Monday, February 28, 2011

The Most Monday of Mondays

Daily Outfit, 2/28/11

Ugh.  I have such a raging case of the Mondays today.  And it was the most Monday of Mondays.



This is a close-up of the fabric of the skirt.  See?  Shiny.

Today’s outfit was built around this Jones New York skirt.  I thrifted it a couple of weeks ago and was excited to wear it because it was brand-new, tags-still-attached, fully lined (more on that later) and shiny.  I’m not great with shiny for the daytime but this is subtle, so it’s still within my comfort zone.  I paired it with a lace tee (The Limited) layered over a cami, with a black cardigan (Gap), layered tights (black crosshatch (Assets via Target) over olive (Hue via The Rack)) and my go-to black booties (BC Shoes “Swear” via Piperlime).  I wanted to wear my agate sweater clip, but it didn’t quite work with the cut of the sweater, so I wore my necklace from Special, which I love.

After all that excitement, I’m not sure I like this skirt.  Or maybe just not this outfit.  Or maybe it’s just Monday.  I thought this would be cuter, but it’s just not.  I think I look blocky and strange.  Maybe I should have worn a belt – belts make everything better (true story).  Or maybe I shouldn’t have tucked in my top – I feel like this skirt is screaming “Look at my belly!”  Or, maybe, it’s just Monday.

Today really was the most Monday of Mondays.  It has finally warmed up enough to rain, but now it is POURING.  Rainy days are always a little more difficult for me in terms of taking my outfit pics and getting to work.  I have to get the dog where he needs to be, go to the garage (sadly not attached), get my bike, park my bike under the eaves of the garage, shed the coat and scarf, get the umbrella, set up the camera and take the pictures.  But, because it’s Monday, none of what should happen on a rainy day did.

When riding my bike on rainy days, I have the additional step of wrapping my purse in a waterproof bag before placing it in my basket so it doesn’t get wet.  Today, I was in the garage, bagging my bag when I realized I didn’t know where my camera was.  I wasn’t sure if it was still in the house or if it was in my purse.  I was already running late (because it’s Monday) and didn’t want to have to go back in the house.  I also didn’t want to have to get my purse back out to look for the camera that I wasn’t sure was even there.  I decided to just take my pictures later, once I found my camera.

So, I wheeled my bike out of the yard, and as soon as I threw my leg over my bike, I heard a tearing sound.  Panic!  Now I’m thinking I’m going to have to take time to go change and I’m already late.  This is the first time I’ve worn this skirt, and I thought the cut would allow me to wear it while riding my bike.  It turns out that the cut of the skirt does; but, the cut of the lining does not.  Yep, the tearing sound was the lining, not the skirt, but needless to say I was freaked out for a moment.

Sadly, the bike ride did not get any better.  It was pouring rain, it was windy, I forgot my gloves so my hands were freezing, and I had to ride through “puddles” that stretched over entire streets.  I tried coasting through them by tucking my feet up, but still got splashed.   I arrived at work with cold hands, soaked legs and raccoon eyes (rain + mascara = raccoon).

Yes, it was the most Monday of Mondays.  How about you guys?  How was your weekend?  And more importantly, how was your Monday?

Gracey

P.S. Fergita Pepita said the reason I don't like this outfit very much is for the same reason she loves it; it doesn't have any color.  Fergita Pepita - hater of color, but kind enough to take my outfit shots.  Thanks again, Fergita!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Mother Nature’s Mind Games

Daily Outfit, 2/25/11

It is absolutely freezing here today.  Actually, it was below freezing.  I think it was all of 26 degrees when I rode my bike in this morning.  It was very sunny, but very, very cold; which makes me think Mother Nature is messing with my head.  In the past week, we’ve had snow, rain, sleet, wind, sun, below freezing temps and I think some hail, often all in the same day.  And today, we’ve got gorgeous sun which makes me want to dress for Spring, coupled with cold that makes me want to stay in bed with my heated mattress pad (possibly the best invention ever).




I should have layered tights or leggings under my olive skinny jeans (Gap).  It was windy today and it cut right through my jeans.  I wore the jeans with a long-sleeve tee (Old Navy), which I layered under my cowl-neck sweater (Kersh via Ross).  Cap-toe boots (Born Crown via Macy’s) and a shiny scarf (BCBG Outlet) and I’m good to go (although an extra pair of socks was probably in order).

