Friday, July 25, 2014

Shopping Help: Dotty

Last week's Shopping Help stripe obsession was daring me to do one on polka dots.  I couldn't pass on that challenge, especially since polka dots have probably grown to be my second favorite pattern!

I used to think I wasn't "girly" enough of a dresser to pull off polka dots, but like most of my strange assumptions, I was wrong.  There are so many different types of polka dots (size, color, how far apart they are, etc.) as well as so many different silhouettes the garment can come in that I was silly to ever doubt there would be some out there for me.  

Here are a ton of fun options from Old Navy, Kohl's, ModCloth, Choies, and Forever 21.  Most are under $30-35 with the exception of a couple.  Many are under $20!

White & Black:  Option 1  |  Option 2  |  Option 3
Standard white with black polka dots make a great closet basic.  Above are a few different silhouettes, from more structured to looser to one with more details, but they all can be remixed over and over and over and over!  (See the ways I've worn mine here.)  

Notes: Options 1 and 3 come in a black base too.

Reds & Blushes:  Option 4  |  Option 5  |  Option 6
Let's deviate a little from a typical black and white look.  These blouses all toggle the line between being able to be dressed down as well as be made appropriate for work!  Pair easily with your favorite jeans and flats for casual, or pair with a skirt or work pants for an office look.  

Notes: Option 4 comes in white/black too.  Option 6 comes in 3 colors.

Sweaters & Dresses:  Option 7  |  Option 8  |  Option 9
Sweaters and dresses!  Don't kill me for mentioning fall in July, but I'm pretty sure you won't be sorry about a polka dot sweater.  Especially that beautiful gold/cream #8!  The dress can be worn for the rest of the summer or paired with boots and tights in the fall (and a mustard cardigan).

Notes: Option 8 comes in black/white too.

Skirts:  Option 10  |  Option 11  |  Option 12
Polka dot skirts!  These are all fun and a little flowy, but the dots are small so the pattern is subtle and can easily transition through different scenarios.  You can also wear all of these with sandals and a tee in the summer or boots, tights, and a cozy sweater come fall.

Scarves:  Option 13  |  Option 14  |  Option 15
Lastly, scarves.  I don't know what to say about this except, "SO CUTE!"  :)

Note: Option 15 comes in three colors (white/black and light blue/white) and is like $3 (!!!!!) with its current sale!

Um, I'm pretty sure #15 needs to come live at my house.  #amiright?

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Totes Magotes

That talk of neutrals yesterday got my own neutral juices flowing, which inspired today's outfit.  This black dress is about 5-6 years old, and just when I think it's time to put it to rest I find new inspiration to wear it.  I mean, can you really go wrong with a black dress?  Especially one that feels like pajamas AND fits you well when you're pregnant AND when you're not?  Sorry I ever tried to betray you, little dress.  Shame on me.

Let's talk about this tote for a sec.  I got it thanks to Fran (who, if you don't follow by now, you really, really should).  I can't tell you how long I've been drooling over the cognac Madewell tote.  Whenever I pass by a Madewell I walk in to creepily stroke the tote in admiration...and then wince at the $168 price tag.  Every time.  It's our little dance.

But one glorious day Fran linked to this tote from Nordstrom that's only $48 instead of $168.  AND, it's reversible!  Cognac on one side and black on the other, and you can switch between them as your mood or outfit dictates.  It's faux leather and pretty soft.  I'm definitely going to order a base shaper for it since heavily loading my old tote stretched it out and ruined it.  I've only tried it with a fairly light load so far, since I don't have a base shaper yet, so hopefully it holds up with more stuff in it...aka my laptop.  If not, I'll be more careful with it than I was with my last tote and use it for normal day-to-day things.  Either way, I'm glad to have a tote again, and especially one that's reversible!

Everything below is either Target or Old Navy and half of them are on clearance.

Links to Shop:
one  |  two  |  three
four  |  five  |  six

Shop for the Look:
Dress: Old Navy (similar, similar, similar--Target on clearance)
Jacket: Target (similar, similarsimilar)
Shoes: Target (exact)
Bag: Nordstrom (exact, splurge)

*Bump status: 36 weeks

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Style Help: Neutrals and Color Play

If you've read this blog for any amount of time you've probably picked up that I'm a huge fan of a pop of color.  While I oddly feel a little naked without some color in my outfit, even if it's just in a teeny tiny piece of jewelry, I really love an all-neutral outfit as well.  It just takes a little more courage for me to wear one!

