Monthly Archives: October 2015

Pinterest Parallels [Vol. 14]

Casual Friday · Office Appropriate Outfits - Fall · Pinterest Parallels

First, thanks for the kind comments on my last post. Jason got some interesting news about his job location after I posted that, but it just means a slightly closer suburb. Maybe. Anyway, let’s talk about something that doesn’t involve moving and commutes.

Are you in need of a Casual Friday outfit that will also transition to after dinner fun? Then I’ve got the outfit for you! Well, technically, Pinterest has the outfit for you.


Blazer – Forever 21 (similar) | Shirt – Express (similar) | Jeans – American Eagle Outfitters (same) | Shoes – Nine West via DSW (similar) | Earrings – The Limited (similar) | Bracelet – AX Armani Exchange (same in other colors) 

I still don’t know what it is about heels, jeans and a blazer that I love so much, but it always makes me feel good. If I need a “pick me up” outfit this is what I turn to. I try not to wear it every day but, really, I probably should. Almost all of my “casual Friday” outfits I have saved on Pinterest are some variation of this. Partially because at my previous job this helped me still feel dressed up enough on Fridays. And now because I just love it.


Do you have an outfit combination that always makes you feel good?

P.S. If you’re still in need of Halloween plans, I’ll be serving up Michelada Love and Tecate at Boo Ha Ha in Bucktown on Saturday from 2-7 pm. Just look for Wonder Woman and Bat Girl.

Not always black and white

Office Appropriate Outfits - Fall

It’s a good thing I have a backlog of photos to post. Why? Because my husband started a new job on Monday and I have a feeling that his new schedule and commute, combined with the slowly decreasing daylight hours, means outfit photos won’t happen nearly as often.

And, yes, for those of you keeping track, this is his third job since he graduated with his chemistry degree less than two years ago. The first one was not a good fit and the second one was a contract job with a corporate policy of A. not hiring people with “only” Bachelor’s degrees and B. not keeping contractors for more than a year.

This new job is at least contract-to-hire but, unfortunately, his commute is going to be horrid. Which is why we’re thinking of moving to the suburbs when our lease is up.

Which breaks my heart.


Blazer – The Limited (same) | Dress – Le Tote (same) | Shoes – J. Crew Factory (similar) |Necklace – gift (similar

There are lots of reasons that it makes sense to move to the ‘burbs. It’s easier for me to commute downtown than it is for Jason to commute out there.  We could get a place with a garage where Jason can work on his car and still save money for retirement (which needs to be happening at a much faster pace).  And I’m sure there are other benefits that I can’t think of right now. Relationships are about compromise, right?

Nicole at Cedar & Rush recently made a similar move and she blogged about how sometimes we have to “give up things we LIKE, to get the things we LOVE.”

Does moving to the ‘burbs get me closer to something I love? I honestly don’t know right now. But, hey, even 5 years ago I didn’t want to move into the actual city of Chicago! Life isn’t always so black and white, you know?


Earrings make the outfit

Office Appropriate Outfits - Fall

There’s nothing too spectacular about this outfit. I’m not even wearing a necklace. My face is shiny (real life, yo) and the lighting doesn’t show off the fun gold polka dots on my shirt.

But, I wore this outfit last week to get my eyebrows waxed (again, real life) and my stylist could not stop gushing about my earrings. So, I suppose they were really the stars of the show. Literally.


Sweater – LOFT via Goodwill (similar) | Shirt – Forever 21 (similar) | Pants – The Limited (similar) | Shoes – Sole Society (similar) | Earrings – Le Tote (same) <- Don’t forget to use ERIN25 for half off your first month! 


I think I may just keep these from Le Tote. I’ve worn them at least three other times and I’m still trying to build my collection of gold jewelry.

Other things to note:

  1. I got at least three compliments on these shoes. But, I bought them back in December 2012 so they are clearly not available anymore. And, I can’t find anything really similar but I did link some cute pointy-toed flats with gold studs. Side note: when people compliment me on something I’m wearing I never know whether to tell them about my blog or not. Would that be weird?
  2.  Speaking of going to my stylist, I went last week and got my hair colored. Like, really colored. I posted photos on Instagram. I love it and it reminds me of the time I got it dyed this color in high school. That was still my favorite hair color of all time so I’m clearly pretty excited about this.  Now I just need to learn how to curl it….

