Feb 1st, Outerwear

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Hi friends, and happy Friday! For today’s post I decided today to focus on outwear.

Since so many of us are running errands all day- dashing in and out of the car from one shop to the next we might actually never even take our coats off!

That being said, it’s easy to look dated and frumpy in a coat- and it’s also easy to look pulled together, so basically it’s your choice!

How much do you really care? For me- I care, only because I feel better when I feel pulled together. I feel more energized, more spunky (I know, stupid word- but I couldn’t think of anything else to say!) and I just feel polished.

When I’m out running errands dressed in frumpy clothes- I honestly feel like I don’t get as good of service as when I have put a little effort into my look. Call it superficial, but in my opinion, it’s true.

Let’s look at my photos. In my ‘before’ look I am wearing this enormous shapeless coat (which actually is my hubby’s) but I wanted to show you a before picture of a coat that is so large it literally is overwhelming me- making me look far larger than I am.  The baggy jeans and Uggs (while incredibly comfortable) are also adding to the frumpy look.

In my ‘after’ shot you’ll notice I replaced the baggy, frumpy jeans for my skinnies. I know, I know, you want to be comfortable. I hear ya! But let me tell you, these skinny jeans are truly the most comfortable pair of jeans I have EVER owned. The brand is Madewell- and I don’t know how they do it- but the cotton is so incredibly soft and stretchy, these jeans feel like yoga pants! I promise.

I’ve also replaced the ugly Uggs with my Frye boots. Again, I hear ya, you’re running errands and on your feet all day and you want to be comfortable. I feel your pain! It is so important for me to be comfortable too! By investing in these more expensive boots, I have made an investment into my foot comfort. These Frye boots are so comfy that I could wear them all day and my feet will not hurt. Plus, they look so much more stylish than the Uggs, don’t you think?

Lastly- my coat. This coat is such an improvement over the one on the right- simply because rather than swallow me up- it emphasizes my shape- while keeping me nice and toasty. The best part? I bought this coat at Target! It’s perfect for me because it covers my butt (which is essential both for keeping warm and for when wearing skinny jeans) and because of the cute belt. A belt on a coat is a must- it helps define your waist and makes you look more polished.

Finally, since this outfit is so devoid of personality (and color) I added this gorgeous bright scarf. It completes the look- and adds a nice focal point for the outfit.

Coat: Target, scarf: J Crew

Coat: Target, scarf: J Crew

Here are some good examples I pulled from Zappos. All of these coats are cute, but in my opinion, the belted ones are more flattering.

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This is the same model as above, but doesn't she look a lot thinner in this belted coat?

This is the same model as above, but doesn’t she look a lot thinner in this belted coat?

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Again, same model as above- the belted coat just makes her look thinner.

Again, same model as above- the belted coat just makes her look thinner.

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Nov 20th, Day 2 of Disneyworld

Well, we’ve made it through 2 whole days of touring Disneyworld, my goodness this place is HUGE!

I wanted to share with you some more tips about what to wear. As I mentioned yesterday, layering is the absolute key. It is very chilly in the morning- and as it warms up (or cools down) you want to have appropriate clothes.

Today’s outfit is actually what I wore yesterday- and it worked out great. It was cold all day and I never even needed to remove any layers- but had the sun come out- I could have removed the jacket- or the leggings, or the scarf…

I took a simple cotton black dress (black works because it will hide dirt- in the heat of summer I wouldn’t wear black- but for Nov it works). Underneath, I wore black stretch pants, then on top wore a cardigan (not pictured- I had to add it because it was so cold- these pictures were taken before I left), then on top of the cardigan I wore this utility jacket. To top the whole thing off, I added a scarf. I love this outfit because of the many layers- and because this jacket has large- deep pockets perfect for holding my map, my phone, anything!

As for my shoes- these are my Dansko sandals- and they worked perfectly! My feet were incredibly comfortable, my back never ached (as it usually does after a lot of walking) and let me tell you- we did A LOT of standing in lines and walking around!  Comfortable shoes are an absolute MUST for Disneyworld.

My cross body bag ended up being too heavy to use, so instead I opted for a plain black backpack. I carried snacks, a bottle of water, my guide book and camera. Not super stylish- but it certainly worked to carry the essentials!

