Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Some Olive Love

Top: Buffalo Exchange  |  Skirt: Anthropologie  |  Belt: Thrifted  |  Shoes: Target

First of all, thanks everyone for your kind words yesterday.  Today is a better and easier day.  

I don't know why, but I don't think I've worn this skirt since the 30 for 30 ended.  I started to crave bright colors shortly after starting this blog and a neutral olive skirt didn't fit the bill.  And then once I found this bright green skirt, this little olive one didn't seem so fun.  But I'm giving it some love today.

Yesterday we went to a cooking class on marinades and rubs, which was pretty fun.  The teacher became more obnoxious over time as he tried too hard to be sarcastic and funny.  I felt bad for the poor assistants who had to work under him, but it was still an enjoyable time.

Anyway, yesterday I wore a sweater with a white shirt underneath, and though it was so hot I was resistant to taking off the sweater because they didn't provide aprons (weird) and I didn't want to stain my white shirt.  If any of you follow me on Twitter you might have read about how I'm amazing at running into door frames, cracking eggs on myself, and dropping things.  I cook often and I'm fine in the kitchen, but some days are just those days and I stub toes and drop things like crazy--both in and out of the kitchen.  Well, the heat eventually won and I reluctantly took off my sweater, but I'm proud to say that I made marinades, rubs, and learned to cut a whole raw chicken without getting anything on my white shirt!  Considering how clumsy I can be, I am very surprised I got out of there spot-free, but I don't think I'd dare try that again!

pleated poppy

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Comfort Clothes

T-shirt: Target  |  Sweater: Gap Outlet  |  Jeans: Gap  |  Wedges: Target  |  Belt & Cuff: Forever 21

Ugh, I had kind of a difficult night yesterday during a student event for work.  The event last night and an upcoming one stressed me out so much that I woke up at 5am this morning until 7am with anxiety.  

This morning I was still bummin' and it was hard to get dressed.  I just wanted to scrub out in a t-shirt and jeans, so I opted for my trouser jeans.  I'm coming to really love them.  I've had them for years and hardly wore them but a couple of pairs of casual wedges have made these my new skinny jeans, especially in the summer.  They give my legs room to breathe and still look neat and put together.  

As for the t-shirt, I remembered this picture I'd pinned, and since today's weather was cooler I welcomed the warm fuzzy sweater to comfort myself after a hard night.

Luckily I had a meeting scheduled with my pastor from church this morning, and after meeting with him I felt like a cloud lifted off me.  So don't worry about me, I'm doing well now, and glad to say I'm not looking so scrubby even though I'm still in a t-shirt and jeans.  :)

Monday, August 29, 2011

Tag, You're It. All of You.

Dress turned into Top: Forever 21  |  Shorts: NY&Co.  |  Flats: Gap Outlet  |  Belt: Forever 21  |  Bracelet: Target

Originally I wanted to wear this outfit with shoes like these:

Wouldn't that have been so hot?  I think those shoes would have changed and defined this outfit.  But I'm not wearing those shoes because although I found the mock pair at Target on clearance, when I tried to walk in them I thought I might break my ankles.  (How do people do it?)  I chose to keep my ankles in tact and had to return them.  Sad times.  I've been on the lookout for a pair of wedges with a thick black strap which I think would have the same effect.  It's one of those items that when I put on outfits I think, "Man, a pair of those would be really helpful right now."

Anyway!  So, I was tagged in the One Lovely Blog Award thing like a month and a half ago from Alyssa and I kept forgetting to do it!  So here it goes.  Seven random facts about myself:

  1. I had hair down to my waist until I was about 23.  My hair grows like weeds, so I've donated hair to Locks of Love three times.
  2. I took Tae Kwon Do when I was younger.  Through out high school I played volleyball and did track & field.  
  3. I considered majoring in Spanish Lit in college.  I love Spanish, but I'm glad I chose a different major!
  4. I barely talk about it on this blog, but singing and music takes up most of my time--for both my work and non-work environments.  
  5. When I turned 18 I pierced my belly button.  It's in the top three most painful things I've endured (since I haven't birthed children yet).  And 10 years later, my mom still doesn't know it's pierced.  Ha.
  6. It's pretty hard to gross me out.  However, I do get grossed out by my the two things I fear most: 1) Birds.  I've been pooped on plenty and have stories to tell.  2) Getting my eyeballs poked out...or anyone's eyeballs getting poked out, really.  
  7. Two of my favorite sounds are of heavy rain hitting my rooftop and of children laughing!  (Coincidentally, Van just wrote on her blog, "Is there anything better than a child's laughter?"  Nope, there isn't.)

