Current Obsession: Herringbone Ruffle Cape

Hello friend! As I mentioned in my winter kimono post, I am loving unique outerwear pieces right now. One such obsession is the cape. It all started during New York Fashion Week. At the Banana Republic event, I saw the Herringbone ruffle cape, and I haven’t been the same since. Just kidding, I am not that crazy! But in all honesty, the item stayed on my mind until I purchased it recently. Let me show you why it’s fantastic!

How to style a cape: 3 keys points for exquisite fall style. Banana Republic Herringbone ruffle cape review. Fall layers | outerwear | winter coat.

Other Cape Options

While the Herringbone ruffle cape is my love right now, there are plenty of other options for you, both in solids and prints. I am especially intrigued by this sweater cape.

 

Herringbone Ruffle Cape Review

Unlike what occurred in my winter kimono post, the Herringbone Ruffle Cape is named correctly. It is, in fact, a cape! Therefore, as expected,  it flows over the shoulders and only has slits for the arms. It does not have sleeves. Keep that in mind for styling purposes.

How to style a cape: 3 keys points for exquisite fall style. Banana Republic Herringbone ruffle cape review. Fall layers | outerwear | winter coat.

As far as quality goes, the cape is exquisite. It truly is a statement piece that looks like it is worth much more than what you pay for it. It is a wool and polyester blend that feels nice to the touch. The ruffles on the sleeve give it a cool edge. It makes me think of armor!

How to style a cape: 3 keys points for exquisite fall style. Banana Republic Herringbone ruffle cape review. Fall layers | outerwear | winter coat.
The ruffles stand up to give a fun detail to the cape

How to Style a Cape

Wearing a cape can be tricky! Because this outerwear garment does not have sleeves, your outfit sleeves (or your bare arms) will show through. Therefore, what you put on those arms matters! If you are wearing a long-sleeved top or dress, opt for one with fitted sleeves. A bold bell sleeve will compete with the cape. You’ll end up with a busy outfit that has no focal point.

How to style a cape: 3 keys points for exquisite fall style. Banana Republic Herringbone ruffle cape review. Fall layers | outerwear | winter coat.

Accessories are also important. If you are wearing a short-sleeve top, make sure to wear a pretty watch or striking bracelet. It’ll help to showcase the cape. Also, be mindful of the purse that you choose to carry. Shoulder bags look very awkward with a cape. Instead, go for a clutch or a satchel that you hold in your hand.

How to style a cape: 3 keys points for exquisite fall style. Banana Republic Herringbone ruffle cape review. Fall layers | outerwear | winter coat.

As you can see, I am thoroughly smitten with my new cape. This is definitely going to be one of my “it” pieces this fall and winter. I can’t wait to see how it looks with a skirt or dress!

Current Obsession: Cardigan Sweater Outfits

Hello friend! With the arrival of cooler temps, I am turning to layers to keep me warm and stylish. A look I’ve been wearing a lot lately involves cozy cardigan sweaters. I am loving layering them over both casual and work outfits. Let me show you my cardigan sweater outfits.

How to wear cardigan sweater outfits: casual cardigan sweater outfit, pattern mixing with J crew striped turtleneck, Target mossimo, camo print cardigan, chunky cardigan, studded boots, J crew ivory pencil skirt, Vionic Rory booties, leopard print cardigan

The obsession started last year when I purchased a burgundy cardigan sweater from Target. I wore that all fall and winter. You can see it in my mustard and burgundy post. Because I loved the sweater so much, when I saw similar ones this year at Target, I had to get a couple more. This time I decided to venture out of the solids and purchase patterned cardigan sweaters.

My Picks for Cardigan Sweater Outfits

This year the cardigan sweaters abound, so you should have no trouble finding one. However, because I’ve been so into them, I keep finding amazing ones. Therefore I will list my favorites below in case you want to snag one too! The ones I recently picked up are a camo print cardigan and a leopard print cardigan. I am also highly considering picking up this red gingham one. It’ll be lovely for the holiday season!

How to Style Cardigan Sweater Outfits

Wearing cardigan sweater outfits is easy. Many of the rules of duster cardigan outfits also apply here. I think cardigan sweaters are perfect to wear to work as well as on days off.

