (c/o Mom): via Kohl's | exact
Boots (gift): Madden Girl | option - under $30!

{Linking up with LauraLauren, Shanna, Liz, and Lindsey}

Monday, November 24, 2014

with a little help

Sometimes I know that I want to wear one particular piece, but then I don't know where to go from there. I knew I wanted to wear my blue dress but didn't know whether to wear a shirt under it or a cardigan over it (or both?!). So I recruited my husband to help me. He picked out the blazer (which I immediately approved of, since I had considered this combination some time ago). Then I asked him the harder question: scarf or necklace? "I know how much you love your scarves, so .... [looks through my scarves]... this one." 

I'm incredibly content with how this turned out. Maybe I should call on him more often.

Dress: J. Crew Factory | very similaroption
Blazer: via Target | similar, option
Scarf: The Limited | option
Tights: via Target
Wedges: via Target | option
[Linking up here]

Saturday, November 22, 2014


All week long, I've been challenging myself to participate in both blazer week (co-hosted by Andi and Danielle) and the Pantone inspired color challenge (co-hosted by Marissa and Heidi). For the last look of the week, I've thrown one more challenge upon myself: a Pinspired look. I've been meaning to do one for some time, and after I saw Danielle wear her tan blazer, I thought to myself, "I really should quit neglecting my tan/oatmeal blazer." And so I did. And I managed to incorporate cognac into the outfit (cognac wedges) to make a three-in-one. Or three-for-one.

And yes, I also caved in and got the highly coveted over-sized scarf from Target. It was just staring at me, and Cartwheel had a 15% off coupon for winter accessories. In my defense, I really wanted this one, but it sold out before there was a deal on shipping. Have you jumped on the oversized scarf bandwagon? 

Blazer: The Limited | option
Top (c/o Mom): Ralph Lauren | option
Scarf: via Target | exact
Pants: The Limited | option
Wedges: via Payless | option

[Linking up with Molly and Laura]

Friday, November 21, 2014

what to wear: black friday shopping

You won't find me standing in line for a flat screen TV on Black Friday Eve. You won't find me bumping elbows with women in the mall, fighting over a sweater or a pair of boots. You may however find me rifling through the bargain bins at Wal-Mart hunting for my favorite DVDs on Black Friday morning. There are few things better than going home with a handful of DVDs for less than $10. It's my thing.

It's also my thing to be prepared for any situation, and that includes dressing for the occasion. This holiday season, Misty from Balancing a Hectic World and I are teaming up for a four post series featuring different looks for different holiday events.

We're kicking off the series with our Black Friday looks. Be sure to stop by Misty's blog, and check out what she's wearing for Black Friday!

I get that not everyone shops on Black Friday. This year, my husband and I will be spending the day with his parents. If you're spending the day with family, you might want to opt for something slightly nicer. If that's the case, here's what I'd wear:

Jacket: Gianni Bini via Dillard's | similar, love this option
Top: The Limited | last worn
Pants(old, c/o Mom) Daisy Fuentes via Kohl's
Heels: Apt. 9 via Kohl's | option

But for those of you who are planning on bumping elbows with others and hunting for the best deals, I'd opt for something slightly more relaxed.

Sweater: Old Navy | option
Vest: Old Navy | nearly identical
Pashmina (gift) | very similar
Jeans: LOFT | exact
Sneakers: via Target | exact

How to dress for Black Friday shopping:
- Wear something bright. Inevitably you will get separated from your group. Make it easy to find one another without having to resort to using your phones.
- Comfy shoes! If you're planning on trying on shoes, skip anything with zips and laces and just go for slip ons. (Obviously I recommend these slip on sneakers.)
- Manueverability is key. No need for a giant purse today. On days like this, I prefer a wristlet like this.
- Leave your coat in your car. With all the extra bodies in the stores, you won't get cold. A quilted vest can provide extra warmth just in case you're worried.

What will you be wearing on Black Friday? Are you spending time with family or will you be shopping? Or both?! 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

mauve mist

I hate to be one of those girls that complains about the weather, but it's cramping my style. I'm too much of a wimp to brave freezing temps to take outfit photos outside. It's just one more reason the weather needs to remember what fall feels like. (Other reasons include that I haven't gotten a chance to wear my ankle pants enough, I don't want to wear boots for the next four months, and the cold is so cold.)

