Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Honeymoon Stage

Honeymoon Stage

Works Cited
skirt: DIY
striped tee: gap
belt: urban outfitters
flats: steve madden

I sometimes feel like the first days of spring are like falling in love, those blissful honeymoon days before late August, when you are getting tired of your warm weather clothes and sweating constantly, and you're dreaming of a pair of jeans. But now, there is nothing better than the warm air and sunshine and digging through all your summery things.

Honeymoon Stage

P.S. I made this skirt, too! Using this pattern, of course. This is my favorite one yet.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Homage to London

Homage to London

Works Cited
gray dress: american apparel
black belt: j crew
leggings: h&m
flats: yellow box via zappos
white tee: gap
scarf: liberty of london for target

Today's outfit is a little homage to London style. While I was there, most women were in one of two uniforms: purple or black tights with black flats and a mini; or black leggings with booties or flats and a fabulous coat. They looked so chic and comfortable that I was actually seduced into buying a pair of leggings myself. Now don't get me wrong: I think of leggings more like tights than like pants and I plan to wear them that way, although I find that more and more women can pull off leggings-as-pants with the right long tee, accessories and shoes. I have a few classes and office hours today, so my goal was comfort and easy layers.

Homage to London

Obviously, the scarf is the centerpiece of today's ensemble. Before I left for London, I went to Target to check out Liberty of London and try to pick up a few presents for Rachel. I was a little under-whelmed by the women's clothing because the fabric wasn't as high-quality as I hoped, and the prices were a little steep for Target. But I did discover two AMAZING skirts in the little girls' section (debut later this week when temps rise) made of sturdy thick cotton. Score!

I also picked up this scarf (and one for my sister, see a photo of it here), which I am quickly falling in love with. It's a sturdy cotton and is going to be the perfect little extra for spring. Did you all go see Liberty of London stuff? What did you think? The patterns are seriously cool (I saw this awesome tie with rows of cars--it was too cute!).

Monday, March 29, 2010

Nose? Meet Grindstone.

Nose? Meet Grindstone.

Works Cited
checkered skirt: thrifted
black belt: j crew
embellished tee: old navy
teal tights: gap
flats: steve madden
earrings: thrifted

I am firmly of the camp that you need a vacation to recover from a vacation, especially one that has two 24-hour continuous travel days (woof). (I posted some London pictures yesterday here--feel free to check them out if you are so inclined.) While I'm feeling pretty good, it's rough getting back to work, structured clothing, and teaching after a week in leggings and pleasure reading. It's especially tough because it is supposed to be 70 degrees later this week (!!) and I am itching to wear a few things that have been hiding in my closet since the fall. Today, sadly it's still kinda chilly, so I'm taking the opportunity to wear a few last cold-weather pieces.

Nose? Meet Grindstone.

It's still pretty brisk today, so I had the chance to wear this checkered skirt I thrifted with Elena a few weeks back (p.s. check out her amazing plaid trench!). It's a little seventies--it is black, teal, pink, and yellow! Luckily the pattern is small enough that it actually looks cool instead of just bizarre. Dressing with a patterned piece is so easy--I just picked one of the colors from the skirt for my tights and kept everything else simple with black.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

A few pictures...

The British Library

If you want to check out just a few pictures I took in London, you can find them here on my flickr (be warned: they aren't very exciting!). Above is me outside the British Library, where I saw first edition handwritten copies of Mrs. Dalloway, Alice in Wonderland, and Origin of the Species. A little confession: I was so enamored I went back for a second visit the following day!

Thank you for all your sweet comments while I was away--I'm excited to get back to outfit posts this week and wear a few things I picked up across the pond. xoxo.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Vacation Brain


I'm having so much fun in London that I keep forgetting to take outfit pictures till late at night and they're coming out crummy. In any case, I'm not wearing anything particularly exciting (sneakers, jeans, and my trench so I can wander around all day long) so you're not missing much.

Updates when I get home and many long visits to your blogs which I miss being away with slow internet!

xoxo.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

When in Rome...

