Saturday, June 30, 2012

Black/White

Reader W recently asked how in the world can I stand wearing long sleeves/pants in the hot & humid DC summer. Truth is, I spend most weekdays inside a freezing office. I then walk about 20 steps to and from my car for commuting. So the longest I'm outside in the heat is actually for blog photos, lol. When weekends hit, most days I don't even care to dress nicely. A tshirt and shorts and I'm out the door. Needless to say, those outfits rarely make it to the blog.

Today's outfit is an exception. I rarely wear sleeveless tops, let alone with shorts/skirts. Looking at the photo below, I knew there's a reason why. Pale arms alert! There's something about the proportions that I'm not used to (typically I'm covered up on top with shorter bottoms or vice versa). Let's see if I can wrap my head around this new mindset for the summer.

Stay cool and have a great weekend!
necklace: gift from aunt (similar)
vest: Forever 21 sleeveless blazer (similar)
top: Ann Taylor asymmetrical drape (similar)
bracelets: Forever 21 rhinestone snake chain (similar);
ring: Forever 21 pearlescent cluster (similar)
belt: Express (similar)
shorts: American Eagle (this season's sold here)
shoes: Via Spiga Missy (sold here)

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Petite Fashion Challenge #17: Candy Colorized

Hosted by SewPetiteGal, Petite Fashion Challenge #17: Candy Colorized has us taking a bowl full of colorful candies (M&Ms, Jolly Ranchers, jelly beans, etc.), closing your eyes, and drawing 2-3 pieces. Then use those colors (+ a neutral of your choosing) to form the basis for your ensemble.

My first thought upon hearing this challenge was, "Where am I going to find navy and pink candy [two colors I wear most often]?" Then I came to my senses. What's a challenge if we're not forced to flex those creative brain muscles, right?

From a bag of peanut M&M's, I picked out: brown, yellow, and green. I then mentally ran through my closet and came up with 1 pair of brown pants, 2 yellow tops, 1 yellow belt, 1 brown belt, 1 green top, 1 green jacket, and 1 green belt. Let the mixing and matching begin!

Outfit #1: I started off nice and easy, pairing primary yellow with a more wearable shade of green. Crisp white served two purposes: my neutral color of choice and accent color for accessorizing. The color's been kind to me, probably comprising of a third of my wardrobe, therefore making it the easy default choice.
sunglasses: Walmart aviator (similar)
jacket: American Eagle surplus anorak (similar; similar
necklace: Ann Taylor oval pearlized (may still be in stores; pendant version)
tank: Old Navy (sold here)
ring: Forever 21 delicate etchings (similar)
belt: Express (this season's sold here)
shorts: American Eagle (this season's sold here)
bag: agnes b (similar) - gift from cousin
flip flops: Old Navy faux-leather capri (sold here)

Outfit #2: For the second outfit, I wanted to avoid neutrals and put together an outfit made up of the same green and yellow shades from the M&Ms. Bright green isn't a color I normally wear, so it took a little digging to remember I own a tie belt in this shade. Thank goodness for random accessories.
sunglasses: Walmart aviator (similar)
sweater: Old Navy button-back 3/4-sleeve pullover (sold here)
belt: Old Navy (similar)
bangles: Forever 21 mixed (similar)
ring: Forever 21 delicate etchings (similar
pants: Zara TRF cargo trousers (similar)

Monday, June 25, 2012

Mixed Feelings

Today's outfit is one that looked better in person but even better in my head. Hmm... those feelings sure have been popping up an awful lot lately. Regardless, I'll add this to my collection of attempts at print mixing.

Happy Monday!
necklace: Forever 21 curb chain (similar)
belt: Express (this season's sold here)
ring: Forever 21 textured horse shoe (similar)
bag: H&M (should still be in stores)
shoes: Via Spiga Missy (sold here)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Denim on Denim

Wearing head-to-toe denim can be a bit tricky. I didn't want it to be mistaken for overalls (been there, done that, thank you mom) nor like a cowgirl. So I split the all denim look in half with a wide belt. The gray blazer also softened the look with another color of interest. If neither worked to draw viewers' eyes away from all the denim, a sparkling statement necklace ought to do the trick.

Happy Thursday, everyone!
necklace: Ann Taylor oval pearlized (may still be in stores; pendant version)
blazer: H&M draped blazer (similar)
shirt: J.Crew boy shirt in Indian voile (similar)
belt: Express (this season's sold here)
ring: Forever 21 faux stone (sold here)
jeans: Hollister boot destroyed (sold here)
bag: Longchamp medium LM metal tote (sold here)
shoes: Zara court shoe with snakeskin toe (similar)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Stripes, Bows & Fuchsia

