Fashion Feelings: Tiny Annoying Setbacks

Seriously you guys, my life is like one perpetual diet.  And I’m not referring to the fact that I eat healthy.  No, no, that is something I do because I like to do it.  I eat salads instead of fries and acai bowls instead of ice cream because I actually feel better when I do.  What I’m referring to is the calorie counting and the not splurging on even healthy treats.  That’s what I’m talking about.  Yes, it’s called #momlife and the fact that I just don’t get to get as much sleep as I’d like, I tend to run out of energy from changing multiple diapers, cleaning up toys, and loading and unloading kids into car seats…and for all of these things, my body wants MORE FOOD.  So you want to know what happens?  I get into a routine.  I have a great week where I’ve worked out every day, my calories have been #onpoint, and I’m just #killingit.  (sorry for all the hashtags, it’s hard to stop once you start). And then…one of the kids gives me a mild tummy bug, a cold, or wakes up in the middle of the night and BOOM.  Routine destroyed.  #fail.  (#sorrynotsorry omg how do I turn it off??)

It drives me crazy.  I get frustrated because my typical iron clad low carb routine dissolves into me having to eat toast because my stomach is messed up, not working out because I have middle-of-the-night-toddler-freak-out exhaustion, or just overall eating more than I should because I don’t have the time to pay attention to my calorie count.  Or I’m just tired and hungry.  So I eat a little extra. Sure, sure, I need to give myself grace.  I know, I’m crazy hard on myself often when it comes to this stuff, so let’s try to focus on the point I’m making and not that I’m just plain crazy.  Crazy hard on myself or crazy…it’s all about the same thing!

My kids are young.  And it’s so fun to have young kids.  They’re so freaking cute.  But this often causes small “setbacks” in my routine.  It forces me to be okay with some weeks being “bad diet” weeks.  Even though I try my darnedest…sometimes I just need an acai bowl on a day I didn’t work out.  (I know you’re like “Oh my GOSH Katy you’re SO CRAZY!” #sarcasm)  But this is kind of the truth about being a mom at times.  You have to let go of the things you once held dear.  Your precious schedule.

Even though it is hard, and my feelings of frustration are valid, I think it’s kind of good for me at times to just do my best to be okay with who I am right now.  Yes, I will keep working on that dang last ten pounds until I can kick them (and I WILL kick them), but it’s good for me to learn to accept who I am at the moment.  I’m a mom.  I have more of a “mom body” than I used to, and some of that will always remain, weight lost or not.  I have stretch marks.  And sometimes, I won’t be able to stick to my routine.  That needs to be okay with me, because life is about more than just being hyper disciplined, as good as discipline is.

I’m thankful for clothes like this, because you know what?  They always look good.  I don’t have to be having a “thin day” to wear them and feel great about myself.  This cocoon wrap is from Aavintedge, and her mom (@modmelrose) is just about the coolest seamstress EVER.  My gosh, I want so much more of her stuff.  Scratch that.  I basically want everything she makes.  She uses vintage fabrics and makes the best stuff out of them.  And then there’s stretch velvet bell bottoms.  Go get yourself a custom pair, why don’t ya?  Because everyone needs more velvet in their lives ;)

Eat a donut for me will ya?
Katy

Advice in Style: The Lazy Girl’s Guide To Style

You know what’s funny?  Watching movies set in past times when women wore things like corsets and stuff…and then watching myself complain about having to button my jeans.  Yeah.  Times have changed.  I mean, we have it so easy!  We don’t have to deal with giant petticoats (unless we want to) or constrictive shape wear (unless you count spanx, which are again, optional)…the worst thing we have to do is literally, button our skinny jeans.  Pretty sure we have it darn easy, ladies!

All that to be said, we don’t have to make things more complicated if we don’t want to.  If you’re one of those “I want to feel like I’m wearing pajamas all day, every day” kinda gals, this is your lucky day.  Because corsets are for costumes, buttons are for elevators, spanx are for Kanye’s fashion show.   Yeah, I went there.

Lazy gals, your day has arrived.  We live in the era of stretch fabrics, velcro, and leggings in every imaginable pattern.  You are now the cool girls.  Your workouts can now be reserved for the gym and not for trying to get on a stubborn pair of slightly too small “standing only” jeans.