I actually quite like this outfit, in spite of the fact that it’s not warm enough.  I was worried about wearing a scarf with a cowl-neck, but I think it worked; in part because the sweater is nice and drape-y.  Color-wise, I love grey and olive together and I love this shiny scarf, so it works for me.
 
Tonight, Jodee and I are going to dinner and then going to the Blazer game versus the Denver Nuggets.  I am not the biggest fan of the NBA (they seem to whine an awful lot about money for getting paid as much as they do), but I do love live sporting events in general, and I love hanging with Jodee, so it should be fun.  Afterwards, I’ll be staying the night at her new place, which I am very excited to see. 

What about you guys?  Does anyone have any big plans for the weekend?

Happy Friday, All, and as always, thank you for reading!

Gracey

P.S. Today's "photo shoot" was hilarious.  Fergita Pepita took the photos (except for the last shot) and Kathy stood on the side yelling about how cold it was.  I believe she used the word "arctic" about seven times.  And yes, it was that cold.

FBFF Blog Awards

It's Friday!  And that means it's time for a FBFF post.

Today, we FBFF members were charged with nominating one blogger for each of the categories below and explaining why we nominated them.  The top five nominees from each category will be selected as finalists and the awards will be opened up to a public vote.

Below are my nominations, but I have to say that I’m more excited to see everyone else’s than I was to do my own.

1. Creative Juices - most creative

Audi from Fashion for Nerds has an extremely creative sense of style.  From her color pairings to her layers, she is constantly coming up with ideas that I would never have thought of, but happily to try incorporate into my own style.

2. The Real Deal – authenticity

Allison from Tall Girl Blogging.  I first visited her blog because she is tall, but I became a follower because she is remarkably real.  Her blog has a very personal feel and I never feel like she’s trying to be something she’s not. 

3. Spark Notes - most helpful

Sal from Already Pretty.  Whether it’s her posts or guest posts that she puts together, you can learn pretty much anything from Sal.  Wearing layers, wearing color, wearing belts, you name it, Sal has great advice on her blog about it.  She also has her ‘Lovely Links’ posts, which provide links to additional helpful posts on other blogs.

4. Newbie - best blogger less than a year old

Jodi from Day 2 Day Wear – I love her blog.  She seems to really enjoy life and that comes across in her blog.  She has a definite sense of joie de vivre that I appreciate immensely.

5. Can You Hear Me Now - most connected

I think Jessica, of What I Wore, is probably the most connected blogger I know.

6. If I had a Hammer - best DIY

Erica from psimadethis is awesome.  She can make anything and makes it look as though I, without a single creative bone in my body, would also be able to successfully do-it-myself.

7. Tribe Leader - blogger who leads others and brings bloggers together

Katy from Modly Chic.  These Friend Friday Questions, but also the Blogger Profiles have been very helpful for me, as a new blogger.  Both have helped me discover wonderful new blogs to read and I’ve learned a lot from the FBFF Google Group discussions.


8. Practically Perfect - most fashionable

This was tough for me because there are so many stylish bloggers out there, but I’m going to go with Christine of My Style Pill.  She is fashionable, but in a way that still feels accessible to me.

9. Paint by Numbers - best beauty blogger

I’m not a beauty girl, so I don’t follow or read any beauty blogs.  I'm not saying I shouldn't, I'm just saying I don't. 

10. Renaissance Woman - best all around blogger, fashion, beauty, lifestyle

I’m going to have to go with Maegan from … Love, Maegan on this one.  She has a ton of DIY projects (everything from bags to necklaces to feather skirts) and also posts about fashion, posts hair-style and make-up how-tos and home decorating ideas and projects.

As always, thank you to Katy at Modly Chic for putting these together.

Happy Friday, All!

Gracey

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Perfect Foil

Daily Outfit, 2/24/11

Oregon was supposed to be hit by a late-winter storm sometime this week, and finally, this morning, we had snow on the ground.  Not much, but it’s the perfect foil for my black and red outfit. 




I layered a sleeveless wool dress (Liberty House, thrifted), over my cap-sleeve red dress (Banana Republic, also seen here), which I in turn layered over a black turtleneck (Old Navy) and black tights (Spanx Tight End Tights via Nordstrom).  I paired the outfit with my brown studded belt (Michael Michael Kors via Nordstrom) and brown riding boots (Born Crown “Sosie” via Nordstrom). 
 
