Thursday, April 29, 2010

Please Mr. Postman

Dress: Aqua via Bloomingdales, purchased with a gift card courtesy of Lucky Magazine // Necklace: Vintage via local antique mall, $8 // Sandals: Vintage, thrifted, $3

Sorry to disappoint, but I did not continue my progression of style-by-decade with today's outfit. I have always thought it would be cool to take the high temperature each day and dress like it's that year. So, if the high is 73 degrees, go for an early '70s look. I don't know how feasible it would actually be, especially if the temperature didn't fluctuate much. Anyway... back to today's outfit.

I was dressed for work this morning in some unexciting ensemble when... "Ding Dong!" The super friendly UPS guy handed me a package containing this sweet chambray dress. I changed into it immediately, barely remembering to remove the tag before heading out the door.

I actually wore it with a cardigan and heels for work. What you see here is my simple, more casual version, which I donned to walk the dog and grab dinner this evening. Much like my polka dot frock, I see this dress as a blank canvas, so this is definitely not the last you'll see of it!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

That '70s Outfit

Top: Vintage, thrifted, $1 // Skirt: Vintage, thrifted, $1 // Earrings: Target, $5 // Shoes: Target, $15

If yesterday's look was totally sixties, this one is all about the decade that followed. In my secretary blouse, apron-style skirt and clog-like shoes, I was feeling so seventies.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Sixties Mix-Up

Jacket/Shirt: Top half of a vintage suit via Wildman Vintage, $8 // Skirt: Old Navy, thrifted, $2 // Boots: Vintage Anne Klein via Wildman Vintage, $15 // Earrings: Target, $5

Another cool day gave me the opportunity to don this warm (but cheery) vintage suit jacket and my favorite boots. I felt like a first lady on top and a go-go girl on bottom!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Cold Snap

Jacket: gift card via Weardrobe contest // Scarf: Courtesy of LOFT // Pants: Vintage via Savers, $6 // Belt: Thrifted, 50 cents // Shoes: Kenneth Cole, thrifted, $4

Today I tried to maintain a springy mood despite the brisk temperatures by wearing some of my favorite seasonal details: a soft color palette, high waist pleats, floral print and oxfords. After many 80 degree days, I thought we were headed straight for summer, but I'm glad we're not quite there yet.

I didn't realize till after looking at these pictures that these pants are kind of...frumpy. Maybe I'm just so accustomed to skinny jeans that I can't handle a little volume. I think next time I'll cuff them a couple times and wear heels instead of flats. I still really love them.

Speaking of favorite trends, I'm putting together a post with my must-haves for spring. Hopefully I'll get it up this week along with Part II of my answers!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Answers: Part I

Thank you all for the interesting questions! Also, because I don't say it enough, a huge thank you to everyone who reads my blog: those who share their thoughts (I appreciate each and every comment), the quiet "lurkers" (because I know I often fall into that category) and other bloggers for all the inspiration.

This post was getting out of control, so I decided to split it in half. I've answered the questions in the order they were asked except for similar questions, which I've grouped.  

I think I remember you saying that you work at the LJ World? What do you do? - Emily Kennedy

What do you do for a living? -Francesca

I am a professional copywriter. Because I didn't really know what a copywriter was before I became one, I'll provide some explanation. Sorry if you already know this. Copywriting has nothing to do with copyright law (a common misunderstanding). Rather, I write copy. Copy is any text that appears on websites, in magazines and advertisements and so on. Right now I work primarily for Payless ShoeSource writing everything from shoe descriptions to site features to emails. For those who watch Mad Men, Peggy is a copywriter.

Until recently, I was also one of the writers of a weekly newspaper column in which people on the street are photographed and interviewed about their style. I quit because I was so shy about approaching strangers! (Emily: this was for, which falls under the World Company umbrella). 

Where do you thrift shop in/around Lawrence? -Stacey

In Lawrence, I go to the Social Service League, St. John's Rummage House and Goodwill. I'm anxious to check out the new Salvation Army, but I don't think it's open yet. In Topeka, I go to Maj-R Thrift. I don't thrift in Kansas City very often, but I have gone to Savers (in Overland Park), the Re-Runs Warehouse and the DAV. 

How is that sweet little puppy of yours doing? -wiley

Igby is great! Honestly, I didn't fully understand what I was getting into with a puppy. I actually tried to adopt an adult pug from our animal shelter, but someone who applied before me got to take him home. Though it's certainly a lot of work raising a rambunctious little one, it seemed like the universe brought Igby to me, so I'm pretty sure it was meant to be. He makes me laugh every single day, and our bond is unimaginably strong. I can't even remember what life was like without him. (While writing this gushy paragraph, I had to scold Igby twice! I guess I forgot to mention the biting and barking. Let's move on...)