I should have said something earlier (like 5 days ago), but better late than never? I was overwhelmed with the amount of response from my Wardrobe Essentials post. Thank you all so much for reading and sharing your thoughts. Always feel free to ask/drop me a line and I'll do my best to answer.
sunglasses: Old Navy round metal-hardware (similar)
necklace: Forever 21 twisted chain (similar)
ring: Forever 21 textured horse shoe (similar)
belt: Forever 21 (similar)
pants: Ann Taylor Chelsea cropped (sold here)

Monday, June 18, 2012

Green on Green

Just a quick outfit post from last week on a rainy and dreary Monday. Hope you're having a good one!
sunglasses: Walmart aviator (similar)
necklace: Ann Taylor winter sparkle (similar)
blouse: Gap raw edge henley (similar)
belt: Express (similar)
jeans: Hollister boot destroyed (sold here)

Saturday, June 16, 2012

On Familiar Ground

If today's outfit looks a bit familiar, it's because I love the pairing of a simple tee with a scarf :) I find myself falling back to old ways, knotting a scarf around the neck for a casual but accessorized look.

Hope you're enjoying your weekend!
sunglasses: Walmart aviator (similar)
tee: H&M (similar)
belt: Old Navy (similar)
ring: Forever 21 faceted faux gemstone (sold here)
pants: Gap broken-in straight khakis (sold here)

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

My Wardrobe Essentials

The other day, I received a comment from SewPetiteGal:

Would love to see a post from you on your wardrobe essentials. I know your 30x30 challenges kind of poke on that, but you do such a great job on curating your closet (as well as remixing for completely different looks) and I'd love to see an update :)

I jokingly replied that every piece in my closet is considered essential. Or at least that's what I tell myself to justify each purchase ;) I personally don't think I have a well-curated closet (thanks SPG for the kind words though) because my closet seems to be growing at a more rapid pace than what is going out. One thing that works for me is not buying duplicates and very rarely do I buy similar items (weakness: three gingham shirts). I figured if I'm faced with a dilemma every morning between two pairs of slightly different dark-washed skinny jeans, I'll always reach for my favorite over the other.

In general, my life is pretty simple and my wardrobe reflects that. I work in a casual environment and spend my weekends in an even more casual state. For times where I feel like dressing up, I try to buy items that will work in both worlds. I do this to get the most wear out of my clothes and to challenge my styling ability.

I'm hesitant at putting a hard cap on the number of essential items because lifestyles change and so do closet size. So using categories as a guide, here are my wardrobe essentials:

Button-up shirt: Whether solid colored, various fabric (linen, chambray), or prints (gingham), I live in button-up shirts. They allow me to seamlessly transition between work and casual outfits because they are just so versatile (and perfect for layering). Examples include: (1) by itself; (2) doubled up (great way to mix colors/patterns/textures); (3) layered underneath with collar and hem out; (4) open and layered with a jacket; (5) turning a dress into a skirt.
outfit details: one / two / three / four / five

Tee: I find plain t-shirts to be the best blank canvas to style an outfit around. V-necks work best for me because I'm small up top and the neckline is great for accessorizing. Examples include: (1) simple and classic in t-shirt and jeans; (2) dressed up with a blazer; (3) moto-chic; (4) business casual work-appropriate; (5) feminine with lace.
outfit details: one / two / three / four / five

Pants: I like skirts, but I'll always be a pants kind of girl. Right now I'm going through a slacks phase, but I always eventually go back to form-fitting, well-worn jeans.

Outerwear: More often than not, a well-tailored blazer will suit any occasion (though it's also nice to have a casual jacket, ie: anorak/leather, on hand for others). Of my three blazers (navy, gray, black), I find myself reaching for the navy most often. I suppose the color is just so easy to pair with everything. Examples include: (1) with a dress; (2) with a skirt; (3) with shorts; (4) with cargoes; (5) with jeans.
outfit details: one / two / three / four / five

Trendy piece(s): I'm a believer that fashion should be fun. There's nothing more laughter-inducing than when experiments go wrong. It's also times like this when you learn about your personal style -- what works for you and what items should be burned.

The cost of chasing trends can add up, so I try to stick to a couple items at a time, and from the cheaper end of the spectrum (Old Navy, Forever 21, sales, etc). If an item works out, great! I'll wear it until it needs a replacement. If not, that's okay. It's a small cost to pay.

This season, I jumped on board the train for big polka dots, tapered pants, and anchor prints. Trends that I decided are not a great fit for me include pastels and peplum. I won't completely rule them out for the future, but as of right now I have my hands full.

When paired with older/classic pieces, trendy items are a great way to give an old outfit a new "look." I do this often by taking an overworn outfit and replacing a piece or two here and there. To the general public, it may look like a completely new outfit but I know better ;) For example, a black tee and jeans worn two ways: with an anorak vs. a fur vest.

Bags: I love bags, so my essentials list is probably longer than most. I have a diverse enough collection where most (if not all) voids have been filled: dressy, casual, crossbody, low-maintenance, fun, and clutch. If I had to pick just one as the utmost essential, it would have to be my white Longchamp tote. It best fits my everyday needs, rain or shine.

