Last night I attended the opening of the Milk Handmade Pop-Up Shop which gave me SO MANY gift ideas for this year. Including hats. If you’ve always lusted after my gray winter hat I’m here to tell you that Milk Handmade has the hook-up on similar ones.
Hat – Boutique in Sausalito | White shirt – Collide Boutique (similar) | Sweater – J. Crew Factory (same) | Jacket – Karen Kane via Macy’s (similar) | Necklace – JF&A Show (similar) | Jeans – American Eagle Outfitters (same) | Shoes – Liz Claiborne via DSW (similar)
Attending the launch gave me a great idea for a post about my favorite places to shop local in Chicago. I’ll admit, I see bloggers do gift guides all the time but in a way I feel like they are just a way for them to get clicks on their affiliate links in order to earn money. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I like money. But it feels disingenuous to create an entire post of just links.
Perhaps that’s hypocritical since I do link to similar (and same!) items using affiliate links when I post an outfit and occasionally do posts where I link to additional similar items in case you want to shop. But for some reason the gift guide to department and chain stores irks me.
So, instead, next week I’ll be sharing at least three places I am looking forward to shopping in Chicago and why they are my picks. And if you’re not in Chicago? Small boutiques might not have the best online shopping experience but I know that the ones I’m picking will be more than happy to help you over the phone!
P.S. Don’t forget there’s a giveaway going on right now!
Dress – Neiman Marcus Last Call (similar) | Turtleneck – The Limited (similar) | Scarf – gift (similar) | Booties – Liz Claiborne via DSW (similar)
Although you wouldn’t know it since the city of Chicago turned into a giant frat party on Saturday, today is actually St. Patrick’s Day. Or at least that’s what I’m told. I’m also told that if you don’t wear green on St. Patrick’s Day you get eaten by snakes. Or pinched. Or something.
Anyway, this is the outfit that H&K Style Journey and her friends chose for us to interpret for the holiday.
It took me a long time to come up with something to wear today that was inspired by this. Our Chicago temperatures are not going to allow for bare legs or short sleeves today so this summery outfit will have to wait.
Instead I decided to layer this dress with a sweater, tights, and a scarf. I don’t think this particular dress has made it to the blog before beyond a quick snapshot from last October. And I don’t think I’ve ever worn it to work. But it layers well and the faux leather accents add some extra visual interest so I have a feeling that it might show up more often now that I can think of more ways to wear it!
Dress – The Limited (similar) | Vest – Comfort Me Boutique (similar) | Tights – Express (same) | Boots – Liz Claiborne via DSW (similar) | Bracelet – House of Gemmes (similar)
So, I will fully admit that I had a different outfit planned. But then the weather people lied to me and it snowed and was cold and Style Up told me to wear a colorful dress with some faux fur and here I am.
Now that I look at these photos I think this outfit would have benefitted from my black obi belt and solid black tights but such is life. When Jason took these pictures he told me I looked tired. I am tired. I could have easily used my vest as a pillow and taken a nap on the floor of my office yesterday afternoon.
Seriously, why don’t we get nap time as adults?? Huge oversight on someone’s part.
Cardigan – Gap (similar) | Blouse – Collide Boutique (similar) | Shirt – Amazon.com (same) | Pants – Ann Taylor (similar) | Booties – Liz Claiborne via DSW (similar) | Necklace – JF&A Show (similar)
Admittedly, one of the downsides of reading personal style blogs is that I tend to fall in love with outfits or specific pieces of outfits and then I end up hunting them down. This burgundy faux leather shirt falls into that category. I basically saw this exact same outfit on Penny Pincher Fashion (aside: I’ve been loving her style the past few weeks) and when she linked to this similar shirt I had to find it.
Thankfully it’s available for under $30 on Amazon.com and I had Amazon gift certificates I could use. The downside? It’s a little boxy and has some weird creases from the packaging. But, I’m hoping that once I remember to take an iron and a damp cloth to it (remember, I hate the iron) and figure out a few other ways to wear it I’ll have found a fun shirt that didn’t break the bank.
2. I turned it into more of a sheath dress by removing the elastic from the waist and gave it a higher neckline by wearing it backward.
Yes, this is about a DIY as I get. And why did I go to all that trouble? Because I wanted to recreate today’s Inspiration Monday look.
White jacket? Yep, I got that. Animal print sheath dress? Well, kind of. I never liked the original waistband of my dress all that much so this gave me the perfect excuse to see if I could alter it. And pairing it with this jacket gave me a new way to wear each item!
