Fashion Feelings: Quitting and Unquitting

At this point, you probably know that I recently started a clothing line from scratch.  (I’m starting a new blog series on this process in fact!)  And whenever I tell people this, they always exclaim about how fun that it must be to do so.  And it is!!  There are so many rewarding moments.  The dreaming up clothing items and then getting to wear them and seeing them on other people…yes, that part is so crazy fun.  The problem is, that the parts in between those fun parts are tedious.  They get discouraging.  And basically, I “quit” once a day, on the regular.

I’m not a quitter.  I don’t quit things unless I really really feel like I need to.  But that doesn’t mean that I don’t “quit” emotionally and mentally sometimes on a task.  You know…the “gah! I give up!” moments where you just kind of have to take a break and give yourself a chance (and maybe a pep talk or two) to breathe, rest, and realize that the process isn’t alway fun, but the reward is worth it.  Yes, everyday around 3 p.m. (right about now actually, which is why I’m having an iced coffee and writing this post) I get discouraged and “quit”.  I get stressed about the business-y details.  I worry about everything from A to Z and that makes me wonder whether I should even be doing this at all!  And then, I think of all of you.

You know what’s amazing about being “known” and having a lot of people around you who both support you and are aware of what you’re doing?  It makes it A LOT harder to quit for reals.  If you are isolated, quitting your healthy eating plan, your new plan to save more money, or your resolutions to _______ (fill in that blank with whatever you want) is easy as pie.  Like, go ahead and eat that whole dang pie, no one’s watching.  However, tell everyone you are going to workout regularly, start a business, or take a few classes online and suddenly…it ain’t so easy to do.  That’s a darn good thing too.  I’m not kidding you.  Sometimes when I get discouraged, one of your lovely faces from my Instagram feed pops into my head and I remember something you said about one of the pieces I created.  Or about my creativity.  Or just the fact that you said you were behind me in this.  Yeah…that’s when I “un-quit” and get off my butt.  Support is everything.

This slip is one of my hand dyed and patched Velvet California pieces and it’s only fitting that I pair it with this uber soft sweater from Amber Moon, on online clothing shop.  I had the privilege of meeting Stacy, the owner of the shop, and gosh she is a sweetheart.  I love LOVE meeting other women who are determined to make their mark by starting things and by encouraging other women who are doing the same.  She has great taste and decided that she wants to carry a few select pieces in her online shop.  So encouraging, you guys.

Nothing like having people stand beside you and help you out through the rough patches, even if they don’t even know they’re doing it!

It may be 3 pm, but it ain’t quitting time.
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

Real World Style: Goth Feels

I’ve never been much down for the whole “goth thing”.  However, I have friends and relatives who fully embraced the trend a long time ago…the whole dark and moody thing just never really worked for me.  I mean, I didn’t even start wearing black until about five years ago!  I am the least dark and twisty person you could find…and a lot of time my style reflects that.  That’s not to say that I don’t appreciate the style in certain ways though!

Goth seems like it was a total late 80s and early 90s style kind of sub sect, especially amongst angsty teens.  I remember one of my good friends talking endlessly about Marilyn Manson (although we were a bit on the young side to really be listening to him) and wearing almost black lipstick.  She definitely embraced the moodier side of fashion while I was still wearing pink and listening to uber pop music in all it’s happy glory.

Isn’t it funny how the style cycle is moving quicker these days it seems?  I think because of social media and iPhones and all that jazz, photos get disseminated much quicker and almost immediately after a trend begins, we are oversaturated with it.  Fast fashion pumps out a style quicker than you can blink, and before you know it, you have an email in your inbox from Forever 21 with a complete collection of clothing based on that trend.  The fast fashion fairy godmothers plus the magic of Instagram equals a trend reaching the masses and then being “so over” much MUCH quicker than in any other time in history.  So we are now seeing trends cycle through, like some of the 90s punk goth stuff we are starting to see, when it wasn’t all that long ago we just saw black velvet chokers and dark lips walk down the runway THE LAST TIME they did.

