Inspired By Nature Day Three


Here is my outfit for day three of Bella's "Inspired By Nature" challenge. I finally had clothes the color of the picture! So this outfit was the easiest for me to put together. Plus it is perfect for the hot weather we're having this week.

I guess this also falls into Angie's post about gelato inspired tonal ensembles, except I added a navy cardigan. :)

Thanks for looking! Comments and suggestions are appreciated. I'd love to know if you have suggestions for other color cardigans that might work with this romper.

Silk Romper: Rory Beca (via Nordstrom Rack)
Cardigan: J. Crew
Shoes: Clarks
Bracelet: J. Crew


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Inspired By Nature Day Two

Hi Everyone!

Here is my entry for day two. Again, I don't really have anything that matches the color scheme of the photo, plus it's starting to get pretty warm during the day, which limits my options.

I looked at the picture and what I saw after color was movement. The way the lily pad stems snaked through the water and the waving of the seaweed in the background put me in mind of the way fabrics interact with our body. One thing I instantly loved about the silk top was the sinuous, floaty shape it had when I walked. I paired it with the palazzo jeans I got from Ironkurtin at the YLF meetup (thank you, IK). The other thing I liked about the photo was the idea of revealing a hidden world. We can't see everything from shore. I added the bee ring because I love how the bee is under a little looking glass and you can only see it if you look at the ring from a certain angle.

Thanks for looking! : )

Blouse: Elizabeth and James
Jeans: Citizens of Humanity (from Ironkurtin)
Shoes: Me Too
Ring: Mars and Valentine


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Inspired By Nature Challenge, Day One

Hi everyone!

I'm trying to do all five days of Bella's "Inspired by Nature" outfit challenge. It really is turning out to be a challenge for me. I spent a long time in my closet yesterday trying to put some things together.

I couldn't do the colors in the picture because I don't own anything light pink or purple, so I went for mood and shapes instead. I chose this outfit based on the softness of the photo--the soft, muted colors, the light and the rounded silhouettes of the elephants. I felt very peaceful looking at the picture. My outfit also has a safari aspect because the photographer was in Africa (obvious leap, I know).

Thank you for looking! Comments and suggestions are always appreciated.

Silk Tunic: Anthropologie
Skirt: Ann Taylor
Shoes: Cole Haan
Bag: Anthropologie
Belt: Swapped


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Caught Red-Legged

Hi Everyone!

The weather has been really gorgeous here lately. Temps have been in the low 80s and it's been dry enough that I can open all the windows. Hooray!

We share a front landing with our neighbor, who is a very nice 50-something lady (she has a sign on her door that says "What happens at Grandma's, stays at Grandma's"). She came out to find out what we were doing and kind of gave us the third degree. My husband was no help, because I like to be a little diplomatic, and he's very forthright. "We're taking pictures of her outfit so she can post them on the internet for her friends." I'm all, "It's sounds weirder than it really is!" But she was really nice and said I looked really cute. I think it's easier to take photos like this in front of strangers than people you know and might see again.
: )

I got this top on sale at Anthropologie recently. I love the little snail polka dots on it and I think it will be perfect for hot weather because it's open in the back and very breezy. It overlaps so my bra won't show (unless it's a windy day, heh). A breeze blew by in the second photo, so you can see how it kind of opens up a bit.

Thank you! : )

Blouse: Anthropologie
Pants: J. Crew
Shoes: Cole Haan
Bag: Marc by Marc Jacobs


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Soft Colors (For a Change)

Hi Everyone!

When Angie wrote about open knit sweaters recently, I realized I had one in my closet that was waiting to be worn. So I built an outfit around it and this is what I came up with. I have a couple more ideas ideas for it that I want to try while the temperature is still below 90. I'm also making an effort to wear my light pink skinny jeans as much as possible before I have to put them away until November. The necklace is one I bought last year for a friend's wedding and haven't worn much since. I guess I'm digging deep in my closet right now. I wore this outfit to a meeting last Tuesday and got a lot of compliments on my shoes, which was really sweet. : )

Thanks everyone! All comments and suggestions are appreciated. : )

Sweater: Cynthia Rowley (via TJ Maxx)
Denim: J Brand
Shoes: Seychelles
Bag: Anthropologie
Necklace: J. Crew


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Smooth Sailing

Ahoy everyone!