Cardigan Sweater Outfits for Work

The first two times I wore this cardigan to work, I wore it on the weekends with jeans and a tee. But I wanted to challenge myself and wear it on a weekday when I have to look more professional. It turns out it was quite easy to do. I simply changed out the jeans for a skirt and voila! I had a picture perfect work outfit!

Cardigan sweater outfits for work, J crew ivory pencil skirt, Vionic Rory booties, leopard print cardigan, chunky cardigan

The key to making this look work is keeping the other pieces professional. A pencil skirt is therefore essential. Not only is it the epitome of professional work wear, it’s also sleek and streamlined. It’s the perfect match for a bulkier sweater cardigan.

Cardigan sweater outfits for work, J crew ivory pencil skirt, Vionic Rory booties, leopard print cardigan, chunky cardigan Cardigan sweater outfits for work, J crew ivory pencil skirt, Vionic Rory booties, leopard print cardigan, chunky cardigan

For accessories I chose to play off of the colors in the sweater. Therefore I wore my brown Vionic Rory booties. I love how it has so many interesting details but without the bulk. A streamlined bootie like this helps to elongate the leg and to keep the outfit professional looking.

Cardigan sweater outfits for work, J crew ivory pencil skirt, Vionic Rory booties, leopard print cardigan, chunky cardigan Cardigan sweater outfits for work, J crew ivory pencil skirt, Vionic Rory booties, leopard print cardigan, chunky cardigan

One of the details I liked best about this particular cardigan is that there is pink in the leopard spots. Therefore I played off of that in my necklace.

Cardigan sweater outfits for work, J crew ivory pencil skirt, Vionic Rory booties, leopard print cardigan, chunky cardigan Cardigan sweater outfits for work, J crew ivory pencil skirt, Vionic Rory booties, leopard print cardigan, chunky cardigan

Cardigan Sweater Outfits for Casual Wear

For my casual take on cardigan sweater outfits, I chose to layer with leather leggings and a striped turtleneck. The stripes add a fun pattern mixing opportunity (you know I couldn’t resist!).

Casual cardigan sweater outfits, pattern mixing with J crew striped turtleneck, Target mossimo, camo print cardigan, chunky cardigan, studded boots Casual cardigan sweater outfits, pattern mixing with J crew striped turtleneck, Target mossimo, camo print cardigan, chunky cardigan, studded boots

A longer length cardigan such as this one is perfect to layer with a turtleneck. It elongates the body and produces such a regal silhouette.

Casual cardigan sweater outfits, pattern mixing with J crew striped turtleneck, Target mossimo, camo print cardigan, chunky cardigan, studded boots Casual cardigan sweater outfits, pattern mixing with J crew striped turtleneck, Target mossimo, camo print cardigan, chunky cardigan, studded boots

While this is the more casual look of the two, this outfit can easily be made work appropriate by changing out the leather leggings for a leather (or other fabric) pencil skirt.

Casual cardigan sweater outfits, pattern mixing with J crew striped turtleneck, Target mossimo, camo print cardigan, chunky cardigan, studded boots Casual cardigan sweater outfits, pattern mixing with J crew striped turtleneck, Target mossimo, camo print cardigan, chunky cardigan, studded boots

I hope you can see how easy it is to style cardigan sweater outfits. I am just loving them and will be wearing them throughout the colder months. Will you be wearing them too? Let me know how you are styling yours! Details from both outfits are linked below for your perusal!

 

Denim Shirtdress and Booties

Hello friend! While I am a big fan of skirts, I am a bit more weary of dresses. I find that they do not fit me as well as a two piece. Plus, individual pieces are so much easier to pattern mix. But recently I have been into wearing dresses. I credit the inspiration to my fashionable co-worker Mary Alice who is always wearing beautiful dresses. One such inspiration was pairing a denim shirtdress and booties.

Pairing a denim shirtdress and booties for a stylish outfit on polished whimsy. J Jill tencel denim shirtdress, anthropologie belt and booties. Style over forty, everyday style. Pairing a denim shirtdress and booties for a stylish outfit on polished whimsy. J Jill tencel denim shirtdress, anthropologie belt and booties. Style over forty, everyday style.

The denim shirtdress I got is from J Jill. It is a nice medium shade of denim with a good bit of stretch to it. Mary Alice often pairs her denim dress with a cool slouchy cardi. I plan on trying that a little later in the season when it actually starts to cool off in Los Angeles. So for now, I will just wear the dress on its own. You can read about my fall transition here and here).