The great thing however about all this lightning speed communication of trends is that there is so much more creativity happening amongst them!  The “goth” we are seeing now is definitely a throw back to the early 90s, but this time, it’s gotten a little fancier.  And this time, I’m gonna test it out because I’m a little bolder in my style choices than I was when I was a kid.  Clearly.

I found this photo in Marie Claire that I liked because it’s kind of an edwardian romantic take on goth.

I love the idea of mixing white and black lace together.  It takes the sweetness and delicacy of the lace and adds an edge.  I love testing out a trend or a style that doesn’t necessarily feel like “me”, because it often gives me new ideas and new courage to think (and dress) outside my usual box!

This look is like the fancier older sister of the moody goth younger brother.  Know what I’m saying?  I have a vintage Gunne Sax lace dress over a vintage black slip dress and some ruffly combat boots…because the ruffle is just plain fun.  I feel both moody and fancy at the same time.  I weirdly used to wear dark lipstick ALL THE TIME, but now it feels fun and yet strange.  It’s not my usual go-to style, but I’m gonna try and sneak some pieces of it into my weekly wardrobe!  Still listening to pop music though.  That’s not gonna change :)
Happy Monday!
Katy

 

 

Cool Copying: Leopard. Again.

Do you ever see an outfit and just kind of get obsessed with it?  Like, you see a picture of an ensemble, and it’s all you can think about.  You look at it and can almost feel how amazing it would feel on your body.  What?  No that never happens to me!  JUST KIDDING!  (Insert string of laughing till their crying emojis here).

This happens to me…more than I care to admit.  Sometimes we will be out shopping and my son will see a toy, and literally talk about it for days, and almost nothing else.  While it’s easy to find this annoying and all as a parent, I completely understand how he feels!  It’s like this part of your brain that sees something, and triggers this reaction where you think: “if I just got that one THING my life would be complete…”  (Again, insert hilarious laughter emojis because we know how untrue this feeling is!)  So yeah, I get how he feels.  I’m an adult, (I think?) so I know logically now that stuff obviously doesn’t make me happy per say, and that there will always be another “thing/outfit” that makes me feel this same level of obsession.  All that to say, instead of obsessing like crazy and then spending obscene amounts of money just to have something I need, I’ve started a list.

Now, when I see something that triggers that “I need” part of my brain, I’ve started a little list of things that I’m watching out for.  Then, what happens is after a few days of looking, I either sort of forget or change my mind about whatever it is I’m hunting for, I decide to invest a decent amount of money on it because I’ve realized it will be worth it, OR I decide to hold out till I find it for a steal.  This has become a good system for me because it helps out my tendencies towards an obsessive brain!

I was reading through my daily news (all style related of course!) and I came across this outfit on Who What Wear.

Let’s be honest.  There’s Gucci in it, which of course makes me want it.  But the principle of the outfit is simple.  Slip dress, graphic tee, slides.  I have done stuff like this before, but something about this combo is like just enough vintage, just enough Los Angeles cool, and just enough easy to make me need it.  So, I started shopping for a leopard slip dress.  If you look at the actual links to this outfit, you will see that it costs quite a pretty penny.  I’m not opposed to that.  However, besides the Gucci, nothing in this outfit is…not repeatable.  I found a slip on Poshmark for $4 you guys.  So…just saying, sometimes feeding your item/outfit obsession isn’t that bad!

See what I did there?  I took a vintage graphic tee, a second hand leopard slip (these are rather plentiful you guys), and a pair of slides (not Gucci, but I WILL GET THERE!), and done.  I done copied this outfit, y’all.  I could have spent $200 on a leopard slip dress.  That would have been fine.  But the difference is, the dress I got for $4 is basically the same thing as this one.  This is different than, obsessing over a Gucci bag.  (which I am, can you tell?)  There may be no substitute for that one item, so you gotta shell out the big bucks.  But it pays to know the difference right?