When In Rome

Works Cited
olive pants: next (recent london purchase)
striped tee: h&m
socks: we love colors
brogues: steve madden

Yes, I am wearing high-waisted pleated pants. And yes, I am also wearing socks with shoes. What better time to try out new bizarre trends than when you're traveling, especially in an impossibly chic country? I can't explain my sudden desire for these high-waisted pleated pants, but when I saw them in the store, I knew I had to have them. Immediately. They feel like sweatpants and fit like clown pants and yet, I feel effortless and chic in them. Please don't correct me if I'm wrong and I look like I fell out of the Barnum and Bailey truck. These are my new favorite pants, and I'm going to wear them whether they're ridiculous or not.

On another what-has-gotten-into-me note, I've suddenly developed a penchant for the socks with shoes look. In this case, I'm not so sure I liked it with these pants--it's a little trend crazy for my personal look, although I think I'll try the socks and shoes out again when I'm back home.

When In Rome

Today, I geeked out on a literary Bloomsbury tour and took about a million pointless pictures of placards announcing which authors lived where. I also made Rachel march fruitlessly around Tavistock Sq. to find the location of the Hogarth Press, which is shockingly placard-less! Tomorrow, I'm heading off on my own to explore some museums and bookstores and give Rachel a well-deserved break for tour-guiding.

Monday, March 22, 2010

London Two For One

This is a longer post than usual, because internet is a bit scarcer on this trip, so today's post is a two-in-one of what I've been up to. Thank you all for your lovely suggestions about what to do in London! I have visited Camden market (thank you, bookwaif [p.s. are you still around London?], and laima for that suggestion) and the British Museum (thanks, rad in brooklyn, chelsea, and Christine) already, and have many more plans for the rest of the week (including Tate, Courtauld, Imperial War Museum, the BL, and a dorky literary Bloomsbury tour).

Day One

London Day One

London Day One

Works Cited
striped shirt: h&m
gray sweater: borrowed from sister (gap)
jeans: gap
sneakers: tiger
blue-gray scarf: bought in camden market
trench: old navy
bag: thrifted

In an attempt to ward off jetlag, Rachel and I went out exploring in the sunshine on Sunday. I'd already been up for about 20 hours, and I was aiming to make it until the evening to sleep in the hopes that my internal clock would adjust (and so far: success!). My main goal for the day was comfort--we did lots of walking around and I needed comfy shoes and easy layers. You don't often see me in sneakers on this blog, so this is a little different for me. Tigers are easily my favorite sneakers--light, easy, comfortable, and a little retro. And you can't go wrong with stripes.

London Day One

On Rachel
skirt: handmade (the double to the one I made here)
sweater: j crew
scarf: liberty of london for target
boots: jeremy's in berkeley

This is the second skirt I made out of the extras from the green polka-dotted fabric. I love the little bow at the side and the way Rachel wore it with varying shades of brown. The liberty of london for target scarf (a little housewarming present for my sweet sister) is the perfect touch--the pattern subtly picks up on the skirt.

Day Two

London Day Two

Works Cited
gray v-neck: american apparel
gray sweater: borrowed from rachel (gap)
striped scarf: camden market
skirt: american apparel
belt: j crew
tights: leggs
maryjanes: dansko

I'm looking both ways because shortly before this picture was taken, Rachel and I were almost hit by a car zooming down the road--eeps!!! This morning as we were getting dressed and I was piling on gray layer after gray layer, I wondered whether I should really do gray-on-gray-on-gray. Rachel read my mind and said, "Is there any such thing as too much gray?" No, I don't think there is.

London Day Two

On Rachel
jeans: true religion
jacket: recent h&m acquisition (don't you love?)
blue-gray scarf: mine, from camden market
sneakers: converse

With a little persuasion, Rachel bought this rad jacket from h&m--I LOVE it on her, and almost bought one myself (but seeing as I already have a spring coat, I just barely restrained myself). After exploring the British Museum, we did a little shopping on Oxford Street. I don't know what's come over me (maybe the jetlag?) but I bought a pair of leggings, something I never thought I would actually wear. There's something about hordes of chic Londoners zooming around in black leggings and little boots that's making me seriously rethink their coolness.