The I Don’t Want To Button My Pants Lazy Girl’s Guide To Style:

Ditch the jeans like it’s Turkey Day.  I love denim, but you can be stylish without a pair of jeans.  The sheer amount of palazzo pants, maxi skirts, leggings, and stretchy bell bottoms out there right now is staggering.  I have so many pairs of jeans, and I often go weeks without touching them just because I have so many other options.
Keep the jeans, lose the pesky button.  I am having an endless love affair with high waisted stretch jeans.  So much so, that I’m considering doing my own for my upcoming clothing line.  I have a pair of these, and you guys, they’re worth every penny.
Wear pajamas.  All day.  You all know how I feel about pajama dressing, it’s chic, different, and COMFORTABLE.  No one (unless they’re super weird) makes uncomfortable pajamas.  You can easily buy pajama tops and bottoms even at places like Target or Old Navy and wear them as shirts and or bottoms.  It looks very classy when paired with the right top or bottom, depending on what look you are going for.
Layer like a pro.  I love that the style these days is more “messy” than “fussy”.  It’s like, instead of polo shirts with the collar flipped up (please tell me what that’s about you guys) there’s tees with jackets and flowy pants.  Messy is the “look”, meaning that it’s all about doing things imperfectly and not nitpicking at your outfit.  (key word, lazy)
No more laces.  Don’t tell your mom, but all that time she spent teaching you to tie your own shoes was, well, a waste.  Because pull on, slip on, slide on shoes are your new BFF.  I cannot tell you how many times I chose a pair of pull-on boots over a pair that I have to zip up (heaven forbid I put that much effort into getting dressed) simply because it was easy.  Mules, slides, and cowboy boots are like “look ma! No hands!” kinda shoes.
Buy yourself a good dry shampoo.  If you don’t already have dry shampoo, goodness gracious get your butt into your car and get some.  Or at the very least, be lazy and order some.  No, NOW.  I didn’t mean later, I meant now!  Because dry shampoo is the lazy girl’s best hair friend, and saves time, and probably lives as well for all I know.  If you have dark hair, this one is the bomb and smells amazing too.  If you have blonde hair, opt for a lighter option.  Both of these are safe, natural products that you will most definitely get your money’s worth.  An added perk of using the natural ones is that they don’t build up like the chemical ones do.  These you can use a few days in a row without getting that nasty yucky hair feeling after only one day of use.

Here’s my lazy girl look.  I have a robe I got from Urban Outfitters, my pull on flares from Show Me Your Mumu (no cussing, struggling, or sucking in the gut required), and a thrifted slip dress.  My hair is fully equipped with dry shampoo and a little salt spray and my lipstick is a crayon (one swipe and done).  I have on some slide on mules so I can literally just step into them and go.

Go be lazy you guys.  It’s ok, I won’t tell :)
Katy

On Competition and Lace

Competition.  It’s one of those things that everyone deals with, no matter who you are or what age you are.  I mean, sometimes it’s friendly competition in a game or a contest, sometimes it’s a workplace thing where there’s money, status, or a promotion involved, and sometimes it’s just downright nasty.  I know guys deal with competition as well as women, but for some reason it just seems like in women it’s just worse.  Maybe it’s because guys overtly compete with each other often and it’s all out in the open…whereas when women compete, well, you know what happens.  There’s so much subtext, so much NOT being said, so much that  would go unnoticed to the undiscerning eye…it tends to be hidden.  I think anyone who’s been around other women at any point in their lives (or maybe has just watched a few episodes of The Bachelor for that matter!) has experienced this.

In high school, there weren’t that many of us really since it was such a small school.  And fortunately we were all so vastly different that we didn’t have a ton of competition amongst us.  There were some girls who I could see that dynamic going on with, but it thankfully didn’t leak onto me.  And my best friend and I were the good kind of girl friends, the kind who supported each other and didn’t have this horrid love/hate relationship that some girls have going on.  But when I became the youngest girl singing on the band at church, things were a bit different.  Now I’d like to point out that for the most part, everyone INCLUDING the women were really sweet and supportive.  But there were those few who just really couldn’t behave that way.  There were the women who were insecure about themselves and had a hard time with me coming in and “threatening their position” as women so often feel about other women.  So when I eventually became the leader, I decided that I didn’t want this kind of competition to exist on the band because of how it felt to be the recipient of it.

