One of the things that bugs me about fashion is the idea that you have to constantly be buying new stuff. It seems like everyone is trying to sell you something- and that you have to have this top, or these jeans, or this purse for your life to be complete. Let me fill you in on a little secret. YOU DON’T!
Your life will not be better because of new clothes, new shoes, or new anything. In my opinion, the secret to happiness is threefold.
Finding fulfillment through work, hobbies, exercise or whatever excites you
Service to others
That’s it! Period.
What you do for that fulfillment is up to you. For me, it’s doing this blog, practicing yoga, playing tennis, volunteering, reading books, getting lots of sleep and spending time with my family and friends (not in that order!!)
So why do I bother with this blog? Because I do think taking care of myself and putting some effort into my appearance is important. And, strange as this may sound- playing with my clothes is fun for me! I love looking in my closet and seeing potential. It’s sort of like my friends who are excellent cooks who can look in their fridge or pantry and whip up a gourmet meal (I could NEVER do that! And I admire those of you who can!)
Anyhow… enough of my preaching, let’s talk about my outfit! Today’s look is my ripped jeans and a bright yellow silk tank. I used to wear this top paired with this grey cardigan, but doesn’t the blazer look a little more polished? So what if I don’t work in an office? A blazer can be worn anywhere- it adds instant style to an otherwise simple outfit. And, it helps dress up these very casual ripped jeans! My cute neutral Paul Green flats complete the look.
So- back to the idea that we have to be constantly buying stuff… my challenge for you (and me) the next month is to not buy anything new to wear. I have a ton of clothes already, so I’m going to ‘shop my closet’. Can I really last a month without buying anything? I’ll admit- this will be really hard for me. But I’ll give it a try. Who’s with me? (Do I sound like Jerry Maguire?!)
Momma got new shoes!! I’ve always loved the look of leopard shoes- and I’ve had this pair of ballet flats (on left) for years. But now I think a pointy toe might be a more current style. So… off I went to my favorite store Nordstrom Rack (I actually went online) and voila, there were the perfect shoe for me. They were inexpensive ($50), low heel, and so on trend with the d’Orsay style and cute print.
In my before look I am wearing a black t shirt under this cute cream blazer. Are you sick of black and white yet? I’m clearly not!!
The problems with this outfit are that the neckline is too high (gotta show a little skin ladies!) and the blazer tied in front is awkward. My straight leg jeans and round toe flats also date the look.
Switching out the tee shirt for this cute faux silk shirt (with gorgeous detailing- see photo below) and opening up the blazer and rolling the sleeves make for a more stylish outfit. The pointy toed leopard flats complete the look.
Well, my trip to the desert has come to an end, and it’s time to go back to Seattle. For my journey home I am wearing skinny jeans, a white tank and my black blazer.
My after look is a little more stylish than the t shirt and jacket in the photo on the left. The neckline of the t shirt is too high, the jacket is too casual to be wearing with skinny jeans (it’s better suited for a workout), and the black boots are clunky.
This blazer is more polished – and the cute necklace, bracelets and slip on loafers (which will be easy going through security) complete the outfit. I’m carrying this large black bag as my carry on. It holds my laptop, Mer-sea wrap and everything else I’ll need for the flight- and best of all, I got this cute purse at H & M for about $20 (a few years ago)!
There is a great style blog called Ain’t No Mom Jeans– I love checking it out from time to time. It’s amazing how something basic and simple as a pair of jeans can really change your look.
The jeans I am wearing on the right I bought at the Goodwill for a Halloween costume- but they are so bad, I decided to show them today so that you can see a side by side comparison of what a difference jeans can make.
It’s not helping that I tucked my tank in- but I wanted you to be able to see the 18 inch rise and the elastic waistband. That’s not all that’s bad though- the color is awful (acid wash is not my favorite) and the baggy- yet gathered at the ankle- style isn’t flattering. The one nice thing I can say about these jeans is that they were so comfy!!!
Luckily, the jeans on the left are also comfy- and a lot more stylish. The dark wash is much better- the cut is slimmer (but not too tight) and the slight flare at the ankle is a great alternative to the boot leg cut. Paired with pointy heels and this cute blazer- I’m ready for work!
If you haven’t already- do a personal jeans assessment. Are your jeans dated? When did you buy them? Are they still ‘in style’? If you think you need new ones- there are lots of great options in lots of price ranges. Shop around and try on lots and lots of different pairs/ styles/ brands… My favorites are Madewell, CABi, Old Navy, James Jeans.
After a wonderful vacation, I am now home and have to get back to work. Lucky for me, jeans are appropriate in my office, but I still want to look professional, so I like to add a blazer.
As you can probably tell (if you are a regular reader), I am a huge fan of blazers. I used to love cardigans and twin sets (yes, I am that old), so a blazer is a great alternative to that look.
The thing to be careful of with blazers is to not look too serious or too dated. So, if you have a bunch of old blazers lurking in the back of your closet- you might want to check a few things before wearing it. Are there large shoulder pads? Is the cut fitted (does it nip in at the waist or is it a boxy cut), is the length too long (aim for the waist).
Today I am wearing one of my old blazers. I bought this a few years ago at Ann Taylor- and while I love the color (it is especially popular this season), I had to cut out the shoulder pads and roll the sleeves to keep the look modern and current. I also decided to replace the stiff, formal button up white shirt with a black and gray striped t shirt. I added a black bracelet and necklace to finish the look off.
I have paired the blazer with my boot cut jeans. This is another common question I get from readers- asking how to wear boot cut jeans. Lot’s of women prefer this style to the skinny jeans- and I understand. They are a lot more forgiving for any figure flaws! I like to pair them with something slim and fitted on top and definitely with heels! Wedges are a great option.
Jeans: Nordstrom (Paige Premium Denim), T shirt: Macy’s, Blazer: Ann Taylor, Shoes: Nordstrom (Me Too)
Some of you may know that I work part time- and on days when I am meeting with clients I like to dress more professional.
To me, this is the hardest outfit to put together- and I’ll admit, I stood in my closet this morning and tried on lots of different looks.
At first I chose plain black pants and a white button down shirt- but personally, I think that looks a bit like a waiter’s uniform.
I then opted for a black shirt with a cream Chanel inspired blazer over it- this jacket is a classic piece- and in my opinion- a must have piece for every gal’s wardrobe! It works great professionally, but is also cute paired with jeans- as seen here.
To add a little spunk, I chose my leopard flats. It’s a fun mix of patterns- and since I’ll be on my feet all day, flats are perfect.
It’s a pretty typical outfit for me. I like sticking to neutral colors and classic looks- it makes me feel comfortable and that’s important!
Pants: Nordstrom (Vince Camuto), Blazer: White House, Black Market (old), Shoes: Target, Necklace: Gift
One of the things I love about the cooler weather is that you can dress in layers. This outfit is a good example of that. It started off with a pair of bootleg jeans and a plain v neck sweater… but that alone is just too boring.
So, I added a layer. I added a purple tank under the sweater, and added a necklace on top.
But that wasn’t enough so then I added this cool jacket over that- and voila- a layered and interesting outfit.
I’ve had lots of readers ask me about bootleg jeans- so here they are! They honestly aren’t my favorite style- but for work they can be a nice substitute for trousers. Notice I wore them with a heel, which is a must with bootleg!