Thursday, February 28, 2013

Fashion Adventure: Perk Up

This morning I woke up feeling not so hot (think I'm getting a cold) and therefore, tired and cranky.  While this outfit didn't make me feel physically better, it did perk up my attitude a bit.  A little color and self confidence from a good outfit can really change my mood.

The Pieces:
1. Petite bright orange button down from Banana Republic Factory
2. Teal faceted teardrop necklace from Body Central Outlet
3. Petite size brown textured trousers from Kohl's
4. Honey bow flats from Bass Outlet

1. I love the combination of orange and teal with the necklace and shirt.  They were really cheery on a blah Thursday and brighter colors look great on my fair skin.
2. I think the pieces fit me really well.  The shirt is form fitting but not too tight.

I really don't have much that I dislike about this outfit!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Fashion Adventure: Falls Short of Wow

Today was another one of "those" days at work.  One of those days where it seems like... how on earth is it only Wednesday because I swear to Pete this has been the longest week ever!  Ack!  And I wasn't even at work yesterday!

The Pieces:
1. Petite gray, black & pink splatter tie top blouse from Banana Republic Outlet
2. Gray longsleeve crew neck cardigan from Target
3. Black Worthington petite trousers from J.C. Penney
3. Pewter bow flats from Bass Outlet

1. I really like the tie top blouse.  The pattern is fun and the colors work well together.
2. This cardigan was looking a little big with the blouse so I copied something that I saw on Go Chic Or Go Home and used a cute little dragonfly pin to make the cardigan more fitted.  You can see in the photo below that I just gathered the fabric in the back and pinned the two outer pieces together.

1. I feel like this outfit is just okay.  There's nothing specific that I don't like about it but it just seems like it falls short of WOW but I can't really put my finger on what's wrong with it.  Any suggestions?
2. I think I would like this blouse better if it was paired with a blazer or worn by itself.  I'm not really crazy about how it looks with this cardigan.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Fashion Adventure: Rainy Day Style

Today's outfit inspiration came from a combination of this post by Audrey and the need for a rainy day style that would keep me dry through lots of errands.  I had to take the day off today because I had a doctor's appointment with my endocrinologist and I planned to use the day to take care of a few other errands and some shopping.  (Don't worry, I'm not playing hookie.  My principal actually had me change my appointment to this day and asked me to take the whole day off so it would be easier to get a substitute!)  However, the weather was calling for a high of 75 and strong thunderstorms.  So I wanted something that would weather the wind and rain and still look chic.  Mission accomplished!  My feet stayed dry through the long hike from my parking spot to the hospital and to run errands for a bit of clothes shopping at Goodwill (scored 2 items!) and a grocery trip to Target that turned into a bit more clothes shopping.  Darn you, Target!

The Pieces:
3. Straight leg jeans from Walmart
4. Brown riding boots from Bass Outlet

The Likes:
1. My feet were nice and dry even through puddles with these boots on!  And with my hair in a messy bun, I didn't care if it frizzed up from the humidity.  A little waterproof mascara and the showers couldn't rain on my parade!
2. I always feel a little hippy in these jeans but I think they look pretty good in these pictures!  I was a little worried that since I was taking pictures in my bedroom today that they wouldn't turn out at all but I think the photos came out well!
3. The gold necklace is perfect with this top.  I can't take credit at all because I basically ripped off Audrey completely but I love how the top and the leaf necklace look together!
4. The maroon top really makes my eyes stand out nicely.  I guess the red shade is a nice contrast to my green eyes.
5. When the wind blew this flowy top, it felt really sexy while still being covered.  Additionally, I think this is a super versatile top.  I wore it last weekend with capris and sandals when it was 82 degrees.  You could also wear it under a blazer if you unrolled the sleeves.  I think it's a great combination of casual/dressy and sexy/conservative.  There's so many ways to wear it!

