Wednesday, January 25, 2012

PATRIOTIC SPIN

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I suppose this outfit is a variations of one of the most classic color combinations out there - red, white and blue. It was completely unintentional and I didn't even realize I had done it until I starting writing this post. Bright tomato red tights would have made this outfit a bit too brash for my liking, while the maroon ones keep it from looking like I'm headed to a 4th of July parade six months early. Once again, my leopard flats keep an otherwise very simple outfit from delving into the completely blah territory. I really must think about investing in a new pair considering that I've had these since my senior year of high school and they really are on their last leg.

Monday, January 23, 2012

FROM BAD TO RAD: TAKE ONE

Welcome to the first installment of From Bad to Rad! While compiling my Worst of 2011 post, I realized that I would have liked many (if not all) of the outfits better if I had tweeked small elements of the ensemble. I don't necessarily think any of the outfits are hideous but small things really do make all the difference ... a pop of color here or a proportion change there could have turned something that I felt so-so about into something that I loved. And so this new feature was born.

In this feature, I am going to take an outfit that I wasn't crazy about from last year and try to make it into something that I love. To keep it a little more challenging, I will translate as many elements as possible from the original outfit into the new outfit.

From Bad:
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(You can see the outfit details in the original post ... right here.)

Why Bad?
This is a case of wrong proportions for me. I don't like how the maxi isn't quite long enough to fall over the chunky platforms and the dress seems doesn't seem substantial enough to stand up against the weight of the shoes. The turtleneck with the maxi dress reads matronly to me. However, I DO like the navy/orange color combination and the strips ... perhaps just not the thin variety.

To Rad:
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(Dress: F21 // Shirt: French Connection for JCPenny // Cardigan: NY&Co via Gabriel Brothers // Necklace: Jupe // Shoes: Steve Madden // Bag: H&M)

Why Rad?
Sporting a maxi dress and a turtleneck made me feel like I was trying to hide my body so rather than the striped turtleneck, I opted for a less matronly breton striped shirt that revealed a bit of collar bone (scandalous!). Since I really loved the original color combination, I carried that through with the bright orange cardigan. The chunky heels in the original outfit were a deal breaker for me so I knew I'd be going with flats and settled on a leopard print pair to add a little spunk.

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What do you guys think? Which outfit do you like better? What would you have changed?

Thursday, January 19, 2012

FURRY FRIEND

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Turtleneck: Burlington Coat Factory
Vest: Romwe
Jeans: Gap
Boots: Kohl's
Necklace: Forever 21

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I find myself gravitating towards more classic pieces and colors in the winter. I truly think the reasoning behind has a lot to do with the fact that I spent the last 18 years of my life in an academic setting with summers off and winters hitting the books. After a carefree summer, I've always welcomed the returning structure that school brought to my life. I suppose it is the same with clothing ... after a summer filled with breezy dresses, cut off and sandals, I'm ready for more timeless pieces. After all, fall/winter is when we end up buying most of our "classic" investment pieces, is it not?

I've wanted a fur vest for the better part of a year but never found one that I loved until I saw this one from Romwe. Husband was kind enough (read: I sent him the link fifty times to make sure he knew I really wanted it) to get it for me for Christmas. Sticking with my previous statements about classics ... I wanted to keep the outfit pretty simple. I threw in a statement necklace and bright pink lips + nails to brighten it up just a tad.

Friday, January 13, 2012

BORROWED

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Sweater: Target, via Plato's Closet
Skirt: thrifted, no tags
Tights: Kohl's
Belt: F21
Shoes: JCPenny

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(PS: I totally love how the pattern in my tights subtly echos the pattern in my skirt. I'm a sucker for details like that.)

When I wear a plaid midi skirt such as this one, I always hover between feeling a little more adult and pulled together and feeling like a teenager going to a sock hop or something of that nature. For me, it is all in the hair. With this outfit, a pony tail made me feel very juvenile but, as soon as I pulled the sucker out, I felt chic. It is funny how such a simple tweak can totally change how you feel about a look.

I have to say that this outfit was completely inspired by Kyla from Blue Collar Catwalk. I thrifted this skirt specifically to "borrow" this outfit from her. She has been killing it lately in blood orange with leopard and she is, quite honestly, the only person I've seen that can rock the overalls thing (with plaid, nonetheless!) without looking like a farmer.