I wasn’t sure how this would turn out (you know I didn’t try it before-hand), but I really like it. And, as an added bonus, from the side, I look as though I'm dressed like a ninja - it's hilarious, I'm sorry we didn't get a picture.

Enough about the clothes though.  Last night I went to Jazzercise and was utterly mortified by my teacher.  Let me give you a little background first.  One, and I’ve mentioned this before on my blog, a few years ago I took a pole-dancing class for a year or two.  And I loved it – best exercise ever.  Two, my friend Kory is one of the friendliest people I know, but as such, she tells everybody everything.  When she first began doing Jazzercise, she told everyone in our class everything about her and that I was taking a pole-dancing class. 

Fast-forward to last night’s Jazzercise class.  We’re doing this corny move that involved pelvic thrusts and making motorcycle-revving motions with your hands while waving them above your head.  It’s not a sexy move.  It’s a move that one might see Kevin James doing in “Hitch.”  But, my instructor, God love her, apparently thinks it’s sexy and something a stripper might do (it’s not) because she yells into the microphone “Gracey, you should love this move because you used to be a pole dancer!” 

More than a few people turned and stared at me and all I could think was, “Wow.  I took a pole-dancing EXERCISE class, I didn’t moonlight at Starz.”    But, it’s the middle of class and I can’t defend myself.  So, I’m pretty sure that everyone in my Jazzercise class thinks I’m an ex-stripper. They might not, however, as my instructor is always yelling awesomely random things into the mic.  I'm not sure anyone was paying attention and if they were, there is always the hope that people were suffering from oxygen deprivation and won’t remember.  Fingers crossed!

Happy Thursday, All!

Gracey

P.S. Today's pictures were taken by the lovely Phyllisa Applebum (she and Kathy gave me a ride to spare me from having to ride my bike in the snow.  I don't bike well in the snow).  Thanks, Phyllisa!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Blue Print

Daily Outfit, 2/23/11

Yes, it was very, very windy.

I have had these jeans forever, and I think I’ve only worn them twice.  They’re nice and long, but, although you can’t see it very well in the pictures, they are pintucked down the front of the leg.  When I purchased them, I thought the pintucking was a cute design element (and they were on sale), but it’s probably one of the worst design elements for thighs like mine.  It’s the same reason I don’t wear pinstripes – the stripes get all skewed around the thigh-u-lar (real word) area and my thighs look even bigger.

So, when my initial outfit fell through this morning (I have got to learn to try stuff on at night), I thought I would wear these with a tucked in, flowy blouse, because flared jeans and the 70s are in and whatnot.  And I figured I should wear the flares I have instead of buying new ones (exhibiting some rarely seen frugality).  Unfortunately, it had been a couple years since I’ve worn them, and apparently I had conveniently forgotten the trauma inflicted by the darned pintucks. 
    
And sunny, hence the sexy squint.

It was a dilemma; I wanted to wear the pants but I hate the pintucks on the thighs.  The solution?  Cover my thighs.  I know it’s a rule of thumb to wear a fitted top if you’re wearing wide/loose bottoms, but I say rules are meant to be broken; or at least this particular rule on this particular day.  So, today I paired my flared jeans (Banana Republic) with my new tunic (Angie via Ross), my brown cardigan (Old Navy), faux-lace-up boots (Kenneth Cole Reaction) and orange cashmere scarf (Nordstrom).

I'm just happy in this one.

I am obsessed with tops of this sort; dolman-sleeved and v-necked with an empire-waist.  I like to think they look good on me, but suspect I would wear them anyway.  They are great for layering both under and over and are super comfortable.  And I think this one may be my favorite one yet.  I love the fabric (it’s rayon so it flows nicely) and I love the print; the colors work so well for my closet.

How do you guys feel about breaking fashion “rules”?  Are you for it or against it?  And how do you feel about the resurgence of flared/wide-legged pants – will you being joining in?

Happy Wednesday, and as always, thank you for reading!

Gracey

P.S. Thank you, Kathy, for taking today's pictures for me!!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Yellow Cords Redux – This One’s for Ferge

Daily Outfit, 2/22/11

It’s no secret that I love pairing bright colors together.  I love it, but apparently some others hate it with the same fiery burning passion that they hate these pants.  I don’t understand hating these pants (they’re awesome) or pairing bright colors (double the awesome), but my friend Ferge hates them both.

