April 16, Shop your Closet

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. 

  1. Finding fulfillment through work, hobbies, exercise or whatever excites you
  2. Service to others 
  3. Gratitude 

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?!)

Jeans- Seven

Top- Banana Republic

Blazer- Nordstrom

Shoes- Paul Green

March 24, Spring-ifying Your Outfit

I might have just made up the word Spring-ifying, but hopefully you know what I mean. Now that it’s Spring- our clothes should reflect that.

Take today’s outfit. I’ve chosen ripped white jeans and this sweet little patterned top. In the photo on the left, the black sweater and black shoes are ok- but to me they seem a little dark and wintery. So, to ‘spring-ify’ my look, I replaced the dark sweater with a cute grey one. It will still keep me warm, but just looks a little lighter. Same with the shoes. Instead of the dark black loafers (which I love by the way), these neutral strappy wedge sandals are more appropriate for spring. Now I just need to find time for a pedicure.

A tank layered under the top will also provide warmth.
Love this pattern. Sweet, feminine and definitely spring-ish!

Jeans- these are from Value Village and I distressed them myself. See how here!

Top- Nordstrom, Vince Camuto

Shoes- Clark, these are so old I honestly can’t remember when I bought them.

Grey cardigan- Banana Republic, this one is old as well.

Are you noticing anything about my clothes? They are old! I am wearing stuff that I bought maybe 5-10 years ago. You do not need to go out any buy new clothes all the time. Shop your closet!

March 22, Bomber Jacket

I am a big fan of jackets. I own a LOT of them. I think they are the perfect item to add to any outfit to keep warm.

First off, I love the jacket on the left. It’s an olive green field/ military style jacket. Paired with the right top and jeans, it can be a cute outfit, like when I wore it here. However, today, this look is not doing much for me.

So I replaced the field jacket with this cute olive bomber (similar) This jacket is made out of Tencel, which if you aren’t familiar with it- you should be. It is made of wood pulp (earth friendly) and is one of the softest fabrics out there. So comfortable to wear! If you are thinking about buying a jacket to add to your wardrobe- consider getting a green bomber. The color is a great neutral that can be worn with everything- and it is a stylish alternative to a cardigan.

I then replaced the high neck white tee shirt with this cute scoop neck tank. Working with the casual vibe, I switched out the black jeans for my ripped/ ankle length pair and then slipped on my black and grey tennis shoes instead of the heavy black boots. To complete the outfit, I threw on this fun necklace that adds a little interest.

Jeans- Zara

Tank- Gap

Jacket- Kenneth Cole

Shoes- Vince, Nordstrom Rack

March 17, St Patrick’s Day

Instead of a before and after post for my OOTD, I’m showing 2 different versions of my St. Patrick’s Day outfit. And a quick shout out to my big sister for her Birthday! Happy Birthday Erin, I love you so much! You inspire me daily.

The outfit on the left is my normal, safe option. A cute Ireland tee shirt, ripped jeans and white tennis shoes. Festive, comfortable and easy. But then I decided to try something totally different (and a bit of a risk for me), and pair the green shirt with my geometric skirt and black peep toe heels. To be honest, I think it’s kind of fun! I love the colors together, and the skirt is such a bold, fun eye catching pattern. Which outfit do you prefer?

I bought this a few years ago at Target for a St. Patrick’s party we were going to. I think it’s so cute, but I only wear it once a year!

Skirt- Target

Jeans- Value Village, and Distressed by me (here’s how!)

Tee Shirt- Target

Shoes- Franco Sarto, Marshalls

March 9th, Black and White Flannel

A cute outfit for the weekend is a casual flannel and some ripped jeans.

The problem in the before look is the ripped jeans are not flattering at all. The buttoned up flannel looks dull this way, and the heavy black boots add weight to the outfit.

In the after version, the skinny jeans are more flattering, and to improve the boxy look of the flannel- I tucked it in and rolled the sleeves. Similar to this outfit here. I also replaced the dark boots with these cute black slip on loafers. These are a great spring shoe- and so comfy!