I remember asking a new girl to sing on the band along side myself and another singer.  She was very excited to join us and complete our team.  On her first night at practice, she sang great and the other girl singing with her was so encouraging to her.  I could tell she was going to be just fine, however I could tell by her demeanor that she was emotionally struggling.  I could see it on her face that no matter what anyone said to her, she didn’t feel good enough to be there.  The competition she was feeling was internal…it wasn’t coming from anyone else around her.  So after practice, everyone left but her and the other singer and I asked her gently “how did it go for you?”  She crumbled…tears streaming down her face she sobbed out how she didn’t feel like she was a good enough singer to sing with me and the other girl, how she felt inadequate, and how she didn’t think she belonged.  We hugged her, reassured her a bunch that we wanted her there, that there was nothing about her that was inferior to either of us, and that there most definitely was a place for her with us.  By the time she left, her whole face changed.  She was smiling, excited, and acting appropriately according to the way the night had gone.

Isn’t it funny how sometimes no one around us is competing with us, and yet we are still competing with everyone around us?  I honestly feel like at this point in my life, I am my biggest competition.  I am constantly comparing myself to who I USED to be…like the jeans I still can’t quite wear yet…I am constantly trying to be better than I used to be and better than I am.  So many times I find myself feeling badly about myself, crumbling much like I watched that girl do so long ago, even though there’s no real reason to feel that way.  It comes with being a typical type A personality, being a woman, and just being the kind of person who often equates things like weight gain due to pregnancy with failure.  I’m always competing with me.

I think what I love about this outfit is that it’s not trying to be anything other than it is.  I love this vintage slip because it looks a lot like what For Love and Lemons is most likely inspired by, and it has slits in the sides so it makes it perfect for wearing over jeans without being too billowy.  The bells are from Show Me Your Mumu of course and the necklace is from Zachary Pryor on Etsy.

I keep reminding myself that instead of trying to mimic who I was before…I need to be who I am now.  I need to understand that it’s not failure to be different than I was before a lot of things changed in my life…it’s not failure, but a new opportunity to rediscover things about myself.  So I love to put together outfits like this that are unique in themselves and feel fresh and like the me that is now. I mean, if I compete with myself, who wins??  Yeah that’s a brain teaser isn’t it?

Happy weekend all!
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

On Plaid Blazers and Not Really Looking Like The Others

I got to spend the day in Santa Barbara today, which is about two hours or a bit shy of that south of where I live.  It’s always SUCH a treat because usually my husband and I come down and my mom watches the kids at home so he can work at a coffee shop and I…shop.  Are you surprised?  Hahaha… I come down frequently enough that there are stores where people actually recognize me.  That’s kind of fun because it feels a little like a vacation spot and yet a little like home still.  Oh today was a good one you guys.  I found the new Off Fifth (shopping heaven) and got some new goodies that are kind of out of character for me, which is kind of fun and different.  I had a specific style vision and I did SO good you all would be proud of me!!

I went into a really fun second hand/consignment shop and was waiting in line, when I overheard this woman saying something to the effect of: “her pants” as she motioned at me.  This is not surprising.  I am the reigning “pants queen” so people talking about my pants is pretty normal.  She asked what they were and they were of course my new Show Me Your Mumu denim bells which I am constantly wearing these days, and she immediately grabbed a pen and some paper as I rattled off brands she’d like and what I was wearing.  It’s always so much fun when this happens.  I feel like I’m secretly getting to style someone as well as share insider secrets about fun new fashion that I know they’re gonna go nuts for.  So after all this she asked me where I lived, and she kind of paused and looked at me funny.  “You don’t look like the typical San Luis person to me”, she said.  Hilarious.

This is funny to me for a few reasons.  One, I was born and raised in San Luis, with little to no experience with outside areas.  I mean, I got culture shock when I would go 45 minutes south.  I was very much born and RAISED in San Luis.  Two, this is funny because as an outside observer, she really nailed it.  I have never ever felt like a San Luis person.  There are a LOT of reasons for that, but part of that is the fact that I always feel like I’m so fascinated with styles from all over the world that (thanks to the internet and the magic of Instagram) I am always trying to find items from places like Australia, Turkey, France…you name it…I’m in love with different places and the fashion that expresses them.  It’s weird how I can feel like I belong somewhere but yet not feel like I am like the others who live there.

So here it goes.  My weird, funky, non San Luis styling for a plaid blazer.  Because I don’t see anyone dressed like this anywhere around me.  Here’s me, a SLO native, NOT looking like one! :)

 

I love this blazer with a graphic tee and the infamous Berkeley Bells.  It’s so funky and easy.  And it of course needs my favorite Free To Wander squash blossom to add the necessary styling element turquoise.

I thought I’d maybe do something fun and a little more dressy with this jacket…like add vintage fur!  I was getting major Penny Lane in plaid vibes when I put this together!  I love these pleather leggings (when it’s actually COLD outside!!) because they’re so much classier than plain black leggings.  Booties kind of balance out the shiny leather and keep it from going too “evening wear” and work well with the colors in the jacket.