1. The boots aren't exactly sexy or cute but they do serve the function of dry feet.  Maybe when these ones wear out, I'll look for something a little prettier.  For now, I'm keeping them just for function's sake.
Sidenote: For my doctor's appointment today, I had to walk all the way from my parking spot (at the very farthest corner of the parking lot) to the front of Flagler Hospital in the rain.  With my boots and umbrella, I was still totally dry when I arrived!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Fashion Adventure: Contrast

It took me way longer than you might think it would to realize that this purple shirt and yellow necklace would look amazing together!  I've mentioned it a few times lately, but the website Go Chic or Go Home has seriously helped me recently to create outfits using the pieces I have and this outfit is completely courtesy of GCOGH.  Maybe later this week I'll do a detailed post about GCOGH and what exactly you can do with it.  What I'll tell you for now is that one of my favorite features is that you can upload pictures of your own clothes and drag and drop to make outfits.  Then I just save the outfits and instead of standing and staring at my closet, I just look through the outfits I've already created and pick one out.  It has really made picking out my clothes easier and faster.

The Pieces:
1. Eggplant petite pinstripe button down from Ann Taylor Factory
2. Yellow statement necklace from Charlotte Russe
3. Petite curvy fit tan trousers from Kohl's
4. Black bow ballet flats from Bass Outlet

1. Both the shirt and pants are petite size so they fit nicely and I don't look like I'm swimming in my clothes!  Before this whole fashion adventure, I truly did not realize just how poorly most of my clothes fit me and I now really believe that it's 90% because I need to be buying most of my clothes from the petite section.  I guess it took a long time for this four foot eleven inch tall woman to realize something so simple and common sense.
2. I love the contrast of this deep purple top and yellow necklace!  I always get compliments from students when I wear this necklace but today even teachers were loving it.
3. If you look at the detail photo of this shirt in the collage above, you can see the subtle vertical pinstripe.  It's not terribly noticeable from faraway, but I knew it was there and somehow it made me feel a bit longer and leaner.  Possibly a placebo but in my mind it worked!
Binder clip to the rescue!

1. As I mentioned the last time I wore these pants, they fit in the hips and thighs but are too big in the waist and have no belt loops.  Since I haven't worn them for almost two weeks, I forgot all about that until I put them on and remembered that I seriously need to get them altered!  It was too late to change clothes, so I came up with a temporary solution that I saw in the book Style by Lauren Conrad, which I am currently still reading.  She said that when photo shoots are done, the models have tons of safety pins and binder clips in the back of their clothes to give the illusion of a perfect fit.  While this is not a permanent fix, the binder clip worked for me for today to hold my pants up and my shirt covered it.  And FYI, I looked up the number of two tailors near my home and I plan to check them out soon and get these pants fixed!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Fashion Adventure: On The Hunt

Brian and I went shopping this weekend for a specific occasion.  He won Teacher of the Year at his school this year and in March he is being honored at their countywide ceremony, which is red carpet attire, according to the invitation.  A month ago, I owned nothing even remotely appropriate for this sort of occasion.  After last week's trip to Orlando, I at least had a little black dress that was perfect but I needed shoes and some jewelry to go with it, so on the hunt I went!  After a good deal of searching, I found exactly what I was looking for... along with a few other things.  Oops.  :-P

Petite Solid Crepe Shirt in Rouge Red from Kohl's

Petite Maroon Chiffon Henley Set from Kohl's
I am so excited about this shirt!  I think it would look great for work with a little T-shirt underneath and a blazer over top or it could be really sexy for a date with the tank underneath that it comes with and a pair of heels.  And the chiffon makes it comfortable all year round in Florida.  Versatility!

Petite Bracken Fern 3/4 Sleeve Button Down Shirt from Banana Republic Factory

Petite Orange Long Sleeve Button Down Shirt from Banana Republic Factory

These two shirts from Banana Republic were a steal at $12.99 each!!  They are perfect for work with a camisole underneath and could even transition to the weekend since the buttons don't go up as high as some button downs do.  I'm really pleased that all of the shirts that I bought could be worn for work or the weekend, depending on how they are paired.