Anyway, today marks day 4 of the Pantone inspired color challenge and blazer week. [Linking up here and here, respectively.] Mauve mist is the color of the day, which pretty much comes off as sad pastel purple. By sad I mean dull, muted, ... I guess the there's no positive way to spin 'sad'. I have a lot of purple in my closet, but the cold pushed me to my mauvey misty scarf.

I was planning on wearing my black blazer for blazer week. I only got through going over the agenda for class that day before overheating and needing to take off the blazer. 

Blouse: The Limited | option
Scarf (c/o grandparents) | option
Skirt (c/o in-laws): The Limited | option
Belt (c/o in-laws): The Limited | option
Wedges: via Target | option

[also linking up here]

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

day 3 fail

It's day 3 of both blazer week and the Pantone inspired color challenge, and I'm already slacking. When I took these pictures, I left my blazer inside and by the time I realized it, I was too lazy to go back outside to take more pictures. Also, I didn't feel like wearing my cobalt cardigan or scarf so I left the royal blue to my necklace. 

While I may be slacking a lot when it comes to my blog, I'm making a lot of progress with my research! Hooray! Have you been slacking on anything lately? Or making progress with any projects?

Sweater: Loft* | exact
*60% off with code FLASH
Chambray: Old Navy | option
Necklace: J. Crew Factory | option
Pants: The Limited | exact
Boots: via Payless | option

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

two birds: cypress blazer

I have mixed feelings about the expression "to kill two birds with one stone". Yes, it's a great way of communicating efficiency, but on the other hand, I feel bad for the birds. What does this expression have to do with my post? As I mentioned yesterday, it's blazer week and Pantone week. Today's color is cypress. As soon I saw the color, I thought of my safari jacket. While by name it's a jacket, I'm not really sure that it can't count as a blazer. How would you explain the difference between a jacket and a blazer? 

Jacket: The Limited | similar
Top: The Limited | similar, similar
Jeans: Charlotte Russe - old
Boots: Not Rated via DSW | fun option

I'm linking up with Andi and Danielle for Blazer Week, and with Heidi and Marissa for the Pantone Inspired Color Challenge. Be sure to join in on the fun! 

[also linking up with Laura]

Monday, November 17, 2014

Altuzarra for Target

I'm not one to go crazy over Target designer collaborations. I don't show up the morning of the release, nor do I even bother paying attention to the items until they hit the clearance. In fact, I think the only collab item I have is the Phillip Lim tote - which I got for purely functional reasons, i.e., to carry my stuff for school. I've used it every day for the past year, so it's safe to say I've gotten my money's worth. Anyway, I adored the orchid sweatshirt when I first saw it, but I wasn't going to pay $30 for it. I wasn't going to pay $15 for it either. But $9? $9 I can handle.

I am, however, one to go crazy over challenges and theme weeks. Today kicks off both blazer week (co-hosted by Andi and Danielle) and the fall Pantone inspired color challenge (co-hosted by Heidi and Marissa). I am going to try all week to incorporate a blazer into my outfit and the Pantone color of the day. Today's color is sangria.

Blazer: Forever 21 | nearly identical
Orchid Sweatshirt: Altuzarra x Target | exact
Skirt: Merona via Target | option, option
Tights: via Target | option
Wedges: via Target | option

[Linking up for Let it Shine, Celebrate Southern, Pumps and Push UpsBlazer Week, and Pantone Week]

Friday, November 14, 2014

winter pastels

It's official. Winter is here. Snow is on the way. I did what any reasonable person would do when it's 30 degrees outside, and I layered up! It happened to be really sunny when I wore this outfit, so I opted for pastels. Truth be told, this outfit came to me in a vision as I started to fall asleep. Zzzz... Mint gingham and pastel purple... zzz... 