Boots and Black and Bar Siena

Office Appropriate Outfits - Fall

A few weeks ago I finally got to try a new restaurant in my neighborhood: Bar Siena. I went with a group of friends and we enjoyed some yummy food and drinks. I knew I would be walking to and from the restaurant and I wanted to wear an outfit that was both cute and practical.

Hence, black dress and knee high boots.


Jacket – Langford Market (similar) | Dress – Nieman Marcus Outlet (similar) | Scarf – gift (similar) | Boots – DSW (similar

After I put together this outfit and wore it to dinner, my mom sent me some fun knit boot cuffs that would have gone perfectly with this! So, I foresee wearing this outfit again soon so that I can wear my new accessory.


Also, amusingly, two of my three friends I was meeting for dinner showed up wearing red jackets. I ALMOST wore my red trench to dinner instead of my denim jacket. Wouldn’t that have been amusing? Clearly I’m friends with some ladies with good fashion sense.

That time I tried leggings

Office Appropriate Outfits - Fall

Speaking of leggings, did you win the iPhone case from the giveaway in my post about workout leggings?

So, a few years ago, I wanted some faux leather pants but I didn’t necessarily want leggings. But this particular pair has always been a little bit big. So, when I saw that Le Tote had some faux leather leggings available to try, I thought I’d go for it.

I also got this top in the same shipment and had plans to wear them together. But when I put on the leggings, well, I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t wear leggings as pants. So, I put on my slightly-too-large faux leather pants.


Top – Le Tote (same) | Pants – Vince Camuto (similar) | Vest – Target (similar) | Shoes – Sam Edelman c/o Shopbop (same)

I don’t know if it’s because this top wasn’t quite long enough or if because I just felt underdressed for work wearing something as tight as what I wear to the gym or what exactly it was about the leggings, but I just felt uncomfortable. So, yes, I wore them around my apartment  while I finished getting ready for work and then changed at the last minute.

It’s funny; I can wear leggings at the gym or out to eat after a race or at a fitness event but I just can’t do it otherwise. Am I weird?


SIA: Surprise Leopard

Office Appropriate Outfits - Fall · Style Imitating Art

It’s been awhile since I’ve participated in a Style Imitating Art challenge, but I finally got the chance again! This outfit was inspired by a questionable one I posted on Instagram. At least one person said that to make it look less clownish I should wear leopard shoes.

So, when Jess at Animated Cardigan posted this painting I knew exactly what I was going to wear.

Screen Shot 2015-10-17 at 4.34.42 PM

Click on the image to see the full painting


Scarf – The Limited (similar) | Sweater – Forever 21 (similar) | Pants – The Limited (similar) | Shoes – Steven c/o Shopbop (similar)

I bet when you first saw that painting you thought I’d wear my leopard print skirt. Or maybe my leopard print shirt. Or maybe my leopard print scarf.  Yeah, I might have a leopard problem. But, no, I went with recreating this outfit. And you know what? The comments on Instagram were correct. I like it MUCH better with the leopard flats.


We took these photos in a shopping area in Carmel, Indiana when we were in town for Jason’s grandmother’s 90th birthday party. We had to run an errand and found this great photo location that we didn’t want to pass up. I love that there are still flowers. Helps me forget that it’s fall!

The last of the sandals

Office Appropriate Outfits - Fall

When you live in the Midwest, there comes a time every year when you realize you’re seeing the last of your sandals for a few months. And that always makes me sad.


Shirt – Gap (similar) | Skirt – The Limited (similar) | Shoes – c/o Alterre (same)

There’s also a time of year (at least for me) when I realize that my hair is getting way too long and unruly. The question is always, though, what do I do? Do I cut it short (like I did last year) or do I keep it long? The longer it is the curlier it can be so it actually requires less work. Although, by the end of the day, it doesn’t always look great.

But, let’s be honest, whose hair does look great at the end of the day? Especially if you go to the gym on lunch and, uh, don’t shower. And if you says yours always looks amazing, well, then, I hate you.

Not really. But I do envy you a bit.


Current Fitness Essentials [Giveaway!]

Fitness · Giveaways

Did you win a Le Tote gift card and earrings? Go see! Also, if you didn’t win, you can use code ERIN25 to get 50% off your first month of Le Tote

As you probably know, I’m a bit of a fitness geek. I love lifting weights, running races, riding my bike, and (begrudgingly), swimming. I go to the gym almost every day on my lunch break and in the past few months I’ve really gotten into lifting heavy with a trainer. I can currently deadlift 1.8x my body weight as well as benchpress 67% of my body weight.

Yeah, it makes me feel pretty badass.