Black Ruffle Pumps from Famous Footwear Outlet

I really wanted a pair of black pumps that I could wear with my little black dress for the Teacher of the Year Ceremony.  I only have a few pairs of heels and none of them really would go with that dress.  I didn't really feel like ballet flats were fancy enough but I wanted a pair of heels that was at least mildly comfortable and these were the most comfortable ones I found.  And I actually really like them!  The heel isn't too high and I can walk in them without feeling like I'm tromping around.  The ruffles make them a little more sexy and fun than plain pumps.  My husband thought they were totally fabulous too!

Last, I wanted a necklace that I could wear with the black dress that would add something to the outfit without being overwhelming.  I ended up finding something that I think will be perfect and of course, I found a few extras while I was at it.

Rose Garden Gold Leaf Necklace from Charlotte Russe 

This is a close up of this pretty pendant necklace that I bought.  I think it goes amazingly with the maroon chiffon henley above.

Beige Faceted Necklace from Body Central Outlet

I've had my eye on this necklace for weeks but every time I went into Body Central Outlet (which sells all their jewelry for $3.90 or less), I swooned over it.  I always saw it on the mannequin but not the jewelry section of the store.  Finally today I got brave and just asked an employee if I could buy the one on the mannequin.  Score!

Teal Faceted Teardrop Necklace from Body Central Outlet

This necklace caught my eye just as I was checking out.  To be honest, it was a bit of an impulse buy but for under $4, I don't really feel bad about it.  I've already thought of at least three different tops that I can wear with it.

Faux Pearl Strand from Body Central Outlet

This is exactly the sort of necklace I was looking for to go with my black dress.  Something classy and chic.  It might not be the necklace I end up wearing to the ceremony, but it's nice to have something very classic in my wardrobe.  Now I can't wait for March!

Friday, February 22, 2013

Fashion Adventure: Too Big

This shirt is just too big!  After yesterday's made-for-me shirt, this one is just sad.  This was a $12 shirt that I bought at Walmart last year and that's just about what it looks like.

The Pieces:
1. Green short sleeve button down shirt from Walmart
2. Tan and navy one button blazer from Papaya
3. Gray faceted gem necklace from Ann Taylor Factory
4. Trouser jeans from Loft Outlet
5. Honey bow ballet flats from Bass Outlet

1. With the blazer on, this outfit looks pretty put together and professional.
2. The trouser jeans fit well and are very comfortable.

1. As I said before, this shirt is just way too baggy on me.  I'm learning that one of the real problems that I have is that when I buy clothes that are not petite size, they just don't quite fit me correctly.  The darts on this shirt are not really in exactly the right place and it's too wide.  Since it was an inexpensive buy, I may end up using it as an experiment shirt to see if I can take in the sides and make it a little more form fitting and flattering.

I pulled the excess fabric to the back of this shirt so you could really see just how big and baggy this shirt is.  I'm really not a fan of any shirt that makes me look bigger than I am.  I don't need clothes to do that... I have cheeseburgers and ice cream for that!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Fashion Adventure: Turquoise

I know this was a short work week for me but it's been so stressful and long and I can't wait for it to be over!  I'm going to make a trip to Kohl's tomorrow and maybe find the black ankle pants or capris I've been looking for and maybe a brightly colored top.  Hopefully that will make the week end on a happy, stress-free note!

The Pieces:
1. Black long sleeve button down from Banana Republic Outlet
2. Faux turquoise necklace from Walmart
3. Gray curvy fit trouser pants from Kohl's
4. Black bow ballet flats from Bass Outlet

1. This shirt fits me amazingly!  After yesterday's overly baggy top and trousers, this outfit felt just right.  A great fitting top and looser trousers flatters my figure.  I never knew a dress shirt could be so sexy!  This top from Banana Republic is sized by numbers (2, 4, 6, 8 etc) instead of letters (S, M, L) so you can get a really great fit that is perfect for you and it shows!  And for under $20, I might have to go back and snag another!
2. I love the pop of turquoise in this other wise plain outfit.  It really stands out and makes a simple outfit more interesting.  I actually almost got rid of this necklace because it was just so absurdly long!  The chain is adjustable and when it's in the middle, the necklace hangs down past the top of my pants.  Even if I adjusted it to be shorter, the excess chain would hang down in the front.  Then this morning I decided to just use some pliers and hack off part of the chain.  Now the necklace is wearable again!
3. I realized after getting dressed that I could have paired this top and the pants with my red necklace and red flats and had a totally different look to the outfit.  That means this is an outfit that could really be versatile by just changing the accessories.

