Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Playing dress up - Halloween inspiration

So I know I said I was going to do a wrap-up on my 10x10 challenge, but I basically did it in the last post, and didn't have that many takeaways anyway, so I'm going to bow out of that post.  I might try a similar challenge soon though, and put a bit more time into planning and thinking through it all, and hopefully get it up on the blog.

With that out of the way, it's October, and I'm thinking about my halloween costume uncharacteristically early this year.  I know, I'm probably a tad old to still be playing dress up, but I really, really love costumes.  It's even more fun now that I am actually semi-proficient at making things, so can make something pretty cool, but I generally start thinking about these things like a day or two in advance, so I never do anything too fancy.  I brought back some props for an idea I've had for a while from my trip to Thailand last year, but I need to be in better shape for that costume, so I'm saving it til next year.  It won't be too scandalous, don't worry, I just don't want love handles.  :)

I've been tossing around several ideas in my head over the past few weeks trying to pin down what to do instead, and I think I've landed on some form of a dirndl costume.  I initially thought about doing a dual-purpose renaissance-y costume, so I have one handy the next time I find a Renaissance festival, but I'm liking the idea of German beer girl instead.  Although, my costume from my last festival does have some overlap I think:

I am wanting my dirndl this year to be a little more high-fashion, if there is such a thing though.  I've perused pinterest and come up with several inspiration ideas:

Check out the smocking (?) on the apron!


(Sources:  1-3, 4, 5

I have no idea what colors or what exactly I want it to look like yet, so I have my work cut out for me!

Thursday, September 29, 2016

10x10 Fall Remix - Day 10 - I made it!

I made it - day 10 of the 10x10 fall remix challenge!  There were some flip flops along the way, but overall I'm happy that I stuck to the spirit of the challenge, and made it work.  I am super excited to get into the rest of my closet again tomorrow though. :)  I'm reaching here for today's outfit, and I'm still not thrilled with it.  The sweater is a bit fussy, and the pants are just an odd color, I've decided.  

1)  Oatmeal sweater - I wore this on Sunday as well (no photographic evidence), but that time I just wore a camisole under it.  I actually like it better with the button-down, but it's still fussy feeling to me, and I'm not sure I like it too much.  I like it in theory, but every time I wear it I have to keep pulling and tugging.

2) Uniqlo white buttondown - from day 9

3) Grey pants - from day 3

I've done this sort of exercise on paper several times, and I'm glad I followed through and actually did it in real life.  I've learned I'm not totally ready for a super small wardrobe, but I do need to practice mixing things up a bit and working on my styling.  It's hard sometimes since I work from home so much, and end up in a tee and jeans, but I want to put a bit more effort into it.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

10x10 Fall Remix - Day 9!

So I fell off the bandwagon for daily posting, but I promise I kept up with the remix challenge!  To recap a bit:

Day 4, Friday - black tee, knit skirt, black strappy sandals
Day 5, Saturday - black tee, jeans, brown corderoy jacket (technically #11, but outerwear, so I'm not counting it), and red/yellow shawl
Day 6, Sunday - oatmeal sweater, jeans, lace-up brown booties 
Day 7, Monday - black tee, jeans, black/green/turquoise shawl
Day 8, Tuesday - white long-sleeve tee, jeans (feeling sick so wanted a cozy tee)

We're almost at the finish line though, so I figured I would finish strong.  Today I went into the office, so dressed up a bit.

1)  J. Jill green sweater tank - from day 2.  I was thinking I would wear this one more than twice, but that's all it made it.  As it finally got cooler, I was able to take advantage of it's layering ability, and wear it as a sweater vest.

2)  Uniqulo white button-down - Full disclosure, I was supposed to wear this yesterday with jeans and a scarf, but I wasn't feeling well, so I just wore a comfy tee instead.  Theoretically it is its second appearance though, which again, I thought it would make it in more.  I might still wear it in tomorrow's outfit as well, I haven't decided.  I have a mixed relationship with button-downs.  I was a teenager in the 90s, and I basically wore button-downs every day, particularly of the plaid variety.  I stopped wearing them for quite a while, and I'm slowly reintroducing them into my wardrobe.  They just don't feel very feminine to me, I think, and I'm trying to fem up my wardrobe a bit.

3)  Me-made knit skirt - I wore this one on Friday with a black tee, which my husband was like, why are you so dressed up to work from home?  A prime example of me getting dressed just to optimize my 10 items!  I personally think it's a pretty casual skirt though, particularly since I never got around to hemming it (really finicky fabric).  I love the print, but the non-hem and general fussiness of the fabric (I'm always having to adjust it) means I don't wear it very much.  I think I will probably end up getting rid of the skirt after this experiment, but I always like to give things a shot.

4)  Lace-up brown booties - This was another "cheat" sort of thing, in that I brought these booties back into the mix.  I only wore my second pair of black sandals once, so I don't think it's too bad of a cheat. :)  This is a really new look for me to wear booties with a skirt, and overall I think it's not too bad.  I'm thinking about getting a pair of black booties to wear with tights and skirts this winter, so this was sort of a trial run for that.  The one thing I worry about with it is that being a shortie, it chops me off a bit, but especially if I wear black tights with black booties it won't be too noticeable.

5)  Accessories:

  • Sundance tiny silver hoops - from day 3.
  • Green pearl necklace - I got this one from my mom, and I probably wouldn't have picked it out myself, but I wear it all the time.  It's just one of those things that goes with everything.

Closing Time!

I've had my little Etsy shop Totables for 6 years now, and I've finally decided to pull the plug.  It's been a lot of fun, but I had much more free time when I first started it, and I've shifted a lot more to personal sewing instead.  Priorities, priorities...

