Friday, March 30, 2012

Birthdays

Top: H&M  |  Blazer: c/o Daisy Rae  |  Grey jeans: Gap Outlet  |  Scarf & Shoes: Old Navy

Not much to say today.  As you're reading this, I'm probably coming back from my trip.  As I'm writing this, I need to pack for my trip!

What are you up to this weekend?  We'll be celebrating B's 29th birthday!  And mine is soon to come.  Sheesh, we're getting up there.  Any ideas for a 29th birthday party, btw?

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

45 Minutes

Top: Lace Affair  |  Jacket: Forever 21 (shop)  |  Jeans: Gap  |  Necklace: Forever 21  |  Wedges: Target

Did I mention that I'm traveling right now?  Yep, these are prescheduled posts.  :)  As you're reading this, I've taken a couple hundred college students to a retreat on a remote island campground with no electricity.  

I wore this outfit on Friday for all of 30 minutes.  Okay, maaaaybe 45m after outfit pics.  I worked from home, which meant I was in my favorite men's sweatpants until I had to run an errand.  I originally paired this top half with my yellow pencil skirt, and it looked fine, but I like the ease of the trouser jeans, plus they were calling my name.  Old habits die hard (re: my jeans rut).  Thrown together quickly, but I liked the outcome!  Note to self: repeat.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Rosettes No. 2

Striped tee: Target  |  Denim jacket: Forever 21  |  Skirt: thrifted  |  Wedges: Target 
Rosette necklace: c/o Seek First (shop)

You guys are awesome about all the skirt comments from Friday.  I totally forgot that 60% of my skirts are from a consignment / thrift store, like this one! (Also worn here.) My friend found it, and it was so pretty that I was jealously hoping it wouldn't fit her.  (Same friend that thrifted my denim skirt.)  It didn't, and before she could blink I swooped in for the kill.  Muahahaha.

And yes, it's this necklace again!  And no, I'm not just wearing it because of the giveaway.  I promise.  I'm really digging it.  I'd written off rosettes because I typically saw them on "cutesy," sweet looking girls or hip/trendy girls with cool colored hair...and neither of those felt like me.  But I'm finding that I can make this work too, and it turned out to be the perfect accessory for this outfit.  I've had the striped tee + grey pleated skirt combo in mind for a while, but the rosette necklace added just the right touch to give this outfit some personality.  I love this thing!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Win $25 to Seek First!


Remember the rosette necklace I wore on Friday?
This week is your chance to win your own rosette accessory!

Seek First is a darling little Etsy shop run by Lauren.
It's filled with cute rosette necklaces and headbands, as you can see above.



To win one of your own:
Visit Seek First and leave a comment here saying your favorite item.

Extra entry:
Tweet it and comment here.
ex. "I want to win one of @seek_first's cute rosette accessories at @puttingme2gther! bit.ly/GPfxqg"



If you're the winner of the Daisy Rae giveaway (Nancy T.), contact me by the end of this week for your prize.  Or it'll go to someone else!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Skirts and Rosettes

Top: Old Navy (shop)  |  Navy skirt: Forever 21 (shop)  |  Belt: Forever 21  |  Wedges: Target  |  
Rosette necklace: c/o Seek First (shop)  

Because of this colored bottoms thing I've been on a mad hunt for skirts since I started this blog.  Remember, I started with none.  Zilch.  And, I want 'em reasonably priced and modest!  Surprisingly, I found a bunch of skirts at Forever 21 that weren't too short, and this navy skirt is one of them.  So happy!  Where do you guys buy skirts?  (Besides Ruche and ModCloth.)  

Also, how cute is this rosette necklace?  Are you guys into rosette accessories?  I didn't think I could pull them off, but I'm kind of starting to love them.  And, good news?  YOU get a chance to win one on Sunday from Seek First!  Stay tuned.  :)

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Black Jeans

Blazer:  Forever 21  |  Top: H&M  |  Black skinnies: Forever 21  |  Belt: Kohl's  |  Wedges: Target  |  Ring: c/o Stella & Dot

Like I mentioned on Monday's post about the rat, I haven't taken new outfit pics, so here's an old one that was never posted.  Black and tan.  Easy enough, right?  Seems effortless, but for whatever reason it took me so long to put these pieces together.  I love when that happens, but at the same time I'm like DUHHH, how did that take so long?  