I don't really have anything that I dislike about this outfit!  That's always good!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Fashion Adventure: Not A Winner

Well, every outfit can't be a winner and I feel like this one is not.  It's not terrible but I think it just falls a little short of what I was hoping for.

The Pieces:
1. Pleated Snakeskin Blouse from Kohl's
2. Camel V-neck cardigan sweater from Kohl's
3. Brown textured trousers from Kohl's
4. Honey bow ballet flats from Bass Outlet
5. Brown tone dangle earrings from Walmart

1. With the heavier weight of the textured trousers and the sweater, I was warm all day on this chilly Florida day.
2. I love all the warm and neutral tones of this outfit.  There is just something about brown tones that makes me happy, especially the honey colored shoes!

1. I feel like this outfit just lacked a little something.  I tried wearing a belt with it but the top is a little too baggy and then it just looked messy.
2. I think the proportions are off on this outfit.  Maybe the blouse would look better with a more fitted bottom (maybe the black cropped pants I'm still on the hunt for) to keep the proportions more balanced.  I think the loose fitting trousers and a loose fitting blouse made me look a little like I'm drowning in clothes that are too big for me.  Never a good look when you're petite.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Fashion Adventure: Pinterest Inspired

This outfit was actually inspired by something I pinned awhile back. I was drawn to the combination of a chambray shirt, black pants, glasses, and layered jewelry on the two different women. My look isn't exactly the same but I really like the way it turned out. Professional with some pizzazz to keep things fun!

The Pieces:
1. Button down chambray shirt from Kohl's
2. Black pencil skirt from Target
3. Strand of doubled up faux pearls and chain (don't remember where this is from)
4. Deep burgundy tights from Loft Outlet (I thought these were maroon but when I opened the package this morning, I saw that it said deep burgundy.)
5. Leopard print flats from Target

6. Faux patent leather belt

1. The addition of the faux leather belt was totally by accident and yet I think it really adds something special to this outfit.  This morning after getting dressed, the shirt kept coming untucked from the skirt and I wanted a way to tighten the skirt a bit and contain the shirt.  So I added the faux patent leather belt to the mix and it was instant magic! (see photo above)
2. I love the combination of classic and sassy in this outfit.  The chambray top, faux pearls, and pencil skirt are all classic pieces but the fun burgundy tights, leopard flats, and faux patent belt add something a little more edgy to the outfit.
3. The fit of this outfit is very flattering.  Again, buying this shirt in the petites section made a lot of difference in the way it fit me.  The skirt was originally a little too long but I hemmed it (and the liner) so now it's a great length for me.
4. I felt really professional, yet chic in this outfit.  I used to wish I could just wear scrubs or something to work and keep it simple but now I'm so glad that I have the opportunity to wear some really fun and different outfits each day.  Loving the clothes I own makes me really excited to go to work because now I get to look cute every day!

1. While I love the burgundy tights and I love the leopard flats, I don't think I love them together.  It just seemed like a little much.  Next time I think I'll stick to just one or the other.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Fashion Adventure: Shop Til You Drop

As I mentioned in my last post, I spent the entire day Saturday shopping!  My friend and I left Saint Augustine at 8:30 AM and I didn't get back home until 10:30 PM.  We drove about two hours down to Orlando and shopped the outlet on International Drive and the one on Vineland Avenue for their awesome President's Day sales!  And that doesn't include the shopping that she and I did earlier this week at Kohl's or the shopping I did Friday night at Walmart.  Seriously, my feet and hips are killing me!  But I have a wardrobe that's pretty much complete now and which I love!  I'm pretty pleased and now I will just have to add in a shirt here and a skirt there.  I found almost all of the things on my list and all of them were either on sale or clearance.  Yea for President's weekend deals!

