My Style

Why I Participate in Style Challenges

Hello friend!

For this post I thought I’d do something a bit different and discuss why I participate in Instagram style challenges. My friend Mandy from Musings of a Shopaholic Mama did a similar post on her blog and I was inspired to do the same.

When I first joined Instagram, I was itching for a forum to express my love for fashion. While I truly wanted to start a blog, I could not find the time to do so. So instead, I started an Instagram account and went about posting my outfit photos.

At first, I really had no idea what I was doing. I didn’t even use hashtags on my first posts (the horror)! But then I noticed what the other girls were doing and started to emulate them. I started using hashtags like #ootd and #wiw. But then I noticed some hashtags that did not make as much sense. After some investigation I found out these were style challenges. Well I couldn’t think of anything better than a bunch of ladies trying to dress creatively, so I quickly joined the group.

So now it’s been over 2 years that I have been on Instagram and I am still participating in many style challenges. I have even co-hosted a few. I still enjoy participating for multiple reasons.

First, style challenges have truly increased my sense of style. Because of style challenge prompts, I have pushed myself to try many new outfits. Sometimes it is simply a new item I was weary of trying. Other times, it is a particular color or pattern combination.

One of the style challenges I participated in years ago had a prompt of “mustard and mint.” I was shocked that this color combination could work. But I put my doubt aside and attempted the look. Surprisingly, it worked out very well. I have since used this combination multiple times and even have a post about it here.

Mustard and mint pattern mixing outfit

A recent style challenge used a color combination prompt of mustard and scarlet. That color combination was another one I had yet to try. In the end I loved the outfit I came up with so much that I am currently working on a blog post on it, so stay tuned!

Another reason that I enjoy style challenges is to push myself to try new items.  My two recent pushes are attempting to wear leggings (outside of the home) and ponchos.

When it comes to leggings, I have not worn a pair out as pants for decades. However, I saw many girls doing it and looking fabulous to boot! As it kept coming up as prompts in my style challenges, I decided to try a pair. I started out a bit safe and purchased a pair of moto leggings for a recent trip. They looked comfortable and stylish at the same time. I am now a legging fan. You can anticipate another blog post on that to come as well!

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Similarly, I just didn’t see myself wearing a poncho outside of a very casual setting. Then I saw my Insta-pals wearing beautiful ponchos for all sorts of occasions. I quickly set out to make my own attempt at a dressier poncho look and came up with this look and post.

poncho and lace for neutrals style challenges

Lastly, and most importantly, my participation in style challenges has led me to meet incredible people and make real true friends. It’s so exhilarating to be able to meet people across the country (and world) who have similar fashion sense and passion as you. I am so thankful for these girls. They are there daily to encourage and uplift me.

Because of all the reasons listed above, I will continue to participate in style challenges. If you have yet to try one, what are you waiting for? It’s time to join in the fun!

I have linked any of the items from this post that are available for purchase below, just in case you are interested!

Go-To Look: striped dresses + scarves

Hello friend!

In this series I’d like to share simple go-to looks that will always work for you. This past week I had one really rough day. I truly did not want to go to work. I was not feeling well. But I had to go in as I had a few meetings I could not miss. So I forced myself up and dragged myself to my closet. Needless to say, I was in no mood to dress up (gasp! it happens!). With very little energy available to create a unique look, I turned to one of my old stand-bys: a striped dress with a patterned scarf.

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Dress: Target; scarf: Old Navy; shoes: Nordstrom; purse: Rebecca Minkoff

The simplicity of a striped outfit paired with a bold floral print just screams happy and pulled together even if you don’t feel that way. I got many compliments that day despite feeling unwell.IMG_7965 (2)

This look works with both swing style dresses shown above as well as more fitted dresses like below.

red stripes
Dress: Kohls; vest: Express; scarf: Norstrom Rack; shoes: Nordstrom

This look is also ideal for travel. The dresses and scarves do not take up too much valuable luggage space. They are comfortable to wear, work for many occasions and will not wrinkle easily. Can you ask for more?

napa stripes
Wine tasting in Napa; Dress: Target; scarf: Nordstrom Rack; sandals: Target
germany stripes
Sightseeing in Germany; Dress: Target; scarf: Nordstrom; sandals: Bloomingdales

What are your go-to outfits? Share in the comments. Also please share in your social media posts by clicking on one of the share buttons!