Go forth, and copy.  It is, after all, the highest form of flattery!
Katy

Switch It Up: Slip Dresses

Dontcha just love it when something you’ve been collecting and loving for so many years is finally in style?  You know, when everyone suddenly thinks you’re copying the latest trends…and you’re screaming NO I WAS DOING THIS LIKE THREE YEARS AGO!  And no one really cares?  Man I need more coffee today…I feel as though the cranky part of me is eating the peaceful calm side of me.  Like I have a peaceful calm side.  (*hysterical laughter from my husband)  I’ve talked about my love for slip dresses before, but let me just reminisce for a moment about the GIANT BOX OF VINTAGE SLIPS that I got rid of when I finally gave up hope that I’d ever wear them again.  I know, sometimes I am so far away from being smart it scares me.  But now, I’m collecting them once again, making up for my momentary lapse in judgement.  We can call like three years “momentary” right? Okay, thanks.

Let’s talk slips.  Everyone’s doing it.  And if everyone jumped off a cliff we probably would too, right?  (occasionally the “mom” in me rears its ugly head, sorry kids)  It’s cool and it’s fun and thanks to Courtney Love in the 90’s, it’s retro chic.  The great news about slipping into a slip dress, is that they are plentiful, can be relatively inexpensive, and are quite varied in specific style amongst themselves.  Theres the lacy ones with lots of darts that are more fitted.  There are the simple satin ones that are more likely from the 80’s or 90’s that are less fancy.  And hey, you can even find new reproductions if vintage or thrifting isn’t your thing!

Business Pajama Casual
I love the combination of a slip dress and a striped, gingham, or plaid button down.  It’s the secret 90’s fashion lover in me I guess.

This look is super simple, kind of looks like you’re wearing your boyfriend’s shirt…it has that sexy “I just rolled out of bed” look to it.  It’s an easy one to reproduce!  Vintage slip plus over sized button down, and good to go!  I added the fringe Converse because it kind of adds to the tomboyish look with a fun flair.

Retro Fabulous
I love a ringer tee.  When you layer a slip over a tee, it almost has a vest-like effect.  It’s interesting and different.  Adding the destroyed boyfriend jeans definitely gives this a bit of a 70’s meets 90’s vibe.

Easy to create…any tee, doesn’t even have to be a ringer…it can be a v-neck or a plain tee too, and some baggy jeans and you’re good to go.

Tuck It In
The magic of a slip dress, or any simple sheath dress, is that you can double it as a top when you tuck it into a maxi skirt!

Belt it or not, use a midi or a maxi, there are plenty of options to this look!  Remember too, if you tuck a slip dress into a skirt that’s rather, er, see through, you can use the bottom of the dress as an ACTUAL slip!

If you aren’t comfortable with thrifting one or you aren’t into the vintage ones, check out these for a cotton minimalist approach (v-neck version here) and for a more vintage inspired look check out these.

Go forth, and slip into something more slip dress like!
Katy

Real World Style: Military Shirts

Isn’t it funny how while some things in fashion come and go, certain things never seem to really ever go out of style?  I mean, I’m pretty sure that leopard print, while it is inordinately hot at the moment, never really goes “out” of style.  And how about florals and plaids?  There’s another example.  Those prints may have their big moments on the runway or in magazines, but they never really go away.  Military tops and jackets are some of those items that I find seem to always, ALWAYS, be around.  I think the way people wear them varies from season to season, but let’s be quite honest…I don’t think I’ve ever seen a fashion report that said they were a no-no.  Not that I ever really listen to those reports anyway…because if I love it, it’s “in style” in my closet and in my life!  End of story!

I always feel a little, how do I say this…poser-y wearing military stuff because, I am a wuss.  I complain when I get like, less than nine hours of sleep and when my coffee is not the exact brand I love, so being a part of something as intense as the military is just not the right fit for me.  Clearly.  So my rules for military inspired wear for myself is that it must look “fake” enough so that no one thanks me for my service or thinks I just went on a shopping spree at the army surplus store.  The other trick to pulling off this trend is also to mix it with other styles.  When you put an army jacket with, say, a floral maxi dress or boyfriend jeans and a graphic tee, no one will think you just got off active duty.  Although, once I did get asked if I was a den mother…but being asked if I’m part of the Girl Scouts, while still quite laughable given my feelings about nature, is a different story altogether!

