Tag Archives: dress

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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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! 

Booties and a dress plus a vest is best

Office Appropriate Outfits - Fall

One of the best parts of having a friend with a shop full of clothing is getting to play dress up when I go over there. A few weeks ago, I was wearing this dress and booties when I showed up at Annabelle’s. I found this awesome duster vest in her racks and immediately put it on.

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Dress from Moonfish (similar) | similar booties | Vest from Belle on the Roe | similar necklace

I ended up loving this outfit so much that I borrowed the vest and wore it to a Chicagogrammers outing at Joy District. Amusingly, the style name of this vest is “Joy”. So, yes, I wore a Joy to Joy District.

Thanks to Maggie for pointing that out.

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I have not yet added this vest to my closet, but there’s a good chance it will happen. I feel like a vest just adds that little extra something. And when it’s not quite cold enough to break out the puffy vests a lightweight one like this can be that perfect “completer piece”.

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In other news, I’m still on the fence about booties and dresses or skirts. But, the more I see other people wearing them the more comfortable I am, In fact, I got a lovely compliment on my booties from another Chicagogrammer so clearly the combo doesn’t look as weird on me as I thought it might.  So, yay for that!

Your thoughts on booties and dresses? I’d be curious to see if they’ve changed since the last time I posted about it.

 

 

This Not-So-Danish Girl [SIA Post]

Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring · Office Appropriate Outfits - Summer · Style Imitating Art

For this week’s Style Imitating Art choice by Jen, I wasn’t feeling anything in my own closet. Thankfully, I know a gal who has a clothing shop with a 1000+ piece inventory! Turns out, she also had the perfect chair for me to use as my backdrop.

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Dress & Kimono borrowed from Belle on the Roe | similar shoes | pearls borrowed from Annabelle

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I may have also borrowed her dog, Budweiser, for this photo shoot as well. He and Chewie are best doggy buds and it’s basically impossible for them to not be in the same room as Annabelle and me.

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Of course, when you’re working with dogs, you’re going to have some outtakes. So, here’s a few for your viewing pleasure. Because, let’s be honest, even though this outfit is amazing and a perfect interpretation of her blue dress, pearls, and florals, you’re really just here for the puppy pictures.

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Anyway, this outfit is actually for sale in the Belle on the Roe shop. If you’re in Chicago, you can setup a time to visit using this link. She’s located at the corner of Ashland and Diversey. Or you can join her Facebook group and see all four of us act like fools on the regular and score some beautiful outfits, just like this one!

Also, don’t forget to visit Jen’s blog for the full round-up of all of this week’s outfits! And stay tuned for my turn to host on Monday, September 4th. I’ve got something fun up my sleeve that will also include a giveaway!

Same Dress, Different Art

Office Appropriate Outfits - Summer · Style Imitating Art

Real talk for a second here, everyone. I re-wear items in my closet. A lot. Sometimes I change the accessories. Sometimes I don’t. I feel like the older I get the less time and energy I want to spend on coming up with an outfit.

Which is why this week’s Style Imitating Art outfit features the same dress I wore for the last challenge!

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Dress & Kimono c/o Belle on the Roe

I wore this to attend/work the Chicagogrammers first birthday bash at Gino’s East which, I found out, has an amazing rooftop patio! Said patio also had the perfect backdrop on which to take a photo for this week’s challenge.

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Annabelle and I were there to show off her  Belle on the Roe wares so of course I had to wear my dress and one of her kimonos from her shop. We had fun playing photographer for each other, talking to people about Belle on the Roe, and eating pizza. Seriously, guys, if you come to Chicago and want deep dish, I will recommend either Gino’s East or Pequod’s. And Gino’s East has more locations and is easier to get in to.

Plus, their location on Superior Street in Chicago has this view!

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I mean, Annabelle and I aren’t always included, but we could be!

P.S. Don’t forget to head over to Salazar’s blog to see all the other outfits inspired by this painting.

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In the Blink of a Lens [SIA Post]

Office Appropriate Outfits - Summer · Style Imitating Art

I haven’t been doing a lot of shopping online a lot lately but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been adding new things to my closet. Nope. I actually recently added this super comfortable dress to my wardrobe rotation. It’s called a “Carly” style from LuLaRoe. As I’ve mentioned before, my friend Annabelle has her own LuLaRoe business in Chicago and I help her out with a lot of things.

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This also means I’m around the clothes A LOT. At first I wasn’t a fan of this style of dress because I felt it was too big on me. But, it’s SO comfortable. So, when she got this one in and it happened to be in one of my favorite colors and a fun pattern, well, I wore it around the shop for an evening and decided it had to be mine.

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similar necklace | dress c/o Belle on the Roe | same sandals

It also works perfectly for this week’s Style Imitating Art choice (by me!) what with the colors matching the flowers and the pattern mimicking the lines of the buildings in the background.

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I know she currently has this same dress in stock in a “creamsicle” color and if you’re in Chicago you can try it on at her official in-person business launch party on Saturday, August 5th from 5-10pm at 1555 W Diversey Ave.

We took these outfit photos while we were hosting a pop-up shop in the south suburbs this past Saturday. I actually got to see one of the places Annabelle works as part of her day job! She does behavioral services for an organization that provides services to adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities and we were hosting a fundraiser for the organization. Annabelle donates part of her proceeds to the organization where she works. I’m actually posing on the grounds of one of their group homes.

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When  I first wore this dress Jason commented that it wasn’t my usual style. That’s true. It’s not quite as fitted or tailored as much of my other clothing. But, hey, when it’s hot or you just want to be comfortable, sometimes it’s nice to break out of your usual rut. Especially when you can still be cute.