Drink lots of water to stay hydrated!

If you are visiting Disneyworld in the winter, be sure to pack warm clothes! Even thought the forecast was 72 degrees, it was 58 today! Very chilly, I can’t tell you how many people we saw who had to make an ’emergency purchase’ in the gift store of a dorky Disneyworld sweatshirt. Plan for chilly weather- I’d rather be over dressed than freezing! Keep in mind, every item pictured above is rolled up and stashed inside my bag on the picture on the right.

Dress: Macy’s, Jacket: Marshalls, Shoes: Dansko, Scarf: Boutique in Yakima

Nov 15th, Three for Thursday, Utility Vest

Welcome to another edition of Three for Thursday, where I show 1 item worn 3 ways!

Today I am highlighting my utility vest.

I first saw this vest all over style blogs last summer. I immediately drove to my local Old Navy and snatched one up! It is a fun piece to have, and I continue to see women wearing it, so this trend is going to be around for a while.

My first look I have paired the vest with jeans, a striped shirt and a scarf. This look is super casual, easy and fun. Don’t be afraid to mix a striped shirt with a floral pattern scarf. Pattern mixing is another trend that is here to stay. Quick note about my scarf- please make sure you buy scarves that are large and have some bulk to them. A scrawny scarf will not look cute, instead it will look like you are trying to hard- and missing the mark.

This scarf is one of my favorites! I love the floral pattern!

My next look is a fun one- I decided to pair the rugged vest with a dainty lace shirt. To add a little more  interest I chose my red jeans and my Tory Burch flats. I think a necklace might be the perfect final touch!

Contrasting the feminine lace top and the rugged vest is a fun way to mix things up.

My last look is one you’ve probably seen me do before (and will see a different version of next week).  Here I have layered my vest over a dress. It’s a fun way to make a dress casual enough for day use (you could wear this anywhere!). To keep warm, I have on socks and boots. To add a little color and interest, I chose my Stella and Dot statement necklace.

I love this necklace, but not sure it’s totally right for this look… hmmm…

Top Picture: Jeans: Nordstrom, Shirt: J Crew, Vest: Old Navy, Scarf: Boutique in Yakima, WA

Middle Picture: Jeans: TJMaxx, Lace shirt: Madewell, Vest: Old Navy, Shoes: Nordstrom

Bottom Picture: Dress: Land’s End, Boots: DSW, Necklace: Stella and Dot

Oct 18th, Two Toned

I’ve always loved the look of outfits that are made up of pieces all in one color family. It’s a good trick to making me look taller (by keeping the colors similar you create one long vertical line).

Today’s outfit is a good example of that.

I’ve chosen off white cords and a cable knit turtleneck in the same beige/ tan tone.

The thing is though- you don’t want your outfit to be too plain- as seen on the right. You must have something of interest in your look- maybe  it’s a pattern (like the cable knit of the turtleneck on the left), or a cool necklace, or maybe a scarf. You need something that breaks up the solid look and gives the eye a focal point.

This scarf is a great example- the red draws your eye in and the background is the same color as my sweater. The scarf has enough bulk to stand on it’s own (I HATE skinny, wimpy scarves!).

This is a very warm and comfy outfit!

As a little extra- I decided to try a third look! Here I kept the plain t shirt (less bulky under the jacket) and then added my dark denim jacket.

For a totally different look, I added my denim jacket.

Pants: Nordstrom (Kut- Diana skinny), Sweater: J Crew, Scarf: J Crew (similar), Booties: J Crew, Jacket: Gap (mine is in a dark wash)

Oct 11th, Cozy Sweater

It finally feels like fall here in Seattle, so I decided it was time for my ultra cozy sweater. I bought this several years ago at Anthropologie, and absolutely love it because of all the detail in it- there is so much to look at!

I layered the cardigan over a plain black t shirt- then added a scarf to give the look an even more cozy feel to it. It’s such an improvement over the look on the right. Please note that I actually really love the sweater on the right- but paired with this high neck black shirt and Uggs- it’s too plain.

As for my bottoms- I need your opinion.

My first look is jeans rolled to look like boyfriend jeans (note- this is the exact same pair of jeans in both pictures). For my feet, I chose my short black cowboy boots. Looking at the photos, I honestly can’t decide if I like this look or not!