The bottom line is this: military tops and jackets can add a lot of structure and interest to a normal outfit!  They give girly dresses an edge, and frame a tee shirt and jeans quite nicely.  Just remember, if someone salutes you as you walk by, you may need to rethink your combo.

This top is vintage, and when I found it on Poshmark, I knew I had to have it.  It looks to me like a military commander’s shirt (if you’re gonna wear military, may as well wear something that says you’re in charge right?) and I couldn’t pass it up.  And of course, I had to send it to my friend Arwyn (@township31) who at some point, will probably have fringed, embroidered, and painted on my entire closet.  Let’s just get real here.  She added the gold dipped (her genius idea) leather fringe on the front, thereby taking it from strict military into the blurry realm of…cowboy military?  Not sure there’s a category for that, but I’ll just go ahead and start one.  I will definitely wear this as a regular button down with my jeans, but for starters I wanted to play with it a little more.  I threw it over a green slip dress to kind of pay homage to the army green part of the military trend and then put the short combat boots with it to tie it all together.  It’s a little 90’s, a little 80’s, and a little crazy…just how I like it.

If you love military style, I salute you.  And if you’re part of the ACTUAL military, I really really salute you.  Because the store has been out of my favorite coffee for a month now and I am NOT a happy camper.

Happy Monday!
Katy

 

On Not Being Risk Taker…Except In Fashion!

I was watching Modern Family this week (if you don’t watch it, you must because it’s hilarious!) and one of the plot lines was about parents being overly cautious with their little girl learning to ride a bike.  It was really funny of course, and as a parent now, I completely understand this sentiment.  However, it made me remember myself as a child, and how overly cautious I was…and how it really didn’t serve me well.

I was that kid who basically was afraid of most everything.  Germs, sports, the dark, and giant structures of dinosaur bones (my parents took me to a lot of museums, so that should make more sense to you knowing that).  I was bad at sports because I was scared to take risks, and if you don’t have confidence, you tend to fall a lot.  So I never roller skated down hills.  I never learned to skateboard or do much with bats or balls that could potentially injure me.  I got semi decent at gymnastics until I realized that I was completely not flexible and a foot taller than everyone in my class.  Dance was out after my parent shut it down.  I mean, I was always more interested in music anyway, but being semi decent at something physical would have been nice, you know?  I remember my best friend introducing me to “sour grass”…you know that clover looking stuff that kids chew on because it tastes sour?  I refused to try it, because I informed her that “a dog could have peed on it” and she’d never know.  I was the total life of the party right??

The first time I went on an airplane was when I went on my senior trip to Europe in high school.  I know…dove right in, didn’t I?!  I was of course, fairly afraid to fly (I mean, you’re sitting on a chair IN THE SKY for crying out loud), partly because I’d never done it before.  Hilariously, my very first flight hit some turbulence and 90 percent of the passengers on the plane vomited into those little bags they provide.  Or onto my jacket and my shoe.  So that happened, and I thought that dramamine was just something you had to take to survive flying at all…and for my second flight, no one vomited and everyone fell asleep due to the drugs.  The first time (and second time) I tried snowboarding, I fell on my butt every single time I got off the dumb ski lift.  I mean, the thing was not moving at all that fast, but regardless, I would literally sit down in slow motion in the snow when it stopped.  Yeah.  It sucked.  I finally gave up and tobogganed down the bunny slopes on my rear end like a little kid.  I’ve still never been skiing, water skiing, wake boarding, in a lake, to Mexico, or to the bar downtown that smells like urine and bleach.  You can get a basic sense of how adventurous I truly am!

I really want my kids to have an appropriate amount of fearlessness.  Like, obviously I want them to be smart about stuff, but they shouldn’t be afraid to play sports or try new stuff.  Being adventurous when you’re young gives you a lot more life experiences to lean on and helps you be more of a flexible adult.  Unlike me, who all joking aside, struggles a lot to go out of my hometown where I have my comfort zone all mapped out.  I’m working on it, but it’s so much harder than if I had been taught that certain things weren’t meant to be feared on the level that I feared them.  I mean, I eventually loved sour grass and hey, probably munched on a little dog pee, but it’s sterile right?