Before heading out to shop, I always like to make a list of what I'm looking for:
- a statement necklace in a neutral tone
- Skirts and dresses that can be easily mixed with other pieces I already have
- blouses and tops that can be worn both for work or weekends and can be worn either by themselves or layered under blazers, cardigans, or over other items (This was a big hole I needed to fill in my wardrobe.)
- black cropped pants, capris, or skinny trousers to wear with flowy tops
- belt in a medium brown tone
- opaque tights in black, gray, and maroon
- honey, beige, or brown flats (I actually had seen a pair several times that I wanted but I was afraid they would be sold out of my size.)

Let's start with what I got from Kohl's.  I had twenty dollars in Kohl's cash left over from two previous shopping trips there so I wanted to use my free money and get a few more tops.  In addition to my Kohl's cash, everything I bought was either on sale or clearance.  I barely had to use any of my own money.  That's one thing I love about Kohl's, as well as their decent selection of petite clothes.  Everything I bought there was petite size.

Croft & Barrow Chambray Shirt
Splatter Chiffon Henley Set
Plaid Button Tab Shirt

Next, I had to stop at the grocery store to get milk and I happened to notice that my grocery store actually had opaque tights so I picked up a pair of Seasonless Black Opaque Tights.  Seasonless because they are opaque but not so thick that you could only wear them in winter.  I also picked up a new pair of sheer nylons since I got a run in mine last week.
Seasonless Black Tights
(pictured is not the exact same brand)
Sheer nude colored nylons (pictured is a different brand)

Then Friday night I did my serious grocery shopping at Walmart.  In addition to tons of food, I found some other great deals on accessories.  They had lots of opaque tights on clearance.  My friend said her Walmart also had the same tights on clearance so if you need some, you might want to check out your local store.  I ended up finding my size in gray and brown so even though brown wasn't on my original list, I thought they would be fun to try out too and for the low cost, I wasn't afraid of the risk if I didn't like them.  They didn't have maroon tights but I did find a great medium thickness brown belt that was also on clearance.
Brown opaque tights (pictured: different brand)
Charcoal heather gray tights (pictured: different brand)
Medium brown triple loop waist belt

Next, I scored big time at the outlets!  Let's start with the shoes that I have been lusting after for over a month.  I loved the unique honey shade of these shoes from the first time I saw them in the Bass Outlet.  I have the same ones in black but I really wanted this color too.  I didn't buy them at the time (I bought the black ones instead) and I've regretted it ever since and every time I went in that store, I kept wanting to buy the shoes.  Lucky me that when I finally broke down and decided to get them, they still had them in my size!  I guess this shade is not very popular but I love it!

Honey Bow Ballet Flats

Ann Taylor has a great petite section and they were having an amazing sale this weekend. An extra forty percent off of everything on clearance and fifty percent off of everything else in the store.  I found some great items at great prices and since they are petite, everything fit me amazingly well!
Brown long sleeve blazer
Eggplant long sleeve button down
Gray faceted gem statement necklace

Then I moved on to Banana Republic, which was also having some amazing sales!  Depending on what you were buying, the discounts were any where from 30% - 70% off.  After the disappointment of my black sheath dress, I was determined to find a beautiful dress that could be worn on its own and look amazing.  Success!  And again, everything fit like a glove because all the sizes I bought were petites!  I seriously didn't know that it could be so easy for me to find clothes that fit me properly just by looking in the right section.
Little black dress
Black long sleeve button down
Black, gray, & pink splatter tie top blouse

And last, while I didn't find any clothes at the Loft Outlet (probably because I shop at the one next to me all the time), I did find a pair of opaque maroon tights on clearance!
Opaque maroon tights
(pictured is a different brand)
I seriously found almost everything on my list (except black capris) and everything I bought was for an amazing price.  That blazer fits like it was made for me.  The original price was something like $150 and I got it for $31!  I definitely would say that my Orlando Outlet trip was a shopping success and I had a great time with my friend too!  My friend and I are supposed to be getting a big bonus (in addition to two bonuses that Brian will get) in March and we were discussing possibly going back for another day trip.  Hopefully they'll have some great sales then too!