Next I decided to try the sweater paired with my purple jeans- see below!

What do you think? Purple jeans or blue jeans?

To make my jeans look like boyfriend jeans, I simply rolled the bottoms. So simple!

You may notice this sweater is starting to pill a bit… I have a trick for you! Using a razor, shave your sweater and the pills will disappear. It takes a little time, but so worth it to save a favorite piece! Just be very careful- if the sweater is thin, you could easily make a hole.

You might also notice that you can see my short sleeves from the t shirt bunching up under the sweater- I will swap out this shirt for a long sleeve shirt so that the sleeves don’t bunch.

Please take a minute to comment- blue jeans or purple jeans?!

Sweater: Anthropologie (similar), Scarf: Target (similar), Jeans: Target, Booties: DSW, Black Boots: Frye

June 3rd, Where’d You Get Those Cropped Jeans?

  Sometimes things seem so simple and self explanatory that I honestly feel ridiculous sharing them.

But then my sweet neighbor, Laurel, tells me- ‘you should write this on your blog, some people may not know…’ and so here I am doing exactly that.

And actually, truth be told- it took me a LONG time to figure out this simple little trick! I used to see girls running around in the cutest cropped jeans and wonder where the heck they bought them.

So for those of you who are still searching for the perfect cropped jean- I have news for you!

Create your own!

Easy, right?!

I just went to Old Navy and found a pair I liked- in the perfect wash- and then I simple roll them up to make cropped jeans. So simple!

As Laurel pointed out- it’s kind of perfect because then you essentially have two pairs of jeans- wear them full length- or wear them rolled- and you have two totally different looks.

As for my scarf- I know most of  you around the country are probably dying at my scarf in the summer- but here in Seattle it’s only 55 degrees, so I need it to keep warm. I like the floral pattern with the stripes too… fun pattern mixing.

Enjoy your Sunday!

One quick thing I want to add- my brother in law just ran across the entire state of Kansas to raise money for Parkinson’s Disease. He did this in only 5 days! What an incredible accomplishment. I am so proud of him I just had to share.

To read all about it- click here- And if you are compelled to donate to his cause, I know he would appreciate it!  🙂

I actually wore this yesterday!  To my local friends, if you see me today in something different- you’ll know why! Sorry this is a bit blurry- I must have moved.

In the early morning, I even threw a cardigan on- it was that chilly. Oh summer- where are you?!

Jeans: Old Navy, Striped Shirt: J Crew, Scarf: J Crew, Cardigan: White House, Black Market

March 20, Time to Go

 Well, it’s finally time for Kara and her kiddos to head back to the midwest. It’s been a great girls week- and I hope you all enjoyed seeing pictures of someone other than me!

Today Kara is wearing greenish grey cords (from J Crew), a white button down top, black cardigan and a gorgeous scarf. She’s finished her look with these cute short Frye boots. Her look is casual, comfy and totally appropriate for her plane ride home.

I’m stuck here in rainy Seattle, so I’m sporting one of my new scores from our shopping adventures.

I finally splurged and bought the Hunter boots I’ve been coveting for so long.

Both of my sisters were shocked that I didn’t already own these- and now that I own them- I kick myself for not buying them sooner.

Yes, they are pricey. But, considering how often it rains here- they should be a staple in everyone’s closet.

Here’s why:

Unlike my checkered rain boots from Fred Meyer- these are actually WARM and COMFY (not to mention stylish).

These boots offer arch support so they are actually extremely comfy when you’re going to be on your feet all day. My old boots had absolutely no support, and after standing for about an hour, my back would ache.

Plus, I’ve talked about price per wear before- and if you take the price of these boots- and divide it by how many times you will wear them- they actually seem pretty reasonable. (I say this because although my sisters loved these- they chose not to buy them because it doesn’t rain every day in Kansas City- hence the price per wear goes up!).

I’ve paired my boots with skinny jeans with a pair of socks peeking out of the top of the boot. This is a super trendy look- and I thought I’d give it a try. I think it’s cute!

On top I have on another one of my new purchases- this black cape-like thing. It’s made of sweatshirt material, so it’s uber soft and warm. I love the asymmetrical hemline. I’ve put a grey and black striped shirt underneath to add a little pattern- and then piled on my chain necklaces to amp up the look even more.