Thankfully, I never developed fear of wearing different or interesting things, so that’s something right?  I’ve got a renewed love of vintage slips (can you tell?!) so I thought this one would be fun to pair with my husband’s military inspired shirt (he loves it when I raid his stuff even though my clothes try to eat his clothes in our closet!) and some combat boots.  It’s fun to play around with the soft girly quality of the lacy vintage with the elements of the more masculine like lace up boots and a men’s shirt.  Fearlessness belongs in many things, and fashion is most definitely one of them!

Have an AMAZING and FEARLESS weekend!
Katy

On Vintage Slips and Definitely Never Feeling Popular

When I was a kid, since I was home schooled, church was my only school-like experience.  I remember most of my Sunday school teachers because they were the only teachers I ever had until high school.  Some of them were great and others were less than amazing.  I had this one teacher when I was probably around eight years old who was the worst of them all.  He was just bad, plain and simple.  He had no kids and clearly knew nothing about them besides how to screw them up.  He had decided that one of the girls in my class was the most beautiful, talented, and constantly praise worthy person in my small universe.  To be completely honest, she was recognized as this by everyone at church.  She was, to put it simply, the “popular girl” in high school…but instead of it being high school, it was kids in elementary school.  She was beautiful.  She sang beautifully.  She was the IT girl of Sunday school.  Our teacher would point this out basically every Sunday.  He would say things like: “everyone wishes they could be like her” and “she’s the most beautiful star of the class”.  I, on the other hand, was none of these things.  I always wanted to be the lead part in the little plays we would put on, but she always got those parts because I had no confidence to even try…and I knew she was a shoe in anyway.  I was awkward, home schooled, wore bad glasses, and had zero idea of who I was so I was very quiet and shy and lonely.  I remember going home and crying, wishing I could just be her.  I remember wondering why I was me, and why I wasn’t a “star” like her.  I probably wasn’t the only person who felt like this, given his intense obsession with publicly praising the golden girl of the Sunday school class.

Today, I was downtown and I saw a mom who looked like she had it all together.  She was dressed perfectly and her baby had a super cute outfit on and they seemed so happy and relaxed.  And there I stood.  Feeling fat and disheveled, sweating through my clothing, and once again reminded that I am not “the popular girl”.  Now that may not be really “true” per say, because lots of people like me (although I could definitely write you a list of people who do not like me! Ha!), but on the inside, I probably will never ever feel like “the popular girl”.  You know what?  That’s probably a good thing.  I had the (un)fortune of dealing with that same girl later on in life and sure, she was still beautiful, talented, and most definitely popular.  But I saw her derail her own life for a while because she was so convinced of her own status.  And watching this was kind of tragic…mostly because she was not free to be her own person.  Since she had been praised and labelled and pinned as “the popular girl” and over and over again told WHO she was and HOW SPECIAL she was, she couldn’t be anything other than who they told her she was. And in reality, no one should be praised like that constantly as a child.  Because we ARE all special and stars and all that jazz.  But we should have some kind of goals to strive for and some room to grow and find out who we are.  No matter WHO that is and WHAT that looks like.  There are times when I remember how much it hurt to be compared constantly to someone else and to always fall short.  But then I realize that it gave me the opportunity to really be myself and to really learn who that is.  Which, I’m still doing quite clearly. :)

I have ALWAYS loved vintage slips.  I had a bazillion for a while, then in a moment of weakness, got rid of some of them.  And now, I’m in love with them all over again.  They were kind of a “style signature” for me before I got pregnant and before I kind of lost who I was for a while.  I think that they will be again because I still love them and feel like I have a whole new way to wear them than I used to!

I got this kind of crazy, bordering on 1980’s floral top from a thrift store and I love how the sleeves are under this vintage slip!  I feel like it tones down the craziness of it!  The red cowboy boots are vintage from a shop on Etsy and the squash blossom is from Classic Rock Couture.

Popular or not popular, we all just gotta be ourselves right?

Happy middle of the week :)
Katy