The biggest thing that has stopped me from closing shop in the past (I've been debating doing it for a few years now) has been what to do with all the stuff I currently have!  Pretty much everyone in my family has received multiple bags as presents at this point, so I decided to just do a half-off sale!  I'm not sure I will actually sell much, so I may end up with the same problem as before, but it's worth a shot, right?


Side note:  time to switch to being a redhead again?

Thursday, September 22, 2016

10x10 Fall Remix - Day 3

Day 3 of the Un-Fancy Fall Remix challenge I actually went into the office, so had to dress up a bit more!

1) Everlane black sweater vest - from Day 1

2) J. Brand grey cropped chinos - I switched these out from my tan cropped pants, because they went better with my warmer temperature switches.  I bought them a while ago from a consignment store (don't remember which), and I've been on the fence about them a bit.  They fit nicely, but there is something about the color that I'm not a huge fan of, maybe I would like it to be a cooler grey?  I normally wear them rolled at the bottom (you can still see my roll lines), but I actually do like them better straight.  Maybe that was the problem!  I also have a weird problem where I can't ever figure out what shoes to wear them with if my top doesn't have black in it (so I can wear black shoes).  I have some issues with color-matching that I've been working through the past few years. :)

3)  Nine West black heeled sandals - I think I got these from Twice, as I've had them a while.  I like them a lot, as they dress me up a bit, but are still super comfy.  I do not like to wear them with dresses though (something about the point at which they hit makes me feel like they chop me up to much), so I pretty much wear them exclusively with cropped pants.

4)  Accessories - I actually intended to wear a black/grey/white silk scarf I bought in Thailand with this outfit, and it was going to tie all together and be awesome.  Unfortunately, the grey was way more blue than my pants, and it just looked off.  I even debated on putting on a different outfit, but instead went with some of my tried and true jewelry pieces:
  • Sundance tiny silver hoops - I love Sundance jewelry, as it is typically has an artisan feel.  I have these earring both in gold and silver and I wear them to death, as they are my go-to simple earrings.
  • H&M long silver drop necklace - This necklace is the opposite of artisan, as it was $5 from H&M, but I equally love it and wear it to death.  I recently replaced the chain, as the "silver" was wearing off, but the pendant is going strong.  I think part of the reason I love it so much is that it reminds me of a silver teardrop I wore all the time in high school/college.  I don't remember  all the details, but I believe my aunt's dentist had made it out of silver left over from fillings, which is a little bizarre now that I think about it, but it was hand-crafted!  I lost it on a trip to the Netherlands my sophomore year of college and I still miss it dearly.
  • Black/silver watch - from day 2.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

10x10 Fall Remix - Day 2

Another work from home day today, and on the hotter side, so not the most elaborate of outfits, but that's more my speed anyway.  I do have my church small group to go to tonight, so I will leave the house and spend time with other humans, so I did make a bit more effort than yesterday though!

1)  J. Jill green sweater tank - I scored this one at Goodwill this summer, and I've worn it a bunch.  I'm weirdly not loving it as much in the photo though, what do you think?  I'm hoping it will be pretty versatile with layering, so stay tuned as to how else I wear it!  I've been trying to make a muted green one of my neutrals for several years, and I'll get there eventually.

2) Madewell dark skinny jeans - from Day 1

3) Franco Sarto black strappy sandals - from Day 1

4) Accessories - I realized I didn't wear any yesterday, but they are a key element of mixing things up, since they don't count towards the 10 items.  Today's accessories include:

  • Green dangle earrings - these were a gift from John several years ago (from KUKLAstudio) and I don't wear them very much.  I think they are really cool though, and I like to wear them when I have short hair.  One of my goals with this challenge is to mix things up with accessories.
  • Black/silver watch - I've written about this one before, but I bought it forever ago at Target and I love it dearly.  At this point it's on watchband at least #4, and I've put way more money into it in watchbands than its original purchase price ($15 maybe?), but it's worth it.  

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

10x10 Fall Remix - Day 1!

I'm finally diving into the capsule wardrobe world!  Well, more like dipping my toe in, but hey, it's something.  I'm playing along with the Un-Fancy Fall Remix, which means I selected 10 items (including shoes!) and can only wear those 10 items for 10 days.  The idea here is to force me to try new combinations and get outside my normal wardrobe box.

I was going to do an initial post showing my 10 items, but after I gathered them all together, I sat down to figure out my outfits, and realized I was too optimistic as to whether or not fall had actually arrived, and I had to switch out a few of the heavier items for more appropriate items for 85+ degrees, because summer just refuses to leave.  So instead I will just post a daily photo, because today is Day 1, and do a summary at the end.

Without further ado - today's outfit!

These first few days will be pretty simple, since it will be close to 90 degrees out, and I have to keep cool.  I'm working from home today, so it's a simple basic outfit.

1)  Black sweater vest from Everlane - This is a great classic that I bought this summer and have been wearing a ton.  I love the split hem, and it gives a bit of polish that a basic tank or tee just can't quite do, while still being lightweight and cool.  I love the concept of Everlane (transparency and quality), and have tried ordering multiple things over the past few years, but this is the only garment I've kept from them.

2)  My favorite pair of jeans - dark skinnies from Madewell.  I bought them second-hand a while back, I believe from the now-defunct online store Twice.  They fit me so perfectly.  Madewell and Joe's Jeans are my go-to brands for jeans.

3)  Franco Sarto black strappy sandals - I've waxed poetic about these on the blog before, so they are no stranger here.  This is actually my second pair, because I wore my first pair basically 2 out of 3 days in the warmer weather for 2 years and wore them out.  When I went shopping for a new pair of black sandals, I tried others, but these still won out and I got my second pair, which is also at the end of their second summer, and they are still going strong.  I'm shooting for three summers for these!