Cool Copying: Why I Never Get Rid Of Stuff

Okay, maybe that’s a lie.  I get rid of A LOT of clothes to be honest.  I resell stuff on Poshmark, I trade it in at my local resale store, and I donate stuff to friends and thrift stores.  There’s no WAY I could keep everything, because then I’d be a legit hoarder and you would find me buried under mounds of supposed-to-be-Halloween costumes, weird vintage, and things that virtually no one knows what they are.  I’d be trying to claw my way out, slip sliding on all that satin and velvet.  So yeah, I gotta get rid of stuff.  However, I am often VERY reluctant to do so.  With certain pieces more than others.  Here’s why.

Do you know how many times I have hit a period in my life where I think to myself: “well, I’m never gonna wear THAT style again!” and then…SURPRISE!  I DO!!   Yep.  Remember that box of vintage slips I got rid of years ago?  I STILL REGRET THAT ONE.  There was this one white and blue pinstripe skirt…an amazing pair of boyfriend shorts, and a baby blue polyester vintage suit that I very much remember and miss.  That being said, I have become slightly better at telling what I really just don’t love and won’t re-wear, or what I can replace with something better and won’t ever miss because of it.  So when I saw this photo, I was like YES I AM VINDICATED!  (I’m shouting at myself, because honestly no one else cares about this around me)

I love this look.  It’s equal parts menswear and rock and roll and that is awesome.  I bought this skirt at Forever 21 probably about seven years ago or so, and every so often, it proves to be amazing.  It has spent some time on my “to get rid of” pile, but then at the last minute, it always gets salvaged.  Because I realize how cool it is and realize that the minute I get rid of it, I will most likely spend my free time looking for something to replace it, only to spend three times as much!  No its not like I’ve EVER done THAT before!!  (Sarcasm.)

I got my white blazer on super sale on Black Friday at H&M (hooray!).  I liked the look of the plain white tee with the text on it, so I wore my Bandit Brand “Rock and Roll” shirt because, well, it’s on the nose, but in this look that totally works!  Also, my skirt is fully lined, which just makes it a bit more wearable in the cooler months (here in California, I realize this would not be wearable in the snow!).  But all in all, I think it’s a look worth copying!  And let’s not forget about those EARRINGS.  Yes, my friend Arwyn works miracles in the leather world and did these up right for me.  Ahhhhh, I love her.

Now if only I could get that white pinstripe blazer back that I got rid of so many years ago…that would have been a cool addition too!

Happy Tuesday!  (that is what day it is right??)
Katy

Advice in Style: Mashups

Anyone else out there used to watch Glee?  Then you know what a great mashup is.  You take two things that are amazing and you put them together.  Two different things that seem like they may have nothing in common, and you combine them…often learning that there is more common ground between the two things than you think.  Style mashups happen ALL the time, but no one ever calls them that!  So I’m just slapping a Glee-friendly label on them and showing you a few.

1970’s meets western:

Preppy meets vintage rocker:

Asian inspired gown meets bicker chick:

Rockabilly chills with rock and roll:

You catch my drift?  So what makes for a great mashup?  In music it’s things like similar chording, a common theme between the lyrics, and the possibility for a compatible tempo.  But what about in style?  How do you make sure that the two worlds will live happily ever after instead of fighting for the center stage?

Here’s some helpful ideas for you.  None of them are RULES…because there’s LOTS of ways to make a great mashup!
1. Pick one dominant theme.  One way to do this is to pick one or two pieces that you want to be the focus.  Then fill in the blanks in between with simple things.  Like, choose crazy 1980’s sneakers and a preppy tweed blazer…and fill in the gaps with a white shirt and jeans.  That way your mashup has some neutral territory.
2. Separate the mashup with some space.  If you’re freaked by this idea, shoes and something on your top half (like a top or a jacket) is the easiest way to give it a go.  That way, there’s a little bit of territory between the two things you’re mixing.
3. Choose styles that “go with everything”.  Obviously, not everything, well, goes with everything, but let me explain.  Cowboy boots tend to be one of those things that are an easy style mix up piece.  They go with fancy edwardian dresses for some epic style confusion.  They work with a rocker tee and goth leather mini skirt.  They are usually a sure fire, go-to, mashup piece when you’re looking to add something.  Converse are also another great piece.  Plaid/tweed blazers, seventies scarves, and 1950’s brooches usually mix in well with other fashion statements too!
4. Just give it a try.  There are many times when you may think to yourself: “this is going to look terrible together!”  But then you try it on all together…and voila!  Magic happens!

I’m all about style mashups.  Partly because I can never make up my mind about what style I’m into at the moment.  Partly because I love to get creative and see what happens when fashions collide.  Partly because…it’s way fun!!!