Pairing a denim shirtdress and booties for a stylish outfit on polished whimsy. J Jill tencel denim shirtdress, anthropologie belt and booties. Style over forty, everyday style. Pairing a denim shirtdress and booties for a stylish outfit on polished whimsy. J Jill tencel denim shirtdress, anthropologie belt and booties. Style over forty, everyday style.

Because the dress is a solid color, I chose to add some visual interest by adding a large belt. I chose one with an intricate detail and contrasting color to break up the wide expanse of blue.

Pairing a denim shirtdress and booties for a stylish outfit on polished whimsy. J Jill tencel denim shirtdress, anthropologie belt and booties. Style over forty, everyday style. Pairing a denim shirtdress and booties for a stylish outfit on polished whimsy. J Jill tencel denim shirtdress, anthropologie belt and booties. Style over forty, everyday style.

My belt is from Anthropologie. If you ever need a really cool belt, start by looking there. I have found some fantastic and unique ones there over the years. I’m linking a few of my current favorites that would be perfect for a denim shirtdress and booties outfit here.

 

And then it came to the booties. Of course since it was still hot, I chose my Anthropologie “shooties.” Not only were they a perfect match to the belt, but also added a pattern to my outfit. The small hint of animal print was just what this print-lover wanted.

Pairing a denim shirtdress and booties for a stylish outfit on polished whimsy. J Jill tencel denim shirtdress, anthropologie belt and booties. Style over forty, everyday style. Pairing a denim shirtdress and booties for a stylish outfit on polished whimsy. J Jill tencel denim shirtdress, anthropologie belt and booties. Style over forty, everyday style.

For accessories I chose to wear a short necklace so it would not interfere with the belt. I went with my Brielle necklace from Baublebar. I am a sucker for filigree, so I ordered this necklace in the short Brielle Statement Necklace as well as the Brielle Pendant Necklace. What can I say, I know what I like!

Pairing a denim shirtdress and booties for a stylish outfit on polished whimsy. J Jill tencel denim shirtdress, anthropologie belt and booties. Style over forty, everyday style.Pairing a denim shirtdress and booties for a stylish outfit on polished whimsy. J Jill tencel denim shirtdress, anthropologie belt and booties. Style over forty, everyday style.

I love the way this denim shirtdress and booties outfit turned out. I also cannot wait to wear the dress with some other twists. How would you wear a denim shirtdress? I recently picked up an item that I think will pair great with it. Stay tuned!

 

Current Obsession: Eyelet Cutout Dress

Hello friend! Do you have that one person you always have good luck shopping with? Well that person for me is my cousin-in-law. We have similar tastes and fashion sense. Therefore it’s no surprise that we help each other find just the right pieces. Well luck struck again the last time we went shopping. With her help, I found 3 fabulous items: this jumpsuit, this top, and this amazing Madewell eyelet cutout dress.

Madewell eyelet cutout dress, perfect summer dress

As you already know, I love a white dress in the summer time. However, the Madewell eyelet cutout dress is on another level. I don’t know what a like more: the sexy cutouts or the flirty ruffled straps.

Madewell eyelet cutout dress, perfect summer dress Madewell eyelet cutout dress, perfect summer dress

And let’s not overlook the cute buttons on the side. I love button up sides!

Madewell eyelet cutout dress, perfect summer dress Madewell eyelet cutout dress, perfect summer dress

Because of the versatility of this dress, it will be the ideal item to round out the summer. In fact, I will likely be wearing this dress all the way up to Labor Day!

Madewell eyelet cutout dress, perfect summer dress

Even though it has cutouts which some might think is too youthful, the placement of them makes this eyelet cutout dress appropriate for all ages. Both boobs and butt are fully covered! Moreover, you can even wear a regular bra with this dress!

Madewell eyelet cutout dress, perfect summer dress

For this look, I chose to keep the outfit a bit more casual by wearing them with my favorite summer booties. However, you can easily dress it up with a dainty blush or nude summer sandal.

Madewell eyelet cutout dress, perfect summer dress

To accessorize this look, I actually battled with myself trying to decide. Part of me wanted to just wear some fun earrings. But another part of me thought that the open square neckline called for a bold necklace. Therefore I tried both options for you. All of the photos above are with the earrings. But I took a few photos with the necklace as well (see below). Which do you like more?