I hope you all have a great weekend! Northwest Pennsylvania has finally gotten a little fluff on the ground  so I plan on sipping hot beverages and reading this book.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

PROPORTIONS

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Dress: Ross
Sweater: DKNY
Tights: Target
Boots: Kohl's
Scarf: Target

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This cozy sweater is the result of a super amazing haul last week. The same jaunt in which I was looking for a wool coat lead to some really incredible deals. I'd list it all out but, to be completely honest, it is a bit obscene and wordy, i.e. I already tried listing it but it just comes off all showy and ridiculous. Lets just say that I got this sweater, two Kenneth Cole coats and a handful of other really great things (including a Michael Kors leather jacket) ... all for under $100. Now, in my opinion, just two coats for under $100 is a pretty good deal. When you add in all those other things, whew ... lets just say I was on a sale shopping high for two days straight.

It is safe to assume that this sweater has been on my body 90% of the time since I purchased it. It is comfy, warm, has pockets and can disguise a large lunch. I don't see whats not to like about it. Except the fact that it is difficult to wear a coat with but, really, one con up against a whole bunch of pros isn't going to sway the vote on this baby. I am really loving how it looks paired with super slim silhouettes like this body hugging dress. The proportions seem just right.

So, ladies who live in cold climates, how do you deal with chunky sweaters, fur vests and things of the sort that don't want to fit under you winter coats? Is there a trick that I am missing? Or am I doomed to walk around feeling like I'm the Michelin man?

Monday, January 9, 2012

WINE+COGNAC

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Shirt: Target
Blouse: H&M
Jeans: Gap
Boots: vintage, thrifted
Bag: H&M
Bracelet (on bag): thrifted

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Wine + cognac is one of my favorite color combinations. It is so warm and rich. It always makes me feel pulled together. Add in a few gold accessories and you're done.

I wore this comfy get up to run around all day looking for a new wool coat. You see, I have a great light-weight wool blend trench that I love and, although it is terrific for autumn and spring, it just doesn't cut it for winter. While we've enjoyed and amazingly mild winter so far, I'm fairly certain that winter will not always be so kind and a good wool coat is great for one to have in their arsenal. I don't suggest wearing a donning a shirt with rolled up sleeves to try on no less than a hundred coats. It makes for a lot of unrolling and then rolling back up. The lessons you learn, people, the lessons you learn. One day, I will pass this knowledge down to my daughter and I'm sure she will be forever grateful. Kidding about that last part, of course.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

SEASONAL

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Turtleneck: Burlington
Sweater: H&M
Skirt: thrifted, hemmed
Tights: TJMaxx (fleece lined=the most amazing thing ever)
Belt: F21
Necklace: gift
Boots: Enzo Angiolini

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We got snow! And bangs! (Well, not all of Erie got bangs ... just me as far as this little blog is concerned.) Yeah, snow is wet, messy, cold, difficult to drive it ... yadda yadda yadda ... BUT is sure is pretty. If the world is going to look barren, I at least prefer a little sparkly snow to brighten it up a bit.

I've been noticing more and more how, as my closet used to be a year round closet, it just doesn't have the stamina to stand up to consistently cold temperatures. As I said before, in Texas I was able to wear 90% of my closet year round simply by layering. In Erie, is a whole different ball game as thin, summery fabrics just don't have the ability to stand up to the wind coming off the lake.

I have been been loving mixes of neutrals lately. Classic colors that don't require much thought or matching to look pulled together. For some reason, neutrals (especially camel and grey for some reason) equal comfort to me. They don't make me feel down and depressed as I hear so many other people describe them as. Don't get me wrong, I definitely dig shots of color, I just don't necessarily think that a neutral outfit has to make the wearer feel down in the dumps.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

SUPER SIMPLE

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Sweater: Gap
Coat: Victoria's Secret
Jeans: Gap
Booties: JCPenny

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Sometimes a super simple outfit is all you need. A mash-up of basics that get the job done and don't look half bad when paired together always work for me ... especially when it is wet and rainy outside.
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