I got this (most likely a costume) vintage dress at a thrift store and I decided to wear it open like a robe because it has the most amazing drape to it…and the sleeves!! OMG!  I was trying to figure out what to wear it with, and these over the knee western fringe boots just would NOT get out of my mind.  I really just loved the idea of these two major pieces hanging out together.  It just somehow…seems like they belong together!  I also added one of my favorite fringe pieces from my amazing friend Jessica (Hillbillygypsy Boots) to tie in with the fringe on the boots.

Go forth and mash it up!  Have some fun!  This is where you get to break all the rules 🙂
Katy

Real World Style: Fall Couture

I love nothing more than to be flipping through the glossy pages of a magazine and spot an outfit that makes me think: “hey!  I could do that!”  I love when I see a photo that encourages me to put things together in a brand new way.  This is the ultimate way to “shop your closet” or to help you come up with a list of a few pieces to add to your wardrobe for the new season.  When I saw this look in the most recent Vogue, I instantly knew I wanted to give it a shot in the real world.

Dang it.  Now I want a soft pretzel.  Back to the outfit.  I love blazers.  I think they are one of the most key pieces, like a great pair of jeans, that can just completely make an outfit.  They just add something structured to your look and can take anything, even a plain tank top and jeans and sandals and make it look like a legit outfit.  This look, though, made me think about the whole “blazer/skirt” combo.  This is not new, it’s not rocket science, but it just feels very now and fresh to me.  This is what I did with it:

I have a plaid blazer, but because mine is navy and dark green, when I tried to pair it with the red skirt it looked way too Christmas-y.  I liked how the stripes paired with the skirt…kind of had this thing where the lines on the blazer continued on down in the skirt.  It feels so “fall” and so  put together to me.  All I need is that stupid soft pretzel now…

If you don’t have a blazer, definitely add one to your wardrobe.  Here’s a great option for one under $50 at H&M.  I think this look works best with an unstructured skirt better than a pencil skirt for example, because the blazer/pencil skirt pairing is definitely an “I just came from the office” look whereas this is a more creative use of this typical workwear piece.  I would do it with a flowy maxi, a pleated midi, or even a destroyed denim piece to be creative with it!  I love the juxtaposition of the tweed-y blazer with a romantic or rock and roll skirt!

Hope you’re having a great day (and eating a soft pretzel)!
Katy

Switch It Up: Velvet

This fall 2016 trend was made for me.  I mean, let’s get real.  When velvet is not a trend, I will still be happily wearing it in every piece of clothing possible.  I love velvet.  I want everything in my house to be velvet.  It’s my favorite fabric!  So when I started seeing this luxurious fabric pop up everywhere in magazines and on the runway, I let out a resounding cheer and began buying even more of it.  Naturally.

Now not everyone feels this way about it, I understand.  While I love velvet pants and wear them like most people would wear jeans…like a basic…this is not something that everyone would do.  Why not explore some options on how to wear this (amazing) trend, in ways that are economical and approachable?  I have a few options for you in this department!  And none of them are pants, because y’all already know how I feel about them velvet bells. 😉

Committed Relationship

This look is basically a runway hack for the velvet trend.  While you could spend a lot on a velvet dress (which is perfectly acceptable), you could also go to the pajama section of the thrift store (my all time favorite section after the costume section) and keep your eyes out for a nightgown/robe like this one!  The velvet dress is not for the faint of heart, but it is very fall and winter appropriate and very chic.  Keep accessories simple, as this is a statement piece all on it’s own, and boots really make the look wearable.  This dress is a gorgeous option for fall if you’re looking for a very wearable piece!

Just a Tad

If you’re feeling like wearing velvet may be too much for you but you really like this trend and want to mix it in, try a pair of velvet booties!  This makes the trend a little more of an accessory and you can easily wear them with a tee and jeans like I did here.  This pair is very unassuming and not as loud as mine are!

With Some Velvet On Top

Adding a velvet blazer to your look is a great halfway point between completely committed and wearing it as an accessory…and it’s so rock and roll!  Throw one on over a graphic or a band tee with some jeans and you’re an instant cool girl.  You can also put one over a button down with a pencil skirt if you’d like to keep your look more structured and office appropriate!  Either way, it kind of adds that little je ne sais quoi to your look that takes it to the next level.  This blazer is on sale for an insane price and…I want it!!!

No matter how you wear it, it’s a fun trend to try and I hope you’re giving it a test run!
Katy

Real World Style: Magazine Fall Style

I love pouring through those amazing haute couture spreads in the latest (or even old editions really) issues of Vogue, Elle, Marie Claire…basically you name a magazine, I love it.  One of the things that’s always a struggle though, is to make the looks they put together actually wearable in real life.  I mean, a lot of haute couture is more art that inspires fashion than pieces that are really supposed to be worn to the grocery store or to a holiday party.  Let’s get real.  Some of those girls on the runways or in the photo shoots…aren’t wearing any underwear.  Sorry guys, I love fashion a lot, but I’m not showing my nipples while buying diapers at Target.  At least intentionally.