Madewell eyelet cutout dress, perfect summer dress Madewell eyelet cutout dress, perfect summer dress

Finally for my purse, I had to bring in a print with my favorite leopard print clutch. I chose the snow leopard instead of the classic leopard because it blended in more with the dress. While I often like to go for bold statements, for this look I wanted the eyelet cutout dress to be the focus. Therefore I chose a bag of similar coloring.

Madewell eyelet cutout dress, perfect summer dressMadewell eyelet cutout dress, perfect summer dress

Can you see now why I love this dress so much? Be sure to snag one soon as it’s on sale!

 

Current Obsession: Banana Republic Paperbag Waist Lace Inset Skirt

Hello friend! When I first laid my eyes upon this skirt, I knew I had to have it. One, because I had been looking for a neutral khaki skirt. Two, because I love the lace inset detail. Three, because the paperbag waist is a spring/summer trend that I have yet to try. And four, the most important reason, because it fit me so well! Therefore the Banana Republic Paperbag Waist Lace Inset Skirt had to come home with me!

Banana Republic paperbag waist lace inset skirt styled for a summer work outfit with a J Crew Navy bow sweater and Sam Edelman white pumps

Because I had been looking for a khaki skirt for such a long time, I had to wear the Banana Republic paperbag waist lace inset skirt right away. I wanted to make it a work look, so I paired it with an office-friendly navy shell.

Banana Republic paperbag waist lace inset skirt styled for a summer work outfit with a J Crew Navy bow sweater and Sam Edelman white pumpsBanana Republic paperbag waist lace inset skirt styled for a summer work outfit with a J Crew Navy bow sweater and Sam Edelman white pumps

I loved how the Banana Republic paperbag waist lace inset skirt fits and looks. Wearing a paperbag waist can be a bit tough though, so here are my tips:

  1. Wear it with a tucked in top. This tip is key! If you want to have a streamlined look, make sure the top is not loose and billowy. The top I chose is a knit, which tends to cling to the body, thus making it ideal for this skirt.
  2. Consider a crop top. Obviously this would NOT be for work. But if you’d like to take the Banana Republic paperbag waist lace inset skirt out on the town, pair it with a cute crop top. To keep the details of the skirt’s waist the focus, make sure that the top ends about an inch above the skirt. That way, the cute paper bag effect is not concealed.
  3. Bust out a bodysuit. Yes the bodysuit is perfect for the Banana Republic paperbag waist lace inset skirt. It keeps the top perfectly smooth and tucked in. In fact, I am going to hunt one down. If you have a good one, let me know!

Banana Republic paperbag waist lace inset skirt styled for a summer work outfit with a J Crew Navy bow sweater and Sam Edelman white pumps Banana Republic paperbag waist lace inset skirt styled for a summer work outfit with a J Crew Navy bow sweater and Sam Edelman white pumps

Since this is a summer look, I chose to wear my white pumps. I think they are summer essentials! Plus I think navy, khaki and white make for a fresh summer work look.

Banana Republic paperbag waist lace inset skirt styled for a summer work outfit with a J Crew Navy bow sweater and Sam Edelman white pumps

To stay with the color palette, I decided to wear gold and white jewelry.

Banana Republic paperbag waist lace inset skirt styled for a summer work outfit with a J Crew Navy bow sweater and Sam Edelman white pumps Banana Republic paperbag waist lace inset skirt styled for a summer work outfit with a J Crew Navy bow sweater and Sam Edelman white pumps Banana Republic paperbag waist lace inset skirt styled for a summer work outfit with a J Crew Navy bow sweater and Sam Edelman white pumps

Overall I am very pleased with the Banana Republic paperbag waist lace inset skirt. I plan on wearing it with many brights all summer long. My next combination will be with some bright yellow. Stay tuned on my Instagram to catch it!

Current Obsession: Colorful Striped Skirt

Hello friend! If you know me in real life, then you know that I don’t just have a mild interest in things. If I am into something, I am INTO it! Right now that something is the colorful striped skirt. It’s probably no surprise: I like color…I like stripes…I like skirts. Therefore it is very fitting that I like colorful striped skirts.

I have played around with colorful stripes before (multi-colored striped shirt). But recently my obsession has narrowed around skirts specifically. Let me show you how I am wearing my colorful striped skirts.

5 colorful striped skirt outfit ideas.