And now I have to tag people.  I'd actually love to tag you ALL.  Really.  So I'm tagging you, and if you want to comment with 7 random things about you please do!  Or write it on your own blog and link it below because I'd love to know more about you!  Really, really, really.  I mean it.  :)

But I'm gonna call out the following people in hopes to add peer pressure and make you more likely to do it!  :D
Jess - Animated Cardigan

This is my chance to get to know more about each of you.  Please don't leave me hanging and don't be shy!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Brown and Teal

Dress: NY&Co.  |  Necklace: Nordstrom  |  Bracelet: Forever 21  |  Wedges: Target (shop)
This is for Kayla's Day 13 Challenge: Neutral with a pop of color.

I know I just wore this dress on the blog, but I took off the belt and threw on a fancy necklace in hopes that you wouldn't mind.  Did it work?  :)  I guess summer finally decided to arrive in San Diego.  It's been hot and kinda humid this week, and all I want to do is wear dresses.

I've already begun a marathon of a weekend, which includes almost 15 hours of singing and killing my fingers on my guitar, a women's event at church where we're each bringing a dish made from a classic family recipe, and friends staying at our house.  I needed one of my trusty dresses that feel like pajamas to help me make it through.  Then, add one of my favorite colors to accessorize with, teal, and call it a day.

I'm thankful that as impacted as my weekend seems, I can still find little pockets to be still and to breathe.  ...and write a blog post.  :D  Happy weekend!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

I Love Me a Dress and a Vest

Dress: Target (shop)  |  Vest: Old Navy (shop)  |  Belt:  H&M  |  Wedges: Target (shop)

I hadn't really bought vests before because my practical self would get the better of me when it said, "Vests are pointless.  They have no sleeves and won't keep me warm."  But after seeing how much layering with a vest could impact and define an outfit, I had to get one!  I'm trying really hard not to wear it everyday, but I really think I could wear this vest with every single outfit.  

And can we talk about this dress?  Newly bought from Target, and I adore it because I can imagine over 10 ways to style it through all four seasons.  I'm thinking of doing another "One Dress Many Ways" post with this dress and more options for colder weather.  One warning if you are tempted to get this dress: It shrinks in the wash.  Like, a lot.  I washed according to instructions and it shrank 2-3 inches!  Luckily, I dug the tag out of the trash and was able to return it with no problem.  But I think it's so versatile that I was willing to buy it again a size up and let it shrink to fit me.  I'll let you know how that goes!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Green Machine

Top: Forever 21  |  Belt: H&M  |  Skirt: Banana Republic via Buffalo Exchange (shop similar)  |  Wedges: Target

In 2004 an artist named Toby Lightman covered Mary J. Blige's hit "Real Love."  In her music video she wore a vibrant green pleated midi and I've wanted a skirt that color ever since.

When I spotted this green skirt Buffalo Exchange, I was all over it like white on rice.  I think my heart may have skipped a beat, and I may have hip-checked a girl as I bulldozed my way over to it.  You've gotta do what you've gotta do.

I can't get the color quite right in the pics (I'm no photographer...) but in person this green is so vibrant, and I LOVE IT.  It's Banana Republic, and it's 30% silk so it has a pretty subtle sheen to it.  And I also might have shrieked a little in the dressing room when I discovered it had pockets!

Toby made her green skirt outfit a little more funky with green suede pumps, a tank top, and a cropped jean jacket, and even though that was 7 years ago I'd totally rock that--but another day.  I wanted this skirt's blog debut to be sweet and simple.  I'm still in disbelief that I own this piece!  :D  Do you all have pieces that you are this excited about, or am I just silly?

pleated poppy 


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Three Cheers for 3 Years

Top: Target  |  Skirt: Loft, thrifted  |  Belt: H&M  |  Necklace: Nordstrom  |  Wedges: Target

Day 8's Challenge: Mix fancy and casual.  I'm not sure if this counts, but I gave it an earnest attempt.  I think the statement necklace really jazzes up an otherwise normal tee and skirt combo, yeah?  Mental note: get more statement necklaces.

In other news, today the husband and I hit 3 years of marriage!  I mentioned on Twitter that we celebrated this past weekend with a steak dinner and a sunset view, and we topped it off with white velvet cake.  Rule #1 of marriage: You have to eat good food on your anniversary.  If not for an excuse to eat good food, why bother getting married? 

Monday, August 22, 2011

The Woes of Triple Belting

Top: Buffalo Exchange  |  Cardi: H&M  |  Jeans: NY&Co.  |  Belts: H&M  |  Sandals: Target

Day 7 of Kayla's 21 Day Challenge was to layer accessories.  I've done this before with jewelry, so this time I wanted to try it with belts.  This was difficult for me for a couple of reasons:

#1 - It took a while to figure out which of belts could/should be layered.  I finally landed on using belts of similar width, and my best option was a pack of belts I bought H&M.  They also happened to go with the top I was wearing, which is the top I have to remix from Day 1.  Score!