Anyway, Lauren from Seek First asked me if I thought black jeans were a good idea.  A while ago I would have said they were a waste of money as they're so similar to dark blue jeans, but nowadays I'm totally loving the nuance.  Can you tell?  I've got this outfit plus two recent outfits (here and here) with these black skinnies (which were $9.50 at F21, BTW!)  If you're contemplating black jeans, I'd say go for it.  Especially since different colored bottoms will make your wardrobe more versatile.  ;)

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Dots

Top: Old Navy (shop)  |  Red skinnies: Buffalo Exchange  |  Belt: Kohl's  |  Gold flats: Target

If you follow me on Twitter, you might have seen me drooling all over Merrick for this awesome top she wore a few weeks ago.  I try to avoid acting on impulse while shopping, but once I saw this shirt I knew it'd be a good buy.  I'm loving these little dots!

On another note, thanks for your empathetic comments about the rat situation!  I'm happy to announce that WE CAUGHT THAT LITTLE SUCKER!

Don't forget to enter the Mama Loves Papa giveaway!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Ratted Out

Tee: Target  |  Jeans: Forever 21  |  Jacket: Old Navy   |  Wedges: Target
Scarf: Old Navy (shop)   |  Glasses: GlassesUSA.com

See this outfit?  We have a special bond.  We've been to war together.  You see, I've worn this outfit for 3 days straight because instead of focusing on getting dressed, I've been at war with a sneaky little rat intruder.  Ugh.

The rat's been in our house for 4 days and we can't get rid of him, so a call to the exterminator is long overdue.  Some disgusting highlights of our rat adventures are: him eating 1/3 of a huge tomato on our counter. (How'd he get up there? he's so nasty...), sneakily getting bait off the trap without setting it off--while we were in the same room as him, and a sleepless night when we discovered he was in our bedroom cuz I woke up to him running across me (eeeek).  Disgusting.

On a happy note, I like this mint tee from Target.  And this Old Navy scarf!  But since I wore this for 3 days straight, outfit posts might be slim this week.  Another reason this rat's gotta go.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Win a Large Ad Space at Mama Loves Papa!


Hey everyone!
Have you visited Morgan's blog Mama Loves Papa yet?

Mama Loves Papa is a lifestyle blog where Morgan blogs about her family (those four cutie-patooties above), parenting, marriage, faith, and style, to name a few.  She hosts a weekly link-up called Small Style that features children's style, and she is currently doing a series on marriage.


I actually first met Morgan in real life through mutual friends, so I've gotten to play with those kids in person!  We soon found out each other had blogs (even though mine was only a month old at the time) and have kept up through blogging and Twitter.  Don't you love technology?




Giveaway

This week Morgan is giving away 1 month of large ad space on her blog!

One lucky winner will get to advertise their blog or shop for free!

To enter:
Visit Morgan's blog Mama Loves Papa.
Then, come back here and comment telling me your favorite feature/thing about Mama Loves Papa!

Additional entry:
Tweet it and leave another comment here.
ex. I wanna win 1 month of free large ad space from @mamalovespapa and @puttingme2gther! bit.ly/zoR6gh



Giveaway ends Sunday , 3/25  at 9pm PST.
Anyone from around the world can enter!







BONUS!


I'm giving away 1mo free ad space at Mama Loves Papa, too!
Go there to check it out.


Friday, March 16, 2012

Building a Remixable Wardrobe, Part 4: Layering Pieces


For the next section of the Building a Remixable Wardrobe series, I want to talk about the importance of having layerable pieces.  (Is that a real word?  Do you like how I make up all sorts of words in this series, like "layerable" and "remixable" and "reimagining"?  My spellcheck hates me.)



Layering, My Frenemy
Can I just say that I'm terrible at layering?  I don't like having to fuss with a lot of pieces of clothing because, you know...I like to able to do cartwheels in my outfits, just like everybody else.