Whew! Enough for today! More adventures to come soon...

Friday, March 19, 2010

Greener Pastures

Greener Pastures

Greener Pastures

Works Cited
tank dress: american apparel
striped shirt: gap
scarf: target maybe?
tights: hue
flats: palladium
sweater: uo

Thank you all so much for your sweet comments on my post yesterday--they made me feel so much better. I am feeling much repaired today after some frozen yogurt, a bike ride, some time in the sun with Christopher, and your sweet comments. Onto happier things, like my spring break trip. You won't believe this, but I'm going to LONDON tomorrow!

Greener Pastures

I'm visiting my sister for a week (thank you for the Christmas tickets, Mom and Dad!) in London. She's living in the Bloomsbury district, and I'm planning on stalking all of Virginia Woolf's old haunts, visiting the British Library, and eating my weight in tikka masala. And, of course, lots of time with my brudder. I should still post here and there (amazingly, there's even internet in England! What doesn't it have?), so check back next week if you want to hear tidbits about my trip (and see what I'm wearing, of course).

Have you been to London? Do you have any suggestions for fun things to do? xoxo.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Dark and Gloomy

Dark and Gloomy

Works Cited
gray tee: target
beige tank: old navy
jeans: j crew outlet
purple flats: target
amazing necklace: olive & a

Did you ever read Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No-Good, Very Bad Day? In the book, Alexander doesn't get the shoes he wants and there's gum in his hair and his brothers are mean to him. I am having the grown-up version of the terrible horrible no good very bad day. I got an article rejected, a job rejection (from last week, even with all your good thoughts! sigh...), a freelancing client who won't pay me, and one of my advisers got a job offer at another school and is thinking of going and taking my roommate with him! Maybe I should move to Australia...

Dark and Gloomy

But because plane flights to Australia are expensive, I will do other things to cheer myself up, like wear this pretty necklace. And take broody pictures on the front porch.

Dark and Gloomy

Happily, I think bad things tend to come all in one blow, so I'm fairly certain I'm due for very good luck soon. Maybe I will stumble upon an undiscovered well filled with gold, or I'll find a Picasso next time I'm at the Goodwill, or all my students will skip into my classroom on Friday completely prepared for discussion....a girl can dream, right?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Kiss Me, I'm Irish?

Kiss Me, I'm Irish?

Kiss Me, I'm Irish?

Works Cited
mustard sweater: j crew (gift)
brown tank dress: american apparel via amazon
belt: thrifted
green tights: gap
boots: indigo

Recently, I found a very active Latvian chat room with a long stream of comments on my blog. Curious, I plugged it into Google translator (perhaps the worst translator on the planet?) to discover (at least I think) that they were making fun of my posture! Or my feet, I couldn't actually tell which. So in honor of my Latvian friends, I tried to stand up straight today.

Kiss Me, I'm Irish?

Another amazing $9 tank dress (thank you, Amazon; thank you, Sal). In honor of St. Patrick's day, I'm wearing (a little bit of) green--these awesome sweater tights from Gap. Can I give an amen to the various bloggers (Clare, Kyla, Sal) who have mentioned that they'll be sad to see tights go? Clare's post last night on the leg-enhancing properties of tights almost had me wishing winter wasn't quite over. I'll definitely miss tights when winter goes. And you can add to that list: cozy sweaters, my boots, big cashmere scarves, funny headbands, long sleeves. We've had a good run of it, winter. I'll miss you.

Kiss Me, I'm Irish?