By the way, this is the last week of the Take One, Pass It On challenge and I’ll be participating today and tomorrow. Wednesday I’m planning on a review of the boots I ordered from Sole Society and then I’m taking Thursday and Friday off to enjoy the Thanksgiving holiday.
Shirt – J. Crew (similar) | Skirt – The Limited (same) | Vest – Poshmark (similar) | Tights – Banana Republic (similar) | Booties – Liz Claiborne via DSW (similar) | Belt – Target (same)
Comments I’ve gotten today on my faux fur vest and plaid shirt outfit include “Nice vest!” “You look very ‘Nanook of the North today.” and “Cute vest!” I’m going to go with the idea that the Nanook comment was a compliment. Turns out this is the perfect outfit for the first day with temperatures hovering around freezing while I wait for the train. My core is nice and toasty therefore the rest of me feels just fine.
I recently purchased this skirt from The Limited and even though it’s described on their website as a “mini” it hits me at a perfect length. I bought it a size larger than normal so that it would sit lower on my hips and I suppose it also helps that I’m only 5’4”. But I have long legs! So, if you’re eying this skirt (which is currently on sale) and thinking it might be too short, I’m here to say it’s probably not. And, as you can see, it totally dresses up a Nanook of the North outfit.
My problem: So the Nine West store here had booties on sale. I loved a pair but as soon as I opened the shoebox at home, I started freaking out. Although I appreciate looking a few inches taller, these booties scare me to death LOL. What kind of outfit can I wear them with?
I bought my first pair of ankle boots in fall 2011.
Admittedly, I didn’t know what to wear with them, either! But it turned out that they are quite a staple in my wardrobe now. So here are my suggestions on how to wear ankle boots.
1. Putting them with black tights or even sheer black textured tights/nylons will help ease you into wearing ankle boots with skirts and dresses.
Dress – Nordstrom Rack (similar) | Cardigan – The Limited (similar) | Booties – Liz Claiborne via DSW (similar)
Today’s 5 Days, 5 Ways challenge is…dresses! Although, as it turns out, I don’t think I’ve worn the same dress five times in five different ways. Although, I’ve worn a lot of my dresses two or three different ways. So, I thought I’d give you a taste of how I transform summer dresses into cooler weather dresses in today’s post.
Today’s outfit was inspired by this pin which I saved when I saw it and immediately realized, hey, I have a dress that color and a cardigan that color! Why did I never think to put the two of them together?
Wearing a summer dress in the winter is actually pretty easy. Wear a shirt underneath, wear a cardigan or sweater over, or throw on a blazer. Add tights and boots or closed toe shoes and you’re done! Double the wardrobe, half the cost.
Want to see more ways I’ve worn dresses? I’ve tried to tag all of them here.
Today’s Inspiration Monday photo just screams spring. A lace dress, a colorful blazer and adorable strappy shoes? Spring. Sadly, it’s still too chilly here for bare legs and strappy shoes so I did my best to winterize my lace dress with some additional inspiration from Katie.
Still, there’s something about this outfit I’m not loving. Maybe I should have worn the jacket open and belted the dress underneath? Maybe I just like the look of a lace dress with black tights better on other people? Thoughts?
Blazer – The Limited (similar under $20) | Sweater – Old Navy (similar under $30) | Collared Shirt – TJ Maxx (similar under $30) | Pants – Ann Taylor (similar under $30) | Booties – Liz Claiborne via DSW (similar) | Necklace – Macy’s (similar under $30)
Today’s Inspiration Monday photo should have been easy. Skinny pants and a polka dot sweater? Polka dot sweaters have been everywhere this past season so of course I have one in my closet.
Of course, Hilary Duff’s is ADORABLE while mine required a bit of finagling. See, mine is actually short sleeved. So in order to give it some more interest under the blazer I added the collared button-up white shirt. I like that the sweater gives is a slightly casual vibe while the button-up and the blazer make it definitely office appropriate. And I incorporated the black and gray color scheme which promptly drove my photograph-taking husband nuts. “Can’t you wear something with color? Now we need to find a colorful background!” Mission? Accomplished.
Do you own a polka dot sweater? Don’t you love the one in the inspiration photo?
P.S. If you bought all the items linked to above (minus the shoes), your total outfit cost would be $122.41 (excluding tax and shipping). And the blazer, black pants, and collared shirt would become closet staples so you’d definitely get your money’s worth!