I am trying to wear all my clothes that are appropriate for our spring (under 90 degrees) before it gets too hot. That means my skinny jeans, clamdiggers and shirts that must be layered are coming out to play.

I picked this shirt up at TJ Maxx a while ago. I love it, but it's actually made of a polyester knit, and as you can see, it must be layered. So once the hot weather hits, it will probably stay in my closet until October or so. I wore this outfit for a casual day shopping with a friend at an outlet mall. All the elements are uncomplicated and easy to take off and on when trying on new things.

Thanks, everyone! Comments and suggestions are always appreciated! :)

Dolman-Sleeve Top: BCBG (via TJ Maxx)
Tank: Banana Republic
Clamdiggers: J. Crew
Sailboat Necklace: J. Crew
Shoes: Me Too


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Inspired by Kari

Hello everyone!

This outfit is inspired by Kari's WIW post here. I loved the combination of nautical stripes and black. I don't wear black that often, so my go-to choices for this skirt would probably have been white, red or yellow. But I thought her choice looked great and was also somewhat unexpected. So when I picked up this top at the Rack a few days ago, I knew exactly how I wanted to wear it. Thank you, Kari! : )

Top: Nanette Lepore
Skirt: J. Crew
Shoes: Seychelles
Handbag: Marc by Marc Jacobs


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Country Clubbing

This outfit is pretty straightforward, but I wanted a chance to wear the new "statement" necklace I got last week. I like it a lot, but I'm still trying to figure out how to wear big jewelry. Any ideas?

It's not too hot today, so I was able to wear a cotton cardigan and not feel overheated. Also picked up these high-waisted seersucker shorts at TJ Maxx yesterday. They are super lightweight and I like the sailor button detailing on them. Do you think they need a belt? I thought about wearing a belt with this, but then I thought it would be too much with the big necklace.

Thank you!

Cardigan: J. Crew
Shorts: Sanro
Shoes: Seychelles
Necklace: J. Crew


Touch of Summer

Although it's not too hot today, I put together my first summer outfit and my husband was kind enough to snap a few quick photos before dashing off to work. I'm trying to stick to my hot weather wardrobe resolutions.

This is the light denim vest that I talked about in that post. It is much thinner than any denim I've seen, but that is going to work in my favor so I'm keeping it. The skirt is linen, which I don't usually wear because wrinkles drive me crazy, but I took the leap and got this same skirt in yellow and navy blue. I've already worn the navy blue one twice this week, and it is very cool. It feels almost like I'm not wearing anything on bottom (I had to look down to make sure my skirt hadn't blown up a couple of times). I think they will be perfect for our weather, and I guess I will learn to deal with wrinkles. I'm working hard to put together some interesting, casual outfits to stave off the summer blahs, so comments and suggestions are of course, appreciated! : )

Blouse: Equipment
Denim Vest: Madewell
Skirt: J. Crew
Shoes: Bass
Clutch: Anthropologie


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Hot Weather Dressing: Realizations and Resolutions

Ironkurtin’s recent post got me thinking about my own hot weather strategy. Right now, I’m trying to fill in my wardrobe gaps (sandals, lightweight skirts and breezy tops). Supposedly, this summer is forecasted to be as hot as last summer (over 80 days straight of 100+ degree temperatures). Except this summer there is going to be more rain, so hot plus very humid. Hooray.

All of these aren’t recent “epiphanies” so much as things I’ve come to know after living through six hot summers. But I wanted to commit them to the page and compile them in one place so I can easily reference this over the coming months. I’m hoping it will help me resist temptation and buy a lot of things that I want but just aren’t suitable for our climate (this happens from time to time). I’m also posting it to my YLF Blog. ☺

These are things I’ve figured out about my own preferences, but hopefully it will also be helpful to some of you whose dominant seasons are similarly hot.