So, Ferge, this one’s for you…




The cords are, of course, my mustard-yellow, cropped cords from the Gap, the tan/cream tunic is Old Navy, the blue sweater is Beth Bowley via Nordstrom Rack, the boots are Born Crown via Nordstrom, the scarf is very old and I can’t remember where I got it from and the belt is Mossimo (Target).

This outfit makes me very happy.  For me, yellow pants = happiness and the multi-colored belt increases the happiness quotient by 10 (Ferge rolled her eyes when she saw it).  Adding to the happiness is the fact that this is one of my all-time favorite cardigans, and you all know how much I love the boots.  The outfit is bright, but I don’t feel like its over-the-top because I’ve paired it with cream and tan and brown; for me, this is perfect.

Happy Tuesday, Everyone!

Gracey

Monday, February 21, 2011

Weecap: Leggings, Sequin Jacket, Leggings

President's Day Weekend in which Gracey wears leggings, does some minor thrifting, goes dancing in a vintage sequin jacket, sleeps late and wears more leggings to do absolutely nothing.

Saturday, 2/19/11:



Saturday I ran some errands: banking and thrifting mostly.  I wore grey leggings (Target), a black sweater dress (Macy's), a red (I know it looks orange, but it's red) scarf (Macy's) and my cap-toe Born boots (Nordstrom).  It was sunny, but cold, so I topped it off with a grey/black vintage coat.


Saturday Night, 2/19/11:





This is what I wore on Saturday night I went out for drinks and then dancing with my friend, Mary, and some of her friends.  It was a pretty simple outfit - skinny jeans (Flirt, Old Navy), black tee (Target) and black wedges (Vince Camuto via Ideeli), but I increased the interest with my vintage black sequin jacket (gifted from my mom) and these amazing earrings.  They are the "Hooded Wonder" earrings from Betsy and Iya, made by local Portland artist Betsy Cross, and if you're interested you can find your own at her Etsy shop.  The ring is from Nordstrom and the clutch is from a little boutique on NW 23rd in Portland, called Galore.

It was great to catch up with Mary; she works in a different building now,  so I don't get to see her regularly.  And we had a lot of fun at the club; it was a good crowd and I was afforded ample opportunity to yell "Jersey Turnpike" while watching people dance.  The only downside was that we didn't know a lot of the songs the DJ was playing - I guess I'm getting old...

Sunday, 2/20/11: Sorry, no outfit pics.  I didn't actually leave the house.  I cleaned up a little, hung out with my nephews and just relaxed.

Monday, 2/21/11:



I didn't do much today, either.  Some laundry, a little grocery shopping and that was about it.  It was a very low-key day and my outfit is appropriately low-key.  Black leggings (Hue via Nordstrom), raspberry skirt (Target), raspberry long-sleeve tee (Gap), black sweater (Jones New York via Ross), black slouch boots (Chinese Laundry via Piperlime) and multi-colored scarf (v. old via ???).

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend.  And thank you all for your suggestions regarding my brown slacks - I've definitely got some ideas now.

Gracey

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Help Wanted

Hello, Dear Readers –

I need your advice.  I bought a pair of dark brown, wide-legged slacks last weekend and I have no idea what to wear them with.

These are the pants of which I speak:

I know they look black, but in truth they are a dark chocolate brown.  I couldn't seem to get a better picture of them, but I wanted to at least show the shape even if I couldn't show the color properly.

The problem is that I don’t wear a lot of brown and I don’t think I’ve ever worn brown pants (except probably in the 70s – that sounds right).  And now that I have some brown pants, I have no idea what to wear with them.  Then why did I buy them, you ask?  Fair question – and there are actually several answers.  One, I think I wear too much black and thought brown was a nice alternate neutral.  Two, they were only $10.50 at the Banana Republic Factory Store.  Three, they’re in my size and are a long!  I didn’t even know the BR Factory Store carried longs, so I got super excited and I bought them.

And as soon as I got them home, I realized I had no idea how to style them.  So, I need your help.  If you were in possession of some long brown pants, what would you wear them with?

Thanks, folks, you’re the best!!