Challenging as it can be, sometimes there are looks that are more easily reproducible in those glossy pages than the ones that consist primarily of mesh and body paint!  These are the most fun looks because they are great outfit inspiration when I’m feeling like I don’t know what I want to wear!  One tip I’ve learned…vintage is often a GREAT substitute for haute couture pieces.  Often times vintage is what inspired those pieces we all see and love, and it’s at a fraction of the price and more accessible to those of us who don’t live near a Versace or Gucci store!

I love this look.  The fall feelings…the mixture of the menswear blazer, the feminine pleats, and the gritty rainboots all creates a beautiful piece of art.  This is one of those looks that, may be fantastically pricey and couture, is easily replicated out of normal clothing that is either already in your closet, or is somewhere around you at a normal store!

Everything on me is vintage, except for those Hunter boots.  And you know what, everyone needs a pair of Hunters!  It barely rains here, but when it does, I bust out these amazing things happily!  Micro pleats are a huge trend for fall 2016, and micro pleats are SO VINTAGE!  Here’s a basic option from H&M for a micro pleated skirt dress.  My jacket is an amazing Goodwill find (I watched another girl try it on and waited for her to put it back before snatching it up!) but here’s an incredible velvet blazer that would be SO good with that H&M micro pleat dress!

And there you have it, proof you can dress haute couture without spending the big bucks (unless you wanna, and there is NO judgement from me on that!).
Katy

On Being An Individual and Not Having a Vintage-Sized Waist.

I was feeling kind of bad about myself the other day.  I mean, this is not an unusual thing for me, and I think for most women, it’s a fairly common occurrence right?  You all know I love vintage clothing.  But (spoiler alert coming up) I HARDLY EVER FIT INTO THEM.  Thankfully, I have a mom who used to be a professional seamstress, and so my big secret is that she actually works miracles on all the weird stuff I bring to her and adds sometimes even multiple sizes to outfits so that they fit.  I know that vintage runs small.  And I know that clothing alterations are necessary for pretty much everyone, because no one is a “one size fits all” body type.  But that doesn’t stop me from feeling badly about it at times.

I grew up with a mom who had constant weight woes.  Throughout my entire childhood, I heard her talk about how she couldn’t lose weight and how she felt badly about her body.  Even though I didn’t ever struggle with weight and my body type was COMPLETELY different from hers (I was taller than her by the time I was 7!), somehow her fears about weight transferred onto me.

My feeling badly about my non-vintage sized waistline started when I made the mistake of actually measuring my waist (don’t do that by the way…it’s not nice!) and seeing the real number on the measuring tape, and not the number I just guessed off the top of my head.  You know like your magical driver’s license weight where no one is checking on it to make sure you’re not lying…so you kind of just “guess” which basically means, take your goal weight, shave ten pounds off of it because you could totally get there right??  Back to my waistline measurement.  No, I’m not confused and accidentally looking at the number in centimeters…although I wish that were the case.  Maybe there’s a math formula where you divide the number in half and that’s my ACTUAL waistline number???  All I know is that the number was discouraging for me…especially after working out like a beast and actually seeing changes in my body recently.

After getting all bummed out like I did, I then had another thought.  I thought to myself…”wait…who dictates what number size my waist should be?  If I have a healthy lifestyle and I’m doing the best and most that I can, why should I feel badly??”  I kind of had a moment of like #girlpower or something, because I suddenly felt all fired up about this whole concept of “who says I have to be _____??”  I mean, why do we always feel like we need to conform to a certain size, shape, style, or even personality?  We are individuals.  And NOTHING is more beautiful than confidence and individuality.  Forget the tape measure.  It’s going away.  If it fits, it fits.  If it doesn’t, I’ll have my mom add some fabric, make it even more funky and unique, and STOP feeling badly about it.  No matter how hard I workout, my waistline is never going to be 26″, and it’s a good thing, because that would probably look super weird on me.

And here’s why I chose this outfit to go with this topic.  Sometimes I get a little self conscious of how my thighs look in jeans, so I often wear something long enough to cover them.  When I took these pictures, I almost put a long tank top under this amazing Midnight Rider tee, but I felt like that would have lost some of the impact of the outfit.  And you know what?  I’m just gonna go ahead and not apologize for my thighs and be happy with them!!

The bells are Show Me Your Mumu and this incredible bolo is from my awesome friend Hillbilly Gypsy Boots (it was a custom order, which she’s fabulous at).  Indian chief ring is from my favorite Ruby Rose.  I have good friends who love me in spite of the fact that I only know Bob Dylan as Jakob Dylan’s dad and that I had no idea that “The Band” was an actual BAND.  It’s nice to have friends who love you for who you are, despite your ignorance about the 1970’s!

Happy midweek to all of you amazing and individually beautiful girls!
Katy