1. Showing some skin. I feel more comfortable showing more of my legs than chest/arms. This is probably because I have an hourglass/inverted triangle body shape, and I tend to carry most of my weight in my upper body. I also use sleeved tops to soften my shoulder line. So sleeveless tops often don’t work for me, because from the front they look fine, but in the back they cut in too far. They look like they have a racerback (and not in a good way). There are some styles that do work, such as v-neck, cowl neck or crossover tops with “thick” shoulder straps. But I feel like all my sleeveless tops and dresses fall into that category and I get tired of it very quickly. Which leads me to my next realization.

2. Summers are long and I get bored. This is by far the thing I struggle with the most. How do I mix things up while keeping my wardrobe smallish? By July, I get really tired of, “Now I put this top with a yellow skirt. Now I put it with a blue skirt, now a black skirt…” But the outfit really doesn’t seem any different. I feel like I’m wearing the same thing every day for months on end. And by that time, there are still four more months to go. I just bought a denim vest that I’m hoping will help as a layering piece and make some of my outfits feel like I’m wearing something different from day to day.

3. Abundance of prints. I generally don’t like prints, so I rely on interesting design details and color to make my fashion heart sing. This makes buying summer clothing difficult, because it seems to be very simple in design, and I feel like there are always tons of prints. I’m stocking up because this year there are a lot of them that I do like: polka dots, stripes, novelty. Many times all I could find were abstract floral, geometric, and summer novelty (Hawaiian flowers, palm trees, etc.) which I tend not to prefer.

4. Special bras and foundation garments are definitely out. This one I know from experience. Things that require strapless bras will never be worn because I'll always reach for something else in my closet. Our summers are humid and strapless bras just won’t stay up on me, no matter what, when it’s humid outside.

5. Items that must be layered are out, too. If it requires layering, it will sit in my closet. There are tops and dresses that work well on their own and under a denim jacket or cotton cardigan indoors, and I look for these. But if it’s something that needs a layer, such as a top that cuts in too far on my back or has thin straps, I will never wear it once the temperatures heat up here.

6. Camis and cotton slips are most likely out. This is also from experience. This year, I’ve been on the lookout for items that don’t require either. If it’s lined in cotton, that’s okay with me. But low-cut tops and dresses that require a layering cami will sit in my closet and never be worn. I say ‘probably’ because I will make some exceptions if I really REALLY love the item and don’t plan to be outside at all that day (but that rarely happens).

7. Experimenting with statement jewelry. I tend not to wear a lot of jewelry in the summer because honestly, it gets sweaty under bracelets and necklaces that sit on my chest, and then it’s just a big, disgusting mess. So I’m looking for cute earrings that aren’t too big or very dangly, since my hair is very short. For my personal style, big earrings just feel like too much. I also bought one big yellow necklace to layer over tops that have higher necklines. That way it will sit mostly on fabric instead of skin, and hopefully I can avoid the sweaty jewelry problem.

8. More summer shoe options. I’m not a shoe girl. I actually hate shoe shopping, and if I find shoes that I like and are comfortable, I’m likely to buy them in nude and black and be done with it. But I think maybe having nicer shoes and more color and style options might make my outfits feel different. So I’m working very hard to spend my money on shoes this year, instead of all the other things I’d rather spend money on that just aren’t practical once it gets hot.

Whew, that was a long post! ☺

I’d be very interested to hear all of your summer shopping strategies! I know it has come up before, but I really can’t get enough of it. I seem to always get ideas when I hear from you guys on this subject. Also, it must be just as difficult to avoid all the impractical-for-you fun summer clothing if you live in a cool climate, as it is to avoid it when it’s scorching hot outside. "Look at all these gorgeous blouses and dresses and pants...that would be a complete waste of money for me to buy. They'd sure make great closet decorations."