P.S. Are you Irish? I am, and I spent a semester abroad in Galway, which is on the west coast of Ireland. It's very rainy there, and on St. Patrick's day, they have a huge parade in the rain and people eat green pancakes--yum!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

In My Jeans

In My Jeans

In My Jeans

Works Cited
jeans: 7 brand from ireland, skinnied by me (and my mother)
white tee: hanes
blue sweater: uo
belt: j crew
leopard print flats: target
headband: anthro (gift)

I don't often wear jeans on this blog because half the time I end up hating how they photograph on my body, even though in real life, they are my go-to weekend wear. Recently, I've been wanting a pair of super-skinny, cropped jeans for spring. These are jeans I've had since I studied abroad in Ireland and until last weekend, they were super flared and a smidge too long. Enter my new sewing machine!

Directions for making old flared jeans skinny and cropped:
1. Put jeans on inside out, add some pins where you want to skinny the leg
2. Shove jeans into sewing machine and sew down a skinny leg
3. Break your sewing machine needle which is not set for denim
4. Cut off excess fabric
5. Realize newly-skinnied jeans are far too long.
6. Botch attempt at hemming so that one leg is longer than the other, and the other leg's seams no longer match up.
7. Cry in frustration.
8. Hand jeans to mother, who fixes them beautifully.

See? It's easy!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Help!--What do you think of these shoes?

Like my tights? Don't forget to enter to win a pair of your own from we love colors. The giveaway ends at the end of the day. Enter here!

Shoe Indecision

Shoe Indecision

Works Cited
red-orange skirt: american apparel
white button-up: target
gray sweater: uo
belt: anthro
tights: we love colors
shoes: thrifted

This weekend, I went thrifting with Elena of caffeinerd, which was so much fun (see the lone photo we snapped here)! I picked up a few fantastic pieces (like a huge blue and white scarf and some plaid pants--yes, they are amazing) and a few I'm still undecided on, like these shoes:

Shoe Detail

I can't decide whether these are totally grandma or kind of awesome. So I need your help! Please be brutally honest! They were only $3, so if they're awful, I'm not going to cry about it. Do they work?

P.S. Like my tights? Don't forget to enter to win a pair of your own from we love colors. The giveaway ends at the end of the day. Enter here!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Spring Layers

Start with pants so old you bought them the last time high-waisted pants were in style; add a sweet striped button-up and the maryjanes you've worn the last ten days running.

Spring Layers

Add gray stripes on top of gray stripes.

Spring Layers

Plus a springy trenchcoat and a big cashmere scarf (because hey, it's still a little cold).

Spring Layers

Works Cited
black pants: gap (circa 1998)
button-up: forever 21
belt: j crew
gray sweater: filene's basement
maryjanes: dansko
trench: old navy
scarf: pashmina store online

I love today's outfit! Admittedly vanilla, totally comfortable, and makes me feel pretty and classic and completely like myself. I'm so glad spring seems to be here!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Spring Bird

Spring Bird

Spring Bird

Works Cited
navy tank dress: american apparel ($9 via amazon)
olive sweater: j crew
belt: mommed
tights: courtesy of we love colors
boots: indigo
trench coat: old navy

Things I love: a trench coat for spring, bright colored tights, a new american apparel tank dress for only $9 from amazon (thank you, Sal, for the tip off), bright red nails, the brick walls downtown.

Spring Bird

I'm spending the morning holed up in a coffee shop preparing for my afternoon classes and for something more exciting: an interview for an assistant director position of one of our grad teaching programs. I'm going to run home and change into grown-up interview apparel before I head to school this afternoon, but I figured a picture of me in my hodgepodge study apparel would be more interesting than a picture of black pants and a button-up. Readers, will you please send good thoughts my way this afternoon? I'm kind of nervous for the interview!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Willpower Fail

Willpower Fail

Willpower Fail

Works Cited
striped skirt: modcloth
tights: leggs
pink tee: j crew outlet
maryjanes: dansko

Okay, I caved. I bought the pretty striped skirt. And whoa, is it colorful!! I'm not much for super bright colors, but I'm going to rock this today, even if I know it'll get me a look or two.

Willpower Fail

One funny thing I've noticed about blogging is that I'm a lot more courageous about what I wear, and I mind a whole lot less if an outfit doesn't work. I used to get caught up worrying that someone would judge or think something didn't fit right, was too bright, too short, too long, too fashion-y. Now, I don't care nearly as much. I think about getting dressed as something fun and extremely temporary, and I don't let an imperfect outfit get to my head because hey, there's always tomorrow.