Gracey

Friday, February 18, 2011

Static Cling

Daily Outfit, 2/18/11



I’ve had this dress/tunic for years (via Ross) and I love this color – I think it’s so pretty.  I wore it layered over a long-sleeve tee from Old Navy, my INC leggings (Macy’s) and with my Born Crown boots.  And my orange cashmere scarf; because orange goes with everything.  But, I think it looks especially good with this blue, in part because the hue of the tunic and the hue of the scarf are similar in intensity.

Thankfully you can’t really see it in this picture, but this outfit suffered from serious static cling all day and it was very irritating.  Especially because I didn’t have any way to get rid of the cling.  I don’t use hairspray so that was out; and last time I borrowed some but I don’t think it worked.  Do you guys have any suggestions for dealing with static cling? 

Goodness, I am so glad its Friday.  I locked myself out of the house, again, this morning.  I’m going to tell you all a secret – I’m a bit scatterbrained at times and have locked myself out of the house at least five times since we moved there in July.  It’s completely embarrassing, but sort of hilarious too.  I had to run over to my sister’s job (less than a block, thankfully), borrow her keys, take my pictures, run her keys back and ride to work in freezing cold rain.  Not my best Friday.  But, it is Friday and that makes me very, very happy.

And it’s a three-day weekend!  No big plans for me this weekend, except for going dancing with my friends Alex and Mary on Saturday night.  Which should be fabulous – I haven’t been out dancing forever.  Do you guys get three days this weekend?  Any exciting plans?

Happy Friday, Everyone.  And thank you all again for your kind words on my FBFF Body Image post.  I'm not going to stop blogging, I just need to get used to it.


As always, thank you for reading,

Gracey

Friend Friday - Body Image

Hi All -

Below are my answers for this week's Friend Friday questions.  Please to enjoy.

1. Since you started blogging has your image of yourself changed?

I feel less sure of myself now that I’m blogging.  Not just of my body, but of myself in general.  Before I started my blog I thought I was a stylish, funny woman with something to say.  Now that I’ve started blogging, I’m starting to question if that’s true. 

Outfits that I feel comfortable in, and feel like I look good in don’t always photograph the way they feel.  So, I’ve start to question if I know what actually looks good on me.  I wonder if I might be delusional about what actually fits my body and what is actually flattering. 

And my style?  I wonder if it’s too ambitious referring to it as “style.”  It’s not high fashion and it’s not avant garde; it’s just average, everyday clothing.  Is that really worth writing about?  Is anyone really interested in the everyday wear of a regular girl, albeit a really tall one?  Is my style really anything to write home about, much less write a blog about?

Now, I feel myself stressing about what to wear – not in the usual what-am-I-going-to-wear-today way, but in the I-hope-people-like-this sort of way.  And I’ve never been someone who worried if people liked what I wore.  I don’t want to stop being me because that was the whole point of my blog – just me, rambling on about my style.


2. Are you self-conscious about any aspect of yourself? If so, do you go out of your way to avoid it or do you post it/talk about it anyway?

I have a love/hate relationship with my hips and thighs.  On one hand, I love how strong my thighs are and I recognize that my broad hips balance my broad shoulders.  On the other hand, I like to playfully accuse my thighs of trying to take over the world.  They’re big.  I have no illusions about that and frankly, there is no hiding these bad boys. 

Because of that, I don’t avoid discussion of them on my blog.  I talk about them a lot (maybe too much) but in a joking manner.  I don’t want to complain about them, because they are what they are.  But, they do influence my clothing choices and when I blog about what I wore that day, if my thighs affected my decisions at all, I’m honest about it.


3. Based on how you are feeling now, what do you think the future holds in the evolution of your body image?

I don’t know.  I use to be very, very thin, but over the past five years I’ve gained quite a bit of weight and am two, sometimes three dress sizes bigger than I was then.  All in all, I’ve accepted my new weight – I think the new curves are a good thing for my body.  But its still weird for me – I sometimes forget how big I’ve gotten and I’ll select clothes to try on that are two sizes two small.  I don’t buy them, which is a positive, but for some reason I still try them on.  And I haven’t gotten rid of everything in my closet that is too small yet – but I’m working on it.

Mostly when I think of the future, I wonder if I’ll just keep gaining weight.   And I wonder how I’ll handle it if I do.  Will I panic and go on a crash diet?  Will I become a shut-in?  Will I accept it like I’ve accepted this new weight?  (Which opens a whole other can of worms for me; is it a bad thing that I’ve accepted my weight?  Should I fight harder to get back to my old weight?) 