Anyway, in my pursuit of a remixable wardrobe, I realized that I needed to make friends with layering.  I noticed that layering brings a new dimension and fresh perspective to pieces, and I knew it was the next step to mixing up my wardrobe.  It was helpful that I also realized that you can layer in a way that's impactful but not super fussy.  Yay!

Finding the Right Pieces
So then, I tried to layer.  And failed.  Why?  Because, like I mentioned in Part 3, I had built my wardrobe around jeans and a cute top, leaving me void of any good pieces to layer with!  I had to backtrack a little and figure out what kinds of pieces would help me be able to layer well.

And that is where we are going to start today.  I'm not here to teach you how to be a layering ninja, because I'm still not good at it, plus it's not really my style.  What I can do is show you a few pieces that you can use for minimal layering but that will still diversify your wardrobe.

Let's do it!



The Camisole - Boring, but helpful
I'm starting off with the least interesting of all layering pieces: a camisole, aka cami.  Do I need to say this?  Yes, I do, because I've heard so many friends say, "I never wear this top / I can't find tops because everything is too see-through or low cut."

And then I yell in outrage, "WHAT?  Just wear a cami!"  With the thin material that's out in stores, not wearing a cami really limits your shirt options.  I like to be fairly modest, so I actually wear a cami underneath about 90% of my tops and dresses.

I stock up on black and beige/nude camis when they're on sale for $3-5 at Old Navy, and I seldom have to avoid a shirt because it's see-through or too low-cut.


from oldnavy.com


If you, too, have avoided tops because they were too see-through or low-cut, wear a cami underneath and let yourself finally wear those cute tops you've been avoiding!  Got it?  Good.  :)

Now that that's out of the way, let's move on to the rest...



The Completer Pieces
I feel like a broken record talking about "completer pieces" so much, but I love them and think they are such an easy way to remix your wardrobe.  So, we're gonna talk about them in depth.  :D


Colored Cardigans
Cardigans are the easiest layering pieces for me, but prior to this blog I wore them in a way that didn't serve well for remixing.  I'm always cold (yes, even living in San Diego--I'm a wimp!) so I always had a cardigan, but only grey or black--whatever matched.  I wore them only for utilitarian reasons and never thought to actually utilize cardigans as significant pieces that could change up my outfits.  They can be both utilitarian and significant pieces to your outfit.  Cardigans are a great way to add color and interest to your outfit, and doing something as simple as changing the color of a cardigan can go a long way!  

For example, using different colored cardigans can be a simple way to remix a dress:


Or this example that I've used so much...

Different colored cardigans can also be a great finishing touch to enhance a typical jeans + cute top combo:

The two pics with the floral top are virtually the same outfit, just with different color combos!

Imagine any of the outfits in the three sets of pics above with just a grey or a black cardigan.  Most of them would be drab and monotonous!  Again, colored cardis are such an easy way to bring diversity to your outfits.

Patterned Cardigans
Patterned cardigans are fun because they add an extra notch of visual interest!  I only have one, my striped cardigan, but there are plenty of other patterns you can get: polka dots, floral, animal print, and geometric prints, to name a few.

In these outfits, the striped cardi is the focal point:


Imagine each of these outfits by themselves.  They would just be a plain maroon tee and jeans, a simple white tee + yellow skirt combo, and a simple grey dress.  The striped cardigan changes up each of these combos and pulls them together to create a more interesting outfit.

Fun cardigans are a very simple way to change up your outfits.  Bonus: they keep you warm, too!

(Kristina J. also recently wrote a post on the impact of a cardigan.  I love her cardigans, so be sure to pop over to her blog!)



Blazers + Jackets
Do I need to tell you how much I love blazers and cropped jackets?  I'm a broken record, truly.

If you look through my blazers label you'll see that so many of my outfits would just be bottoms with a boring shirt without the blazer.  You can get a fitted cut, boyfriend cut, tweed, corduroy, linen, colored, blah blah blah.  There are so many options and they are so versatile!  

Blazers and jackets can be worn over anything:
  • jeans + shirt
  • dresses
  • skirts + shirt

I didn't create a picture because there are too many possibilities.  I mean, even if you look at these two pics from Part 3 of this series, not only do those outfits use different colored bottoms, each one also has a different completer piece.