I don't often share personal stories simply because nothing interesting happens in my life. Proof: On the day I wore this outfit, I had a coupon to take $10 off a $10 purchase at JCPenney that expired that day. I dragged my husband along to keep me company. He didn't want or need anything, so he followed me around as I tried to find something for $10-15. I hoped to find a replacement pair of moccasins. I bought these  (in tan) from Target in 2009 and as of last year, there are a few holes in the soles. The only ones at JCP were $30. Pass. I really liked this sweater, but they only had XLs in stock. (It's okay, I found a better version at Kohl's and also had a $10 off coupon.) My husband claims we spent over an hour in the store. It felt like 15 minutes to me.

TL;DR: we left JCPenney with a new pillow and a tiny ramekin. For $1.04.

Do you feel compelled to buy something when you get 'take $10 off $10 purchase' mailers?

Sweater: Old Navy | same style
Gingham Shirt: Gap | similar
Necklace: via groopdealz | almost identical
Skinny Jeans: The Limited | similar
Boots: Candie's via Kohl's | exact

Thursday, November 13, 2014

bear legs

This may be the last time that you see my bare legs this year. I don't know about you, but there's only one thing that comes to mind when I think of bare legs, and that's bear legs. Bear legs make me think of bears. Long story short: bear dress.

I experimented pairing this dress with a few different cardigans, and in the process, dismissed pairing it with most regular length cardigans. I preferred the longer lengths of the boyfriend cardigans, and ended up choosing this one because purple goes well with the navy bears and pink-ish background of the dress itself. I had a hard time settling on shoes, but finally opted for the booties because I'm on a mission to wear them more often.

Dress: Anthropologie | save, spend, splurge
Cardigan: Forever 21 | option, option
Necklace: Forever 21 | option
Booties: Candie's via Kohl's | option

[Linking up with White Coat Wardrobe and Happiness at Mid-Life]

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

fall colors

I'm not an expert on the matter, but if I were to pick the colors of fall, I'd pick grey, burgundy, camel, and maybe blush. (Honorable mention to mustard and leopard, but they're always contestants.) 

This is one of my weekend "get together for coffee - but end up going home with things I don't need but really want like this sweatshirt (that finally made it to the clearance rack!!)" outfits. I purposely chose the pieces of this outfit because they are my chosen fall colors, and if the Weather Channel is correct, it's time to say goodbye to fall and hello to winter.

Tee: Gap | exact
Scarf: Forever 21 | exact
Cardigan (c/o Mom) : LOFT | similar
Jeans: LOFT | exact
Sneakers: via Target | exact

[Linking up with Shopping My Closet]

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

zig zag

I wore this outfit on Friday, but didn't manage to get photos of it. While I don't mind passing over weekend outfits, I can't bring myself to do that for week day outfits. So before heading to campus Monday morning, I put this outfit back on, took some photos, and then changed into Monday's outfit. Totally normal, right? Yeah.

I think this top is one of my most neglected pieces. I really do like it, but I can never decide what kind of necklace to wear with it, and since it has spaghetti straps, I have to wear something over it. I have such a hard time picking the correct coordinating cardigan. I've paired it with yellow-ish, black, and red-orange. What color should I pair it with next time? 

Cardigan: The Limited | similar
Top (c/o Mom): Banana Republic | option
Pants: The Limited | similar
Flats: via Target | exact

[Linking up for Confident Tuesday]

Monday, November 10, 2014

turtleneck + vest

I was so excited when Loft had a 50% off sale online because that meant I could finally get the tunic sweater I had my eye on for weeks! The only problem was that I had to decide whether to buy a bunch of other stuff to qualify for free shipping or pay for shipping. I hate paying for shipping. I can't remember the last time I did that. So, I did what any reasonable person would do, and I bought four pairs of jeans to qualify for free shipping.

When the order finally arrived, three pairs of jeans were terrible fits [EDIT: pair 1, pair 2, pair 3], but there was one that was pretty much perfect. And so I wore them. And paired them with all the other individual pieces I had considered wearing that day: military vest, slip on sneakers, and a sweater of some sort.

Turtleneck (gift c/o in-laws): via Kohl's
Vest: Old Navy | similar
Jeans: LOFT | exact
Sneakers: via Target | exact

[Linking up for Trend Spin: Olive/Army Green and with Bless Her Heart Y'all]
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