Thursday, January 27, 2011

Lavender Layers

I really, really liked this outfit yesterday. I've worn the lavender over-sweater a lot before, but it's not so good in the winter because of the shorter sleeves. So I decided to try wearing it over a long-sleeve shirt and got comfort, warmth, and fun with shades of purple (especially with the patterned purple scarf)! And you'll notice the same boots that I keep wearing...again, more comfortable pieces. (I also am pleased that it was composed almost entirely of thrifted pieces...) And really, I just felt incredibly cozy in this. Perfect for a day of working at the lab. I had a project I needed to get done yesterday morning, and then some work on a paper I hope to submit to a conference in a few days.

Purple shirt, thrifted. Lavender Ann Taylor sweater, thrifted. Freestyle Revolution jeans, thrifted. Black boots, thrifted. Scarf, thrifted. Necklace, Wet Seal. Earrings, handmade.

Also, something I forgot to mention...I've been doing pretty well so far with the workout routine, actually making it to the gym basically every morning before work and a long run (on the treadmill for now) on Sundays. I'm getting back into shape much faster than I'd expected; I actually ran 4 miles last Sunday, which is huge for me -- that's probably further than I've ever run! I've also been inspired by the wonderful Kyla of Blue Collar Catwalk and her Sweaty Wednesdays series to set a few fitness goals for the year. I've signed up for a 5L race in March (though we'll see whether my rehearsals for the opera, which is coming to Boston that month, pose a problem), and plan to run a 10K in October. Plenty of time to build that up, right?

So anybody have any great weekend plans? Enjoying (or not) the giant mountains of snow that seem to be blanketing the East Coast right now? I was definitely in snow-boots-wading-through-piles-of-snow mode this morning...

Friday, January 21, 2011

Patterned Shoe DIY

So I promised you all a shoe DIY this weekend! I started with this pair of navy Mossimo pumps...had gotten them free, but never had worn them because they were just a bit plain (though perfectly nice!)

I've also been seeing lots of amazing pictures of Jeffrey Campbell patterned shoes, like these Tick shoes in Tribal (image from

Gorgeous shoes, but far too expensive for me! So with the pattern elements of the Ticks as inspiration, and armed with a silver Sharpie, I started drawing freehand patterns on the pumps. The silver stood out well against the dark blue, though I had to be careful not to smudge it while still wet. I didn't try to make the patterns on the two shoes match, as I decided I preferred the "deliberately different" look more than the otherwise inevitable "close, but not quite a match" look. Here's the final result:

The backs:

From above:

What do you think? I'm pretty pleased with how these turned out and how simple it was! (Granted, we'll have to see how the Sharpie holds up once I've worn them a few times.) I should come up with a fun outfit to show these off. Now for the snow to melt so I can actually wear nice shoes outside...

Peacock Feathers and Suede

This was Wednesday's outfit, for a fairly quiet day at the lab. My week's been alternating between days full of meetings and project workshops and quieter days to just work. Somehow I've gotten myself a full load of projects for the next month or so, which is a good thing.

This outfit was yet another attempt at dressing warmly enough for the cold, snowy weather we've been having. I'd gotten this suede skirt a while ago, but just found it again in my closet that morning. It's a nice weight and cuts the wind fairly well.

Details: Red sweater, Forever21. Suede skirt, thrifted. Tights, Loft. Shoes, Aldo (gift from my mother). Necklace, self-made.

I really like these Aldo oxfords. I wasn't sure what I thought about the high-heeled oxfords trend for a while, but as I've been seeing more and more adorable pairs of them over the last year or so it's really grown on me. So when my mother and I were out shopping after Thanksgiving and we found these shoes on a big sale, I was thrilled to have them be a holiday present. I've already worn them several times.

Closeup of the necklace. I'm trying to get in the habit of crafting things more regularly, and this was one of the pieces I put together last week. (One of my new year's goals is to craft something at least once a week.) I'm attempting to really jump-start this by signing up for the Thing-A-Day Challenge, where participants agree to make something every day for the month of February. I can do that, I think (even though some of the days may be fairly small projects). And that's just what I need to get my creative juices flowing!

What else? Somehow, it feels like this was a long week, even though I took Monday mostly off from work. The MFA was having a free day, so I went for a while and checked out a couple of sections, including an exhibit on the couture designs of Arnold Scaasi...some lovely, though fairly over-the-top dresses. (Including the one covered with white feathers, worn by one of his clients to the opening of a museum exhibit on birds!) The polka-dot dress here was one of my favorites, though the picture came out fairly blurry due to the low light. (Sometimes I really wish I had a DSLR...)

Then came the busy workweek. We got even more snow here today, and the weekend's supposed to be super cold as well. I'll mostly be working on writing a conference paper, though I'm planning to put up the shoe DIY over the weekend. Anyone have fun weekend plans?

Friday, January 14, 2011

Bold print and a black dress

This outfit (which I wore on Tuesday) started with the blouse... a lovely silk thing with one of the loudest patterns I own. I'd picked it up at the dollar-a-pound because I really liked the colors and figured it was worth $0.50 or so to see if I could make it work. So on Tuesday, when I had the first day of a class and a couple of presentations where I wanted to seem "artistic/creative," I thought I'd play with the blouse. The first step involved toning the print down a I added the black wrap dress. I've been wearing these boots a ton recently, as they seem to go with most things I wear (and are remarkably decent in the snow, too).

Here's a closeup of that pattern detail. Now imagine that all over the shirt. Not my style to wear a whole blouse worth of that, but glad I could fit it into an outfit!

Details: silk blouse, thrifted. Black wrap dress, thrifted. Tights, Ann Taylor. Black leather boots, thrifted.

We got a LOT of snow on Wednesday, so I worked at home...I'd missed the first round of Boston blizzards this winter, but not this one! Probably got at least 12 inches?

I'm not a big fan of the snow/winter in general, but I have to admit this storm was really beautiful.

Also, I've got a shoe DIY post coming up soon...but here's a bit of a preview! I started with these navy Mossimo heels that I'd gotten for free but never worn. And I've been really inspired by patterned shoes, including things like Jeffrey Campbell's Tick Tribal shoes...

I'll be posting the finished results soon!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

New Year, New Beginnings

Hi everyone! Realize I haven't been around these parts for a while...hope everyone's been doing well and had a great holiday season! Little bit of catchup: I spent September in Europe working on my research group's opera, which was amazing and turned out fairly successfully. October and November involved a fair amount of time with a production of Guys and Dolls, which I made the perhaps-overwhelming decision to both be a cast member of and costume design. December involved some small projects, visiting friends, and spending the holidays with the boyfriend and his family. And now, suddenly a new year!

This was yesterday's outfit, trying to start some of my fashion resolutions (well, I'm calling them "goals" rather than "resolutions" this year) about being more comfortable pushing my personal boundaries with what I wear. I also hope to do a fair amount of closet-editing this year...I've collected a bunch of thrifted clothing, some of which I don't necessarily love or look all that great in. I would love to have a closet filled with comfortable and fun pieces I really enjoy wearing and feel stylish in. Trying out whether this purple dress is one of those...comfortable, fun, but I'm not sure what I think about the shoulder pads. These boots, unfortunately, have to go in the giveaway pile... I didn't realize how tight they were across the tops of my feet!

Details: Dress, thrifted. Earrings, handmade. Boots, thrifted. Belt, thrifted. Tights, Ann Taylor.

Other goals for the new year include getting back in a regular workout routine, trying new recipes, doing something crafty at least once a week, reading a book at least every month, and getting a couple of papers published.

I love the buttons on the sleeves of this dress!

Happy New Year to you all! :)
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