#2 - Probably the more difficult thing was that wearing three belts meant I couldn't breathe or eat.  At first I convinced myself that breathing was overrated, especially since I got complimented on my belts at church, but when the belts hindered my eating, they had to go.  It was fun to try, and I still might do it again, but nothing gets between me and lunch.

Friday, August 19, 2011

The Wonders of a Belt

Day 5 of Kayla's 21 Day Challenge is "belt it."  Gladly, Kayla.

I'm guilty of belting basically everything (scroll down to other posts and you'll see...), but why mess with a good thing?

Let the record show what a simple accessory like a belt can do.  

I was in a hurry and needed a comfortable dress for the day.  Brown cotton jersey that I couldn't wrinkle even if I wanted to, check.  Cardigan to counter the chilly morning, (even though it's AUGUST and I live in SAN DIEGO.  C'mon, weather.) Check.  

But once the cardi was on, my outfit became sad and droopy:

Quick!  You're running late, Audrey.  Fix it, pronto.  Solution?  Throw on a belt.  Bam.  Stand in amazement that one accessory made you no longer look like you're wearing a sack.  Run out the door. 

Dress: NY & Co.  |  Cardigan: H&M  |  Belt: Forever 21  |  Wedges: Target

...and then get asked why you were so "dressed up."  For some reason I often get comments about how "dressed up" I am when I'm just wearing a cotton jersey dress.  Sigh.  (That's where the blog comes in--to connect with people who think wearing a cotton dress is cute, but not abnormal.)  But at least it's nice to know the belt worked in hiding the fact that I frantically just threw this outfit on.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Simple Makeup Organization

Okay, here's the deal.  I've seen really cool makeup organization videos from women who have huge makeup collections stored in a large vanity with drawers, cubbies, shelves, and all else that is an organizer's dream.

I enjoy makeup, and I wear it everyday, but I am far from anything like a makeup artist and I definitely don't have space for a huge vanity.  I own one piece of Mac makeup, and it's because my sister gave it to me. Nonetheless, I still want to keep my makeup orderly and easily accessible.  So here's where I get ready everyday:

 Makeup sits on top of a tall dresser.
Lighted mirror w/ 5x magnification on other side - Costco $20
My general rule of thumb: try to avoid the 5x side.  Not a pretty sight.

Flat, black rectangle is an 88 color shadow palette.  Cost effective way to experiment.

Makeup compartmentalized in a pencil tray - Target $4

From left to right...
Back row: eye shadow, fake eyelashes...never been used, haha
Middle row: eye shadow, powder, blushes, bronzer, etc.
Front row: q-tips & other applicators, lotion, primers & foundation, mascara & lip gloss

Brushes and pencils stored in tin can - Michael's $2
Can filled with bean bag / stuffed animal filler beads - Michael's $7

You crafty people probably have a more legit term for what those beads are called.  :)  I love them because they're smooth and don't scratch the brushes but they hold them upright for easy access! 

A second can of less used brushes sits across the way.

This is an inexpensive way to keep makeup organized for easy access.  It makes my mornings a lot simpler rather than having everything thrown into a drawer for me to fish through!

Thanks for touring my little makeup station!  Anyone else have one they wanna share?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Pink and Red and Floral All Over

Top: Kohl's  |  Skirt: Ann Taylor, thrifted  |  Wedges: Target (shop)  |  Belt: Forever 21

I wore this to church on Sunday, then out to lunch for Mexican food and boba / pearl milk tea / bubble tea...whatever it's called in your region.  Not the healthiest of eating days, but we made up for it the last two days with meals full of veggies and lean protein.  And loads of chocolate covered raisins.  Raisins...healthy, right?  

This is my first time wearing this skirt that I thrifted back in June, almost 2 months ago!  It's time this skirt got some love.  I loved it even more after pairing it with this red and white floral print top.  It made for a bright statement in the hole-in-the-wall Mexican joint, but after sitting for 2 months in my closet, I think it deserved a debut with a bang.  

pleated poppy

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Finding a Remixable Top

Top: Buffalo Exchange  |  Jeans: Gap  |  Wedges: Target

I originally had a post up about makeup organization, but at the last minute I decided I wanted to participate in Kayla's 21 Day Challenge!  The makeup post can wait a little longer.

The first day of the challenge was Monday, and the challenge was to choose an item to remix 3 times during the course of 21 days.  Having just finished the 30 for 30 Remix Challenge, you'd think I wouldn't want to remix anymore.  Nope!  I actually want to build my whole closet to be highly remixable.

I bought this top at Buffalo Exchange on Friday.  When deciding whether or not to buy a top, I now run through a quick, basic checklist for whether the top will be easy to remix.  It's usually:

  1. Does it look good belted?
  2. Can it be tucked into a skirt?
  3. Can I wear it by itself (or maybe with a necklace)?
Of course, there are other ways to remix tops, like with layering, but these are the very basic criteria for whether I will buy the shirt.  How do you decide whether to buy a top?