Bright and Work Ready Colorful Striped Skirt

When I saw the J Crew pop stripe skirt, I just had to have it. The bold colors and the stripes were exactly what I’ve been looking for. The cut and length of the skirt also ensured me that it would make a great work outfit. Therefore I immediately paired it with a scoop tee and heels for an office-ready look.

Colorful striped skirt for work: paired with a tee and heels the J Crew pop striped skirt adds color and pattern to an office ready outfit.Colorful striped skirt for work: paired with a tee and heels the J Crew pop striped skirt adds color and pattern to an office ready outfit. Colorful striped skirt for work: paired with a tee and heels the J Crew pop striped skirt adds color and pattern to an office ready outfit.

For accessories I thought it would be fun to bring in a second pattern. Therefore I added more stripes with my clutch. I also chose to showcase one bold piece of jewelry, my bib necklace. The necklace looks great here because the low scoop neckline of the top allows it to be the focus.

Colorful striped skirt for work: paired with a tee and heels the J Crew pop striped skirt adds color and pattern to an office ready outfit. Colorful striped skirt for work: paired with a tee and heels the J Crew pop striped skirt adds color and pattern to an office ready outfit.

Whimsical Colorful Striped Skirt

Another colorful striped skirt I have is a white A-line Kate Spade one that I purchased on vacation last summer. It was another case of love at first sight! The sweet pastels in these stripes make it so easy to pair with some of my favorite pieces. Case in point is this look below, where I paired up the stripes with polka dots, pattern mixing heaven!

Pattern mixing polka dot blouse with colorful striped skirtPattern mixing polka dot blouse with colorful striped skirt

It was equally fun to choose my accessories for this look: I simply used more colors in the skirt. I chose two shades of pink for my purse and shoes. As luck would have it, I also found a fun pink wall where I took the photos. With all of the colors in the outfit, I chose to keep my earrings neutral with a simple white pair.

Pattern mixing polka dot blouse with colorful striped skirt Pattern mixing polka dot blouse with colorful striped skirt Pattern mixing polka dot blouse with colorful striped skirt

Colorful Striped Skirt for the Weekend

Just in case you thought the colorful striped skirt was just for the work week, I also have a casual look. Here I am wearing the J Crew Factory sidewalk skirt with a fun graphic tee and denim jacket. I added a pair of pretty jeweled sandals and I’m set. Whether it’s running errands or catching up with friends, this look will work for the entire weekend.

Colorful striped skirt styled casually with the J Crew sidewalk skirt Colorful striped skirt styled casually with the J Crew sidewalk skirt Colorful striped skirt styled casually with the J Crew sidewalk skirtColorful striped skirt styled casually with the J Crew sidewalk skirt

The Colorful Striped Skirt Dresses Up

It is rare to find a colorful striped skirt for dressier occasions and styles. Therefore when I saw this long ball gown style skirt, I knew I had to have it. It is certainly not something I can wear daily. However, it is a long-term item, meaning that I can wear it for a long time. It’s not of a specific style or fashion that will go out of style. So as long as I’ll like color and stripes, I will like this skirt!

Colorful striped skirt styled for a special occasion with the Alice and Olivia Nicola skirt and Anthropologie denim corset cami Colorful striped skirt styled for a special occasion with the Alice and Olivia Nicola skirt and Anthropologie denim corset cami

I paired the skirt with a denim corset top. Because I wore the skirt with a denim top, I wanted to add more pops of color with my accessories. Therefore I wore my red pumps and fun yellow earrings.

Colorful striped skirt styled for a special occasion with the Alice and Olivia Nicola skirt and Anthropologie denim corset cami Colorful striped skirt styled for a special occasion with the Alice and Olivia Nicola skirt and Anthropologie denim corset cami Colorful striped skirt styled for a special occasion with the Alice and Olivia Nicola skirt and Anthropologie denim corset cami Colorful striped skirt styled for a special occasion with the Alice and Olivia Nicola skirt and Anthropologie denim corset cami

Neutral Colorful Striped Skirt

While I love a good colorful striped skirt, many of them are summer items (light weight material, pastel colors, etc.) and I feel like I can’t wear them year around. However this past winter I found this striped midi skirt. With its thicker fabric and darker colorful stripes, this skirt is the winter equivalent of the others! Hooray!