He's getting big! He was a teeny tiny four-pound creature when I adopted him, and now he's an athletic 15-pound boy. He's lean with long legs, but he still has a bit of growing to do. We'll see if he becomes more stocky like a typical pug. He likes to play fetch, go on long walks, cuddle on the couch, rip paper into tiny pieces (one of his naughty habits), do tricks for treats and give lots of kisses (more like obsessive licking). He loves bananas and beer (don't worry, only a drop or two). Anyway, non-dog-people are probably rolling their eyes by now, so I will stop!

Do you have a dress code at work? -Clothes Coquette

Yes, I work in a business casual office. The main rule is no jeans, but other than that, it's laid-back. Pretty much any non-jeans outfit you see on my blog is something I wore to work.

What is your favorite animal? -Kathyrine

This is probably boring, but I think my favorite animals are dogs. I like pugs (obviously), Boston terriers, French bulldogs and English bulldogs best. Also, my mom had horses when I was young, so I've always admired their beauty and grace. When I watch old war movies, I'm always more upset when a horse gets hurt than a person.

What is your dream job involve you doing? -Kathyrine

I don't know what my dream job is, but it would have to be something creative, something that combines my verbal and visual interests and something that allows me to have some level of control.

Mine is really random, what made you decide to cut your hair? I love it but you went from really long to really short! -Celeen

I was just ready for a change. I experimented with my hair a lot during my freshman year of college and then decided to grow it out at the beginning of my sophomore year. After enduring a year or two of awkward in-between lengths, I finally had the long hair I wanted! I kept the same haircut for a few years but decided this past fall that I was ready to move on. I really don't feel attached to my hair. It grows back, and change is exciting! Right now, I'm really enjoying experimenting with different styles.

What are your favorite shops when you visit KC? -Senorita Fashionista

As I mentioned, I don't do a lot of shopping in Kansas City. When I need my Forever 21 fix, I'll go to the Legends, and I take occasional thrift trips to the area. That's about it! Let me know if you have recommendations!

Are you keeping the haircut short? Or going back long? -frances

I anticipate keeping it short for quite awhile. 

Who takes your photos? -Shauna

My boyfriend Travis takes most of my photos. When he doesn't, it's my sister Ella behind the lens.

Do you see yourself being a Midwest gal for life? Or do you ever think about moving? -WildBirdVintage

do you think you will stay in lawrence permanently? or do you see yourself in another part of the country (or world!)? -Lexie, Little Boat

I don't have long-term plans right now. I would love to experience other places, but I'm not the type to just get up and go without a plan. If an employment or academic opportunity in another part of the country presents itself,  I may very well take it. When I have a better idea of what I want to do, I might seek something out. At the moment, I'm content where I am.

Hot jock or sexy nerd? -OooKellyNicky

Sexy nerd without a doubt. 

Has your concept of Midwestern style changed since you've had your blog? Do you feel like you're still exploring what it means to be a Midwestern fashion blogger? -tastymoog

Because this blog is so inwardly focused on my daily outfits, I feel like I don't step back and look at the bigger picture very often. Also, I don't think the "Midwestern" designation is very sharp or concrete. I am, however, a product of where I come from, and I think that definitely shines through. Having this blog (and looking at other fashion blogs) has made me realize and examine the qualities of my style and attitude that stem from my Midwestern roots.

Over-the-top outfits that may be perfectly acceptable on the coasts would not really fit in here. I could wear them, but they wouldn't be understood or appreciated. Besides, that's just not me. My style definitely has a quieter impact. Classic shapes, prints and materials like denim comprise the bulk of my wardrobe. I think this reflects the simple, understated appeal of the Midwest.

Of course, that is a pretty sweeping generalization. Kansas, like anywhere, has an eclectic mix of style. I don't mean to over-simplify or reinforce Middle America stereotypes; I'm just speaking from my personal point-of-view.

I know that you do lots of thrifting and such, but do you ever splurge on a really, REALLY great piece? -CAR0LiNE

I do occasionally splurge, but $50 is a splurge for me. Sometimes I'll drop a large sum of money during a single shopping trip ($80 at Forever 21, for example), which I would think of as splurging even if the individual pieces are cheap.