Today we're talking neutrals and color.  Below I created 3 outfits where the clothes are all neutral and showed different ways to add color with the accessories.  Hopefully it helps give you ideas on how you can experiment with colors (or neutrals, in my case) a little more.

BTW, the top I'm using is awesome!  You have to click to the item's page to see, but it's spotted except the dots are irregularly shaped which I love.  Not only can you put it to good use in a lot of neutral outfits like the ones below, but it'll definitely go with more colorful pieces.  And it can be dressed up or dressed down.  AND it's $18!  

Outfit 1 - Casual 
I paired this top with longer shorts for a casual but clean look.  On the left is the outfit with neutrals to complement the neutral outfit.  On the right I used orangey-reddish accessories as pops of color against the neutral outfit.  One easy way to play with color is to match your shoes to your bag!

Note: Shorts come in 5" too, and they both have pretty good reviews online.

Shop Outfit #1:
Top: H&M
Shorts: Old Navy
White Tote: H&M
Black/Tan Sandals: Target
Orange Bag: Dorothy Perkins
Coral Sandals: Old Navy

Outfit 2 - Dressed Up Casual
I love to how boyfriend jeans look dressed up!  It's a great mix of casual and dressed up, so I never feel overdressed or underdressed.

In terms of color, in Outfit 1 I talked about matching your shoes to your bag, but an even easier way to add color is to only use color in one piece.  I kept the shoes neutral and used a mildly colored clutch on one side and a blue satchel on the other.  You could also do the reverse and wear colored shoes with a neutral bag.

Shop Outfit #2:
Top: H&M
Jeans: Target
Nude Heel: Target
Wedges: Target
Blue Satchel: Forever 21

Outfit 3 - Work (or Going Out)
I found a cute neutral fit and flare skirt to pair with this top, but you could also go with a khaki colored pencil skirt.

One way to play with neutrals without being really all neutrals is to stick with colors that are kind of in the same area as your neutrals on the color wheel.  For example, since this outfit has brown in it, I used tan flats that don't exactly match the skirt but are in the same color family.  And then I bought in an orangey tote which isn't necessarily a neutral but doesn't deviate too far from the browns either.  Even though I snuck some color in there, it doesn't look too crazy when paired with the browns.

On the right side I did the opposite and used complementary colors.  With the neutral outfit being a canvas to play with lots of color, I went with berry shoes and a green clutch, which are on opposite ends of the color wheel.  A neutral outfit makes a great playground to have fun with colors in small doses!

Note: These would both be great looks for work, except the clutch on the right side should be exchanged for a tote.  As it currently is, you could wear it for going out if you added some gold bracelets and a necklace.

Shop Outfit #3:
Top: H&M
Skirt: Target
Tote: Dorothy Perkins
Flats: H&M
Clutch: Dorothy Perkins
Pumps: CL by Chinese Laundry via Amazon (only $27!)

Which side do you lean towards more--pops of color or mostly neutrals?  How would you experiment more to expand your comfort zone?

Monday, July 21, 2014

Coral, Yellow, and Neutrals

I think it's safe to say yellow is my go-to pairing for coral.  When I first wore the combo, I think it was with coral pants and a solid bright yellow blouse, which was an enormous and daring color explosion.  Although I actually really liked it, it felt like a huge risk to wear such a bright color blocked outfit.  But since it's not everyday that I want that much attention I've learned to hone it in a little and use just accents of either color and a healthy mix of neutrals.  It's a great way to incorporate the colors without looking like a walking highlighter!

Links to Shop:
one  |  two  |  three
four  |  five  |  six

P.S. I was interviewed by Blogger's Closet, talking about style and morning routines.  Check it out!

Shop for the Look:
Top: Loft Maternity (exact; non-maternity: similar, similar, similar)
Jeans: Target Maternity (exact; non-maternity: similar, similar)
Bag: Target (exact)
Shoes: Old Navy (similar--super cute!, similar)
Necklace: Old Navy

*Bump status: 36 weeks

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