Pics originally seen in Part 3 of this series




Vests
I didn't own a vest because I thought they were the biggest waste of money.  As someone who's always cold, I didn't want to pay for a garment that had no sleeves because I needed all the warmth I could get.  But seeing Kendi remix her army vest in 50 billion ways gave me a change of heart as I baffled at how many ways you could remix it.

Here are a few ways you can wear one:


While something like a cargo vest is absolutely versatile, what I actually appreciate about it more is how distinct the feel of a vest is compared to a cardigan or a blazer.  A vest can change an outfit SO MUCH.

For example, in the second pic with the vest + tank top, the base of the outfit is exactly the same as shown earlier in this post in the cardigan section--the outfit with the green cardigan.  But the respective finishing pieces of a cardigan and a cargo vest make the outfits feel so distinct that you don't even notice that the jeans and top are exactly the same.  

Side by side:



Likewise, check out how the blazer and army vest each create a distinct outfit over essentially the same combo of a striped tee and jeans.


Hopefully you now understand why I talk about "completer pieces" so much!  They can totally change up your wardrobe, so utilize them!



Long Sleeved Button-ups
And finally, moving away from completer pieces, let's talk about long-sleeved button-ups.  I didn't own any before this blog, but I've found them to be extremely useful in changing up my outfits.  Button-ups are nice because, while the completer pieces I previously mentioned go on top of the rest of the outfit, button-ups do both, layer underneath something and layer on top of things.

There are so many types of button-ups to choose from: the standard white button-up, silk blouses (or ones that feel similar), gingham/plaid shirts, chambray, etc.

Here are a few examples of how to layer a button-up:


Layering Under
One thing to note is that when layering under a sweater or cardigan, I love to let part of the shirt's sleeves poke out past the sweater or cardigan's sleeves.  I think it's so cute and adds another dimension to the outfit.

Layering Over
I typically used to think of layering button-ups underneath things, so I was amazed to learn that you could wear them over things like dresses, tees, and tanks like in the bottom row of the picture above.  This opened up so many more outfit possibilities for me.

Bottom Row, pic #1
In the first picture of the bottom row, I'm actually wearing a dress, not a skirt.  I layered a white tank over the dress, and then layered the denim top over.  I don't have good dresses for layering a denim shirt on top of a dress, but I think the look is really cute.  Here are better examples from other bloggers:
1 - unknown, found at seek first
2 - M Loves M
Bottom Row, pic #2
I tied the denim shirt over the same dress in the very first set of pictures of this post.  layering the denim shirt on top totally makes the dress look like a skirt!

Bottom Row, pic #3
And finally, a plaid button-up open over a tee or a tank.  I love the easy, laid back feel of this.

Try experimenting with your different button-ups, like the ones mentioned before: standard white button-up, silk blouses, plaid, gingham, and chambray tops, etc.  There are a lot of ways you can use them to remix pieces you already have!



This post was way more involved than I intended it to be, but hopefully you've gotten a sense of how you can utilize layering not just to keep yourself warm, but to remix your wardrobe as well.  

Have a great weekend, and happy remixing!


Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Putting Her Together: Kelly's Closet

It's been a loooong time since I've done a Putting Her Together post, but I finally have one today!

In a jeans and plain t-shirt rut, Kelly had been reading my blog and reached out to me asking if I'd be willing to go through her closet to help her create more outfits.  Since it turns out she only lives 15 minutes from me, I happily obliged!

We forgot to take a "before" picture, but Kelly was wearing what she claimed to wear pretty much everyday, jeans and a plain black tee, basically wearing exactly what Hannah is wearing here.

Though jeans and a plain t-shirt were her uniform, Kelly had a lot of cute tops, a cute skirt that she never wore, a couple of dresses, and a few blazers and cropped jackets that were hardly put to good use.  

Today I'm showing you some of the outfits we created.  I also pulled out some easy things you can try as first steps to discover new outfits in your own closet.  I hope this is especially helpful to those of you who also find yourselves in a rut!