This concludes Part I. More to come.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

A Clean, Well-Lighted Place

Blouse: Ann Taylor Loft, second hand, $15 // Jeans: Urban Outfitters, purchased with gift certificate // Shoes: Payless // Earrings: Forever 21, $7 // Bracelet: Courtesy of LOFT // Jacket: Collection via TJMaxx, purchased with gift card (see below) // Shoes: Payless

My brain is too fried to come up with transitions, so here is my random list of thoughts:

-It feels a little wrong to use a literary title for a post that has no relation whatsoever to the story, but what can I say? Hemingway is better at coming up with titles than me, and it was the first thing that popped into my head upon assessing today's neutral ensemble.

-This shirt does not fit that well, but I loved it too much to pass up. I decided to embrace its looseness wholeheartedly rather than trying to tuck or cinch. It looked best with skinny jeans, so I wore them even though I wasn't supposed to (at work).

-The rainy day was much cooler than I expected, so my faux leather jacket was definitely my best friend both inside the office and out.

-Ever since I chopped my hair off, all I've wanted to wear is huge earrings. After sporting the same pair pretty much every day, I finally got a few more pairs from Forever 21. This is one of them.

That's all for today! Feature

Check out for spring date outfit ideas from me and some of my favorite bloggers! Thanks, Glamour!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Repeat Offender

Shirt: Thrifted, $3 // Skirt: Courtesy of Little Boat // Belt: Vintage, thrifted, $1 // Shoes: Ciao Bella via TJMaxx, $30

Hello, lovelies! I thought I was going to have my answer post ready for you today, but it didn't quite happen. Instead, here is a picture of Sunday's outfit featuring the chambray skirt once again. Come to think of it, every item I'm wearing is a closet staple. The braided white belt and platform wedge sandals make frequent appearances on the blog, but the breton-striped sweatshirt has gotten little (if any) time in the spotlight. This is a rather disproportionate representation because I wear it constantly! It's my go-to "throw something on in two seconds" garment.

Until tomorrow...

Monday, April 19, 2010

Little House on the Prairie

Shirt: Thrifted, $3 // Skirt: Courtesy of Little Boat // Belt: Thrifted, $2 // Bracelet: Courtesy of LOFT // Shoes: Ciao Bella via TJMaxx, $30

The wonderfully sweet Lexie of Little Boat asked me recently if I wanted to do a little clothing swap. One of the items she sent me was this adorable and amazingly versatile chambray skirt. I've already worn it at least four times. For this look, I paired it with a peasanty blouse and simple accessories for a Stella McCartney feel.

Friday, April 16, 2010

A Little Birdie Told Me

Shirt: Takeout Girls via TJMaxx kids' section, $10 // Cardi: Poof via TJMaxx, $10 // Jeans: Tilt via Plato's Closet, $18 // Shoes: Natural Comfort via, $18

I locked eyes with this plaid shirt from across the store and fell in love instantly. Big bows never fail to win me over! The sunny yellow paired with the robin's egg blue is just so unabashedly sweet and springy. That's just I'm in the mood for right now.

 Thanks for all of your great questions! I'll do an answers post either over the weekend or on Monday.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Connect the Dots

Dress: Kieu's, $40 // Cardi: Poof via TJMaxx, $10 // Sash: American Apparel, $14 // Earrings: Target, $5 // Shoes: Lucky Brand courtesy of Lucky Magazine

As I promised myself I would, I conservatized this retro-inspired polka dot party dress for the office by covering up with a springy cardigan. Embracing the flagrant femininity of the frock wholeheartedly, I pulled the look together with a big floppy bow.

Hold onto your hats! I'm sharing with you an unprecedented (I think) three photos of a single outfit. What can I say? My photographer (boyfriend) out-did himself... and these pictures were taken after a couple of beers, so I was a little freer in front of the camera.

Ask Me

I'll have a legitimate outfit post for you later today, but in the meantime, I thought I'd follow the lead of other bloggers and open up the floor to questions from you. Use the comment section of this post to ask me anything you want, and I'll provide answers in a later post.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


Shirt: Kimchi Blue via Plato's Closet, $3 // Shorts: Insight, courtesy of gift card // Headband: Scrap fabric // Shoes: Chinese Laundry via, $10 // Earrings: Rose ring: Gift // Bird ring: Forever 21

Seersucker, pops of red to complete the patriotic palette, a dose of optimistic yellow for good measure and little anchors for some nautical flair. This little get-up had me feeling as American as apple pie, baseball and... processed cheese product. My boyfriend said I looked like Rosie the Riveter. I didn't like the comment at first because it made me feel costume-y, but what can I say? He's kind of right.