Whatever the future brings, be it weight gain, weight loss, grey hair or wrinkles, I just hope that I handle it gracefully.

4. Do you photograph yourself for your blog? If so, how do you feel about the experience when you're having your picture taken? If you choose not to post pictures of yourself, what prompted that decision?

I do photograph myself, although not very well.

For me the issue is not with having my picture taken, it’s with the end result.  I joked to a friend the other day that I needed a stylist or a director for my photo shoots because I’m always a bit of a hot mess in my photos.  My hair is messy, my pant cuffs are uneven and my necklaces are backwards.  I don’t mind so much for myself, because those photos are very representative of who I am (I am a bit messy-haired and uneven), but I’m sure they’re not great to look at.  Frankly, I’m just not certain that I look good in still photos.  I think I might be one of those people who look better in motion.

I also realized that I have a strange habit of pushing my pelvis forward when I’m taking my pictures.  It’s the worst possible thing I can do for my thighs, but it seems to be a habit for me.  I figure if I had a director they’d remind me to push my hips back and would fix my hair for me.


5. What would you want every person who struggles with body image to
take to heart?

That nobody is perfect.  I don’t care how perfect they look on their blogs, nobody is and I think they would tell you the same if you asked them.

Gracey

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Gracey and the Crazy Bird Scarf

Daily Outfit, 2/17/11




This outfit is the result of several events that transpired this morning.  The first thing that happened is that I wanted to get my weekly red in today.  So, I wore a red tunic with black skinnies and a grey "military-inspired” jacket.  The jacket was too short for the length of the tunic, so I decided to try a grey cardigan.  That didn’t work either and I realized it was the tunic’s fault.  That darn tunic made me look plump (not saying I'm not, but I don't always want to look it), so that was out. 

Then I thought I’d wear a red shoe – that’s a nice pop of color, right?  But what to wear it with?  All black?  Black and grey?  Bright blue?  So many questions.  And then my eye went to my beloved crazy bird scarf, that thrifted fashion miracle, and I knew I had to wear it.  The result was this outfit, which I rather like.  The jeans (Gap) fit well and look good with the red shoes (BC Footwear “Swear”).  The button down is a thrifted men’s button-down, the sweater is from Old Navy, the earrings were gifted (Thanks, Mom!) and the crazy bird scarf is crazy awesome. 






I like to imagine that the designer of this scarf had an affinity for birds and synchronized swimming and a dream to combine the two.  The end result is a scarf patterned with birds engaged in synchronized perching.  I actually think I might have bought the scarf because it was so crazy and different.  Do you guys ever do that?  Think “Holy crackers, that’s insane – I have to have it?”

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thursday; the weekend is nearly here, thank goodness. 

As always, thank you for reading!

Gracey

And a special thank you to Fergita Pepita for taking my outfit photos for me.  All that indecision was making me late for work so I had to take them at work instead of beforehand.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Perfect Midi

Daily Outfit, 2/16/11

Even though the midi-skirt trend sort of scares me, it’s something I have wanted to try.  I’d admired the midi-skirt wearing skills of both Steph at The Dashing Eccentric (here and here) and Christine at My Style Pill (here) but wasn’t positive it was something I could pull off.  I was fairly sure my height would let me wear these skirts, but I was worried about looking too frumpy.  I didn’t have any midi-skirts in my closet to experiment with, but also didn’t want to spend a lot of money on something that I might possibly not be able to wear.

So, I’ve been looking in thrift stores for the perfect midi-skirt for months now.  And a couple of weeks ago, I finally found it!  This skirt is exactly what I was looking for.  It’s the perfect length, it’s an A-line (my preferred shape) and it has a wide waist-band (I loathe skinny bands).  It’s also a lovely grey, fully lined, and has an interesting design element which my new best friend, Ferge, says makes me look thin.  Thanks, Ferge!


Even though the skirt is perfect, I still wasn’t sure what to wear with it.  As I said, I didn’t want to be too frumpy, but at the same time, I wanted to stay with the librarian feel of the skirt because that’s something I like about them.  Enter this fabulous wine-colored blouse (Mossimo/Target) and my peacock-colored cardigan (a.n.a/JC Penney), both of which look wonderful with grey.  I finished the look with wine-colored tights (Hue via Nordstrom Rack), a thin black belt (INC via Macy’s) and my ubiquitous black booties.