1.  Add a Blazer - Spicing Up Jeans & a Tee
First of all, you don't have to scrap the jeans & tee combo completely.  In fact, I happen to love it!  But, by itself it can be boring or even sloppy, so let's talk about how to make it work.

One very easy way to make a jeans & tee combo look more polished is to simply add a blazer or a cropped jacket.  In Building a Remixable Wardrobe, Part 2: Shopping for Remixable PiecesI touched on the concept of "finisher" or "completer" pieces.  These are things like cardigans, blazers, cropped jackets, tweed/denim/faux leather jackets, etc.  Adding one of these can instantly make your typical jeans & tee outfit into something that feels more put together and polished.


While looks 1 & 4 may be able to stand without the jacket/blazer, looks 2, 3 & 5 would be completely drab.  The shirts underneath looks 2, 3 & 5 are simply tank tops, like the kind you might use for working out.  But, add a blazer or a cropped jacket and you've instantly created a cute, put-together look!

(If you don't have any blazers, cardigans, or cute cropped jackets, you might want to consider putting them on your shopping list!)



2.  Utilize Skirts
...or buy some, if you don't have any.  This is a lesson I had to put into practice myself.  If you only wear jeans, one easy way to freshen up your outfits is to own a skirt--if it's patterned, all the better!

I talked about this in Building a Remixable Wardrobe, Part 3: The Importance of Colored Bottoms, and I cannot stress how much this simple thing will diversify your wardrobe.  If you are always wearing jeans or dark colors on the bottom, getting dressed feels drab no matter how many cute tops you have because you always force the top to carry the burden of providing interest for your outfit.  It feels so refreshing to instead move the visual interest of an outfit to the bottom half with a patterned skirt.


Kelly's sister-in-law gave her a very cute skirt from Paris that she hadn't worn, so we got to play around with it:




Some people are scared of patterned skirts because there's too much going on and they don't know what to pair with them besides black/white/grey.  Don't let patterned skirts scare you!  The simplest way is to choose any color that is already in the skirt and pair it with a top in that color.  It's that easy.  :)

In Kelly's skirt above, there are greens, yellows, oranges, and maybe some pink hues.  We pulled out the green from the skirt by pairing it with a beautiful green shirt that Kelly had.  I can't remember if she had never worn it or only wore it with jeans, but we found a refreshing use for it with this skirt.

And, in true Building a Remixable Wardrobe fashion, we tried it tucked in (pic 2) as well as open and used like a cardigan (pic 3).

For another outfit option, Kelly's best friend who joined us suggested pairing the skirt with a white tank, which was also cute.  Then we pulled out the yellow in the skirt and finished off the outfit with her cute cropped yellow jacket (just like in section #1 about completer pieces)!  So cute!




3.  Changing Up a Dress
Kelly had a couple of dresses that she mostly wore alone, so we tried two things to liven them up.

Add a Completer Piece
First, we used trick #1 and added completer pieces, specifically in contrasting colors.  (Have I convinced you yet that completer pieces make life easier?)  I love using contrasting colors because they provide more personality and visual interest versus switching between, say, a grey cardi and a black cardi.  The contrasting colors help the dresses pop.  

Create a Central Focal Point
Sometimes when a dress is a uniform pattern or color, a completer piece still doesn't create enough visual interest to make the outfit feel complete.  (Contradictory, I know.)  When that's the case, I try to create a central focal point to pull the look together.  Two easy ways to do that are by adding a long necklace or a belt.




Create a List
While playing with Kelly's clothes, we also created a list of other pieces she might want to buy in order to round out her closet.  In the process of creating outfits, there were a few times where I wished we had x, y, or z.  If I found myself repeating an item it went on the shopping list because it was easy to tell that those would be of good use to help Kelly create/complete more looks.

Everyone's list will be different, but I'll give you a few of Kelly's in case it sparks ideas for yourself.

I can't remember them all, but some of them were:
  • Medium width belt - she only had a skinny and a wide belt, as seen in pics.
  • Teal necklace (?...can't remember) - would spice up any outfit in sections 1 & 3, especially as a contrasting color to the red dress.  This one is awesome.
  • 1-2 more skirts with structure, color/pattern
  • Red shoes - they'd pop all of her outfits!