Participate in Kayla's 21 Day Challenge here!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Believe It

Top: Charlotte Russe  |  Skirt: Anthropologie  |  Belt: H&M  |  Wedges: Target (shop)

Would you believe it if I told you I bought this top 8-10 years ago?  It's moved with me to 6 different houses and is still in tact.  I found new life for it when I realized I could tuck it in to a high waisted skirt.

Would you also believe it if I told you I've had a sewing machine for 8-10 years and didn't know how to use it?  Whenever I saw bloggers like JodiRachel, and Bri hem something, cut off sleeves, or take in a garment, I wanted to pull out my hair because they made things look so darn cute, and all I could use my sewing machine for was to collect dust.  But, that's all about to change because I finally learned to use it this weekend!  So watch out, world, watch out.  Some horribly hemmed garments are about to come your way.  You won't even know what hit ya.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Tough and Soft

Top: Old Navy (shop...on sale for $13 right now!)
Vest: Old Navy (shop)
Jeans: Gap
Wedges: Target (shop)
Belt: H&M
Necklace: won from LuLu's (shop)

There's something fun to me about an army vest with a floral top.  Army inspired pieces make me think kinda tough while florals tend to make me think softer, and I think I'm liking the juxtaposition.

Anyway, as you're reading this, I could very well be at Buffalo Exchange, and I'm excited.  Seeing all these bloggers show off their thrifting finds has inspired me to venture out of my beloved chain stores bit by bit.  Are you proud of me?  Wish me luck!

Today my friend and I will eat Pho, come out smelling a little like B.O. (cuz you KNOW Pho makes your clothes and hair smell...), and head over to Buffalo Exchange.  Then I get to help her shop her own closet to hopefully discover more outfit possibilities!  Look out for a post on that sometime.

Anyone up to anything fun this weekend?

Thursday, August 11, 2011

One Piece Many Ways: My Oh-So-Popular Target Dress

Dress: Target (shop)

Yes, yes...you should know by now that I'm a major Target junkie and that this is one of my new favorite Target dresses.  And as I wrote about here, apparently I'm not the only one who likes this dress.  In fact, while I was at Target this week I saw yet another woman purchasing this dress.  Could I blame her?  Of course not.  But I do hope that I never run into her at a BBQ wearing it at the same time.

ANYWAY, since there's a high probability that I could find myself surrounded by other Target-loving women who will be wearing this dress, I thought I'd offer some ideas on how it (or any other dress, really) can be worn in different ways.  Here are just a few of them!

The Looks

Look #1:  statement necklace + dressy heels
Where:  I would this to a nice dinner or maybe even to a semi-formal outdoor wedding.  I find myself at a lot of those here in San Diego...and everywhere else, actually.  We were invited to 13 weddings this year alone!

Look #2: belt over a cardigan
I wear almost any dress with tights + boots in the fall and the San Diego "winter."  :P  A lot of different colored cardis would go with this dress.  Once I get my hands on a mustard cardi I'd do that with this dress for a funkier color combo.

I don't work in an office, but sometimes I like to pretend I do.  :)  When it's one of those days, I'd try the cardi + belt with close-toed pumps.

I'd also wear the cardi + belt with flats.

Look #3:  flats + cropped jacket
This is a more casual look.  I like pairing this with colors that pop, like turquoise and yellow.

Look #4: belt + sandals
I love the ease of this neutral belt.  I'd really wear this anywhere in San Diego on a normal day-to-day basis.  Casual, yet easy and fuss-free.

There are so many possibilities!  A black button-up collared shirt with tights, pumps, and a belt.  Black peep-toe pumps, tights, and a black cropped jacket with some bling.  A blazer and heels for a classic look.  It seems endless.

And that is why this is a new favorite dress...even if a million women across America have it.  :)

For other posts like this, check here: One Piece Different Ways.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Passed Up

Dress: Target
Belt: Forever 21
Bracelet: Kohl's
Wedges: Target (shop)

I've seen this dress on so many style blogs, but I also saw it in the clearance rack for $6.48.  Did you really expect me to pass that up?

Well, I probably would have passed up this dress had I not seen it on Kendi first.  It looks so plain and baggy by itself, but with a little belt and some jewelry it easily turns into a cute piece of work.  In fact, so cute that two Nordstrom saleswomen were talking about how much they liked my outfit!  Like I learned from Hillary Duff, accessories can really make or break an outfit, and it kind of feels empowering to see a garment and be able to imagine many possibilities for it instead of taking it at face value.  On the other hand, it also makes me take longer to decide if I want to buy it!

pleated poppy
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