Colorful striped skirt for the office: add a chambray shirt and blazer for a pulled together work outfit Colorful striped skirt for the office: add a chambray shirt and blazer for a pulled together work outfit Colorful striped skirt for the office: add a chambray shirt and blazer for a pulled together work outfit Colorful striped skirt for the office: add a chambray shirt and blazer for a pulled together work outfit

For this neutral colorful striped skirt look, I paired the skirt with one of my go-to’s: a chambray button down shirt. I added a blazer and heels and the look is complete! I kept the jewelry minimal with a pair of pretty hoops.

Colorful striped skirt for the office: add a chambray shirt and blazer for a pulled together work outfit Colorful striped skirt for the office: add a chambray shirt and blazer for a pulled together work outfit Colorful striped skirt for the office: add a chambray shirt and blazer for a pulled together work outfit

So while I am very much obsessed with every colorful striped skirt I see, I don’t feel bad purchasing a few. Because they are so versatile and fit my style so well, I will wear them for a long time. I hope you won’t get sick of seeing them!

Current Obsession: Skinny Scarves

Hi friend!

Recently I’ve been obsessing over skinny scarves. I’ve always loved scarves, especially patterned ones. For  a while, large bulky scarves were in. The tide is now turning towards skinny scarves. I love them all, so I am ready to try this new trend.

As I have described in my shopping tips and accountability post about not immediately buying every new trend, I first turned to my closet. I found a couple in my stash. They were lightweight summer scarves, so I quickly wore them while it was still warm.

red white striped tee pink argyle skinny scarf

Here I wore it for a casual day paired with a striped tee and jeans. I like how the colors in the scarf repeated in the t shirt and accessories. Without the scarf, it’s just a t shirt and jeans look. But add the scarf and now you’ve got more interest with the added color and pattern.

red white striped tee pink argyle skinny scarf rebecca minkoff jumbo love bag

Another way to wear a skinny scarf is simply paired with a dress. Here I added it to a solid navy dress. I wore the scarf loosely to echo the unstructured look of the dress. The scarf stood out against the solid background. I also added leopard print shoes for extra interest.

navy dress with purple j crew skinny scarf

A third option is with jeans and a blazer. For this look, I chose to pair the skinny scarf against a lace tee. That way, the only print item is the scarf, so it stands out. The lace adds extra texture and interest which is key given the lack of colors or patterns.

blazer and jeans with lace top and cherry print printed scarf

Then the Nordstrom anniversary sale came along and I saw this skinny scarf. I wanted a more substantial piece that I could wear come fall. The colorway was also perfect: warm and neutral. So I ordered it.

Halogen® Floral Print Silk Skinny Scarf neutral black combo

I wore this scarf for work, paired simply with a pencil skirt and sweater. I added some personality with a casual half tuck and voila, outfit made!

j crew lavender sweater and leopard skirt with Halogen® Floral Print Silk Skinny Scarf neutral black combo

Isn’t it amazing how a small strip of fabric really brings an outfit together? A scarf can transform staple pieces into a “look” by adding another pattern, thus adding another layer of interest.

j crew lavender sweater and leopard skirt with Halogen® Floral Print Silk Skinny Scarf neutral black combo

How do you feel about skinny scarves? Are you up to try them this fall?

Current Obsession: Bandanas

Hello friend,

Like many of you, I like to participate in trends. This may be a challenge because most of the time I am dressing for work. Some trends are easier to make work appropriate than others. But honestly, I always try to challenge myself and try to work in new trends into my existing wardrobe.gingham bandana 3

Case in point is the bandana trend. There are countless outfit inspirations with this trendy item, and I tried a few for my days off. Here I wore it choker style layered with a dainty necklace, an off the shoulder top and white denim cut-offs.

gingham bandana shorts
Top: Maison Jules (available at Macys); shorts: American Eagle; booties: Jeffrey Campbell; necklace: Baubebar

I liked this look so much I wore it for Fourth of July.

bandana seersucker
Dress: Old Navy; shoes: Target

A comparable look was when I paired the red bandana with a pretty seersucker sundress.While I enjoyed these casual looks, I didn’t want to limit the fun. I couldn’t wear it the same exact way to work, but I could play with the trend in my way: use it as my whimsical piece and add some polished staple items to it.

white bandana 2
Shirt: Target; skirt: Anthropologie; booties: Jeffrey Campbell; clutch: Tory Burch

For my first work look, I paired a crisp white bandana with a chambray shirt, fun patterned skirt and white accessories.

white bandana 3
Sunglasses: Banana Republic; watch: Michael Kors; jewelry: Baublebar

Then I paired the bandana with a gingham print shirt and bright skirt. I even added a third pattern in a floral shoe. It was all very work appropriate and fun!IMG_8292 (2)

IMG_8256 (2)
Shirt: Banana Republic; skirt: J Crew via Thred Up; shoes: Nordstrom; purse: Rebecca Minkoff

So next time you see a trendy item, think twice before you dismiss it for work. Make your items work for you!