This is a perfect rainy day outfit- and from the looks of things, I’m going to need it. I know I keep saying this- but seriously- anytime spring. We’re ready and waiting!

One more thing, I apologize for not doing more ‘before and after photos’ this week. It was so fun having my sisters here- but we were so busy we ran out of time! Sorry!  I’ll show one quick before pic below- you’ve seen this before, but just for fun I’ll show it again.

Here is what I looked like before I started caring about style. The bright blue coat, the pink boots. Not a sophisticated and stylish look.

This is not stylish at all.

Love these new boots!

The cardigan and scarf will keep her warm on the plane.

Don’t forget to vote for Top Mommy Blogs. I really appreciate it! 🙂

Jan 27th, Baby It’s Cold Outside!

This crazy Pacific Northwest weather!  After what felt like spring yesterday there is frost on the ground today. It’s cold out there!

Today I’m wearing jeans again- and this time I’m showing looser fitting jeans- since not everyone wants to wear skinnys!

These are my Paige Premium denim and they fit so well. They are a dark blue wash, the waistband is high (no whale tail peeking out the back) and I like the boot cut.

On the right I’m showing just jeans and the turtleneck. Nothing wrong with this look- add a necklace and it could be really cute. However, because it is so darn cold- I decided to add a vest and a scarf.

I like the multiple layers and the contrasting patterns (quilted vest, cable knit sweater and the floral scarf). On my feet I’m wearing my wedge black shoes again! I knew I’d love these babies!

My linkup today is with Girlymama for Fashion Friday! Have fun!

This scarf is huge (it honestly looks like a blanket) which is why it's so voluminous. Don't wear a wimpy scarf! These jeans look black (bad lighting in my bathroom), but they are blue.

Jeans: Nordstrom, Turtleneck: J Crew, Scarf: Lucky, Vest: Nordstrom, Shoes: DSW

Jan 17th, Snow Day

Another cold and snowy day in the Pacific Northwest. I’m hoping  that I won’t have to leave my house- so it’s tempting to wear sweat pants and slop around all day.

The problem is that when I dress like that- I feel like that. I lay around feeling lazy all day.

When I force myself to shower, get dressed, even put a little makeup on- it makes me feel like I need to accomplish something.

To be cozy and warm, I’ve opted for black pants, a black shirt and a gray cardigan- but as the picture on the right shows- it actually matters WHAT black pants, shirt and cardigan I chose.

For example, in the photo on the right, these black cargo pants aren’t very flattering. The straight cut of the pants makes my legs look wide – especially contrasted to the picture on the left, where the pant leg is much more fitted and slimming.

The limp gray cardigan on the right doesn’t add anything to this outfit- it just looks plain and old fashioned.

Compare that to the cardigan on the left. This cardigan has a fun boxy shape to it which works well because it is balanced with the skinny pants on bottom. It also has this neat cable pattern- which gives the outfit texture and interest.

Lastly, I’ve replaced the black shoes on the right with the more stylish black wedge booties.

I knew these booties would become my 'go to' shoe. They area great alternative to my Frye boots.

Pants: Marshalls, Sweater: Target, Scarf: Target, Boots: DSW

Nov 15th, Floral Scarf

Do this ever happen to you? You see something really inexpensive at Target, debate whether or not you should buy it- then finally decide to go for it? I’m talking about a $15 scarf that I seriously considered not buying! What is wrong with me? It was $15 bucks!

I think this has been one of my best purchases this entire fall!  The colors are absolutely beautiful- and perfect for my wardrobe. It is so versatile! I like it paired with my purple sweater- as seen here. Or with a purple top as seen here.

Today I’m wearing it with my grey grandpa sweater from J Crew (which I also almost passed up- good thing I didn’t!).

On my lower half I’ve got my skinny black pants, black boots (again) and a black tank. All black- because this outfit is only about the scarf. Which I love. I’ll never pass up a $15 scarf again. I promise!

I love the way this scarf completes the entire outfit.

Sorry about the lighting- I took these pictures early this morning- the sun wasn’t totally up yet!

Sweater: J Crew, Leggings: Marshalls, Scarf: Target, Boots: Nordstrom, Tank: Nordstrom