Shoes: This is probably the hardest one to narrow down, but I'll say: neutral pumps/wedges (ie: black, nude, snake-skin), ballet flats (great for casual and dressy occasions), non-rubber sandals/flip-flops, and a pair that's totally unexpected (ie: satin, bows, spikes).

Accessories: A scarf is my most essential accessory. Not far behind would be a statement necklace. I feel that both pieces would instantaneously add an interesting detail to any outfit, especially simple/neutral-colored ones. Scarf examples include: (1) dressed up; (2) with a sweater; (3) for warm weather; (4) to stay warm; (5) for added color.
outfit details: one / two / three / four / five

What are your wardrobe essentials?

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Fuchsia Again

When I "rediscover" an item (ie: today's necklace), I tend to wear it a few days in a row ;) Don't mind me and my repeat items. Have a great Tuesday!
sunglasses: Walmart aviator (similar)
tee: H&M (similar)
belt: J.Crew piped glitter (similar)
ring: Forever 21 delicate etchings (similar
pants: Ann Taylor Chelsea cropped (sold here)
wedges: Via Spiga Missy (sold here)

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Brighter Than the Sun

I've been playing it safe when it came to this turquoise necklace. Only pairing it with neutrals, think: white, gray, black, and repeat. Well, I'm scared no more!

I initially wore the necklace underneath the sweater, in the exposed part of my neck. I thought a little bit of turquoise peeking out would look cute, but the necklace just didn't sit right. So outside it went. A much better result, if I may say so myself. I also liked how the necklace curves and drapes around the neckline of the sweater.

Note to self: must remember to wear this color combination again!
sunglasses: Old Navy round metal-hardware (similar)
necklace: Amrita Singh Sag Harbor (similar; similar)
shirt: Hollister Clobberstones gingham (similar)
sweater: Old Navy button-back 3/4-sleeve pullover (sold here)
ring: Spotted Moth via Kendi's giveaway (similar)
bracelet: Forever 21 chain link (similar)
skirt: Express (similar)
bag: Longchamp medium LM metal tote (sold here)
sandals: Ann Taylor Iris bow patent leather (sold here)

Friday, June 8, 2012

Green & Pink

I'm giving my feet a break today from wearing heels all week. I considered my boat shoes but it doesn't seem to go with the shape of the skirt, so a trusty pair of ballet flats it is. Though not perfect (these H&M flats I've been coveting would be better), gotta work with what's in the closet ;)

Have a great weekend!
sunglasses: Walmart aviator (similar)
scarf: The Limited large dot (similar)
jacket: American Eagle surplus anorak (similar; similar)
tee: American Eagle deep v-neck (similar)
ring: Spotted Moth via Kendi's giveaway (similar)
skirt: Forever 21 striped bodycon (this season's sold here)
flats: Mossimo Desta ballet (similar)

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Ladylike

I dug out two pieces, the scarf and the dress, that haven't seen the light of day in much too long. I felt like I should be wearing this outfit in the fall, not the first week of June. Hooray for warmer weather this upcoming weekend!
sunglasses: Old Navy round metal-hardware (similar)
scarf: Forever 21 (similar)
belt: Forever 21 (similar)
ring: Forever 21 pearlescent cluster (similar)
bag: H&M (should still be in stores)
shoes: Via Spiga Missy (sold here)

Monday, June 4, 2012

Coming Full Circle

Last year, I fell in love with J.Crew cafe capris in bright dahlia on Blair. Tried on the pants myself and it was a disaster. Then I gave a skirt in a similar color a shot and thought it was too expensive at retail price. I waited for sale season but wasn't diligent enough at refreshing my browser for potential pop backs. When the bright dahlia cafe capris went on sale, I admired them from afar on Khatu, Tiffany, and Jean, with just a little hint of jealousy.

Not soon after, I was elated to see these Ann Taylor Chelsea cropped pants in intense orchid online. Deja vu, anyone? Cher was kind enough to sell me hers (see her review) after most small sizes had sold out. The fit isn't perfect on me, but I'll live because I love the color and length. The material itself wrinkles like crazy --- all I did was go to work, sit, and walk around! So please excuse the wrinkle mess; I didn't have time in the morning for photos. As for pluses, does machine washable count?
sunglasses: Walmart aviator (similar)
necklace: Forever 21 twisted chain (similar)
dress as top: Forever 21 Chantilly lace (similar)
belt: J.Crew piped glitter (similar)
ring: Forever 21 pearlescent cluster (similar)
pants: Ann Taylor Chelsea cropped (sold here)
bag: H&M (should still be in stores)
sandals: Ann Taylor Iris bow patent leather (sold here)

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Sunday Casual

A quick outfit post on a gorgeous Sunday. Looking forward to a great week ahead!
ring: Spotted Moth via Kendi's giveaway (similar)
skirt: Forever 21 scalloped linen blend (similar)

Photos thanks to my bf.
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