P.S. Yes, it was super windy this morning!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Giveaway: We Love Colors!

The lucky winner is # 16: Ana from Toil and Trouble. Congrats!



I'm so excited to tell you about today's giveaway from We Love Colors, the amazing people behind my favorite tights. They have super-thick, brilliantly-dyed tights in 51 amazing colors (as well as a melange of other hosiery, fishnets and socks). Their tights are extremely well made, have beautiful colors, and are super comfortable (I am a complete convert).

We Love Colors has offered a pair of tights to one lucky reader (in her or his choice of style, size and color).

To enter, you must:
Follow this blog and leave a comment.

For extra chances to win, leave a comment if you:
Follow we love colors on twitter
Friend we love colors on facebook
Follow the we love colors blog
Subscribe to the we love colors newsletter (bottom left of this page)
Subscribe to the we love colors trends blog

The giveaway will be open until the end of the day Monday, March 15 and I'll announce the winner next Tuesday. Good luck! xoxo.

Monday, March 8, 2010

I am Sew Clever

I Am Sew Clever

I Am Sew Clever

Works Cited
skirt: i made it! myself!
white tee: gap
belt: mommed
flats: palladium
headband: i made it, too

Sorry in advance for all the exclamation points and for the horrible title pun, but I can't resist because I am high on my own sewing success! I sewed this skirt! By myself! And it's wearable! It's a miracle! I used this pattern, of course, like Elaine did (hers turned out a little less poofy...which is my aim for my next attempt).

And check out the pockets!

Pocket Detail

And the headband I made to match the skirt's lining!

Headband Detail

I am so happy, I have visions of hundreds of skirts in all different colors and patterns, dancing through my head. My next project is sewing my sister an identical skirt with the generous leftovers. We can look like twins when we live 3000 miles apart, don't you think?

Stay tuned for an exciting giveaway tomorrow--and enter Elaine's giveaway if you haven't yet!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Grown-Up Attire

Grown-Up Attire

Grown-Up Attire

Works Cited
pink sweater: anthro (on loan from sister)
black button-up: erin featherstone for target
gray skirt: thrifted
black belt: j crew
tights: leggs
maryjanes: dansko

This afternoon, I'm a commentator on a conference panel so I wanted to feel like myself, but a little more grown up. Because the weather is (finally) warming up, I took advantage of the last opportunities to wear my thick wool skirts (this one I thrifted for $2--amazing!). I love the way the button-up black top and black belt look with the gray, but I wanted a little bit of color, too. To spice up the neutral palette of gray and black I added this quirky embellished coral sweater at the very end and I love the way it turned out. Not too buttoned-up, not too out-there. Just right for scary public speaking!

Sweater Detail

And check out this awesome Essie nail polish I won from a giveaway over at S.S. Dobbs. I think it may be the holy grail perfect light pink polish I've been looking for forever.

Stay tuned for a very exciting giveaway coming up next week! xoxo.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Lazy Day

Lazy Day

Works Cited
chambray shirt: old navy
gray sweater: h&m (circa 2004)
jeans: j crew outlet
flats: from ireland (ASDA maybe?)
scarf: don't remember

My Thursday class got canceled, and I have an entire day free from campus to do research! Commuting to and fro sucks up a lot of my time and it is a rare luxury to spend an entire day reading and writing. I went pretty plain jane today, but I'm loving the lines of this look--a slightly shrunken sweater layered over my extra-long chambray shirt (one of my new favorite pieces...it's so soft and loose I feel like I'm wearing a pajama top). The simple color palette, easy flats, and stretchy jeans are just perfect for a long day of reading Bad Modernisms.

Lazy Day

P.S. Thank you for all the terrific suggestions on black cardigans yesterday. Finding the perfect black cardigan is like the hunt for the holy grail, wouldn't you say?