Friday, December 29, 2017

A New Website

Hi all! Over winter break, I took the time to make this blog a bit more formal. I've started posting on

I'm hoping this new location will make it easier to find me and will offer me a few more options for how I post. Thanks for joining me on this adventure!

Saturday, December 16, 2017

And Then I Embraced Ankle Boots...

Hi! I hope most of you are enjoying the start of a much-deserved break. I'm still a few days away from the sweet sound of...well...I guess it's the lack of a sound...the lack of an alarm.

The outfit I'm discussing today is proof, that while I am not really an early adapter to some trends, I do, eventually, give in. I was this way with capris, skinny jeans, and now we can add wearing ankle boots with skirts to the list.

I do feel the need to brag and say that I was quick to embrace booties. It's just the casual ankle boots with skirts that I'm just now coming around to. But I have, evidently, fully embraced the trend because I wore this combination twice in the same week.

I love this because it gets me out of heels for a day and keeps my feet so nice and warm. Flats are really, really not a good look for me, especially with skirts and if you add in tights, I totally look like a little girl going to get her school pictures taken. I know several taller women who look very Mary-Tyler-Moore-like in their flats, but that's just not me. I assume it has something to do with my height. So--while it's important to sort out what cuts of pants work for you, etc. It also is important to know what shoes work for your body type and the way you spend your day. I somehow handle heels pretty well most days as long as I've been picky in selecting well-made heels. And on cold days when I'm worried about warmth or black ice, I'm a big fan of riding boots, and now ankle boots.

For this outfit, you can also see that my love of chambray makes me a logical denim jacket fan. I really, really love having a denim jacket. I wear it in the winter with outfits like this, but it's also the perfect jacket to get you through spring and fall as well. I will carry this with me anywhere I go in warmer weather when I'm worried that the AC will be too much for my fragile little arms. It's also perfect for chilly nights at the end of summer or the start of spring. Basically this is my friend any time I'm not wearing jeans.

The one I own is from J. Crew, and they don't have theirs for sale right now. I'm sure it'll come back in the spring. But this is The Gap's version, and I had one of theirs for a decade before I finally bought a replacement.

product photo

I actually bought this skirt last winter, but I never wore it then, so it made its debut a few weeks ago. The sweater is a short sleeve sweater that I plan to wear over some long sleeve shirts and plan to wear with skirts in the spring. I couldn't find the exact skirt, so I've linked a few cute tweed skirts.

Here's a similar one from The Loft.
Color Swatch 5022Zip Pocket Tweed Skirt

And here's another option from The Loft.

Color Swatch 2222Fringe Tweed Pocket Shift Skirt

And, understandable, the short sleeve shirt isn't readily available at this point in the year.
There's only one size left, but this is the sweater.

Short-sleeve sweater

I feel sure they will bring these back around in the spring.

As I mentioned earlier, this was my first time to pair my ankle boots with my skirt. One of my awesome co-workers (And she makes an appearance in this post.) inspired me to give it a try because she always looks so cute in her skirt/ankle boots combo. I found myself super-comfy all day because my feet were so happy because they were warm and not in heels.

I bought my boots last fall, so I couldn't find the exact pair, but here are some similar options.

Breck Bootie
Lucky Brand is my go-to these days.

Brett Bootie

These look pretty cute too!

There are a few other cute options from Lucky Brand, but I'll stop with these two.

Okay--I'm off. Hope this helps you think about another option for winter pairings.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

It's So Hard to Say Goodbye... yesterday!

This blog post is dedicated to all of those clothes that we love, but don't love wearing anymore.

Here is the short tale of my Sunday night to Monday morning:
1. Teacher sets out dress to wear.
2. Decides she hates wearing that dress.
3. Sets out a pair of pants that fit weird.
4. Tells herself that she'll give these pants one more shot.
5. Wakes up the next morning and puts on predetermined outfit.
6. Realizes that the cardigan she selected looks terrible with the outfit. Changes cardigan.
7. Realizes that these pants are a really weird fit and she'll spend the whole day uncomfortable.
8. Decides that life is too short to wear awful pants while other things hang in the closet.
9. Changes pants.
10. Leaves for school, hoping for the best.

Maybe I'm the only one this happens to, but I tend to keep things in my closet because I feel guilty getting rid of perfectly good clothes. But the truth is, when your height is solidified, and you don't have a job in which your clothes get worn out, there just comes a point when you've been wearing the same things for years, and you just get tired of them. Or you buy something, and a year into it being absorbed in your closet you realize that it isn't something that really works for your body type. Whatever it is, it feels like a betrayal to get rid of it.

BUT--a few years ago, I read a book that brought up a good point. If you have clothes in your closet that aren't being worn, you're keeping someone else from being able to wear them. Thinking about how many women have a hard time building up a wardrobe because they are starting to work or have escaped from a abusive relationship or are just on a tight budget made me realize that hoarding clothes that I don't need wasn't responsible. I realized that it would make more sense for me to pass along things I no longer wear and simply put the things I love in higher rotation. Even from a selfish viewpoint, every day I wear something I hate is a day I'm not wearing an outfit that I love. I've tried to be better about giving things away that I don't actually enjoy wearing, only buying things that I really love, and just wearing fewer items more often (and mixing and matching to make new outfits).

Quick note: Don't think you always have to take your retired clothes to Goodwill. There are plenty of non-profits that work with people in need of professional clothes--internship programs, job training programs, etc. I actually donate my dress clothes to my co-workers who work with students in internships.

So I know that not everyone has the luxury of only wearing things they love. Sometimes you just have to wear what you have. I get it. But I would say to just think about how you feel all day in your wardrobe, and, when you can, taking things out of rotation that don't set you up for a good day. And then pay close attention to what things in your closet really make you feel confident, comfortable, and, dare I say it, stylish. And try to take those observations with you when you go shopping.

If you like my outfit I finally settled on, here are some helpful links. (Funny enough, this cardigan is 11 years old, the shirt is 3 or so years old, the shoes and belt are from at least a few seasons ago, and the pants are the birthday pants I talked about in the spring.) So things don't have to be super trendy or new to make you feel confident. They just have to be a good fit for you.

Okay--Here's a newer version of my chambray shirt.

Pocket chambray shirt

And here's a comparable sweater.

Cotton Caryn cardigan sweater

And here's a lighter version.

product photo

And here are the birthday pants.

product photo

Okay--in closing, here are my tips of the day:
1. If you have enough items in your closet, get rid of clothes that make you feel awful, don't fit or just hang there.
2. Learn from shopping mistakes. Be picky even if it means wearing fewer things more often.
3. There are plenty of great causes in any community. There's always somewhere to take the clothes you don't wear so that someone else will benefit from them.