As for my ripped jeans I did not make them myself (as I did here)- they are 7 for Mankind, and I love them. They have a lot of elastic in them, so they are stretchy and comfy… and I got them at Nordstrom Rack (my favorite store!)

Jeans- Nordstrom

Flannel- Old Navy

Have a great weekend!

March 7, How to Distress your Own Jeans

Hey friends! I am SUPER excited about today’s OOTD post. I am going to show you how to distress your own jeans. Trust me, I am not a very crafty person, and yet if I can do it, anyone can! So… if you have a pair of old jeans laying around, and you’ve always liked the look of distressed jeans but didn’t want to spend a fortune on them, this post is for you!

First off, here is what you will need to do the job: A pair of good scissors (fabric scissors are ideal), a marker (or pencil) and a pair of tweezers. That’s it!

I label my scissors ‘fabric only’ to keep family members from using them for other things!

Start by trying on your jeans and bending down and marking the top and bottom of your knees (or wherever you want the distressing/ holes to be).

Awkward photo, but wanted to show how to mark the knees! 🙂 Don’t do it while standing, you will be off.

Once you’ve marked where you want to distress, take your scissors and cut a tiny slit in the jeans. Be careful not to cut too large of a slit.

I cut a little above my mark- that’s ok! I’ll end up cutting that out later.

After the first cut, cut as many more strips as you want- depending on the size of the hole you want. Your first slit should be small (about an inch), then cut bigger strips towards the middle, then back to small cuts. You are making sort of diamond shape.

Notice my strips aren’t even- and they are biggest in the middle of the area. I also cut out holes at the top and bottom (where my knees start and end).

Now, this is the tricky (and time consuming part). Flip the strip over and use tweezers to carefully pull out the strings that run the length of your jeans (up and down). Basically, your jeans are woven threads and you are removing the vertical threads. For some reason, it’s easier to do it with the fabric twisted. See photo below.

This takes a long time… be patient!

Leave the horizontal threads (and it’s ok if some rip or tear, this just adds to the distressed look). You can also just cut out a giant hole- if you don’t want the threaded look. Keep doing this until you are happy with the results. Then, throw your jeans in the washing machine and wash and dry a couple of times- this will really add to the distressed look. You can also use a sandpaper block to roughen up the pockets or hemline.

Using sandpaper creates even more distressing!
And here they are! The final look- after being washed!
The brighter camo sweatshirt with the cute white stripes on the sleeves and the ripped jeans make for a more interesting outfit!
Sweatshirt is from AE, and it’s on sale! Jeans are from Vallue Village, they were $12

A couple of tips-

  1. Chose an inspiration pair to use as your guide. (See photos below)
  2. Go to the Goodwill or Value Village and buy a cheap pair of jeans to do this to! You won’t feel bad if it doesn’t work- although truthfully, this is so easy- you can’t go wrong!
Nordstrom
Nordstrom
American Eagle

March 3, Date Night

Today’s OOTD is what I wore last night on a date with my hubby. It was actually a double date- we went with another couple to a local Indian restaurant. My friend, Angela, is always super stylish- so I wanted to be sure to wear something special.

Being a fan of neutrals, I choose black and cream for my outfit. However, in the photo on the left- the black dress pants are fine- but they are way too long and puddle at my feet. The plain cream shirt with the high neckline and the boring black ballet flats don’t add any interest to this outfit.

Swap out the dress pants for ripped skinny black jeans, and this cute v neck sweater (and black lacy bralette) replaced the boring shirt. My favorite part of this outfit is my shoes. These snakeskin slingbacks add a fun pattern to an otherwise plain outfit. Other details to complete the look are the gold belt, a couple of necklaces and bracelets.

You don’t have to do the half tuck!

This sweater is from a local in home boutique, OC Style- super affordable and chic clothes! Follow her on instagram @shopocstyle
This bralette is from Target! So comfy, I’ve actually slept in it!

I’ve worn these cute ripped black jeans a few times- like here and here!

Jeans- Zara

Sweater- OC Style

Shoes- Frano Sarto, Nordstrom Rack