What about you, dear readers?  Are you midi-skirt wearers?  Any tips and tricks I should know for remixing this skirt?

Happy Wednesday, and as always, thank you for reading!

Gracey

Little Tin Soldier for Giants

This is not me…
Photo by Linda Dearie of Little Tin Soldier "Apples and Oranges"

This is Linda from Little Tin Soldier and her ridiculously cute pug, Sophie.  I am a huge fan of Linda’s blog – she uses color marvelously and many of her photos feature the adorable Sophie.  The best part though?  She creates illustrations of her outfits and they are just wonderful to see.  If you don’t read Linda’s blog, you really should stop by.

I think I’ve liked every single outfit Linda has ever posted, but this is one of my favorites for several reasons.  It’s simple in silhouette, but not boring.  It has an orange element.  And it features tonal pairing, which I personally find difficult.

Because I love this outfit, I wanted to try to recreate it with pieces for giants.  I hope the following pieces do the original outfit justice and I think they do. 


The shirt I selected is the Mossimo Applique Tank in Hot Orange from Target.  I like the neckine a lot.  I think it can be worn without a necklace and still look good.  And if you do pair it with a necklace, the applique is the same color as the shirt and won't compete with the necklace.

 

I really like the color of this cardigan and think it will pair nicely with the tank.  And the crew neckline will not compete with the scoop neckline of the tank.  This is the Cherokee 3/4 Sleeve Cardigan in Apple, also from Target.



I chose a wider-cut pants than the slim pants that Linda is wearing because they generally more flattering to wider hips.  I kept the cropped length though because it's just pefect.  These velvet pants are on sale right now at J. Jill and come in sizes small - 3x.


Linda's necklace was handmade by her, and this necklace has been handmade by Etsy seller, Shagpile.  It's made of a combination of new and vintage buttons and can be found here.

 

The flats I chose are the Jessica Simpson "Matini" flat in Iridescent Gold.  I have a couple pairs of Jessican Simpson flats and they are very comfortable.  These are available here, from Zappos.

I am especially enamored of the necklace and shoes I selected, but really like it all.  What about you, Style Nation?  What do you think of this recreation?  (Hee.  Awesome, unintentional rhyming).

Gracey

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Handmade Polka Dots

Daily Outfit 2/15/11




This top makes me indescribably happy.  Orange and polka dots?  What can be better?  I sincerely think the answer might be ‘nothing.’  Except that I thrifted it, for $2 (!), which is probably the one thing that makes it better.  And yes, it was handmade by someone which I think is fantastic.  As a non-sewer, I love thrifting handmade clothes.

I also love this pairing. Red-orange polka dots with a coral cardigan might seem like an awful lot of orange in one shot, but I think that they go together rather well.  I actually had more trouble deciding what to wear on the bottom than deciding if these colors worked together.  I think they work brilliantly together and with the fuchsia and orange scarf.  And the brown boots serve to pick up the warmth from the top of the outfit.

As I said the top is thrifted, the cardigan Gap, the scarf is Echo, the jeans are Bandolino and the boots are Born Crown “Sosie” boots.

I'm telling you, I am so loving orange this season.  What about you, Style Nation, are you ready to try orange yet?


Gracey

Orange for Everybody!

As you all know, I am very excited that orange is so big for this spring and summer.  I think that orange is a fantastic color and love to wear it.  I've also said that I think there is a shade of orange that will work on everyone.  Anne asked me for a post regarding that assertion and here it is.
 
A lot of people are afraid of orange because when they think of orange, they think bright, screaming traffic-cone orange.  And who wants to look like a traffic cone?  But orange comes in a variety of shades from pale peach to deep red-orange.  Not all shades work for everybody, but there is a shade that will work for every body.  I firmly believe anyone can wear orange if they focus on two aspects:  shade and shape.

Shade:

If you’re not wearing orange near your face, you can be more experimental in the shades you choose.  But, if you choose to wear it near your face, the following tips may help you select a shade.

If you have a very dark (think Alek Wek) or very pale skin tone (i.e. Christina Hendricks) you can wear any shade of orange you like from the most pale to the most vibrant.  Just don't forget to take your hair and eye color into account when selecting a shade.