Monday, April 12, 2010

In Dreams

Dress: Tresics, secondhand, purchased with store credit // Necklace: Local antique mall, $8 // Belt: Tie from a jacket // Shoes: Payless

The other day I was lamenting about how I don't have any good casual spring dresses. Then, either as I was falling asleep or waking up, I semi-subconsciously remembered this dress and randomly thought to add this waist tie from a jacket. Sometimes I'll have little epiphanies en route to dreamland. They're not always fashion-related but are usually creative in nature. I wish it would happen more often! Does that ever happen to you?

Friday, April 9, 2010

Making My Marc

Shirt: Marc by Marc Jacobs via Gilt Final Sale, purchased with credit // Jeans: Tilt via Plato's Closet, $18 // Shoes: alice + olivia for Payless, $20 // Earrings: Target, $5 // Rings: Forever 21 and courtesy of Accessorize

I know I've reiterated it again and again, but I don't really care much about designer clothes. The main reason for this apathy is that I'm all about shopping on a budget. That doesn't mean I don't admire or draw inspiration from designer garments. And, if given the chance to snag a designer piece within my means, I'll jump on it! There is a certain level of quality and artfulness that comes with designer clothes.

So, when Gilt had a super sale on Marc by Marc Jacobs, I knew I had to get something! This quirky yellow top with basket-weave details was one of the items left in my size, so I grabbed it on a whim. It's pretty big on me, but I figure the A-line, trapeze-y shape kind of masks that. I'm still glad I got it. Do you own designer pieces? Which is your favorite? Or what is your dream purchase?

Oh, and if you haven't joined Gilt and would like to, click here.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

It's Now or Never

Dress: Forever 21, gift // Jacket (below): Vintage via Goodwill, $6 // Bag: Vintage via Goodwill, $3 // Shoes: Lucky Brand, courtesy of Lucky Magazine // Cuff: Courtesy of LOFT

I vaguely remember selecting this dress for my sister to buy me as a birthday gift about five years ago. After a decent amount of wear, it didn't leave its hanger for a few years. As I've mentioned before, I'm terrible about keeping stuff I never wear. It makes maintaining an orderly (and reasonably sized) closet nearly impossible! A stream of new items steadily flows in, and things rarely leave. 

As spring approaches, I've been trying to do a purge. The dress has been in my "try on before deciding" pile, so this morning I thought, "Either wear it today, or it goes!" I found myself pleasantly surprised. It fits me now much better than before. Definitely a keeper. 

While I know there are plenty of pieces that really do have to go, this dress made me wonder what else I'm taking for granted... How do you guys manage the ebb and flow of your closet?

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


Shirt: Forever 21, $12 // Skirt: Vintage, thrifted & hemmed, $1 // Necklace: Fred Flare, $11 // Shoes: Christian Siriano for Payless

Perhaps the ominous storm clouds, grumbling thunder and green-tinted atmosphere put my in a creepy-crawly mood, but all I could think of when wearing this outfit was the slithery quality of the necklace coupled with the snake-print of the sandals. It's actually a pretty innocent, girly look, but the subtle serpentine details temper the sweetness just a tad.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Subtle Salute

Top: Thrifted, $2 // Sweater: Forever 21, $23 // Pants: Savers, $5 // Earrings: Target, $5 // Shoes: Payless

Hello all! I've been having some serious camera woes, so that's why it's been quiet this week. Last night I was going to do an explanatory post with a Photobooth shot of me and Igby looking sad. Those pictures weren't turning out, so I decided the technology gods were against me and went to bed. The winds have shifted slightly today. My camera is still pissed at me, but I was miraculously able to import a few photos including the one above of Saturday's outfit.

I haven't really done much with this spring's military trend, but I picked up these army green pants (the picture didn't capture the true color) in hopes of making a small reference to that aesthetic. I kind of wish they had some cargo pockets. How do you guys feel about the cargo comeback or the military look in general? 

Saturday, April 3, 2010

What a Wonderful World

Top: French Connection via Plato's Closet, $14 // Jeans: Courtesy of Fossil // Shoes: Ciao Bella via TJMaxx, $30 // Bracelet: Courtesy of LOFT // Earrings: Creation Station (local shop), $3

When I left the house yesterday morning, it was dark and stormy, so I wore a happy yellow blouse in protest. When I left work, it was nothing but blue skies and sunshine. Worked like a charm! Hope you're all having a lovely weekend.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

A Short Story

Dress: Forever 21, thrifted, $5 // Shoes: Payless // Rings: Forever 21 and courtesy of Accessorize

Short dress + strong winds = a bad combination. Luckily, I was inside my office for a majority of the day, and I was wearing a precautionary pair of short shorts.

Oh, and short hair, too! There's still a hair tie on my wrist, so you know it's a fresh cut. Happy Spring!