Is there a trend you’ve been wanting to try? Please share in the comments. Also continue this conversation with your friends by sharing on your favorite social media platform!

Current Obsession: Cut-out back dresses

Hello friend!

This session of current obsessions is about my new found interest in cut-out back dresses. Believe it or not, until this year I had not owned a backless or cut-out back item. This is in part due to a lingering insecurity from my teen years. As a teen I had pretty severe acne, including the dreaded bacne!

Thankfully after my early adult years, the acne situation resolved. But I was still insecure about wearing open back clothing (don’t get me started on swim wear!) because of residual scars and discoloration. Now that I am well into my thirties, I am letting go of all this self consciousness and embracing myself for who I am. Yes I may have some scars (don’t we all, somewhere?) But I am tired of making myself miss out on cute items to wear or fun activities to do because I am insecure about the way I look. I have done that far too long in my life. It’s time to live. It’s time to wear an open back dress and walk proudly!

topshop striped dress 2 (2)And walk proudly I did. I wore this Topshop dress to a concert just two weekends ago. It was a hot summer night. The side slits and the partially open back were welcome means of ventilation. The dress was perfect for the occasion. However, what was more meaningful to me was not just wearing the dress, but wearing it with confidence. I felt good and it showed!

With the success of the first dress, I did not deter from getting another that I had my eye on. This time it was a Loft dress. This dress had a criss cross back with a small cut-out underneath the criss-cross. The original one I tried on in store was a peach color. Two things were wrong with that item. First peach is NOT my color. Second, the light color made the dress virtually see-through. I’m all for embracing my body and showing some skin, but that colorway would have been verging on vulgar. So off to the internets I went and what do you know? It came in another color. My long time love. My favorite. My go-to … Chambray! I was all set to order. Sadly, my size was sold out online, but my good friend Kristen of Kleighstyle blog, was able to order one for me. The dress arrived in time for an outdoor family gathering. The dress proved to be perfectly suitable and appropriate for the event.IMG_7665IMG_7672 (2)

I chose to wear it with a chunky heeled sandal. I have learned not to wear heels for backyard parties. Why spend all night digging into the grass, not to mention ruining your gorgeous heels? I forewent a necklace for a gorgeous pair of  statement earrings from the fantastic jewelry designer Sheila Fajl. I loved the simplicity of the look with the wow factor of the back of the dress.

IMG_7692

What style or trend are you currently crushing on? Please share in the comments. Also, continue this topic with your friends by sharing this post across your social media feeds.

Current Obsession: Cut-off denim shorts

Hello friend!

I’ll admit it, I am late to this ubiquitous summer trend. Truth be told, for years I thought I was too old for shorts. Once I hit my thirties, I started feeling so self conscious about my age and fashion choices. I truly thought I could no longer wear certain things, particularly shorts. It wasn’t until I had dinner with a very fashion forward girlfriend that I realized how silly I was being. This girlfriend was a few years older than me and was rocking a great pair of shorts and wedges. It was tasteful, fashionable and completely age appropriate. So since then, I am rocking the shorts proudly.

I had to share a pair of my current favorites. I am truly obsessed with them. They are from american eagle outfitters. It’s the high-rise festival shortie. It has distressing as well as crochet detailing. I love when there is an unexpected feminine touch to an otherwise more masculine and edgy look.

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I also like how the cut of the leg are asymmetrical in that the outer sides are cut higher up. That creates the illusion of longer legs. Also the back hold is not stitched up. It naturally hangs down, which I don’t mind. It provides a bit more coverage.

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Besides this pair, I have a couple of others from old navy, target and american eagle. They all have their place in my closet and heart! Which shorts are your favorites? Please share below.

Thanks for stopping by and reading my thoughts. Feel free to share this post on any social media of your choice!

Elsie