Kelly's looking so cute in her new outfits!  When she emailed me these pics, she also wrote:
I have already worn a few of the outfits that we picked out and have been trying to talk myself into being more adventurous when getting dressed. It's going to be a journey but I think I'm on the way to a happier relationship with my clothes and also with shopping! 
I'm soooo glad to hear that!  If you too have been in a rut, hopefully some of these tips will help you also begin the journey of a happier relationship with clothes.  Good luck!  :)


Part 4 of the Building a Remixable Wardrobe series is soon to come.  Topic: Layering!


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Worn Out

Dress: Target  |  Jacket: Forever 21 (shop)  |  Belt & Shoes: Target  |  Necklace: World Market

I first wore this outfit to church two Sundays ago on an 85 degree day.  It was far too warm for the jacket, but I liked the olive/cognac combo so much that I left it on as long as possible, just before I almost passed out from heat exhaustion.  The things you do to preserve a good color combo.  (Okay, hopefully you know that I'm just kidding....)  I've worn this outfit a few more times since then, too.  I can't help it!  It feels very "me," and when I find a good thing I like to milk it for all it's worth.  

But maybe I need to stop doing that.  Case in point: I wore my favorite skinny jeans so much that I ripped a hole in the seat of them.  I realized it this Sunday when I felt the chair on my skin at church.  I had been walking around before discovering it, so I really hope I didn't accidentally moon anyone!  Sad times for my jeans, but funny times at church.

Green: Everybody, Everywear

Monday, March 12, 2012

Springy Saturday

Top: Forever 21  |  Cardigan: Target  |  Belt: H&M  |  Teal cuff: Forever 21  |  Wedges: Target

It was yet another springy San Diego Saturday and I was trying to avoid my typical weekend uniform, but I wasn't about to get all fancy just to go to church for worship band practice.  The breezy weekend air made me reach for lighter pieces--a lace top, boyfriend jeans, and nude wedges--and I topped it off with a mustard cardi.  If you're looking for easy, jeans, a top with some interesting details, and a colorful cardigan will always be your best friend.  Casual, but still put-together.  Just the way I like it.



And, the winner of the Daisy Rae giveaway is Nancy T!


Email me to get your prize.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

11 Random Things


I was tagged by Stephanie for an 11 Random Things post.

Normally I hesitate about doing these since this is a style blog, but I was traveling again all last week and need a little break from the normal outfit post.  And, I figure once in a while you might want to know random things about me.  Maybe?  :)

Also, there were a lot of rules and questions to answer and to make up, and since I was traveling, my brain isn't working.  So I simplified it to just posting 11 random things and tagging some peeps.







11 Random Things

1.  I am insanely amazing at getting cavities.

2.  I think I've had two sips of coffee in my life.

3.  My current favorite pair of pants are my pajamas--men's sweatpants!  Don't judge.

4.  If I wasn't in my current job, I'd be a Marriage & Family Therapist.  Or a personal stylist.  :P

5.  I've sung in front of 18,000 people, and I'm gonna do it again in December!  (That's why I'm traveling so much this year.)


6.  I sleep with my eyes part way open.  Not on purpose.  I told you, my eyes are kind of big.

7.  I had braces for 7 years.

8.  I have a younger brother and an older sister, and 3 half siblings who are nine, four, and two.  My siblings and I hardly look alike:

from 2009

9.  I don't really like Glee but I watch every single episode.  I also watch The Biggest Loser, Grey's Anatomy, and Modern Family religiously, but I actually like them.

10.  Since high school, I've wanted to be the singing voice of a Disney movie character.

11.  Superhero power of choice: flying.  Easy.




Tagging:

Merrick - Merrick's Art
Jodi - Life and Oh La Dee Dah
Jess - Animated Cardigan
Caitlin - Greater Than Rubies
Heidi - Literate & Stylish
Morgan - Mama Loves Papa
Sarah - Just Take a Bow
Leigh - The DayLeigh
Kristina - Kristina J.

(For the original "rules" and other questions, go here.)

Enjoy your weekend!
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