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California Dreaming

Casual Clothes · Office Appropriate Outfits - Summer

It’s been a month since my vacation to Sonoma and Healdsburg but I still have one more outfit that I wanted to share with you! I actually wore this outfit to the GrowARTS art show the day after I got back from California since it’s both classy and comfy (and was at the top of my suitcase).

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In California, though, I wore it to taste wine at Quivira. My parents belong to their wine club which meant we got treated like royalty! Wine being served to us on the patio? A pour of any wine they had? Charcuterie and olives from their very own farm? Yes, please and thank you. Plus, this view:

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We’d packed our own lunch and basically spent the entire day at the same winery. After we drank and ate our fill we wandered around the gardens on site.

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If you’re in wine country, I HIGHLY recommend Quivira. Even if you aren’t a member of the wine club they’ve got wonderful wine and beautiful but unpretentious grounds full of flowers, vegetables and fruit plants.

Dress – Moonfish | Jewelry – Stella & Dot | Sandals – Shopbop | Hat – Chicago street fest

P.S. If you spend $50 at Stella & Dot using this link before the 15th you can get 50% off any of these beauties! (by the way, I’m only $100 away from hitting my max party hostess rewards so if you’ve been drooling over any of the jewelry I’ve been featuring, now’s the time to order!)

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Greetings from Sonoma: The Outfit [SIA Post]

Office Appropriate Outfits - Summer · Style Imitating Art

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I’m sure you all know how difficult it is to come home from a vacation, but it’s even more difficult when you’ve come home from a place with amazing weather, amazing food, amazing views and amazing wine! And you spent the time with amazing company (shout-out to my mom).

We didn’t have any real plans for our trip other than get to Sonoma and have fun. Well, that’s not entirely true. The one thing I wanted to do was go find this mural at The Fremont Diner in Sonoma since I’d chosen it as this week’s Style Imitating Art inspiration.

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And, yes, I succeeded! I wore my latest Moonfish purchase along with my brown and silver tote, silver shoes, and silver necklace (also from Moonfish). I was tempted to wear my gold jewelry and brown shoes but I went with the silver to mimic the metal wall.

Oh, and you’ll notice the hat in all my Sonoma photos. I bought this hat years ago at a street festival in Chicago but I think this was the first time it got worn so many days in a row.

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We ate lunch at the Fremont Diner after spending the morning on the balcony of winery with the most beautiful view: Nicholson Ranch. I’d been there once before almost 8 years ago, so of course I had to take a picture in almost the exact same spot.

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And here I am with my friend Holly, in July 2009!

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(Clearly I have a thing for silver shoes!)

If you weren’t following my Instagram Story, you probably missed out on many of the pictures I took this trip. So, here’s a taste of what we ate at The Fremont Diner (pun totally intended!)

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Fried oyster hash for me, shrimp and grits for my mom. Followed by amazing pecan pie!

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Don’t forget! If this week’s artwork inspired you to come up with an outfit, send it my way (looplooks@gmail.com) by the end of the day on Tuesday, June 20th and I’ll include it in the round-up on Wednesday.

A Hot Day’s Dress

Office Appropriate Outfits - Summer

A few weeks ago I restarted my Le Tote account that I’d put on hold. I was hoping to get some dresses I could wear in Sonoma. It turned out that I didn’t end up taking any of them to Sonoma with me, but I did wear the one I got several times beforehand. We’ve had a few really hot days in Chicago and this dress was perfect for those.

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I had to run a bunch of errands before going on vacation so this outfit got worn to Ulta, Target, and the grocery store.

I’m not a huge fan of the lace-up trend that’s going on, but since this one doesn’t actually lace I rather enjoyed the fun accent that looks like it laces but it doesn’t actually tie or anything.

The shoes are a recent order from Shopbop. I have them in brown and I love them so much I decided to get them in silver, too. Especially since the straps on my silver gladiator sandals need to be re-glued.

This outfit would be perfect to wear to outdoor festivals or, if you’re like me, just around town while you do that thing called adulting.

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same dress in different color | exact same dress | same shoes | similar hat

A deck sneak peak

Office Appropriate Outfits - Summer

Remember when I said we were decorating our deck? Well, the chairs came and I bought a rug and it all matches the hand-me-down tables perfectly!

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same chairs | same rug

I still need to hang our cafe party lights and find an ottoman (any suggestions??) but it’s definitely coming together! And if you want to see it person I’m still having a brunch party on June 24th and I’d love to have you there.

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I actually wore this outfit when I explored two neighborhood spots with my friend (and former neighbor) Margaret. She’s super into the food scene in Chicago so she knows all the places. We had brunch at Cellar Door Provisions and then more coffee and pastries from the Bakery at Fat Rice. Both are within walking distance of our apartment!

Cellar Door Provision is the cutest space and has simple but tasty food. Fat Rice is more energetic with some very interesting flavor combinations. But, I discovered that both have coffee bars so I know where I can go when I run out of coffee at home.

And then when we got back, she even helped me get the deck chairs set up! I’m sure she can attest to the fact that they are quite comfy. Chewie seems to think so, too.

 

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This outfit is also really comfy and I think I’m going to wear it on the plane to Sonoma ON SUNDAY!

Yes, my mom and I are taking a girls’ trip to California and I am so excited. I have already planned to pack all my new dresses (two from Moonfish!) and will get my mom to take some pictures. So, stay tuned!

similar dress | same jacket | similar sandals | similar scarf