If you have olive-to-dark skin tone, colors like tangerine, coral, mango, red-orange and burnt orange will all work for you.  If you’re olive skinned, stay away from some of the muddier oranges that could wash you out.  You want to stick with vibrant oranges in medium to dark tones.

If you are a little more pale, but not uber-pale, stick to the less vibrant, more muted orange shades such as dark peach, melon, light coral and other sunset shades.  If you’re tan, but not necessarily olive (think warm blonde not icy blonde), you can wear the lighter and darker sunset shades and even true orange easily.

Not sure where your skin tone falls?  You can also look in your closet for tips on which shade of orange to wear.  

For example, if you usually wear and feel comfortable in red, try a reddish-orange or a rust orange. 
From left: Guy LaRoche, Elene Cassis, Costume National

 And if you usually wear pastels, try peach or softer coral tones.  

From left: Shipley and Halmos, Matthew Williamson, Marc Jacobs, Christopher Kane

Like to wear yellow?  Try a yellow orange.

From left: Cynthia Rowley, Prabal Gurang, Nanette Lepore

Shape:

If you’re not wholly confident wearing orange even after you’ve found the right hue for your skin, keep it small.  A small accessory such as jewelry, a scarf, a handbag or shoes will add a nice pop of color to an outfit otherwise in your comfort zone.  Another way to try orange in small doses is to wear a pattern that has an orange element along with other colors you’re more comfortable in.  You don’t have to wear orange head-to-toe unless you want to, even if you do find the hue for you.

Also, remember that like red and yellow, orange is a look-at-me color that will draw attention to you and whatever body part you’re wearing it on.  If you’re not comfortable with your hips and thighs, I wouldn’t suggest an orange skirt.  Instead wear an orange scarf or earrings to highlight your gorgeous face. 

At the same time, if you love your legs, why not highlight them with orange tights?  Or draw attention to your fabulous pedi with some orange sandals.  Tall and loving it?  Wear a long orange gown.  Remember, you can put the focus anywhere you want.


The following are some orange items that I think are worth a shot.

Dresses:


From left: Mossimo Shirred Dress w/Tie Back - Target, Drawstring Waist Shirtdress - LOFT,  Maggy London Ikat Sheath - Nordstrom


Tops:
 
From left: Belle Flower Top - Talbots, Tucked Tank - Gap, Postcard Cardigan - Madewell


Scarves:

From left: Ursala Print Scarf - Banana Republic, In The Wind Scarf - Anthropologie, Giant Grid Scarf - Nordstrom


Accessories:

From left: Calico Juno Carnellian Drop Earrings - Max and Chloe, Sweltering Shades - Anthropologie, Skinny Fashion Belt - Banana Republic


Shoes:
From left: Anne Klein "Sabriel" - Endless, Fergie "Quench" - Piperlime, Lifestride "Cardigan" - Zappos
 
So, you’ve found your perfect orange and the perfect piece, now what do you wear it with?

If you're not sure, you can take a cue from nature.  Orange and brown, orange and khaki or orange and grey are all pairings that have been tried and proven by nature.  Orange and green are another, bolder pairing found in nature.  Once you find your shade of orange, try some of these pairings and see which works for you.

You can also turn to the color wheel for pairing options.  A rule of thumb is that colors opposite each other on the color wheel can be paired and colors next to each other can be paired. Blue is opposite orange on the color wheel, so pairing those two will work.  Depending on the shades of blue and orange you're pairing, this pairing could be high-contrast, but can also be toned down.  A soft muted orange with a navy pant is lower-contrast than a bright orange or tangerine with those same navy pants.  Orange looks good with any shade of blue, from navy to aqua so feel free to experiment.  Or wear your orange with blue jeans – comfort and contrast all at once. Green and purple are also opposite orange on the color wheel, and can also be worn with it.


Red and yellow are next to orange on the color wheel, but don't just think primary.  Think pink and orange, or mustard and rust.  Orange also pairs with itself - monochromatic pairing is very big this year.  Just keep the shoes and bag neutral to take the look from the runway to real life.

This summer I plan on wearing my orange with white, with navy, with khaki or tan, with aqua and with more orange.  However you pair your orange, remember to keep the most flattering colors in your outfit nearest your face.


Do you wear orange?  Any tips you would like to share?  And if you don't wear orange, do you think you might give it a shot?

Gracey

**Runway images from Elle.com, nymag.com and Style.com**