Getting Back and Giving Back

Shopping

A few weeks ago my friend (and side-gig boss) Kimberley invited me to attend a fundraiser for Back On My Feet. If you haven’t heard of them, Back On My Feet is an organization dedicated to helping the homeless, initially by creating running groups and training them to run races but also by providing job skills training and other tools for them to use.

Since BOMF is a running organization, the dress code for the event was cocktail party clothes and running shoes!

While I could have rented a dress from Rent the Runway, I went with my trust stand-by: a black silk halter dress from J. Crew that I bought on eBay 10 years ago, back when J. Crew had a wedding dress department.

And, yes, those are my real running shoes. They’re the ones I wore to run the Miami Marathon, even!

As for the event, it was a lot of fun. I’d never been to a fancy fundraiser like that before. There was even a silent auction AND a paddle auction.

In case you’re wondering, fancy dresses and running shoes is the BEST combination for a fancy event. I was SO comfortable.

If you want to be comfortable at your next event, I highly recommend this combination. AND, if you want, you can do some shopping for a similar combo on Shopbop and save money right now during their sale. And then you can donate the money to save to a charitable cause. Maybe even Back On My Feet. Come on! Let’s make cocktail attire and sneakers a thing!

Dress 1 | Dress 2 | Dress 3 

Sneakers 1 | Sneakers 2 | Sneakers 3 | Sneakers 4 

Begins: November 21st, 2017  7:30am EASTERN TIME

Ends: November 26th, 2017 11:59 PM PACIFIC TIME

Personally, I’m always a fan of halter dresses. I know many women aren’t in love with their arms, but I think halter dresses make everyone’s shoulders and arms look good. Even if you don’t have direct overhead lighting that makes every single muscle stand out.

 

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Weaving A New Scarf [SIA Post]

Casual Friday · Office Appropriate Outfits - Fall

Last week I managed exactly one blog post: announcing this week’s Style Imitating Art challenge. Why so little blogging? Well, I was on a work trip to Oakville, Ontario (just outside Toronto) and we worked hard and played hard. Thankfully, I was still able to get my life back on track somewhat this past weekend and managed to get some time in with friends.

That’s where we took this week’s outfit photo: at the entrance to a friend’s neighborhood. The things you see in the suburbs!

For my interpretation outfit, I went with tan and a navy blue accent scarf. I recently purchased this scarf at a local craft show. Not local to Chicago? No worries. You can find them on Etsy from Jaclyn Faye.

Actually, when I first saw this week’s art, I was tempted to wear my cobalt blue top that has a gold zipper. But, believe it or not, I wore that this time last year for an SIA challenge!

So, instead, I went for my tan sweater and my new scarf.

BB Dakota Sweater (similar) | Paige Jeans (same) | STEVEN booties (similar

This past weekend I also went shopping at the latest Moonfish pop-up, had lunch with friends, and finished watching Stranger Things 2.

How about you? What have you been up to recently?

Working Forward, Weaving Anew [SIA Post]

Style Imitating Art

Happy Monday, everyone!

This week’s Style Imitating Art choice by Jen is appropriate in so many ways. It’s titled “Working Forward, Weaving Anew” and it’s a recently painted mural in the historic Brewery District of Tacoma, Washington.

Designed by lead artists Esteban Camacho Steffensen and Jessilyn Brinkerhoff, it was painted this past summer, and it’s part of a new dedication by Tacoma in supporting local Native American voices in public art.

Here’s a description of the mural, as written in the Tacoma News Tribune article “New mural on Tacoma’s Seven Seas Brewery includes Native American artists, stories,” published online here at http://www.thenewstribune.com/entertainment/arts-culture/article151068302.html :

“It depicts a landscape where Native American people, weaving cedar baskets in the shadow of Mount Rainier, are intercepted by a logging saw and split lumber. The wood and cane weavings peel off into living, flowering branches, trailing across railway tracks in a palette of blue and gold.”

Jen chose this mural and took these pictures because her SIA turn nearly coincides with the upcoming American holiday of Thanksgiving, and she wanted to choose an artwork that honored Native Americans.

I find it particularity fitting for me as well because my brain is currently swirling with a new project at work.  I’ve been asking for this project for years and I finally got it! But, it’s going to be a lot of work at the start and I’m still trying to wrap my brain around how to make everything happen. So, I will definitely be working forward and weaving anew!

If you’d like to weave this artwork into an outfit this week, don’t forget to take a picture and send it to librarianforlifestyle@gmail.com by  Tuesday, Nov. 21st, by 10 p.m. PST and she’ll include it in the round-up on her blog on the 22nd. 

A trip to Chicago’s Magic Parlour

Office Appropriate Outfits - Fall

Every so often I get an email in my inbox with an event that A. fits my schedule and B. sounds really, really neat. The chance to attend a show at Chicago’s Magic Parlour was one of those. I’d never heard of this but apparently it’s been going on for six years at the Palmer House Hilton!

Magician Dennis Watkins performs an 80 minute show for a crowd of up to 44 people which, to me, makes it all the more impressive that he’s not only able to enthrall the audience with card tricks, slight of hand, and amazing mind reading skills, but he’s able to get tons of audience interaction and volunteers.

I got to participate in a card trick that even though we got to see it twice, I still don’t know how he did it! I’ll post a short video on Instagram but, basically, I wrote my name on a playing card, Dennis got into a giant balloon, and then when I threw the deck of cards at him he skewered my card with a knife, popping the balloon at the same time. Crazy!

And, yes, Jason came with me. Even though he is a hard-core skeptic he really, really enjoyed himself. Dennis pointed out that while he is the magician it’s really all of us in the audience that make the magic happen. Suspending your disbelief for 80 minutes reminds you of when you were a kid and you believed anything could happen.

similar dress | similar shoes

We started off the evening with drinks at Potter’s Lounge at the Palmer House.  If you weren’t able to get a drink at the bar beforehand, though, they had wine, beer, and soft drinks available at the show.

The dress code is “cocktail attire” so I took the opportunity to wear this dress that hasn’t seen much love. It’s a little too short, a little too low-cut, and a little too dressy for my regular everyday wear (although, I have made it work appropriate before).

Thankfully the cold spell Chicago’s been having took a break so that I didn’t freeze to death!

Overall, I highly HIGHLY recommend The Magic Parlour. Watching a magic show is an amazing form of entertainment. You know they’re tricking you but, dang, they do it with such panache. Jokes, banter, engagement: it all takes a skilled performer and Dennis certainly fits the bill!

I was able to attend for free thanks to this here blog and my membership in the Windy City Blogger Collective, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. Jason will agree with me, unprompted, that it was a super fun evening!