What doesn’t make me feel badass, though, is the bruises I get on my shins from deadlifting. If you follow me on Instagram you’ve seen that I typically wear capris to the gym. Well, those aren’t really good for protecting my legs although they are good at keeping me cool.

Which is why ever since I discovered the existence of leggings with mesh insets I’ve been obsessed! I’m currently in love with about 10 different pairs and I may have already ordered a few.


Top Secret | Old Navy |  Heroine Sport | Old Navy

 Splits59  |Lucy  | Koral Activewear

Michi Pysche  |  Michi Psyloque | lululemon

Aren’t these amazing? Sigh. I’d have all of them if I could. And, you know what? Since Shopbop is currently having their Friends and Family sale I can get some of them for 25% off making my dreams (almost) come true!


Sale ends October 15, 2015, at 11:59pm PT

Another items I’ve been using in the gym is the SlimClip phone case. I received one for free to try out and I have to say that although it has its issues, when I’m lifting it’s nice not to have a regular armband constricting my biceps. I also need quick access to my phone to log my reps and weights and an armband tends to be annoying. I’ve also worn it while running and it would have worked really well except for the leash I use on my dog also goes around my waist and the two interfered with one another. If I run sans leash, though, it would work fine. No bouncing!


My only issues with the SlimClip case are 1. not all phone chargers seem to fit in the hole they have for charger access and 2. if you put your phone into the case it can be really difficult to get it out. In fact, I actually broke one of the ones they sent me trying to get my phone out. But, they have a free 365 day replacement guarantee so I can send it back for a replacement.

However, if your charger works fine (as in, it’s not a knock-off Amazon charger) then there’s no reason you couldn’t just leave your phone in the case. It’s actually a pretty nice case in and of itself.


Anyway,  if you’re interested in trying a SlimClip case, I have three to giveaway! Two pink and one yellow. The only catch is you need to have an iPhone 5. Yes, you need to be in the dark ages like me.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
  and more-5I was given the SlimClip case free of charge. All opinions are my own.

Also linking up with Bri at Work Clothes, I Suppose

Pinterest Parallels [Vol. 13]

Office Appropriate Outfits - Fall · Pinterest Parallels

I think I’ve finally figure out when to wear skirts and sweaters. I think it’s this time of year called “fall.”

Don’t mind me, just a little slow on the uptake.


Sweater – J. Crew Factory (similar) | Skirt- The Limited (similar) | Shoes – Sam Edelman c/o Shopbop (same) | Necklace – T&J Designs (similar) | Shirt – old (similar)

I’d pinned three outfits that paired camel colored leather skirts with black sweaters (this one, this one and this one) and decided to merge all of them together into this outfit that I wore on a day that started out cool and got a bit warmer in the afternoon.

Still not sure how I feel about ankle boots with skirts. Especially black ankle boots. Every time I wear them I feel self conscious all day. However, I think if I’d gone with flats this outfit would have been way too “school girl.” My husband even mentioned it looked like of a like a school uniform.


But, really, do school girls wear faux leather skirts?

September Shopping Summary


Voting is still open for your favorite outfit of September! 

In September I placed a huge order from The Limited and, in the end, didn’t end up keeping anything except for one of my favorite camisoles (order a size up because I think they run tight/small).

However, when I went to the Randolph Street Market at the end of the month for their last indoor/outdoor market I fell in love with the necklace I posted about last week as well as an awesome local clothing designer, North & Hudson.

september-shoppingPlaid baseball top – North and Hudson ($50) | Layered necklace – Guapa ($35) | BB Dakota vest – c/o Shopbop ($53 but purchased with credit) 

The owner/designer/creator of North & Hudson is the nicest woman! She not only designs everything in her Etsy shop but she makes it all herself! In fact, she gave me a discount on this top because it’s the only one she’s made so far as a sample. It’s just so perfect for casual holiday get togethers, right?

Anyway, she doesn’t have a store front, just an Etsy shop and a truck that is her mobile showroom.

Photo Sep 26, 10 08 26 AM

She drives the truck around to various farmer’s markets, festivals, and is working with this awesome new pop-up store front in Chicago called Boombox. She also wants to start an event which is like a food truck festival but for retail goods. Cool, right?

So, yes, some local shopping for sure in September. I also decided to try another white vest from Shopbop. I don’t know why I keep buying white vests in fall! I swear, though, I’m going to wear this one soon! Maybe I’ll copy this outfit from The Adored Life.

Linking up with Fran’s Budgeting Bloggers