Hey.  It’s okay to not look like everyone else.  That’s a hard one to learn and I definitely learned that personally trying hard TO look like everyone else.  I spent a few years desperately trying to convince everyone around me (and mostly myself) that I WAS a San Luis person.  It was super painful for me to not feel like I was the same as everyone around me because I thought that it meant I didn’t belong in my hometown.  But the truth is, I am different and my town needs me because I am different.  Every place needs LOTS of different people with different styles, passions, and gifts.  Otherwise it would be quite a boring place right??

Happy Wednesday

Katy

 

A Scarf As A Top? Heck Yeah!

You know what I think is kind of funny?  Thinking back to what I used to think was pretty.  Like clothes I wanted to wear and styles I thought were amazing.  I remember for like five minutes wearing those mesh slip on flats (I think they were probably technically slippers in whatever culture they originated from) that had like shiny flowers on the toes.  Tons of tiny butterfly clips in my hair…remember that lovely trend??  Or how about Juicy Couture head to toe monochromatic velour sweatsuits.  Ohhhhh yeahhhhh I loved that one for a while.  For a while it was all leggings and skinny jeans and now it’s all wide leg pants and bell bottoms.  Isn’t it weird how one year your perception of something can be one way, then literally just a year later, you see the exact same outfit or style COMPLETELY differently??

Nothing about the actual styles changed.  It’s just our perception of them that changed.  Sometimes that happens to me with clothing items in my closet.  Like for example this scarf that I’ve had for years.  I love it.  But as a scarf, I just don’t love wearing it.  I’ve worn it before, but it just didn’t really work super well.  So one day, I decided if it was a shirt, I’d love it.

As a shirt, I absolutely love this scarf.  I tied it into a halter top because it’s a rather large scarf, and I love the print too much to use it as an accent piece.  If I wear it with high waisted bell bottoms, it feels very vintage and 1970’s to me.  It’s all about perception.  As a scarf, I’m just probably not gonna wear it.  But as a top, It’s one of my favorite hot weather tops!  The bells are my new favorites from Show Me Your Mumu and the earrings are from Southbound.

I betcha there are some things in your closet that you could repurpose or just wear differently and change your perception of them!  Like a skirt as a dress, a scarf as a halter top or a head wrap, an earring even as a new necklace pendant.  Sometimes we all just need to see things a little differently to discover a whole new world right underneath our noses! :)

Katy

The Bell Bottoms You Absolutely Need. Like Right Now.

So by now you probably know how much I love bell bottoms right?  I’m thinking I just heard you say YES, so I’ll move on.  If not, please refer to my earlier posts on things I am obsessed with.  Among those things are jumpsuits, fluffy skirts, turquoise, vintage, bell bottoms, paisley, orange, and, well…the list is basically so long we could sit here for days.  Anyway, Ima talk about bell bottoms, k?  (is it Kanye’s fault that I say the word “Ima”??? I honestly don’t know.  But it sounds right, so Ima blame him.)

Okay so these bells are not necessarily a bargain when it comes to jeans, per say.  They’re definitely on the lower end in terms of price when it comes to nice jeans…but they’re still an investment.  However, if you’re going to invest any money into jeans this season and you want bells, I implore you to make these them.  Let me explain.

First of all, they are elastic waistband, pull on, super flare jeans.  Yep, you read that right.  Okay, let me be honest.  If I was reading this right after having my daughter (second pregnancy in a row), I would have rolled my eyes at this description and said: “so basically, they’re maternity jeans?”  Um, past me: get off your freaking high horse and get a GRIP!  So yes, they are stretchy.  Yes, they are pull on.  Do you know what this means?  They are basically the most comfortable jeans KNOWN TO MAN.  I’m not kidding.  Also, Show Me Your Mumu knows butts ladies.  They are my go-to for flowy pants because they ALWAYS are butt flattering!!  Oh and P.S. these pants are semi high wasted so they really suck you in.  It’s glorious.  These jeans are the Berkeley Bells…they come in different colors, and I am in love.

Now just a warning on these pants.  They are LOOOOOOONG.  Tall people of the world, rejoice!  They are made for you!  If you are shorter or have shorter legs, then you might not want them because you will have to cut so much off of them that the bell will be way less prominent.

They say “mu” on the butt.  Which just plain makes me happy.

Have a FAN-FREAKING-TASTIC week!
Katy