My Style Evolution

Hi friend,

As you may have noticed, I have a pretty set style now. I know what I like. I know what works for me. I know how I want to look. Most importantly, I know what I have to do to get the look. But I can assure you, that was NOT always the case. Let me take you back to the original days of my look and let’s see how I evolved.

Disclaimer: The photos on this post are old and some are from an iphone. Please forgive their poor quality as these photos were taken before I had the blog. I chose to include them as they are authentic and will showcase my journey honestly.

We will start with my first year of working in my career field (before then, it was just years of standard student wear: jeans and sweatshirts, you’re not missing anything!) I remember my first few paychecks feeling so excited. I finally had money to spend on quality items. I had a fondness for Anthropologie, especially their beautiful skirts. I purchased many cute and unique pieces from them.

2839_179931360413_5188443_nAs the first few years went on, I noticed that even though I had many cute items, I always wore them the same way. I tended to buy my clothes as “outfits” and wore them only with that initial pairing. Case in point this outfit on the left. I adored this skirt, but for some reason, I could not find another way of wearing it. I found a shirt in the same shade as the detailing on the bottom and I wore the two items together as a set each time.

As I contemplated my closet items and fashion style, I was starting to read articles in magazines about mixing and matching items in your closet. I looked around mine and felt I could not do so. I realized that a lot of my pieces were fun and whimsical. They paired great with the specific item I had purchased it for, but would not go with others. My A-ha moment was when my cousin pointed out I didn’t have any staple pieces. My closet was full of fun one-off pieces.

After that realization I started investing in staples. Enter J Crew into my life! I became a big fan of their pencil skirts and cardigans (I have countless Jackies!) Then I was able to mix and match my cute whimsical items with timeless classics to alter the look I wanted.

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Still a few years later, while I loved my wardrobe, I often felt I had nothing new or exciting to wear. The solution to this could NOT always be to buy new things. That’s just not practical or reasonable.

This was my first pattern mixing attempt. I was so self conscious about it all day at work.
This was my first pattern mixing attempt. I was so self conscious about it all day at work.

This was also the time that I started reading blogs, specifically those that involved my favorite stores like J Crew and Anthropologie. I was majorly influenced by Lisa of Respect the Shoes. She did amazing pattern mixing. I started to give it a try.

I realized with pattern mixing, I could drastically change up my look and have multiple new options to pair with my items. I no longer had to have a solid cardi of every color to pair with a skirt. I could now pair 2 printed items together!

That brings me to my current state: a girl who loves colors and patterns, especially when put all together! But our styles are always changing. I look forward to see where my style goes next.

How has your style changed over the years? Please share in the comments. And while you’re in the sharing mood, feel free to share this post on your fave social media sites!

Introductions are in order

Hello friend!

It is with great excitement that I write my first fashion blog post. I say “fashion blog post” because I’ve had some experience with a blog before. I blogged my first few months as a new mom. Fashion blogging, however, has always been a passion of mine. While I was on maternity leave, I would voraciously read my favorite blogs and dream of the day that I would have time to write one of my own. Well, that time never came. But I will nonetheless attempt to start my blog and pursue my passion for fashion!

So you already know that I am a mom. My daughter is now 6 years old and a fashionista in her own right. I am also a working professional in the medical field. I work in pediatrics. In fact it is that setting that has spurred my fashion style. Because I work with children, I opt to wear fun and whimsical pieces as well as bright colors. Because I work in a hospital and have to look professional and knowledgeable, I tone down the whimsy factor with more polished and tailored pieces, hence my style, polished whimsy!

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In this blog, I hope to share my personal style and opinions with you. I appreciate you reading my words and being my blog friend!

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